The first time Laurel Hollis sees Lady Karnstein , she thinks she is the most beautiful woman in the world. Which , as Lafontaine tells her , isn’t saying much , considering the fact that she has never been out of the small village in Styria where they live . Laurel shushes her though , caught up in the way Lady Karnstein looks with the sunlight hitting her face at the perfect angle ,that makes her skin glow . With her dark hair cascading over sharp cheekbones and an angular jaw , she looks like an absolute angel , even if she isn’t smiling .
‘Who is she? ‘ she asks Lafontaine , ignoring the smirk on her friend’s face .
‘Lady Karnstein ‘ , Laf replies .
She tries again ,’I mean , what is her name ?’
Exasperated , she shoves Laf into the wall ,’Her first name ,you ignoramus!’
Chuckling , Laf obliges ,’ Mircalla ‘
Mircalla , Laurel muses , it sounds beautiful . Just like her .
The first time Laura Hollis sees Carmilla Karnstein , she is not in a good mood . It might be something to do with the fact that she is tired ( from all the late night vlogging that has been going on ever since Betty disappeared ) , angry at Laf , who exploded eggs and got yolk all over her favorite yellow pillow (‘ It was an experiment , Laura ! How was I supposed to know the temperature was too much ?’ ‘Oh ,I don’t know , by paying attention , maybe ?’) , and has run out of chocolate chip cookies . So she can’t exactly be blamed for the less than welcoming ‘ Who the hell are you ?’ she throws at the newcomer .
The girl turns around , and Laura freezes .
Not because the girl is hot , because its not that ( although the girl is gorgeous , no doubt about that . With the dark , curly hair framing a perfect bone structure , an aquiline nose and pouty lips , she is devastatingly beautiful ) . And definitely not because of her sexy , rasping voice which shoots a ‘Carmilla , sweetheart . I’m your new roommate ‘ at her before she turns .
Its when she looks into her eyes , her dark , intense eyes , that the strongest feeling of déjà vu washes over her . She knows this girl , knows her , knows her inside out , better than herself . She thinks ‘ I found you ‘ , and then gets confused , because clearly , this is the first time they’ve met , right ? Then why does this girl look so achingly familiar , why does she feel like the memory of her is just out of reach ?
Laura has been staring for a while now , so she breaks off the eye contact and coughs . The girl ( Carmilla , she thinks ) had been staring too . When Laura shatters the moment , she looks away , embarrassed.
‘ Do I know you?’ Laura asks , because she has to know . Maybe there is a perfectly reasonable explanation , like meeting her at a party or something , but she doesn’t have a lot a hope . Meeting someone at a party wouldn’t explain the feeling that coursed through her veins , the urge to touch Carmilla , to make sure she is real .
‘I’m pretty sure I’d remember someone like you ,cupcake ‘ she replies , and thus is born the saga of the annoying names .
She’s lived in this place all her life . Its not the most profitable town in the country , and it doesn’t provide a lot of opportunities , but its home . It’s where she was born, where she grew up playing with Laf , Kirsch and Danny , where she lost her mother ( it took her a lot of time , but now she can say that with a minimal amount of flinching ) and where her father taught her how to protect herself , how to fight (as a man of law , it was the only way he could express his love and adoration for his daughter ) . Its familiar .
What she has been feeling ever since she saw Mircalla , though , is not .
Its been two days since she saw her for the first time in the marketplace , since the Karnsteins moved into their sleepy little village , and her mind is consumed by thoughts of the dark-haired mysterious girl .She hopes she’ll run into her and get to unravel the mystery that she seems to be . Laf ,who is usually good at guessing her thoughts , nudges her . ‘You’re thinking about her again , aren’t you ?’
‘Thinking about who ?’ she asks , though it’s a half hearted attempt .
‘Mircalla , of course ,’ Laf answers ,’Your lady love ‘.
‘Laf , I don’t even know her ,‘and she sounds melancholy , because God knows she wants to .
‘So talk to her ‘
Laurel chuckles without a trace of humour ‘Yes , Laf , I suppose I’ll just walk into Karnstein hall , greet Dame Karnstein , walk into Carmilla’s room and demand an audience .’ Even here , they have heard tales of the cruelty and arrogance of the Dame , Carmilla’s mother , who doesn’t mingle with the lower classes , who has had countless servants and slaves flogged and thrown out of the province for small missteps and mistakes .
‘Actually , Laurel ,that is exactly what you are going to do’
‘I don’t understand’
‘You remember J.P , Kirsch’s gambling partner ?’, Laf asks , continuing when Laurel nods , ‘ Well , there is going to be a Grand Ball tonight at Karnstein Hall , which I suppose the Dame organized in order to show her influence in this province . J.P told Kirsch he was going to be serving at this ball , and promised he would let a secret door unlocked right in the vast gardens behind the hall . Which , basically means……’
‘I’m going to see her again’