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No Rest for the Wicked

Archivist note: This post is from an older recovered archive.

==No Rest for the Wicked==

((Posted by Phaedra Wickentower on July 5, 2010))

If Phaedra had been a different sort of person, she would have gaped at the scene which met her in the bakery with an open mouth, completely astonished.

Phaedra was not, of course, trained that way.

Instead, her lips compressed into a thin line as she surveyed the extent of the damage, letting the rage build slowly as she took in each slight. Flour was strewn everywhere, the dough she had left out to rise while she was dancing appeared to have been stepped through and squished with malice. Above her thick balls of dough were slowly melting down into stalagtights from the ceiling. There were footprints of dough up across the bread-ovens and then down the floor to the standing pie-oven. Even inside the pie-oven flour had been tramped, floured hand-prints attested to where the door had been open and shut. Someone had made a design of their hands along the bricks of the bread-ovens, painted the counters with the insides of one of the pies and destroyed those breads which had remained from the afternoon’s bake.

Beside her, Lo shifted nervously, “What should I do mother?”

“Fetch buckets, soap and cloths and the broom.” Phaedra snapped, “We need to clean it, you foolish girl.”

Phaedra cleaned her worktable first and began to combine the ingredients for pie crusts, muffins and flat breads, there wouldn’t be enough time to let proper bread rise and be ready to go in the oven now. Lo industriously swept and scrubbed and tidied until nearly all the damage had been repaired, then joined her mother as she worked. The two hauling out pans and setting them out to cool before knocking them free and arranging them in the front of the bakery. Phaedra herself borrowed a ladder and climbed up it to scrape loose the dough from the ceiling, dropping it down into a bucket Lo held.

When dawn broke and the first customers began to file in, clearly disappointed at the selection offered that day, Phaedra reluctantly left Lo in charge and made the long walk across town to Mr. Underby’s residence.

Mr. Underby was perched before a window, seemingly in a deep state of meditation.

“Yoyo, wake-up.” She snapped, “I need something.”

He stared at her a little blurrily, “What could you possibly need at this hour?”

“I need a silver coin and a straight-razor,” She said with a cold smile, “I’ve a gift I need to give someone.”

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