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The Lord Ruler's perfect capital city, Luthadel, is doing the impossible: rebelling. Skaa half-breeds are being taught the power of Allomancy, something that the Lord Ruler's obligators said only existed in the nobility. The enslaved skaa, with their murderous benefactor, now fight back against a living god's oppression.

So, the Inquisition was formed. The nobles begin to fear assassination from all sides. The times of nobility Mistborn killing each other are over. The Steel Inquisitors look for aristocrat traitors and insurgent skaa, and the skaa try with all their strength to merely survive. The Lord Ruler's perfect Final Empire is slowly devolving into chaos.

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Pity Parade

Closed W2 D2 HN Daerra Elariel Etienne Deveaux

11 replies to this topic

#1 Riordan Casuana


  • Luthadel's Finest Playboy

102
High House Noble
  • Age24

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginAustrex

Posted 02 October 2011 - 01:14 AM

Riordan rubbed his eyes wearily. He rose from his bed, glancing at the grandfather clock in the corner: it read noon. Riordan grumbled. I want my money back.

Did he have to rise out of his bed? There was nothing he could do, with the keep half destroyed. He'd just get in the way of people doing important stuff. Listening to Everett ream him out from actions at the duel didn't seem like an exciting proposition, not after what happened yesterday.

No, there was no good reason for him to get up. Everyone hated him, and not even Kavesh's disembodied voice could change that. It'd be better for him to just stay here, in bed, forever. Maybe if he had stayed in bed, Kavesh would still be alive.

Suddenly he heard someone knocking at the door. "Riordan," Mia said. "You better be awake by now."

Riordan leapt out of his bed, his body alert. "Yes!" he shouted. "Just a second!" Frantically he glanced at himself in the mirror, instantly horrified by it. He tried to comb his hair the best he could and grabbed his robe. His breath would be nasty, but...

He cracked open the door. "Indeed, I'm up," he said, putting a flirty smirk on his face, his appearance be damned. "Miss me?"

Mia seemed exhausted, with deep bags under her eyes that no makeup could truly hide. It made Riordan's heart sink; she needed a hug to last the whole day, he thought. But she smiled, and that, at least, was as radiant as it had always been. "I was getting worried. I knocked two hours ago and didn't hear a thing."

Riordan blushed. "Just had a hard time falling asleep. It's... not really anything you should be worried about."

"I don't believe that at all, but if you say so." Mia said, shrugging. "What were you planning on doing today?"

"Hadn't particularly thought that far ahead."

Mia studied him for a moment, frowning. Did he look just as tired as she did? "Riordan... can I be honest with you?"

Riordan tensed. "Um, of course." What was this about?

She sighed deeply. "You look like a total disaster." Well, that was Mia for him--always cutting to the chase. He grimaced. "I want you to get away from the keep today and have some fun."

"I'm not really in the mood, Mia."

"Don't be difficult. I know what happens when people die. It kills you inside, and..." She cast her eyes downward. "You have to do something. Anything to keep you from that dark well. Work, play, it doesn't matter." She stared at Riordan, and handed him a coin pouch. "And Riordan Casuana isn't really one for work. So go play. I'd really like to see a bit of happy Riordan again."

Mia smiled wistfully. There was a deep pool of emotion behind her eyes, one which Riordan immediately understood. He couldn't help but smile, too. "T-thank you, Mia. That's really nice of you. But don't you need the money?"

"It's not that much. I don't care. I already hired workers to fix the keep, you're fine. So, consider yourself under orders to, I don't know, flirt with some cute noblewomen."

Riordan sighed. He didn't want to flirt with any of them. He'd be satisfied just spending the whole day with Mia, looking at her gorgeous face, her wonderful...

"Riordan," Mia said, snapping her fingers. "My eyes are up here, thank you very much."

"Sorry," he said, blushing.

"Don't worry about it." She smiled again cutely. "But you'll need to look elsewhere, I'm afraid."

Riordan laughed. "Are you sure you don't need any help from me today?"

"Unless you have my husband or a smack to Everett's face, I don't think so," Mia said. "Besides, if I needed you to help around the Keep, I wouldn't have let you sleep until noon."

A husband, Riordan thought. She could have it, if she wanted. But no, she needed Julian, so Riordan pushed the thoughts out of his mind. "True. And I think you're right. The less I interact with Everett, the better. Some air might do me some good." Riordan stretched his arms. Who could he go bother who could compare with Mia? A tall order, to say the least. He'd need someone smart...

"But one thing," Mia said.

"Yes?"

"Make sure she's at least sixteen. I don't have time to deal with another scandal." She smirked.

"I am offended by that insinuation!" Riordan protested. "I would never think of dishonoring a girl like that."

Mia gave him a level stare. "Really."

"Well, I might think it, sometimes. But that's not what I'm doing today! She's not sixteen, either."

"Ah, fifteen. I see how it is."

"No!" Riordan said, his face growing warmer again.

Mia laughed. "Sorry, sorry, Riordan. I shouldn't make fun of you. Go enjoy yourself."

"Oh. Oh! Trust me, I will." For it just occurred to Riordan the perfect person to bother.

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There was something intoxicating about being high nobility, even high nobility that had their Keep assaulted two days ago. They had money and prestige, both of which Riordan would need. He had guards, for Mia was requiring that Casuanas of importance--which Riordan apparently qualified for--have a contingent for guards this week. That was superb. This would not be a one man show after all. But Riordan needed smaller, more concrete things. Something that Great Houses would have in storage simply out of completion's sake.

Craft supplies.

Five guards, ten skaa, seven signs, a trumpet, and a half hour later, Riordan and his party passed Old Wall Bridge. His parade.

"How's dis, Lord Casuana?" one of the skaa said.

Riordan glanced to the man's poster. All Riordan had done was give the skaa some posterboard and paintbrushes, with some vague instructions. Skaa would do anything for a quick clip. This particular drawing was little more than a stick figure of a girl, but one could definitely tell it was representing a female from the size of the chest.

"Perfect!" Riordan said. Not all skaa were bad. Their art could be quite flattering.

Other signs, painted by the nobles, because the skaa couldn't read, included "DAERRA IS THE BEST", "I LOVE YOU", and Riordan's personal favorite, "THE PITY PARADE IS HERE." Riordan grinned. The best part of the signs was that Daerra Elariel would think Riordan was being inherently sarcastic--not Riordan's intent, but entertaining all the same.

He saw the central keep of Elariel rise in the distance. Riordan held up his trumpet, instrument of the Lord Ruler himself. Probably.

"Do you even know how to use that?" Farran Erikeller, leader of Riordan's guard contingent, said.

"I took a lesson once," Riordan said. "A decade ago."

"Oh, good," Farran grumbled. "I thought we were going to look ridiculous for a second."

"I certainly hope we are ridiculous for far longer than that!" Riordan smiled.

Farran sighed. "I'm rather perplexed by this, my lord. What if she is out of the Keep?"

"Then we wait for her," Riordan said. "At some point the Elariels will have to let us in, I'm sure. Or throw us in their dungeon. They serve whiskey to prisoners, right?"

"Nobles and their games..."

Riordan grinned. This wasn't exactly a game--not a political one, at least. This was simply for fun, though Daerra wouldn't see it that way. That was why Riordan needed to corrupt her. In fact, if word about this did get around Luthadel, Riordan knew all of Luthadel would be baffled as to his true intent. Perfect. At last, Riordan was feeling like himself again.

They neared Keep Elariel, and Riordan raised the trumpet to his lips. He imagined a grandiose, truly magnificent score to play, one that would shake the foundations of Elariel itself. He'd remembered that confidence made his music far superior. And so, he blew into the horn. It came out more like a fart. That didn't faze Riordan, continuing his parade to fart forth to the Keep.

He stopped at the main gate. "All right, everyone, let's yell." His group let out a lackluster cry, and Riordan farted again on his trumpet. "That was pitiful." Though, that sort of fits, Riordan thought. "Well, just wave your signs up and down. Yes! Just like that!"

A few guards rushed outside, eyes wide.

"No, no!" Riordan shouted. "Stay where you are! It's fine! We'll wait for her."

Edited by Chaos, 31 December 2012 - 03:34 AM.

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#2 Daerra Elariel


  • Heir's Sister

354
House Raisaal
  • Age23

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 03 October 2011 - 05:19 AM

Daerra was in the midst of gathering what she would need for the Landell meeting when a servant knocked at her door.

"Yes?" she asked impatiently. "Come in?" As the words left her mouth, she realized how she had, and forced her annoyance to. The factions were still shifting, and she couldn't afford to make any enemies, no matter how low.

Luckily, it was JinJin who entered. "Good," she said, grabbing her parasol and her bag. "You have the carriage ready?"

"Yes..." he said slowly. The kandra's face puzzled Daerra. It seemed like JinJin was always bubbling with enthusiasm, and never seemed to shut up. Combined with the higher-pitched voice of a Terrisman steward, he could get particularly annoying at times, no matter how melodious his accent was. Now, however, he seemed to have something to tell her, but was holding it back.

"Well," she asked, not bother to hide her impatience. JinJin was hers, bought and paid for with Atium. He couldn't betray her, at least, not intentionally. "What is it?"

"Well... it seems, that is to say," JinJin paused, took a deep breath, and cleared his throat. "You have a suitor waiting at the gates."

What in the Lord Ruler's name? "A suitor? But who?" Daerra's thoughts immediately went to Lucar Raisaal. She remembered him of course, but she hadn't remembered him being so handsome during their meeting that morning. It's too soon, she scolded herself. He couldn't be here for me. If Lucar was here, it was more likely he was here for Vivian.

Daerra still couldn't believe her cousin had returned. It was as if she was back from the dead. She hadn't actually set eyes on her cousin yet. Daerra had only been back at the keep for a short time, and Alistair had tried his best to keep Vivian's return a secret, likely until he figured out how to handle it. She must know who's behind the attack. Daerra wondered what it would mean. With the delicate situation Mikhail's assassination had created, if the Ventures or Hastings were involved it could mean war. Any Great House would mean an end to Elariel's neutrality, at least for a time. So much to do she thought. There just wasn't enough time in the day. The Raisaal meeting had taken her all morning, and the meeting her father was setting up would likely take up the rest of the day.

"Mistress?"

"Yes," said Daerra, putting her day in order. "Who may I ask is this suitor, you speak of?"

"One Riordan Casuana," said JinJin with a smile. He was obviously relieved Daerra didn't seem angry. "He's waiting outside the gate with a band of skaa. They seem to be carrying signs, and he's making some absurd noises on what seems to be a trumpet. There was something mentioned about some sort of parade." JinJin looked at her expectantly.

He didn't, was her first thought. Of course he did, was her second. The little rat. Couldn't Riordan Casuana leave her in peace? Why was it, just when her day could not grow any busier, that imbecile had to come waltzing in looking for attention. I'll give him some attention, Daerra thought angrily. She instantly regretted it. Even a negative reaction would only encourage Riordan. She had to deal with him quickly and effectively, and for that she needed a plan.

"Lady Daerra... is something wrong? Your face... it had the most... um... murderous expression."

Daerra instantly schooled her features into complacence. If she wanted to end this here and now, she could not afford to make any mistakes. "Get the carriage JinJin, I'll meet you in the courtyard."
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When she reached the gates, she found the band of rabble JinJin had described, and Riordan at its center. Inside the gates, a group of guards had gathered, obviously wanting to get rid of the band of miscreants before they annoyed someone important, but hesitating to lay hands on a lord as highly ranked as Riordan.

"You can head back to your posts," Daerra said as she arrived. "You won't be needed." She watched the guards depart, deliberately ignoring Riordan and his disgusting display.

Finally, she turned, giving Riordan her coolest stare through the gates. "I'm sure that to you, this is some sort of accomplishment, perhaps of your entire lifetime, but some of us have lives that are worth living."



#3 Riordan Casuana


  • Luthadel's Finest Playboy

102
High House Noble
  • Age24

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginAustrex

Posted 03 October 2011 - 05:38 AM

And here she comes! Riordan thought. As she approached the gate, Riordan let out the loudest toot on his trumpet he could manage--a fart for the ages.

She stared at him cooly. "I'm sure that to you, this is some sort of accomplishment, perhaps of your entire lifetime, but some of us have lives that are worth living."

Riordan grinned. Mission accomplished--or at least, the first objective was. She seemed angry even without Riordan's prodding, so this would be easier than he initially thought.

He approached her, making sure his parade still waved their signs wildly. He grasped the bars of the ornate gate and looked directly into Daerra's eyes. "You wound me, Daerra. I woke up less than an hour ago. This is a plan I could come up with in an instant--a skaa could conceive it. I certainly did not come up with this in my dreams. No--my dreams skipped ahead when you invited me to your bedroom."

Of course, Riordan knew how secretive the central keep of Elariel was. It'd be a scandal. He winked.

"But it's entertaining that you think that your life is the only one worth living. I mean, you don't have me to brighten up your existence, so it can't be that fabulous. Beyond that, however, a friend of mine died at the ball, and I'm sorry to say, he was much more worthy of life than you. Hence," Riordan motioned to his group, "the pity parade! Because I pity you, Daerra. It must be pretty lonely by yourself in there."

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#4 Daerra Elariel


  • Heir's Sister

354
House Raisaal
  • Age23

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 03 October 2011 - 05:50 AM

Daerra kept her face expressionless, giving him no hint of the reaction he craved. She had to admit, his words stung more than they should have. I'm not alone she told herself. I'm surrounded by people.

When Daerra spoke, her voice was calm, and controlled, entirely without heat or passion. "You think you're the only one who lost someone close to them at that ball? And that it gives you the excuse to behave like this? Get over yourself. I'll bet you didn't know that one of my friends died in that attack, hmm?" In truth, Daerra had barely had time to register the loss of Laura Bellamont. She hadn't had time. "I also lost my cousin, who was, in case you didn't know, the heir to my house. Because Phyra Venture decided to go rogue, my house's position in Luthadel was seriously threatened, and now I have to help my uncle pick up all the pieces."

Daerra paused for a moment, and let a brief flash of distaste color her face. "You're smudging the gate with your grimy hands. Be a gentleman for once in your pitiful life, and move. Like I said, I'm very busy. I don't have time for your little parade."



#5 Riordan Casuana


  • Luthadel's Finest Playboy

102
High House Noble
  • Age24

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginAustrex

Posted 03 October 2011 - 06:10 AM

Riordan paled. She insulted Kavesh, like it meant nothing. He stood there stunned. In his daze, it occurred to him that he hadn't taken a bath, so he probably did look grimy. But soon, his wits snapped back, and he pressed on.

He looked in Daerra's eyes. As always, they were cold like ice. There was exhaustion in them, much like Mia's, though Daerra tried to mask it far more elaborately. That's all she was--a mask. A black, disdainful mask. And she dared to insult Riordan for actually caring about someone? Daerra?

Oh, Riordan thought, if you want to infuriate me, you'll get it in spades.

"I knew Mikhail died," Riordan said quietly. The voice carried none of its carefree flirtiness anymore, just a sheet of ice remaining. "I seriously doubt, Daerra Elariel, that you give a damn about anyone who died that night. The political ramifications, yes. It's annoying for you. But that's all anyone is to you: an annoyance. So really, since I'm just another annoyance, I have every right to stand here."

Riordan glared at her with defiance, not daring to move.

Edited by Chaos, 31 December 2012 - 03:35 AM.

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#6 Daerra Elariel


  • Heir's Sister

354
House Raisaal
  • Age23

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 03 October 2011 - 06:30 AM

"Of course," said Daerra, rolling her eyes without missing a beat. She couldn't afford to give Riordan any momentum. "Because I'm heartless and cruel, and don't care about anything except political gain. There, you pegged me. Congratulations."

Looking around to make sure no one was nearby, Daerra approached the gates, careful not to get within arm's reach. Riordan really did look grimy, and this was a new dress. "What you mistake for indifference, Riordan, is something called discipline. Not all of us can afford to wallow around in our sorrows." She looked down, seeming to try to hold her next words in, and then failing. She made sure to keep her voice low, but added a the slightest bit of heat. She didn't want to give Riordan a reaction, but she did want to be convincing.

"How dare you presume to tell me how I feel about Mikhail. He was my family, I grew up with him. And now, he's gone forever. I can't change that by crying or tearing out my hair, so you'll have to forgive me if I seem cold. My grief won't change anything, and neither will yours. Unlike you, I've decided to do something constructive with my time and energy." Stepping back, Daerra adopted a commanding tone. "Get out of the way."



#7 Riordan Casuana


  • Luthadel's Finest Playboy

102
High House Noble
  • Age24

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginAustrex

Posted 03 October 2011 - 06:34 AM

"Nope," Riordan said, shaking his head. "Now this is the Riordan Is Pissed Off Parade, and its perfectly content right here. You could say its sole mission is to make people just as angry as it is. Then when people get far enough along, they'll join it. We're like a giant, anger absorbing mistwraith collective."

"So, I'm tempted to stay, delay you incessantly, and wait you to finally call the guards over to imprison me. No one would take me seriously enough for it to cause a real scandal, because I'm just insufferable Riordan. In fact, if you did that, what would happen? 'That Riordan had it coming'? Yes, but that's not surprising, is it? The real shock would be about you. They'd all laugh at you. 'Lady Daerra Elariel, actually considering Riordan's antics! She couldn't even deal with him herself. Why do we listen to her again?'"

"So, please, do it," Riordan said with a thin smile. "If this was shelldry, this would be the part where you bet or fold."

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#8 Daerra Elariel


  • Heir's Sister

354
House Raisaal
  • Age23

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 03 October 2011 - 06:45 AM

Daerra didn't hesitate. It was obvious Riordan had no intention of leaving. He was right, it was time to bet or fold. Trying to reason with him would only weaken her position.

"Guard!" she called, making sure her voice remained commanding when raised. She didn't want to show anything close to distress. "Fine," she said to Riordan. "You want cold and uncaring? You asked for it." Behind her JinJin was pulling up with her carriage.

After a brief moment, the nearest guard arrived. "Yes, Lady Daerra? Is this miscreant bothering you? Shall we have him removed."

"No," said Daerra, keeping her eyes fixed on Riordan's. "Lord Riordan is correct, that would only cause a scandal. Round up some more guards and return. If their are any skaa left here by the time you get back, kill them all. Just make sure not to harm Lord Riordan. He's been having a tough time lately, we wouldn't want upset him further."



#9 Riordan Casuana


  • Luthadel's Finest Playboy

102
High House Noble
  • Age24

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginAustrex

Posted 03 October 2011 - 11:20 PM

Riordan froze for a sliver of a second, before erupting into laughter. It was a bountiful, hearty laugh, the kind he hadn’t had in days--perhaps weeks, long before Kavesh’s death. He laughed so loudly, he hoped all of Elariel heard it.

He'd bedded a skaa girl once, in one of his father’s worst decision. Though the man had grown much more wiser, Riordan would never forgive the man for it. Sharing something so intimate with someone, only to have her slain, was a perversion of everything that holding someone should be. At the time, he had thought that the worst part was that he hadn’t known Lelia, which made the experience awful in itself. But to have her die? No.

The image of Kavesh’s corpse appeared in his mind, with his numerous stab wounds and his charred flesh. He remembered Lelia’s fear, though he had never been shown her corpse. All of this stupid, stupid death.

No. He wouldn’t let anyone die again.

As he continued his violent, dark laughter, he fantasized standing his ground, in front of his parade, flailing his arms to protect the skaa. He could do something. He could save them.

But that would still be foolish. None of them had to be here in front of Keep Elariel. It would be Riordan’s fault if they died, and he’d sooner be beheaded by the Lord Ruler himself than let another person die from his own idiocy. In that moment, Riordan realized that he had responsibility, despite his denied it. It was infuriating.

So, he laughed, if only to relieve his anger.

"You really don't understand anything," Riordan said. "I thought you just took the game of politics too seriously. An intellectual. I liked that. But no, her Ladyship just likes killing things. Classy." He made an elaborate bow. "Thank you for proving my point so deliciously."

Riordan shook his head, and snapped his fingers. "Farran, sword. Now."

The man stepped forward, without hesitation giving Riordan the blade. "Good," Riordan said. He flourished the blade, pointing it in a line towards Daerra's head. Without turning, he said, "Skaa. You've earned your pay. Move along. But, be a dear and throw the signs in the Channerel. With luck, more people will get to see them that way. Don't dally."

He tossed them a few more clips, then they scattered. With his blade still pointed at Daerra, Riordan turned his head to the four other guards. Farran, this contingent's leader, was the only nobleman of the group.

"Guards. One of you hand your sword to replace Farran's, then run back to Keep Casuana. If I do not return within the hour, tell Lady Casuana that House Elariel has murdered me. Advise her to strike back with extreme prejudice." They nodded hesitantly but followed Riordan's command.

"There," Riordan snarled, "no more skaa. Lady Elariel, this is Farran Erikeller. I assure you, he is 100% noble blood, as am I. And I have no intention moving out of the way now--in fact, you implied you would kill eighty percent of guard. I'm rather distraught, and I fear that I can't move my legs. What a shame."

He gripped the hilt of his blade intensely. "I would also inform you that I am most likely able to take on a few your pitiful guards. They're no Caden Hasting."

Riordan grinned widely, like a wolfhound which was about to eat its helpless prey. You picked the wrong day to do this, he thought. He hoped--prayed--that his smile would set Daerra off and attack him. He moved easily into his aggressive dueling stance.

Would it really matter if he died? He lost Kavesh. He couldn't have Mia. His heart was dead, so better he died to punish someone heartless. Riordan narrowed his gaze. Do it!

At that moment, he mused if Daerra was actually considering it. That'd make her seem even more impulsive and foolish than if she locked him in the dungeon, not to mention start war. He smiled. Did she know about what happened with Venture and Deveaux the night of Phyra's death. Oh, he hoped she didn't. How superb it would be to have Daerra utterly destroyed by her own game.

"So," Riordan said, his gaze locked with Daerra's. "I can stand in your way, and we'd instigate a house war. I'm getting quite adept at that. I wonder if the Lord Ruler has a medal he gives out to people who nearly instigate a house war. I sincerely hope I hold the record.

“Anyways, you could incite the ire of Casuana and Deveaux. You could also lock me in my dungeon, which we've already discussed. Or, I can stand out of the way, letting you get to your carriage. On one condition." Riordan grinned. "I ride with you, and you take me back to Keep Casuana."

Riordan felt a blizzard from Daerra, but he laughed. "Because you so helpfully insinuated that you wanted to slay my bodyguards. If I walked home, some skaa may attack me, and if I die... well, there'd be war for certain. Maybe I'd walk into some slums and make it happen, simply to spite you. They wouldn't know the difference. Mia would forgive me--because she's an actual person, with real emotions, but also because those guards know that you had me killed for what? Because you couldn't say 'Why hello Riordan. I'm late for an appointment, could you please come back later?' Instead, I get an icy glare. Congratulations. You got to start a house war from poor manners."

"Perhaps I should deal in politics more. I'm sure I could infuriate you much more in your domain."

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#10 Daerra Elariel


  • Heir's Sister

354
House Raisaal
  • Age23

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 04 October 2011 - 12:24 AM

The skaa fled, and some small part of Daerra felt relieved. The poor creatures were just Riordan's tools after all, it would have been a shame to kill them just to teach their master a lesson. True, she had hoped they would abandon him outright, not waiting for his command, but she could work with the situation. She had to.

Riordan was hardly playing fair. Because he seemed to have lost all concern for his reputation, he could afford to be ridiculous, while Daerra still had to play by the rules. She knew she could beat him anyways, but it would certainly be difficult, especially with her time limit. I will not sink to his level.

Slowly, Daerra raised her hands and clapped twice. "Beautiful performance Riordan. It was quite moving. Believe me, I'm touched, you've managed to strum my one stunted heart string." Stepping forward, Daerra refused to blink, even in the face of Riordan's ridiculous sword. "Let's take a minute and think about what we're doing here, shall we? I gave a few skaa who were purposely blocking my way a chance to save their lives, which is more than many nobles would have given them. I have made no move to harm you or your person. I didn't even get rid of your guard. You did that on your own by telling them to go back to your keep. I would have been content if they were out of my way, and out of sight until after I left."

Behind her JinJin had stepped down from the carriage, a concerned expression on his face. "JinJin," she said, her voice like ice. "Open the gate." The kandra seemed confused, but he complied. As he did, Daerra continued.

"You, on the other hand seem to be determined to move beyond the bounds of propriety, and put me in a difficult situation, even though I have tried to reason with you. Now, you are pointing a sword at my face. You, a capable duelist, are threatening an unarmed woman from a house that not only outranks your own, but also has made an effort to stay out of the conflicts of the other Great Houses. You're right Riordan, were I to have you dragged out of the way before, it would have caused a scandal, but things are a little different now that you have a naked weapon in your hand."

The gate creaked open, and Daerra was left standing defenceless, staring right over Riordan's sword and into his eyes. She stepped forward again, till the point was nearly touching her chest. Riordan was weak, his concern for the skaa had shown that. He wouldn't kill her, not when she made no move to defend herself.

"Should I choose to have you removed now, it would cause a scandal, but all the blame would fall on you. A woman can hardly be blamed when she goes to meet someone she thinks harmless, only to be threatened for her trouble. True, some might tell me I should have known better, that you always seemed troubled and they saw it coming, but my reputation will be relatively unaffected."

Behind her, the group of guards returned. At the sight of Riordan's menacing posture and the open gate, they moved in to defend her, but Daerra held up her hand for them to stop before the situation could get out of control.

"We'll skip over the damage this will do to your reputation, since you obviously don't care, and move on to what will happen to your house. For threatening a member of the first tier, economic sanctions will most likely be imposed until Lady Mia is able to make reparations. Good luck getting a contract in the western dominance until then. Not to mention Casuana's situation in Luthadel will become even more precarious. True, you have the Deveauxs to protect you, and my house wants not trouble with them, but believe me, my family can make things very difficult for Casuana without offending the your little guardians. Besides, I doubt the Deveaux will appreciate the possibility of your actions driving a powerful neutral party into the arms of the Sureau coalition."

Daerra swallowed to clear her throat. She softened her voice, speaking directly to Riordan. "I know you won't care. It's not like you do anything for your house anyways. You've already said you wouldn't mind starting a House War because I hurt your feelings. But think of the other people in your house. Surely there is someone in your family you can find love for in that selfish heart of yours. It certainly won't help your uncle Everett or your cousin Alistair. And poor Lady Mia who worked so hard on that ball only to have it go up in flames. Do they really need more troubles added to their lives right now?"

"You're right Riordan, there's two choices here. I can have my guards subdue you so I can make it to my appointment safely. I doubt you'll get the house war you wanted. Luckily, me uncle's head is far more level than yours. But there will be repercussions. On the other hand, you can put down your sword, apologize for threatening me, and I, out of generosity, can have my guards escort you safely home. It's up to you, Lord Riordan."



#11 Riordan Casuana


  • Luthadel's Finest Playboy

102
High House Noble
  • Age24

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginAustrex

Posted 04 October 2011 - 01:11 AM

Riordan tried keeping himself still. I can be the cool-headed politician that she is, he insisted, but he failed almost instantly. His face transformed red with rage.

How dare she? What made her think that she could insult Riordan after her own threat? Was she really so blind to her own actions? He tightened his grip on his blade. When did the Lord Ruler decide this petulant girl was the Empress?

He shook, lusting to strike forward. The guards would most certainly kill him, but Riordan doubted the world miss either Daerra or him.

Don't do it, a voice told him.

He nodded, taking a deep breath. He shouldn't be stupid, not if he wanted more unnecessary conflict.

"Well," Riordan said softly, "whether you want to admit it or not, you were going to strike down my guard. Considering things from that perspective, I was defending myself from a very large enemy force before me. You had insinuated violence already, what's a man to do?"

"But I am a reasonable man, as well as an honest one. You simply had to say please, after all." He casually tossed his blade into the street. "So, Lady Elariel, I hereby take you up on your kind offer. I was a fool for coming here. You are a delicate flake of ash, harmless, and not to be disturbed, lest it be marred by the ground." He bowed, taking a large step back, showing he acquiesed, but still blocking Daerra's exit. "Lady Casuana is deeply offended by my actions, I am sure, and wishes to issue you a formal apology, two days hence. Over dinner."

Riordan smiled. "Now, before you get your dress in a bunch, I shall not be at the dinner table. I have a lovely date that night. Will you please my take largest apology, as well as her Ladyship's?"

Edited by Chaos, 31 December 2012 - 03:44 AM.

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#12 Daerra Elariel


  • Heir's Sister

354
House Raisaal
  • Age23

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 04 October 2011 - 01:32 AM

What in the world? Daerra was quickly growing annoyed. Everytime she thought she had Riordan where she wanted him, he did the last possible thing she would expect, even if it was detrimental to him. Arguing with him was like grappling with a mistwraith, no matter how she tried Daerra could not quite get a hold on him, and every moment the exchange went on made her feel more like she was being digested by a large ball of goop. For a moment, he had looked angry enough to stab her then and there, and then he casually tossed the sword inside and invited her to dinner with the Lady of House Casuana? Could Riordan even do that?

Then Daerra thought of the possibilities. Mia Casuana was possibly the most powerful woman in Luthadel right now. If she could meet with her in a position of power... who knew what she could accomplish. She would have to prepare, of course, but then, Riordan had given her two days to do so.

Daerra made sure her countenance didn't move an inch. She couldn't afford to give Riordan any inkling of what she was thinking. As soon as he finished speaking, Daerra let laugh escape before quickly stifling it behind her hand.

"I'll need to see an invitation in writing before I believe you're qualified to make dinner plans for the Lady of House Casuana, Riordan. Unlike some people, I have manners, and refuse to show up to another Keep uninvited." Daerra paused for a moment, appearing to consider, though she had already made up her mind. "But... should Lady Mia agree, I would be more than happy to meet and put all this ugliness behind us, since we're being reasonable now. I'll even keep your little spectacle quiet until we've spoken, as a show of good faith. Now," Daerra offered her hand for Riordan to kiss, even though the thought of his lips on her fingers was repulsive, "Isn't it nice when we all behave like adults?"







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