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Ashford-Whitehawk Wedding Celebration

In the Forest Hall atop Ashford House, the many-tabled banquet hall is excited to serve as the location for the ceremony celebrating the union under Limerance, and to present for the first time as she joins House Ashford from House Whitehawk, the pair of Lady Tabitha Ashford and her betrothed, Lord Pharamond Ashford. Food and festivities will be provided, with a full dinner, desserts (it is Lady Tabitha after all), drinks (and Lord Pharamond, after all), music, and some sort of contest!

Friends and those who wish to celebrate the union are welcome. The couple has asked that in lieu of gifts, donations be made instead for those who can use them. Lady Tabitha has selected The Faith, and Lord Pharamond has selected Raconteur Enterprises as their efforts of choice.

Come, be merry!


May 27, 2019, 6 p.m.

Hosted By

Pharamond Harlan Lisebet Tabitha


Riagnon Quintin Ilmia Kenna Malcolm Josephine(RIP) Silas Rhiannon Olivia Bedivere Mia Evonleigh Delilah Aethan Monique Thesarin Ian Michael Jacali



Arx - Ward of House Grayson - Ashford House - Forest Hall

Largesse Level


Comments and Log

2 Whitehawk Guards arrives, following Bedivere.

2 Leary House Guards, Aurous, A Golden Eagle arrive, following Ilmia.

Laudine, a stern middle-aged maidservant, 2 Whitehawk Guards, Cabbit, a nub-tailed tabby cat leave, following Tabitha.

2 Whitehawk Guards leaves, following Bedivere.

2 Whitehawk Guards arrives, following Bedivere.

Laudine, a stern middle-aged maidservant, 2 Whitehawk Guards, Cabbit, a nub-tailed tabby cat arrive, following Tabitha.

Tabitha drops a large sculpture of a hawk perched on a branch of ash wood.

1 Inquisition Confessors, Scribble, a Delicate Social Butterfly, Pearl, a Maelstrom Forest Cat, 1 Bisland pride guards, 1 Bisland pride guards arrive, following Delilah.

Galina, the glorious Graypeak Mountain dog, Delilah arrive, following Malcolm.

Aurous, A Golden Eagle have been dismissed.

Galina, the glorious Graypeak Mountain dog have been dismissed.

Malcolm has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 1.

Delilah has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 1.

Dash the Guard Corgi have been dismissed.

Arriving on Kenna's arm, Riagnon wears a crisply tailored men's gown embroidered with a decorative lunar detail at the back. His footsteps are sloppy and uneven with his wife's, suggesting a general lack of familiarity between the pair. So weird that the might not be in sync with one another! At one point, he thinks they're going left when Kenna shifts right and it gets even more gangly and awkward.

2 Iron Guardsmen have been dismissed.

3 House Riven Soldiers, 1 Greenwood Tribe Blood Warriors, Lianna, Feydin, a white-tailed eagle, Vigilance, a juvenile female Oakhaven Bloodhound, Berthold arrive, following Mia.

Quintin rushes in. He is pretty presentable, though he looks like he's recently gone through some sort of vigourous activity. Like rushing to a wedding! Still, he's dandied up in a green waistcoat with a stylized pattern of leaves and his hair is mostly orderly, or at least it is once he's pushed it back away from his face.

Ilmia brought Aurous with her, but she hands him off to one of her guards when she sees the smaller animals running about. She didn't need an incident at a wedding. "If you'd like to return home, please feel free to." she tells her guards with a smile. The tall Leary is dressed in green and golden brocade with a bit of a smile as she looks over things and finds a seat to settle into. One that's not marked specifically for someone.

It's pretty impressive that they actually managed to get this far without falling all over one another. Kenna jerks herself back left to avoid falling. There's some whispering that'll go on between the two.

Kenna mutters, "We ... probably practice this at ... point."

Relic arrives, following Harlan.

There is no rushing in for this ducal couple. Lisebet is on Harlan's arm, looking as petite as ever, especially next to her much taller husband. Well, mostly petite. But this is a story for another day - today is all about Tabitha and Pharamond. She smiles as she sees who is there so far, and then gestures to a seat, seeing if Harlan agrees.

Riagnon's eyes nearly bug right the heck out of his head(!) as he tries to eyeball Kenna in his peripheral.

Harlan lightly pats his wife's hand with a fond, loving smile. He nods, and guides his mostly-petite wife to a seat, taking care to make sure she's comfortable. Servants are quite obviously hovering, apparently also keeping an eye out for Cedric.

Riagnon has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 2.

Kenna has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 3.

Kenna has left the Ashford Banquet Section 3.

Kenna has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 2.

Malcolm's entering, chewing on something that he might have snagged on the way out of Shepherd manor to nibble on when taking the short walk with Delilah to Ashford's Forest Hall. He's busy trying to brush a fine haze of white dog hair from his clothing (right handed) while arm-in-arm with Delilah (left-armed occupied) and so it's no terrible surprise that he almost talks with his mouth full until he remembers all otherwise, escorting Duchess Shepherd to a seat before he plunks down beside her.

Lisebet has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 1.

Harlan has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 1.

Gia the peregrine falcon arrives, delivering a message to Malcolm before departing.

Josephine came. Make note of that pharamond. The jeweler easing into the great hall and leaning on her cane as she goes off in search of a place to sit. No fancy cane this time around and dressed for the weather.

Josephine has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 3.

Quintin has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 2.

Ilmia has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 2.

Silas steps in, minus his guard retinue and wiley stubby-legged canine companion. He's dressed in his dazzling white silk attire - though those who have seen him at other fancy venues can deduce it's the same outfit every time. The only company with him is that of a certain curly-haired toddler tucked under his arm - perhaps too casually - who seems particularly fixated on the duck plushie in his hands, not so much the individuals milling around him. First stop? The particularly hawk-centric art within the forest-y hall. "This is my kind of place." And like a nerd, he's appreciating the woodwork, too.

Rhiannon is leaning against a wall, Lord Cadern with her and she leans down to whisper something to him as the room starts to fill up. She waits for the rest of the family to arrive, mostly staying out of the way.

Olivia slips in quietly.

Quintin strides over to take a seat, stretching his right leg out in front of him.

Lord Bedivere Whitehawk arrives just behind Malcom and Delilah, doing so in a regal robe as well as matching trousers and black polished leather shoes.
Underneath one arm is a brown paper package all tied up in silken strings. Scanning about the room, he looks for Tabitha and Pharamond with a smile, a small one, but it is still there. A rare sight to be sure.

Ilmia has left the Ashford Banquet Section 2.

When Mia arrives, it is with her usual brisk pace that strongly suggests it's best not to be in the way of her path and surprsingly little else in the way fanfare. The woman is rarely one to stand on ceremony, and with a fair bit of insistence, all of her guards and retinue are waved off at the door save for one tall, tattooed Greenwood who -- despite all of his scowling -- is most decidedly *not* Thesarin. Until the Count arrives, this one will simply have to suffice as her escort.

Evonleigh drifts in chatting with Aethan, one hand lightly tucked around his elbow -- perhaps to keep him from escaping. She murmurs something quietly to him, her gray-blue eyes sparkling a little as she looks around the hall. A bright smile is thrown to those she knows, a nod to those she doesn't. She tips her head in the direction of Kenna, brows lifting at Aethan, before moving that way.

Evonleigh has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 3.

Evonleigh has left the Ashford Banquet Section 3.

Aethan has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 3.

Aethan has left the Ashford Banquet Section 3.

In theory, the wedding has happened, the contracts have been signed, and folks have been back here at Ashford Manor for a bit. Drinks should be freely flowing to those who wish them, servants see to people's needs (at least regarding food, drink or seating), and the music is a quiet background noise to help serve as counterpoint to the goings-on.

After the lovely jeweler Josephine brings him the box with the present for the new Tabitha Ashford, and once the Duke and Duchess have made their way in, he looks to Tabitha. "Shall we?"

There is the sudden stomp, as every servant makes a simultaneous stomp-stomp of each foot, as while every guest has been announced on their entry, the crier calls: "PRESENTING FOR THE FIRST TIME: LORD TABITHA ASHFORD AND HER HUSBAND, THE LORD PHARAMOND ASHFORD!"

Evonleigh has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 2.

Aethan has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 2.

A swish of burgundy and violet igniting into the stellar hues of the dawn sky give Lilah colour to go alongside Malcolm, and she murmurs to him while they cut their path through the increasingly busy, boisterously warm party. A smile touching her lips, she casts a look back. Her settling comes as light as a feather next to Malcolm, and there's no haze of dog hair for her to worry about. There may be a half-grown cat prowling around and making sharp looks at anything smaller, more edible, but she is quite safe from that haze.

Silas is overheard praising Pharamond: Ever rising!

Silas is overheard praising Tabitha: Ever rising!

Evonleigh is overheard praising Tabitha.

Evonleigh is overheard praising Pharamond.

Aethan does not seem to be trying to escape at the moment -- but it's mostly hard to tell what he's thinking at any point in time, so perhaps he's planning it! Just kidding, he's totally not. Whatever Evonleigh says has him looking to her and murmuring a reply, before he nods once at her choice of seating, heading over there with her and settling down with a nod at those who are there.

Silas has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 1.

Riagnon leans in and whispers to Kenna very loudly for all to hear, "I don't know how you're related to the bride."

Kit, the grey fox, Primus, First of Monique's Assistants, 1 Greenmarch Guard, Tertius, Third of Monique's Assistants, Quartus, Fourth of Monique's Assistants arrive, following Monique.

Realizing he stuttered over his words, and immediately hearing the mistake, he calls out again, "LADY Tabitha Ashford. The lovely, kind, and forgiving LADY Tabitha Ashford."

Realizing he stuttered over his words, and immediately hearing the mistake, he calls out again, "LADY Tabitha Ashford. The lovely, kind, and forgiving LADY Tabitha Ashford."

Harlan nods in approval towards the ever-present Cedric, and stands briefly, smiling, "Uncle, for years, it was an even question if either of us would ever be married. I was ... patient, and particular, and you seemed not the type. I am proud that you have brought Lady Tabitha into our family and home, and I am happy that -you- are happy, Uncle. I cannot tell you how much your happiness, and that of our entire family, means to me. Lady Tabitha -- welcome to Ashford." He grins and says, "I probably won't call you aunt, though." He then sits back down, giving the spotlight back to the newly-wedded couple.

Monique says, "p malcolm=YAAAAAAS?"

Monique says, "ooc :sighs"

There is a faint twitch of Mia's lips at the herald's mistake. Though she does not go so far as to laugh, or to even giggle, she does murmur with amusement, "Well. At least no one will forget Lady Tabitha's first moments as an Ashford...."

"I probably will though," Lisebet calls, mischief shining on her face, as Harlan suggests he'll not call Tabitha aunt. She might just be teasing.

Rhiannon has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 1.

Ilmia gives a look around to see if any of her fellow Leary brood are here and is saddened to not see any. She finds a seat and sinks down into it quietly and with a smile to others around her.

Tabitha clearly was not expecting that foot-stomping, because when she makes her appearance it's with wide, startled eyes and a cringe to her shoulders. She misses the bit about her being a Lord as a result of her momentary shock, too, and thus looks towards Pharamond with eyes like saucers. Confused saucers. "Wai-- what? Why am I kind?" After a bit of blinking there are smiles all across the room, though -- to friends, to family, to people she doesn't know yet, or doesn't know well. It's all rather overwhelming for the young artist, so a blanket of smiling smiles it is. To Harlan she murmurs a warm thank-you, while wrapping a hand under the crook of her husband's elbow.

Silas happily applauds the arrival of the newly-married couple, and throws in a rambunctious holler or two. He smirks at the correction. "Indeed. Especially forgiving," he remarks. He pauses to contemplate over the arrangement of tables around him, before he decides on the table where the Duke and Duchess of Ashford and Shepherd reside. He waves over to his uncle, Bedivere, when he makes his appearance - an invitation to join him if he's so inclined, perhaps?

As husband and wife enter, Josephine rises, clapping her hands for the two with a wide smile from one of the tables.

Quintin rises and applauds the newly-married couple, with enthusiasm.

Rhiannon settles down at a table and then she tugs out a chair for her companion before watching the new couple enter. She rises and claps with the others and then nods to the rest at the table before she sits again when its time. She still hasn't said a word in the open.

Pharamond grins and arrives in with Tabitha, to at least some fan fare and he's chuckling as he leans over and whispers SOMETHING to her, his smile too wide. Does he have a drink? Sure, of course he does. As always, they would need to visit the Duke first and he then says out loud, a bit of humor, "I'll tell you later," he says. "Though you are also definitely forgiving, otherwise this is sure to be a long marriage," he says teasingly giving a bow to the Duke of Ashford before giving waves and grins to everyone else. Still though, his attention is on his bride and that dress. Did you see that dress? Though to be fair he points to the velvet box for Tabitha that is likely near to where Lisebet and Harlan sit to be guarded, as the set is a present for her and he winks. "Happy deciding to put up with me day," he teases.

The unmarried Whitehawk lady rises, beaming for her cousin and her new groom when they are announced, applauding with ladylike claps. Evonleigh looks like she might be a little teary-eyed, watching the new couple enter, before turning to say something to her sister that turns that sweet wistful look into something sharper and amused.

Ilmia has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 2.

Ilmia rises and applauds the entrance of the happy couple.

A friendly nod in Ilmia's direction is a bit short of standing up and waving at the Leary scholar, but Delilah certainly isn't the one to be forgetting her. She rises with the call to greet the others, the abbreviated dip found there as she sings out a merry cheer. "To Lord Pharamond and Lady Tabitha!"

"You are always kind, Lady Tabitha Ashford." says the voice of Bedivere as the older gentleman weaves his way through the gathering in a flow of silk which seems rare for him to wear but here he is, all spiffed up. "Congratulations! May you have a blessed union. says he to Tabitha and Pharamond before then finally reaching a spot adjacent to Silas.

Monique slips in amidst the clapping, probably pretending secretly that it's all for her. Her eyes, emerald and bright, scan the crowd and she spies Josephine. Bright gets brighter and the Greenmarch beauty turns her steps in that direction, with cheery nods of greeting for several others. She doesn't approach the wedded bliss just yet, but her smile is warm for Pharamond and Tabitha when she glances that way.

A murmured word is exchanged briefly between Mia and her guardsman in the midst of all the -- and her -- clapping for the newly presented couple. For whatever reason, the man is given Quintin a particular narrow-eyed, vaguely suspicious look and the Countess peeks around his shoulder to see what, or rather who, it is the man is looking at.

2 Leary House Guards have been dismissed.

Monique has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 3.

Harlan is overheard praising Pharamond: Finally married, uncle!

Harlan is overheard praising Tabitha: Welcome to the family, Lady Tabitha!

Quintin half-turns, glancing behind himself at the look from Mia's guard. Spying only other well-wishers, he turns back, blinking.

As if they've been trained for this sort of thing, the arrival and announcement presents the presentation of the first trays. Lady Tabitha is an artits, and the first dish is nothing short of a reflection of that as white fish has been cured atop piles of salt, and the piles of salt are all different colors - red, blue, pink, green, and some untouched. They add the element of color and beauty to an otherwise simple presentation. The plates are set as people cheer and toast and praise, and the servants then drop back into the corner, the many hues of the food matching the hues of jewelry and attire of those who have worn their finest to help celebrate.

Cadern has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 1.

Olivia approaches Pharamond from behind and wraps her arms around him, "Congratulations Uncle." She turns to Tabitha, "You too Aunt Tabbi"

Thesarin makes his way to the Hall, looking as though he's been very thoroughly washed, groomed, and presented. He still looks like a hard-bit, scarred barbarian from the Grey Forest, but at least he looks like one who's at least making an effort toward formality. He makes his way toward Mia and her escort, moving between guests at his usual plodding pace, and gives a seemingly approving nod toward the bride and groom.

Pharamond grins to Bevidere, shaking his now Uncle-in-Law's hand and he smiles. "I hope so," he says sincerely. "We are most excited." He also steps in to bow before hugging Silas, "Thank you for sharing her with us," he says and beams as he gives Olivia a hug and at the many toasts he raises a glass. "To my bride and her questionable good judgement," he says, having made that his running joke for the engagement all along, but he takes her hand and kisses it, before squeezing Tabitha's hand in his own and clinking his glass to hers, and taking a sip of what is only wine today, nothing heavier. "And thank you all for coming to celebrate with us! To you all!" He raises his glass in another toast.

Lisebet rises, her glass in hand and echoes Pharamond's toast this time. "To all our guests and family!" She at least can give an assist, in case one is needed. Her voice projects pretty well, all things considered.

There's a sigh and a shake of her head before Mia gathers up the long hems of her skirts, lifting them an inch or so to keep them out of her way as she strides purposefully across the room, directly towards Quintin. The Prodigal at her side furrows his brow for a moment before hurrying after her at a pace that indicates he's clearly used to being forced to keep up. "My good Lord Ashford," the Countess declares. "I do believe you've given my guardsman cause for alarm, what with your smiling at a wedding, which would surely only be a torturous and somber affair to any man with good sense." One black brow hefts at her companion. Poor man. It seems even he's not immune to the Countess' dry humor. "I fear you're going to have to explain your good cheer, or Gerrin may raise the alarm and call the banners to come to my defense."

Oh, how much waving it is that Tabitha is doing to everyone! Her cheeks are flushed, her eyes twinkling with undiluted happiness such that her confusion is forgotten, to be replaced by a more blissful kind of ignorance. Lisebet gets a wrinkle-nosed giggle. Aunt indeed! And Bedivere, when he speaks up, is flashed a delighted smile. "Uncle Bedivere! I'm so glad you could make it!" And after a whisper in a servants ear, Josephine is provided with whatever comforts she needs to get cosy over where she sits -- cushions, soft throws, a warm drink, anything of that sort. After giving the Lycene jeweller a warm smile, and another to Olivia! she squeezes Pharamond's hand and joins him in his toast. "To you all! Thank you so much for coming, yes."

Josephine lifts her fingers in a hello from afar to the bride, a bow of her upper body before returning to conversing with Monique

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Kenna before departing.

Tabitha has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 1.

Before Pharamond can get to his hand, Bedivere swaps the package he carries to be held by the right arm whilst his left hand reaches out and takes up that offered shake from the groom. It is somewhat awkward, but the reason why ultimately becomes clear: the Whitehawk War Minister is a one-handed man. Afterwards, "Good to meet you, Lord Pharamond." He soon turns toward Tabitha, "Heard the news, and I could not stay away!" He offers her a bit of a hug before offering the box to her, too.

Silas shifts to accommodate the incoming hug from his new cousin-in-law, grinning from ear to ear. "You're a fine couple already, and I'm happy for you both. It should only get better, now." He chuckles when Lisebet volunteers her duke for babysitting. "This is the quiet one, thankfully. His sister not so much." Indeed, the lad in his lap was continuing to be dreadfully shy - and moving him may indeed have the opposite intended effect. He nods sagely at Malcolm's scheming. "I do the same with my nephews and nieces, much to their chagrin. Delilah will have her work cut out for her."

Quintin blinks at Gerrin, and Mia, and notes, "Please don't call the banners to your defense. My grandfather, were he still alive, would be so disappointed in me if I stirred up some kind of controversy with my kin." He leans in his seat, tipping his chin to Thesarin. "That's your husband, isn't it? The both of you should join us. The fish is delicious, and I'd be happy for the opportunity to talk."

Pharamond did know that, and he nods to Bedivere, making it as smooth as possible. "Glad you made it back in time," he says and as Tabitha sits, he does the social bit, and starts to make his way about the room, pressing a kiss to Tabitha's hand once more and he smiles, "Let me go greet our guests while you stay here and bask in the glory that is how beautiful you look today." And so he begins to move around, tucking the package from Bedivere under his arm with a smile, and he begins to make his way around the room.

Thesarin comes up behind Mia with a nod, glancing over at Quintin with a short grunt. "How's this, now?" The big Prodigal places a hand on his wife's shoulder, giving a nod to the blood warrior at her side and looking back toward Quintin with a short grunt. "I miss aught import?"

As the event goes on, the plates from the appetizer are cleared, and the many colored salts are set on a table besides a tall glass vase. The Herald tries for round 2. "The LADY and Lord Ashford hope that you will say a wish or blessing for them as you pour some salt into the vase, and thus create something new just as they hope to, through your presence and part in their life." And with that, the soup is brought out, a light broth, with mushroom an dgrains for people to enjoy and to further warm them against the cold of the winter's winds and snows.

Pharamond has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 3.

After squeezing Bedivere back with gusto, Tabitha accepts the gift and takes a peek inside the box. The happy squeak she lets out signifies that she's absolutely overjoyed with the present. "Oh, thank you! So beautiful!" She laughs, easy in the older man's company, and comments, "I don't think I've ever worn such beauty before today, actually." She lifts her hand to display the ring, and swishes the skirt of her dress very gently, as is fitting for such a fine garment. "I've been so spoiled, really!" After that, the artist chitchats for a while before taking a seat at the first table, where she beams a smile towards her family both old and new. A wiggle-fingered wave iven to Cyril, and then to Malcolm she notes, "Oh, I imagine I'd talk more if I had such a way with words, you know. Thank you so much for coming, both of you."

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Kenna before departing.

Tabitha gets a channel set iridescite and emerald circlet from Velvet Lined Wooden Jewelery Box.

Quintin inclines his head to Aethan, noting, "I hope I meet him one day, then. I always like a good story. Even ones about cats." That's more to Ilmia. He smiles at Thesarin, though he doesn't answer the Count's question. That really seems like more of a Mia thing.

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Kenna before departing.

Tabitha was wearing the beautiful circlet all along, of course. She adjusts it in her updone hair, looking very pleased with herself.

Delilah casts a pointed look at Silas, and she offers one of those utterly radiant smile. "I have absolutely no worry whatsoever about the outcome of that. You've been nothing but a superlative father and as an uncle, I have no doubt you will keep me entirely upon my toes. Just remember I can teach your children how to ride the mountain dogs, and they might start forming up a cavalry before they are under five. I suspect we might have to inform Duke and Duchess Ashford about our efforts so they can likewise refine it. Lady Rhiannon with her tree unit of archers could have a ground unit to compensate, as long as we all agree naptime will be an essential element here."

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Kenna before departing.

Silas smirks at Malcolm again. "Nothing wrong with having spirit. Kids are supposed to have it. I am glad I got it easier the first time around, though." Cyril recognizes Tabitha and lets out a delighted squeal, but alas, she's way over there paying more attention to that other guy. His blue eyes drift back to Delilah. "Oh the dog-riding lessons are certainly on the agenda, but I think he should learn to walk better first," the Baron jests. "Otherwise I can foil that plan with a simple rawhide bone."

Rhiannon looks over at Delilah. "When I was young, my father would sling me in a carrier around his back and he'd teach me about the trees while I was out of reach and close at hand." She is so quiet in these large settings, "After that, I snuck off into the trees around the house as often as I could. Children can be distracted this way, if they like the forest."

Harlan grins over at Rhiannon and says, "That's all of us, honestly. Benefit of growing up in the forest -- we're always in the trees." And up them. Especially UP them.

Thesarin grunts to Mia and Quinten, and takes a step toward the vase. He takes a handfull of salt, and pours it out his hand into the vase. "Long years of peace. Days of contentment. Strong, healthy children." Pharamond and Tabitha get a nod each, and the Prodigal Count moves back toward the table his wife had been hovering at, to start at the offered soups.

Ilmia looks like she's about to go about telling a story to the table she's seated at!

Lisebet listens to the discussion and then after a moment, she says, "Excuse me just a moment." She gets to her feet, and goes over to add some salt intot he vase, as instructed, pausing quietly for a moment, and then saying, "I wish many many happy years of marriage for Tabitha and Pharamond." She then returns to her seat.

Bedivere tells Pharamond, "Me, too!" He smiles brighter after Tabs squeaks, "You are most welcome." Whilst he still smiles, his hazel eyes shimmer with whelming emotion, but only for a brief moment before he ultimately regains whatever composure he may have almost lost there. He soon looks to Silas, "Speaking of Delilah: thanks to her, I am able to wear these fine clothes, since she designed all of my silken garments." A pause. "Did Cabbit attend?" Then, he notices Thesarin and Mia and gives them a wave with his good hand.

Malcolm says, "Nothin at ALL wrong with havin spirit. Spirit's what -- ah, huh. Dog-riding? Dunno how well that will take, but, it sounds like it's worth a try. Or two." Malcolm's stroking his chin thoughtfully, narrowing his eyes in a thinking squint. "Harnesses for the dogs. Pullin carts. Carriers for the kiddos. That's an idea. That'd be my idea of parentin too.""

"You see, Gerrin? He's kin, and I think it is quite safe." Mia then looks up to her husband at the weight of his hand on her shoulder and announces, "Gerrin was just scowling at Lord Ashford in your absence, my lord. I do believe he happens to be Lord Quintin Ashford in particular, one of my cousins through a great-uncle, but given how very few of them I am, I think it best to keep them all, regardless of how distant." A pause. "Lord Ashford, my husband, Count Thesarin Riven."

The squeal does it, and Tabitha is already making a beeline towards Cyril, whereupon she tickles him on the ribs and plants a careful peck on top of his head. Giggle, she finds a seat next to Silas or at least nearby, her hands upon her lap and her shoulders lifting in a delighted 'I'm married!' way. A wave is given to Mia and Thesarin, the bright, wide smile still plastered upon her face. She's going to have an achey jaw, no doubt. Meanwhile there's a purring sound near Bedivere's legs, where a nubtailed tabby cat headbutts against him. Cabbit heard his name, apparently. Bedivere might notice that the feline is wearing a collar with an aeterna bow attached to the back of it. He looks very dapper.

Soup doesn't take too long unless people are too busy chatting and socializing! To be fair though, they were small bowls meant simply as a change of taste and something to warm before the salad is brought. That too is allowed just enough time to sit before the first course is brought out. Small roasted pheasant in lemon, garlic and rosemary is served with small potatoes and carrots, a small cut medley of them to allow enough of the flavor and contrast to the bird without causing one to get too full knowing that there is a second course. The servants move with quiet professionalism and the music dulls, as the performers also are given something to eat, and rotate through their solos so they can enjoy the warm meal.

Evonleigh excuses herself from her table as she rises to go to the table with the salt and vase to add her blessing. She takes up a handful of the salt. "Laughter of voices, warmth of home, kindred of spirit -- enjoy your lives together and always remember that you are loved, and stronger in your love for one another." She kisses her hand holding the salt, and then sprinkles the colorful grains into the vase to add to those already there, then returns to her seat.

Lisebet givesRhiannon a long look, and then Harlan. She smiles though. "Olivia does love children," she says eventually. "It will I am sure be good to have many around the same age to play with each other. And apparently to be used as weapons against their aunts and uncles." A pause. "This could be quite entertaining, I have to admit."

Olivia smiles at Lisebet. "I do like children! I can't wait to have one... or twenty."

Harlan stands and moves over to the vase, taking a moment to portion out a variety of sands, mostly in natural colors -- lots of greens and browns and such. He drizzles them in in no particular order, then says, "I wish you both all the happiness you can reach out and grab. There will always be challenges, and I am certain that the two of you will absolutely overcome them." He lifts a glass he brought with him and says, simply, "Ever rising."

Quintin nods to Mia. "That's me, yes. Good to meet you, Count Thesarin," he tells the man. The salt vase is given a thoughtful look, and he rises from his seat.

Pharamond rises from the banquet table with another case tucked under his arm and he makes his way over to the next to greet more guests, and he watches as people make the piece of art that will be the vase filled with multicolored swirling salts by the time this is done. Then he settles at the next table.

Pharamond has left the Ashford Banquet Section 3.

Pharamond has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 3.

Pharamond has left the Ashford Banquet Section 3.

Pharamond has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 2.

Bedivere crouches slightly and scoops up Cabbit into his left/only hand then rises up with him held close, "Well, look at you." says he quietly to the acquired feline. Very dapper, indeed! Cat and human alike, those dapper gents take their seats to catch up on the fine dining. Cabbit gets a silk-clad lap for his own seating and most likely a few bits of sneaky food put under the table edge for him, too.

Better late than never? Ian is literally (well not literally, but pretty close to it) shaking off a couple of retainers who want to talk to him about things as he passes into Ashford House from outside. Someone with really good hearing might even make out his low, stern tone of voice as he tells the people trying to get his attention for things that they're going to have to be big boys and girls and handle it for a few hours. "When I tell you not to bother me unless something is on fire or someone is dying, that's what I mean." A few minutes later, he steps into the room; his expression and bearing show no hint of the conversation he just escaped.

Bedivere has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 1.

Michael was clearly here the whole time. Clearly. Got caught at the drink station, cornered by an old acquitance, a faux-auntie who just needs to bend his ear about something or remind him of just HOW TALL he has grown. Grayson events are always like this for Michael. Mia though, Mia the Good Aunt gets a notice and he begs off of bantering with someone to squirrel his way through the crowd towards people he recognizes. "Countess Riven. If you don't stand with me, I may never get a chance to eat."

Silas gives Bedivere a long once-over. "You look incredibly dapper, uncle. Delilah has done you justice." He may, indeed, be a touch envious. When it's made clear that his son's clarion call to Tabitha is going to be successful, as it often was, he shifts again to let the toddler happily indulge his aunt. There -may- be some possessive hair pulls, but with Tabitha's hair properly done up, these attempts are thankfully less successful than they normally would have been. "I figured he'd like to get in a few hugs," Silas explains to Tabitha. "But he'll miss you. Visit the nursery, when you can." Indeed, what was once a shy boy was now a delighted boy, now that Tabby was next to him. "And I'll make sure he visits, once he's able. The Ashfords are a fun bunch."

Chub Chub, A fat black rat with an eyepatch, Witness, The Ashen Jackal, Scandal, The White Jackal, Vandal, The Black Jackal arrive, following Jacali.

"Lord Ashford." Thesarin gives Quintin a nod, and a grunt. "Stood with the Duke at Stormwall. Well met." The big man raises his hand toward Tabitha, and then again toward Bedivere at the table with the bride and groom. He moves to take a seat with a grunt, setling in and with a grunt.

Thesarin has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 2.

Ilmia gives a bit of a smile to her table and then rises, she heads over to the vase and performs the little ritual in a quiet way. The tall woman catches sight of Michael and there's a moment taken to turn around and go back to her table and have a seat.

Mia's dark eyes trail slowly up towards Michael's face, regarding him with one arched brow and her head canted to the side. "Are you hoping that I will scare off the wolves?," she asks, her lips pursing with amusement. Given that it seems she's frightened poor Quintin off to make a public speech rather than be gawked at, she simply hooks her hand into the crook of Michael's elbow whether he offered it or not.

Meandering into the party is a woman in red; it's a wild style, unique, as bold as the creature that wears it, but despite how loud it might all be, Jacali says barely a word to anyone. Sure, there's the vague smile that she affords most, dry and empty as a politician's promise, but it's there. The brim of her tophat casts a shadow over her pale gaze, but the occasional lift of her hand and doff of her cap to those that greet her, unlikely as it is at these events, is offered. She finds herself somewhere to lurk, having left her trio of monochromatic cronies somewhere outside.
Hopefully they aren't stealing anything.

Smiling over to Silas, Bedivere replies back, "Thank you. So do you, Nephew. And, Cabbit, too." He does not tend to laugh much but for this occassion, the aged/one-handed Bedivere does so. After Silas comments on the Ashfords, "Unfortunately, I do not know many, but I am already admire Lord Pharamond." Quieting down, he carefully savors the reception food.

Over at one of the banquet tables, Tabitha is sitting beamingly happy with little Cyril Whitehawk in her arms, giving him top-quality auntyhugs. As new arrivals filter in, she carefully lifts a hand to wave at them, still smiling, before going back to making nonsense talk with the child. Lots of 'How is my best Cyril?' and so forth. Luckily enough his hands are clean and there's no smudging or greasing up her beautiful dress!

The last course is brought out, this one a far more hearty dish as it is a venison that's been braised for 24 hours, so that it is nearly fall apart tender and has been cooked in some sort of brandy and berry, concoction, and is served over a pumpkin mash of some sort, the pumpkin having been covered with brown sugar and pecans, so that it has a crunch and sweetness, giving a texture change to the dish. It is a bit dense, so only a bit is served so as not to disrupt the ability of those present to get up and dance soon!

Michael's absconding from the further tables to more intimate conversations saves him enough that he shouldn't /need/ Mia's assistance. "Please." The good Lord nearly begs. But then Mia's hand slips around his elbow and his chin lifts upwards as if CLEARLY this is the right place to be. A quick wink towards Ilmia since she has seemed to spot him. Before he is leaning sideways towards Countess Riven.

Rhiannon gives Harlan a little smile. "The proper way to raise Ashfords. It also keeps the children occupied. They get in less trouble if they're focusing on getting up into a difficult tree."

Malcolm has left the Ashford Banquet Section 1.

Silas's attention, naturally, gravitates towards the top hat-wearing lady who has just made a spectacular entrance. He looks mightily impressed. "Aaaand it looks like we've just been outshone," he asides to Bedivere. A warmer smile is given to his uncle's favorite feline. "I'm glad Cabbit is staying. The dogs like him more than he likes them." With his son properly distracted, the baron -finally- begins to dig in and taste the wonderful food - and quite heartily so, at that.

Olivia looks up and sees Jacali come in. She waves the woman over with a bright smile on her face, "Jac! You made it! Come sit with me?"

Olivia has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 3.

Ian has arrived just in time for venison, it appears. He scans the crowd until he catches sight of Aethan and angles in his direction. He doesn't say anything until he's settling into a seat nearby, though; he watches his feet for the duration of the trip over.

Ian has joined the Ashford Banquet Section 2.

Harlan nods towards Rhiannon with a grin, "Indeed. A tradition that shall continue, I believe." He gives his wife a sidelong look, before turning to conversation at his table.

As people settle into the final dish, the Herald steps forward again. "Countess Riven would like the chance to address the fortunate couple, LADY Tabitha and Lord Pharamond." Oh yes, there's extra emphasis on the Lady now. Each. And. Every. Time. Fool me once they say...but the Herald will make sure that victory is his before the day is out!

Delilah has left the Ashford Banquet Section 1.

1 Inquisition Confessors, Scribble, a Delicate Social Butterfly, Pearl, a Maelstrom Forest Cat, 1 Bisland pride guards, 1 Bisland pride guards leave, following Delilah.

Quintin takes a few moments to pour a handful of sand into the vase, murmuring something quietly about strong alliances, warmth, and something else about everyone remaining sane. Then he heads back to the table. He inclines his head to Ian when he spots the man, noting, "I believe Princess Sorrel might be pointing a new student your way soon."

Michael seemed perfectly content to banter and chatter with Mia until her /name/ is announced and he is reaching to try and get her to unhand him.

"Lord Michael." Thesarin looks toward the Bisland standing with his wife, and raises his chin toward the man. "How now. Should try the stag--cooks know their work."

After what Silas says, Bedivere takes a break on the food, glances up toward where Jacali is, and then he lightly nods. "I have to agree." He glances down toward the lap cat with the aeterna bow, "Staying here at the Ashford estate, or our Whitehawk one?" He turns to see Lisebet and quietly speaks her way.

There's a vague squinting of her eyes as Olivia calls out her name, Jac's attentions ever so slowly turning that way, her chin lifting so that she might appropriately look down her nose at the Ashford gal, as is her way. She sniffs softly, her eyes slinking to a sidelong glance at those she had been lounging near, pale lips pursing before she hisses in a breath through her teeth.
"Right, lads," Who she's talking to is a mystery, really. "That's me away. I know, I know, you promised yer tears they'd only need fall for the vows what're on their way... yet here we are, here we are," She gives a shake of her tophatted head, letting it hang forward in somber display, "Weep not for my departure, but bask in the sunlight what's sure to fire from my rear, near or far." She nods toward them, then turns to head toward where Olivia has found herself.
As she passes by Silas, there is a quick sort of walking curstey that she somehow manages to pull off, smile growing wide enough for dimples to display ever so briefly before she drifts right on by to join where the invitation was extended.
"Chickadee," She speaks, nearing Olivia, "Wearin' that dress, you are." She then quiets herself again as people are announced and the party begins proper.

Mia's dark eyes turn towards the crier as her name is announced. Sooner than she expected, and while she was in whispered conversation with Michael, no less. She releases her hold on the poor man's elbow lest any eyes fall to him, and finds her way to one of the attendants carrying a glass. A wedding speech, after all, cannnot be given without a glass in hand. It would hardly count as a speech at all. Clearing her throat for a moment, she then seeks out first Pharamond's face, offering the man a nod, and then Tabitha, to whom she offers one of her very, very rare smiles. "My lord. My dear lady. I know that you have asked that no gifts be given to you on your wedding day, so I thought that perhaps you might indulge me by allowing me to offer you a few words instead."

"Some of us are fortunate to marry according to the call of our hearts, drawn by a happy sigh and romantic dream to another. Others of us are marry for duty, to honor our Houses and serve them well by forging an unbreakable bond to another. Often -- to often -- we see these in opposition to one another, two separate ends of a continuum, with little to nothing shared between them. But if you will permit me, I will share with you all now a very great secret that I have uncovered from many long years of marriage. You must forgive me, however, if I present it to you from the perspective of a linguist, because I have been a student of language nearly as long as I have been a wife." Mia pauses then for a moment, idly thumbing her glass, as she considers her next words.

"The secret is this -- regardless of how they began, or of what a couple held in their hearts the day which they took their vows, there is one way in which all marriages are the same. And that is what they teaches us about the sacrifice of real love. Love is not a noun. It is not a thing to be possessed or not, to have or to lack, to fall into or out of as though one's tripped over their own feet. Love is something which we do -- an active choice, made and pursued each day, an endeavor which requires our will and our effort to practice it. It is a decision to see the best in one another, to forgive each other's faults. To act as witness to one another's lives, to stand together and be stronger for it. It is to build a foundation, day by day and stone by stone, so strong as to bear the weight of all your dreams, and the futures of your children, and their children after them. So if I were to wish any blessing upon you and your husband, my dear, it is this -- the strength to spend many long days loving one another, and the happiness that comes from love's success."

Quintin blinks a few times during Mia's speech. Then he takes up his glass and raises it in a toast. "Well said," he announces.

Silas is overheard praising Mia: Fully agreed!

Harlan is overheard praising Mia: Excellent speech!

Pharamond hops up after squeezing Evonleighs' hands and moves over to Ian's personal space...but does not trip on the cane as he pats the man heartily on the shoulder, "Greetings," he intones fondly, "Glad you could make it." He stands then and looks to everyone about, and makes his way over to stand beside Tabitha as Mia speaks, as the Countess' words are spoken the music stops as well, and he simply holds Tabitha's hand. "Thank you," he offers, and for one of those rare times, Pharamond pulls out the deep sincere bow, holding it before rising slowly after the words are spoken and he raises his glass in toast. "Hear Hear!"

Pharamond is overheard praising Mia: Words to live by!

Ilmia is overheard praising Mia: Fine words!

Silas raises his glass of wine, to toast Mia's speech. "To 'love' the verb, not the noun."

Michael is overheard praising Mia: Lovely. ust Lovely.

Oh. There are speeches. Ian had just settled in and asked something of Aethan in a wry tone of voice when Mia starts speaking in an official sounding capacity, and he seems to belatedly remember where he is. Wedding. Right. He puts on his serious wedding face -- which looks like all of his other serious faces, really. So, you know, all of them. "Uh, congratulations," he says to Pharamond, with the air of someone trying to remember how these things are supposed to go.

Bedivere is overheard praising Tabitha: Congratulations on your Union!

Bedivere is overheard praising Pharamond: Congratulations on your Union!

Ian is overheard praising Pharamond: Good job on getting married.

Ian is overheard praising Tabitha: Good job on getting married.

Riagnon is overheard praising Pharamond: You did it! \o/

Riagnon is overheard praising Tabitha: You did it! \o/

Thesarin smiles at Mia. An actual smile, which isn't something he does often. He lifts a cup in her direction, and settles back, resting an elbow on the table behind him.

Ilmia gives a smile at the speech and she applauds after Mia is done, "Maybe I'll find a husband at some point." she muses as she picks up her glass. Then she says something quiet to her tablemates.

Bedivere is overheard praising Mia: Well spoken!

Michael manages to stand alone, to catch a glass of wonderful bubbly and hold it in hand as Mia gives her speech. He manages at stony demeanor for quite awhile, till the speech peters out well wishes and his hand lifts to drag knuckles across the underside of his eyes. Gah. The dust in here. Onions in that dish. Too much.

During and following Mia's eloquent speech, Tabitha's eyes are full of rapt attention, listening to every word with utter focus. When they come to a close, the artist smile brightly and nods, and then even raises her voice louder than it would usually be heard. "You're one of the wisest people I know, Countess. I'll keep your words close to my heart, and I thank you for your kindness." Though she has Cyril in her arms, and can't raise a toast or clap, she takes her nephew's hand and very lightly pats her fingers to them in lieu of applause. Then she peeks a look over to Pharamond, giggling sweetly, before her face turns into something a little more perplexed. She mouths, 'Lady? What?'

The dishes are cleaned after Mia finishes her speech, and though slightly anticlimactic in the wake of that fine speech, dessert is brought out on two tables, and the music starts up again. Pharamond takes Tabitha's hand and he smiles, "Come...let's do our contest we have for everyone and then we can open the floor up to dancing."

Pharamond calls out to all, "Like any good wedding, today is about pairing. We ask each of you to pair up if you wish to partake in our little game. One person will need to be of somewhat capable physical ability while being able to follow directions, and the other will need to be good at giving them. I'm not sure I'm particularly good at either so it's a good thing that Tabitha and I are the judges for this merry game, and not participating."

Harlan looks over at Lisebet and grins, " Ithink I know which order that goes for us."

Olivia nods at Jacali, "Course I am! I was saving it for today." She smiles at the woman and gives her a side hug.

Bedivere apparently missed the memo on 'no gifts'. Whoops. He blinks once then hears out those wise words, doing so with what is a wistful look within his hazel eyes. After a few moments, he 'comes to' during the table talk which 'wakes up' the older gentleman from his momentary reverie. "Well spoken, Countess Mia." says he. He turns back to the table talk for a quick moment.

Lisebet blinks at her husband and laughs. "If you wish to participate, we can certainly try."

Pharamond has left the Ashford Banquet Section 2.

Tabitha is overheard praising Mia: Such fine and wise words!

Mia smiles brightly as she toasts the bride and groom -- and then promptly exhales a sigh when the business of the reception begins again, allowing her to escape the eyes of others. To Bedievere, she inclines her head deeply. "Thank you, Lord Whitehawk. My congratulations to you as well, on seeing so many of your nieces well and happily wed."

Jacali leans toward Olivia to mutter, "I'll be marryin' for spite, tell you that now, be some grand bloody experiment to see just how far you can push a man 'fore he flings himself ragin' naked through the streets, tears streakin' his cheeks and nowt but gibberin', howlin' accusation spillin' from his lips." She nods once then, before her attentions drift toward Mia, unevenly gloved hands lifting to offer some applause, and that vacant smile of hers. "S'nice, that."

..and then there's mention of dancing.

Jacali pulls a bit of a face, sitting herself onto a chair finally with all the grace and finesse of something lacking bones, yet with somehow an abundance of legs. It's a whole thing. She gives a firm shake of her head, before gesturing Olivia toward the floor, providing a pre-emptive: "Nope."

Silas' choice of toast, to the verb, earns a raise of Evonleigh's glass as well, as she chuckles. "Well spoken," she murmurs, regarding the Countess' words, a nod for Mia and a smile as she catches that sight of Thesarin's smile as well. She glances over at Aethan at the mention of the contest. "I'm not that great at giving directions, despite being a director of late, but you're more capable of physical tasks," Evonleigh tells the Admiral. Still she offers her hand, brows lifting.

Silas moves to relieve Tabitha of her nephew when Pharamond comes to play proper host. He promptly attempts to calm the upset toddler with the plushie duck, with middling success. When the upcoming contest apparently calls for pairs, Silas looks expectantly at Bedivere. "Want to try, whatever it is?"

Quintin peers about in the hopes of spying a partner. There's Olivia, and he raises his eyebrows and gives her a grin. Yeah?

Olivia nods to Quintin, then turns to Jacali, "We can dance after the game!"

Jacali once more offers: "Nope."

Aethan raises his glass at the toast, though his seems to be water rather than anything stronger. He sets it down then, just when Evonleigh invites him to play. He does look as though he's weighing his options a little -- but only for a moment. Then he nods, standing up with her. "All right," he says. "But I can't promise that I'll be any good. Hopefully I don't embarrass you."

Thesarin starts to stand, setting one big palm on the table and pushing himself up. He takes a few long steps toward Mia, and holds out a hand. "Well, Countess?"

Michael perks up and downs his drink before lifting his hand upwards suddenly. The other with the glass pointing towards Monique, and then himself. Back and forth. Aha. Swallowed. "Lady Greenmarch and I will be play."

Quintin has another gulp of wine and sets his glass aside before getting up and loping over toward Olivia. "Would you like to give me orders?"

Joephine is rising, not to partake of party games, but to start making her way to the exit with a clack of her cane as she goes.

Is that a hint of a smile playing itself around Ian's mouth when Evonleigh convinces his stoic older brother to play games? Is that a glitter of mischief in his eyes? It's probably just a trick of the light.

"I suppose it is only fair after I went and made you dance at the last one," Mia replies, tucking her long fingers into Thesarin's hand.

There was that canvas and it is turned around and uncovered and upon it is a very comedic sketch of PHaramond on one knee, with a just-as-comedic sketch of Tabitha holding an arrow. Each couple is handed a 'pin' that is a heart. "The goal here..." he says, "Is to pin that heart with the arrow in it..." the arrow-shaped pin "As close to my real heart...ON THE possible." He smiles, "That however is awfully easy, so..." he reaches into a box after taking out the pins and he holds up...blindfolds. "One of you will be spun around repeatdly and then sent towards the target. The other will give directions. Whoever gets their pin the closest....well you will be declared winners and receive a prize that is near and dear to our hearts." the Heart on the Ashford.

Harlan checked stamina + athletics at difficulty 30, rolling 37 higher.

There's a slight roll of eyes at Aethan's talk of embarrassment. "Oh, yes. That'll happen," Evonleigh says, as she takes his hand to pull him up from the table. She smirks at Ian, catching the smirk, before turning to listen to directions, then conferring with Aethan quietly.

Kenna bounces to her feet and rolls her eyes. "This will be //fine//." There's no way that it's going to be fine.

Monique sees Josephine off with a final slightly licentious hug and then off she goes to meet Michael across the room with a cool upnod. It's on.

Harlan has a blindfold put upon him, and he's spun around a few times. That said -- Harlan's definitely headed the right way -- hopefully his wife can guide him properly to the target!

Lisebet does spy Josephine and she waves her way in greeting and good bye. She sticks with her husband, obviously, for whatever the game will be. Those astute may have noticed she's drinking tea today. Lemon ginger.

Josephine has left the Ashford Banquet Section 3.

Demetria Arcuri leaves, following Josephine.

Lisebet checked charm + manipulation at difficulty 15, rolling 25 higher.

Bedivere says, "Yes."

Harlan checked luck at difficulty 15, rolling 3 higher.

Quintin checked stamina + athletics at difficulty 30, rolling 8 higher.

Kenna uses thsi moment of up and out of her seat to sneak to Tabitha's side. There's a cousin she hasn't wrapped her arms about yet and congratulated. "Tabitha, congradulations!"

Thesarin checked stamina + athletics at difficulty 30, rolling 27 higher.

Olivia checked charm + leadership at difficulty 15, rolling 7 lower.

Quintin checked luck at difficulty 15, rolling 4 lower.

Quintin is blindfolded and spun about. Maybe he shouldn't have had wine, but at least it wasn't that much wine. Pin in hand, he walks toward the target, or at least where Olivia tells him the target is. It's... it's not going very well. "Wait, what?" he calls to Olivia over the din.

Aethan checked command + leadership at difficulty 30, rolling 19 higher.

Though she's still got Cyril snuggled up in her arms as she smiling watches the contest that's about to begin, it's somehow very easy for Tabitha to unhook an arm from the child, and wrap it around Kenna. Beaming, she whispers something to her cousin.

Evonleigh checked composure + athletics at difficulty 30, rolling 18 higher.

Evonleigh checked luck at difficulty 15, rolling 0 higher.

Michael checked stamina + athletics at difficulty 30, rolling 25 higher.

Monique checked charm + manipulation at difficulty 20, rolling 22 higher.

Michael checked luck at difficulty 15, rolling 4 lower.

Mia checked command + diplomacy at difficulty 20, rolling 33 higher.

Thesarin checked luck at difficulty 15, rolling 7 lower.

Michael laughs uproariously at someone else's attempt. "Oh no. No children for Pharamond." Oh gosh. Michael's blindfold is applied judiciously, and checked even more strenously by the one tying it. Her hand makes as if to swat down upon Michael's face, and when he doesn't blink she nods and hands him off to get spun like a top. Then he straighens his walk, heading towards the Pharamond Portrait and stops to listen to Monique's /demands/ Then umpfh. Pin into place.

Kenna checked charm + manipulation at difficulty 20, rolling 30 higher.

Riagnon checked stamina + athletics at difficulty 30, rolling 39 higher.

Riagnon checked luck at difficulty 15, rolling 10 higher.

Silas checked stamina + athletics at difficulty 30, rolling 35 higher.

Silas checked luck at difficulty 15, rolling 5 higher.

Bedivere checked command + leadership at difficulty 20, rolling 35 higher.

Kenna kisses Tabitha's cheek once more. "I'm lovely. I need to go and embarrass Acheron for a second though, I'll be back!"

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Mia before departing.

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Mia before departing.

"Okay, dodge that server, Michael!" Monique commands. "No, no, not that one. The one to your left. The other one. Yes, that one. Now several steps forward... oh! Watch that beautiful woman with the cleavage spilling out of her gown... no, don't try to take off your blindfold for that. Several more steps forward, and two to the right. Good, good!"

With the ease of a war commander (which he is), Lord Bedivere easily instructs his noble nephew in the fine art of pinning the arrow-striken heart upon Pharamond's heart (the one on the canvas, even, just like the man said so).

Pharamond is overheard praising Monique: Let there be cleavage!

Thesarin blunders along behind the blindfold, inadvertantly elbowing Quintin aside as he moves under Mia's directions--and suffering her admonishments for it. He lurches a little, but keeps his balance until he's stuck the pin on the canvas and removes the blindfold to have a look.

It likely wasn't terribly fair, in all honesty. Silas and Bedivere are family, and seem to strategize very well together. What Bedivere lacks in dexterity, Silas more than makes up for it, and Bedivere is very, very good at commanding people on where to go - and the pin goes right where it belongs. Silas removes the blindfold when the pin is placed fully in - no cheating here - and he gives his uncle a bright thumb's up.

"Hey, Riagnon." Kenna says thoughtfully. "Maybe all that yelling in the hallways is actually useful." Then Kenna's going to yell "JUST DON'T STOP WALKING." Very helpful.

Ilmia has left the Ashford Banquet Section 2.

If there is one thing that Mia Riven is exceedingly good at it, it's bossing about her husband -- and nearly anyone else who happens to be within earshot -- with unflappable confidence. Whether or not he's inclined to listen, however, is an entirely different matter. Her lips are pursed thoughtfully as she watches him stumble about, adding a very helpful, "On his *heart*, not his *nose*, my lord. Lower. Lower. Ahh---," and there the pin is stuck.

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Ian before departing.

Riagnon stumbles over his feet a lot but that seems to be part of his system in the end, or at least his sense of direction seems to have made natural adjustments.

Aethan calls out directions to Evonleigh, but the directions don't help his partner stick the pin correctly -- hopefully he's better at it when he's at sea. He does have to let out a little huff of amusement, though mostly at himself as he shakes his head. "Good effort," he says when she's put their pin in, though they did not win.

Evonleigh manages to stick the thing somewhere on the painting, turning to look at her work -- it's there! She accomplished almost what was asked of her -- it's just not the right spot. Maybe it was when he said "Right!" that she thought he meant "that's right," ending up somewhere to the left of center. "Not cut out for your navy, I see," she tells Aethan with a grin, and grabs a glass of wine to drink from, before heading over to lean against Tabitha. "You look beautiful, cousin," she says, softly kissing Tabitha's temple. "This is a lovely party." And not even a message about unhappy Grayreeves to ruin it!

Lisebet has to laugh, watching all those who follow after her and Harlan. It amazes her that they show as well as they do, all things considered. "Well done everyone!" Okay, she's very bright eyed and laughing, probably at Monique's idea of directing her game partner. "I'll have to remember that for next time."

Olivia tries to direct Quintin, but ends up sending him right towards Harlan with his pin.

Harlan uses a hand to guide his cousin -elsewhere- though.

Quintin announces, "I don't know what's happening."

Rhiannon just watches the game, sitting back in her chair. She doesn't say much, but she's watching carefully, eyes picking up most of the action around the room.

Olivia shouts, "Turn to the left and stick it!" Now it seems she is trying to get Harlan poked.

Tabitha is still here! She's giggling away, cheeks rosy at at the various degrees of success during the game, looking especially delighted when Silas and Bedivere ace it. When Evonleigh comes over, she turns to her cousin with a radiant smile and leans against her gently so as not to push her over, with Cyril still in arm. Aunty snugs! The shorter of the two Whitehawk giggles with shy pride and wrinkles her nose. "Thank you! I do feel rather pretty, truth be told. And really, Pharamond is so wonderful at arranging parties. I wouldn't have known where to start without him. Then with a raise of eyebrows she asks, "How are you? I imagine the play is coming along nicely."

Harlan says blandly, "Arrows do hurt quite a bit, yes." He's joking, right?

Ilmia takes the time during the game to make a quiet exit. Apparently there is business to attend to elsewhere and she doesn't want to interrupt the celebration.

Ian laughs under his breath as he watches Aethan try to give orders to Evonleigh. His laughter trails off when he notices a messenger who has come into the room heading in his direction. The poor man stops walking when he sees Ian's dark look. "Is that from Jak?"

The messenger looks around, maybe considering the wisdom of just backing slowly away and going onto his next delivery. "Uh..... no?"

"Bring it here, then," Ian sighs.

"I... I really don't think anyone is standing that close to the board, Liv," Quintin calls to Olivia. He sounds... suspicious.

Ilmia is overheard praising Pharamond: For the lovely wedding celebration!

Olivia shouts again, "POKE IT!"

Ilmia is overheard praising Tabitha: For the lovely wedding celebration!

Harlan says mildly, "Cousin, I'd not listen to her. You can take the blindfold off, the contest has ended."

After the thumbs up from Silas, Bedivere lifts up his stump arm, doing so in a similar fashion. After Nephew and Uncle have sat down at respective seating, doing so with Cabbit again set upon Bedi's lap, the older gent speaks to the immediate table with quieted words.

"Well" Thesarin turns and starts back toward Mia, and after two short steps, pauses and grabs hold of a chair to steady himself. He looks toward Mia with a grunt and a short nod as he waits for the dizziness to fade. "Gave it a go."

Evonleigh catches sight of Ilmia leaving, and smiles to lift a hand in farewell. "Good to see you again. I will catch that cat's tale the next time we meet!"

Quintin turns toward Olivia's voice, holding the pin up. When Harlan addresses him, however, he tugs his blindfold down and glances around, blinking incredulously. How did he wind up all the way over here?

Tabitha is overheard praising Pharamond: The best wedding party I could have asked for!

Silas is overheard praising Riagnon: The thinnest of margins! Iron Guard representin'

Tabitha is overheard praising Lisebet: The best wedding party I could have asked for!

Aurous, A Golden Eagle leaves, following Ilmia.

Silas is overheard praising Kenna: The thinnest of margins! Iron Guard representin'

Tabitha is overheard praising Harlan: The best wedding party I could have asked for!

Monique is overheard praising Pharamond: Good catch

"More like I have a very narrow window of effectiveness," Aethan says with a shake of his head at Evonleigh's words. "Luckily I seem to do better at sea." He starts to say something more, but he notices the messenger, and then looks over at his brother. He //almost// laughs. Not quite. But the idea is there.

The playing done and Kenna is laughing and shaking her head. Tabitha gets one more kiss, "We have to go now. Don't do anything I wouldn't do, okay? And come visit soon." With that Kenna goes to hunt down Riagnon. They try the arm in arm thing again, and this time they almost run into one another instead of pulling apart. It's progress.

Monique is overheard praising Tabitha: Well, he's funny, at least

The game ends and there is still hopefully no one poked. The winners are discretely awarded their prize as Tabitha is able to hug the winners and slip them their prize, though those paying attention see the bit of Stygian and Irridescite...the same materials their wedding bands are made out of that were gifted to them from Princess Sabine at her relay race. And so it is a personal touch indeed that is given as prizes to the winners before the music starts up once more. "Will the Lord and Lady Ashford please come to the floor for their first dance, before the floor is opened up to everyone!"

Olivia grunts when Quintin fails to poke Harlan.

Kenna has left the Ashford Banquet Section 2.

Riagnon has left the Ashford Banquet Section 2.

Riagnon leaves, following Kenna.

Harlan chuckles towards Quintin, and says, "Good try though, cousin." He grins and settles back down, taking his wife's hand in his.

Mia shakes her head slowly, surpressing a chuckle, and hooks her arm into Thesarin's in a subtle attempt to steady him. "I imagine that spinning in circles and sticking sharp bits into people's chests was a very different game where you raised, my lord."

Ian opens the note and looks it over, a quick skim and then a more careful read. He holds out a hand for whatever writing implement the messenger usually carries, and writes a short reply on the bottom of the paper in a cramped, obsessively neat hand.

Silas is overheard praising Harlan: Ever rising part 2!

Silas is overheard praising Lisebet: Ever rising part 2!

Turning to Tabitha, Evonleigh smiles. "He's quite good at it! And the play is coming along well enough. Opening day is soon. At least we know our lines... with several first time actors in the group, that may be the best I can hope for! But they do beautifully in rehearsal -- it's just a matter of the real thing. Stage fright is a troubling phenomenon, and you never know when it will strike." She grins at the announcement of the dance, and steps away so Tabitha can find her groom to dance with, and she moves back toward Aethan. "The ocean is wider than a canvas, it's true," she tells him, patting his shoulder. "And I never did listen very well."

Tabitha is overheard praising Silas: Hawkwin! Always Soaring

Tabitha is overheard praising Bedivere: Hawkwin! Always Soaring

Monique leans up to press a kiss to Michael's cheek, leaving a stain of carmine behind, and then the Greenmarch is slipping out of the hall in high spirits.

"...Thanks," Quintin tells Harlan, dubious. He glances over at Lisebet and asks, "That was horrible, wasn't it?"

Monique has left the Ashford Banquet Section 3.

Kit, the grey fox, Primus, First of Monique's Assistants, 1 Greenmarch Guard, Tertius, Third of Monique's Assistants, Quartus, Fourth of Monique's Assistants leave, following Monique.

Lisebet squeezes Harlan's fingers, twining her smaller ones with his, and she grins at Quintin. "It could use a little adjustment, cousin," she says gently.

Pharamond checked dexterity + performance at difficulty 25, rolling 2 higher.

Tabitha checked dexterity + performance at difficulty 25, rolling 33 higher.

Pharamond grins and walks up to Tabitha and he smiles to Evonleigh. "I need to steal her for a moment." And so he walks Tabitha out to the dance floor and pulls her to her feet, as the band starts up and the pair start to dance. It's a more complicated dance that looks like they've practiced a bit, but the two have their own style that blends well. Pharamond dances to show Tabitha off, doing the steps without trying to mess up, and that dress and decorated with the jewels of the day and with all the fun, the two manage to pull it off and with what is likely to be expected of the pair, Pharamond doing his best to keep up with Tabitha's style, and her finding new ways to stretch him past his smoewhat comfortable life thusfar.

Thesarin has left the Ashford Banquet Section 2.

Thesarin gives Mia a short grin, and one of his big slow shrugs. "...a times. But it's in good fun. A fine start for the happy couple." He looks toward Silas and Bedivere, and gives the pair a nod. "Well done, the both o' you."

Quintin sighs, nodding to Lisebet. "Duly noted." He examines the pin in his hand.

"Food and drinks are available as people wish, and all are encouraged to dance, to socialize, and to mingle. House Ashford thanks you for joining in the celebration of this happy union of the Lady Tabitha Ashford and Lady Pharamond Ash..." And the Herald just hangs his head. "You all know who they are." He walks off to the side...

Harlan grins towards Quintin and says "Juuuuuust a bit to the left." He grins.

Silas happily accepts the prizes and lets his partner do the hugging. He retrieves his son so the bride can properly dance, and spends the opportunity watching the lovely couple and eating the rest of the food still on his plate. The toddler gets a piece of fruit or two. He inclines his head to the Count and Countess Riven and offers them a nod. "Thank you, though I rather enjoyed hearing everyone else around me. We were efficient, but bot quite as entertaining!"

Mia offers a sharp nod -- first to Silas and then to his son, as if intending to include the toddler in the formality. Perhaps she thought it would make the small boy laugh. "There's a good deal to be said for quick and efficient victories, Lord Commander. I hope that we see more of them in the days to come."

Bedivere and Cabbit settle and watch the newlywed couple, each one panning their respective gaze in a simultaneous, synchronous fashion to keep track of the whirling dance. He briefly peeks to Thesarin and Mia, "Thank you. It is good to see you again, both of you."

With a Cyril handed back to the nearest doting Whitehawk, Tabitha allows herself to be pulled to her feet and moved across the dancefloor. Yoink! With a glittering smile to her husband, she joins in the dance, careful not to muss up the gorgeous dress she's wearing. The jewelry she wears glints in the light, emeralds twinkling. Natural ability at dancing is augmented by the craftsmanship of the finery she's wearing, and her steps are light and graceful. She looks sideways to the Herald, however, quirking up an eyebrow before tolerantly and kindly smiling to him as he slinks off. Then she leans closer to Pharamond and mutters something, as the couple circle to the side of the floor so that others might take the opportunity to dance as well.

Michael manages to find his way back towards Mia and Thesarin, hands clasping around the buckle of his belt. "So." But other people are here as well. Gaze jumps between the small group and he isn't the one who has to breach the seal of happy words. "It should be. Marquis Rymarr has a solid strategy to peel the banners from Grayreeve's main forces."

Tabitha mutters, "... ... just call you ... Lady?"

The baron's smile fades a hint at Mia's retort. Cyril makes a noise at Mia, but it denotes curiosity. This is a new person! "Indeed, entertainment means little where it counts." He nods to his uncle, and the commander of his armies. "We will be ready for what is to come."

"Aye." Thesarin looks rather less festive for a moment, giving another slow nod. He looks toward Silas, and then toward Bedivere. "We'll need talk soon. The both o' you. A time for grimmer matters." He gives a low grunt, and a nod toward Michael. "This here's a happy time."

A heavy sigh escapes her as she realizes she's turned the entire tide of the conversation with one comment. Ohh, Mia. What have you done? "Speak to Lord Jyri, if you would, Lord Bisland. He came to see me yesterday, and I believe it would be best to include him in all of your plans. Until then, to brighter and better topics, hmmm?" Like Cyril! Oh, look! There's a small child to fuss over and distract everyone. How terribly convenient.

If Evonleigh was expecting an argument from Aethan at her last words, she will not get one -- no she will not. He does, however, eye her with a little smile still on his face, his eyebrows raising slightly. //Pointedly// not agreeing with her, apparently. Of course, after a moment he just lets out a little huff, and says, "Hopefully we won't run into anything you need to listen to me for on the trip." It's said dryly, though, since there will obviously be things she needs to listen to on the trip.

Michael suddenly grins huge and wide towards Mia. "Yes. Yes. I will definitely need to do that. Lord Jyri. I have a very special job for him. You know. Keep it quiet please." Then proceeds to immediately not keep it quiet. "I'm going to send Lord Jyri to the palace to paint King Alaric. Or have him meet Lord Jyri somewhere. And not tell Lord Jyri who is coming."

Rhiannon gets up, walks over to Pharamond and Tabitha. She bows to the couple and congratulates them with a smile and a salute and then she turns and tries to nudge her friend out.

"See, I was simply performing to entertain everyone," Evonleigh says brightly at Silas' comment, grinning over at Aethan. Not that she was to silly in her antics, her efforts simply not quite accurate. Aethan's remarks earn a huff of a laugh from her. "I think if it's a life or death situation I may be more inclined to listen. I was not in danger of dying in this game -- though Duke Harlan may have come close," she says, gray-blue eyes sparkling.

People are fed and offered drinks until the last guest leaves. There is plenty of food, plenty of drinks, and in proper Tabitha fashion, sweets a'plenty as well. Later on a font of melted cheese with different breads and things to dip is brought out as a snack for those who have stayed into the night time hours, and the Forest Hall is kept as is, celebration remaining, until the morning when the staff will begin the exhausting task of cleaning up. There may or may not be a posting for a new Herald as well. (Probably not...but he deserves some razzing after tonight's performance).

Rhiannon has left the Ashford Banquet Section 1.

Cadern has left the Ashford Banquet Section 1.

Sandor, the Tree Scout Captain, Nibbles, the Ashford Tree Squirrel, Cadern leave, following Rhiannon.

Pharamond checked dexterity + athletics at difficulty 20, rolling 16 higher.

Silas slants his gaze towards Michael when he relays his plans for Lord Jyri, the newest Whitehawk to the fold. "That's terrible. I approve." He looks up at Evonleigh and smirks again. "You managed to be entertaining -and- do well. But I expected nothing less."

To the Rivens, Bedivere says, "I do want to thank you for your works on the Twinbridge University, where both my children currently attend classes there. Also, thank you for the tutoring you helped set up even before then, too. Certainly, we can speak about those matters in the near future." says he, whilst continually petting the lap cat with his only hand. He keeps watching the impressive moves out there on the dance floor, too.

Lisebet checked charm + performance at difficulty 15, rolling 39 higher.

Lisebet checked charm + performance at difficulty 25, rolling 33 higher.

Thesarin lets out a short burst of laughter and gives Michael a nod. "Well done, then. Reckon it'll do him well." He gives another nod, and looks toward Bedivere with a grunt and a faint smile. "Credit to the Countess at that. Her work and leading, near the lot of it."

Pharamond hops up briefly and steps onto a chair, letting his foot rest on the seat, and the other foot on the back of the chair as it tilts and falls towards a table and Pharamond hops up onto the edge of the table and calls out. "BEFORE YOU ALL GO!" His voice booms just a bit and he smiles. "Lady Tabitha, who has now waited too long to realize the error of her ways, and myself who has known all along how lucky he is," he says teasingly, "Want to say a few words of thanks. First of all, to all of you for attending and being part of not just today but our lives. Baron Whitehawk for his potent negotiating skills and for ignoring my grey hairs in allowing me to wed the lovely artist of my dreams. And of course, to the Duke and Duchess of Ashford for welcoming my beloved into our home and allowing us to celebrate here. To you all, thank you so much." He raises a glass to all.

Pharamond is overheard praising Silas.

Pharamond is overheard praising Lisebet.

Pharamond is overheard praising Harlan.

Pharamond is overheard praising Tabitha.

Harlan moves to stand, offering his hand towards Lisebet. Dancing time, yes?"

Ian looks up after sending the poor messenger on his way. "Not so easy to tell people what to do when you can't curse them out when they screw up," he observes with a hint of a wry, knowing smile.

Lisebet gets to her feet, keeping her fingers in Harlan's as he stands, so that he might be helping her just a little, but it's not obvious. As Pharamond makes a speech, she pauses, and then says, "Truthfully, we are very pleased to see you both so happy, and to welcome Tabitha to our extended family. I've no doubt that she will find this family warm, welcoming and encouraging, just as I have done. I echo Lord Pharamond's sentiments. Thank you all for coming. And now it's time to dance."

"Hopefully," Aethan replies, still with a little smile. "People usually do. Though not always." He looks over at his brother as though to confirm that's true, before starting over to sit down at the table where he was again, reaching for the glass to water to take a sip.

Ian's words, though, get a little snort, and he reaches over as though to cuff his brother on the shoulder, though he doesn't look like he's hitting //hard//. Not that soft, maybe, but not hard.

"Next you're going to be stuffing hay down the back of the poor man's dress, Michael," Mia intones dryly and somehow, some way, the Countess addressing him by only his first name seems so very, very much worse than being 'Lord Bisland'. Are his ears out of reach? He'd best hope so. But for the moment, she simply shakes her head at him and turns to Bedivere, expression brightening at the mention of the university. "Several of your nieces were kind enough to help in the fundraising, and have their portraits hanging in Founders Hall even now. I hope it will make your children feel a bit more at home, to know that even with their family many miles away, they're not so very far from the kindness and generosity of their kin."

Harlan smiles towards Pharamond and Tabitha, agreeing with Lisebet, before he takes her in his arms, and leads her in... well, it's a more sedate dance. He's definitely being perhaps a bit cautious in the dance, but that's fine, he's more occupied with the woman in his arms, and not how he looks.

With a widening of eyes and a gasp, Tabitha watches her husband hop up onto the chair with all the vigour of a man half his age. There's a slight wince plastered across her face too which seems to blatantly broadcast: 'pack that in before you break your neck, you tipsy man' -- but nonetheless, she keeps a smile fixed in place. The smile warms at the speech, though, and she raises a glass of her own in toast to the room. "Yes, thank you, all of you. I wish I was better with words, then I could tell you how happy and touched I am. But I really am. So happy, and so looking forward to the future." To Lisebet and Harlan she nods, her expression warm as she lifts her glass again. "Ever Rising." Then to the Whitehawks, "Always Soaring." Then when the Duke and Duchess take the floor, she moves back to Pharamond's side, and pecks a kiss fondly on his cheek.

Silas blinks when Pharamond compliments his negotiating skills. "That's a new one, but thank you, Lord and Lady Ashford!" He tips his glass their way. "Can't ask for a better cousin-in-law! And this is one of the best receptions I've been to." He catches the conversation about the university. "I may be sending this one there, one day," he lifts Cyril's chubby arms. "And I'm glad Jaufrey has a distraction from all his scheming to finally best Michael."

Tabitha also waves to the other Ashford's giggling with joy as she sips at her glass of white Mercier wine.

Ian coughs out what might be a laugh and doesn't really do anything to dodge getting cuffed by Aethan. He doesn't look like he was hit hard enough for it to hurt. But he's taken direct hits from giant swords that didn't look like they were hard enough to hurt, so that's not really a great gauge to go by.

Quintin is liking this cheese and bread dipping thing, and so is lingering there. He tends to look stern by default, which is not helping him look approachable. The arrow pin has been attached to his coat.

Harlan may be being cautious, but Lisebet loves to dance, and it shows! She's whirling, twirling and showing off her dress as she lets the music and the steps of the dance take her off into a joyful moment or three.

"Hear, hear." Thesarin nods toward Pharamond, and moves back beside his wife, to place a hand back on her shoulder. "And it's well, Baron. Can be hoped he'll take well to learning, in his years ahead."

Because he has Cabbit on his lap, Bedivere remains seated but dips his head in a slow, symbolic bow of sorts to Mia with a follow-up nod Thesarin's way. "Certainly, I hope so, too. I apologize that I was not available to help to begin with, but if there is ever a lul in military needs, if you ever need a substitute teacher, I may be able to temporarily help in that way." Then, "Yes, Ever Rising. Always Soaring!" he speaks up in response to Tabitha.

The antics between the Kennex brothers makes Evonleigh smirk, but it turns to a softer smile as she watches the wedded couple. Eventually she sighs and shakes off that reverie, murmuring somethign to Aethan.

"Failing that, I've discoverd that books are quite useful for clobbering people about the head, or so my own children have taught me." Mia's lips purse. She gives Silas a very serious look. "Once you've more than two, they go a bit feral and start roaming the hall like a wild pack. I recommend hiring a small army of nannies." Another sharp nod. This is important advice that she's giving, clearly.

Pharamond hops down and he begins to make his way about with Tabitha, giving thank you's and the like. The party will go on but it is probably no surprise that the newly married couple would make their way out at some point, as there are other wedding traditions that need be honored. They linger near the bar however as Pharamond refills her wine and gets himself his own glass before he leans down and whispers quietly to Tabitha while they have a moment in between people coming by

Silas looks almost frightened at Mia. "Really? We have a -lot- of halls..." He offers Cyril another piece of fruit. "Shepherd will get one of them, after a certain age. Given how the Duke seems to parent, perhaps I really should consider dog-riding lessons."

Quintin takes a bit of bread with a generous helping of melted cheese back over toward the table he vacated, veering toward Ian and settling down nearby. "Lord Ian, are you able to give some pointers for unarmed combat, I wonder?"

Aethan just shakes his head as he leans back, though he does still have a little smile on his face, so he must still be amused by the whole thing. Or at least somewhat amused -- the smile's not //that// big. Whatever Evonleigh murmurs to him has him nodding, though, and he stands up then, turning to his brother. "Ian," he says, then inclines his head to Quintin, "Lord Quintin. I'll see you soon." He offers his arm to Evonleigh then, perhaps to make the rounds to say their goodbyes.

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