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 New Job, Ashley Butt
John Rein
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 10:32 PM
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John had worked at a stable in a middling area of the city for a few weeks before he was let go. His skill wasn't the problem. The stable just couldn't afford him anymore, and he was the newest hire so they let him go.

But the manager was kind enough to help him find a new job. He still worked in the stables, but now he worked in the stables of a private, very fancy mansion. At first he was reluctant because it was so fancy and it was nothing like what he was used to, but he saw the stables and realized they were still just stables. They were still full of horses and their shit, and hay and oats and tackle. The quality of tools and dressing was better, but the fundamentals behind taming and caring for the animals was the same as ever.

He stood next to a mild mannered mare, brushing her down for the evening.

What did you do today? he asked her.

She sighed. I pulled the carriage. All day! I took the lady shopping. She bought a lot of things.

John smiled. Rich people could afford to buy a lot of things. Which lady? The little one or the big one?

Both, actually! And not a bit of thanks.

Well, I'll give you an apple tonight.

The mare tossed her head in appreciation.

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Cassandra Holmwood
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 10:37 PM
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It was far too cold to go riding, her mother had said. It had only made her more determined to go.

Cassandra made her way out to the stables in a warm winter habit. It didn't reveal a lot of skin, but it accentuated her curves nicely, so it wasn't a complete loss. After spending all day tediously shopping, she figured she deserved a bit of fun. She realized it might be in the cards to visit Washington, much against her better judgment.

Well, sometimes she needed it. And it was easier getting it from him than doing the whole stupid dance with Owen or any of the other slobs she was trying to court. She couldn't afford rumors.

"You," she called out, to whomever was standing there. She barely even looked at him, too concerned with pulling her gloves on all the way. "Saddle one up. I'm going riding." She was in a good mood, and her pheromones reflected that, swirling calmly around. There was lust in there, yes, but it wasn't as rampant as it could have been.
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John Rein
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 10:51 PM
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The horse snorted when the young mistress appeared. John forgot her first name. Miss Holmwood was all he was expected to call her anyway. He didn't think he'd ever been formally introduced. As soon as she came in, though, John noticed her.

The mare shifted. Be careful! She's a little snake! Can't trust her! Hasn't mated in the stables for a while though.

John shot a confused look at the horse, then turned to the human girl. "Yes, Miss Holmwood. Which horse would you like to ride?"
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Cassandra Holmwood
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 10:54 PM
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She rolled her eyes. "I don't care. One that isn't crippled or ugly," she said, dismissively. "Side saddle."

One of the mares snorted at her, and she shot it a disinterested look.
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John Rein
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:01 PM
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He nodded. "Yes, ma'am."

Not me, please! the mild mare whinnied.

John pat her shoulder. No, you've done enough today. He wandered down the stalls, inspecting the horses one by one. None of them were all that eager to carry Miss Holmwood. They all shied away or pretended to be tired.

Come now, someone has to. He stopped at another mare, dun-colored and a bit older than the others. The name on the stall said "Milady." John had met many "Milady" horses in his day. How about you?

Milady sighed. Very well.

John saddled the horse with the girl's requested saddle and led her to Miss Holmwood. "Here you are, Miss. Take care on the roads. They're still slick."
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Cassandra Holmwood
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:02 PM
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She waited for him to help her up.
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John Rein
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:05 PM
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He stared at her, confused. Then he remembered she was a lady, and ladies required assistance. He cupped his hands for her to step on.
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Cassandra Holmwood
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:06 PM
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She stepped into his cupped hands. Of course, the slight brush of contact sent the pheromones swirling, but she barely noticed it these days. She thought about saying thank you, but decided against it. He was just the help.
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John Rein
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:10 PM
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John frowned. That was very weird. It wasn't an unfamiliar sensation, but it was certainly an unwelcomed one. This girl was his employer's daughter. He knew enough that trying anything with her would just cost him his job. And he was getting paid more here than the other one. Enough to afford that Espanol woman each week, even. Well, maybe every other week.

Thinking of the whore with the accent didn't help him any. He snorted and shook his head. "Anything else you need, Miss?"
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Cassandra Holmwood
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:11 PM
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She sent him a bemused frown when he snorted and shook his head. "No," she said, slowly. Then, against her better judgment: "What's wrong with you?"
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John Rein
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:13 PM
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He looked up at her, arms akimbo. "What do you mean?"
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Cassandra Holmwood
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:13 PM
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She raised an eyebrow. The pheromones kicked up, probably due to the undercurrent of irritation. Riling her up always made it slightly worse. "You're acting oddly."
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John Rein
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:14 PM
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He took a step back. Maybe she was some kind of snake.

"How so, Miss? Just doing what you told me to do."
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Cassandra Holmwood
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:15 PM
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She narrowed her eyes. The pheromones kicked up louder, stronger, but she shrugged. "Whatever, I just remembered that I don't really care," she said, with false brightness.
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John Rein
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:19 PM
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He frowned at her and took another step back. The mare beneath her fidgeted as well.

This girl is annoying, Milady said. I changed my mind.

John turned to the horse. What?

I don't want to take her riding. Milady stamped her hooves. Get her off.

Calm down, now. John looked at the girl. "Miss Holmwood, this horse isn't the best choice. I don't think any of them are up to carrying you this evening."
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Cassandra Holmwood
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:20 PM
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She stared at him. "Are you insane?"
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John Rein
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:20 PM
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John decided to ignore that, since it was a question better left unanswered. "I think it's for the best."
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Cassandra Holmwood
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:21 PM
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"I want to go riding. It's your job to bring the horses, and let me ride them." Her eyes narrowed. Irritation was starting to turn to anger, now -- and the passionate nature of that emotion did not help the circumstances. "Isn't that right?"
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John Rein
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:24 PM
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"It's my job to care for the horses," John replied. "And the one you're riding does not want to ride."

As if on cue, Milady snorted and stamped her feet again. She kicked out her back legs and hit the wall behind her.
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Cassandra Holmwood
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:25 PM
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Cassandra yelped, and tumbled out of the saddle entirely.
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John Rein
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:27 PM
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Since he'd been expecting that, John caught her and stumbled against the wall with her in his arms. He set her down and quickly went to calm the mare.

Relax! She's off! I don't think she'll try that again.

Milady snorted and tossed her head. I should think not! Sometimes she's so...so...something!

He sighed and turned to the girl. "Are you all right?"
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Cassandra Holmwood
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:28 PM
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She was furious.

She straightened, the look in her eyes murderous. "I'll turn you into glue," she hissed at the horse, stepping towards it with her fists clenched.
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John Rein
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:31 PM
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John scowled at Miss Holmwood and stepped between them. It was just as well, since the horse bucked again. This time she cracked the wall and whinnied loudly. Her cry only further unnerved the other horses and a chorus of high-pitched whinnies echoed through the stables.

"Miss Holmwood, please calm down," John snapped. "You'll only make it worse."
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Cassandra Holmwood
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:32 PM
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She glared at him. Her pheromones were going wild, now. "You presume to tell me what to do?"
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John Rein
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:32 PM
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He did his best to intimidate, towering over her, and growling deep in his throat. "It's for your own good!"
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Cassandra Holmwood
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:34 PM
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"Is that so?" She was not easily intimidated, as he was about to find out. She stepped towards him, just daring him to do something stupid with her. "Please, explain," she suggested, in a dangerous tone.
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John Rein
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:35 PM
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He pointed at the agitated horse. Milady was still shying away from them, whinnying and stamping her hooves. "You get on that horse when it's like that and you'll likely find yourself with a cracked skull. She doesn't want you riding her!"
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Cassandra Holmwood
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:36 PM
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"Who cares what the horse wants?" she asked, incredulously. Her pheromones were too active, she realized. Perhaps she needed to visit Washington that day. Like, within the hour. It was a miracle that the man in front of her wasn't feeling the effects.
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John Rein
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:38 PM
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"I care!" John shouted in her face. He grabbed her by the shoulders and shoved her against the wall before he thought better of it.
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Cassandra Holmwood
 Posted: Apr 12 2012, 11:39 PM
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Her jaw dropped. Her pheromones spiked -- badly. She told herself that she refused to be turned on by this, but that seldom did any good. "How dare you put your hands on me!"
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