A Black and Silver Invitation
A black carpet runner with silver embroidered borders runs the entire length of the path from the entrance of the cemetery straight to Kensington Hall. Your way is lit at regular intervals by blue lanterns hanging from iron posts.
Once over the hill you can see the large mausoleum; its ancient bulk wreathed in clinging vines that appear black against the stark white marble. Fog creeps slowly along the ground making the building appear as though it had only recently emerged from another realm.
The doorway is draped in spider webs that appear so natural to the place that they may not have been an added decoration at all. A flickering light comes from within, its atmosphere not all that welcoming.
Once inside you can see torches lining the walls; their dancing light creating long shadows that move with an eerie sort of life. Chains are looped like a garland from sconce to sconce, occasionally dangling a pair of sturdy manacles.
Music can be heard faintly from a room beyond; the sound lost and weak in the vastness of the stone building. You realize that if you want to reach that distant evidence of reassuring life that you must first pass row upon row of the sleeping dead.
At the entrance to the next room there are two doormen. They are dressed in identical grey well worn long coats that are lined smartly with double rows of intricate silver buttons. Tall black coachman hats preside over the grim expression on each face.
The doorman's gaze flickers down to the silver lettering on the black paper of your invitation but it is the other guardian who silently bids you to enter.
Once inside you realize that you are in a small chapel. The pews have been arranged to line the walls and the raised dais no longer holds a pulpit but a live band. The rafters here are draped with shreds of greyish gauze that look as though it was taken from some of the bodies interred here centuries ago. Beyond the rafters, the arched ceiling fades away into blackness, the flickering torches not able to adequately light its height.
Tables swathed in black velvet are arranged to your left; the tops of them heavily burdened with silver dishes filled to the brim with a wide variety of food. Centerpieces made from funeral urns contain black roses, tiny white baby's breath and trailing ivy. Ornate silver candelabra add a warm golden glow to the entire spread, making it perhaps the most well lit portion of the entire place.
Note: This is the main room. There is a small viewing room and a waiting area that have also been decorated in a similar fashion,sans food and music. These areas are more suited small groups and private conversation.
Brig watched as Viv rolled her eyes. "Unbelievable," she laughed. "I can't believe you asked me that."
"Neither do I," LT said with a blush that made his girlfriend Carol giggle.
"I totally have," pixie-like Carol replied.
Viv feigned shock and Brig clapped his hands, encouraging her high level of personal disclosure. LT said nothing but smiled.
"Aww, geez, Lothias. Was it with you?" Viv said with an embarrassed snort.
"I plead the fifth," he said coyly.
"Oh niiiiiice," Brig laughed, slapping his nephew on the shoulder.
Brig, Viv, Carol, and LT made their way slowly from the parking lot up through the gates of Holy Oaks cemetery. They walked the lit path to the back of the property, enjoying the sights and odd smells of the area. The invitation had come as a surprise, but with it being Halloween, Brig was immensely fascinated by the macabre atmosphere and potential make out spots.
Viv had agreed to come along, not as Brig's date, but with LT, Carol, and the other Pipers who were suspiciously absent for the moment. That left the four of them alone together, much to Viv and his apprehension. He nudged Viv gently as LT and Carol began to embrace on the path, nibbling on each other.
"Party pooper," Carol snorted happily.
"You know there are bets being made on who'll get caught fucking first," Brig added.
"Oh this is a classy conversation," Viv said, shaking her head with an embarrassed smile.
Brig walked to the left of her as they pulled ahead of Carol and LT. The younger couple held hands and laughed quietly at their private jokes, pretty much ignoring Viv's best imitation of a school marm. She was much raunchier than she let on, but she couldn't exactly say that in front of Brig who would no doubt say something salacious as well as suggestive. Best to keep the kids in line at least until they made an appearance at the Kensington Hall, representing Hammer's invitation that he so indifferently ignored.
"Shame Hammer didn't want to come to this."
"Yeah, but we got the invitation, so at least we can enjoy ourselves." Brig again smiled at her, doing his best to tease her.
"Yeah, yeah," she muttered. "Wonder where everyone else is?"
"Don't want to be alone with me, Vivienne?" Brig asked loud enough for LT and Carol to hear.
"Absolutely not. Keep your hands to yourself, sir," she said without looking at him, but smiling nonetheless.
Leaning towards his companion, he said.
"You look lovely tonight. I must say the ears are an excellent finishing touch."
Jin was dressed in a white suit with silver accents; his hair was long and loose and little white cat ears were perched on top. Sorcha was deeply amused and whatever humiliation there might be had tonight in looking like a Japanese cartoon character was completely worth her smile. He opted for the tinted contacts tonight instead of his glasses, one thing perched on his head was quite enough.
"Shall we do this then?"
She was here for two reasons. Well - one reason, and that would be Amir. But his own reasons to her had been logical. For one, she was to gather information. No surprise; that was what Mara did best. For another, Amir was worried about her being seen too often with him. Mara didn't think that was the case, but she did have to agree that if it appeared she was spending time with Anantya other than Amir, Subira would have less reason to complain.
She'd never met Jin before but she knew Amir trusted him and that went a long way with her. Normally she wouldn't be caught dead on the arm of a strange man but Amir had vouched for him.
"Thank you," she murmured. "Yours are very cute." It seemed an odd expression to use on someone older than she, but the white ears were adorable.
Mara looked down the long length of carpet leading to the mausoleum and Nachton's hilarious idea of a halloween party. She nodded at Jin. "I suppose, sir."
In order to compliment her companion's form Sorcha wore a long grey skirt, black bodice and white blouse. Her long red hair was worn loose and she had a shepherd's crook in one hand and a stuffed lamb in the other.
[Do you think it likely that we will find anything from this trip?]
She wasn't even sure what they were looking for but Sorcha was determined to keep her eyes open for anything of use.
Marcus stepped up beside her and looked down at Amir.
He's very focused on his duty. I admire his work ethic.
Sorcha smiled and agreed with the ghostlike wraith beside her.
Yes, I admire that about him too.
((OOC: Empathy on Amir with permission))
He wasn't used to communicating this way, but he had done it before and as always he found it ridiculously useful. It was one perk about tonight, considering how the rest of the evening was shaping up.
He'd met Sorcha earlier, as planned, to get into his "costume" as it were. He was now dyed black and tan, a color combination that met with his distaste as his fur in his jackal form was beautifully complex. But he had to admit that with this coloring he looked a lot more like someone's little german shepherd mixed mutt and less like a jackal. Given the number of 'friends' he'd made since arriving in Nachton that was a very good thing.
Amir normally wouldn't have come even in this guise but with Jin asking for this favor so nicely, it was impossible to refuse. So his reason was double... watch out for Sorcha, and look for clues. That was it, just look for clues. What constituted a clue, Amir didn't know. But he'd look for it.
He resisted the urge to scratch at the collar around his neck, although it was rather loose. How delightful it would be to have to shift back into human shape and still be bound by a leash and collar to Jin's daughter.
And for my next trick...
Amir shook his head and sat next to Sorcha as they quietly surveyed the new arrivals to the party.
"Oh! Someone walked over your grave!" Carol laughed happily no doubt feeling his shiver as he draped his arm around her shoulders.
LT chuckled softly at Carol's exuberance. Playing with her long, blond hair as it laid down the middle of her back, he looked over at her outfit.
"Aren't you ever cold?"
Carol was wearing her typical slip dress, granted not see-thru this time, but was a soft shimmering silver with a soft wrap to warm her shoulders. Her legs curved vivaciously from her mid-thigh hem and were bare.
"Not really, no. You can't possibly be cold in that."
LT looked down at his slacks, dressier leather Sketchers, and his wool long sleeve shirt underneath his his dark green Sherpa lined coat with the lining taken out. This was as dressy as he was going to get, but Carol never seemed to mind his casual style. She made up the difference with her outlandish dresses.
"The better to keep you warm with," he said with a grin.
"Aww, my big bad wolf."
LT cleared his throat and forced a laugh.
Her silver sequined cowl-neck dress brushed lightly against her thighs as they stepped into the building. Cemeteries did not scare her, not after living in the ground for practically four years. It reminded her of how much she enjoyed the sun though. How she had missed that.
Looking over at Vivienne, she gave her a quick wink and looked at Brian who stood next to her, almost permanently fixed to her hip. Lothias hadn't commented on them, but Carol hadn't planned on outing them just yet anyway. She'd happily pretend as if she had no idea until they came out and said they were fucking like madmen. Carol just hoped she could be there when that happens.
Vivienne returned the wink with her own. Carol was impressed with her new friend's outfit - Yoana Baraschi, black and heather gray wrap with cut out sleeves. Classy, Carol thought, and not too cheap either. You only go to so many midnight parties in cemeteries though - might as well look awesome sauce while doing it.
Brig wore gray slacks and layered black and gray V-neck sweaters. Carol smiled - Brig and Viv matched. She wondered if they planned that. Brian looked handsome and his body was lithe in the darker colors. Good enough to eat, she thought.
"So, should we mingle? Wait, where's the food?? I hope they have something with asparagus!"
As they moved closer to the door, Artemis cocked his hat a little further over one eye, in what he hoped was a dapper and roguish fashion. For the evening, his braid was tucked neatly into the black top hat. He might have looked almost sophisticated, if it weren't for the playing cards sticking out behind the black velvet ribbon around the base of the hat. One of which was the Queen of Hearts, of course. The rest of his outfit followed suit. He wore a black tuxedo with tails. Beneath the coat was a red brocade vest with gold buttons, which was worn over one of his black silk shirts. Around his neck was a slightly over-sized red bowtie. Nestled in his chest pocket, in front of a red silk handkerchief, was a tiny stuffed toy mouse. If he wasn't allowed to bring the tea cups, he could at least have the door mouse.
As mad hatters go, this was pretty tame. Especially for him. But, he had promised not to go to far over the edge with the costume. With a smile, he turned and reached out a hand for his Alice. He hoped she approved of his look.
It had taken a bit of sweet talking to persuade Pak to come to the cemetery for a party. And she probably would have insisted on the movies except the last time she went to the movies she'd had sticky rice thrown at her.
The costume had taken a bit more work. For some reason most Halloween costumes seemed to think women should look like cheap whores, and she should know. Pak took -massive- exception to that so her 'Alice' look was very subtle. She'd gotten lucky and had found a cocktail dress in that particular shade of blue, the 'sleeves' only barley covered her shoulders, the neck was high but the back was very low. What made it work as a costume was the slit, which was quite high, was lined with white satin it was a lot more attractive than an apron. Of course her hair was hanging long down her back held back by a ribbon. Pak was most pleased with the shoes though. She'd found a good excuse to wear a pair of patten leather Mary Jane heels that were at the back of her closet.
Taking his had she nodded.
"Come on let's see how many people we can alienate."Â?
Glancing back over her shoulder at her cousin who trailed behind them a few steps she sighed. Leaning in to Celeste, she whispered "Did we really have to bring Barbie?"
Looking over at Chandra with a sidewyas glance she just snorted at the question. Her twin was sometimes, ok almost always, rude. She didn't have to answer, she let Amber do it for her.
Smiling at his companion, he said.
"Shall we go enrich the atmosphere with our presence?"
Vaughn was currently sporting an older styled black tux and bow tie. His tall frame looked very lean in the well tailored jacket and pants. His hair was tamed into a sleek swept back side part and, thanks to Tavi it was now black. She -swore- to him that the colour would wash out easily and he just hoped that she was right. Either way, he did not feel like worrying about it at the moment. For now he was content to be in the company of Therese.
He held out the crook of his arm for the very elegant woman beside him.
Perhaps the dead would rest in peace for one night or maybe the presence of so many would either chase them off or keep them at bay. She didn't relish the idea of jumping at every shadow while he watched.
The blond wig was less awkward than she had feared. Of course even if had fallen off in the buffet table she wouldn't have cared. ThÃƒÂ©rÃƒÂ¨se silver one shoulder dress she wore. There was certainly something to be said for classic cinema.
Smiling brightly she took his arm with ease, as if it was something she did very day.
"I think we should. After all they do not know what they are missing."Â?