Starlight Steelsilk Bidding
Oct. 11, 2019, 7 p.m.
Arx - Ward of the Compact - Elegant Impressions - Show Room
Comments and Log
Floofkins, a blue colorpoint kitten, 1 Inverno Ensign, 1 Inverno Captain, Cornelius, a studious looking attendant arrive, following Tyche.
Stefano, an inconspicuous Lycene bodyguard, Carmela, a gleaming dusken-feathered crow, Ambra, a plain-faced Lycene scribe, Tyche arrive, following Mirella.
Serenade, a lovely nightingale arrives, following Calandra.
Floofkins, a blue colorpoint kitten have been dismissed.
As the sunsets on Arx, the inside of Elegant Impressions' show room comes to life. The candlelit chandeliers bounce off crystal and mirrors, off soft velvet couches and gilded chairs. A table has been set with red and white wine glasses, alongside trays of cream puffs and mushroom tarts and little beef skewers. Everything has been polished and shimmers, with a dark navy mannequin in the middle of the room baring the steelsilk gown to be auctioned, exceptional in its craftsmanship even where the alaricite and epiphanite of its collar and belt catch the light. And in the corner, the proprietor sits, clutching a glass of wine with white knuckles and a nervous expression, dressed in plain grey seatouched wool, not greeting guests as she should. But, that is why she hired Whispers. Fortunato is here, in an official capacity, after all.
Ondine, a red-breasted sparrowhawk, 2 Halfshav skilled veteran guards arrive, following Brianna.
Fortunato takes care of the greetings. He is more serviceable than fanciful, but does the job. He waits for the flow of visitors to slow - he seems to be working up to a speech.
Arcadia arrived a little earlier and has oohed and ahhed over the gown. Firm in her knowledge that she can't afford anything like that, she moves towards the back to drink the wine and enjoy the food. Yep. That's what she's here for. Free food.
Aureth doesn't interrupt Fortunato as he mingles, but it's clearly an effort of will not to disrupt him.
Niklas offers Fortunato a deep nod more respectful than he gives most of his fellow nobles as he steps into the show room of Edible Arrangements, Princess Sabella Grayson on his arm. He's about to offer a verbal greeting to Fortunato, realizes he's not a hundred percent certain what the artist whisper's name is these days, and instead delivers a pretty impressive fumble with, "Nice to greet you!" Then leads Sabella over to look at the gown. "Whatever else anyone may say about it, Luca would have worn the hell out of that while stabbing pirates left and right."
Michael made a wrong turn somewhere in the Compact and just started following the crowd. Because auctions have good food and lovely alcohol, he steps in alllll by his lonesome and is struck momentarily by the singular item being auctioned. "Oh." Before he is in the way and moves along.
Berenice steps into the showroom with a whisper of smoky seasilk, and there might be some who saw this particular outfit for sale in this very shop before it was snatched up for her. Iridescite and stygian glint throughout the corsetted gown, and mirrorsilver gleams at the collar. Her dark eyes find the steelsilk gown on display, and there's a distinctly /predatory/ gleam there.
Alarissa slips in, bypassing whisper greeting lines and ghosting about the room like others. Layers to obscure her left side, she is making her way to get a look at the dress this evening.
Sure, it's Cardian, but it's /fashion/. And who better to show up to an auction for such a fine piece than a Whisper? Garbed in the moonlight silks of a similar garment, Calandra mingles among the crowd that steadily fill the shop, hanging particularly close to the mannequin holding the gown meant to be auctioned tonight. "Absolutely gorgeous.." She hums softly to herself while eyeing it, her delicate, finely manicured fingers idly twirling a glass of wine as she waits for the bidding to begin.
Talia's gaze catches on Calandra, and the nervous seamstress lights up with a smile for the first time. She starts to rise, stops, hesitates, and then just kind of waves awkwardly to the Whisper. She also smiles at Berenice, recognizing her work, and waves to her. Finally, with a bite of her lip, she does rise and make her way over to the Lycene princess. "Princess Berenice, correct?" She then kind of trips over her next words, "I am sorry I haven't had a chance to reply to your letter. I've been so caught up in producing this gown, I haven't had much time for anything else."
Fortunato ceases his mingling. He steps to the center to speak. “I am here as a Whisper, haha, a very new one." Fortunato lowers his chin slightly. "I am also here in behalf of Talia, a woman I barely know who was all the same a friend of my mother, and displays here a similar gift for clothiery. This dress on auction is -- inspired by my mother's work. If you will forgive me a digression." He takes a deep breath. "Before her death, my mother was approached by Larissa Whisper to contribute to a fashion show. My mother's vision outstripped her funding - she approached the then Lady Dawn with an offer. She would make two dresses. One for the Whisper auction and one for the lady herself, if she would sponsor both of them. For the lady, she spun a gown of sunlight, in dawnstone and gold. For the auction, she spun a gown of moonlight, in duskstone and silver. Lady Juliet won the moonlight gown, and Lady Dawn? Well, she has vanished, and the sunlit gown vanished with her. Now, to the present day." He gestures to Talia. "In honor of her friend, my mother, Talia has completed the sky collection with a third gown, one of starlight, in steelsilk, epiphanite, and alaricite. Oh, it glitters like a clear night! I introduce Talia and this wonderful gown as part of a tradition, and as its own wonderful thing. Whoever wins this gown will have gained a true work of art." He bows. “Please enjoy the bidding.”
A cream puff on her hand, caught in a delicate napkin, Zara contemplates the mannequin's gown. She leans forward, just slightly -- SLIGHTLY; she's not gonna creampuff the dress before it's even purchased -- to study the craftsmanship: there are no complaints to judge by the thoughtful and satisfied appraisal of her expression. Her eyes lift, turning to others in the room with a nod here, there, also there oh, okay, she knows most of these people. It's Calandra she addresses as she studies the garment the Whisper is wearing, and then the gown on display. She leans forward with a quiet question.
Fortunato is overheard praising Talia.
Clad in an impeccably neat dress of blackberry-hued silk, Mirella arrives in the company of Tyche Inverno. Walking alongside said Lady, the smaller and darker-haired of the two petite women dips into the required curtsies to Fortunato (he being the one greeting guests) and also to any nobles she passes by. Her gair and posture are immaculate as she attends to these pleasantries -- it's a perfect show of mannerly correctness with every dip of her heels. With that all done, Mirella turns to face her liege in a graceful gait that sends crystalline glass earrings glittering as the blue teadrop beads shiver on their silver hooks. She whispers something to Tyche before Fortunato speaks, and then turns dark eyes with admiration towards the gown that is being described with such poetry. Ooooh. Shinies.
Brianna is tall and stately, wine in hand, examining the gown and the people watching. She catches sight of Arcadia and sashays over. "I don't think I can compete with the heavy hitters tonight, but I think it will be fun nevertheless. How is your little darling?"
Her laughter breaks up Sabella's envious look at the dress up on display, "He would have," she nods to Niklas, sparing the gown one last lingering look before picking up a creampuff from the table, "It's definitely lovely. I'm surprised Reese isn't here, but then she already has a whole outfit made of it..." She trails off, then says in a quieter voice, "Oh, it's starting, we should find a place to be!"
Arcadia notices Berenice and inhales deep. She glances at her own dress. Why oh why didn't she put on nice clothes this morning? She steals another glass of wine and tries to blend more into the wall so she can watch.
Obtaining a glass of pale wine, Aureth wanders amongst the assembled in trailing silver spider's silk accentuated with gold. The amount of silver and white he wears might even bring the silver in his hair into relief, brushed out as it is in a long fall, striking across his shoulderblades. "I shall definitely enjoy the bidding," he says, "in honor of our mother, and the true artistry in honor of Jayus that has gone into this bright and beautiful work."
That laughter, shrill and over the top, as if EVERYONE should hear it and be drawn to her halts Michael's pace and he turns in place. Eyes seeking, finding, looking and settling upon Sabella before eyes roll upwards with a scoffed sigh. "Just where to hide...Aha." The man talks to himself, threads himself through the crowds AWAY from the Grayson Princess towards Princess Zara Valardin.
Tyche is, indeed, in the company of Mirella! No one can dispute that, and the Countess of Inverno seems to be in a cheerful mood as she slips into the shop. Her attention goes first to the gown, and then to others gathered about. She smiles at Sabella, curtseying here and there to the assorted princes and princesses, including the Velenosa princess, and then she moves off to find a lovely place to observe and maybe even bid from. The whispered words of her companion are met with a warm laugh, and she nods, sharing something in return.
"A lovely history." Alarissa offers to Fortunato, a glance to the gown as she looks for a place much like Sabella, to go wait for the auction to start.
Talia flushes and moves towards the gown, clearing her throat. She makes a little shake of her head, before she announces: "I guess we'll start the bidding at 750,000. Is anyone willing to bid 750,000?"
Berenice's smile curves slow and warm as Talia approaches her. "Messere Talia, I must presume! What a pleasure to finally meet you in person after I've had the joy of purchasing more than one of your collections. Your work is /truly/ remarkable." Introductions quiet, however, as Fortunato steps up to make that introduction. She perhaps eyes Zara a bit warily for all that /creampuff-laden leaning/. But in truth, she is full of gracious smiles and graceful movements as she plucks up a drink. "I will certainly bid 750,000," she offers.
Jared, an overworked-looking, nervous Apprentice Whisper arrives, delivering a message to Talia before departing.
Brianna raises her hand. "Seven seventy-five," she bids.
"Eight hundred." Alarissa counters after Berenice with a bid.
Calandra really should be greeting the shop's owner, it's the Whisper-ly thing to do, but she got caught up with the dress. She isn't so blind as to see Talia's wave, however, and sends a lightweight lift of her hand back on the tail of a warm little smile. But her attention is caught by her patron, returning Zara's lean and murmuring back with a coy sort of smile. Afterwards she lifts chin to Fortunato and his opening speech, smile a touch somber, but serene as she speaks up. "A shame we could not have the other dress. I would love to complete the set." Because she is, in fact, wearing the Moonlight gown mentioned.
Aureth takes a swallow from his glass and tilts two fingers into the air with a lazy near-salute in his gesture. "900,000," he says.
Brianna pipes up again. "Nine fifty."
Niklas lifts a hand and offers a smile, "One million silver."
Talia has trouble keeping up with the influx of first bids, but her eyes catch on Aureth and she nods. "900,000." That's the latest bid.
And now-- It's not. Talia tips a chin to Niklas. "One million."
Off Mirella goes, following Tyche without fuss. Plucking wine from the table, the dark-haired Lycene gives it a subtle sniff (inhaling the bouquet, of course) and likewise provides one for her Inverno companion. Once they're out of the way, Mirella takes a sip of her drink, though not without a faint raise of her eyebrows as her lips touch on the rim of the glass. That's a lot of silver being thrown about. She leans over to Tyche again and murmurs something too quiet to be heard by anyone else.
"A million two" Alarissa speaks up.
Arcadia just stares at these bids. She mutters to herself mostly. "Who has that much money for a dress?"
Zara takes a bite of her creampuff that threatens -- it being a very full creampuff -- to send cream overflowing toward the gown. But -- no. Despite staring Berenice down, the dress is safe. She does not dibs. Nor it seems does she bid, saying something quietly to Michael after a word with Calandra.
Sabella's eyebrows go up immediately at the amount of silver being offered, then nearly chokes on her creampuff as Niklas bids, "Nik!" She quickly and daintily wipes up all the spit that caused.
Brianna bows out. She is no high lady or princess. She stands back, leaning against the wall.
"1.2 million for the High Lady of Thrax," Talia acknowledges. "Do I have 1.3?"
"1.3 million," Berenice bids.
Calandra lifts a hand, "1.5 million."
"1.5 million for the lovely lady in the gown of moonlight," Talia smiles at Calandra. "1.4?"
Alarissa lifts her right hand. 1.8 million"
Calandra raises her hand again smoothly. "2 million."
"Anyone with an even 2 million?" Talia says, biting her lip for even asking-- even as Calandra bids it.
Niklas takes a deep breath and blows it out with a plbplb, then looks to Sabella, "Okay, okay. I'll hold off on bidding more. It is winter, after all. I need a new look for a new season." He sniffs. "It's just so /fun/."
Michael is standing back with Princess Zara and her small gathering. Numbers are happening though and any consideration the Lord Bisland had for bidding has fallen immediately by the wayside as his eyebrows lift.
Sabella was raised correctly so her mouth doesn't drop open, but she watches the bidding like someone might a particularly back and forth spar. First one way then the other then back again, excitement flushing her cheeks pink, "I'd hate for you to be seen out and about in that," she grins at Niklas, nudging him with her elbow, "You're famous enough as it is. I'm glad we came, though, this seems completely ep--oh there's Michael!" She waves through the crowd at him.
"I guess now is the time to remind that I will take resources in lieu of silver, at 300 per. Anyone for 2.1 million?" Talia asks.
Ugarte have been dismissed.
Finishing off his glass in a long pull, Aureth says, "For this gown? Steelsilk and alaricite and epiphanite, so beautifully done, and people are complaining that the bidding is high? Please." He abandons the glass to hold up his hand. "2.1 million."
"Two point three" Alarissa calls out.
Mirella may perhaps have heard muttered Arcadia's words, or seen the stare the countess aimedtowards the dress, but the most subtle of nods and a small agreeing smile is sent the blonde woman's way.
"It seems the High Lady of Thrax will not be outbid. Unless someone will bid 2.4?" Talia questions.
"2.4." Calandra calls softly.
"2.4 is the current high bid," Talia merely states with a nod towards Calandra, not asking for more yet, but waiting.
There's a look to Calandra from Alarissa then back to Talia. 'Two.6" It's firmly spoken, her chin lifts just a little and her hand raised to indicate the bid.
Michael starts at his name, glancing away from smalltalk to glance back through the crowd. Then...lift a slow hand to return the wave of one Princess Sabella Grayson.
Tyche has not bid at all, so her unspoken threat of throwing silver never manifests. She watches as the women outbid one another again and again, quietly murmuring something to Mirella.
"I think we are seeing a bidding war between Princess Alarissa and Princess Jaenelle's proxy I would guess," Sabella says, grabbing onto Nik's arm and bouncing on her toes with a huge smile, "This is so exciting! Do you think that the tailor will make more with all her earnings?"
Calandra spares Alarissa a glance from the corner of her eye and smiles lightly. "3 million."
"Three point two." Alarissa fires back.
Berenice has notably stopped bidding. She is not pouting. Shut up.
Aureth is about to bid more, but as Calandra pushes the bidding past three million, he has to stop and think about it. He gestures to his assistant, and they are briefly in conference about things related to math.
"Three million heard," Talia says. "I-- Anyone bidding higher-- Oh, thank you, princess. 3.2 million."
Calandra's jaw sets subtly. "3.3"
'Three and five." Alarissa counters again, a glance to Aureth then to Talia.
Arcadia tells Sabella, "Maybe. I am waiting for Princess Berenice to continue bidding. I imagine she has millions upon millions to spend on this."
Niklas looks from Alarissa to Calandra, eyebrows raising as they go on. Then his eyes widen as if he's suddenly realizing something, gives a nod to absolutely nobody, and leans over to whisper something to his wife.
Talia flushes, and she says, "Three and a half million is the current high bid."
Unfortunately Calandra has to turn her head away when the bidding climbs, lowering hand.
"3.5 million going twice," Talia says, giving a small apologetic smile to Calandra as she lowers her hand.
Something that Michael says provokes Zara into speaking words just barely above the quiet hissing exchange of whispers: "--_tea_?" she says. So, you know. Whatever hush-hush whisper-whisper is going on over there it's exactly what you'd expect when one part is of the Oathlands.
Alarissa looks to Calandra, an apologetic look to the woman then to Aureth to see if the man will counter or not.
Sabella gives a dramatic and very fake sigh, "It appears I will not have a new dress to wear to the ball tonight. But that's all right! I will be on the lookout for where this one will debut, though. I can't wait to see it on Alarissa!" She beams a smile towards her cousin.
Calandra thinks better and lifts hr hand. "4 million."
Niklas clucks his tongue. "Perhaps she'll have Prince Victus wear it. He does seem to be expanding his wardrobe." The Calandra speaks up. "Ah, the Islands denied their fashionable prince."
Talia pauses, looking for a moment stunned, before she calls, "The current bid is at 4 million. Do I hear anything higher?"
"Four and one." Alarissa offers, smiling to Calandra.
Aureth takes the folio away from his assistant after a brief conversation, smiles faintly and shakes his head, vanishing it into his pocket. "Get me one of those cream puffs, will you?" he says, and Greguin starts weaving his suffering way through the people present to investigate dessert.
"I'd pay good money to see Victus in that gown," Brianna remarks to anyone listening
"4.1 million heard," Talia says with a quiet voice, almost a breath. She's not the best auctioneer.
"Four and five." Calandra smiles back to Alarissa in that polite, competative way.
Mirella's slooooowly sipping at her wine, eyes widening in subtle curiosity to see if the bids are going to spike up further. Excellent entertainment, this.
"I mean, how much would you pay?" Aureth asks of Brianna across the room with the cock of an eyebrow.
"Apparently so would Princess Alarissa," says Niklas in response to Brianna.
"4.5 heard. Do I hear any higher?" Talia asks of the room, even though she looks to Alarissa.
"I have never understood something so well as I understand these two bidding on that dress," Tyche remarks to Mirella with a grin, but still she does not step into the bidding pool.
"Not /that/ much," Brianna replies to Aureth, snickering into her wine glass at Niklas' comment.
Arcadia also sniggers at Brianna and Niklas's comments. "Imagine pirate hunting in it. He would be so much more fearsome."
"The Archduchess Regent of Velenosa bows to Mistress Calandra and we are both sure, that she shall be radiant in this dress and hope to see it at the Mirror Masquerade." Alarissa dips her head to Calandra in surrender before starting to head off to find something to drink.
"4.5 going twice," Talia confirms.
"I think I know exactly what you mean," says Mirella in reply to Tyche. The dark-haired Lycene flicks an amused smile at this, then lifts her wineglass by the stem in a silent toast to Alarissa's gracious surrender and Calandra's victory.
DOES THIS AFTER THE BIDS ARE CLOSED.
Berenice's brows sweep up at Alarissa identifying herself as Jaenelle's proxy. She takes a slow sip of her wine.
It's a good thing Zara ate that creampuff, because now her hands are free for a smatter of delicate applause as the tense back and forth of the auction concludes -- maybe? Yes? One concession. Is she applauding too early. That would be awkward.
Sabella also looks surprised, "Wait," she looks between Alarissa and Calandra, "I thought...well, this is in intrigue!" Her smile gets brighter, clearly loving it, "Who is bidding for whom?!"
Now that the bidding is over, Arcadia slips out, again trying to go unnoticed as she has taken the majority of cream puffs in hand.
Puff, a dainty yellow-green canary, Sir Jesmond the Giant leave, following Arcadia.
"4.5 sold," Talia ends the auction with, clearing her throat. "Thank you all for coming and for bidding. I never expected-- I was prepared to take a loss to have this gown out into the world, to perhaps bring some closure to Myrinda's legacy." She looks slightly to her left, at nothing in particular, with the flicker of a sad smile, before she says again, "Thank you all."
"You have done great honor to her memory, and created a beautiful work besides," Aureth says with a slight lift of his chin, smiling across to Talia even as Greguin brings him his dessert. He sidles over to congratulate Calandra in a lower voice.
"Perhaps, some months ago Sabella, it would have been my style. But I am afraid, that it is rather not this time." She tells her cousin, smiling at Talia's words. "I echo Father Aureth. A b beautiful work, and a great honor to her family."
With her victory secured, Calandra's dip to Alarissa is a gracious one, no flaunting or lording in the smooth bend at her waist. "My sincerest thanks, Your Highness. My luck to you when there's yet another fine gown." With that formality out of the way, she prides herself with a victory sip of her wine before Aureth is grabbing her ear and she dips her head to reply.
Glass of wine completed, Berenice is looking /mostly/ gracious. But that sort of -- perfectly over-composed gracious. "It was a true victory of artistry," she tells Talia. "Hopefully we'll be able to speak more soon." And with that, she is off. (To tantrum.)
Sabella gives Alarissa a smile, "There is nothing that you could not make spectacular, cousin. Then or now." She picks up a glass of white wine, looking around the shop, "I wish there were more things to bid on, all of this really has me wanting a new dress or three. Probably not at that price point. Although I wonder if Liara would agree to..." She trails off, then shakes her head, "Probably not. She's very practical when it comes to silver."
Benvolio, a beleaguered valet in search of a better job, 6 House Velenosa Guards leave, following Berenice.
With the bidding out of the way, Talia moves to get another glass of wine. The poor nervous tailor seems like she needs it. She catches Sabella's words, and she offers hesitantly, "I will likely put more collections to be auctioned, more modest ones, with the new auction house soon. I'd like to support other businesses in Arx."
Tyche's lack of participation in the bidding was not due to a lack of desire, and she watches the winner claim her gown, she shakes her head in regret. "Mirella, I think that's all I can take," she says, a good-natured smirk at her lips. "Shall we?"
Stepping away from Michael to Calandra's side, Zara touches her arm just briefly -- the press of her fingers, light. "You clearly already wear the style well. I look forward to seeing you wear this particular gown as well, Whisper Calandra. Mistress Talia, my congratulations. You've done remarkable work on this, and I've been pleased by the work I've ordered through your shop as well."
Mirella innocently smiles to Tyche after taking a sip of wine. So very sweet, that smile. The expression is wiped from her face when she looks over to the depleted stock of creampuffs, though. It's not like she intended to take more than a few of them. She contents herself with nipping up a couple when she follows Tyche out, but not before giving gracious smiles and curtsies to all the important people (and sundry less important ones as her path through the room dictates). You've got to be polite when you're politely breezing out of a room, after all.
Brianna sidles up to Michael. "You would cut a fine figure in a steel silk gown," she informs him.
1 Inverno Ensign, 1 Inverno Captain, Cornelius, a studious looking attendant leave, following Tyche.
Stefano, an inconspicuous Lycene bodyguard, Carmela, a gleaming dusken-feathered crow, Ambra, a plain-faced Lycene scribe, Tyche leave, following Mirella.
"You are very kind dear cousin." With those words though, Alarissa's slipping out of the shop.
Maxene, the steadfast ladies maid, Elegance, a Velenosian Greyhound, Pellinor, 3 Thrax Guards, Honey Snuggle, a Velenosian Angora cat, 2 Thrax Elite Guards leave, following Alarissa.
Michael is turning away from Zara as she steps away. Easing backwards a few steps as if he might keep an eye on those who would approach him. Then Brianna slips in and Michael nearly starts. "Ohhhh. I haven't the funds nor the calves for such a gown. The one with the winning bid will look lovely in it, I am sure."
Talia moves to quietly confer with Calandra about the dress and funds, probably.
Brianna looks at Michael with a bit of concern when he startles. "Are you quite all right, Bisland?"
Brianna is overheard praising Talia.
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