Fae Courts The Delights of the Wild Hunt

Threads open to all members of the Fae Courts group


The Erlking
Character Biography


Can you hear the Fairy Horn?
It echoes o'er the lands
At harvest time
When the moons are very thin.

Can you hear the Fairy Horn?
It travels on the wind.
No birds, no mice, no bubbling brook
Dares disturb the call.

Can you hear the Fairy Horn?
And the braying of the hounds?
The Hunt she calls to those
Unfortunate enough to be on their scrolls

Can you hear the Fairy Horn?
Iron shall not save you
The Hunt she comes for all
Who have flaunted natures chances.

For I can hear the Fairy Horn

I had hoped I was not alone.
The Wild Hunt is oft the subject of the darkest tales told to children on All Hallows Eve. But for the fae these stories are not just cautionary tales. Run by the dark and dangerous Erlking, the Hunt is one of the fragile leashes that keeps this extraordinary race of creatures in line. Courts and alliances do little good for the fae who find themselves in the Hunters Book. Brothers will dance to the sounds of their sisters screams, mothers will laugh at their children's pain, and lovers will renounce ever knowing them as they are torn apart by the Erlkings loyal hounds. As this dark and deadly justice is carried out the remaining fae dance and reveal, drunk on the cocktail of fear, pain, adrenaline and excitement that shrouds all fae kind, and pay thanks to the Hunt that keeps their kind from one again falling into the Dark Times that plagued them in Ages gone. Parties in smaller gatherings of fae would be held across the globe on this special occasion but for anyone who was anyone, the place to be would be the home of the Hunt itself...

The Standing Stones deep within the Ixchel Wilds were fabled to have once been part of the legendary home of some of the first fae. Imbued with a magic few people could still understand it drew the autumn fae on nights where their power was at their height, such as this one. The clearing itself was a symphony of autumnal colours; mustard yellow, scarlet reds and fuchsia pinks. The leaves had begun to fall as winter marched closer turning the grass around the stones into a colourful carpet that was an ode to the courts namesake. The fae had been busy decorating the sacred ground with floating lanterns that flittered like stars above their heads, ribbons strew from the branches with silvery bells that chimed enchanted music reflective of the mood. Tables piled high with the harvests bounty were crammed between the trees and great pitchers of wine were carried by servants who floated amongst the crowd. A large bonfire beneath the stones roared high and cast the fae's shadows into twisted, abominable shapes.

It was the fae themselves that were the real spectacle at the event. Scantly clad if clad at all and painted in a series of symbols they danced and writhed together, feeding those they had called enemies days before, or pulling mortals they had found into drug-induced dances. Every sin was on display and every cardinal desire given into for this one night and the fae did not intend to squander it.

Not when they had survived the Hunt for another year.
Lorcán sat on a throne of tangled roots, his brooding almost palpable. As always, the Autumn Prince had been left with no choice but to be in attendance, though were normally he'd have gotten himself blind drunk and partook in all manner of debauchery as was expected, tonight Lorcán refused drink after drink. He was here, he was shirtless, and he'd reluctantly allowed naked females to paint him, but as soon as he could return home he would. Maeve may have been furious with him, but she was safe, and it was all he cared about.

His dark eyes watched the dancing fae, their painted bodies perfection suffused in the warm, flickering glow of the firelight. He forced his usual menacing grin now and then, trying to at least appear to be enjoying himself and avoid raising any suspicion. Copious amounts of alcohol, females throwing themselves at his feet? It was his sort of party, right? At least that's what they thought.

There was expectation, and he had a part to play. If his father or those working for him suspected that he had a mate.. He growled to himself at the thought and pushed himself from the throne, lifting a cup of wine which he sipped slowly, weaving his way through the moving crowd. Though his gaze drifted from female to female as he passed, his thoughts were of Maeve. He disliked having his mind closed to her, knowing that she was far away was both a comfort and a distress, but he had no wish for her to see the Fae he had to be in his father's court.

He allowed the females to try, but he wasn't bedding any of them tonight, nor any other night. Their hands reached and grasped and clawed at his painted skin, but his touches were chaste in return and he continued on until he found his path blocked by another that he'd entertained before. She wore only a torn, silken skirt, her arms and torso painted in the same manner as his own, and she smiled beautifully as she circled her way around him.

Lorcán said nothing, reminding himself to force that easy grin as he looked down at her, but as her hand settled upon the silver handprint scarred into his chest he gripped her wrist harshly and suddenly, his gaze darkening and a growl rumbling through his chest. The female let out a sharp cry, and he felt her wrist at the point of snapping in his palm. "Not...there." he rumbled at her.

There were eyes on him. His jaw clenched and he let out a long huff as he released her arm and let his knuckles graze her jaw and neck.

"Dance for me.." he smirked.
The hardest lesson Lorcan would ever learn was that to forbid his mate to do something, would be a sure fire way to ensure she did it.

"Stop looking so guilty," she jabbed her elbow into the Puca's ribs causing him to whip his head round and fix her with that cold amber gaze. It melted quickly enough; Raphael seemed incapable of holding any resentment to his brothers mate, but he still looked like a puppy who had eaten the masters good rug and knew he was deserving of a kicking. Maeve rolled her eyes. "Look, I just wanted to see what all the fuss was about. One hour and we'll go, I promise. He won't even know," as long as she avoided going anywhere near him. He had shut off his mind to protect her - which had stung almost as badly as his refusal to take her - but now it might actually work in her favour.

"One hour," the Inquisitor growled though it had no bite. His hand still gripped the hilt of the blade at his side in a feverish hold that turned his knuckles almost white. Mae jabbed him harder this time.

"Why don't you go grab some food, I'll wait right here and watch," to demonstrate her point she sat on one of the wooden seats which had been carved so that the arms looked like two snarling hellhounds. She stroked their oak heads and smiled innocently. It was a hard feat considering what she was wearing, or rather, what she wasn't wearing. Blue paint smeared over the dark blue swirls of stars and turned them into the traditional runes and symbols the other fae sported. Her black corset was cut to the naval and the skirt was barely more than a few inky black feathers. Raphael gave her a bleak look but nodded and set off into the crowd leaving her alone to take in the festivities.

The two sisters in the Prince's service had not been embellishing about the party. Her eyes flickered from one group to the next, watching the dancing, the drinking, the odd games the other fae played. She might have been human once but these were now her kind and even if they did make fear churn in her stomach, she would learn about them anyway she could.
The last time he'd appeared before a significant crowd of his brethren, Nairth had been naught but a disillusioned chamberlain to an aloof King, serving the court of Spring faithfully with his attendance and little else. Few had taken note of the duanann who so actively avoided the raucous activity of his contemporaries, and the few who had seen little of him ever since those festivities. The Wild Hunt was something that he could not afford to miss, however. Not with that was awaiting him, awaiting his court.

Yes... his court. Very soon it would be so.

Still, as the patriarch of the San'Seya walked softly through the leaves of autumn on this rare trip into the depths of the wilds, and as his eyes lay bare to the sin and revelry being enjoyed by those already arrived, flesh, drink and drug, one would wonder what time had done to the duanann. For he who now stepped into the clearing, flanked by several of the Spring's most trusted defenders, was not the Nairth San'Seya that had found such little amusement in his previous outing. This Nairth was different. Something had changed.

"They certainly don't waste their time, do they?" A small smirk played at the lips of the supposed chamberlain, his face alight with the reflection of light off of his painted face. The visage of a golden moth had been carefully crafted to cover his eyes, a glittering mask that seemed to melt into a painted design of sun-soaked flowers and flittering leaves of golden trees. No expense had been spared on his appearance for tonight's event, with his long and wild silver locks straightened and painted that same shimmering golden color, like rays of the sun falling down his back.

And upon his back no longer did he hide the scars that had been carved into his flesh. Bare to all were the long markings upon his flesh, one for each of the young Fae whose lives he'd so thoughtlessly taken, cut into his back by his own hand when he had been lost in grief, and awash with misery. Nairth could no longer run from the fate he'd brought unto the San'Seya, for now, their spirits were relying upon him, looking down upon him from on high with expectation and hope for the future of Spring.

He'd honored them tonight, his last remaining son following Nairth's instructions and transforming his scarred back into a mural of sorts; every scar was a branch of a great tree, beginning at the small of the duanann's back and running up to the nape of his neck. On each branch, their names were written. Viviana, Vellous, Karaita, Lornea and so many others to whom he'd once been a loving father. The branches were long, and many. They spread across his back and wrapped around his chest, names and memories that he'd fled from for so long open to all prying eyes on this night of bountiful harvest. Upon his abdomen, just above his navel, was the symbol of the San'Seya, a sigil in the shape of a diamond that had once been proudly worn by his offspring. The rest of his body was as bare as was typical of the sought-after autumn holiday, although he did wear a thin strip of fabric around his neck that several long braids of leaves hung over his chest from, and an emerald green sash around his waist that somewhat concealed his intimates.

He wondered how many here would recognize the significance of the sash, what it meant, and who it had originally belonged to. Those who did would realize that the rumors of Oberon's imminent ousting were far more than rumor. For what other reason would his chamberlain arrive at the Hunt wearing the sash of the King?

The food that had been prepared smelled and appeared appealing enough, and Nairth was certain he'd end up having to mingle eat before long, out of respect if for no other reason. No, what caught his attention most were the stones themselves. The few times he'd been here, before their massive energies, he'd found himself lost in them. The power they held was so foreign, so far above the heads of any Fae. It served to reinforce Nairth's philosophy that the world of Arethil still held so much power over even the mightiest of their kind. San'Seya walked towards one of the stones, eyes alight with wonder almost immediately, pulled away from the beautiful women and men of his kin as he outstretched a hand.

He felt the palm of his hand press against the stone, but it was not cold as he'd expected. It held a stage warmth to it, as though it radiated with the same life that Nairth thrived on. Sliding his eyes shut, his lips moved softly. "Forgive me for the sins I commit on this night. I cannot afford to be passive any longer." The duanann spoke a silent prayer to the stone before turning back to the massive tables of food, locking his hands behind his back as he walked quietly back to the crowd. None of those whom he was acquainted with had seemed to arrive just yet, or if they had he could not see them. He recognized Lorcan, the Prince, and offered him a respectful bow of his body as he passed.

It would have been odd to see the Prince absent, and yet somehow Nairth got the feeling the Fae man did not wish to be here.

Never one to make a grand entrance or effort to draw attention to herself, Eske had arrived unannounced and, presumably, unnoticed by those who really counted. The High Omnia of the Dusk Court had drifted along the outskirts of the main gathering until she'd found a secluded group of wyldfae to join within a copse of trees dominated by umber and golds. It was there that she implanted herself among the roots, surrounded by fallen leaves, pale ferns, soft mosses, and dozing mushrooms.

Mushrooms that, in accordance with such festivities, needed some making use of.

A cloud billowed and folded out from the group after not-so-very-long, touching the senses with cool, wane giddiness and ease. There at the center of it all the heradryad had made herself comfortable surrounded by her wylde kin, smiling dreamily into the haze of hash and myre. There was giggling and gossiping all around, glasses of wine and mead and brandy passing. Someone mentioned hunger and suddenly: trays of treats disappeared from the food tables of the main area.

Eske languidly reclined with a tall crystal chalice in one hand and a hash pipe in the other, the colors of autumn slowly shifting across her floral, natural self. Though often she maintained a duannan appearance for such grand gatherings, tonight she opted for her true form. What better way to celebrate freedom of wants and desires than to want to be one with nature, such as she was?
Isiell was nearly giddy with excitement. Her parents had never allowed her to attend the Wild Hunt, and she'd laid low for a while after leaving the Winter Court to keep them from dragging her back. But now... now she was coming into her own, at last. She was established in the Dawn Court, and was making friends of her own who were powerful fae in their own rights.

And while as a lunar fae, the autumnal equinox meant her powers were not at their height, the chaos that Wild Hunt stirred up would more than suffice in their stead.

The magic of the Standing Stones fairly called to her, but she didn't approach them quite yet. As she stepped into the clearing, any who laid eyes on her would see that she was... entirely unclad. Not a stitch of clothing or jewelry could be found on her form, and her hair hung loose and free down her back.

But she had black and blue paint swirled across her body and her face, and streaks of her pale flesh were dusted with crushed pearls for shimmer. If anyone asked, she would tell them for the night, she represented the beauty of chaos. It felt... appropriate.

She wandered through the clearing for a while, taking note of where the chaos was. Lorcan was easy to spot right away, but he was... different than when she'd encountered him at the masquerade. While he'd clearly not wanted to be at that party either, Isiell couldn't help but notice that now his aura was changed. She snorted a little. He was dull now.

When her gaze landed on Nairth as he bowed to the Autumn Prince, though, she couldn't help but smile fondly. He was certainly beginning to embrace his changing fate, and the chaos that came with it, and she deftly wove through the crowd until she came to stand near him, her path giving her the opportunity to investigate his chosen garb for the night.

"Welcome, King Nairth," she whispered, letting the air carry her words to just his ears as she drew close and let her fingers dance teasingly along the stretch of skin just above the emerald sash tied around his hips. Then she vanished back into the crowd with a giggle. There would be plenty of time to play with him later.

For now, she had another target, and a few more paces brought her to stand before a stunning redhead who was entirely too overdressed for an event like this. Isiell stood before Maeve, a devious grin spreading across her lips as the other fae petted the carved hellhound head on the arm of her chair.

"You look new," Isiell commented, laughing softly as she looked her over from head to toe in that corset and skirt, eyes widening as she took a deep breath, practically tasting the eddies of chaos gathering around the girl. She stepped closer and held out a hand. "You're a bit overdressed, but it's cute. Care to dance?"
Descending from the ley lines in a breath of smoke and shadow, the black shuck appeared at the edge of the firelight. His dark coat ruffled wistfully in the evening breeze as his form settled into place but there was no sheen, the golden aura of the flames swallowed up by his large silhouette. He was a smudge of ink on the surface of the world, a walking shadow that broke apart the dancing light around him.

The weight of a body after the intangible space between always took a few strides to adjust to, and the tall canine took his time walking forward to survey the revelry. And what revelry the standing stones already housed. Drunk on the moon as it eclipsed over the sun, the fae of the Autumn Court were only just beginning the festivities that would last through the night and into the sunless day.

Good. For once, Vaer was in need of something very strong to dull his senses and company to distract him from his own thoughts. He spotted a few notable figures, a few he would take pains to avoid, and many more who were just nameless faces in the throngs of dancers.

A few steps more and the shuck’s body shifted. Curling away in a pillar of smoke, he reformed as the version of himself that better suited his fellow fae. Tall, broad, and roped with muscle, he was as varied from the other fae in attendance as a rose among lilies. And more apparent in this form was the blood smeared on his face and neck. A shame about the stained clothes, but this was the last place in the world anyone would sneer at his unkempt appearance. This was a party for his kind, for the violent deeds he had just done in the darkness.

-- sweet, hot, and metallic -- was evident in the dark smear on his skin. His was a job well done and his leisure well earned.

An attendant hurried from somewhere, bearing a basin of water and a cloth. He was not the first hound to arrive straight off the Hunt, nor would he be the last. Vaer had the decency to wash the blood away, unlike some of his peers. He stripped and another set of hands appeared from nowhere to take them, leaving him quite exposed.

From between, his conduit appeared. The fair will-o’-the-wisp was overladen with a strip of cloth that could only be considered clothing at a gathering such as this. Vaer relieved it of the gold sash to tie it about his hips and the pale blue wisp settled on his shoulder to take its own measure of the crowd.

“No, I will not,”
Vaer answered a question only he heard. His tongue burned on the edge of a lie, and when he glanced at the wisp, dark beady eyes stared out from its body of flame with an unbearable look of judgement. Vaer swiped his hand and the wisp vanished in a swirl of light around his black fingers.

He had not made it three steps towards the much-needed refreshments before a familiar trio of river nymphs rushed toward him. They were perpetually damp, their hair slicked back from their faces and clinging to their skin -- the only thing they really wore besides the swirls of paint drawing attention to their charms.

“Good evening, Lord Vaer,” Ruelephe chirped coquettishly.
“Was your Hunt successful, Lord Vaer?” Taliophe chimed after.
“Where is your paint, Lord Vaer?” Olaiaphe inquired.

All three smiled knowingly. He knew as well.

A few moments later he was patterned with elegant lines of runes in metallic gold paint that stood out against his charcoal skin like stars on the blanket of the night sky. They followed the curvature of his muscular body and, he noticed, one of the nymphs (or all of them) had thought to include a passage from a piece of poetry that spoke of death in a very colorful, lewd manner. That line dipped below his navel, and the passage was left unfinished where it reached his sash as if its completion was beneath.

It was so clever he couldn’t even be mad at them.

The nymphs giggled and scampered away, releasing him from the obligation of paint and mischief to find another victim. The black shuck was thus free to mingle as he saw fit -- and he did so by making setting a direct path to a very strong drink.
The Hunt always called to the Fae of War.

Favashi might not have been Slaugh but she did enjoy watching and following the wake of bloodshed the Autumn King cleaved through the land. As such, she only arrived to the party a few minutes before the first of the hounds began returning, the sound of the horn still ringing in her ears. Every year it surprised her that she had walked the line of chaos just right that she herself had not ended up on the list. A part of her wanted to push it, to see how far she could go in the hopes of finding her name in those deliciously dark books. What a fight that would be to end her life with. There was just a single problem with her plan, an annoyance that made her stay her hand, and she spied him making his way towards the drinking table with a murderous look that made her want to purr.

Her skin had been painted in golden links that made it appear as though chainmail lay across her bare flesh, and two knife sheaths strapped across her thighs was the only other piece to her outfit. Her hips swayed invitingly as she cut across her friends path, two goblets already in hand. She offered one up to him with a lazy smile.

"Quite the list this year," she mused. The Hunt had stretched on longer than it had for the past few years. "Your master must be in a particularly foul mood this year." Her eyes flickered over the shucks shoulder to the standing stones that were beginning to glow, no doubt announcing his majesty's imminent arrival, before back to her friends dark face. Her lips pursed. She might have enjoyed the amount of blood shed that night but she knew her friend would be struggling. In a rare gesture of care for another being other than herself she brushed her knuckles over his cheek.

"Come, drink with me."
The piercing sound of the Fairy Horn cut through the sound of music as the Standing Stones shimmered. From the ley lines that met within their circle a thin, vertical silvery line appeared in the air and widened to become a doorway from which stepped a stag. Towering as tall as the stones themselves, its pure white form was covered in blood. Splotches dripped from the sharp prongs of its antlers and made spatters over its matted fur. Dark eyes the deepest shade of black swept over the gathering as though it were the most nature sight in the world before the beast shimmered and changed. In its place stood a man. Blood still splattered his form and he casually wiped a droplet that trailed from the corner of his lips. His blonde bordering on white hair flowed loose down his back and when he ran a hand careless through it blood added bright red streaks to it.

He stepped down from the dais and accepted a goblet of wine from a serving fawn knelt on the ground but ignored the towel offered to him, uncaring of his naked state.

As he walked the muscles beneath his skin knitted back into his true form and the blood along his body swirled into a series of patterns and rhymes. Nymphs and lesser fae bowed or curtseyed at he past on his way to the food table though it was only his son that gave him pause. For a moment, Midir cocked his head and merely stared as though trying to see past the facade to the soul beneath. There was something... different. A change. His brows slowly pulled into a frown as he raised his glass casually in a mocking salute, before continuing on to find food.

How odd, his son had not interested him in such a way since the boy was ten.
A mask would have been 'overdressed' to the woman in front of her. Maeve was no prude, her people all bathed together regardless of sex and stripping the reeking blood-coated clothes off yourself before entering a feast hall was considered good manners in comparison to putting your bare arse on the benches within. Even so she felt a blush rising in her cheeks at the woman's utter lack in front of her. The sisters had warned her that people wore very little and they had cast dubious looks between them when she had insisted on wearing the black lace corset and not just paint, but she had hoped that this had been one of those fae things they had been trying to make her bulk at in the hopes she would stay home like Lorcan wanted.

Well if Lorcan was dancing with half dressed women...

Clenching her jaw at the thought she pushed herself to her feet with a brief glance in the direction Raphael had gone. His hulking great dragon wings were lost in the throng which meant she would be out of his sight too. She hadn't said she was going to sit for the hour she was here.

"I'd love to," she slid her hand into the other woman's with a sly curve of her lips. "New to the Autumn Court, yes. My name's Maeve."
A delighted giggle--though perhaps to others it would seem a bit unhinged--escaped Isiell as Maeve blushed after looking at her, her grin broadening as the woman's hand slid into hers.

"Wonderful," Isiell purred, gently tugging Maeve toward her, and reaching up to swipe her thumb gently over the blush on her cheeks.

"New to the Autumn Court, you say?" Isiell asked as they entered the dancing throng, her hips beginning to sway to the beat of the drums as her arm twined around Maeve's waist. The woman was shorter than her, but not awkwardly so. "I am Isiell, of the Dawn Court. Which court did you hail from before?"

Isiell's eyes twinkled with mischief then. "In the Autumn Court, with your looks, you'll catch the eye of the prince sooner or later. Take my word for it and avoid his bed. He's not nearly as skilled as he thinks he is."

Through the crowd, she briefly caught sight of Favashi and Vaer, laughing softly to herself at the way Favashi never quite flirted with the shuck. In a way it reminded Isiell of her relationship with Ariel. When she noticed Midir's arrival, though, she grinned. Her last encounter with him had been rather thrilling. She wouldn't mind seeing where another meeting with him led.


The fae couldn't lie. It was something she had had to grow used to since her transformation and she was still learning how to twist the truth to the point it did what you wanted without burning your tongue. Her isle and people had been ruled over by the Summer Court, her people descendants of a warlock who had signed his descendants lives away. She just hadn't technically been a fae when she had been in that court. Maeve let her arms slide around the other woman's neck in a natural, loose embrace as they swayed. She was trying to remember who exactly the Dawn Court was from the few lessons Lorcan would give her on the subject when the other woman brought him up as a topic of conversation.

Maeve tripped over her own feet.

With wide eyes she scanned the sea of people and noticed where her dancing partners eyes fell. She stiffened beneath her hands and then not so subtly tugged them further away from him. The last thing she needed was for him to scent or see her. Not when what she assumed was his father strode through the party clad in nothing but blood. Her stomach rolled with nerves and a touch of jealousy. Of course, the first person she met at this thing would be a woman her mate had bedded.

"Perhaps it's a good idea to stay out of his sight then," she smiled and her eyes flickered to the other faces around them, curiosity soon smothering her nerves. "Do you know the Autumn Court well then? The people here?"
Nairth had just poured himself a drink, a swirling amber fluid that tasted like the sweetest of nectars, while packing enough of a kick to loosen up even the most devout and unyeilding. Indeed, the San'Seya had embraced who he was, and who he was to become, but that did not mean that it was easy for him.
He would need the false courage that came with fine drink if he were to restrain himself from an early departure on this night. He really didn't care much for the hunt that was to come itself. Of course, there was always the chance that he'd find another reason to remain, just as he had the previous gathering.

He swirls the cup in his hand, his other behind his back as he brings his lips to the rim, taking a long, slow drink of the strong liquid. He rarely partook in drink, but he did revel in it when he allowed himself the privilege. He felt the heady aroma, the sickly sweet taste running straight to his head, warming him like a morning glow. That wasn't all that he felt, however. He also felt the touch of soft fingers playing just above his waistline, a touch he knew all too well.


Her words carried through his ears like a gentle wind, bringing a smile to his face that only grew wider when he turned his head to bear witness to the beauty of her bare flesh, adorned with shimmer and paint, none of it meshing together truly in a wonderful display of harmonious chaos.

"Don't go using that word yet, my dear." He purred quietly, his eyes narrowing in what was almost a playful dare. "Lest I am forced to find other methods of keeping that mouth of yours silent." Isiell had been a catalyst for the change that Nairth was displaying now, the night they'd spent together had allowed the future King to see things in a light that had never been revealed to him before. He owed her much, but the game between them would never end. It was who she was, and who he was becoming.

Alas, she whisked herself away all too soon for further teasing to take place. Nairth wasn't concerned. He found that he'd formed some sort of bond with the woman, though he was unsure of it's nature, and he didn't think it likely they would never meet again. Besides, things were beginning to finally enter full swing; He witnessed High Lord Vaer's arrival, pursued by the company of several coquettish nymphs. No doubt they would be making their way to all of the desirable who lacked attention on this night. Still, having not seen him since their little competition some time ago, he found himself raising his drink towards him, eyes alight with some semblance of joy.

It was who he saw next though, amongst the trees amid a cloud of smoke and surrounded by wyldfae and fine food and drink, that caught his eye most of all. Eske was not here as the High Omnia tonight, the beautiful symbol of life itself enjoying nature's bounty passing through her body was just the same as all of them were, and Nairth would be more than happy to take the opportunity to engage with the mysterious woman without his impending title hampering his temperament.

"Eske, It is a pleasure to be reunited once more so soon." The bare feet of the San'Seya padded softly in the grass as he emerged through the thick cloud of smoke, although it seemed to embrace his mostly nude form as he bowed lowly towards his acquaintance and her friends. "You look beautiful tonight, all of you. Might I join you for a drink?" He could feel the Erlking's presence now, a pressure in the air. Nairth did not think highly of his methods, or of what was to come very soon, the true reason for this celebration. A distraction would be welcome.

Eske Isiell
Lorcán had never loathed the touch of a female as much as he did right now. The pretty blonde circled around him, her fingertips trailing over his stomach and back and he tried not to look as tense as he felt. The sound of the horn however made that a far more difficult task, and his dark gaze shifted toward the standing stones to where the stag appeared, bringing with it the strong scent of fresh blood.

Where many around him bowed or dropped to a knee at the arrival of their king, Lorcan remained standing, his spine stiff as he watched his father shift. He was surprised to find the King's gaze on him with a look that was something other than his usual sneer, but this to him was far more chilling. A muscle feathered in his jaw as he stared back, his arm curling around the female's waist and pulling her back against his chest, and the old man's salute was met with a slight twitch of his lips and a subtle nod in acknowledgement.

As he danced, his dark gaze drifted over the usual faces, forcing smirks of acknowledgment to any who caught his eye. The war fury, his father's dogs, Isiell and... He froze, his heart stopping in his chest as his eyes fixed on the woman the chaos fury was dancing with.

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"I can't say I've had the pleasure of ever visiting the Summer Court," Isiell purred as Maeve's arms slipped around her neck. She tugged the woman a little closer, let her painted breasts brush against the corset the female wore. "Despite it's proximity to the Dawn Court."

Isiell didn't miss any of it when Maeve's gaze fell on Lorcan. How could she, when Maeve stumbled as she brought up the prince's past, and the chaos swirled a little more fiercely? She let Maeve turn them away, but she smirked when she felt an answering echo of that chaos from Lorcan's direction. Was it the sight of her, or his father, or perhaps even Maeve? She was eager to find out, but the game was only just beginning.

"Perhaps it's a good idea to stay out of his sight then," she smiled and her eyes flickered to the other faces around them, curiosity soon smothering her nerves. "Do you know the Autumn Court well then? The people here?"

Isiell whirled them a little deeper into the dancing throng, one hand steady at the back of Maeve's waist, and the other wandered up her back and over her bare shoulder, gently tracing the markings on her skin.

"Not incredibly well," she answered. "I've been here once before, and visited with both Lorcan and Midir. But it was brief, and the Hunt is the first reason I've had to come back since."

The music began to shift then. It was wild already, thrumming through the air and the ground in a way that vibrated against one's skin, but now it turned darker. More primal, and the beat of the drums didn't lend themselves well to carrying on a conversation.

"Let's dance a little more," Isiell said, her eyes wide and feral, and her palm curling around the back of Maeve's neck as her thumb swept up the creamy length of it. "And then perhaps a drink..."

Oh, there had been stories of the parties the fae threw in celebration of their odd deities or seasonal celebrations. Warnings of not to accept food or drink and the intoxicating sound of their song. But Maeve had thought those things had stopped applying to her when she had become a fae herself. The wine and food certainly no longer bothered her as it had when she was human. It tasted divine still but it was no longer the explosion of sensory overload that could render her drunk after a sip or full after a bite. But the music... The music still haunted her even in her new body. It seemed to spark something inside that for lack of a better word Mae could only call something primal. She wanted to lose herself in the music. To dance, free, and without a care in the world.

Isiell's touch only made that worse.

She gave the other girl her own, flushed grin as they spun and laughed in delight at her suggestions of continuing for a little while longer. Her own fingers wound into the woman's hair and wonderingly let the silk like threads run through her fingers.

"Tell me about the Dawn Court," she urged and suddenly spun out of the woman's arms until their fingers were barely touching, only to spin back in close. A little more breathlessly she asked her next question. "Raphael told me it's in the desert," of course she had no idea if the other fae knew of Midir's Inquisitor but having arrived with him it could hardly be a secret she knew him.
"Eske, It is a pleasure to be reunited once more so soon."

Those moony green eyes blinked up in glowing wonder at the appearance of one Nairth San'Seya. A brilliant smile broke across Eske's face as if she had just discovered him completely by happenstance beneath a rock, "Hello Chamberlain!"

Giggles and sniggers bubbled through the other wildfae. Some looked upon Nairth drunkenly, doing inappropriate things to his mostly-naked figure with their eyes.

"You look beautiful tonight, all of you. Might I join you for a drink?"

The duanann was readily obliged as several smaller, flight-bound fae swooped in to push him forward into the thicket. He'd find a carved wooden goblet pressed into his hands and the High Omnia smiling pleasantly his way.

"So good of you to join us," Eske said, billowing clouds escaping with every syllable to go traipsing through the air, "I would introduce you to everyone, but you won't remember their names by morning either way. Myr?" A dainty green limb offered him her smoking pipe while she watched him with a wistful expression.

Nairth San'Seya
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He didn't make it there before trouble found him. The woman who stepped between him and his drink was none other than Fury and good friend, Favashi. The shuck stopped abruptly so as not to bump into her and automatically accepted the drink she extended to him.

Modesty was a limited concept among fae, only viable in Court when trying one's best to appear humble to accommodate guests, and in no way applying to the body and one's dress (or lack thereof.) Nevertheless, Vaer's gaze was unswerving. His golden eyes latched onto Favashi's and remained there.

he said by way of greeting. He smiled and his gaze followed hers over his shoulder to the stones, glowing brighter and making the night seem all the darker around them. He nodded, his expression growing more thoughtful.

“It has been a very thorough year,” he agreed.

Bringing his attention back to his friend, he stilled at the touch of her hand. All traces of thought and emotion bled from his face as he looked down at her.

Was he just that easy to read these days, or was she just that good at reading him? He was not sure, but in the strange moment that followed her invitation, Vaer looked away in a rare show of shame, unable to meet her eyes. A High Lord kept his thoughts and feelings close to the vest if he was wise, and Favashi was a dangerous sort to be privy to his mind. Oddly, she was also the only person here he trusted with that insight.

Vaer opened his mouth, but the sound of a horn cut through the thin autumn air, drowning out whatever he might have said. Closing it again and clearing his throat, the placed a hand on the small of Favashi’s back as he turned to face the stones. Midir made his entrance upon the dais, and from between a host of the Sluagh appeared around the stones. The Erlking was, as always, fearsome and magnificent, and Vaer bowed with the others in respect.

The King began to mingle and the shuck straightened. He smiled at his companion and any trace of the vulnerablilty she’d spied before had vanished. Tall, dark, and confident, Vaer raised his goblet in salute.

“To another successful Hunt and an evening of merriment.” He drank deeply.

|| Favashi ||​
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What the fuck was she doing here?!

He had to stop himself staring, he had to act completely normal, he had to get her out of here without a scene. His dark eyes scanned the gathering, catching the sight of Raphael's black, leathery wings and he felt rage, he glanced over his father and then back to Maeve, he felt fear. Lorcan's mind reeled, and he dropped the dark wall he'd built to shield her from this, allowing each overwhelming emotion to cross that bridge they shared in a desperate plea for her to leave. A few hours, that was all he'd needed to show his face and spare himself his father's wrath and he'd have returned to her. Not only had she betrayed him, but so too had his brother who'd brought her here.

A hand sliding up his chest dragged his gaze back to the female writhing in front of him. He growled quietly, about to shove her aside before reminding himself about that scene he hadn't wanted to cause. "Go find a quiet corner and wait for me.." he winked, and the female wasted no time in obeying his command.

Slowly, he wove his way through the crowd, keeping an eye on Maeve as he stopped to return greetings to those who spoke to him, but when finally his path was clear to Raphael he reached a hand to slam down on the puca's shoulder and squeeze with a grip that was meant to hurt.

"Brother.." he smiled, but his gaze was dark and shadowed. He turned the inquisitor so that his gaze might capture the sight of the redhead dancing with the dawn fury, so that he might not have to explain why he was so livid nor speak the order that was on his mind for fear of sparking unwanted attention. His look alone was surely clear enough.

Get her out of here. Now.
Vaer reminded her of the curious little puzzle boxes the mortal children of Amal-Khalt seemed to favour. The aim was to slide tiny slivers of wood in a certain sequence until it unlocked the box and revealed the treasure inside. She had watched some play with the contraptions for hours with a look of such rapture on her face she had been too intrigued not to stay and watch. Now, as one of her oldest friends faces' went through a transformation of expression so quickly she almost missed some, she thought she might understand the delight they had gotten from such a simple thing. Centuries she had known him and every time she thought she was close to unlocking that box it proved to be the case she had another layer of levers to unravel. It was why she watched him and not the Erlking as he bowed and scraped. Such a loyal hound... the thought knotted up her stomach in anger. How was he repaid for his service? Ignored? Treated as nothing more than the other hounds here?

And Vaer rewarded such treatment by pushing down his own emotions and covering them in the pleasant mask of a courtier enjoy the sauries his lord had thrown them.

Favashi lightly fingered the hilt of her blade and considered not for the first time what it would be worth sacrificing to make Dawn her own to show these other Kings what little power they actually deserved. His glass clinking against hers wrenched her eyes and thoughts back to him and she frowned as he flipped his head back and downed the contents. She made sure to plaster one of her lazy smiles back on her face when he glanced back to her though. Idly she waved her fingers over his goblet to refill it and then slid that hand to his waist.

"How about a dance? Or..." she mused as her fingers slid between the bit of fabric he had tied about his waist and his bare skin beneath. "We could find a quiet corner with the Sirens and their mushrooms."
Isiell shivered with delight as Maeve's fingers wound through her hair. That was one thing most males hadn't ever perfected: how to play with a female's hair without pulling at it painfully.

As Maeve asked about the Dawn Court, and spun out of her grasp then back in, Isiell grinned. She knew of Raphael. Her parents stringent education had ensured that she knew of every major player in every court. But she'd never had cause to encounter or meet him.

She pulled Maeve a little closer, let their thighs brush teasingly together as they continued to sway to the beat of the drums.

"It's home," Isiell answered, her voice surprisingly sentimental. "We believe in freedom above all else, even if others sometimes consider it mischief. Or chaos. But it's warm and Leogaire is a sight like you've never seen before. It's hidden by illusions in the depths of the desert, but is filled with lakes and rivers and forests.

"You would fit well in the Dawn Court," Isiell smiled, her eyes wandering over Maeve's features. "With both your appearance and your name. Your name bears a striking resemblance to the founder of the Dawn Court."

She let her eyes wander back to the Autumn Prince then, saw him turning the winged one in their direction, and Isiell smirked, lowering her face close to Maeve's.

"When you get tired of the misogyny of the Autumn Court," she said, pressing a teasing kiss to the corner of Maeve's mouth, "come visit the Dawn Court."
The puca flinched as a heavy hand fell upon his shoulder. There weren't many who would touch him both because he was a lesser fae and because of what he did for the Erlking, and there certainly weren't many who would radiate that level of anger at him. Reluctantly, Raphael turned towards his oldest friend with an expression that suggested he would rather be run through with a red hot poker than be facing the Autumn Prince right then. It was an effort to smooth out his face for those who might be watching.

"Brother," Raphael replied, inclining his head cordially and then offering him the wine he had intended to bring back to Maeve. It was hard not to find the woman Lorcan directed his gaze too and his jaw clenched in a brief flare of anger; she had promised to stay where she was until he got back. In one long gulp he knocked back the wine then set it to the side, but he didn't make an effort to head out to pry Mae from the Fury's grasp. Instead he watched them dance.

"She seems to be having fun."
Nairth bowed to the lovely heradryad, a soft chuckle on his lips as she addressed him by title. Something about being called a Chamberlain in such a state, with everything that had happened lately... it was infinitely amusing to him. "Ah, when we are in such a state of undress and celebration, I must insist you call me by my name, my dear friend." He straightened once more, the emerald sash that hung loosely on his waist sliding down a bit as he raised a hand to the wildfae. "Such hunger, I almost fear seating myself amongst you."

He was teasing of course, but it wasn't a second after the words had left his lips that he felt hands upon his backside, ushering him closer to Eske and her companions with no small amount of gratuitous grabbing of his flesh. A goblet was pushed into his grasp, and he looked back at the winged fae with a sly look upon his face. "Just because I am bound to the earth, do not assume I cannot reach out and catch you as well..." He purred back to them.

Despite his teasing, the attention of the soon to be King was fixated solely on the woman before him. As soon as he'd been ushered into the thicket, lightning bugs had emerged from their hiding spots to surround and explore the San'Seya, lighting his body in small pinpoints as though stars spread across his flesh. The nature around Nairth always seemed to grow excited.

Raising his wooden goblet to Eske, he took a long sip of the nectar within, a soft groan leaving his lips as he felt it's heat settle in his belly. His feet carrying him forward once more, he turned to rest beside Eske, accepting the pipe offered without a word and taking a long drag from it, as if attempting to prolong the high it would offer him. "So generous of you, my friend..." He muttered. He had an offering of his own, should she wish to take it.

Sliding a hand into the small pouch sewn into his sash, he retrieves a small plant, with a large purple flower on the end. "Gerrin root?" The duanann offered her with a knowing smirk. Eske would likely know of the plant, although it was so rare that it was likely that Nairth was the only one who still cultivated them. Gerrin root violets were infamous for causing immense pleasure upon consumption, sending nearly orgasmic waves of ecstasy and arousal through any who felt it upon their tongue.

Most of them had understandably been harvested for this reason, but the San'Seya kept a private garden in his Grove, for occasions such as this one.

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The desert sands had been where Maeve had found her feet taking her after her first fight with Lorcan, it seemed almost poetic that same land was offered to her now after the worst fight yet with her mate. She of course had no intentions of leaving him but those lands still called to her for some reason. Before, Mae had put it down to that restless itch that had come with spending her whole life in one place, but now... Maybe there was something she could learn about herself there or the magic she now found at her command.

A soft, breathy laugh escaped her after the kiss and she glanced up to the Fury with whom she danced with a hint of mischief in those green eyes.

"I will take you up on your invitation," briefly she glanced over the woman's shoulder to where she could make out Lorcan and Raphael beyond before looking back to her new-made friend. "Even if I'm not tired of the place just yet," and he could damn well deal with it. It had not been easy ignoring the waves of anger across the mating bond but whereas Lorcan's fury was a hot inferno, Maeve's was an icy lake. He deserved her ire.

"What about that drink?" she asked as the music began to slow and change to a song of haunting beauty.
Having partaken of the hash for some while now already, Eske luxuriated comfortably in her bed of moss and ferns while the Chamberlain found his place among the wylds and the grove. It was with a dreamy, distant look that her bright green eyes shifted across the blinking of fireflies and the glimmer of her fae companions. Somewhere beyond the treetops above their heads the stars were faintly twinkling in a hazey eve glow.

"Gerrin root?"

Warm jungle greens met delicate purple flower in the upturned palm and widened briefly. She did indeed know exactly what it was and why it had become such a rare specimen. It was something that had, at one point in time, grown within her own grove but much like most other places where it had once bloomed, the fae had seen to over-harvesting it for its curious benefits.

Eske wasn't looking at the violet with wonder for that reason - such things didn't work the same on her in her present form - but as an opportunity to reintroduce it to her home. How delightful! She plucked it with the greatest of care from his hand, as if it were made of glass and the slightest provocation might shatter it, and held it up between delicate, clawed digits to gaze upon it.

The wyldfae about them hushed in their murmurs to watch as the heradryad lifted the tiny flower to her mouth and dropped it in. A profuse ripple of giggles ensued and Eske smirked quietly at the palpable sense of mischief on the air. With the sound of shifting leaves and the gentle whine of trees swaying in the breeze, Eske drew herself to sit up with a hum.

She closed her eyes and shivered.

Across her shoulders and along her arms, the layers of leaves that formed her figure raised to stand on end as if she were flaring her hackles, and from beneath them dozens upon dozens of tiny sprouts furled outwards. Within several hushed breaths, a flush of periwinkle appeared at their tips which then grew brighter, taking on that same lovely shade of purple as they bloomed into fully grown gerrin root violets. The spread of color followed the length of her slender arms, covering her like a shawl. Eske opened her eyes and looked down upon herself, admiring the beautiful bounty.

"Thank you ...Nairth," her warm smile turned up at him, "I have not had these in my grove for a long time. Now I can share them with the Duskirae again."
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