Thrax Open Court (and free food)
Sept. 16, 2018, 6 p.m.
Arx - Ward of House Thrax - Thrax Courtyard
Comments and Log
Maxene, Pellinor, 4 Thrax Guards, Honey Snuggle, a Velenosian Angora cat arrive, following Alarissa.
3 Tyde Houseguard arrives, following Lethe.
3 Thrax Guards arrives, following Jasher.
Orre, 5 Grimhall House Guards arrive, following Harald.
Puff, a dainty yellow-green canary, 2 Leary House Guards arrive, following Arcadia.
The courtyard that holds most of the greenery of Thrax's estate has been set up with extra chairs and tables for a night out on its porch. Victus Thrax himself is set up by the table closest to the portion of the courtyard that's been cleared for dancing, leaned against a table with a ludicrous selection of alcohol all spread about. His arms are crossed over his chest as he watches the heavily armed and armored guards welcome the guests inside with their thousand-yard stares. "Good evening all of you." He eventually calls over the mingling between servants, nobles and commoner alike. "Tonight will serve as an open forum for the ruling house of the Mourning Isles, House Thrax. Times right now are peaceful in the Isles themselves. For the most party, anyway. So you won't hear me prattling on up here about what next threat to lives exists like the sky is falling. But even in peace, there are those who would muck it up nonetheless. Piracy remains and on the rise in the Mourning sea. Something that I may well be speaking of in depth later on."
The High Lord raises a hand. "For now, mingle. There's clams, squid, shark, all kinds of stuff freshly seared for your enjoyment. Rum, mead, vodka, whiskey, from all corners of the Isles. Pick your poison and relax a little."
Seryna, a charming Lycene handmaiden, 6 Grimhall House Guards arrive, following Vanora.
Did someone say free food? Because Caspian is here and he's ready to eat. As soon as he steps into the courtyard he's looking around for the food, and once he finds it, he goes straight for the clams, scooping up one to nom at. Omnomnom.
Alarissa has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Caspian has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Jasher strides into the courtyard with long, sure steps. There's not an inch of skin to be shown on him below face level; beneath the serpent-emblazoned coat he wears, his tunic's all black and blue embroidery, with a collar and silver buttons up to his throat. Distinctly formal, almost military. The man's expression is distinctly impassive even as free food and drink's waved around, fare to tempt anyone of discerning taste.
Bashira has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
2 Grimhall House Guards, Gustav, a gruff Islander advisor arrive, following Valdemar.
Having spent most of his adult years in Thrax, while Jophiel may not be a Thraxian in name, he knows enough to come and enjoy the festivities and mix and mingle with the elite of Thraxian society. It's no secret that he once nearly married into the house but negotiation fell through as he takes up a whisky of Tyde to drink from and starts to load his plate with a few fingerfoods of the rawer variety.
Jasher has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Victus has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Jophiel has joined the a cleared portion of the courtyard for dancing.
Jacinthe, Arindais, a dour-looking Scholar arrive, following Sina.
Bashira is a bit late, but she was on a boat for a few. So it involved running to get here. The woman with the wealth of black hair slows her pace as she hits the gates and she smoothes a hand over her tunic and then her hair, but she gives up on that. She looks about and then spots her brother over at a table full of rum. Imagine that.
Rosalie has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Vanora arrives arm in arm with her husband, dressed in a gown that seems a balance of Lycene and Isles aesthetics, the stormy seasilk setting off her pale skin. The rest of the Grimhall contigent is either ahead of not far behind, and the first thing the Lady and her husband do is approach the Grim Duke, whom she greets with a warm smile. Leaning in close she murmurs something in the grizzled warrior-Duke's ear, before glancing about with pale green eyes to take in the surroundings.
The first indication of Arcadia is her head poking over the refreshment table, fingers plucking out the more exotic and interesting foodstuffs -- shark, squid, et cetera. A few clams are piled on the side of her plate as well, and she pours herself out a greedy helping of honey-hued mead, which gets a long and curious sniff before she's sipping at it experimentally.
Arcadia has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Alarissa is at the table with Victus, seated by his side and looking as usual, every inch the Princess Consort. Sporting... yet another another rounded midriff. Some months along. When he speaks up, her attention is one him, a cup of tea before her and when everyone is bid to have fun, her attention goes to Caspian. "Master Wild. It is our delight to have been able to gift you. I am as well, seeing that some more children will find their freedom in your name. Something I intend to start doing as natalities of those we consider friends, draw close each year."
Jasher stalks around the tables to head for the table with food. He stocks up on some snacks, mainly of the persuasion needing either one of Thraxian bent or extremely adventurous tastes to enjoy, though he does pick a few aimed for more conventional palates. Once he's done his reaving of the free food, he heads for the refreshment table to get himself a glass of rum.
Sina makes her way quietly into the Thrax courtyard where Victus is holding court. The young priestess is wearing her favorite robe, over her leathers. She glances about with curious silvery eyes as she arrives, just a tad late for the start of things. She lingers in the background though, hovering a little uncertainly. The former Thrax handmaiden scans those gathered for familiar faces, her gaze watchful and attentive, even though she doesn't mingle very much. Still shy and quiet in a large gathering, she edges her way toward the refreshment tables eventually.
After they approach his father, Valdemar bows his head slightly in greeting to the Grim Duke. The Grimhall heir is dressed in lighter colors, though still in the simple manner associated with the Mourning Isles. "Good evening, Father," he tells Harald, before taking a look around the courtyard himself.
Having arrived early, Rosalie has been moving around here and there until things got underway, but once they have, she heads for the table where she can find Alarissa, curtseying to the High Princess and High Lord before moving to find herself something non-alcoholic to drink. Once obtained, she heads back to Alarissa's seat, standing ready to fetch and carry for the pregnant woman. Leaning in, she mrumurs something to Alarissa, smiling and giggling softly.
With mingling underway and no immediate concerns being brought forth, Victus goes to do that... mingling thing. He's of course bee-lining for the rum table first, hands in his pockets and coronet resting safely atop his head to denote his station. "Grandmaster Caspian. Haven't heard from you in a hot minute, how goes your work with the Liberators of late?" He reaches over the table to get a bottle of rum as soon as he's speaking, drawing out the biggest one he can find. "I was thinking that-Ow, fuck." There comes a small 'tap, tap, taptaptap' from below. Victus' eyes trailing down to the culprit. The little Astrid Thrax, dressed in seasilks and smacking her father in the shins with a little wooden axe. He casts her a disapproving look, but the point definitely isn't received. "- I was thinking that we haven't heard much from them in a bit either."
Harald Grimhall enters alone, save for the bevy of guards that accompany seemingly without his noticing. He does notice what family of his is here though, and he returns Valdemar's nod with one of his own. "Son, daughter." He remains unseated for the moment, arms at his side and eyes passing over the crowd.
Lethe chooses a few different foods and a drink before looking around. She smiles and looks to those she knows with a wave before taking a moment to enjoy her food.
Not long after her cousin and his wife arrive in the Courtyard, Sanya Grimhall enters dressed in a sleevless deep purple silk gown. She glances about the place, taking in her surroundings with sapphire eyes, before approaching her relatives. "Good evening, uncle, Valdemar, Vanora." Her greeting is followed by a kind smile.
Vanora glances towards the large table where many are already seated, pressing her lips together slightly as snippets of conversations are overheard and casting a glance towards the Grim Duke to gauge his expression that she hopes is incredibly subtle. "Let us find some seats and have a drink or two, Father Harald? Lubricate the the mood yes?" She even starts to lightly steer her husband that way and takes a glass of rum to sip at. "Sanya, so good to see you darling. You look beautiful."
"In my name?" Ask Caspian back to Alarissa, brows lifting, looking to the woman in a bit confusion as he grabs some rum to drink. "While that sounds great, I'm afraid I'm not really sure why more children are being freed in my name. Are you taking up some of the reforms I suggested?" He looks over to Victus next, then down to the little princess, laughing as he says, "I think she's trying to cut you down to her size!" After that, he looks back up to Victus, "I'll admit my attention has been taken as of late by The Lodge. But I think we should meet some time when the three of us are free and possibly come up with the next set of reforms Thrax can at least implement themselves?" He wonders back to Victus and Alarissa hopefully. "I understand wanting to move slow and deliberately, but it might be worth considering."
Arcadia seems rather casual in her demeanor; not to mention her dress. She's not decked out in the usual gold-sparkled gowns she usually dons for events. She's here for food -- strange food she's never had before. A little bit of everything is tried, and the shark is of particular interest to her as she nibbles at her collection of ocean oddities. Even if her nose crinkles in disgust, or her expression turns to a grimace, she seems to be enjoying her samplings with that usual curious spirit of hers. She notices Prince Jasher nearby, and smiles at him, hands delicately balancing plate and drink as she approaches him. "Prince Jasher," she greets, "I believe I must've fallen asleep during your tale. I closed my eyes in the salon, and awoke in my chambers."
Food and booze? That's not precisely why Helia's here, but it doesn't hurt. She'll be there in her capacity as family and/or retainer to any Tydes or RedTydes, keeping an eye open, doing the social thing if required. In any case, she looks quite relaxed as she strolls further into the courtyard, the sword on her belt only there because it's always there. Giving a bow to the hosts along with the appropriate greetings, she heads afterwards to the refreshments, where she picks up a mug of something that smells like rum. Then she plucks up a skewer of some kind of fried fish, crispy golden around the edges of the skin. Sip sip from the mug, then nibble nibble around the edge of the skewered flesh with careful nips of her teeth. She watches her surroundings idly with dark eyes, watching watching watching. Smiles and bows as appropriate are given to all the people she knows, If Helia's ill at ease, she's hiding it well.
Somewhere in the aforementioned Grimhall contingent is Karina Seabright. Vanora's new lady in waiting, done up in seasilk green with a pink flower on the bodice and her hair scraped into a fluffy, golden-brown tail, looks all kinds of unsure of herself (as befits someone who's barely been in Arx a few weeks), but she keeps her back straight and her chin up despite the generally downcast eyes, making a palpable effort to be, ah... dignified. But not too dignified. Medium dignity seems about right, here.
The silent Prince John, arrives as quiet as he has always been. He dips his head respectfully to those who are already there. Then as quiet as before, he approaches Coraline, a grin on his features, "Hello, Princess Coraline." Then he pretty much looks at the others as they come.
Vanora has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Helia has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Lethe has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
John has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Jasher looks at Arcadia as she approaches him. "Lady Leary," he greets cordially, and walks towards the benches lining the southern wall to extricate himself from the crowd. As he walks, he takes a strip of seal meat from his plate, still raw and glistening, and nibbles on it.
Valdemar has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Jasher has left the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Jasher has joined the seating along the southern wall.
"Astrid." Alarissa speaks up, rising from her seat to take a few steps and take the nearly two year old by the hand. "Hand over the axe. You'll not hit your father or you will go back to the nursery with your brother." Voice firm, no room for argument in the least. There's a gesture for Genaile to move forward and deal with her daughter so she can answer Caspian, extending her arm to Rosalie for the woman to stand with her if she wants. "The reforms that have been taken have remained the ones that are already instituted. Any further reforms will need to wait till we see how the current ones progress as well as how things progress with the rebuilt territories and their choices. But I am confidant that you will understand. We must balance the needs of all. As civil war would be undesireable. Yes?" She looks to new arrivals and then to coraline before reaching back to take her tea and look to see how Astrid's getting now. Still with the axe in hand much to Alarissa's... delight.
Karina has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Sanya has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
As others claim a place at the refreshment table, Jophiel retreats from the crowd and takes to the edge of the area cleared out for dance. For the moment, the young diplomat listening to some of the discussion on the thralls with open interest, but for now has not offered an opinion in one way of the other.
Once settled in next to Valdemar at the large table, Vanora takes a drink from her glass of rum. A hefty one, especially considering that rum isn't quite her spirit of choice. Conversation wafts around her, but she cannot help but stiffen at a part of it, again glancing almost nervously from the Grim Duke to her husband before lowering her eyes towards the table and pretending to be fascinated with it.
Bashira finds herself a seat at the table where all the rum is and takes one. But she's decidedly quiet, like she tends to be unless called upon. She does seem to be looking around for someone else now that Caspian has been spotted.
Sanya beams at the compliment, moving with her family towards the table. "That is very kind of you to say. Although, I have you to thank. And you look marvelous yourself, if you didn't already know." Taking a seat, she pours herself a glass of rum, sipping quietly. Her brow furrows slightly as she turns to Vanora again. "Is all well?"
While Victus' shins are more or less intact, clearly his mood is not as the little heiress gets a quick lecture from mother bear. He's almost too smug as Astrid gets a stern talking to, in plenty immature fashion. Though business calls so his eyes flash back to Caspian. "As my wife says, the envelope is pushed quite far with our current set of reformations. It's a slippery slope to continue to do so without treading too closely on our vassal's sovereignty. But I think focus on more active projects such as Thursday's Child are very important right now. There's no reform that can eliminate all children currently still indebted without radical response." The High Lord replied, keeping an eye over his shoulder for the lurking princess again. "It would certainly be excellent to have more benefactors, as each silver grants some more time for kids to be kids. Speaking of-" Astrid is on the charge, and this time her father is quick enough to grab her by the back of her dress and hoist her up. She repeats a very poor 'fuuuck' as she's scooped.
Noticing someone in the group, Jophiel's attention rises. As a servant passes by, he scribes a brief note and has it placed with a glass of wine that is in turn delivered to Lethe at the refreshment table.
Would you care to dance?
Lord Jophiel Bisland.
If she happens to glance over, Jophiel will offer the Tyde lady a brief wave and a smile.
Harald appears to consider Vanora's questions for a moment, and when whatever calculus finishes, he nods once and accompanies her and Valdemar to the table to have a seat. He offers a nod in the direction of the hosts Alarissa and Victus as he does so. "Indeed, no one would wish for a civil war."
Harald has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Lethe is enjoying a bite of food when the note and wine is brought to her. She reads the note and looks around briefly before spotting Jophiel. Still carrying her plate she makes her way to the dance floor.
Lethe has left the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Lethe has joined the a cleared portion of the courtyard for dancing.
Rosalie moves with Alarissa, stepping towards the High Lord and offering to take Astrid from her father with a grin. Apparently happy to keep the Thrax heir occupied with games and tickles and seeking out some snacks appropriate for the toddler. "Your Grace, I can take her. We'll go find something to nibble on and maybe a game to play to keep little hands occupied with something other than axes... for a minute." She giggles and grins up at the tiny toddler dangling from her father's grip.
At some point Helia has picked some manner of napkin, and is wiping the grease from her lips having polished off her fishy treat. She wanders over to Coraline, still dabbing at her mouth, then hands off the piece of cloth to a servant, smiling pleasantly. One more swig of rum is taken to wash down the last morsel, then she grins at the princess. No fish between her teeth, thank the gods! "Princess Coraline. So good to see you!" She dips into a bow to John, then, and says, "Ah! Did you enjoy any of the cake? Helia Andrasko, at your service." Dark eyes cast a look at both Coraline and John, as though she's unaware of how to address the latter. What's his title, seems to be the unspoken question.
Sina procures herself a glass of something with a bit of alcohol, probably rum, and takes a little sip from it, glancing around again. She dips her head respectfully toward Victus, though as is usually the case with her, she doesn't speak to him directly. She gives Vanora a smile and a nod of her head as well in greeting. Eventually her eyes fall on Alarissa, and she makes her way over toward the Princess-Consort, a soft smile on her lips as she dips her head respectfully. "Your Highness," she greets. "How goes the building of the shrine? Is there anything else the Faith may do to assist?" She offers a smile and a dip of her head to Rosalie as well. "Congratulations on your recent nuptials, my lady," she adds.
"Oh of course. I'm quite fine." Vanora responds to Sanya with a smile, the veneer of court etiquette practically visible on her flesh. She continues to listen to conversation around her, speaking up when the High Lord does after giving a deferential dip of her head in greeting, the closest thing to a curtsy one can manage while already seated. "I do hope that the hundreds of thousands that House Grimhall raised for the cause in our own lands has been of use. The inheritance of thrall debts by children is surely something we can all agree need be done away with, even the most traditional families." Washed down with more rum.
Caspian lets out a laugh back to Astrid, looking quite amused by antics of the child, grinning to Victus. "Well then, if it's Thursday's Child you want to focus on, I have a plan for an event I was going to run. A talent show, I was going to announce it later today, and I was going to solicite donations for The Liberators, but I can also add Thursday's Child to it," he decides with a few nods given to the High Lord." Turning to Rosalie, he smiles and waves, saying, "Congradulations on getting married!" Looking over to Sina, he turns back to Victus, saying, "I won't take anymore of your time. I'll focus on more charity events benfitting current and former thralls for now. If I get any ideas I'll write to you and your wife." With that, he steps aside to Sina can speak without him stealing attention.
Finishing off his own plate of food, Jophiel offers Lethe a warm smile when she approaches. "I remember that you had written to me. This could be a good time to continue to get acquainted?" he asks her as he sets aside his plate. "When you are finished, of course." thought to add, as he works on finishing off his own whisky
Always a challenge; Cady follows Jasher's steps, undeterred by his taciturn nature. She smiles up him, bubbly as ever, her sunshine-y essence his very antithesis. "Which is that?" she wonders, watching the Prince nibble at the strip of seal. She glances down at her own plate of assorted meats for something similar, and settles in beside Jasher by the benches -- she's drawn to him, for whatever reason.
Arcadia has left the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Arcadia has joined the seating along the southern wall.
Her daughter said Fuck. Alarissa's face falls and eyes widen at Astrids choice of words. "Victus Thrax." She shoots daggers at him. But just as swiftly there's a nod to Rosalie's offer to take the girl and Sina's making herself known. There's a press of her lips to her former handmaiden's greeting. "A delight to see you. You must come see the Atrium after this. It has been completed and now we are tending to it's blessings. So lovely, even the fish are in." She spots Bashira and smiles. "How are you?" Leaving matters Grimhall to Victus.
Jasher watches the Thrax interfamily drama that Victus is involved in with an impassive expression. Maybe he's glad he's not the one who has to handle a hellion of a daughter who evidently learned to swear at her tender young age.
"Prince John Grayson." John informs Helia. "Nice to meat you Helia." While he speaks he takes a bottle of wine and serves a glass. He rises it up close to his nose, moves it a bit. Then sets it down. "I don't believe we have met aside from today." He states to Helia as he rises the glass and drinks from it a sizable quantity.
Returning Vanora's smile, Sanya nods at her reassurances, leaving it at that. Another sip of rum and she glances at the hosts of the open court, smiling pleasantly. "Your Grace, your Highness, thank you for hosting this event. I am grateful to be here."
Bashira looks to John for a moment and then Alarissa gets her attention and there's a bow of her head to her, "Your Highness." she smiles to her. "I'm doing alright. How have you been doing?" she asks her. There's a look towards the little girl who Victus has scooped up and there's a smile to that.
As she slips into the place beside Vanora at the refreshment table, Karina's eyes are on the back of her lady's head, looking rather possessive of that exquisite melange of braiding and twists. A passing breeze knocked a few strands out of place, and this cannot be allowed. Nimble fingers are quick to put things to rights even before her own behind has hit the seat. Only after her masterpiece has been restored to its former glory does she focus on the other happenings, brows lifting at the realization that people are already bandying the words 'civil war' around.
Smiling warmly towards Sina, Rosalie flashes a bright smmile, "Thank you! I'm just happy to finally have that man all to myself." Giggling lightly, she nods towards Caspian with a grin, "Thank you, Grandmaster! Just you wait, I expect you to train at least one of our future children to the Champions!" Then she's collecting Astrid and nodding to Alarissa, 'dancing' off with the toddler amidst tickles and giggles. "Flock," she repeats to the toddler, perhaps trying to insert a new word in place of the old. Rosalie carts her towards the refreshments, having one of the serving people fetch some apple juice for the heir.
Victus offers a shrug to his wife. "S'not my fault." He holds his daughter beneath his arm, clutching her around the waist as she flailed impossibly against him. Back to Caspian, he gives the man a grin. "That does sound awfully useful, Grandmaster. It's like uh, the philan-something. What's the word? The one that sounds like physician or medical practice but it's not? Some kinda tropic, trophy, something like that?" He snaps his fingers a few times, but the words don't come. His attention turns after a respectful nod to Caspian, now onto the Grimhalls. "Duke Harald, Heir Valdemar, Lady Grimhall Vanora and Lady Sanya Grimhall." He offers to each of them respectively with a polite nod for everyone. "Glad you all made it, gladder that there isn't an immediate crisis to be solved. Help yourselves to whatever is on the tables, we got more than enough to spare."
Sina glances over at Caspian, and gives him a smile of greeting, inclining her head to him. She glances around searching for Bashira, and smiles to her as well, before turning her attention back to Alarissa once more. She smiles warmly, and inclines her head. "I will look forward to seeing it. I just wanted to ask about it, and wish you all well," she murmurs, before withdrawing once again. She grins at Rosalie's comment. "May the Gods bring you joy in your life together." She then drifts back again into the background, shy as always. There's an amused look from her at Astrid's antics, however, and then she's left sipping rum and glancing about in that quiet way of hers.
"Philantropist perhaps your highness?" John questions of High Lord Victus, attempting to get the right word for him.
Victus snaps. "Yes, that kinda tropist."
"Fine and well." Alarissa answers the other woman. "Thank you so much for coming, we are delighted to see more faces here that we do not ordinarily see." It's time for Alarissa to make rounds it would seem. "If you ever have need of anything, please feel free to write to any of us, His Grace or the voices and we shall see what we can do?" She offers up. "Victus, it is very much your fault for she didn't learn it from me. Give Astrid to Lady Rosalie. She will go dancing. She needs to learn such. Maybe then, others will do such as well." A gesture for him to pass over the toddler. She doesn't stop sina from disappearing, just wriggles her fingers to her.
To John, Helia smiles and says, "Oh, I think I saw you at the beach. Briefly, before I ran off. There was a shark cake." She nods sagely. Shark cake explains it all.
Valdemar has left the a refreshment table lined with rum.
2 Grimhall House Guards have been dismissed.
Gustav, a gruff Islander advisor have been dismissed.
John nods "Yes. It depends. Some people do it for different reasons. But its usually someone with the wealth, who decides to donate it for whatever reason." He then turns his focus to Helia, "Ah yes. I remember that. Don't think I ate the shark cake though... Shark tastes great though."
So many familiar faces! Helia is given a warm smile, "Ah see Prince John got there ahead of me, terribly sorry got caught up in something. So, when will be heading out on that lovely ship?" to Helia, "John, what a pleasure." Today Cora has a six year old girl with her, one who has decided that there are people to meet and see and maybe they have treats, and oh foooood." Avery starts going to try the yummy things. "The cake was lovely, even if I ended up wearing most of it." Rosalie gets a cheerful wave. Of course as she had entered Victus and Alarissa had gotten bows and Cora had whispered something to Alarissa before slipping her a small package.
Vanora smiles at Karina warmly. "I'm sure you're not expected to both style my hair and keep every strand in place even now. This is a party...or open court at least, some combination thereof. Enjoy yourself darling, you have earned it and then some. Eat, drink, be merry." She offers that pleasant smile towards Victus then, "We are glad to have made it too. I feel like there is always and ever an immediate crisis to be solved, but some of them seem our own, and we're managing well enough. At least I believe we are." She looks to the Grim Duke, perhaps for confirmation, patting Valdemar on the hand before he slips into silence.
Belatedly Cora waves to Vanora as well, also cheerfully.
John looks over at the girl and offers a smile to her then to Coraline, "So whose the little bundle of love?"
"If we aren't here to solve some kind of immediate crisis, it just means there's one out there that we don't know about yet." It might not be precisely the most cheerful of attitudes, but Harald takes a good long drink afterwards, so maybe it'll get better. "We do manage well enough though, always have. Likely always will. Food and drink helps."
Sanya turns to Karina, grinning as she finishes perfecting her work. "It's perfect, Karina, there's no doubt about it. Would that I could style my own hair so beautifully." Her blonde waves tumble to below her shoulder blade, a single comb keeping them coiffed.
Sina eventually finishes her rum, setting the glass neatly on a passing servant's tray. Then she quietly turns and makes her way out of the gathering, her steps unhurried, her long braid swaying down her back. Her two assistants, who have been waiting off to the sidelines, follow after her and soon she is gone as quietly as she appeared.
Jacinthe, Arindais, a dour-looking Scholar leave, following Sina.
Smiling at John, Cora nods to the little girl, "This is my ward, Avery. She is the adventurous sort but she doesn't get to go to many things like this and well, not a bad time to get her used to them. I just have to keep an eye on her." she grins then her head tilts back where a small army of nurses and a nanny wait, "Well me and them."
Caught up in her discussion with John and Coraline, which continues with animated motions of her non-rum-holding hand, Helia probably doesn't notice anyone else for the moment. Which is to say, sorry if she missed anyone! Regardless, she notes to John, "I love shark. They can get in my stomach. Serves them right for being so toothy. Even if they're kind of cute in a horrifying way... aaaand now I feel guilty." To Coraline next, "Over the next few days? We won't go poking in the captain's quarters, though. That's father's domain. And it doesn't have any booze in there since he moved over to the villa. Boo." John's next words are mirrored in Helia's expression as she grins at the kidster. "Hi sweetie!"
Jophiel checked charm + performance at difficulty 15, rolling 20 higher.
Victus is happy enough to hand off the little Princess to Rosalie when she comes to collect. Luckily, he'd even collected the small wooden axe before that fury could be unleashed on Rosalie as well. "Look at this thing, it's like a toothpick. Why are we giving her toothpicks? She can handle a butter knife at least." With some more grumbling, he turns his eyes fully upon Harald and Vanora again. "You always are a cheery sort, Duke Grimhall." He muses with a faint grin, nodding to Vanora then. "Like water crashing across a rock. We're surrounded by it, we take, and we persevere. We are always getting stronger for it." He looks ready to branch off to Sina, but the girl is moving off before he can. With a harumph, he offers a nod of greeting to Helia when the woman passes by. "Damn, I may just be too sober."
"Ohh, godssend Princess Coraline" Alarissa states, taking the small packages and then handing them off to one of the servants with direction son what to do with them. Avery's smiles at, wriggling her nose at the six year old. "You should go find Lady Rosalie and Astrid and see if you can dance with them. I think Astrid would find great enjoyment in that." She breathes deep, trying to ease the vestiges of looking green and takes up her tea again momentarily from Maxine who is bringing it around with her. "Prince John, Mistress Helia." She smiles again. "I heard about this shark. His Grace brought a piece home for me. I assure you, the blade was fastidiously cleaned in preparation. We had been warned something would be there for him to cleave."
"I'm enjoying, I promise," assures Karina, her voice low and wry. "Specifically, right now, I'm enjoying a few more minutes of how amazingly talented I've become at dressing up hair before the wind blows it all to pieces." As Sanya grins, Karina gestures at her. "See? Sanya gets it! But, fine, I'll mingle and whatnot. Merrily, even." Turning a purposefully wide smile on Sanya, Karina gestures to the silk gracing Sanya's peaches-and-cream complexion. "Love the cut of that. Lycene, isn't it?"
Avery looks first to John, then to Helia, then grins a gaptoothed grin, "Hi! Wanna build a pillow fort? I built one with Kes that was bigger'n the whole estate!" is declared arms as wide as they would go. Then Alarissa is talking to her and Avery beams. "Kay!" And with a wave to all involved off she runs to Rosalie, "Rosaaaaa!" poor woman is given a flying six year old tackle hug. Cora winces in sympathy. She winks at Alarissa's reception of the package then laughs softly, "And that is Avery, she has far more energy then I am certain I ever had."
"Or that we've all our own crisis' to solve as individual Houses I'm sure." Vanora muses to Harald aloud. "Such as the threats to Grihem's Point, but we seem to have...well if not things under control than the means to bring them so, given time. At least you and Valdemar were able to handle a good deal of the pirate situation, along with the Isles Canines." She glances at Victus with an amused smile. "I've caught him in good moods occasionally. He doesn't like it when I do though." She nods to Victus. "On that I agree. It is trials that make both an individual and a people strong...the more one suffers the greater they become. A reason to consider the nature by which we engage our enemies, for unless it is to finality, we give them that same gift."
John looks at Avery, Coraline, Helia and then the batallion of nurses and nannies. "Well I'm pretty sure she is in good hands." John states to Cora as he leans and gives her a kiss on Cora's cheek, assuming she wants one obviously. He drinks some more of the served wine. When High Lord Victus comments he is too sober, John smiles in a friendly way and informs the High Lord, "I see lots of rum. Don't see what stops you from getting plastered. I am also pretty sure you can hold your rum well. So perhaps a few bottles will do the trick." John didn't seem like a constant drinker. Yet he seemed to hold his liquor well.
Rosalie offers a wave and bright smile towards Coraline and Avery, collecting Astrid from Victus and whirling her off towards Coraline and Avery amidst giggles. "She seems to do well enough against your shins already, Your Grace! Are you sure you want to give her something sharp or with more heft to it?" Its called back to Victus before she's being greeted enthusiastically by Avery. Staggering a step, she gives a slight wince for a six year old foot on her toes, but grins and leans down to give Avery a big hug, "Hi Avery! You want to come play with Astrid and I? We were going to dance! Its something every great adventurer should know how to do, you know. How else do you celebrate your victories if you don't dance?" Helia and John are both given a smile and wave as Rosalie leads the children a bit farther away from the main group to start the dancing lesson, which promises to go hilariously terrible.
"It may be." Vanora then answers Karina in regards to Sanya's dress. "Look at how she pulls it off to perfection though. Stunning." Coraline is caught by pale green eyes and smiled at warmly too.
A bright as sunshine smile at sent Alarissa's way when the princess approaches. "Your Highness, it was a very good cleave. Father had cake lodged right in his earhole afterwards." She sips deep from her rum again when John speaks, "It's good run, I'm telling you!"
Helia smiles back at Rosalie too"
Chuckling at Victus' suggestion he hasn't drunk enough, finishes the rum in her own glass before turning back to Karina. "Oh it is, you have a good eye. I've never owned a dress quite like it but it's elegant and comfortable too I might add." She studies Karina's dress also, with bright smile. "I love the colour of that gown, it's gorgeous. It reminds me of spring." To Vanora, she chuckles. "They almost might mistake me for a Lycene."
Caspian slides on up over to Bashira, giving the woman a small nudge as he smiles her way, saying, "This is pretty laid back for open court. How are you, Sis? Up to anything interesting since I last saw you?"
Jasher has rolled 1 6-sided dice: 2
Arcadia checked charm at difficulty 15, rolling 11 higher.
"We -might - have been warned about a shark cake, or at least I was. I only informed his grace enough o ensure that unlike my birthday cake, that the wedding cake would not be cleaved by a weapon that may or may not have been cleaned." Alarissa looks to the small gathering, palm in palm at her waist. "Thank you for coming and should you find yourself in want of anything from Thrax, no matter how small you may think it is, please, reach out. Our ministers are always at the ready to assist others in tending to matters. A stronger house, any house, is a stronger compact all around."
A surprised look at the cheek kiss, and Cora pats John's arm fondly, "Yes well, she has many already who adore her."Avery bounces in excitement at the offer with yes repeated with a speed few could comprehend in excitement, and Cora watches her ward with a proud sort of grin. Bashira and Caspian are given cheerful waves each, "She is doing amazing you should be proud." she calls to Caspian about Bashira.
A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Jophiel before departing.
"She needs her practice!" Victus calls back to Rosalie. It sounded as though that should have been a joke, but it's almost pointedly /not/. With polite nods to Vanora, Harald and Sanya each, he travels his way down the table. In search of less sobriety of course as he generously takes a second bottle as he moves. His eyes upon Coraline and Avery for the moment, a suspicious gaze as well. "That's your ward? She's a loud thing ain't she." He observes. "You give her anything sharp to play with yet? Kids have a lot of fun when you give 'em something pointy to swing around."
Bashira looks over to Caspian and there's a soft smile to her brother, "I've not been up to much, Caspian." she tells him. "What about you?" she asks him as she looks at him.
'Victus Thrax!" Another chiding comes from the direction that Alarissa seems to be..
"There's worse mistakes to make," notes Karina at Sanya's comment, having answered Sanya's compliment of her own dress with a quick smile. "I love our Mourning Isles, mind you, and we have the market cornered in terms of high-necked dignity, efficiency, and the austere, but as far as showcasing a luxuriant female figure goes, if we're being honest, I think that we have to admit defeat to the tailors of the Lyceum." Finding a cup of wine, she lifts it as a prospective toast. "Each region has its own fashion strengths, hm?"
Bashira catches the wave from Coraline and she waves back to her, "Thank you, your highness!" she calls with a smile.
"Princess Coraline says I shoud be proud of you, what have you been doing that I should be proud of?" Ask Caspian with a grin, reaching over to give Bashira a half hug. He lets out a laugh at Victus and Alarissa, stating, "Sharp objects are fun! I sure like them, and I'm just a really big child at heart."
Cora laughs at Victus' words, "Oh we are learning how to properly handle weapons with wasters first. I am not about to hand that child a sharp weapon, I would end up more chewed up than coming out of war did me. And yes, she has an excessive amount of energy, give her two ours in this party and she will be asleep so hard." Bashira gets a wink and a wave, "I only tell it how I see it." To Caspian she grins, "Yes, yes you are." and sticks her tongue out at him.
Lethe has left the a cleared portion of the courtyard for dancing.
Lethe has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Jophiel before departing.
"Well, I couldn't have the cake ready and then have the High Lord -not- bring his axe! That would have been a disaster!" Rosalie calls back towards Alarissa with a bright grin. Turning back to the children, she starts the lesson, having Avery act the 'adventurer's' part and leading, while she holds onto Astrid's hands to help her along in the dance. There is sure to be toes stepped on and squawking and much laughter! Looking back to Victus, she calls back, "She managed to sneak up on your and give a few good whacks! I'd say she's doing pretty good!" She turns back to the children just in time to catch Avery from a stumble, keeping both girls upright and grinning, "Good! Now try this," and she's showing Avery a new turn and helping Astrid through it. Looking back to Coraline, she calls out, "You should bring Avery on the next sailing trip! I plan to bring Kes so she can start getting used to sailing!"
Vanora grins openly at Karina and nods to Sanya as well. "I've tried, truly, but for the most part have been unsatisfied with the way high-necked dignity and austere look on me. At least, being one of the Thirteenth's own, I've always and ever been comfortable in black. This is actually my experiment in compromise. I'm not sure how much of a compromise it is, mind, but it covers more skin than what I might wear to open court in the Lyceum." There's a nod of agreement. "There are absolutely worse things to be mistaken for, dearest Sanya. Though if your dress inspires others to assume you are lying whenever you speak, that may be frustrating. It's far more likely to happen at an Oathlands party than here tonight though, so enjoy."
There's a squint back to Alarissa. "You act as though everyone need follow my parenting advice." Victus chides right back. "No one does. And their child can turn out worse for it if they so choose." The rampant six-year old gets another long stare as she runs about. Perhaps gauging what may be in store for the not too distant future. "I will have to prepare for this." After some more rounds, Victus does finally find himself some place to sit. Rum in one hand and whiskey in the other. One is set down so he might simply drink for the moment. "I'm personally of the mind that swinging axes at things that doesn't harm a life is a pretty good release. Cakes happen to be impeccably shaped for chopping. So ya' know, it helps in multiple ways. Is silk really /that/ important to not get stained every now and then?"
Bashira missed this part, "I..." she squints. "I don't really know?" she murmurs to her brother. "Just my duty." she tells him with a smile. "I got my cloak from Mistress Sheena. It was worth the wait, I'll have to show you." she tells him as she returns the have hug to her older brother. "You're the one doing all the flashy things." she muses.
After escorting Lethe from the dance floor, there's a chuckle, before Jophiel gives her a quick squeeze in parting and then approaches where Coraline is seated and his smile is warm but terribly amused. "If you want, Dame, I could kit up in what armor I do have to try to protect my joints from being loosened." His tone is full of mirth and he chuckles openly as he bows to Prince John. "Your Highness, do you mind if I borrow some of Coraline's time upon the dance floor. I promised it to her Highness to assist in keeping an eye and seeing how her young ward is progressing in her own dance."
Vanora murmurs a brief excuse to her family before rising to her feet, "I'll be right back." She states, though there's been little interest in the food and only a sip or two of the rum, even if they were generous ones. She walks over to approach Coraline, greeting the princess with airy Lycene kisses to each cheek that only skim the air. A low murmur is offered to the lady then, her expression remaining both court-polite and gently affectionate.
"Yes Victus. Silk is not easy to clean, not in the least. It is delicate and prone to staining and if anyone ends up demanding that we replace their silk, we'll have to replace it." But Alarissa's moving away from the table and heading for Jasher and Arcadia.
Alarissa has left the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Alarissa has joined the seating along the southern wall.
Rosalie has left the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Rosalie has joined the a cleared portion of the courtyard for dancing.
Sanya nods her head at Karina's words. "Each region has their own standards of beauty and while there are crossovers, it's difficult to please everyone. I have adjusted my wardrobe since arriving here, admittedly." Refilling her cup, she takes another sip. "If I was lying, I'm sure people would know. I don't quite have that talent." She waves as Vanora takes her leave.
Vanora has left the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Jophiel is given a warm smile, which morphs into a mischivous grin, "Dear me, don't give me ideas, I do like a good challenge and well, in this case armor would present one." Vanora's arrival and greeting is returned as warmly, "How have you been?" she says with a smile. Bashira's reply to Caspian's question gets a laugh, "Yeah, keep him guessing!" she teases, then grins, "Yes her duty, but she does it very well."
Lethe has left the a refreshment table lined with rum.
3 Tyde Houseguard leaves, following Lethe.
"Don't tempt me, Princess, I would spend the rest of the evening finding ways to challenge you." Jophiel counters Coraline warmly as he winks at her. "If I am in armor, then things have truly gone poorly." he offers with a wink, waiting for the Princess to finish her greetings and join him for escort to the dance area.
Caspian lets out a chuckle back to Bashira and Coraline, nudging the former with a grin. "You were always the diligent one! Me, I like to lay around and do what I feel like." He lets out a little chuckle at that, shrugging his shoulders. Looking over to the two youngin's, he grins, telling Bashira, "Feel free to make me a uncle some day. I love kids."
John seems to be remaining quiet as he drinks. Just watching and studying the others. But not talking much. Silence. It's a great method to study all those around you. Watching. Studying. Not speaking. Just drinking.
Like John, Helia's also a little quiet, for once. But that's because she's happily drinking rum. Not quite enough to get sloshed, but enough to put a bit of colour in her cheeks. Ah, rum!
Damien Pierce - A Charming Assistant, 1 Redreef Guard arrive, following Mikani.
"Certainly you don't," agrees Karina with Sanya, tapping her glass of alcohol with a thoughtful finger. "Beauty like yours can't lie. In fact, I'm pretty sure that if someone as pretty as you tries to lie, the words just automatically become true by default. It's the rules." Blithe hyperbole. When Victus wonders about the importance of silk, Karina calls out: "Depends on how important your money is to you, Your Grace. After my father realized just how much they cost to replace, my silks' unstainedness became a matter of *supreme* importance."
Vanora remains with her head bowed towards Coraline, speaking with the Princess in low tones.
Bashira gives a laugh to Coraline and there's a wave of her hand to the Princess, "He's the boaster of the family, not me, your highness." she tells him. Then there's a look to Caspian and an amused look, "It's because you're like a large cat who finds sun spots to bathe in. Everywhere." she teases him. But her face loses all joy when he comments on making him an Uncle someday and she looks to her hands, "I'll get right on that." she mutters.
Mikani has joined the seating along the southern wall.
Caspian seems a bit confused when he looks to Bashira, noticing the woman's mood turning sour. "Ah, is that a sore spot for you? I didn't know, sorry," he says, reaching up to scratch at the back of his head. Though when he spies Mikani, he points to her, saying, "Lets go see our cousin."
Mikani has left the seating along the southern wall.
Mikani has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Mikani smiles as she sees her cousins. "Call me and I am here." She laughs as she gives a hug to Caspian. She looks over at Bashira. "You must be Bashira. I'm glad to meet you .... I am Mikani."
John looks over at Helia, "So Mistress Helia, what do you do as work?"
Bashira gives Caspian a look, "You know that I'm not married and I'm not with anyone." she tells him gently. "I just..." then she quiets as he points out Mikani. There's a dip of her head to the woman, "It's nice to meet you, Lady Redreef." she greets her.
Mikani shakes her head. "Just call me Mika. We're family." She looks back at Caspian, "If you want children around; you do the work." She gives Caspian the look before looking back at Bashira. "I now need to know all about you."
A loooong sip from Helia's rum, then the swordswoman pats the scabbard on her swordbelt. Her smile to John is broad and friendly, "I'm Count Fredrik RedTyde's adopted daughter, and soon to be his Sword once I get the blade commissioned. I'm a Champion too." She wrinkles her nose at John in good humour afterwards, "To be honest, none of it's what I'd call work, not really." Then, "And what about you, YOur Highness? Where do your talents lie, if you don't mind me asking."
"You can say that, but come on," Caspian says, pointing to Mikani, "Who'd be crazy enough to have kids with me?" He asks with a grin, wrapping his arms around Mikani in a big bear hug!
Helia adds, "Well, not a Champion quite yet. Not a full one!"
Victus scoffs at that talk of silk. "Oh silk isn't /that/ pricey. At least not the basic silk. Now all those colors and spinnin' and all that shit, circumstantial. Semantics even. It's not /that/ bad." He calls back to Karina as he slowly pushes himself back up. Eyes traveling up and down the proceedings, they come to rest upon Mikani. The High Lord takes a moment to trudge up toward the woman. "Lady Mikani Redreef. Ain't heard from Redreef for awhile. How're things over in that neck of the salt, eh?" A thin grin slowly spreads. "Good I'm hopin'."
Sanya begins to chuckle at Karina's words, shaking her head, though her smile doesn't fade. "You truly flatter me. But a beautiful face is like to be more deceiving. Thankfully, I don't have skills of deception." She continues to sip on her rum as she pulls a plate of crabs closer to her.
John looks at Helia "That sounds like a huge honor then."
Bashira doesn't look so sure, maybe it's because she's use to using noble titles. "He's just wanting me to be happy and we both do love kids. Just need to take the proper steps. And I have things that take precedence at the moment." the Shaman states. Like not dying at the Lodge of Petrichor. Then there's a smile, "Um, not much to know. I'm a sailor mainly. Shaman by religion. I'm a member of the Order of East Light as well." she tells her. "Nothing too exciting like Caspian." she chuckles.
Mikani smiles at Victus after she elbows Caspian in the gut. "Your Highness ...." She bows her head. "Redreef is moving forward ... trying to be more progressive like our cousins in Darkwater ... and looking to the great examples of Thrax." She grins. "But if you want to look through all of that preening and brown nosing ... I will say that Redreef may be small, but we are working at joining our larger neighbors in ending child thralldom. Something I am very much looking forward to. As for other things. I did get a shipment of Skald's First Choice Rum shipped in. This rum is exclusive ... only 5 bottles per batch. I brought one for Princess Coraline."
Looking back to Victus, Rosalie calls out, "That's a matter of subjective opinion, Your Grace! Not every House has access to the amount of funds and resources that your own has. To many of the smaller or newer Houses, even silk is a luxury." Then she's turning back towards the children and laughing as Astrid grabs Avery's hand and starts trying to spin with the older girl.
Giving Vanora a quick hug, after their quite conversation, Cora offers Jophiel her hand, "Well then, shall we test your joints? Or is it your toes?"
Scoffed at by Victus, then (more gently) by Sanya, too? Hrmph. Victus may be heading off, but Sanya remains, and as Sanya prepares to tuck in with her crabs, Karina shakes her head and earnestly pursues her claim of beauty making things true. "Don't believe me? We'll test it, then. Do me a favor and repeat: 'Karina is not nervous at all and will be absolutely brilliant at this event.' And then, if I'm right about how your loveliness operates, you'll be doing me a wonderful favor." To encourage such favor-doing, she does one unprompted, snagging a dish of red, spicy sauce that's nearer to her than to the blonde and passes it to Lady Sanya for crab-dippage.
Belatedly Cora grins at Mikani, "Lady Mikani! Thank you, it is one I shall cherish. I need to begin a collection I think."
"My sister is much more shy then I am," Caspian says back to Mikani with a grin, nudging Bashira. "She is an excellent sailor and some day a knight. And we still need to have her join The Explorers," he says with a grin back to Bashira. "She's a curious sort who is always good for finding something new."
"Joints, toes.." Jophiel laughs and grins brightly as he accepts Coraline's hand to help her up to lead her towards the dance floor. Though his voice lowers in a teasing lit as he leads the Princess/Dame towards a place for the pair of them to prepare to dance. "A gift from Lady Mikani?" he asks curiously.
Vanora offers another air kiss to Princess Coraline, finally freeing the poor woman from listening to her quiet thoughts and setting her free to enjoy the dance floor. She returns to the table and her husband's side then, retaking her seat. "I believe that court issues are perhaps to be addressed later in the evening, after the dining and dancing." she informs him. Maybe that was what she was getting the lowdown on, having missed the very start to the festivities.
"A worthy goal." Victus mused in kind to Mikani. "I hear you're assisting my wife with the very same as well, hm? Good on ya'. I'll look forward to your progress in the not too distant future." With that the Prince steps back again, making his rounds toward the refreshment table again. Occasionally an eye to the sky as the sun (or moon) slowly kept moving on. "I'll also remind anyone that has official business to bring up with House Thrax, this is the venue for open discussion of it. I'm about out of official matters to discuss myself." This called over the hustle and bustle of dancing and dining.
Following Jophiel to the dance floor with an amused sort of grin, "So long as fair warning is given I am free from blame." she nods, "Lady Mikani has some amazing rum from Redreef. Truly spectacular stuff, do you enjoy rum Lord Jophiel?"
"I am shy, because it was sort of a given when I was little to be seen and not heard." Bashira shrugs at that with a laugh. "As I tell Caspian, we're two sides of the same coin. He is the brash and public one. I am the shy and private one. Until I need to go fight." she tells Mikani. "I like doing investigations and things of that nature. We've done a few on the Ru-Taul family. I've got another one started in fact." she adds.
Something that Vanora murmurs in Karina's ear after the Seabright's comments has Karina breaking into a grateful, then a mildly worried smile. She glances back at Vanora, eyes worried/curious and - juuust stops herself from trying, again, to fix some new imperfections in Vanora's updo, curling her fingers back in mid-motion. Nope. Be merry. Mingle. Her face returns to Sanya, clearly optimistic about Sanya's powers to bend reality to her will.
Sanya - midway through her meal - glances up as Vanora joins them once again. Welcoming her back, she takes a sip from her third glass of rum. Her brows raise as Karina gives her a hopeful look, glancing between the two women. She leans in with a hushed voice.
For a while now, Valdemar has been quietly enjoying a glass of rum and listening to the conversation going on around him, without remarking on any of it. "Is that so?" he asks Vanora in response once she returns to the table to sit beside him, then gives his father a glance. Then the High Lord is speaking up, saying that he /is/ ready to discuss official business after all, and the Grimhall heir takes a long drink from his rum, a thoughtful expression on his face.
After a moment, Caspian turns to Victus, noting to him, "You mentioned something about pirates. I'm curious about this, I hadn't hear anything about piracy recently."
A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Mikani before departing.
Victus takes another sip of rum before gesturing toward Caspian. "Right. Good question. It's equal parts good and bad that you probably haven't heard much about piracy, Grandmaster Caspian. Good in the sense that it's not a widespread issue. But, likewise there is always a sinister reason for why bad things are not being hellishly active. Usually because something happens in the shadows, yeah?" He raises a brow to the Champion. "Pirates of late are having an awful tendency to - rather than take gold and ships with their raids - abduct crews instead. They come quickly and precisely." He takes another sip. "It's a trend that's definitely worrying. In the fact that they are more organized than your average pirates, and have more use for human souls than material goods." He pauses a beat. "Any other questions about that?"
'I adore you too Jasher!" Alarissa nearly sing songs as she moves away from the southern wall and makes her way back across the courtyard to come to a rest beside Victus. She slides her arm into his, up on her toes to press a kiss as close to his cheek as she can get. Not that she gets that close. More like understand of his jaw before falling silent to listen.
Alarissa has left the seating along the southern wall.
Alarissa has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Vanora before departing.
"Do we have any idea of the identity or affliation of the pirates?" Asks Caspian back to Victus with a lift of his brows to him. "Are they working under the Tyde woman who's name we shouldn't speak? Or I recently learned Eurasi pirates are a thing."
Vanora's attention is surely captured by the High Lord at this, green eyes lifting to focus on him until a messenger comes her way. Clear interest in the topic, even if she doesn't speak, deferring to the Grim Duke and her husband to do so. Whatever is written in that missive however has her taking a slow, almost shivery breath. "I'm so terribly sorry for my rudeness. I have to go. I would not if there were any other choice, truly." She leans in to Valdemar to whisper something quietly, before rising to her feet.
"Actually, your Grace, I was wondering what you might have heard about how many of these pirates there are, and who they are organizing under?" Valdemar goes on to ask Victus after he says what he does about the pirates' recent tendency to kidnap crews, before going on to explain a bit further, "I ask because someone brought me news of it a little while ago, and I told him that he should bring it to either you or Prince Galen." He then leans in to listen to whatever his wife is saying, his brow furrowing for a moment before he whispers back to her and then nods.
Jasher pinches the bridge of his nose and leans into his seat, staring at his plate of dismembered aquatic fauna.
Mikani nods to Bashira listening, "I can understand that. I have a curious mind too ... when I earned my freedom I learned archaeology and have been traveling around looking into things." Her tone as always is warm and comforting. "What have you found of my new family. I really wish to learn as much as I can."
By now, John has emptied a bottle of wine, and is now grabbing a new one as his eyes flit from interlocutor. Thus listening and learning just like he has always done.
Bashira turns to listen to Victus for the moment and there's a frown when pirates are mentioned. Then Mikani is speaking again and there's a soft smile to her cousin for the moment as she leans in to whisper something to her.
Mikani nods to Bashira frowning a bit. She whispers back.
"The Tyde woman is our most likely candidate." Victus replies with a nod to Caspian and Valdemar. "Reports have come in from the Mourning Sea, the Lyceum, and the Oathlands. The cases are too similar to easily be coincidence, and a another report we received from a source just today seems to indicate the most frequent traffic comes from Port Defiance. A pirate haven, formerly a den for the Gyre's followers as well. There are few scouts that have ventured close to Defiance and returned back alive and well, but the ones who have tell us that the Port is..." He scratches at his chin. "A little /too/ well hidden to be natural."
Valdemar nods his head at what the High Lord has to say. "We recently embarked on a pirate hunt around Grihem's Point, and with the help of the Isles Canines and a few other interested parties, captured a pirate 'lord' working for the Tyde woman. In spite of our success, though, your other vassals might want to consider similar action in their own waters. Even if most of her fleet is near Port Defiance, what we found shows that they are not all there, necessarily," he goes on to suggest.
John perks up when Victus mentions the reports. "Reports... I see." He then pauses to pick up his wine glass, swish it a bit as he seems thoughtful and drinks from the wine. "Any plans on dealing with that, Highlord Victus?"
Startled before going back to the now-default worry, Karina's head tips up and follows after Vanora, her limbs reconfiguring to rise and follow until a look from Vanora lets her know that now is not the time for lady-waiting, whereupon she relaxes (sort of) back onto her seat. A mouth realizes that it's open a bit and closes, and thoughts try to reorient themselves. Meantime, Karina glances back at Sanya. "This is definitely because you didn't say the thing, you know. Now I'm going to be nervous no matter what." Dryly spoken. After a bit more consideration, the girl uproots and resettles herself beside Sanya. leaning in to ask a quiet something while her ears perk to the ongoing pirate dialogue.
Victus gives another nod Valdemar's way in acknowledgement, gesturing to John. "Which leads me to that point, these brand of pirates are clever enough not to continually attack ships of noble houses. Much of their activity is localized upon trading companies and merchants that are more loosely affiliated. This is not so widespread as to justify calling Thrax's banners, thus it will have to fall to individual intervention from the willing. Recommendations are going to be written to those House's within the Isles to be aware of increased piracy and encouragement to begin more privateering efforts. But as I said, these issues are widespread across several fealty. This is only what Mourning Isles can do to protect our own. His Majesty, King Alaric and the Master of Questions have both been informed of these problems. With much attention being on the Lodge, there is no Compact-wide efforts being done."
Sanya gives Karina a warm, reassuring smile. "You don't need to be nervous. In fact, the less you think about it, the calmer you will be." Listening to Karina's hushed words, she leans in to respond.
"Even all the way in the Oathlands? Our enemies sure have a far reach," Caspian says with a lift of his brows to Victus, folding his arms across his chest. He looks to Bashira worriedly, telling the woman, "Please be safe out there, okay? I wouldn't know what to do if you were taken." He turns back to Victus as he speaks, then looks to Coraline, saying, "Sounds like a job for The Order of The Eastern Light."
John ends up frowning "Wait. No compact-wide efforts to deal with these pirate problems?"
"Is this the same issue that has lead House Seraceni to close its borders?" Rosalie looks towards Victus curiously, settling the children in with a game of charcoal and stones that guarantees to get them both dirty and keep them entertained.
"If the reported size of her fleet is correct, it doesn't seem to me that any single domain alone will be able to stand against her, should she gather them all and sail in force. What I was told is that her fleet is larger than what the Gyre had," Valdemar responds to the High Lord gravely, his brow furrowed somewhat.
Valdemar's words cause Sanya to whip her head towards the discussion at hand, although her expression remains placid.
Charcoal and stones. Alarissa's still on Victus' arm but there's fringes as streaks of charcoal color that sunny seasilk on her daughter.
Mikani pours herself a drink and takes a sip. Her dark eyes watch the others and listen to what they are saying. "All you need cousin is a bright red cape." She smiles at Caspian. She stays near Bashira's side.
"No Compact-wide efforts while giants and a Herald of Slavery is waiting outside of Arx's walls. Only what Lords and Ladies are willing to do outside of their own walls." Victus replies to John, his eyes finding Rosalie next. "That's outside my realm of knowledge, you'd have to ask Seraceni." Back to Caspian, "Hence why Reveka makes a good candidate as any, considering the Bloodwater's power to transport in an instant." Then, onto Valdemar. "I've heard the same, but I'm skeptical. The Gyre had a thousand years of preparation to build that fleet from scratch. It's only been a few since the Gyre war that destroyed all of those vessels. If it was possible to rebuild even larger than what we faced in that short of a time, it's either propaganda by the enemy or we've missed something gravely terrible." His eyes are downcast while he adjusts a glove. "I certainly hope it's the former."
"We'll be fine out there." Bashira comments to Caspian as she reaches out to squeeze his arm. Then there's a look over to Mikani and a bit of a chuckle, "Oddly I just got a red cape..." she whispers with a snicker.
Mikani snickers with Bashira.
Looks over to Caspian and nods, "Yes, we will be discussing East Light's helping in this situation actually. East Light is there to defend as needed, it sounds like it is needed thus we offer our services."
Caspian looks back to Mikani, letting out a quiet 'Pfft', "It'd have to at least be seasilk, if not aeterna." Looking back to Bashira he chuckles, then turns to Victus. So that blood water thing can transport an entire fleet? It's been seen outside the waters of Arx before, right? So we could have a fleet just pop up in any coast in The Compact without warning?"
"See, this is more like it." Duke Harald takes up a glass for a drink, though it's a rather short and shallow one. "More talk of immediate threats. Now everything feels very much more familiar." A smile creases his face, but it's a humorless one. "As Valdemar notes, Grimhall has been been vigilant. And as Victus notes, we don't know the true nature of the pirate threat right now, though I hope that will soon change. But even a minor threat can turn major if the timing is wrong. We've been very fortunate in our timing so far, never having to deal with more than one major threat at once. That will not hold. So even the minor threats need to be well-heeded."
Caspian looks back to Mikani, letting out a quiet 'Pfft', "It'd have to at least be seasilk, if not aeterna." Looking back to Bashira he chuckles, then turns to Victus. "So that blood water thing can transport an entire fleet? It's been seen outside the waters of Arx before, right? So we could have a fleet just pop up in any coast in The Compact without warning?"
Karina's brows lift at Valdemar's and Victus's pronouncements of the size of the fleet. Even so, she retains the smile prompted by Sanya's answer, her gaze wandering to Caspian for a contemplative once-over. More quiet words are delivered in the pauses between the main back-and-forth, preferring not to distract Lady Sanya from the more epic concerns.
John continue to frown, as he tells Victus, "Sounds like a situation that should be dealt with. The Slaver will take far more time. Better squash the smaller insects first." He looks over to Coraline "Anything you want to do specifically, Princess?"
To John, Cora nods, "East Light can send out ships to protect merchants, as well as supplamenting fleets. If there is a plan to attack this haven then we would supply ships and knights there as well. Or protect ports for the Houses that make up the fealty. There is plenty we can do."
Don't mind the sour looking woman who has appeared by the food table. Adora glances left and right as she piles up a plate like someone up to no good. She takes a step to the side and leans over to reach for a particular piece of cheese, saying in a low, conspiritorial voice to the guy beside her, "Hey. Wanna buy a bookcase?"
Adora has joined the a refreshment table lined with rum.
John keeps his focus on Coraline: "Sometimes it is best to act provatively. This way we can lead the fight to them and put said pirates in the defensive."
Victus sweeps his gaze onto Caspian. "The Darkwater certainly could. The Bloodwater, while more random, always brings something else with it. Whether or not the whole fleet could travel? If we ain't seen it, we can only assume yes or no. But I would not recommend anyone try to find out. No close-encounter with the Bloodwater has ended in anything but swallowed ships or immediate intervention by the Marin'alfar in fringe cases. All accounts say 'stay the fuck away'." He loops an arm across Alarissa's shoulder, squeezing her. "What the fuck did Astrid- Nevermind, actually." He turns back to the rest of the gathering. "Arvum still hasn't fully recovered from the Gyre war, the fact that there isn't a full-scale invasion on the doorstep is telling enough that they aren't ready to come take all domains on. I would say now is the prime opportunity to increase pirate hunting to ensure that wedge gets wider. As well as find answers to the questions we can't explain. For now, both of those are up to the ones willing to pick up a sword or pick up a... magnifying glass or something, I dunno. My point is we're not under an immediate threat, so continued vigilance is the best damn thing any of you could do."
Caspian looks to Adora as she offers him a bookcase, lifting his brows, then gives her a grin. "No, but I do need a rack to store several weapons. Going to start a collection."
"That is true, if we know their numbers, their strengths, their tactics. Intelligence will win this fight far more swiftly and will less loss of life than rushing in. I do not mean that I intend to sit around waiting for answers either. We will gather information, then plan a comprehensive attack with it is time. Until then, there are people who need protecting."
Mikani looks at them, "Have you been able to send out scouts?
Pausing in their dance, Jophiel settles in next to Coraline. "While I am no warrior, there are networks that we can still tap into." he points out. "I am planning on going with Lord Grady Deepwood to try to gather information from the shav tribes that have lost loved ones to the gargantuans."
John looks over towards Coraline, "Well we could scout. Probably take out major numbers. But then again that is actually a risky proposition." He serves himself the next glass of wine as he looks towards Coraline, "Did I miss you dancing?"
"You don't want to know.' Alarissa murmurs to Victus before spotting Adora and moves away from him and the discussion of pirates and toward that woodworker. She comes to a standstill beside her, a gesture to Maxine to get a plate for her and the handmaid starts to put a few pieces of melon on her plate. "Mistress Adora, welcome. I am told we have you to thank for our lovely alcoves? Or someone in your shop."
Cora chuckles, "Ah yes we just finished for the moment, since the talk is turning towards more serious matters it seemed wise to pay attention." she grins, "And yes scouting was on my mind as well."
Sanya raises a brow at Karina at her words, eyes widening slightly. With an amused smile, she takes another drink, and offers a quiet response.
Adora pauses when Alarissa addresses her, leaving a hunk of bread hanging out of her mouth. There's an awkward moment where it seems like she might just reply with her mouth full, but then she gives a stiff half bow. Either that or her back it itchy. It's the moment she needs to chew and swallow before saying, "Yeah, that was me." with a nod. "Wouldn't trust anything for someone so important to anyone else. Princess." She eyes Caspian, "Yeah, I can do that. I can do anything and it will be better than any shi...tty stuff you already have." Halfway through she decides just not bothering to try to save that.
"You should come see it, all of them, together. I am quite pleased and very thankful for your care and attention to detail. You have made me a very happy woman and your work has become a very central and well loved part of the family Mistress Adora" There's a look to Caspian and a smile.
Mikani over hears Adora talking and can't help but to smile. Her attention went back to ther other's conversation. She sips her rum and relaxes.
"Shitty?" Ask Caspian back to Adora with a lift of his brows to her, smirking as he says. "You're shittin' me. My shit ain't shitty. You're shit's shitty. I'll contact you later about your shitty racks," he says with a shrug given her way, then turns back to Bashira, "What do you think? After looking into our family a bit more, we should switch over to looking into these pirates?"
Jasher has rolled 1 6-sided dice: 4
Valdemar nods his head a little at what Victus has to say, and then knocks back the rest of his rum. "As you say, your Grace. I will continue my efforts to try to get some verification of the size of her fleet, then. For now, though, I am afraid I should excuse myself. I've an early morning ahead of me tomorrow," he responds to the High Lord before rising to his feet and bowing so that he can take his leave.
2 Grimhall House Guards, Gustav, a gruff Islander advisor leave, following Valdemar.
Keski, a nervous disciple of Petrichor, Aletta, an even more nervous disciple of Petrichor, 1 Templar Knight guards, Oswald, the war pig arrive, following Brigida.
Rising not long after his son, Harald concurs. "I too must be leaving before it gets too late. I thank you both for your hospitality." He indicates the 'both' with polite nods to both Victus and Alarissa.
Harald has left the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Orre, 5 Grimhall House Guards leave, following Harald.
Victus takes a look around once the information has set in. "That's all we know, and all that is planned on this pirate problem at present. Arm yourselves with the knowledge and plan accordingly. I got nothing else of the incredibly serious variety to touch on tonight. So, resume dancing and eating if you fancy. Won't be any existential threats from my brain unless you all wanna start talking about the Lodge. Which is your choice, because I've dealt with enough talking animals in my life by now." His eyes turn to the leaving Grimhalls with an awkward bow of his own.
Laughter erupts from Karina following the not-that-quiet exchange between Adora and Caspian. Grinning still, she muses as an aside to Sanya, "You were right." Valdemar's and Harald's exits catch her attention, though, and the mirth seeps away, her forehead furrowing again. "Thinking that I maybe ought to head out, too, all things considered. See if I can't get things situated for the Lady Vanora when she returns home."
"It's always good to have a happy, rich customer," Adora replies to Alarissa without a hint of irony, taking another bite of her hastily assembled sandwich. She snorts at Caspian's reply, but doesnt't say anything else since she's really going to town on that sandwich.
Bashira gives a soft smile to Caspian and Mikani before she stands, "I need to be going. Please be safe." she tells them. Then the woman is standing. There is a bow to Alarissa and Victus and then she's heading out as well. Business to take care of.
Mikani smiles at Bashira. "Have a good night."
Caspian looks over to Mikani after a moment, wondering, "Has Bashira invited you to look into our family linage? If not, ask her to, because we could always use the help." He looks over to Bashira, giving her a wave, saying, "See you later, sis."
Well, here comes an odd sight: The gold-sparkled and always effervescent figure of Arcadia Leary leading the contrastingly dark and dispassionate Prince Jasher towards the dance floor by the hand, a glowing smile curled upon her face.
There's the overloud clack of an Archlector of Petrichor bringing her walking stick down harder than necessary with every step. Does Archlector Brigida Fidante really have any place at a Thrax fealty dinner? Well, if she decides the answer is yes, who's gonna stop her? You?! No, sir! As she walks through, she passes by Adora and says mildly, "The wardrobe made my Templar bleed. Well done, dear."
Octavian, a silken spaniel arrives, following Zoey.
Bashira has left the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Caspian looks over to Karina as she laughs his way, and gives her a deep bow at the waist, then approaches the woman. A side eye is given over to Brigida, but his attention is on Karina on the moment. "Always love making a stranger laugh. Lets not be strangers anymore! Caspian Wild, at your service!"
Statues would be even more emotive than Jasher's expression is right now as he's more-or-less herded by a woman nearly a foot shorter than he is. His blue eyes tell a different story, though: if looks were deeds, the prince would be in the running for the next Herald of Lagoma's dark reflection.
Zoey strides in with the air of a woman who has been far too busy for far too long and has -finally- escaped. She pushes a few stubborn curls into her fillet and skirts around to the back after a curtsey for Victus and Alarissa.
John smiles knowingly as he shakes his head at Coraline with a playful smile. Then he serves another glass of wine and sets it down. Amusement in his eyes as he looks at Coraline again with that happy smile of his. "I'll see you later if you are able. Let me know what the plan is to deal with the pirates." He stands up and performs a flourishing bow to those present while having that smile of his.
Mikani sips her rum and relaxes into her seat. She is oddly amused by the woman ushering Jasher about. The others dancing. Caspian making woman laugh.
As Caspian addresses Karina, Sanya's gaze flickers too him, offering him a kind smile. "Master Caspian, how nice to see you again. I still want to hear the end of the tale with the bear, when you have the time, of course." She inclines her head to Bashira and Mikani in greeting.
"Shall we then, Cora?" Jophiel asks of the Princess with a bow of his head and an offer of his arm to the Princess.
3 Last Watch Sentries arrives, following Donella.
Helia is nowhere to be seen. She's drinking rum and chatting up the servants. How idle of her!
Looks at Jophiel with a quizzical expression and slightly arched eyebrow. But he says nothing after he looks at Coraline as well. But he seems to just leave it there.
Arcadia has left the seating along the southern wall.
Arcadia has joined the a cleared portion of the courtyard for dancing.
Jasher has left the seating along the southern wall.
Jasher has joined the a cleared portion of the courtyard for dancing.
John still smiling, John comments, "Have a good one people."
'See another satisfied customer." Alarissa smiles to the surly woodcrafter and turns her attention to Brigida. "Archlector. A surprise and a good one. Welcome to the Thrax Ward. How are you his evening?" She lifts the plate of maybe four? Five pieces of melon on it and offers it up to the Archlector. "You just missed the conversation about pirates and the plague that they are." Zoey's curtsey gets a dip of her head. "Lady Kennex!" She states brightly.
John has left the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Caspian's eyes go over to Sanya as she mentions finishing the story with the bear, the man letting out a little chuckle and a grin as he dips his head. "Let me know when, and I will. I love telling a good story," he says back to her with a few nods of his head.
Karina is still seated despite her declared intention of maybe-might-be-leaving, and when Caspian fetches up nearby, she returns his initial bow, bending at the waist until her tail of hair droops down her shoulder and her face is level with the crumb-speckled ground. "Always delighted to have been made to laugh, Ex-Stranger." The arm that went out with a flourish turns into an elbow that gently pokes Sanya in the side. "Psst. Introductions?"
Zoey freezes as Alarissa's bright hailing makes it all but impossible for her to slink into hiding. She turns to face the High Lady and smiles, though her smile is small for all its warmth. "Your Highness," she responds, moving towards the woman. "Are you well? And I missed a discussion on pirates; that's unfortunate."
Keski, a nervous disciple of Petrichor have been dismissed.
Aletta, an even more nervous disciple of Petrichor have been dismissed.
1 Templar Knight guards have been dismissed.
Oswald, the war pig have been dismissed.
Thrax expatriate princess, Donella rolls on up on her family's lawn for the spectacle of a more familiar court. "Is something wronger than usual?" she asks of Caspian as she slows. "I can't hear His Grace bellowing beyond the gates. I had to check to make sure I'd gone the right way."
"Damn it coz, I'm fine." Victus immediately blurts out as Donella makes herself known, having given nods of acknowledgement to those also filtering in as the night is winding down. "My social fuel has been utterly eroded in the course of holding court under the stars for this long. Even if most of it is dancing and eating. Because a lot of it was."
"Bellowing? Oh, that was when his daughter was trying to cut him at the shin with a wooden axe. She nearly cleaved a leg off of him until her mother stopped her," Caspian says back to Donella with a bright smile offered to the princess. "Your highness, it's always an honor to see my greatest benefactor."
Adora starts repiling her plate woth food, a little cheese, lots of meat, some bread. Then an entire loaf is tucked under one arm as everyone starts talking amongst themselves and then she starts heading for the street. "Good party. No false advertising." she says as she goes.
Stojan, the assistant, 4 Thrax Guards arrive, following Denica.
Once in the cleared area of Thraxian courtyard, Cady turns back towards the grim height of Jasher, peering up at him as she takes both his gloved hands in her own. She gives them a little playful swing of motion. "Certainly you have danced at least once before, yes?" She sounds cautiously optimistic.
Caspian turns back to Karina and gives her a little grin, saying, "Well, I introduced myself! You can introduce yourself now, if you want, unless you like the mysterious factor. Which I don't blame you. Mysterious is always a good look."
"I will do." Sanya nods in response to Caspian. "I apologise, Karina, my mind was occupied." When the man suggest she introduces herself, the Grimhall gives her a smile and relaxes back in her seat.
"Likewise," Donella says, "It's always reassuring to know there is a friendly champion floating around, for when the family gathering breaks into sudden, but inevitable fist-fights. "Dinner" we used to call it." She waves a have toward her cousin. "I'm glad you're still fine. I'll credit your wife."
When Denica arrives, she casually strolls on over to Victus with a look around at the gathered crowd. "What, they're still here?" she wonders. "They ask anything only the cute voice could answer?" she wonders, settling down on a seat nearby, crossing her legs casually.
Adora has left the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Victus tilts his head over toward Denica. "I'm sure you could've put everything tonight softer than I. But I did my fair share of yellin' anyway. Could've helped when Astrid started swearing in front of the wife. It was kinda funny though." His eyes trail Adora as she leaves with a plate full of food, somewhat boggled. "... I have no idea who that was." With a shrug, he wanders toward Donella to give his cousin a pat on the back. Overdone and painful, as is tradition.
"No," Jasher responds, terse and dignified, black and silver-buttoned uniform and coat contrasting with the gold-and-green of his shorter partner.
Mikani smiles at the warmth of the families around her. Silently she slips out of the event not wanting to disturb others at her leaving.
Mikani has left the a refreshment table lined with rum.
Damien Pierce - A Charming Assistant, 1 Redreef Guard leave, following Mikani.
"You did lady Kennex. I believe that the Grimhalls were making inquiry about Port Defiance and the pirate lord they caught. Speaking the there were numbers far greater than the combined gyre's fleet current. The only business brought up other than what was murmured about. How are you? Have you met the Archlector Brigida of Petrichor?"
"...or I can introduce myself." As the responsibility gets somehow foisted back onto her, Karina straightens in her seat and gives Sanya a half-amused, half-perturbed Look before turning a full smile back on Caspian. "I'm Karina Seabright. My mother is Duke Harald's wife's sister, and I was shipped over here from Grihem's Point to lady-in-wait on Vanora Grimhall." She offers a palm-down hand to him as she's seen the refined ladies do, the knuckles perked. "Here, have something to kiss so that this introduction at least looks proper."
Alarissa adds over her shoulder. "That was the woman who made all our alcoves and benches and put me in touch with the individual who put the pond together in the atrium Victus! It is because of her that it is so beautiful in there"
"Where is Astrid now?" Denica wonders, looking around for the little one. "I can keep her distracted for now if nothing else," she says with an offer, even as she's grabbing some rum to drink.
Astrid is off in a. Corner with Avery, sunny seasilk dress covered in streaks of charcoal as the two play charcoal and stones. Playing of course, surmounts to the two year old streaking her dress with charcoal and throwing the stones at Avery with a giggling shriek while there's a changeover in nannies and leaving Pellinor looking horrified and unsure what to do.
Caspian takes Karina's hand by the wrist and bends down, planting a kiss upon her hand before rising again and lets go. "I see that you are a lady in waiting, you are much more refined then I could ever hope to be! I'm just a rowdy Grandmaster, so excuse me if my prodigal roots show," he says with a snicker given to Karina. "I know Duke Harald, not well, but I know him. A good man. Have you been in Arx long?"
3 Thrax Guards, 2 Thrax Elite Guards, Teonia Redreef, Aryka Wyrmfang, Marquessa Pudding, a pudgy puppy arrive, following Sorrel.
Donella oofs as Victus catches her between the shoulder blades. "Assault," she accuses sotto voce, but smiles, and hurts her hand returning fire to Victus's bicep, shaking it out theatrically. "Princess Denica, darling sister, Astrid seems to require a prince to attack who is not her noble papa. Don't you have any of those hanging about?"
Gathering her skirts, Sanya rises, having finished her food and drink. "Thank you again, for hosting this lovely event." She says of her hosts, before saying her farewells. On her way out, she places a reassuring hand on Karina's shoulder, giving her a warm smile, before exiting the courtyard.
Rosalie laughs at poor Pellinor's horrified look as she returns to the children, "Its just charcoal, washes right out." She hefts up the Thraxian Princess with a grin and takes Avery by the hand with a smile towards Alarissa, "I've got this. I'll get them cleaned up in no time. They can have a bubble war. Kes and Avery -love- the bubble wars. I'm sure Astrid will come to love them just as much!"
Zoey glances at Brigida as she wanders off. "I have not," she says to Alarissa, faint smile growing a touch amused. "I have heard of her glares by reputation, however." She looks at poor Jasher with Cady and that amusement grows at something. She looks over at Alarissa again, however, and arches an eyebrow as she murmurs lowly.
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