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AoW: Introductions & Fundraiser

The Academy of War has been established within Arx, a military organization aimed at teaching and sharing. This is the official opening of their headquarters, and will serve as an introduction for those involved to one another, a question and answer session for those thinking about joining, and a fundraiser to help pay both for operations as well as for scholarships for those who might not otherwise be able to take advantage of the resource. Food, drink, and entertainment will be provided. All interested parties are welcome, though anyone being disruptive to the business at hand will be asked to leave.


June 9, 2018, 9 p.m.

Hosted By

Natalia Kael Reigna


Cullen Monique Corban Alis Seth(RIP) Lou Alessandro Percephon Lisebet Norwood Thesarin Perrach Alaric



Arx - Ward of the Crown - Academy of War - Headquarters

Largesse Level


Comments and Log

white-tailed eagle arrives, following Thesarin.

Reedy, a King's Own aide have been dismissed.

The doors were opened a good long while before the event was supposed to start, letting people filter in and partake of both food and drink as they make themselves comfortable and get a good look around the place. People are being directed to make themselves comfortable, gently encouraged to get settled by the staff. Natalia is drifting near the entrance offering smiles and quiet greetings to people as they arrive, thanks and light chat and all of that fun stuff.

Corban makes his way on into the Academy of War, gawking at it this way and that, looking at all of the maps and miniatures on display. It might be his first time here. Sir Corban gets himself a mug of ale and settles down into a chair, waiting for the presentation to begin.

Kit, the grey fox, a tiny man with a BIG unpronounceable name, 1 Greenmarch Guard arrive, following Monique.

13 King's Own Guardsmen, Zelda, the royal messenger, Monique arrive, following Alaric.

Thesarin makes his way into the Academy, looking around the room with a vague scowl that seems to be a resting expression. At the door, Natalia gets a nod and a grunt at the back of his throat that seems to vaguely indicate a greeting.

Natalia is not the only one in attendance of the initial gathering of course, for Kael is rather near her, with Reigna on his arm as he too is greeting those as they enter. Some people are known, this much is clear, while other people might actually be new to him -- nonetheless he inclines his head politely and offers greetings to those that are coming in. Let us face facts though, those that are known might get a little extra treatment, like the clasp of arm that Sir Corban gets in passing or the cant of his head to Thesarin.

Alis walks in alongside several others attending the fundraiser, giving the trio of greeters a polite smile and nod of her head when she walks past. "It all looks perfect." she compliments, before drifting off to march to one of the tables where she can sit and take it all in.

Reigna is at Kael's side, briefly turning her head to murmur last minute instructions to the head server, before she is looking to those who are arriving. She lifts a hand to twist one of the rubicund and opal hairpins that dazzle within the ink-dark coils of her hair, before she settles into greeting those entering.

Striding forward with an almost regal bearing, Seth wears his signature grim expression. Cold steel eyes stare straight ahead as he moves into the great hall, though he does offer a polite nod of the head to those whose gaze he meets. Taking up a up of tea from the refreshments table, he looks for a place to settle down while his rather large Highhill hound pup trails obediently behind him.

Count Kael gets a firm handshake from Sir Corban and murmured congratulations on the accomplishment before him, the member of the King's Own rising to his feet to greet the leader of the Academy. He then settles back down and watches those who enter, taking them in.

Alaric strolls in just a bit fashionably late despite the short trip from the Palace. It's probably his escort's fault (that is, one Minx of the Marches, not his highly professional King's Own retinue). "Natalia, wonderful to see you. Congratulations on the opening," he tells her warmly upon seeing her at the front, then turning as well to greet the Keatons. "Count Kael, Countess Reigna, it's splendid to have you both as my new neighbors," he declares charmingly. "I'm very much looking forward to seeing the Academy's acheivements grow starting from this point."

Arms behind his back Norwood is a stiff and upright presence in the corner of the room. No need to be way too sociable right now, he can just be a presence."

Alis has joined the a walnut wooden table stained a red-brown.

Arriving with Alaric, Monique Greenmarch is a vision in honeyed silk and a Prince's ransom in jewels from the stygian and crimson around her neck to the schorl tiara in her flame-bright hair. "Whisper Natalia. What a lovely gathering." There's a low curtsey to Reigna and Kael. "Countess, Count Keaton. THe King is fortunate indeed. Having had you for neighbors for so long now, I can speak with honesty." She casts Norwood a green-eyed wink from afar.

Norwood checked composure at difficulty 15, rolling 8 higher.

Thesarin nods again toward Kael and Reigna, as he has a moment to take in the scene. "Count, Countess. Good works, it looks like." When Alaric and his escort make their way in, he clasps a fist to his chest, dipping his head low. For all that he's dressed in fine clothes, he still looks exactly like a Shav from out of the Grey Forest. Just a particularly well-dressed one.

Corban is, it must be said, off duty at this particular moment. There are thirteen of his very professional and very able brothers and sisters in arms in the King's retinue. Still, call it a habit. When the Sovereign of Arx enters, Corban takes his ale and drifts just a bit closer over that way. Not looming. But nearby.

Ramona - A Farshaw House Guard arrives, following Lisebet.

Lisebet arrives, following Cullen.

"Your Majesty," Natalia dips into a curtsey for the king, straightening up before too very long. "Thank you. I am glad to see that you could make it." She smiles for his words to the Keatons, and then that smile is being offered Monique's way as well. "Thank you," she says warmly. With the pair of them greeted she sends around a smile to those by the doors, then turns to start making her way in the direction of the stage. She does stop a servant as she goes to collect a glass of wine, sipping from it as she hovers near the edge of the stage and looks to Reigna.

Alessandro arrives as well, looking around curiously at those assembled thus far. He notes his newly made cousin first, and Monique gets a nod as well as a warm smile -- and of course, there's a bow for the king as well, considering they arrived together. Norwood, too, gets a respectful nod, before he makes his way further inside.

Sir Perrach Seiler makes a quiet entry into the grand opening for the Academy of War. There are faces familiar but the man doesn't take too much effort into praising all with greetings. A nod here. A grunted 'hello' occasionally slipps through while on his way to stand somewhere outside the social gathering however very attentive of those that have arrived.

"It is an honor to see you here with us this evening, your majesty." Reigna gives the king a deep curtsy, that itself is executed with perfect and precise etiquette, paired with a wide, friendly grin. "I am very much looking forward to hosting the Winter Festival with yourself and Princess Katarina. I have some fantastic ideas for gifts for the revelers." There is a pause and then she adds, "You should definitely try the cured sausage and red pepper on the crustini, your majesty. It pairs very well with the whiskey being served." Spying Natalia's look, Reigna flashes a happy smile to the Whisper, mouthing something to her.

Willen arrives, following Lou.

Norwood catches a look from across the room and raises an eyebrow upwards at it. (Alis) Carefully he does make his way in the general direction of that particular Valardin princess.

Alis flashes a vaguely mischeivous smile the way of the Laurent Sword when he moves towards the table she's settled herself at. With coffee apparently, rather than wine. And the mug is lifted upward to obscure her face when she leans over to murmur what must be a polite greeting to him.

Norwood has joined the a walnut wooden table stained a red-brown.

When the actual King of the realms makes his appearance, Seth leans into a bow when Alaric and his entourage passes by. He does his best to try not to spill his drink as he does so. Unfamiliar with most of these faces, however, he continues to linger quietly, if somewhat broodingly, off to the side. He waits for the event to begin, while trying to familiarize, visually, with those in attendance.

With nothing better to do this evening, Lou Grayson meanders into the Academy of War grand opening. Her trusty sidekick, Willen, is right behind her. The Senior Archivist is never far whenever she's out in public. She whispers a few quiet words to him, then carefully makes her way over to a table with drink -- getting herself a glass of whiskey. She's careful not to bump her enlarged belly into anyone as she passes through. She wiggles her fingers over at Monique, Reigna, Corban, and a few others, and bows her head reverently toward Alaric. Then she goes to find a place to stand and hold up a wall while she watches and listens.

Arm in arm, Lisebet and Cullen arrive at the headquarters, glancing about the headquarters curiously for a moment, then strolls slowly towards the assembly of people gathered about. A formal bow given with a smile, "Your Majesty, a pleasure. Count and Countess Keaton, Princess Alis, Count Thesarin, Sir Norwood and Sir Corban, cousin Monique, Sir Perrach and brother Alessandro...Pathfinder Lou...if I do not know you, my apologies for missing you."

"Your Majesty," rumbles Kael when the King enters, dipping into a low bow and holding it for an extended amount of time. "You do us an honor by joining us." This pose is kept for a series of beats more before he is straightening, squaring up his shoulders once more and stepping back for the King with his retinue to pass. Monique's greeting is responded to with a flash of a smile, just that, and then a sidelong look toward the bookcase. He, however, does not say anything just yet. Thereafter though with a look toward his cohost as well as his wife, begins to withdraw so that he can lead his wife toward the stage. Naturally there are still nods of greeting as he goes. "Lord Cullen, pleased that you could make it," he rumbles as he travels.

Monique leans in to murmur something in amusement to Alaric, and there's quiet laughter for his return and then a redheaded nod of assent. But Alessandro pulls her attention, and she lifts a hand to call him over. "Cousin! I'm so glad you're here! Come join His Majesty and I? King Alaric, you've met Lord Alessandro Greenmarch?" There's a return of a wave to Lou, and a smile added before she greets Cullen. "Cullen, dashing as ever. Joining the Academy?"

Monique gives Kael a very well-practiced innocent look.

"Lady Monique, you look as radiant as ever! I so envy you your gorgeous hair." Reigna grins to the Greenmarcher, looking to the crimson-haired beauty. "Thank you, for everything, your generousity is extraordinary. And I am beyond delighted to be among those lucky enough to help you plan this legendary Gala with you. I admit, it has been a goal of mine, to learn how to throw a party like you do."

Corban has joined the a large wooden table.

Lisebet curtseys gracefully, as she arrives on Cullen's arm. She glances around, familiar with most of those present, and her eyes gleam a bit with Cullen's greeting. "Good evening, all," she says, taking care of not missing anyone in one fell swoop. "I do hope I am not intruding, but Lord Cullen suggested I might come along with him, and learn perhaps a bit more about this, so as to fill in those of Farshaw who might be inclined to join."

Nodding to Reigna, Natalia flashes another smile. She sips from her wine, then lifts her voice to call to the room, "We are going to get started here in just a few minutes, but we're going to give people the chance to get settled first. Please do make sure that you all get something to drink, and make yourselves comfortable. Our first order of business is going to be the Countess Reigna starting off with the raffle." Her voice carries quite well, pitched to be heard with other conversation going on. And then she sips more wine.

Corban nods to those who greet him on their entry, settling himself down at a table with his ale. Small smiles here and there, taking this in. But then his eyes look up. Oh. A raffle!

Alis listens to that list of names with a hint of laughter showing as her cup gets set back on the table. "Lovely to see you again, Lord Cullen. Lady Lisebet. Please, feel free to join Sir Norwood and I if you like." is offered politely, as she nods towards the others arriving.

Cullen has joined the a walnut wooden table stained a red-brown.

Lisebet has joined the a walnut wooden table stained a red-brown.

Perrach makes a small gesture a nod of the head to Cullen when greeted. "Lord Greenmarch and ... Lady." Not knowing the woman's name locked arm and arm with the short man. "Thought you'd might be one of the faces round here. Good."

Norwood nods in return to Cullen and Alessandro who have entered. He is sitting very very stiffly at a table and listens with one ear while occasionally leaning over to Alis. When the princess makes that invitation she nods, "You are more than welcome."

Cullen's greeting gets one of his own from Alessandro, as well as a wave. "Brother," he says, inclining his head. "I am pleased to truly be able to call you that now." Lisebet, too, gets a nod of greeting, before he turns to see Monique, and he starts that way. "Cousin," he says, his smile widening a little bit. "Thank you. He has not met Lord Alessandro Greenmarch, but to be fair, Lord Alessandro Greenmarch is fairly new." There's humor in his expression as he turns to Alaric, adding, "Your Majesty. Good to see you again." His eyes settle on Reigna then, and there's a nod to her as well. "Countess Keaton, I hope you are well, and enjoying your new addition."

"Lord Cullen. Fine seeinv you

Lou glances over when someone calls out to her. She smiles in Cullen and Lisbet's direction, and inclines her head. "Good evening," she greets to each, taking a delicate sip of her whiskey after she makes her greeting. She peers around the room, perhaps pondering which seat, if any, she should be taking.

"Indeed, I'm sure it will be all the more splendid an event for your assistance, Countess Reigna," Alaric declares approvingly. Off in search of sausage crustini he goes, then, making other greetings on the way. "Count Thesarin, good to see you tonight," he declares regally. "Sir Corban, apologies for disrupting your attempts at pursuing off-duty interests without a pesky Sovereign around. Sir Perrach, excellent to see you again as well. And Princess Alis, always a pleasure." As usual, it's hard to avoid being the center of attention, but he manages it gracefully enough. "Lord Alessandro, Lord Cullen, good evening to you both. And hello again, Lady Lisebet. And Lou! Why, I haven't seen you in ages," he enthuses. Needless to say, he is a monarch at home in the social element, even if it delays his snack acquisition.

Cullen might be short, But Lisebet is shorter, barely five foot flat, she might make Cullen look tall standing next to him. She inclines her head politely, and flashes a bright smile, unruffled, at Perrach. "I'm Lisebet Farshaw," she says. "From Westrock Reach." And then with the invitation, she moves towards the table offered by Norwood and Alis, with a smile, and hopefully not leaving Cullen behind! "Thank you," she says with a polite curtsey.

"You've already accomplished more than I could ever hope to, Countess," Monique tells Reigna in earnest. "I'm honored that you have accepted. I know you'll bring respectability and class, which is something I often struggle with," she adds with a self-deprecating chuckle. She leans over to hug Alessandro, whether he wants it or not. "Lord Alessandro Greenmarch is rapidly becoming my favorite cousin. Shh!" There's a dramatic flare of her eyes to go along with the words, and a sidling closer to Alaric and Cullen's possible retribution. "Oh, a raffle? I can't wait to see the raffle prize!" There's a fond smile and wave to Thesarin as she notices the Riven.

"Your Majesty," Lisebet greets, with a very deep curtsey.

"Your Majesty." Alis inclines her head politely, and with all due solemnity. Her attention turning then towards those at the table to continue a quiet conversation. The monarch deserves a little peace, at least.

"Lord Cullen. Fine seeing you." Thesarin gives a slow nod to the other Prodigal, and takes a moment to look over Lisbet, like he's taking measure, before he gives another nod. He glances over at Monique, and has just a hint of a smile on his face. "And Lady Monique. How now."

Reigna is totally in greeting mode, offering those tangibly warm smiles, her dark eyes gleaming with a special sort of kindness and friendliness as she seeks out more people to greet. "Sir Corban, do not think I missed you!" Reigna flutters her fingers in the direction of the King's Own knight, waving to him and flashing a bright smile. Cullen's approach and greeting is returned in kind, "Lord Cullen! How lovely to see you, are you sleeping any better? I have a few more ideas if the answer is no. We can chat about that later. Lady Lisebet, hello!" Reigna turns back to Monique and her lips fall open and she laughs, "Class? But... all my parties have goats!" She seems genuinely amused by this, laughing delightedly with the Greenmarch lady, "You are so sweet to say so. But go! Try some of the puffs, Marie made them with little bits of salmon and this incredible whipped cheese. So dleightful! They go perfectly with the white wine." She looks over to Natalia at the mention of the raffle and murmurs something to the Whisper with a grin confirming something.

"Unless people come to visit at the Society of Explorers, it's very likely most people haven't seen me in ages," Lou quips, offering with a grin. "I figure if I'm going to be social, I'll do it in the place I'm most comfortable, but this seemed an important enough event to attend tonight. War breeds adventure of a sort, right?" she queries of Alaric. "Besides that, I've been busy with several Explorery operations."

Seth may have heard that there would be a raffle for this event, but he seemed to have forgotten all about it. So when one is announced, he lifts a brow, before glancing out at the others to gauge their response. What he does see is a lot of conversation going on all around him. So many voices! This is when he decides to soothe his nerves with some delicious warm tea and simply waits for this raffle to begin.

Natalia gives a quick nod of ehr head to the murmur from Reigna, flashing a bright smile. She gestures with a tip of her glass up to the stage.

Thesarin has joined the a large wooden table.

"You are always welcome, Your Majesty, whether here at the Academy of War or anywhere else," says Sir Corban, assuring Alaric, who plainly needs no reassurance. But then there is a small smile at the Countess. "Countess Reigna. Congratulations. What a wonderful building. Bravo. You have much to be proud of."

Perrach performs a bowed gesture for the royal, "Your Majesty." Then more are greeted. He's turning away long enough to recite, "Lisbet Farshaw. Never heard of ya. You taken an interest in the war academy then? I know that one does." He indicates to Cullen with a nod of his chin. "Need all the thick headed braniac shits we can get."

Natalia has joined the an exquisite wooden stage.

Celeste, the realist messenger arrives, following Percephon.

With a nod to Natalia, Reigna leans up to kiss Kael's cheek and disengage from him as she begins to make her way towards the stage. She does pause near Corban, grinning, "I can take no credit at all for anything here, this is *all* Kael and Natalia's doing. They are the ones who deserve all the credit. I am simply here to be pretty and sell tickets." Reigna's voice transitions to her Keaton Outside Voice as she ascends to the stage. "Greetings everyone and welcome, welcome to the Academy of War! Let us all take a moment to applaud for the hard work of my husband, Count Kael Keaton for the hours of labor, the months upon months of planning, organizing and deal making he has done to get to this moment! He and Whisper Natalia have done wonders with this place, let us all let them know how impressed we are with the results!"

Reigna has joined the an exquisite wooden stage.

Alessandro isn't going to refuse the hug, and he returns it, too, with a kiss to Monique's cheek. "I will try not to let it slip," he says sotto voce -- though really it's not that sotto, if we're being honest. As Reigna begins to speak, though, he quiets, and once she's done, he joins in the applause.

Corban is overheard praising Kael.

Corban is overheard praising Natalia.

Alis is overheard praising Kael.

Monique shakes her crimson head in laughter to Reigna, but the lure of snacks is true and strong. She brushes by Alaric on her way to the snack table, murmuring something low, laughing, and then moving on, and trying to tug Alessandro with her. "Count Riven. I'm well, how are you?" she says to Thesarin in passing. "And how is the Countess Mia?"

"Indeed, indeed. You've done a superlative job carrying on the Society of Explorers," Alaric tells Lou approvingly. "It's more active than it's ever been in no small part to your hard work. It's fine to see people of all Houses coming together to build an institution that the entire Compact may rely upon, just as we hope to do here with the Academy." He glances to Monique with a smirk at her remark that has her semi-hiding, then Cullen to smile reassuringly. "Well then, they're taking the stage, we'd best find ourselves a seat then, shall we?"

Alis is overheard praising Natalia.

Lisebet joins in the applause, clapping and cheering as is appropriate.

Alaric is overheard praising Kael for: Congratulations on the Academy's opening!

Alaric is overheard praising Natalia for: Congratulations on the Academy's opening!

Without pomp, Percephon finally arrives to attend the Academy official opening. There are brief flashes of sheepish, self-wry smiles that serve as silent apologies to anyone that directly catches his eye. Smoothing his hands down the lapels of his dark woolen waistcoat endlessly in an absent attempt to wipe away the ink staining his fingertips. "This is much more impressive than I ever would have imagined. With an excellent turnout as well. It would have been terribly inconvenient to have shown up unfashionably late and be the only one here. It would make the entrance glaringly obvious." A beat. "Although I did a very good job of doing that just now."

Thesarin is overheard praising Kael.

Thesarin is overheard praising Reigna.

Lou flushes a bit crimson at all of Alaric's praise. She's not used to hearing such things. "Thank you, your Majesty," she tells her cousin. She also nods in Cullen's direction, noticing his proximity. When Reigna takes the stage, she looks around the room a moment to see if she can't find a seat.

Seth's attention follows Reigna when she works her way up the stage. Matching faces with names, or trying to, the Steelhart lord looks to both Kael and Natalia when they are mentioned. Joining in the with the others, he offers some applause, though now that his attention is brought to the building itself, he takes the time to examine the great hall in full new. "Congratulations on being able to see the fruition of all your endeavors and such."

When Reigna is leaning up to kiss his cheek, Kael bows his head and helps her move up to the stage. Some habits are evidently hard to break no matter how unnecessary that such might be at the moment. He too joins the stage, though he actually keeps well off to the side so that his wife has the moment. When she is putting the attention back on him, he ducks his head, flashes her a smile and then turns to flourish a bow to the gathering. An embarrassed bow, but a bow nonetheless. Maybe he's a little red at the ears though.

Alaric has joined the a large wooden table.

Alis joins in with the applause and waves to Percephon when he makes his late arrival. "Hey Stranger!" And she does indeed look pleased to see him.

When she realizes what Reigna is doing, Natalia laughs. She lifts her glass to the woman on the stage and then to the crowd, bowing her head here and there to acknowledge the cheers and the applause. "Thank you," she does say before laughing again at Kael's bow. She's managing to avoid turning red, but she does sip more wine.

Food does seem a good thing to get at the moment, and so Alessandro is happy to be pulled along, with a nod to Thesarin as they pass and Monique greets the other man. He picks up a glass from the table, and then another, handing one to Monique. Unless she has one already, in which case, he does not.

Norwood claps along with everyone oh-so-politely.

"Cousin, Lord Alessandro has already passed me up? Well, I'll chalk it up to my not having visited the hot springs yet and comforting myself in that knowledge," Cullen remarks to Monique with a quiet chuckle. And then his attention focuses upon Countess Keaton, listening - and then breaks into a round of clapping for Count Keaton and all involved.. Lou gets a bright smile and a wave, "Lou. Always a pleasure, and not often enough."

Thesarin grunts toward Monique with another nod. "In good health. Set with worries. Same as ever. Her brother, Lord Nigel, has come to Arx; reckon that's a help." He nods again, and joins in the applause for Count and Countess Keaton.

"Alis, I assure you that the rumors of my disappearance were likely accurate." With a twinge of a smirk, Percephon is already moving to join Alis at the walnut table. Although, in passing, he lifts a hand to greet his cousin, Corban, as he is likely on duty this evening with the King in attendance. To Monique, a bow of the head an a flash of a grin. There's a couple of bows in there for the higher ranked nobles and royals; the deepest being for Alaric before he drops into a chair. "Whew!"

Percephon has joined the a walnut wooden table stained a red-brown.

As soon as the applause has dimmed enough for her to speak over the remaining sound, Reigna begins to speak again. This is something she seems utterly at ease with, despite the large group of people. She is at home on the stage, offering that same wide-eyed, effusive joy, that radiant warmth that shines forth from her, given as a gift to each person she makes eye contact with. "Thank you! Thank you so much! Now, I will be selling tickets for the next hour for our raffle. We have only one prize, but I think you'll all agree it will be a good one!" She looks to her husband and Natalia before taking in the crowd once more. "The Academy is all about training up those willing to take up the defense of our people, to serve the compact, to be part of something great, and strong to keep those we love safe. There is no single way to do this, no one path alone. There are thosse who take up sword and shield, or bow or spear, to fight for their fellow man against the tyranny of evil. There are those who can understand the perspectives of many, who through patience, determination and communication can bridge gaps thought unbridgable. There are still other avenues, supporting, healing, educating, information gathering... so many ways to help one another. In the spirit of this, we will be providing intensive training to a person of the winner's choice, be they a bodyguard, an assistant, a diplomat or someone gifted in gaining information. We will train this person and see to their salary for as long as they are with you! Now! Who can say that is not a prize, eh?"

Monique's laughter for Cullen is bright, and she accepts the glance from Alessandro with a beatific smile, then nods to Thesarin. "Ah, wonderful, glad to hear." Then she's on her way back to her escort for the evening, and bringing Alessandro along for the ride. "Look!" she tells the King, with a plate /full/ of snacks. "See what a good date I make? Where to, Your Majesty?" And whatever he murmurs has her laughing quietly, before turning her attention to the stage, and casting Percephon a warmer-than-warm smile as she does.

Reigna is grinning brightly, looking around at the reactions, "Now! The tickets will be for sale for the next hour, 5 writs per noble, 2 per commoner per ticket. We will also accept silver in amounts equal to 325 per writ."

Alaric seems more than delighted at Monique's snack-collecting endeavours. "I am nearly pleased beyond words," he declares to her. "But I never run out of words." He produces a pair of glasses of whiskey. He's done his own sourcing. He settles in and applauds the announcement from the stage. "As befitting an institution of learning. Well done!" he proclaims approvingly.

Norwood checked composure at difficulty 15, rolling 10 higher.

Alessandro snags something delicious off the plate as he and Monique make their way back to the king, and he pops it into his mouth, chewing appreciatively before he takes a sip of wine.

"We're to meet sometime, I believe." Lou says to Cullen. Then her attention quickly gets diverted. Wait. There are snacks along with drinks? Lou glances over at the tables again, her curiosity piqued. She excuses herself and wanders over there, again making sure not to hit anyone with her growing belly. Then, she piles upon the oddest assortment of snacks that a pregnant Princess can ever put together before /then/ finally finding a seat.

Monique has joined the a large wooden table.

Lou has joined the a large wooden table.

Alessandro has joined the a large wooden table.

Once hearing of the competition Sir Perrach pulls himself away from wallflower duties to enter his name in. He approaches Reigna and makes small converstion, "'Bout time somethin like this got started. Good work."

"That sounds like a very remarkable raffle, Countess," Lisebet calls out. "Very well done. Are you accepting all writs or any kind in particular?" Because she might as well ask. She at one point raises her hands as though in surrender, but in general, she's listening attentively to Reigna's speech and the conversation at her table.

Reigna looks to Lady Lisebet and answers as she is starting to hand out tickets to those who are already purchasing them, "Any writs at all, my lady."

Monique applauds alongside Alaric, and there's a determined gleam in her eyes as the prize is announced. She looks over to Percephon, brings her fingers to her eyes, points and him, and them back to her own eyes.

"Thank you, Countess Reigna," Natalia finally steps to the front of the stage as well, lifting her own voice again. "Please do see the Countess to participate in the raffle. Now -- I wanted to thank everyone for coming, tonight. I know that everyone likely has a great many questions about our plans, and how we intend to make those plans into a reality. Count Kael is going to do a bit of explaining here in a minute, and then we'll take some questions from all of you while we make sure the raffle gets taken care of. We're not going to be particularly formal, so please feel free to continue eating and calling for drinks and the like. I will ask that any questions about the academy itself please be held until we prompt for them."

Perrach has joined the a large wooden table.

While finding the idea of a raffle slightly odd, for whatever reason, Seth begins to warm up to this one in particular once the big prize is mentioned. "That's quite a generous gesture and one that I surely will not pass up. Setting his cup of tea aside on some random table, he reaches into a pocket and heads towards Reigna with his canine pup trailing behind him, "Countess Reigna, I would like to purchase a ticket and once more, I applaud your good work here today." A small attempted smile forming a smirk upon his lips.

Percephon throws his hands up, defenseless, in the face of that look that Monique throws his way. "Not this time, my lady Monique. Fresh out of writs and good luck. I am afraid that a cog was my upper limit." Another tilted smirk-smile, lifting a shoulder up in a shrug. "I will offer to train your new assistance, should you win the raffle."

Speaking with Reigna briefly, Cullen hands over a small stack of papers with a nod and a smile.

Monique's smile for Percephon is almost ethereal. "You, cousin, are the /best/! But the King is trying to win the assistant! What hope have the rest of us?" she teases, jabbing Alaric with a not-subtle elbow.

When the Count's name is called, Kael is moving forward to take more of a center position on the stage. Naturally when he passes by his wife, he is letting his fingers glide across her upper arm in a lazy touch. It is not until he takes point at the precise center position within the stage that he is nodding his head toward Natalia by way of gratitude and then addresses the gathering. "Let me begin by thanking you all for joining us here tonight." Let it not be said that Kael does not have a sufficient speaking voice. His, too, carries with ease in the large chamber. "I look around and I see very many people that I can call ally or that I have clasped arm in the name of friendship. This is beyond individual House, or Ward, and rather involves the well being of the Compact. The idea of clasping hands for the betterment not just of ourselves, not just for the people of Arx, but rather for the people of Arvum. These are pretty -- or not so pretty -- words however. What does this mean?" Kael is pausing for a moment, just that, before beginning anew, "This means that the Academy of War is an institution within Arx that has a headquarters here and we will train the citizens that come to us in the strategy and art of war, yes, but there is something much larger that is happening here. A consideration of tactics across fealties, for as has been discussed, what might be a commonplace maneuver in the north might be unique to the south and can be particularly adapted. This is for those that are within Arx, but let us be honest, for those of us that reside within Arx, we typically speak easily across fealties."

Kael continues, "Now let us consider those far away from this capital. The Colleges of War and the Academies there. What of them? We are one Compact, but each area has a particular regional influence. I have started folding some of these colleges into our alliance, so that curriculums can be shared and, from abroad, a study can be made of various tactics. The hope is that when next a great threat comes, certain maneuvers and tactics -- they are commonplace, understood, and easily recognized by the commanders and soldiers. Let there be no more confusion on the battlefield than need be." Another pause here, but it is clear that the Keaton is not quite finished yet. At least Vern, his assistant, is kind enough to bring him a glass of water so that he might drink from it. Given the sidelong look toward Natalia, he might have learned that trick from her.

Tipping her glass to Kael, Natalia offers a big smile his way, then looks out over the crowd again, watching faces and taking in peoples' reactions. The Whisper stays quiet for the time being, not speaking up to interrupt Kael's speech.

Reigna continues to hand out her tickets to those who come to collect them, or send their people to. This is keeping her very busy, doing a pretty brisk business. But she does pause long enough to listen to Kael's speech, looking so very proud of her husband and cheering in the wake of his words.

At the pause Norwood raises his glass in KAel's direction a silent cheer rather than doing something louder. More composed.

Thesarin nods toward Kael at the stage, and raps his hand against the table loudly, giving a nod and a lift of his glass toward the stage.

Percephon's snorts at Monique's beatific smile, then ducks his head to chuckle, "That expression? Not working. Try again. Although, whom I to criticize the marvelous attempt, my lady Monique."

It is a speech indeed. After that moment of pause, Kael is continuing on with, "We have reached out and summoned allies to the cause, have clasped hands with them. Allies such as the Scholars for we too are of Vellichor and they recognize us, we look toward the Physician's Guild to train and consider the unique needs of the healers on or near the battlefield, and we heavily will also feature a division of diplomacy: focus before battle, during war itself, and of course the important recovery stage, the healing. We are open to more allies, more clasped hands."

Count Keaton clears his throat. "There is also the fact that, after the recent war, we have suffered many blows. We, being the Compact. Truly it is the smaller villages, those on the outskirts that lost dedicated soldiers that suffer the greatest, weakened and with attack. The funds leftover from paying our commoner instructors -- it will be used to aid those villages, towns, cities, that come to us for personalized tactics or strategic defense plans -- and it is my hope that further good can manifest. That, from this point, with luck, we can branch satellite schools that are not just folding into our alliance, but rather are born from this start point. Thank you all for joining me, joining us, in this vision." The bow that he delivers at the end of these words, it is far less embarrassed than the flourished thing that he managed earlier when his wife is calling him out. No water is spilled, either. He manages to keep it held aloft and draws back then for the Whisper to take centerstage.

Lisebet's gaze goes to the speaker, and she also glances around the room, taking in reactions and noting who is there, at least that she recognizes. She is otherwise settled gently in her seat, smoothing her skirts, though she does make sure to get some of those raffle tickets as well, when there is opportunity.

"Hardly sporting if I overbid for the prize just because I could, wouldn't you say?" Alaric observes loftily to Monique with a faint grin once finished applauding for Kael's remarks. "I like to think my donations have been measured to balance generosity with fairness so that everyone might raffle in the hopes of a victory."

Alis sends someone over to Reigna with some silver, leaving her free to lift her cup in agreement with everything Kael has said. "Well spoken, Count Keaton. Well spoken."

Perrach pounds a fist a few times on the table following Kael's speech, rattling his plate and glass, "Well fuckin said!"

Perrach is overheard praising Kael for: Arm them all from women to toddlers!

Monique casts a disbelieving look between both Percephon and Alaric, but she's cheering Kael so she can't make scathing retorts just now. Her gleaming green eyes promise them in the future, though, along with the haughty cast of her fiery head.

Monique is overheard praising Kael.

Monique is overheard praising Natalia.

The calls out in the room, conversation about who might be lucky, who might throw in overbids, that gets a smile from Lisebet, but no comments. She cheers along with everyone for the Count's speech.

Seth watches Kael's speech with a stony expression, though on seeing Alis lift her cup to the man's words, the Steelhart lord does the same once he returns to his table. "Yes, from women to toddlers...hear, hear." He murmurs, repeating a voice in the crowd.

Alessandro looks up from the table then, as well, and Percephon gets a belated, though heartfelt, smile and wave, before he leans in toward Monique when she says something low to him, and replies in kind.

Percephon lifts his chin up, offering an affable grin in return to Alessandro.

"Well said, Count Kael," Natalia tells him, looking out over the people assembled before she steps forward again. "He and I will be leading the academy jointly," she explains for the crowd. "I will be handling the diplomatic branch, as well as administrative functions; he will lead the tactical branch. We will be paying those commoners that choose to work as instructors, both for teaching here and for those that go out to those that cannot come here. We are right now looking at a membership structure to pay those salaries and for supplies for those trips -- that membership charge will be waived for any that serve as instructor or participate in missions. We'll also be running regular get togethers such as this one to ask for contributions, but I promise that you will always get this quality of drink." It *is* the good stuff, too.

It is here that Kael is moving in to step forward once more, to take his place next to Natalia Whisper. "What the contributions are also going to, it should be noted, is the initiation of scholarships for those that choose to serve the Compact, but cannot afford the cost of attending either due to duties of family or the institution costs themselves. They may choose to attend here within the Academy of War Headquarters or choose one of the colleges that has folded into our curriculum. Or, by the gods willing, the satellite schools that we resurrect in the future. It is with my great pleasure that I announce our first scholarship. Due to a generous gift in celebration of Lord Talis Storm Keaton's birth -- my second born son, for those of you unfamiliar just yet with this name -- by Lady Monique Greenmarch, the first annual scholarship has been initiated. This scholarship is specifically for someone of the Lowers, and as said, they may attend anywhere from here within Arx to another location, and at graduation it would be an honor, if they wish, to have them amongst our ranks."

Kael is overheard praising Monique for: For the resurrection of the first annual scholarship within the Academy of War.

Reigna cheers at this announcement, getting up to her feet and looking to Lady Monique, calling out, "To Lady Monique Greenmarch!" Yes, she uses her Keaton voice. So it's loud.

Monique looks up as Kael announces what he announces, and the Minx of the Marches blinks. And blinks again. And for once, flushes bright pink and ducks her crimson head.

Seth is overheard praising Reigna.

Seth is overheard praising Kael.

Alaric cheers approvingly for Monique! But ran out of praises. (boo!) Well, there's one for the post-cron catch up list. "Very generous indeed," he declares grandly.

Percephon's head goes up, eyes crinkling at the edges when he smiles, and he quietly applauds for the announcement. "An excellent contribution."

Alis is overheard praising Monique.

Lisebet cheers loudly, along with everyone else. Very nice! Also out of praises.

Alessandro is overheard praising Kael.

Alessandro is overheard praising Reigna.

Alessandro is overheard praising Natalia.

Alessandro is overheard praising Monique.

Seth is overheard praising Natalia.

Seth is overheard praising Monique.

When Kael steps up beside her, Natalia looks to him. She smiles for his words and nods her agreement, then looks back to the crowd again. "We now open the floor for questions," she says. "Or comments, if anyone has anything they would like to be heard." She finishes off her wine, and a young redheaded woman in more fur than cloth grabs the empty glass from beside the stage, offering up a fresh glass.

Cullen cheers loudly from his spot at the table, beaming at Count Keaton's announcement.

Lou adds her voice to the cheering, loudly. No one really wants her to try and praise them. Not really. She's incredibly bad at it.

Monique looks up, fixing Kael with a 'well done, sir' stare and tilt of her chin. Her cheeks are still bright with shock and commingled embarrassment..

When Kael announces the scholarship, Alessandro's eyebrows raise, but then he joins the cheers, his smile widening as he turns to look at his newly minted cousin with obvious pride.

Norwood claps respectfully and absolutely responsibly from his place.

"Natalia, are there any specific requirements or qualifications you're looking for in terms of instructors? I think I might like to try my hand at diplomacy instruction now and again, if it's possible to accomodate my limited availability for it," Alaric inquires in a clear voice from his table.

"Where do I drop my name in the helmet to teach at this academy? Folks could use the tactics of Thrax at their disposal. Especially if they want to live." Sir Perrach asked of Kael.

"The willingness to teach and demonstrated understanding of the topic," Natalia answers Alaric without hesitation, sending a glance between Perrach and Kael for the question offered there. She shifts her gaze back to Alaric though, keeping her answer focused on the King. "All those that wish to teach will be interviewed, and we will be seeking those both for a to be developed curriculum and for proposals of other subjects, if something someone is interested in isn't on offer. I am *quite* sure we can accomodate your schedule, your majesty."

Naturally when the King is speaking, Kael is shifting his attention there. Wouldn't you know it, when he is asking of diplomacy he shoots a swift grin to Natalia. He, himself, is moving off toward Perrach, coming to the edge of the stage and offering forth his hand toward him. "Count Kael Keaton," he says introducing himself though this is not necessary. "You will be joining one of House Grimhall and my cousin, Count Turo Navegant." He steps back then and nods to Natalia, raising his voice as he adds, "As we progress, we will move to those that have Head Instructor positions for certain fields but there is a great benefit to allow others to have tactical discussions at the table. The Head Instructors are not necessarily assigned for greater skill level, but they are those that are willing to put in more of a time commitment."

Perrach rose from seat as Kael approached, meeting the man's hand to clasp with his own. "Sir Perrach Seiler." The knight introduces himself. "Wonderful, I'll have friends." The man comments flatly.

As a quiet messenger arrives to pass a missive to Percephon, he rises from his seat to intercept it, that lanky figure leaning in to murmur a word to the messenger before they excuse themselves. He breaks the seal on the parchment and skims it, briefly, before he exhales a breath -- "Beg your pardon, all, I need to tend to this. I wish everyone well."

Reigna overs a silent wave to Percephon as he exits, and goes back to simply watching as Kael and Natalia handle to questions with aplomb.

Alis gives Percephon's arm a quick squeeze when he stands to leave, and a smile. "I'll see you soon." she promises, gaze darting over towards Perrach. Another tactician? Yay!

"We will need them, Sir Perrach," says Kael in a most solemn sort of voice, clasping the other's arm firmly and nodding to him before offering a more quiet, "Vern will have some paperwork for you to look over." Vern will be doing precisely that as well as Kael starts to mingle, moving through the gathering to see if there any additional questions that come forth. Ah, Percephon's departure is noted with a chin-up and a flash of a smile. "Thank you for coming, Lord Halfshav."

"Splendid. Count Kael, Natalia, thank you for the clarification," Alaric declares regally, and that seems to be it for his inquiry.

Lisebet also gives Percephon a nod and a smile. "Take care," she offers gently.

Percephon has left the a walnut wooden table stained a red-brown.

Celeste, the realist messenger leaves, following Percephon.

"You are welcome," Natalia tells Alaric before looking once more to the crowd. She beams over Reigna's way wherever the Countess is, then says to the gathering at large, "Does anyone else have any questions before we do the drawing for the raffle?"

Monique lifts a hand to wave to Percephon, watching the Halfshav go with the fondest of expressions. Her attention is divided then between the question and answer session, and the talk at the table.

Lou raises from her seat, smiling at everyone from her table. "It was good catching up with you all. I should be departing though to tuck in my daughter, as I won't have too many nights with her alone soon enough."

Lou has left the a large wooden table.

Lisebet smiles and waves to Lou, as she is leaving.

Thesarin looks to Lou, and lifts his empty cup in her direction. "Fine seeing you; have a care."

Reigna has rolled 1 239-sided dice: 16

Only when it appears everyone is ready for the raffle draw, Reigna gets to her feet and moves over to the large bowl of tickets. She flashes a grin to all there, "Thank you all for coming tonight! And the lucky winner is..." She fishes around, clearly not looking at the numbers, until she grabs one at random, "Nummmmber sixteen! Sir Perrach! I believe this is your lucky evening!"

Willen leaves, following Lou.

Kael is continuing to walk along the route of the gathering, though he pauses momentarily near Norwood to just set a hand on his shoulder. He squeezes once and looks on the verge of saying something to the other man, but in the end he continues with host duties. It's about the time that Reigna is moving to the raffle point that he is rejoining the stage and settling in next to his wife. When the announcement is made, Kael is applauding.

"What?" Perrach turns from the table when hearing his name called. "Does it come with rum? If there's no rum I ain't that lucky."

Kael is overheard praising Perrach for: Congratulations!

Kael is overheard praising Natalia for: For all the work that has been done on the Academy of War.

Alis applauds for Perrach having the winning ticket, and then when it's good timing will give her gracious farewells and make her way to the exit.

Kael is overheard praising Reigna for: For many hours spent listening to me concerning my visions, for your support, your dedication and your love.

Alis has left the a walnut wooden table stained a red-brown.

Sir Rhys, a Valardin Knight, Laurene, a military adjutant leave, following Alis.

There is applause for the winner of the raffle. Natalia lifts her voice to call, "And we turn the floor over now to general socializing. Anyone interested in signing up as an instructor, please send us a missive here. We will be in touch." That said, she makes to step down off of the stage.

Norwood stills when Kael comes and sets his hand upon his shoulder. Silently the knight bows - it's a feat when he's not standing - to the count as he takes the moment. Then rising he leaves the table himself and drifts outwards at a suspiciously similar time as everyone else at his table. There was probably some kind of conspiracy there.

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