collapse

* Welcome!

* Important Links

* BR Councils

* COTM and TOTM

* COTY and TOTY

Character of the Year


Thread of the Year

* Affliates

Affiliate with Us

Blood Rites RPG

Listed At

RPG-D Nerd Listings

Our Affiliates

   

* Credits

RSS Feed  Facebook  Tumblr    E-Mail

Canon: © Anne Bishop
Board's Plot: Blood Rites
Points Scheme: Mother Night
Ratio System: Blood Rites

Blood Rites best viewed in Firefox.
Established February 2010
by Jamie, Gina & Bowie.


* Welcome Guests

You are currently viewing our forum as a Guest. While you can see all we do, you can't participate. Please think about joining, we love new players. Click Here for more information.

* Plot Informaton for Scelt

Scelt is a Territory in turmoil and peace is tenuously held together by the Sceltic Queens. Rivalry between the Clans errupted into horror for the Territory that resulted in many dead, on both sides, and culimated in Clan Sheane being outlawed in the Territory. Further troubles plague the Territory in a variety of manners - Landen villages are raided, Courts are attacked, and no one seems to be safe.
History of Scelt
Provinces & Districts
Court of Scelt
Clan Culture
Scelt's Hourglass Coven

Author Topic: Enter, Stage Left  (Read 987 times)

Description: 190 / 191 Winter, during the Winsol season: Niall visits Epona at the Hammer and Anvil

Offline Epona Corcoran

  • Character Account
    • landen
    • female
    • Role

      Owner

    • Faction

      Hammer & Anvil

    • Territory

      Scelt

    • Character Sheet

      [Link]

    • OOC

      Idariel

    • Posts

      32

    • View Profile
Enter, Stage Left
« on: Nov 01, 16, 02:53:56 AM »
During the Winsol festivities, a month or so after the Falkirks arrive at Killan Keep, at the Hammer and Anvil Inn

Epona Corcoran walked slowly along the snow-and-ice covered river that bordered her lands. It was a long, winding creature, slow moving and mild, subject to the whims of the seasons. It froze every winter, flooded every spring and was absolutely glorious through summer and fall. This year, dark patches of black ice were frozen crystal-clear, sometimes revealing the shadows of giant fish slumbering in the depths. Her boots were fashionable and pretty, everything a successful owner of a dinner theatre should wear. But they weren't terribly practical, and the footing was tricky.

Especially with her sore ribs. Her arm had finally healed, and the extra income generated by the Falkirk's presence at the beginning of winter had allowed her to catch up on her protection payments. But the winter had been harsh, and cold. The Nobles had seemed frozen in their beds, these last two weeks.

Ever since the devastating betrayal of the High Queen by her own sister.

Dark magics were rumored to be involved, but whatever the truth of the situation Epona not had a profitable night at the theatre or the inn since. Sympathy, fear or political acumen; the motive didn't matter; very few people were in a mood for merrymaking, theatre or inns. The result was a devastating drop in income for everyone in the small town. And Epona had not been able to both meet the demands of the local Prince, and keep her theatre running. So his people had cracked a few ribs and broken most of her props. A 'grease fire' at the Inn had convinced Epona to sell off her back-office furniture in a frantic bid to make enough money for a daring, brilliant solution.

And so here Epona was, out on her river, inspecting the depth of the ice. Because one thing all Blood celebrated was their cursed Witch, at Winsol! So if the ice were only deep enough, Arthfael would use his Craft to level and clear a large enough section for an ice-skating party. Ice skating! She was counting on such an unusual and fun festivity to draw enough income to eek through the lean winter. And several ice flows here could easily be sculpted into truly amazing statuary. Her gaze fell with delight across the silvered, ice-coated trees, their trunks nearly black against the brilliant backdrop of snow. She spread her hands and turned, to drink in the view, freezing as she spied a figure walking towards her.

Not one speck of Epona's lovely hair was visible beneath the huge, purple scarf that muffled her head; a lovely purple velvet dress fell to her knees, met by her pretty, impractical, thigh-high boots. Purple, with black lace insets that let in ice, snow and wind. They'd been a prop, not meant to face the real world but appearances mattered. The inserts showed off her light pink tights, which was the purpose, after all. Right? She laughed; she had to. It was such an unlikely thing, her capering out here and turning a childhood vice into a brilliant masterstroke. And here came Niall, likely to even be able to name the scene and play her entire ensemble was from.

Offline Niall Burne

  • Character Account: Inactive
    • broken2te
    • warlord
    • ssdescent
    • Role

      Actor

    • Faction

      The Anvil

    • Territory

      Scelt

    • Character Sheet

      [Link]

    • OOC

      Caryn

    • Posts

      38

    • View Profile
Re: Enter, Stage Left
« Reply #1 on: Dec 30, 16, 04:20:28 PM »
If Niall had thought the Killan Court a difficult place to be in the first place, the effect was as nothing when compared to the atmosphere which had settled upon it in the wake of Brighe Devlin’s alleged betrayal. He could remove himself from the gloom by taking up every mission and task Aaron assigned him to learn the tricks of the trade, but those trips never kept him out long enough. Loreniel’s coterie of Dark-Jeweled males remained on edge at the threat to their Queen without a viable target to take out in retaliation. The Falkirks edged closer to their particular brand of crazy every day, but wouldn’t leave when their Queens were still learning from Killan. And rumors of Black Widow involvement flew persistently enough around the Keep that the Warlord thought they might actually have a bit of truth to them- and that scare him most of all.

For all that they’d gone about it horribly, the Sheanes hadn’t been wrong about the threat Black Widows could pose. The Falkirks might have hit upon a unique solution, but it didn’t change the fact that most people in Scelt couldn’t defend against such an attack. And when people got scared, they got stupid. Niall just hoped his Queen wouldn’t come to suffer for her loyalty to the Black Widow Queen- or to her father’s bonded Queen, for that matter (though it just figured only a Black Widow could keep up with the irascible old Laird).

Niall himself vacillated between being impressed someone had penetrated that far into Loreniel’s inner circle and faint disappointment that person hadn’t succeeded. It was awful of him, he knew, and the part of him which belonged to Yseult hurt for her sake that death had flown so near a kinsman. But with the ghosts of his own kin strewn in his past, the Warlord just couldn’t find it in himself to actively regret her possible death. Between the general agitation in the Keep, his own guilt at not feeling guilty, and Laird Ian’s rising irritation at him, Niall had decided it would be best to remove himself from the Keep for a while. And where else would he take himself but to the Hammer and Anvil.

From the outside, the old place looked much the same as it ever did. But inside… something was off. Old friends still bustled about, called out greetings and offered hugs. But a few people who’d at least offered a friendly hello as they passed now paused to regard him with suspicion (even hostility?). He couldn’t tell if they were offended to discover he had  a Jewel, or annoyed about his defection from the troup, or if they were simply having a bad day. That was the trouble with psychic scents- you might be able to get a read on what someone was feeling, but not why they felt it. And not everyone even had one in a Landen-owned theatre such as this one.

Arthfael met and directed him outside quickly enough, but before he’d noted the sparsity of furniture where it used to crowd the back offices. Hastily-repaired fire damage was visible to his Craft when careful fingers of Tiger Eye probed light at it. An accident, Arthfael claimed in his usual charmingly brisk way, a grease fire. Perhaps so, but it didn’t quite fit with the psychic impressions left in the wood. Panic, guilt, a disturbing note of glee and cruelty? The Warlord didn’t get long to dwell on that one confused flash of impressions and made a mental note to stay alert for more clues. Secrets didn’t stay secret for long in the theatre, some just took longer than others to reveal themselves. And if there was something unsavory going on at the Hammer and Anvil, Niall would be uniquely motivated to uncover it.

The sight of Epona, all bundled up and adorable in her pink and purple, drove such worries from his head in favor of a soft, goofy smile. His new Highlander family would be sneering gruffly about cursed impractical footwear out on tricky footing and females liable to break their fool necks (and that fact that a part of Niall was nodding along with them scared him- it truly did), but most of him was too busy enjoying the sight of her at all to quibble about her choice of winter gear. Niall himself had neglected a coat entirely in favor of the sort of peasant shirt and trousers that the men of the theatre favored when set to enjoy an afternoon trapped indoors (thank Mother Night for warming spells! Power bolts could go kiss his ass- that was surely the most precious gift She had ever given a Scelt).

Niall saw the precise moment Epona spotted him coming and couldn’t resist the impulse to grin broadly before launching into song.  “Girls in purple dresses with neat velvet sashes, Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes, Silver white winters that melt into springs, These are a few of my favorite things.” The bastardized lyrics from one of their more popular musicals hung on the breeze of the peaceful winter’s day, long enough for the Warlord to join Epona out on the ice. “Miss me? Or are you already out looking for places to dump the body?” He did wonder what she was doing out on the ice in those boots, but trusted that Epona had a reason. She usually did. The threatre owner had all the cares and backup plans that her actors usually eschewed in favor of ‘improvise and hope it works’. Niall longed to lift some of those burdens from her, but unfortunately Landen worked from a different set of rules than the Blood. What would be tolerated from a Blood female (albeit with an eye-roll for unwarranted fussing) might annoy a Landen one into breaking off their association- and Niall was too scared of that possibility to risk it without great need.

The Warlord opened his arms for a hug, fully intended to steal another kiss or three if she’d let him get away with it. Greedy eyes drank in the Landen woman, half with the intensity of a sight long-missed, and half with the carefully assessing gaze of a blood male for a female under his protection if Epona knew enough to pick up on the difference.

Offline Epona Corcoran

  • Character Account
    • landen
    • female
    • Role

      Owner

    • Faction

      Hammer & Anvil

    • Territory

      Scelt

    • Character Sheet

      [Link]

    • OOC

      Idariel

    • Posts

      32

    • View Profile
Re: Enter, Stage Left
« Reply #2 on: Feb 28, 17, 07:08:54 PM »
190/191 During the Winsol festivities at the Hammer and Anvil Inn
(Playing at the Theatre in 191: the Phantom of the Opera, debuting Brandywine and the Merchant of Venice, featuring Arthfael as the Duke (and extra acrobatics).

Epona Corcoran's eyes sparkled in delight as Niall Burne burst into song. He treated her to a beautifully unique rendition of an old classic. His voice filled the winter day, despite the muffling snow, for his skill at projection was such that he did not require the careful acoustics of a theatre to be heard. His familiar, loose shirt and comfortable trousers suggested he'd come out into the snow to find her in rather a hurry, and that sent its own brush of warmth through her. But not quite so much as his open, welcome invitation to a hug. She'd missed him, and her gaze drank him in. She studied everything from the confident way he moved to the languid grace which marked his health and well-being, with nearly as much concern as Niall regarded her.

An actor learned to read body language. Any who had studied at Epona's Theatre leaned a thing or two about acrobatics, stage fighting and dance. Which understanding body mechanics, and balance. It meant that Niall likely would note the way her stance was not square, but with the right foot cocked, despite the uncertain footing. It allowed Epona favored her right side, without being obvious about it. If he had been working on Aaron's training to note subtle details, he'd find that her scarf was pinned too low, and not properly placed for maximum effect, suggesting her range of motion was impaired. And that the cause of that pain was something she'd been unwilling to admit to any of her friends, actors and staff.

Especially Arthfeal.

"I have missed you." She answer him with a breathless laugh. "I had no idea that you were a song smith, in addition to your other talents." She sighed rather wistfully. "You'd have made such a fine Phantom. But Arthfael is rather enjoying the dramatics." A spray of color, deeper and wider than the cold could account for, painted her cheeks. And her neck, and her ears. She was suddenly unsure of the right words, to let him know she'd missed him personally. "I missed you." she repeated. "I mean ... me. Not just the Theatre."

Niall might notice that her right hand and arm, while encircling him as willingly as the left, moved more gingerly. Her make-up was subtle and elegant, but as she closed with him, he might see it a bit thicker than normal, the coverup going deep onto the back of her neck. The Landen held no psychic scent. His keener, predatory senses though would discover a few secrets from her physical scent. The heavier tang of medicines one took or rubbed upon the body ...say... after a brawl were almost successfully disguised as a cinnamon and clove hand cream, and her pleasant tang of healthy, clean woman was lightly overlaid with the merest hint of fresh baked rolls and butter.

Epona deftly went on point, her wrapped toes handling the boots unusual pressure from the boots (as opposed to toe shoes) with ease. She gifted Niall with a delicate, chilled brush of lips across his cheek, before her cold nose burrowed into the crook of his shoulder. She cuddled close, to reassure him. His sharp look had not gone by unnoticed; she had several Jewelless Blood who worried about her, but none quite so sharply as Artfhael. Yet Niall's look had held elements that rendered it profoundly different from Arthfael's. She did not properly understand the intensity with which the Blood males who worked at the theatre regarded her. She merely understood that in each of those who had come to terms with her Landen status and her position as the owner, she'd gained a rather severe brother.

Niall, though, was different. He'd always been so gentle, and so hurt. To see him smile, and laugh was a deep joy even if it hadn't affected her so personally. Yet he'd changed, somehow, when he'd found his Queen. Come out from hiding, yes; but also something had been set right within him. He'd come alive, and that burning intensity echoed in everything he did, even the protective way he'd looked at her.

He was so warm, and he warmed her heart, too. She squeezed him tightly, amazed that he permitted it. She looked up at him with sparkles of mischief and joy dancing over the greater tenderness he evoked. If he didn't kiss her properly then, as soon as enough of his warmth had spread through her that she didn't fear her nose and lips would deter him, she would dare to brush his lips with her own in a shy, tender caress.

Epona most assuredly wouldn't object if that kiss was drawn out for a while.

Sometime later, she'd nestle her head once more upon his shoulder, and gesture to the beautiful ice flows and the frozen lake beneath their feet. "Welcome home. You look amazing. Your Queen has been kind to you? I've worried, especially since ... that Incident."

Ok so ... she wasn't so good at romance.

And the Blood unnerved her.

But she could not see Niall as a member of that violent and blood thirsty race. He was theatre, he was here, and that was all that mattered.

Offline Niall Burne

  • Character Account: Inactive
    • broken2te
    • warlord
    • ssdescent
    • Role

      Actor

    • Faction

      The Anvil

    • Territory

      Scelt

    • Character Sheet

      [Link]

    • OOC

      Caryn

    • Posts

      38

    • View Profile
Re: Enter, Stage Left
« Reply #3 on: Apr 29, 17, 05:38:47 PM »
<<"I have missed you." She answer him with a breathless laugh. "I had no idea that you were a song smith, in addition to your other talents." She sighed rather wistfully. "You'd have made such a fine Phantom. But Arthfael is rather enjoying the dramatics." A spray of color, deeper and wider than the cold could account for, painted her cheeks. And her neck, and her ears. She was suddenly unsure of the right words, to let him know she'd missed him personally. "I missed you." she repeated. "I mean ... me. Not just the Theatre.">>

Epona was not right. Didn’t move right, didn’t smell right, was hiding things from him. It was subtle, but the cumulative effect raised alarms in the being geared toward guarding and protection. Combined with the earlier suspicious behavior, it raised it hackles and made something in the already-unsettled Warlord snarl for blood. Niall forced himself to still and think before she picked up on the impulse, busy mind sorting through plans and possible responses.

He was just starting to trust that (despite its Laird hating him like the rest of Scelt did Black Widows) his new Clan would be there for him. If he suggested something untoward was happening at the establishment of one Niall cared for and which they'd decided they held a responsibility to, they would be there to rip heads off and take names until they’d found and resolved the source of the issue.

And Epona would never forgive him for it.

His heart hurt at the thought. Not enough to make him permanently shelve the notion if things came to that, but enough to hold off on summoning the full might of Clan Falkirk for now. Watch, his training from Aaron whispered. Gather information. Epona was not a particularly subtle woman, and unused to the sort of deception and intrigue as the Blood lived and breathed it. She would slip up eventually and give him the key he needed. In the meantime, he could be patient until he knew more.

“I’ve missed you too.” Her distinction was adorable, touching, and so very Epona he found himself charmed all over again by his favorite Landen female. “I’m glad Arthfael’s having fun. It’s a pity, though.” He continued teasingly, which a bit of the mischief Niall had just been becoming known for when he’d left the Theater, “I might have enjoyed the chance to kidnap a beautiful woman and ask her to run away with me, if the right Christine had come along.”

<<"Welcome home. You look amazing. Your Queen has been kind to you? I've worried, especially since ... that Incident.">>

“She is.” Niall assured her. “Kind as summer, and running herself ragged trying to take care of us all.” As opposed to the strange Queen Ian answered to. He had faith his fellow former Sheane would kill anything that threatened her flock, but she hadn’t Yseult’s inclination to cuddle the lambs within it. “It’s just a… very stressful situation.” His arms tightened slightly around her- though mindful of the injury his practiced eyes had made note of earlier. “There’s no target to strike back at, which is riling a lot of the males. And I can’t quite bring myself to feel sorry for the victim… which the other Falkirks wouldn’t understand.” He confessed softly. Possibly she wouldn’t either. But he wouldn’t hide any part of him that mattered from her (Aaron’s sort of lesson and his new role with the Falkirks didn’t quite count, he reasoned). He wondered what exactly those outside the Keep had heard and made of it. Especially the Landen. For them, it would likely be enough to hear the Killan Queen had been attacked. For all the enemies she made of others, her own seemed dead set on defending her.

“Something is wrong.” Niall breathed into her hair, very calmly. Too calmly. “You don’t need to tell me if you don’t want to, but I hope you will. Let me help you.” That would do more for his agitated soul than just about anything else, really. Especially since he didn’t dare draw upon Yseult too much right now, when others needed her more. That wasn’t his role in her life and her Clan.

“You know what,” He continued in a lighter tone, as though his previous comment hadn’t happened, “If you can be persuaded to share your pond, perhaps I can lure some of them back her for a little winter celebration. A good show, a bit of skating, some good food- it would surely raise spirits sorely in need. What do you think?” The Theatre could always use the money, unless their fortunes had changed drastically since he’d last been around, and the more they were around, the more opportunity Niall had to go hunting.

May the staff of the Hammer and Anvil forgive him. If the Falkirks brought those dogs again, Niall would be celebrating Winsol by starring in his own one man show: a re-enactment of Witch’s Purge upon the Blood who’d wronged her.

Offline Epona Corcoran

  • Character Account
    • landen
    • female
    • Role

      Owner

    • Faction

      Hammer & Anvil

    • Territory

      Scelt

    • Character Sheet

      [Link]

    • OOC

      Idariel

    • Posts

      32

    • View Profile
Re: Enter, Stage Left
« Reply #4 on: Jun 05, 17, 12:59:04 PM »
190/191 During the Winsol festivities at the Hammer and Anvil Inn
Playing at the Theatre in 191: the Phantom of the Opera, debuting Brandywine and the Merchant of Venice, featuring Arthfael as the Duke (and extra acrobatics).

Epona Corcoran was not Blood, but a Landen. While she had been granted the title Lady since she was awarded the Theatre and its grounds, it was still very alien to her; she was no Aristo, but a peasant by birth. The great gulf between herself and Niall seemed to yawn between them. To her, life was precious, adults solved problems with words, and violence was a crime. It was morally wrong to hurt another person just to get what you want.

Yet for Niall, it was different. If he and his had the strength to survive the Price called, he could do anything. Like a god amongst mortals, the Jeweled Blood were held to be above any moral concerns. As if every act they took was moral simply because they desired to perform it. For two short years, Niall had seen what it was like to live differently. He had not once, to her knowledge, killed a single person in the time he'd been with her. He'd brawled a few times, but no permanent damage to another person had been done. And she meant to keep it that way, for Niall to never need to resort to violence on her behalf.

Sadness flooded her; an awareness that there was a reason for every dark tale about the Blood. A sudden, intuitive understanding that the same bad end which came to every Landen enthralled by a Blood in the fairy tales she adored was awaiting her. Yet Epona could not turn away; would not withdraw her protection, loyalty and affection from one whom she had taken in.

And come to care for, so very deeply.

Epona dared to capture Niall's face in her hands, though her touch was delicate and unsure, like a brush of butterfly wings. "It is madness, to expect you to sorrow or regret a stranger striking at the Killan Queen. If some will other than your own delivers you vengeance, then you are free of the ghosts of the past, without sacrificing your future." A brilliant smile, full of sorrow, curved her lips. "I would hate the war her death would bring. Can you imagine how many would die? She has no heir of the body. Every single Clan would march an army to the Keep, to challenge the Devlin Warlord Prince for the throne."

Gently, Epona released Niall, and took a step back to gesture around her. "Would they come? What do you think of a glorious Winsol Festival here? I thought Ice skating, dancing ... an interactive murder mystery with a romance at the end?" She did not have the resources for a new play, but this would take far less in the way of material needs. A few slight-of-hand tricks, clues for the guests to find, and they could adapt the actual story line to the crowd each night.

Let me help you. his soft, whispered request kept the butterflies dancing in her middle and tingles of antipcation flowing down her spine, along her skin, heating her cheeks.

Loyalty mattered, and Niall was loyal. Would it be betraying him to invite him into her private difficulties, or not to? Epona scuffed the ground with her boot, her focus on the tip of her toe, as if a thousand angels really balanced there. A sweeping look over her tiny domain, seeking out each brilliant swath of sunlight which might hold a Unicorn, or rolling ground fog concealing Acereans, before finally, reluctantly, meeting Niall's gaze. Uncertainty lurked within her, and an undeniable tension in her shoulders, jaw, stomach. She extended a hand to him. "I'm afraid, Niall. If I give you specifics, this becomes a huge battle, Jeweled Blood to Jeweled Blood. I could loose my theatre. We just ... need more income. That's what would be the most helpful. One of my protection payments went up, when I didn't expect it."

Surely, he'd leave it there.



Offline Niall Burne

  • Character Account: Inactive
    • broken2te
    • warlord
    • ssdescent
    • Role

      Actor

    • Faction

      The Anvil

    • Territory

      Scelt

    • Character Sheet

      [Link]

    • OOC

      Caryn

    • Posts

      38

    • View Profile
Re: Enter, Stage Left
« Reply #5 on: Oct 01, 17, 12:24:07 PM »
Niall didn’t want to talk about the Killan Queen anymore. He seized eagerly on the subject change and nodded. “The Clan is always up for a good party. And could probably use the distraction.” He was sure enough of his new Clan that he could count on them to attend for his own sake, too support a friend of the Clan, if not the festivities themselves. Especially once Yseult got wind of it.

He wasn’t entirely done with the previous subject, however.  “Help can come in many forms, love. Not all of them need be violent ones.” He assured her, brown eyes warm as they stared down into hers. What she needed to know, and what he’d forgotten for a long while during his time with the theater, was that the Blood were capable of good things too. Niall deftly captured her right hand –the arm he’d noticed her favoring- and raised it to his lips to kiss it gently and letting his Craft sweep through her body to dull some of the pain it found and bolster her body’s ability to heal itself just a little. The Tiger-Eye warlord was no healer, but he’d picked up traces of the Craft in his time as Escort to one- enough for this at least. Thank Mother Night that Landen bodies weren’t as resistant to Craft as their minds.

“I promise you, this will not become a huge battle.” That would only happen if he alerted the Clan to a threat to one under their protection, and Niall had no intention of doing so. The Falkirks were great if one had an open battle to fight, but against the sort of coward who lurked in the shadows and bullied Landens, they would only cause the sort of situation that so worried Epona. She didn’t need that burden added to her lovely shoulders, nor did the Clan need possible censure from the Killan Queen for starting a war in her backyard. “I would not risk your livelihood- it’s too dear to me for that. As are you.”

No, this was a fight of cunning and subtlety. Perfect for a warlord who couldn’t hope to match power with power, but who had an abundance of smarts and patience. It would require the sort of delicate touch Aaron Falkirk had steadily worked to teach him before bonding to Lady Honora. Besides, Niall had no intention of letting anyone else get the killing blow on whoever had laid a hand on Epona. That pleasure was reserved for him alone. “I just want you to know I’m here if you need me. Any time. Even if it’s just to talk. I worry about you, you know, even with the others around.”

Offline Epona Corcoran

  • Character Account
    • landen
    • female
    • Role

      Owner

    • Faction

      Hammer & Anvil

    • Territory

      Scelt

    • Character Sheet

      [Link]

    • OOC

      Idariel

    • Posts

      32

    • View Profile
Re: Enter, Stage Left
« Reply #6 on: Nov 01, 18, 02:15:01 AM »
Epona laughed, ethereal and glorious, her heart eased. Niall’s delight in the winter party thrilled her; he was too cany an actor to encourage it merely becuase it was her suggestion. If he thought the Highlanders would enjoy a bit of merry making tht was less stressful and restrained than the formal affairs of the Killan Keep, he’d be right. They might well coax many a visitor to their unorthodox activity. And she knew, without a doubt that if he thought the ice wouldn’t hold, why then, he’d magic up a frozen night and fix it.

Just like that.

She was going to express all of that to her Prince, when he took her injured hand and a warm summer breeze caressed her body. It was like butterflies, dancing along her skin. She’d never actually had any magic at all touch her; the closest was dealing with that horrible dog, Bear.  But this... the ache in her arm soothed to nearly nothing. The bruise on her back abruptly stoped complaining, and she felt her kneecap stop complaining about the balancing on the ice in heals. It was so beautiful and sweet, that she raised his hand to her lips and kissed it gently.

“Thank you.”

He spoke then, seriously, on how he could help her. So many ways, from helping her vet plays from a political stand point to telling her when to schedule performances. She spoke hesitantly, but replied quietly, “We need more ushers.” it was true, but it was also code, and one Niall was fully equipped to understand. Her Ushers were Arfthfael’s people, and they were security, handymen and chorus members, all three. Occasionally they were tapped for more demanding roles, but for the most part, they were simply Blood males eager to help protect loved ones associated with the Theare. But they were no longer enough.

“You know what sort of people we need, here. If you could just keep your eye open for the sort of folks who would fit in and who can handle themselves if things get scary, I would appreciate it.”

A heart beat later, “Also, do you know anything about Contacts? They broke theirs, and now tell me it’s not binding.”

(End)

 

 

anything