Diablotin 3 session 23

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Diablotin 3 session logs
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Summary

Session

Session date: October 25, 2015
Diablotin date: End of Second-month

Prologue

<DiablotinNarrator> It's the end of Second-month, and the weather continues to be frigidly cold without the relief of a thaw. Some of the tabloids ascribe the weather to the mysterious fey rider who is sometimes spotted roaming the city's streets, and blame the city's guards for being unable to capture this eerie invader.

Dorien meets Misery's father

<DiablotinNarrator> Dorien, Misery wants to go and talk to her father about the situation with Puce, and, more worryingly, to bring you with her.

<Dorien> (Eep)

<Misery> He's not that bad! He isn't going to beat you up or something.

<Misery> ... probably.

<Dorien> I don't know... are you sure it's a good idea? I mean even if her doesn't kill me...

<Dorien> It's still not the best circumstances to meet under

<Misery> But you know more about Puce, you've been dealing with him longer.

<Dorien> You're... not going to leave me alone with him, are you?

<Misery> No!

<Misery> Of course not :p

<Dorien> ...ok. You better not -_-

  • Dorien squeezes Misery's hand.
  • Misery squeezes back
  • Misery will take you to a gym in one of the shadier parts of the Shade. From the outside it mostly looks like a warehouse.

<Dorien> That's not ominous.

<Misery> Well, he didn't spend the money on decor.

<Dorien> I have the distinct impression that he would have no shortage of hiding spots for my body.

<Misery> >.>

<Misery> You're skinny, you'd fold up really well.

<Dorien> Har har.

  • Misery leads you inside

<DiablotinNarrator> Inside, there is the echoing sound of flesh colliding with wood, leather, other flesh, punctuated with occasional yells, whether of pain or encouragement or both.

<DiablotinNarrator> A mix of Shadar-kai and human, though mostly Shadar-kai, are training with punching bags, dummies, and one another.

  • Dorien will follow warily, trying not to make too much eye contact with anyone, but not look like he's not trying to either. He will likely fail at both.
  • Denise waves :D

<Dorien> o.O

<Dorien> Den?

  • Denise is striped to the waist, with fabric wound around her chest, looking pretty sweaty
  • Misery will leave you with Denise for a moment while she goes to get her father's attention. it doesn't count as leaving you alone *with him* >.>

<Denise> Hey Dorien :3

<Dorien> Hey kid! What are you doing here?

<Denise> trainin'!

<Dorien> Well... I mean other than the obvious

<Denise> what're you doin' here? Meetin' with Syrez?

<Dorien> No kidding

<Denise> finally meetin' her dad, then? ^-^

<Dorien> ...yeah. So you know the guy?

<Denise> well, eayh, I been trainin' with him for a while now

<Dorien> Is he... how scared should I be?

  • Denise has a scar on one shoulder that is covered wth a shadar-kai-style tattoo

<Denise> I dunno... depends on if Miz likes you maybe?

  • Denise teases

<Dorien> I hope she does :P

<Denise> From what Argent's been complainin' about, it sure seems like ^-^

<Dorien> You're too young to listen to Argent's stories about me.

<Denise> pfft, whatever ;p

<Denise> anyway I gotta get back to trainin' or I'm gonna get my ass kicked

  • Dorien elboys Denise affectionately

<Dorien> Sure thing, sorry to bug you. By the way, I like your ink. Looks good on you.

<Denise> thanks :3

  • Dorien will step back and let her get back to beating the tar out of a bag or whatever she is doing
  • Misery will return with a man who is presumably her father
  • Syrez is tall, with short-cropped dark grey hair, and since he has his shirt off it's easy to tell he's quite muscular, and has a number of scars that don't look like the artistically-applied type.

<Dorien> Hello... sir.

<Misery> Dorien, this is Syrez Rhlandar. My father.

  • Syrez nods curtly

<Dorien> It's a pleasure to meet you.

  • Dorien tries hard not to be nervous.
  • Syrez looks you up and down

<Syrez> What brings you here?

<Dorien> Well... Misery thought it would be a good idea for us to come talk to you. She thinks maybe you can help us.

<Misery> We have some problems we need help dealing with.

<Misery> Well, one specific problem.

<Dorien> One specific, red haired, weasly problem.

<Syrez> o_O

<Dorien> ummm... sorry. I meant Puce.

<Syrez> All right, come on, we'll go to my office and talk.

  • Syrez will lead you to a little tiny office that the three of you can cram into.
  • Dorien will be on his best manners
  • Syrez turns to his daughter once the door is closed

<Syrez> What the *fuck* are you doing, getting mixed up with someone like Puce?

<Misery> Well I didn't have much choice.

  • Dorien will shut right the fuck up for now.

<Misery> Unless you'd rather I was coming to you because I got pregnant or caught some gross disease off a john, because that was the next best option.

  • Syrez frowns, looking confused and/or angry and/or both

<Syrez> It can't be as bad as all that...

<Misery> What do you even know? Like you're around!

  • Dorien will open his mouth briefly and then decide better of it.
  • Syrez thins his lips

<Syrez> All right. Tell me what the problem is. I can talk to your mother about .... this... later.

<Dorien> (I assume between the two of us we can relate the general shape of the problem)

<Misery> Puce set me up with Dorien to train me. With the idea that Dorien was going to get out of the job, once I was ready.

<Misery> But now Puce just wants double the product instead.

<Dorien> I mean... I wasn't going to abandon her or anything...

<Dorien> I mean...

<Misery> Shh.

<Dorien> Yes Ma'am.

  • Syrez can't help a slight smirk at that.

<Misery> Dorien and I are ... trying to make things work together. And I think we can.

  • Misery says with a glance at you
  • Dorien clears his throat

<Misery> But with this hanging over our heads, we don't have a chance.

<Misery> We thought you might know... who we should talk to, or where we can go, to try and get this dealt with.

<Syrez> If I help with this, what are you going to do? Set up some independent drug-dealing business?

<Misery> No, I'm pretty sure that would be a terrible idea.

<Dorien> We're trying to go legit.

  • Misery says, looking to you for confirmation

<Dorien> Both of us.

  • Syrez sighs

<Syrez> So getting you in further with the Nhau'kel probably isn't what you're after.

<Dorien> I got her a job. An apprenticeship....

<Dorien> Not really, no.

  • Syrez nods

<Syrez> Getting out is harder than getting in.

<Dorien> So we've learned.

<Syrez> But I'll see what I can do.

<Syrez> I can talk to Tilkiira, for starters.

  • Dorien will raise an eyebrow questioningly at Misery.
  • Misery sort of makes a little 'ugh, I suppose if you have to' face, but nods.

<Syrez> I'll see what she has to say, and then get back to you. And I'll have a word with your mother as well.

<Misery> It isn't her fault...

<Syrez> Mm.

  • Syrez makes a noncommittal grunt :p

<Syrez> Meanwhile, just try and keep your heads down and do your jobs.

  • Dorien will nod

<Syrez> Don't piss anyone else off.

  • Syrez says, strongly suggesting that HE is pissed off

<Misery> All right

<Syrez> <sk> And why couldn't you at least pick someone who looks like he can protect you?

<Misery> <sk> Dad, he makes bombs. I'll be fine.

<Syrez> o_O

  • Misery will extricate us from this tiny office, then

<Dorien> Thank you, sir.

<Syrez> Mm. Don't thank me until this is sorted out.

  • Syrez goes back to training, with rather more vigor than before :p

<Dorien> And for what it's worth... <sk> I don't think your daughter needs my help protecting herself.

<Syrez> >.>

  • Dorien will take Misery's arm and leave.

Denise and Hettie attend a Murodea family dinner

<DiablotinNarrator> Denise and Hettie, while Serge-Yves is in town, he has pushed for a big Murodea family dinner, so that he has a chance to see everyone.

<DiablotinNarrator> The only house big enough to have a chance of accommodating everyone is Patric and Elcina's place, and even then, there will be people eating in the sitting room.

<DiablotinNarrator> Everyone will bring some food to contribute, which makes for a somewhat disjointed, but copious, meal.

  • Denise will bring a pie :3

<DiablotinNarrator> (and a boyfriend? :)

<Denise> (yes him too :3 If he has to bring a food I can make something else to go with >.>)

  • Enver can bring some wine that he got from somewhere >.>

<Denise> (that works ^-^)

  • Serge-Yves is the guest of honour, with everyone wanting to talk to him and hear about his travels

<Enver> Should I say something to your da?

  • Enver asks surreptitiously

<Denise> mmmmmm >.>

  • Hettienne grumps.

<Hettienne> Ugh.

<Denise> Lets wait 'til he's with ma and then I'll take you over

<Enver> 'kay

  • Denise answers quietly
  • Thierry and Rosalie are there with baby Avionne, who is also the star of the show
  • Corbin will mostly hang out quietly in the corner, watching
  • Elcina sits in her usual chair - she's more alert than usual, maybe she skipped her tea for the occasion.
  • Alain and Mikel chat about their plans for their apartment :D

<Denise> (VICTORY!)

  • Yvonne will show off her latest tests from school, and her kitty :)

<Denise> (Did Mikel bring his boy?)

<DiablotinNarrator> (he did not)

  • Alain will talk to Hettie when he gets a chance (where is she lurking?)

<Hettienne> (somewhere away from Patric)

<Alain> Hey, Hettie... how're you doin?

  • Hettienne smiles.

<Hettienne> Aw, I'm doin' fine, Alain... How're you?

  • Alain says once he finds you in the hallway ;)

<Alain> Actually, pretty good.

<Hettienne> I heard you an Mik makin' plans... Glad that's workin' out.

<Alain> Yeah, it'll be nice havin' someone around.

<Alain> An'... I dunno if she told you, but I had a couple dates so far with Flavia.

  • Alain says, looking more embarrassed

<Hettienne> No she didn't!! :D

<Hettienne> Good boy :D

<Alain> She's a real nice girl.

  • Hettienne nods.

<Alain> ... but I don't quite dare bring her here yet.

<Hettienne> She better be... or she'll have t'asnwer to me :v

<Hettienne> Oh, I feel ya. >.>

<Hettienne> (answer)

<Alain> Just, 'cause she ain't a Rat, I worry that maybe some folks ain't gonna be so welcoming, you know?

<Hettienne> Yeah... some folks. :|

<Alain> ... Serge-Yves told me you an' Nycki were seein' each other again >.>

<Hettienne> ah, hehe, yeah. <.<

<Hettienne> THat didn't take long.

<Alain> yeah, well... news gets around.

  • Hettienne glances in S-Y's direction.

<Alain> Oh, speakin' of news, we got our first issue of the new paper out next week :)

<Hettienne> Aw, swell!

<Alain> Yeah... well, we'll see.

<Hettienne> I'm sure it'll be tops :3

<Alain> It'll be good to have somethin' for our people. Mostly in Rat, even.

<Hettienne> I can't wait t' read it!

<Alain> I'll make sure you get a copy :)

<Alain> Or even a bunch, if you wanna leave them out in the green room at the club.

<Hettienne> Yeah, sure! There's a bunch of us there.

  • Alain nods
  • Hettienne lowers her voice a little. So... who all did Serge-Yves tell?

<Hettienne> Am I gonna get Patric'd? :|

<Alain> Me, an' Thierry... so ... probably most everyone knows by now?

<Hettienne> Ah, shit.

<Alain> But Patric oughta know better than to pull any shit here...

  • Alain says, not entirely optimistically

<Hettienne> It's just like old times :|

<Patric> yeah...

<Patric> (er, ww)

<Alain> yeah...

<Alain> Look, as long as you're happy, I don't care 'bout what went on in the past. I just hope she's good for you in the future.

<Hettienne> Thanks Alain... I 'preciate that.

  • Hettienne smiles sincerely.

<Alain> Yeah, well, life's too short to hold grudges.

<Hettienne> We're really tryin', both of us

<Hettienne> Yeah.

  • Hettienne reaches out and gives his shoulder a squeeze.
  • Patric hugs you

<Patric> (aaaa)

  • Alain hugs you
  • Hettienne hugs back
  • Yvonne is going to pester Denise with all sorts of questions, since she doesn't see her too often these days

<Denise> :3

  • Denise has a lot more patience for it, for similar reasons
  • Yvonne is also very curious about Enver ^-^

<Yvonne> Is he your boyfriend?

  • Denise will introduce him of course, though they did at least meet briefly on Rat Day

<Denise> un huh :3

<Yvonne> Are you gonna get married?

<Denise> uh

<Denise> like

<Denise> we ain't talked about nothin' like that....

<Denise> @_@

<Denise> (is he here? >.>)

  • Enver is nearby, but involved in talking with Mikel

<Denise> I don't wanna get into all of that too young, I think

<Yvonne> If you get married, do I get to be the bridesmaid?

<Denise> well yeah :D

<Yvonne> :D

<Denise> I only got one sister :3

  • Yvonne claps her hands excitedly

<Denise> but like

<Denise> ain't gonna been anytime soon ;p

<Mikel> What's all that about? You didn't promise her another kitty or somethin', did you?

<Denise> no :p

<Denise> just.... girl things ;p

<Yvonne> she said I can be her bridesmaid when she gets married!

<Denise> -_-

<Denise> Like, whenever that is :p

<Enver> Well, sure - you're her sister. But that's a long time off.

  • Enver says, with a smile to Denise
  • Denise says, looking neervouds and then a little relieved when he speaks up

<Denise> yeah @_@

  • Denise smile back though
  • Yvonne nods, seeming satisfied with that

<Denise> . o O (Ugh, sisters! @_@)

<Yvonne> And when you have babies, I'll babysit for them :D

<Denise> ...

<Denise> yes.

<Denise> liek, a long time from now when you're more growed up .p

<Denise> :p

  • Yvonne makes a bit of a pout

<Yvonne> I'm growed up :p

<Denise> yeah but I ain't havin' any babies!

<Denise> not like... for a while >:|

<Yvonne> hmph

  • Yvonne is clearly displeased with your stubborn refusal to get pregnant for her entertainment ;)

<Yvonne> Well I can babysit for Avionne anyway.

<Denise> yeah :3

<Denise> get lotsa practice

  • Yvonne nods
  • Yvonne will go off to angle for another chance to hold the baby, then

<Enver> No pressure, huh? :)

<Denise> yeah -_-

<Denise> well like

<Denise> other'n uncle Thierry everyone in the family already had babies real early

<Denise> but

<Denise> I don't wanna.

  • Denise says firmly

<Enver> well, sure. She's ten, though, she doesn't understand you've got a lot of stuff to do that don't include havin' a baby just yet.

<Denise> yeah

<Enver> Like... lots of stuff >.>

  • Denise smiles and blushes

<Denise> yeah :3

<Mikel> I'm right here, you know ;p

  • Denise will give him a little kiss of people are mostly not paying attentino, or no one concerning >.>

<Mikel> Go be smoochy somewhere else ;)

<Denise> the house is all full ;p

<Mikel> Ah, fine :p

<Denise> how's romain? ;p

<Mikel> Ah... it didn't work out.

<Denise> aww :/

<Denise> I'm sorry :/

<Denise> I wondered why he weren't here

<Mikel> It's okay

<Mikel> Uncle Serge-Yves says ... uh.

  • Mikel looks liek he's reconsidering saying what Uncle Serge-Yves says.

<Denise> oh boy, I can figgure :p

<Enver> He says there's plenty of fish in the sea :p

<Denise> un huh

<Mikel> Yes

  • Mikel looks relieved for that out ;)

<Denise> an' then somethin' about poles an' bait I bet :p

<Mikel> Maybe >.>

  • Denise rolls her eyes

<Denise> You doin' okay, then?

<Mikel> Yeah. Gonna get moved in with Uncle Alain, like, in a couple weeks or so. That'll be good.

<Denise> yeah :)

<Mikel> He's just super busy workin' on the paper - both papers - right now, so he said give him a bit of time to get things ready.

<Denise> It's like.... it's nice bein' out of the house.

  • Denise admits, a bit guilty
  • Mikel nods

<Denise> but I'm real glad, it'll be good for you both

<Mikel> I hope so, yeah.

<Mikel> An' he won't throw a fit if I bring someone home :p

<Denise> yeah

<Denise> like

<Denise> he lived with Serges-Yves ;p

<Mikel> Exactly

<Denise> we just gotta make sure he ain't stayin' too busy ;p

<Denise> 'cause he will if we let 'im!

  • Mikel nods

<DiablotinNarrator> Denise, you see that your father's gone to sit beside your mother, so maybe now is a good chance to bring Enver over?

  • Denise asks him

<Enver> I guess so?

  • Enver gives your hand a squeeze
  • Denise gives his hand a squeeze
  • Denise braces her self
  • Denise will lead him over to where they are together
  • Elcina looks up and smiles to see you come over. Patric looks up and glowers.
  • Denise smiles at her mom and resists, barely, gloweing back at her dad

<Denise> Mam, da....

<Denise> I wanted you both to get to meet Enver

  • Enver clears his throat nervously

<Denise> he's my boyfriend.

<Enver> Hello, M. and Mme. Murodea.

  • Denise says, probably more firmly than necessary

<Denise> mam, you met him for a bit at the holidays...

<Elcina> Oh yes - we met during the holidays. It's so nice to see you again :)

  • Elcina is more with it today - no tea
  • Denise smiles at that, even if she isn't totally sure her mother really remembers or not :3

<Enver> Nice to see you to, ma'am.

<Patric> So, Enver is it? What's your last name?

<Enver> Um, Raspail, sir.

  • Patric nods, as if thinking 'well at least he's a Rat'

<Patric> And what do you do for a living?

  • Enver was anticipating this question...
  • Denise bites her lip

<Enver> I do transportation work in the undercity.

<Patric> Yeah, connected to that new underground train they're supposed to be workin' on?

  • Denise womders what her dad will think that even means >.>

<Enver> Ah, sorta, yeah. Finding the safe routes and hazards for travel down there.

  • Denise nods, keeping her mouth shut

<Patric> Well... I imagine there's plenty of hazards.

<Enver> Yes, sir, but I try and avoid them.

  • Patric nods
  • Denise gives her dad a suspicious look

<Patric> Hazards like, I dunno, guards?

<Enver> Well, I try and avoid them too, sir. Don't want any trouble.

<Denise> ugh, da >:|

  • Elcina puts her hand over her husband's

<Elcina> It sounds like interesting work... I was always curious about things down in the undercity, from the old times. Do you come across much of that?

<Enver> Sometimes, ma'am.

<Enver> There is sure a lot of interesting things down there.

<Denise> yeah

<Elcina> Well, that'd be real interesting to hear about.

  • Denise says defensively
  • Denise nods

<Denise> Enver's got all kinds of good stories

<Patric> Mmh. What about your folks, what do they do?

<Enver> Well, my mother was a seamstress and took in washing and the like, but she died when I was young. I never knew my father, sir.

<Elcina> Oh, how sad.

  • Patric looks a little softer at that too.

<Denise> he's done real well though, he's got him own place an' everything.

<Elcina> Well, that's good... Did you have some family to look after you, growing up?

<Enver> Uh, friends of the family, yeah.

  • Denise nods

<Patric> So, this place - it's big enough for the two of you?

<Denise> uh

  • Denise doens't understand the question

<Denise> I guess...so...?

<Patric> For the two of you to live in. Or more, if any surprises come along?

<Denise> o_O

<Elcina> Patric :p

<Denise> there ain't gonna be no surprises.

<Elcina> They're just dating, they aren't getting married.

<Denise> an', yeah.

<Patric> Mmph.

<Denise> Mmph.

<Enver> Sir, my place is okay for me, an' Denise now and then, but there's no need to worry about more than that right yet.

<Denise> yeah

<Patric> No, well, you don't think so now...

<Denise> Gosh, da, thanks >:|

<Denise> It ain't gonna be like that >:|

<Elcina> Patric - Denise is a smart girl, and I'm sure she's taking care of things, and it's really not our business anyway.

<Patric> Mm.

<Patric> It'll be our business if she winds up in trouble, and back here...

<Denise> >:| >:|

<Elcina> Well the way you treat her, I doubt she'd even come back here.

<Denise> I can take car of myself, *da* >:|

<Enver> Sir... that ain't gonna be a problem, but *if* it was, it wouldn't be your problem, it'd be mine and Denise's.

<Denise> I got other folks to look out for me who ain't so mean about it >:|

  • Patric frowns, but looks slightly ...concerned/ashamed?

<Patric> Denise, I'm just tryin' to look out for you.

<Denise> You want me to do what *you* want, is all >:|

<Denise> I ain't gonna have your life!

<Patric> ...

<Patric> No, I guess not.

<Denise> An... I don't have to!

<Denise> >:|

<Denise> an it ain't for you to decide.

<Elcina> Patric, tell her you're happy for her that she's found such a nice young man, an' don't act like they're gonna mess things up the way we did :p

<Patric> ... yeah.

<Patric> We wouldn't want that.

<Elcina> :/

<Denise> D:

<Denise> D:<

<Denise> ngh, I'm sorry, mam, We're gonna go talk to..... Aunt Hettie >:|

  • Denise takes Enver's arm and whirls away with him

<Enver> sorry... did I mess it up?

<Denise> NO YOu didn't >:|

  • Denise will actually go outside for a bit with him
  • Enver looks concerned
  • Denise sniffs agrily

<Enver> hey...

<Denise> he just ruins everything D:<

<Denise> ;_;

<Enver> he's wrong

<Denise> I know!

<Denise> but bhe's my dad!

<Denise> he ai

<Denise> t suppesed to tell me I ain't gonna do nothin but be stupid an fuckup my life!

<Enver> maybe he's tryin' to look out for you, but he don't seem like he knows you're grown up an' you can look after yourself

<Denise> an that's all he *ever* says

  • Enver nods
  • Enver offers you a hug

<Denise> he just wants me to be like him an work in a factory an grind myself down until there ain't nothin' left but *mean*

  • Denise will accept afte a moment of huffing, and slowly untense and start crying
  • Enver just holds you
  • Denise 's tears are probably freezing to her face, anyway :p

<DiablotinNarrator> Hettie, meanwhile inside... not sure how close attention you're paying to Patric, but there's definitely some drama going on.

<Hettienne> Ah shit... :|

  • Thierry glances in that direction too

<Thierry> Should we? ;p

<Hettienne> What'd he do now

<Thierry> Gods only know...

<Hettienne> Ah fuck, where's Denise

<Hettienne> :|

  • Thierry has baby Avionne in his arms

<Thierry> I'll go talk to Patric, you go find her?

<Hettienne> Aright.

<Hettienne> Better you than me

  • Thierry knows his job in the family -_-
  • Hettienne will go looking for her niece then.

<Hettienne> *sniff*

<Denise> (probably loud voices from outside would be telling, to start >.>)

  • Hettienne pokes her head outside.

<Hettienne> Denise?

  • Enver is hugging a crying Denise
  • Denise is crying on Enver's shoulder
  • Denise sniffs and looks up when she hears it's you though

<Hettienne> Oh honey.

<Hettienne> What did he say to you? >:|

<Denise> he jus...

  • Denise sniffs

<Denise> liek he don't think I can do anything right, ever

<Hettienne> Oh like he's some big success story?!

  • Hettienne fumes.

<Denise> an... like, he needs to look out for me an the only way he can do it is bein' mean

<Hettienne> I oughta give him a piece o' my mind!!

<Denise> it dn't matter, it ain't gonna change nothin'

<Hettienne> He ain't gonna stop until he drives everyone off.

  • Enver has the good sense to keep his mouth shut during this >.>

<Denise> I hope not

<Denise> Maybe it's just me :(

<Hettienne> Your brother?

<Denise> >_<

<Denise> he's still got a chance :/

<Hettienne> Your sister only don't know better 'cause she's young yet :|

  • Denise sniffs

<Denise> Yvie's smart, an she does good in school an, maybe she even has a *real* chance :(

<Hettienne> As long as he lets her keep goin', and don't decide she needs to go work in some damn factory!

<Denise> that Ain't Happenin. >:|

<Denise> I dno't wanna go back in. I feel like I already ruined the whole thing :(

<Enver> I'll take you home if you wanna go. But I don't think you ruined nothin'.

<Hettienne> No you didn't. :|

<Denise> He just makes me so mad ;_;

<Denise> ugh!

<Enver> At the least, we gotta go back in to get our coats >.>

<Hettienne> I'll get 'em.

<Denise> thanks, aunt hettie :/

  • Serge-Yves will be waiting when you get back in, Hettie

<Serge-Yves> She okay?

<Hettienne> Not really!

<Serge-Yves> :/

<Hettienne> The hell is wrong with him?!

<Serge-Yves> I dunno.

<Serge-Yves> Do you think she'd talk to Pat? I think he wants to talk to her, if she ain't just gonna deck him one when she sees him.

<Hettienne> *I* wouldn't

<Serge-Yves> Naw, I know you wouldn't.

<Serge-Yves> but you ain't Denise.

<Hettienne> UUurgh.

<Hettienne> She's already cryin'!

<Serge-Yves> Well... up to her, I guess?

<Serge-Yves> If she don't wanna, I don't blame her none. Nobody would.

<Hettienne> I guess if she does punch him, he got it comin'.

<Serge-Yves> True enough.

<Hettienne> She wants 'er coat.

<Hettienne> Tell 'im to take that, at least.

  • Hettienne grumbles.
  • Serge-Yves nods
  • Serge-Yves will go and relay that message, then
  • Hettienne watches the door. :|
  • Patric will return a few minutes later with Denise and Enver's coats, walking like a man going to the gallows.

<Patric> She outside?

  • Patric asks warily

<Hettienne> Mm-hmm.

  • Hettienne fixes him with a frosty gaze.

<Patric> ...I didn't mean to...

<Hettienne> Don't tell *me*.

  • Patric nods
  • Patric will step outside with the coats, then

<Patric> It's cold... you'll want these I guess.

  • Denise wipes her eyes warily

<Denise> so, waht, you're throwin' up out properlike, now?

<Patric> I... I ain't throwin' you out. I would never...

  • Patric sighs, trying that one again

<Patric> This is always your home if you want it to be, Denise.

  • Denise doesn't really trust herself to answer that, but her lips tighten somewhat

<Patric> I know I ain't said the right things...

<Patric> Like that I ... I care what happens to you, an' that I know you can look out for yourself.

<Denise> :/

  • Denise seems suspicious still

<Denise> ...did mam tell you to say that?

<Patric> She ... she told me how it sounded, what I said before.

<Denise> YOu don't trust me.

<Patric> An' lookin' at it like that, you got every right to be mad at me.

<Denise> an you *dont* think I can take care of myself.

<Denise> and if I can' you still don't like how!

<Patric> I worry about you.

<Denise> I can't do nothing right!

  • Denise tries to keep from yelling in the streets, but hey, its the Shambles, we might still be the Good Neighbours >.>

<Patric> An' you're right that I don't like the crowd you're wrapped up with. Because I worry about what'll happen to you if you get into trouble - any kind of trouble.

<Patric> Because... I'm scared of losin' you.

<Patric> but maybe I already did.

  • Denise sniffs again

<Denise> I just...

<Denise> I just wanna be able to look after folks in my own way

<Denise> that's all

<Patric> All right.

<Patric> Here, you... you must be cold, at least put on your coat...

  • Patric offers them to you again
  • Denise will take them both and pass Enver his
  • Enver takes it, putting it on

<Patric> ...

<Denise> :/

<Denise> Just... tell folks I'm sorry we didn't stay.

<Patric> Okay.

<Denise> ...

<Denise> Thanks Da.

<Patric> You take care.

  • Denise nods, and will take Enver and head out
  • Patric will head back inside, then
  • Hettienne glares.

<Patric> you can shoot daggers at me all you want, Hettie. I'm just... tired.

  • Hettienne frowns, not sure what to make of that.
  • Patric will head upstairs unless you stop him

<Hettienne> (I'll let him go)

<Patric> (okay)

<DiablotinNarrator> The party is pretty subdued after that, and people will gradually head out too.

<Denise> (Denise will apologize to SY later :/)

<DiablotinNarrator> (aw, he'd tell her it's not her fault)

<Denise> (are we done?)

<DiablotinNarrator> (unless either of you had anything to add?)

<Hettienne> (I'm good :)

<DiablotinNarrator> 'kk

<Hettienne> thanks!

<DiablotinNarrator> np :)


Zola learns she has to pretend to be Mico again

<DiablotinNarrator> Zola, you are awakened at the unacceptable hour of 10am by your phone ringing, which usually means it's your agent calling.

  • Zola fumbles the receiver a bit before getting it in place... "Hello?"

<Hector> Zola, baby, good news!

<Zola> Yeah? What's that?

  • Zola tries not to sound unnecessarily dubious.

<Hector> 'Waiting For You' is gonna be on the air - Stefan Cuville's spinning it on the Red Lion Dance Hour next week!

  • Hector names a popular radio show that broadcasts trendy dance tunes for the young folks.

<Zola> Wait, you got it on the air already?

<Hector> 'Course I did, aren't I the best agent ever?

<Hector> It'll be just in time for the release, it's perfect :D

<Zola> That's splendid!

<Hector> There's just one... tiny...insignificant... catch.

  • Zola stops, looking around for Bastien to tell him the news...

<Zola> "Yeah, you need me to do another show for Mico?"

<Hector> Well, I might have promised him an exclusive interview with Mico.

<Zola> Oh for... an interview?

<Hector> And exclusive rights to Mico's next single. Which I told him is coming out real soon now.

<Hector> So... you got a Mico single ready to go?

<Zola> Theo and I've been trying to get one ironed out...

<Zola> What does that mean, exclusive rights? Like for airplay?

<Hector> Right, only he gets to play it on his show for the first while it's out - like to draw in the audience, kind of thing.

<Zola> Well, if you think that's worth it...

<Zola> The interview though, that's ...

<Hector> That's what?

<Zola> It's not live is it?

<Hector> Why?

  • Hector asks, not answering the question

<Zola> Well, that's extra awkward... it's harder to dodge any questions I don't like if the whole city's listening.

<Hector> Well, we can hash out the details

<Zola> Yeah, I guess we can. I guess it's not too bad a deal... is it?

<Hector> Zola, it's great!

<Hector> And he did like Zola's voice - he wasn't just interested in Mico. He thought she'd be a shoe-in for a gig that's coming open.

<Zola> Yeah, a gig?

  • Zola perks up a little.

<Hector> Yeah, The Red Lion Cigarettes jingle!

<Hector> I mean, it's great publicity - everyone will hear it!

  • Zola sighs.

<Zola> I guess at least it's not penguins.

<Hector> That's the spirit :D

<Zola> Just make sure he knows Mico's a private person, right? So he won't get surprised when I shut some questions down.

<Hector> We can get a list of questions up front, so you can clear 'em ahead of time

  • Hector assures you soothingly

<Zola> Yeah, that sounds good...

  • Zola foolishly allows herself to be soothed

<Hector> Great, baby, I'll get in touch with all the details. You get working on a new hit for Mico, okay? :D

<Zola> Yeah, I'll ring Theo up and light a fire under him... after the rest of my sleep.

  • Hector has already hung up before you finish your sentence

<Zola> Thanks for setting this up, Hector.

  • Zola shrugs

<Zola> Bastien!

<Bastien> mrr?

  • Zola sweeps him up
  • Bastien meeps at you

<Zola> Come to bed! I have great news!

  • Zola tells him a bedtime story about pretty jazz singers on the radio :3
  • Bastien will knead your blankets and listen patiently

<DiablotinNarrator> (so, you want to talk to Theo?)

<Zola> (Sure :3)

<Zola> (Phone or in person?)

<Theo> (do you usually work at the club with him, before opening hours, or at your place, or elsewhere?)

  • Zola imagines Mico talk occurs elsewhere, for safety's sake.

<Zola> (Could be her place, or his)

<DiablotinNarrator> (okay - let's say your place)

  • Zola has coffee brewed to help ward away the cold.
  • Theo arrives for practice times :)

<Theo> How's it going, Zola?

<Zola> Good, despite my sleep being all broken up today... I got news though... from Hector @_@

<Theo> Oh?

  • Zola pours him some coffee and sets it where he usually sits for once he's shucked his winter things

<Theo> Good news, I hope?

<Zola> Yeah, he's worked out a deal to get 'Waiting for You' on the Red lion Dance Hour @_@

<Theo> Oh, that's great!

<Zola> It is! Though there's a few hoops to jump through...

<Theo> It seems like there always are with Hector...

  • Zola puts lots of sugar in her coffee and sets it aside too cool a bit.

<Zola> Yeah, well... I can't blame him entirely...

<Zola> At least in this case he's got to convince someone else to do something for him... us.

<Theo> what's the catch, then?

<Zola> Exclusivity... an interview with Mico, and first dibs on his next single...

<Theo> Well... if you've got to be exclusive, I guess Red Lion is a good way to go. All the kids listen to it.

  • Theo says as though he wasn't 21 himself :p

<Zola> Yeah, I figure Hector's self-interest means that part's a good deal.  :)

<Theo> ... so, next single, huh?

<Zola> Yeah, I guess he'd like us to put a push on that.

<Theo> Well, I've got a few ideas - we can try to hammer something out

<Zola> Yeah, I'm sure you'll dream up another hit :)

  • Theo smiles

<Theo> Do you get to meet Stefan Cuville, too? I always wanted to meet him.

<Theo> He's got a dreamy voice ;)

<Zola> Ha! I guess I do, one way or another... I just hope I don't have to do the interview live...

<Theo> for all I know, he looks like a bridge troll, though ;p

<Zola> Maybe, but then you could just close your eyes :D

<Theo> Hah. He's been on the air since I was a little kid, he's probably pretty old by now too.

<Zola> Hey, if 'Waiting for You' does well, he might want to meet you too! Songwriter for two hit singers!

<Theo> Oh, I don't know... nobody's interested in the songwriter :)

<Zola> Maybe not so much the public, but he's in the business!

<Theo> Well, if I'm gonna write another hit, tell me - which do you like better, trolley cars or moonbeams?

  • Zola winces visibly

<Zola> ...is neither an option?

<Theo> The third option is penguins.

  • Theo says with a smirk ;)
  • Zola sighs

<Zola> If I say trolley cars is there going to be clanging in the song?

<Theo> Almost certainly.

<Zola> Why are you so cruel, Theo? ;_;

<Zola> I was just thinking the next one better not be another Ring Ring Ring...

<Theo> Because I'm in touch with the youth of today ^-^

<Zola> Anything but moonbeams...

<Theo> Clanging it is.

  • Zola puts on her saddest of sad faces

<Theo> Don't worry, we'll add some innuendo so it's more fun.

  • Zola considers taht

<Theo> Something about riding your trolley to the end of the line. It'll be a hit ;)

<Zola> It might be worth all the pain.

<Zola> Just to sneak in something scandalous

  • Theo smiles

<Theo> Well, better get to work.

  • Theo will settle in to put you through some terrible catchy pop songs ;p
  • Zola sighs, puts on her Mico voice, and lets Theo have his way with her.

Aubrienne learns that Cassie has a new romantic prospect

<DiablotinNarrator> Aubrienne, you haven't had too much time to see Cassie for the last little while, being so busy with everything else that's going on. She's usually pretty patient, but she does finally ask to get together, with a certain nervous urgency that will get your attention.

<DiablotinNarrator> You can make time to see her for breakfast after the show one early morning.

<Aubrienne> (Where are we meeting?)

<DiablotinNarrator> (one of the diners that is near the club, maybe?)

<DiablotinNarrator> (someplace that will be open for breakfast at 4am ;)

<Aubrienne> (Sounds good, wherever she likes)

<Aubrienne> (Are we headed there together, or meeting there?)

<Cassandreia> (headed there together, probably)

<Cassandreia> You've been pretty busy lately, huh?

<Aubrienne> It's been pretty hectic, yeah.

<Cassandreia> Are you doing okay?

<Aubrienne> Personally, yes, more or less. But with my brother, and these fey, and getting attacked, and, just, everything...

<Aubrienne> It's a little exhausting.

<Cassandreia> :/

<Aubrienne> How are you doing?

<Cassandreia> Welll....

<Aubrienne> It wasn't my intention to complain. ;)

<Cassandreia> oh, no, it's okay

<Cassandreia> I... things are okay with me. Good, actually.

<Cassandreia> I ... I don't know how to tell you, though.

<Aubrienne> Hmm? You can tell me anything. :)

<Cassandreia> Well... I met someone.

<Aubrienne> Oh ho? Well, let's get a seat and you can give me some details. :D

  • Cassandreia looks over at you uncertainly, to see how you'll react
  • Aubrienne will wait to get seated and then begin the interrogation.
  • Cassandreia takes a seat and will order some food

<Aubrienne> Who's the lucky lady?

<Cassandreia> Well, do you know Theo Olivier? The songwriter?

<Aubrienne> (Do I? I think a bit, right?)

<Cassandreia> (yeah, I'm sure Aubrienne at least knows who he is... he's often at the club working with the musicians and so on)

<Aubrienne> Oh, yeah, a little bit. He and I don't really work on the same things, but he seems nice.

  • Cassandreia nods

<Cassandreia> He's around the club a lot, and one night his sister came by to talk to him, and... she's really pretty.

<Cassandreia> His younger sister, not Gabby.

  • Cassandreia clarifies
  • Aubrienne smiles.

<Aubrienne> Have you asked her out yet?

<Cassandreia> Her name's Ysabel... we've talked a few times, and I got her phone number, but I haven't got up the courage yet >.>

  • Aubrienne will reach over to give Cassie's hand a squeeze.

<Aubrienne> You should give her a call.

<Cassandreia> What if she's only interested in being friends, though?

<Aubrienne> :shrug: You won't know unless you ask.

<Cassandreia> I just wish there was a way to tell :p

  • Cassandreia sighs

<Aubrienne> Think of it as part of the thrill.

<Cassandreia> She's just so beautiful...

<Cassandreia> I don't want you to think I don't like you, though

  • Cassandreia adds quickly

<Aubrienne> Aww, Cass, I appreciate the thought, but my self-image isn't that fragile. I'm cute, but I'm not for everyone. ;)

<Aubrienne> Besides, thinking one person is pretty doesn't mean you can't think others are as well.

<Cassandreia> Well... I think you're real glamorous :)

<Aubrienne> Aww, thank you, but I really wasn't fishing for the compliment.

<Aubrienne> I think you're adorable. ;)

  • Cassandreia blushes, smiling

<Cassandreia> So... um, can I ask another question?

<Aubrienne> Sure.

<Cassandreia> You and, um, the boss... you're pretty stuck on her, huh?

<Aubrienne> (Has Aubrienne told Cassie specifcally that she's dating Titania?)

<Cassandreia> (no, I don't think so?)

  • Cassandreia may have picked up on that on her own...

<Aubrienne> (Okay, just double-checking)

<Aubrienne> Oh, well, I'm very fond of her, yeah. >.>

<Aubrienne> Why do you ask?

<Cassandreia> I just wasn't sure whether something was going on... or what it meant for us.

<Aubrienne> Well, sweetie, I've very fond of you, too, but I don't want to hurt you. I told you when we started seeing each other what dating me meant, and if it's not something you want anymore, I completely understand.

<Aubrienne> That sounds more, uh, clinical, or something, than I mean it.

  • Cassandreia nods a bit sadly

<Aubrienne> I like you a lot, Cassie, but if I can't give you what you want, I don't want to keep you from finding it.

<Aubrienne> You deserve to be happy, sweetie.

<Cassandreia> I guess... I want someone who'll be happy just with me.

<Cassandreia> I just don't want to make you sad :(

<Aubrienne> Well, I'm not going to lie and say I wouldn't miss the aspects that would change, but I'm also happy just being your friend if that's easier for you.

<Aubrienne> If you want just one person who also just wants you, then you should go for that.

<Aubrienne> I'm not going to stop you from finding your happiness.

  • Cassandreia nods

<Aubrienne> Void, I'll help. :)

<Cassandreia> You're really the best, you know?

<Aubrienne> Yeah, I know. ;)

  • Cassandreia leans across the table to kiss you
  • Aubrienne is happy to kiss back.

<DiablotinNarrator> (awww :3)

Gen and Lathra meet Karala

<DiablotinNarrator> Gen, you are invited to the Orecalo household to meet with the mysterious Karala, who has apparently arrived in the city. You can certainly bring Lathra for support and to have someone else who might think of questions to ask her :)

  • Genevriel does invite Lathra, and tries not to freak out about going to the Orecalo residence.
  • Lathra tries to make sure she goes to the right Orecalo residence.
  • Genevriel will wear her single nice outfit, again - the one that Dorien bought her.

<DiablotinNarrator> You can be shown into a sitting room to meet Karala

  • Karala is a rather plump middle-aged woman with wavy black hair with a few strands of grey, wearing a colourful wrapped shawl and long dress.

<Karala> Good day.

  • Karala says with a Psyrene accent.

<Genevriel> <Psyrene> Good day.

  • Genevriel replies with a tentative smile.

<Genevriel> Thank you for agreeing to meet with me...

<Genevriel> May I introduce my friend, Lathra?

  • Genevriel continues in Common, so as not to be rude.

<Karala> It's a pleasure to meet you both.

  • Lathra nods, not wanting to butt in on Gen.

<Lathra> And to meet you too!

<DiablotinNarrator> (The Orecalos would also provide you with tea, naturally ;p)

<Karala> So, I have heard you are having some difficulties... some unusual circumstances?

  • Genevriel will make small talk for a bit, first, to put her nerves at ease - just talk about Psyra, mainly. She stumbles a little when she speaks of which part *she* grew up in so probably can tell she has some traumatice memories. But, Gen's grief is becoming easier to bear, so she doesn

<Genevriel> ('t break down into tears or anything)

<Denise> (That house is full of teaq)

<Denise> (tea)

<DiablotinNarrator> (so much tea)

  • Genevriel will then fill in Karala on her difficulties, yes.
  • Karala will listen, of course, and also speak a bit about where she's from in Psyra
  • Genevriel explains what happened to her at the end of the war.

<Genevriel> Have you ever heard of anything like that happening to someone else?

<Karala> Not precisely like that, no... but my own experience was not completely different.

<Genevriel> What happened for you?

<Genevriel> If you don't mind my asking...

<Karala> Of course not.

<Karala> I was young, I suppose fourteen or fifteen. My family were quite traditional Psyrene farmers, nothing too unusual for our region.

<Karala> They paid little attention to the Church of the Wheel, other than what was expected - holidays and so forth.

  • Genevriel listens

<Karala> But my mother often told me that our people were watched over by a different god, Horse.

  • Genevriel smiles slightly.

<Karala> I tried praying to Horse - it felt less... distant, I suppose, than the gods the priests talked about.

<Karala> There was a shrine, an old, old place that had been abandoned long ago.

<Karala> I went there often when I was young. For some while, nothing happened. I wondered perhaps whether I was doing it wrong, but I felt a presence there nevertheless.

<Karala> I didn't know what the proper rites were, or how to perform them

<Karala> I simply offered my service to Horse, if it was willing to accept me. And it was.

  • Karala takes out from under her shawl a small hedgehog, setting it on her lap.

<Karala> This is Teelo...

  • Karala introduces you to the hedgehog
  • Lathra stifles an enchanted "oh!"

<Genevriel> Hello, Teelo?

  • Genevriel looks a little perplexed.
  • Lathra can't suppress her goofy grin though

<Karala> Teelo is my familiar - but not quite in the same way that a sorcerer might have a familiar.

<Genevriel> Oh?

<Karala> For me, Teelo is not just an ... accessory to my power. He is the vessel I draw on for my spells.

<Karala> Professor Orecalo has a great many theories about this, of course.

  • Genevriel smiles slightly. "I can imagine."

<Karala> But what I think is perhaps similar to your experience, is the force I deal with... something greater than myself, that I cannot fully understand.

  • Genevriel nods.

<Karala> In my case, however, I did offer myself freely - you seem to have had no such choice?

<Genevriel> Well... I was raised in a fairly devout Way of the Wheel family; we couldn't get to temple, but we had a shrine to Wolf in our home and would read to one another on First-Days. But... I repudiated Wolf early in the war, and buried my symbol with a priestess friend who died. So, when I wanted - needed - to rescue that boy, I didn't know who to call on. So... I asked if anyone who was listening could help me.

<Genevriel> Probably not very wise, I know.

<Genevriel> This entity that I can only identify as "The One" is what responded. I don't really know who or what it is, or what it hoped I can be to it. Some of its words that Lathra has been able to translate could be harmless, or could be rather ominous.

<Karala> If in that moment you were willing to accept this... power, I suppose, into yourself, then it explains why it has a hold on you still.

  • Genevriel nods.

<Genevriel> And is not like to give up that hold, I think... So my focus must now be on trying to figure out what it is, what it wants, if anything.

<Karala> Does it speak to you often?

<Genevriel> (Well, since I've been regularly casting Pleasant Dreams on myself, I'm not sure if I hear the voices as much anymore? Logically I think I would, I'm just not having nightmares with them, I suppose - so - am I hearing them often, still

<Genevriel> ?)

<DiablotinNarrator> (I would say yes, you're still hearing them regularly - just not with the nightmares that you used to have along with them)

  • Genevriel nods.

<Genevriel> All the time, particularly when there is no ambient noise to drown the voices out. With M. Orecalo's assistance, I have learned that they speak a dialect of Celestial.

<Genevriel> So, I'm undertaking to learn Celestial now, so that - I hope - I can understand what they are saying, and begin, finally to get a grasp on what I might be dealing with.

  • Karala nods

<Karala> If you can do that, it seems like a good step to take.

<Karala> If their words are not too... ominous, as you said.

  • Genevriel nods. "I'm trying to find some books I can teach myself from."

<Genevriel> Even if their words are ominous... I think I'd like to know what they're saying. So I can plan to live a normal life, or not...

  • Karala nods

<Karala> Professor Orecalo believes your powers are divine in nature... of course, he also believes mine are not, so I think our definitions of 'divine' may vary somewhat :)

  • Genevriel smiles slightly.

<Genevriel> Every indication seems to be they are divine in origin, yes...

<Genevriel> The gifts The One has granted to me all relate to fire and healing - do you know if those gifts might indicate whether The One might be Horse or any of the other Agathions?

<Karala> It doesn't sound like Horse to me.

<Karala> But I don't think it's coincidental that this happened to you when it did.

<Karala> Or that some new sort of power should be manifesting now, at any rate.

<Karala> with Serpent's return, things have changed.

<Genevriel> No, M. Orecalo didn't think so, either. He believes it is likely due to the turmoil that Serpent's re-emergence has caused in the Court of Stars.

  • Genevriel nods.

<Karala> Ultimately, I think all magical power comes from a single source - it's only a difference in how we as humans are able to understand it and access it.

<Genevriel> The other thing is, since I have had these powers, I know always where the star at the centre of the Wheel is.

<Genevriel> I don't know if it's related.

  • Karala nods

<Karala> I think it must be.

<Karala> Something has reached out to you.

<Genevriel> Well, responded to my desperation, at any rate...

  • Genevriel smiles dryly.
  • Karala nods

<Karala> If you wish, I am willing to cast a spell to allow me to contact another plane and ask a question on your behalf.

<Genevriel> ...

<Genevriel> That could yield some intriguing results, but... what question would be the right one to ask?

<Karala> That, I couldn't tell you :)

<Karala> But you could ask as many as five.

<Genevriel> ...

<Karala> You can take time to think about it, if you wish

<Genevriel> I don't know if I can think of five questions right here, right now.

<Karala> I'll be here in the city for some time.

  • Genevriel nods.

<Genevriel> Thank you; this is a very generous offer.

  • Lathra nods

<Genevriel> What can I do for you in return?

  • Karala smiles

<Karala> I'm not sure.

<Karala> What would you be willing to offer?

<Genevriel> Well... nothing that imperils my immortal soul.

  • Genevriel smiles, gallows humour is about all she can manage these days.

<Karala> Oh, goodness, well, I wasn't going to ask for that, even if there was anything I could do with it.

<Genevriel> . o O (Not that I need much help with that, anyway.)

<Karala> I can tell you, though, that one reason I came to the city was because I want an apprentice. I don't want my knowledge to die with me.

<Karala> If you knew of someone who would be interested in that, you could let me know.

<Genevriel> Someone who would like to be a servant of Horse?

<Karala> Yes.

  • Genevriel seems doubtful that she might find such a person, but will keep it in mind.

<Genevriel> If I meet anyone like that, I can certainly put him or her in touch with you.

<Genevriel> Is that all?

<Karala> That's all that I can think of.

  • Genevriel seems worried that she might not have much luck with that.

<Genevriel> Well, I will do my best, but you ought to know my social circles are... limited. So it might take a long time.  :/

<Karala> Well, I'm not expecting you to do it for me - I came here with the intention of looking for myself too.

<Karala> It would be a kind gesture if you did know of someone, though.

  • Genevriel nods.

<Genevriel> (I can't think of anyone off the top of my head just now.)

<DiablotinNarrator> (okay)

  • Karala will let Lathra pet Teelo before you go, too ;)

<Lathra> . o O ( :3 :3 :3 )

<Lathra> He's so darling!

Argent reports to Briony

<DiablotinNarrator> Argent, you're about due for a report to Briony

<Argent> (ok!)

  • Briony will meet you at a cafe, as usual
  • Briony seems a bit tired and worn out
  • Argent arrives as usual

<Argent> Everything good?

  • Argent asks as he sits

<Briony> Oh, things are kind of ... awful.

<Argent> What's wrong?

<Briony> My sister is an idiot, is what's wrong.

<Argent> You want to talk about it?

<Briony> I don't want to burden you...

  • Briony says, wavering slightly

<Argent> I've never met your sister, and I have big shoulders, sounds like I would be a good person to unload on.

<Briony> My sister is in the Colour Guard. And she has been arrested for apparently attacking some random passers-by.

<Briony> We both have our reasons to be concerned about outsiders in the Empire... we just don't agree on how best to deal with them :p

<Argent> Yeah, thats a rough one.

<Argent> How are you dealing with it?

<Briony> Well, trying to get her to talk to a lawyer, for one.

<Briony> She's always been... unstable :/

<Briony> I don't know whether to worry more that they'll put her in an asylum, or in prison.

<Argent> neither sound that great

<Briony> yeah...

<Argent> I can see why you're so worried

<Argent> she doesn't want your help, does she.

<Briony> No.

<Briony> I'm supposed to be the one looking out for my siblings... and now my brother is dead and my sister's in jail, so basically I've failed at the one thing I was supposed to do...

  • Briony drinks her coffee

<Briony> Anyway.

<Argent> I'm sure you'll figure something out.

<Briony> maybe

<Briony> I don't know if you should trust me to look out for you, though. I can't be very good at it.

  • Briony says with a sigh

<Briony> How about you fill me in on what you've been up to?

<Argent> You've helped me more than I can ever say... you changed my life.

  • Briony smiles a little at that

<Argent> and as you would tell me, if I was feeling discouraged, remember to trust your faith and yourself.

<Briony> You're right.

<Argent> As to what I've been up to... its been busy

<Argent> Had an encounter with a Cold Rider at my appartment, investigating if there is any blood tie to the shadar-ki who were in the summoning ritual.

<Briony> We think we may have a lead on tracking down the Cold Rider.

<Argent> thats good news

<Briony> I was going to ask if you wanted to join me and a few others of us for that.

<Argent> yes

<Argent> should I try and recruit some help as well?

<DiablotinNarrator> Well..

<Briony> Well..

  • Briony considers that for a moment

<Briony> If you have some people you trust, all right.

<Argent> I can think of at least one.

  • Briony nods

<Briony> We don't want to make too big a show out of it - so people who can keep quiet, preferably.

  • Argent nods

<Briony> All right - I'll keep you posted when we're ready to go ahead with that.

<Argent> I also found out about an encounter with some fungal infested rats in the sewars.

<Briony> Oh?

<Briony> That sounds interesting - are you following up on that, or want me to get someone else on it? I know you're busy.

<Argent> I think the Channels are investigating it, so you may be able to get better information.

<Briony> all right

<Argent> I thought if we could find some more, we could track them back to those fungal fae.

  • Briony nods

<Briony> It must be connected - it's too big a coincidence otherwise

<Argent> Eirlys, the fae we brought back from the dream, mentioned that they were servants of the Fungus Queen.

<Briony> Great. Wonderful.

<Briony> Just what we need, is more fey.

  • Briony sighs

<Argent> I didn't get the impression that the ice fey and the fungal fey are necessarily allies... which is some small comfort.

  • Briony nods

<Briony> Well, we'll work on dealing with them one at a time.

<Briony> You're doing great work.

<Argent> Well watching is starting to make me itch to do something.

  • Briony nods

<Briony> Soon enough.

  • Briony pats you on the shoulder

Hugo has a surprise visitor in the person of Eirini

<DiablotinNarrator> Hugo, you are at home, doing... whatever Hugo does at home. Organizing your scarves?

  • Hugonel sorts by texture, not by colour.

<Hugonel> Mmmm ... silky.

<DiablotinNarrator> Your doorbell rings.

  • Hugonel goes to answer the door.
  • Eirini stands outside your door, wearing a heavy cloak against the cold.
  • Hugonel is wearing silk pants and an open shirt, and is scarfless.

<Hugonel> Ah!

<Eirini> I gather you wanted to speak with me.

<Hugonel> That is ... ah, hello, Eirini. Please come in out of the cold - it's frigid out there.

  • Eirini nods, and will come inside
  • Hugonel opens the door widely - making sure to check if someone is out there planning to beat me senseless.
  • Eirini appears to be alone...

<Hugonel> Can I get you something to drink?

  • Eirini lowers her hood, and you can see that her hair is entirely white.
  • Hugonel closes the door.

<Eirini> No, thank you.

<Hugonel> Ahhh ... you've changed your hair.

<Eirini> The winter has changed my hair.

<Hugonel> Is that how it works? Fascinating!

<Hugonel> Come, sit down.

  • Eirini removes her cloak, underneath which she's wearing a silky black dress, and will come and sit down.

<Hugonel> How have you been?

<Eirini> Cold.

<Hugonel> That much we have in common.

<Hugonel> They say it's that Cold Rider causing all of this.

  • Eirini nods

<Eirini> They're not wrong.

  • Hugonel nods

<Hugonel> I ... admit to having a number of questions, and not knowing which to ask first.

<Hugonel> But I suppose I should start just by saying thank you for not ignoring me.

  • Eirini nods

<Eirini> I felt I owed you some ... apology, perhaps.

<Hugonel> For what specifically?

  • Hugonel asks, as if to suggest there may be multiple things.

<Eirini> For charming you - it was probably unecessary.

<Hugonel> Indeed - I have to admit to being more offended at that than anything else.

<Hugonel> Which is silly, perhaps.

<Hugonel> Were you charming me to get me out of the way, or to ... why were you charming me? Surely not simply for sex.

<Eirini> So that you wouldn't interfere.

<Eirini> If I just wanted sex with you, I could have that at any time.

<Hugonel> That much is true.

<Hugonel> What's your quarrel with the Count of Radstock, anyway?

<Eirini> He destroyed a sacred place. His spellcasters drained its power and then he burned it to the ground.

  • Hugonel nods.

<Hugonel> Well, I can't argue with that logic.

<Hugonel> The Dyess family is not known for its compassion and kindness.

<Hugonel> Eirini ... is that the name you prefer? Should I call you by another? ...

<Eirini> It suits me for the time being.

  • Hugonel nods.

<Hugonel> ... had we met before? I mean before the club. Years ago?

<Eirini> I'd never met you before that night.

  • Hugonel nods.

<Hugonel> I'm finding myself, rather against my will, involved in this whole business with the fey.

<Eirini> Are you. How difficult for you.

  • Eirini says dryly
  • Hugonel chuckles.

<Hugonel> It has its perks.

<Hugonel> Do you know what Klara Dannan might want with me?

<Eirini> I don't know... has she tried to give you any gifts?

<Hugonel> No ... she fed me and something in the wine had a rather unusual effect, or ... well, something did.

<Eirini> Well, I'd advise against accepting if she offers you things in the future

<Eirini> I mean, if you want to live.

  • Eirini says with a shrug

<Hugonel> In her ... true form ... does she have colorful wings, or a face like a skull? I don't even know what I'm asking, really.

  • Eirini gives you a sidelong look

<Eirini> No...

<Eirini> what have you seen, Hugo?

<Hugonel> It's ... a vision, from my youth ... of a red-haired woman - with wings and a skull face? - who kissed me, and said she'd see me again far in the future. Now here we are, and I have two strange red-haired women meddling with me.

<Hugonel> It's all like a dream - I don't know how much of it is real, but it *is* real.

  • Eirini looks somewhat shaken by that

<Hugonel> I've upset you. That wasn't my intent.

<Eirini> No... but perhaps I've meddled in something that I shouldn't have, in dealing with you.

<Hugonel> How so?

<Eirini> The woman you saw is... she is a being of great power. If she's laid a claim on you, then ...

<Hugonel> What kind of being?

<Eirini> I don't know if what she is has a name.

<Hugonel> How ... upsetting. Is she related to the various things going on here in the city now? Ice fey, and strange mushrooms, and all that?

<Eirini> Related, yes... that is one way to look at it.

<Hugonel> Does she bear ill will towards the city and to humans?

<Eirini> I don't know.

<Hugonel> Is she even here any more?

<Eirini> Perhaps?

  • Hugonel sighs.

<Hugonel> Okay, let's try something else. Why are the fey so interested in the cabaret?

<Hugonel> Why there, and not ... anywhere else in the city?

  • Eirini smiles

<Eirini> You'd like me to say that we're drawn there by your charm and beauty, wouldn't you

<Hugonel> No, actually that's what I'm most afraid of!

  • Eirini chuckles

<Eirini> Well, at least you're not overestimating your own importance.

  • Hugonel laughs.

<Hugonel> If what you say is true and some powerful fey has put some claim on me twenty years ago, why wouldn't it all come due now?

<Eirini> There used to be a sacred site there... sacred to our people, I mean. Underneath its stones, the river still flows, and the power still lingers.

<Hugonel> Is that why Jonas is there?

  • Eirini nods

<Hugonel> And why the Cold Rider appeared there.

  • Eirini nods again

<Hugonel> But nothing to do with the fact I'm working there.

<Eirini> That's purely a pleasant bonus.

  • Hugonel laughs.

<Hugonel> I've been told that many times.

<Hugonel> But never by a songbird.

<Hugonel> What kind of entity are you, if I might ask? We've been ... very close. I think perhaps I should know.

<Eirini> I'm a dryad.

  • Hugonel nods.

<Hugonel> Why did you come to visit today? Surely you could have just run off and ignored me. For all you knew, I planned to report you to the police.

<Eirini> Well, as I said, I felt perhaps I owed you some apology. And, Jonas asked me.

<Eirini> And I definitely owed him.

  • Hugonel nods.

<Hugonel> All right, I can accept that. And I accept your apology.

<Hugonel> And for the record, I think we have some more serious problems with the fey than one extremely attractive assassin taking out a known war criminal.

<Eirini> Yes, you do.

<Eirini> You may be concerned about the Cold Rider - but the cold is all that's keeping the Blight from spreading.

<Hugonel> The fungal business.

  • Eirini nods

<Hugonel> Is this a battle for control of the city? Or something even bigger?

<Eirini> Bigger than the city.

  • Hugonel nods.

<Eirini> This battle spans at least two planes, for one thing.

<Hugonel> And as for this winged woman from my past ... is she part of this battle? Should I be seeking her aid, or hiding from her?

<Eirini> I don't think you can hide from her, if she decides to seek you out.

<Eirini> I don't know what her plan is with you

<Hugonel> Where do you fit into all of this? A free agent? You don't seem to be allied with either of these two factions.

<Eirini> But I don't think she means you harm... or else you'd have been harmed by now.

  • Hugonel nods.

<Hugonel> Or let me ask it another way: why are you still here, if this battle is going on? Wouldn't you be better off going to ... some other plane, or at least some other place?

<Eirini> The First World isn't safe either. And here, at least, I can be close to my Lady.

<Hugonel> Who is that?

<Eirini> Linthira, the Forest Queen.

  • Hugonel nods, trying not to give away that he knows who that is

<Hugonel> Will I see you again?

<Eirini> Do you want to?

<Hugonel> I would be lying if I said no.

<Eirini> I could decide later.

  • Eirini suggests

<Hugonel> I ... I don't even know what I want anymore. The past few months have unmoored me.

<Eirini> I'm fairly sure I know what you want.

  • Eirini suggests with a smile
  • Hugonel laughs

<Hugonel> Well, just promise me you won't charm me again.

<Eirini> I don't think I need to.

  • Hugonel shakes his head slowly.

<Hugonel> Care for that drink I offered earlier?

<Eirini> yes, please

  • Hugonel will make her something nice, and one for himself.

Solos

Argent asks Dorien about Puce and Co.

  • Argent will catch Dorien at the appartment

<Argent> So whats up with the thug, the two burrly shadowy goons and you punching the wall?

  • Argent goes straight to the point

<Dorien> You don't beat around the bush much, do you?

<Argent> I could work the conversation towards it, if you want.

<Dorien> No. It's ok. I appreciate it.

<Dorien> I... might be in some trouble.

<Dorien> I'll try to make sure that doesn't happen again.

<Dorien> I'm sorry for bringing it here.

<Argent> I strongly doubt you intended that to happen.

<Dorien> No... I didn't.

<Argent> so should we start hiding a shotgun under the living room table?

<Dorien> Look, I don't want you to get hurt because of me.

  • Argent smiles

<Dorien> I've done enough of that.

<Argent> If someone comes into my home and threatens my friends, its not you causing someone to get hurt.

<Argent> As you know, I'm not incapable of taking care of myself

<Dorien> I know. And... thanks. Hopefully it won't be necessary. Misery thinks maybe we can sort it out somehow.

<Dorien> I guess you heard the basics of it.

<Argent> yeah... you worked for him, you want out, thought you had a way, thug welched on it and acted all scary.

<Dorien> That's... pretty much the long and short of it, yeah.

<Dorien> The plan was for me to get out and then work on helping Misery get out too.

<Dorien> No we're back to square one.

<Argent> well if you need help, im offering. I know some people from the old days that could help as well.

  • Dorien grins.

<Dorien> Sometimes I forget you're not too young to have "Old Days"

<Argent> well, they're not that old... more like the age of your shoes days.

<Dorien> heh

<Argent> so any other surprises I should know about, since we're chatting about unexpected stuff?

<Dorien> Well... yeah, actually.

<Dorien> Puce said something about seeing someone in the street. A big dude with horns.

<Argent> yeah

<Argent> the cold rider or whatever they call him

<Dorien> Yeah.

<Argent> I haven't had a chance to dig deeper into it

<Dorien> I don't know what he wants. Misery is scared it might be her.

<Argent> I need to talk with some people who may know about blood magic.

<Dorien> You want any back up?

<Argent> I was gonna try Aubrienne or Lathra, since they seem scholarly and the church of the serpent its kinda thier mojo

<Dorien> Not a bad place to start

<Dorien> I was meaning to talk to Bri about it anyway

<Argent> we can both talk to her

<Dorien> Maybe we can catch her and Lathra at work.

<Argent> It be great having you there, I mean, were aquainted, but Aubrienne and I are not that familiar.

<Dorien> Yeah, I know Aubrienne pretty well. Lathra I'm not quite as familiar with, but she seems cool enough.

  • Argent nods in agreement

<Argent> So how is Misery doing? Taking things in stride despite her fears?

<Dorien> I think so. She's understandably shaken. So am I.

<Dorien> She's tough, though.

<Argent> If it's getting to you, either of you, reach out to someone. You got friends, no point in going alone.

<Dorien> I don't know there's much anyone can do. At least, not about the rider. And unless you know anyone in the Nhau'kel, probably not much about Puce, either.

<Argent> Nothing yet, but I think there is hope. As for the Nhau'Kel... who knows...

  • Argent muses

<Dorien> That would be the problem, yes.

<Dorien> Who knows...

Argent gathers a group to talk about the fey invasion

  • Argent will gather the group into a booth before opening at Tit's

<Dorien> Hey folks.

<Argent> I know everyone has lots going on. Thanks for taking the time to talk.

<Aubrienne> Not a problem. What's the skinny?

<Argent> There was a Cold Rider sighted outside our apparment.

<Argent> Not the first time the Fae have taken an interest in the area

<Argent> and both times, Misery was visiting Dorien.

<Argent> So I got thinkin'

<Dorien> Well... it's not like she's not there most of the time... but yeah.

  • Genevriel comes over from prepping tables because Dorien called her...
  • Genevriel has a curious/this better be good since I'm supposed to be working sort of expression on her face.

<Aubrienne> You're thinking he's after her specifically?

<Argent> Misery got cut that night of the portal.

<Dorien> Maybe he's after Shadar Kai in general. Or just the ones from that night. Or maybe not. I don't know.

<Argent> My knowhow on magic isn't that great, but what if there is a connection cause of the blood.

<Genevriel> <whispered aside to Dorien> What's the topic?

<Dorien> We were wondering if you knew anything more about the situation.

<Dorien> <whispered to Gen> The Frozen rider guy...

<Argent> could there be a connection?

<Lathra> It rather seems like a lot of people are interested in our blood all of a sudden

  • Lathra says bitterly

<Argent> With Misery, or any of the other Shadar-Ki that were hurt, or even just the Shadar-Ki in general?

<Argent> You think its possible?

  • Aubrienne will pat Lathra's arm sympathetically
  • Genevriel gives Lathra a sympathetic look.
  • Lathra shakes it off

<Dorien> Sorry... didn't mean to upset you.

<Lathra> Are you suggesting that he's after her, or us, specifically because our blood was part of his ritual? It's definitely possible...

<Argent> I was thinking the ritual, myself.

<Dorien> Maybe.

<Argent> Is there a way to confirm the possibility?

<Genevriel> It makes sense... when the smaller ones attacked us at your apartment I thought something must have drawn them there. Perhaps it was Misery, though.

<Aubrienne> It seems theoretically possible.

<Aubrienne> I could look into it.

  • Dorien nods.

<Dorien> I'd appreciate it, Bri.

<Dorien> So would Misery.

<Aubrienne> Should we be, I don't know, focusing patrols or something?

<Aubrienne> Or at least warning people?

<Dorien> I don't know. We don't know anything for sure.

<Aubrienne> Not a problem, Dor. Anything for you guys. :)

<Lathra> Maybe we could put up wanted posters

<Dorien> Wanted: Ten foot asshole with horns?

<Genevriel> How about

<Genevriel> Wanted: Information leading to the apprehension and neutralization of the ten foot asshole with horns?

<Argent> I was thinking more along the lines of talking to the people here that night, see if they've noticed anything and like Aubrienne, suggested, warning them...

<Argent> while the truth of it is checked.

<Dorien> I don't want to panic them unnecessarily, though.

<Genevriel> Has anyone been able to ascertain what type of fae it is? The giant one?

<Aubrienne> It's actually called a cold rider.

<Aubrienne> Not the most imaginative title, but that's what the books call it.

  • Genevriel nods. "Thank you."

<Genevriel> (With my K:N, can I find out what could bring it under control, Julia?)

<Genevriel> (She's busy but I'm just making a note so it'll be in the logs and Gen can look into it)

<Argent> You two (nods to Lathra and Aubrienne) ok following up on the blood?

<Lathra> I'm not really sure how to go about it, to be honest. Leave a bowl on the doorstep overnight and see if it's gone in the morning?

<Aubrienne> That's certainly one way, but I have some contacts I can follow up with.

<Argent> I was thinking more along finding out if its possible and maybe some spell to detect the connection.

<Dorien> Do we know who all was affected the night of the dance? Like do we have a list?

<Aubrienne> Hmm. That kind of divination should produce a connection to the target, so there might be a way to backtrack the tether...

<Aubrienne> I'm not sure I've heard of a spell that does that, but, again, I think it's theoretically possible. I'll look into that too, Argent.

<Genevriel> There ought to be records of the guests who were injured in Mlle. Scales' records.

<Lathra> Yes! I have that, absolutely.

<Dorien> We should ask them all if they've seen anything strange.

<Genevriel> Or been attacked.

<Lathra> Or at least a ten foot asshole with horns

<Genevriel> I did look into whether other seemingly random attacks have been reported, after those small fey at your apartment. Of course there have been many reports of fey mischief throughout the city, but perhaps there is a common thread of it happening to Shadar-kai who were attacked as part of the ritual.

<Genevriel> That would have be looked into further; I didn't think to look for that in my first go-round.

<Aubrienne> Yeah, I mean, there were those other fey outside your apartment.

<Aubrienne> So it might not just be the rider.

<Dorien> Yeah

<Dorien> It's at least worth checking.

  • Genevriel nods.

<Dorien> Anyway, I don't want to keep you guys. Curtain goes up in ten. I just want to make sure we're doing everything we can.

<Genevriel> I will follow up on my earlier inquiries and see if I can uncover any commonalities.

<Dorien> Thanks.

<Argent_> who want to check on people?

<Aubrienne> I'm sure you already are after the other day, but, if this is true, even if it might be, just be extra careful Lathra. :/

<Lathra> Yes... I must admit I've become complacent since I hadn't heard an more sightings of the... Cold Rider, you called it?

<Aubrienne> Yes, cold rider. Hopefully just the one, though supposedly there are more.

<Dorien> Lathra, people might be more willing to talk to you with your standing in the community. I hate to ask, but...

<Lathra> Oh, not at all! That's much more my sort of thing than developing brand-new complicated reverse spells, at any rate.

<Dorien> Thanks.

<Dorien> Misery and I will keep an eye out too.

<Argent> If I'm free when you do talk to people, I'd like to come with you.

<Dorien> Yeah, if you want back up, let us know.

<Dorien> Or if you find anything

  • Genevriel nods.

<Genevriel> I would also like to offer my assistance, if you need it.

<Dorien> And if anyone sees anything...

  • Dorien pulls out a bunch of empty test tubes and swabs.

<Dorien> Take samples.

  • Argent suppresses a giggle

<Genevriel> ...

  • Aubrienne gladly grabs some supplies.

<Argent> Sure thing

<Argent> Not what I was expecting but sure thing

  • Lathra takes one, and pictures herself swabbing the creature

<Dorien> I'm a scientist. Its what I do. Let me feel useful.

<Aubrienne> "Scientist"

  • Aubrienne makes air quotes

<Dorien> -_-

<Dorien> "Comedian"

  • Aubrienne grins

<Dorien> ;)

<Aubrienne> It's okay, Dor. I'm sure Misery has a use for you.

<Dorien> Well... Misery loves company.

<Aubrienne> Yeah, I'm sure she's never heard that one before. :p

<Genevriel> Your company, especially.

<Genevriel> Well, I have more tables to set. Good evening, all.

  • Genevriel returns to her work.

<Dorien> See you, Gen. Thanks.

<Argent> Yeah thanks everyone for taking the time.

<Aubrienne> Happy to help.

<Lathra> Not at all

Genevriel asks August for advice on how to handle Madds

  • Genevriel hasn't spoken with August in a while, so she'll arrange to meet with him at the cabaret after one of his daytime practices.
  • Genevriel brings him some cookies she baked - not the whole batch; she had to leave some for Jerard and Sylvise since their money paid for the ingredients. ^-^

<August> (what kind? important details ;)

<Genevriel> (Shortbread, maybe?)

<August> Thank you :)

<Genevriel> You're welcome.

  • Genevriel smiles a little.
  • August takes one
  • Genevriel seems a lot more relaxed since she has moved in with her aunt and uncle.

<Genevriel> I hope you like them.

<August> How have you been doing?

<Genevriel> Oh? All right, thanks. I'm not out of the woods yet, but I feel better lately. And how about you? How are you doing?

<August> Oh, I can't complain.

  • Genevriel smiles.

<Genevriel> I'm glad.

<August> And the cookies are delicious.

  • August says once he's finished chewing

<Genevriel> Good. They're my mother's recipe. I've been looking into things a lot, lately, with Mlle. Scales' help. I thought you might be interested to hear what I've learned.

<August> Of course!

  • Genevriel will fill August in on what she's learned from various folks, finishing up with her current pursuit of books to teach her Celestial.
  • August listens with interest

<Genevriel> Do you or any of your friends speak Celestial, by any chance? Books are all very well, but they can only take one so far, so eventually it might be good to practice speaking it.

<August> Yes, we do.

<Genevriel> Well, when the time comes, if you can bear hearing someone mangle the pronunciation, it might be good.

<August> I'd be glad to help you practice, and I'm sure there are others who would as well.

  • August nods

<Genevriel> Thank you.

<Genevriel> So... there was one other thing I wanted to ask you about...

<August> Yes?

  • Genevriel fidgets nervously.
  • August takes another cookie while you work out how you want to ask ;)

<Genevriel> You're a man... so can you tell me what would be your motivation were you to have gained possession of something that belonged to a friend several years ago - a female friend, I ought to qualify - and if this thing were not something easy to move around or take care of, say... say it's an animal that is large and has to be fed and shod and things like that - anyway, you carry that animal through the war and transport it across an empire, and when you see her again you mention that you thought it was all you had left of her.

<Genevriel> Um... so is that just really, really good friendship, or maybe something more?

  • August considers the question

<August> I don't think it depends on being a man... but I think that anyone who did such a thing must have cared very much about the person who owned the animal in question.

<Genevriel> Of course it doesn't depend on whether you're male or female, you're right.

<August> Without knowing more, I think it would be hard to say whether it suggests a very strong friendship, or something more.

  • Genevriel nods, thinking.

<Genevriel> It's Madds; I'm sure you figured that out.

<August> Well, I didn't want to assume :)

<Genevriel> We were close, but neither of us ever mentioned love.

<Genevriel> I'm just scared that that's what it is.

<August> On his part, or yours?

<Genevriel> I'm worried that he might love me.

  • Genevriel clarifies, awkwardly.
  • August nods

<August> I can't tell you if he does or not. Or if perhaps he did once, and now is trying to decide how he feels under the present circumstances.

  • Genevriel nods.

<Genevriel> That's part of what I'm inwardly panicking about.

<Genevriel> I value his friendship, but if he wants more and I can't measure up, I'm afraid that he won't want to even be friends anymore.

<August> Has he said anything else, or done anything else, that is making you anxious about this?

  • Genevriel nods.

<Genevriel> Maybe, sort of.

<Genevriel> He was offering his help since I lost my pension, and he made a few suggestions about what form that help could take, but I get the feeling, maybe, that he didn't say everything he was thinking.

<Genevriel> I don't know; it was very awkward, which in itself was unusual.

<August> Well... how were things left between the two of you when you last saw him, before all this?

<Genevriel> Last saw him before the war, or...?

  • Genevriel tries to parse what August is asking.

<August> Yes, I mean before the war.

<August> I'm just wondering if any awkwardness you're sensing now might be due to him being uncertain about how things would go now, if he wasn't sure where you stood.

<Genevriel> Possibly... I don't know.

<Genevriel> I mean, I could ask him about it, of course, but... I'm scared of telling him too much, too.

<August> It's been a long time - it might take anyone a while to adjust

  • Genevriel nods.

<August> But.. if you want to keep his friendship, even if you aren't interested in more than that, I think you will need to talk to him about it sooner or later.

  • Genevriel nods, anxious tears starting up in her eyes.

<Genevriel> But is it better to do it sooner rather than later?

  • August considers

<Genevriel> And should I tell him all at once, or gradually?

<August> It seems like it upsets you, worrying about it. I would think having that out of the way would be less stressful for you. And he may be wondering, too, where you stand.

<August> But if he isn't doing things that bring the subject to the forefront, you don't need to talk about it immediately, of course.

  • Genevriel nods.

<Genevriel> I just don't want to lose him, August, and I don't even know why.

<August> Maybe for the same reason he kept your horse.

  • August suggests

<Genevriel> But I also feel kind of angry that I might have to tell him about all the things I'm working through, just to help him understand where I'm coming from.

<Genevriel> I just feel so much pressure, not just from him but also from my aunt. And neither of them mean for me to feel that way, I'm sure.

<August> Well, if what he's done is to keep your horse, which was a decision he made before he even knew you were still alive, or in the city, and offer to help you after you lost your pension, is that pressure mostly coming from yourself, and what you're expecting, rather than something concrete?

<August> Leaving aside your aunt, for the moment, since it isn't about her.

<Genevriel> Probably, but I don't know how to stop feeling that way, either.

<August> Probably the best way is to talk to him.

  • August says gently

<August> Whatever you're imagining may not be the case, and you might be worrying for no good reason. And even if he does have stronger feelings for you, it might not necessarily affect your friendship the way you're afraid it will.

  • Genevriel nods, sniffling.

<Genevriel> I think what I really want is to be able to take my time getting used to him again.

  • August nods

<August> Then tell him that.

<August> If he's your friend - or if he wants to ever be more than a friend - he ought to respect that.

<Genevriel> I will, but even if he does want me to love him, and I can, I don't know if I can be with him. I don't know what The One wants.

  • August nods

<Genevriel> And my hands... I can't touch anyone with these hands. Not that way...

  • Genevriel cries.
  • August puts his hand on your shoulder

<August> Life puts obstacles in our path - sometimes, very considerable ones.

<August> And I don't want to tell you that love can always overcome them, because that would be a lie.

<August> But at least love will always try.

  • Genevriel turns to hug August; she'll try not to ruin his shirt with leaky face juices.
  • August hugs you back

Hugo and Zola chat about fae over drinks

  • Hugonel sips his scotch-tini uncertainly, not quite sure it's the latest thing.

<Hugonel> So ... we need to talk about something.

  • Zola leans back in her seat with some sort of green apple concoction

<Zola> Well we could talk about how adorable Geff was before we sent him on his way ^_^

<Hugonel> We could ... sure! That would definitely make it easier to avoid anything more serious!

  • Zola looks at you strangely... "Oh you meant something..."

<Hugonel> Yes. Rather.

<Hugonel> Eirini came to visit me at home.

  • Zola narrows her eyes

<Zola> So Jonas got word to her?

  • Hugonel nods.

<Hugonel> It appears so. What's more, she actually listened to him. Apparently she owes him a great debt.

<Zola> Well she didn't eat your tasty tasty soul... that's good.

<Hugonel> As far as we know, she didn't. She claims to be a dryad, which if I understand things correctly, is hardly the most dangerous or malicious entity that could seduce me ... twice.

  • Zola scoffs

<Zola> I suppose she twisted your arm?

<Zola> I'm sorry I wasn't there to save you from her machinations :(

  • Hugonel laughs.

<Hugonel> I assure you it was fully consensual and pleasurable.

<Zola> Well, I guess I can't really blame you there.

<Zola> Did she tell you anything you wanted to hear?

<Hugonel> Yes, some ... and much that I did not.

<Hugonel> She serves Linthira, the Forest Queen. Her actions that night were motivated by revenge for Radstock's actions during the war.

  • Zola sips her sickly sweet cocktail...

<Zola> So it was her.

<Zola> That bitch.

<Zola> We were closed for a week!

<Hugonel> But the location, at the cabaret, was more than a coincidence. Underneath the building, the river flows, and there is a sacred site there, holy to the fey.

<Hugonel> That is why Jonas is there, and why the Cold Rider appeared there.

<Zola> Did you figure out if Linthira is ... uh, in one piece?

<Hugonel> She remarked only that here in the city, she can be close to her, which is why she has stayed.

<Zola> Sounds a little... passive.

<Zola> I suppose you forgot to ask much after a certain point -_-

<Hugonel> I did inquire some more about the broader context of what is happening here.

<Zola> Oh?

<Hugonel> The three factions, namely the forest fey, the cold fey, and the fungal fey, if we can use that division, roughly. I don't know where Klara and those fit into this typology, precisely.

<Hugonel> She noted that the Cold Rider is all that is keeping the fungus at bay.

<Hugonel> Which she calls the Blight.

<Zola> Oh, I suppose!

<Zola> Who'd have thought the weather outside could be a good thing.

  • Hugonel nods.

<Hugonel> She suggests that we ought to be afraid of Klara, particularly of her giving us any gifts of any sort.

<Zola> Is that accidental? I didn't read anything nice about them...

<Hugonel> Sorry, is what accidental?

<Zola> The Cold Rider keeping the fungus at bay...

<Hugonel> No, I don't think so.

<Hugonel> It's a battle that crosses both our realm and the First World, much bigger even than anything going on here in the city.

<Zola> So maybe it's keeping the fungus at bay... but not for us?

<Hugonel> I think we can safely say that none of this is *for* us. Rather, I'd say that Diablotin is contested foreign territory and we have several enormous otherworldly powers fighting over a scrap of valuable land that has some precious commodity.

<Zola> Ugh.

<Zola> As for Klara, she probably means her little vampire tokens...

  • Hugonel nods.

<Hugonel> Oh, and perhaps this isn't relevant, but : Eirini's hair was pure white.

<Hugonel> She says it changes with the seasons

<Zola> Ohhh, how charming... pure white?

<Zola> I wonder how that would look with my complexion.

  • Hugonel nods.

<Hugonel> And white all over.

<Zola> :o

  • Hugonel says with a smirk.
  • Zola tries to imagine

<Zola> Is it green in spring, you think?

<Hugonel> I'll let you know.

<Zola> Ha!

<Zola> Will that put you off at all, do you think?

<Hugonel> Zola! How dare you suggest such a thing!

  • Hugonel remarks playfully.

<Zola> Also, I can't approve... she trashed the club!

<Zola> She could have stuck him in an alley or something, but she didn't... she wrecked our week!

<Hugonel> I agree, deeply offensive.

  • Hugonel says, not fully sounding like he believes it.

<Zola> Well it's not like we asked him to burn down that forest :/

  • Hugonel laughs.

<Zola> Did she confirm that's what it was, that he destroyed the irminsul somehow?

  • Hugonel nods.

<Hugonel> She said that his spellcasters drained its power and then he burned it to the ground.

<Zola> :o

<Hugonel> She didn't use the word 'irminsul', just 'a sacred place'

<Zola> So he knew?

<Zola> Well shit, that's not very good for us with her boss...

<Hugonel> I don't know what he knew.

<Zola> Well he wasn't just burning out rebels.

<Hugonel> Right.

<Hugonel> Or so she said. Look, Zola, she's a comely woman but I haven't forgotten who and what she is. Most of what she said seemed to be the whole truth. But it may be coming from her own slant.

<Zola> Well, Eirlys did think the irminsul couldn't have been destroyed by a simple fire :/

<Zola> Maybe if Linthira is nearby we can get an apology to her from the Emperor?

<Hugonel> I... have no idea.

<Hugonel> There was one other thing.

<Zola> Good or bad?

<Hugonel> Bad, I think.

  • Zola frowns
  • Zola downs the rest of her cocktail

<Zola> Sock it to me.

<Hugonel> I asked her about ... the vision I had with Sirris recently, the red-haired woman from my past.

<Hugonel> With the wings and the skull face.

<Zola> ... skull face? D:

<Hugonel> Well, it wasn't like that at the time. Or ... well, it was like, after I made love to her, there was a moment in Sirris' vision, where she had a skull for a face and colorful wings.

<Hugonel> I promise that unlike green hair, that *would* have been a turn-off at the time.

<Zola> Oh, no wonder you were so rattled by this all!

<Zola> What'd she say??

<Hugonel> She was ... well, she was herself quite rattled when I mentioned her.

<Hugonel> She indicated that it was a creature of great power, who may have ... laid a claim on me.

<Hugonel> She didn't know what kind of entity it was, though, or even if it has a name.

<Hugonel> But she didn't know much more.

<Zola> She must have some sort of inkling, not to discount it as a fever dream or something...

<Zola> We can look through the books at Xandhil's again, yeah?

  • Hugonel nods, clearly unsettled.

<Hugonel> At any rate, I think I acquitted myself quite well after our conversation, so I think I could see her again if I wanted to.

  • Zola reaches across the little table to stroke your cheek. "We'll find out who's been troubling you, so we can tell her to screw."

<Hugonel> Anyway ... that's all. Thought I should let you know. Do you think we should let others know?

<Zola> Some of it, surely...

<Zola> If they haven't already thought of it... the fact the Cold Rider is holding back the Blight should certainly make it to the Emperor's ears

<Zola> I don't know about Eirini though...

<Hugonel> I think she saw what she was doing as an act of war, not of murder. I can see her point.

<Zola> I know, but that might be worse...

<Hugonel> We have to keep her out of this. At least out of the eye of anyone official. She's one of our only reliable sources of information.

<Zola> Are you sure we shouldn't tell Tits? She might know if her father will be sensible about it...

<Hugonel> ... yes, that makes sense.

<Zola> If we're going to make it up to her and her lady, we can't string her up for it...

  • Zola looks relieved.

<Zola> Not that I forgive her for her method :/

<Hugonel> The fact that Eirini and Jonas appear to be friends or allies gives me some comfort.

<Zola> Why?

<Zola> Just because Tits trusts him?

<Hugonel> And because Eirini and Jonas both said the same thing about Klara, and because we know Jonas and he's never done wrong by us.

<Zola> Yet. >_>

<Hugonel> I'm not saying that I fully trust them, only that it puts my mind somewhat at ease.

<Zola> It's good they haven't said anything bad about Vernel still... I'm planning to wear that gorgeous dress to my party and I'd hate to learn it's going to turn me into a bat or something.

  • Hugonel laughs.

<Hugonel> You would of course be a gorgeous bat, Zola my dear.

<Zola> But I don't want to be a bat.

<Zola> I guess the connection to Tits through Jonas isn't bad for something like peace talks is it?

<Zola> Could be worse?

<Hugonel> I ... don't know. Am I going to be asked to mediate international diplomacy

<Hugonel> ?

<Zola> Actually that is better... than Jonas...

<Hugonel> Hmmm?

<Zola> Well, we don't know his motivations, right?

<Hugonel> We don't. And?

<Zola> I don't know!

<Zola> I just meant that it's not like there's a whole lot of gaps there between the Emperor and Linthira.

  • Hugonel nods.

<Hugonel> Well ... we can tell Tits, or I can, or whatever. And see where things go from there.

  • Zola nods

<Zola> I hope nothing happens at the wedding, or my party...

<Zola> Well, nothing involving murderous fairies at least.

<Zola> I've got Theo's mum all lined up to play me, while I'm doing a couple songs as Mico ... Denise'll like that.

  • Hugonel nods.

<Hugonel> You sly devil, what with all your wiles.

  • Zola eyes you oddly... "I'm not trying to get into her pants."
  • Hugonel laughs.

<Hugonel> That's not what I meant, but I'll take your word for it.

<Zola> I just think it'll be fun...

<Zola> Oh! I didn't tell you about the news... Hector's got me on the Red Lion Dance Hour, with that single I've been working on!

<Zola> There's a catch, but it's not too bad... an interview as Mico...

<Hugonel> Oh, that's great!

<Zola> With luck, it'll be a hit!

<Hugonel> No doubt, it'll be a hit!

<Zola> I'm not quite as good as Theo at that, but we'll see :)

<Zola> Oh gods... they want an exclusive with his new single too... and Theo wants to use trolly clanging ;_;

<Hugonel> Well, maybe you can negotiate on that point.

<Zola> I think that trolley's ... trawled on?

<Zola> And it is starting to get a little catchy >_>

<Hugonel> All right, now this conversation is just getting silly.

<Zola> Well we can't stay all skull-faced and dire all day ^_^

  • Hugonel laughs.

<Hugonel> Let's think about weddings instead. Much more festive.

<Zola> They'll be so adorable ^_^

  • Zola natters on about how well you picked the suit, etc.

<Zola> Now...

  • Zola rolls all the thigns to see if she can find out what a rainbowwing skullfacer is.

<Zola> :V