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Saik Family Dinner III: Cathedral Fundraiser

The Saik family invites the people of Arx to join them for a night of dinner, wine, music, and dancing! While there is always "good cause" to gather with family and friends, this evening's festivities will be for the good cause of helping restore the Great Cathedral of the Pantheon.The latest batch of Orazio's preferred family red wine has been bottled, and Medeia has coordinated with the vintners of Saikland Greens to have one case (12 bottles) specially prepared with his signature wine spice blend. These extremely limited bottles of Orazio's Spiced Red Wine will be raffled off during the dinner. Tickets may be bought in advance or at the dinner (see Medeia) for 10,000 silver each, no limit. You do not need to be present to win (but it's encouraged) and you do not need to participate in the raffle to attend the dinner (but it's encouraged).

Date

Dec. 1, 2020, 9 p.m.

Hosted By

Medeia Lucita Nijah

Participants

Neilda Orland Ember Natasha Calla Gaspar Ryhalt Drake Alessia Cristoph Yuri Romulius Piccola Kalani Tyche Vicarin Norah Rowenova Cassimir Samira Macario

Organizations

Location

Arx - Ward of the Lyceum - Saik Tower - Music Chamber

Largesse Level

Grand

Comments and Log


3 House Mazetti Guardians, Sirra, a very quiet maid, an indeterminate number of cats, Lance, a rebellious swan that likes to headbutt arrive, following Alessia.

The gates and doors separating the music chamber from Southport Square have all been thrown open, with guards stationed at the gate and throughout the garden and main hall. Servants greet guests, offering to take cloaks and weapons for safekeeping. The music chamber itself has been transformed into a gleaming and glittering spectacle for the evening. The tables are arranged around the dance floor and draped with bright white tablecloths. Golden candlesticks and candelabras are spaced around them with white candles offering warm, flickering light. Bouquets of assorted white flowers - peonies, lilies, carnations, baby's breath - are set in silver and crystal vases, and arranged in a swag that drapes over the hearth's mantel. Musicians have taken up strategic spots to be out of the way but be heard clearly.

Along the far wall, a long table is laid with a buffet style spread of lighter fare for those who wish to nibble and mingle - such as cured meats, cheeses, fruits, olives, nuts, rolls - as well as heavier fare for anyone wishing to enjoy a proper meal - beef medallions with mushroom gravy, roasted potatoes, garlicky asparagus - and a selection of sweets - honeyed figs and candied orange peels from Lottie's, the Saikland signature grape and olive oil cake, and miniature chocolate pine nut tarts. A temporary bar has been set by the door, staffed by a servant prepared to pour or mix any libation requested. A variety of Saikland wines, the new Costa Lavica whiskey, and a bottle of Navegant rum are on display.

Medeia stands somewhat centrally, greeting people as they arrive. Her protege, Nijah, is on hand to greet and ensure everyone is having a good time.

Orland was invited. He showed the guards the invite, if they gave him any trouble for being a little better than a merchant dressed in silk. He at least didn't walk in with his hands shoved into his pockets, though his expression wasn't anything more than what it was, normally, which means a scowl rests there. Once escorted to the place of the event, he arrives with a bottle of Kraken in hand. Gifts were allowed, right? He shoves the invitation in his pocket once he's in the music chamber. He hesitates at the threshold. So many people. His eyes search for someone to be an anchor, bless his heart, where the abyss is Patrizio! The man isn't in sight, so he hovered and side stepped, debating his immediate turn around by the glances he sends back the way he came.


Ember arrived early to the soiree, which minimized the impact of arriving in her scandalous 'Lyceum-inspired' gown, but also afforded her the opportunity to be pulled off to one side as the guests really start flowing in. She leans down somewhat so that Piccola doesn't have to get up on her tip-toes to murmur, and converses with the General quietly.

Leonardo, a kindly old librarian, Yuri arrive, following Cassimir.

Rupert, the Laurent Archivist, 2 Valardin Knights arrive, following Cristoph.

Cassimir, Cristoph arrive, following Tyche.

Gaspar has joined the a group of armchairs near a fireplace.

Tonight finds Natasha Thrax in a more colorful detraction from her usual austere dress; clad in layered blue seasilk, she cuts a sharply elegant figure that somehow manages, still, to avoid the blatant ostentation she generally finds abhorrent. Her love for a high collar remains, but the social nature of the evening must be enough leeway for her sensibilities to allow for bared shoulders. It makes the most out of the frame they make with the defiant line of a pale jaw, left visible by the way dark hair is swept upwards, and keeps the details of the delicate rose-and-white-gold torque encircling throat and clavicle in full display.

She also isn't alone; as tall as she is, she's managed to find an escort that's even taller than herself in Romulius Blackshore, a childhood friend, safely ensconced within his darker, dourer shadow and a set of long ivory fingers draped on the crook of his elbow.

"Lady Medeia," she greets. "Thank you very much for the invitation. Have you met Lord Romulius?" She gestures with her free hand to her companion.

Nijah is stood by the entrance, making sure to greet everybody as they arrive. Her soft, and thickly accented voice easily notable to all that see her, carrying herself with the grace of the Whisper house, she dips her head one after the other to all that arrive, and she even cranes her view over to the rest of the room to ensure that everybody is receiving the attention that they need. "Many thanks to you all for coming, if you can please be seated and be helping yourself to drinks," Nijah beams happily to them.

After fetching a glass of wine, Calla lingers away as her eyes fall on the arriving guests, looking for someone she might possibly recognize. And then Orland walks in and her eyes grow round as she makes her way over to him, her steps quickening just a little bit until she can reach him, offering a very sympathetic smile, before leaning in to whisper something to him.

The marquis arrived with a coy smile on his face, wearing an easy smile for all the guests and hosts alike. His hair was freshly awry, dark brown waves mussed with a couple days worth of stubble working along his jaw. Dark silks wrapped about his lean frame and Gaspar settled off to the side near the fireplace. Of course, he stopped off at the cart and procured a glass of red wine first and spotted Piccola nearby, winking with a bit larger of a grin.

Ryhalt smiles to Medeia and Nijah as they greet him on the way in. Moving along into the hall, he takes the opportunity to look about and admire the ambiance of the room.

Drake Wyvernheart had an invitation to this event, so... he came. Lately he doesn't even have to crash parties as much as he used to. But he's almost always at parties for the same reasons... food, drink, women. The elabroate spread catches his eye, but only so long as it diverts him from looking around at the crowd. He sees Piccola here, and gives her a nod in greeting, only for his eyes to naturally wander to Ember... and what she's wearing, at which he takes a slightly longer look. Then, he, very casually, grabs himself some whiskey. He gives a small wave to Medeia also, but the hostess... well, the hostess is always busy at these things.

Though her first time at one of these dinners, Alessia smiles brightly to the hostesses when she arrives in the - not unfamiliar - Music Room. Her maid seems to slip a Platinum Duke in the hands of whoever is collecting the donations for the fundraiser. "My ladies." The glaivedancer dips her head in greeting to the Saik twins, before looking for a place to sit.

Having already greeted a few early arrivals, Medeia looks up to see Orland. "Ah, Orland, come in, mingle." She smiles warmly at the man and looks around, "Have you met Baroness EMber Redreef? Baroness, this is Lord Orland Amadeo." She nudges them toward each other for no reason other than proximity as Natasha comes in with Romulius. Dipping a curtsy, she says, "Hello, your higness, I have, hello to you as well Lord Romulius! Thank you both for coming." A smile and wave for Gaspar, Ryhalt, and Drake each as she continues to mingle.

Arriving together would be Marquessa Tyche and Lord Tyche Inverno along with Duke Cristoph Laurent. The Oathlands duke has offered his arm to Tyche and is murmuring something quietly to her as they pass over the threshold into the room the event is being held in. "I don't remember being formally introduced in the past," he finally remarks upon straightening, this bit of conversation directed to Cassimir. "But yes! It's a pleasure to finally meet you under more extended circumstances. And really this seems fair as your cousin now spends her time lurking in the rooms of my house with /my/ cousin. Perhaps we should get drinks sometime?" A conspiracy.

2 Eswynd shieldbearers arrives, following Norah.

Yuri reciprocated the gesture Cassimir had made, clasping his shoulder as well in a show of friendship. Icy blues canted down to inspect his own finery, although maybe a bit too rugged for such a elegant occasion. Still, it was tailored to allow him a fine blend-in to the peerage crowd if he so chose, "Indeed. So noticeable, isn't it? I could not be more pleased with it. How have you fared? You're looking in rather fine form. My question still stands!" He had trailed in at the tail end of the party being guided by Duke Laurent.

Q-bert an Albino Possum arrives, delivering a message to Monique before departing.

Norah has joined the a group of armchairs near a fireplace.

For his part, Romulius apparently continues to spurn attire outside of his usually drab pallette, though he has managed to shed the plate armor he so often wears. Those with a keen enough eye would see that it's more likely than not that the woman on his arm, his childhood friend Natasha Thrax, leads them towards the dinner's hostess than the reverse. There's a polite nod of greeting given her way along with a warm smile as he speaks, "Lady Saik, a pleasure as always. You'll forgive that I've not sent word of congratulations on your betrothal. The Isles are fortunate to be welcoming you." His gaze scans about the rest of the chamber, a dip of his chin offered to any of those he is familiar with who might catch his eye.


"Yes," says Piccola to Ember, drawing away from her just a little, and then offering her an elbow to take.

That's when Medeia comes by with Lord Amadeo. The General looks at the man and nods to him respectfully. And she may have made an introduction, if she did not also notice Gaspar come in. To him, she gives a raised eyebrow, and just a slight smirk of recognition, as befits family. "Lord Amadeo," she then says, a second after, to Orland. A gesture is made to Ember.

"This is the Baroness Ember of House Redreef; I am General Piccola of House Tessere."



Orland is receptive to the Baroness Calla, looking to physically turn toward her and speak with her in lower tones, some of reassurance. He nods toward the Hostess and her Protege, offering his arm to Calla to take as he heads that way to Medeia and Nijah. "Lady Medeia," he bobs his head, "Would you need something else to auction off? Or well, perhaps keep it as a gift. I found it in some tenants old things..." He offers her the bottle, if not to Medeia herself, to Nijah. His eyes turn toward Ember, "Well actually no... I..." he stumbles a bit, clearing his throat, "Hello Baroness Ember."

"He's also my newest friend." Calla says as she slips a hand into the crook of Orland's arm when he offers it. "Lady Medeia and Baroness Ember are also those who I count friends. They both came to Sangris with me recently."

Arriving solo, as this particular Seliki is prone to doing, Lady Kalani Seliki is moving along at the end of the reception line, holding a small fan in one hand with which she gently stirs the air. Dressed in a lovely honeysilk gown, the Seliki physician glances around at the room at large, seeing some familiar faces and others she can't quite put name to.

Tyche looks between Cassimir and Cristoph as the Duke makes the suggestion that they enjoy drinks. Her gaze dances with amusement, and instead of being afraid for the outcome, she simply encourages, "Wine is always a fine choice when two men get together to gossip. Would you like me to send some over for the occasion, when it occurs?" Her attention shifts then to the room at large, the beauty of the setting one quite familiar to her now that she's attended two... three... four of these? However many, she's here again, this time without any truth bombs to drop. To Yuri she looks as his armor is brought into attention. "Quite dashing, Lord Yuri. Now when I sit in your fan section of the training center, I will have something even more handsome to watch." She smiles, and then she's looking for someone in the crowds, and when she spies Medeia, her smile grows.

Vicarin walks in, dressed in fine silks, a finer sea silk cloak billowing behind him as he walks. A sword hanging at his side, neither ceremonial or ornamental, suggests a martial inclination. He's unaccompanied and he swiftly makes his way to where Lucita is, nodding to her once in greeting before standing somewhere nearby. Medeia is left alone for now so she can receive guests without interruptions but should he be noticed, he dips his head to her in polite greeting, a formal gesture as the situation demands.

The Marquessa of Eswynd Rock arrives, flanked by her guards. Norah's arm is still in a sling and she has a fresh scar at her hairline, but she carries herself with serene confidence. She glides over to Medeia, offering a smile of greeting. "My lady, you've outdone yourself once more," she says in her highly formal Isles accent.

Showing up to the festivities with Sir Flop beside her is Scout Rowenova who seems shrouded in her wolfy pelt as she immediately veers to the food table, packing up a partitioned box, before plating up a bunch of carnes/proteins for her own consumption.

Nijah dips her head towards Orland and she smiles towards him. "Oh! Well met! If you are hoping to be having it auctioned off, Lady Medeia is taking care of such things. I am simply here to be making sure that our guests are having a good time," she offers a smile towards him, her gaze shifting around the room as she speaks to make sure she's not missing a person in need!


Ember slips her arm into Piccola's in the stately fashion of a woman who -- for all of her fearsome reputation -- has been trained in noble pomp and ceremony since birth. As she's introduced to Orland, Ember dips herself somewhat in a half-bow. The dress she wears is too conforming for a proper curtsy. "It is a pleasure, my Lord. And an honor, to be spoken of so highly by Baroness Calla." When she straightens up, Ember's eyes scan the room. They land on Romulius, and she starts the motion of an upnod -- and then she sees Natasha with him and that gaze becomes absolutely searing in its sudden coldness. No upnod is completed, and Ember looks away.

Norah has left the a group of armchairs near a fireplace.

2 Eswynd shieldbearers leaves, following Norah.

"Lady Alessia," Medeia says warmly as she sees the lady. She looks over to see Tyche, Cassimir, and Cristoph. "Ah, Marquessa, come to ruin my evening?" She asks with a laugh and a wink, holding a hand out to her. "Cass, I'm so happy to see you, and Duke Laurent, welcome." She sends a wave in Yuri's direction. When Romulius addresses her, she blushes faintly. "Thank you my lord." More mingling!

2 Eswynd shieldbearers arrives, following Norah.

Cassimir strolls into the room a half-step behind Tyche and the Honey Duke, and keeps pace with a relatively new Tessere friend. Verdigris irises are listing downward to the polished mosaic tile floors by default, lifting only to smile politely to the hostesses, Nijah and Medeia, and thereafter nod toward anyone he chances to pass that is even remotely familiar to him. It is only when they've fully made their entrance that the Inverno lord casts a sidelong glance toward Lord Yuri, expression assuming a friendly disposition. "Yes, quite fashionable. And have you procured your new weapon, yet, or still wielding that excellent rapier you showed me?" he inquires, and then quickly follows with a proper response to lingering inquiries as to his health and well-being. "I'm quite well, quite. I have some...developments to share since last we spoke, but as my cousin has not yet made the announcement, I'm holding off on sharing it at-large." To Duke Cristoph's invitation, Cassimir's smile takes on a more mischievous twist. "Gladly, my lord. I had an opportunity at the opening of Lady Mabelle's Dire Bee Lounge to take a bottle of Bochet, which we finished off rather quickly. Perhaps it is time to procure another."

Disinclined to keep the hostess from performing her duties, the Thraxian princess keeps her greetings amicable but perfunctory, though eyes like lit embers follow the wake of the harlequin as she entertains the rest of her guests. The look of her is briefly assessing, but it isn't long until Natasha turns her attention to the rest of the room, visually plucking out familiar faces while lingering on the unfamiliar bodies. She almost doesn't recognize Ember, but the dress she wears forces her to double-take slightly out of curiosity, if nothing else. If the chilly reception is at all noticed, there is no sign of it, her words to her companion lost in the chamber's growing din.

Orland offers the bottle off, to Medeia or those who are helping her, "Whatever you wish to do with it. Keep it, drink it, throw it off the balcony..." He smirks a little, backing away to a more comfortable solitude with Baroness Calla on his arm, nodding to her indication that they're new friends, "The very best kind." Keeping up to all the swirling colors of fabric, the faces, the hair, and the conversations had been easier before when he wasn't in the thick of it. Now his eyes flashed away from the Hostess, toward Ember. The half-bow is met with a bob of his head or something similar, "Thank you, it's nice to be held in high regard by such a pleasant person. She's my anchor but I think we've come to dance and enjoy the music? One fun thing, must be done tonight." His lips curled a little, obviously having Calla for his anchor there tonight so he didn't drift away into the walls where he could hide.


The General looks to Calla for a moment, and then flips her attention to the Baroness on her arm.

There's a moment of silence. "I am fortunate enough to have a drink of my own," she says to no one in particular. "But I am also tasked to get one for the Baroness." She holds up her drink, and then says to Ember, "Let's go and see whether we can snatch another one of these, shall we?" Beat. "Lord Amadeo. Baroness Vaevici."

And then she starts to draw her companion away towards Gaspar, Yuri, and other newcomers are.



Being recently acquainted with Calla, Drake walks over in that direction casually, and gives her a greeting nod as well. "Ah, I assumed we might see one another again." He also spots Nijah, and smiles in her direction. "Ah, you're helping with the event, then? I'm sorry we haven't had any time to catch up." Pause. "Drake, if you don't remember."

"No, no. It's meant to happen when you're least expecting it and you'll only be notified after it's over," Cristoph teases Tyche as they move through the room. The real Tyche. Not the Cassimir-Tyche. Lest there be any confusion. As Medeia addresses them, he nods his head once in her direction and offering a polite smile. At mention of evenings being ruined, the polite smiling endures. The curve of his mouth widens a bit more when he turns to Cassimir, "I have plenty of spirits at the manse that I could bring by. People are always sending us things more strong than wine that I almost never finish. Believe it or not, the Laurents aren't big drinkers most of the time."

Orland leans to whisper something to Calla, as the General pulls away the Baroness.

With more people coming in, Medeia makes the valiant effort of catching each and every one with at least a nod. She sees Kalani and waves her over. "'Lani! Ah, do you know..." She scans the room quickly, "Princess Natasha Thrax? Have you met? Your highness, this is Lady Kalani Seliki." She spots Vicarin not long after and is sent a smile before she greets Rowenova. The bottle from Orland is passed off to Fortescue at some point and then she's finding herself a glass of wine.

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

Nijah eyes Drake curiously for a few moments, brows furrowing as she tries to think back before wondering. "Were we meeting back in the grotto? You are looking familiar but it must have been a long time ago," Nijah smiles towards him and dips her head. "Is there anything that I can be getting you? Do you need a drink?"


Ember gives a deep nod to Orland and Calla, when Piccola announces these drinking related plans. For a moment, the Amadeo Lord and the Vaevici Majestrix may well notice the smallest hint of a smile of Ember's lips, a twitch at the very corners that she seems careful to hide from the General. "Until we meet next," Ember says. "Hopefully without any... lake gods." Whatever THAT means. And then Ember allows herself to be dragged away by Piccola.

By now, there were a great many faces that the Velenosan-born recognized and the smile he wore hitched just a little higher as he leaned against one of the highbacked chairs at the fireplace. Dark eyes looked at the array of colors and dressings, appealing to the last as each wore their own style and seemed to fit and mirror quite well. Of course, the most recent arrivals were well-known more than most and he gave a tip of his wineglass to those in the company of Cristoph.

Yuri paused a moment as his brow creased upward at the volume of folks before them, "Mm, full tables this evening." He smiled as the quad had passed the gaze of Lady Medeia, offering a wave and gentle bow of his head in return to her greeting before his sickeningly blue eyes settled on Cassimir yet again, "Mm? Oh, no no. I still have such the weapon from the smiths of Iriscal. And perhaps I can wait a bit longer but I do have plans to draft myself a proper weapon in design and form. Function above all." His eyes settled to Tyche with a fond smile, "The cheers shall certainly help to strengthen my resolve in the bout, Marquessa. Your support is eagerly claim and graciously accepted." Back to Cassimir, lowly, "I shall dare to call it, Veleno. Venom."

The hostess's thanks are returned with a nod of deference as Romulius leads his companion away and towards the refreshments table. Ember's dress manages to catch his attention before the Bloody Baroness's gaze finds him, though he returns only a look of disinterest at her icy response. He gives a murmur to his side, lost in the din of the event as they step away. Their departure, though, is interrupted by Kalani's introduction, who is given a polite dip of Romulius's head in greeting though he allows Natasha to speak first.

Folding the little fan that she's holding, Lani laughs quietly as she hugs Medeia, just a quick one as she knows how busy Medeia is with such a crowded room. "All of this looks lovely, and such a fine turn out for such a worthy cause." She follows Medeia's line of sight and curtsies to the introduced Princess Natasha Thrax, "I don't believe so, but it's a pleasure to meet you, your highness."

"Oh, well, by all means, have your surprise meeting and send me a note about it while you're doing it, and I will totally have the same restraint you did and not unlock every single door at the estate trying to find you two," Tyche speaks this all with an innocent smile, her gaze shared between the two men in question. "Really, though. You should speak. Two men I trust spending time together - what harm could there be in that?" She allows that topic to shift to that of weaponry, and her interest to be drawn by the others in the room as they certainly move away from the door. "Shall we find a place to spend the evening in deep conversation where we share our secrets over the wine they have here?" she wonders of the trio with her, briefly her eyes meeting those of a former-Velenosa prince by the fireplace.

Vicarin casually walks over to the tea-cart where Rowenova seems to be and mutters some thing to her in a low tone. Some kind of greeting probably.


Onwards.

Piccola draws Ember with her as she goes to where the illustrious, inimitable Marquis d'Iriscal sits by the fireplace. "Cousin," she begins, looking to Gaspar with a glint of a challenge in her eyes. "This is the Baroness Ember of House Redreef. Have you met her?" It's almost like a taunt, really. It is, perhaps, how House Tessere's members greet each other.

Must make for interesting family dinners.



Calla beams just a little bit when she's called Orland's anchor, "You're helping me out too so I don't have to wander around all alone and pathetic looking." When the people they were talking to disperse, she turns to Orland with a smile, "Are you goind to dance with me then? I didn't know if you did that." She observes with a smirk before spotting Drake and offering a little waggle of her fingers in his direction, "Well since we seem to have several aquaintances in common, it was only a matter of time really."

Harlen leaves, following Duarte.

Ryhalt passes over some coin to enter the raffle before helping himself to some food and sitting down at the table nearest the dance floor.

Ryhalt has joined the a long table beside a dance floor.

ALSO, to Medeia Tyche laughs, "No. I save that for once a year!"

After closing her box, Nova sets her plate on the top of it and then picks the combination up before nodding and following after Vicarin.

The sudden introduction to a new face catches her by surprise; it registers in the faintest kiss of long lashes on ivory cheeks, but while her smile barely registers on her features, Natasha's air is amiable all the same. "Well met, my lady Seliki. May I present my companion, Lord Romulius Blackshore." A steady assessing gaze falls on Kalani's comely countenance, curiosity glinting like a faraway star in midnight irises. "Have you known the Lady Medeia long?"

Primus, First of Monique's Assistants arrives, delivering a message to Medeia before departing.

"I can take another, if you're offering," Drake says to Nijah. "Though I should probably eat before I have TOO much whiskey, just to round it out." He smiles, in an easygoing way. "And, yes, I think it was too long. How are you finding things lately? Almost summer now." He looks back at Calla with that same smile. "Seems so. And. Before you ask. I'm one for the occasional dance myself."

Gaspar turned at Piccola's approached and smiled, "Lady-General. You look beautiful today." There was a bit of a tighter smile before he looked over to Ember and gave the baroness a nod. "I believe we have run across one another, but it was a very long time ago. I doubt if she recalls the circumstances. She seemed rather preoccupied, if memory serves." There was a playful glint in the marquis' gaze while he took a sip of wine. "How has my cousin been treating you this evening, baroness?"

Norah makes her way over to Nijah's side. "Whisper Nijah! How good to see you again," she smiles, raising her glass daintily. "How are you? Will you introduce me to your charming friend?" she asks, gesturing to Drake with her chin.

Orland looks over the room and spots the Marquessa Tyche, hesitating before his eyes settle back to Calla. "We already know what happens in these situations, so let us pretend they all don't exist and have our own little fun?" He says with a cynical tone, stepping forward in front of her and doing a graceful little bow as he offers to dance with her, something the higher nobles at a ball might do. His hand turned palm up. "If you don't mind a few awkward turns and steps," he notes, "This was on your list of fun things to do, after all."

1 Culler Boatswain, 2 Culler Midshipman arrive, following Samira.

"I am finding things quite well," Nijah smiles to Drake and dips her head. "I am an apprentice Whisper now, and I am working on truly establishing myself within the city. Lady Medeia is my patron and we are planning to be doing some great work together," Nijah smiles before she blinks in surprise at Norah before beaming in delight. "Marquessa Norah, it is good to be seeing you again. This is Lord Drake, we met once long ago but I am afraid I cannot be recalling what family he was from," she smiles apologetically. "Many apologies, it can be so difficult to be keeping track of all of these things."


"Was it not in the public baths?" Ember says to Gaspar, lifting one dark eyebrow but maintaining her poker face otherwise. Her tone isn't /explicitly/ taunting, but... well, it's also not clear whether she's implicitly taunting Gaspar or Piccola, really. "In any event -- it is a pleasure to meet once more. And the General has taken excellent care of me thus far. I could not ask for a better escort."

Medeia sidles up alongside the uninjured side of Norah, saying, "Thank you for coming Marquessa. Do you know Duke Ryhalt Farshaw? He's a good sea-faring man. Eventually, we'll have dinner together." She's not ignoring other introductions being made, but she wanted to make that one. She turns in Tyche's direction with a slight pout. "Really? Only once a year? Well, I'll look forward to next year's!" Then she makes her way over to Gaspar. "Marquis Gaspar, how lovely to see you this evening."

Amusement dances within Lord Cassimir's eyes as they rest comfortably upon Duke Cristoph's visage. "Well, the same cannot be said for we Invernos," he replies with an arch smile, chancing to peek down at his height-stunted cousin veritably drenched in pink aeterna. "I think we shall have this meeting, and the topic will not once drift to you. Not a single sentence uttered will mention your name. How about it, my lord?" And when that humorous moment has passed and gaze drifts lazily away from those in present company, it happens to capture the reclining Marquis Gaspar near the fireplace. Eye contact ensues, and a hand is raised with an easy, casual motion in greeting. "That is an excellent moniker for your blade, Lord Yuri. Do be sure to let me know which of the many talented smiths in the city present the weapon to you, so I can patronize them myself when the time comes."

Sit Floppington spots Nijah and wags his way up to the Whisper with those soulful eyes gazing up. He does a dance on his forepaws but does not jump much.

Vicarin walks away after nodding politely to Rowenova and then walks over to where Romulius seems to be standing. "Good evening, Lord Blackshore." he says with a smile. "I'm sure my cousin has already but welcome to Saik tower all the same." he beams, unusually for him, and then directs his attention to the lady with him, (Natasha), to whom a formal bow is given. "I am Lord Vicarin Saik, my Lady. Welcome to Saik tower. You grace us with your presence. Pardon me, but could I ask who I have the honor of addressing?"

Norah smiles to Medeia and turns to Duke Ryhalt. "Is that so? A pleasure, Duke Farshaw. You are welcome to come dine at Eswyndol any time you'd like."

"It's a pleasure to meet you as well, Lord Romulius Blackshore," Kalani replies as she straightens from the curtsy and tips her head subtly, considering the question. "Perhaps the better span of a year, maybe a bit longer perhaps. Of house Saik, she is one of the brightest jewels and a genuine asset to her house."

"I would certainly never tell you the meeting was in one place while conducting it in an entirely different one," Cristoph replies to Tyche, his voice picking up an innocent note all his own. "On my honor and such." Is he teasing again? Maybe? Their footsteps are carrying them further through the room and the suggestion to find somewhere to sit is met with a glance at the seating arrangements. And since everyone else around him is having eye contact with Gaspar, Cristoph will glance once around them and then at unfamiliar Marquis. He's curious, but not curious enough to ask or interrupt anyone and then he gestures at one of the tables. "It looks as good as any."


"May we sit with you, cousin?"

Piccola bends to set down her glass of whiskey on a nearby table. "I think we may want to take a seat for a few minutes before taking to the dance floor." Like she has a plan for the night, or something. "I trust that you've been well. And that you have been keeping us both out of and in trouble." The House, she must mean. Anyhow, she waits for Ember to sit down before telling her quietly, "I will see if I can find something you might enjoy, Baroness."

Because she promised booze.



Drake looks over at Norah, as she approaches and asks for an introduction. His eyes always wander a little, though he notices she is also expecting so he tries to behave himself a bit. Still, he takes her hand, and bows while holding it lightly. "A pleasure to meet you. Drake Wyvernheart. It was Wyrmguard once, but we moved." He doesn't seem to mind Nijah forgetting, since it's been a while. "Not a problem at all." He adds, aside, "You know, I have been working on my conversational Eurusi. I should try a phrase or two some time, but I don't want to embarass myself."

3 House Mazetti Guardians, Sirra, a very quiet maid, an indeterminate number of cats, Lance, a rebellious swan that likes to headbutt leave, following Alessia.

Ryhalt smiles to Norah as Medeia introduces him to her. "A pleasure to meet you, Marquessa Norah. Yes, it's been a good many years since I've gotten to sail freely, but it's still a deep love of mine. Thank you for the invitation. I have heard of your house from time to time, but don't believe I've had the opportunity to meet any of you. Seems we ought to have somewhat in common."

"That's really good to know. I shall keep that in mind if I'm left looking for a partner." Calla replies to Drake with a bit of a wink before turning her attention back on Orland and nods emphatically in reply to his first. "I couln't have said it better." She says before cheeks pinken up just a bit and she takes his offered hand and shakes her head. "Of course I don't mind. I'm not a perfect dancer myself." She adds before leading him towards the dance floor quickly before he changes his mind.

Samira arrives rather late to the event, although this seems to suit the small artist well enough by allowing her to make a quiet entrance without any fuss - or so she hopes. She begins navigating her way through the crowd, although she mercifully keeps her elbows to herself rather than pushing her way through in her quest to locate a drink. Observant eyes scan the gathering for familiar faces as she walks, waving in Medeia's direction in an attempt to catch her eye.

Romulius gives another nod to Kalani as he is introduced. "The pleasure is mine, Lady Seliki." He seems content enough to leave it at that, the words given with a warm smile but his cerulean eyes seem unable to focus on any one particular face as he scans the crowd. Vicarin's approach and greeting is returned with another polite dip of his chin before he speaks again, "Lord Saik. Your family's hospitality is greatly appreciated." There's a quick gesture to Natasha on his arm then as he makes the introduction on her behalf, "The Princess Natasha Thrax, my lord." He avoids his usual addition of all manner of titles and honorifics, though it's not clear to whose benefit that might be.

That sly smile bloomed into something truly radiant then at Ember's recollection. "Indeed it was, my lady. That was a very enjoyable night, if memory serves me correctly." There was a soft bit of laughter before his looked back to Piccola and then again to Ember. "My darling cousin is truly just as much of a delight as she is dangerous, even if she doesn't fully know it all of the time." He winked to Piccola once more just as Medeia approached and smiled brightly. "Lady Medeia." He leaned close and kissed each cheek of the hostess with a hand squeezing her own for a moment. "The pleasure is mine, my lady, I assure you. What wonderful company and how magnificent this event already is!" It was then that he spotted the handsome, confident countenance of Cassimir and the smile changed again, looking over his friend with a strong nod and wind. At the look from Cristoph, Gaspar grinned and flicked a friendly wave. Piccola stole his attention for a bit. "I would be disappointed if you didn't, my lady." He made a motion next to him at the other empty chairs nearby. "I've been...'attempting' at keeping us out of trouble. I'm not sure how successful I've been."

With a plate on her box in one hand and a fork in her other, Nova moves along after Vicarin whilst her wolfy pelt seems to be angled for the shade that it can give her visage. She sometimes takes bites of the beef she plated before, making sure not to get any in the furs of her pelt headdress, though.

"Ah, so /you/ are Sir Drake. I've heard Lady Medeia speak of you. It's good to put a face to the name," Norah says graciously. Ryhalt gets a polite bow of the head. "I expect we do have much in common, Duke Farshaw," she says. Impeccably impeccable.

When Sir Floppington makes his way over to her, Nijah cannot help but smile and she kneels down to give him lots of pets! Her fingers scritching behind his ears, letting them go all floppy. "Oh Sir Flop! If you are being here than that must mean Rowenova is being close!" she peers into the crowd. "How am I missing her, my oldest friend in the city?" she squints in the crowd and gives a wave towards Rowenova, though at the moment she doesn't depart the company she's currently keeping until she's sure they've been properly cared for. "Wyrvenheart? I am not thinking that was the name last time, Wyrmguard is sounding more familiar. It is good to be seeing you again and glad that you are doing well still."


Orland barks a laugh when she's practically dragging him toward the dance floor, in case he got cold feet. He flashes a look over toward Drake, maybe having seen Calla talking to him, but then the blurring people and the movement, it doesn't matter. The young lord has a grin now spreading across his face as he comes up along behind Calla, practically stumbling already but putting his hands in the right places. "I haven't been a complete waste of educational resources," he notes with a bob of his head, waiting to listen to the music before he finds a good beat to which to start them off. "We'll go slow and I can't do anything fancy, so if you need to... please do!" He leans in to speak with her on a more private note, his smile never turning down a knotch, as his eyes flicker across Calla's shoulders, often looking at other people as they brush by on the dance floor.


Ember lets out a silent snort of breath, like a chuckle that never had a chance to fully develop, at Gaspar's grin. The Baroness takes one of the offered seats, and offers Piccola no clues as to what sort of drink she'd enjoy, only a wag of her eyebrows as if to silently throw down a challenge. While she glances around the room, Ember's eyes settle on Tyche for a moment, and she gives the Marquessa a nod from a distance.

Yuri chuckled lightly, giving a firm nod toward Cassimir, "I will certainly do that. With the embellishments I have planned to assemble on, perhaps I can put in a very good word to have your piece discounted! I may very well be dumping quite the purse out for the plans I have for it." The lord had keened in on Cassimir's gaze and there he spotted his cousin-in-law, Marquis Gaspar. His brow raised rather quickly, offering a quick wave before glancing the way of Tyche, Cristoph, then Cassimir, "Pardon me a moment; I see a gaggle of little snakes I must slither to. And seems you've seen them too!" He chuckled, parting from the group as he began to put some haste in his step as he approached the ensemble of armchairs Gaspar had originally posted in.

"She has been nothing but gracious and informative," Natasha replies to Kalani, the neutral tones of her precise, mezzo-sopranic softened by subtle affability that manifests in the faintest turn of her mouth's pliant coral line. "And you have been in Arx throughout that time as well, or longer? I've only just arrived a month ago, myself, and I've not managed to make as many acquaintances as I hoped. Business usually keeps me away from social engagements, but I think that you would know better than I how convincing the Lady Medeia can be." Good humor laces the porcelain underlay of her exterior, though with Vicarin's approach and subsequent introduction by her companion, she dips her head in an acknowledging fashion, a dark curl brushing possessively over the contour of her left cheek. "As he says, my lord. Thank you for the warm welcome. I recall your face in passing in the Crimson Square by the cordon, though admittedly it has been about two weeks ago, and the opportunity to speak with you had passed me by. I'm glad for the opportunity to rectify that this evening."

Ember has joined the a group of armchairs near a fireplace.

Norah has joined the a long table beside a dance floor.

*

"I will save up the perfect information for next year," Tyche makes the promise to a disappointed Medeia, but then she's having to deal with the two schemers near, her brows lifting in question. "I may start to regret my free approval of your meeting," she hedges with a faint laugh. "Come, let's sit at the tables, then, and you can not talk about me some more together." When Yuri makes his departure to join his cousin's husband at the fireplace, the Marquessa spies another familiar face. She smiles easily at the sight of the Baroness, and a little wave is offered. To Cassimir she asks then, "Did you wish to follow Yuri? We can all sit at the fireplace, although it was a much better location in the colder months." She looks back to Cristoph, an amused glint to the twitch of her lips, "And you and I never did get to play that clavichord, no matter how desperately we tried."

"Only good things, I hope," Drake says to Norah. He seems not to notice Orland looking back at him, but he can be pretty distractable. "The Lady Medeia has been a good traveling companion, so I'd be glad to sing her praises." He nurses his glass... "Sometimes I travel abroad to carry a lady's luggage."

Those long floppy ears of the soulful hound are quite clean due to all of the consistent grooming that the good boy Sir Flop, himself, always receives. Meanwhile, those soulful eyes gaze up at Nijah with expressive gratitude. Whenever Rowenova's name is mentioned, he looks to the scout in question who notices him and then she looks up with a smile that she cannot help before lifting her fork in a sorta wave to the Whisper. "Good to see you!" says she, calling it out with Northern volume over the party crowd.

After the warm greeting from Gaspar, to which Medeia replies quietly, she looks around and notices Samira. She makes a dash toward her - gracefully, of course - to greet her. "Samira, you came, good. Eat, drink, rub elbows. Ah! You should meet..." She looks around. "Do you know Marquessa Tyche and Lord Cassimir? Cass is my cousin. I'm fairly certain they both like art." Overhearing a bit of exchange between Drake and orah, she drifts by, teasing, "Don't get the wrong idea, Lord Drake, I talked about you losing the duel." There's a wink after. Really, she likes the Oathlander just fine. Her ears catch her name on Natasha's lips and she calls over, "Princess, I can only convince people of something they already want."


And so, the General goes on a quest.

It is a short one. Along the way, she holds up a hand in greeting to Yuri, and then sticks a thumb back at the couches by the fireplace, where Gaspar is. A suggestion, of course. Meanwhile, she goes to one of the drink tables, calmly takes up a bottle of Saikland whiskey and a glass, and takes both over to where Ember is sitting. There, she uncorks the bottle, pours one out into the glass, and passes it over to the Bloody Baroness.

And she continues her conversation there.



Piccola has joined the a group of armchairs near a fireplace.

Kalani curtseys to Lord Vicarin as well, introductions being exchanged as they are she has a moment to share a smile with the Thraxian Princess, "She is all of that yes, and convincing is a good word. Persuasive, also a good word. Inspiring as well, to name a few," she flips open the small folding fan she's holding and uses it to gently stir the air again, laughing quietly as Medeia calls her reply over to Natasha's words. "When she's right," a head tip toward Medeia, "she's right."

Taking his one hand in hers and placing her other on his shoulder, Calla pulls up close to Orland and tips her head up to look at him. "I'm sure you'll do just fine." She reassures him with a grin before she returns his whispers with some of her own as she waits for him to start them off.

"Then you are already one of the most unique people I've ever met, my lady," Natasha calls back to Medeia in quicksilver riposte, the subtle turn of her mouth lifting even higher. "I don't think I've ever met a genuine mindreader before."

Norah smiles at Drake, patting his hand. "Only good things, I assure you." Then, the marquessa takes a seat.

Yuri has joined the a group of armchairs near a fireplace.

As Drake and Norah begin speaking, Nijah dips her head to them both and slips away with a final "Please be enjoying yourself," she says before she moves off to mingle with the rest of the crowd to make sure that everybody else is receiving good attention and drink. She makes a beeline for Rowenova, Flop almost certainly close in tow. "Rowenova," she beams. "It is being too long, we really must meet somewhere a little quieter to be catching up more properly. Are you well? Anything you are needing? Drink? Food?" Nijah offers with a polite dip of her head.

Vicarin dips his head once more to Natasha. "Ah yes, your Highness. I was merely making sure all was right with our friends.. " he says and then when he catches Kalani's curtsey, he returns a bow of his own. "Lady Seliki, please be welcome. We haven't had a chance to speak in the past I'm afraid. I am Vicarin Saik." he says, giving his name just in case. Then he looks behind him and gestures to Rowenova. "This is scout Rowenova, an important member of the Halfshav military. She also happens to be Baroness Lucita's protege and is a most wonderful story teller." he informs Romulius, Natasha and Kalani.

"Ahh. Well. My understanding is," Drake says to Medeia, "That I might have the opportunity for a rematch soon at... some other event, eh?" he raises his brows at the lady. "Because I have been practicing." He gives Norah another smile, though it's reasonable to him why she'd grab a seat rather than a drink.

The look of uncertainty that Samira wears fades as Medeia comes to her rescue. A genuine grin warms her expression, momentarily banishing her cautious frown. "A promise is a promise, yeah?" she answers, then leans in to murmur conspiratorially in her friend's ear. "I don't think I've met either one of them yet." Her gaze sweeps the crowd in search of the two Medeia points out to her.

Cassimir follows the gaggle of persons he arrived with to a table, weaving his way through the crowd of bodies as they stand about and carry on with their own jaunty discussions. When Lord Yuri pardons himself and departs to join Marquis Gaspar, he casts a curious glance over his shoulder and half-heartedly waves to the man's back as he walks away. He has lapsed into a comfortable silence while they change locales. It is not until Lady Medeia flags him down that he finally turns about and to fully face his Saik cousin. A moment passes wherein Cassimir struggles to maintain a degree of composure due to the sudden introduction, but it is quite quickly assumed, at least in time to make proper introductions to Samira. "Yes, ah...a pleasure to meet you." The Inverno shifts his gaze between Medeia and this new acquaintance. "I am sorry, I did not catch your name. As for art, yes, I do possess some adeptness with charcoal. Sketches mostly. I'm not a savant, by any means." His right hand raises up in a fist, obscuring his mouth while clearing his throat.

Always quick to smile despite an otherwise grim appearance, a flash of white escape Romulius's lips in a grin at the exchange between Natasha and Medeia before he turns his attention towards Vicarin and the newly approached Rowenova. "I've already had the fortune, thankfully. Rowenova was among the first faces to greet me on this most recent return to Arx." A warm smile and a nod is offered her way as he adds, "It is good to see you."

"Thank you, Lord Vicarin," Kalani replies with another smile as Vicarin indicates Rowenova, to whom Kalani beams a radiant smile. "Nova and Sir Flop, of course," always remembering to greet the faithful hound that accompanies his human (Rowenova, that is), turning her attention back to Vicarin. "We haven't officially met before, no, but in a peripheral sense, almost, but not quite, but now we have."

"It's simply not meant to be," Cristoph states of the clavichord, shaking his head in some approximation of deep sadness. But there's an amused glint in his eye as he occasionally leans over to speak with Tyche in a quieter volume, a hand resting at her hip. He lifts a hand to wave off Yuri as the man seems intent upon leaving them. It's in that motion that he notices a friendly wave flicked to him by Gaspar, an eyebrow is lofted and then he lifts his chin in a bit of a polite upnod. They're finding their way to a table next and so that's where he takes himself as well, pulling a chair out for Tyche before he finds his own.


Leading a dance was so easy, to those born into the life. Orland makes a basic misstep as the begin, it's a small failing, but one that sets them off against the music in the wrong way. He winces a little but at least the conversation between them can make up for the off beat steps. Orland does relax though after some time, eyeing the crowds with a cynical smile, talking about a few of them no doubt, his eyes moving toward Piccola, Ember, then toward Cassimir. Whatever he's saying, his smile remains and then he focuses more attentively on Calla, with a laugh.

Tyche has joined the a table with inlaid Saikland glass tiles.

Continuign to talk to Natasha, Medeia grins. "Ah, I just know people. No mind reading required." There's a coyness in her expression as she glances back at Drake. "Oh, yes? I'm looking forward to it!" Then she slips back to Samira to ease things with Cassimir. She smiles up at her cousin. "Mm, this is my long time friend Samira Culler. She is an artist, runs Rabble Art in the Lowers."

Cristoph has joined the a table with inlaid Saikland glass tiles.

Whatever spirited warmth is buttressed by Natasha's ivory veneer is made up for by Romulius' infinitely more expressive countenance, and there's a surreptitious glance of gratitude angled his way before the next introduction makes its circuit in their small cluster. "Well met, Scout Rowenova. If you had been one of the first to greet my lord Blackshore upon his return, it seems I may owe you some small degree of gratitude as well. He has been gone for too long and in spite of his highly independent personality, it heartens me all the same that he's found his return agreeable."

Drake listens politely to introductions about art, without asserting himself for the moment... though while that's happening, he slips away, grabs a plate with some meatballs on it, and then comes back.

Introductions! "A pleasure to meet you," Tyche smiles to Samira, but she doesn't go further than what Cassimir offers, because she's distracted by a murmured whispered shared by the Duke. She glances at him, and then toward the fireplace, considering her next words before she offers him some sort of quiet explanation. She claims the chair he has pulled out, a hand lifting to touch his at the back, lingering there a moment before she lowers herself into the seat. When Cassimir likewise joins (or decides his night draws him elsewhere) she'll settle into a comfortable conversation at the table. With wine. Lots of wine!

Calla tries to help Orland as much as she can when he gets them off on the wrong foot, literally. When pulled closer, she too, giggles softly in response to something whispered by the Amadeo lord, her one hand lifting off his shoulder to toss saffron tresses back over her shoulder before replying.

Samira's intense gaze may make it seem like she's sizing Cassimir up, probably due to her serious demeanor. "Lord Cassimir, nice to meet you. Always glad to meet another artist. Is there a particular subject that you seem inclined to sketch most often?" She sneaks a grateful look to Medeia for easing her into introductions, then turns to offer a nod to Tyche. "Marquessa Tyche."

Drake heads in the direction of the tiled table just because he now has meatballs. It's the thing about this kind of party. You have a drink in one hand, and food in the other, and at some point you have to set something down, somewhere. Seeing Cristoph is here he gives him a nod also. "Hope you don't mind," he says to Tyche. "I was just listening in to the conversation about art."

Nova already has a plate (with a fork sticking out of the food) in hand, and so she answers the food and drink question by showing the goods to Nijah before offering out her free arm to hopefully hug the Whisper. "Far too long! I am really glad I saw you here. Winner Dinner sometime, for sure! I am good on the food and drink." After the introduction, Nova gives a grateful look to Vicarin before quietly repeating her title and name. She soon nods to those to whom Vicarin has introduced her. "Good to see you, too, Lady Kalani Lord Romulius." Then, to Natasha, Nova nods. "Well met, your highness. I did not do too much, though. I am not sure I deserve all that, but thank you for earnest kindness." After quietly saying that, Nova looks back to Nijah. "Have you all met this lovely person?" That, she asks of the nobles near Vicarin.

Medeia makes her way toward the center of the room with her assistant at her side. He rings a bell to catch the attention of the party. Once things are settled, Medeia beams at the crowd assembled. "Oh, it absolutely warms my heart to see you all here tonight. Truly, I am thrilled for your companionship, and also your generosity." Briefly, she does her best to make eye contact with every person in the room as she speaks. "My uncle was a beloved figure for many, and Arvum grieved with my family in a dark time. However, we will endure, and we will rebuild - you're all helping to see to that. Tonight? We put together 460,000 silver to go toward those efforts." Her head shakes slightly, teeth holding her lower lip. "I couldn't be more grateful. Now, if you'll all give me a moment, the raffle proper will be underway in just a moment and I will announce the lucky winners."

Of course, Sir Flop is all about the pets from Nijah and Kalani, soaking up the affection from both of themm.

Whatever it is that Tyche is explaining to Cristoph, it has him looking up briefly to the ceiling and then straight ahead and then over to her again. He turns the hand over that she's touched, squeezes her fingers once in response and then slips into the chair next to her. As Drake arrives, he nods his head to him. "Good evening, Lord Drake. It's good to see you again. That's a nice plate of meatballs." His attention drifts briefly to Medeia and Samira as introductions are being laid out. "Duke Cristoph Laurent," he offers before flagging someone down for wine.

"Samira, are you finding everything to your liking?" Nijah asks her as she wanders through the crowd to check up on everybody, to make sure glasses are filled and good company is being had, before she slips into Rowenova's arm, giving her a tight, warm hug. She looks to the other people sat with Vicarin and she shakes her head with a smile. "I have not met them, no," she smiles and she dips her head towards Vicarin, Romulius and Kalani. "So good to be making your acquaintance, if you are needing anything please do not be hesitating to ask me," she offers with a beaming smile for them all.

When Medeia announces the beginning of the raffle, Nijah stands up straight, giving sir flop that last little bit of pets, her hands clasped before herself.

Polite nods and smiles, it seems, are the order for the evening, and Romulius offers them to Nijah as Rowenova presents her. The greeting that is about to escape his lips, though, dies at the ringing of the bell and his attention turns towards the hostess.

Vicarin says in Eurusi, "Pleasure meeting you as well."

Ryhalt glances from his quiet converse with Norah at the table near the dance floor when Medeia seeks to gain their attention. He smiles to hear of the success of the evening and applauds.

Drake has joined the a table with inlaid Saikland glass tiles.

is Vicarin's reply to Nijah before he looks at Medeia.

Kalani crouches briefly to rest one hand lightly on Sir Flop's head, smoothing along his ears as the bell is rung and the introductions continue to expand outward to now include Nijah. "A pleasure to meet you as well," she murmurs and falls silent as well to listen to Medeia.

After a big hug to Nijah, Nova lets go before turning to watch Medeia over there. So does Sir Flop, as well.

Drake laughs at Cristoph's comment. "Well. I didn't make them, so my compliments to the chef I suppose. But I did need to set them down somewhere." He then sits down on the chair on the opposite side of Tyche with a little bit of a casual flop. Medeia is about to speak, so he looks up.

She is about to say that she hasn't; before Natasha can address Nijah at Rowenova's introduction, however, the bell rings, drawing her attention unerringly towards where Medeia has taken the pedestal. The soft greeting in Eurusi does catch her notice briefly, given away by a glance to Vicarin, but whatever she has to say about it is tabled for now.

When Medeia calls for their attention, Calla stops in her dancing to give the hostess her attention and then a round of applause when she announces how much silver was raised by the event.

Cassimir takes up a rather casual stance, the flat of one hand resting comfortably against the midnight fabric of his duskweave jerkin. Half-lidded eyes focus upon Samira's features, curiously searching the intensity of her stare, but otherwise maintains an open countenance, friendly enough, despite the unvarying tone of voice when he responds. "Anything and everything that I do not want to forget. I can take a moment to write a thorough description of a unique face, or some object which has piqued my interest, but sometimes words cannot do its appearance justice. So, I taught myself to draw, to preserve in its physical form." The Inverno lord pauses a moment, considering his response after it has been spoken. A shrug of his broad shoulders follows. "I suppose my reasons are rather more practical than anything else. I will, of course, ask what you prefer to draw, paint, or sculpt, as it were, but your response may rob me of an opportunity to visit your gallery and see such works on display."

When Drake joins them, Tyche looks mildly confused for a moment, but then it clicks - art! Cassimir! Samira! She was totally listening and not at all distracted by the whispered conversation she was sharing with the Duke. "Lord Drake," she remembers his name quite easily, either because she tucked it away in her brain from their first meeting, or because Cristoph kindly acknowledges him first. "Are you a fan of art? Do you paint, sculpt, draw, admire?" she offers several different options for his engagement in such, a grin curving her lips. "I am only an admirer myself, but apparently my cousin has some skill," she looks to Cassimir, a clear adoration for the man in her expression, "Cousin, will you draw me sometime? I promise to be the perfect subject." With Cristoph at her side, she leans in a touch closer to him, an earlier whispered remark given an equally quiet answer, and then she settles comfortably back against her chair. "Shall we drink?" she indicates a servant passing by with wine, easily scoring glass after glass for those at the table.

Orland looks like he got smacked, however lightly, playfully, on the shoulder. He grins from ear to ear. Whatever he said, clearly earned some growing humor between the two. However, the announcements for the raffle have him give Calla one last twirl on the floor, before he too comes to a pause at her side. "That's a lot," he remarks then settles quietly, to appreciate the cause.

Macario saunters in. Tall, even for well, for anyone, he's damn tall. Lithe. Dark eyes and hair. Well trained noble confident. You get the idea. Several strides bring him into the room, and he quickly has a peek around for some wine.

Fortescue is holding a beautiful cut glass bowl filled with gilded slips of paper with names written on them. Another servant has come by with a case of wine, to hand out to winners who are present. Medeia clears her throat again. "For the first time ever, this wine is being given to the public. This has, historically, been a Saik private reserve. It was among my uncle's favorites and I have to agree with him on that. This case is special because I worked with the vintners to have his signature spice blend added. So, whenever you're brave enough to open the bottle, you'll be drinking it the way he would have." Her voice wavers slightly, but her smile twitches up higher. "Okay! The first bottle goes to..." Her hand plunges into the bowl and swirls around as she looks away to draw one out. She reads it. "Lady Mabelle Laurent! Who was unable to make it tonight, so I will ensure hers gets delivered promptly." She draws another name, "Lord Ciro Seraceni! Who also is not here." Then, "Marquessa Norah Eswynd and Marquis Gaspar Tessere!" THe servant seeks them out to give them their bottles.

"I am absolutely a fan of art," Drake says to Tyche. "But mostly as an admirer. I haven't the skill for drawing. But some time I thought it might be a bit useful. If nothing else, for field work." He gets a glass of wine, as they are coming around and it's the right polite thing to join in on. "Though I am increasingly good at hiring people for commissions and telling them what I'd like them to do, if that counts for anything." He raises a glass to her. "I think you'd be a lovely portrait."

Norah looks pleased and surprised to have won. The bottle is brought over to her and she smiles warmly at Medeia. "It will be treasured, Lady Medeia."

"This is certainly the best table to set your plate of meatballs down on," Cristoph is remarking to Drake before something spoken to him quietly by Tyche catches his ear, and he tips his head in her direction and a slow smile spreads across his face. "Yes, wine is good. I thought I just--" maybe he didn't flag someone down. Someone is flagged. Wine shows up. He captures his glass and he takes a generous swallow. He quiets a bit as Medeia begins working through the announcements for some of the winners.

Dark eyes snap over to Vicarin and Nijah smiles warmly upon hearing the familiar tones of her homeland, she replies in kind and bows her head towards him. As winners are announced, Nijah gives a polite applause to the names read, and gives an especially pleased smile towards Norah as her name is called. "Is everything to your liking?" she asks, turning her attention back to the group she's found herself with.

Nijah says in Eurusi, "It is a wonderful pleasure to make your acquaintance as well."

The duke's introduction receives Samira's attention, a polite nod directed to Cristoph before Samira turns focus upon Cassimir's response. "That sounds wise. Images have always come easier to me than words, though I admire those who are eloquent at expressing themselves that way. As for the rest, I'll leave you in suspense until you visit Rabble Art." Nijah's question prompts a faint smile and a nod, a murmured greeting offered to the familiar woman although as Medeia addresses the gathering, she quiets to listen.

At the mention of his name, Gaspar looked up and stood with a simple smile, clapping in quiet congratulations for the rest of the winners and dipped his head to Medeia in thanks. He held up his bottle for a quick moment. "It will be a challenge to keep this from being consumed, given my love for wine, but in memory of the Dominus, I will ensure that it stays perfectly stored in this exact condition for as long as I am able."

The drawing of names seems to be going fairly smoothly. Medeia reaches for the fifth slip of paper and draws out, "Duchess Lisebet Ashford! Ah, another absent winner, she'll be delightes to get the delivery." And next, "Baroness Calla Vaevici! Congratulations my friend." The servant delivers the bottle to the saffron-haired baroness as Medeia draws name seven: "Count Duarte Amadeo!" Another delivery to make. And next, "Lady Alessia Mazetti!" More delivering. The messengers will be busy.

Each face by her perimeter and periphery are taken in with a steady gaze, Natasha's eyes flitting to Kalani, Vicarin, Nijah, Rowenova and Romulius in turn while quietly listening to the gradually unfurling list of raffle winners. Eventually, something baits the line away from it, the lure tugging her attention away, briefly, to follow the spectral wisps of distant conversation about art. Her midnight scrutiny casts a wide net over the nearby sea of unfamiliar colors, head craning over the pale curve of an exposed shoulder.

The Eurusi tongue will always draw a look that borders on wariness from Romulius, though he is quick to force the smile's return as he offers a nod of affirmation to Nijah. "Very much so, my lady. The Lady Saik and her family can always be counted on as phenomenal hosts." His eyes follow the turn of Natasha's head briefly before he turns his attention back to the raffle announcements.

Ryhalt claps loudly as the first round of winners is announced, grinning as Norah receives her bottle. Hearing his sister is winner in the second round, he claps again. Incentive to visit!

Calla was distracted by Lord Orland's whispering that she almost missed her name being called. "I won?" She asks, a little surprised as she gracefully takes the bottle of wine when it's delivered into her hands, craddling it to her chest most carefully. "I've never won anything before."

When names are called for the prizes, Tyche offers her sincere congratulations to the winners with the clap of her hands, but she's distracted, still, when Drake speaks of portraits. A laugh, and she lifts fingers to brush over a porcelain cheek. "That brings to mind a game, Lord Drake. Line up all of the artists in the city, blindfold them, and see if they might /still/ be able to capture beauty in portrait. A prize for the winner." She looks to Cristoph to see if he agrees with the cleverness of her game, a brow arching, "Would you let me blindfold you and have you draw me? Do you think you could?" The challenge is issued, and she sweeps up her glass of wine, bringing it to her lips to take a long sip.

Kalani takes a moment, while the winners are being announced, to excuse herself from the small knot of people and winds her way through the room toward the refreshment table to help herself to a glass of wine.

Nijah smiles over at Romulius, the wariness her brief exchange in Eurusi might have given him she doesn't seem to notice, instead just beaming and dipping her head towards him. "Please, I am Nijah, Apprentice Whisper. But I am glad to be hearing it, Lady Medeia is my recent Patron and I am hoping to be helping her with more events in future, perhaps I will be seeing you there?"

Orland laughs to Calla's surprise, "I think we should play cards more often, then you'll get used to the idea of winning." He notes, offering his applaud to the sounds echoing.

Cassimir's mien waxes jovial, though it is as subdued as almost every feeling he attempts to express. "Very well. I will visit Rabble Art in the coming week and discover the answer myself." The foreign language dripping eloquently off the tongues of those present in the room draws the lord's attention away from the conversation at present, but the search for its speaker is short-lived, seeing as how he has just been solicited to draw his cousin's likeness. The man twists his torso, both arms folding over the breadth of his chest, to cast a side-long glance over one shoulder toward his cousin. The corners of his lips twitch with suppressed amusement. "No, I only draw subjects that I fear will disappear from my life or memory. I would not think of tempting fate in such a fashion."

"Lord Romulius Blackshore. A pleasure." Romulius's eyes move from Nijah towards Medeia for a moment before he answers the question, his voice only loud enough to carry it over the low din of the festivities to her, "I should hope. I have been woefully unreliable attending her various affairs, though I am always glad to hear how well they are received."

Aha! Wine. Macario navigates his way through the crowd, smiles and nods and all that, but he's quite decided on the wine. There's a proper investigation of the refreshment table before he selects a glass of wine. It's red. He hopes it's dry. Forward dark fruits.

Drake also applauds for the winner. It seems almost a waste not to drink such fine wine, but preserving it is perhaps the more noble thing. He turns a look toward Tyche, and listens to her suggestion for a game. "Ah. Can artists draw what they cannot see? Do you give them the opportunity to see with their hands? I have been given to understand it works for the blind." Clearly a serious question. No, he says it with a bit of a wink, but only after a second of deadpan.

Even Medeia can feel the excitement as the last four bottles remain to be called, but she sends a wink to Calla, saying "You won my friendship!" But then she takes a deep breath to keep the momentum going. "Just a few left, good luck, everyone! Alright, the next bottle goes to... Samira Culler!" She grins at her firend as the servant delivers the bottle to her while she draws the next name. "Marquessa Tyche Inverno!" The next name is another delivery to an absent participant, "Princess Adrienne Pravus!" Then, Medeia pauses looking out at everyone. "The very last. Oh, I'm excited /for/ you." Her hand swishes dramatically in the bowl, for a few seconds longer than on any other to extend the drama. "Lord Orland Amadeo! Congratulations." That final bottle is delivered to its new owner. "Again, thank you, all of you. Please stay and enjoy the food, music, company. You're all the best. Also!" She motions towards Nijah. "If you have not yet my fabulous protege, Apprentice Whisper Nijah, be sure to do yourself the favor of introducing yourself. I'm excited to be her patron and look forward to all the wonderful things we will accomplish together."

The marquis had an ear turned to elsewhere in the room and with the confident tongue of a friend spilling perfectly picked words to someone else, he grinned broadly. With the new winners announced, he rose again and offer up some more applause. He looked at Tyche with the very same look she'd given him and for a moment, his soul was at peace for more than it had been in some time while he shared a quick smile with the Inverno beauty.

"Yes, it sounds like a very good game to play. It would probably result in a lot of unique art," Cristoph comments in between sips of his wine. He leans back in his seat, his arm draped over the back of the chair next to him. There are more winners to be announced and he quiets long enough to hear their names called. When one of them is Tyche's, he shifts backward a bit to give her the room she might need to accept it, however that's needed. And of course, he claps as the delivery is hand out is concluded.

The overheard discussion between her childhood friend and the hostess' Whisper draws a curious incline of Natasha's head in that direction, but it is overall not terribly obtrusive. Ultimately, relief finds a stamp on her near-elfin mien at seeing her companion engage another in pleasant conversation, before her scrutiny is once again drawn away to find an anchor in the proceedings. With the final names announced - the last especially familiar, and inspires the threads of distant melancholy memory - she disengages her hand briefly from its place in Romulius' elbow and joins the rest in a round of applause.

Ryhalt claps once more as the final set of winners is announced. He glances to Nijah, taking note of her name, but doesn't go to make an introduction yet, returning to conversation with Norah.

Balancing a small plate in one hand - the same hand holding the glass of wine - Kalani is adding a sample of this, a sample of that, to the small plate she's holding. A cordial nod is shared with the other refreshment-table browser, "The red is a lovely color, I'm sure the taste will live up to the expectations," is murmured as she adds one more thing to her plate with the intention to sneak some of the food to Sir Floppington.

Cassimir unfurls his hands from his chest to clap languidly for the winners.

Nijah smiles and she nods to Romulius. "This is the first of mine, but I am hoping it will only be the first of many. I am hoping we will be working together a great deal, after all there is so much more for us to be doing," she smiles. And as she's speaking the results are called out, and Medeia gives Nijah her own introduction and the apprentice whisper maintains a beaming smile, even as her cheeks heat up into a blush and a bow. "Thank you," she says. "I am looking forward to all of the things we will be doing, and I am glad to be meeting all of you!"

Calla chuckles softly as her cheeks pinken up a bit when called out by Medeia. "So true!" She calls back. When Lord Orland wins a bottle for himself, she applauds all the winners, careful of the bottle in her arms as she does.

"Do you suggest, Lord Drake, that once they have seen my face they would so easily forget it with a blindfold?" Tyche wonders of Drake, her question innocent, but the danger behind the words clear. She flashes him a grin, shaking her head, "They would have time to proper study. It isn't a game I've thought through extensively!" She hears her name called as a winner, her brows lift and she laughs, "Well look. I won you wine for your meeting!" she says with a wave of her hand between Cristoph and Cassimir. "I will leave it in the study, you drink it when you're both ready." It is delivered, and she offers her gratitude, placing the bottle on the table to be admired. She did not miss Cassimir's clever dodge of her seeking a drawing, and she cannot help but laugh once more, "Okay, Cass. You don't have to draw me, as long as you always say such beautiful words."

Orland doesn't look surprised he won. Though there is some amusement to it. "Thank you," he tells to those close enough. As the bottle is delivered to him, he does the crass thing. He asks for it to be UNCORKED. Yep, right there, he gets a servant to help him and a 'pop' is heard. The cork is removed and he salutes to the sky with the bottle before he clinks it against Calla's bottle, and then downs a swig. "Ooo, I can see why he liked it. It has nice hints of tobacco, and.. what is that.." he takes another slosh of liquid, from the bottle, "Leather? Hmm, that's different." Another swig to investigate further.

"Good. It's not a personal gallery, though I've some pieces there. You'll be able to see a collection of artwork from Lowers talent," Samira notes to Cassimir, hesitating before adding a last thought. "You may wish to stay alert on your way to and from the art center." Indicating he'll stick out rather conspicuously in the area. She applauds for the winners being announced, but clearly doesn't expect her own name to be called. Her gaze snaps to Medeia when she realizes she's among the winners, grinning faintly as she accepts the bottle. "This'll be reserved for a special occasion, I think. Whenever one arises."

Vicarin brings his hands together in polite applause before looking at Rowenova and asking something in hushed tones. Turning back to Romulius, Kalani and Natasha, he says, "I hope you'll find the food to your liking. Everything turns out superbly where Medeia is involved." he comments.

Yuri has left the a group of armchairs near a fireplace.

Calla raises her brows at Orland when he asks for his bottle to be opened, gauging his reaction when he takes a taste. "Tobacco and Leather?" she asks, looking dubiously down at her own bottle of the stuff.

Bigsby - A Thoughtful Looking Young Man in Nondescript Clothing arrives, delivering a message to Medeia before departing.

"You're rather invested in deciding our beverages," Cristoph decides when Tyche tells both him and Cassimir she's placing the bottle in the study for them. He shifts his chair forward and leeeeeans over the table some to speak with the other man in a low enough voice that Tyche will be unable to hear. Then when he's done, he drapes himself back in his chair with his glass of wine.

Quite happy to receive snacks, Sir Flop gratefully regards Kalani with those expressive eyes and a gentle wagging. Meanwhile, Nova has found herself a proximal seatuation, where she snacks away at her plated food but looks up after swallowing down a big bite. She definitely nods before a quiet reply to Vicarin's question.

"Ahh. So they have an opportunity to see first. Why, no," Drake says, shaking his head. "I don't think yours is a face so easily forgotten," he says. "Many an artist would travel the world for such inspiration."

The cork is grabbed back and stoppered back, as best as it can be, while Orland nods to the way out, "It's got some fruit notes to it too." He saw her expression, "It's a dry wine though. If you prefer the sweet stuff, I don't think more than a few sips will get passed you. Although, maybe it's better left corked on a shelf somewhere, to gain dust, and value. Never know, a few generations from now," he lifts up a shoulder in a shrug. He looks around, no one noticed, so he smirks back to Calla, lowering his voice again.


And then, Piccola rises, takes Ember's hand, and leads her to the dance floor.

It is clear that the General knows how to dance. Someone must have brutally implanted the correct way to do so long ago. Or recently, who knows? She elects to lead, which makes sense given that she's the one wearing pants. On the other hand, she's about half-a-foot shorter than Ember, which makes for a sort of awkward waltz or whatever it is that she's doing with her.

She leans her head up to murmur something to the Baroness, while dancing.



Piccola has left the a group of armchairs near a fireplace.

Ember has left the a group of armchairs near a fireplace.

Romulius hasn't let his own smile fade though he returns Nijah's nod as he comments, "You've made an excellent choice of patron. The Lady Saik is as ept at navigating this city's challenges as any. The Lord Eswynd is a good friend and a better man, I was pleased to hear of their courtship, knowing that she will be a fixture in the Isles." He gives a quick turn of his head to whisper something quietly to Natasha, the sound lost in the chamber's noise before he addresses Vicarin. "I've not had the chance to sample it, though I do not doubt your praises will be proved true."

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

Calla will chcukle softly again at Orland, nodding before slipping her arm in his so that they an head for the exit together.

Orland leaves, following Calla.


Perhaps shockingly, the Bloody Baroness knows how to dance as well, but her dancing is like her everything else: stern and somewhat less than graceful. Her noblewoman's upbringing ensured that Ember took ballroom dancing lessons, but whether or not she's kept up with them since she was, like, sixteen... signs point to 'no.' Ember lets Piccola lead, having a quiet conversation while they dance.

When the round of applause subsides, Cassimir resumes his casual arm-crossed stance. He's well-within reach of the vibrant, auburn-haired woman seated at her table, and so he takes advantage of that relative nearness to lean in close and whisper something off-handed near Tyche's ear. When he rights himself once more, Samira's caution is duly noted, a firm nod of his head applied to his reply, "Certainly. I suppose I could dress in something less, ah...conspicuous." And then a voice has captured his attention, however discreetly, which in turn inspires the Inverno lord's intent expression to soften some. He even smiles.

Medeia slips off to the side and sips her wine, taking a few moments to herself. Her eyes do stray to the dance floor, but she's not making a move in that direction, nor toward anyone to ask. Her wine has her quite busy, it seems.

"I've no doubt, my lord." Natasha's reply to Vicarin is certain at least, and decisive as her usual wont. "If nothing else, it makes me look forward to what aesthetic and gastronomical sorcery she intends to cast in her own wedding. From what my illustrious sister-in-law tells me, she offered the Atrium Shrine in the Thrax Estate as a venue. Though speaking of refreshments..." A sliver of pale throat peeks from above her high collar at the act of craning her head in an angle to look for the tables. "...I've not had my glass of whiskey yet, and if your cousin does intend to collect a dance from myself, I'd best down it in hopes that it'll lubricate my undoubtedly rusty movements in the endeavor." She halts, however, to listen to Romulius' quiet murmur, replying back softly before she excuses herself briefly from the group in search of liquid gold.

Yuri gently meandered through the group of guests as his tension in his face ebbed away as he ushered out a rather steady sigh, peering off and away for some familiar faces. One in particular as he passed on by, seeing if the host of the evening had less of a crowd than before. He wandered his way along toward Medeia with a cant of his head politely, "Such an elegant evening, Lady Medeia! Thank you so much for the invitation. I wished to make a donation prior but I was wondering if I may be able to gift such to the fund atop of Marquis Tessere's generous donation? Besides, though, how has the evening been treating you? Silly, yes, but you seem such the astute host! I am inspired, truly."

"I was always confident in my decision to work with her," Nijah says to Romulius. "We are having similar goals and desires and helping her with that is also helping myself. Lord Eswynd was not being who I was expecting but he seems a good man, and I am looking forward to seeing what she manages to do with him. I only hope that we are able to do what we have set out to do." She glances over to Medeia as she slips apart for a few moments, Nijah giving her patron a pleasant wave as she mingles with the crowd.

Left all pitifully alone at the fireplace, Gaspar rose and made his way to a nearby table and smiled at those nearby. A hand gripped Cassimir's outside shoulder, giving it a squeeze while he smiled to the rest. "Marquessa--" He extended a hand just as the music began to swell. "--would you grace me with a dance? I'm sure Lord Cass would be delighted to have to watch over our prizes.

When Yuri approaches, Medeia straightens slightly and smiles up at the Tessere lord. "Hello, Lord Yuri! Thank you for the kind words, and for coming! Have you been having a good evening? Oh, and yes, of course, any donation you would like to make could be added now, I'd be happy to add it in.

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

Kalani shifts the plate into one hand, the other still holding the glass of wine, and aims a smile at Lord Vicarin along with a nod. "She does hold true to form," she agrees as she catches the/eyes/ from Sir Flop and promptly sneaks the faithful hound a tidbit of food from her plate. Yes, the Seliki healer is absolutely an easy mark when it comes to adorable hounds.

Macario happens to be rounding the side, a glass of wine in hand. He finds Medeia's little nook away from the action, and leans back. The lordling is tall. Quite imposingly tall. Leaning over to to her, "Lady Medeia. Cousin." He uses the title with a wafting sarcasm, and he seems to be enjoying the wine. "Nice event!"

"Kindly excuse me for a moment, your highness, Lord and Lady." Vicarin says a touch apologetically to Natasha, Romulius and Kalani, before he goes over to where Gaspar is standing, before he dips his head politely at the man before saying something to him.

"Oh, splendid. I will make a point to retrieve my offering, on behalf of House Tessere alongside my esteemed cous, Marquis Tessere. But, come now. You seem utterly apace. Would you perhaps wish to indulge me with a dance to your fancy?" Yuri canted his head lightly, settling his hand forth to her cordially as his gaze met her own for a moment during the conversation.

Cassimir's spared moment to share his thoughts with his cousin privately are met with a rich laugh, and her fingers lifting to brush over the shell of her ear. She offers no response in that moment, simply a LOOK. When secrets are being shared between Cassimir and Cristoph, Tyche slides her gaze between the two of them, leaning slightly away to murmur to Drake, "I believe they might be scheming, but they forget I have spies everywhere." She doesn't attempt to hide her 'whisper,' wanting the two men to hear it as if they might be in grave danger of the Marquessa's spies finding them out! And then there's someone else there, the former Velenosa prince, and he's asking her to dance. A mild look of surprise, and she glances toward Cristoph briefly before she slowly begins to stand. "Of course, Marquis Gaspar. One dance would be my pleasure." She brushes her hand over the Duke's shoulder as she moves past him, pausing to eye the bottles at the table. "Don't drink those yet," she warns. This is for the table at large.

Sir Flop carefully extracts those food bits from Kalani's fingers, making sure that his pristine teeth do not harm her. Meanwhile, Nova curiously watches the ongoing happenings as she snacks away at her plated food (nearly emptying it).

"Ah. I'm certain I don't see any, but I've never been that good at finding them," Drake says, smiling to Tyche's 'whisper.' Ah, but Gaspar is taking her away. His fault for being distracted by food. But that's done now, so he's back to the wine. ... the one he's supposed to be drinking, since apparently the other bottles are in reserved. "Hurry back then. I can't make promises."

"Yes, that might help matters," Samira answers decisively in response to Cassimir. Her gaze strays toward the dance floor and those who move upon it, but she seems disinclined to join them. She appears content to observe instead, the bottle of wine cradled against her body in a careful grasp.

Gaspar looked to Vicarin just as Tyche placed her hand in his with a faintly lofted brow and easy smile. "Once my dance as been completed, my lord, I would be happy to." The marquis led his companion to the floor and he slipped a hand her waist and held the other out in gentle cradled. It was a familiar posture and before he led them on that first step, he simply...looked at her. Whatever emotion he was feeling was truly difficult to tell, but there was a smile there. A smile only given for her, and not given in many long months. "Shall we?" He stepped forward with the count and off they went.

Tyche checks charm and performance at normal. Tyche fails.

Gaspar checks charm and performance at normal. Gaspar is marginally successful.

Something that's being spoken to him on the side has Cristoph laughing briefly, a fairly amused chuckle and he tips back the rest of his wine glass before replying to it. It's just in time to notice the exchange between Gaspar and Tyche, which he watches curiously. "I'll make sure there's some left for you," he calls to her as she's going off. A hand is reached back to touch her hand before she's out of reach completely. Then he settles forward again, faint amusement playing over his features as he glances in Drake's direction.

"Macario, you're in the city?" Medeia looks /up/ at the man in surprise. "It is, isn't it?" She smiles warmly and looks around at the gathering. "We'll talk more soon, but," she gestures at Yuri. "The lord has made a reasonable request." She looks to Yuri and inclines her head. "I'd be glad to." She sets down her wine glass and offers the man her hand and moves toward the dance floor.

Vicarin briefly inclines his head at Gaspar before rejoining his previous company. To Romulius, he poses the casual question, "How go the preparations my Lord? I'm afraid I have been entirely preoccupied with them as of late." he confesses.

Vicarin's question draws an inquisitive look from Romulius, head tilting as he attempts to discern his meaning, "I'm not sure I follow - preparations for what?"

Macario gives Medeia a quick wink. "Back for a while," he says quickly, though she's quick to move with Yuri. "Of course, duty calls." The wine, though, it really is quite fine!

Kalani is overheard praising Medeia: Another wonderful event hosted by a genuinely wonderful person!

"Why, for the upcoming fleet engagement of course.. Though I just realized perhaps this isn't the time for that topic.. But I couldn't find anything else to bring up." Vicarin tells Romulius with a shrug.

Tyche glances at Vicarin as the man tries to intercept the Marquis, and she seems ready to relinquish her dance partner to him, "If you need to..." But Gaspar is putting the man off, and she steps forward into his hold, her chin lifting to look up, up, up at him, because her smaller size does present some difficulties. Too many, it seems, because the first step sees the petite Marquessa stumble, and the man's foot worse off for the effort. Does her slippered foot come down on his toes? Yes. Yes it does. Twice. After the first, she graciously attempts to recover, but they are out of sync, and she stumbles once more and stomps on him again. "Marquis," she laughs, her fingers applying pressure to their hold as she attempts to keep her balance, "If you could, perhaps, be a better lead?" she teases him, knowing very well the fault is her own as her skirts get in the way of the steps.

Yuri smiled gently at Medeia's acceptance of the offer, closing his hand around her own to lead her along before he settled his gaze on Macario, "No worries, I shall have her back shortly, my lord." He allowed her the lead for the moment, extending her forward in a proper showing so she may have the light of the hall shimmer about the elegance honeysilk gown she wore. He tipped his head to her then, following the steps of Lady Saik dutifully and giving her all the moment to shine. An arm slipped along her waist gingerly, more supportively as he clutched along the leading hand equally so.

Medeia checks dexterity and performance at normal. Medeia is marginally successful.

There's a nod as realization dawns on Romulius's face, and an almost dismissive shrug, "War approaches whether we choose to dine or not. The Black Vanguard, as always, is prepared to sail where directed with the Mourning Fleet." It's stated as a matter-of-fact, and the Sword of New Hope seems to somehow possess more conviction in this matter than he typically does.

Cassimir narrows his eyes upon Gaspar as he approaches from one side and places his hand in a welcoming gesture upon his squared shoulder. A nod of greeting is spared to him, paired with a smile, though it fades some as Tyche is led to the dance floor by this particular Marquis. When the rustle of her vibrant pink skirts disappear from view, the Inverno pivots on his heel and takes up a seat at the table between Drake and Cristoph.

"It was a pleasure to meet you," Nijah dips her head towards Romulius. "If you are ever needing anything of course, as before do not be hesitating to let me know," she says as she moves away from the group to approach the dance floor, curiously watching as Medeia and others dance, scooping up a wine glass all her own finally as she watches, appreciating the spectacle as she sips the red wine.

The stumbles gave him no reason to be embarrassed at all and in fact, he laughed jovially and truly. But it was her question that had him beaming and he nodded once. "Of course, my lady." He got down on one knee very slowly and reached for her slippers, ensuring that they were snug and that this simply would not happen again. And then, from that position, he looked up at her with an odd smile. "It was my fault, entirely." A beat then, hanging in the air before he rose and held the Inverno woman a little more closely before trying once more. "Ready?" He arched a dark brow and this time, he waited until he was sure of it.

Cassimir has joined the a table with inlaid Saikland glass tiles.

"And you, Nijah. I'll not bother Lady Saik any further tonight, I am sure she is busy enough, but please offer her my regards." Romulius gives a nod and smile as he bids Nijah a farewell before she steps away, turning his attention then back towards Vicarin.

"I'll be sailing with Count Magnotta since Neilda already has our navy in hand. Since the count is in charge of the Malvici fleet, I could act as a liason as well. Foster better communication." Vicarin tells Romulius. "I've also re-trained a section of my Lion Claws to act as marines. I'm calling them Sea Lions. Or.. Seals for short. Naval Seals." he comments.

Kalani slips the rest of the food on her plate to Flop, lightly pats the hound on top of his head before carrying her empty plate and glass over to where these things are being collected. She then slips from the music hall as well, saying her farewells along the way.

Noting Nijah standing nearby whilst also watching the dancers, Samira drifts closer. She sends a sidelong glance toward the woman before returning her gaze to those upon the dance floor, her voice kept low as she offers a quiet remark.

Of course, Sir Flop happily indulged in the offered food before trying to get even more from Nova who also feeds him a few bites.


Piccola responds to something Ember says with a nod of her head.

She ceases her dancing, and offers the Baroness her arm to lead her to where Medeia is apparently dancing with Yuri. With a little throat-clearing, she raises her voice. "Cousin, if I may." An interruption. "My friend, thank you for inviting us to this event." That's to Lady Medeia. "Luck did not allow me to win a bottle of the wine, but I feel that the Gods nonetheless smile upon me tonight." She inclines her head respectfully, and then looks to Ember to make her own farewell.

It seems clear the two are readying to depart.



With Yuri at hand, or... waist, Medeia leads them around the floor in a simple step pattern. It isn't the most elegant dance, but no one's toes are smashed underfoot. The other dancers are nodded to as she passes them and occasionally she throws a look out around the room at large. Ever the hostess. She pauses when Piccola approaches. "Ah, Piccola." Her smile is warm for both Piccola and Ember. "Thank you both for c- being here. I appreciate it. Have a blessed night."


Ember and Piccola dance well enough while carrying on their conversation, but all well-enough things must eventually come to an end. Their dance slows and their conversations takes a bit of priority, before the pair edge their way off of the dance floor. Looping her arm with Piccola's once more, Ember is led toward Medeia's position, passing Romulius and offering a tiny moment of eye contact as she passes. Then, to Medeia, Ember says: "Lady Medeia. This has been a truly memorable evening. Congratulations on all you've done. The General and I must depart for now, but... we will be reunited soon. When I compete." Ember flashes Medeia a fierce grin for a split-second, and then shifts her arm looped with Piccola's. "General. Shall we?"

Libations secured, when Natasha ventures back in Vicarin and Romulius' circle, the present thread of conversation seizes her attention. "I think there are many of us torn between the desire to prepare as much we're able and deploying immediately to eradicate any further uncertainty as to who will prevail. Not that there's much choice in the matter." Gravitas paints its brush strokes over the marble cast of her countenance, though determination burns in the depths of her fathomless ochre stare, her grasp over her tumbler of whiskey tightening briefly. It is not unaccompanied; her companion is handed a glass of rum - clearly the least she can do for accompanying her on such short notice, before lips take a measured pull of liquor from her glass' crystalline edge.

With the dances commencing, there's a glance cast over the busy floor, though there is no move to approach it, or even needle those with her to take a turn. What Vicarin says manages to firmly anchor her in place, suddenly reminded, "Have you been taught the Eurusi language recently, my lord? Or was it something acquired in past travels?"


"We shall," says Piccola to Ember, putting her hand on the others' resting on her elbow.



Yuri seemed just a tad stiff but only marginally as he did his best to have Medeia shine as he soon fell into the simple step to mirror his partner. At Piccola's entry, he paused a moment to emphatically nod with a smile, waiting for farewells to be exchanged; "A pleasure to make your acquaintance, Baroness. Come see us again!"

A pack of giggling and gossiping Redreef handmaidens, A pit bull that Ember never bothered to name leave, following Ember.

Tyche watches as Gaspar drops to his knee right in the middle of the dancefloor, his hands working over the slippers that just bruised his feet. She inhales a quick breath, watching him intently, listening to his words, taking in their meaning. And then he is standing once more, asking if she is ready for round two of the torturous dancing (mostly because of her seeming lack of skill tonight). She dips her chin, "Yes." Whatever the strange moment held, her smile returns, and she seems to find her way through the remainder of the dance with little more mishap (or injury to her partner). Maybe it was an issue of a loose slipper? Problem seems solved now.

Nijah gives her farewells to Piccola and Ember as they depart while she stands by the dance floor, watching as dancing commences and she keeps her hands clasped before herself, watching it all with a gentle smile, soft words spoken to Samira.

"Count Magnotta is a brilliant tactician. You are fortunate to find yourself in his patronage, I am sure, as he is to count you as a protege. The Malvici Admiralty is an impressive force." Romulius's words come out as wholly sincere, and Ember's passing returns the same look of disinterest as earlier. A pleased smile appear at Natasha's return as he accepts the glass, raising it in a quick toast before taking a much-necessary and very belated sip of the liquor within as he listens to his companion's comments.

"I've been learning in the past, your highness, but an association with Lord Martino Malvici considerably speeded up the process and now I can converse passably in it. He lent me some books you see, that dealt with conversational ettiquette." Vicarin tells Natasha before he dips his head to Romulius. "And I'm sure the Count will be very pleased. I'll pass on your compliments to him the next time I see him, my Lord." he assures Romulius.

Ambra, a plain-faced Lycene scribe arrives, delivering a message to Tyche before departing.



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