Early Morning Tea

Title: Early Morning Tea
Time Period: January 22, 135 A.E.
Characters Appearing:

Summary: Two prostitutes come together in the common room at the Albatross, Isibeal and Maddock might be a little disappointed.

There was far too much drinking last night. Not enough to leave the night a blissful blank, though, which is both fortunate and… unfortunate. And as much as Mariah isn't usually one for making house calls (as it were), the morning finds her slipping out of the room currently booked by a sailor whose ship happens to be in port for a time. She closes the door softly behind her for a few reasons. Not wanting to wake the man left within and not wanting to worsen the pounding in her head are the foremost, however.

As she strolls into the main room, in the clothes she'd been wearing the day before, one hand clutches around a rather lovely looking necklace from some distant place and the other clutches her forehead. It's just a shame she doesn't actually reach the door, but has to drop herself into a chair somewhere in the middle. Just for a moment. Or… six.

Luna, on the other hand, is one for making house calls. Especially if the house belongs to her parents. Feeling very much the part of the daughter that Maddock thinks he ought to have instead of the one he's got, she slips through the door and spies Mariah straight off.

"Mariah Larke!" Exclaimed all too loudly, "What in the heavens are you doing here?" The small parcel she carries is laid on the table where she claims another seat. "You look a little green under the gills, care for a spot of tea or something? I have some with me, it'll make you feel right as rain." Because even though Luna thinks she's sobering up, she still needs something to take the edge off every once in a while.

It's Luna's loud voice, and the name that she calls out, that finally drags Cas' attention away from his inquiry with a man near one of the sides. A trader, most likely, and one who has something he's been sent to pick up from the bag over his shoulder. "Oh— uh— thank you again, sir. I see someone I know so, I'm going to— and I should get these back to the boss, too. Eh." He visibly struggles to find his words before finally settling on, "Bye."

Almost as soon as he's done talking, he stands and starts moving toward Mariah and Luna— and then stops midstep, pressing fingers against his mouth for a moment. At least his nose barely shows a sign of being broken anymore, aside from healing cuts and faint discoloration. But something else seems to have stopped him midstep. Maybe he should have accepted that drink earlier.

Moments later, Algernon pushes through the front door at a dragging nudge and sweep, boots and coat mottled with drying mud, collar and chops weather-roughened around the fringes. A simple sword has occupied the place of the usual truncheon at his belt.

Adventures in the night watch.

Eyes first on the bar, he's blearily quick to mark the presence of others already seated. Trade arrangements being made. Luna's friend.

The voice clamoring in his ears at said friend is placed.

Luna herself.

Impulse to exit back out again dismissed when he can't immediately think of any place better to go, he goes for broke and quietly resumes his slow plod along stage left, towards the stairs. And his bed.

The loudness makes Mariah cringe and groan as she brings her hand up to cover her face for a moment. "Sailors," is her succinct and telling answer, her hands pulling away because, hey, there's a thing in one of them. She narrows her eyes at it before tucking the necklace away in a pocket. "Yes, please," she says, likely not thinking too hard about what sort of tea Luna is carrying with her.

"They drink so much," she says on another groan. And this happens just about anytime they come into port. You'd think she'd learn by now. She doesn't quite notice Cas right off, or she might have been more discreet, but when it's just her and Luna, discretion is often miles away. But his voice slowly worms its way through the haze and she looks up just about the time he stops coming their way. There's a moment's hesitation, but even a hang over doesn't seem to be able to stop her smiling at him. But before she says a word, there's a whole other body coming in and it brings her attention back over to Luna for one simple question.

"Is it always bustling in the morning or is it just my luck?"

"I've learned over the past few days that morning is when people generally get things done." It's said in a rather amazed did you know that?!? type of tone. Pulling a small envelope from a pocket in her dress, Luna leaves the package at the table while she gets up, spying Cas immediately. "Hello Mister Blackburn, was it you keeping Mariah out all hours of the night? For shame and here I thought you a mo— "

Her voice drops off as Algernon is caught making his way to the stairs. "Excuse me, tell Mariah that I'll be right back with her tea."

There's a slight skip to her walk as she winds around the tables to accost Isibeal's border, catching him just before he takes the first step. "Mister Fogg," her voice isn't as loud this time, perhaps a semblance of respect for the man who might be tired from patroling all night. "Can I interest you in some breakfast? Mariah's having tea, so I have a few moments…" Darting a look at the other two, she turns back to Algernon with a pleasant smile. "I'm certain the kitchen has something other than porridge."

From the surprised look on his face and the attempt to mouth a protesting response, Cas is surprised to hear the accusation from Luna and equally unable to form words. He glances back nervously at the man he just traded with, and by the time he looks like he's ready to speak, she's already moving away with instructions.

"Uh— " he gets out, as he steps closer to the table and drops into a seat almost dumbfoundedly. "I— Luna told me to tell you that she'll be right back with… tea?" And he can't help but watch Luna as she walks over to that older man. He makes a thoughtful sound, before looking back at Mariah. "Uh— you look— tired." He struggles with a smile, as if nervous.

Lacking both the necessary motivation and energy required to hasten his progress, Algernon is caught just within reach of freedom. The gathering of his patience that ensues is a tangible process — it raises his chest and sinks his shoulders and directs his eyes elsewhere.

Namely to Mariah and Cas, who he takes in with lukewarm distrust until his knuckles press themselves into his eye sockets all on their own. "No," he says accordingly. "No thank you." His hand drops; he feels compelled to elaborate with an unenthusiastically untruthful, "I've already eaten."

Mariah smirks as she watches Luna change direction, but she doesn't seem to mind. Or perhaps her head just hurts too much to make noise about it. There is a look to Algernon, just a bit of curiosity at their interaction. But when Cas sits down, her attention is far less split.

"I drank too much," she remarks, her own voice staying low. It's louder inside her skull. "And now my head is making me regret it." It may just be the hang over, but there's just something a little odd in how she looks at him. But it must not be entirely bad, because she reaches over to brush his cheek. "On the other hand. You look good." She might just mean his nose. Maybe not, though? Hard to say.

"Oh…" The blonde woman seems somewhat disheartened at the news but pastes a rather vacant smile on her face quite quickly. "A shame," her voice keeping to a lower level than when at the table, "my ma' makes the most incredible scones. There's no place in Dornie that can compare to one of her meals." Not that she has recent experience, only the first twenty years of her life. "If you change your mind," Luna tips her head toward the shared table and raises her eyebrows. But Algernon does look tired.

"Come and visit tomorrow then, alright?"

And with a lift of her hand, she's off toward the kitchen to secure a kettle of water.

"That's why I don't drink— not to mention it can be pretty embarassing what you don't remember," Cas says with that nervous smile, glancing away toward Luna and the old man. But he can't help but laugh and touch his hair a bit, which sticks up despite the fact he's cleaner than he usually is while working.

"I haven't had to clean the stables yet today, so check back with me in a few hours and you'll not think I look good at all," he says in distracted tones. And the reason for his distraction comes out a moment later, as he looks back at Mariah. "That's not her dad, right? Cause— uh— is that the kind of men she— Starting to think maybe she didn't like me cause I was too young."

A hazy nod is hopefully enough to pass for agreement, and the second time Algernon looks at Mariah, it's to catch Cas looking at him. The younger man gets a more thorough looking-over in return, judgmental in a long-distance way that Fogg has a way of being before Luna's jettisoned out the airlock of his morning and he is able to continue up the stairs.

That comment gets a wry, nearly mirthless and quite brief laugh, as Mariah's memory is mostly clear. Didn't drink enough, obviously. But her smile, tired though it may be, returns when he goes on.

"I wouldn't say that. I'm sure you'll still look fine. Smell, though," she says, lifting a hand in a playful so-so gesture. When he changes the subject, though, there's an amused glance over toward the other pair. "That is most certainly not her father," she says, that amusement coloring her tone as well. But her attention flicks back to Cas before she adds, "Luna has pretty specific tastes."

It doesn't take a moment before Luna is flitting out of the kitchen as though she belonged there. Kettle and cups in hand, she weaves her way around the tables again until she reaches Mariah and Cas. "Tea all around?" Without waiting for Cas to agree or disagree, he gets a cup placed in front of him full of fragrant leaves and dried blossoms. The same is placed in front of Mariah and then one for Luna herself. "There's some fresh scones coming as well, no cream for them though… Some swine used it all up in some sort've game he was playin' with a— "

Her jaw drops and she takes in a large breath to begin blowing on the hot liquid. "You know, we don't really need cream for the scones anyway, right? That's some thing the English do, we can have'em plain. Tea's good."

Under the judgmental look, Cas' eyes and smile drop, looking down to the table and his hands, and suddenly looking quite self-conscious- … er. And it isn't about Luna's specific tastes. "Uh— " Any response he may have had is cut off by Luna's reemergence. With tea and scones.

"Oh, I— sorry I— guess I sorta— I didn't steal your chair, did I? But— hey, I'm English," he adds with a furrowed brow. "But I don't— I usually put jam on mine, when it was available. But plain is fine too— since, well you invited me. Thank you."

When Luna comes over with the tea, Mariah's first order of business is to take a nice, long drink. Looong drink. And she does seem less tense, at least, when she sets the cup back down again. "Actually, I'm English, too," she says with a wry grin in Luna's direction. Never mind how long she's lived in Dornie!

"This is just lovely, Luna, thank you." Even if the idea of food is not… completely welcoming, the tea makes up for it well enough. "I find it hard to believe people are up and working by now every day," she notes, recalling an earlier bit of the conversation now that Luna's back again. "Simply can't be true." It's half teasing, of course, but the sentiment is true enough. It's too damn early.

"Well then, didn't I stick my foot in it this time." Luna's first defense in regards to how many English there are at the table. "I s'pose that's alright, my da's not a Scott either and some of the ones we have around here aren't the best folk to be accociating with." It's probably one of the closest things that the blonde has ever given in the way of a Cas compliment.

Taking a smaller drink of her own tea, the woman seems quite relaxed. More and more with each sip, actually. Her cup is placed down and she dots the corner of her lips with a touch of her kerchief. "I never would have guessed it. I think I forgot that there was a nine in the morning. How is your tea, Cas?"

It takes a few moments for Cas to finally drink the tea, actually forgetting to ask what she might have put in it this time. Maybe the almost compliment had something to do with it, and by the time he's sipping it like a proper West Yorkshire tea drinker, he's smiling and forgetting to think about it.

"I'm usually halfway done with the workday by then," he says with a laugh, before realizing that's probably insulting himself in this conversation. "But— the horses tend to wake up earlier than most folks. Sometimes I don't think they sleep at all."

Mariah laughs lightly, and surprisingly painlessly, and reaches over the table to touch Luna's arm. "You didn't, either. Just giving you a bit of a time, is all." She is still not sipping her tea, it's too early for good manners, but rather just drinking it. Which is probably why Mariah is feeling pretty much fantastic in a short period of time.

"I only acknowledge one nine o'clock. This isn't it," she says, her lips spreading into an easy, wide smile before she looks over at Cas. "That makes it terribly difficult to procrastinate," she notes, "Those horses should really think about letting you sleep in once in a while. Or twice in a while, even." What is she even saying anymore.

"Is it true that horses sleep standing up?" Playing the part of the perfect hostess requires a tidbit of knowledge of all areas of life. That one horse fact is really the only thing Luna can draw on to extend a conversation with Cas. She's trying. "I've never really been a fan of the beasts, personally, they're rather big and I'm always afraid of being run down on the road."

Like Mariah, Luna is feeling a little more relaxed than not. No pain and no jitters (for the moment) make her newfound sobriety a wonderful thing. "I agree with Mariah, horses need to be much more considerate of others. I fed a lump of sugar to one once, here… but…" A twitch of her eyebrows and a sour expression have her gathering her things again. "I just remembered that I have an appointment elsewhere, I really shouldn't be here."

At first the effects of the drug are only visible in the smile that becomes less and less nervous. Each sip becomes a little deeper too, as if some subconscious part of him realizes that it makes him feel good. "I only want to sleep in when I'm in your bed, Mariah," he suddenly says, too, which only amplifies the fact that the drugs are taking affect.

Of course, Luna's dismissal makes him blush. Despite being drugged loosening his tongue in public, he can still be embarassed when it gits him. "Oh, uh— And here I was hoping to get off on a better foot with you— but I understand— uh— appointments. I just had mine." He points at the table— which the man has long sense vacated. "Oh, he's gone."

Mariah lifts a hand to wave at Luna's sentiments about horses, "Nothing to be afraid of, Luna love. Any decent rider knows how to keep a horse from trampling people out on the road." She might have gone on, as Mariah actually does like horses, but Cas' words make her look over his way instead.

"I hope that's not all you find by bed useful for," she says, then pauses a moment to retool her sentence, "Not all you find use for in my— You know what I mean." She waves a hand there, before she looks over at Luna again. "I'll see you at home, ey? Do not expect me to be awake, though. I make noooo promises."

"Aye, be careful in here, will you? Remember that Mister Fogg is in one of the rooms if you need help. And I'm sure my da' will give you any aid you need. And Cas." Word of warning given, Luna picks up the parcel and makes her way to the kitchen again. She's gone for a few minutes before she slips back out with a worried expression on her face.

A small wave is given to both Mariah and Cas before the blonde makes her way out again. Sans package.

"You know we find plenty of things to do in your bed," Cas says more boldly than he may have under other situations. At least Luna is leaving, so he doesn't have to embarass himself too badly. "I'll walk her home. Should have time left for that much," he says with a grin as he waves goodbye to Luna.

Just as she vanishes, he realizes something and looks down at the tea. "She put something in this, didn't she?" Seems he's aware enough to realize that much. "I hope I don't do anything stupid…"

And that comment has Mariah grinning much more broadly. It isn't just the drugs, either. "Oh, I've missed you," she says in return, even though it hasn't been that long. She's got even less control over her tongue than he does at the moment. "I'd appreciate the company on the way home because frankly… I have no idea if I'd make it there at this… rate."

She seems to notice what's off about the moment just about the same time Cas is asking his question, and she looks down at what's left of her tea. It isn't much. "She really did," she says. There's just a short pause before she laughs, a hand coming up over her face. "I know I shouldn't laugh, but for goodness sakes."

It hasn't been that long at all, really. But that doesn't stop him from smiling widely at the sentiment and sharing it without having to repeat the words. Cas actually reaches across the table and touches her wrist lightly. "Well, at least she didn't use it to harass us— I was really nervous when I saw you. I mean I wanted to, and I'm glad I did cause…"

Maybe he's not completely over his nervousness. "I'm not sure how to… eh— you know. Be. Toward you. In places like this. I don't want to get punched by a drunken sailor. I'm finally starting to heal." But he doesn't take his hand away for longer than a gesture at his face. "And if I have to do something stupid I don't mind it as much around you." He does mean that.

Mariah listens to him with a gentler smile, and she shifts to take that hand that touches her wrist to link her fingers with his. "Just be. You know? Don't worry so much about the drunken sailors. Their aim is terrible anyway."

At those last words, she glances around the room a bit before she takes a moment to finish her tea off — it was a really bad hang over — and looks back his way. "Let's get out of here, aye? Seeing you in public is lovely, but I'd like to get you alone, too. While we've got a bit of a chance at it."

With their fingers linked, Cas looks down at her invite, paying far more attention to that than anything else. From the way he smiles, he definitely likes the idea. "That sounds wonderful." And without a moment's wait he too downs the rest of his tea. Even after he realized it was drugged.

Maybe he doesn't mind being drugged around her.

But as soon as he starts to get to his feet the bag in his lap shifts and he remembers it. "Oh, I — was supposed to bring this back." He hesitates as he lifts it, and pulls it up against his body.

A good worker would say no to a girl. Especially one that's such a distraction. "I— guess an hour late won't be too bad…"

Getting up to her feet, too, Mariah pauses when he remembers he was on an errand. "We can walk in that direction. Might cut down on the time a little." She gives his hand a squeeze as she leans over to press a warm, affectionate kiss to his temple.

"Come on, before I track down Luna's mom to see if she'd let us a room for that hour," she says with a crooked grin. It makes no secret of the reasons why she'd like to get him alone, but then, she wasn't trying to be secretive about it, either.

"Walk in the direction of the stables?" Cas says, looking a little disappointed. Maybe he thinks the idea of renting a room for an hour would be perferable to walking back to the stables right now.

He stops long enough to pull out a clean handkerchief and wrap up the ungarnished scones and wrap them up in a napkin, he seems to have decided to not let well cooked scones go to waste and puts them in his pockets.

"I'd rather use your room— but I suppose we don't have to use a bed at all, do we… I mean we know a tree, and that's one the way…"

Noting that disappointment, Mariah tilts her head a bit, but can't shake that amused look about her. Of course, as he goes on, she laughs a bit and nods her head lightly.

"We don't have to go back to the stables straight away. I hadn't planned on letting you go that easily." Once he's got his scones and himself squared away, she leads the way toward the door. "I promise, we can use my bed next time." But this time around, something more on the adventurous side.