05.17.3013: All The World's A Stage
Summary: A Lord before his first public performance, a scholar, and a Lady with a history of performing all gather together.
Date: 17 May 2013
Related: None
Elspeth Lucretia Ravat 


The Academ
This is just one of the many quads scattered throughout the Academ — even if it is one of the largest. It is truly nothing more than a stretched of neatly manicured lawn that is divided up with concrete pathways that strategically lead toward little clusters of stone benches. At the center of the quad is a magificent, hectagonal basin with a tall enough rim to allow people to sit and relax before the water. This quad lays before the grand tower of the Imperius Library — a tall, looming spire with a stained-glass crown. There are various buildings also attached to this quad that host a variety of scholarly schools and classrooms.
17 May 3013

Ravat is on the bench under the tree, because surely there is only one such conveniently shaded spot on the entire Quad. It's over there somethere. Behind the fountain with the mermaid. With him on the bench is a book and a PDA, while he holds a small, active projector on the knee of his crossed leg. Presently he is talking into his communicator and his expression alone gives evidence of the exasperated "Yes, mom" type of responses he's uttering - or would like to utter.

The rain has finally passed, which means that even at this time of the morning, students are out enjoying the sun and skipping classes. Elspeth, although still in her robes, is ALSO skipping classes. Maybe. At the very least, she looks happy to be out and about and not followed by a gaggle of students, with a small bag of fruit in one hand. And then there's a fellow sitting under the tree who looks somewhat familiar. Either her previous promise or curiosity provokes her to change course to approach him. She's not trying to sneak up, so there's plenty of time for him to notice before the rustling robes come to a stop nearby.

He does, indeed, see her and waves her over, lest she develop some ambition to use the excuse that he is on the comms to walk past him. "Yes, yes. Look, I've got someone from Academ here now so I must finish. Yes, certainly. By the Six," he breathes after he hangs up. "Ah, my manners!" Ravat stands and extends a hand to the bench. "Please, join me. It is a pleasure to see you again so soon, Professor Adeyemi. You look almost as radiant in the sunlight as you did in the rain."

Elspeth an eyebrow goes up but she doesn't refuse the invitation, after giving him a bow, she settles on the bench with a sweep of her robes. "And /you/ look like someone who is taking my profession in vain to escape from a tedious phone call, my lord. I feel so used," she says, blandly. The compliment just earns a skeptical and amused twitch of her lips. But she does open the small bag and offer him an orange. "Care to join me? I just picked these up from the Ag students - they're doing the most wonderful things with selective breeding of fruit stocks. I don't think anyone's fallen sick in weeks."

"I should, as I did! I feel not a twinge of regret at having used you so. A privilege of my station, I suspect," Ravat grins. "Thank you." He accepts the orange and then turns off the projector, which appears to have been displaying a floor plan of one of the classrooms. "A trying individual. He was doing nothing more than what he is meant to do, but…" He sighs and shrugs. "Trying, nonetheless. The honor of doing a favor falls to me, and promptly everyone is engaged in making the list of 'cons' as imposing as possible."

Elspeth procures an orange of her own, and a tiny knife from one of the robe's pockets to peel it with. "It wouldn't be the first time, my lord." She glances at the projector's image before it winks out of existence, then turns her attention to Ravat. "Dare I ask the substance of the favor, my lord? I /do/ hope that no one has encouraged you to fulfill a favor that would have unfortunate consequences." For /who/, she doesn't say.

Ravat waggles his hand back and forth. "It is threatening to give me a headache, so I am already flirting with the unfortunate consequences. The favor is to speak." He extends his hand toward the Academ at large. "The subject is to be manufacturing principles. Of those of us who have sufficient knowledge of the subject to hold a presentation, my time was deemed to be of low enough value that I was presented with the said honor. So, here I am, at the beginning of the process of figuring out how it all works. To say nothing of putting together materials for a presentation."

Elspeth laughs, the sound more startled than anything. "You're going to be giving a presentation? Ah, I see." She drops the peel from the orange back into the bag, then sections it in neat, efficient movements. "I'll admit that manufacturing is not my primary area of expertise. Or my secondary or tertiary," she adds, with a grin, "but I'm sure you'll do fine, my lord. Have you spoken to students before? On a subject not having to do with card games, I mean."

Ravat shakes his head. "I have not. You will remember the events in the Crescent a few months ago, of course." Without a doubt that is in reference to 'volcano go boom, Khournas factories go boom'. He pulls a kerchief from his sleeve and also begins peeling his orange.

Elspeth grimaces. "Very unfortunate. You'll be speaking on that, then?" She glances at his hands, then reverses the knife and offers it to him, hilt first. "A grim topic, but one that the students would be well served by learning from." She pops a slice of orange into her mouth, chewing while she thinks. After she swallows, she says, "The schematics available don't really give an adequate picture of the lecture halls. Or the equipment we use. Would you care to see one of the classrooms in the flesh, see how it feels? Or will that only speed the tyranny of the headache?"

Ravat laughs. "Heavens, no!" He pinches the bridge of his nose. "Given the subject and the nature of my work," he gives her a significant look, "our public relations people nearly had a collective panic attack when they heard of this. They are having nightmares of media being present and everyone bombarding me with questions related only to that accident. Hence…" He growls under his breath and slaps his comm, refusing an incoming call. "Hence they are calling me every five minutes in an effort to 'prepare' me. Only the way they say it reminds me uncomfortably of how cooks speak of marinating a choice cut of meat." A deep breath. "Now. Yes, please." Ravat smiles at her. "Your company and a tour of one of the halls would be a pleasant distraction."

Elspeth has that kind of confusion that only someone who willfully avoids worrying about political consequences can muster. "Once the facts of the matter are disseminated, surely the matter will be laid to rest." Ahh, the ivory tower. She and Ravat are sitting on a bench under a tree in the quad, eating oranges and talking. Or they were, except that now Elspeth is rising, and putting away her remaining slices of orange into the bag she's carrying. "But if it makes you feel better, I imagine someone could speak to the Provost and have security on hand for anyone who is…rambunctious." She bows with a little bit of a flourish, more than would be strictly necessary, "If you would be so kind as to accompany me, my lord? We'll see about distracting you from the terror or PR folks and public speaking."

"Were that it was so simple," Ravat smiles and shrugs. He gathers his things together - a book, a PDA, and a small projector - before he drops his orange into his kerchief, using it as an improvised bag. "Willingly, my dear professor. I am certain all measures relating to security will be handled. Frankly, the fear they have is that I will prove to be the weakest link and will make an unfortunate statement under the pressure of all the questions. So, as someone who has no experience with such public-facing events, I need to be duly prepared."

Striding through the Academ, Lucretia looks every bit the sorcerous Witch of the Vale that she is known to be, like something out of a 'vid. Black, pointed hat, check. Black dress, check. Tall wooden staff topped with a drake's claw grasping a rather ridiculously large aquamarine, check. And she likely looks a touch out of place, even amongst her Landing sorcery practicing counterparts. Her staff taps against the ground with each step she takes as she seems rather intent upon finding someone in specific. And ah. There she is. Lu wanders closer, regardless of the fact that Elspeth appears to have company. She smiles as she approaches the pair, a nod offered to Ravat before she speaks, "Elspeth darling, how are you? Not interrupting am I? A lunch date, perhaps? And with such a handsome fellow. I was really hoping to add you to the list of people I've discussed my sleeping routine with."

"Take up mathematics," Elspeth suggests. "It's difficult to be controversial in any manner that makes the vids." Her smile makes it clear that she's joking. There might even be a hint of sympathy in there. "You'll do fine, I'm sure." She turns to indicate the classroom building…and there's a witch! Not a duck, but a veritable witch! The scholar's smile is warm and genuine as Lucretia approaches. "Lady Lucretia. A pleasure to—" and then Lucretia continues, and the scholar reaches up to pinch the bridge of her nose, her eyes closing, briefly. "No, my lady. Lord Ravat is going to be speaking here at the Academ, and I was going to show him one of the classrooms. You're welcome to accompany us, of course."

Ravat smiles wanly. "I would take you off to vouch for me if I thought it would help." Following Elspeth's invitation he introduces himself with a polite bow. "Ravat Khournas. As she says, Professor Adeyemi is being kind enough to both help and distract me. I fear my presence here is entirely business, at present."

Ravat smiles wanly. "I would take you off to vouch for me if I thought it would help." Following Elspeth's invitation he introduces himself with a polite bow. "Ravat Khournas. As she says, Professor Adeyemi is being kind enough to both help and distract me. I fear my presence here is entirely business, at present."

Lucretia's expression is amused as she watches Elspeth's reaction and she nods, "Ah, a guest speaker? On what topic, I wonder?" She glances to the man with an easy smile, emerald eyes bright as she casually looks him over. "Lord Ravat, a delight, of course. I would be Lady Lucretia Cindravale, younger sister of High Lady Kallista. And please, do not mind my teasing of our dear Professor. I find she needs to get out more, and here I had my hopes up for her social future." Glancing back to Elspeth, "And it is of course wonderful to see you, darling. Keeping busy, I hope?"

"I can't help but notice that you tell /him/ not mind the teasing, but curiously do not share the same sentiment with me," Elspeth says, somewhere between exasperation and amusement. "And my social future is doing quite well, thank you, Lady Lucretia. I am always busy, as you know. And if you continue to tease, I shall tell you about my latest theories in the area of matrix transformations. In /exhaustive/ detail." Ravat receives a sidelong look, before she beckons to both lords. "Follow me, if you would?"

"An honor, Lady Lucretia. Manufacturing principles," Ravat adds in answer to Lucretia's question, before smiling at Elspeth and falling in beside her. "It should be a fascinating experience, although I am currently rather embattled by our own people. Those are the problems from which our good professor is gracious enough to provide distraction. I have alread bent her ear on the matter. I believe she will agree with me that it all is precisely as dull as it sounds."

Lucretia grins briefly at the younger woman, moving to follow the pair, "Matrix transformations, you say? I suppose I've teased you enough for one afternoon then, if you're resorting to such dire threats." She sighs dramatically and glances back to Ravat, "Ah, manufacturing. An important thing to understand, with the war just on the horizon." A little pause, and she adds, "And perhaps already here." As they walk, the older brunette falls silent briefly. Vocally anyways. A green aura of glowing light accented with glitter flecks of gold energy surrounds the older woman briefly as they walk, and she addresses the other woman telepathically, »Elspeth, darling. I do not know if you've spoken with anyone, or what your dreams have been like, but I suggest being wary. Do not spend too much time alone, and try to limit -any- time away from Landing or other large city. I, and others, suspect the Hostiles have an interest in taking Awakened.«

Lucretia grins briefly at the younger woman, moving to follow the pair, "Matrix transformations, you say? I suppose I've teased you enough for one afternoon then, if you're resorting to such dire threats." She sighs dramatically and glances back to Ravat, "Ah, manufacturing. An important thing to understand, with the war just on the horizon." A little pause, and she adds, "And perhaps already here." As they walk, the older brunette falls silent briefly. Vocally anyways. A green aura of glowing light accented with glittering flecks of gold energy surrounds the older woman briefly as they walk, and she addresses the other woman telepathically, »Elspeth, darling. I do not know if you've spoken with anyone, or what your dreams have been like, but I suggest being wary. Do not spend too much time alone, and try to limit -any- time away from Landing or another large city. I, and others, suspect the Hostiles have an interest in taking Awakened.«

Elspeth smiles back at Ravat. "There's only one cure for skepticism, my lord. You must rise to the challenge. And perhaps program an auto-responder for your communicator in the meantime." She chuckles at Lucretia's dramatic sigh. "I'm ruthless." The smile falters and wilts at the edges as Lucretia's words touch her mind. Her own aura, silver-blue, flickers up in response. She reaches for the door to the classroom building, opening it for the others as she responds in a like manner, »That would explain the dreams. Some of them, at least. Thank you for the warning…will it be publicized? The Academ is as safe as just about anywhere, but many of us are working in the forests, fields,« she glances at Ravat again, »And factories.«

Ravat, upon seeing both the women light up - is that a politically correct turn of phrase? - fights the urge to take a step or two away from them. Nobody had told him that it's rather more unnerving when an Awakened does this right next to him, as opposed to across a field at a tourney, on a stage, or halfway across the audience hall. "Ha." He has a sudden need to clear his throat. "Excuse me. Auto-responder," he echoes, trying not to sound sheepish, while throttling another incoming call. "You are correct, of course. Once I have this experience behind me it should be less painful the next time."

Even if Ravat can't hear the conversation, Elspeth's grimace speaks volumes. »Understood. Thank you again.« Her own aura subsides, as she sighs, and leads the way into one of the classrooms. It's large and airy, with vaulting skylights in the ceiling and stadium seating rising up from the central podium. "Remember, Lord Ravat; you know more about what you will be speaking on than any of the people who will be listening. Simply share your knowledge with them." She gestures at the central podium, her smile reassuring. "Go ahead and take the speaker's place. See how it feels."

"Oh, no, not at all. I shall be in the audience, coming into my own as an expert observer. I expect there I will be rubbing shoulders with fewer members of my family than if I were competing." Ravat permits himself to smile at his own jest. "Well." For the first he says nothing more when they step into the hall. He nods at Elspeth but takes a moment to eye the podium before he approaches it. Hands settled on either side of it, he looks up at the seats. "Oh, good. I was almost afraid this would be imposing. So…" Ravat clasps his hands behind his back and returns to the ladies. "Do you believe this hall will be full when I speak?"

"I handle a great deal of the Vale's economics, but I admit, I know rather little about the actual process of manufacturing. I just know where to buy things and where to sell them, and who is good to do business with. And who isn't." Lucretia comments as they move into the room. She glances around, then to Ravat with a smile for the younger man, and the once-actress queries in amusement, "Not a carrier of the dreaded Stage Fright virus, are you, Lord Ravat? Thankfully, I think all denizens of the Vale are born immune to its dreadful symptoms."

Elspeth grins as she watches Ravat move to the podium. "Will it make you feel better if I say yes, or if I say no?" She nods to Lucretia. "I can't say that I know much about either area, but I'm a fair hand with the programs and materials - I've always been interested in how the equipment is designed to process such a high volume in a hostile environment while preserving the safety of the workers involved." She leans against a desk. "You seem to be an adept speaker, and you're charming, Lord Ravat. You'll be /fine/. As to how many people - realistically, it depends on the timing and who's promoting the talk and how. Students are notoriously lazy, but…to be honest, it's not often that we get an unaffiliated member of the nobility coming to talk, particularly about the Crescent. I'd say you would expect a base of sixty percent full, with a margin of error of five or six percentage points. More if someone is championing it, or you do have the media show up."

Ravat shakes his head and turns to stand by the women once more, facing the podium. "Not as such, Lady Lucretia. Believe it or not, I'd prefer a stage. There I would have a script and I would know what I'm doing. No." He pauses a moment. "It's the anticiption. A classic case of the bark being worse than the bite. My meetings rarely involve more than a dozen people at a time. Sixty percent." His eyes travel across the room. "That is more than a few. The topic will be quite broad and general, as you can imagine. My dear 'friends' in PR will do their best to keep the media away, but… I would consider yours a friendly face, if you chose to attend." His attention goes to Lucretia. "If I may ask, Lady Lucretia, do you also teach?"

Lucretia laughs a bit and nods at Ravat's words, "Acting is at times much easier than say, giving a speech. You are simply playing a part." She glances to Elspeth, listening to the woman before asking, "And were you a lazy student, Elspeth?" Shaking her head, she glances back to the Khourni, "Oh, no, I fear not. Though I have been known to help guide the younger generation at the White Tower. I've spent a fair bit of time there, and I am one of the more experienced practitioners of Sorcery in Haven. And certainly one of the more personable out of that group, if I might say so myself," the brunette smiles as she answers.

Elspeth crosses her arms and grins at Lucretia. "I fear that answering that honestly might be held against me at some point, should the students find out. But I will simply say that I think that all the young have the urge to escape confining studies, at some point." To Ravat, she nods. "I'd be delighted, my lord. I'll bring along to stick to hit anyone who asks insulting questions."

"Fortunately I did not hear a word from you about any stick, so I shall be able to claim innocence should someone in the audience have a sudden urge to yelp," Ravat informs Elspeth, trying but not quite succeeding to appear perfectly serious. "I shall certainly do my best to do honor to both my house and Academ. I suspect that disinterest might do more to limit attendance than laziness. This is not a subject that's likely to set flight to a student's imagination. Since you are the first and only sorcerer with whom I have spoken, I am certainly not in a position to question that claim. Come to think of it…" Ravat studies Lucretia in silence for a time, then shakes himself. "Forgive me. There is something familiar about you that I've been trying to place. No doubt my own imagination getting the better of me."

"I see," Lucretia responds to Elspeth in amusement, and then offers a laugh at the remarks about the stick. Smiling at Ravat, she comments, "A shame to hear that, then, Lord Ravat. Of all the Awakened, we are by far the most fun. You will have to witness one of our infamous duels sometime. They are glorious. I'll leave Elspeth to her books and studying her abilities while I have fun with mine and provide a bit of entertainment." She glances to the woman with a playful grin before focusing on the man again, "Ah, do I? As many Valen nobles are wont to do, I was a bit of an actress in my youth, I imagine that is what it was. It's been over a decade since I did anything though. Hero of the Vale was my last work, eleven years ago and prior to that..I was a bit of "Scream Queen" as it were, starting when I was a small girl, and up through being a teenager."

"Of course," Elspeth says to Ravat, a hint of mischief in her smile. It remains, even as turns her attention to Lucretia. "Remind me to never introduce you to my parents at any point, Lady Lucretia. I would never hear the end of it." She shakes her head, then frowns. Two fingers go to her earbud, her eyes half-closing as she listens to the call. "Hmm? Ah, yes. My apologies, I was distracted. No, I'm not far. Five minutes? Yes." She terminates the call and looks up, apologetically. "It seems that I must depart. You're both welcome to stay; the classrooms are open to all when not in use. Play around with the equipment, don't break anything, and you should be fine."

Ravat grimaces slightly in thought. "That may very well be it. Hero of the Vale sounds familiar, but I don't recall that I've seen it. I have no doubt it will all come to me on my way home and then I'll feel like a fool. I believe I would like to see a duel. So far the only Awakened displays I have seen have been those staged at tournaments. I find those to be spectacular in their own right." Something about Elspeth's pose triggers a memory. "Oh! Oh! Goldy Glazer! How could I forget that name?" But, etiquette first. "The siren call of duty," he smiles at Elspeth and bows to her. "Thank you again, Professor Adeyemi. I bid you a pleasant day." With a grin he adds to Lucretia, "Killer Zombies with Two Heads. I loved that movie."

"Not fit to meet the family, am I? Oh, you hurt me, darling," Lucretia comments with a grin before she looks back to Ravat, "Oh, yes. We can put on quite the flash and bang, believe me." And then the older brunette stats to laugh loudly, her expression alight, "Oh, yes. Goldy was one of my last roles before I really fell into things with the White Tower. I sort of disappeared for a handful of years after that." She offers a mock curtsey, still grinning, "I am glad you enjoyed it, Lord Ravat. But, for now, I pray you will forgive me if I beg you pardon to leave? I will have to see about perhaps attending your lesson. Feel free to contact me sometime, if you'd like some company with something. I'm not hard to find." With a smile, the Witch turns to wander off.

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