06.30.3013: Cotton Candy at Phylon
Summary: After the Bonfire in the Arborenin Forest, Ariana and Declan join the festivities at Phylon.
Date: 30 June 2013
Related: Follows Bonfires on the Aerie
Declan Ariana 

Phylon Festival Grounds
Description in log.
30 June 3013

The bonfire at Phylon burns brilliantly and unlike the more tribal celebration going on in the Arborenin woods, the festivities in the Vale are far more lavish with nobles and citizens alike dressed in their finest and festive garments, some even wearing gowns mimicking Ariana's fairy attire, while others have angel wings instead. The Larent lady looks excited enough to be here and that is clearly seen within her bright eyes, though a quiet smile plays upon her lips. She loves the fashion, the pomp and pageantry that the Cindravale are known for. There is hardly any savagery found here, unless someone just arrived from the Spine or even the Crescent. Leading the way, she brings Declan, first, to admire the orchestra that plays festive tunes and then to look upon the various treats being served. "My Lord, isn't this revelry splendid." Even their fire eaters are dressed so lavishly in this carnival atmosphere. "I do love noting all of the many differences between the ways the Paramounts and their vassals celebrate. We are of one people and yet we are different."

Which makes Declan the honorary savage-in-chief of the gathering? The Arboren Heir has accompanied Ariana from their own wild bonfire with its animal-themed masquerade, music and dancing. He even still has his own wooden wolf mask with him, although he doesn't presently wear it, having only made a brief show of it to a few interested locals, putting it on to help explain the tradition of the Spine to any curious citizens of the Vale. Despite this, the man has little enough trouble fitting in with the more civilized and formal gathering, and he seems just as fascinated by the various displays as his companion. "It's all quite grand," he admits, nodding his agreement, and then goes on, "It is true that we are many sorts of people as much as we are one. Is this your favorite, do you think? I am curious at how many variations must exist, among all the different Houses. The Khourni must be drinking -quite- excessively by now, I would expect!"

Ariana sways gently with each of her steps to the whimsical tunes playing in the background. The Larentian maiden seems to be happy and more at ease here than she did at the bonfire in the woods and yet still, all of her expressions and gestures remain as subdued as normal, despite that one would expect her to be excited in this environment. Standing at the concession stands, she is handed a delightfully sweet and air treat resembling spun clouds: cotton candy. She hands the green colored cloud to Declan to represent his house colors, while she holds a bright cyan cloud for herself. To his question, she now looks thoughtful, "Hmm. I would have to say yes. I do love the festivities in Phylon. Things are always so much grander here, though parties at Landing are just as vibrant. I'm sure they have some holographic bonfire on the Ring right now too." She then laughs gently, "Why yes, the Khourni seemed to relish in their alcohol consumption."

Declan seems suitably amused by Ariana's choice in House pride-expressing confectionery, smirking as she hands over his particular sugary cloud. "Burning actual fuels inside the station would be a bit of a no-no, wouldn't it?" he remarks, as she suggests the Orelle high-tech solution and he tries to imagine it. "But I have to say, for an event like this, I like doing it… amidst nature. By which I don't only mean our own festival, but simply how… fulfilling it is, to gather around a fire, with friends and family and celebration and know that you are amidst something with such tradition. I appreciate many of the advantages technology gives us, but a holographic fire sounds like it might slightly miss the point." He pulls a strand from the candy, the sugar melting quickly on his tongue. "I think we do well as a House in terms of the vigor of our celebration, but they probably have us beat in that department, yes. I'd be almost afraid to show up there now, this late into it. I probably wouldn't make it out without a brawl or two, and against their ilk, a good number of bruises."

The string of sugary fluff matches the airiness of Ariana's outfit as she gently takes tears off a bit of candy, tucking it away into her small mouth. "That, I do agree with, My Lord. I love the Ring and all of the luxuries technology has to offer, but something like a bonfire should be held outdoors to truly feel the spirit of the event. It's not that the Ring or the Lashes do not know how to celebrate this particular holiday and I'm sure that if House Iah…" She pauses before she offers any news that she has yet to confirm, "weren't still recovering from their attack on the Hostiles on Niveus, they would have one of the grandest bonfires ever. Though, I'm certain that they are still celebrating, though more solemnly." She then frowns gently at the very thought of going anywhere near Volkan, "Well, I for one am not overly fond of the Crescent for the most part, but Obsidia is lovely."

"With it's glassy falls? It is quite a sight," Declan admits, nodding his head and looking slightly absent in his thoughts. Obviously, as the heir of his family, he has cause to travel and visit most of the other Houses, although some more recently than others. "The idea of a great bonfire on frosty Niveus does sound quite intriguing, the guests trying to stand close enough not to be too hot but fearing to stray too far into the cold. I hope they are celebrating, even as they mourn, just as we do for King Emund even as we mourn his father." This grim topic is passed over without an overabundance of sentimentality. "It is important we all go on, that we live in defiance of the Hostile threat, and continue in the face of their best efforts to the contrary. Which actually brings me to something I wished to speak to you about. I had thought to mention it back in the woods, but you were so excited to see the other festivals, and the time for that is clearly the more limited, in this case."

Ariana nods her head quickly when the falls are mentioned, "It is absolutely breathtaking, though, admittedly, the Crescent as a whole just feels so stiflingly.. hot. So I do not spend much time there." She then laughs gently as she considers the places which she does like, "My favorite places tend to be places of beauty, like Nubilus, of course, and Mare Maris." Once more, she draws out a strand of cotton, placing it into her mouth in a subtle motion. As Emund is once more brought up within the night, she nods slowly to the Arboren, "It's not surprising, I think, that King Symion chose Prince Emund as his successor. Now with that responsibility on his shoulders, I just know that he will take action against the Hostiles shortly." Quietly, the pair continue to stroll around the festival grounds, speaking and relishing in the taste of soft sugar. However, curiosity now gets the better of her, when the Arboren heir next speaks. "Oh? What did you wish to speak of, My Lord? You need not concern yourself on the where or when if there is really something that must be said."

"I do prefer the native climate of the Spine," Declan admits as she describes the Crescent as such, "Although I suspect most people get used to the weather where they grow up, even more than other things." He listens intently (and perhaps watches her picking apart of the cotton candy) as she speaks of her more favored places. "I do think Mare Maris is a beautiful place. It is different from my home, wildly so, but it is still a gem of great natural beauty. I am not surprised that they share some things in common with our own coastal vassals." Of Emund, the Young Lord gives a solemn nod. "I do hope so. When my family was discussing the matter, one of the things brought up most frequently was his condition of late, and we have made some plans within the family to offer condolences and reassurances to him in private. He's always been close with my mother, and my aunt also lost a spouse. We are hopeful that in some combination we will be able to find words to inspire him, although you may be right, that the burden of leadership itself is all that might be required." As their ambling takes them along, he eventually slows and then glances about, perhaps judging the privacy of their company, before conceding to her curious inquiry. "No, here is as good a place as any, since you are enjoying yourself." Though maybe, he would have preferred if she enjoyed his home more! "I have enjoyed our many social visits and outings of late, Lady Ariana, just as I've enjoyed tonight. Wishing that we might continue, I recently went to meet with your father, and asked his permission to court you properly. Though it is not yet officially announced, both he and my mother have given their agreement, and we must simply work out the final details. It is my hope that this news might suit you, my lady, that my pleasure in these outings has not been solely one-sided."

Ariana's nose wrinkles gently when she says, "If I grew up in Crescent, I'm sure that my fair, delicate skin would be ashy right now. I don't think I would be able to survive in such a terrain at all." With those truthful words spoken, she blinks a moment, before quickly adding in as to not make herself look so judgmental, "But yes, I'm sure that you are right, My Lord. And while I could never imagine myself growing up or living in Volkan or on Ignis… or even Inculta, those who have had the chance and pleasure to live there must truly have come to love their homes." Lightly, she dabs her fingertips off on a damp cloth which is grasped within the hand that holds onto the cone topped with the fluffy confection. She listens quietly and nods to what is spoken of regarding politics and the death of a spouse, but what is brought up next catches her completely by surprise. "I have enjoyed your gracious company as well, My Lord…" Her words trail off, as if the young woman were left speechless. The smile which she wore still lingers on her pretty face, though there is that look of surprise which she cannot hide from her eyes. "What did my father say?" She asks even more curiously now when the fact is brought up that he did speak to Percival. "I see. I'm afraid that this news is very much a surprise to me as my Lord Father had not mentioned anything as of yet. I suppose, he planned to do so once the negotiations are finalized." Her eyes now shift, as she considers these words and while the smile fades slowly, she does not look disappointed at all. Just thoughtful. Soon enough, her gaze is upon him once again and that polite smile brightens her angelic features, "This is glorious news, My Lord. How envious all of the other young ladies will be when they learn that a Paramount Heir is courting me. I do come to wonder, My Lord, why you and your family have selected me out of all of the other eligible noblewomen. Just out of curiosity."

"I am probably getting a little ahead of things," Declan admits, nodding about the theorized timeline their parents may be following. "But I felt on this, another outing in one another's company, that I ought to say something, and make my intentions clear. I would not wish for you to find my attention unseemly, nor to think mine the idly wandering gaze of any young nobleman." Of course the young man is polite himself in all of this, rather than openly passionate as those in lesser positions might allow themselves to be. Though her slow and thoughtful reaction may give him brief pause, and even a momentary look of concern that might hint at some investment in the idea, he smiles when she speaks up in the end. "I am glad the idea suits you." And he does seem glad, more than simply politely so. "Your father and I spoke long on some of the reasons," the Young Lord goes on. "I would not bore you with too lengthy a discussion, but there are more than a few reasons. Our House is somewhat at odds with the Orelle, but that does not mean we can ignore the 'niche' the Lords of Oculus and it's vassal moons represent. So it will provide us with important links we did not have before, links that will be stronger than those we might gain with a Paramount, for that matter. There are of course many things we can provide to your family, the natural resources the Spine is abundant with and which Nubilus must strictly import." He pauses briefly, and then adds, "And I find you a lovely and charming woman, one who would be enviable at my side, both as a partner and companion. Though a noble union may be of political convenience, it will still be stronger if its two halves share some common ground."

Ariana's features remain controlled, her every expression well thought out from here on. While any other young woman might show her excitement or otherwise, far more easily, Ariana's actions have always been mostly reserved though her eyes now shine with intensity as she looks directly at the young heir. "I truly wish he had spoken to me earlier, but nonetheless, he has his reasons." Drifting a few steps back, but not in a recoiling manner, the young woman saunters around the area in a graceful pacing as she breathes in the now chilly night air, the burning scent of the bonfire a welcoming aroma. "Yes, an alliance between our houses will boost House Larent greatly." She speaks now of the same business-like manner that Declan does as he explains to her of his and his House's decision. And once more she comes face to face with the heir, her smile growing all the more at his compliments to her beauty and charm. "I must admit that this is all… a pleasant surprise. It is always an honor to be able to marry the heir to a paramount House, so I will be doing my family proud with this union." A pause, "Did my Lord Father make things difficult for you?"

Declan watches Ariana both curiously, and maybe with a bit of concern as she paces about, although when she turns back to him with another winning smile, it seems to put him more at ease. In other cases, he might not be so easily placated, he might lean toward his natural suspicion, but the fairer sex does have it's capacity to disarm and beguile. "Hopefully, it is but the first such surprising pleasure. I would be remiss my courtship was predictable." Just hopefully he doesn't pull any Arboren ninja tricks, popping out of bushes with flowers. The concern toward her father's treatment of him earns a bit of a laugh. "I would not say that he made it easy. Your father is shrewd and asked me intelligent and pointed questions, and was certain to know my purpose and my House's interests before he would concede anything. And I expect he is being equally difficult with my mother, in hashing out all the little details."

"I do thank you for informing me of this matter, Lord Declan. It does give me much to think about… and even more to look forward to." Ariana speaks with a smile at her lips. She even returns to picking at the remainder of her cotton candy, savoring the far-too-sweet taste as she falls deeply into thought, though her feelings are always difficult to read. "I can see my Lord Father being difficult for any suitor seeking a contract with each of his children. I have no idea how my Lady Sister will react when she learns of this, as she expected to be married before myself, due to our birth order. It might even upset her just a little. How amusing that may be."

Although Declan smiles lightly in an echo of Ariana's theoretical amusement, he does offer, "Your elder sister's position is very different for your own, as someone must be found to bring into the family, posing a very different set of requirements. The younger children serve more readily in forming alliances and bonds to other houses. Of course, if she is terribly concerned, you may point out that I have -several- younger siblings." He chuckles at this, although the suggestion may or may not be that serious, as it would double up on that particular alliance. "Let us simply be happy for our own situation, and wish her well in her future match. Shall we return to the festival?" Not that they've left, so much as wandered from the main bustle. "There is much yet to see, I'm sure."

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