View Full Version : A simple meal among friends [1/13, evening; Christopher, Amelie, Larson, Rosalie]
01-24-2011, 10:48 PM
Rosalie hustled out of her chambers, her feet falling almost silently as she walked. She was probably more excited than she should be; after all, it was only an informal dinner. But that was why she was looking forward to it so much; she had so rarely been invited to things like this. As the forgotten sister growing up, she usually took her meals alone, or in the kitchen with her teachers as company. After leaving Strom, Rex let her out of his sight so rarely that it was impossible to make friends, much less see them unchaperoned. Telling Isadore where she was going was different; that was more telling a friend than reporting in.
Izzy had been happy for her that she was going out and doing something on her own; especially since it involved helping out a friend. That the people she was seeing were mainly Kaedori wasn't too much of an issue, although Izzy knew that Mason would make faces. But tolerance was something the world needed more of, and so Izzy had sent her on with her blessing.
It wasn't far to the room that Amelie had said they should meet in, and so Rosalie slowed her pace. It wouldn't do to be too early, after all. She smoothed her skirts as she walked, glancing down to make sure she was all in order: two skirts, both a deep dusty blue, crisp white chemise, sleeves tight to her arms, and a simple black front-busk corset, the sort that came to an end on her hips to create a long, smooth, fluid line.
Arriving at the appropriate door, she knocked, only now thinking that perhaps she should be nervous, meeting Amelie's big brother.
01-24-2011, 11:10 PM
Christopher had not seen Amelie too much today. Merely dropping in at one point to make sure she was not in need of some medicine for pain, she managed to shout out that they would be joined by some of her friends for dinner and that she would not be late. Well… she was late. Figures seeing as how last he’d seen her, she’d been with Larson. The two probably had lost track of the time. The table was being set now, Anthony bouncing back and forth, waiting for the food to be served. Meanwhile, Christopher just sat in his chair, reading a book patiently while he waited.
“Tony, why don’t you go wash up,” he said, realizing only now that he’d not told his son to do so before.
“Aw, but father…”
“Vivienne. Take tony to go wash up.” She nodded and took his hand, leading him out of the parlor. It was then that the knock at the door came and Christopher groaned, realizing that a Mallory would not knock. That meant it was one of Amelie’s guests… And here she was not ready to greet them. How rude of her…
The servant quickly moved to answer the door and Christopher stood to greet whoever it was politely. He stepped forward, a warm smile ready for her. “One of Amelie’s friends, I take it?” he asked. He’d seen this woman before, but he honestly had no idea who she was. He’d never spoken a word to her at any of the events they’d both attended. “I’m not sure that we have formally been introduced,” he added. “Lord Christopher Mallory. A pleasure. Amelie is… Well, she’s somewhere. Late, to be more specific, but she should be here soon. Please, have a seat. Make yourself comfortable.”
01-25-2011, 12:25 AM
Rosalie had expected to be greeted by Amelie...but instead her eyes, focused on where her friend's face would be, had to travel up quite a distance to meet the eyes of the man who stood in front of her now. It wasn't hard to guess who he was, and she returned his smile, bowing deeply to him. He was handsome, to be sure...that certainly didn't escape notice. But he also had a face that seemed accustomed to smiling, although there was some hardship written in there, as well.
"Good evening, Lord Mallory. I'm Rosalie," she said simply, leaving off any titles. After all, she was not here on official business, and that title had replaced the one she used to hold. "If Amelie is running late, I imagine it's safe to assume that Lord Larson will also be joining us?" She smiled knowingly; with those two together, the world could have fallen down around them before they noticed anything going awry. Taking a seat that faced the door, Rosalie crossed her legs and settled in to wait. "Amelie invited another, Cassandra Rivers, who would be bringing along the other Castell twin I imagine, but I haven't heard from either of them since this afternoon, so I'm not sure if they'll be joining us or not. Those particular twins seem quite good at distracting people."
01-25-2011, 12:37 AM
Rosalie. Oh right… She was a Letalis. Until now, he’d only spoken to one and that had been Regina. That was back in Solbra, but to his mind that had since had to deal with many a tragedy, Solbra seemed as if it had happened years ago. As she took a seat, so too did he, setting his book aside and settling back comfortably into the cushion.
“A safe assumption, and quite correct. I have learned the hard way that it is fruitless to attempt to come between them, so I just tend to sit back and accept that they will be what they are.” And really, he was just happy that Amelie had found such a love that consumed her very self. So few were lucky to have even a fraction of that. “But for the most part, I’ve noticed that Larson is a good man, responsible in some cases. That’s why I know they won’t be much longer. Left up to Amelie though, we could very well be waiting for hours,” he added with a chuckle, his fondness for his sister shining in his eyes. “Rivers? Oh, yes. The Castell’s ward. I do hope she is able to join after everything she’s done for my sister. I have not yet had the chance to formally thank her. But yes, I had heard she became engaged to Lord Lexington. Another good man.” And so few good men could claim the name Castell. “Ah yes… Though I would wager their forms of distraction are not appropriate dinner conversation,” he said, unable to hide his smile.
01-25-2011, 01:46 AM
"Fruitless, and sometimes even dangerous," Rosalie said, chuckling. "I've found it's best to get out of the way when either sets their mind to something...I love them both dearly, but I would be hard pressed to find two more stubborn individuals." She laughed as she said it, affection for both clear in her voice and manner. And really, while some wouldn't say something like that to a girl's brother, he of all people would know the truth of the statement.
It was good to hear Lord Mallory say that Larson was a good man. Rosalie knew it, with a certainty that reached down into her very soul, but the words from this man's lips carried more weight. He could very easily not like Larson, what with all the drama that had elapsed in relation to the eventual coming together of Amelie and Larson. A lesser man would still hate him, begrudge him the trouble he caused in pursuing the woman he loves. A lesser man would not have forgiven him, and would certainly not let him be alone with his little sister before they were married. This fact alone gained Christopher Mallory a good bit of respect in Rosalie's eyes.
"The Castell twins are both good men indeed," she said, agreeing with him. "And both have found good women to match." She hoped the envy she felt toward them didn't seep into her voice. "All of them have done me such favor that I don't think I could ever repay them, no matter how I try." His smile was infectious, and she grinned and nodded. "I would certainly not go against you on such a wager...while I'm sure they have plenty of...shall we say appropriate tools of distraction at their disposal, I would imagine that those are not the ones that're found to be most engaging."
She could see herself easily saying what would perhaps be too much if they stayed on the topic of the Castell twins. But the conversation did put another topic into her mind. "Speaking of engagements, your own wedding day approaches...is it as exciting for the groom, as it is for the bride?"
01-25-2011, 04:05 PM
“Dangerous? Well, there’s a light way of putting it,” he laughed, amazed at how well this woman seemed to actually know Amelie. “Stubborn is another delicate way of putting it. I think only once I have tried to stand in Amelie’s way. That resolve did not last so long… Especially when I realized that she would not stop until she got what she wanted… Even if it killed her. Unfortunately, I cannot say that is a mere exaggeration.” And she hadn’t even made the conscious decision to do that either. It was strange, that, but Christopher was too stubborn himself to liken it to fate. That put too much confidence in fairy tales and invisible, non-present entities.
“Good men normally don’t ask for payment in return for their good deeds. But it speaks to your own character that you should try.” But then he groaned and laughed, remembering against his will the one time he’d walked in on his sister and Larson in the middle of such a distraction. It was a wonder she hadn’t ripped the boy in two when she’d fallen in her surprise. “Yes, it was unfair of me. I normally do not make or agree to wagers that I have any way of losing,” he said. “Well they are young yet. It is good that they are enjoying such things while they can.” Christopher only got to indulge in that type of distraction in his late teenage years… And then he had a son and everything changed. Not that he would ever trade his son for even the slightest taste of the life he had once had. Anthony meant everything to him.
His smile grew as he thought of his wedding to Odelia. It was strange how much time had changed his opinion. At first, a marriage of convenience, one needed to secure the seat to the province. But now he could honestly say that he loved Odelia… That he was exceptionally happy to make her his wife. “It is hard for me to say,” he confessed. “At least not without asking my bride-to-be how excited she is. But she does seem rather excited. Ecstatic even, and a tad impatient. Which is about just where I am sitting… Though out of bias I am tempted to say that I’m more excited than she,” he added with a boyish grin.
01-26-2011, 11:57 AM
Rosalie laughed as Christopher spoke of Amelie's stubborn drive. And yet there was a fondness with which he spoke of her, even as he talked of her defiance of him, which was terribly endearing. It brought her own siblings to mind, although she did not want to think of them now; in a different world, would Rex speak of her with the same fondness? Would he be able to talk of the times when she did not listen to him with the same ease, without bitterness or anger? No. Such a thing was too far removed, too incomprehensible to her. She would always be the troublesome footstool to her family, or at very least she'd always be the one who never fit in.
"That they don't ask for it is all the more reason to give it to them. There are too few good men in this world to let the few that exist go under appreciated." But then his face changed utterly, and she could only imagine what he was remembering. She didn't remember hearing anything about him walking in on the couple, but then, perhaps they wouldn't have told her. There had been a time when she would have heard it from Larson, but now...well, he had other people to talk to, right? It was selfish to think that she'd know everything that happened in their lives. "It is also good that they can enjoy such things while they are young. It's a very rare thing, to be able to choose and act on things like that while youth still reigns." She hoped that didn't sound bitter. It wasn't like she had a right to be, after all. She was a priestess, she could do what and who she pleased. Generally. Mostly. Kind of.
A smile crossed her face as he spoke of his wedding. He was so obviously enamored with his betrothed. The way the world seemed to fall from his shoulders as he spoke of her, the years peeled from his face and he was a younger, more carefree man. He wasn't that old to begin with, but he was one who life had prematurely aged. "It's good to see a man who's looking forward to his wedding with such enthusiasm. Amelie and Cassie are both extremely excited, but the twins seem more overwhelmed by the whole thing. They love their ladies, of course, but it kind of seems like they'd rather the whole ordeal be over with already." Perhaps that was revealing too much, but it was the truth! Especially with Lexington. Not that she blamed him; he wasn't just getting a wife with his wedding, he was getting a title! That would be enough to make any man nervous.
02-01-2011, 06:39 PM
Larson and Amelie had spent the afternoon together, chatting, drawing, staring out the window, and talking of the future which was scary enough. It was around the time of dinner when Larson realized that they were actually running late. He hopped up and held out his hand to Amelie.
"Come love, it's dinner time!" he smiled and waited for her to stand, whisking her out the door the moment he was able to wrap his fingers around hers. Escorting her quickly down the stairs, after shutting the door behind them, he noted that he may have been holding onto her a little to tightly so he moved his hands from hers to her waist. When they hit the bottom of the stairs he twirled her as if they were in a ballroom, dancing.
He was trying to so hard just to get her to smile, truly smile these days. Though it was very hard to try to get her to smile when he was having a hard time doing the same. Larson stopped for a moment and looked Amelie in the eyes. "You know I'd do anything for you? I'd walk five hundred miles, and then five hundred more!" He paused, "Yes, I'd walk one thousand miles and then probably fall down outside your door." He laughed, "You know I hope that's a song someday."
They walked down the remainder of the hallway and entered the dining hall. "Sorry we're late." He said as he held Amelie's hand tightly, escorting her over to her brother and oddly Rosalie was sitting next to him.
02-01-2011, 06:45 PM
"Look what I found, running through the hallways." Cidney announced as she walked into the room, Anthony was pretending to escort her. "Such a perfect little gentlemen, I must say!"
She looked up to see a room filled with smiling faces, one she'd never seen before but she was sitting closer to Christopher then she liked. She would expect and introduction, that was if she could stand the Castell in the room long enough.
He had a very nice face, not as good looking as Christopher of course. He had a nice butt too, but he was from a terrible family and she couldn't even fathom how Amelie could even find room to care for him. He better be hung like a ...
Tony began to tug on her arm, she apparently wasn't paying enough attention to him. Eesh, she hated children but this boy was so beautiful she couldn't help but love him. "Did you wash up?" She asked quietly and received a nod.
02-01-2011, 09:20 PM
Amelie only realized the time when Larson pointed it out. Then she was mortified. The girls were coming to dinner on her invitation and it looked as though she could not be bothered to show up on time. Damn it all. “Thank you,” she said in a harried voice, taking his hand and setting aside her sketches. She was not ashamed for him to see that she’d been sketching him the entire time. She had nothing to hide from her love.
She took the stairs cautiously though quickly. In truth, she never would have taken them so fast were he not holding onto her the way he had. As she neared the bottom steps, her mind began to fill with images she’d rather do without, but luckily, his little spin had served as a clever distraction, and though not expecting it, she twirled expertly under his arm.
That certainly gained him a smile. “Well… Larson, I would do anything for love. But I probably wouldn’t do that,” she teased, tweaking his nose. “Okay… Maybe I would, for you. But I just thought that was a clever song title as well,” she said with laughter. “But you must know, my love… Wherever you go, whatever you do, I will be right here waiting for you.”
Amelie walked through the door and immediately went to Rosalie to embrace her. “I’m sorry, dear. We lost track of the time. I hope my brother was good enough company for you,” she said in a teasing manner.
02-01-2011, 09:27 PM
Christopher was about to say that perhaps it was easier for him to be excited rather than overwhelmed considering this was not his first marriage. But he hadn’t exactly gotten the chance. Before he could speak the door was opening and Larson and Amelie filed in. He was about to make a comment on their tardiness, but again, he was beaten to it before he could open his mouth. That seemed to be happening to him a lot these days.
“Despite you being late to your own dinner party, my dear, Lady Rosalie and I were having quite a nice discussion. Mostly about you, but I shan’t reveal what we were talking about. Mostly because I know it will drive you to the brink of insanity trying to figure it out.” He walked over to her and leaned down to kiss her on top of her head.
Then he turned and looked at the door once more. “Tony…? How did you…? Good gods.” But he could not be mad at his son when he seemed so exuberant. He nodded to Cidney and hurried to where the table had been set even though dinner had not been served. Christopher smiled and walked up to Cidney to greet her properly, his arm going around his shoulder as he turned to look at the other three. “Shall we wait on Lord Lexington and Lady Rivers?”
02-03-2011, 07:19 PM
And suddenly it seemed as though everyone burst in the room at once. Rosalie stood as the door opened, her face breaking into a huge smile as Amelie and Larson entered the room. She wrapped her arms around Amelie and hugged her so that she lifted her off the ground a little, before leaning over to place a very sisterly kiss on Larson's cheek. "Don't worry about it, I know how things are with you two," she said, a twinkle in her eye. She grinned as Christopher sassed his sister, nodding in agreement with him. "He had some very interesting insights about you, my dear, that I was most interested to learn!" Lies, of course, but playing along with Christopher's little game seemed a lot of fun. And, of course, she could tell her the truth later.
Her attention was drawn away once more when a woman and a small child entered the room. The woman was a Mallory, that much was easy to tell at first glance, and her interaction with the child made her think that he was hers at first. But no, she'd remembered hearing that Christopher had a son. This exuberant (and, frankly, adorable) young lad must be him. She smiled at the boy, and bowed lightly to the woman who had come in with him. She would leave the introductions to someone else, though, as was proper.
"Have you heard from Cassie or Lex, either of you?" she asked, turning to Larson and Amelie again. Maybe they'd heard something where she hadn't.
02-04-2011, 05:10 PM
Amelie pouted, looking back and forth between Rosalie and Christopher. “See what I mean. Leave you two in a room long enough and you begin to conspire against me. Are you sure you’re not a secret Mallory, Rosalie… Honestly…” She was mostly blowing hot air, and that she could hardly contain her smile gave it away. But still, she did punch Christopher lightly on the arm, her smile growing when he rubbed the spot and Anthony laughed.
“No… I think she said she would try to come but had to see what Lexington’s plans were. I don’t know beyond that. If something came up or some such. Though, the polite thing would be to let us know… Unless they’re caught up…” And knowing the way the Castell twins operated, it was likely they were caught up. So she just grinned knowingly.
“Larson, do you think Lexington would mind awfully if we started. I know Cassie wouldn’t, but if it would offend your brother, I’d rather we wait.”
02-07-2011, 11:03 PM
Between the peck on the cheek and the fact that he was still being addressed, Larson was a bit shocked. He was still so used to receding back into himself that he had no idea how to react. "Uh, no I'm sure Lexington wouldn't mind if we carried on with the evening."
He watched as Cidney joined the group and swallowed hard. This woman hated him, more then he'd ever been hated in his life. He could feel the animosity rolling off of her in waves, it was almost suffocating. The fact that Christopher didn't actually greet him was getting to be common place, since he almost killed his sister. So Larson just stood and kept his mouth shut, jaw set and shoulders straight.
He had walked into this dinner thinking that he may enjoy himself, but now more then ever, he just wanted to run in the opposite direction. It couldn't be worse that Amelie knew the secret that Rosalie and he shared, but now he was in a room where half the population hated him.
Keeping his eyes and hands to himself he was ready to simply eat and get through this. Amelie wanted him here, so here he would be. He just waited for her to approach the table so he could get her chair for her, otherwise he'd just mind his own business.
02-07-2011, 11:12 PM
Cidney allowed Tony to hide behind her skirts and grinned at Christopher. "Now how can you scold the boy? If he can't be a child at home, then where can he get his energy out?" She could hear him giggling and she couldn't help but laugh herself. "Anthony will you be sitting next to me tonight?"
While Anthony answered her, she looked up to her family, but caught the sight of the Castell man. He was visibly shaken, sweating, he seemed uncomfortable about something. Though she thought that he should be, he almost killed Amelie. Damn fool. He didn't deserve to be here, but if Rosalie was merely Amelie's friend, then she seemed to be quite well accepted. She could deal with the girl for now, as she didn't seem stupid.
"Come Anthony, let's sit." She said quietly.
02-08-2011, 12:58 AM
Larson’s reaction was almost… comical. Or it would have been if he didn’t actually have a reason to be looking so uncomfortable. Perhaps it was rude of him not to outwardly welcome him, but was it not enough that the man got to marry his sister after everything that had happened? Clearly, if Christopher did not like him, this marriage wouldn’t be happening. So, after getting something of a ‘do something’ glare from Amelie who had obviously noticed her love’s predicament, Christopher slapped a smile on his face for Larson.
“Thank you for coming to our dinner, Larson,” he said. “I hope you do not mind if I just call you that. We are to be brothers, after all.” As he followed Anthony and Cidney into the other room where the table was, he said, “I realize that this dinner is probably nothing compared to the grand scale that your lord cousin probably puts on. But enough of that. Talking of your cousin is like discussing politics, and that’s got no place at a dinner table.”
Taking his seat at the head of the table, he looked across at Cidney with a look to behave.
02-10-2011, 09:38 PM
Rosalie just laughed at Amelie's words. "If I'm secretly a Mallory I'd like to know why I got shipped off to Strom when I was a baby!" Truthfully, she did look more like the Mallorys than she did her own family. She and Regina barely shared any resemblance at all...she'd looked more like her cousins than her siblings, but even then not by much. It entertained her to think that way, though; perhaps it had been like in the fables, and she'd been a baby lost at sea, washing up on a distant shore to be adopted, only to find her true family later in life.
She followed everyone into the room with the table, nudging Larson with her shoulder to harass him as though she were his little sister. He was at least mostly with friends...he could at least smile. Or something. Things couldn't be that bad...right?
Something about the woman that was with them seemed...edgy, seemed to be the only way to put it. Rosalie sat beside her anyway; if Lex and Cass weren't coming, then she may as well even out the sides of the table a bit. She smirked a bit at the mention of Larson's favorite person, but felt bad for him at the same time; he already looked like a puppy someone had kicked, and this would probably make it worse. "Grandeur can get quite tiresome, after awhile," she said. "It makes one value simplicity all the more." Of any house of the court, Letalis was probably known for being the most fond of excess. If anyone at this table would know about grand scales, it was probably the girl who had a pet monkey.
02-12-2011, 12:06 AM
Amelie feigned a shrug. “Oh! Christopher, do you not remember that story that Jason used to tell us when we were children to frighten us? About the goblin that sneaks into the windows of babies every night to steal them and switch them out for copies so that the parents wouldn’t know? Maybe that’s what happened, Rosalie. You were stolen away and taken to a far off place! Who knows? Stanger things have happened.”
Christopher chuckled, but he feigned exasperation as well. “Amelie… that’s hardly a happy topic to be having at dinner.”
“Oh, stuff,” she said, waving him off. “It’s just a fun folktale. No harm in sharing the horror stories that shaped our childhood.”
“Yes… but perhaps… later?” he said, slightly nodding his head towards Anthony who had thankfully not been paying any attention to his aunt as the servants had begun bringing out the food.
Amelie looked up, following her brother’s eyes to her cousin. She had not spoken to Cidney much since Solbra. Not after what had happened. Amelie was not quick to forgive. At least not when one had nearly cost her one she held so dear. It had not been up to her cousin to decide who was right for Amelie… And that she had muddled up a simple task, whether it be by accident or deliberately, she was still in a foul mood concerning her.
02-14-2011, 12:25 AM
Cidney grinned at Christopher after receiving the look to behave. When the bustle of the servants began to ring through the room, she looked at Christopher and whispered so only he could hear over the racket. "When did we start letting dogs eat at the table." It wasn't a question, it was Cidney telling Chris that this deal wasn't good. Nor was the one he made to wed her to a knight and out of the family, but that one he already knew was a bit on her bad side.
She looked over to Rosalie, examining her. "You could indeed pass as a Lady of the Mallory house." she was smiling, and for the moment being honest. She didn't have the features of a Letalis, that was for sure. "It's too bad your other friend couldn't join us, Amelie. It would have be wonderful to meet her too." Though she would have delivered the other Castell, and two mutts at the table would just be too much.
She signaled to Anthony to but his napkin in his lap, just as she did. Smiling to the young man, he giggled and sloppily mimicked her.
02-14-2011, 12:34 AM
Larson put on a smile as he'd hustled over behind Amelie and pulled her chair out for her to sit, finally seating himself next to her and across from Rosalie. He could still see Cidney out of the corner of his eye, but he tried his best to ignore her.
He flattened out his napkin and placed it in his lap, then slowly moved his hand over into Amelie's lap. They were sitting close enough that he was sure no one would have noticed. It made him a little more comfortable at the table, at least the woman glaring at him wasn't completely scary now.
"It's wonderful to be invited." He said looking directly at Chris, trying to avoid Cidney's gaze. It was like she was the story of Medusa, that chick that would turn you to stone. Except maybe Cid would give you a gross disease, like warts all in the wrong places. "And Rosalie's right, simple is a whole lot better then what I am used to and usually trying to avoid."
He squeezed Amelie's leg gently and looked quickly back down to his plate as the servants came in and started to place food all around them. This was a very welcome distraction. He was no longer nervous about being at the same table with Amelie and Rosalie, after Amelie learned of his secret time spent with Rosa. Well, it was still awkward, but a whole lot less then the rest of this situation.
He leaned over, when he knew Cidney couldn't hear him, and whispered to Amelie. "I think that woman hates me. I feel like if she stares just a bit harder I'm going to light on fire." It also didn't help that at this exact moment he was trying to quit smoking, so now his normal habits were a bit interrupted and that set him a bit on edge.
02-17-2011, 07:43 PM
“Oh, there’s a question,” he whispered back. “Let us not open that can of worms, cousin.” He sat up and winked at his son who sat up straighter and tried to reach for his goblet. “Cidney, do help him before he spills all over himself,” Christopher said with a fond chuckle. “Tony, don’t reach across the table, son.” One last fond glance and he turned his attention back towards their guests.
“Of course, Larson. You may as well be family now,” he said, knowing that the words would twist in Cidney’s stomach like a virus. It’d be a struggle for her not to gag and that thought only made his smile grow.
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