Hey everyone. Sorry for the late post, for some reason the wordpress scheduley thingy didn’t do its job. In all the Thanksgiving hullabaloo I didn’t think to check on it until just now. Here is part two of the Shoemaker’s Daughter.
The shoe maker’s daughter awoke sometime later. When her eyes opened, the world slid in and out of focus. She felt something upon her forehead, and realized it was a cool damp cloth. Cautiously, she sat up and found that she was inside a large bedchamber.
At that moment, there came a gentle rapping upon her door before it opened and revealed the most handsome man she had ever seen. Dark locks of hair flowed down to his broad shoulders and his emerald eyes sparkled with an inner fire. He wore rich garments with all the adornment of a prince. When he spoke, his voice was like honey that had been warmed by the sun.
“Ah, you’re awake! I was afraid you might never open your eyes again!”
“Where am I?” She asked. “Who are you?”
“My name is Lucien. I am the Lord and master of all you see before you.”
“How did I get here?”
“I carried you away from the meadow and brought you here. Those flowers are deceptively sweet; from a distance they are wonderful, but get too close and they can over power you. When I found you, you had already inhaled deeply of its perfume, and it was only with my quickest steed and brightest apothecary I was able to bring you back from the very edge of death’s door!”
“I had no idea they were so dangerous! Thank you, kind sir.”
“It was my privilege and my honor.” Slowly, a wolfish grin began to spread across his face. “It is not often one finds such a… lovely woman in such dire need.”
His inflection and the glimmer in his eye put the girl ill at ease.
“While I appreciate all you’ve done for me, I’m afraid I must be getting back. My father will be worried if he returns and I am not waiting for him.”
“Please, won’t you at least stay for dinner? My cooks are the greatest in all the land!”
“I really shouldn’t…”
“Please? Consider it my reward for rescuing you. ”
The girl knew she should go back home immediately, but this man had saved her life. He wasn’t asking her for much, and she was hungry. It would be rude to part company so quickly, so with a gentle smile and timid nod, she acquiesced.
Lucien clapped his hands together and smiled broadly. “Splendid! I shall alert the cooks and tonight we shall feast!” He began to leave, but turned to face her once more when he reached the door.
“One more thing miss… If I may be so bold, there’s a change of clothes in the armoire. A dirty dress at the dinner table simply won’t do.”
The girl looked down, and sure enough, her white dress was covered in mud and grass stains. Somehow, not taking Lucien up on his suggestion did not feel like an option. Seeing little recourse, she nodded and agreed. Lucien smiled, and walked out of the room.
Standing to her feet, the girl walked to the armoire. Inside it, was a single dress. It was crimson and made out of luxurious fabric. She had never seen, let alone worn something so exquisite. She quickly changed clothes, and gasped when she looked at herself in the mirror. Never before had she looked more like a woman and less like a girl. She admired herself in the mirror while she ran a brush through her hair. When she felt presentable, she stepped out of the bedroom into the rest of Lucien’s home.
Such opulence! She was inside of a mansion, a castle perhaps. Ornate rugs, paintings, and art lined the hallways. She could have wandered the rooms for days, but when she caught the scent of food she realized how hungry she truly was. She went downstairs and entered the dining hall.
The cooks had outdone themselves. The table was covered in every good kind of food, much of it exotic and unknown to the shoe maker’s daughter.
Lucien stood when she approached.
“Here she is! My darling, you look magnificent!”
She felt heat spreading up her cheeks.
“The dress is very nice, thank you.”
“It is you who makes the dress so beautiful.” With that, Lucien pulled a chair out in which the daughter sat. He pushed her in towards the table and filled her goblet with wine. When she wasn’t looking, he dropped a tablet into her drink.
Lucien sat back at his seat, and then gestured towards her. “Please, begin.”
Despite her best intent and her strongest desire, she found herself eating without presence of mind. There were so many new foods to try and she was so hungry! Her host watched as she wolfed down plate after plate of food. She never looked up long enough to notice that his own plate had remained empty. He decided he would like to get to know this delicate morsel that sat before him.
“Which village do you hail from?”
The daughter told him through a mouthful of food. The dictums of etiquette kicked in halfway through and she tried to cover her mouth as she spoke.
“Oh, I know that area well. Who is your father?”
Normally, the answer would have come to her quickly, but she seemed to find herself in a bit of a fog. After thinking about it just a little harder than she should have had to, she said, “The shoe maker.”
Lucien’s gaze locked onto her so sharply that she actually looked up from her meal and noticed his plate for the first time.
“You know him?”
Lucien’s face grew dark as his eyes grew distant. “We were… Business associates, once.”
“Really? I don’t… I don’t think he ever mentioned you.” She then hiccupped and giggled.
“No, I don’t suppose he would…” An idea suddenly came to Lucien. His eyes slid over to the feasting daughter, and the dark, feral smile began to spread across his face once more.