Umbra 45, 228: A Royal Acquaintance

A Royal Acquaintance
Summary: Princess Roslin Kilgour finally meets the Grand Duke of Rustles Island.
OOC Date: 18/11/2013 (OOC)
Related: Guests Arrive for the Winter
Roslin Emerit Mantilo 
Game Room, Darfield Castle
Room description to be added later
45th of Umbra, in the year 228

Although there is a Grand Duke to be had somewhere in the palace, Roslin Kilgour has not yet seen the man. She in fact is entirely unknown to him, as she did not see him even upon her first visit. Word has been sent welcoming the man, naturally, from her own desk but beyond that there has been no contact.

She seems little concerned with that now in the Salon, sitting as she is in a brown-and-ochre dress with a high neck and long, dagged sleeves. The sleeves, back, and overskirt are embroidered with leaves and vines in the brown, while the bodice and underskirt are of a matching brow and decorated with little gold and pearl beads. She wears a tiara of gold on her crown of red braids, and otherwise looks quite as a Princess should - straight-backed, head high, every hair just in it's place.

She is embroidering, listening to an older woman of some stature talk on about this or that. Kilgour guards stand at the doors watching, and sitting against the wall with her own embroidery is a Kilgour maid. Roslin doesn't seem terribly engaged, but she is politely interested, making a point about this or that or nodding in agreement to the woman.

There is a slight commotion at the door, and a maiden enters, 16 summers old and with long fiery red curls framing her pale and comely face. The hair, of course, falls openly about her shoulders as usual when Princess Emerit rushes into the room, her green eyes quickly glimpsing the other princess already seated in there. The dress the Moniwid wears is not of a sombre darker colour she usually prefers, but of a lighter colour, reminiscent of a peach, embroidered with tiny butterflies in dark green, a dress that becomes a princess indeed in its elegance and expensive fabric, and it fits the Mist of the Island surprisingly well.

“Ah, what a coincidence,“ Emerit remarks, looking a touch surprised, but offers the deep curtsey to Roslin nonetheless, her demeanour is sparkling today, as would probably be expected, as yesterday was when the high guest arrived, her brother, the Grand Duke himself, whom he has not seen for a long time.

Following Emerit are her Kilgour chaperone and her handmaiden Yulanda – and two Moniwid guards, as the former guards of House Kilgour have obviously been returned to their hosts, along with words of gratitude for providing the protection as long as it was needed.

Roslin turns her head as the Princess enters, and the redhead rises to bow herself respectfully in the direction of the other Royal. “Princess,” Roslin says in greeting. “How lovely it is to see you - the day is quite beautiful and so are you if I might add. I think perhaps the autumn suites you.” She turns then, nodding to the elder woman who has also ridden and bowed herself. “Do excuse me, Countess, I must speak with my friend from Rustles Island.” The woman bows respectfully and understandingly and moves away, allowing Roslin to gesture to a seat across from her own, large and cozy, by the fire. “Do sit, my dear, I implore you. Would you take some wine with me? I shall try not to keep you terribly long - I’m sure you are quite busy seeing your brother. I trust he is well, and the journey was pleasant?”

“The autumn suits me?”, echoes Emerit, and her chuckle ripples melodiously through the gameroom. “I thank you for the compliment. But as I see you prefer the brownish and ochre tones already, no… I did not have autumn in mind when in fact your tailor friend convinced me to try out some lighter coloured fabrics. Just a change of… style perhaps. An experiment.” She smiles at the Kilgour princess and accepts the offered seat as soon as it becomes vacant, even though her moss green eyes follow the noble lady she has just snatched the seat from. “Oh dear, your highness. This countess will be wroth at me for depriving her of your company. But I thank you anyway. I haven't seen you in a while, and am glad to come across you today. Some wine… thank you, I would really like a glass. And yes, my brother,” she pauses, her mien radiating as she casts Roslin a glance. “He is here, and he is most eager to make your acquaintance, your highness…”

Roslin motions for a servant, who goes back toward the servants’ door to fetch wine. The Princess, in the meantime, has set aside her embroidery. “Oh, it’s quite alright,” Roslin says in regards to the Duchess. “Her mother was friends with my grandmother, so we Kilgours entertain her as best as we may but to be truthful … well I am happy for a bit of faster conversation.” She smirks a little and sits back in her seat, nodding to Emerit. “As I am eager to make his.”

The door of the Salon opens widely and a man steps inside. A man, who is dressed in simple leather clothes, and has no symbols for whom he belongs. After him, the Grand Duke himself enters the Salon. Catching the sight of two Princesses, Mantilo sighs a bit and motions for his companion to leave. The man and two Moniwids’ guards get out of the room. Then a friendly smile appears in his miens.

He stands, tall and lean, with the confident bearing of a man who knows what he wants and how to gain it. His face is tanned, like that of a sailor or hunter, with a frame of curly brown hair that falls just below his collar in the back, and a shadow of stubble over his cheeks and chin. His warm brown eyes rests on his half-sister, while he is pacing closer near the girls.

He is wearing loose shirt with a deep collar that is open to allow a glimpse of his broad, muscular chest and glinting golden pendant, and sleeves that billow like the sails of a great ship. He wears pants of a sturdy cloth in color to match the vest. To protect his lower legs and feet, he wears heavy riding boots with hard soles and shanks that rise almost to his knees. Around his waist is a stout belt and a large leather pouch in which he carries his jingling coins.

Finally, when he is near the ladies, a man offers more wider smile, “My sunshine,” he nods at Emerit and then turns to Roslin, “And this should be your friend Princess Roslin Kilgour, I believe?” If the girl will let, the Grand Duke will take her hand and very gently, fractionally, he will touch the girl’s skin between knuckles with his lips. Then he will lean back, “A pleasure to meet you, Your Highness.”

Emerit leans back in her seat, one of her fingers twirling one of her red curls until it becomes quite entangled, while she studies Roslin with attentive and friendly eyes. “I can already announce that my brother intends to stay over the winter – which you already may be aware of. And more of our family will follow. My other brother, the Admiral Gilld. And Draventa and Benigne, of course. The Grand Duke would be delighted to establish bonds to the nobility and royalty of Mobrin, through marriage. And he even…”

Emerit's voice trails off as she notices the man in leather clothes come in from the Upper Hall, and then the man himself enters, and she covers her mouth to suppress a light giggle. “Brother! You would not guess who we were just talking about. Her moss green gaze flits from Mantilo's face to Roslin's hand as it receives the 'treatment' and she leans back once again, folding her hands before her in her lap as she observes the acquaintance being made.

When the man approaches, it is hard to not know who he is. When he takes her hand, Roslin rises and allows him to do so, bobbing respectfully to the man as he does so, and rising when he has released her. She moves her own eyes up to his face and smiles in a warm, cordial manner.

“Your highness,” she says, her words gentle and smooth as she moves her hands to fold in front of her. “It is an honor and a pleasure to make your acquaintance. I am so very happy to be able to welcome you to Stormvale, and am delighted to hear that you intend to winter with us. I do very much hope that we shall become as warm of friends as the dear Princess Emerit and I have become, if she does not mind me saying.” Roslin gestures to a seat, inviting the Grand Duke to sit, and then she herself moves to settle in as well. The servant returns with two cups and a pitcher of wine, but now there is a third man. So she pours for the ladies, offers, and goes to find another cup, leaving the Duke momentarily wineless.

Roslin goes on, “She has spoken so often of your home and of your own self, your highness, that I am sure your presence brings a touch of warmth from that far-off place so that even someone unfamiliar with Rustles and with yourself as I am surely feels it.”

The man listens for the young princess Roslin, nodding and smiling at her, “I should say thank you, Your Highness for becoming a friend of my dear Emerit, when she was in need of the friend the most.”

Then the Roslin takes a seat, the man does the same, mannerly clasping his hands on abdomen. “I am eager to spend winter here. I heard you have a real winter. With soo much snow! What I can’t say about our island, young princess,” grins Mantilo and starts running with his fingers around pendant on his broad chest.

Extending one of her long-sleeved arms towards the servant to accept the wine, Princess Emerit still is quite intrigued by the encounter unfolding before her eyes. She takes a first sip and tilts her head a touch to the side when she decides to finally disturb the tete-a-tete with a remark of hers. “Hmm, too bad you have to wait, your Royal Highness. This is a fine vintage indeed.” A wink in her half-brother's direction, although her gaze lingers for a little longer on him to assess his reaction to her friend. “And dear Princess Roslin, I am sure there might be more growing from this acquaintance than just friendship. Although. Friendship is always a good basis, is it not?” Her eyelids flutter and she smirks with a certain teasing innocence.

At Mantilo's remark about the winters on Rustles Island, the Moniwid Princess rolls her eyes a bit, as her gaze flits from her brother to Roslin. Especially, when he starts to fumble with the pendant on his chest She knows the antics of her brother all too well it seems, they have become her old friends. And to witness them again makes a delighted smile appear on her face.

“If you are interested in snow, your highness, I promise you that you shall have your fill. Or at least of the cold. You may have to ride inland a bit for some of the real snows, as the sea air keeps them away here. It is far too damp, even in the winter. I imagine there is not much snow in Rustles?” The Princess asks, accepting her own wine and sipping it, before allowing the cup to settle between her hands. She turns her eyes then to the Moniwid Princess and nods happily at words. “Indeed - I should hope a great deal more than a friendship.” She looks back to Mantilo. “It is my understanding, your highness, that you have done much to aid our sailors at sea during their time of need. For that, you have my personal gratitude. Now that you are here I do indeed believe our countries shall untie beyond simple friendship into a true and mutually beneficial alliance. And then, with such forces as ours combined, the lands and the seas of Daeren shall be free of oppressive forces that currently roam. Such righteousness is indeed above and beyond simple friendship.”

Mantilo glances at the Emerit, when she is speaking about the wine, “Oooh… I hope you do not taste it too much here, huh?” He giggles and concentrates on his pendant again, though dark brown gaze is thoughtfully listening for the Princess Roslin.

“I am happy to get a chance to become friends with Your Father. I am happy to see Rustless Island and Your Kingdom, little princess, to walk together, step by step. My ships will be Your Father’s ships and I will do everything to help, you can be sure of that.”

However, likely, the man still is not soo much intrigued by the political things. A few days of holiday from all that - would be perfect. Just until the King will come back. So, he gets back near the snow, “Oooh… What you have here, because of the sea…Our whole island is like that on winter.”

Emerit leans a bit forward in her seat, and her elbows come to rest upon her knees, while she listens to Roslin’s well articulated reply to the Grand Duke. A glance is shot towards the Kilgour Princess, and a touch of admiration can be found within. Yet, the Moniwid chooses to remain silent, as she sits there, toying with the cup of wine that is still half full, while the smile remains on her young freckled features.

Then, her brother makes that remark about the wine and she chuckles. Slowly that cup is raised again, almost impertinent in its deliberate slowness, while Emerit’s gaze rests on her brother. She takes another sip. “Not more than at home,” she replies with a wink. “But you should taste it, it is most delicious.”

IT is a good thing, then, that the wine comes when it does - a large, fresh cup of it for the Duke. Freshly poured, obviously.

“Oh?” Roslin asks politely, sipping her own wine again. “Is Rustles cold in the winter? I had been under the impression that it was fairly tropical, like so much of Jadda, and that even in the winter months they did not suffer the cold much.” She turns her attention fully back to the Grand Duke and bows her head to him, respectfully. “I am so happy to hear it, that our countries are so united against the Laniveer and their false war against us to hold the crown that is not rightfully theirs. It pleases me so much that you shall be our partner in Justice on this matter.”

The Grand Duke takes the offered goblet. He whirls it in the hand a few moments, before smelling the wine and then just moistening his upper lip with it. He licks these few drops of wine and leans back in his seat pondering. Then he takes a slightly bigger sip. A few more moments of silent and his low voice speaks again, “Indeed. That is a really good wine. If you can get something similar in the tavern, then I am afraid, I might start drinking more than I want,” he laughs lively, placing the goblet on the table.

“By all means! By all means we will find justice, as my family would say,” nods Mantilo and smiles at the young princess, tasting some more wine.

Matchmaking is a science of its own, with its own particular set of rules, one of them being to leave the pair alone at some point – at least sort of, and free them of the closely observing glances of relatives. In this case there is the man in leather garb and Roslin's retinue, who will stay behind when Emerit rises, emptying her cup before she sets it down onto the table. “Pray excuse me, I fear there is a task that needs to be seen to, I still need to pick a dress for the dinner in two days. Princess Roslin. Brother. It has been a pleasure. And pray do not feel obliged to leave as well, no… continue your conversation. About alliances and such.” A deep curtsey and the Mist of the Island rushes off, her maid and chaperone in tow.

Roslin nods her head as the other royal takes her leave, smiling respectfully. Once gone, Roslin is able to turn her attention back to the Grand Duke. “Your sister is a great credit to your house, your highness. You must be very proud of her. For my own part I have been exceedingly impressed with her intellect and good breeding. I shall be most excited to make the acquaintance of other members of your house as they arrive. I hope they come soon, though. Winter is no time to be out at sea.” She pauses a moment before continuing. “I am sorry Fauther was not here himself to greet you, however he has been away for some weeks now and I am sure he shall be delighted to see you when he returns. Until then, we children of his shall have to substitute for his absence as much as we can.”

Mantilo listens for the girl intently, sipping his wine. When she is speaking about Emerit, a really proud grin flashes in his features and the man explain, “She is extraordinary. She is my sunshine every day and you are right. I am really proud about her. That is why our Grand Duchy decided to have the youngest ambassador in history, I guess…”

He takes another sip of wine, when all this courtesy continues. Wonderful words and promises from one side, and he has to answer, and that repeats again and again! Man’s fingers start dancing on his knee, but he still is trying to remain polite and smile warmly, as this tense, disciplined princess wants. That is why the Grand Duke nods his head and very calmly, softly answers, “They should be here soon. Well, my sisters. They are eager to finally stand on the continent. Though, I can’t make promises about our High Admiral, my younger brother. He is slightly crazy about danger in the seas. The worse weather - the more pleasure he gets. So, I am not sure, when he will pay a visit. But I am sure, he would love to meet new people too. I guess, especially to talk with lord Eoin. I was told he is your Kingdom’s admiral. I believe, they would have lots of things to discuss. And… I must admit, even if I am a ruler of the island, I prefer swords. After all, we are grown like that. The first born son become The Grand Duke, and the second always becomes High Admiral. This is very important tradition in our lands. The second son almost since his birth spends days on the ship…”

Another sip is taken and Mantilo shrugs a bit, still smiling, “But enough about me and my island. I must say, I am exceedingly impressed with your intellect and good breeding, princess. Have you always been so interested in politics or you have other hobbies too, if I may ask, forgetting all the formalities…” He chuckles, curiously glancing at the girl.

“I look forward to receiving them, and your brother too - even if he does not decide to settle in a port until after the worst of the winter weather has passed.” She smiles again, a warm smile, that, and sips her wine. “Lord Eoin Haravean is our High Admiral, and an exceedingly apt one at that. I most highly recommend him for conversation if you find the time. No doubt he is eager to speak with you.”

Under the light of the praise the woman smiles and blushes just a tint - no wonder her brother is always telling her to wear more powder. “You are too kind, your highness. I would not say I have an interest in politics. I am simply aware of the world around me, and as a Royal Princess of Mobrin the world around me is politics. As for my other hobbies, I do have quite a few. I like to think of myself as an avid reader, a student of languages, and I am currently working with some other ladies of court and the Temple to build a garden and shrine within the castle walls. Construction will likely not begin until after the winter has passed, but there is much planning to do. And living among foreign leaders such as yourself has always proved most interesting and diverting. Please, your highness, if you find anything about your stay here that does not suite you, do not hesitate to let me know. I shalln’t take offense for any of your concerns - as a Royal Princess it is my pleasure and duty to see that you have everything you could desire and no complaints at all in your time here.”

Mantilo’s eyebrow jumps up at the offer, at the offer to bring this little princess his own opinion about the stay. The man grins a bit mischievously and leans closer near the Princess, just to whisper in her ear, as he would be preparing to tell a huge secret. His lips opens and he says, “I have one remark… If you could take care of that, I would be the most happy Grand Duke in the world. Could you, somehow, do something, that there would be less formalities and more just friendly and interesting conversations, entertainments?” The Grand Duke laughs and leans back in his seat.

“Everywhere, where I go, people are just doing all that courtesy, and you always have to be so tense. How you can find friends, when everyone around are hiding their faces under the gallantry, huh?” He giggles again and takes another sip of wine, “Don’t you think, that I have no serious intentions. I know, there is a war, there are many important discussion to participate, but… I like, when it is happening on the right time and in the right places, if you understand what I mean,” the man grins widely, whirling his pendant.

Roslin smiles as she leans back, nodding easily. “I suppose I do, your highness. How is one to understand a new country if all he does is work? You must experience Mobrin to know the people, the soldiers, and the leaders. It is an admirable concept. Though I imagine I cannot make everyone more … informal? I am told that there will be a feast tonight or on the morrow. Feasts and wine often make the most formal occasions more relaxed.” She sips her own wine again and sets it aside for now. “Though I do hope you shall forgive us a little, Your Grace. We are a people who cannot help but stand on ceremony when you are near. It is the only way we have to show respect and to try to impress you. And we all do so hope that you are as impressed with us as we are impressed with you.”

Mantilo sighs, shaking his head, “I am always more impressed with relaxed people, who can be a good allies, standing beside without formalities. Then, you feel friendship, not the duty. I do hope, that through all that winter, I will find friends in here. For now… Your Highness, if I wouldn’t be impressed with your lands, I wouldn’t be here. I would stand there, near Laniveer side. But my advisors and I were observing events from long long time ago. Even before I came here the first time, I was already impressed by your lands. That is why I came back. By all means! If Moniwids want something, they get it by all means. We wanted a friendship and alliance. We wanted to share knowledge, resources and… actually, and blood.” He lowers his head a bit, “You see, when you live in an island… Our all noble families are somehow related. We all are cousins, aunts, uncles… So, there is nothing more important for us than possible marriages with foreigners. If we fail, our…Well, that is not so good!” Grins Mantilo again, turning his curious glance back at Roslin. “But as I saw, your Father and Mother was not so impressed with my Rustles Island. That is why I had to leave and come back. You needed proves, before being impressed with us,” sip of wine is taken.

“Were they not impressed? That is strange - for I am their own blood and family and that is not the impression I received from them. But I am sure when Father returns, he shall put the matter to rest.” The maid is standing now, leaning over to whisper to Roslin. The woman nods. “Forgive me, your highness, but I must prepare for the evening. I am sure I shall see you there tonight, but I must dress for it.” She moves to rise, bowing her head low and respectful to the man as she does. “I shall happily look forward to our further conversations over the coming winter.”

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