The world was shrinking, somewhat. Nadia couldn't have told anyone about what was going on in the other parts of the tavern; the other patrons, the servers milling past, the clinking of glasses and tableware. She had her wine and her company, and nothing else required attention. Other than her sleeping houluh with an occasional pat, of course.
"I should be surprised if I ever found you boring, sir," She said, swirling the remainder of her drink in her glass. "I haven't met anyone quite like you before. The novelty certainly has not worn off yet, if you'd forgive the suggestion that it would..."
The words were slower and verging on running into one another, even if she hadn't quite lost her formal speech yet. A bottle's worth of alcohol was more than enough to push her past tipsy.
"Ah, you shouldn't tempt me. It has been... such a very long day."
The praise certainly doesn't fall on deaf ears, the knight giving an appreciative chuckle even as one hand goes to rub the back of the neck, obviously unaccustomed to it. "All is forgiven, there is no worry there. It is just.. I have been prior told that my manner doesn't always fit a party setting, if you would." (And true enough, the usually quite stuffy knight isn't exactly the centrepiece of a social gatherings. His role would be to intentionally blend into the back, to watch, observe, guard and only intervene where necessary. To ask him to be out of his element ironically seems to have made more easier conversation).
With no back of the chair to lean to, he instead leans on the elbow on the table, giving her an admiring look, flagon raised for a small toast, "But you, lady Nadia? I can say with some certainty you're quite unique to yourself as well. And I find it a good thing. The world has enough highborn ladies with disdain and haught in their eyes, who would not give my kind the time of the day. It needs more of the kindness and compassion, I say.."
To the topic of drink, there's no pushing as such, as he merely nods, "The decision is entirely yours. They do serve water as well, I should add, if you still feel a need for a drink, but don't wish for anything stronger. Worst comes to it, you may partake the remainder of the ale, should you wish." He's certainly had a share of it by now, but some still remains at the bottom of the bottle. (Not that he intended to leave it there. Seemed a shame to let it go to waste by this point, and it's a long walk home).
Ah, compliments. Nadia felt trapped under the weight of them, shy as she was; she stared down at the empty stew bowl with her cheeks flushed pink, unsure of what else to do with herself. Kind words from ladies were a struggle in themselves, but from men (who were barely permitted to speak to her in times gone by), they were new and daunting.
They warmed the spirit, though. It was not a feeling she wished to be rid of.
"Ah, thank you... though, do not heap the praise too high," She said, and leaned forwards with something of a conspiratorial smile. "I have been known to be haughty. Do be careful."
Perhaps he would catch her on a very bad day and bear witness to the evil highborn lady within. That remained to be seen - what was important was more drinks, and trying to keep herself composed under the influence of wine.
"Yes, water. A prudent idea." She wobbled in the direction of her hand when she raised a finger to hail a waiter.
There's a rough chuckle, the voice picking up a rasp from the ale, "My lady? Haughty?" Proper, certainly. Shy? Considerably so (As it doesn't seem like the wine's the only thing to rosy the cheeks). But also quite sly, at times bordering on teasing even. The knight joins the conspirational topic of discussion, leaning in, "I do believe that to be a lie.." keeping her gaze with a bemused, confident expression, before leaning back again. He has not experienced her barbs yet, and the playfulness has been largely intended to be back-and-forth, dancing on that fine line of propriety. Just enough to push it, but not so much to entirely cross it.
To be sure, the old saying of what hell hath none can ring true of any lady, highborn or otherwise, but there's being put into a difficult position and there's defaulting to a specific response. And the closed smile is certainly showing enough confidence that he believes her to be better than that with default responses.
Confident, too, is that instinct to raise a hand to brace her, should her own balances take her a little too far towards her own hand and thus off the chair, but it pauses half way. Seems everything is sorted for now, but given her condition, water is certainly the better alternative lest things get too out of.. well, hand.
Nadia was far more playful than anyone would believe. Under the restrictions of etiquette, she could seem aloof and detached, but she had a wicked streak beneath it - it had become more and more obvious as time went on, with her tendency to tease the knight. Never would she hope to bother him, but she did get a kick out of some of the baffled and amused looks she'd gotten thus far. The alcohol had softened her demeanour enough for her to laugh at his response.
"How rude of you to doubt me. Have I not been a most... truthful and gracious lady thus far?" Again, the impish smile, that was accidentally turned on the waiter that approached them. "Ah, hello! Could I request a jug of water, please?"
With a nod, the waiter scurried away, and it was just them and the candlelight once more.
"I would like to try some ale..." The bottle was taken up, and she poured some into her glass. In her bold mood, she was quick to take a sip... and then pull the mother of all disgusted faces. "Oh, goodness me..."
There is a part of the mind, somewhere in the way back, which quietly wishes to remind him that last comment might have been too much. Permission to be open given, but even permissions have limits (And some could be double-edged swords at that). But her smile didn't fade, the look didn't withdraw, and her laugh assures everything to be alright. And the voice fades a little further, with another sip of the flagon.
"Of course, of course.. It would indeed be foolish of me to presume. If my lady claims such, then surely it must be true," he replies with a bemused expression, bowing the head in abdication. "I merely wished to state that perhaps the evidence wasn't.. particularly apparent. But if you wish to reprimand or take your venom upon anyone within the tavern, then I shall of course offer my full support." It's framed as a jest, a witty comment to match her claim, as much is clear, but there's perhaps a strong hint still within to suggest he's looking to call her bluff on that too. After all, it was her own decree to put aside the rules of chivalry for their dinner, so it's only fair game.
He hands her the bottle, still having some left in the flagon to sate any remaining thirst (Though it's certainly seen sating already, a nice warmth in the stomach and a soft veil on the mind). A stranger sight than to watch someone drink ale from a wine glass he can't recall for some time (But it does oddly personify the whole of their current peculiar circumstances rather aptly). At her expression once the taste is had, he cannot but chuckle knowingly. "Quite the experience, isn't it? But it grows on you, and can certainly be cheaper than wine, though not always worth it."
Nadia was far too taken up by the taste of the ale to put any thought into a show of haughtiness. It would have been amusing to see her attempt to return to her highborn roots, at least - but the poor, unsuspecting patrons of the tavern would live to see another day without it, and would probably be better off for it.
"Sarv, it is an affront to my senses," She stated. That being said, she was quick to finish the glass, even though the flavour contorted her expression into something even more monstrous. "Ah, my stars! Your constitution... it must be great, to bear this. It may be too much for the delicacy of a lady's system."
Another teasing barb. The waiter was back in her periphery to deliver the jug of water, and she clapped with delight, both genuinely pleased by the speed of service and too far in her cups to think better of the display.
"I shall drink only wine. Ale is enough to make one haughty, even if you were not before..."
The bottle was pushed back across the table, to dwell safely on the knight's side.
He retrieves the bottle gladly, pouring out the remainder of the cheap drink into the flagon, before setting the empty shell aside. "Ale has been known to be more.. well, a 'common' man's drink as it were. Perhaps it merely affirms my station," and there's a short chuckle. "That said.. the common man's life does require a stronger manner of stomach and taste, by it's nature. It's certainly not for the faint of heart."
Not that the compliment goes unnoticed, he's just too assured of himself that it's true. They have been sitting for a while, and even though everything feels nice and fuzzy, he remains convinced standing wont be an issue what-so-ever. At all. By no means. (Alright, perhaps some means, but he's been in much worse states, and this was tame compared to that).
As he takes a drink of the flagon, in true knightly manner, her words gradually catch up to him, slow but steady. When the sip is finished, there's a momentary confusion as the logic follows and he leans towards her, puzzled, "Wait.. If I'm the one for ale.. and it makes one haughty.. Does that mean it is I who is the haughty one here?"
The water being poured was not going entirely into the provided cup. Nadia's hands hadn't been steady when they entered the tavern, on account of her being riddled with post-mansion anxiety, and they had only become more unstable with the wine. She tutted at the mess she'd created, and put the jug down to prevent further spillage.
All was forgotten with the mention of her logical misstep. Her brow furrowed - yes, it didn't make sense, did it...
"Perhaps you are haughty, sir. A secret flavour of haughty..." There was a wobble upon trying to pick up her sloppily filled cup, too. At least there was no more alcohol to be had. "Far be it from me to make a hasty judgement on your character."
A relentless tease, bolstered by her tipsiness. As if the poor knight didn't have enough to deal with after a long day. She took a sip of her water, but it would do little to mellow her out in a small quantity.
There is visible processing happening inside the knight's head, though the process doesn't seem to be exactly speedy. Whether from the ale, the long day, or simply just because the knight isn't perhaps the most philosophical of persons is anyone's guess (And that would be a trick question anyway - The answer is all the above). He leans back, staring at some point elsewhere in space, until seeming to arrive to a conclusion. "A secret flavour.. I shall have to think of this, as I have not considered the possibility of there being something unknown." Another pause follows, as he seems conflicted with the ale before him. Eventually, he pushes the flagon away with what little remains inside, "Though I would not wish to meet such style of myself."
Both of them have been having some cups of their respective beverages, and although he's certainly in a state of some inebriation, he none the less ends up noticing her struggles with the water jug and drinking the glass. The philosophical debate takes a backstage, as duty seems to ring true once more - he can hardly stand by when there's a chance the lady might do something to cause her embarrassment, only because they had perhaps one glass too many. (Especially since it had been his idea, of sorts. Stabs at secrets were fun, but not at such expense).
"Ah, I feel the day is starting to get late," he places hands on the table, the age-old indication of someone about to stand up and follow things up with something like, "The evenings here can get rather crowded, full of noise and clatter. They would not fit my lady's sensibilities, I'm sure. Perhaps it would be best if I escort you home?"
The tavern was, indeed, becoming more crowded. Though it was hardly rammed with patrons, it was noticeably busier than it had been when they had arrived, and the night being young meant that it was only likely to get worse. It hadn’t been a point of concern to Nadia with her full focus on her wine - but once attention was drawn to it, she pulled somewhat of a worried face.
“Now, Sarv, are you suggesting that I—“ The sentence was interrupted by a hiccup, and she pressed her hand briefly to her lips in embarrassment. “Pardon me. Are you suggesting that I… cannot handle rowdiness?”
The knight would’ve been spot on to say so. She drained the remainder of her cup of water, and made an attempt to stand up; there was more wobble than she would’ve liked, and her hips bumped into the lip of the table. Oh dear.
“Why am I sat so close to the…” A gesture to the offending object, even though her chair was a reasonable distance from it. “Foolish of me.”
"Oh, not at all, my lady," there's an apologetic wave at her call out. In truth, there can be a few things the lady might not be able to handle, and alcohol just seems the most pertinent one at this time. And more over, the explanation is absolutely an excuse to leave, since this tavern is hardly as seedy as some of the pubs more closer to the Docks, even at its most crowded. So the concern isn't so much damage to the person as damage to the reputation. But how to put it delicately..
"Rowdiness might be all well and good for a bit of fun, but surely just because one can doesn't mean one should?" As if to answer that question, the table thumps, with their various dishes briefly clattering in place. Hmm.. Things might be a bit more worse than he though.
The knight stands, not needing to steady himself as much (Though there's still a brief sway), and makes his way around the table to her side, "I merely suggested the evening is fine and the air outside much better than the stuffiness of this tavern." He extends the elbow to her, "Would you wish to walk with me to enjoy it?"
Yes, yes, quite. Nadia wasn't a great lover of the water in close proximity to her - walking next to it without railings to guard her steps made her itch - but she appreciated how calming the view could be, and believed sea air to be good for the body. A lungful could benefit her and bring her back down to earth.
"I would wish it..." No mention of her nearly forgetting her puppy (and hastily snatching up his leash to disguise her mistake). Once Dylan was in tow, she was content to take Sarv's elbow in both hands, and he'd no doubt feel the weight of her relying on him for support. It was her nature to do her best to hold herself up, but her tipsiness only allowed her finite capability. "And I would wish for... no more alcohol. And to be away from the table."
It had offended her greatly, and she gave it a dirty look to emphasise her point.
Ah, good! There is hope yet, although in full honesty the knight might have come to forget the pup under the table as well, had she not remembered. (A mistake that would have surely cost him much in her eyes). The elbow remains firm, to give her the balance she apparently so desperately needs. If they had a mount, the issue wouldn't be nearly so grave, as the mount could do most of the walking for them. As it stands, he might have to help her with hers.
He turns only long enough to leave some credits on the table, to cover the food, drink and the trouble of the water. "It is indeed a very inconsiderate table, my lady. It should have no place in getting in the way." The other hand places on hers and he asks simply, "Shall we?" as they step through the door.
The air outside is cooler than the heat of the day had been, and it's a welcome respite from the dank of the tavern. Not cold enough to sober, but fresh enough to drive away some of the drowsiness that oft comes with drinks and food. He sets the pace based on her ability to walk, mostly letting her take the lead and only helping her remain upright, though there's a subtle guidance more towards the house than any random direction. While it isn't dark out, yet, the streets are not the best circumstances for a tipsy lady to be on, so she'd most certainly be safest at home.
There's an inhale, and a sigh, as he comments idly, "The air outside feels quite a bit better."
Yes, quite. Nadia nodded along with the knight's condemnation of the table, and patted the arm she was clinging to with one hand. Very good. The moral support he was offering her was most important... second to the physical support, that was.
She was grateful for the fresh air, once they were outside in it. It wasn't instantly sobering (more's the pity), but a deep inhale helped with her swimming head, and the comparative quiet of the evening was a blessing to her overwhelmed senses. Her concentration had shifted to be focused on not stepping on her houluh as they went.
"Mm. Though I am... quite tired of the water," She declared, with a vague gesture in what she believed was the direction of the docks. "And of the mansion. In fact, I am... just quite tired. Are you tired, sir?"
A hearty meal and some wine was enough to do her in, it seemed.
Zenjesi: Hey Silv - how do you pronounce Kodakai?
Nov 17, 2023 18:23:56 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: Not to mention the baby mosca with wolf skin from Elvye and the sparkling owl of Xentus. <3
Nov 14, 2023 10:27:52 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: I like the Donnor one not just with looks FF, but the description, funny as heck.
Nov 14, 2023 10:26:27 GMT -6
Zenjesi: yours both made me laugh, FF! They're very expressive
Nov 13, 2023 21:57:46 GMT -6
Fiera Ferella: Woooow Twilight, I love that witch drawing!!! :0 It's so pretty! And Zenjesi I think Spectral is my favorite out of yours lol. Just looks happy to be included. and silver now i wanna know which pets youd pick for the other legendary beasts. XD
Nov 13, 2023 21:37:45 GMT -6
Silver: Ah I'm so glad you guys enjoyed it! I love everyone's drawings they're all so cute. ;o;
Nov 13, 2023 17:31:37 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: I like that one as well yeah, loved the old nootnoot image from quest prizes, so that one went perfectly with that particular costume being based around it. X3
Nov 13, 2023 15:23:13 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: The jewelry on tail or at the head definitely tends to be their most recognizable feature for a Mosca, and sadly their pharaoh chin piece as well. XD
Nov 13, 2023 15:21:07 GMT -6
Zenjesi: Your peanut costume is hilarious and adorable too!
Nov 13, 2023 15:14:29 GMT -6
Zenjesi: Yes you're correct! I guess I did a decent enough job with the drawing!
Nov 13, 2023 15:05:27 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: It still looks good on Synkka. She is a shaman Mosca I'm guessing? Its mostly the tail that makes me think of it.
Nov 13, 2023 15:00:42 GMT -6
Zenjesi: I definitely like Spectral's the most too! I sort of cheated by drawing Synkka with a cloak because I do not know how to draw feathered wings, haha ^^'
Nov 13, 2023 13:45:15 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: Which one do you like the most out of the three you made?
Nov 13, 2023 12:09:48 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: Thanks for that compliment! Though I know with the water it doesn't look entirely great, I love the latter one I made the most.
Nov 13, 2023 12:09:30 GMT -6