Flashback: Vignettes of a marriage - November, 127 PW

The quiet, southern part of the city, where the residents have their homes.
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Ivone
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Flashback: Vignettes of a marriage - November, 127 PW

Post by Ivone » Thu Oct 10, 2013 12:52 am

127 PW

Tianthus Malatrast smiled down at his young wife and slipped into the bed beside her. Her face was unlined and peaceful. Her long, blonde hair splayed on the pillow behind her. He was amazed she slept soundly enough that he could slip into bed without her knowing. He imagined the soundness of her sleep was due to lack of worry. He ran his fingers through her hair. It was silky soft.

“Ivone...”

In her sleep, Ivone frowned and squirmed. Tian smiled. He couldn’t help himself.

“Ivone, it’s time to wake up.”

She moved, stretching then burrowing against him. Tian caught up her right hand and pressed it to his lips.

“Come on, you promised you would visit the shops and spend my ill-gotten gains.”

Ivone did not open her eyes, but she smiled.

“You are supposed to kiss to me to wake me up.”

“Ohh, my mistake my beautiful princess wife.”

Eyes still closed, Ivone turned her face up so Tian could kiss her. He pressed his lips against her forehead. Ivone’s eyes fluttered open.

“That is not the kind of kiss I meant.”

“Oh, I know, but that little flash of annoyance in your eyes amuses me.”

Tian let his hand slide down Ivone’s back to her rump and gave her a few light smacks. Ivone gave a small meep of a sound, then laughed.

“Come on, Ivi. I need to go see Khayyam, but I thought I would brush your hair for you before the maids descend and doll you up.”

“Tian, you know you don’t have to sleep in another room. We are married. I wouldn’t mind… anything.”

Tian smiled ruefully.

“Minx. You were 17 when we were married. While our age difference is not unusual, we both agreed to the marriage for common social conventions. I want you to spend more time with me. Talk with me. Finish university. For my sake, so I don’t feel like such an old pervert. Alright?”

Ivone laughed. “I am 18 now, Tian. My last university class is nearly complete. And, you are an old pervert or you wouldn’t have married such a young wife!” Ivone rolled onto her back and caught up a strand of hair, twirling it around her finger.

Putting on a little pout, she looked up at him as coquettishly as she knew how, which was nonexistent.
“Are you sure?”

Tian’s eyes widened. The genuineness and earnestness nearly did him in. He didn’t think that was a view he would tire of for some time to come. He hoped she would always be so open with him.

“No,” he growled at her with a grin. Scooping her up, he carried her over to her dressing table and sat her on the chair.

“Quit tempting me and hand me that brush.”

Ivone stuck her tongue out at Tian.

“You just wait. One of these days, I am going to wear down your stubborn refusals. Really! It’s enough to make a girl feel like a failure when she can’t seduce her own husband.”

She has no clue, thought Tian. Many wives couldn’t seduce their own husbands, but his wife was not one of them.

“You are no failure, Ivone. “ Tian gave Ivone a kiss on the top of her head, then began to brush her hair slowly. Ivone watched him in the mirror. She liked his face.

“I just want us to have a friendship and relationship that will last longer than many marriages do. I did not marry so I could find myself in a loveless one in a few years. I want more than someone to birth an heir. I want a companion.”

The brush made a soft sound as he drew it through her hair. In the soft morning light, her hair fell across her shoulders like spun gold.

Ivone felt like her heart was going to swell out of her chest. Her husband was such a good man!

“I love you, Tian.”

“I love you, too, Ivi.”
"Forgive, sounds good.
Forget, I'm not sure I could.
They say time heals everything, but I'm still waiting."


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Re: Flashback: Vignettes of a marriage

Post by Ivone » Fri Oct 11, 2013 11:34 pm

After he had safely disengaged from his wife's company, Tian decided to walk to the meeting he'd scheduled with Khayyam. The pair needed to discuss a charity Khayyam established and Tian wanted the elder man's input on another matter as well.

The morning was crisp. The chill air reddened his cheeks. Snow had not fallen, but Tian had no doubt it would come soon. The walk did him good. He needed to keep himself fit, especially now. Tian chuckled and smiled to himself, thoughts of his wife filling his head. Yes, he needed to make sure to take care of things for her. Khay would have good advice, even if he had originally thought marrying a woman much younger than him a little on the risque side. This gave Tian another chuckle.

The walk, thankfully, was uneventful. Soon, the gleaming white building of the Justice Center and its annex buildings came into view. Another thankful moment, that. Khay was not meeting him inside the Justice Center, but at the Gentleman's Club. This was not governmental business, after all.

A turn down a side street lead to another well-appointed building. A single, small, gleaming plaque announced the name of the establishment. As he mounted the steps, the door opened. An attractive older woman smiled at him. Her brown hair was tied back at the nape of her neck and draped over her left shoulder. The cut of her dress was modest, mostly, highlighting her ample bosom without being whorish. Her waist was slim and the skirt brushed the floor.

"Tianthus, back so soon?"

"Ah, Margaret, I'm here for business, not pleasure today. That will have to wait until later." Tian smiled genially at the hostess who returned his smile.

"You're always welcome." The hostess gestured for Tian to enter.

"Let me get your coat for you."

"Really, Margaret, you spoil me. Have one of the footmen do this."

"Nonsense, Tianthus. It's my pleasure."

With that, Margaret took his coat, scarf, hat, and gloves and left him to his own devices. Tian followed the hallway and opened a door. Inside, was a large, stately parlor. The room boasted several tables, comfortable chairs, and a large, warm fire. Bookshelves lined the walls and several copies of the Marn newspaper were also available.
"Forgive, sounds good.
Forget, I'm not sure I could.
They say time heals everything, but I'm still waiting."


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Re: Flashback: Vignettes of a marriage - November, 127 PW

Post by Azuel Vyaduka » Sun Oct 13, 2013 2:10 am

Khayyam Vyaduka stood at the window, a solitary old man. He was looking up at the sky, turbulent with dark clouds. As did many others, Khayyam did not find the sight at all worrysome. Rather, he relished the thought of the year’s first snow. It did not often snow in Marn, but one could count on its annual fall all the same. He fancied he could see the first snowflake, a distance off. It reminded him of his grandchildren. They would always be so excited on days like these, their faces pressed against the windows. Perhaps he was attempting to regain some of his youth, searching for the sight of winter’s tears.

The door across the room was pushed gracefully open, and Khayyam smiled warmly as he turned to face his guest. “Welcome, Tianthus.” His voice seemed as strong and proud as it ever was. He was so glad to be out of the Justice Hall for the evening, especially to meet with a younger friend such as Tianthus. While it was nice to have a say in Marn’s fate the politics could get tiresome for a man of his nature. It was refreshing to meet with more ordinary people, every once in a while. “I’m glad to see you. Do have a seat.”

He walked slowly over to his own chair, set beside the fire to keep his tired bones warm. “I must apologize, my friend.” He said, settling in. Finding himself at ease upon the luxurious seat, he continued, “My own grandson had to remind me of our visit, I’m afraid. I’ve forgotten what we were to discuss. It was some matter of the new,” He hesitated for a moment, as though his latest project had come to be regarded as such he had always shied from the word, “charity. I do remember that much.”

Perhaps it was less important to society than that work for the poor, but Khayyam knew some burden weighed heavily upon the man’s shoulders. Tianthus should surely have relegated impersonal matters to impersonal communication, and it would not do to have an individual need clouding the room as they spoke. It was best to resolve it openly and honestly. That was community: each man working in harmony.

Khayyam shook his head and chuckled. “Ah, but listen to me go on. The judges have made me all about business. It can wait. Surely there is something else on your mind.”

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Re: Flashback: Vignettes of a marriage - November, 127 PW

Post by Ivone » Tue Oct 15, 2013 9:15 pm

Tian gave Khayyam a return smile as he moved across the room. Tian clasped Khayyam's hand briefly and nodded.

"And you as welll, Khayyam."

Tian settled in a comfortably appointed chair opposite the older man and enjoyed the warmth of the fire. Another staff member, this one an attractive and well-dressed young man, entered pushing a tray with a variety of options upon it: brandy, tea, coffee, finger sandwiches, and little cakes. The Gentlemen's Club was than just a place to meet. The club boasted a spa and sauna, a very high-class brothel, a well-stocked pantry, and a well-maintained and manicured back garden to name just a few of its features.

“I must apologize, my friend. My own grandson had to remind me of our visit, I’m afraid. I’ve forgotten what we were to discuss. It was some matter of the new ... charity. I do remember that much. Ah, but listen to me go on. The judges have made me all about business. It can wait. Surely there is something else on your mind.”

Tian chuckled.

"I'm sure the needs of the city keep you quite busy. I'm glad you were able to find time in your schedule to meet with me." When the staff member pushed the cart near them, Tian chose a cup of coffee and some fruit.

"Actually, I was hoping to ask a favor of you. I want to know Ivone is well cared for, should something happen to me. I want to ensure she has an income that my family cannot take from her in the event I have an untimely end." Tian leaned back in his chair and took a sip from his cup.

"Ivone is talented at making sundries of a personal nature - candles, soaps, scented oils, and the like. I have encouraged her to pursue this interest, but I cannot imagine her conducting a trade llike that. She really is not trained for such things."

Crinkles appeared around Tian's eyes. "She doesn't know it yet, but I've put the house in her name. That is the first step. The next step is a guaranteed income untouchable by my family. I know I can trust you to steer me in the right direction. What say you? Any suggestions?"
"Forgive, sounds good.
Forget, I'm not sure I could.
They say time heals everything, but I'm still waiting."


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Azuel Vyaduka
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Re: Flashback: Vignettes of a marriage - November, 127 PW

Post by Azuel Vyaduka » Fri Oct 18, 2013 1:29 am

Khayyam smiled and drew himself upwards. Some families had alliances. The Vyadukas had friends, which by Khayyam’s estimation was the greater by far. At least, except for that wretched son of his, who sought to turn their family into the same schemers that Marn was already filled to the brim with. He distanced himself from the thought: now was not the time for such direness, especially against his own child.

“A noble request.” He scratched his chin, then reached cautiously over to the tea. Taking a sip and finding it to his satisfaction, he breathed in the scent and set it down upon the table. Tianthalus was such a kindly soul that he should seek to protect his wife even in death.

His mind circling through options and avenues to the fulfillment of his request, Khayyam also mused over family matters of a more mundane nature. “You work on an hier with that girl before it’s too late, you hear me Tianthus? Then wait another forty years and look to your grandchildren. That’s where the legacy lies.” He chuckled, and with a light tone of humor continued, “Why, that alone may even solve our quandary. A loyal son to look out for dear Ivone. You must know young men ever adore their mothers.”

The servant realized after a moment that Khayyam was not about to take anything more and wheeled the cart back out of the room. He quietly and professionally shut the door behind him, but was unable to resist one last glance at the proceedings before he closed the entrance entirely. The door shut with a click.

Khayyam sighed. “But perhaps we can come to a more immediately practical arrangement.” He thought further, eventually considering asking his son for aid. His son could likely achieve it, having a firm head for income. But the judge did not like the idea of involving Tianthus and Ivone with Maalik one bit. His son might do it under pressure, but his boy had never understood the love or affection that motivated the actions of people like the man before him. In some ways, that scared Khayyam. Just what loyalty did a loveless man owe his father, much less the wife of his father’s aquaintance?

Still, he was dedicated to his friend, and resolved to bring up the possibility. At least, if no better ideas came to him. He shifted somewhat uncomfortably as he listened to Tianthus speak.

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Sebastian Morylin
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Re: Flashback: Vignettes of a marriage - November, 127 PW

Post by Sebastian Morylin » Sun Oct 20, 2013 7:59 am

Three days. Three very long days. It had been three very long days since the Elf Invasion, as Sebastian had started calling it, had taken over their home.

“Remind me again why I had thought it might be nice having them over?” Stephan asked when he was sure they were far enough away from the house so as not to be overheard.

“You were foolish enough to believe that things would be different this time. Or you assumed that having a house full of women would mean you would have less work around to do.” Sebastian’s dry attempt at humor wasn’t lost on his partner. In return he received Stephan’s best shot at trying to suppress a chuckle.

They walked in silence for a while taking in the pleasant sights of a new day unfolding before them. The crisp winter air filled their lungs and reddened their noses. It did wonders for clearing their minds and curing their shared hangover.

“Why did you insist that I drink with you last night?” Sebastian finally broke the silence.

“Because you needed it. You haven’t seen your office yet?” Stephan tried to best to hold back a smile. “Yesterday your books had been tossed in a corner and your desk had become a sewing table. One of Ami’s sisters has been sleeping on the couch and I believe I saw some new baby clothes made out of what had been the curtains."

Sebastian could only rub his temple and slowly shake his head at the headache having Amillari’s family over was causing.

“Then, I probably shouldn’t tell you I found her mother and grandmother out in your garden again this morning. Last night they were complaining about running out of tea and needing more.”

“THAT’S what they were arguing about last night?” Stephan’s raised voice drew the attention of a few passerbys that quickly lost interest and went about their own tasks. “I just restocked the tea in the kitchen last week. That should have lasted another month.”

“I would have translated it for you last night but I figured after you started drinking that it would be best not to cause another fight.”

“They’ve been living in Marn for nearly fifty years now, you would think they would learn to speak the local language. I think they do it just to irritate me.” Stephan felt frustrated, Sebastian could tell that much, it had to be hard being the only one in the house over the age of five that couldn’t communicate with everyone else. However, Stephan made sure to repeatedly thank him for his patience and understanding as well as his help in trying to reach out to Ami’s family. Stephan was always trying to go beyond the call to help everyone; in this circumstance he had determined that Ami needed to be surrounded by her family, the women in particular, to help her through the birth of their second child.

“So what was the real reason for you wanting us to leave the house this morning?” Sebastian had to ask. “I checked the logs just the other day and we aren’t scheduled to meet with our jar supplier for another week. I had set the appointment myself so as not to conflict with the birth.”

“You caught me,” Stephan said sheepishly as he wrapped his coat tighter around his chest. “I lied. I wanted to get out of the house, enjoy the peace and quiet and possibly visit a friend. I haven’t spoken with her in a while, what with us being so busy and all, but I really thought you should meet her. She has a real knack for making her own lotions and creams, though hers tend to be more cosmetic than medicinal.”

Sebastian had never been all that interested in the production part of the business, that was Stephan’s passion, but he cared enough for the man that he went along with him out of emotional support. He loved Stephan; Stephan loved learning new ways of helping others, so Sebastian was there to encourage him at every step. Perhaps , he thought, she might need information on finances and record keeping. Which were two aspects that Stephan, bless his heart, failed miserably at.

They spoke on various topics from the weather to some of the absurd elf names that Ami’s mother had suggested for the baby, on their way to the house of Ivone and Tianthus Malatrast. Had they chosen to take a direct route they could have made the trip in less than half the time, but they would have had to completely bypass Memorial Park to do so and it was just too lovely of a sight this time a day to do so, even if it was quite chilly outside.

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Re: Flashback: Vignettes of a marriage - November, 127 PW

Post by Ivone » Sun Oct 27, 2013 2:43 pm

Tian looked away at the mention of an heir. He had been keeping away from Ivone on purpose. He was worried he could not father an heir. After all, even with care, sometimes accidents do happen. And, in all his years, a baby had never resulted.

"Soon."

But even then, should he father an heir, that would not necessarily ensure Ivone and his child would be well-cared for. She was Synevive, not Descendant. Although, he supposed she could go back to her family. They benefited well from Ivone's marriage. It was a shame his closest friend was so much older.

"You're in good health and so am I, but should something happen... perhaps you could be the trustee for Ivone. You are my closest friend and I trust you to care for her as much as I do." Tian took a drink from his cup.

"Speaking of which, you must come to dinner sometime soon. I think you only had a chance to meet her briefly at the wedding reception. Ivone really is an amazing woman." To say Tian doted on his wife would be an understatement. He was already in process of finishing up ties with his liaisons. Tian intended to be wholly faithful to his wife once they consummated the marriage. It would be unfair to her to do any less. Thankfully, his usual courtesan understood the need and was well taken care of. She was a high-class courtesan, who lived on the floors above the Gentlemen's Club. Her job and her clientele required her to be circumspect and refined. He planned to inform her today that he was terminating their contract once he finished meeting with Khayyam.

~~~~~~~~~~~

Ivone checked herself in the mirror once more. She had chosen a tourmaline dress with matching necklace and earrings for her visit to Stephan's shop. She wanted to present herself well to Stephan's business partner. She hoped the pair would allow her to sell her products in their shop and to learn more about herbal medicine from Stephan. Several books in the University library offered information on native plants, but Ivone was concerned she would make something harmful instead of beneficial.

Ivone entered the Conservatory and began the process of caring for her "special" plants, the ones she used to scent her products. The chill winter had her honey bees hibernating, so beeswax was out. Glycerin was another option, but she needed additional ingredients. Yet another reason to visit Stephan's shop. Ivone hummed softly to herself and smiled. Tian would be pleased at her initiative and progress.
"Forgive, sounds good.
Forget, I'm not sure I could.
They say time heals everything, but I'm still waiting."


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Azuel Vyaduka
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Re: Flashback: Vignettes of a marriage - November, 127 PW

Post by Azuel Vyaduka » Mon Oct 28, 2013 11:04 pm

Khayyam was in the midst of picking up his tea for another sip when he noticed Tianthalus’ pause. The elderly judge hesitated for a moment himself before putting down his tea. He was not quite certain where he had erred, even if his comments had been perhaps a bit frank. Surely such should pass uninhibited between them.

The tea made a slight clattering noise as he put it down perhaps too hastily. Before he could inquire as to his mistake, Tianthalus caught him of guard with his request. “Why... yes, of course I will,” Khayyam said, perhaps a bit overeager to comply. While it certainly was a solution, it did rely on the assumption that his tired old bones were going to outlast Tianthalus, and made him quite earnestly concerned for his friend’s health. He said he was healthy, of course, but he had seen many a man succumb to denial and knew that such actions were not limited to morally weak men. Regardless, operating as a trustee allowed him to escape trusting his son. That would be enough for now. He refrained from voicing his concerns.

He did give Tianthalus a long look as the other man went on to invite him to dinner. He certainly seemed happy enough. Perhaps he was doing his friend a disservice to assume such vile things of his status. Perhaps he simply knew the value of caution. Khayyam privately winced as he conceded that it was perhaps not a strength he himself could claim to bear. Refraining from dwelling on that particular thought, his face regained its earnest smile. “I’d love nothing else more. Did you have any particular day in mind?”

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Re: Flashback: Vignettes of a marriage - November, 127 PW

Post by Ivone » Tue Oct 29, 2013 3:31 pm

"Your schedule dictates, my friend. Would two days hence work for you? Ivi turned 18 yesterday and I want to have a small party for her with close friends and family."

Tian was pleased Khayyam agreed so readily. Khayyam really was not that much older than Tianthalus, all things considered. Tian was 48 and the elder Vyaduka couldn't be more than then ten years his senior. Despite the short lives of most humans, Tian and Khayyam were vital and healthy men.

"And don't make that face. I am quite healthy and so are you. You know you aren't that much older than I. Plus, the doctors gave me a clean bill of health." Tian smiled conspiratorially. "Everything is working as it should."
"Forgive, sounds good.
Forget, I'm not sure I could.
They say time heals everything, but I'm still waiting."


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Sebastian Morylin
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Re: Flashback: Vignettes of a marriage - November, 127 PW

Post by Sebastian Morylin » Wed Nov 06, 2013 7:51 pm

Stephan knocked on the front door.

"I want to give Ms. Ivone a tour of the shop. She has expressed in interest in the possibility of selling some of her cosmetics and I think it be a good way to us to attract more female customers." He spoke with Sebastian on the doorstep as they waited for a reply.

"The majority of our customers are already female, but I agree, it could be a good investment on our part to appeal to more than just their medical needs. Perhaps we could set up a display by the door, under the window, where they can see it from the street. Of course, we would have to charge her a percentage of the sales, but that is something we can work out together."

A cold droplet fell down the back of Sebastian's collar, causing him to shiver.

"Perhaps, we should put on some tea when we get to the shop."

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Ivone
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Re: Flashback: Vignettes of a marriage - November, 127 PW

Post by Ivone » Thu Nov 07, 2013 12:35 am

A butler opened the door on first ring and greeted the two men.

"Please come in and allow me to take your coats."

The foyer was warm, well lit, and well appointed. Tianthus was a nephew to the main Malatrast matriach. As such, he and his wife were well off. Not as rich as Croesius, but certainly more than comfortable and it showed.

When the bell rang, Ivone wiped her hands and made her way to greet her guests. Entering from the drawing room, she extended both hands to Stephan.

"Stephan, thank you for coming." Ivone beamed up at Stephan, offering her cheek for the customary busk. She had not met Sebastian yet, so waited to be introduced. She did glance to Sebastian in curiosity as she waited.
"Forgive, sounds good.
Forget, I'm not sure I could.
They say time heals everything, but I'm still waiting."


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Re: Flashback: Vignettes of a marriage - November, 127 PW

Post by Azuel Vyaduka » Sun Nov 10, 2013 10:10 pm

Khayyam laughed briefly, embarrassed at having been read so well. Retaining his jovial smile, he commented “Bah. You could at least let me pretend to be an old relic. I rather enjoy pretending I am wiser than I am.” His laughter died to a chuckle as he continued “Ah, but I still feel as if there is ever more to do.”

Privately, he acknowledged that Tianthalus’s comments had done much to reassure him. Surely he had simply overacted, such deception was beyond them. “Speaking of which, I do in fact have something to do that day, as my colleagues have chosen to disagree with me on a matter of... well, that surely doesn’t interest you.” He said, convincingly dismissive. Khayyam had found it rarely made appropriate conversation if the battlemages were the topic. “Rest assured, all evidence points to its end before dinner, but if I am delayed you should understand.”

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Re: Flashback: Vignettes of a marriage - November, 127 PW

Post by Ivone » Sun Nov 17, 2013 8:19 pm

"Never, my friend. If I let you pretend you are a relic, then I will have to admit to being old." Tian gave his friend a smile. "Yes, there's always more to do, which is why we keep ourselves healthy and fit!

"I wouldn't presume to understand what it is you Judges must deal with every day. I am glad, though, to facilitate the introduction of new plays to our fair city." Tian took a final sip of his drink. "Speaking of which, that is my work for today... I must head go speak with the theater owner and examine the budget for repairs. I suspect the costs are higher than necessary, if you understand me." Tian chuckled, such was the way of things.

He also had to meet with Jaime. It was time to conclude their relationship. He needed to put that part of his life behind him, if he were to be a good husband and father in the future.

Tian stood. He was not a big man. He was slim and stood just shy of 5'9. He kept his face smooth shaven, a fact that lent him a more youthful appearance, even at age 47. HIs hair was light brown, curling closely around his head in careless waves. His eyes were a pale blue, framed by thick lashes. His face was softly angled.

"With that, I'll take my leave, Khayyam. I look forward to your joining us this Thursday. As for the other, I'll have the papers drawn up and sent to you for your review. Until then?"
"Forgive, sounds good.
Forget, I'm not sure I could.
They say time heals everything, but I'm still waiting."


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Sebastian Morylin
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Re: Flashback: Vignettes of a marriage - November, 127 PW

Post by Sebastian Morylin » Thu Dec 12, 2013 1:12 am

The Cottrel's had raised their son, Stephan, to the height of all things concerning manners and proper etiquette. He was nothing if not polite. Had he chosen a different path for himself he could have done well in the proper circles of Marn's upperclass. It was only with years of experience that he was able to bend down to reach the cheek of the much shorter woman in such a graceful manner while hiding the strain such an action would cause on a man of his height.

Sebastian was lucky that that was something he rarely had to trouble himself with.

"My dear Ivone," he addressed her in only the way he would speak to a close friend. "I would like to introduce you to my partner, Sebastian."

He placed one hand on the other man's shoulder so as to pull him closer.

"I have already spoken with him about our idea to sell some of your products in our shop, but I thought it best if the two of you could meet to discuss it further. Sebastian might even be able to help you figure out the financial aspects of the arrangement, if you would like."

Sebastian, who had been standing there silent through the whole introduction, finally spoke up to tell their host what a lovely home she had.

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Re: Flashback: Vignettes of a marriage - November, 127 PW

Post by Ivone » Sat Dec 14, 2013 3:53 am

Ivone smiled at Sebastian. She had to look up to both men, but that was a common enough occurrence that she did not make note of it.

"A pleasure to finally meet you and thank you. I look forward to your guidance, Sebastian. I admit to needing someone with better financial acumen than I. Please, would you join me in the parlour?" Ivone gestured in the direction opposite the one she had come.
"Forgive, sounds good.
Forget, I'm not sure I could.
They say time heals everything, but I'm still waiting."


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