"How long have you known him?" He asked more gently, tying my last lace of the boots.
"Over half a year."
A blast of a car horn sent me three feet in the air. Tintin grabbed my arm to steady me.
"That must be Nestor. Let's go. M'a lady," he extended his arm.
"I'd be honored your grace."
When we arrived at Merlin Spike I felt a weight off my shoulder. The place was beautiful! Gardens surrounded the outer court yard. The old stone wall had gorgeous pink flowers, budding off of vines, adorned upon then. The trees looked like dances swaying in the wind.
The only thing out of place was the scruffy sea dog at the front door. He had messy black hair tucked under his Captains hat and a black beard to match. His blue shirt was still bright, even with the evident wearing of it. His eyes were small and his nose a bit large, but his expression was more on the kinder side.
"I'm going to warn you," Tintin whispered as we began to pull up the long drive. "Captain Haddox can be an odd fellow. He has mood swings due to his obsessive drinking and he isn't a fan of meeting new people. When I called him last night, though, he seamed okay with bringing you over."
"Wait...is he a drunk?! He has mood swings?!"
I whispered back.
"And you call that odd?"
"That's what I was thinking Madame." Stated Nestor from the front seat.
"Tintin, my boy! Glad to see ya. You've been gone a long time this time!" Exclaimed the Captain as we stepped out.
After a long hug with Tintin, he noticed me. "Glad to see you've finally got a girl. Good to meet ya lass! Archibald Haddox! Pleasure."
I smiled at his manors. "Rowen. No last name." I shook his hand.
"Why are you out here Captain?"Asked Tintin.
"Have an unwanted guest" he sighed.
"Who would-" I was cut off by the front door swinging open.
"Captain Bartock! Ah! A nice young lady. And Tintin, darling! How are you!" A larger woman with blond hair stepped from the mansion.
"Hello Madame Castafiore. It's a pleasure to see you again." Politely responded Tintin.
"Bartock?" I asked the Captain.
"She can never pronounce my name right. Yet, there she be, in love with me."
I giggled. "Sounds like bad poetry."
We gathered inside the living room and had a wonderful evening. As the stars began to glow, it was clear everyone was getting tired. I headed out to ask Nestor a favor. I found him in his study with a nice cup of tea.
"Excuse me. Beg my pardon, but could I ask a favor." I questioned from the door way.
"Why of course Madame."
"Rowen is fine. Um... Are there any clothes-particularly male- that I could have to wear? Madame Castafiore said she'd give me a dress but I doubt I could fit and I'm not much of a dress person."
"I'm certain I could find some. I don't blame you for not wanting a dress from the Madame, miss Rowen. Will you be needing shoes."
"No, but thank you. Tintin gave me some of his boots and socks. But I could use a new bandage for my leg."
Nestor nodded and walked me to a storage closet. He pulled out an old bag and a first aid kit.
"You didn't seam to mind being called his lady." He said.
I grabbed the items. "Pardon?"
"This morning. Master Haddox said he was glad Master Tintin finally had a girl."
I blushed in the dimming light.
"And you've already got his shoes." Nestor winked.
I chuckled in the darkening hallway. "Perhaps. But I've just met the fellow. Need to get used to him first. But I fell like a know him a bit."
" I love to read his work."
"Very nice, miss Rowen. Your room is on the second floor. Take a right at the top and go all the way to the end room on the right. All the bedrooms are along that hall. Just shout if you need anything." He walked back to his room.
"thank you! Good night Nestor!"