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Artshall Spring Fête of Blossoms

Artshall Spring Fête of Blossoms

With the ravages of winter having faded away into the riotous display of colors and life that is spring in Artshall, the Laurents usher in the annual grand ball held in the stronghold of their duchy. Come and join them as the orchards come into full bloom, displaying a brilliant array of white and pink blossoms, as the flowers in the gardens erupt into a dazzling floral display and as the infamous bees get to buzzing once again.

Through the night there will be songs played about heroes long ago, as well as more contemporary and popular options. And vendors will be offering up for sale a variety of goods from talented crafters across the Compact, but with many pieces sourced from Arx itself and brought over to the Oathlands.

For such a popular seasonal event in the Oathlands there are some guidelines, but they're simple really. Attire? Oathlands themed seemed in some way. A little armor or metal should be added somewhere to your garments, even if it's just an accent piece. And keeping in time with springtime flowers? Colors. Bring out the beautiful spectrum of options that seasilk can be found in, bring glittering gemstones and anything else that catches the eye.

The Laurents look forward to seeing you there.


Jan. 7, 2019, 8:30 p.m.

Hosted By

Cristoph Jael Nicia


Thorley Alis Miranda Sanya Alarissa Reese Harlex Gianna Norwood Kael Elsa Violet Reigna Lilia Sorrel Willow Brady Khanne Lisebet Ysbail Veronica Demura Niklas Sabella Helena Amari Danvir Pharamond Kedehern Macda Galen




Arx - Ward of House Valardin - Laurent Manse - Main Hall

Largesse Level


Comments and Log

Nadine arrives, following Jael.

2 Novice Keaton Huntsmen, River, a juvenile Oakhaven bloodhound, Barf, the Bog Dog arrive, following Amari.

2 Rubino and Zaffria guards, Brenlin, Aide-de-Camp arrive, following Miranda.

Bayberry, an Oakhaven juvenile bloodhound, Steadfast, a dunskin stallion courser leave, following Norwood.

Bayberry, an Oakhaven juvenile bloodhound, Steadfast, a dunskin stallion courser arrive, following Norwood.

Norwood drops a swear jar - please deposit loose change here.

Alis has joined the Southern Banquet Table.

Norwood has joined the several tables and benches.

Yesterday was the jousting tournament, which saw Marquis-Consort Rymarr Deepwood bring home first place. Today, the festival has been in full swing with people flitting from place to place around the stronghold. Here in the grand ballroom the official party has begun. A trio of musicians has begun to play and they tell a story about a betrothed couple that start out much in love, but as the song goes on, they're split apart and a young mother flees for her life. Not exactly the light hearted started to a party one might expect, but Oathlanders do like their dramatic tales and every hero's story must start somewhere.

Arriving at the party - Thorley and Violet went without the children tonight - they wanted some adult time together. With his arm settled and Violet's arm resting on it, the pair are looking around. "Where would you like to sit, my love?" the knight asks curiously.

"Oh, this one's my favorite! I think. Is it the one where the young mother, after fleeing for her life, learns to use a sword and wreaks vengeance on the marauders that killed her betrothed? Because that's the BEST version." The version Alis made up in her head most likely, as the song starts playing and she is on her second glass of wine. The first glass was to help her be comfortable wearing a /dress/, Cristoph. Instead of armor like she wanted to. She's all smiles now though!

3 Telmarine Armsmen arrives, following Lilia.

Miranda wanders into the ballroom, glancing about as she arrives. She looks to the decorations as much as to the people here. Escorting her seems to be her lanky sidekick, Brenlin, who looks far too uncomfortable for a shindig such as this. Miranda does have her arm linked through his, patting his arm reassuringly with her opposite hand. "Just a whirl around the ballroom and then, of course, you may flee." She smiles at him and he looks, at best, dubious. "I cannot do that. If anything should happen to you.." Miranda waves him off and glances to the guards hovering behind them, "I have back up. It's a party, Brenlin. Lighten up and have fun."

Sanya Grimhall arrives in the main hall, glancing about the room with an approving smile. She begins to sway as the music plays, eyes on the tables available, to decide where to sit.

Alarissa's wending her way around the room, already spending far too much but none the less pleased with what she got. "Is it that version? There's so many of them." She calls over to Alis.

Reese arrives while adorned in her pink armored clothing and while toting along her weapons. She has pink ribbons tangled up in her golden locks. The girl glances over the party, having a gentle smile. She waves over to Alarissa upon noticing her and then smiles to Sanya.

Harlex arrives at some point not in his armor which is currently residing back in his room. Instead, in street leathers, he is no less the dark swordsman. Not exactly the proper attire for a feast but it does cut a figure. His sword is, of course, peace-bound with a blood crimson silk fastened to the band on the scabbard attached to the hilt. A promise that he won't start any spontaneous combats. He focuses on his second passion--equally bad for his health--and searches stands with a whisky glass. Standing as he is, sipping from his drink. He looks like someone let the riff-raff in to the party.

Gianna makes her way in, clad in a gown with a puffy skirt that looks like nothing so much as an upended peony, with layers upon layers of silk petals. Her right arm is covered from shoulder to fingertip in rubicund armor, the delicate shade of rose gold. Spring? Yes. Metal? Yes.

Nicia has joined the a whimsical wooden pony.

Norwood is getting really good at finding a corner in the party and sticking himself into it. He has his arms crossed over his chest as he listens to the story with one hear and practices a severe expression with the other.

With the party underway, Cristoph is standing on the platform by the three chairs. He's having an indepth conversation with one of the guests, eyeballing the entrance as the room begins to fill up with all those who have made the trip to Artshall. He glances about, likely trying to catch sight of Nicia or Jael, probably Norwood too. There's one kid here, that would be Eadric. When he spots the baron enter, he dashes across the floor and practically knocks someone else over. Young heirs can be /so/ rude. "POP."

"Doesn't matter, I'm pretending it is!" Alis calls back to Alarissa. "Baron Norwood, come sit by me. If I had to dress nice, you have to smile." She points at the chair beside her, and just /looks/ at him. "Or maybe make sure the little one doesn't accidentally knock someone into the punch bowl."

Kael's naturally in attendance with his wife on his arm, rumbling a low few words to her with a tilt of his head when he withdraws and a flash of a smile offered to her. Such things are commonplace with the Marquis and Marquessa Keaton, however. What might be different is the fact that Oathbinder is no longer settled on his hip, but rather is worn across his back, while Brianne's Song has moved back to its rightful place. He catches sight of his attendant, Vern, and beckons the lad over so that he can murmur in his ear -- yes, he is keeping secrets from his wife, evidently. Once the young man is off, he's turning back to Reigna. "Where shall we sit?"

Speaking of rubicund, Thorley is wearing a newer piece from Ferron Arms as he grins aside to Violet. "Would you care to dance?" he asks. "I mean, after we find a seat."

It's a Laurent family event, and the Duchess is in attendence. But, much as usual, she seems to be keeping herself mostly to the fringes of things, a glass of whiskey in her hand, eyes scanning the crowd of people that have come to join in the festivities. After spotting Cristoph through the crowd, though, Nicia begins to make her way towards him, just in time to watch Eadric run off towards Norwood, brows lifting, "Pop?"

Elsa struts into the room, her near scandalous attire worn with the utmost confidence even in the midst of the Oathlands. The older woman seems to have not a care in the world as she makes her way towards the host and hostess of the Fete, "Cousin Cristoph! Its been simply ages, I see your son is doing well." She turns an amused grin after young Eadric before looking back to the Duke.

Violet has arrived with Thorley. She even wore a dress. And armor. She is dressed for the occassion. "I would love too, but look, there is Princess Reese. Let's see where she is sitting. We've not gotten the chance to just talk for a bit."

Reigna is on Kael's arm, wearing *gasp* pink and purple rather than black and green. As they enter the ballroom, she catches sight of Norwood and looks up to murmur to Kael, "Is it just me, or is Baron Clement's one ear, looking far more severe than the other?" She looks up at Kael at the question and points towards Alis and Norwood, "Shall we join Her Highness?"

Along as well comes at least one of the Telmar; Lilia, in this case, in proper Valardin fashion, silks and armors, though no armaments to match She's quick enough to look around; just as quick to sail off slightly sideward and out of the way because she has spotted the lanterns hung from the ceilings and apparently is called to gaze up at them for a few moments.

Reese peeks over to Violet, having a smile for the Baroness and well the for the Baron to. "Hi!" She says toward them. She then waves to Reigna and Kael as well. The princess seems to be in a cheerful mood.

Norwood clearly was not expecting the young Laurent heir to be at the party, but he unbends enough to kneel down and sweep the heir up in his arms and sets the young man on his hip. "Eadric." Slightly tisk-y with the youngster than he was looking a moment before, "You forgot to bow to some very important people. Here." He's just going to take the heir over to Alis. "Princess Alis," And NOrwood, SO TALENTED, bows with the boy on his hip.

Sorrel can't really leave the kid at home, what with it not being born yet. She doesn't look like she'll be doing much strenuous dancing even though she wore a pretty dress because she looks like she'll have the kid at any given moment. She drifts around the edge of the party, looking pleased and maybe a bit tired.

Cristoph calls out to Norwood from across the room, "Baron Clement! Please stop giving the boy, fizzkey!" It's a joke, right? Eadric clings to Norwood's leg and reluctantly bows. But he's two and he keeps mumbling about pop pop pop and holding on his leg. Eventually a nanny is going to show up and save him. The duke can only shrug to Nicia and spread his hands before he descends from the platform and moves his first table visit.

Cristoph has joined the Southern Banquet Table.

Harlex's standing around begins to make him feel like people are looking at him. He sips from his whisky glass, his cold and bright gaze peering at a few guests who peer at him. He's certainly a commoner in a room full of silks. The swordsman meanders until he finds a table and settles into a seat.

Harlex has joined the Southern Banquet Table.

"Hello, Your Highness." Thorley greets Reese in return with a bow of his head. "We were just trying to figure out where to sit, and thought we would sit with you, if that was acceptable?" he asks curiously.

A song concludes and there's a brief period of jaunty music before the next begins. The story of a child taken in by a beekeeper, their journey as a family and the heartwrenching loss as he loses the man he comes to know as his father. Then the second blow, an attempt to find the family of his birth only to be cast out and exiled.

Cristoph also definitely doesn't not notice his cousin talking to him and stops before reaching the table, "Cousin Elsa! It's good of you to make the journey home. How were the roads?"

Violet moves with Thorley towards Reese and gives her a warm smile. The baroness manages a decent curtsy. She always did prefer to bow, but she is in skirts tonight so cursty it is. "How are you doing, your highness?" She asks as she glances over at the banquet table. It's just a quick glance.

Sanya returns Reese's smile, offering her a wave, before approaching Alarissa. Dipping her head to the princess in greeting, she smiles kindly. "Your highness, good evening. Your dress tonight is marvellous, I must say."

Drysi, a young shaman apprentice, 2 Redrain Guards arrive, following Khanne.

Alis waves happily to Kael and Reigna, encouraging them to sit near her as well once she hears the suggestion made. Of course, to Eadric and Norwood she gives her most gracious, pleasantly buzzed, greeting. "Good evening, Lord Eadric. It's very nice to see you here. You're dressed so handsomely." she offers. "And it's nice to see you as well, Baron Norwood." And is that... sheer fabric? Her eyes pop open wide when Elsa's dress is fully taken in. Possible choking on wine, news at 11.

Ramona - A Farshaw House Guard, 3 Farshaw novice guards, 1 Farshaw trained guards, Bigsby arrive, following Lisebet.

Miranda's gown has flowers upon it and her 'metal' is the sword at her hip. Brenlin walks by her side, the pair pausing to listen to the music and the song playing. She smiles to a few she knows, Violet and Thorley, Reese, Harlex, Alarissa, and Sorrel. She does meander towards Sorrel who seems to be doing what she's doing. "Princess Sorrel, greetings. Are you doing well? You and," she nods to her rather rotund belly, "the little one?"

Reese looks over to Thorley. "I would be very honored." she says toward them both. "I don't really care where we sit, but.." She says, trailing off and smiling over at Sorrel. "Princess Sorrel hi!" She then peeks to Nicia. "Oh, wow, what an amazing dress. I love it, Duchess." She then blows Miranda a kiss.

Willow cuts an unimpressively small figure as she wanders in, sans retinue and still looking over a shoulder toward the garden left behind. An eccentric mix of clothing drapes her small form, silks painted with delicate blossoms from the waist down, spanning hues of a sunset sky, and her torso bound up in some cross between corset and cuirass, with scraps of dark leather binding a bodice of pale downy fur. Rather than gravitate toward anyone, she seeks an out of the way spot on the periphery, listening intently to the music.

Gianna takes her ruffly skirted self over toward Cristoph, inclining her head to those she knows along the way. There's Harlex, and Princess Sorrel - there's a calculating glance at the tiara and earrings, and a subtle inclination of her head. Nicia and her gown, Violet's lovely ring, Elsa's scandalous attire --- Gianna is always watching. She takes a moment to incline her head more deeply to Cristoph. "Thank you, everything looks lovely."

"His ear?" asks Kael, a flicker of confusion evident on his features when he is peering over toward the Clement. His head tilts, but there is no response just yet. Still, after that moment of observation he is inclining his head toward his wife by way of agreement. Starting to head in that direction, he catches sight of Reese and is dipping into a bow. "Your highness! A good evening to you," he offers forth in an amiable fashion. Once the bow and greeting is performed, he is making a point of snaring a spot close to Alis, though he pulls the chair for his wife first before sitting down himself.

Kael has joined the Southern Banquet Table.

Gruffudd, a ridiculously fluffy large cat, Inka, A sharp witted assistant arrive, following Ysbail.

Reese has joined the Northern Banquet Table.

Thorley has joined the Northern Banquet Table.

Brady finds his way into the main hall, sauntering with unearned confidence. Looking better dressed than he perhaps ever has, in a mix of armor and cloth he keeps to himself, wandering about, engaging nobody with more than a distant smile and nod. When he spots Harlex, he makes a beeline towards the man, finding a glass of hard apple cider along the way.

Reigna has joined the Southern Banquet Table.

Harlex sits back in his chair, taking in the party. He too spies Elsa. Although he doesn't choke on his drink. He's very familiar with that type of fashion after all. "Lady Elsa, you're goin' to kill some of these Oathlanders lookin' fine like that." His attention shifts toward Brady who is beelining toward him. A skeptical if threatening intensity to his eyes follows.

Jael is late, but only looks slightly ruffled as she makes her way in, patting at her braids. She pats Eadric on the head absently and looks for a place to take a seat.

"Thank you, Your Highness." Nicia replies, tearing her attention away from the antics of her oldest, offering Reese a smile, "I'll pass along your compliments to the Duke, it was his gift. I'm afraid I never have such good taste in clothes." She ponders, "But at least this won't show ink stains."

Violet has joined the Northern Banquet Table.

Khanne walks in looking, well, not super happy or in the party mood... even though she is dressed to impress in spring colors like a flower. However, once she finds where she is going, she takes a deep cleansing breath and releases it, tilting her head from one side to the other to crack her neck, then plasters on a smile. She looks around, lifting her hand to wave at people she knows before trying to get a feel of the atmosphere.

'Lady Grimhall." Alarissa turns away from old friends at the approach, offering her arm to Sanya. "There is a lovely tailor, His name is Vincenzo. Divine. We struck a deal. He would make me something in Aeterna to suit the pearl of Thrax and I would wear whatever he designed that would suit how he saw best fit to dress me. This is the result." Alarissa smiles. "I quite like it." She looks over SAnya. "And you look just as divine and your ring reminds me very much of one that I once had! How are you?:

"Hello, Lady Miranda," Sorrel says cheerfully, putting both hands under her belly. From behind, she looks pretty normal. From the front, she looks enormous. "I'm doing as well as can be expected at a party at or near full term, yes. My eighteen month old is pretty upset he doesn't get to party tonight, and I'm pretty relived he's got nannies." She smiles and waves at Reese as well.

Reigna spies Reese and gives the woman a big bright smile on her way towards the banquet table, "Princess Reese! Lovely to see you! Oooh, Princess Sorrel! Cousin, you look so lovely! That gown makes you glide as if floating on the sea, it is beautiful!" Reigna's eyes keep finding more and more people she recognizes and she sends waves to familiar faces before she finally sits at the table near to Alis, "Your highness you look incredible! Like a flower come to life!"

Brady lingers near the southern banquet table just long enough to take note of those there. Just like that, he's lost in the crowd until he sits down beside Norwood, flashing a gormless smile.

Brady has joined the several tables and benches.

Miranda smiles to Reese, offering a little dramatic 'catch' of that blown kiss and then helps it 'land' on her cheek. She pretends to swoon until her aide gets over-zealous about it. She waves him off and chuckles, turning her attention back to Sorrel, "Well you look lovely. Do you need to sit, perhaps? Or I can lend you my aide to escort you about if you wish."

Reese peaks over to Nicia. "I think it is the best dress here, although there are lots of pretty ones." She says and well Reese might be just a touch biased. She smiles over to Cristoph when it is revealed to be a gift.

"They would have been better had I had you or Jael alongside to race me to the old homestead! As it was, Rebellion very nearly grew bored with me, I think. I didn't let him rush headlong as he loves to do," Elsa responds towards Cristoph with a chuckle and shrug lifted. She tones the grin down to a warm smile, "Admittedly, it -is- good to be back in the Oathlands, if only for a short stay. I should bring the children around before they both reach their majority and run off to live their own lives." Harlex's comment receives a perfectly proper courtly curtsy towards the mercenary as she offers, "I was hoping for mere dropped jaws, but as always, Master Villente outdid himself with the gown." Spying Jael, Elsa lifts a hand towards her dear friend.

Elsa has joined the Southern Banquet Table.

Norwood holds a stiff upperlip when the nurse comes to take the young man away, though his expression falls after hinting that he MISSES the distraction of Cristoph's heir. Enough that Elsa has time to move behind someone else and so Norwood doesn't go blind from her dress. A deep sigh as Norwood bows to Nicia and Jael over there before turning towards Kael and Reigna. "Marquis, Marquessa, it's a pleasure."

Lisebet might be a bit late, she's certainly behind Thorley and Violet who she arrived with. But she's here, coming in and glancing around to see what is going on.

Khanne spots Reigna as she finds a seat near Alis. She makes a bee-line (BEE LINE) towards her and before she even says anything, simply wraps her arms around ehr friend, whispering to her, "I needed a hug, and to hug you." She holds on, gently squeezing, for a moment before letting go. "May I join you?"

Gianna inclines her head to Reese as well; a nod for Thorley, Violet, and Lisebet, and Norwood and Jael, too. The College's Nightingale pauses to accept a glass of cider, brows arching as she looks for a place to seat herself.

"I appreciate that, Your Highness." Nicia replies to Reese, once more offering her a smile before she glances at Reigna, nodding to her and Kael, "Keatons, always a pleasure." She nods to Norwood, offering him a smile, "Baron, you'll have to explain why he calls you pop some day."

Reese smiles over to Lisebet as she arrives. She then murmurs softly to Violet.

Elizabetta, a disapproving lady-in-waiting, Lily, an aloof lady-in-waiting, 2 Grayson House Guards, Clark, an exasperated guard arrive, following Sabella.

Isabelle, who is just so tired of everyone's nonsense, Sabella arrive, following Niklas.

Alis manages to get through that sip of wine without spraying it out or choking on it, though it does require a good clearing of her throat before she can proffer a warm smile upon Kael and Reigna once they sit down. "Good evening, indeed." A flush appearing at Reigna's compliment. "That's so kind of you, Marquessa. The credit goes to the tailor though, who took on my challenge with considerable skill I must say. Vincenzo - I belive Princess Alarissa just spoke of him too." She lifts her glass towards the former Valardin with a fond smile. And then finds herself wrapped in a Khanne hug, which is obviously returned. "Please, Khanne. Join us. Is everything alright?"

Thorley settles with Reese and Violet, waving Lisebet over to the northern table before ''combing'' his fingers through his hair.

When Gianna approaches him, Cristoph smiles brightly in the woman's direction. "Hello! Thank you for coming. I think you'll recognize some of these songs from your work with Lady Jael. I have to thank you for all of help in that." Elsa's talk brings a burst of laughter from him, "Well, you can't win them all. I'm sure someone here is scandalized. Yes, you should bring the children however. Perhaps this summer? It would be good to get all of them together in one place."

1 Lyonesse Trained Guards, 2 House Lyonesse Adept Guards, Maverick, the hawk arrive, following Demura.

Taking Alarissa's arm, Sanya nods at her words. "Vincenzo? From the Lyceum? Definitely worth the exchange, you truly stand out." She smiles, appraising the outfit once more. "And thank you. It's from the Velvet Box." She lifts her hand to study her ring. "I thought it suited the theme of the Isles well. I've been very well. And you? How are you finding this event?"

"Thank you, Cousin," Sorrel says to Reigna with a grin. "See," she notes to Miranda. "I'm safe. If anything happens with the baby, I'll just have the Marquessa help me with it."

Reigna gets up to her feet as Khanne arrives and holds her arms out to offer hugs to the shaman. Once there have been hugs, Reigna gets a guilty look on her face and she murmurs, "I am so sorry, Khanne. I was being wretched in my whites. I should not have done it and I tried to convince the Scholar to let me tear the page and I think, if he and I had not served together before he might very well have slapped me for suggesting it. Also there's the fact that Kael likely would have torn his arm off and well, no one wants that much blood in the Archives." Reigna rambles, this is known. Still, she is making an apology and looks up at her friend. "But I should not have vented the way that I did, so I am sorry."

Brady perks up when Alisa speaks, picking up something above the din ofthe crowd. From his seat, he proudly smoothes out his slacks and crosses his legs, looking quite pleased with himself now.

As the party-goers buzz around him in their finery, as rich as the honey mead which seems to bee everywhere he looks and--to his realizes--its in the /whisky too/. Harlex isn't bursting into hives or anything, but the sweetness is a bit much for him. He takes his time with his drink, when a few droplets pollinate the whiskers of his black beard he wipes his hand across his lips. Breathing through his teeth from the pleasured sting of the alcohol.

The benefit of sitting near Alis, of course, is the fact that Kael can keep an eye on Her Highness, even while taking in her reactions. His brows draw in toward one another as he regards her, and there is a quiet trace of her line of sight and when he catches sight of what that reaction was due to? The sheer gown of Elsa's? Why yes, he is rather choking himself. Alas, there is no wine in hand and so it is simply instead that he draws a hand to his mouth and coughs. Once. Nay, twice. All right, so he is turning somewhat to the side and taking a deep breath before giving some serious side eye toward Alis as though blaming her for that. Ignore the twitch of his lips. "Princess Alis, good eve," he says before shifting his attention toward Nicia and rising to bow. "Duchess Laurent, it is indeed always a pleasure. Thank you for hosting such an exquisite fete."

Khanne has joined the Southern Banquet Table.

3 Telmarine Armsmen have been dismissed.

"Deadly on my coin purse. But I have secured a statue to be put up for auction and then a voucher for a destrier. A Blanchard destrier and now a Launrent one to fill out Thrax's stables. Oh, and a dress. Another divine aeterna dress but I've the perfect jewelry for it to go with." She looks at the ring again. "Mine was just an octopus that graced the length of a finger, looking like it might escape to the back of my palm. It's head was a large irregular pearl. But that, that wears you very well dear Lady." She looks about the room. "Is there anyone here that you haven't met that you might wish to? That I can introduce you?"

Ysbail is not dressed for a party, she would have, but she has the look of someone less than thrilled with the world. She shoes off another messenger scowling at the poor man, as though daring him to deliver one more missive. Free at last, or seemingly so, she steps away to look about the crowd for familiar faces.

Ysbail has joined the Banquet Table.

Kael, a little red still, is giving a little chin-up greeting toward Khanne as well.

Norwood shakes his head briefly then calls out across the area to Nicia, "I believe it is short for 'Papa,' which is common for a grandfather-like looking one." Norwood is IGNORING any implication that it has something to do with FIZZKEY. WHICH HE NEVER GAVE THE KID.

Gianna has joined the a whimsical wooden pony.

Following Sorrel's gaze to Reigna, Miranda nods. "Yes you are. I met her at the hospital the other day while I was there. Some sort of nasty business went on, too... " She pauses, frowning, "I think." She shrugs, "I was out of it, so I'm not sure everything I saw was actually happening." She shrugs, "Well, your highness, I shall leave you to your stroll. You look lovely, of course."

Willow has joined the Banquet Table.

A dance known as the "Bee Quadrille" is performed with more traditional music played. When it concludes, the trio picks up again. A dramatic, adventuresome song begins. It tells of a young man set adrift, traveled to Arx and discovering himself. His intervention on behalf of an adventuresome princess and his work as a squire for Lord Commander Nelson Wyrmguard. But the tune abruptly changes, goes dark and ends with more loss at the betrayal of a peace summit. Lord Commander Nelson Wyrmguard is lost, as is the King of the Compact, Alar Grayson.

Veronica Keaton arrives linked arm in arm with Demura Lyonesse, and the two women take a few moments to leave their overgarments with the valets at the door. Veronica shrugs out of an eminently practical woodland cloak with a rabbit-fur stole, handing both off to be stored. Her grey dress is a simple sheathe cut, hanging to just above her ankles. It clings closely to her lean frame. The neckline hugs the flat planes of her collarbone without exposing any decolletage but the sleeves are removed, showcasing athletic arms and a few hard-won scars upon them. The only decoration she wears is a thin leather baldric slung low on her hips with a sheathed dagger attached to it.

"I hate these shoes," she tells Demura, through thin-pressed lips that barely move. "I keep feeling like I'm going to walk right out of them." She glances down at the low-heeled leather sandals as if to ensure she is in fact still wearing them.

Reigna peers over to her husband seeing him so red in the face and her brows lift as she looks around, trying to find the source of such consternation. She spies Nicia first and beams to her Duchess, "This party is magnificent and you look so beautiful, Duchess Nicia! Well done!" And looking past Nicia, she finally spies Elsa and her eyes widen, jaw dropping, "By the gods she's *naked*!" This last bit comes out at a squeak and she looks back to Kael, brows lifted.

Alis glances between Reigna and Khanne several times now, reaching for the wine bottle to refill her glass without looking away from either of them. "Anyone else need some? I know I do." To get through a party? You bet. "Marquis Kael? Yes, you definitely need something to drink." She shoves a glass his way and pours. "Okay, Reigna does too. Duchess Nicia? Shall I pour for you too?

Lisebet has joined the Northern Banquet Table.

"Never do get tired of that Lyceum fashion sense," Harlex comments at Reigna's outburst. As Khanne settles at the southern banquet table, the mercenary offers a slight nod and then to Alis's offer he studies the bottle. "I'll try some of that."

Ysbail has left the Banquet Table.

Upon spotting Violet and Thorley, Lisebet heads over tha way. She thinks it's a good thing to do, pretend she was here on time. She waves, smiles, or nods as she spies folks she recognizes, as appropriate.

"Everything is as it will be," Khanne assures Alis with a smile after the hug. "Just a stressful day... How are you?" She turns to hug Reigna tightly then places her hands on the woman's shoulders. "Nonsense. You've no need to apologize. I need to know these things, and even though he is not in our house, I still feel that -I- need to apologize to you..." She pecks Reigna's cheek before releasing her and moves to take a seat. "Though, if there is to be bloodshed anywhere... I could offer suggestions...." There is a brief tensing of her jaw before the smile returns. "Besides, if it makes you feel better, I received missives from others with similar... well, similarities. We'll leave it at that. But! This is a good evening, one to put such stresses behind us." Seeing Kael's chin-greeting, she smiles at the Count and winks at him. "Oh, drinks? I would love one!" Khanne says to Alis then smiles in greeting to Harlex.

While Demura is still wearing some pieces of metal around her dress, it's clear this one isn't designed for jousting, rather, it's one of the rare occasions where the Marquessa allows herself to wear something more party-like. Still opting for a set that displays the colours of her House and the proud Lion of the Lyonesse.

"Once you get used to the boots, there's nothing else more comfortable." Demura tells Veronica, looking up for the taller woman before scanning the room around for Cristoph. Tugging her companion towards the host, she curtsies briefly before the man, "Hope we're not too late, my lord. The tourney was a lovely event, I'm sure tonight will be even lively."

Niklas enters with Sabella on his arm and their retinue in tow. After looking around the hall for a moment he leads his wife over for a pass by the horse where he offers a, "Nightingale. So good to see you. Opening night in a week. I do hope you're ready to be nice and complimentary of our performers so they're in good spirits the day of." He pats Sabella's hand, then looks over to send waves toward the Thrax princesses in attendance, then to Demura. "We really should find time to talk, Marquessa."

Jael waves and curtsies hither and thither, lifting a hand to her open mouth in mock-horror at Elsa's choice of attire. But her attention is pulled away by a servant's beckoning and she heads in that direction with a wary look.

Nicia shakes her head to Alis, lifting her glass of whiskey. Evidently she's good in regards to the drink situation.

"Oh, is that what he's getting at?" Cristoph comments to Norwood, sounding like he finally understands. Over to his wife, "That makes a lot of sense when you think about it!" When it comes time to move again, he heads to another large banquet table to join the guests there. As he passes Alarissa, Khanne and Alis and some others he makes sure to stop. "Hello, I hope everyone is enjoying themselves so far?" His attention is quickly drawn by the Lyonesse woman. "Marquessa Demura! Lady Keaton. Thank you for coming. Your brother really crashes his way through that tournament yesterday. I suppose he hasn't forgotten how to be an Oathlands knight yet."

"A statue." Sanya smiles at this. "What will it be depicting?" She glances back at the ring. "I would like to see that one day, although I imagine you have many options in the jewelry department." Looking around the room, she looks thoughtful. "I noticed you were speaking to Princess Alis earlier. I've not had the opportunity to formally meet her."

Willow settles at the banquet table and starts to say something before Ysbail's departure. At that point she instead winds up staring off after a wandering cat.

Brady chats quietly at his seat, causing distinctly very little trouble. Openly eyeing the fashionable and drinking hard cider, his gaze roams the crowd.

Alis is a happy wine pouring princess, yes she is. Harlex is given a polite nod as she pours him a glass and sends it his way. "You and Reinga are both making be glad I did not stop by the archives to read anything between the bank and home today." she decides, giving both Khanne and the Marquessa a signifigant look. "I'm as fine as can be, all things considered." she leans over to murmur quietly to several, but also starts pouring for Khanne afterwards. "Excellent wine."

Sabella beams bright smiles at everyone, standing on her tiptoes to wave to Lady Jael, "Lady Jael! I am already practicing singing your praises!" Then she laughs at Niklas' comment to Gianna, "The Nightengale just wants us to do our best and we all know that."

Turning a laughing smile towards Reigna, Elsa dips into a brief curtsy and demurs, "Not quite, Marquessa. But Master Vincenzo -is- quite daring in his designs when given free reign to do as he pleases. And I enjoy letting him do just that. He comes up with some fantastical ideas and always manages to bring them to life! He managed this gown and these boots in a mere three days' time!" She glances to Alis and dips a deeper curtsy, "Your Highness. If you are sharing the libations, I could use a drink myself. Bolster the spirits, so to speak." Harlex's comment gets him a brief grin, "I have another creation of his that wasn't very suitable for a 'spring' themed gala, so there's still another to be debuted."

Jael seems happy to ignore her summons long enough to aim a wave at Sabella and call back to her, "Princess Sabella! I haven't forgotten about meeting up with you, I promise. And my thanks...hopefully I'll race better than I joust."

Gianna's lips curve up slightly at the corners as Niklas greets her; she inclines her head to him, and to Sabella as well. "I'll try to be nice. Tears don't help anyone sing better, after all. Are you excited? I am. Princess Sabella, you look lovely, of course. And you're always a dependable performer."

Miranda walks along the ballroom, pausing briefly and murmuring to her aide. He nods and he gently escorts her over to one of the banquet tables, helping her sit and fetching her a glass of wine. Such a fussy aide!

Miranda has joined the Northern Banquet Table.

For a time, a soft couples dance plays out on the dance floor. In what's becoming a predictable routine, when that ends, another begins. The young man, Jonathan Baseborn, returns to the Oathlands to chase down a prophecy. He doesn't return in time to be of any help, many lives are lost and there's tremendous bloodshed.

Cristoph has left the Southern Banquet Table.

A little late (is there a late to such things? There are those who come too early and those who stay too late, surely) and not far behind the Grayson power couple of Niklas and Sabella, Helena enters, the Redrain princess glancing around a little curiously, taking in the decor of the Laurent Manse. She hasn't been inside, only outside on the grounds. Her blue-eyed gaze dances about, taking in those she's familiar with and those she isn't too sure of. "Baron Norwood," she greets -- a face she recognizes. "This looks just lovely, the picture of spring," she says warmly.

Harlex accepts the wine glass and studies its contents. It doesn't look like whisky, but when in--Artshall do what the Artshallian's do. That's definitely a saying. Probably. The swordsman gives a grateful nod to Alis. He lifts the drink toward Elsa in salutation. "Princess Berenice would have been mighty jealous. A high compliment, probably." He takes a sip--a big sip--and then sets the glass aside for a moment. He listens to the next song and he exhales a breath through his nose. "These melodies are hard on the heart."

Veronica joins Demura at the touch to her arm, and curtsies politely when Demura does. Tall as she is, the polite genuflection doesn't change her stature overmuch. "The tournament was quite the spectacle," Veronica assures Cristoph in her evenly modulated voice. "And the Oathland takes pride in our champions. Many youth go to the city, but you can never take the youth out of the wilds," she tells him, in the manner of someone quoting a bedrock axiom.

She tilts an ear to the musicians. "The musical selection is quite stirring, too," she tells Cristoph. It's hard to tell if she's being insincere or just expressing bland-faced admiration for the martial (if somewhat somber) accompaniment.

Miranda sits, smoothing her dress and lightly puts a hand to her forehead and then to her temples, rubbing gently. The glass of wine is accepted and sipped, then she waves off the poor aide, freeing him to... whatever he likes. Dancing perhaps? She speaks softly to those at ther table after a moment, hand going to her lap.

"But of course, Lady Elsa." Like a good Oathlands Princess, Alis looks up.. very up, in her case since she's kinda short... and smiles. She is not looking down at any part of that sheer dress, nuh uh. The servers keep the bottles coming, and she just keeps pouring. A glass held up for Lady Shephard politely. She is sure to wiggle her fingers politely at Cristoph. Though she does add. "Do I see people /wearing armor/ here, Duke Laurent?" Grrhss!

When his wife is eyeing him with that particular look, Kael simply lifts a hand up, palm-forward toward her. It is a light thing, that, and when Alis is offering him that drink he looks about to refute when the glass is poured. So he laughs, instead. "Thank you," he murmurs. With Elsa's approach, there's a vague flick of a glance toward her face before he nods by way of polite greeting and turns promptly when Marquessa Lyonnesse and Lady Keaton are announced. He lifts his wine glass upward, searching the ground and certainly seeking to greet, if not hail them.

Erin, Crimson Blades Private have been dismissed.

2 Crimson Blades Lieutenant have been dismissed.

Violet has left the Northern Banquet Table.

Helena has joined the several tables and benches.

"It's the Oathlands, there's going to be /some/ armor!" Cristoph calls cheerfully to Alis before adding, "Your dress is absolutely lovely!" In a more conversational tone he dips his head to Veronica, "Thank you, Lady Keaton. It's a tale very important to me and my family. I'm happy to share it with the others here, even if it is a bit... somber." Thankfully the musicians sprinkle in less depressing songs now and again.

"There is a lot to be considered, when thinking if we are fine... we are as fine as can be in certain circumstances, right?" She nods, polishing her copepr brooch with a buff of her wrist upon it, thoughtfully. Taking up the wine for a sip, a small sip... she nods. "Very good wine, for wine," she says, grinning before turning to quieter talk at the table.

"It will take more than a lifetime to make Rymarr forget how to be an Oathlander." Demura states to Cristoph, even flashing the Duke a brief smile, "I'm quite happy for his victory, though it probably means I should practise more if I hope to go to a final with him in the future."

Another voice calls for her and she is quick to identify the man as she turn to face Niklas, "Oh, Your Highness!" She prompts another curtsy, bowing a little deeper, "I do hope we can talk soon, especially as I've been studying those art aspects so much more."

Then her attention it's shifted back to Veronica, "We should find a place to sit." She suggests, eyes turning to the dance, "I guess I've heard a bit about his story, one thing I like about these performances is that they tend to be educational."

"The I come round to giving away what's in it, I'll send word to you first so may get your pick if it pleases. Regardless, you look very well yourself tonight." A glance to Alis - a side glance to Elsa to smile at that dress - and she's steering the Grimhall Lady that way. "Once a sister by marriage, still a sister by heart. Tactical sized and she looks very lovely in aeterna. She needs to wear it more often. But come, we shall meet her and those around her." Alarissa starts to make her way there.

Reigna blinks owlishly at Lady Elsa and nods, though her cheeks are quite pink. Turning her focus to Ali's, she talked the wine with a murmured thanks, "Oh it was only hypothetical blood. Still." She winks happily before leaning into another hug to Khanne before settling into Kael's side. She hears her cousin's voice and wanted to Sorrel. Reigna takes a small sip of her wine, nodding, "It is lovely."

:seems concerned as she looks over to Miranda. "You have been injured?" She asks of the Lady.

Thorley has left the Northern Banquet Table.

Jael is overheard praising Laurent.

Lisebet is overheard praising Laurent: Hurrah for a Fete!

For a time, a soft couples dance plays out on the dance floor. In what's becoming a predictable routine, when that ends, another begins. The young man, Jonathan Baseborn, returns to the Oathlands to chase down a prophecy. He doesn't return in time to be of any help, many lives are lost and there's tremendous bloodshed.

Alis narrows her eyes over the rim of her glass, and definitely mutters something under her breath about armor being lovely too. "Alarissa, it's nice to see you again." The greeting is given as soon as she spots the woman coming towards them. She keeps one arm hooked with Khanne's, as she feels the woman just needs that extra support today. Her smile is all warmth now, of course.

Cristoph has joined the Northern Banquet Table.

"Oh, I am certainly quite excited. This really is the show that will define my future in the art. Though to be fair, they all are." Niklas gives Gianna a grin, squeezes Sabella's hand and nods to Demura. "Absolutely. I will send a messenger. I'm certain Sabella and myself can make the time soon to come by. That work is something we've both been interested in since we saw it a couple of years back."

Reese is overheard praising Cristoph: Great party!

Reese is overheard praising Nicia: Great Party and beautiful dress!

Veronica's always got an eye on the crowd, even while talking with Cristoph. Habitual awareness is a hard thing to kick. She's tuned into the sound of Demura's voice and glances at her companion when the other woman speaks, looking at Demura's face. "Yes, of course," she agrees, and turns to Cristoph. "With m'Lord's permission," she murmurs, and offers another perfunctory curtsey. Not a formal thing, but at least satisfying the requirements of polite etiquette. Veronica does look like she'd be more at home eating roast game over an open fire, even though her hair's worn down and in tumbling golden waves instead of her usual ponytail.

"My family seems to have commandeered a table, shall we say hello?" she suggests to Demura. She gently lays fingers on Demura's forearm and uplifts her chin toward the rest of the Keaton clan.

Khanne is overheard praising Laurent.

"/Indeed/. I'll have to find him for riding lessons sometime if I ever brush up on my skills, as Baron Norwood would like me to. If you'll excuse me?" He steps back and moves towards one of the tables, taking a seat there.

Brady rises quickly from his spot and bows deeply to Helena, "Princess Helena... Redrain? You look incredible in that dress. It's an honor and a pleasure to make yout acquaintance." All of this spills out of the young man's mouth with ease, though the keen might spot his nervousness.

"I blame living in Graypeak all these years. Its right on the border to the Lyceum, I've been corrupted by their influence," Elsa remarks to Harlex offhandedly and not at all seriously. She thanks Alis for the drink and lifts the glass towards those at the table before taking a sip. Looking back to Reigna, Elsa offers a broad smile, "I've been meaning to catch up with you. I understand your family breeds the most amazing hunting hounds. The Shepherds are known for a herding and guarding breed themselves. We should sit down sometime, I would -love- to talk with you about training tips and tricks sometime. And I promise I will be fully and completely clothed. This was a... special sort of homecoming for me. I suppose I felt the need to tweak my father's nose, as word -will- get back to him." Alarissa's arrival has her dipping once more into the courtly curtsy, "Your Highness, I do love your dress. Its utterly lovely."

"That very thoughtful of you." Sanya seems sincerly grateful. "I look forward to it." Her bright smile falters when Alarissa brings up her former marriage. "Oh, of course, I am so sorry about that." She comments softly, before offering offering a bittersweet smile. "It's lovely that you and the princess remain so close to this day."

Willow is overheard praising Laurent: Beautiful festival.

"It ain't so bad, that influence." Harlex says to Elsa with evident experience. He regains his height after he, very easily and practiced (not at all a problem), finishes his wine. He rests his hands on the wide front of his swordbelt, returning to a survey of the room as he studies those around.

Norwood shouts from nearby, ""The sooner you give in the better!" Norwood towards Cristoph."

Helena is overheard praising Laurent: Lovely spring fete!

Brady is overheard praising Laurent: Super fancy, classy, and very fun. Yet oocly accessible.

Alis is overheard praising Laurent: The fete of the season, surely! It even included a scandalous dress!

"We'd be honoured to receive you both at the Lyonesse Chateau," Demura says to Niklas, eyes moving back from the dance to both him and Sabella, "Just drop me a message and we'll make the preparations." Then it's Veronica's turn to tug her around and the Marquessa just allows herself to be directed towards the Keaton table, a hand waving around to them as she approaches.

The haunting notes continue, a journey to a forbidden home. An exile, traveling across lands he has been cast out from. He discover his ancestral lands have been given over to a terrible evil, those sworn to protect are now cutting down the innocent. Those who resist are cut down. Every tale has its highs and lows and suddenly, the tune changes. One to hope and courage as it speaks of the Laurents. A commoner house that with the help of young Jonathan Baseborn, organizes a coup to overthrow the oppressors of Artshall.

Harlex is overheard praising Laurent: Always generating buzz, those Laurents.

Willow has left the Banquet Table.

"Oh no, no, do not be sorry. He perished near eight years ago. I miss him, but life continues. We find happiness where we can." But they're there and everyone present in the area gets a dip of her head. "The Lady Sanya Grimhall was of a desire to meet Princess Alis, and who was I to not introduce her to my most tactical sized and most radiant sister-in-law." A gesture with an upraised palm to the individual in question before she goes through and lists the names - indicating which person the name belongs to - in the group around them. Elsa's compliment gains a wide smile. 'It would seem, we both have a delightful taste in the same tailor. I have a dress you can see through as well, but I've only worn it for the Velenosan dinners. It makes the ArchDuchess smile."

"I look forward to it!" Sabella agrees with Niklas, giving Demura a smile that only falters a little at Gianna's use of 'dependable.' She looks around at others that are there to spot more people she knows, "This music is lovely, did you have a hand in composing it?" she asks Gianna.

Kael is overheard praising Laurent: Spectacular Spring Event!

Reigna has left the Southern Banquet Table.

4 Novice Keaton Huntsmen have been dismissed.

Gigi, an apprentice physician's assistant have been dismissed.

Marie, chef of Keaton Hall have been dismissed.

Willow stands and brushes her skirts off before wandering closer to the musician, rapt through till the tune changes before she starts wandering unhurriedly between the tables, pausing briefly at one point near Elsa.

Alis stands from her chair briefly enough to incline her head politely and clasp Sanya's hand if allowed, before sitting back down in a swish of organza and seasilk. "It's lovely to meet you then, Lady Sanya. I hope you're enjoying the Laurent hospitality. They really do put together such wonderful social events." Small in size, big in personality.

"Hopefully, we'll all be famous from it," Gianna tells Niklas. She doesn't seem to notice Sabella's' smile falter, but that might require more empathy than Gianna is capable of, to be honest. She shakes her head. "I didn't, I'm afraid, though I've had a bit of a hand in spreading them. The tale of Jonathan Baseborn is quite interesting."

Willow is overheard praising Elsa: That entrance was everything. Absolutely lovely.

Reigna is overheard praising Laurent: Outstanding lieges, amazing parties!

Reigna is overheard praising Cristoph: Stunning event BEEnevolent Overlord!

A curse, a curse. The musicians tell of a terrible curse. A duchy is liberated in one night, but a man is labeled... /kinslayer/ for the death of his estranged father. But are curses /real/? Some might argue that's nonsense. A ripple of discussion over the subject travels among party goers as jaunty music is picked up. The guests return to the floor to engage in an intricate partner dance.

Lisebet smoothes her skirts and chats lightly with those at her table. She does glance up and notes quite a few people she recognizes.

Reigna has joined the Southern Banquet Table.

Amari is here and there, dancing and then talking to this person or that person, never staying put long, all bright smiles and laughter. Her only constant companion is Barf, who pads along after her, leaving her side only to check people and places for food that's either loosely held or fallen to the floor. The pair circulate in that manner until both have had too much mead and probably need to go sleep it off.

2 Novice Keaton Huntsmen, River, a juvenile Oakhaven bloodhound, Barf, the Bog Dog leave, following Amari.

"It would seem so, Your Highness! And Princess Alis, as well! He's so very versatile, he made my everyday clothes as well. Much more 'proper' and befitting day to day activities. I can't say that I've been hosted by the Archduchess of the Lyceum, but I do have a number of friends that married into the Lyceum, so I spend my fair share fo time there. I've learned to be comfortable and confident whether wearing translucent seasilk or heavy sackcloth. You never quite know what the day will bring!" Elsa lifts her glass to Harlex with a smile, "You're absolutely right, Captain."

"Lady Keaton!" This time it's to Amari as Cristoph spots her and dog. "How is Barf feeling back in the Oathlands?" He asks conversationally as he makes his way through the crowds to the woman.

Cristoph has left the Northern Banquet Table.

Cristoph has joined the Southern Banquet Table.

Harlex cants his head a bit, half listening to the table. Although it seems the song has his notice if briefly toward something. When it fades and when Elsa addresses him, he smirks slightly and decides to relocate toward the Lady Shepherd. "All manner of powers in this world. Confidence in appearance is right up there with strength of arms, I've come to know."

Niklas gives his wife a lopsided smile and nods to Gianna. "I had the opportunity to help out, but unfortunately I ran out of time. Too much working for myself, though the whole thing with the roads was a to-do." Niklas gives a long sigh, then turns to look over the crowd. "Quite a turn out, though. I hope the Laurents manage to succeed at their aim. I always thought Artshall seemed like an ideal place for, well, arts."

Sorrel has joined the Southern Banquet Table.

Sanya dips her head at those in her vicinity, a gracious smile on her lips, as Alarissa introduces her. As Alis rises, she extends her arm to greet her. "It's a pleasure to officially meet you, your highness. I am certainly enjoying it, the decorations are beautiful, the music is lovely - the bard's and the song choices." She grins as the music becomes more upbeat. "That's a wonderful tiara." She comments, studying the irdescite ornament.

Veronica heads towards Keaton table with her arm around Demura's. It's hard to tell who's leading and who's following. The two women move in effortless balance and synchronization, even with Veronica in her unfamiliar shoes. A rare, subtle smile is on her face though. Something only her cousins would readily identify. "Kael," she says, greeting him with a hint of fondness in her cool voice. "I'm glad everyone's here. You remember Demura Lyonesse, of course," she says, ever the soul of mandatory propriety. "Are these chairs free?" she asks, fingers resting on the back of one of two unclaimed seats.

Brady has left the several tables and benches.

A victory celebrated and lost, but Jonathan and his allies are able to escape with their lives when Artshall falls /again/. The music beings played is crafting a stirring feeling of tension and worry. Will their heros be successful? Will there be a win?

Enter now Queen Alarice, sweeping into the story with all the dramatic entrance one would expect. Jonathan Baseborn rallies the western front alongside the Compact's Queen. There's tremendous loss in a furious battle, but they come out victorious. The tide is turned in the Oathlands, a path to Sanctum is finally cleared.

Our hero is knighted, he is known as Sir Jonathan Baseborn and he wields a blade gifted by the Queen herself, Queensguard. People turn to look at Baron Norwood rather expectantly.

From her seat with the Baron Norwood and Brady, Helena glances up at the lyrics about curses, a small frown marring her expression, before looking up and smiling to Brady as he rises, a nod for the departing Grayhope, before she turns to murmur something to Norwood, a smile returning to her face.

Alis lifts a glass towards Lady Elsa in toast. "More power to you, Lady Elsa. To be so confident. Would that I had half the amount you do." is said fervently, with another eye given that dress. As for her tiara, she smiles with a faint bit of wry in it at that. "Thank you Lady Sanya. I had it made in honor of the family. Guildmistress Joscelin is the one who designed it. I hope it will eventually be an heirloom piece to be passed down."

If people want Norwood's attention they need to say his name and not that of his sword. Because Norwood is TALKING TO PEOPLE.

Norwood is overheard praising Laurent: Loyal to the Queen!

Brady turns, smoothes out his clothing, and bows deeply to Helena, one hand extended, "May I have the honor of a dance, Your Highness?" When people look to Norwood, right near him, Brady straightens, looking stricken, as if he's committed the faux pas of the century.

"Baron Clement! Show us the sword!" Some guy shouts who doesn't care about curses but wants to see the cool sword.

Norwood blinks as his name is called out and he turns to see all the people yelling at him. "Hum." There's a glance at Cristoph to make sure it's okay. (Yes, of course it's okay,) before bowing to Helena, "Pardon," before standing and drawing Queensguard.

"Queen Alarice was my most favorite part I've gotten to play so far," Sabella says with a wistful sigh, then quickly follows that up with, "Only because I haven't been on stage for your play, my love! And I hadn't heard of the tale before now! It does seem incredible!"

Kael finishes up saying something or other to the grouping that happens to be settled near him, just in time to catch the approach of Veronica and Demura. He is rising from his seat so that he can incline his head, just so, to the duo. "Marquessa Lyonnesse, well met," he rumbles first and foremost toward Demura, though his focus is shifting appropriately thereafter toward Veronica and he is just -- well, he regards her. He studies her features, he tilts her head, and there is a surveying look back and forth between the two. "Veronica," he says, just so, with something quiet and fond in his tone. He reaches out across the table and clasps her upper arm, and to be fair, it's a bit bold of a motion. Nothing gentle as he usually might, but rather a bold, playful thing. "You both look very nice," he says, including Demura in this, with a sweep of his gaze toward the Marquessa. When he turns back toward Veronica, a single brow lifts. "Together." It's an addition to his former words, simple, plain. To Sorrel's greeting, he offers a smile toward the young woman. "Good evening," he says to her. "Congratulations are soon in order, yes?"

Helena looks surprised when Brady asks her to dance and she laughs a little, then nods to Norwood as he rises. "Certainly," she tells the older gentleman, before putting her hand in that of Brady's proffered one, and adding, "And certainly." She rises too, a small, ceremonial curtsy given to the commoner, the sort given before a dance. "I'll take back what I said to the Baron of your ill taste, because there are many in the room who will dance far prettier than I can, but thank you for the invitation," she says with a laugh.

Danvir comes in looking around he walks with a rolling gait more accumstomed to the deck of ship than solid ground. As he steps into the room he looks around at the gathering

The musicians must be in the home stretch now, because they don't switch to a more popular song. Sir Jonathan Baseborn engages in another campaign before the war's end, rooting out another great force of evil and bringing lasting peace for the Eastern Oathlands when he defeats Duke Grimthog Two-Head (two heads?? The party goers scoff, some people call for Norwood to swing his sword around) in battle.

Queen Alarice grants him a Peerage and he is made the Duke of Artshall, taking on the name of his adoptive father and becoming the first Laurent duke in history. It's a bittersweet moment, with so many of his people lost, both blood and those made by ties of friendship.

Niklas gives a gasp and holds his hand to his chest when his TRAITOR of a wife BETRAYS him in favor of some dead old lady with a nice hat. "You've done /rehearsals/, Sabella!" He turns and holds his chin up with a hmph. Someone is getting the couch tonight! He pauses to watch the show, nodding along at various story beats, expression all 'oh, that's not bad, but here's what I would have done'.

Demura stands besides Veronica, momentarily enthralled by the story as she watches it come to a conclusion, "Hey, isn't that Baron Norwood's sword?" She questions, being confirmed by the man himself as sword is unsheathed. Kael receives a small bow of her head, "Marquis Kael, it's always good to meet you." She greets, turning to look for Veronica as the head of the Keaton comments on them, "I guess we match well." The Marquessa shrugs, pulling a chair for herself and waving at Alis as she catches sight of the Princess sitting by the same table.

Miranda sips her wine at her table, speaking softly with those at her table. Her guards hover unobtrusively out of the way. Her aide lingers closer, but is in another seat, watching the goings on, but his eyes keep flickering to Miranda. For her part, she lightly rubs at her head and eyes a moment. Her head lifts to glance about at those present, noting Norwood with his sword out.

"I have no doubt that it will grace the heads of many more Valardins." Alarissa looks to Sanya. "I shall leave you here, in their gentle hands, as there's something I need to see to, but I am confidant that they will make you feel very much at home." Alarissa smiles. "Pardon me."

Alis waves cheerfully at Demura, and then to Alarissa as she seems she's going to take her leave. "I'll see you soon, I hope."

Pharamond decides to come play and help celebrate with House Laurent on behalf of House Ashford. And so he enters the main hall belatedly, sadly, the event well under way but he looks about with a smile, eager for celebration and revelry and he looks to see where best to begin, though knowing him, it will usually start with a drink.

Brady releases a sigh of relief, walking with Helena out onto the middle of the dance floor. One might never see such a pleased commoner again. He finds a rhythm to the music, and, much more relaxed and in his element, dances with precision at mimicing those couples around him, adding small flourishes of his hips here and there. He keeps beaming that wide smile at the shorter Helena.

Norwood glances about - everyone get a look at the sword? Good. Now he can slide it back into its sheathe and then sit back down again after waving Brady and Helena off to do what young people do. Ahhh the quiet of his corner where he can keep an eye on the Laurents as well as keep to himself.

Zane, a tall and silent servant arrives, following Venturo.

Veronica dips her head at Kael, her smile widening ruefully for a flickering moment. "Demura looks good. I make an acceptable accessory," she says, correcting him with a mild sort of meticulousness. She settles into her own seat at the same time Demura takes hers. She follows Demura's gaze and question, before nodding at her companion.

"That is, yes," she confirms. "Queensguard. It's allegedly cursed, but as far as I can tell the only curse is that it's very well made. ...maybe a bit point-heavy," she says, brow furrowing. A hand slips into Demura's lap and seeks out the other woman's fingers, curling around her hand unthinkingly.

"Kael, I didn't realize how much theater there would be tonight," she tells her cousin. "I feel uncultured. Are all of these new stories or old ones?"

Danvir moves off the to the sides of the tables he pulls a flask from his pocket and takes a sip replacing it as he watches those mingeling.

Lisebet is seated at a table with a few friends, chatting idly. She's watching the comings and goings, relaxed and enjoying herself.

Willow watches the dancing, a shadow from the sidelines really, not having spoken to anyone all day, aside from a brief murmur, content to act the witness to the event rather than the outgoing social force more common amongst most of the other guests.

"I'll see you later. I hope you enjoy the night." Sanya smiles at Alarissa as she leaves the group. Turning to Alis, she nods. "I am certain it will be treasured for many years to come."

Zane, a tall and silent servant leaves, following Venturo.

Kael flashes a grin toward Sorrel and inclines his head humbly in response. His focus is soon enough on Demura and Veronica thereafter, however, glancing back and forth between the pair before nodding his head once more. This is a different sort of nod, a nod that happens to deal more with a confirmation to self rather than anything else. "An old story, Veronica. A very old one, in fact. I hope that in the coming months perhaps more details are found. Always interesting to see what threads might have been lost with time."

Sabella looks properly chastized and gives Danvir's flask a momentary longing look.

Demura has joined the Southern Banquet Table.

Maxene, the steadfast ladies maid, Pellinor, 4 Thrax Guards, Honey Snuggle, a Velenosian Angora cat, Elegance, a Velenosian Greyhound leave, following Alarissa.

Danvir winks at Sabella when he sees her looks and holds the flask up and motions to her with a raised eyebrow

Sabella has joined the a whimsical wooden pony.

Niklas has joined the a whimsical wooden pony.

Miranda notes another familiar face and waves towards Pharamond. She sips her wine, enjoying the music and the people-watching at this time.

"Thank you, Lady Sanya. I sincerely hope so. Please, feel free to join us." Alis gestures at some of the empty spaces available.

Sanya has joined the Southern Banquet Table.

Veronica has joined the Southern Banquet Table.

Norwood has left the several tables and benches.

The musicians trail off into something soft and quiet, finishing up the tale of a man who fought hard everyday in his life. For the betterment of others, selflessly putting himself in harms way time and again. A /hard/ life. One that doesn't see much relief even after the war as he's unable to find any remaining kin, despite searching endlessly. And in the end? A seer of Jayus talks of a curse, again. Some of the guests murmur in confusion, as this is not often the kind of songs played at the spring fete! Why did Duke Laurent commission all this talk of curses? Ah well, they liked the winning battles parts and the enjoy the mead.

As the songs about Duke Jonathan Laurent wind down, Cristoph excuses himself from the table he was seated at. He approaches the platform in the middle of the room and clears his throat and taps on a glass with a spoon. The ringing sound carries across the room. "I would like to thank everyone for coming to my home, to dance and celebrate with us. I would also like to thank all of you who listened to the tale of Duke Jonathan Laurent, it's a story close to my heart. We wouldn't have any of those songs tonight however without the work of my sister Lady Jael Laurent with the coordination of Whisper Gianna of the Bard's College. To them, I issue my endless thanks and praise." He holds up his glass in a cheer to the pair.

Cristoph drops a statue of Duke Jonathan Laurent.

Kedehern arrives to the banquet late, bu there non the less! His eyes scanning the crowd of guests, he eventually heads towards one of of the several tables and benches to take a seat.

Gianna rises from her seat with a few murmured words to Nicia, fluffing some of the silk petals of her somewhat ridiculous skirt. "I can see Madialaena trying to get my attention, so I'm afraid I'm leaving. Do enjoy the rest of the party... oh." Her name has been mentioned. Gianna straightens and raises her hand to give a regal little wave.

True to her word, Helena is not at all the best dancer on the dance floor, though she is graceful enough; she moves with an ease of manner that isn't entirely embarrassing, but she lacks the talent and gifts of a dancer who is born to the art. She listens to something that the Grayhope young man says and laughs a little, shaking her head, before standing on her toes to say something back. As she looks around, she nods to those she knows who have arrived, Danvir and Pharamond, small smiles for each. When the song comes to an end, she steps back to give Cristoph her attention, adding a quick "hear hear!"

Alis is overheard praising Jael.

Alis is overheard praising Gianna.

Miranda holds up her glass in cheers!

Willow is overheard praising Jael.

Willow is overheard praising Gianna.

Sanya is overheard praising Cristoph: A wonderful host of a memorable party.

"If anyone should have a say about curses, that'd be the Lyonesse." Demura makes herself properly accomodated at her seat, interlacing her fingers around Veronica's and holding the other woman's hand tightly for a moment, "But this isn't something to be feared. Curses can be broken and most of them are just superstition anyway, a valiant swordsman will make their own luck." When Cristoph moves to the center, she can be seen clapping in appreciation, keeping herself with moderate and polite manners.

Danvir smiles at Helena when she catches his eye and uncaps his flask taking another sip. He continues to lean on the wall and watch as some dance and other talk taking it all in.

Demura is overheard praising Gianna.

Demura is overheard praising Jael.

Harlex looks half distracted but as it turns out, the story of the curse managed to capture his attention for the length of it's telling. He raises his glass with the others to salute the host. Noting Demura, however, the swordsman eyes her briefly and after a nod he says, "Marquessa, I couldn't agree more. You know, we ought to fight sometime soon."

Brady bows deeply to Helena after the dance, merely winking in response to something said. As he turns to head towards the drinks table, one might spot him pumping a fist, or the little skip in his step on the way. He slides up to the table, draining a hard apple cider and taking another, offering cheers to a passing guard.

Pharamond grabs his drink and makes his way over to the area with Miranda, Lisebet, and Princess Reese. They are friendly, familiar faces and so he listens to the story he sadly missed some of while settling down, taking a load off and hoping later to catch up on this story he missed!

Pharamond has joined the Northern Banquet Table.

Veronica nods agreement with Demura's sentiment, squeezing the other womans' fingers supportively. "There's little that stout courage and a sturdy blade cannot counter," she agrees. "I leave songs and stories to historians, Kael," she advises her cousin. "I don't have a sense for the mythologies and threads. Give me a sturdy blade, decent horse, and a few days hardtack. I'll take that over dusty tomes any day." She leans minutely sideways, giving Demura's shoulder a gentle, pointed nudge of affection.

Norwood has joined the Southern Banquet Table.

Sorrel mutters, "My ... are coming closer ... I think I need ... get ... ... Galen."

Alis has left the Southern Banquet Table.

Sir Rhys, a Valardin Knight, Laurene, a military adjutant, Oaken, an Oakhaven bloodhound leave, following Alis.

Reese looks over to Sorrel with deep concern and a soft gasp escapes from her lips.

Gianna stays for her accolades, of course, but then she's moving over to her assistant and, after conferring quietly, leaving the celebration.

Gianna has left the a whimsical wooden pony.

Willow blinks as she looks over to Sorrel, and bites her lip indecisively, frozen to the spot.

Sanya has left the Southern Banquet Table.

2 Grimhall House Guards, Ivan leave, following Sanya.

Miranda glances over to Sorrel and looks... horrified a moment. "Oh my..." She looks over to Reigna, as if on cue. She breathes in relief, "Oh.. there's the Master Physician."

Reigna gets a concerned look on her face as she looks to Sorrel, "Alright cousin, do you think you can stand?" There is an offer of her arm, as Reigna gets to her feet, moving over towards the Thrax Princess, her eyes sharpening as she rests a gentle hand on Sorrel's belly.

Kael's looking up when Vern makes his way back over toward him, the young man offering forth a few quiet words to Kael before sliding over something. This, for whatever reason, has him ridiculously pleased. It's just a slip of paper, but whatever it is must be good. He chuckles quietly toward Veronica and murmurs, "Fair enough. I think that we have some use for those very things, however." There's a softening of his expression before he leans forward and adds, "You should speak with Amari about the Shadowood situation." He skirts a glance toward Demura, as well. "And you, my lady, if it pleases you. Involving the Kertons."

"I'd like that very much." Demura isn't one to turn down a fight, and Harlex suggestion gets a half smile from her, though her eyes turn at Veronica mischeviously, "And if you're up to the challenge, Captain. Maybe you could invite someone to act as a pair and face both me and the lady Keaton here." The nudge produces a surprising giggle from the Marquessa, who returns it, perhaps a bit stronger than the one given by Veronica, "I can agree with you on that. I'm glad Jenessa is patient enough to read all those ledges, she's been helping me a lot in managing the Redoubt, recently."

a small twilit kingsnake arrives, following Macda.

And after that little speech, the music turns back to cheerful tunes and traditional dances. The mead flows and there's a seemingly endless amount of food. People come and go throughout the night until it eventually winds down.

Harlex moves to stand from the table and between the way everyone (Miranda, Willow, Reese) are looking at Sorrel he lifts his chin a bit. Surprisingly, the swordsman moves around to aid in what way he can with Sorrel. He's a good crutch after all. Though, just before that, he does give Demura and Veronica a look. "Damn, I'd like that very much. Sounds like a fine challenge."

To Kael, Demura resumes her usual serious tone, nodding to the man, "I'll drop her a message, I think I should be of more help this time."

Helena is overheard praising Cristoph.

Willow murmurs to herself, "Gracious. Well, the music was delightful."

Helena is overheard praising Brady: lovely dance, brave Grayhope!

Sorrel gives Reigna a slightly pained but impish look. "I could dance," she declares as she uses Reigna's arm to help herself up on one side, and Harlex's to help on the other. She looks way less concerned than most of the faces in here. "I'll be fine! People have babies all the time. I have *labor* to deal with first."

"Wait.. now? You are... now?" Khanne asks with wide eyes and shock, fear, surprise!

Brady notices some measure of alarm brewing near Sorrel, but doesn't approach. Instead he winds through to crowd to retake his spot near Helena, offering some cider. "Your Highness, I had a lovely night, and hope you did as well... But I think should be going." He bows deeply, waiting a beat for any response before he departs.

Reese checked composure at difficulty 15, rolling 6 lower.

Norwood was going towards the table with all the Laurents, but then saw Elsa in that dress and went NOPE. Nope, nope, nope. Turning he's going to make a bee-line towards the nursery. No one is going to be upset if he goes and reads a bed-time story to the kids right? Or keeps Eadric up playing horses. Because SOME PEOPLE know how to learn to ride.

Brady is overheard praising Helena: Better dancerthan she lets on, and graceful towards a Grayhope.

Norwood has left the Southern Banquet Table.

Bayberry, an Oakhaven juvenile bloodhound, Steadfast, a dunskin stallion courser leave, following Norwood.

The commotion near Sorrel makes Helena look that direction, brows lifting before she realizes what's going on -- just as Brady alights at her side to hand her a drink. "Thank you, Master Grayhope. Travel safely," she says with a smile for him.

Harlex says, "You look fine as the Oathland's sky, princess." He says as he helps with Sorrel and slightly smirks. "Ought not dance though, swing that little Thaxian right out of you."

Reigna wrinkles her nose at Sorrel and shakes her head, "Well, yes, people do have babies all the time, but we hardly want to do so on the dancefloor, do we?" There is a wink to her cousin and she says, "Let us see if we can commandeer a room, mmm? We do not want your water to break while you're wearing such a pretty dress." She glances over to Harlex and is clearly fighting a bark of laughter at the expression. "Well. That would be a new technique."

Veronica smiles. It's a rare and fading thing on her cool features, but it's real and sincere. She obligingly leans away from Demura's bump, as if rocked violently by the gentle affection. Her fingers tighten on Demura's and she turns that smile on her companion, the expression a flash of warmth and meant only for the other woman.

She focuses back on Kael. "Of course," she says, nodding. "I'm sure I can enlist at least one other able blade to the cause," she says, subtly tilting her head towards Demura in a pointed gesture.

Harlax' words get her attention and Veronica regards the fellow with a cool expression while Demura banters with him. The warmth is gone-- Veronica looks like she's contemplating things like reach and angles of attack. But she tilts her chin down a polite fraction of an inch in greeting when he looks to her. "I'm always game to hone my skills," she says with a simple tone and mild shrug. "Partner duels are a little uncommon but they're fine practice for the real world."

Helena nods to the hosts. "Thank you for a lovely evening. The music and story were delightful. Very beautiful," she says, dipping her head, before making her way for the exit -- before any of that water breaking stuff happens!

Danvir looks ober at the excitemnent over near Sorrel and his eyes go wide for a moment then shakes his head and turns to head for the exit where any good man would find himself heading when ladies start having kids.

Macda shows up absolutely too late, but sees Niklas and Sabella off together. She approaches giving her cousin the usual happy greetings and then her attention goes to whispering some inquiry to Niklas before she's rushing off again.

Elsa has left the Southern Banquet Table.

Helena has left the several tables and benches.

Sabella blinks over at Sorrel, "Oh, thank the gods the Marquessa is here! Ah," she glances to Niklas then to Sorrel and back again, "Maybe we should go before you have one of your...we should probably go." Macda gets a kiss and a wave and then she's trying to hurry Niklas along.

With whatever it is that Kael has acquired, he is holding it in hand, looking toward his wife as though to make some grand announcement. Said announcement however is nothing in comparison to whatever she is dealing with, however. When recognition hits, his eyes are widening and he just says one single word to the back of Reigna and Sorrel: "Soon." He's on the cusp of saying more, perhaps, but thereafter he shakes his head and is focusing on his cousin, Veronica. "And we are the stronger for it," he says with a nod. There is no doubting of belief there.

"Everyone doesn't have to leave!" Sorrel objects. "We'll just find a room to borrow. I can't actually have a baby on the dancefloor. That'd make too much of a mess." She glances to the Laurents for guidance. "Duke Cristoph, is there somewhere we could go?"

Reese has likely seen a lot in various and battles and spars. However she looks truly unsettled now! She looks to Sorrel and she look to Reigna and her blue eyes are quite wide and her cheeks are pale. "Oh, the gods, childbirth has to me the scariest thing ever! It is going to hurt so much." She winces and everything. She then gives Sorrel a sheepish smile that she seems to intend as supportive. "Um..then it would be a dancing singing bard baby though."

Reigna gets Light in the Bog from bog light filled chest - please take one.

Cristoph is being bumrushed by his son again, who has escaped the nannies despite it being /really/ late at night for children. While he attempts to wrangle his child, who is climbing him, he catches sight of Sorrel and Reigna and all the others. "Oh, my. Yes! Of course, please. We have several guests rooms that you can, ah- you know." And he here gestures for the group to follow him if they'd like, he'll them to a better place than the ball room.

Harlex tenses his jaw a bit as though fighting back some laughter himself. He continues to act as strong crutch for Sorrel and seems not phased by the commotion. "Deep as the Abyss, that'd be a sight." A little more seriously he says to Reigna, "I'll help you get her up to the room. And anythin' else you need. I got a strong stomach and steady hands. But that's about it."

Sorrel gives Reese a patient sort of look. "I've done this before. Don't panic. It'll be fine. Duke Laurent and Marquessa Reigna will take care of me, and I'm sure Prince Galen will be here soon."

At first, Demura smile reveals she is proud to have produced that kind of reaction from Veronica, "I might have something for you too." She says, on the matter of being enlisted, "But we should talk about it on a later date, it should be fun, though." Her head tilts to face both Harlax and the blonde Keaton, "It will be like that time with the bandits, but the Captain is much more skilled, I assure you."

The whole baby matter causes her to shift her attention at Sorrel and Reigna, "Dear gods, I might not know much about babies, but I know they don't like dancefloors as much as we do." Her brows arc in concern, "Is there something we could do?"

Reigna calls over to Kael, "Beloved? I am going to be helping my cousin for a little while." There is not an ounce of concern on Reigna's face anymore, she's slipped into full healer mode, exuding that sense of serene calm. She looks to Harlex and nods, "That will be very appreciated, I -- You know, I am not sure if I got your name. Many apologies. I am Reigna Keaton -- Marquessa Reigna, Sorrel my dear, here we go. Use our support as much as you need. The second time is easier, usually. Talis was a dream compared to Aeryn, for me." She looks to Demura and gives the Marquessa a bright smile, "Enjoy Duke Cristoph's hospitality. This is going to be just fine."

The whole giving birth thing catches Lisebet's attention, and she grins at Princess Reese's comment. "You might be right, but there is probably a more diplomatic way to say it. I will leave you to take care of it though, Princess Sorrel. Good luck!"

Reese looks over to both Sorrel and Reigna. "Everything is fine, totally fine." She says and smiles, even a happy hopeful smile. "Maybe she will be a girl."

Cristoph has left the Southern Banquet Table.

Sorrel has left the Southern Banquet Table.

3 Thrax Guards, 2 Thrax Elite Guards, Teonia Redreef, Aryka Wyrmfang, Marquessa Pudding, a doughy dog leave, following Sorrel.

Echo, an Oakhaven bloodhound, Sorrel leave, following Cristoph.

Reigna has left the Southern Banquet Table.

Marie, chef of Keaton Hall, 4 Novice Keaton Huntsmen, Gigi, an apprentice physician's assistant leave, following Reigna.

Harlex has left the Southern Banquet Table.

Dolmen, a Crimson Agent leaves, following Harlex.

4 Thrax Guards arrives, following Galen.

Galen walks? Stalks? Storms? Something that combines those would be the best way to describe it, his usual entourage of guards actually having to work to keep up with him as he switfly makes his way through the estate to where he's been told he can find his wife. There are belatedly muttered 'excuse me' and 'apologies' in his wake.

Niklas's face goes a little pale when things start to get all ... medical. Speaking quickly he says, "Goodnight all!" and then hurries our.

Niklas has left the a whimsical wooden pony.

Sabella has left the a whimsical wooden pony.

Elizabetta, a disapproving lady-in-waiting, Lily, an aloof lady-in-waiting, 2 Grayson House Guards, Clark, an exasperated guard leave, following Sabella.

Isabelle, who is just so tired of everyone's nonsense, Sabella leave, following Niklas.

4 Thrax Guards leaves, following Galen.

4 Thrax Guards arrives, following Galen.

4 Thrax Guards leaves, following Galen.

Bayberry, an Oakhaven juvenile bloodhound, Steadfast, a dunskin stallion courser arrive, following Norwood.

Bayberry, an Oakhaven juvenile bloodhound, Steadfast, a dunskin stallion courser leave, following Norwood.

Nicia has left the a whimsical wooden pony.

3 Laurent Guards have been dismissed.

1 Silvershields have been dismissed.

Miranda nods to Reese, "Be well, Ribbons." She looks to Pharamond, "Shall we?"

Veronica watches the birthing drama unfold with her usual implacable serenity. Nothing much seems to phaze her, either. The tall blonde flickers her attention back from Sorrel to Kael and Demura, meeting her companion's eyes for a moment. "That never seems to happen at a convenient hour, does it?" she inquires of Demura. She doesn't seem to be lunging from her seat to offer aid, but there probably isn't much of the birthing process that requires a sword hand, either.

Pharamond has left the Northern Banquet Table.

Miranda has left the Northern Banquet Table.

"She likely has it well in hand," murmurs Kael toward the table, his voice a confident thing, a rueful sort of smile offered along with the words. Now, despite this simple assurance, he is fiddling with that bit of paper in hand and after a moment he rises, that wine set near him actually untouched. He takes the glass and sets it before Veronica, instead. "If you will both excuse me, however? I think I am going to go check how to turn in this voucher while Reigna -- well, really her highness..." He gestures, as though that should say it all.

Pharamond smiles to Reese and he gives a warm wave, before nodding to Lisebet, dipping his head respectfully. "I'm sure I'll see you soon," he says with tthat grin before he offers Miranda his arm and follows to see where they are going next!

Miranda rises slowly, carefully, and slips her arm through Pharamond's, much to the relief of her aide and guards. The pair make their way out.

2 Rubino and Zaffria guards, Brenlin, Aide-de-Camp, Pharamond leave, following Miranda.

Echo, an Oakhaven bloodhound arrives, following Cristoph.

REese rises to her slippered feet and quietly slips out.

Reese has left the Northern Banquet Table.

1 Grayson House Guards, Peaches, a lovely white war filly with a peach saddle, Deliverance, an albino falcon, Stormy, a silvery gray hunting hound, Rascal, a hyper terrier, Rosalie, a lady in waiting leave, following Reese.

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