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 Master and Servant

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Karinia
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PostSubject: Master and Servant   Sun Feb 19, 2012 12:51 pm

KASSIE

I curtseyed as much as I was able to at the two gentlemen. They seemed rather upset by my answer, I am not entirely sure what they were expecting me to say. My master's estate belongs to his sons, it has nothing to do with his father anymore, I am finishing off my contract in the future, it has nothing more to do with me. As the shorter of the two turned to leave, the taller stared me down, his eyes moving down from my face to my pregnancy.

"Can we speak with your husband," he said, nothing taking the effort to look at me in the face. These men may have dressed like the upper classes but when it came down to it, they were just peasants like myself, roaches trying to steal my master's property.

"I am sorry my Lords, he passed away two months ago," I replied. This much was true, my husband had died two months back.

"Your husband was," the man asked, flicking through some of his papers, "Steven Tamara, another servant of the du'Ley family, a bit old for you wouldn't he be. I see we do have him down as deceased. A real shame and you and your child have my condolences. Sorry, you're name was Kassie...?"

I had to wonder what this man expected from me. He had asked my name twice now, was he hoping I would change my name? And to offer condolences when he was trying to take everything I owned, they were just empty like his heart. "Kassie Tamara Sir. If you will excuse me my Lords, but I must lie down and rest, I am expecting soon." I curtseyed once more and closed the door quickly but softly.

I was expecting them to knock again, but they didn't, so things were finally starting to look up. I rubbed my baby bump and smiled to myself. Since I was six I had served my master and twenty-five years down the line I have finally been able to fulfill his wishes. I left the front room and made my way into the largest room of the house. I opened the door slowly, but his reaction told me he was awake again. I curtseyed to him and he grinned at me with that wondrous smile of his.

"More Alliance vultures?" he asked, beckoning me over. I obliged and sat down at the feet of his chair and he let his fingers stroke through my hair. It didn't matter whether it was his crippled hand or not, any touch from him was pleasure at it's fullest.

"I am sorry master. I believe they have left now." I replied, turning slightly to hold onto his hand. Where once I asked permission to touch him, in his current state he was welcome for any touch, especially from me.

"Kassie, you have never had anything to be sorry about. Remember, it is my son that rules my estate now. I am dead and I intend to keep it that way."

I looked up at his face. He would never look the same my master. The Alliance saw to that. My master the Lord Perenolde du'Ley. Thought dead at the battle of Alterac four years back.

But he wasn't dead and as he reminded me consistently, that was entirely down to me. He had asked me to leave his estate when it became clear what was happening in Alterac, he was prepared to defend it with his last breath. And I was prepared to save him with my last, my duty was to my master, not his country. By the time I had found after the fighting he was looking like he was now. The cruel soldiers of the Alliance had all but blinded him with slash across the face, crippled his legs and cut off one of his hands, it lying beside him, his personal seal still on the bracer that was on the wrist.

I had never killed anyone before that date. Some deer, some birds but never a human. Did I feel remorse? No. They attacked my master, so in just four arrows they were all dead, laying beside my master's unconscious body.

I managed to smuggle him out of the city and back my small cottage next to my master's estate on the country outskirts. Not long after we servants at the estate were greeted by members of the Alliance. The estate was apparently being passed over to my master's eldest son with the death of his father. The hand that I had left behind which only hours ago had I felt bad for abandoning had now saved my master's life, if they were to find him now he would surely be executed.

It wasn't until a month later when my master finally awoke and I told him the news. He was upset, but his anger soon turned to caring. Able to see nothing but shapes now, unable to walk without her help and limited in what he could do with one hand, he began to rely on me more and more with everything he did. Sometimes he was lash out at me, wanting to be put out of his misery, but with his eldest son's absence from the estate, it fell to him, through me, to keep away the vultures in his family. I'd converted my largest room into his personal chambers, far smaller than he was used to but was the best I could do.

Sometimes I brought up the idea of telling the estate he was still alive, but he refused. If he took the position of Lord du'Ley once again, it would severely weaken the position, especially in his current state, not to mention being branded a coward for not dying on the field. He had even refused to let his sons know, who knows who could watching and he wanted them to remember as a war hero, not a cripple.

"I thought so. Kassie, your hand has been rubbing that now since you've come back." he said, snapping me out of her memories. I blinked, realising his hand had moved down from my hair to my chest.

"It was-" I went to say as an almighty kick landed inside me and I reeled over. "He has just b-" I continued before another kick occurred. This one came even harder and I dropped my two hands to the floor and couldn't help but scream.

"Aren't you due soon Kassie?, quick, get down on on your back, I will be right back." he replied, moving his hand away from me. I couldn't see what he was doing, the pain far too excruciating for me to open my eyes. I tried to get onto my back but I found myself unable to.

"Master!" I screamed. His hand returned to my shoulder and he helped turn me over.

"The knife is beside you Kassie, I need you to give it to me when I ask for it. Until then, I need you to push, Even if I can't hold you, you'll know I am here for you both." I heard him groan as he tried to move down beside me without my help. I cursed myself for putting my master through this.

"Master!" I screamed before working my way into breathing heavily, "You...you should...shouldn't be..."

"Helping. Kassie, if there is one thing I will not let my body get in the way of, it is the care and safety of my children, all of them."
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Karinia
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PostSubject: Re: Master and Servant   Wed Feb 29, 2012 12:01 pm

KASSIE

I do not know why I had been expecting a boy. As far as I knew, my mother, grand-mother and beyond had only ever had girls.

My master named her Karinia. I liked it, I liked her. She represented the bond I had with my master. And he loved her, spending hours holding her in his one arm, rocking her slowly back and forth, sometimes only letting go of her for me to feed.

My master's room slowly became more and more equipped to deal with our young Karinia. His room had always been an assortment of things I had taken from his old rooms at the du'Ley estate where we now resided. He would show Karinia constantly his favourite painting, a specially commissioned watercolour, painted by Alterac's former royal painter, of him and his two sons. His wife was no where in the picture, this was a picture of the du'Ley bloodline.

I wasn't entirely sure myself about my master's idea to have Karinia take her place as the two brother's sister but my master seemed very convinced about it and I knew if he really wanted it. then I would do whatever I could do to help. We would spent nights talking about it, he would shower me with his dreams for his children. For almost two years he had hardly any bouts of depression. We were happy.

But that would change.



One day, I received a knock at the door. I had taken maternity leave, my master had always allowed his servants an exceptionally long time off and while I knew I was coming to the end of mine, it wasn't due quite yet. I sighed to myself before I opened the door, I expected it to be more vultures from the Alliance. I brushed down my hair, just to give of the best impression before I would meet them.

At first I was thankful, it wasn't creditors or anyone of the like. It was the new manager of the estate, Craig Haye. Later I would find out, it was much worse.

Craig Haye was the only son of the previous manager of the estate, Daniel Haye. Daniel had been working for my master ever since he was eighteen, he had retired around the same time I was giving birth, aged seventy. With my master's eldest son absent from the estate, it had fallen to Daniel to keep the parasites from taking the mansion and it's grounds, he had done a very good job of it. When my master had heard he was retiring, he asked me prepare for him a great gift, from myself and my 'late' master as thanks for his service.

Craig however was still growing into his role, he still hadn't refined it as much as his father had. He looked at me nervously, I had yet to see him since he had taken this job. Even though, technically, he outranked, I was still my master's personal servant, that carried a certain amount of respect.

"Ahh...Kassie. I'm sorry to disturb you. I was going through some papers with my father," he said. I smiled to myself, it seemed Daniel even in retirement wouldn't leave the estate entirely alone. "We came across this and he mentioned your name. he seemed quite upset when I told him I hadn't spoken to you about this." he continued.

He handed me a sheet of paper. Reading is something I'd never been good at and it had seemed like a waste to have lessons, so I explained to Craig that he would have to tell me what it said.

"Well, it says that the estate has changed hands due to the death of Lord du'Ley."

I looked at him confused. "To my master's eldest son, I know."

"This is less than two years old Kassie. It says the estate now belongs to the Lord du'Ley's next of kin, Lord Roike du'Ley."

I blinked at him, not really believing what i was hearing. When he could see I wasn't quite sure, he assured it was true. My master's eldest son, the man I thought was owning this estate was dead. Just like he didn't know my master was alive, my master didn't know his son was dead.

I thanked Daniel regretfully, but quietly cursed under my breath, he should have told me as soon as he found out. Now I had to ruin our paradise and tell my master.

I made no attempt to hide the fact from my master when I entered his room. I stayed curtsied until I had told him everything. He swore and hurled something at me. I felt a trickle of blood roll down my forehead and the smashed glass of my master's favourite portrait on the ground. He told me to take Karinia and get out of his room. I hurried over and picked up Karinia as he swore again, grabbing whatever he could reach and throwing it at me. I hurried out of the room and leaned up against the closed door and began to cry.



My master's good moods never returned after that. When it soon became apparent that Karinia had learning difficulties it became the final straw for him. I had always had trouble learning myself, but to put that curse upon my master's child was too much. he allowed me into his room once a day to deliever food and that was it, and as far as Karinia was concerned, he didn't even want to see anyone he considered a failure to his bloodline.

A few months later I entered his room to give him his food and he wasn't awake. I tried to wake him and I couldn't. I tried to find a pulse and I couldn't.

I spent the entire day trying to revive him, but I couldn't.
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Karinia
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PostSubject: Re: Master and Servant   Thu Mar 01, 2012 12:05 pm

KASSIE

I had never prepared for the death of my master. It took me about a week to get over my initial grief, his body still saying in his room. During the day I would have Karinia putting to use her first words of 'mama'. During the night I would walk around the house for hours, supposedly looking for somewhere to bury him, but I never found myself getting around to it.

I would just talk to myself, talk to him. For the past two years there had been no one in my life except him, no one to talk to except my master, the lose of him was like I had lost part of myself. I honestly felt for a time that I would be better just ending my life to join him. For some reason I couldn't do it, quite yet.

Karinia may still not have been able to walk, but she would crawl around the house as much as she could. One morning when I was sat outside his room asleep, she tried to open the door. Thankfully her little hands walking over my feet awoke me before she could do so, but it did tell me exactly what I needed to do. I buried my master that night so Karinia would never find him. Now I could spend the rest of life doing what my mother did for me, teaching me everything I would need to know to begin my service with the master's du'Ley.

During the day, I would teach Karinia how to respect the classes above us. We were the lower class, serving girls and to expect any more of ourselves was to do disservice to our masters. Everyone above us deserved to be treated with the greatest admiration and served to the fullest of our abilities, this is what I taught her first.

Eventually, her speech and her walking got better so I began work on perfecting these. I'd always struggled with learning to read and write so I decided to skip these. I hoped to get back to counting later on but I found Karinia growing up faster than I thought, so I settled for getting Karinia prepared for appropriate greetings and questions, what she should say and when. How to walk as elegantly as a Lady and how to not embarrass herself and most importantly, how to not embarrass her master.

I couldn't find myself getting over my master though, I still felt empty. Karinia filled part of the void, but I knew I would never fill the rest. I would spend nights sat on my bed with a knife in my hand, occasionally cutting my arms and trying to relax as the blood dripped down my skin. I would let the knife rest on my wrists but I could never do it. When Karinia was ready I told myself, then I would rejoin my master.

As Karinia approached six, the age that I and therefore she would begin her service, if only for a few hours, I asked Craig whether he could come meet Karinia. He said he would try but the next knock on the door a week later wasn't him, but his father.

"So, how is Karinia then Kassie?" he asked, smiling at me as he entered my house slowly, leaning his walking stick up against the side of the corridor.

"She is learning, but I felt like she would benefit more if someone else taught her about the estate and what sort of work she could expect to do when she begins."

We wandered into my second largest room, my largest still reserved as a shrine. Karinia got up from her chair as soon as Daniel entered and curtsied to him immediately before asking whether he required anything. He laughed slightly then said he didn't, rubbing her black hair playfully before he sat down.

"I see you've been teaching her perfectly," he said, "And how are you Karinia, you are looking forward to working?"



Craig came for a few more weeks, teaching Karinia something new each time. The final time he came he brought some glorious news.

Lord Roike du'Ley was returning home.
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Karinia
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PostSubject: Re: Master and Servant   Fri Mar 02, 2012 12:48 pm

KASSIE

Lord Roike's return coincided with Karinia's first day at work. It was planned that way, the mansion was going to be extremely busy and her services would be required, even at six. She could ferret around, carrying books and cutlery for guests and other servants. She was nervous, despite her best attempt to hide it. I was too, though after my years of service, I was far better at keeping it hidden.

The mansion was already busy with guests for a feast in Lord Roike's honour. From what I could remember of Lord Roike, this did not seem like his style. To me, it just seemed like a way for distant relatives and old friends of my master to try and sneak into his fortune. I was confident that Lord Roike was smart enough to see through the lies and deception, but that did not stop the thought in the back of my head.

I waited by the front door along with Craig and Daniel, dressed in my unique maid's uniform. It had been a while since I last wore it, it was reserved for working with the du'Ley family. Only Karinia wore something similar, it set us apart from the other servants. Craig and Daniel were both wearing quite formal suits, though Daniel now had to accompany his with a walking stick. Still, he did not want to miss this.

As Lord Roike walked through the open doors, I curtseyed and the others bowed. Lord Roike smiled and asked us to rise. He looked at each of us before walking over to the others.

"It is good to see you again Craig, I see the years haven't managed to ruin that face too much. I am glad you are here. I hope you will do me the honour of sitting with me on my table, you never know when I require you. Think of it as a recognition for your years of service to my father."

Craig bowed his head, replying that he would like to.

"Daniel, at last we meet. I'm glad you are fitting into your role quite well, I take it your father has been teaching you well?"

Daniel bowed his head too.

"Good, I would like you to sit with me as well."

Lord Roike walked up to me and I curtseyed again.

"I have missed you Kassie. I hear you have not been at work that much, is your...daughter was it?...doing well?"

"She is well thank you my Lord, pleased to have you back. I am afraid I have not been here that much, I have been in mourning for your father. I will redouble my efforts today, I promise you." I replied.

"I do not think there is much point in me asking you to sit at my table, I doubt you would accept," he continued, smiling, "But make sure you are the one serving my table, I will have need for you later. Now then gentlemen and lady, I do not have as much time as I would like back here before I must leave again, we should start this feast."

We all bowed or curtseyed again and followed Lord Roike to the main hall.

-=-=-=-

The more I saw Lord Roike, the more I saw in him his father's spirit. He looked just like my master, the same rugged good looks. As various cousins and relavtives approached his table in the hope of getting something from him, Lord Roike would sound like he was giving them something but his words said he was promising nothing.

Eventually he called me over and I curtseyed to him. He motioned for Craig and Daniel to lean in while he was unoccupied with guests.

"I need to be going soon, but first I need to get something from the library. I would rather not get bogged down with family, would the three of you be able to keep them distracted. Kassie, go find some dancers of something. Daniel, just tell the family I will be back, whatever you need to do to stop them following me. This book I needs to be kept away from the eyes of money-hungry children, it is value is far beyond money."

I curtseyed again and helped Lord Roike leave the main hall without attracting too much attention, then went to find some entertainment.
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Karinia
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PostSubject: Re: Master and Servant   Wed Jun 20, 2012 12:19 pm

KARINIA

I would say that walking around my master's house is one of my earliest memories. It was my first day, there were lots of people, no matter how much I tried to stay out of their way. I was filled with feelings of dread and worry, I was only six, and yet, I had working towards this for so long, I was excited about it all.

I was mostly ferrying around various items for other members of staff, with a few guests that had wandered away from the main hall asking for drinks, food or other random objects. Two other maids had been assigned to show me around, though it seemed to me they would keep talking and giggling, saying things like how handsome Roike was or how they loves what Toby had done with his hair. I didn't really understand any of it.

I was on my way to the library returning a book. I stopped and looked around. The maids were not anywhere to be seen. Behind me were two staircases, three more either side of me and another in front of me. I walked up to one of them in the hope it would seem familiar, but I didn't recognise any of them. There was some writing next to the stairs, at least I assumed it was writing, I wasn't quite sure.

I looked around again, trying my best not to cry. I kept hoping that mama or the maids would find me and show me the way. Mama had told me not to cry when I was working, but I was lost now and I just wanted show it.

As I wiped away the first tear that escaped by eye I heard a noise coming from behind me. I did as I had been taunt, step out of the way and curtseyed as they come past if it was a guest or anyone above my station. Silver armour came up from the stairs, a man with black hair looking quite impressive stepping into the area where I was. He looked around briefly, as if he knew the place, just from some time ago and focused on me.

My curisoity made me look up, but as soon as I realised he was looking at me, I curtseyed again. This wasn't someone who was meant to show me the way. A few seconds later I heard him walking closer and his feet appear next to me. I looked up at him and he held out his hand, motioning for the book I was carrying.

"Ahh, Tanya, Black Blade of Alterac. A fine read, if a little too old for you I think." he said, his eyes looking down at me. He looked at the black dress and apron I was wearing and looked away for a monent. "I take it you are not one of the family. You were not reading the book were you, as I said, it is a little too old for you."

"I-" I stuttered, his demand for a response obvious, "I cannot read my Lord. I am returning it to the library."

"Well, I hope that when you do learn how to read, you read this book. This one is one of three first editions left in the world, a fine book and rare as well. I am sure you would like it, a tale of female heroism at it's finest. Now, do you know the way to the library?"

I shoke my head, trying not to make eye contact with him.

"It is fortunate then, that I too am heading to the library, though for something far more valuable than a first edition book. Would you care to accompany me?"

I nodded and walked along beside him. I say walked, but for moments I would have to run to keep, following him as he went up stairs and round corners, walking along corridors, smiling at the suits of armour and giant paintings that decorated the walls. He would occasionally look at me to check I was still there, though I never felt the need to leave his side.

We reached the library eventually and he showed me where to put the book. It was a bit too high for me, though he recommended I get a chair to stand on and he would hold onto the book until I found one. When the book was safely away he told me to sit next to the entrance while he retireve something.

I was waiting for a long time, a small doubt in my mind thinking that he had left me here. The door to the library opened and in walked my mama. She looked around, saw me and hugged me briefly before asking what I was doing here. I was about to reply before the gentleman appeared again, this time carrying as black bag with red markings on it, clearly a book inside. As soon as my mama saw him she curtseyed to him. I climbed off the chair and mimiced her and he smiled at us.

"I thought it was her, your daughter is doing well I see Kassie," he said before walking up closer to my mama, "Now I need to leave this place before the family catch me again, will you be able to keep them away from the south exit?"

Mama smiled and we all left the library. As she directed me towards one set of stairs while the gentleman walked towards another, she told me to bid farwell to my master, the Lord du'Ley.
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PostSubject: Re: Master and Servant   Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:28 am

KASSIE

The next few years at the estate past without any real problems. I was not sure what was going on in the wider world, it did not matter to me. All I cared about was the state of Lord Roike's mansion and his property. While we still had a few people arrive at our doorstop trying to get some money or trying to take some land, they were quite few.

We still had quite a few of Lord Roike's relatives come and stay, we unfortunately could not turn them down. And as for Lord Roike, he never returned. He sent letters by messenger asking us to do things for him, but never a return address. If I wasn't so sure it was him by the way he spoke in his letters I would have been worried for his safety. But he was still my master's son, what he did was not meant to appease me or worry me, I had complete faith on him.

Karinia's meeting with her master had spurred her on greatly over the last few years. I would like to say the meeting was planned, but by asking how Karinia met her master I could tell it was merely an error on Karinia's part. I was quite worried about how embarrassed Roike must have been to see a little girl lost in his mansion, though thinking back, I saw none of that on his face, only curiosity.

Karinia was growing up and together we were spending many days working, the other days of the week we were out practicing our marksmanship. In terms of shooting, she was a natural. In terms of work, she was progressing finely. Each year we seemed to move onto a different aspect rather than just ferrying, from cleaning to cooking. If I was to say she was a natural at anything besides marksmanship though, I would have said she was an expert at making cocktails and while it failed to draw out the same smile from her hunting did, she was still a servant then so a silent smile was all that was needed.

The peace of years was shattered when we heard Craig had passed away. While Daniel seemed to cope quite well with his lose, there would be days he wouldn't come in, the two of them were close.

I was never one to question my Lord Roike, but when Daniel came to our house one day to ask me to meet someone who Lord Roike had appointed to run the estate and Daniel some time off, I became a bit worried when I heard who it was.

A cousin of Lord Roike, a smooth-talker who cared for little besides money and power. Maybe Lord Roike was distracted when he appointed him, maybe he hoped that his cousin would grow well into his role. I never trusted him, even if he was my superior.

Toby duMars
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