• Event • The Mummer's Ball

Seated on the shores of Lake Lovalus, Rharne serves as the home of the Lighting Knights, the Thunder Priestesses, and the Merchant's guild. This beautiful trade city is filled with a happy and contented people who rarely need an excuse to party.

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Seira Shiryu
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Re: The Mummer's Ball

Wed Oct 28, 2020 6:26 am

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Seira was glad that they had all decided to have their dresses sent up to the ball rather than wearing them to the ball. Between the rain that was falling and the ride in the carriage, it would be awfully difficult to avoid messing something up had they chosen the latter. The ride to the ball was a short one, and that was a good thing for Seira's nerves. Although she was used to the more causal parties and get togethers that her friends were always getting involved in, formal parties such as this one were a very different story. The twins had never been to one before, and the last thing that Seira wanted to do was to do something that would embarrass her mother. Seri felt much the same way. A life on the streets of Rynmere before they had been adopted wasn't exactly good practice for something like this. And even though that had been arcs ago, catching up with the school that they had missed while fending for themselves, and joining the Lightning Knights as initiates were also not the types of experiences that would prepare them for something like this. Despite all of that, the chance to see a play was appealing, and Seira thought that she and her sister would have fun tonight...provided that they didn't do something to screw things up and embarrass themselves and their mother horribly.

"Is there anything we should know about tonight?" Seira asked her mother, wanting to get an idea of what to expect.

"Things we should do, or not do that we need to know about?" she added a few trills later.

"Are we going to mess things up if we don't curtsy properly, or something?" Seri asked nervously.

"Because I don't know how to do any of that sort of thing..."

Neither of them did. They weren't nobles, after all. What if they were expected to act like the nobles did back in Rynmere while they were at this party?

When they arrived, the twins got dressed up as quickly as they could. Neither of the girls were comfortable wearing fancy clothes, but the dresses they had gotten were far easier to manage than they had feared they would be. And the shoes they had chosen were comfortable ones. Nothing like the high heeled monstrosities they saw some of the other guests wearing. How anyone could manage to balance while wearing such things, Seira would never understand. Still...to each their own. It wasn't her feet that would be suffering. Seira and Seri both politely refused the offer of face painting. They hadn't worn any such thing in the past, and to do so now would make them feel even more out of place and uncomfortable than they did now.

Seira and Seri paid close attention to everything that Betsy said. You had to leave if you couldn't find a dance partner in the first round? What if you didn't know how to dance at all? Or if you didn't want to dance? Was dancing really mandatory? And if so...why? People danced at balls, sure, but this was more than just that. It was a play, and getting together to socialize...

The twins exchanged glances. Neither Seira nor Seri had high hopes of finding a partner. But Seira supposed that it wasn't completely impossible. Betsy had mentioned that some of the students who were attending the school were willing to serve as dance partners to those that couldn't find any on their own. Seira hoped that they wouldn't mind dancing with someone who didn't have the first clue how to dance. Proper etiquette was mentioned again, and Seira once again found herself wondering what proper etiquette for a party like this was. Men bowed, she was pretty sure. And women had to curtsy? Or was that only to the king? To nobles of a greater rank? Rharne didn't even have a king or any nobles. Did that mean that men didn't have to bow to anyone? More than ever, Seira hoped that she and Seri would somehow manage not to embarrass themselves.

The rule about finding a group of four or five to eat with seemed strange to Seira too. But as she glanced at her sister, and her mother, she was relieved in the fact that they would only need to find one more person to have the group they needed. The instructions seemed clear enough even if they did seem strange, so neither Seira nor Seri asked Betsy any questions.

Seira watched as her mother told the person who was announcing people to the other guests to announce her as Constable Vivian Shiryu. Then it was her turn...and she had no idea what to tell the announcer. Was she supposed to use the title of Knight Initiate since that what she and Seri were? Or would that sound like they were bragging since they weren't really Lightning Knights yet. Maybe it would be better to go with the title of "Miss?"

By the time she could decide what to do, her mother had moved into the ballroom, and two others had moved past them, one of which looked vaguely familiar. Seira was pretty sure she had seen one of the woman at Storm's Edge, but they had never met. They couldn't stay where they were forever, so Seira and Seri approached the announcer.

"I'm Miss Seira Shiryu, and this is my sister Miss Seriel Shiryu." Seira said quietly.

"Miss Seira Shiryu, and Miss Seriel Shiryu." the announcer called out.

Seira and Seri hurried after their mother. She told them that they could mingle if they wanted to, but Seira was out of her depth enough that she wasn't comfortable enough to go off on her own. She would likely say the wrong thing to the wrong person, or not curtsy properly, or something, and offend someone horribly. A quick glance at Seri told her that Seri was even more reluctant to go and mingle than she was. They weren't little kids anymore, but at least for now, they were more comfortable sticking with someone that they knew.

"Do you think we should dance with each other?" Seira asked her sister quietly.

Seri shook her head.

"No, that would probably look weird. Besides...neither of us can dance, remember? If we have to dance, then we're going to need someone who knows what they're doing to show us what to do."



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Re: The Mummer's Ball

Sun Nov 01, 2020 5:21 pm

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Question and Answer
Betsy was sharing whispers with another of the students that was to attend the ball, and smirking behind a fan when Yeva approached her with the first question, asking what sort of entertainment and recreation they could expect.

"We'll be keeping score of how many men you step on with those boots of yours, of course!" Betsy led the laughter of her hangers-on at Yeva's expense, but then the woman smiled in faux reassurance, "Oh don't worry, we have janitors on hand to mop up any dust you kick up while dancing."

Having said this, Betsy displayed a strange mingling of disappointment and satisfaction that nobody asked her questions besides Yeva. She would've so loved the opportunity to bring another of the guests down to size, but it wasn't in the fates.

Introductions
Besides the people who'd already been introduced, there were a few who entered after the main crowd of Rharne. There were several foreigners attending even, who apparently were on vacation, business, or the like.

Tasha and Elmo entered, and after a whispered word from Tasha, the announcer gave their names and titles, which grated Elmo to no end. "Tasha of Strosdyn, and Elmo of Ivorian."

Next, Sasia entered. She wore a green mask, with an elaborately decorated dress of orange satin, slashed by cream trim. She was accompanied by an unremarkable man in a orange mask, with orange hair himself. There was some grumblings among the Rharneans about letting a Red into the Glass Quarter, but most left him alone as they entered.

"Lady Sasia and Lord Feldras."

Next to enter was a man that Gennadiya might recognize, as being the same man who'd entered Faith's boutique with her. He wore a white suit, with a light blue trim. His hair was somewhat tousled and roughly kept, and his eyebrows were rather bushy. He was introduced as, "Lesley of Viden."

The next pair to enter was a kind-faced blond woman, rather tall, and a dark-skinned and complected man with handsome features, who was rather well-built. He wore a cloud gray suit, while the woman came in with cloth of gold gown. She looked out of sorts, by the way she walked, as if unused to such attire.

"Lady Selese and Lord Richard."

Thus all introductions were made and had, and there were no others besides these guests to announce.


Enter Madame Leona
About a break and a half after people had time to settle in, maybe enjoy some punch and small bits of food, and introduce each other more intimately, trumpets lightly blared from the performance stage, as Leona entered their midst.

She had tanned skin, brown hair with blonde highlights. She had a dancerly figure, and wore a simple cream dress with cloth of gold trim. On her eyes, was a lion mask. She smiled at all of them, but her eyes lingered perhaps a moment longer than they should've on Arlo, Vega, and Tasha.

She looked at them only a trill longer than the others, but soon shook herself out of reverie, to address the crowd. "I'm very pleased to receive you all here, to our Pageant. As the estimable Betsy must have told you, there's a certain schedule to the night...

For the first bit, introductions aside, hello! I'm Madame Leona."
She smiled warmly at the crowd, and then continued, "Now that that's out of the way, let's begin with what you can expect. There will be dancing to start out the next hour, and you can participate or not as is your wish. You can socialize and enjoy the refreshment we've provided."

Betsy was there at the entrance to the Ballroom, and huffed at the ruining of her game with the guests. She rather enjoyed tormenting them with anxiety that they'd have to find a partner or risk expulsion.

"There will be music to dance to, of course. Provided by the wonderful Mistress of Instruments, Cecily." Leona smiled back at the posh woman that sat by the piano. Then she turned to face the crowd once more. "After you've had some time to unwind and received your dinner seating and entrees, we'll be performing one of our short plays for you. Just an informal production, you're free to talk amongst yourselves and whoever you end up seated with for dinner."

"After that, we'll have a final round of dancing, which will be led by the estimable Killi. Speaking of whom... If you wish for a tutorial on certain steps and dances, she will be available to teach you. Now please, enjoy the eevening, I hope you all will..."

This said, Leona walked down to the crowd, and joined the rest of them in waiting for Killi to show them some basic dance steps.

Killi strode out onto the stage, where she'd been standing near Cecily. She led the group in a short tutorial of how to dance. "Now don't worry, friends..." Said Killi, "If you can move your legs or arms, you can dance."

"The important thing, is to find someone you can keep pace with, and try not to step on their feet. Just go with the flow, as the music does, and don't dance too close if you're not very confident, as that's a very good way to step on your partner's feet."

So having said that, Killi went through a number of basic dance moves, both slow partner dances, and solo flourishes. By the end of the demonstration, most of the people present would've felt confident to repeat those baisc steps, whichever was their inclination.

Thus the Pageant had begun.
 ! Message from: Pig Boy
You're free to post up to five times to each pc before the next stage in the event. You can interact with the NPCs, but not control them. I am controlling all NPCs that are not your own personal ones.

I may post reactions of my NPCs to the various happenings as we go, until the event progresses. That depends largely on the activity here.

Can do:

Admire the wall panels.
Eat food.
Drink Punch.
Dance with others.
Socialize.

Must do: Post at least once.


Regardless, I will post again in about 10 days.
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Vega
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Re: The Mummer's Ball

Mon Nov 02, 2020 2:13 am

61st Vhalar, 720:
Round 2: Post 1
Q & A

Vega had no questions to ask, but then she heard Betsy's answer to someone else. She turned around and looked at Betsy and a deep frown crossed her face. "That's jus' rude," she said, looking at the woman. "An' I'd say that someone whose job it is to make people feel welcome should try an' do that. Or are you irritated that you won't be dancin'? Or that you're not invited? Either way, love, if you haven't got nothin' nice to say?" Vega, ever the subtle one, gave the best advice she had. "Then do us all a favour an' shut your gob. Because that kind of nasty is beneath anyone. Unless they're the lowest of the low. If you're that? Then just shut your gob anyhow." That said, Vega shook her head. "An' I plan on kickin' up a lot of dust when I dance love. So you put yer frilly cap on an' keep your mop handy."

And with that, she turned and walked away. Life, after all, was too short to spend time talking to useless people.


Introductions

Vega didn't know the people here, and as the introductions happened she largely zoned out. The thing that she did focus on was the grumbling from people about a red-haired person. When she heard a grumble, she turned and glared at the people doing the grumbling. Vega, who had all the subtlety and social graces of a well-aimed brick, spoke in the general direction of the complaints. Sadly for her, she did it just as they introduced the person she'd be genuinely interested in seeing - her husband. Nonetheless, it still probably wouldn't have stopped her. "What's the world comin' to, eh? They're lettin' bigoted asshats into formal balls an' accepting their vile grumblin's based on the colour of someone's hair. If ignorance ain't curable, you bunch of dweebs are terminal."

More and more, Vega was starting to think that staying here was something that she just shouldn't do. She didn't have airs and graces, couldn't fit in here. Yes, she'd been told she should attend but Vega suddenly started to think - what would they do if she left? Would they fire her from the Lightning Knights? If they did - then that just meant that they were people she didn't want to work for. But then, she caught sight of Doran and she made sure that she spoke with him. Somehow, it seemed important to her that he knew; as far as she was able to tell him; that Xiur knew and really didn't hold it against him.



Madam Leona

People talked and chatted - Vega chatted to Doran, and then there was more mingling. She could see it happening and Vega knew that - as soon as she saw people leaning heads one into the other, touching hands, being together. She knew that - if she looked at that she'd get even more testy because Vega missed her husband. But then, she did hear, and see, a familiar face Cecily - who had taught Vega the piano. Vega decided, in that moment, that she was going to be the change she wanted to see in this bunch of pompous pompedy-pomps and she moved over to where the musicians were. After askingPigs gave permission for me to get one, Vega got one of the spare violins and, as Killi taught, Vega played. Gently, quietly, and then increasing in volume as Killi got people trying moves.

If asked, Vega would have said that she did it because she had no wish to talk to anyone, didn't want to get engaged in chatter. More than anything, Vega would have said, it was because she didn't want to be here. But in truth, Vega played because she knew that, when she did, people were better and more confident at what they did. So, it meant that the people here would have a better time, that they'd be able to be with each other and have fun and - more than anything - she could be on her own, Vega kept her eyes closed and kept playing.
ability used
Although Vega is Tier 2 with the fiddle, this is her GM ability. It states:
"Song of Hope: Vega has developed her ability to the point that she can use sound as a means of increasing the skills of those around her. Her devotion to Xiur and Qylios is such that she is determined to be hopeful, and to always do her best. She can play and, when she plays, it gives a boost to the skills of those who hear it. When Vega focuses on a group and actively uses this ability - she is able to inspire them to be the very best version of themselves. Any and all who are in the room / area where she plays (so not someone that hears it in passing, they have to be listening) have a +1 level bonus on a non-magic skill for the next trial (so, novice becomes competent, competent becomes expert etc). This skill will be directly linked to the focus Vega has so - if it is in a camp preparing for battle, for the soldiers it will be a combat skill - but the cook for that camp would gain a bonus to cooking for the troops. No more than one bonus per day can be given."
She is focusing on them dancing.

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Yeva
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Re: The Mummer's Ball

Mon Nov 02, 2020 7:42 pm

61 Vhalar, 720


'We'll be keeping score of how many men you step on with those boots of yours, of course!'

Yeva did not know what to say. Even after she made her wall to the ballroom, there was still a weight on her chest at the humiliation. How the women laughed at her so openly, she did not know how to respond in a way that vocalized her thoughts maturely. Each word, expression, mockery turned itself over in her head and she shuffled to the side of the room while her chest felt tight enough to steal all breath.

"Oh don't worry, we have janitors on hand to mop up any dust you kick up while dancing."

Her eyes closed - She wanted to say something biting back. To defend herself. But the emotion she felt was akin to a slap in the face. What had she done to deserve such scorn? Every girlish insecurity came looming back, weighting her shoulders. Rharnian instinct demanded a fight for honor. Her injured pride wanted to run home. Yeva hugged her arms close and leaned her head back, relying on gravity to hold her tears back. It did not seem to matter that Doran nodded at her, or that the familiar head of Balthazar stood out among the crowd. She did not see them, swallowed whole.

"It doesn't matter," she whispered, fanning her flaming face, "It's just words. Just.... really mean ones. You're not here for her..."

More than the rudeness, she hated how weak the spiteful woman had made her feel. Why should she care what one beast thought? What was worse was that she couldn't even argue that a man would even want to dance with her. She couldn't defend herself, or her attire. Yeva took a deep breath and rushed towards the table of bite-size appetizers, reaching for a cracker. Feeling so small, all she imagined was a mouse while she ate, although it helped to calm her, if only for a moment. While she nibbled, others were introduced.

"Tasha of Strosdyn, and Elmo of Ivorian."

She looked up. The man looked irritated by the title, but she knew nothing of either of these places. A woman named Sasia followed. Green and orange, Yeva was nearly surprised by the color choice, but then looked down at herself. Her own dress was a rich and dark green, her hair perhaps just as tangerine. Whispers about the 'Red' caused her pause, and then she realized. Wasn't it good to be back home? Yeva frowned in disappointment, shoving another cracker into her mouth. Forgive. Forget. Move on.

Feldras sounded like Faldrass, she thought, scanning the spread for something to drink. All she found was punch and wondered if it was poor form to eat so early. Did it matter? She was already failing the etiquette test, shouldn't she enjoy whatever part of the evening she could still salvage? Yeva searched for a cup, dropping a ladle into the crystal bowl. A handsome man with brows that could rival Doran's followed - did she have a thing for bushy brows? Hm.. No, not really, she decided swirling the drink as if it were more than mere juice . Lady Selese and Lord Richard were announced in grey and gold.

More beautiful people.

As Yeva's nerves calmed, she began to recognize the familiar faces she had been too upset to fully notice before. Doran made her smile and she watched him exchange pleasantries with a woman with hair like her own in a dress of billowing sunshine. Reds were everywhere, it seemed, "What's the city coming to?" she muttered sarcastically, satisfied and in serious doubt any of them would combust in flames. Truthfully, she felt proud to see others like her and clung to the feeling, managing a hopeful smile when she took her next drink.

She chewed a small cube of cheese, blinking in surprise when she noticed Balthazar. A friend! Like a drowning woman spotting a lifeline, Yeva began to dust her fingers of crumbs and grab her drink to go say hello when she noticed the woman who had caught his attention. More specifically, the outfit that left little to the imagination and caught hers. Yeva choked on the mouthful of punch, flailing for a napkin as she gasped for a clean breath, struggling not to succumb to a fit of coughs as Madam Leona drew the crowd's attention.

A few nearby attendees eyed her and stepped away while she managed the silent racking of her chest. It was a challenge, but she managed the tiniest of wheezes, catching a bit of the amended schedule. She strained to listen amidst her silent dying. Did she understand that correctly? Betsy was lying at their expense?

Yeva searched for the evil woman among the others, wondering if it was too late to convince a familiar face to somehow give the bully a taste of her own medicine. But no - that would only bring her to the same level of craven meanness. Yeva dabbed at the corner of her eyes and managed to regain a semblance of composure.

The redhead may have struggled in many areas, but the medic favored herself a competent student and a quick mind. Killi. She just needed to watch Killi.

As gorgeous music lilted across the ballroom from the woman in yellow and Yeva's breath returned, her confidence also began to grow. It was time to find a partner, for business and recreation. The show, after all, must go on.
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Doran
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Re: The Mummer's Ball

Tue Nov 03, 2020 6:45 am

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The woman that approached him and introduced herself as Vega looked vaguely familiar to the son of Ziell, even though he was positive that he had never seen her before, at least not in this world. For a moment, he just looked at her – she was tall, he noticed, almost as tall as he was, in fact, with red hair and a shimmering, almost dragon-like mark on her chest, the kind of which he had never seen before – and then he met her gaze, smiled at her and bowed slightly to her.

“I’m Doran”, he replied in a calm tone of voice, still looking at her – he never dropped his gaze either. “And I have to admit, I feel slightly out of place as well. I have never been in Rharne before. Maybe we could give each other hope”, he suggested with the same, very light grin while he continued to wonder where he had seen before. A moment later, his blue eyes widened, and he remarked, in a very soft tone of voice,

“I met you in the world of dreams. You were both my daughter and my wife at different points in time. Do you remember?” he added, his tone of voice growing even softer. She had been his daughter once upon a time, and he had tried to keep her safe from Xiur and his warriors. He had wanted to make Idalos a better place, for her. He had not wanted her to suffer like his first child that had almost died four centuries prior, as an infant, had.

He had blamed the wrong man though.

There was a lot of hate and suffering in the world, and people kept on dying, often for no reason at all; Xiur was not responsible for it though, what he had tried to do to him had been utterly despicable, and besides, there was always hope, no matter, how dark and desperate things were.

Sometimes, he wondered if he should have served him instead, like he served Syroa, or serve him now, at least, because Idalos was too beautiful to give up on it, even though it was unlikely that he would ever be forgiven for what he had done. All those things were left unspoken for the time being though because Vega might not recall any details of their shared dreams, she might not be a dreamwalker or be familiar with Emea in any way.

And besides, he was not sure if he should – or could – discuss those things in public, at least not in detail.

~~~

Doran did not pay any attention to the people around him while he talked to Vega. He did not notice Elisabeth’s or Balthazar’s announcement, although both of them were fascinating people, for different reasons. He was entirely focused on the woman from his dreams. He only stopped pondering that strange coincidence when Madame Leona appeared.

The expression on his face remained utterly calm when she mentioned the esteemed Betsy. In truth, he did not agree with anything that woman had said though. She seemed to delight in making fun of people because of their appearance or their lack of skill. She was cruel and spiteful when she should have been supportive and encouraging.

He wondered if he should have a word with her, but then he just turned away from her instead. Life was too precious to waste it on people like Betsy, and truth to be told, he was already having second thoughts about this event. He did not want to put up with such people.

He had already met enough of them in his life.

When Vega started to play, he came closer to her.

He did not say anything to the red-haired woman, but just listened to her play, with a thoughtful expression on his face. He had never heard anybody play that beautifully before, even though he had already been alive for centuries. There was something about her song that filled him with hope. A part of him wanted to tell her how touching her music was, and how much it affected to him, but it seemed wrong to interrupt her as she sat there, playing with her eyes closed.

A few moments later, his gaze fell on Yeva again, Yeva who had been treated so unfairly by Betsy before. His former student still seemed to be distraught, and anxious, when she should be smiling and having fun instead. He took two glasses of punch and moved towards her.

“Betsy shouldn’t have made fun of you like that”, he remarked in a deep tone of voice and handed one of the glasses to her while he met her gaze. “That was not right. There is nothing wrong with your boots in my opinion, and if you stepped on my feet by accident, I wouldn’t mind. If you’d like to give it a try, I would dance with you”, he offered, because his former student, the Hero of Faldrass, deserved better.

She deserved to have good memories of that evening, and a bit of hope.
word count: 861

Mutations

Crimson lines on the back of both hands.

Sesser

Ever Alluring I: The bearer has an enhanced constitution, staying strong and healthy in conditions where others would wilt and fall ill. Scars never remain, disease rarely seems to visibly touch the bearer, and he/she recovers from injuries much faster than the average member of their race. The bearer seems to age more slowly, though the effect is superficial rather than biological. In addition, everyone encountered is subconsciously attracted to the bearer, even those of incompatible sexual orientation. Those of alternate tastes may not feel compelled to flirt or pursue the marked, but the spark of incomprehensible arousal, however slight, is there all the same.

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Vivian Shiryu
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Re: The Mummer's Ball

Wed Nov 04, 2020 6:20 am

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At the kids questions, Vivian shook her head. "Not curtsying properly isn't going to mess anything up, and the only thing I'd really say to avoid is to not get drunk tonight and to not make a mess when you eat. Since neither of those are really a problem for you, I'm not that worried about it." she said, grinning slightly at them. Then, as Betsy did her little prissy routine with the one guest that had any questions, Vivian's expression froze slightly. She did, however, give a broad grin as she heard a very familiar voice start tearing into Betsy. "Well, that'll be interesting at least." she said, her voice quiet. When they passed her going into the ballroom, however, Vivian stopped to give the snobbish woman a critical look. "While I appreciate your attempt to entertain us yourself, trying to goad someone into issuing you an official challenge could prove to be quite disruptive to the festivities." she said, her tone calm before she turned to the announcer to give her name and rank.



Once they were in the ballroom, Vivian listened quietly to the rest of the introductions, cocking her head at some of the names she recognized, though when she heard the idiocy about letting a readhead into the Glass Quarter, Vivian turned to the closest heckler, a man standing close to her and the kids, if they were still with her, and gave him a flat glare. "Before you start showing your hind end in public, you might want to take yourself up to the Cathedral and educate yourself as to Ilaren's hair color, you festering idiot. Or were you planning to insult our Lady if she came to the party?" she said, a not-very-well disguised bite to her voice as she said it. Then, she turned on her heel and walked away from the idiot before she did something she would regret.



There was mingling and such, but Vivian was actually trying to find someone she thought she had recognized as they'd made their way in. Unfortunately, she'd lost track of him during the introductions, and after a quick early visit to get a snackable and something to drink, she had set off, possibly with kids in tow, to track down her quarry. Unfortunately, Vivian wasn't a tracker, so it took far, far too long to find him. Madame Leona had entered and started her speech just as she located the person she was trying to find, and she waited quietly through that, noting the sheer idiocy of their greeter as Leona explained that no, dancing was not actually mandatory. Vivian was now fairly certain that someone was going to punch Betsy before the night was through, and she wasn't entirely certain she wouldn't be doing the honors herself.

However, when Leona finished speaking, Vivian crossed the last few feet to the person she'd been looking for. "Arlo Creede, is that you?" she asked, and when, or if, he replied in the positive, she'd grin, pause to let the kids introduce themselves if they were still with her, and continue. "You know, you're a lot harder to recognize without that hat." she said, before looking up at the stage as she saw Vega starting to play the fiddle. "I gather the two of you haven't been able to meet up here yet?" she asked, her tone calm, before she shook her head. "I'll tell you what though, Vega's been a great help here." she said, before turning to Arlo. "And what about you, where've you been lately?" she asked him, her tone curious.
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Seira Shiryu
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Re: The Mummer's Ball

Thu Nov 05, 2020 6:14 am

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Seira relaxed when her mother reassured both her and Seri about curtsying. She went on to tell them that as long as they didn't get drunk or make a mess as they ate, they would be fine. She and Seri could handle that. It was one thing to get drunk when they were comfortable and safe among friends. And even that was a rare thing for the twins as they preferred not to get drunk at all. It was very much another thing entirely to do so at a place like this, and among strangers.

They heard Ranger Vega as she began talking to Betsy, and they exchanged glances. Was the ranger going to punch Betsy the way she had punched the Knight who had told them that even the Support Knights were supposed to be fighters first, and support second? Or would she challenge the woman for insulting one of the other guests? If she did, Seira believed that Betsy deserved it. She was also very glad that she hadn't asked the woman any questions.

**********************************************************

Seira and Seri followed their mother into the ballroom. They heard someone commenting about "letting redheads into the Glass Quarter." They exchanged glances, and frowned. Seira knew about the feelings about Aukari. Everyone did. But not everyone had red hair was a member of that race. Ranger Vega had red hair. For that matter, so did Ilaren herself. Did the man think that Ilaren shouldn't be allowed into the Glass Quarter just because she had red hair? It boggled the mind.

The twins had to hide grins as they listened to their mother talk to the man, and they hurried after her when she left.

*******************************************************

Their mother was clearly looking for someone, and Seira wondered who she might be looking for. She didn't ask, though. She and Seri simply followed her, looking around at the beautiful wall panels as they did so. When Madame Leona introduced herself, and began to speak, the twins paid close attention to what she had to say. Seira and Seri were deeply relieved to hear that dancing wasn't mandatory after all.

Their mother found the person she was looking for, a man she called Arlo Creede. Her words suggested that he knew Ranger Vega somehow. But the offer of dance instructions sounded interesting now that Seira and Seri knew that dancing was optional. So after greeting the man politely and introducing themselves, they told their mother where they were going, and left her to talk with her friend as they made their way over to the stage where Killi was teaching several people how to dance.

She made it sound simple. Go with the flow, and follow the music. Find a dance partner you could keep pace with, and try not to step on their feet. Don't dance too close if you're not confident because it would be easy to step on your partner's feet if you do.

Seira and Seri paid close attention as Killi taught them the basic moves for a number of dances, as well as some flourishes that looked fancy, but were probably simple enough for a complete beginner to manage. They practiced the dance moves a number of times in the attempt to get them down well enough that they could do them on their own. By the end of the lesson, they were fairly confident that they would be able to do so.

After the lesson, Seira and Seri made their way back to where they had left their mother in time for the pageant.



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Varlum
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Re: The Mummer's Ball

Thu Nov 05, 2020 4:56 pm


"So how are ya planning on fighting off all the women at the ball in that suit, stone man?" one of the other Lightning Knights, who had also been setting up with him earlier, said at his side as they finally made their way into the ball, teasing the Ithecal with a wide grin. It was rare to see Varlum in anything that wasn't simply his stone and what other protective clothing he needed for the weather. Varlum simply chuckled, looking to the crowd as they approached. "The same way I'm planning on fitting through the front door when I leave. With great difficulty" he shot back, the two sharing a laugh. Varlum's face soured a little at the memory of his last ball, trying to shake what he could of it. Dancing with Auya, being a couple that everyone stared at. An Ithecal and an Aukari dancing in a room of Rharne. Not that it mattered now, his name meant something here. It wasn't likely many people would want to start any problems, not this time. But he wouldn't forget how easily they had turned on her - and he wouldn't let it happen again.

As if on queue, the fieriest red-head he had ever met spoke up to Betsy. Looked like this wouldn't be so dull after all. "Go have fun, I'll see you around," Varlum said to his colleague reassuringly, entering the ball as his name was announced. The tall Ithecal peered over the crowds easily, mixing himself in as introductions were underway. Betsy, as it turned out, wasn't all too popular. Varlum glanced at Yeva for a trill. Harsh words like that in such a public space would hurt anyone, as it seemed it might have done to her. Vega had at least tore the miserable woman a new one. For the time being, Varlum would keep himself restrained, though his eyes pierced through his stone scales at the woman.

His silence broke rather quick, however, when the talk of red hair came around. Vivian and Vega had both said their piece, who was Varlum to be the only Faldrunborn to keep out of it? "It's not the ones with the red hair you want to watch out for" Varlum said with his usual growl of a voice, gathering the attention of anyone who hadn't noticed him before. "If you have a problem with their presence I'd be happy to take you home where there's nobody, I assume, with red hair to distract you. Though I imagine your arms will grow tired, it'd be a painfully long crawl back" he said, no veil over his threat. He was a Lightning Knight and a Warden, his job was to protect the people - this was how he intended to do it. He'd seem enough violence against the Aukari, so much so that a fellow Knight had left him for dead all in an effort to kill one Aukari. Not tonight.

Aside from that issue Varlum had stayed quiet for Madame Leona's short speech, not giving much mind to it. Dancing here, eating there - he'd go with whatever he was told to. His priority, rather, were two people - one of which quickly made herself at home with some music that made Varlum weirdly proud. She was bold, she was dangerous, she was self-assured and he loved it about her. But her music was more. It was beautiful. Vivian, it seemed, thought similarly. Varlum spotted her, some children and a man he had yet to meet conversing, making his way rather easily through the crowds.

"I hope I'm not interrupting anything" he said to his former mentor, not that he massively minded briefly disturbing his sister to say hello as the two children parted ways from the group. "Of all the places to meet you again, I was hoping for another relaxing mission, or maybe a nice coffee. Not a ball catered to the racists and pompous" he smirked, before glancing to Arlo and offering a hand. "Varlum. Lightning Knight and Warden" he said, entirely unaware that he was introducing himself to a man he had already heard plenty about.
word count: 723
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Yeva
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Re: The Mummer's Ball

Thu Nov 05, 2020 6:15 pm

61 Vhalar 720


Yeva had been observing the instruction of Killi from a modest distance, enjoying the music and trying to take Madam Leona's advice to heart. Her feet (and mucky boots), shuffled back and forth, trying to count the steps. Her chin was tucked as she watched the swishing of her skirt, one hand trying to keep the slit of her skirt more modest as she counted under her breath, another, lifting the dress slightly so she could watch her steps, "One... Two, three... No, that's not right. " she started over, finding each attempt get a bit easier as her confidence and skill grew thanks to Vega's help. But why the counting? Yeva did not know why it had been used, but felt a flicker of excitement (and awe) with each successful step. She was doing it!

"One, two, three, one, two-"

Like most lessons, the young medic was enthralled in its practice, hoping to ace her crash course in dancing so that she might prove Betsy wrong. Kicking up dust didn't matter much to her- although it was more likely to be mud thanks to the walk in the rain - but no man or woman deserved to be stepped upon should she muster up the courage to ask for a dance. She had intended to make a positive impression on others at the ball, and well... that was to be decided. Despite being by herself, she did not seem to care - so much stress had been alleviated by the idea that a partner was not required. Yeva was quite familiar with traversing life's journey alone. And for better or worse, that meant she could move at her own pace, just the way she liked it.

So devoured in her task, she did not seem to notice the dark haired man that approached.

“Betsy shouldn’t have made fun of you like that”

Yeva's attention shot up and her feet froze, "P-professor!" she had noticed him upon announcement, but had not expected him to approach her. Up close she could see the finery of his outfit and how well crafted it was. It was a dark color and made him quite the dashing, if imposing figure with the attention to detail. It looked quite expensive, and as he extended a glass of punch to her, the familiar butterflies in his presence rioted within her, "Ah, that's alright. Thank you," She pressed a hand to her bodice as if she could soothe the sensation, offering a shy smile, "Better me than someone else. I probably should have expected someone to take a jab or two," Yeva's face began to redden, wondering how much of a spectacle the verbal jab had been. She had scurried off quickly while Vega had jumped to her defense, but just how many had overheard? Best to lighten the mood, pretend it didn't bother her, "We are in Rharne, I should know better than to let my guard down."

She looked away and then felt foolish. Doran was a smart man - smarter than her - he'd likely see right through the poor act, "Look - now, even you're punching me."

Yeva smiled, genuinely, and lifted her glass in a toast. It was dumb joke, she knew, but it drew a curt chuckle from her chest. She soon realized, meeting Doran's gaze, how much she wished the drink to be alcoholic, and then wondered when she begun to enjoy such a thing. It must have been sometime in Scalvoris. With Darius, or Balthazar. She searched the crowd, "I, uh," Dancing with Doran? That would require touching! What if she scuffed his fine shoes? The fact that he was asking her of all people made her eyes widen fractionally. She prayed it wasn't because of pity, "I actually wouldn't mind someone to practice with, but I'll admit, prior slights aside, I'm here for something... else. I shouldn't care what that woman thinks... I'm not here for her." The medic chewed on her bottom lip, inexperienced in how she should proceed.

Was it tasteless to bring up money?

But, looking at him, he clearly had some. A man of science, would he even be open to idea? How did one begin to address business at a formal affair meant for recreation? "I'm actually here for those who can't be."

"May I steal you for a trill?" she touched his elbow and nodded to a spot out of the way from other dancers, "You see, I have a... I suppose it's a business venture? I'm not really sure what to call it. Right now it's just an idea... floating in my head, and I'm a little nervous to tell you. Maybe you can give your honest opinion... But, anyway, I'll just cut to the chase-"

Yeva took a deep breath, followed by a deep drink, "I want to play a game. A-actually, I want to invent one. I suppose it's... like a... collaborative story? You play with others people, and you go on adventures. There's monsters, and the setting can change - it can be whatever you want! You have a character and you can go on quests. In fact," there was a building excitement in her voice, and she seemed to brighten significantly, "I'm making it for some of the patients we see at the Order. There are so many who can't go out on their own, but this will let them experience so much. Or, that's the idea." There was so many details to it, a hundred things to figure out before the concept was even properly fleshed out, and no time to properly explain, "Am I making any sense?"

Like their first meeting, she covered her mouth to prevent further word vomiting, "I thought if I came here, I might be able to find others to help. You know, artists, writers, investors... It's a lot for one person to create all by themselves," Why did she feel so warm? The idea of revealing her own project to such a handsome man and him scorning her passion felt unbearable compared to Betsy's arrogant disdain. Doran had respected her knowledge of facts, would he scorn her love of imagination? "W-what do you think?"
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Balthazar Black
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Re: The Mummer's Ball

Thu Nov 05, 2020 9:11 pm


61 Vhalar 720
Balthazar's hand tightened into a fist and his eyes narrowed when Betsy mocked Yeva, the Hero of Faldrass. He was glad he'd soothed his mutations or he was sure he'd have been generating a few sparks. He looked to Yeva to see what she said for a moment while he tried to figure out if he was going to be bold or be smart. He and Yeva could mock Betsy by the punch bowl later and not risk drawing the astute woman's ire. Then Vega spoke out and Balthazar smiled a small smile that he quickly tried to hide by looking away to admire the wall panels. The smile bubbled into a small chuckle but Balthazar composed himself quickly after and moved on with the crowd.

While the others were introduced, Balthazar found himself engaged in a interesting conversation with Hinata about magic. They organized a little meeting in a few trials so he could teach her a little bit of what he knew. He wasn't a great teacher by any means, but he knew what it was like to struggle with his magic and he believed he could help. Balthazar didn't recognize any of the names that were called out but every once in a while he found his attention briefly pulled by the announcer's voice. Having agreed to dance with Hinata when the time came, Balthazar excused himself to the punch bowl with a passing invite for Hinata to come with him. Whether she did or did not was up to her, but he knew he was going to need a little something if he was going to dance so he went.

However he did not go directly to the punch bowl because a certain calf-named dancer had tried to humiliate someone Balthazar considered a friend. En route to the bowl, he noticed Doran had approached Yeva as well. If he didn't already have a dancing partner, Balthazar might have become concerned and gone away. After all, every time Balthazar saw Doran he became a little more curious about his own... interests. Fortunately, Hinata had given the mage a level of comfort he appreciated. He wasn't on the hunt anymore, he was just socializing and that he could do very well. However Balthazar was interrupted again as Madame Leona was introduced and he stopped where he was standing, turning to face her as she spoke so that he didn't miss anything.

They didn't have to dance! Balthazar's eyes widened and his hands curled slowly into fists before his head swiveled slightly. Where was the calf-named woman? He expected to find her surveying the field as well in delight of her little torments. Tormenting your students, Balthazar could let slide... but strangers... that wasn't alright. In truth it didn't help that he was one of the many who'd been thoroughly deceived. He could punch people in Rharne, couldn't he? Wasn't that how the laws were written? Law 4: Balthazar Black can punch people in this city if they accept the challenge. Maybe it wasn't really written that way but that was how he remembered it most fleetingly. Then again this was not exactly the place and his suit was honestly expensive enough that he did not want to risk tearing it in a fight. A woman with hair like fire and a dress the sun began playing and stole his focus for a moment. He looked around for the source and when he found her on a violin he exhaled the breath he didn't know he was holding. His hand unconsciously moved together in silent applause for a few trills before he shook his head and got back on task.

Balthazar noticed that Doran and Yeva had moved away from the other dancers getting lessons with Killi and Yeva seemed to be in the middle of a long explanation that Balthazar could not hear over the amazing music playing in the ballroom. He had ways to hear it, but he didn't even think to intrude. Instead Balthazar turned his attention to the basic steps Killi was teaching for a few bits. He watched but he didn't try them out quite yet. It's like learning to fight. Balthazar told himself. Watch the moves, count, copy... you can do this. He took a deep breath while he imagined himself doing what the others were doing until he decided he'd given Yeva and Doran enough time and he walked over.

"So is this where we sign up to defend her honor and fight Betsy? How about it 'Hero of Faldrass,' you know about me and fights?" Balthazar asked, effectively announcing himself to the duo.. He was more than happy to see them together. It was incredibly efficient. He still wanted to say hello to Elisabeth but he'd known Yeva and Doran far longer so he had to prioritize. "I'm sorry to intrude, but I thought I should say hello. I honestly wasn't expecting to find so many familiar faces in one place." Balthazar admit. He cast a nervous glance around for Hinata. They would need to get some actual lessons from Killi as soon as he was done catching up with old friends. He had far more to tell either of them than he could in a brief greeting but there would be time later.

"Professor if you have the time after the ball, I would very much like to catch up with you." A lot had happened. The byproduct of active traveling. Fortunately Balthazar's schedule was flexible. Very flexible. He could have meetings while he was awake and while he was asleep. Then he turned slightly to Yeva and said, in a deceptively level tone, "I'd like to catch up with you as well at some point, Matchstick- after the ball if we all end up seated with strangers."

word count: 1015

Too Many Mutations For A Signature

  • Mass Mutation Summary: He glows faintly, his skin is warm and sometimes hot to the touch, and when he gets angry sparks literally fly off him. He's a the middle of a field of static electricity so every once in a while when you touch him, you get shocked. He has the distinctive Attuner "puzzle eyes" and they glow whenever he Attunes. Fire leans towards Balthazar and droplets of water seem magnetically attracted to him. Whenever he uses Defiance, his eyes emit a soft smoke. He has a series of cracks on his right pectoral that glow of soft emerald.

Scars

  • Element in the streets, Yari pretty much everywhere else: Balthazar Black has twenty scars across his back from a lashing as well as scars on his hands and arms from jagged rocks in Faldrass. There are two scars on the sides of his abdomen from being stabbed and a slash across his back which blends in with the whip scars.
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