Fighting Our Reflections

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Pirogeth

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"These delicious delights should do perfectly for today. You two keep up the hard work but remember to rest when needed." David nodded his head and tipped his hat walking out with his order in hand. He pulled a piece of the bread out, a sort of wheat bread that looked slightly different. They added a few grains and crushed nuts to it that heightened the flavor of it overall and David just could not resist it. He was so caught up in his bread eating he did not notice the crowd dispersing in front of him as young women and little girl both nearly bumped into him. With what time he had to react David bumped into the older girl only with his shoulder. "I deeply apologize miss." He took notice of the young one a small stain of blood on her face and collar. "Looks like you need to get going...oh here take one of these." David offered some of his helping of bread to Lira before continuing on. "Should brighten up anyone's day. I must be off." Again he tilted his hat with his hand and left. He still had yet to get to his original destination. Near the river was an old hand built house. There his mother and father lived. Even though rather old they still cared for the people around them making medicines out of new discoveries and old home remedies. He knocked twice on the door and proceeded to open it without an answer. "Hello? It's your son! I brought some bread from the market!"
 
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Fluffy

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Candace followed Oliver into their bedroom so she too could get dressed. It would be pointless because sometime today, she'd be stripped of her attire to be fitted for her birthday dress. According to her maids, it was a surprise, but they promised she would love it. All she could really do is trust them.

She slipped out of her gown and pulled out one of her usual dressed of black and white. It wasn't just to match her unusual two toned hair; black and white symbolized something important to her. They were opposites, yet went great together. She smiled at that thought as she tied up the laces, her tail looping through the slit specially made for it.

"Today will be grand," she replied to her husband, making a confident smile. Aside from her birthday, it was about the time that the Dark Twins invaded those years ago. People were always more paranoid during this month. It saddened her to know this and she admitted, she was nervous about it as well. Candy never wanted to see the face of that dark abomination shaped to look like her, ever again.

One of her hands linked with his so he could lead her to their breakfast. She was going to enjoy a fine meal before they got to their duties for the day. She followed beside him, letting the aroma of fresh pastries and fruits guide them to the table. Candace's lady in waiting encouraged her to eat with haste, which she tried to ignore. That woman was always in a rush to get things done, and always so uptight.
 
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Maiihemm

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Ayah began to stir when she felt the soft touch of the morning sun on her face. Although she knew it was time for her to get moving, her body was telling her to stay put. The soft grass that she was curled up in danced around her being pushed by the wind. This field was comfortable for her. Relaxing almost.

"If only the sun would rise a little later in the day.." she whispered underneath her breathe.

She pulled herself up into a sitting position and pulled her long flowing white hair back out of her face. No matter what she did the night before, it was always in tangles by the morning light. Ayah pulled her bag of food over to her and placed her small blanket inside. She traveled most of the time so she carried only the few things she could fit into her bag. While her hand was in the bag, she pulled out a piece of dried meat and took a bite out of it. She hated the taste of the old food she had, but it would work for now.

Once she started walking, she could see the people of the kingdom she had been raised in moving in the hustle and bustle of the normal day. Although, this was no normal day. Today was the new Queen's birthday. That was why she chose to come back to her home again. It was time to face the demons that she couldn't seem to escape.
 
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Professor Crane

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Niko chuckled at Amaya's question. "Miss the party of the year?" Niko asked, "Not on my life. What about you?"

Niko took the silver from Amaya and put it in a small box under the counter. Looking back up he made on more comment, "Of course, since it is the queen's birthday, I've made a potion special for the occasion."
 
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Neko Archy

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Yukino met up with the king and queen as they sat down for breakfast. Part of his job was to keep the king and queen informed of what was going on in the world, and he took his job quite seriously.

"Lord, lady." He nodded to each in turn, but remained standing. "It will please you to know that there are no matters requiring your attention, at least in my spheres. The human kingdom is undergoing business as usual, and while their gossip is entertaining, none of the potentially important bits are true. As for our...other halves, they're being quiet. It looks like you'll be able to enjoy your birthday in peace, Milady."
 
T

The Raven's Song

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Amaya was not surprised by his answer "yes, im going im not sure if I'll enjoy it much though."

She shuffled her feet a little before looking back at him "Really? What does it do?" She asked him curiously, Niko's potions had always worked wonders and she was interested in just what it could do.
 
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Seiji

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The breakfast Oliver and Candace shared was indeed fit for royalty. There were several thinly-sliced slabs of salted pork laid out on top of one another, stacked and fanned out for easy serving, and another plate stacked with crispy-fried sausages; there were two full trays of a variety of fruits, both filled to the brim with either of their favourites (but mostly Candace's-- it was, after all, her birthday); there was another bowl of poached eggs covered in a cream-coloured sauce of some kind; another plate was covered in flaky, buttery biscuits and rolls, and another with identically-sized 'flat cakes', covered in a thick, sugary syrup.

The breakfast was meant to cover all of their varying tastes and needs for the day. Ollie enjoyed his salts and sweets.

"Good morning, Kino," Ollie greeted one of his chief advisers and old acquaintance with the old nick-name he made for him since their early years. He was in a fairly cheerful mood, so he wasn't too bothered at being interrupted his breakfast with his beautiful wife and Queen, his 'Candy'. "I'm glad to hear that things are in good order."

Generally, things had been, but the rumour mill was what it was. The humans were always surly, and hungry; they enjoyed their wars, and the 'prestige' their Lords attained when they made their victories. More than once, since becoming King, Ollie had been forced to parlay with the human King to make sure no hostilities arose between them. Once had been a border dispute, with a village sitting directly above the invisible line that divided the kingdoms. Another had been over a caravan raid, and whether it had been done by bandits, or drunken, bored King's soldiers. They almost came to blows over that one.

"I'm glad," he repeated, after chewing on a chunk of torn sausage he had ripped from his hands. While he was King, he was a Neko-jin, and had certain instincts he didn't enjoy fighting. Over a private breakfast, he felt he could enjoy the privilege of tearing away meat with his bare hands.

"If things are in order," he continued, "I'd like to post-pone, delay, or simply not bother attending any meetings that are scheduled today. It's my wife's birthday, for Heaven's sake!"
 
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Kitti

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Their work was finished and the shop was empty. For the latter, Ethan was a little bit regretful, it would have been nice to have a bit of extra money since this month would be cutting the budget close. The boys had gone above and beyond for the cake and the presents, while for the cake they had been paid and handsomely the presents were just that, gifts. They'd cut into the boys' time and cost considerable funds, as well as limiting the production of goods by monopolizing the ovens and their attention. Overall, it had not been a profitable month but Ethan was not sorry - the cake was marvelous, with gold leafing, decorated with the same purple doves on the magenta icing. The icing was sweet buttercream over the moist vanilla cake that they had prepared with all the love that they could muster for the queen and her king. This was their day to shine in her gratitude for their tireless work and they planned to make it an unforgettable cake for so big a birthday.

"Ethan, you look so serious. It's a happy day - or are you just thinking deeply?" Lex purred, nudging aside Ethan's arm with his thick, dark locks. Ethan couldn't help but smile and kiss his cheek, coying the delicate black ears with his fingers. Lex purred wordlessly now, his tail flicked back and forth to mirror this contentment. Ethan couldn't help but laugh now while he stroked Lex's furry ears.

"We're supposed to be running the shop, my little imp" Ethan whispered, nipping Lex's ear gently. Lex reached below Ethan's shirt and caressed the smooth young muscles of the chest, defined but not bulging and so artful. Ethan exhaled with a hiss. Before Lex could react, Ethan had pressed him back against the counter and pinned his arms over his head. Lex pressed against Ethan, his eyes glowing with mischief.

"Naughty, naughty imp" Ethan breathed, inclining his head to suck on his brother's lip. "Later, now. Be good." Ethan released Lex, glancing about to make sure there were no customers to see them.
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Blind Hemingway

A former executive or something.
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Justin was now armed with a rock. It wasn't just any sort of rock, it was a piece of granite. Apparently, it was a stone that could be used effectively on some kind of supernatural creature...Though in this time around, he just needed it in case he encountered the human males again. He figured that being able to climb a tree and drop it from several feet in the air and knocking one of the men unconscious was a good means of defense.

Justin looked left and right. There were no signs of the thugs anywhere, so Justin began whistling a hymn that he had learned from his grandmother. His tummy then began to growl. He guessed that after running for nearly a hour on end, that the blue gill that he had caught wasn't going to be enough. Now he couldn't go back to the river for awhile, so he was stuck going around looking for whatever he could find. There were always birds but they required too much brain power this early in the morning.

His nose then smelt something...Sniffing the air, Justin followed the wondrous smell to a bakery. He opened the door as quietly as possible. For being a clumsy boy, Justin was rather good at stalking. He needed to be as quick as possible to get the sweets he so deserved for gallantly avoiding capture!

There didn't see too many other people around, which was rather curious to him at first. But then he realized they were all probably busy getting ready for Princess Prettykitty's ball. Oh well, he thought to himself. It meant that he'd have an even easier time getting whatever was lowest to the ground.

Justin then placed the large rock on the floor and tossed a few loose buttons he had stolen from a sleeping hobo on the ground next to it. This was his way of paying for the food.

His original plan was to barge into the bakery and shout, "I WANT A CUPCAKE! I WILL TRADE YOU THIS ROCK FOR THAT CUPCAKE. Pleeeaaassse? PLZZZZZ!"

However, since no one was around, he wouldn't have to worry about that. He grinned to himself when he saw two muffins sitting in basket nearest to the entrance way. They were probably just for display but that didn't matter to him. Justin then picked them up and put them near to his chest.

"Heheheh. Boobies." He said with a dumb grin on his face.

He then heard someone say, "Naughty, naughty imp."

At first he was going to say "Hoshit! Where is it? I'll kick it's ass!" However, he soon realized that it was coming from somewhere near him. So being the curious young man he was, Justin decided to see what was up. He then saw two young men that seemed to be hitting on each other. These clearly weren't the twin skinny dippers he was looking for!

"EWWWWW!" Justin gasped when he saw the two males kissing....

And with that, he bolted out of the shop with both muffins in hand.
 
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Neko Archy

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Yukino blushed a bit at his nickname, glancing off to the side. "Well sir, that's all I can say for my duties..." why did he have to use his nickname, anyways...

He turned his attention back to the king and kept talking.
"There might still be meetings with the quartermaster, or your man-at-arms, or any number of the staff to make sure tonight goes off without a hitch. But yes, the foreign ministers can wait for today. Just remember to pick up your gift and you'll be fine."
 
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Xindaris

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The blacksmith wasn't happy about the party. Lupe woke to hear him grumbling not long before the sun rose, and got an earful of the grizzled old fellow's usual complaints alongside breakfast. If most of the kingdom's Neko-jin were like housecats, he was like an old lion. This party was frivolous, he said, wasted resources they would need if the town was under siege. Not that the dark halves were known for sieges, mind you.

He recited what he'd done to his own dark half. He'd not slept that night, intent on working through dawn at the time, and he'd bludgeoned his assailant into a bloody mess with a smithing hammer before even noticing the resemblance. It was dark, you see, no light but from the fires.

Lupe smiled amicably and listened to him, appreciating the growl of the smith's voice as a noble might a cantata. While the smith wouldn't be attending the ball at all tonight, he would be making a gift, and Lupe, who intended on going anyway, would present it. With that he went to start the fires, and begin work for the day. Lupe went to the storefront and unlocked the door. Customers were unexpected, but it was still his job after all. He had rented some finery a few days ago in preparation, and the smith had put some temporary decorations on his twin swords' sheathes to match it, insisting he take them to even an event as peaceful as this.

For his own part, the wolf-man was thankful to the monarchs. It was they who had approved his citizenship here, after all. The smith's opinion was that revenge should have been exacted on the enemy kingdom as soon as possible, but Lupe had seen enough war and death in his days to dislike it. Neither had he lost anyone he knew to the first attack, not being present at the time, so there was that.
 
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Kitti

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Ethan and Lex parted from one another, flicking a rather vexed gaze to one another before Ethan popped his fingers. Lex frowned a little and looked out the shop door.

"I think that the brat just stole goods..."

Ethan and Lex made their way simultaneously to the door. In a flash, limber and lithe forms had darted around the sides of the little boy and were boxing him in from the left and the right, matching his pace and gradually pulling closer to one another. Lex was grateful that he had not changed yet into his fine outfit for the night with the sweat dribbling down his back from the heat and the running, as well as the dirt that they were kicking about.

In a fluid movement as they got within arm's reach, Ethan plucked the boy up from the ground by the collar at the back of his attire. He held him out, flailing, like a little clawed kitten and watched with bemusement for a moment while Lex retrieved the muffins.

"Where's your mother, brat?" Ethan asked blandly.
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Professor Crane

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Niko gave a small chuckle at Amaya's question. "Now that wouldn't be fair. If I tell you it would ruin the surprise." Niko then pulled out some notes and began to look over them.

"If you would excuse me now, I have some things to look over before tonight, and I don't know how busy the rest of the day will be." He then proceeded to head through the door back to his lab.
 
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Fluffy

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8:00 PM: Cue the Ball!

The castle's ballroom glowed with impressive displays of candle lights, flowers, food and drinks. In a corner, a group of men and women dressed fancily warmed up the environment with their music. Stringed instruments created a soothing setting for the time being, so the louder instrumentalists waited patiently beside a table of refreshments, talking amongst themselves. Slowly but surely, Neko-jin flowed into the setting, either to take a seat at a table to dine, dance or simply enjoy a conversation.

A pair of chairs sat close together at the opposite end of the entrance, where the King and Queen sat. This was a party for the lovely Queen, but she still sat quietly to watched her guests flood the room. It was advised that she stay put so nobody would have to seek her out to wish her a happy birthday.

Candy was tapping the fingers of her left hand on an arm chair, the other hand combing through her hair of black and white. They were gestures she often did when she was bored or deep in thought. The most likely factor was that she was, indeed, bored. Sitting in this chair with perfect posture was no fun at all. Although the music was gentle, it still made her want to dance. Still, she masked her face with happiness to not seem so rude to the guests, or her husband.

Both eyes flicked back and forth, as well as up and down. She looked from person to person as Nekos toured the ballroom, set presents on the gift table, grabbed a bite to eat... Everything was orderly and fun already for the others. This observation began to relax her, the quick finger tapping slowing down. Even the paranoia of her party being crashed went to rest. Unfortunately for Candace, her birthday was the anniversary of the Dark Twin attack. If birthday wishes truly did come true, those vial creatures would be gone by now! The hand combing her hair settled on her stomach, that being a habit she developed ever since learning she was pregnant.

'I wish I could have parties for them every night,' she thought to herself, tilting her head. With every year, her people got stronger as they recovered from that dreadful attack. Wounds like that took so long to heal, though. Celebrations like this one made it easy to forget those dark days...
 
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Kitti

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"Ethan, someone is going to seeeeeeee" moaned Lex as he squirmed out of Ethan's grip. Ethan had pressed him against the wall of the ballroom and was busily kissing Lex's jawline until Lex wriggled away. Ethan chuckled, his spirits bright with the candlelight. The boxes the two were toting swayed unsteadily in their hands as Lex darted from Ethan and Ethan gave chase. Before Ethan could catch Lex, the golden twin had made his way to the table stacked high with presents from the queen's loving citizens. It wouldn't seem right for the bakers' presents to be separated - how confusing!

Ethan considered the boxes for a moment and pulled, as if by magic, a length of ribbon from his pocket. More sections of ribbon followed and he bound the beautiful boxes together in groups of five with them before setting them on the table, in order to at least indicate that they were all of the same giver. It was far more gratifying to see the beautiful box with their cake concealed inside sitting up on the high, beautiful table. It made a swell of pride grow in the chest of both boys and they looked skyward briefly as if to plead their parents to look down with pleasure on this honor.

The reverence of the boys did not last long as, without skipping a beat, Ethan's hand cupped around Lex's butt. Lex leapt into the air and shot a glance at Ethan, a grin half of embarrassment and half of desire. Ethan winked at him but with people staring, the twins linked arms and glided gracefully to the table of refreshments.
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M

Makene

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Schuyler sighed and trudged along the street, clutching her outfit in its bag in her arms. She looked around quickly and skipped to the side, avoiding the Nekos rushing past, heavily laden with boxes which were obviously for the ball to celebrate the Queen's birthday. She clattered in through her door and dropped the dress on her bed as an unfinished painting caught her eye. Not bothering to even think about geeting ready for the ball, she sat down at the easel, grabbed a clean paintbrush and started to paint.
 
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Seiji

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Ollie found himself fingering the solid leather patch that covered his missing eye. He kept catching himself, and with a silent curse would physically drag his own hand away with the other. He couldn't let Candy see him doing that--it was a physical sign, a tell, that was showing how much he remembered that fateful birthday of hers, those handful of years ago.


Those Dark Reflections. That was the most apt description of them; twisted, malicious versions of themselves, from that reflecting pool below the castle and city. Opposites in every way, they decided, for whatever reason, that
this version of themselves, this alternate reality, could no longer exist. So they decided to wage war on them; more of a genocide, really.

But the Nekojin of this kingdom was not easy meat.


Ollie had lost his eye in that fight, and so had his dark version. Many others had lost life, and limb. It was a terrible anniversary, causing most everyone to reflect on the past on a day that should have been glorious, triumphant, and celebratory. His wife's birthday.


It was just one of the reasons they celebrated it so publicly, and flambouyantly. They wanted people to see the day
as her birthday, not some dark holiday.

Physically trying to shake away his own dark thoughts, Ollie shook his head, his long auburn locks tussling down past around his face in perfect curls and locks. He had insisted his hair be done up and well-worked; Candy liked that.


Standing, he addressed the party-comers. "I hope you're all enjoying yourselves, on the eve of my wife, your Queen's, glorious birthday!" His voice was loud, bassy and sonourous. It was a voice that demanded attention, but he wasn't trying to rouse an army. He had a smile on his face, and his tone of voice was appropriate for the occasion: he was cheerful, and genuinely showing happyness.


"Please, have your fill of the wine and merriment! Have at the food, take some home if you so wish!" He grinned toothily at that, showing his fangs. It was improper for
anyone to take home left-overs. "And please, wish my wife her birthday tidings. And I hope you've brought her lovely gifts." He gave them all what he thought a wink, but with that one eye, it was probably lost on them.

Turning back to the Queen, who still sat, he asked her: "Will you dance with me, my beautiful wife?" His voice was soft, for her ears only, and filled with the affection he gave only to her.
 

Blind Hemingway

A former executive or something.
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Preferred Character Gender
Primarily Prefer Female
Genres
Surrealism, Surreal Horror (Think Tim Burton), Steampunk, Sci-Fi Fantasy, Spaghetti Westerns, Mercenaries, Dieselpunk, Cyberpunk, Historical fantasies
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Justin blinked as he watched the two brothers grabbed the wrong young boy that just entered their establishment.

"Man, that was creepy. It reminded me of the time...Oh wait, I never seen anything like that before. FFFFFF-"

If there was one thing that he excelled at, it was the art of quick escapes. He had bolted to the right and then climbed up the nearest gutter and climbed it to the roof. There he sat and decided to wait a hour or two before going off on another misadventure...

He watched as the young kid was struggling as the two brothers began questioning him.

"Poor chap. Oh well, I got my muffins."

Several Hours Later....

It was now nightfall and Justin had still yet to go back home. Instead, he spent most of his day focused on reading up on what the weird brothers he saw at the shop were. He was pretty sure that they were monsters of some sort; after he had never seen brothers being that close before. Something was just bothersome about them. They were probably changelings!

Justin was camping out at another spot that he often used as a base, a run down building that once belonged to humans but was now falling into disrepair. He had a small fire burning in a lantern, giving off the only light in the entire shop. Justin decided that it was his duty to stop these monsters from doing anything to disrupt the flow of daily life in the Neko community and therefore, he would have to declare war. Pulling out a small can of ink that he had stolen from his grandmother, he made two straight lines under his eyes. This was his scary warpainted face. He read that humans did this often and that it made them intimidating. Next he placed a metal pan on his head; once again, he knew that humans wore helmets into battles against things like dragons for protection. He couldn't find anything that was even remotely like a sword, so he was armed with a long metal spoon. His shield was a wooden lid to a garbage can just down the streets a way.

Justin figured that they probably would be headed towards the Queen's party, it was something that the locals hadn't shut up about for days. He had never attempted to actually sneak into the castle, but there was a first time for everything. He made his out of the camp and down the roads as quietly as possible. Of course, carrying all this protection didn't exactly allow for him to do so....

After wandering around for about a hour he finally reached the castle. There were several guards out this time of night and many guests were coming for the ball. He looked left and right, while he probably could have easily just walked in through the main gates, Justin decided that the windows nearest to the enterence where his best bet. Waiting in a bush, he watched as the guards walked by in formation.

"Now's my chance!"

He quickly jumped out of the bush and on to the ledge of the opened window. With a smile on his face, he climbed in. Justin was now in one of the hallways of the palace. He then slipped his "shield" off his back and unsheathed his battle spoon from the flour sack he had stored it in. It was now or never. He would find the monsters and defeat them in glorious battle!

Justin then did his best roar, which was rather squeaky and charged into the main room. With his ever fast speed he was now on one of the tables and staring at each of the guests, trying to figure out which one of them were the monsters....
 
X

Xindaris

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Lupe was enjoying the party well enough. He would have been a few minutes late if he hadn't kept himself fit; the smith had taken to the last possible moment to finish the gift he was making for the queen: An elegant but sharp and well-pointed rapier. The wolf-man was well aware that a weapon wasn't an appropriate present for the occasion, but after all, he was only acting on behalf of his employer. Besides that, it was a beautifully crafted blade. The smith, despite his grumbling, had shown respect enough toward the queen in the time and effort he put into it.

Lupe had sprinted halfway across town with the weapon in its long, thin box, and his own twin swords at his sides, so after putting the gift down with the others he had to take a minute or two to lean against the wall and slow his breathing. He was up against a wall not far from the entrance when some white-haired kid squeaked and jumped on top of a table, holding a spoon like he was planning to hit someone with it.

"Hey, kid. What're you up to?" he asked, leaning forward so he was standing upright again, and looking the little guy in the eyes.
 
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Makene

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Schuyler stumbled into the room and brethed a sigh of relief as she set the heavy awkward-sized present on the table. She glanced quickly about but seeing no one she knew or wanted to talk to she stayed put, watching the other guests. A white-haired kid suddenly came charging in the room and her eyes widened as she wandered waht was going on. She watched closely as the man leaned closer to the kid and she could only just make out his words.
Then to her utter surprise she giggled at the sight of the kid with his makeshift hat and shield with his painted face and his little wooden spoon.