"Rule number two: Don't lick your relatives, especially at the dinner
Tuesday, August 29, 2994
While Ariana is tickling her kids, she gets a Trump call from
Whimsy. Her nose is broken. Ariana brings her through and heals her.
Whimsy begins ranting about Vixen, causing Ariana to ask Lucien to take
Ana and Briana into the other room. Whimsy explains that Nicholas had
sent her to help Vixen find the Faerie Wards. Whimsy gave Vixen the
ability to scent out faerie magic, then Vixen clocked her and left. Why?
Who knows? Whimsy also tells Ariana that Vixen was the one behind the
poisoning attempt on Lucretia. She was actually trying to kill Leto's
child. Ariana is very upset by this. Who told Whimsy this? Nicholas,
and she could tell that he wasn't lying. Whimsy then warns Ariana that
Jack is in Amber. Grayson invited him? Yes. This doesn't help Ariana's
mood any. Whimsy fills Ariana in on her trip to Avalon via Capillaria,
and that Grayson is there visiting Brand. She also reveals that Vixen's
father is Blake. Whimsy then brings up the ball, which Ariana had
forgotten was tonight. Whimsy tells her that if she sees Whimsy clasp
arms with her date, it's Jack, and she should feel free to go after him.
Who else has she told? Grayson, Nicholas, Teresa, and she's going to tell
Lucien notices that Ariana's happy mood has evaporated, and isn't
pleased. Ariana relays Whimsy's news. He doesn't look surprised. She
asks if he knew Vixen was behind the poisoning attempt. He doesn't say
anything. Why didn't he tell her? He didn't want to upset her. Well,
she's upset now, and more so because he didn't tell her. She says he
could have stopped her from wasting her time on Vixen. He tells her that
if anyone could reform Vixen, it would be her. So long as there was a
chance she could succeed, he didn't want to stop her. She shouldn't be
able to heal people the way she does, after all. She succeeds at what she
does so often because she doesn't know that she can't do it. She sighs
and concedes his point, although she still wishes he'd told her. She
mentions that Grayson will probably stay in Avalon. How does she feel
about this? She thinks he'll be happier there. She thinks she'd be
happier there. He points out that Avalon may not be allowing immigration
after the way Amber punished Brand.
Ariana and Lucien dress for the ball, with Lucien doing Ariana's
hair. Ariana reluctantly wears a corset, after trying in vain to find a
way to avoid it. Lucien points out that the dress code in Middlecourt is
worse. Ariana complains that it's much harder to fight while wearing one.
She's wearing Morglyph to the ball, just in case Jack shows up. Ariana's
kids can't go with them, since children under 15 are not encouraged to
attend. Jalana is disappointed by this, so Ariana offers to let her watch
through a Trump contact for a while.
Absent from the beginning of the ball are Benedict, Brand,
Bridget, Fiona, Laughter, Martin, Meander, Rinaldo, Ronan, Shard and
Vixen. Ariana spots Whimsy heading over to see Grayson, who's looking a
touch uncomfortable in his ruffled collar. Whimsy is dressed up
considerably. Ishmael joins her. Grayson heads over to the buffet.
Ariana joins Whimsy and Ishmael and contemplates Whimsy's outfit. Ishmael
compliments Ariana's booby bauble. Ariana tells him that Lucien picked it
out. Ishmael frowns. Whimsy leaves. Ariana approaches Grayson just in
time to see him begin choking. She uses the Heimlich maneuver on him, and
he coughs up a nut that goes flying across the room. Grayson tries to
speak, but nothing comes out. Ariana tells him that he's been cursed,
doubtless by Jack. She looks for Whimsy. Whimsy begins dancing with a
noble. Ariana circles closer. Ishmael heads straight for them. Whimsy
and Jack drop through the floor, leaving Whimsy's objects behind. Ishmael
and Ariana arrive and pick them up. Ariana gets Whimsy's headband, which
has lots of racked spells on it. She tries to trace where Jack went, but
Jack's magic is stronger. She considers following them through the floor,
but there's nothing but rock beneath it, making it impossible to spot
anyone else in there. She heads back over to Grayson. Ishmael asks where
Whimsy is. Grayson points at the floor. Ishmael Trumps Fiona. Fiona
comes through and examines the spot where Whimsy disappeared, then drops
through the floor.
Dinner is announced, and people slowly begin to make their way
towards the dining hall. Ariana observes that Grayson seems well, and
mentions that she knows he went to Avalon. He indicates that he'd like
writing implements. She gathers he doesn't like psychic contact. He
shakes his head. She conjures him a pen and a pad of paper. He writes a
note claiming that Whimsy brought him. She says Whimsy told her
differently. He amends the note to say that Whimsy brought him back.
Ariana says that nothing he tells her will upset her more than his lying
to her. Then she asks how he got to Avalon. Grayson shrugs. She guesses
that Jack brought him, and asks if he got what he wanted from Jack. He
doesn't respond. Was he able to speak to his mother? His face darkens,
and he writes that his mother is dead. Ariana looks horrified, and says
that she is truly sorry. He writes that he will be announced as Brand's
son, adding that the punishment must end. Ariana agrees. Grayson rants
that Brand's punishment was inexcusable. Which part of it? All of it.
She suggests that he reserve judgment until he's been in her situation.
Lucien rescues Ariana from Grayson and takes her in to dinner.
Ariana tells him of Grayson's intent, and asks if it will matter if she
isn't there for the presentation. Lucien says he needs to be there, since
his own position is rather tenuous. Ariana doesn't want to be there when
Grayson is presented. Lucien says he'll make her excuses for her. He
doesn't look real happy with Grayson.
The meal is served and is exquisite. Ariana notices that Grayson
is left-handed, like his father. Whimsy appears under the table and bangs
her head. Ariana returns her headband when she seats herself. Whimsy
says she couldn't find Grayson's voice. Ariana figures he'll have to
suffer the consequences of his actions. Ishmael gives Grayson the finger.
Grayson casts Realm of the Great to lengthen Ishmael's finger. Ariana
tries to dispel this, but can't. Whimsy conjures a note in front of
Grayson. Grayson reads it, then removes the spell.
Ariana arranges for some food to be sent up to her children and
Devlin. She catches Grayson watching her when she does this. She asks
Lucien to let Jalana Trump him later on, since she'll be gone. Lucien
suggests that she talk to Grayson again, pointing out that he's taken
after her more than his father. Maybe she misinterpreted his reasons.
Suddenly, Ariana notices that Jack is sitting next to Eric. He
waves at her. Ariana tells Lucien where Jack is, but he only sees an
empty chair. Ariana figures he's trying to taunt her into doing something
foolish. Will she? No, mainly because she knows he won't be there by the
time she reaches the chair. She point Jack out to Whimsy, in a voice loud
enough for Nicholas to hear. Alexandra asks who Jack is. Whimsy says
he's her ex-boyfriend. Fiona casts a binding spell to prevent Whimsy from
using magic. Ariana explains that Jack is the faerie avatar. Whimsy asks
what Alexandra does. She's a bouncer. Where? Ishmael answers for her,
saying, "A whorehouse," rather loudly. Alexandra flushes. Fiona mutes
Ishmael with another spell. Grayson laughs. Ishmael isn't happy. Whimsy
asks how Ariana's kids are, in an effort to change the topic. Ariana is
happy to talk about them. Grayson seems to be listening to this.
Alexandra relaxes a bit as the attention moves off of her. Whimsy asks if
Alexandra's married or has kids. Suhuy says she hasn't been betrothed.
Alexandra doesn't want to discuss it. Whimsy introduces Ishmael to
Alexandra. Ishmael takes her hand and licks it. Luther Hendrake comes up
behind him and takes him outside. They return looking somewhat mussed,
and Ishmael writes an apologetic note. Alexandra lets him take her hand
again, and he kisses it properly this time.
Dinner ends, and everyone begins walking from the dining room back
down to the throne room. Ariana falls into step beside Grayson and tells
him that if he isn't acknowledging her as his mother to spare her
feelings, he needn't bother. What does she want him to do? She doesn't
want to pretend that he's not her son. He writes that the way Brand is
now, it's hard to believe that he was a monster. He was. How does he
know she isn't as bad? Watch her and judge for himself. How does he know
Brand was bad? His existence is proof of that. He forced her? Yes. She
explains the circumstances of his conception. Why does she think he did
it? Because he could. He may have had plans for Grayson, but if so, she
doesn't know what they were. And then Jack stole her body and sold him to
Chaos? Yes, and prevented her from getting to him. What does she want
him to do? She wants to be acknowledged as his mother. If he also wants
to acknowledge Brand as his father, that's his decision. Acknowledging
that Brand is his father might cause people to view him with disfavor,
yes? Yes. He gives her arm a squeeze, then walks up to talk to Nicholas.
Once in the throne room, Nicholas sits to the right of the throne,
Eric to the left. Ariana looks strained, so Lucien puts his arm around
her. Random escorts Teresa to Nicholas, says who she is and why she's
come here, and then Nicholas bestows the title of Princess on her. Then
Alex is named a Prince. Then Ishmael is named a Prince. Then Whimsy is
brought forward. She toys with the idea of psychically forcing Random to
announce her as Whimsy, but thinks better of it since Fiona is watching
her. Random announces her as born Dahlia, called Whimsy, which mollifies
her a bit. She is titled a Duchess. Then Grayson is announced as
Ariana's son and given the title of Marquis.
Now the ball begins. Nicholas takes Beauty out onto the dance
floor. Ishmael dances with Whimsy. Ariana dances with Lucien, her mood
much improved. Merlin dances with Alexandra. Elspeth dances with
Grayson. Each waltz is 20 minute long.
Gavin asks to dance with Ariana next. She looks at Lucien, who
indicates he has Middlecourt nobles to speak with. Gavin is anxious to
start his conjuration lessons. Ariana harasses him about the cat again.
He claims that Angel told him that looking into her background would be
counter to the culture that she came from. Of course, that culture is one
of the things she won't discuss with him. Convenient, no? Gavin admits
that he will be a little on his guard. Ariana says that she has learned
that trusting without reservation is a good way to get hurt. So will she
continue to teach him? Yes. Was he afraid he wouldn't? No, but the
distraction is needed. He hasn't met that many people in Amber. Vixen
doesn't like him, and Ronan hates him. Why does Ronan hate him? He tells
her how he interrupted Ronan's meeting with some important people when he
first came to Amber. Ariana figures Gavin probably doesn't want to be
near Ronan at the moment anyway, given Ronan's divided loyalties. Gavin
tells her that Ronan was trying to find Maris recently. They speculate on
why Ronan missed his presentation. Ariana asks if Gavin has made any
progress towards finding his Feyan parent. He knows who his father is,
and he knows his father knows, but there hasn't been much further
communication on the topic.
Ariana notices a burning flame by Mirelle, and realizes that she's
conjured an acetylene torch. Whimsy is sitting next to her. Ariana heads
in that direction, causing Mirelle to snuff the flame out. Then she
leaves and dances with Ishmael. She's quite drunk. Ariana isn't happy
that Whimsy got her drunk. Whimsy insists it's harmless. Mirelle passes
out on the dance floor. Ishmael brings her outside. Ariana follows. She
checks Mirelle out. She's just intoxicated. Ishmael wakes her up and she
insists on finishing their dance. Ishmael tells Mirelle that she'll feel
better if she throws up. She does so over the balcony, much to the dismay
of the unfortunate individual below. Ishmael opts to find another dance
partner. Mirelle goes back inside and passes out in a corner. Ariana has
a servant bring Mirelle up to her quarters and then goes looking for
Lucien. She finds him dancing with Alexandra.
Jalana Trumps Ariana and watches the ball through her eyes for a
while. She wants to go to the coronation. Ariana says that depends on
what Nicholas decides.
Ariana dances with Foster, who's still attracted to her, much to
his dismay. When he turns red, Ariana asks if he needs air. He excuses
himself to get them drinks. Driscoll rescues Foster by dancing with her
instead. Ariana asks how he's doing. He doesn't talk much, and is
obviously still depressed. Ariana tries to lift his spirits a bit.
Ariana chats with Felix for a bit about how Foster and Laughter
are doing, how plans for the wedding are coming, etc. Felix still hasn't
set a date for the wedding.
Wednesday, August 30, 2994
Lucien dances the last waltz with Ariana. The ball ends at one in
the morning. As they enter their quarters, Ariana hears a noise from the
boys' bedroom. She checks their room and finds Vincent in the throes of a
nightmare. She wakes him up. He doesn't remember the dream. Morgan
mumbles that he's been doing this for about a week now. Vincent asks how
the ball was. Ariana gets him some hot cocoa to help him relax, then
tells him about the ball psychically until he falls asleep. As she gets
up to leave, she notices a piece of paper protruding from under his
pillow. She pulls it out and looks at it. It's a Trump card, 75%
finished and already feeling kind of cool. It's very good. The subject
of the card is Sand. Ariana faints.
Ariana wakes up in the morning in bed and sits up with a start.
Lucien mumbles that the card is in the desk drawer. He thinks that's the
drawing that Vincent was working on. Ariana tells him of Vincent's
nightmare, and that he's been having them for a week. Did Lucien know
about this? No. Does he think Sand is still alive? He asks if Amberites
truly die. She says he's asking the wrong person. She seems to be in a
state of shock.
Nicholas, Eric, Ronan and Vixen are missing from breakfast.
Whimsy makes small talk with Ariana's children. Ishmael asks if the kids
are ready to begin their lessons. They practiced while he was gone.
Ishmael would like to see what they've been doing. Vincent looks at his
parents and says he'll have to show Ishmael later, since his drawing is
missing. Ariana just stares numbly at her plate. Ishmael throws a grape
at her forehead and asks if she's in. Yes. Ishmael notices that Whimsy
has an engagement ring and asks where that came from. Something that she
picked up in Shadow. Is she going to whack this husband too? Whimsy
tells him he said the silent part out loud again. Ishmael says he intends
to go after Zane when the chasm mends. Whimsy wants to pick something up
in Chaos. Ishmael tells Vincent not to follow his behavioral example. He
should follow Felix's. Whimsy asks Alexandra if she knows where Ronan is.
No. Whimsy thinks it's odd that he missed his own confirmation. Ishmael
adds that Eric's tart was missing too, which gets him a dirty look from
Alexandra. Ariana's kids look interested. Ishmael decides to eat
elsewhere and goes to sit at another table with Felix and his family.
Alexandra tells Whimsy that she's tried looking into Ronan's disappearance
and met resistance. She also says that Whimsy hangs out with faeries too
much. Whimsy says that she's concerned about missing family members.
Ariana continues to be shell-shocked. Lucien pats her leg from time to
Ariana sends her older kids off to their art lessons, and Ana and
Briana over to play with Devlin. Then she hugs Lucien and just shakes for
a while. They are interrupted by the arrival of Ishmael, who shows Ariana
a nearly complete sketch of Sand. He tells her that Vincent whipped it
out in about 15 minutes, to show Ishmael what he was working on before it
disappeared. He guesses that she has the missing sketch. She admits
this, and tells Ishmael about the nightmares that Vincent has been having,
and how his mother, Sand, was able to send dreams over Trump. She's
afraid that Sand may be behind Vincent's nightmares, except that Sand is
dead, so that should be impossible. Ishmael Trumps Fiona and brings her
through to look at the card. She's very impressed, and announces that she
will be taking over Shannon and Vincent's Trump lessons. She also assures
Ariana that Sand is dead. Ariana wants to know what's causing Vincent's
nightmares, then. Vincent. Why is he giving himself nightmares? Fiona
looks impatient and asks Ishmael where the boys are. In his studio. She
asks him to take her there. Ariana insists on going with them. Fiona
doesn't want her showing up looking like death warmed over and scaring
Vincent. Ariana argues that if Fiona would tell her what's going on,
maybe she wouldn't look scared. She and Fiona lock eyes with each other
for a minute, then Fiona assures Ariana that Vincent isn't in any danger,
and that she'll explain his situation when she fully understands it. She
asks Ariana to stay behind, since she thinks Vincent will speak more
freely to her without one of his parents present. Ariana agrees.
Ishmael leaves for the studio, so the boys aren't freaked out by
he and Fiona arriving at the same time. Ariana asks Fiona what she should
do with the other Trump of Sand that Vincent drew. Fiona asks if she can
have it. Ariana fetches it from the desk drawer and asks why it's cold if
Sand is dead. Because what Vincent has drawn is actually a form of a
Trump trap. It looks like one person, but actually connects to another.
In this case, Vincent. It seems likely that he's inherited his mother's
skill, and has been sending himself nightmares via the Trump card. Ariana
asks why he's doing this to himself. That's what Fiona will try to find
out. Ariana thanks her for her help and asks if there's anything she can
do to help. Fiona tells her the best thing she can do is not worry until
she has to.
Ariana discusses the situation with Lucien, who was, of course,
listening in. He doesn't think it's anything more serious than Vincent's
Trump ability manifesting early. Ariana asks why Lucien never learned
Trump. Well, he never seemed to need it, and he can't draw to save his
life. Ariana teases him a bit about that, and reveals that she's been
learning how to draw Trump while she was at Ygg. She also thanks him for
his help with Grayson at the ball. He doesn't think he really did
anything. She reminds him that he was the one who convinced her to talk
to Grayson again. He jokes that she's beginning to rub off on him.
Ariana is rather pleased by this. She asks how he did in his mingling at
the ball. All right. What was he trying to accomplish? Just making sure
they have a safe nest in Middlecourt, in case they ever need it. Does he
think Middlecourt will be safer than Amber when the chasm mends? There's
no way to be certain until the event actually occurs. Does it bother him
that they might not be moving to Middlecourt as soon as originally
planned? Not really. He's happy as long as she's around. Ariana
responds by showing him how much she missed him while she was gone.
Later on, Ariana talks to Lucien a bit more about the Ygg trip.
She says she thought about a lot of things while she was gone, including
having another baby. She thinks she needs to in order to finish healing
from losing Grayson. Lucien has no objections to this. Ariana plans to
wait until after the chasm is mended, since there will likely be fighting
between Amber and Chaos when that happens, and she expects to be involved
in it. He warns her to be careful. She assures him that she has too much
to come back for to do anything foolish. There's nothing like spending
five years away to make someone appreciate what they have. He agrees.
Ariana asks how the children handled starting their lessons with
their tutors. They didn't give him any trouble. Obviously, he's scarier
than her. Does he have any idea why Ronan missed his own presentation
ceremony? No. Ronan doesn't really interest him, to be honest. Ariana
is worried that he may be in trouble, and hopes Random will know
something. She needs to talk to him anyway, about an idea she had while
at Ygg. She wants to establish a permanent hospital of sorts in Amber
city. And maybe a library, someday. She also wants to look into finding
out who her father really was. Lucien thinks all of that will certainly
keep her out of trouble for a while. Will he help her with the last item?
He tells her she'll need to wait until Nicholas finishes wreaking his
vengeance in Chaos before they can safely investigate. Then he doesn't
think they'll find anything in the Shadow where she was born? He'd rather
start from the source. Does he think she'll ever know who her father was?
Will it affect who she is? She isn't sure. At least she'll know where
half of her came from. Lucien doesn't understand why this is important.
Ariana thinks that's because he's always known who his parents were. Will
he agree to help her, even if he finds out something bad about her father?
He asks if he can think about that before answering. Ariana isn't happy
about this, but agrees. He tells her that he will protect her above all
else. She points out that when he hides things from her, that often hurts
more than the information he was hiding. He thinks some risks are worth
taking, if he can save her hurt. She tells him that he's being
overprotective, but she understands. He is making her suspect that he
already has some ideas about who her father might be, though. He
studiously doesn't respond to that statement.
Ariana tracks down Random and asks if he knows why Ronan wasn't at
the ball last night. He tells her that Iseult reported him missing
yesterday morning. She's out looking for him, along with Eric and some of
Ronan's men. Ariana asks him to send her word if he hears anything more.
She then tells him about her hospital idea. He says that no one's ever
done that before, but there's no reason she can't try. She asks what sort
of approval process she has to go through. Random offers to speak to
Nicholas for her, and have Bill draw up the necessary paperwork, leaving
her free to look for a site and personnel. That sounds good to Ariana.
She's hoping she can persuade Gérard to give her some assistance,
when he's not out at sea, since he's more well-known in Amber than she is.
Random comments that using a family member for the common good is a new
one. He warns her that she'll need to find funding to pay for the
hospital building, as well as the staff. Most of the funding that might
normally be available to help with this is being directed to other areas
right now. Namely Nicholas' planned invasion of Chaos. Ariana doesn't
want to wait until after the invasion to begin working on the hospital,
since the invasion itself will produce wounded. Random will get in touch
with her once her project gets the official nod. Ariana plans to speak to
Gérard next, but Random informs her that he's out at sea, somewhere
in the Golden Circle, so she opts to wait until he returns to
"Boys, how would you like to learn man things...like spit?" -- Felix to
Crispin and Donal
"So, Felix spends the morning teaching his children to spit?" -- GM
"Not anywhere my parents can see us." -- Felix
"Where are the women!?!" -- Ishmael
"The chambermaids go scurrying." -- GM
"Meander is not (at the ball)." -- GM
"When your name is Meander, do you ever really show up anywhere?" --
"No, none of my spells involve protecting my butt." -- Whimsy to GM
"Rule number two: Don't lick your relatives, especially at the dinner
table." -- Luther to Ishmael
"Son, you got set up. You've got the full qualities of a Hendrake." --
Luther to Ishmael
"I still haven't fireballed (Bleys) at the dinner table. And I can't do
it tonight." -- Whimsy to the group
"Maybe Nimue could help you. Nimue. Nicholas' dead sister." -- Whimsy to
"Don't worry, Whimsy's with (Mirelle)." -- Matthew to Kris
"See, (Mirelle's) happy." -- Whimsy
"She's unconscious." -- Ariana
"So, she's happy." -- Whimsy
"So, Whimsy's talking to Jack buck naked, but when her mom comes in she's
covering up?" -- GM
"I had suds. Everything was concealed." -- Whimsy
"The presence in the (demonic book) seems almost malevolent." -- GM
"Duh!" -- Gavin
Game Logs for Sessions
Character Logs for Sessions
All text on this page is © 1998 by Kris Fazzari, with the exception of
the attributed quotes.
Last modified on March 6, 1998 by Kris Fazzari.