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Author Topic: Kelson Era FanFic The Rustic Prince  (Read 3307 times)

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Offline Evie

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The Rustic Prince
« on: September 15, 2010, 05:12:54 pm »
The Rustic Prince


   May 15, 1146
   The Duchy of Haldane


   Javan Uthyr Richard Urien Haldane was Prince of Meara, Heir Apparent to the Throne of Gwynedd, newly-turned sixteen, and freshly soaked.  Only the latter mattered to him at the moment, as he came up from the ice cold stream sputtering in indignation while his friends, safe and dry on the far bank, chortled.  Kelric Morgan, Earl of Lendour, dismounted, walking up to the stream's edge to give the young prince a hand up.

   “How's the water?”  Kelric asked with a grin as Javan clasped his hand.

   “Damned cold!”  Javan retorted, though he was having trouble holding back a grin of his own.  At last it broke free, adding warmth to his Haldane gray eyes.

   “It appears your new horse isn't fond of crossing fords,” Lord Seamus O'Flynn teased.  “I told you that you should have let my father choose one for you.”

   “Why, does Earl Derry stream-test every horse he puts through its paces before buying it?” Javan shot back.  He shook his head rapidly at Seamus, sprinkling him with cold spring water like a dog coming out of a bath, and the earl's heir laughed.
 
   Sir Ciaran MacArdry chuckled.  “Well, let's see about getting you into some dry clothes, and  then maybe we can find a warm tavern where you can thaw out.  I may have something in my saddlebag that will fit you; we're around the same size, I think.”

   Duncan Michael, Earl of Kierney, caught the balky gelding’s reins and soothed him, linking with the beast to quiet him with wordless comfort.  “I think he just didn’t like the idea of swimming in icy water,” he told Javan as he used a spare tunic to wipe the saddle dry, then began giving the beast a quick rubdown, trying to warm and dry him as best he could under the circumstances.

   “Funny, neither do I!” replied the prince, although the laugh accompanying this statement assured his friends that his good humor had been restored.  “And certainly not with all my clothes on!”

   Lord Jamyl Arilan’s eyes scanned the near distance.  “I see what looks to be chimney smoke just beyond that copse of trees.  If I remember aright, there’s a village not too far from here.  Shall we ride on and see if there’s an inn or tavern up ahead?”

   “We might as well,” Kelric said, glancing up at the sky.  “We can catch a pint or three, let Javan get warm again, then continue on our way.  Even with the delay, we should have no trouble reaching your father’s hunting lodge outside Welford before nightfall, Your Highness.  Will that work for you?”

   Javan nodded.  “I’m all for a warm change of clothes and a cheery pint.  Or three.  Please stop Seamus at three, though; we don’t want a repeat of what happened in Desse.”

   The men laughed.  “Oh?  What happened in Desse, Seamus?”  Ciaran asked, his green-gray eyes sparkling with mirth.  “I must have missed that trip.”

   “Nothing!” Seamus interjected hastily.

   Jamyl grinned widely.  “What happens in Desse stays in Desse,” he teased, winking at Seamus.  “Except when it doesn’t.” 

   The Prince chuckled at his friends’ banter as he shucked off his wet clothing and toweled himself as best he could with one of Ciaran’s spare undertunics before changing into his friend’s dry clothing.  “Ciaran, you’ve got me looking like a MacArdry!” he joked.

   “Nothing in the world wrong with that.  There’s nothing a Haldane’s got that we MacArdrys don’t, except…well…all of Gwynedd.”  The MacArdry lightning-swift smile lit up the Transha man’s features.  “Trifling things like that.”

   “Right.  I may run off to Transha then, next time my father gets the notion to make me tot up the quarterly accounts for the Duchy of Haldane.”  Javan swung himself back into his saddle.  “All right, let’s make for that warm hearth up ahead.”

#

   The smoke was coming from a peasant’s hut just outside the village of Moulton.  As the riders approached, a young maiden who looked to be in the first flower of womanhood opened the door to peer out at them, shading her eyes against the sun with one hand.

   “Mistress crofter,” Kelric said, dismounting and sweeping the young woman a courteous bow, “our friend here took a tumble in the stream just west of here,” he told her, tilting his head towards Prince Javan.   “Might he come in briefly to warm by your fire?”  Mentally, he sent the prince his suggestion that it might be best for them to remain anonymous, at least at present, an idea which met the prince’s delighted agreement.

   The peasant lass gave the men a tentative smile, her gaze lingering on Javan briefly.  She bit her lip as she turned her attention back to Kelric.  “I’m sorry, I truly don’t mean to be inhospitable, but my father is in the lord’s field right now…though he’ll be returning very soon!”  Her cheeks turned slightly pink.  “I don’t think he’d approve of me inviting a man in, even though….”  She looked rather worriedly at Javan’s damp hair.  “It is rather cool today.  I suppose there’d be no harm in letting just you come inside, if you like.  I’ve chores to do outside anyhow.”  She turned a dimpled smile up at Javan.  “Or you’re welcome to build a fire out here, if you promise to mind it carefully and not let it spread.”

   “That’s all right; we don’t mean to be any trouble,” Javan assured her.  “There’s a village nearby, isn’t there?  We could just stop by the local tavern.”

   Her eyes widened.  “Oh, no, my lord, you don’t want to do that!”  She giggled.  “There’s only one tavern in Moulton, I’m afraid, and it’s not very clean.  Old Bess rarely sweeps out the rushes, and it’s a dark pit of fleas and lice in there.  And her ale’s sour.  Papa rides clear over to Ashington when he wants a decent brew.”  She laughed.  “And so does Lord Moulton!”

   Javan glanced over at Kelric.  “Lord Moulton isn’t in residence right now, is he?”

   Kelric shook his head.  “I doubt it, since he was in Rhemuth when we left.”

   The girl’s blue eyes brightened at that.  “You’ve come from Rhemuth, then?  Oh, I’d love to hear news from Rhemuth!”  She cast a cautious glance northward, presumably towards wherever her father had gone, then beamed up at the men.  “We haven’t much, but if you’d like a bit of bread and cheese and pottage and some small ale, I’ve some to spare.”   She gave Javan a winsome smile.  “Come inside and warm up, my lord.”

   He needed no further coaxing.  Dismounting, he turned his horse over to Ciaran, then swept the lady a courtly bow.  “Thank you, my lady.”  He followed her across the small yard in front of her cottage, watching his step to avoid treading upon one of the chickens foraging within the low-fenced perimeter.

   She chuckled.  “Oh, I’m hardly a lady,” she assured him, discreetly wiping a smudge of flour off her hands onto her linen apron.  “A fine lord like yourself ought to know that much.”  She propped open the door to her home with a large rock, hoping her father would be satisfied by her attempt at propriety should he return home unexpectedly early.  “Help yourself to my hearth.”

   Javan seated himself on a low stool next to the fireplace, watching the chestnut-haired beauty stir the pottage contained in a kettle hanging over the fire.  “How do you know I’m a fine lord,” he teased.  “I could be anyone, you know.”

   She laughed.  “Well, Lord Anyone, for one thing, those aren’t plow horses you’re riding.  And your clothing, while rustic enough in style, is of rather fine cloth.”  She gave him a careful once-over.  “Well, at least that undertunic is.  The overtunic looks homespun, but I suppose you’d not want to wear your Court best while out hunting.”  She tilted her head at him, a challenging smile playing across her lips.  “Have I guessed right?”

   He shrugged.  “Mayhap.  But what would you like for me to call you, demoiselle?”

   She set brown bread and cheese upon a tray, using her belt knife to slice the loaf.  “I’m called Gemina.”  The lass looked up from her work.  “And you, my lord?”

   “Ja—Richard.”  He glanced down at Ciaran’s clothing.  “Of Transha.”

   Gemina’s lips twitched slightly as she began to scoop pottage into some clean mugs and bowls.  “Jarichard…is that a Border name?”

   The prince laughed, coloring a bit.   “No, it’s just Richard.  I was…um… momentarily distracted.”  As indeed he was at just that moment, as the lass set his portion of the food aside on a low bench next to his stool, then bent to lift the tray of food to bring outside to his friends, giving him an appealing glimpse of cleavage at the scooped neckline of her simple bodice.  He tore his eyes away, politely studying the flames instead. 

     “Indeed,” she said drily, straightening.  “I’ll be right back.”  She started to carry the tray out. 

     Javan, belatedly remembering he was supposed to be a simple Border lord and not a Prince, leapt up from his stool.  “Allow me to carry that for you, Mistress Gemina.”

     “No need,” she called over her shoulder.  “Your hair’s still damp.”  She carried the tray toward the barn, where the Prince’s men were tending to their horses.  “Here you are, then.  Your friend Lord Richard is toasting nicely, my lords.  I’m afraid I haven’t quite enough bowls to go around, so I’ve had to use mugs too, but once you’re done I’ll rinse the dregs out and give you some small ale to wash it all down if you wish.”

     Kelric grinned down at her.  “Thank you, demoiselle.  Remind ‘Lord Richard’ to toast both sides, please.”   

     Gemina laughed.  “I shall, my lord!”

#

   “She’s a winsome little thing,” Seamus remarked as they watched the maiden go back into her cottage.

   “Behave,” Kelric chided, a twinkle in his eyes. 

   “I am behaving!” the Earl of Derry’s son protested with a grin.

   “Um hm.  Your mind’s not.  I know you,” Kelric teased.

   Duncan Michael’s green eyes gleamed with mischief.  “I wonder how ‘Richard’ would react if we were to ride off for a bit—maybe just an hour or two—so he could get better acquainted with the fair damsel?”

   Sir Ciaran laughed.  “No.  Tempting as the thought is…no.  He’d kill us.  And if he didn’t, the King definitely would!  Kelric and I are supposed to be taking care of you beastly lot.”  He shot his liegelord’s heir a grin.  “Besides, whatever happened to your fine reputation for moral rectitude?  I’m supposed to be the rowdy Border reprobate, at least in Stefania’s father’s opinion!” Jamyl, who shared that same father with Lady Stefania, rolled his eyes expressively.

   Duncan Michael gave his MacArdry cousin an all too innocent smile.  “I’ll have you know I have a sterling character,” he deadpanned.  “I’m the grandson of one priest and the son of another; what could possibly be more respectable than that!”

   His friends chortled, despite knowing the perfectly legitimate nature of his priestly ancestry.

   “I don’t know,” Jamyl opined.  “Leaving Javan in the company of a pretty young maid like that would be taking very good care of him, I’d think.  The King’s Heir is supposed to be open to educational experiences, is he not?”  The blue-violet eyes laughed over his mug of pottage.

   Kelric laughed.  “The King’s Heir is not supposed to be riding about the Duchy of Haldane on anything besides a horse, though I’m certain he’ll be most grateful for your tender concern for his education.”  He shook his head.  “Seriously, I know you Arilans think your family motto is ‘It’s easier to get forgiveness than permission,’ but the King would hardly thank us if a peasant lass, no matter how charming, turned up at the Castle with a Haldane by-blow nine months down the road.”

   “Ah, but she doesn’t know he’s a Haldane, now does she?” Jamyl countered.

   Duncan Michael chuckled.  “Sweet Jesú, Jamyl, I was joking!  I do hope you’re not serious?”

   Jamyl shrugged.  “He’s sixteen.  And this is a birthday outing of sorts.”

   The Earl of Kierney snorted.  “Hell, when I turned sixteen, I got a R’Kassi stallion, not a beautiful peasant wench.  I’m not sure if I got short-changed or not!”

   Ciaran grinned.  “If you didn’t get a peasant wench, or even a highborn one, it’s certainly not for lack of the ladies throwing themselves at you!”

   “At my coronet, you mean,” Duncan Michael corrected, with a wry grin at Kelric, who laughed knowingly.

   “Well, you know, if you set your coronet in the middle of your mattress, maybe the next time a lass throws herself at it, you could catch her,” Ciaran suggested.

   The two Earls laughed.  “Yes, I’ll try that next time I’m at Court,” Kelric said drily.  “Might help to place the coronet pointy-side down, though, just in case I miss.  Not that I really need bait, especially when I can simply stand downwind of Seamus and wait for him to generate the O’Flynn charm.”

   “It’s up to me to continue the Derry line, you know.  A bit hard to do that if I can’t find the right woman.”

   “Yes, but it’s supposed to be ‘wed then bed,’ you cad, not ‘bed then run like hell.’” 

   Duncan Michael glanced back over his shoulder at the open door to the cottage.  “Keep your voices down, lads.  We don’t want to scare the lass.  You saw how wary she was to let us stay in the first place—with good reason, I might add.  We could’ve been brigands, for all she knew, or at least men up to no good.”  He quirked a smile at Seamus and Jamyl.  “Truly up to no good, that is, not simply up to a tumble with a lass who’s willing to offer.  Not to mention that if her father really is expected back soon, he’d hardly thank us for talking of his daughter as if she’s a lightskirt.”

   Jamyl nodded.  “You’re right.  Still, ‘Richard’s’ one damn lucky ‘lord’ right now.  He’s getting the nice scenery; we just get pottage.”

   “Good pottage, though,” Kelric said, chuckling.  “I’ve had far worse.  If this is her cooking, she’ll make some peasant lad a very happy man someday.”

   Seamus grinned.  “Oh, I think she’d make him a happy man even if she scorched the pot.  Damn fine lines on that filly.”

   Kelric laughed.  “Jesú, you’re truly Derry’s son, aren’t you?  She’s a woman, Seamus, not a horse.”

#

   ‘Richard’ finished the bowl of pottage he was eating and looked up at his hostess.  “This is very good, Mistress Gemina.  Thank you.”  He set the bowl down on the bench beside him and ran his fingers through his hair.  “I think it’s almost dry now.  We probably should take our leave.”

   The damsel cocked her head at him.  “I don’t know; it’s getting a bit cooler out.  Let me check.”  She ran her fingertips briskly through his raven hair, startling him.  “No, it’s still damp underneath.  Best not risk it yet; you’d not want to have to cut your hunt short because you’ve caught cold.”  She sat on the bench close to him, putting a large wooden bowl between them, and another on the floor between their feet.  “I don’t suppose you’ve shelled peas before?  You’ve probably got kitchen maids to do that.”

   The prince grinned. “You’re right.  I’ve never shelled peas, though I’m pretty handy at eating them.”  He watched her thumb pop the swollen green pod open, then flick down the inside of the pod to pop the peas out into the bowl on the bench before discarding the empty pod into the bowl at their feet. 

   She handed him a pod.  “You try.”

   He laughed, watching her technique for a moment before venturing a try.  His pod popped open quite satisfyingly, and he grinned as he popped one pea into his mouth then dumped the rest into the bowl.”

   “Oh, now, Lord Moulton won’t thank you for stealing his tithe!  You know he’s supposed to get every tenth pea.”

   The prince chuckled, knowing the girl was joking.  “I certainly hope you give him his crop tithe before it’s shelled, not after.”

   “You’re a city man; how would you know?” she joked back.

   “What makes you think I’m a city man?” he countered.

   She glanced at him.  “Your hands.  You’ve got the calluses of one born to sword and horse, but not enough dirt ground into your fingers to be a man of the soil.  I’ll bet you’ve never milked a goat either.”

    “You’re right, I haven’t.  Do you mean to teach me that too?”

   “Why not?  It could be useful.  Might even save your life someday.  Who knows, you might be languishing on some battlefield in the hot summer sun, barely able to crawl for your wounds, but what should appear but a goat in need of milking, and you dying for a drink....” 

   He burst out laughing.  “Yes, that sort of thing happens to me constantly.  I hate it when that happens.”  He popped another row of peas into the bowl and tossed the empty shell into the discards.

   She smiled as she pulled another pod out of the bowl.  “You’re really nice. I was afraid you might be stuffy.”

   Javan looked startled.  “Why?”

   She glanced down at her pod, shrugging.  “I’ve not met all that many lords, save for Lord Moulton and his kin.  Not that they’re all that stuffy, really, but the few others I have met have been with hunting parties like yours, passing through here while following the river, only they’re not always so courteous.”  She blushed.  “Some have been…quite ungallant, and Papa had to be very forceful to make them leave me alone.  I almost didn’t invite you in, since he’s not at home, but I’m glad I did.”  She gave him a sidelong look, smiling slightly.  “I just hope he doesn’t misconstrue.  I’m really too young to die.”  The smile turned into a grin.

   He laughed.  “And so am I!  Believe me, if my father had any notion I was here and even thought my intentions in coming in here were anything less than honorable, I’d be just as dead.  Or at least hurting badly enough to wish I were.”   He frowned slightly as he shelled another pea pod.  “I don’t suppose you recall the names of those lords who were discourteous to you, or at least their colors or devices?”

   She shook her head.  “Not really.  I might remember if I saw them again.”

   The gray eyes studied her, wondering if he dared ask whether she’d allow him to have a peek at those memories, but as if sensing his intent, she shook her head.  “It’s really not important.  They’ve not stopped by this way again, and it’s been a couple of years.”

   “All right, but if it does happen again….”  His voice trailed off as he remembered he was supposed to be a mere Border lord, not the Royal Heir. 

   Gemina’s mouth quirked in a faint smile.  “If it happens again, ask a village lad to run a message to Transha, and hope he knows where that is?  Or are you normally found in Rhemuth?”

   ‘Richard’ grinned sheepishly.  “In Rhemuth.”

   She nodded.  “I thought so.  At the Castle, I’ll bet.”

   “And what makes you think that?”

   The lass burst into laughter.  “You forgot to take off your ring.  I might just be a peasant lass, but the Lion of Gwynedd with the Heir's label is pretty recognizable even for someone who doesn’t know heraldry from a handbasket!”

   Prince Javan stared at the signet with a chagrined smile.  “I forgot I was still wearing it.  I almost never take it off.”

   “I’d imagine not.”  Gemina giggled.  “Do you still want to learn how to milk a goat, Your Highness?”

   “Actually, yes, I would,” he said, surprising her.

   “All right.”  She put down the pea pod she held, lacing her fingers together in front of her, then turning her arms so that her thumbs pointed straight down.  “Do this.”

   Javan, looking baffled, followed her instructions.  She lightly grasped each of his thumbs between her own thumb and forefinger in a very loose fist, then squeezed each thumb from top to tip in a gentle motion while drawing downward, one side at a time.  “It’s a hand motion like so.  You want to draw the milk from the udder down each teat from top to bottom, gently but firmly….”  She glanced up and caught him biting his lip, trying hard not to explode with laughter, his cheeks growing rosy.  “What?”

   He shook his head, an amused gleam in his eyes.  “Nothing.  Do continue, please.”

   “Oh, I think not.”  She dropped her hands back into her lap, blushing slightly, then began shelling peas again.  “I keep forgetting about the perversity of the male mind.”

   He laughed outright.  “Forgive me for having one then, my lady.”

   “Oh, are we back to ‘my lady’ again?”  She struggled to hold back a smile as she glanced around at her humble cottage.  “I imagine my cottage must remind you of your Great Hall.  Everyone makes that mistake.  Is your hair dry yet?”

   Javan checked.  “Yes, unfortunately.  And we really must be on our way.”

   Her blue eyes sparkled at him.  “Would you like to milk my goat on your way out?  Her pen's out back.”

   “Oh no, I’d only get kicked for my troubles, I’m afraid.  I’ll let you do the honors.”  He stood, holding a hand palm up towards her.  After a moment, she lay her hand in his.  He brought it to his lips, laying a light kiss on her fingertips.

   “I thought you were only supposed to kiss the air above my hand,” she said.  “Has the custom changed in Rhemuth?”

   The Haldane heir grinned at his hostess.  “No.  I just wanted to see if I could kiss a pretty maid and get away with it.”

   She laughed.  “Only that.  I’ll be no man’s doxy, even if he is the future King of Gwynedd.”

   He nodded.  “I didn't expect you would.  Nor would I repay your gracious hospitality with the rudeness of presuming.”  Prince Javan bowed.  “But it has been my very great pleasure to meet you, Mistress Gemina.  And thank you for the food and the…farming lessons.”  He chuckled.

   “The pleasure was mine,” she said quietly.  “God speed, Your Highness.”  She stole a look out the open door, then swiftly stood on tiptoe to plant a soft kiss on his cheek, stepping back from the surprised Prince almost as quickly.  “There, you’ve had two kisses; now you can brag to your friends.”  She rolled her eyes in mock sufferance.

   He laughed.  “I would, but then they’d think they were entitled to kisses too, and you’d have a queue before your door.  Your Papa would not be pleased, I’m afraid.  Let’s keep this our little secret, shall we?”

   “As you wish, ‘Lord Richard.’”

   “Well, if it's to be as I wish, might I hope for a third kiss?”  The Prince pulled the peasant girl close, studying her upturned face.  “Good luck's supposed to come in threes, you know.”

   Gemina hesitated, then allowed him a brief brush of lips against hers before gently pulling away.  She pointed towards the open door with a demure smile.  “Out, Your Highness!”

   The young Haldane grinned and went to rejoin his waiting entourage.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2017, 10:23:46 pm by Evie »
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Offline AnnieUK

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Re: The Rustic Prince
« Reply #1 on: September 15, 2010, 05:46:09 pm »
These lads shouldn't be allowed out in groups of more than two, and even two is a gamble!


Offline derynifanatic64

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Re: The Rustic Prince
« Reply #2 on: September 15, 2010, 07:04:23 pm »
Boys will be boys!!
We will never forget the events of 9-11!!  USA!! USA!!

Offline kirienne

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Re: The Rustic Prince
« Reply #3 on: September 15, 2010, 08:17:37 pm »
LOL, another fine story my dear!!!!!!! I love it :-)

Offline Elkhound

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Re: The Rustic Prince
« Reply #4 on: September 15, 2010, 11:41:03 pm »
You should have had him milk the goat.

I once saw a bumper sticker from a goat breeders' association:  "If God had meant us to milk cows, He would have given us four hands!"

Offline Alkari

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Re: The Rustic Prince
« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2010, 04:29:43 am »
A bunch of likely lads!   And three kisses from a Haldane prince - methinks Gemima will be telling that story till the day she dies.

Quote
Kelric and I are supposed to be taking care of you beastly lot
 ROFL at "mission impossible" - though given the ages of Kelric and Ciaran, I am very tempted to ask: Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?
« Last Edit: September 16, 2010, 04:33:09 am by Alkari »

Offline Evie

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Re: The Rustic Prince
« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2010, 10:04:48 am »
Who's watching them, indeed!   ;D  Maybe Kelson just thought this might be valuable leadership experience for Kelric and Ciaran?  *sporfle!*  I'm thinking this was a hunting trip similar to the one Brion took shortly after he turned 14, giving him a chance to become more familiar with the lands that would someday be his, and also giving him a chance to visit some of the nobility.  Kelson's probably got Javan checking in on his various Haldane lords and manors while out having his "fun time" with his hunting buddies, so it's not all play.  Though having been a father for around 18 years now (since the princesses are older), Kelson would also know that with this rowdy lot, it's going to be far from all business as well.   :D

Still, for all that talk, I get the impression they're probably fairly decent lads on the whole, and possibly a lot more brag than action, though Seamus might have a tendency to get a bit in over his head and need more careful watching, and you'd want to guard your pretty young daughters around him.  Jamyl, too, might bear some watching in his own quieter, more Seisyll-like way.  (I have the feeling Seisyll's distrust of Ciaran has little to do with Ciaran's character, but much more to do with Seisyll's memories of himself as a younger man.  Seisyll just has a bad case of "No Man Is Good Enough For My Precious Baby Girl"!  ;D)  Duncan Michael, despite his quip that touched off the whole "Let's leave Javan alone with the fair maiden" round of jesting, comes across as a fairly conscientious sort (probably no surprise there, given he's Duncan's grandson).  And Kelric, for all his willingness to joke around with his younger mates, seems to have the situation well in hand.

As for the goat milking, I have to admit that was my chore when I was a teen, and Gemina's teaching method was exactly how my father taught me before he let me loose in a goat pen.  (He wanted to ensure I wouldn't actually hurt the critters in my first fumbling attempts to milk one.)  It wasn't until a few years later, when the topic of "odd job skills" happened to come up at work and I tried to show that milking technique to a male co-worker, that his Javan-like stifled laughter reaction to the lesson clued me in that the hand motion was not putting him in mind of goats....  :-[

As for organs, did they have keyboard organs as early on as the early 12th Century?  I know organs existed even in Ancient Greece, but I was of the impression that those were water and wind powered, and that true keyboards didn't come about until at least the 1300s.  I could be wrong, though; it's not something I've really researched that deeply.  Thinking back to my vinyl LPs of medieval music, I'm recalling the portative and the hurdy-gurdy (I think that has a bellows and keyboard system?), though harpsichord, virginals and the like didn't come about until the Renaissance, I don't think, and pianos come some time after those.

So just ignore that piano in the corner of Mirjana's portrait; that's really..um...a sideways harp in a large soundbox, played with hammered rather than plucked strings.  Yeah.  That's my story, and I'm sticking to it.  Never know what those Torenthi instrument makers will get up to....   ;)

And as for Gemina, she's full of stories.  Just on the drive home from work yesterday, I discovered that she'll end up marrying a miller's son named Will, a nice enough chap who might be no Javan Haldane, but could maybe pass for him slightly in the dark if one doesn't look too closely, and they'll end up having several children, including a son named "Richard" and she's currently pleading her case for a "Javan"....   ;D  She's also fairly well educated for a village maid, able to read and write, though she has little time to practice either, and her father still owns a tome or two left over from the days when he was a young seminarian, thinking about joining the priesthood until he met a really cute chestnut-haired, blue-eyed village wench who ended up becoming Gemina's mother....   ;D
« Last Edit: September 16, 2010, 10:52:52 am by Evie »
"In necessariis unitas, in non-necessariis libertas, in utrisque caritas."

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Offline Elkhound

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Re: The Rustic Prince
« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2010, 11:46:45 am »
So just ignore that piano in the corner of Mirjana's portrait; that's really..um...a sideways harp in a large soundbox, played with hammered rather than plucked strings.  Yeah.  That's my story, and I'm sticking to it.  Never know what those Torenthi instrument makers will get up to....   ;)

Perhaps a more accurate description would be "an experimental variant on the hammered dulcimer."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hammered_dulcimer

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cimbalom

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Santur
« Last Edit: September 16, 2010, 02:00:05 pm by Elkhound »

Offline AnnieUK

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Re: The Rustic Prince
« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2010, 11:53:10 am »
Quote
and possibly a lot more brag than action

or as the British saying goes, "all mouth and trousers".  I had occasion to introduce Alkari to this expression a few weeks ago in a fanfic context, and I do like it.

Offline Elkhound

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Re: The Rustic Prince
« Reply #9 on: September 16, 2010, 02:00:51 pm »
Quote
and possibly a lot more brag than action

or as the British saying goes, "all mouth and trousers".  I had occasion to introduce Alkari to this expression a few weeks ago in a fanfic context, and I do like it.

"All hat and no cattle," as they say in Texas.

 

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