Back in the GHE:SW

“Now sling your hook or I’ll break your neck!”

Leafsong slammed the front door enthusiastically, her cheeks scarlet. Analith, who loved it when his mother got a face like a tomato, let out a delighted cackle and clapped his chubby palms together. She scooped him up and deposited him beside Mirae in the pile of as-yet unsorted hessian sacks crumpled in the corner. Mirae shot a disapproving look at her brother, then resumed chewing on her fistful of sungrass. A moment later, the door to the back room creaked open an inch, two pale eyes squinting warily into the main shop front. Leafsong jerked her head irritably, inhaling deeply in an attempt to calm herself.

“You can come out. You better not ‘ave pocketed nothing.”
“Who was that poor soul, and what had he done to cause such appalling rudeness? ” A slender Kaldorei man slid around the partially-opened door and navigated his way across the cluttered floor, perching on the edge of the counter. Rubbing his fingers over an unshaved chin, he arched a brow at the tall, agitated girl.

“City commerce representative. They want to upgrade this branch from ‘small‘ business category to ‘medium’ business category” Leafsong hissed, with venom usually reserved for the tax collector. The flush gradually spread from her face, down her neck, to her chest.

Faelnor shrugged a shoulder elegantly, brushing his fingers over the dusty countertop.

“Isn’t that a good thing? Means that you’re making a good income.”

“Do we look like a medium sized business, cousin?!”

Leafsong spread her skinny arms in entreaty, her eyebrows quivering, encompassing the cramped shopfront; the sacks piled in every corner; the precarious stacks of crates which lined the walls; the vials and jars packed onto every flat surface.With an outraged huff, her finger swung over to an upturned box, carefully placed at the foot of the stairs. As Faelnor slid himself along the counter to view the contents of the container, he was surprised to find two newborns sleeping soundly in a woollen blanket.

“We don’t even have room for another crib upstairs. My babies are sleepin’. In a BOX.” Leafsong spat, her fingers curling in rage. The ferocity of her tone awoke Loredar, who opened silvery eyes and eyeballed his mother in vague alarm. She immediately rearranged her features into a comforting, if slightly fixed, smile, and wriggled her fingers at the infant. Loredar, reassured, closed his eyes once more; and Leafsong’s smile mutated into a vicious snarl as she swung back round to face Faelnor.

“This is not a medium sized business. I bet those fuc- those fiends at the Stormwind Herb Company reported me! They’ve hated me ever since those rumours started about them diluting all their potions with murloc urine to lower costs. They don’t even know that was me!”

Faelnor rolled his eyes at her soundlessly, clearly uninterested in the politics of petty business rivalry. Crooking a long finger, he drew her attention to a roll of parchment discreetly slid from the pocket of his cloak. She paused in her ranting, her eyes sliding over to his.

“What’s that?”
“Come here.”
What is it?”
“Just take a look.”

She stared at him stubbornly, her pale expression unreadable. They gazed at one another for a moment, before he relented and waved his fingers, lightly.

“It’s a commission, alright?”

Her eyes widened and she brought her hands defensively up to her chest for a moment, tugging at the grubby collar of her threadbare shirt. Mirae let out a gurgle and she bent over, kissing the little girl on the soft crown of her head. A moment later she turned back to face Faelnor, her brow furrowed.

“I ain’t doing it. I’m too busy.”
“Your father sent me.”
“Why can’t Ban or Lolli do it?”
“Your brothers are occupied with the Steamwheedle negotiations. You know that, cousin. They’re not available.”

She stared at him helplessly for a moment, her fingers working at the hemline of her shirt.

“What about my pa, then? Why can’t he do it?”

Faelnor picked up a stuffed saber doll, turning it over in his hands idly as he fixed her with his pale gaze, so similar to her own. The ear was chewed and hanging by a string; he began to methodically tug at the exposed stuffing.

“Don’t be ridiculous. My uncle is a busy man, and he expects his children to do their part for the family business. You’re a Gladefall, aren’t you?”

She scowled at him, stepping over and extracting the saber doll from his hands. “Of course I am.”

He waited for a moment, the corner of his mouth tugging upward in a knowing smile. Finally, she hissed through her teeth, squeezing the saber in a death grip. “Show me.”

Out of habit, Faelnor glanced about to check that no-one was in earshot. Gesturing her closer, he unrolled the parchment and grinned, waiting for a response. Inadvertently, Leafsong sucked in her cheeks in admiration, her eyes widening. Faelnor grinned at her savagely as she snatched the parchment, holding it up to the suspended lantern to peruse it more thoroughly.

“Nice, isn’t it? I knew a girl wouldn’t be able to resist a piece of jewellery like that.”

She scowled without moving her eyes from the image, her head tilting to the side. “I don’t care about that. I care about how much it’s worth.”

He threw his head back in a laugh, reaching out to rub her wrist in an over-familiar manner.

“There’s a streak of goblin in you wider than the Southfury River, cousin.”

She slapped his fingers away irritably, allowing the parchment to curl back into its original form before tucking it into the pocket of her trousers.

“You’ve got what you want. You can leave now” she muttered, turning her back on him and hunching her shoulders

He smiled at her once more, enjoying her discomfort. “Just saying farewell to my little nieces and nephews.”

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3 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Aphel said,

    Stupid contracts, distracting Leafsong from her everyday life! Albeit, Aphel spend a lot of time managing his military.

  2. 2

    Tylandra said,

    I love your entries. The quality of your writing just keeps getting better and better! 😮

    *jealousy*

    • 3

      Leafsong said,

      AWWW thank you!!! I’m so undeserving of that compliment xD I have good days and bad days with my writing, sometimes I write something that is absolute crap and I’m just like eh f- it


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