TITLE: The Rain Crow
GENRE: Adult - Historical
Lorena is returning with her teacher Imogene, who has fallen and sprained her ankle, to Virginia from her visit to Baltimore. A unit of Union Zouaves have stopped the carriage to search it for contraband.
"Is all this really necessary?" the captain asked when the third row of drawers was opened.
"Not if you prefer women who care nothing of their appearance. There's a reason southern men don't stray."
"Because they fear for their damned lives mostly."
"Language." I continued to fan myself, watching the soldiers grow more agitated the deeper they dug.
"Miss?" I turned to see Lieutenant Cormac. "We can't get Miss Boudreaux's boot off. Our button hooks are too large. She has seventeen buttons and refuses to let the doctor cut the boot off!"
"Of course she does! It's a Vermache boot known for their delicate buttons. If the captain would allow me, I could fetch it for you. If it's still where it was though heaven knows I seem to have a summer storm blowing through everything from caplet to corset."
"I ain't touched no corsets, ma'am," said one of the poor conscripted soldiers.
"The day is young." I pulled a button hook from the top vanity drawer of Imogene's trunk. "There you go, sir. Is there anything else she requires?"
"Well, she is quite upset and in pain. Perhaps you can come comfort her?"
"Tell her I will come as soon as we've been thoroughly searched. Do not tell her your comrades are rifling her unmentionables."
"Oh dear God, no, ma'am. I would never in life tell her that. Trust me."
"Ma'am! I'm not rifling no unmentionables! I ain't even got a gun near 'em."