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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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Mistborn Series Brandon Sanderson
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A New Day, A New Gown

W1 D4 EM Maks Mia Casuana

12 replies to this topic

#1 Maks

224
Member of Lucille Deveaux's Book Club

Posted 02 July 2009 - 12:28 PM

Maks had woken up earlier than normal this morning to get a jump start on the huge work load that he was certain he would receive later that day. How did he know that he would be getting a ridiculous amount of orders? Simple. House Casuana had announced the night before that they would be holding the next ball. And everyone knows, that when a House, such as the Casuana's, that has recently undergone much 'drama' would more than likely hold an interesting ball, and everyone has to look divine at such balls. The flood that the shop would receive today was going to be huge, filled with nobleladies either coming to purchase a new, already made gown, or to place a rush order for a whole new, original gown. And they would probably even have a few noblemen come in today to get their suits retailored or to have some new embellishment added to their outfit.

But it was all ok, because this (at least in part) was what Maks lived for. He loved his work, and knew that he was one of very few Skaa that could actually say that. And in all honesty, Maks was feeling pretty relaxed before this rush of customers. He had an army (well, more like 8) other apprentices that worked for Maks and his orders, so sewing would be a little on the hectic side, but they would certainly get all the alterations to the ready-made gowns done with time to spare. The stressful part was going to be all of the completely new gowns that he was going to have to make on such short notice. But he wasn't even really worried about that. He had at least 20 designs for new gowns floating around in his head.

In fact, he was going to get started on one of those floating designs this morning. It was going to be gorgeous. Made of a fiery red satin, it would have the feel of a wrap-around. It was a simple gown, especially if there wasn't going to be any embellishment on it, but there had to be embellishment. It was designed by Maks, after all. Recently, the shop had received a shipment of crystals that looked almost identical to diamonds. Maks was planning on using these crystals to cover the entire front of the bodice, and then have a small accent embellishment just above the left hip. The gown would have a short train, enough to be noticed and admired, but not so much that the lady wearing it couldn't dance her heart out all night long. It would be beautiful.

Maks was one of only a handful up and about the shop this morning, generally the shop wasn't very busy right when they opened in the mornings, but Maks knew that today would be different. They might not have ten noblewomen come all at once, but there would be at least four or five of them coming this morning to get their orders in. He took a seat at his station, located towards the back of the showroom. If someone came in to request his services, one of the other apprentices would bring them back to Maks so that he could take their order. So, while he waited, Maks pulled out the red satin for his newest creation and set to work.

 

 


#2 Mia Casuana


  • Lady of House Casuana

102
High House Noble
  • Age27

  • Relationship StatusMarried to Julian Casuana

  • OriginLuthadel

Posted 04 July 2009 - 08:26 PM

Deep in thought, Mia walked with her retinue down Kenton Street. There was much to do, and it drove Mia insane. She'd need to send letters later today to her contacts to bolster Casuana's defenses--the ball was just days away. She'd even need to go near Kredik Shaw to the Canton of Inquisition headquarters. She pushed the thought of dealing with Inquisitors out of her mind. That's later, she assured herself. Think of now, and focus on it.

It was sort of her usual ritual, to focus on the present, rather than the future. The future held insanity. The only way she could deal with it was to break it into managable pieces.

Ash fell lightly. Perhaps she was going crazy, but it seemed like ash always fell when the mists started to vanish. It had hardly been thirty minutes since sunrise, and ash already started falling... It made her walk quicker. She didn't exactly enjoy being around skaa, even with her ten guards.

"Lady Casuana," Raguel, the head of her guard said, "we have arrived. Lan's shop." Mia's Terrisman recommended the place. Supposedly, one of the best tailors in Luthadel, maybe the whole Final Empire, worked here. A skaa named Maks.

"I have eyes, Raguel. I know we've arrived," Mia snapped. Being this close to skaa made her tense. "You come in with me. The rest, stay out here."

Inside, the shop was hardly busy. Mia saw maybe three apprentices in sight. Still, it was a nice shop. For skaa.

An apprentice approached. "My lady, what may we do for you?"

"I am here to see Maks," Mia said in a commanding voice. If she were talking to nobles, such brazenness would have made Mia want to hide in a corner. Now, she didn't particularly care.

"Your name, my lady?" the young apprentice said. He spoke well, for a skaa. Mia wasn't sure why she expected them to all be indolent or something. They were like people.

"Mia Casuana," she replied. The apprentice's eyes widened. Clearly, this shop heard of the Casuana Ball.

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#3 Maks

224
Member of Lucille Deveaux's Book Club

Posted 04 July 2009 - 09:34 PM

The time passed quickly as Maks worked with the beautiful red cloth, though it didn't look much like a dress at the moment. But the gown would take shape in just a short time. Maks knew the process well, and could probably create a gown with his eyes closed. The gown that he was currently making was going to be stunning. It would make the lady wearing it look bold and daring, but still lovely and feminine at the same time. He picked up a few pieces of the cloth and walked them over to a dummy, on which he would form the actual gown.

As he started to pin pieces of cloth onto the dummy, one of the underling apprentices approached, "Excuse me, sir."

Maks exhaled deeply in frustration. This had better be good. The apprentices knew that they were only to interrupt him if an important customer had come to the shop or if the building was falling down around them. "Yes, what is it?" he asked as he continued to work.

"A customer asking for you, sir," the apprentice glanced back towards the front of the shop, "Lady Casuana."

"Casuana?" Maks tore his eyes away from his work, looking towards the blond noblewoman standing at the front of the shop with a guard. So, the hostess of the next ball in the grand city of Luthadel was asking for Maks. He hadn't worked with the lady before, so obviously she had heard of his work from some other noble. "Thank you, I'll see to her."

He draped the rest of the loose fabric over the dummy, then maneuvered his way through the shop towards Lady Casuana. From rumors that he'd heard in the underground, Lady Casuana was a recent widow and had now taken over as head of her House. She would have to be a strong woman to be able to do that after so sudden a loss. In fact, House Casuana was often talked about in the Rebellion's plans. Striking at it during their ball was hotly debated amongst the leadership of the rebels. Maks was still unsure as to which side he would take in the arguement. Perhaps he would be able to decide better after working with this lady.

Maks stopped about five feet from the lady, bowing low to show respect to her station. "Lady Casuana. What an honor to have you in our humble shop," he said, noting that his feelings of hate for the nobles flared up. Acting subservient did not sit well with Maks, but it was a necessary part of his life. "How can I be of service to you?"

 

 


#4 Mia Casuana


  • Lady of House Casuana

102
High House Noble
  • Age27

  • Relationship StatusMarried to Julian Casuana

  • OriginLuthadel

Posted 04 July 2009 - 10:07 PM

Mia immediately noticed the man called Maks as walked through the shop. He had an air of power--confidence--to him, perhaps from his reputation as a superb tailor. His body was fit, that much was obvious, and he wore colored shirt which complimented his strikingly blue eyes.

The way Maks held himself, however subtly, comforted Mia. This was an expertly skilled tailor, not some assassin who killed Julian's father. Mia always respected skill.

She did not have to be afraid of him. Mia relaxed.

"I would like to purchase a dress. Something... radiant," Mia said with a laugh. "I heard you were the best. And from what I can tell from this shop, I have to agree. You take pride in your work, I can tell!

"So... do you have something... special? I would like to put the other noblewomen to shame. You know how it is at the Balls." Mia added another weak laugh, though it probably did not help. Why was she trying to relate to this man? It wouldn't work, even if Mia was more skilled with... talking. As it was, the man probably thought she was another arrogant noblewoman.

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#5 Maks

224
Member of Lucille Deveaux's Book Club

Posted 05 July 2009 - 03:09 PM

Maks smiled politely, "I'm afraid that I don't know how it is at Balls, at least from firsthand experience. However," he nodded his head, "From what other lovely noblewomen, such as yourself, have told me, I believe that I understand your request." He turned around to walk back to his station, looking back at Lady Casuana briefly, "Would you please follow me, my Lady?"

He was quiet as they walked through the shop, trying to decide if this woman was truly a strong enough woman to manage a whole House on her own. If she truly was weak, then an attack on Casuana would be the only smart thing to do. But Maks knew that first impressions oft times had a way of turning out to be wrong, so he would hold off judgment.

When they reached his station, Maks faced the Lady again, "I believe that I have just the thing that you're looking for," he paused imagining his newest creation on this woman. Casuana's figure was certainly perfect for the gown. Her skin and hair would be a striking contrast to the bold red of the gown, and her lovely green eyes would complete the package. Yes, this new gown was exactly what Lady Casuana would need to 'put the other noblewomen to shame'.

"May I?" he asked, holding up his tape measure, waiting for assent before moving in to take a few measurements off the Lady. As he worked and wrote the measurements down, he said, "I am currently making a new gown, one that will certainly help you to outshine all other noblewomen at your Ball. It is going to be made from a fiery red satin, with just enough embellishment to make the dress exquisite, yet not take the attention away from your beauty. It will compliment you perfectly, my Lady."

Maks stepped away from the Lady, looking over her measurements again, before walking over to his pile of cloth to ensure that he had enough of the red satin for the gown; Lady Casuana was a very tall woman. Satisfied that he had enough, Maks turned back to the Lady to see if this idea of a gown suited her, or if she was looking for something more subtle than red.

 

 


#6 Mia Casuana


  • Lady of House Casuana

102
High House Noble
  • Age27

  • Relationship StatusMarried to Julian Casuana

  • OriginLuthadel

Posted 05 July 2009 - 08:29 PM

"...yet not take the attention away from your beauty," he had said. Mia doubted he was sincere. She was much too tall to be pretty. She noticed how Maks was looking through his red satin, seeing if he had enough. She may as well be a giant.

"Um, what do you mean by 'embellishment'?" she asked. She glanced back to Maks and the red satin. It did seem like it would complement her eyes quite well... "I like the red. Fantastic choice."

Her words sounded awfully weak. The Deveauxs would scold her for not acting stronger, but what did she have to worry about? Maks entire life work was to serve nobles. She didn't have to put on a mask of strength.

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#7 Maks

224
Member of Lucille Deveaux's Book Club

Posted 05 July 2009 - 09:00 PM

"Um, what do you mean by 'embellishment'?" Casuana asked, and then after a short pause, she said, "I like the red. Fantastic choice." Maks nodded in agreement, then when he turned around to retrieve the crystals that he planned to use as embellishment, he couldn't help but dwell on how weak Lady Casuana's voice sounded. His assumption about her needing to be a strong woman to run her house was apparently wrong. She sounded unsure, certainly sad, and, in a way, unconfident. Perhaps making an attack on the ball was a good idea after all.

"When I say embellishment, my Lady, I mean something to set the gown apart from all others. In the case of your gown, it will be these crytals," he said, bringing a handful of them to show her, "They will be sewn onto the bodice of the dress, coming to a point at your waist," he set the crystals back on his work table, "And they will also be sewn as a smaller accent on the gown just above your left hip."

He continued, "They're meant to be eye catching, and certainly with the low light of the ball, will be sparkling beautifully, making you appear as a jewel in your own right."

 

 


#8 Mia Casuana


  • Lady of House Casuana

102
High House Noble
  • Age27

  • Relationship StatusMarried to Julian Casuana

  • OriginLuthadel

Posted 05 July 2009 - 09:19 PM

Mia couldn't help but smile at the sight of the crystals. "Yes!" she blurted out. "Do it. I love these."

She gazed away from Maks, off to the wall at her left. Crystals. Perfect! It will take everyone's breath away. And for what she needed to do at the Ball, if she looked stunning, that would be perfect. She grinned. I'll show Venture and Ewing why they shouldn't dare attack Casuana.

"You know," she said, "I came here looking for something exquisite, and you have surpassed my expectations. I mean that."

She paused uneasily. It took a moment for her to realize how quickly she changed from weakness to command, and when it sank in, she shivered slightly. Were her emotions so fickle that a handful of crystals could change them instantly?

She hoped that with these beautiful crystals, they would be striking enough to amaze other people's emotions, just like they amazed her own.

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#9 Maks

224
Member of Lucille Deveaux's Book Club

Posted 05 July 2009 - 09:35 PM

Maks jumped a little at Lady Casuana's sudden burst of energy. So... not so weak, maybe just indecisive. "You know, I came here looking for something exquisite, and you have surpassed my expectations. I mean that."

He smiled and bowed low, "I'm glad you're pleased, my Lady. It is my goal with every gown that I design to make the owner as happy as you are." And he meant it. While he spent half of his days working to bring down nobles, the rest of his time was spent doing his best to make them extremely happy and satisfied. Not only did it give Maks a sense of accomplishment, but it also allowed him to charge more for the things he made, and in turn, contribute more to the Rebellion's cause.

"We'll just need to get a full set of measurements before you leave today, and I can have the gown done at the latest in two days. More than likely you'll be able to pick up the gown tomorrow evening," he picked up his measuring tape again, "Is that acceptable?"

 

 


#10 Mia Casuana


  • Lady of House Casuana

102
High House Noble
  • Age27

  • Relationship StatusMarried to Julian Casuana

  • OriginLuthadel

Posted 05 July 2009 - 10:00 PM

"Take your time," Mia said. "The Ball is three days away, so at latest, I need it by midday that day. Just make it extraordinary." She smiled.

"Have you made all the measurements you require?" After another pause, she said, "...And, um, I presume you take payment at the delivery day?"

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#11 Maks

224
Member of Lucille Deveaux's Book Club

Posted 05 July 2009 - 10:15 PM

"Trust me, Lady Casuana, you're gown will be the most beautiful at the ball," he said as he wrote down a few more measurements. "But yes, I believe that I have all the necessary measurements," he nodded as she asked about payment, "Yes, payment is due upon delivery."

He bowed low, "Is there anything else that I can help with today, my Lady?" he asked.

 

 


#12 Mia Casuana


  • Lady of House Casuana

102
High House Noble
  • Age27

  • Relationship StatusMarried to Julian Casuana

  • OriginLuthadel

Posted 05 July 2009 - 10:32 PM

"Thank you, but that will be all," Mia said. "Except, perhaps, to give you a fair warning: you may want to watch out for skaa insurgents. A prominent tailor such as you might be make for a good target for rebels, no?" She smiled. "Watch yourself."

And with that, she confidently strode out of the shop.

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#13 Maks

224
Member of Lucille Deveaux's Book Club

Posted 06 July 2009 - 07:24 AM

Maks nearly burst out into laugh at the warning that Lady Casuana offered him before leaving. To hide his amusement, he bowed low again, "Thank you, my Lady," he said in a low voice, trying to keep his voice level. He watched as the woman walked confidently out of the shop and onto the now bustling street.

"If only you knew how right you were, Lady Casuana," he said to himself after the door had closed. He stood for a moment, thinking about which way he would side on the Rebellion's desire to attack Casuana, and for now he would remain undecided.

Maks grinned to himself, then turned back to his station to continue working on Lady Casuana's new gown.

 

 






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