Not Rocking the Boat

After Rock, Hard, Now What? and Two Rocks and All The Pebbles.

For the “Do up whatever story/stories suit your fancy or for whomever most wants/needs ’em.” commission and the poll here.

Getting Chress pants turned out to be a bit of a challenge. The laundry kept livery for the palace servants and slaves, true, and it kept uniforms for the guards. But even the broadest and widest of the palace servants were not generally as broad in the hips or the thighs as Chress. And while the guards were a match for him in size, they tended to favor kilts or short tunics; Chress’ opinion on that was short and to the point and decidedly negative.

The head launderer was beside himself trying to help, providing option after option. Finally, he reached into a bin on the other side of the room, the side where they kept the courtier’s clothing. “Sir Nateron is nearly of a height with you, and very… broad. He ripped these pants, and while I’d mended them properly, I had nobody to pass them down to.” He looked worried. “If a pair of mended pants are acceptable for the Princess’ slave…”

Chress took the pants from the launderer and looked them over. They were made of soft brown silk, very soft and very well-made. If you squinted, you could see the place where they had been mended, but it was high on the inner thigh, and it was unlikely anyone would spend too long with their face pressed between Chress’ thighs.

“Nice,” he muttered. He looked up at the launderer. “The nobs here dress like this?”

The launderer nodded. “Well, some of the young courtiers dress more brightly, or more extravagantly. But that’s how many of the older nobles dress, yes, sir.”

Chress barked out a laugh. “Good. Good, this’ll do. I mean–” He coughed quietly. “Princess?”

Arisse did not chuckle, but she did allow herself a smile. “They’re very nice pants. If we’re lucky, perhaps Sir Nateron will rip a shirt as well.”

“Oh, well, shirts may be easier. Some of the guards wear tunics with their kilts–”

“With silk pants?” Arisse raised her eyebrows. “He’ll look like a ragbag.”

“Can’t have that.” Chress’ laugh was a deep rumble, actually quite pleasant. “Well, is there a belt that will fit me there?”

“Oh, oh yes, quite a nice one, too. It was custom-made, but the, ah, commissioner did not like it when it was done.” The launderer tsked and produced a lovely belt the same color brown as the pants. The swirling design in it looked foreign, northern. It made a smile grow across Chress’ face, a slow, pleased expression.

“This will do. This will do nicely.” He looked over pants and belt. “Shoes and shirt can wait, if there’s someone in town who can do them up properly. What about a knife, Princess?”

“The armory is just this way. Thank you.” She nodded at the launderer, and he, in turn, bowed at her. “We may be visiting again.”

“I’ll keep an eye out for anything that will fit your man, Your Highness. Smooth ground under your feet and a light wind at your back.”

As the launderer’s blessing followed them out the door, Arisse thought she saw a twitch in Chress’ shoulders, but his face betrayed nothing, nor did he speak.

If you want more of this story – and this one could go on for a while!! – drop a tip in, ah, the tip handcuffs:

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0 thoughts on “Not Rocking the Boat

  1. Pants are good, and the belt pattern and parting blessing intrigue, but … plot? Or will be seeing more of the head launderer later on?

    • 😛 Mostly, this sets up her relationship with the staff belowstairs vs. her relationship with Fancy Ladies and Lords. Including, probably, sir-splits-his-pants.

      • Plot! We wants it! 🙂 And sure, not every short segment is going to make a major advance in the plot, but short segments spread over long periods of time feel slow. I may not be your most patient reader. <looks faintly guilty>

        • That’s fair, but I’m so up to my ears in projects that nothing’s getting done, and, tbh, this one is still getting donations, and donations make the Alder go ’round, too. Right now, I’m trying to get The Tod’cxeckz’ret Paper to a bingo before the deadline (EOD today).

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