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May 20, 2019 3:37 PM
Enslaved mage verse Wisterias meet Elvira
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Oh no. She didn't mean to make her uncomfortable. Yuna's not even sure what Elvira could be thinking right now. Andrew was a little like this before too, and kind words soothed him. She hopes it'll be the same with Elvira.

"It's okay. You don't have to call me ma'am if you don't want. Andrew calls me Yuna, you're welcome to as well."

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Flinch. Well, apparently the test is not done yet. 

She lets herself tremble, tries to radiate with nonverbals again - she's been taught better than to want things or think she gets to, she knows...

Tries to figure out the rest of it. Not calling her ma'am presumably will read like her thinking she gets to not want to, but will using it be taken to mean she still thinks she gets to somehow decide? In which case what is she supposed to do?

Flinch again at the second part - minders usually sound sardonic about it when they go for nice-phrasings in their orders, but that doesn't make it not remind her of what that tends to be. (If 'fucking get over here' means 'now or better ten seconds ago', then 'would you kindly get over here' is that with the 'or maybe the mage is getting above themselves' wound in. She'll take the yelling any day. Not that she gets to pick.)

"At your disposal, Yuna, ma'am."

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This is going to be a hard one. She shares a sympathetic look with Andrew, and settles back into her seat.

"We're not far off from home now. My father isn't home right now, but he'll be sure to introduce himself once he does return."

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"Yes, Yuna, ma'am." Maybe she can hope that's more the 'and give instructions' kind of introducing than the 'preemptive punishment as warning' kind.

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The car pulls into a long drive, and parks in front of the ornate front doors. A fountain bubbles in the centre of the drive. 

"We're here," Yuna says, smiling at Elvira. She waits for the driver to open the door, and when he does she steps out, then stands nearby waiting for Elvira.

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That smile was pretty unambiguously at her. She can think of approximately one reason for a human to smile like that at a mage outside of field cover. And she had hoped as such things went that this could be one thing she could spend her life without. But hoping isn't the kind of thing that gets you much out if it. (Maybe it's something else. Could still be; she can still wish it. But if she's going to be dragged off to a bedroom, or whatever private ownership humans do, she'd at the least prefer to not be shocked at it.)

Can't look to Andrew for how-to-be-acting this time. But it's not likely Yuna wants her staying in the car. She climbs out, careful with movements, nothing too fast and nothing sudden and nothing too close.

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A couple of servants (not mage ones) open the front door and welcome Yuna home. She waves cheerily.

"Follow me, I'll show you where your rooms are." She heads inside.

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Andrew brings up the rear, watching Elvira in case she feels uncomfortable.

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She not run into servants outside of field cover before, but she's familiar with the concept. Eyes down and hands visible and movement careful. She follows where she's told.

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Yuna leads the way through a huge, ornate house, up a flight of stairs and to the right, leading into huge quarters. 

“Just through here will be your room.” Yuna opens a set of double doors. Inside is a plush double bed, and off to the side is an ensuite bathroom. “We’ve bought some clothes, you can pick whatever you want to wear. There’s also a phone that connects to the ones in the house, if you want to call down to the kitchens. Or reach me or Andrew or my father.”

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She supposes if you're buying black market mages for private ownership and have an enormous house and all that, it might be in fact cheaper to put the mages in one of the rooms you already have than go retrofitting a mages' hall. And if you're watching your mages by video camera (which, if Yuna kept minders around all the time presumably they'd have shown up by now, so. And obviously Yuna isn't going to follow them around 24/7 herself) it makes sense enough to put her and Andrew in different rooms. Less watching for conspiracy to be doing and all that.

She's not the least looking forward to whatever prophylactic is considered the right level for don't-you-get-ideas from being in a room like this, but, well, not like there's anything she can do, there. If it's easier for the humans to stick her in a room, she's not expecting 'maybe it'd be easier for the mage for you to not do that' to particularly move anyone.

 

And - not a surprise the test is continuing, given that. Trembling, and keeping eyes down, and every nonverbal obeisance radiation she can think of while she's still standing and following.

"At your disposal, Yuna, ma'am."

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Yuna isn’t sure what to do. Andrew was a little more snarky when he first came here, and at least gave her a chance to prove she wasn’t a monster. Yuna can’t even imagine the hardships Elvira must’ve gone through to be so frightened. 

Time, she tells herself. She just needs time. 

“All right. I’ll leave you to get settled. Dinner will be around 7, I or one of the servants will come and collect you then.”

Yuna exits the room, squeezing Andrew’s elbow as she passes. 

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The reassuring touch is gratefully accepted by Andrew. He feels at war with himself; knowing how Elvira feels, and yet wanting her to react differently. He wants her to immediately know that this place is different, is safe, but he only knows that through experience. 

Experience that she’s yet to have. 

“I’m here if you need anything. My room’s down the hall.” He turns to leave, and stops. Turns back. 

“They’re not like others. Yuna and her father. They’ve never hurt me. Or anything else. I know you don’t think you can be yourself. But you can. I hope- I hope you come to think of this as home too.”

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"Yes Yuna, ma'am."

She notices the touch, flinches some. Let's herself do it, though if Yuna's into the casual touch thing she'll probably need to stop with the flinching soon enough. But she'd rather actually know Yuna's reaction to the flinching than guess at it, before the one getting touched is her. Will take the risk, for that. (At the moment there does not seem to be one.)

 

She's still not entirely clear on Andrew's field cover status (can't ask him, obviously). Isn't sure either way how much of what he just said was scripted for him. Definitely enough the beginning part - 'will the new mage try leaving the room without actual permission'. Most of the end she can't make that makes sense out of - maybe some sort of phrases used by the mages wherever he's from? (Or scripted, again, in which case she still has no idea what it's trying to mean.)

The middle - might be his. Which - she should probably not be surprised that this 'father' also goes for that. (The 'be sure to introduce himself' gets an entirely new possible-and-hoping-otherwise-sure-won't-do-any-good meaning.) And - if one is going to be taken off to bed, she supposes not hurting is better than the alternative, at the least. (Nor can she envy his luck at that, past experiences and worse ones on top of that apparently.)

She nods.

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“...okay.” Andrew seems rather lost for words, but doesn’t press Elvira for more. He takes his leave and heads to his room. 

Once inside he sinks onto his bed, head in his hands. He tries not to think about how alike to her he was when he first got here. 

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Yuna had released her walking chain, and no one had her restrained otherwise at the moment. So she gets to pick which wall to sit against as she looks around the room. 

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The room is simply furnished, but everything is clearly of good make. The wallpaper is a soft blue, and the bathroom has a brighter shade for its tiles.

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Anything in it except the bed?

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A dresser, with a modest amount of clothes, a mirror, a bookcase and a desk.

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She doesn't open the dresser and so won't know about the clothes yet. She looks at the bookcase and desk, carefully without touching. Any items they're holding?

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The bookcase holds a few books, mostly magic reference and non-fiction, and the desk holds a notebook and a few pens.

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She stays away from the notebook and pens. She stays very, very thoroughly away from the magical reference books. She hasn't been given permission to use anything, so she doesn't, lies back on the floor and considers her situation.

She doesn't really have enough information yet. Hints and construing and not much else. Not that anyone tends to care to give mages information, but she can probably get at least a bit more from the rest of the day and all that. 

That, then, for now.

She hums a few songs, reads the spines of the nonfiction books, tries to reconstruct what she saw of the house and the trip to it. Waits.

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Around 7, Andrew sticks his head in Elvira’s room. “Ready for-” he stops, noticing she hasn’t changed. “None of the clothes fit? Similar thing happened to me, they weren’t expecting my beanpole body,” he says with a encouraging grin. 

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She really needs to figure out something to do about the field cover uncertainty.

She ducks her head. "I... had not realized I had been instructed to change clothes." If she knew he was in field cover she'd be being much more sorry, but she isn't sure, and doing that at a mage would be hell to pay for both of them. This should - be bearable enough, hopefully, whichever direction she's wrong in. Even on top of whatever she might get for the not in fact having changed clothes part. If she can hope.

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