(1866-12-15) Sunsreach Tourney: Artistic Competition
Sunsreach Tourney Artistic Competition
Summary: The Sunsreach Artistic competition is judged with some surprising results.
Date: 1866-12-15
Related: The Royal Wedding and other Sunsreach Tourney Logs
Alysande  Jaren  Emilia  Broderick  Tiadora  Aidric  Clara  Raelyn  Stephen  Thaddeus  Tristan  Elaida  Gabriel  Philippe  Michael  Bella  Elrick  Nadine  Gabriel  Alina  Evelyn  Samuel  Hashim  

Grand Theatre, Sunsreach
See scene.
December 15th 1866

Art is important in Rivana and so the artistic competition is not shunted away to some minor hall in the palace but is held in the Grand Theatre in the Goldseat District. The theatre's domed painted ceiling full of figures of story and lore stare down upon the main floor before the stage where the various contestants have set up their displays. To one side of the room, stands the displays of composition category, a number of books, poems and plays, including the much discussed Queen Takes Knight, which seems favoured to win. The craftsmen are next, with a Charwin made writing desk of rosewood, polished to a mirror gleam with gold inlay and dozens of little drawers and secret compartments, some of them triggered by ingenious little triggers tucked here and there. Next to that a suit of armor, the steel the shade of bronze, studded with gems and engraved with battle scenes. A tourney suit by the thicker front plate and heavy helm and lighter armor for the legs. The armorer, one of the Marwyn's masters, stands proudly beside his creation reminding those that show interest that both the suit are comissions are available. Finally there were a pair of rings, one heavier and wider, made for a man's hand and another more delicate for a lady's finger, each made in solid gold delicatey shaped in the form of dragons clutching emeralds in their mouthes, a shameless ploy to by its maker, one of the Sunsreach goldsmiths to earn Tracano attention and Tracano coin but there it was.

Next to the craftsmen were the displays of paintings and sketchings, including a set of plates with dress designs by the famed Alina l'Saigner, each 'model' in the sketch looking like one of her coterie. Next an image of the dragon bones displayed in the Royal Museum with an imagining of Giorgio's battle with the beast, bits of gold leaf and gold dust giving glints of light to the beasts flame and the knight's armor. Finally there is a landscape of a misty morning, with the fog clinging to the bright dawn landscape as various beasts and the silhouette of a girl can be seen within.

The visitors and the artists alike are free to wander the displays while the judges, the elderly Royal Curator, the head of the Sunsreach Courtesan's Guild and the bard Devin Norrick move about the displays talking to each other in whispers as they make their selections.

Aidric Carling was there to see how his work Queen Take Knight would do this eve. He had high hopes and as he walks about the room looking at this piece or that, he is followed closely by someone of the merchant sort, a heavy set balding man, with ink on his fingers despite his best efforts to scrub it off, the owner of a local book binders shop, on hand to take orders for the scribing and binding of more of Aidric's works, if he should prove the victor for his category and indeed, even if he should not. He waves the man to stand back for a moment while he examines the paintings, transfixed for the moment by the work of his cousin, Dragon Dreams. He casts his eyes about the room for Tiadora.

With the nature of the event, and being more than a simple observer, Emilia Cassomir is actually within a dress! A dark teal gown with dark silver accents, that is actually a bit more fashionable than her usual (on those rare other times she is found within such a thing). A mildly corsetted waist aids in showing off her form a bit, and the dark silvery embroidery in the flowing skirts seem to accent her ethereal movements. Fastened about her her left arm is a leather strap. The simple token, appears to be well crafted from deer skin and mostly unadorned, save for an odd yet elegent looking design, or symbol, that has been carefully dyed into one end of the piece. Her dark eyes quietly taking in some of the other works. Murmuring to her sister,"I am of sure of the grander of pieces should be of winning of this time." For surely it was just a fluke her pieces actually manage to place before. Both times. Her words the only thing really belaying any of Emilia might be feeling, for that expression was as stoic as ever.

Tiadora is there. White knuckled and tight lipped and looking as if she may pass out from anxiety. The girl's corseted gown of soft blue isn't laced as tight as usual which may be the only reason why she hasn't fainted dead away. A set of onyx prayer beads click anxiously in her hands as she stands, back to a wall, watching all the people.

Lady Alina l'Saigner is present at the art show, taking her time as she peruses the art and craftsman items, looking interestedly at the Charwin desk, and scoffing with amusement at the flagrant arse-kissing of the rings. Her husband will be performing later this evening, which pleases her as well… she does enjoy listening to him play and sing.

Lady Elaida Toulan is there as well, checking out the artwork and finding it all to be beautiful. The craftsmanship items haven't drawn her attention yet, though as she passes Aidric, she gives him a warm smile. "Good luck on the competition tonight, Lord Aidric," she greets him cheerily.

Gabriel l'Saigner was not paying attention to any of the artistic showings of the evening. He was curious about how Alina's drawings would do compared to other presentations, but he also needed some time to get things ready for his own performance a little later.

Tristan walks arm-in-arm with Elaida. "Tell me if you want anything." He murmurs to her as they approach Aidric. He gives his cousin a grin. "Yes, good luck indeed, you'll need it. Competition looks fierce tonight. Still, I have some faith in you."

Evelyn l'Faust is looking over armorer's creations, looking keenly interested in the quality of the man's work. She is dressed in a fine gown of sky blue, presently and attending with a servant, and also accompanied by her rather large, pure white Warhound who seems to be minding himself quite well and staying out of the way of various attendants peaceably enough.

Raelyn Cassomir is in a dress of dark emerald, and a few Huntresses quietly attend to both sisters on guard during the event, hanging back and out of the way, but visible to make themselves known. She tells Emilia, casually, "Then you should be winning again, mine-sister," pleased enough. She exhales, "Though, perhaps one day I shall be talented enough to play a little on my recorder at such an event. Still." She laughs, just a bit, "I doubt my simple songs would ever win against such fine bards as I've seen. I imagine Lord Carling, and that other bard - Philippe was it? Would put me to shame."
Perhaps a surprise to some in the north who know him but Elrick t'Tremaine is in attendance as well tonight dispite not having much interest in artistic culture or history. But since the first day of the main jousting bracket, the northern knight had been absent in the practice grounds of his manse, whether it is from a wound he took from that vicious hit he took from the Haldis in the first round or a wound to his pride, he had not been practicing his martial skills since the event. Tonight, he arrives in the usual formal attire of military fashion, high stiff collar and sharp design, with the t'Tremaine House colors of black, silver in green. Elrick is also not here alive as he is escorting on his arm, Nadine t'Cadri, another accomplished lady knight from the north.

Aidric notes Tiadora holding up the wall but before he can approach her he is approached by Tristan and Elaida. Aidric smiles pleasantly, if only a little smugly, "I am not worried," he says. Indeed one of the judges had helped turn his tale into song after all. "Though thank you all the same," he says. "See anything you like?" he asks the pair. "There were some rings that might catch your fancy over yonder," he says nodding to where the obsequious jeweller is trying to catch Tristan's eye.

Being more of a patron of the arts than an artist himself, Broderick is here to ee what works the occasion has brought forth, rather than with any hopes for himself. With his squire in close proximity, although not glued to his side, he's dressed in a tunic of rich tracano green and takes his time to drift round the exhibits slowly at first, beofre his attention is drawn back to the dragon painting, which oddly enough, has also capture young Andrew's attention somewhat. Noting the painters name he raises an eyebrow faintly, then turns to scan the room, offing Tia a respectful incline of his head when he spies her.

It would seem that Samuel l'Corren has made his way out for this as well. Right now, he's just walking along, looking at things every now and then, and otherwise just watchig the various people present.

Dark eyes settle on Raelyn as if trying to see if Raelyn is simply teasing her. Emilia shakes her head,"I should of not…there are many of skilled of artists. Have you seen of the piece with the dragon of bones?" A hand lightly indicating to it. "Shall you be of giving up for archery for of art then, mine-sister?" A mild tease in there perhaps. But more sincerely, Emilia adds softly,"I should prefer of your simple of songs when I am in of need of music." A small tilt to her head as she considers,"Perhaps…could some of time hold of such a contest in Ironhold, to honor and of celebrate the simple tunes of such? Part of the spring festival of perhaps?"

Michael l'Corren is here for the artistic competition at least his body is here, it seems his mind is occupied with some matter, the tourney, most like. Though his wife Bella more than makes up for his lack of enthusiasm pulling him to this table and that one, before stopping before Alina's designs. "We need these," she declares.

Michael shakes off his woolgathering before glancing down at Ali's work, "We can see if she'll part with them, sometime after my brother performs," indeed that was what drew Michael out of the manse this eve. Spotting Elrick and Nadine, he gives the knights a nod of greeting.

Tiadora flashes the most nervous of smiles at people when they glance her way. The crowds do not sit well with her, especially the fact people are studying her handiwork so intently. Even her Cassomir ladies get a weak smile of greeting as she stays safely wall-flowered. The only time she moves is to grab a bit of delectable food from a passing servant with a tray.

Thaddeus Greycen is present for the contest tonight, but he is rather quiet, looking around and not being very sociable for the moment.

After catching sight of Michael and his wife, Evelyn strolls over to the two, her servant, or friend, moving with her along with the great warhound that Michael, at least, came to know quite well. "Sir Michael," she greets, warmly. "Fair greetings to you. There's some fine armor and weapons, yonder you may wish to look at. Smiths to rival our best," she concludes, honestly. "I've yet to even get to much of the artwork." Then she sees the booth that he and his wife are near, and what Bella is looking at. "Oh, my. That is quite wonderful, isn't it?" She inquires of Bella.

Raelyn smiles, briefly to Emilia, "Says the sister who won the artistry tournament, as I recall, for her marvelous painting." She tsks, once, and then observes thoughtfully, "Of consideration such an idea is," speaking back to Emilia in her own strange way of speaking as only a sister might be able to, fondly, and affectionately without sense of mockery.

Nadine strolls with Elrick, dressed in a gown of black and white that is simple and modest. "Is there anything that you might be interested in bidding on?" she asks him curiously. There is nothing that draws her attention… well, maybe the armor, but she has a set of full plate herself already.

Emilia's hand gives a fluttery motion to wave along the notion,"It was being of just of a fluke, of surely." Perhaps the judges had done so out of pure pity of the Cassomir. Right? There is a little nod to Raelyn,"Something to be thinking of upon. Of aye?" Emilia not seeming to mind, or even take much notice of Raelyn speaking in turn to her as such. Truly one of the few who could do so and not appear to be mocking her. A small incline of her head offered to a few she knew, such as Tiadora and Broderick.

"Rings?" Tristan asks Aidric, glancing over to spot the jeweller. Giving Elaida a side-ways glance, he nods. "I suppose it's worth a look. Come Elaida, let us see what the man has to show off." He gives Aidric a slight nod and then leads Elaida away and towards the jeweller. Perhaps he will be spending some money tonight after all.

Michael grins in greeting Evelyn when she joins he and Bella and he crouches down to greet Blaze as well ruffling the warhound's fur if he'll let him, after offering the dog a sniff of his hand. Bella looks less certain of the hulking hound, but then he does not stand much shorter than she did. "Lady Evelyn," she greets. "Yes, they are rather fine, I know my sister and mother would love them as well. I am hoping we can convince Lady Alina to sell them when all of this," she waves her hand about, "Is done with."

Michael stands after greeting Blaze and nods to his wife, before looking towards the craftsmen's table. "Armor?" he asks, and then spots the piece in question. "Fine work," he says beginning to move in that direction, beckoning for the others to follow.

The t'Tremaine Heir doesn't look entirely comfortable being in an event like this, appearing a bit stiffer than usual in his posture and demeanor as his eyes scans the area, sweeping over the various artistic piece from afar without too much interest. Seeing Michael though, Elrick returns the nod with the same before glancing at Nadine at his side, "Most likely not…" He answers at first before leaning in to continue with a lower voice, "I prefer to focus my resources elsewhere. And also, my interests lies elsewhere as well." The second part most likely added in case Nadine had any ideas about buying something for him.

After discussing the finer points of the Tia's painting, particualrly the depiction of Giorgio's entourage, Broderick finally steps back from the work to allow others to view it. His squire remains for a while though, seemingly captivated. With Aidric cornered by Tristan, he decides to take another look along the line of smith's to see if there is aught that he might find either useful or desirable. Certainly names are taken, but no commisions given as of yet. Michael and his wife are given a nod as they're paths converge.

Nadine shrugs. "A wise course, I think," she responds. The martially-inclined t'Cadri were not known for their artists or collections of such of course. "It seems to be a popular event, though," she notes.

Elaida is swept along by Tristan, and when they reach the rings her eyes widen. "Little dragons," she exclaims. "How very talented must the jewelcrafter be. Look at their tiny claws." She's not really interested in purchasing the pieces but she can appreciate the work.

Alina hmms to herself as she continues to look over the Charwin made desk. "I've a pair of side tables much like this in my suite at home," she says to their maker. "My great great grandfather purchased them prior to the 30 Years War."

Pausing to look at one of the artworks, Samuel nods a little to himself, but otherwise keeps silent. Starting to turn away from the art, he pauses, turning to look at it again, his head a bit more tilted now.

Just slightly late, the princess Clara Tracano enters the theatre proper. She is dressed as expected of someone of her station…a golden gown with just a touch of green to add a splash of color. The green is the teardrop earrings and pendant necklace…and maybe a glitter of green upon a finger or two. She seems rather pleasant, offering greetings to those that catch her passing by. Her attention, for the moment? The paintings, of course.

Another figure is drifting through the crowd. A blonde, finely dressed (almost to the point of nobility) but most certainly a commoner. A fine green doublet, with black pants…a pair of black boots….and a lute, resting comfortably upon his back. If nothing else, the lute would have identified the man as a bard. But….those in the know would recognize the man as Philippe Giscard, who has been a regular to the artistic competitions. He remains cordial, but reserved…for the moment. After all, he is here not only as a spectator…but as part of the evening's entertainment as well.

Queen Alysande Tracano is among those perusing the artistry tonight. She (and her husband) is guarded by a quartet of Royal Lancers, but the Queen— a known great patron of the arts— is making a point to stop and look at every entry into the competition with equal grace and kind commentary on them all.

Tristan leans in a little and examines the little dragons, nodding appreciatively at the craftsmanship. "Do you want one?" He asks Elaida. If she wants one, she's going to get one.

Aidric mouthes 'you owe me' to the jeweller as Tristan makes his way in that direction, before he goes looking for Tiadora, leaving his bookbinder to take any bids for a copy of his book.

"Blaze is quite intelligent, and exteremely well trained," Evelyn assures Bella, warmly. "Don't worry about him. He only attacks either what I tell him to, or what attacks me." She grins at Michael, "Or my friends. You should ask your husband how impressed he was with Blaze when we were up north." But, she moves back over, pleased for the company of the familiar man, and to have conversation with Bella, as well. She nods about the dresses, as they move over towards the armor displays. "It's amazing that people can create such things of beauty, isn't it? The One distributes our talents in interesting ways."

Raelyn grins at Emilia, "Stop it," she tells her sister about her dismissal of winning the last artistry tourney. "You know that isn't true." Still, she is looking over the various other entries, with some mild appreciation. She inquires of her sister, "Do you think Stephen would like that?" Pointing to the painting of the dragon battle, curiously.

"Indeed it is…" Elrick says as he looks a those in attendance and it appears to be a great number of people, no doubt most being the affluent type. "I guess one is able to enjoy the finer and more delicate things in life in a much liberal fashion when they don't have threats from the north to constantly worry about." Words spoken in whispered tones of course, as the t'Tremaine's outward appearance is the socially diplomatic mask.

"Oh," Elaida blushes. "What need have I for a dragon ring?" Though she's suspecting at this point Tristan intends to buy the set anyway. She bites her lower lip. "Would you think they would be good wedding rings?" she finally says. That's a good reason to justify Tristan's expenditure on them!

"Of fine….I will of stop," not that it changes Emilia's thoughts on the matter. Her head tilts a little as she studies the piece,"He of might, it is of qualitiy of work. Though I am not of knowing if he has much of care for of art, or what of themes he might of enjoy."

"It's true, I've never had the knack for that sort of thing though, despite my best efforts," Michael says of making beautiful things. But then the One calls each to where they are most needed. Murnord needed a warrior and a duke, not an artist. Michael turns at Sir Broderick's nod. "Lord Broderick isn't it?" he asks remembering the man from the jousts. "This is my wife Lady Bella l'Corren and this is Sir Evelyn l'Faust and he hound Blaze." He turns then to the armor staring at the coloured steel and the gem inlay. "What think you of the armour?"

Tristan considers a moment, his eyes darting over to take in Elaida's expression. A smile creeps onto his face and he slowly nods. "They would indeed." He looks up at the jeweller, smiles, and then begins to talk with the man about buying them from them.

"Probably not as much as your brother or the Queen might." Stephen replies on behalf of Raelyn as he steps out of the crowd and into position near her and Emilia. "But it is a nice piece." He adds, smiling a bit towards Emilia as he moves to offer an arm to his wife, leaning over to peck her cheek briefly, "Sorry I'm late."

Jaren Tracano is not so verbal or effusive with his praise as his wife, but he does regard each piece with approval, and largely concur with his wife's opinions.

There's a bit of a stir near the entry path to where the pieces are being exhibited. Nothing violent or angry or even really a "disturbance" so much as a sort of ripple of conversation in the crowd. The source of discussion likely comes into view a short while later, as a tall, thin man in black robes makes his way through the crowd, a peaceful smile on his well-weathered face, and polite greetings and courtesies exchanged with those that cross his path. By his appearance, he must surely be the Prophet Hashim Nejem, and it seems he too is something of an art lover, given his intent examination of the various works on display.

"It is," Broderick replies simply, but with a smile. Evelyn gets a polite inclination of his head in greeting, and Bella "a pleasure Lady Bella. I trust you are finding your stay in Sunsreach a pleasant one?" That last to the group rather than any in particular before he looks to the armour they're studying. His impressions on it though are never vocalised, as he is distracted by the noise towards the enterance. A frown starts to form on his brow before Hashim is revealed and then he merely stands to watch, wanting to speak to the man, but not about to just ditch the northerns he's just spoken to in order to do so.

"Of aye, Lady of Tiadora did a wonderful of job with it," Emilia agress easily with Stephen. A small incline of her head offered to him, a mild tugging at the corners of her lips in greeting. The bit of a stir does draw the younger Cassomir's gaze, simply because..well 'disturbances' weren't horridly common at the art competition. It being a tamer event compared to most other tournament events..though some of the bidding wars could get fierce over a piece or two at times. A brow rises just a little bit to spy the man within the black robes. "It does of seem all of kinds have of an appreciation of art." And oh…hey, a Clara! An 'Emilia smile' is offered along towards her friend.

Michael nods to Broderick and his words, but he does not notice the Prophet right away, instead he talks with the armorer, but when the man gives his name as Godfrey of Stonewall, Michael's intrest wanes. Eastfield he thinks glumly, that wouldn't do for the heir to Murnord no matter his personal thoughts on the place. He turns though when he sees Broderick distracted, he nudges his wife, "The Alhazred priest," he says needlessly to his more worldly wife. She lifts her shoulder.

"A pleasure, Lord Broderick," greets Evelyn, warmly. "Your country is a fine one. One I'm pleased to have visit for this stay." She pats Blaze's head lightly, as the inquisitve beast looks at Broderick with interest, but seems behaved well enough the great white warhound does not move away from Evelyn's side to intrude on the other's space. She spies the Prophet, having heard he and his other countrymen of high pedigree and nobility were present for the coronation. "If you will excuse me, however? I do wish to greet someone of importance." Her family, afterall, is not present. And her father will have something to say if she doesn't represent them well. Though she does not make way to leave yet.

Raelyn laughs, lightly, and turns to look at Stephen, "Then I shall not surprise you with it," she declares, mock offended. Then she's smiling to Clara, "Welcome, Princess. A fine display of talents, and arts, are they not? Truly a gathering of the Edge's finest." She, too, notes with some clear interest the buzz about the Prophet, musing low to Stephen, "We really should endeavor to meet our guests, sometime soon."

"From my understanding, they've all had fairly open doors since arrival, though not terribly many have taken advantage of that fact. Like as not due to all the business surrounding the celebrations and Tourney." Stephen replies to Raelyn, and smiles a touch, "And likely a bit of uncertainty as to how to approach and what to discuss. Or how such a visit might be painted within the Court."

"If you mean the Prophet," Broderick starts in reply to Evelyn, "then we have no need to yet part, for I was hoping to speak a word or two with him myself. Another of my order did so at the Queen's wedding, and informs me he is well worth conversing with." He notes Blaze's interest, and lets one hand drop to a position where it could scratch the dog's muzzel should Evelyn allow it.

Ever the hostess, when the Prophet Hashim Nejem makes his presence known, namely by the ripple of conversation, Clara breaks away from the display piece she was admiring and steps over to greet the Alhazredi proper. As she steps over, a glance is stolen to the left…and catches an Emilia, who is given a warm smile and a nod. As well, Raelyn is treated to a smile, but not a response directly as Clara closes the distance between herself and the Prophet. Finally, with a pause and a grand curtsey, Clara greets the Prophet. "Good evening, honorable Prophet. I trust that the night finds you well?"

Samuel finally just shakes his head and moves away from that artwork. Not really paying too much attention to the other pieces of art now.

Emilia notes softly to Raelyn and in turn Stephen as well,"Destrian was of speaking with him for a bit of time at of Jaren's reception. He spoke quite well of his time and was rather of wishing a chance to speak of with him again as of well." A mild nod to Stephen,"Or of perhaps worry to be found of wanting in such of conversations. It would not of due to seek to sake of a curiosity only to cause of insult or the like to such guests."

"For you, my prince?" the jeweler bows graciously. "I would sell outright, instead of worrying over bidding wars. The design is delicate and the rings pure gold, the gems cut ever so perfectly, highness. Such a set… 350 gold?" the jewelcrafter bobs his head slightly. "And your lady is right, perfect wedding rings for a Tracano wedding. …if I may ask, highness, when will the kingdom be treated to such nuptuals?"

"It does, your Highness. I rarely find anything but awe and gratitude at such displays of talent, skill, and craftsmanship." Hashim bows slightly from the waist to Clara, straightening and turning that surprisingly warm smile towards her, "And you, Your Highness? I hope your duties permit you to enjoy the exhibition and not simply attend." He glances about once more, that serene expression never leaving his face, "There should be joy in the act of creation and the witnessing of it. It is surely the greatest gift that we mortals possess."

Whent he Prophet makes an appearance though, Elrick's attention does shift in the direction of the disturbance, also drawn in by the ripple of chatter. There is a slight squeeze of his hand on Nadine's arm as he nods in the visitor's direction. "It appears that those of the Alhazred Empire also have a taste of the fine arts and culture as well. I wonder if anything from their lands will be on display as well."

Nadine chuckles lowly at Elrick's comment. "True enough words, my lord," she replies. "But I do not begrudge them this. So others may create and know joy, that is why we are the shield of the north. We never forget that… why we fight."

When the judges have finished their circuit of the room they make their way up to the stage still conferring until at last decisions are made and Devin Norrick makes his way to the center of the stage and clears his throat. "My Lords, my Ladies…" the bard says before he shoots the Royal Curator a look, words are mouthed and the old bard recovers carrying on "Your Grace," he bows to the Prophet, then he sweeps a deep bow his hat brushing the stage, "Your Highnesses; Your Majesties, I beg your attention," the old bard says in his sonorous voice. When the room quiets down he grins beneath his moustache and says, "We've come to our decisions on our first three categories of the evening, so with the blessing of our Queen we shall proceed on to our final category, the performances before we announce our winners." He turns then to the Queen for her approval before moving forward and calling the first performer to the stage.

There is no hesitation as Tristan gives the jeweller a nod. "I appreciate that. 350 gold? Very well, I shall have the monies delivered at the conclusion of this event. Thank you for your offer, and I must say, you do fine work. Perhaps I shall speak of your craftsmanship to Her Majesty." He gives the man a faint smile and then glances over at Elaida. "The date has not yet been set, but I do look forward to it. Again, thank you." He nods his appreciation at the man and then to Elaida, he says, "Come, let us go and mingle some more, I think it is important that we be seen a little more."

He leads Elaida away from the jeweller and past some additional exhibits, his eyes falling on a desk made by the Charwin. He might have to look at that some more in a little bit.

"I am hardly the ambassador of Rivana," Raelyn jokes, gently, with Stephen and Emilia, but she nods to her husband's observation. "We should arrange something." She includes her sister in this, "But, I would not wish to cause a rift by a faux paus." She laughs, just a little, then inquires of Stephen, "Are there any works here you find interesting enough to hang in the castle?" She quiets then, as the call for the performances starts to begin, but still seems to expect a response from Stephen. Apparently Raelyn is in the mood to spend some coin? Something that Emilia will know is not one of her sister's usual pasttimes.

Evelyn inclines her head to Broderick, "Then we ought to meet him together." She seems confident in this, as if she were perhaps, in some small fashion, offering to introduce Broderick to the man. Or at least, pave the way. And after excusing herself again from Michael and Bella, Evelyn will walk with Broderick to where the Prophet and the Princess Clara converse. She waits until the appropriate time, before she touches her fingertips to her forehead as she inclines her head in slight manner. As she does this, she speaks to most what will be an unintelligble language, but perhaps recognizable as Alhazredi. "I greet you in peace, Your Emience."

What answer that Clara would have given to Hashim gives away to silence as Devin asks for attention. However, a small little smile is given to the Prophet…one that effectively answers, without words needed, that Clara is there just as much for enjoyment as for duty. The brown eyes then shift, to give the bard, and the potential performers, her undivided attention.

Philippe, for his part, seems to actually relax more when the announcement is given for the performances to about to begin. It seems the minstrel is not one for waiting…best to be performing and in the moment than waiting for that moment to come.

Alina drifts away from the artwork and finds herself a spot where she might observe the performance well. She rests a hand on her growing stomach as she prepares to see her husband perform… whenever he is called.

Elaida lets out a girlish giggle of delight. "Oh, Tristan! The bards!" she exclaims. "Let us find a good spot!"

"You would surely have of better luck thatn of I, mine-sister, to be such of an ambassador." With the rather stoic delivery, hard to say if Emilia is being serious or teasing Raelyn. Some turn of curiosity to what Stephen might say to that question, perhaps simply curious to what his tastes may, or may not be, in the area of the arts. When the bard moves for a call of attention, Emilia's attention is thusly drawn from Clara and the Prophet, as well her sister and brother-in-law. The mention of the various areas outside of performance having been decided, Emilia's hand does airly rise to briefly touch to the token worn, before she gives her attention to the performers.

When Alysande gives her leave, Norrick continues "Very well then," the bard says. "Let us have Lord Sir Gabriel l'Saigner come to the stage," he says giving up the floor with applause as his apprentice brings out a stool for the lord to sit upon.

Aidric moves from his discussion with Tiadora to move closer to the stage when the bard speaks and the crowd awaits the first performer to take the stage.

Tristan gives Elaida a faint nod, and leads her into the crowds, attempting to find a nice spot so they can listen to the music.

Once Broderick has excused himself from Michael and Bella as well he is content enough to walk with Evelyn across the floor of teh theater. It's fair to say that from his expression as she greets the Prophet that he a) doens't speak Alharzedi himself, and b) is mildly surprised that she does. Guessing the gesture shown to be one of respectful greeting him almost considers copying it, then, at the last moment, decides not to incase he accidentaly get it wrong and cause offense, so instead he merely bows deeply. "Your Emience," he says simply, "it is an honour."

<FS3> Gabriel rolls String Instruments: Good Success. (6 3 6 1 5 8 1 7 3 3 8)
<FS3> Gabriel rolls String Instruments: Good Success. (4 7 7 4 1 1 8 6 4 3 5)
<FS3> Gabriel rolls Singing: Good Success. (6 3 2 3 8 1 3 6 7 3)

Gabriel takes a deep breath, his eyes glancing around the room. Oh. There's Alina. She will absolutely love this, he's sure. Catching Michael's eye, he gives his brother a slight grin. "The song that I will perform this evening is something of a staple in parts of Murnord, it is my hope that you all will enjoy it." He begins by flipping the lute and lighly tapping the back of the instrument with his fingertips, his foot tapping on the ground to get the beat. After several moments, he flips the instrument back around and begins to strum a lively tune.

The tune itself is a particular adventure of Sir Tumblelot. In this adventure, the gallant Sir Tumblelot is at a village that is particularly known for its strong drink. While spending the night in the Inn, and pursuing the beautiful daughter of the Innkeeper, Sir Tumblelot became quite inebriated and stepped out of the Inn. He went home with an old widow and gave her a tumble. In the morning, he realized what he had done and tried to make his escape, only to tumble out of the second story window and crack his head.

The village, thinking that poor Sir Tumblelot was dead, rolled him up in a bed sheet and dragged him to his Inn room, waiting for the town priest to return from his trip and perform the burial rights. As they waited, they celebrated the life and deeds of Sir Tumblelot. In the evening, Sir Tumblelot awoke to hear the commotion. Coming down into the common room he danced with several pretty lasses and kissed them too before slipping out and riding out of town before anyone realized that he wasn't actually dead.

The song ended, Gabriel glances up to take in the reaction of the crowd. After all, not everyone could truly appreciate the glory of Sir Tumblelot.

Alysande mutters to Jaren, "Oh, their Champion is a bard as well, then?" with a slight eyeroll. "My word, what else does he do?" and she slips a bit closer to her champion.

Alina stifles the urge to facepalm as she hears her husband's choice of song. What was he thinking? She forces a smile to her lips, and… admitted is glad her child is unborn and thus unable to be corrupted by that foolishness!

"I'm not really sure. There are a lot of fine pieces. But if you're looking for a generous gift, I'd imagine Devlin would be plenty dashing wearing that armor in the next Tourney parade." Stephen replies to Raelyn, "For my part? That desk looks interesting, but we could probably avoid a bidding war and just commission the Charwin for a duplicate or something similar directly." He turns his attention as Sir Gabriel steps up and gives his performance, smiling a bit, "Well, that's a little unexpected."

The Prophet's attention turns to Evelyn after the introduction to the performances. He returns the gesture that Evelyn gave him, replying in Alhazredi himself, «I receive your greeting in Harmony, Milady. It is rare to hear our language in these lands, but you speak it well.»

Jaren glances to Alysande, looking perhaps a touch amused as he replies, "He's a good man, and a great knight…." His eyebrows raise at the choice of song and he chuckles, "And has more of a sense of humor than most would credit him with, apparently." Jaren pauses for a heartbeat or two, then adds in a more conspiratorial tone, "But if it's any consolation, I'm reasonably sure I'm a better dancer."

Nadine grins broadly at the song. Sir Tumblesalot! A staple of nights around the fire up north while out hunting Tirians.

The *other* minstrel, Philippe, almost laughs out loud as he realizes just *exactly* which song the knight offers to the crowd. Of course Philippe knows it…but really….to perform it in front of royalty? That Gabriel is a bold one, indeed! Fortunately, for Philippe's sake, he manages to keep a straight face.

But only barely.

There is a mild rise of a brow, just ever so very slightly by Emilia to hear the performer called. And then the choice of song, it was an interesting one. But it was performed well enough. And a proper round of clapping is given in appreciation of the man's talent in turn with others watching.

There is peel of hearty laughter that would do Cesare l'Corren proud when Gabriel finishes his song and it is only fitting that it should come from Michael while his wife looks at him in askance. Michael applauds after wiping tears of mirth from his eyes, "What?" he asks his wife. "It was funny." Murnordians right?

Aidric raises a brow and shakes his head at the Couvieri's choice of song. He glances to Tirstan as if to ask 'this is who you lost to?' meaning over Alina of course. Still he claps because if nothing else the choice was amusing.

Elaida is bright pink and looks scandalized by the song. "…it was… nicely sung…" she mutters.

With the performances starting, Andrew has weaved his way back through the crowds to find Broderick, only to find himself rapidly dispatched on a short errand to find Lady Tia so the knight can keep his attention on the Prophet.. Polite appaluse is given to Gabriel, it's a good performance of that there is no doubt, but the faintly dubious expression likely hints at a uncertaintly of the chosen material's suitability. He does however, applaude with the rest as the conversation in Alharzedi continues beside him.

Tristan claps politely, more amused by Elaida's reaction than anything else. Leaning over, he murmurs in her ear. "You did say you wanted to listen to the bards, my dear." His voice lowering further, he adds, "Besides, I can be your Sir Tumbleslot later tonight if you wish it." With that, he kisses her lightly on the cheek, not caring who sees such a gesture.

The prophet is quickly forgotten when the bard Norrick makes an announcement to all those present, that the performance pieces will begin. When Elrick hears Gabriel's name being the first performer though, there is an arched brow as he glance to the lady at his side, as if silently asking Nadine if she knew. Then the t'Tremaine's gaze turns back to where one of the l'Corren twins will be performing. When the song turns out to be about Sir Tumblelot, a smile cracks from Elrick's neutral expression that he had worn all night. Tempted to clap along with the song and maybe even join in a verse or two, the northern knight refrains, training in court etiquette kicking in.

Clara…of course…has heard of such songs before. But….she did not expect to actually hear it here, of all places. A hand reaches up, obscuring the face of the princess as she shakes her head mildly. It is a song…and it was well sung. Perhaps it has won the crowd over more than not.

There is a tugging of a smile from Devin Norrick, when he joins in the applause, mostly led by those from Murnord. "Well played my lord," he says. "Our thanks to Lord Gabriel playing a favourite of song of Murnord," he says bowing deeply to Gabriel. At least the bard gets it.

When Gabriel has taken whatever bow he makes Norrick calls, "Would Master Phillipe Giscard come to the stage please," he says yielding the stage to his fellow bard.

Tristan's offer only deepens the flush on Elaida's cheeks. "Tristan!" she admonishes him.

Raelyn grins at Stephen, "Splendid idea," she agrees at the commissioning of the desks at a later date. And then when Gabriel breaks out the song? She clears her throat, looking at Emilia, then Stephen, shaking her head. "Well, there are more tawdry songs sung at Festival in taverns, but still. Here?" She is half-amused, and half-disbelief that such a song was song.

Gabriel takes his bow, and gives Norrick a grin and a nod of his head. "Thank you, Master Norrick." He watches Phillipe make his way to the stage as he heads off of it, and gives the bard a nod. "Play well, Master Gascard. Play well." That is his way of wishing the man good luck. He takes his instrument and moves to go stand by Alina.

Emilia gives a mild nod towards Raelyn,"Of true, would not have expected it of here. It is of an interesting choice." Fitting perhaps, given the Royal couples choice of dance for their reception. But Emi isn't going to say /that/. "Of imagine, not many could have truly of gotten of away with such a choice of either." Curious now to what the next performer shall play.

Alina slides her arm into Gabriel's when he makes his way to her, squeezing his arm lightly. Even if he does not win the jousts in two days time, she's pleased with how he's fared this tournament.

For his part, the Prophet chuckles, and his eyes alight with considerable amusement, "Courage and humor and no small talent all in one. I hope none will take offense at the sharing of his homeland's verses, bawdy though they may be." He looks back to Evelyn then, a hand moving to allow the Warhound to sniff at it should he choose, "I have heard your father's name spoken, though I have not had the honor of his acquaintance." He looks to the Warhound now, and adds, "And who is this proud fellow?"

Stephen shrugs a shoulder, "Maybe it's more accepted in Murnord? Most of those from there looked quite amused at the choice." He offers towards Raelyn, grinning just a touch.

There is a nod in passing as Philippe takes the stage. "I only hope I can follow that performance, milord." The statement is offered in earnest, though quietly, as Philippe finally takes center stage. With a single smooth motion, the lute finds its way from back to hand. The bard's voice rings out. "Lords and ladies! Your Majesties and Your Highnesses! I am truly honoured to be able to play for you this eve. I hope that my selection pleases all, though I scarely say it would be quite to the level of Sir Tumblesalot!" With that, a quick strum of the fingers, merely to check to ensure the lute is primed and ready, then a moment's pause…the calm before the performance.

Broderick raises a slight eyebrow towards Clara questioningly, silently asking if she is alright as she lifts her hand to her face. He has an ear still on the conversation with the Prophet though and as it switches back to a language he can comprihend he turns a fraction more into it, although given the topic he'll let Evelyn continue for now, as he has nothing useful or insightful to add to the current topic. He's definitiely listening thoug, and allowing the contest to slip into the background.

<FS3> Philippe rolls String Instruments: Great Success. (4 3 8 1 5 8 7 1 1 3 3 2 2 1 8 3)
<FS3> Philippe rolls Singing: Good Success. (4 6 2 2 3 7 6 5 2 8 5 7 2 4 2)
<FS3> Philippe rolls String Instruments: Success. (3 1 3 1 3 6 1 3 1 5 8 1 2 4 1 3)
<OOC> Philippe says, "http://youtu.be/kwzIL7OCHi4"

As Philippe begins, first…it is the lute. Hushed…quiet. The dulcet tones so soft that one has to strain to hear it. The subdued playing continues a few moments more, slowly gaining volume, before shifting in demeanor. Now, the music takes a low roll, like thunder off in the distance. The notes are many and varied, but never brash…never bold. A slow build indeed, for it is nearly a minute before the lute reaches a plateau, the music leveling off before the bard?s voice, a soft tenor, finally makes itself known.

A timeless and forgotten place,

The moon and sun in endless chase

Each in quiet surrender

as the other reigns the sky…

The midnight hour begins to laugh

A summer evening's epitaph

The winds are getting crazy

As the storm begins to rise…

As the storm begins to rise…

There is a lull after the word ?rise?. A stillness so deep that the faintest rustling could be heard. But, it doesn't last for long. The stillness is shattered with an eruption of melody, the notes from the vibrating strings quickly filling the area. The tempo is a lively one, fast and spirited, with the bard?s deft fingers fluttering over the strings. Yet, despite the difficulty of the song (so many different notes!) somehow Philippe provides his own percussion, courtesy of the flat of his palm rapping upon the body of his instrument. His eyes are bright and alive, mirroring the passion of the tune he plays as once again his voice sounds out into the din.

Wild were the winds that came

In the thunder and the rain

Nothing ever could contain

The rising of the storm….

In the wing of ebony

Darkened waves fill the trees

Wild winds of warning

Echo through the air?

Follow the storm, I've got to get out of here…

Follow the storm as you take to the sky…

Follow the storm now it's all so crystal clear,

Follow the storm as the storm begins to rise…

"Perhaps it is at that," conceeds Raelyn, to her husband. She takes his arm, comfortably and mouths to Emilia, 'You're going to win', before turning to listen and give her full attention to the performer on hand. Attentive.

Evelyn answers the Prophet, "His name is Blaze. He has been with me since I was five years, and we grew up together. And a descendant from your lands," she tells the man. "He has served me faithfully, and well, and a better companion man or woman would be hard pressed to find in all the Edge." Blaze does sniff, tentative, curious, but polite, the Prophet's hand. She looks at Broderick, then, as if quietly inviting him into the conversation, clearly not wishing to dominate the conversation. Afterall, she had invited the man to meet the Prophet with her. Her ears do turn, though, slightly, to listen to the bard weave the story.

There is just a mild shake of Emilia head at Raelyn with those words being mouthed her way. And the 'touched' Cassomir focuses her attention to the rather lively song. The subject matter…seeming to grab her interest in a fashion.

The bard indulges in a musical break, allowing his voice to give way to his strings. The speed never lessens, the fingertips literally dancing as Philippe sways in rhythm. The eyes are closed…and somehow the musician doesn?t seem to falter. At least, there is no audible mistakes. The steady beat, provided by both foot and palm, only serves to push the composition on. The only time that the steady stream of sharp staccato notes seems to lessen is when Philippe give voice to words. After a few more measures, the tell-tale lessening of the lute is noticed, as words take its place.

She seems to come from everywhere

Welcome to the dragon's lair

Fingers running through your hair

She asks you out to play…

In all of nature's sorcery

The most bewitching entity

Hell can have no fury

Like the rising of the storm…

Follow the storm, I've got to get out of here…

Follow the storm as you take to the sky…

Follow the storm now it's all so crystal clear,

Follow the storm as the storm begins to rise…

Tristan glances at Elaida, murmuring, "This seems to be a more appropriate song, does it not? What do you think? Should we invite this bard to come perform for us one evening this week?"

Michael and Bella move over to join Gabriel and Alina, with Michael still grinning. "Well done brother," he says as he stands beside his twin. He gives Giscard a listen and says, "A nice tune, but no Tumblealot," he says in jest. "How do you do Ali? Think you could part with your sketches for a favour owed, future Duke to future Duchess?"

Alina tilts her head and smiles. "Perhaps," she says agreeably but non commitally. "I'll have to wait until all the bids are in to say for sure."

Elaida's eyes widen. "Could we?" she asks with bated breath. "That would be so lovely, Tristan."

The strings take off once more, this time longer than before. The fingertips are a flurry of motion as note and counter note are plucked from the lute strings. The voice has given away to the lute once, and it is easy to see why. It is taking Philippe?s full concentration to keep up with the speed of the song, which seems to have actually picked up. Or is it merely that the bard has simply added yet another layer to the work? Regardless, the notes pour out of the instrument, a driving rain pounding onward. The music crescendos, reaching a high point struck hard and true, only for the melody to tumble downward into another rush of sound. Somehow, however, through the cacophonic assault, the bard adds his voice once more to the torrent of music flowing from him, adding a vocal refrain while shifting effortlessly to playing harmony, albeit a frenzied harmony, from his instrument

Follow the storm, I've got to get out of here…

Follow the storm as you take to the sky…

Follow the storm now it's all so crystal clear,

Follow the storm as the storm begins to rise…

As the storm begins to rise…

Aidric nods along with this song, his foot taking up the rhythm as well. Yes, this was more like it. As he listens he scans the room, but seeing everyone engaged in discussion so he just contents himself with listening.

As the words pass from the bard?s lips, a few more measures of hurried melody fill the room. But then, almost as sudden as the song storm started, it dissipates. It is the calm after the storm, when everything is still and serene. The bard provides only a few soft notes lingering in the room before a gentle slow flourish ends the performance.

Broderick gives Blaze a second look over once his ancestory is mentioned, dogs aren't his speciality animal wise, but he gives an approving nod anyway. With the bard on stage turning from lyrics to instrumental he almost misses that subtle cue from Evelyn, but offers her a faint smile once he does and introduces himself, figuring thats as good a place to start as any. "Your Eminance," he starts, offering a bow, "Broderick Tracano, Knight of St Paulus. I trust our weather is not too cold for you?" Immediate pleasantries down he urns more to what you mgith call business, "I hope I am not intruding, but I have spoken with a fellow of my Order who spoke with you at the Queen's wedding feast. He was quite taken by yourself so I wished to see just who had affected him so."

"Pfft," Michael snorts. "There's not a coin struck that's worth so much as the word of a l'Corren; but suit yourself," he counters good naturedly and then applauds as the song comes to a close.

When Philippe is done, Norrick applauds and steps forward and bows to his Couviere counterpart with a companionable smile. "Well played," he says and then to the crowd "Master Phillipe Giscard," he says eliciting further applause before the judges gather to discuss the night's winners.

There is a bow given, and Philippe takes his leave from the stage. He remains pleasant, with a smile for those offering applause, as well as a return bow to Norrick, as he steps off. However, rather than pandering to the crowd much more, he returns the lute to his back. He did well…but he knows he could have been better. And…chances are…so do the judges.

When the judges have reached their conclusion Norrick re-takes center stage, "We had many great artists this year and so let us get to what we all are waiting for and announce the winners," he pauses for effect, tugging his moustache before he carries on, "First the compositions; there were many good works, but we judges award the prize to Lord Sir Aidric Carling for his telling of the romance of our beloved Queen Alysande and the puissant King Jaren," he announces with a bow to the royal couple and one more to Aidric. "Well done my lord," he says, and gets a nod in return from the Carling knight. There is scattered applause more than few may remember it was Norrick who had performed the ballad version of the tale at the wedding not long before.

The bard moves on.

"Next is the craftsmen, many fine choices this time around, but the prize, goes to Master Godfrey of Stonewall for his fine armor," he says before adding, "Though I am sure Master Travers will be not so forlorn by his loss as a Tracano has at last noticed his rings," he says giving a wink to the goldsmith who scowls back.

"Next the drawings and paintings," he says. "This category saw many fine works from many high born ladies," a bow there for those ladies, "But after considerable deliberation we have decided to award the prize this year to Lady Emilia Cassomir," he says bowing to the lady, before he smiles then and comes to the performances. "The performance, this was a close one, but it is the decision, of my colleagues and I that Lord Gabriel's, Murnordian ditty is the winner," he says before he gives him a bow as well. "Now, the prizes will be presented at the Tourney Ball but lets have our winners up here to take a bow."

Alina winks at Bella— the two women know Alina will take the offer, of course, but she's bound to make sure no other bids that merit consideration come in.

However, a favor from Michael is worth more than mere coin.

Hashim looks rather surprised at Evelyn's comment on Blaze's ancestry, "From my lands? That is a surprise. Such fine animals are very rare in Alhazred. Still, it is a blessing to have such a companion." The Prophet's attention turns to Broderick, and he inclines his head to the man, giving that same gesture of greeting that was exchanged between himself and Evelyn earlier, "Blessings of the One be upon you, Lord Broderick. I believe you refer to Sir Destrian Rosendal? We did enjoy a pleasant conversation at the wedding feast." He adds with a bit of a grin, "But no, it is not too cold. In the deserts of my homeland, it can often get quite cold after the curtain of night descends. Often leaving frost upon the ground at Sunrise."

Gabriel blinks. He won? That was… unexpected. Especially competing with someone who was a very talented bard. Giving Alina a glance, he moves away from her and then up onto the stage, where he stands with the other winners, and then takes a bow. First in the direction of Alysande and Jaren, and then to the audience at large. A part of him wondered if winning this officially classified him as a Warrior Poet or some such thing. He continues to mull that over as he heads back towards Alina.

With Norrick announcing her as winner, Emilia's eyes do widen just a hint. And oh…she is soo not looking to Raelyn to see any sort of 'I told you so look' from her sister. Nope. A hand simply brushes that favor, surely it is bringing her luck, as she makes her way up as biden to accept the acknowledgement. There is just a mild incline of her head towards Jaren and Alysande, just a flickering tug to the corners of her lips. A graceful curtsey given to all as Emilia bows her head in the unearthly turn of movement. Managing to not flee upon being besieged by bidders for the piece once she steps away, but remaining ever stoic as she politely and perhaps surpisingly diplomatically deals with them.

Broderick angles himself just slightly so he can still converse with Evelyn and Hashim as the results are announced. He flicks his eyes to the winners in turn, giving Aidric a faint smile as well, although once they're over his eyes seek out Tia for a moment. He fails to find her in the crowd though and so turns back to the conversation at hand. "Sir Destrian yes," he confirms, "one I must confess is only new to my acquaintance, but we share a trade as it were. Perhaps, one day, my searches might bring m to your lands nad I might see such a thing, for while I have seen frost oft enough, it has always followed cold days."

Long confident strides take Aidric up the stairs to the stage, he allows the armorer to make his clumsy bow and shuffle off the stage before he bows next deeply and with the flourish of a practiced courtier, first to the Queen and King and then to the rest of the crowd, before his attention turns back to the royal couple. "Your Majesties," he says, taking a knee. "It would do me an honour to accept my tome as a gift for your wedding and a remembrance of your beginnings both for you and your heirs for many years to follow."

Raelyn looks - smug, as she looks at Emilia, as her sister is announced the winner of the artistry event. She gives her a 'See, I Was Right' sisterly look even if Emilia is not looking her way … Raelyn knows Emilia knows she's giving it to her. Yet, Raelyn is altogether pleased for Emilia's success and prize. She tells Stephen, "We are blessed," and that, simply, is her statement on Emilia's win. No more, no less.

Evelyn inclines her head to the Prophet, pleased for her time with him. Her father, no doubt, will be proud in the manner to which she represented their family to such an esteemed individual. But, Broderick's conversation with the Prophet is interesting, as well.

Alysande smiles at Aidric, taking the tome from him. "We thank you, Lord Aidric, for this gift. We will have copies sent to the Royal Library in Summerseat, and this original will go on display in the menagerie."

Aidric bows his head and rises, smiling. "Thank you your Majesty," he says before he too takes his departure from the stage leaving Norrick to wrap up the festivities.

The old bard says, "Thank you to our gracious sovereigns, to the participants and all those who attended, food and drink is being served as we speak, please enjoy the evening and thank you all once more," and with that he bows and he and the other judges descend to mingle.

"Well, I would fear that a Gate-finder of the Edge operating in Alhazred may well cause some consternation. But travel for pleasure or diplomacy would no doubt be most welcome." The Prophet replies to Broderick, applauding for the winners of the competition as appropriate before looking back to the Tracano, "Your people have been most welcoming thus far. It has been a pleasant surprise to find open minds and hearts here." He looks to Evelyn and Broderick once more and inclines his head, looking apologetic, "And now I fear I must excuse myself, for I have an appointment with the Shazadeh this evening that I must see to. The One's blessings upon you both." He bows once more, and then moves to make his way back towards the Palace.

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