Diablotin 2 session 10

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Diablotin 2 session logs
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Summary

Session

Session date:
Diablotin date:

Prologue

Sanadhil and Yanina

Narrator: Sanadhil, you have been mostly observing, though various females seem quite intrigued by you, and keep asking you to dance.
Narrator: Yet another one approaches you, and you would probably stifle a sigh, except that you recognize her...
  • Sanadhil will dance with them, but doesn't want to tire himself out
  • Noblewoman is very short and slim, with a mass of red curls - now gracefully coiffed, a far cry from from how you remember them, falling loose about her face as you kissed her in a darkened room. In the light, she looks slightly older than you would have guessed, perhaps around thirty or so.
Noblewoman:Good evening, sir.
Sanadhil: Good evening
  • Sanadhil smiles
Noblewoman:Secretary of State Yanina Trueblood, at your command.
  • Noblewoman says, returning your smile.
Sanadhil: I'm honoured, milady
Sanadhil: Would you care to dance?
Yanina:Thank you, I would.
  • Yanina will take your hand to let you escort her to the dance floor.
Yanina:I feel as though I ought to know your name :)
  • Sanadhil flushes slightly, embarased at his lack of protocol
Sanadhil: How rude of me, mademoiselle - Sanadhìl Orecalo
Sanadhil: I must have been stunned by your beauty
Yanina:It's a pleasure to make your acquaintance, M. Orecalo.
  • Yanina says, smiling.
Sanadhil: (I have no idea if she is married, do I? :o)
Yanina:(got any K: noble?)
Sanadhil: (of course not ;)
Yanina:(then no ;)
Yanina:I judge by your garb and your voice that you are not one of our local Cozovode. What brings you to Diablotin?
Sanadhil: I am a scholar. I came here to see your famous Castallia.
Yanina:Ah, I see. I hope the trip was worth it, then. Has it lived up to your expectations?
Sanadhil: it has been interesting so far
Yanina:Tell me a little about your homeland. It must be very different than Aveyrone.
Sanadhil: It is, very different.
Sanadhil: What are you interested in?
Yanina:I would love to learn more about your people's manners. I must learn not to offend them, after all ;)
Sanadhil: Ahh, yes
  • Sanadhil glances down in exagerated embarasment
Yanina:No doubt I've put my foot in my mouth a dozen times already ;)
Sanadhil: Well, its true that manners among the elite are quite formal
Sanadhil: Everything is itualized - this sort of event would be a rare, if unheard of, occurance
Sanadhil: The imperial family is much more withdrawn from society
  • Yanina appears fascinated by your tale.
  • Sanadhil will tell her a little bit about what he knows, trying to keep it interesting
Yanina:How interesting!
Sanadhil: its different
  • Sanadhil half shrugs
Yanina:Are you planning to remain here for some time?
Sanadhil: I hope to, yes
Yanina:Splendid, then perhaps we shall have a chance to meet again, M. Orecalo.
Sanadhil: I would like that very much
Yanina:I suppose I can contact you through the Castalia?
  • Sanadhil nods.
Sanadhil: I'm probably best contacted there through Elisabet (I forget her last name)
Yanina:Wonderful. Thank you for your charming company :)

Altheo, Ramon and Adrius

Narrator: Altheo, you have been attentively observing the gathering, trying to garner any helpful scraps you can from the overwhelming flood of information.
Narrator: The Lord Marshal of your Order is present, but avoids meeting your gaze. He is accompanied by a young woman about your own age, with poker-straight short black hair and a modest gown of pale blue and silver.
Narrator: As far as you know, he is a widower. Since it's difficult to imagine him being romantically involved with anyone, let alone a woman half his age, his companion is more likely to be his daughter, Marrith.
Narrator: He does a rather good job keeping her away from you ;)
  • Altheo files those bad little thoughts away for another day.
Narrator: You do spot Ramon nearby, if you wanted to speak with him.
  • Altheo will casually approach him.
  • Altheo takes a quick look around to make sure he isn't being watched.
Altheo:Enjoying the party?
Ramon:Of course, of course! And yourself, M. Renaud?
Altheo:Its been entertaining.
  • Altheo is trying to make extra sure no one is eavesdroping.
Narrator: (you don't think anyone is)
Ramon:I'm glad
Altheo:I have to admit. The beauty in this hall is amazing.
Altheo:[q]I danced with Felize.
  • Altheo is looking out over all the lovely ladies.
Altheo:How about you?
Ramon:Ah, I trust you've had an entertaining time with my dear Sister.
Ramon:Myself, I've been enjoying the music, and catching up with a few acquaintances.
Ramon:How is Felise?
Altheo:Well, I fear my charm may have been a bit much for her.
Altheo:She very nearly fainted while we danced.
Altheo:[q]and she had a message of warning for you.
Altheo:I assure you though, I was the perfect gentleman.
Ramon:Ah, you look maybe a little overly pleased with yourself, Altheo.
  • Ramon chuckles.
  • Altheo chucles as well.
Altheo:I know. Its been a while since I've had quite that effect on a woman.
Altheo:[q]She said to warn you they grow more powerful ever day.
Altheo:[q]they seek the one who will die and live again.
Altheo:I'm planning on a little gambling jaunt around town very soon.
Altheo:Perhaps you could join me? Help convince the other players that I'm an honest man.
  • Ramon looks puzzled, but tries to hide it.
Ramon:Maybe I could do that...
Altheo:With so many beautiful women in your family, I'd love the chance to drag little tidbits of information from you.
Ramon:M. Renaud, have you met my Great-Uncle?
Altheo:(did someone just arrive?)
Altheo:No, I don't think I've had the pleasure.
Ramon:(no)
Ramon:Well, you must, you must! He's sure to be around somewhere - lets see if he's in one of the dancing rooms.
Altheo:Of course.
Ramon:Ar maybe a drawing room? I suppose he doesn't dance any more...
  • Altheo will grab himself another drink from some waiter as they move through the crowd.
  • Ramon takes Altheo looking through the drawing rooms.
Narrator: You search for a bit, and manage to locate the Duke D'Olonne.
  • Adrius is a small, slim gentleman of about seventy, impeccably dressed, with wavy grey hair and blue eyes framed by laugh lines.
  • Adrius is engaged in conversation with a lady of a similar age, even shorter and thinner than him, her ash-blonde curls held back from her face by a slim sapphire band that matches her sedate blue gown.
Adrius: Ramon, what a pleasant surprise :)
Ramon:Uncle Adrius! It's lovely to see you.
  • Adrius stands to greet you.
  • Lady remains seated.
  • Altheo will let Ramon introduce him.
Ramon:I've brought a friend - M. Renaud, this is my Great-Uncle Adrius, the Duke D'Olonne. Uncle, this is M. Altheo Renaud, a businessman from the city. And this is...
  • Altheo will offer to shake the dukes hand.
Adrius: May I introduce Mme. Haemony Gallande, a friend of long-standing.
  • Ramon gestures towards Adrius' companion
  • Lady extends her hand.
Ramon:Wonderful!
Haemony: Charmed :)
  • Ramon takes Haemony's hand and bows.
Adrius: It's a pleasure to meet you, M. Renaud.
Haemony: Yes, a pleasure.
  • Altheo will also take her hand and kiss it gentlemanly.
Altheo:The pleasure is mine.
Narrator: (make a spot check, or SM, whichever is higher)
Altheo:(19 on SM)
Narrator: You think you see a slight expression cross her face - a momentary glimpse of something she's trying to hide. Interest, at the very least.
Adrius: A businessman, you say. What is your trade, M. Renaud? :)
Altheo:I run a tavern in the Pearl disctrict.
Adrius: How fascinating! It's been years since I've been to Pearl. I trust it hasn't changed much ;)
Altheo:As well as a few smaller investments in other trades within the city
Altheo:No, not much. With the possible exception of my Taver, The Rutting Boar, stealing the spotlight from a couple of the other old guards.
  • Adrius chuckles.
Ramon:So, Uncle, M. Renaud has a family message to impart - would we be remiss if we were to steal you to discuss it?
  • Ramon nods to Haemony
Adrius: Oh, of course. Excuse me, Haemony.
Haemony: Not at all. It's been fascinating. Good evening Adrius, Ramon, M. Renaud.
  • Adrius will walk aside with the two of you, then.
Ramon:I was most pleased to meet you - maybe we might catch each other later on?
  • Altheo waits until they have a bit of privacy.
Narrator: (was that to Haemony, Ramon?)
Ramon:(yes, just as we leave)
Narrator: (ok)
Haemony: Perhaps. The evening is growing late for an old lady, though, and I expect I will retire before long.
  • Haemony says before you depart.
Adrius: Is something amiss?
  • Adrius asks once you're somewhat secluded.
Ramon:I'm not sure, but it sounds like it could be.
Ramon:Altheo, could you explain?
Altheo:well, I was dancing with Young Felise.
Altheo:when she gave me a message for Ramon.
Altheo:"Tell him that there is great danger - they are growing more powerful day by day - they are seeking the one who will die and live again...
  • Adrius listens intently.
Altheo:And the she doubled over in pain.
  • Adrius looks perturbed.
Altheo:Her sister Viviane was by her side quickly. Claiming she has fainting spells.
Altheo:or "A bit to much to drink"
  • Ramon looks shocked
Adrius: Only very recently, I should think. She never suffered from anything like that when she was younger.
Altheo:I tried to stay with her as long as possible. But Her sister was insistent that Felise was fine.
Adrius: It's becoming ever more clear that we need to get Felise out of your mother's household, Ramon. Viviane too, I should think.
Altheo:It did seem a bit coincidental, that the pain would take her just as she was delivering her message.
Adrius: You could bring a case to the Green Rotunda claiming that your sisters are endangered by their continued presence in your mother's home.
Altheo:Do you think there could be some magical gease?
Adrius: It's one possibility.
Altheo:(Green Todunda?)
Altheo:Green Rotunda?
Narrator: (the high court. Where Kalman's marriage got dissolved, for instance ;)
Altheo:(ah, nevermind then.)
Adrius: But not only is that very public, but the length of time involved means that anything could happen before the case is even heard.
  • Adrius ponders the matter for a moment or two.
Adrius: If they could be extracted safely, do you have anywhere you could hide them for a time? I would gladly take them in myself, but I suspect my home would be the first place Phedre would look. Well, perhaps the second...
Ramon:I'm not sure if I have anywhere... but maybe Altheo could...
Altheo:I could hide a young woman or two if they were willing to lay low.
Adrius: I'll see what can be done, then.
  • Ramon looks hopeful
Altheo:Also, You are a member of the Order Ramon, I'm sure someone there could be convinced to help you.
Altheo:but maybe they have less spies among my people than among the nobility.
Adrius: Thank you for your help, M. Renaud.
Ramon:It's possible... I'll see who might be willing...
Ramon:Yes, thank you very much, Altheo
Adrius: I'll be in contact, Ramon. Thank you for bringing this to my attention.
Altheo:When a woman falls ill in my company, I'll will to help all I can.
  • Adrius shakes your hand firmly.
Altheo:(willing)
Ramon:Thank you for your help, Great-Uncle. I hope we aren't too late,
  • Altheo shakes it back.
Adrius: I pray you're right.
  • Altheo will keep walking with Ramon, someplace quiet.
Altheo:So, care to fill me in on some details?
Ramon:Well, my mother is involved in some kind of a cult - I don't understand all of the details, but it's never seemed very healthy and has been increasingly dangerous.
Ramon:A man named Earric seems to be the leader, and beyond that and the fact that my our mother is fanatic about it...
Ramon:It's all very worrying.
  • Altheo nods.
Altheo:And what of the girls?
Altheo:Do you think they are involved?
Ramon:I think that they've tried not to be - my mother was always very keen, though...
Ramon:I hope they've stayed clear so far.
  • Altheo nods.
Altheo:Can you tell me anything more about this cult?
Ramon:Well, Earric is my mother's Husband, and I think the cult started when they were married.
Ramon:They have some kind of ceremonies on the Down, and orgies, too.
Ramon:I don't know any more than that, I'm afraid.
Altheo:ah, I may have heard of them.
Altheo:I'll help anyway I can.
Ramon:You've always been agood friend, Altheo.
Altheo:Your welcome. Your a good friend too. We'll make sure your sisters are safe.
  • Altheo will shake his hand then go off to find his cousin, who he may or may not intend to bang.
  • Ramon will head back to the party, and try not to fret obviously.

Alma and Lord Grey

Narrator: Alma, you have been asked to dance more times than there are dances, and you are forced to turn down several prospective partners simply for lack of time. You do, however, find yourself making allowances for an extra dance with Patric Arguelles, since he asked so very nicely.
Narrator: You are somewhat unused to such exertions, and at last you retreat to the relative quiet of one of the drawing rooms to sit and catch your breath.
Narrator: You notice Biatrix seated with another elderly woman, perhaps eight or ten years her senior, with short-cropped silver hair, her dove-grey gown trimmed with mourning black.
  • Alma will approach.
  • Biatrix smiles to see you approach.
Biatrix: Oh, your highness, permit me to introduce Alma, Countess de Béziers. Lady Alma, the Princess-Imperial Katia.
  • Alma will curtsy respectfully. "Your highness."
  • Katia smiles gently.
Katia: Lady Alma, it's a pleasure to make your acquaintance.
Biatrix: Please do have a seat with us if you wish.
Alma: Thank you, Sister. I am nearing exhaustion -_-
Katia: Dancing can be a surprising amount of work, can't it.
  • Katia says kindly.
  • Alma sits, a little ungainly in her large dress.
Alma: And so warm...
Katia: These fans are not merely decorative, fortunately.
Katia: It's strange to be back in these rooms after so many years. I spent much of my childhood hiding from... well, playing hide and seek here.
Katia: Béziers, Béziers... Oh yes, I recall your father. Julien de Béziers, was it not?
Alma: A bit like coming home?
Katia: Very much so.
Alma: Yes, that was him :)
Katia: I was saddened to hear of his untimely death. Though, in truth, for those we love, no death is ever 'timely.'
  • Alma smiles to hear him recalled.
  • Alma nods at Katia's truth.
Alma: It was ... difficult for me and my brother, but he was a good man, and prepared us both well for life...
  • Katia nods.
Alma: How did you know my father?
Katia: Oh, I knew him at court. He was ever active in promoting your home county's trade and business interests.
Katia: My late husband was involved with a few of his plans.
Alma: (Nobility 19? Loick?)
Narrator: (You know she was married twice. Once to Loick Talavera, once, after she was widowed, to Kalman vak Andras, also a widower. That was only for a couple of years, though, you think.)
Narrator: (so, could be either of them, really)
Alma: I wonder which...
Katia: I don't recall the details, I'm afraid.
  • Alma nods.
Katia: I apologize for raising such a sad subject at such a joyous occasion.
Biatrix: I noticed you danced with young Patric twice, Alma. Tongues will be wagging ;)
Biatrix: Including mine, apparently.
Alma: It's nice to hear of my father, actually. I haven't spent much time in court yet, so I don't know as much about how he was seen :)
  • Alma shakes her head.
Narrator: An older gentleman, perhaps in his mid-sixties, with a fringe of greying curls about his otherwise bald head, approaches the three of you.
Gentleman: Princess Katia, may I request the honour of a dance?
Katia: Oh, my dear, I would, but my spirits are yet too heavy to lift with dancing.
  • Katia says with a sad smile.
Alma: .oO( :o )
Katia: Perhaps you might partner our charming young companion here, Lady Alma de Béziers, in my stead.
Biatrix: Yes, you'll like her, Grey. She's got a brain in her head.
  • Lord_Grey bows politely to you.
Lord Grey: Maze Olivier, Lord Grey, at your service, milady.
Alma: I would be delighted.
Alma: It was a pleasure speaking with you, your highness. Sister :)
  • Lord_Grey escorts you gallantly into the ballroom for a turn about the floor, then.
Katia: Yes, a pleasure. Enjoy the rest of your evening, Lady Alma.
  • Biatrix bids you a good evening as well.
Alma: And you as well :)
Lord Grey: Most pleased to make your acquaintance, Lady Alma. Biatrix doesn't speak so highly of just anyone ;)
  • Lord_Grey says as the dance begins.
  • Alma blushes a bit at his flattery.
Lord Grey: You are a priestess, if I'm not mistaken. At the Nine Elms in Rhenea?
Alma: Why, yes, I am.
Alma: Have you been?
Lord Grey: Ah, no. Though I may have to begin attending ;)
Lord Grey: It's most encouraging to see such a sense of service, of duty, in a young lady of your standing.
Alma: I ... do my best to live up to my title, and my role.
  • Lord_Grey nods.
  • Alma is not used to such flattery.
Lord Grey: Tell me, Sister, if you had an opportunity to serve the Empire, in a manner that wouldn't contradict your religious vows, would you take it?
Alma: If I were the right person for the task, of course.
Lord Grey: In this particular situation, I think you are the best-suited person possible.
Lord Grey: How well do you know Brother Phineas?
Alma: I ... this is not a rhetorical question?
Lord Grey: Not even slightly.
Alma: :o
Alma: I serve with Brother Strauch at the Nine Elms, but I am new there, so I do not know him as well as I could.
  • Lord_Grey nods.
Lord Grey: Sister, I have reason to believe he is involved in some ... shady dealings.
Alma: What kind of dealings?
Lord Grey: There was a matter of a necklace.
  • Alma is shocked, her rosy complexion paling.
Alma: Y-y-you cannot...
Alma: You cannot be suggesting Brother Strauch had something to do with that.
Lord Grey: I'm not certain.
  • Lord_Grey admits.
Lord Grey: But a man matching his description seems to have been involved, at least at some level.
Alma: (SM sucked)
Narrator: (well, it all sounds very strange, but he doesn't appear to be lying to you)
Alma: If you think he is involved somehow...
  • Alma stops, trying to think of who he should tell first...
Alma: You think that I can help find out the truth?
Lord Grey: I believe that you have access to him in a way few others do. And he has no reason to suspect you.
Lord Grey: If you don't believe you can help, just say the word. This conversation will never have happened.
Alma: I will need time to think about what I might be able to do.
  • Lord_Grey nods.
Lord Grey: I trust you to keep this matter confidential, Sister. It could be of the gravest importance.
Alma: Of course.
  • Lord_Grey bows politely to you as your dance concludes.
  • Alma curtsies and steps away to think.
  • Alma fends off any other dances with a plea of weariness.

Dominik and Laurine

Narrator: Dominik, you are making your way back into the ballroom after your rather engimatic conversation with Master Halden.
Narrator: You almost bump into Laurine, along with a companion of hers.
  • Laurine looks slightly uncomfortable in her unaccustomed finery. Her long brown hair is lifted off her neck, and slightly askew, but her cheeks are rosy and she seems in good spirits.
Laurine: Oh, hi Dominik! I mean, good evening, M. Rademacher.
  • Laurine says, with a belated curtsey.
Dominik: Hello Laurine
Laurine: I don't know if you've met before. My cousin, Miss Lygia of Gouge.
  • Laurine says by way of introduction.
  • Laurine is with an exceedingly tall and sturdy young woman, close to your own height, with strong features and long light brown ringlets trailing down her back. You've seen her training at the yard a few times - she's rather better than you.
  • Lygia gives you a curtsey as well. Her ruffled gown doesn't really suit her figure, it calls attention to her strong shoulders and arms.
Dominik: A pleasure to meet you Lygia. I have seen you around before have I not?
Lygia: At the yard, I suppose.
Laurine: She's Master Halden's daughter, but he doesn't let her call him that in the yard - she has to show him the same respect everyone else does.
  • Laurine says with a smirk.
  • Dominik smiles as well
Laurine: Void, I'm his favourite niece, I'm lucky he doesn't make me abase myself to him just to make up for all those times he bounced me on his knee and pinched my cheeks when I was little!
  • Laurine jokes.
Dominik: Instead he just has the likes of me beat you up with pratice weapons.
Laurine: I think he enjoys it :p
Lygia: I don't suppose you've seen my father about, have you? We were just looking for him.
Dominik: I was speaking to him just a few moments ago... just head the way I came from.
Narrator: Another young lady sweeps up to you.
Dominik: I must be poor company if the two of you are leaving so soon.
  • Cynthea of Gouge is one of the most celebrated beauties of the city, dark-haired and petite, with a flawless olive complexion and a waist you could probably span with your hands.
  • Cynthea takes Lygia by the arm, as if about to deliver some confidence to her.
Cynthea: Your father's drunk again, Gia. Best see to him before he makes a scene.
  • Cynthea says, voice oozing false concern.
  • Lygia simply stares at her, brown eyes flat and deadly.
Lygia: Thank you. Next time, though, do try not to be such a cunt, Cynthea.
  • Cynthea looks shocked as Lygia strides off in the direction you indicated.
  • Dominik is somewhat taken aback by the blunt language
Cynthea: Well!
  • Cynthea departs in a huff.
Laurine: ...Well!
  • Laurine says, after they've both gone.
Dominik: I hardly know what to say
Dominik: except I'm used to siblings not getting along
  • Laurine is also momentarily shocked into silence.
Laurine: They're cousins, but yes.
Laurine: Some old story there.
Dominik: obviously
Dominik: That is quite a different look for you.
  • Laurine looks down at her gown, as if surprised to see it there.
  • Dominik glances at Laurine's outfit
Laurine: Oh, this! I don't know, I don't care for it much. But I suppose it's appropriate.
Laurine: Um.
Dominik: I think it looks quite appealing on you... although it may be difficult to swing a sword in.
  • Laurine looks a bit embarassed.
Laurine: Not very practical, no.
Laurine: Well. Do you think we should go after Lygia, or, um, would you like to dance instead?
Dominik: I just left Halden in a very gruff mood. A dance would be a much better encounter.
  • Laurine nods, looking somewhat relieved.
  • Dominik will take Laurine's arm
  • Laurine takes it gratefully.
Laurine: Lygia's about the only one who can deal with him when he gets like that. Even Aunt Ysana can't, really, but she can.
Dominik: They relate on a differnt level, I imagin, Lygia and Halden.
  • Laurine nods.
Dominik: Who was your escort for the evening? Lygia?
  • Laurine smiles.
Laurine: Yes, well, neither of us had partners, so we just decided to come together.
Dominik: If I had but known, I could have intervened, but alas I was left in the dark.
Laurine: Well, that's all right. It's more fun this way anyhow :)
Dominik: I, myself, came alone.
Laurine: Really? I would have thought you'd have, um.
Dominik: um?
Laurine: I mean, that's nice :)
Laurine: I just would have thought you could find someone to go with you, if you wanted. But maybe you didn't. That's okay.
  • Laurine seems a bit flustered.
Dominik: Like you, this kind of event is not something I cherish.
Dominik: But I am being the dutiful son.
  • Laurine nods, gratefully.
Laurine: It's good of you to put up with this ;)
Dominik: Its not all bad. Some parts have been quite easy to put up with, as you say.
  • Dominik smiles
  • Laurine smiles back.
  • Laurine curtseys to you as your dance concludes.
Dominik: Thank you for the dance.
Dominik: I feel like getting some air.
Laurine: Thank you, Dom.
Laurine: Some air would be good, actually. It's kind of stifling in here.
Laurine: Oh, unless you meant you wanted to go alone, and were just being polite to get rid of me ;)
Dominik: I welcom your company
Laurine: All right then.
  • Laurine will join you outside on the terrace, and we'll move on...

Seth and Cornelia

Narrator: Seth, you are left somewhat perplexed by your conversation with Chancellor and Princess-Imperial Theonée Deverara, but not so stunned that you are unable to note her means of departure, which involves an unobtrusive passageway behind a column rather than the main doors. She clearly knows her way around the palace, which would make sense - it is, after all, her childhood home.
Narrator: You pass some time eavesdropping discreetly on conversations. Most are filled with dull pleasantries, but some are rather more interesting.
  • Seth will skulk without seeming too creepy, hopefully.
  • Seth makes note of that passageway though
  • Young_woman is in her mid-twenties, dark-haired and petite, with a flawless olive complexion and a waist you could probably span with your hands. She wears a dark red crepe gown that suits her perfectly.
  • Other_young_woman is around the same age, taller and more curvaceous, with wavy blonde hair and heavy-lidded blue eyes, wearing a gown of sky blue damask and white lace.
Young woman: My uncle is drunk again. It's :*so:* embarassing.
  • Other_young_woman makes sympathetic noises.
Young woman: Anyway :p
Seth: (do I recognize either of them?)
Narrator: (got K: noble?)
Seth: (no ... city lore?)
Narrator: (you can give it a shot, the DC will be high though)
Seth: (28)
  • Cynthea is Cynthea of Gouge, daughter of the count and countess of Greenforge, and you only know who she is because she's one of the city's noted beauties.
Cynthea: (The other one, you don't recognize)
  • Seth will just listen along, anyway
Cynthea: Who in the world did Ida Arsenios bring? He looks like a vintner.
Other young woman: Well, maybe he's hung like an ostler.
  • Other_young_woman says dryly, making her companion titter behind her fan.
  • Seth stifles a chuckle.
Cynthea: I rather like the look of the gentleman Princess Eglantine's so taken with, though. They've waltzed three times already - once more and he might as well lift her skirts on the dance floor and have done with it.
Other young woman: He is fine-looking, isn't he. Even more handsome than the Duke of Brissarthe. It's a wonder we've never noticed him before.
Cynthea: A shame, really.
  • Seth looks over to where they are looking. Anyone in particular that I recognize?
Narrator: Well, you can certainly spot Princess Eglantine, that's fairly easy.
Seth: (is she with anyone right now?)
Narrator: The Emperor's sister Eglantine is dancing with a strikingly handsome young gentleman, tall and trim-waisted. His hair is a dark, burnished auburn, and his skin is unusually pale, which draws attention to his very dark eyes. You don't recognize him.
Seth: (and do I know who Ida Arsenios is, or who she is with?)
Narrator: (You think you recall that's who Altheo was announced with.)
Narrator: (but you don't know who she is, beyond that.)
Cynthea: Do you want another drink, Brielle?
  • Seth will continue to listen idly.
Other young woman: Some more of the lime punch, that's delicious.
  • Other_young_woman and Cynthea depart your general vicinity, then.
Narrator: You spot your Aunt Gwen dancing with an older, balding, grey-haired gentleman in a rust-coloured jacket; they appear to be deep in conversation, though perhaps not entirely amicably.
  • Seth will wait until an appropriate time to interrupt.
Narrator: You're just trying to make out what they're talking about, when someone clears their throat directly adjacent to your left ear.
  • Seth turns to see who it is.
Narrator: You turn and recognize Cornelia Nash, once guard captain, now Warlord.
  • Cornelia Nash is a tall, sharp-featured woman with steel-grey hair worn back in a simple braid bound with silver clasps. She wears spectacles with a slight bluish tint to the lenses. Despite her age, she moves smoothly and fluidly, and she is dressed in wide-legged trousers and a loose, flowing dark blue tunic. At her wrists are finely-engraved leather guards.
Seth: Ahh ... good evening, Warlord.
Cornelia: Seth Argo, is it not?
Seth: Yes, that is correct.
Cornelia: I know your sister, Mistress Brock, and her husband the Captain of course. Charming family.
  • Cornelia eyes you levelly.
Cornelia: And your aunt, naturally.
Seth: Ah yes, of course.
  • Cornelia smiles at that.
Seth: Aunt Gwen is well-known throughout the city, I suppose.
Cornelia: I don't know about that. She's certainly made an effort not to be.
Seth: Hmm, yes, well, there is that.
Seth: It's a lovely evening, isn't it?
Cornelia: Is she about?
  • Cornelia says, ignoring your question.
Seth: Oh ... ahh, that is to say, I believe I saw her earlier ... there she is. I'm afraid I don't know who that gentleman is with her, however.
  • Cornelia glances in the direction you indicate, and frowns.
Cornelia: Please let her know that her unsanctioned ...activities may have been permitted, even encouraged by certain parties before the election, but they are disruptive and potentially dangerous now. Continuing to work outside the system will not prove healthy for anyone.
Seth: Ahh, well ... I shall inform her, certainly.
Cornelia: If she's involving you in her affairs, you would be wise to disentangle yourself. For your own best interest.
Seth: Thank you for the advice.
Seth: I am always eager to learn from those wiser than I in the ways of the court.
  • Cornelia smiles thinly at that.
Cornelia: You seem to have a good head on your shoulders, I'll give you that. I don't suppose you've considered a career in the guard?
Seth: I'm afraid that my professional commitments to the scholarly study of architecture must be my first priority at present, madam.
Cornelia: Architecture, is it now. Fascinating.
Seth: Why yes, it is. For instance, if you see the column over there, near the punchbowl, you will see that it is fluted in a way that seems as if it is extremely ancient, when in fact the trained eye can see signs of repair, probably within the past decade.
  • Cornelia arches an eyebrow.
Cornelia: Very good eye.
Cornelia: Have you noticed anything unusual about the ceiling here?
Seth: Ahh ... no, but allow me to have a closer look.
  • Seth will examine it.
Seth: (27)
Narrator: (typing, sorry ;)
Narrator: The high ceiling is painted in vibrant colours, depicting scenes from ancient history - the arrival of the six tribes to the river valley that would become Diablotin, the conquest of Plascencia, the discovery of the Iles Furneaux, the making of the six Great Contructs, a flight of dragons, and so forth. You suspect the paintings have been altered or repaired over the years, and you notice that one of the chandeliers is ever so s
Seth: (chandeliers is ...)
Narrator: is ever so slightly off-centre, compared to the rest. Apart from that, just the usual odd crack in the plaster or bit of damaged scrollwork.
Seth: Hmm ... the depiction of the six Great Constructs is fascinating. The manner of their construction, and indeed of all constructs, is a fascinating historical question for me, and one to which I have paid some careful attention.
Seth: Beyond that, I do note a small infelicity ... but perhaps it would be untoward to draw attention to that fact.
  • Cornelia nods, listening.
Cornelia: Please, be untoward. I'm most curious.
Seth: Ah, well ... it is just that one chandelier has been positioned in a manner that suggests either an error, or perhaps that a modification has been made at some point to create an inappropriate and unseemly asymmetry.
  • Cornelia chuckles.
Seth: It is not the sort of thing that would be noticed, I suppose, except upon the most careful inspection.
Cornelia: That chandelier would have crashed to the floor this evening. Fortunately, we were able to spot it in time and make the necessary structural repairs.
Seth: This evening? You mean ... it has been recently altered to create havoc? :o
Cornelia: Who can say?
Seth: If I may ask, madam ... why are you telling me this?
Cornelia: Your aunt does not know everything, Seth Argo. There are powers at work beyond her reach.
  • Seth nods uncertainly.
Seth: I imagine so, yes.
  • Cornelia chants something in a low voice, and you can make a Will save, DC 20.
Seth: (nope, 13)
Narrator: This conversation has been pleasant and informative, and you are left with the sense that Cornelia Nash is quite helpful, intelligent, and trustworthy. Her warnings about your aunt make perfect sense.
Narrator: (well, maybe not :*perfect:* sense, but they are probably valid, at any rate)
  • Seth nods firmly in agreement with his social superior.
Seth: Yes, of course you are correct.
Cornelia: Good evening, Mr. Argo.
Seth: Good evening.
  • Cornelia says, turning to depart.

Guillame and Aden

Narrator: Guillame, you are deep in conversation with M. Aden Olivier, strolling at the moment down the long, rather crowded Marble Gallery, stopping now and then to admire the likeness of one Emperor or another.
Aden: Have you noticed, the Marble Gallery is almost full. They've nearly reached the end.
Narrator: Especially when you consider that the most recent statues aren't here.
Guillame: I suppose they'll have to start a new one...
Aden: Perhaps they can turn and start going in the other direction. Or tear the wall down.
Guillame: Push all the statues back, and start a new row
  • Aden_ laughs.
Aden: Perhaps they could, at that.
Aden: They might start looking crowded, though, and that wouldn't be very dignified.
Guillame: True - but they'd have their predecessors looking over their shoulder, which might make them think twice!
Aden: Oh, I doubt many Emperors think twice - thinking once is enough effort ;)
Guillame: Think once, then on to the next thing.
  • Aden_ nods.
Aden: They're very busy, after all.
Guillame: All these parties, to keep us nobles happy.
Aden: Are you happy?
  • Aden_ asks, quite seriously.
Guillame: Eh? Me?
Aden: Yes, you.
Guillame: I'm having a good time, if that's what you mean. I think I said earlier, I'm surprised to be enjoying the party.
Aden: I meant more... in general.
Guillame: Well...
  • Guillame thinks
  • Aden_ rounds a corner and you find yourself before a door you didn't know was there. It leads out onto the terrace, and the gardens below.
Guillame: I'm quite proud of the work I'm doing at the Antiquarian society, and of my family. But happy...?
Guillame: Well that's a lovely view.
Aden: It is. It almost sneaks up on you, doesn't it.
Guillame: It does- I didn't know this door was here.
Aden: Would you care to walk outside?
Guillame: Certainly.
  • Aden_ glances down at your shoes to see if they're even remotely suitable.
  • Guillame nods
  • Aden_ opens the door for you, then.
  • Guillame hasn't even considered it.
Aden: You don't notice how stifling it is in there until you get outside.
  • Aden_ admires the gardens, though actually it's mostly rather dark. There is sufficient moon- and star-light to see by, though.
  • Guillame watches the leaves, and insects
Aden: I wonder what grows in the Firefly Gardens that attracts them there. They should plant whatever it is here, for the light ;)
Guillame: Yes - although I think it might be a shame if this garden were never dark. It's pretty in a different way.
  • Aden_ nods.
Aden: I feel a strange sympathy with you, Guillame. I feel as if you... you understand.
  • Guillame looks questioningly at Aden
  • Aden_ smiles hopefully.
Guillame: I- maybe I do.
Aden: Perhaps we should be getting back...
  • Aden_ glances over his shoulder at the palace, with its brightly-lit windows and distant sounds of music and voices.
Guillame: I suppose so... we wouldn't want to miss it if a dragon exploded, would we.
  • Aden_ chuckles at that.
Aden: I could stand to miss that, I think.
  • Guillame looks reluctant, but also relieved
Guillame: Yes, once is enough!
Aden: More than enough.
  • Aden_ isn't exactly hurrying back.
  • Guillame isn't either, but does turn toward the building.
Aden: Are you... do you think you'd want to...
Aden: ...come to a Levellers meeting? I know most nobles wouldn't be caught dead at such a place, but you seem... different.
Guillame: I'd be honoured to, Aden. I don't think it'd be too inappropriate for a member of House Rat to be seen to think that we need reform.
  • Aden_ looks relieved.
Aden: Oh, wonderful :)
  • Aden_ grasps your hand.
  • Guillame smiles
  • Aden_ lets it go after a few moments.
Guillame: So...
  • Guillame steps in the direction of the building
  • Aden_ will follow.
Guillame: ... when is your next meeting?
Aden: Oh. I would have to ask Thea, she's really the one in charge. I suppose probably in a week or two.
Aden: I'll send you an invitation :)
Guillame: Please do!
  • Aden_ almost bounces up the stairs, he's so pleased.
  • Guillame finds himself chuckling
Narrator: You return to the crowded hall, then.

Ilphère and Marl

Narrator: Ilphere, things have been going better than you'd dared hope this evening. You've just been helping yourself to some of the delightful little amuse-bouches they have strewn about the place for nibbling, and enjoying a glass of sparkling wine that runs the risk of going to your head.
Ilphere: . o O ( yummy...! )
Narrator: Menard is dancing with one of the most beautiful women you have ever seen. She looks to be in her early twenties, with long, thick, dark brown hair cut into bangs across her forehead.
  • Ilphere nibbles a canape nervously.
Ilphere: . o O ( who is that...? )
Narrator: She is short and slender and delicate, and wears a remarkable gown of crimson and gold, gathered and draped most artistically - if you know anything about fashion, you would expect that by the next party, many women will be copying this style. He is laughing, and looks as if he's enjoying himself greatly. And yet, oddly, you find you're not worried for once.
Ilphere: (K: nob)
Narrator: (roll away)
Ilphere: (sec lost sheet D:)
Ilphere: (only 11 anyway)
Narrator: (nope, no idea.)
  • Ilphere snacks some more, but tries not to look like a pig
Narrator: "Excuse me, Mlle. DeQuessenet," says a voice behind you.
  • Emperor_Marl bows politely to you.
  • Ilphere turns around, hoping there aren't any crumbs on her face.
Ilphere: ...!
Ilphere: Oh, good evening...!
  • Ilphere curtseys.
Emperor Marl: May I have the honour of this dance?
Ilphere: Your majesty.. of course...!
  • Ilphere is rather surprised.
  • Emperor_Marl escorts you on to the ballroom floor. Crowds part for you when you're with the Emperor, for some reason ;)
Emperor Marl: You look enchanting, as usual.
Ilphere: Why thank you... You look very dashing as well...!
  • Emperor_Marl smiles.
Ilphere: This is a lovely ball... Thank you for the invitation...!
Emperor Marl: But of course! It would not be half as lovely without you here.
Emperor Marl: How are your studies proceeding? Have you made any great discoveries since last we spoke? :)
Ilphere: You are too kind...!
Ilphere: Well, things are moving along... I am working on a paper with M. Orecalo...
Emperor Marl: Ah, your escort for the evening?
Ilphere: Yes, that's him. :)
Emperor Marl: What does your paper concern?
Ilphere: Oh, well, M. Orecalo's research focuses on enchantments, so it is a blend of our interests...
  • Emperor_Marl listens attentively.
Ilphere: Well, comparative enchantments... Magical as opposed to innate abilities, such as those possessed by extraplanar beings.
Emperor Marl: Fascinating. I've heard you've been making breakthroughs outside the hallowed halls of the Castalia as well.
Ilphere: Oh...?
  • Emperor_Marl smiles.
Emperor Marl: Some extracurricular research, as it were.
Ilphere: I'm not sure I follow...?
Emperor Marl: No, of course not.
Emperor Marl: Perhaps we might discuss it at a more private event than this, though, eh?
Ilphere: Well... that might be best...! :o
  • Emperor_Marl holds you just a little more closely.
Ilphere: ...
Emperor Marl: I have been considering, Ilphere, whether you are truly suited for my brother.
Ilphere: . o O ( Wha..? )
Emperor Marl: You are a fascinating woman... so full of intelligence and energy. Perhaps too good for a dullard like him.
Ilphere: Well I... I wouldn't say that of him...!
Emperor Marl: Of course not, you're far too kind.
Emperor Marl: And yet, if it became publically known that you were involved with anyone ...disreputable, it could cast shame on the Imperial family as a whole.
Emperor Marl: Despite this little... difficulty, we still wish to bring our families closer together, in some fashion. The deQuessenets have ever been valued allies.
Ilphere: [q] I can assure you that any involvement with disreputable characters is purely academic...!
  • Ilphere says through a smile
  • Emperor_Marl smiles more broadly.
Emperor Marl: Gods, you are remarkable.
Emperor Marl: My cousin the Count of Desperée is a widower... The union would be well-suited to your station, of course. I have suggested that he speak with your parents.
  • Ilphere tries to conceal her disappointment.
Emperor Marl: I'm certain it will be a rare pleasure to have you in my family.
  • Emperor_Marl murmurs, lips almost brushing against your ear.
Narrator: Your dance comes to an end, and Marl graciously bows to kiss your hand.
  • Ilphere smiles courteously, although her skin crawls.
Narrator: Your head is whirling, whether from the spinning of the waltz or something else, you cannot say.
Emperor Marl: I am ever at your service, mademoiselle.
Emperor Marl: I hope you remain long enough to see the fireworks. They will be quite spectacular, I'm given to understand.
Ilphere: I'm sure they will be lovely...!
  • Ilphere says sweetly.
  • Emperor_Marl takes his leave of you, then.

Ysabeau and Altheo

Altheo: So Ysabeau, care for a dance?
  • Ysabeau has just managed to compose herself after her interlude with Dominik.
  • Ysabeau is almost startled by Altheo; she was lost in thought.
Ysabeau: Oh - Altheo!
Altheo: Your looking lovely this evening.
  • Altheo smiles brightlly.
  • Ysabeau blushes and smiles at you.
Ysabeau: I don't know about a dance right now... but a talk might be good.
Ysabeau: You're probably actually just the person I need to see right now.
Altheo: Well, then I am honored.
  • Altheo will have a seat next to you, close enought to talk, but not so close that it would look innapropriate.
  • Ysabeau looks around to see if anyone is within hearing distance.
  • Ysabeau will speak in lowered tones; she looks a bit afraid.
Ysabeau: Altheo - did you see when the Emperor stopped to talk to me?
  • Altheo looks calm but concerned, he'll also keep an eye out.
Altheo: I'm sorry, I did not.
  • Altheo waits to see were your going with this.
Ysabeau: He did... he recognized me. Almost.
Ysabeau: I mean, I looked familiar to him but he couldn't remember exactly where he'd know me from.
Altheo: but you remembered him?
  • Ysabeau nods.
Ysabeau: I thought I recognized him already from the engravings in the papers, when they were still choosing the emperor.
Ysabeau: Now seeing him in person...
Ysabeau: He hired me once, a few years ago before I came to work for you. He hurt me, a lot. He was getting off on it. I'm almost certain it was Marl Kizer...
  • Altheo eyes go wide.
Altheo: really.
Ysabeau: And when he spoke to me I was too frozen with fear to misguide him, maybe make him think he saw me playing once or something, and that's how he recognized me.
  • Altheo 's voice sounds cold.
Altheo: Did he only see you that once?
Ysabeau: I really hope he doesn't remember. I hope there's too much going on here for him to dwell on me and remember.
  • Ysabeau nods.
Ysabeau: I mean, there's no reason to believe he'd want to... do that again.
Ysabeau: Oh, gods I'm being stupid, jumping at shadows.
Altheo: Don’t be afraid. I'm sure if he didn't recognize you right away then you are safe.
  • Ysabeau nods.
Ysabeau: It's just frightening, you know... because the master of ceremonies has my name and address and all, and so I'm feeling pretty vulnerable right now.
Ysabeau: But you're right, I shouldn't imagine that anything might come of it other than hopefully a few more gigs.
Ysabeau: I feel kind of sorry for whoever he marries, though.
Ysabeau: ...
Altheo: I wouldn't worry too much about that.
Altheo: He will be marrying someone of high nobility.
Altheo: I'be be more worried for whoever happens to be his chamber maid.
Altheo: Tell me more about that night? Where were you working at the time?
Ysabeau: In the Shambles, freelance.
Ysabeau: He was wearing Castalia robes.
  • Altheo nods, listening.
Ysabeau: He did pay me twice what we agreed on for my troubles...
Altheo: was he drunk?
Altheo: And how hurt were you?
Ysabeau: No. He wasn't angry, either. He just liked inflicting pain.
Ysabeau: Well, he didn't break any of my bones. I was bruised in many places, though. I had a black eye and a split lip.
Altheo: Not the kind of trait I'd like to see in my emperor.
Ysabeau: Me neither.  :/
Altheo: So much about you is different now though Ysabeau.
Altheo: Your clothes, hair, even your demeanor.
Altheo: I'm sure there is little chance He'll remember where you look familiar from.
Ysabeau: I hope not, because what could I do against an emperor? If I tried to fight back the guards would be on me.
Altheo:There are always ways of protecting yourself.
Altheo: After all, you are hardly a little girl in the shables yourself, and an emperor has enemies.
  • Ysabeau tucks a stray lock of hair behind her ear; she is listening, though.
Altheo: And in these times, there are less and less people willing to submit blindly to am Emperors rule.
Altheo: If he does figure it out, he's more likely to bribe you to silence than he is to hurt you.
Altheo: Everyone has weaknesses.
  • Altheo smiles at you.
Altheo: You'll be alright.
Altheo: I truely believe that.
  • Ysabeau smiles, trying to take courage from your words.
Ysabeau: Thank you, Altheo.
Ysabeau: If I do disappear, at least one person will know what happened to me.
  • Ysabeau jokes.
Altheo: Your welcome. (Its easy to feel courageous around Altheo, there is a confidence around him these days. Aura of courage)
Altheo: I'd find a way to avenge you. But i doubt it will come to that.
  • Ysabeau actually laughs.
Ysabeau: You're too funny, Altheo. ^-^
Altheo: thank you.
  • Altheo gives a small bow from his seated position.
Altheo: It may come to pass that I am forced to save another couple of young girls that may be in trouble.
Ysabeau: Oh?
  • Altheo says, sort of segueing.
Altheo: Yes.
  • Ysabeau looks puzzled - you have a constant stream of girls coming and going at the Boar, so it seems an odd thing for you to say.
Altheo: It seems a friend of mines sisters are still in the custody of their mother. Who has remarried and joined some sort of sex cult.
Ysabeau: The one on the Downs?
Altheo: I think so, though I'm not sure.
Altheo: He wants to get them away from there. I think they may be being forced into things they don't want to do. Like orgies
  • Ysabeau looks shocked.
Ysabeau: Their... mother is pimping them out?
Altheo: I don't know for sure.
Altheo: But if your mother is in a weird cult, generally your going to be expected to join.
Altheo: He's going to try and get them away from her, but fears retaliation from his mother.
Altheo: So I may be the one finding them a place to stay.
  • Ysabeau is still trying to forget about how a mother could do that to her daughters, but she nods.
Altheo: Its always easier to fix these things in the lower income parts of the city.
Ysabeau: Lose them in a crowd...
  • Ysabeau nods.
Altheo: Well, I don't think the Boar will be a good fit for them. If they figure out I'm involved they'll come looking there.
Altheo: But I'm sure I'll find someplace I could hide them, that wouldn't get traced back to me.
Ysabeau: You should be able to.
  • Ysabeau agrees.
Ysabeau: I could look for some places for rent, if you like?
Altheo: Thank you. If you hear of any in your neck of the woods, I'd love to hear about it.
Ysabeau: I'll see what I can find.
Ysabeau: Um, if they need to stay somewhere for a little while, they might be able to stay with Muri and I. But I'd have to make sure Verity is okay with that, first.
  • Altheo smiles at you.
Altheo: Thank you Ysabeau, I don't want to put any strain on Verity and you, but if that would be possible I'd be very grateful.
Ysabeau: I'll ask her when I get the chance.
Altheo: And don't be shy about letting me know if your having any troubles. No matter who is giving them to you.
Altheo: Your my friend. I'm there if you need me.
  • Ysabeau gives you a quick kiss on the cheek.
Ysabeau: Thanks, Altheo.
  • Altheo gives you a small hug, then will take his leave of you.

Seth and Sanadhil

  • Seth meanders through the ball, trying vainly not to look too out of place.
  • Sanadhil is standing back watching sme of the conversations going on around the buffet table sort of curiously, looking comfortably out of place
  • Seth spies you and heads over.
Seth: Good evening, M. Orecalo.
Sanadhil: Good evening Mr. Argo
Seth: Are you enjoying your evening?
Sanadhil: yes - it's been very engaging.
Sanadhil: And you?
Seth: Ah, well, I'm afraid that I am not well suited for these sorts of events.
Seth: It's all too opulent for my tastes ... although it is an exciting opportunity to examine some of the architectural features of the palace.
Sanadhil: I suppose - i've been finding it interesting enough just to watch al the people here.
Sanadhil: is there anything particularly interesting about this place?
  • Sanadhil glances around
Seth: Are you here with someone this evening, or by yourself?
Sanadhil: I accompanied Mlle. de Quessenet.
Seth: Ah, how lovely. I'm sure this sort of thing is quite familiar to her.
Sanadhil: I imagine so. I'm afraid i've lost track of her, but last time I saw her she was in the company of the prince Imperial, so i suppose she's in good hands
Seth: Yes, I saw them earlier. Prince-Imperial Menard is a sometime acquaintance of mine.
Sanadhil: Oh really?
Seth: The Kizers and Argos have been allied families for some decades now.
Sanadhil: I see - the new Emperor must be a boon for your family then?
Seth: Some say that this will be so, yes.
Seth: For my part, I can't say that other than this invitation, my life has changed radically, though.
  • Sanadhil nods
Sanadhil: So, no Imperial enmdowment for the society, then?
  • Sanadhil says lightly
Seth: Well, we shall have to see. :)
Seth: I do think that it is possible that some benefit may derive to us.
Sanadhil: time will tell - it's still quite early
Sanadhil: Though I admit the pace of things here is all relatively rushed for me
Seth: I would think that rather than a general endowment, if we were to become involved in researching some of the recent and unusual events that have occurred, there might be some prestige and some more tangible rewards to be accrued.
  • Sanadhil nods
Sanadhil: I wasn't sure if the government would have appreciated having outsiders look too closely into those affairs - i figured they would rather they be forgotten by the general public as soon as possible
Seth: Well, perhaps ... in times of real crisis, however, it's unlikely that such things can be covered up, don't you think?
Sanadhil: not entirely, of course.
Seth: And in times of need, who else should our government turn to other than a trusted and benevolent learned society? :)
Sanadhil: there is that.
Sanadhil: I wonder if mlle. Chanuier has made any progress on her investigation
Sanadhil: I should inquire...
  • Sanadhil says, half to himself
Seth: I don't know her very well ... do you?
Sanadhil: Somewhat - she's one of my students.
Sanadhil: But I don't know her personally
Seth: Ah, I see. Well, I trust that she will be discreet in her work.
Sanadhil: One would hope.
Sanadhil: I'm not certain that the society's resources are quite extensive enough to find what she was looking for in any case
Sanadhil: but i could be wrong - I haven't looked myself
Seth: Yes, but it is never futile to make the effort to learn more.
Seth: And I have often found that a scholarly temperament is well-suited to investigations of a less bookish bent.
  • Sanadhil nods
Sanadhil: Intellectual curiousity is a marvelous asset
Sanadhil: I have found, in any case.
Seth: Indeed, indeed.
Seth: Well, M. Orecalo, it has been a pleasure speaking to you, but I'm afraid I see my Aunt Gwen across the ballroom, and I had promised to check in on her before the end of the evening.
Sanadhil: Very well - enjoy your evening, M. Argo.
  • Seth scurries off to find his wayward aunt.

Ysabeau, Ruston and Adam

  • Ysabeau has managed to come out of the shadows again after her conversation with Altheo.
Narrator: Ysabeau, you are still somewhat shaken up from your encounter with the Emperor. You are taking refuge in one of the sitting rooms when a young gentleman approaches you.
  • Gentleman is dark-haired and fair-skinned, with striking blue eyes. He is perhaps not conventionally handsome, but his face is interesting to look at.
  • Ysabeau looks up at him and smiles politely.
Gentleman: Excuse me, is this seat taken?
  • Gentleman asks, gesturing to the seat beside yours.
Ysabeau: Not at the moment, sir.
Gentleman: Where are my manners... Ruston Arguelles.
  • Gentleman gives you a bow before sitting down beside you.
  • Gentleman is now known as Ruston
Ysabeau: (Is that one of Verity's kids?)
Ruston: (no, her kids all go by her husband's surname, Kolbe. But he's probably some nephew or cousin.)
Ysabeau: Pleased to meet you, sir. My name is Ysabeau. Ysabeau Chanuier.
Ruston: Charmed.
Ysabeau: Are you enjoying the evening?
Ruston: It's been delightful so far, yes.
Ruston: Where is your escort, that he's abandoned you so cruelly? :)
  • Ysabeau kind of doesn't want to talk to him but she's in show business so she is friendly and open. Maybe he wants to hire the quartet.
Ysabeau: Oh, I'm one of the musicians who were playing earlier this evening. Not a guest, as such.
Ruston: Oh, I see. So I have you to thank for the beautiful music?
Ysabeau: If you heard it, you do. But my quartet's sets were over some time ago. We were playing in the Ruby Room.
  • Ruston nods.
Ruston: I believe I passed through there.
  • Ruston is seated rather too close to you for your comfort.
  • Ysabeau tries to put some space between them without seeming to.
Ysabeau: (SM: is he after some commoner to lay because he can't get a noble lady?)
Narrator: (you can roll)
Ysabeau: (23)
  • Ruston is definitely checking you out slightly more than is appropriate.
Ruston: Miss Chanuier, would you care to join me in a stroll about the grounds?
  • Ruston is possibly somewhat intoxicated as well, you note.
Ysabeau: Actually, I'm just fighting off an illness. I fear the night air would be too chilly for me. But thank you anyway.
Ruston: Oh dear. Nothing serious, I hope.
Ruston: You do look a little flushed.
Ysabeau: No, no, just a cold. But when you sing for a living, you must take good care of your voice.
Ruston: Let me check your temperature...
  • Ruston says, laying his hand on the back of your neck.
  • Ysabeau takes his hand and removes it from her neck.
Ysabeau: Sir, I assure you I am well enough without your ministrations.
Ruston: You're burning up... or is it just that you've set me afire?
  • Ruston leans in to kiss you.
  • Ysabeau jumps up and moves out into the lit ballroom.
  • Ruston grabs you by the arm before you can leave.
  • Ysabeau looks at him with a somewhat frosty expression.
Ruston: Don't think you're going anywhere, girl.
  • Ruston says under his breath.
Ruston: You're here to oblige the guests.
Ysabeau: You forget yourself, sir. I had taken you for a gentleman.
Ysabeau: I was here to play music, nothing more.
Ysabeau: Now if you will excuse me.
  • Ysabeau pulls away from him and tries to escape once more into the crowds in the more well-lit ballroom.
Narrator: The room is mostly deserted, but another man approaches, perhaps having spotted your plight. He looks vaguely familiar.
Other man: Ruston, for the gods' sakes, don't make a fool of yourself.
Other man: Are you all right, Miss Chanuier?
Ysabeau: (who is it?)
Ysabeau: I will be as soon as I'm in a more populated area.
Narrator: It takes you a moment before you realize it's Verity's husband, Adam Kolbe. You've only seen him a few times, and never spoken to him.
  • Ysabeau flashes him a quick, hopeful little smile.
  • Adam_Kolbe will escort you quickly out to the ballroom.
Adam Kolbe: I apologize for my nephew. He's drunk, and also an idiot.
Ysabeau: It's all right. He didn't do anything, really.
  • Adam_Kolbe has thinning red hair, and is rather stout, but has a kind face.
  • Adam_Kolbe nods.
Ysabeau: Thank you for stepping in.
Adam Kolbe: I'm glad.
Ysabeau: Have you had a good evening so far, Captain?
Adam Kolbe: I'm not in my element at this sort of event, I'm afraid. But it's been pleasant enough.
Adam Kolbe: And yourself?
  • Ysabeau is rather self-conscious speaking to the husband of her lover. Can a man be cuckolded by a woman?
Ysabeau: It's been rather tumultuous, to say the least.
  • Adam_Kolbe seems slightly uncomfortable himself.
Ysabeau: I'll be glad to get out of here.
Adam Kolbe: Would you like me to stay, or escort you anywhere, or do you think you're all right now and would rather I just left you alone...
Ysabeau: Oh, you shouldn't leave... leave your wife on my account...
Ysabeau: I'll manage.
  • Adam_Kolbe smiles faintly at that.
Adam Kolbe: Do you have friends here, at least? Perhaps one of them might join you, if you don't wish to be left alone.
Ysabeau: My fellow musicians are probably here, somewhere... if they haven't found someone to do a private recital for.
Ysabeau: I'll see if I can find them. Please - don't trouble yourself over me.
Adam Kolbe: It's no trouble. I would hate to see you come to any harm.
Adam Kolbe: My wife would be desolate.
  • Ysabeau blushes and bites her lip.
Adam Kolbe: Here, let's go find some of those friends of yours.
Ysabeau: Where :*is:* she, anyway? You should be with her, here.
  • Adam_Kolbe chuckles.
Adam Kolbe: It's not done for couples to dance every dance together. She's well partnered, I'm sure.
Ysabeau: Of course...
  • Ysabeau blushes again.
Adam Kolbe: Don't worry. We'll still be going home together.
  • Adam_Kolbe says mildly.
  • Ysabeau nods.
  • Adam_Kolbe will walk with you at arm's length as you scan the room for your friends.
  • Ysabeau looks for any sign of Stefan, Jehan or Symon.
Narrator: You eventually spot Symon, getting some refreshments.
  • Ysabeau can also look for Ilphere, or Sanadhil ;)
Ysabeau: Oh, there's Symon.
  • Adam_Kolbe will walk you over there, then.
Adam Kolbe: Good evening, Miss Chanuier. Thank you for your charming company.
Ysabeau: Good evening, Captain. Thank you for your help.
  • Adam_Kolbe bows politely and takes his leave.
  • Ysabeau curtseys to him.
Ysabeau: Symon?
Symon: Ysabeau, you're just in time for the fireworks :)
Ysabeau: I've had plenty of firebombs already this night...
  • Ysabeau mutters under her breath.

Fireworks!

Narrator: Most of the assembled guests have made their way out onto the terrace and into the elaborate formal gardens to observe the pyrotechnical wonders. It is said that thousands of Imperials have been spent on this single night's display of splendour.
Narrator: The night is clear and a bit cool, and the stars scattered across the sky give ample light for you to make your way. At ground level, there are discreet magical lights lining the paths, so you don't risk stepping into a flowerbed.
Narrator: (this is for everyone who's still there, btw)
Narrator: The fireworks are a remarkable sight, sending brilliant flashes of coloured light high into the sky, where they explode with shrieks and screams in torrential waterfalls of sparks that drift gracefully downwards.
Narrator: The piece de resistance is a great wheel of fire, spinning in the sky as it throws off shards of near-blinding light, gradually fading from the centre outwards, until only an outer ring remains, spiralling slowly in mid-air. Finally, that too fades into blackness.
Narrator: Ilphere, you can't help but be reminded of your strange vision of a week past, though of course it's only fireworks...
  • Ilphere contemplates the sky and the stars...
Narrator: The ball continues until the small hours of the morning, though guests drift away as the evening wears on, and others plant themselves in the sitting rooms to win or lose fortunes at cards and dice. Some of you depart alone, others with company...
Narrator: (and we can probably arrange solo time if you had anything else you wanted to do at the ball)
Narrator: Those of you who went through the Arch at the last Order of the Black Down meeting, you wake the following morning (one week after the ceremony) feeling strangely dull-witted, weakened, or clumsy.
Narrator: That is, whatever attribute you had increased, it's now :*decreased:* by two from its usual level. Cheers!

Ilphère and Ysabeau

  • Ysabeau is working on a term paper, or perhaps doing some of the research she is supposed to do for the society, in a room set aside for study that is not in the library, so we can talk.
  • Ilphere bustles into the study room, with a pencil stuck behind her ear and her glasses perched atop her head, hair a bit more unruly than usual, and looking a tad frazzled.
  • Ysabeau looks up, a slight frown on her face (from being interrupted in her studies) but smiles when she sees it's you and not some stranger.
Ilphere: Oh...! hello!
Ysabeau: Ilphere - you look like you've been up all night?
Ilphere: Oh..! Do I...?
  • Ilphere brushes some hair behind her ear, disloding the pencil.
Ilphere: Ah..!
Ysabeau: Your hair... Would you like me to fix it?
  • Ilphere bends over to pick it up, remembering at the last minute to hold on to her glasses.
Ilphere: If... if you want...
Ysabeau: Come, come. Sit. ^-^
  • Ilphere sits down.
Ilphere: I don't know what's wrong with me... I feel so muddle-headed...!
  • Ysabeau stands up and gestures for you to sit in the chair she has vacated, and then starts fussing with your hair and trying to tame it into some semblance of array.
Ilphere: Ever since the ball...
Ysabeau: That makes two of us.
Ysabeau: What happened to you?
Ilphere: Oh, well...
Ilphere: I don't know if I should say...!
  • Ilphere looks uncharacteristically glum.
Ysabeau: Secrets are for sharing with close friends.
  • Ilphere glances around to make sure there's nobody within earshot.
Ilphere: I think Marl has decided he doesn't want me to marry Menard any more...!
Ilphere: :(
Ysabeau: Oh...
Ysabeau: But His Highness seemed to enjoy his dance with you.
Ilphere: He seems to want me for himself... but... but not to marry... if you know what I mean...?
  • Ysabeau drops the comb she was using.
  • Ysabeau bends to pick it up; her face looks pale.
Ilphere: He says that I associate with disreputable characters and so he wants to fob me off on some widower count, I guess so he can... keep me close, and well...
Ilphere: I think it is not very seemly...!
  • Ilphere 's shoulders sag a little.
Ilphere: My parents will be so disappointed in me...!
Ilphere: And I was starting to quite like Menard... :(
  • Ysabeau comes around to the front of her chair and kneels before you so she can look you in the eyes without you having to crane your neck.
  • Ilphere looks at you glumly.
Ysabeau: Ilphere... you have to stay away from Marl, at all costs.
  • Ysabeau looks quite concerned.
Ilphere: I don't want to be ... with him... not at all...!
  • Ysabeau looks also quite frightened for you.
Ilphere: I thought he was alright, but after the ball...
Ilphere: He made my skin crawl; I felt so dirty...!
  • Ilphere hugs herself unconsciously.
Ysabeau: He is not a good man.
Ilphere: You know something about him...?
  • Ysabeau nods slowly.
  • Ysabeau stands up again and moves behind the chair and starts fussing with your hair again.
Ilphere: What is it...?
Ysabeau: He'll hurt you, Ilphere.
  • Ilphere nods slowly...
Ysabeau: You're right to feel wary of him.
Ilphere: Did... he do something to you? Or someone you know...?
Ilphere: Dominik told me he was... not a good person before, but... Dominik doesn't have nice things to say about many people.
Ysabeau: Dominik was right about him.
Ilphere: Well, clearly...!
Ysabeau: Ilphere... there's a lot you don't know about me. It's not that I want to lie to you, but that I'm afraid of rejection.
Ysabeau: But Dominik already knows, and he didn't reject me, so here goes:
Ysabeau: You know I'm an orphan. Our parents died when I was 10.
  • Ilphere nods...
Ysabeau: My sister and I lived on the streets but we couldn't make ends meet.
Ysabeau: So I became a... a prostitute.
Ysabeau: Marl hired me once. At least I'm almost certain it was him.
Ilphere: Oh... my!
Ilphere: :o
Ysabeau: He hurt me, badly.
Ysabeau: It excited him to hurt me.
  • Ilphere looks quite worried now...
Ilphere: That's... that's awful...!
  • Ilphere wrings her hands.
Ilphere: I don't know what I will do if my parents decide it's best I marry Count Wossname... :(
  • Ysabeau nods.
Ysabeau: I don't know what to suggest, but I felt it important that you know.
Ilphere: I knew he was bad, but ...
Ilphere: I wonder if Menard would help me... or if he would just believe the awful things Marl is probably going to tell him...
Ilphere: He might not even speak to me...!
Ysabeau: What could possibly be awful about you?
Ilphere: Nothing..! I haven't :*done:* anything...
Ilphere: ... but...
Ilphere: I have been associating with some people who are involved in... things
Ysabeau: ...
Ilphere: THings that are difficult to explain...
Ysabeau: What sort of things?
Ysabeau: Oh.
Ysabeau: Try?
  • Ilphere looks around once again...
Ilphere: [q] You must :*swear:* not to tell a soul! Not your sister, not anyone...! Not Dominik, or Sanadhil...!
  • Ysabeau apparently has arranged your hair in a suitable fashion and comes around in front of you again.
Ysabeau: I won't.
Ilphere: [q]I have been.... investigating the Order of the Black Down...
Ysabeau: [w]That sex cult?
Ysabeau: o.O
  • Ysabeau has trouble picturing you at a sex cult.
Ilphere: [q] So I have been to a couple of meetings... but I didn't do anything like that! I only pretended...!
  • Ilphere covers her face with her hands briefly.
  • Ysabeau covers her mouth to stifle a giggle.
Ysabeau: [w] Pretended to have sex?
Ilphere: But someone saw me there, probably Dominik's brother... and he told their horrid sister I suppose, and she must have told Marl
Ilphere: So now he thinks I am... like that!
  • Ilphere nods
Ilphere: It was dark...!
Ysabeau: [w] I'm sorry, I know this is serious for you.
  • Ysabeau tries to compose herself again, although it is hard to get rid of the image of you pretending to have sex.
  • Ysabeau takes a deep breath and looks sensible again.
Ysabeau: Well, I can see why you're concerned.
Ysabeau: I'm not sure what to suggest. I know that "Maybe you're better off without marrying anybody related to the Kizers" won't cut it.
  • Ilphere nods unhappily...!
Ilphere: In some ways I am not as free as you...
Ysabeau: Um... are you a virgin? You could maybe submit to being... inspected by a priest or something who could vouch for you that you couldn't have done those things he's accusing you of.
Ilphere: Having to submit to such an indignity would be scandalous in itself...!
Ysabeau: While that probably wouldn't convince Marl to let you marry his brother, it might clear your name...
Ysabeau: Is there anyone they'd trust who could vouch for you? I'm guessing no... because they'd have had to be at these... events... themselves in order to do that.
Ilphere: There isn't anyone...
  • Ysabeau is trying. ;_;
Ysabeau: (If Julia were here, I'd ask for a Divine Insight roll on how to get you out of this pickle)
Ilphere: To be fair even knowing I was there at all will probably put Menard off...!
Ilphere: He seems a bit... squeamish...
Ilphere: I am at a loss...!
Ysabeau: Well, obviously, I don't know him. So I am not sure how to handle him at all.
Ysabeau: Let me think on things. Maybe there's something we're missing.
Ysabeau: (I'll email Julia and ask about that Divine Insight roll.  ;D )
Ilphere: It seems the best I can hope for is that my parents will be angry enough at the slight to refuse the Count, and then continue on with my research...! :(
Ilphere: Maybe... I hope so...!
Ysabeau: Well... would that be such a horrible thing, truly? I can tell you love your research.
Ysabeau: There are worse things than to immerse yourself in that which you love.
Ilphere: It would be very disappointing for my family, but better than the worst thing...!
  • Ysabeau nods.
Ilphere: I guess... that I would be disappointed as well...
Ysabeau: :/
Ysabeau: You love Menard?
Ilphere: I was just beginning to get to know him...!
Ilphere: It seemed like... I don't know, I thought he was nice. ANd that he might like me... even though I'm ... strange...
Ilphere: But probably not, I guess...!
Ilphere: ... I guess it really would be too much for most people to take...
  • Ilphere looks down, fiddling with her skirts.
Ysabeau: Well. What makes you think that Menard had any inkling that Marl would hold this over your head?
Ysabeau: He may not know himself. He might like you... but I think you may be right, that people would have trouble accepting your innocence, especially with all the strange things that have been going on.
Ilphere: I don't think he knew at the ball... I think Marl only found out that night...
  • Ysabeau nods.
Ilphere: Even if it could be proved beyond doubt that I am still chaste... I think that it must be unseemly for an emperor's brother to marry someone who is involved with something like this... That is what I mean...!
Ysabeau: Well, I'm not the best person to hand out advice on relationships... but I've found lately that it really is better to be honest and up front about things.
Ilphere: Well, please let me know if you think of anything...
Ysabeau: If Menard is going to find out anyway, or already knows - would it hurt to invite him to have a discussion?
Ysabeau: you could tell him the truth.
Ysabeau: The worst he could do is decide he doesn't want to speak to you, which - yes, would hurt. But maybe he would come, and appreciate your candour. Maybe you could still be friends at least.
Ilphere: I cannot invite him myself... It's not seemly. :(
Ilphere: But my parents could...
  • Ysabeau nods.
Ilphere: You are right... at this point I have nothing to lose there...!
Ysabeau: Maybe they ought to hear it from you, too. Before they hear it from someone else.
Ilphere: That is... less appealing...!
Ysabeau: Not everything that must be done is.
Ilphere: With respect... you don't understand my family...!
Ysabeau: No, I don't.
Ilphere: I'll think about it...
  • Ysabeau nods.
Ysabeau: It sounds like you've got yourself some pretty strong political enemies. And I don't really trust them not to use that against you. The best thing would be is if it never gets out at all.
Ysabeau: But I think you have to be prepared for it to be.
Ysabeau: I'm sorry that I can't really offer you anything more hopeful.
Ysabeau: :/
Ysabeau: But for what it's worth - I believe you. I support you.
  • Ysabeau reaches down and gives you a gentle squeeze of your hand and a fond smile.
Ilphere: Thanks... :)
Ysabeau: Ilphere?
Ilphere: ...hm?
Ysabeau: If you don't mind... if you could keep my secret, too?
Ilphere: Oh...! Oh of course...!
Ilphere: Of course I will!
Ysabeau: I work hard on my studies. I don't want any good marks I earn to be attributed to me sleeping with the teachers or something.
Ysabeau: Thank you.
Ilphere: I understand...!
Ilphere: I'm so glad I could talk to you about this...!
Ilphere: ;_;
  • Ysabeau smiles.
Ysabeau: Any time, Ilphere.

Guillame and Portia

Narrator: So, this would be after you've returned inside with Aden... oh, I might need another window for this, sec.
Narrator: Guillame, as you converse with Aden, a woman approaches the pair of you. You recognize her as Portia Larache, Duchess of Corcyra, one of the most prominent and prestigious members of your House (and unmarried, as your mother would no doubt point out were she here!)
  • Portia Larache is widely reputed as a great beauty, one of the most lovely women in a hall full of perfectly adorned and coiffed ladies. Her hair is honey-blonde, piled in such a way that it looks like it might spill down at any point, and yet somehow it doesn't.
  • Guillame bows
  • Aden_ does as well.
  • Portia is tall, with a perfect figure that is only enhanced by the slim waist and full skirts of her pale green crepe gown.
Portia: M. Olivier, a pleasure to see you here.
Aden: And you, your grace.
  • Guillame waits politely
Aden: May I introduce my friend, Guillame Rionet?
Portia: Oh, of course, M. Rionet. Your lady mother is well, I trust?
Guillame: Very well, I'm glad to say.
  • Portia smiles.
Guillame: If I might ask- how fares Coryra, these days?
Portia: As well as can be expected. I have not been there in .. oh, it must be six months, at least, but I hear all is in order.
Portia: M. Olivier, if you are not otherwise engaged, might I request the pleasure of a dance?
  • Aden_ glances at you, then back at her.
Aden: Ah.. I'm afraid I was just about to go and attempt to locate my escort for the evening and ensure that she doesn't require anything. Perhaps later :)
Portia: Of course. M. Rionet, perhaps you might take his place, then :)
  • Guillame looks to Aden, but can't really refuse.
Guillame: I'd be delighted, of course.
Portia: Splendid!
Aden: It's been a pleasure, Guillame. I'll be in touch.
  • Aden_ says before she can whisk you away.
Guillame: Good luck finding your escort!
Aden: Thank you!
  • Portia takes your arm as you make your way onto the dance floor.
Portia: It's a beautiful party, isn't it.
Guillame: It's lovely - I've said to several people now how much I'm enjoying it; more than I expected.
  • Portia smiles at that.
Portia: How long do you think it will be before such a celebration is held for one of our people?
  • Portia asks idly.
  • Guillame frowns
Guillame: I wish I could say I thought it would be soon.
Portia: Indeed. But frankly, I doubt it will be in my lifetime.
Guillame: I agree. I doubt even that it will be within the next cycle, if the houses have their way.
Portia: Well, if they had their way, we wouldn't be here at all.
  • Portia could as easily be chatting about the latest fashion in hats to a casual observer of your conversation.
Guillame: Yes, so it would seem... and yet I'm not completely certain of that.
Portia: Oh?
Guillame: Just something I came across recently in my studies - it seems that after the exodus, somebody took steps to prevent our people from returning to the undercity. I haven't verified it thoroughly, though - it could be nothing.
Portia: Fascinating. I had no idea you were a scholar, M. Rionet.
Guillame: Well, I try to better myself - it's a satisfying method.
Portia: Are you well-acquainted with M. Olivier?
Guillame: I wouldn't say well-acquainted - but acquainted, certainly.
Portia: I find his candour quite refreshing.
Guillame: I do too, at that. He's very open.
Portia: And while I may not agree with him on every particular, at least he acknowledges that something has to change, which is more than most of them will do.
Guillame: Exactly!
Portia: You seem very enthusiastic on this subject :)
Guillame: Well, my Father worked hard for us to be accepted into city society - I feel like it's my duty to make sure his hard work doesn't come to nothing.
Portia: I see. You are not alone in this... enthusiasm, if I may say so.
Guillame: That's good to know.
  • Guillame nods seriously.
Portia: I hope we will have a chance to speak more of this at some point, M. Rionet.
Guillame: I'm sure that can be arranged.
  • Portia dips a slight curtsey to you as your dance concludes.
Portia: Thank you - it's been a delight.
Guillame: Why, thank you. I'll be sure to tell my Mother you asked after her.
Portia: Yes, do. It has been too long since I had her to tea.
Portia: Good evening, M. Rionet.
Guillame: Good evening
  • Guillame bows again.
  • Portia takes her leave, then.

Ilphere and Justine

  • Justine is eagerly awaiting your report the morning after the ball. She brings breakfast to your room so you can talk.
Justine: So? Did you enjoy yourself? :)
Ilphere: Oh... good morning, Maman...!
  • Ilphere looks a little glum, or apprehensive...
Justine: Is something the matter?
Ilphere: I did have a good time ... but then...
Ilphere: IOh I don't know what to do...!
Ilphere: Things were going very well with Menard, and then...!
Ilphere: And then I was dancing with the Emperor and he said...
  • Justine sits down on the edge of your bed, listening intently.
Ilphere: He said he didn't think I should marry his brother anymore...!
Justine: Oh, dearest, no!
  • Ilphere 's voice climbs in pitch..!
  • Justine looks very upset.
Ilphere: He wants to fob me off on the Compte de Desperee!
Justine: Oh... oh.
  • Justine considers this for a moment.
Ilphere: Some old man...!
Justine: Your father's age. :/
Ilphere: He probably has grown children already, at least as old as I am...!
  • Justine nods.
Justine: He has two, I think. Younger than you, but not much.
Justine: It... it would not be such a terrible match, if it must happen :/
Ilphere: Oh Maman...! How can you say that..?!
Justine: Oh, I know, sweetheart.
Ilphere: It is... It is insulting...!
  • Ilphere lets some of her anger at Marl come out, even if she can't tell her mother all of what he said...!
Ilphere: He was... quite rude!!
Justine: To you? :o
Justine: What did he say? Perhaps you only misunderstood.
Ilphere: I don't recall exactly... Something about how he had thought it over and I was not suited to his brother, how the Count was better suited to match someone from our family...!
  • Justine frowns.
Justine: Well, that is absurd!
Ilphere: And... and I was beginning to quite like Menard... :(
Justine: The Escaleras are a very good family, of course, nothing to sneeze at. Kaladon will be Duke of Mearim when his parents pass on. But - as you said, he has two children already, and so any children you might have, they would hardly be likely to inherit his titles.
Ilphere: So what would even be the point..?!
Ilphere: It doesn't help our family at all...!
Justine: Well, the security, the money... :/
Ilphere: I might as well marry some rich :*merchant:*...!
  • Justine looks horrified.
  • Ilphere covers her face in her hands, wishing she could tell her mother the rest of it without being disowned.
Justine: Oh no, dear, it's not as bad as all that! :o
Justine: But... he :*is:* much older. I believe he is in the Order of the Spoke as well - not the sort of husband a young girl dreams of :/
Ilphere: No indeed....!
  • Ilphere concurs morosely.
Justine: You say you believed you were getting on well with Prince Menard?
  • Ilphere nods.
Ilphere: He seemed to like me, I thought....
Justine: Well, then surely this is not :*his:* decision.
  • Justine says confidently.
Justine: And if he had become betrothed to someone else, surely we should have heard about it.
Ilphere: I don't know how much influence Marl has over his brother...
  • Ilphere says hesitantly.
  • Justine considers,.
Justine: If you could meet with Menard - just to gauge his feelings about this, and see if, by any chance, he is unhappy about it...
Justine: Well.
Justine: There are many factors to be weighed here, my sweet.
Ilphere: You think it is worth a try...?
Justine: I am not certain. A marriage to the Emperor's brother does us little good if the Emperor himself opposes it. He could ruin us, all of us, if he so chose.
Justine: But...
  • Ilphere nods glumly, looking down at her hands.
Justine: If Menard has some influence over his brother, and could speak to him about this, perhaps sway him... it might be worth trying, at least.
Justine: We must be cautious about this, though.
Ilphere: I don't want to marry the comte de Desperee...
Ilphere: Cautious...?
Justine: If word gets out that we were going against the Emperor's express wishes in such a matter, it could cause a great deal of trouble.
Justine: It may be that you have to meet the Count, at the very least, to preserve the impression that we are amenable to the match.
Ilphere: . o O ( I wonder if I could put :*him:* off... )
Ilphere: I.. I suppose...
Ilphere: But not until Marl proposes it officially... right...?
  • Justine pats your hand.
Justine: If the Count comes calling on your father, we shall have to receive him, of course.
  • Ilphere nods again...
Ilphere: But I would really like to talk to Menard...
Justine: We will solve this problem, Ilphere. No daughter of mine is going to be forced into a loveless marriage!
  • Ilphere puts on a brave face...
Ilphere: Thank you...!
Justine: But... promise me this. If you keep an open mind about the Count - perhaps he is not so bad as he sounds. If you think you could be content with him, then... perhaps it would be simplest.
Ilphere: I... I will try... :(
Ilphere: . o O ( not very hard...! )
Justine: As for Menard - it might be that the best thing would be for you to send him a note yourself. He will know you are serious about things then.
Ilphere: Very well... I will...!
Ilphere: How much do you think I should say...?
  • Justine considers that.
Justine: You have to let him know that you are unhappy, though not terribly obviously of course.
Justine: Perhaps you could say something like "Certain unwelcome developments give me cause to wish to speak with you at your earliest convenience."
Ilphere: Yes, that's very good...!
  • Ilphere agrees eagerly...!
  • Justine smiles.
Justine: I hope he will read between then lines, then.
Justine: And if he calls here, your father and I will make ourselves scarce.
Ilphere: Thank you…!
  • Justine gives you a kiss on the forehead and leaves you to ready yourself for the day, then.

Ilphere and Menard

  • Menard will pay you a visit, then.
  • Ilphere has had her mother help her to fix her hair prettily, and is wearing one of her nicer gowns...
  • Menard looks a bit the worse for wear, but generally presentable.
Menard: Mlle. deQuessenet.
  • Menard bows politely.
Ilphere: Your Highness...
  • Ilphere curtseys gracefully.
Ilphere: I am so glad you could come...!
  • Menard smiles grimly.
  • Ilphere begins to worry more, but keeps a smile on her face.
Menard: I cannot stay long, I'm afraid, but I could not simply ignore your message.
Ilphere: I was afraid you would not come at all...
  • Ilphere ducks her head and looks away for a second, tucking a curl behind her ear.
Ilphere: Please, sit down...!
Menard: I wanted you to know, I had no idea what my brother was planning.
Menard: He only spoke with me about it today.
Menard: Oh, of course.
Ilphere: Oh, he has told you... !
Menard: I apologize for my rudeness - I'm a bit disconcerted.
Ilphere: About the Compte de Desperée...
  • Menard will sit.
  • Menard nods.
Ilphere: As am I... !
Menard: I don't understand why he changed his mind so suddenly :/
Ilphere: To say that I was... disappointed... would be a rather polite understatement...!
Ilphere: Forgive my boldness but... has he said who he would rather...?
Menard: I confess, I was as well.
  • Menard admits.
Menard: I... I had begun to grow quite fond of you, Ilphere.
Menard: No decision has been made in the matter of my own marriage - at least none that I've been informed of!
  • Menard says with a slightly cynical laugh.
Ilphere: I ... I was beginning to rather like you as well... :(
  • Ilphere frets with her skirt, wondering if she should tell him about Marl's horrible advances.
  • Menard smiles at that.
  • Menard reaches across to take your hand from where you're fiddling with a bit of lace.
  • Ilphere looks up, surprised...
Menard: Ilphere...
Menard: I don't know what to do.
Ilphere: Nor do I... Mother says that if I defy Marl, it may go badly for us...!
Ilphere: I am afraid... your brother is not who I thought he was... :(
  • Ilphere tries to repress a slight shudder.
  • Menard nods fervently.
  • Menard looks concerned at that.
Menard: What do you mean?
Ilphere: Oh...! I shouldn't have said anything... I..
Ilphere: I didn't want to bring that up...
Menard: No, please...
Ilphere: ...
Ilphere: He... made certain... intimations, or... innuendoes to me...
  • Ilphere says haltingly.
  • Menard moves to kneel in front of you.
Menard: Oh. Gods. ]_[
Menard: He didn't do anything... did he?
Ilphere: He said that he wanted to... to keep me close...
  • Menard winces.
Ilphere: No... No, thank the gods!
Ilphere: I am so sorry... I didn't want to bring this up...!
Menard: No... no, it's best that I know.
  • Menard looks very unhappy, though.
Ilphere: I didn't want to make you feel... worse...
Ilphere: . o O ( I am very bad at this..! )
Menard: If... if we were to marry, I don't know how I could keep you safe from him, Ilphere. He would always be nearby, and... :/
Ilphere: Well I... I am not completely defenseless...!
Menard: But you should not have to be constantly on your guard against your own family!
Ilphere: If I marry the Compte it will be the same...
  • Ilphere says miserably.
  • Menard is really quite inappropriately close to you right now, still clutching your hand, but doesn't seem to care.
Menard: Kaladon is a Spokesman, though. And so much older, with a title... and he doesn't live at the palace.
Menard: Oh, Void, why am I even telling you this?
Menard: I can only believe you would be safer with him, but... The fact that Marl suggested it himself makes me wary.
Ilphere: I thought maybe if nothing else I could put the Compte off...!
Ilphere: Many people find me... strange...
  • Menard smiles.
  • Ilphere looks down into her lap.
Ilphere: It would not be difficult to... accentuate that...!
Menard: You :*are:* strange.
Menard: Wonderfully strange.
  • Menard tips your chin up with his hand so you are looking at him.
Menard: May I...
  • Ilphere looks up with wide eyes...
Ilphere: Yes...?
  • Menard kisses you, then. Quite chastely, but still...
Ilphere: ...!
  • Ilphere is happy to allow that...!
  • Menard draws back after a moment, but keeps holding your hand.
Menard: ...I probably shouldn't have done that.
Ilphere: Don't say that...!
Ilphere: Please...
  • Ilphere finds herself inexplicably misting up.
  • Menard does it again, then.
  • Ilphere draws a little nearer...
  • Menard wraps his arms around you, then.
  • Ilphere melts into them.
  • Menard leans into you, bearing you back onto the couch, perhaps a little more vigorously than he intends, since he apologizes ;)
Ilphere: Oh...!
Menard: I'm sorry...
Menard: I'll stop...
Ilphere: No it's... it's alright...
Menard: I ... won't your parents...?
Ilphere: Well... I am not sure when they will be returning, no...!
  • Ilphere blushes a bit and tucks away some escaping bits of hair.
  • Menard looks torn.
Ilphere: I... I feel very strongly about you... and I...
Ilphere: I don't know what to do about all this...!
Menard: I don't even really know what I'm doing.
Menard: I just know that I like you. Very much.
  • Menard says quite seriously, while half-lying atop you.
Ilphere: As do I...
Ilphere: I didn't think I... I ever would...
Ilphere: . o O ( but you might not if you knew everything... :( )
  • Menard swallows nervously.
Menard: We should not... I mean, I think if we keep doing this, I might... gods ]_[
Ilphere: You mean... doing this right now...?
  • Menard nods.
  • Menard draws back from you slightly.
Menard: I don't want to... be like him :/
Ilphere: You aren't...
Ilphere: But I... I understand... we shouldn't ... move so quickly...
Menard: Yes... you're right.
Ilphere: Not when everything is... is so uncertain...!
  • Menard lets you sit up, then.
  • Ilphere covers her face in her hands...
Menard: Are you all right?
  • Menard sounds concerned.
Menard: I didn't hurt you or anything, did I?
Ilphere: No, no of course not...!
Ilphere: I'm just...
Ilphere: I feel ... lost...
Menard: We will find a way through this.
  • Menard says, more confidently.
Ilphere: We will...?
  • Ilphere looks up, semi-hopefully.
Menard: Well.... I don't know.
  • Menard admits.
Menard: But I am going to do whatever I can to let us be together.
Ilphere: Oh...! Do you really mean it...?!
  • Menard nods.
Ilphere: I... I am so happy...!
  • Ilphere blinks away the threatening tears...!
Menard: Would you still want to be with me if... I don't know, it meant that my brother stripped your family of their title, or we had to live somewhere else, or...
  • Menard bites his lip.
Ilphere: I... hope it would not come to that... but... yes... yes I would...!
  • Menard looks surprised, but pleasantly so.
  • Ilphere is a bit surprised to hear these words come out of her mouth.
  • Menard kisses you again, more vigorously this time.
  • Ilphere clings to you tightly!
  • Menard finally stops, though with considerable difficulty.
  • Menard 's heart is hammering, you can feel it against your chest.
  • Ilphere leans her head on your shoulder...
Menard: I .. I would like very much to stay here with you, Ilphere.
Ilphere: I... I can't do that now... :(
Ilphere: My mother will come home at some point..!
Menard: I know. I wasn't asking.... not really, anyway.
Menard: I'm afraid I must be going.... Your parents would surely not approve if they found us like this, either ;)
Ilphere: . o O ( You might be surprised...! )
Ilphere: I hope I will see you again soon...
Menard: It may be difficult, but I'll try. Is there somewhere else we might be able to meet?
Menard: If I continue visiting your family's house, Marl will suspect something. This was meant to be a goodbye visit only :/
Ilphere: It is probably easier for me to go somewhere unnoticed than you...!
  • Ilphere thinks...
Ilphere: But perhaps at someone else's home... a friend...?
Menard: I could visit Seth's house, I suppose - I don't think anyone would find that strange.
Ilphere: M. Argo?
Menard: Yes... I believe the two of you are acquainted?
Ilphere: We are in the Antiquarian society together, yes...!
Menard: Oh, the Society!
Menard: I could meet you there, perhaps. Although there would be many eyes on us, I suppose...
Menard: At least at Seth's house, I could ask him to leave. Politely. He owes me ^-^
Ilphere: Perhaps you could speak to him then...?
  • Menard nods.
Menard: I'll do that.
  • Ilphere smiles.
Ilphere: I will wait to hear from you then...?
Menard: I may send word through Seth - it will avoid suspicion.
  • Ilphere nods.
Menard: Farewell, Ilphere.
Ilphere: Farewell...
  • Menard composes himself as best as he's able, smoothing his clothing down so he doesn't look like he was just rolling around on a couch before departing.
Ilphere: (lol)

Sanadhil and Phedre

  • Sanadhil wound have been taking casual notice of where she and Earric have been of and on throughout the evening
  • Phedre dances with a variety of gentlemen, moreso than her husband, who only dances occasionally.
  • Sanadhil will cast DM surreptitiously on her necklace at some point
Narrator: It's magic.
  • Sanadhil also wished he knew moe about who was who here :p
Sanadhil: (shocking! Cna I tell what kind?)
Narrator: (you can make a spellcraft check to know_
Sanadhil: (14 :/)
Narrator: (insufficient, I'm afraid - but the magic is strong, you can tell that much.)
Sanadhil: (Cna i try again?)
Narrator: (sure, I guess - someone may notice you standing there casting spells, but hey :)
Sanadhil: (I could wait a bit, I'm patient ;x)
Narrator: heh
Narrator: go ahead and roll, then
Sanadhil: (feh, 13 - not meant to be.)
Narrator: (nope)
Sanadhil: . o ( another time.... )
  • Sanadhil will see about approaching her somewhere more quiet later on then
  • Phedre eventually takes a rest in one of the drawing rooms - you could encounter her there.
  • Sanadhil will grab a glass of wine and casually wander in a litlwe while afterwards
  • Phedre smiles to see you.
Sanadhil: (are there many poeple here?)
  • Sanadhil smiles in return
Sanadhil: Good evening madam.
Narrator: (probably a dozen or so, but mostly engaged in their own conversations.)
Sanadhil: (:*nod:*)
Phedre: M. Orecalo, what a pleasant surprise
  • Phedre offers you her hand.
  • Sanadhil will take and kiss it gallantly
Sanadhil: You look enchanting this evening, if I may say
Phedre: Why, thank you :)
  • Phedre is slightly flushed from dancing.
Phedre: What brings you here this evening?
Sanadhil: Ahh, I was invited to attend Miss de Quessenet.
Sanadhil: Apparently her parents think I'm non-threatening
  • Phedre chuckles at that.
  • Sanadhil smiles as well
Phedre: How charming. And so you get the opportunity to observe us go through these peculiar motions ;)
Sanadhil: It's its own sort of ritual, I suppose.
Sanadhil: YOu seem to be enjoying yourself
  • Phedre nods.
Phedre: Oh, it's a lovely evening. It was unfortunate my daughters had to leave, I should have liked to introduce them to you.
Sanadhil: daughters? I can scarcely believe it ;)
  • Phedre looks amused.
Phedre: Come, M. Orecalo, you are young enough to be my son ;)
Sanadhil: I'm older than I look.
Phedre: As am I ;)
Sanadhil: what's a few years between friends?
Phedre: Why, nothing, to be sure.
  • Phedre slides over to allow you space to sit beside her if you wish.
  • Sanadhil does so
Phedre: And are you enjoying yourself this evening?
Sanadhil: I am, yes - I hope I don't sound too parochial, but Ive never been to anything like this
Phedre: There are very few events like this, it's not surprising ;)
Phedre: One might hope there will be more now, with a handsome young Emperor on the throne.
Sanadhil: It's possible, though I may not always be so position to receive a fortuitous nvitations
Sanadhil: I'll just have to enjoy the evening for what it is
  • Phedre nods.
Phedre: That is probably the best strategy :)
Sanadhil: You must be more familiar with this sort of affair.... what more might there be to come for the rest of the evening?
Sanadhil: More endless waltzing?
Phedre: Well, yes. Eventually, I am given to understand there will be fireworks, out above the gardens.
Phedre: But people will begin depart as they grow weary.
  • Sanadhil nods
Sanadhil: I'm not sure how long I should be expecting to stay... I should probably take the opportunity to see the grounds at some point
Phedre: Oh, have you not seen them? Even in the dark, they are quite lovely.
Sanadhil: I haven't.... I don't suppose I could impose on you to show me around?
Sanadhil: I wouldn't want to miss anything
  • Phedre smiles from under lowered eyelids.
Phedre: I suppose I could take a turn about the gardens.
  • Phedre takes your arm, then.
  • Sanadhil will rise and try to remember where the exits are o_O
  • Phedre guides you out to the moonlit terrace and down the marble steps into the gardens below.
  • Phedre makes small talk, compliments you on your clothing, etc.
  • Sanadhil will be charming as possible
Sanadhil: (without, say, actually casting charm :x)
Narrator: (lol)
Sanadhil: This is a lovely setting - the stars are quite clear here too
  • Phedre looks up.
Phedre: Yes, it's a very clear night.
Phedre: The fireworks later on should be amazing.
Sanadhil: Ahh, well, I may be biased.
Phedre: Oh?
Sanadhil: The emperor celebrated some major anniversary when I was younger
Sanadhil: I forgetwhich, now, but there were some exceedingly impressive displays
Phedre: What a sight that must have been.
  • Sanadhil shrugs
Phedre: We shall have to see if our own meagre efforts can compare :)
Sanadhil: I'm sure hey will be perfectly lovely.
  • Sanadhil smiles
Phedre: I hope we don't disappoint you.
Sanadhil: The evening's been going so well... I can't imagine that could be the case.
Sanadhil: Especially with such lob=vely company
Sanadhil: (lovely)
  • Phedre looks flattered.
Phedre: My husband will probably be wondering where I've gotten to.
Sanadhil: will he?
Phedre: Perhaps.
Sanadhil: I'm sure it won't do him any harm
  • Phedre laughs.
Sanadhil: :)
Phedre: No, I'm sure it won't.
Sanadhil: You truely are a fascinating woman....
Phedre: And you are an enigma.
Phedre: But, yes, a fascinating one.
Sanadhil: I don't think I'm so myseterious, am I?
Phedre: Well, perhaps if I learn more about you, you will cease to fascinate me ;)
Sanadhil: That would be a shame! I shall try to keep some of my secrets, then
Phedre: That is always a good strategy ;)
  • Phedre teases a lock of your hair back behind your ear.
  • Sanadhil will not try too hard to pretend not to like that
  • Sanadhil steps closer to her
  • Phedre doesn't move away.
Sanadhil: We could share a few secrets, though?
Sanadhil: Between friends?
Phedre: Such as?
  • Sanadhil will kiss her
  • Phedre gasps against your mouth.
Sanadhil: (happy, surprised, or other?)
Phedre: (surprised, maybe, not unhappy - aroused, possibly)
Phedre: Goodness, you are bold.
Sanadhil: Too bold?
  • Sanadhil will put his arms around her waist
Phedre: Not at all.
  • Phedre leans against you, giving you a good view of her cleavage.
Sanadhil: I was hoping you'd say that
  • Sanadhil gives her an unabasedly admiring look
Phedre: But you must know, I can't do anything ...serious... without my husband present ;)
Sanadhil: ahh....
Phedre: He feels left out, you see.
Phedre: And I would hate for him to be unhappy.
  • Phedre caresses your neck.
Sanadhil: . o ( well, that answers that )
Phedre: But I very much doubt he would object to you ;)
Sanadhil: I see...
Phedre: Oh, I've disappointed you.
Sanadhil: A little
  • Sanadhil admits
Phedre: Well, I didn't say I couldn't do :*anything:* ;)
  • Phedre slides one hand down your chest.
  • Phedre keeps going...
Phedre: Mmm, very nice...
Sanadhil: Ahh, I'm sure we can have a perfectly lovely time
  • Phedre nods.
Phedre: Let's see, shall we?
  • Sanadhil nods and will kiss her again, and see just how far she :*will:* take things :o
  • Phedre is quite willing to play along.

Dominik and Laurine

  • Laurine is walking in the garden with you.
  • Dominik breathes deep the night air
Dominik: So refreshing
Laurine: It's warm in there, isn't it.
Dominik: Yes. I find it so hard to believe such a large room can seem so confining
Laurine: Well, there are hundreds of people in it, that helps ;)
Dominik: I suppose
Dominik: Really I think there are hundreds of people, most with egoes the size of thousands of people
  • Laurine laughs.
Laurine: Maybe that's the problem.
Dominik: Too much importance bumping into eachother causing friction
  • Laurine nods.
Laurine: People get a little hot-headed.
Dominik: You seemed a little flushed yourself. Everything alright?
Laurine: Oh, I'm fine. My family just make me angry sometimes.
Dominik: Family...
  • Dominik has a bitter laugh
Dominik: I wish my family only made me angry
Dominik: sometimes
Laurine: Oh, I'm sure they must sometimes ;)
Dominik: more like all the time... but I don't want to dwell on that.
Dominik: I'm not hear to be reminded of being angry
Laurine: Sorry :/
  • Dominik smiles and looks at Laurine
Dominik: No appologies necessary... just being here makes me forget.
  • Laurine smiles back, then.
Dominik: Some might not like you being out here with me... your family. I don't have an especially great reputation.
  • Laurine shrugs.
Laurine: I can take care of myself ;)
Dominik: I've seen that personally
Laurine: If you give me any trouble, I'll have my brother and Uncle Halden beat you up ;)
Dominik: Two on one is not very fair ;)
Laurine: Well, I'm sure Uncle Halden could handle it on his own, but Roderick would insist on coming too ;)
Dominik: That leaves me with three on one... since I doubt you would let me off so lightly. I guess I have to watch myself.
Laurine: Maybe you'd better ;)
  • Laurine teases.
  • Dominik will slip an arm around Laurine's waist
Dominik: Your uncle always criticized me for being a little reckless
  • Laurine nods.
Laurine: You do move fast.
Dominik: In the dance of life, sometimes agility is needed and speed.
  • Dominik turns to face her
Dominik: Don't you agree?
Laurine: I can't really disagree...
  • Dominik will lean in to kiss her
  • Laurine lets you, for a moment, but then pulls back slightly.
Laurine: Dom, I don't know...
  • Dominik doesnt press
Laurine: It's not that I don't like you.
Laurine: Because I do.
Laurine: It's just...
  • Laurine sighs.
Dominik: Who am I...
Laurine: I know we couldn't really be together. Because of the House thing... :/
  • Dominik pulls away
Dominik: Don't you see that doesnt matter to me.
Laurine: It doesn't matter to me either.
Dominik: Halden knows what I've been through... I'm not sure if you do
Laurine: Maybe I don't. Explain it to me, then.
Dominik: I don't want your pity... understand.
  • Laurine nods.
Dominik: I consider you a good friend...
Dominik: someone I can let myself be me... at least a part of who I am
Dominik: I'm a bastard... not just any bastard.
Dominik: a houseless bastard. My father was not Wolf.
Laurine: ...Oh.
Laurine: I'm sorry. I didn't know.
Dominik: Its not common knowledge.
Dominik: Halden knows
  • Laurine nods.
  • Dominik turns to her
Dominik: What do you think of your Dominik now?
Laurine: I ... I know you said you didn't want pity. But I do feel bad for you. It must be awful sometimes.
Laurine: People are such idiots about that sort of thing.
Dominik: I would never wish the life I had growing up on anyone.
Dominik: I am strong regardless.
Dominik: It has made me who I am... for good or bad.
  • Laurine nods.
Laurine: I respect you. I mean, I did before, but...
  • Laurine kisses you again.
  • Dominik kisses her back
  • Laurine wraps her arms around you.
Dominik: You stayed after all I said...
Laurine: Well, I thought before that you wanted this to be something serious. I don't know.
Laurine: If it's just for fun...
  • Laurine looks up at you to see if you have any answers to her confusion.
Dominik: There is a spark between us. I feel it.
Laurine: Will things still be the same, though?
Dominik: We can't go back to the way things were. Even now too much has happened.
Laurine: I just don't want you acting all weird at the yard.
Dominik: Like this is gonna stop me from kicking your ass.
  • Laurine smiles at that.
  • Laurine looks a bit embarassed, though.
Laurine: Dom, I've never... um. Done this before.
Dominik: There must be some broken hearts in your past then.
  • Laurine shakes her head.
Laurine: No... I'm not pretty enough to break hearts unless it's with a sword.
  • Laurine says matter-of-factly.
Dominik: Its not my fault if their all foolish enough to not recoginize true beauty.
Laurine: Pft. You don't have to lie to me ;)
Dominik: It takes a strength of will and form to master the blade. We both know that and both know it is beauty to do so.
Laurine: So you want me to fight you? ;)
Dominik: Only when you feel it is required.
  • Dominik will kiss her
  • Laurine pushes herself against you, hard.
  • Dominik stands firm in his embrace
Laurine: You want me? Truly?
  • Laurine still seems sort of surprised by the idea.
Dominik: Want? Yes. Truly? Yes. Respect? Yes. Consider a true friend? Yes. If not, why would I be here?
Laurine: Well, you could love me, I suppose.
Laurine: But it's all right if you don't. It's less complicated.
Laurine: That's what I've heard, anyway.
Dominik: I'm not going to say I love you right now since I don't know if that is true. You deserve my honesty. I am willing to see where this may go, if you are willing.
Laurine: That's fine with me.
  • Laurine looks a bit relieved, honestly.
Dominik: Lets just enjoy us then
  • Laurine nods slowly.
Dominik: What doubt do you have?
Laurine: I don't, not really. It's just... the grass is kind of wet. I might ruin this stupid gown.
Dominik: we don't have to stay here do we? We've done our family duty.
Laurine: Where would we go?
Dominik: I'm sure we could find somewhere... an inn?
Laurine: Can we go somewhere disreputable? ;)
Laurine: Not dirty, just... not too nice. ^-^
Dominik: I don't see why not.
  • Dominik chuckles
Laurine: Okay. I'll tell Lygia I'm leaving, and she'll cover for me. Her parents won't notice I'm not staying at their house tonight anyway :p
Dominik: If someone gives us trouble, we can beat them till they wished the guard showed up :)
  • Laurine laughs.
Dominik: I'm sure if I slipped away quietly my family would be happy beyond belief.
Laurine: All right.
  • Laurine will go locate her cousin, then, to concoct a plausible lie ;)
  • Laurine will then meet you outside so you can go fuck her senseless at a disreputable inn ;)
Dominik: (lol)

Solos

Alma and Ysabeau

[Alma] Potentially in a side room when I'm hiding from a dance?

[Alma] It'll mostly be chatty, not plotty, I imagine? :P

[Ysabeau] (maybe after Altheo and I spoke, and before the drunk molested me)

  • Ysabeau is looking pensive.
  • Alma is dressed in her ball finery, which involves an expensive-looking fashionable dress which seems to be trying to squeeze Alma's cleavage out. Her skin is quite rosy from dancing and wine.
  • Alma sneaks from the main room into this side study and spots a seat near you.
  • Ysabeau is in her best dress of midnight blue, and with tiny white flowers in her hair.

[Alma] Good evening Mlle Chanuier, is this seat taken?

[Ysabeau] Not at the moment, Sister. :)

[Alma] Then I lay claim...

  • Alma fights with her dress for a moment before sitting down, her virgin drink in hand.

[Ysabeau] You likely have more claim to chairs in this building than I.

  • Ysabeau shrugs, looking amused.

[Alma] Few in the Empire aren't guests in this house :)

[Ysabeau] But most here have some degree of noble blood.

[Ysabeau] I'm just a tradesman's daughter. :)

[Alma] Ah, but you get to say you earned your evening here :) I saw you performing earlier, in a quartet? I was too harried to listen long, but it sounded good.

[Ysabeau] Thank you. We're The Vallon Consort.

[Alma] I hope to catch you perform again sometime, when I can pay proper attention.

[Ysabeau] We have a fairly wide repertoire, if you ever need to hire some musicians; we'd be happy to play for you pretty well anything you requested.

[Alma] certainly ;)

[Alma] I think I recognised one of your members, is he from the Society as well?

  • Ysabeau nods.
  • Alma looks to remember his name.

[Ysabeau] Symon Tourigny - we like to play ancient music. Symon and I are the ones who usually dig it up, with some help from Verity Arguelles at times.

[Ysabeau] Jehan and Stefan are the other two members. Jehan is a composer, so we play some original pieces as well.

[Ysabeau] But of course any musical group’s bread and potatoes are the current popular pieces so we're well-versed in those as well.

[Alma] Ah, Symon.

[Alma] Verity Arguelles is the wife of Adam Kolbe, no?

  • Ysabeau nods.

[Ysabeau] She's a talented musician, too. :)

[Ysabeau] She actually helped us get this gig tonight; we're lucky to call her our friend.

  • Ysabeau seems to be really very fond of Verity Arguelles when she speaks of her. ;)

[Ysabeau] But I must be boring you with all this talk of music! My apologies; I get carried away when someone gets me going on the things I'm passionate about.

[Alma] I can imagine this is a great opportunity for an emerging group such as yourselves...

  • Ysabeau nods enthusiastically.

[Ysabeau] We really hope it will land us a few more gigs.

  • Ysabeau agrees.

[Alma] And as for the topic, why spend so much time with so many people just to monopolise the topics myself? :)

[Ysabeau] I suppose. It would be difficult to learn anything if we didn't ask questions and listen to others.

[Alma] I haven't had the opportunity to speak with Verity Arguelles properly yet at the Society. I've met her in passing a few times, but I've been bustling about. Perhaps I'll catch you both sometime visiting the library.

[Alma] I'm good friends with an... aunt of hers, Sister Beatrix Arguelles.

[Ysabeau] Oh yeah?

  • Alma looks unsure as to the *exact* relation.

[Alma] They're a large family :)

  • Ysabeau nods.

[Alma] (At least it seems :P)

[Ysabeau] I don't really know her family, so much.

[Alma] (Would Verity have been here?)

[Ysabeau] (She was, yes, with Adam Kolbe)

[Ysabeau] Anyway, Verity attends most all the meetings, so you ought to pin her down at the next one.

[Alma] There were a few here this evening, including Sister Beatrix, though I believe she's retired for the evening.

[Ysabeau] No doubt... pretty well every noble in the Empire must be here. I've never seen so many glittering dresses in one place, ever.

[Ysabeau] I don't often see this many people in one place, either - except maybe for the market days.

[Alma] Each and every one uncomfortable -_-

  • Ysabeau laughs.

[Ysabeau] Not just your gowns... we poorer folk do our best to mimic you so I'm stuck wearing a corset and hoops, too.

[Ysabeau] Just the fabric isn't as fine, and not so much lace, and no jewels. And only humble flowers.

  • Ysabeau pats the baby's breath in her hair self-consciously to make sure it's still there.

[Alma] The flowers are a nice touch though :)

  • Alma seems to have left out a lot of those "extra touches"
  • Ysabeau blushes prettily.

[Ysabeau] Thank you.

[Ysabeau] I'd feel weird with orchids, anyway.

[Alma] They'd be rather large in your hair :P

[Ysabeau] I saw more than a few out there, though.

  • Ysabeau smiles.

[Alma] So much bother for one night...

  • Ysabeau shrugs.
  • Alma fans herself idly.

[Ysabeau] It's an important night for your folk. A new era, new possibilities. Marriages to arrange, plots to develop.

  • Alma seems to sigh inwardly when you mention marriages.

[Alma] Very true. In all honesty if it wasn't for appearances, I would sooner be at home reading.

[Ysabeau] It matters for us, too, but less so... our lives go on mostly unchanged, unless the new Emperor decides to go to war or something. The Seven prevent that from happening, though!

  • Ysabeau makes the sign of the Wheel to ward away any sort of nastiness.
  • Alma nods, her hand going to her holy symbol.

[Alma] Hopefully nothing will change that :)

  • Ysabeau nods.

[Ysabeau] How late do you have to stay, if you'd rather be home?

  • Ysabeau asks curiously

[Alma] Not much later, I imagine. I've met and danced with quite a few people this evening. Should it seem like the crowd have bored of me, I will try to escape :)

  • Ysabeau smiles.

[Ysabeau] I'm not sure how much longer I ought to stay. I doubt anyone would try to engage our quartet tonight... if they want us they could send a message some other time and they're probably too busy socializing to think about their own parties right now, anyway.

[Ysabeau] So there probably isn't really much purpose to my staying.

[Ysabeau] I suppose I should try to drum up a little business, though... maybe have a few more dances and drop our consort's name into the conversation.

[Ysabeau] I wonder how the lads are doing?

[Ysabeau] Symon wasn't very excited about doing public relations and I'm afraid I've been rather lax in my duties.

[Alma] I do imagine most people will try to find out later who they saw performing, but it might not be inappropriate to play later in the evening? I have seen games being played before, and other late-night entertainment?

[Ysabeau] Well, we were only engaged to play two sets at the beginning.

[Ysabeau] I'm sure that the master of ceremonies would have made arrangements for other groups to play later in the night.

[Ysabeau] He had quite a full roster of musicians.

[Alma] Ah, well...

[Alma] It has been nice to see you again, Mlle. Chanuier, but I think I'd best throw myself back into the frey :)

[Ysabeau] Very well. Hopefully you can extricate yourself soon without causing a stir, and go back to your home and curl up with a good book!

[Ysabeau] It was a pleasure speaking with you, Sister.

[Alma] I will be far too tired this evening for that sort of thing, but I look forward to a very good sleep :) Enjoy the rest of your night :)

  • Ysabeau stands up politely to see you off, smiling.

[Ysabeau] Thank you, I shall certainly try.

  • Alma adjusts her dress and heads back out onto the dancefloor ot hobnob.


Ysabeau and Sanadhil

  • Ysabeau re-enters the ballroom after the fireworks
  • Sanadhil trickles back in and, looking to spot ilphere, sees Ysabeau instead
  • Sanadhil will drift that way

[Sanadhil] Good evening Miss Chaunier

  • Ysabeau is looking pretty as always and turning on her charm to lure people into dances so she can sell her quartet. ;)
  • Ysabeau turns to you and curtseys, smiling.

[Ysabeau] Good evening, Master Orecalo.

[Sanadhil] How are you this evening?

[Ysabeau] Well enough, and you?

[Sanadhil] Quite well, thank you.

[Sanadhil] That was a lovely display, wasn't it?

  • Ysabeau nods enthusiastically.

[Ysabeau] I've never been able to see them so close before!

[Ysabeau] They were always pretty far away from - me. I never heard the screaming ones before. It's almost like magic, isn't it?

  • Ysabeau bubbles.

[Sanadhil] I suppose so!

[Sanadhil] I've sen displays back hope that incorporate some elements of illusion spells.

[Ysabeau] Really?

[Ysabeau] What did they use the illusions for?

[Sanadhil] Cozovodë wizards are more versitile in their magic, they can afford spells for that kind of indulgence :)

[Sanadhil] to enhance colours, add sounds, sometimes create animation effects

[Ysabeau] Animation effects? Like, firework unicorns running across the sky or something?

[Sanadhil] sometimes they are very blatant, but i find the subtler effects more engagng - they detract less rom the art of the fireworks themselves

[Sanadhil] that sort of thing, yes

[Ysabeau] Wow, that must be fascinating to see.

  • Sanadhil nods

[Sanadhil] still, I was curious to see what the empreor would pull out, and was not disappointed :)

[Sanadhil] I don't suppose you have see mlle. de Quessenet around?

[Ysabeau] I'm afraid not... not since I saw her dancing with the Prince Imperial.

[Sanadhil] hmm...

[Ysabeau] They make a lovely couple, don't they? I hope things work out for her.

[Sanadhil] well, would you care to dance the, as the music seems to be srnking up once more?

[Sanadhil] (Striking)

[Sanadhil] I wish her the very best

  • Sanadhil says sincerely
  • Ysabeau smiles.

[Ysabeau] I'd be happy to dance with you.

[Sanadhil] then i wold be honoured :)

  • Ysabeau smiles brightly and takes up the appropriate position for a lady.

[Ysabeau] You came with Ilphere, right? I think she mentioned something about that.

  • Sanadhil nods

[Sanadhil] I had that honour also, yes

  • Sanadhil will take up boy stance

[Sanadhil] hmm... I'm still learning these dances, so forgive me if I'm lacking in grace.

[Sanadhil] It's been a very educational evening in that regard

[Ysabeau] We're well-matched then... I've never had much opportunity to practice these, myself.

  • Ysabeau is not a practiced dancer but she is pretty graceful.
  • Sanadhil is in the same boat, essentially

[Sanadhil] well, we'll have to wing it then

[Ysabeau] I put all of my creative endeavours into music and singing, and neglected the dancing part.

[Ysabeau] I don't know how often I'll be able to dance after playing my music; if it happens often enough maybe I'll have to look into some lessons. :)

[Sanadhil] I can't say i've ever had any talents in that realm.

[Sanadhil] not much opportunity for it, i suppose

  • Sanadhil muses
  • Ysabeau smiles.

[Ysabeau] Well, if you'd ever like to learn to play a stringed instrument, I'd be happy to teach you.

[Ysabeau] I could train your voice, too, if you have anything decent to start with. ;)

[Sanadhil] someday, perhaps!

[Sanadhil] I'm starting to wonder if I'm not being overly ambitious with al my current projects

[Ysabeau] Oh, I know the feeling.

[Ysabeau] :/

[Sanadhil] you must be nearly finishd your studies by now?

[Ysabeau] I haven't made much headway with my research on the stone and the necklace yet. We got this gig and we had to practice for it, so I'm afraid most everything else got dropped by the wayside.

[Sanadhil] ahh yes, I was speaking to M. Argo about that earlier

[Ysabeau] Oh, really?

[Sanadhil] I'd ment to ask, but after the fireworks it completely slipped my mind

[Ysabeau] Has he had any better luck?

[Sanadhil] no, I think he's been busy with his own family affairs

[Sanadhil] Apparently the Argos have some longstanding relationship with the Kizers

[Ysabeau] Is that so? I guess he must be really busy running errands for them right now, then.

  • Sanadhil shrugs

[Sanadhil] i didn't enquire about the speific details

[Ysabeau] No, of course not.

[Sanadhil] He does seem to think the investigation is worth pursuing

[Ysabeau] Really?

  • Sanadhil nods
  • Ysabeau looks rather gratified.

[Ysabeau] I hope to have more time to spend on it once this night is over.

[Sanadhil] if yo do turn up anything of interest, i am certian he'd be very interestd to hear it

  • Sanadhil nods

[Ysabeau] I promised I'd share whatever I learn with him already. :)

[Sanadhil] Well, then!

  • Sanadhil glances over your shoulder

[Sanadhil] ahh, there she is....

[Ysabeau] Oh...

  • Ysabeau smiles and releases you to Ilphere, then.
  • Sanadhil bows

[Sanadhil] Thank you for the dance, Miss Chaunier, I hope you enjoy the rest of your time here

[Ysabeau] Thank you, Master Orecalo

[Ysabeau] I hope you enjoy the rest of your evening, too. :)

  • Ysabeau curtseys
  • Sanadhil will go find Ilphère, and probably leave shortly afterwards