Monday, May 11, 2009

When Two Drunken Fools Meet~ Vices and Virtues Virginia Post


There was a loud cry from the streets and Virginia jumped a mile as she heard a crash that sounded like broken glass right after the loud cry. She groaned and slowly woke out of her deep sleep. Lifting her heavy eyes opened, she realized that she was pretty far away from the theater and she slowly lifted herself up off the street she had been sleeping in. Next to her was a strange bottle and she figured that she had gotten good and drunk the night before. That would explain the pounding headache and her strange desire to release her insides. She coughed. Ugh, she even smelled like alcohol. What was wrong with her? She never drank. Not even when she was in London, did she take a wiff of ale. Well, if she had ever proven the fact that she was far from a lady, it was now.

As memories of the night before and Monsieur Fournier’s unwanted advances came back to her memory, she picked the bottle up and threw it at the near by wall, watching it crash. Stupid theater. Stupid actors. Stupid, stupid Monsieur Fournier. She wasn’t a courtesan or a whore to be treated in such a matter. She was an actress. There was a difference despite what some people thought. How was she ever going to get rid of the man whom she currently owned her job too? She frowned. Well, part of it was her own fault, for allowing the man to advance on her when she wanted Nash to have a job if he came. So that was her undoing and she didn’t even know if Nash was coming or not.

“Damn.” She muttered kicking at the broken pieces of glass and wrapping her cloak around her thin shoulders a bit to keep the chill of the night air out. She wandered through the streets of Bath, weaving in and out of them, towards the Pump rooms. Thinking that maybe the waters would help with her hang over. In any normal case, Virginia stayed far away from the higher society as she was still rather afraid of meeting her Grandmother on the streets and the terror she was sure her grandmother would create for her if such meeting accured.

Keeping in the shadows of the streets, Virginia weaved her way in and out of the alley’s of Bath to keep from being seen. It took her some time to reach Church Street from where she was. She had to stop every now and then to let the liqueur that was upsetting her stomach come up and to rest. What she desperately needed was to drink water or perhaps to drink more hard liqueur and to create a double hang over. She remembered Nash telling her that the best way to get rid of a hang over was to create another one. She wondered if that was why drunks always stayed drunk.

After having reached Church Street, Virginia decided it was safe to come out of the shadows and slipped out of an alley. She did not see the stranger who crossed her path at the same time as she crossed and as a result went flying to the sidewalk, face down. She was just barely able to keep her face from hitting the side walk, but as a result of falling, scrapped her knees and put a whole in her stockings. She plopped down on the street to examine her bruised knee and glared up to the stranger who dared crossed her path. Those stockings were expensive and she didn’t think she was going to be able to replace them. “Damn!” She muttered extremely annoyed.

Edward’s hands swept over his soft leather breeches and became thankful that they were spared the mud that splashed his way upon the girl's fall. When his eyes settled on his top boots, Edward's mood darkened. This was no way to enter the Pump Rooms and that’s exactly where he had intended to go before being assaulted by this light skirt. Out of decorum he was forced to offer her a hand but she gave him a dark look that spoke volumes. “There is no need to apologize.” He said mockingly.

Now that her skirts and being where filled with mud splash and her knee was bruised, Virginia’ spirits grew worst than they were before. She pushed herself up in an un setty manner and gave the gentleman another dark look. How dare he presume that she was at fault. Any gentleman would offer his apologies and inquire on her health, perhaps pay for the ruin clothing caused by his carelessness. Apparently this man was not going to do so.

“Offer my apologies?” Virginia asked annoyed. “Why should I offer my apologies, you are the one who ruined my clothes and caused me to bruise my knee. Do you have any idea how many weeks I will have to work to pay for these clothes?”

“Then you should take better care where you step.” The woman looked indignant and was about to protest before he interrupted. “Perhaps you should steal another dress. That shouldn’t be hard I assume?”

Virginia’s eyes grew very dark and the color rose to her cheeks. How dare he presume she stole her dress! She was not a thief she was an actress and her grandmother had paid for the dress anyway. Well maybe she did steal it from her grandmother, but wasn’t it her’s if it was given to her? She glared at the man in front of her.

“My grandmother who is a very great lady, gave the dress and the stockings to me. She would be very upset to find that such a gentleman of your status caused such distress on her darling granddaughter. For your information, I am not a thief nor am I beggar. Not every woman you meet who on the streets is a thief.”
Edward’s head was pounding, and his mood turned sour. “Oh no? Pardon me. If not a thief then surely a doxy. Besides, you are doing it much too brown. Now excuse me, I have more important things to do than speak to you.”

Glaring at the annoying man, Virginia felt her stomach turn inside out again and had to swallow hard to keep everything down. She closed her eyes and opened them, feeling very queasy. “You think I made it a priority to speak with you? I wouldn’t speak to you again if my life depended on it. You are far from a gentleman.” She said still in a bad mood. “ I think now is a good time to part ways. Good day sir.” She added and dashed into the nearest alley.

Edward ignored the last rattle of the girl’s words. Even if he wanted to hear the hammering in his head drowned out everything else. Instead he rubbed his temples, avoided looking into the light and headed for the Pump Rooms.

(Written in full with Edward Ponsonby, Sophy Whyndham’s cousin.)

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