Trust Me

Silver Oak Bed & Breakfast — The Kitchen

The kitchen of the unusual B&B is old-fashioned and homey. The table is oak and sturdy. The floor is smooth, fitted stone. The walls are a combination of plaster, wood, and stone. Flowers grow profusely out of pots along a criss-crossed mullioned window and fresh fruits and vegetables are collected on a wide butcher block counter beside a large, stainless steel double sink. A step stool is on the floor before the counter. The most remarkable thing is that when she said 'hearth', she meant it. There's a wide fireplace at the far end, complete with a spit and cauldron. All in all… this really does have the feel of an OLD English inn.
A place outside of time.


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Rhys Corrie

It's not until after the dishes have been washed and put away that Rhys Owens finally shows up at the Silver Oak. He's dressed casually — brown trousers, a grey cable-knit turtleneck, comfortable walking boots. When he enters, he sketches a polite bow to Winnea. "Mistress Winnea," he greets with a bit of formality. "My thanks for indulging the imposition. A gift for your hospitality." He proffers, at that moment, an old fashioned glass bottle — something that looks like it's from early part of the 20th century — filled with a white liquid.

"Oh, now, aren't you a dear boy?" Winnea says, bustling over to the sorcerer and taking the bottle from him. She holds it up to the light of the fire and smiles with pleasure at it. Then, briskly, she sets it down on the counter and turns to the cooling racks. "Here you go," she says lightly, then, deftly pulling half a dozen cookies and putting them on a plate. "Sit yourself down at the table there and have some cookies. Tea'll be along in a trice."


Corrie has had time to wash up, and even managed to fire off a quick email to her sister letting her know that she was nipping off for a day or two, and she'd call when she was back in the city, and could she please go to the flat and water the plants, thank you.

Dinner was probably as surreal as tea and cookies were upon arrival. Followed by a discussion as to the fact that no, Corrie would most certainly not be helping with the dishes, she was a guest. Which really left her with nothing to do while she continued to wait for Rhys.

Mostly, she's been spending the time reading something on her cellular, trying to suss it out. A spell that she scanned in before heading to the Undercity earlier. Not that it'll do her much good at this point, but if she can just translate a few more words she may be able to get it.

At first, she doesn't realize that Rhys has actually arrived. The voice goes unrecognized. When Winnea tells him to seat himself at the table, she glances up. There's no smile upon her face, but she looks quite relieved that he's actually here.

"Trouble with the family?"


"Thank you," Rhys says to his hostess, taking a seat at the table.

He glances over to Corrie, as he settles, lips drawn into a tight line, eyes direct. "Mm," is the brief response. "Not as much as you might think. I was more concerned that you were in the company of the Vampire, though my brother is under the impression that you were in little danger from it. Indeed. I think the word he used for the pair of you was… friendly."


"Your brother…" Corrie makes a face of disgust, and sets her phone atop the table. "… was too busy insinuating that I was prostituting myself to said vampire."


"Though I really don't think Aidan meant to harm me, considering he got me out of the Undercity and away from your brother before either of us actually did harm to one another." That's putting it mildly perhaps. "No, wait. I was arguing with him, and then we were talking on the bench when Gideon showed up. Inadvertently it was Gideon who gave Aidan my real identity, which is why he now knows about the alias I was using."


Rhys doesn't bother to clarify that he had told Gideon about her appropriation of his name. Thus, the eldest of the legitmate Reese scions was well aware of her deception when they met. Why complicate matters?

"Yes," he says dryly, instead. "About that: My brother's insult of you was unfortunate, but you cannot tell me it was unexpected. What were you thinking, striking out at him — and with sorcery, no less? How is that in any way conducive to avoiding my brethren?"


"I was thinking that it would take him by surprise and give me enough time to get out of there before I really lost my temper," Corrie replies easily enough. "Though I will give you that it was probably not the most intelligent thing to do, especially considering the location." In the corridor that links the 'witch' and 'sorcery' section together.

"And I had, for some reason, the need to be able to make my own decision on the matter." Beat. "To be honest, Rhys, I'm not exactly sorry that I did it, though I apologize for putting you into this mess. I really should be cleaning it up on my own. The only reason I contacted you was because I felt it better that you hear it from me first." Another beat. "Plus Aidan was present and I promised to contact you if I ran into him again."


Winnea bustles over, quite unobtrusively, laying out full cups of tea for the pair of them and ensuring the cookie plate is full. She gives Rhys a smile as he politely murmurs thanks for the tea.

The sorcerer picks up the cup and takes several moments to sip it. It allows him not to lose his temper and to maintain at least the show of patience.

"Corrie," he says after a long moment, "I didn't send the Ghost down after you to save you from my brother. I sent her to ensure you were safe from the Vampire. However he may have provoked you, you fired first on Gideon. I can't protect you from him, if you're going to do that. It's a matter of sticks, stones, and name-calling, yeah? But, I thought you weren't going to have anything more to do with the Vampire."


"Thank you," Corrie murmurs to Winnea, absentmindedly reaching for a cookie. They are really good and pulling one apart as she eats it will have a calming effect. After all, she did promise the woman that she wouldn't lose her temper.

"I know. I'll send an apology to Gideon simply to help alleviate that situation." Not that she wants to apologize, and not that she's sorry for doing it, but because it technically puts Rhys in a difficult spot and she'd really rather keep him in it if she can help the matter.

"I wasn't. I was trying to get past him to meet a contact after he knocked me into a puddle." Popping a piece of cookie into her mouth she glances at the sorcerer and sighs. "I've no idea why we were chatting on the bench, except that I think we're friendly." Beat. "Not the way your brother insinuated, but cordial." Beat. "Aren't we?"


Rhys leans back now, letting out a slow breath. He takes up one of the cookies and bites into it. There's a moment of surprise as he discovers just how good they really are, brows rising and eyes opening some. It's hard, really, to lose one's temper when one's mouth is full of melty sweet goodness like that.

So, he savours the treat for a moment before washing it away with another swallow of tea.

"Why don't you tell me, from the beginning, exactly what happened to you in Undercity."


Another broken piece of cookie is bitten into, and she closes her eyes. Not to ignore him or avoid eye-contact, but rather to try and recall in detail everything that's happened this evening. It's been a really long night already.

"I went to the Undercity to try and procure a charm. Several of them, in fact. An attempt to fix some of the issues." When she finishes fiddling with the cookie, she opens her eyes and searches out the tea. Finding it, she wraps her hands around the cup and sighs. "I ran into Aidan, quite literally, wound up in a puddle, attempted to get around him. When that didn't work, I asked him to move." Beat. After sipping the tea, she continues. "Which he did. Only toward me. Wherein he decided it was time for a chat."

Slowly she glances over at Rhys. "No. To get 'reacquainted'. I refused, he insisted. Then we continued to argue until he was suddenly kneeling in front of me. Suddenly I wasn't as antagonistic, I think. Then Gideon arrived, and was actually quite cordial as well, until he decided I was prostituting myself to Aidan, and you know the rest."

Doesn't he? Except what happened after she was carried off from Gideon.

"Oh, no. Aidan kissed me but I told him that I wasn't going for that and could he kindly just see me out of the Undercity."



Rhys regards Corrie for a long moment. She's been glamoured; he's sure of it. Her attitude simply doesn't flip from hostile to friendly that quickly. He should know. The Vampire has her in thrall. A short sigh. Brilliant.

"Oh, yes," he says dryly, now. "Very kind of him. Does he know your true identity, now, then?"


"Thanks to your brother, he does. So at least on that point, it means that your mother isn't likely to come to any harm from him." Corrie looks away, then finishes up the remainder of the cookie before glancing at her phone.

"I sent Jean an email telling her to be careful, and that I was away for a day or two." Since she really wasn't sure how long she'd be sequestered here.


Rhys is comparing stories, mentally, between Corrie and Gideon. Really, they do more-or-less check out… glamouring aside, though Gideon had suspected that. The last thing either of them want, though, is a row between the Dynasty and the Vampires.

A tight smile touches his lips. "It's a good plan, laying low for a few days. Spend the weekend here. Call in sick on Monday. By Tuesday, things should have more-or-less settled down."

It being the late hours on Wednesday, now, by Tuesday, he'll have had time to make them settle down. One way or another.

That's all that really matters.

"Can you handle that?"


"Randall won't like it all that much, but he'll get over it provided that I can still do a small amount of work from here." Via the cell phone at any rate.

Corrie takes a deep breath, and nods. "I can handle it. A weekend away will likely do me some good." Though it won't get her the items she was in search of. "Provided that you let your brother know that what I did was my doing, and not that of my family. Otherwise, considering all I've put you through if all you need me to do is stay here at this wonderful B&B I should be fine. I may gain a few pounds, because Winnea is superb in the kitchen, but I doubt I'll actually be worse for the wear…"

It's not until she's sussed that all out verbally that it occurs to her that there's something not being said.

"Something else happened to me down there, didn't it? Something that I can't recall?"


Rhys barks a brief laugh, now. "You tell me," he counters. She's a smart girl. She'll either put two-and-two together, or she won't. And he'd like to see just how heavy the vampire's glamour really is.

Winnea hovers nearby, mixing up a fresh batch of cookies as she listens to the exchange. She does, however, glance briefly back to the pair, a faintly indulgent and mildly curious expression on her features.


He's laughing. Normally that might put Corrie on edge, but the kitchen reminds her so much of home that she's having a difficult time not relaxing and keeping calm.

"He, that is, Aidan, did something to me." If it had been Gideon, there's no way Rhys would have asked her to tell him. He'd already know for certain and wouldn't dare tell her, she's sure.

Replaying the scenario in her mind again, she curses mildly under her breath. "He messed with my mind again. The entire reason I went down there in the first place was to get charms to prevent that."

The realization makes her angry, but not as angry as she might otherwise have been. Considering he did ensure she didn't stay put and continue casting spells at Gideon and exacerbate the issue.


"Vampires do that," Rhys says, downing the last of his tea, now. "With startling regularity, actually."

He pinches the bridge of his nose, debating just how to handle this. Leaning back in his chair, he gives a wry smile. "Just… stay here a few days. We'll figure it out, alright? Will you do that?"


"I've not had much opportunity to run into vampires." What little information Corrie has seen on them has been just that — little. Someone really didn't want the Kavanaugh Coven knowing too much about them, or their ancestors interactions with them.

"Of course. But promise me, Rhys, that you won't go putting yourself into danger on my behalf. I didn't call so you could hide me away so much as so you'd be kept abreast as to what was going on."


"Trust me," Rhys assures her. "I'll be fine. I'll be extremely careful." There's no word of a lie, there, certainly. Not now that he knows what he's dealing with.

A beat. A wry smile. "Are the rest of your sisters like you? As prone to getting into trouble?"


The funny thing is that she does trust him. Most witches wouldn't bother trusting a sorcerer, but then most sorcerers wouldn't be so concerned about her safety (for whatever reason).

"Only Jean." Corrie laughs softly. "I doubt you'd believe it but I'm not generally prone into getting into trouble. I'm usually the one fishing her out of it."


"Thank you, for all of this. I will find someway to repay you eventually." She knows she owes him for all of this.


"Mm." Rhys muses softly, giving a dry chuckle. Your mother must be so proud. He doesn't voice that thought aloud, however. Instead, he says, "Don't worry. By the time Tuesday rolls around, this will be nothing but an unexpected trip to the spa for you."

He rises now. "Thank you, Winnea," he says, turning to the nut-brown proprietress, "for all your hospitality and discretion. You are, as always, the finest of hostesses. I know you will take excellent care of Miss Kavanaugh, here."

"For as long as she chooses to stay," Winnea agrees amiably, jewel-like eyes sparkling some. "Always a pleasure to see you, Rhys-bucco. Do give my regards to your mother, won't you?"

"You know I will," Rhys smiles.

He glances to Corrie. "I should go."


Oh, explaining this to Prudence? Is going to have to be done with a great deal of distance between them. Otherwise there will be a great deal of shrill mothering going on and an even greater deal of wincing and feeling like a chastised teenager on the part of Corrie.

With any luck, she'll not have to explain a thing.

"Of course," she says to Rhys as he rises to go. She gets up as well, though only to see him to the door. "You'll let me know what's going on? What the verdict is?" Beat. "I'll just be trying to research a way to clear up this mess in my mind and prevent it from happening again. It's apparent that I won't be entirely able to avoid Aidan, but if I can protect myself I'll at least have the upper hand."

A smile falls upon her lips, almost a tad shy. "Thank you again, for everything."


Rhys nods to Corrie. "You're welcome." A beat. "Try to get some sleep, hmm? Breakfast in this place has a remarkable way of washing the cares of yesterday away." He glances a moment to Winnea, who merely smiles at them both.

With that, he gives another brief nod and takes his leave.

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