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  1. - Top - End - #151
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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    The audience breaks into wild applause at the end of Melinda's performance, and even Terry stands and politely claps as she finishes. Those who are more familiar with Terry realize that this from him is equivalent to any sort of wild outburst from any other. He comes across in any other situation as a cold, passionless, ruthless person.
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    OOC: Yes, the Terry Benedict, Oceans 11, Andy Garcia

    As the applause continues, he makes an almost imperciptible motion to someone off stage. As it finally dies down, a man comes on stage, and hands a single, perfect red rose to Melinda. At the same time, Terry looks to the empty chair beside him and makes a gesture for Melinda to join him there.
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  2. - Top - End - #152
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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    After about two seconds' thought, Melinda accepts the flower in both hands. She closes her eyes and takes a sniff. Unconsciously, she rises forwards on the balls of her feet, and for one cognitive beat, she allows herself to be completely psychologically alone on stage. The scent comes through; it is sharp, sour, sweet, and deep. It is the scent of victory.

    Her heels come back down, and her eyes open. She threads the stem of her rose behind her ear and extends one last deep curtesy to her appreciative audience before leaving the stage and allowing herself to be shown the way to Terry, to whom she offers her hand.

    "Mr. Benedict, how do you do?", Melinda begins, her smile radiant. "It's truly my pleasure to make your acquaintance tonight. I'm sure you've heard enough sympathies, so allow me to be the first to congratulate you on being single again."
    Last edited by Kalirren; 2011-11-29 at 11:22 PM.

  3. - Top - End - #153
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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    There is just the barest twitch from the corner of Terry’s eye as Melinda speaks I have remedied that situation but his icy demeanor does not seem to crack as he pulls out the seat for Melinda.
    Your performance was truly outstanding my dear, how is it that we have never heard of you before?His eyes seem to watch Melinda’s every move and yet you get the feeling that nothing else at the party escapes his notice as well. The briefest raise of a finger brings a waiter running, and he pours a glass of champagne for the bardess.
    To you, my dear, as he raises his glass.
    DOUBLE GOLD = DOUBLE DOMINANCE

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  4. - Top - End - #154
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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    Taleira Ulharvyth

    With her companions otherwise occupied, Taleira chooses to take advantage of the lodgings thoughtfully acquired by Tallesin and retires fairly early, complaining that she needs extra sleep after the previous night's events.

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    In truth, Tali is using the lack of people free to check on her to slip out via teleportation and thoroughly test the limits of her still new abilities. In the process, she'll surreptitiously charm herself up a snack to satisfy her new needs, considering how tempted she was last night.

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  5. - Top - End - #155
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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    "Why, thank you," Melinda says as Terry pulls her the chair. She cannot help but express her simple gratitude. One would be amazed at the sheer number of self-fancied lovers who forget the simplest of considerations. Taking back her hand, she grasps the opposite beam of the back of the chair and sets herself down.

    "Your performance was truly outstanding, my dear. How is it that we have never heard of you before?" His eyes seem to watch Melinda’s every move and yet you get the feeling that nothing else at the party escapes his notice as well. The briefest raise of a finger brings a waiter running, and he pours a glass of champagne for the bardess.
    Melinda's movements are characterized mainly by a lack of extraneous movement, which itself lends greater expressiveness and salience to those movements she does intend to make. "I'm very glad you enjoyed my singing. I picked those pieces especially for you, you know." The bardess takes in a breath, and smirks. "I mainly perform for charity, when occasion rises. But once in a while the stars align, and I have a chance to do something special for someone. And in other respects, I blame my own temperament for my obscurity," Melinda admits. "The same causes that impel my artistry impede my desire to perform for wider recognition. Seldom have I performed outside my faith, into which I was born. And at the fringes of society where I have done my faith's work, an artist is more often than not left alone to explore their art. So I have had much time for technique, and left myself not many chances for exposure." Her eyes shift, and she smiles as the champagne bubbles in its flute. She takes up the glass between the long fingers of her right hand. "To a different future, perhaps?"

    "To you, my dear," as he raises his glass.
    "As do we always dream," Melinda remarks with a laugh, genuinely amused. She raises her glass to him, letting him approach with his as close as he wishes. Then she savors a large sip anyway.

  6. - Top - End - #156
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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    Terry tings her glass lightly with his before he takes a smaller sip.
    And so why did you chose those songs for me? In what way do you sing them to me?
    He looks thoughtful for a moment
    And did I hear you say some sort of success in the Cups of the Gods?
    DOUBLE GOLD = DOUBLE DOMINANCE

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  7. - Top - End - #157
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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    Terry tings her glass lightly with his before he takes a smaller sip.
    And so why did you chose those songs for me? In what way do you sing them to me?
    "Well, I'd be flat out dishonest if I didn't say I was hoping to end up in this very seat. I doubt you would have invited me here had I just sung some random love song, after all. I'm not so conceited to believe that my singing is that impressive," jests Melinda. "And I sang for you tonight, not to you in particular. That would have been crass, I'm sure you agree. So that was part of it. But aside from that, I'd heard a bit about what happened earlier tonight, and I thought these were songs you..." she pauses to choose a word. "...might have felt refreshed to hear. A little humor, a bit of catharsis for the heart, a fresh perspective. Especially that last diptych. I'm proud of that one, I must say."
    He looks thoughtful for a moment. "And did I hear you say some sort of success in the Cups of the Gods?"
    "Yes, I did mention that, didn't I? I'm glad I did." Melinda blows a bit of warm air through her nose into her wineglass, and takes in a bit of the astringency in the aroma with a short sniff and an approving nod before she begins. "My own Fellowship sent champions to the Cups this year along with the Tishtinan amazons and the Nocticulans. Together they came back with all ten Cups - a record that can only be equaled, until they add more Cups, which I'm sure they will eventually. Sic transit gloria mundi." Melinda grins, and sets her half-glass of champagne on the table. "Of course, the higher-ups are wonderfully pleased, but what matters to me is that this is giving me an avenue to extend my own horizons of sacred repertoire, so I've got my work cut out for me, artistically speaking. But there's always the mystical buzz, of what it's all supposed to mean."

    Melinda just shrugs in response to her own rhetorical prompt. "The Cups are a festival to celebrate the Ascension. They celebrate that the Gods were once mortal, and now represent faiths. Flip that around. Faiths are just ideas that take root in peoples' minds and blossom into something spiritually real, give them strength, resilience, hope from day to day. That idea is the beginning of all faith, and that means something, even if nothing else in religion does. Three goddesses of Love have won the Cups together. Of course that should make their fellowships draw from each other, grow into each other. That goes without saying. But I think it should also make every person of any faith in the world consider, if only for a moment, if and how they themselves love. If and how it makes them better people, more spiritually godlike."

    Melinda's hand moves to the stem of her wineglass. "So there you have it. My opinion of the whole mess. I wouldn't be worth my salt as a priestess if I didn't have a view worth sharing on the matter."

  8. - Top - End - #158
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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    I see. And you do raise interesting points about faith. I am not one to put much stock in faith...or the gods, for that matter. I find I can get along fine without them. But your songs were refreshing, and you sell yourself short on your singing ability

    His eyes continue to wander through the crowds, even as he talks to you.

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    With Melinda's skill at reading people, she can tell that far from being uninterested in her, Terry is quite interested in her, but the social niceties of polite conversation are not his forte. This person is modeled on the Terry Benedict of Oceans11
    DOUBLE GOLD = DOUBLE DOMINANCE

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  9. - Top - End - #159
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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

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    Have totally never watched Ocean's 11. I've been assured it's my loss.

    "Then you should count yourself lucky for having such a strong spirit, Mr. Benedict," Melinda compliments him, "a rare gift in this world indeed. Most people simply lose their way when they have a chance to look beyond next year's harvests, or their next arrival in port. They need something, or even someone, to believe in to give structure to the greater arcs of their lives." Melinda reclines in her chair. Seeing his gaze shift out towards the rest of the room, she starts slowly turning herself towards him. First the neck, then the head. The rest of her body will follow in time. She harbors no illusion she is not being watched, but wonders how long he will be able to keep himself from turning his own gaze.

    "So indulge me," she invites. Melinda's appetite for meeting interesting people is extensive and difficult to sate. "What keeps a man like you going along through life? How does Terrence Benedict conquer the vast ennui of wealth?"

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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    Melinda's skill in the art of seduction is difficult to match, and Terry's gaze wanders less and less into the crowd, and stays more on her.

    Watching over my casinos is enough to keep any man busy. Cons and cheaters come up with plan after plan to take more than luck or skill will give and keeping track of, and getting rid of them all is more than enough to keep me very occupied. Making a single casino run smoothly is a full time job...making sure 3 do?
    DOUBLE GOLD = DOUBLE DOMINANCE

    Twitter: It's a small weapon, aimed indiscriminately at a viewership/readership that has mastered the art of over-reactive hyperventilation at the speed of light. - Ray Ratto

    Orlando Magic basketball, everyone. Taking tanking to the next level, where you just say forget it and start scoring on yourself

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  11. - Top - End - #161
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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    So he likes talking about business, realized Melinda. That's just fine, I can talk about business. This is Zanthia's business. She still needed to make him feel comfortable around and about her. Perhaps this would be her way in. Ordinarily it would be questionable manners to talk business at such a gathering, but this was no ordinary meeting of the minds.

    "Three casinos? Right, Gran Villa, Oasis, and the Broadway," she recovers. "All with different themes, but each of them noted for their own elegance, cosmopolitan class, and ... artistic and aesthetic integrity." she enunciates with a smile, realizing she had just paid herself a compliment. "Now that I've finally met the man, I understand where it all comes from." Benedict might have invited Melinda to that chair expecting that she would replace his former wife. But the entrepreneurial bardess was already trying to convince him that she might help replace the other half of that wayward affair as well.

    "You make it sound like you hardly have time to imprint your vision further upon your business, Mr. Benedict. A pity for a gentleman of your calibre and quality." Melinda's entire upper body was facing him now. Her left arm rested over the back of the chair, and only her right leg remained pointed inwards towards the center of the table. "Casinos live and die on their ability to keep their high rollers," she commented rhetorically. "I'm going to go out on a limb here. Have you ever considered affiliating your management brand with the Sabrinite fellowship? If you haven't, you should." She brought her left thigh up to rest on the edge of the chair, and let the crest of her right hip flare for him to see. "We have an excellent reputation for building deep rapport with our clients, many of whom are fabulously wealthy and love to show it. We cultivate a truly spectacular pool of artistic talent to suit the most discriminating tastes. If I am modest, it is because I have long dwelt among cultural giants. And although I'd not be privileged to divulge too much detail, rest assured that we have a long track record of implementing visionary agendas." Her figure continued to cut a sleek diagonal through her sales pitch. "Of course, I needn't mention that close affiliates of my faith are often accorded various personal privileges."

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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    Someone with lesser ability to read people would not be able to pick up the subtle signs from Terry, but for Melinda, they are quite appearant. Her body is certainly having an effect on him, how much her words are adding to it is not readily visible.
    Its an unspoken fact that several of the casinos are owned by Nocticulan interests, and of course, quite a few are owned by the interests of Daren Philisar II, the god of luck. Being squeezed by two churches can be a pain at time, and the Nocticulans will go to any length to keep their high rollers. What sort of ideas would you bring to benefit us?
    DOUBLE GOLD = DOUBLE DOMINANCE

    Twitter: It's a small weapon, aimed indiscriminately at a viewership/readership that has mastered the art of over-reactive hyperventilation at the speed of light. - Ray Ratto

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  13. - Top - End - #163
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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    "This is how I see your personal brand, Mr. Benedict. Square me if I'm off the mark. You might have been born rich, but you're still a self-made man. And you think like one. This defines both your niche within business, and the market niche to which your establishments cater. Your sensibilities will appeal to men and women who could end up wealthy with a decent stroke of luck and work in the family. Your fortunes over the long term will grow and shrink with the prosperity of an upwardly mobile industrial and mercantile middle class.

    "Now in my experience there are two kinds of people who frequent Nocticulan establishments. There are the super-rich who can survive the drain of paying perversely much for perverse privileges over their entire lifetime, and then there are those who are simply looking for the exotic, and would really fit better somewhere else. You're not stealing the former from the Nocticulans, because that's their lifeblood. Their specialty is in swallowing entire lives whole, and they devote a lot of energy and effort into picking their targets. Given their tactics, access to our talents will certainly help you hold on to the high rollers they steal from you.

    "But much more important, I think, would be to work on the latter half and win over their share of the artistically aspirant, hedonist upper middle class. That segment in aggregate prefers to be comp'ed in spectacle and experience, rather than in privilege itself, which they really don't know how to enjoy as much. This is where being artistically ambitious will pay off. And we have artistic talent in spades.

    "On the other side, Daren Philisar's establishments cater to a lower-end market. Notably, they make more of their own high rollers than any other branch of casinos. But they have trouble holding on to them. Once someone strikes it rich once, striking it only slightly richer again holds less appeal. And luck always runs out. On the other hand, status and taste fade far less quickly, and can be easily sold with a personal touch. Again, you need us Sabrinites to help win over the loyalty of Daren's high rollers, just like you need us to defend against the Nocticulans' poaching of your own."

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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    I like the way you think. And more importantly, what you say is pretty much spot on the mark. So the question is, what do you see as your role in this...and as importantly, how much will it cost me?
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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    "Mmm," purred Melinda. Through her necklace a mental ping goes out to Zanthia. The negotiation was approaching a stage of preliminary commitment, and Melinda was ultimately speaking only speculatively, even if confidently and in right spirit. It was time for her to report.

    "I ask nothing unreasonable, Mr. Benedict," the bardess began. "For myself? A token amount for as long as I remain your chief liaison to our faith. My standing within it becomes yours, and you, as far as they are concerned, become principally mine to deal with. And I would need your help in collecting the commission upon my sisters for any business of theirs that ends up proceeding through this channel, as is our custom. For my part, I'll be your advocate to my sisters, whom you don't stand a chance of managing yourself, and as long as you trust my taste, I will also steer the creative agenda of whatever artistic ambitions you're willing to entertain in your venues.

    "But for my sisters? If this grows beyond the concerted efforts of a few talented people, and I hope it does, I must insist on behalf of my Fellowship to buying in to a significant level of ownership of your enterprise. I don't intend for this to be a takeover, but Sabrina could not approve of Her daughters putting themselves in an exploitable position under the auspices of another without real recourse." Especially a man, she thought. "The exact degree of support for this that I can drum up from the higher-ups and some of my more well-connected friends is still a bit uncertain, so I'm not giving you any numbers, but this must be on the table."

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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    Up until the point that Melinda mentions buying up a share of Terry's ownership, he seems open to the idea. The moment she brings that up, however, he stiffens, and quickly.

    When you say a significant share, what sort of share are you talking about? I didnt build up these casinos to sell them off.
    DOUBLE GOLD = DOUBLE DOMINANCE

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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    "I understand that," Melinda parries without missing a beat. "That's what I meant when I said I don't intend for it to be a takeover. We don't actually want to buy you out of your own business. We only need enough power to prevent power's worst abuses," she reassures him. "Realistically, one partnership, or one seat on whatever governing board you have, would be enough for us to raise these concerns when we need to. But to have that without having an ownership stake will cause all your other investors to revolt.

    "So most elegant would be an arrangement that would allow us to bring our own share to the table that would result in little or no dilution of value to existing stakeholders. I'm not familiar enough with the structure of your holdings to propose exactly how that should be done."
    Last edited by Kalirren; 2011-12-05 at 09:54 PM.

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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    My ownership group is a pure shareholder arrangement. Whoever owns a share owns one vote on who the board of directors is. I happen to own 50.1% of the shares. Thus, if I wanted to put one of your people on the board of directors, I could easily do so. Is that what you are looking for? As for buying up other people's shares, I cant force people to sell to you, and Im not too interested in my own. Of course, people buy and sell stock all the time.
    DOUBLE GOLD = DOUBLE DOMINANCE

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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    "A seat on the Board will do just fine. Sorry to have tripped a nerve there, I just thought it polite to consult with you before my associates started buying up stock. Which they will, if this turns out to be as much of a success as I hope it will be." There were only a few candidates for that seat - Zanthia, Dot, herself. "Shall I send to Varstok? And then we can move on to the rest of our evening?"

    (OOC: Sorry this took so long.)

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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    Terry raises his glass in a toast to Melinda.

    I would be glad to have Zanthia represent Sabrina on our board of directors. Her business acumen is well known, as well as her association with Natasha. And you are more than welcome to buy up as much stock as you wish. Of course, I dont plan on selling any, but others might
    DOUBLE GOLD = DOUBLE DOMINANCE

    Twitter: It's a small weapon, aimed indiscriminately at a viewership/readership that has mastered the art of over-reactive hyperventilation at the speed of light. - Ray Ratto

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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    The next day, race morning, dawns clear and warm, perfect weather for racing. There has been no rain in Belmont for several days now, ensuring a hard and fast track at the Park.
    Everyone received Darya's emergency notice last night about the attempted assassination of Sword, but Dot saw to her immediate needs, while Lia spent the rest of the night patrolling the outside of the stables.
    Breakfast is being brought to the jockeys at the stable, and the race will be run at about 3 or so in the afternoon, it is morning now.
    Already, more and more people are qeueing up at the betting windows and tables, the odds on Sword are now sitting at about 110 to 1.

    Everyone is free to act.
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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    Lildorrinene enjoyed Terry Benedict's distraction by Melinda. [The fact that you didn't mention anything about 'Laelle' being with him was odd, so I guess we'll figure at the time he was embarrassed .... giving Laelle the idea that she should leave him be to berate his wife.]

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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    Dot & co make it back to the stables by about an hour after dawn, all looking a bit dissheveled and the worse for wear. The effect is not improved by the dead assassin that Clyde plunks down in a secluded corner of the courtyard - mustn't startle the precious horses on the big day, after all.

    Passing a hand over weary eyes, Dot searches the killer's face as if it might actually provide answers. Which, of course, it might.
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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    There dont seem to be a whole lot of answers from the killer's face. The first thing is that almost all of it is covered with a black cloth, just leaving enough to see and breathe through. Once face stripped, his face is unremarkable, the face of a stone cold killer. The only item that would give any clue as to his identity is the medallion Dot and Darya found earlier with the mountain symbol on it, which identifies him as a follower of Dantilus Telgar.

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    Dantilus Telgar is the god of the mountains
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    Dantilus is second in power only to Rohdan among evil gods, and is one of only two gods (Morgaz being the other) that believes in blood sacrifices.
    Know Religion 30
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    There is a shadowy and much feared cult of assassins that work and worship Dantilus, clearly this man is one of them


    OOC: make only one roll, and go as far into the spoilers as your roll permits.
    Last edited by MikelaC1; 2011-12-08 at 08:00 AM.
    DOUBLE GOLD = DOUBLE DOMINANCE

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  25. - Top - End - #175
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    lostsole31's Avatar

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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    Lok-Too-Loo-Baz makes a DC 30 Religion check automatically (and would be aided by Lil anyway). He shares what he knows about Dantilus Telgar ... which is the whole megillah.
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  26. - Top - End - #176
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Toliudar's Avatar

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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    Dot looks around at the others as the group starts to reassemble. There are clearly things that she'd like to chat about, but glances at Darya and sends her a telepathic prod.

    "This would seem to be your tale to tell. I was only there for the end, and I suspect that Melinda would be scandalized by someone starting a story in the middle."
    Currently climbing out of a heckofa two weeks at work/RL. Now working to catch up. Thanks for your patience.

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  27. - Top - End - #177
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Ason's Avatar

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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    Upon waking and dressing himself, Tallesin strolls over to the stables to meet with Darya and the others for breakfast. His bets already placed, there isn't much for Mr. Eliado to do today other than offer encouragement and whatever more practical measures Darya might want (ex. review of opposing horses, spell protections [if legal], etc). Obviously, he is currently listening to Darya's story of last night's events.
    Last edited by Ason; 2011-12-08 at 05:45 PM.
    I'm back again! Sorry to anyone affected by my absence: some rather major health/life issues knocked me out for two years. Now I'm back again and diving right into the fray! Miss me?

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  28. - Top - End - #178
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Kalirren's Avatar

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    Default Continuing last night's RP; will probably end up joining the other thread next post.

    "To us," Melinda dedicates, raising her own glass wistfully. "As do we all dream."

    "More seriously, I'm sure Her Holiness will enjoy the opportunity to leave her mark," Melinda remarks as she proceeds to down some more wine, leaving only a tiny bit at the bottom. "Can't imagine she'll refuse." She begins to make the motions to rise. "If you'll excuse me for a minute, I shall send to Varstok. I'm glad to have reached our current understanding. And I imagine I'll be seeing a lot more of you in the future." Powerful people were always so interesting. Powerful and wealthy, a combination to be savored.

    She is halfway out of her chair, having quit her seat on the side closer to Terry, and is about to turn away from the table when she stops. Her one hand rests on the near side of the chair back. "One thing before I go. I came here with my agent tonight." Her other hand moves to stroke the stem of the rose behind her ear, and frames her face. "Do I have your commitment, for me to tell him not to expect me to leave with him?" Melinda asks, leaning suggestively. "He is a good friend. I'd hate to keep him waiting for me."

  29. - Top - End - #179
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    MikelaC1's Avatar

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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    Terry takes the decanter of wine, and pours another glass for Melinda.

    You are more than welcome to spend as much of night with me as you wish. I would hope that its more, rather than less. Im sure your agent can find something else to amuse his time with. I would love the chance to enjoy your company further. Perhaps we can discuss things other than business.
    DOUBLE GOLD = DOUBLE DOMINANCE

    Twitter: It's a small weapon, aimed indiscriminately at a viewership/readership that has mastered the art of over-reactive hyperventilation at the speed of light. - Ray Ratto

    Orlando Magic basketball, everyone. Taking tanking to the next level, where you just say forget it and start scoring on yourself

    Thanks to Telasi for the custom avatar

  30. - Top - End - #180
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Kalirren's Avatar

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    Default Re: Three Goddesses - IC (Thread #2)

    "I'll tell him," the bardess acknowledges, nodding. She sighs through a bemused smile, then bends her neck over to his head and whispers in his ear. "In the meantime, start thinking about how -small- of a token amount you might be willing to offer for the privilege of being the first man to bed this champion of the Cups since her competition, hm?"

    She draws back slowly, like a hawk hooding its catch. Two long fingers brush across Terry's shoulder as she leaves, humming.

    What am I thinking? What from him would I have the gall to refuse? Melinda thought to herself as she turned a corner and vanished from sight. A bit flustered, she pinged Zanthia again through the necklace. Her Holiness hadn't responded to the first one, but Melinda really did need to make sure Zanthia knew that she'd been volunteered to sit on Terry Benedict's Board of Directors. Then she could tell Tallesin not to expect her. Then she could dodge Lil on the way back to Terry's table, whose presence she had just noticed, and only then would she at last have an offer to deal with, if she had enough presence of mind left...

    **

    Indeed, it didn't take her very long at all to accept his offer.
    Last edited by Kalirren; 2011-12-08 at 09:08 PM.

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