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Aleksei

[Ravenspire] Finally.

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"Alright people at the Bar its time i introduce you to the newest sensational beer of the year Wonder beer" he begain to give out the wonder beer samples to everyone at the bar tables "here you go enraged bartenders" he said to an enraged bartender who soon after drinking it lost their rage and begain asking if they could sell it " why yes you may if you splt 50/50 "he said as he gave out more samples, he did'nt notice that he passed right by the grand duke @Alexei  he was to foucused in making this Beer popular "The bestpart of it it taste the way you want it to!" 

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@Narcissa @Aleksei @Diremast @Hurttoto

Deiter gave the brew seller a gracious nod as he snatched not one, but two of the bottles. He spoke a word to the bartender, asking only for a fifth of the profit for his backing should he pursue the business endeavor. The worth of the Duke's word was known to be more than gold. Few in Kadia, or Valucre for that matter, possessed the same level of wealth and political power as he did.

He gave Desmond a knowing smile as he pushed from the bar, even gave Elodie and Dilon a nod of acknowledgment. The other man seemed uncomfortable, much to his lady's amusement. It made him think back on times long ago, when he was following an exiled Corvinus into the deep heart of the Cold South. How time flew.

He approached Rou with a polite smile, placing a bottle before her. "Hope I'm not being too forward." He stated, though the amusement touching his voice seemed to take away the seriousness of his words. "Seems we're two peas in a pod." His voice was a soft baritone, a lilt floated within it.

"I am Deiter Eichmann, Grand Duke and all that." He said, brushing away his title as nothing more than a formality. He was confident, but not in the entitled one would expect from second or third generation noble. He was a man who had shed sweat and blood for everything he had.

"I'm not too familiar with nobility outside of Kadia, so forgive me for not knowing your name." Deiter said apologetically, he was beginning to realize why everyone teased him about taking a break, getting out more. 

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s17Ru1I.png @Alexei 

                                                                                    

Her mother threatened her an inch of her life if she so as much thinks about removing the necklace around her neck. It just made the young girl more nervous than she had been before they even left the house! The night before, her heart was in her throat, her worries kept drowning her words, and she struggled to function during her studies. This is just a momentous - yes! momentous! - moment in their lives, and she only wants it to be a day of absolute perfection. Her excitement and fear just diluted her night, which caused her to just give up on anything productive at the time. 

And to make things ten times worse, her parents made her travel to the wedding with her battle sisters. A once bright morning was torn asunder when she filed behind the rest of her fellow sisters in arms. The group of young ladies went in silence, only speaking to their favored confidants when time was premised, glancing at Rosalind once in awhile with a snicker on their lips. She sneered at them, nearly growled when things got a little too thick with silent hostility. 

She heard one of them talk about the tiara and necklace she wore, saying they were too much - well, they're too much. The items matched and they belonged to her mother who got them from her husband (Rosalind's father, her hero) as a wedding present. Next on the subjects of gossip was her dress, something she hadn't picked out but appreciated. The color made her glow and the bow resting on her hip was cute; all in all she felt cute and they can suck her toe for being so salty about her appearance.

They are a bunch of dirty cowards!, she had thought to herself. Rosalind Elise Declan is not a force to be teased and she will not stand for all the snarky remarks or the underhanded tones. There is no room for jealous girls in the Leonis Sororitas; these girls will not last, and if they do, she will be there to make them understand who she is and what she's capable of. 

As far as she is concerned, her business is none of their business, and they shouldn't be so ready to jump to improper conclusions. Honestly, it's rude and inconsiderate to the family they all worship to sully their God and his beloveds names. They should be punished by hanging, or whipping, or maybe just a nice fashioned kick to the throat. Yellow eyes turned to yellow daggers pointing to the backs of the other girls; imagination now running wild with ideas on how to deal with her current situation. 

By the time they reached the Hall she was fuming, having too much time to think about how her sisters had been treating her the last few months. How quick loyalties change, and for the most ridiculous reasons as well. It wasn't her fault that she caught his eye and it wasn't her fault that she was put at the top of her class the last rounds of grading. What she does, it's nothing special, anyone can get good grades and speak to royalty without stuttering. 

Julius is human, there is nothing strange about him. Just because he had briefly approached her on a subject she excels, her sisters chose to suddenly shun her. It's whatever, of course. She'll be mad now but she refuses to let it ruin her education and advancement to becoming the best.

When the smells and sounds finally reached her little bubble of annoyance, Rosalind felt herself begin to melt under all the happiness - for now. Her sisters (ha! sisters) parted ways, leaving her to stand awkwardly off to the side as the God-Emperor and his Empress approached their table. She stood just to the right of the table, next to the presents and a few trays of food. You could say she was too much in awe of the beauty standing just a few feet away from her to notice anything else. 

Edited by Aleksei

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Just briefly, two odd bony appendages emerged from the recesses of the robed figure’s hood. They wiggled in the air, tasting it, and the excited tittering increased tenfold! So much sweet, sweet goodness, somewhere close? But where? The creature’s head turned on a swivel, savouring the sickly aroma that poured from the great hall, whatever it was must be in there, he thought to himself, moving with an agility that hardly belied his hunched over and crookbacked form towards the entrance. If it was policed, Skitt seemed to have no trouble slipping in, for what he lacked in guile he made up for with a natural grace that was wholly instinct, darting this way and that between the favoured guests until he had made his way into the coolness of the hall. Not to mention closer to his prey!

 

“Omnomnom.” He seemed to titter in that odd clicking fashion of his, louder now, but still barely perceptible unless one decided to get close to him. The guests were all focused on the pretty lady and her stern manling, not on little old Skitt, sneaking his way closer and closer to his prize. His large bug eyes soaked up the large multi-layered shape of his desire only a few moments later. In pride of place upon a table filled with smaller but no-less alluring goodies was the largest cake Skitt had ever seen. On top, two tiny figurines of the humans everyone was so enthralled with seemed to dance over the delectable treat, Skitt wondered if they would taste as good as the cake would?

 

He sneaked closer to it, looking this way and that, waiting for his opportunity. If he struck to soon, he may be waylaid before he could feast upon it as much as he desired. Strike too late, and someone may uncover his alien appearance and force him into a confrontation he was uninterested in. The cake was all he wanted, in this life or the next, but he had to be patient.

 

But damn that was going to be hard.

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By now the man had taken notice of only white or black, and realized he'd dressed in the wrong color. With a sigh he watched as his clothes turned to an ashen grey. He could only think of decay when looking at this shade of grey. The color all natural beings would turn to later when their end came and had past them by.  The thoughts of the reaper always seemed to jump out to him. As death claimed all eventually. Even the untouchables. So far he'd been lucky enough to avoid the thing that had so far given him so much luck.  When a whisper from the person to his right disturbed him. " Sir someone was trying to read you? Possibly? It was the Bride I'm positive. " The man held up his hand.  " It wasn't really them reading me, it was the Archetic that maker of senarios that challenges thought. Rather rude that they think I'd know all. I'm only flesh and blood." One couldn't know all unless they made all. You could call him presumptuous but it all came from fact. They hadn't done it sure, but yet human archeticture was always the same, either a copy or a rebellious streak trying to escape and become its own. Did it really matter? It was his own thoughts he wasn't judging just making educated guess and assememts of the situation nothing more nothing less. However as far as he knew he was most definetly the most boring person here. Everyone else was drinking or talking. Yet here he sat alone just out side the hall.

he couldn't bear to look let at those guards, let alone let them sit within ear shot so that they could hear everyword. Of course this place being what it was he knew even those words while not heard by guards someone had heard them he knew it.

He had nohi g against the guards other than power armor. Spin it however you liked he was annoyed simply because it popped up every where. It may have been the first time he noticed it here but he knew two other populaces that used it. Supposedly there was also a mechanized placed while he wasn't sure he wouldn't be surprised. He was seriously starting to consider retirement of his lancers but who was to blame, society or those people who made it seem like a super uber thing? 

 

He finakky got uo and walked inside wanting onky water from the bartender.  

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Outside in The Garden , an interloper appeared.  A muscular man wandered in from the streets, tipping his head and sniffing the air every few paces.  He was covered in a sleek skin of shimmering blue scales with elaborate plumage around his head, plumage which reflected every color of the rainbow depending on what angle the light hit it.  His forearms and calves were exposed, however, appearing drab olive in color.  His waist was lined with pouches and he carried a small paper bag in his right hand.  His face was obscured by the giant skull of a serpent, fashioned into a mask, save for a faint spiritual glow around the eye sockets.

Arklar barged into the Garden as though he had no concept of private property or closed events.  Or perhaps he was chasing something more important than simple privacy?  He was following a scent, the scent of a particular youngling.  A creature that Arklar had raised, and one which often found himself mixed up in mischief.  Arklar was aimlessly chasing the faint smell that Skitt left behind.  It was only as he attracted a few puzzled gasps from random passersby that Arklar realized that he had wandered into some event or another.  The humans here wore such fine garb, and there were armed guards that Arklar could spot off in the distance.

". . .  Grr."

He grumbled with a reptilian flair in his throat.

"Must he always test me so?"

Arklar lamented as he squeezed his hand tighter on the bag in his right hand.  Those of the acutest sense of smell would be able to tell that this bag held pastries inside.  It would seem Skitt had more grandiose dreams in mind.  How was Arklar ever to find his tiny companion within this crowd?  Even on his worst day, Skitt was a natural born master of skulking.

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hPL3SKk.jpgA gathering of royalty


When Elodie initially had brought it up, Dilon had some reservations regarding their attendance to the royal ceremony. But then again, he knew that he wouldn’t have much of a choice since it seemed like Elodie had already made up her mind. But actually being here, watching the God-Emperor and his queen make their way up the path prepared for them he had to admit that it wasn’t really that bad. The welcomed news that Elodie had taken care of their tribute ahead of time came as a relief to him and it showed in the expression on his face as he smiled appeared in response to her words.

One less thing to worry about, he thought to himself as he corrected his tie with his off hand.

“You think so? Well then I just might.” He did his best to express confidence in his words, but he wasn’t sure that she would buy it. She always had been able to read him like an open book, something not fitting someone who had been specially trained to withstand harsh interrogation for extended periods of time. She had complimented him on his appearance but as he looked upon her it became clear that he himself paled in comparison to her shining glow.

“Well, that is exactly what I am afraid of.” Her words didn’t inspire much comfort, but he was grateful for her concern and it showed in the manner he looked at her as she proceeded inspect and correct his attire with great care. He did the same back to her as he moved his hands across her shoulders in a gentle fashion and came to a rest holding the top of her arms. A gesture that perhaps spoke more about his feelings about her rather than actually adjusting her outfit.

“Just don’t blame me if some old nobleman end up having a heart attack in response to a blatant lack of courteous protocol.” He spoke to lighten the mood between them. Elodie did seem to feel right at home, himself not so much. But what was certain without a doubt, was that he was exactly where he should be.

Right there at her side.

Activity was buzzing all around them, but for now Dilon’s attention was restricted around Elodie and in their conversation. But before he had time to respond to her invitation to drink and dance, he was interrupted (saved) by the sudden entrance of an approaching figure. He had called her name and by her reaction to his voice, it was clear that she knew the man. Following Elodie’s lead, he turned to the man that had approached them.

He quickly recognized the man, even though it had been a long time since they have last met. They had been approached by royalty in the form of Prince Desmond. He bowed to the prince in respect while listening to the status update he brought them. As expected, most of the members of the royal family were expected to attend the wedding. But they had yet to see any other than the Emperor and his bride as of yet, other than the prince now standing in front of them that is.

He had remembered Dilon by name, and as Desmond spoke it was as a surprise to him. He would not expect a prince to actually recognize him by name. They had only met briefly a few times many years ago. He had to admit that the prince’s memory had impressed him. Or perhaps his name had just came up in some kind of obligatory briefing of the guests that would be attending the wedding.

“Prince Desmond, it is a pleasure. And yes, it should prove to be an exciting day for all of Kadia.” He threw another bow in the direction of Desmond as their brief exchange of words concluded. He suspected that they would talk more before the day was over, but right now Elodie’s previous offer for them to fetch drinks.

Yes, he could sure use a drink right about now.

“Speaking of which, about those drinks...” Again he turned to Elodie, noticing her attention still fixed towards the young princess resting at Desmond's back. Shifting his attention he noticed a man walking around and past them, giving him and Elodie a subtle nod that he was quick to return in pure reflex in that moment. It took a second before he could connect the man’s face with a name. He recalled it as the Grand Duke of Scales, Deiter.  

“I overheard some rumours about a peculiar man who is supposedly handing out something called “Miracle beer”, or wait perhaps it was “Wonder beer”? No wait I think it was “New Age beer”. Well whatever the name, I heard that it would taste much better than any other liquid available here. We should see if it lives up to its reputation.” He had never heard any brand going under that name, then again he could hardly be considered by an expert in any stretch of the imagination when it came to alcoholic drinks.

“You are welcomed to join us, prince Deiter. Don’t worry we have enough time to make our way over to the bar and back before the actual ceremony begins.” He wasn’t sure if the prince had any desire to accompany them, or even if he was using the proper title when speaking to the prince but he felt that the courteous thing to do was to invite the prince to join them. Although he’d liked to have some alone time with Elodie, he knew that it was inevitable that they would have to entertain members of the royal family sooner or later. 

Perhaps a few drinks would help to loosen him up, it was an celebration after all.

Making their way over towards the bar, he noticed what seemed to be the man he had overheard a couple speaking about earlier. As he saw him he noticed him from earlier. He directed his company towards the curious man as he was still handing out bottles to interested parties. The patrons seemed to welcome him gifts but throwing a glance towards the bar, it seemed that his presence was not appreciated by everyone.

“I hear this “Miracle beer” of yours is supposed to taste unlike anything else available here. And that it apparently tastes the way you want it. Are you saying it tastes different for everyone, is that true?” He paused for a moment as he waited for the man’s attention to turn towards them.

“I would like to try it, if I may?” Dilon asked, he threw a gaze towards Elodie to see if she shared his curiosity to the rumors about the drink. 


@Aleksei @Alexei @Hurttoto

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PHKjSeN.jpg

20090114085702653.jpg

Awkwardly standing near the bar, the rose witch delicately sipped from a fancy glass of alchohol. In her other hand, a little flower-themed cake. On her shoulder, sat Merlin. The white gecko scoffed and looked up at his mistress, crawling up to the back of her head to retreat into the light sunhat. Then, peeking from under the cloth, the familiar created an audible croak that may or may not have attracted the attention of nearby strangers. "This is ridiculous. I might aswell scorch this place to the ground."

Raine blinked. Her eyes rolled over with an annoyance, and replied by tugging the hat down, making the reptile smothered in blossom-pink bangs. She put down her glass down on the buffet table.

"Merlin, you-you're just hungry. A-Atleast you d-don't look like--"

A very chattering and ominous 'omnomnom' caught her attention, and her eyes widened with surprise. Beside the rose witch, was a creature draped by a dark cloak. And out came from the cloak, were two horrifying bony mandibles. It was fixated on the wedding cake that laid vulnerable on the buffet table, staring at it with utmost glee. Raine believed that it was rude to stare, so she immediately looked away, while sliding her cake away from the weird stranger.

"Like.. that.."

In fear of taking her delicious pastry, she ended up stuffing the little cake in her mouth, downing it with a little sip of her glass. But to her surprise, nothing was left! Just a sad drop of alchohol. Maybe she'd been unaware of the fact she filled the glass with a small amount of wine. Raine blinked, and watched as the last drop slowly came way to drop off the transparent edge. She replied with a sad pout, then looked around for the bar.

Another stranger was boasting about his astonishing.. 'Wonder Beer'? 'Miracle Beer'? Ah, that will do. So she approached him with a rather nervous gesture, toying with her pink locks in shyness. Merlin watched as his mistress walked towards the man, crawling down from her nape and preching on her shoulder. Believing that it was a good manner, the dream witch removed her hat, and held it on her stomach whilst clutching onto the glass.

"I-I w-would like to try, t-too.."

 

 

 

 

Edited by TurtleFrog

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"Why yes its true that it taste like whatever you want so yeh it taste diffrent for diffrent people " he said as he gave the beer to the men and women sitting around "also just for this hour any of the beer you get from me is free so drink up." @Diremast . He 

@TurtleFrog "here you go its free this hour so go crazy" he said to the woman

@ODSTDRAGON "water's boring try some of this" give the wonder beer.

 

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25 minutes ago, Hurttoto said:

"Why yes its true that it taste like whatever you want so yeh it taste diffrent for diffrent people " he said as he gave the beer to the men and women sitting around "also just for this hour any of the beer you get from me is free so drink up." @Diremast . He 

@TurtleFrog "here you go its free this hour so go crazy" he said to the woman

@ODSTDRAGON "water's boring try some of this" give the wonder beer.

 

The man waved him away. No thanks. I don't drink those burning liquids. "

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What a beautiful day for a wedding. It was perfect in fact! However, it would slowly become apparent that something wasn't quite right. Perhaps it was a simple thought in the back of one's mind that it simply seemed to good to be true. Whatever the case, a chaotic, demonic presence could be felt approaching. It was a massive presence with immense pressure, able to cause shock and awe in the least at it's sudden appearance obviously close enough to pick up on it. Perhaps the recipients of such vibes would easy accept or even relate to this energy presence, or perhaps they would clash with it. Only time would truly tell. But for certain, this feeling was foreboding enough to give one the sense that it was a force not to be trifled with. 

Spoiler

@Aleksei @Akako Akari

OOC: I'm fine with either or both of you arriving to this occasion with Koji respectively. Just give me a heads up so I know how to paint my next post for sure. This was just a glimpse of the arrival. Well, obviously.  =)

 

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Leo_zps15a56ee4.png@ Everyone.

                                                                                    

They were unable to make the entire journey to their table. Once they stepped on the dancefloor they were bombarded by various guests eager to make their acquaintance. Leoa let her husband go to drop down to her knees, spreading her train around her, to greet a small child. There is a reason why they have so many children - Leoa loves little babes, loves being there as they grow, and then starting all over again. Corvinus has never been one to deny his wife. 

The small child had yet to get her words, but Leoa was a eager listener and gestured often to keep the child babbling all nonsensical. She didn't do this because she knew the mother would feel blessed that her child received Leoa's eager attention. It was done because she genuinely loved to interact with as many people as she possibly can, and because she would never sneer at a child for grabbing at her with dirty hands. The Empress isn't the sort to look down on anyone unless they've truly earned that action. 

Once the child was taken away (with a smear of lipstick across its adorable face because the Lion has to freckle everyone with a kiss or two), it would soon be replaced by a thin little frame covered in white satin and smelling like the garden. Leoa eagerly squeezed the sun-kissed sprite and gave her usual assault of kisses and compliments; her affections easily given, always, to her beautiful children. Oly hadn't been to the bar (yet), instead she became too occupied with the spirits floating in the large garden outside the hall. 

Olympia released her mother, giving her one final hug and kiss on the cheek, before she turned her attentions to her father. The teenager had to crane her neck back to look up at the tall figure that is her father; her smile made her young face glow and her eyes to sparkle with adoration. The Empress has always loved how their children looked at their father, often showering him with attention that would be considered strange and awkward to outsiders. She thinks it fits him just fine; he took being a father with stride and pride. 

This little slow in progression gave an opening for anyone and everyone to approach them - or at least Leoa for the time being. Olympia had grabbed hold of Corvin's gloved hand and started to tug him further onto the dance floor, not at all allowing her father to sneak out of dancing. 

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Two crowds had formed, two bubbling masses filled with the great swarm of humanity, and so like a hive they were. One group genuflected before their queen, as they rightly should, slavering for her attention, though she divulged it mostly among her younglings. The others, the soldiers of the hive, yearned for more primal indulgences, sugar water and the intoxication humans gained from their funny beverages. Whatever other reasons there were for gathering in such a mass was far beyond Skitt’s experience, and hardly aside the point. All Skitt was interested in was how many of their eyes were diverted, their weak little primate eyes with their stunted view. He was sure that few of the humans were glancing his way now, perhaps few enough to strike.

 

Meandering casually close to the decadent dessert that called to him, Skitt would have whistled if he could. As Arklar knew, he was a skulker at heart, and skulking just close enough to the cake to have a taste was well within his capabilities. Beneath his robe, a clawed hand snatched at one corner of the icing, slicing a slither from it so fast it was hard to tell what he was doing as he walked past, bringing the delectable morsel to his pincered mouth.

 

“Titiitititiitit.” The insectoid chirping intensified as he chomped through the sugary deliciousness of the icing, his instinctual desire to share such a treasure with his adopted hive overcoming his already questionable judgement. He turned on his heel, right back towards the cake, and all semblance of cunning was discarded as his clawed hands emerged from beneath his cloak and reached deep into the spongy pudding, grabbing great handfuls of the lower layers and immediately shovelling it into his face. The eyes of the Paladins fixed to him at once, the strange creature, desecrating their Holy Emperor’s wedding cake with its filthy hands! Yet Skitt did not care, he simply feasted, being sure to pocket a few large handfuls to share with the others later. He was not entirely selfish, after all.

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@Aleksei

He had predicted they would be moved by the various nobility and onlookers. It seemed in excitement and grandure of the moment some basic courtesies, it was to be expected. Leoa had always been one who brought the necessary nurturing nature that puts many at ease. Though he knew that she loved to engage and spoil the children of their empire. It was something he had become accustomed to.

He stood at Leoa's side, his gloved hands clasped behind his back, and as his son's often teased, scowling. On truth his expression was stern, though also  hinting amusement at his wife's joy. It was their dynamic that created the balance that was the soil of the empire. It was often something that he thought of during such occasions.

He was pulled from his own thoughts as his daughter guided him to the dance floor. He honestly wasn't sure which was going to be the least comfortable, though avoiding any politics until the guests have had plenty to drink would be beneficial. The more alcohol they had, the more likely he could make deals that benefitted Kadia.

In truth it wasn't as if he had much choice. He had a bad habit of indulging his daughters whims, though by doing so it had allowed him to subtly guide them. Not to say that he has never been stern with them. It was the only way he had survived their more rebellious years.

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@Alexei

It seemed the dress-clad viper missed the stolen glances of the Prince Desmond, her own gaze preoccupied with the thought of how distant Corvinus had appeared to have aged so relatively little over the years.  She vaguely remembered conversations of exile at the fireside and in the military camps that were stationed in Orisia to rid the island of the undead threat, but that was a time when they were both clad in armor and bathed in dirt and blood, surviving on nothing but ambition and the hope to wake up from the living nightmare.  She hardly recognized him in formal regalia and on the arm of his dubiously sweet Empress, surrounded by children, wife, family-- privately, she thought it a good look for him, despite the power that came with it.  The battle was so many years ago, though it often haunted her behind closed eyes and in moments of sleep; torrential rains suffocating them, muddy pits like quicksand, beasts borne of old soldiers and former comrades whose skin peeled from their bones and blackened with decay, yet with an animal hunger that saw no rest and gave them no quarter.  Too many lives were lost, and too many joined the force of the cursed.  Memories like those bred dreams that were far from pleasant, haunted even in beautiful girls that did no more than look on at a wedding.

"Hope I'm not being too forward. Seems we're two peas in a pod."

Rou's head turned attentively with a flutter of curls that swept behind her, amber eyes drawn to the offered bottle placed before her, and the man who offered it.  He towered over her nearly a foot, with sable hair that nearly matched hers, but with an obvious complexion of Genesarian fair.  The armor suggested knighthood, or perhaps a higher honor within the ranks of Kadia for its regality, though strapping muscles and youthful skin beneath painted him quite young for such a station-- battles evidenced by that rugged, clean scar across his nose.  He seemed familiar, somehow, though Rou couldn't quite place where.

"Is that right?" came her reply with a curious raise of a finely sculpted eyebrow; her voice was not high and delicate as one might find a princess, tempered with patience and politeness-- rather, it was the low, reverberating hum of one not unlike a sultry jazz crooner, deep and womanly, running like honey over her throat and purring with feline femininity as it left her lips, whispering between loud crescendos.  She perused his smile with an askew glance of her painted eyes, the implicated allure radiating off of him like an aura that was switched on by the charismatic flashing of his grin.  How many a woman found themselves run afowl for that smile, she wondered, privately chuckling to herself behind the raise of her wrist to her lips.  "Forgive me, your Grace, but among so many of your countrymen, I feel it is you who has the boon.  It shall only be moments before the long-awaited bride and groom have their dance, and then some young and beautiful courtier will see you whisked away to join them."  With a gentle nod, she prompted the Duke to turn over his shoulders, where a few young girls in pretty white dresses were huddled close together, giggling and egging each other on to approach the exalted Knight.  "See?"  Finishing off her bourbon with an amused smirk, with hands free she accepted the fetched gift from Deiter.

Offering her other hand with a pivot of her wide hips, she extended it to him for polite introduction-- whether he saw fit to shake or place a kiss upon it was his prerogative.  "Rou," she introduced herself shortly, but paused only to instate her titles.  As part of Raphael's entourage, it would be a disservice to see her displace the titles he had named his prized foreign beauty with.  "Rou Ji, one of the four distinguished An'She and Ambassador of Umbra, council to Lord Emperor Sauriel of the Arcane East Empire."  She bowed her head, sinking only in modest curtsy-- out of habit, as reputation would have it-- Rou bowed for little.  "I am pleased to meet you, your Grace."

"Alas, this shall be my companion for the night, I fear," she said, brandishing the Wonder Beer bottle; while she preferred a stronger ale, she thought it rude to accept the bounty of a free bar.  Rou paused for a moment, however, as while the cold, dewy condensation felt pleasantly cool in her hands, the pleated tin top kept its contents squarely protected within the bottle.  With the bartenders busy and she with a penchant for thinking outside the box, she was caught by the sight of his pristine, polished armor-- a catlike grin spread across her lips.  "May I?"  She shifted her weight, slinking the hourglass shape of her dress from one side to the other, as she held the neck of the bottle between her fingers, positioning it against the edge of a plate of Deiter's gauntlet.  With minimal pressure and the fork of her hand to stabilize the bottle, turning the bottle askew sent the cap flying.  Satisfied at her own cleverness, she took a swig, though paused at the taste-- quite like a hearty ale, indeed.  "Impressed is an unusual color on me," she admitted, and lifted the bottle to him as thanks, "Quite the trick, this is."  With a pause, Rou took a moment to remember her manners, though the semblance of a somewhat facetious smirk would intend her gesture more to poke fun at the Duke-- "Shall I get yours for you?"

With a few idle moments to enjoy drink and the sight of the bustling, happy family gathering in the center for dance and gaiety, Rou leaned her back against the bar, more content to enjoy the familial sight from afar, toning a token bitterness to her drink to match the pit in her stomach.  This was what Raphael had intended for Rou, as an idolized citizen of Umbra, to be alongside a husband who cherished her and birth babies who would love her and carry on their parents legacy... was she ungrateful for protesting his wishes, now as a rejected favorite of her Emperor?  Somehow, Rou just couldn't see herself bound to a motherly role.  She didn't want babies, she wanted power.

With another glance towards the charismatic Duke, Rou narrowed her gaze with scrutiny-- but only to wrack her memories to recall the face that prompted such recognition.  "I hadn't thought to know anyone from Kadia's provinces other than his Majesty, Corvinus, but something about you strikes me.  Have we bychance met before, your Grace?"

Edited by Narcissa

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