About the Craft

 

A Harper's Life

 

Events in the Harperhall

 

Meet the Harpers

 

In the Vaults

What to do with Majori?

Back ] Up ]

Harper Office

The office is cheerful, the light reflecting off of whitewashed walls and ceiling. A pattern mimicking musical notation in colors runs along the tops of the walls, shelf upon shelf rising from the floor to meet it. Desks, cabinets and filing drawers are arranged about the room, workplaces for those whose job it is to keep the harpers and hall in order. The air is fresh, tangy with sea and hides and well-seasoned woods. Watching from a high shelf are three firelizards.

Ylisa seems to have succumbed to the urge to tidy up. She's standing at the 
tackboard, putting things in straight rows and removing long out-of-date 
notices.

Jueann walks in. She looks amused. "So are we ready to let Majori out?"

"Majori!" Ylisa repeats the name as if she'd only just remembered it, then 
runs a pointing finger down a neat row of notices on the tackboard until she 
comes to a drawing that bears some resemblance to the "apprentice." "Well, 
we won't be needing this any more!" She turns to answer Jueann. "Well, 
I've spoken to her again, and it's much as before. She's changed her mind 
about going back to her father, she's sorry she stole from us, she's sorry 
she tried to infiltrate us, and she'd like to stay - but she really doesn't 
want to be a harper."

Tony walks in from the ballroom.
Tony knocks

Jueann grins evilly as she takes her seat. "That's good. She's wasted on 
him. I have a better use for her." Leaning back in her chair, she waves to 
Tony. "Hiya."

Tony says, "I was just passing by and I heard voices"

Ylisa smiles, eyebrows rising. "You have?" She turns to the new arrival 
with, "Afternoon, Master Tony," then looks back to Jueann. "That would be 
useful - unless she's part of the Hall, we've no reason to keep Nabol, or 
for that matter, this Hold, from laying claim to her. And I /think/ I 
believe her."

Jueann grins, "I'm tired of using Yatyl and anyone else in the Ista Hold as 
a steward, I think we could use her as a headwoman. The inventory around 
this place has gotten pretty sloppy. Through no fault of anyone's, of 
course.

Ylisa's eyes widen in pleased surprise. "That's brilliant! She must have 
been trained in hold management - daughters of the major holds always are. 
And it wouldn't hurt Leyte and her cronies to have someone keeping an eye on 
them." She looks towards Tony. "What do you think of our problem lady? Do 
we trust her?"

Jueann looks over at Tony. "Give us your opinion on Majori?"

Tony says, "I think she has a very keen mind, and it needs to be put to use"
Tony says, "However, as she has fooled many people, i believe she has some 
very good harper qualities but the harper morals and ethics and some 
personal development would be needed"

Ylisa's brow creases a little as she looks thoughtfully at Tony. "So, when 
you said she didn't understand some of the basic ideas you were telling her 
about, was that put on, do you think?"

Jueann makes some notes, "I think if we keep the money in our hands and make 
her account for all items, we should be alright."

Tony says, "I'm not sure if it was a put on, but I would like to test her on 
that. But look at how long and to what extent she fool the hall, if she was 
being tested for a Hall Observer / Spy - or even an Actor, you would have to 
say she was very convincing"

Tony says, "And I believe she was being very very loyal - indeed almost an 
unstoppable loyalty, but its to who she owes it to, is the real issue"

Ylisa nods, lips pressed together. When she speaks, there's a note of 
frustration in her voice. "She was convincing at the time, but looking 
back, I can see where..." She shakes her head. "What really gets me is 
that right back when we interviewed her we had our doubts about her, and we 
spent all that time looking for Alebra, and we /still/ didn't see it!" 

Jueann shrugs, "It happens. We are only humans. My mother used to say, 
"hindsight is always better then foresight." Anyways. I think we should 
send for her and give her what we decided or should we wait for her father?"

Tony says, "Well, if we wait for her father, she will have two masters then 
governing her reactions, yours and his, I think that if she is really to be 
OURS, then it should be just the hall"

Ylisa agrees hastily. "Yes, her father isn't going to help anyone come to a 
considered decision." She goes on slowly, "Her loyalty? Not, I think, to 
Dennell. Not any longer. She's very bitter about him, and feels he misled 
her - and I think that is genuine." She pauses to think it through. "She was 
expecting to infiltrate the Harper Craft. She wasn't expecting him to want 
her to steal for him, and she's angry about that - it's as if doing it 
herself was different from supporting other people who did it, or maybe it 
brought home to her what he really is."

Jueann nods. "That's agreeing with the information I have. Personally, I 
rather we offer the position to her without her father knowing, then when he 
comes, he doesn't have a leg to stand on."

Ylisa grins. "Well, we really can't leave the poor girl in that room much 
longer. She'll be turning pale, like when the gardeners blanch celery by 
keeping it in the dark."

Jueann chuckles, "Why don't you go get her? I'm sure she's well done and 
agree to anything I have to say."

Ylisa is still holding the sketch, but sets it down on a desk. "Now?" She 
smiles again. "Why not. No time like the present." She heads towards the 
door.

Jueann is busy working at her desk. She seems absorbed in her work. Or is 
she? She is making anyone that enters wait until she's done writing this 
letter out.

Ylisa returns, ushering Majori ahead of her. "Here she is, Master Jueann." 
Her expression is unreadable as she waves the girl towards a spot on the 
floor in front of Jueann. She doesn't offer her a seat. 

Majori enters, a little ahead of Ylisa. She's looking rather neater than 
the harpers are used to seeing her, and her hair has been brushed to a shine 
rather than the usual ill-kempt dullness. She takes her place at the spot 
indicated by Ylisa, saying politely if a little apprehensively, "You wanted 
to see me, Master Jueann." Not shouting now, it seems.

Jueann finishes her letter, looking up at both at Ylisa and at Majori. 
Leaning back into her chair, the stylus in hand, "I did Majori. Have you 
thought about all the havoc you caused? And what I should do with you?"

Ylisa steps back, her part in this apparently done for now. She leans 
against the edge of a desk, watching and listening with a serious 
expression.

Majori bites her lip and swallows hard. When she speaks, it's quietly, and 
with no trace of her previous Tillek accent. "I have. You should probably 
punish me for stealing from you, and from the Hold and the other crafthalls. 
Or turn me over to them when you've finished with me. And then, I lied to 
you and joined the Craft under a false name..." She swallows again.

Jueann nods, "I see. And have you any clue what I should do with you?"
Ylisa just watches, intent on Majori's face. She's off to one side of the 
girl, so she can see her reactions. She nods slightly as Majori mentions 
lying. 

Majori shakes her head silently. Finally, "No. I don't know what you'd do 
to someone like me. There are... mines, or something, aren't there?" Her 
voice is shaky but she's keeping a measure of self-control. "Just, please, 
don't send me back to Nabol?"

Jueann frowns, "Now why should I send you there? It is obvious to anyone 
with half a brain that your father is ..." she sighs, trying to come up with 
a polite but apt word for him, "unable to appreciate what he had. I have a 
better use for you."

A slight smile plays across Ylisa's lips as she hears Jueann's words. She 
silently places her hands on the desk beside her and levers herself up to 
sit on it, then clasps her hands in her lap.

Majori's eyes widen slightly, but they're still full of mistrust and fear. 
"Use? /Appreciate?/" The last word is said in a bewildered tone, then she 
seems to get a grip on her apprehension, standing a little straighter and 
responding more firmly, "I am... entirely at your disposal."

Jueann grins evilly, "You sure are, young lady. When we accepted you into 
the craft, you agreed to obey any master and anyone in authority over you. 
You lost all rights to your rank when I accepted you. You are mine. And I 
plan to keep you."

There seems to be a mischievous smile on Ylisa's face. It's a good job 
Majori is staring at Jueann.

Majori certainly is: the Master's words have her hooked. "Keep me? Not 
send me away? That's..." Joy and relief flash briefly across her face, 
then she resumes her formal, slightly apprehensive expression. She's still 
bold enough to ask, "But... what are you going to do with me? I can't 
possibly be a harper after this. Even..." She relapses into prudent 
silence.

Jueann pushes over the letter she was writing. "Well, you have all the 
qualifications for headwoman which I need. This is a letter to your father 
saying, I'm keeping you and giving you the title of headwoman. however..." 
she pauses. "We still don't trust you. You have to earn that trust."

Majori, for once in her life, is speechless. 

Ylisa chuckles softly and drops a few words into the stunned silence. "If 
your parents trained you to run a place the size of Nabol, then our little 
Hall should cause you no difficulty. But we'll be keeping a close eye on 
your accounts and stock records. And do remember that you'll have the most 
observant pair of eyes in the entire Hall working for you."

Jueann grins, handing handing over the Affiliate knot. "You'll have the 
rank equal to journeyman but you answer to any master including me. And I 
want a full inventory of stock as soon as possible. Then we'll go from 
there."

Majori glances briefly at Ylisa, blinking in bewilderment, then looks back 
to Jueann. Hands rise as if of their own volition to twine fingers in front 
of her chest. "Headwoman? You want me to be headwoman? And run all the 
domestic arrangements for the Hall, and supervise the staff? That's what 
crafthalls and Weyrs have, because they don't have a Lady Holder, isn't it? 
It's what I was brought up to do, just... here, rather than in the Hold of 
whoever my father could marry me off to." She's warming to the idea; life 
returns to her eyes as she speaks, and by the time she's finished, there's 
the ghost of a smile on her face. She shoots a curious glance back at 
Ylisa. "Most observant...." That, she doesn't understand.

Jueann smiles, "You are wasted on your father. I have need for someone of 
your qualifications. So?"

Ylisa chuckles at Majori's question. "Leyte - who else! And believe me, 
she will not be at all happy to have someone set over her, when she's ruled 
the roost - at least in her own eyes - for Turns. She'll be keener-eyed 
than a watchdragon where you're concerned!" She smiles at Jueann. "We 
should find her some proper accommodation, Master Jueann. Or can she keep 
the room she's in?"

Majori takes the offered knot and slips it onto her arm. She's still 
sounding mildly stunned as she responds to Jueann. "I say... thank you, 
Master Jueann. I never dreamed you'd want to keep me here, let alone this!" 
After a few seconds, she turns to Ylisa with the beginnings of a grin and a 
note of confidence in her voice that suggests a return to home territory. 
"Don't worry, I can handle Leyte. I know the type." 

Jueann grins, "now if you all excuse me? I still have alot of work to do. 
Ylisa. Show her where the books are kept. I want a full inventory by the 
end of the sevenday."

Ylisa nods. "Certainly, Master Jueann. Just step over here, Majori? What 
we need is in this cabinet..." She beckons Majori with a smile, and sets to 
removing books from a shelf.

Majori follows Ylisa over to the shelves, and becomes engrossed in the 
explanation she's receiving.

Logfile from Ylisa

 

 

 

See a problem? Have a question or comment? Email us or visit us on the Moo.

Harper's Tale MOO Web SiteThe Masterharper's Office Graphics Copyright P. Rutins & J.Hamilton, 1999 

Design Copyright S. Minkus & L. Ledger, 2003

Content Copyright the Members of the Harper's Tale Harpercraft, 1999-present

Pern and the concept of the Harpercraft is the property of Ms. Anne McCaffrey, who kindly allows us to play in her world. Thank you!