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  #16  
Old May 14th, 2014, 12:28 PM
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While everyone works to reassure the Baroness and offer their assistance should she want it, Ambrose discretely flashes Portia a flirtatious smile. During Quinn's discourse on her field of study, the nobleman only half listens, giving most of his attention over to the married woman at the table. Again, he slips his hand to rest on her upper leg, nearly scandalously high up now. 'The lady is taking the bait. I have only to wait for the right moment to set the hook and she will be mine.'

Ambrose withdraws his hand immediately at Portia's outburst, brought on by Fowler's clumsy handling of the food and howling of the hounds. The noble shoots the serving wench a dirty look before retreating to his own thoughts. '... I do not want Portia to associate anger or frustration with my touch. Ah, and I was so close as well...' The lecherous noble recalls to mind the looks Portia had directed his way. '... Yes, very close. But continuing the hunt while the prey is so spooked may forever make it wary... What is called for is fresh bait. And what better bait, if the lady is indeed interested, than envy?'

Waiting for the first moment where it would not be rude to do so, Ambrose turns and addresses the other woman present: his bait. "Lady Quinn, was it? M'lady, hearing you speak of your work- it is obvious that it is very dear to you. Your entire face appears to glow and the words that slip past your lips to our waiting ears are full of passion and excitement. I dare say, it is enough to awaken the slumbering intellectual in even one such as I. One wonders, would you be interested in speaking of it further? I am a man of means and walk in the social circles of many noble and wealthy men. Perhaps, together, we could work to secure patrons for your work?" Ambrose strategically times it so that he slips Quinn's hand into his own on the table only when the Baroness might see it. He smiles sweetly at Quinn for Portia's benefit. "-Oh, but where are my manners!" He turns his head to address the rest of the table, keeping an eye on Portia without being obvious. "My apologies to the others present. I am afraid that Lady Quinn's convictions swept me away from my better judgement in the excitement. This is of course the Baron's gathering. No more talk of business from me."

Ambrose turns again to Quinn, whispering quietly, his tone of voice suggesting seduction but not his words. "I do hope to speak more later, Quinn." He slides his hand away from Quinn's, his fingertips slowly tracing along her palm as he does so. But once free of her touch, he returns his attention to Portia. 'These damnable hounds and clumsy servants are certainly making my hunt difficult.'

'... I do so like a challenge.'
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  #17  
Old May 22nd, 2014, 04:12 PM
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Portia shot a venomous look at Fowler who withdrew, bowed to the Baron and disappeared with haste through the kitchen, her face a shade more pale than it had been. Collinsworth's eyes followed her, his scowl deepening into a great crevasse encircling his chin.

"Thank you, doctor. You are quite right, of course," Portia said. She smiled wanly and touched hand to breast as she attempted to compose herself. "Dear friends, please forgive my overreaction. One simply cannot find good help these days," she tittered lightly and looked around the table to see who else found her jest amusing.

"There will be no need for you to dirty your hands, your grace. Fowler will attend the beasts." The Baron's low voice bore the weight of command, but his look carried a warning. Under no circumstances did he want Brother Piabo accompanying the half-elven maid to check on the hounds.

"Indeed, not!" echoed the Baroness, indignant. "We have yet to even begin the main course!"

Outside, thunder crashed, rattling the walls of the ancient home and masking a falsetto cry of terror. The shriek outlasted the thunder's roar. "...Aaaaaah! No! Please?" The woman's voice pleaded only to be answered by an unearthly groan, "Uuuuaaaaaaggggggh!"

The Baron rose abruptly, his expression blank with shock, and together he and Collinsworth darted toward the door. Portia, also, found her feet. The Baroness trembled visibly. "P-please, my friends. W-wait here while we attend to this minor inconvenience."

Whisking out the door after her husband, the door swung shut behind her, immediately followed by the rattle of keys and the faint but distinct sound of a deadbolt turning in place. "We shan't be a moment," she reassured them through the locked door.

Without, a second wailing shriek followed by male voices and another, lower inarticulate howl. Only Collinsworth's voice carried clearly enough through the thick wood and stone of the ancient manse to be heard by those still within the dining room. "Stand back, Beatrix. You're only frightening him. I said STAND BACK, WOMAN!" His final words of warning were eclipsed by the the sound of shattering glass, the scuffling of feet and a tearful banshee-like wail.
 
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  #18  
Old May 31st, 2014, 08:30 AM
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Doctor Quinn Dobranoc
Quinn smiles at Portia's assurance, joining in her titter with a giggle of her own about the nature of hired help, even if the doctor seems to do so more out of obligation than personal feeling. But then, Ambrose turns his almost predatory gaze upon the widow, who regards him with a look both rapt and confused. Her mouth hangs open for a few moments until she becomes aware of her foolishness, overcompensating by pressing her lips thin as if pursing them, blinking rapidly as she forces a smile upon her face.
"You...you flatter me, sir, I hardly know what to say...!" The lady's words are set with a quiver, out of excitement or otherwise, but Quinn is obviously ensnared by the notion of a fellow intellectual going to such lengths to support her endeavours.
"Of course, I...I'd love to go over them at length with you...I feel you and I could work rather well together!" she chimes, a tinge of red coming to her cheeks, though whether it is the wine or of embarrassment it is hard to say.

And yet, the good doctor noticeably pales once more at the terrifying sounds from without, her eyes widened as she glances about for some form of security or manner of explanation.
"But...Portia!" She cries out as she lifts to her feet, following after to the door, eyeing the handle of the locked portal with some consternation. She retreats, circling around the table to stand behind Ambrose, a man who's partly offered her some form of protection. Perhaps to his detriment, in the end.
"I'm...sure everything is alright. I don't know...what those noises are." she mutters, adding with some anxiety, her voice a mere whisper. "...I don't think it's a dog." the woman squeaks, her eyes locked to the door as the shouts and yells continue.
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~Morrigan, the Witch of Blades

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  #19  
Old Jun 9th, 2014, 01:53 PM
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Ambrose merely smiles knowingly at Quinn when she expresses her belief that they would work well together. 'Oh, how right you are, Quinn. Portia will be mine yet, with your help- but whatever is that noise! These dogs are becoming a nuisance to be-' Before Ambrose can finish his thought, their hosts leave them alone in the dining hall, locking the door behind them.

Portia's reassurance that everything is fine, despite coming from the other side of a locked door, visibly relaxes Ambrose. After all, what else would be going on beyond a loose, precious family pet? Quinn, however, appears to be shaken.

"Of course everything is alright. And of course tis a dog. What else would it be?" 'Tut, tut. Quinn here is proving more susceptible to my charms than I thought. There's no thrill to seducing a lonely widow of course, but should it happen while I fan the lovely Portia's jealousy, so be it. A man should take what he gets after all. And if these damnable hounds continue to disrupt my conquest of the Baroness... Ah, improvisation.'

"My dear Quinn, you do look somewhat pale. Here." Ambrose stands and gently rests a hand on Quinn's shoulder while offering her her glass of alcohol. He peers at her face, expertly manipulating his countenance to feign concern. "Perhaps you should sit down for a moment. While this is my first time visiting the Baron's home, I would wager there's a sitting room past those doors." Ambrose indicates the eastern doors before turning his face back to Quinn, smiling what he hopes is a warm and inviting smile.

'A touch on her arm now, a brush against her upper leg as she sits in a soft chair... Widows are easy: lonely women longing for the touch of the man they once knew, willing to settle for a man that they do not, so long as he appears caring. Like hunting a deer in a closed room. ... The only variable will be if the priest follows after us, but I am sure I can find a moment alone with the lady to "tend to her"...' Ambrose's eyes wander to Quinn's lips for a moment, contemplating the possibilities before looking back up.
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Old Jun 19th, 2014, 03:49 PM
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Doctor Quinn Dobranoc
Ambrose's attempts to reassure the good doctor seem to have a mixed effect, the woman offering him a plaintive smile, yet still seeming somewhat jittery. His claims that the sound comes from a dog, however, draws an uneasy look.
"I s-suppose I haven't heard many dogs, but...but I don't...oh, heavens, thank you." She trails off as Ambrose passes her glass to her, and the lady takes a steady draught in an effort to calm her nerves, even if she is somewhat irritated at the thought of being inebriated when she's expected to speak at length of intellectual endeavours. But Ambrose is being so kind and supportive, it'd be wrong not to accept his hospitality, wouldn't it? 'Such a gentleman.'

The woman nods rapidly as he offers to take her to sit down, finding his smile as inviting as the man had apparently intended, briefly glancing the way of the priest before allowing her companion to guide her to a proper seat. Without much in the way of pretense, she gratefully sinks into the offered chair, gently placing her carry case at her side. The gentle touch against her leg elicits a sudden intake of breath, but she makes no comment on it either way, her eyes flicking up to Ambrose's as she sets her glass aside.
"I should probably refrain from drinking anymore, I...I fear I'm already making a fool of myself. I'm a touch out of...out of practice." She admits sheepishly, a coy smile on her lips as she notes the man's glances.

'Is he showing interest?' She wonders as she carefully maintains her expression, her face reddening slightly again despite her wishes, her mind churning with the possibilities. It has been so long since Thaddeus shed his mortal coil and left her alone and cold, and while Quinn has felt her interest in others stir from time to time, it is never something she thought to pursue - it had never felt right. But this man is offering her a chance, and in truth, any infatuation with her could only help her further her goals. It is a clinical way to view a potential relationship, but the good doctor is pragmatic, if not brimming over with morality.

"So...you are interested in my work?" The woman asks gently, somewhat unsure of herself, but she stumbles on regardless. "I think a man such as you would be more than capable of understanding the finer points...you seem to be a clever sort." She continues, doing her best to compliment the fellow, even if she feels somewhat awkward in doing so. Flattery never came naturally to her, but still she tries, and her words are not entirely untruthful - there is a certain gleam in Ambrose's eye that she finds difficult to ignore.
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"What'd I learn from my own kind? Spells, swordplay, and a disdain for the law and its keepers. From the humans? Alcoholism, how to pick a lock, and ways to use the common tongue to incite men into leaping upon my blade. It's been an exciting decade for me."
~Morrigan, the Witch of Blades

Last edited by Darkling; Jun 19th, 2014 at 03:50 PM.
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  #21  
Old Jun 24th, 2014, 02:34 PM
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The holy man watched their hosts leave with a hooded expression. As the door shut with the distinctive note of a closing lock, he harrumphed.

"Indeed. These . . . dogs of theirs, they seem quite, ah, voluble, no?" Hands locked in the small of his back, the monk strode around the room, kicking the skirts of his robe as he absently sipped from his wine glass. A slight flush had crept into his face, darkening the olive skin, and his eyes darted about the room, spearing the corners and niches as if expecting demons to jump out, gibbering, at any moment.

After a few laps, he strode back to the table, snatched up his staff, and speared the others with a glare.

"If you two are quite . . . finished for the moment, I fear something is afoot. Our dear hosts have locked that door, but there are others. I, for one, would like a look. This house grows yet more fascinating by the moment." Eyes lively, he stepped back towards the eastern door.

 
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Old Jun 26th, 2014, 02:13 PM
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The ruckus in the corridor concluded with one final, mournful moan and the closing of a door. Muffled voices, shuffling footsteps and more doors opening and closing could be heard faintly outside the dining room as the three guests milled about nervously within.

Giovani noted nothing out of place within the finely appointed, but otherwise mundane dining hall. The door leading to the hallway was clearly locked -- perhaps even jammed shut by some means by the way the wood of the door nestled against the frame -- but the eastern passage to the sitting room was very slightly ajar, as though the well-used latch had not quite caught on the jamb.

Approaching footsteps, not from the hallway, but through the kitchen, echoed clearly in the uneasy silence left by the cessation of conflict outside. The kitchen door swung wide and Collinsworth stood in the doorway. Standing to his full height, the imposing gentleman filled the entirety of the passage and announced solemnly, "The Lord and Lady beg your pardon while they attend to a small, private matter. They ask that you enjoy your meal without them for the nonce. Dessert will be along shortly."

Having made his announcement, he withdrew, the now-familiar sound of a bolt clicking into place following moments after the door swung shut.

 
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Old Jul 2nd, 2014, 02:47 PM
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"Out of practice of drinking?" Ambrose innocently leans in closer to Quinn, lowering his voice to a hushed whisper dripping with ambiguity. "... Or of something else?"

After a moment's hesitation, Ambrose draws back, chuckling as though he didn't see the possible second meaning his words could hold. "Ah, but tis the lady's prerogative. I understand that one must refrain from drinking to excess, especially in the company of their peers." A fleeting glance goes to Giovoni as the priest sips from his glass yet again, but ultimately Ambrose's attention remains on the doctor as he gently rests a hand on the woman's knee. 'More drink would make her seduction easier, but tis so much sweeter when the lady freely gives herself without the influence of alcohol.'

"Clever? Me? Oh, heavens no. But I do recognize an interesting area of study when I see it. And I must also say, you intrigue me, Doctor." Ambrose pauses, letting his words linger in the air long enough to grow and take on more meaning than they had when first said. And then he resumes, pretending as though the original meaning was all there ever was. "You appear to have made great strides in your studies, despite lacking resources."

Ambrose again pauses, this time to give the illusion that his words have overtaken his presence of mind. Continuing his charade, the noble widens his eyes, feigning embarrassment. "My- please forgive me. I did not mean to be so blunt about your situation. But it comes to this: I do believe your pursuit of knowledge is admirable. Perhaps we could spend more time beyond this dinner and discuss it further? Together?" Smiling his most charming smile, Ambrose almost imperceptibly slides his hand up from Quinn's knee. The movement itself might be overlooked consciously, but the meaning behind it would almost surely be subconsciously transmitted.

Giovani's words and glare momentarily break the spell of seduction that Ambrose has been weaving, causing the noble's countenance to darken. But within the span of a heartbeat, Ambrose's grin and pleasant demeanor return. He stands and addresses the bothersome holy man. "I dare say, if our hosts have left us to our own devices in their dining hall, what right does that give us to intrude upon their hospitality beyond that? I would hate to disappoint the Baron and his bride by not being here upon their return."

Collinsworth's timely arrival only strengthen's Ambrose's argument in his mind. "You see? Tis only a short absence from our hosts. I for one would do not wish to pass up the chance to sample what must truly be a fine dessert if it follows such a sumptuous meal." 'You arrogant, meddling, troublesome... Of all the guests to have been invited, why must the Baron have chosen a holy man with the nose of an untrained hound?!' "But, let us ask the lady what she wishes."

"My dear," Ambrose rests his hand delicately upon Quinn's shoulder, "What do you think? Should we stay here and wait for our hosts, or adjourn to the sitting room?"
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Old Jul 24th, 2014, 08:11 PM
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Doctor Quinn Dobranoc
The doctor smiles at the first of Ambrose's assertions, of being out of practice drinking, but his second question leaves her as confused as ever. She glances at him sidelong, trying to make sense of his playful manner, pretending not to notice as the man rests a hand upon her knee. Then he continues on, of course, claiming that he finds her intriguing. Truly, in her thoughts of finding a wealthy suitor to fall upon, she had pictured it being a far deal more difficult given her diminished status and lack of wealth or title. But now, with Ambrose practically fawning over her, it seems it might be a damn sight less difficult than she'd originally believed.

But then, the man honestly seems interested in her, and she finds it hard to respond in anything but a positive light.
"Of course, I'd love to discuss it as much as you'd like, I won't be able to shut up once you've got me started." She says with a smile, though then it seems that shortly after the two gentleman come to something of disagreement. The doctor's eyes flick between the two, still unsettled by the noises, and part of her wishes to agree with the priest. She opens her mouth to reply, but then the servant makes the will of the hosts known, and she finds herself withdrawing again.
"I...would be happy to take dessert in the sitting room, I think." She speaks quietly, not wishing to stir up a fuss with either of the men, but also wanting to appease Ambrose as best as she's able.
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"What'd I learn from my own kind? Spells, swordplay, and a disdain for the law and its keepers. From the humans? Alcoholism, how to pick a lock, and ways to use the common tongue to incite men into leaping upon my blade. It's been an exciting decade for me."
~Morrigan, the Witch of Blades
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