Aponia fell and immediately started screaming dramatically. Porenne
turned from where she was packing Vestian's bags for his trip and
picked the little girl up. She was very aware of how much screaming
children irritated her husband so she tried to shush the little girl
with little success until she retrieved a cookie from her pocket.
"Sorry," she called softly to the other room where she could hear him grumbling.
Vestian looked into the door, his handsome face set into a frown as he
looked at the child in his wife's arms. "What wrong with her?" He
glanced at his bags and then back to the child.
"She fell, she'll be alright." Porenne bounced the little one on her
hip and tried to pack with her other hand. "Your bags are almost
finished. Do you think you'll need your formal robes?"
"Hmph." He looked at his bags and and gave a brief nod. "Yes. With
Bryvin as a new Lord Holder, it might be best to be formal in
appearance. Why don't you just put her down?"
Aponia had subsided to a sniff and was now concentrating on the cookie
so Porenne set her on the floor again and shushed her when she started
to protest being put down. "Sweetie I'll pick you back up when I'm
done with daddy's bags. Alright?" A few more sniffs and murmured
soothings later Porenne was back on her feet and pulling the robes
from the closet. "About how long do you expect to be gone this time,"
He stepped into the room to look at the bags. "Two weeks at the least,
I'm sure. There's business he wishes to discuss and a portrait to be
done." He carefully avoided Aponia as he came to stand beside the bed.
"We will miss you," she said primly as she tucked an extra pair of
dress shoes into the side of the bag. "I put in a new toothcleaner,"
she added as she walked back into the dressing room to retrieve his
shaving bag to place in his bag.
"Really." The reply was dry as he examined the bag. As he was checking
to make sure his painting supplies had been properly stored, he felt a
tugging at his legs and looked down.
His daughter had grabbed as his leg and pulled herself up, then began
tugging at his pants. "Da! Da!"
He looked up for Porenne, uncertain as to what to make of his
daughters demands. "Porenne, I need you in here!"
"Yes dear," she said and bustled back with the shaving kit. She rushed
around the bed and picked up the little girl with a smile. "Yes," she
said. "Da is going on a trip." It was nothing new for the children as
Vestian had always traveled extensively. "Sorry," she apologized to
her husband under her breath.
He glanced at the child, who was still holding her arms out in demand
at him. "I just didn't know what she wanted." He took the shaving kit
and quickly shoved it into one of his bags.
Porenne's browns twitched but she smoothed out her expression out of
long practice. She did pride herself on being a model of wifely duty,
other than the one area she couldn't quite figure out. "Oh, she just
wants you to hold her."
He blinked and then looked at Aponia, his brow furrowed. "Oh." He
frowned a bit. "But you normally hold her."
"Yes," she agreed stifling a smile. Aponia hadn't learned yet about
her father and was now leaning out of Porenne's arms and reaching for
Vestian. "But she wants you."
Awkwardly, Vestian took Aponia, holding her out from him and watching
her legs dangle as he held her under the arms. The girl squirmed
enough that he had to pull her close, trying to figure out how to hold
her without her squirming too much. It was clear that he had no idea
what he was doing and he was on the verge of just thrusting the child
back at Porenne when his youngest wrapped her arms around his neck and
cuddled. Vestian hesitantly patted her back. "Uh...good child."
"I love you daddy," she said and smushed his cheeks with her hands to
make him pucker and then planted a wet kiss on his lips.
That made Vestian go completely still. He was unused to any affection
from his children. In truth, he normally found them to be confusing
and found that he was often out of his depth when dealing with them.
But though the gesture had surprised him, the words caused his dark
eyes to go soft and a hint of a smile to play over his mouth. "Well,
uhm, yes. I, uh...love you too." He glanced at Porenne and rubbed a
little of the wet off of his lower lip.
Porenne smiled softly at the tableau. If only she had her husband's
talent at art. This would be a moment she would capture forever. But
she didn't and would have to be content with her own memories. Her
smile broadened when she saw Vestian looking at her and she reached
out to Aponia who came back to her willingly.
"Well," she said, "I think that's everything."
He nodded, still glancing at his youngest as though trying to figure
out the girl. "Yes, I believe so. I'll leave first thing in the
"Right, well I guess I'll just go put the children to bed." She nodded
and smiled again before carrying her daughter out of the room. "I'll
be right back." her voice floated back through the open door.
Last updated on the October 3rd 2014