Tacharan wasn't all cliche bad boys, rebels and riff raff. Margaret had some very proper and we'll need contacts with ties to the group. As his maker was currently in India he was taking the meetings in the states, Europe too if the need arose he supposed.
This events meeting had been with a gentleman much like himself, if notably older, but a former nobel man, someone with wealth and taste. This meant the rather casual meeting was at The Arch. As the meeting had wrapped up he was now free to enjoy the museum. He was rather impressed with the museum he really hadn't expected something so fine in the states and was currently wandering through a special exhibit of Manet.
Honestly he was finding settling into Nachton was suiting him. The estate he'd purchased was coming along nicely, although only his suite and library were completed. He was debating hiring a designer though, he was annoyed with the amount of time and detail he was having to oversee. Perhaps there was one with ties to the clan, possibly a familiar he couldn't see a vampire taking such a frivolous job.
He had several clients now, granted two of them were human, but the did have money and their lack of class and desperation to be accepted into the upper crust let them be easily lead and made his commissions even larger so he tolerated them.
Tonight though he was just enjoying the art. Manet had been a contemporary, not that he'd ever met the artist, and something about the colors and lines and even subject matter made him feel comfortable and at home. Or they would if the only other person here wasn't hoarding Luncheon on the Grass. Certainly they weren't blocking it or anything so I'll mannered, they were just where Reginald wanted to be.
Bao was not a huge fan of the impressionists, oh they had been revolutionary at the time and certainly still had merit, it was just so misinterpreted and watered down these days. Manet, however, wasn't exactly an impressionist. Manet was transitional. Bao had several Manet's in his collection but he didn't have this one and no matter how much he coveted it he never would. Unless he resorted to forgery and theft. The idea had crossed his mind more than once but he couldn't countinece the idea. Mostly because he wouldn't be able to flaunt the painting if he stole it.
He was well aware there was one other person in the exhibition. He was aware that they were annoyed with him. He also was not going to move, he was not in the way or being rude.
"Good evening Mr. Chamberlain."
He said in his cool, calm, cultured voice without taking his eyes off Luncheon on the Grass. The faintest flicker of a smile ghosted around the corners of his mouth as Bao saw the much younger vampire start just a little out of the corner of his eye.
Of course Reginald couldn't help but be curious about the source of the voice and actually took the time to look at the notably shorter man. The first thing he noticed was the man's suit, perfectly tailored beautiful fabric very polished and the cufflinks were something he probably would have picked himself, probably Victorian. He was appropriately impressed and moved so he could see the face.
"Ah. Mr. Hoang, good evening."
Reginald smiled a little more brightly than was strictly necessary to just be polite. Margaret held him in high regard and Reginald had always been impressed by him and had hired him on more than one occasion. Beyond that Reginald found him rather...
"I'm surprised you'd know I was in town."
Surprised and a bit hopeful. Certainly there'd not been the faintest flicker of interest from Mr. Hoang, he'd not even been invited to address the man by his first name, but anything was possible. Granted as he'd never see Mr. Hoang even smile let alone express any interest in anyone it was not probable but it was still possible.
He said simply. Christopher was his middle son, also a member of the Night, and was currently based in the UK and kept him well informed when appropriate. Interestingly, Christopher was apparently interested in Reginald. Even Bao found the pseudo love triangle rather amusing. Perhaps, if the occasion presented itself, he would even tell someone.
While Bao had looked away from the painting, the art was still more on his mind than not.
"What brought you out this evening?"
As he had no intention of flirting with Mr. Chamberlain he'd just as soon move the conversation along. There was a chance Pakpao would be joining him and Bao did not care to advertise to just any nosey Nightsman who happened along. Certainly Jin and Mara knew, but they were special cases. Ran, of course, went without saying..
He had rather half hoped Mr Hoang's work with the Rose might have tipped him off. He had hoped Mr. Hoang might be interested. But apparently not. Still, no point in giving up just yet, they lived a long time and wars weren't won in a day.
Still Reginald wasn't denied many things and found the quiet refusals, the lack of acknowledgement even, slightly frustrating. Certainly he wasn't going to say anything but it chafed slightly. If Hoang wasn't someone he had to acknowledge as at least an equal Reginald would have pressed his suite harder, however, there was no doubt that the older vampire could make his life miserable on multiple levels if he wanted to. As such it was better to be patient subtle and hopeful.
And then it was all business. Reginald actually wondered if Hoang had any kind of hobbies or interests, other than art the man was well versed in art he'd discovered. Other than that, however, the man did not share any personal details. The only reason Reginald knew about Christopher was because Christopher had said something. This was as relaxed and informal as he'd ever seen the lawyer. Perhaps he'd have to do some digging into Hoang.
"Just touching base with some contacts outside of the clan. Letting them know I'm here on a more regular basis."
He might have tried to intrigue and entice someone else. He might have used the information to flirt, but with Mr. Hoang he suspected at best the effort would be wasted and at worse it would annoy him.
"Perhaps I could introduce you."
He tease just a little. For all he could be patient it would be nice to shake a spark of interest or even rejection or any kind of reaction out of the other man.
"All of my sons are dutiful."
It was a very true statement. Although well aware he wasn't able to command the same level of dedication and loyal Amir was able to inspire, Pakpao aside, all his choices had been very careful and deliberate and had come with the same conditions Amir had set before him. As a result, despite his more distant personality, his sons were all quiet loyal.
Bao nodded at that statement, both acknowledging and approving. He might be trying to find a work life balance but that didn't mean Bao didn't still obsess about his work, especially anything he did for the clan. So he did appreciate that Mr. Chamberlain was at least aware of his responsibilities.
"Might one ask if it is regarding a particular assignment or situation?"
Honestly expected Me. Chamberlain to avoid the question. It really was none of his business and Bao knew it. He simply felt obligated to ask, if the Night was going to stir something up, he would like the Rose to be prepared if at all possible.
Bao raised a quite imperious eyebrow at that suggestion and even more at the tone. This game was going to get old fast Bao decided and his manner became even more distant.
"I doubt that would be appropriate."
Besides, he found the idea rather sexy. Certainly he was very fond of Margaret, she was a very contentious creator, but there was nothing motherly about her. It took very little imagination to picture Mr. Hoang as rather distant probably stern father with a brood of sons. Further if Christopher Beckett was any indication all of his sons would be beautiful.
"Christopher didn't mention he was part of a large family."
He wishes it was part of a larger assignment, something that the Rose could or should assist with. Reginald, however, didn't even consider lying or exaggerating. There was a time and a place for such things and, in fact, he was quite good at it but undoubtedly it would only cause mistrust and resentment later on.
"No, not tonight. Tonight was just to ensure the lines of communication stay open. Huge has helped us stay clear of some challenging situations."
It was a very beneficial arrangement, even though Huge gave very little specific information, certainly nothing that would compromise his clan and he didn't ask for anything that might compromise Anantya. It had, on occasion, kept there from being too many cooks in the kitchen and very probably prevented a few misunderstandings.
"Oh I doubt meeting over drinks would be inappropriate or open you up to criticism."
Yes he had phrased it as a flirt, yes he was hinting at the idea that Mr. Hoang should have a drink with him. To keep from being too obvious Reginald continued.
"You must deal with the other clans occasionally."
"I'm certain that is very good of Huge."
Bao said the name with the faintest sense of distaste. He didn't care for such an informal introduction. He would have preferred a last name, but he didn't ask for one. If nothing else it would only encourage Mr. Chamberlain who was making another attempt at catching his interest.
What would Amir say or think?
Probably that he needed to get "laid" but Bao was fairly certain his creator would understand he simply wasn't interested in the young vampire. So again he simply ignored the flirting.
"Certainly on occasion but not terribly frequently."
Having said that he casually moved on to another painting hoping to discourage Mr. Chamberlain, but doubting it would matter.
As Mr. Hoang rather casually moved away, no doubt in an effort to end the conversation Reginald considered letting him go. He wasn't much for chasing people who weren't interested in him, but for some reason he just couldn't give up totally. So he compromised and let Mr. Hoang move off, after all he was still in ear shot, and then changed the subject to something that was more in Mr. Hoang's realm of interest.
"You know I had the opportunity to bid on Self-portrait With a Palette a few years ago. Really a lovely piece, I've always liked how he handled the lighting there, one of my favorite self portraits. Unfortunately I had to drop out of the bidding."
The painting had gone for slightly less than the high end of the estimate but Reginald certainly couldn't afford it. Oh compared to any number of vampires his age he was doing extremely well but there had been no way to justify just under thirty million dollars on a painting. Ah well the new owner would die and it would be sold and he'd have another chance at it and he'd probably be in a better financial position
Bao was determined to enjoy the exhibit. The curator might be a wolf but she and her staff did an excellent job. For a moment or two Bao wondered if any vampires were on staff at the museum and if they and the curator knew anything about each other.
But then Olympia took his attention and he stopped speculating about museum staffing issues. He'd seen the painting several times and each time his interpretation of the prostitute's expression changed. Bao was also astounded to see both Olympia and The Luncheon on the Grass together. It was the first time he'd been able to compare and contrast them at the same time.
Or it would be if Mr. Chamberlain would stop talking. Just as Bao was preparing to be annoyed and considering being churlish he almost smiled. At it was the polite cough might have been a laugh.
"It is an interesting piece even if it lacks color and he was clearly being influenced by the impressionists at the time but worth having in my collection."
Bao actually quite liked the expression on the artist's face and the more transitional feel if the painting. He might, however, sell it at some point. It was doubtful though. Bao's collection was extensive even he was astounded by its value and size and he very -very- rarely sold even if he disliked the piece.
She frowned when she saw Bao was in front of Olympia. She very probably would have made a caustic comment about her own history in the same profession to needle Bao a bit, but there was someone else more or less with him. Given that Bao had just made a comment about his collection Pak concluded the man was another vampire, probably another Anantya. It took a fair bit of courage to keep her from just turning around and leaving.
The other guy was pretty damned good looking, perversely though that made Pak even more leery of him. Granted most vampires seemed to be at least...-at least- an eight on the hotness meter, but that didn't keep her from being suspicious.
"You didn't tell me this was going to be a double date."
She said very quietly as she stood next the Bao but not taking her eyes off the painting. Bao had about three minutes to either ditch slick or explain.
Now he wasn't terribly surprised that Hoang would have purchased such a painting. He was a little curious if it was because he liked the painting or if it was an investment.
The young lady, however, was dreadfully interesting. She was beautiful. Reginald couldn't help but notice her blue eyes and wondered if they were contacts. At first he wondered if they were a couple. It didn't sit quite right though. The way she approached Hoang the careful polite distance between them the lack of eye contact or even the smallest sign of affection or even an actual greeting seemed to rule that out.
A meeting then? A client?
He might not be able to ask but he could introduce himself.
"Terribly sorry. Am I intruding?"
He offered his hand, a slight bow and his most charming smile.
"Reginald Chamberlain miss. A pleasure to meet you."
Regardless he had to play this carefully. He did not want Mr. Chamberlain to know Pakpao was his daughter. The fact that she didn't like to advertise that would help, in fact she didn't even identify that way and kept that part of their relationship very vague, but she could also be rather contrary and would undoubtedly encourage Mr. Chamberlain to join them if he tried to chase the man off.
"Mr. Chamberlain, Pakpao Metharom. She had said she might meet me this evening but as our plans were not set in stone you cannot be interrupting."
Yes that was a bit of a hint but with enough of an invitation that he felt confident Pakpao would reach her own conclusions. If he were very lucky she'd actually be the one chasing Mr. Chamberlain off. If he could pull that off he would be utterly thrilled.
Pak wasn't stupid. Bao was a pretty private person. So to her way of thinking that was tantamount to announcing this Reginald guy as a vampire. As Anantya. It wasn't like she harbored any kind of grudge againat the other clan or like the Anantya and Evenhet didn't get along it just meant Pak wasn't going to warm up to him nearly as fast as she might.
The fact that Bao didn't want him gone annoyed her slightly. Well if Bao was going to play nice she was going to be a bit more assertive.
"No, of course you aren't interrupting but apparently I am. You'll both excuse me?"
Her relationship with Bao had morphed into something very odd. He did insist on playing a paternal role but since her unfortunate incarceration he'd settled into more of a step father kind of thing. He'd backed off a bit and she'd relaxed a bit. It wasn't exactly a friendship but it wasn't antagonistic either. In this situation he'd let her go and they'd meet again later with no hard feelings and minimal guilt from her.
He did take the willingness to flee nearly immediately as indicating the meeting was personal rather than professional. Maybe he had been wrong, maybe it was a romantic trust, maybe she was married or otherwise unavailable. If that were so though, why give her name? Perhaps it was a fake name? A code word? He would puzzle it out later.
Now the question was should he stay or go. Even though Hoang had been politely indicating a total lack of interest Reginald was tempted to try and persuade Pakpao to stay and to join the couple. However, he also suspected if he ever were to get anywhere with Hoang interrupting this meeting would be held against him.
Discretion was the better part of valor.
"No please don't leave on my account, I really should be on my way.
He withdrew a few steps and officially took his leave.
"It was very nice to run into you this evening Mr. Hoang and a pleasure to meet you Ms. Metharom. I do hope to have the pleasure again."
A short half bow and he turned and walked away making his exit rather deliberate not wanting either of them to think he was lurking or attempting to eavesdrop.
All in all a very interesting evening he was not dissatisfied.
Her method, however, was unexpected. He truly had anticipated Pakpao asking Mr. Chamberlain to excuse them rather than her removing herself. Given her style at the chess board, however, perhaps he should have. Unless she had a very specific plan Pakpao tended to hold her queen in reserve and as she had no real information regarding Mr. Chamberlain it stood to reason she would do much the same in this situation. Regardless, Bao held himself quite neutrally as this played out.
Fortunately Mr. Chamberlain had some manners and choose to excuse himself rather than break up a meeting. Granted Bao was rather certain that Mr. Chamberlain would be trying to work out what kind of a meeting it was and who Pakpao was to him. Somethings could not be helped though, Bao was rather satisfied he'd minimized the encounter and any possible damage though. He also thought with her offer to withdraw Pakpao had helped.
Still, despite, or perhaps because of Mr. Chamberlain's very clear exit he spoke in Siamese, undoubtedly the other Anantya spoke French.
" You're a fan of Manet then?"
Bao's handling of the situation was a little odd. Usually he got a little bristley if she was rude. He was all about the manners. Maybe that Hawaiian shirt was loosening him up. At the very thought that he had worn it rather than immediately throwing it away Pak couldn't suppress a smile.
It was short lived as he spoke to her in Siamese. Bao didn't do that often. The fact that he did, said something about Reginald and it was that she should be wary. Pak frowned at Bao but let him move the evening on.
"Not my favorite artist of the erra but I enjoy his work. Met him once, he was at least polite."
Given the fact that a slight expression passed over Bao's typically expressionless face Pak decided she had surprised him. That might be her win for the evening as his knowledge of art far surpassed her's.
((OOC... all out))