Laurent Family Shindig
June 6, 2019, 9 p.m.
Arx - Ward of House Valardin - Laurent Manse - Stables and Fields
Comments and Log
In theory, it's supposed to be spring any day now. ANY. DAY. But tell that to the weather. There's driving snow and it's piling up in thick drifts up against the side of the manse and along all of the fences. A stand has been set up with hot chocolate and chocolate souffles and warm cookies. There's also a couple of pots with flowers in them haphazardly set up by the tables. But they're being rapidly filled with snow. At the moment, Cristoph is standing there staring at them with a frown on his face. "I don't think this is going to work out," he comments to Norwood who is probably nearby. He points to the wall, "Someone put that creepy painting of Aunt Aida out in the yard again."
The children of the house are out and about, with Eadric and Annalise playing with the servants kids and being pullled around in a sleigh by the car pony. Everyone is well and truly bundled up because it's super freaking cold outside.
2 House Lyonesse Adept Guards, 1 Lyonesse Trained Guards arrive, following Demura.
Miri, a skillful appraiser arrives, following Wren.
6 Redoubt Buccaneers, Bengalo, the sneaky black cat, Luna, the sweet, studious assistant, Wren arrive, following Carita.
2 Novice Keaton Huntsmen, River, a juvenile Oakhaven bloodhound, Barf, the Bog Dog arrive, following Amari.
Looking a bit out of place, Llyr arrives on the grounds looking a little hasitant as he scans the area. He is well covered for the weather, s o lingering doesn't seem to be an issue for him.
Rian, the overworked, lovelorn seamstress arrives, following Vincenzo.
Don't call attention to him Cristoph! Norwood saw Eddard over there stomping around and he's just making himself inconspicuous over there behind a slowly growing pile of snow. There's a glance at that art, "Didn't you sell it once, and then they decided they didn't want it?"
Mabelle has been here the whole time. She eyes the creepy painting and Cristoph and the Jael and then points out to Cristoph, "I see nothing sprouting from the ground, Cousin". She smiles to those present and those arriving. Greeting them here and there.
Jael makes her way across the fields, arm in arm with Prince Tyren. It's a good thing they're both rather tall, given the depth of snow they're having to slog through. The hot cocoa better be worth is. She's well bundled up against the weather and let's hope he is too. "Gods almighty, who keeps leaving Aunt Aida out here?" she exclaims in annoyance as she notices the painting. "Someone /bought/ it for us so we wouldn't have to let it go, Uncle Norwood."
And in comes the Keaton crew. This time with /ponies/. The three eldest Keaton children are each perched atop a fell pony, looking like miniature versions of Reigna's Artshall destrier. In the lead is Lord Aeryn Squall, a hand raised, "Oaken! Get!" What is he pointing at? Please let it be no one's pet. "Charge!" He kicks the flanks of his slightly pudgy pony who looks less than inclined to charge anywhere. But Aeryn don't care. He's having a blast! Kata and Talis are following after him. Reigna and Kael are not far behind them, and Reigna says, "The groom has trained Deathhoof deserves a raise."
"I brought plants!" Cristoph says to Mabelle defensively, pointing at the pots that are rapidly filling with snow. "It's not my fault that it decided to snow heavily." As for the painting, "Well, yeah. They also decided they didn't want that couch and a bunch of other stuff which I'm kind of disappointed they didn't take." Then Jael and Tyren show up, he clears his throat. "I mean, we're really glad we got to keep the painting."
Vincenzo weaves his way through the staff and guests to enter where the shindig is at. While wrapped up like a bundle with a purple scarf as a bow around his neck and face, he does carry a small polished wooden box cradled in one hand.
Kedehern found himself with a nice plate of meats and cheeses, and some point, though he swore he could smell hot cocoa somewhere. Still, for now, he's sort of holing up off on his own, just people watching at the moment.
Sorrel arrives with a well bundled baby who is almost old enough to walk but not quite balanced on her hip. Her Artshall baby, born at a different Laurent shindig. Tiny Princess Lilah Thrax has storm blue eyes and black ringlets and fat rosy cheeks. Sorrel heads over towards the Laurents with a grin on her face, her hood keeping the snow out of her eyes while Lilah stares at everything, particularly the Keaton pony.
Amari is part of the Keaton crew, honest she is! She even arrives with them, almost, nearly. Okay, she obviously dallied somewhere and has yet to catch up to the procession of Keatons and ponies.
Eddard threads through the rapidly arriving people to stand next to Norwood. Parchment in his grip, auburn eyebrows a furrow and words being sputtered furiously at the Baron.
Shaking his head, Kael observes the trio of kidlets (the baby evidently had to stay at Keaton Hall...for now) as they make their way to the Laurent crew. Do not worry, this is going to work out just fine. Children nobility friendships are important things after all. Still, whatever the case, Kael moves forward with his wife on his arm and is heading toward the Laurent hosts. Ah, but there is Amari. When she does catch up Kael is offering her a little chin-up and a comment of, "Time to say hello, mm?" Which that is evidently the point, for when he gets in vague proximity of Cristoph he greets him with a low, deep bow.
Renault, the fluffiest Velenosan cat, Athenais, a dreamy apprentice Whisper arrive, following Selene.
"Squall, knees in," Jael shouts to the eldest Keaton child, before turning to Sorrel and gazing at her youngest with delight. "Oh, look at her, a perfect little Laurent! She takes after me." That's not how it works, Jael.
Hearing Mabelle allows Llyr to focus on her. He smiles some and makes his way in that direction, stopping before where she is, "Lady Mabelle...I had hoped to run into you here...hoping you were not on another wild chase."
"Hello, Princess Sorrel!" Cristoph calls when he spots her with the child. "Is that your Artshall baby? She must almost be a year old." While he'll forget the birthdays of pretty much everyone else, the duke won't forget the baby that decided to be born at the spring fete. "Keatons!" he waves to Kael, Reigna and the children. Though when Eddard storms up all angry, he frowns at him. "Lord Eddard, go be angry somewhere else. This is my house and my party."
Mabelle gets closer to the table in dire need of something warm to drink. She keeps track, or tries to, of those arriving, flashing a welcoming smile to the Lord Llyr Nightgold, chuckling, "I am done running, my ankle is still sore. How are you?", a wiggle of her fingers toward Amari. She gathers a cup of hot chocolate and notes to Cristoph, "Plants, that will get us..", she notices Vincenzo and smiles to him, "Ah, Master Villente. I managed to get plants. That is about it" she gives him a sheepish smile turning to greet Sorrel as well, "Princess, long time!"
"Yes, we are all so... happy." Norwood drawls with so much heavy feeling of not-meaning-his-words-at-all about the painting. He would say more except his nephew is appearing at his shoulder and waving a paper at him. Eddard's elbow is taken and they'll just steer this away from Cristoph who is sure to be inundated soon with well-wishers. Also he just got told to go away, Norwood is an expert in walking people away from places. He's had practice.
"Is this the painting of the strange green woman?" Tyren asks Jael at the painting discussion, his attention briefly wandering to the children in attendance. When his attention drifts, it settles on Norwood, and he offers the man an incline of his head. "Baron Norwood, it's good to see you again. I think the last time I saw you, it was at your wedding," that would also be the first time that Tyren met Norwood, but who's counting.
Kedehern watches, munching on a piece of Colby Jack as Eddard is steered away from the Duke. His head tilts, curious, and then he's moving. But to Eddard, and Norwood, no. He's moving to where the cocoa is.
"This is indeed my Arshall baby, Princess Lilah, named for Silver, and trying to walk but falling on her bottom mostly," Sorrel replies brightly as the little girl makes curious grabby hands at the pony, then at Jael. "She is nearly a year old, but not quite yet. She's a spring baby, after all."
Carita's arrival, wrapped in a fur-lined woolen cloak that seems to sparkle light the night sky, is rarely quiet one. Most notably as the newest haggling genius accompanies her tonight, Wren. The pair are walking and talking amicably and as they arrive and the Countess weaves her way through to find familiar faces, waving to those on her way to Cristoph. Dipping a curtsey, she thrusts more booze in his direction, "For you, Duke Laurent," she glances around and tilts her head at Eddard as he's admonished before she turns her attention on Sorrel, "Your Highness is looking lovely this evening, as always."
Only a few words exchanged. Eddard's jaw unsets and he murmurs back towards his uncle. Etiquette, and poise Eddard. Etiquette and poise. "Duke Cristoph. I am sure I can contain myself, and this matter for another time. Would you grant me a pardon for the evening?"
Obeying the shouted directions, Aeryn Squall puts his knees in and is rewarded with a burst of speed from Deathhoof. "Thank you Auntie Jael!" This is shouted as he trots by, heading towards the other children. "EADRIC! THIS IS DEATHHOOF!" The trio of ponies go over to where the other children are playing, ghosted after by a groom in Keaton colors.
Reigna lifts a hand to Cristoph, a smile on her face, "My liege, fantastic party." When Amari arrives, she gets a bright smile from Reigna, "Amari, my dear you look ravishing as always."
In the background, Eadric is now standing on top of the cart pony and shaking a wooden sword. "Chaaaaaarge!" he shouts back once he's spotted the Keaton children. Everything is fine over there. Don't worry. Meanwhile, "She's adorable." Cristoph flashes the baby a smile and a silly face that people practiced around babies are apt to make. Then he has a bottle of booze being shoved into his hands, he looks confused and glances around. "Countess Carita! Ah, thank you! Is this more rum?" Eddard's question is a met a look and a nod. "Yes. Behave, have some hot chocolate."
The Radiant Emeritus might be in defiance of the winter given her quintessentially springtime attire, although the heavier cloak in plain violet keeps her from freezing overly much. Not until she has something warm to drink and make up for it. Selene moves at no great pace through the crowd. Carita makes a starry impression that she comfortably follows upon, stars and moon-pale hair helpful. "Countess Darkwater, good evening," shall be said when in earshot. There is a great deal of curtseying to be done, but it's first to Cristoph when she finds him in their midst. A dip and she descends deeply before standing anew. "Duke Cristoph, this is a remarkable showing. A credit to you and your house."
Jael wiggles her fingers at the baby. "Lilah Shay, of course. Oh, spring. I'm starting to miss it. I'm a spring baby myself." She gleams a smile at Sorrel, then nods to Tyren. "It's not a strange woman, it's Aunt Aida and I don't know why everyone gets so upset about her. I'm going to start locking the frame down or something. It's a family heirloom and it shouldn't be outside, that's probably how it went all green to begin with." But Aida can enjoy the party at least.
The Marquessa of Lyonesse and her wonderful sister have arrived together. The duo walk side by side one another with one another. The Marquessa is dressed in a stunning golden low-cut dress that draws attention to her figure and sparkles due to shimmering stones being set in it. In truth, she feels out of place wearing such a gown and would have probably rather have been in armor, that is probably the reason she wears a scowl on her face, at least until someone greets her and she has to force a smile. Her hair is pinned up neatly with a few strands of bronzed locks stylishly pulled to hang loose, her blue eyes are enshrined by sooty lashes and dark liner, her lips are painted a soft shade of orange as well.
Anabelle, bundled up in her black cloak with the Lyonesse lion on the back, the fur lining keeping her warm. Her hair is a masterpiece of tiny little braids interwoven with artfully toussled waves of honeyed blonde. Where her cloak parts with her movement, a gown of heron blue peeks out, sparkling where light hits it. She has a distinctly smug look on her red lips as she cast a sidelong look at her elder sister in that dress.
Oh, there's Mabelle. Amari lifts a hand in greeting, and quick steps to finally catch up to the other Keatons in attendance after Kael's upnod at her. A curious glance chases Norwood and Eddard, but as they seem to be having words, she doesn't try to get their attention. Instead, she offers Cristoph a polite smile and curtsey. "Duke Cristoph. I wish I had written your poem from the tournament down. It should be engraved on something and given to someone." At Reigna's compliment she flashes a smile, "As do you."
Llyr nods to Mabelle and looks down, Can't tell...though the cold might be doing it good?" He hmms a little, "Not doing too poorly...looking to keep occupied and remembering why I left the mountains." He holds his hand out to let some snow land in it. He looks about to those gathered and lifts a hand to wave to Sorrel, "Your Highness."
Bundled up to keep toasty warm, Wren continues apace with the esteemed Darkwater Countess as they make their way through the gathering throng. "Pity that lord Asriel couldn't make it out tonight. He is tired of the cold," she comments idly to Carita just before they reach the Honey Duke. There is a half-bow, a hand rising to keep her hood in place before she is back upright. "A pleasure to see you again, my lord," Wren says to Cristoph, a flash of a grin given before she nods and gives more of those half-bows to the other nobles gathered near him, side-stepping after a moment as to not be in the way and turning her attention toward the others in attendance.
Norwood looks pained with the children and how they're playing right now. So pained. Don't mind him as he wanders in their general direction. He's a little bit like a nursemaid there to set Eadric back on his feet when he lands on his face - because that's probably going to happen sooner rather than later.
"Maybe she moved herself. Perhaps she likes the snow," suggests Tyren to Jael, before he looks back to Sorrel's little one. He has to remove his hand from Jael's in order to wiggle fingers at the child, but he does it successfully! Then, he looks back to Jael. "Where is the hot chocolate we were promised, hmm?"
Vincenzo smiles underneath the scarf to Mabelle, "I'm sure the plants are excellent even if winter keeps hanging on tighter than a Scholar gripping a quill. That perfume you're wearing? Absolutely beautiful. Ah, and here." as he passes over the wooden box. "I wasn't sure if gifts were in order."
When the Keatons are acknowledged, that seems to be fine and well enough for Kael. He rises up from his bow and takes a deep breath, sliding his arm from his wife's so that he can instead fold it around her shoulders and draw her further in. It is rather chilly out there, you know. He casts a look toward the kiddos and when Eadric also announces his charge there is a definite chest puff from the Keaton Marquis.
Snuggling in against Kael's side, Reigna's eyes are drawn to the children playing and she cannot help but laugh, "Oh those lot." She looks over to where Jael is and sends a wave towards Jael, Tyren and Sorrel before looking to Kael and asking, "Have you met Prince Tyren yet?"
"It is rather green, isn't it?" Sorrel observes, considering the painting for a moment. Lilah giggles delightedly at Jael and makes grabby hands in her direction, babbling something in baby talk that means nothing but is nonetheless charming. Espying Reigna, Sorrel waves to her cheerfully. "Cousin! Marquessa!" she calls brightly, then glances back to Tyren. "I don't think we've been properly introduced yet. I'm Princess Sorrel Thrax nee Wyrmguard, and this is Lilah Thrax who was born at Arshall and delivered by Marquessa Reigna to much rejoicing. And you're right about the hot chocolate. We do need some."
Jael drops a cozy sofa nook.
Mabelle cups her drink to warm her hands she smiles to Llyr, "Well keeping busy is very important and I'm pleased you were able to make it. Please indulge - there are dreamy souffles, Cristoph baked", she lies through her teeth. A wide smile spreads over her face ask Vincenzo approaches her, if there is anything that battles her affection for cookies, its her affection for compliments, "Why thank you, Vincenzo, I am pleased you could make it. Dont look at the painting, its haunting". She gathers the wooden box and peeks at its contents and assures him, "Oh we like gifts. Thank you, you are very kind".
Jael drops a set of chairs and benches.
Kedehern has joined the a cozy sofa nook.
Jael drops pond benches.
"I told you that dress would look good on you," Anabelle leans in to say to Demura with a giggle as they enter the gathering, nostrils flaring at the first smell of hot chocolate. Blue grey eyes scan the crowds for anyone she recognizes. Eddard is given a flutter of her fingers as a wave in his direction, before the middle Lyonesse goes off in search of warming refreshments.
Carita's hand to Wren's back as she steps aside, "No, not tonight. Tonight I bring you the finest whiskey I've ever had, made by House Kennex's Lady Zoey." She dips her head and shuffles to the side as more people begin to crowd the poor host, just in time to bump into Selene. "Radiant Emeritus, how lovely to see you again. Have you met one of the newest members of House Darkwater? Mistress Wren, this is Selene Whisper."
"You are adorable." Baby Lilah gets the gentlest nose boop. "Hot chocolate is this way," Jael proclaims, leading the charge or at least volunteering to, while a troop of burly Laurent servants haul in some exta pieces of furniture for the guests. Who would have guessed a blizzard party would be so popular? "She doesn't," she adds confidently to Tyren, who does have to follow her if he's going to insist on holding her hand.
Eventually, Kedehern gets his cocoa, and then makes his way to the couch, because really, every tack room needed a nice couch. Still just people watching, but now with warm cocoa. He takes a sip, and looks from the children at play, to the door, and frowns a bit.
"It's the varnish," Cristoph assures Sorrel quickly. "I swear that it isn't anything /else/." Because apparently it being something else is a frequent concern! He flashes a smile at Wren when she arrives and waves briefly. "That is a shame that he couldn't make it. Then again, my wife isn't about either and I really thought they'd get on. Ah, well. Thank you for coming! There's hot chocolate and cookies and things like that. You can also watch my son give himself a concussion if Baron Norwood doesn't get out there fast enough. Eadric, get down!" A wave is given to Anabelle and Demura as they make their grand entrance before his attention is pulled by Selene. "Whisper Selene! I'm glad you wre able to make it." When Zoey's name is mentioned, he ahhhhs. "My cousin!"
Norwood checked dexterity + athletics at difficulty 20, rolling 44 higher.
"Ana...I'm seriously cutting your allowance in half." Demura says quietly back to her sister, "Look at how low cut this is!" she fusses at her little sister but as quietly as she can. Her cornflower blue orbs dance about the room from person to person, a friendly nod and a forced, though cheerful smile given to anyone who looks at her. The Marquessa then spots an old familiar face, "Princess Sorrel!" she calls out with with a wave.
"I've heard many a good thing about you, Princess Sorrel. I do believe we're both scholars," Tyren notes to the Princess, offering her a faint but polite smile. Then, he's dragged by Jael over to the hot chocolate, how rude! Or, really, he seems to go along very willingly that-a-way, making conversation with Sorrel as he goes, "I quite enjoy your songs. The Metallic ones." In case she's forgotten her own music.
Vincenzo says to Mabelle, "I'll take your word and refrain from looking at the painting, my lady. Enjoy the party!" as he makes his way to get out of the way.
Cristoph has joined the a cozy sofa nook.
Bump is a near thing. Selene goes stock still, balanced incongruously upon iris leaves and petals wrapped around her toes. Evidently her garden disregards the basic laws of physics and the seasons. Her smile never falters, and the gentle widening marks a flare of delight. "Always a delight to be in your company, Countess. I regret not to have the pleasure of an introduction yet." Nodding to Wren, she turns to the other woman. "Enchanted to make your acquaintance, Mistress Wren. Please, call me Selene if you like. Have you been in the city long?" Her gaze turns to Cristoph again and she grins briefly to him. "I am delighted to be here. I shall have to smuggle some of your cocoa out."
Norwood was waiting for Eadric to fall, not because he's good at telling the future, but because some things are just going to happen. Right when Eadric starts to fall Norwood is there to sweep the Laurent heir up and settle him on his shoulder. "One day," Norwood says to the kid as he gets hauled away from the chances of him ending his life soon, "You and I are going to have to have the same conversation I have had with both your aunt and your father. Prince Tyren," Tyren gets roped into this conversation, "You have been informed that the Laurents all grow up reckless?"
When Reigna is mentioning Prince Tyren, there is a glance cast back toward his wife from Kael. "I have not," he answers her plainly enough. He straightens somewhat from his more leisurely pose, offering his arm more formally to his wife so that they are not traveling in an untoward fashion should that be the direction that they go. Given the exuberant greeting that Sorrel makes toward Reigna, Kael is offering the Princess a nod by way of greeting. His gaze is dropping soon enough to a particular point. You know, that point where Jael and Tyren are holding hands. Before he starts to size up the scholarly prince.
"Oh, I'm sure it is," Sorrel agrees with Cristoph enthusiastically even as Jael boops the baby's nose, causing the baby to cross her eyes and giggle. And then Prince Tyren is talking to her and she grins. "If the Duke would like, perhaps later I'll sing something, then," she offers brightly, following along towards the hot chocolate. "Ah, Marquessa Demura! There's to be hot chocolate! Come join us!" she calls cheerfully.
Reigna offers Sorrel a smile, "Hello there cousin," She smiles at the sight of the baby and she says, "Is that little Princess Lilah? Oh, how fantastic! She's doing well?" There is a brightness when speaking of the baby and Reigna says, "You handled the birth very well." She watches Tyren being dragged off and then says, "Well, there he is. He seems properly in tow. I think that means she likes him." This is all said in a faux sotto voce, loud enough to carry despite sounding like a whisper. Reigna slips her arm through Kael's and winks to Sorrel, though she angles herself and Kael to follow Tyren and Jael. "Prince Tyren! May I introduce you to my husband, Marquis Kael Keaton of Oakhaven and the Sword of Sanctum."
"Not all of us," Kedehern offers to Norwood and Tyren from his spot on the couch. "Just Edmund, and his own kids, from what my father told me," as he finally stands, moving towards the Baron.
"The pleasure is absolutely all mine," Wren says to Cristoph as her attention is drawn back to the Duke. "My patron is hard to pull out into the cold, so surely another time, my lord." At the press of Carita's hand at her back, Wren murmurs a polite departure from the duke, and she flashes the countess a toothy grin as they begin to move, only to pause once more as there is an accidental collision! "My countess, are you alright?" she gasps, moving to make sure it is just a bump. Selene gets looked at next, concern in those gray-blue eyes of Wren's. "And you, lady? Unhurt?" Once she's seen they are both fine, she straightens up and gives a bow to Selene. "All is fair, so please, simply 'Wren,'" she says as she comes up from that bow. "Recently returned to the city, actually. I've spent my years in and out of port, but home is home." An eye strays to Carita again, just needing to be certain all is well.
Mabelle observe, overwhelmed, the abundance of Laurents that she has yet to see since she arrived in the city, where have there been hiding? She was sure they are all back in Artshall. She targets them one by one, starting with Kedehern which gains the weird greeting of, "Cousi...ncle. How have you been? I think I've not seen you since I was... that age", she points at Cristoph's reckless little boy running around.
Tyren does not fail to notice that he seems to have grown an entourage. There are proper pleasantries to Kael and Reigna both, though the latter gets something of a smile. "Marquessa, it's nice to see you again. I've not had the chance to visit since I've come back to the City. And Marquis," this to Kael of course. "It is a pleasure to meet you." Kedehern gets a nod from his chime-in, before there's a low chuckle over to Norwood. "I've heard stories already," he says.
With the initial rush of introductions and greetings out of the way, Cristoph takes up a deep breath and collapses onto one of the benches that was brought out for such an occasion. Snow is sticking to him and so he brushes it off a bit absently. "That's only because you've been removed for so long, Kedehern. You'll have a proper round of reckless behaviour out of you yet!" he calls over to his uncle cheerfully.
Norwood has joined the a cozy sofa nook.
"Does she like riding? I have a little sling that I take Annalise around in," Jael asks/tells Sorrel, before adding, "You should definitely sing once everyone's settled in." With the family and friends and fealty handling their introductions to her betrothed just fine without her, Jael sets herself to the task of fixing up a mug of cocoa. There's cinnamon and whipped cream and chocolate shavings involved, and a cookie just dumped right on in there. "Pr...Tyren, what do you want in yours?"
Carita's laughter lifts at Wren's fussing, though her main concern seems to be if her toes landed on those of Selene's, it seems the pair stopped short of any real damage done. "I'm quite alright, thank you. It'd take a stronger blow to turn me to dust," and here she winks and adds, "but just barely." Here a mildly dramatic sigh as her attention lifts to Selene again, "The fate of we cream puffs." Her attention raises at the mention of hot chocolate with interest.
"Hardly hurt, unless it might be sharing the light," Selene replies, her enthusiasm in absolutely no way serious at all. Her mahogany bangs slant over her face and she brushes her fingers along to gather them behind her ear. The curiously brilliant crescent moon pins taking the place of hairsticks shine in floating glory. To Wren, "Thank you for asking, though. You are well traveled, then?" A brief moment noting Sorrel and baby, she offers a quick dip to the bard. But conversation will come at other than shouting distance. She wouldn't live up well to the name 'Whisper' by hollaring loud. They have someone in that role already. "Surely you both have some lovely plans come spring, no? And we shall always be safe floating around together. Should take Athenais and bring back three mugs of cocoa, by chance?"
"Have you?" Norwood asks with the tone that implies that there is NO WAY that Tyren has heard enough stories. "Which ones have you heard? I wouldn't want to repeat the ones, though there are one or two about Jael you should know. Mostly so you are ready for your own children to do the same thing." Cristoph calling out about Kedehern getting in on this risky-business earns him level stare.
"Uh-huh," murmurs Kael back to his wife, nodding toward her. Still, he has straightened once they are approaching proximity of Jael and Tyren. "Lady Jael," Kael acknowledges first and foremost before bowing his head toward the Laurent. Thereafter his focus is shifting toward the Valardin Prince again. "Well met," he says in response to the other man. There is a dip of his head once more, humble for all that sizing up earlier. When his chin lifts he simply says a cryptic, "Lady Jael is the Name Witness of our heir, Lord Aeryn Squall." Another nod to the man and he is turning to survey the shindig's various partygoers.
Mabelle has joined the a cozy sofa nook.
"She does! I have a sling for her that I should have worn to make carrying her less of a trouble, but she likes to take rides on my mare," Sorrel replies to Jael, trying to keep up with the conversation. "With Prince Luca dead, I should ask Duke Cristoph if he'd like to be a Salt Parent to Princess Lilah here." She takes a cup of hot chocolate and moves to take a seat with the baby in her lap.
Demura begins to move toward where Sorrel and company are gathered, but then she halts and spins about in a graceful half twirl to try and locate her sister among the crowd. "Ana, come join us!" she calls out toward her Anabelle with a bright smile, apparently willing to at least for now forgive her of her sins. And turning with a soldiers snap the Marquessa makes her way closer to Sorrel. "It has been so long how are you?" she inquires in a light voice while drawing up a manicured brow. The next moment finds her arms folding behind her back as if she were standing in parade rest, this has the intended consequence of pushing her chest forward a bit...She will get her sister for this, oh yes she will!
Vincenzo is watching the happenings and he heads over to the servants to ask for three empty mugs. With a smiled thanks, he heads over to where some unblemished snow is at and he sets the three mugs so they're somewhat in a staggered line. Taking large steps away from them, he then walks to stomp a line before he gestures Mabelle over. "Alright, how about a game? You have five chances with five snowballs to land a ball in a mug. Just have to stand behind this line, make your snowball and toss it carefully to land in a mug."
Kedehern turns as he hears Mabelle's voice, and... He looks momentarily socially horrified as he tries to put a name to her. He didn't have his Sister-in-Law's flashcards, unlike Cristoph and Kedehern, it seems. Eventually, a look of inspiration seems to strike him. "...Mabelle, yes? Please, just Kedehern..." He seems almost uncomfortable, people of more or less the same age referring to him that way. "Well enough," he shares with her. "Troubles seem hopefully settled for the most part by the College of Agriculture, for the moment, at least." A smile and a nod to Tyren, and then "Ah, right... We haven't met, yet. Kedehern Laurent, Your Highness." Looking back to Cristoph, "I certainly hope not," with a brief laugh, and then "Whatever would I tell the good Baron, here?" gesturing to Norwood.
"It is very nice seeing you again, Prince Tyren. I was very happy to hear the news. Jael was one of my first, and closest friends that I made when I first came to Arx. She has been a constant source of support and friendship. And as Kael mentioned, is a Name Witness to our heir." Reigna smiles up at Kael and kisses his cheek impulsively.
Carita has joined the pond benches.
Sorrel has joined the a cozy sofa nook.
Selene has joined the pond benches.
Demura has joined the a cozy sofa nook.
Wren has joined the pond benches.
Cristoph checked dexterity + athletics at difficulty 15, rolling 20 higher.
Tyren's far too composed to side-eye Jael at all the crap she dunks into her hot chocolate, but there is the subtlest raising of his brows when she gets to the cookie. "I think just plain would be fine," he remarks, having to extract his hand off of Jael in order to take a cup of his own. Though, on second thought, he adds a bit of whipped cream. He turns afterward to the group. To Norwood, there's a quiet chuckle. "I heard the one of the bear. Though I've reassurances that she has no desire to be one any longer. I don't mind the running away to the woods, I've done that once or twice myself. I just would rather not join any woodland animal groups," it's mostly a joke. Then, to Reigna and Kael, there's a faint smile. "I was a bit surprised but pleased when the Duke sent his missive. I had only met Lady Jael once prior to that, at your wedding I believe. But she is quite lovely and intelligent."
Mabelle travels toward Vincenzo and his line of mugs, she invites one of the children and creates a sub game for them, 'Form Auntie Mabelle some snowballs'. While they do that she smiles to Kedehern, "Forgive me. Your brother was like a father to me, after losing mine in youth. So I was not quite sure how to address you. We should have some tea sometime, catch up". Meanwhile the obedient child of Cristoph hands her two snowballs. She pets his head and lets him run along. Alright then.
"You tell the good Baron that you're sorry for giving him more gray hairs. I hear that he names each one after a different Laurent that he has to rescue," Cristoph calls over in that same cheerful voice. He leans forward on the bench and begins to scoop snow up from the ground. He very casually begins to pack it into a perfect snowball. After checking out his handiwork, he cocks his arm back and lobs the ball through the air until it crashes lightly against Jael's back.
"My feet take me, and I go," Wren says with a crinkle of her nose and another quiet flash of a grin as she steps to the side and allows for Selene and Carita to proceed her toward their joint destination. "Merchant by birth and by trade but a part of me would be made into a liar if I did not admit I like the traveling part quite a great deal more at times." She follows in suit after the pair, only pausing to dust some snow off her shoulders.
"This is why you shouldn't fall off things - if I let you go, you won't, right?" Norwood, trying to extract a promise from Eadric. Except that he knows very well it's not a promise that the boy is going to KEEP when Norwood lets him loose to go throw himself face first into some snow. Back to Tyren, "I have grand hopes that I will be adding no gray hairs on your account Prince Tyren." That is totally a shot at Cristoph and all the Laurent/Clements (yes, Eddard too), who are making his hair gray.
"So I shouldn't talk about how I almost ended up at the bottom of a pit filled with clockwork automatons?" Eddard speaks up suddenly, speaking of gray hairs. He'll glance amongst them all. "Whitepeak was astonishing."
"....." Norwood slowly turns to just stare at Eddard. Stare.
"Life's been quite exciting, I admit," Sorrel tells Demura. "This is my youngest, Lilah. I've been working on more Metallics research when I haven't been doing diplomatic work in the Mourning Isles." She sips her hot chocolate as the baby squirms in her lap, flailing to get down and play in the snow a bit. "Ooh, Lord Eddard, I'd be interested in hearing about Whitepeak. I've only read about it. Do tell."
Jael checked dexterity + athletics at difficulty 15, rolling 27 higher.
Kedehern ponders there, and then "Now one has to wonder if Laurents who are married will also give you gray hairs. Well, I suppose we'll find out together, won't we?" Dear old dad-in-law-to-be.
After a full count of Norwood's grey hair caused by her and seems to be losing to Eddard and then some.
Anabelle has joined the a cozy sofa nook.
Reigna tilts her head as she looks to Tyren and shakes her head, "Surely not, your highness. Kael and I did not really have a wedding." She looks up at Kael, grinning, "Would you call it a wedding? It was more of an oath taking and contract signing." She doesn't seem sad about this, but rather, fondly nostalgic.
Selene weaves a path through the crowd to find the hot chocolate. Her blonde apprentice follows through the bubbling upwellings of conversation, and the serene Radiant Emeritus nods in passing. Three mugs and two pairs of hands make a better mathematical equation than managing all three together. Managing them is easy enough after they are poured out, and her gaze moves among the crowd with interest. Picking up the mugs, she sways her way back to Wren. Not without overlooking Eddard. "A pit? How thrilling!" This follows Sorrel's reply. But the heat of the mugs is considerable. She continues to bring them to Wren and Carita.
It takes carb-loading to keep up this level of awesome, okay? Jael is showing some high color in her cheeks as she and Tyren become the focus of a lot of conversation about children and bears and intelligence but surely it's the weather. Or the snowball her brother just whacked her with. Or the anger over the snowball her brother just whacked her with. Abandoning the cocoa, she stoops to gather up a handful of snow and winds up because It. Is. On. It smacks him on the ear.
Mabelle stares at Kedehern surprisedly, "You're marrying Eddard? Well, thats an interesting turn of events". While the game has not begun and Mabelle still standing rather close to the nook, she innocently drops a snow ball in Cristoph's lap. Cant miss when you're that close. She then calls Eadric and complains to him, "I'm all out of balls again, your father stole them from me".
Tyren clears his throat. "I apologize, Marquessa, I misspoke. I meant Baron Norwood's wedding." It's been a long day. And his betrothed is getting smacked by snowballs! He is just going to step a bit to the side and sip at his hot chocolate.
Anabelle appears next to Demura with a cup of hot chocolate now in her hands, complete with an obscene amount of whipped cream and some kind of chocolate shavings on tip, "You have got to try this, it's so yummy." When she goes for another sip, a dab of whipped cream remains on the tip of her button nose, completely unaware of this fact. As Demura stands at rest and her posture does all kinds of things in that dress, Ana hides a giggle behind her mug.
"Lady Jael is most excellent," says Kael, the words somewhat at odds with the general serious nature of the Marquis - but make no mistake, they are stated in absolute sincerity. There is no doubting that. Ah, and see, there's a snowball hitting Jael's back. Kael, quite seriously, is wrapping his arms around his wife and neatly sidestepping the area as a whole by lifting her away lest they take fire. "You could have been at ours as well, Prince Tyren. I was *horribly* distracted." Yes, this is more offered to his wife than the Prince, but still.
Kedehern looks to Mabelle, and his mouth opens. Closes. Opens again. Closes once more. Finally, "No. No, not Eddard. That... That -would- be an interesting turn of events, but no, I'm marrying his step-daughter, Lady Shae Keaton, not his nephew," he clarifies there.
"Lady Shae Keaton is my step-daughter? Who am I married to now?" Eddrad is quick to pipe in, and abandon worrying Norwood fiercely. For the moment.
"It was the worst day. Or so I thought at the time." Again, horrible words, and yet Reigna is looking up at Kael with such obvious fondness, she almost doesn't notice when he is lifting her up to safety. She does not look away from her husband, "I was so afraid. I had never met him before, you see. In fact, when he walked in... I could not have told you which one he was. Oh... but when Kael stepped forward, I admit my belly did flips." Seems as though Reigna is getting rather lost in the past.
Norwood checked dexterity + athletics at difficulty 15, rolling 38 higher.
Norwood is over here shaking his head. So much shaking of his head. But that's okay. There is snow on the ground and the Laurents have already started. So he'll bend down, pick up some snow of his own, and very seriously throw it at Eddard's head.
Cristoph checked dexterity + athletics at difficulty 15, rolling 34 higher.
Eddard checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 48, rolling 38 lower.
Mabelle packs a few other snowballs with Eadric and gives the already energetic boy a plate with chocolates as reward. She lifts her gaze to Kedehern and chuckles at him, "Well that sounds most fortunate", she eyes Eddard for a moment before she begins throwing snowballs at the laid mugs
Mabelle checked dexterity + athletics at difficulty 15, rolling 0 higher.
"Marquessa Demura," Cristoph says to her very seriously as a snowball smacks him in the ear. He maintains his composure even as another snowball is dropped in his lap. "How are you?" he wonders, as he flicks snow away from his face. He continues the conversation, while patting together another couple of snowballs. He tosses one back over at his sister, though he tries not to aim at her *face* and the other is for Mabelle. Though Mabelle's is thrown a lot softer. "I hope you're trying the hot chocolate."
Eddard was too busy being /oh so sassy/ to see the whirling pile of snow aimed in his direction. It connects, condenses, explodes violently to buffet his auburn hair past his head and cover it with a dusting of scattered snow. Then he topples.
And as the snow starts flinging, Kedehern just sort of... Backs up, and takes another drink at his cocoa. Yep.
At least the Marquis Keaton is taking pity and not going to subject people to sweet stories. For you see, he is nodding toward the Lady Laurent and Valardin Prince before starting to steer his wife toward the chairs yonder. Somewhere more private. Somewhere away from flying snowballs.
Mabelle checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 15, rolling 2 higher.
Kael has joined the a set of chairs and benches.
Reigna has joined the a set of chairs and benches.
Jael's attention is dragged between Kael's kind words and Reigna's remeniscences(sp?) and her brother throwing yet another snowball at her. When the projectile hits, her eyes flash and her nostrils flare. "Please excuse me a moment," she says with a little curtsy...before stomping through the snow to Cristoph and smashing a handful of snow right in his face.
Settled down on the pond bench with Selene and Wren, Carita seems to delight when she makes first Wren burst out laughing, then Selene wider smile. Her smile lifts, her oceanic eyes scanning those that might have noticed before she turns her attention back on the ladies she's sat with. Selene appears with cocoa, and the cup is eagerly accepted to curl her fingers around for warmth.
Eddard checked stamina + survival at difficulty 40, rolling 18 lower.
Mabelle chucks a few snowballs at the laid glasses, missing every single one of her throws. Good thing her livelyhood is not dependant on accuracy. She almost manages to dodge Cristoph's payback though, and ends up with half a ball against her shoulder, sighing at him.
"Sometimes our worst days can lead to our best," Tyren says with a small smile for the couple. After, he cocks his head to Jael, brows lifting, and watches her stride across the courtyard to smack snow in Cristoph's face. He'll just be over here, sipping at his hot chocolate. "Lady Jael is quite lovely," he repeats quietly.
One of Amari's Huntsmen appears and has a quiet word with her where she's stopped to admire snow, or maybe just fell asleep standing up. She turns her head to listen carefully, gives a nod and moves to follow him out. It's not a fire, because she doesn't run, but there's a vague sense of urgency in the speed of her stride and the mild look of concern on her face. "Well, what is it they've treed?"
As she settles herself next to her sister on the couch, Anabelle blinks and crosses her eyes to get a look at the bit of whipped cream on her nose before wiping it off on the back of her hand. All the snowballs flying do make her blink in surprise and tightens her grip on her mug just in case. A few whispers are exchanged with her sister, giggling out loud at her last and shaking her head. "Do I look like I have it?" she asks.
2 Novice Keaton Huntsmen, River, a juvenile Oakhaven bloodhound, Barf, the Bog Dog leave, following Amari.
When the adults start flinging snow at one another, you know the children are not far behind. The Keaton trio have apparently started their tactical unit training (Though Talis seems to have abandoned any sort of order for the more direct berserker approach) and are beginning an assault on Eadric's cart.
Reigna doesn't seem to mind the sequestering, shaking her head as she talks quietly with Kael.
Cristoph holds his hand in front of his face when he replies to Sorrel, because he expects retaliation. Which comes swiftly, in the face form of Jael smashing snow directly against him. The hand takes most of the abuse and he's able to shake the snow off. This would be terms for WAR but instead, he flicks some droplets off and smiles at his sister before graciously (and aggravating in the way brothers can be aggravating) replies, "You win." Then he turns once more to Sorrel and says, "Yes, absolutely. I'll do this thing."
The eyes of Demura widen as she watches a snowball strike Cristoph while they are mid conversation, immediately she is looking for its source and when she realizes where it came from she grins, "I am well, I have yet to try the hot chocolate, but that will change." Then Jael is smashing snow in the Duke's face, to her sister she looks hoping to find solace there. "I mean...I have no idea what you could be hiding!" she scowls again. "If someone has to take the baby inside, I can do that." to Sorrel.
Norwood watches Eddard fall and then nods his head firmly. This is the right way to do this thing. But Carita's seeking out his eye and so he'll move over towards her. "Countess. I appologize for not responding to your missive. Would you be wildly offended if I was to turn down your offer of a drink and instead request tea?"
Norwood has left the a cozy sofa nook.
Jael watches, jaw set, as Cristoph is about to deflect most of her assault. Yes, the children of Duke Edmund Laurent are total grownups. There's a moment of tension where she might just push him right off the bench...but she doesn't. "Damned right I win," she retort, brushing the snow off on her heavy skirts and stalking back towards the cocoa booth to retrieve her drink and take up a spot next to Tyren, inspecting the state of her cookie. It's sludge. "It's a nice party," she says amicably.
"Excellent," Sorrel says delightedly to Cristoph. "You'll almost certainly be more responsible about it than Prince Luca, who nonetheless took it very seriously. But please, no follies. They're deadly." She finally lets the baby crawl out of her lap, and the little girl cruises on unsteady feet, holding onto the bench the whole time, over to Demura, before falling on her bottom in the snow.
Tyren takes about a half-step closer to Jael, setting his cup aside so that he can retrieve a new cookie for her. "It is," he agrees, holding the cookie up and then dunking it into her cocoa. He takes a bite, and then offers her the rest with the thinnest of smiles. "You should have snuck up on him. I bet he would've never seen you coming."
"Oh, no. I don't think you'll ever catch me anywhere near a folly," Cristoph replies to Sorrel with a crooked smile. He glances over to his sister as she begins to stomp away and just shakes his head. His face is now incredibly cold, he dries it off with a napkin that he produces from his pocket.
Norwood hears that and swings his head around to Stare at Cristoph. Really? Never near a folly?
Eventually, Kedehern finishes his cocoa, and starts to head out to who knows where in this awful weather. As he does, "You should have put it down the back of his shirt!" he calls to Jael. And out he heads.
"I've been told that I'm too young for follies," Sorrel replies with a laugh as she lets her daughter get away from her. There are plenty of responsible adults with children at this party, after all, and Lilah is unlikely to get far. "But I do have a bad tendency to end up in shardhavens, trying to save something precious."
Demura watches the child move toward her with a tenderness rarely seen on the warrior Marquessa's features. When Lilah falls on her bottom into the snow she leans down to scoop her up, "There there," she whispers while dusting the snow from the little one and drawing her to sit on her lap. "I loathe the idea of folly." she too replies to Sorrel. "Ana, your dress is very nice for a dress." she compliments her sister with a coy smile.
Mabelle seems to be sleeping on her feet, so she decides to step back to her room, not before announcing, "COOKIE PARTY NEXT WEEK! DONT FORGET!" as she wiggles her fingers and starts making her exit.
"Watch your waistlines!" sings Selene in parting as Mabelle heads out. "Or wear something that forgives them!"
Jael cocks an eyebrow at Tyren...on the one hand he got her a new cookie, on the other hand, it has a bite out of it. "My thanks," she replies somewhat pertly, plucking it from his fingers. "True, but I've never been very good at the sneaking." She lifts a hand to Kedehern. "Next time, Uncle!"
Carita's attention lifts from her comical conversation with Wren and Selene. Clearing her throat past laughter as she shakes her head Norwood's way. "Tea would be lovely, Baron Norwood." Her smile curls a little impishly. "Tea is a drink, after all." Though when his attention shifts so too do hers, back to the ladies, she'd been talking with.
Kedehern has left the a cozy sofa nook.
A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Jael before departing.
A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Cristoph before departing.
Mabelle has left the a cozy sofa nook.
"I had to make sure it was suitable to give to you," Tyren says to Jael about the bite he takes, looking the picture of innocence as he brushes the crumbs off his hand. He takes his cup back afterward and takes a longer drink. "Do you want to go sit with your brother?" he looks over to the comfy looking sofa.
A messenger comes through, Cristoph reads it an abruptly the good mood he was in begins to falter. He frowns severely and glances around, eyes settling on Selene and squinting. "Excuse me, Princess Sorrel. Marquessa Demura and Lady Anabelle." He walks straight over to the whisper and holds out a missive. "Would you help me with this please?"
Anabelle gives Demura a long look out of the corner of her eye as she interacts with the little girl, perfectly sculpted brows lifting a bit in surprise before she breaks into giggles at the compliment she gives her of her dress. "Coming from you, that means a lot. And you clean up quite well yourself. I should get you to try on some more of my dresses, you might actually get to like them." Just as she was settling in for another sip of her cocoa, she catches sight of someone she knows and with a grin to Demura, she's off to socialize and fade into the background.
There was probably more chatter to talk about, but when Cristoph gets all serious Norwood does too. His arms come up and fold over his chest as he watches his Duke.
Anabelle has left the a cozy sofa nook.
Jean, 1 House Lyonesse Adept Guards, 1 Lyonesse Trained Guards leave, following Anabelle.
There's an overdone Lyceum joke here but Jael doesn't make it; instead she makes a great show of turning the cookie over and inspecting it before taking a bite herself. "No, I want to-" She's cut off when the messenger who just delivered something to Cristoph brings her a missive as well. She holds the cookie delicately between her teeth so she can open the note and scan it. She lets out a sigh, crams the parchment into a pocket and removes the cookie. "How does Duke Arn know how to ruin a perty he isn't even at?"
Painbow, a militant pygmy goat arrives, delivering a message to Selene before departing.
"You've met Duke Arn, Lady Jael," Sorrel points out wryly, shaking her head slightly. "What has he done this time?" Lilah is busy exploring Demura's face, since the Marquessa is holding her, and she seems quite curious about new people, not scared at all.
Cristoph's attention pulls away Selene from the conversation with Wren and Carita. What has been quite light-hearted requires a pause. She excuses herself softly and hands her mug off to her apprentice, answering the gravitational pull of the Duke. She moves in his direction, dipping again in another curtsy. The missive is taken from him. "Of course. A moment, if I may?" Those dark eyes scan the lines laid out before her. Her expression does not change, though she nods to Jael. "It would be a good time for a second cookie."
The missive is handed over and Cristoph waits patiently, though with a serious cloud hanging over his normally sunny disposition. He frowns over at Jael. "I would be completely flabbergasted if this was actually from Arn."
"Is everything all right?" Tyren frowns over to Jael, though he doesn't look at the missive that's delivered. He instead volleys a look from her, to Cristoph, and back to Jael again, brows lifting.
A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Cristoph before departing.
Painbow, a militant pygmy goat arrives, delivering a message to Jael before departing.
Selene is rather quick reading. She gently refolds the letter along its crease lines and passes it back to Cristoph when finished.
Painbow, a militant pygmy goat arrives, delivering a message to Selene before departing.
Jael makes a very, very ladylike little snorting noise in the back of her throat at Sorrel's comment. "I'm just impressed at his skill, that's all. Telmar wants to be sure we are dealing with our problem vassals which we /are/." She ruffles a hand through her snow-speckled hair and glances at Cristoph. "No? Hmm. Well, there's no help for it. I need a second cookie." The Laurent Voice glimmers a faint smile at Selene, though she doesn't go for it yet. Instead she leans against Tyren just a smidge, and polishes off the first cookie.
Cristoph hands over another letter. "I find this all incredibly bizarre, Whisper Selene. As I've written to Duke Arn recently about the trouble with High Hill and offered him troops in support of whatever he needed to have done. We're also in extensive negotiations with both of these houses, which Lady Lilia would know, if she had ever bothered to speak to us at all. Or to her father."
A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Cristoph before departing.
Demura doesn't seem to mind Lilah exploring her face, she instead sticks her tongue out at the child and tickles her relentlessly clearly happy to devote most of her attention to the little girl in her lap right now than anything else. "I'm just going to take you home with me and your mother can come and get you later!" she teases.
Tyren sets his cup down as Jael comes to lean, reaching behind to sneak another cookie off the table. This one, he does not take a bite of, and instead holds it out to Jael. Whenever she takes it, it leaves him free to lay his hand on the small of her back. "Sounds like a frustrating situation," he's not very helpful.
There could be a second cookie to be called for but Selene has yet to eat even one. "House Laurent and House Keaton have actively engaged Whisper House throughout the winter. We remain well-appraised on the undertakings from Threerivers to the Lycene border." She nods to Jael and then considers Cristoph's words for a moment. Another letter to read, which does not dent her composure. "Her Highness, Princess Marisol has been commendable in her arrangements, sufficiently to please House Malvici. Nor have I heard any complaint from other Lycene houses for the handling of matters thus far. Should anyone require me to speak to this effect, I will openly do so. People are hardly sitting still. I fear I have gone through at least two good pairs of shoes so far." A tragedy!
Over at some secluded chairs, Kael currently with his arm wrapped around his wife's shoulder and she is resting her head against his own. Maybe her eyes are closed for a cat nap, given the exceptional fatigue that seems prevalent throughout the Keatons. Kael's attention has been yonder on his trio of kidless, to ensure that no tired shenanigans arise. Still, when that cloud seems to settle over the group yonder, his focus is shifting that-a-way and dark brows furrow. Ah, and there it is, Reigna's eyes open and they exchange a few quiet words.
Sorrel tilts her head to one side, a little puzzled at the kerfluffle. "This is quite bizarre," she agrees, sitting back a bit to watch Demura play with her baby. Lilah is full of giggles, unlike the adults.
What a way to end a party. Cristoph is listening to Selene, even as he's snapping his fingers for Rupert to show up with the paper and quill. The assistant looks... concerned. But he does it and while standing there, the duke begins to jot something out. He shows it to Selene before he demands any copies are made and sent out everywhere.
Painbow, a militant pygmy goat arrives, delivering a message to Selene before departing.
Reigna gets to her feet and holds a hand out to her husband, looking over towards the group gathered around Cristoph, a worried expression on her face.
Norwood has gotten rather statuesque again. Sometimes he looks where Cristoph looks, but otherwise, just watching Cristoph.
Demura draws her blue eyes away from Lilah for a moment to listen to what is going on and look from person to person. "I believe I missed something." she whispers softly to Sorrel, "My Duke seems troubled."
Luckily Jael is a fan of cookies, especially when she's under duress, and Tyren isn't stuck holding it forever. Where does she even put them all? She blows out a breath, visible in the chill air. "I'm going to take Aunt Aida inside. Help me out?" Apparently 'help me out' is code for 'try to keep up' because she tucks the painting under one arm and, with a few quiet farewells, heads towards the Manse in a determined fashion.
Jael takes a creepy painting of a green-tinted lady.
Tyren's only got the one hand, so lending Jael a hand would mean giving up having his arm around her. So she's gonna have to carry that picture all by herself. She seems more than capable. "Good evening, everyone," he says.
When Reigna is holding her hand out to him, Kael is looking up toward her with a hint of amusement. His lips twitch in a mild manner and he places his hand in hers, but rises quite under his own power. Tired, yes, but so tired he is not. His arm is offered more formally to his wife and he travels toward the group near Cristoph. No crowding from the Marquis, he simply quirks a brow and tilts his head should he make eye contact with the man. He'll wait and stay or move on, whatever reaction is more appropriate, it seems.
While Cristoph stands there, staring off in obvious annoyance, he starts to realize people are watching him. He clears his throat and steps out of the way, "Carry on, please. I'll just be over here." There's a bit of a wave of his hand and then he clasps them in front of him.
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