"Oh! Oh my..." Ieana looked to scene above then back to those who were still standing, and quickly flew down to Darvesch. "This would appear to be a matter better-suited to an individual of your expertise, now wouldn't you agree?"
With a nod to his now flaming axe, she touched his armor, and the dwarf once again beheld the power of flight!
Lureene looks up at the sky where the rent in reality is opening. She thinks wryly I don't think the citizens of Port Eldarion will ever forget this day...assuming any of them survive.
Knowing her spell energy is being depleted rapidly, she looks over at the trebuchet and sees it still cocked, ready to fire! She sends a swift command to Grak, who flies off to obey her. As she casts another spell, a golden nimbus of light radiates from her body. She then turns to Isaac, who is currently being tended to by Amhranai.
"Marshal! Can you operate that trebuchet?"
Cast Light of Mercuria on herself.
Mouth agape, Isaac looked from the rift to Lureene, to the trebuchet, and finally to the control rod that Amhranai held. He might not be a mage, but he certainly knew a great deal about spellcraft and how to jury-rig magic items. And as for operating siege engines... well, he wouldn't have made it to the rank of Major if he didn't have at least a basic understanding of their tactics and operation.
Even though he still felt woozy from blood loss, he managed a pleasant enough smile for the lovely lady. "I like the way you think, Lureene! Amhranai, would you pass me that control rod? I need to study it for a moment..."
"Betrayer-cursed for sure." Saliva pooled in the elven woman's mouth, which she promptly spat out in the direction of the maiar and the yawning rift behind her.
Returning her attention to Isaac's mangled neck, Amhranai removed her gloves and placed a hand against the ruined flesh. A plain band on the elf's finger began to glow as she called upon the power stored in the ring, channeling its energy into the marshal. Once done, Amhranai handed the half elf the control rod before producing a waterskin, with which she washed away the blood on Isaac's neck as well as the blood on her hand.
Amhranai nodded to herself satisfactorily and put her gloves back on. Leveling a smile at the marshal, the elf jutted her chin at the trebuchet looming overhead and said, almost wistfully, "They never let us play with siege engines, so have at it."
"OK cutie," Sasha said, the handsome young elf she'd freed regaining his feet, "you go down below and we'll handle things up here!"
With a wink, she noted that Grak was already freeing the boy strapped to the boulder, so she instead dove and swung thru the timbers of the colossal trebuchet's uprights to begin cutting the ropes of the last hostage. "Oh just you watch, this is going to be something!"
S 1 1d20 + 15 + 2 ⇒ (3) + 15 + 2 = 20 GH
S 2 1d20 + 15 + 2 ⇒ (4) + 15 + 2 = 21 GH
"Pro-say Sol-is Hos-sa-na"
The closing of the wounds on his neck garnered a sigh of relief from Major Hlokenar. "Thanks," he said simply as he accepted the mithril control rod. Numerous gems ringed one end of it, but it was thicker than he had expected and barrel-shaped.
"Oh, it's like a spyglass!"
"Pro-te-go Sanc-tus Cau-sa"
Even as Grak severed the last of the boy's bonds with Malinda's help, Isaac sighted the black rift in the glass, adjusting its length until it came into sharp focus. Immediately, the sound of a hidden clockwork mechanism ground to life as the central portion of the roof pivoted counter-clockwise, and the support base contracted, increasing the weapon's pitch to engage an airborne target. A cry of consternation escaped Sasha, who had to check herself in order to keep from getting bowled over.
"Let's hope a single shot is enough," he grumbled. Yet even as he did, the gate was completed and he could spy their enemy, the angel of death!
"FLIERS, KEEP CLEAR OF MY FIRING ARC!"
As the chorus overhead sang out, Isaac swung his hand downward, shouting, "FIRE!"
"Glo-ri-a in re-sur-rec-tem!"
At once, top of the tower shuddered and the trebuchet shuddered, its great boom tearing thru the morning air as it flung its payload out over the Daifiri river. The fallen angel O'beilumanji had referred to as Lucretia just barely had time to raise her scythe before the enormous boulder impacted, shattering in mid-air amidst a profane oath and a cloud of debris and black feathers!
Isaac nearly dropped the control rod in his excitement. "A DIRECT HIT!!!"
Reflex DC 15
S 1d20 + 10 + 2 ⇒ (16) + 10 + 2 = 28
targeting DC 25 1d20 + 7 + 4 ⇒ (20) + 7 + 4 = 31 Alis
crit? 1d20 + 7 + 4 ⇒ (10) + 7 + 4 = 21 no
dmg 60 + 4 = 64 threat, Alis
"Pro-say Sol-is Hos-sa-na"
Even as Lucretia reeled from the midair collision, plummeting towards the citadel's plinth below, Prince Amthyrian streaked forward wings and armaments ablaze like some meteor.
"Pro-te-go Sanc-tus Cau-sa"
Although it went against his nature to strike a woman, a fallen angel was helpless damsel and the woman whom in his heart of hearts he knew would change his future was depending upon him.
Calling upon the power of his luminous Father in Heaven, he brought Atharos crashing down in a blast of holy radiance that sent Lucretia screaming to the ground in pain, the very stones below her shattering from the impact, her form lost within a cloud of dust and debris!
"Glo-ri-a In Un-um Di-em!"
readied charge 1d20 + 13 + 4 + 2 + 1 + 4 + 6 - 1 - 2 - 4 ⇒ (9) + 13 + 4 + 2 + 1 + 4 + 6 - 1 - 2 - 4 = 32 Alis, charge, higher ground, diviner's insight, smite, neg level, power attack, female opponent
dmg 2d10 + 7 + 4 + 14 - 1 + 6 + 4d6 ⇒ (4, 3) + 7 + 4 + 14 - 1 + 6 + (6, 3, 6, 1) = 53 vital strike, Alis, smite, neg level, power attack, alignment channel + channel smite
falling damage 20d6 - 10 ⇒ (3, 4, 2, 5, 1, 4, 6, 4, 6, 5, 2, 5, 2, 6, 3, 1, 3, 2, 5, 3) - 10 = 62 DR
Next Up: Isaac, Tyralor, Everyone Else, Enemy?
MAP: Arrowhead Citadel, (Round 481)
NOTE: The point of impact is outside the line of sight of pretty much everyone but Tyralor. It is also obscured as per a fog cloud. If anyone wants to take/ready action or delay then please say so.
"La-cri-mo-sa, la-cri-mo-sa, in ex Do-mi-num!"
As the magical trebuchet reset itself and the last chords of Alis' song resounded across Port Eldarion, virtually everyone atop Arrowhead Citadel flew or ran to the northwest, anxious to see what had become of Lucretia. Certainly she had endured an assault mighty enough to fell a dragon, yet was her threat truly ended?
Straining to see into the cloud of ash, Alis called out to the man closest to the scene, Tyralor, yet the prince shook his head 'no'. Alis gritted her teeth. "Tyralor can see thru smoke and flame, but he does not see a body!"
As Darvesch and Ieana examined the crater, attempting to discern if there was any spiritual residue that might verify Lucretia's demise, those surviving soldiers awakened from the mist by Alis' hymn began to pour out onto the battlements. Anxiously, the other remained vigilant, on-guard for any surprises.
That's when the sound of the air being torn asunder, and the call of a ragged voice froze the blood in your veins.
D 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (10) + 11 = 21
I 1d20 + 21 ⇒ (2) + 21 = 23
Stealth 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (20) + 15 = 35
Perception Checks: -5 distracted, +2 GH, -2 unfave (crowd)
A 1d20 + 15 + 3 ⇒ (11) + 15 + 3 = 29
M 1d20 + 14 ⇒ (1) + 14 = 15
I 1d20 + 13 ⇒ (12) + 13 = 25
L 1d20 + 8 + 3 ⇒ (5) + 8 + 3 = 16 alertness
T 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (3) + 10 = 13
M 1d20 + 13 ⇒ (18) + 13 = 31
S 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (10) + 11 = 21
Initiative Rolls (Fliers only)
A 1d20 + 10 + 2 ⇒ (6) + 10 + 2 = 18 GH
L 1d20 + 2 + 2 ⇒ (6) + 2 + 2 = 10 GH
T 1d20 + 2 + 2 ⇒ (20) + 2 + 2 = 24 GH
Enemies 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (16) + 6 = 22
Atharos 1d20 + 13 + 2 + 2 ⇒ (11) + 13 + 2 + 2 = 28 GH
Scythe 1d20 + 20 + 2 - 4 ⇒ (8) + 20 + 2 - 4 = 26 charge, power attack
dmg 2d10 + 8 + 12 + 2d6 ⇒ (4, 1) + 8 + 12 + (6, 1) = 32 power attack, vicious, sneak
Fort DC 22
T 1d20 + 13 + 2 ⇒ (4) + 13 + 2 = 19
Theme: Final Vengeance
As black feathers cast a chill shadow over Lureene, time seemed to slow down. The events of the past few months since she had arrived in this world raced thru her head and Alis' scream seemed like a distant echo. In an instant, a wave of heat washed over the succubus, as though she stood before the very fires of judgment.
In an instant, the past few months since she had arrived in this world, her trials and the friendships she had made flashed before the succubus' eyes. Was this the end?
The din of hardened steel and brittle crystal shattering snapped her out of it. Before her, Lureene could see Prince Tyralor's fiery wings and coppery mane. Yet even as her heart rose in her chest, she heard crystal striking stone as bits of his resplendent armor crumbles away. With a ragged gasp, the brave warrior's wings dissipated and he fell, sword still in hand, his regal tunic rent by a mortal blow!
When Alis cried out from behind her, the panicked succubus looked up fully expecting to meet her doom. Yet instead, she found Lucretia clutching the haft of her scythe, its adamantine blade shattered beyond repair.
Even as flames from her weapon began to consume her, Lucretia shook her head, in stunned silence, teeth clenched as she looked at the stricken Prince. With her form rapidly crumbling away before the retributive wrath of a failure impossible beyond imagining, she pointed a finger now burned to the bone, and gasped something only Lureene could understand.
With that final gasp of hatred, Lucretia and her fell weapon crumbled, her ashes scattered by the gusting of Lureene's golden wings.
Lureene is stunned...stunned by the near death experience and also by Lucretia's final words. As she floats down towards the top of the Citadel, her golden wings locked in a reflexive defensive measure to prevent crashing to the ground, it seems for everyone looking up towards the final confrontation between the diametrically opposed forces, Lureene had lost the ability to fly....
He...the Prince gave his life for me...to stop HER...'LISSSSS....
She lands hard on the battlement surface, her eyes affixed on the fallen form of Prince Tyralor. Half-running, half stumbling towards him, she reaches his body. On seeing his rent form, she finally collapses at his feet, tears streaming down her cheeks.
After the air cracks, the fires burn, and Darvesch hears Alis cry out in horror, he flies up as quick as the spell will let him, "Oh, Kahn.. no.." thinking the worst had happened to her. When he arrives to see Alis knelt down at Tyralors broken body, tears as rivers on her face, his fear dissipates. Fear now replaced with a stubborn warriors confidence that the demon's blow wasn't enough to fell the mighty warrior. He places a hand on Tyralors chest, "Get up," is all he says as he tries to heal his wounds.
CMW 2d8 + 7 ⇒ (3, 5) + 7 = 15
At Darvesch's touch, the bloody wound on Tyralor's chest closes partially, yet the Prince shows no signs or reviving. Tyralor's head cradled in her lap, Alis could not have hidden her despair from even a deaf, blind man. As tears splashed onto Tyralor's face, she cried out, "I– I already tried that! Vigilaveris, mea Dominus... TYRALOR, WAKE UP!"
M 1d20 + 14 + 2 ⇒ (17) + 14 + 2 = 33 GH
D 1d20 + 8 + 2 ⇒ (9) + 8 + 2 = 19 GH
I 1d20 + 1 + 2 ⇒ (4) + 1 + 2 = 7 GH
L 1d20 - 2 + 2 ⇒ (8) - 2 + 2 = 8 GH
S 1d20 - 1 + 2 ⇒ (6) - 1 + 2 = 7 GH
K: Arcana DC 30
M 1d20 + 5 + 2 ⇒ (5) + 5 + 2 = 12 GH
D 1d20 + 11 + 2 ⇒ (20) + 11 + 2 = 33 GH
I 1d20 + 13 + 2 ⇒ (18) + 13 + 2 = 33 GH
L 1d20 + 11 + 2 ⇒ (13) + 11 + 2 = 26 GH
I 1d20 + 26 + 2 ⇒ (13) + 26 + 2 = 41
Isaac watched as Tyralor fell from the sky and wasted no time rushing to the side of his comrades. Once he finally caught up with Darvesch he knelt down next to the lot of them.
He was horrified by the fact that the prince had given up so much for them and felt it was almost unfair, to lose even more people over a seemingly pointless war.
Taking a moment, trying to tune out the sadness that was around him, he tried to concentrate on what might have plagued their good prince.
Isaac tried to keep his face calm and serious, he was in solider mode and couldn't let his emotions cloud his judgement. "My lady... it seems our good Prince might be cursed... He still lives but I'm unsure for how long or what it'll take to wake him..." He looked to their priestess with a hopeful look in his pain filled eyes, hoping she would have answers for them. Isaac just hoped that his calmness about the situation would rub off on his teammates and not come off as heartless.
Amhranai voiced a small exclamatory cheer as the large missile drove the maiar to the ground before a sobering thought cut short her elation. Never a sure thing until you see the body. She launched a booted foot into O'beilumanji's ribs before setting off to join the others. I'll be back for you.
In no particular hurry, the elf casually made her way over to the tower's edge only to pause at the blood-curdling cry echoing across the sky. Even as Tyralor flew to answer Lucretia's challenge, Amhranai found herself moving swiftly to those others bound to the earth. Watched helplessly as the paladin fell, but not before destroying the maiar. Steeled herself against the despair she now waded through, as she had done countless times before.
Amhranai grasped her medallion, soft light issuing from its center, inhaled sharply and then exhaled slowly. Walk with me once more, Iscandu. Moving to Tyralor's side, the elf knelt opposite Darvesch and laid a hand on the Prince's brow, ignoring the ragged cry from Alis, Issac's cool assessment and the pensive stares of the others. With Iscandu's aid, she sought the Prince's sleeping mind but found her way blocked. It was then that she decided what her next course of action must be and summoned the energy required.
Cast Remove Curse
Consternation furrowed Ieana's brow. "Well this defies all logic! Amhranai successfully removed the maiar's curse, I dispelled the remaining enchantment upon him, yet there persists some manner of transmutation that binds him in stasis, one beyond mortal magic!"
"You didn't try everything." Darvesch says gruffly, after receiving a verbal lashing at the hands of his Frænka. "You didn't kiss him." He faces Alis, "Remember when I was a rat?" Darvesch hopes she understands what he's trying to get at, because he sure as hell wasn't aware of what she did when that happened.
Lureene wipes the tears from her face and turns a puffy-eyed look to the dwarven inquisitor and the handsome half-elf. While it is clear she is extremely worried about the Prince's fate, the memory of the event triggered by Darvesch does bring a smile to her face, albeit a bit forced. "I can assure you Darvie, and Isaac, if anything could rouse the Prince, it would be a kiss from 'Lis!"
Even as Darvesch's suggestion heralded a look of dawning realization on the Princess' face, the Professor frowned deeply. Dwarves weren't particularly renowned for their humor, but neither were they known for their tact. Doing her best to maintain a proper tone of respectfulness in the face of such gravitas, Ieana began, "Mr. Hellhammer, Lady Ourson, while that is a... heartwarming sentiment, I hardly think that this is the time or place for fairyboo–"
"No, it's true!" Sasha interjected, suddenly kneeling beside Alis and opposite Lureene, their hands in hers. "This giant witch put a ratty doom on Darvie, but when Lissi made with the kissy, it was all laaaaa! and then some goddess made us dinner. But I think the dinner part might have happened the next night."
As all eyes blink at the redhead's dizzying proof, she simply nods with satisfaction. "Yep, that's all there is to it!"
Theme: Soundscape to Ardor
For a woman who was practically raised to be the center of attention, the Princess of Silverwake suddenly found herself fighting down a rising flight of butterflies within her stomach. It was everything she could do to stay somewhere in between beet-red and ghost-white. Quietly, will calming the raging sea of her emotion, the matters that Tyralor had confided surfaced in her thoughts.
His own mother was tortured by the Ruby Coil... Rites performed upon her that her son would be born a vessel — host for a duke of Hell... Yet Queen Karayan was a holy seer in her own right, and...
"...she said he would meet a woman who would change his life." Her voice was barely a whisper, but as she gazed afresh at newly healed wound on his chest, her violet eyes grew wide. There, her delicate fingers could still trace the pattern of a golden sigil still faintly visible even thru the new scar.
There were two seals above his heart before! The Coil's is gone, but the other one...
Her own heart now thundered as the full meaning of what Lureene had related to her became clear. "Centuries of toil, ruined? Their toil ruined!" Alis gave Sasha's hand a squeeze before releasing it to clasp the diamond pendant that hung near her own racing heart — the Tear of Súmalya.
With a gentle smile to her dear friends, hope once more in her eyes, Alis said simply, "Thank you."
As she leaned forward, wavy tresses spilled forward around Tyralor's face — a golden curtain to veil a royal kiss.
"Your life begins anew, brave Prince..."
~ End Book One ~
The sun was high and the day hot as the bells of the distant pantheon tolled mid-day. Beneath Elsemar's equatorial rings, only the occasional cloud offered a brief respite to the porters laboring to unload the galleon, Her Lady's Grace, at the palace docks.
It was the third day since the Zephrys had arrived to find Port Eldarion held captive by a mad man... the third day since nearly three dozen soldiers were brutally cut down... the third day since the whole of the city had witnessed their deliverance in a clash between Heaven and Hell atop Arrowhead Citadel...
News of the dramatic confrontation, of the arrival of not just a new governor but a royal member of King Aramandil's own house, and of the Princess' exotic compatriots was the talk on every street corner, and in every village and town along the rivers and roads:
'A choir of angels sang! The sky split open! Angels and devils fought!'
'Marshal Hlokenar stowed-away on a pirate ship to rescue his sister, then came back to bulls-eye that demon!
'I heard they fought the spawn of Dagôn, battled a dragon, and sent the Freebooters fleeing round Reaver's Shiv to get here!'
Forty soldiers got killed just at Arrowhead, but the Commodore got himself raised by his kin. So much for going down with the crew.
'Did you hear? The Princess has a dwarf for a body guard, a snake-woman for a vizier, and her lady-in-waiting is an odd beauty too — a golden-winged muse!'
'That shifty-looking elf from The Flats was the real hero! They'd have never gotten past the front gate without her!'
'The Princess woke that slain prince from the dead with a magic kiss, but yet he had no recollection of her! Damn shame...'
The gnome scrunched his nose and held up his hands. "My dear, it is a testament to your prowess as a professional ah... sneak that a woman of such ravishing beauty could remain hidden in plain sight!"
Satisfied with his own eloquence, the short-statured scholar sank back in one of the luxuriantly upholstered chairs bordering the peristyle gardens of Villa Sempronius. The cool breeze from the enchanted wicker fan he had purchased that morning was nearly as refreshing as cool chunks of pineapple he was enjoying. Still, while the household servants of the Councilor's Villa were quite attentive, he would have rather in making certain his footrest had enough pillows, he would have much rather been standing on the far-side of the rosewood dressing screen behind which Lureene and Sasha were being fitted for gowns appropriate to attend a royal investiture.
"Vicereine," he said to himself with a sigh, "it does have a nice ring to it..."
Lureene shook her head in a gesture of bemusement even as she shifted her wings for what it seemed like the umpteenth time while the seamstress continued measuring her for the gown. She wished the elvish tailor Laithoron from back in Caen Carrinac was here. She wasn't really sure whether she could look elegant and yet not trip over herself at the same time.
"Sash...if it's all the same to you, I would prefer NOT to be the subject of all these rumors." A golden winged muse...hardly. She smiles and replied good-naturedly, Besides, Grak helped you out there!"
She turned to look around. "Say, where is Grak anyway I– Ow! What are you– OW!!!" The sound of a seamstress squeaking in terror as the redhead put her in a headlock gave the others pause. "Yeah, doesn't feel good, does it?"
Shaking her head as the smaller woman apologized and got back to work, she complained, "How do they expect us to just stand here like this? It's been hours!"
|Naiobe Sempronius Eldarion|
"Oh this is nothing, my dear!" Even as Lureene spoke with Sasha, an unfamiliar voice called out, approaching from the atrium that abutted the gardens. "Just wait until you are swarmed by sycophants hoping to influence the Princess thru her confidants. I daresay you will long for moments of repose such as this. Isn't that right, Councilor Eluchíl?"
At the sharp-intake of breath and nervous flutter from the seamstresses, Lureene ventured a glance around the privacy screen. Approaching was not only Eladwen, the Councilor of Dafar and the lady in whose villa you were staying, but another noblewoman as well.
Where Eladwen was tall, fair-skinned, and possessed of the more angular build of a full-blooded elf, the woman accompanying her was of about the same height as Alis. Although she was garbed in a white robe that partially hid her figure, it was not difficult to see that she was possessed of the more shapely form of a human. Framed within the metal crewelwork of her hood was the face of a woman with elvish features, yet Lureene could make out the tip of a pointed ear, the drape of long, brown hair, and a light olive complexion. She at once reminded Lureene of the dark-haried beauties of Sasha's home country, but also of Lilyana, were she older.
"Indeed, Lady Naiobe." Although the Councilor smiled, the act almost made it seem as though the shorter woman's comment worried her. "In these circles there is no favor that does not also carry a price. I am not certain that I would choose to relax, at any rate, by getting fitted for yet another gown of armor..."
The tall elf gave a slight nod to Gelik who had regained his feet in order to bow to the two ladies, the sash from his new toga draped over one arm. Looking up to meet the bright blue eyes poking from around the screen, she asked, "Lady Ourson, I trust that you and your staff are finding these accommodations to your liking? If you are decent, I would like to introduce you to the first daughter of our city, the Honorable Lady Sempronius Eldarion."
|Naiobe Sempronius Eldarion|
"Oh please, Eladwen," the shorter lady chided, "someday others will think me old when introduced in such endearing terms!"
As light hazel eyes met Lureene's, a demure smile revealed the faintest wrinkles of middle age around the Lady's eyes. She was obviously far from old, yet she was clearly no one's young daughter either. It suddenly occurred to Lureene why Alis had seemed so perplexed aboard the White Pearl when the succubus teased her about getting to look forward to being a wrinkled old woman in another 50 years — Lady Eldarion must have been more than 150– no... closer to 200 years old yet she looked younger than Alis and Alexis' maternal aunt, Countess Rowan of Caen Carrinac!
"Ah, there you are! No need to be modest, my dear. Please, call me Naiobe."
Holding her hand out for the older woman to shake, she bows to the Lady in a gesture of respect. "It is an honor to make your acquaintance, Lady Eldarion....I mean Naiobe. As for the accommodations you have provided, you needn't worry in that respect; they have been most delightful!"
Once the Lady has acknowledged the formal greeting, she continues "Allow me to introduce my staff." She then indicates the tall redhead. "This is Miss Sasha Nevah, my bodyguard and assistant, and that charming fellow is Master Gelik Abherwing, my uhhh...my scholar!" she finishes up with an embarrased note.
I hope he did not take offense at that...
|Naiobe Sempronius Eldarion|
"Oh wow! Sempronius?" Sasha eagerly took the woman's hand and returned the gesture as if it was second nature to her, and began talking with the older woman rather excitedly in her native tonuge.
Even though Lureene only yet knew enough Malatestan to keep up with perhaps a third of the conversation, it was clear that Sasha was giddy as a young girl at meeting a friendly Malatestan face so far from home. The ranger was also quite excitedly about Naiobe's lineage. She beamed a big smile at the succubus and said, "See, she's just like Lissi and Lily, isn't that neat?"
L 1d20 + 2 + 5 ⇒ (16) + 2 + 5 = 23 familiarity
Lureene is not quite sure what the two women were conversing about as they were talking a little too fast for her to follow, what with her limited understanding of the Malatestan tongue.
...Or their dialect is an odd one, I am not quite sure...
She does breath an inward sigh of relief as one of the things with concerned her was Sasha's propensity to rub people the wrong way. As her sponsor, Lureene knew she was responsible for the ranger's conduct. I can only hope Sash wants to emulate the Lady's mannerisms.
She blushes at Gelik's compliment and replies, her face beaming with a radiant smile. "Ahh, Master Gelik, you know I am really NO angel, but i DOO appreciate the unsolicited compliment!"
|Naiobe Sempronius Eldarion|
|Naiobe Sempronius Eldarion|
Naiobe sighed softly and shook her head as she produced a scroll from within the folds of her robe. "Lady Eluchíl sent out couriers this morning bearing invitations to prominent members of our fair city. We are to have a luncheon with the Princess, an unofficial committee, if you will, prior to her Highness' actual investment."
The motion of the scroll drew Sasha's attention away from the rustling bush and she bit her lip for a moment before looking at Lureene like a cat trying to play innocent after having been caught with her paw in a fish bowl. "Oh... that? I uh... thought it was the bill so I um... set it aside. You know, for Lissi!"