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The Oathlands Collection, a Fashion of the Fealties

Talia Baseborn will be premiering a collection of heirloom luxury brocade gowns to capture the Oathlands. In luxury brocade and precious stone, in metal and stitch, she will be offering gowns to represent the hunting dogs of House Clement, the honey bees of House Laurent, the shepherds of House Blackram, the dragons of House Wyrmguard, the stags of House Greenmarch, the sea dragons of House Rivenshari, the huntsmen of House Keaton, and the red wall of House Telmar. Gowns will be on display all day at Elegant Impressions, and can be claimed by the representatives of their House the day after.

(OOC: for real this time! I have everything crafted. Be there or be square.)


Feb. 2, 2020, 7:54 p.m.

Hosted By

Talia Zara


Tesha Baelor Jules Kael Merek Mercedes Reigna Tescelina Edain Teagan Adalyn Bhandn Philippe Monique Sabella


Blackram Clement Greenmarch Keaton Laurent Rivenshari Telmar Valardin Wyrmguard


Arx - Ward of the Compact - Elegant Impressions - Showroom

Largesse Level


Comments and Log

Elena, a solemn knight attache, Alette, a discreet lady's maid, Isabel, a calm diplomatic aide arrive, following Zara.

Trays of wine and champagne have been set out, along with bite-sized appetizers and food from some chef somewhere in the city. The gowns themselves are all on their own mannequin, lined up in the center of the room with enough spaced left around each for a nobleman to walk completely around them. A surly mercenary watches over the gowns from the corner of the room, hired solely to protect the one-of-a-kind pieces. Talia finishes the tray that she is working on, straightening as Bhandn approaches with a blush. "No, thank you. Sorry. I was just finishing-- just finishing up," she tells him in a murmur, fumbling to undo the apron over her grey wool gown.

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

Tesha arrives alone and dressed in crimson as per her usual. Therea look around the shop and then there's a nod of her head to the hostess, "Mistress Talia." she states with a smile. Bhand gets a greeting as well, "Sir Bhandn. Very good to see you." she states. Then she spots Baelor over in the corner and scowling no less. She heads that way. When she is close she whispers something to him.

Baelor is already here. And has worked his way through the clothes. No touching though! Because why would he? He wouldn't wear any of these fact...he wouldn't wear any of this. A confused furrowing of his brow as he tries to make another circuit and discover where might the men's clothing be? He has been misled. Misinformed. Led astray. The scowl has been schooled away once he spots Reigna's arrival and he'll manuever to greet her. "Marquessa."

Jules enters into the showroom with a massive smile and his eyes shifting about to take in the entirety of the setting including the people. He waves here and there to whomever he happens to see no matter who it is. As he happens to pass one of the trays with champagne, he takes one of the glasses and gives a cheerful nod of his head to the server. He then begins to move up towards one of the mannequins to slowly gaze of the gown. He takes no orderly scan of it but here and there initially to get the general feel of them before beginning a more detailed look in a moment. He proceeds this way over each before returning to the first to more closely examine them now.

Deimos, an enigmatic barn-owl arrives, following Tescelina.

Speaking of well rested, Kael looks similarly content - as though he has finally, finally, been able to sleep the hundred years necessary to fill that void he was in debt with. So it is, well groomed to boot, that he is escorting his wife on her arm. As she buzzes with delight, he is offering her forth a soft smile in response. It is a gentle thing, but painfully sincere, even as he shifts his attention around the showroom as a whole. As he spies certain known individuals, his head inclining by way of greeting, but seeks to acquire a chair with his wife. Ah, and as Baelor intervenes to greet the lady on his arm? His brow upticks and he offers forth an easy, "Uncle."

Merek has taken the time to put on his silver-black attire, which is a longcoat that shifts to the waist, beltcape skirting to only one hip, while he finds a place to settle in, looking to the place in thought as well.

Impeccably turned out in her own Talia original, Zara inclines her head toward the craftswoman in a gesture of grave respect for her creative talents. She gathers a glass of wine from a tray, but it seems more a thing to occupy her hands, as she does not touch it as she moves to circulate among the mannequins set on display and inspect.

Stomp, stomp, stomp. She doesn't particularly try to be the clunking half-life of the party, but Mercedes Valardin just can't help being herself. Along with her imposing bootheels, the knight-inquisitor is dressed in her usual dark cloth and leather, with a positively warlike steel breastplate also strapped on and very visible between the lines of her crimson longcoat. All blood and steel, her pale, intense stare regards the interior of the clothier's shop with a wariness that's not entirely accustomed. Skin like warm alabaster is about the only part of her that might not feel woefully out of place amongst the fine silks and equally refined company.

Those two swords, one ruby and one diamantine, ride their sheaths at either hip, because who doesn't come prepared for murder at a fashion show? Rather than immediately insert herself like an over-eager ugly duckling, the former princess steps to one side and finds a conveniently shadowy rack to skulk behind, taking her measure of the room and bracing her warrior soul for one of its greatest challenges in recent memory. She's also scanning each person present, and seems to be looking for somebody.

Chances are, they'll know she's here before she gets her wits together. You can probably start a countdown on such. Ten...

"Uncle!" Reigna beams at Baelor, her eyes bright, her joy tangible. She all but squees, a rainbow of glee as opposed to the stoic men near her. "It is great to see you -- are you in the market for a gift for someone? Oooh, have you already made a special aquaintance?" Reigna, snuggles into Kael's side, "I am so excited to see what Tailor Talia has made for Keaton! I simply cannot wait!" This Reigna is the daylight to the moonlit creature she has been for the last year and a half, she is all joy, all energy and excitement. Seriously, no one let her near the sugar.

Tescelina is garbed in violets with black riding breeches and cuts, upon her entrance, a gallant vision. Her hand removes a tricornered hat while the other moves to let her ponytail flick aside behind her from its place in front of her shoulder, starlight white against the hue of dusk that she garbs herself within. It wouldn't quite be Oathlands fashion without a sword, however, and on her hip is slung an immaculate rapier with a duskstone encased pommel. It's lover dagger nearby, tucked into the care of leather sheathe. She takes measured steps forward, cyan gaze appraising of the room, its state half-lidded and almost dream like behind lashes.

Tesha gives a smile to Baelor as he answers her, then the woman watches him go to greet Reigna and Kael and there's a dip of her head in greeting to the Marquis and Marquessa. Then she's moving to find herself a seat somewhere that's quiet and where she can see things.

Arriving into the storefront with little fanfare and the bare minimum of a contingency of guards, Edain momentarily sports a look of utter exasperation. "What do you mean, they were dueling about robes and slippers? It truly cannot be a fashion crisis. Most assuredly not. We'll send those missives to Princess Zara /specifically/ to answer," he conspires with Harald Steve, his gaze naturally migrating over the interior of the shop with a pointed ... lost expression. "We're going to have to tell Duke Laurent to stop this madness at once. Just simply unBEElievable."

The highlord breaks away from his musings of the strange world of fashion to approach Talia. "Seamstress Talia, good evening!"

It is not often that Teagan turns out for a social engagement, but she has been -trying- more often these days and she has due cause to appear for this particular unveiling. And so she arrives with no retinue other than a guard -- who is left to remain outside so as not to crowd the place -- and Chessa who joins her to look over the displayed gowns, the two talking quietly as they take their time in studying each in turn.

A curt nod in response to Kael's greeting. "No." Reigna though. Gets words. Well, a word, a singular word to cease every question that flowed from her lips at him with their demands. A quick glance about the room to take in all of the gowns and /no/ doublets or jerkins or jackets for a man like him to wear. "Someone let me come to the conclusion that I would look good in these clothes. Perhaps as a jest."

Although Adalyn's own simple attire presently lends itself more to function than fashion, curiosity has brought the Clement here to marvel at the talented seamstress's latest line of garments. She slips in the door, her high-heeled boots clicking against the floor as she walks. A scan of the crowd brings her gaze to alight on the familiar faces of the Keatons, a hand lifting in a cheery wave to Reigna and Kael as she begins to wind her way through the crowd toward them.

"If that should change..." The offer goes unspoken, but Bhandn doesn't press it on Talia, instead inclining his head. He'll go back to casting his eyes arounds, pausing momentarily to offer a long-distance half-bow in the direction of the Marquis and Marquessa of Keaton, but no words, not wanting to interrupt. He insteads turns his gaze to the stomping arrival of Mercedes, giving the knight-inquisitor a study with his grey eyes, though a similar half-bow and silence, not wanting to draw attention otherwise.

"Quite the turnout," comes from his lips, though Bhandn glances towards Talia to make it clear he's giving the comment to her. And there Bhandn is blinking in surprise at Edain's approach to Talia, before going into a near right-angle with his legs for that bow, offering a murmured, "Your Grace."

"Your grace," Talia greets, flushing bright red. She curtsies, before giving a warmer, more familiar smile to Zara as she recognizes the woman accompanying the Highlord of Valardin. She clears her throat, before offering, "Welcome to Elegant Impressions. You did-- provide the brocade." She nods to Zara.

Laurene, a military adjutant arrives, delivering a message to Edain before departing.

Jules happens to spot Teagan as he's looking over the faithful hunting dogs gown. He gives her a wave and a smile but does not do more in case she's here for other reasons. His eyes shift over towards the gown again and he squats down, not content to look at the gown from standing while examining the hem. He rubs his chin slowly as he looks at the paw prints across it. His smile seems amused as he looks.

Otherwise capable of an impeccably cool facade, there's something about those words on Edain's lips that makes Zara's whole face just do this remarkable _twitch_. She turns toward him, and while her greeting is polite as it could be -- skirts sweeping, head bowing -- she is determined as she says, "I would be delighted to answer them, Your Grace." A faint chill frosts her words. There is little doubt she is eager to put an end to that little _fashion faux pas_. She is notably _not_ wearing socks with her incredibly well-tailored slippers. Don't be ridiculous. Who would do that. Glancing to Talia, her manner warms little, but her voice is comparative sunshine: "And you provided the inspiration, and the work, and everything that actually makes them what they are. They look lovely, once again."

"Assuredly," answers Kael to Baelor, inclining his head to the man. His gaze is following on to Tesha however, and when that greeting comes forth to them he inclines his head more deeply. There's a smile to go along with it. He spies Laurene from the corner of his eye and starts to track that military adjunct before finding her target. His brows move up in unison, delighted, and he delivers a deep bow toward the Valardin Highlord. It holds for a series of beats before he rises and murmurs something quietly to his wife. Ah, and Princess Zara as well. She too is the recipient of a bow, less held, but present nonetheless. With that, the Sanctum Sword is gesturing to a chair for Reigna to allow her to sit first.

Philippe arrives. He is dressed respectfully but inobtrusively in an earth toned tunic and slacks. He's likely in the market to shop for his wife, though he knows very little about fashion. Horse blankets, okay, but that's about all. Expecting no violence of any kind, the old count moves to stand in the audience, intermittently narrowing his eyes in concentration.

Edain checked composure at difficulty 20, rolling 10 lower.

Jerome, a bodyguard, 2 Valardin Knights arrive, following Isabeau.

"Oh look Kael! It's Prince Edain!" Reigna's voice indicates her excitement there, but she does not miss Adalyn's approach, sending a positively *beaming* smile her way. "Lady Adalyn! Hello! Hi! How are you dear? Oh, you must come sit with us! Hello!" Ooh, Kael is leading her to a chair and Reigna bounces up to press a kiss to his cheek. "You are so sweet! Have I mentioned that? So attentive. So excellent. You are the *best* husband in all the world." She waves delightedly to Prince Edain, "Your Grace! How wonderful to see you! Is this not a delightful day?" What was she doing? Oh, yes. Reigna sits, but even then, she is too energized to stay very still.

Tesha gives a dip of her head to Edain, "Your Grace." she greets him quietly. Then she's back to looking over things quietly. Sitting on the chair that she found. She had looked over the dresses and there was a bit of a smile to the.

One follows the lead of their Marquis, and Baelor's gaze flits to where the man is paying homage. And is just another lord biwing to Edain and his arrival. He cannot contain his eyeroll to Reigna's gushing affections, hidden by the turn before departing to leave the two by themselves. The press of those pushing into the small shop would make it seem only a salmon might leave and Baelor abandons the idea. So he'll need to find a place of solace. "Lady Tesha. Were you unaccompanied?"

The Prince of Sanctum struggles to maintain an expression of quiet stoicism in his dealings with Harald Steve, the corners of his mouth becoming ever strained in their effort to maintain an courteous smile as he bows his head toward Talia. "House Valardin is most honored to attend this event and see the product of your vision, Seamstress Talia. Perhaps after you've revealed your works, Princess Zara and I could use your help to put to rest a disturbing trend." A look of kindred long-suffering is tilted toward Zara at his side before it just becomes an utterly /horrified/ expression for all of several moments, fading into relief that leaves his frame relaxing subtly from its frowing tension.

"Marquessa and Marquis Keaton," he smiles with warm regard for Reigna and Kael, turning to angle a deep bow of his head in their direction. "It's so good to see you both! I don't know the first thing about fashion, but Princess Zara had a hand in this so I believe this event is going to be just the thing we all need to put... some latest trends behind us."

Laurene, a military adjutant arrives, delivering a message to Edain before departing.

Painbow, a militant pygmy goat arrives, delivering a message to Edain before departing.

Five. Mercedes is doing her best to look like she's actually interested in fashion, sighing as she plucks at the sleeve of a dress coat, staring hard at the fine stitching before sliding it back into its place. At least she's being careful. Perhaps a little too much so; as if each item were going to explode into silky fragments at her touch. While the countdown is still ticking, she's spotted her quarry, and slips around the edge of her rather ineffectual hiding place, Bhandn's greeting belatedly drawing a reflection of the same bow from the gruff inquisitor. She's moving again soon after, sparing a glance for a couple of the more impressive weapons on display; Tescelina's gets a raised brow.

One. Doing her best not to clump and stomp - which is a lot easier when she's not moving at her usual strident pace - she inserts her stocky, imposing figure somewhere within Zara's eyeline and gives her younger sister an upward flick of her chin in a greeting that's, honestly, far too casual. All chiselled jaw and cheekbones, and expression its usual passive, resting scowl, at least until she reminds herself who she's looking at and one of her very rare smiles emerges quite unbidden. It makes her ghoulish countenance... markedly more pleasant, and it's certainly hard for anyone to look fearsome when their left cheek dimples *just so*.

"Oh." Talia nods, blushing more as she glances to the mannequins and then the gathering crowd, biting her lower lip thoughtfully. As Edain turns away, she exhales what might be a "shit" under her breath, as if she might have forgotten something. She clears her throat, moving towards a raised platform that is used for dress fittings and clears her throat (very very quietly).

There's a tilt of her head in a nod when Teagan notices Jules and his greeting. She doesn't crowd the space before the manneqins for long and soon steps back to clear room for others who wish to get a good look. Chessa makes herself scarce so the nobility about can get a good look. Particularly those whose houses are included in the event. The Blackram woman makes her way over toward Edain, Zara, and the others attending the Valardins. "Wonderful seeing you back in the city, Your Grace," she says to him. "And good to see you, Your Higness," to Zara."

"Marquessa Reigna! And Marquis Kael," Adalyn calls in exuberant greeting as she finally gets through the crowd to greet the pair properly. "It's so good to see you. You're looking positively radiant today; I'm so pleased to see you both looking so well!" She flashes a delighted smile at the pair, an expression which slips only slightly as her gaze lands upon Baelor. The flicker of recognition in her eyes is paired with a more tempered look, but he appears to be heading off to greet others anyway, so she offers no greeting of her own just yet. Attention returns to the Keatons. "I know very little of fashion myself, but I'm quite eager to see what Seamstress Talia has created."

Tescelina moves quietly among the gathered nobility, hands folded behind her, the collection so carefully and admiringly appraised. Its certain she is, despite being so subdued, quite a fan of fashion by her interest which is left naked on this rare circumstance. Though it is broken, momentarily, when she sees a familiar Zara in the distance. The knightess moving a hand to her heart, bending in a bow, though not approaching to interrupt. The slightest twitch of a smile on her passive, doll like countenance.

This places Tescelina in proximity to Mercedes. The fellow knight is studied at a distance and she tilts her head to the side, the wave of her fluffy ribbon-tied hair cascading with a gentle motion in curiosity. She steps forward, no escape now for the Inquisitor. "Hello."

Tesha gives a look up to Baelor and there's a moment she just doesn't register what he asks, "Oh. No, I don't have escorts." she shakes her head to that with a soft chuckle. "Would you like to have a seat, my Lord?" she offers with a soft smile.

Jerome, a bodyguard, 2 Valardin Knights leave, following Isabeau.

"Thus the bow," murmurs Kael to his wife, a thread of amusement audible in his tone. He's more stoic than not - especially compared to Reigna - but there is absolutely something gentled in his responses to her. When she dotes though, he snorts softly, and shakes his head. Yet she also happens to be the recipient of a kiss upon her cheek. It is fleeting, brief, but oh so heartfelt. "Your Grace," answers Kael, dipping again for good measured. "So no robes for your court?" He manages to keep a straight face, he does, until a heartbeat or three and then he cracks a mild grin. His eyes flick to Zara and he inclines his head to her once more before he hears his name spoken. "Lady Clement," he greets her, with a smile. "I assure you that it feels good as well." With that comment, he is finally claiming a seat next to the Marquessa Keaton. "I also assure you that I know little of fashion. My wife typically dresses me and assures me that, yes, silk is necessary." Kael? Absolutely serious and without an ounce of shame.

Monique arrives at Elegant Impressions, an eager expression on her face and her titian hair pinned up in a sweep of shining curls. Her garb is suitably tight, suitably clingy, all gold and star iron filigree in the corset, seasilk and dawnstone in the spill of the skirts. She smiles in recognition, curtseys where appropriate, verdant eyes seeking someone.

Returning Kael's greeting with a grave nod that widens to include Reigna, Zara's frosty manner thaws, bit by bit, in the company of so many of the Oathlands. (The energy pouring from the Keaton contingent possibly helps. Contact high.) It may also help that Edain suggests a future where Duke Cristoph's terrors might be put to rest. "I'll speak with you later," she promises Edain and Talia both in a murmured aside. One can only fight fashion with fashion, after all.

Then it's other familiar faces, hellos here, there -- and Teagan! That one deserves a pause as Zara turns her attention to her with an inclination of her head. "And you, Marquessa." She weights the title, new as it is, with due respect. But. Familiar faces -- that is, extremely familiar, catching parts of her own and casting it in far more stern lines: Zara turns to Mercedes with just a hint of a mirroring smile lighting through her eyes. "Ah, there you are," she says, like she's been _looking_ for her, as she moves to join her. And Tescelina now, too, greeted with a murmur: "Lady Tescelina."

"Good." Baelor responds to Tesha and promptly plops himself into the seat beside her, crossing his arms over a silk tabard that must be headed towards retirement considering it's threadbare nature. Perhaps he'll be able to leave once the displays begin in earnest.

"I swear if I let him pick he'd be in linen and wool year round. I have had to tell him firmly, that our people expect a certain... swagger in their nobility. I still cannot get him to accept a coronet yet. But I will work on him." Reigna's eyes gleam with mirth as she beams at Adalyn. She looks over to Baelor, checking on her Uncle's position before slipping her hand from Kael's arm to his hand, clasping his big hand in her much smaller one. She spies Zara's nod and sends the Princess one of her beaming smiles. "Oh look, it is cousin Mercedes, and Cousin Tescelina. Have you met my cousin Tescelina, Kael?"

"Thank you all for coming. With the valued support of House Valardin, I present to you, the Oathlands collection of the Fashion of the Fealties. Captured in luxury brocade, with stones at the breast to represent the Oathlands as the beating heart of our Compact, each House that put their names forward have been captured to the best of my ability. Hardworking Laurent, whose Duke works tirelessly for their liege. Steadfast Telmar, whose wall holds and never falls. Faithful Clement, who has received a just reward for their never failing loyalty. Fearsome Blackram, who will protect with a blade. Untamed Greenmarch, who bring a touch of needed wilds. The dragons of Wyrmguard, so closely connected with the dragons of Valardin. Noble Keaton, and the necessary hunt they pursue for the Compact. And of course the Rivenshari, who move coin on the rivers of the Oathlands." Talia stops at that, flushing, having gestured to each gown in turn as she speaks. Awkwardly, she offers: "Thank you, for letting me do this. And for your patience. I present, the Oathlands."

Jules allows his attention to drift towards Monique as he starts to move towards honey bees gown. He gives a smile and wave to Monique and he decides to shift over to where she's at and says, "Lady Monique, so good to see you tonight!" His tone excited, "It's been some time since I saw you last, are you doing well?" A tone of concern on his voice and a weak smile here.

Edain turns his gaze toward Talia with expectant curiosity when he hears that subtle clearing of his throat, maneuvering himself to stand comfortably to the side to watch her opening speech, bringing his hands together in light applause.

As Talia speaks, Zara quiets to listen; after she is done, when she joins Edain's applause, her own a touch more firm. It's amazing how easy she makes it look to clap with a wine glass in hand. It's tricky, you know! "Lovely work, Talia. Such a clear vision in each."

Zara is overheard praising Talia: A remarkable talent!

Tescelina is overheard praising Talia: A true artist, capturing the beauty of the Oathlands in every stitch.

Adalyn's eyes flicker between Kael and Reigna, amusement shining brightly within them. "It's an important task you've taken on, Marquessa Reigna, but it's an important one no doubt. And at least we can be assured that the Marquis won't be found pairing socks and slippers?" She manages to stifle her laughter, though her smile hints at good humor and merriment. Her gaze flits over the crowd in search of familiar faces, but then Talia is moving forth to begin her presentation. The Clement beams with pride as each Oathlander name is mentioned and their merits complimented, applauding as the speech comes to a close. "Exquisite designs, Seamstress Talia!"

There's something of a mild pleasure present in Teagan's features in hearing her new title from Zara, but then... doesn't everyone delight in those early days of a new title or name? She turns then to face Talia and listen to the announcement. As each gown is so described, she looks them over once again. There is a thoughtful expression that lingers on the woman's features, but she does not say anything and instead provides applause once again with the rest.

Teagan is overheard praising Talia.

Adalyn is overheard praising Talia: A woman of great talent!

Reigna turns her mutable attention to the woman of the hour and when the gowns are revealed, Reigna makes a sound of delight, "Oh look!" She bounces in her seat a little and then calls over to Teagan, "Marquessa Blackram, yours is going to look ravishing on you! Oh, look!"

"Not linen and wool, rather linen and then wool," corrects Kael with ease to that ridiculously true statement. When her hand is clasping his, Kael turns said hand so that he can squeeze Reigna's hand in turn. Now, when said cousins are pointed out he looks on to spy those that are mentioned. Those dark brows of his are furrowing. "The one," he says, regarding Tescelina, before continuing on with an easy, "but not the other." Mind you these words are spoken in an exceptionally quiet manner and his focus is turning toward Talia when she speaks. He straightens, giving the host her attention and due. Maybe a slight smile breaks with his wife's excitement.

Talia, beet red, steps down off the raised platform at that. She steps to the side, to watch the nobility mingle.

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

Jules claps as well with Talia's introduction and his eyes scan back over towards the gowns. He's otherwise silent and allowing the nobles more the opportunity to look over their own family's gowns.

The Knight of Sunflowers comes damn close to making Mercedes jump, fixated as she is on her charming sister. Almost. Gray-green eyes widen a touch, meeting the haunting visage of Tescelina Wyrmguard with a sudden dimming of the smile. Not that she's displayed, it's just... smiles. They're hard. "My Lady," she intones with a bow, very proper, with a hand upon her abdomen. "A fine blade." A fine everything, but the Ghoulslayer likes swords. Before they can launch into a discussion on the finger points of artful disembowelment, there's Zara, and Mercedes holds up a hand, finger raised, in a silent 'excuse me', then simply turns and steps *into* her approaching sibling.

Behold, not-so-humble gathering, and know that there's one person perhaps in all of Arvum who receives this treatment from the formidable inquisitor. Both arms raise and she *yanks* Zara into an embrace that will lift her clean off the ground if she doesn't squirm out or draw her dagger first. She probably won't do that. "Here I am," she confirms, ending the bear hug by plopping the taller woman down and re-establishing a second, rarefied smile. "How strange I should be shopping for pretty dresses, and run into you."

Smiling as she is, that honestly doesn't sound like a joke, it's bone-dry and delivered from pale lips that draw readily back to a thin line as she quiets for the actual... reason anyone's here. She doesn't shuffle her feet, and she looks around at the end to see if anyone else is applauding before she... doesn't. So she doesn't react much. Everyone else will cover for her, right?

Clearing her throat awkwardly, Mercedes directs herself back to the first person to address her. "Lady Tescelina Wyrmguard? I thought you seemed familiar. Well met. Dame Mercedes Valardin."

Philippe prepares to review what the Oathlands are, or at least what his wife will insist the Oathlands are. He has sympathetic pains in his coinpurse. Nonetheless, he waits attentively to look over each of the gowns, following in whatever line or queue will let him see each one.

Tesha is seated next to Baelor and conversing with the man quietly. She gives a bit of a smile when she sees the gowns in all their glory, "There was a lovely job done on each of them." the woman states.

Philippe is overheard praising Talia: A brilliant creative mind, talented with both eye and needle.

Monique smiles aside to Jules, dipping her crimson-bright head to the man. "Doing very well, Master Fabron, and yourself? How is business for you these days?" the Minx asks, though her attention is undeniably divided between him and Talia, applause for the talented designer.

"I think they'll all look wonderful," Teagan responds to Reigna, smiling at the compliment. It's a small sort of smile and just shy of being paired with a flush by the looks of things. She dips her head to the woman. "It sounds she'll need to do a series for the men next," she adds, casting a look toward Kael.

Sabella has been here the whole time, really, chattering quietly with one of her ladies in waiting and pausing of course when the gowns are presented, squealing just a bit and then having to hold herself back from rushing over to examine each one, "Oh, Mistress Talia, I swear Jayus must speak directly to you for such imagination and creative spark goes into everything you do that I should be sorely jealous if I had any talent with a needle, which it turns out I do not, but oh, how looking at your creations makes me wish that I did! It's like a painting you can wear! Or a sculpture! Or a painted sculpture!"

Tescelina momentarily studies Reigna and her head tilts but for a moment, animate in her brows, they crease and a hand upon her heart tenses at the material. "Oh I - well, yes. We've met several times. Do you not - " But she stops herself and clears her throat. "I am quiet, I suppose." And then hurt becomes guilt. She returns a bow of her head to Kael before attention shifts to Zara with that faint smile and then Mercedes who steps away to - oh my gods, she's /hugging/ the princess. Her eyes widen a bit. Before its explained. Introductions at last being made.

"Yes. Ah - you have," a pause, "Heard of me? Dame Mercedes, it is a pleasure to meet you," she lilts in an undiluted Oathlands accent. Her hand is offered, palm up, when she gives a more proper curtsy to the fellow lady knight. "Thank you," she gestures to her rapier at the indication and looks toward the woman's hips - for her instruments. "We must dance sometime, you and I. Do you like to dance?"

Edain is overheard praising Talia.

Reigna is overheard praising Talia.

There is a brief exchange between Reigna and Kael, but it is actually Vern, dressed in Keaton Green, that comes and taps Kael on the shoulder. He's looking awkward amongst so many, but he still manages. Kael frowns, offers forth a few brief words to Reigna and upon discussion it seems that the Marquis and Marquessa both are going to slip out. Not without deep bows of the head - apologetic in nature - to Talia.

Jules nods to Monique and seems to allow his smile to spread more broadly, "So good to hear." He does a little bounce on the balls of his feet and says, "Business has been quite busy. Always people to help and then some." His tone having just a hint of excitement, "It's amazing that one could focus on one specific thing and always have a demand for what you do." He gives a shrug. He allows his eyes to continue to glance over the gowns and then adds to her, "I assume your library ever expands?"

Bhandn will join in the brief applause that His Grace of Valardin begins, but Bhandn's attention is fixed completely on the now blushing hostess, and it's Talia's need that the Knight of Solace will address. He procures a drink, bringing it with him to offer to Talia without comment at first. There is a faint up tilt to his mouth as he nods to her and proffers the beverage. "For the nerves," he says, trying to get his deep voice to be assuring. "Treat yourself, you've done very well I'd say, by all the interest." There's a momentary gesture at all the mingling. "Can one expect a similar exhibition of coats and pants in the future?"

When she was younger, and she first outgrew Mercedes, Zara probably thought that was the end of this. The end of INDIGNITY. The end of the GRAVITY-DEFYING-HUGS. But no. It wasn't. It never is. An older sister is an older sister forever, and Zara makes the most improbable squeaky noise of dismay as all of her carefully constructed composure is disordered in the squeeze. Her feet (SLIPPERED. NO SOCKS.) scrabble at the ground before finding it again on release. She catches Mercedes arms with her hands -- or hand, really; one is occupied with not making a mess of her wine all over everyone -- and squeezes her arm. S q u e e z e.

There might be a threat in the way Zara's thumb curves against the delicate flesh of Mercedes's inner arm, but her expression has been overtaken by a smile. It's not a very believable threat. "Gods be good, I should've poured my wine all over you," she says, brushing her gown straight with the pass of a hand. Not a stitch of it is strained, of course. It's too well-tailored for that. "If you are seriously shopping for a dress, I'd be glad to help you find one. And one tailored for all manner of adventure, I'm sure." She looks from Mercedes to Tescelina with a thoughtful noise. "Oh, dear. This is the part of the conversation about swords, isn't it."

3 Keaton Huntsmen, Sir Pupsalot, a polite, tri-color corgi, Oaken, an Oakhaven bloodhound, 1 Healer Guardian, Gigi, an apprentice physician with attitude problems leave, following Reigna.

Monique is overheard praising Talia.

"Always," Monique answers Jules with a broad grin. "Though I could certainly use a few new authors writing for the stacks! If you happen to find any, send them my way?" She ducks her head once more. "I'm going to see what kind of a drink I can find, I'll track you down later? Good to see you again!"

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

"Thank you," Talia says quietly, smiling at Bhandn as she accepts the glass. She takes a quick sip, considering the question. "I think possibly. Maybe a men's collection after I finish the heirloom gowns. I still have the Lyceum, the Islands, the Northlands and the Crownlands to capture," she admits, guiltily.

Tesha gives a smile to Talia, "You've done a wonderful job, Mistress Talia." she tells her. "Did you want to display these for a few more days so that everyone might see these?" she asks her.

And once again, Teagan is left without a conversation partner. Not uncommon for the introvert that she is! However, the woman does not seem to mind. She once again passes to consider the various gowns now that crowds have thinned a bit, lingering a bit longer before moving to the next.

"Please," Mercedes counters Zara smoothly, helping her brush out her gown by pulling at a crumpled seam. Carefully, again. She's been around dresses, she just doesn't understand or embrace them - bar in incidents like these. "I've been covered in worse, and you are quite aware of it." Ghoulish eyes widen a touch, and this time it's her usual failed ghost of a smile that twitches at her lips. Two real ones per day is really quite enough. She adds, with a soft husk to her tone, "Missed you. Let you know about the dress."

That's probably a no. But they can't do this all day, and her attention shifts back to the Knight of Sunflowers.

Despite her dramatic shift in affiliation - and status - there's no real dimming of the Oathlands in Mercedes, her accent still intact and thus not really suiting her lack of... traditional graces, a passing knowledge of etiquette and imbued knightly behaviors notwithstanding. At least Tescelina's particularly strange and floaty behavior is regarded on this occasion by someone who's quite fine with awkward; it's easier than having a mirror held up to display quite prominently what you're not, and could never be.

"Perish the thought, dear sister. We are discussing dancing. I am a keen... dancer, and would be honored to test the... waltzing skills I've heard whispers about. From people who dance. Are you planning to take the field in battle, Lady Tescelina, should it come to that?" Oh, it's worse than swords. It's also a conversation about war. And dancing.

Adalyn strolls closer to the mannequins to admire Talia's handiwork up close. She sidesteps the enthusiasm greeting of sisters, a wistful smile upon her lips as she does so, although an overheard snippet of conversation captures her attention. Her gaze slides toward Zara, curiosity evident. "Conversation about swords? Oh, but that does sound riveting." There's no hint of sarcasm in the woman's tone, only eager interest.

"I missed your challenge, Lady Adalyn." Baelor doesn't actually say hello when he trods onto Adalyn's conversation. "It is good to see you standing tall and upright." Sarcasm hangs lightly upon the statement, with a smirk widening upon his face.

"Which one do you like the best?" Sabella asks Teagan as they happen near each other while examining the gowns, "I keep thinking I've settled on one and then I see the next and--well, now I feel like I just need a whole bed wardrobe quite honestly!" She looks over to Princess Zara, Mercedes, and Tescelina with a bright smile, "It's so nice to see you back in the city! I honestly adore being nearby when family reunions happen, especially when they involve dress shopping!"

When Tesha approaches, Talia's attention turns to the lady. She smiles, shaking her head. "I've had them out for display for two days now. I am sure anyone interested has seen them," she answers. "As soon as their true owners are ready to take them, they can. Would you like Telmar's, Lady Tesha?" With that she moves to the mannequin to start carefully taking the couture that has been sewn to fit onto it off.

mannequins covered in dark navy velvet is now unlocked.

Talia gets The Duchess of the Steadfast Red Wall, a luxury brocade gown from mannequins covered in dark navy velvet.

Jules has found himself momentarily alone and looks over to Teagan and starts towards her and starts to say something but then spots Sabella's converation with her and then turns his attention back towards the gowns to look over the bee gown again.

mannequins covered in dark navy velvet is now locked.

"Lady Adalyn did a wondeful job in her duel." Tesha points out to Baelor. Then she looks to Talia and there's a smile to her, "I wasn't going to rush things." she admits. "But, I am sure that the Duchess will be thrilled to receive this." she states with a smile. "And thank you again for all of the work that you've put into these." she states with a dip of her head.

"I will look forward to it, when time permits," Sir Bhandn murmurs to Talia, not projecting his voice to carry too much. "Particularly if you should happen to do an assortment of the many Orders in the city. The Templars, we of the Silver Order, the One Hundred... it's just a thought, an idea that came to mind when I heard of your display tonight. I admit, it's a little selfish to consider, but I do wonder what a weaver of your ability would create. If nothing else, it would be a fine display in honor of Jayus, wouldn't you say?"

Recognition dawns on Adalyn's features as she hears Baelor's voice at her side, the young woman slowly turning to face him. There's a flicker of something - embarrassment, guilt, dread? - before she manages to school her features into a more pleasant expression. "Lord Baelor. Nothing a good night's sleep couldn't fix. As for the duel, I'm sure there will be others. Are you settling in well?" Her gaze flits toward Tesha, a smile cast toward the woman. "Thank you, Lady Tesha. It's good to see you!"

"Of course," Talia murmurs, nodding respectfully to Tesha before she offers out the dress. Once divested, she turns to Bhandn with a tilt of her head and a quick, bright smile that tips her lips. "Just a thought, but a good one. If I am capturing the fashion of the Compact, the knightly Orders would be a good collection of itself. Perhaps coats and pants, to go under armor."

mannequins covered in dark navy velvet is now unlocked.

Tescelina's cheeks hum a soft hue when Zara outs them for sword-craft. Though she masks her lips with her fingers, at Mercedes' rebuttal. "Quite." If there is amusement, it shines faintly. Much akin to the moon, the knightess is radiant if distant. "Whispers," this seems to draw her focus back to the Inquisitor knight with some uncertainty. "Oh." Fortunately the topic of warfare is brought and her voice becomes gentle. "I am a knight of the Oathlands. If peace need be fought for and innocence saved, then I will fight where I am needed," her sincerity befits the countenance of that dusk-hued chevalier. "As well," she adds, "You would look lovely in a dress. But feel no pressure to do so, we are our most beautiful when we are confident in our attire."

Talia gets The Marquessa of Untamed Stags, a luxury brocade gown from mannequins covered in dark navy velvet.

mannequins covered in dark navy velvet is now locked.

mannequins covered in dark navy velvet is now unlocked.

Talia gets The Marquessa of Fearsome Shepherds, a luxury brocade gown from mannequins covered in dark navy velvet.

mannequins covered in dark navy velvet is now locked.

Glancing over at Adalyn as she approaches, Zara greets her warmly, although it hardly seems to stir her reserve: "Lady Adalyn, I'm somehow unsurprised that would draw your attention." She sounds approving. It's worth noting because she's otherwise so terribly hard to read. The warmth of her voice and the friendly welcome of her eyes must work double time to compensate. "Have you met my sister, Mercedes? I believe that you and Lady Tescelina are familiar, correct? We're speaking of swords, or perhaps sparring, or perhaps simply dresses and dances, and it's not actually a metaphor at all."

Talia works on undoing the ram skull dress from the mannequin it resides on carefully, folding the gown in on itself to protect the bone as she speaks with Bhandn. Only after, does she give the gown to the mercenary who walks it four feet over to Teagan, protecting it the entire way.

Sabella gives Jules a smile as he comes near, but any other greeting is stalled by Elizabetta leaning in to whisper something, "Oh! Was that right now? Apologies," she says to, well everyone, "I've forgotten a meeting! Mistress Talia, as wonderfully exquisite as always!" and then she's turning to rush from the room.

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

mannequins covered in dark navy velvet is now unlocked.

Talia gets The Marquessa of Noble Huntsmen, a luxury brocade gown from mannequins covered in dark navy velvet.

mannequins covered in dark navy velvet is now locked.

mannequins covered in dark navy velvet is now unlocked.

Talia gets The Duchess of Hardworking Honey Bees, a luxury brocade gown from mannequins covered in dark navy velvet.

mannequins covered in dark navy velvet is now locked.

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

Tesha takes the gown carefully and then makes sure it is safe for transport, "Thank you again, Mistress." she tells her. Then there's a look to Baelor again and she smiles when he's talking to people. She steps over to the side, a nod of greeting given to Mercedes, Zara and Tescelina as she does. She didn't want to be rude.

mannequins covered in dark navy velvet is now unlocked.

Talia gets The Countess of Nimble Sea Dragons, a luxury brocade gown from mannequins covered in dark navy velvet.

mannequins covered in dark navy velvet is now locked.

"Selfishly," Teagan says to Sabella once she looks away from the gowns, "I like Blackram's the best. However... after that, likely the Keaton gown. The greens are quite striking, don't you think?" And a moment later she finds herself being presented with the gown and summons Chessa to get the guard that had joined them to come and assist with seeing it back to the estate. "Thank you," she tells the seamstress. "Truly. It's wonderful work."

"I would very much like to hear your thoughts on such a display," Bhandn says to Talia, at mention of under-armor clothes, standing there watching as she continues her business. "Is it too presumptuous to write to you on the matter? I did have a thought on it that I hope is not entirely without merit, but I would not want to intrude on your work, or what inspires you."

"Or a prairie oyster. Sometime soon, I'll wake you and show you how to make one. Ensure you have red pepper sauce, fish sauce and brandy on hand. Oh. And an egg." But Adalyn has caught the attention of another group and he'll turn to looko at them as well. "Princess Zara." Baelor intrudes in the small knot of conversation about swords and gowns. "I'm Lord Baelor Keaton. I didn't typically find myself in Arx of late."

"No, no. Of course it wouldn't be too presumptuous. I am not above getting inspiration from whoever might present it," Talia offers to Bhandn in a murmur, smiling in a shy, awkward moment. "Art is a collective, after all." She nods to Teagan, straightening just to curtsy, before she moves to work on getting another gown off a mannequin.

mannequins covered in dark navy velvet is now unlocked.

Talia gets The Marquessa of Dragons in Flight, a luxury brocade gown from mannequins covered in dark navy velvet.

mannequins covered in dark navy velvet is now locked.

mannequins covered in dark navy velvet is now unlocked.

Talia gets The Baroness of Faithful Hunting Dogs, a luxury brocade gown from mannequins covered in dark navy velvet.

This last gown, too, gets carefully folded and given to the mercenary, just to escort to Lady Adalyn. Then Talia gestures to Bhandn, murmuring quietly, "Please, do write." Before she moves to duck away from guests who may or may not still stay and mingle.

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