Tag Archive | character: chloe daushinger

April A-Z Blogging Challenge: Q is for Quietness

The Meme Master Post

Q is for quietness leading to mystery: after The Club.

Chloe D’Aushinger and her family were learning quietness.

Chloe’s silent arrest had shaken all of them, from her husband’s mother down to her youngest child. What they were learning now did more than shake them. “It feels,” her daughter Marie whispered, “as if we being changed into different people.”

“And that is both exactly what we are doing and not at all what we’re doing.” The good lady Nicholle had a skill for overhearing things that was nothing short of preternatural.

Marie, who was just old enough to think that adults should be more reasonable and far less silly, raised her chin and studied their hostess. “Please explain.”

“Who you are – who you really are – must not change. Your mother interested us for the same reason that she interested The Doctors.” Nicholle paused, exactly as their tutor did when waiting for them to figure out an answer.

Marie shared a glance with her older brother Tomas. He looked back at her expectantly. Marie worried her lower lip, and said, carefully, “She says things. She says things Mrs. Gershwin – she was our tutor – said I musn’t repeat.”

“She does. And more importantly, she says things that indicate she is thinking. Now, sometimes you are thinking things you don’t wish Mrs. Gershwin to know about, yes?”

She looked directly at Tomas this time, and it was Tomas who stuttered and nodded. “Yes, madame.”

“Well, just as like then, you must learn to project quietness, so that you may be as loud as you want in the privacy of your mind. This comes with some added advantages, of course.” Nicholle looked up as Chloe entered the room, pitching her conversation to include her as well.

“Yes?” Chloe raised her eyebrows. “Do tell?” Mme. D’Aushinger had taken to pacing the length and breadth of their “safe house”, muttering of the wasted time and penning as many missives as her hosts would allow, even while her children were enjoying the unexpected holiday, strange lessons or no.

“While you learn to project quietness, to smile just so while matters are being discussed, to say, so honestly ‘I shall say nothing on that’ when inappropriate questions are asked, when you learn all of that, you project an air of mystery. Soon, people will assume you an expert on all manner of things, and they will make the time and the quietness to come to you. Then, then you may speak without fear of the Doctors, for the Doctors have many foes, and they know how to make silence stick.”

This belongs to the Things Unspoken setting, along with N is for Nereid, O is for Octopi, and P is for Poinsettias.

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The Club, a story for Thimbleful Thursday

Chloe D’Aushinger had been arrested quietly in the middle of the night, with no notice to her family or to her not-inconsiderable business interests. She had spent three nights in the Pietierre “Hospital’s” more uncomfortable basement rooms before being just as quietly released on the recognizance of three people she had never met before.

Rene, no-last-name-given, took the lead. He was a tall man, wearing a taller hat with a very wide brim, which shadowed his face rather effectively. “Mme. D’Aushinger, I would like to welcome you into the club.”

“I really must be getting back to my family…” Chloe had been saying that for days. She had met with opposition of every sort – rough, direct, soft, indirect, hinting, threatening. Rene simply bowed, so low it was amazing his hat stayed on.

“While your lodgings are lovely, for the next week, I’m afraid it will be necessary for you to enjoy our hospitality. We’ve moved your family already, one at a time. Your home is being watched.”

A second shadowy figure coughed. Nicholle. She, too, was missing a last name. “Rene…”

“This is the time and place when we can say things, Mlle. She will have to learn soon enough to hear those things not said. I believe her days under the Pietierre have begun to teach her what words you cannot utter. But I feel she needs to understand a bit more before we move her.” Rene said this all at once, as if hurrying before Nicholle could cut him off.

The third figure, Ane, had not spoken at all. But from the breadth of shoulders and the thick hand provided to Chloe to shake, she had no question why the good gentle was there.

Which was more than she could say for herself. “I’m afraid I really don’t understand.” Chloe drew herself up, straightening her shoulders. She looked where she thought Rene’s eyes likely were. “I annoyed some powerful people, yes. When those of-“

“The thing is,” Rene interrupted, “when you say ‘those of my ilk,’ as you were going to, you don’t yet know what your ilk is.”

“That,” Nicholle took over, “is what we are here to correct. As Rene said… welcome to the club.”

Written to Marh 12’s Thimbleful Prompt. In the same universe as Around Elephants, which I believe needs a setting name (And MAY be the same setting as Edora & Rodegard)

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/911794.html. You can comment here or there.