DIPLO: Port Defiance and Undrowned Sons
((Moderate Risk event, social character focused, inform Apostate on signup if you have any character ties to Reveka Tyde, the Free Seas, or Fort Defiance. This is the second version of the Port Defiance Event))
Jan. 15, 2021, 7 p.m.
Meyneth's Dynamic GMing Room <OOC Room>
Comments and Log
Port Defiance is probably not what most would expect. First timers are almost always surprised in the sheer size of the place and the fact that, while there is a small island which serves as the central hub, almost all of the construction has taken place over the water, effectively creating a massive board walk city. Countless ships are docked at their respective bays, each one being assigned to a specific faction of pirates in order to avoid the inevitable shankings that occur when one has stolen someone else's favorite spot to park their ship. It happens from time to time still but at least this way it happens less.
There are many buildings that have no placards above them to let one know what they are, presumably the majority of them are warehouses and some of them are domiciles or hangouts for the various groups of scum and villainy that frequent the place but a few of them are taverns, shops, and places to eat; which seems almost mundane considering the location and its reputation. Already waiting at the end of the dock in which the Compact's representatives have debarked there is a gruff looking, well armed young woman who is waiting for them to approach -- one can tell from the way she is intensely staring them down and practically tapping her foot impatiently.
Braxas has decided to offer his silvertonuge services as a diplomat. This will be his first real assignment as a whisper apprentice. He is dressed in darkest umbra accented with amethhyst and wears a single silver earring, black lute strapped to his back. making his way into the city he approches thier contact with a serious look but a polite, faint smile. "Braxas of Arx. I represent Whisper House. Are you waiting for me and others by chance?" he is direct yet polite trying to charm her with polite brevity.
Anisha is fit for travel, perhaps, her lengthy hair set into an elaborate fall and braids with multiple sets of hair pins, her mask worn proud, and with a fur-trimmed coat worn over her shoulders. Aeterna and brocade gleams as she moves along, and she's adorned richly - no hiding who she is today. But then, she's here because of who she knows, and who knows her, and even those who don't know her face might recognise a description. So, she happily takes the lead, wandering alongside the apprentice, letting Braxas take the lead, inclining her head. "The Softest Whisper Anisha, also of Whisper House. A pleasure." She practically purrs, as she regards their presumable companion, studying her closely.
Given the location, Archeron has kept his Tyde colours showing with his bow and on the clothing peeking from below the armour. He pulls his cowl down as they step from the boat, the archer in his typical outfit for ranging - mixing land and sea elements, and the bow and axe slung over his shoulder. His eyes roam over the buildings across from the moorings, letting the others for a moment take a lead before he steps forward. "Lord Archeron Tyde." He offers by way of greeting, his smile finally making an appearance "I take it our dear Cousin is busy with other matters?"
For those who know Margot as the dainty and demure duchess of Tyde it may be hard to reconcile that woman with the one who embarks from Arx to Port Defiance; in armour she still has that perfect posture she's known for but it in her own way seems to take up a little more space, her steps are firmer, her shoulders held back and broad and the lighteness of the self at home that tries not to disturb others is completely absent. Her features usually known for being placid and calm have a harder edge too them too through still remain inscrutable as they arrive at the Port, sea blue eyes taking in the place and any changes since her last visit. One thumb hooks in her belt as she disembarks, her head nodding to their gruff looking escort. "Margot," She tells the woman, dispensing it would seem with titles. "Tyde."
Gwenna makes her way along the docks with everyone else, casting a curious glance here and there at the surroundings. These are not wide-eyed gawking, of course, but it wouldn't take a genius to guess this is likely her first visit to the place. Dressed in pale hued leathers, they, along with her jewelry, all seem to hint at some fondness for the northlands. Which becomes less surprising when she takes her turn at introductions. "Gwenna Redrain," is offered, sans title on the heels of Margot's lead.
If there is anyone that looks less like they belong to the Compact in the group, it could only be Athaur and that is doubtful. Eshra walks with a pride and nobility that comes from being Chieftain's daughter and later Voice of Rivenshari and that is where her likeness to the others end. Dressed in bright armor and hand painted cloak, the woman is a walking song. Dark wild curls fall down her back, bells are woven within, dozens of them, hanging from braids, ears, belt, even boots. The Rivenshari's gaze slides from surroundings to those she travels with then to their escort. "Eshra Rivenshari." answers, her voice dark and smoke with its thick accent.
Athaur nimbly jumps from the boat, a bounce in his step as he makes his way down the boardwalk. His eyes curiously take in the port they find themselves in. Like his sister, he to wears armor and bells. Unlike Eshra, his bells are far more numerous. Each step they take a ringing for noise. He glances over towards the individual waiting for them and flashes a charming smile. "Greetings to you. Athaur of the Rivenshari."
"Lexir Pravus," Lexir announces to the rest as he disembarks, a vaguely thoughtful mien etched on his features. He looks about, his clothing dark, a hand resting casually upon the pommel of a sword hanging from his waist.
Since the apprentice Whisper is leading the way he gets the brunt of the woman's crass snort of amusement. "Aye," is her only response to Braxas before she offers him her own faint smile. Anisha is hot on his heels though and she gets a much more appreciative look, perhaps even lascivious as the woman gently but firmly moves aside the young apprentice to step in close. "I bet ye be soft alright." She leans in and takes a whiff of the woman, probably trying to commit as much of her to memory before she has to move on and gives her attention elsewhere, though her look on Anisha lingers. Archeron is given a mere sucking of the teeth and a deadpan expression.
"Reveka does what she wants and I certainly ain't keepin her schedule eh. If she shows, she shows." Eshra, Gwenna, Lexir and Athaur are given appraising looks but she gives them a nod of respect after all. It is Margot who sets the woman straight, making her shoot up ram-rod straight and clear her throat. The corsair's hat on her head removed to reveal nappy, braided, brunette hair. "Duchess Tyde. Welcome, welcome. I been sent to fetch ye meself. Had I known you'd be coming with so many, lookin the way they do and all I woulda brought me a proper escort. As is, Cap'n Lyra's waitin and she's eager to be meetin ya."
Politely she makes a sweeping gesture in what she thinks is fancy for 'come along now' and begins to lead the way through Port Defiance's impressive streets while the soft sounds of water splashing against the wooden pillars below accompany them throughout. People stare and some look like they want a piece of that pie until they realize that there's some Tyde colors being displayed which quickly makes them back off.
Halfway to their destination, a very handsome merchant of middling years seems to catch the eye of the Softest Whisper. He is a purveyor of steelsilk from the looks of it, stolen or otherwise. He seems to recognize her though and heads her off to have a quick word about something, probably trying to get her to buy his wares. After that it is a straight shot to the docking bay of the Seven Siren Sisters, but there is room to talk among themselves or ask questions of their mysterious guide if they so wish.
Braxas Braxas looks amused but is undetered. He smirks at the woman. he moves close and lowers his voice to be discreet. "You have good taste. The softest whisper is lovely. I could put in a word for you to aid your attempt perhaps? Maybe you could help me in return. I need informnation, anything that will help rsolve and understand whats happening here aye?" he uses his charm and diplomacy, meanwhile he watches her and his surroundings carefully. A man of the streets.
It pays to have an in-house alchemist making custom scents just for you, and Anisha gives the corsair woman a half-lidded smile in turn, canting her head back just so, as if to invite a little extra whiff at her neck. Giving her a final wink, as she moves alongside Braxas, to make sure the nobility can follow more easily. Leaving the discussion with the corsair to her apprentice, Anisha takes a moment to regard the surrounding area, the people, the bustle. Exits; ships, particular figures. Wheels within wheels, while they begin moving. She's almost absent-minded, as they go along. Some of this company she knows better than others, and Lexir, Margot, and Athaur receive small glances as they move. A slight sigh of relief at the people being dissuaded by Tyde colours. Which is about when she meets the merchant. Pausing, in their walk, she murmurs quietly, giving a gentle nod, and a whisper - a very soft whisper - of assent. But in this place, at this time, it is best not to fall too far behind.
Braxas checks charm and diplomacy at normal. Braxas is marginally successful.
"Reveka has always done as she wished, within the bounds of her values. Justice for all, absolute, swift and mercilessly." Comes Archeron's reply. The Tyde ranger reaches back to ensure everything is nicely secured on his back - it doesn't do to have an axe fall off and make everyone randomly attack "And I do not think you need worry about an escort - I am sure no-one here would start any trouble." Archeron dares to answer for Margot before giving a look towards the others before he returns to their escort as they stroll along "It must be a difficult job, keeping so many factions here and separate. And ensuring they prey only on those Reveka deems as fair game."
Margot looks over the woman a moment and nods, "Thank you. Archeron is correct though I am sure we will make due without any fanfare." She favors the woman with a faint smile before they set out. The duchess looks around at the people and the structures as they move through the port city, certainly making sure the Tyde Signant ring on her thumb (clearly it was designed for a hand bigger than her feminine one) is visible. She falls into step near Anisha after making a note of where Archeron is in relation to herself. "I forgot how comfortable this place feels," she notes not no one in particular. But being rather revered here after having to fight tooth and nail for any respect at all back home...
Gwenna returned the woman's nod with one of her own and fell into easy enough step along with the others. "I bet the whiskey around here is impressive," is remarked somewhat conversationally, if mostly to herself. She seems relieved, much like Anisha, when Tyde's colors appear to keep the party safe. She otherwise stays mostly quiet for now, just another diplomat along on a diplomatic sort of endeavor. Perhaps the history between House Tyde and House Redrain is part of her being here as well, even if most of them were babies or just thoughts during the Tyde Rebellion. Whatever the case, between the charm of the Whispers and the regal voices of the Tyde nobility, Gwenna appears content to follow and listen to the conversations around her, or until she's spoken to.
There is an ease to Eshra's steps as they walk along the boardwalks, as if being above water instead of solid ground was somehow more natural. At Athaur's side, there is no other remarks to their companions though she does tilt her head to speak low to Athaur, her eyes crinkling at the corners when he answers her. With the look, appraisal given to her, she meets the woman's eyes fully, brow arched just a little but nods in return when it is given. It's however Margot that gets the Rivenshari's attention, it's not the first Diplomatic mission she has been on with the Duchess and learned well into it to respect the woman's abilities and is very aware of how those around them react to the colors of Tyde. For now, she follows along with the others, hands folded behind her, gaze slowly moving over those around them, taking note of not only the merchant that pulls Anisha aside but those around him. For a long moment her gaze will settle on the Whisper as she speaks, noteing any change of expression until she is out of easy eye sight.
Athaur keeps pace with his sister, a jump in his step. He returns the guides nod with one of his own before he returns to looking around at the Port itself. He looks for all the world as if he was on some sort of vacation rather then a diplomatic mission in a hive of pirates and thieves.
Lexir strolls along near the rear of the group, taking quiet measure of his fellow Compact notables and the occupants of the port alike, declining to volunteer words unless addressed, and ensuring one hand is never far from his sword, even if it's just a casual rest.
While they walked to the bay belonging to the Seven Siren Sister the majority of the Compact's people were quiet and that seemed to bother their guide not one bit. When Braxas spoke up with his needs she seemed pensive for a while before she acquiesced his request as much as she was willing to at least. "You folk ain't the only ones interested in gainin' allies for this war. There's a fellow from the Crimson Skull Reavers here too and he's got a lotta coin. More coin an I ever seen in me life and I seen a lotta coin."
Her laugh is scummy but it's on brand. When they finally reach the bay of the Seven Siren Sisters they notice two things, there is no simple gangplank to a waiting galley or caravel even. There's a set of steps switchbacked up to a long walkway to the deck of a massive ship -- for those who have the eye it could be from Weija or Jadairal -- it's painted with rich red, gold, and yellow lacquer and is probably four or five decks tall.
Once they reach the deck of the ship it is plain to see this warship is massive compared to most but for those who have seen the Ordered Path or the Nemei this is still quite small in comparison to the peerless flagship belonging to Emissary Zulana. Another thing one would notice is the all-female crew. There is not a single male among them.
It's quite a walk to the large audience chamber where Captain Lyra waits, sitting on a wooden, cushioned throne in a lavish silk robe and tunic dress in the style of Weija. Her eyes do not possess the epicanthic fold commonplace to Arvum and they angle elegantly upwards. Pale skin and silvery blonde hair falls majestically behind her in a waterfall and from the seats they are all offered it's plain to see the shiny black nail polish on her fingers. There's a very handsome man with salt and pepper hair that is shorn close to his scalp and he offers a shrewd look of disdain to the Compact's people.
Clearly this was the representative sent by the other pirate conglamerate and he did not look very friendly at all. Lyra waits patiently for people to get settled, and perhaps for introductions as well.
Braxas nods to thier escort in understanding, letting the matter drop after a simple reply. "Coin is quite tempting yes. Money makes the world work." Then he is quiet till they reach thier destination. Approching the Captain and pirate representative he smiles a small yet dazzling smile. "Greetings. Captain Lyra yes? And greetings to you as well. I am Braxas of House Whisper. This is Softest Whisper Anisha and my fellows from the Compact." That voice is low and deep the rich voice trying to sooth and charm them both as he makes an introduction, charming and down to business as he studies them both with interest.
Anisha glances to Margot, with a little quirk of her lips. "It does seem like a place that could agree with any number of sentiments and personalities. Personally, I find it reminds me, in some strange ways, of Whisper House." She notes. "And of my first journey, learning... Mm, a new place. New rules. But so much promise." She adds, pausing now to listen to their guide - and looking to the massive ship. Of course, Anisha was once the protege of a Jadairal Emissary, so she has in fact been on even larger ships - not that she seems any less impressed when facing the might of the Seven Siren Sisters. The crew, oh, she notices that. Anisha does appreciate the female form, after all. So she moves with quiet steps, heeled boots against the wooden deck, her skirts whispering as she sways at the hips, and enters the audience chamber alongside the rest.
Braxas introduces her, and she sketches a deep curtsey - noting the presence of the first man on the vessel, and pausing before she speaks, holding her position. "A pleasure. More specifically, I give you Prince Lexir Pravus, Princess Gwenna Redrain, Duchess Margot Tyde, Lord Acheron Tyde, Marquis Athaur Rivenshari, and Lady Eshra Rivenshari." She counts off in quick succession. "We are grateful you have chosen to see us."
Anisha checks charm and etiquette at normal. Anisha is marginally successful.
Braxas checks charm and etiquette at normal. Braxas is marginally successful.
"Is that so, Cousin?" Archeron asks of Margot, his lip curling up in a half grin "I must admit I canot say I am that familiar with the place. My last trip was a lot shorter and more...whirlpooly." The large ships are a bit less of interest to Archeron than the people on them, taking careful look as they make their way to the bay and up the boarding ramp. Archeron leans back to speak to Margot as they move up "Life would be easier if we could go direct to our cousin, Margot." He points out but then, as they move onto the deck, he turns his head back. As Anisha introduces him, he bows his head "Captain." he offers in greeting, but for now the voice stays silent on anything more - better to let Margot talk while he surveys the deck to try and spot anything odd. Other than gender make up.
Archeron checks charm and etiquette at normal. Archeron is marginally successful.
Margot cannot help it, seeing the female only crew the curve of her lips sharpens some what imagining the epileptic fit of fury that some of her vassels would have. Thankfully the only Mourning Isles lord in this party was reared on the mainland. A little laugh slips past her lips before her features return to their more serious business set. "Life would be a lot easier Archeron, if a lot of things were different, but we can only work with what is infront of us." Entering the chamber she looks over the woman on the throne, her hand raising to rest over her own heart, head bowing to the Captain in greeting, "A pleasure to meet you Captain." She turns her attention to the dour seeming man and nods to him as well, no need to be uncivilized after all.
Margot checks charm and etiquette at normal. Margot is marginally successful.
Gwenna regards many of the intriguing and, surely, unexpected sights much as she did the area around the docks: her interest is evident, but the Redrain is (hopefully!) schooled enough not to let herself look like she just feel off the icicle truck from Farhaven. When they've landed themselves in position before Captain Lyra, she gives a polite nod of her head to the Captain first, and then the fellow serving them the disdainful look. Manners, you know. There's a hint of a smile as Braxas and Anisha once again expertly make introduction, and the Redrain dips her head again when her name is mentioned. "Thank you for seeing us, Captain," she does think to offer as well.
Gwenna checks charm and etiquette at normal. Gwenna is marginally successful.
Eshra whistles low and appreciative of the ship as they come near, for the first time a grin slowly spreading across her lips. "This so would not fit on the rivers." said aside to Athaur, her gaze shifting to him as they climb to the deck. She changes as they step back on the ship, there is a natural movement of one that learned to walk on decks before they ever stepped on land. For the most part she simply follows along with the group for now, the sound of her bells mixing with the sounds of Athaur's and becoming a part of the atmosphere. Taking in all of what lays out in front of them, the crew are studied, the man, then Lyra herself. It seems really that Eshra has nothing to say at the moment but then Braxas introduces her and her dark, smoky voice cuts through the room. "Admiral." then looking again to Lyra. "Admiral Eshra of the Rivenshari." there's no apology to the blatant correction given simply a slight nod of her head to the woman.
Athaur looks up at the ship and nods in agreement with Eshra. "Oh, there's no possible way." He tilts his head to one side. "I am curious how they manage to build these ships so large." He makes his way up the ship his body moving in easy motion with the rocking of the waves. He looks around at the crew, lifting his brows at the all female aspect of it before turning to their host. He dips his head with a wide smile for Lra. "A pleasure to meet you Captain."
Athaur checks charm and etiquette at normal. Athaur is marginally successful.
Lexir trudges aboard besides the other in his spot by the rear, casually glancing his shoulder as they do. His fingers twitch a little, and the interior of the ship (and its exterior as well, if one is to be frank) prompts an avid look of interest from the dark-eyed prince. The people, too, an open, naked sort of curiosity in every little facet of their dress, their behavior. When it comes to an end, and they're before Lyra and introduced, he responds with a short dip of his head. "Captain."
Lexir checks charm and etiquette at normal. Lexir fails.
Eshra checks charm and etiquette at normal. Eshra is successful.
As the Softest Whisper gives out introductions Lyra observes her with a placid expression, giving a nod of affirmation as she finishes. "Thank you Softest Whisper Anisha. Your introductions were very to the point and oh so lovely. You will be our hostess tonight and come pour the drinks, you'll find an assortment of bottles in the liquor cabinet just over yonder." Her voice is simply melodic. It is easy to see how they came upon the name if all her sisters are like her. Archeron's greeting is given a firm nod and though her brow twitches she smiles exuberantly. "Well met Lord Tyde. Your reputation precedes you, I've been positively dying to meet you and," with a regal gesture to the ruler of House Tyde,"Duchess Margot. My. My. You are every bit what I expected."
Lyra can't help herself, she walks over to the Duchess and caresses her face while examining her like a master assesses a new slave's worth. Imperious as she may be she is sweet and the kiss she plants on the woman's hand is one of unexpected grace. "You are all welcome and, what is that thing you all talk about when people are safe from being slaughtered in someone else's home? Sanctuary?" She waves this off as if this is of no importance and she didn't /really/ care.
"Oh come on now, don't be rude. Introduce yourself," she says to the Crimson Skull Reaver's representative with an icy undertone to her singsong voice. He sighs and clears his throat so he can tend to it while Lyra moves to Lexir, Eshra, Gwenna, and Braxas to give them a thorough looksie.
"Cap'n Jackabee Briggs of Crimson Tide, though I am here to speak on behalf of the Crimson Skull Reavers as a whole. With that being said m'lords, m'ladies, Cap'n, everyone else. Can we get on with this? I ain't got all day and yer faces are all wearin on me patience." Lyra laughs aloud and moves back to plant her hands on Jackabee's shoulders, roughly shoving him down into his seat before giving him a 'say something about it' look and moving back to her seat where Anisha better be pouring tea.
"Well, now. Isn't this a sight to bring a tear to the eye." The voice is silken smooth, with words drawn out here and there in an languid tone which almost masks the precisely-spoken pronunciation of a privileged education. But there's a sense that it's silk wrapped around sharpened steel; if the languid tones were a cat stretching itself in a sunbeam, it would be a cat all too ready to turn and toy with its prey. "Seeing more than one with the colors or sigil of House Tyde displayed openly, all gathered together for a pleasant little chat. But I can't help but wonder... are you here as Thrax's mouthpiece, or the Compact? Or is House Tyde making a bid for something all on its own? And with some competition, no less."
The woman standing in the entryway takes in the assembled cast of actors, regarding the scene with a smirk one might almost call amused. She's clearly a child of the sea; what was once fair skin has been slightly darkened and left freckled by long exposure to sun and wind atop the waves, her golden-red hair loose and teased into waves by that wind. But her sea-blue eyes are shadowed, cold filled with a furious hunger when she speaks the word 'Thrax'.
This, then, is the self-proclaimed 'queen of the Free Seas'. The apparent ruler of Port Defiance. The one-time lieutenant and successor to Koraj Marin, and -- according to some -- possibly Leviathan's Herald.
This, then, is Reveka Tyde.
...who now glances over at Lyra. "Don't let me interrupt, Captain. Consider me merely an interested observer. For the moment."
Braxas nods to the Captains. "A pleasure Captain Lyra, Captain Jackabee. I will do my best not to waste your time. Time is precious and I'm sure you have better things to do." Braxas turns up his charm. His deep voice trying to sooth and draw the ears his way. He tries to draw Lyra's eyes, his attire fine and his body making it look even finer perhaps, the man not above using that to aid him. He smiles to Anisha. "The Softest Whisper is an excellent hostess. You will be delighted I am sure." He smiles warmly. he waits for the tea to be poured. "If you like I could offer music as a peace offering? I play a good lute. Then we can discuss things perhaps?" The arrival of Reveka makes him curious and he bows politely then refocuses on the matter at hand.
Braxas checks charm and performance at hard. Braxas fails.
Margot checks charm and diplomacy at hard. Margot is marginally successful.
Braxas checks composure and performance at hard. Braxas is marginally successful.
Anisha inclines her head, and moves, taking her time in looking for the right drinks, making sure she's picking out a few pieces, checking in with the individuals for their favours - including Reveka Tyde and her captains. And, as she moves, she gently clarifies a statement here, asks a probing question there - all to underscore Margot's role as their leader, and very much as the Duchess of Tyde, first and foremost. And aren't we all so very admiring of all she has accomplished?
Anisha checks charm and manipulation at hard. Anisha is marginally successful.
Eshra checks charm and diplomacy at normal. Eshra is successful.
Anisha checks charm and manipulation at normal. Anisha is marginally successful.
Having bowed at the Captain's compliment of his reputation, Archeron's eyes quickly lift as a familiar voice rings out "And since when were Tyde afraid of being so, Cousin? Margot, Lethe and I never had to hide who we were. And I think you know well enough that Tyde speaks as Tyde wishes, as our parents always did. If things suit others as well, then well, more is good for Tyde. Justice is your work, Cousin. To us falls the rebuilding, so the others might have a home looked over by statues of those that fell."
Archeron checks wits and propaganda at normal. Archeron is successful.
Athaur checks charm and diplomacy at normal. Athaur is successful.
Margot's fair brow lifts just a touch at Lyra's words and even a touch higher when the woman comes and actually touches her, the duchess is not after all known for allowing many in proximity to her; BUT feeling bold or comfortable she does let the Captain touch her face, and indeed even kiss her hand, her gaze holding Lyra's curiously. Her lips part to offer a greeting to Captain Briggs but the arrival draws all of the Duchess' attention. She looks over her slowly and then smiles the sort of smile that rarely graces her lips, broad with a flash of teeth and a little bit sharklike. "Cousin." She greets. "We don't come for Thrax. Though you will see several shades of the Compact have come as well. I have no doubt you your people have noted the conflict with Sungreet and now the Eurusi vessels. I have come to ask if your fleet and people would be willing to join the Tyde fleet in pushing back the skal'daja." Her attention returns to Lyra, "Last year, in a fight against Sungreet some of my vassels bulked at heeding my call because I am a woman, I should love to see them wet themselves seeing you and your crew tear through our foes while they whimper pitifully in their pathetic little long ships."
Gwenna is clearly intrigued by Lyra, and there's a faint smile - if brief - at the breezy way the Captain speaks to them. Brief, though, because the full weight of the danger in all of this is not utterly lost on the Redrain, by any means. Her study shifts to the Crimson Tide captain, but it's the /other/ woman's voice that gets her to turn her head. She manages to school her features and dip her head respectfully to Reveka before glancing to Archeron, Margot, and then back to Captain Lyra. "Tyde inspires many with the great strides they've made and continue to make. As well, they make allies." Margot's words make Gwenna smile a bit wider and she nods a couple of times. "That would be quite the sight."
Gwenna checks charm and diplomacy at normal. Gwenna is marginally successful.
Eshra returns the appraisal of Lyra with as much blatancy as the woman affords her. She even manages to arch a brow as if considering what she sees. What she does not do is comment, the Rivenshari being one of few words. When Reveka shows up, Eshra's appraisal moves towards the woman who's name is whispered by many, her appraisal no less blatant before turning to listen to the others. At one point during the pitch her voice rising again. "Nor would it be the first time that those that have been at odds before join forces against an enemy that causes a deeper threat." not actually stating but leaving it hanging there that the Rivenshari themselves only years prior too great pride in out smarting and at times killing both Oathlander Knights and Thrax Reavers. But there is humor there in her eyes as she arches her brows at the Captain, then accepts a drink, tossing it back without hesitation.
Athaur chuckles softly with his sister's joke and lifts his shoulders in a shrug. "Indeed. The compact is about working together towards common threats after all. Should it be so strange that some of us actually pursue that line of thinking?"
Lyra seems intent to listen with rapt fascination, the music as played by Braxas makes her do a nervous double take at the man before she outright shakes her head and laughs extremely uncomfortably. "No. Please. No more for now unless you can actually play that thing. It's not an easy instrument to master I'll give you that.
Lexir dispenses with flattery. In fact, he dispenses with words entirely, letting the ladies plus Acheron and Braxus do the talking - or performing in the latter's case. He remains attentive to his surroundings otherwise, keeping a close watch on the two corsair captains, a piece of silver appearing and disappearing in the palm of his hand.
Lexir checks dexterity and legerdemain at normal. Lexir fails.
Lyra seems intent to listen with rapt fascination, the music as played by Braxas makes her do a nervous double take at the man before she outright shakes her head and laughs extremely uncomfortably. "No. Please. No more for now unless you can actually play that thing. It's not an easy instrument to master I'll give you that." With that aside her attention is given back to the assembled. The Duchess makes a good argument it seems, Lyra is nodding in assent and silence, the words of Margot's peers and allies seem to help drive home the point but as she sits there deliberating on how to respond the CSR representative, Captain Briggs, stands up with the sound of his chair scratching the wood floor drawing a languished sigh from the silvery blonde siren captain.
"That's all fine and dandy Cap'n and umm Majesty," to be fair this native to the Saffron Chains did not know the proper way to address Reveka but he seems to fancy her a Queen,"they haven't offered you nuffin and when you really think about it you were an enemy not too long ago. If they win how long do you think it'll be before they set their sights on Port Defiance! No. I say you take the heaps of gold my masters be offerin, and a nice chunk of the land in the Chains we be snatchin."
Lyra's brow quirks at this and a wide smile creeps onto her face as she clearly considers what the man is saying. "People of the Compact. You all paint a pretty picture, us fighting side by side as gallant heroines of Arvum. Our superior warships smashing the Skal'dajan longships to bits but at what point are you going to give me what I need? At what point am I to take your word that you won't, as Captain Jackabee says, turn your sails towards us when you've dealt with the Eurusi?"
Lexir's silence is probably what draws the attention of the Piratesse who simply stares for a long while before looking to Anisha and ushering her close with a gesture. They exchange a whisper as if she has always been Lyra's confidante and then she laughs softly under her breath and waves off the Softest. "Ooooh behave you. Yes yes. The Duchess does make a good point but really, really I haven't heard anything being offered. I mean, Jackabee is willing to give us riches and land. What about you people?" At this she glances aside to Reveka, as if seeing what she thinks about all of this.
Braxas gracefully pulls out his lute. He considers a moment then begins to play. The tune is low, soft and haunting like a wind over a dark sea, mysterious and dark. It is not played as well as he would like and as his fingers dance he furrows his brow and focuses trying a bit harder now, changing it up with a natural shift to the tune after a few notes. Ge gives Lyra a gentle look. "Give me a minute, please." Now the music grows calmer soothing and calm, deep and rich and then a jaunty sound fit for sailors celebrating comes into play. Those nimble fingers dance as Braxas tries to redeem himself. He too begins to circle, quick footwork carrying him in an attempted merry jig as he plays what sounds like a shanty now.
Braxas checks charm and performance at hard. Braxas is marginally successful.
Anisha gives a glance to Braxas, but behind that quarter-mask in mirror-silver and that schooled composure of the Perfect Whisper, well, no unease can be sean - she does smile, however, as the dulcimer tones of the lute begin, giving an encouraging nod. A far better thing to play his own instrument. Happily, she pours tea - or other drinks - and once she's finished - other than moving to make refreshments, she more often than not finds herself somewhat closer to Lyra, within conversational distance of Reveka, and within scowling distance of Jackabee. She gives approving nods at the various points made, and offers her own thoughts in murmurs - not in the least when she's called the side. While her answer remains too quiet, for Lyra alone, she does lean in against that throne and Whispers at length to the Seven Siren Sisters' captain. All the while, her gaze going to her compatriot, her gaze lightly impish. Her smile, encouraging.
Reveka glances over at Margot at the Duchess' words. "As satisfying as it would no doubt be to put such vassals in their place, cousin," she replies, "it seems to me that there's little to my benefit there. While the Dune Kingdoms are no allies of mine, neither have they been enemies; they've proven willing to do business with us in the past. Now, my corsairs are free to make whatever alliances they choose, so long as I don't call the sails." One assumes this is the Port Defiance equivalent of calling the banners. She nods towards Lyra, as if to underscore that statement. "Otherwise the Free Seas would not be free."
Now the pirate queen steps away from the wall, studying the duchess thoughtfully. "You should always enter a situation knowing what you gain from it; as a leader yourself, I imagine you'd agree, family or no. Captain Lyra's questions are excellent ones. Our guest here, his masters are offering a great deal of gold to come join their efforts; what does the Compact offer?" A pause, and her gaze is a bit sharper as she meets Margot's gaze unwaveringly. "Or perhaps, what does /Tyde/ offer? After all, the fleet of the Free Seas is not the only one at my command."
"Mm, thank you for reminding me, Margot. I must invite our dear vassals' heirs to Tyde Hall for dinner so we can discuss their lack of faith. And remind them the tithe Tyde paid." Archeron comments aside to Margot before he straightens up and looks across to assess this rival captain. Archeron stays quiet for a moment before he adds "The Captain is quite a shrewd merchant, it seems. To offer to pay you with coin and land you yourselves would take from us. It seems Port Defiance could stay neutral, and pick over bones of whoever loses and still have all he offers that they want." Archeron's head turns and he glances out towards the sea "Tyde has no interest in fights with Port Defiance - there are precious enough few Tydes that we can afford to fight one another." At that Archeron leans in to murmer something to Margot.
Sunrise, lilac breasted roller arrives, delivering a message to Archeron before departing.
Margot looks over to Briggs and then Reveka and Lyra, "Coin? We can get coin if that's what you really wish but you seem to have plenty." She sets a hand on her hip and looks over Archeron, saying a quiet word to him before she steps closer to the women. "I'll do better even though. There is a sheltered cove on Tyde Island where a village of Shavs used to reside, they have long since become protigals and have relocated to my Halls. Captain Lyra I will give this land, a barony's worth at least, to you to set up a port if you like. Ease your ability to ... sell your wares to the compact. No port taxes to me necessary, I'll take my cut off those reselling your wares afterwards." Her shrewd gaze moves to Reveka, "I offer to support the family here but you know I will do that regardless of what you opt to do. Instead I will offer you this, you will, if you aid us, advance Tyde's position and put Victus Thrax in debt to both yourself and myself. But further I will give you this, when my daughter Cleo is of age to be out of the nursery, I will send her here. She can learn from your Captains, and be a reminder that blood is thicker than all of the water in the oceans between us."
Gwenna shifts to stand a bit closer to Lexir after watching him doing a bit of trickery with a piece of silver. "Could you teach me that sometime? It'd be a great trick to liven up some of my duller financial meetings," is said quietly. With that bit of business taken care of, she then focuses once again on the task at hand, and the speakers as they add to the discussion. The Redrain's brows knit briefly, and her lips purse as her thoughts seem to almost dance across her features. Braxas and Anisha's charms certainly aren't hurting, and the Rivenshari and Tydes all make remarks that lead to a nod here and there from Gwenna. It's the latter of Margot's promises that leads the Redrain to bite her lip briefly. "I have nothing of such weight to offer, but if Margot needs any aide from me, I won't hesitate to help her in this. For whatever that may be worth."
Eshra doesn't say a word, not at this point, her quick gaze moves from one to the other watching curiously but for now she makes no offers, waiting to see how what is on the table is received before adding anything at all. What she does do however is lean in to speak softly to her brother in ravashari.
Athaur turns to watch Braxas curiously, lifting his brows as the man pulls out a Lute. He narrows his eyes slightly, though lets out a breath of relief when the music starts to play. He nods his head back and forth to the music, the bells on his person ringing along with the movements. He shifts his eyes over towards the negotiations for a moment before he leans in to listen to Eshra, responding quietly to her
"Sometime," Lexir affirms to Gwenna amidst the buzz of conversation and negotiation, shifting his attention back that way thereafter.
This time when the music plays Braxas does well and Lyra seems somewhat calmed by this and a gentle look overtakes her countenance. Her cup is held out once more for Anisha to fill as she listens to Reveka speak with all the attention she deserves. When she is told that her questions were excellently put forth her eyes alight with joy but she does well to contain it. Archeron speaks but he is mostly addressing Reveka so the eldest siren sister listens to what Margot is saying with an ever growing look of interest.
Gwenna's comment makes her eyes narrow a bit in amusement as she seems to consider something that maybe the princess had overlooked but for now she says nothing while giving the rest of the assembled a bit of side eye since they are choosing silence. Captain Jackabee stands up again,"Majesty, Cap'n this is nonsense. We have made the superior offer here and these wretches can ha-" Lyra glares at him with a smoldering look that could put out flame and she speaks just as coldly. "Be. Quiet."
Briggslooks ready to object but the presence of Reveka Tyde makes him think twice so he shuts it down quick and takes his seat again flustered as he may be. Lyra looks back to the Compact's people with a warm smile on her face. "Duchess Tyde that -is- a very good offer. I'm really entertaining it. Giving us land under your protection is a great counter to their offer but we have a livelihood to maintain. Mouths to feed, bodies to clothe, the works. I see before me the Voice of Thrax, the Voice of Redrain, a Prince of Pravus, and though I may have this wrong you both speak for Rivenshari as well yes? Good. You have the power to grant us Letters of Marque so we can conduct our business without worry of being assailed in your domains. Now, I won't speak for Hers Truly," Lyra says with a gesture to Reveka,"You really, really need more help than what I can give you though. If you were all willing to sign a contract and promise that your respective Houses or fealties in some instances would not challenge and/or take up arms against Port Defiance in the future I think you would leave here with much, much more than you ever imagined."
Reveka's gaze sharpens as she considers Margot. "Now that," she muses slowly, "is a /fascinating/ offer, duchess. Another Tyde raised free of Thrax's shadow, and a chance for Aniketos to know more of his own kin, besides." Her tone is actually approving -- even warm. "A clever offer... though I wonder what others might think of it. After all, few in the Compact would have the strength to make such a bargain."
"But I will not call the sails of all the Free Seas, not for that alone; my corsairs deserve rewards of their own if I'm to do so, as Captain Lyra rightly suggests. But I will offer my own." With that, Reveka's smile widens; it has, after all, been several years now since she took action on a grand scale, and that hunger in her eyes sharpens. "I believe I'll take that bargain, Cousin. Whether or not enough is offered to call the sails, I'll sail with House Tyde on my own behalf, as a corsair of the Free Seas rather than their ruler. And the Drowned Fleet will sail in my wake, at your call."
Braxas smiles for Captain Lyra and Reveka both. A charming, dazzling smile as that bright playful sea shanty continues to delight the ears. He focuses on his music, not speaking for now. Leting the others handle the talking while he provides music to sooth and delight.
Anisha listens cautiously, refilling Captain Lyra's tea, before taking a moment to do the rounds and check on the drinks of everyone else - starting with Reveka Tyde. Pausing, now, canting her head, offering a small smile. "If you'll allow me, Highnesses, Lords, Ladies, Messeres and Free Folk," The last to Reveka Tyde, Lyra, and yes, even Jackabee.
"The Letters of Marquee offer, essentially, a non-aggression pact between those who accept them," An acknowledgement here, to Reveka's words. "And free reign and support against the enemies of the signatories. Such as, in this instance, certain forces that want nothing more than to take freedom from others, and are none too particular about where they raise their chains." She gives a gentle shrug. "More-over, this presents excellent opportunities - Port Defiance is, as Captain Lyra points out, a land that needs certain things. Things that Arvum has plenty of. In turn - The Free Seas provide access to interesting goods which, well, the Rivenshari are in an excellent position to spread deep into the mainland with their expertise in the rivers, and which having ports of call in multiple realms would only benefit us - even after the war is won." She draws breath, and takes a step back. "The people of the Compact hold their word as bond. Even those who cannot speak for their houses can promise to bring word back. And as a Whisper, well, settling contracts like this is part of my remit. If it pleases, I can take what is agreed to here to the other Great Houses of the Compact, and attempt to find agreements there as well."
"Perhaps one day, Cousin, you might find a way to put down the burdens you picked up to defend yourself and find a way to be happy again as Lady Reveka Tyde." Archeron suggests to Reveka, though there is a touch of uncertainty or nervousness. The nervousness that one might have when one's duchess exposes the house to potential outrage from liege and Faith alike. "For Tyde's sake, Port Defiance has long held our ships inviolate. We have never moved against it in return. And as a baroness, if I understand the deal, Captain Lyra and her people will have all the protection and freedom they might require. Freedom without surety is just enslavement to the whims of others, after all." Archeron gives another look back to Margot.
Margot listens to Reveka and nods. "We rise cousin. I will take that." She nods and looks back to the scions of the other houses to see what they have to add to sweeten the pot. "There is of course the opportunity to negotate a greater agreement of neutrality with the Compact as a whole after the fighting is done, once they see what you could do... for and against them. I learned some time ago that we can shape the world we wish and being here I am reminded of that." She steps closer to Reveka to offer her hand to her, leaning in closer.
Gwenna pinches the bridge of her nose. "I feel like this gets asked for way more often than would be prudent for my health," is a murmur to herself. She lowers her hand and lets out a sigh, inclining her head a moment before looking to Lyra, Reveka, and the others as they speak in turn. "Perhaps there are better riches, bigger deals." She pauses to glance a Briggs. "And while the Dune Kingdoms may not be enemies to you now, perhaps they will turn their eyes toward you should they succeed against us. Maybe that's of little concern, given your talents and skills in battle. It may not even happen, but what good would the gold be if they put you in chains as well? I may be daft to appeal in such a manner, but felt as though I should." She glances to the others again, maybe apologetically if /that/ fails horribly, and then back to Lyra. "Respectfully, Captain, I'm not sure I have such power, though am no lawyer to be sure on the matter. I don't wish to make promises that might mean I'm breaking other oaths. It sounds like this is a possibility, however, and can be negotiated. It is something I will support without question."
Gwenna checks charm and diplomacy at hard. Gwenna is marginally successful.
Anisha checks charm and manipulation at hard. Anisha is marginally successful.
Athaur blinks a few times, turning to look at Lyra. "Letters of Marque?" He looks over to the rest of the Arvum Deligation. "Letters of Marque? Is that a thing that can be done?" Athaur throws his hands up into the air, letting out a string of words in Ravashari as he paces back and forth. The frantic motions sending the bells he wears into a thunderous cacophany. Though he pauses, turning towards Anisha and tilts his head. "Oh. Well that is entirely different then what was in my head." He takes a breath, smoothing his long hair back from his face for a moment. "Yes, well I have no issues with a non-aggression alliance and would appreciate the aditional trade. Though our Rivers may not be able to acomadate your marvelous ship." He lifts his shoulders in a shrug. "Of course we can only speak for our land and waterways. The rest of the Oathlands would not be part of that agreement and we would never speak up for them. Instead, if I may give a counter-offer. What Whisper Anisha has said is true. We have an extensive trade network inland. We can take what goods you bring to your new Barony and ship them inland for you. Not for free obviously, but at a very competitive rate."
Athaur checks charm and diplomacy at hard. Athaur is marginally successful.
Lexir has little to offer himself, it seems, and he does not make the attempt, instead moving closer to the other delegates as they speak, imposing himself a little off to the side and just -- watching.
Eshra has been silent listening, her hands folded behind her and occasionally tilting her head to speak softly to her brother. Jackabee's heeling having caused the woman's brows to lift with a slight quirk of a smile as she glances back to Lyra with that sideways grin. Then her attention is back to the talks, a slight scowl given, though for who is not to be said. Then Athaur is gone from her side, pacing.. cursing, though they may not know that. Not unless they speak Ravashari. She does of course and her brother's words have a totally different reaction that most might expect. There from Eshra comes a warm dark chuckle. As Athaur finally gets to the point, her brows arch as if it is news to her, which obviously it is not as her next words will attest. "As well..." head tilting to that the bells sing clear and soft, counterpoint to the warm richness of her speaking voice. "... I would talk to you of ships." there.. there Eshra is in her element. Her tone not meant to charm as it was a voice that was used to command. She steps forward slightly passing her brother. Where Athaur paced, Eshra strolls. ".. as we all know, Longships have their good points as well as difficulties. If they can catch the larger near lands or shallower waters, they are faster, easier to maneuver in their lightness. A large ship has a hard time against a swarm." which many hear may know is the Rivenshari way.. to drag the large down by numbers, like ants on a beetle. "But of course they can survive deep water, this is their weakness to using in battle." she pauses then, turning on a heel to look first to Lyra then to Reveka. "Until now... it's a puzzle we have fixed. We have Longships that will run fast, maneuver quick and survive deep waters. And I am willing to see that you do as well."
Margot steps back from Reveka and nods, "As the voice of Thrax I can offer you the Marque of non agression. That I can do. I will be clear if your people directly attacks one of ours they will be able to retaliate but Port Defiance shall be neutral to both our navies. And we will not hunt you unprevoked." She looks back to Eshra witha bit of surprise and then a broad smile.
When Margot offers her hand to seal the agreement with Reveka, the corsair queen offers a sharp smile. "Perhaps this agreement will give the scattered survivors of Tyde a chance to re-acquaint themselves with each other. Or to become acquainted for the first time, for some. Because no matter where life might take you and what ties you make, there's something to be valued about those bound together by blood and history, to defend the name and honor of their House." She takes the duchess' hand and clasps it firmly in agreement before Margot steps back. "And I would like to believe that in some world where things had gone differently for our House, we might have gotten along quite well."
Everyone present was what people would define as a shrewd negotiator. None of the Compact's people were so quick to give in to the offers on the table without putting their own stipulations on a counter-offer. As Reveka and Margot seemed to have come to terms about her aide, there is a creeping smile on Lyra's expression that threatens to turn into a full blown grin. Captain Jackabee stands up abruptly though and looks angrily between the Compact's delegation and Captain Lyra. He spits on the table he had just pushed away from which makes Lyra blink twice in disbelief. "I'll be sure to tell my mast-"
What he was not banking on was the fact that Lyra was fast. Too fast. She drew the slightly curved blade she favored while dashing forward and nimbly leaping atop the table. She spun once and his head fell from his shoulders. The blood on her sword was flicked off before she sheathed it again and stepped from chair to floor. When she turns to face the Compact's people she is all warm smiles.
"Consider that a gift from me to you all as a show of good faith for our acceptance of your respective offers. The Seven Siren Sisters will meet the enemy in battle, whether we skirmish pirate mercenary or Skal'daja matters little to us." With a polite bow she gestures for them all to be seated so any paperwork that might need to be drawn up can be done so. "Princess Gwenna, Prince Lexir we eagerly await the responses of your respective Houses in accordance with the Letters of Marque and the pact of non-aggression. Lord and Lady Rivenshari, you make a tantalizing offer that we of the Seven Siren Sisters will consider very strongly."
Lyra grabs the Softest Whisper and looks to Reveka with a sullen pout. "Can we keep her too? She was extremely astute and there's something about her. Isn't there?"
Reveka actually laughs at Lyra's enthusiasm. "Most of the Whispers I've known are fond of their house -- and of the more literal whispers they can hear there at the heart of the Compact's power; few would be interested in staying here /permanently/. Still..." She trails off as she considers Anisha, then shakes her head as if putting a thought aside for now. "Well, if this one ever washes up in the tides, I'll bring her back to you." Whatever that might mean.
Then she straightens, considering the Compact representatives once again. "Attractive offers; you've clearly won over the Captain here. I'll bring them to the other corsairs; if they appeal to enough others, I'll call the sails. If not..." Reveka shrugs, her smile ever so slighly sharp once again. "Well, they're free to make their own bargains with you. Either way, you'll receive word soon."
Margot nods to Reveka, her expression softening with grief and sadness. "Reveka, in a different world I could have been you, and you could have been me. Do not think I do not see that." Her hands come together, turning the large men's ring that she wears on her thumb. "We all make the most of the hands the gods deal us." She looks over headless Briggs and then up to Lyra, her smile returning, "I admire ruthless efficency and I like you." There is no squemishness in the duchess, she doesn't even wipe away any blood that may have splattered on her, instead she moves over to take a seat for paper work completion. "Unfortunately you cannot keep Mistress Anisha, I am going to need her very soft whispers and very hard heart to aid in another prong of the up coming conflicts. Though maybe she would consider establishing a Whisper house here if you were very very sweet to her." Margot winks over to Anisha. "Now let us sign some papers and have some drinks. I feel far too sober..."
"Oh, I am quite fond of my House," Anisha agrees, a glint in her eyes at something Reveka says, inclining her head to Lyra. "And I promise you, I will see if I can't make my way back here, eventually." She promises, taking the hand of the pirate captain, raising it, and giving her a kiss on the knuckles. Inclining her head to Margot, she shrugs, and chuckles. "A girl is ever popular. But I look forward to seeing you again. All of you."
"Admiral.." Eshra's voice is neutral as it softly corrects then she smiles and nods. "Captain. Until then." a glance at the headless Jackabee as he bleeds across the planks. "Vinegar.. best way to get it out of wood." winks and looks to her brother. "Gods, I am hungry... I think it's your turn to buy."
Lyra's movements were so quick that Gwenna nearly missed that something was happening, and then it was over. There's a briefly wistful glimmer in her eyes - /maybe/ - as though the image of Lyra making quick work of Captain Jackabee might be called upon during less that pleasant meetings in her future. Or maybe it's a fear. Probably a bit of both. She inclines her head once again. "I will speak with those better versed in the implications, but suspect there will be no objections." She glances to Margot and adds, "I helped with the endeavor for the Whisper Palace in the Northlands and would be happy to assist, if you might want extra help."
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