Lys: Blessings All Mine, With Ten Thousand Beside

Aithne stayed close to Cathair all through the service and after they left. She thought it might seem overly-romantic to some, but mainly it was simply a wish to stay near the closest source of heat. And it didn't seem as though anyone was taking it amiss... Hopefully the afternoon would bring warmer weather- it usually did this time of year- but until then, she stuck with Cathair.

Halfway back to the villa, Portia came up and took her arm. "Time you came with me, Aithne."
Cathair looked at her, then at Aithne, confused and curious. Aithne smiled up at him. "You'll never guess. Portia has offered me her warm things- she's getting too big for them now. Isn't it wonderful? An answer to prayer."

Cathair found himself having to swallow down sudden pride, balking at the idea of taking charity from one of Lord Ambrosius's servants. But Aithne was right- it was an answer to prayer. And there was nothing wrong in it. The wrong would be in scorning a gift from a fellow Christian. So he smiled as genuinely as he could, thanking her with a nod. "You two best be off, then. I'll find something with which to occupy myself, meantimes."

Aithne gave him a quick kiss on the cheek and went off with the woman, who was already chattering about various things beyond a man's ken.


"Ooooh!" Aithne, already robed in a saffron wool gown with long, warm sleeves, admired the various bits and pieces Portia pulled out for her. She'd protested some of them- pregnancy did not make one too big for a decorative comb, for instance- but Portia had shushed her, as usual, and eventually she decided to simply accept with a smile that which was given her. It was obvious Portia delighted in the whole affair.
Aithne now had two warm gowns, an underdress of brownish-red - not nearly as brilliant as the Guttersnipe's, but still prettier than what Aithne was used to of late, a girdle, a huge shawl, a pair of socks, and warm, fur-lined shoes. It was all serviceable stuff- nothing fancy save for a splash or two of color, but Aithne felt like a princess.

"One more thing. And I'll take no protests, so you may as well save your breath." She reached into the bottom of the trunk and pulled out a beautiful linen gown of damson-purple. Not the expensive type that came from Rome. No, this was a darker shade, a British shade, made from sturdy British fruit. It was worked with fancy stitching around the neck and wrists and hem, and there was a belt to match.

Aithne's breath caught at the sight of it. "It's beautiful..." she breathed. Portia smiled modestly. "It was my wedding-gown. I made it, as I imagine you made yours, back in Eire?" Aithne nodded slightly. "It was mine, and now it is yours. I grew out of it before even began growing, but it should fit you fine." She set the gown down and took the girl's hand. "We're your family now, and here we look after our own. I won't see a member of my clan married in her work clothes when I have a perfectly good gown for her."

Aithne was in tears. Happy, but crying at the blessings heaped on her at once. She wiped her eyes, laughing a little as Portia held the dress up to her. "Oh, Aithne... it goes beautifully with your eyes... Cathair won't be able to take his eyes off you."

Aithne blushed and laughed again.

1 comment:

Lilly said...


*coughIlikepurplecough* And I was a well written scene! I love!

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