(1867-09-28) Divine Father Protect Us
Divine Father Protect Us
Summary: Many a topic is spoken upon as the four young women get together, and the Divine Protection and guidance of the One seems to be what they need most by the results of it.
Date: 1867-09-28
Related: None directly
Players:
Adrienne  Clara  Emilia  Tiadora  

Study - Roseguard - Ironhold - Rivana
See Scene.
1867-09-28

While the off-circuit tournaments in Ironhold didn’t have quite the flare to them as a Circuit tournament, none of the exoticness of some recent Circuit tournaments and prizes were more practical to equipment aspiring and new knights might need, they did still prove to be exciting competition just with lesser known names. At current Lord Liam Haldis was favoured to win with the strong performance he had shown in the events to date, with little chance of others catching him in points with the few remaining events of the tournament. It could happen, but it was a long shot. With the mini-street fairs and banquet tables for the hosts guests, noble and common folk alike had plenty to enjoy themselves with. The festivities holding true to that reputation the Cassomirs had for hosting excellent parties and showing that the sitting Viscountess was up to the task of maintaining that reputation.

Various hosting duties did fall to all members of the mainline Cassomir family with Emilia and Devlin having been the hosts to some of the events. And other family members were also not immune to hosting and added tasks during these tournaments and festivals. But was it really a 'duty’ to see after a certain Tracano Princess and Duke’s sister as Emilia and Adrienne were presently doing? More like a fine 'cover’ and excuse for friends to catch up.

They had convened in one of the sitting rooms that may well be used as a study at times with a desk and small shelf of books on the one side of the room. A large tapestry covers the far wall from the fireplace with the other walls bearing a few landscaped paintings (very likely works by Emilia, as such could be found 'littered’ about the castle). Various snacks had been supplied along with the afternoon tea for the girls to enjoy without need for interruption. “I of admit, I am of looking forward to of the fair tomorrow of night. All of the street of performers should be out in of full,” and she may have better chance to get a certain woodsman to dance with her. Not that Emilia is going to actually admit to that.


“Is that the only reason?” The lilting question, delivered in a sing-song manner, is asked by that certain Tracano princess, as Clara’s eyebrow lifts in an inquisitive (and no doubt slightly teasing) manner. Clara herself sits rather comfortably in a chair…which means most definitely not all prim and proper royal-like, but more of a relaxed slump. It goes to show how comfortable she feels with her current compatriots that she can be more ‘Clara’ and less ‘Her Royal Highness’. “It seems to me that the fair would be a perfect opportunity to peruse said performers, while also having a bit of fun as well.” It was no secret that Clara’s unofficial position as Mistress of Ceremonies has been made official recently, so it is apparent that Clara means to combine a little bit of business with a little bit of pleasure. “We can call it ‘research’, if you want. After all, it is good to know what options are available, should an immediate need for a party arises.” And that particular comment is offered with a wry little grin. Clara is most certainly in fine spirits.

At least, today she is. There is a touch of a frown as the princess turns her eyes from Emilia to the other occupants within the room, addressing the group as a whole. “I am still somewhat remorseful I was not able to participate within the Hunt this year.” There is a pause, then Clara offers an explanation, though none is needed (nor asked for). “There was an issue with some provisions being held at the docks that were to be used for our Alhazredi guests. It seems that there was some confusion as to which shipment was going where and my proxy did not seem to be enough authorization for the captain of the vessel. However, through the combination of a rather helpful dock master and my presence, we were able to straighten out the mix-up.” There is a slight glance to both Emilia and Adrienne at mention of the ‘helpful dock master’, though Clara does not bring up anything else about the person. “It at least gave me ample reason to run my horse and my guard, since I couldn’t afford to be gatesick.” Not that Clara needed much of a reason to want to ride, but it was still a good reason, nonetheless. “Once I had that little situation under control, I came right back, but too late for the Hunt. Though I heard that it was a rather quick affair, what with Tia’s expert shooting.” Yes, Clara does hear things…and the sideward glance to Tiadora shows that Clara certainly did hear how well her Gerrell friend did in the Hunt. “You do realize that you will be expected to shoot in the tournament events now, right Tia?” A light giggle is given. “At least…I expect it, now.”


“I have an audience with their Prophet, to discuss religious matters,” Tiadora says proudly. “Outside of actual clergy I think I could answer any questions of faith or at least learn more of theirs. I look forward to it when we’re back in Sunsreach.”

And but of course, that hunt had to come up again. Tiadora turns a little pink and sighs. “I guess? It was a lucky shot. I can shoot but not anywhere near as good as any of you. Why bother? I'd rather cheer an event I know we’ll win in.” She says it with a tiny smile. “Someone needs to be in the stands to wave little ribbon sticks.”


One could almost forget the presence of another Cassomir lady in the room, so quiet and in thoughts is Adrienne, green eyes turned towards the window in obvious contemplative attitude. She wears for once a dress, not too impractical, and her dark brown hair is done in a more ladylike manner, strands at the sides pulled back, while the majority of her tresses is left to fall openly about her shoulders. Hearing Clara remark on Tia and the Hunt, the freckled Cassomir returns to the here and now, shooting the three others a glance. "You did very well, Lady Tia," she allows with a faint smile. "I was quite impressed. A got steady shot. You should compete in the next archery contests…" Said with a light smirk. It is not unknown that Adrienne abhors these contests.


“No,” is how Emilia answers Clara with that ever stoic mien. Certainly not expanding on what other reason or reasons might exist. “Quite of true, it is of a perfect of opportunity for you to see some additional of performers and perhaps find of some new options to call of upon for your needs.” She may regret it, but Emilia does ask,”Just how of often do you end up having to put together such of an impromptu type of party?”

“I am of glad you were able to of sort the matter of out.” A small quirk of her lips before she adds,”And I am of sure it gave you of a fine opening to check in on a particular Alhazred your of self and ensure he was yet of fine.” Mildly teasing her friend. “Perhaps not of the same, but we could do of a smaller hunt,” for something not so fearsome as boars,”or just a ride if wished to make of up for it. Though it sounds like you had quite of the ride already.”

Looking to Tiadora,”Oh? I think you shall enjoy your meeting with of him, the Prophet was helpful in addressing some of mine…. curiosities when the of contingent was of visiting here. “ Emilia offering after a moment,”He and the Archbishop of Sirrah do seem to be of friends from way of back.” Meaning he may be versed on most matters of the faith at a high level.

Dark eyes do take in her awfully quiet cousin, an almost switch in roles in some way…save the dress. Those were still not commonplace upon Emilia. Agreeing with what Adrienne says, “It was of an impressive of shot. And of why? For the same of reason we of compete in of the art of contests. “ Though to Adrienne goes,”Something upon of your mind, cousin. You are rather of quiet this of afternoon.”


“All right, all right,” the Normont girl says as she buckles under the peer pressure. “It was as just a lucky shot, though…”
She glances at Adrienne, almost glad the conversation is shifting away from her.


Clara, for her part, doesn’t continue with her part of the Gerrell peer pressure. She just offers that small smile, nods slightly, then turns back to Emilia. “So I like to talk to Kabede. I tell you one time about a minor infatuation and now every time I play hostess to the Alhazredi, it’s an excuse to go see him.” Clara may sound indignant, but the light red blush that is spreading across her cheeks, along with a coy deflection…Clara’s eyes downcasting to the floor. “I would have you know, Emilia, that not every time is an excuse.” Of course, there isn’t a flat out denial that she never used that excuse before. Interesting.

What is also interesting (and expected, as least from Emilia, probably) is the way Clara shifts topics. Shifting the focus away from her minor little crush back to a question previously asked. “Oh, impromptu parties are just the thing for newborn celebrations. I have never met a baby that could adhere to a set schedule.” In other words…she had an impromptu celebration set up for the little Crown Prince of Rivana…which was most certainly a more recent development. “So, you know, you can never be too prepared for a party. Of course, planning goes a long way towards the appearance of spontaneity.” Then the eyes flit up to Emilia. “A smaller hunt could be done, but not necessary. As you noted, I have had quite the ride already. Unless you wanted to use the hunt as another excuse to indulge in our exclusive company.” Yes…Clara has some particular thoughts when it came to the duty of entertaining her and Tiadora. Such a hard duty that was.

Finally, a shift to Adrienne. “Anything you want to talk about? I trust that all is well on the suitor front?” There isn’t any more elaboration on that….Clara is trying to not be a constant tease, it seems. Perhaps because she was just teased herself. “I haven’t heard much in and around Court as of late….which could be good. Or…just could be that there isn’t much to tell.”


It is apparent that Adrienne’s thoughts are engaged elsewhere, and when Emilia addresses her, there is a lift of a brow, as green eyes refocus on the touched Cassomir cousin. “No! It’s nothing,” the freckled Huntress is quick to contradict, and deny. “I’m just…” And here she exhales, eyes going distant again. “Wondering about what to wear at that Masque.. “ Which may very well hint at Some suitor indeed that is considered. Still, Clara’s subtle inquiry will be met with a shake of the head. “So far Raelyn hasn’t proposed any potential matches to me…” A statement that is given with a low grumble.


A faint look was given to Clara as there was the bit of a blush that appeared along with the coy deflection and attempt to change the topic around that Clara did. "But some of the times, it would of seem," Emilia points out to her friend. But Emilia doesn't press on the topic any further. Giving a slight nod on the matter of impromptu parties…and the recent arrival of the new Crown Prince, also known as her nephew. "It would be of no trouble to have of a smaller of hunt, or simply arrange for of a ride. It could be of done of later as of well, should you of both desire of an excuse to of return for of a time." Her dark eyes shifting between Clara and Tiadora on that, not that either needed an excuse, but having something 'official' to reference did help when schedules got cluttered up.

A brow rises just a little when Adrienne is so quick..too quick to deny that there was anything upon her mind. Allowing Clara’s words to serve as that additional bit of prodding to get her cousin to speak what is on her mind. But when the issue comes to light,”I did not know you had wish to be of going. Clara manages fine of ideas for costumes, I am sure she would be of willing to help of you. Or if you have of hopes of meeting up with someone of particular, I have been of told it is not of uncommon for costumes to be of coordinated so to find one of another during of the event. “ Emilia cants her head a little in hearing the grumble,”I believe Raelyn has had other matters have have been of a priority of late. But if you truly wish of a match to be of made more of quickly, I am of sure that she could of make that a focus since it seems to displease you that none have been of proposed of yet.”


“I wrote to my brother about a solid notion for my own suitors,” Tiadora chimes in hesitantly. “One of the Howlett grandsons, to become a Gerrell. I don't know a single one of them but it… Would help Normont greatly. I think.” She adds the last with a weak smile.

“And I asked my new-sister Dora to help make me a dress for the masque. I sent her that fabric you got me for my birthday, Clara.” She avoids the title knowing Clara would just tell her to drop it anyhow. They’ve been friends long enough Tia feels comfortable leaving it aside.

“Just have no idea if I should be something or just wear a fancy mask. I hear these things are -incredibly- debauched. But lovely. I'm going to bring my pastels and sketch,” she says with a nod to Emilia.


“Some of the times…” echoes the Tracano princess. Yes…Clara just admitted to the fact. It certainly takes the wind out of the teasing sails…but it also shows the level of trust Clara obviously feels with the fellowship of females within the room. A consideration crosses over Clara’s countenance, then a nod. “I think a ride…a more relaxed ride than my usual fare…would be best. Unless you all wish for another smaller hunt. We can take our time and make a day of it.” The suggestion is offered kindly…sincerely, even, though Clara does seem to know what she is doing. Which is providing yet another opportunity to avoid undesirable parts of duty while still keeping up appearances of duty. After all, didn’t she just say she used duty as a cloak for more desirable diversions?

The talk of the upcoming Masque does pique Clara’s interests. Moreso the fact that Adrienne and Tiadora both mention wanting to go. “Emilia does speak truly. It is not uncommon at all for couples to decide what to wear beforehand, then find one another once the Masque is underway. And not just couples. Why, last year for the wedding Masque, Emilia and I wear going to dress alike as identical wood nymphs, then perplex all by making it seem we were one and the same. We had gone so far as to agree not to speak and have minor customization performed so that we were both the same height and hair color.” Obviously…that meant that Clara would have elevated footwear, being slightly shorter than the stoic Cassomir. “It would have been delightful…had we made it to the Masque in time.” The reason why Emi and Clara didn’t make it is not mentioned outright. “We have something else in mind for this year…but it shall be a secret still.” A hint of mischief crosses Clara’s features as she divulges that little tidbit of information. “It will make it more fun.”

With that, Clara turns to Tiadora. “Oh, the silks I gave? Those would be lovely! Now, truly, a lot of patrons go with a certain idea in mind. Mythical creatures, persons of history, animals. Really, no tasteful concept is too far out of the realm of possibility. Perhaps a saint? That would fit wonderfully with the idea of the masquerade, yet still hold true with your devotion to the One, Tia.” Clara offers a smile, as she does confirm a statement. “It is true that there may be more private diversions offered at these Masques…but that is only if one wishes to partake of such.” A glance shifts from Tiadora to Adrienne, then Clara shifts, to speak to both of them at once. “I grew up in Varna, part of the duchy of Lonnaire. I know a bit of the tradition of the masque, even if I haven’t attended very many of them. Should you have any question, please feel free to ask me. I am more than willing to help, especially if it means that you would come. Everyone should experience the Masque at least once.” Then, a shift as Clara addresses Adrienne directly. “I would be happy to provide inspiration for you, dear Adri. If it helps, I can show you the masquerade gowns I had designed in the past…or design an original just for you. Anything you want…you just have to tell me what you wish to be and I will see to it that it happens.” Clara shifts and glances back to Tiadora. “You, too, Tia. Unless you rather let Dora design your ensemble. Seems to me a perfect opportunity to get to know each other better.”


Tiadora nods slowly at Clara’s idea. “I asked her if she would. She’s very familiar with them and it gives us a chance to, um… bond?” She’s not really sure how to take Symon’s wife just yet but is trying. “I do want to at least know what all of us are wearing, if we don’t all go through the Gate together.”


“It is not, that I wish for any matches, really, Emilia.”, comes the reply of Adrienne Cassomir, her tone quiet yet not without that faint irritated color to it, that makes it sound not quite as stoic as it should. While her green eyes show a bit of faint resignation as they meet the darker gaze of the touched Cassomir. A brow is raised, as if to make a particular point. Then attention shifts, as does the topic. “Wood nymphs?”, the freckled one echoes, looking intrigued as she takes in this particular information about the costumes of the previous masque. “Dryads, or the like? I had envisioned some of the kind. Would it be possible,” and here Adrienne looks towards Clara as she makes her generous offer of help., “that I could wear your costume from the wedding masque? It might be an amusing detail. An interesting distraction. And it would save you the bother of making up a new one for me.” She observes the exchange between Clara and Tiadora with a glance towards the latter. It may strike some as interesting, that Adrienne does not inquire at all about the customs of the masque. It will be after all the first time she will attend one.


With the masque and matches becoming a focal point of the conversation, Emilia does allow the topic of riding and 'sometimes’ excuses fall to the wayside. For now. Yes, Emilia caught Clara’s little admission. But it is Adrienne whom Emilia does comes to address, “Then mine, dear of cousin, if you do not wish for any particular match in of a hurry, I might of suggest that you try to not sound quite so of mouros when speaking about the lack of potential suggestions being put forth.” A faint nod is given with the point made in that look exchanged, adding softly,”And perhaps try to of enjoy of the time now and not worry of so about what matches may or may of not come in of the future.”

Matters of the masques as a whole are quite left to Clara, as the only one who had attended at least one before. “It would be of a shame for those of costumes and the time out into of them to go to of waste, they were quite of lovely and I do of think you would pull such of quite of stunningly. Being much a creature of the first already.” A bit of one of Emilia’s corner tugging smile like things given to her cousin. Emilia shakes her head slightly at Tiadora,”As of Clara was of saying, ours shall remain of secret til the masque of itself. “

Emilia does shift a bit,”But I am of reminded of something we spoke earlier upon.” Leaning to whisper setting softly just for Tiadora to hear,”He will be of going, and what of clues I found within of his room point to of an idea of a bear.” Giving just a slight look as she returns to her normal position, after departing that bit of information as she had promised to discover.


A bear. Tiadora nodded and filed that away for later. Mostly to avoid so she wouldn't fall over her feet. She registers something Clara said earlier and gasps in horror. “Dressing like a saint at a party like this is pure sacrilege!” She puts her hand to the medallion of St. Dannel on her necklace, her blue eyes wide. “I'll be a flower or something. Nothing so scandalous. My going is bad enough.”

She smiled over at Adrienne. “That’ll save some time and money. I understand these things can cost a small fortune to make. Wasteful display of wealth. I mean, not -wasteful-.” That was her mother’s influence taking. “I wouldn't get a dress made if Clara hadn't gotten me that lovely bolt. I need to replace the dresses I lost in Ostovor anyhow. That will be expensive…”

Most girls would be happy of the chance to update and refurbish their look. Not Tiadora. She looked unhappy about the costs and need for tailoring. “I already told Symon I'd send the bill. I’ve got a few things being sewn for day wear but nothing fancy left much.”


Clara blinks in surprise. True surprise. “I…I didn’t realize.” It is enough to actually bring the princess to silence. At least for the moment. It is rather unusual, to see the normally loquacious so reserved and quiet, but it is apparent that she is worried she offended Tiadora. Brown eyes flicker down to the floor and the princess shifts nervously in her seat. Clara isn’t about to cause another stir…..at least not now.

It is only after a few minutes of silence that Clara ventures to speak…and this time, she speaks to Adrienne. “I…I would be happy to give you the costume. I…don’t think you would want to use my shoes, though.” There is a pause, as Clara again looks down to her lap. “They are slightly elevated. To make me the same height as Emilia. But….we can get you different shoes.” Clara trails off into silence once more. It does seem that she is being perhaps overtly cautious, making sure she doesn’t misspeak. Most likely Clara overthinking things again.


"It's…", Adrienne begins, her eyes on Emilia. Then she just lets out a sigh and lifts her shoulders in a shrug. "Yes." Agreeing with her cousin's suggesting instead of offering clarification to the faint rebuke. Her lips do curve upwards a little. "You think so?", this she asks to Emilia's comment on costumes. "I'm a creature of the forest after all…" After which a low chuckle ripples from her lips. A nod then to Tiadora. "I lack inspiration to come up with my own designs, and what can be wrong to use a costume that will not be needed this time?" As to wear the same thing twice would be highly unlikely at masques. "A flower? How unique.", she offers politely then, before her green gaze shifts to to the Tracano princess. And her faint smile deepens with gratitude. "How nice of you, Clara! Not that I would have expected otherwise. I will manage to find some shoes to wear, but the costume should fit nicely. We are of similar height and built." It is after all not the first time, Adrienne would wear something Clara had worn before.


Dark eyes lightly shift between Clara and Tiadora at the adverse reactions which end up occurring at the suggested costume. “I have of heard how some do of seek to of shock with their of costumes and of behaviours, and I am of sure Clara can correct me if I am of wrong, but I of believe part of choosing of a costume is of having of the chance to be of something of one's of true of self or of a reflection of it.” A faint glance to Clara to see if Emilia was on mark about that. “In of that, I do not believe Clara’s suggestion for of you, Tiadora was of misplaced. Of all of the people, I am of knowing, you would be of true in such of a choice and portray and truly serve as reminder to who of think actions they would not of do any of other of day are of hidden behind of a mask that there is always someone of watching. Thus a reflection of whom and what you strive to be. Where for most of others, it would be of sacrilege for the of mockery in of their actions and of intent. Your very of reaction shows of how true you would be to such of an idea if taken up, giving it of the true respect and reverence deserved.” Rather diplomatically pointing out that particular angle and turn to it all, perhaps hoping to smooth over the feelings of both her friends in the process. “But I of know, one must also of dress and go as of something they are to be comfortable as of being. My own of costume will be of a reflection of part of what is within of me.” That being about as much as Emilia is going to say or give hint about her idea for her costume.

A small nod goes to Adrienne does come to agree with her. A flicker of understanding and knowing in the brief look, they and their family had suffered much and gone through yet more changes….they did need to enjoy what happinesses that came, even if they might not last. “Of aye, you are of indeed a creature of the forest. And none have seen the of costumes since we managed to miss of the masque of last year having arrived of to late to attend.” Meaning Adrienne will be the first to actually début the outfit. “It may of be that mine shoes will of work for you.”


“I’m sorry,” Tiadora says quietly as she looks at Clara. “You didn't mean anything by it.” Emilia gets a nod as she gives a miserable little sigh. “It's one thing to emulate the Saints and their virtues, but to dress like one, to say I'm as holy… It would be horribly Prideful.” They can hear the capitalization in her voice.

“Flowers are hardly unique,” she says with a soft frown to Adrienne “but thank you for trying to make me feel better.” Tia excuses herself to go visit the laid out refreshments, taking her time with selection. She knows she killed the pleasant mood and feels bad for it.

“I'm sure you will all look lovely,” she says politely. “No matter the costume. So are there games or is it just dancing and feasting? A contest of costumes?” Her weak attempt to salvage the conversation.


“Emilia is not mistaken.” A bit of Clara’s demeanor has returned, though she is still a tad of the reserved side of her usual norm. “The Masque is an opportunity to speak truly of yourself. As…as you all know, I don’t really see myself as a princess. I know that others do, but I was never raised with that expectation. So, for the masque, it is more of an opportunity to express who I really am, and not what people expect me to be.” The Tracano pauses for a moment, then offers another bit of information. “My first Masque I attended? I just found out who I was, really. I was still recovering from the shock that I wasn’t the bastard heir I thought I was, but rather a trueborn royal. It was all very overwhelming. I felt that my old life was in ruin, but I was determined to start anew. So, my costume that year? I dressed myself as a phoenix.” The symbolism does not gain any further explanation. There is none needed. “Really, the dryad was another reflection. Emilia had called me a pixie…and oft times has reminded me to let the pixie out within. So, that was the intent behind that.” However, there is no mention of her current plans, still, for this Masque. “It…is a matter of perspective. I don’t find it blasphemous to take on an image of a saint if I am striving to emulate his or her example. It is more that I am trying to present what I hope I can be, rather than believing I am as good or better. For…I will never feel adequate enough to believe I am better than anyone else.” Seems Tiadora is not the only one with self doubt.

With that, Clara turns to Tiadora directly. “You have no need to be sorry. Don’t ever feel you have to apologize for who you are.” Another pause, then an admission. “Truth be told, Emilia and I think a lot alike. I honestly thought that, if anyone could portray a saint and treat it with the respect and sanctity it deserves, it would be you, Tia.” Then, as an aside, Clara adds quietly. “Besides, how better to avoid potential debauchery and display piety than emulating a symbol of said piety?” A rhetorical question that needs no answer, but one posed honestly.

A glance is cast over towards Emilia as Tiadora states her belief that everyone would be lovely in their chosen accoutrements. It is a knowing glance, to say the least, but only to Emilia, perhaps…as Clara’s expression remains neutral. It would seem that the stoic nature of the Mistress of the Hunt is rubbing off on the Princess. “I am sure that you and Adrienne will be absolutely delightful. Especially with Her Grace assisting with your ensemble, Tia. Just as I know that Adrienne will be wonderful as a forest pixie.” Then a smile is given to Adrienne. “I should know. It takes one to know one.”


"Ah, I see," Adrienne says, her demeanor lighting up a little, when Emilia declares that the costumes of wood fairies had not been worn to the other Masque. "How could I forget…?" A hand moves to push a stray strand out of her view, the hairdo clearly not what she is used to. "I will see you later about those shoes then."

Tia's refusing of her complement is taken with a lift of a brow. "How can you say so? Every flower and each tiniest plant is unique.", the freckled Cassomir contradicts. Before the next questions have her lower her gaze, as one corner of her mouth lifts in a faint half-smile. She keeps out of the argument about the propriety of pious costumes, even if she does listen what Clara has to say. Adrienne catches the glance of the Tracano, and her smile actually deepens. "So you say."


A faint tug comes at the corners of Emilia’s lips when Clara brings up the matter of being called a pixie, noting softly,”Was not of my fault you had been forgetting of yourself.” Falling a bit quiet now as the others talked on the matter. Returning the look Clara gives her, that silent exchange when Tiadora gives that polite remark on looking lovely, though nothing is spoken to counter that either will be anything else…but lovely.

A hand lightly flutters in the air waving off Adrienne’s matter of forgetting about how Clara and Emilia had missed that masque. That small episode was certainly a matter most easily forgotten by most. “Of course, there is of plenty of time yet. “


“It wasn’t a greatly advertised affair, Adri….the fact of our delay to Lonnaire last time.” With that, there is a little smirk that is prevalent upon Clara’s lips. “The gatewardens didn’t want to cause a stir…and really, how would one announce that a princess of Rivana and the sister to the king took a week to arrive when it should have taken mere moments? You certainly can’t say that you ‘accidentally misplaced’ us.” The smirk widens to a full-fledged smile. “You could probably imagine the panic that would have caused, not to mention the conspiracies that it would have launched.” Clara nods once, as if confirming to herself. “No…best for it to not be mentioned. There was no harm befallen to us. For all we were aware at the time, it was instant.”

But far be it for Clara to let the topic of new wardrobes fall by the wayside. Those brown eyes fall upon Tiadora, with Clara smiling that slightly mischievous grin, accentuated with a slight tilt of her head. “You just let me take care of the fancy dresses, Tia. One knows I can certainly afford it and, with the newly minted royal Mistress of Ceremonies at your side, I am sure we can get all sorts of design choices in the latest fashions and the finest materials, all for cost or quite possibly less.” Then, in an echo of a statement she made earlier, Clara tips a wink to Tiadora. “We can call it ‘maintaining vendor relations’. It will give us a chance to replenish your wardrobe more to your liking, while giving me ample opportunity to inspect the quality and note which merchants are more willing to negotiate than others.” What goes unspoken is the whole business and pleasure mix once more. Because, as certain as there is night and day, Clara will be most likely gaining a new outfit or two for herself, or at least ideas for her fellow pixies…even those pixies that despise wearing dresses.


The generous offer of new dresses is lost in the dawning horror that a gate lost her two best friends for a week. Tiadora’s eyes widen with alarm. If the thought of dressing like a saint was met with mild alarm, this news has an almost full blown panic attack. “Divine Father protect us, I'm…. Riding. Always. Symon should bury it right back into the ground…”


Clara isn’t even finishing talking and Emilia is already giving her a LOOK in actually referencing just why they were late (which just means Emilia is looking even more stoically at Clara…if that were possible). Didn’t she know their friend’s fear of the faegates? Whelp….Clara is soon enlightened to the fact. Emilia is quickly from her seat and over by Tiadora with a hand upon her arm to try and help calm her,”No, Duke of Symon should of not. We came of through perfectly of fine, just of a little of slower that one of time. There is no of need to be of worrying of so. Of truly. “


Adrienne's eyebrows lift at Emilia's first reply about the incident. Even she probably did not know more of it than that Clara and Emilia had missed the Masque - a Masque even Adrienne herself had not attended. When Clara mentions, they had gone missing for a week, the freckled Cassomir's lips part as if she were about to ready a question - before her mouth shuts, green eyes flickering, as they flit down and then glance towards Emilia briefly.

"Even if I don't exactly enjoy faegate travel, it will save us time to get there. I mean… Lonnaire? So far into Couviere lands, I'd very much prefer the inconvenience to many weeks of travel.", Adrienne elects to opine then, towards Tiadora, her tone all matter-of-factly and rational. Waving off whatever odd feelings and questions arising from Clara's revelation from before by ignoring it completely in her response.


Oops. The realization that Tiadora and Adrienne were not necessarily privy to the ‘slight’ delay comes a little too late to Clara. But, rather than talk about it, because even Clara recognizes a ‘Do Not Talk!’ look from the normally stoic Emilia when she sees it, Clara employs social tactic 101 and just moves on….picking up from where Adrienne left off. “Months, depending on where in Rivana one starts from.” So, see? A week isn’t bad at all! Not that Clara is going to say that out loud. So, back to the masque and Lonnaire. “I can take all of us on a little sight-seeing tour. Maybe even ride out to the Varna forests and show you all some of my favorite places.” Clara takes to her feet, standing up in a bit of personal excitement. “We couldn’t go before…but there would be nothing stopping us now. We can do all sorts of things. Though…we won’t be able to go to the old manor.” The t’Myrin manor, in this case. “There was a fire the night I was rescued….taken away by Corvin. It…burned the manor to the ground…and I don’t know if it was ever rebuilt.” The Tracano appears a little wistful. But hey, she did not blush (or even bat an eye) when she mentioned the Wraith commander by name. Clara’s getting better!

“We can go shopping in Lonnaire, visit the cathedral…and play guessing games at the Masque. Try to identify who is who.” There is a slight grin at that. “I promise…it will be fun.”


“Um…” Tiadora takes her prayer beads in hand at her waist and runs them through her fingers in a calming gesture. “I… Suppose? It's better than weeks over land. Bandits. Um…. Food. Spoilage.” She weakly smiles. “A-and I’d like to add the Cathedral to my collection. I'm um, painting them all.”


“Or even of months, can you of imagine getting to of tournaments or how of stifled of trade would of be?” Even if a fair bit does occur over land and by boat. “I of imagine we all would end up of staying of home far more of oft. “ Emilia giving a nod towards Clara,”Lord of Lucas showed me much of the forest about of Lonnaire when I was of there last, there are of some lovely of areas. I would be interested to of see which called to you of the most. Though there were of a few of places we did not quite manage to get of to in mine of visit.” Just going with the whole talk of what they will do when they get there, and moving past that whole ‘missing’ time frame mentioned by Clara a few moments ago. “And I would of bet that Lonnaire would have quite the of selection in of being of Lady of Alina’s home, perhaps of ideas in of replacing things that were of lost.” The One help her, dresses. Emilia had rather back slide on that front since Venderos. “The Cathedral is of something to of see. Quite of lovely.”


The mention of Corvin does earn Clara a glance from Adrienne, the freckled Cassomir lady lifting a brow at the lack of a blush in the Tracano princess. "I am certain there are a lot of interesting sights to see," Adri remarks neutrally then, even if her gaze lingers for a moment longer on Clara. A faint smirk curves her lips at the remark about guessing games.

"At least you three will know mine.", the freckled Cassomir says, referring to the costume she will obviously be wearing to the Masque.


“I guess that’s up to, um, Dora?” Tia smiles weakly and offers a shrug. “I’m sure you’ll all be able to find me. If we don’t travel together.” Through the gate. A prospect she is now dreading more than before.

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