Fable - Ask A nightmare dressed like a daydream

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Midir

The Erlking
Fae Courts
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6
Character Biography
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You are Cordially Invited...


~​

The Heart of the Autumn Court, Laigin, lay deep within the Ixchel Wilds. An area left relatively unscathed by the encroaching hand of mortals in part due to its mystic and wild qualities. People who dared enter the wilds were often not seen again and if they did manage to stumble their way free were never the same again. It took a certain type of being to choose to live here where the Fae still roamed as freely as they once had across the world...

... but tonight a weary traveller would find respite from the wicked meddling's of the fair-folk. For the smallest brownie to the most important Duanann were gathered deep in Autumn's city at the palace of the dark and haunting Erlking for a celebration. The Spring Equinox was fast approaching and it was a symbol of Winter's dwindling power and the rise of Summer. The Game would change. Attackers would become defenders, defenders the aggressors. To mark the occasion it was only right to have a ball. Of course, it should have really been Spring that hosted at this time of year but trouble had been brewing for poor dear Oberon and so the king had sent his pretty dove to the forearm of the Erlking with a request that he host again. Nobody knew why he had agreed, though there must have been inklings, and it only made the whole occasion more fun.

So in they stepped, the nymphs and the sidhe, shoulder to shoulder under the watchful gaze of the Huntman King.

The palace was as wild as the environment around it. Legends said it had been sung into existence over time by the Ancients, others believed it had been planted and the resulting structure a natural wonder. Either way in the spring bloom it was a merry and oddly cheerful sight given its ruler. Carpets of thick green moss cushioned feet and paved the way towards the ballroom. Mushroms, flowers, and animals alike acted as a barrier of kinds to stop nosy fae from leaving the path to explore one of the dark corridors beyond. It was not wise to wonder in this home and those who didn't heed the warning learnt the hard way. Over the small stream on gleaming stones and finally they arrived in the ballroom proper though perhaps an island would be a better description. The river split the room off from the rest of the palace and allowed for water sprites to join in the festivities. Merfolk, nymphs and will-o-wisps flocked to the pretty and mesmerising displays of lights caused by tiny waterfalls and bubbling brooks. Tables seemed to grow from the floor and on top of them food and wine was heaped. The moss that had led the guests there fell away and the dancefloor revealed itself to be a beautiful rock smoothed by time to reveal natures beauty; currents of different precious stones, gems and more gleamed and glittered in the firefly light. Above their heads was the true show stopper. A chandelier of westeria and other wild blooms hung above them in circles of varying levels. Yet, what was truly mesmerising was the subtle way the flowers colours changed, fading from a deep purple, to blue, to green, yellow, pinks and reds.

The Erlking sat upon his throne that stood at the far end of the room against the only wall in the room. It was made of jagged, rough grey slate that looked as though it would slice open someone's palm if they dared to touch it. It was an odd contrast to the forest all around them but a fitting backdrop for the figure who sat upon the dark throne before it.

Midir wore a mask like every other fae who entered the room. The masquerade theme was a private joke for fae wore glamour's - or masks the mortals would call it - nearly every day. Sometimes it was to alter their appearance, other times it was to remove them entirely from sight. The only problem was was that most often than not other fae saw through it. So it seemed fitting that every so often they wore masks that one another could appreciate. Every year they seemed to grow more extravagant; plague doctor masks covered in roses, animals faces frozen in the last few seconds of their life, slender little lacy things made from a spiders web. They amused him. The Erlking's mask was half of a stags skull, coming down to curve along the exact line of his high cheekbones but leaving from his nose down exposed. The creatures great horns rose above his head and were decorated with vines and withering flowers amongst bright, vibrant red ones. The rest of his outfit was all dark Damascus silks to show off the dangerous lines of his body. His blonde hair was loose and flowed freely down his back to pool just at the hollow of his back.

His fingers tapped against the wine glass that he held loosely in one hand.

Boredom was never a good sign.
 
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She moved among the others, her mask for this particular bit of foolishness little more than a curved piece of white porcelain. There were no holes for eyes, though of course she could see clearly enough, just as there was no hole for a mouth. It suited her that she was not even another face in the crowd. For a change, she wore something a touch more sheer than she normally would have, the fabric of her dress only loos enough to obscure the lines of her body, sheer enough to see the outline of her slender, willowy frame without showing anything in detail. It was, of course, as blue as the summer sky. She wore her hair tied at the nape, and she moved through the room like a wraith.

Not an inaccurate comparison, all things considered. Within this room, there were naught but children. The ancient sidhe did not particularly care much bout it, either; her placid disposition was at its best when she was around others that - in theory, at least - understood the importance of the Balance. Surely there were a few of her kindred spirits within this room.

The trouble was - the thing that always got her in trouble, anyway - that these quaint littler Courts had their ways, and their beliefs. Neither seelie nor unseelie, the sorceress had been a wyldfae since very near the beginning, a span of years that stretched so far back into the mists of time that she had no way of measuring it. her time here, in the mortal realm of Arethil, had been long enough that she couldn't even remember arriving here, either.

Despite what her kindred might think of themselves, the environment was splendid by her lights. She had seldom felt entirely comfortable around humans and their ilk. Unfortunately, she had not always felt so comfortable among those that would call themselves her people, either. That was the trouble with being something unique; she did not fit in with her own very well, and many others within this Court and others would have a hard time fitting her into their hierarchies.

Why do I even care, she thought to herself idly. She looked about, but there seemed to be little of interest about just yet. The most striking figure in the room sat on a throne at the only wall in this space, and her lip curled in a smirk that was unseen beneath the mask at that. The presumption of so many to seat themselves on throne and preen as though they were so much better than the rest. Nevermind that thrones crumbled, kingdoms died and passed from memory.

Well. That was a bitter thought.

She went to go find some wine to wash the acrid taste of pathos from her mouth and from her mind.
 

Delun

All Bark and Bite
Member
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9
Character Biography
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Delun was silent as he sat in the corner. Throw pillows about him with a book squarely placed in a stand in the small alcove he had taken hold of. Parties and events were something he did not particularly enjoy, but being second eldest of his clan, and book keeper for the wild hunt had certain expectations placed upon him.

And his presence was one of them.

A lazy half mask adorned his features, his eyes never far gone from the pages before him as he skimmed the ledger he kept so impeccably neat. The color of his mask nearly blending with the pale color of his hair save for the streaks of red and dark grey that adorned the eyes and nose. A separate sheet of paper sat before him, hand holding the sleeve of his robe as he wrote out the name of another soul in need of reminding to the tenuous balance of life around them.

His thoughts, though largely settled in the pages before him, were lingering on a sensation that bordered anger, and ill feeling. He had yet to meet the one responsible for the death of his sibling. Had yet to cast eyes upon the being that had dared to raise a hand against their kind.

His lips were held in a tight laced frown, having not settled yet back to the typical listless way he held himself. Sincerely wishing the brush had instead been that of a cane rod, he settled in to listen to the event surrounding him with muted interest as he kept himself busy.
 

Diyue Rhianni

High Lord of the Winter Court
Fae Courts
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3
Character Biography
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Ah, society! There was nothing quite like a ball to bring the Courts together, and the turning of the seasons always drew a crowd. Normally they would be gathering in the halls of Oberon’s Wild Court, yet for reasons left to circulate in gossip and speculation, it was the Erlking who was relinquishing winter into spring. How mysterious!

An odd occasion, to be sure -- and one she would rather have died than miss.

Diyue came with an entourage expected for a woman of her status. Notable was her protégé from the Eventide (a young sidhe who was showing great promise yet who did not quite have the pipes to surpass her) and a pair of duanann, one from one of the 50 Houses of Underhill and the other journeying all the way from Vhora’s Assembly. On her arm was a cat sith from the Wild Hunt -- Peril, a Hound who had just earned her virtue.

As always, she was clothed in dark colors. Her gown was made of a deep green silk and draped loosely around her figure. It was far more modern than the revival of classic faerie fashions that were currently being popularized in the Winter Court, yet no less fashionable in mixed company such as this. The waist was snug to her shape, but the bust and sleeves fell in loose, billowing swoops of shimmery fabric.

Her mask grew out of her hair, a trail of flowers that grew out of the simple twist of braids and over her temple, bloomed down her forehead and across the bridge of her nose. They crowded around her eyes in clusters of purple and white and yellow. On the right they curved down her jaw and snaked across her neck and shoulder like vines creeping in simple adornment.

She was in her element from the moment she put her foot onto the moss trail to the ballroom. Diyue had made her first round on her partner’s arm in the cheerful company of her entourage to converse with the partygoers. Posturing was necessary in a Court where one was only as powerful as they were renown. She had been to dozens upon dozens of equinox celebrations such as this.

The inner circles of Winter’s Game turned quickly, a wild dervish that would eventually be her demise. It was a good thing she delighted in the danger of ruin and the promise of everything.

But the company of Hounds and lesser Lords was not what she was here for. They bored her. She could rub elbows with her admirers for days in Underhill; there was no art to mingling with one’s inferiors. Instead, she cast her eyes toward the throne.

Diyue leaned in closer to whisper in Peril’s ear and the two politely dismissed themselves from the company of this group and to another. They left the rest of their entourage and moved closer to the throne to strike up a conversation with another High Lord -- one eager to speak to the Eventide Nightingale.

Perfect. She smiled and dipped sweetly to her fan and peer. The night was off to a splendid start.
 

Lorcan

The Autumn Prince
Fae Courts
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28
Character Biography
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Lórcan was, as was customary, fashionably late. He knew he was expected to attend and so in expectation came his natural urge to resist. He'd been dressed hours ago, his dark shirt and suit, embroidered in gold stitched autumn leaves, the tailored fit complimenting his muscular frame and a mask of feathers and leaves made of dark gold to match his eyes. But the longer he had spent pacing in his chambers with his cup bearer struggling to keep up with his demand for wine, the more tousled his hair became, the more addled his mind, and the more his shirt was undone.

He despised these fucking soirées. The pretence he was expected to put up in front of the other courts, the part he was supposed to play and the respect he was implored to pay. He'd been well warned, but that had only pissed him off more, made him more determined to do exactly as he pleased.

The mask did absolutely nothing to hide his broodiness as he entered the room and paused, straightening his jacket but leaving his shirt only half fastened. A hand swept through his dark waves, and he lifted another cup of wine from the tray of a passing server. There were already eyes on him, and he cast a look toward his father as he downed the drink and absently handed the empty vessel to some random before he wandered into the crowd.

They either seemed to part and clear his path, or flock to him. It wasn't long before he had a woman on each arm, each subtly fighting for pride of place against his chest. It suited him fine to ignore the formalities he should have been engaging in, the meeting the greeting, the bowing, the pleasing. Fuck it all. If he was going to be forced to be here then he was going to enjoy what the evening had to offer.

A quiet corner fitted his intentions better, though he found the more secluded of the four already occupied. He grinned down at Delun as his arms snaked around the slender waists of his newly acquired companions, their cheeks rufescent as they clung to him.

"At least try to look like you're enjoying yourself will you?.." he gave a wine-laced breathy laugh at the man.
 

Favashi

I do believe in Faeries, I do, I do
Fae Courts
Messages
34
Character Biography
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Favashi lounged on the edge of the little river with a goblet in one hand and a boring nymph whispering in her other ear. Her expression didn't hide the fact from anyone she would rather be talking to someone of consequence, someone more interesting. Prattling on about the reasons why the Erlking had chosen to host instead of Oberon was inconsequential, the politics of the four greater courts none of her concern. It was this kind of behaviour that was the reason why Favashi had left Winter in the first place and taken up a prominent position in the Dawn Court. Her eyes flickered over to her fearless king now and snorted.

Perhaps he wouldn't be king for long.

Once she had enjoyed following him but now she found herself wondering why exactly she should follow when she could lead. Then, like a change in the wind, such motions left her. The reason she had not wanted to lead was because it didn't afford her the freedom she so desired to move in the world as she did now. It was a position far better suited to a pawn.

Forgetting the nymph entirely Favashi stood and wandered over to the table of food, picking out a sweet erdberry and popping it into her mouth. What an interesting little crowd this had gathered though, this strange spring festival in the heart of autumn. She could feel the chaos, the mischief, the desperation for a fight like a sweet and heavy fog upon her tongue. Oh how she hoped the fragile peace would snap.

A smirk coiled her lips as she took another sip of wine.
 

Vaer Nhimei

High Lord of the Winter Court
Fae Courts
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The towering figure of the Erlking's Penance was a smear of darkness in the middle of the room. His hair swallowed the light of the flowers glowing overhead -- a display at odds with a mask made of mirror pieces. They reflected the light and the vain faces of the other guests back at them while concealing most of his. What could be seen was disinterested.

Another party. Exactly the sort of thing Vaer didn't want to waste his time on, yet here he was nonetheless. Not only had some of the other Hounds heckled him about being long in the tooth, but the reminder that he had skipped the last four spring equinox celebrations spurred him into attendance. His King was hosting, so at least it wasn't going to be Oberon flouncing about the room throwing flower petals and teasing them all about blessings of fertility.

The High Lord had made the rounds as was required of his status, but he was already exasperated by them. Diyue, of all people, had been among the first to greet him, her hand lingering on his arm just too long and drawing the attention of their company. Not the sort of attention he wanted.

So he had stolen away, ignoring conversation as he took refuge at the refreshment table. He wasn't alone there, however. Just below the edge of his mask, the corner of his mouth turned up in amusement and he glanced sidelong at the duanann beside him.

"Favashi." He picked up a plate and piled up a selection from the spread before them. It was a good thing he wasn't hungry; his hand dwarfed the plate. His selection wouldn't even qualify as a snack.

"Fancy seeing you here. The party has been so mild-mannered this evening. You must be bored."
 

Delun

All Bark and Bite
Member
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9
Character Biography
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His quiet little corner was only disturbed by a familiar presence currently, finding himself at the receiving end of Lorcan's attention. It seemed he had company beside him on either side as he finished the final words before setting the brush aside and putting the sleeve back to rights.

A hand slowly reached for tea as he allowed his eyes to wander to the male.

"Interest implies there is something that catches my attention. My presence is merely required and not of great interest. And the attendees are merely here to gossip and play." A small sip interrupted his words before he gazed across the newcomers.

"I will amend my statement seeing as the interesting parties have joined us for the evening." He commented with a somewhat amused tone, looking to Diyue Rhianni before his gaze switched to Favashi.

"Ought to be a lively evening."
 
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Ariel

Winter Court
Fae Courts
Messages
8
Ariel's mood could best be described as "surrendering mirth." There wasn't any particular reason that he should be enjoying himself. Nestled somewhere in between the mid and high tiers of the Winter Court (and that seemed to fluctuate by the hour) he had few people to speak to and even fewer who would be interested in talking to him.

On the other hand: fuck it. He was here, as was everyone by expectation, so why not choose to find whatever enjoyment he could? Delun and Lorcan were engaged in conversation, which by itself promised to be interesting, so with a few gliding steps he found himself leaning against the wall by their formerly exclusive corner. A delicate plate of food was in his hand, and he popped another berry into his mouth.

"...the attendees are merely here to gossip and play."

"You ought to try it," his voice was somewhat muffled by chewing, "I'll start: Lorcan always finds the most beautiful ladies but never offers them a drink." He winked at one of the women on Lorcan's arm, and she scowled at him.

He looked back out across the room with a new upward curve to his lip and saw Favashi speaking to that gloomy hulk of a fairy. "Oh! She got an invitation. Did they send invitations? Are we at war again? Shame, I haven't tried the sweetcakes yet."
 

Fraeya

ensnared
Member
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210
Character Biography
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Fraeya didn't know why Delun would summon her here, of all places.

She assumed it was because he might be drunk.

What did they put in that fae tea anyway?

While she had no doubt the other serpents and wolves of the court knew of her existence, she imagined they quickly forgot about a mortal and Delun usually liked to keep it that way. Out of sight out of mind, for her own safety he'd gently remind her on occasion.

The only one that ever took a gentle tone with her. Well, him and Vaer Nhimei. She'd known both males since she was a tot. Children were rare, valued, and precious among the fae. And Fraeya quickly learned that her circumstance wasn't the first nor the last to occur, being stolen as a baby with a changeling and brought back to live among them. Fraeya still didn't know who'd done it. Her original fae parents had died when she was very young and it had been Delun who took her under his care, or rather, ownership. He wasn't necessarily kind nor cruel but that was just how fae were. Even most tended on the latter part of the scale.

Fraeya hadn't even known she was different growing up until she noticed the ears. The few kids around her hollering insults, tugging on her ears, daring her to swim in the river with the harpies. Trying to get her to dance the revels that would make her feet bleed and her limbs turn to jelly.

She'd never forget what happened about six years ago when she'd met Vaer. The unspoken bond they'd formed. As close to a fae friend that she'd ever had. The secrets they kept about each other. The warnings he'd taught her:

1) Never, EVER, make a bargain
2) Never apologize
3) ALWAYS be polite (working on that)
4) Be specific with wording
5) Give gifts first
6) Always carry something worth gifting
7) Never lie

And so, here she was. Blonde hair tugged over the curve of her ears. A simple mask of leaves with holes for her eyes woven together. She knew they'd all be able to tell she was human. Hazels swept across the space with mounting anxiety mingled with determination as she found that spot of brilliant white hair she'd become accustomed to. Chest deflated a little as she saw he was with others. Deflated further when she saw it was Lorcan. Ugh, what a womanizing fae male prick. She didn't know why they all flocked to him. Okay, maybe she did. He was gorgeous but STILL. Just another puppet in another court used to getting what he wanted, using and discarding along the way.

Someone else was with Delun, someone she'd only heard of in passing, Ariel.

At least it wasn't the viper Favashi. The last time Fraeya saw her, she'd dropped her in the middle of the fire giant's wastelands, hoping Fraeya would die and never make it back.

Mustering up her courage, she made her way to Delun, stopping at his side. A bow of her head as she appeared. "Lord Delun, you summoned me?"
 
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Isiell

Chaos Fury of the Dawn Court
Fae Courts
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7
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Isiell preferred her entrances and exits to be... subtle. That made for a better escape after she'd caused chaos within. She would slip in, stir up trouble, and quietly slip back out right before someone caught on to her presence.

Since a fair amount of the Winter Court promised to be in attendance tonight, though, she doubted she'd be able to truly slip in unnoticed. So, while she didn't bring an entourage, she dressed a little more flamboyantly than usual. Simply to tick off any of the Winter Court that hadn't gotten over her departure yet. Despite her penchant for chaos, there had been expectations people held for her--expectations she'd never asked to be burdened by--that she'd left in the dust, and some of them rather important people and expectations.

But she didn't care.

So tonight, she was embracing both her allegiance to the Dawn Court, and the rising of Summer's power for the season.

Across the upper half of her face was an elaborate mask in the shape of a half-sun, edged with twisting metal spikes. The whole thing was painted in varied shades of yellow and orange, studded with matching gems, and shimmering with gold dust. Her black hair was tightly pinned up on the back of her head so as not to detract from the mask too much, and she'd painted her lips an almost hideous shade of orange and dusted with gold.

Her gown, if it could be called such, was more like a diaphanous slip, leaving very little--if anything--of her form to the imagination. It was made of the same colors as her mask, but there were also streaks of red and gold woven through the fabric, and the length of it barely hit mid-thigh. She wore golden sandals with ties that wrapped around her ankles.

None of it went with her skin tone, but she didn't care. Tonight was about making a statement.

Isiell hadn't seen anyone from the Winter Court in quite some time. She had, after all, been on the verge of being actually thrown out of it before she got fed up with their rules and politics and just... left. Her eyes scanned the attendees. She saw several familiar fae, despite their costumes, and her mind began whirling with possibilities.

She spotted Favashi speaking with Vaer Nhimei, a particular High Lord of the Winter Court that she'd enjoyed tormenting into losing his prized composure, and she met her Dawn Court cohort's gaze with a mischievous grin before swinging her gaze around to the other side of the room.

What she saw there brought a genuine smile across her lips, though it was still tinged with more than a little mischief. She walked over, coming up on silent feet behind the one person in the Winter Court that she actually missed from time to time.

He looked back out across the room with a new upward curve to his lip and saw Favashi speaking to that gloomy hulk of a fairy. "Oh! She got an invitation. Did they send invitations? Are we at war again? Shame, I haven't tried the sweetcakes yet."

"Not at war yet," she purred, teasing her fingers over Ariel's shoulder and up his neck. "But I'll make sure you get some sweetcakes first. I was thinking of starting small tonight, maybe setting the punch on fire. Alcohol burns quite prettily."
 

Midir

The Erlking
Fae Courts
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6
Character Biography
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Tap. Tap.

Courtiers. Trifling subjects.

Tap... Tap.

Loyal hounds. Dangerous rivals and even deadlier allies.

Ta--

His nail scraped across the glass as it missed its beat and his lips turned down in a disapproving frown. His son. Such a disappointment given who his mother was; one of his more promising and favourite bed mates. It was a shame they had only ever been able to conceive the one child between them and it had resulted in that. With a sneer he turned his gaze away and over the rest of the room. In his position as host and as Erlking he would have to be careful who he spoke to. Every conversation, every move would be seen as political in some way or other and he couldn't dote too much attention on one court over the other. So when he saw a figure from his history long before he had even dreamed of holding the title of king he pushed himself off of his throne with a rare smile.

The crowds parted like the red sea before him.

"Seska," as was his way he turned her name into a sensual being that spoke of lush bedding and a moonlit room. "Allow me," he motioned to the glass she had in her hand and picked up the wine jug to fill it. In one smooth gesture he poured the golden liquor.

"I didn't think I'd see you for a few more centuries yet."
 
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478
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All around her, the gossip and the vagaries of Court life played themselves out, and the old fae regarded each through the blank mask, giving neither word nor deed to what she thought about any of them. And that was, as it turned out, just as well; there was a reason why she had been wyld most of her exceedingly long life. An aberration among her kindred, none of whom lived on this land, she did not quite fit in. The Duanann did not claim her, but neither did the sidhe proper; she followed the Balance as well as any other, and practiced the Art, but she was something more primal.

Primal. Closer to the prim. She smiled at her unspoken joke.

Wyld, not of any Court...but that had not stopped her, over the milennia, from throwing her support one way or another when it suited her, when some great calamity threatened, or when the balance of power within the Courts threatened to shift too far to one side or another. It was important to maintain any balance within the world. She had personally seen what happened when it was allowed to fail altogether, and only she and a handful of other souls yet living had survived it.

She cast a glance toward another she knew, more by reputation than by personal acquaintance. Probably just as well that she was masked; the Prince - Lorcan, if she could remember his name - had come in and already the toadies of the court were fawning of him like the ignorant bits of fluff that they were. She raised the glass to her lips, and found it empty; yet more insult to injure her pride this night.

At her name, though, she turned so that the translucent skirts of her dress flared outward. The sultry tone was matched by hers, a smoky, throaty laugh that didn't seem nearly as silly as it should have, given that she had to crane her neck to look to the Erlking.

Offering a faint curtsy - more than she would give, well, anyone else in this place - she grinned. "You know that I am not necessarily welcome everywhere," she said frankly in response to his statement. "The Court - be it this or that or another - like to know where everyone falls, where their proper place is."

She sipped - well, a little more than sipped - at her drink, and laughed. "Too bad for them, then. My place is wherever I will it to be." She was, of course, completely aware of who she was speaking to, but it mattered little to her. She could remember Midir - a different one, a much younger one - and the man before her now was clearly the same, and yet different.

"I had heard of your elevation, Lord King," she said in a gently mocking tone. He had to recall that she held no allegiance to King or Queen, preferring to dole out her obeisance on merit rather than rank. "My congratulations. Be wary of the beautiful vipers that surround you, all in the warning colors and regalia." A pause, a sip. "Of course, one does not rise in the Courts ignorant of that. Pray, forgive my presumption." Her every word was playful, her tone lilting. She cast an eye off towards the Prince again, and sniffed but said nothing. At first. "Perhaps I should visit my kindred more often, instead of wandering the world in solitude."
 

Falerumasa

Parlour- Merrow Strait
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53
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Falerumasa seldom attended events. Kept herself to the strait that fed the outer oceans from Alliria to Elbion. A somewhat tedious position given her occupation, and her parlor. Having seen a few millennia pass before her eyes, her strait became something of a safe haven for the dejected lot of aquatic fae that seemed to gather around her.

Offerings, tributes, and other favors had been exchanged for their residence in her strait. As time passed, the lot of them had maintained a near unanimous consensus that she was the strongest and most fit to lead them. As well as protect them.

Something she begrudgingly agreed to after a number of rules for their behavior had been set out. The strait was and would remain a peaceful place, even with the humans traversing it. Mischief was allowed upon the mortals, but anything more would threaten their safety. Those able to speak the tongue had warned sailors and merchants coming to and fro that safety could only be guaranteed if they paid tribute.

Mostly in the form of precious gems, something that made all those residing in the strait jubilant.

Mortals settled closer and closer as the time passed, establishing a place to study their books and expend their magical aptitude. Something Falerumasa had been wary of initially, until the magical runoff had been found a dramatic boon in exchange for the mortal's proximity. An unknown tithe that was welcomed without acknowledgement.

Untapped possibilities suddenly emerged, the raw magic being funneled and used to boost the sea beds in the strait with which their parlor gained notability from in the coming times. Becoming a staple for the markets of the courts were the medical supplies from the Merrow Strait.

A title that made the old dragon laugh.

Her most recent trip had been to deliver a shipment to the Midnight Market after one of her newest package handlers had nearly thrown her into a tizzy trying to take Winter Court supplies to Summer Court. Having sorted the mess, she wished to be away, leaving her assistant with the task of minding the Merrow Strait until her return.

But the Midnight Market had been humming with the news of a party, and the medical supplier had too curious a mind to not at least take a gander at such an event. A simple mask painted like the midnight sky had been adorned for the affair, covering the majority of her features as the scent of bayberries was about her. A simple but elegant robe of grey and silver draped from her shoulders, paired with an equally plain black choker.

She kept to the sides, mingling with the merfolk and others that kept to the waterways of the party. Her bare feet touched the moss, felt the energy from it before moving to the comfort of water as her eyes smiled through the mask. From head to toe, a soft glimmer shone in the light, as though fresh from swimming.

Her eyes wandered amidst her conversing, taking note of the one whom the crowd seemed to tear itself asunder for. Speaking with someone even the old dragon could recognize if only from mention. Remaining neutral had its benefit, but also came with a price.

A very lonely one at times.
 

Lorcan

The Autumn Prince
Fae Courts
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28
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Lórcan's sharpening grin at Delun's change of heart only faltered as Ariel's voice cut in. His dark eyes rolled beneath his mask of golden leaves and his fingers tightened on the supple waists of each of his female adornments. "I can assure you, these ladies will be very well attended to." he purred by the ear of the one on his right. She tittered, and he returned his tired smirk back to Ariel, unable to hide the disdain from his face, masked or not. "I'll forgive your ill manners in my own home on this occasion, in the spirit of good will."

He followed the man's gaze to Favashi and his brow quirked, his gaze wandering over her form for a moment, a mingled shudder of desire and fear walking up his spine as he regarded the woman. There weren't many who invoked fear in Lórcan, but she managed it without even looking in his direction. As Ariel was joined by mischief herself, the Prince's grin widened with a chuckle to himself.. "Yes, run along and have fun, 'sweetcakes'." he chimed.

It was then he noticed that he'd been under his father's ever frigid and watchful gaze and caught the sneer of antipathy on his stony face. Lórcan's jaw tightened, and he summoned a server with nothing more than a look. The tray presented to him was not of wine, but of dozens of smaller glasses of a golden liquid that smelled of honey and burned on the way down - something far stronger. He took five, one after the other, as the server stood there blinking at him and trying not to look nervous. If he was a prisoner of his father's despondency without having done anything at all, well he might as well get shit-faced and try to enjoy himself. Or, give the old man something to be affronted about.

And there it was. There she was. Delun's mortal girl right on cue. Lórcan had a certain fascination with mortals, much to his father's chagrin. He'd loved one, once, and after falling subject to the full power of his father's wrath over the matter, he had avoided so much as laying eyes upon one again. But now his dark-gold gaze was fixed with a mischievous smirk, and he swallowed down the bitterness he felt. Why should she be alive, allowed to live here when Alana wasn't? Why was Delun, as much as he looked up to the man, allowed to keep her at all? An exception to his father's rule that he had not even granted his own son.

"Excuse me, ladies. I will be back." he shook the two women off with an empty promise, but he was certain they'd wait given how tightly they'd clung and purred like kittens at his whispered advances.

"I'm sure you wouldn't mind me having a dance, would you old man?" he asked Delun quite rhetorically as he held out a hand toward Fraeya, a hand pressed to his half-naked chest as he awaited her acceptance. "Lady Fraeya.." his dark brow quirked. Oh how his father would hate it.
 
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Favashi

I do believe in Faeries, I do, I do
Fae Courts
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34
Character Biography
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"Fancy seeing you here. The party has been so mild-mannered this evening. You must be bored."​

Favashi's lips curled into a delighted smile - something which was not always good for those who wrung it from her. Vaer was one of those rare, delicious exceptions to her finickity mood. For Vaer the delight was always a real thing. Most would think the pair an unlikely friendship - war and order - but in truth they went hand in hand. Over the centuries the pair had had many a bet on which path mortals would choose to take when settling their differences. It would no doubt be some dusty philosophical musing to mortals to learn that Favashi won more times than lost such bets.

"Vaer," she turned towards him in a soft whisper of cloth. Her dress was modest from the front - for her at least - and swept out behind her in a long train of delicate and intricate lace. The back was practically non-existent leaving the expanse of tattoos that seemed to live beneath her skin on full display. Her hair had been carefully arranged up in a series of braids and curls that brushed against her swanlike neck. Flowers as usual were dotted here and there. Her mask in contrast to the beauty of the rest of her ensemble was a vivid blood red and looked more like paint than an actual mask. Sharp lines cut across her features in the bold tribal war style.

"Alas, I have been informed we must be on our best behaviour this evening," the soft pout did nothing to diminish the bright light in her eyes that said her best behaviour was most peoples worst. Her gaze slid to the Erlking's brat and the mortal child with a musical laugh. "I do not think the young Prince got his fathers memo. Care to wager a bet old friend? Will it be War?"
 

Delun

All Bark and Bite
Member
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9
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He was always dumbfounded by his ability to draw the most attention with his attendance. Partly why he enjoyed his position maintaining the records rather than dealing with any direct entities. The hassle of dealing with others had always seemed to wear him thin quickly as others gathered, but among them was the voice of his assistant that drew his most immediate attention.

Mustering up her courage, she made her way to Delun, stopping at his side. A bow of her head as she appeared. "Lord Delun, you summoned me?"

His hand never failed in keeping the cup, amusement crossing his features as he looked her over briefly. His thoughts however did not translate quickly enough as Lorcan swept in before he could express the likely diminutive reason he had summoned her to the gathering.

"I'm sure you wouldn't mind me having a dance, would you old man?" he asked Delun quite rhetorically as he held out a hand toward Fraeya, a hand pressed to his half-naked chest as he awaited her acceptance. "Lady Fraeya.." his dark brow quirked. Oh how his father would hate it.

The tea holding hand waved the pair off. Better to indulge the stripling before he had other ideas as to how best to upset his father while in his proximity. At least from afar he could enjoy the gritting teeth of the freshly crowned King without having to dance around the frivolous excuses needed to belay the anger he would surely feel.

His attention once again shifted, regarding the comment he had initially ignored before indulging in the effort. At least before addressing the two Lorcan had left pining while parading about with a mortal.

"You ought to try it," his voice was somewhat muffled by chewing, "I'll start: Lorcan always finds the most beautiful ladies but never offers them a drink." He winked at one of the women on Lorcan's arm, and she scowled at him.

"Were the weight of words not clung to in much the same way the wind dances betwixt the crags, I might be more free with my opinions, or lack-thereof. As for beauty, that lays with the eyes of the beholder. In that regard, we know the prince has an eye for pretty things that wilt beneath examination, or question beyond apparel." A deliberate cut to the pair that had been left beside his place here in the corner.

The pair of ladies seemed ambivalent to the comment, or it simply flew over their perception as a kestrel might while hunting. In either regard, he addressed Ariel more directly.

"The entertainment is still present, and approaching the board to play it would seem." His meager nod to Vaer Nhimei and Favashi the first indication of interest beyond scathing comments.

"Others seem to have taken a more, tactful approach. Or less if teasing you is their idea of such." His face was still deliberately blank as he sipped more tea, and cutting himself off from the conversation Ariel and Isiell were about to engage in.
 

Vaer Nhimei

High Lord of the Winter Court
Fae Courts
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6
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"Alas, I have been informed we must be on our best behaviour this evening," the soft pout did nothing to diminish the bright light in her eyes that said her best behaviour was most peoples worst. Her gaze slid to the Erlking's brat and the mortal child with a musical laugh. "I do not think the young Prince got his fathers memo. Care to wager a bet old friend? Will it be War?"

Vaer chuckled beneath his mask, amused. He knew her too well to believe it for a moment. The day a creature like Favashi behaved was going to be the end of it all. At some point this evening, she would give in to her nature the way most of them would. He only hoped he was well away from her when it happened.

She remarked on the Erlking's son, however, and Vaer took his time finishing his task of gathering his hors d'oeuvres. Bets with Favashi generally meant him losing, so he was not sure he wanted to turn around at all. Poking a bite-sized berry tart into his mouth, he finally gave in to his curiosity.

Doing so, he nearly choked at the sight of Fraeya being led away from Delun's secluded corner -- now no longer so secluded. The High Lord recovered gracefully, clearing his throat and electing to take a long sip from his wine. He was grateful his mask of mirrors covered most of his face and concealed the better part of his surprise.

"While I delight in our little games, I'm no fool," he finally croaked out with a sidelong glance at his friend. Vaer kept any further remarks on his King's relationship with his son to himself. He was, after all, not the type to gossip. Seeing Fraeya in the middle of it, however, was a point of concern. He rather liked Delun's pet and would prefer not to see her swept up in the constant power struggle between Midir and Lórcan.

So his eyes moved, instead, to other corners of the room in search of trouble brewing. Lord Rhianni was slinking over to make introductions with a dragon. Interesting, but no doubt Court politics; not something Favashi was ever much interested in. The two women Lórcan had left behind hardly looked pleased, but he wasn't about to draw more attention to Fraeya that she was already receiving. Delun's company was a promising source of bets. Vaer lifted his chin and smirked, but before he could remark, Midir stood and parted the crowds to go speak to... Well. Vaer didn't really know who.

With the practiced subtlety of a High Lord, Vaer nodded his head toward the pair and turned back to Favashi. His gold eyes were curious, peering through the spaces between a dozen of her own reflection. Unseen, his brow was raised.

"A fortunate woman who keeps His Majesty's favor,"
he said carefully. Then, shedding some of his proper form, leaned in with a wider smirk. "I've never seen her in my life. You?" He took another bite from his plate.
 

Diyue Rhianni

High Lord of the Winter Court
Fae Courts
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3
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While the company of High Lords was scintillating, Diyue kept the Erlking always in her line of sight. No event was ever a simple dinner party for courtiers. There was always gossip to be picked up and a scandal to be made at affairs as big as these. She never lost sight of her goals, and her eyes and ears were already spreading around the ballroom to gather rumors like bees collecting pollen.

Not that they needed to. The greatest scandal of this evening was happening right in front of them all. The prince was making a show of embarrassing his father. He looked dashingly disheveled, leading a pair of beauties on his arm to annoy his father's favorite Hound. Not the only one to do so, it would appear.

That would unfold on its own, no doubt. So Diyue found a polite exit from her conversation and she and Peril found themselves drifting between groups once again. Who would be next? Her steps were light and lively as she scanned the room.

Her eyes landed on a tall, silvery figure she had not expected and yet was delighted to see. Steering Peril with her, she approached the dragon and inclined her head as appropriate.

"The Protector of the Merrow Strait," she said in greeting to Falerumasa. Diyue's smile was as bright as the flowers adorning her face. "What a surprise. I hope I am not interrupting." She glanced toward the nymphs and merrows in the water of the creek, still smiling and bowing her head once again.
 

Fraeya

ensnared
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210
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She froze as the fae princling drew near. Lorcan. She couldn't afford to feel afraid, they'd likely smell it on her and that was as good as releasing blood in the middle of serpentine-filled waters. Like she'd been doing since she realized she was different from most here, she pushed her fear down and contained it.

A bitter swallow as the fae male, Delun, who was as close to a father as she ever had just waved his hand in aquisence. Not even a grunt, let alone a word of protest.

Ordinary hazel eyes looked to the prince's outstretched hand.

"No," she said curtly.

Then remembered Rule #3) ALWAYS be polite

"Thank you," clipped words through a tense mouth, drawing a very firm line between them. She could smell his sickly-sweet breath from here. Drunk so soon.

"They seem more than willing," a tip of her chin toward any of the number of females in the room. Fingers of one hand lifted, tugging at the green leafs of the mask she wore as if it was armor, then made to turn away from royalty.
 

Wilton Frae

Member
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5
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There was a ball. THERE WAS A BALL! Oh joyous day! Wilton could dance all night. The music. The food. The drama. Clearly it was the place for him to be.

Yet the young fae had a problem. He hadn't been invited. No. He had been just his invitation got lost. Yes. That was what had happened. He kept telling himself this over and over and over and over and over.... What was he on about again? Oh right! His invitation to the ball was lost and he needed to find a way in.

So he dressed up in his fancy clothes that mum had gotten him and carved himself a mask out of some bark off the Other Willow tree. He was all set and ready.

And he wasn't allowed in. No invitation no entry. He even told them his invitation was lost before he could receive it but they didn't believe him. There was even the suggestion he might be a human in disguise trying to learn fae secrets. The audacity of it all!

They refused to allow him in so it looked like he would have to get in on his own. Surely the host would be disheartened to learn he never attended despite being sent an invitation. No, he would be a cruel fiend to allow that to happen. But how to get in?

By using an overcomplicated and convoluted plot that even Wilton wasn't sure how it worked involving moths, pine cones, and a surly porcupine, the young fae managed to sneak his way in disguised as a server.

Once in he switched back into his fancy clothes and mask, then got himself out into the ball.

Oh it was so grand and wonderful! It was everything he hoped for any more! There was food. There was music. There was fae in masks everywhere. Even a bit of drama was beginning to boil in a few places.... But where should he start?

This was a true crisis for Wilton Frae.

Fraeya Diyue Rhianni Vaer Nhimei Delun Favashi Lorcan Falerumasa Seska the Dragonslayer Midir Isiell Ariel
 

Ariel

Winter Court
Fae Courts
Messages
8
Ah, this was that Lorcan, the one who showed up at fancy events feeling sour. He had thought his words rather complimentary at the praise of the man's arm-candy, but remembered that the royal people cracked under the slightest of jests. Their skin was beautiful and brittle as glass.

"I'll forgive your ill manners in my own home on this occasion, in the spirit of good will."

"You are most kind, prince. Do forgive my candor, it's just such a lovely event." He put a hand on his chest, and inclined his head ever so slightly to the very disgruntled man. His mask was a very simple covering around his eyes, but it appeared to be made of a single piece of obsidian. It gave a single flashed reflection of light as he moved.

Isiell's fingers sent a crackling shiver up his neck and he turned to look into the pits of chaos that she called eyes. He betrayed a smile when he recognized her. "Stars above, you're a welcome sight. Underhill is dimmer for your absence." Ariel wasn't a creature of chaos, but he did fully embrace Winter's ideals of passion before duty. Isiell took such things to extremes. It was at least partially admirable and usually entertaining.

He raised his eyebrows at her suggestion of arson, and was about to reply when a most entrancing creature approached.

"Lord Delun, you summoned me?"

"Yes, Delun. From which heavenly plane did you summon this creature?" He gave a curt and shallow bow in her direction, not quite so deep as to be scandalous to the Summer court visitors, but enough to be polite.

Then something extraordinary happened. The poor (and obviously very foolish) girl said "No" to Lorcan. In front of several guests, no less. Ariel blinked, stood up much straiter, and then leaned subtly to Isiell's ear to whisper:

"You may not need to set anything on fire after all..."
 

Isiell

Chaos Fury of the Dawn Court
Fae Courts
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7
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Isiell smirked as she nodded a silent greeting to Lorcan, the Autumn Princeling. They'd not met many times before, but she barely had to look at him to see the complicated web of his life, and the strings she could pull to bring it all crumbling down.

Isiell's fingers sent a crackling shiver up his neck and he turned to look into the pits of chaos that she called eyes. He betrayed a smile when he recognized her. "Stars above, you're a welcome sight. Underhill is dimmer for your absence."

"I missed you too," Isiell smiled, planting a kiss on Ariel's cheek. "I hope you've kept up some amount of mischief in Underhill after my absence."

In either regard, he addressed @Ariel more directly.

"The entertainment is still present, and approaching the board to play it would seem." His meager nod to @Vaer Nhimei and @Favashi the first indication of interest beyond scathing comments.

"Others seem to have taken a more, tactful approach. Or less if teasing you is their idea of such." His face was still deliberately blank as he sipped more tea, and cutting himself off from the conversation @Ariel and @Isiell were about to engage in.

She took note of Delun's interest in Favashi and Vaer, however, tucking it away to see if she might do something with the information later.

As Ariel was joined by mischief herself, the Prince's grin widened with a chuckle to himself.. "Yes, run along and have fun, 'sweetcakes'." he chimed.

When Isiell caught sight of Delun's mortal pet, though, she couldn't help murmuring, "Oh, I don't think we'll be the only ones having fun tonight."

"Yes, Delun. From which heavenly plane did you summon this creature?" He gave a curt and shallow bow in her direction, not quite so deep as to be scandalous to the Summer court visitors, but enough to be polite.

Then something extraordinary happened. The poor (and obviously very foolish) girl said "No" to Lorcan. In front of several guests, no less. Ariel blinked, stood up much straiter, and then leaned subtly to Isiell's ear to whisper:

"You may not need to set anything on fire after all..."

"I have never needed to set anything on fire, darling," she cackled. "You should know better by now. I set things on fire because I can."

Isiell's eyes continued scanning the room, noting tensions and alliances, and how she might play them to her amusement later.

She looped her arm through Ariel's. "Dance with me, and catch me up on the happenings of the Winter Court--not the boring politics, but the rumors and gossip--and then I'll help you catch the mortal girl's eye."

A very strange fae (Wilton Frae) caught her eye, though, near the food. He was unlike any fae she'd ever seen before, and she was suddenly, insatiably curious as to who he was and how she could use him.
 

Falerumasa

Parlour- Merrow Strait
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53
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Falerumasa had not endeavored to attend and garner much attention. It had been presented as a peaceful time between the courts, and all had been invited, a strange thing in the old dragon's eyes.

Though it was nice to see those aquatically inclined outside of the strait had such splendid parties to attend. Her attention had largely been focused on a nymph explaining the current relations between the groups when they had diverted their eyes sidelong rather than maintain their focus on her.

Even in the latest millennia, she had not wanted to become embroiled with the court politics, offering her particular services in exchange to remain neutral, and separate from the intricacies of such.

Though it did seem to find her as she slowly spun to address the newcomer to the conversation. With her attention focused, her eyes went wide for a breath as she bowed before one of her most known customers.
"The Protector of the Merrow Strait," she said in greeting to Falerumasa. Diyue's smile was as bright as the flowers adorning her face. "What a surprise. I hope I am not interrupting." She glanced toward the nymphs and merrows in the water of the creek, still smiling and bowing her head once again.

"High Lord of the Second Order of Winter Court. You are as surprised as I that I am attending. And by no means, Lord Rhianni, are you interrupting." There was a slow cadence to her words, deliberate and measured as a dragon ought to speak. Her eyes smiled behind the mask, and her presence radiated with joy at more pleasant company.

"My dear Evelynn has endeavored to sing praises in your name, and always seemed pleased in her dealings with your vassals. A break seemed well timed after-" She smiled softly while cutting herself off, hands together in front of her and held about her waist. "I came personally to Underhill when a courier came into question of their capabilities. A reprieve of sorts, to clear the mind of frustrations with the young."

"How has the stage been treating you? I hear tell your songs are without fail, impassioned and capable of enabling even stones hearts to feel." If the dragon were embellishing on what she had heard, it was difficult to tell. Her interest seemed genuine, and she had turned to address the lord with full attention though her feet still remained in the water.
 

Midir

The Erlking
Fae Courts
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6
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The rest of the room faded into oblivion now he had chosen who to gift his attention to for the evening. Even his idiot son. This creature was far more interesting. Her history had stretched back into the millennia when he himself were young and still she thrived within this world. He wondered what things those eyes had witness; the kingdoms born, the legends that had died all in a flicker of the barest second for her. She was the Diamond of the event and Midir intended to keep her to himself.

"You are always welcome in my Court," he murmured and brushed a hand against the small of her back to gently guide her out of the way of some lesser fae who wanted to get to the table they were standing in front of. He didn't remove his hand even when the need for it had gone and instead traced a small circle against her flesh with the very edge of his thumb. His facial expression was a different tune however; a slight drawing in of his brows and a down-turning of his lips.

"Our kind are not all that interesting," finally, reluctantly even, his gaze followed hers to where his son was being rejected. "And a lot of them are barely worth the air they breathe," with that dismissal he looked back to her. "Tell me of the far more interesting things beyond the playtime of the fae."