Out with the Old

A busy strip along the center of marn, including the Temple, Hospital, and Justice Hall.
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Ivone
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Re: Out with the Old

Post by Ivone » Sun Apr 10, 2016 1:42 am

Aurelio just shrugged nonchalantly. He had a habit of thinking he belonged where ever he was at the time. He plucked something nonexistent off his sleeve and let it fall to the floor. His gaze narrowed at Tius' obvious slur, face a carefully laid disdainful mask. His mouth curved in a very inappropriate and knowing smile.

"Yes, she is indeed passionate."

Ivone ignored the comment and instead gave her whole attention to Tius and his compliment, carefully smiling and looking coyly at Tius, behaving as if Aurelio did not exist - something his ego did not bear well.

"Behave, you. You will give everyone ideas." This was said even as she leaned a little closer herself, body language obviously making the words lies.

He was beautiful, but ugly, too. She just had to remind herself of that ugliness so she didn't walk right back into his traps. There, beside her were two reasons why she was glad to be leaving Marn.

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Vicentius
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Re: Out with the Old

Post by Vicentius » Sun Apr 10, 2016 10:36 pm

He chuckled at Ivone's response, shaking his head ruefully. The shrug was a curious affectation, but it was so very typical of Aurelio to resort to it. So many of the rakish castes felt that it gave them an air of superiority and nonchalance, when in truth it was a childish attempt to irritate the other party when one had little to really say. But, if it had not been effective, it would have died out ages ago. So, of course, he ignored it and focused on Ivone, idly wondering if Aurelio's ceaseless attempts to unnerve Ivone were making Sparrow jealous.

"Now where would be the fun in that, Miss Malatrast?"

He looked up, as though only having heard Aurelio's response, and smiled at Sparrow.

"But I suppose you're right," he said. "We can hardly outshine the newly engaged, can we?"

Around them, the ball continued, but it had not escaped the notice of some that the newly engaged couple had elected to speak to them, rather than mingle with those who considered themselves true luminaries. This, of course, lead to questioning glances, and muttered questions directed their way. In truth, Tius himself was wondering what they hoped to gain beyond increasing Ivone's social capital further, but he had the luxury of time to find out.

"Speaking of which," he said, deciding to throw Sparrow a bone, "why the change of heart, Miss Moryldar?"

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Re: Out with the Old

Post by Ivone » Mon Apr 11, 2016 3:14 am

"Change of heart?" Sparrow's dark brown eyes widened and she looked surprised.

"Aurelio and I have been engaged since birth. Any dalliances otherwise were purely for entertainment. I'd say the same is true of Aurelio." Sparrow turned to Aurelio.

"Darling, I think I see Giles over there. We should make sure to say hello." Aurelio inclined his head, arm extended for Sparrow. Sparrow turned back to Tius.

"Please excuse us." She waited only long enough for exiting pleasantries, uninterested in continuing the conversation further.

Ivone, nonplussed, lifted another bite of food.

"Would you care for something else?" Her smile was pleasant. Her gaze gimlet.

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Re: Out with the Old

Post by Vicentius » Mon Apr 11, 2016 12:49 pm

Of course, Tius thought, letting them go, it was the same, old, sunny tale; engaged from birth, true love if ever there was one. Division? Animosity? Whatever do you mean? Never mind that everyone had seen it and that everyone was aware of the lie, but as long as the words were spoken pleasantly it was all just brushed aside. He felt a smile creep onto his face. That was, of course, unless certain parties had come across letters from a certain newlywed detailing their disdain for another party and outlining why a change of alliance would be so beneficial. Not that anyone respectable would make such a thing public, but it never hurt to have insurance, did it? He looked to Ivone, raising an eyebrow.

"A bath, I think," he said, "or failing that, perhaps a drink to wash their taste from my mouth."

So saying, he lifted his cup, scooching closer to Ivone and raising it in salute to Aurelio before taking a sip. It didn't wash the sour taste away, but it was the thought that counted, and he turned his attention to the tray of canapés Ivone had procured to occupy himself. It never ceased to amaze him how the chefs of Marn could take simple, wholesome ingredients and render them unrecognizable for the party crowd. Still, while Ivone's manner was sanguine, he was not insensitive to the effect that Aurelio's prodding would have on her, and he gave her hand a squeeze, glancing towards the dance floor.

"Perhaps another nibble or two," he said, "and if my lady permits, another dance?"

He left the question in his eyes though; if she had other ideas, or if it was all too much, he was more than happy to leave. He'd fulfilled his objective for the night.

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Re: Out with the Old

Post by Ivone » Tue Apr 12, 2016 1:02 am

Her mouth turned in an amused twist as she kept her thoughts to herself. A more flirtatious woman would have offered to help him with his bath. Ivone returned the squeeze of his hand. She smiled, for him, and nodded.

“Another dance is a good idea. If we left right now, they would think they won.” Ivone peered at the options and selected a piece of fruit. It was the most discernable thing on the plate. Plus, it coupled well with the wine.

She glanced side to side, then leaned closer. Another conspiratory gesture.

“Though, we may want to forego eating further. I have no idea what half of these things are.” With that, she drained the glass of wine and slid back her chair. She curtsied, then stepped between his knees to whisper in his ear.

“Let them talk! If I might have this dance, darling Butterfly? We can show them how well we did at The Salon.”

Her hand drew down his sleeve and brushed the top of his hand as she stepped back. She held it out to him, for him to take.
Last edited by Ivone on Wed Apr 13, 2016 1:48 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Vicentius
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Re: Out with the Old

Post by Vicentius » Tue Apr 12, 2016 9:47 pm

He noted her expression, caught the inward tilt of her gaze, and didn't doubt for a moment that whatever she was thinking was far from proper. It was one of the reasons that he so enjoyed her company, though he did regret that she did not voice that thought. He glanced down at the plate, leaning in to meet her conspiratorial motions even as he kept a watch on the vultures. No, he supposed, they did not want them to win, but the fact they cared at all meant they had already scored a hit. He raised an eyebrow.

"Nor I, my lady," he said, picking up a pastry, "but what is life without a little risk?"

Chewing and swallowing quickly, he breathed an inner sigh of relief, even as he met Ivone's mischievous grin with one of his own. Draining his cup, he fastened his coat and took her hand, standing gracefully and with as much sweep as he could manage without throwing her off balance. He was aware of Raemes watching him, and his eyes sparkled slightly. Like they had at the Salon? There was a thought, but would that do here?

"Now, how could I refuse an offer like that?"

He paused a moment, listening to the band, and turned to look Ivone fully in the eye.

"Although, my dear Bloom," he said, "I must insist we strive to be better. This is to be our night now, so let us give them a show."

So saying, he lead the way to the dance floor.

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Re: Out with the Old

Post by Ivone » Wed Apr 13, 2016 1:46 am

Ivone stood, hand extended, waiting.

"I hope the answer is "never." She smiled at him again. To onlookers, it probably looked like a doting smile, but they couldn't see her eyes, could they? Her eyes said different things. When Tius turned his gaze to hers, she felt a jolt run right through her.

"My pleasure." When had his calling her "Bloom" become so ... charming?

Many couples took to the dance floor, but they did not exist. They were nothing, papier-mâché back drops, settings, nothing more. Simply put, Tius was an excellent dancer and graceful. He knew the power of his own body, his looks, and his place, though he pretended to be more humble than he was.

Drawing on every ounce of her training, her experience, Ivone gave herself completely to Tius and followed his lead with a fluidity that belied the number of times they'd actually danced together. The surrender to his lead and trust in it meant they moved as one, whether the tempo was fast or slow.

Dancing like this, turning, stepping fueled the fire that jolt had started, created joy where there had been none. Ivone could feel the strength of his arm beneath her left hand. She could feel his hand placed properly on the small of her back, felt it slide around to her side as he turned her in place. She liked the way his hands was so much bigger than hers. She felt dainty and fragile and strong all at the same time. She liked the blue of his eyes and that way he would look down and back up. She liked the way he bit his lip that made her wonder if he knew just how alluring it could be.

And, that was the other thing the newspaper writer had seen a glimpse of - here, Ivone shone, vivid and lively, because of that trust and surrender. She kept her eyes on Tius and that she smiled, the longer they danced.

"I hope the song never ends." An echo of their night at The Salon.

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Re: Out with the Old

Post by Vicentius » Thu Apr 14, 2016 10:53 pm

There was a fire in her eyes as they took position among the other dancers, a fire that seemed to permeate every part of her, so that she almost burned to the touch. He had seen that look before, and felt that fire, but never so intensely from her. She truly was a marvel, and now more than ever, he was certain that there was an ocean of passion hiding beneath her immaculately tailored exterior. She showed it in glimpses, in flashes, and quiet glances, but it was there, threatening to pull him under. He hoped she found as much in him to interest her as he did in her, but right at that moment, he was determined not to disappoint.

She'd remarked on his awareness of his status before, and it was true, he was aware of it. Years and years of lessons and pointed speeches had drilled into him what his status was meant to be, and he would be lying if he said that he did not use it to his advantage now and again. But people expected things of the upper crust, he'd found, and what mattered was not that he had status, but that he used it for all the right things. What that was depended on who he was talking to, of course, but the principle was the same. There and then, it meant giving Ivone the dance she deserved, and the crowd simply parted as they moved, because it could not turn out any other way.

The music swelled and dipped, and he kept his eyes on hers, save for when the motion necessitated that he do otherwise. They flowed from one step to the next, closer than they had any right to be without ever breaking the bounds of propriety. Things seemed to blur together for him, and it was difficult to tell if they were moving with the music, or if the music was rising to match them. Every step was certain, graceful, and every movement flowed into the next. She seemed to melt against him, pressing against his arms where she could, and he thought he felt her shiver as his hands moved over her skin. It was a heady sensation, and he felt a rush of...something...run through him. He smiled at her statement, eyes twinkling.

"As do I," he said, chuckling, "though I would rather that we had many more nights like this."

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Ivone
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Re: Out with the Old

Post by Ivone » Fri Apr 15, 2016 1:54 am

As they swept this way and that, Ivone would occasionally break Tius’ gaze from hers, by looking away in that demure way of hers. She didn’t want to misread or misinterpret the look in his eyes. So, she would look away, remind herself where she was. Look, without looking, at the others as they spun by. How had he managed to bring her so close that she would be so aware of him?

When her gaze returned and he made his declaration, she couldn’t help the surprise she felt. Her eyes widened slightly. He had chuckled, despite the look that flickered behind the amused twinkle he let the world see.

Don’t read too much into it. Ivone smiled, cheeky.

“Careful, Butterfly. Your father might hear you.” She looked away, smile still on her lips, before flicking her gaze back to his with a challenge.

“And, I might believe you.”

There was something to be said for extending tension like this without respite.

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Re: Out with the Old

Post by Vicentius » Sun Apr 17, 2016 7:24 pm

There was a challenge in her eyes, and he raised an eyebrow at her question. Was she toying with him? Did she desire that? Did he? It was difficult to say; decisions made in the heat of the moment were not to be trusted, after all. As before, it would have been easy to say yes, to take her in his arms and to claim her. With the mood she was in, she would have let him, he was certain, but that was not who he was. Or, at least, it was not who he wanted to be. More to the point, taking away her power would have...diminished her. That was Aurelio's mistake, both then and now, and he did not doubt that Sparrow would find him wanting.

"You might believe me?"

The music swelled again, and they turned almost effortlessly. His hands, of course, remained within the proper position, but it felt sometimes that she shifted position to test him. As one step blended into the next, he let his hands linger a moment longer than necessary to tease her before resuming the proper position. Was it pushing his luck? Of course it was; but only she would notice, and she seemed like she was of a mood to play. He made sure to look scandalized.

"My dear Bloom," he said, smiling, "how could you not? I am the very paragon of credibility."

He spun her, turning to lower her into a dip with a flourish before sweeping her back up again. It was a difficult maneuver, and one that took considerable practice, and when they rose back to resume the standard position, there were some appropriate cheers. It seemed almost that the band were taking it as a challenge, shifting the music choices and upping the tempo to keep pace with the passion of the dance. Was his father watching? Probably, he thought, and his father was likely dancing too, but in that moment, his father did not matter. Years of training, instinct and tradition came together, and he let the moment carry him.

"And why should your believing me be something to fear?"

The music dipped again, and he turned her, drawing her close. This was truly pushing his luck, but he was soaring on the wings of audacity now, and there was no stopping him.

"What ill would befall me," he asked, "if I succumbed to your charms?"

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Ivone
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Re: Out with the Old

Post by Ivone » Mon Apr 18, 2016 1:42 am

Ivone chuckled. How could she not at that posture? That comment? Her breath caught as he spun and dipped her, throwing her equilibrium figuratively out of whack. She executed it perfectly, limber and loose in his arms, malleable to his physicality. She smiled at him. Such trust!

It was his due to have pretty, sparkling accouterments. The fact that this one came with extras was (hopefully) just a bonus.

Ivone didn’t have a quick answer for that first question. The latter, though, was easy enough to play. A smirk. The blood rushed everywhere. Heat. Her heart beat and desire was like an electric current from her brain to her toes.

The room was empty. Nothing, no one else mattered while they danced. She couldn't even hear the music over his voice in her head. She couldn't see anyone else. There was nobody else. How could she have ever missed him?

Her response was light, teasing, full of jokes.

“Downfall. Tarnished reputation. Familial disowning. Ruin. Calamity. Take your pick.”

Tius released her and stepped back, executing a flawless bow. Ivone curtsied, low. Attemping to control her breath.

And suddenly, the room was full of people. When she rose, Ivone blinked and smiled up at Tius.

"Now, would be good, but much too obvious. Let's promenade once more before we take our leave, lest we look like foolish lovers."

Ivone slipped her arm through his, all too aware of his nearness. As a few people commented on their skillful dance, she inclined her head with that demure smile in place.

"I'm sure had it been anyone else, I would have looked a fish out of water. Tius' rivals his father as a dancer, does he not?" A sparkle of mischief.

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Re: Out with the Old

Post by Vicentius » Mon Apr 18, 2016 12:51 pm

He raised an eyebrow at her response, bringing them into the final steps of the dance. He supposed that those things should have been worrying; frightening even, but he was confident in his ability to recover should the worst happen. Perhaps that was arrogant, or overconfident of him, but he'd made his money, and even if he was no longer welcome at parties, he was too useful to dispose of yet. His established reputation as an oddball and his name would see that he did not disappear too quickly now. All they needed was a little help.

"We Morringtons are survivors, my Lady," he said, "and those things do not scare me."

They finished, and he stepped back, bowing fully and turning to direct the applause to his partner, who deserved it most. There was some emotion in her gaze again as she looked upon him, but it was difficult to read. Her words were telling, but he met them with a smile.

"I could stand to look foolish now and again," he said, "it does me good. But how could I part you from your adoring fans?"

He took her arm and waved away any attempts at praise.

"Please," he said, "I only polished a gem that already sparkled."

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Re: Out with the Old

Post by Ivone » Wed Apr 20, 2016 1:21 am

Ivone just chuckled and shook her head, accepting his deferral in due course. Had he done anything else, it would have been odd.

"You are too modest by far, Mr. Morrington."

Their admirers chuckled.

"Well, that would be a first for a Morrington!" Good natured teasing. When one is on top of the hill, one must expect others to jest.

"Oh, but he is. Didn't you know Mr. Morrington often facilitates charitable activities and gives of his time? I ran into a number of times volunteering at the hospital after the Gala. I, for one, found it uplifting to see scions of our Descendant families contributing in such visible ways. It shows a concern for Marn's well-being that warms me. Don't you think?"

Appraising gazes turned toward Tius.

"I had no idea. I agree, very heartening, indeed."

To proclaim his own goodness would have been gauche, but to have someone else sing his praises, well... that was a different story. Especially when communicated to Synevives and Titres.

Further small-talk continued and the band started up more tunes.

"Will you two be dancing further?"

"Oh no, I'm in process of moving house. You may have heard..." A few nods were given, concerned faces shown, "... and am so exhausted." Ivone turned her gaze to Tius.

"I hope it's not too much a bother for you?" To see her home, of course, but this would allow Tius to show how gallant he could be.

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Re: Out with the Old

Post by Vicentius » Sat Apr 23, 2016 1:31 pm

He smiled self-deprecatingly at the jest and held his hands up in mock surrender. Of course, modesty was a slightly undesired trait in Morringtons, who strove every day to build their own fortunes and claim their own power. Praise, his father had often said, went hand in hand with success, and while one should never seek it, one should not shirk from it when it was earned. In practice, this lead to many adopting a slightly elitist manner that made them seem cold, even though they saw it as accepting the compliments that they were due without fuss. Tius had little time for it, and anything that made him more approachable, that made people more amenable to what he needed them to do, was only to the good.

"Hopefully not the last," he said, chuckling, "my head is big enough as it is."

He was going to say more, but Ivone's words stole the limelight again, and he glanced down for a moment, his respect for her hidden behind a mask of slight discomfort at the newly appraising looks. Of course, he suspected that they knew, and well, what he'd been doing, but one could never tell with people. Shrugging, he cleared his throat and straightened, bowing slightly to Ivone.

"You are too kind by far, Miss Malatrast," he said, "lending a hand in these times is the very least one can do. Marn has been kind to me, and that is a debt I strive to repay."

At her words, he grew concerned, moving slightly closer to offer his support, and he shook his head.

"Nonsense, my lady," he said, "it is my honour."

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Re: Out with the Old

Post by Ivone » Sat Apr 23, 2016 3:05 pm

Ivone showed the appropriate amount of gratefulness that Tius, a Morrington, would ensure she made it home safely. She took his hand, inclining her head.

"Thank you, Mr. Morrington. Truly, you exemplify what all Descendants should be." Several heads nodded. More seeds planted.

Tius' actions with her this night were now cast in a different light than that of two lovers. Instead, he was suddenly a gallant gentleman giving a struggling woman, a Synevive even, kindesses. After all, given her situation, how would she have ever been able to attend the Harvest Ball - unemployed, homeless? And why wouldn't Ivone be a little taken with the Morrington scion? Especially given Aurelio's reputation and recent announcement?

The pair left: a grateful Synevive and a gallant Scion. What a picture they made! Quills scratched. Ivone's plight would be in the Daily Tattler along side a who's who and the Merynir-Moryldar alliance.

The carriage waited for them outside and Ivone graciosly lit the single step and settled herself within. Her gaze was expectant, waiting for Tius to join her.

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