03.18.3014: Humidity
Summary: Nitrim pays the Hollolas House a quick visit. Lord Commodore Roger wants to meet High Lord Jevon once more
Date: 08 December 2013
Related: None
Alix Cyrielle Nitrim Roger 

Open-Air Gardens — Hollolas Estate
Room description included in scene
March 18, 3014

Across most of Imperius, Winter is beginning to fade away into Spring. Within Beacon, however, the weather has been rain along with more rain. The usual lovely, balmy weather is made hot and muggy as a result. Thankfully, on this fine evening… the rains have opted to give way to some pleasant, breezy weather. Much of the Hollolas household is out and about, tending to gardens and checking on various holdings.

Since her return from Willowtree to the Hand itself, Cyrielle has been doted after by the household staff. She's the prodigal youngest… returned for a second time. Her treehouse won't be a good environment for her until she's well-used to her leg and the doctors clear her to live alone in a place with stairs. So, the woman is certainly outside the Hand, letting the sound of the ocean provide a backdrop to her time in the gardens. A light meal has been laid out on a table; the hour just a bit past lunch. The woman herself is seated at the edge of a garden box, eyes whited over and her Awakened aura about her. She's heavily distracted; even obvious by the way her eyes are half-lidded.

She's doing her familial duty, or so she's been told; Alixandria Hollolas is loitering on that balcony with her cousin, not so much looking at or speaking with her for the time being, bust just /being/ there, hoping her presence is somewhat comforting. She alternates between looking off the ledge and looking back down to her place in the book she last left off. There's not much to say or do considering how preoccupied Cyrielle is at the moment, but again, if any of the Help see her, she's getting Family Points for this. And this book is excpeitonally interesting, so why not read it outside?

Roger Hollolas is here, of course, and he's rushing about, as he so often is. Between the constant reports on the defenses of Beacon, the administrative tasks that befall the Head of House on a daily basis, the meetings with outside dignitaries and the public appearances that only seem to grow more frequent with every passing week, he hardly ever has time to sit down. One of those times, however, seems to be today, and accordingly he makes his way to where his daughter and niece are seated outside the Hand, raising a little-h hand in greeting.

The last month has been rather brutal for Nitrim Khournas. The death of his sister has been a hot topic on the news, and the tabloids have placed him having coffee with Lady Evey Dalton and shoving away a member of the press that dared to cut a little too deep to the bone. Volkan has been his home-base for this time, as have his family, but without a doubt the atmosphere at the already gloomy Blackspyre has been even more so. So, seeking a way out of the gloom he chooses the Hand and finds…rain.

Presenting himself to the house staff, Nitrim is led through the corridors to where he can meet with the members of House Hollolas that are present. Wearing his long, black coat and gloves over his hand, he is presented quietly as he enters the room and lowers his head in a slight nod to all of them. "Good Afternoon." Nitrim greets, his arms sliding behind his back. "I hope I'm not interrupting?"

Really, Cyrielle Hollolas has been a quiet thing since she's been back at the Hand. Most, likely, have chalked it up to the trials of adapting to a cybernetic limb after six years of putting up with a mangled limb that healed ill. She hasn't been ignoring her cousin; more just accepting her presence. Still, the flowers are looking steadily better. The weather has been drowning some of them; over-watering and causing them to become dark and heavy of leaf and stem.

As her druidic powers extend over the flowerbeds, they're becoming brighter. Reaching higher to the sun that thankfully shines down today. Her father's arrival, soon followed by the Khournas serve as distraction enough and Cyrielle sits up somewhat straighter, looking towards them. She doesn't quite get to her feet and the way the lightweight blue skirt she wears — paired with a sleeveless, lighter blue top — drapes over her legs, showing the pale white of the cybernetic… it's obvious, perhaps, why. "No, no. Just… tending to the plants. I thought I might help the gardeners out a bit." There's a wry smirk. "A pleasure to see you in Beacon, Lord Nitrim. You're fortunate that there's a break in the rains today…"

"Though the library is, naturally, as spectacular a place to spend one's time as ever." Alix 'finishes' her cousin's sentence before looking up from the book in her lap, the page evidently memorized for later as she's snapped the book shut without so much as a bookmark. Dark eyes look first to Cyrielle, then to Roger, and lastly to Nitrim, a smile for each that's not the same as the one for the last. Her dress is a shimmery, muted cinnamon color that has her blending in with reeds and bushes in the overwatered gardens, and the skirt pools around her feet and the chair she's sitting on. Maybe overkill, but it's still a lovely color, and it's why she's chosen it. "Allow me if I may, Lord Nitrim, to wish you my sincerest condolences in person for all that's befallen you of late." It's highly unlikely she would have gotten to say so before.

"Catching as much of the sun as we can while it's out, eh?" That's Roger's voice booming across the gardens, and he comes to a stop just a few steps away from Cyrielle and Alix, grinning from ear to ear. That grin gets /just/ a bit smaller when Nitrim arrives, but nevertheless the Lord Commodore makes a point of continuing to smile. "Ah, Lord Nitrim. No trouble, no trouble at all… of /course/ you're welcome here." A little nod, and then his eyes flicker over to his niece and his expression becomes much nore somber. "Likewise, lad, likewise. Not the brightest of times for you."

Knuckles rolling behind his back to free the strain from the humid air, Nitrim's brow lifts as the three greet him. His normally serpentine, green eyes scan their faces and catch that slight falter in Roger's smile, leaving him to hover his gaze over the elder Hollolas' face for just a moment longer. "Thank you," Nitrim smiles faintly, his cheek tugging slightly; barely a twitch. Feeling the weight of Roger's gaze, he turns his eyes to Alix. "I do, really, appreciate it. There's something funerary about back home, it's nothing green like the Hand. I figured at the least a wander to drop by and say hello would be nice." His eyes travel to Cyrielle. "I won't bother your family time long, I promise."

There's a soft snort for the way Alix completes the thought, but it's a teasing sort of thing. Cyrielle may not be one oft for the library, but she can appreciate it enough to understand her cousin's love of the tomes within. She shifts slightly, moving to rise from the low ledge she's seated on. One of her crutches is grabbed and she starts situating herself and the tool to get upright.

"There's some snacks and wine on the table there," she offers with a nod towards. "Please, share. Everyone seems to think I don't eat enough these days." Likely her father's doing. Cyrielle may have inherited much of her father's demeanor, but his appetite she did not. "I'm sure your sister would rather see you out and about than cooped up somewhere dark. It wasn't like her and it isn't like you."

Alix isn't sure what's in Nitrim's character, nor is she sure what his sister would want. She does know, however, that the floor to ceiling windows in the library make it a wonderfully desirable place to be regardless - in her estimation - of your level of enjoyment for books. "The cheese is exceptional, Lord Nitrim," she recommends, producing a wine glass from behind her chair and taking a sip before running the opposite hand through her short, blonde hair.

Likely her father's doing, indeed. Roger has already detached himself from the group to pick up one of every snack that's there, and when he turns back around, it's with a mouth stuffed with cheese. He at least has the courtesy to swallow before he starts to speak, though. "As I said, it's no trouble at all, lad. We're glad to give you the chance to brighten up a bit." He smiles again for a moment, though it's nothing but teeth.

With a cant of his head t the side, Nitrim's brows lower and he nods towards Cyrielle, considering her words as he opts to enter the room a bit more. "Reena was a bit of a social butterfly. I don't know if any of you knew her but I think she would have liked this room." Nitrim admits, shaking his head to wash away the gloom; getting over it, as it were. "So…" Nitrim starts up again, crossing past Alix and Roger on his way to the table with a smirk. "I wanted you to know that I've had guests in and out at Volkan and I'll talk to my father about it when the time is right, but if you were all inclined I thought I could show you Volkan someday."

There's a glance to Roger as he raids the snacks and Cyrielle wrinkles her nose slightly. It's an old look that her father has likely seen from her since she was a child. She knows he's up to something. At least he hasn't threatened to break out the childhood photos or something equally embarassing. It could always be worse.

Such a mantra, perhaps, is one oft-repeated by the young noblewoman these days. Cyrielle finally gets herself upright and secured with both crutches. "I was tiring of feeling useless around here, so I thought I might ensure some of the flowers don't drown in the rains." And as she moves from the flower bed, she releases her Awakened state. The aura around her fades and the color returns to her eyes. The offer from the Khourni receives no response from the young Hollolas; she'll let her father field that one. Instead, she's moving towards the table to retrieve her own glass of wine.

Travel? Or is the invitation even for her? Alix quirks a brow, intent to listen for the moment rather than speak. She'll make like one of those beautiful flowers her lovely cousin has been sparing from death and cling to the wall, mostly unnoticed for the time being while she reclines in her chair, sipping her wine.

"Been too long since I've been to Volkan, lad. I'd be pleased to pay a visit." Roger takes a step back, gesturing to both his daughter and his niece. "We'll /all/ go, in fact. I trust that your father will be more than happy to entertain so many guests." With such prodigious appetites, at that. Dipping his head in a little nod, he adds, "It's good to see a lad such as yourself interested in the fine art of /hospitality/. There's nothing like good travel and good food to hold us together at a time like this."

His back to Roger, Nitrim looks up to try to make eye contact with Alix and Cyrielle, each in turn. Taking a slice of cheese for himself, he sets it onto a plate and lets his eyes swivel between the two. "I know it doesn't have the same life the Hand does, but if either of you were curious to see drake skeletons close up it would be interesting. At the least, I have my own private library you could pick through." The last said for Alix, his eyes flit to Cyrielle before he turns to face Roger. "It may be a short while. The war and - well - everything has left the place feeling more of a factory than a home. I'm sure my father would be interested to meet people that I visit, go sailing with, and all. I rather like your son, Ephraim, too." Nitrim smirks, head shaking slightly. "But it occurred to me there's a lot of lines that are important, and others that aren't, and since you've shown me your prize ship it would make me happy to show you around my haunt."

At the mention of a library, the youngest of Roger's brood does look to her cousin, offering a flash of a smile. If a brief one. "Lord Nitrim is fond of toasts and speeches on the importance of staying together," Cyrielle murmurs over her glass of wine as she takes in the others as a whole, managing something of a smirk. So she did hear enough of his words before her rushed departure from Mott's Tavern. "I am, to be honest, more interested in seeing live drakes than mere skeletons."

There's a gauging look for her father as she speaks and Cyrielle continues: "I hear of drake hunts. Perhaps one of those could be arranged." A glance to her leg, covered mostly by the skirt now, and the Hollolas finishes her wine. "Well. Once I am more healed, of course."

She rolls her eyes. "You're trying to bribe me now, Lord Nitrim, and you know it." Punctuating her sentence with a rather flourishing sip-then-discard movement that has her cup back on the ground beside her chair, Alix looks up at Nitrim from beneath a quirked brow with a smug grin on her face. Why she sould be smug now is anyone's guess, but. "Whenever my dear Uncle names the day, then, perhaps I shall enjoy this library you boast so much about." And by 'perhaps' she means 'you'll need to space-crow-bar be out of it.'

"Of course, of course. Such things require preparation." Roger gives another little nod and shuffles back to the snack table. More cheese. More gulping as he listens to the others exchange words. "Mmm. A hunt, you say? Would be a fine change of pace. I grow tired of chasing after sharks." His brow knits for a few moments. "Temper that desire with caution, however. We can hardly afford to lose able-bodied men chasing after animals."

A chuckle crosses over Nitrim's teeth as he swivels around on his hip to look back at Cyrielle. He lifts the plate of cheese in a salute to her, and his slender eyebrow twitches with the touche. So she did hear. "Well, to be fair, my library is more like three bookshelves and a lot of personal journals of old, dead people, but their words in their hand is the stuff that interests me." Nitrim replies to Alix, "And you're right, this cheese is exceptional. Concordant even." Flashing his teeth, Nitrim turns so that he can face all three of them. "But Lord Commodore, you're right, drake hunts take lives but there are some places to get close enough to see them from afar. I'm sure you wouldn't throw me in a tank with a shark any more than I'd put you in a canyon with a drake nest, right?" Nitrim winks to the man. "But I'm sure one or two of you have thought about throwing me in a shark tank at least once."

"Volkan, I have found, is an interesting place. I still prefer the deep forests to be found within The Spine, but…" A slim shoulder rises and falls in a shrug. "There is interest to be found most anywhere, I suppose. Though, I can't say I've found much on The Ring." Cyrielle's lips quirk slightly. "Well, perhaps we can see the drakes and save the hunt for another time." A glance towards Nitrim, with this.

Enough words; the woman finally reaches for some cheese herself, opting to pair it with a bit of bread rather than eat it solo. Nibbling, Cyrielle glances towards her father. Once she swallows a bite, her expression spreads into a broad, if sly smile. "Perhaps, in turn, we could take Lord Nitrim the next we must hunt sharks?"

"I'd like to make sure first that at least most of your house doesn't think I'm an insufferable shitbag first." Nitrim muses, playfully, clearly a joke. "But I doubt you'd do something so foul to your sharks."

Both of Alix's golden brows are perched high on her forehead now as she regards the pair of younger people before her. "You've not done anything to convince me of such thoughts, Lord Nitrim, though I'm not sure my opinion counts for much." MORE WINE. Let them bicker while she rises and glides over to the table, her movements quite feminine and graceful despite the boyish haircut, wardrobe, and preferences in pastimes. She pours as she looks between the other two, the deep red liquid filling her glass quickly.

"Mmmm. You know, Lord Nitrim, the thought hadn't come to mind." Roger is still smiling, but it's now an entirely obligatory thing, lips pressed together, sea-green eyes fixed solely on Nitrim's. He takes a step closer to the Khourni, then another, and then he reaches out to give the young man a hearty clap on the back. "Word of advice, lad," the Lord Hollolas whispers, though his 'whisper' is still loud enough to be heard quite easily by Alix and Cyrielle. "Self-deprecation doesn't suit you."

Urk! Nitrim's should claps forward as it is hit from behind and grunt sounds from the Khourni nobleman. His eyes shoot wide and his teeth grit, setting the plate down to press a palm to the soft meat near his armpit as he rolls the shoulder. "You always hit that nerve." Nitrim comments to the man, eyes lidding so that he can laugh. The smile begins to fade, though, as he looks to their faces. "If you don't mind me asking, though, my family's been entrenched in the war since it began. It's a hot topic back home, especially now. Where do the Hollolas stand on the direction to go with all of this?"

"Sometimes I fear he fancies himself a comedian," Cyrielle murmurs, shifting to Alix's side to take the wine after and refill her own drink. The blonde gains a glance and an aside: "But I think he ought to stick to his other talents, mm?" She flinches in sympathy as Nitrim, once again, receives the brunt of her father's strength. When the question is posed to those gathered, she opts just to bite down on her lip and stare at the table… as if considering the fare presented and what she might wish to eat next.

Yes, Cheese is far less volatile than War. Except that kind that burns for days on other planets. Alix follows her cousin's lead and doesn't say a thing, choosing instead to sip her wine and peek over the rim of the glass to see what else she can nosh on.

"When you get to be my age, lad, you learn how to make sure every blow counts." When Nitrim laughs, Roger does likewise, a big, booming thing that echoes throughout the garden. "Wouldn't mind in the slightest. That's what's on everyone's minds right about now, isn't it?" That tight-lipped, obligatory smile is back. "We stand in Beacon, Lord Nitrim. We're here to protect our land, our people, and our seas. That is all."

Though the arm is still sore, Nitrim stops rubbing and leaves the plate of cheese on the corner of the table. With one final shrug, which is a certain grade of warm, angry pain, he lets it go. "I suspected as much. I apologize, I didn't mean to make anyone uncomfortable." Nitrim says pointedly to Alix and Cyrielle, lips flattening before he looks to Roger. "I've had audiences with the Cantosan captive, I've been on the front. It's been brutal, really, and while I happen to believe that we can reach a cease-fire someday, right now they've got genocide on their minds. So if they come…" Nitrim frowns. "…don't expect them to slow down to talk just yet."

"It was Hollolas ships that brought the majority of rescue efforts to Lazarus Island," Cyrielle speaks up finally, shifting her stance to try to balance on her old leg, while keeping some weight on the new. She can't eat and use crutches at the same time. Or drink, as the case may be when she lifts the glass to take a sip. "You can't easily speak peace with men who are trained to patrol the waters, not fight Hostiles, yet had to go into that." Her gaze slides towards her father, "As he said… we stand. We are not a Paramount, with armies at our beck and call. Though, I assure you, the day the Hostiles opt to terrorize the seas… we will be there."

This is where Alix will continue to be awkwardly silent; she knows /nothing/ of familial importance with regard to the other houses or the world at large. Her bigoted father was not fond of her in the least, and she was taught nothing, really from him. All her understanding of current events is from books and other texts, so how is she to speak from personal experience? Instead she pulls a Roger and stuffs a hunk of bread into her mouth to avoid needing to say a thing.

"You think I haven't been to the front, lad? Long as there's still breath in me, I'll be there still. Right now, this talk of a cease-fire is the /furthest/ thing from my mind." Emphasis on 'right now.' "But enough of this!" he proclaims, taking a moment to, yes, gobble down some more cheese. Can't get enough of that. "Have you had the chance to see much of Beacon as of yet?"

Brushing a hand over the top of his head, Nitrim scans their faces, offering a quiet smile to the room as a whole. "The experience, what's important and what isn't, varies from house to house. Lady Cyrielle may have told you I'm a bit of a non-stop when it comes to trying to think this one through." Nitrim explains, taking a step forward to lower himself into one of the chairs. It lets him rest his slightly numbed arm. Letting out a sigh, he folds his arms in his lap. "I've seen this house, the forests, and have spent a little time on the sea. I haven't seen everything I'm sure." Nitrim looks up. "Do you have any suggestions for me? Things I shouldn't miss?"

"The kitchens." There's few opportunities for Cyrielle to tease her own father and she simply /cannot/ miss this one. The woman pours a second glass of wine and awkwardly steps around the table to offer it to Nitrim. She actually makes a few steps without the aid of the cane. Perhaps it's a subtle — or not so, depending on your point of view — way of showing off. "You overthink it because you're further away from the matter. My father, your father, our sisters…" the heirs, "they have greater, pressing matters. More than you, myself, my brother," a nod to Alix, "or my cousin… will ever know."

Right! And right now she knows wine and cheese. It's so ritzy and wonderful, no? Alix nods at being included, though she does continue to look between Cyrielle and Nitrim for a few moments before - not showing off - she steps around the table to return to her seat. "You know what I'm going to recommend," she finally overs after swallowing her bread and before replacing it with - you guessed it - more cheese.

"Well-spoken, lass." Cyrielle's words may bave been in jest, but Roger takes them quite seriously. "There's /nothing/ like fish that was pulled from the sea a few hours before it's set on your plate. Any of a dozen places in Beacon will give you that." He lets out a little 'mmm.' "And I'd be pleased to have someone show you to the top of the lighthouse. The view is utterly breathtaking."

"Books?" Nitrim suddenly speaks up, looking over to Alix with a devilish funny-face that breaks into a generous grin. "Oh the cheese? Seriously, though, if you've been able to be scarce for so long on books alone I'd like to see this library, too. And Fish." Nitrim turns his attention to Cyrielle and her father, motioning to them as he takes his wine. "Thank you. I'd like to see this lighthouse. I've got a thing for views. There's this window in my apartments at the Blackspyre that overlooks a whole wedge of the city. I don't know if it's like staring at the sea, in theory, but I sit there for hours sometimes."

There's a chuckle for her father's response and Cyrielle makes her way to another chair, fair falling into it. "The lighthouse does have a good view," she says, but there's a hint of frustration to her words. The woman swallows it down in another drink of wine, slowly stretching her leg out. Under the skirt, it gleams white. She hasn't gotten synthskin over it yet. "Perhaps Ephraim can take him up there." Because that's what Beacon needs; two rakes getting to plot. There's a pause, the woman thoughtful as she looks over into the gardens. "I sometimes prefer the sound of the sea, to the view."

"Am I so obvious?" But Alix doesn't answer whether the books or the cheese are the correct answer. Cyrielle seems to be waxing philosophic so her cousin is taking a sip of wine before falling silent again, choosing to close her eyes for a few moments to hear the sounds of the garden around her before picking up her book again.

"If you think the city's impressive, Lord Nitrim, then just wait until you've seen the sea from that high. Truly something to behold." There's a lull in the conversation, and Roger, as he is wont to do, fills the void by picking up another piece of cheese. Between bites, he remarks, "The sound is very comforting, isn't it?"

"I guess this settles it." Taking a sip from the wine, Nitrim pushes up from the chair to stand. Looking down the front of his shirt, he brushes his shirt down and taps the steel of his belt buckle. "I'll put everything together at Volkan, which I really should return to because of the patrols, and we'll put together this lighthouse tour." Downing the last of his drink, he sets the glass aside and claps his hands gently together. "Thank you, it was nice to get away for a little bit."

"Your love for cheese is prodigious across all of The Spine, dear cousin," Cyrielle offers towards Alix with a flash of teeth. She finishes the wine and reaches for her crutches, getting back to her feet with only a small measure of effort. "The sound is comforting now," she says towards her father, a softness in her tone. "It took me time, but I have learned to forgive the sea and love her once again." One can never take a Hollolas from the ocean forever. "Lord Nitrim, if you would like… I can see you out." There's a glance, for family. "Perhaps we could even have my chair," the one she's to use if she's feeling overwhelmed or going to be out too long, "brought, so no one has to worry I'm overdoing it."

Prodigious. It makes Alix snort and she covers her mouth with the back of her hand, book clutched within its fingers, as her cousin gets up to see Nitrim out. "Good to see you, Lord Nitrim. Perhaps it'll be sooner still that we meet again?" But wine and book are interesting, and the flirting of her cousin and the resident rouge is something she probably should utifully ignore.

"Mmm." Roger's brow knits for a few moments, and his sea-green eyes flicker from Cyrielle to Nitrim. Back to Cyrielle, back to Nitrim. Finally, he gives a little nod of approval before turning to make his way out of the garden. Just before exiting, though, he stops and glances over his shoulder. "You'll be quite pleased, Lord Nitrim, to have /two/ Hollolas women see you out. Good afternoon."

Looking back to Roger, Nitrim's eyes are sharp. They're both men. He understands, and to make the point chear he offers the man a quiet nod. "I wouldn't have it any other way, I could use the company." Nitrim says to him with a certain resolution to his voice. "Good day, Lord Commodore." Nitrim adds, moving to the door to wait for the two women. "Could I have the honor of pushing the chair on the way out?"

There's a look towards her Father, but Cyrielle isn't going to fight. This isn't the time or place. There would likely never be a time or place. Instead, she gives a small nod and shifts on her crutches, moving towards the doors into the Hand itself. She's met by a member of the household and requests the chair be brought out. "Perhaps I could begin planning a sailing trip, to go fishing. I know Ephraim wanted to teach Nitrim." A look from Roger, to the man in question. "For when the rains stop and the seas are a bit calmer, for those… less inclined."

But she was just getting to the gooooooood paaaaaaaaart. Alix rolls her eyes again, huffing as she closes the book loudly and deposits it on the ground beside her chair. The wine is coming.

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