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Wardove's Rumble in the Jungle

Game Master Laithoron

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While he wasn't nearly as muscular as Isaac, Mal, or Darv, Sasha didn't mind clinging to the lithe mage in the slightest. As they alit on the rooftop above the peristyle garden, she looked out over the river and harbor in the distance and commented, "You know, I used to climb up onto the rooftop of my Mom's villa all the time and she'd always go ambushing me to teach me to mind my surroundings. Still, this kind of reminds me of the good parts of home."

Arms still wrapped around the elf, her boots putting her at eye level with him, she said, "Oh yeah! By the way, I'm Sasha Nevah, who are you?"


Dwarf Lightbringer
Greasha Torwold wrote:

The sound of a woman chuckling, turned Darvesch's head, and he found Greasha standing there. Rather than wearing a demure dress or the stained apron of a kitchen wench, her curves were now accentuated by a form-fitting, sleeveless coat of polished scale mail that glittered like diamonds in the sunlight. Beneath it, she wore a shirt of deep crimson, its broad, bell-shaped sleeves came down to her elbows and were partially open on the outside to show off her fit arms and keep her cool. Her knee-length pants-skirt was in the same style, and both were decorated with silver crewelwork in the same motif of House Amthyrian — a gnarled tree forming a firebird beneath Brightpool.

Although the tassets she had mentioned a few days ago were now absent, there was a sturdy mace slung on her right hip and a buckler on her left. The Lightbringer could also make out greaves on the front of Greasha's dark brown boots, and the glint of metal studs along the knuckles of her matching, long-cuffed gloves.

"We dwarves do have our secrets, your Highness, it's true. But I may have had some help this time."

Looking to Darvesch, a mischievous sparkle in her dark blue eyes, she gave a slight curtsy which caused her braid of thick, black hair to slip forward, the faceted silver ring at the end sparkling as it swung back and forth. "It's good to see you again, Darvesch. A little birdie told me you and your Frænka have some wild times when you're out on the town, so I figured a girl had best dress appropriately."

Darvesch smiles greatly, then looks down into his hand full of flowers, and his smile fades, "Somehow these just don't seem like enough."

Instantly he has an idea, "But, please accept these as a symbol of more to come. Much more," his smile finds its way back with a devious look in his eye.

For the remainder of the evening, Darvesch manages to find his way to the night of adventure Greasha was expecting. Afterwards, they enjoy a fantastically prepared dinner prepared by Giles. The evening is closed with piles of armour scattered about the floor.


Whilst Sasha and Arion were enjoying the sunset, Amhranai was walking home, and Darvesch and Greasha were finding adventure in the sprawling metropolis, Isaac, Lureene and Alis had finally bid the bulk of their guests farewell, now finding themselves in more intimate company.

"I must say, even though I am the one sporting the serpentine extremities, you wrapped-up Lord Gallo quite nicely, Lureene."


"Well," Gelik measured out some more tobacco for his pipe, giving a slight wave to the departing form of Lady Elendreth and her nephew, "at the very least I would say that keeping him distracted was of no small relief to Elendreth. Truth be told, I believe she was grateful someone else took Poe to task and..." he paused, searching for the right word, "diverted attention away from his many... many faux pas."


There was an uncharacteristic growl from the Princess as she tensed one hand, blonde waves trembling as she shook her head. "Gods, I could have throttled that boy..."

Turning to the the others who were still with her in the atrium, Isaac, Lureene, Gelik, Ieana, and Councilor Eluchíl, she said, "Well hopefully we at least impressed upon them that I mean business. Even if it can be advantageous to be underestimated, I didn't want any of them to feel I could be taken lightly. I'm just chagrined that we couldn't have won more allies, it still seemed to be a rather divided room by night's end, don't you think?"


Lureene is quiet and thoughtful, and the Princess can easily tell something is troubling her. Once they have bid farewell to the guests, she shakes her head as if to clear out some depressing thoughts.

"Sorry 'Lis, I...I guess I was not very prepared today. I really botched things up with the guests." She turns to face ALis and the Princees can see she is close to tears. "Ohhh...'Lis, I...I...just don't know what I am doing here! I am no noble lady, despite what my Mother says!"


Alis gave her friend a sympathetic look and cupped Lureene's her hands in her own. "I'm so sorry that happened to you, El. I had intended for you to sit with me, but it seems someone thought it would be funny to put your name in Gelik's hat."


Ieana snickered as her short-statured cohort grew red in the face.

"You wound me, Highness! I have nothing but abiding tenderness in my heart for Lureene. While I may have corrected the blank slip that Amhranai thought she could get past me, it was not I who engineered that bit of tomfoolery."


Lureene brushes away a tear that was starting to form on her cheek, then as she hears Gelik's reply turns to look at the sprightly gnome. "I wonder WHO else that would have been."


"If it is any consolation," Ieana volunteered, " in spite of Sasha's shortcomings, she is quite the sneaky one when she wants to be. If nothing else, you could consider it a testament to how much she adores you both."


"Shortcomings, eh? You and your tales Professor," he said with a snort.

At the gnome's double-entendre about her tale/tail, the wizardess merely tipped her head graciously, amused rather than put-off.

Rolls:
Sense Motive Checks:
A 1d20 + 25 ⇒ (10) + 25 = 35
I 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (18) + 11 = 29
L 1d20 + 2 + 2 ⇒ (16) + 2 + 2 = 20


Lureene nods in agreement even as she snickers at the banter. "Yes, Ieana, she is quite sneaky. I know she meant well, but..." She gives a small sigh. "Sometimes she is SOOOO frustrating. Sill, I do love her very much."


Councilor of Dafar

The camaraderie and familiarity between the others and the Princess somewhat tenuous to her, the Councilor commented, "I must confess, your Highness, I was as caught off-guard as Lady Ourson. Your choice was a very..." The pale elf paused, considering her words, "unconventional method of determining seating arrangements. I had not realized Lady Ourson was not an intended participant."


Lureene Ourson wrote:
"I know she meant well, but... Sometimes she is SOOOO frustrating. Sill, I do love her very much."

Oh the irony...

Even as Alis successfully fought down a smile, nearby Isaac was turning red in the face as an inexplicable fit of coughing very nearly drowned out what the Councilor had said. With a sudden gasp, the Princess turned to him, seemingly concerned for his well-being, an intense look that Lureene could not see evident to the Marshal as she clapped him on the back to cover his loss of composure.

"Don't you die on me, Major!"

Rolls:
Bluff Checks
A 1d20 + 25 - 5 ⇒ (9) + 25 - 5 = 29 familiarity
I 1d20 + 8 + 5 ⇒ (1) + 8 + 5 = 14 AA from Alis

Sense Motive Checks:
L 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (9) + 2 = 11


Even as tears threatened to well up in his eyes, the taller man waved apologetically to ward off concern. "Noted, Princess. Must have... swallowed a fly."

Wheezing a bit for effect, he excused himself to go run for a glass of water.


Alis frowned inwardly as Isaac put some distance between himself and the others.

This has been a trying day for all of us...

Turning back to face Lureene again, she briefly glanced to Eladwen and said, "I wanted to make an uncomfortable situation so I could see who curried favor with whom. I wanted to see what alliances and rivalries were already in place, and to build some support without the status quo getting in the way."

She brushed Lureene's cheek with her hand. "I didn't mean to put you on the spot, El, but it would have looked arbitrary if I'd meddled with how Gelik called the names. I'm also sorry for asking you to walk Poe out like that, but I was seeing red and I was hasty."

"As for Sasha," she looked into the soft blue pools of Lureene's eyes, "I know how you feel, trust me..."


Lureene gazed into her friend's beautiful violet eyes. Whenever she felt unsure or scared, she knew Alis had the rare gift in quieting the doubts in her soul. "I understand 'Lis. It is what a good ruler should do." She gives her friend a big smile. "We are BOTH new at this, but we will get better, I know this for sure! As for Sash, I know she will forgive me. Also I know she is in good hands with...Arion right?"


Lureene's smile brought a pleasant warmth to Alis' face and she nodded knowingly. "New is... a good way of putting it. In all fairness, I was originally sent here to help Governor Taurion mediate a dispute, not take her place."


Councilor of Dafar

"New, Highness?" Eladwen prodded anxiously.


"Yeees, Councilor, new." The shorter Princess looked at the older elf and said, matter-of-factly, "Silverwake and her duchy may be expansive, but they are also civilized and peaceful. Still, if the King has faith enough in my training, I suppose I shouldn't question his wisdom, now should I?"

After a few moments of uncomfortable silence from the Councilor, she added, "We shall be joining Lady Lammontari for tea in the morning, Eladwen. In the meantime, I need to reflect on everything that was discussed this afternoon. We can begin planning further actions tomorrow."

Alis turned, posture perfect, chin up, and concluded, "Thank you for your assistance this evening, Councilor. Your time is your own until the morning."


Councilor of Dafar

Although there was some concern now etching Eladwen's timeless visage, she was seasoned enough at court to know when to keep her peace. "Of course, your Highness. I shall leave you to your thoughts then. Thank you."

With that, she bowed her head respectfully before retreating further within the expansive manse she called home.


With a sigh of relief, Alis reached behind her and caught Lureene's hand, tugging her into a soft embrace. "I'm sure Sash is fine. Arion is probably a lot more capable than you might expect."

She gave Lureene a light kiss on the cheek as she released her hug and took her by the hand. "Let's go check on her, hmm?"


Lureene takes Alis's hand with her other hand. "Thank you for sticking with me 'Lis." She releases the Princess' slender hand and squeezes it with other hand smiles brightly, "Let's see what trouble Sash got into!"


Upon the sturdy rooftop of the magnificent Villa, Arion had been taking in the exotic panorama across the horizon. The hazy hemisphere's hues were as a Draconostone from within the remains of a Silver Dragon; The deepest of cobalts and indigos blending gradually into deep magentas towards the sliver of remaining Sun dipping below the high treeline. He noted the contrasts where primeval jungles, now in sable shadows, met civilisation at the River's edge. That River curved like a sea of gold in that hour, on the far side of the sillouetted Palace, whose impressively massive stone works seemed to have been carven and erected by Giants.
As he heard Sasha's mention of her past upon rooftops, and her own family's Villa his thoughts drew back to her.

Her family's Villa eh? Could it be that she is more accustomed to courtly life also? That would explain a great many things. Oh Ilmarond, it is easier to forget You here. The refreshment of Your frosty nights, beneath the ancient pines, I miss less as the thoughts grow of exploring these extrinsic jungles and their urban counterparts - flavoured by the thought that perhaps I could call this place "home" for a change. For the first time in many years I have somewhere that might quell my longings for You, far Ilmarond.
And, now, there is beauty and opportunity beyond any I have experienced in my travels. Her hair well analogous to this equatorial gloaming.

He turned his head towards her again as he sighed. The intake of breath synchronised with her speaking to him. For a brief moment the vast collections of scents from around them were overpowered by the hints of liqueur upon her lips. Was it akin to the amaretto flavours from Malatesta? Though hers was not tinted with "bitterness."

He smiled and backed away a step to take her hand and kiss it. "A pleasure to make Your acquaintance Sasha Nevah. In Ilmarond long ago my mother had the foresight to name me Arion. In my travels I have retained the conceit of using the surname of our House: Hithraen. On a curious note related to which, while You slept I studied briefly also what is known of Your friend Lureene from a brief penned not long ago by my superiors. Seeing the affections between Yourself, Lady Ourson and Princess Kirmoon, I skimmed what I could find of their histories." He looked far off towards the areas of The Daemon-Shade and grew more grave, "Life for the offspring of such Outsiders....it cannot have been easy for Your...friend. Though it is beyond my Mandate - the liberty to offer my services with You to help her present complexities - it is my hope that in this new domain, together, our duties might in some ways eventually lead to helping her."

The sight of Sasha, hair slightly dancing in the evening breezes, brought up emotions Arion had not the luxury to enjoy for far too long and stanzas were expressed almost involuntarily:

"Red as Dragon-Fire, the glow, the setting Sun enflamed the water
The Dragon's Breath did lift us here, a rooftop trist with Nobles' daughter
The colours...scents...the cooling breeze, her ivory skin and flaming hair
I'll ever more remember how the Twilight made all dimly fair"


Ari...? Ari, Ari, Ari, Ari... Ok, it's Ari like... carry! Yeah, Ari like carry because he picked me up and carried me– OH!

The courtly kiss Arion delivered to Sasha's hand brought a blush to her cheeks, her knees growing a bit weak at a gesture she'd only seen performed towards proper noble ladies. From that point forward, although she only heard about half of what the scribe said, the redheaded huntress continued to smile, seemingly well-pleased by their conversation.

At mention of affections and reading about people's histories, her eyes grew wider.

Oh wow, I wonder how– OOH! I bet he found Alis' diary or something! Oh man, I bet there's some juicy stuff in that!

As Arion gazed away towards the north-west, his mind on a place several 1000 miles distant, she cocked her head, one hand raised against the glare of the sunset to see what he was looking at, yet seeing only flocks of birds wheeling above the farmland hugging Desolation Bay. It was perhaps just as well, for scatter-brained though she was, it gave Sasha pause to listen to the scribe all the more closely.

Offspring of outsiders? Well I guess having a demon for a mom counts... as being a stranger in a strange land– Wait, he wants to help her with a man-date?!

Before excitement could completely take hold of the ranger, she found him gazing at her and reciting poetry once again. As her breath quickened and she drew closer, thoughts given over to libido, she could faintly make out the sound of people in the room below her — Alis and Lureene calling out her name. Though she might not have cared if they watched, indeed imagining them doing so or joining in was titillating, talk of helping Lureene was still fresh in her mind, and she suddenly recalled from a week prior how upset Lureene had become with her.

Breathing heavily, she wrapped her arms around Arion's neck, allow herself only a few moments of pressing her body tight against him, before she finally said, "Aww that's really sweet, Ari, but I'm not a noble's daughter. Buuut... I know my Lady would be happy to have your man date."

Pulling herself away, she tugged his hand, face at once melancholy yet hopeful. "Come on, let's go see Ellie."

Man, and Ellie thinks she's the succubus... I hope he likes her too.

Even though, Sasha now said they should go, only a fool could have mistaken her desires and intentions. Arion knew full well, the only reason his courtier's garb remained as yet intact was due to chance timing, though there was perhaps something more... Was that Lady Ourson's perfume he had smelled in Sasha's hair a moment ago?

Rolls:
Bluff Checks
S 1d20 + 10 + 1 - 10 ⇒ (2) + 10 + 1 - 10 = 3 seductive, hard to believe

Sense Motive Checks:
R 1d20 + 14 ⇒ (12) + 14 = 26


With the lingering spice like cinnamon (matching what he had sensed earlier, when examining the aura and intentions of Lureene inside the Villa) blowing from Sasha's direction, now more faint, now more strongly, passion's energising dynamo was the final touch that pushed Arion over the edge to full arousal. He was pulled by that powerfully invisible line, parallel with the line of Sasha's extended arm.

After all, if avoiding indiscretion is the only barrier, I DO have spells that can give us covert opportunities

As he approached her, almost surrendered to the moment, several events and words from earlier combined together in his mind. He paused, remembering the intense training back in Silverwake, used to refine his role as an ideal agent of espionage for Ilmarond, afield. His failure during one particular test. The allurement and seeming innocence, seemingly sincere advances of another female...a female being used as an assassin within the circles of the court intrigues.

The descriptions earlier, from her own lips, of the markings characteristic of the Ruby Coil; her family; the offspring of the demon-kin; the other clues I cannot afford to ignore or treat lightly; yes, it IS one possible scenario. I do know that Princess Kirmoon has gifts with the Cards of Divination, possibly greater magic than my own, given her reknown thus far. More likely that she has examined this Ranger and the Lady Ourson already. Out of the question at this time that I should use spells or subterfuge of my own here and now. Yes, I will bide my time and explore just who or what these two women closest to the Princess truly are

Concealing his suspicions, Arion hinged his movements upon his hand clasping hers, bowing respectfully with a cordial smile, saying, "Your suggestion is wise. We should rejoin the others now."

Arion continued in her hand grasp yet at arms' length, following her lead.

Rolls:
Bluff 1d20 + 17 ⇒ (4) + 17 = 21


Wise!

Blithely ignorant of Arion's cautious distrust, Sasha smiled broadly and slipped free of his grasp, skipping carefree across the ceramic roof tiles. Laughing with excitement, she skated down their slick surface to the edge of the roofline stopping just short of falling off the portico's edge with well-practiced grace.

From within the study below, all the perplexed Princess and her companions could hear was a familiar voice from somewhere outside and above the south balcony call out, "Catch me if you caa-aan!"

Rolls:
Sense Motive Checks:
S 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (4) + 2 = 6

Acrobatics DC 19 (slide down roof at normal speed)
S 1d20 + 16 ⇒ (3) + 16 = 19


"Wonder what redheaded daredevil that could be," Alis murmured with a sideways glance to her winged friend.

Even as Alis arched an eyebrow to Lureene, the two hastening to balcony, the huntress pivoted on the ball one foot and pushed off over the edge, her legs suddenly dropping into view from behind the entablature beyond!

"Hello, Sash," she said unperturbed, equal parts amusement and resignation painting her features.


Dangling in mid-air, hands having caught the edge of the roof, Sasha glanced below her, to spot the base of a nearby pillar a few feet away before pumping her legs and swinging inwards into full view arms wrapped around the column she had just leapt onto.

At Alis' seeming unsurprised greeting, Sasha glanced to one side and said, "Hey guys, Ari and I were just watching the sunset on the bay. He's really neat, you'd like him Ellie!"

With that, she slid the rest of the way down before quickly scaling the mansonry wall from which jutted the balcony. Breathing deeply, but not nearly winded she asked, "So, did you get rid of all the rich folks then?"

Rolls:
Acrobatics Checks
S DC 22 1d20 + 16 ⇒ (14) + 16 = 30

S DC 10 1d20 + 16 + 4 - 10 - 5 ⇒ (11) + 16 + 4 - 10 - 5 = 16 jump, no running start, awkward

S Climb DC 25 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (15) + 11 = 26


Well, she certainly seems back to normal...

Lureene raises an eyebrow more because of Sasha's exclamation than her acrobatic display. She does give her friend a smile and pulls the redhead into a hug, whispering "I am sorry for doing that to you, Sash."

Releasing the redhead, she sensed the other woman was still aroused but she did not dwell on that for long. She then raises her gaze skyward looking for the elvish...scribe. "Yes, Sash we are alone now...well except for 'Lis here!"

As she waits for Arion to arrive, Sasha's words finally register in her mind. Is Sash trying to play matchmaker for me? I don't even KNOW him...although there is something...intriguing about him. Of course, I am not that familiar with elvish culture.


Ari? Hoo boy...

With a shrug of her narrow shoulders Alis simply shook her head and patted Lureene on the shoulder. "Glad to see you are feeling better," she said, not bothering to indicate who she might have meant by the word 'you'.

Content to see what Arion had to say for himself, she conjured some illumination with a snap of her fingers and had a seat on the same comfortable divan as before.


As Arion watched in mixed awe and shock he paused at the edge of the roof, looking FAR below at the exuberant acrobatic marvels of the white and scarlet blur,

...or...maybe I DON'T follow her lead

He could not help but laugh a little. His spell for flight was still active and he floated downwards on a gentle angle. The return of his spectacles to before his eyes accompanied Arion getting the better of his emotion-intoxicated overtures. He bowed respectfully to Alissariel and offered,

"I apologise, Princess Kirmoon, if there were any breaches in protocol, or if You had been seeking me this hour, I should have at least left note as to our intentions. I confess that in the flood of relief and happiness brought on by Your magnanimous context, the wine, Your adorable companions, I had let my passions have freer rein than probably acceptable in Your service. I regret the lapse of reason yet I do not regret being part of these experiences today, in Your presence also. Thank You and please excuse me. Your friends are quite remarkable."


"So outspoken for a scribe," Alis chided, smirking at Arion's overly verbose apology. "Well you did spirit away Lady Ourson's protector, perhaps I should place your fate in her hands."

She looked to her lady in waiting, mirth in her playful purple gaze, "Lureeeene?"


Lureene glances first at the Princess, then over to Sasha, and finally back to Alis. She cannot help but give a slight chuckle at the Princess' sense of humor as she turns to face the poor elvish scribe.

She briefly toyed with the idea of watching him squirm for a moment, but after looking into the young man's eyes seeing the reflection of her own eyes in his spectacles and in a fit of compassion, reconsidered her actions. She instead simply extended a slender hand for him to take.

"I believe a simple apology will suffice here, Arion."


Alis cleared her throat and stressed, "The operative word being 'simple', Mister Hithraen."

Blue-violet eyes sparkling, she sat back and watched their interplay, glad for a more lighthearted turn of events.


Did I mess something up for Ari already?

Beside Lureene, Sasha merely cocked her head and shrugged to Arion, one hand absentmindedly stroking the edge of Lureene's wing as she watched. While she wasn't quite sure what was going on, Alis' easy demeanor was at least enough to set her at ease.


Now THIS was the Courtly life he had missed! One corner of his smiling lips began to curve more highly. He did not bother to hide his blissfulness at the clever revelry. Clever women had always been far more captivating to him.

Well, that answers whether I should be suspicious of her companions or not...for the time being

Arion first bowed his head lightly towards the Princess, smiling broadly, his admiration risen even more highly, "Sage and merciful decree."

Seeing what seemed to be an unspoken reply that appeared to mean something along the lines of 'That's right!' and, catching the hints of mirth in his beautiful executive, Arion turned towards Lureene. He began to support her hand and noticed, with charmed fascination, how very different it seemed than any hand he'd ever seen or felt. It was almost as if a master artisan had sculpted her from the most alembicated materials. Yet far more enchanting than any construct, the ever so delicate movements of life within were poetry in motion. Her scent washed over him in full and he was mezmerized. Touching and being so near, cast a spell that had eluded him before, watching the disarray from a distance. He managed to command his body to inch forwards and kiss her hand lightly and the touch of her skin...

Breaking free from the geas enough to speak he smiled and said,
"Your informality honours me. I do apologise Lady Ourson."


Lureene watches every movement of the pale-haired scribe, an idle look of curiosity on her beauteous face. In truth, she was wondering about this rather handsome man...why had she not noticed him before...and the graceful movements of his lithe body.

As he approaches her to plant his lips on her hand, she felt Sasha reflexively tighten her grip on her wing. The movement reminded her of what Sasha had said earlier and now her gaze is now more...intense. When he touches her hand, she cannot help but feel a rush of sensation, one she had not felt in quite a long time and far away from here. The press of his lips on the inside of her wrist left a lingering aura of warmth coupled with a tingling sensation, a marvelous feeling on her skin. As he offers his verbal apology, she returns his smile with a radiant one of her own.

"I do accept your gracious apology, Master Arion. Your graciousness does me much honor and gratitude. I fear such was lacking among the meeting with the other nobles earlier." Arion recalls the treatment she was subjected to by the odious Lord Gallo.

She reaches to touch his cheeck as he rises to his feet. "Thank you once again for keeping Sash company. I do appreciate it."


If ever there was an 'Anti-Medusa,' Arion had been touched by the 'gaze' of one. Rather than lifeless stone paralysis, he meditated from a vigor of aesthetic wonder. With great effort of will he tried his best to avoid a perpetually awkward frozen stare of pleasure.

"Your own gratitude has assisted my desires to be more terse, for, so near to You, I became speechless...
...and now, in a more deific mood, I see that Port Eldarion's trinal tendency plays out HERE as well."

He looked around himself at the Ladies, his mind almost spinning faster than his turning viewpoint.

"Without blasphemy, here we have a trope of The Three Fates, in Your own unique ways."

In that same spirit, Arion knew that it was the place of his Princess to captain the course of the conversations now. He had already discerned that she was so highly perceptive, it was unnecessary for him to say many things openly. She would realise his intention to yield attentions. He softly nodded in sincere respect and took his position again at her side, journal at the ready.


Assist his desires? I knew he'd like Ellie! Hmm, I wonder which Fate I am...

Pleased as a predator that had laid a kill before its master, Sasha was still beaming a big smile, eyes fixed on Arion when she asked, "So, what's our man-date for tonight then?"


Now that Isaac had made his way out of the study where Alis and the others were discussing things, he was able to shake his head to clear it of the insanity that had just taken place. Looks were definitely deceiving with that group to say the least.

Pushing his loose blond hair out of his face, the Marshal walked out with his posture confidant, if not a little worn down with his head being down, trying to act as if nothing was bothering him. Though those who knew him better knew that something or someone had gotten under his skin and hurt his head with the way he was holding it.

Out of the corner of his eye, he noticed the harbormaster, talking with his corporal, Amoya. Oh god, he actually took me seriously? Well, she doesn't seem too terribly annoyed with him... he thought, which was a bit of a surprise to him. At least those were two people he wanted to talk too, one he needed to put on a mission, the other, he wanted to have a drink with now that there was no one around to impress anymore.


Amoya had mostly been waiting for the Marshal to emerge from his meeting with the princess, he seemed incredibly flustered when she had called him out in the middle of the luncheon. She wanted to double check to make sure he was alright when Jaro the Harbormaster had walked out and approached her. At least he had some tact about approaching her.

While he was a little rough around the edges, she didn't say much to him, mostly nodding her head, and smiling at him every now and then. When out of the corner of her hazel eyes, she caught sight of the Marshal and walked away from Jaro, heading towards the troubled looking Marshal.

"Sir, are you alright?" She asked once she was close enough to address him, not really caring too much if Jaro had followed her or not, using a very formal military tone with him.

When Isaac nodded his head towards her, her shoulders seemed to relax slightly.


"Yeah... yeah, I'm fine. I have a letter I need you to deliver to your sister for me, Echorn." He said, sounding very drained and pulled out the paper and placed it in her hand.

"Now, I'm going to go get myself a damned drink. You coming with me?" He asked the harbormaster as he came up from behind Amoya. Before he placed a hand on her shoulder and gave her the chief hand. "Don't ever, ever change, Echorn." He told her as if giving her and order that left her more than a bit confused. She was one of the few females that didn't make his head hurt, and today, he had enough of women who didn't have it all together.


Amoya took the piece of paper that the Marshal had given her and looked it over, "Yes Sir." she said, almost sounding as if she dreaded going to the part of the city where her sister had chosen to live at.

Though her thoughts were interrupted when the Marshal clasped her shoulder and chief handed her and gave her one of the strangest orders she had ever been given in her life. Quirking a dark eyebrow at him, "Um... I don't plan on changing sir?" she replied almost nervously, wondering what had happened to make Isaac so exasperated with life at the moment.

She assumed she had given him the right answer when he patted her shoulder and mutter a soft 'good' and looked towards Jaro.

Surely the Marshal's new companions can't be worse than Poe... can they?


Although leaving the Princess' party before the rest of the guests had allowed Amhranai to escape any awkward encounters with Carlina, and outpace any news of her knighting, it did mean she had a lengthy walk home ahead of her. Still, there were many concerns to occupy her mind during that: Shivone, Freebooters, the part Alis would have her play in aiding the Zucks, the fact that Karaka was waiting outside her home, wringing his hands...

Upon seeing his older, paler friend, the Dafari warrior shook his head anxiously, his gritted white teeth standing in stark contrast to his dark complexion. "You make many strange friends, woman. I think maybe you would have done better to blow yourself up. This 'friend' who calls on you now... she do the voodoo!"

With that, he gestured to the dark, looming door to the modest hovel Amhranai called home. There, standing in the doorway, a long, sleek black cat too big to be a house cat yet too small to be a panther strutted, beckoning the priestess enter with a crook of its tail.


Sasha Nevah wrote:
"So, what's our man-date for tonight then?"

Alis had been smiling subtly at the interplay between her new bodyguard and Lureene when a slight hesitation mid-word by Sasha gave her pause.

Man-date?

"Hmm, I wonder." There was a mischievous sparkle in the Princess' eyes as she gazed at the three. Yet before she could make further reply, the form of another woman appeared from the darkened room behind her.

Rolls:
Sense Motive Checks:
A 1d20 + 25 ⇒ (13) + 25 = 38


"Your pardon, Highness." It was a young elven maid-servant, the same height as Alis yet not nearly as striking. Plainly cut, straight white bangs protruded from her simple maid's bonnet, partially obscuring her dark eyebrows and grey eyes. Bowing, with one hand held to her chest, she said, "The fox lays in her den waiting to suckle her young, yet they are still at play."

Sense Motive DC 21 (Alis, Arion):
Innuendo: The Spymaster would like to meet and impart her wisdom to those who need it.

Rolls:
Bluff Checks
T (innuendo DC 20) 1d20 + 19 ⇒ (2) + 19 = 21

Sense Motive Checks:
A 1d20 + 25 ⇒ (3) + 25 = 28
R 1d20 + 14 ⇒ (9) + 14 = 23
L 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (8) + 2 = 10
S 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (1) + 2 = 3


Alis simply waved a hand in the air, seemingly unconcerned. "Foxes are nocturnal and young kits need to play as much as they need to dream. The new day will still dawn just the same."

Sense Motive DC 34 (Arion):
Innuendo: It seems Alis doesn't care to meet with Sindariel just yet and would prefer some time for reflection instead. Her decision to meet in the morning stands. (It's subtle, but you also get the feeling that Alis is just as much asserting herself rather than allowing one of her ministers to boss her around, implying that she's some young pup.)

Rolls:
Bluff Checks
A 1d20 + 25 ⇒ (9) + 25 = 34

Sense Motive Checks:
R 1d20 + 14 + 5 ⇒ (15) + 14 + 5 = 34 made previous check
L 1d20 + 2 + 5 ⇒ (2) + 2 + 5 = 9 familiarity
S 1d20 + 2 + 2 ⇒ (11) + 2 + 2 = 15 human


"Aww," Sasha's eyes lit up, her heart swelling with adoration, "are Jazzy's little kits being cute again?"


The Princess merely smiled and looked from Arion to Sasha, smiling gently. "As if they could stop being cute, Sash?"

Noting that beside her, the 'maid' was still awaiting further reply, she continued, "My present guests, the Lady Ourson, Ms. Nevah, are quite comfortable, Tiniel, but I believe they require a mandate for Mr. Hithraen. I think," she dipped her chin coyly, "I'm inclined to agree."

Arion OR Sense Motive DC 34 (—):
You suddenly realize that Alis is trying to get Tiniel to take it down a notch, that she is quite comfortable around Lureene and Sasha. Yet in the same breath, you also note that she just stressed the word 'mandate' in a fashion similar to how Sasha stuttered when saying the word a moment prior.

It is only then, that you realize the Princess knows full well it was no mistake on Sasha's part. Rather she picked up on the fact that what the redhead was truly desiring (perhaps as a misunderstanding of your own words) was a date with a man for herself and her winged-mistress... And the Princess was inclined to agree?!

Rolls:
Bluff Checks
A 1d20 + 25 ⇒ (9) + 25 = 34

Sense Motive Checks:
L 1d20 + 2 + 5 ⇒ (3) + 2 + 5 = 10 familiarity
S 1d20 + 2 + 2 ⇒ (13) + 2 + 2 = 17 human

T 1d20 + 19 ⇒ (16) + 19 = 35

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