"Maid" might be pushing it a bit...
The lights continued to get brighter and brighter forcing her to shield her eyes against the harsh blue white glare, until as suddenly as it had began the light vanished, leaving Cassandra standing alone in chilly woodland
Cass chewed her lip
"Huh, this is wierd..."
Wrapping her arms around her and frowning, she shivered, uncomfortably aware of her somewhat limited wardrobe, and fleetingly wished that she had grown up in Newcastle - the embarrassing stigma aside, at least she would have been used to cavorting around outside in just her underwear as a matter of course; although on a brighter note, Cass realised that she was at least dressed in ever so slightly more than just the low-slung corset that had seemed like such a good idea only moments ago, so things weren't all so bad.
She waited breathlessly for a moment, gently rubbing the goosebumps out of her arms and shuffling her stilettos amongst the dirt, twigs and leaves on the floor as she glanced about the woodland around her.
Minutes passed, and another flash of blue-white light to return her to the Blue Dwarf continued not to occur, so Cassandra sighed and did that impatient, somewhat irritated foot tapping thing that girls sometimes do, but this only made her feel slightly ridiculous given her current circumstances.
Nothing else continued to happen in abundance for a few more minutes, so Cass sighed and with a final glance around, stalked off into the undergrowth, startling a pheasant after only a few paces, which flew into the air clucking with indignant fury from a nearby shrub and made her scream like a girl with fright.
Wanly smiling at her skittishness, Cass steadied herself against a tree while her heart rate settled, and absent-mindedly patted herself down, looking for her cigs, only to realise with an anguished sub-conscious moan that her tabs were wherever the rest of the Blue Dwarf had got to; Today really wasn't shaping up to be one of her better days - perhaps it was something she had done in a previous life..?
Sometime later, after wandering the woodland for what seemed like hours, Cassandra was feeling pretty low: she was beginning to feel the first angry twinges of nicotine withdrawal, was freezing cold, wet, scratched and bloodied from her sojourn around the woodlands, and was just beginning to suspect to her chagrin that she may have been wandering in circles, when she stumbled out from the undergrowth onto a path in front of what could only be described as a small detail of heavily armed medieval guards
"Uh, Hi..." she began, trying to muster as much dignity as was possible in a grubby bikini and torn fishnets
"A SUCCUBUS!" one of the men shouted, followed by the sound of numerous swords being drawn
The men regarded her from behind a tight formation bristling with sharp metal
"She doesn't look all that so much like a succubus Serge", one said "Looks pretty lost and cold to me..."
"You can't be sure with succubusses" said another, "Her appearance may just be a glamour - she'll be all teeth and horns beneath all that dirt!"
"Aye" retorted another, "Succubusses are famous for that kind of thing"
"For smegs sake", Cass muttered, taking a slow step backwards
"Hold it right there!" barked a man who Cassandra took to be the sergeant "I don't want to see you move another inch, or we'll see you dead in short order!"
There were some general murmurings of agreement at this
"Are you guys some sort of live role-playing group?", Cass began "Because I really wouldn't want to get in the way; if you could just point me in the direction of civilised society, I'll be off and on my way..."
She took another step backwards
'Bugger this', Cassandra thought, turning heel and making a dash down the path
Cass was taller than most of the men, and unencumbered with chain mail and weaponry, whereas the pursuing troops weren't hindered by stilettos and a lack of decent under-wiring, so for a while at least, it was a pretty evenly matched contest. In the end though, the race was lost when a horse crashed through the undergrowth, rearing in front of Cassandra, its heavily armoured rider nearly skewering her with the wickedly sharp looking lance he was brandishing.
Cass twisted to avoid disembowelment, but her manoeuvre and momentum carried her forward, throwing her off-balance, resulting in her crashing painfully to the floor. She quickly rolled, spitting dirt, and pushed herself up onto all fours, ready spring up and run again, but stopped as she came face to face with the point of the riders lance wavering centimetres from her nose.
"What is the meaning of this?", snapped the rider at the troops who had now closed in and were fanning out around Cass
"Oh. Ah. Lord Gisbourne", the sergeant panted "We - ah. We were just attempting to apprehend this fleeing Succubus"
Cassandra still on all fours, looked up the length of the lances shaft, feeling utterly ridiculous, towards Gisbourne. An attractive enough man, she thought, with long dark hair and a cheeky cruel turn to his mouth - he certainly looked the part sat astride his huge charger!
"Huh", said Gisbourne, "She doesn't look much like a succubus to me"
"That's what I said", retorted one of the troops
"SILENCE", bellowed Gisbourne, before turning his attention back to Cassandra
"Pray madam. State your name and business and be quick about it"
Thinking quickly Cass mulled the possibilities over; either she was having a DMT flashback, or she had somehow managed to get dragged into a reality disjunction. In either case, since she was apparently in the middle-ages, and this was Sir Guy of Gisbourne, there really was only one possible answer:
"My name is Marian Fitzwalter", Cass replied. "I and my retinue were journeying south towards London from York when we were recently set upon by brigands in this area. I alone managed to escape with my life and, thank the lord, my virtue intact, but only after the Hood's men had had their vile sport with me: As you can see, they have stripped me of my kirtles and have painted my face such that I look like a common prostitute!"
Cassandra dropped her gaze from Gisbourne, letting her bottom lip quiver slightly at the imagined memory. This was never going to work in a million years
"An honour to make your acquaintance, my lady", replied Gisbourne, pulling his lance away. Evidently Gisbourne recognised the name.
"Only Robin the Hood would dare lift a hand against a noblewoman", he continued, "and for that I can only apologise on behalf of my witless troops who have thus far failed to apprehend the villain. But this doesn't explain your remaining strange attire...?"
"What a lady chooses to wear beneath her gown should really be no concern of yours Sir..." Cass teased with a smile
His eyes widened in surprise, and after that he was like putty in her hands. A warm cloak was quickly procured for her, with the promise of more suitable attire in the not too distant future, and in no time Cassandra found herself sat in front of Gisbourne astride his charger on the road to meet the Sheriff of Nottingham at his hunting lodge
Gisbourne, Cass found, was good, even charming company, and in spite of herself she found herself enjoying the ride; Even the distant impact of a six mile long starship and Gisbournes insistence that they ride directly to Castle Boobage (for heaven's sake) didn't entirely ruin the journey...