07.03.3013: Belay That Order!
Summary: Nitrim and Helena discuss everything that went wrong with the initial meeting.
Date: 3 July 2013
Related: Awakened Insurrection
Helena Nitrim 


A Lounge - A Big House, Detritus
It's like a living room. Assume it's very pretty.
3 July 3013

Helena takes a moment to depart from the serious, and when Nitrim mentions interesting nights… She laughs quietly, raising her eyebrows in an expression that can only be pegged as 'dubious'. "Really now? From what I've read, you've had so many 'interesting nights' without prophetic dreams. I guess I just find it hard to believe that everything is always so mundane with you." Another laugh, this one softer, and she allows the conversation to drift naturally toward the objective of the meeting.

The doc's smile lingers, even as the topic turns serious. "The bad taste occurred right when Soleil showed up. It was not her presence that bothered me - far from it, in fact - but that she brought someone with her. A guard, no less. You do realize now that it's only a matter of time until the Princess, or hell, even the new King, will be aware of our group, right? And I know she tried to deflect doubt by saying she's not a flunkie of Princess Janelle's, but I haven't heard any news that she was dismissed as a lady-in-waiting. I hope that despite all of this, you can still trust her."
Interesting nights indeed. Nitrim doesn't comment, but his cheeks darken a shade. Comically, he lifts a shoulder in a slight shrug, much in the same way that someone does when asked what is inside of the wrapped present before it's opened. He'll never tell.

"Soleil and I talked often about this idea, this concept of putting together a Cabal of Awakened. For all that she hates me right now she's been so obsessed about her anonymity in Awakened matters that while I have some concerns myself, I didn't expect her to come with a guard. By the time she came in the room, the damage was done. I had assumed that if I was the host she wouldn't try for proxy-talk." Nitrim sighs, rubbing his hand over a twitching eyelid. It's been twitching strangely for weeks.

"Still, despite all of this I do trust her. Not implicitly, not after the trouble that's come between her and I, but I do believe that she's genuine to the cause and she'll defend that." He lowers his hand from his eye, blinking widely twice until he's sure that it's calmed down. "But then she was photographed like she was. She's in rehab right now, locked in her chambers at the Palace Towers." His eyes tilt back to Helena's and he frowns softly.

Helena has no tolerance for drug abusers. Her thin-lipped, merciless glance toward Nitrim is enough to communicate that and more. "Let us hope that rehab will do her some good, then. There's nothing you nor I can do about her current situation, so I don't consider it of import enough to discuss any further. It isn't my business." In that brusque, business-like manner that the woman finds ever so easy to adopt, she brushes past the topic and continues forward. "Then, despite my better judgment, I will trust that you both know what you are doing. On to my next concern regarding the group."

She pauses, watching Nitrim to be sure he is following her. "I do not like the idea of titular leaders for the group. I realize that it is a pet project and very important goal for you and Soleil, and I would not discount that by any means. But I believe a truly democratic group is absolutely necessary to make this work. By having people even volunteer to psuedo-lead with caveats, it basically puts you and Soleil above us in some way, to the point that others may feel less inclined to actually do anything without being told. It is not so much that I dislike the idea of people taking on a title so much as that the title may convince others that they don't have to do as much, participate as much, or even show up to meetings. We must all be leaders, every single one of us."

"Since the meeting, Helena, I'll admit I've thought of as much myself. We're by no means experts. The last thing the group needs is a couple of people with a strange cold-war taking on some bloody leadership role. I said as much to you with the initial idea that I wanted everyone to be equals. I didn't ask you in for your objectivity for you to be my flunky, by any means. No one deserves that sort of treatment." Nitrim admits, eyes continuously spanning the distance between them. He's paying attention, and he's also listening.

"There are others, you know, that were not present. Lady Devon Grantham was not there on medical emergency, and recently Lady Lyrienne Orelle expressed an interest quietly to me about wishing there was more she could do with the dreams. Rook and Talayla aren't the ambitious type, they don't want to lead. I want this to be a round table. I think the next meeting we have, with everyone present, we should address this issue."

"I think you are right," Helena answers quietly, and her posture relaxes visibly as Nitrim agrees with her outright. She was looking to put up a fight, but found no resistance whatsoever; sometimes that can take the wind out of a person's sails, so to speak. Suddenly, she finds herself lacking in anything else to address, having touched upon both issues. She does remind him, however: "And in the next meeting, we must stress that nobody is to bring guards, not even to stand outside the door. Their whereabouts are to be unknown or at least incredibly vague. If I feel like my identity may be compromised in the future, or that there is a possibility that the wrong word may reach Lady Dalton, I will abandon this venture faster than you can blink."

With this threat out of the way, and the conversation having taken a better turn than expected, Helena now seems downright cheerful. "I must ask, how in the world can you possibly live in such a bleak atmosphere? I felt like even the sunlight was being sucked into some kind of void. Is it ever really bright in Volkan?"

"Well, also in the next meeting we'll have more heads, more minds, more opinions and gods willing they'll speak up and be vocal. A democratic vote will handle the rest, and I think the first should be done around a nice…round…table." Nitrim replies, a bit of worry dotting his brow as he nods off into the distance. "Despite my tendency to find myself in trouble I assure you that it's never been my intent, and even I am changing my habits. I wouldn't want you or anyone to risk their reputations among their families, and we should also make a note that if someone decides to leave they are not spoken of and their identities are abruptly disavowed; nothing on paper or data."

To her next question, Nitrim laughs and points a finger at her, casting a narrowed pair of eyes towards her. "Well, someone definitely thinks Detrius is a paradise by comparions." He smirks and draws his hand back to his chest. "But for an answer? Because it's my home. Being raised in such a…furious place has given me a certain outlook on life. I'm not used to creature comforts, at least not ones that prick back on occasion. By all means, Helena, I like it here on Detrius, but I'd miss Volkan if I left it forever. It doesn't look it to an outsider but there are beautiful things to the place, like watching the rain hiss off of the ground from the overlook on the Spyre." He smiles. His personal favorite. "No. It's never really bright. It's dim like a well set dinner table…covered in drake skulls." He laughs again.

"Drake skulls!" Helena scoffs loudly, pulling the decorative pillow from behind her back and lobbing it at Nitrim. It is a half-hearted attempt to hit him, and the object is soft anyway. "Do not invite the Lady Sophie over for supper, then. I for one would miss the light. No amount of electricity can really make up for a distant sun, or what seems distant to me. It isn't the heat or — or anything of that sort, because that I can understand. It is comfortable to me. But…I don't know how to describe it. There is a certain energy, if you will pardon the pun, to Inculta. A certain way of life, a degree of hardiness that isn't so much 'hardy' as it is gracefully aware. Ugh, I'm sorry, I am not making any sense."

Giving her cause up for lost, Helena can only offer Nitrim a shrug. "I hardly hesitated when Lady Dalton offered me a position with her that would take me away from the Ring. I loved my work there, but everything was so artificial. I felt listless and half-ill when I couldn't get away for a weekend. I suppose the majority of us will always find home to be home. I wonder what it feels like for those fostered away from what they should call home when their heart isn't there."

Nitrim doesn't exactly catch the pillow. It sails between his hands and lands squarely in his chest, but his hands clap around the very end of it. With a laugh, he whips the pillow right back at her. "I did invite Lady Sophie over, you know. We had a conversation in my father's planning room where there's a massive drake skull at the far end of the table where he sits. I sat in his spot." Nitrim's eyes flash. DEVIOUSNESS. "But that's beyond the point. Sophie asked if I was interested in giving the drake a proper burial." He laughs, shaking his head. "She's so sweet."

"And no. I do understand. There is a life to Inculta that comes from above, like something bigger than you or I are being watched over for the better. It's an infinite universe and to feel that little bit of burn of the sun on a planet where we were designed to thrive…it's a less artificial existence. I just like to think that your sun above is the same as my lava below. We can feel the gods rumble beneath us at Volkan." Nitrim pauses, then flashes a sudden smile, laughing at a thought that's just sprung into place.

"Can I confide in you something Helena?" A beat. "You're going to think this is funny. Every bloody girl I've ever spoken to that wasn't Ibrahm, Grantham, or Khourni hates Volkan. HATES. Now like all nobles eventually my father or sister might try to arrange a marriage, right? I'm actually kind of mortified it'll be some girl from some beautiful place covered in sand or water or light and she'll sulk in the Great Room all afternoon and I'll be there like a tour guide saying it's not THAT bad…"

"She's a nitwit," Helena mutters about Sophie, but dismisses the subject with a shake of her head. Instead, she listens quietly to Nitrim, her smile growing wider by the moment, and she bursts into laughter at the idea - both of Nitrim being married, and of Nitrim being married to someone who hates his home. "Who knows? You might marry up, you know, and have to move in with her instead. In that case, she'll be giving you a tour of Niveus while you're bundled in a hundred layers and weeping for the warmth of Volkan." Her grin is mischievous as she wags a finger at him. "But given time, and the fact that a trip through the Ways takes but a moment, you both will manage to find some common ground. Or you will kill each other."

"Well, at least I won't be facing that possibility with House Iah, now will I? That and I would guilt trip her to no end until I got some sun. I'd cuckold her if I had to." Nitrim laughs, growling his teeth and pointing at Helena as if he just dropped an amazing bit of humor. Of course, though, I guess that could happen. I'm pretty adaptable, though. The truth is that life at the Crescent has prepared me for anything, even the loss of comforts. That's our strength. Having said that if we try to kill each other I would likely win. So no concerns there." He's joking, right? At least he smirks when he says it.

"Though…I hope there's some time before all of that happens." Nitrim sobers just a little, a far-off look in his eye. "I'm main line, though and we're at war. My sister will go first, long before I do, unless I suddenly make a name for myself. With the tabloid business at hand I'm either something my father will want to marry off to tie me down, or I'll be hard to make a match for regardless when he's got other, more heir-like sons and daughters. I'm not exactly the brightest catch on the Crescent." He smirks, feeling rather fifty-fifty about that concept. "Do you ever worry about these things? Matches and banns?"

The smile Helena offers to Nitrim is gentler in nature, and at his last question she shakes her head. "No, I do not. My brothers are older, and married and have children, and my family line will continue on with or without my help. My parents are not in a rush to force me into anything, and I have not considered marriage for longer than about — oh, a minute. Maybe two." She laughs quietly and sighs, rolling her shoulders and stretching her arms above her head.

"Odds are I will never marry unless something seriously juicy and tempting for my parents comes along. If that were the case, then I would go quietly. I can do my work wherever I am sent, so the portability of my expertise means I wil find a niche if I go. But I am past my prime, so to speak, and past the age where men are looking to find wives. I am married to my job, and that contents me more than anything else. I am convinced I am destined to always be a bridesmaid and never a bride." Helena's smile wavers for just a moment, but the passing is only a mere second or two. "But you are still very young, and you have many, many years ahead of you. I am quite certain that it will work out for you in the end."

The hour is, unfortunately, growing late. There are only so many times that Helena can disguise her yawns before they grow in strength. "Goodness, I do apologize, but I am an old woman who keeps early hours. It is well past the time for me to retire. If you are staying, my lord, there are servants just outside the chamber who will guide you - if you even need it at this point. I will see you on the morrow, and hopefully we will breakfast together. Cynan should be there, although I am not sure about Lady Dalton. She is so busy, and I do not envy her the work. Sleep well and, ahaha, pleasant dreams. I hope."

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