Would You Like Ice With That?

I worry about Aoibheann sometimes.  Actually, I worry about her rather a lot, but occasionally, her behaviour gets a little stranger than normal.  Last night for example; I was serving, hold the front page, a customer, when Aoibheann attempted to creep in unnoticed.  She was still clad in her hospital gown, so I assume she had come in search of clothing, but she froze at the bottom of the stairs as if afraid to go up there.  I thought she was maybe shy about going up in her semi-clad state so assured her that the upstairs rooms were empty, devoid of any visitors or guests.  She wouldn’t have it, though, and this was where it got strange; she turned around, and claimed, in a very bad imitation of a French accent, that she had just remembered she had an urgent appointment elsewhere.  Given that is a phrase I have often heard Brigitte use before disappearing off on some other errand, I did wonder if maybe Aoibheann had bitten her too, and just as quickly dismissed that as ridiculous.  For the moment, I am going to blame whatever medication Anna has her on, but it is a little worrying, nevertheless.

The new customer went by the name of Murphy.  She was young, and mostly human-looking, if it wasn’t for the large white wings.  She was rather shy and it took some coaxing to get her to come into the tavern.  With a bit more coaxing, she ordered some milk, but when I poured it for her, we ran into a problem.  As soon as she touched the glass, the milk started to freeze. Now that, I have seen before in various, for want of a better word, species.  I thought perhaps an elemental of some sort, although I don’t recall seeing one of those with wings, or possibly a denizen of one of the colder fae realms.  She looked a little disappointed with what had happened, muttering that it wasn’t fair, so I poured her another glass and wrapped this one in one of the bar towels.  That seemed to do the trick, for which she was grateful, if a little surprised.  I explained that this wasn’t the first time I had encountered this problem. She had the look of a new arrival, so told her a little about the place.  She did not remember much about her journey, but did remember the boatman when I mentioned him.  She did not look as though it had been the best of journeys, for there were fresh scars on her chest and shoulders, which looked as though she had lost an argument with a gorse bush, or possibly a cat.  She kept touching them as though they were hurting still.  I didn’t like to interfere, and I did not know here Anna was, so I warmed up some water on the brazier and offered it to her with some clean cloths, so she could clean up if she wished.  I didn’t think I had done anything to spook her, but she suddenly jumped off the bar stool and scuttled off, saying she would be back later.  Maybe she had an urgent appointment too.

That was the extent of the excitement for the evening.  I did consider going up to the palace to see if Alec was in, but decided against it.  Aoibheann had run off in that direction for her ‘urgent appointment’, so I figured he might have his hands full.  I took myself back to the flat instead and jotted down some more ideas for the “Black Friars”.



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