More Art With Lou!
March 26, 2023, 7 p.m.
Arx - Ward of House Grayson - Grayson Grounds
Comments and Log
2 Culler Brutes, 1 Culler Boatswain arrive, following Raja.
2 Culler Brutes have been dismissed.
A tall block of stone is with the likeness of Prince Niklas Grayson and Prince Augustus Grayson as works in progress is what greets travelers as they pass through the Grayson Grounds to get to the Grayson Mansion. Several layers of scaffolding have been placed around the stone, to make it easy for those who might be working on it to move up and down. Presently, Lou Grayson seems to be sitting on the top layer o scaffolding, working at a comfortable pace with tools set all around her within easy reach. This is a far easier enterprise than the ladder she'd been using earlier. People from all over Arx have been invited to come and keep her company as she works, either to partake in refreshments and tell stories or to also work on art pieces of their own. There's a table of refreshments set up close by, but not so close that bits and pieces of stone are dropped onto the table as Lou chips away at the stone surface. It looks like, at the moment, the formation of a third face seems to be taking shape in the rock. This one, from what little bit can be seen so far, appears to be a feminine face.
(OOC)The scene set/room mood is now set to:
A tall block of stone is with the likeness of Prince Niklas Grayson and Prince Augustus Grayson as works in progress is what greets travelers as they pass through the Grayson Grounds to get to the Grayson Mansion. Several layers of scaffolding have been placed around the stone, to make it easy for those who might be working on it to move up and down. There's a table of refreshments set up close by, but not so close that bits and pieces of stone are dropped onto the table when anyone chips away at the stone surface. It looks like, at the moment, the formation of a third face seems to be taking shape in the rock. This one, from what little bit can be seen so far, appears to be a feminine face.
Titania moves onto the Grayson grounds, one arm hanging down at her side as the other rests on her sword hilt that hands off her hip. Her ocean blue eyes looking around, its been a very long time since she stepped foot on these grounds. Her eyes look to the stone statue blinking staring at Niklas face, her head tilting to the side.
It is curiosity that draws the Culler woman from the drudgery of the Lowers. Raja makes her way into the area, claims a drink, then finds something to lean against while observing the process of what it takes to make a statue. One brow arches as the bits of stone fall and she rubs her chin in a thoughtful expression.
The rata-tat-ting of a hammer and chisel are very distinct sounds from atop that scaffolding that both Titania and Raja can easily hear. Lou pauses in her work to check and see if anyone else has come to join her. The last few public sessions she's held have had many a people coming out, working on their own carvings or paintings, or even offering entertainment. Lord Talwyn Saik was at the last one, and was said to have played his instruments beautifully. She easily spots Titania and Raja from below and waves from up above. "Lo there!" she calls out. "Coming to hang out with me while I work?" she asks. "I figured I'd put up some scaffolding this time. While the ladder was ok, it wasn't the steadiest," she says with a bit of a chuckle.
Who the hell *knows* why Sen arrives, but she looks very melancholy when she does - at least, insofar as her moods tend to be readable. She's certainly no artist, and she's brought nothing with her to pretend that she is. Instead, she slides her hands into the pockets of her coat and tips her head back, frowning up at the statue.
Raja turns her gaze all the way up towards where Lou is working and she cants her head, "You know, I heard stories of this forming sculpture all the way down in the Lowers. Some people praise it. Some people are grumpy. But you know, no matter what you do, there will be someone who dissaproves of what it is you do." She lifts her drink to her lips. "But I say fuck 'em." She peels off whatever she is leaning against and moves closer to the scaffolding. "I am not a sculptor, but I won't mind helping. Maybe you can tell me about this statue yourself."
Titania is lost at the moment looking at the statue of Niklas her ocean blue eyes looking him over. "Cousin." she says softly to herself. She blinks when she hears Lous voice. Her eyes look around then nodding her head to Sen'azala and Raja, then finally looking up to Lou.
Lou doesn't notice Sen'azala arriving at first. She's busy working on moving herself in a position so she can look down at the people below more easily. She settles for sitting up right, with her legs dangling over the edge of the scaffolding. She raises a brow at Raja. "I didn't realize people were upset at the work in progress. It's a project near and dear to me. I'm commemorating all of the members of the Grayson family who I know were lost in fall of Bastion," she tells Raja. "Each had been... turned into horrific creatures by the Metallic Traitor or were discovered stuck and dying in the middle of the transformation process," her eyes flick lightly to Titania when she says this, noticing the former Kennex woman looking at her cousin Niklas. "I wanted something that would serve as a way for people, and myself, to remember them all as they were."
Sen'azala's lips pinch. If she has a comment, she doesn't give it. Her gaze shifts, ever so slightly, toward Lou, and there's a faint tip of her head. Then she finds somewhere nearby to settle, dropping lightly into a cross-legged sit on the ground.
Raja shakes her head, "You are doing no wrong. People just grumble for the sake of grumbling." She gives a hand wave of it all. She has the clear demeanor that she doesn't agree with the nay-saying minority. Reaching up to grab at one of the scaffolding edges, she hoists herself up and climbs until she makes it on the same level as Lou. "Hi!" She glances back down to the people below. "Nice view!" But with the words from Lou, Raja glances to her and gives a solemn nod. "Yes. That whole thing at Bastion was a nightmare. Anyways, I am here to help!"
Titania breaths in deeply her eyes flash up to Lou looking from Niklas face, "What do you mean?" she asks looking back to Niklas face, "What do you mean..." she watches the statue then look back up to Lou.."When I last saw him we were all sat at the Kay having a family dinner." her eyes dart back to the the image of Niklas.
Lou checks composure at hard. Lou fails.
Lou was about to say something to Raja, but there's a pause at Titania's words. She gives the woman a quiet, steady look, where in her brows draw together. It's the sort of which from someone who knows profound grief over the loss of someone, but doesn't quite know how to explain that loss to another. "Lady Titania, I suggest if you wish to know the deeper details, you speak to members of your family. That sort of news is better coming from them, where you can be surrounded by the comfort of family. But, for the moment, you should know that Prince Niklas was a hero who was rescued and given the opportunity to be released to the Queen of Endings peacefully." There's a gentleness to Lou's words as she speaks them. "If, after you speak to them, you want to know more, I can put you in touch of those folk who rescued him and saw him last." She falls into an awkward sort of silence there, uncertain of what more to do or say on that. Her eyes flit over to Sen'azala briefly, noting where her friend has taken a seat below the scaffolding.
Sen'azala is no help whatsoever, but it's clear she has some idea of what Lou is talking about. It doesn't help the general melancholy about her, though it doesn't really deepen it either. She looks toward Titania, possibly gauging any reaction.
Titania checks composure at hard. Titania marginally fails.
Silence falls over Raja. Even as a Culler, she is not so cold as to say shit at this moment. Her gaze even softens as she looks towards Titania. However, she remains silent and allows Lou to handle this.
Titania winces as she hears Lou's words, soft and all. How do you handle someone who has been missing for so long, that half the life she knew is gone. She takes a shaky breath in and then lets it out, "I.." her eyes look to Niklas, "A Hero." she says in a soft word that thought bringing a smile to her lips even if she is holding back whatever is going on the best she can. She swallows and licks her lips, "Thank you, your highness." she looks around a blush coming to her cheeks when she realizes others are looking her way.
"Just Lou is fine," those words are spoken as gently as the previous. Lou looks gives Sen'azala a curious look, finally taking the time to notice her melancholy. She frowns slightly but takes a moment to direct Raja to some actionable work. "See that sketch there?" she motions to one that she's drawn of her family, a sort of draft she's working on. "If you could maybe start working on the top of Prince Donovan's head, that'd be helpful. And you needn't worry about messing anything up because it's just the outline of his head I'm putting you to work on." Lou motions to the oval shape of his head, and only the oval. "If you could put that next to Princess Minka, kinda of like how I did it, that'd be a help," she assures Raja. She motions to the stone which has an outline of Minka's head already there. Lou had started filling in the details, as a pair of eyes looks back at Raja. "You just take a chisel and a hammer and tap it as little or as hard as you want until some of the rock falls away and keep going around until you make the oval. I find the process to be rather cathartic," she grins at Raja. "It's a good way to work out frustrations, anger, resentment, what have you, without hurting anyone." She looks back to where Sen'azala is and then tells Raja, "I'll be back." She then turns, finds a foothold, and somewhat deftly works her way down to the ground to take a seat next to her friend.
Sen'azala regards Titania for a long moment, her own expression unchanging, before looking down at the grass(?) directly in front of her. The shift in focus is likely why she startles a little when Lou sits down nearby, and the side-glance she gives is questioning.
Raja glances to Lou and then takes the sketch. In silence, she listens before nodding. "alright. I will do my best." Raja is used to working with metal, but stone is a slightly different medium. The chisel is liften and one tongue sticks out the corner of her mouth as she leans in and tap tap taps. She does try various angles of the chisel and different strengths of taps. Even though stone is not a medium she is used to, Raja purely enjoys crafting of all sorts!
Titania breaths deeply nodding her head, "Lou." she says to herself, she looks to Sen'asala as she feels she is being looked at, she nods her head. "I.. You are doing a beautiful job, I should go. Thank you, for letting me see him once again." she looks at the face of Niklas then turns to head back out the way she same.
Lou gets Green Griffon Explorer Backpack from Rugged Backpack with Quick Release Straps.
Lou puts Green Griffon Explorer Backpack in Rugged Backpack with Quick Release Straps.
Lou gives Sen a little shoulder bump when she settles down and whispers something to her. She glances back to Titania when the other woman speaks, giving her a light nod of the head. "Thank you, and thank you for coming. This project is a labor of love for me. Perhaps if you come another time, we can share some stories about your cousin," she suggests. "Most of the others lived in Bastion and I don't know of any in Arx who really knew them." She glances up at the work Raja is doing and offers encouragement. "You're doing a great job up there! You're actually the first person, other than myself, to chisel anything out of that stone."
Sen'azala shakes her head a little at whatever Lou whispered. "...Memories," she says, after a moment, not quite a whisper itself. She doesn't seem to consider that word accurate though, because her nose wrinkles more or less as soon as it leaves her mouth. She offers no replacements however.
Raja checks dexterity and smithing at normal. Raja is successful.
Raja takes the knowledge of her craft to this work! A little chip here. A little tap there. She even begins humming a tune to herself! (Just be grateful she isn't singing.) "Thanks!" She calls down to Lou. "I find myself the happiest when I am working with my hands. But, I am still rather wary of fucking it up!" She begins to work at the left side of the oval. Tink tink!
Lou lets out a small laugh at Raja's comment. "So I am!" she admits to the Culler woman. "So, am I. But I figure if I do fuck something up, I can find a different, creative way to make it work. Maybe add some melted metal or something to it to fill in the that one spot I chipped too deeply to accent that area. Worse comes to worse, I can consult Denica or Sebastian on ways to creatively mend the area. It's the creation of it that matters most to me, not getting it perfect." So says the woman that somehow got the details perfect the last session out. But, of course, even /Lou/ was surprised at how well Niklas and Augustus turned out. She gives Sen'azala a concerned look and whispers another question to her.
Sen'azala doesn't respond to whatever Lou whispered for a while, though she does eventually, low this time. She looks up at the unfinished statue, and then, a little louder, though still clearly toward Lou, "I don't build statues. You shouldn't let me keep you from yours. I just came to watch."
Raja spins on her heel to point at Lou, "I can do the melted metal bits!" She laughs! "I am a bit of a jeweler as well. When this gets closer to finished, I could help stuff gems or shiny bits in places that need it. If you like!" Her gaze turns to Sen and gives a wave to the woman. But, she does not intrude with whatever is going on there.
Lou shoulder bumps Sen'azala again when she declares she doesn't build statues. "Honestly, this is my first statue," she tells her friend. "And, I'm working on it real slow on purpose. Partly to share the experience with others, and partly so I can ruminate and determine how else I want it to look. It's sort of a living project taking shape. I'm not going to get all of the details right, because I'm just barely an artist. But, it at least lets me express /something/, /anything/ while channeling that energy somewhere." Pause. "And, doing art isn't for everyone. Watching is fine too," she assures Sen quietly. She glances back up at Raja and grins. "I'd love for some extra help," she tells Raja. "Former Guildmistress Joscelin Arterius was here at the last session and she praised the work I've done so far. It made me blush that she did so, compared to all of the masterful work she's completed."
Sen'azala is definitely studying the statue now, but she shakes her head again. "I don't build statues," she repeats, without explanation. Raja gets a nod at the wave.
Raja blinks at Lou. "REALLY?" She exclaims! "I have one of her more simple crafts here!" She pulls a simple gold bangle off her wrist to hold it up. "It's one of my most prized possessions! It was a gift, but /she/ made it." A smile is on her face. Raja can be surprisingly sentimental about some things. The bangle is slipped back onto her wrist.
Lou seems to take Sen'azala at her word, regarding whatever it is she can't quite expression. "If you ever want to talk, you know where you can usually find me," Lou tells her gently, even if she doesn't quite understand. She rises from Sen'azala's side so she can oblige her friend by going back up the scaffolding to work more on the statue. At the top, she gives Raja a warm grin at the bangle. "It is a beautiful piece." She settles herself before the area she was working on, right in front of Minka's unfinished eyes. She picks up her chisel and hammer once more and stares at the work. "The last time I saw her, Minka that is, she was a zombified plant person trying to kill me. Same for Augustus, Calain, Donovan, John, and Aibek. Aindre's parents were made into part of one of the gargantuan in the final battle at Bastion. So, I'm trying to capture the better sides of them, that were not that. I have to keep going back to paintings and drawings others have done in the house to get the details right."
Raja stops her hammering when Lou tells what happened to these people. Suddenly, the statue has a whole /new/ meaning to her. In reverent silence, she glances up to the faces that are already etched out. "That.. I.. I did not hear about that.." She says in breathless tones. "That is horrifying." She steps back as far as she can on the scaffolding to examine the statue more. "Damn."
Sen'azala again doesn't look at all surprised, but she does grimace a little. Now that Lou's returned to her work, the other woman seems once more content to sit and watch.
"Niklas found mid-transformation into one of the zombified plant people, in the crypts of Grayhold." Bastion's Keep. "So, understandably, I didn't want to give Titania those details. The Deathspeakers were putting the spirits to rest there who had been disturbed by the Traitor's forces and found him still alive. They did what they could for him to ease his passing." Lou's glances at the details she's made of Niklas, those perfect lines and curves, and that perfect, perfect peaceful smile. She takes in a breath and slowly lets it out before looking back to Minka. "I wasn't on that trip," she adds. "Just informed about the findings, but having seen the end result when I ran into my other cousins. . . I didn't need to see it." She starts to chisel some things into the stone, hammering more than a bit harder than she was when they had arrived. She's working on the nose and mouth of Minka and might have hit one of the edges a bit too hard, causing an imperfection. Lou doesn't seem to notice it as she works, but Raja's crafter brain might. This is, after all, her first piece of artwork.
Lou gets a large block of stone from a Grayson quarry, shaped in the outline of several bodies, with the likeness of Prince Niklas and Prince Augustus taking form.
Lou drops a large block of stone from a Grayson quarry, shaped in the outline of several bodies, with the likeness of Prince Niklas, Prince Augustus, Princess Minka, and Prince Donovan taking shape.
Lou checked dexterity + legerdemain at difficulty 15, rolling 15 higher.
The tiny chip off the nose causes Raja to double-take. She is not judgemental of other people's work, but she does know how important this may be to Lou. "So uh.." She taps her own nose, "How do you correct imperfections in stone?" She is clearly a bit unnerved at the idea of someone being turned into an evil plant.
Lou stops her work and blinks at the stone a moment at Raja's question, like she doesn't understand what Raja is asking. Then she sees it. The part of Minka's nose she was working on was broken in half and chipped away. Lou busts into a bellyful of hearty laughter, breaking up the somber, melancholy mood that she'd glomped onto from Sen'azala. "Oh. Oh my! Did I just do that?" she asks, as if she can't fathom it. "Well, I suppose Minka's going to have a bit of stone stuck into some metal going through her nose to keep it in place. Probably silver, or some other dim color metal?" she looks to Raja to see if the other woman might have some suggestions.
Raja moves closer to the nose and leans in to look at it. "You know.." She cants her head one way, then the next. "Could carve a piece to fit and secure it with mortar. Glue her nose together! It should dry to be close to the same color." She reaches out to touch the half-a-nose. "Could use metal too, but that could get complicated to get it to stick."
"Mortar would work too," Lou agrees, glancing it over once more. "I'll figure it out later when the time for finishing and polishing comes," she decides. She glances at the work Raja has done and then her own and declares. "I think this is enough for today. I'll came back to it with fresh eyes again in a few weeks and after I check the house artwork once more. Could be she had a crooked nose, ya know?" Lou grins at the latter.
Raja laughs! The chisel and hammer are set where they belong. "Well, thank you, Lou for having me here. I wish more people would have showed up. I also wish I had showed up at previous art sessions." She turns towards the princess, "And thank you for showing me how to hammer the chisel! My sister would be proud."
"The work will happen whether or not people come," Lou says with a bit of a shrug of her shoulder. "I consider it an opportunity to get to know others. Share their stories. Maybe tell some of my own. Perhaps net time I'll talk about my trip to Brightshore. That's certainly less melancholy than what happened to them," Lou tilts her head in the direction of the statue. "We had a big turn out last time. You are most welcome to come back to the other sessions. And, if you're into different types of artwork, you might want to go see the mural Princess Denica is painting in the ballroom of Whisper House. She's asking people to tell her stories of adventure so she can consider painting them into the ceiling."
Raja smiles faintly. "Do you think she will want to paint my battle with the giant serpent that lived in our sewers? Thing nearly did me in! I didn't enjoy it at the time, but now as years have passed, I enjoy sharing the story. Maybe I should poke her soon." She sighs and steps away, "I do have some comissions to go tend to. Thanks for having me."
"She might! She'll definitely want to hear it," Lou assures Raja. "I've got my kids to go look after." She's cleaning up her tools, putting them away, before she climbs down the scaffolding. "Thank you again for coming," she says when she hits the ground once more. She casts another look in Sen'azla's direction, checking on her.
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