05.30.3013: Picture Imperfect
Summary: Sir Agnes is summoned for a portrait session with Lady Sophie.
Date: 30 May 2013
Related: None
Agnes Sophie 

Grand Hall — Palace Towers, Landing
Through doors that are three stories high and which open with quiet grace is the Grand Hall of the Palace Towers. It is a cavernous antechamber that truly embodies the wealth and grandeur of the Royal House of Sauveur — which is why it is also the foyer. The floors are polished marble inlaid with violet metallic accents that could be described as Old Earth Parisian. Luminous chandeliers that resemble white suns float midway between the floor and the ceiling, and they dim or brighten depending on the desired mood. Enormous, floor-to-ceiling pillars are evenly spaced along the outer edges of the room, keeping the center free for feasts, dances, and other events. When the hall is still, it can feel too large and empty, and noises can echo too easily.

Toward the back of the Grand Hall are a pair of mirrored staircases that sweep up either side of the room toward a mezzanine that looks over the grand hall and gives access to the turbo-lifts, and thus the rest of the Royal Tower. Beneath the mezzanine are various doors that lead into the kitchens and Royal Dining Room, where most of the Sauveurs and their guests take meals when there is not an event being held.

It is rare for this room to be empty, as there are at least guards standing watch and on patrol.

30 May 3013

When Sophie heard word that someone was looking to have their portrait done, she instantly followed the trail to its source and all but pleaded to draw the noble Knight Lieutenant. Being a Royal, any other potential artists on the list were dashed to the side and a meeting was scheduled for the event. Sophie sent a simplistic letter asking that Agnes come in full armor, and to meet her in the Grand Hall of the Palace Towers. Once there, a number of items were strewn about in disarray across one corner of the gigantic room. Namely, a large electronic tablet, a handheld camera, a sketching pad, a couple of pens, an elegant wooden stool, a canvas on an easel, and a multitude of small vials of varied colors. And of course, Sophie was crouching there waiting, organizing the items on the floor while her burly guard stood not too far away.

Sir Agnes is announced, and the Lady Knight enters the Grand Hall armored and looking as if she's been scrubbed within an inch of her life by a handmaid, as well as having her short hair tamed into some semblance of a style. She still has eschewed any cosmetics, however. She draws the line somewhere, so she can still feel a little bit in control. She steps closer to Sophie and formally bows, deeply, to the young lady. "Milady, thank you for honoring me by doing this commission for my brother." Lord Sir Tristan is the head of House Peake.

Sophie rises cheerfully from her position on the floor the moment she spots the kneeling form of the Knight out of the corner of her amber eye. A bright and gleeful smile washes across her face, giggling lightly and bobbing her head enthusiastically. She waves a hand in the air, "oh, it's nothing, it's nothing. I'm just overjoyed that you would allow me to draw you. You honor me yourself with the privelege, Lady Sir Agnes." She claps her hands together, "so. I was thinking you might stand closely beside the pillar over there? Perhaps with a hand on the hilt of your sword, maybe even a stool beneath your opposite foot?"

Agnes looks a bit lost for a moment at the idea of being posed, but she clomps over to the pillar and stands as she would if she were at attention in a formation. She then slides her hand to the hilt of her sword. The idea of a leg lifted for no reason perplexes her though. "Can I keep both feet on the ground, Milady?" she asks. Graceful is not in her vocabulary.

Sophie continues bobbing her head merrily while the other woman heads on over to the pillar, a smile still plastered across her pale features. Yet when her suggestions are questioned, she lets out a heavy sigh and a sudden awkward silence fills the room. Her hand comes up to her chin and her lids lower, peering inquisitively at the Knight. Slowly, she nods her head once more, "I…suppose that might work. Not very commanding, if you ask me, but…well, mayhap if you raised your chin to the sky, and stood precisely straight, it would not be so bad after all." The sounds of multiple steps echo through the Hall, until two men dressed in servant's livery slip into view, each holding one side of a large flag. Sophie snaps her fingers, "ah, finally! What took you so long? We have been waiting some time! Hurry, hurry!" The man mutter their apologies, before a two other men approach, each carrying a ladder, "if you could stand to the side for just a moment, Lady Sir Agnes." If given enough room, the two ladders are placed on opposite sides of the pillar, the last pair of servants swiftly disappearing into one room or another. The first pair climbs up, holding the flag in hand, raising it until the ends are a good few feet from the floor. As it so happens, the flag bears the emblem of the Peake House upon it, regal and elegant and held securely by a cord tied behind the tall pillar. The servants pick up the ladders and disperse, before Sophie nods her head and declares, "there we go. Very well then. You may stand still beside the pillar, one hand on the hilt of your sword and chin lifted skywards. Would that be acceptable?"

"As Milady wishes," Agnes confirms. She stands as she was before, and tilts her head upwards, glancing askance at the noblewoman. "Is this all right?" she asks. Clearly she has not modeled for a portrait before. She fidgets, slightly, trying to find a comfortable stance that looks, commanding. "I am normally mounted, Milady, when commanding. I apologize."

Sophie blinks, craning her neck up towards the towering woman, "mounted? Whyever would you be mounted? You are gigantic as it is. No, no. You are perfectly fine as it is. Besides, we are not making a portrait of your horse, are we now? Better to present you alone, steadfast, and commanding by your height and armor alone. Just keep that pose for a short while…" She hurries towards the camera resting on the ground, hoisting the device up into both hands and scurrying to stand at a distance in front of the Knight, "now then. Chin thrust high, remember. You are a proud member of the Peake House, and I shall draw you as one." She camera flashes once, and a second time. She shuffles to take a few more pictures at different angles, until she is well satisfied, pressing the camera's button at least half a dozen more times.

"My horse is better looking," Agnes mumbles under her breath. But she does as bidden, even though some of the photos are likely plagued with grimaces, fidgets, and a bit of slouching after being reminded that she's ridiculously tall. She tries to be still, she really does. She's not very good at still.

Sophie whines out stubbornly, "be still! Be still, Lady Sir Agnes. Or you will be remembered for your anxiety, and not your commanding presence. Do you want to be known as the Nervous Knight? I should hope not. Be still, I say!" She takes all the more pictures when the other woman keeps fidgeting so much, before slowly nodding her head and letting out a dramatic sigh, "that is well enough, I suppose…" She licks her lips, "now then. Time to draw you." She shuffles quickly to the various items strewn about the ground, depositing the camera and replacing it with an electronic tablet, accompanying pen in hand. Rising and returning to the woman's front, she calls out, "Mister Barrow? Please find me a chair." The burly guard with the scars across his face bows low and declares, "yes, my Lady." He marches away, while Sophie herself asks the Knight, "so, tell me a little about yourself. Why did you choose to become a Knight?"

When the photographing is done, Agnes looks relieved, and relaxes a fraction. "I was taller than most teenage boys by the time I was eight, Milady," the woman confesses. "I thought Knighthood would suit me, and it did. I grew up on stories of Knightly valor and honor, and I wanted to live that myself." She leaves out the bit about being teased as a giant and never being asked to dance.

Sophie arches a brow, "by eight, you say? Impressive. I'm sure the boys were intimidated by your height. You could probably pick them up, one in each hand by the time you were in your teens." She falls silent for a bit, scribbling on the tablet, amber eyes flickering back and forth. Finally, she asks, "with such a prodigious height, were you ever afforded a Byname? I was never given one. If I did, I'm sure it'd be bound to be something like…like…" She looks up distantly, "The Sickly One…" She snickers at that, before returning to the task at hand, "so now that you're a Knight, have you become an actor in your own story of Knightly valor and honor?" She sighs, "I always wished to be something of a Knight myself, though even now I can barely run half a mile before falling over with exhaustion."

"I am called The Bear by some, Milady," Agnes responds. She looks momentarily pained at the further talk of her height. "I have done my duty. If some view my duty to be valorous and honorable, then I am fit to wear these spurs." Truly, she has done many things, trained others, fought in skirmishes, and conducted rescue missions. Her most recent one was after the volcanic eruption in February. "Being a Knight is not suited to all, nor should it be. Haven would be a sorry place without art and music, science and study."

Sophie smiles and nods her head idly, "The Bear. Fitting. Ferocious. Intimidating. Yet in a way, quite regal. I should nearly include some mention of a bear in the drawing. I wonder…" She smiles, laughing softly as the other woman speaks so humbly of her accomplishments, "you sound like my guard, Sir Caedmon Barrow." She smiles brightly however when told of how good the arts are for the society, looking of proudly from her tablet, "I very much agree, Lady Sir Agnes. Though with the Hostiles arriving, I would wonder at the worth of such skills for our generation." She sighs, nodding her head, "that does it then. I think I might find a way to include a bear in the portrait, in some fashion…perhaps pictured over your armor…" And the Sir Barrow comes marching back, lacking a chair in his hand. She glances to him, frowning in confusion, "Sir Barrow? Where is my chair? I thought I to-" The man interrupts by replying, "my Lady, your mother Princess Evony is expecting you at once." Sophie frowns even deeper, slouching with worry and annoyance, "but I was…I am…" She sighs, looking to the other woman once more, "please, forgive me, Lady Sir Agnes. It would seem there is a…conflict of interests in this house…please, I shall send a missive when next we might meet, after I have decided about the bear…again, I apologize for abruptly sending you away. But I shall work on your drawing in the interim."

"Some of us fight, but we need something to fight for, Milady. The preservation of our loved ones, the preservation of our culture and way of life. If life were a thing bland and uninteresting, who would fight on its behalf?" Agnes points out. She bows again, as the woman is summoned away. "Thank you, Milady. I can show myself out."

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