“Oh! Oh, goodness, you startled me!” the young lady exclaimed. “I’m sorry, sir. I was just checking to make sure everything was ready for your arrival. It seems the cabinets haven’t been stocked yet, so I’ll be sure to have someone bring supplies right away.”
She started to head for the door but Theis called out to her, stopping her. “So you work here?”
“Yes sir,” she replied brightly. “Inspecting apartments before guests arrive, making sure everything is in order.”
“And you are a student here as well?” He gestured to a satchel sitting just inside the bedroom door. “I’d hate for you to misplace your studies because I’d startled you.”
Evelyn blushed. “Oh, thank you, sir. I would have been tearing the house apart trying to find this if I’d left it here.”
Though she’d likely intended her words to lead him to believe that she had a home, Theis couldn’t help but think about the vid of what she did with the garden wall and her ability to literally tear a house apart. He smiled warmly and bowed his head slightly. “I’m glad I could save you the trouble, Miss…?”
“Evy,” she replied with a chipper smile. “Folks call me Evy.”
Theis bowed his head again. “A pleasure to meet you, Miss Evy. I’m Theis.”
She gasped at the introduction and her eyes shone with excitement. “That’s why you look familiar! You’re Theis of Minos! Ohmygoodnessitissuchanhonortomeetyou!” She clapped her hands delightedly. “I read your essay about ancient siege engines. Your trebuchet design worked great!”
Theis blinked at the tumble of words, then did a double take. “You made my trebuchet?”
“Sure did! It worked like a charm, too!” she beamed. “I’d challenged my brothers to see who could throw a parijam nut the furthest. I got grounded for breaking the neighbor’s window and for hacking my brother’s academy account to read the essay, but it was so worth it. Plus I had a sweet trebuchet!”
Theis laughed. “I wrote that nearly 8 years ago. I didn’t know it still remained on the Academy archives.”
“Oh no – this was 7 years ago!” Evelyn grinned broadly.
Theis shook his head slightly, still laughing. “While I never imagined it would be used in such a way, I am glad to hear my work has proven beneficial to someone.”
Evelyn picked up the satchel. “I should let you get settled. I’ll make sure someone stocks your supplies. It really was wonderful to meet you, sir.”
“Call me Theis,” he replied warmly. “You know, I’m staying here while holding a series of lectures. First one is next week if you care to attend.”
Her eyes lit up. “It sounds wonderful!” She made her way to the door.
“Then I look forward to seeing you again, Miss Evy.” Theis walked with her to the door. They exchanged cordial goodbyes and he closed the door behind her. He shook his head in wonder, chuckling, as he pulled his tablet and a comms earbud from his valise. He tapped in the command to connect him to the Dawn’s Light comms and found Everett waiting for him.
“So,” Rett sounded amused. “Sounds like first contact went well.”