05.16.3013: Life
Summary: Princess Janelle arrives on the Ring. Discussion happens.
Date: 16 May 2013
Related: The Seen and Unseen
Janelle Augusta Cynan Veryna Lyrienne 

Grand Courtyard, Orelle Residence
The topmost pole of the central sphere of the Ring is occupied solely by the seat of House Orelle. It looks like a small domed city, sprawling with a diameter of several kilometers. Sleek and graceful buildings have been erected within this spacious area, allowing for actual thoroughfares instead of the typical walkways and corridors of the rest of the station. These structures include the Guest Residences and the House Library. At the center of the dome is the Spire of Leonara — named for the first High Lord of House Orelle, Leonardo Orelle. It is almost luminous with a pristine white exterior interrupted by panoramic windows and the occasional terrace.

Surrounding the Spire is the Grand Courtyard. Each quadrant of the Courtyard supports its own unique garden and seating. Fascinating, if not a bit strange, pieces have been gifted to the Orelles for their courtyard, including the hovering Fountain of Erra, whose geometric shapes float above a round pool, spilling water over their unique facets with mathematical precision.

May 16, 3013

When the Princess Janelle Sauveur comes to the Ring, it is one of those affairs. There are guards dressed in violet and silver walking in a square formation around the tall and graceful thirty-something woman who is vying for the crown. She is dressed in a long, fishtail-style gown of darkest violet that includes a cowl scarf, the hood fallen around her shoulders. Her arms are completely bare save for a band around her bicep that looks to be the spread wings and head of the Sauveur Eagle. Just behind her is a long, metal sarcophagus-style crate which is hovers on the ground, flanked by another pair of guards. She is walking through the courtyard toward the Spire at the center which is also where some nobles sworn to the House Orelle wait to greet the Princess.

Lady Dalton stands with her contingent outside the Spire awaiting the arrival of the Princess. She wears her usual white, flowing robes holds a golden shoulder-high walking stick. A thing circlet of gold is set on her white hair. Behind her are four Servants of Light, wearing Dalton colors and amongst them Cynan just behind Augusta. She watches the Princess with a smile, but her eyes are far more cold and calculating, considering and measuring the younger woman who wants Symion's throne.

Among the Lady Dalton's contingent is Sir Cynan Dalton, dressed for the occasion in brightly-colored doublet and jerkin. He stands just a bit closer to Augusta than the other Servants of the Light, though clearly still a step behind, and his eyes are set straight ahead. When the Princess comes into view, he looks to Lady Dalton first, then mimics her little smile with a slight upward twitch of his lips. His expression is, for lack of a better term, neutral.

Next to the Dalton contingent is the lone representative of House Larent. Veryna stands tall and proud, letting the loose material of her flowing blue dress pool around her feet. One shoulder is bare, and the other covered by material that hands down to her side and back like a cape; on that shoulder she wears an eagle-head brooch of blue gemstones darker than the dress. Her chin is held proudly, her gaze stoic, and her hand occasionally brushes her side searching for something that isn't present.

"My Lady Dalton of Inculta," Janelle says as she approaches, her gaze falling first on the Lady of the House. Her gaze falls on Cynan and she inclines her head toward him in respectful greeting. "And Sir Cynan. You are both as brilliant as sunlight." She glances over her shoulder as the pair of guards and their delivery before her darker blue eyes alight on the Young Lady of the Larents, and she offers a gentle smile. "And Young Lady Veryna Larent… my. The Vassals of Orelle are front and center." And a bit of warmth comes to her gaze. "I've brought the functioning Hostile as the King has commanded." And she gestures, turning forty-five degrees to look at the sarcophagus.

Augusta gives a polite, formal curtsey, but not very deep. Her age affords her some relief from such things. "Your Highness. We are pleased to represent Our Paramount Lord in receiving this delivery. We have begun work on the tech delivered earlier and look forward to examining a living Hostile specimen."

"And Your Highness' words are as a cool breeze in the desert." Cynan's smile widens, though only just, as offers a low, exaggerated bow of the head. His words are spoken slowly, with plenty of space before each one, and his tone is soft. Behind Augusta, he likewise turns to look at the sarcophagus directly.

Rather than go full-out and give a curtsey, Veryna constrains herself to a simple bow of her head. "It is our great honor to host you on your visit to The Ring, Your Highness. Though I must say, the presence of a living Hostile certain makes me crave the feel of a sword at my hip," she adds with a soft smile on her lips.

"Yes… the Hostile technology," Janelle frowns a bit. "I can only imagine the task you have ahead of you…" She continues to stare at the sarcophagus for a long moment, as if trying to see beneath the solid metal walls of the container before she clears her throat. She looks around toward the Nobles once more. She straightens her shoulders a bit. "I am grateful to be hosted," she answers, her kohl-smeared eyes narrowing at the box. "Living, yes. The Chantry is still waiting to hear if it will live or die though." She glances toward Veryna at her words, and she offers the woman a gentle smile. "I cannot imagine it has the ability to escape that, though… I suppose we also could not imagine that there would be invisible Hostiles in the Arborenin Woods."

Augusta shakes her head, "Couldn't we, your Highness? The Hostiles are not mindless brutes. Infiltrating our defenses ahead of time seems entirely plausible." The older noble shakes her head slightly as she frowns at the sarcophagus. "We are grown too complacent to have been taken by surprise so easily."

"My sentiments precisely, Young Lady Sir Veryna," Cynan remarks, letting his eyes wander away from the exchange between Augusta and Janelle. His gaze flickers over the sarcophagus for a few moments along the way, and though he doesn't speak again, he nods vigorously in agreement with the Lady Dalton's words.

"Just so, there's some measure of reassurance to be found in one's own blade," Veryna comments as she looks the sarcophagus over. "And if there were invisible Hostiles in the Arborenin Woods, we'd be wise to suspect they could be anywhere, on any planet. Being caught off-guard once is our fault and a warning; being caught off-guard twice often means death, when it comes to war."

"The Cindravale share your concern, Young Lady," Janelle replies to the Larent. She steps away from the center of her formation of guards, hands clasping behind her back. "They have already increased scouts in the Plains and Wilds, believing that perhaps there might be other scouts." It is then that the Princess offers a glance around the courtyard of the Orelle Residence. "The Ring and Lashes are perhaps the safest place in all of Haven." She breathes out a sigh, shaking her head.

"And the most strategic, Your Highness." Lady Dalton frowns slightly at Janelle as she looks out at the courtyard, "If history proves true, the Lashes will be their first targets. That they are scouting further in I believe only may be a distraction to turn our eyes that way."

Cynan's eyes flicker back and forth between Janelle and Augusta. Back and forth, back and forth, and he's silent for a long while. When he finally speaks, it's in that same soft, subdued tone. "If there is anything that has been made clear by the appearance of these scouts," he says, "it is that we must be prepared for an attack anywhere, and everywhere."

"Or perhaps their appearance on Imperius suggests a new type of war on their part. They've been repelled twice in their attempts to work from the fifth planet towards Imperius and Primus. This time, they may be using a new strategy, of which these scouts may be a 'dry run' or proof of feasibility." Veryna doesn't sound paranoid, but it's clear that she intends to leave no idea unsaid.

"They are gathering information on us, is what you are saying, Lady Dalton… before they strike," Janelle says to the Inculta woman before she draws a fingertip across her lips, and she nods to Veryna. "Covert warfare. It was something that the Knight Commander discussed with the Council. Which only led to the Master of Ships displeasure that we did not think of intelligence gathering first." She looks to the Lady Dalton. "What do you hope to gain from… it?" She asks as she looks back at the container once more.

Augusta shakes her head, "Further understanding of what technological advances they have made int he last five centuries." Lady Dalton consider the sarcophagus, "We were nearly defeated by their shield technology. We cannot allow ourselves to be taken by surprise by another technological advancement. Imagine if you would if they had developed a means of deflecting physical attacks such as from a blade. The entire Reversion would become moot."

Moot? One of Cynan's eyebrows quirks upward at that, and again he's silent for a long moment. Eventually, he replies, "This is quite true. Though it is also worth acknowledging that, a milennium ago, we found a way to stave off their assaults." His lips press together. "The Reversion is proof positive of our dedication to the effort. We will find a way."

"Perhaps this time, we will learn something new of their weapons technology. If their shield technology was nearly our undoing before, perhaps they've developed weaponry to overcome that selfsame technology. Weaponry we may now, in fact, have in our possession," Veryna with a bit of a smile pulling at the corner of her mouth.

The Princess Janelle stands amongst the Daltons and sole Laurent, though her guards easily outnumber the currect group configuration. There are six total, with a metal sarcophagus-style crate hovering between a pair of them that must contain something about human-sized. The Princess is engaging in conversation with the trio of nobles. "We will have our vengeance," Janelle says in the same proud voice of her father, though none have really been able to surpass the sheer voice of King Symion. "We will find a way to survive this just as we survived the first two." She nods to Veryna at her words as well, her shoulders squaring back a bit stronger now. "I would like to observe some of the testing regarding this Hostile."
You must stop gagging that channel to speak on it.

Augusta nods her head deeply to Janelle, "Of course, your Highness. A group of scientists from the Eastern Light Temple are currently here on the Ring assisting House Orelle in their investigations. We have a lab prepared for this specimen and would of course welcome you to our observing our work."

"Cousin, I could have sworn the steward told me you wouldn't be here for two more hours." Lyrienne's voice rings across the courtyard, clear and sweet as bells as she makes her way toward the grouping. There's a warm smile for the Princess as she curtseys before holding out her hands to the other woman. "You look as lovely as ever. Please tell me someone has seen to you, though?" she adds with a brief frown toward the sarcophagus. "Lady Dalton is ever the expert at such things, I'm sure you haven't been neglected." And that with a grateful smile toward the older woman.

"So long as all necessary… protective precautions are in place," Cynan adds, quickly, as the Lady Dalton finishes speaking. He may well have had more to add, but his attention is abruptly drawn away by the Orelle's arrival, and he greets her with a polite dip of the head. "Good evening, Lady Lyrienne," he intones, simply.

Veryna nods to Lady Lyrienne at her arrival. "Good evening, Lady Lyrienne." Otherwise she remains silent, content to listen to the conversation without currently having anything to offer.

"I spent my time at the Academ learning from a Hostile lorist, though I'm certain I cannot compare to your own scientific minds…" Janelle looks up as she hears the familiar lilt of her cousin Lyrienne's voice, and she cannot help but start to smile with that slight intrigue at the concerns. "Time is nothing I have obeyed, Cousin." Then she returns the curtsey with a bow of her head before she holds up a hand. "The High Lord naturally greeted me, but he has duties on the Ring, I could not ask him to put them aside for me." She offers a seamless smile. "I know my way." Then she gestures Lyrienne into the conversation. "I brought with me… another piece for study." She gestures to the container before she regards the Daltons and Larent once more. "I've asked if I can observe its initial study."

Augusta regards Lyrienne, offering her a polite nod of her head, "I was going to escort the Princess and her … delivery … to the labs, Lady Lyrienne, but the honor should be yours. In fact I ought to depart for Inculta. I have business to attend at the Central Light Temple. I would leave you my nephew, Lord Sir Cynan though at your disposal."

"Lord Cynan, Lady Veryna, so good to see both of you," Lyrienne smiles warmly to the others as well, dipping her chin in a polite nod. She reaches out to take Janelle's hand, giving it a squeeze before looking to the delivery in question with a curious arch of her brow. "That looks…grim," she says after a moment. "But I'm sure there are better people than I to look at it," she admits, smile wry. "Honestly, I've not been to look in on the things yet. I had my fill of it in Arborenin."

"And while the minds on Nubilus are by no means lacking, I'm afraid that Hostile technology is not precisely my greatest strength. That is to say, I certainly wasn't knighted for my problem solving skills," Veryna kids. "That said, I do have matters to attend to on Nubilus…such as selected some of our scientists and engineers to contribue to this research endeavor as best they can. By your leave, Your Highness?"

"As you wish, Lady Dalton." Cynan dips his head low in a respectful gesture toward his aunt before turning back to face the other assembled nobles, giving Lyrienne another respectful nod.

"Lady Dalton, we will speak again, I will come down to the Temples themselves," the Princess promises as she inclines her head toward the Lady of Light. Then she looks back toward Cynan, offering him a perfected smile. "I'm sure I am in good hands." And then she regards the rest once more. When Veryna speaks, she also inclines her head. "Please, Lady… send good tidings to yours." She glances back to the Hostile container. "Was this the one that attacked you, Lyrienne?"

Giving the Princess a respectful nod of her head, Lady Dalton takes a step back, giving Cynan one last look which expresses everything he already knows about what he is supposed to do, and then with the three other Servants, turns towards the exit of the courtyard to start making her way back to Inculta.

Veryna follows after Augusta in short order. The Princess is given another bow of her head before Veryna spins on her heels and makes for the exit of the courtyard and eventually back to Nubilus.

"A good day, Lady Dalton, Lady Veryna," Lyrienne nods politely to each before considering Janelle's question. "I honestly don't know," she admits, shaking her head. "There were two, and mine ended with Tristan's sword in its chest. What happened to them after, I couldn't say. I was somewhat more focused on not spilling my guts somewhere along the way," she says with some humor.

That look is returned with a little nod - not a gesture of submission or respect, this time, but one of acknowledgment. Two of the Servants turn immediately to follow the Lady Dalton; the third hesitates, but after a little tilt of the head from the Knight, he turns and scurries after her as well. Cynan himself, meanwhile, turns to face Janelle, and even allows himself a little smile. "I am sure Your Highness is correct," he replies, spreading his hands wide and dipping his upper body in a half-bow. His eyes flicker over to Lyrienne in short order, a brow ticking upward.

"Sir Tristan has always been a rather dependable Knight, I am told," Janelle says to her cousin before she casts an arched glance toward the others. "My father still struggles to reconcile with what the Council has decided with what the Chantry has requested of him," the Princess says soberly. "They wish us to keep it captive, safe, but given the proper rights of any captive." She looks toward Cynan. "What do you think, Sir Cynan?"

"I'll admit, I'm biased," Lyriene grimaces at the casket. "But I think Hostiles are somewhat out of the usual realm of warfare, given their whole extermination protocol. It isn't as though they're going to send us a ransom so we can send it safely home." She summons up a small smile for Cynan, continuing to explain. "I had a bit of a run-in with the scouts when I went to Arborenin to help search for the missing lord and lady. Imagine my surprise to find I'm not entirely practiced with combat."

"Mmm." It's a difficult question in itself, and the identity of the one posing it adds to said difficulty substantially. Cynan's eyes flutter closed for a moment, then slide back open as he replies, "You are quite correct, Lady Lyrienne, in stating that a ransom is not likely to be inbound. Nevertheless, it is our dedication to the principles of the Reversion that sets us apart from they. If we cannot hold to an ideal even when it is difficult, what use is it at all?" A moments pause, and then he takes a step toward the casket. "To say nothing of the possibility of acquiring infomration of military value from a /living/ Hostile." Slowly, he dips his head in an affirmative nod. "So long as the prisoner is kept under armed, round-the-clock guard, I believe the most prudent course of action is to follow the recommendations of the Chantry." After a moment, he adds, "Said decision can always be reversed, of course."

"Not all of us are," Janelle says in response to Lyrienne's last comment, perhaps looking a shy taller as it is one of the major complaints against her desire to take the crown. She does regard Cynan with a curious arch of her dark honey brows. "You do bring up a point, Sir Cynan… we can always reverse our decision concerning the life of the Hostile, but we cannot reverse its death." Or so she assumes. Can Hostiles rise from the dead? The internal question does cast another dubious look at the casket. "I will bring your words to my father, Sir… perhaps it will help him in his decision."

"As long as it isn't transmitting information to the rest of them while it's sitting there under guard," Lyrienne says dubiously, still eyeing the casket almost suspiciously. "We don't even know if they- What they-" She stops herself, shuddering. "Well. I will leave the issue of what to do with a Hostile captive to those who know more than I."

"A reasonable concern, Lady Lyrienne," Cynan replies, giving an affirmative nod to affirm the point. "If the prisoner in question is kept in seclusion, however, it will have no information of value to transmit. Surely, no matter what technology they have at their disposal…" His voice trails off, and there's just a hint of uncertainty that creeps in. Turning to face Janelle, he replies, "Regardless, I will be truly honored if my words can be of any use to His Majesty," he says, smile growing markedly. "And I would likewise be honored to stand guard over the captive myself, should that be the course of action chosen."

"I will them to him," Janelle says with a gentle incline of her head before she breathes out a sigh and she glances up at the spire with a cool, thoughtful look. Then back to the others. "I'm very sorry… Cousin, Sir Cynan… I must see that this is delivered and then to meet with the High Lord once more." She clasps her hands behind her back as she nods to her guards, and the casket begins to move once more under the guidance of the pair of guards.

"Of course," Lyrienne nods to Janelle, taking a step back. "Stop by later tonight, if you're free," she offers with a flash of a smile. "The children would love to see you."

"Your Highness," Cynan replies, dipping in another half-bow. Afer a pause, he adds, "Good evening, Lady Lyrienne." Then the Knight turns on his heel and makes his way out of the courtyard.

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