Skip to main content.

An Evening of Complements

Duchess Khanne Halfshav and Marquessa Lianne Malespero invite you to an evening of intriguing art and engaging conversation at Eidolon Gallery for its soft reopening. The theme of the evening is Complements, as in two different and distinct things which, together, are made better, perfected or complete. Guests are encouraged to bring both art work, in any medium, or companions which address the theme. Consider the emulsion of oil and vinegar, the perfect red rose in its verdant bush or the friendship between a reclusive demonologist and a civically engaged shaman.

Please note that while the hostesses certainly encourage guests compliment one another as they see fit, it's not quite the theme of the evening.


Nov. 21, 2020, 7 p.m.

Hosted By

Lianne Khanne


Venturo Rylan Zyanya Apollo Alessia Piccola Ripley Sabella Caprice Pasquale Rysen Elloise Fortunato Valerius(RIP) Samira Braith Niklas Rosalind Merek Theron Reigna Duarte Monique Giorgio Kiera Vitalis Kalani Sorrel Jaenelle



Arx - Ward of the Compact - Eidolon Gallery

Largesse Level


Comments and Log

For the first time in quite a very long time, the doors to Eidolon Gallery are open. One might hope, then, to find a gallery full of art inside, but the main room hosts only two pieces at the moment, both on the back wall, opposite the entrance, standing in stark contrast to one another. Stands and fixtures about the room have been made available for guests attending the event, if anyone's brought pieces they might wish to share. The bar is stocked with an assortment of beverages, including a Raconteur special just for this occasion, and it is a tall and silent Zane efficiently slinging drinks for the evening. Though Elim sits behind the bar with him, he seems mostly intent on watching the room and recording... something, his business removed from that of drink-delivery. Fajra, meanwhile, keeps off to the edges of the event, toward the hall leading toward the permanent collection, also available to anyone who cares to wander.

The hostesses have dressed for the evening. Lianne and Khanne wear imperfectly matching--and entirely complementary--gowns of deep, star-speckled blue, one with a dusk-colored ombre rising up from one side, the other favoring brighter dawn hues. The marquessa holds the duchess' arm, intermittent murmuring turned the redhead's direction before the greeting of guests begins in full. A moment to breathe before the night truly begins.

Elizabetta, a disapproving lady-in-waiting, Lily, an aloof lady-in-waiting, 6 Grayson House Guards, Clark, an exasperated guard arrive, following Sabella.

Sam, who is a boy and definitely not a princess in disguise, Sabella arrive, following Niklas.

Venturo is dressed rather plainly. Almost. The long white sleeve shirt has the top couple of buttons undone, along with his black breeches. But it is the purple tricorn hat that is perched off kilter on his head, a tad too small for his head. "Marquessa. Duchess. You both have outdone each other tonight." Forward the man comes, offering a kiss to the cheek of each, before he steps off to the side, slipping into an easy stance near by where he too can keep an eye on the trail of guests to come in.

2 Keaton Huntsmen, 1 Healer Guardian, Merrygold, a human with many feelings arrive, following Reigna.

Stepping into the gallery with an air of curiosity comes Rylan. He stops a moment to check his cloak by the door, and then again to request a glass of wine - Nilanzan red if they have it - from the efficient barman, before turning into the room proper. Given there are few here so far he easily spots the two nobles, and approaches with a bow to both. "Marquessa, Duchess," he greets, echoing Venturo.

A gaunt young man with oily black hair and ice blue eyes, 3 House Mazetti Guardians arrive, following Braith.

Paris, a charming mercenary, Nomius, a deeply skeptical bloodhound, Caprice arrive, following Apollo.

Nomius, a deeply skeptical bloodhound have been dismissed.

Garibaldi, the Lycene swordbearer, 3 House Mazetti Guardians arrive, following Theron.

A gaunt young man with oily black hair and ice blue eyes have been dismissed.

It appears the custom in Jadairal is to be right on time. Not a moment early, not fashionably late, here is Zyanya. Perhaps she intends her complement to be the stern man who steps in behind her, dressed in blacks and blues to contrast her bright royal yellow and creamy jade stylings. Certainly, he maintains a strict lack of smile, which makes the Weija's seem all the warmer as she takes a moment to bow to their hosts. "With respect, it is my honor to attend. Thank you for opening these doors." Though whether she's aware of the significance of that remains to be seen--her study of the space, and those beginning to fill it, carries a tourist's curiosity, with no particular recognition of what any of this might signify.

Lance, a rebellious swan that likes to headbutt have been dismissed.

2 Keaton Huntsmen, 1 Healer Guardian, Merrygold, a human with many feelings leave, following Reigna.

Apollo comes in, escorting one Caprice Artiglio as if she is the actual Queen of the Compact, and for all anyone knows she might as well be. He pauses inside the door to fix a silk daisy that he didn't properly pin to his shirt, laughing as it almost falls - caught, of course. Quick, those hands. "I don't know what to expect, no," he says, and steps aside, clearing the door. His eyes skim the room, like he might be looking for someone - or he might just be taking in the attendance in general, getting an impression of the art.

It appears Alessia has come unprepared for the occasion OR she considers herself complementary to herself. Which could work, given her garb. She seems unapologetic either way, smiling warmly as she approaches the hosts. "My ladies. What a wonderful idea for an event." She gives the room a sweeping gaze. "And I love how you've chosen to dress." Her eyes glitter at the dusk and dawn theme.

Yes, the General brought a kitty.

Piccola is dressed in black silk. More accurately, she's dressed in a dress shirt with emerald buttons and a set of dress pants with green foxes embroidered on them. On one shoulder is a cupridium pauldron with floral filigree, polished up for the night. On the other, a bow and quiver are slung. At her waist? A sabre. And to compliment it all? A smoky-grey kitten appears to be perched between her pauldron and neck, napping.

The cat is apparently her date for the night as she queues up to greet the hostesses in turn.

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

Lygeia, a calligrapher and alchemist arrives, following Rysen.

There's a chatter on the street that had woo'd Ripley on his walk back to his forge and had him alter his path. His face is a little flushed and he's looking for something to drink not two moments after coming in. Scruffy, in need of an assault with a pair of scissors to his hair and beard but looking decently clothed, the craftsman gets derailed from his search by the paintings.

"...quite some time! I wonder if the exhibits will be different," Sabella is saying to Niklas as they come in, beaming a smile at the room as she hands off their cloaks to Elizabetta who then hands them off to someone else, "I think the last time I was here we ended up painting with our feet! Although it doesn't seem like this is that kind of gathering I suppose one never knows!"

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

Venturo gives a dip of his head towards Rylan, the man at least familiar enough to draw a touch of recognition from the showman. "Good to see you here." Out his tongue dips, wetting his lips in a moment of consideration as he watches the others filter in. Zyanya gets a rather intrigued look from the fellow, a tip of that stylish, purple tricorn hat cast her way, but with Piccola's arrival? It's another face familiar to the brewer. "General, so good to see you here! After your greetings, you'll have to see if the drink made especially for here might sit well with you."

Lianne's fingers set so very lightly to Venturo's arm as he dips in for those cheek-kisses. "As have you, mm? You do understand how difficult you make it for yourself by continuing to exceed expectations?" Her verdant gaze tracks the brewer's escape off to somewhere safer than the center of attention. Another measure of the man's luck. Her attention flits to the arriving whisper, smile brightening farther. "Master Rylan. I'm delighted you could attend. See what sort of trouble you've gotten yourself in with." From there, to Zyanya, bow answered with a low dip of her head and a good deal of curiosity. "Of course. It's good to have life back in these walls again." A smile, too, for, "Lady Alessia. Thank you. We've made some attempt to be thoughtful." Her gaze flits to Apollo and Caprice as they arrive, to the general with her kitten, to the others of varying degrees of familiarity. Her hand tightens slightly on Khanne's arm as her smile solidifies.

Venturo has joined the bar by the entrance.

It might be argued that Caprice is lacking in sparkling accessories - Apollo notwithstanding - to be easily confused but she's still walking tall, pleased, beside her escort, footsteps light. The flower tucked behind her ear is having better luck staying in place, so far. "I've only a hint and a guess, myself," she's responding, gaze flitting first across faces - familiar and un - before moving beyond them towards the gallery's walls.

Ripley has joined the well-illuminated perspective.

Pasquale has joined the bar by the entrance.

Pasquale turned up in blue rather than black and armed with far to many weapon-toys for such a social gathering. He dips his head when eyes he recognises turn his way but mostly seems to want to sit nearish the door and watch.

Dog the rat, Ugarte, Gilda arrive, following Fortunato.

Fortunato has joined the gloomier view of the gallery.

Dog the rat have been dismissed.

Gilda have been dismissed.

Rysen drifts into the Eidolon Gallery with the dark-haired Lygeia at his side, flanked by a pair of Inquisition confessors, carrying between them a large covered rectangle the size of a large painting. He makes his way towards Lianne, as he overhears her greeting her guests, though his eyes pass to the two paintings now hanging in the gallery. "Whiskey, My Lord?" asks Lygeia. Rysen nods. "Yes, thank you."

"Brewmaster Thayne," Rylan greets Venturo in return, with a smile. "How is the arm?" he enquires, having last seen the man getting it patched up by a Mercy. Back to Lianne, and he pats the bag he has with him. "My lady, where should we place our complementing gifts?" he asks, not seeing anywhere specific for such things to go.

Elloise marches in, tiny but determined in black umbra, and pulls to stop. "I am here for art," she announces without ceremony.

Rylan has joined the gloomier view of the gallery.

Fortunato slips into the gallery, a smudge in umbra, and takes up a high seat in the shadowed part of the gallery. His eyes are forward and sharp. Here to observe.

For her part, Khanne stands with the beautiful Marquessa on her arm, their dresses reflecting their own personalities, their own duality, and the place in the middle where they meet. She tilts her head towards Lianne when the brunette murmurs to her, and smiles before looking slightly surprised. She murmurs back, then smiles to Venturo. "Master Brewer. You are mistaken. We do not outdo one another, we complement one another." She gives Lianne's arm a fond squeeze and winks to the man then nods her head in greeting to Rylan. "Thank you for coming this evening." She leans back to Venturo, a small impish grin playing on her lips before he slips off and away from the incoming crowd.

She continues to greet guests as they arrive, nodding with a smile to Zyanya. "An honor to have you here tonight, thank you." Smiling to Alessia, Khanne comments, "what can I say? It is the perfect event for us to host together." She nods then to a couple Halfshav servants who come in, carrying between them a painting. "Yes, right over there is fine," she says, up-nodding her chin towards one of the easels.

Khanne drops Amidst the Ash, a large painting in a charred frame.

Zyanya vacates the entrance to make room for others. As she goes, she answers nods from Lianne, Khanne and Venturo with a deeper nod--not quite a bow, but similar in spirit. Curious scrutiny and other studies of that sort aimed towards her person are serenely accepted, borne with the grace of long experience. For these she has small smiles, and then a deeper one for Oros when the paid guardian secures for her a glass. As she drifts, on a course to survey the lone pieces displayed, she steals an Arvani custom and lifts a hand, small waves directed to those most familiar to her: Pasquale, Ripley.

Valerius steps into the gallery with Lady Rosalind and heads over to Lianne and Khanne. With a little smile and nod to them both, "Lianne, Khanne. You both look absolutely complimentary tonight. It looks to be a very lovely start to the event. May many faces have a chance to enjoy what you've brought together."

Lianne drops a pair of pawns from a chessboard, one white, one black.

Up Venturo's left arm comes, those fingers giving a wriggle of delight. "The splint just came off. Lucky, they say, to have healed so well." Such a crooked, bemused smile that graces his features at that. While he might be content to stand near enough the bar, his eyes? Are all for seeing just what is put out for additional display.

Samira arrives without fanfare, lingering on the outskirts of the crowd. She wears her usual white and black garb, but a splash of color is provided by the hairpins securing her dark tresses. Wayward strands of hair have already begun to escape, falling to frame her solemn face, but at least an attempt has been made. She seems most interested in studying the venue itself, although familiar faces among the crowd capture her attention and bring a look of relief. She waves to Caprice and Apollo, ducking through the crowd to make her approach. "Apollo, Caprice. Glad to see you both. Are you each other's complements?"

"A moment, Signore Thayne," calls the General out to Venturo before she makes it to the front of the line.

"Duchess; Marquessa." She bows to Khanne, then Lianne. "Thank you for the open invitation to this gallery." There's a brief pause after. "I am sure that my cousin will be along briefly. He would not want to miss this. But, if you would please excuse me -- " She sidesteps, and then draws away from the crowd towards where Venturo indicated she may have a drink waiting for her.

The kitten remains slumbering lazily on her shoulder.

The gathered are plenty already so when a star speckled and bedecked figure of Braith enters leading Theron in with a vibrant energy to announce her arrival, she laughs. Her eyes turn out over the gathered as she tilts her head and takes a moment to study that which is around her. Her hair shimmers with adornments like a black ebony field of curly space.

She notes Khanne and the Halfshav gets a lift of her hand. "Duchess," she calls out and is then more apt to slide her other arm into that of the Sword of Ostrtia's at her side. Tugging on him she brings him close to her side and notes Alessia. "Look at the turnout. Never something to doubt given the hosts."

Piccola has joined the bar by the entrance.

Zyanya has joined the well-illuminated perspective.

So many nobility! And Apollo - laughs. Veers toward one scruffy-headed jeweler. "Ripley!" he says, not tugging Caprice along but moving with her, of course. "I didn't expect to see you here." A glance to Caprice, then: "I didn't expect to see him here." He claps Ripley on the shoulder, leans in to kiss his cheek. "What sort of incident shall we have tonight?" And then Samira! Who gets the cheek-kiss, not the shoulder clap. A glance at Caprice, and he smiles. "Perhaps," he wonders aloud. "Though not always. I might be inconstancy to her always."

Familiar faces! Apollo and Caprice, a waves, hand up, enthusiastic and cheerful. Then Zyanya. A wave there too from the bearded jeweler then he gestures to the painting that he's in front of, brows going up l well-illuminated

Rysen drops The Fires of Inspiration, An Ecstatic Inferno.

Rylan takes Single Black Silk Sock from Ivy Hollow Bag.

Alessia gets Exclusive Cask of Raconteur's Beautiful Dualities from A chest painted like a midnight star-speckled night turning into the light of day.

"It's been closed for ages, Sabella. She will certainly have a new selection of gloomy paintings to look at! Perhaps a gloomy sculpture or two!" Niklas stops and looks at the painting of a man being flogged, then says, "See? Surprises around every turn!" He offers a cheerful wave to various people. "Hello, Fortunato Whisper! Marquessa Lianne! It has been some time! I painted a beautiful portrait of my sister strapped to a sinking, burning ship. Sabella really hates it. I should send it to you for review! Maybe I'll get in a mood eventually and paint my brother's crucifixion." He then gives Rysen an excited wave. "Ho, Lord Rysen!"

Rylan takes Single Silver Silk Slipper from Ivy Hollow Bag.

Rylan drops Single Black Silk Sock.

Sabella gets Exclusive Cask of Raconteur's Beautiful Dualities from A chest painted like a midnight star-speckled night turning into the light of day.

Rylan drops Single Silver Silk Slipper.

Rosalind looks around, not even dressed in her leathers tonight. When she steps with Valerius to Lianne and Khanne, the tall Ravenseye gives a large smile. Her scar quite noticeable but she herself is unbothered. "Hi! Oh Hi Duchess Khanne,"skunding cheerful. Rosa turns and sees. Oh oh! "Hi Apolloband Caorice,"wave distantly to them with a grin.

Merek makes a way into the place with his usual dark attire on, and looks around to people, then he finds a place to settle in.

Caprice gets Exclusive Cask of Raconteur's Beautiful Dualities from A chest painted like a midnight star-speckled night turning into the light of day.

Elloise takes Exclusive Cask of Raconteur's Beautiful Dualities from A chest painted like a midnight star-speckled night turning into the light of day.

2 Keaton Huntsmen, 1 Healer Guardian, Merrygold, a human with many feelings arrive, following Reigna.

Fortunato returns Niklas's wave, and then laughs, a swift bark of a thing. "What unpleasant subjects! But often, often unpleasantness is what we must paint to express the world as we understand it. I must ask if you ever paint your siblings in more joyful settings, however."

Piccola takes Exclusive Cask of Raconteur's Beautiful Dualities from A chest painted like a midnight star-speckled night turning into the light of day.

Familiar faces! Apollo and Caprice, a waves, hand up, enthusiastic and cheerful. Then Zyanya. A wave there too from the bearded jeweler then he gestures to the painting that he's in front of, brows going up and gestures to the painting he's in front of, as if welcoming the woman over. But there's a clap on his shoulder and the mans eyes widen. "Incident? No. Not at all. On my best behavior. Nothing sitting on my chest. Though I think the Duchess Mazetti's abyss in a bowl isn't sitting well. Gives Zyanya's nose tea a run for it's silver." Ripley beams a scruffy cheeked grin to the man. "Any word on Toad?" And Caprice gets a kiss to the cheek. "Caprice!"

Having exchanged greetings, Alessia moves aside to let others pass, her attention turning to the large painting being placed up. She drifts toward it, studying it with awe for a moment, only the sound of her cousin drawing her attention away. "Braith, Theron." She smiles warmly. "I didn't expect to see you here."

Rosalind takes Exclusive Cask of Raconteur's Beautiful Dualities from A chest painted like a midnight star-speckled night turning into the light of day.

Reigna has joined the bar by the entrance.

Taking a moment to set out his items, Rylan places together a single black silk sock, and a single silver silk slipper. For anyone who keeps even half an ear to the recent proclamations, the topical nature of his items is clear. That done, he takes his glass of wine with him to the shadowier part of the gallery, to watch people come in and mingle.

Apollo takes Exclusive Cask of Raconteur's Beautiful Dualities from A chest painted like a midnight star-speckled night turning into the light of day.

Valerius takes Exclusive Cask of Raconteur's Beautiful Dualities from A chest painted like a midnight star-speckled night turning into the light of day.

Reigna takes Exclusive Cask of Raconteur's Beautiful Dualities from A chest painted like a midnight star-speckled night turning into the light of day.

Rosalind has joined the well-illuminated perspective.

Harlen arrives, following Duarte.

Zyanya takes Exclusive Cask of Raconteur's Beautiful Dualities from A chest painted like a midnight star-speckled night turning into the light of day.

Merek gets Exclusive Cask of Raconteur's Beautiful Dualities from A chest painted like a midnight star-speckled night turning into the light of day.

Valerius has joined the well-illuminated perspective.

Rylan takes Exclusive Cask of Raconteur's Beautiful Dualities from A chest painted like a midnight star-speckled night turning into the light of day.

With the little ones left at the Manor to be tended to by the Mazetti retinue. Theron was pleased to sneak The Wife out for a night on the town. Turns out she too had plans of her own, and Theron found himself in the presence of art and artists of all various sorts. He blinks a moment getting his bearings, as if trying to discern how and when this all just happened. The act is likely ruined by the tugging of a smirk on his lips.

He too, waves an arm towards Khanne. He is tugged towards Braith's side and goes quite willingly, heading for the path of the poor recently shackled Alessia. "Cousin! Well, to be fair. It should be no surprise Braith is here. Technically it is no surprise I am here, as I go where The Wife Wills." Theron speaks as if Braith is not RIGHT THERE... in smacking range.

"On any the available stands or fixtures," Lianne answers Rylan with a gesture toward the available spaces around the gallery. Already, at least one poem is hung all by its lonesome on an otherwise barren wall. And more by the moment, it seems. To all and sundry, voice a little louder, she notes, "Venturo's made something nearing magical for us this evening, available at the bar. Should anyone care to perform a piece on the night's theme, please let me know. Elsewise, enjoy one another's company. And, mm, do be kind if I find myself magnificently distracted by all your loveliness."

On that note, Lianne catches Rysen's approach and brightens, "It's been too long. And too little, overall, by my measure. I wrote to Princess Helena just the other day, hoping for more cause for our paths to cross. I'm pleased to find I've created one of my own." She turns a smile toward Valerius, but her gaze tracks Fortunato, some mental note made in doing so.

Elloise looks like a child receiving presents as, after her arrival, MORE pieces of art are brought out. She has nothing to contribute except enthusiasm, but that she has in spades. "What a cunning little sock! Does it go with the slipper? Of course it does. So beautifully."

Caprice is easily guided anyway, content to follow where Apollo's leading especially as it's toward familiar faces. Ripley's wave is returned, a smile seeded and bloomed fully by the time they close with the jeweler. "A pleasant surprise indeed," she agrees, attention drifting distractedly to the painting he's standing near. But before she can add on, she's turning for Samira, mouth opening - paused in surprised consideration of Apollo's suggestion, "Sure," she chuckles quietly, "I can work with that. Good to see you!"

Reigna arrives a bit late, arm in arm with a young blonde companion. Their conversation is halted as Reigna takes a moment to scan the room, looking for familiar faces. She lights off in the direction of the bar, dragging her companion along with her.

"Incidents are best avoided," Zyanya murmurs as she tilts the glass given to her to study its contents. For a moment, so brief it might be easily overlooked, the flick of her smile shades rueful. It's lost quickly in an expression far more tranquil. Her focus drifts then, her drink left untouched, while she studies those items which are being brought out and arranged for display. The soft catch of her breath must surely be obscured by the louder proclamations of admiration.

In keeping with theme comes Duarte - the perfect complement to any party. Of course this 'art thing' (as he described it to his errand boy) may not be the specific type of party that yearns to be addorned by the likes of Duarte, perhaps the more cultured and refined character of some in attendance will complement him instead. In either case it's a winning proposition. And speaking of cases, yes, he will first help himself to the free exclusives.

Duarte takes Exclusive Cask of Raconteur's Beautiful Dualities from A chest painted like a midnight star-speckled night turning into the light of day.

As Lygeia returns with whiskey, Rysen smiles warmly at Niklas's greeting. "Good to see you, Your Highness," he replies. Rysen offers Niklas a brief, respectful bow, but is unable to stop from laughing at the prince's musings on his next subject for painting.

"It has indeed been too long," says the Crovane lord to Lianne, "and I am very glad to hear that you've reached out to Princess Helena. It feels like it's been an age since our poets have gotten together," he adds wistfully, "though I am very grateful you've invited us to the gallery." As Rysen speaks to Lianne, the confessors who accompanied him set down a painting somewhere near the others on display, and remove the fabric covering to reveal a painting of incarnate Lagoma by Willow Nightgold.

A flicker of a grimace on Apollo's features follows that pronouncement. "This is why I never eat before these sorts of things," he says. "Besides, half the time they got a whole spread, and I'm standing 'round wishing for an empty belly." Not... a common wish, perhaps. He glances at Caprice, gives her a warm smile that seems not at all inconstant, but perhaps he's a liar, too. "Shall we give our regards to the hosts?" he suggests, dipping his head at a few of the nobility as he recognizes them - Reigna, Pasquale, there at the bar near the entrance.

Samira's gaze flits toward Zyanya, a hint of recognition registering in her expression. She offers a polite nod to the Weija, if she happens to catch her eye, before turning back to Apollo and Caprice. The short Culler appears to relax slightly now that she's in the company of familiar faces, allowing a small smile in answer to Apollo's remarks. "Inconstancy. It's not a bad thing, being changeable." Her tone grows apologetic as she turns to Caprice. "We'll have to meet for more plotting soon. Even if it kinda seems like I'm all talk and no action these days. I'll have to do better, that's all."

"Greetings, Valerius. Apologies for not responding to your fairly recent note. I misplaced it in a pile of studies. Please do forgive me." Khanne shares a smile towards Rosalind then. "Thank you for coming! It is good to see our ward represented." And here, she nods towards Rysen as well. Her smile brightens when she hears Braith's voice call out. "Braith! Theron! So good to see you both!" Spotting a certain Fortunato, despite his seeming attempts to blend into the shadows, she calls to him, "I am -so- glad you have come." her smile for him seems a bit more mischievous than it has been for others. Spotting another, dear friend, she gives a soft smooch to Lianne's cheek and says, "I hate to part from my counterpart, but in night, we shall meet again. Excuse me a moment."

"Well I'm glad /someone/ pays attention to the goings on." Alessia says with a wink to Braith at Theron's words. "Though really Braithy you should take advantage and drag Theron to all sorts of places." She gazes at the inferno painting as she speaks.

Khanne has joined the bar by the entrance.

Monique arrives on the handsome arm of Giorgio, the Greenmarch garbed in a precariously split-skirt umbra gown, secured at the sides with silver rings, leaving a great deal of bronzed skin exposed. There's a momentary pause at the entrance, surveying the throng, and then her eyes fall to the art itself and there's a drawn in breath and a whisper to her escort, emerald eyes wide with awe and appreciation.

So great is the crowd, it takes Oros touching Zyanya's shoulder to bring her attention from art to congregants. She looks away from Lagoma's painting to the sellsword, who directs her attention on to Samira. Spying the woman, her smile grows deeper and she lifts her glass in a very Arvani salute--someone's been practicing native mannerisms! Practical, given the crush. Then her attention is dragged back to something said by those around here, something which leads to a startled glance at Ripley and soft laughter, hidden behind her empty hand.

Fortunato laughs back to Khanne. "I will not participate save as audience only, but I am delighted to be here. I would not miss it for all the wonders of Arx."

Ripley's exuberantly circling Zyanya and animatedly gesturing to Caprice and pointing to the Weijin woman's garment.

"Hush," Caprice bids the Culler, mouth pulling into another quick smile. "I'll carry my weight in it too; this week, if we can find a minute. Oh- let's," she's agreeing with Apollo then, a distracted glance to Ripley and an unfamiliar one to Zyanya. "I- will be coming back," she offers in a quasi-greeting to the woman.

Venturo seems clearly delighted by the company at the bar, a warm smile flashed as Reigna and Merry approach the collection of bodies congregating there. Up a hand comes, gesturing to that hat, the words the group shares lost in the throng of bodies.

"It's been an age since I've been in the capital," Lianne confesses to Rysen as she watches that painting set down, considering the piece as it's unveiled, gaze tracing over the dark orbs arched above her. Her study is interrupted by that kiss to her cheek, attention drawn fully to Khanne. Who is slipping from her fingers. "Can't promise I'll make it easy to find me again," she warns then blows a kiss across the growing distance. Catching Fortunato's laugh, her attention pivots again and, with a murmur of apology to Rysen, she heads in Fortunato's direction, drawing in close to speak something quietly as she hands something over. From maybe nowhere. All imaginary dresses should have pockets.

Lianne has joined the gloomier view of the gallery.

Giorgio Pontelaeus has never been to an art event before, but when he had received an invitation it hadn't taken the Pontelaeus long to discover that he simply didn't have anything better to do. Arriving at the side of Lady Monique Greenmarch, the young merchant's eyes go to the swarm of people already milling about, all of the faces he does not know. Only after Monique murmurs to him do his eyes go to the many paintings and then there is an obvious nod in appreciation before he murmurs back to Monique.

Fortunato's question is given due consideration. "Honestly, I painted my sister's rather grim end because the whole affair haunts me to this day and painting it felt like a bit of a release. I'd rather remember the Renatta who was my best friend than the one who was killed to teach Ford a lesson." Niklas smiles brightly. "Though if I ever feel the need to conjure the truly unreal perhaps I will paint Octavia smiling!"

In her perigrinations about the room, each installation enthused over as appropriate, Elloise finally fetches up next to Sabella. "Hello. I know you."

Fortunato speaks low to Lianne beside him, a parchment in his hand, then turns his attention to Niklas. "We often must deal with such hauntings and darkness with depiction, your highness. In time, I hope you may also depict your sister alive and loved. But I know the weight such nightmares bring." He quirks a smile. "Something to be said for the unreal, too."

Khanne calls out towards Fortunato as she sets up at the bar, acquiring a drink for herself and greeting Reigna with a hug, "Oh, you need not participate, Fortunato. But please do not leave before speaking with me?" And to Lianne, "I am always able to find you, my dear. Even in your highest towers." But then, then she is turning to the others at the bar with a look of surprise.

Giving Theron a look as he does say something that might well get a smack, Braith shakes her head and sighs. "I hope all is well," she remarks to Alessia. "That the adjustment to being attached is going smoothly. I can tell you there might be a few bumps." Hip bump to Theron on this. Khanne is watched closely with a flick of dark eyes when she slips away, a smile still brilliantly painting her lips.

The use of Braithy collects her quickly and she blinks, eyesquinting. "Is that what we have moved to now, Alessy?" It doesn't suit, she might add. "Well he tends to just go where I tell him so I can take any advantage I like."

Rysen bows to Khanne. "It's always a pleasure, Vala," he says to the Duchess, and concern touches his stormy eyes. He hesitatingly opens his mouth to say more, but when Khanne departs, he raises his whiskey and takes a sip. Turning again to Lianne, Rysen smiles. "You have been missed, Marquessa." Rysen then passes to look over the poem entitled 'Handedness,' while Lygeia comes to his side. Her gaze however lingers for a time on Willow's 'Ecstatic Inferno' painting.

Duarte happens upon the slipper and sock pairing. One arm crosses his chest. The other elbow rests on it and curled fingers give support to his chin. "Hmmmmmm...." he says as he gazes up the piece.

"Lady Elloise!" Sabella turns her bright smile on the Leary that approaches her, "I would hope so! How is your Marquessa? Really I ought to know since she's my protege but you're all so busy and honestly I find that delightful! Always working for the betterment of your people and the Compact! Are you someone that enjoys art? I happen to adore it although I am a terrible painter I have to confess. My husband is much better! Rather a marvel in fact."

Lianne's smile warms for that brief exchange with Fortunato, but she doesn't keep him further. For just a moment, the marquessa drifts, watching as the night starts to settle, as guests mingle and explore what art has been set on display, taking in identities and intersections with contented curiosity. This is nice, going well. Soon, she'll open the floor for performances, but another moment of just enjoying one another won't hurt.

Apollo draws Caprice along toward Lianne and - oh. Khanne has flown. Well. One host is better than none. He pauses, though, feet slowing as he nears the chiaroscuro painting, glancing at Caprice sidelong. Looks at the painting, looks at her, looks at it, at her. A smile spreads, not a murmur but a blaze of one. He murmurs something warmly, just there by her ear. Amused, bright, surprised, proud.

Monique laughs at something Giorgio has whispered, and slips a hand into the crook of his arm, tugging the merchant along away from the entrance and towards a familiar face in the crowd. "Alessia! I wasn't sure I'd see you here tonight but I'm so glad to. Finally, you can meet the Director. Master Giorgio Pontelaeus, the inestimable and incredible Lady Alessia Mazetti. Alessia, our Director, who made a serious and terrible error in judgement not taking you as a patron but for which we will forgive him eventually." The Minx steps back, allowing the two to meet properly, her eyes sweeping the crowd.

Watching Khanne be so busy at work gives even Theron a grin. "I thought our wedding was bad, poor Khanne. So many people to work through, she looks happy though." This seems to please Theron. "She's been a good friend to Mazetti." Alessia speaks and gains his full attention. "Do not encourage her, she loves to dress me up. While that has advantages, it has disadvantages! Still, she's worth all the fuss, for our children are amazing, and Eliran is the prettiest girl in the world."

He goes back to looking innocent as Braith gives him a look. He hip bumps in return in regards to her shot over marriage bumps. He stays out of the contest of nicknames, however. Choosing instead to admire how vertical these walls are.

Niklas has joined the bar by the entrance.

Elloise answers Sabella's smile with one of her own, nearly as effulgent. "She's well, we're all well. I've just got back from the Leaholdt and looking over the new navy...all of the boats float, thank the gods." Hands lift a little in a barely-supressed gesture of enthusiasm. "I do enjoy art! Ever so much. So many interpretations, so many ways to look at things...the sock, is it an incisive social commentary, do you think?" The smile is transferred over to Niklas as well, when his wife lauds his talents.

"Lessi." Alessia corrects Braith with a chuckle. "And I feel like the greatest bumps are far behind him and I." There's a wink at this. "But I'll keep myself alert. You'll have to walk that back when you get a second daughter, Theron." She swivels when she hears Monique. "Mo!" She greets, her gaze shifting to the man with her. "Ah, well met. I've heard wonderful things. I imagine you're excited to commence the role." She tilts her head. "Well it depends who the patron is." She chuckles, turning back to Monique.

"Alright, both guilty as charged then," Samira answers to Caprice, the hint of a grin returning. Zyanya's response to her nod earns a pleased look and reminds the Culler that she lacks a drink of her own. She goes off in search of one, making her way back toward Zyanya once she has managed to procure a glass. Dark eyes land upon the artwork displayed, studying it with an air of intensity but she murmurs a greeting to the other woman whilst perusing the art.

Catching trajectories of approach, Lianne starts toward Apollo and Caprice, all by her lonesome, her dawn-shining duchess off on the other side of the room, but pauses as the pair slow near that drawing, allowing them their moment without interruption. It gives her a chance to look across the room and, while she thinks nobody's looking, blow another kiss toward Khanne. And maybe angle a desperate look toward one of the men behind the bar.

"Oh forgive me," she teases back. Braith grins at Alessia and then turns her attention at Theron. "You enjoy it," she remarks as she adjusts the strap of her lute on her back. Nervous energy results her her shfiting her weight from foot to foot, though her eyes flicker across the room to note Apollo and a few others, not wishing to clear the room to greet she merely lifts a han dto wave in greeting. Monique's arrival to speak to Alessia draws her attention and she glances from the red head back to Alessia and finally Giorgio who gets a pleasant smile from the northern lady. She leans over to converse with her husband quietly, quickly giving his cheek a kiss after.

Caprice is not the sort to blush; she hasn't the complexion for it. But there seems to be a distinct pinkish undertone across her cheeks that is unlikely borrowed from any light source or clothing nearby. Given everything else that's interesting to study at the moment, how curious that she should find the floor so fascinating for those few moments! Still, hostesses to greet, artwork to admire, clothing to inspect - likely more discreetly than Ripley's study, but at least as enthusiastic.

Sipping from his glass of wine, Rylan lurks in his corner, watching people move and mingle, like the eddies and tides of the sea. Apart, moving, together, then breaking apart once more. He doesn't seem to have a lot to say, though he does study some of the items placed around the room from afar.

Managing not to stumble as Monique tugs him across the room, Giorgio drifts through the crowd and toward Lady Alessia. Once there and introductions have been made, Giorgio sweeps into a bow toward the Mazetti Lady, a smile finding its way to his features easily. "It is a pleasure to meet you at last, Lady Alessia. And yes, quite excited for things to get underway, but there is always work to be done. It must be perfect." His eyes shift toward Monique then before he says, "Ahhh, well. Prince Sebastian Pravus was the offer I ended up accepting." Eyes tracking toward Braith, he offers a bow of his head before saying, "Giorgio Pontelaeus. Minister of Economic Development for Tremorus."

Zyanya has yet to sip from her drink. Perhaps because Oros, being the fellow he is, provided her with a glass of whiskey. While Samira approaches, she is caught tilting the glass to give the appearance of drinking but it's quickly lowered to greet the artist, to incline towards her in an exchange of smiles, and softer words.

Apollo draws up with Caprice, rubbing the back of her hand there on his arm as they move, approach Lianne. His hand tucks in his pocket those last few steps, and he approaches with the smile still in his eyes, stops to bow. "Marquessa Lianne," he says. "What a success. Have you met the inestimable Caprice Artiglio?" He glances sidelong at his tailor companion, proud where she is blushing; complements indeed.

Kiera meanders into the gallery slowly, alone, looking about at the crowds of people many yet strangers. She seems to be opting for where to g ago until she catches sight of the slipper and sock, admidst all of the finer pieces of various art displayed and just shakes her haid laughing as she heads in that direction "There has to be something in the water back home, i swear

"Possibly." He offers for Alessia on the topic of his newborn daughter. "Mostly I'm just glad Braith isn't smacking me for giving away her title." It's his turn to hip bump Braith. "Anyway. Alessy has a ring now." He winks to his cousin, choosing the moment she is turning to socialize to sneak that parting shot in. For Braith he ponders and then nods. "Yes. Yes I do. You're the smarter of us... but at least my hair is prettier." There is a wink to Braith and he leans to listen at the quick private word she needs.

"Terrible decision," Monique elaborates to both Alessia and Giorgio, making a face that barely manages to keep from laughing. She glances aside to Braith, the grin remaining firmly in place. "Lady Braith, I think, if I'm remembering correctly? It's so good to see you again. Are you enjoying the display? Any piece in particular catch your eye?"

Valerius wanders through the crowd looking at the artwork that everyone has brought, then has a moment of realizing that he is missing a drink. Heading over to the bar to get one or three to return to the table with. A couple of nods to those that he recognizes with a quick hug before making a more direct approach to the bar.

Rylan has left the gloomier view of the gallery.

Rosalind is looking at all the paintings as she chatters on and on and..."I wish I could paint like some of these,"the red head says. "These are great! I bet they took hours!"

"Ah, I couldn't say a negative word about Sebastian." Alessia says with a smile, shaking her head. "But I'll definitely take Mo's compliment." She grins. "But Tremorus?" She asks, brows furrowing as she tries to place the name. "Is that a new house?"

Duarte still contemplates the slipper and sock pairing. His face has evolved from curious to erudite in the space of these many minutes. Kiera's approach and commentary throws his concentration and he looks over. Then he looks back to the piece and motions to the display. "Yes - I suppose the missing sock and the other slipper could be in the water somewhere..." then he curls his fingers under his chin once more. "..certainly has happened to me on one occasion..."

Moving out of the gloomier end of the gallery, Rylan approaches the stand with the sock and slipper on, just as Kiera is heading that way, noting her amusement. "I thought a little topical addition would be amusing, given the recent proclamation by Princess Alis and Princess Zara," he murmurs to the oathlander, his lips curved in a smile. "Protection and warmth, two of the most basic needs we have, and so. A complement."

Braith says in Northlands shav, "A pleasure, Lady Braith Mazetti and my husband Lord Theron Mazetti," she motions to the man at her arm as her head inclines ever so slightly to Giorgio. Stars shimmer in the black curls as she smiles, "Quite the position to take on. I have no head for numbers and admire those that so easily craft with them." The compliment given she squeezes Theron's arm and glances to Monique. "Yes, oh yes, it has been some time. I am enjoying it, I admit that I have only just gotten back out into social circles. We have had a recent blessing so this is a nice refresher. Vala Khanne is my patron so I certainly could not miss this," she remarks warmly.

"I admit I have not had a good enough look but I will definitely let you know which. And what of yourself? Do you favor one?"

Did Vitalis arrive with no complement? That he has arrived is testament to the complement he honors - that he is walking, talking, drawing breath. He pauses past the milling of folk at the entry, standing tall to survey the room, keen eye on those gathered, on what is on display, worn, hung, gestured at. Hydras have appeared in numbers, as they do. But it is the host he veers towards, one of them, both eventually, not yet moth to a certain candle. "Marquessa Malespero," bright and dark the greeting.

Vitalis has joined the gloomier view of the gallery.

Ripley turns away from Zyanya for a moment, hunting something and then finding what he wants, returns with a snatched up glass of red wine and is back beside the golden honeysilk clad woman, and passes over the wine, waggling it. "Trade?"

"A pleasure, Lady Braith Mazetti and my husband Lord Theron Mazetti," she motions to the man at her arm as her head inclines ever so slightly to Giorgio. Stars shimmer in the black curls as she smiles, "Quite the position to take on. I have no head for numbers and admire those that so easily craft with them." The compliment given she squeezes Theron's arm and glances to Monique. "Yes, oh yes, it has been some time. I am enjoying it, I admit that I have only just gotten back out into social circles. We have had a recent blessing so this is a nice refresher. Vala Khanne is my patron so I certainly could not miss this," she remarks warmly.

"I admit I have not had a good enough look but I will definitely let you know which. And what of yourself? Do you favor one?"

Apollo has joined the gloomier view of the gallery.

Warmth and merriment is had at the bar over something or another, Venturo's smile broadening into a lopsided affair that pushes a dimple into a single cheek. Yet it seems the man makes his farewells to this particular space of the gallery, stepping away as his hands tuck behind him, and it is the paintings that he begins to walk by, each one paused in front of to appreciate what is put down.

Caprice has joined the gloomier view of the gallery.

Venturo has left the bar by the entrance.

Merek looks around and looks to the complementing artwork and attire and all manner of things. Duality, "Ah, I thought we were supposed to give people compliments," the man would muse. He nods a bit to himself thoughtfully.

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

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

Pasquale has left the bar by the entrance.

Lianne refocuses on the approaching pair, smile warming. With a dip of her head toward Caprice, she answers, "I have not, though I do feel we've had something of an introduction already given the lovely piece--" Right over there. "--that my brother gifted me. It's a genuine pleasure." Brightening, she adds, "To see you both," and to Apollo directly, "I'm glad you were able to make it." Her attention doesn't linger more than a moment, drawn toward another's approach. She straightens--what little straightening there is to do, effortless as that perfect posture seems--flicks a quick look toward Apollo, then bows her head, smiling brghtly. "Lord Vitalis. A genuine delight."

Smiling kindly for Braith's introduction, Giorgio dips into a short bow toward her and Theron before glancing back to Alessia. "Tremorus, yes. It is relatively newly joined to the Compact, and can be found at the far southeastern edge of the Saffron Chain," he says before adding with a laugh, "I suppose it is almost as far as one might travel and still remain in the Compact."

When Ripley presents her with an option of swapping glasses, Zyanya hesitates only a fraction of a second, just long enough to be socially acceptable. Then she gladly exchanges her whiskey for the red wine the jeweler holds. "This is a kindness that will not be forgotten," the woman intones, solemn voice made a lie by the twinkle in her dark eyes. With the trade made, she clasps both hands 'round the glass and bows to him. On rising, a slight adjustment of stance brings Samira into the circle of attention, making many of what had been two. "I think there are no people so cruel to themselves and their work as artists," she tells the other woman. "We see perfection only in what others do, yes? Please, I will send Oros to bring it? For you?"

When Sabella greets Elloise Niklas turns her way and offers a bright smile. "Why, Lady Elloise, you do look wonderful this evening!" His eyes move up just a bit for a fraction of a second, double checking her eyebrows just to make sure he's not fibbing here. More than fifty percent there? Whew! "We did miss you in the city. Though we are very sorry about Lady Arcadia. She was a woman of tremendous energy and will be dearly missed."

"It truly is!" Sabella nods to Elloise, turning to look at a number of the selections on display tonight, "I do find it quite inspiring that two people can look at exactly the same thing but come away with entirely different interpretations! Like that sock! I look at it and I wonder where the other one is. Is it lost? Or was so much effort put into this one that the other is left wanting? Did the person who embroidered it run out of creative energy? Was it for a one legged person? The possibilities are endless!"

With a waggle of her finger, Alessia nods at his response. "Saffron. Right, I should have guessed." She smiles warmly. "Well I look forward to meeting members of the family." She glances around the room, before smiling apologetically. "I'm afraid I should return home. But it was wonderful meeting you, my lord. And seeing you again, Mo." She rests a hand on both of her cousins' arms. "I'll catch you both later." And then she's off.

"An exchange of messengers," Caprice confirms, "concluded at last in person. The pleasure is mine, Marquessa, thank you," sincerity melds with the formality of a curtsey and the woman is ready to move on lest they hold up the line.

Sirra, a very quiet maid, an indeterminate number of cats, 3 House Mazetti Guardians leave, following Alessia.

There is a polite incline of his head to Giorgio as Braith introduces him. It is his turn to consider the entries for tonight as Braith discusses them with Monique. A turn towards Braith after several moments. "Speaking of your patron, we should pester her directly in a little while. I know you miss her a little."

Though she stands at the bar, Khanne keeps glancing back to the rest of the gallery, looking to see who she might wish to talk to, or who might wish to talk with her. At one point, her gaze crosses Lianne. Khanne's hand lifts to catch a kiss and blows one back to her co-host, the gorgeous sunsetted evening as she is. She thinks she hears her name a time or two, and murmurs to the others, "I will have to mingle more in a little bit." Butnot just yet, it seems.

When Rysen finds himself beside Venturo, he smiles. "It's been a long time, Venturo," says the Crovane knight. "I'm glad to see you back in the city. Though I doubt it's news to you, the Raconteur breweries in Stormwall are flourishing. It's a shame Rukhnis isn't here, she always wanted to -" a number of messengers press through the crowd to Rysen, and he glances down at one of the missives bearing his cousin's seal of the Black Tree. "Forgive me," says Rysen, opening one of the missives. "I'm being called home," he says with a smile to Venturo. "I hope I can find you at the brewery here in Arx soon."

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

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

Kiera hms to Rylan "A fine notion indeed " she answers Rylan "I am glad everyone is maintaining a sense of humor amidst more serious matters" Kiera Wyvernheart, lovely to meet you " Then to Duarte with a twist of her lips" You frequently lose footwear while bathing?"

In contrast to Zyanya, Samira seems to be quite pleased with the glass of whiskey she has in hand. She sips it between quiet words exchanged with the other woman, cautious reservation now traded for a smile of earnest warmth. Ripley's approach and the kind trade of drinks earns a glance from the Culler followed by a belated realization that this is indeed a familiar face. "Ripley," she greets. Disregarding titles, apparently. Zyanya's remark brings her gaze swiftly returning, an emphatic shake of her head given. "You're entirely right. And I'm afraid it's impossible. I destroyed it," she admits with a chagrined shrug of her shoulders.

There's a musing look as Monique gazes around at the paintings. "It's impossible to say, I think. I'm a lover of art in all its forms. Do you suppose any of the pieces will be available for purchase this evening?" the Greenmarch asks of Theron and Braith both, even as she's bidding farewell to Alessia. "Bye, Alessia. I'll see you soon, hm?"

"You say that, and then I am abandoning you." Ripley gestures to Samira. "I'm going to go, before I have an incident and I promised my patron I would not have an incident." He throws back the whiskey into his mouth, swishing it around before swallowing. He holds the glass up to Oros. 'Good choice." He commends the man. "Samira! She's not delicate, but handle her gently. I like her. And her tea. And her Weijin. Some day I'm going to go there." There's a click of his tongue in quick succession one after the other and then he's edging for the door in the crowd.,

"I must confess, I had the sock and slipper made for this occasion," Rylan tells Duarte with a rueful smile. "To the tailor's bemusement, I'm sure. So you may rest assured, there is no missing partner for each of these." He then bows slightly to Kiera. "Rylan Emory, apprentice at Whisper House," he offers by way of his own introduction to both of them.

Valerius has left the well-illuminated perspective.

Valerius has joined the bar by the entrance.

"A new house, that means all new struggles and I wish you all the best," Braith says to Giorgio. Though art is calling and she makes a thoughtful sound. "I certainly hope so. I remember the last art gathering I believe they were not for sale either. It might be nice to come away this evening with a piece," she remarks. Braith glances from Monique up to Theron and nods her head as she adjusts the lute strap about her chest. "We should, but she seems to be taking a moment for herself right now." It is Alessia that gets a renewed and ready smile from the bard that comes with a returned touch. "Enjoy, Alessia, be well."

Fifty percent of the eyebrows present and accounted for, though perhaps not one hundred. Elloise' smile dims just a little when Niklas offers condolences. "Yes. She was. I do miss her terribly. But I didn't think she'd want me moping about at home for the rest of my days. Also I flooded the kitchen back home one too many times apparently, so here I am back in the city!" Socks are a little bit easier to talk about and her gaze drifts back to the odd little exhibit as Sabella presents her thoughts. "It's true, I often have a great deal of difficulty finding two socks that match."

"You never know when, or where, footwear may be lost," Duarte suggests with an open hand, rotated delicately toward the slipper display. "I think it's the artist's intent to..." then Rylan explains it. "Oh," the Count says.

Oros, validated, flicks a smile at Ripley when he takes the glass. The nod he bestows is tinted with formality stolen from his ward. For her part, Zyanya allows a flicker of disappointment to show when Ripley announces he's going. "I pray it will be so," she murmurs. "Go in peace, artist. Soon I will come visit and bring kinder tea." A ghost of that same disappointment lingers when she turns back to Samira. Destroyed artwork?! "...this is your decision," makes an attempt to accept the fact. "It will be like fallen blossoms, more beautiful in memory, I am sure. May I ask what was the subject?"

Apollo seems surprised to see Vitalis, face opening up with another sort of warmth. "You made it," he says, turning from his greeting to the Clement lord. There's a glance toward Caprice, flower in her hair, and a flare of his hand toward the silk flower pinned to his shirt, and he laughs, this bit of humor-semaphore likely legible to someone who knows him well: the same idea, two artists.

Piccola has left the bar by the entrance.

Pony, a tiny smoke-grey kitten with white points have been dismissed.

Arriving on the heels of a nattily dressed messenger who moves through the crowd like a homing pigeon, Kalani Seliki slips into the main room and pauses for a moment to survey the crowd and then orients on the pair of paintings that are currently on display. The Seliki physician drifts toward a position that allows her to look from one, to the other, and back again. Crowded room, yes, art on display!

Oh, Vitalis is moth-charmed after all. Undeniable fondness stirs when he notes that Apollo is with Lianne. "Guildmaster," he smiles. He opens his mouth, closes it, expression troubled briefly, scars warp his doubt into a scowl. Hesitation has him looking off up, eye falling on Alessia as she makes her way out, tracking the arc of her passage back again to ... Monique. And the Mazetti clan. He gives himself a shake and blinks at Lianne, "I've brought this," he draws a weighty tome from his satchel. "A complement at a loss without its counterpart." It is Beatrice's tome on Setarcan Law. "For the gallery if you wish, but," he gestures the volume at Lianne. He opens his mouth again, glancing at Apollo, lifeline, and back. He clears his throat, a bit at odd ends, "A fitting theme for a gallery so named, Marquessa."

"You know that is a very good question." Theron comments in response to Monique. "I am not certain. Hmm. Not even sure where I would start." Alessia departs before he can say much on the topic. "She escaped..." Theron intentionally sounds jealous, all while watching Braith side-eyed for her reaction to that with a smile. "Well, as she is. And you too have plans, lead on and I shall follow as you will, dearheart. We have all night."

That slow pace of the showman pays rapt attention to each piece that has been put down. One or two, such as the charred frame painting? It causes Venturo to linger longer, his features scrunched in a truly appreciating look. Realized by the man or not, his path actually takes him further into the gallery, disappearing into the permanent portion of the hangings.

Turning his attention back toward Braith as Alessia leaves, Giorgio chuckles and nods his head. "Yes, yes," the merchant says with a dip of his head. "All of the struggles of one so new to the Compact. Earning that needed trust. But, we have confidence that we can prove a valuable asset to the Compact as a whole." Looking toward Theron then, Giorgio says, "How are you enjoying the evening, Lord Theron?"

Vitalis takes A Codex of Setarcan Law, vol. III from a hydra-tooled black leather satchel.

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

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

"Sounds like a good plan of action, even if incidents can sometimes be fun. Cullers aren't known for our gentleness, but I think I can manage," Samira remarks to Ripley, good humor sparking in her eyes. "I'll want to hear all about when you do go, if you ever decide to return." She waves to the departing artist, then turns full focus back upon Zyanya. "It was meant to be an abstract study of light and dark. I wanted it to represent other facets of life as well - our good qualities and the parts of us that we tend to try to hide away. But it wasn't coming across the way I wanted it to. Maybe I'll try again sometime."

"But I like your bitter winter tea!" Ripley calls out over the room to Zyanya, a wave for Samira and then ducking out before there can be any Ripley induced incidents. Well. Almost. "I LOVE YOUR DRESS!" Both hands cup the sides of his mouth and it's yelled out in the general direction of someone wearing a dress of twilight.

Rysen gets The Fires of Inspiration, An Ecstatic Inferno.

Kiera nods "Such a wonderful set of skills whispers posses, even if some are not akin to my own nature. I do love thoughtful debate, though"


Ripley has left the well-illuminated perspective.

Suddenly at the bar, Piccola quietly holds up a hand as she notices someone by the door.

Is it a messenger? It could be a messenger. "I'm sorry, would you pardon me, please?" she interrupts suddenly, setting down her drink and moving away from the bar. "Something apparently demands my attention." Dry. Dry is the tone she uses to describe the reason for her departure.

No doubt she is irritated by the distraction, but such is life.

Monique's eyes catch on Vitalis from across the room and there's the barest nod and the faintest smile, acknowledgment of all things unspoken, before she glances to Theron and Braith. "Well, I see the Guildmaster over there and I've been dying to introduce him to Master Giorgio,?" She grins. "And I hope we can catch up soon in a place less crowded. Giorgio, will you come and meet Guildmaster Apollo? Or I can leave you to fend for your more than capable self?" she offers to the merchant prince.

Less familiar but genuine in its warmth, Caprice's glance towards Vitalis upon his approach ends on a curtsey and possibly a murmured greeting but she's content for the moment to leave one ear to the nearby exchange, gaze rowing slowly over the sea of as-yet-unknown faces nearby.

Reigna has left the bar by the entrance.

"It is difficult to capture what comes to us behind our eyes," Zyanya admits to Samira. "I will mourn not seeing your attempt but hope to see the next. There will be facets to admire in it even if it does not match your vision, yes? Worthy facets even if it does not satisfy your inspiration. I had thought to perform tonight here but did not prepare. I will pray that the inspiration is enough to carry me through." She pauses for a beat. "Without disappointing. It is in Jayus' hands whether my skill is enough." A solemn confession but one soon chased with more quiet laughter, for Ripley's /loud/ leavetaking.

Pony, a tiny smoke-grey kitten with white points leaves, following Piccola.

"I am sure all well go well," Braith says to Giorgio, the smile genuine as she leans into Theron and watches him converse, a curious look crossing her face. Her attention shifts to Monique and she follows the other woman's gaze to that of Vitalis. She offers a smile cross the distance and a raise of her hand that leaves Theron's arm.

"I would enjoy that. Enjoy the art and your minglings. Again good to see you, Lady Monique and a pleasure to meet you." She nods to Giorgio before tugging lightly on Theron's arm to guide him over towards where Khanne has taken up her post.

"Vala Khanne," she says as soon as they get near."

"Always available for a lively debate," Rylan agrees to Kiera's comment with a smile, then bows again to both her and Duarte before withdrawing, depositing his empty wineglass on the bar and easing out of the gallery.

Sabella jumps just a bit when Ripley yells at her, turning about for a moment a little bewildered, but seemingly pleased as she sets a hand on her tiara, "Who was that?" She seemingly asks the crowd, looking around, "The King had this one made for me, you know."

Merek seems to be just watching people, and listening, and looking at the place.

Lianne's gaze flits, ever-curious, about expressions and gestures and glances aside, taking in what she can without any apparent comment or concern of her own, for doubts or scowls or secret languages. When Vitalis moves to draw someting from his satchel, though, all of her attention focuses on him, on that book. /A complement at a loss without its counterpart./ Her eyes water before she can stop them, the smile which rises promptly in the wake of that reflex not quite enough to banish those unshed tears. "I expect I might be a bit selfish with it," comes quietly. Lips part to start to say something more, but she stops and purses her lips instead, studying the scarred man. The words which follow don't quite carry across the whole room.

After studying both pieces, and giving a quiet exhale of appreciation for both, Kalani looks around again and spots a number of familiar faces and threads her way through the room to where Sir Merek is standing and smiles up at her fellow physician. "Sir Merek, good to see you again. What do you think of the paintings?"

Elloise flurries a laugh when Sabella is called out. "It is a very lovely tiara. And dress, of course. Who was that?" Her eyes go wide and she laughs again, curls dancing with the motion of her head as she looks to the door and back. "Oh! I get it! /Compliments/!"

Sorrel is late, but curious. She drifts in to the party, just looking at people for the moment, not yet really interacting with anyone.

Looking around toward Monique, Giorgio follows her gaze over in the direction of Apollo before nodding his head. "Hmm? Yes, of course. I will certainly meet with whoever you think I ought," he says with a smile before looking back toward Braith and Theron and offering a wave of farewell. "It was good to meet the both of you. Perhaps we will speak again in the near future?" Then he moves to follow at Monique's side where she might lead.

Kiera hms thoughtlfully as rylan leaves, turning back to Duarte "I suppose I should look at something other than footwear . Have you a recomendation?"

"It is difficult. I was attempting to convey that those darker parts are necessary for various reasons - we all have them - but it ended up seeming a study of opposites rather than complements. If ever I redo it, I promise to let you see it, even if I end up hating the outcome," Samira vows with a wry grin that is soon hidden behind her glass for a quick sip. "A performance similar to what you and your mother performed at the Jade Moon's opening? I would've loved to see that." She nods, an emphatic gesture of agreement. "It's always that way, isn't it? Praying that our inspiration and skill might be enough to make something impactful." She stifles a snicker at Ripley's loud exit. "At least he was yelling compliments. It could've gone in such a different direction." This noted aloud. Perhaps she's thinking of rambunctious evenings in the Murder.

Merek seems to be settled into a seat, nodding to Kalani, "Ah, they're alright, I thought we were coming by to pay compliments to people," he notes.

Duarte is now prepared to move on, the magic and mystery of meaning behind the singular slipper/sock pairing forever ruined by the explanation of its creator. Duarte slides over, then, to a drawing. Nibbles on his lip. Gives up... "I recommend the bar," he says to Kiera with a weak smile while scratching his head. He then makes his way in that direction.

Duarte has joined the bar by the entrance.

There's something terribly pleased, when Apollo sees the reaction Lianne has to the book he didn't know was coming (from the lord he wasn't sure was coming). The quiet exchange that follows has him softening, looking back and forth between the pair. A step is taken back for space, and he half turns, scanning the artwork, looking at his companion. "Any favorites yet?" he asks, at a murmur. Asking about favorites with some artists is like asking if parents have favorite children. And then - there's Ripley, shouting about a dress and a tiara he loves. Apollo laughs, shakes his head. Does he notice Monique and Giorgio veering their way? Maybe not, but he's not so occupied it'll be trouble to speak with him.

"Oh well enough. Admittedly this is not typically my sort of affair." Theron smiles brightly at Giorgio even as he turns that intense gaze of his upon the taller man. He turns to gesture towards Braith. "But it is good to get my wife out and about, circumstances locked her up for a little while." A pause. "Children do that." There is a brief wink and as Monique mentions the Guildmaster and introductions, he follows her gaze. His expression is a little flat briefly, though the source seems not to be Apollo. The expression is very brief, as Braith tugs his arms. "Pleasure meeting you, Sir. Both of you, enjoy your evenings! I am being summoned again." He does not sound too terribly put out by a tugging Braith, in fact he is grinning. So immediately he follows her guideance towards Khanne. When close enough inclines his head deeply. "Lady Khanne, always a pleasure."

"Braith!" Khanne says when the woman draws near, holding her arms out as if hoping for a hug. "I haven't seen you in so long!" Has this redheaded woman seen anyone recently??? Eyeing the lute, she gasps, "are you hoping to perform?" Khanne rises to her full height, but that's not high enough. She climbs up onto the foot rail of the bar to get just a touch higher. "Attention!" she calls out, lifting a pale, willowy hand into the air. Lady Braith Mazetti is here with her lute! Surely, with enough applause, we can get her to perform for us?" Khanne starts to clap her hands together, beaming a smile towards Braith.

And thus, Monique is dragging Giorgio over to Apollo, the umbra of her gown a dark cloud flaring behind them as she approaches. There's a polite pause as the Minx awaits a break in conversation, mindful of the busy man. And then she's interjecting, "Guildmaster?" And there is a wealth of warmth in her voice for the greeting. "I wanted to introduce you to someone you most certainly ought to be working with in the future. Recently joined us from the Saffron Isles, Master Giorgio Pontelaeus. Giorgio, the Guildmaster of the Crafters Guild here in Arvum, Apollo Oakwood, whose creations steal breath, so make sure you mind yours."

"He is very brave." If it's to also be a night of compliments, Zyanya will lend her own to the pot. But to the earlier topic she returns afterward, and dips her head to Samira in acknowledgement. "Without music to give a veil to my mistakes and my flaws. But similar. There is a very thin line between what is opposite and what is complementary," she remarks, taking care with her enunciation, drawing the word out more slowly to be certain it's correct. "I recognize the inspiration. It is my own as well. The advantage of poetry is if I do poorly it does not linger as a painting does, yes?" This jest ends with Khanne's announcement and the Weija turns, standing beside Samira to look from hostess to the woman summoned by that call.

Monique has joined the gloomier view of the gallery.

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

Kiera has met Braith Mazetti but once in passing, yet shoots the woman a look of sympathy as she is placed on the spot

Giorgio has joined the gloomier view of the gallery.

"Oh, a lute?!" Duarte speaks up, loudly, in his fluid and silken Setarcan accent. "Please, yes!" and he claps and claps and then places two fingers between his lips and produces a sharp, loud whistle.

"Music!" Elloise' delighted cry ends on a high note as Khanne encourages Braith to take the stage, and she joins in the applause with the vigor of someone who believes in fairies.

Valerius has three glasses of wine, two in one hand and a third which he is drinking from. Somehow is juggling them quite well, and as he spots Kalani heads in her direction.

Khanne waves her hands upwards, trying to get more people to applaud, before she begins clapping once more. Still beaming, she looks to Theron. "It is good to see you too, Lord Theron. I hope you do not mind me forcing your wife into the center of attention."

The large hug offered is routined with gusto from Braith. She gives a tight hug to the Vala. "Too long but duties and responsibilities keep us both apart. I look forward to when next we can meet. I have so many questions," she begins and then glances down at the lute strap. "I had made something if I am honest but not sure as to where to play or..." Oh. Oh no. Braith watches in horror and then concern for a moment as Khanne climbs up on and thus she is reaching up to make sure the Halfshav does not spill over. Clearing her throat, Braith remarks, "I suppose the stage is right here then," she remarks.

Glancing to Theron she removes the lute from her back and brings it forward, quick to adjust the strings as needing, tuning it for a moment before she sets fingers to strumming out a quick trill that introduces the verses that follow.

Created chaos and well tended order
Stand side by side in so many forms
From winter to summer and death to life
Wild abandon to a soul that conforms.

In every difference lies the contrast
In loud and strong to meek and small
Its the space between the deftly informs us
Of the abject rise and the lofty fall

Dark to light
Morning to night
Warm to Cold
Young to Old

We dance through time with the shades of life

The strong warrior and the wise old sage
Have wisdom in their own different ways
In brilliant white or in the darkest black
The path is ever seen in contrasting ways.

The vibrant sun stands apart of the cool moon
Dripping silver instead of the glimmering gold
One can not exist in glory without the other
Or paint legends in colors wondrous to behold

Dark to light
Morning to night
Warm to Cold
Young to Old

We dance through time with the shades of life

It is in the differences of being that we can finally see
What stands before us in our passing years
From babe to elder they share one thing in common
They all smile and laugh and they all shed tears

What stands apart does not make us so different
Its more strange and unique in all of its hues
Celebrate the contrasts that color the world
Or you all will forget what it means to be you

Dark to light
Morning to night
Warm to Cold
Young to Old

We dance through time with the shades of life.

Lianne's attention snags on her co-hostess, gratitude fairly easily read in her features. It may be simply to facilitate the requested applause that she surrenders the tome to one of the nearby plinths, but it may, too, be an acknowledgement of Vitalis' thoughts on it. It belongs on display tonight. Hands thus freed, she claps for the musician and seems, in truth, grateful for the moment to listen.

As Monique introduces him, Giorgio offers a slight bow toward Apollo and those others present around the Guildmaster before he says, "Guildmaster Apollo, it is a pleasure to meet you. Even not having been in the city any longer than I have, I've heard of the quality of your work. I hope one day to see it in person myself!"

Braith checks charm and performance at normal. Braith is successful.

Apollo turns to that introduction - head tipping at Monique - a thing he corrects into a bow and a smile when he understands the direction the summons is going. One might imagine that sentences starting with 'Guildmaster?' oftener result in him having to engage in some Judicious Problem Solving. "Lady Monique," he greets her. "Stunning as ever, and kind to make an introduction. Master Giorgio - nice to meet you -" a soft blink and a smile punctuating the sentment. "An artisan, are you?" he asks - again, filtering to the most common reasons for introductions. He quiets, though, turning to listen to Braith sing, when the lute starts up. His answer to Giorgio drops to a murmur to be polite.

As Venturo steps back into the gallery, he takes up a spot in the lesser illuminated section of the place. Those pale green eyes fall upon Braith, quietly listening while the performance begins to pick up.

"I've been enjoying the living artwork," Caprice admits towards Apollo. Further commentary waylaid as others approach, she cheats out from current company to join in the applause - first to encourage the performer, then again in appreciation for Braith's string and songwork.

"Well in that case, allow me to compliment you on your skills as a physician - which is absolutely a trained thing. And your height, which is not trained but by comparison inherited physical traits," Kalani replies after taking a moment to consider a contradictory set of statements. She also takes that thinking-time to acquire wave a greeting and smile to Monique and Piccola, before the latter takes her leave. "Have you had anything to drink?" she wonders of Merek just as she also spots Valerius - and his juggling of multiple drinks - and grins in his direction. "Though the drink portion of that question may become moot in a moment."

Zyanya receives a light tug on her sleeve from Oros. Turning her head, the man leans down to murmur something to the Weija. A small nod is given and her glass handed over. She murmurs, "Please forgive me, I must go for now. But it is always my pleasure to see you, Artist," to Samira, in shades of apology. Under the watchful shadow of her guardian, the Weija withdraws from the crowd and makes her way towards the exit.

Zyanya has left the well-illuminated perspective.

Oros, a stern swordsman leaves, following Zyanya.

Merek nods a bit to Kalani, "Nothing to drink at the moment, all the same thank you, you are nice also," he notes, smiling.

Lianne is overheard praising Braith: Magnificently thoughtful and very well-played.

Rosalind is sitting still, drinking her glass of whiskey, talking away. There's a smile on her face as she does so, nodding as if she agrees with someting. "Oh! My favorite is the one with the bright flower."

"Nice?" Kalani retorts with a grin aimed at Merek, "As in, just good enough so therefore 'Nice' will do. Or Nice as in, 'Oh, that's nice' when accepting a cup of hot cocoa on a cold night. Or 'Nice' as in, 'Not awesome, not terrible, but just middle average'?" she wonders, tone of voice going playful with her fellow physician. "I think I need to get you a drink, it might make you loquacious."

Though exuberant in her greeting and introduction of Braith, Khanne calms when her protege begins to play and sing. She leans her back against the bar, smiling as she listens to the beautiful song, lyrics so fitting for the evening. "I knew you would shine..." she says when Braith finishes. Applauding again, this time for the amazing performance, Khanne says, "thank you... thank you so much for sharing that. You are brilliant!" Looking around the gallery, she says, "and please, if anyone else wishes to recite or perform or what have you, do let us know."

Duarte settles his drink down to the bar and claps enthusiastically. "Stunning talent," he commends, "A real treat this evening. Thank you." All praise to Braith, of course, and then a searching over of the attendees from his vantage point and perch at the bar.

Khanne says, "Oh! And, there are still LOVELY bottles of the Raconteur's special brew available in the chest over there!"

Khanne is overheard praising Braith: Her music is the rainbow that shines through rainy days. Beautiful!

Kiera catches sight of Valerius as he makes his traversal with a chuckle and a shake of her head before listening enraptured as Braith sings and applauds heartily as the woman finishes.

"Mine as well," Samira responds to the departing Weija, her gaze momentarily following Zyanya's exit before returning to the action unfolding. As Braith's tune comes to an end, she joins in the applause. Khanne's invitation for others who wish to perform has her taking a few shuffled steps back as though her intention is to blend in with the crowd. Eyes alighting on Venturo, she offers a bow of her head. "I see now why you mentioned this event and the venue. It's beautiful here. And it's clear the city boasts plenty of talent."

Kiera is overheard praising Braith: a lovely song and sentiment so needed in these times

"Well, I may have had something to do with that in a way." Theron speaks to Khanne in regards to her not seeing Braith in so long. Then Khanne puts Braith into the spotlight, and he is grinning for it. "Oh not at all, she's very good." The Sword of Ostria is practically beaming at his wife for her sudden attention. When she looks at him as she removes the lute, he does his best to look absolutely innocent. It's not likely convincing.

The smartassed smile goes away though, replaced by a warmer smile one that likely is reserved just for his wife as he forgets where he is listening to her sing and play. His hands come together as soon as it is polite to applaud, his head looks to those gathered for several moments observing before looking back to Braith and giving her a wink.

Merek nods a bit to Kalani, "I would like a drink, I appreciate it," he notes. The man doesn't seem enthusiastic, he often isn't though he's appreciative at least.

Theron is overheard praising Braith: Prettiest and Best Lute player you ever will see.

Ellani, the palm sized spider arrives, delivering a message to Apollo before departing.

Sabella applauds when Braith finishes her song, saying to Elloise, "Isn't she lovely? She's part of the Bard's College! If you ever need any instruction in song you should look there. I know you're very into..." she pauses, trying to find the right word, "finding creative ways to solve problems, so I'm not sure if you'd ever need but you should at least stop by, I think they have a mosaic you'd rather enjoy."

Stepping back from her performance, she carefully places the lute back in place. Its settled once more upon her shoulder and across her chest. Braith gives Khanne a smile and a deep inclination of her head. "Such creations like the ones here can not be possible without the inspiration of those like you and the Marquessa. Thank you for inspiring." She dips low, her skirts gathering at the floor below her before she rises. She looks eager to see another performance.

She looks delighted and flushed after the sharing of her work. "Thank you, Khanne," this said softly as she looks to the bar. "What are you drinking?" She asks.

She bows to those who applaud, graciously thankful. "Come a drink," she expresses to Theron, motioning him closer.

Kiera is overheard praising Rylan: a droll sense of humor is to be ever appreciated

It's when Samira catches Venturo's focus that the man steps out from his watching spot, even if just a touch. That smile flashed towards her is warm, head dipping into a small nod. "The Marquessa has always known how to make an event, and pairing her with the Duchess? It is a recipe for a scintillating evening. I'm glad you could make it."

Niklas nods in response to Sabella's statement. "I often spend time at the college when trying to avoid Liara. Whenever I hear someone wants to talk to me about Crownland incomes it is time for me to quickly disappear. The work I do as Mockingbird of the Bard's College is more suited to me since it mostly involves telling people how great Nightingale Gianna is and then drinking as much as I'd like while playing a lute."

Ellani, the palm sized spider arrives, delivering a message to Apollo before departing.

Theron is overheard praising Khanne: For providing for artists of all kinds.

Theron is overheard praising Lianne: Also for providing for artists of all kinds!

Valerius is overheard praising Lianne.

Elloise listens, quite rapt, and applauds even harder at the end of the song than at the beginning. "Very fine," she agrees with Sabella. "I can't carry a tune in a bucket, but perhaps I might try my hand at a lute one day. I wonder how many strings would be too many strings?" As Niklas chimes in, she taps a lace-gloved fingertip against her lips thoughtfully. "That does sound sppealing."

Kiera is overheard praising Khanne: an outstanding event

Valerius is overheard praising Khanne.

"Don't sell yourself short," Lianne calls across the room, catching Venturo's compliment. "You're partly responsible for all of this as well." She murmurs a soft word of apology to those closer and steps forward, aiming to snag some attention from the remaining crowd. "I don't know how many of you are familiar with the story of how Venturo and I came to work together. I'm sure he'd tell you that his luck outmatched my skill, but I'm the one with the inestimably competent seneschal and the finest brewer and, by my measure, storyteller in Arvum." Her brows pitch upward in challenge, eyes set on her protege. "Of course, I've been hearing some interesting stories about what sort of trouble you got yourself into while I was away in Nilanza. If you'd be so kind, could tell us about that fire you miraculously escaped?"

Kiera is overheard praising Lianne: an outstanding event

12 House Velenosa Guards, Ibasia, the Velenosa Lady-in-Waiting, Ellani, the palm sized spider, Sir Thad Quackington arrive, following Jaenelle.

"Marquessa Lianne is truly very inspiring. This was mainly her idea, one afternoon when I was lucky enough to visit with her. But such a lovely idea it was, I couldn't not go all in for it. If I am honest," Khanne confides, "I would love to see some sort of cultural evening such as this far more often. On a semi-regular basis even..." Lifting her glass, she says, "oh! Beautiful Dualities! A brew made special by Venturo just for this night! Have some!" Smiling at Theron, she adds, "you too! You man lucky enough to be married to my protege."

Handing one of the glasses of wine to Merek, "Here," Kalani says with a smile then lightly taps the edge of the glass she's holding against the one she's handed to Merek. "Cheers. To a night with art, music, people, contrast and compliments. Sir Merek, have you met the Marquis Valerius Malespero?" she offers the introductions with a tip of her head. "Sir Merek and I are both physicians, he's also a friend of my cousin, Lady Peri."

"Me? I'd never. However," Pale green eyes dance with mischief, the quip ready upon the silver tongue of Venturo, "If you wish to take the side of luck in how things turned out for you, Marquessa, far be it from me to stop you." Such an innocent smile blossoms to Venturo's features, but at that request? His chin dips up a touch, glancing around the room with a soft 'mmm'. "Only," Comes the playful banter, his hands loosening from their hold behind his back, "if you agree not to interrupt with claims that it was skill that saved my hide, rather than favorable fortune."

Valerius has a moment of playful shock as Kalani swipes the two glasses from his delicate balance in carrying them. Then turns to Merek, a sip from his remaining glass, "A pleasure to meet you Sir Merek. Two physicians in the gallery then? Are we preparing for a secret cake massacre?"

Khanne blinks and looks towards Venturo. "Fire too!?" She looks towards the painting she has on display and back to Venturo.

"Seems so. I'm glad I made it, too," Samira answers with a faint grin directed to Venturo. When Lianne addresses the crowd, the Culler devotes full attention to the Marquessa, brows lifting. Her interest has been piqued, it seems. Steadily sipping at the glass of whiskey in hand, she affixes a curious look on Venturo and falls silent to await his recounting of the story.

Khanne is overheard praising Lianne: I am honored to help this stunning woman host an equally stunning event.

Elloise is overheard praising Khanne.

Elloise is overheard praising Lianne.

Lianne drops A Codex of Setarcan Law, vol. III.

Rosalind has left the well-illuminated perspective.

Rosalind has joined the bar by the entrance.

Apollo is briefly distracted by the appearance of a bright eyed apprentice, who murmurs in his ear some sort of... something that makes his eyebrows do funny things. He glances toward the bar, then returns his attention to those in his orbit, watching as Lianne drifts away to do hosting things. "My weight in dragonweep!" he says, and shakes his head. "A compliment indeed." A night for them. He turns to murmur with Giorgo a moment - but there's that apprentice again, and there... is a longer conversation to have. "Beg your pardon, I'll just be a moment." Business... apparently waits for no-one.

Ellani, the palm sized spider arrives, delivering a message to Apollo before departing.

Merek looks between Kalani and Valerius, with a nod along, "Merek, it's a pleasure. I don't think we are, never know when you might need people though," he notes, while he takes a sip of the wine.

Merek adds, "Thank you," for the wine.

Lianne presses a delicate hand to her starry chest and assures Venturo, "I would never." She's lying, of course, and making no attempt to hide it, those big green eyes not convincing anyone of her innocence, overplaying it as she is. "I /did/ find myself rather concerned for your safety. I'm sure it was nothing but cleverness and resourcefulness which lead to your safe escape."

Jaenelle sets her spider down and sends the delightful thing with a small piece of parchment wrapped within spiderwebbing over to Apollo. Apparently she decided to send the missive personally, or maybe she didnt know he was here but it just so happened to work out in her favor! She missed the event, though came late anyway to cheer on two of her favorite people, the Hostesses!

"Is there cake?" Kalani wonders, promptly, looking around with bright eyed interest. "Is it like the ne at Lady Mabelle's party? If that's the case, I'd be happy to perform emergency surgery on the cake and take it back to my work room for further study and examination."

Bar for a drink, there are worse instructions. "Oh, you have no idea, Lady Khanne... sometimes I admit I forget just how lucky I am." A wink for them both and Theron is moving to get said drinks to allow for Braith and Khanne to talk quietly post-performance. He's going to follow the recommmendation and go after the suggested brew made by Venturo to try and bring back for them. He raises a drink towards Lianne for her part in hosting tonights event. For now he's just going to quietly observe those about him, and the various things on display.

Rosalind has just moved but then--"That is the most adorabe spider I have ever seen,"she excited exclaimes. She watches as it makes its way toward Apollo, grinning. "Really, so cute!" She goes to for a drink before she hears Kalani too, perking. "Cake?"

A knowing nod is cast towards Khanne, "Fire, too. It is a wonder I didn't come back in ashes." A soft snort escapes him for Lianne's words, but he picks up the part of that story easily. "It was in the fall of last year. The heat of summer is truly scorching in the south, and in the south eastern coasts of Arvum where I found myself? It was particularly dry. I was," A beat of a pause, those pale green eyes sweeping over to look at Lianne with a truly angelic appearance, one that no one should believe. "spreading the good word of House Malespero to some quite enthusiastic members of a village in hopes of creating trade. However, it seems I came at quite the inopportune time,"

Up his hand lifts, grabbing the purple tricorn hat from his head, pulling it down to press over his heart. "With the drought, harvests were tough, and apparently this was the precise time a group of raiders decided to storm the place. Torches in hand, it was dry as kindling, and the two story house I found myself in? Soon was burning brighter than the summer sun. Trapped, with no way out."

Theron gets Exclusive Cask of Raconteur's Beautiful Dualities from A chest painted like a midnight star-speckled night turning into the light of day.

At the announcement of a brew being made special she pays attention as it its pointed out. "Sounds like that is the drink for the evening," Braith remarks. She glances across at Venturo once she figures where he is and nods her appreciation towards the brewer. But Theron is alread on the case and the bard is grateful to remain where she is, smoothing her hands to the starlit dress as she hums faintly to herself in the idle moments.

"Oh my Gods!" Duarte intones with suspense. Fingers of one hand to his mouth, other clenching a whiskey glass, as he listens enraptured to Venturo's story...

Along came a spider. Siri - that's Apollo's apprentice - is a very exceptional assistant, but two spider-delivered missives is her limit, and when she /physically grabs his arm/, he glances around - down, closes his eyes. Sighs. "I've got it, Siri, thanks," he says. And crouches to - not collect a missive, no, but offer a hand to the spider. "Hello, Ellani," he says, not otherwise known for his bravado. "Why don't we go talk instead, mm? Your poor legs. I hope she's feeding you nicely." Up, up, up on a shoulder. This is all normal. This is fine. With an apologetic glance at those he was with, he slips aside to go find Jaenelle.

Apollo has left the gloomier view of the gallery.

Lianne dips a nod to Theron at the drink lifted her way, her smile a little odd for just a second before her attention resettles expectantly on Venturo. Nodding along with the details, her eyes go wide at the mention of /raiders/, but what she calls over is, "I'd heard it was an inn? Or are you rescuing barmaids from their own homes these days?"

Valerius turns to look for this cute spider that Rosalind is talking about and spots Jaenelle, quickly turning back to Kalani, Rosalind, and Merek. "Excuse me a moment." He then heads over to Jaenelle, carefully watching for Ellani.

Taking a sip of her drink, Khanne's eyes are riveted (mostly) on Venturo now, waiting for a story. She is paying attention to those around her though. In her periphery, she spots Jaenelle and lets out a small gasp, lifting her hand to wave to yet another dear friend of hers, though her attention is swiftly set back on the Master Brewer. "How could you possibly forget?" she asks Theron. "I'd bop the back of your head for that if we weren't at a dignified gathering of artists and afficianados."

Khanne waves her hand, fanning her face. "It is hot in the summer... even here, let alone in the Lyceum..." Lifting her chin, she asks venturo, "Trapped? In the house? Trapped where in the house?"

"I don't rightly know," Kalani confesses with a shake of her head to Rosalind, "but there's wine, and everything else. Also, Spider? Is it a messenger? Now that would be clever, and guaranteed to make at least one messenger-recipient possibly give a healthy shriek."

"Had you, Marquessa? You, of all people, know that I rescue anyone in distress, whatever the situation. If it just happens to be barmaids," Up those shoulders lift into a hapless shrug, but his features speak of pure amusement at the aside she tosses in. "Even the would be raiders were taken aback by how quickly the blaze took over, at a loss for how to get their would be bounty. Up the stairs I clambered with the wholesome lass I had been negotiating with," Slowly, the showman's gaze sweeps out along the crowd, as if surveying the situation Venturo had found himself in. "Smoke billowed around us. Coughing, with flames licking up from below, it was a split second decision to storm into the second room, and then? With her hand in mine, I flung myself at through the window, glass shattering, so she wouldn't have to suffer, hoping that no bones were broken in the fall... nor swords waiting to chop is from groin to head. As luck would have it,"

A long, pregnant pause is given there, all for dramatic effect before he answers that call of fortune. "We landed squarely in a small cart full of booty from the bandits. Well, I say booty. It was mostly watermelons. Splat went /everything/, and I tell you, I think I am /still/ picking seeds out of places I will not mention."

As Apollo approaches, Jaenelle can't help but laugh softly, reaching out so the spider may transfer from his shoulder to the top of her head where Ellani makes her home once more within the spidersilk veil the Archduchess wears. As Khanne waves, Jaenelle blows the other woman a kiss before they both shift attention once more and she looks back at Apollo with a sigh, leaning forward to speak more softly to him. As she glances over the man's shoulder, she grins again as she watches her brother move forward in their direction.

Elloise's delighted laughter rings out at the plight of the watermelons.

"Well, this has been lovely. No self-immolations or anything!" Niklas pushes himself to his feet and extends a hand to his wife, then offers nods all around. Jaenelle gets a flourishing bow, though when he sees the spider on her head he says, "Oh, dear, your grace you have a bit of... you know... ugh..." He looks to one of her guards like why aren't you smashing it? Then he and Sabella are on their way out.

Niklas has left the bar by the entrance.

Elizabetta, a disapproving lady-in-waiting, Lily, an aloof lady-in-waiting, 6 Grayson House Guards, Clark, an exasperated guard leave, following Sabella.

Sam, who is a boy and definitely not a princess in disguise, Sabella leave, following Niklas.

Lianne shares in Elloise's laughter at that detail, clearly not included in the tale as she'd heard tell the first time. Bright-eyed, she wonders, "Were you still skyclad?" with a degree of concern. Mostly amusement, but a little concern. Those negotiations with the 'barmaid' must have been going well.

Merek nods a bit to Kalani and Valerius while he seems to think about it.

The corners of Samira's lips twitch, a smile threatening as Venturo's storytelling brings images of splattered watermelons to mind. "What an escape." Speaking of escapes, it appears to be time for Samira to make hers. She waves to Caprice, offers a polite nod to any other familiar faces she notes, and makes an unobtrusive exit.

"If there is one thing I have learned, Marquessa, it is not to get caught with your pants down during heated business dealings." It sounds so sweet and serious, the way it rolls from Venturo's tongue, before he finishes the tale. "Off the horse took in a jolt, saving us from a handful of quite surprised vagabonds. Within the hour we were safe along the docks of the next coastal town over, only slightly worse for wear thanks to the glass from the window," It is here Venturo's left hand lifts up, tucking down that partially open collar of his shirt, flashing a fres scar on the top of his left breast, near the collarbone. "And I felt it wise to hop aboard the departing merchants ship, to make certain that they wouldn't raid this town looking for me. From fire to water, land to ocean did luck favor me in complement, a comparision I shall not forget. But little did I know that? Would lead to a different fateful encounter, one with the Dread Pirate Featherbeard. A story, however, for another time." And up that purple tricorn hat is lifted, tugged to a jaunty degree to perch upon his head.

Caprice raises her hand in response to Samira, as discreet as one can be about such gestures without getting lost within a crowd!

"But..." Khanne asks to Venturo with a curious, furrowed brow. "What about the mermaid?"

"Curious," Lianne concedes with a dip of her head, letting the matter lie. Though Khanne's question earns a nod, "Saved fro the fire, too, I heard," before she sets to motion, heading toward the bar to earn a drink. And potentially toast her favorite tale-teller. No matter how implausible it might be.

Starting high and ending higher, Elloise squeaks, "There's a mermaid?"

Caprice has left the gloomier view of the gallery.

Caprice has joined the bar by the entrance.

Lianne has left the gloomier view of the gallery.

Lianne has joined the bar by the entrance.

With the excitement from Khanne, Theron turns to look as well. He bows towards Princess Jaenelle with a smile. His recovery is a little off kilter as Khanne catches him off guard with a threat of bopping. "Oh do not worry, I am sure Braith will pay me back, and add some intrest for you Lady Khanne." For Venturo there is a little staring at the story. "Seeds are one thing, it'd be the stickiness that likely would distract me to insanity. Oof. Especially if watermelon got in the hair."

"Some parts," Venturo coos towards Khanne, the red haired shaman getting a crooked smile full of slyness. Mermaid? Barmaid? Whichever it might be, "are best left to be filled in with ones imagination." A beat of a pause as he looks around at the exhibit, considering. Warm laughter ripples from him as he begins to walk forward, catching Theron's thought, "But I am used to being in sticky situations," It's towards Khanne he treads, all to give a stage whisper that is loud enough to carry across the room. "However, I feel the mermaid? Would be quite at home in here."

Jaenelle pauses in her discussion with Apollo, turning to step on her toes and kiss her brother's cheek. "Valerius" she greets him, arm slipping into the crook of his to keep him there forever. As her kidnapping plans are set into motion, and she gives Apollo something to consider in a quiet tone, Theron is giving a smile and dip of her head in greeting to meet his own.

Monique has left the gloomier view of the gallery.

Giorgio has left the gloomier view of the gallery.

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

Duarte gets up to...oh wait, no he doesn't, for Lianne is heading toward where he is. He settles back down and offers to her some cordial words at the bar.

"You and your hair," Braith asides to Theron as he brings it up. Her smirk plays at her lips as she takes the drink that he brought for her. Sipping from the cup she smiles and leans into his side as she watches the brewer with interest. "Oh this is good," she remarks in regards to the drink. "We should slip away to the side. We also need to get back to Eliran." She remarks with a smile.

She continues to carefully enjoy the brew, watching everyone mingle with a look of one assessing their differences.

Lianne turns a bright smile toward Jaenelle on her way past, but doesn't interrupt whatever she's seeing to, either with Apollo or Valerius. In no small part because she's entirely intent on one of those beers Venturo's brewed up for the occasion. After she murmurs to Khanne, "I don't think we've ever spent so much time apart at an event we attended together," with low amusement. Once Zane's handed off her beer, she lifts it in toast to Venturo. "I'd ask that you try to stay out of trouble..." But it would be both pointless and insincere. Drinking to him, she allows herself a moment of brief relaxation, attention falling on Duarte.

Sipping from the drink she's holding, Kalani asks Merek a quiet question while observing the room from this vantage point. A glass of wine, art on display, it makes for a perfectly pleasant experience.

Valerius turns his cheek a little lower for Jaenelle to kiss instead of having to worry about being too tip-toed in her reach. Once she has captured his arm, he lays his head on her shoulder for a moment with some quiet words.

Elloise doesn't look disappointed, per se, at not hearing more about the mermaids, but it does seem to be the tipping point on determining how much longer to linger. And so she makes her way to the entrance and calls back over her shoulder, "I like all of your faces!" in the (not really) spirit of the occasion before heading out.

Khanne grins crookedly towards Venturo, sly, sly man. "Perhaps you are right." She winks to him, then looks to Theron. "I can hardly blame her if she does, in fact, I shall hope she does! She is thoroughly unforgettable, and therefor, you should never forget how lucky you are to have her. Aside from that.... how is your family? Well, I hope?" When Lianne nears again, she slips her arm through the brunette's reflexively, as if they are magnets drawn together whenever near. "It's true," she says with a nod. "Very strange indeed. Usually, we are cower... I mean, we are turning a dark corner into something beautiful with our presence." She smiles, winking towards her. The Duchess, Vala, redhead seems more at ease than she was at the start, perhaps with help from the drink she's been enjoying. "Oh, are you leaving?" she asks to Braith. "I am so glad you could come, and give such a beautiful performance."

Kalani is overheard praising Braith.

Kalani is overheard praising Khanne.

Kalani is overheard praising Lianne.

Kiera walks slowly over to the bar towards Khanne and Lianne "Pardon me, Duchess, Marquessa. There doesn't seem to be precisely a good time for interrupting hostesses at an event but i wanted to intoduce myself and thank yu for a lovely evening. Lady Kiera Wyvernheart"

Venturo comes up with the sticky situations line, Theron groans but has a grin for the man. "Nice. That did not go unnoticed. Seriously though, your gear had to be a disaster. It's not easy to clean in the best of circumstances." The Sword of Ostria appeals with martial thinking. He's pleased he caught Jaenelle's eye, and leaves the typically busy Princess to enjoy her evening for he must appear wounded suddenly. Braith's words upon his hair demands he place a hand over his heart as if she stabbed him there. He nods in understanding.

For Khanne, Theron still acts the wounded party. "Alas. She has cut me mortally deep through the soul this time. She has found her revenge at last." At the question of family. "The little ones are nice and healthy, the Duchess and Duke are well and likely have sent their regards here some place." Another genuine smile of happiness, and he steps back to not intrude on Khanne and Lianne pausing. "Soon, I think. Eliran is missed, and likely I am taxing Braith's strength... and patience." A wink towards his wife.

After a brief back and forth, Apollo bows to Jaenelle, nods, saying something warmer and clearly less 'business'. He slips back, but as he does, he gestures toward a large chiaroscuro painting. "I'm sure you've seen her tailoring skill, given how close her shop is to the estate. But I'm just so overwhelmed at her what Master Caprice has done here. Only just started with figures." He turns to admire it as well.

"A nightmares." Venturo chimes in with a beaming smile for Theron as he continues on, brushing by Khanne with a gentle bump of shoulder to shoulder. "Be good, Duchess. I'll tell you the rest of the story sometime soon, when you come by." And then the man continues on, heading for the door, slipping out without further notice.

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

"Daily do I mortally wound you," Braith remarks to Theron with a soft laugh to follow. "It is a wonder you recover at all." The tease is there as she sips at her drink and then gives Khanne a tilt of her head and half shrug. "We need to see the art I believe. And he is not wrong, I am missing the little creature." Eliran that is. She steps forward to offer another motion of deference to the two.

"Thank you both. For all of this." she says and slips over to take Theron's arm so that she might make a round and then take their leave.

Lianne leans in rather comfortably against Khanne's side when she finds the Vala's arm within hers. "I would argue that /usually/ we beguile and charm at the heart of the storm. Of course, before tonight, I might have also argued that we are better arm-in-arm, but we did work some magic from opposite corners of the room tonight, mm?" With a squeeze of that arm against hers, she turns her attention outward again. A nod and some soft words shared with Rosalind and Duarte, then a bright smile for Kiera. "A pleasure to meet you, Lady Kiera. I'm glad you were able to make it, and I hope you found something interesting to think on." The gesture toward Caprice's work is followed, and though she's not tracking that conversation at all, there is appreciation, maybe some small bit of pride to have that piece here. It /is/ remarkable. To Theron and Braith, she offers another nod, "I'm glad you could make it. Your performance was quite compelling, Lady Braith. Very thoughtful, and I'm grateful for your contribution to our odd evening. Truly."

Garibaldi, the Lycene swordbearer, 3 House Mazetti Guardians leave, following Theron.

Jaenelle dips her head towards Apollo, looking towards the painting as it is pointed out. "Caprice is a valued member of the Velenosa household and someone I have admired a great deal for many years. And thank you" she adds, though who knows what she might be thanking him for. As Valerius is given her attention with his head resting on her shoulder once business with Apollo is concluded, she smiles and asks, "where is my sister?" Her eyes shift through the crowd to stop on Lianne and she wiggles her fingers towards her sister in law and the other woman's greeting. With her arm still looped through her brother's she begins to lead them around the room to look around at things!

Much as she had with Khanne, Lianne blows a kiss across the distance toward Jaenelle, for that finger-wiggling. Somebody's clearly in high spirits tonight. Briefly, she finds herself distracted by a murmur from Elim, one of the young men behind the bar, but all he gets in return is a nod. It seems sufficient as he gladly returns to his ledger.

Smiling, Khanne turns to Kiera. "There is no interrupting hostesses, is there? We are, after all, here to mingle with everyone. It is a pleasure to meet you, Lady Kiera. I am, as you have said, Duchess Khanne Halfshav, Vala of the Northlands." She wears a few hats, those are but two. "I hope you are enjoying yourself?" With a nod towards Theron then, she says, "Venturo is good that way. Sly tongue of his. Quick witted." She nods, swiftly. "When you do return, give my best to the Ducke and Duchess? Then, do something to spoil Braith. Nice cup of tea... what have you, to thank her for putting up with you." She nods to Briath then. "Of course, there are many lovely things to see here. Again, thank you for your performance tonight. We shall catch up more soon, yes?" With a breath, she nods. "That we did, my dear," she says then to Lianne. She looks around then until her eyes land on Caprice. "Pardon... did I hear you ask of me earlier? I am the Duchess Halfshav." She laughs as the other woman seems to also take matters of introduction into her own hands at the same time. "Well met. And it would be a delight, if we are able to do so. Did I hear that you have a piece here?" She looks around. "Which might it be?"

Fortunato has left the gloomier view of the gallery.

Ugarte have been dismissed.

Lianne murmurs aside to Khanne, "Oh, are we doing the title thing?" Teasing. Or, possibly, presenting a challenge, an old game to pick up. Caprice's question has her looking more curiously at her companion. Will they be considering more regular cultural events? Low and quiet, she notes to the both of them, "There'll be a proper opening event of some variety once I have a full collection worth showing in the main room. New ideas." It's an incomplete thought, but that's all that makes it out. Pulling her attention out of her own head, she says more directly to Caprice, "The company you keep and the work you do certainly speaks well of your taste," which sounds like a yes, contingent on if.

Sensing that Merek isn't one for much conversation tonight, Kalani finishes her drink, glances down into the empty bowl of the glass before deciding that another drink is in order. Or, and a thoughtful look is sent around the room before she carries the empty glass to the nearest bar and sets it down lightly. She moves to study the art on display once more before slipping out of the gallery, out into the spring air.

It's a faint, cheerfully unrepentant smile that favors both Rosalind and Khanne as Caprice stakes her claim on a bit of real estate amongst the titled notables she's keeping company with. "It's my pleasure to make your acquaintance," she notes, before half-turning, "I do enjoy that honor, yes- ah.. that one, the shadow study," she indicates the hanging chiaroscuro drawing in an open-handed gesture. "I admit I haven't put much time into viewing the other works on display, but I'm struck by what a difference can be made by affording a title to a piece. I wonder, if people were to view mine for example, if their perception would change if it were called 'The Bather', or what it would be if it had been titled 'Despair.'"

Duarte turns his gaze to Caprice and the sudden introduction. He is taken aback for a moment only. "Why...No! I received none. And, as you can see, I am desparate. These tatters are all tired and worn. Plain silk? This day and age?" He scoffs at himself and drinks his whiskey.

Apollo beams - just short of laughing, really - and turns to the bar to get himself a drink. There's a glance back over his shoulder at the conversation, though, as he waits for the pour. "Titles do seem to make a difference," he agrees. "If you use them. But might be you don't actually see the art, then." He turns, collects his whiskey, and moves back over to join Caprice.

Valerius follows along with Jaenelle, if it is a kidnapping it is the most polite and willing version as he offers a little laugh and some quiet commentary about which pieces have caught his attention thus far.

Lianne gives her own plain silk a little swish. Such lovely dye work, the cut, the fabric itself unremarkable. Not a lick of shame for it. Khanne's read on the piece, her commentary on perspective, earns a warm smile from the marquessa, a look that reads /this is why I like you/. To Caprice, she wonders, "Have you had a chance to view the permanent collection yet?" Her beer lifts a little toward Apollo as he approaches. An excuse to drink. Maybe even a reason. To Rosalid, she notes, "It /is/ lovely, isn't it. My other half here--" She means Khanne, to whom she remains attached at the arm. "--is rather talented."

"I only gave some of them!" Khanne defends against Lianne. "Usually only when first meeting someone, then you know.... I am just Khanne... or if that is how they referred to me." She shrugs, she's never been one to be fussy about titles, though, she has also enjoyed the title game with a person or two herself. "Hey," she says towards Duarte. "There is nothing wrong with plain silk. I am still very fond of it." She looks then towards the paintings. "Ah, yes. Titles," those of the art kind, "are weird. I often struggle to think of a name for things I create, whether by words or paint. I tend to look at the art before the name of it though, when viewing others."

Vitalis returns from a conference with Feisel, his aide, who hustled off to see about Important Business. He scans the room, getting his bearings again. Where has everyone moved off to...?

Rosalind grins at Lianne, nodding her head. "Oh I know! It's why I gave her a really pink cake!" Yes. PINK. For Khanne. The tall Ravenseye smiles over at Caprice too, telling her,"I sometimes forget I know more people than I realize."

Wit, the clever raccoon arrives, delivering a message to Merek before departing.

Apollo has joined the bar by the entrance.

"As you can see, my lack of competence in this field has insulted some," Duarte says. "All the /more/ reason I require a stylist."

Khanne nods towards both Rosalind and Lianne. "It was very pink... and very delicious."

Bar!-ish. Apollo just turned around to view comment on Caprice's art, went to join her. He's a bad date; he got himself a drink and not her. Or... no. He's a bad date that /learns/; that murmur to her might be, 'do you like whiskey?'

Somewhere around where Lianne is positioned, Jaenelle drops off Valerius. Apparently he may need to be watched at all times. "Soon" she promises him with a grin before unkidnapping him. As it appears she is heading out, her small army appears from no where to escort her home.

12 House Velenosa Guards, Ibasia, the Velenosa Lady-in-Waiting, Ellani, the palm sized spider, Sir Thad Quackington leave, following Jaenelle.

Lianne saves Caprice from making the point about silk, likely with more oomph though there's a distinct gleam in the common woman's gaze; evidently fabric is a Topic of Interest for her. But for Duarte's sake, she only agrees, "We can't have you in tatters, my Lord. I might be able to help, if you're amenable to my sending word later?" Apollo's return is welcomed with another smile, and a thoughtful nod for his remark. "I would say most artists hope their message is clear to the audience if indeed they've included one, but that holds true for any form of expression, communication. I- mmm?" Thrown off what might have been a long ramble, she nods assent to Apollo, promises Rosalind, "I'll continue to remind you," then admits to Lianne, "Not yet. But I shall, if I can find someone to hold my spot with the Guildmaster..." How convenient - she spots Vitalis!

"Allow me to be of service," Vitalis steps in at Caprice's loft of request to hold her place with Apollo. He'll help her up and then help himself to the space just vacated.

Kiera has moved off to the side to let the hostess' continue their business and notes the dropping off of the marquis

Valerius smiles and nods to Jaenelle as she dashes off, then turns to the bar. "Khanne, the painting is really very captivating." Turning to Lianne, "I almost forgot how much fun it is to watch you work."

Lianne presses a soft kiss to Khanne's shoulder, an apology for that little bit of prodding. Of course, it's punctuated with a quick quip of, "Tease," for the assurance that the Very Pink Cake was also Very Delicious. No cake tonight. Only beer. Which she lifts toward Valerius as he's deposited nearby. "Good to see her out, mm?" The commentary on titling earns a delighted smile. "I find they add a bit of context, insight. Not always necessary, but often complementary, something to shade the piece." With a warm smile toward Vitalis, she murmurs, "Welcome back. I'm glad your business didn't keep you indefinitely." Her eyes narrow faintly at Valerius' remark, but it's Caprice where she lands. "Would you prefer an escort?"

Rosalind grins over at Lianne, promising her naturally,"I'll make you a super pink cake too if you want. And whiskey. Not pink whiskey of course. Because--,"Rosa starts and wrinkles her freckled nose. "Ew." There's a wink at Khanne when she DOES mention how good it was and a laugh to Caprice. "Fine! But I'll remind you about your hike."

"I'll never decline a good bottle of whiskey," Lianne assures Rosalind, "and fine conversation to go with it. I don't know that I've ever had a cake that was pink. Does it have strawberries?" She almost looks hopeful.

Apollo gamely hands off the whiskey he got for himself to Caprice. Hers all along. He's got Vitalis, which is plenty for him. "Shall we look around? Now that - I'm not wanted in several wards?" The wry look he gives the Clement lord is... something. "What a success, Marquessa Lianne - Duchess Khanne, was it? I know I've heard your name before - I think around Keaton Hall." Well. If they start a conversation here, wandering to look at things is... unlikely. BUT STILL.

"I'm -almost- ready for that," Caprice informs Rosalind, all seriousness behind her tiny smile. "I've never made leathers for myself, it's a curious beast." She'll linger at least long enough to collect her drink, but she's comfortably moving aside to make more room for Vitalis, and listening in with interest about cakes. Or maybe just the whiskey part. Belatedly towards Lianne she confirms, "I'm not so enamored of my own company that I won't share it with willing volunteers. But I'd feel some guilt tearing anyone away from the conversation here."

Rosalind gasps at Lianne. "I can put strawberries on it! It will be a Lianne Cake with the best company and whiskey from the north!" Turning to look at Apollo, Rosa gives her friend a wave and a smile,"Hi Apollo!" Caprice gets a chuckle and a promisingly nod,"Okay. I promised not to do the camping part. Just the hiking!"

For a moment or three, or so, Khanne is in a bit of a whirlwind of trying to keep up with conversation and studying the art being discussed. When valerius compliments her own art, she smiles with a bit of a blush. "Thank you. It has been far too long since I picked up a brush... I had inspiration." She looks around, as if to see where her inspiration went off to. "But, it really felt good to paint again, and I am quite pleased with it." When called a tease by Lianne, she puts her hand to her chest, brows raised in the universal silent language of innocence; 'me?'. "Mmm... sometimes, titles to pieces can be downright confusing too. Leaves me wondering why the heck they called it that and why am I not seeing the correlation." Attention shifting towards Apollo, she nods. "Yep! That's me. Khanne. Very possibly Keaton Hall... I am practically part of their family."

Merek makes a way from the place with a wave, and nod along to folk!

Apollo gives Rosalind a shallow dip of his head in greeting, vastly eclipsed by the warm smile offered her way. "Lady Rosalind. How is that bow treating you?" To the collected company, he offers: "I was rather overwhelmed with shop-work and - trying to finish designs for some gifts I had made over at Felix's shop. I think my head might have got slightly unhinged from my shoulders -" he glances at Rosalind, "- was it falling off? Or did I imagine that?" Whatever the answer: "She was a tremendous help sorting out the mess I'd made for myself." He smiles at Khanne. "Might say the same for me. We must be ships in the night."

Kiera slips out with a smile

Apollo is overheard praising Rosalind.

Aaaaaand, then Feisel returns, leaning down to whisper in Vitalis' ear, delivering him a thick folio. The word 'urgent' is notable in the murmurations. He scrubs at his face, rubbing up under his eye patch and then sighing. A brief exchange and then he grimaces apology to those gathered, "A moment," he puts a hand on Apollo's knee, before diving into the materials, lips moving faintly as he reads.

Valerius grabs a tankyard of Dualities, hiding his face behind the drink for a moment. Watching Lianne's expression change as he was attempting to make a compliment and failed.

"Oh no! I think your head was still there, just but a thread though,"Rosa teases Apollo with a laugh. A fond one. "But I didn't mind helping. Felix is going to teach me how to make stuff too! It keeps me busy and like Aella says, it keeps me in less trouble." Rosalind also answers with a grin,"It's been really good to me. It killed me a turkey." Turkey's totally count!

"I would like that, Lady Rosalind," Lianne says of the cake with strawberries and whiskey. "We'll make up some occasion for it." When Khanne speaks to her inspiration and seeks to find it about the room, her gaze follows curiously, settling on something rather than someone. Thoughtful. Returning her attention to Khanne, she appends to that confirmation of identity, "Nearly part of mine, as well. One of the last hold-outs, mm?" She flashes a small smile toward Apollo then slips away from Khanne's side. "I am officially abandoning my hostessing duties." Which doesn't remove the responsibility of gallery ownership, but everything seems under control. To Caprice, "It's a selish offer, really. I'm rather proud of what we've built here," though there is some hesitation when Vitalis' attention is pulled away, a pause to check if departure is still on the agenda.

Back to list