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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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A Rocky First Date

Closed W2 D5 HN Etienne Deveaux Daerra Elariel

35 replies to this topic

#1 Etienne Deveaux


  • Clown prince of Deveaux

256
Nessa's Baywrap
  • Age17

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 24 December 2011 - 07:52 AM

Etienne had dithered over what to wear for a while before he had gotten ready for the luncheon. What would she approve of? What would she not approve of? Was blue and gold too loud? He wasn't going to wear something sober, and he didn't have anything sober, anyways. Finally he'd settled on what he felt was a dashing dark green, slim-fitting suit. Then he had barely time to swipe a comb through his hair and wash his face before he had to get going to the luncheon. He meant to arrive early, but how early was too early? He didn't want to leave her waiting, after all.

It turned out that he was ten minutes early, but there was no sign of Daerra; Etienne took a seat on one side of a table for two, and settled in to wait. It was not long - perhaps two minutes - before he begin to fidget, and squirm. He drummed his fingers on his knee, underneath the table; squirmed; tried to satisfy himself with simply wriggling his toes inside his shoe, and then began to bounce his foot. Where was she? She wasn't there, and time was ticking by; already, most of the other guests had arrived. Was she coming at all? Had she changed her mind?

The edge of the tablecloth presented something to fidget with; there was a thread hanging free. In just a few moments he had unravelled it to a fringe.


#2 Daerra Elariel


  • Heir's Sister

354
House Raisaal
  • Age23

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 24 December 2011 - 08:11 AM

Daerra presented her invitation at the door and moved into the manor's atrium. The tables were arranged in rows, all facing a small podium, where the geologist was gesturing to some diagrams on a placard, pausing occasionally to lift up what looked like an atium geode. Servants scurried from table to table, trying their best not to distract the audience from their master's presentation while keeping glasses full and appetizer plates heaping. She had arrived late on purpose. If the Ventures had bothered to send anyone, it wasn't anyone she recognized, and thus no one important, so she was undoubtedly the highest ranking person here. Had she wanted to, she could likely make the geologist start his presentation over, if it had suited her purposes.

Her motive this time, however, was not a useless show of power. No, this was a test for the young Deveaux boy, who looked so much like his more difficult cousin. She began weaving her way slowly through the tables, ignoring the eyes that wandered from the presentation to take note of her arrival. She spotted Etienne off to one side. He'd chosen a table for two. Interesting....

Keeping her pace moderate and graceful, Daerra approached him from behind, so he wouldn't see her coming. As she grew closer, she took note of how nervous he looked, and the state of the hem of the tablecloth on his side of the table. He was likely feeling insecure and disappointed. If she was right, when she arrived, those feelings would change to nervousness and over excitement. As long as she kept track of his emotions, she should be able to control them as well as any soother. "I hope I didn't miss too much," she said softly, laying her hand lightly on his arm as she sat down. Her smile was sly and her eyes sparkled mischievously. "The presentation has been fascinating, I trust?"



#3 Etienne Deveaux


  • Clown prince of Deveaux

256
Nessa's Baywrap
  • Age17

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 24 December 2011 - 05:01 PM

Minutes went by, as Etienne sat there waiting tensely. The presentation had already started, and there was no sign of Daerra. The geologist was not terribly fascinating as a distraction, and Etienne fiddled nervously with the frayed edge of the tablecloth and with his place setting. Had Daerra stood him up?

Etienne had been eyeing the wineglass in front of him and wondering what note it would play if he flicked the rim. Then, out of nowhere, a hand touched his arm and he nearly jumped out of his skin as Daerra's calm, musical tones sounded from behind him. She slipped into the other chair, as Etienne tried to pretend he had never been surprised at all, and was as cool as any cucumber.

She really did a lot better than he did; she looked serenely amused (and incidentally very, very lovely), though she had a glint to her eye as well that made him think she had surprised him on purpose. So he gave up on the cucumber impression and instead gave her his best lopsided grin and a little seated bow. "I didn't hear what he said at all. I'm sorry."

Edited by Comatose, 27 January 2016 - 04:46 AM.


#4 Daerra Elariel


  • Heir's Sister

354
House Raisaal
  • Age23

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 24 December 2011 - 06:51 PM

"Ah good," she said as she accepted a wine glass from a passing servant. "I see you are practiced at not listening. Always a good talent to have at events like this." She swirled the glass a bit, catching the aroma of the wine, and then took a dainty sip. She wasn't all that thirsty, and she never wanted to repeat her perfomance at the Casuana ball ever again. She needed to wine, however, to sustain the proper balance of inattention, and she didn't feel like munching on whatever appetizers her host had decided to serve. With something in her hands and the presenter to divide her attention between, she would be able to give Etienne the perfect amount.

"I like your suit," she said. When she spoke, she kept her voice low, hoping to encourage the conspiratory atmosphere created when making conversation when one was supposed to be listening to something else. "Very dashing."



#5 Etienne Deveaux


  • Clown prince of Deveaux

256
Nessa's Baywrap
  • Age17

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 25 December 2011 - 07:14 AM

Etienne had no idea how she did it or why it happened, but those very simple words, spoken rather casually and with only a single glance at him, made a feeling of elation grow in his chest. He had the strong suspicion that it translated itself to a reddening of his ears; he could feel them warming. It was time to cover that with some talking, right away quick. "Thank you, Lady Daerra! I was going for dashing, so I'm very glad you like it. May I say that you look elegant?" He tried for a charming smile. "I would say lovely, but you are probably told that too often, though it is true." The smile flashed to a grin. "I was sorry that you were late, but it was worth the wait."


#6 Daerra Elariel


  • Heir's Sister

354
House Raisaal
  • Age23

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 25 December 2011 - 07:24 AM

Daerra returned Etienne's smile, and allowed herself the slightest of blushes as she sipped daintily at her wine, and turned her attention to the Geologist. "You flatter me, Lord Etienne. I'd forgotten what a charmer you are." Careful, she thought, Too much, and you'll seem insincere or false.

She had to keep Etienne engaged while not committing to much to the exchange. As always, a balance had to be struck. If she played too much of her hand now, she wouldn't have any moves left for later when more serious manipulations might be necessary. She needed Etienne. Even if he proved useless in her quest to overcome Damien Deveaux, any toe hold she could get with the Deveauxs would be useful. Etienne's cheer and naivete was something Daerra had not found in any other member of his family, and if she didn't use it to her advantage first, someone else would end up exploiting him instead, ruining her opportunity.



#7 Etienne Deveaux


  • Clown prince of Deveaux

256
Nessa's Baywrap
  • Age17

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 25 December 2011 - 08:07 AM

"No, I don't," Etienne said cheerfully, "you've got to know it, and you already know that you spin my head six ways from Firstday, too, or you wouldn't sneak up on me like that!"


#8 Daerra Elariel


  • Heir's Sister

354
House Raisaal
  • Age23

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 25 December 2011 - 05:47 PM

Inwardly, Daerra gave the mental equivalent of Etienne's earlier jump. She had to remember she was dealing with a very intelligent individual. Just because he wears his emotions on his sleeve, that doesn't mean he's naive. Always overestimate your opponents. You can't afford to be surprised.

Daerra considered her response carefully. She had to strike a balance with this response. "You put me in an awkward position, Lord Etienne," she said cautiously. She kept her eyes fixed on her wine, avoiding his gaze. "If I protest I will seem self depreciating, but if I accept such compliments I will seem arrogant. How can I answer with grace in such a scenario?" She swirled her wine and took another light sip, hoping she had shown enough vulnerability that he would not notice her avoidance of the question. The funny thing was, she really didn't know the answer.



#9 Etienne Deveaux


  • Clown prince of Deveaux

256
Nessa's Baywrap
  • Age17

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 25 December 2011 - 05:53 PM

She wouldn't look at him; had that been the wrong thing to say? It probably was. Maybe, worse yet, she was insulted. He was horribly awkward; maybe he had better just embrace that the way he usually did, instead of even trying to pull off anything else. "I don't know," he replied, "I'm not very graceful. But we can just let it go by without anything. I believe in not trying to solve problems, you know. Push them away and they disappear!"


#10 Daerra Elariel


  • Heir's Sister

354
House Raisaal
  • Age23

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 25 December 2011 - 06:08 PM

Daerra gave him a warm smile and an amused glance. Discomfort was good, but not too much. After letting a soft little chuckle escape, she returned her attention to the speaker. Etienne obviously liked people to be happy. He would not respond well to extended bouts of melancholy, but letting him cheer her up should give him a feeling of accomplishment. "I suppose that, in this case, I might have to give your philosophy a try. But I find in excess ignored problems can come back to haunt you. What happens when all of your closets are bursting, and the skeletons start pouring out?"



#11 Etienne Deveaux


  • Clown prince of Deveaux

256
Nessa's Baywrap
  • Age17

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 25 December 2011 - 06:13 PM

"Oh, well, then you hope that none of them smell too terrible," Etienne answered flippantly, "and then it's time to do some burying in the gardens, I guess. But I never had any problems come back to bother me." That wasn't true. Not at all. But he ignored that as well; he pushed the thoughts away and smiled at Daerra instead.


#12 Daerra Elariel


  • Heir's Sister

354
House Raisaal
  • Age23

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 25 December 2011 - 06:22 PM

Daerra raised an eyebrow as she momentarily glanced his way, a hint of amusement glimmering in her eye. If Etienne thought he could avoid all of his problems, that was his business. He would have a tougher time avoiding Daerra. Perhaps I can use this to my advantage, she thought. She still hadn't gotten the chance to find out anything about Etienne's mysterious cousin. "Oh really?" she whispered lightly. "Then I suppose your cousin Damien must not be a problem. I knew he was a gentleman."



#13 Etienne Deveaux


  • Clown prince of Deveaux

256
Nessa's Baywrap
  • Age17

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 25 December 2011 - 06:27 PM

Etienne paused for a second, caught in a puzzle, now. Damien did make himself terribly difficult to ignore. "Logic makes my head hurt," he said after a moment, "you're making me think much too hard. But sometimes it just takes a lot of ignoring. Before a problem will go away, you see."


#14 Daerra Elariel


  • Heir's Sister

354
House Raisaal
  • Age23

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 25 December 2011 - 06:29 PM

Daerra nodded thoughtfully. Logic was a weakness she could exploit, but if she relied on in too much she would run the risk of losing Etienne's interest. "If you were as persistent in your work as you are in the avoidance of problems, perhaps your cousin wouldn't be a problem." Setting her cup down on the table, she began toying with her hair, pretending to think, letting the silence do some of her work for her.

A servant paused to refill her glass, before realizing it wasn't even half empty and moving on. She had let herself get carried away at the Casuana ball, watered wine or not, and she was not going to let it happen again. After the servant and his listening ears had moved on his way, Daerra continued, her voice hushed and tentative. She needed to deepen her connection with Etienne, and that would require a certain amount of vulnerability. "Say your problems won't leave you alone. What then?"



#15 Etienne Deveaux


  • Clown prince of Deveaux

256
Nessa's Baywrap
  • Age17

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 25 December 2011 - 06:44 PM

Persistent! If Etienne was that, then his problems would get a hundred times worse. As it was, he was slowly eroding Damien's patience, but it seemed to be a very slow process. Unfortunately, Damien was very patient. However, he was determined that he could do it, as long as he did not have any setbacks. Sloth was the only thing he would be persistent in.

She seemed to have lapsed into thought, though. She didn't directly look at him, so he watched her play with her hair, twining a stray wisp around one finger. Etienne did not interrupt the thought, but just watched her, bright-eyed and curious. Until she finally said something, and then she almost sounded hesitant, half-murmuring the question. His heart went out to her, and Etienne smiled, trying his best to will her to mirror him, and cheer her up. If he'd had a Smoker around he would have Rioted her, but he couldn't do that here. "You have to step away and leave them behind. If you wait for them to go, they never will." He canted his head to grin at her from an angle. "And you'd be amazed at how they disappear when you laugh."


#16 Daerra Elariel


  • Heir's Sister

354
House Raisaal
  • Age23

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 25 December 2011 - 06:48 PM

Unbidden, thoughts of Aaron and her mother and father came into her head. Could Andrew Elariel be banished by laughter? Would a joke erase the hurt she had done to Aaron? She had ignored the state of her relationship with her mother all her life, and it had remained constant. Don't dwell on your problems she scolded. Use them.

"I'm happy to hear you've been able to solve your problems this way Etienne. But you can't really believe all cares and worries can be solved with laughter. What happens when your problems grow legs and follow you? Or start burning atium and know your every move? I don't care how fast you think you can run, there are some things you can't escape without facing them head on."

Etienne obviously wanted to avoid talking about Damien, so Daerra would gain nothing by trying to force things. Instead, she decided to go with the flow of the conversation, seeing where it would take her. "Take our host, for example. He's looking for funding because he's short on money. If he ignores his problems, he won't be able to pursue his passion. He must be proactive if he's going to get what he wants."



#17 Etienne Deveaux


  • Clown prince of Deveaux

256
Nessa's Baywrap
  • Age17

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 25 December 2011 - 06:50 PM

Etienne nodded slowly. As long as you were trying to pursue something, that was true. But if you didn't want anything, if you didn't have a dream or a passion that drove you, then you could escape everything. Who wanted to be driven? Or to keep reaching and reaching and ignore what you already had? His smile faded a little, though he didn't let it go entirely. He almost never did. "Then if I can't run, if I really can't, then I will turn around and laugh in the face of whatever it is," he said a little more quietly. "I'll be a fool, Lady Daerra. Wisdom just makes you old inside."

"But that would be at the very end. Until then, I'll keep ignoring them. It's like a poison if you don't." Had he said something like that before? "It twists you up inside until you can't even see what's good about life, even the things that you love. You can't seize the moment because you're just thinking about the future. Look how worried he is, how anxious to please everybody here." He nodded at the host. "What good does his ambition even do him? He has something he wants, you can see it every time he touches one of those rocks, and he doesn't even know it."


#18 Daerra Elariel


  • Heir's Sister

354
House Raisaal
  • Age23

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 25 December 2011 - 07:00 PM

Daerra thought for a moment. Were her desires making her unhappy? Could she ever be content simply being, not trying to better herself in some way? Daerra thought she might go mad. Etienne's smug expression was beginning to annoy her, but if he threw back all her points with laugher and quips, how could she prove him wrong? There was a resilience to Etienne, though he claimed to be a free spirit. He was who he was, and no one would ever be able to change him. In that way, he and his cousin were very much the same.

I couldn't beat Damien by attacking him head on, and it won't work on Etienne either. I have to be fluid and versatile if I'm going to stand a chance of cracking either of them. She'd made a mess of things with Damien for now. If she was going to recoup her losses, she would need to do better with Etienne. This rhetoric is getting me nowhere. It's time for a different approach

As he finished speaking, Daerra chuckled lightly, and let her lips quirk into a smirk. "It seems we will have to agree to disagree then. If you are always so difficult, I don't envy Damien his role one bit."



#19 Aaron Elariel


  • Elariel Heir

354
House Raisaal
  • Age23

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 25 December 2011 - 07:03 PM

Aaron entered the main hall, and slid into a seat at the back of the atrium, avoiding notice for the most part. He was late of course. Swamped as he was with his new duties as heir, his normal tendency for lateness had quickly developed into a certainty. He found himself missing the simpler days. When he was second in line, he had few duties, if any at all. And, he'd had Daerra to help him arrange his life. Enough, he thought. She's changed. She's not just your big sister anymore. Aaron wanted no part in his sister's schemes.

Despite this, Aaron still found himself missing their little thieving crew. Those nightly excursions had been among the few times he had been in his element. Skulking in corridors, avoiding guards, and flying with Iron were what made Aaron feel alive, not balls and parties. But despite the friendship Aaron had developed with him, Martin was on Daerra's pay roll, and so the little man had refused him the last time Aaron had gone to him looking for a job. And likely reported our little exchange to my sister, no doubt. Martin had been kind and apologetic, but his answer had still been 'No'.

And so, Aaron had made some excuses and made his way to the Geologist's Luncheon. Without Martin, Lord Rocks-for-Brains was Aaron's best hope for finding a job. Lord Neiselle proved a good target once. If we find out what he's studying, perhaps we can profit from him a bit more... Daerra's words, not his, but Aaron could see the truth in them. Would a theft stop the Geologist from studying atium? Aaron still had the information on Lord Neiselle's defenses from the last job, so he wouldn't need to rely on anyone else. Plus, the scientist had most likely increased his security since Aaron's last break in. Which means it'll be more of a challenge. Just what I need. If Aaron didn't find something to take his mind off of his busy life as heir, he was certain he would go insane!

Not wanting to be noticed or disturb the other guests with his late entry, Aaron presented his invitation and took a seat at the back of the room, and tried his best to listen to the presentation. As he scanned the crowd, he caught sight of a familiar form. Daerra! What was she doing here? Shifting his positions slightly, Aaron took a better look at her table. She was seated with some younger nobleman. By the looks of it, they were having a stimulating conversation. What is she up to now?



#20 Etienne Deveaux


  • Clown prince of Deveaux

256
Nessa's Baywrap
  • Age17

  • Relationship StatusSingle

  • OriginLuthadel

  • Allomantic StatusHidden

Posted 13 February 2012 - 04:58 AM

"Well, no, I shouldn't think anyone would." Etienne grinned. "He's trying to teach an idiot, who'd envy him at all? He has a miserable time of it, my poor cousin."

He tapped his nail against the wineglass, producing a soft ting. Very quietly, of course. Etienne had been wanting to do that for the past several minutes. And the way he had been talking made him feel fidgety and uncomfortable; the motion helped relieve that a little. "If only he wasn't so dreadfully persistent, I'd feel quite a lot of sympathy for him."

Edited by Comatose, 27 January 2016 - 04:49 AM.






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