Author: M. DeLorraine PM
Of all the stories surrounding detectives like Sherlock Holmes and Hercule Poirot, some stories still haven't quite made it out of obscurity. One such story surrounds a intelligent, mysterious woman and her young, brash assistant.Rated: Fiction T - English - Mystery/Adventure - Words: 660 - Follows: 1 - Published: 03-11-13 - id: 3108059
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Hapless, Helpless, and Hollow
I, like many other people, have a tendency towards reverie. Like alcohol to some and tobacco to others, daydreaming has, and likely will remain, my vice. In comparison to many other malignant habits, I find it one of the least harmful, and most enjoyable.
Other people, my mistress included, fail to see it in such a light.
I snapped to attention, something I had, over the course of 6 years, become a master of doing. As a hallboy, I possess few skills besides those that I had acquired through years of cooking, boot mending, and chamber pot cleaning.
By Saint Patrick's beard, it's 1870! Even labourers in America have plumbing by now!
But, as the English are wont to do, my proprietor found it prudent to insist on the old ways, completely oblivious to the fact that I, and the other domestic servants, would give half of a Guinea, nay, a full sovereign, for a toilet with pipes.
My mistress must have noticed that I wasn't giving her full heed, as she impatiently snapped her fingers in front of my face.
She wore a stern countenance, but that was no surprise. She always wore one when speaking amongst 'rabble'. When amongst those of her stature, however, she always wore one of amiability and imperturbability. Oftentimes, I should think that she has a second face that she keeps hidden in her bed chambers, and rotates them accordingly.
"Honestly, Alexander, you're incorrigible. For six years you've stayed with us! Six years! Any boy of your age would have wanted some sort of advancement from his state as a simple hallboy, and yet you remain insistent on laziness, forcing yourself into this eternal, dreadful position!"
Arlene Irving, as she was called, was at the optimum age of 34. She had a rather robust figure, and her black hair reached just past her neck. She had a oddly large nose that occupied the direct center of her face, almost as though someone had once used her face as a target for archery, hit the bulls-eye, and decided to leave the arrowhead in. Her grey eyes were angled awkwardly on her face, and her thin, wide mouth was positioned just at the right place on her chin to make her look as though she three chins, rather than two.
I started again, not noticing that I had been once again been musing to myself. I murmured a pithy apology before she began to chastise me again.
"Really! It's as though you don't want to be here!"
Your ability to deduce the obvious is astounding. I thought to myself, while pretending to look dejected.
"Well, whatever the case, I need your assistance. I have a good deal of company coming over tomorrow, and I would like the place immaculate before anyone arrives."
This came as no surprise whatsoever. Ever since the untimely death of husband, Ms. Irving often invited large groups of company to Kirkland Hall, her place of residence. Perhaps the extravagant parties were her way of coping with the loss of her husband. Nevertheless, these revelries usually meant a great deal more work for the servants.
"Yes, Mistress. It shall be done promptly." I said, articulating as best as I was able.
"Very well. You are dismissed."
At the time, I was wholly unconcerned about the festivity apart the necessary preparations. They were not altogether uncommon, and it was unlikely that I would remember it they day after the cleaning was finished.
Oh, ye gods, did I learn how wrong I could be!
A/N: This is really rather short, due to the fact that it's merely a prologue. My entries for the next few chapters will likely be significantly longer. But anyway, here it is! As you've probably gathered, the perspective is not that of the main character. In fact, the main character has fully failed to even make an appearance.
I genuinely hope you'll stay tuned!