Today was a better day for writing so I hit my new 30k goal without too much trouble, so up the goal goes again. We’re starting to get into the really serious endgame plot stuff and I’ve passed the 60k mark in the draft as a whole.
I need to come up with a name for a certain character’s father but I can’t be bothered doing it right now, so I’m just gonna keep calling him “the jeweller.” I probably would’ve named him early on if I’d realised he’d show up again while drafting originally, but I only had a partial outline at that point and finished outlining after I’d written a whole chunk of stuff. So *shrugs*
#WIPjoy day 10: Dish about a favourite side character! What role do they play? Why do you love them?
Here’s today’s excerpt. The character Inira is one of Eira’s friends and informants. She’s a serving girl in an out-of-the-way tavern Eira, Huntsman, Tesana, Argyle and Farlan are hiding in for the night.
Inira returns to populate the table with heavenly-smelling dishes. I’m already mentally tasting the smoked salmon dish and the spiced mushroom and leek broth. There’s an onion and egg pie that I wouldn’t mind eating, too—I find eggs less weird to eat than chickens themselves. There’s also a venison dish, but I’m not going to touch that. From the look on Tesana’s face, she’s of the same mind.
We crowd around the table while Inira sets out plates and bowls and cutlery, the full covert rich person treatment. We start ladling and cutting out our portions.
“We have a new shipment of wine, just in from our friends across the brine,” she says, deliberately setting my knife askew. “I’m sure the boss won’t notice if a bottle or two goes missing.”
“No, thank you,” Huntsman answers.
“Ooh, you’re all business tonight.” She bumps my shoulder with her hip. “I’m not used to that coming from this fine lady right here.”
“I’ll be back to my old tricks soon enough,” I reply. “Being serious all the time is so boring.”
“Well, the next time you feel like having a bit of fun, you know where to find me. Hah!” She pinches my cheek. “Don’t tire yourself out on all this seriousness, gorgeous.”
I grin up at her. “No promises. Give your brother my best.”
“Your best what?” She snickers behind her hand. “You never did give him that good time you promised him.”
“I believe my exact words were fuck you, I’m not stealing anything else until you pay your fee from the last time,” I reply. “Not my fault he took it as an invitation. Now that I think of it, he still owes me money. Don’t send him my best. Send him Huntsman.”
“I’m not getting involved in this,” Huntsman says, already halfway through his slice of pie.
“Smart man,” says Inira. “I best get back to work. Don’t have too much fun without—oh wait, you’re not having any fun at all.”
“While we’re being serious, could you get your brother to bring the black market jeweller here?” I ask. “We need to have a word with him, but no one can know he’s coming here.”
“We have a codeword,” Argyle says. “If he tells my father he prefers pearls over diamonds, he’ll know it’s me.”
“Good thinking,” I say. “Pretty please, Irina?”
“I’ve got you covered.” She blows me a kiss and heads out.
Tesana takes a prim little sip of broth from her spoon, before she sets it down and angles her body towards me. “So.”
“What the fae was all that about?”
“What do you—oh, right. The flirting.”
“Yes. The flirting.”
“For the record, I don’t want to be involved in this conversation, either,” Huntsman says. “Before you get any ideas.”
“She’s just a friend,” I promise Tesana. “The serving girls and errand boys of the city respond well to a bit of bawdiness that isn’t about to go anywhere out of their control. Makes a nice change from all the creepy sailors and self-important administrators they deal with on a daily basis. I’m not going to run off with anyone. I just like the wordplay. I promise.”
Tesana picks up her spoon and goes back to her meal, but she’s still upset. I can feel it coming off her in waves.
“I’ll tone it down in the future,” I tell her. “I love you.”
“I know,” she mutters, swirling her spoon through the broth.