Saturday, June 22, 2013

Marchant, Orb's Year 925-928

Orb's Year 925
Baji was swamped with self-doubt.  Since his father died, he just didn't seem to be able to make ends meet.  It was hard putting on a brave face when he was so scared of failing. 

He'd had to borrow money  for the last tax collection.  He'd been short 9,000 gold pieces!  It seemed that no matter how hard he worked, he never got ahead...

He wasn't sure how much longer he could hold it all together...
If they lost the business, they would lose all the benefits associated with their class...  they'd be little more than peasants with sable hair...

***

Darius wasn't about to let Devon Taveryn go without a fight!   Staring in the mirror, he practiced his speech for all the reasons they belonged together!
"Thank you for coming..." Darius began, eager to launch into his speech.

"Make it quick. I don't want your Mother to see me here," she scowled, crossing her arms.
"The thing is... I love you, Devon.  I can't imagine living without you.  My Mother doesn't matter.  Your Mother doesn't matter.  We can go move off to some other kingdom if that's what we want."
Moving closer, he grabbed her hand and continued, "...The important thing is that we'd be doing it together..."  he trailed off awkwardly. Cursed Orb, he thought frantically, I've forgotten the rest of my speech!
Devon felt her heart flutter.  "Do you truly mean it Darius? That's what you really want."

Darius smiled.  "It is.  I would battle all the Mothers in the world for your hand in marriage!"
"What is she doing here?" Alana screeched as she ran outside.  Pointing her finger at Devon, she yelled, "Get that Taveryn off my property!"

Darius tucked Devon behind him as he turned to face his Mother.  "No."
"What do you mean 'no'?" Alana barked as she poked Darius in the chest.  She was outraged that her son invite that... that... Taveryn onto her property!  "She has bad blood!"
Darius pushed back at his Mother.  "She's not going anywhere! And she doesn't have bad blood just because her father is a Taveryn any more than I have bad blood because I am your son!"

Alana gasped.  She was incensed! "How dare you! You illegitimate half-class!" she shrieked.  Sputtering outrage, she whirled around and ran back inside.
Darius wrapped his trembling arms around Devon and buried his head in her neck while Devon attempted to soothe him.  Softly, she told him, "You said you would battle all the Mothers in the world for me, but let us hope that we need only battle one..."

Darius couldn't help it, he let out a laugh and tugged Devon tighter.  "I love you Devon Taveryn."

***

Baji was helping his daughter, Farha, complete her instructional work that evening when Alana burst back through the door, almost running them over.
"Do you know who your brother is outside with?" she demanded.  Not giving him a moment to reply, she shrieked, "Devon Taveryn!  I will not allow my child to align himself with a Taveryn!"
"Enough!" Baji ordered when his Mother drew a breath to begin a tirade.  "You will not meddle with their affairs!"

Alana pressed on, "But..."

Baji wouldn't hear it.  "No! We will not have this discussion.  If you continue to act like a harpy, then I will send you to the Abbey! This family has never fared well under your decision making!"

Alana crossed her arms and glowered, "Fine! I won't say a word! My own children turning on me in my old age!" Huffing, she walked to the spare bedroom and slammed the door.
Baji shook his head, worried about his mother.  The older she got, the more she seemed to hold a grudge against everyone!

"Daddy? Is Grandma alright?" Farha asked timidly behind him.

Baji hugged his daughter.  "Everything's okay.  Sometimes your grandma is just not well..." Baji attempted to explain.

Orb's Year 926
If her children thought they did better without her, then so be it!  Alana stuck her nose in the air and ignored her children, refusing to have anything to do with them!
Not that her children seemed to care!  They didn't even set out a plate for her at meal-time!
"Happy birthday, Darius!" Farha gleefully cheered as Darius blew out the candles atop the cake. 
"Thank you, Farha.  You are such a sweet girl!" Darius said, giving his niece a kiss on top of her head. 
Cursed Orb, Alana gasped when she saw Darius.  Even looking at her children these days made her seethe with rage for the way her life had turned out!

Baji, Barika & Caira were the spitting image of their father, Amar Marchant, a man twice her age that she was forced to marry when she was young.  Darius had the look of his father, Trent Noble, the young rake that had piqued her desire.  Then there was Eryka, the child of Brand Taveryn, the reprobate that stole her heart and callously set her aside for his wife

Turning her head, she glanced at the wall, ignoring their laughter and cheer.

Orb's Year 927
Darius was excited.  He'd invited Devon and her older brother over in an attempt to get to know them better.  Baji promised to send his Mother to the market so she wouldn't be around to muck anything up.
Darius placed a chaste kiss on Devon's cheek.  "Where is your brother?" he asked. 

Devon rolled her eyes and motioned towards the walkway.  "Over there. He seems to have lost the way to the house."

"Lost the way?" Darius asked, confused.  Glancing over, he saw Brand kissing his love, Christa. "Ah! I see. Well perhaps we should go inside and hope they find their way inside!"

"Some chaperons!" Devon grumbled cheerfully.
Soon after, a blushing Christa and a smug Brand made their way inside.  Darius had never spent much time with Brand before, but found him to be quite friendly!  It was so nice to have people over and not worry about his mother making a scene and embarrassing him!

Eryka was enjoying the experience as well!
But. she only had eyes for Juan Ferrar.  She wondered if it would shock him very much if she kissed him...
Her mother always told her she had bad blood... perhaps she should begin living up to her low expectation....


Orb's Year 928
Darius was incredibly nervous to have the infamous Brand Taveryn in his house.  He wasn't sure what to expect. 

"Let's cut to the chase," Brand blurted out as they sat down.  "You want to marry my Devon."

"Yes sir," Darius answered.  "I love her very much."

"Well...you'll treat her well and be faithful to her?" Brand asked.

"Of course!" Darius said, annoyed that Brand had the gall to talk about respecting a woman.  As far as he knew, Brand hadn't been faithful to any woman a day in his life!
Standing up, Brand announced, "Well, that's all I need to hear, boy.  You've my blessing." Darius jumped up and shook hands with Brand.

"Truly?" he asked, awed that it had been so simple! 

"Of course! My daughter loves you.  And she told me how you fought your shrew of a mother for her hand.  Seems to me that you'll do fine by her!" Brand said, pleased with his decision.  Hesitating a moment, he added, "Do not make the same mistakes that I have made."

Darius cleared his throat, feeling awkward.

Brand laughed heartily at his discomfort, "Well, I decided one day that if I couldn't be a good example, I might as well be a down-right dastardly one!"
As soon as Brand walked through the door whistling, Devon ran over to Darius and threw her arms around him.  "I can't believe it! We're to be wed!"
"Congratulations, brother," Baji said to Darius, clapping him on the shoulder.  "May the Orb bless  you!"

The family circled around Darius to offer him and Devon their congratulations.  All except one...

***

The shop was bustling these days.  And it was good because of the extra money it brought in...
...but it was wearisome to be salesman, stocker and cashier all in one. 
Manning the shop alone drained all of Baji's energy...
Farha breezed into the shop and looked around.  It looked like a few things needed to be restocked since they'd been sold.  Father was busy... perhaps she could help out.
Baji stopped what he was doing when he noticed his daughter in the shop selling the crate to Cade Farmer.  She was a natural, he thought proudly. 
He saw so much of her mother in her...
Late that night when the family was asleep, Baji went outside to talk to Alicia once more.  He laid fresh flowers by her grave and picked a few weeds as he chatted with her about what was happening.  He told her all about Darius becoming betrothed to Devon and Farha growing up beautiful and whip-smart.
"Daddy?"

Standing up quickly, Baji saw his daughter behind him.  He hadn't heard her coming.  She must think him silly for talking to the cold stone, but to him...

"Don't worry.  I come out and talk to her, too," Farha leaned forward to whisper.

Baji hugged his daughter tightly. 

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