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The Laeken Garden Party (IC|TG to Enter)

Where nations come together and discuss matters of varying degrees of importance. [In character]

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Beliany
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Posts: 156
Founded: Dec 07, 2016
Ex-Nation

Postby Beliany » Wed Apr 29, 2020 4:30 pm

Christopher made his way through the crowd with no real direction, and half looking for his brother. He was always trying to make sure that his little brother socialized. Philippe had a tendency to hide in the shadows and just watch life go by. In a weird way. Even the members of their own family had a bit of a shiver when it came to Philippe. His little brother had scared people more than once with his ways. So Christopher tried to correct any social listing that might occur with his brother.

So he was still searching for his brother when he felt someone half-brush half-bump against him. Christopher straighten, turning to find a young woman trying to apologize. For a moment Christopher was angry. This had happened before. When one was a Prince, for some reason the likelihood of a young man 'accidentally' bumping into you seem to skyrocket. It had taken only a few of such incidents like that for Christopher to find that they were doing it own purpose. Social climber looking to make a meet cute with a Prince.

Christopher turned waving his hand dismissively as she curtsied. The Belian monarchy didn't require people to bow and curtsy anymore. Christopher's father and his PR department had decided on it in order to make the public feel more at ease and the royals more approachable. King Leopold seemed hesitant to accept such changes, and most people seemed to forget or entirely oblivious to such rules. Or rather lack of rules. Christopher was about to correct her, and decline her offer of a drink when something caught his attention.

As the drone whirled and hovered over Princess Alana's shoulder, Christopher's jaw dropped. His blue eyes widen as he stared that drone. His lips formed a soft O-shape as said, "Whoa." All anger at the bump and frustration at his father instantly dissolved, giving way instead to absolute fascination at the drone. He almost entirely forgot about the young woman that the drone both belonged too and was hovering over. That is until he caught the back end of what she was actually saying. His attention jerked to her quickly.

"No!" Christopher said a bit too loudly. A few of the guests shock looks at him, watching him. "Sorry, I mean, no. No, don't shut him down. I mean. Whoa." Christopher turned his attention back towards the drone. "What did you call it? Malx? Does it stand for anything? You also said him, you gendered it? Err, him. Why? Did you make him? How do you control him?" Christopher stepped closer towards the drone, halfway reaching out to touch it, observing the device with clear interest, resisting the urge to take pictures of his own.

While Christopher stood mesmerized by Alana's drone, his father continued his conversation with his husband. Leopold smiled, gesturing with his knuckles. He had expected Maximilian to ask that exact question. It was why he had asked the question. It exactly proved his point about the importance of dynastic marriage. "Exactly, my darling. The Albrets are the insignificant counts that my sister Catherine married into. And I love my nephews, but I am a realist, and know that life is tough for people with crowns and tiara and diadems."

Leopold tipped his hat to another one of the guests. "My mother was controlled by her mother, I was controlled by my own mother, and I will be damned if my own children are not by me."

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Aravea
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Founded: Oct 31, 2011
New York Times Democracy

Postby Aravea » Wed Apr 29, 2020 6:55 pm

Alana nodded as she motioned for Malxeris to move toward the prince, with him coming to a half in between the two of them. His azure eye scanned the prince carefully, all the while he gave a happy chirp as he did. Alana smiled as she spoke, her mind filled with memories of Malxeris’s creation, “Yes, I did. Malx or rather his full name Malxeris, whichever you prefer, is a male AI who is based on the neural map of one of my ancestors who shares the same name. That is why I gendered him. After all, it would be an insult for me to not use his given gender considering that his neural template was male.” The princess smiled as Malx gave a content warble, spinning around the princess as if he were quite pleased with Alana’s comment. The drone moved closer to the prince once more, coming to a rest in the palm of his hand while his sapphire eye continued to regard Christopher with fascination, “As for your other question, yes I built Malxeris. I suppose you could say that he serves as my assistant and as a sort of pet. He’s admittedly rather crude for what he is, but he serves his purpose for now. Between you and me, I am hoping to upgrade him into a more elaborate version soon that will be larger with a more capable AI core.”

The Aravean gave a smirk as she heard the prince ask about how Malxeris was controlled, something which she would be all too happy to demonstrate. Truth be told, while Malxeris was mostly capable of independent action he could be controlled by Alana if need be. It was a function she preferred not to use as she felt it was a little cruel, but nonetheless she could not deny its usefulness in certain situations, “Normally Malxeris is capable of limited independent action after being issued a voice command and is able to adjust said command if need, but I can control him manually through my bracelet. See…” Alana tapped the socket from which Malexeris had emerged twice, causing what appeared to be a holographic interface to be projected from it. The interface contained three screens, each showing a different view in a different wavelength, “ I can control him via this interface if need be, but the bracelet I have also allows me to issue mental commands as well if I so desire. Anyways...If you’d like, I could allow you to try your hand at controlling Malxeris. Oh and do not be afraid to take pictures or touch him if you’d like.”

Alana moved to Christopher’s side, getting just close enough to allow him to be able to use the holocontrols that were being projected from the bracelet. She smiled, seemingly happy that someone was appreciating the amount of work that had gone into crafting Malxeris. The princess pointed to the lower half of the display, showing what appeared to be a large control yoke surrounded by a number of readouts and topographic data. “You just use the central yoke there and it will allow you direct control over most of Malx’s functions. Or if you prefer I can set it up so you can use voice commands. Um...also forgive me for imposing, but I take it that you are quite the drone enthusiast, yes? If you don’t mind me asking, what sort of drone models do you use here in Beliany? Do they compare at all to Malxeris or are they more advanced?”
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Royal Genes
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Founded: Feb 26, 2015
Ex-Nation

Postby Royal Genes » Wed Apr 29, 2020 9:24 pm

The Dauphine of Genes had a wide smile on her face as she moved to meet her Belian counterpart. She let go of her younger brother and held out her hands as if to hug the Duchess of Brabant. However, instead of hugging, as the pair met, they engaged in a faire la bise. The Dauphine did so twice, gently kissing Sofia’s cheeks with a joyful laugh. It was so great to see Sofia once again. They had grown up together in Derita along with the rest of the Deritain and Scottish royal families— among a few other children from various royal families.

“Sofia, you have only grown more and more gorgeous!”

The Dauphine didn’t think Sofia was the most beautiful of the Royal Scottish sisters, she would say the Duchess of Berwick was, but Sofia was certainly the nicest, and it made glow with a sort of halo that made her seem like an angel. Sofia was only a few years older than the Dauphine, but she had always admired her cheerful demeanor. She was almost envious of it. The Dauphine had so much responsibility that she couldn’t afford much of the joy that the Duchess of Brabant had. But she couldn’t possibly hold any ill will towards Sofia. She was Sofia.

“That dress makes you look absolutely queenly, you have such a fine eye for fashion. Have you considered patronizing any house? I know a few Gênoise designers who—”

The Dauphine wanted to say: ‘would hurl their grandmothers out of a 150 story window just to see you in one of their dresses’. What she said was:

“Be over overjoyed at the chance to see you in one of their dresses.”

Both were true. Though the former, in the Dauphine’s mind, was the more accurate representation of things. The Gênoise were always interested in Beliany, and Sofia in particular, on both a geopolitical scale and a social one. The Dauphine reflected these national interests in her own personal ones.
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Beliany
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Founded: Dec 07, 2016
Ex-Nation

Postby Beliany » Thu Apr 30, 2020 2:15 am

Christopher’s eyes never left Malx, Malxeris, as he listened to Alana. He just barely resisted the urge to squeal like a little kid meeting someone’s puppy as Malx landed in his palm. He studied the drone’s orb like eye with as much intent and fascination that it seemed to do him. It was truly a remarkable piece of work. He could see what she meant that he was sort of like a pet. It was cute. In an AI robot drone kind of way. Luckily for Malx that was Christopher’s favorite way of cute. He was honestly impressed.

“That is absolutely amazing!” Christopher said excitedly. “I’ve never considered an expansive AI core at the center of one of my drones operational networks before. I my brother says AI are destined to one day turn on us humans and kill us all in a flawed but mostly efficient manner. I think he has watched too many old movies. But Malxeris here is just so adorable, I don’t think I’d mind.” Christopher let out a soft laugh, holding Malx up to eye level. The Prince then proceeded to have a staring contest with the drone. At least that’s what it might have looked like.

In truth the Prince was taking pictures with his prosthetic eye. When he had lost his eye as a child, he had thought it only far that he get the best possible replacement eye. And no doubt his father had felt guilty about the accident and decided to make it up to him. Christopher’s eyes he had found, and altered to do so, has many functions. But his favorite was photographing and recording. With minimal effect he could do so with his eye, and it was all saved to his personal cloud network. A subject of the Belian royals’ personal networks. With wolves for paparazzi secrets had to be more aggressively protected.

“The coding structure you came up with must have been amazing. I would love to see it.” Christopher said. “I don’t think your bracelet controls are all too different from my eye’s. Oh. I have an artificial eye.” Christopher added quickly. He found that most people didn’t realize and got confused when he said things like that. His own grandmother occasionally forgot and once he had damn near made the former empress faint when he took out his eye to tinker with it. “Though I still would love to get a try of testing yours out. If that’s okay with you. I mean, most commercial drones are league behind Malx here, and even my drones pale in comparison. You are just...” Christopher paused, for the first time looking away from the drone to the woman standing at his side, showing the controls from the bracelet. “...out of this world.”

“I’m sorry, I kind of zone out there. I, Uh, am a drone enthusiast, as you can probably tell. I don’t think I actually caught your name. Christopher, by the way.” He went back to crouching Malx as he offered Alana his free hand.

As Christopher fell under the spell of an Aravean drone, Sofia happily kissed the Dauphine’s cheeks, delighted to see her old friend. Sofia, the social butterfly that she was, had a network of friends from Bledapestra to Moskva, and everywhere inbetween. The Dauphine was like family to her, a cousin who had such gorgeous hair. Sofia could believe how beautiful the Dauphine had become firm that shy little girl back in Derita. And now here she was, a fellow future queen. Who could have predicted. Sofia laughed and waved her hand in a jokingly dismissive way as the Dauphine tried to guilt her into patronage.

“I can’t. It’s against protocol. Besides, Gênoise designs? All of Brusek would have a fit. I’m must safer which my current selection, but that just means that you get to hog all those fabulous dresses for yourself. Though I suppose anything that you wear would look amazing, or rather be paled in compared to your own natural beauty. It is a shame you cover up so much. I must say, I miss the days when the Gênoise cared more about glamor than God.”

All of northern Beliany, especially the port city of Adelaide, had watched with fixated horror as the Genes of old, with its glittering glided over the top opulence had been pushed aside. Aside for religious orthodoxy and education for the general public. Beliany was a most devoted Catholic kingdom- or at least, though who were devote, were catholic. Gênes. No so much. Their own brand of Orthodoxy was a foreign one. And the racial policies that had cropped up alongside it startled half of the Belian population. After all, Gênes was a mere skip away. What if such ideas spread here?

Sofia doubted that would happen. She was more concerned—as many middle class people were—if not to Gênes to party, then where would they go? “Though, just because I can’t patron any of your country’s fashion houses, doesn’t mean they can’t try to win me over.” Sofia have the Dauphine a playful wink. At this Baudouin huffed, and crossed his arms. He reminded Sofia of a teenage boy brooding because the adults were talking. Well. They were. Both the Dauphine and Sofia were years older than Baudouin, and honestly he could learn something from them. Not that he would, the stubborn mule. That was something Sofia felt she shared with the Dauphine. Stubborn husbands stuck in their ways.

“Your Royal Highness,” Sofia said amicably, waving a hand to her husband, “You remember my husband, Baudouin, Duke of Brabant.”

Baudouin managed to not scowl, bowing to the Dauphine of Genes. Baudouin hated all his wife’s Deritain friends. He loathed the Gênoise sense of superiority. Never mind the fact that the Gênoise empire had been built on the backs of slaves and racial discrimination ran rampant in their obnoxiously luxurious and holy-than-thou mega-metropolis. And the Dauphine respected both. But the Gênes were a galactic superpower that could send a single ship to destroy all of Beliany and the Dauphine was the woman in charge of those fleets of ships, so he had to play nice.

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Aravea
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Founded: Oct 31, 2011
New York Times Democracy

Postby Aravea » Thu Apr 30, 2020 10:50 am

Alana could not help but giggle at the Prince’s enthusiasm for Malexeris, with the sight of the prince being locked in staring contest almost bringing her to the edge of a full blown laughing fit. She had to admit that it reminded her of seeing a small child on Christmas or when he received his first pet. She gave a warm smile as he complimented her handiwork, all the while trying to suppress a faint blush that only grew more noticeable as he continued to lavish praise upon her and Malxeris. To have someone do as such and a royal that, was quite the reward after the grinding months of hard labor that had gone into programming and upgrading Malx’s core and various subroutines. That was without even mentioning the weeks of hand crafting a custom shell for him, as well as the minute adjustments that were required to get everything working properly, “Thank you, Christopher. You do me a great honor with your words. As for AI taking over, you need not worry about that. Little Malx here enjoys being people too much to even consider seizing control of anything….Well aside from our hearts that is. Isn’t that right boy?” The drone, who at this point seemed to have grown accustomed to Christopher’s grasp, responded with a happy chirrup before letting out a short song for the Prince.

Alana nodded as she listened to Christopher mention his artificial eye, seemingly somewhat intrigued at what the particular capabilities of his eye were. She had seen such cybernetics before during the course of her studies, with her having met the occasional palace guard or professor who made use of one. Admittedly they most likely paled in comparison to Christopher’s but they were fascinating nonetheless given all that one could accomplish with one, especially in the fields of art or the applied sciences. Hell, with such an eye one could easily rival some of the world’s leading photographers for sheer quality. The princess continued to listen to Christopher as he spoke about the drones of Beliany and how compared to her own, with her seemingly being a little disappointed that they lagged so far behind. Yet with that being said, she could not help feel as if there were an opportunity to rectify that if she were given the chance. Regardless, the princess was shaken from her thoughts as Christopher gazed at her and offered her his hand.

Truthfully she had not expected him to do as such, given how he had seemingly been fixated on Malxeris for most of their conversation. Alana took Christopher’s outstretched hand, all the while she returned his gaze with her own cerulean orbs that glinted in the sunlight, , “You can call me Alana, Christopher. Um...forgive me for saying this, you are yourself are quite the intriguing individual. I never imagined that I would meet not only a fellow drone enthusiast here, but especially not one who is so fascinating to talk to. Most of the ones I have met lack your level of enthusiasm for it, let alone the more technical aspects of what are involved creating a drone. As for showing you my coding structure, I would be more than happy to give you a peek later on today."

Alana fell silent for a moment as she scanned the area around her, so as to determine .whether or not the pair of them could test out Malx in their immediate surroundings. It seemed as if there was enough room, but there was also the possibility that if they did it here it could end disturbing some of their fellow attendees. It would not do for her to cause a ruckus, even if she and Christopher would be enjoying themselves while doing so. With a faint smile, she spoke to the prince, "Christopher, if I may be so bold as to make a suggestion, perhaps we can head to a less crowded area of the garden to test Malx out? That way we are not disturbing any of the other guests. Also, I would be quite intrigued to hear more about these drone of your's. If you'd like I could potentially improve their performance to match the performance of what we have back home." The princess gave Christopher a slight smile as she waited for him to lead on, all the while her heart was filled with joy at the prospect of seeing Christopher try out Malxeris. If his reaction to him earlier was anything to go by, it would certainly be make for an entertaining time at the very least.
Last edited by Aravea on Thu Apr 30, 2020 12:23 pm, edited 5 times in total.
Proud Deputy Speaker of the INTERNATIONAL FREEDOM COALITION!
★★★Proud Intelligence Minister of the United Monarchist Alliance★★★
Note: Currently in the process of overhauling the Aravean factbooks/canon.

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Royal Genes
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Founded: Feb 26, 2015
Ex-Nation

Postby Royal Genes » Thu Apr 30, 2020 11:36 am

The Dauphine laughed as she listened to Sofia. She agreed with her on some points. Her husband was certainly quite the zealot. The Dauphine didn't particularly care about religion, though in public she supported her husband one hundred percent. Though, only if the topic was brought up. She had learned the artful skill of avoiding the subject. It was not as if Sofia meant any harm in saying Gênes had turned more towards God than glamor. A temporary truth now that her father in law was in charge.

King Frederick II would bring back the glided age of old. It was bound to send the tourism industry soaring once the mourning period was over for Queen Adela. That would undoubtedly lead back to a good steady flow of Belians flicking north to Gênes to blow off some steam. To the delight of both sides. The Dauphine turn to the Duke of Brabant with a smile. Baudouin was not a bad person, just had an attitude problem. But Sofia was the best part of him. The Dauphine had dealt with far worse.

"Of course, it is so good to see again Your Royal Highness. Your father has done a marvelous job at setting up this party. The gardens here are so wonderful."

The Dauphine turned, putting her hand on her brother's arm. While Sofia and the Dauphine were friends, the Dauphine and Nukai were half siblings, and Nukai and Baudouin were cousins. It was a nice symmetry in social connections. With a polite smile, the Dauphine looked to the couple, "Your Royal Highness, my dearest Sofia, you of course remember my little brother, Nukai. He was gracious enough to accompany here whilst my beloved husband is still in mourning for his beloved grandmama."
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Beliany
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Founded: Dec 07, 2016
Ex-Nation

Postby Beliany » Thu Apr 30, 2020 3:34 pm

Christopher laughed as Malx chirped in his palm. He was flattered by Alana’s words. He too found it hard to find people who shared his love for drones. Not because there was a particular lack of such groups, but they were hard for him to be apart of. Especially with his father’s overprotectiveness. The King wanted his son to be around socially acceptable companions, and it was simply a fact that few of the people who met the King’s criteria shared the prince’s interests. Alana was like... a unicorn.

“I’m not all that fascinating,” Christopher said with a blush that turned his pale cheeks a soft pink. He had never met someone who had called him fascinating for his passion for drones, both creating and using them. Most would have probably called him boring at best or weird at worse. Though he figured probably not to his face. “I think you...” Christopher trailed off, not sure exactly as to what he wanted to say. He felt that calling Alana fascinating would be lame. Calling her a unicorn would be weird.

He looked away, back to the crowds, among which several were not so secretly watching them. Unbeknownst to Christopher and Alana, several were switch bets. Sophie van Tieghem and Étienne de Rhodeste watched the young pair with great interest, whispering to one another. Could it be that the neutral girl would did her claws into the Prince first? And do you hear them laughing. Were they talking about drones? Christopher could not hear their conversation, instead he assessed that Alana had a point and that this probably wasn’t the best place for this.

“In think you are right.” Christopher finished, looking back to Alana. He gestured to the glass domes of the Queen Cécile Botanical Gardens looming over the tree line. “We can go into the greenhouse. There shouldn’t be many people in there yet. And the domed are tall enough for Malx to fly around comfortably, come, I’ll show you.” Christopher dropped his palm slowly, letting Malxeris take flight, and gestured for Alana to followed as he headed down the path towards the greenhouse.

Of course this only sent more ripples of gossip through the crowd. The Prince and the Aravean princess wondering off into the gardens? What could it mean? Had that not been exactly how Christopher’s aunt and uncle met? Sneaking away in a palace garden?

“I certainly hope it is not over before it’s begun,” said Mother Anissa Delporte, who had done great work in helping build homeless shelters in the southeast of the country. She was a beloved public figure. And also a total gossip.

“Surely not,” said Vincent de Nassars plucking up a drink. “This not a race, but a hunt. The princesses are the huntresses and our dear Prince is the boar. Just because one is the first to strike the boar does not mean that they are the one to win the hunt.”

Baudouin nodded his head towards his cousin. He held no ill will towards his cousin, not like he did Nukai’s half-sister, who was decidedly and thankful not his blood relative. Sofia meanwhile beamed at Nukai. She let her eyes drift lazily up and then down the Russen Grand duke’s form, fondly remembering when Nukai had stayed with them all for several weeks. Her eyes rested more so on his broad shoulders as opposed to his face as she spoke. “Nukai, it is, such a pleasure see you. You’ve grown so much I see, into such a strapping young man.”

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Russlande
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Founded: Jul 16, 2014
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Postby Russlande » Thu Apr 30, 2020 4:37 pm

Nukai winked at Sofia playfully as he noticed her eyeing him.

"Hey Sofie."

The Grand Duke spoke with a flirtatious teasing tone. Nukai, unlike his sister the Dauphine had not grown up with Sofia of Scots. Whilst she had grown up in the most glamourous palaces in Derita, Nukai had been raised in the naval forces of the Russen Empire. Nonetheless the pair had gotten to know one another quite well when he was seventeen and visiting his uncle and cousins, not long after Sofia had married Baudouin. He had greatly enjoyed their time together, and it seemed that Sofia did so as well from the way that she was looking at him. He shifted the gift bag, extending his arm to let it drop from his elbow down into his fingers. Nukai looked away from Sofia, turning to his older cousin and hugging him.

Nukai would have easily guessed that Baudouin was not the hugger type. The man was like a human thundercloud. Or a very grumpy cat. Especially compared to Sofia's sunshine and puppy-like personality. So unamicable. Which was precisely why he hugged him. His cousin needed to learn how to loosen up. Express a little emotion. It was good for him. Nukai squeezed his cousin tightly in his arms, laughing playfully as he did so. Nukai, after a few seconds, pulled away, holding up the bag for Baudouin to see, a bright white smile on the grand duke's face.

"Baudouin! It's great to see you! I come bearing gifts."

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Aravea
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Postby Aravea » Thu Apr 30, 2020 7:53 pm

Alana felt a great weight lifted from her as she and Christopher made it into the greenhouse as they could at last speak freely. From what she could hear, gossip and rumor about the pair were spreading like wildfire through the ranks of the crowd as they made their escape. She held little doubt the rumor mill was beginning to swirl, with much of the crowd likely thinking that the two were more than likely off to engage in some scandalous behavior. Honestly, she could not help but sigh at the whole affair, with it seeming that some within the crowd held a good deal in common with those in some of the other nations she had been to. Such individuals were far too fixated on perpetuating what were in her eyes, antiquated notions of what constituted both acceptable company and activities for a scion of royalty.. To her, adhering to such dogmatic constraints only served to harm the individual bound by them, as more often than not they would end up being little more than a pawn to those around them. In retrospect, she had to admit was rather grateful that her mother had endeavored to keep her free of the pressures that came with a royal life. From what she could glean from her conversations with Christopher and the reactions of those around him, it appeared that he was not so fortunate in that regard. Nevertheless, Alana resolved that she would at the very least attempt to ameliorate that particular problem within the prince’s life for as long as she could. At the very least, she hoped she could allow him to enjoy himself for a little while.

As she turned her thoughts to the scenes around her, Alana beamed at the sight of the menagerie of botanical specimens that lay before. It was a veritable paradise for her, as she eyed what looked to be dozens of rare plant specimens from around not just Beliany but the entire world. She turned back to Christopher, blushing slightly as she spoke, “Do… forgive my enthusiasm for your greenhouse here. I suppose you could say that in addition to my mechanical predilections, I am also quite fond of exotic plant life which this place in abundance. Nevertheless… that is of lesser import compared to why we are here.” The princess flushed as she removed her bracelet proffering it to Christopher as Malx hovered above the two, playing what sounded to her ears to be some sappy music from an old romantic movie. She glared at the drone for a moment, before letting out a light chuckle, “Forgive Malx, he… enjoys the occasional joke. If you do not mind me being honest Christopher… You may say you are not fascinating or that you are boring, but such a sentiment couldn’t be further from the truth in my eyes. You are an intriguing individual to me because you are a person of… substance. There is more to you than the idle pursuit of wealth or the approval of one’s peers. I guess you could say…”

To be sure, there was nothing wrong in Alana’s eyes with seeking wealth or approval from society, but to her such things should not come at the expense of the expression of one’s talents or desires. It was an admittedly naive view for one in her position, but she nonetheless stubbornly held to it as she did not wish to see herself become yet another trophy or feather in the cap of some noble family. She felt Christopher was fascinating precisely because he was different from the typical noble or fellow royal one would find at these sorts of events, “Christopher, if I may be blunt… I find you intriguing because there is more to you than the vapidity that seems to be a recurrent problem in a large portion, if not most of the members of high society I have encountered. You have a keen mind for not only beauty, but also an eye for technology and even music which I find quite admirable. I suppose you could say you are a… rare breed of royal. A treasure if you will.”

Alana giggled slightly, trying to hide her rapidly pinkening cheeks, “Forgive me… Normally I am not one to be sentimental, but I figured I might as well speak my mind while I had the chance. Anyways, I suppose it is time to fulfill my promise, no?” Alana tapped the bracelet yet again, causing the holocontrols from earlier to reappear all the while Malxeris shuddered slightly before moving close to Christopher, “Given your experience with drones, I assume you should be able to figure out Malx’s controls fairly quickly. Do feel free to go… How would you say, go wild with them?” Yet as she watched him take the controls to Malx, Alana could not help but feel a growing sense of elation at what was unfolding before her. She recalled Auria’s words at how easily the changing directions of the wind could cause even the most unlikely blossom to suddenly come to the fore. She mused that maybe, just maybe her tutor had been on to something when she had said that.


Auria, who had been observing the pair from afar as they made their escape from the main garden, could not help but give a satisfied smile at the scene. Alana seemed to have taken her final lesson to heart, even if it had been in an unexpected manner. Nevertheless, she could not have been more proud of her at that time. Even if she were ultimately unsuccessful, it would hopefully serve the young princess well in the future. She turned her eyes to the the two individuals nearest to her, one who appeared to be a well to do looking woman who carried a munificent air about her, suggesting she was some manner of philanthropist. The other by contrast, carried an air of nobility in both his dress and demeanor. If she had to hazard a guess he was either a newly ascendant noble himself or one’s heir. She smiled at his remark, with it rather reminding her of a similar comment she had heard during her own "hunt" decades prior. Perhaps he would indeed prove correct in that Alana's strike would not be the last, but then again one could never truly tell with matters such as these until the dust had settled. Auria plucked her own drink, giving the noble a curt nod as she spoke “Perhaps, but it does depend on where the blow is struck. If the one who strikes first lands their blow in the heart or jugular, then the hunt is over. At any rate, we shall have to wait and see."
Last edited by Aravea on Sat May 02, 2020 11:55 am, edited 6 times in total.
Proud Deputy Speaker of the INTERNATIONAL FREEDOM COALITION!
★★★Proud Intelligence Minister of the United Monarchist Alliance★★★
Note: Currently in the process of overhauling the Aravean factbooks/canon.

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Kingdom of Derita
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Founded: Jun 09, 2014
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Postby Kingdom of Derita » Thu Apr 30, 2020 10:54 pm

Astrid bowed in greeting to Mr. Deuwaele. Deritain culture loathed touching of strangers, and rejoice at signs of respect and honor. The Aukusa Bay Area had served to turn this practice into less of a old tradition and more of a part of everyday life. The eldest Ardales daughter rose from her bow, her hand crossed together in front of her.

“It is a pleasure to meet you Mr. Deuwaele, though for now, I do ask that you send His Majesty King Leopold my best wishes and regards for his invitation. I do hope that he would not mind if I spoke with him later. I think for now I shall get a drink. I do hope that you will meet back up with me later on today?”

Astrid’s wording phrased this as a request and a question. Her body language and tone were quite to the contrary, as she addressed Mr. Deuwaele as she would the doorman to her Gao penthouse apartment. With friendly actions and enjoining intentions. Mr. Deuwaele seemed nice, and Astrid would to continue their conversation, but she wished to see what was causing such a stir.

In Upper Gao gossip was as sure as rain. A side effect of it being host to a large number of people of social important and notoriety. Astrid’s mother, Ava Ardales said that gossip was a dangerous plague on the world. Her father, Alexander Ardales, said that it was useful tool in navigating the perils of high society. He lived by the philosophy of that it was better to know the gossip and be disgusted by it, than to live in veracity and be a blind fool.

Astrid in her brief conversation with Mr. Deuwaele could hear the Belian whispers amongst themselves. From what she had gathered something had happened elsewhere in the gardens. She wished to get a better understanding of it. She had successfully navigated the galas and charity events of the Roschettes and Oanatsgunas back home. She was sure that she could do the day here. And in Astrid’s experience alcohol loosened lips.

Leaving Mr. Deuwaele with one last smile and nod, Astrid walked off. She flip her long thick curls over her shoulder as she made her way to the drinks. Astrid didn’t rush. Instead she took her time, each step well purposed and smooth in its action. Etiquette tutors had taught her to, instead of walking, to float across a room, or in this case a garden. Which each hair flip she tried to pick up on the conversations of others.

Astrid reached the drinks, hearing the tail end of a statement by a woman speaking with another woman and young man. She heard her refer to the event as a game, or rather a hunt. And they were clearly on the same discussional wavelength as the rest of the crowd. How interesting. From what she had pieced together was it was about the Prince. Astrid smiled, picking up a glass of champagne, joined the group.

“A hunt? I didn’t know that there was one going on,” said Astrid in a joking manner, waving her crystal glass and kicking up one of her heels, gesturing to them. “Is it here in the gardens? Or in the greenhouses? Who knew that there existed such great big game on the royal estates of the King of Beliany. Someone must have forgotten to inform me. What a pity. If I had know, then I would have worn by Udaka boots.”

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Beliany
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Postby Beliany » Sat May 02, 2020 1:27 pm

Sofia turned away from Nukai, his playful wink sending her blushing. It seemed that the grand duke had not change in quite so many ways. He was still quite the flirt, dam the situation it seemed. Not that Baudouin would care. Perhaps once he might have been jealous, not out his affection for Sofia, but more out the principle of it. Both had long ago grown out of that though. They were all family and friends here, so it didn’t matter. But Sofia feared what might happen if Nukai continued this sort of flirtation around others. The Duke and Duchess still had an image to uphold.

Baudouin was entirely distracted from this flirtation between his wife and cousin by his being subsequently crushed by Nukai’s bear hug. He scowled and groaned throughout the process, but did weakly hug him back. Baudouin caught his breath as he was finally released. What was it about his late Aunt Charlotte’s kids being either entirely ice cold—like Charlotte the Younger—or eitherly over affectionate—like Nukai. Couldn’t they just be, somewhere in-between. Baudouin always believed his aunt had inherited his grandmother’s insanity, and it seem so had her children.

“Hello Nukai,” Baudouin bemoaned. He fitted his jacket, straightening it after having been rumpled under Nukai’s python like grasp. “It’s... so wonderful that you decided to visit us.” Baudouin paused, his blue icy eyes, not quite so different from Nukai’s own, drifted to the bag in his outstretched hands. Was it a Russen thing to bring gifts. It felt entirely unnecessary, and Baudouin didn’t have a gift to match it with. Of course his cousin would do this kind of thing. He was so nice. He felt this was Sofia’s fault. She had rubbed off on him.

“Oh how... thoughtful of you,” Baudouin said in a pale attempt to sound grateful. He tried to smile, though it came off as more of tight line of his lips. It certainly didn’t reach his eyes. He made no move to accept the gift “What is it?”

As his brother ‘suffered’ through conversation with their cousin, Christopher lead Alana into the center of one of the dimes of the massive greenhouses. Around them spring up a variety of plants both native to Beliany, such as common bluebells, primeroses and sweetscented bedstraw, as well as more exotic plants from their neighbors, like the garden’s monkey-flower tree from Seidangs whose scarlet flowers were in full bloom like fire in its branches, or the mothfruit bushes from Derita, around which dozens of butterflies hovered around their bulbous bright yellow fruit.

Christopher, who had never been really into plants, was surprised, but in a good way, by Alana’s admiration for the greenhouse and its many different plants. Christopher was a bit distracted by the sudden playing of music, looking up to find Malxeris was the one behind it. He joined Alana in her laughter, brushing it off as simply a joke. Christopher however was not quite so ready to have Alana speak about him such... kind tones. His already pink cheeks turned the same shade as the monkey-flowers above them when she called him a treasure. He let out a small nervous laugh, his eyes glued to the floor, as he didn’t know where else he could.

He was this grateful when Alana at her own accord changed the subject. He regained his composure mostly as she handed the controls of Malxeris over to him. Christopher focused on the holocontrols, familiarizing himself with them as he spoke. “Uh, I, I think get it.” He paused, his eyes still focused on the controls. “Thank you. For trusting me with Malxeris. And, uh, what you said before. I think. I think you are quite unique as well. In a good way. I think there is rather idiosyncratic coding to your programming.”

Christopher wasn’t exactly sure what he was saying . He hoped it made since. It certainly hadn’t made much since to himself. He let a small sigh, and suddenly sent Malx hurtling upwards, zipping through the branches of tree and straight towards the the glass ceiling. The prince’s eyes widen as he reorganized his throughts around the controls, stopping the drone a foot or two from the glass. Christopher laughed. “Sorry. The controls are bit more sensitive than I’m used to.” Carefully He brought the drone back down and had Malxeris in a circle till he hovered several feet over them. “Okay, I think I’ve mostly got it.”

Christopher finally looked back at Alana, “so, how wild can we go?”

Meanwhile, Vincent and Mother Delporte turned their attention to their two new arrivals. Mother Delporte admired the woman’s in the red dress’ keen point in regards to the location of a first strike being a factor in success or failure. It seemed clear to Mother Delporte that this woman clearly if not confidence in the success of the Aravean Princess, insight into her. Curious. Mother Delporte tilted her head and leaned closer to the woman in the red dress. “I don’t believe we’ve been formally introduce, I’m Mother Anissa Delporte. Do you think that the Aravean princess has struck the heart, of the jugular?”

Vincent meanwhile turned his attention to the young woman with the glittering earrings, a face he easily recognized from foreign magazines. His jaw dropped as he felt his own heart pierced by Cupid’s arrow. She was the most gorgeous woman he’d ever seen. There was awe in his voice as he stared at her. “Lady Astrid Ardales... the rumors said you were beautiful, but they were clearly false. You are radiant, outshining Venus herself. So, are you here to make our Prince Christopher your prey?”

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Aravea
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Postby Aravea » Sat May 02, 2020 8:33 pm

Alana nodded at the Prince calling her unique, doing what she could to hide her ever reddening cheeks from view. She admittedly felt somewhat frustrated with herself for embarrassing Christopher to the degree she had, but it was almost worth it to her to see him blush such an alluring shade of fuschia. Nonetheless as the topic of the conversation drifted to Malxeris and her coding, she at last regained some measure of composure, “Well… I suppose you could say that is due to the nature of the original code I was working with. I… had to make a number of adjustments. Still… I’m glad you like the code, even if it is not my best work. It um…” Alana blushed once again as he complimented her programming, with her gaze shifting to the floor as she was not sure if the Prince was comfortable with her locking eyes with him again. Truth be told, it had taken her weeks of sleepless nights to resolve the issues that had plagued her original prototype for Malxeris ranging from outdated code to an initial. Even after she had finished crafting her code for him, she was still somewhat disappointed at how crude some of it was in comparison to her later work. She was shaken from her thought as she heard Christopher laugh, with her eyes widening as she watched her companion nearly slam into the glass ceiling of the green house. She admittedly had been somewhat worried about Malx being damaged, but it seemed that the Prince had managed to adjust to his controls fairly quickly.

Alana said with a gentle smile, as she tapped a violet button next to the main controls. Malx’s body lit up as several sets of rings appeared, forming two courses as they settled into place as Alana released what appeared to be a small metal arrowhead. The arrowhead floated next to Malx, its tip glowing red before it let loose a soft beeping noise, “Malx is… well… Let’s just say that I may have used a military grade material for his shell. It means he can withstand quite a bit of punishment, be it speed or the stresses of high g maneuvers. At any rate, I figured we could either have a race against the target here or you could… try out the second course to see some of his aerobatic maneuvers.” Alana tapped the violet button once again, causing the arrowhead shaped drone to take to the skies and begin moving through one set of rings. It dove and rose through the sky, cutting through narrow gaps in hedges and the supports of the greenhouse. At numerous points it just barely seemed to avoid colliding with them, only missing a devastating crash by a fraction of a millimeter. Part of the drone’s path took it over the two royals, with it moving with such speed that it caused Alana’s lengthy chestnut locks to flutter gently in its wake.

Admittedly the drone could use some more testing, but alas she had been unable to put in the proper work before she had been called here. She gave a nervous laugh as she spoke, “Fairly wild… as you can see. Might have to make a few adjustments it seems. Also.. Um….By the way, I do apologize if I made you uncomfortable with what I said earlier. It was not my intention to discomfort you. At any rate… Would you prefer to try out Malx’s aerobatic suite first or would you prefer to try you hand against the other drone?” The princess gave a nervous smile, all the while hoping she had not discomforted Christopher too much. Truthfully, she did enjoy having someone to talk to who was not out to just secure her hand or use her for a cheap attempt at good publicity. With Christopher, she need not put on a false front. Perhaps it was youthful foolishness on her part, but deep down she hoped that she had managed to at the very least find a friend in the Belian prince, if not more.She smiled as she pointed to the aerobatic course marked by golden rings,before motioning to the drone who waited patiently a few feet from the pair, “If you wish to do the former, just follow the course of the rings. Now if you wish to do the later, just move Malx next to the other drone and it will project a path for the race once you are ready.”

Auria had figured the two would be somewhat skeptical of her confidence in Alana’s success, but she supposed it was understandable given that they did not know her pupil like she did. The princess was one who was normally averse to such occasions, preferring instead to devote her energy to improving the grounds of the palace or tinkering with her drones. Yet when given the proper motivation or having found something she desired, the Princess was of a mind to pursue her target until she had either seized it or had been forced out of contention. At any rate, Auria gave a curt nod at Mother Delorte’s question, “I am Auria Snowtear, tutor to Lady Alana and aide to HIM the Arkhoness Alexandra, charmed. It is a pleasure to meet you, Mother Delporte. To answer your question,it is my belief Lady Alana has struck a blow to the young Prince's heart. However, I suppose that we shall have to wait until the dust settles to see if that is the truth of the matter, no? With that being said, I am curious….What is your opinion on the matter, Lady Delporte?”
Last edited by Aravea on Sun May 03, 2020 8:20 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Russlande
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Postby Russlande » Sun May 03, 2020 4:34 pm

Nukai was amused by his cousin’s groans. He didn’t remember Baudouin being so whining. Brooding and sober, but whining, that felt new. Was it truly possible that someone with a bad attitude could get worse? Baudouin would be the one to put that to the test of course. Nukai didn’t mind. It was just as easy to get people like Baudouin to do what he wanted as it was people like Sofia. The ways to that were simply different. Baudouin need only to right type of touch and he would no doubt scurry off into the proper direction.

Pleased in knowing that Sofia was still fun to flirt with, Nukai turned his attention the gift. He opened up the bag. With a bit of a flourish, Nukai grasped the gift and in a single fluid motion pulled out the item. In the Grand Duke’s hands was a glimmering Fabergé egg. It shined a beautiful royal purple, studded with diamonds. On its front in looping gold cursive script was the letter L. Nukai show off the egg ad if he were presenting it to a room of buyers. It truly was an admirable peace of jewelry, a symbol of opulence and power.

“Afraid that technically speaks its more a gift for Uncle Leopold, but you have to admit that is quite beautiful, no? I had it specially commissioned by the House of Fabergé back in Saint Petersburg for your father. It cost a fortune to make. It’s priceless of course. Don’t you think it would look great in the throne room? Or perhaps alongside the Crown Jewels? I do hope that Uncle Leopold likes it.”

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Kingdom of Derita
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Postby Kingdom of Derita » Sun May 03, 2020 8:01 pm

Astrid decided to ignore the fact that the Belian aristocrat was staring at her. It was not the first. He was not likely to be the last. Other ladies might be flattered by the fact that men, and the occasional woman, looked so in awe at her. And yet other ladies might have loathed it. From embarrassment or from anger if they choose. Astrid felt herself in neither one of these categories. She was well aware of her looks. She like feeling beautiful. She enjoyed being called beautiful. But no more than anyone else would.

As for the men did the calling, Astrid rarely cared much for them. Half were blinded by aesthetics, sent into a superficial lust. The other half were after her money. She figured that this particular aristocrat was in the former category. She wondered if Prince Christopher was in the former or later. She could not be sure which he would prefer him to be. At least, she figure, those who had fallen in love with her visage were interested in her, if only in the physical, as opposed to her bank account, which at times felt like an entity onto itself.

How pitiful it sounded. How cliché. A pampered dérral princess trapped by her own money. How many times had that story been told? The rich girl crushed by the weight of fortune. There was no one left to shed a tear over that. Astrid refused to be cast in that light. She much rather own her life and let matters be decided by her. She laughed at the Belian man, brushing aside his comment as if it were the most ridiculous thing in the world. The idea of the second Prince of Beliany being prey of a bunch of young woman was a a delightful image. She could picture it now. The blond royal all bemused as he ran through the woods, chased by ladies in ball gowns.

"You should not be so presumptuous good sir. And you paint your Prince in the light of a rabbit, when I would have thought you Belians might have preferred to think of him as a lion."

Astrid spoke to the aristocrat between her laughter. She flipped a curl that had come loose over her shoulder in her joy back into place. She looked away from him, turning her attention towards the Aravean woman, who she'd over heard introduce herself as Auria Snowtear, listening to her comments about the prospects of her ward, apparently some Aravean princess named Alana, to the Belian known as Mother Delporte. Snowtear it seemed to Astrid deflected on the issue, claiming Alana had caught the Prince in a single word whilst using far more words to learn about Mother Delporte.

Astrid continued observing the two older women, even as she spoke to the aristocrat who seem to still be staring at him. It occurred to her that she might do well with a blind billionaire. A man who cared not for looks nor wanted for money. She suspected blind billionaires were in short supply. And not the most amicable of suitors for her own tastes. A delightfully dark thought entered her head. Young and handsome billionaires could be found. And it was not all that difficult to pluck out such eyes. Quite a silly thought. A philosophical one. But nonetheless a silly one.

"I enjoy parties and I have heard ever so much about these garden parties hosted by your King Leopold, and who am I to refuse an invitation? Do not assume that I any desire to become a princess."

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Beliany
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Postby Beliany » Sun May 03, 2020 9:54 pm

Christopher watched in fascination as the golden rings burst into existence over head. It was so dazzling that it had caught him off guard. Malxeris was by far the most delightful drone that Christopher had ever had the honor of controlling. He couldn’t help have a sense of awe and delight rise up in his chest. Malx was clearly well crafted. Alana had to have done masterful work to create him, and he couldn’t believe how humble she was. It was a nice reprieve from the world of over confident and boisterous aristocrats. But surely she was simply being humble, because she was clearly brilliant to have work on Malxeris.

“If this is not your best work, I can hope hope to see what is!” Christopher said excitedly. He had never been so creative with his own drones. His own drones were practical and durable. They could go higher and further than most others. And they were great at capturing the scope of their surroundings in beautiful photos. And yet they were not nearly as agile and easy to maneuver as Malxeris. Alana clearly had a keen mind. It was marvelous. It showed to Christopher that he certainly had to expand the scope of his own imagination when it came to his drones. He pondered over in his head how easy or how difficult it would be in order to get his hands onto military grade tech and armor.

Quality was certainly a world away difference. He had never thought to ask about the prospect. He used high quality, but civilian supplies. He supposed he could asked his father, but he doubted that would go over well. King Leopold, and most of Christopher’s family, had no care for his interest in drones. Even Philippe had no interest in them and were accepted it as a part of his older brother, as one would accept wings were part of a bird or fur part of a dog. With recognition but not necessarily any actual interest. Only Christopher’s grandmother had showed any interest, though even then it was only in passing interest and support of his ‘darling little hobby’ as she put it. Leopold had no interest outside of music and felt everyone should feel the same. He’d never encouraged his sons to do anything he wouldn’t.

Technically speaking Christopher was in the military. Officially his school was for that of the national naval academy. Despite technically being a member of the Navy, Christopher had never taken it seriously and his tutors were just the same. Leopold has no interest in the navy, save for their ability to project Beliany’s power abroad and to protect their lengthy coast. He certainly didn’t wish to put his son in any sense of true danger. Better to have his son continue the dynasty than play officer. Christopher had once over head his uncle, the Duke of Cumberland—a military man himself, though one would never guest it from his boyish personality and looks—say that he only was in the forces so that he could wear a uniform at his wedding.

He turned excitedly towards Alana, finding himself caught off guard by the sight of her in the breeze created by the drone. He sucked in a breath. “You are, I do believe, the most brilliant woman I’ve gotten to meet. I hope that you show your work sometime.” Christopher looked at Alana, focusing on her. Or at least attempting to. Whilst he had studied Malxeris with eager and unbridled fascination and analytical study, with Alana it was like trying to study one of the exotic imported plants in the greenhouse. He knew nothing of plants. But he knew what was pretty and what was not. “You... you needs not concern yourself with apologies. I actually find it quite the reprieve to speak with someone like you. Even if you are better at flattery than me.”

Christopher directed Malx through the air. He had decided to test it through the golden rings that formed a floating course. Christopher had focused his attention back to the drone. Even as his eyes and hands focused on and directed the drone as it looked through the golden rings, narrowly avoiding ferns and tree branches, he nudged Alana playfully. “Besides, you and I are perhaps the only two of our status with our shared enthusiasm, it would do us well to stay comfortable with one another and get along.”

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Beliany
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Postby Beliany » Mon May 04, 2020 5:53 am

As his brother and the Aravean Princess did the closest thing to flirting that two people such as themselves could in the greenhouse, Baudouin gave Nukai a deadpan look. He stared at the glittering Fabergé egg. It was beautiful. It was also horribly imperialistic, and would no doubt only serve to further his father’s ego. This was precisely the type of thing that he would suspect from his cousin. Baudouin felt in his stomach a dread growing in his chest. He feared that this glimmering treasure was not the furthest scope of his cousin’s gift giving. Nukai was like an annoying magician, producing one doting familial gift after another.

Baudouin hated it. There was likely some sort of secondary feature to the bejeweled egg. Perhaps it opened up and played music. Oh god. That would be so perfectly Nukai. A perfect gift for Baudouin’s music obsessed father. Baudouin had no desire to needlessly suffer through any further presentation by his cousin. Instead he moved to escape Nukai. He stepped forward with a false, but more desperate smile than he usually wore. He picked up the Fabergé egg and it’s accompanying bag, placing it back inside as he said, “Thats so wonderful my dear cousin, honestly, a great gift boy, and I think you are right, it shall look great in the throne room. I shall go put there.”

Baudouin gave his cousin and the Dauphine smiles as he bowed and retreated quickly from their little group. The Crown Prince let out a sigh of relief as he fled the gardens. He would enjoy the quiet of the mostly empty palace. As Sofia was self alone with Nukai and the Dauphine of Gênes, she let out a sigh of relief. Without her husband, she—already a tall woman—stood taller and a smile bloomed on her face. The whole world seemed brighter all of a sudden.

Meanwhile, Vincent smiled, pleased With Lady Astrid’s response. So perhaps one of the huntresses was indeed up for grasps. And she was so beautiful. Vincent could feel heat pooled in his body as he watched the movements of the eldest Ardales daughter as if to turn away might mean the end of the world. And when presented with such a sight, was that not the case. Vincent slide forward closer to Lady Astrid, wishing for her attention to be as focused on him as his was on her. He took her beautiful hand, soft as silk woven by angels and dared to press his lips to it. God. Vincent was sure that he was in love. His heart could belong to Astrid and no one else.

“Well,” Vincent said with a small chuckle. He was half tempted to fall to his knees and propose on the spot. How romantic would that be? But alias he had no ring to present her. Was their even a ring that could suit her. She dazzled like the brightest star, bloating out the sun and the moon, and making any form of jewelry feel nonexistent to the human eye. What gift could her present to this goddess of beauty? Vincent despite his heart pounding with love—and his pants slightly tightening with lust—managed to maintain his calm, and dignity as he bowed deeply to her, like the Queen of Love she obviously was. “Would you perhaps consider becoming a Duchess instead?”

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Postby Aravea » Mon May 04, 2020 4:48 pm

Alana was enthralled as she watched Christopher lead Malxeris through the course that lay before him, with him artfully avoiding the obstacles that lay in his path. It was as if she were watching a master artist create a fine painting or sculpture before her, something only further heightened by the way in which the light reflected off of Malx’s shell. Alana was herself quite adept at the manual controls for Malx, but it seemed as if Christopher’s skill far outdid her own. Between his skill and the sense of appreciation he had for her work, she could not decide which made her more interested in the prince. She had come here expecting to find yet another spoiled royal who desired only money or title in those who they associated with, but instead she found a man after her own heart. It appeared that she had indeed been right to call him a treasure, as to her Christopher was one of kind. She knew not if the greater forces at play in this hunt would allow her to claim victory, but for that moment it did not matter. Instead, she concerned herself with making sure to enjoy this brief opportunity to be close with a kindred spirit.

Alana blushed as she watched Christopher eye her after her the drone had breezed past her, her face flushing yet a deeper crimson as he looked her over. His eyes seemed to wander over her lithe form, all the while her own azure eyes looked and admired him. Throughout her life Alana had preferred her time immersed in studying the rare plants of far flung nations or enmeshed in the creation of new machines to better aid her work. Yet as she eyed the prince, she could not help but feel as if perhaps he was one of the few people in this moment that was worthy of studying. From his modest, if albeit somewhat adorably nervous demeanor, to his seemingly keen mind Alana felt as if Christopher was truly quite the exquisite flower. Indeed it was the combination of the aforementioned traits that made him a shining example of beauty in a world filled with otherwise dull and fleeting specimens. Alana was so enraptured in her thoughts on the prince that she nearly missed what he said about her being quite brilliant, with her being somewhat taken aback by both that and how he nudged her. She struggled to hold her composure, until she at last breathed in and spoke, “You...are too kind, Christopher. Yet with that being said, do not sell yourself short. I mean...After all, you are quite brilliant yourself judging on what you have said during our time together. Certainly you must be if you have the mechanical aptitude to build drones, let alone tinker with that eye of yours. That is without even mentioning the insight you displayed when I showed you my code for Malxeris, as very few people outside of myself and my tutor are even able to grasp it. Um…”

Alana found herself babbling yet again, as she struggled to convey what she was feeling to the Prince. She would not deign to call it love at first sight, as truthfully she found the entire concept to be rather childish in nature. Yet with that being said, she could not help but wonder if perhaps she was starting to view the prince as more than just a fellow enthusiast. Admittedly, perhaps it was just her letting the ample praise the prince was lavishing her with to inflate her ego to abnormal level, something which was entirely possible. She chuckled as she nudged him back, giving him a playful smirk as she did so “Oh I don’t think getting along will be a problem, Christopher. As I have said, you are quite a pleasant change from the nobility who I have been dealing with as part of my preparations for that accursed upcoming election. At any rate, ….I’ve told you about my work, perhaps you can tell me about some of the work you have done? I mean surely, given that adept mind of yours, you must have done quite the number of amazing things in your life?"
Last edited by Aravea on Tue May 05, 2020 3:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Beliany
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Postby Beliany » Wed May 06, 2020 2:02 pm

Christopher looked back to Alana, allowing for Malx to returner to the state he’d first met the little drone, more or less free to follow whatever command it was that Alana had most recently given to him. Alana certainly had a good sense of what to say, even if she seemed hesitant to do so. He understood it. It was difficult sometimes for the words to translate his thoughts. Alana however seemed to have more than the proper vocabulary to say exactly what she wanted to, it seemed to him more a matter of if she wanted to.

“I fear I may have to burst your bubble Alana,” Christopher was still getting used to her name on his tongue. It was such a light name. Like a serene scene of lapping waves. “I’m not all that terribly interesting. I don’t think I’ve had much chance to do anything, at least not anything I’ve really wanted to do. I’ve managed to lose my eye. But I like my new one better. Originally it was directly connected it to my optic nervous system, but I it wireless and installed personalized apps and camera systems. Originally I did it so I could take better photos but it can serve as a great form of entertain, and there is no hassle with a screen or anything like that, so the image quality is off the charts. Also handy in searching up names of all the various counts, barons and marquises when doing some function or the other. I did have to promise my father and professors not use it cheat on tests.”

“Totally kept that promise.” The prince gave a cybernetic wink with his false. In truth he hadn’t had much chance to do anything of great importance. Christopher was quite jealous of many other royals who found their lives full of adventure and were free to do as they wish. The Belian Royal Family, perhaps because of its small size and relative newness, was kept sheltered and at home. There was also the issue of Christopher’s father. His sons have, unintentionally stifled in their express of themselves. When his father had been Christopher’s age, Leopold had already been a child prodigy, a globetrotter, engaged, survived assassination attempts and served as agent of international intelligence exchanges in wars. Not that Christopher aspired to be like his father, but it did feel unfair that he And his brothers were kept so leashed.

“I fear I am becoming boring.” Christopher cut himself off with a laugh. “I honestly think you are the more interesting of the two of us. I’d much rather hear about your life. You said something about an election. Are you playing your hand not only in botany, robotic engineering, computer engineering, but also politics?”

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Russlande
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Postby Russlande » Wed May 06, 2020 9:40 pm

Nukai smirked as he sent his cousin scurrying. That had worked better than he had thought. He knew that suffocating Baudouin with friendly affection was bound to send him running. He just didn’t know that it would work quite so well. His cousin was such an odd fellow. It didn’t make him painfully easy to manipulate however. Nukai waved his fingers as he watched Baudouin leave them. When his cousin had disappeared into the crowd of guests in the gardens, Nukai turned his attention to Sofia and his sister.

“I think I’ll leave you two to chat, I’m going to go find Uncle Leopold, I’ll talk to you two later. It was lovely to see you again Sofie.”

Nukai winked again at Sofia. He patted his sister the Dauphine’s arm, giving her a reassuring squeeze before letting go. Nukai turned on his heels and strolled through the crowds. The gardens were absolutely lovely. The crowds made it look like some holidays scene from an Impressionist’s painting. The grand used his height to scan the masses for his tall uncle, made only taller, and thus easier to spot by his hat. Spotting the similar form of his Uncle Leopold and Uncle Maximilian—these Belian royals were almost too blond—Nukai made a bee-line for them.

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Aravea
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Postby Aravea » Thu May 07, 2020 2:43 am

Alana listened intently as Christopher spoke of his artificial eye and his use of it, with her giving a warm laugh when he mentioned he had used it to cheat on his exams. Truthfully she had to admit the eye seemed like it was quite the useful little device, particularly if it could do even half of what the prince had said. The princess rested her hand on Christopher’s wrist giving him slight giggle before she spoke, “I’d imagine you did, Christophe. At any rate, even if you have not done much in your life, it does not mean that you are not interesting. Your skill with photography and what you showed me when you were piloting Malx were proof enough of that. Speaking of...if you would like perhaps we can try changing that, no? I mean...I could always invite you to come to Aravea some day if you would like….”

The Aravean’s smile dissipated when Christopher mentioned the upcoming election, something which in retrospect she probably should have avoided broaching. As a member of the House of Randgriz, Aravea’s ruling house, Alana reserved the right to participate in the election of the next imperial sovereign upon the retirement or death of the reigning Arkhon. Her mother, Arkhoness Alexandra, had announced her intention to retire a few months prior which had meant she had become the target of solicitations by ambitious nobles who wished to see her on the throne. Alana’s youth and her relatively reform minded views had made her the ideal candidate for the Reformist faction within the Northern Kingdoms, with them wishing to see a more open Aravea. She had initially turned them down, having been intending on sitting out the election, but she had been forced to reconsider following her nomination as the Reform candidate by the Queen of Reinvel. Truthfully, she wasn’t sure if she was ready to give up the freedom she had now for the strictures that would come upon her ascension to the throne. To be sure becoming Arkhoness would bring her a large amount of power and influence, but was it worth giving up the hobbies and life she enjoyed now?, “Sort of...It is not an election in the manner you would be familiar with, Christopher. Rather it is an election held by the Landtag, a group of electors from Aravea’s constitutent kingdoms, to elect the next sovereign of my homeland. I, along with my oldest brother are two of the leading candidates for the throne. At any rate...I’ll admit it is something I am not really sure if I am ready for. It’s just….rather difficult to prepare for I suppose.”
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Beliany
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Founded: Dec 07, 2016
Ex-Nation

Postby Beliany » Thu May 07, 2020 11:10 am

Sofia blushed deeply at Nukai’s words. They were simply things. But when one lived with Baudouin, the simplest of affection felt overwhelming. Sofia didn’t love Nukai, and she was almost sure he didn’t love her. But he humored her. He made her feel good about herself. And it made Sofia want to cling to him. She had known true love once. Years ago. There had been a time when she had the chance to choose between the crown and the man she loved. She had picked loved, and yet even then she hadn’t been allowed her choice. She could wake away from her life, no matter how much she wished to. So she chased traces of love in ghosts like Nukai.

Sofia sighed as she watched Nukai go. Her eyes drifted downwards, admiring his strides across the garden. Besides. While her emotional feelings towards the grand duke were swallow, she could not deny he was fine specimen. She missed the days of watching him and her brother-in-laws playing croque in pale pastel colored shirts and flattering white shorts. Gosh. She hated to see Nukai leave, but she did love to watch him go. It wasn’t still she could no longer see the grand duke’s,err, assets that she remembered that she stood before the Dauphine of Genes. Sofia snapped her head back to the future queen.

“Uh, I’m sorry, I seem to have those my manners and my train of thought,” Sofia said with a laugh. “The sun is so bright. Would you care to sit?”

King Leopold spotted his nephew, one of the creole islanders, coming towards them and put on a smile. Leopold had had mixed feelings about Nukai at first. When they first met years ago, Leopold had not realized who he was. The matter of his birth had been... disruptive in his family. But Leopold had come to realize that Nukai had no control over the actions of his mother, God test her soul, and father. He was family, and family was the most important thing. It did of course help that Nukai ruled an empire and was father to a queen. A so darn sweet. It was good to have a loving nephew in such positions of power.

“Ah, Nukai, my boy,” the King waved him closer over, “It is good to see you, how have you been?”

Christopher nodded as he listened to Alana. He supposed that he shouldn’t be too surprised. Royal elections were not entirely unheard of to him. Though perhaps not one same scale of regularity as Alana had described. “I can imagine it must be a lot of pressure. My own father was elected king of Beliany and it changed his entire life. And mine.” Though the Belian royal election had been more of a one off thing to fine a new king and new dynasty. As far as Christopher was aware, the throne was set in place to follow absolute primogeniture. When his father left the throne, whether by abdication or death, the crown would go to Baudouin and then Christopher’s niece, Marie-Sofie.

“It must be weird to be competing against your brother.” Christopher couldn’t imagine a similar situation between him and Baudouin. Baudouin certainly wanted to be King. Baudouin had done things while Christopher was still in high school that had made that clear. It had been a dangerous thing. A reckless thing. Luckily everything had settled by Sofia’s intervention. How Sofia had managed to actually get through to Baudouin, no one knew. Not even their father. But their father and Sofia had sworn them all to secrecy never to discuss the matter to anyone. Ever. They’d never mentioned it again. When Marie-Sofie had been born the next year, it made the matter entirely settled.

“But,” Christopher said, taking a step closer towards her as he subconsciously felt her touch on his skin, he looked down at her thoughtfully. “Do you even want to become the, sorry, how do you say it, Arkhoness? Not,” he added quickly, “that I think you wouldn’t make a great one, you would probably be the smartest person to ever for the job, it’s just... You don’t sound very eager about it. Of course, it you do want to, then you will definitely win, cause of course they would elect you, I’ve only just met you and I already know you are brilliant. And if you win, it would be neat to have a sovereign give a tour on my visit to Aravea.”

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Royal Genes
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Ex-Nation

Postby Royal Genes » Thu May 07, 2020 1:00 pm

The Dauphine of Gênes watched in utter horror as the Duchess of Brabant stared at her her brother’s ass as he walked off. The Dauphine was used to Nukai seducing people, and people gawking at him, but it never ceased to disturb her. Now matter what she couldn’t see him as anything else that her little brother. It was always weird to watch others see him in such a different light. It was only made worse by the fact that Sofia was married. Yes, Baudouin was not the greatest man, clearly, but Sofia shouldn’t be quite so obvious with her window shopping. The Dauphine decided it was best to not mention this however.

Instead the Dauphine smile at Sofia. She was pleased that Nukai was gone. He would have only served as a distraction whilst the Dauphine and the Duchess of Brabant discussed business. It would be fun to see what mischief he got up to later, but for now the Dauphine was far more interested in Sofia. Future queens had to stick together. And Gênes and Beliany were natural neighbors by the fate of geography. Neighborly relations could quickly become friendly ones under the right circumstances. It was thus up to the Dauphine to create those circumstances. And friendly chats so often happened over drinks.

“I think that’s a lovely idea,” the Dauphine said delightfully. She stepped over to Sofia’s side, locking her arm around hers. “It’ll be nice to see the gardens from a more relaxed point of view, no? Do lead the way.“
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Russlande
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Founded: Jul 16, 2014
Ex-Nation

Postby Russlande » Thu May 07, 2020 5:02 pm

Nukai joined his uncles. It had been a while since he last saw Uncle Leopold. Had he always looked quite so serious? He was going to get worry lines like that. Nukai embraced his uncle with a hug, not one quite as tight or as affectionate as he had smothered Baudouin in. Nukai suspected hideouts uncle wasn’t all that different from Baudouin, however it may seem to the outside world. Leopold merely hid it better. Or maybe it was because his uncle had known, and presumably knew, love and Nukai’s cousin simply didn’t. Love made people different. Something not for the better. He had his suspicions as to what it made his uncle.

Releasing his uncle, Nukai turned to Maximilian. Though the archduke was over a decade older than Nukai, he always seemed younger. Well into his thirties and still no less the faunlet that all those nasty paparazzi called him. It was quite admirable. No doubt the secret as to why he had last so long at Uncle Leopold’s side—whether Maximilian was aware of that or not. That and the fact that Uncle Leopold was old and had a terrible reputation. It was always struck Nukai as such a pity that his uncle that had torn Maximilian and Antoinette as sunder. He’d met both, separately, and how them both to his liking. He hoped one day they reconciled.

Nukai bowed his head slightly. In the same fluid motion he took up Maximilian’s hand and kissed it gently. Nukai had met all of his uncle’s living loves, including the dreadful Prince of Orange—why did all of Arthur and Ariane’s siblings pale in comparison to them?—, and Maximilian was by far the most suitable in Nukai’s opinion. Nukai smiled playfully at his uncle by marriage, only to turn back to the one by blood. Flirting and teasing with Sofia was one thing. Doing so with Maximilian would be an entirely different one. The grand duke didn’t wish to have a repeat some of his more secretive misadventures in Riessany.

“Uncle Leopold, it’s so good to see you! It’s been too long! I am well, ever busy, but I have always enjoyed having thing to do,” or someone Nukai thought. “And you certainly look well, dapper as ever.” Nukai said, scanning his uncle up and down like he was admiring a work of art. Which Leopold might have been once upon a time, but no longer. “Even better with Uncle Max of course. I can’t tell which of you musical genius created the lovely piece they are playing.”

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Beliany
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Founded: Dec 07, 2016
Ex-Nation

Postby Beliany » Mon May 11, 2020 8:21 am

“Of course,” said Sofia, chuckling at the Dauphine. Perhaps this friendliness that Nukai possessed was a familiar trait. The Duchess of Brabant lead the Dauphine of Gênes through the gardens along its artistically paved pathways lined with gorgeous followers that the royal gardeners were always tending to, making sure they were always beautiful. They took a turn towards the largest of the dimes of the greenhouse, which was as palatial as Laeken Castle itself, stopping at a small hill at top sat a beautiful circular pergola.

Behind the pergola looked the great dome of greenhouse and in front of it stretched a long mostly flat stretch of violas, marigold and poppies, crisscrossing with paths and small decorative shrubs and tree. At the far side of the field was an artificial lake that King Leopold had had installed for that his sons could play on boats safely at the direction of Queen Antoinette. It had thus been moved named after her, but know was merely referred as the Garden Lake.

Rising from the center of the lake rose a great water spout that shot a hundred feet into the hair, a symbol of Geneva, and a tribute to Leopold’s late favorite sister, Empress Charlotte of Connuriste. Sofia had never gotten the chance to really know Charlotte, but she could see the pain in her father-in-law’s eyes when she was mentioned. Beyond that the Leopoldine Grove.A century before this part was covered with buildings and roads, and as part of an effort to protect the environment, Leopold had, while compensating the owners, removed them and planted the grove. Many were still young and not yet fully grown.

Sofia gestured for the Dauphine to take a seat under the pergola, the climbing honeysuckle that looped around the pillars and crisscrossed roof of the pergola gave the air a sweet smell to it. Sofia sat in one of the several comfy candy colored seats. She rang a bell, calling for a servant to come for them. The Duchess of Brabant smiled, “Don’t you think it absolutely wonderful? I sure views like that,” she nodded her head to wide expanse of controlled nature, through only a few guests dared feature through away from the main crowd, “in Gênes.”

Whilst the Duchess of Brabant chatted with the Dauphine, Leopold smiled at Nukai, putting a firm hand on Maximilian’s hip. For one reason or another accord of jealousy was struck in his soul, and he found himself wanting to pull Maximilian close protectively. Leopold figures that it was nothing, and laughed, almost forcing himself to. He kissed Maximilian’s cheek and turned his attention back to his nephew. “The genius behind this piece you are hearing is all Maximilian. Aren’t they simply inspired?”

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Polonge
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Founded: Aug 05, 2014
Ex-Nation

Postby Polonge » Tue May 12, 2020 6:50 pm

Maximilian blushed, smiling at Leopold as he pulled him close. Why he had done so, he had no idea, but he didn’t mind. He rather enjoyed it when Leopold took it upon himself to be a bit protective. It was quite comforting. As was his praise. Maximilian always felt a bit insecure in the musical pieces he created. Though excellent at writing the music, Maximilian struggled, despite the best effort of his friend, Emily of Connuriste, with actually playing music.

“You are being too kind,” Maximilian said to Leopold and Nukai. He turned to his nephew-in-law. “Nukai, or is it Chancellor Aurelians now? You are just as charming as I remember, I’m so glad you like this piece. I’ve been working on trying to emulate the romantic air that seems to have settled over Beliany. It’s such a nice feeling I think. I hope it lasts into an era.”

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