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Written By Calista

Oct. 9, 2016, 11:22 p.m.(10/18/1004 AR)

Relationship Note on Niccolo

Duke Niccolo was part of my "task" this evening at the Gala of Smoke and Shadows. Initially I was going to steal Duchess Nadia but his grace asked me to dance and the moment was simply perfect. My task was to dance with someone blindfolded. I could have easily blindfolded myself and felt my way around the room, but I thought it would be more interesting to have my lead and my liege be the blindfolded individual.

He did wonderfully even if he just barely missed running into wine serving servants. Chances are I would not have felt as comfortable or as safe were it someone else.

Written By Valkieri

Oct. 9, 2016, 11:20 p.m.(10/18/1004 AR)

Relationship Note on Dawn

I found myself looking to Lady Dawn more often that I would have liked at the Velenosan gala tonight. The party was miserable -- or I was miserable -- but the time we spent dancing was certainly the...highlight of the evening. She is poised, capable--

--and an unacknowledged bastard. She rules the kingdom for now, but her situation is more precarious than anyone else's I can think of. A wise woman to befriend, yes, but not, I think...

*released black journal as stipulated by the will of the deceased*

Written By Calista

Oct. 9, 2016, 11:19 p.m.(10/18/1004 AR)

Relationship Note on Jarek

I was not sure what to make of Prince Jarek Velenosa the first time we met. Admittedly, I was not expecting him and felt awkwardly fake when entertaining him. Our second meeting was short lived but it was tonight at the Gala of Smoke and Shadows (or Shadows and Smoke) that he took me by surprise with an invitation to dance which then utterly swept me off from the dance floor and out to the world to explore the night.

A passionate man, he's given me much to think about.

Written By Dagon

Oct. 9, 2016, 11:16 p.m.(10/18/1004 AR)

Relationship Note on Esera

The Archduchess put together quite the gala this evening. I'm uncertain if it was her or her sister that made me sing that song as my task for the evening, but it was amusing and I enjoyed my time there.

I look forward to the next grand event planned by her and House Velenosa.

Written By Dagon

Oct. 9, 2016, 11:15 p.m.(10/18/1004 AR)

Relationship Note on Nadia

The Duchess was quite stunning tonight at the Gala. I find spending time with her to be rather refreshing, especially as it lets my thoughts drift away from my duties, but only for a time. I look forward to seeing what plans she and Margot come up with together for a dinner between House Thrax and House Redrain.

Written By Freja

Oct. 9, 2016, 11:14 p.m.(10/18/1004 AR)

Relationship Note on Fergus

The longer I am here the more I realize how heavily we lean on one another. The question is, do we break free and learn to stand better on our own two feet or use it as a fount of strength to draw inspiration from?

I worry for him, but that is a younger sister's folly rather than the sound and right-minded concerns of a sensible person.

Written By Freja

Oct. 9, 2016, 11:07 p.m.(10/18/1004 AR)

Relationship Note on Kima

I have now drank and danced with the Lady, oddly enough both times in the company of Audric. He is an encouraging fellow, but the Lady is rumored to have a good wine. I'll indulge, as long as her charming company is allowed.

Written By Talen

Oct. 9, 2016, 11:06 p.m.(10/18/1004 AR)

Relationship Note on Ophelia

I found another dead gull in the hallway today. I'm pretty sure this is Ophelia's latest toy forgotten in a moment of flighty ditziness. I might bring back a boar's head and leave it in her room next time I'm done hunting. Let's see if she approves of my reciprocation of her familial love.

Written By Rook

Oct. 9, 2016, 10:07 p.m.(10/18/1004 AR)

In hopes of providing the Whisper House with all the resources they need to retain their reputation as the elite guild of companions, I have gifted them a force of armoured sellswords to use as chaperones in moments that require them.

In the interest of ensuring that clientele do not run off screaming I have encouraged them to remain in uniform; gold and white tabards, tailored to suit their function.

They've been acquired from the Crimson Blades after negotiation with Lord General Tobias Telmar himself. So far their service has been satisfactory.

I pray they'll never need to uncover their blades to prove their professionalism in securing a Whisper's safety.

Written By Talen

Oct. 9, 2016, 9:46 p.m.(10/18/1004 AR)

The gala this week was themed for challenges and trickery. My task was of little interest and therefore I did not play. The archduchess claims I am a bore and in that I must confess that yes, sometimes, I am.

How fortuitous then that I was able to entertain the Lord Rubino, and his companionable co-ruler of Gemecitta, Lady Zaffria.

Written By Sudara

Oct. 9, 2016, 8:18 p.m.(10/18/1004 AR)

Umbra: an intriguing (though perhaps somewhat odd) thing to have found myself contemplating. The mystical material of shadow and beauty provides obvious sartorial temptations for one who finds herself attending the grandest court of the land (of the world?) while clad in mourning garb. But how much more is there to it, when one finds oneself peering into shadows, mixing awe and wonderment with surprise at how much more there seems to be beyond the surface? Throw in expense, difficulty of acquisition, and an incomprehension of how it came to be - and one has all the more to muse upon in relation to the times in which we now live.

Written By Isolde

Oct. 9, 2016, 8:15 p.m.(10/18/1004 AR)

Relationship Note on Gareth

It astonishes me how much my relationship with Prince Inquisitor Gareth has developed. He was one of my first friends in Arx and, despite the Saga of the Tea Set, I feel it continues to be a delight for both of us. I'll have to think of something as memorable as that gift for the next time.

Written By Aislin

Oct. 9, 2016, 7:37 p.m.(10/18/1004 AR)

Relationship Note on Dawn

Lady Dawn, the current Voice of House Grayson, is an interesting woman. Every impression I have of her is one of someone who is very controlled and politically adept, yet who it seems is not as accepted as she could be due to a circumstance of birth.

Any achievement of hers will likely be justified by others as the work of her advisors and comrades. Yet any stumble, any perceived fault, will be taken as a personal failing and proof that her birth makes her unsuitable for the role.

Which strikes me as ridiculous, but I suppose it's not my field; I'd much rather spend my time uncovering the past, preferably as far away from politics as I can manage.

Written By Sudara

Oct. 9, 2016, 7:19 p.m.(10/18/1004 AR)

Relationship Note on Ianthe

A foundling, rescued by my husband long before we met. But having plucked her from the sea, he maintained an active interest in her. Back then, he was formally Abandoned - but she was a child of the Compact. I wonder quite what her legal status was, during that time? In any case, he maintained an interest in her, and she developed into an intriguing young woman.

Written By Esera

Oct. 9, 2016, 5:13 p.m.(10/18/1004 AR)

Relationship Note on Augustus

I have known him all my life, and all my life he has been a pillar -- something solid and certain, even when the world around me was not. I remember him, from a child's eyes, as ... Historic. A man who had seen and been a part of so much history. I am no longer that little girl, but he is still that pillar, and although I wish he could have lived the rest of his days in peace in Lenosia, I am glad to have him here in Arx. No man is ever free from duty.

Written By Kima

Oct. 9, 2016, 4:32 p.m.(10/18/1004 AR)

Relationship Note on Audric

It occurs to me that the previous entry reads in such a way that others might believe I've had men tell me to wear bags at all, ever.

Such is not the case.

Audric is the first.

Written By Kima

Oct. 9, 2016, 4:30 p.m.(10/18/1004 AR)

Relationship Note on Audric

I've never had a man quite so politely - and in a decidedly round about manner, it should be noted - suggest that I should wear a bag.

The bag is really very nice, though. Might actually be the best I've ever seen.

Written By Kima

Oct. 9, 2016, 3:47 p.m.(10/17/1004 AR)

It has been some time since my last entry pertaining to the tale that would eventually bring me to Arx. Today I shall write of the woman many saw as a mysterious oddity, though to me she was a close friend and staunch ally. Her name was Yinali, she was born on the island of Setarco, though neither of her parents were natives to that wild place. With midnight-hued skin and hair, and these gorgeous amber eyes, it was no wonder that men found her bewitching. Yinali had a rich contralto of a voice that often had people stop to listen to her simply for the sake of listening.

-----

The dark woman fanned herself as she lounged upon a chaise. The air was thick and sticky, with the promise of an afternoon storm. Kima did not watch her, but rather stared lazily at the man across from Yinali, noting the scar that across the bridge of his nose.

"We will pay you fifteen hundred for each man now, and fifteen hundred upon return," she said, her tone of voice very 'take it or leave it.'

"Two thousand," the man countered, determined. "You know that we are the best. No other mercenary band has ventured as far or as often us." Kima took a drink, and found herself smiling when he said again, confidently, "We are the best."

"Not true, the captain's man of Lascala's Jovial Bunch told me just the other night that they've ranged as far as where we want to go. That's important to my friends and I. What's more, I know they'd settle for one thousand per man." Yinali continued to fan herself, silently praying for the moment when she could enjoy fresh coastal air rather than being confined to some cramped, muggy tavern.

"They'd settle for one thousand because they'd stab you in the back and leave you for dead just as soon as you were out of civilized land. You know that, I know that. Eighteen hundred and my captain will sign off on your contract. He's a Southport vet," he saluted, fist to chest. Veterans of the acclaimed Southport military were held in high regard by the citizens of the City of Swords, and abroad. "As am I. We're worth it."

Yinali snapped her fan closed, smiled at the man, and got to her feet. She was a considerably tall woman, more so than many men. Some found it off-putting, but Kima could see the appreciation in his eyes as he took in Yinali's graceful frame. "Eighteen," she said, tapping her fan upon his broad, thick shoulder. "Tell your captain we agree to pay eighteen hundred. Meet with me again tomorrow at this time, at the bank where we'll settle up. Be sure to tell the captain we'll be ready to leave in three days."

-----

Of honorable mention are captain Salandri and his right hand man, Dexio. They ran a small but competent group of mercenaries - Gloria's Roamers. They lived storied lives, as is chronicled elsewhere, and met ignominious deaths. The job they took with us would be their last. The Roamers are no more, stricken from the record.

Written By Aldwin

Oct. 9, 2016, 2:22 p.m.(10/17/1004 AR)

Relationship Note on Rook

Master Rook Grayward brightened my morning when he stopped by the shrine and talked for a time. He is quick of word and wit, and it should be interesting to see where the two take him.

Written By Darren

Oct. 9, 2016, 2:06 p.m.(10/17/1004 AR)

Relationship Note on Morrighan

The tailor bear of the North. This one has talent, and she serves House Redrain well.

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