Friday, 21 December 2012
05:08:14 PM (GMT)
With the solarsphere burning brightly in my window, I wake and begin my day. A
pink-haired, golden-eyed servant appears to serve me tea and pastries with artificial
cheese. He leaves, and another servant comes to help me bathe and dress. In my
private washroom, I sink into my round, gilded bathtub. The servant girl turns a
dial to heat the water to my preferred temperature, and pours a purple liquid into
the water. The liquid gives the water an orchid tint and a sweet smell. I wave to
her and she bows and leaves.
It occurs to me that I do not know her name. Servants are servants, not people so
much as machines, on a set schedule with set rules, and adorned with brightly colored
hair and eyes so that we have something nice to look at. I wonder what they think
When I am done bathing, the water drains, and glass panels slide into place,
enclosing the tub. Warm air wooshes down from above, drying me.
I step out, my hair a frizzy mass. I put on my corset, silk undergarments, and my
new dress. The dress is beautiful, long and golden, with tiny pearls and pastel blue
lace. The servant girl reappears and laces up the back for me, then I sit and she
begins coming my hair, getting it ready for the matching headdress.
"What is your name?" I ask her.
Her eyes widen. I don't usually ask questions to servants, let alone personal
"Leon of Ghypsy's Warfield named me Yazellia, miss," she says quietly, blue eyes
"My uncle named you?"
"I was.. a gift. From him, to you, on your sixteenth birthday. Don't you
I'm stunned. "No, no I don't," I say, looking her over. She's one of the servants
that I see often; her long, shiny blue hair is familiar to me. But Leon, giving her
to me? I don't remember it.
Later that day, I visit Leon's sky villa. I find him in his great room, having tea
with two servants; they are twins.
"Sharilet! Welcome! Come in, have some tea. It's peppermint. Very tasty," he calls,
holding out a cup to me.
I sit across from him on a soft, round lounge chair. One of the servants starts
nuzzling Leon's neck. He pushes her off gently. "Luvetica, please, not in front of
"Her name is Luvetica?" I ask, sipping my tea.
"Yes," he replies, pouring more for himself. "I enjoy naming servants."
"Did you name one 'Yazellia'?"
He sips thoughtfully before answering. "Yes, I believe so. But I don't know what I
did with that one."
"You gave her to me."
"Ah! Yes, that's right."
"Leon..." I begin, not sure if I can trust him, not sure if I can trust myself.
"Can I talk to you about something..." I look away, unable to hold his gaze. His eyes
are icy blue.
"Of course!" he says, standing. At his command, the twin servants vanish behind a
door, and he takes my wrist and leads me around the table, to sit with him on the
plush sofa. "You can tell me anything; you've always been my favorite niece." He
beams at me.
"Well.. I.. I've been having some trouble with nightmares."
His expression grows grave. "So it is you, then. You're the one who screams in the
I blush. "Yes, I suppose so. I'm just so very alone all the time. Maybe it's time
I get married. Father said that--"
"Enough. Never mind what your father said. You're not ready for marriage. You're
young and lonely, that's all. So why not get some company? Visit the clubs and the
dance halls, find someone to keep you company."
"Father would be furious.."
"Don't worry. I'll keep him distracted for tonight. He'll never know. You just enjoy
I consider this. "So I can just... Ask someone to come with me?"
"Of course you can. You're a princess! You can do whatever you like. You can have
whoever you like. Within reason, of course. Stay away from luminaries' sons. Most
of them have arranged marriages pending."
"Thank you, Leon," I say, smiling. I stand and curtsy.
"You're very welcome, my dear. Don't let your father tie you down with a husband too
soon. You're young. Have some fun. Meet new people. Play." He smiles.
I return the smile and hurry back to my father's villa.
"Sharilet? Are you here?" Mikou, my younger sister, sticks her head into my bedroom,
"Mikou! I'm here," I say. She is wearing an orange headdress that clashes with her
mint green hair.
"I heard you're gonna go to the clubs tonight?" she asks with a hopeful grin.
"New travels fast," I frown.
"Keylannah told me."
"Keylannah. My servant."
"That's a strange name."
"It's what her mom named her. On the Island. I let her keep it."
I frown. "Alright. Well. I'm thinking about going."
"Oh! Shari, you have to go! And you have to take me with you!" she exclaims, begging
me with her eyes, tugging on my arm.
"Are you crazy? I can't take you there. You're not allowed. I'm not even
"But you're going, aren't you?"
"Then let me come! Oh, please, won't you? There's going to be a music festival at
that Helena place."
"Yeah? Who's playing?"
"A bunch of people. You're favorite guy, the one with the long hair, he'll be
"And Monique Sinclair is going to be there! So you have to take me."
"Mikou, Monique Sinclair plays almost every night."
"So? I've never seen her. Take me!"
"You could just ask to have her come to you."
"But it's not the same as seeing her at a concert."
"Dad doesn't want you at the clubs."
"I don't really care what he wants," she says quietly, looking around as though
someone might hear her. "Please, just let me go with you."
I sigh. "Fine. On one condition."
"Change your headdress."
Last edited: 8 January 2013