07.06.3013: Importance of Happiness
Summary: Lyrienne and Ellinor shop and have a heart to heart about happiness.
Date: 6 July 2013
Related: None
Lyrienne Ellinor 

Arcology of Sundry, Landing
The Arcology of Sundry rises two hundred stories into the sky, a towering monument to the prosperity that House Sauveur has planned for Landing. The first five floors consist of an open-air mall, the weight of the arcology held up by thick composite girders spaced every thirty or forty feet around the circumference of the building.

That mall is carpeted by natural grass, with pathways laid out cobblestones. It is built like a medieval village, if a medieval village was built around a pillar encircled with five stories of ramps with nearly two hundred stories of department stores and residences above.

Artificial sunlight floods the mall terraces at all times of the year, carefully modulated so as to not wash out the holographic signs that front each store. Giant holoscreens float at the top of the five story open area, showing movie clips, ads, music videos, and occasionally, breaking news.

July 6, 3013

War may be brewing in the system, but that doesn't mean that businesses don't still need customers to support them. Customers with deep pockets and too much time on their hands to spend it. Like Lyrienne! So despite the fact that troops are mustering - or perhaps because of it - she's called Ellinor and demanded that they go shopping. If not for wedding dresses, then at least for wedding night lingerie. "You'll be careful, won't you?" Lyrienne asks, arm in arm with her sister as they walk through the atrium. "Don't go rushing into a breach that could just as easily be a trap, okay?"

Ellinor tried half-heartedly to convince her sister she really didn't have time to go shopping, but Lyrienne is a hard person to deflect especially when Ellinor secretly wants to be dragged away for some brainless fun. She strides easily with her sister as they bask under the light of the atrium, and she actually looks exceptionally relaxed. "I'm not going to be stupid. I'm not Sophie," she says, perhaps a touch unfairly. Then she shakes her head. "I don't know, I have been thinking about it… Nikomachos has really given me a good reason not to be stupid." She actually looks a touch shy at that.

Lyrienne groans at the mention of her youngest sister, dropping her brow to Ellinor's shoulder. "I don't even want to talk about Sophie. I'm keeping my nose out of that hornet's nest." At the latter, though, she arches a brow, a faint smile tugging at one corner of her lips. "Like the fact that it's super awkward to figure out how to be intimate when one of the parties is severely injured?" she asks, fluttering her lashes in her best innocent look.

"Oh," Ellinor says to her sister with a broad grin. "No, we figured that part out. It is more the how to be intimate with someone who is dead." She gives her sister a gentle tug, bumping into her affectionately. "Niko is coming with me this time though. He's volunteered to join the Haven forces. He will make sure I come back in one piece." She pauses as they pass by one of the shop windows, admiring the deep blue dress on display there. "Besides, I have a wedding to go to."

"You too? I have a wedding to go to as well!" Lyrienne exclaims, giggling as she bumps into Ellinor. "There's this girl, I think she's my sister. Supposed to marry this handsome Valen knight who's right out of the latest romance vid. She's a lucky woman. Even if her mother is already starting to pine for more grandchildren," she teases.

Ellinor rolls her eyes a bit. "Do you know how much crap everyone's been giving me that I ended up with a Valen? You should have seen how grumpy Da' got when he read Alexandros's letter." She starts to imitate their father's growly voice. "'My daughter? With a Valen? Isn't there some Khourni out there that will work better?'" She shakes her head a bit as she drags her sister into the dress store. "Think Cedric will be able to make the wedding?"

"Poor Papa," Lyrienne laughs softly, shaking her head and moving into the store as well. She even wiggles her fingers at one of the shop girls. Apparently she's been here before. "One lost to Orelle, another to the Vale. Although I think he's still a little relieved I didn't end up marrying Declan," she muses. "Arboren tree-huggers," she adds in a gruff imitation of their father. "As if people can't live without trees in the way."

Ellinor laughs brightly at her sister, shaking her head. "Always got Sophie and insert younger sister's name here. One of them can be hooked up with a Khourni." She starts to brush her hands across a few of the dresses, admiring the colors. "Think you'll go for Orellean blue or Sauveur purple?" She squints a bit at a rather lovely cynan dress, rubbing the material between her fingers.

Lyrienne sighs softly at the question, looking over the gowns herself. "Maybe something with a cross-weave?" she suggests. "Everyone's likely to show up, and I'm still trying not to be too in your face with Arboren about the fact that I married Ric. I think that's going to be the case for approximately forever, actually," she grimaces.

"I don't know if you have to worry about that," Ellinor says casually as she thumbs over some green dresses. "I hear that the Larents are in arrangements with the Arboren… I think Declan is going to be getting a bride soon enough." She glances over at her sister with a bit of a smirk.

Lyrienne quirks a brow, looking to her sister over the fabric. "Well, I wish her well of him," she says archly. "It's past time they worked something out for him anyhow. And Larent should be a good alliance. Arboren doesn't have enough good connections with the Ring." Because these are all the polite and political things to say about that, right?

"Uh huh…" Ellinor looks over at her sister, crossing her arms at her chest. She narrows her eyes a bit, almost thoughtfully, and then she shrugs. "Look, Lye… it is totally okay to not be immediately cool with the news. You and Declan were, like, childhood sweethearts." She hesitates a bit. "You know, you never told me what happened with that…"

Lyrienne walks around the rack of dresses, moving toward a mannequin. "That's because it isn't very flattering, Ellie," she murmurs, looking over her shoulder with a small, embarrassed smile. "And Ariana Larent is a lovely girl. I imagine she'll find Arboren isn't exactly like her home, but that's what the Ways are for, after all."

Ellinor twists her lips a bit thoughtfully, and she frowns a bit toward her. "Yes… Ariana Larent is a lovely gril." She arches up a brow at her sister as she ruffles through some more dresses.

Lyrienne sighs, shoulders falling. "Janelle happened, Ellinor," she says quietly, examining the stitching on the seams of the dress. "She said something to make me think that Declan was…getting involved with someone else. That Rhiannon girl, remember her? Tall, dark, curvy, had half the men in the kingdom wrapped around her finger. I confronted Declan, and he did what Declan does. He froze me out. So I took it as confirmation, and I stormed off, and the rest is history."

That seems to draw Ellinor's attention, her gaze settling on her sister as she speaks. She leans a bit against one of the dress racks, her gaze unfaltering. Then she frowns. "But… he hadn't… him and Rhiannon?" She sighs softly, stepping up to her sister to gently rub at her shoulder. "Lye, why didn't you tell me?"

"No, of course he didn't," Lyrienne sighs softly, stepping away from the mannequin with a light squeeze to Ellinor's hand. "He's the only person in the system who's always been more dutiful and well-behaved than I have, isn't he? And it didn't matter, Ellie," she adds quietly, shrugging and glancing around the store, making sure that no one is eavesdropping. "I was pregnant, and I was so afraid that I was pregnant that I waited until I was practically showing to admit it to myself."

Ellinor, despite the fact having accepted Cedric's place in all this years ago, can't help but grimace. "You know, you didn't have to marry Cedric just because you were pregnant… Papa gave you an option." Perhaps not an option Lyrienne wanted, even then. Noble adoption isn't exactly easy to hide. She sighs a bit. "I mean… I know you seem happy with Ric…"

"And what, keep it a secret from Ric and from Declan for the rest of our lives?" Lyrienne arches a brow, shaking her head. "That's not the way to live a life, Ellie. Or a marriage. It would have torn us apart from the inside, and that's not what would have been best for Arboren. Not with the war coming, when we all need to be at our best. This way, Declan can still marry someone who'll be good for him and good for Arboren. Which is what's best for Haven."

Ellinor rolls her eyes. "Fuck what's best for Haven," she says to herself. "I want you to be happy, Lyrie… I know the kids make you happy, but…" Then she shrugs. "I don't know where I'm going with this…"

"I am happy, Ellie," Lyrienne replies, smile tugging at one corner of her lips as she leans in to press a kiss to her sister's cheek. "Ric makes me happy, too. I know it's hard to imagine. It wasn't exactly a grand romance. He didn't sweep me off my feet. But we do love each other. It's taken us some time to realize it, but we do." She gives Ellinor's hair a fond tug with one finger as she pulls away. "I loved Declan, too. I did. And there's a part of me that probably always will. But I'm not going to let all of Haven down just to make that one part happy."

Ellinor accepts the tug on her hair with measured tolerance — and perhaps a bit of a smile. She then releases a soft sigh and nods. "Okay… as long as you promise you're happy. You don't know how much it would kill me if you weren't happy." She loops an arm around her sister and presses a solid kiss to her cheek. Then she points at the rather lovely flow of ivory and blue. "I think you should wear that one."

"I am very happy," Lyrienne promises. "Truly. Do you think I would've been able to pursue my music and my Awakened studies if I'd married Declan?" she points out, moving toward the indicated dress. "Those make me happy. They're fulfilling. They're satisfying. And the kids make me happy, too. Although so does letting Mother have them for the day," she laughs, humor flashing in her eyes as she looks back to her sister. "There's more to life than love to give it meaning, you know," she teases. "Although that is lovely. Ric might pass out."

Ellinor laughs, and relents. "Alright… alright… you're happy. That's all I care about." She looks back at the dress, and she smirks. "Oh, fuck Ric… he'll get over it. I think you should get it." She grins toward her sister. "If I'm not allowed to compete in my own wedding tournament, I'll just have to join the unspoken fashion competition." She points at the dress, calling out to one of the shop girls. "Hey, Lady Lyrienne Orelle would like to try that on."

"I meant he might pass out from the change in blood flow away from his head," Lyrienne giggles, bumping her shoulder against Ellinor's. "It's very sophisticated. And revealing," she adds with a flicker of a smile, tilting her head to consider it. "Jewelry would really finish it off, though," she muses, now thinking about it more seriously. "Chandelier earrings, some large bangles. Skip the necklace and let the neckline speak for itself."

"Hey, the more people are looking at you, the less people will notice when I drag Nikomachos into the sitting room for a quickie." Ever the crude Ellinor. She plops onto one of the chaise lounges back by the fitting rooms, admiring her sister's choice of accessories. "I keep thinking there has to be a wedding dress out there that won't make me look like… well… Mother."

"Of course there is," Lyrienne says without hesitation, looking over some jewelry options before she pauses. "Wait, are you telling me you don't have the dress yet? Ellinor!" She sets the jewelry down, turning to her sister with her hands on her hips, stern. "Those things take time to make! To be tailored, to be designed, for the embellishment. And then there are the fittings, and acquiring the materials, and-" She huffs, rolling her eyes. "All right, we are taking you shopping. Now. I'll come back later."

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