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06 July 2008 @ 08:43 pm
Who: Alice and Laurent
When: Late afternoon
Where: Carnival Campgrounds

Alice put her hand up over her eyes, pulling her team of chestnut geldings to a stop. On the horizon she saw the camp of the carnival that could end up giving her the relief of finally having work after such a long while. She clucked to her horses and cracked the reins gently against their backs. "Almost there, boys," she reassured them as she approached the camp. Kicking up dust, as was usual for the movements of anyone or anything about the desolate landscape, the wheels rumbled across the dirt, the horses' hooves stamping across the ground. Her mother's face, and her father's flashed in her memory. She remembered peeking up from the large wagon bed as a child to peer at whatever outfit they were approaching, watching the rousites and riggers turn their heads to watch her magnificent, insanely vain mother sitting pretty on the wagon box, a parasol in her hand and her nose in the air.

As she got closer, she glanced around for a place to put her wagon, and when she finally came to a stop, she pushed the brake handle against one of the wagon wheels so that her two horses wouldn't be going anywhere without her. She looked around for rousties, to see if there was anyone she could cajole into taking her horses for water and a cool-out walk, but didn't see anyone who wasn't already busy. She lept gracefully down from high on the wagon box, and brushed a few stray hairs out of her face. She wore a pair of tight olive green ringmaster-style breeches, a white, puffy Victorian work blouse, and a pair of black knee-high riding boots. Her long hair was pinned up behind her head, styled like the Gibson girl's, and she put one leg out and leaned carefully on it. Crossing her arms, she stood in the direct sunlight, waiting. She knew how to attract management attention.
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Tamell: Laurent Deschanellmethuselan on July 7th, 2008 01:22 am (UTC)
Laurent watched the wagon come in across the grounds, the rising heat blurring the vision. When the wagon stopped he tossed the rag he was holding down to the rigger and climbed off the generator. "Finish up here," he said and he took long strides towards the wagon.

He was shirtless, and covered in grease from the generator he had been tuning all afternoon. He didn't know, but there was a shread of dried grass stuck in his hair like some bizzare accessory, and his boots were caked in dust. Yet, despite his appearance, he was a showman.

By the time he appeared before the woman his stance and expression all but screamed management. He gave the woman a light nod of his head in welcome, and his eyes scanned the wagon. He took particular note of the horses. Horses meant money. He smiled. He positively beemed.

"Afternoon Ma'am. Can I help you?"
fortunesalice on July 7th, 2008 01:29 am (UTC)
Alice's mouth opened into a smile, and she put out a dichotomy of a hand. Beautiful and soft on the back, calloused and hard on the palms, Alice's hands were like gloves from years of holding onto trapeze bars for dear life. Or perhaps not so dear.

"It's Miss," she purred in a soft yet clear voice. "Alice Webb. Adelaide Flight."

She paused just a moment to let both her legal and her show names sink in, just in case he should have heard of her act, or her mother's act. It was even possible he had heard of her father. There was only one Webb family in the carnivals of Van Demons land. "I'm a trained trapeze artist. Flying trapeze. I was hoping you might be willing to take on my act."
Tamell: Laurent Deschanellmethuselan on July 7th, 2008 02:05 am (UTC)
Laurent's eyebrows shot up at the mention of her name, and again he ran his eyes over the wagon. He decided not to say anything. Horses and Wagon aside, it was possible this girl was in impersonator. Her hand was calloused, which Laurent found confusing. Everything else about her was ladylike, that he could see. Maybe this girl really was a Webb, or a flyer at the least.

"We'd definitely be willing to take you on, Miss" he responded, releasing her hand and standing up tall. We're looking for trapeze acts at the moment." He walked over and patted the closest horse. "Of course, we'd have to see your work." He looked over at her, gauging her reaction.
fortunesalice on July 7th, 2008 02:23 am (UTC)
Alice nodded, smiling "Of course," She stood beside him and petted the horse's muzzle. "...if someone could take these two for water and a long cooling out."

She started unbuttoning her collared shirt as she climbed into the back of the wagon. She found the boot pull she used to take her tall boots off, and stuck the boot heels into the holder. Stepping on the back of the pull, she yanked her boot off, while continuing to unbutton her top, un-tucking it from her breeches. Underneath, of course, she was wearing a leotard, but she was the only one who knew that. She pulled the other boot off and looked down at Laurent from the back of the massive wagon.

"Do you have a setup already...because it may take a while before I can get my apparatus up." She pulled her shirt off and threw it on one of her trunks, and then disposed of her breeches and high socks. She dug around and found a pair of slippers, and rooted in one of her trunks for a tin. She smiled at him and hopped down from the back of the wagon and smiled at him, tilting her head ever so slightly. She brushed herself off carefully, in her pale pink leotard, and unpinned her red hair. She shook it and put it back up so that it was up in a ponytail.
Tamell: Laurent Deschanellmethuselan on July 7th, 2008 03:05 am (UTC)
Laurent was suprised when she dissapeared into the wagon. He stood with the horse for a moment, then waved over a nearby roustie and gave him instructions for the horses. He left the young one unhitching the wagon and walked around the back, trying to see what Alice was up to. He stopped in shock to see her strip down, and was relieved to notice the leotard she was wearing.

She jumped down beside him, and he shook his head, holding up his hands in an apology.

"Oh, I didn't mean now," he said, taking a step back. The costume was rather distracting, and he caught a glimpse of the young roust-a-bout gawking at her. He glared at the boy who quickly returned to his work.

Laurent stood between the boy and Alice, running a hand through his hair and finding the clump of grass which he tossed away. He gave her a weak smile. "We've been hiring for most of the week. You're free to join us, in a few days I'll see your act. Once your settled." He focused on her face, trying to remain a business man.
fortunesalice on July 7th, 2008 03:32 am (UTC)
Alice nodded "All right." She blushed. "I'm sorry. I just usually...my mother insisted that I always be prepared to perform." Alice was used to having to prove her talent in front of perspective employers, and she figured she should just prove herself to start with, and avoid sitting around unestablished.

She looked at the tin that she had placed beside her on the step on the back of the wagon, leading to the wagon bed. She looked down at it. It was a large, old, scuffed cookie tin. "Chalk," she said, embarrassed. She rooted around in another one of her trunks and took out a pretty tight blue dress, which she slipped on over her leotard. Hopping back down from the wagon bed, she smiled at him. "Thank you. Is there somewhere where I can setup my tent until then? Oh--" She paused for a second, standing on her tiptoes to pull one last stray piece of grass from his hair, "you missed one." She laughed.
Tamell: Laurent Deschanellmethuselan on July 7th, 2008 04:12 am (UTC)
Laurent turned to watch the roustie leading the horse away. He turned back sharply when Alice reached up to his head. He flinched away from her, stepping back and glaring at her for a moment. She was quite pretty, it was true. That didn't give her liberties. He cleared his throat and turned, gesturing towards a small gathering of tents in the background.

"Most of the performers are there," he muttered. He looked back to her, his face softening slightly when he saw her expression. This girl was confusing. He was used to this sort of behaviour in low grade carnies - cooch dancers maybe. Not in someone as high up as this girl claimed to be. He felt strange, for a moment he hoped he hadn't upset her. Not normally like him.

"There's food as well, but you'll have to make it yourself. I'll let the Management know you've arrived." He looked down at his feet, not sure how to proceed with this woman.
fortunesalice on July 7th, 2008 04:35 am (UTC)
"Oh!" She jumped carefully, recoiling and dropping the stray bit of grass in the process. "I'm sorry." She bit the inside of her bottom lip and then rolled both of her lips together, pursing them for a moment before relaxing. She had forgotten in all of her time with other carnies about the small percentage of people who didn't like to be touched. She made a mental note not to surprise him in that way again, and shook her head, finding herself unsettled by his obvious disapproval of her actions.

She took in a bit of breath, "All right," she said, reaching into the back of her wagon for the bag of stakes she used to pitch her tent. She wanted to plot out where she was going to place it, and she was glad that she had left her wagon somewhere accessible and out of the way. "I suppose I will go and set up then," she said softly, afraid that she had been too forward and had made the wrong impression.

She walked off with dignity in the direction of the other tents, even with the heavy bag over her shoulder, she had the walk of a duchess. She paused and looked over her shoulder, speaking to him. "I'll be able to manage the food situation. Thank you for telling them for me."
Tamell: Laurent Deschanellmethuselan on July 8th, 2008 08:31 am (UTC)
Laurent watched her walking away, feeling frustrated and confused. He took a step to go after her, but stopped himself. He was not one to go chasing after a woman. Besides, he wanted her to know that she couldn't just flirt with him and get away with it. Didn't he?

"Laurent!" he called out. "My name's Laurent... if you need anything." He turned away and sauntered back to the generator, passing the young roustie on the way. The boy gave him a look, and feeling angry, he took a loose swing at the boy who ducked out of the way.

"Get back to work!" he barked, returning to the generator and snatching a spanner from a stunned rigger. Women!
fortunesalice on July 8th, 2008 06:07 pm (UTC)
Alice turned herself around, flipping her red hair back over her shoulder, and looked at him as he addressed her. "All right," she called. "Thank you." She watched him walk away. He looked agitated, and she assumed that that must be from the sun. Everyone always had bit more of a temper when the sun was too hot.

She sighed and continued in the direction of the tents, determined to find some place to pitch her tent, and finally get out of the hot sun and into the shade. Gazing around her, she nodded to herself, satisfied. This could very well turn out to be quite a nice outfit.