Post by Lillian Gray on Jul 2, 2014 18:19:07 GMT -6
"Please, stop calling me that?" Alexander turned around and sighed. Would she ever learn to just call him by his name in the future? It wouldn't look good if she only called him 'highness' for the rest of his life. It would never settle any equality issues if the titles were still in place.
He backtracked and looked down at the floor. There were a few spots of dust from Jocelyn, but nothing that wouldn't come out. Alexander scrubbed it with the toe of his boot and left it like that.
"If you would like to take a bath, that can be arranged, yes." He didn't comment on the dirt, because it didn't matter. The Prince called a maid forward and she bounded happily to him.
"Yessir?" She asked, beaming. There wasn't a title in her sentence, just as Alexander preferred in the privacy of his home.
"Would you help Jocelyn with her bath?" Alexander asked, the girl nodded excitedly.
"Sure!" She smiled and reached out towards the coal covered girl. "Right this way, Miss Jocelyn."
Post by Sansa Stark on Jul 2, 2014 19:05:20 GMT -6
"I--ah, yes. I'm sorry, Your--Alexander." It felt strangely unwelcoming to speak to royalty so unceremoniously, but she supposed since slaves never mingled with such an upper class it wouldn't take long to adjust. Jocelyn gave a pitiful bow and followed the maid towards an elaborate bathroom of marble and granite, a massive tub in the center more befitting the entire castle rather than the royal chambers of a single prince. It reminded her of the bath houses back home, though much more rich and made of hard surfaces instead of weak wood, where the community would bathe whenever they could find the time during a week of hard work. Thinking about it made her feel less and less comfortable, and oddly enough, she wished more and more to return to her dull life. At least that was safer than laying in the lion's den.
Jocelyn lowered her head to the maid as was expected of her. "My lady," she told her, "you do not have to help me bathe if you don't want to. I'm sure a woman of your status has plenty of other things to attend to besides bathing a slave. I am happy to serve you in any way I can."
To not recite such customs would mean punishment. If word somehow got to the king of her rudeness...
Post by Lillian Gray on Jul 2, 2014 19:24:27 GMT -6
"Oh please." The blonde waved her hand dismissively towards the girl. "Jocelyn, darling, anything you say here? No one will know. Alexander allows all of his servants to speak their mind here! You don't have to be so polite."
The maid skipped over to the tub and started the water, steam bursting from the small puddle forming against the marble surface. She liked the work, liked her Prince, she never felt like she had to really work here in the room.
"My name is Hannah." The girl beamed back at Jocelyn, not even bothering to bow to the future princess. If Alexander didn't want the maids to bow, surely he'd stick to the rule in from of his future bride. "I'm doing more than bathe you, silly, I'm helping you get ready. You're to meet the public soon!"
Post by Sansa Stark on Jul 2, 2014 19:42:47 GMT -6
The maid had a perfect everything from what Jocelyn could tell. Blond ringlets extending to her mid-back, a voluptuous figure, dimples, a smile as bright as the sun. Why hadn't the prince married her instead of a soot-covered slave with a health condition? He doesn't even know about that yet, Jocelyn remembered as she shyly began to remove her clothing. I wouldn't even make a good slave bride, let alone a royal one.
"Do I have to face the king?" she asked, coyly covering her breasts with her arms, though they were too dirty to be properly seen anyway. "Will he be there? He'll laugh at how terribly unroyal I am, Lady Hannah. I can't even curtsy properly."
It was humiliating. She was bought, sold, not even for a price, and now she was to be paraded before the country that would send assassin after assassin to end her life.
No one likes a slave, was the saying she would surely keep hearing.
Post by Lillian Gray on Jul 2, 2014 20:06:34 GMT -6
"Why do you care what the King thinks?" Hannah asked, a smile still slapped on her face. Sadness was an impossibility. With Alexander as her Prince, she was treated well, her family received extra benefits, and the girl didn't even have to be proper. It wasn't the King Jocelyn should have worried about, he didn't think his own wife's curtsy was proper.
Hannah ushered Jocelyn into the steaming tub and poured a small bottle into the water, bubbles foamed at the surface and the air smelled lightly of vanilla. One of the Prince's favorite things in all the world, Hannah was trying to push them along. The servant girl seemed tense, and Alexander seemed lost.
She thought it might help.
"There are people who will love you, and people who won't. It can't be helped. Do try to be yourself." Hannah encouraged.
Post by Sansa Stark on Jul 2, 2014 20:27:53 GMT -6
She doesn't understand. She's a commoner most likely, raised in a spacious home with sturdy walls and food in their fridges and family that was always together. She has had luxury, She does not live a life of fear.
The scent of vanilla seemed to calm Jocelyn. It was her mother's favorite, and when she had earned enough wages to purchase a candle, it was always of such a scent, and she would light it every day during the Peace Week. The family would eat a special stew fresh off the fire while the scent of dessert lingered around them. When ten grown adults came together for a family event, they had all saved up enough to buy each other one small gift. On good years, there would be enough to purchase ingredients for a pie or a cake, and then the scents of vanilla would be real and fresh and lacking artificial ingredients. Those were fond memories that Jocelyn had, and she would have to keep them close, as the king would never allow her to partake in a Peace Week again.
Carefully, she began to scrub the dirt and soot from her body, revealing porcelain skin and a fragile frame.
"...do you think the people will rise against this marriage?" Jocelyn asked curiously, struggling not to add a "my lady" to the end of her question. "Do you truly think the king would allow it?"
Post by Lillian Gray on Jul 2, 2014 20:36:31 GMT -6
Hannah hesitated before she answered. There was no use hiding it from her. "Yes. There will be some who oppose it."
As for the King? That was another matter entirely. No one was really sure what he wanted outside of keeping the classes separate. That, and keeping his power to himself. He never set forth any public projects or took a stance on any political affairs, an awful King really, staying so distant from his people.
"The King has already allowed it, however, in his heart I don't believe he's happy with it at all." Hannah sighed. "It was a huge deal between Alexander and the King, that he could only marry someone of noble class. Alexander said no. He didn't love the woman who'd been picked."
Fearing she'd revealed too much, Hannah bowed politely. It wasn't uncommon knowledge, but it was still very personal.
"Can I do anything for you? We have other scents, soaps, oils, anything really."
Post by Sansa Stark on Jul 2, 2014 20:57:28 GMT -6
If love held such a value to the prince, then why did he pick her? Or was it merely to save her eyesight from the hands of the king? Had that been the case, it meant Prince Alexander had given up finding love so that a slave girl could see. The realization came with the tiniest wave of guilt. Perhaps I shouldn't treat him cruelly, or fear him so. Perhaps.
"I have nothing to wear," she admitted to Hannah as she finished rinsing hazelnut locks. "Could I trouble you for something to dress myself with? I don't suppose the prince should see me like this until our wedding night..."
Jocelyn gulped. Wedding night. Her mother had explained everything such a night entails before she left for the Mining District, but such thoughts hadn't come to the slave girl in quite some time.
Post by Lillian Gray on Jul 2, 2014 21:23:49 GMT -6
"Already taken care of." Hannah said happily. She clasped her hands together with glee and held them up by her face. "Alexander had ordered several different sizes for his bridge to be. So no need to wear my silly rags."
Not so much rags. Hannah was fortunate enough to be born in a higher caste, with a little more money. Still, what the Prince had prepared for her was beyond what a slave girl could expect, she had to guess that much.
"I'll go get you something, you stay here, alright?" Hannah waved her hand towards Jocelyn and stepped towards the door. "I'm sure you'd like to stay hidden under the bubbles for a while, right?" She giggled, it was only a joke.
Post by Sansa Stark on Jul 2, 2014 21:57:20 GMT -6
It took her a second to understand the humor, but when she did Jocelyn found herself breaking the smallest of smiles. It was nice to have Hannah around, she decided, despite the clear difference in class level and upbringing. She watched blonde hair disappear behind giant red doors, and slipped further unto the warm water, enjoying a real bath for the first time in her memory.
A princess, she thought, terrified. It was a kind of commitment no slave could serve, a role in a story with dragons and gallant knights instead of a reality. That was her reality now. There were no knights or mythical creatures, only laughter and daggers and a political system that didn't work. Jocelyn hadn't noticed when Hannah returned into the bathroom with a fresh change of clothes, due to her face being buried in her hands.