Trouble at the Ripped Bodice

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Trouble at the Ripped Bodice

Post by Myds6 on Fri Dec 30, 2016 6:00 am

((This is me introducing a new character, developing some others, and setting up some zany hijinx for the future. Sorry if it isn't action-packed at the moment.))

"I kinna take it anymore..." Niniane tried not to stare into the bartender's cleavage as she listened. This was made difficult by the size of Minna's breasts for her frame, the way she wore her uniform top pulled down, and Niniane's vantage point looking down on her. Still, it wouldn't do to be caught staring. Not when they were talking about something so urgent.

"Can't you get your family to help...your family in the Cupric Hills, right?" Minna slammed an ale on the counter and slid it down to a customer. "That's just it, ye dumb sod. I've been sendin' them money. The mines seem to have run dry, but the damned fools keep digging." "I guess I could ask for a raise for you," Niniane offered, trying to ignore the dwarf's rough tone with her. That was just her dwarven upbringing after all. Niniane knew she considered her a friend; Minna almost never spoke of her own problems. The fact that she would complain to her meant she trusted her. "It's not just me needs a raise. Ruby can't feed her daughter on these wages. And I don't know how Belle is managin to feed herself, although it looks like she's doin a might good job of it. Sure, you and Kalka have that sweet arena gig goin'--" "I'm not sure I'd call it sweet. Look, I'm not sure I can ask for a raise for everybody. It won't turn out good."

"Pish-posh," Mina said, sliding a tankard of cider down the bar. "You can ask. It's that you won't. The girls here appreciate everything you do for us, it's just that you're a little too tight with the powers that be. That tight-fisted, hairy-footed little sneak is probably spying on us right now." "I think I hear a customer calling me..." "That's right...run away when I'm talkin'...you fight all manner of ruffian for us but you won't fight the robber baron wot pays us."

Niniane was truly conflicted. She had acted from teh time of her arrival in Enferia as a sort of big-sister to the girls of the bodice. But she also knew Brandywine. She understood that her business-sense overrode any compassion she might feel. Some....most, would call it greed. But Niniane had protected the staff by knowing Brandy's limits. She knew what not to ask for, and she never incited her boss' wrath. Belle did sometimes, but not really on purpose. Suddenly, a real problem brought her back to reality. The kind of real problem she knew how to solve. One of the patrons, a burly lumberjack spending his coin in the city, had had a bit too much. He was standing in front of Natalie, the new bellydancer, making pig noises at her, and tossing sticky mead from his mug at her. Now, it looked like he was about to touch her.

As the hand reached out, Niniane quickened her step. Just as the patron managed to grab a handful of flesh just above the skirt, Niniane's hand sized his wrist. She squeezed. The lumberjack looked confused, then pained, then afraid. Before he knew what had happened, Niniane was dragging him by the collar to the door, and finalized his exit with a firm push that sent him tumbling to the street. "What did I tell you about touching?" "Ummmm....don't do it?" "That's right!" "Can I come back in?" "You're done for the night. In fact, next time you come in here, ask for me, and I'll decide if you can stay. But you're going to apologize to her first. Now get lost!"

"Yes ma'am!" said the lumberjack, as he scurried off into the night. As a man of some size, scurrying was something to which he was unaccustomed. But he had just met the force of nature that kept order at the Bodice.

When Niniane came back inside, she noticed that Minna had a bit of an audience. That wasn't unusual, as she made the best drinks, and was quite the conversationalist with those who could understand her accent. What was unusual this time, was that her audience consisted of Natalie, Belle, and Ruby. Considering the conversation they had just had, Niniane was concerned.

"Yeah," said Ruby loudly, "We need at least 15 copper an hour!" "Or we won't work here anymore!" Minna chimed in. "That's what I'm afraid of," said Belle. "Oh, she won't be replacing us. I'm the best bartender in the realm, and you have your own....um...assets," Minna shot back. Niniane, nervous about what appeared to be a mutiny in progress, and concerned what Brandywine would do wandered over. "Get back to work, girls, we can talk later." "This is an urgent matter. Do you know what I have to feed my little Sally?" Ruby responded. "Thanks for taking care of that lumberjerk," Natalie added, hugging Niniane. "Seriously, gals...the customers are waiting, let's get them their drinks..."

In her back room, Brandywine was in a particularly foul mood. Her viewing orbs had been installed at great expense and difficulty. They were intended for collecting secrets and occasionally "buttering her muffin," as her mom called it when she had caught her as a teenager. Actually, she might have done more of that than collecting secrets. Some of the patrons were pretty attractive. But she was always furious when something interrupted her self-pleasure. She was more furious now than ever, because this interruption was bad for business. What's more, it involved her ingrate employees. These girls should be happy she deigned to pay them as much as she did. And some of them, like Belle, even made a decent amount in gratuity! How could they want more? Especially 15 copper an hour? The idea was unthinkable. And her 'muffin' dried up immediately when she heard what they were saying. She'd stop them in their tracks, and put an end to this. She put on her clothes and prepared to make a rare appearance in the tavern.

Meanwhile, Niniane was having minimal success getting the other girls back to work, and the customers were getting impatient.
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Re: Trouble at the Ripped Bodice

Post by splotch on Fri Dec 30, 2016 7:38 pm

(Glad the new bellydancer made it in!)

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Re: Trouble at the Ripped Bodice

Post by Myds6 on Sat Dec 31, 2016 3:35 pm

((Oh, yeah...I'm a huge fan of her huge assets...Lol...))
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Re: Trouble at the Ripped Bodice

Post by Myds6 on Mon Jan 02, 2017 4:08 am

"Look, Niniane. I love ya, but ya gotta be on our side on this one," Minna was saying. Buxom Belle was biting her lip nervously, looking back and forth between the two women. Natalie, the dancer, stood off to the side, but seemed to be nodding when Minna spoke. Ruby was shouting at Niniane in support of Minna's positions, but Niniane paid her little mind right now. She stared down into the dwarf's eyes.

"I respect your position, Minna, but there's no way Brandy will go for this. We might all be out of a job if you keep pushing for--" She was interrupted by a gruff voice from the crowd, "Give me a damn beer!"

"Look," she said, "they're about to get rough."

Brandywine snarled, "I'm about to get rough. No beer for anyone until I get a raise!" Someone from the crowd threw a metal tankard, that almost hit the dwarf in the head. "That's it...who threw that? I'll give ya such a good thrashin, you'll never disrespect a dwarf again!" With that, Minna started climbing over the bar, which was no mean feat for someone who was just barely tall enough to serve over it. Niniane placed herself to block her from making it over. "Stay outta my way! I'm gonna...I'll kill him!"

"Calm down," Niniane urged, your overly excited,"You don't actually want to hurt--" "Don't you tell ME what I want to do, first the short jokes and now they're throwin tankards. Next thing, they'll be tryin'a toss ME! And nobody tosses this dwarf!" She turned around, and picked up a sizeable, but nearly empty bottle of liquor. Niniane thought fast, and reached into the satchel at her side.

Before Minna could throw the bottle, she was blinded with a cream pie thrown by Niniane. The bottle crashed to the floor without hurting anyone. Minna wiped her eyes and screamed. She was now charging at Niniane. Realizing the clear danger the raging dwarf was, but not wanting to hurt her friend, she pulled out from the magic satchel another pie, hoping to blind her temporarily so she could restrain her. But the dwarf dove into a tackle suddenly, and the throw went amiss as she knocked Niniane to the ground, winded.

It was that moment that Brandywine appeared from the back room behind the bar. "What's this ab--" her sentence was cut short by a splat that covered her vision for a moment. Even before she was able to wipe off enough of the goo to open her eyes, she screamed, "NINIANE!"

What she saw as shse opened her eyes was one very angry and cream-faced Minna climbing off of a startled Niniane who was lying on the floor in a clumsy mess. The other employees backed away, and even the angry, thirsty customers took a few steps back, although they watched intently, some of the braver ones openly laughing at the pie-faced dwarf and halfling, most chuckling nervously at best.

Brandywine screamed. It wasn't a word. It was a primal scream of anger and disgust. "Tell me what this is about right now or--"

Minna was already on her feet and marching over to her boss, the only person in the room that she was taller than. "I'll tell you what this is about. It's about time you paid fair wages." Brandy spit off some of the excess pie, "EXCUSE ME?" "Some of us have families to support." "When did you have a baby," Brandywine snarked, "well, I guess you're so fat I didn't notice you were pregnant."

Minna's face reddened visibly through the cream that clung to it. "I didna' have a baby, and you know it! I pay for my family back home from this job. And I'm trying to make enough to save their mine!"

"Have you tried the arena?" Brandywine replied, with a degree of sarcasm, "Niniane here can give you some advice about that...and after your antics tonight, you might not have a choice." She gestured to a few of the city guards entering the tavern.

"I tried to stop her," Niniane said, weakly.

Minna leaned close to Brandywine, as if to emphasize the height difference between them, which, to human eyes, wasn't that much. "It's not just me....Ruby has a daughter...what about Belle? These are starvation wages." "Well, you wouldn't know it looking at most of you." *smack* Brandywine's eyes widened in shock as she felt her cheek turn red where the dwarf had slapped her. "You'd best watch it. I have a mind to fire you now."

"And I'll take my dwarven ale and cider recipes to your competitors." "I'm not worried about them," Brandywine replied, unable to hide the concern on her face. "If their customers want to drink dwarf piss, that's their concern." *smack* This time, Brandy didn't stand still for it. She swept Minna's leg, and tacklled her, sitting on top of her with her dagger drawn.

"That's quite enough of that," said the guardswoman. Brandy quickly sheathed her blade. "I wasn't going to hurt her. I just wanted to instill some respect for her employer," Brandywine explained.

"Is that so?" said the guardswoman, tall and imposing, with her reddish-brown hair shaved on one side, "I couldn't tell if you were going to hurt each other." She nodded to the guards under her command, and they produced shackles. "You can explain everything to the judge."

"No, you can't this is my establishment! I have every right to--" Brandywine and Minna were shackled, and led toward the door. "Take that one, too," said the captain, pointing at Niniane. Then, just before Brandywine was led through the door, the captain stopped her, "So, this is really your establishment?" "Damn right it is! You're making a career ending mistake! I have conncections you couldn't imagine!"

The captain, gestured to Belle, then said, "Looks like you're in charge. After you clsoe down, don't open the place until this is resolved, but for now..." she turned to the crowd, "DRINKS ON THE HOUSE for the rest of the night! Just make sure you're out of her at closing, we don't want to have to come back again tonight."

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Re: Trouble at the Ripped Bodice

Post by Myds6 on Sat Jan 07, 2017 8:46 pm

At the magistrate's office, an elderly woman in a robe and a white wig examined the prisoners brought before her.  "Oh, Niniane...you...again...What's this about?"

"Your honor, I am not--"  "Not YOU!  Captian, what's this about?"

"We found this one sitting on top of this one, holding a dagger.  As both of them seemed to have cream filling on their face, we hauled this one in as the usual suspect."

"I was trying to stop--"  "NINIANE!  I will not tell you again.  In my court, speak only when you are spoken to."

"You!" she said, pointing at Brandywine, "Your attire looks like someone of means.  Was this serving dwarf robbing you?"

Brandy looked at Minna, considering how she would play this.  "No, your honor.  I am the owner of the establishment where these two work."

"The Ripped Bodice!  I have cases in here almost every day that erupt in your den of inebriation, lust, and villainy!  You should be ashamed of yourself."

Brandywine blushed under the cream.  "Well, we were having an employment dispute...we exchanged words...then she assaulted me."

"I slapped 'er!" Minna shouted, in correction.  "She continued to assault me."  "I slapped 'er when she wouldn't stop yappin muleshit."

"Silence!  It's the halfling's turn to speak."  The guards holding Minna tightened their grip.

Brandy couldn't help but crack a grin at how she was playing this magistrate like a fiddle.  "I pulled my dagger to defend myself.  I had no intention of hurting her, just calming her down."  "That's crap!"

"OK, dwarf, speak your peace."

"This tightfisted hairfoot Halfling don'na pay us enough.  I said I wanted 15 copper an hour.  She told me to shove it.  Sure, I slapped her when she started getting rude.  Slapped her again when she didn'a stop.   She pulled her blade and tackled me.  I don'na care about that.  I just want proper wages.  For all of us."

"There were more of you involved in this dispute?"  "Yeah, Belle and Ruby had my back.  This traitor over here...just wanted us to shut up and not demand what we deserve."  Niniane looked hurt by the comment.

"OK, Niniane.  I've seen you her enough times to know you well.  These women have pie on their faces, that has to be your doing."

"Yes, your honor.  I was trying to calm them down.  I was trying to prevent the fight."

"Well, for better, or for worse, you got tied up in this.  And you'll have to suffer the consequences with the rest.  I think I've made my decision."

"Guards, go back and round up the other employees involved in this dispute.  Let them shut down for the night, and bring them here when they leave the establishment.  I'll speak to the group then, and we'll resolve this dispute the Enferian way."
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Re: Trouble at the Ripped Bodice

Post by Myds6 on Sat Jan 07, 2017 9:20 pm

An hour later, Brandy, Minna, and Niniane were brought to the courtroom from the holding cells. There they found Belle and Ruby were already waiting for them.

"Ah, the Ripped Bodice," the magistrate sighed. "What other reason would the guard wake me up at this hour to deal with a dispute?"

"It is the court's judgement that this behavior is merely a symptom of an underlying dispute. It is a dispute the court intends to see settled. Being that this is Enferia, and the court's friend, Niniane here knows where I'm going with this..." she paused, smiling.

"It is the court's decision that not only the disorderly behavior and assault, but the underlying employment dispute should be settled in Enferia's arena. Minna, you will be the leader of one team, and Brandywine, the leader of the other team. If Minna wins, all employees at the Ripped Bodice will make a minimum of 15 copper an hour. If Brandywine wins, wages are set, with no option to ask for a raise until two years from now. There will be no firing of employees in revenge for this action, no matter what the outcome, and, as usual, the forfeits that are customarily paid by losers and chosen by winners stands, as is the will of the queen."

"Who is on my team?" Brandywine objected. The magistrate grinned. "I don't know. Which of these women can you convince? It's up to you."

She then put her head down and scrawled on some official-looking documents. "Have these on Aloysius' desk by tomorrow morning. He needs to read the decision."

With that, the women were led back to the holding cells, but this time the one that also served as a sort of green-room for the arena. They would spend an interesting night there.
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