Another chapter and more after this to repay for me forgetting this story.
Still feel bad even if no one reads this.
I don't own Alice In Wonderland
9 Beginning a Journey
Tarrant woke to the brightness of the sun glowing through the pale green curtains. He sat up and smelled the sweet scents of food and drink down stairs. His stomach rumbled and he stood to make his way out of the room.
Not before taking his hat. He stopped short outside the door when he passed a mirror on the wall in the hall. He fixed his coat and straightened his hat to make himself more presentable.
He found his way to the kitchen and saw Retta hovering over a counter full of food. She hummed to herself merrily while stirring a spoon in a pan.
She wore a dress much like the one she wore yesterday. Her skirt went out wide yet did not reach her knees, strips covering her legs. Hatter swallowed uncomfortably at his note of that and looked back up. (1) She wore a brown waist coat rather than a corset and her skirts were of bright yellows, oranges, and blues. A ribbon of black with splashes of color formed a bow at the top of her bosom. Her hat was missing but bows and odd little trinkets pinned her long hair in odd ways atop her head.
The window behind her shined with the light of the morning and her marble skin seemed to resemble that of his White Queen's. She reached a stained-with-color finger into the cup that she was currently stirring and lifted it to her pink lips. She smiled and when her eyes popped open they were of blue.
"Breakfast is almost ready. You slept in a bit, but I let you sleep for you need your rest for our little trip. I spent the morning tending to the garden, but then decided we need a good meal before we set off. Are you hungry?"
She had gone on without bothering to wait for his reply. When she asked him the question it took him a moment to realize that she paused. "Sounds lovely."
She sat him down and placed a breakfast before him, complete with toast. He ate but it wasn't long before she placed something in front of him that nearly sent him into hysterics.
"Tea!" He cheered as he hurriedly picked up the drink. "I thought you didn't have it!"
"While in the garden, I came across McTurnin. I asked him what is common in Underland and he told me tea. Tea does exist here yet it is not commonly drunk, mostly everyone drinks coffee. Only the King has tea, I asked to borrow some to surprise you."
Hatter looked up at her and was so happy to taste the sweetness of tea again that he felt like hugging her. Though he knew that to be immensely improper, it is what he wished for in that moment of utter joy.
She went around the table and sat in her chair, her own cup in her hand. As she took a sip he saw the darker liquid, she was still drinking coffee. That didn't much bother him, he had tea. That was all he cared about at that moment.
"I guess you like the surprise?" She beamed and he nodded enthusiastically.
"It is my favorite tea, too!" He exclaimed and her eyes widened with her lips. She reminded him of Chessur with her wide grin and blue eyes.
"Really? I just took a guess!" He finished off the tea and stared down at the empty cup, oh how he wished to shout that they needed to move down in their seats. But she caught on and left the room only to return with more tea for him. "You know the walk to the Blue Castle is two days long."
"Is it?" Tarrant asked as he devoured his meal. She giggled at his eagerness, apparently she made good food.
"Yes, we would need to stop for a night's rest before we make our arrival there." Hatter looked up at her as he took a sip of his tea. She chewed her lip before she looked up from the table. "My family's home is just in the middle of the Blue and Black Castles. If we leave soon we will make it there by nightfall."
Hatter placed the cup down. "Retta, if you want to stay with your family for a night before we go to the Blue Castle, I'm completely fine with that." She brightened. "I don't see why you simply didn't tell me so."
"I thought you wanted to be home as soon as possible. If we were to not stop and rest we could make it to Azurial by the late morning."
"I do wish to be home, for I am sure my friends and Queen are all wondering where I am. But I would not pressure it, Alice didn't. Or at least she didn't seem to." There was a beat of silence and Retta was about to say something else when a trumpet was sounded. She put down her cup and went to the large window and peered out.
"It's the King." She murmured and stepped out the side door that was in the far corner of the kitchen, which he hadn't noticed. He followed her without delay and stepped out into the beauty of the morning. The sky was a wonderful array of colors and the garden bloomed with wondrous flowers of colors and shades.
He gasped in awe for a moment and when he looked to Retta, to see if she saw the same beauty that he did, but when he did he noticed she was watching him with a knowing smile. Like she was watching for him to do just that.
"Tanara!" The King boomed with a grin.
"How are you this morning your majesty?" Retta curtsied and stepped off the porch and onto the grass where the King along with the black rabbit and a few soldiers were all waiting.
"It is a lovely day to visit the Tredsom garden." Retta smiled and the King waved his arm to the side. "Will you please speak with me a moment, alone?"
"Of course, your majesty." She turned to make sure Tarrant was alright before walking off with the King.
Hatter watched them speak; not knowing what was being spoken about. The birds chirped in the morning sky and Hatter found it odd that the soldiers were all clad in black. Black was normally associated with the Red Queen, as blue is with the White Queen. Yet it is opposite here.
"I'm fine, Anarim. (2) Trust me!" Retta pressed, by her hand gestures Hatter saw she was frustrated. The King was calm and serene, much like the White Queen, as he explained something to her. They seemed to come to a conclusion and the King and Retta made their way back. Retta stepped back onto the porch to stand by Tarrant. She waited calmly until the King left and she entered the house again.
She was mumbling nonsense to herself; mostly Tarrant couldn't hear a word of it. But she marched upstairs and Hatter felt obligated to follow her. He stood outside her doorway as she slammed a small bag onto her bed and stuffed a few objects inside.
"Retta…?" Hatter whispered and she halted all together. She looked at him, and he saw she was high on her nerves. The light pink in her eyes proved that she was slightly flustered. "If this is about you taking me to the Blue King I—"
"Yes, Tarrant." Hatter paused, for he had never handled a woman who was not blood related in such a tempered state. Much less a woman who speaks in mirrors. (3) "Before we leave, which must be very soon, there is one thing I must tell you."
"Go on then." He urged and she sighed. She moved around her bed and stood before him.
"I…" She made several attempts at starting her tale. But finally she continued on. "A few years ago, when the war began, I was happy as the new seamstress to the Black King. We were celebrating a wedding, my brother's in fact. Everyone was there, even the King, but no one had expected the Blue King to arrive."As she spoke Tarrant's eyes darkened instantly to every word that left her lips. It was so eerily similar to his life, his pain. But then it took a sudden change. "No one was killed, thank god. But some were injured. Only one hostage was taken." She spoke the facts in a rush and her long lashes blinked. "Me."
"What?" Hatter breathed, confused for a moment.
"I was kidnapped by the Blue King. Going back there makes me feel…on edge."
"I wouldn't have you take me then—"
"Stop, Tarrant, please." She seemed to be begging him now. "Anarim only wants me to lead you because I know the Castle very well; I am also the leader to the southern half of the rebellion. Not to mention that I'm the only one to get in and out of the Castle alive and unharmed. Anarim was simply worried and tried to talk me out of it. I refused, I made you a promise and I am going to keep it. I will get you home, Hatter."
"You talk much too much." He smiled at her shocked expression. "I understand what you mean. I see that you are worried about going back, but you feel obligated." He took a step forward. "If you would rather me go alone, I will. I do not want you to help me if it causes you any sort of discomfort."
"I'll go." She shook her head no to reinforce her statement. She took her bag and stepped past him, he watched her skip down the hallway. "The faster we get there the faster we leave!"
Yeah, anyone have any questions? If so, please ask, I really want to know.
Other than that…Explinations!
(1): This probably doesn't need to be explained but I'm putting this for anyone who needs to ask but doesn't want to. In the era Alice In Wonderland takes place women are forbidden to show too much skin. Ankles mostly. (Not to get off topic but it did rather bother me that Alice didn't take that into account when she Futterwackeden at the end of the movie). But in our world woman are not allowed to show their ankles, they must always be covered by a skirt. Though, the rules are different in Underland and Topland; it is still rather…"forward". So Hatter naturally blushed when he noticed she is wearing tights and her skirt is short enough to show her knee and down.
(2): Anarim is the Black King's name. Only close friends use this name for him, because it is deeply informal. But Anarim is actually mirrored from Mirana, which you all know is the White Queen's name.
(3): Here, I figured that Hatter doesn't have THAT much experience with women. Now before the pervs say something, I mean he hasn't had much experience with angry women. Sure he might have seen his mother or possible sisters angry. And he certainly has seen the Red Queen angry. But Retta is virtually a stranger to him and she is not a close friend or family. Plus, she talks backwards to his language. Thus, I figured he would have been VERY confused and taken aback when Retta got angry.
Those were long…whoa.