“Oh, and on Samhain it’s ladies’ choice!” an excited Faye exclaimed.
“Meaning?” asked Audra
“The women get to ask the men to dance, and the men HAVE to comply,” she said with a grin.
Audra pictured asking Maxen to dance and him having to do it. She forced herself not to smile. Perhaps she would ask him to dance. Dancing with the queen was innocent enough. Many men considered it an honor.
“Ladies, come along, we need to go select our turnips for carving!” insisted Travana, always trying to keep them on schedule.
“I love carving turnips!” Audra squealed Audra. She hooked her arms around Faye and Travana. “Let’s go!”
It was one of those fair autumn days, dry and bright with the perfume of autumn – crisp fallen leaves and the tang of distant wood smoke – a day where anything seemed possible and the future bright. Audra’s spirits could not have been lighter.
And right outside of the courtyard stood a huge pile of turnips, some small, others the size of a horse’s head. Audra and her ladies picked though the offerings.
“Wait,” said Audra,” balancing a fat turnip in her palm, “I have an idea. There are so many turnips here. Why don’t we invite some of the children to the courtyard right now so they can carve, too? It’ll be fun!”
“I don’t think that’s ever been done before,...
... middle of paper ...
... to the heart. But when he corrected himself, the joy flooded out of her. Still, she tried to make light of the situation.
“But you should love your queen.” She tried for a playful tone. Had it worked?
“I do, of course I do. I love you as a subject should, my lady.”
“Good. I can use all the love I can get.”
They reached the table, and Audra asked the ladies and Maxen to help her hand out the treat bags. Once they had been dispensed and the children had wandered back home with their turnips and Samhain loot, Travana insisted they needed to have some downtime before the long preparations for the evening.
“It’ll take some time to braid those ribbons though our hair, dress and so forth. And you have a long night ahead of you, my lady,” said Travana.
“A queen’s work is never done,” insisted Audra with a dramatic, yet jovial sigh. She was determined to be happy tonight.
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