Roleplay - A Masked Ball in Padova

AuthorMessage
Admiral
Jul 27, 2012
1190
Quentin Atherton on Oct 18, 2013 wrote:
Valona heard everything from the the edge and told Quentin. Quentin face palmed and teleported to the ship to say he was sorry. The crabs didn't believe him, so Quentin gave Tony a blanket than read body temperatures and heats and cools the body if it's too hot or too cold.

Tony: Thank you, I accept your apology.

The Crabs told Quentin and Valona about the Vinaldi mansion secrets. It used to belong to the toymaker, and the toymaker built a secret bunker for the next family in case the Armada took over and forced everyone to support them. The toymaker made sure only living things could get in the bunker, and it was filled with emergency provisions to last for several years.

Quentin: OK, thanks for the info, tell Orlando I said thanks.

Valona: It's almost time for the ball, lets get going.

Valona and Quentin darted off for the mansion with the crabs, and waited for everyone to show up.

At the Marleybone carnival, the brothers were having fun with their dates. Arlechinno is riding the Ferris Wheel with Alexander, Griffin broke the arm wrestler's game and won a whole bunch of tickets for Alleviare, Bernard won a stuffed puppy for Spia, and Noah was riding a roller coaster with Gracie. Everyone was having a lot of fun (at least until Noah threw up from the roller coaster, then they were really having fun).
(OOC: hmm. Well, I really like the part about the other brothers having fun at a carnival in Marleybone, but I am trying to keep this story realistic (within the Pirate101 world, that is) and consistent with the information we presently have in game as well as events that have occurred or motivations for future events within this particular tale.

So, first Quentin doesn't have to teleport into a ship (which is good, because I don't think we don't have that ability, really), because the Crabs were on the land's edge rescuing their own. You can walk to them. Their first instinct if they see you would be to run for it -- they are primarily laborers and aren't fighters; you scared them badly. But you can convince the Crabs not to run, sure. They will accept your gift and your apology, and will get enough nerve to tell you that Orlando Foscari is worried that his father will be looking to arrest you, but more than that... probably not. They are really afraid of you, and just want to escape.

In any case, they couldn't tell you about the Toymaker and a secret bunker (though a nice thought), because it does not exist in this tale (they don't know about the threat to the Vinaldis either; they are very small time spies) I don't know enough about the Toymaker to speculate informatively. And as for the art-loving, pleasure-loving Valencians? Opinions on the Armada vary dramatically (one of the themes of this tale), and even those who oppose the Armada mostly do not realize how much of a threat it is. If it came to a fight, they believe it would be a dig-in-heels-and-fight, not make contingency plans for losing a war.

But, I'll tell you a secret -- because there might be such things on Quentin's home island as well -- they don't really need to build bunkers. Inside the island of Padova are the catacombs. Perhaps more on those later.

Please be patient with me, Quentin. I am planning some action for you. The meeting with the Crabs didn't go off and so I had to dump that idea, but there is something interesting coming your way soon, before the Ball.

Captain
Mar 09, 2011
709
Anne Radcliffe on Oct 18, 2013 wrote:
The captain of the ship approached Graziella. "Ma dona, we are beginning the approach to the stormgate." Graziella thanked him, and addressed the pirate captains. "Ladies who are hiding below, would you please go to the smuggling holes now? Chrissy and Jack, don these clothes I have here and I will give you your papers."

Below, Elizabeth, Scarlet, Emma, and Anne placed themselves into the smuggling holes, and waited for the lids to be affixed to them. A pillow now lay in each, but Anne felt she would not be sleeping. She drew her dagger and held it in her right hand on her breast, like a funerary figure. If the worst happened- if she was discovered - she wanted to be armed and ready. Then the lid was placed over her, and she was left in the close dark.

Time to start singing those dance tunes in my head, Anne thought determinedly. But the first song that popped into her mind was not a dance tune, but rather a beautiful, melancholy piece that Maestra Lia had sung the previous evening, accompanied by Signore Fillipo on the lute. O mia cieca e dura sorte - 'o blind and harsh destiny' sang the words with achingly sweet tune and lovely open harmonies that yet conveyed a feeling of depth and richness. Although the song was sad, Anne was greatly drawn to it. Though she was an inherently cheerful person, she loved a great many melancholy songs. Perhaps singing those songs drew the melancholy out of her, Anne briefly considered, and then focused on the music in memory...

Meanwhile Jack and Chrissy had changed into the Valencian clothes that would mark them as common servants. Chrissy found herself in a faded blue round gown, with a worn but clean white linen apron, and a cap that confined most of her hair. Jack was in a poorer version of a typical gentleman's suit: white linen shirt (of coarse linen, in his case), and waistcoat, breeches, and frockcoat of a sturdy brown fustian [cotton-linen] that had seen better days. His stockings were of a coarse wool and his shoes had no buckles, but were instead tied with a bit of leather. Chrissy faired better: her shoes did not have buckles either, but did have a nice piece of blue silk ribbon to fasten them.

Dona Graziella handed them their papers. "These papers confirm your roles as my household servants. It is unlikely the Armada will question you, but if they do, keep your eyes lowered, speak softly and humbly, and confine your answers to only the questions asked. Do not ask any questions yourself. Do not comment on anything. And if - heavens forbid - anything should go wrong, do not interfere -- even if one of your own is discovered! I know I am asking a lot of proud pirate captains. But should you reveal yourselves in any way, the whole game will be lost."

Then Graziella took her place with the captain and his officers, as the passengers waited on deck, waiting to be boarded by Armada soldiers.
Anne may be singing, but Lizzy was going through the ordeal quite a different way.

It was taking all of her will not to freak out while she was alone in that dark, small hole. If she had been with a friend she would have felt better, but Lizzy really can't do tight spaces alone. She let out a whimper and pressed against the sides of the smuggling hole, only feeling more compressed because the pillow was taking up room. Lizzy couldn't believe it had slipped her mind to mention her claustrophobia... along with a few other -phobias... Good grief! Was that a spider crawling on her shoulder? Oh wait, no, it's just her hair.

Stop crying, Liz! What if you get caught?

Good point. But it's so dark! So cold... so small... so alone...

Lizzy twisted into the fetal position, hugging her legs. You can do this. Stay strong.

But I'm not strong.

Fine, then. Stay quiet.

Okay. I can do that. I think. Lizzy closed her eyes and tried to think of a happy memory, to help distract herself from the death trap that she felt like she was in. It took her a while to find one that was happy enough, but she finally found it when she and her friends had traveled to Grizzleheim. She was leaning against a cold wall of ice and snow, but there was something warm next to her, keeping her mind off of the cold and rather feeling warm and fuzzy. The person next to her had tangled, brown hair that was growing out a little oddly, which framed his stone grey eyes. He had his arm around her, and she felt like she belonged there, by his side.

Warwick. She remembered. It would be nice if you were here. Not in this smuggling hole, of course, but here with us, going to the ball.

It was on happy memories of that adventure that she survived the dark hole, and she managed to not freak out for the rest of the time that she was there. Lizzy actually smiled at some point, when she remembered trying to teach him out to fish. The fish had ended up smacking her in the face, which was quite funny, and she had to keep herself from laughing in that little dark hole.

When she emerged from the smuggling hole, however, she had an air of melancholy about her, and no one really knew why. Anne had a guess, though, that she was missing someone. Nobody asked her about it, and they left her alone.

~

OOC: This doesn't necessarily have to be true, about her emerging from the hole. I don't know whether or not things will go well for the group, so I'd be fine if that last part was discarded. Well... I hope things go well for the group!

Pirate Overlord
Mar 10, 2009
6079
Anne Radcliffe on Oct 18, 2013 wrote:
The captain of the ship approached Graziella. "Ma dona, we are beginning the approach to the stormgate." Graziella thanked him, and addressed the pirate captains. "Ladies who are hiding below, would you please go to the smuggling holes now? Chrissy and Jack, don these clothes I have here and I will give you your papers."

Below, Elizabeth, Scarlet, Emma, and Anne placed themselves into the smuggling holes, and waited for the lids to be affixed to them. A pillow now lay in each, but Anne felt she would not be sleeping. She drew her dagger and held it in her right hand on her breast, like a funerary figure. If the worst happened- if she was discovered - she wanted to be armed and ready. Then the lid was placed over her, and she was left in the close dark.

Time to start singing those dance tunes in my head, Anne thought determinedly. But the first song that popped into her mind was not a dance tune, but rather a beautiful, melancholy piece that Maestra Lia had sung the previous evening, accompanied by Signore Fillipo on the lute. O mia cieca e dura sorte - 'o blind and harsh destiny' sang the words with achingly sweet tune and lovely open harmonies that yet conveyed a feeling of depth and richness. Although the song was sad, Anne was greatly drawn to it. Though she was an inherently cheerful person, she loved a great many melancholy songs. Perhaps singing those songs drew the melancholy out of her, Anne briefly considered, and then focused on the music in memory...

Meanwhile Jack and Chrissy had changed into the Valencian clothes that would mark them as common servants. Chrissy found herself in a faded blue round gown, with a worn but clean white linen apron, and a cap that confined most of her hair. Jack was in a poorer version of a typical gentleman's suit: white linen shirt (of coarse linen, in his case), and waistcoat, breeches, and frockcoat of a sturdy brown fustian [cotton-linen] that had seen better days. His stockings were of a coarse wool and his shoes had no buckles, but were instead tied with a bit of leather. Chrissy faired better: her shoes did not have buckles either, but did have a nice piece of blue silk ribbon to fasten them.

Dona Graziella handed them their papers. "These papers confirm your roles as my household servants. It is unlikely the Armada will question you, but if they do, keep your eyes lowered, speak softly and humbly, and confine your answers to only the questions asked. Do not ask any questions yourself. Do not comment on anything. And if - heavens forbid - anything should go wrong, do not interfere -- even if one of your own is discovered! I know I am asking a lot of proud pirate captains. But should you reveal yourselves in any way, the whole game will be lost."

Then Graziella took her place with the captain and his officers, as the passengers waited on deck, waiting to be boarded by Armada soldiers.
Chrissy digested the information and twirled a bit to get the feel of her "new" gown. She wasn't used to gowns, even servant style and it actually felt unexpedly nice. She leaned down and gave her really pretty ribbon ties an unneeded tweak but she couldn't resist. She rarely wore any kind of ribbon and thought they were delightful.
She placed her papers in a nicely hidden pocket and looked around for something servantly to do that would be useful in many levels.

She tried to think of a way to unobtrusively protect her friends. She went below and pulled out one of Dona Graziella's gowns and pulled her past embroidery lessons to the front of her mind. She sat on the hiding place of Anne and spread out her sewing supplies to cover the entire surface and quietly hummed as she stitched beautiful flowers and ribbon designs to the gown. With so many little things to move, she was confident that the delay and fuss of closer scrutiny would deter the average armada soldier.
She tried to catch Jack's eye hoping that he would make a similar move and repair nets or leather supplies on the other hiding place. She was very good at acting so appearing busy and unconcerned was not a problem.

Commodore
Feb 29, 2012
892
Anne Radcliffe on Oct 18, 2013 wrote:
The captain of the ship approached Graziella. "Ma dona, we are beginning the approach to the stormgate." Graziella thanked him, and addressed the pirate captains. "Ladies who are hiding below, would you please go to the smuggling holes now? Chrissy and Jack, don these clothes I have here and I will give you your papers."

Below, Elizabeth, Scarlet, Emma, and Anne placed themselves into the smuggling holes, and waited for the lids to be affixed to them. A pillow now lay in each, but Anne felt she would not be sleeping. She drew her dagger and held it in her right hand on her breast, like a funerary figure. If the worst happened- if she was discovered - she wanted to be armed and ready. Then the lid was placed over her, and she was left in the close dark.

Time to start singing those dance tunes in my head, Anne thought determinedly. But the first song that popped into her mind was not a dance tune, but rather a beautiful, melancholy piece that Maestra Lia had sung the previous evening, accompanied by Signore Fillipo on the lute. O mia cieca e dura sorte - 'o blind and harsh destiny' sang the words with achingly sweet tune and lovely open harmonies that yet conveyed a feeling of depth and richness. Although the song was sad, Anne was greatly drawn to it. Though she was an inherently cheerful person, she loved a great many melancholy songs. Perhaps singing those songs drew the melancholy out of her, Anne briefly considered, and then focused on the music in memory...

Meanwhile Jack and Chrissy had changed into the Valencian clothes that would mark them as common servants. Chrissy found herself in a faded blue round gown, with a worn but clean white linen apron, and a cap that confined most of her hair. Jack was in a poorer version of a typical gentleman's suit: white linen shirt (of coarse linen, in his case), and waistcoat, breeches, and frockcoat of a sturdy brown fustian [cotton-linen] that had seen better days. His stockings were of a coarse wool and his shoes had no buckles, but were instead tied with a bit of leather. Chrissy faired better: her shoes did not have buckles either, but did have a nice piece of blue silk ribbon to fasten them.

Dona Graziella handed them their papers. "These papers confirm your roles as my household servants. It is unlikely the Armada will question you, but if they do, keep your eyes lowered, speak softly and humbly, and confine your answers to only the questions asked. Do not ask any questions yourself. Do not comment on anything. And if - heavens forbid - anything should go wrong, do not interfere -- even if one of your own is discovered! I know I am asking a lot of proud pirate captains. But should you reveal yourselves in any way, the whole game will be lost."

Then Graziella took her place with the captain and his officers, as the passengers waited on deck, waiting to be boarded by Armada soldiers.
Emma didn't quite place herself in the smuggling hole- more like leap, and she let out a yell. "WOO!" The blonde landed at the bottom, and she took a seat, tapping her foot against the walls around her. As the lid closed the hole into darkness, Emma relaxed. She could do the dark and small spaces- it was heights she wasn't gonna deal with. The blonde reclined and, with her eyes adjusted to the dark, she examined her nails or at least what she could see of them. Emma had spent a good deal of her life in smuggling holes due to her life of piracy- especially the fact that musketeers are typically renowned for their skills in exporting illegal goods and getting themselves into dangerous occasions.

As a tradition to her, the blonde hummed the first few lyrics to her favorite song from Mooshu- "Sabitsuita kokoro otomo nai, sekai, nani o miteruno..." It was a sort of friendly love song, about a female individual who lost the person she was befriending to the dangers of a wicked spell that destroyed her humanity and recreated her as a terrible monster. The other girl ran to her rescue, but unable to save her friend from the horrible curse that brought her to the darkness, the girl set off an explosion which killed both her and her friend so they wouldn't be alone in the afterlife. A sad song indeed, but a beautiful one. She skipped straight to the chorus after pausing in the first verse. "Nandome no kimochi darou, koko ni aru nukomori wa..."

Commodore
Sep 20, 2009
814
Scarlet was quite comfortable laying still in the smuggleing hole. It was really rather roomy, but not too roomy for her. With the soft rocking of the ship, she was beginning to fell drowsy, when a small, barely audible sound reached her. Not from above her, or beneath her, but seeming to drift from someplace beside her.

Scarlet could barely make out what the sound was, but as she concentrated on it, she realised it was someone singing. Probably Anne, judging by the soprano voice. Scalet smiled at the thought of her friend, laying in a similar dark hole singing to herself.

Scarlet folded her hands over her stomach, and closed her eyes. The faint sound of Anne's singing was actually making Scarlet even more drowsy. As Scarlet drifted off to sleep, she had a sudden memory of a classroom back in Albion. She had been studying a play by one of Marleybone's greatest playwrights. The section of verse that came to mind was the part describing Ophelia, surrounded by flowers, and singing as she slowly drifted down a river. I hope this trip lasts longer and fares better than Ophelia's trip did.

Admiral
Jul 27, 2012
1190
Chrissy Th'Blesser on Oct 18, 2013 wrote:
Chrissy digested the information and twirled a bit to get the feel of her "new" gown. She wasn't used to gowns, even servant style and it actually felt unexpedly nice. She leaned down and gave her really pretty ribbon ties an unneeded tweak but she couldn't resist. She rarely wore any kind of ribbon and thought they were delightful.
She placed her papers in a nicely hidden pocket and looked around for something servantly to do that would be useful in many levels.

She tried to think of a way to unobtrusively protect her friends. She went below and pulled out one of Dona Graziella's gowns and pulled her past embroidery lessons to the front of her mind. She sat on the hiding place of Anne and spread out her sewing supplies to cover the entire surface and quietly hummed as she stitched beautiful flowers and ribbon designs to the gown. With so many little things to move, she was confident that the delay and fuss of closer scrutiny would deter the average armada soldier.
She tried to catch Jack's eye hoping that he would make a similar move and repair nets or leather supplies on the other hiding place. She was very good at acting so appearing busy and unconcerned was not a problem.
Chrissy felt the heavy footsteps the boarding party arrive on the deck above, and her heart gave a nervous flip. Her fingers shook as she pulled the silk floss to firm the stitch, but she determinedly put away her fear, and focused on being alert. Everything's going to be okay, she told herself staunchly. Scarlet, Emma, Lizzy, and Anne were all safely hidden. Jack was on the top deck with the other passengers, and much of the crew.

Below decks, it was silent. A few sailors stood at various points on guard, and were quiet and at attention. All too soon, the silence was broken as a group of Armada soldiers trooped with a methodical clatter below, and began to search. Chrissy eyed them surreptitiously, pretending to be engrossed in her embroidery.

The Armada soldiers were no respecters of personal goods. Bags were unceremoniously dumped out, the contents of chests strewn about. The sailors on guard watched in stony silence, their only movement to show their papers upon demand. After the Armada soldiers had finished searching bags, chests, and boxes, they began to examine the ship itself, thumping the butt end of their rifles on floor, ceiling, and the walls of the hull. Chrissy held her breath.

"You. Human - what do you do here?" Chrissy swallowed hard as she found herself suddenly confronted by one of the Armada soldiers.

"I am sewing for my mistress," Chrissy replied in what she hoped was a suitably meek voice.

"Give me your papers," was his only reply. Chrissy slipped her hand into her pocket slit inside her petticoat and drew forth the papers. He gave them a cursory look, then simply dropped the papers on the ground as he roughly grabbed the gown Chrissy had been embroidering. Silk floss, narrow silk ribbon, and a few precious needles scattered everywhere. The Clockwork shook out the gown, quickly examining it, then arrogantly tossed it to the floor. He shoved Chrissy aside with enough force to bruise.

She was furious at such treatment, but knew better than to express it. Chrissy kept her eyes lowered and her position subservient. Then the Clockwork soldier brought the butt of his rifle down right on the lid of Anne's hiding place...

Chrissy involuntarily held her breath. The Armada soldier moved a little further down, and repeated his action. Again and again he and the others checked for secret compartments, but they detected nothing. Without a word they left and returned to the upper deck, leaving a huge mess behind them.

Chrissy picked up the gown, her papers, and the silks, breathing a thankful prayer of relief. The smuggling holes had worked. Her friends were safe. Jack surely would be safe himself above.

Everything would be all right.

(OOC: yes, that sequence of Lizzy coming out of the smuggling hole will be just fine, Elizabeth, but nobody gets out just yet. I still have to write what happens on the top deck of the ship...)

Ensign
May 31, 2012
28
I saw what Chrissy was doing. Clever. Deterring closer scrutiny while not drawing attention. Unfortunately, me being disguised as the type of Serbian I was, there wasn't much I could do that would help disguise the smuggling holes. I was supposed to be a household servant, not one who would be seen fixing nets instead of serving drinks and such. It would draw attention if I tried to do anything similar to Chrissy. I did spread a tarp over the hole, however, and labeled it Rat Poison. The clockworks might not be afraid of poison, but at the same time, they wouldn't think twice about it. I even stuffed some boxed poison under it, so they wouldn't investigate too in-depth. Then I went to my place and waited.

Gunner's Mate
Oct 11, 2012
283
Anne Radcliffe on Oct 18, 2013 wrote:
Omar found a welcome response from the music-loving residents of Padova as he played his flute in the market place. The coins thrown into the proffered hat were not of large denomination, but were frequent enough. More frequent were the smiles of pleasure, the impromptu dancing at the playing of dance tunes, and even people breaking out in song when they recognized a piece. Once singers for all four parts of a madrigal began to sing, filling the air with voices and flute in perfect harmony.

He decided after a while that he had played enough in that particular spot, and it was time to move to a new one. A Guinea Pig woman, neatly dressed in a green linen round gown that attired her portly form, and a human man, dressed also in respectable if not rich fashion, were the last to toss coins into his hat as Omar stooped to pick it up, and as he bowed to them, he saw they were looking at him intently.

"Say, signore," the man began hesitantly. "You play the flute very well. Can you play a variety of dance tunes -- balli, minuets, sarabandes, and so forth? We are engaged to play for the Doge's masked ball the day after tomorrow, and our fellow flutist is now sick with a cold."

The Guinea Pig looked more skeptical. "I don't know, Luciano. He looks pretty scruffy to me."

"But he plays well, Gisela! And maybe he has a better suit of clothes at home. In any case, where will we find another flutist on short notice?"

"We have recorder players you know. They could take the parts. O very well," Gisela relented, seeing the pleading look on Luciano's face. "He does play well. If he can play the repertory, then he can come, if he wants the job. But if he doesn't have a better suit of clothes, he will have to stay towards the back."
"No need to worry, Madame," Omar replied confidently "I am familiar with the full repertoire of Valencian dancing tunes. As for the clothes, I have a more suitable suit, though it has a bit of an autumn feel to it. Nevertheless, I shall not fail thee."
After collecting his coins and discussing the details with Luciano and Gisela, Omar went on his way towards the docks to earn a pretty penny from the sailors and passengers coming into port.

Gunner's Mate
Oct 11, 2012
283
Just Add Bacon on Oct 18, 2013 wrote:
Anne may be singing, but Lizzy was going through the ordeal quite a different way.

It was taking all of her will not to freak out while she was alone in that dark, small hole. If she had been with a friend she would have felt better, but Lizzy really can't do tight spaces alone. She let out a whimper and pressed against the sides of the smuggling hole, only feeling more compressed because the pillow was taking up room. Lizzy couldn't believe it had slipped her mind to mention her claustrophobia... along with a few other -phobias... Good grief! Was that a spider crawling on her shoulder? Oh wait, no, it's just her hair.

Stop crying, Liz! What if you get caught?

Good point. But it's so dark! So cold... so small... so alone...

Lizzy twisted into the fetal position, hugging her legs. You can do this. Stay strong.

But I'm not strong.

Fine, then. Stay quiet.

Okay. I can do that. I think. Lizzy closed her eyes and tried to think of a happy memory, to help distract herself from the death trap that she felt like she was in. It took her a while to find one that was happy enough, but she finally found it when she and her friends had traveled to Grizzleheim. She was leaning against a cold wall of ice and snow, but there was something warm next to her, keeping her mind off of the cold and rather feeling warm and fuzzy. The person next to her had tangled, brown hair that was growing out a little oddly, which framed his stone grey eyes. He had his arm around her, and she felt like she belonged there, by his side.

Warwick. She remembered. It would be nice if you were here. Not in this smuggling hole, of course, but here with us, going to the ball.

It was on happy memories of that adventure that she survived the dark hole, and she managed to not freak out for the rest of the time that she was there. Lizzy actually smiled at some point, when she remembered trying to teach him out to fish. The fish had ended up smacking her in the face, which was quite funny, and she had to keep herself from laughing in that little dark hole.

When she emerged from the smuggling hole, however, she had an air of melancholy about her, and no one really knew why. Anne had a guess, though, that she was missing someone. Nobody asked her about it, and they left her alone.

~

OOC: This doesn't necessarily have to be true, about her emerging from the hole. I don't know whether or not things will go well for the group, so I'd be fine if that last part was discarded. Well... I hope things go well for the group!
On his way to the docks, Omar felt a shiver as a charismatic voice echoed in his head.
"There coming." was what she said
Omar, recognizing the voice, listened to Maria's instructions to sit by a certain dock as to make sure "they" would see him. Though Omar would have preferred a spot at the dock's entrance as to collect more money, he listened to Maria and besides, a unicorn playing the hurdy gurdy already took the perfect spot. Not wanting much competition, he glanced jealously at the strange instrument and move on to the suggested spot. There, he played, and waited for these persons soon to come according to the Hoodoo Lady.

Admiral
Jul 27, 2012
1190
On the deck of the ship, everyone waited formally as the Armada soldiers inspected the ship. First they examined the papers of the captain and his crew. Evidently satisfied that these were unimpeachable, a detachment of the clockworks went below while the others began to search the top deck and then examine the papers of the passengers.

Jack's papers and those of the other servant-types were given hardly more than a cursory glance, the Armada soldiers somehow managing to convey contempt without a face capable of registering expression. The clockwork inspectors moved on. Dona Graziella was given more scrutiny and trouble, but she remained calm and assured throughout. Nothing was found wrong with anyone's papers; all was going well, until...

"Your papers state you are a professor at the University of Padova," the Armada captain demanded of Maestra Lia.

"I am a professor of natural philosophy there, yes," she replied evenly, with perhaps just a hint of well-earned pride, but her hands lay with all due modesty crossed at the front of her petticoats. "I primarily led studies in plants, fungi, and animalcules," she added when the officer signaled for an elaboration.

"To what purpose?" came the next demand.

She was clearly surprised by such a question. "Purpose? Why to better understand the natural world, of course."

"The University is closed now," came the rather smug rejoiner.

"Ah, yes, during this 'time of crisis'," Lia retorted ascerbically. "True, like my fellow professors, I am not drawing any pay at present. Yet I am still a student of nature, nonetheless," she finished quietly.

"The University is suspect as a hot bed of insurrection and rebellion," retorted the Armada captain. "Therefore you are under arrest as a suspected member of the Resistance!"

"What!?" Lia managed to gasp, her face going completely white, her calm demeanor lost.

"I protest!" Dona Graziella immediately strode forward to confront the Armada officer.

Gunner's Mate
Oct 05, 2012
273
Anne Radcliffe on Oct 21, 2013 wrote:
On the deck of the ship, everyone waited formally as the Armada soldiers inspected the ship. First they examined the papers of the captain and his crew. Evidently satisfied that these were unimpeachable, a detachment of the clockworks went below while the others began to search the top deck and then examine the papers of the passengers.

Jack's papers and those of the other servant-types were given hardly more than a cursory glance, the Armada soldiers somehow managing to convey contempt without a face capable of registering expression. The clockwork inspectors moved on. Dona Graziella was given more scrutiny and trouble, but she remained calm and assured throughout. Nothing was found wrong with anyone's papers; all was going well, until...

"Your papers state you are a professor at the University of Padova," the Armada captain demanded of Maestra Lia.

"I am a professor of natural philosophy there, yes," she replied evenly, with perhaps just a hint of well-earned pride, but her hands lay with all due modesty crossed at the front of her petticoats. "I primarily led studies in plants, fungi, and animalcules," she added when the officer signaled for an elaboration.

"To what purpose?" came the next demand.

She was clearly surprised by such a question. "Purpose? Why to better understand the natural world, of course."

"The University is closed now," came the rather smug rejoiner.

"Ah, yes, during this 'time of crisis'," Lia retorted ascerbically. "True, like my fellow professors, I am not drawing any pay at present. Yet I am still a student of nature, nonetheless," she finished quietly.

"The University is suspect as a hot bed of insurrection and rebellion," retorted the Armada captain. "Therefore you are under arrest as a suspected member of the Resistance!"

"What!?" Lia managed to gasp, her face going completely white, her calm demeanor lost.

"I protest!" Dona Graziella immediately strode forward to confront the Armada officer.
One of Quentin's guards heard of the incident and reported it to Quentin himself. Quentin and Valona rushed to Jack's ship.

Armada Captain: Face it, you're outnumbered!

Dona Graziella: Yes, but you're outmatched.

Quentin busted down the hull door.

Dona Graziella: OK, now you're outmatch, AND outnumbered.

The clockworks were so nervous, they oiled themselves. Then the pirates attacked, it turned from stand off to ship haul brawl in a matter of seconds. The ship tilted, hopped, rocked, spinned, and twisted. The last thing that happened was the clockworks being shot out of cannons into the Skyway with them screaming all the way.

Dona: OK, that felt GREAT! I haven't done something that harmful to the Armada in years!

Lia: Thank you for your help Quentin, even though we didn't need it.

Quentin: It's OK, when it comes to someone being threatened by the Armada. It is up to me to get the message through those thick masks of theirs.

Valona showed up completely exhausted. She collapsed to the floor breathing deeply.

Quentin: There you are, what took you so long?

Valona: I can't run as cartoonishly fast you Quentin when you react to an emergency.

Quentin helped Valona up and carried her back to the Vinaldi mansion. Dona was very curious to see that Quentin knew of their problem. Dona then decided to investigate further at the ball when it comes around.

Captain
Mar 09, 2011
709
Quentin Atherton on Oct 21, 2013 wrote:
One of Quentin's guards heard of the incident and reported it to Quentin himself. Quentin and Valona rushed to Jack's ship.

Armada Captain: Face it, you're outnumbered!

Dona Graziella: Yes, but you're outmatched.

Quentin busted down the hull door.

Dona Graziella: OK, now you're outmatch, AND outnumbered.

The clockworks were so nervous, they oiled themselves. Then the pirates attacked, it turned from stand off to ship haul brawl in a matter of seconds. The ship tilted, hopped, rocked, spinned, and twisted. The last thing that happened was the clockworks being shot out of cannons into the Skyway with them screaming all the way.

Dona: OK, that felt GREAT! I haven't done something that harmful to the Armada in years!

Lia: Thank you for your help Quentin, even though we didn't need it.

Quentin: It's OK, when it comes to someone being threatened by the Armada. It is up to me to get the message through those thick masks of theirs.

Valona showed up completely exhausted. She collapsed to the floor breathing deeply.

Quentin: There you are, what took you so long?

Valona: I can't run as cartoonishly fast you Quentin when you react to an emergency.

Quentin helped Valona up and carried her back to the Vinaldi mansion. Dona was very curious to see that Quentin knew of their problem. Dona then decided to investigate further at the ball when it comes around.
OOC: *Hoots with laughter, then wipes away giggle tears* Quentin, you are hilarious! The clockworks 'oiled' themselves? *snicker* That must have been a sight! Valona... out of breath... "I can't run as cartoonishly fast as you, Quentin..." LOL! Very funny, my friend.

But... I'm not entirely sure that this works very well with the storyline. By Quentin attacking the clockworks and rescuing Lia, this is no longer an undercover mission and Quentin has put the group on all sorts of lists, each one bad and clockwork-related.

I don't even know how to reply to Lia getting arrested... but I think that the best thing to do as of right now is lay low and hope for the best, and from Lizzy's perspective, rescue her from the armada prison as soon at the undercover mission at the Masked Ball is successfully completed.

Don't worry, Quentin, you will get your action soon enough. Patience, young pirate. May the force be with you.

Admiral
Jul 27, 2012
1190
Anne Radcliffe on Oct 21, 2013 wrote:
On the deck of the ship, everyone waited formally as the Armada soldiers inspected the ship. First they examined the papers of the captain and his crew. Evidently satisfied that these were unimpeachable, a detachment of the clockworks went below while the others began to search the top deck and then examine the papers of the passengers.

Jack's papers and those of the other servant-types were given hardly more than a cursory glance, the Armada soldiers somehow managing to convey contempt without a face capable of registering expression. The clockwork inspectors moved on. Dona Graziella was given more scrutiny and trouble, but she remained calm and assured throughout. Nothing was found wrong with anyone's papers; all was going well, until...

"Your papers state you are a professor at the University of Padova," the Armada captain demanded of Maestra Lia.

"I am a professor of natural philosophy there, yes," she replied evenly, with perhaps just a hint of well-earned pride, but her hands lay with all due modesty crossed at the front of her petticoats. "I primarily led studies in plants, fungi, and animalcules," she added when the officer signaled for an elaboration.

"To what purpose?" came the next demand.

She was clearly surprised by such a question. "Purpose? Why to better understand the natural world, of course."

"The University is closed now," came the rather smug rejoiner.

"Ah, yes, during this 'time of crisis'," Lia retorted ascerbically. "True, like my fellow professors, I am not drawing any pay at present. Yet I am still a student of nature, nonetheless," she finished quietly.

"The University is suspect as a hot bed of insurrection and rebellion," retorted the Armada captain. "Therefore you are under arrest as a suspected member of the Resistance!"

"What!?" Lia managed to gasp, her face going completely white, her calm demeanor lost.

"I protest!" Dona Graziella immediately strode forward to confront the Armada officer.
"Your protest is meaningless," sneered the Armada captain as he signaled several of his men to bring forth a set of manacles for the intended prisoner.

"I am a member of the Senate, an official representative of the people of Padova," Dona Graziella gritted out between clenched teeth. "And I declare in truth that you are acting outside the laws of the land. You have no lawful cause for arrest. This woman is innocent!"

"The matter of innocence or guilt will be determined after she has been properly questioned," came back the cold retort.

"There is no evidence to suspect any guilt!" Graziella continued furiously.

The senator's impassioned argument had no affect upon the Armada soldiers whatsoever, who came forward to bind their prisoner in chains. Lia had a white and panicked look, as if she would have liked to run, though there was no place to run to. Then she visibly straightened her already stately posture, and looking directly and briefly into Jack's eyes, then into Fillipo's and Graziella, she made a tiny shake of her head.

No. Do not interfere. Do not risk the mission. All this was plain from her small movement. Fillipo bowed his head as Lia bowed hers, meekly allowing herself to be taken away. A tear glinted at the edge of Signore Fillipo's long eyelashes.

Dona Graziella, however, had not finished. "The Armada can not transgress the laws of Valencia and get away with it! I will notify the Council about this! I will inform the Doge."

"Inform whom you please," the Armada officer snapped back with cold indifference. "But do not interfere with us, or you shall pay the ultimate penalty."

The other Armada soldiers returned from searching below, and then they all left the ship with their prisoner, passengers and sailors looking on with helpless misery. Then they were cleared to enter the storm gate.

Once they did so, Dona Graziella buried her face in her hands and allowed herself the luxury of a single sob. Then as the ship travelled between worlds, she began to give orders. "Tell our guests below they may safely come out now. Brief them on what has happened. Signora Lucia," she added specifically to one of the ship's officers, "prepare a pigeon for the Laurentine Library once we enter Valencian skies." (And this is a live pigeon, not a clockwork pigeon. Just to note)

So saying she hurried to her small quarters onboard the ship, returning a few moments later with a sealed letter. Jack managed to get a peek at the address of the letter: Magdelena Vendelino.

(OOC: Quentin presently has his hands full. I'll be there presently, but had to finish this sequence first)

Gunner's Mate
May 28, 2013
284
Anne Radcliffe on Oct 21, 2013 wrote:
"Your protest is meaningless," sneered the Armada captain as he signaled several of his men to bring forth a set of manacles for the intended prisoner.

"I am a member of the Senate, an official representative of the people of Padova," Dona Graziella gritted out between clenched teeth. "And I declare in truth that you are acting outside the laws of the land. You have no lawful cause for arrest. This woman is innocent!"

"The matter of innocence or guilt will be determined after she has been properly questioned," came back the cold retort.

"There is no evidence to suspect any guilt!" Graziella continued furiously.

The senator's impassioned argument had no affect upon the Armada soldiers whatsoever, who came forward to bind their prisoner in chains. Lia had a white and panicked look, as if she would have liked to run, though there was no place to run to. Then she visibly straightened her already stately posture, and looking directly and briefly into Jack's eyes, then into Fillipo's and Graziella, she made a tiny shake of her head.

No. Do not interfere. Do not risk the mission. All this was plain from her small movement. Fillipo bowed his head as Lia bowed hers, meekly allowing herself to be taken away. A tear glinted at the edge of Signore Fillipo's long eyelashes.

Dona Graziella, however, had not finished. "The Armada can not transgress the laws of Valencia and get away with it! I will notify the Council about this! I will inform the Doge."

"Inform whom you please," the Armada officer snapped back with cold indifference. "But do not interfere with us, or you shall pay the ultimate penalty."

The other Armada soldiers returned from searching below, and then they all left the ship with their prisoner, passengers and sailors looking on with helpless misery. Then they were cleared to enter the storm gate.

Once they did so, Dona Graziella buried her face in her hands and allowed herself the luxury of a single sob. Then as the ship travelled between worlds, she began to give orders. "Tell our guests below they may safely come out now. Brief them on what has happened. Signora Lucia," she added specifically to one of the ship's officers, "prepare a pigeon for the Laurentine Library once we enter Valencian skies." (And this is a live pigeon, not a clockwork pigeon. Just to note)

So saying she hurried to her small quarters onboard the ship, returning a few moments later with a sealed letter. Jack managed to get a peek at the address of the letter: Magdelena Vendelino.

(OOC: Quentin presently has his hands full. I'll be there presently, but had to finish this sequence first)
Magdelena Vendelino frowned as she reread the letter. Glancing around to make sure no one aboard the Black Star was paying too close attention, she casually ripped the letter to shreds and (in time honored tradtion) proceeded to eat the bits. The taste was no better than the contents, for the news was most disheartening. Just when you thought the Armada could be predicted, they went and did something completely unexpected. Detaining Maestra Lia was not good for the evening's plans at all. That meant the Armada was capable of doing anything, including ruining the entire scheme.

The Unicorn slowly chewed her missive and glanced across the deck. Sam was getting dressed in his costume, 'helped' by his crew. They were all merrily chatting and laughing together like this was just another lark, and not a cloak and dagger mission of great importance. Of course that was what she had led them into thinking all along, but now her conscience was beginning to bother her. She looked again at the young man surrounded by a Rat, Bull, Mouse, Horse and Cat. Each of them would throw themselves in harm's way without a moment's thought for one another's sake. Rather like a floating mini-Resistance. Could she now sacrifice him for the sake of the Resistance? He was doing more good than any one of the so-called Leaders who made sure of their own safety and security first. That kind would easily sacrifice others as long as they personally survived to 'fight' another day.

No, she thought, I don't think so. Besides - she rather liked the young fool.

But this business with Maestra Lia... Enough phony 'invitations' had been sent out to known 'Persons of Interest' to the Armada to keep everybody busy watching everyone else for the night. Hopefully that would mean the Ball's true objective could be carried off without a hitch, something she would only tell Sam about if it became absolutely necessary. But it would only take one hothead doing something completely foolish to destroy over a month of planning. Those were the risks one took when counting on the actions of others. Life was not a script to be simply acted out. But it was now too late in the game to change any plans.

Finally, all that was left was for Sam to don his oversized Lion mask, and that wouldn't be done until the ship docked, and it was the night of the Ball. Each weapon he carried had been triple checked by his crew. Magdelena only carried the one stilleto strapped her thigh, hidden under her black and gold gown, her own mask of black feathers depicting a Raven.

Sam walked over, smiled, and said, "Let's go make this Michaelangelo of yours jealous."

Ensign
May 31, 2012
28
Magdelena Vendelino. Who could that be? I thought it over as I retired to his cabin. I wish I could've done more to help Lia, but there was a time and a place for these things. They could try to rescue her later if she ended up being found guilty. Right now, though, the ball was fast approaching, and I needed to make preparations. Once in my cabin, I took out a piece of paper and began to write. Once the letter was finished, I folded it up, sealed it in an envelope, and placed it in my coat. Unbeknownst to the others, I had another objective in this mission. Not anything that could jepordize them, of course, and I think Dona Graziella may know a bit about it, but it was something I needed to do. With luck, we'd come out of this with more than just the saved face of a family.

OOC: Do you mind telling me what class of servant you imagined Jack is disguised as? I imagine he'd be a household servant, not too low in the ranks, but not too high up either.

Pirate Overlord
Mar 10, 2009
6079
Anne Radcliffe on Oct 21, 2013 wrote:
"Your protest is meaningless," sneered the Armada captain as he signaled several of his men to bring forth a set of manacles for the intended prisoner.

"I am a member of the Senate, an official representative of the people of Padova," Dona Graziella gritted out between clenched teeth. "And I declare in truth that you are acting outside the laws of the land. You have no lawful cause for arrest. This woman is innocent!"

"The matter of innocence or guilt will be determined after she has been properly questioned," came back the cold retort.

"There is no evidence to suspect any guilt!" Graziella continued furiously.

The senator's impassioned argument had no affect upon the Armada soldiers whatsoever, who came forward to bind their prisoner in chains. Lia had a white and panicked look, as if she would have liked to run, though there was no place to run to. Then she visibly straightened her already stately posture, and looking directly and briefly into Jack's eyes, then into Fillipo's and Graziella, she made a tiny shake of her head.

No. Do not interfere. Do not risk the mission. All this was plain from her small movement. Fillipo bowed his head as Lia bowed hers, meekly allowing herself to be taken away. A tear glinted at the edge of Signore Fillipo's long eyelashes.

Dona Graziella, however, had not finished. "The Armada can not transgress the laws of Valencia and get away with it! I will notify the Council about this! I will inform the Doge."

"Inform whom you please," the Armada officer snapped back with cold indifference. "But do not interfere with us, or you shall pay the ultimate penalty."

The other Armada soldiers returned from searching below, and then they all left the ship with their prisoner, passengers and sailors looking on with helpless misery. Then they were cleared to enter the storm gate.

Once they did so, Dona Graziella buried her face in her hands and allowed herself the luxury of a single sob. Then as the ship travelled between worlds, she began to give orders. "Tell our guests below they may safely come out now. Brief them on what has happened. Signora Lucia," she added specifically to one of the ship's officers, "prepare a pigeon for the Laurentine Library once we enter Valencian skies." (And this is a live pigeon, not a clockwork pigeon. Just to note)

So saying she hurried to her small quarters onboard the ship, returning a few moments later with a sealed letter. Jack managed to get a peek at the address of the letter: Magdelena Vendelino.

(OOC: Quentin presently has his hands full. I'll be there presently, but had to finish this sequence first)
Chrissy, who had been watching from below rushed to the hiding places and opened the hidden doors. As the hiders emerged, on look at Chrissy's white face told them something was very wrong. She assured them that she was all right and gestured to them to head deck side for the whole story. She sat down with a moan, slightly favoring her new bruised side and gave a shaky sigh. Were they really going to be able to pull this off? This was the first time she had been around the armada since her terrifying capture that she hadn't had the luxury of pulverizing them. It had brought back all those feelings of helplessness that she felt in that dark cell. "Poor Maestra Lia" she whispered. She knew what she would be going through and feeling. The serious danger of their mission had become very clear. Her fear slowly churned to anger and she stood up knowing that she just had to help pull this off for now there was a new mission added to goal of this one. She would never allow anyone she knew to be abandoned in the desolation she remembered so well.

Gunner's Mate
Oct 05, 2012
273
Quentin was getting very impatient, so Valona took him to the university he graduated from; Universita di Valencia. A university that was so advanced that it accepted people that were from 6 to 50 years old. Kids in Valencia were born scholars, geniuses, and philosophers. Quentin graduated from the college when he was only 15, everything in the college game him a sense of nostalgia.

Quentin: Ah, Universita di Valencia, me my brothers' favorite location here in Padova.

Valona: You miss the good old days, don't you?

Quentin: Yes, even though they were from a year ago, I truly miss the days when war wasn't in Valencia.

Big shocker, Quentin is 16 years old along with his brothers and fiance.

Quentin: We should head back before the ball starts, we will tour the university before we leave Padova.

Quentin and Valona walked back to the Vinaldi mansion with heavy hearts and hands held together, praying for the war to end with the Armada destroyed.

Gunner's Mate
Oct 11, 2012
283
as the ship sailed between them worlds, a sad tune played through all the ship. The tune came from a mysterious music box that just appeared in the galley. On top of the box was a figure clad in orange and purple and playing a shawm. The tune was Fortune My Foe and, though it would be the tune Omar would play when the pass him by, it was not Omar who placed it there. No, the culprit was a young girl wearing colorful Gypsy's garb. One of the servants saw her place the box and run off during the inspection and suspected she escaped the ship somehow.

(This woman is Maria Lavern. A new character I have been working on for a while.)

Admiral
Jul 27, 2012
1190
Chrissy Th'Blesser on Oct 23, 2013 wrote:
Chrissy, who had been watching from below rushed to the hiding places and opened the hidden doors. As the hiders emerged, on look at Chrissy's white face told them something was very wrong. She assured them that she was all right and gestured to them to head deck side for the whole story. She sat down with a moan, slightly favoring her new bruised side and gave a shaky sigh. Were they really going to be able to pull this off? This was the first time she had been around the armada since her terrifying capture that she hadn't had the luxury of pulverizing them. It had brought back all those feelings of helplessness that she felt in that dark cell. "Poor Maestra Lia" she whispered. She knew what she would be going through and feeling. The serious danger of their mission had become very clear. Her fear slowly churned to anger and she stood up knowing that she just had to help pull this off for now there was a new mission added to goal of this one. She would never allow anyone she knew to be abandoned in the desolation she remembered so well.
(OOC: very nice, Chrissy -- that's pretty much exactly what I'm driving at! If I could give you 2 yars, I would. Also, Lizzie, your comment too about handling missions was intelligent and insightful. Yes. The Armada is deadly, powerful, and arrogantly capricious. Don't mess with them... though, of course, we are.)
~
Meanwhile:

Quentin and Valona puzzled where to stay in Padova, as the Ball was to be the day after tomorrow. They decided to check out student housing at the University, and there perhaps learn more about local politics from chatty students.

The University, courtesy of being situated on the highest hill of the island, lay a good walking distance outside of town. But it was a fair day, despite the ominous storm clouds that seemed to hover on the horizon, and the walk was pleasant, leading them through several farms whose main product was clearly the fruit harvested on lovingly trellised and pruned grape arbors.

Only, when they got to the gate of the University, they found their first shock: the University was closed; the gates locked. Disappointed, they began to head back towards town. At least their journey this way would be mostly downhill.

The landscape was peaceful and bucolic, yet as they walked, Quentin suddenly felt a twinge of apprehension. He suddenly realized how very lonely the rows of silent grape arbors were. Of course, he could handle a sudden attack by robbers, and Valona as well as he, yet he felt uneasy and wished they were town where one could just slip into the crowd.

As this thought flitted through Quentin's head, he heard a loud 'click', the unmistakable sound of multiple spark-rifles being primed in unison. Valona stiffened beside him. Seemingly coming from out of nowhere, the pair now found themselves surrounded by Armada soldiers.

The Clockwork in front had a saber drawn as well as a pistol. "You are the human named Quentin," he addressed Quentin coldly. "You are under arrest for suspicion of piracy."

(And you know what he is going to say next, don't you?) "Surrender now, or be destroyed!"

Admiral
Jul 27, 2012
1190
The Undead Obeah on Oct 24, 2013 wrote:
as the ship sailed between them worlds, a sad tune played through all the ship. The tune came from a mysterious music box that just appeared in the galley. On top of the box was a figure clad in orange and purple and playing a shawm. The tune was Fortune My Foe and, though it would be the tune Omar would play when the pass him by, it was not Omar who placed it there. No, the culprit was a young girl wearing colorful Gypsy's garb. One of the servants saw her place the box and run off during the inspection and suspected she escaped the ship somehow.

(This woman is Maria Lavern. A new character I have been working on for a while.)
(OOC: I almost fell out of my chair, Omar, with you referencing some of the music I love. That is pretty exciting for me; I mean, most people think I am odd for thinking that the best pop tunes are the ones most popular in the Renaissance and Baroque)

Anne had been initially elated to find that they had safely passed the Armada inspection -- until Chrissy told her the news that there had been instead a loss. Her usually animated face became still and sober. Her first instinct was to do something about the abduction -- for this had been no proper arrest. Yet here she had no ship, and another mission to perform that she had already promised to do. She could only inwardly sigh, and like Chrissy, promise silently a rescue attempt later -- if their teacher of dance and social strategy on this trip was still alive.

Still, her heart couldn't help but feel a little cheered a moment later as she came on deck into the rarified atmosphere of the Spiral between Worlds. Though not entirely comfortable, as one's chest felt compressed and it was hard to breathe, the journey between Worlds was a dizzying combination of cosmic beauty and electric excitement. Anne always loved this journey, despite its dangerous nature, though if she was completely honest with herself, perhaps she loved it all the more because it was dangerous.

Yet, this time, there was something different. Music was playing, music with a rather mechanical air. Music that was familiar. Anne gasped, and immediately made a beeline for the music box.

Scarlet, more careful, made a grasp for Anne's sleeve but missed. "Fais attention! Anne, you don't know where it has come from!"

Anne heard the warning, briefly considered it, but then dismissed the caution. Something with such lovely music couldn't be bad, she rationalized rather naively. Her heart filled with the tune being played, and with such fullness of spirit, began to sing along:
Fortune, my foe, why doest thou frown on me?
And will thy favors never better be?
Wilt thou, I say, forever breed my pain?
And wilt thou not restore my joys again?

So very true, Anne thought with another inward sigh. But her mind led her to the very last verse as the others came around her to see the strange music box that had appeared on the vessel, and she sang again in her light soprano:
Die not in fear, nor live in discontent,
Be thou not slain, where never blood was meant.
Revive again, to faint thou has no need,
The less afraid, the better thou shalt speed.

Though the song was technically about the pursuit of love, Anne felt herself heartened and all the more ready to take up the fight against the Armada, even if it was in ways uncertain and unfamiliar

Gunner's Mate
Oct 05, 2012
273
Anne Radcliffe on Oct 24, 2013 wrote:
(OOC: very nice, Chrissy -- that's pretty much exactly what I'm driving at! If I could give you 2 yars, I would. Also, Lizzie, your comment too about handling missions was intelligent and insightful. Yes. The Armada is deadly, powerful, and arrogantly capricious. Don't mess with them... though, of course, we are.)
~
Meanwhile:

Quentin and Valona puzzled where to stay in Padova, as the Ball was to be the day after tomorrow. They decided to check out student housing at the University, and there perhaps learn more about local politics from chatty students.

The University, courtesy of being situated on the highest hill of the island, lay a good walking distance outside of town. But it was a fair day, despite the ominous storm clouds that seemed to hover on the horizon, and the walk was pleasant, leading them through several farms whose main product was clearly the fruit harvested on lovingly trellised and pruned grape arbors.

Only, when they got to the gate of the University, they found their first shock: the University was closed; the gates locked. Disappointed, they began to head back towards town. At least their journey this way would be mostly downhill.

The landscape was peaceful and bucolic, yet as they walked, Quentin suddenly felt a twinge of apprehension. He suddenly realized how very lonely the rows of silent grape arbors were. Of course, he could handle a sudden attack by robbers, and Valona as well as he, yet he felt uneasy and wished they were town where one could just slip into the crowd.

As this thought flitted through Quentin's head, he heard a loud 'click', the unmistakable sound of multiple spark-rifles being primed in unison. Valona stiffened beside him. Seemingly coming from out of nowhere, the pair now found themselves surrounded by Armada soldiers.

The Clockwork in front had a saber drawn as well as a pistol. "You are the human named Quentin," he addressed Quentin coldly. "You are under arrest for suspicion of piracy."

(And you know what he is going to say next, don't you?) "Surrender now, or be destroyed!"
Before the clockworks did anything, Quentin showed his papers saying he is a protected citizen of the entire Spiral.

Clockwork Commander: This is impossible, how can you be a protected citi...

The Clockwork Commander took a good look at the wax seals on the paper, they were from everywhere; Wizard City, Polaris, Coolranch, Darkmoore, Monquista, Marleybone, Aquila, Avalon, Celestia, Azteca, Dragonspyre, Mooshu, Skull Island, Krokotopia, even Valencia. The Commander was suspicious how Quentin got a wax seal of protection approval (Kane intrusted the seal to Phule who left it in his cell at Fort Elena, Quentin picked it up after Phule left).

Dragoon: Are you sure you're protected here?

Quentin -with silent fury-: I'm going to pretend you didn't just second guess me.

The Dragoon sensed Quentin's silent fury, and he pretty much oiled himself and ran straight for the hills. The other clockworks stood there in amazement, seeing how someone could frighten off a Dragoon like that.

Quentin: Now, either you let us go, or do I have to report you to Kane.

The clockworks bolted leaving behind dust clouds of their exact features.

Quentin: That's what I thought.

Quentin and Valona headed back to the Vinaldi Mansion to wait for the ball to start.

Admiral
Jul 27, 2012
1190
Serpent996 on Oct 22, 2013 wrote:
Magdelena Vendelino. Who could that be? I thought it over as I retired to his cabin. I wish I could've done more to help Lia, but there was a time and a place for these things. They could try to rescue her later if she ended up being found guilty. Right now, though, the ball was fast approaching, and I needed to make preparations. Once in my cabin, I took out a piece of paper and began to write. Once the letter was finished, I folded it up, sealed it in an envelope, and placed it in my coat. Unbeknownst to the others, I had another objective in this mission. Not anything that could jepordize them, of course, and I think Dona Graziella may know a bit about it, but it was something I needed to do. With luck, we'd come out of this with more than just the saved face of a family.

OOC: Do you mind telling me what class of servant you imagined Jack is disguised as? I imagine he'd be a household servant, not too low in the ranks, but not too high up either.
(OOC: Jack, you are going to be taking the part of a footman, pretty high up the social servant ladder, and ant in accompanying ladies to balls.)
~
Meanwhile, unbeknownst to our heroes...

"News, Your Serenity," a cloaked Unicorn bowed before an elegantly dressed silver Unicorn. The silver Unicorn, Nicolo Foscari, grand Duke of Padova, head of the ruling Council and Senate, was still powerfully built and strong, but the white hairs of his mane were now thicker than the silver ones. His face was cold and harsh, his dark eyes shrewd, watchful, yet with a hint of weariness.

The weariness seemed to vanish as he regarded the newcomer. "Signore Benvolio, you may leave us," he ordered the younger Unicorn who served as his secretary. Benvolio Ariosto bowed with elegant politeness, gathering up his writing implements and papers. He left the room without noticing the brief flash of affection that softened the Doge's hard expression as Nicolo watched him go.

Then, when he was certain they were alone: "Your news, Signore Antonio."

"The human, Quentin, has arrived on the shores of Padova, my lord Duke. Shall I notify Optimus Argentus about this development?

Nicolo Foscari was silent a long moment. "No."

"The Armada expects me to apprise them of the movements of suspected criminals," he explained to his trusted agent. "I know my duty. I willingly perform it -- but here, the criminality is merely suspected. I looked up this Quentin and found no warrants for his arrest. Rumors that he is a pirate are simply that -- rumors."

"If I notify the Armada, he will be simply arrested on that suspicion. But if people are arrested on mere suspicion, we will have mass arrests here in Padova. The innocent as well as the guilty will be punished, and the people will be afraid. Frightened people are not prosperous people. Frightened, angry people foment rebellion. The Resistance is enough of a problem without swelling their ranks. No, we will continue to apply the rules of good government."

Nicolo's conscience pricked him. He knew full well he had not always followed those rules or ideals. What I have done is for the good of the people, he reminded himself firmly.

"But watch him! If this Quentin puts a toe out of line; if he steals so much as a grape from a shopkeeper, then there is cause for arrest. Notify the Armada at once if he breaks the law. If he does not, leave him be."

"Yes, Your Serenity," the other bowed and prepared to leave.

"No, stay a moment. Any news of the Vinaldis?"

"None of Duca Tomasso, Most Serene Prince. His family remains quietly at their villa, preparing for the Masked Ball."

"Very well. The others must continue their surveillance," Nicolo commanded. Only when his agent was gone did he allow himself the luxury of a deep sigh.

"Tomasso, my once friend -- traitor! It is your fault I am brought to this travesty of justice. Yet I know no other way to draw you out, other than to use your beloved family as bait to the hook."

Gunner's Mate
Oct 05, 2012
273
Anne Radcliffe on Oct 25, 2013 wrote:
(OOC: Jack, you are going to be taking the part of a footman, pretty high up the social servant ladder, and ant in accompanying ladies to balls.)
~
Meanwhile, unbeknownst to our heroes...

"News, Your Serenity," a cloaked Unicorn bowed before an elegantly dressed silver Unicorn. The silver Unicorn, Nicolo Foscari, grand Duke of Padova, head of the ruling Council and Senate, was still powerfully built and strong, but the white hairs of his mane were now thicker than the silver ones. His face was cold and harsh, his dark eyes shrewd, watchful, yet with a hint of weariness.

The weariness seemed to vanish as he regarded the newcomer. "Signore Benvolio, you may leave us," he ordered the younger Unicorn who served as his secretary. Benvolio Ariosto bowed with elegant politeness, gathering up his writing implements and papers. He left the room without noticing the brief flash of affection that softened the Doge's hard expression as Nicolo watched him go.

Then, when he was certain they were alone: "Your news, Signore Antonio."

"The human, Quentin, has arrived on the shores of Padova, my lord Duke. Shall I notify Optimus Argentus about this development?

Nicolo Foscari was silent a long moment. "No."

"The Armada expects me to apprise them of the movements of suspected criminals," he explained to his trusted agent. "I know my duty. I willingly perform it -- but here, the criminality is merely suspected. I looked up this Quentin and found no warrants for his arrest. Rumors that he is a pirate are simply that -- rumors."

"If I notify the Armada, he will be simply arrested on that suspicion. But if people are arrested on mere suspicion, we will have mass arrests here in Padova. The innocent as well as the guilty will be punished, and the people will be afraid. Frightened people are not prosperous people. Frightened, angry people foment rebellion. The Resistance is enough of a problem without swelling their ranks. No, we will continue to apply the rules of good government."

Nicolo's conscience pricked him. He knew full well he had not always followed those rules or ideals. What I have done is for the good of the people, he reminded himself firmly.

"But watch him! If this Quentin puts a toe out of line; if he steals so much as a grape from a shopkeeper, then there is cause for arrest. Notify the Armada at once if he breaks the law. If he does not, leave him be."

"Yes, Your Serenity," the other bowed and prepared to leave.

"No, stay a moment. Any news of the Vinaldis?"

"None of Duca Tomasso, Most Serene Prince. His family remains quietly at their villa, preparing for the Masked Ball."

"Very well. The others must continue their surveillance," Nicolo commanded. Only when his agent was gone did he allow himself the luxury of a deep sigh.

"Tomasso, my once friend -- traitor! It is your fault I am brought to this travesty of justice. Yet I know no other way to draw you out, other than to use your beloved family as bait to the hook."
The Duke was smart to keep an eye on Quentin, but what he didn't know was that Quentin took every precaution to make sure he was safe. The Armada platoon that ambushed Quentin and Valona burst through the door and collapsed from lack of steam.

The Duke: What is it, make it quick.

Clockwork Commander: Your highness, we have a problem.

The Duke: I told you to capture Quentin and bring him to me, that is the only problem I noticed.

Frightened Dragoon: B-b-b-b-b-b-but sir, Quentin is legally p-p-p-p-p-p-p-p-p-protected.

The Duke was shocked to hear this notion, then he was furious.

The Duke: WHAT?!

Nervous Battle Angel: It's true s-s-s-s-sir, every governmental and royal seal in the Spiral. He even somehow got a seal from here in Valencia.

The Duke: THAT'S IMPOSSIBLE, I MADE SURE NO ONE HAD A SEAL LIKE THAT! I EVEN DESTROYED MOST OF THEM AND GAVE THE LAST SIX TO KANE AND HIS COURT!

Clockwork Commander: Did you say last...oh no, you even gave one to Phule?!

The Duke: Of course, why?

The platoon glared at him.

Battle Angel: You idiotic, dimwitted, lame-brained, half-brained, NITWIT!

The Duke: HOW DARE YOU CALL ME THAT!

Clockwork Commander: Actually she is right, you entrusted something very important to the most untrustworthy and dimwitted clockwork in the Armada.

The Duke then realized his mistake, and then he slapped himself in the forehead.

The Duke: Then if he commits a crime, how are we going to arrest him?

The Doge: We can't, if we arrest someone that is protected by the entire Spiral, every leader will be up in arms against the world that arrested him. Even Kane would declare war on his home world, he respects the law more than anyone in the Spiral.

The Duke ground his teeth furiously.

The Duke: Blast that little brat Quentin. Leave us.

The platoon walked out the door.

The Doge: Don't worry sir, I will steal his letter of protection and tear it up at the ball. This way we will be able to arrest Quentin when he commits a crime at the ball.

The Doge left to go home and make final preparations for the ball. At the Vinaldi mansion, Quentin and Valona kept waiting and waiting, they are starting to get impatient.

Pirate Overlord
Mar 10, 2009
6079
Anne Radcliffe on Oct 24, 2013 wrote:
(OOC: I almost fell out of my chair, Omar, with you referencing some of the music I love. That is pretty exciting for me; I mean, most people think I am odd for thinking that the best pop tunes are the ones most popular in the Renaissance and Baroque)

Anne had been initially elated to find that they had safely passed the Armada inspection -- until Chrissy told her the news that there had been instead a loss. Her usually animated face became still and sober. Her first instinct was to do something about the abduction -- for this had been no proper arrest. Yet here she had no ship, and another mission to perform that she had already promised to do. She could only inwardly sigh, and like Chrissy, promise silently a rescue attempt later -- if their teacher of dance and social strategy on this trip was still alive.

Still, her heart couldn't help but feel a little cheered a moment later as she came on deck into the rarified atmosphere of the Spiral between Worlds. Though not entirely comfortable, as one's chest felt compressed and it was hard to breathe, the journey between Worlds was a dizzying combination of cosmic beauty and electric excitement. Anne always loved this journey, despite its dangerous nature, though if she was completely honest with herself, perhaps she loved it all the more because it was dangerous.

Yet, this time, there was something different. Music was playing, music with a rather mechanical air. Music that was familiar. Anne gasped, and immediately made a beeline for the music box.

Scarlet, more careful, made a grasp for Anne's sleeve but missed. "Fais attention! Anne, you don't know where it has come from!"

Anne heard the warning, briefly considered it, but then dismissed the caution. Something with such lovely music couldn't be bad, she rationalized rather naively. Her heart filled with the tune being played, and with such fullness of spirit, began to sing along:
Fortune, my foe, why doest thou frown on me?
And will thy favors never better be?
Wilt thou, I say, forever breed my pain?
And wilt thou not restore my joys again?

So very true, Anne thought with another inward sigh. But her mind led her to the very last verse as the others came around her to see the strange music box that had appeared on the vessel, and she sang again in her light soprano:
Die not in fear, nor live in discontent,
Be thou not slain, where never blood was meant.
Revive again, to faint thou has no need,
The less afraid, the better thou shalt speed.

Though the song was technically about the pursuit of love, Anne felt herself heartened and all the more ready to take up the fight against the Armada, even if it was in ways uncertain and unfamiliar
Chrissy was methodically picking up the scattered sewing items as her brain mulled over the outrageous arrest and considered possible ideas to start the idea process for rescue plans. Her mood was so deep it took a while for it to register in her brain that she was hearing music. She stood up, listening, spools of thread and floss in her hands forgotten. Then a beautiful voice started singing. It had the draw of an angel's voice. She tossed her items into the basket without looking and was pulled towards that soothing sound. Following the lilting melody she entered the galley and realized that her beloved friend Anne had gifts she was just now discovering. She stood transfixed and let that golden voice and the hauntingly uplifting lyrics bathe her wounded soul.
The song ended though it's effects lingered. She walked up to Anne and linked elbows with her. "That was beyond breathtaking dear Anne. I have no idea where that came from but whoever did this, I will be forever thankful. I was in such turmoil before yet now I feel that somehow, someway, we are gonna do this and right all wrongs in the process."

Captain
Mar 09, 2011
709
OOC: I've been thinking about Lizzy's made-up persona when she reaches the ball, and I'm thinking that she'll probably be the airy-fairy girl that doesn't really know much about the world that she lives in, happy through it all. XD It would also be kind of fun to kind of experiment with this different personality. I'm looking forward to this. Lizzy's going to be practicing this demeanor throughout the rest of the journey, and by the time The Masked Ball comes, she will seem like she had been this way her entire life.