A child is born
(continued from here: http://sanguineaffliction.com/forum/showthread.php?t=3239)
Unsure of what to say now for fear of making Aislinn cry more, Fallon held her tongue during the short drive to the manor. When they arrived, she waited for Ginger to open the door for Aislinn, and exited behind the girl.
"This is it."
She offered, quietly, and respectfully. Oh how she wished Mai were around, to help greet Aislinn, and possibly even offer up a little comfort to Fallon. Though she really didn't know any of the elders well, whenever she felt slightly off kilter with the clan, it was Mai's face that appeared in Fallon's mind.
Not that it was that surprising, considering the three elders. Morrigan had always been nice to Fallon, and was responsible for Fallon's current position at Heolfor, but their relationship was strictly business. And Sorin...though he no longer frightened Fallon, she still felt a lot less comfortable around him, by comparison to the other two.
No, it was Mai's quiet, and gentle acceptance of Fallon that she would always remember fondly, and now ached for a little.
Guiding Aislinn toward the entry, Fallon smiled when Rupert opened the door and greeted her.
"Good evening Rupert, you're just the man I was hoping to see. This is Aislinn. Aislinn, this is Rupert. Rupert sees, and knows all around here, so if you're ever in need and can't find me, I'm sure he'll be happy to assist you.
Rupert, Aislinn is going to be staying at Heolfor for a short time anyway...until she decides some things about her life. Would you find someone to ready a suite for her, somewhere close to mine and Cyrus' if possible?"
Fallon's head whipped back and forth between the two at her side, until she was sure everything would be handled well, for the immediate future anyway.
When Rupert nodded in understanding, then left for other parts of the manor, Fallon ushered Aislinn inside, and closed the doors behind them.
"Where to first? The gardens? the kitchen? would you like to see where Cyrus and I stay?"
The manor seemed unusually quiet, but it was early still, by vampire standards. Though she was disappointed that there wasn't more going on at the manor, Fallon still had hopes that perhaps Amberelle, or Dawn, or any number of the other clan members might be in attendance to meet Aislinn.
Glancing at Celeste she added, "My twin sister and I were both created by Anantya, but her own personality and abilities have made her feel far more useful to the Orphans than here with the rest of her family. However, I consider her neither idiotic nor misguided in spite of it."
She allowed her sadness to show. She didn't blame Dayle for being where she was, but Ysabel did wish sometimes that they were still a part of Anantya together.
"I'm sure you'll fit in perfectly here," she said to Aislinn. "You and Fallon seem to be very close already. Please don't let my foolishness cause you distress."
She knew the chances of a vampire belonging to a different clan than her creator were slim, but Ysabel opted to keep that concern to herself. If it happened, they could deal with it as it came. She would do no good to the newcomer by casting doubts upon her at this point, when being newly-turned was probably confusing and stressful enough already.
"While I'd rather not see new or old vampires alike joining forces and their gifted resources with another clan Anantya would rather you as a person, Aislinn, feel as if you belong. Should strangly your abilities develope into those of another clan you may not feel as at ease here with us. As an example I'm sure Fallon would have an extremely hard time fiting in with Tacharan." She paused briefly and thought.
"Although if you truly devoted your life to Anantya and our way of life the Elders would doubtfully shut the door on you. As Cel stated everyone of us is Anantya even those like the Orphans who have lost their way. It is my belief that one day they will reclaim their rightful heritage and come back into the fold. Be sure to remember that it is not as easy as I make it sound."
She almost sounded soft for a moment there. What a thought! Reality was that if Fallon's newly unauthorized daughter selected to join up with a different Clan there may be difficult repercussion's for Fallon. The difficult part was Fallon had been left in charge while Morrigan was away. Should Aislinn choose to become Anantya Fallon would most likely be able to get around anything serious. Filling the enemies ranks was certainly looked down on.
Besides it was Chryseis's direct opinnion that no one should want to be in any other clan besides Anantya.
However, her generosity flew out the window at Celeste's condemnations...a 'questionably bred orphan mistake?!' INDEED!
Fallon had to remain mute there, since her guilt rendered her in agreement to a large extent. And funnily, in the long run, Celeste's end result was what Fallon wanted all along. It was just too damned bad that the woman couldn't consider Aislinn, and be a little less obnoxious.
Dropping her hand to her side, Fallon reached for Aislinn's. She hoped the gentle squeeze in the simple act would help...it did for Fallon. If Aislinn had doubts Fallon would do whatever she could to see them turned to certainty. Whatever clan Aislinn wanted to join, Fallon would find out what was required, and see that her fledgling was taken care of. Perhaps she hadn't thought through the turning, but she had done little else but think of it since, and rather than lament the error, she was there to prove to Aislinn that this new life was every bit as good as the old.
"Here, here!!" Fallon blurted out after listening to Ysabel defend her sister. Fallon could see it hurt Ysabel to not have her sister in Anantya, but was glad she was in town, and they were able to be together in spite of their clan differences. She immediately put her free hand to cover her mouth, and blushed a little at the outburst.
Ysabel was turning out to be a downright sweetheart, and Fallon shook her head when the older, and wiser woman confessed to having been foolish. This was a woman Fallon was happy to have Aislinn meet and get to know.
Then it was Chryseis speaking, and Fallon tensed to hear her voice again, expecting more criticism. Instead, happily, even Chryseis seemed to be coming around and showing a more human side. Fallon giggled at the preposterous idea of belonging to Tacharan, but her smile became serious again when Chryseis quickly reverted back to her haughty attitude. At least her additional words were directed toward others, and not Aislinn, and Fallon remained somewhat more at ease.
"You've all been too kind tonight, and have given Aislinn, and myself as well, a lot to think about. I love you all, and couldn't be happier here as an Anantya myself, but I can see now that it isn't a decision to be made lightly. I suppose I'm even a prime example of how someone isn't necessarily the same as their sire...funny but I quite often forget my sire was not Cyrus."
She beamed when she said his name, unable to contain the love she had for him, and so very happy it was his face she saw when she thought back to her own beginnings, and not the face of Panos. But the truth was there...Panos had created her, and to her knowledge wasn't a member of any clan then, or since. She had been lucky...a point she visited daily.
The night had been a long one, and Fallon knew the sun would be coming up in a very few hours. There were still preperations to be made to settle Aislinn in, and wanting to keep the evening as stress free as possible, Fallon didn't want to rush the final hours.
But she also didn't want to just dismiss everyone thanklessly.
"I will get in touch with Morrigan, let her know how helpful you've all been, and give her your suggestions, and ideas. Ultimately it will be up to Aislinn to decide, but we'll make sure the clan is fully aware of her desires as well, and all things are considered."
Fallon finally felt as if things were going to be fine, and again smelled the wonderful flower scents around her. She knew there would still be hurdles, and a long road ahead for her charge, but she really thought the worst was behind them, for the most part. She smiled lovingly at Aislinn, and resisted the urge to take her into a big hug. There would be time for that later, when not so many people would be around to draw improper conclusions, or cast a critical eye on either of them.
He discreetly stroked Belle’s hip when she brought up Dayle. He liked his lover’s twin well enough but well that was a bit of a split wasn’t it. He’d had that issue with his mortal family and it was harder to get over when one was immortal.
Not releasing Belle he faintly shook his head at Fallon. He liked her well enough but she was a bit optimistic, maybe even naive. He wasn’t sure on that last one but the optimistic he would have put money on.
“Just remember ladies, home isn’t always happy. You can walk into a knock down drag out brawl that will be all the worse for being family. But if and when that happens if you can make it past that you wind up all the stronger. Its just not a hell of a lot of fun when it happens.”
Been there, done that. Some of his worst fights had been with his own maker and Ambrose also knew Damaris had her fair share of disagreements with the rest of the Hunt as well as the other two orders.
He felt a bit like he’d been thrown a bone that she’d chat with Morrigan about them but it meant something to Fallon and he wasn’t going to belittle that. Because if he did he might have Belle turn on him too and he’d been gone –far- too long to risk that.
Having said his piece Ambrose turned his mind to politely extricating himself and Belle. It had been a long, very long, drive and he had an agenda. The fact that he couldn’t get his fangs to retract was evidence of that. He was more than a little hungry…
Chryseis wasn't impervious to the level of care Fallon was showing Aislinn. She knew from experience the bond a creator and their child could have, even through tough times. This new one of Fallon's seemed to be handling things well.
"Well, not to cut and run myself, but I must really go back and see if my documents have arrived. Perhaps Rupert has finished fixing up a suite for Aislinn by now. It was nice to meet you Aislinn, and to finally speak with you two Ambrose and Cel. Ladies of The Rose, have a continued good evening."
She nodded her head at them all and turned to leave.
(ooc : Chryseis out pending responses.)
"Thank you for sharing some of the history with us, and for your insight." She directed her thanks at Ysabel too, for it was quite obvious even to her naive mind that she and Ambrose had other things on their agenda tonight.
And if she were to be honest with herself she was starting to feel tired. She noticed the moon again, and realised with a start that this time last night she had been on the beach. It seemed so long ago.
She wondered what her suite would look like, and if Fallon would stay in Heolfor tonight too or return to her own home. She had come to depend on Fallon to be near but she knew she would have to stand on her own two feet soon. It was not fair to burden her.
She found herself growing increasingly tired and was desperately trying to stifle a yawn for she didn't want to be rude.
Was all Fallon managed before the woman was gone. To say she thought the woman was strange was just slightly less emphatic than saying the same about Celeste. It had been Fallon's good luck to have met Mai, Morrigan, Amberelle, Dawn, Ysabel, and a couple other less stern Anantya woman before she met up with these other two. Had things run in a different order, she might have questioned Cyrus further before accepting her fate to become Anantya herself.
Whether or not Aislinn was growing tired, Fallon was. Apparently turning someone had an effect like sugar...there was a strong, definite high initially, and then after a certain length of time the bottom seemed to just drop out of the world. Fallon figured she could probably just fall to the ground now and curl up quite comfortably.
But that wouldn't do. She had drawn this small group together to bring Aislinn into the fold, and she also had to see Aislinn herself settled. It was her luck that Chryseis chose that moment to depart. Eying Ysabel and Ambrose, Fallon sensed they would be happy to take their leave as well. Celeste seemed to be still caught up in her music, which was the only explanation to Fallon as to why the other woman had suddenly become quiet again.
But it was the little tremor in Aislinn that jolted Fallon into seeing how tired her charge was becoming.
"You all have been really wonderful, and again, I can't tell you how much you've helped. I think my ward is now in need of sleep...the sun will be chasing that moon shortly, and none of us want to be out here when he crests."
Walking up to Ambrose, Fallon kissed him lightly on the cheek, and then repeated the same to Ysabel.
"I hope we see you around Heolfor more...I like you both tremendously."
She spoke out loud, but kept her tone low. She wasn't ashamed of her feelings, but since she didn't share the same with Celeste, it would serve no purpose if the other woman overheard.
Turning she lightly touched Celeste's hand, and smiled, still unsure if the other woman was hearing her, or music. It was manners that dictated Fallon make an effort to thank this woman as well.
"And thank you Celeste. I'm sure Aislinn is all the better for everything she's learned here tonight."
Stepping back to Aislinn's side, Fallon returned her arm to caress Aislinn's shoulder, while gazing down at the sweet face next to her.
"What say you, little one, want to go see about that suite now?"
"I hope you settle in well, Aislinn," she said. "If either of you have questions, I'm sure Rupert can direct you to myself or Ambrose. However, we've been living off-property for a while."
Briefly, Ysabel described to Fallon how to reach her house, which bordered Heolfor's property and was very easily found.
"Should you want to drop in for a visit, at any time, please feel free to do so. There is no need to call ahead or wait for an invitation; my clan-sisters are always welcome."
She dropped a little curtsey out of habit and stepped back to allow Ambrose to take his leave as well, her eyes watching him warmly the entire time.
((ooc: Ysabel out with Ambrose pending responses))
It was with no small amount of relief that everyone seemed to be making their goodbyes. Celeste smirked ever so slightly as she watched one after another beg off and head their own ways. It wasn't the first time she'd shown up and cleared a room. So to speak.
Feeling somehow obligated to offer the girl some kind of final welcome and all the accompanying bullshit, the Nightswoman finally managed to unlock her jaw and gave her a smile, albiet a somewhat cool one.
If you are staying here at Heolfor perhaps some night I could assist you with any questions, or I could show you some self defense moves if you need them. Never hurts to be prepared. It wouldn't do to have an Anantya out and about and unable to defend themselves, even a fledgeling. Not that she was about to start taking in strays or any of that crap. I live just across from the dojo entrance. The downstairs suite. Name your weapon or fighting style.. I'm pretty sure I know it. A somewhat proud smirk accompanied the statement.
Turning those icy blue eyes of hers to Ysabel and her obvious suitor, she gave them both a thin smile. "Oh what was his name.. oh wait.. something like Amby's wasn't it? Amber? No.. umm, oh yeah Ambrose. How could I forget something unusual like that?" she wondered. Ehh, was probably because it didn't suit the gruff seeming man.
Ysabell... Ambrose.. she nodded curtly to each as she said their name then turned to head further down the path. At least she was polite enough to wait to put her earbud back in until they had all exchanged niceties and moved on.
((Cel out pending responses if any)
He nodded at Chryseis as she left. Interesting woman. He’d like to talk to her sometime Ambrose realized with a start.
Fallon, however, surprised him with the little kiss to the cheek.
“Damned it little girl. Any time, that goes for both of you but you make me blush and I have to shoot you.”
He said with a nearly apologetic shrug more than content to let Belle give directions. Hmmm if they were going to have company, she might want to warn the waif. The girl still watched him like he might bite her or something. And of course, that was Belle’s job.
With obvious suspicion, he watched Celeste take her leave. No point in hiding his feelings, she probably knew. Damned sneaky Night. Damned he would have fucked up royal in that order. He nodded to her as she left as well.
Party over he half yanked Belle off her feet and whispered in her ear.
“I’ve still got rooms here, not much left in them but…”
Getting what was enough of a positive response from her, he made their farewells. Damned he was no good at waiting.
“Good night ladies. I’m sure we’ll see you again.”
((OOC… Ambrose and Ysabel out.))
She watched them go with a wistful smile upon her face. One day she wanted to know such undying love. She was relieved when the slightly scary Celeste stalked off. Self defence might be fun, even vital to learn, but she had the feeling she'd be eaten alive by her. With everyone else going their separate ways, she and Fallon seemed to be left alone. She turned to her friend, and smiled sleepily. Her mind still wanted to explore, to learn but her body was finally overriding and she needed some sleep.
"Shall we go in?"
Starting back on the path to the manor, Fallon wondered what Aislinn thought about all she had learned and those she had met tonight. She didn't expect a lot of conversation, since they were both tired, but she had to ask on the off chance there were questions that needed addressing before the next night arrived.
"I know you've been given a great deal to think about tonight, and I'd hope you'll give everything considerable thought. It's an overwhelming position to be in, I remember, and will again remind you this isn't anything you need to go through alone. If there is ever anything I can do to help...however that might be...you must promise me to let me. I don't want to smother you, or make you feel uncomfortable, but I need to know you know you can count on me."
She followed Aislinn's gaze as she walked, alternating between the girl and the path. This was something Fallon knew she would need time to adjust to as well, but she no longer looked upon the task as something she owed Aislinn, but rather something she just really wanted to do.
"No one should go through life alone, and more importantly, no one should be afraid of what tomorrow will bring."
Catching a yawn of her own now, behind her palm, Fallon grinned sheepishly. She hoped Rupert had been busy during the walk and that Aislinn wouldn't need to wait for her suite.
Entering the manor, Fallon stopped by her office and called Rupert. Luckily for the two women, the suite across from Cyrus' had been empty, and was now ready for its new inhabitant. The key was lying on Fallon's desk, and she picked it up and handed it to Aislinn. Thanking the man she was growing to know and like more every day, she then directed Aislinn down the hallways until they reached Cyrus' own door.
"This is where I'm staying, and that is your suite."
Crossing the hall and stopping at the door, Fallon motioned to the handle.
"All yours." She said softly, hoping Aislinn was feeling relaxed enough to get a good night's sleep. And then, as if a light bulb clicked on over her head, Fallon held up one finger.
"Hang on two secs."
Retracing her steps to her own door, Fallon dashed inside, and returned in less than a minute.
"Here...you should drink some now, and then keep it handy for when you wake up later. I'm not sure how your suite is set up, but if there isn't a small refrigerator in there, we'll get one for you tomorrow. And if you find you need ANYTHING before you can collect all your things from the hotel, you can either call Rupert, or me, and we'll see what we can do."
Verbally Fallon gave Aislinn her suite extension, and that of Rupert's. Tomorrow she would see that Aislinn got a full list of numbers she might need for the manor.
Tapping her fingertip against her lip, Fallon tried to think if there was anything else Aislinn might need right now, but came up empty.
"Will you be ok, or did you want me to come in with you?"
She did NOT want to smother the girl, and she did not want her to feel abandoned. There were just so many things to think about when the welfare of someone else was in your pocket.
She memorised the numbers she was given, then looked at Fallon at her question. Mixed feelings swept through her. Part of her wanted Fallon to never leave her, to stay by her side always. But the more realistic side of her knew that was silly, that Fallon had her own life.
"I'll be fine, I'm just tired." She smiled, hoping that Fallon would not worry too much about her and would be able to sleep. She stood in the doorway of her suite, glad that Fallons room was close by, just in case.
"I'm sure you'll be fine. Among all your other fine attributes, you've proved yourself to be amazingly strong and resilient. I admire that in you little one..."
Taking yet another step back, and putting more distance between them, Fallon patted the bottle.
"Don't forget...call if you need anything. You might need to let the phone ring a bit...sometimes I can sleep a bit heavily, but I'll eventually hear it."
Slowly walking back across the hall, Fallon turned, and gave Aislinn as small wave.
"Goodnight then, sweeting."
And then she was gone.
Aislinn watched her disappear into her room, then turned and entered her own room, closing the door behind her, then leaned against it. Now she was alone, she did not have to guard her emotions now. After a moment she walked to the window and peered out over the gardens and to the slowly lightening sky beyond. She was struck again by the fact that she could never watch another sunrise, and she almost savagely closed the curtains against the coming of dawn. Suddenly tears formed in her eyes and she threw herself onto the bed and cried herself to sleep.