The Skull of Count Corvini
June 2, 2021, 8 p.m.
Arx - Ward of the Compact - Shrine of the Queen of Endings
Comments and Log
The shrine tonight has been set appropriate to the mood of the gathering meant to be. In that it hasn't changed much at all, albeit with less bright lights, leaving much of the place in somber shadow. Having arrived beforehand, and settled Caprice into somewhere to sit, Felix moves with a box carefully carried in both hands towards the altar itself, arranging it just so, for the coming revelation and emplacement of the skull to come. Waiting up at the front, greeting those who come with an amiable smile and lifted hand, he maintains his silence until at least the majority of those who are coming have found their places.
"Thank you all for coming, to say a final farewell for Count Corvini. A man who, through his ventures and actions, graced many of us here. Be it wealth, knowledge, or both, Count Giulio provided well beyond his House. Please join me in a silent prayer to the Queen of Endings. A welcome back to Her, and preparation for another turn on the Wheel." With this, Felix bows his head for almost a minute, giving everyone else a chance to finish their own, before he straightens.
"As with many, for the Count we have prepared a skull for him. We do this to remember who he was, and what all he accomplished. And, for those who come after, to learn from his deeds as well." with that, Felix gently opens the box, drawing out a skull fashioned from cupridium. Details noticable at a distance are that it appears hollow, with writing seen through the open eyes, and a cupridium and feather quill that is angled into it from outside. Strangely, an addition of a small leather cord and padded mallet goes with the skull, as Felix arranges it neatly upon the altar itself. A slight bow to the crowd, and then stepping to one side to make way for Ripley.
Sorrel slipped in before things began, and now she lingers in silence, watching, observing. She inspects the skull that Felix has presented with interest, considering its style and manufacture.
Felix drops a cupridium skull for Count Giulio Corvini.
Ripley has been there, shuffling feet off to the side and wringing hands. It's not often he's present for the actual laying in of a skull. His hair is some semblance of madness tamed and beard has had a comb run through it at least and he's neat and tidy as the jeweler steps forward once the moment of silence is offered and past.
A hand comes up to scratch at that tiny bald patch on the left side of his jaw and then he just shoves his hands into pockets of the light cotton jacket he's wearing.
"Never met the man, not that I remember. But that doesn't mean that he didn't affect me. The Queen wants me to make skulls for people. She gets right up in my head and just lays it out. Well no, not really lays it out but like, she tells me." Ripley looks to the skull in question. "She wrote, scratch scratch scratch, just a quill inside my skull -" conveniently, there's a quill, that sits inside this skull! "and I don't think that I sneezed ever so much till she told me to make it. And books. Books they got this smell to em and it's all I could smell. Anyways." He scratches behind an ear now, some part of him always being scratched and his shoulders turned in and slouching.
"She wanted it done for him. Not just the one who uhh commissioned it, I mean... She. And I don't say no. But from all I was told, the Count was a good man, devoted to vellichor and sharing knowledge and his sacrifice was a... well I guess calling it pretty isn't right but, he's, he'll be missed but there's the skull, so that people can come here and think of him, with Her and maybe he'll be back out before we know it and everyone will get to enjoy his company in another body."
Ripley, the awkward jeweler. He shuffles his feet again and then leans over, rapping his knuckles on the skull. "Blessed Felix and I, we did a good job. I think." And then he's back off to the side, stuffing hands in pockets again, turning it over to the next person.
Caprice remains among the unobtrusive observers, bearing witness to the ceremony, honoring a life that, given her lingering on the sidelines, she wasn't personally familiar with. Her focus moves from the Archlector to the skull as it's revealed, to Ripley when he offers his own words, and back to the commemorative sculpture once more.
Titus is a witness standing off towards the side, an observer to the memorial of the fallen count.
Jaenelle is there off to the side in her official capacity as a member of the Harlequins as well as the leader of the fealty the Count was part of. She does not speak as she listens to Felix open the ceremony, a soft smile touching her features as he speaks. When Ripley approaches, that soft look does not shift, as she hears his thought process or where the inspiration arrives while he was making the skull to honor the late Count.
Vitalis, the late Count's cousin, is on hand for the presentation of Giulio's skull at the Shrine. He bows his head as the artisans who made the Skull speak on it. He listens, and offers as they fall silent. He step forward, guiding off of someone near, "Thank you Blessed Felix, Messere Thornburn, for your tribute." He pauses, and continues, "Giulio was a remarkable person. And a good one. He gave of himself in a way I don't think I'll ever truly understand. But I'm better for it. And others are, too. His teachings are his legacy, and his devotion to sharing knowledge." He bows his head again, lapsing into silence.
Avalanche, a fluffy mountain pup, Jasper, an unflappable scoundrel, 2 Redrain Guards, Toad, a flippity-floppity smoosh-face of a Keaton Hound arrive, following Deva.
Giving everyone opportunity to regard the skull, Felix waits even a minute longer than that before he steps forward once more. A nod of somber acknowledgement for Vitalis, and making sure that anyone who wants has one last chance for now. "It was a pleasure, Lord Vitalis - the Count was a friend for whom I have a great deal of respect. And it was an honor for this request to come to me and my shop, and to work with Master Ripley." with a nod towards the man in question. Gently closing the box that he had used for transport, and setting it carefully down to the side for now, to free the altar space once more, in preparation of the shifting of the skull into the wall itself, a niche already prepared and waiting.
Drifting forward, Sorrel takes a long moment to study the skull intently. "It's quite a lot like what I'd envisioned. When I first came to the Shrine to mourn, and Tanith Grayhope said she'd organize things to put together this piece of artwork that is a beautiful remembrance of the Count. Cupridium, I said. Rings like a bell. A quill. He wanted to make a cupridium pen for himself. And there it is. There it is. And all the writing. It's perfect," she says softly, tears rising to her eyes unbidden. She glances around, looking between Ripley and Felix. "Is someone going to sound it?"
Sometimes time is elusive. Deva arrives well into the ceremony, with an apologetic expression alllll over her face. There is an adorable hound at her heels, and she scoots in further along the edges of the shrine to get a better view in hopefully as unintrusive a manner as possible.
Titus is overheard praising Giulio(rip): While life is taken from a life that's given, no one can take away a lesson learned. Rest well, Count Giulio Corvini, may your house seek difficult questions and be rewarded with challenging answers.
"Can you?" Caprice floats the question to Sorrel, gently. "Ah.. assuming it's not considered an official duty," she amends, "it seems fitting that you be part of this if you were there for the beginning as well."
Has anyone run the skull? Ripley looks to Felix and then the skull. "I mean, in the making of it, we did, to make sure that it would uhh, work but i suppose, yeah... go ahead. Before I put it into the wall." Ripley offers to Sorrel.
"I have, aye, to ensure that the tone and pitch were suitable, but I would say that you should certainly be the one to do so here." Felix agrees, with a motion to the skull in question, stepping back once more, both to let Sorrel closer, and for Ripley to continue once she has done so.
Sorrel nods to Caprice, and then to Ripley, and then to Felix, offering each a smile in turn, and then she steps forward to take up the little hammer and strike the skull so that it rings out like a bell, resonating with its ideally tuned note. Listening to it for a moment, she lifts her voice to match it in harmony, a higher note that works beautifully with the resonance of the skull.
Caprice's hum is a soft note of appreciation, not an attempt to create a chorus. She considers the skull with renewed interest, before her attention shifts to the memorial wall.
Vitalis lifts his voice to join the others' doubling the note, he's no performer, but he has a serviceable voice.
Ripley smiles when the note rings out from the skull, a little frown as people start to lend their voice to the note and carry it on when it ends. But he remains quiet, waiting to do his duty.
Ripley takes a cupridium skull for Count Giulio Corvini.
And when the note carriers eventually stop, and it looks like no one else will be stepping forward to speak or otherwise, Ripley moves forward and takes up the skull. He carries it like it's a precious thing, dear to him and starts to move toward the spot on the memorial wall made for the piece. There, it slides in, Giulio Corvini resting in place with others that have come and gone. Ripley adjusts it once, then adjusts it again till he's satisfied with how it's sitting and then steps back to look at Felix.
Felix gives Ripley a nod, stepping back out and turning to those gathered. "Thank you, again, everyone, for coming - that we might give, together, one last moment for the Count. That some have to give all has ever been the way of those who have ensured we who follow have the ability to do so. I do not doubt he would choose the same again, knowing the outcome. We give our thanks, to the Queen of Endings, who is also She who starts our new Beginnings, that this epilogue give closure to a chapter of life - to make way for a new one to be introduced." this last given, Felix steps aside once more, to pick up the box he carried the skull in with, so he can take it with him in departure.
Avalanche, a fluffy mountain pup, Jasper, an unflappable scoundrel, 2 Redrain Guards, Toad, a flippity-floppity smoosh-face of a Keaton Hound leave, following Deva.
Caprice's head dips slightly, a final prayer or perhaps a last moment of respectful silence given for the wall's newest addition. With the ceremony seemingly at a close, she glances over those gathered, lips pressed into a small and faintly sympathetic smile.
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