Blackshore Family Luncheon
Oct. 25, 2020, noon
Arx - Ward of House Thrax - Redreef Estate - Redreef Library
Comments and Log
Gehenna gets a commemorative Blackshore coin from a simple cloth pouch.
Trueth drops Lord Darian Redreef.
\\Throwing open the doors to allow entry, Dycard offers a polite handshake and a nod - sometimes a bow where appropriate - as he welcomes the luncheons guests. To some he murmured some kind of greeting or joke but to all he pointed out the array of food and drink against one wall and the seating available around the various tables. With some amusement he ensured to point out the Baroness Redreef with unerring accuracy to each guest, "Our gracious host - she's the real one to be thanking here," he would observe before turning to his next guest and allowing those interested to filter by the liquor cabinet to obtain their coin.
3 Ivory Shields arrives, following Patrizio.
"Lord Blackshore," Gehenna says entering at an amble and giving her fellow a warm half smile. "I've been looking forward to this, and it's always wonderful to see our houses cooperating." She inclines her head to him as she enters and yes her eyes definitely do go to the liquor first. Although since this is her own house, it's quite possible she's already had a bit.
Aella gets a commemorative Blackshore coin from a simple cloth pouch.
The 'gracious host' indicated by Lord Dycard is Baroness Ember Redreef, who stands near the door, fulfilling the obligations of a hostess and looking just... so... thrilled. To those who have met the so-called Bloody Baroness before, nothing about her seems particularly amiss. To those who are related to her? She's being downright /personable/, by Ember standards. Those who have never met Ember before might wonder why the hostess of the event is /glaring/ at everyone.
Ember's ladies-in-waiting are dressed identically and rushing around the party as it forms up, making sure that everything is just-so. Ember herself, wearing a gown that's no less elegant for the way it reveals numerous battlefield-earned scars on her body, focuses for the moment on greeting people, politely but glarefully.
Ian enters with his wife this time, or more or less so. They're walking side by side, but Ian's habit of watching his own feet when he walks makes him look, even when walking right next to someone, like he's walking alone. He looks up and nods to Dycard, and then Ember, as they step inside. "Lord Dycard. Baroness."
Aedric stands at the opposite side of the doorway and greets those who Dycard and Ember cannot, whether this be due to volume or aversion. He is certainly not the sociable sort but gives a more personable and approachable impression than the Bloody Baroness.
Patrizio comes in from without, with the faintest look of disorientation - it's clear he's still, after a month, learning his way about the city. But there's a warm-enough smile to Ember - despite the glare - and an inclination of his head to Dycard as he's coming in with the throng. "Thank you for the invite, once more," he says, as he's looking about at some of the familiar faces.
Patrizio takes a commemorative Blackshore coin from a simple cloth pouch.
"It is lovely to see you both," Zoey adds after Ian, her expression warm and bright like the spring days that have returned at last.
Desma arrives to the library, her hands knotted in the small of her back as her loose-limbed stride carries her forward. She doesn't make for an imposing figure, being of average height, but she carries herself with that air of confidence that's born of someone who's comfortable within their skin. She helps herself to one of the coins, then heads towards the host and hostess. She gives a small half-bow, right forearm folded across her middle. "Baroness Redreef. Lord Dycard." Her eyes flick to Aedric and there's a nod of recognition given his way, having met him at the Magnotta Mansion a night or two prior.
Desma gets a commemorative Blackshore coin from a simple cloth pouch.
Trueth's entrance is marked by a small Redreef lord running in first, candy squeezed tight in each fist. "Lord Darian! Lord Darian Redreef! You come back here!" Trueth pants after him, looking as though she's chased him down the halls.
"NO, MOM!" The toddler screams as he hides under a table, looking around for Ember's dog. Trueth has fixed her makeup, done her hair, but it can't hide the fact that she's looking tired around the eyes. One might guess why. She leans in and kisses Ember on the cheek softly before smiling at Dycard. "I'm sorry for making a splash like this. He thinks he's a grown up. A petulant one. Thank you for having us, Lord Dycard."
Making his way into the library, Romulius offers his brother a nod of greeting and a clasp of his hand. He then turns to address Ember, a polite bow and a warm smile offered. "Baroness Redreef. Thank you for the offer to host - Dycard certainly needs all the assistance he can get." A nod is offered to Aedric as Romulius makes his way to collect a drink, electing to bypass the pouch of coins for now.
Patrizio puts a commemorative Blackshore coin in Leviathan Adorned Coin Case.
Aella enters the Redreef's home as she looks around "i hope it is alright that I join you, I fear I have no invite." she says her blue orbs shimmering under her copper tresses.
Ian, Zoey, and Patrizio all earn nods from the Bloody Baroness. "Welcome," she says, to one and all. Of the three, perhaps Zoey has the best shot of recognizing that this is Ember making an effort to not come across like a raging bitch. (She's maybe succeeded in removing the "raging.") When Trueth comes up and kisses Ember on the cheek, the Baroness reaches around her to give her something like a hug, touching her gently between the shoulderblades.
"Welcome, Lord Romulius." Ember's glance turns to Aella next: "If Lord Dycard considers you welcome, then you are welcome in my home. However... excuse me a moment." Ember turns to look at the toddler-concealing table. "Lord Darian Redreef," she says, with a firmness that shows exactly how much Ember was trying to be personable a moment ago, by sheer contrast. "Come here /this instant/."
Ember checks command and intimidation at daunting. Ember is marginally successful.
As she passes the hosts at the door, Gehenna makes sure to give her Baroness a little curtsy. "It's good to see the library get used for something," she murmurs on her way by.
A drink is fetched! That's about the time the rest of the guests begin to arrive, and she turns around to survey them as they come in. She catches Patrizio's eye from across the room and raises her glass in a friendly greeting, smiles at Trueth, and is distracted from both briefly when Darian scuttles under the table. She frowns and peers down, as if trying to decide whether to get involved in this.
Ember's command puts a stop to that. She shakes her head and begins to wend her way back over to the knot of guests near the door.
"My Lord and Lady Kennex," he offered in greeting, smiling politely at the couple as he handles his flow of guests. Grinning at the young lordling's entrance, Dycard offers a shrug to Trueth as he waved a hand dismissively, "Nonsense - thank you for having -us-, my lady. If you ever wish for him to get a taste of man's work i'm sure Orrick can find a berth for him to spend a night on The Intrepid," he joked as Ember handled the outburst. "My lady - I fear we haven't met, Dycard Blackshore at your service," he offered in greeting to Aella, "Of course you're more than welcome, though I don't have a coin case made for you. I can have one mailed at some point if you'd like."
Maxene, the steadfast ladies maid, 3 Thrax Guards, 2 Thrax Elite Guards arrive, following Alarissa.
Patrizio chuckles as he notices Gehenna's glance, and he's moving in that direction when Ember's voice clearly draws the ear. A few seconds of those jade eyes looking about, and then he's aware of the young figure that's clearly underfoot somewhere... and so he's being more careful as he makes his way to collect a glass and be conversationally friendly.
Ian passes through the door and... doesn't look totally sure what to do with himself. There's no liquor cabinet here for him to park himself at and tend bar.
Aella smiles a little as she looks over to Dycard and she smiles "Hello, I am Countess Aella Ravenseye." she says quietly in introduction, "oh there is a case?" she wonders and she nods "I had heard about that, and just came to see.." a pause of her words as she draws a deep breath "thank you for having me. And then there is the Raven, who chides "Get the Booty!" as it attacks the bag of coins. Rolling her eyes at the Sea-bird she chuckles "sorry for her."
"Lady Desma Magnotta," Desma concludes her introduction to Ember and Dycard, then wanders further into the room. She head, its has to be said, for the food and drink, and collects a glass of red wine from the table. It's over the rim of that class as it's lifted that she spots the familiar side profile of Romulius and she artlessly sidles his way. A nudge of her elbow to his. "Hello. Again." Hopefully he's not a one to startle easily.
Trueth looks around with a fine red sheen on her cheeks, clearly embarrassed. As he's admonished by the Bloody Baroness, Darian hunkers down underneath the table a bit more before slowly crawling out from the table and approaching Ember, looking over at Trueth. "Mama?" He asks, all innocence quite suddenly.
Trueth shakes her head at him. "Gehenna," Trueth says, smiling at the woman. "I'm glad to see you right now." She smiles at Dycard. "Thank you again though. You're so kind, Lord Dycard. And... perhaps when he's a bit older, but in the meantime, I think the Baroness has a short leash on my child. One I cannot seem to hold!"
Introductions made, Zoey leads Ian to a seat near the table where the bottles have been laid out for guests to easily access. "This is quite a turnout!" she notes.
"There was a good sized group last time, too," Ian remarks to Zoey, looking a little more in his element now that he's selecting a bottle of whiskey from which to pour himself a drink.
Both Desma and Romulius' nods are returned as they pass into the library. A cautious glance was then tossed toward the toddler in hiding. The poor boy did not appear to have yet drawn their host's fury, and for this Aedric was thankful. Attention again finds itself upon the main hallway, prepared to greet any potential stragglers.
"It's always a pleasure, Prince Patrizio," Gehenna says as he makes his way into the room. "Care for a drink?" She eyes Trueth and adds, "You look like you could use one, too."
As Zoey and Ian settle at the drinks table, Gehenna curtsies to them as well. "Lady Zoey, it's good to see you again. Lord Ian, I'm sorry we had no chance to speak last time, I'm glad to see you've returned."
Ember gives Gehenna a mild smirk-ish look at the comment about the library. 'Smirk-ISH' because she doesn't really move her mouth at all. It's all in the eyes.
When Darian approaches, Ember leans down -- carefully, because she's in a nice gown. "Come here," Ember says, less harshly, holding her arms out to pick Darian up. She's a strong lady. One toddler isn't too much of a burden. Physically, anyway. "The dog is outside, enjoying springtime. Your place is in here, with your family, and their guests," Ember says to the child quietly, whether or not he really understands the lecture or why he's receiving it. "You are a Redreef, Darian. You must appear united with your family." Maybe Ember says that last bit a bit louder, and MAYBE she's looking at Gehenna, sort of.
Romulius turns his eyes from Darian's antics to the source of the elbow, raising his glass for a sip of whiskey before answering. "Lady Magnotta. Should I be checking for poisons here, too? Congratulations, again, on your appointment." His eyes scan the library and its guests as the elder of the Blackshore brothers looks to take stock of who else might be in attendance.
"And you, Lady Gehenna," Zoey replies with a nod. "I trust you have been well. What has kept you occupied since last we spoke?"
Alarissa's slipping in, a glance to the shelves of the library and with a smile on her face. Entourage left at the door, she's making her way in and getting a lay of the land to who all is present.
"Do I seem like the kind to turn a drink down?" asks Patrizio with an easy smile, and the inclination of his head to Trueth as well. "It seems almost de rigueur when in such situations, and not just as a playful social lubricant." Zoey gets an inclination of his head as well.
The elder Blackshore's back straightens as Alarissa enters the library. "Your Highness," he mutters, gaze dipping respectfully.
Casting his glaze about the room, Dycard lets out a barely perceptible sigh as he clasps his hands behind his back and rocks on his heel while standing near Ember. He flashes a smile slightly as Alarissa slips in and offers a bow, "Your Highness - you're too kind for gracing us with your company again."
"Thank you," Desma says to Romulius. There's no hint of snark to her tone, and she takes a mouthful of wine from her glass before turning to survey the rest of the room along with him. "Apart from your family, do you know anyone here? I'm embarrassed to say that I do not. I've not stepped much outside of my own ward since arriving in the city. Perhaps you could introduce me to some faces?" Her eyes flick to Alaraissa when she's addressed, and her voice lowers with the murmur of a question.
Desma mutters, "Like who ... that, for ... ... ... her Highness, and ... feel I should know her, but sad ... ... I do not."
Ian nods to Gehenna, but with Zoey here, he's happy to hand (shove) all the socializing duties over to her. He executes a half-bow over his cane when Alarissa makes her appearance.
"Lord Aedric. I see a delightful turn out once again. I look forward to when Thrax can host one as well. Libraries are the themes?" There's a dip of her head to him and then to Dycard. The same for Ian when she spots him out of the corner of her eyes, the tilt and dip for Ian and his wife. "That and it would be dreadful to not ensure a complete set of coins for the cross halls when we keep the current one on display with it's case."
Romulius mutters, "Princess Alarissa Thrax, Princess-Consort of ... She is Prince Victus's ... and a good ... to ... ..."
Trueth chuckles at Patrizio's assessment. "Oh, believe me. We certainly need all the spirits, liquor, wines, and whatever else we can get today. At least I know I do." She looks toward Gehenna and nods as if in a brief bit of solidarity with Gehenna. Trueth starts pouring herself a drink, while Darian, in Ember's arms looks at his aunt very solemnly. He nods slowly and gives Ember his candy to dispose of, all with sticky hands. "Yes, Aunt Emmie," he says quietly.
It's debatable if he knows what he's really agreeing to. But he does know that he doesn't like seeing Aunt Emmie being /stern/ with him.
Zoey dips her head to the princess as well, then looks to Gehenna while she awaits the other lady's reply. She lifts a glass of red wine to her lips and sips it.
"That," Gehenna says to Patrizio, "is just called wisdom." She offers him his drink, a little grin flashing across her face - more and fuller than the diplomatic smile. "When there's so much on offer, it would be criminal not to sample."
This comes conveniently as Ember is giving Darian his lecture - and her last words float over to Gehenna by the table. The smile gets a little tighter. Her glass suddenly gets a /lot/ emptier. "There's plenty to keep e busy, My Lady," she continues to Zoey with a laugh. "I've discovered just how much work a ministerial position can be in the winter, even when the roads are blocked and shipping slows. /Especially/ when that's the case. And yourself? I hope you've found something more interesting to occupy your time than I have."
"I must direct your inquiry toward Lord Dycard Blackshore, Your Highness. He is architect behind these gatherings. And the Baroness Redreef has agreed to host on our behalf," Aedric replies, gesturing toward nephew. "Your presence is nonetheless welcome, and I am certain he would be honored to coordinate with an emissary of House Thrax."
Ember seems undeterred by candy -- she takes it and then hands it off to one of her ladies-in-waiting, and holds her hand out for a different lady-in-waiting to wipe some of the stickiness away. Handmaiden, in a literal sense. Now armed with a passionate toddler, Ember nods to Dycard and begins to circulate a bit. The scarred Bloody Baroness carrying around a child is... not her usual way of going about things, and yet, it does succeed a bit in either softening the Baroness's image or making one terrified for a child's welfare, depending.
"This is Lord Ian Kennex, and his wife, Lady Zoey Kennex," Ember says to Darian, as she approaches the pair. "Lord Ian, Lady Zoey, this is Lord Darian Redreef. Lord Ian, the liquor is off in the corner -- I believe there's a bottle of pepper vodka at the ready." Ember lifts her brow gently as if to say to Ian, 'go for it.' Then, Ember turns toward Alarissa: "This is Princess Alarissa Thrax, Lord Darian. Do you know how to greet a Princess...?"
"I hesitate to call it wisdom, if only because that makes me sound like I've far more experience... aside perhaps from the mistake of too many occasions where I've not availed myself of it." Patrizio's green eyes dance merrily for those few moments at the reactions his comment get from Trueth and Gehenna, and he accepts the drink gladly, before there's a look about the room once more. "Which gives me the question of what today's challenge shall be."
Aella looks over the party and she dose seem a little lost, she moves a bit to the back of the room as she watches those mull about. Her eyes flicker as she wrangles her bird from stealing all of the coins. Ian's mention of whiskey catches her attention "do you sell it?"
"When I am not handling the house's financial situation I am engaged in either fashion or research," Zoey tells Gehenna, expression brightening once more. "One of my cousins has been researching Gloria recently, so I have been aiding him with that, but I do a bit of personal research as well." When Ember brings Darian by for introductions, she nods her head and gives him an encouraging smile.
Griffin slips in, late. He can't really be incognito, but he tries!
Ian holds up his glass to show Ember that he managed to find the alcohol. His gaze tends to skim over Darian the way that it skims over pets, noting that the child is there and then moving on.
"Wisdom comes with practice," Gehenna says amiably to Patrizio. "I suppose the first step is always knowing when one hasn't had enough practice and endeavouring to get some more!" She is with a little group around the liquor, including Ember, Trueth, Patrizio, Ian and Zoey, and looks cheerful, for the most part.
She leans slightly in as Zoey speaks, nodding. "Do you design fashion yourself, then?" she asks. "You msut be quite busy this time of year if that's the case, even without the research to distract you - or perhaps it's the other way around." She raises a hand to Aella as she approaches. "Countess Ravenseye, is that what I heard? The whiskey is all free here, I can assure you."
And then she spots Griffin by the door. She studies him for a moment, takig in his appearance and expression, then smiles and beckons him over.
Trueth looks at Patriozio and laughs. "Today's challenge? Oh, must there be a challenge involved?" She asks him. "And I believe that we've all had experiences where we've gotten carried away with drink or perhaps not had enough." Trueth winks at Zoey when her son is taken over by Ember. She takes stock of the rest of the crowd and starts to blush, as if she hadn't realized that the room had filled up - or that so many bodies were in it when she arrived, since she was distracted. "Oh my. Yes, I am going to need more alcohol. What sort of challenges do you speak, Prince Patrizio?"
Darian is pressed against Ember quickly and he stays that way. Bashfully, almost - as if he takes after his mother. "Hello Lord and Lady," Darian manages to Ian and Zoey, but he's got a touch of clumsiness to his speech. Batting his lashes at Alarissa, he smiles at her. "Hello, princess!"
Slard, a whip-scarred bodyguard arrives, following Cornelius.
Allows his head to list to the side as he begins to drift about the room, smiling and offering some attempt at polite conversation as he seems to maneuver about on autopilot. He stops near Ian and Zoey to fix himself a drink on his route about the room before drifting toward the center of the room.
Aella has joined the an intricately detailed map table.
After a hushed whisper to Desma, Romulius gives a nod of confirmation. Electing to lead her towards the drink table, he gives a bow of greeting towards Alarissa and a nod afterwards to the rest gathered about. "Your Highness. My lords, ladies. If I might introduce Lady Desma Magnotta? She is new to the city and was kind enough to host Lord Aedric and I at a dinner arranged by Count Domonico."
Patrizio grins a bit to Trueth when she's asking it of him in return. "I believe the last luncheon had Queen of Games going on in the midst of it, if I remember correctly." Which he seems fairly sure of, as if he'd not been too inebriated to have missed it, though he also seems to be of the demeanour that he's regretting not having tried his hand at it. "So I figured it was worth venturing the guess about another such." Gehenna's quip about knowing when one needs more practice gets a playful, if knowing, chuckle.
"Conflict of schedules, though things changed, kept Thrax from hosting. But Redreef rises and I am delighted for that. Lord Dycard and I are already planning. He does your house great honour." She stands beside Aedric, Alaricite arm and real arm when Ember approaches and blue eyes settle on the child in Embers arm. His greeting is met with a smile, and a dip of her head to the little lordling. "Lord Darion. That is a good greeting. And look at you. So handsome. Bigger than my Eleyna. Baroness, I shall be sure to bring my youngest three over to play." Romulius is offering intrroductions and there's more dipping of her head to the newly introduced woman.
Desma spots Aella looking a little lost, and gestures to the table of drinks where she's led. "Come get some drink..." she mouths to the countess, before snapping her head around at the introduction. "Your Highness," she greets with another formal bow. She's not wearing a dress, so curtsies aren't the order of the day, and her smile is warm for anyone else to whom she's introduced.
Aella smiles a little as she stands from her table and she moves to walk forward to the table where the drinks are "Thank you Lady." she says quietly to the other.
Ah yes! Alcohol. Griffin procures himself a drink (wine) and became just another 'party goer' in the crowd. Even if there isn't a crowd other than family! Gehenna chose then to beckon him. "Ah yes, my dear." His smile is half-cocked.
Two men enter the grandly decorated library; one a bit more hulking than the other. The larger man, Slard, lingers nearest the cloaked man a moment before the hood was drawn back on the cloak he wore atop his ironwool coat. Lord Blackshore turns to Slard, beckoning him away with a dismissive hand. At any protest, Cornelius bit back a dissatisfied grunt, trying on his own to walk although it was rather labored and forced. With head held high, he managed to take decent steps to the cache of drinks where he stares contemplatively at a choice for the afternoon. Something heavy, for sure.
Ian has faded pretty effectively into the background, out of the natural circulation of people, drink in hand. His electric blue eyes follow Cornelius' entrance into the room.
Gehenna has joined the a sideboard table set with red linen.
The arrival of Cornelius draws a look of quiet disdain from Romulius, who immediately lifts his glass to finish the drink inside. It is quickly replaced, and by the time that Cornelius manages to reach the table Romulius has managed to clear his face of the scowl. "Father. It is good to see you up and about." His flat tone does little to assure the sincerity of the sentiment.
Zoey nods to Gehenna. "I try to stay busy always, but with the Eclipse of Mirrors upon us I try to create something special," she says. "I think my ensemble for the ball is nearly complete, and I look forward to showing it around the city. Will you be in attendance?"
Milling around the map table as if waiting for a moment, Dycard's brow creased as he regarded the two latest arrivals. When Cornelius reveals himself the younger Blackshore brother blanches only slightly before his face screws up in a scowl and he begins to drift toward his father with a stiff back, "Father - how gracious of you to join us. I'm surprised you've condescended to join our little luncheon," he quipped with mock formality and a cold severity.
"Queen of Games?" Trueth asks. "I am unfamiliar. Party games - well, I was never much good at them." Trueth looks about at the newcomers and then to Patrizio. "I'm sensing a bit of drama," she murmurs before sipping her drink and taking a seat. She looks at her son and makes sure he's behaving himself - but he's with Ember, so that's taken care of. "Prince Patrizio, besides drinking and party games, what else interests you?" At the introduction of Lady Desma, Trueth sends her a warm smile - if not an incredibly shy, fleeting one that last .5 seconds.
Here, Alarissa looks to the door and then to Aedric, murmuring.
"Lady Desma," Gehenna says with a nod to the woman. "It's good to meet you. Welcome to the Redreef house in Arx." She smiles affably, turning the smile on Aella as she gets a drink and sits down. "You as well, Countess."
"I'm curious as well," she adds to Patrizio. "Queen of Games was quite fun last time. You missed out." She winks. "Maybe this time it will be something more to your tastes."
As Griffin approaches she turns to look up at him from her seat, shaking her head. "I heard you'd arrived in the city. Then I thought perhaps someone was pulling my leg, since I hadn't seen you. Lord Griffin Redreef, my friends," she adds to the company at the table. "My baby brother."
While she speaks to Zoey, Gehenna's eyes skate now and then to the Blackshores, as they have their tense confab; she doesn't look so much like a rubbernecker as a fellow sufferer, one participant in constant family drama witnessing another separate sort at work. But she replies without hesitation to Zoey. "Sadly not. My family and I had other plans that day. Though now I regret not having the chance to see the outfit you've designed for it."
Cornelius Cornelius glanced to Romulius for a moment; his eyes rather sullen and face haggard. He had the decency to freshen up from whatever stupor he had dragged himself from through it seems whatever malady follows him continued to do so to present a cloud over his head. He bowed his head lightly, choosing a rather dark whiskey, "Romulius; it is good to see these gatherings still happening. We have appearances to keep and inways to make. New Hope shall not rise to greatness if we are docile like a waning tide." A pass of his gaze was brought back to Dycard; the sire's movements slow and calculated, "Yes, I had thought against it. Though, bodily needs are required and I was feeling just bright enough to come and pay my respect; for the family." He rose his glass to Dycard, taking a small sip. Slard then came, offering the Lord an oaken cane that he use as a support whilst standing.
Ember Redreef, Bloody Baroness, Princess of Parties, and so forth, is wandering around the party in a fabulous gown and carrying someone else's child. (Literally. Not in a surrogate way, c'mon.) With a muted, tiny smile toward Alarissa, Ember says, "I think that Lady Trueth would enjoy that quite a bit, Your Highness. Redreef is thus far a bit slow in... multiplying," Ember says, choosing her words carefully, perhaps because she has a toddler clinging to her neck. "Lord Darian would benefit from the playmates."
For all of her fearsome countenance, Ember seems to be quite skillful in handling a toddler gently and supportively. (Physically, at least. Emotionally... well... she's still Ember.) "Look, Darian. The Countess over there has a bird. Would you like to go see if we can say hello to it--?"
Patrizio seems to consider Trueth's question when he's lifting his drink to his lips, the opportunity to wet his whistle perhaps buying him a few moments to consider it. "Aside for an interest in adventure, which's been limited somewhat to exploring Arx since I arrived," he admits to her, "I'll admit that I've not had as much time for leisure of late to pursue interests. I've been in the midst of preparing to work with Lord Valerius Malespero on a guide to the taverns of the city, but that's more of a vocation as much as an interest at this point. Assuming time's afforded for it in the coming weeks." Which sounds dour to him, but he's trying not to be a party pooper, it'd seem.
The jade eyes briefly shift back to Gehenna... and he permits himself a nod. "More perhaps that I was just too tentative to let myself dive in," he agrees. "I'm not going to make the same mistake twice."
Aella looks over to Griffin and she smiles his way before she looks back to Cornelius. She gives the elder Blackshore a nod of her crimson head before she takes a little breath, "I think I am going to take a step out." she says quietly her eyes move around and she murmers a little to Ian before she dose so
Ian doesn't seem to know what to do with the comment Aella made to him. He looks at his glass, and then at her, clearly confused. Then, after a moment, he offers her the glass.
"Lady Gehenna. Lady Trueth." Desma replies to both with a smile. "Your library is a credit to your family." She starts to pick at the food on her plate, a shrimp from the top being the first to find its way into her mouth, and she can't help but to notice the change in atmosphere with the arrival of Cornelius. "Hm." she muses, making no further comment beyond that, though does go on to add, "This food is wonderful!"
"Yes, both Dycard and Romulius are truly boons to House Blackshore," Aedric confesses, gaze shifting between the Princess and the boy clinging to Ember's hip. A small smile tugs at the corners of his lips. Though he would never make such an admission, Darian's attempt to properly greet Alarissa was staggeringly adorable. Head then cants as the Pearl murmurs something to him. Chin dips respectfully. "Of course, Your Highness. Please enjoy the festivities," the sailor concludes, pivoting upon a heel and wandering in the direction of brother and nephews. "I don't know how you expect to dance if you can't stand up straight," he offers to Cornelius in greeting, placing a gauntlet upon the man's left shoulder. "A little fresh air will be good for your lungs."
As he walks by, Griffin gives a simple nod of his head to Dycard. "And how are you today?" As for Aella perhaps she's got that right of it! At least said time and place.
Aella has left the an intricately detailed map table.
Leo, a Ravenseye Warrior, Runa, a large Northern Raven leave, following Aella.
Ian is left with the glass extended when Aella just... leaves. He looks REALLY confused, now. He says something briefly to Zoey, then excuses himself to follow her.
"Mmm. Work is always important. I do a fair bit of research..." She pauses and trails off there, narrowing her eyes at Patrizio. "Are you having a go at me, a guide to taverns in the City?" Trueth asks with a reedy laugh. "Well, I wish you the best of luck. I myself have not gotten out much to uh, test out all of the taverns in the city myself... I spend most of my time in here." She looks at Patrizio and nods solemnly to his last words. "Aye. There is much to consider in the next weeks."
Darian seems very pleased with the idea of a bird, but he quickly forgets because there is a real life princess to smile at. And also Ember is so soft and comfy... and he is experiencing a /sugar crash/. He puts his head down against Ember's shoulder, closing his eyes.
Cornelius glanced along as soon as he heard his brother's voice, turning his head as he pivoted as best he could whilst cradling his whiskey glass and cane. Surprise that did not reach his mouth lifted his brow clearly off his forehead as he tilted his head to Aedric in question, "Dance? Perhaps some month ago. Not today, I am afraid." He remained upright from the clap of gauntlet to his shoulder, clasping his own leather studded hand along Aedric's shoulder, "You are well, I presume?"
Takes in a breath as if to start into a response before glancing around the room, "As much as i'd love to catch up, father mine, I have to host," he snapped quietly, offering an inclination of his head. He spun on his heels toward the party at large and offered a grin to Griffin, "Ah - Lord Redreef, i'm well, and you?" he asked as he easily switched back to being sociable.
Patrizio tries to look like he's joking about it, when he's accused of such, but he then shakes his head too resolutely to be anything but earnest. "No, I'm serious, actually. I found that I kept frequenting the few places I knew of, and then started getting pointers to others... and realized how little of the city I've learned. Seemed a good two-for in trying to figure out how best to advertise the local colour - it gets me out and wandering, and fosters my want for something to drink now and again."
"Your commitment to our House is admirable. Truly, we would be lost without your guiding hand." Aedric's arrival manages to prompt a pursed smile from Romulius, who adds, "Uncle Aedric is right, of course - I'll not crowd you any longer. To your health." He raises his glass in a mock, turning about and striding towards a less 'busy' part of the library.
And ad Dycard turns to greet Griffin, Alarissa's moved to his side. "Lord Dycard, I have not met this lord. Would you care to introduce?"
Half an ear on the conversation at her table, Gehenna has the absent expression of someone concentrating on something else. Judging by the occasional, unobtrusive glances their way, it's the interactions of the Blackshores nearby.
Cornelius waved his hand lightly with a very short, labored smile, "Please, Dycard, as you were. As much as it is a treat, you are to host. Let me not get in your way." He bowed his head as Dycard departed, glancing off to Romulius; the lord was lost in whatever words he would assail his son with. The quiver of an eyelid was borderline a break in his posture before Romulius moved to make off. Cornelius responded in kind with a raise of his glass to his son before peering back to Aedric, "What a lovely occasion."
Ian returns, looking no less baffled than he had when he left.
Inclines his head toward Alarissa, his shark-like smile flashing his incisors as he gestured toward Griffin and bowed low to the princess. "Of course, Your Highness - this is Lord Griffin Redreef. Griffin, Her Highness, the Princess Alarissa. His Grace High Lord Victus' consort," he explained as he made introductions at the princess' request.
With a now-sleepy toddler held in her arms, Ember approaches Cornelius and family, because what this tense situation needs is -- most assuredly -- an infusion of Ember's particular charm. "I'm not certain we've had the occasion to introduce ourselves properly," Ember says, not only to Cornelius but also to Romulius as well. "I am Baroness Ember Redreef -- it is an honor to host your House in our Estate. This," she says, tilting her head gently to indicate the tired little boy, "is my second cousin, Lord Darian."
"As well as I could be, all circumstances considered," the sailor replies, offering Dycard and Romulius an understanding nod as they part to tend to the party's guests. "Sit," he then asserts, lowering himself into an expensive-looking chair. "Your sons are quite the socialites. I will do my best to assist you in identifying unfamiliar faces," the man mutters, interrupted shortly thereafter by the Baroness Redreef. Maybe there would be no need for distant introductions.
Desma finds herself in Cornelius' vicinity, so offers him a smile. "It's very busy, isn't it my lord? Lady Desma Magnotta." She carries an air of ease about her, and balances her plate with supreme ease on the palm of one hand as she executes a neat half bow to the oldest of the Blackshores. "I couldn't help but overhear Lord Romulius call you father. I'm a little acquainted with him, though not greatly. I'm an admirer of his profile."
Zoey rises from her seat and goes to Ian's side.
Trueth looks at Patrizio once more and smiles, then she begins to laugh. "If you're going to do something, do it with your whole heart then. I am still learning the City too... so once you and Marquis Valerius get this guide done, I'll be quite happy to read it and add it to the shelves here. Perhaps I'll have to get my own bookcase." She finishes her drink and sets her glass aside, looking about the room. Lord Griffin is given a smile but then she looks at Patrizio. "Please do excuse me. I should go get the little Lord and take him from Ember."
With the Blackshore family tension machine clustered near the door, Ian is left to pick his way carefully around and past the crowd to rejoin Zoey. He shrugs to her. "She'd already left. I'll write to her later."
Patrizio definitely laughs a bit about having to retrieve the little one, and salutes briefly with his glass. "I'd be happy to provide a copy, when your hands are not as occupied," he offers playfully.
With a gaunt look to his face, the Lord nodded along to Aedric, moving about to pivot to a seat adjacent to him before the Baroness Redreef had come before them. He bowed his head with reverence, "Baroness, a true pleasure. Would you join my brother and I and we may perhaps exchange pleasantries? I am grateful for such a host; you have a lovely estate. I admired it on the way inside and even Slard there had some charming grunts and contemplative looks to give. A hard sell to move that man." Another was before him, nodded to Desma with a chuckle, though it hardly looked as if he was sharing the mirth, "It is, it is. Yes, Lord Romulius is my firstborn." And Cornelius then settled into the very chair adjacent to Aedric.
A wide grin welcomes Dycard. "Quite well. We have to meet again, preferably somewhere else to commiserate. I do believe I should owe you a drink?" Griffin seems to relax somewhat. Alarissa is given a half-bow, and a cheeky grin. "Ah, Princess Alarissa. Well met! I'm afraid I prefer Griffin, it keeps me grounded. Unless it is necessary." His eyes twinkle.
"You shouldn't have any trouble staying grounded here," Gehenna says to Griffin, rather dryly, refilling her glass again. She looks up and curtsies to Alarissa, adding, "Princess, it's a pleasure to see you here. Gehenna Redreef is my name. Griffin is my brother." She smiles.
Romulius either fails to notice Ember's introduction or ignores it during what could accurately be described as a storming off from his father's company, apparently more interested in creating physical distance and finishing his drink.
"I hold my staff to high standards," Ember replies to Cornelius. She doesn't smile -- in fact, she's still glaring, but in an unfocused, constantly-glaring kind of way -- but she does sound a little warm around the edges in a prideful fashion. "I am pleased to hear that they meet the standards of our fellow Darkwater vassals as well." Ember's amber eyes glance to Desma: "My Lady. I apologize for not welcoming you sooner."
Ember's attention is briefly caught by three things before she has a chance to accept Cornelius's offer. First is Romulius storming off; next is Trueth approaching, no doubt to reclaim her child before he becomes Ember's by right of possession; and third, Griffin's eschewing of a title around the Highlord's wife, which makes the Baroness give her cousin an 'abort, abort' kind of pointed look.
Trueth gets Lord Darian Redreef.
"Griffin then, since we are in your home." Alarissa dips her head. "Lord Dycard. Now, what is on the coins for redreef? Will there be little bloody swords? Or Lord Griffin's face? For that matter, Griffin, when it comes time to host for Thrax, what should we put on our coins? The claw of arx with her murder mittens exposed?" Gehenna garners her attention and her smile widens. "So many from Redreef! I have met so many in the past fortnight. I am delighted to see the numbers swell in the city. A pleasure to meet you. No doubt I will be spending more time here, as the Lady Sedna asked permission to capture my likeness. Is there anything that the pair of you are profecient at? Sailing? Fighting? Perhaps diplomacy?"
Trueth takes Darian, who by now, truly IS a sweet little boy because he's so sleepy, and exits from the library, looking like she's ready for a nap herself.
Desma steps back and away from Cornelius and Ember, the latter of who's apologies she waves away with a hand. "Ah, it is busy, and I'm sociable enough to make myself known, Baroness. "It's with a frown etched on her brow that she receives a messenger, and thereafter seeks out Dycard. "I have to leave early as I'm wanted elsewhere. I just wished to thank you for hosting this soiree. It's been lovely." A glance to the food still held in her hand. "Might I take this with me? I'll see that the plate is returned. Clean."
After a messenger arrives and hands Zoey a note, she leaves Ian's side to drift Ember's way, murmuring something to the Baroness before preparing to take her leave.
Alarissa takes a commemorative Blackshore coin from a simple cloth pouch.
"Admirer of his profile?" Aedric inquires, attention shifting to Desma. He raises a brow and smiles. "Have a pleasant afternoon, my lady," the mariner calls after her, gaze returning to Cornelius. "Both Romulius and Dycard have yet to find themselves romantic interests. If we are to grow, and New Hope is to be restored, matchmaking is the next logical course of action."
Ian takes a few steps towards the door, apparently intending to leave with his wife.
Octavian, a silken spaniel, Ruslana, an aide in Kennex livery, 2 Kennex corsairs leave, following Zoey.
Dycard nods absently at Desma's request, offering a smile even as his eyes widened at Griffin's informality. "Of course, my lady - be well," he replied before clasping a hand on Griffin's shoulder, "The coins are Blackshore themed actually - and as for what the Thrax coin is adorned with? I suppose that'd be up to you, Your Highness," he offered with a smile and a laugh.
Splinter, the golden-eyed osprey leaves, following Desma.
Cornelius smiled lightly behind his glass, taking a rather measured sip as he glanced after the woman that made her exit. His stone gaze centered from one son to the next, nodding lightly as if to affirm his brother's comments, "This is true. Though, I am sure it is more than apparent to them. If they have been frivolously sowing seeds without our knowledge, matchmaking will be our only course. But, of course, I need not tell this to the Voice, no?" He placed the glass down on the table, taking more of a relaxed position in the highback chair, "We will give them time to...admire a bit more profiles of aspiring admirers. And if no profile is up their liking, well. I shall intercede."
"I surmise it would be the Baroness who decides, Lord Cornelius" Alarissa sing songs from where she is. "She is, after all, your leige."
Ember whispers a brief exchange with Zoey, after handing Darian back off to Trueth. The Baroness gives Desma a small nod of farewell, also... and then her attention returns to Cornelius and Aedric. The Baroness moves to join the pair and take a seat of her own for a moment. Despite her fierce aura, she has the ladylike mannerisms down pat, to the point that one might even suspect she's drilled herself on them like it was a matter of military tactics. "Redreef is likewise... largely unmarried," Ember notes. "Even the one child who lives here at the moment is the child of a widow." Ember's eyes cast out at the room at large, surveying all present, lingering on her cousins for a moment longer than the rest. "Mm."
If the title-less Griffin pains Gehenna - which he certainly does - she hides it in her drink, taking a casual (if slightly deep) swig and emerging with a calm face firmly in place. "I," she says with a little shrug to Alarissa, "spend my days at diplomacy, Your Highness. Formerly in Redreef Shores alone, I was called back to Arx only recently. I'm quite happy to be back, though things have changed quite drastically since the last time I was here. Lord Griffin is a poet. His work is still quite renowned in and around Redreef Shores." She turns a proud look on her brother, emphasising the Lord just a tiny, tiny bit, and definitively not mentioning what else Griffin has gotten up to in the last few years.
3 Ivory Shields leaves, following Patrizio.
Cornelius rose his head lightly toward where Alarissa had spoken, nodding with a smile, "Yes, that would be my summation as well. I wish not to push the hand of fate forcibly but should my children find their own pursuits lacking, we shall give them a small push, under the grace of Baroness Redreef, no?" His head then shifted to give attention to Ember. "It would bear careful consideration, I dare say, my lady. An incompatible pairing has a gambler's chance of providing a rather favorable outcome. Though, Time is a wondrous tool. It can mend hearts, sway minds, change dispositions. Should you have potential suitors, I would be willing to hear them and see if my sons would take to the prospect." He glanced to Aedric with a curious gaze settled in his brow, "I am rather surprised Romulius has not been taken already..."
"See? My sister keeps me grounded." Griffin doesn't miss the Baroness' look. However it's too late. "I'm afraid I am not the person who would know, Princess. As for what I'm skilled at? A bit of this, a bit of that. I'm plugging my way through the books. Perhaps one might say I'm a performer?"
"Then I shall have to come to you soon, for assitance with a matter. And then to dear Griffin here when there is a need of lovely words and a keen mind. I would invite you to take advantage of Thrax's Library if you wish to plug through tomes not found on the shelves here." There's a glance to Cornelius at his reply but then back to the small ground at hand, right hand coming over to gently squeeze Dycards forearm and murmur.
Making a pointed show of ignoring any snippets of his father's conversation he might hear, Dycard idly sipped at his drink as he continued to loiter near Alarissa. With a sour look on his face he stroked his chin and nodded at Griffin's explanation, "The Lord Redreef is certainly something, Your Highness, if secretive," he explained, leaning in and nodding at the princess's words. His features softened at the assurance and for an instant his smile seemed more genuine as he leaned in to respond to the woman.
Aedric brings his left gauntlet to rest between cuirass and breastbone as his mind mulls over Ember's confessions. "If you've any suitable candidates, my lady, we would be happy to entertain proposals. As your sister vassal, we stand ready to provide you whatever assistance you might acquire. Lord Darian is, of course, always welcome to join us at New Hope. The Baroness Blackshore and her brother are skilled shipwrights. Dycard is well-versed in sailing and diplomacy. Such skills and vocations would be beneficial for the boy, if he's mathematically or politically inclined," the sailor reasons, nodding once.
Ember makes a subtle motion toward one of her handmaidens, and within moments, that same handmaiden is there with some Redreef Shores rum. Ember takes the glass, then looks to Cornelius and Aedric, as if to say, 'Just me?' Still, she has a long sip. "Mmm. Perhaps a trade," she jokes. Sort of.
Griffin's words draw a brief little smile from Gehenna, half amusement, half genuine warmpth for her baby brother. She inclines her head to Alarissa. "Of course, Your Highness. Shoudl you ever need anything, I would be honoured. Thrax's legacy is a great one. Anything I can do to help that legacy along, I would be proud to do."
She watches the quiet exchange between Dycard and Alarissa, then glances over at Ember trying to matchmake with the Blackshores, nodding slightly. Logical choice for a party.
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