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[Ravenspire] Finally.

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He gave a light chuckle at her words. "They will try, many are no doubt snares laid out by the Empress." He said, flashing a quick smile before stealing a glance at the young ladies ogling him. He had lost track of the amount of women Leoa had put in his path, subtly or otherwise. "No doubt trying to get me to make a mistake and marry me off." Most, if not all, of the marriage arrangements were made by her. Both he and Desmond we're the only ones left.

Naturally he would offer her a light kiss on her knuckles bowing slightly to do so, a mischievous smile touching the corners of his lips. He had to exercise quite a bit of discipline to keep his eyes from lingering too long on her hips. Especially as she moved. She was different from the young courtiers that so often sought his attention. The confident grace she displayed attracted his curiosity and interest immediately.

"A pleasure, An'She Rou Ji." He tasted the strange title and her name, his littling accent caressing the words. Something was familiar about the name, like he had heard it before. "Please, call me Deiter." He said, offering her a wink. He treated as an equal in rank, though his was unclear of the exact equivalence of their titles. He would have to do some digging concerning the Arcane East.

"Perhaps we could keep each other company, and avoid such a fate?" He suggested, knowing that his own evening would end in the same manner. She was intriguing to him, like a puzzle to conquer. The Duke could never deny his curiosity, and there was something exciting about the prospect. "You've captured my curiosity." He said, gesturing for her to proceed, he was obviously not worried about his armor, confident no damage would be done.

He laughed as the cap flew from the top of her bottle. He had almost missed it, allowing his eyes to wander and watch Rou's vivacious body move. It was an appreciative wandering, more instinctive attraction to the feminine quality. "If so, I will be sure to put my money behind it. Might prove a profitable novelty." He saw her intent, and matched her smirk as he humored the exotic ambassador, he gave her a nod to go ahead. He might try the trick himself.

He watched her as the silence stretched on for a few moments, noting the bitterness that shadowed her face. He noted how it seemed to only accentuate her. Gray eyes followed her line of sight to the Imperial family gathering in the center. His own expression taking on a strange cast. It was more a tragic acceptance of something lost instead of an ambition unmet. There was also contemplation, as his picked as why this strikingly beautiful woman was so familiar to him.

He could almost feel her eyes on him, it caused him to turn his gaze back to her. "Perhaps! We're you by chance fighting the undead when they attacked from Ellwood?" His excitement evident in his voice as realization struck him. "I was fighting under Corvinus' banner at the time." He was beginning to remember an exotic woman resembling her taking part in that messy business. "I think we met in passing, perhaps our units crossed paths or we saw each other at briefings."


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@Pasion Pasiva

We’ve been invited to a wedding. I believe you know the groom quite well, actually. Emperor Corvinus Melisende? It seems he and his lovely bride has finally decided to make their union official in the ways of old. You see, my love? My desire to have you as my wife is not some sleight against you, some great vengeance I am enacting for the sole sake of your misery. It is simply the way of things.

Yes, yes. Of course I am quite aware of your sordid past with the human emperor.

What do you mean ‘how’? Do you know how many years I have spent combing through the memories of your blood, Gabriela? You may keep your lips sealed tight, les’ to curse my name or beg for my mercy, but your blood, oh, how it sings so sweetly to me.

But what good does that do us here, now? In spite of our theological differences, the nature of our two great empires is practically identical. He is a powerful ally, even if only in the regard of a mutual respect between our nations. What happened between you is in the past, my love; a past that has been long-since dead and buried. You are mine now, and just as I would no sooner disrespect his most beloved, believe me when I say that Corvinus will repay me that same kindness.

Hmph, I thought you might choose to be a disagreeable brat. What if I said I would be willing to reassess your return to Orisia, if you were to do this one thing for me?

Attend the wedding with me, my love. Laugh and dance and sing with me; show our aggressive neighbors that we are united, happy, even if only for the night. Let us announce our pregnancy to the world and show them we are awash with pleasure and bliss for it. Do this, and I shall have you off to Orisia the same night we return to the Red City. I’ll not follow you immediately as to give you the space you desire, nor shall my agents stalk your halls. You will be free of my presence, of my cruel love, for a time.

Mm, yes, I thought you might reconsider.


Ravenspire was a modern marvel, by far one of the more advanced cities Raphael had visited during his stay in Valucre. Even during his time in Terrenus, when first he found his little princess skulking about the Devil’s ruinous city, the land seemed more heavily skewed by mysticism and religious zeal. Driven by their emperor’s intense fascinations and wild curiosities, the Red City had made astounding progress in its own technological revolution; but it was abundantly clear the Kadian Empire was, as Raphael always imagined, at the helm, pushing the forefront forward.

“Such strange devices,” the emperor cooed to his beloved cousin, posed close at his side. A strong arm coiled around her, fingers dripping methodically on the swell of her hip. Every so often, he pressed the tapered end of a fingernail harder into billowing fabric of her dress, hooking its end beneath the edge of an unseen band along her thigh. Then he pulled, ever so slightly, until it snapped back into place with a barely audible slap. Whereas Corvinus slipping his arm around Leoa’s hips was a rare display of affection between the two, the gesture was considerably tamed for the two Orisian vampyres. Raphael was a passionate man, one that saw neither offense nor shame in the liberties he took to express his delight.

Gabriela’s attire was undeniably modest when compared her more recent fashion endeavors at the behest of her emperor. The dress was flowing, elegant, and quite beautiful in the way it accentuated the woman’s filling figure. It was, in many weeks, the most clothed she’d been in quite some time.

Dipping his chin, the Eastern Emperor pressed his lips to the corner of her mouth in a flirtatious kiss, then drew his lips over Gabriela’s cheek, brushing her skin with the fullness of his beard. “I’ve always been fond of how technologically driven our neighbors are,” he whispered into her ear, a sense of amazement lilting his baritone. “I enjoy pieces of it, yes, for its applicability. There appears to be no limit to how useful all of this”—he gestured to the grand hall surrounding them, and the city abroad—“can be, especially to a growing nation. But still, I find myself better suited for the ways of old.”

Raphael stood in mottled corroboration of his words, donning a simple suit of umbral black underpinned with an almost glaring white, all at once modern and notably antique. His form-fitting ensemble brandished no mark of his status or affiliation, appeared no more expensive than the countless others suits and dresses sifting about the halls. Were it not for his red eyes, darker than settled blood and his pastel, inhumanly perfect skin, the elder would have appeared a normal man.

“You don’t seem to be pleased,” the elder noted with another snap of the band along her thigh. “Is something wrong?”

Gabriela’s golden eyes were dark, nearly amber with all the things she wouldn’t dare say. Instead, she settled for the obvious. “They’re staring,” she whispered. “It’s unsettling.”

A cursory glance proved her accusation true, but still Raphael smiled, and he continued to stroke the length of her thigh without reservation. “But of course,” he replied in their native Atitlan tongue. “They’re just humans, Gabriela. They’re staring because never in their lives have they seen a creature as beautiful and magnificent as you. Bathe in their awe or pay them no mind, but do not let it bother or unnerve you, my sweet love,” he insisted, tenderly kissing the lobe of her ear. “Remember what awaits you at the end of this little gathering should you behave as a good wife ought to.

Turning his attention away, he searched the crowd for their esteemed hosts. His encompassing gaze caught sight of Rou, first—stunning as always, even when garbed in a more simplistic investment of attire—and then the handsome man at her side, no doubt bitten by the sly desert cobra and slowly succumbing to her venom. Corvinus was being all but dragged to the dance floor by a small, darling sprite of a girl, while his wife remained comfortably behind. “Let us give the bride some good company for a while,” Raphael suggested as, with a light squeeze to Gabriela’s hip, he eased her into stride. “I’m eager to see how she receives the news of our gift.”

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@Aleksei @King @Pasion Pasiva @MelonHead

Julius watched from the tables as the guests entered and mingled with one another, from here he had a bird's eye view. He was able to pick out Desmond as he approached Dilon and Elodie. He had to exert some effort in hiding his amusement as Deiter seemed to take the initiative and approach a shapely and exotic beauty. Usually he was the one approached, granted that was mostly due to his mother throwing noble ladies at him.

What kept his interest was the entrance of the Emperor and Empress of the Arcane East. Blue eyes regarding them with curiosity, he had heard of them, and had an idea of his father's history with them, particularly with the eastern empress. He waited momentarily until they met his gaze and gave a apologetic smile along with a light bow of greeting. Save for the blonde hair and blue eyes, he was an exact likeness to his father.

He returned from his thoughts as one of the wait staff whispered in his ear. Eyes scanned in the direction of the chittering stranger in the brown cloak, eating like a savage. A TEMPLAR gave a slight nod, confirming that the creature was non-human. Any other time, no round would be spared to put the creature down, it was only on strict orders that they kept their weapons holstered. For now. No reason to panic and endanger the rest of the guests, not when a better measure coukd be used to keep from spoiling the celebration.

He moved quickly to Rosalind's side, his usual friendliness more controlled and he acted on his authority of being the Ecclessiarch. He leaned close to her, it might even look intimate to onlookers. Rumours have already spread, he had known as much from the whispers around him, the sneers of Rosalind's sisters, and the fleeting expression of anger. He had often though she looked extremely pretty when angry.

He first whispered a summary of what was going on, willing to let more rumors fly so long as it protected the integrity of the celebrarions. "Have your sisters begin surround it, direct the guests view away subtly. You and I will make an attempt at diplomacy, pray to the Emperor that it is amenable to reason. Then we can hopefully lead the creature to the gardens before too much attention is drawn."

His breath carressed the soft pale skin of her neck. He almost got distracted in following the line of her jaw. Absentmindedly he had placed his hand on her arm firmly but not roughly. To anyone else, it might have seemed the rumors were true that the prince favored the girl. In truth he did, though if he had been trying to be truly intimate he was sure it would have ended awkwardly. "Once they're in position we will make our move."

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Suddenly, as the looming presence neared ever closer, the sound of Taiko drum's could be heard as the travelling party would come into view of Ravenspire. Over all, the party as a whole seemed a little small to put off such a great chaotic aura as it did. Five foot soldiers lead by a captain headed the group. Other than the captain's helm, their armor was all incredibly similar, boasting a make of plate armor reminiscent of the noble warriors from a world beyond this one. These mundane men each carried the traditional wear of a Katana and a Wakizashi handily strapped to their left hips respectively. The captain himself had in addition upon his back, a Nodachi with it's handle protruding to above his right shoulder. Seven warriors that were advertised visually as being made of the tougher stuff stood in a formation around a golden ornate palaquin, boasting closed curtains that only hinted at the silhouette of two people within. These seven warriors stood with one to the front, two to each side, and two in the back, closer to each respective flank. Oddly enough, the palaquin at first glance had no carriers to ferry it. Though upon further inspection, one would notice that it was supported from below by what could only be explained as three pairs of dark clouds evenly spread apart; Each hosting a red arm which reached to the ground, allowing them to work with walking hands in unison to ferry the palaquin to it's destination. Further to the sides of the formation, there were three Spelleaters on each. They sailed ghastly through the air, making no movement that was unwanted just like the rest of the party. To the back were six more foot soldiers in reverse fashion to those at the head of the march. Last but not least, came the three taiko drummers consisting of a couple and their daughter. This strange small family made their living on these drums previously, and now their great skill was put to work for the rising Sovereign and his beautiful wife. The drums would find their end approximately when the party came to a halt just inside the city limits. Fortunately, most of the area was emptied in lieu of the couple to be's arrival to the public eye. This left the arriving power couple a little more room to breath as they left the comfort of their ride.

An ebony scaled hand with lurid talons pierced the parting of the golden curtains blocking direct visage inside and out of the palaquin. Dragging the curtain from his path, the proclaimed Chijono Heika would expose himself to the open world for the first time since his arrival to the Midlands of Genesaris. Not like most had any idea just whom he or his wife were, who and what they came from for that matter. Once he stood erect outside of the palaquin, his pale human arm would most to hold the same curtain the black scaly had previously. His draconic limb was now offered palm up for his companion to take on her way out to join her husband, her Emperor. As this happened, the seven guardsmen maintained their positions, the six total spell eaters form a perimeter around those seven, and the foot soldiers would fall into a single unit lead by their captain. The Akateko carrying the palaquin would remain until the moment She allowed them to be relieved of their duty. They were creatures from a realm much closer to her than him after all. Despite him wearing mainly black in contrast to his wife's red, their golden accents reflected each others garments, not to mention the black accents throughout his Empress' robe. The golden dragon embroidered into the black fabric of his robe was one unique to him, his clan, and his growing Empire. It boasted a third eye upon the lower portion of it's forehead. The flags waved by the drummers would host the middle and tallest of their clans KamonKokuryu no Kibo (The Black Dragon Scale). The shorter flag carried by the larger woman of the drummers boasted simply a flag embroidered with the Kanji that represented the clans name, Datsuzoku. Though they had no clue who those to be wed were, nor anyone of importance that might be in attendance as well, but this young power couple had to seize opportunities like this when they came about, especially through way of invitation. Despite their current lack of presence, the fact that they were invited alone was enough to affirm Koji that his name and presence was spreading, and that it would only be a matter of time before all would know it.

@Akako Akari

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The enigmatic man in grey proceeded out of the hall. He nodded to anyone who stared him in the eye. He didn't need to watch the insect scarf down cake to know what they would do. It would be what ever was nessary to remove the problem with as little disruption as possible.  Besides he didn't like being watched in here. He was trying to "enjoy" a party. Unfortunately parties weren't really his big speciality. He took a deep bow to the two newly weds as he passed them by. This was due to his exit from the hall. He went up to somewhere with a nice view he watched the procession from the top of the wall. He was pretty sure he knew who  these people were and their place of origin. The culture of Asia had been one of Earth's favorite relics. Weeabos fawning over Japan and China having the world's greats population. The question was, were these people from that now lost far away place, or was it their Archetic that inspired them? Perhpase the first emporor was from earth and just continued the Ming Dynasty?  Of course there were many other ways to explain the semblance of the two empires, one simply being coincidence. It seemed they'd put much effort into their first impression and making their appearance. He could only wonder if those Japense blades weeaboos were fond of had been improved or if they were the crappy versions that were historically accurate? It didn't much matter to him as he'd rather not have to find out. 

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Skitt was almost lost to the sweet sensation of spongey pudding filling his complex and in some ways overdeveloped tastebuds. To an insect, and by extension, an insectoid, something with such calorific content was beyond beautific to the senses. Skitt was constantly hungry because he metabolised so quickly, powering the growth and regrowth of his alien body, and his appreciation of food was tempered by an evolutionary disposition towards those foods that would serve as the most effective fuel. In other words, he found the cake fucking delicious. So delicious in fact, that he might have been taken unawares by the women carefully surrounding him, closing off his exit points. He had, after all, been expecting the armed males to apprehend him and when they had shown no sign of doing so actually thought he was going to get away with consuming the whole pudding!


Fortunately for him perhaps, one of the small figurines above the cake had fallen as the structural integrity of the entire thing began to crumble due to the insectoid ruthlessly carving a cave out of the lower layers with his greedy hands. He had caught the falling decorative rather deftly in one clawed hand, pausing to regard the miniature of the man that was favourite to the Queen, and was in the process of putting it in his pincered mouth and munching on it when he caught the sideways glance of an approaching woman. His bug eyes roaved around, spotting more of the women with similar intent, his instincts alerting him to the trap forming around him. The head broke off the miniature and fell to the ground as he crunched through the body, and for a moment, time stopped.


Slowly, ever so slowly, like a quickdraw in a western Skitt had never seen, his hand reached down. Further, and further, until his claws clasped around… a particularly choice piece of cake. Almost mockingly, he raised it to his pincers in plain view of one of the approaching woman, leaving no doubt that he had seen her, and pushed it into his mouth. Then, looking up frequently to check their positions, he just went right back to eating. If they weren’t going to attack him immediately, he figured he might as well keep feasting on the delicious mountain of sugar.



Edited by MelonHead

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Still outside, meandering about The Gardens, Arklar tried to isolate the scent of his companion amongst all the others.  There were so many fragrant flowers, fragrant people, and the scent of many kinds of food also filled the air.  This all worked to mask the trail Skitt had left behind, but given enough time Arklar would eventually sniff it out.  For now, he decided to make use of his other senses and tools.  Namely the ability to ask questions.  He squatted in a bush to wait for someone to pass.  He couldn't very well just walk up to people as they seemed to be avoiding him.

A woman and a man happened near Arklar's hiding spot some moments later, oblivious to the imposing seven-foot tall shaman.  His snakelike scales slithered out behind the pair, and he stood to his full height.  His body blocked out the sun from the pair, causing them to turn, startled.  The man and woman both gasped, but quickly tried to save face.

"Oh, sorry, we didn't see you there."  The woman said as she fanned herself with her hand.  She seemed the more reasonable of the pair as the man had put up his fists out of instinct.  Arklar merely snorted at him.  "C-can we help you with something?"  She asked, eager to back away from the reptilian-looking meat mountain.

" A Hunchback, about ye' high."  Arklar replied, holding out a hand at roughly Skitt's height when he was in disguise.  "He will be cloaked, sneaking about."  Arklar pantomimed Skitt's mannerisms to the pair, holding his hands like a pair of mantis pincers and shuffling about with his knees bent.  "Like so.  Seen him?"

It took a moment for the pair to recover from stifling their own laughter.  On the one hand they didn't want to offend the imposing figure before them, but on the other, they couldn't take him terribly serious either.

"Yes, I think we did see him.  He's in there."  She answered, pointing to the building.  It wasn't unlikely that she'd have been lying since compared to the rest of the party Skitt would have looked quite out of place.  He'd have been somewhat easier to remember than another generic man in a suit.


Arklar sighed as he turned to look where she pointed.  He had suspected as much, but now he was certain that he had to wade into this wedding reception in full.

"Thank."  Arklar offered as he started jogging off.

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In the time since Irae had thrown the confetti onto the newly married couple, he had freaked out as he was met with actions directly for him, thus completely ignoring the insult to his god and his wife, and then disappeared. Into a broom closet, more specifically. And it was there that he could be found resting on his knees, all of his clothing except for his underwear folded and rested neatly in a corner on the floor of the closet.

Sclup, skrrip, blop, blop, blop. It was all the man could do to stop himself from screaming out as he yanked roughly on one of the cilice belts, the curved metal of the belts ripping his flesh and muscle to shreds while letting blood flow freely to the ground. Ragged flesh hung from where he tore himself apart with the belts, breath ragged as he prayed during the pain.

"Oh Emperor, I beg of you, forgive me my sins. I am nothing but a means to carry out your will. I beg of you, grant me the power to complete your will, to combat the heretic, the mutant, the abomination." The prayer was punctuated by the man yanking on the cilice belt, tearing the flesh and muscle worse and letting more blood flow from his body and onto the ground, pooling around and on his knees. While he wasn't screaming, he was letting out muffled grunts of pain.

"May my death serve you. I will slay your foes, even as my life leaves my body. After I have died, may my soul serve you, aiding your protection against corruption and The Great Maw." Crrrip, glorp. As he spoke his hands had switched to the other cilice belt, yanking on it to rip flesh and muscle on the other side, joining the other cilice belt in the amount of flesh and muscle ripped with the single yank. By this point the blood pool was almost leaving the entrance way to the closet, but it didn't just yet. It was going to be a few more minutes before it did.

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Behind the golden curtains, a sheer shimmer that whispered against the wind, a young demoness and her lord sat hand in hand. Kimi leaned into her husband’s side with a satisfied sigh. The constant thrum of their energy was a calming balm. There had been no time to rest between the erection of His dynasty, to the consummation of their marriage, and the swift attempts to bear an heir of purely their blood. Only time would tell if Kimi would be the first to conceive as her Lord was attempting with his concubines as well with Kimi instructing who was most fertile when. Needless to say, the empress was looking forward to a celebration, a moment to relax and enjoy her husband in a neutral setting where they could banter without the fear of being pulled away for their responsibilities.

The palanquin came to a stop and Koji slipped out of the golden curtains like water. Kimi watched with ever observant crimson eyes and appreciated each subtle movement from the shuffle of his silk to prevent wrinkles, to his draconic hand piercing the part in the curtain. The empress shifted her extravagant dress and reached out to her husband’s hand with a perfectly red manicured hand. Her gaze held his as her fingertips rested into his palm and she gracefully stepped from her perch. Her ebony locks fluttered in the wind and her hair ornaments chimed prettily like tiny bells.

Kimi easily settled into her place by her husband’s side and her expression steeled as she looked to those in her order. With a gentle motion of her free hand, the Akateko were relieved of their duty. The palanquin was lowered and those carrying it retreated to the shadows to await their Lady’s orders. She would be the new Lady of the Void soon enough and the creatures of the Void were well aware of her cruelty in comparison to her mother’s. Though she looked innocent with childish features and a youthful radiance with wide red eyes, the young demon was much madder than her mother, Akako.

“Sia Ith, si huven ekess tafiaf wer aesthyr ekess qe rumaga.”

The draconic slid from her tongue with practiced ease. Her voice was like warmed velvet as she spoke lowly to her husband making an immediate request. Of course, she knew he would oblige her as soon as he were able. In the meantime, Kimi wanted to make sure he enjoyed himself. She turned towards him in a smooth motion and tilted her chin up. Her lashes batted and she knew that he would be pleased with her show of submission. The empress would only make requests of her husband, anyone else it would be a demand.

@Al Sa-her

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Yolo went to the back of the bar where he had a massive mixing canister of water,alcohol and Z-C3 mixing away but not enough "mabye I should add more" he grabbed for one of 6 other small bottles though unnoticed by him the one he grabbed was full of goop and not the white powder " the-" the slime hopped out onto the floor and burrowed itself into the ground under the building "???" He thought as he read the nonexistent lable "I'll just ignore that" thats when he saw an insect like creature eating from the cake exept when he went for it...

Something began pulling him...restricting him from running (you shouldn't do that little one) "who said that" he said as he grabbed for his gun setting it to taser for now (I am the all knowing one, we will meet again soon) then suddenly he became free falling to the ground then he saw it, it was a pale gray vine thing that returned into the ground leaving no marks behind  "hey Hurt you wouldn't happen to know anything about a gray vine creature would you?" He said in his comm

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The air within Valence Hall was saturated with polite laughter, warm light, flower petals, and most notably, the smell of alcohol, but, despite the delights, Wren Sheppard was decidedly miserable. Aloof to the merriment, he paced back and forth through the crowd on three legs, his cane tapping the ground with distressing frequency: thump. "Pardon me." Thump, thump. "Excuse me, madam." Thump. "Sir, I beg your pardon." Thump, thump, thump. Each second without her felt like an eternity, and many eternities had passed since he had last seen his princess, Cosima Nora Melisende. 

The princess had been swept up by her family in the excitement of the wedding ceremony, which Wren had anticipated. He hadn't been particularly worried for her safety; even a madman would have hesitated to slight the Melisende family in full force, let alone attack. However, the Melisende children had taken after their mother in that each one of them was nothing less than a gracious host, and immediately following the ceremony they had dispersed into the reception like water running through a bed of stones. Alone in a crowd of hundreds, perhaps thousands, Cosima needed his protection, yet she was nowhere to be found. 

The monotonous sea of black and white clothing didn't exactly help his cause. Wren frowned as he passed a woman with a tangle of dark curls, having mistaken her for Cosima from a distance; the solider continued to make errors as he hobbled through the crowds with polite haste, with each additional mistake adding to his impossible frustration. Across the richly decorated hall, his bonded dragon Cricket shifted uncomfortably in her seat, feeling her rider's distress though unable to help him. Wren requested that his dragon be present during the reception, as she had severe separation anxiety, though she had been commanded to sit and stay during the festivities to avoid causing a ruckus. Cricket was as much a part of the decor as the banners or chandeliers, with flowers and ribbons braided into an ornate harness that shimmered as she fidgeted. Guests admired her as they passed by, with a few braver individuals even daring to approach her for a quick pat or poke. Cricket didn't seem to mind; outside of battle she was a gentle creature, and was too preoccupied by her rider's pacing to bother with the occasional annoyance. 

Though he would never consciously admit it, Wren also sought Cosima for his own selfish comfort. He felt starkly out of place in a hall filled with noble men and women, although Cosima had taken a sick delight in finding him an outfit suitable for the occasion. He sported clean black trousers tucked into freshly polished knee-high boots, and a black jacket decorated with golden leaves buttoned over a black vest and crisp white shirt. His neck felt constricted by the bowtie tied snugly around it, though the rest of the ensemble was slightly loose; the princess had done well in estimating his size, but the clothes were still a tad large- bless her. Although he blended in relatively well, the soldier felt oddly exposed by his suit, almost as though he were wearing nothing at all. While normally he was able to melt into the background like good bodyguards tend to do, tonight he felt curious eyes probing everywhere. Cosima's presence would not only divert the attention, but reassure him of his purpose, providing a clean niche for him to settle into for the night: bodyguard. Solider.


Wren politely declined a glass of champagne as he continued to look for something sweeter. 

Edited by roboblu

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She moved through the crowd quietly with the exception of the clicks of her gold stilettoes as her heels collided with expensive flooring. This was like a dream. A royal wedding, flower petals falling from seemingly nowhere and everywhere only heightened the sense of wonder for the young woman. She wore a dress that she made herself, black with a high front slit and with occasional black embellishments that caught the light and glittered prettily. Everything she wore was inexpensive and hand made. Even her heels had been painted gold to make them look expensive. She wore no jewelry and her chin length black hair was partially braided. Despite her lack of money, she managed to blend in with the upper class. Not a single person gave her a second look as she wandered, curious blue eyes taking in everything in awe.

From the corner of her eye she caught something wondrous move. Adeline turned her head and stopped, breath caught in her throat as she stared at a dragon. The petite young woman slowly ventured closer, a smile curling glossed lips as her black scales shimmered. Adeline imagined if she were a dragon, this was what she might look like. Her jet black hair and bright blue eyes were so similar to the dragon that she eased up to.

A healthy amount of respect bubbled in her chest as her hand reached out, delicate fingers brushed over cool scales and she let out a sudden breath as anxiety eased. “Ava'yorn, si mi Adeline.” Self-taught draconic was spoken near perfection, though there was a hesitation in her voice. There was no telling if the dragon before her would understand, but Adeline hoped that her new friend would understand her meaning based on her gentle tone and pleasant fluctuation. “Wux re vorel.” She finished with a smile. Both of her hands gently smoothed over the dragon’s jowls. Perhaps Adeline was a fool for blindly trusting such a dangerous creature, but if this dragon was allowed to be here, surely she was someone’s companion and well enough behaved. Still, it was foolish, but the woman’s curiosity and sense of childlike wonder urged her on.


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There was so much of her past life that she didn’t remember. Sometimes it felt like a curse, and other times, like when she saw the glimmer of dark and twisted amusement on Raphael's face, she knew it was a blessing. Whatever he saw in her blood was one of those memories that her former self had never bothered writing down, and so the extent of her sordid past with Corvinus was only the few things she had read and heard about. Corvinus had been one of Roen’s knights, she met him when she was first taken to Patia against her will. He had shown her the city, taken her to stand at the foot of the great cathedral dedicated to Roen’s strange goddess, and then after that, he’d taken her to a drink in a tavern. No one, in all of her life, had ever made her feel quite so normal. Her name, her title -- it had never mattered to that man she on that strange night, and carried away by a whim born of a strange affection, she had asked him to leave Roen and go to Orisia. The rest was a sad history, and one that seemed to have repeated over and over again with many different people. Corvinus had attempted to dissuade the Black Queen from pursuing the abominable affections that were growing for the devil, and when she had not been able to follow the sage advice, he left. That’s all she knew, that’s all she chose to believe now. Whatever dark and ugly thing Raphael had seen, she didn’t care to pry, even if it was her secret.  Even so, she found herself nervous now that they had entered the large, glittering gallery that was already quite full of guests, laughter, and music. If everything had been so simple, and the disagreement so small, why had she and Corvinus never spoken again after his departure…


“Such strange devices,” said her cousin, who was standing at her side and holding her close with a strong arm coiled about her small form. He had picked an elegant gown for her, something that seemed far more modest than she ever imagined he would allow her to wear. A simple strapless bodice in white silk, fitted but not tight, with a full skirt of the same material that flared out just above her hips. And to accentuate her waist, and the growing belly she now carried, a charming bow was bound right above her stomach. She had been full of suspicion when she saw the dress, and it was with good cause. The dress itself was modest, simple, and elegant, in a pristine shade of white, but what she was wearing beneath was anything but. And Raphael seemed utterly unwilling to allow her to forget that under her pretty vener she had been dressed as nothing more than a concubine. He dug his fingers against the side of her thigh until he found the strap of her stocking and snapped it against her flesh. Freshly fed from his vein, a soft and ever so pale blush rose in her cheeks. His delight was her total humiliation.


“Strange devices indeed…” she whispered, her voice barely audiable as she brought her hands forward and together to rest just below the bow on her belly. Her heart was thundering. It seemed her discomfort was the sort of display that Raphael could not resist. He bent his head and kissed the corner of her lips, and then her cheek. It was a sweet display, anyone might think so -- but to her the heat of his lips was as good as a brand, and her mouth was colored because of it in turn. Her usually pale lips were nearly red, but that had mostly to do with how he had devoured her mouth just moments before they entered the party.


There were more whispers. He was talking to her privately, telling her about his thoughts and perhaps ideas. The elder seemed seduced by the technology he was seeing, and he wanted to share -- but it was hard to focus with his blood running thick and strong in her veins, and while his hands roamed up and down her naked arm.


“...But still, I find myself better suited for the ways of old.”


Golden eyes looked up at him as her pretty face tilted in his direction. She was, as always, a breathtaking beauty, more so with the delicate brush of color on her cheeks and the blood-red of her lips. There was a way her chest rose and fell, it seemed quite exaggerated, but she was trying to catch her breath. Much has changed, not just in the relationship between her and her cousin. Physical changes were well under way. Her breasts were fuller now, and they were bit into by the material of the sheer corset that she was wearing under the dress. He had picked lingerie for her, but had selected sizes that were more appropriate to her body before the pregnancy. Now it felt as if her breasts were about to fall out of the very small cups of her corset. If she didn’t manage to calm her breathing she was going to suffer a rather embarrassing wardrobe malfunction. She shifted uncomfortably as he pulled her closer to his side, and she felt the tug of the garter belt and the pull of the straps that fell down over her thighs and held up her thigh-high stockings. Every move she made, and every breath she took, was a delicate reminder of what was to come after the party -- the fond farewell that Raphael had promised her. At this thought, and just as Raphael snapped her stocking again, she felt all of her body clench up and was reminded that his ability to humiliate her knew no bounds. She was wearing a pair of underwear, if they could even be called that, which cruelly went up the cleft of her bottom.


Why in the world would anyone wear this to feel sexy?


“You don’t seem to be pleased. Is something wrong.”




“They’re staring. It’s unsettling.”


Yes -- people had stopped to stare. She didn’t know if it was because of Raphael, he was quite the striking figure, or if it was because they could all but see the outline of what she was wearing underneath and they found her ridiculous. Maybe it was because they recognized her, and the laughter and whispers were nothing more than the ridicule of seeing the Black Queen come back to life. This was total agony. She did not want to be here.


“...Remember what awaits you at the end of this little gathering should you behave as a good wife ought to.”


Her bottom lip trembled and those glorious eyes of hers welled up with tears. Of course she didn’t let a single one shed, but she couldn’t break her gaze from his. And much to her horror he drank in the sight of her misery and sadness, sipping at it with a growing smile that again made her heart race. He was a wolf and she was a lamb -- but did any creature feel this much excitement before being slaughtered?


“Yes darling…” she smiled weakly before reaching up, settling her small hands on his chest, and planting a sweet kiss on his cheek. “I remember.”


She didn’t notice Rou, or the way Raphael looked at her. Her eyes had turned to the dance floor where she saw Corvinus -- for the first time in years. She couldn’t remember him, not his face, not his body, not a thing, but still she knew exactly who he was. And watching him dance with the small child brought the first sincere smile to her face.


Raphael squeezed her hip and she nearly lost her footing against him, but he caught her and pushed her forward into a walk.


“Let us give the bride some good company for a while. I’m eager to see how she receives the news of our gift.”


“Our gift?” she asked, falling into step besides him.


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cntCfTv.png@roboblu @StarlingBird



Cosima smiled sweetly at the young Duke? or was it, uhm,Regent? She kind of forgot because she can't really concentrate,too focused was she on his smile. Are men supposed to have such a smile? His lips were awfully full, almost like a woman's, and his eyes were pleasantly set apart with a aquiline nose that is strangely attractive? Maybe that's not the right word for it though - distracting feels a little more appropriate. He was considerably handsome, but she had immediately decided to roam the hills of his face when he started to talk about his worth. 

Understandable, she gets it and can kind of appreciate it at the basic level. There's something lofty hanging above her head and attached to her name is a title most would appreciate. To be approached by such men as this one is not unusual, just a tad annoying when you're trying to enjoy the festivities. He had been kind, spoke to her sweetly, even leaned in close enough so his breath touched her ear, yet none of this was wooing or the in the slightest appreciated. One must play a part though, and that part today is a gracious princess eager to listen and be appreciative of her company.

When he began to make a delightful speech about how it's hard to leave her be but he must go because there's someone waiting and he will return and he hates to offend, she snapped back into reality

"Please, no, go right ahead! No, thank you, you're too kind."

His lips took in her knuckles; they gently cascaded across her skin and peppered kisses down to the tips of her fingers. The action was intimate, one that actually  made her tip her head in curiosity. It didn't offend her (maybe it should have), leaving him to feel encouraged when she said and did nothing in return. Giving her hand one final good-bye squeeze, the gentleman departed, drowned out by the sea of bodies. 

Standing up (disturbing the array of fine glass and drinks on the table) she looked above the heads of the fierce crowd. Frustrated and bit on edge herself, she let out an exasperated sigh when she did not see what she so desperately sought. It had been a mistake to allow herself to be pushed into the array of beautiful people. 

The people at the table looked at her strangely, even whispered something about the wildness in her eyes and the grim set of her tender lips (thank you, father). None of it concerned her; she could have their heads removed if she so wished it. Thankfully this event will be bloodshed free and she will not be the one to ruin the union of her parents, especially since it's something they've looked forward to. 

Reaction took over and thought quickly left. Gathering the dark skirts of her dress, she stood up on a chair; shocked and awe gasps left onlookers lips. Someone holding a tray of sweet, sweet wine looked like he was about to grab the young woman by her hand, but something held him back. Cosima waved anyone else wanting to assist her down with a jeweled hand, annoyed that they thought she needed help and also because it was taking too long to find Wren.


She yelled his name over the crowd while waving her arms enthusiastically in the air. The waiter from before then grabbed one of her arms and helped her down, something she did appreciate because she had felt herself get off balance during her excitement. Giving a parting wave and a bow to the people at the table, also the waiter who looked briefly familiar, she rushed through the stream of people who barely had time to get out of the hurried princesses way. 

"Wren! I'm so sorry!"

Cosima hadn't intended to take so damn long, especially when she knew and understood how uncomfortable he and Cricket would be.

One of the reasons she had picked out his clothes for the event was so they could match! Her dark dress swept the ground underneath her in an array of soft fabrics; the jacket she wore was identical to his own from the golden threads to the flourished design. The small crown atop her head was nearly unnoticeable under her famous curls, which were swirled about her prim shoulders and proper back.

"I didn't mean to take so long."

Unceremoniously and predictably, she threw her arms around his neck in a tight hug. At first it had been a awkward gesture, but she had melted that away with her enthusiastic ways and genuine ability to be outwardly friendly with anyone. Once she was satisfied, she pushed him at arm's length and looked him over - dark eyes shimmered appreciatively. All this, her lack of bashfulness, manners, one-sightedness, eagerness, and happiness, comes from her mother. 

"Look how handsome! And Cricket? Where is she?"

Edited by Aleksei

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Olympia had a handful of dress in her small hand as she led her father to the middle of the dancefloor.

She has been practicing for many, many hours; honing her skill as a nimble dancer so that she could do this one thing and this one thing only. Lyonene had been the one to suggest the dance and at first Olympia had laughed - her father dance? Next they're going to tell her the man can sing and play some instrument; a ridiculous rush of imagined images had flashed before her eyes, making the idea even more ridiculous. But Lyonene was firm and meaningful when she explained that their mother and father had danced at least once in their relationship.

Now it's her time to test her father's metal! The swordsman will certainly have clean and steady steps, will easily lead her about the floor as there's very little to her person to have to guide. The teen has a refreshing smile of youth tantalizing her happy face, further accentuating the likeness of her father. Both dark in hair and eyes, but the smile was certainly a gift from her mother. Still young, there was much room for her to grow; eventually she will be as tall as her mother, and she won't have to lean back so far to look up at her father.

"Congratulations papa!"

Lyonene still called him papa, so did Darim, Novalie, and when Isolde wanted something. As is the course of many things, his daughters nearly worshipped the ground he walked upon and often pushed his buttons, again, to test how far they're capable of getting away with things. Olympia has yet to find a reason to truly push their father's patience, and was often teased to being more of a proper lady than Darim - who is the epitome of perfection amongst her sisters. Oly sees no problem with this, especially if it makes her more special than the rest.

Releasing her handful of white fabric, she expanded her arms and put one hand in his and the other on his forearm; the space between them is kept formal and appropriate, though she hopes it's enough that he doesn't step on her dress. Wearing white made her nervous that everything and anything is going to get spilled on it, thus ruining the pretty piece. Not only did she have to protect her dress, but the elaborate display of jewels sitting atop her dark head and circling her small throat. He'd notice they're items taken from her mother's personal collection, maybe a gift from him to her, or maybe something she got herself. 

"Are you happy?"

A question she usually asks him, not because she can't see his happiness, but because she likes it when he expresses it. Something about him saying yes or no gave her reassurance that everything is okay. Maybe it's because she only knows stories about the war and has only seen the images in her teachings, not being there meant she is left to allow her thoughts to roam and it scared her to think that maybe that all could happen again. His happiness and her mother's happiness means a whole lot to the young lady. 

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