Abhorash and the Artist Pt.2

edited June 2020 in Roleplay Logs
Making art in text is something else. A big thank you to @Abhorash and @Rebra for another wonderful session!

A tremendous ballroom.
A monument to excess and hedonism, the ballroom's main floor holds enough space for an army, hung with curtains and decorative drapes. A great iron chandelier illuminates the dance floor, making sharp, black shadows of the revelers. In the distant corners of the rooms, row upon row of ornate wooden chairs await, should one need a break or a place to commingle with their brethren. A formal black and crystal chandelier hangs from the lofty ceiling, its crystal facets capturing the candlelight dazzlingly. Flecks of shale fling from a colossal earthen guard with each ambling motion he makes. Scanning the surroundings with a cool expression, a domineering Carnifex knight stands on watch here. An earthen acolyte stands here, sand pooling at his feet. Muttering emanates from behind the cowl of a scion of despair, a tarot card alight betwixt her gnarled, clawed fingers. Resting on the ground is a cube-shaped silver sigil. A sigil in the shape of a small, rectangular monolith is on the ground. Humming with energy, a crystal aegis has been attuned to this location. A glowing red flame-shaped sigil has been left here. Abhorash is here. The ballroom is awash in romantic candlelight from the suspended chandelier.
You see exits leading northeast, southeast, southwest, and northwest

You have emoted: Shadows are more prevalent near the chairs, where a certain artist known as Galilei might linger - perhaps looking over the ballroom herself, taking in the atmosphere and decor.

Abhorash stands near the eastern wall. Slow steps bring the man pacing from one end to the other as his eyes trace his path.

You have emoted: The mass of shadows shift, subtly enough to almost pass Abhorash's keen eyes unnoticed, but not quite. As though realising this, Galilei drops the shade about her with a flick of her wrist.

Echoes ring throughout the ballroom with each step, far louder than befitting Abhorash's slender form. As the Progenitor nears the northeastern corner, the steps abruptly cease with finality. "A long time since I last graced this ballroom," he speaks - though his voice is directed at the wall, it carries sharp and clear through the room.

You have emoted: Galilei's silvery eyes travel downward, examining the shoes that ring out his steps so heavily. Her own movements are betrayed by faint chimes of crystal upon the floors. "Do you find it the same as it once was, Progenitor?"

"Nothing is as it once was," Abhorash replies curtly. He does not deign to face his companion, instead folding his hands formally in front of him. Intense scrutiny of his chosen corner follows before he speaks again. "This too, will change."

You have emoted: "This place certainly is magnificent, though that does not exempt a thing from change." Galilei hesitates the briefest moment before continuing her approach. When she stops, she is standing not quite beside Abhorash but about two steps behind that, though even had she walked further, his indomitable focus would have kept her out of his field of vision. "How do you see this place changing, Progenitor?"

Abhorash does not react to your inquiry - more footsteps soon send their own echoes ringing through the ballroom, however, approaching.

You have emoted: Galilei stands still, her own pale hands folded before her. The carved gemstones hanging by a pointed ear chime out her attention as her gaze follows Abhorash.

Heavy footfalls bring Krisiina, blood slave of Abhorash into the ballroom, her tail trailing gracefully behind her. A massive white and gold fountain follows in her wake, just beyond her fingertips - the ensorcelled fountain floats seemingly weightlessly beside her. Spotting her enslaver, Krisiina dutifully proceeds to the same corner, fountain following.

Standing at almost eight feet in height, Krisiina, high mage of Xaanhal is a powerful Xoran woman. Clad in shimmering black robes, a long hood falls behind her head, tossed free of her proud face. Jet-black eyes stare out amid burnished copper scales; her face is far from beautiful, hundreds of scars brutally slashed over her features, but despite this Krisiina carries herself with a clear air of pride and authority. Her staff, held comfortably in one hand, is a twisted length almost as tall as she, capped with sibilantly hissing flames of a silver-tipped ebony.

Though no outward indication arises from Abhorash, he bends the bloodslave effortlessly to his will. The sheer weight of his command radiates outwards from the Progenitor with crushing pressure; the Xoran moves wordlessly beside her master, affording him a wide berth with the floating fountain.

You have emoted: Galilei's gaze slides slowly between the three - Progenitor, bloodslave and fountain, and a smaller book makes a quiet appearance in her hands.

This fountain matches the ballroom in its opulence, a testament to excess. Its massive base of white marble dominates the northeastern corner of the ballroom, supporting an ornate pillar protruding from the middle of the fountain. The centerpiece towers high above the ground, segmenting in the middle and just before the top with consecutively smaller bowls. Golden scrollwork runs all along the otherwise pristine fountain, ornate depictions of flowing script. The fountain holds no liquid at present.

No spoken direction is required as Krisiina, blood slave of Abhorash sends the fountain floating to the desired spot, situated symmetrically between the rows of chairs adorning the corner. Once in position, the fountain is lowered gracefully to the floor.

Rebra enters from the southwest, riding a war-painted orel.
Rebra performs a graceful curtsey.

You have emoted: Galilei presses her little book closer to her chest at Rebra's entry and bows.

Rebra turns towards you and breaks into small smile. She dips her head.

The placement of a magnificent three-tiered fountain finished, Abhorash unfolds his hands, finally turning from the corner to face his companions - both old and new. "The base is set. I have tasked some of yours to fill it." No attention is spared for Krisiina.

None is needed - her purpose fulfilled, Krisiina, blood slave of Abhorash departs, her heavy footfalls soon fading from earshot.

Krisiina, blood slave of Abhorash strides briskly southwest, head high.

Rebra breaks into a smile as she turns to admire the three-tiered fountain.

You have emoted: Galilei quietly moves toward the fountain, gaze locking onto the script after one more wide-eyed appraisal of its design.

Cold blue eyes find Rebra now, Abhorash angling himself to face her. "You may communicate your ideas to me however you wish."

Rebra nods respectfully. She takes a pale rose letter from her hands, carefully handing it to Abhorash. "Written upon the letter are some of my thoughts. I do not know what is acceptable or possible or reasonable for you. I can also elaborate or clarify, Progenitor, if you so wish." She breaks into a small smile. "But the fountain looks lovely."

You feel a sudden and inexplicable anger towards the man close to you for a moment. It fills every part of your being, then fades away as suddenly as it arrived.

You have emoted: Galilei stands still for a moment, apparently finding some particularly interesting vein in the marble.

Abhorash scans the letter with perfunctory attention. "Acceptable," he declares after a quick moment, sending it into the pocket of his red military jacket without a second thought. "I have something for you all as well." His neck turns to affix you with his stare, the lightest hint of amusement quirking his lips at your seemingly unrelated, yet sudden, interest in the fountain. "Inspired by the Grand Duchess."

Rebra's lips fall open slightly. She turns her yellow gaze to you, a small smile quirking upon her lips.

You have emoted: The rosy flush at Galilei's ears creeps lower into her cheeks, but she courteously waits for Abhorash to unveil his addition. The younger Consanguine is smiling back.

Amusement tugs Abhorash's lips further at the anticipation before it is abruptly gone. "I did mention I required your time first, Grand Duchess. Such efforts are not instantaneous."

You have emoted: Galilei catches on and bows her head gracefully, a hand resting upon her brooch. "Of course, Progenitor. Time I have to give."

Rebra continues to examine you with candid curiosity for a moment. she turns back to Abhorash, asking, "Shall I give the two of you space to work, Progenitor?"

Another wave of emotion that is clearly not your own strikes. There is a sense of confusion, followed by what might be sorrow. While these are not directed at the Progenitor, they feel just as strong as the anger before.

"That is the Grand Duchess' decision," Abhorash replies, stare still directed at you. "I require her to explain and demonstrate her talent."

You have emoted: "I see no need for particular secrecy," Galilei says to Rebra. "I have been tasked with setting up a portrait station for the upcoming Ball, Your Imperial Highness. A good demonstration of the heights of culture our community has reached."

Comprehension flashes across Rebra's face.

Rebra says, "That sounds amazing. To display works of art?"

You say to Rebra, "The details are to be worked out, but I foresee many works will come to brighten the Dominion's name."

Abhorash says, "I would not keep the Grand Duchess from enjoying the festivities. My creation will produce portraits by itself, of participants alone or in pairs, as desired."

Comprehension flashes across Rebra's face.

I need to figure out how that works.

With an admiring tone, Rebra says to Abhorash, "It would capture images on its own? That would be incredible to observe..."

A sickly-looking bat comes flapping into the room, drops an elegant white letter into Abhorash's hands, emits a high-pitched squeaking sound, and flaps away.

"However," Abhorash says, a faint smile returning to his face as he holds both hands in front of him. The right curls slowly into a fist. "Art is not what my hands wrought. I will require the Grand Duchess to demonstrate and model, first. Her talent as the inspiration."

What sorcery is this? Intriguing.

Sensing confusion, Abhorash beckons the pair of you to follow. "Simpler to demonstrate."

Rebra falls into step behind Abhorash, curiosity upon her face.

You have emoted: Galilei follows without hesitation, her expression mirroring Rebra's.

A private lounge.
This small room is enclosed for privacy, with no windows, thick walls, and plush carpeting muffling normal range of sound from leaving the room. Soft candlelight caresses the shape of the luxurious furniture positioned in the center of the room, designed with utmost comfort and prestige in mind. A life-sized oil painting of the Primus himself graces one wall, his arrogant and regal countenance captured perfectly in a scene with him seated on his throne in the Font of Blood. A frail and dandily dressed man stands here. Pale and glassy-eyed, a nubile slave stands by, awaiting the will of her masters. A plush, wingback chair is positioned next to the smoker's table. A plush, overstuffed wingback chair occupies part of the space here. Shaped with free-flowing curves, a red velvet fainting couch draws attention here. Positioned against the northwestern wall is an elegant, cushioned bench. Resting on the ground is a cube-shaped silver sigil. A sigil in the shape of a small, rectangular monolith is on the ground.
You see exits leading northeast (closed walnut door) and southwest (closed walnut door).

As Abhorash enters the lounge, he is greeted by his own massive portrait adorning the wall. The life-sized paint imitation draws only a brief glance before the Progenitor advances into the room proper. The doors close of their own accord as he leads the pair of you to the center.

Rebra follows Abhorash to the centre of the chamber, twisting slightly to watch as the doors close without physical intervention. She turns back to Abhorash, yellow eyes gleaming.

Abhorash finds a seat on a plush wingback chair, folding his hands between his knees, learning forward slightly. "Do you have your tools, Grand Duchess?"

You have emoted: "I have not brought an easel or a canvas with me," Galilei says, "But that can be arranged. The sketchbook and charcoal from before I do have."

"Suitable," Abhorash declares from his seat. "Draw something, if you will." Phrased like a request, his tone suggests otherwise. A waving hand demonstrates the potential subject matter of the room - Rebra, a frail eunuch bloodslave, nubile bloodslaves.

She is a powerful Azudim vampire of Human heritage who is small of frame, possessing skin that is pale in tone but dotted in places by clusters of freckles. At her temples are small tufts of black-red feathers, giving her a predatory appearance. Vivid crimson hair droops onto her shoulders in a cascade of waves, and her reflective yellow eyes survey her surroundings inscrutably. She holds her slightly plump arms lightly by her sides, her long fingers sometimes clenching to some hidden thought. A cloying layer of diamond dust utterly covers them. Folding neatly over her shoulder is an open book of jade essence and the tail of the quill that is depicted scribbling into its pages is wrapped cruelly around her throat. Duskywing butterflies flit lazily around her as a sign of Chakrasul's blessing. Earth and stone cling to her form under the blessing of the Earthen Lord.
She is wearing:
a length of jade and onyx prayer beads, around the waist
carved feather earrings of jade tourmaline, worn on the ears
an elegant black velvet cloak, hanging from the shoulders
a wedding ring of intertwining branches, on the left ring finger
a reri wo esityi medal, around the neck
a stunning dress of sanguine silk, covering the body
an encaged miniature duskywing butterfly, around one wrist
a snarling, panther's head ring, on the right index finger
sanguinite and fallen star prayer beads of despair, around one wrist
a perfumed sanguine bloodflower, tucked neatly in her hair
a bejeweled venantium mind's eye, between the eyebrows

The eunuch is a thin man with feminine features, and dressed in colours more likely to be seen on the el'Jaziran woman than men. He seems skittish and uninterested in conversation.
The bloodslave is currently at full vitality.

A human woman of young, but indeterminate age, this slave is lithe, her snowy white skin traced with swollen veins. Her only clothing is a ceremonial loincloth of dark crimson silk, and even this does little to conceal her.
The bloodslave is currently at full vitality.

You have emoted: Galilei's silvery eyes take time to observe each model. Certain details appear to catch her eye - the jade-tinted image at Rebra's neck, the swollen, bluish lines pulsing beneath the skin of a nubile bloodslave, the timid way a frail eunuch bloodslave holds himself.

A snowy owl soars towards Abhorash, alighting briefly on his shoulder as it drops an elegant white letter into Abhorash's hands. With a soft hoot, it takes flight once again, gliding loftily away.

Abhorash's apparent popularity is given no attention, each letter disappearing into the jacket without perusal.

Has ever a portrait been made for the meek and nameless?

You have emoted: Galilei's expression is placid, as usual, little betraying the small leap her heart makes as she crosses to a frail eunuch bloodslave.

Rebra's eyes follows your gaze as it lands on herself, then each blood slave within the chamber. She dips her head at you, an open expression upon her face.

Softly, you say to a frail eunuch bloodslave, "You might have seen me here once, or perhaps it was someone else on duty. Nevertheless, we'll be trying something rather different."

The bloodslave is beneath Abhorash's attention, his focused gaze honed in on you alone.

Rebra's lips quirk slightly. She inclines her head at a frail eunuch bloodslave, then she takes her place by one of the other chairs in the lounge, her fingers resting lightly on the seat back.

You have emoted: Galilei opts to look over a frail eunuch bloodslave openly before she begins, rather than immediately opening her sketchbook and bombarding the slave with quick, sharp glances, perhaps out of some idea of courtesy. "All you need to do is stay still," she promises, sliding out the charcoal stick once more from its metal cage. A faint circle is traced upon the thick paper and straighter lines mark placements for the facial features, for the shoulder and limbs and torso. More light etches - light and decisive, to plot out the flow of the fabric draped around the man.

You have emoted: The gentle smile from before slowly loses purchase upon Galilei's countenance, the Consanguine pouring in the same amount of care and focus here as she had for a portrait of Abhorash. She makes adjustments upon the broad outlines, her well-loved piece of bread appearing to erase, and erase again. She appears to have something in mind, from the shrewd way she observes a frail eunuch bloodslave posture and in particular the look in his eyes, which is far from regal or assured. A few lines lengthen, her own movements taking on a strange boldness, and subtle changes appear about her eyes and mouth while she emulates what she hopes to portray.

For once, Abhorash's movements are understated, almost unnoticed behind the main action unfolding. The sleeve of his jacket is carefully rolled up, exposing a pale wrist. The other hand finds purchase upon that wrist; fingernail sinks beneath the skin, bringing forth a rush of crimson as the pressure of the finger retreats. A single drop of the Progenitor's blood is allowed to fall.

Rebra's eyes flicker towards the drop of blood.

You will be beautiful.

You will be proud.

The droplet seems to fall unnaturally slow. Just before the end of its journey, it abruptly flares upwards, flattening into a single thin streak as it floats upwards towards the eunuch. Hovering beside the Grand Duchess, crimson contorts - familiar lines, a familiar pattern, features that imitate. Lacking the artist's practiced skill, the representation is unpolished, a flawed reflection of the talent it emulates.

Rebra lifts her eyebrows, lips slightly parted. The crimson imitation of the frail eunuch slave reflects in her eyes, turning her irises a faint orange in hue.

You have emoted: Galilei's left hand tightens behind her sketchbook and she holds it closer to her while her other hand sketches away. She has noticed the twisting lines of red, but it is offered only the briefest of glances before she returns to her work. It becomes clear she is attempting to bring out something hidden, rather than adhere to the surface appearance of her mute subject, and her efforts to reconcile the outer shell with the quality she searches for manifest in the recurring appearance of the piece of bread, and the pinprick line between her pale brows.

Abhorash's wounded wrist is hidden from view as the sleeve is restored, crimson fading beneath crimson. He settles almost casually against the chair now, one hand finding the armrest of the chair, the other hanging over his knee. The blood imitation dancing alongside you lacks your passion, lines bereft of the same careful precision.

You have emoted: Galilei lets her hand still for a moment and holds the sketch further away from herself, examining it from various angles. She lifts her hardened, bright silver eyes to look upon a frail eunuch bloodslave. If she was still living she would have been breathing noticeably, working through both her vision and her subject until - somehow - something clicks. Her hand has slowed when she returns to the sketch. When she erases a few lines, her touch is gentle once again, and the smile from before has resurfaced. Whatever she is depicting, it is more intimate to her than the stranger before her eyes. Yet the triumphant curve to her lips hold no consternation over the fact. After a moment, she slowly lifts her head, looks to her work, then her model, then at last at Abhorash. And she nods.

When you smile, Rebra also breaks into a small smile, as if she had held herself in tension until the Grand Duchess's work is completed. She remains where she stands, fingertips resting lightly upon chairback. Her yellow eyes trace a path among a frail eunuch bloodslave, you, and Abhorash.

Abhorash rises to his feet now, striding to stand behind you. He stares over your shoulder, curious at what he might find.

You have emoted: Galilei has indeed depicted a frail eunuch bloodslave. There are no deviations made to his physical traits. Dark, feathery locks of hair brush the shell of his ears just so, and no attempt is made to modify his almost pretty features. The initial bold and flowing lines of his silken garments have gone through a change, however. The robes remain draped demurely about him; his hands are clasped before himself, fingers interlocked, but there is no strained tightness around them; the curve of his shoulders are oddly straighter in the painting, despite the angles and lines not being too different from his actual self. His expression soft as it usually is, but the size of the sketch itself allows for small details that take this apparent meekness and fill it from the inside with something different, a sense of peace, and of patience that still shines through the wanness - like a flowering weed that still stands to drink in the sun, having fed on the storms and winds that have battered it.

Rebra steps forward, taking a careful look at your work from a distance, but keeping space around Abhorash. She pauses, lips slightly parted, the glint of her fangs barely visible.

Abhorash takes in the portrait without sparing a glance for its real counterpart. A step carries him to the side now, where he regards the mirrored representation floating in front of him. Imperfect but passable. "What could be more indulgent," he says in an even tone. "Suitable for a party favour. Further and you will have have to commission the Grand Duchess herself." The blood portrait abruptly dissipates, breaking apart into crimson vapour that disperses into the air.

Nothing is as it once was.

The recalled words ring in your head - curt, yet now you recall the smallest hint of acceptance. Understanding, from the one who himself granted you your freedom.

Rebra's lips quirk at the dissipation of the blood image. Her eyes flicker to you as she clasps her hands together.

You have emoted: Abhorash's words at last rouse Galilei from whatever thoughts she had fallen into after the sketch's completion. "Thank you for lending us your power, Progenitor," she says quietly. "I had not seen blood work like that before."

Abhorash's fists clench and unclench in turn; on the left, the movement disturbs the rivulets still coating his palm, spreading about messily against the exposed skin of his hand. "There are many things you have not seen - could not dream of. Such is the assistance I offer your Dominion. To do what you cannot."

More you could inspire us to be, Progenitor.

Rebra's eyes fall to the blood still coating Abhorash's palm. As the rivulets run and spread, she reaches forward instinctively, but she catches herself, clasping her hands together again instead. "Your assistance is much appreciated, Progenitor. There is so much that you know and have experienced." She slowly approaches you, a gentle smile on her face, "And your passion and talent are admirable, your imperial grace."

(Tells): You whisper psychically into Abhorash's mind, "One day, I would hope to see and learn, Progenitor, So that I may dream of more."

You have emoted: Galilei bows her head at the compliment. "Time is on my side, and I shall ever
strive to improve. Your words honour me, Your Imperial Majesty."

Rebra lifts her chin, her nostrils flaring ever so slightly. Her yellow eyes flicker to Abhorash, her expression unreadable.

Abhorash turns a knowing glance to Rebra before flexing his fingers one last time - with that, the blood dries and flakes, crumbling into nothingness. "Is there anything further from either of you?"

Rebra shakes her head, dipping into a curtsey. "Not from myself. Thank you, Progenitor, for allowing us to witness what you might do with the power of the Blood. I look forward to its exhibition at the ball proper."

Abhorash turns an elegant white letter upside down and gives it a shake, emptying its contents into his hands.

You have emoted: Galilei looks to Rebra, then nods at her response. "One simple matter from me, Progenitor."

A glowing sarcophagus talisman, appearing as crystallized blood, finds Abhorash's palms. He holds it for a moment between his fingers before releasing it. "I do hope the young Prince's tastes agree with the rest of your Dominion," he notes, giving the blood-filled talisman a little shake before turning to you. "Yes?"

Rebra breaks into a small smile as she watches Abhorash retrieve the talisman.

You have emoted: "What I'd spoken of last Howling." Galilei closes her sketchbook and places it on a nearby table. The charcoal stick remains in her hand, not yet having returned to its home. "Much-needed measurements, though I could simply take them down on paper I have with me."

Bonus: discount Twilight. Thanks, Abhorash.
The contents of the other letter are deposited directly onto a red velvet fainting couch. "I believe those are for you," Abhorash notes evenly to you.

You have emoted: Galilei's mouth falls open at the sight. "Oh, Gods."

Here and there flies are already beginning to land on the body of Ardent. It gives off a faint stench which tends to unsettle the stomach. Ardent's visage is twisted in what must have been a painful death.

(Tells): You whisper psychically into Ardent's mind, "Ardent."
(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "Yes dear?"

Rebra opens her mouth but says nothing.

(Tells): You whisper psychically into Ardent's mind, "...The Progenitor has marked *your* corpse as mine."
(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "He's...what?"
(Tells): You whisper psychically into Ardent's mind, "Shook out your package, dumped your decaying body on the sofa along with the bottle of whatever, and tells me he thinks they are for me, unless you had some other purpose in mind."
(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "The body was for him to feed, if he desired. The bottle is yours though. Strawberry vodka."

(Tells): You whisper psychically into Abhorash's mind, "The... body appears to be a gift for you, Progenitor."

You have emoted: Galilei crosses to the quickly bloodied sofa, picking up the bottle to place it beside her sketchbook but not yet touching the Kobold's corpse.

You pick up a Troll-sized bottle.

(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "I could tell him directly if need be."
(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "Pit, I'd tell him in person, but I'm wrapped up in a game of farkle right at the moment."

Abhorash reaches down, seizing the corpse of Ardent by its throat. He regards it coldly, no expression betraying his thoughts. After a moment's consideration, the Progenitor turns and promptly drops the corpse onto the ground. It lands eerily on its feet.

Rebra exclaims softly, "Ah!"

You have emoted: Galilei makes a movement as if to push it upright, but opts to watch for its fall while she tears out an empty page from a book.

He is an undead and reanimated Azudim of Kobold heritage standing five foot seven inches tall. His entire body is covered in a course, pale grey pelt. His eyes sport black sclera with vibrant golden pupils. There is a distinct thicker coat around his throat and up the back of his neck that travels up into a lopsided mohawk. Below the right side of his jaw, along his neck there is a shadowed chunk of fur in the shape of large anchor. He has two pyramid shaped ears atop his head. His digitigrade legs start off with paws similar to a wolf's, moving up into fairly muscular legs. His upper body has been toned moderately from his efforts. Sprouting from his back, above his shoulder blades, is a set of deeply hued feathered wings. The core of the wings is a deep ebony with an altering of colors of deeper blues and hints of purples towards the wingtips, much like flames. His hands, while humanoid in appearance, appear to be donned with claws that he can retract or extend at will. The typical hunch of his heritage seems to have all but disappeared as he stands tall and straight.
It has 1 weeks of usefulness left.
It will decay regardless of where it's stored.
It is loyal to Grand Duchess Galilei Nehekhara.

The reanimated body of Ardent begins to follow you.

You have emoted: And at that, Galilei's expression jumps once more.

(Tells): You whisper psychically into Ardent's mind, "Ardent..."
(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "Yes dear?"
(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "Did I do a bad?"
(Tells): You whisper psychically into Ardent's mind, "He's made a thrall of your body for me. Er."

Rebra turns towards the reanimated body of Ardent, her yellow eyes studying the reanimated corpse.

(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "He...oh that's awesome!"

Rebra dips into a curtsey before Abhorash. "Progenitor, it seems several voices call for my attention. Thank you for yours."

You have emoted: Galilei almost seems to deflate at some unheard conversation, but manages not to laugh. She reaches over to adjust the once-dead Kobold's spectacles before curtseying to Rebra.

Rebra smiles at you.

"Droll," Abhorash notes, utterly deadpan. The corpse lacks the usual preservation, decaying steadily before your eyes. "I will address your requests. You may make more if they come to mind."

Rebra nods her head at Abhorash.

Rebra says, "I will if so."

Rebra opens the door to the southwest.
Rebra leaves to the southwest, riding a war-painted orel.

You have emoted: When Galilei turns back to Abhorash, the flush has not quite left her cheeks yet. "Well. As we were saying?" she asks, holding up neatly-torn page and the charcoal stick. From somewhere she has retrieved a tailor's ruler as well.

(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "I feel honored he would deep to use his blood in such a manner."
(Tells): You whisper psychically into Ardent's mind, "He hasn't preserved you, you know."
(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "Eh, I wouldn't think he would. I'm just glad he hasn't killed me."
(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "One of these days, I'll give him a cookie."
(Tells): You whisper psychically into Ardent's mind, "Gods. I'd thought being a Consanguine means you are over squeamishness. And I would be curious to see that happen, certainly."

"Does my attire offend, Grand Duchess?" Abhorash asks in that same deadpan, otherwise motionless since the raising of the corpse. "Unsuitable for your ball?"

(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "Do you think he'd preserve me and leave me Mortal? I don't."

You have emoted: Galilei appears confused for the briefest moment, no doubt the previous conversation they'd had running through her mind. "How could it offend when it bears nothing offensive to sensibility, Progenitor?"

You say, "It is not quite an *improvement* I offer, moreso... variations to your wardrobe, from a new source."

(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "I wonder if he'd allow me to pay audience."
(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "I'm in the city already, but the guards won't let me just walk in."
(Tells): You whisper psychically into Ardent's mind, "Hmm... asking would be best, I think, in that case. I've finally asked him - well, for the second time - to let me sew something for him."
(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "Shall I ask him directly or would you like to ask on my behalf?"
(Tells): You whisper psychically into Ardent's mind, "One moment." She sounds almost breathless. "Oh, I do hope he'll say yes."
(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "I'll wait."

Abhorash remains motionless. "As you wish," he finally says.

You have emoted: Drawing courage from some memory, no doubt, Galilei approaches. beginning to unfurl the ruler. "Simple measurements. It will not take too long, though if you would prefer to simply write them down and forgo this particular procedure, that is also well and good." She nods at the paper and charcoal stick in her hands.

Abhorash's somewhat incredulous stare conveys all it needs to - this is clearly not a man who measures and tailors his own clothes.

You have emoted: Galilei's entire ears - and cheeks - light up in red now at the response, knowing what she needs to do. Her hands are far cooler and paler than her auricles, and they spread apart with the ruler lengthening between them. "Shoulders; arm, forearm and upper; round the chest and hips; torso; leg, two segments; and the foot. I shall be quick," she reassures.

Abhorash remains obligingly still.

The reanimated body of Ardent, however, shambles forward almost jealously, as if to impede your path.

You have emoted: It's rather interesting how such a placid face could at the same time appear so flabbergasted. "Ard - Ardent. I can't finish this quick if... Erm." Galilei takes a timid step toward Abhorash, but thankfully her hands are practiced. One by one the items she listed are measured and written down, and she steps nimbly around him to take down measurements from behind. Perhaps mindful of the reanimated body of Ardent and how it might move, she opts to handle all items from the chest downward from there.

Gods keep me.

Your Gods are apparently unheedful as the reanimated body of Ardent continues shambling infuriatingly in the background, decaying body just a step too slow to catch you at each juncture.


You have emoted: Galilei veritably scurries around back to the front to ask for a shoe, kneeling down as if to minimize the distance between her and the object - all the less time needed to check the size before her decaying follower has caught up.

Something dangerously close to a smile encroaches upon Abhorash's lips as he watches the drama unfold. "Finished?"

The flush in her face quite a feat for Consanguine, you say to Abhorash, "Size checked. All noted. Yes, yes, quite finished."

Abhorash, Progenitor of the Blood has lost you.
Without further preamble, Abhorash pushes past the reanimated body of Ardent, leaving you with the body.

A chill leaves the air as Progenitor Abhorash Nehekhara departs to the southwest.

Its mission unsuccessful, the reanimated body of Ardent almost appears to be pouting - conveyed through facial features sloughing off with rot.

(Tells): You whisper psychically into Abhorash's mind, "Thank you for your time." Her mind is quite shouting, 'how did this even happen?' "This project I shall treasure."

You have emoted: Left alone with the body, Galilei seems about to take a deep breath, then quickly rethinks that plan. "Good boy," she says weakly, moving to collect her things.

In a huff, the reanimated body of Ardent attempts to cross its arms sulkily - one promptly falls off with a sick squelch, however. It takes the corpse an eternity to pick up the lost limb with its other hand.

(Tells): You whisper psychically into Ardent's mind, "Ardeeeeeeeeeeeent."
(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "Yes dear?"
(Tells): You whisper psychically into Ardent's mind, "Your corpse is sulking. Help."

Once retrieved, the reanimated body of Ardent reattaches the appendage. Backwards.

(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "Thump him and tell him to kobold up. I don't sulk."

You have emoted: Galilei makes a faint noise in her throat. Unheedful of the living Ardent's advice, she gingerly approaches the shambling corpse. "You, er, have that on backwards. Let me?"

(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "He also said no, I think. The Progenitor I mean."

Gods. Gods. Gods. I said I'd help.

It's fine. It's just a corpse.

I've fed from plenty before.

(Tells): You whisper psychically into Ardent's mind, "Well. Come see the show, if you've still a mind." Her voice is slightly faint. "Prism in, or whatever it takes."
(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "You know he may kill me right?"
(Tells): You whisper psychically into Ardent's mind, "I retract my statement. Stay."
(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "I have a better idea."

The reanimated body of Ardent's demeanour perks up a bit at the attention. It holds out the wayward arm - which promptly falls out again with an even wetter squelch than before.

(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "I...may have just said you invited me to see the zombie. I apologize in advance."

You have emoted: Attempting to keep her expression patient and civil despite her squeamishness, Galilei moves around to pick up the lost limb, and gingerly, gingerly, pushes the thing into its oozing socket. She seems quite doubtful when she produces a salve-smeared bandage, but ties it carefully around the reanimated body of Ardent nonetheless.

(Tells): You whisper psychically into Ardent's mind, "Well."
(Tells): You whisper psychically into Ardent's mind, "You are nothing if not truthful."

A beam of prismatic light suddenly shoots into the room.

Ardent suddenly appears, having travelled down the beam of prismatic light.

You say to the reanimated body of Ardent, "Good... boy."

Ardent ponders the reanimated body of Ardent's profile, deep in consideration.

You have emoted: Galilei gives the silent bloodslaves about the area a commiserating look.

(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "It seems the Progenitor has left."

Limb now properly reattached, the reanimated body of Ardent promptly and conspicuously inserts itself between you and Ardent.

You have emoted: Galilei stares helplessly at the living Ardent. "Oh, no," is her helpful comment.

Not yet groaning, you say, "And I was about to get a nap soon."

Ardent tilts his head at the reanimated body of Ardent, eyeing it carefully. "You may be of my body, but I promise you. I would find a way to slaughter Divine to get to that woman behind you," he remarks in a casual tone but puts his hands up. "I however do not wish to fight if it can be avoided. I am here as a guest and that is all."

You say, "You'll both be guests in my territory soon enough, and you'll behave."

A fragrant studio.
A softer, floral scent takes over the chamber here, and the high-reaching ceiling gives way from white to violet-tinged indigo that emulates a field of painted stars. Delicate sconces line the walls; gentle as the spring sun when lit, their glow brings out the subtle glitter and the unending, graceful lines embedded within the quartz covering. The wall-facet bearing the fireplace rises up at an angle by the far end of the room, intending for the fire's warmth to reach a marble dais that bears a bed between two slim end tables - all guarded by gossamer curtains descending from an indent in the ceiling. Tidy as the place is, the dweller has still left her mark here in the leftover piece of sheet music upon the desk, in the sketchbook and charcoal sticks spread beside it, in the mannequins in various states of dress behind a screen, and as always, the collection of small and translucent things. A wide decadent tub stands here. Resting on the ground is a cube-shaped silver sigil. A snowy white bed waits upon its dais, sculpted obsidian branches spread. A small bowl decoration of elegant floating candles has been placed here. A sigil in the shape of a small, rectangular monolith is on the ground. A small paper frog hyalincuru has claimed its space at the desk.
You see a single exit leading south.

You have emoted: Galilei does not bother to change and throws herself on her bed, slippers slipping down the dais' steps.

You lie down on a raised bed of wintry boughs.

Ardent steps over and gently tosses the covers over you before stepping back and offering you space so you may nap.

You have emoted: Still curled up upon it, Galilei warns, "You boys play nice. Civil conversation. And, Ardent, if... ardent's arm, or leg, or anything falls off, do be nice and help him?"

You say, "Bandages with salve seem to work."

Ardent says, "Of course d- Grand Duchess."

(Tells): Ardent's psychic whisper trails through your mind, "Manners are going to be hard."

You have emoted: Galilei nods imperiously, the effect ruined somewhat with the sudden yawn breaking out upon her face. "I believe in you both," she murmurs before closing her eyes.

Ardent leans back against the wall and stares at the reanimated body of Ardent, a thoughtful expression crossing his face.

The reanimated body of Ardent obediently shambles to the corner to decay quietly and peacefully.
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