for [ profile] mini_nanowrimo. A direct follow-up to yesterday, and more of the Brewster's character


The novitiate sagged, and drew a hand over his eyes.

"You," the Brewster rounded on the young aughisky, "I am sending to a sheepfold. If you want to bugger the unwilling, you can make do with sheep. You might be gored by a ram, but I won't lose useful workstock.

"Get the young idiot out of here!"

Turnspit gasped at the roiling influence the lord threw off. The sudden pressure inside his head hurt. A few of the kitchen hands grabbed the novitiate and hustled him out the door, unmindful of his yelps and broken arm.

Then the Brewster turned back to him. She crouched down before Turnspit. He shivered, feeling her presence as she turned her regard on him, a cold oil smeared over his skin. She touched his cheek until he met her eyes – pale and brilliant and wintery. Then she reached out, pulled his shirt to rights, and sighed.

"You are entirely too attractive, little eyas. And an accomplished killer." Brewster looked up to Verdigris. "He's sired no kids among the workstock, I hope?"

Verdigris startled, then shook her head. "I don't think so, no. He's been shy; sometimes it takes a while for wild humans to tame and settle."

"That's good, then. I would to hate to drown his get, but he's bad blood. All right, kitchen head, I'll not have him starved in the courtyard. He's been wronged and no doubt someone," the aughisky looked around pointedly at the watching kitchen hands, "would slip him poison if I did order him starved."

The Lord straightened and placed her hand on Turnspit's head. He shivered at her touch, feeling the invasive cold so strongly that he came over with gooseflesh.

"He goes to the Brocks as part of the levy. They can keep him forever, as clockwork." Brewster dropped her hand, confirming her condemnation.

Dismay rippled through the kitchen staff, a wave of appalled murmurs.

"Lord..." Verdigris began.

"He's killed aughisky. He was wronged, but I'll have no yellowbuck workstock with death in his blood under my hand. Let the Brocks deal with them. No doubt they'll enjoy the challenge.

"Take him to the west stables for now. Lock him into one of the reinforced box-stalls. The levy leaves in a twelve, and I want him alive to go with it. Do you hear me?" the Lord growled. At the round of unhappy agreement, she snorted.

"Now go!"

Turnspit was hauled to his feet, and they went.

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