(Delilah’s influence, Their first show, Steak on display, and A solution for a problem)
Iris managed to spot the fabled Doctor Delilah Moreau in just as many seconds as Colonel Walter did. And instantly felt small, common, and invisible. Any woman standing beside Delilah Moreau would instantly look like a scarecrow.
Even she fell a little in love with her. She knew she was starstruck with instant infatuation. Iris made herself examine the woman beyond her outward appearance. And saw a great deal more than anyone else had bothered to see.
Delilah and the lady by her side were just like the maids Chastity and Prudence, who loved each other as if they were already married. They spent their days in each other's company and their nights making love. And gave Iris quite an education thanks to the thin walls of their cellar dorms.
Delilah was also dying. Fatally ill with some form of consumption. She was wrestling against time. Fighting off death for one more day.
Poor Colonel Walter will break when he finds out...
"A household maid, Miss Iris Tonia, has proven to have something of a knack for assisting with their learning processes."
Iris stepped forwards and gave the audience a perfunctory curtsey. The few men in the room looked her over like she was once again one of Admiral Walter's prime steaks. What was new was that many of the women present had that same speculative gleam in their eyes.
Very many of the women, indeed.
Iris focused intently on her job, acting as emotional support for The Spine. Poor dear didn't like being apart from his copper sibling for very long. And Rabbit did love playing to an audience. Today would doubtless include Rabbit's attempts at flirting with several ladies in the front row. The only thing stopping him from flirting with every girl in the room was the simple fact that he was still uncomfortable with stairs.
Rabbit at least behaved himself long enough for Colonel Walter to display the Blue Matter power core. But he did refer to Colonel Walter as 'Pappy' at least once. And he flirted outrageously with every woman in the front row as he and The Spine played one of the more popular songs of the music halls and phonographs.
The Spine relaxed a little, as they played. He was more confident and less baking hot when he had something to occupy his mind and hands. Could it be that his innate nervous disposition was the source of his troubles instead of a mechanical error?
Iris would have to find an appropriate experiment. Something she was sure he could handle. The poor baby was ill-equipped to deal with failure. And something that would help train up his fine motor control.
She began to get a very secret smile. Iris knew just the thing.