Skylar was humming a small ditty to herself and dusting the crystal chandelier hanging in the hall when the Master burst through the doors, muttering to himself about something or other. Out of concern and curiosity, she stopped in her motions and turned to him, daring to inquire as to what was bothering him.
"Master, what ails you?"
He must not have noticed her presence when he entered as he jolted, head whipping up to meet the person speaking. Realizing it was no more than one of his faithful maids, the lavender-headed man visibly relaxed, sighing deeply.
A delicate brow lifted. "Master, I know it is not my place to stick my nose in your business, but you are clearly disturbed. Will you please share your distress with me?"
His eyes darted away. And then after a minute's contemplation, he opened his mouth to speak.
"I happened to come across Eve in the kitchen and struck up a conversation. At some point, she mentioned she knew a magic trick. And I, naive fool that I am, believed her and begged for her to show it to me. She played coy, claiming I was not truly interested and it wasn't a particularly impressive feat, and after about ten minutes of trying to convince her I was indeed interested, she finally consented. In a ceramic mug, she poured a full cup of coffee, and with no magic words or anything, she laid a gloved palm on the table and placed the hot mug onto the back of her hand. She'd been working in the gardens, you see, so she still had her thick mitts on. Utterly disappointed, I quibbled, telling her that wasn't magic, and she looked so angry with me that I thought she'd set me on fire with just her gaze. So as kindly as I could, I took the mug and balanced it on my own hand, biting back a wince at the scalding heat seeping through the cup. I even offered for her to place another mug on my other hand to prove the point that this was not any sort of magic, and she complied…
And then she left. She abandoned me in the kitchen, both hands pinned to the table underneath two steaming coffee mugs." He held up the injured extremities as he wrapped up the tale.
Skylar listened intently to the long speech, internally facepalming as the Lord Garry ended the story. As much as she, ahem, adored the Master, she had to admit his idiocy. Falling for such a stupid prank…
"Wanting to preserve my pride and not calling for help, I tried lifting the cups into the air, but they ended up spilling everywhere, burning my poor hands. I ran them under cold water, but I still can't feel them."
The twin shook her head. Her Master was so gullible.
"Master, let me bandage your hands for you. It wouldn't do to walk around with those all tender and vulnerable."
"Would you please? It would help greatly."
"Of course." She began dismounting the stepladder, lowering the duster to the ground and leading her Master towards a washroom and a medical kit.
"God, that woman. I can't stand her! She's just so… just so…" He grumbled crossly as he trailed behind, apparently so riled that he was at a loss for words.
"Sir… as much as I… um…" She paused, hoping this wouldn't come out the wrong way and the Master wouldn't think she was Eve's accomplice, "as much as I like Eve, if you dislike her so much, why don't you just fire her?"
The Earl blinked owlishly, all signs of fury falling from his expression and legs coming to a halt behind the twin maid. Perhaps the thought had not even occurred to him?
"Fire Eve?" He echoed, lost in thought. Realizing the man was no longer following her, Skylar turned back to face him.
"Yes, that is what I said."
"Fire her…" His attention was drawn to the ground, feet fidgeting awkwardly as if he were… embarrassed. "I couldn't do that…"
Skylar was taken aback at this new Master. He seemed so unsure, so feeble, so… young. Like a teenage boy in-
No, that couldn't be it.
She could feel her heart wilting. If it was…
Her chest tightened painfully, breath stolen away. She'd been so loyal and caring all these years, but…
The twin glanced up with resolve at the man she'd served for so long. Yes, she had hoped that over time, her feelings would be reciprocated, but it seemed it was not to be. Love had other plans. But it didn't matter. His heart was stolen, and there was no way she could whisk it away from the lucky woman who possessed it. She had no chance.
And now, there was nothing more she could do, apart from moving on.
She inhaled deeply, forcing a soft smile. Despite the fatal slug her heart suffered, he was her Master, and she was his happy, docile maid, always willing to listen and carry out orders. Nothing more.
"I understand, sir."
A/N: Thank you so so much to Yuu3 and Shan for pointing out something that I hadn't even thought of. It is for you two that I have whipped up this slightly longer piece, and in the end, it actually helped the characters' development (along with the plot's), so again, thankya!
(Also, due to my own insecurities about the next part's genre added onto the fact that I've returned to school, don't expect a new piece tomorrow.
I'm sorry. Maybe in a few days, okay? Or maybe a week... Who knows. I'll try to get it to you guys as soon as I can, I promise.
Bye for now.)