A hand pressed against the back of her leg. Corrie turned, frowning at the familiarity, but the man sitting nearest her was intent on the nearby stage. She replaced his near empty wine glass with a full one. For all the notice he took, with the dancing girls taking his full attention -- if you could call wiggling around in too tight dresses dancing. Still, Philip Lovell enjoyed it and it was his birthday.
None of the girls looked familiar. From Elizabeth City most likely, or Offers. No local girl would degrade herself like that, even for the Lovells.
Corrie turned to the next table. There were more empty glasses than guests crowded into the room, and surely it had been just ten minutes since she'd last collected them
A hand grabbed her arm. "Wait."
Corrie scowled, until she recognized the speaker -- Caleb the youngest of the Lovell brothers. She managed something resembling a polite smile.
"I have work to do." Let me go, little boy. "Drinks to--"
"We all have drinks." He rubbed a finger along her arm. "I'm bored with the entertainment though."
"I'll look in the cupboard for more."
"That's an excellent idea!" Caleb reached again for Corrie's arm. "Let's g'nuhh!"
The music stopped and all eyes were on Corrie, and the miserable wretch curled up on the floor.
"Well!" A gray-haired lady stepped forward. "Did anyone notice what Corinne did wrong there?"
A hand went up. "She, uh, kneed the host's son in the balls?"
"No . . . I mean, yes, she did knee Caleb in the balls, but I was referring to the fact she spilt wine on her tray. That's a no no. Okay, Corinne, back to your seat. Lisa, this time you be the waitress; Caleb, anytime you're ready."
Opening: Xenith.....Continuation: anon.