Skip to main content.

Festival of Death - Finale Ball

After a season of festivals it is time for the grand finale, a ball in the Memorial Park Temple. A night of dance, music, food, drink and games. The ball is open for all who call the city of Arx their home. Wear your finest, your worst or what you hope to be buried in. There may be spiders. (There will be spiders.)


July 30, 2020, 6 p.m.

Hosted By



Evaristo Nina Raymesin Cassandra Rebecca Lethe Sanya Tanith Zoey Korka Symonesse Neilda Thea Kritr Aindre Rook Cocine Sorrel Insaya Olivian Reve Azova Piccola Gianna




Outside Arx - Eastern Approach - Path Outside the Walls - Memorial Park of Arx - Temple

Largesse Level


Comments and Log

Axelle, a personal valet, Bonehilda, the prettiest-colored spider, 1 Iron Guardsmen arrive, following Felicia.

(OOC)The scene set/room mood is now set to: The temple is bedecked in colors and symbolism of the Queen of Endings and Mother of Beginnings. Skulls, bats, spiders and wheels are everywhere, often in crimson colors and black details. Tables with foods and drinks are there for guests to grab on their own, but there's also Harlequins moving about offering drinks and snacks. Bards play from a stage, songs popular and related to Death, or just amusing ditties - keeping it at a volume so that talking is possible. The atmosphere is not heavy or brooding, but more joyous and celebratory.

Evaristo is milling about looking like he's doing things - he's pointing at a Harlequin to go somewhere, and then whirls around to go see how things are going at the entrance, where guests are starting to filter in. As First Harlequin, he won't be performing - probably - but he's helping!

The bard Nina has not yet been to this temple, but she finds balls so delightful. Given her involvement thusfar with the Festival, she was quite excited to attend, and marvel at the food and decorations and take in the atmosphere. As is her way, she has dressed in a custom gown, an elaborate one, in tones of surprising bright green and yellow, but bedecked with red gems on the net of skirts and on the veil that she wears over her red hair. She looks at the decorations as she walks around, doing a big-skirted spin when she reels about to take it all in.

Raymesin, meanwhile, is busy putting up the last bit of bunting. Given the sheer height of the man, such things happen a lot - he doesn't need a ladder where mere mortals surely would. Decked out in what has to be his best - Oakhide over a black silk tunic with spiders woven into it - he's actually smiling as he does it.

1 Templar Knight guards, Sir Daniel the Beardless, a somewhat hapless Templar arrive, following Hamish.

Kiko, a Kite of the Cloudspine, Hickory, the Deerhound, Russel, a Blackram Retainer, 1 House Lyonesse Adept Guards arrive, following Cahal.

No special gown. No really dressing up. In her robes and tabard, the Sword of the Faith arrives to the event and Cassandra has her guards move to the side. Hands folded in front of her, she moves along with the crowd, trying not to be too obvious, looking for a place to be unobtrusive to the others.

Hamish takes a Harlequin's bag of collectables from the mysterious backpack of DEATH.

Lady Rebecca is dressed in her end of summer finery, she is wearing a lightweight evening dress of pale silks in shades of Nilanza blue that compliments the rich tawny red of her hair. It may not be the best color to wear to this occasion but its the only color she owns and it causes her to stand out like a sore thumb against all the black and red. Her hair is left loose in large puffs around her shoulders, not quite waves... and not quite curls, the lack of early autumn humidity in the air makes for something fluffy and untamed. Her skin is fair with the ruddy touch of sun giving it some color along her cheeks and the tops of her shoulders.

Hamish drops a Harlequin's bag of collectables.

Lethe arrives with an eager smile. She wears an outfit of black and red and pauses to take in the decor.

Nina gets a silver and crimson coin stamped with Death's sigil from a Harlequin's bag of collectables.

Zoey gets a silver and crimson coin stamped with Death's sigil from a Harlequin's bag of collectables.

Korka gets a silver and crimson coin stamped with Death's sigil from a Harlequin's bag of collectables.

Rook gets a silver and crimson coin stamped with Death's sigil from a Harlequin's bag of collectables.

Lena takes a silver and crimson coin stamped with Death's sigil from a Harlequin's bag of collectables.

Cassandra gets a silver and crimson coin stamped with Death's sigil from a Harlequin's bag of collectables.

Raymesin gets a silver and crimson coin stamped with Death's sigil from a Harlequin's bag of collectables.

Lethe takes a silver and crimson coin stamped with Death's sigil from a Harlequin's bag of collectables.

Entering the aptly decorated temple, Sanya seems taken with the adornments and colors of the main room. "Wow." She says with a grin, lifting a hand to greet Evaristo, though she doesn't move to disturb him just yet.

Tanith is at her husband's side, holding tools and items up at Raymesin's request; while he doesn't need ladders as far as mere mortals are concerned, she's still happy to spare him back pain from stooping to pick things up. She grins to see him smile, eyes flicking about the room as people start to file in, muttering at the Queen's Blade now and then.

Sanya gets a silver and crimson coin stamped with Death's sigil from a Harlequin's bag of collectables.

Rebecca takes a silver and crimson coin stamped with Death's sigil from a Harlequin's bag of collectables.

Tanith gets a silver and crimson coin stamped with Death's sigil from a Harlequin's bag of collectables.

Cocine takes a silver and crimson coin stamped with Death's sigil from a Harlequin's bag of collectables.

Aindre gets a silver and crimson coin stamped with Death's sigil from a Harlequin's bag of collectables.

Cocine puts a silver and crimson coin stamped with Death's sigil in simple cloth bag.

Zoey arrives at the party clad in shimmering black brocade. At first glance the long gloves, heavy gown, and veil obscuring her eyes would seem much more appropriate at a funeral than at such a festive gathering, but when she turns and lifts the veil there is an entirely different side of this to be seen: a flirty slit down the front of the gown, knee-high boots with heels at a functional height for dancing, and a grinning skull of glass beads that had previously hidden beneath the lace. Her smile is bright and cheerful as she goes to mingle among the other guests.

"Hello hello, welcome, isn't this AMAZING, it'll be SO much fun," Evaristo says, greeting people left and right, winks and smiles and cheerfulness, eyes glittering with ever-present mischief and excitement. He's wearing the outfit he often wears - but it's always something with Death with him, so it fits. "Grab a drink, some food, oh don't forget your coin trinket, they come from the Deathspeakers!"

Nina take a coin, and slides it down the front bodice of her weird spooky brocade gown. Then she goes over to get herself a drink. She smiles when she sees Zoey, as she did get a preview of that lovely fabric. "Oh! It looks so wonderful!"

1 Saik Guard arrives, following Neilda.

Lethe has joined the a temporary yellow bench.

Korka has been here for a bit, leaning against one of the walls to watch people come and go, a look of mild judgment at anyone who takes a bit of a turn to show off. She glances at the spider that's climbing up her skirt and discreetly shakes a knee until it falls off, shaking her head, "You're the worst, Kevin."

Finn the large Northern hunting dog with icy blue eyes, Rocco, the rascally assistant arrive, following Thea.

Lady Rebecca makes her way around the room with perfect posture and she doesn't flinch at any of the decorations, seemingly resolute and somber around death despite the air of frivolity. She smiles politely when people look her way and even gets a drink and fetches her on own coin once she's had enough time to settle in. Standing by one of the skulls and looking at it thoughtfully, she sips her wine and rolls the coin over the back of her knuckles with a silent musing on her face.

Hamish shows up just a TOUCH late to his own event, then moves to the front of the temple where, even without the special decorations, the Queen still reigns supreme. Or at least is picked out a little bit more than the others. But tonight? Hoboy. Look at all those spiders, all those bats, all those wheels! When at the front of the room he turns toward everyone and says, "Death! The Oathlander's Arvani Dictionary defines Death as 'something something something, I donno, I've never read it'. Haha, but no, I'm not here to preach or, ah, evangelize. This is it. The season is over and tonight we'll move on to the next, with the days of harvest and then the days of serious boozing for the feast week of the Triad of Creation. So the Wheel turns, moving on toward the year's ending and another's beginning. So please, eat all the food and drink all the drink because no one has to work in the morning." He nods to the retainers, like, even you guys. You got my permish to call in sick. "Later in the evening we will play against the Wheel and prizes will be on offer. And at the end of the evening I have a death's mask to present to the person everyone agrees is dressed the best."

"Thank you, Nina," Zoey says to the bard, her smile bright. "I have been looking forward to showing this outfit off for weeks! I am glad it is so well received. And you look lovely as well! Another of your creations?"

Symonesse Grayson arrives with her usual contingent of King's Own guards and with Aindre Grayson, a cousin-by-marriage, on her arm as escort to the ball. While the Queen typically wears brigher colors, tonight she is swathed in umbra silk with the darkness only slightly lightened by the moonstones that glimmer coolly from her stygian jewelry and the bodice of her gown like distant moonlight. As she enters with the Grayson prince, she leans in the murmur something to him before glancing about the temple, her snowy white eyebrows lifted to show how impressed she is with the decorations. "Look how lovely they've made everything. It almost doesn't look like a mausoleum!"

The picture of good cheer, Neilda wanders into the temple from the park, a strip of leather in her teeth, raking her hair back into what might pass for a ponytail. She's trying to talk at the same time to Thea, but it comes out as "ah ah ah-ent er uh er at ah et." Which is not Arvani for anything. She waggles her face at Thea, making the strip flop in indication: help me tie this, it says, much better than her so-called words did.

A formal and polite bow is offered to Symonesse at her arrival, as Cassandra greets her. "It is quite lovely, Your Majesty. Not exactly what I would expect my funeral to look like." she admits with just a hint of amusement in her tone as she looks around. "It seems to be a good turnout though. I hope that it does well for the Harlequins."

Grinning at something Raymesin's said, Tanith is stopped mid-reply at the entrance of first Hamish, and then the Queen of Arx herself. Gasping, Tanith nudges Raymesin. Repeatedly. "Look! She's here! I ... do you think I could hug her? I haven't seen her since-" and her words taper off, the barkeep clearly unsure of proper protocol. And then she's on her toes. "Do you think Austen's assignment will let him come, too?" she asks hopefully, standing on her toes to peer over the crowd. Which is especially funny given who she's standing next to.

Nina is an absolute show-off, who does come to such things to Be Seen, but then again, that is the work of a Bard at times. "Oh, yes," she says to Zoey, "But with the help of Selene's apprentices on this particular gown. It's far more complex than I could have done on my own." She looks up, seeing the Queen walk in, and looks delighted. "Oooo. What a party already."

There's a squint at Neilda as Thea TRIES to understand what she's saying. "You want to me to tie that WHERE?!"she teases. But she takes the stip form her friend's mouth and smirks. "It's not big enough for your mouth, so you must mean hair.."Really. Thea can't help herself. That said, the Malvici goes off to greet people and maybe introduce Neilda as well.

"HEAR HEAR!" Evaristo calls and he lets out a shout of cheerful celebration; he grabs a drink after that and gets started on the 'not having to work tomorrow'-part quite enthusiastically. He bows to lords and ladies, and stops and stares a bit stunned at the Queen - that's his usual reaction whenever he spots her initially, then he smiles and raises his glass at her in a quiet toast.

Kritr has joined the a temporary blue bench.

Kritr sneaks in late and sits quietly down in the back to watch the festivities.

Lady Rebecca looks over and offers a curtsy in the direction of the Queen's arrival before she demurely raises her glass to join Evaristo's toast with a polite smile on face pale face.

Aindre Grayson arrives dressed for the occassion in clothing tailored just for someone intending to make a good impression at a ball. The decor of the place is the first thing to sweep away his attention and he looks all around with something between a little wonder and approval in his gaze before telling Queen Symonesse, "They've done a fine job, haven't they? We should all be so lucky as to find rest in such a festive mausoleum.", with a quiet laugh for the thought of it and then he's taking a measure of the people who are already here and mingling with each other. "It's been something to see all the work that's gone into the whole festival, to be honest..".

Raymesin finishes pinning the last piece of bunting in place, and turns to see what Tanith's moithering about. His eyebrows lift at the sight of Hamish, then lift higher at the sight of Symonesse. "Looks like 'e ain't with 'er," the tall Lowers man murmurs to Tanith, before smiling and waving at the Queen of Arvum without a care for propriety or etiquette.

Thistleton, an elderly and devoted manservant arrives, delivering a message to Cassandra before departing.

Finn the large Northern hunting dog with icy blue eyes, Rocco, the rascally assistant leave, following Thea.

Hamish makes a broad gesture to a group of bards sitting near the tapestry of Jayus. They jump up and start to play some jaunty tunes. Are they about death? Sure. Could some of them be murder ballads? Of course. Is there a fun little nox'alfar ditty Hamish taught them about a couple who fall in love and believe the other is so perfect that they are too good for the world and decide to murder the other with rocks and then they go down to the river and then when they pull out their rocks they realize what the other was about to do and laugh at how silly it all is and then hold on to one another and the rocks as they jump in the river and down like some kind of murder-suicide version of the Pina Colada Song? Of course! The music is for DANCING and FUN and maybe not LISTENING TO TOO HARD, okay?

"Indeed it is," Zoey agrees with Nina before following her gaze. "Oh! There's my cousin with the Queen. I should go say hello. Care to join me?"

Finn the large Northern hunting dog with icy blue eyes, Rocco, the rascally assistant arrive, following Thea.

3 Grimhall House Guards leaves, following Sanya.

Tanith watches Raymesin wave and decides to follow suit, grinning at Symonesse and waving when she sees her. "Ah, it doesn't That's alright, I suspect we'll find him later-oh! There's music!" She laughs.

Evaristo starts minling about, and pauses to stare at Cocine - he bursts out laughing, and admires her with humor and warmth. "Cocine ... you did it," he breathes, "you really did it. HAMISH!" he shouts. "Look at COcine's OUTFIT. Ah, Death herself must be laughing here."

Neilda adopts a slight squat so that her shorter friend has an easy time tying her hair back. "That's a different festival," he says, dimpling neatly as she smooths the sides a bit. "Come on, introduce me to someone who's got a good story to tell. Or -" she scans the crowd a moment, points at Lethe. "She looks like drama, who's she?"

Korka raises an eyebrow at some of the lyrics she's not supposed to listen to, then pushes off the wall, grabbing yet another drink as she does so and heads towards Tanith and Raymesin, "Do you think more or less people will die here than did at the folly?"

"Sure!" Nina says to Zoey, not realizing who Zoey's cousin might be... but, hooray for meeting new people! She walks over to greet the Queen. She curtsies, with her long puffy dress... actually, she does this a few times, as she is passing a few people and it's rather fun to do.

Tanith twitches in surprise, not at Korka but her question. "Did people die at the folly?" she bleats, then looks at Raymesin, hissing, "Did people die at the folly?"

Hamish calls out to Tanith, "Evaristo died at the folly! But only in terms of his pride!" He then sizes up Cocine and gives her a thumbs up. "I love the banana!"

Rebecca wanders over with her cup in hand to take a look at the dress that Cocine is wearing and she asks, "You made that yourself? Its stunning..." She nods a few times and looks around at the other elaborate dresses with the discerning eye of someone new to Arx. "So much talent."

For some, there's a rare sight that makes an appearance at the Festival this evening and that's none other then the Crown Minister of Coin, Rook Champagne. He's apparently dressed appropriately for the function, clad in a complete outfit of grey and ebon, with silver spiderwebs embroidered along the fabric. He's not come alone, either, for Cocine has one arm looped through one of his own and as the pair make their way into view, there's just the touch of a laugh that falls past his lips, "You were right, Mistress Arcuri. It was well worth the wait to witness that attire."

Thea snorts at Neilda, flicking her head. Short her ass. Glancing at Korka, she is curious,"People died? I didn't hear that. But well--I have suppllies so to shorten the death tole,"waving to Nina too. "The dress is great. Thank you." Thea meanwhile takes Neilda to Lethe. "I--can't recall,"waving to Zoey as well. "Lady Zoey. Have you met Lady Neilda Saik?" They'll get there eventually.

Tanith shouts back to Hamish, hands cupping around her mouth, "I'd have paid -money- to see that!" And laughs.

"It was. ONE TIME! One time," Evaristo calls out, looking mock-offended. "I did fine! I wont a lute," he says, "and it is AMAZING." He adds, now really proud; "I made that ap-pealing necklace, you know. But it was Cocine's idea. All of it."

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

Zoey walks with Nina up to Aindre and Symonesse, dipping into a deep, practiced curtsey for the Queen. "Your Highnesses," she greets them both. "Prince Aindre, it has been too long, cousin! We need to have drinks and catch up properly," she tells him. She gestures to Nina. "Oh, let me introduce Miss Nina Autumndale. She is a talented member of the Bard's College and an up-and-coming fashion designer in the city." She hears Thea call her and gives a quick wave.

Lethe finds a spot to sit and watches some of the people nearby. "I died once at an event but not a folly." She looks at Neilda and Thea with a smile. "Hello I am Harlequin Lethe Tyde."

Waving towards Evaristo, Cocine flashes a grin towards him and nods, "I told you I was going to do something different!" Looking to Rook, on whose arm she has arrived, she murmurs, "He made the jewelry for me so I could focus on the outfit." Then she's turning a grin towards Hamish and nodding, "Thank you, Archlector! Master Evaristo made it for me at short notice!" Nodding to Rebecca, she smiles, "My friend's shop was used, but I designed it, yes. Thank you." Looking back to Rook, she offers, "Would you like to go meet them? Archlector Hamisha nd Master Evaristo are both very nice."

Symonesse grins at something Aindre says and then returns quietly, "It's all be rather lovely. Even the Folly." Then there are waves and greetings to exchange. Tanith and Raymesin's waves get an excited one of her own. Her brilliant grin for the pair dims into something more gentle as she returns the greetings of others and then smiles at Zoey and Nina, bowing her head slightly, "It's lovely to see you again, Lady Zoey. A pleasure to meet you, Miss Autumndale. I have heard you play a few times but never had the opportunity to meet you."

Neilda stage whispers at Thea: "We met yesterday. She showed me her green book." As if that's supposed to be something Thea understands. Glancing down at herself in assessment, she judges it's a bowing day rather than a curtseying day - might be the pants? - and bows to Lethe. "Nice to meet you, Harlequin Lethe Tyde. You died? What happened? You seem to have gotten better."

Rebecca has joined the a temporary red bench.

There's a pleasant smile on Rook's lips as he offers a nod of his head as Cocine informs him where the jewelry was made, his gaze shifting over towards the individual in question before he's looking towards Rebecca, "I do have to agree with you. It is a quite the design." Then, his gaze is turning back to Cocine and he's offering another nod of his head, "Most certainly. Let us go say hello and then I can wander over and find a drink."

As the Queen and Prince introduce others, Cassandra steps to the side. Spying someone addressing Cocine, she moves to approach the jeweler. A smile is offered, along with a bow of her head. "Goodwoman Arcuri? I am Cassandra Laurent. Your mother was dear to me." Her hand moves to a bracelet on her wrist, covered in charms. "She made this for me, and I will cherish it always. I wanted to introduce myself. I am sure you have heard plenty of stories about her, but I look forward to knowing you as well."

3 Armed Confessors arrives, following Insaya.

Lady Rebecca goes to find a place to sit and sip her wine as she watches the dazzling outfits and curious conversation happening around the room. She sits with perfect posture and casually people watches some of the finer dressed members of the party.

"So nice to meet you!" Nina says to the Queen. "And, you as well, sir Prince!" she says to Aindre, giving him another curtsey as she has been doing all party so far. "I'm... really flattered that you heard any of my performances. I hope that you enjoy the party. Maybe I'll get the opportunity to play for the crown some time!"

"I got ter throw rotten fruit at Ev," Raymesin points out to Tanith. "Was a real good day. Told you you should'a come." Symonesse's grin gets one in return - an actual grin, not just a baring of teeth - and then Raymesin looks down at Tanith and gives her an actual smile.

Sorrel arrives wearing the most jaunty of stylish party hats. Really, it's the most fashionable thing ever, with its dashing purple feather tucked into its band, and she wears it with flourish. She meanders through the party with a charming smile on her face to socialize.

Thea hears Neilda with a lifted brow,"Green book?" But oh--"Lady Thea Malvici,"she says to Lethe in means of introduction."Pleasure to meet you." When she spies Sorrel, there is a curtsy and slight smile,"Princess Sorrel, good evening."

Kritr is quietly watching in the back.

Thea has joined the a temporary yellow bench.

"I thought the Folly was more exciting than lovely, but it was definitely memorable.", Aindre remarks to the Queen and a smile grabs at his lips as if remembering the thing still conjures up a fair amount of amusement. It isn't but a second after that his cousin is there for his attention and he turns that smile upon her, "Lady Zoey, it /has/ been quite some time. You've forgotten I don't drink.", he tells her with a bit of tease to his tone of voice, "I'd be pleased to catch up sometime." He's looking over to Nina when she is introduced, dipping his head to her, "The pleasure's mine, really. Don't let my cousin drag you into too much mischief." he rounds out with that warning before he is looking back to Symonesse, "You know, hearing her name on your lips, I feel like I do remember you speaking glowingly of Miss Autumndale's performance., he admits.

Lethe looks to Neilda. "It was a game to guess the bad people. I tried to tell everyone, but it didn't work out for me. I did try to do my best at dying. Anyway it is nice to meet you as well." She nods to both Tjea and Neilda.

Already grinning from tales of Evaristo's tragic death-of-pride, Raymesin's continued conversation on it has Tantih laughing outright. And then...! There's that bright grin from Symonesse, Tanith gasping in pleasant surprise, and then squeaking something completely incoherent at her husband as the Grayhope practically beams, just completely thrilled that the Queen seems to remember them.

Neilda turns eyes back to Thea like she's going to answer that, but realizes her faux pas. "Oh, sorry - Lady Neilda Saik. I would have been fine with 'hey! you over there!' too, but that gets confusing with this many people around. Are you an actress?" She bows automatically when she feels Thea's curtsey, like she can ride the coattails of her friend's propriety. Oh, it's a princess! Good call, Thea, says a glance toward her.

"Oh, really? Why thank you!" Nina says. "Zoey is often up to mischief, though sometimes she just tells me about it after the fact." Nina giggles. "But that is the way of bards! Storytellers first!" She looks back at Aindre with a squint smile. "I don't want to keep you from meeting important folks, but since we're just meeting, do tell me, anything interesting I should know about you?"

Insaya doesn't look entirely comfortable, and definitely is not well dressed. But she's here. She's up for it all. She just doesn't seem to know where to get started. She's an apron away from picking up a tray to sling.

Evaristo turns a respectful bow of his head at Cassandra and Rook, having hovered nearby to admire Cocine's outfit there. "Good evening! I'm Second First Harlequin Evaristo Arterius, though really, I am FIRST Harlequin now, and not Second, but I am ALSO the SECOND first Harlequin since Death returned, here in Arx, so I mean, it's still fine to call me Second First Harlequin. But before, I was the First Harlequin but the SECOND one," he explains very sagely. Everyone should understand that. "BUt you can call me Ev."

Zoey gives Aindre a whispered reply and a light laugh. "Besides, there is always juice, or tea, or what have you," she adds, a little louder. She looks at Nina. "If you want to be invited to my mischief, you need only ask," she tells her with a wink.

Smiling warmly at Cassandra, she dips a quick curtsy and offers, "Legate, thank you so much. I'm so pleased to know that my mother left such an impact on so many lives. I will look forward to getting to know you better. I would love to come by sometime and we can speak?" She looks to Evaristo and grins, "Hey! Have you met Rook Champagne? He was apparently travelling for awhile and just returned." She smiles brightly at Rook then looks to Evaristo, "He is also a man interested in adornments of a jeweled nature. And fashion. He apparently 'just had this lying around'." Motioning to his outfit, she chuckles and returns her gaze just in time for Evaristo's dizzying introduction, "So, Ev, how have you been? This all looks amazing! Thank you again for helping me with the jewelry, its truly just perfect."

"At some point, the Crown is supposed to be holding a masquerade ball, but I think most would rather participate than perform for the event, unless you are indeed interested. As Prince Aindre says, I might have mentioned my enjoyment of your music a time or ten." Symonesse's smile is wide enough that her eyes lightly crinkle at the corners before she says, "I am a great fan of good music. I find the members of the Bard's College beyond impressive." Her brows lift at Nina's question to Aindre and she turns to look at the prince as well, bemusement glittering in her aureate eyes as she awaits his answer.

Rook turns his attention over towards Cassandra as she approaches, but he's then looking towards Evaristo, to offer a smile and a nod of his head. His gaze flits back over towards Cocine as she takes care of the introductions and when he looks back over towards Evaristo, it's so that he can offer, "A pleasure to meet you, Ev." If he was at all confused by the title swapping, it certainly doesn't show upon his features in the least. The mention of his outfit draws a quick laugh and a little shrug of his shoulders, "I am a man of many surprises. Fashion is simply one of them. You never know what I might pull out of the wardrobe."

"You would be welcomed, Goodwoman Cocine." Cassandra offers as she turns her attention to Evaristo and his greeting and a hint of amusement touches her eyes, her smile far more subdubed. "It is a pleasure to meet you, the Second First Harlequin." she apparently got what he was explaining, "Your outfits are quite lovely. I just wanted to visit for a moment." Moving back slightly, she looks prepared to depart.

Lethe looks around curiously. "An actress? I do like to watch plays. It would probably be fun to act in one." She pauses as she speaks to Thea and Neilda. "I am glad to be able to attend. There are so many amazing outfits .

Something occurs to Tanith. "The trays," she gasps, blushing. "I'm too busy ogling the scenery to remember such a basic-" she mutters at herself, going over to grab up what looks like a tray of cookies and desserts, passing another tray of drinks to Raymesin. She admires his clearance, his tray can be held above most of the crowd as he walks, before turning to head over to Symonesse and Aindre.

It's like magic, the crowd seems to part around the couple as they hand out drinks and cookies and cakes, Tanith and Raymesin arriving in short order near the Queen and her date for the evening.

"Your Majesty! Your highness," Tanith greets the pair with a grin, offering them both a tray laden with skull shaped cookies dipped in chocolate, both white and dark. "It is so -good- to see you," she tells Symonesse, beaming.

Neilda grins, dimpling again, and shakes her head. One more glance down, and she sighs sidelong at Thea. "I wish I'd had time to get -anything- together-."

"I have NOT! But who has NOT heard of Rook Champagne. Ah, I know your, uh, wife? Yasmine? I am afraid I joined the house, and then left after awhile - nothing big, just one of those realisations we had different goals," Evaristo explains readily. "Legate Cassandra - you too, a legend! I hope I get a chance to talk with you under circumstances where people aren't all drunk and trying to out-pun each other. You sure you can't stay? There will be games! It will be the BEST games."

Thea agrees with neilda,"Me as well. But it's alright." She tells Lethe with a nod,"I enjoyed the last time I attended one. One year I'll dress appropriately." Maybe. She doubts she'll remember.

3 Armed Confessors leaves, following Insaya.

Raymesin chuckles softly at Tanith's flurry, catching up the tray of drinks and bringing it over to Symonesse and Aindre in Tanith's wake. "Welcome ter th'Finale, yer Queenship," he says to Symonesse, offering her a glass before nodding to Aindre and offering him a glass too. He's apparently letting Tanith do most of the talking for both of them.

Hamish makes his way across the floor to the Legate of Arts. "Mother Cassandra!" He nods toward the bards playing something involves a lot of flute tooting and lute hooting. "Might I have this dance?" Are there people dancing? Well, it IS a ball, so if there aren't then there should be! "I assume you, I am truly terrible."

Lethe nods to both Thea and Neilda. "Maybe next time. Even if you aren't the most dressed up it is still nice that you are here. Are either of you going to dance?"

"In the mean time," Nina says to Zoey, raising a finger, "I will invite you to mine!" She smiles at the Queen. "Yes, I LOVE the Bard's College. It really is splendid to have such an institution in our fair city and I was so thrilled when I became a member. Plays, and songs, and stories..." She grins. "But the Harlequins, have also been most kind," she says. "I'm helping with the Setarco branch of the Festival. I've learned so much about Death. I heard she likes to be told good stories."

Prince Aindre falls into listening to Symonesse on his arm so easily that it nearly catches him a little off-guard when Nina asks her question of him and his gaze catches onto her again while he asks, "Interesting?", and then glances over to the Queen briefly before looking back to Nina and confessing, "Since coming to Arx, I've found an appreciation for visiting the menagerie and confiding in the beasts there. I'm sure one of them confided in me in return, one day." with as serious a tone and as cordial a smile as he can wear. "That's interesting, right?" It isn't long after that Tanith and Raymesin arrive. He looks unfamiliar with either of them but no less the pleased, gaze jumping between them while greetings are passed over. "Oh, good evening, both of you!", he greets, assuming the introductions will be smoothed over by some elf.

"Blessed Hamish. It is a lovely event you have put together." Cassandra starts to respond to the Archlector, before she's suddenly asked to dance. She laughs a little at the idea. "I'd believe you would ask the Queen herself to dance in the right situation." There is amusement there, but she gives a polite nod of her head. "A short one." she finally allows. "Most of my dances are far behind me."

Rebecca has left the a temporary red bench.

"Evaristo!" Sorrel calls to the Harlequin in a most cheerful way as she walks towards him, her stylish hat being so terribly stylish upon her head. "Shall we dance? Come dance with me!"

After a while Rebecca quietly slips out with a somber nod for a few people and a soft spoken, "Good evening. Enjoy the ball."

Kritr just watches quietly. He's interested in the spiders, but not the decorative ones.

An incline of Rook's head is given in Evaristo's direction, "That would be her. And trust me, I know all about differing goals and would never hold that against someone." Catching sight of the Symonesse off to one side, there's a lift of his hand in a wave, along with a polite incline should he be noticed.

Nina looks cheerful, smiling with a squint at the Prince's story. She seems quite delighted about it! Her eyes look wide at Zoey, leaning forward a bit.

Evaristo near startles as his name is called out, and he turns with a grin. "Princess Sorrel!" He double-takes at her hat. "That HAT. I... I am floored," he says, and offers his arm to escort her to the dance floor. He nods to Cocine and Rook before he starts off. "Let's dance, your highness - I will sweep you across the dance floor," he promises with a grin.

Evaristo has joined the a dancefloor area.

Symonesse just -looks- at Aindre, a grin on her lips and a thousand quips dancing in the gold of her eyes. She hesitates to say anything, almost as if she can't quite decided which smart-assed thing to offer in return. Then, there are drinks and cookies being delivered by two of her favorites, so Aindre is saved from the Queen's sense of humor or lack thereof. She gives Aindre's arm still looped in hers a little pat before taking the offered drink and grinning at both who deliver it. "Prince Aindre Grayson, these are good friends of mine, Raymesin Ulbran and Tanith Grayhope. Remember I told you about those bread books? Misstress Tanith is the author and Master Raymesin is beloved by out Queen for... Reasons." She gives the prince at her side a little look, as if waiting for his surprise that she names two scions of Lowers' families as friends, before talk of dancing reaches her pointed ears and she gazes longingly toward the dance floor for just a moment.

Offering a grin towards Evaristo as he's pulled off to dance with Sorrel, Cocine looks to Rook, then follows his gaze towards the Queen, leaning in to murmur something to him. Straightening, she gives him a smile, then casts a glance around quickly.

Evaristo checked charm + performance at difficulty 15, rolling 40 higher.

Ilyse, a potentially reformed troublemaker arrives, following Reve.

Orion, a healer's surly Assistant, 2 Redoubt Buccaneers, Reve arrive, following Azova.

Korka wanders around definitely not starting rumors about people who may or may not have died at the folly until she ends up taking a seat next to Kritr, "So. How many past lives have you had?" she asks casually, twirling the wine in her glass then downing most of it.

Korka has joined the a temporary blue bench.

"I've asked the Queen to dance many times, Mother. I've asked a queen or two, as well. It seems I am charmless, but I keep trying." Hamish bows to Cassandra and escorts her out to the dance floor where...

Hamish checked dexterity + performance at difficulty 15, rolling 13 lower.

Olivian peels his way about the soirée until he bumps elbows with his cousin, Thea. A smirk peels itself across his face, "Oh hullo. Fancy meeting you here."

Zoey glances toward the dance floor as well, then greets the couple who have come, smiling brightly. "It is good to see you both again. Enjoying the party?"

...horrors uncounted occur. It's not that he steps on anyone's feet or that he falls and breaks an arm. Or even that he doesn't know how to dance? He just dances with the skull and precision of dad chaperoning the prom. Fortunately, he doesn't try his luck by showing off w- nope, there he is, doing a spin and jabbing his fingers around. It's possible they danced like this when he was a kid? But it's hard to imagine. It's less the sort of dance a person does and more the sort of dance a slightly touched bird might do while trying to impress a potential mate.

Cassandra checked dexterity + performance at difficulty 15, rolling 10 higher.

Nina waves happily at Raymesin and Tanith, very enthusiastically at that. "Oh hello!" She has to take a cookie herself, as soon as they come by. "It's so great to see you both! Still the happiest couple!" she says with good cheer. She tells the Queen: "They really had such a fabulous wedding. But the commoner weddings when they happen, are always great fun I think."

Sorrel checked dexterity + performance at difficulty 15, rolling 32 higher.

Cassandra checked composure + etiquette at difficulty 15, rolling 7 higher.

Neilda glances at Thea, then shrugs a shoulder back at Lethe. "I'm a terrible dancer, but if there's something to drink I can probably be convinced. But I want to meet more people. I feel like I've been away for ages."

....where Cassandra is apparently going to have to carry the pair, wincing only a few times when Hamish steps on her foot. She's even polite about it. No anger, no cross words. She accepted the dance, and apparently her poor feet are going to need another turn on the Wheel when this is done!

If Tanith smiles any harder, her face my split in half. Thankfully, she's just grinning, delighted, giving a balanced, abbreviated curtsy to Queen Symonesse and Prince Aindre. "Your Majesty, your highness," she says to both of them again, much more confidentally. "Oh, gods-" she blurts as the Queen introduces her as the -author- of those infamous books, the barkeep's cheeks going a bit pink. And then Raymesin is being introduced, the glimmer in her eyes growing into warm pride as the Queen says her husband's name. "Prince Aindre," she manages, offering the man cookies. "Well met!" Nina is given a grin too, and a delighted laugh at her comment on herself and Raymesin, and their wedding. "Ah! That was your fault, partially, madam Bard!"

Thea is busy with a drink in hand. Whiskey today. When she's suddenly bumped! "He-!"she starts to speaks and looks over. "Olivian!"she hushedly murmurs. "Help! There's dancing! I'm a horrible dancer and,"seeing Neilda and Lethe, she impishly grins. Thrusting her cousin in the spotlight, she introcuces him,"Have you met my unc--er, cousin Olvivan Malvici. SWORD of Malvici?" Thea emphasizes sword for Olivian's benefit. Because she knows he hates it.

Tanith adds to Zoey, "I am! It's a delightful turn out."

Lethe nods to Neilda. "You should go and meet more people and get a drink. She watches Thea and Olivian. "I like your outfit. I am going to get a drink, but I'll be back."

Raymesin inclines his head deeply to Symonesse, and not nearly so deeply to Aidre. "Your 'Ighness," he greets the man. And then for Nina, another broad smile. "That weren't the weddin', Mistress Bard, that was the party as Ev made us 'ave," he points out to the bard. "Good fun, though, an' yer playin' was far too grand for th'likes'a us."

Tilting in as Cocine murmurs something, Rook answers and then considers a moment, only to then give a low chuckle, "On second thought, let's go make our way over in that direction." A smile is given and he's then beginning to make his way over in the direction of Symonesse, Tanith, Raymesin and Aindre.

"Hullo all, pleased to make your acquaintances! I had actually come by to seek revenge, but it seems that Thea gets the ambush off once again!" He grinned and inclined his head, "Oh this old thing?" The tall man winked playfully, "Was that you asking me to dance, Thea? I stand shocked."

Olivian played it up for all he was worth.

"You had clever games and lovely guests. I only helped a little," Nina says, and then she eats a cookie. Fortunately she has no gloves and so has no concern for getting chocolate on her fingers. "Oh! And good food, too. That's a critical part of ANY party. Noble or common alike."

"The wedding was much smaller, and not nearly as well publicized," Zoey tells Nina. "As a matter of fact, I did not even realize I had intruded on it until they were saying their vows!"

Reve arrives with Azova, chatting amiably likely about nothing and everything at all. It is small talk, clear and simple, and most definitely just in service of making the stroll to the ball less dull. It might also be small talk because he is slightly distracted by the woman on his arm, see. Conversation is kept light. As they near, he quirks a brow and casts a sidelong glance to Lady Darkwater in a rather 'what would you like to do?' fashion. Or maybe that's 'where would you like to go?' Who knows!

If Aindre is getting a -look- he doesn't seem to notice it at all. He's just so busy paying attention to other things like the the drink that is offered out and he does take his own after Symonesse takes the first of them, "Oh, it turns out I have heard plenty of you both now that I have names for the faces..", he says to both Raymesin and Tanith and not in a displeased way at all. "I heard quite a good deal about the bread books." he goes on to promise, "..and just baking in general." If there is a surprise for him in how Symonesse has befriended people such as these two it doesn't show through his kept composure - purposefully so - while Tanith is recovering from being outed as an established baking author. "Perhaps I can get you to write a little something in my copy of it sometime. I am an avid reader, after all." It's not all so much that Aindre misses Symonesse's look of longing over toward the people dancing, "Why don't we go pay our respects to the Queen with a bit of rhythm?", he suggests to her, letting that smile of his broaden some.

Azova vowed not to miss this event, and by the gods she meant it. "Oh my. I fear we might have arrived during some Death ritual I haven't learned of yet." she mutters towards Reve, when Hamish and his amazing dance moves are one of the first things seen on the dance floor after arrival. "Perhaps one known onto to those of the rank Legate and above." she decides, since Cassandra appears to be a mostly willing participant. "Drinks first, I think."

Neilda watches Lethe go, then turns attention where Thea directs it, and leans her head back to give Olivian a very lenghty assessing look. "He doesn't /look/ like a sword," she says, giving a peevish look at Thea. "Though I guess at something like this even a sword can dress up." Thea then gets a look that says: well? Are you gonna dance... with your unc--er, cousin? (It's a complicated look.)

With a delighted pirouette, Sorrel spins into Evaristo's arms as they dance. And they are good at the dancing. Really quite impressive. "Thank you!" she says to him regarding her incredibly fashionable hat. "Merimange Prycop's riding spider Charlotte crafted this hat for me and insisted I pick out the largest feather possible for the brim. She made it from her own silk! Rather than eating me or something less friendly. It is the Most Stylish of Party Hats, I am told by the Nox'alfar."

Thea coughs as she watches Hamish. So much, she doesn't answer Olivian just yet. But then he gets a glower! Mixed with a innocent look. What would you call that? Age of innocence?"I don't know what you would be paying me back for!" That's a lie. Yes she does. There's a nudge of Olivian toward Neilda,"He is. He's just--been resting too much I think. But no. I'm not dancing. I figured you two could get acquainted.!"

Kritr makes room for Korka to sit next to him on the bench if she likes, replying to her in a voice louder than is necessary for polite conversation. "None." And adds. " for the spiders."

"You're right!" Nina says to Prince Aindre. "It's a party. I should go and dance too." Nina gathers her skirts up, and moves for now in the direction of the dance floor, where people are already dancing to varying degrees of success, or lack thereof.

Evaristo makes sure to duck out of Hamish's way as he leads Sorrel onto the dance floor - the way HE moves, well, he can sure dance. When he said he'd sweep Sorrel across the dancefloor? He meant it. Her feet sometimes leave the floor. "Wooah," he breathes at her story, regarding the hat with even more delight. "Maybe I should ask the hat for a dance?" he suggests with a grin, and a wink. " it," he warns and sweeps her away from Hamish there. "Archlector Hamish has devised a NEW sort of dance in honor of our Queen of Endings. It's a dance that should end, very quickly. And never to begin again."

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

"It's actually one of the more charming compliments I've received, might I beg of your name?" Olivian asked Neilda, it was pretty clear that he was playing the fop all the way to the proverbial hilt. Or literal one in this case? Complicated as well.

"That's not creepy," Korka replies to Kritr in a tone that implies it is, in fact, pretty creepy. She leans a hand on the bench and has more of her drink.

"Oh gods, was I charming?" Neilda's face pulls, and she shoots Thea a brief look. Whatever she gets back, she looks at Olivian again. "It was an accident." Nevertheless, she steps forward, threads a hand through Olivian's arm. "Lady Neilda Saik," she says, and murmurs something further before giving Thea just the most impossibly cheesy grin. Illegal, that grin.

"What...? What is the Archlector doing?" Sorrel inquires a bit worriedly of the First Harlequin as they dodge around Hamish, who is doing That Thing He Does. "Well," she says to Evaristo. "I am Keeper of the Party Hat, but I suppose I might be convinced to lend it to you for special parties or somesuch." And they dance. And it's awesome.

"It is not." Kritr agrees, oblivious to Korka's tone. "I have heard that these spider can be trained." He gestures to the temple, as if the spiders hiding in the niches the room are visible to him. The noise and music has him raising his voice to be heard, as if that were necessary.

Symonesse's eyes are on Hamish as he does... whatever that is that he's done. Is it dancing? Maybe technically. She tilts her head a little and murmurs, "Sure, but let's go dance -after- Hamish throws his back out. He is far too careless with his joints." She tsks slightly and takes a drink before shifting her attention to Tanith and Raymesin once more, laughing a little, "I am sorry to have missed it. I do love weddings of all sorts. Prince Aindre is indeed a most avid fan of those books. His subsequent interest in baking has been delightful to see."

Hamish gives Cassandra an enormous bow when the song finishes. "Thank you, Mother. You are as light on your toes as Dame Hilda Acheron herself!" Evaristo gets a look for a moment before Hamish jumps in and does a particularly aggressive dance move at him, so aggressive, then he backs off of the dance 'floor' and instead heads over to where Prince Aindre and the queen are. On his way he stops to first smile at Korka, then lean in like he's going to give her a sweet little kiss before scooping a spider off of her shoulder and continuing on. "Your highnesses! So glad you could both make it. I'm somewhat surprised to see the some of your other cousins didn't make it, Symonesse! Probably for the best, though. Nothing ruins an evening like someone getting eaten by a giant spider. All the crying! Ruins a party." To Aindre Hamish says, "I do hope that you'll participate in tonight's games this time!"

Reve takes a look at all that dancing there, both brows lifting in unison, and he is most definitely taking Azova up on that suggestion. "Drinks are spectacular," he agrees, heading in the direction with all due haste. Hello liquor. As soon as some suitably colored liquor is available, say amber colored, he acquires not just one glass but two. Naturally one is offered to the lady. "I believe I owe you a dance," he points out to her. Mind you, Reve is overlooking the party as a whole as he speaks, as though considering where they might travel next.

"A pleasure, Lady Saik." Olivian put on his Cheshire grin and swept his a leg back to perform what could only be described as part-bow, part-curtsy and part fencer's salute, the whole affair looking completely ridiculous, "Don't worry Lady Saik, I got you on this one."

Thea spies Azova distantly, giving her slight wave after she's done distracting her cousin. Job well done as far as she's concerned. Looking at Olivian,"Worse? I can't imagine!"*insert sarcasam!* There's a wink at Neilda, maybe a chuckle. But then there's a yell. Well, a raise of voice. Thea is already looking for Lord Kritr. Like she knows he's here.

Noting that the conversation has shifted away to another guest, Zoey dips into one more brief curtsey before parting company with the Graysons and finding a place to sit for the moment.

Zoey has joined the a temporary red bench.

After they dance, Cassandra heads to the side of the dance floor. Receiving a message, she looks it over and her fingers crush around the paper. "If you will excuse me? I hope the event goes well for you, Blessed." She offers to Hamish, a polite, if stiff bow, before she turns to depart.

"Not all of them," Korka mutters, sparing Hamish a look when it turns out Kevin's been climbing up her back this whole time and giving a little shudder. "I'm not sure why someone would want to try to train something so fragile and squishable. That may be why I don't have children."

Evaristo laughs, amused and happy. "He's fine," he reassures, "he's just enjoying life and not worrying. If I could lend that hat even ONCE, that would be a memory of a lifetime! But, I am happy to admire it like this, too," he promises. The dance ends, and he releases Sorrel to bow deeply to her. "Thank you - that was a DELIGHT."

Azova returns Thea's wave, a smile flashed her way while those drinks are procured by Reve. And, once that amber colored liquid is passed to her in a glass she partakes of it in as composed a way as possible really, all things considered. "You do owe me a dance. Perhaps even several." she agrees. "Can we do that *with* drinks in hand though?" She's game!

Piccola is on her way as Cassandra is on her way out.

As usual, she looks somewhat out of place. Black silk looks good on her, but shirts and pants aren't really en vogue for petite women with short-cropped hair that puffs and pops from her scalp. "Legate," she says to her formally, inclining her head respectfully in passing. Her right hand rests on the pommel of her simple sword. "Crowded," she murmurs, mostly to herself.

She takes a post near the entrance, as if unsure whether to venture further.

"I don't intend to train the small ones." Kritr announces more than confides to Korka.

"Evaristo, it was INDEED a delight!" Sorrel declares as she bows to him in return, and then she sweeps off the Party Hat and holds it out to him. "I do want this back, but enjoy it for the ball! I shall make do with my most perfect hair ribbon."

Neilda takes a step back from Olivian, fans herself with a hand, putting on the airs of someone who has been simply overwhelmed by a supremely attractive performance, the sort of colorful frippery that seduces some species of birds. "All /that/," she says. "You hardly /need/ me, Lord Olivian, /sword/ of Malvici. You've covered all the bases!" She is... a stunningly terrible actress. Nonetheless, she follows this with a bow so deep her fingertips graze across the ground. She is caricature.

Hamish takes Festival of Death prize bag from the mysterious backpack of DEATH.

Tanith doesn't seem to know what to think about the information inferred to her from both Symonesse and Aindre, her mouth opening to respond, only to close, then open again and ... "I-I would be happy to sign the book. Books!" she chokes, and then smiles, dark eyes bright with amusement. "The Prince has taken up baking ... because of -my- ...?" she echoes the Queen, staring at her. "Oh! That's good... that's wonderful! Always happy to hear about people enjoying themselves! With baking! Baking is great! It's good for stress, great to relax with. And the outcome? Everyone's happy, plenty to share with, not small, my recipes."

As Cassandra is passing Piccola, she offers her a little smile. And if allow, will touch her shoulder. "You'll be fine, General." She gives her a little smile as she moves to depart. Another time, she may dance with the tactical sized general.

Raymesin, standing around with Tanith beside him and a tray of drinks in hand, goes to find other people to supply drinks to since the people who'd been nearby have gone dancing. Tanith's tray has one fewer cookies than it did, and Raymesin appears to be happily - and surreptitiously - munching on a skull.

"I think the idea, Lady Azova, is to drink at least half of your beverage quite swiftly and then if you want to, attempt with it in hand," counters Reve with a sparkle in his eyes. Now, given his scanning of the area, he spies Piccola taking up post. "Is my cousin playing guard?" he asks the Darkwater as though she might know such a thing. He lifts a hand in Piccola's direction to serve as a greeting.

Olivian laughs, running a hand through his dark hair, "I'm -something-, that's to be sure. Usually the method by which the rest of my family looks to seem more serious, put-together and competent. Can I get you a drink?" Clearly this is a man who does not mind making an ass of himself for someone else's benefit, or at least mirth.

Hamish drops Festival of Death prize bag.

"Ah. Well then, I should clearly adhere to tradition." Azova concedes, and drinks exactly half of what was left in her glass. She only coughs a little bit afterwards too, until Reve waves towards Piccola and she does the same to offer the woman a greeting. Sorrel too is spied handing her hat off to Evaristo and the pair of them are waved to as well. "Questioning the cousin first, or...?" A chin nod is given towards the dance floor.

"Thank you, Legate," replies Piccola dryly before she continues.

Here comes the General. She surveys the crowd, and spies a hand held up. Her eyes narrow. She walks in that direction, purposefully and deliberately. Ladies and gentlmen. "Cousin," she says to the Lord Halfshav once she is in appropriate speaking range. "Lady Darkwater." She bows curtly at the waist to Azova.

"Am I late?" she asks quietly, looking about with a frown on her face.

1 Templar Initiates, 3 Templar Knight guards leave, following Cassandra.

Zoey takes a moment on the bench, sipping her wine and running a hand over her gown with the grinning skulls woven right into the fabric.

Evaristo makes a happy sound, puts the hat on his head - after taking his circlet off and stuffing it in a pocket - and then grins like a kid as he heads off to the stage where the bards are. "Your highnesses, ladies and gentlement, goodwomen and goodmen, it's time to start some GAMES," he calls out, the bards quieting down completely. A large WHEEL is rolled out on a cart, with an arrow pointing at various odd symbols - there's of course skulls and spiders too. "You will SPIN the wheel, and get a TASK that must be completed! The one with the BEST scores win - there's a total of three winners, first, second, third, well you know how it goes," he says and waves a hand. "So, step up and SPIN ON THE WHEEL!"

That's a lot of talk about baked goods, and Aindre Grayson clears his throat just a touch to let a little resolve steel his face against looking too amused as to come off unbecoming about something like baking. "I'm sure Blessed Hamish is simply setting the trend for new dances to come. He has a strong personality like that.", he says, "He's very dignified, isn't it?", he's going on to assure Symonesse as Hamish hobbles past them after his aggressive dancing. "He is the sort of per-.. oh, Blessed Hamish! Games? We'll see! Now that I know they won't involve a feasting spider I'm not so sure!". His humor is up, no doubt because of Tanith and Raymesin before him. He keeps up his end of the conversation, "I think a signing would be /fantastic/, I really look forward to it. I never thought I'd have time for baking, much less interest, but.. life is surprising is it not?". He asides to Symonesse, "Did you hear that, I'm going to have my copy signed by a real baker and an author. I'm excited for that!", and he certainly seems to be.

Thea clears her throat at Neilda and Olivian. Or job done before finishing her drink. And her ears saved. That done, Rocco quietly hands her a message, causing Thea to--laugh. She murmurs lowly to him,"I can defintely do it!"

Neilda has joined the line.

Nina has joined the line.

Lethe has joined the line.

Zoey has joined the line.

Korka has joined the line.

Tanith has joined the line.

"Please," says Neilda, appropriately, as she seems pleased - dimples tell no lies. "Oh! Let's spin the wheel first. My luck is absolute /shit/." Which appears to please her. She blows an air kiss at Thea before drifting to spin the wheel - hopefully with Olivian.

Raymesin has joined the line.

Reve does actually lift a hand to wave to Sorrel as well, a moment after Azova does. "I believe that answers that," he says with amusement to the Darkwater lady as Piccola approaches them. "Let the drink get to your head. I need to at least pretend to be a better dancer than you." That cheat, he is just sipping at his beverage, pointedly taking his time given his cousins approach. When she does, he greets her similarly. "Cousin. And only fashionably so."

Olivian has joined the line.

Korka tilts her head just slightly at Kritr's answer, "Ah," is all she says, so devoid of judgement it might make his ancestor's cringe, "I'm surprised you aren't over there talking to the Queen then."

"After dancing like that, I would say that it is a blessing that they have chosen not to come today. I think it might be Baron Von Pig's birthday. Or maybe is getting married again? I'm not sure, but there is some sort of Court event happening. You're just stuck with me as representative." Symonesse gives Hamish a long look and then says, "I was going to ask you to dance myself, but I've changed my mind. I enjoy all eleven of my toes and have no desire to lose any." She beams at Tanith and shrugs, "You have a way with words, Mistress Tanith." She just grins at Aindre's enthusiasm for signing before Evaristo announces that the games are about to begin. She leans in the murmur something to him before stepping back with a questioning expression on her face.

ANOTHER cart is brought out - it contains things. Lots, and lots of things. Everything from bricks to clothes pins. All to be used in this very strange game, with people getting creative.

Thea slips out at the message, baecause--some things need to be attended to!

Thea has left the a temporary yellow bench.

Finn the large Northern hunting dog with icy blue eyes, Rocco, the rascally assistant leave, following Thea.

Turn in line: Neilda

Neilda has rolled 1 12-sided dice: 5

Hamish has joined the line.

Neilda has rolled 1 42-sided dice: 1

Cocine has joined the line.

Nina stepped back to get some food, but then she walks over to the game cart as it's brought out. It looks very strange to her and she wants to get involved somehow! But... what is this? How random. Perfect.

Neilda checked command + athletics at difficulty 15, rolling 2 lower.

Kritr nods at Korka's words. "Yes. That was my thought too." He doesn't move though, staying in his seat and watching the festivities.

"Oh the worst part is when they're all 'aaagh, it's chewing me up, it's gnashing me and I am dying' and I'm just like, please, spiders don't chew their prey. They're holding you with their chelicera before they inject you with their venom and liquify your insides then just sort of slurp you down. It's _completely_ different!" Hamish shakes his head and looks back to the queen. "Oh, I think we'll dance after the contests. You'll find everyone is prone to pruning a toe or three." He turns to watch the show. I mean contest. Definitely a contest.

3 Armed Confessors arrives, following Insaya.

"I suspect you'll have little trouble with that. But letting the liquor go to my head means that I have an excuse when I do not dance well." This, Azova decides, is an excellent strategy. "Lady Tessere." The other woman's bow is returned with a respectful nod of her head. "We didn't arrive too long before you did actually. But, it seems that the games are only just beginning? So, I would say it's as if we arrived just in time. Avoid the small talk, try to win some prizes." Apparently she herself is here for the drinking and dancing though. "... definitely good to miss the small talk when it's about how spiders eat their prey."

Evaristo gets a list of names as people start to line up for this strange sort of game. "Lady Neilda Saik, spin the wheel!" he says and grins. Once she has, he looks through his cards. "Lady Neilda, you must command Queen Symonesse to do something athletic. Whether she does or not, well..." He grins over at Symonesse. "We shall see!"

Turn in line: Nina

Nina has rolled 1 12-sided dice: 5

Nina has rolled 1 42-sided dice: 17

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

Tanith grins at Aindre, but does a double-take at Symonesse talking about her 'eleven toes', looking -intensely- curious. Feeling bold, she gives Symonesse a wink, not forgetting the comment about Tanith's way with words. "I have a fantastic recipe on biscuits, but they're baked in a mold, so that when you melt butter on them, it seeps into th-" But then there's a game announced, and a wheel rolled out, and oh my. Oh my! "I will send you a signed copy, your highness, or sign one if you've already got it," Tanith assures Aindre with a bright smile and a curtsy, before tugging at Raymesin to join her in line. "C'mon!" she laughs.

Nina checked command + etiquette at difficulty 15, rolling 38 higher.


Piccola looks at the line that is forming for the games. "I suppose, when in Arx -- " She looks to Reve first. " -- but if you could get me a drink, cousin? In a mug. Whiskey, if possible. Thank you." She gestures at said line. "I'll keep a spot, if you wanted to join."

And so she does, wandering quietly to wherever she needs to be.

Piccola has joined the line.

Sorrel has joined the line.

Insaya has gotten into some sort of impromptu dance-battle with one of the servers meanwhile, in her interval. Or possibly someone has gotten an hors d'oeuvre down their tunic in back. It's going down!

Sorrel wanders over to mingle with people who aren't yet playing the game with its strange tasks, though she seems quite amused, especially since Evaristo is now wearing her hat. She drifts in the Queen's direction and offers her a sweeping curtsey. "Don't you like Harlequin Evaristo's hat, Your Majesty? It's quite the Party Hat," she says brightly.

Raymesin gets pulled over to join the line, and abandons the tray he'd been carrying in order to do so. He polishes off his cookie with his back to Tanith, and when he turns round it's with an air of innocence that's somehow lacking a few yellow canary feathers floating gently downwards.

Zoey has left the a temporary red bench.

"Ah Nina, my dear fellow bard! Your turn to SPIN THE WHEEL," he calls out, and once Nina HAS spun it, he checks his cards once more and calls out: "Nina, you shall COMMANDINGLY breach some sort of ETIQUETTE, but so commandingly that nobody dares to argue!"

Neilda is first to spin the wheel, which means she is the first to faaaaaaiiillll. She spins, hears her task, and - bewildered, looks at Olivian, like he knows what's supposed to happen here. "You want me to get her to -" um. Suuuuuuure. To Olivian, she says: "Maybe... two drinks. The smile that comes LACKS DIMPLE, for she is all nerves.

Now she could probably affect some sort of commanding presence in other circumstances? Maybe. But instead she winds her way over to the queen, bobbing side to side like she's too shy for words; and then when she gets closer takes a deep breath. "/ALRIGHT MAGGOTS, DROP AND GIVE ME/ -" and she dissolves into laughter halfway through. "Oh my gods, can you even do a jumping jack in that dress? Please. Have mercy." She's still laughing, and she swipes at an eye quickly. Maybe she's been gone long enough nobody knows who she is.

Turn in line: Lethe

Zoey leaves her spot on the bench to join the others waiting their turn as well. "Oh, this should be fun!"

Tanith sees crumbs on Raymesin's otherwise perfect physique, eyes narrowing at him as she reaches out all too casually to dust at his chest and clavicle. "Ahem. These are for the -guests-," she remarks, amused. Then balks, as she notes how many are missing from the tray she sets down. "Raymesin!" she laughs. "How many did you -eat-! When did you take those...?"

Lethe has rolled 1 22-sided dice: 17

Lethe has rolled 1 12-sided dice: 12

Nina gets a note passed to her. She looks at it, and smiles a second, and then she realizes it's her turn up.

Nina steps into the spin circle, and receives her task to do. She considers the task for a moment, and then she laughs at the silliness of it. But she did have an idea earlier, so now she decides for everyone. She makes a proclamation. "Very well. Then. Since it is now up to me to change the etiquette of the world, I hereby declare that the MOST proper and polite thing you can all do is go get some food on your fingers. Chocolate is preferable, but we can also have allowances for sauces and jams. If you shall walk around with the stain of a sauce upon your lips and fingertips then you have done the most polite thing that you can do today!" She waggles a finger. "Or else you're being rude!!" It's cute. But it is somehow quite remarkably commanding. No one likes a stern talking-to from a schoolmarm.

Lethe has rolled 1 42-sided dice: 24

Insaya comments to her dance nemesis, "What? No! She said she bakes them in A mold, not IN mold. And the maggots thing what completely separate. Where is YOUR head right now. Gross."

Symonesse checked dexterity + athletics at difficulty 15, rolling 1 higher.

Lethe checked willpower + investigation at difficulty 15, rolling 0 higher.

Symonesse hears Evaristo nominate her to participate in a party game and makes a face at him. By the time that Neilda approaches, her smile is bag though and she outright giggles at what she chooses to say. She gives the woman a wink and says, "The day I can't do a jumping jack in any dress is that day that I ask the Queen to recycle me." The Queen sets her drink aside, takes a moment to limber up, and then, indeed, does a jumping jack at Neilda's command. It's not very graceful, but it gets the job done.

Olivian laughs, "Two drinks it is then, I'm parched..." The tall swordsman wandered off briefly to pleasantly accost a server for refreshments before returning with a trio in hand.

5 Silvershields, Jeeves, a sophisticated valet leave, following Rook.

Once the votes are cast Sir Daniel wnders over to murmur something in Hamish's ear. Hamish gives a nod and says, "Daniel, you could have just said it out loud or written it down. My ear is all moist now. It's very unpleasant." He takes out a small piece of paper, quickly writes something down on it, then waves it in the air like it's the winning ticket. "The impromptu and unannounced best dressed contest is over and based on a secret poll it has been determined that, aah, Mistress Nina Autumndale is our winner! Congratulations to the best dressed at the finale ball of the Festival of Death, and, honestly, frequently the best dressed in general!" Hamish pulls out a truly gobsmackingly amazing leather death mask and offers it to Nina. "Your prize. The only way you could be more beautiful. To a certain group of people. Who maybe you wouldn't want to be lovely to? I'm not here to judge. That's Blessed Avery's job."

Evaristo cheers at Lethe, another Harlequin. "Lady Lethe! You shall spin the wheel." Once she has, he checks cards, and he has to laugh. "Ah, you will SEARCH that bucket there with thousands of tiny marbles. THREE of them has skulls painted on them. Find them, and do it QUICK," he says - the bucket is brought out on the floor so she can do it there. "Cheer her on, everyone!"

Hamish drops an unusual leather skull mask with gold, citrine, and onyx teeth.

It's hard to compete with playful games and Queenly jumping jacks, but Gianna nonetheless tries. Or at least sweeps in, adjusting a rose-gold hair ornament tucked into an elegant updo. Best dressed? NO. She is TOO LATE.

Insaya is overheard praising Nina: So stylish! Drop dead gorgeous.

Turn in line: Zoey

Zoey has rolled 1 12-sided dice: 12

Nina gets an unusual leather skull mask with gold, citrine, and onyx teeth.

Zoey has rolled 1 42-sided dice: 22

"Whiskey it is," remarks Reve, amused as he regards Piccola. Is he offended at all by the request? No, of course not. He simply waves her onward and then with a lift of his brows refocuses upon Azova. Quite pointedly he drains his whiskey, the whole entire thing. Yes, he has to grimace just slightly afterward in a rueful fashion. "I suppose that means I need to fetch more," he points out to her. "And that I am not responsible for any terrible dancing later in the evening." He's totally stealing her tricks, see.

Zoey checked willpower + legerdemain at difficulty 15, rolling 2 lower.

Nina looks so impressed when the skull is brought out. Her eyes bug out wide and she looks at it. "Wow. Thank you. But there's so many lovely dresses here... and hats and coats and..." She nonetheless picks it up, and lifts it, with a bow. She is being humble but it's also clear she did put some effort into sourcing that gown. She nods to Hamish and then says, "We'll talk of course later too!"

Symonesse sneaks away to the dance floor while everyone is distracted with the game and the floor is relatively empty, but also so she doesn't get volunteered for more jumping jacks.

Symonesse has joined the a dancefloor area.

Lethe starts looking in the bucket. At the word quick she looks worried. This could take a while. She gets started and tries her best to find the ones with the skulls. She takes a closer look at one she thinks might have a skull.

Evaristo laughs, seeing the Queen doing that jumping jack - she's given a thankful warm smile from there on the stage, and a nod of respect, before he turns to call out. "Lady Zoey, please spin the wheel!" The wheel is spun, ticking cheerfully, and Evaristo checks his cards... "Well well well, you shall have your patience tested too. Bring out the TRAP," he calls and a small box is brought out and placed before Zoey. "You need to move the mechanisms with dexterous fingers, and open it!" he explains to Zoey.

Turn in line: Korka

Korka has rolled 1 12-sided dice: 3

Korka has rolled 1 12-sided dice: 7

Neilda is /definitely/ cry-laughing when Symonesse actually does it. "You are a /dream/," she says, clapping her hands over her heart a moment, a swoon she doesn't have to put on. "I'll even wear a dress if you teach me your ways." The grin there is bright, and then she gives Symonesse an equally ridiculous bow (like the one she gave Olivian earlier), before drawing juuuust close enough to murmur something. Then she turns back to Olivian, relieves him of two of the drinks, and kisses his cheek. "Beautiful," she says, and drinks one immediately.

Kritr has joined the line.

Azova's expression falls comically when Reve drains the rest of his glass and then shamelessly rips off her own excuse for poor dancing. "That's just... just completely unfair. The drunk thing is my excuse." she feels compelled to point out, gesturing towards the drinks and tucks her hand under his arm. "I'll go with you, so you can get your refill, Lady Piccola's mug full, and I can get a refill as well. I *know* I can get wasted much faster than you. I'm smaller." she points out, one eye on those playing the wheel game, one eye on the drink table.

Korka has rolled 1 42-sided dice: 15

Kritr follows Kora up to get in line for this silly game. His expression indicates that he isn't at all cedrtain that this is a good idea.

Zoey looks at the the box carefully, then asks, "Do I pick it up, or does it stay on the floor?"

Korka checked stamina + propaganda at difficulty 15, rolling 4 higher.

Evaristo says, "You can do however you want, Lady Zoey!"

Gianna eases over toward Tanith and murmurs, "Just what game are they all playing? I can't say I can figure it out so far."

Prince Aindre does manage to look a touch surprised when Queen Symonesse is called on to do a jumping jack. He's happy to take her drink when she goes to set it down, keeping it with his own and trying not to drown in amusement when she actually goes through with the jack and the jumping. Before he can say anything in the way of teasing or cheekiness she's sneaking off to the dance floor and he's looking for a person to pass both of those drinks off to, settling them into some hands as he wends off through the crowd of people and away from the game.

Tanith looks at Gianna as she stands in line, ready to go next. "I ....have no idea. It's rather chaotic!" She laughs.

Aindre has joined the a dancefloor area.

Evaristo calls Korka up, she spins the wheel, and she gets a task! "Korka, you shall scream as many positive attributes of the Queen of Endings as you can, in ONE breath!"

"Oh! And you're next? Well, good luck," Gianna tells Tanith, stepping away to observe with the others.

Turn in line: Tanith

Tanith has rolled 1 12-sided dice: 8

Tanith has rolled 1 42-sided dice: 29

Zoey gives the box another once-over before carefully picking it up. Evaristo did call it a trap, after all.

Insaya is still dancing away, in a relatively simple dance of linked hands in a line, The line snakes this way and that, and goes under the arms of people moving, resulting in a jostling knot. Once it clears itself, at the break in the measure, the head of the line begins a jump and turn sequence that then flows down the line. After the last person has gone, the head of the line starts weaving their way down as motion resumes.

Piccola remains quietly awaiting her turn. And her drink.

Olivian balanced the drink on the palm of his hand, taking a shallow sip as he watches the goings on with some curious interest. "Maybe I should have just brought a bottle.." He noted with a laugh as Neilda makes one of the drinks disappear between two heartbeats.

Tanith checked perception + stewardship at difficulty 15, rolling 11 lower.

"Tanith, our most SALACIOUS BAKER - spin the WHEEL!" Evaristo calls out, and once she has, cards are checked - and he laughs out loud. "Ahem. Tanith, there are five Harlequins here tonight that just do NOT comport themselves properly - find them all but do it quick! They all have some flaw or another, not FITTING."

Reve shakes his head in response. "Who said anything about things being fair?" he counters to Azova, lips twitching. That being said, he's off escorting her back to the refreshment table so that he can see about acquiring the required number of beverages, and of course one of those drinks has to come in a mug. "Ah, Lady Azova," he counters quite gravely. "Perhaps I can act far more in my cups than you." His brows lift in unison, almost - but not quite - like a dare. Or maybe it is. Still, drinks are gathered and they travel back toward Piccola.

Turn in line: Raymesin

Raymesin has rolled 1 12-sided dice: 5

Raymesin has rolled 1 42-sided dice: 27

Korka gives Kritr a very long look. Too long. The kind of look that ought to be broken up but instead just...sits there. But she does not, standing up and getting in line to spin the wheel and then receiving her task. She gives Evaristo a simple nod, moves over towards the altar to look up at the big figure of Death behind the altar, taking a deep breath and screaming at the top of her lungs, "THE QUEEN OF ENDINGS AND BEGINNINGS IS GREAT WITH OLD PEOPLE AND BABIES SHE LOVES PUNS WHICH IS GREAT BECAUSE THEY GET VERY OLD LIKE THE SOULS SHE COLLECTS MOST OF THEM SHE LOVES YOUR STORIES AND PROBABLY DOESN'T THINK YOU'RE BORING IF SHE DOESN'T SEND YOU BACK BUT YOU KNOW YOUR LIFE HASN'T BEEN VERY ADVENTUROUS IF YOU DON'T GET CAST BACK TO LIVE A NEW LIFE IN THE SHADOW OF YOUR OLD LIFE LIKE IT'S SOME KIND OF BIG PUN WHICH IT PROBABLY IS AND SHE CAN ROCK A ROBE OR ARMOR BECAUSE FAT ISN'T AN ISSUE FOR HER WHAT WITH BEING A SKELETON WHICH MAKES ONE THINK ABOUT WHAT COMES FIRST THE SKELETON OR YOU AND fuck I'm done," she throws up both hands and coughs a bit, reaching out to take a drink from someone nearby and drink it.

Raymesin checked command + medicine at difficulty 15, rolling 31 higher.

Nina clapclapclaps at the very exciting and enthusiastic speech she just heard! "Hooray! Good speech!!"

Hamish calls out to Evaristo, "That's easy! She's married to one and then you, me and the queen are three more!" He shakes his head. "Doing jumping jacks. Like some kind of dockworker! I do th-" He's cut off when Korka starts screaming and sits there staring at her through all of that, then nods and gestures to a server. "Send her some milk. She's an Oathlander. It'll do her good."

Neilda gives Olivian a tart look, as if he has accused her of some dire flaw. "One's for drinking, one's for carrying," she says. She lifts the glass to him, keeping one eye on the proceedings, and toasts him. "May you get a task that is /truly/ beyond this lifetime," she says, and sips.

Tanith looks completely confused by the wheel and the task it spits out, eyes crossing. She darts about to the first Harlequin she sees, this on being ... her husband. "You ... you are... uh-" She squints at him. "I mean, he's acting like Harlequins ought to, with... with the looking mena....wait no, you're smiling, Raymesin. A lot. But that's-" She looks at Hamish. "You! Stop being so funny!" No wait. "Wait, you're always funny." She pauses to peer at Evaristo. She stares at him. Hard. And then just goes on to another Harlequin, apparently giving up. "The Queen! Yes, she's-" Tanith gives up. "None of them are doing anything wrong! Harlequins harlequinning!" But, despite this failure to find flaws, she's laughing, cheeks pink and delighted.

"Yes, but if I had gotten two more, you could have had one to bestow upon someone. It would have been very tasteful and elegant I am sure." He quirked a smile, taking a considerable dent out of his glass.

Raymesin is next, he spins the wheel, the cards checked; "WELL! Bring out the BOX OF MEDICINAL THINGIES!" he calls, and a box is brought out and handed to Raymesin. It has... bandages in it. LOTS of bandages. "TAKE CHARGE OF THE SITUATION - people are WOUNDED! Bandage TEN people PROPERLY!"

Olivian laughed, "Yes, but if I had gotten two more, you could have had one to bestow upon someone. It would have been very tasteful and elegant I am sure." He quirked a smile, taking a considerable dent out of his glass.

Turn in line: Olivian

Hamish grimaces at Evaristo's challenge to Raymeson and adds, "Don't stab them first!" Then, after a second, "Well, maybe just a little!"

Sorry Reve, Azova is momentarily distracted by the litany of attributes that Korka is managing to shout all in one breath. "... that was rather a lot. Well done, I think." she gestures towards the woman, then looks back towards the drinks to find the rum she was poured before and refill it. "Are you challenging me to a drunk-off?" Laughing, she shakes her head a little as they walk back to Piccola so her mug of whiskey can be delivered. "Going to fortify yourself before you spin?"

Olivian has rolled 1 12-sided dice: 4

Olivian has rolled 1 42-sided dice: 19

Evaristo leans in to murmur something to Raymesin, and gives Hamish a few mischievous looks.

Gianna makes a little face at 'bandage people properly'. Is it possible to swan in with a fancy dress and then somehow fade into the background? She will try. She is aided by the amusement value of the game, which means few are paying attention to her. So she sneaks off to collect some wine and get out of line of fumbling bandage-related fire.

Olivian checked charm + haggling at difficulty 15, rolling 5 higher.

Insaya has joined the a dancefloor area.

Raymesin smiles as he takes the box with a nod of thanks. And then he's moving among the partygoers, briskly taking command of those who're willing to be taken command of, and bandaging them with a deft touch. Anyone would think he'd been practicing his technique - but then again, Harlequins are encouraged to know at least the basics of medical practice.

Gianna has joined the a temporary blue bench.

Tanith has joined the a temporary blue bench.

While other contestants have been taking their turns, Zoey has been off to the side toying with the box that was presented to her after her spin at the wheel. She taps on different spots, working various mechanisms, and after a click she says softly, "Oh, wait, maybe I've --" Not that she got to finish that statement, as a spring-loaded lid pops open then, showering her and anyone who happened to be standing too close in a rain of bright red powdered ink. After wiping some from her eyes, turning liquid on her hands from mixing with the tears triggered by the reaction, Zoey sighs. "Well, at least is was not glitter."

Evaristo calls out the next in line. "Lord Olivian Malvici! SPIN THE WHEEL!" The wheel spins and spins... it stops on a symbol, Evaristo checks his cards. "Well well! You must CHARM someone to SELL you something for a VERY GOOD PRICE!"

Neilda watches as Olivian goes to spin, but turns to heckle Raymesin. "HEY! You there!" She has a drink, then gestures with her cup - the half-full one. "You're supposed to /kiss/ an owie before you bandage it. Did your mother teach you /nothing/?!"

Hamish considers the challenge for Olivian and gives a slight nod. "That used to be so much easier."

Turn in line: Hamish

Tanith laughs and takes a seat on the blue bench, at Gianna's side, watching Raymesin 'bandage'. "Did you know he's an amazing midwife?" she says out of nowhere, then CACKLES as she hears Neilda. "Maybe someone should go into labor and he can demonstrate!" she cals back to the Saik. There's a glass of something in her hands, and she drinks.

Kritr toches the hurried bandage over his ear with some confusion. He's not sure if he's allowed to take it off afterward.

Hamish has rolled 1 12-sided dice: 5

Hamish has rolled 1 42-sided dice: 7

Nina looks shocked, stepping back as the box Zoey is holding explodes in red dust! But... if any does get on her gown, it will just add to it, so she isn't SO bothered by that now. Then she butsts out laughing.

"My mother died when I were tiny," replies Raymesin to Neilda absently, even as he's applying a bandage to her arm. "So no, she di'n't." The bandage is expertly-tied, at least.

Kritr has left the a temporary blue bench.

Zoey starts laughing too. "Here, Nina, be my towel!" she says, wiping one hand on Nina's dress and grinning.

Well, that's not getting her owie kissed. Neilda pouts at Raymesin, but she can't even argue; she simply eyes the bandaging, peers. "/Passable,/" she judges, venomously bereft.

"Oh Hamish, time to spin that WHEEL!" Evaristo calls out. Once the Archlector has, he looks at his card, and then he sort of half-giggles. "Ahem. BRING OUT THE GIANT CUCUMBER!" he calls. And... from a backroom, the CUCUMBER is brought out. It's a weapon, of a kind. It's got a wooden handle, and at the end is attached a GIGANTIC six foot cucumber-shaped plushie, it must've taken some work to make that and stuff it. "You shall PARADE AROUND and call out 'THE CUCUMBER IS MIGHTIER' at least five times."

Hamish checked command + huge wpn at difficulty 15, rolling 7 higher.

Olivian, now having rolled finds a comely edge to lean upon, nursing his drink and settling into some serious people-watching.

Gianna blinks at the cucumber. She peers at it, paused in the midst of sipping wine, her glass halfway to her lips. She stares at the cucumber and murmurs something.

"You may also hit people. CAREFULLY," Evaristo adds to Hamish. "Everyone should move out of the way!"

Tanith pauses with her drink halfway to her mouth, staring at the cucumber. " next series of books will be about farming," she decides, right then and there.

Turn in line: Cocine

Cocine has rolled 1 12-sided dice: 12

Insaya has finally had enough of the silly dance, and winded, withdraws from the temple.

Insaya has left the a dancefloor area.

3 Armed Confessors leaves, following Insaya.

Cocine has rolled 1 42-sided dice: 33

Lethe continues to look through the bucket of marbles. She smiles as it looks like she's found one of the three.

Nina squeals, but she doesn't actually mind, as the bit of red being added to her gown just joins with the garnets like bits of blood. She shakes it off a bit, and then she laughs.

Reve peers at Korka, shakes his head somewhat, and refocuses at Azova. "Never," he assures her and yet there is just that look of amusement evident that implies he very well may be. That whiskey is passed off to Piccola, freeing him up to enjoy his own beverage. Yet when what cucumber is brought out he is indeed briefly distracted. "I think," he says quietly to her, "... I may need a great deal more liquor."

Tanith peers at the ceiling. "Mmm. Plowing. Lots of plowing," she ponders allowed. She takes another sip, eyeing the turgid vegetable Hamish has to dance around. "With moist, soft furrows."

Hamish doesn't look on board with that at all. "I don't want to shout that. Anyway, we've all seen your cucumber. Not good for much more than a li'l pickle tickle, I think. Still! We do what we do for victory!" He lifts up the very large cucumber, walks right up to some prince who didn't really know what he was signing up for by coming and smacks him right across the face, then screams, "THE CUCUMBER IS MIGHTIER! EXCEPT FOR EVARISTO'S, WHICH IS UNIMPRESSIVE BUT PEOPLE TELL HIM OTHERWISE BECAUSE THEY DON'T WANT TO DEAL WITH ALL THE CRYING!" He waves to Tanith. "I can tell you some stuff about farming! It gets very boring in the fields!" He then turns and whacks someone else with his cucumber. "THE CUCUMBER IS MIGHTIER! MINE, AT LEAST! CAN'T SPEAK FOR ANYONE ELSE!" And this continues three more times, each time with a bit of editorializing.

"My dear Cocine - you look amazing tonight, I love that outfit. Did everyone LOOK?!" Evaristo calls out, and waves Cocine up to the wheel. It spins, he checks her task, and laughs. "Cocine, you have to teach a Harlequin something you know but he or she doesn't, and he has to then DO it. Something creative, you can use whatever is in the cart there. But it must be some sort of thing honoring Death!"

Tanith checked composure at difficulty 15, rolling 14 higher.

Raymesin checked composure at difficulty 15, rolling 0 higher.

Tanith somehow manages to -not- snort wine up through her nose, staring at Hamish as he offers to be her consultant for her next series of books. "Great!" she calls to him. "....what's the average girth of a carrot?"

Evaristo throws a marble at Hamish. "HEY! I am about to DISQUALIFY YOU for that."

Evaristo is, however, trying very hard not to laugh.

"Well this has been fun, but I think now I need to go home for a bath and a change of clothes," Zoey says, still grinning. After some quiet words to Nina, she departs.

Cocine checked willpower + teaching at difficulty 15, rolling 5 lower.

"Not all of us!" shouts Neilda, slouching into a seat next to Olivian. She looks at him sidelong. "What even /is/ this," she says. It's unclear if she means the drink or the party.

"We may."

Piccola takes the mug of whiskey, and takes a long, lingering sip of it. She sighs, and murmurs, "One only can guess at what the First Harlequin'll ask of me, but -- " Shrug. " -- it's supposed to be fun." The emphasis on 'supposed'. She takes another drink. Another long one. "Well -- " She shrugs again. " -- I suppose I'm ready for whatever."

"Including, whatever embarrassment."

Turn in line: Piccola

Piccola has rolled 1 12-sided dice: 2

Piccola has rolled 1 42-sided dice: 32

Piccola checked dexterity + economics at difficulty 15, rolling 16 higher.

Azova elbows Reve's arm at his protestation, her wry expression suggesting she's not entirely convinced of his statement there. "You should have seen what happened to the poor cucumber that was wielded at the Downtown Folly." she murmurs, eyeballing that stuffed cucumber on a stick until 'l'il pickle tickle' is said, and... that's when she starts to cough on her drink. "Good luck, Lady Piccola! Try to avoid things to do with pickles and cucumbers and... sizes." she shares as solemn advice for the poor woman. "I think a couple of drinks is called for. We might not injure each other on the dance floor. It'll be fine."

"I'm considering hiring a researcher of some description to figure out just that question, It's really rather bizarre no?" Olivian unwound hi legs and plopped down into a nearby chair, managing to avoid spilling any of the wine he had left.

Raymesin manages to keep his reaction to Hamish at a smirk, finishing his bandaging with Tanith and then setting the box aside to watch the rest of the fun.

Neilda's nose wrinkles. "Too sober for sailors," she says, judging. "But if you pretend everyone's sloshed it makes more sense." She's not sloshed, but she's booked a trip that way.

Tanith eyes her husband as he bandages her wrists together, her wineglass stuck between her palms. She squints at Raymesin. And continues to squint at him as she sips from her glass, carefully.

Olivian snorts, "So what I am hearing is that I need to switch to something harder and strap in?" The quicksilver grin is back, accompanied by a silvery chuckle in baritone, "Well, the plans I had for tomorrow were boring anyway."

"I really, really do not mind missing that," Reve counters, scoffing slightly and beginning the quite necessary rapid consumption of his drink. He lifts a hand in a salute as though sending Piccola off to battle when her turn arises. That drink there? Almost gone. Ah, but he overheard something. "See there?" he says, indicating Neilda to Azova with a gesture of his tumbler. "Pretending everyone is sloshed. We are not the only ones!" That isn't quite what was going on there, but he goes with it.

"Lady Piccola, spin the wheel!" Wheel is spun, cards are checked. "BRING OUT THE BOOKS!" he calls and a large pile of books are brought out. It is HIGH. "Lady Piccola, you shall BALANCE THE BOOKS across the ball. THrough the dance floor. And all over the place. And return them, unfallen!"

Turn in line: Sorrel

Sorrel has rolled 1 12-sided dice: 5

Sorrel has rolled 1 42-sided dice: 11

Sorrel checked command + leadership at difficulty 15, rolling 8 higher.

Anyone who knows her well will know that Neilda has a powerful sixth sense for when she's being gestured at with alcohol; she trains eyes briefly on Reve, flashes a smile, makes the same gesture back. There's a murmur to Olivian that is one-hundred-percent 'who's that', but not loud enough to hear. Loud enough to hear: "I see no flaw with that plan." The dimple is back, and here to stay.

... which is nobody.

Cocine steps up to the Wheel to make her spin, then pauses, held by the sight of Hamish parading around his MIGHTY CUCUMBER. She blinks, snorts out a laug, trying unsuccessfully to smother it behind one hand, then lets the Wheel spin! Still chuckling with an eye on the ARchlector as her task comes around. "Hm? Oh! Well then. This should be... hm." Moving to root around in the cart until she comes up with a few items. Turning, she looks around the area before approaching Raymesin with a grin. "May I borrow you, Master Raymesin? I hope you don't mind, but I'm to teach something to a Harlequin. Are you versed in either smithing or alchemy? I hope not! Come, though... its really quite simple." She urges him over to the small setup. "A simple perfume. A good nose is key. Start with a base scent. Something that appeals. Anything at all from our samples here. THen add in something you feel compliments it. Now set it over the candle, and be careful to watch! You musn't let it bubble, just warm. Now add some undercurrents to it. WHatever you like. Let the scents blend together..." Oh this is going to be terrible. Just terrible!

"Princess Sorrel, spin the wheel!" Spin wheel, check cards, task given; "Your Highness, you shall find five spiders in the room and manage to put them in a line, on a parade. GEntly, of course!"

"Balance the books!" Nina claps her hands together. "Oh. That's very clever. I am sure Death would approve of that." But that is certainly why Evaristo has his job. She oos slightly at the challenge of Sorrel's assigned task.

Piccola looks at Evaristo for a moment, lifting an eyebrow.

"Okay." She puts her mug of alcohol aside, and then walks over to the large pile of books. Tediously, she begins to stack one atop the other, and then begins her task with aplomb. Walking. Slowly. But with the books, what else is there to do? She does as she told, and continues until the task is done.

It may take a while.

Turn in line: Kritr

Kritr has rolled 1 12-sided dice: 9

Kritr has rolled 1 42-sided dice: 19

Somehow in the time that Neilda has looked elsewhere, Olivian has procured a bottle of deep amber liquid, which he is in the process of pouring into his glass, "Hmmm...?" He purrs, following her gaze before leaning back and whispering.

Kritr checked wits + haggling at difficulty 15, rolling 10 lower.

Symonesse is overheard praising Harlequins.

Nina is overheard praising Harlequins: I have so enjoyed the festival!

Sorrel takes a moment to gather her troops together. She picks the largest of the boldest of the spiders, and she invites them onto the hem of her dress, where they line up to walk proudly in a bold but tiny parade along the seasilk as she skips along cheerfully, turning the skirt to give them more space to walk.

Azova lifts up her drink in toast to Neilda and her obvious wisdom. "Okay, I can go with that." she decides, taking another drink of her rum. "We might be saved by needing to remain out of the way to help Lady Piccola, and to avoid stepping on any spiders that Princess Sorrel is trying to herd into a line." she murmurs. "But we will not escape the dance floor forever."

Raymesin goes to learn about alchemy. Apparently he likes the scent of musk as a base, but from there it all goes horribly wrong. Lavender seems to appeal, and from 'anything at all from the samples' he picks lemon, and honey to compliment. Then he accidentally lets it bubble, and when Cocine said 'undercurrents' he thought that meant 'currants'. It's an... interesting scent.

"Lord Kritr Clearlake, you are our LAST contestant - and everyone's doing so WONDERFULLY, you are such an amazing crowd." Kritr spins the wheel, and the last participant gets his task; "Lord Kritr - you must WITTILY figure out how to MARKET what RAYMESIN just crafted!"

Hamish is overheard praising Harlequins: And a good time was had by all. Until they died. X.X

Tanith looks incredibly amused as Cocine works on teach her husband alchemy, observing with interest as he works on making a perfume?

Kritr goes over to Raymesin and holds out his hand for him to hand over the lemon-currrant spread.

Raymesin hands over the vial of 'scent'. "Good luck," he tells the Lord.

Nina takes skull circlet with gold leaves and red garnets from Festival of Death prize bag.

Raymesin is overheard praising Harlequins.

Nina puts skull circlet with gold leaves and red garnets in Festival of Death prize bag.

Evaristo is overheard praising Harlequins: FESTIVAL OF DEATH - THE BEST EVER

Gianna is overheard praising Harlequins: The Harlequins have put on a festival with enough incredibly varied events to appeal to everyone in Arx. Also, they have wonderful taste in musicians.

Whatever Olivian says brightens Neilda's features a good deal; she nods nicely, and offers her glass over (where... did the empty one go?) before course-correcting, finishing it off, and then offering it over for a pour. She gives Azova a sunshiny smile, too. "Drink or drink," she says. "If this doesn't do me in, I'm going for a swim after this."

Evaristo is overheard praising Nina.

Tanith is overheard praising Harlequins.

Evaristo is overheard praising Piccola.

Evaristo is overheard praising Raymesin.

Tanith is overheard praising Raymesin: Did you -see- what he was wearing?

With wide eyes at what Raymesin has created, Cocine clears her throat and starts to shift bawards to hopefully fade back into the crowd. How Kritr will market it.. well.. this should be interesting!

Aindre is overheard praising Harlequins: Graysons for Death, #1 enthusiasts. Go Harlequins!

Kritr sniffs the 'jam' and shrugs. He scans the room for someone he knows and failing utterly goes over to the Queen Symonesse. "You want this?" He bluntly inquires. "Only one silver. Or... I'll wear it for twenty silver." That's not exactly selling the item is it.

Cocine is overheard praising Harlequins.

Hamish looks from Raymesin's creation to Kritr and back, "Once knew a man who made a million silver selling buckets of farts. How hard could this be?"

Olivian topped her up with what seems to some form of sweet hard-liquor, fortified mead? Who knows, certainly not Olivian. "Given the heat, that sounds like a wise choice at least in concept if not in Praxis." He rubs his chin between finger and thumb, casting an amused look in Neilda's direction.

Nina takes skull circlet with gold leaves and red garnets from Festival of Death prize bag.

Reve's tumbler is empty! He looks for a moment like he might toss it aside (worry not, it isn't heading Neilda-ward) but after cutting a sidelong look to his companion he refrains from doing such a thing. No, very politely, he sets it to a passing server's tray. "Who needs a dance floor?" he asks Azova, and with freed hand, she's snared and twirled in place. Yes, he's definitely going for that sloshed ruse and absolutely partially succeeding. "Well done, cousin!" he calls to Piccola.

Symonesse had been dancing, so, when Kritr approaches, she stops for a moment, blinks at the man, considers his proposal, and then counter-offers, "I'll give you a thousand silver if you make Evaristo wear it."

Kritr; takes off at a run toward Evaristo.

It seems that everything is chaos in the ballroom - there's dancing and people doing all sorts of silly things. There is a LOT of laughter. And Kritr's final part? It sends the crowd into a fit. Evaristo bends over and cries from it, finally able to just let all that laughter OUT. "Oh my godess," he breathes, wiping tears. "Wait... NOOO!" he protests, and he looks for something to hide behind. "THE WINNERS ARE - NINA, first place, RAYMESIN, second place, and LADY PICCOLA, third place! Pick your prizes - ahhh!" He shoots off, leaping off the stage.

Evaristo checked dexterity + athletics at difficulty 15, rolling 23 higher.

Raymesin gets a jeweled spider pin from Festival of Death prize bag.

Lethe is overheard praising Nina.

Lethe is overheard praising Raymesin.

Lethe is overheard praising Piccola.

Quietly -- serenely, even -- Piccola continues to walk with the books balanced.

Don't mind her. She continues around the party area with her books, concentrating on them, cutting out all distractions. And she seems pretty good at it. Even when people call her name, she continues.

Until she is done.

Prince Aindre can't help but laugh at Kritr and his strangeness, then the Queen's counter-offer. The Grayson outright loses his composure though whenever Evaristo announces the winners and goes screaming off the stage however. He calls out, "Don't go down without a fight!". Then manages to look a little like oh, maybe he shouldn't be encouraging that. Ahem. Besides, he's dancing still. Or doing his best with what's left of his composure.

Piccola gets replendent pair of hairpins ornamented with brilliant ruby wheels from Festival of Death prize bag.

Nope, not expecting that. ".. what do you mean who needs a..." *squeak*, as she's twirled in place. "... dance floor. /Really/, I know you haven't had that much to drink." Azova accuses, looking quite like she's going to laugh rather than scold actually. "Ah! Well done, Lady Tessere." Her own glass is still in her hand, so she tips it a little towards Piccola for that third place finish before downing the rest of it and handing the empty glass to Reve. He can put it down for her, right? "Please."

Tanith has left the a temporary blue bench.

When you tell a man Kritr's size to get someone to 'wear something' the first thought is to make that happen by force. So if Kritr can get close enough he'll dump Raymesin's concoction directly into Evaristo's hair, catching him by the collar if need be. The only sign that he takes any joy in the act is the extra swipe he gives grinding the scent in with his palm.

Gianna sets her glass aside so as to be able to applaud the lunging run and Evaristo's leap. Well done.

Tanith applauds and stands, whistling shrilly as Raymesin gets second place. When she overhears Kritr and his counter-offer from the queen, the subsequent fleeing of Evaristo has Tanith in tears, laughing.

Hamish takes Festival of Death prize bag.

Neilda gives the drink a sniff, shrugs, has a thorough taste. Does not hate it, if her face can be trusted. "You're /awfully/ overdressed for a swim," she comments to Olivian. Her eyes track Kritr, and she looks very much like she would like for him to succeed - the posture of someone watching a match of some brutal game, tipped forward, on the edge of her seat.

Nina gets a circlet from the prize bag... and immediately puts it on, smiling happily at this. It fits nicely over her veil and adds just an additional touch of gloom to the ensamble. "I'll have a whole new Death outfit I think soon. The skull motif actually is cheerful, isn't it?" She looks at Hamish. "If you think about it, they are ALWAYS smiling."

"No, get out of the way, oh shit," Evaristo says. It's not easy to run through a throng of drunk people. He thinks he gets away but... there's suddenly running into a wall. A wall called Kritr, who grabs his collar and nearly yanks him off his feet. "Arrchkkkrrr," Evaristo gurgles, and then a large mitt smears this 'perfume' into his very messy hair that now is also somewhat greasy, and... with an interesting smell.

Raymesin cheers the winner, and the woman in third place - but the biggest cheer of his evening is for Kritr. "Come on, man, catch 'im!" And then Kritr does, and Raymesin breaks into a round of applause and floor-stamping approval.

Gianna rises from the bench as well, smoothing her skirt as she stands and giving one yellow silk rose at the neckline of her dress a little tweak once she's upright. "Do have a good evening," she remarks. "I ought to be leaving."

Gianna has left the a temporary blue bench.

"It's just Krit." the ... average-sized for a Northman growls before letting Evaristo go.

Olivian shrugged, "The last time I got into swimming-ready attire during a party there were some heated discussions about etiquette." The tall sword shrugged and took a deep of the drink with a wrinkle of his nose, "Who even brought this...?" He wondered aloud or to Neilda, it was unclear.

Lethe claps for the winners and gives a last look at the bucket of marbles with a sigh. She stands and leaves in with a look of frustration.

Neilda glances sidelong at Olivian, looking around for the bottle - and there's a dawning look of horror. "Did /you/ just /insult/ the /queen's/ liquor?" Oh her gods, how could he.

Evaristo stumbles back as he is released. He touches his hair carefully, then sniffs his fingers, and he just groans. "Is it wrong to wash your hair in blessed water? IS there water here?!" he asks around, but looks at Kritr with a certain admiration. "NOW who wanna dance with me?!" He laughs, shaking his head and mooches back in to mingle never the less.

Lethe has left the a temporary yellow bench.

3 Tyde Houseguard, 2 Redwood Initiates leave, following Lethe.

Kritr has joined the a dancefloor area.

Evaristo gets a silver and crimson coin stamped with Death's sigil from a Harlequin's bag of collectables.

Olivian's brows knit, "Hm. That doesn't sound like me, must have been someone else." He tossed the bottle up to reposition it in his palm, peering down at it. "Anyway, it'll do. The last three days have been all wine, so the change of pace is nice at least."

Kritr returns to Queen Symonesse's side, hand outstretched, not for silver, but to keep from getting the musky scent on his furs any further. "Your will is done, Highness."

"What do you mean, Lady Azova?" Reve retorts, making certain to lean back, take an entirely too wide step backwards, and then to the side. It's a special sort of dance, that. It also allows him to set her empty glass down at a side table. Once this is accomplished he returns to her, adopting a much more considerate and formal stance. Maybe she'll get her dance after all.

"Or grimacing in agony," says Hamish cheerfully. "But all the skeletons I've ever talked to have been downright jolly." With the games over Hamish starts back up to the altar and glances to Sir Daniel who expressively rolls his eyes before AHEMing as loud as his bulky Oathlander body can manage. Then AHEMs a few more times for good measure. When Hamish has most of the attention of the room, which is after Evaristo is slathered with goo and people start to back away. "Friends! Thank you for coming to the finale ball. So thus ends the Festival of Death! I thank every single one of you, and countless others, for making the contests, the parties, the performances and the general threats to human, elf and squirrel life and limb a tremendous success." He lifts a glass and gestures to the Death tapestries around him. "Life is just a party, friends. And parties aren't meant to last. But! Don't worry! No one needs to go home! The drink will continue on 'til the morning comes, for as the Festival of Death ends, so begins the Good Harvest!" Hamish nods and new tapestries roll down, these featuring scenes of farming, scenes of hunting, scenes of trees covered in orange and gold leaves, and scenes of man and women drinking copiously. "So enjoy this week as we celebrate the Triad of Creation, thanking Petrichor for the harvest, Lagoma for the change in seasons and Mangata for the fucking beer!" He lifts his drink high, splashing it all over himself and Sir Daniel, the quaffs deeply before tossing it behind him. "Thank you!"

Neilda grins, leans aside to nudge Olivian with her shoulder; she shakes her head, murmuring something. She lifts her glass in toast to Hamish's words, and finishes her cup.

Symonesse can't help but laugh as Kritr chases Evaristo around to apply the perfume or jam or whatever it is to the Harlequin. She even cheers for him a little bit when he succeeds. When Kritr returns for his reward, she graciously nods for one of the her guards to pay the man and says with a sunny smile, "Well done!"

"Here here, and cheers!" Nina says, shouting hooray to Hamish's toast to the gods. She does not have a drink in hand, so she immedaitely grabs a glass of wine just to raise it high.

"And a toast to the DEATHSPEAKERS - the prizes here today were donations from them!" Evaristo calls out. He looks chuffed seeing NIna wearing that circlet.

Tanith is still laughing, but manages to applaud with the rest.

Kritr divides the purse roughly in half and sends one half away to Evaristo. The other half he sends to the donation box. "I would like to talk about spiders." He says to the Queen as he turns back. "Frost spiders." The whole reason he is here and participated, so he could say those words.

Olivian laughed quietly, leaning over to whisper back, swirling the vestiges of his drink with one hand.

At last, after her Herculean task, Piccola sets aside her books.

She then reclaims her mug, takes a sip from it, and then goes to claim her prize from the bag, as indicated. From her place at the edge of the dance floor, she goes about just watching for now, listening and drinking. Reve and Azova are doing their thing, and, well, she seems content to do hers.

Very content indeed.

Azova tosses Reve a look; he knows exactly what she means. Before more of a retort is made though, he is performing that contorted move of his. And Hamish is toasting the end of the Festival. "Well done, Harlequins and Deathspeakers." A cheer of encouragement is offered for the passing of one festival to the celebration of another while she manages a formal pose for that dance she's finally going to get.

Nina is overheard praising Hamish.

Raymesin too applauds Hamish's words - once he's finished applauding Kritr's athleticism - then settles in for a night of ale and good company to be mostly spent in the Memorial Gardens.

Symonesse blinks at little at Kritr's request and glances around a bit before she tilts her head at the man, "What do you wish to know about frost spiders?"

Neilda is overheard praising Harlequins: Great party!

Kritr ticks off his questions on large fingers. "One. Are they real. Two. How do I find them. Three. Can they be trained. Four. How do I train them. Five. Maybe this should be two, how do I make sure they don't eat me."

Korka calls out to Symonesse, "He wants to train them, not squish them," raising her glass as if she has just said something exceedingly helpful, she then downs it and following Hamish's lead tosses her mug to the side as she stands.

Azova is overheard praising Harlequins.

Tanith finds a perch on Raymesin's knee after he finds a spot to settle, a pitcher of ale in hand.

Olivian is overheard praising Harlequins.

Reve is overheard praising Harlequins.

"Valuable," Neilda says, with warm approval - who knows what Olivian said that garnered /that/. "So are you /really/ Sword, or was Thea screwing with me again?"

"They sound cold to me.", Aindre helpfully volunteers on the matter of frost spiders, the one observation he can utter with extreme confidence when it comes to winter-dwelling arachnids.

Evaristo is overheard praising Harlequins.

Hamish hops down from the altar, gives the Lord of the Deep Woods, Our Lady of Change and the Lady of Good Seas and Calm Waters each the bow they deserve, then heads over toward the others while snapping up another beer.

Back to list