It was the strangeness of the missive that tempted Evienne. It had been so out of place, so worn, the penmanship so negligible-- so vulgar that it drew her. And upon that missive, that was huffed at by Papa, was but a command. The tone so absurdly demanding it must’ve been laughed at in parlors and studies alike.
The late Lady Uldwar would’ve scoffed at it.
The Lady Goldcourt-Uldwar should’ve burned it.
The words shouldn’t have lodged themselves so deeply into her mind; it was the musings of a mad man. One of many planning to sow discord in a land made so vulnerable, a vulture upon a noble carcass. A herald of folly, of nothing but destruction, mindless- terrible destruction. A tale to be observed, as one does at the opéra, snickering between lamentation of the lives, such tender lives, lost so carelessly.
And so, Evienne might’ve just done if a spider, hadn’t whispered to her of profit to be reaped from this destruction. It was, after all, such a sweet solace, it had been argued, to draw from such an ugly thing.
Folly, but if played just right, greatly rewarding. She would go, there was no one that could dissuade her of heeding the vulgar missive.
Still, she waited a week. And then another, till she could settle upon just the perfect excuse for dear Papa.
In the end, it was the salt, that allowed her to visit Port Moon. She had been told, it, among a myriad of other solutions would be good for her. Would ease the sorrow of a tableful of slumped bodies. The salt, apparently, would scour away the knowledge that one was solely to be blamed for the death of a clan. Every Man, Woman- even the children.
What a pity, indeed, that Evienne Goldcourt had been made a widow at such a tender age. A tragedy that was sweetened by the sizable properties her husband had settled on her, and yet she had felt too burdened to account for what was left.
Those letters, certificates and notices lay on her desk, still as the hands cradled in her lap. Untouched, and veiled in a blanket of widow’s weeds.
They were wrong, as they were about a great many things. The salt did not revive her spirits, it only add annoyance to her apathy, and a wrinkle between her brows. Still, she did little but sit still, sew and sleep the entire journey. Relying only on gestures for her companions to follow through on her demand.
Even as her carriage rolled to a stop upon the dock, it was a fair while before any reaction could be elicited from her. Evienne was but marble structure whose flesh was washed and knit back together, but offered neither a nod of her head or a twitch of fingers- still grey and red.
It was only when his fingers grazed pellucid skin, that seemed to jostle her out of the strange hollow reverie. Still, the simple action of readjusting her gaze felt heavy, leaden. Only a small smile could be afforded to the foundling at her side.
A dark skinned boy, no more than a decade old. One who still despised the cravat around his neck, and often fussed with it. She had called him Henry, after Godric’s brother- he didn’t seem to mind.
“There’s a commotion outside, Lady Uldwar.” The dry tone of his voice betrayed the impish curl of his lip. Evienne couldn’t help but mimic it.
Surely, she came to cause a stir herself, especially as she was to still be in mourning, screened from all the world. There was no hesitation in folding herself out of the vehicle, a blight upon the colorful, tanned creatures milling about them.
Thus reassured, the Lady couldn’t help but raise dubious eyebrow at the state of the vessel. It rocked wickedly, oily water snaking down its sides- raining unfortunate paserbys in a hiss of salt water. Worse still, was the sound of shrill screams, thuds and the cries of some unfortunate sailors.
Surely, she couldn’t be prevailed upon to embark on such an odious task? Her foot man, however, seemed just as reluctant as she. He stepped half a step back, and then, amusingly enough- another two at a particularly violent thud.
It would fall onto the boy, then.
He breezed past her skirts with nary a smile, hand clasped behind a white suit. Already braver than either servant or woman, reinforced with the promise of the sack of glazed hazelnuts she tossed into his lap.
Still, a curious little pit formed in her stomach as he ambled up the gangplank, and bellowed without pause, for all to hear, even her: “The Lady Goldcourt-Uldwar is awaiting a reception.”