Private Tales A Festival of Fun

A private roleplay only for those invited by the first writer

Quacey

Knight-Shepherd of the Lost; Lord of Twin Home
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Two by two,
The Dancing March Begins.
Me and You,
Ignoring all our Sins.


The large fae looked at the words in his journal. A slight frown upon his lips. This one he didn't understand. He had written it but he didn't understand it. It was short. It was cryptic. It wasn't his usual style when it came to poetic words. A puzzle to solve later. Already he could hear the cheers growing louder with excitement. He closed the journal and tucked it away. Then his gaze went to events taking place around him. Another tourney from another Spring Court parlour.

This tourney was being held by the Dancing Oak parlour, and it was a bit different. Usually these tourneys were part festival with foods, drinks, and entertainers everywhere that arena's were not and part fighting competitions with riches and glory aplenty for the victors. Rewards could be had by the entertainers as well for those declared the best by the crowd. All in all a place where only victory and defeat existed guised in a suit of festive colors.

But this one was special. Some tournaments existed, but the arenas were mostly being held for duels. The victor stayed and the loser left. It was a game of gaining the most wins in a row before you inevitably lost to your own fatigue. Those who lost could not compete again until the one they lost to had lost themselves. The reward was purely glory and whatever coin bet when you won by the gamblers in the crowd.

The entertainers were more focused on making as many people wish to sing and dance along as they could or keep the largest crowd enthralled by shows of theater and stories told. Each coin a vote for the best with no limit on how many votes one could make. The winner being the one who had the most coin and their reward the very same coin and perhaps their name passing many a lip.

Quacey personally was finding this setup better. War wasn't a tournament. You fought till you or your enemies could no longer. There was no breaks to repair and recover between. A true artist and entertainer never needed to be declared the best. Only the joy it brought to them and those around them. A lesson the Spring Court could use as competition and the strive to rise as high as possible being the only purpose and goal.

That was why Quacey was here instead of back home with his kids. His duty on making sure his Court wasn't rotting but growing from within. So he found himself standing and watching the current winner of the arena quickly gaining their fourth win while a bard sang a high energy song with their drum as passersby began to stop in awe then dance away.
 
Feldspear ambled through the crowds, his skeletal naga valet keeping pace just behind with his belongings, including a pair of dueling swords he had purchased just this evening. In point of fact, they were for the creature, as the Duanann himself didn't care to soil his hands on such frivolities as combat, however it might be dressed up.

As he made his way through, he made it a point to stop and sample the wares of the various food merchants, more akin to spreading rather than spending his money, while keeping an eye out for his sister, who should have been around somewhere. Occasionally he would dip into a pouch and roll some knucklebones into his hand, which he would gaze at for a moment before replacing them, tossing a coin to the nearest merchant or waif, and then continuing on.

His eyes scanned the crowd, always traveling from face to face, as he made his way for the arena. He didn't much care for the duels, but everywhere money changed hands, a deal could be made, and everywhere a deal could be made, there was potential to gain a follower, and every follower was a potential warlock, which would only increase his standing with the Courts.

At the moment, though, he was lost in thought, and almost didn't register the hiss from behind him that signified that his servant had seen something he did not like. That hiss was followed swiftly by a thump as the serpentine butler swept his powerful tail in a blurring arc to deal with the pickpocket who had been about to rob him... Yet another reason to avoid the cities, but not enough of one to keep him away from the festivities.

As the theif learned how to fly, he turned and gave his butler a nod, before continuing along, inexorably towards the arena, the naga now the source of a path that opened around him, like water parting around a large rock.
 
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Malacyte loved to watch the splendour of the duels and the way her body filled with excitement with others around her. The air was almost intoxicating with the sounds of cheers and screams as the arena her and Feldspar made their way once more broke out in an eruption of sound.

She was growing annoyed at her brother's dwadle, casting eager glances at the area where the loud, magically enchanced voice called out their first contestants. After the voice stopped, she threw Feldspear a look, folding her arms across her chest.

"I knew we should have left earlier, dear brother. By the sounds of it, this fight is almost over. What if we can't find spots together?" Malacyte's voice was slightly nagging, but that was normal for her excitement, "Either way- oh!"

The naga flashed its large tail at a pickpocket, sending him sprawling against the wall with a groan. Her eyes narrowed at the miscreant, tsking. Why a thief would even try to pickpocket a Duanaan, she could not be sure and either way, he learned a lesson that she hoped he would take to heart.

Stupid scum..., she thought as she turned to take Feldspear's arm in hers and followed the naga through the crowd.

She breathed deeply as they crossed the precipice of the arena gates and the energy of the crowd filled her body with excitement. Her flowers that dawned her hair blushed pink, along with her high cheeks, and she couldn't help but to gawk at the amount of people in the stands. The crowd was intimidating, though she couldn't help but to feel invigorated by the sheer number of people who came out to watch the duels.

"Well, where to begin..." She released Feldspear's arm and began to make her way to a row of seats that hadn't yet been claimed. Gathering her skirts onto her lap, she sat down and observed the center of the arena where a desicive battle had taken place.
 
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The current champion of the arena with his fourth win safely under his belt pranced about as the crowd cheered. His glory grew as the cheers did. But signs of fatigue were already beginning to show. Quacey noticed it as did some of the more experienced and perceptive onlookers had. Depending on his opponent, the champion may find themselves with only one or perhaps two more wins before he would be dethroned.

Then into the arena stepped a fae in plainer armor than the champion. A short spear and buckler in hand. Quacey watched the way this new comer moved. Experienced. Rested. Focused. The champion was only one of those three currently and could only ever be two of them by this point.

The champion may find themselves dethroned with only four wins to speak of.

Quacey decided it was time to take a seat. He left the arena edge and moved towards the stands. An empty seat in a good spot was soon spotted near a pair of fae and their naga attendant. He approached them.

A slight bow was given their way and a slight tilting downward of his head. "Pardon. Would you be opposed to my joining you for a time?"

It was not as if he needed to ask permission. All fae gathered were free to go where they pleased as they pleased. It was the way of their kind. It was more a matter of being polite and respectful towards the two. Why spark conflict when it was not required?

Malacyte Feldspear
 
Feldspear looked at the new Faerie who had graced them with his presence, rolling his knucklebones absently in his hand before standing down his Naga with a lackadaisical wave.

"By all means, friend, there's plenty of room, though in these matters I should say that I must defer to my sister. She's the watcher of the sport, I'm merely here to make sure she doesn't find any trouble."

He glanced over at Malacyte, already engrossed with the bloodied field, and gave her a small nudge. "Mal? This gentlefae would like to join us, at least for a bit. What say you?"

The knucklebones in his hand stopped rattling abruptly, and he glanced at them with a sharp look before stuffing them in his pouch and waiting for his sister to respond.
 
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Malacyte watched the duels in the battle so intensely, her flowers continued to deepen in their rose-pink color, standing out from her white curly hair. As the newest champion walked out, she somewhat perked up, noting how strong he stood and when compared to his flashy opponent, anyone would have bet against this particular male fae if they simply looked on the surface. Malacyte wet her lips with her tongue as she sat on the edge of her seat.

In a flash, the two men duelled, and Malacyte was enthralled with the newcomer's performance. It was barely 30 seconds and this male fae had already pinned his opponent down and disarmed him. The arena gave mixed reviews with a few cheers ringing out here and there, though it was loud murmuring that filled the air. The newcomer had definitely lost some fae their bets and stirred things up. Malacyte returned to lean back in her chair, twirling a lock of her hair around in her finger as she leaned over to Feldspear as he asked for her verdict.

"Why, yes, of course. Please, make yourself comfortable here." She flashed her steely eyes at the newcomer, seizing him up from boots to head in a quick scan before dipping her head respectfully and a soft smile before she turned back towards the stadium.

The man looked quite interesting to her and she pulled herself up to look somewhat more presentable. "That new fellow is surely one to keep an eye on, yes Feldspear? I wonder which part of the region he comes from. Darn it, I knew I should have paid them more attention. There was quite a funny quarrel going on in that zone over there."

She motioned to a scuffle that was now taking place off to their right, about a section over from their seats. A group of security seemed to be having trouble to handle the situation, and she covered her mouth with her fingers to hide her own smirk. "I wonder what happened."

 
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The male fae was distracted with something in his hand while the female fae was even more so by the action upon the arena field. Both eventually gave their consent for him to join them. A nod was directed their way and then Quacey sat down next to the woman.

From her words he took it that the male's name was Feldspar and from his words that her name was Mal or at least started with it. A sort of introduction of themselves if in an indirect way. It would be rude for him to not offer them an introduction as well as it seemed they were not aware they had already named themselves to him.

"I am Quacey. Pleasure to join you both."

His gaze idly went over to the disturbance. A bad bet sparked a fiery temper it would seem. The hosting parlour was already dealing with the issue so it was nothing more than another part of the entertainment for the crowd. An impromptu comedy sure to entertain as the old champion was forced to leave the arena and the new one raised his spear up to cheer and heckling alike.

"The current winner is from the Spring Court as all those competing today are. Judging by his sigil, he appears to be from hosting parlour, The Dancing Oak. The previous champion was from a nameless parlour and likely looking to be scouted into one."

The typical politics of the Spring Court. Everyone was always seeking advancement. It was the nature of growth after all. Certainly there was many downsides to such a selfish ambition but it also held a pure sort of optimism as individuals strove to be the best they could be. Those who only worried about appearances tended to plateau quickly. Hopefully the nameless champion didn't find their extent to end this day.

"How are you enjoying the festivities?"

Feldspear Malacyte
 
With his sister distracted by the other fight, occurring still within the stands, he turned his attention to the field. and the young gladiator who had so easily bested the reigning champion, rather impressed with what he saw. The Spring Court was certainly putting on an exhibition for this tournament, and was rather glad to be here. With a flick of his mind, he set the naga into guardian mode, ensuring that anyone that harmed his sister would feel the still-venomous fangs or the bite of blades, whichever was closer to hand. The dueling blades, purchased earlier in the evening, slid behind the skeletal back, the scabbards designed for such uses, and the eyes began to glow a steady blue, a severe change from the dead sockets they usually were.

He turned his attention to Quacey, a smile touching his lips. "The bones tell me you're something of a scholar. It's a pleasure to meet you, sir. I would say I'm enjoying the tourney of the day, though I wish it was the melee rather than the dueling circle." He brought a finger to his lips. "I do so like the Spring Court for their festivities, though I suppose I should be more vociferous about the Summer, as to them I do belong." He gave a small laugh. "They tend to be much louder about it, though, and it always leaves me with such a headache."

With that, a crier passed, doling out refreshments for coin, and the Duanann passed over a silver to buy the three of them several meat skewers and a bottle of wine, as well as glasses, with an extra pair of silver pieces and a wink for the pretty maid who actually pushed the cart behind the crier, who blushed and hurried along, almost bumping into the man she was working with. He gave a bit of a shrug at that, and passed out the purchased refreshments, murmuring to Quacey "A gift, freely given," knowing the distrust that could be placed on refreshments, especially in a crowd like this one. He himself settled in to eat, moaning in pleasure as the meats released their juices between his teeth.

The next match began to the roar of the crowd, but he himself turned his attention to the loser's bench, where the former champion sat, apparently awaiting his next turn in the dueling ring. His eyes narrowed thoughtfully, but after a long moment, he shook his head, and focused back on the snack.
 
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As the fight started to break up, she turned to face the male fae beside her, learning his name was Quacey.

"I am Malacyte, and this is my brother Feldspear. Sorry for the inpoliteness, I've haven't been to a festival in ages. Feldspear and I have only recently returned to our homelands last month." She flashed another smile at Quacey and leaned back to watch the center of the arena as Feldspear began to take over the conversation.

She said a quick thank you to both the maid and Feldspear as he passed her the meat skewer. She took the meat skewer gingerly in her hands and began to nibble at it as delicately as one could with such messy food, not wanting to disgrace herself in front of the stranger. The meat was excellently cooked, though that was almost a given. It was a way for the Spring Court to show off and flaunt their exceptional cooks and they did not disappoint. Malacyte did not need to eat but she quite enjoyed the flavours and textures of different food and this meat left her fulfilled and content. The wine was greatly refreshing, it's flowery scent was inviting and sweet. Malacyte quite enjoyed the wine, and glanced over to see if Quacey was enjoying the food, before looking back to the arena to watch the next match.

The victor was faced up against a rather large-built fae, and Malacyte found herself holding her breath. Surely there was no way for the newcomer to best this fight and in her worry, her flowers atop her head began to shade a light blue. The crowd had become silent as they waited for the announcer to begin the duel. The Spring Court kept the tension in the air for an unnerving length of time, but the build up was truly worth it.

"Begin!"

The larger fae was surprisingly quick, heading off to the right and dodging the newcomers face on attack. A sharp eye would have seen that the newcomer hasn't put any true strength into this swing, for when the larger one came up to his side, bringing his axe upwards in a flash, he was ready. A clang of steel on steel shattered the silence, followed by eruptional cheering from the stands. The larger face jumped away from his opponent, but was closely followed by the Dancing Oak champion who gave a flurry of blows from their sword. The strikes were placed strategically. An off balanced foot was all that was needed. The larger fae continued to step backwards, parrying with such a fury until... He stumbled on his foot, and the newcomer found his opening. Three precise slashes to fling his axe off to the side and the battle was over before the larger fae even his the ground.

"That man is unbelievable." Malacyte whispered to herself, though the cheering that filled the stadium at that moment had drowned out any conversation that Feldspear and Quacey might have been having.
 
The arena match had renewed while Feldspar responded. The current champion had decided against his spear when his new opponent entered and had drawn his sword. A choice that seemed odd to Quacey, but the one who understood their skills best was the ones fighting. The match began and turned into much the same affair as the previous fight. The warrior from the Dancing Oak was efficient. Wasted little effort and energy focusing less on creating a show than on winning.

The fae was impressed so far, but his attention was drawn back to the pair he was seated with. An offer of food and drink was made. The wording from the male got a slight eyebrow raised from him but he accepted it all the same. Fae could not lie and his words would bind him to avoid trickery.

As Quacey tried the meat, Malacyte was gushing a bit over the champion in the arena. The mention of homeland and which court the two belonged to had not gone unnoticed as well. But there was no reason to make a fuss over it. The Summer Court was having problems with practically every other court currently. A fault of its leadership rather than its members. He would not punish them for what their Queen did. It was not just nor fair of a thing to do.

"He is competent indeed. I wonder how he would fare in true combat." Quacey turned his attention to Feldspar. "Such as a melee."

The younger knights and warriors of the Spring Court had not known much true combat. Things had been peaceful enough. It was an issue they would need to keep an eye on if any conflict arose. For now the tourneys and competitions were keeping them in practice. But structured duels were not the same as chaotic clashes. Skill mattered little and all were equally capable of dying.

"Do you wish to meet any of the competitors? I could arrange for it to take place."

His attention had drifted back to Malacyte but it was an open question for them both.

Malacyte Feldspear
 
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"Alas, my sister speaks true, we have been overmuch away from the Seelie, scouting the Fall and Winter courts for talent, as well as those few unaligned bastions." He spoke quietly, so as not to attract undue attention. He knew his Queen was out of favor, and that, in large part, because she was too weak at present to actually keep the nobles in line. "However, to try and scout the Spring Court for the Summer would just be folly, especially in such times as these, when true conflict is rare."

He gave a small shrug, and turned to his sister, giving her a slight kiss on the forehead before standing. "I needs must see to something, I shall return. Garamsythe will be here, and you know he shall obey your orders as mine, until such time as I do." With a nod to the naga, he gathered up the rest of his purchases for the day and wandered out of the arena. With his link to the creature, even should she end up wandering off, he could find them easily enough, and it was true, he did have business to attend to.

He made his way towards the center of the city, towards an inn which he frequented in town. In point of fact, it was one he owned, through an intermediary, but he kept that information well under wraps, preferring it not be known exactly how much real estate that he currently had under his thumb.

As he passed the threshold, the publicly known owner of the establishment saw him and gave a slight bow, before reaching behind the counter for a key, which he held until Feldspear reached the counter before sliding it over. It was part of the arrangement, that a room always be ready for himself, with his portion of the earnings inside. He gave a small nod to the innkeep, and took the key, heading upstairs to his room.
 
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Mayacyte rolled her eyes as the topic of court politics came up. She could not be bothered with keeping up to date with such things and her distaste for the courts rules and duties made her drag her brother out and into the world nearly four centuries ago. Only the questionable actions of Summer Court had forced her to return to their homeland in an effort to help their people and courts. Their return was met with some snubbing from other High Fae, but Malacyte could honestly care less. Politics weren't her favourite thing in the world and her aloof personality was detrimental to her reputation more often than not.

As Feldspear stood up she reached out to give his hand a quick squeeze of affection lowering her head and accepting his peck on her forehead, "I'm sure Quacey will keep me entertained, brother."

She began to stroke the naga on his skeletal head, encouraging the beast to lay on her lap like some strange dog. From afar, the white-washed bones almost blended in with her snow-coloured gowns as Garamsythe made it's home on her lap, curling around her.

"I'm curious to know if the fight between this Dancing Oak's champion and last years champion was truly fair. Do you think he's cheating, perhaps?" She tilted her head as she pondered the question, mostly said aloud for her own confirmations. She had a tenancy to talk to herself sometimes and without waiitng for her fellow Fae to respond, she continued on, "Ah, yes. I think I would really enjoy to meet this man, if you can make it happen. Now, how is it that this male keeps going?"

The duels continued to slip by and the newcomer had acquired quite the cheers from the stadium. The commentator also spoke about how quickly this one was rising in standings, and asking if he could ever be stopped. Malacyte stroked the naga absentmindedly, squinting to try and see this up and coming duellist a bit better.

"Ah, so. Qancey, was it? What interesting deeds have you done?" Malacyte asked, hoping to dig a bit into the fellow that had shared her company, turning to watch him curiously.
 
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The pair of fae siblings made for interesting company. Feldspar so far was rather calm and collected while Malacyte was excited and energetic. A mirror of one another that so often happened in life. But it seemed the goals of each was different for this day as he ultimately excused himself and left his sister behind to continue watching the duels that had her so enthralled.

Quacey nodded to the male fae in acknowledgement of his departure and then turned his attention fully onto the sister. Their odd servant remaining behind to guard her. She wouldn't need it. Not right here. Perhaps out amongst the bards, minstrels, and actors where pickpockets loved to roam. But not here. The Dancing Oak parlour knew what the main draw and event was and would guard it jealously.

Questions were asked and he pondered on how to answer a moment.

"I am able to introduce you once he loses. He is not cheating. There is just simply a skill and talent gap at play. Perhaps even a gap in experience. You are able to see it in how he prepared for these fights. Practical armor and proper kit for combat. Focus on preserving his strength while ending fights quickly. The others are half performing a play with their gilded armor and fancy displays of skill. He is simply taking advantage of it as any taking these duels seriously might."

The last question on himself he purposefully left unanswered. It was not as if he was well known even amongst his own court. His actions were never meant to be shared. They were for those involved and for them alone. To speak would be akin to betrayal of trust.

And others were rarely interested in his writings. Truly interested at least.

Feldspear Malacyte
 
Malacyte listened to Quacey, watching this particular duellist with intensity. The roaring of the crowds as the Dancing Oak's champion continued to claim win after win was thrilling, and she found herself cheering along with them at every strike the duellist made. She continued to stroke the naga's head fondly as she watched the duel.

"So, Quacey. Would you be able to defeat this person?" She tilted her head questioningly at the fae beside her, sizing Quacey up, "I'm not much of a fighter myself, unfortunately. Hence, the naga here Feldspear so lovingly left me."
 
The fae held his gaze out upon the dueling arena. The victor was onto his next match. A good series of wins, but he was moving slower. Taking more time for his actions. A sign of preservation. His fatigue had begun and he wished to stall it as much as possible. Recover where and while he could.

Quacey turned his attention back to Malacyte. "Most likely. My physical condition has yet to wane and degrees of experience more than he has. It is always possible to win, but the challenge for him would be great. I do not think he would have what it takes to overcome the trial and prove himself victor of our engagement."

His words were neutral and matter-of-fact in tone. Spoken as a smith might about the quality of a tool by another in his own craft from unknown origins. Truly he was a mountain of a fae compared to the others. The lithe builds common amongst the duanann was not his own. He held a broadness more akin to a giant, although not a single drop of the blood flowed through his veins.... As far as he was aware. His mother had always been dodgy on the subject of his father.

"And how about yourself? Where might your talents lie? Are you more inclined towards entertainment? Scholarly arts? Creation of crafts and goods?"

Malacyte Feldspear