May 9, 2015

In Which Dea Doesn't Get Anyone's Hopes Up

December 7, 1191

"Holden!" The enthusiasm was a little much for Dea normally, but at least it masked her discomfort. She wasn't quite sure how to talk to her youngest sister--younger brother?--youngest sibling?--any more. She'd thought long and hard on the issue, and she had resolved that--at least until puberty kicked in--perhaps it was better that Hollie was out of the loop, as unfair as that was given that she was the owner of the body in question. But she was at the age where secret-keeping wouldn't have been her strong suit, and if their father found out, things wouldn't end well for anyone.

"Hello, Dea. It's nice that you're back for your break." She probably found it odd that Dea was so happy to see her, but kids tended to take good changes without question. "Is university fun?"

"I think it is, yes." Even if some of her housemates were convinced that she needed to attend more parties.

"What are you studying, again?"

"Practical Governance."

"Oh." Hollie yawned. "I don't think I'd like that. But Father will probably make me take that." "Possibly. I know he was upset about me taking it." Knowing her father, he probably would have wanted her to focus in Pre-Asceticism so he wouldn't have to worry about shelling out a dowry for her. But, she'd made it clear that he had no say in what she chose to study and what she chose to do with her life after she was done, and Lady Rahileine had agreed. "You still have a while before you'll be old enough to go, though. Maybe things will change by then."

Though she very much doubted it. What did her mother plan on doing if they didn't produce a son? Faking Hollie's death?

"Maybe. But I'm glad you like it. Honestly, I wish you could be queen, because I don't think I want to be king."

She wouldn't lie--it was a nice thing to hear, especially from that little mouth. But, no sense in getting either of their hopes up. "Oh, don't say that."

"It's true, though. Being king sounds dreadfully boring. And hard. A lot of people stand to suffer if a king doesn't do his job right. You'd do it right, though."

Dea couldn't quite formulate a true-enough rebuttal--but Hollie changed the subject with a scratch at her side. "Are you all right?"

"Yes. It's just this itchy binder thing Mama made me start wearing. You know, because men don't like people seeing their breasts. I don't know why I have to wear it now, because mine aren't big yet, but Mama said it was time." She scratched again--then blushed. "Oh! But I'm not supposed to talk about it, because men don't talk about it."

Of course they didn't. Good save, Mother. "Don't worry. I won't tell anyone you mentioned it. Just don't say anything to Father; he's very sensitive about men's breasts."

Hollie nodded. "That's what Mama said."

NEXT CHAPTER:

5 comments:

Van said...

Next post is the last of 1191. I'd better get to updating lines of succession (to save stress, I only do that at the end of each year...).

Also, the December grad post isn't up on my Tumblr, and not because I... well, I actually did totally forget. But! I recently decided that I'd only post graduating pictures if we'd seen at least one of the people graduating that term in-story, or for sure would in the future. There were only two grads this term, neither of whom have appeared in story or are likely to as more than extras. They'll still get their names on the list on the profiles site, but that's it.

Winter said...

And Hollie says what the rest of us have been thinking! :D

It is nice to know that Hollie doesn't seem to have the desire to rule. Finding out she was born a female and the confusion to follow will be trouble enough for her.

... Although, it would be very convenient if 'King' Hollie ruled just long enough to abdicate in favor of Dea. Anyone who would object is likely in Dovia and not Naroni, and, well, possession is 9/10ths of the law. :D

Van said...

Preeeetty much. XD

No, Hollie's not much interested in ruling (Gennie isn't either, but right now, she's not in a position where she needs to be). Hollie's more of a "support" personality than a leader, I think. She'd rather back her sister as queen than king/queen herself.

And she's in for enough stuff to deal with sooner rather than later without the added burden of running a country, for sure.

It would certainly be convenient! But, no matter what happens, it's a lucky thing for both Hollie and Dea that they're on the same page.

mimusofbellingar said...

Ietrin would still have to shell out a dowry if she became a nun. xD Though admittedly not quite such a big one.
Though it is amazing that Hollie still falls for that lie with men having breasts, too. O.o'
Though when I think about what kind of silly things people believe even after they're grown, maybe I should be silent.

Van said...

He would--but yeah, not as big of one. While Dea doesn't have much interest in romance and marriage in general, I doubt she'd enjoy being a nun unless maybe she got to be very high-ranking immediately. Even then, I don't think she'd care for the religious aspects of such a life, especially since Dea herself is an intervene-whenever-possible person; I think she takes issue with the idea of a god who lets her mother suffer like this.

Hollie's been pretty sheltered as a result of all this. She's never actually seen a man with his shirt off, so as far as she knows, they're all binding breasts.

But yeah, I guess objectively speaking, it's not any more ridiculous than misinformation about the hymen or something like that.