Meanwhile, Georges, Emile’s companion in roguishness and one time servant, is disporting himself – as usual in his time off from his warlord existence – in female company when he hears the news about Monsieur Gilles’ romantic misadventures from one of his lieutenants.
He’s eating onion soup, and a very voluptuous woman with Titian colouring is feeding him croutans. Another girl was with them, earlier, but having taken too much wine, she has retired to a chair in the corner to doze and giggle.
Georges finds this bandit’s lifestyle rather more to his taste than his life as servant in the Dubois family chateau in Provence; true, he worked for Emile – as democratic and easy going a master as he would be likely to find – but he was only a servant, reliant on his devastating profile, flashing dark eyes, curling dark hair and muscles to attract the women.
He knows that it is rumoured of him that he has bedded half the married and unmarried women in his area; of course, he hasn’t; but he swells with pride when he hears such stories.
Georges’ lieutenant is sweaty – possibly with enthusiasm for a new project – but more likely because it’s warm spring weather and he has no access to a bath, and he likes to tie his head up in a scarf after the manner of a pirate, a style of headress that Georges finds ridiculous in a landsman.
“Southern, fun and games over with Gilles Long Legs’ lot; seems he was much taken with some little blonde bourgoise he took to one of them parties that that Marcel Sly Boots keeps having, and she’s vanished.”
Georges’ eyebrows go up and he puts down his spoon. Something flickers in the depths of his eyes, perhaps, but his underling doesn’t see it and Georges returns his eyes to the girl sitting across from him, who has undone several fastenings on her dress.
“If I was him, I’d’ve kept in with that Lola. She was some woman! That bosom, that rump…”
The girl jerks her chin in annoyance, and Georges says hastily, “Nearly as good as this beauty, here…Don’t tell me you interrupted us to tell me about some minx running off from Gilles?”
“No, but he was looking for her all night, sent others out looking too. I heard all about it from My Source. Maybe he’d pay well lot to find her again.”
Georges has pulled up the woman’s skirts under the table, and is exploring underneath; she reaches across too and his voice comes out constrained. “Do him a favour, then, and see if you can find the wench…”