little wilson

Long Game 49/Anonymous Game 3: Window to the Past

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I am not convinced this feast will work. Too many agendas and schemes. Far too many diplomats and groups represented. Such a celebration of Unity and Peace will be easily marred by secrets and people attempting to advance their own agenda, rather than to celebrate and bring the Parshendi further into Alethi Culture. I need to set a precedent.

I flash the sign of need to an eager master servant, and he scuttles to my side as quickly as is appropriate. “I need a glass of Orange wine.” He bows and returns to the bar. I scan the crowd, looking for my Brother and Son. Neither of them are here at the back wall with me, where I expected them to be. Neither is my dear wife Navani. Hopefully they are celebrating.

The servant returns, proffering a glass. “Very good. I commend you for your speed.” I stand and raise the glass. All over the feast hall, watchful eyes glance my way. When they see I mean to speak, they nudge the less watchful eyes and gesture my way.

I smile. A rare sight on a King, but an important one to allow the people to see. “Welcome friends! It pleases me that so many of you could make it tonight. Representatives or cultures from all of Roshar, and especially the newly discovered Parshendi Culture.” I raise my glass to Lord Klade. Not a brightlord in the Alethi sense, but close enough to a Highprince of his people. “I know better than most the opportunities that are allowed tonight, the alliances and trades that can be made. But as the King of Alethkar, I ask that you try to enjoy yourself tonight. Let loose, and talk of simple things. Leave work for tomorrow. Tonight, I ask you to Celebrate! Lord @SE_Klade, have your Drummers begin their song.” I raise the Orange Wine to my lips and drink deeply.

Some people cheer, some laugh. The Drums begin, and I sit back down. I need to talk to Klade in person tonight, to make sure his people’s needs have been seen to. But first I must hold my little court, and greet all who have come to talk to me.

Edited by SE_Gavilar_Kholin
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Navani Kholin held up her fake I’m-so-interested smile as a woman near her outlined the current gossip so far circulating. Normally, she would have been content with the information. Now, she had other thoughts on her mind.

Drinks, yes. Food, yes. Drummers, yes. Is there anything I forgot to tell the arrangers? 

Navani glanced around the palace as her Informant continued, outlining in great detail a certain noblewoman’s controversial political beliefs. Navani wrote a note down to remember that on a hankercheif, before carefully folding it and placing it within her safehand pouch. Perhaps the next time she was argued against, she could bring up the hypocrisy? Yes, that could work.

As Navani looked around, she saw some familiar faces. Her eyes lingered for a heartbeat on one such face, the face of a King. Gavilar Kholin hadn't noticed her stare yet, but before he could Navani snapped herself out of the trance, girlish smile reducing to a more focused frown as he tried outlining an idea for a new fabrial. She was a scholarly woman, Navani had to remember thar. Not one to gush over men! Such public affections were not very Alethi.

"That is all, thank you," Navani addressed the gossip, continuing her fabrial drawing. She couldn't pin down what exactly it would do, yet, but she was sure she was onto something.

Edited by SE_Navani_Kholin
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1 hour ago, SE_Gavilar_Kholin said:

But first I must hold my little court, and greet all who have come to talk to me.

Ah yes, proof once again that the smelly nobles find their way to the smelliest of the lot. I have observed that it is human behavior to gravitate towards those individuals who can obscure their own faults. The sad thing is, by sheer association with such a odoriferous individual such as yourself, none of the underlings can smell any of the others, and since the most malodorous person tends to end up in charge, that insulting scent ends up being considered a good thing. I of course have never let any sort of scent spread to me. If I whiffed of anything more than wit, people would expect more of me.  

Edited by SE_Wit
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The Drunk Beggar had a deep secret. Well, two actually. He wasn't drunk, and he wasn't a beggar. How could a man be drunk when there was still wine to had? From long experience, he had found that the best cure for any negative effects of alcohol was more wine. Not just this orange water, neither. Sapphire, violet, even some Horneater white, available for the drinking. Truly, the Almighty was generous, and the Kholins were His devoted servants.

The Court called him a beggar, but that wasn't hardly true. Wine was something to be shared freely and openly, without the constraint of spheres. One did not call the king a beggar when he asked his men to go to war, nor should a man who shared his wine with all who passed be deemed a beggar merely for asking wine in return. Today, had broken open his entire storehouse of wine, all the bottles of which fit under his rags. He would drink well tonight, but far better to drink together. He set off in search of someone to share a bottle of wine, walking towards the edge of the Feast Hall.

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Navani Kholin heard Wit's words with an attentive ear, understanding what he said but ignoring it all the same. That was how it usually went with Wit. Still, Navani subconsciously checked her perfume again, which, as always, was impeccable. She was a queen of class, after all.

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"Navani dear, I believe our court Jester is insulting us, rather than the other nobles. It might be prudent to search for a new one. I believe this one will be killed in a duel soon."

Edited by SE_Gavilar_Kholin
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I frowned. "My dear liege lord, this is why you have me, because I was in fact complimenting you. It is truly rare to stink of responsibility as much as you do. In fact by that logic, I was insulting my own wit, for if I have no sense of responsibility, then how am I to remain responsible for insulting all who deserve the sharpness of my tongue?" 

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Eshonai wandered through the palace, simply absorbing the sights. This was incredible! She had never seen anything of the sort, and was nearly permanently humming to awe with everything she saw. The only real times she wasn't awed, but more curious, was when her gaze fell upon these Parshmen. So similar to the Listeners, yet so different. Where was their music? Did they feel something was wrong whenever they looked at her, as she did with them? If only she could get one to talk, but even that was proving impossible.

She was stood, mouth slightly ajar, admiring a...What had they called it? Ah yes, a portrait, of someone's mother, when a dirty man in a ragged costume approached and waved a bottle in her direction. Not knowing the protocols, since everyone else seemed to be drinking from glasses or tankards, she gingerly accepted. "Thank you," she said to gratitude. Taking a drink, she almost wished she hadn't. This tasted like something that oozed from a greatshell's carcass. "Thank you," she repeated, handing it back, before turning to find more things to gawk at.

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Elhokar grabbed a platter of food from a passing parshman. This was a feast, after all, and he was hungry. He nodded to a few people he passed on his way to a table, carefully avoiding the wit. That man was insufferable. And also uncharacteristically devoid of variety. He'd only commented on smells so far. Unless that was his gimmick for the night. Argh.

Elhokar sat down with his food. 

Om nom nom.

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33 minutes ago, SE_Eshonai said:

"Thank you," she repeated, handing it back, before turning to find more things to gawk at.

I passed by the young Parshendi woman, and leaned over. "Make sure you don't gawk at Sadeas. He might get the wrong idea, and frankly that would be awful."

16 minutes ago, SE_Elhokar_Kholin said:

Om nom nom

Next, I walked up to the prince. "Elhokar! Good to see you! Watch out for that onomatopoeia, it'll chomp you in the back eventually. Now, does anyone know where Sadeas is?"

Edited by SE_Wit
consistency of pronoun
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Torol Sadeas entered the room, head held high. He didn't exactly approve of what Gavilar had decided regarding the Parshendi. He'd rather conquer them than make peace with them. However, he was there to serve his king.

Sadeas walked past Wit, rolling his eyes at the base insults. Why any king would insist on having a Wit was beyond him. They were always a waste of air.

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Amaram followed Sadeas into the room, carefully avoiding Wit, he’d been burned by that man far too many times.

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"Ah, my two favorite people in the entire court! I complimented the King on his scent earlier, but I find your odor far more offensive than even poor Dalinar's typical aroma." I glanced over in the direction where I presumed the highprince would be. Not that he didn't have his reasons. "Anyway, Amaram, how does your cheek feel? I heard it got awful red after the last time Jasnah talked to you, although I wasn't entirely able to determine whether that was due to embarrassment or her slapping you."

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Ialai walked closely behind her husband for a time, doing her best to ignore Wit while observing the room. Already the vultures of politics had descended. Squawking and squabbling. She supposed that she couldn’t complain too much - after all, wasn’t she one of the vultures herself? The only difference between them was their careful alliance with the King.

But these vultures were armed with weapons, and although the cries of dissent against Gavilar had been silenced temporarily, Ialai had no doubt what would happen if the worst came to worst. Already, she could picture her network of spies, whispering about a rebellion. All these vultures would tear Alethkar apart, fighting for a single scrap of its legacy, if given the chance.

The only possible exception was Wit, but that was mainly because she was sure someone would have had him killed by then. 

Edited by SE_Ialai_Sadeas
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10 minutes ago, SE_Wit said:

"Ah, my two favorite people in the entire court! I complimented the King on his scent earlier, but I find your odor far more offensive than even poor Dalinar's typical aroma." I glanced over in the direction where I presumed the highprince would be. Not that he didn't have his reasons. "Anyway, Amaram, how does your cheek feel? I heard it got awful red after the last time Jasnah talked to you, although I wasn't entirely able to determine whether that was due to embarrassment or her slapping you."

"Can we just throw him out now, and be done with this idiocy?" Sadeas looked toward Gavilar.

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When I had been convinced ro hire the man as my Wit, he had seemed far better at judging a mood. And at judging a person. Now he seemed rather base and drunk. "At least temporarily, for an hour or two until fewer people are sober. The people need to become comfortable with the feast before they are insulted. So if you cannot hold your tongue for a few hours @SE_Wit, please leave."

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24 minutes ago, SE_Torol_Sadeas said:

"Can we just throw him out now, and be done with this idiocy?" Sadeas looked toward Gavilar.

I looked at Sadeas with a truly wounded expression. "Once again, you fail to see that I am not a King's Fool, nor a King's Idiot. If you throw me out and don't even bother to kill me, the king will be left witless! A man, especially a king, without a Wit could get in serious trouble. And if there is one thing we can agree on, my dear Sadeas, is how little we want Gavilar in trouble." 

Just now, SE_Gavilar_Kholin said:

When I had been convinced ro hire the man as my Wit, he had seemed far better at judging a mood. And at judging a person. Now he seemed rather base and drunk. "At least temporarily, for an hour or two until fewer people are sober. The people need to become comfortable with the feast before they are insulted. So if you cannot hold your tongue for a few hours @SE_Wit, please leave."

I stood in shock, my wit temporarily abandoning me. "My king, I would never get drunk when I'm working! And I haven't even made any jokes to Sadeas about his intellect. I've been deliberately holding back. But if you truly wish to be without Wit tonight, I shall oblige. Even if the aforementioned senses are telling me that tonight is a night where the King will certainly need his Wit."
Feeling slightly wounded- Gavilar had never acted so harsh with me before!- I wandered off to pursue some of the less important individuals. And indeed, something felt off to me. It was like a scent on the air, which was why I was so eloquent upon the odors of nobles this night. Noticing the curious young Parshendi again, I began to wonder how the parshendi would react to my Wit. Pleased with my idea, I headed off to make good on my name.  

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Truly,  the man did seem hurt, but tonight was not a night that I could afford to have fail. I wanted Meridas and Torol to be on their guard against sabitage, not distracted by my Wit. The man did leave though, perhaps genuinely abashed. "There we go," I murmmered to Torol, "hopefully Wit doesn't offend anyone enough to get killed."

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Ialai watched Wit leave, and smiled. He seemed to have not noticed her presence, and thus no Witlike comments about her would be made. 

“Finally. We can have some intelligent conversation.”

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“Thank you Gavilar, storms that man can be annoying. Any word on whether Jasnah is attending? I would like to make amends if possible.”

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Tearim tsked. Quite a busy night for the guard. Ha. Busy? Busy doesn't even begin to describe trying to secure a palace while two different nations, one not even human, meet? Not to mention the wine, the drunks, the shady looks... He sighed. It would be a long night indeed.

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6 minutes ago, SE_Meridas_Amaram said:

“Thank you Gavilar, storms that man can be annoying. Any word on whether Jasnah is attending? I would like to make amends if possible.”

"I know she intends to attend, but well, in light of her recent announcment, i am somewhat doubtful that amends are possible." And what a storming disapointment that was. He had tried to get Jasnah to see what a wonderful match Meridas would be, but she showed absolutely no interest. Extreme dislike even. "She's likely biding her time to make an entrance. Perhaps check the surrounding rooms for her? Or maybe ask Navani."

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“How are you doing after the announcement my king? That must have hit like a storm wall when you found out.”

Edited by SE_Meridas_Amaram
Wrong Kholin
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Liss, wearing the clothing of a serving woman, brings around glasses of wine to the nobility.  she double checks who is in the room, and what potential weapons they might have, before approaching.  She hesitates at the sight of Wit... She doesn't want to draw too much attention to herself, and he might create a spectacle.

Grabbing a new platter of drinks, she walks far around Wit, and continues towards King Gavilar and Amaram.

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1 hour ago, SE_Meridas_Amaram said:

“How are you doing after the announcement my king? That must have hit like a storm wall when you found out.”

I'll be having this conversation tens of tens of times tonight. But at least the first one will be with a friend. "Officially, I recognize Jasnah's right to make such a descion, especially as she has made it out of knowledge and study, rather than out of spite, or to get attention as some have claimed. I encourage her to recant and return to the church, but still love her just as much as before." I leaned in closer to Meridas, that none other might overhear. "Unofficially, I'm very annoyed. My daughter is shrewedly intelligent though, and disproves any argument I try to bring to bear against her. I just hope Elokhar and her cousins understand that what she says is Blasphemy."

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