It took half an hour to get everyone settled down. When Senga managed to get Candavish and Erramun to stop sizing each other up, got Allayne to stop fussing over the staff’s uniforms, which, it appeared, had a fashion of their own, got Ezer to stop whining and acting like his head was going to explode, and got Chitter to stop looking for trap doors from which the staff could have arrived – all of this while trying to ignore her own pounding heart and the confused twist in her chest – she sat down with a thump in the Casual Lounge.
“I… Okay. Candavish, Mrs. Johnson and Mrs. Collier, please come sit with us. Could, ah, someone get me some coffee? Coffee, everyone?”
Her crew were looking at her like she’d grown a second head. “Okay, Allayne will have black tea with a hint of mint, if we have it. Ezer drinks his coffee with enough cream and sugar to bring it to beige caramel. I drink mine black with one ice cube. Chitter likes soda; if you don’t have that, she’ll have water. Erramun?”
He looked surprised she was asking his opinion. “Black tea,” he managed.
“Black tea. Thank you.”
One of the younger maids – younger than her! – scurried off. Continue reading