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Author Topic: A Slice of Humble Pie  (Read 3408 times)

Leander Boffin

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A Slice of Humble Pie
« on: February 25, 2015, 03:45:00 PM »
Six times Leander had been let down! Who knew there was so much resentment against him amongst his neighbors? It didn’t help that by the last one, he was quite done with the fake politeness and told Mrs. Chubb that “she needn’t worry about whether it would upset her guests, after all they were sharing a hole with her.” But that thing other Hobbits called failure, Leander called breakfast. And he was not leaving until the entire buffet was cleared! The reminder of food, as he stomped through the streets of Hobbiton, made his stomach growl. What an immediate reminder that this was not exactly breakfast...so much as lunch. Yes. The curly-haired lad looked at the clear blue sky, and recognized the position of the sun - it was midday. And he hadn’t had anything since that last bit of waybread he’d been given by the Brandybucks that had set him on his way back to Hobbiton!

So hurried his pace and began to turn down potential doors, not just because he was still looking for a home...but because he was now also looking for a place to eat, and that accounted for the lack of money he had! Now, Mrs. Hardbottle over there made delicious pie...and the thought of pie stopped Lee in his tracks. Now he ran through the dust streets, in search for that hole he had once been welcome at, in hopes that he could still find her home… Chances were higher than for the rest of the houses that he be turned away, what with none of the people he had visited having a personal history with him...but...had she such bitter memories of him?

Ruby Goodbody.[/color] Once he had made her laugh and found delight in her every smile, but after their last falling out, Leander could not get drunk without thinking at least once of her scathing comments. If anything...those few times he had woken at various inns around the Shire? Leander wouldn’t have been surprised if someone had told him that Ruby had done them. There was enough fire in her pies and in her soul for her to spare for one more slap. Ah, those pies! He had only seen the competition once, at the hands of a Took baker who could make a tart to fall in love with - but he had said nothing of the kind to Ruby, of course. And now he would say nothing of the kind again. For this was to be a bittersweet meeting, if not outright bitter.

Leander Boffin hesitated to knock on the yellow round door for once. He was sure even the flowers in the garden were frowning at him, telling him he and all his stories and whimsical tunes could go and be given to any other maid! He had once given her a red rose, “a ruby for the ruby”. Now he saw his mistake too clearly, in the dotted daisies and marigolds in the front yard...but if anything was to remind him of his mistakes, was the window by the door. It led to her kitchen, he knew, but Leander couldn’t really see much through it. He resolved to knock, and knock he did - he could not let his mistakes get the goat of him now, especially when he was starving at Ruby Goodbody’s door!

The young lad gave a dramatic sigh after the knock, and only then did he realize there was a bell by the door now - how had he missed it? For better effect, he rang at the door for one more try. Thoughts of dashing away before Ruby could shoo him away like  peddler presented themselves to him - how dare he come back! After having travelled! Because he had been disowned! And yet, for some reason, a familiar face whose behavior he could predict was needed now. At the very least, he needed a whiff of the kitchen...a sign of a better time indeed...

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A Slice of Humble Pie
« Reply #1 on: February 26, 2015, 05:03:00 AM »
The state of Ruby Goodbody's kitchen would suggest that the poor woman had somehow found an explosion in her home, with the state of the walls, sides and floors; but, those who knew her, knew best that this was just a temporarily mess, made by flour, butter and anything else that had managed to find its way into a bowl for her to bake. Sweet breads, salt breads, small cakes, medium cakes, sweet pies, meat pies - anything you could possibly bake, had been backed and was on her kitchen table by this point. The demands of Poppy Goodbody were large, but little Ruby could not blame her, for her mother was having some folk around for dinner in the evening, and did not have time to do all the baking herself. The young hobbit's face was covered in flour, from her wiping her forehead due to the heat that was in her home, and her apron and dress were a little worse for wear, but she was doing rather well. She was making some kind of cheese bread, rolling it out, folding it over, rolling it out, folding it over. I need two more berry pies, 6 more loaves, and three more cakes.... She reeled off the list in her head, trying to remember her mothers order, having adamantly advising that she could remember it all, but the poor little lady really couldn't, for it had been one more pie, 7 loaves and two more cakes that Ruby required, but she would find this out later when she had to take it all around.

All the while, she had a stew bubbling away, ready for her to eat later when she had managed to sort her mother out; but Ruby doubted that she would have any time to eat it, and in her haste, she had put far too much in the pot! Anyone would think she was feeding an entire army! Not just one Hobbit! As she folded the door once more, she heard, what she could only assume was a knock at the door, and tried to look out of her window, but unable to see her guest, she huffed. "Give me strength!" She muttered through gritted teeth, throwing the dough back on the table, and dusting down her hands on her apron, but her guest was clearly an impatient one, as the ring of her doorbell followed. The short woman wandered out of her kitchen and to her door, swinging it right open, her lips pursed, one hand holding onto the door handle, the other placed irritably on her wrist. The visitor, however, was not a person she was expecting at all. "Leander Boffin, the wandering Hobbit. You know, people around here reckon you're a vagabond." She spoke as calmly as she could, trying to soothe the will to slam the door in his face and have nothing more to do with him, but Ruby was trying to get herself to be a little more... open to people's faults. "But I think you're just a drunken moron." Letting go of her door handle, folding her arms and looking at him, taking in the entire sight of him, frowning lightly at him as her eyes drew back up to his. "Get in." She waved her arm to the inside of her house, gesturing him, almost demanding him to get off her doorstep. The last thing she needed was for the neighbours to see him on her doorstep, for no doubt word would quickly reach her mother and she would never hear the end of it!

Once he had stepped in, she quickly shut the door behind him and bustled herself into the kitchen. "I would ask how you are... but right now I really don't care." She called behind her, having left him in the hall as she tended back to her dough. "Oh. If you place a FINGER on my food, you will find yourself in the river!" Wiggling her little nose as she looked down at the mess on her kitchen side, she could not help but have her curiosity piqued by the sudden arrival of, what she thought, was a long lost friend. "What brings you back here? Thought you were out looking for adventure."
[/font]

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Leander Boffin

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A Slice of Humble Pie
« Reply #2 on: February 26, 2015, 06:24:00 PM »
The wait for the homeowner was not very long. It wasn’t ten minutes before finally, the Hobbit lass emerged from her Hobbit-hole and attended him - all while drenched in sweat and various ingredients that could probably make its own pie in quantity! But she made her words worthwhile - Ruby Goodbody did not waste a single word, nor a single cup of flour in her kitchen. “Leander Boffin, the wandering Hobbit. You know, people around here reckon you're a vagabond.” That did the work to render Lee wordless. Wandering. Had the gossip spread so easily?! Only a day after arriving? Trust those twittering old ladies - he blamed Mrs. Chubb for this! “But I think you're just a drunken moron.” Leander flinched at her blunt words - why, he deserved them. “Get in."” And that...he did not! The lad did not complain to Ruby’s judging examining of him, but - why was she inviting him in? Oh. It’s lunchtime. Of course.

The two young Hobbits walked into the very well kept Goodbody home - what else could you expect from a home ruled by the busybody Hobbit in the Shire? And yet, Leander’s head was ducked, not just chastised by his old friend’s sharp words, but out of the weight from all the memories of this familiar hole. “I would ask how you are... but right now I really don't care.” There she went again, flinging fire wherever she walked! Except...The smell of business in the kitchen was overwhelming! The young lad’s feet began to waver and turn to the left...where he knew the kitchen was. and where Ruby had scampered in, no doubt to look after something she was cooking. Mmm! Stew! “Oh. If you place a FINGER on my food, you will find yourself in the river!”

Leander took three steps back from the strength of Ruby’s threat. “Wouldn’t dream of it! I know you too well to test you, Miss Ruby.” The honorific couldn’t do any less but help, couldn’t it? He overcame his sudden shyness, but determined not to touch a single pie or spoon in the kitchen, lest he summon the Goodbody wrath. Ruby reminded him about the reason of his visit with a blunt, “What brings you back here? Thought you were out looking for adventure.” Looking for adventure?! The spark of Ruby’s words fell on him, and he exploded in indignation. “What am I, a Brandybuck? My family dumped me at Bree without a single goodbye, so that wasn’t me looking for adventure!” Trust Ruby Goodbody to use anything she might have heard about against you!

However, his overwhelming rudeness finally caught up with him. The Boffin placed his hand in his pockets for comfort and drew back a step or two. He fixed his tone, too, and his posture. “Ruby…” he mumbled. “I - I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to snap. My family disowned me. And I had it coming.” His throat constricted, and if his words were rather short next up, it was because of this. “It’s true. I’m a vagabond and a moron and I shouldn’t be here. But this is the truth, Ruby Poppet.” He fell into his old nickname for the blond lass, and inclined his head humbly. “I’m looking for a home. And a decent job, to move to an inn. Try and make something out of my mess of a life.” He shook his head. “And I wouldn’t either blame you or be surprised if you threw me out right now for my impudence. After all, it’s nearly lunchtime. Wouldn’t want to stop you from serving whatever guests you may have.”

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A Slice of Humble Pie
« Reply #3 on: May 16, 2015, 02:17:00 AM »
"And yet you still manage it somehow, Leander." Scoffing, she placed a hand on her hip, glaring at him as he suggested that he could never test her; but he always did, no matter what it was he was doing or how he was doing it, he got under her skin and she didn't like it at all. Nobody was even allowed to do that, but this particular Boffin seemed to do it with ease, and he didn't even have to open his mouth to do so. When he snapped, she fell silent for a moment, looking at him with annoyance in her eyes, for she knew a Brandybuck who wasn't as bad as Leander was suggesting at the time. "I fear you may be worse than a Brandybuck!" She could have chosen her words more carefully, but nevertheless, she didn't, and she would soon find out why her words should have been held behind her teeth.

When he told her that he had been disowned, the hardened heart softened a little. She couldn't imagine what it was like to be disowned by one's family, but something was niggling at her, telling her that maybe he was right, and maybe he did deserve it. For the first time in forever, however, she remembered her manners, making sure not to say what she thought, and instead to say something a little more sensible and caring. "I... am sorry to hear that."

Her eyes fluttered closed as he began calling her poppet, if there was one thing she hated it was being called poppet, and not because she disliked the word, but more that it was a term of endearment, and it was coming out of a Boffin's mouth. "Leander. Please stop calling me poppet." She gave him a stern look to let him know that she wasn't joking before turning back to the pies to concentrate, realising what Leander was asking. It wasn't that she didn't want to help, but she couldn't have him under her roof - not even for a day. "If you came here looking for a bed, you came to the wrong place."

With a defeated sigh, she stopped working so hard on the pie and thought hard, chewing on the inside of her lip, as she thought. She felt terrible for not offering him a spare bed, but what would her mother think? What would the neighbours say? Oh the gossipers would gossip and the young Hobbit just couldn't have that - it simply wouldn't do. "Look - I may not be able to give you a bed, but if you need to eat, there's stew in the pot that you can help yourself to." Ruby waved a hand to the pot that was sat above a fire, grabbing a ladle and holding it out to Leander until he took it off her. She wasn't all that heartless; she might not have been able to offer him a bed, but she could offer him food and feel good about it. The young Goodbody was not exactly charitable, but she couldn't turn away someone in need, and even though Leander had not told her the whole story, he'd told her enough to twang at one of her heartstrings.

"I can't promise it's edible, it's quite rushed. I had more pressing matters." She patted her hands in front of her, removing as much flour from them as she possibly could, but it still didn't seem to be enough when she reached up to itch her nose, leaving flour substances behind on her face. Honestly, it looked like one of Gandalf's Fireworks had been let off in her kitchen to create chaos and destruction everywhere. With a heavy sigh, she stopped rushing with the pies, putting them all to on side for her mother to take and bake when she came around and instead, plonked herself quite heavily into a dining chair, her face falling into her hands as she rested for the first time since she woke up this morning. "I imagine there is some kind of fresh juice in the pantry if you need a drink." She murmured, only lifting her face up when she had managed to calm herself down.
[/font]

"It does not do to leave a live dragon out of your calculations if you live near him.”

Leander Boffin

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A Slice of Humble Pie
« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2015, 06:32:00 PM »
Ah, Ruby Goodbody. She was a mystery for the entire Shire, in Hobbiton society, the little shrew of Poppy Goodbody’s that never came out for fresh air, to court, to make friends, to even look at a flower. She could only bake, retort or sleep, some had said before Leander had met her. And when he had, he had made it his personal mission at the very least kiss her chubby little hand and lead her to a dance. A mad dream, anyone would think, for someone so spirited as Ruby, but he had done it, so long ago. And while someone who did not know her would have thought her condolences to Leander were not sincere, the drunkard himself had heard her anguish, glee and fury all in one day, nearby and not so long ago. No, it was not surprised to hear her sympathy, but it was slightly painful to the lad because it reminded him of the lovely lass he had lost.

In his explanation he reached a slight snag when she demanded him to stop calling her poppet, and while he didn’t address it, he made a mental note not to fall into the habit again. But for all his honest heart-pouring, Ruby was sensible and stern about one thing: what any other sensible Hobbit would have done. She looked at him in his lost light green eyes, and said, “If you came here looking for a bed, you came to the wrong place.” And while Lee shouldn’t have been hurt, he did hang his head and pursed his lips, as if that could stop his heart from feeling the blow. If it could be called a blow.

Ruby sighed when she saw him sag, and at least tried to explain herself. “Look - I may not be able to give you a bed, but if you need to eat, there's stew in the pot that you can help yourself to.” Eat. Ah, the way to a Hobbit’s heart - food. But right now it seemed like his stomach and his heart were in different places, because he really wished to go back to the days where he was weak and just a drag on his family so long as he could go back to Ruby’s care. But back in those days, it had been so obvious the match was not to be. And even was even more painfully obvious now. What was a drunken, wandering sod like him going to try with the respectable Ruby Goodbody?

Right now, his stomach was winning, especially when the pies were smelling glorious. “I can't promise it's edible, it's quite rushed. I had more pressing matters.” The lady finally left the dough she was working on alone, and the flour she was leaving all around the kitchen made the place look like a bizarre, snowed-in land. And the flour on her face seemed to bring out the sparkling blue in her eyes. Once her pies were set to the side, she went and sat on a dining chair for a rest. “I imagine there is some kind of fresh juice in the pantry if you need a drink.” She was exhausted, of course, what with baking all day as she did…

So Lee excused himself with a curt nod, and rushed to the pantry for two glasses of orange juice for the two. He truly wasn’t thinking of wooing her back - he forbid himself from it, what nonsense it would be to even think of playing that same game again! - he was only thinking of her huddled up on the dining chair. He was by her side in an instant. “I think the walk here may have been a bit tiring, yes,” he admitted, “But a day of standing about the hot kitchen all summer day isn’t exactly a walk at the Far Downs.” Not a single drop spilled in carelessness, he offered her one of the glasses. “To be honest...the offer of lunch is more than the kindness I deserve, Ruby.” No nickname, no joking, no honorifics. “So, I really must thank you….thank you.”

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A Slice of Humble Pie
« Reply #5 on: July 24, 2015, 12:58:00 AM »
As Lee hung his head, Ruby's hand instinctively reached out, though, it was not far enough. The blonde had often done this whenever he'd hung his head, more as a sign of comfort, but now did not feel right, and instead, she let it fall back to the tea-towel that was held in her other hand. It felt like it had been an awfully long while since she'd last seen him, and though she hoped he had gone away to get better, she couldn't help but feel that she could have done more to help. It was hard, being from a respectable family, for certain standards were expected to be met, and Poppy had every intention of making sure her little Ruby would marry the right person, and the longer she thought about it, Lee wasn't that person. He wasn't a good person, nor was he a bad person; one might sin on the odd occasion or give into temptation, but there was some good deep down in there, even if Ruby had forgotten about it. That was the trouble with bad personality traits, they were generally the ones that people remembered in the long run and overshadowed the good things about a person that would normally make the horrid things forgivable. Ruby was guilty of this, judging people on their flaws rather than their strengths, and one day perhaps she would learn her lesson, but today was not that day.

The little hobbit took the drink from her 'friend' and placed it down on the table, wiping her forehead with her hand before grabbing an apple from the bowl, and picking up a knife from next to it - feeling almost faint from the combination of heat, hard work, and the fact she hadn't stopped and eaten all day, though, she much doubted an apple would make much different. She did not have the heart to eat her own stew, with how much heart she'd put into the pies, the thoughts causing her to sigh a little as she began to slice the apple up into little pieces like she often did. Ruby Goodbody never ate an apple whole, making sure to cut it up into wedges before removing the pips and core, disposing of them in a little dish as she often did. "I've never felt so tired in all my life. I don't feel like I've slept." She mumbled, trying to concentrate on the apple before her, delicately slicing it up into manageable parts. "Though you look a little worse for wear." It wasn't meant in a mean way, or as a chide, but merely as a concerned observation.

As the words of thanks fell from his lips, Ruby found herself caught off guard, and this became more evident when the knife cutting the apple slipped, slicing open her thumb, if only a little bit, quickly followed by a yelp and a clatter on wood. Abandoning the apple, she brought the towel from her apron up, wrapping it around her thumb and looking around for her little bandages that she often kept for slips like this. Such was the life of a cook that one would offer injury themselves, whether by burning, slicing or otherwise. Her eyes shut for a moment, and she tried to take a deep breath, collecting her thoughts, and yet, the throbbing in her thumb drawing her back to the little splatters of blood on her towel which she doubted very much that she'd be able to get out. After a moment, she dropped the cloth, observing her thumb, which was still bleeding, quite unsettlingly, before muttering to herself, as if scolding, "That's the third time this month, you dullard." She had neither mind nor energy to tend to it, and instead, sat staring at it as it lay in her lap. Her free hand came up to massage the bridge of her nose, trying to calm a headache that threatened her. "You don't need to thank me, Lee." She finally responded, holding her injured hand in her healthy one, offering him a half smile. "It's just food, no skin off my back, plus my pantry is always full."
[/font]

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Leander Boffin

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A Slice of Humble Pie
« Reply #6 on: July 24, 2015, 03:24:00 AM »
Ruby, Ruby. Always working herself too hard. Leander had seen the worst sides of her (courting someone always did the trick) and he had also seen her at her most vulnerable. And she reached that point a lot, within the safety of her own home. This was another one of those times, despite her acceptance of the drink that Lee brought for her. He hadn’t been concerned for her for a very long time...practically since he last saw her. It hadn’t been a very merry occasion. He fully expected her to join in, picking up the stew and eating it with him, but she wouldn’t budge from the kitchen, and neither would he. “I've never felt so tired in all my life. I don't feel like I've slept.” This only made Lee’s alarm grow. Was it the Goodbodys that had a history of heart failure quite early in their lives? Or was it some other Hobbiton family? Lee’s eyebrows crinkled in worry, because somebody had to help Ruby, and he believed there was nobody to notice and do so. “Though you look a little worse for wear.” Had Ruby not expressed her exhaustion earlier, Lee would have snorted and replied in a sarcastic manner, but not now.

And yet, he had been so focused in apologizing to his host that for one moment he looked away and thanked her - and she was cutting herself with a knife! Lee gasped in surprise at the sudden lesion, but he needn’t have dropped in to help. Ruby was used enough to such mishaps. Lee observed as she went and picked up a towel to stop the bleeding temporarily in search of a bandage for the wound. The tired little Hobbit lass then cupped the bridge of her nose with her forefinger and thumb. Lastly, she addressed Leander after having taken care of the wound with a disapproving mutter at herself. “You don't need to thank me, Lee.” Lee’s eyes widened, because he certainly had much to protest at this - not thank her? Not thank her? Why, wasn’t she been kinder than so many of his neighbors that wouldn’t even look him in the eye when he had actually hurt her, many a season ago? “It's just food, no skin off my back, plus my pantry is always full.”

It was almost going back to that summer when he had been thirty-one, young and lazy and carefree. Where he had recited an old tale he had heard as a child in Rivendell, and added many unnecessary and creative liberties of his own to expand the story, to the Green Dragon, and still the blond shrew in the back would not smile at him. All that had taken her to smile was when he had bowed after the grand finale, and sneezed like a kitten. This brought laughter, of course, even that of his own sister, and Lee did not mind. If anything, his ears had perked in wonder because, from the back, a sonorous snort-laugh echoed all the way to him, and his eyes had shone as if he had been the one responsible for bringing out laughter from the lady and not the sneeze. And it would take many mishaps like this one to finally lead her to accept just one dance from him. That dance...had been unforgettable. Many of their dances had been. Leander was jarred back to those days, when he believed that he could do anything just to make her smile. Like a boy.

So he reached out to the hand enveloped in the towel, and first massaged the wrist softly. This led him to lift up her little chubby paw from the fabric without any protest. Then he inclined his head lovingly, and pressed his lips against the wound, tender and caring. The pressure had led the wound to stop bleeding, at least for a minute, so there was no mess. But he wouldn’t have cared much if there had been. The truth is, he was already being foolish - he had gotten rid of the chance of his lunch - but the Leander that now kissed Ruby was not the one that had been tossed about Eriador without a clue of where he was going, but the same fool that had been daring enough to call her “the true Green Dragon of Bywater” nearby, long ago.

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A Slice of Humble Pie
« Reply #7 on: August 31, 2015, 01:21:00 AM »
It wasn't easy to look past their differences and concentrate on the now - perhaps he was different, and maybe he could, one day, prove to Ruby this fact, and even if she was, at this very moment, giving him the benefit of the doubt; she imagined any other day she would probably not so easily look passed his past indiscretions. She was very much like her mother in that aspect, though, she often wished she was a little more tolerant than that - just so she may not have removed Leander from her life so easy. Poppy Goodbody had hardly approved, it would have been hypocritical of her to outright say no to the situation, being that her father wasn't exactly ideal for Poppy, but that his money had been enough for her parents to overlook the obvious mismatch. Ruby wasn't going to marry into money - no, if she was going to marry, it would be for love, no matter which vagabond stole her heart in the process. That wasn't to say that Leander was said vagabond, but he'd certainly given it a good go, but Ruby hardly believed in second chances when it came to relationships. If they messed up the first time, what exactly was stopping them from messing up every time thereafter? Nothing, that's what was stopping them, absolutely nothing.

The tender movements of Leander Boffin had set off a domino effect of emotions that not even Ruby Goodbody could describe, despite being a woman of many words and less actions. Her eyes watched as her finger was pressed against his lips, and for the first time in an awfully long time, she saw Leander. No, not the vagabond who had disappeared, nor the mess of a man she knew when they fell apart, but the caring one, the one that could make her squeak-laugh without ever really trying... those familiar eyes that drew no judgements, that locked with hers without tearing away, not even for a second. How she had fallen for those eyes so many times, when she had meant to be angered by his actions - those soft greens that had often searched for her own blues, and that drew comfort whenever she couldn't find any within herself. What Ruby Goodbody did next was unexpected, especially for the dragon who would rather reduce a man to cinders than admit she cared anything for him. Leaning forward, in a slow, yet fluid motion, her delicate small nose slipping passed his as she tugged her gentle hand away from his mouth and replaced it with her own lips. A momentary slip - she would assure herself later, but right now, the warm tingle in her chest was drowning out the feeling that she shouldn't be doing this, allowing her lips and his to lock without thought, and for a moment, she forgot her anger and bitterness, and those metaphorical butterflies swamped her.

What a strange thing for a Goodbody to do - had her mother not taught her better? That her emotions were to be controlled and not allowed to flood all other judgements, for it was in those moments where life-trashing mistakes were made, and she would tell herself this was one of those situations. Allowing herself to linger there for a minute or two, she only pulled away to breathe, trying to steady her own heartbeat, chewing on her bottom lip - but the butterflies could not keep still the simmering rage. She was... was she angry? No not at him, she was angry at herself, for allowing the tenderness to cloud her judgment. Leander wasn't at fault here, and after another moment, she swept up from her chair and away from him, placing her hands on the counter and staring out of the window into the hills, but the grass seemed to draw his eyes back into her forethoughts. Oh, bebother it! That Boffin was doing her no good in her house, and as fingers scraped across the surface beneath them, she gritted her teeth, trying to still her words before she said anything that she might later regret. "Eat your stew, then grab yourself some supplies from the cupboard." She muttered, she wasn't just going to turn him away completely - it had been her mistake, but if he pushed it, she'd be sending him on his way with an empty stomach.
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"It does not do to leave a live dragon out of your calculations if you live near him.”

Leander Boffin

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Re: A Slice of Humble Pie
« Reply #8 on: March 18, 2016, 03:34:31 AM »
The slip in Leander’s actions was as unexpected as its reward - and there was a reward, indeed. For he could barely brush his lips against the wounds of dear Ruby’s before she slipped her hand out of his grasp and instead brought him to her face for a kiss with her own lips.  And this pleasant turn of events would usually throw Lee down another pit of mistakes, because he wanted to go past the sweeter days of their relationship to when they were infatuated and a little wilder. But it wasn’t time yet, so Lee let Ruby’s tender lead remain until she wished to pull away - it was nicer than going off on his own.

When she pulled back, Ruby was trembling before Lee. And a cold stab in his stomach made him afraid again - what if she blamed, him, he had gone too far, she was a respectable lady and not his mistress to play along like that…! But all little Ruby did was grit her teeth and spit out a restrained answer. "Eat your stew, then grab yourself some supplies from the cupboard." Orders that didn’t fly over Leander’s head. Still, the Boffin lad took a deep breath, closed his eyes, then scrambled without another word. If he made a fuss, reacted in some way that bothered Ruby, he was out on the streets with an empty stomach again.

The stew was the best thing Leander had eaten in months counting for anything he had grabbed in Buckland or Frogmorton on his way back to Hobbiton. So Leander snarfed down the thing in minutes, choosing to grab what was before him before RUby could change her mind and… But as he neared the last spoonfuls of the stew, Lee came to a pause, and grit his teeth. It seemed only too cruel to come here, do an impulsive thing like that, eat Ruby’s food, and dance back out again. So Lee walked back to Ruby with a hesitant step and a bowed head before raising his voice.

“I’m sorry if that bothered you, Ruby,” he began, quite honestly. “I hope you don’t take me for an ingrate. This is all more kindness than I deserve.”
« Last Edit: October 13, 2016, 06:03:12 PM by Leander Boffin »

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Re: A Slice of Humble Pie
« Reply #9 on: April 25, 2020, 02:29:20 AM »
Ruby stood in silence for quite a while, not taking a moment to reply to anything that Leander said until he spoke of the kindness she had shown him. She had never really thought about it, never really given it much credence than it had warranted. Since he’d left, she’d begun to piece her life together properly, looking to the likes of Took’s to marry and otherwise spend her life with. Leander had left, and made it quite clear that he was unpredictable, and yet, all the same, she still felt something for him. These were feelings she’d been bottling up as much as she could. He was her favourite song. Her favourite colour. Her favourite thought. Yet, all the same, he was erratic, and that simply wouldn’t do. “I will not be taken for a fool again, Leander.” She grumbled, finally slamming dirty dishes and the likes into the basin to wash them. “If your intention is to walk through my door, take my hospitality, to disappear once again for adventure, then I will tell you now, that door will never open for you again.” Her words were sharp, meant to carve and cut at the young man.

She took off into her pantry, quickly making up a basket of breads, cheeses and fruit that she had in stock. Ruby would simply go to the market tomorrow to replenish. She was cold, but if there was one thing the dragon of The Shire was, it wasn’t cruel. She’d never leave anyone without food – but she knew he would be able to find a bed at the inn as many a travelling hobbit did. She brought back stock, placing the basket before him. “I don’t need your niceties anymore, Leander. I’m not here to be pitied.” She didn’t look at him once as she made away from the table and out of the front door of her home and into the delightful garden that she had made for herself. Ruby took in a deep breath from the air around her – a clean and welcoming air, one that would permit her to cry if it was necessary, but she did not. Instead, she stood there, looking down at the life that was continuing around her.
« Last Edit: April 25, 2020, 02:29:44 AM by Ruby Goodbody »

"It does not do to leave a live dragon out of your calculations if you live near him.”

 


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