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Joined: Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:41 am
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The night before there had been a light shower in the capital, the kind that had the most impact the next dawn. Where one waits expectantly for the sun's light to glisten off the the droplets of water that cling to every surface, despite the cold mist that yet lingers on the ground. At least this was the case for Camilla, who lingered in the castle gardens. Sword in hand, she kept swiping at drops of water as they slide off their resting place. She missed every time. The blame was Helena's of course. The longer the deposed Queen stayed in Alvoros, the more Camilla's skill waned.

Camilla exhaled a cold breath, and sheathed her blade. Patience was key at times like this, do what you can now so you have the strength to push yourself when it's needed. Yes patience was the-

It was then the lively band of muses and their Queen Bee Helena barged through the garden's doors. Once again they had been partying all night, and would likely continue to do so until noon. Only Giuseppina and her Queen noticed the departure of Camilla, and while Helena shrugged it off, Giuseppina stayed behind. She bid the party farewell- blaming her weak constitution- and took the time to ponder what the Seloisian Queen was doing alone in her gardens so early.

Then the sun rose. One Queen blissfully unaware of the light, one Queen unable to feel it's warmth.

_________________
When my eyes be rollin'
The haters get goin'
The seeds I'm sowin'
With a smile I'm flowin'
And if I be trollin'
Ya never be knowin'
'Cause when the haters get goin'
My eyes just start a-rollin'


Last edited by Deciton_Reven on Mon Nov 16, 2015 2:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Sat Nov 14, 2015 1:20 pm
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Augustos stood alone in his room, diligently ironing a spare handkerchief as the kettle began to whistle. His master would be expecting the morning tea in about a quarter of an hour, and what a foul mood he'd be in! Regulos was not entirely unappreciative of the muses' nightly revelries - nearly anyone could pick out and admire the melodic streams of beauty that would occasionally rise from the cacophony - but this most recent party had been particularly obnoxious, and Regulos' temper was likely in as sorry a state as his circadian rhythm. "Poor chap, " Augustos thought, referring at least partially to himself. "He probably didn't get a single wink last night."

The butler set away his ironing board and quickly prepared a tea tray. Regulos liked to pour the hot water himself and wouldn't accept any temperature other than boiling, so Augustos would have to hasten up the stairs if he didn't want to risk aggravating his master's mood. In a single swift motion, he folded the handkerchief into his pocket and was out the door.

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Sat Nov 14, 2015 6:35 pm
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A moderate amount of words, but enough to take up the entire screen so I have enclosed them in this box: show
“Thank you for this, Ignatia.” Floriana said, brushing a stray hair from her face. Before her stood the small stone building that would be her new home and laboratory. The structure appeared very poorly kept; grime covered nearly every surface, the wood framing the doors and windows appeared to be rotting, and ivy had begun to gradually slither up the base. A chimney poked up from the sloped roof, and several grates were placed along the walls for ventilation. It wasn’t much, but it was more than good enough for the alchemist’s purposes.

“Yeah, well,” Ignatia started, frowning. “It’s the last I can do after…” She went silent.

Floriana looked down at her feet. It had only been a fortnight since her previous residence had burned to the ground, and with it, countless ingredients, alchemical implements and research notes. She had managed to save a meager three pages from the blaze. It would take at least a year to make up for everything that had been lost. Fortunately, General Ignatia Varios had been there to help pick up the pieces.

With her military connections, Ignatia had managed to get Floriana this dwelling in the capital of Seloi. It would have been nearly impossible to find a more perfect arrangement. The city’s central position and the many roads leading to it would make it easy to obtain ingredients from all over the country, and beyond. Despite recent events, the alchemist found herself feeling hopeful. She turned to her friend and smiled.

“Hhhrph!” Ignatia’s response was as loud as it was abrupt. A quick expulsion of air, hastily cut off as she pressed her hands over her mouth. After a second, she lowered them, but now she was biting her lip. It was clear that she was making a very concentrated effort not to laugh. Floriana suddenly recalled that her smile looked rather ridiculous. She hadn’t had much practice, after all. Remembering this, she allowed her smile to widen and squinted her eyes.

“Luo’s sake, stop already.” Ignatia chuckled, covering Floriana’s face with her hand. When she pulled it away, her friend had regained her usual, bored-looking countenance. “Good. You go ahead and get settled in. I have some business to take care of at the castle. If you need me… Well, you won’t be able to get into the castle on your own, so just get arrested by the guards, I guess. I’ll come bail you out or something. Sound like a plan?”

“Technically, yes.” Floriana responded in monotone.

“There’s the Flor I know. You’ll have that laboratory up and running in no time. There’s nothing to worry about, trust me.”

“I know.”

“Uh, right. Great.” Ignatia scratched the back of her head, then turned to leave. “Well, I’ll see you later.”

“Bye.” The alchemist lifted a hand sluggishly into the air, bidding her friend farewell with quite possibly the laziest wave in the history of Illisia. With that, she turned and headed into her new home.

The building was as unassuming on the inside as it was on the outside, perhaps moreso. The only source of light was what came through the windows, illuminating the myriad of particles floating in the air. The perfectly average wooden floor was completely unadorned save for a slight coat of dust and a small hatch in the corner that presumably lead to a s****. Above was a simple loft. There was a paltry smattering of furnishings throughout the building’s single room; a long table, a bedroll, and a single stool. The walls were all practically identical, the only defining feature being a hearth on the wall opposite the door. Floriana walked over to the table and placed her surviving notes on it.

“Huh.” She mumbled after a few moments, unsure of what to do now that she had finished unpacking.

***

Ignatia’s expression turned sour as she made her way to the castle gates. She hated mornings like this. Cool mist blanketing the ground, a chill hanging in the humid air like an icy veil. Why did everything have to be so… damp? The woman summoned up her composure as she approached the portcullis. The guards standing at the still-open gate came to attention and saluted as they met her gaze. She saluted in turn before entering, heading straight for the garden with purpose in her step. Queen Camilla would likely be there at this hour, and Ignatia urgently needed to speak with her.

By the time the general arrived at the garden, the queen from Maris and her entourage were already there. With an almost inaudible groan, she shuffled toward the group, who had almost certainly chased the good Queen away. As Helena and her muses made off to who-knew-where, one of them stayed behind. That made things easier.

"Excuse me." Ignatia said, approaching the lone woman. After giving a slight bow, she continued. "Please pardon the interruption, ma'am. Have you seen Her Majesty Camilla this morning?"


Mon Nov 16, 2015 12:28 pm
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There was no procession. No fanfare. Such things were trivialities in the first place, but here, as two figures made their way through the foggy streets of Alvaros to the gate of Castle Selosa, their absence was a boon. From a distance, one might have assumed that the pair were father and son, perhaps a craftsmen and his trainee out for a walk before the day’s work began. Yet the task that loomed before these two was of a much grander nature than the simple hammering of silver and gold. Indeed, their purpose was to shape the fate of a kingdom - and by extension a continent - redirecting history to suit the interests of one family in particular. Masumi Saito was looking forward to it.

The young king’s spies had brought him news of trouble to the North some two weeks prior. Though the strange foe that had begun an assault at the tip of Ilisia was not yet a direct threat to Hakoto, Masumi was wise enough in the ways of war to know that the false peace that his people still enjoyed would not last. Once the North fell it would be too late, and the Hakotese were ill-prepared to defend themselves against an opponent as powerful as that which now threatened the known world. External aid was primordial if Tsukada was to be left standing when all was over. So it was that Masumi had elected to travel personally to Seloi, bastion of magical warfare. He would convince them of the necessity of war, and if all went according to plan, they would act themselves without any monetary investment whatsoever on the part of clan Saito.

---

Tsubasa Fukui had dispatched a trio of Saito agents upon entering the city, but with the exception of those three, he was alone as caretaker of his master. They had chosen such a strategy as a gesture of peace, first and foremost, but also because Masumi had insisted on not having anyone else around that might jeopardize the extremely sensitive nature of the negotiations that he was going to undertake. Fukui was among the few that the young Saito ruler trusted completely to execute plans as he was instructed, and the only one whose council he valued as equal to his own.

Though he attempted to hide it from his master - which was for the most part an exercise in futility - for once Tsubaki was truly worried about testing the extent of Masumi’s diplomatic and strategic abilities. He was unequalled in the playground that was Tsukada city, but royal courts were an altogether different battlefield - one that could be darker and dirtier than even the most foul alleys of their home.

---

The two arrived at the castle gates shortly after dawn. Masumi had chosen this eccentric hour of arrival purposely. If entry could be had, chances were that few would be around to prevent him from scoping out the palace layout before the day began. Even if he was stopped, it was probable that a curious visiting youth would receive nothing more than a mild scolding and an escort back to whatever accommodations their hosts would provide. Of course, this was all based on the assumption that they would get in. Certainly, Masumi had no intention of allowing himself to be stopped at the first obstacle, but as much as he hated to admit it, he was not quite in his element in this new environment. At least not yet.

As they approached the entrance, Tsubasa hailed the guards. “Greetings, noble servants of the Queen. I am Daisuke Matsuoka, a messenger sent with urgent tidings from Hakoto. I seek audience with the Queen, for these matters are of the greatest importance.” On the off chance that any in this land had heard of him, the fake name would dissolve any doubts as to his integrity. Masumi waited patiently by his side, playing the part of the young apprentice. His time would come.

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For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—
not by works, so that no one can boast. Ephesians 2:8-9


Thu Nov 19, 2015 12:33 am
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