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Tell Me Something About Yourself

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' `--' `.-' `--' `--' `

It's a travesty!

Lady Monique Greenmarch's Gift Chest
is just entirely too full of gifts!

This has inspired the Lady to hold
a gathering with her inestimable co-
host and protege, Delia Whisper. The
way to garner a prize from the Gift
Chest, you ask? Tell the Lady some-
thing about yourself that almost no
one would know or guess. You may do
it publicly or privately, depending
on how bold you're feeling, or how
much whisky you've had that evening!

Prizes will be in sealed pouches and
participants will be allowed to draw
one at random. Prizes include shiny
jewelry, sharp weapons, entrancing
outfits, and alluring scents! All
are welcome to come and get to know
the citizens of Arx, and claim their
gift so long as the gifts last.

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' `--' `.-' `--' `--' `


Nov. 29, 2019, 9 p.m.

Hosted By

Monique Delia


Sebastian Merek Teagan Strozza Thea Sabella Alarissa Sorrel Juliana Sydney Thomas Swift Peri Delilah Niklas Mikani Jules Rhue Lenne Dio Rinel



Arx - Ward of the Crown - Whisper House - The Arcadia

Largesse Level


Comments and Log


The upcoming gifting event with Lady Greenmarch is something I have been looking forward to since she first proposed the idea. Not only because she gives the best gifts (as I can attest), but because the Whisper House's gardens are finally free of snow and I can be outside without risking losing a toe or a finger to frostbite!

I just know it will be utterly grand.


And I was not disappointed by Lady Greenmarch's secret-telling event. I was right about the quality of gifts - and the guests were second to none. I hope that everyone came away lighter for having shared a secret or two with Monique.

The Arcadia has been lightly decorated this lovely spring evening to create an air of informality that suits the already-beautiful garden of the Whisper House. Servers circulate the pathways and the main green expanse, delivering up a variety of different alcohols and a plethora of small finger foods, accompanied by the sprightly tunes of a quartet. On the lush expanse of new grass there are colorful blankets laid out and on the largest one is Lady Monique Greenmarch, a massive chest beside her filled to overflowing with gift bags, both big and small, ready to hear the stories of the people of Arvum.

Alarissa drops a blue lace and silk picnic blanket.

Finn the large Northern hunting dog with icy blue eyes arrives, following Thea.

For her part, Delia is enjoying the crisp spring weather too much to lounge about on a blanket - at least to start. She stands nearer the entrance, welcoming guests as they arrive. Dressed down tonight (relatively speaking), she has a smile for everybody as they appear, and when there are lulls in the flow of guests, she can be seen absently nodding to the quartet's music, obviously enjoying it quite a lot.

Alarissa drops A red and white checkered cotton blanket.

Sebastian arrives, wearing a familiar mix of silk with an umbra cloak, Juliana on his arm. He looks thin and pale, like someone who has been ill, or recently recovered. "So, was she chasing Argent around the room?" he's asking his twin, voice amused. "You realize you'll have to re-stage this again for me just so I can enjoy it? There was other colors there, too -- I could get more," he says, like a half-threat, though there's no malice in it. He collects a glass of juice from a passing server, taking a sip of it before he offers it to Juliana, oddly enough for him not collecting a glass of his own. He guides them towards Monique, pausing to offer a bow to the woman. "Lady Monique," he murmurs with a glimmering amusement, straightening. "You know my sister, Juliana?"

Merek makes a way into the place, settling about to look about while he smiles at all the people and leans back.

Alarissa drops A green floral patterned picnic blanket.

Perhaps it is the pleasant weather that has brought Lady Teagan Blackram out. The woman is certainly not a socialite as some and even less prone to events at Whisper House and yet here she is. Her second this year. She pays a quiet, quick (so as to not hold anyone up) greeting to the hosts before making her way to a place by the reflecting pool, claiming a seat on one of the blankets there. She accepts a drink from a passing server, settling in to watch others as they arrive.

Monique has joined the A green floral patterned picnic blanket.

Slipping into the Arcadia, dressed lightly - cloak left at the door with his clothes a simple affair of weskit and blouse with trousers, all shades of dark blue with threads of gold and white woven as if to highlight and outline his form - Strozza Mazetti aooears, hands folded behind his back, head down, hair drawn back with a crown braid to hold it out of his face. Dour as ever as he enters the room, gazing around with a raised brow and tight frown.

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

Scribble, a Delicate Social Butterfly, 1 Inquisition Confessors, Pearl, a Maelstrom Forest Cat, 1 Graypeak Aerie Warden, Sorrel arrive, following Delilah.

With a loud and aggressive -HONK- a truly awful goose arrives, delivering a message to Teagan before departing.

Monique's smile brightens as Sebastian approaches with Juliana. "'Bas! I'm glad you could make it. I've some very interesting news for you though it'll have to wait. Lady Igniseri, lovely to see you again. I believe we met once, some time ago, in the company of then-Lord Aethan Kennex. I'm happy you're here. Be welcome. Make sure your brother doesn't get poisoned," she teases lightly, her green eyes sliding to watch Delia with visible approval before returning. "Will you both be sharing this evening?"

Well, apparently making sure there is at least one Malvici present, Thea makes her way into the Whisper House. She bows her head, a slight smile on her lips as she greets everyone properly. Grabbing a drink from a server, she goes and finds a seat, making rounds as she does so.

Sabella comes in chattering away to Niklas, as usual, "...half a mind to put the bottle of you know what in there, but I wonder if that would be a bit too much," she pauses to look around the room, wide eyed and beaming a smile as she does so, "I absolutely adore this place! I remember when Lumen was renovating it and I met her here to talk about convincing Tikva and Ainsley to let you court me. I--" she jumps a bit when a goose honks loudly, "I forgot there's also wildlife wandering about. How quaint!"

Thea has joined the a blue lace and silk picnic blanket.

Alarissa is already here, already given her salutations to Monique and moves through the gardens till she opts to settle down with a drink beside Teagan.

Alarissa has joined the reflecting pool.

Sorrel wanders in with Duchess Delilah, and the princess is still wearing her very loud rainbow feathered hat. It's quite stylish, and she looks rather cheerful about it. "I think we're making such progress with the research that we might have a little party. Make sure everyone's up to speed on things," she says brightly to her companion. "Where shall we sit?"

"No swhe odesn't need any more, the one is fine. And Argent kept backing away from her, then sniffing and whimpering." Jules unlike her brother does not look like she has been ill. In fact the lady looks very healthy and when the wind turns just right to sweep the gauzy sea foam skirts back against her frame, one can see she is also decidedly pregnant. Her dark curls loose down her back, the dress of gold lace and sea foam colored silk rippling around her as she accepts the glass from Sebastian, taking a small sip, her nose crinkling before handing it back. "Lady Greenmarch, good evening." offered to Monique's greeting, Juliana's head tilted slightly. "So otherwise, you only meet me with the best that Arx has to offer." she adds to the comment about the Duke Kennex, her blue gaze sliding up to her twin's with a slight arch to her brow.

It's neither the presence of weather nor socializing that has lured one guest in particular. Her dress is humble and practical, and not at all tailored for this manner of party. Sydney arrives with her hands tucked casually into the pockets of her beaten-up pantaloons. The pugilist casts an appraising glance around the Arcadia and it's denizens, latching quite immediately on to one of the more recent familiar faces she's encountered. "Strozza, wasn't it? Come, you're supposed to smile at these sorts of things, or they make you stand out." She's one to talk, stretching and raising her arms up and over her head, folding them behind her as she breezes over to examine the nearest refreshments.

Thomas strides into the garden at a brisk, purposeful pace, his cloak flaring out behind him in the light breeze -- followed closely by his servant Miguel, who bats at the corners of the cloak any time they flutter too closely to his face with a rueful mix of amusement and annoyance. The two men slow to a stop as they approach the party's hosts, and Thomas reaches out to clap a sword-calloused hand to Miguel's arm, the latter giving the former a grin and a nod before breaking off to join the other servants in the corners.

Thomas, meanwhile, steps swiftly up to Monique and Delia and bows with a grand sweep of his arm, the other rising so he can grip the broad brim of his hat. "Lady Monique, please forgive me the utterly vile crime of missing out on your company," He says, with a flash of a grin. "And the incomparable Delia Whisper, I presume? I still owe you a visit for drinks, my apologies," He chuckles a little self-deprecatingly, before inclining his head and stepping aside to make room for others to approach.

Swift arrives with little fanfare and nothing fancy, dressed in nondescript cottons and wools as she makes her way around the Arcadia. Looking around, almost gawking, she ceases to pay attention to where she's going, just wandering and ogling the surroundings. When she does finally gawk her fill, she pauses to regain her bearings and moves towards Monique.

Sebastian offers a low chuckle at Monique's warning. "It's one of her jobs, as my twin." Or possibly it's one of his jobs -- it's not quite clear, considering they always share glasses -- he holds the glass of juice when his twin hands it back, not drinking more however. "Where is--?" he follows Monique's glance to her protege, with a wider grin. "Oh, I think I might. Jules?" he glances at her questioningly. As others start to step up, he says, "Have you met the Whisper Delia? We should say hi," with a last, wry look Monique's way.

Damien Pierce - A Charming Assistant, 1 Redreef Warden, Vagari The Cinder Cat, 1 Order of the Firebird, 4 Byrne Mountain Men, 2 House Crovane Guards, Lenne, Jules arrive, following Mikani.

Peri ambles into the secret garden with Eina. They give a warm smile to Delia and Lady Monique and they loll on the grass near the reflecting pool.

The goose also manages to startle Teagan, the person that's the recipient of the message. She almost misses Alarissa's approach, but only -almost- for she does reach up to offer a hand to the Thrax Princess. "Alarissa," she says to the woman with a small smile. "A pleasure to see you."

A feathered hat full of prismatic shades deserves to be admired. With Sorrel's hat, Delilah brings along a magnificently scaled fish in a spring brook, or so the appearance may go. She has to move in a certain way to manage the challenges, falling in beside the princess. "Let's grab a space before every last one is claimed. I can hardly lament on being too far away to hear if I am close enough to the thick of it." A wink given, and she smiles upon anyone she well enough recognizes, which is probably most.

"I remember as well. Only a few months after that we were considering where we would marry. And then a year or so after that was that fun party where Duchess Grazia and I swore that we would be best friends for as long as we both lived." Niklas pats down his chest. "And I've dodged every assassin since." He takes a light spring-y drink from a passing waiter, something green and lemony, before looking to his wife. "Where shall we sit?"

"Only the very best," Monique agrees with Juliana, and nodding. "You should. Delia is an absolute delight, and far more politic than I. Ask her about that one time, with the-" Oh, there's a Thomas, fortunately for Delia, and Monique turns her crimson head that way. "It's a travesty! But you live, and I count that a person win. Welcome, Lord Thomas. Will you be sharing this evening?" Her emerald gaze lands on Swift, a smile flickering there for the woman's presence, and paired with a wave for Peri's arrival. "I'll be starting the sharing post haste!"

Sorrel has joined the a sea serpent-headed longboat converted into a bath.

Addressed and giving a bit of a half-smirk when he turns to Sydney, Strozza offers a bow of his head to the woman. "Yes, well I'm not the best at smiling, at least at first. Takes time for them to bubble to the surface." offering an arm to the puglist as he speaks with her and follows towards the refreshments, as if a noble offering his elbow to a common woman is as normal breathing.

Mikani enters on Jules' arm. Her belly is rounded of one who is expecting in about a month or so. The dark green of her dress whispers as it slides along the ground. Mikani grins as she spots Peri. "Peri." Mikani gives a good bellow to her friend.

Waves, smiles, curtsies to all! Delia deftly points out places without interrupting the guests' own conversations, occasionally waving servers in the direction of guests who look like they need a little extra fortification for the evening. Her beam falls full-force on Thomas when he introduces himself, though, and the little Whisper curtsies deeply. "Lord Hawkmour! It's a pleasure to meet you at last. The party has already been a success as far as I'm concerned. Our meeting will come in due time, I'm sure - I've been rather busy myself lately, but there is always time for well-mannered lords."

She raises a hand in greeting to Sebastian and Juliana as well. "I don't know what I am being volunteered for, but whatever she says about me is no doubt exaggerated," she assures Juliana, who she hasn't yet met.

Swift dips a subtle nod and smile towards MOnique when she catches the Greenmarch's attention for that brief moment. Shifting aside, she moves away from all the nobility to find herself somewhere quiet where she can perch and watch the gathering safely.

Mira, an assistant investigator arrives, following Rhue.

With a little laugh, Sorrel opts for the longboat, which is really an absurd item for seating indoors. Not that she particularly cares. She offers waves and smiles to Monique and to Alarissa and to Juliana and to others that she might know. She makes a little space for Delilah beside her.

Jules enters in with Mikani /and/ Lenne on his arms because he's dapper. Well, unless one wants to retcon the fact he's escorting both. His stride is flowing and smooth but his torso keeps a bit less moving. He has a broad smile on his face and he nods to people everywhere he turns - so if you need to catch his attention or need someone to interact with, he just nodded to you.

"I have actually. Though I beleive it has been awhile. But that can be said for many things. I would bet that Alarissa even has forgotten my face." Juliana answers her brother as she reaches for the glass he is holding but it's simply to set it aside and snag a good red in passing instead. Taking a sip, replaces the glass she discarded into Sebastian's hand. All he will get is ignored if he protests.

Sabella has joined the line.

Sorrel has joined the line.

Jules has joined the line.

Teagan has joined the line.

A few moments later, Sebastian's guiding Juliana over towards Delia. There's plenty of opportunities to discard his glass -- but he doesn't so so -- making a brief face when Juliana does instead. It's one of those complex expressions that probably conveys much more non-verbally, but he dutifully sips a moment after she places it into his hand. "Nothing yet, I assure you -- but I assume there's something coming, because it is the Lady Monique," the Pravus Lord murmurs to Delia in amusement. "Whisper Delia, my sister, the Lady Juliana Igniseri."

Swift has joined the line.

Delilah has joined the a sea serpent-headed longboat converted into a bath.

Sydney has joined the line.

Thea has joined the line.

Sabella laughs loudly at that, wrapping both arms around one of Niklas' and leaning into his shoulder, "Let's go over and greet Lady Monique! And that will allow us to be first in line should we want to share something! Which I do since I said I'd be putting my gift into a basket for the raffle. Unless it's a tiara. Or maybe especially if it's a tiara? That would be very hard to give up."

Lenne has joined the line.

Niklas has joined the line.

Sebastian has joined the line.

At least the longboat suits; the fish and the feathers probably go well together. Lilah crooks her fingers in greeting to Monique and Delia in passing, though she slides in next to Sorrel with a merry laugh. A little adjustment leaves her flush up against the wall of the boat, but so be it, she's content. "I hope to hear a few of these stories before deciding how to step into the fray. If I should, anyhow."

Sydney offers a game bob of her head as Strozza offers an arm. She gladly loops arms with him and meanders her way over to... well, whatever there is to eat. It truly matters little, for the pugilist is quite quick to scoop up the sweetest thing available and hold it in her teeth while scooping up something equally delectable. Munching less than casually, she tosses her head back to less-than-elegantly polish off the snack, wiping her mouth with the thumb of gloves. Doing so with the back of her hand is a rather riskier affair. "I'm quite pleased to see a familiar face. It distracts me from simply spending the entire time demolishing the refreshments." Not that it's stopping her.

Turn in line: Sabella

Rhue arrives rather late, arm in arm with her investigative assistant. "Are you planning to share, Mira? It ought to be interesting to hear some of these secrets, if people opt to share aloud," she murmurs to her companion. A smile and a dip of her head is offered to Jules and the company he escorts, as they arrive to the event at the same time.

Lenne peers about curiously from her seemingly-customary place at Jules' arm. "Ah, what sort of party is this?" she asks, likely to her escorts. "Charging into situations blind continues to be the common theme of my week. But if there is a line, I suppose it's only polite to join it." So off she goes toward it, departing the comfort of the anchor-Jules. "Are we to be introduced? Or is there simply not enough wine to go around, and thus we must fight for it?" She leans to one side, to peek forward along the line. "I'll have to find a proper champion."

"I do not know if there is much to disclose to you that I have not already, my lady," Thomas says, that grin growing a little wider as he chuckles again. "But I will think on it swiftly, and come up with something suitably embarrassing." When Delia beams at him, he can't help but smile back -- with an earnest warmth that softens the hard corners of his eyes, and he bows his head to her again. "I am much looking forward to it, Sweetest Whisper. As for the party..." He spreads his arms to indicate the other guests, brows quirking with open admiration. "I see a whole garden of esteemed company. I am only glad to be a part of it."

Thea is content for now sipping her wine and listening to the conversation around her, smoothing her gown just a little.

Monique waves as Sabella approaches and the Greenmarch gestures to the gift chest. "As promised. If it's an especially exciting tidbit about yourself, Princess, I'll happily let you choose two. One to keep and one for your raffle. Would you like to speak it out loud, or a private declaration?" She waggles her crimson brows with pleasant insinuation, like Minxes do.

"I think for this a private declaration," Sabella admits, giving Monique a smile, "And hopefully it will be surprising enough to be worth the two!" And that said, she leans in close to whisper something to Monique.

Thomas has joined the line.

"I suppose I will have to grin and bear it, come what may," Delia says to Sebastian with a wink and a chuckle. "It's good to see you again, My Lord. It's been too long. My Lady," she curtsies to Juliana. "Forgive me - I do try not to forget faces, but even my memory sometimes gives out on me. Regardless, I hope you both enjoy the gardens. Someone should - they're only just starting to come in again."

Thomas's smile draws another one from Delia, and she throws her gaze across the gathered guests, nodding. "We did draw a fine crowd. I expect that everyone, high or commoner, will find something or someone to enjoy here tonight."

Alarissa has joined the line.

"It is a pleasure to meet you, again." Juliana nods to Delia with a smile, a motion towards the gardens around them. "Loveingly done, my compliments." She will leave the drink is Sebastian's hand for the moment before turning her attention towards those around her. Catching sight of Sorrel, there is a smile offered to her cousin's wife. "Princess Herb, it's lovely to see you." the greeting accompanying a moment where Jules slides away from Sebastian long enough to press a kiss to Sorrel's cheek before returning to her brother's arm.

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

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

Kuhlai steps with Strozza and Sydney, lifting a platter for the fire haired woman to place nibbles onto, which the Mazetti begins adding a few items to, "Do you have a refreshment of such, Sydney? The truffles are a delight - but it depends if you prefer chocolates, creams, caramels, or fruit candies - yes?" looking to the others that come or move about the room. "And don't worry about grabbing, miss. There will be plenty and Kuhlai will make sure you're provisioned, yes?"

Monique checked composure at difficulty 15, rolling 6 lower.

"I have missed spring," Sebastian says almost wistfully to Delia, his eyes traveling over the space, and over the various blankets and scattered attendees. "And what a way to welcome it back to Arx. I assume you're to credit for much of this?" his hand -- freed while Juliana departs briefly to greet the Thraxian Princess, waves around. Sorrel, in turn, receives a brief nod, though the Pravus Lord doesn't move away just yet.

"There you are, a secret about me: Lady Juliana calls me 'Princess Herb!'" Sorrel declares with a laugh, leaning up to kiss Jules on the cheek fondly. "Come sit by us, won't you? You and your brother both. And whomever else is with you."

Jules passes by Rhue and gives her a large smile as well to Mira and says, "Oh, please do join us! It sounds to be great fun!" He then turns to Lenne and says, "Charging into situations blind, events at least, can be wonderful fun!" His eyes divert over towards Teagan and he gives a broad wave to her and looks as though he was about to call out but catches his excitement and returns to just a wave. He turns back to Lenne and says, "I truly have no idea, I've only been here maybe a week longer than you." He turns back to Rhue, "So glad you both decided to come as well!"

Monique listens to Sabella's whisper and for a moment, just for a moment, the Minx allows a deep and abiding approval to steal across her lovely face at whatever the Grayson Princess admits via hushed tones. Hurriedly, she smooths her reaction out into something more neutral, and announces, "You /absolutely/ may choose two for that one. Well deserved, Your Highness. Very well deserved."

Sabella has rolled 1 25-sided dice: 15

Sabella has rolled 1 24-sided dice: 22

As his wife goes off to tell her secret truth Niklas snaps up another drink, then finishes off the two he has one after the other before passing them off to someone he has to hope works here. Monique's response to Sabella's whispered comment gets raised eyebrows from Niklas. Perhaps he didn't know what she was going to share.

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Sabella beams at Monique, still every bit as upbeat as she was when she came in. Surely whatever she said couldn't have been bad at all! "My thanks, Lady Monique! And might I say not only is this a lovely place for an event, this is an incredibly intriguing one as well!" She goes to get her two bags, before rushing back over to Niklas, "You should've followed me, I told you I'd be first in line!"

Turn in line: Sorrel

Quirking a brow as she catches the look on Monique's face, Delia can't help but give Sabella a curious look. But only for a moment or two. The next moment she returns her gaze to Sebastian, a blush beginning to darken her cheeks. "Sadly not," she says. "Unless I can be given kudos simply for living here. Whisper House has some very astute and amazing gardeners in our employ. All I did was choose the location - Lady Mo and the staff did the rest." But I'm glad it suits you. That was the intent."

Taking a step or two away from Mo's blanket and the gathering there, she beckons with two fingers to a figure sitting on the grass a ways off. "Sir Merek! I don' believe I've seen you since ... the last Rite of Gloria, perhaps?"

Strozza has joined the line.

Lenne listens attentively, to get a sense of what she's tentatively signed herself up for. One must give up secrets about themselves? She has gotten a few interesting ones, in the last few days. But in what is sure to be the way of the city, she cannot tell most of them. More's the pity! Well, she has come well-equipped from a very bizarre few days, so maybe she can at least offer something to amuse. "I've never seen this particular party game," she says to Jules. "Do you have something dark and secret that you want to share? Might we see what happens in the surely deep and subtle psyche of Jules?"

"A gorgeous job all the same, so claim credit fairly," Lilah replies to Delia, since it's hard not to overhear that. She settles against the seat of the longboat, content largely to catch the comings and goings for a bit.

"Big crowds can become rather overwhelming, but the premise of this event is so interesting, don't you think?" Rhue offers in response to Jules, her words offered to his companions as well. Taking in Monique's response to the first secret revealed, she widens her eyes faintly, trepidation and curiosity warring upon her features. "Will any of you be sharing today?" A query to Jules, Lenne, and anyone near enough for casual conversation. Spotting Delilah in the crowd, the young Wainryte brightens and lifts a hand in a wave of greeting, warm smile beamed in her direction.

Sydney offers a rather pleased look at Strozza, and replies by beginning to try one of each as she casts her eyes about the rest of the room. There are too terribly many faces to keep track of, though there's an obvious flicker of recognition here, and a click of her tongue there. Her gaze hesitates especially on Merek when Delia brings attention to him. She leans close and murmurs to Strozza.

"Ah, but I followed you," Sorrel points out to Sabella with a cheerful laugh. "And you kept your secret very secretive, so I don't even know if I am going to give a good one or not!" She nods brightly to Monique, then stands up and pats her sword. "Two things, I shall share, one personal and one less so. First, I am almost never without my sword because it was a gift from my husband when our second child was born, and I feel just a little bit more empowered knowing that his love is represented in the crafting. It is called Resonant Edge because I am a singer and a bard," she says brightly. "And secondly, if you believe in Magic and the true Love of the Gods, then believe me when I say I saw my friend sing her first magical song the other day. I cannot tell you who -- no, that's not my secret to tell -- but the Choir of the Dream's Singers shall swell! This is a tricky talent to hide."

Lenne gives an affirmative bob of her head at Rhue's question. "I've had a very strange, terrifying and occasionally silly few days. So I'll take a turn, and own my embarrassment by sharing. Though, I admit, I'm unsure what the prizes are. Or why the prizes are, for that matter." She gives a little twirl of her finger. "When Lady Mikani plays the part of the whirlwind, you don't question things too much, and just go along for the ride."

"I think many have heard me call you such, Sorrel. You would need to talk Sebastian into it. I promised an evening with him. We don't get as many as we used too. But soon, you and I can spend a day, yes?" Juliana smiles to the Princess. Having returned to Sebastian, settles in against him as she turns her attention to the stories being shared.

Juliana has joined the line.

Rhue has joined the line.

Teagan seems to be enjoying both people-watching and people-listening as everyone gathers to tell their stories or simply gathers in clusters throughout the Arcadia. She is speaking quietly with Peri and Alarissa by the reflecting pool, but keeps half an eye (at least) on those that approach Monique with their stories.

Half-turning to listen to the first secret, Sebastian looks visibly disappointed it's not shared with the public. "Oh, you're far too modest, Whisper Delia," he says, like he's half-scolding her. Sorrel's invitation has him glancing at Juliana, then towards Delia inquiringly, "We can sit, if you like. Join us, won't you, if you're done with guarding the door for now?" the invitation offered to Delia with a brief smile as he guides Juliana towards the picnic blanket. "Princess Sorrel," he murmurs as he gets closer, giving an effortless smile, watching as she steps towards Monique. "And Duchess Delilah, what a delight. It's been some time."

Strozza tilts his head to listen to Sydney as she speaks to him, leaning in close as well - lifting a caramel cream for her to take - however she feels to take it. His eyes casually surveying the room, his expression a little bit of a saucier grin.

Sebastian has joined the a sea serpent-headed longboat converted into a bath.

"If a Scholar says I should, then take credit I shall," Delia says cheerfully over the general buzz of chatter, catching Delilah's eye with a grateful wave of her hand. "You are too kind, my friend."

Between other conversations and half-conversations, she does catch Lenne's words. "Even I don't know what the prizes are," she confides in the loudest possible stage whisper, so as to carry to Lenne over the party's noise. "And I am her co-host! They are bound to be good, though."

She gives Sebastian a curtsy and a smile, falling in beside him. "Thank you, My Lord. I would be delighted."

Sabella grins at Sorrel, then blinks at the second part of her secret, eyes going wide, "I thought perhaps--well, I should say no more because you're right, it's their secret, but I didn't realize that such a thing..." she pauses and looks around at all the very many people, "It certainly gives very ordinary people such as myself hope that fantastical things might still be possible for us too!"

Juliana has joined the a sea serpent-headed longboat converted into a bath.

Monique listens attentively to Sorrel's stories and her brows quirk. "At Lord Rysen's show, perhaps? There were /many/ interesting things that happened that night, it seems. Excellent! Please, Princess Sorrel, select a gift bag! Brave woman, voicing it aloud to give everyone some excitement and speculation."

Niklas raises a drink when Sorrel talks of a new spellsinger and says, "I know of whom you speak and I am profoundly jealous in many ways. But happy for them as wel"

Sorrel has rolled 1 23-sided dice: 12


Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Jules chuckles to Lenne's inquiry of deep dark secrets and says, "I am the deep dark secret." He gives a bow of his head, which is about the most he can give to her. Turning to Rhue, Jules adds, "Oh dear yes, that's part of the appeal. The overwhelming is like a massive storm, who knows what will happen. I will be sharing but nothing too exciting I fear." He then gestures Teagan over towards him but then pauses when he realizes she's with someone, "How about you both?" He then leans in to whisper to Lenne...

Turn in line: Jules

Delia has joined the a sea serpent-headed longboat converted into a bath.

Teagan does look up in time to spot Jules gesturing to her. She just arches a brow and gestures, in turn, to the two women he's escorting. She looks, if anything mildly bemused.

When Delia calls out to Merek, Thomas's eyebrows rise and he turns his head to track the man as well, his expression lighting up a little. "Sir Merek!" He says, offering the knight a bow with a flourish of his cloak. "It is a delight to see a fellow Knight of the Order again, and so soon, no? Come join the queue with me, brother, and tell the delightful Lady Mo something shocking from your adventures. She would look quite striking with a streak of white scared into that copper hair, eh?"

Jules turns to Monique, and he realizes he's not been paying attention to anything that's been happening around him, too much interaction to actually listen to the directions. He laughs to himself and says, "Dear me!" He blinks a moment, taps his chin and says, "Jules Fabron, your servant." He gives a bow with a bit of a flourished hand and as he comes up he says, "Both my parents were blacksmiths and I was raised to be a blacksmith... I can even do a little smithing."

"Far too long, Lord Sebastian. I remember the delight of a riddle you set before me, and haven't forgotten how sharp your mind is." Delilah directs that in Sebastian's direction, a fondness there as she pulls her feet in closer to let him pass. She is, after all, in an overglorified bath. Lovely things being exchanged warrant a curious look out of her, and she crosses her arms lightly, watching the others with interest.

"I would wager money," Delia calls across to Thomas, "that /nothing/ could do that job! Lady Mo will go to the grave with red hair." She tosses Monique a wink, for good measure.

"That sounds like quite a whirlwind of emotions in just the past few days," Rhue notes to Lenne, quiet laughter accompanying her observation. "I suppose I'll share as well, although trying to come up with a suitable secret will take some thinking." As Jules shares his tidbit of little-known information, she quiets to listens attentively.

"Ah Master Fabron! It's so nice to put a face to the messengered name. You and I ought to speak privately later, when all the gifts are gone, about that party and perhaps a pair of horseshoes for a steed I plan to acquire in the near future," Monique teases Jules warmly, gesturing to the gift chest. "Until then, I do hope you get something you'll love. I thank you for sharing." Did Monique just glare in Thomas's direction discreetly? She did.

Juliana settles in beside her brother.. it takes a moment to lower and not look like she is trying to balance a glass on her belly. Watching as he keeps the glass to himself and gives a little snort. "How about the secret that my brother is a bit over protective at times." grins and takes the glass from him, taking a sip then handing it back.

Jules has rolled 1 22-sided dice: 11

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Sydney offers a grateful look to Strozza and a wide grin spreads across her features. She plucks the caramel cream between her teeth and casually chomps down on it before making her way over to Merek. "Merek, I do hope you're recovering well after our combat the many days past. Have the scuffs in your armor buffed out? I'm afraid my shirt never did quite recover from the ordeal." She offers a generous bow, "Regardless, I can assure you that the feel of your axe in my side shall serve as a constant reminder of my need to better turn aside weapons with my bare fists." She offers an affable grin. "It's an aspiration I take quite seriously."

Turn in line: Teagan

Lenne raises a hand at Delia's piercing aside, to acknowledge it, and shoots her a smile. Well, it does sound like fun, at least! And she has to admit, Sorrel's entry was an interesting one indeed. She may have to look into that choir. But the talk of Rysen's opera does offer a measure of surprise. She frowns. She was rather occupied with her brother's near-assassination, and the overwhelming sense of dread before it. She missed something that interesting? But ahh, it's Jules' turn. "What? A blacksmith? You are absolutely the least practical and down-to-earth man I have ever met in my entire life, Jules. Your parents must have been as dismayed and confused as mine."

"It is certainly as bold and red as heartsblood!!" Thomas declares, laughing heartily and raising his calloused hands defensively -- especially when Monique shoots that look full of unspeakable horrors his way. He may in fact be sweating a little.

Peri is relaxing on the lawn deep in conversation with Alariss and Teagan. She leans back and props herself on a arm, and raises another to ask for more whiskey. Eina looks as if she might join the line.

"Ah, my dear friend," Delia corners one of the serving staff and points him Thomas's way. "Another glass for the Lord - you look like you need fortifying now, My Lord Hawkmour. I would hate for this party to turn into a funeral. Especially for someone like you."

Standing from her place by the reflecting pool, Teagan makes her way over towards where Monique has settled with a glass of wine still in hand. She gives Jules a brief smile as she passes. "How is your jeweled butterfly?" she asks the man by way of quiet conversation. Once she's in place she dips her head to the red-haired woman, her own black hair only half-up and held in place by a hairpin. The tall woman looks thoughtful for a moment. Then a moment more. "I've been in only a few battles. More than some and practically none compared to others. However, none -- even one that came near killing me -- left any scars until the most recent in which I found myself not only laid up for a few days, but with my first ever scar... All thanks to a vole of all things." She even goes so far as to lift her skirt just enough to show the relatively recently healed skin on the back of her knee that is, yes, absolutely scarring over. Because Oathlander she may be, the Blackrams might as well be barbarians half the time. And it is all for a good cause. What's a good story without a bit of show-and-tell?

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

Jules bows to Lady Monique and says, "So sorry I have been unable to catch you, I so look forward to it! And thank you for taking your time to organize this." He looks to the bag that he receives with a look of wonder and a broad smile given to Monique. He bows again and hops away from the limelight and back down to Lenne and laughs at her response, "Indeed you are right, quite the disappointment to them but I should not be here if it were not so." He does not seem overly bothered by the fact as he holds his arm out to Lenne. Mikani has left and since he has an open arm, he gestures questioningly towards Teagan. He looks about, where was he? He looks to Rheaand says, "You certainly must have some good item to add. Certainly better than being raised by blacksmiths."

Watching the others while Sydney moves off to confront Merek, Strozza chuckles at the manner in how the boxer took the caramel from him. There's an appreciative nod though and he stands, noshing a little on a few finger foods, eyes moving face to face. The various islands amidst the sea of people. The Mazetti lord moves away from the foot, expression sliding back to impassiveness, though his attention frequently returns to the reflecting pool - and so he is drawn there while he awaits his turn, standing and staring down at his own reflection in the waters.

Monique regards Teagan's scar with a riot of envy flickering across her face before she banishes it with words. "A vole? That's... almost unbelievable. Almost. But it certainly has me wanting to hear more about it, and I wager everyone else in this beautiful garden, too. Lady Oathlander, you wear your scar well," Monique nods and invites Teagan to the gift chest. "It is absolutely worth a gift."

Teagan has rolled 1 21-sided dice: 14

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Turn in line: Swift

"Ah, the champain that ended up with me angry with both Sebastian and Galen." Juliana eyes her brother. "And perhaps the only time that Aethan ever reached out to apologize for something. Not that he needed too." glancing to the stories being told, there is a slight tilt to her head as she leans towards Sorrel, her voice lowering but not really a whisper. "Really, it looks as if one really needs to go a little more.. Lycene on these."

Thomas flashes a greatful grin Delia's way, and when the drink arrives, he doesn't hesitate in knocking back the glass in practically a single gulp, exhaling sharply and wiping the back of his hand across his forehead as he peers at Monique with wide, pleading eyes. How much of this is wry theatrics is...somewhat unclear.

Peri has joined the line.

Jules watches as Teagan gives her secret and show-and-tell and says to Lenne, "Perfectly missed opportunity." He then laughs and shakes his head slowly to lean in and whisper something to her...

"And yet," Teagan says, "Lady Tesha Telmar has one that near matches." She seems pleased enough, stepping away so the next in line can join. The woman looks to Jules and gives him a single held up finger. A 'Just a moment' before returning to the reflecting pool. She says something quietly to Alarissa and Peri before stepping away to make her way over to the man and Lenne, dipping her head in a nod to both.

Noting that her place is toward the end of line, Rhue takes the opportunity to mingle around the room while she waits for her name to be called. Her companion having moved off to the refreshments table to claim a drink for them both, Rhue makes her way through the crowd toward Delilah, a smile and curtsy offered in greeting. "Lady Lilah, it's good to see you!"

Monique checked composure at difficulty 15, rolling 6 lower.

Lenne gives Jules a playful jab in the side with her elbow, as she takes his arm and whispers to her. "All the people at that bawdy bar are starting to rub off on you, Jules," she says in a scolding tone, giving him a playful glare. When Teagan returns, she can't resist asking. "Well, now that you have more time, you can tell us more about this vole of yours. Was it particularly fierce? Especially long in the little teeth? Did its eyes burn with demonic malice?"

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

There's a voice at Monique's back all of a sudden, sneaky and subtle and only those paying very close attention will note Swift there, whispering into the Greenmarch's ear and then sneaking away, leaving the Minx looking startled. Until she bursts into laughter. "Someone find that voice and give them a gift, for surely it was worth it. I have a sneaking suspicion I recognize the voice of a new very good friend whom I have /much/ in common with." A server leans in to hear Monique say a name, and then fetches a bag to give to Swift, if he can find her.

Monique has rolled 1 20-sided dice: 16

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Turn in line: Sydney

Jules bows to the arriving Teagan, there's a little flair to it but the fact is, it is just to crowded to be too dramatic. As he stands upright, he gestures the butterfly he wears to the lady and then turns to gesture towards Lenne, "Lady Teagan, may I present Lady Lenne. She is the sister in law of my lady-employer Lady Mikani." He gives a dipping bow of his head, "She is a most delightful person to know." He states as he speaks to both women, leaving it uncertain which he is speaking about (or both.)

At Monique's laughter, Delia turns, surveying the area for the woman who has so delighted the Minx.

Anne, a dangerously alluring Seraceni first mate, 2 Seraceni pirates arrive, following Dio.

Sydney ruefully turns away from Merek at the lack of any meaningful retort, looking the slightest bit irked. When her turn in line come up, she pauses and approaches Monique with all the nobility and grace that a brawler from the Lower Boroughs can scrape together - to her credit, it's not a completely abysmal offering. She saunter on up, and offers a bow, a gauntlet-clad hand tucking neatly to her front as she bows. "A pleasure to make your acquaintance, Lady Greenmarch." The underdressed brawler approaches. Apparently hers is a secret to be told in private.

Dio arrives in the Arcadia with Anne and a pair of rather piratical looking guards. He moves slowly past the satyr statues, letting his gaze linger on them admiringly, before taking a glass of red wine and making his way to side of Lady Peri Seliki.

There's an arch of brow to Lenne, but Teagan takes it in stride. She finishes her drink and hands off the empty to a passing server, obtaining a fresh glass. "Mmmm. Therein lies a whole other story, I suppose," she tells the woman. There is a nod to Jules, before she takes a drink. "You see, Oathland Cave Voles tend to be rather small things. The size of mice, perhaps. These, on the other hand, were the size of badgers roughly and behaved as if rabid." Her features remain entirely passive as she speaks, looking between Jules and Lenne both. "I imagine it had something to do with the blood cultist." As if that's just an everyday occurence, right?

Continuing to stare into his reflection, Strozza's head tilts one way then the other before his head lifts to watch Monique and those approaching her in turn. Brows knitting together and his expression remaining marble. As his hand comes up Kuhlai places a goblet with a disturbingly bright red drink in it that the lord sips, considers and then nods.

"Good, the lemon is perfect. Is it... is it missing cherry? Or perhaps strawberry?" looking to his aide, Strozza's lips purse watching his man take a sip from his own goblet, sharing a meaningful look with the dour Mazetti.

Peri is still seated near Alarissa. By this point she's had a few whiskey's and is almost to the point where she will swear like a sailor.

As Sydney bends near, Monique tilts her crimson head to listen to the tale told, and her expression shifts from easy complacence to something less so, a shiver running up her spine as Sydney finishes and steps away. The Minx's eyes are green and wide, filled with a unique sort of horror. They dart to the ground and then back up to Sydney. "Well. You've fueled /my/ nightmares for the foreseeable future. Gods and spirits, you're a brave woman who deserves a gift."

Sydney has rolled 1 19-sided dice: 5

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Sydney retreats back with a bow and a smile, then rises, tucking her hands right back into the pockets of her pantaloons. "Always happy to share in a nightmare. May it serve you as well as it has me." A wink, and she turns. The pugilist seems to hear something that catches her interest, and she sweeps her focus over toward Jules, tilting her head and meandering on over.

Turn in line: Thea

Thea glances at Peri and smile a bit. She braces her ears a bit because...Loud Seliki. Sipping from her glass, she sends Finn off with another letter.

"Pleasure to see you, My Lady," says Dio to Peri, raising his glass of wine. Glancing at Thea, Dio grins, and then turns to watch as Monique speaks of nightmares and hands out a gift. The fingers of Dio's left hand twitch as Sydney receives her gift. To Peri, Dio says softly, "They say that Lady Monique is not a woman in want of wealth."

Realizing it's her turn, she shifts her gold-flecked green eyes. She taps the corner of her lip thoughtfully but lifts her lips to Monique's ear, a whisper for her. Safer this way, but for audience sake,"I did put the itching powder in their armor. Not my fault they didn't check it before their training.."

Lenne tilts her head to one side. Now, that's quite a twist to the story. "Blood cultists? Well, I was joking about the eyes burning with demonic malice, but perhaps it was so. That does sound like a fierce fight. I expected more an anecdote of one getting underfoot in some other melee. May I ask, Lady Teagan, if you often face threats such as those, here? I don't have much experience outside of the Northlands. And we always have our problems with the Abandoned." Though perhaps not as many problems as the Northern houses should have, it's often said, of course. "I think I'd very much love to hear more of your heroics in perhaps a quieter spot than this."

Jules takes a bit of a gulp at the mention of blood-cultists and his eyes shift about a few moments and then says, "Surely another time Lady Lenne, some things..." His voice trails off and he says, "Did you see what was in your bag?" He opens his own and sees the start of a corset and begins to laugh, "I say!" He tucks the clothing back in the bag and laughs again.

"Goodness, are those little shrimps? Ah, 'tis the season," says Niklas, indulging in seafood as it walks past. He's watching the show, but given all the whispering is getting more enjoyment out of watching Monique fail to hide her delight or shock at whatever it is people decide to share with her. Tilting his head toward he wife he says, "You'll have to tell me what you said to her when we get home."

Dio has joined the reflecting pool.

"I am Blackram, Lady Lenne. We are well familiar with the raids the war-hungry clans will undertake. The pleasures of being the gateway to the Oathlands." Teagan does not seem bothered by the line of questioning. "Some may face them often. I would not know. It was a first for me." She does happen to see what Jules reveals in his bag and there is a quiet laugh as she glances in her own, finding a well-crafted arm cuff. "I imagine you'll look lovely in your new corset, Master Jules." She does lean over to say something to him, quietly. Perhaps further teasing regarding the attire?

Monique's expression is solemn as Thea whispers into her ear, and then decidedly intrigued, her lips parted in a soft 'o' that dissolves into laughter at the outward mention of itching powder in armor. "Was it the Iron Guard? Someone alert Commander Sparte! Quick, Lady Malvici, you'd better get your gift and then hide before someone turns you in for it. And you'll be hearing from me with /oh/ so many questions, later!" Threat? Promise? Hard to tell!

Thea has rolled 1 18-sided dice: 1

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Swift takes a five strand necklace of saik glass with a silver filigree clasp from a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild.

Turn in line: Lenne

"Blood cultists?" Rhue echoes in a quiet aside as she overhears the story being told nearby. Brows lift in surprise, but the touch of concern that settles is erased as Mira returns with two glasses in hand. One is handed to Rhue, who lifts it gratefully and takes a long sip. As each person steps forward in turn, the young woman watches and listens with rapt attention.

Lenne gives a comforting pat on the shoulder to Jules. "You have my sympathies. You'll find corsets to be terribly uncomfortable. I suggest you avoid them as often as possible. I always do." She does give a nod at his warning, though. She does remember her recent scolding. "But ahh, a moment, it's my turn."

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

Delilah has joined the line.

"We've had our share of problems with them," Peri adds to the discussion about blood cultists.

Niklas sniffs. "People should watch out when talking about blood cultists, or others are apt to call them eccentric."

Swift puts a blackened silver skull bead with amethyst eyes in a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild.

Jules raises his free hand with the bag over his mouth after Teagan whispers in his mouth and gives a gasp, "My lady!" He blinks, "I should be delighted!" He then laughs and gives his own hint of a joke then turns back to Lenne and adds, "I dare say they are but then what should I do with it?" He lifts one eyebrow while the other drops and he casts his gaze around the room.

"Especially in polite society, yes," Sorrel agrees with Niklas with a little nod. "There are so many things to consider in polite society, after all."

Lenne gives a short bow to Monique, as she steps up to meet her. "Lady Greenmarch. Compliments on an interesting theme for a party." Thanks to Sydney's turn, she has a name to put to the face of her host. "Lady Lenne Crovane, recently here in the city, from Stormwall." She straightens her back, and squares her shoulders. No backing out now. "For my secret, I will offer up my pride. Last night, while walking the woods, I stumbled into a camp with a fire, and a wolf spirit residing by it. For quite some time I questioned him to find out just what sort of spirit he was, and marvelled at the absurdity of a wolf who camped like a man, with a wolf companion who acted like a dog. They are very obtuse things, you see, spirits. They're never easy to understand. Well, under my withering inquisition, it turned out my spirit was actually just the particularly tolerant Marquis of The Cloudspine, camping with his faithful hound." She inclines her head. "He was quite gentle and forgiving, thankfully. Things look very different from the other side, to my credit. But thus I learned to mind that Arx is rather more populated by people than I'm used to, even in the deeps of the woods."

Strozza has joined the reflecting pool.

Swinging her gift-bag lazily at her side, Sydney offers an apologetic wave to Strozza and makes for where a few other guests are gathered. She's apparently learning to mingle, horror of horrors. Jules is approached, and lightly tapped on the shoulder. "Hey, 'scuse me. Who were you introducing, just now?" The short-haired pugilist props a fist lazily at the side of her narrow hip. She looks across to Teagan, and then... whoops, there goes her attention, swiveling on over to the one currently speaking. "Ah."

Thea has left the a blue lace and silk picnic blanket.

Thea has joined the reflecting pool.

"And the rumors that the Marquis of The Cloudspine is a spirit wolf are bound to be all over the City by morning," Monique says with an approving laughter. "Welcome to Arx, Lady Crovane. I have no doubt you will find your footing, and I hope you'll visit me soon. Your brother mentioned we have much in common. How is he? You really ought to take a gift bag for Lord Rysen, too, to help him convalesce faster."

"Funny the jokes people pick up on," Teagan says mildly, even as she takes another drink of her wine. She does give a nod to Jules, smiling to the man. "Lovely. I look forward to attending with you." Lenne's story is listened to and there's a mild -snort- from the raven-haired woman. "A wolf spirit. That might be the kindest description my brother has ever been given. He's more of a big, shaggy dog in desperate need of a bath."

Damien Pierce - A Charming Assistant have been dismissed.

1 Redreef Warden have been dismissed.

Vagari The Cinder Cat have been dismissed.

1 Order of the Firebird have been dismissed.

4 Byrne Mountain Men have been dismissed.

2 House Crovane Guards have been dismissed.

A bow and a faint flicker of a smile is offered to Sydney as she makes her way to mingle, Strozza remains at the pool, looking to those present and then back to his reflections in the water, brow raised and sipping his disturbingly red drink - waiting for his time to approach Monique.

Lenne has rolled 1 17-sided dice: 17

Lenne has rolled 1 16-sided dice: 16

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Turn in line: Niklas

Niklas stares at Lenne as she tells her story, then glances back to his wife and gives a shrug. After popping perhaps one-too-many shrimp in his mouth, Niklas heads over to where Monique wiaits, a bit of a spring in his step and a smile for the audience. Chew chew, swallow, make a face, grab a glass of wine, down a glass of wine. "Whew." He lifts the glass in toast to the room, then turns with a grin and whispers something to Monique.

Merek looks thoughtful to Monique, "So how does this thing work?" he asks.

Merek has joined the line.

Jules turns to Sydney as he's tapped on the shoulder. He directs his attention away from Lenne briefly and gives a bow to the new arrival and, with a smile says, "Jules Fabron, your servant." He then gestures towards Teagan broadly and says, "Lady Teagan Blackram," And then a broad gesture towards Lenne in the spotlight and says, "And Lady Lenne." He turns back to Lenne in time to give a laugh at her statement and then to Teagan and says, "I am quiteflattered at your attention." He then gives her a soft laugh and says, "Dear me, he sounds like a wonderful man to meet!" He turns back to Sydney, "Are you familiar with either?"

Monique checked composure at difficulty 15, rolling 11 lower.

Delilah has left the a sea serpent-headed longboat converted into a bath.

Scribble, a Delicate Social Butterfly have been dismissed.

1 Inquisition Confessors have been dismissed.

Pearl, a Maelstrom Forest Cat have been dismissed.

1 Graypeak Aerie Warden have been dismissed.

Lenne's story seems to draw Dio's attention, and he raises his glass to her at its conclusion with a thoughtful look on his face. He takes a sip of his wine, and grins to see the Niklas finish of his seafood quickly, and bound to Monique's side so dramatically. "Gods, I wish he told his story to all," he mutters from beside Peri and Alarissa.

Whatever Niklas whispers to her is not what Monique expected to hear, that much is clear. The drink she was swallowing is promptly choked upon, and with watering eyes, her regard falls upon the now-Grayson Prince. She looks at him, weighing, and then offers, "Unanticipated, Prince Niklas. /Very/ unanticipated." She clears her throat, gesturing to the gift chest. "I certainly wouldn't stand in your way, now."

Niklas has rolled 1 15-sided dice: 4

"It is. One of the few dresses that I have that has thus far managed to either escape being given away, or dissembled into pieces. I think it's because I had it made in Maelstrom and watched them paint the silk. I can never bear to part with it and I find it a lovely blend between the Grayson I was born and the Thrax that I have become." There's a gesture to the sash at his waist. "And may I remark to my jealousy at such? So lovely." Alarissa looks to the story from Lenne and then back to the Marquis. "Some stories, are perhaps, not for the faint of heart."

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Lenne gives a rather grave nod at Monique's talk of the rumor of wolfhood. "I haven't entirely ruled that out, mind. But such are the perils of being a shaman. You only ever pretend you know what's going on, for appearances." She gives a happy smile as she measures the two bags in her hands, trying to divine their contents before opening them. "Rysen is recovering from his wounds, thankfully. If you're a friend, you'll know a mere assassination will not slow him for long. But I'll be sure, in proper sibling form, to give him the finest of the two, which I want less." She goes back to her group then, to laugh at Teagan's point. "He's your brother? I suppose he was like that. Friendly and loyal. I looked like a complete fool, of course, so I'm sure I'll die of embarrasment if I see him again. But I rather liked him. Send him my regards, when you see him next." To the new person, she gives a curious look. She doesn't seem like the normal sort she meets at parties like these.

Turn in line: Sebastian

Rising carefully from the bath he's settled in, Sebastian hands his glass to Juliana before he makes his way towards Monique, familiar easy smile gracing his features as he stands there radiating effortless certainty. His voice lifts, briefly: "Those close to me may know that for two years... more than that... I have been working on a painting. As any artist may know and understand, we are perfectionists of the highest order. Canvases have been painted over and destroyed entirely, unfit for the vision I wanted to portray... but I have finished, finally. Soon I will display it to all, to show what two years of work can do. What the grace of Jayus' inspiration can bring to our world... when I can bring myself to part with it long enough to do so." He gives a rueful smile, acknowledging his own weakness, before he leans forward to murmur something additionally to Monique. It seems in musing over whether to express his secret in private or public... he has chosen both. That, or he's offering a second secret.

Rhue grins wryly as she studies Monique's reactions to the latest secrets. "It's almost just as enjoyable when the secrets are kept confidential. Seeing the reactions makes it all the more intriguing, wondering what could possibly have been shared," she remarks.

Niklas offers Monique a bow, tapping his forehead as he does so, takes his gift and heads back to his wife with a jaunty step. He leans over to look at her bags. "Let's see what you have. Maybe we can do a swap."

"You did so well attending me at the garden party, Master Jules, I suppose it only fair to ensure I am not left alone within the terrible clutches of the Maelstrom," Teagan says to the man. Somehow, even still, in that deadpan way of hers. She does dip her head in greeting to Sydney, but those green eyes of hers slide to Lenne as well as the woman returns. There is a nod. "Yes, he is. Whenever he larks off into the woods for days or weeks at a stretch, I'm the one left tending to everything. I'm not surprised you couldn't tell. I'm the shortest of us all, by far." She's still six-foot-tall. It's a terrible, horrendous sort of joke.

"Unless you absolutely love what you have, I was going to force you to donate it anyway," Sabella tells Niklas with a grin, pausing in saying something else as Elizabetta delivers a message, "Mean Nanny is threatening to quit again, we'd better go and see if she likes any of this first."

Whatever Sebastian adds in a whisper, it causes Monique to absolutely shine with her smile. Something quiet is whispered in return to the Pravus Lord, and the Minx's eyes are bright with something very akin to pride. Aloud, she offers, "Well, it's about damned time. Temperamental artist, take your gift and rest assured I'll be picking the lock on your room again soon."

Sydney offers a quite audible snort at Jules's bow, and she waves off the attention with the palms of both of her hands, "I assure you, if anything, I'm more as like to be the servant here." Nevertheless, the commoner offers a tilt of her head and a wide grin, "A pleasure to make your acquaintance in any case. Though, I really feel I need to find where the whiskey's hiding, at some point." She bobs her head gamely to Teagan, nodding warmly, and when Lenne approaches, she offers that same nod in her direction. "You'll have to forgive me for intruding. I'm terrible at mingling at these sorts of things, but I thought I'd make an exception." She cocks her head in Lenne's direction. "I'm an eager reader, and I merely recognized a name." Teagan's commentary has Sydney pausing and placing a hand atop her head, lifting slightly up as though to measure herself against the other woman, ruefully clicking her tongue. "The gods would have spared me a great deal of trouble had they granted me just another inch." A hissing little laugh and she smiles, "I could say as much after many of my more exciting evenings."

Juliana takes the drink as Sebastian stands, taking a sip from the glass as she watches her brother. His secret isn't a suprise to her of course, there is very few things in life each does not tell the other. But even so there is a shadow, a furrow of worry even that mars the Lady's features as she remembers the struggles he speaks.. for it might be just a painting to most but to him, this was a struggle that took her skills as a healer to help him through.

Sebastian has rolled 1 14-sided dice: 13

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Dio smiles at Alarissa, his left hand passing over the silk of his sash with pride. "You are too kind, Your Highness. Thank you. I'm glad you have preserved such a unique gown thus far - it is a treasure, and more so for being worn by so elegant a princess." He takes a sip of wine, though his dark eyes remain on the Pearl of the Isles. "House Grayson to House Thrax," he says thoughtfully. "That seems like it might have been a difficult transition - not unlike my wife's from Blanchard to Seraceni."

Turn in line: Thomas

Straightening, Sebastian's gaze remains on Monique for a moment or two, seemingly as much interested in her reaction as anything else, the upward tug suggesting he's pleased with the response. With a deep bow towards the Greenmarch Lady, he collects a pouch at random from the chest, and returns towards the bath. He must be aware of Juliana's expression, because as he settles in, he leans a shoulder against hers, letting her get first look in the pouch.

Delia has left the a sea serpent-headed longboat converted into a bath.

Thomas has been lingering at the edges of the garden, admiring the aesthetics with a quiet and distant expression on his face and one arm folded behind his back as he sips at the remnants of dark red wine in his glass, shoulders and boots squared up in proper military form. When it's his turn to speak to Monique, he blinks a little as if breaking out of some reverie, and he steps up to her with that brisk, unerring stride. However, when he reaches her, he opens his mouth...and then pauses for a long moment, glancing around and slowly letting it close again, tilting his head with a look as if he's changed his mind at the last moment. His hard face flushes, and he leans in to whisper something to the Greenmarch Lady before drawing back with some mixed emotion on his face, one that is difficult to read -- especially from a distamce.

"Whiskey!" Does Delia have fox ears? Quite possibly. She has leapt up from her spot in the boat with the nobility and cornered a waiter as soon as she catches Sydney's comment. Give it a moment or two, and there is a waiter at Sydney's side, offering her said whiskey with the persed expression of one commoner having to serve another.

Delia has no such qualms, and bounces up behind the waiter with a smile for Sydney. "There you are," she says. "I'm impressed, by the way - I didn't think anything could make Mo look worried."

Jules leans back in against Sebastian as he settles against her, her head resting again on his shoulder but not before her twin gets a kiss to his own jaw. A glance into the pouch and she smiles a little with a nod before handing him back their glass and wrapping her arms around his nearest as she turns her attention back to the game being played.

Thea crosses her arms comfortably against the flat of her stomach, finishing her drink and reaching for another from a passing server. That was convenient.

Lenne's expression rather falls, at that mention of being an eager reader. "I don't suppose it's too much to hope that you've read something I've written on the practices of shamanism in the eastern Northlands?" She asks, weakly. "You're one of the people that has read my journals, aren't you? Do you mind if I get your name? Are you one of the ones who wrote to me on the topic?" She holds out her hands, practically in surrender. "I promise, I am not given to madness. I'm just... plainspoken, that's all." She sighs and looks to Teagan, instead. "Apologies. My other misadventures from yesterday. There were several. Yes, he did mention that, like me, he sought the solace of the woods, to get away from the general insanity of the city proper. It's all very overwhelming."

Whatever Thomas whispers to Monique, the same proud smile she displayed moments ago continues to be displayed. "Well. Well, now. Lord Hawkmour, you have surpassed all my expectations and left me quite speechless. Which is for the best this evening, I think. Perhaps you might take two gifts, and give one away to a certain someone, with my best wishes?" There's a light note of teasing as she offers Thomas access to the gift chest.

Jules gives a bow at Teagan's compliments regarding the last party and says to her, "My lady, it was a delight to have your company ... save the spiders. But I dare say that Princess Alarissa is a most wonderfully agreeable lady. But I should be certain to do what I can to maintain your high regard." His smile broadens at his own amusement and gives a shake of his head. He turns to Lenne and adds, "We must go and visit him. It is the only way to get past it, right? I should like to meet him too!" Turning back to Sydney he adds, "I dare say I am in good company then!" He leans over a bit to compare his hair next to Sydney's and says, "Dear me, they are similiar!"

Lenne gets a cityscape ablaze in smoldering crystals on a black sapphire high-low seasilk gown from a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild.

Thomas has rolled 1 13-sided dice: 11

Thomas has rolled 1 12-sided dice: 11

Lenne gets a cableknit seatouched wool sweater in peach from a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild.

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Turn in line: Strozza

Monique is overheard praising Jules.

"Would you?" Alarissa's down, it's hard to get up and she lifts her hand to Dio for assistance in rising, lookign to be making her exit. There's a dip of her head to Peri and Thea, though the former. 'Dinner. Bring your appetite."

Seeing Alarissa making her move to leave, Delia catches the highlady's eye and smiles, bowing her head.

Monique is overheard praising Delia: Best co-hostess

Delia is overheard praising Monique: Hostess of a great and greatly intriguing party!

"Aye, Captain," Peri tells Alarissa, then doffs her imaginary hat.

Teagan is overheard praising Monique.

Sebastian is overheard praising Monique.

Sebastian is overheard praising Delia.

"One gets used to the city, but my brother will simply have to put up with it. It's -my- turn to leave the city for a few days," Teagan tells Lenne. "He just has to deal." She does give a small nod to Jules, shortly after. "The Princess is a lovely woman, it's true. I am very pleased to call her a friend."

Alarissa is overheard praising Delia: A lovely whisper.

Alarissa is overheard praising Monique: Clever Girl.

Teagan is overheard praising Delia.

Sydney offers an easy grin at the sight of Lenne's hands, and she quickly shakes her head. "Ah - no." She extends a hand, one that's currently gloved with a peculiar mixture of exotic leather and what appear to be completely incongruously extravagant diamondplate. "Name's Sydney. I believe we shared correspondence not long ago." As Jules compares their hair color, the pugilist pauses and leans the man's way. "Why, we could be related and not know it. Save for the lack of a surname." Then, there's Whiskey. Whiskey that gets her to immediately perk up and become Delia's very best friend. She sweeps the glass up and gamely downs it in one go. "Any friend of Whiskey is a friend of mine. As for my tale, well. It's more... a special sort of horror." A coy smile.

Teagan is overheard praising Alarissa.

Approaching at his turn, Strozza bows to Monique "M'lady. I am Strozza Mazetti, leaning in now to offer whatever it is he has to say in quiet confidence

There's a wriggle of her right hand's fingers to Delia and then Monique. A dip of her head to Dio and she's slipping off.

Alarissa has left the reflecting pool.

Maxene, the steadfast ladies maid, Pellinor, 3 Thrax Guards, Honey Snuggle, a Velenosian Angora cat, Elegance, a Velenosian Greyhound, 2 Thrax Elite Guards, Tracker, a Kite of the Cloudspine leave, following Alarissa.

Aha! Whiskey, that great maker of friends. Delia beams. "Then we will no doubt be fast friends," she tells Sydney, rather wryly. "Not that I would choose to be your enemy." Yes, she is looking at the lethal diamondplate gloves. She waves her fingers at Jules, adding, "It's good to see you again - have you been telling anyone else's life story by their clothes since we last met?"

Lenne, nearby, gets a curtsy. "Your Ladyship. I don't believe we've met, but please, I am Delia Whisper, and I am at your service."

A delighted smile floods over Thomas's face as he bows deeply to Monique again, much deeper this time, and as he fetches the bags and peers inside, his eyes widen. "Works of art, my dear friend. I am sure they will be greatly appreciated." Still smiling, he tucks the larger under one arm and the other into a pocket in his jerkin, and steps back and away.

Jules keeps his smile broad but his eyebrows lift up as Teagan confirms his opinion of Alarissa and says, "Indeed!" He then turns back to Delia and he laughs at her and shakes his head, "No, I fear no one else seems very interested in the prospect. I suppose it is of little surprise to have a commoner try to read you based on your clothes." He then directs his attention to Lenne and says, "Lady Lenne - Delia Whisper" And then reverses it, "Whisper - Lady Lenne, sister to Lord Rysen." He gives a bow to Delia at this point and restates, "It is such a pleasure to see you again!"

Juliana's turn in line comes and she blinks from her seated posistion.. for a moment it looks as if the pregnant woman really might try to get up, but only a moment then Jules drops back against her brother's side. "I am afraid that even if I had planned on private whisperings.. and you are so very fetching to lean in to whisper to Lady Greenmarch, that I am going to have to ask your kindness to simply relay my secrets from here?"

Monique dips her bright head low to Alarissa's departure, and then bends her ear to Strozza's whisper, listening with an intent expression. Whatever the Minx hears, her expression is all of intrigue. "Lord Mazetti, what you speak of is something I have not heard, but I've some other tales. Will you visit me at the Gilded Page soon? I've a book you really ought to read. It will pair nicely with whatever gift you choose, I think," she adds, gesturing Strozza towards the gift chest. "Your secret is certainly worth a trove."

Strozza has rolled 1 11-sided dice: 9

Sebastian reaches as if to help Juliana up, brow furrowing visibly when she drops back down. "Perhaps the Lady Monique could make an exception and come over... or that."

"That's... actually a relief," Lenne says with a positively blissful sigh. Apparently her comfort isn't whiskey, it's the bliss of anonymity. "That means that one less person than I feared read my journal. And I can live in the wonderful denial of thinking it went by mostly unnoticed. Sadly, the Duchess Crovane was not one of those that passed it by." She glances around the party. Her lips purse in a thoughtful look as she does so. "Come to think of it, if I never leave this party, ever, for the rest of my life, I may not have to face her dressing-down. But, I do thank you for your words of caution, Sydney of House Line." She inclines her head to Delia, when she's introduced, her expression shifting to a more pleasant one. "Oh! Another Whisper. I was sharing correspondance with Anisha, earlier. I've never met anyone from the Whisper house before today. It's a pleasure. I may be rather hopeless at all this, but I know enough to treasure an introduction to any members at all."

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Turn in line: Juliana

Sam, who is a boy and definitely not a princess in disguise, Isabelle, who is just so tired of everyone's nonsense, Roland, the worst bard in Arvum leave, following Niklas.

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

Dio has left the reflecting pool.

Miguel, a cheeky manservant with a pointed goatee leaves, following Thomas.

Accepting the gift with a courteous bow of his head, Strozza smiles to Monique at that, "You're too kind, lady - thank you much for this, though I'd admit I'd have joined you at the Page for only the offer to bask in the presence of such as yourself. This shall be an added bonus, if I can be so bold." offering a canine wink as he steps back, "Again, I thank you m'lady."

"Hopeless? I doubt it," Delia says with a laugh, waving a hand at Lenne to dispel those words. "It's a pleasure to meet another Crovane. Lord Rysen is someone with whom I always mean to spend time and never seem to be able to." She shrugs, and then adds more quietly, "The whites are a minefield ... for /everyone/. Believe me. I have seen worse troubles in the whites in my time."

She scoffs at Jules. "I don't believe it. It was a joy to watch. If other people don't agree, we shall just have to /make/ them agree."

Lygeia, a calligrapher and alchemist arrives, delivering a message to Lenne before departing.

In search of more wine, Dio flags down a server. "And let me get some more whiskey for Lady Peri," he adds. While he waits, he glances over to Delia having heard the tail end of Jules' introduction, and says, "You're a Whisper, Love? Your garden is exquisite. Fine art and well tended flora rarely come together so perfectly." When the server returns with the whiskey, Dio nods. "Thanks, Mate."

The flattery is very clearly balm to the vain Minx's soul and she absorbs it happily, preening. "I'll look forward to it, Lord Mazetti, with baited breath." And the Minx rises, hearing Juliana call out. "I'll happily come there! It will give me a chance to stretch my legs and leave the gift chest unguarded. Surely, a winning combination," Monique adds, as she saunters over.

Sydney curls her fingers casually back into a neutral expression, pulling back her hand to modestly rub at the back of her head, ruffling her hair in the process. The pale-complected commoner can't help but smile to Delia, "Yes, I believe there's quite a bit of truth to that. Whiskey and all its friends are quite quickly to become mine." She weaves out to seize another small glass from the waiter before he moves away, and settles back easily into the cluster of women that are currently gathered around Jules. It's Lenne that gets a throaty laugh from the brawler, and a hand perches on her hip, "...Ah, yes. House Line. It is the greatest and noblest House in Arx, I'll have you know." She raises her glass in Lenne's direction before taking a smaller sip to regard smirk to Delia, "...Yes. They're something to be approached with... due caution, from what I've experienced."

After a time, Teagan realizes she's just slipped into that space of letting the party drift on around her. She gives a small shake of her head and finishes her drink, reaching out to set a hand on Jules' arm lightly after giving the empty glass to a server. "I do believe I'm going to take my leave. I feel a bit... out of energy for all of these people. I will send you a messenger nearer to the date of the dinner in case we need to plan for anything."

Thea glances over at Delia and offers her a sincere smile,"She is one of my favorite Whispers,"looking over at Dio. Thea hasn't had quite as much to drink as the others, but she's content.

Jules is about to respond to Delia when he catches word from Teagan and blinks, his face grows concerned and he reaches out to place hand on hers and says, "Dear me, do you need to sit? Are you all right? I am certain we can find a place for you to lay in some privacy." His eyes do not look towards anyone else because when concerned the focus in single focused.

Rhue has allowed herself to remain to the outskirts of the crowd as is her wont, pleased to sip her drink and converse with Mira, who provides a comforting familiar face among such a large throng of people. Something - a flash of movement, perhaps - seems to catch her attention, gaze swiveling to rest curiously upon Sydney. "I'm so sorry to interrupt, but the gloves you're wearing... they are most interesting."

Juliana smiles as Monique crosses. "Well I didn't want to make you move besides, I have so few secrets anyway. So I will give you two and being as we have been over here talking about Setarco and making each other home sick, I will offer the most Lycene I can without getting myself arrested." her blue eyes flickering with a wicked kind of amusment. "Shalre we start with... hmm.. Ah, the first time that my dear husband, Lord Luis and I made love? It was sort of on the sly sort of thing you see as we were not alone in the Pravus hot pools. At the time we were having a very serious discussion about certain goverment policies with the only other person there. His Majesty, King Alaric. Who was very good at not pointing out that he wasn't really holding all our attention." there is a moment where she just lets it sink in before the Lady tilts her head a little to look up at her brother then back to the Lady waiting. "Second, well... most know that I am a healer, with some gift to the skill if I don't want to be modest. What very few know, is I am also a Master Alchemist. " wrinkles her nose. "Very Pravus, yes. I know."

As Monique leaves the chest unguarded, a figure is seen peeling away and drifting nearer. The figure lingers briefly, looking at the big chest, the bags within. Then it drifts away again to melt back into the faceless mob of commonfolk and servants.

Peri noh

Delia bows to Dio as he addresses her, the blush making its reappearance right on schedule. "I am, My Lord, and thank you! We take great pride in our gardens. You must come by and see the aviary at some point; if you enjoy these, you'll find the aviary as good or even better."

Thea's compliment just turns her an even deeper shade of red. "You're too kind, My Lady. I can only hope to be worth such a grand compliment."

From there, though the throng of people takes Delia out of sight. She mingles, laughing, exchanging gossip, bringing drinks and generally providing excellent customer service, but she becomes a face in the crowd, leaving Monique in the spotlight.

The chuckle Sebastian gives as Juliana starts her tale suggests he knows this story: and is neither embarrassed nor shocked she's sharing it in public company. He's mostly watching Monique throughout the tale for her reaction, before he glances back to Juliana with a smile.

Lenne unfolds a note handed to her with a look of some minor dread. She bites her lip as she reads it, but in the end, she seems if not relieved, than at least mildly comforted. "Oh. It seems that maybe my brother will be the one to scold me. I can give him his new pink sweater, from Lady Greenmarch. At the very least, I can certainly outrun him so long as he has a hole in his back." She raises a hand to wave to Teagan first. "It was lovely to meet another Blackram. Rest well." She looks back to her note for a moment and sighs. "I really do need to go, I'm afraid. It seems hiding here will just mean more messengers." She bows a head to all involved. "Sydney, Delia, it was a pleasure. I do hope we can all meet again, or share correspondences. Jules, do continue to have your fun, of course. I'll see you later on."

Monique's laughter at the first revelation is delighted. "You know, I feel certain that His Majesty has done it himself a time or two, in his wilder days. Still, these are /excellent/ not-secrets-anymore, and well worthy of a gift!" She signals an attendant, who pulls out a gift bag for Juliana and presents it with a flourish and a concerned, attentive look for the woman.

Monique has rolled 1 10-sided dice: 3

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

There is a small, but tired smile offered to Jules in answer to his concern. "It's quite all right," Teagan reassures him. "I merely find myself exhausted rather quickly in large crowds. If you wish, we can always meet before the dinner to speak again." She does look up to Lenne and gives the woman a tilt of her head in a nod. "Of course, Lady Lenne. Have a lovely evening."

Monique has rolled 1 9-sided dice: 7

Monique has rolled 1 8-sided dice: 5

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Turn in line: Rhue

When Monique mentions leaving the gift chest unguarded, Dio turns towards her and a slow grin spreads over his features. He nods to Thea and says, "One of these nights, when we've both had far more to drink, I hope you will tell me your leas favorite Whisper."

He smiles at Delia and says, "I will certainly visit the aviary if I can find it." When Dio notices Swift moving closer to the unguarded chest, and his eyes narrow competitively, but the weight of the whiskey in his hand, he returns to Peri and says, "Thought you might like a fresh glass, My Lady."

Dio has joined the reflecting pool.

Sydney finds herself with no one left to talk to in short order. She offers a smile to Lenne, "Worry not, I'm sure we'll cross paths again." She turns to regard Rhue, and her smile turns full to beaming.

As her turn approaches, Rhue lifts a finger to Sydney as if to indicate 'a moment please!' and steps forward toward Monique to sketch a graceful curtsy. "It's a pleasure to meet you, Lady Greenmarch. I'm Rhue Wainryte." A hint of a sheepish smile tugs at her lips as she steps closer still. Apparently this secret is for the lady's ears only.

Juliana takes the bag with a dip of her head. "My thanks. I should remember to tell Luis that I have shared this in public... otherwise, he might be in for a touch of a surprise." she smiles then turns her head into Sebastian's shoulder to sniffle a yawn.

Strozza slowly returns to the reflection pool, gazing into the prize bag with a slow grin forming on his face, head tilted brow up. He does not reveal the contents to the light, but he does take a fair amount of time to let light shine into the velvet, to take in all of the details.

"Why thank you," Peri tells Dio. "Sit sit." She waves her arm expansively. Join us again."

Monique listens to Rhue's whispered secret and her green eyes widen, and then she bites her lip hard, as if she's trying /very/ hard not to laugh. "That's..." she can't help the chuckle, "... burningly impressive, Mistress Wainryte. I do hope there is something in the gift chest for the outdoors, then," she adds, softly teasing. "My gratitude for your secret. And it's one I might wish to replicate some time," she adds, with a deviant grin.

Rhue has rolled 1 7-sided dice: 7

Sydney allows her gaze to follow after Rhue. Apparently she has all the time in the world to sip her whiskey and wait for the compliments to return to her. In due time.

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Turn in line: Peri

Peri can be overheard telling Eina, "No, no, you go ahead," She waves her whiskey in a shooing gesture. Eina is Peri's guard. She stands up to tell a story about herself, and Peri. "I've a story to tell 'bout that one," She cocks her head in the Seliki's direction. They grin at each other.

Eina begins, "When she was eight," She says in an aside to Peri, "Were you eight?" Peri calls back "Blue!" Eina returns to her story. "She went missing for days. I was her accomplice, though I did not know it. As it happens, Her great uncle had set out towards Stormwall, and she had a mind to follow him there. Her story was that I had leave to teach her /proper/ sailing." "Swearing!" Peri calls out. "Proper /swearing/." That's the polite version, anyway. Eina purses her lips at Peri and continues. "A couple of nights into the trip she tried to slip away to head north on her own. I caught her, and that's when I found out she had run off with me. I took her straight home, and that's when the Count hired me to follow her around." This story changes with each telling.

Jules bows to Teagan and says, "But of course my lady do rest well, I shall look forward to hearing from you if you wish - I should be delighted." He grants her his typical smile and allows her the departure before he turns back to Lenne and says, "Dear me my lady, I should not leave you to misfortune while I delight. I will come with you. Your brother or sister-in-law can dismiss me if they insist." His smile has disappeared and he offers his arm to her.

With a last look towards their hostess, Sebastian stands, offering a hand to help Juliana up. "Old," he agrees, ruefully. "Besides," he's saying, "I want to see how that hat works on her," with a grin. "I can only imagine 'cute' because well... nieces always are." And out they go.

Rinel has joined the line.

Dio sits besdie Peri at the reflecting pool, and notices Strozza gazing with delight into his velvet bag. He takes a sip of wine, but can't seem to help himself from asking, "What does it contain?" As Peri and Eina begin to tell their tale, he turns to listen.

Sebastian has left the a sea serpent-headed longboat converted into a bath.

Juliana has left the a sea serpent-headed longboat converted into a bath.

Argent, a silver hound, Tyce the gruff and disapproving, 2 Scarlet Phoenix Guard leave, following Juliana.

2 Pravosi Honor Guard, Intruder, a juvenile Oakhaven bloodhound, Juliana leave, following Sebastian.

Teagan has left the reflecting pool.

Chessa, 1 Blackram novice guards, Dimples, a Kite of the Cloudspine leave, following Teagan.

Rhue can't help but laugh at Monique's reaction, bowing her head in answer. "It is a quite enjoyable pastime," she notes with a grin that blossoms, one carrying a promise of mischief. She accepts the bag gratefully with murmured thanks and returns to Sydney with a nod to the aforementioned gloves. "So cleverly done! I've never seen anything like it."

Sydney offers a chuckle to Jules, shaking her head helplessly in the man's direction. "Gods, but you're enthusiastic. Quickly, take the man's arm, lest it falls off."

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

Lenne reaches out to press back on Jules' shoulders, laughing and shaking her head. "Oh no. You are too dutiful for your own good, Jules. You stay here. Keep the party going, for those of us that must go and fall on the field of family politics. If I can face spirits and wolves and Marquis, I can handle a walk back to the hall. You can tell me about all the fun later." She turns then, and walks out with a pace that absolutely speaks of leaving Jules to the mingling, if he wants it or not.

"Lady Seliki, you absolute deviant!" Monique crows happily in Peri's direction after Eina tells the tale. "I think that most certainly deserves a gift, but I'm not sure who ought to have it! Well, you both ought to take one, so that no one runs off again," the Minx adds, perfectly solemn.

Peri has rolled 1 7-sided dice: 4

Peri has rolled 1 6-sided dice: 5

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Turn in line: Merek

Sydney swivels as Rhue returns to her, and she immediately wears that self-satisfied grin, lifting those flexible brawling gauntlets to give them a flex, all too happy to show off the range of motion that they're capable of while positively beaming. "They're brand new, so any excuse to show them off will be /gladly/ taken." She lifts her whiskey to her lips and drinks deeply, smiling. "They're clever, aren't they? Now I have to worry far less about bruising my knuckles on platemail, and can spare my worries for dodging."

Jules bows to the departing Lenne and looks a bit concerned but such an expression should not linger long at a party. The shift is not so immediate as it had been earlier but he is smiling before any extended length and he responds to Sydney, "Indeed mistress" Or whatever title is best fitting her and says, "Indeed I am" And he gives a chuckle to her and adds, "If one is not enthusiastic to help their friends in need that seems a bit undesirable!"

Merek blinks a bit, then he walks up to Monique, with a nod to the woman. He thinks about it a moment, "I mean, mine is not too crazy, I think a bit isn't secret, a bit is though also, a few know, like, only people that know me well." He nods, leaning to whisper!

Eina bows to Lady Monique and returns to Peri's side with two bags. When Peri takes the bag from Eina she startles and is very confused. "There are three bags here, Lady Monique." Peri rubs her head. Has she had that much whiskey? She counts again. 1, 2, many. Yep. 3.

Monique checked composure at difficulty 15, rolling 5 lower.

Rinel slips into the Whisper House, looking moderately out of place. Bright colours are an odd addition to unusual garb--she's wearing breeches. Breeches!

"Very," Rhue agrees with an approving nod to Sydney, as she eyes the gloves thoughtfully. "What a smart use of materials. I wouldn't be surprised if they catch on as a new trend." She appears to have a more academic interest in the construction of them. Not a brawler, but a scholar herself.

Monique listens to Merek's secret and when he's finished, the Minx cannot help the smile that stretches her lovely lips. "That," she tells Merek, eyes alight, "is easily the best secret of the night. You've earned your gift, to be certain. And your secret is safe with me." Poor Merek. Monique's eyes slide to Peri, and then out into the crowd somewhere, and then back to the Seliki Lady. "Oh, well, it's east to miscount these things and the whisky is /very/ good. You'd best count again later. At home."

Merek has rolled 1 5-sided dice: 2

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Turn in line: Rinel

Dio rises from his seat, and finishes the rest of his wine. He turns to Thea and says, "Thank you for your company, My Lady. I will see you again soon, I hope?" He bows, and begins to make his way out of the Whisper house with Anne and the piratical entourage, stopping for a moment by Peri. "Seems you've always had the spirit of adventure, Lady Peri. Take care. I'm off to my home. Come by soon, and let's go over the maps before we sail for the Saffron Chain, eh?" He smiles, and bows his head, before making his way out of the Whisper House.

Merek beams a bit to Monique, then he nods a bit, while he takes a moment to look at the bag which he's given, "Thank you! It's pretty fun!"

Dio has left the reflecting pool.

Anne, a dangerously alluring Seraceni first mate, 2 Seraceni pirates leave, following Dio.

Merek is overheard praising Monique.

Merek is overheard praising Delia.

Jules happens to cast his eyes about and it looks as though he's spotted someone as he begins to gesture a beckoning motion. His smile casts over towards Rinel but he's uncertain whether she spots him and cocks his head a bit to see if she can indeed spot him.

Sydney puffs out her chest and looks very, very self-satisfied at the continued interest from Rhue. She nods her head, "Oh, I think they're certainly a grand idea for those that use their hands to fight. I can say only that Alexis is a miracleworker when it comes to vague and unreasonable suggestions for those who commission her." She takes another sip of whiskey, "I believe my prerequisites were, 'Something I can hit people with. Hard. And still clench my fist. And also not break my hands."

Rinel looks around and taps her lips thoughtfully, then limps to where Monique is sitting. She rests on her cane and glances between Monique and Delia. Then she sighs. "When I was young, I snuck itching powder into the pants of the town seraph, because his sermons were boring," the scholar says out loud, to the room at large.

She pauses.

"I did it every week for three months."

Thea bows her head and smiles at Monique,"This was a wonderful event. I will be sure to tell both my brothers what they missed out on,"the youngest Malvici says with sincerity.

Monique checked composure at difficulty 15, rolling 11 higher.

Strozza casually leans in near Thea, having seen her and approaching to apparently be a little cheeky, but at least reserving it for her ear alone.

She can't help it. Even without the Whiskey, Sydney overhears Rinel and roars with laughter. It's all in the delivery.

Peri smiles in tame amusement as Rinel begins the story of her prank, but by the end she snorts and laughs loudly.

It's a secret. Secrets must be treated with dignity. DIGNITY. Monique's lips don't even twitch as she dips her head to completely hide her face, to acknowledge Rinel's secret. Face completely HIDDEN. She gestures to the gift chest, without lifting her crimson head and trusting to words. Because dignity.

Rinel has rolled 1 4-sided dice: 4

Rhue laughs, brows lifted as she listens to Sydney's explanation. "Sounds like she rose to the occasion and fulfilled all the requirements." Rinel's secret earns an amused giggle and what appears to be an approving nod. "That's one way to liven up a boring sermon." Emptying the last of her glass, she inclines her head to Sydney and any others nearby. "I should be getting home. Thank you, Lady Greenmarch, for an entertaining event!"

Rhue is overheard praising Monique.

Rhue is overheard praising Delia.

Monique gets a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild from a strong gift chest emblazoned with the leaning coins of Gild.

Thea is overheard praising Monique.

Thea is overheard praising Delia.

But Monique manages a bow of gratitude for Thea's kind words, as well, even if she doesn't trust her voice just yet.

Jules gives a chuckle at Rinel's secret but when she reaches the three months he gives a bellowsome laugh and shakes his head, "Dear me! Oh dear me!" And then covers his mouth to muffle it a bit more but quickly is returned to a pleasant expression.

Rinel bows to Monique and Delia. "Thank you, my lady. Mistress Whisper." Then she turns and limps to where Jules is standing. "Goodman," she says pleasantly.

Rinel takes Velenosa Foxes Pinewood Display Case from a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild.

Rinel puts Velenosa Foxes Pinewood Display Case in a velvet gift bag embroided with the leaning coins of Gild.

Rinel says, "She can lean against things on her right side. She just doesn't put weight on her right leg."

Thea steps off to the door, nodding to Rinel, her now fellow itching powder ally,"Sweat doesn't help at all either. Makes it that much worse,"a knowing smile briefly crossing her lips, her eyes lit up with a hint of mischief. Yes. The Malvici has tricks. With a nod of departure, Thea leaves.

When finally Monique has her voice back, it's to offer, to all, "My gratitude for what you've shared this evening. It was more than anything I dared dream, and you've made a Minx very... sated. I hope you enjoy the rest of the booze and the exceptional hospitality of Whisper House." She lofts a glass of whiskey in easy toast. "To you, my friends."

Thea has left the reflecting pool.

Finn the large Northern hunting dog with icy blue eyes leaves, following Thea.

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