|[Original Fiction]: YAVNC, Chapter 6
||[Jun. 8th, 2008|01:14 am]
We're up to 6250 words, now.
They were in the north pasture, about a mile from the barn. "You know," Stanislava said, "we should invite Ashley to meet us out here. It's not much of a ride from her house. This weekend, maybe?"
"Sure," Dermot said. "We could have a picnic. Say, do you think she was joking about her wing?"
"Do you think I was joking when I said it would be a long flight?"
"I don't know. Maybe."
"It would be funny if she showed up here, all of a sudden, wouldn't it?"
"No. It would be perfectly reasonable. And rather nice." Stanislava reached down and petted Garvey on the side of his neck. "You'd like to meet Ashley, wouldn't you, boy?" The horse nickered.
"He probably thinks an Ashley is a new sort of treat. A very tasty one."
"You know, I could say something quite foul right now. Something that would be more appropriate coming off the lips of a bee-oh-wye."
"So could I. But I'll not."
She raised her eyebrow. "Because you're far too decent?"
"No, because we both know what it would be, so saying it would be redundant."
"That, too. And... hey, what's that?" A reindeer was flying towards them on large feathered wings. "Perhaps there's a whole family of them moved in, now."
"She certainly doesn't look like the one we saw this morning. Different markings, and her coat's much lighter. I'd say she's a bit smaller as well."
"A male reindeer would have lost his antlers by now. Although this is sort of late in the spring for even a female to keep them. Or at least I think so."
"This is assuming that winged reindeer are like the regular sort. But, for what it's worth, I agree with you. She feels like a girl. Just like the other one."
"Ashley said she had a sister, didn't she?"
"She did. A family of shapeshifting flying reindeer? Are we seriously saying this?"
"You're the one who asked her about flying, Stani."
The reindeer glided to the ground, stumbling slightly on landing, and trotted over to them.
"Hello, Miss Mundy," Dermot said. "How are you this lovely afternoon? I'm Dermot O'Donovan, and my companion is Stanislava Morrison. Very pleased to meet you."
The reindeer circled about them. "If you're here to investigate your sister's new friends," he said, "I assure you that our motives towards her are of the purest."
"Do try to be polite, Stani," he said. "Please excuse her sense of humour, Miss Mundy." The reindeer snorted and rolled her eyes.
"I don't think she believes you, Dermot. Little sisters never do."
"If you wish, Miss Mundy, you could turn your skin and we could meet each other in human form. We'll turn away, if you wish privacy." The reindeer was impassive.
"That is, if it's no offense to suggest such a thing," Stanislava said. "If it is, please forgive us. We've never met a shapeshifter before. Well, other than your sister." The reindeer looked steadily at her for a moment, then nodded. She bowed gracefully.
"Good evening, Miss Mundy," Dermot said, bowing in the saddle. "A great pleasure to meet you."
"Charmed," Stanislava said. The reindeer wheeled about, putting her back to the wind, and broke into a canter, spreading her wings. Within seconds, she was aloft.
"Beautiful sight," Dermot said.
"I thought the other reindeer was more graceful."
"Well, of course." He laughed. "It's going to turn out that they only keep winged reindeer for pets, and this was all a big joke."
"Why would Ashley play a joke on us? She didn't even meet us until after we saw her on the way to school."
"Because she's a princess from another planet, and she's required to marry you because of a promise her great-great grandfather made to your great-great-great grandfather after he fished his crashed wooden spaceship out of a lake in Sweden."
"Why me? Wouldn't it be more appropriate if she were required to marry you, Dermot?"
"Because they're aliens, and they haven't got quite the same ideas about gender that we have. Plus, it's funnier. And if she had to marry me it would be just like a dozen other shows."
"You've been watching too much anime."
"Most of it because you wanted to see it."
"Don't confuse me with logic, Dermot."
"Would you rather I confused you with illogic?"
"You do that all the time."