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Wanderlost

[Baaj Island] The Golden Coronation

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Long was it, for a tropical island to take shape in a world of magic and monsters. Longer still, Baaj remained unknown, even to the ships that flew overhead. Natives lived as tribes, separated on grounds of gods and traditions. There were hundreds of smaller tribes on the small little mass of land surrounding the volcano at first. Over time, diplomacy and advancement lessened the number until tribes started gaining reputations. The Paoa, the Owaiiki, the Kamalani and the Maoa being the most prominent names in their history, they had discussed unification as a distant consideration beyond the occasional counsel their leaders had held in the years before the Scarlet Rule, but the idea had been enforced by their arrival. All in all, the leaders were placid, even to the dissatisfaction of some of their kin, when their arrival had come with the demand of such unity. Being mostly elderly and wise enough to see past the issue of an invasive force assuming control, those leaders had consented to it, seeing it as an ultimate victory, despite the upset that came with it. 

The introduction of foreign economy and conflict might not have been as welcome if they were not so quick to resign, and perhaps those who opposed the Scarlet Rule might have had more hope in reclaiming their solitude with their leadership, but such was not the case. The argument about their warrior-regent's reception of a foreign dignitary landing on the beach in the night not long ago had seen infinite faces to a coin, and he'd heard double that number of complaints during his tasks outside his manor on the mountainside in the time leading up to Malligard Luxon, his second advisor's selection of a Prince and Princess for Baaj Island, and who better than the children of leaders of the two greatest tribes the island had seen? Though he had taken his time, the man's intellect shone forth once more. Finally, he might see peace in his tasks. At least for a time... He wasn't sure what measures would need to be taken if this act was unsuccessful and the people remained unsatisfied. 

But nonetheless, Malligard and all his plump glory stood to Soris's left, and on his right, Thorald Fauri, his first advisor, held a stately manner that even a regent such as he might come to envy. There were others, as Soris spoke, who sat behind him. Members of his government that only some small groups had truly heard the right rumors to know the names and titles to: Ferrin, Praucia, Fallan, Maximus, and Pan. The only natives who could be sure were the two standing behind the curtains, waiting for their introduction. Kealohilani and Poema, those who were to be named as Prince and Princess of the island beneath the Rule. They had been briefed about them as those that they would be reporting to, though Thorald was the one intended to receive and distribute their reports excluding emergency. 

The temple of the Baajan priests of Kue'asari had been turned into a gorgeous hall, completely adorned in gold-woven fabrics and vibrant silvers and dark greens and reds, amounting to one of the most lavish things Soris might have ever seen. The pillars hardly seemed to be visual obstructions, more as works of art wrapped in works of art. More to look at than one might have seen otherwise. Which was fortunate, he had considered opening the golden beach to the public for the event, but a light yet warm rain and an early dusk outside would have spoiled the scene which, instead, was lit with bright braziers and comprised of brilliant construction. It had all come together according to some measure of fortune or fate that he was quick to discount as coincidence. There were more important things at hand.

Soris's speech had been lengthy. Definitely the sort where one might question whether the intention was to make the audience of the Golden Coronation wait, swishing their wine in their glasses, for the festivities to begin. It culminated in the recital, spoken loud and clear over the crowd despite lack of a technological implement to assist his volume: "Thus have you been gathered. Not quite so grand as the Red Queen herself might have seen, of course, in celebration of a final declaration in the vein of summation, so that we might see an end to what strife has laden our journey from this uneasy malaise, to an era of prosperity. We hope to see a new demeanor held among our citizens. Happiness and comfort. We are here to protect, and much as we serve the Scarlet Rule, I want you to know that me and mine," He said with a gesture to the officials arrayed about him, "Are here to serve you. And so, without further ado, we come to the conclusion we've been leading up to. There are two of yours here today, who I mean to seat as two of mine. We shall bring the meaning of being a Baajan and the meaning of being a citizen of the Scarlet Rule closer together, and soon, you will come to learn that those two definitions are synonymous." His smile was fake, but so very well practiced. Only officials who had made similar speeches might have marked it as such. Otherwise, he just looked prideful in all that he had accomplished as regent. And speaking of practice, about half of it had gone into the pronunciation of their names. "Poema Kamalani shall now be titled Princess of Baaj Island! And so shall her successors, favoring females of her blood, inherit her title so long as Baaj's banners are Red. And like do we see the new title of Kealohilani Paoa, Prince of Baaj Island, whose title shall be inherited by his successors, favoring males of his blood, until the Scarlet is the color of the beaches, and not the flags!" He finished, gloriously as intended, with his hands in the air, inciting a sense of triumph which coaxed more supportive woos from the crowd than expected, amounting in a supportive cacophony. That was a good sign toward the fortune of their decision. "Thank you, all of you, for coming here today and partaking in the grandeur of this event! Let it be known that the Rule is strong, and it shall serve as a foundation for Baajan prosperity long as at least I, Soris Talra, can hold a sword." He finished his speech with an image in his mind of glorious vanity, defending the name of Red's kingdom even after she had died, holding Baaj island as a last bastion in her memory.

He turned around at the podium, and the Prince and Princess recognized their queue to step out from behind the curtain, parading waves and recognition from the back of the stage to its end, and into the crowd to signal the beginning of the night's revelry. Soris held a glass of golden liquid in the air and said his last words as his officials filed out into the open space to make way for the band and its handlers assembling behind him. "Have a good night, everyone!" And he downed the glass before making way, and finding his stubborn path to the long table of great catered delights, inviting those who chose to beg his audience to accompany him. 

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Risa Isawaki found herself on vacation.

She deserved it. Although she still technically represented the interests of the Order of Force Majeure, James told her to treat her visit to Baaj Island as a getaway, to have fun, not think about the kitchen back at the Bastion, and oh, try not to hold a grudge with the Scarlet Ruler Red Yusuke over their draw so many moons ago.

Hence, the slender sorceress found herself flitting from table to table, cooing over the food and mentally taking notes on new recipes and how to improve her existing culinary abilities. Her usual silken, white and gold embroidered garb was perfectly suited to the tropical atmosphere, at once both open and sexy, yet classy. High pale stockings and grey, golden boots rounded out her outfit, gracefully set with matching pieces of golden jewelry; bangles, necklace, and a rose hairclip.

Edited by Fierach

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While most people would probably feel nervous about what was about to happen, Poema only felt impatient, and perhaps a little too calm. Clearing her throat, she slowly smoothed the silky, flowing fabric that spread from an empire waistline in an expanse of deep forest green. The crowd could be heard from behind the curtain, but she was essentially alone with the Prince, Kealohilani Paoa. They were from separate ends of the island—of course, Poema had heard his name before and knew who he was—the chieftains did meet with each other frequently before the Scarlet Reign.

Gold, although the color of the beautiful coasts and most of the decorations of the coronation, had never flattered Poema’s complexion. Therefore, it was absent of her ensemble of deep blues and dark greens that constructed her long, gauzy dress, hanging onto her shoulders only by two straps—there were sleeves, but they were purely ornamental and hung from the olive flesh of her arms. Matching slippers were on her feet, and she shifted uncomfortably from one foot to the other for a moment, the only gesture breaking her cool. The slippers were better than most shoes, as she always had to fight the urge to tear sandals and boots off and throw them as far into the trees as she possibly could.

Intricate pearl earrings hung from her ears, brushing her neck every time she moved her head, but she was devoid of other jewelry; instead, she had a wreath of beautiful white orchids around her neck. After all, any other accessories on top of her new title would probably seem garish, vain even. The villagers had insisted that this celebration be massive, and from what Poema had seen of the room outside, it even rivaled the grandiose decorations of Kue’asari’s Holy Day.

She glanced at Kealohilani Paoa, who seemed absorbed in his own thoughts and concerns. She had never met him this directly, and now she would be expected to work with him for the foreseeable future. Finding nothing to say at the moment, she looked forward again expectantly.

I will formally introduce myself later. He must already know who I am. But I hope he too is concerned for our people under the rule of this Queen… Soris’s voice was muffled by the heavy curtain, and Poema was thankful. Although, I doubt Soris would have selected him as Prince of Baaj if he thought we would not get along, ideologically or otherwise. The regent had asked her opinion of what he should discuss in the speech, but Poema had considered such a lengthy explanation a formality. Everyone knew why they were there, why drag it out? At least Soris had taken that tidbit of advice to heart, seeing as he did not speak for long.

As the lull in Soris’s probably dry speech ended, Poema straightened her back and emerged from the curtain first, a wide smile pasted on her face. She waved slightly to the crowd, mostly a crowd of well-dressed Baajan’s, wearing many wreaths of flowers around their necks and shimmering feathers in their hair, with a small speckling of foreigners—as this was a diplomatic event, most tourists chose to spend the afternoon on the beach or in their luxury inns. What tourist came to Baaj to worry about politics?

First, Poema bowed to the crowd, and then curtsied for Soris Talra. Even such a small gesture showed how she had to straddle two opposing cultures to please everyone. But her smooth face expertly hid the worry and racing thoughts she had about the future of her people and homeland. Right now, it was the Princess’s job to smile and look pretty, and to greet all the dignitaries politely.

Although, I would not turn down a few cocktails first. She was not exactly a fan of drinking, but it was a celebration. A celebration for her and Paoa. She was supposed to take the arm of the Prince about now, despite their social distance, at least just for the next moment or two. A symbol of bringing the ends of the island together, Poema supposed. Soris had been insistent on such a small detail.

She stood behind the podium for a moment, letting Soris descend first, as he was her superior. After people started chatting, however, she would step down and begin a long night of mingling with Baajans wishing her well, detailing their concerns, and foreigners saying how nice it was to have a “real Baajan” in the government. Poema resisted the impulse to sigh heavily.

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Titian as soon as she was done talking she overheard talk about a grand corornation happening at the temple on Baaj'rik volcano, so she hurried to request a much better room, a luxury room.

The next day she when over to the temple dressed the same (she doesnt like to expose herself) and went on to seek to the food and see if it was up to standard, which it was

She saw someone else doing the same and decided to indulge in some conversation "So how many nobles do you think came?" @Fierach

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@aphrodite

Many years ago, Kealohi had watched from a distance as his father sat on a log on the beach, staring blankly into the waves with his toes buried in the sand. It was shortly after his mother had died, so the teen had understood why his father would still be mourning, but after hours and hours of watching the chief just ... sit there, motionless, blank eyes following the horizon, Kea had been utterly perplexed. After a minute or two his ancient great-aunt came to join him, and the two watched their beloved chief as his ankles slipped beneath the rising tide. "He's alone on an island," she had said in a hushed, weary voice. Kealohi hadn't understood what she'd meant at the time. 

He understood now. 

Sitting behind a curtain on the stage of the Kue'asari, Kealohi couldn't help but review the impossible task before him over and over again. He had been selected to serve under the Scarlet Queen as a "Governing Liason," as Soris had called it. From Kea's point of view, he was essentially a familiar, likable figurehead set in place to placate the Baajan people while the invaders tightened their grip on the island. There was nothing the man wanted to do more than stand up and rip that golden curtain aside, tearing apart the glimmering facade; he yearned to yell at the assembled crowd for welcoming the wolves into their pasture. Alas, the Islanders were a naturally peaceful folk, and had been genuinely pleased to see two of their own offered a place in the new government. They had gone to extravagant lengths to decorate the Kue'asari temple with gold and flowers and richly-colored fabrics; anything for an excuse to celebrate, his grandmother had said with a wink earlier in the week. Even his father, the proud Akamu Paoa, had given his begrudging approval of the ceremony, a break from the unusual silence he'd been keeping throughout the invasion.

Only his brother Tehnu was similarly unsettled by the whole affair. The two had discussed it in great detail over the course of the past few weeks, and Tehnu's reluctant advice that Kealohi take the position was what had finally pushed Kea to accept. "We'll need one of ours in the room," his brother had said, the frown looking out-of-place on his typically handsome, bright face. Eventually Kea agreed, and now here he was, sitting behind a curtain with a veritable stranger from across the island, but still feeling very much alone. 

Kealohi listened to Soris's short speech with careful attention, memorizing the words that were turning his island inside-out. His dark face drained of color at mention of scarlet beaches, though the crowd responded with a sort of macabre applause. Then, too soon, their moment had arrived, with Poema was taking graceful steps around the curtain and leaving Kea with no choice but to follow. He offered a deep bow to the crowd with his hands on his hips, a customary sign of respect in his tribe, then offered a similar gesture to Soris. As the regent wrapped up his speech, the new prince couldn't help but scan the crowd for familiar faces, his face long and unsmiling as he counted dignitary after dignitary in attendance. He did manage to spot Tehnu and his father, who were standing together near the front of the hall. While Tehnu had a big grin on his face, Akamu's face was as stoic as his eldest's, and in his eyes Kealohi saw a singular message: play along. Do your duty. Protect our people. 

The prince nodded slightly, and took a step toward Poema with his arm extended for the taking. They made a dazzling pair. He, too, wore a traditional dress (after Soris had refused to let him walk shirtless, as was typical for his tribe) that draped over one shoulder and exposed half of his chest, tattoos swirling in and out of view across his dark skin. The fabric was soft and light, and was dyed in rich reds and yellows and oranges; together he and Poema displayed all the colors of their island. Flowers were braided into his long, black hair, and a crown of leaves and fresh blooms rested precariously atop his head. A simple leather throng about his neck carried a carved likeness of his totem, which, with any luck, would protect him from particularly obtrusive guests this evening. 

Once the pair had descended down the staircase and into the celebration, Kealohi thought he felt a little more comfortable speaking with the princess. Turning toward her with just the hint of a humorless smile, he began their relationship with a single soft but weighted phrase: "I think I need a drink."

Edited by roboblu

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On ‎9‎/‎7‎/‎2017 at 8:01 PM, Hurttoto said:

Titian as soon as she was done talking she overheard talk about a grand corornation happening at the temple on Baaj'rik volcano, so she hurried to request a much better room, a luxury room.

The next day she when over to the temple dressed the same (she doesnt like to expose herself) and went on to seek to the food and see if it was up to standard, which it was

She saw someone else doing the same and decided to indulge in some conversation "So how many nobles do you think came?" @Fierach

At the sound of somebody addressing her, Risa turned around... into the mid section of a woman much taller then her.

It might seem comedic any onlooker as the sorceress craned her neck up look up at Titian, both hands occupied by skewers of grilled shrimp and seafood, whilst still chewing on the succulent delights she had previously sampled. 

After a moment's more chewing, and then with an audible gulping, she would reply to the other lady. "Quite a few I think, but none quite so imposing as you. How tall are you? 8 feet? 9 feet?"

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She wasn’t really supposed to be here, at least she wasn’t supposed to be here unless she had one of her guards near, but that didn’t stop her from taking an impromptu vacation to her prestigious resort Island for the first time since she’d convinced the leaders to swear fealty to the Scarlet Rule. Avvercus should have been with her, but she’d told him she didn’t intend to go to the coronation of the Prince and Princess. It was a formality, one that Soris had thought of in order to make this transition much more peaceful for the natives of Baaj. Queen Red had agreed, she didn’t want to end up making this land acquisition a hostile takeover, not in the least. These were now her people as well, it was her duty to make sure they were as comfortable as possible.

 

Red had shown up when she was sure nobody would be watching the skies, when the majority of the natives and officials from the Region were busy making their speeches and everyone else was rapt with the speeches or the shiny crowns. She’d flown in on her prized gryphon, the very gryphon that stood proud in front of a red shield and crossed black swords that signified the Scarlet Regions Sigil. He was special, he was connected to the Queen through a bond that was ever eternal, so long as each lived. Landing softly behind the temple, out of sight and mind, Red quietly slid from the back of the gentle beast and gave his shoulder a few pats. “I won’t be long, friend. Stay out of sight. I don’t want anyone to know I’m here, least of all dressed like this.”

 

The Queen had full intention of staying out of sight, and the long, very long flight from Terrenus was in no way meant to be taken in a dress. She wore traveling pants, dark crimson tanned leather with her lace up boots. Her blouse was somewhat fashionable, but it took the appearance of something a lower Lady may wear during a birthday party. With flowing white sleeves and a short matching crimson corset that hugged her rib-cage, she was very under-dressed for the occasion. Most of this was hidden beneath a large, red greatcoat. Heavy as could be, pockets lined with trinkets and random odds and ends of small objects, it was warm as Hell; Which was ironic considering this was the devils greatcoat, smelling of citrus, smoke, quenching iron, peat and spice. It was buttoned, the trip across the sea had been a chilled one, flying on the back of a beast traveling quicker than ships or submarines alike could, Red knew the cold would have been the end of her healthy streak. Over the coat was a black cloak, the cowl lined with wolves fur, the bottom of the cloth easily sweeping across the ground as she walked.

 

Giving Nxyau one last pat, the woman pinched the hem of the cowl and flipped it over her head, letting it droop enough to hide her facial features as she rounded the temple and sneaking inside, unseen. The speeches had already begun, and it seemed everyone was mingling nicely thus far, a welcome sight considering Red hadn’t known what to expect fully. Slipping past everyone with her head lowered, she quietly wove and picked her way through the crowd directly to the very back of the temple, her fingers deftly slipping around the neck of a bottle of rum as she swept by one of the tables. It disappeared beneath the cloak as quick as it had been snagged, the exposed fingers if anyone would have seen were clad in black finger-less gloves save for the pointer and index, which were fully covered in the leather. They were a bow wielders gloves, and frankly the most comfortable pair she owned.

 

From there she was quick to find a seat against one of the walls, a lonely chair next to a pillar that afforded her to be unseen from the long buffet table everyone seemed to be gathering around. Picking up a leg, she crossed it above her opposite knee and relaxed back against the chairs back, pulling out the bottle of rum she’d pillaged and popping the cap free. This is where she would remain for the majority of the Coronation, watching as nothing more than a shadow the event to cement her rule in the Baaj Islands.

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@roboblu

“Yes, a drink does sounds lovely.” Poema responded. Her accent was much more purposeful than most Baajans. Her mentor had always insisted on the importance of enunciation and proper pronunciation. She was positive that all her lessons of reciting poetry did not help, either. Maybe she did know this man well, but at least they were stuck in these positions of keeping up appearances together.

Her silvery white hair hung loose over her shoulders, pinned back with fuchsia orchids along her temples. A strand had escaped the arrangement and so she reached up to push it back behind her ear as she neared the table where the majority of the food and drink was located—some guests already started in on the harder liquors, but Poema was not much of a drinker.

Just a couple glasses of wine to take the edge off. I would hate to lose my head when in the midst of such an important crowd, she strategically reminded herself. Drink in excess will be saved for when I am at home with Mother and Father.

Taking a cup and ladling some spiced wine into it, she handed it to Kealohi before serving herself. After all, now was the time for keeping up social rituals of Baaj as well as Terrenus. Turning to face him, her electric green irises met his honey brown orbs. Unsure of exactly how to proceed, she decided to speak first.

“I do not believe that we have formally met. I am Poema Kamalani, daughter of Manuku and Kona, of the Akahi tribe.” She extended a soft hand from the folds of her ceremonial garb, her palm parallel to the floor, in favor of a more traditional greeting. In harmony to her formality, a polite smile curved Peoma’s lips into the slightest of crescent moon, and she turned to face Kealohi. “And I suppose I am now Princess of the Baajan island as well.”

It would not be a lie to say that she was intensely curious about him. The Akahi and the Mahinalani had been friendly for decades, but other than the feast days, they did not have much contact in everyday life. There was much they did not understand about each other, but would most likely have to learn in order to establish a proper diplomatic relationship, particularly in the face of the newly minted Scarlet Rule. For example, the formal dress he wore showed a great deal of his tattoos, but Poema had no doubt that they continued beyond the boundaries of the orange and red fabric.

There were none on her skin, even though it was rather standard practice in her tribe as well. Miss Mahina insisted they were outdated, vulgar even, and although her parents had not cared one way or another, Poema had decided to save them for when she felt she deserved the expressions of power and devotion on her body. From what she understood, the Mahinalani had few reservations about covering the body in an arrangement of tattoos after members came of age.

"Those are beautiful tattoos." She commented simply, gesturing at the piece on his arm in an attempt at making a sociable exchange.

Although it was easy enough to introduce herself, Poema was at a loss at what to say next, despite her years of training in what was essentially ceremonial chit-chat. However, a conversation with the newly crowned Prince seemed more attractive of an option than discussion with the random honored guests that filled the hall.

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It was surprise that lifted the regent's brow as he came to the table. The only person who'd approached him and cared to stay long enough for him to see to the food was Ferrin Thane. One of his own officials, and he didn't quite approach so much as shadow. Soris was meandering along the table, picking out bits of the more familiar-looking dishes. It was a while before he stopped and turned to the man. "What is it, man?" He asked.

He was met with those cool, calculating, and somehow strangely compassionate eyes he had come to hate from the man. Ferrin had led a great uprising when undead had taken over his home town and some other surrounding villages. It had taken him time to gather the things he needed, but when he led his men in revolt, his leadership had been commended by all. It was fortune that this all took place not far from Port Caelum, because he had refused his election as mayor, saying he was more fit to lead an army than a town, and chose to reside as captain of a rather small guard force, befitting of the size of the town. Soris had invited the man to spar with him during his visit. Unusually, the man seemed to favor the scythe as his weapon of choice, but he seemed capable with many different weapons. He'd drawn the practice out as long as he could, for then as now, the man was refreshing to have around. Then, because the man was almost as good as he was and put up a good fight, and now because he wasn't the only fighter stuffed into extravagant finery.

"A regent needs his guard, no?" The man asked, earning an incredulous frown from Soris, which seemed to amuse Ferrin, if only slightly. "What?"

"A regent needs his space--you're here in case some sort of lich king or something decides to make an appearance." He was further refreshed by how easily a more comfortable form of communication settled between them, but had no time for it. He was supposed to be approachable during this event. It wasn't often he had time to mingle with the less busy folk, so he waved away his Head of Security.

A laugh drew his attention into the crowd and prompted a bow back to his plate. Malligard wasn't far off, sharing pleasantries with Maximus Wells, who saw to the prosperity of the many restaurants and other food industries on the island. 

Well, perhaps Soris would take this strange lapse in visitors to enjoy a bite to eat, then offer himself up once more. He went to the corner, seeking seclusion for his meal, and nearly jumped out of his skin as he came nearer his seats. Bundled up in all manner of unnecessary winter garments was the Red Queen herself. Which was strange, given that he'd received word that she hadn't meant to attend the event. He refrained from a bow deep as she deserved, assuming her presence in such wear had a clandestine intent, and took advantage of that line of thought to tease her, however inappropriate it might have been. "Lady." He called her, and took a seat by her side. 

He wouldn't be there long, as he would surely attract attention at some point, but they would probably have time enough for him to eat and a short exchange. That would be nice. His mailings obviously hadn't reached her. Some assistant of hers handled the communications, he was sure, but that had resulted in a rather frustrating silence as he awaited her reply on the matter of Captain Titian's trade deal. Still, that wasn't what he spoke on after setting down the chicken leg he was working on and wiping his fingers thoroughly on a napkin. "Mm. Excellent sauces they make here." He swallowed, took a slow sip of wine, and started the conversation. "Do you like what you see?" He left it at a simple question, prompting the Queen to answer as she may.

@Red the Ambivalent

Edited by Wanderlost

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"Queen."

Was the simple retort at first, although not expecting anyone to recognize her in such covered garb, the idea that Soris had indeed noticed her without hesitation had been a bit of a surprise for the Scarlet Queen. She made no forward motions, nothing that may give her away to such small surprise over his recognition. The Queen simply lifted the newly opened bottle of liquor to her lips and offered herself a generous drink of the alcoholic contents, a silent shiver from the wonderful proof it burned down her throat.

While he dropped the conversation into short tones, curious over her thoughts of the small party; She assumed his welcomed decision to appoint a couple of the locals into the Baaj'an royalty, a simple nod could be seen from the shadowed figure beneath the cowl. "I didn't intent to interrupt, Lord Soris. I was curious is all, and it is in my best interest to insure my charges are fairing well with their new positions." Red kept her words simple, without elaboration she could afford the ability to keep the conversation short and to the point without anyone eavesdropping and coming to the realization that their Queen was hiding in the background.e

There was much and more on the blondes mind this day, and there would be more traveling ahead while the Scarlet Region gathered its footing beneath itself. Many more tireless nights and sleepless hours, she was being as intricate with her new standing as possible. There wouldn't be a doubt soon enough that the young psion had a good grip on her standing within Valucre, and each person ruling beneath her would learn to trust and adore her; At least she dearly hoped.

@Wanderlost

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"Well." Soris waved his hand over the crowd. "As you can see, your charge's charge is seen to." There was more on the man's plate, but he set it to the side of his chair. He'd eaten enough to tide him over until he could entertain a proper meal in private. Further, the food was more for the guests, as he could dine on such things on his own time. "At least, we're doing our best. You gave me a rather quiet... Charge." He was talking, but hadn't gotten to the point he wished to bring to bear. "I have a foreign noble staying. Interested in a trade deal--food for fuel or something. Should I send them your way, or have you any interest in the first place? I sent a messenger, but I'm guessing they didn't get to you before you got to me." 

He'd been thinking over what to say to her, but it seemed he was busier running his island than pleasing his queen, though the former should ensure the latter. There were many affairs on his mind that were not worth busying the mind of the Red Queen. Things he would take care of. Foremost was the condition of the relationship between the Scarlet Region and the natives of Baaj. This coronation would help sate many of those who were upset. He hoped some of the more adamant protesters might come to see that they truly were there to help, but again, none of that needed to be spoken of. Not until it was a problem, and he would root out and crush the resistance before he went whining for help, which was something he was sure his advisor would approve of. Good too that he had little to discuss with her at the time, since the plan was still to leave her be soon as was polite.

His eyes followed his newly appointed officials through the crowd as they made their way to the buffet. People congratulated them as they passed, which pleased him, and they seemed to be getting on well enough. He just hoped they would be open as they should be to conversation with their citizens, newly deigned subjects, as that was a large part of the intent of the coronation. Though he supposed, they would have plenty of time in their shifts on their thrones. 

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