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    Bonded Alloys

    Vandrad Ragnos
    Vandrad Ragnos

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Traveller of the Multiverse
    Position : None
    Posts : 435
    Guild : Fairy Tail
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 226,484

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Energy Monarch
    Second Magic: Ark of the Dread Masters
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Bonded Alloys

    Post by Vandrad Ragnos 2nd April 2020, 11:30 am

    There’s no fair or unfair in battle.
    ( There is only victory or in your case, defeat. )
    Bonded Alloys RJtajUnz_o


    It had been a long night and Vandrad was wiped. In truth, he was not a person that stayed up extraordinarily late -- he was far more of a morning person than he was a night owl. He enjoyed the occasional late night but those usually involved training sessions of extreme measure or taking part on a job. Staying out beyond his bedtime and partying? Now that was a complete stranger to the Prince of Bellum. Yet here he was, dragging his ass out of the club beneath his family’s estate at one in the morning. He was still running fairly high in energy for the moment but he could feel the lingering effects of the late night below the adrenaline. Once he hit the sheets, he was going to be out.

    The issue of Mercury’s sleeping arrangements came up again, of course. Most people hadn’t taken his statement at the end of the actual ball as a serious one. Simon and Themesycia had, once again, attempted to woo her into their beds to spend the night. Several other patrons even offered their beddings for her, giving her the due and perverse respect that the Naughty Queen deserved. But still, the Prince had stoically told them all that the only person she was spending the night with was him. Mercury certainly understood that he meant she would simply be staying in his room -- nothing illicit would happen -- but that didn’t stop all the teasing raining down upon him.

    Nevertheless, he waded through it. As he reached up to set the painting back to its normal state, he glanced over at Mercury, still dressed in the very sheer outfit. "I hope you enjoyed yourself,” he told her. While normally he said such things in almost bitter irony, it seemed he was quite genuine in that moment. After their few surprising moments of emotional and open clarity, he did sincerely want her to have a good time for the rest of the evening. What better way than to make her the center of attention? The barest hints of a real smile played upon the edges of his mouth before he forced it to become more of a smirk. "Remind me never to challenge your willingness to put on a show with a pole.”

    She had put on quite the showcase. Without missing a beat, the Silver Wolf mage had removed her clothes as required, delivering a full effort for the sake of the crowd. Then she had approached him and given him quite the reason to regret -- or not -- staying in the room and on the couch. By the end of it all, it was quite clear that she had won out on the challenge and she had received a standing ovation for it all. The rest of the evening, she had received the due diligence from the rest of the attendees as it was set down. And for her part, it seemed that Mercury was quite enjoying the attention.

    As the picture faded back into a viable object, he turned and started heading back down the way they had come, so many hours ago. "Before you ask, yes I still plan on sleeping in my own bed. The mattress is a double king so we shouldn’t have any problem with being anywhere near one another. And at this point, it seems asinine to be bothered with one another’s nudity so…” he trailed off as he explained. He generally slept in the buff so unless she stated otherwise, he planned on sleeping in that same regard.








    Words: 602 / 602 | Tag: @Mercury Arseneault | © marzia at shine & gs.


    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 376
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 51,297

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 2nd April 2020, 12:26 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    Boy, it had been a night.

    Mercury had been to a few social gatherings in her lifetime, but nothing that she would have ever considered a party, let alone one of this caliber. Vandrad’s little stunt had earned him even more of her respect, but she had also done everything in her power to make it backfire on him. And by the way he had clearly enjoyed her performance, Mercury liked to think she’d been pretty successful on that font. Her title as Naughty Queen, and the endowments that came along with it, had been well earned. She’d spent the rest of the night being treated as the object of everyone’s focus, with complete strangers coming up and giving her a smack on the ass, among many other things.

    Thankfully, Mercury was comfortable enough in the environment with Vandrad and the rest of his family around that she thoroughly enjoyed it and wasn’t thrown off by any of it. But all good things came to an end, and eventually the two of them were much too tired to continue with the party. It was already much later than Vandrad himself usually stayed up, and while Mercury was still typically awake at this hour she was technically operating on two hours less sleep than her companion… not that he was aware of that, of course. Her little liaison with Themesycia and Simon would forever remain a secret between the three of them -- and Everance and Dudley of course. So it stood to reason that she was also more than ready to collapse into sleep, fighting to keep enough energy to at least try to take a shower before reaching that point.

    As the two of them left the club and returned to the main part of the palace, Vandrad closed the painting behind them and gave a rather serious inquiry as to whether or not she’d had a good time. Mercury smiled at him. “I did, actually,” she told him honestly. “I’ve never been to a gathering like that before. It was exciting. Thanks for bringing me along.” The otherwise genuine moment was quickly derailed by Vandrad, who gave her a smirk and admitted in not so many words that she had definitely managed to turn the tides on him with his trick. Mercury grinned openly at him. “At this point I’d think you’d have realized how willing I am to steer into most curves. But hey, I’m not going to complain if you want to keep giving me excuses to be a pain in your ass.”

    They started walking back the direction they’d originally come back after the original gala had ended, Mercury’s sheer attire swishing with every step as she walked beside the prince. He voiced up in a humorous tone to inform her that he didn’t intent on taking a couch just because she was going to be staying in his room. Apparently, his bed was a double king in size meaning there was more than enough room for two people to sleep in it without it being awkward or intimate, touching on the stupidity it would be to be weird about something like that after the rest of their history so far.

    “A double king? Mercury asked, giving him an incredulous and amused look. “That’s an obscenely large bed. I’m pretty sure my whole suite in Silver Wolf is smaller than that. What does one person even do with all that bed space?” She laughed, clearly looking forward to seeing just how large a bed of that description looked in person. Then, she shrugged. “Alright, killer. It’s your room, and not exactly any sweat off of my back. Just means you’re less likely to feel me move and wake up when I sneak out to go hop in bed with your mother.”

    Her grin spread wider as she flashed it at him, clearly teasing the man like he was going to have to stay awake all night to make sure she stayed put. Yawning, she stretched her arms over her head. “Speaking of sweat, I don’t suppose there’s a spot I can take a quick shower? Being the Naughty Queen was fun and all, but I feel like I’m coated head to toe in a thin layer of the stuff, and given how many people were touching me throughout the night I’m not entirely sure most of it is mine.” Actually, Mercury knew that a good portion of it wasn’t hers. There had only been so much cleaning off she could do after sleeping with the duchess and duke before returning to the party, and the last thing she wanted to do was sleep in Vandrad’s bed smelling like a mixture of the three of them, as well as the dozens of other people that had gotten handsy with her that night.

    WORDS: 835/835 | @Vandrad Ragnos
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Vandrad Ragnos
    Vandrad Ragnos

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Traveller of the Multiverse
    Position : None
    Posts : 435
    Guild : Fairy Tail
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 226,484

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Energy Monarch
    Second Magic: Ark of the Dread Masters
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Vandrad Ragnos 2nd April 2020, 6:27 pm

    There’s no fair or unfair in battle.
    ( There is only victory or in your case, defeat. )
    Bonded Alloys RJtajUnz_o

    "Well, I’m glad,” he said simply as she admitted she had enjoyed herself. Vandrad did his best not to make a big deal out of it, despite the fact that they both knew it was. As he’d stated to her, he didn’t ever go out of his way to participate in the events of the underground club. The perverse nature was enough to make him scoff and turn his attention elsewhere. But she had come all the way here -- despite doing so with the intent of teasing him -- and after everything that had happened, it seemed only appropriate that she get the full experience. His mother had said as much and, as much as he would never admit it, he agreed. Plus there was the added fact that he knew she would enjoy the club and all of it’s… quirks.

    Vandrad was first to admit that she had bested him in his own challenge and she couldn’t help the smug grin that plastered itself to her face. She teased him, surprised that he hadn’t figured out that she would lean into most situations, curves or not. She also said she wouldn’t complain if he kept giving her reasons and opportunities to be a thorn in his side. He snorted in amusement, crossing his arms over his chest as they walked along. "Like you need an excuse. You could turn most situations into a reason to needle me,” he said with a humorous glint, giving her a side eye and a quick smirk. He knew all this and yet, he still had decided to meet her head on when it came to the room and the pole. Against his better nature and judgement, he had sat himself down like a paying client and simply let her do her thing. This was despite his knowing that no matter what, she had the advantage. That wasn’t how he was going to embarrass her yet still he went through with it. It was odd and unexplainable. He didn’t really know why so instead of lingering on the subject, he stuffed it back down deep. Clearly it was because of the challenge. Obviously.

    Mercury was quite surprised at the size of his bed, stating that the entirety of her suite in Silver Wolf was probably smaller than the mattress itself. He snorted. "My mother goes extravagant everywhere, even in rooms she doesn’t plan on living in. When I objected to the size, she explained that it was not for my sake. She said, and these are her words, ‘its for the harem I’m sure you will amass someday’. As if I had any interest in such a thing,” he scoffed as he explained. His mother had the same size bed -- the only difference was that she found ways to use it to her full advantage. He simply used it for rest.

    She teased him about the size and how it would grant her the ability to sneak out and get in bed with his mother. "Tsk,” he scoffed, rolling his eyes. "Good luck. I’m a light sleeper and I’m quite aware of things moving about even when resting. You wouldn’t even make it two steps before I would be up and power slamming you back onto the mattress,” he said confidently, smirking at his own humor. The mild imaginative image in his head of actually performing the feat on her created… a strange feeling. One he couldn’t describe. He physically shook his head and glanced over at her. “Of course, I could always find some chains and strap you to the bed if you’re going to be impish about it.” Yet another strange sensation. He was simply joking; why the weird feelings?

    Luckily, she mostly seemed to be joking. With a yawn and a stretch, she asked him if there was a shower in the room so she could rinse off. Apparently being the object of everyone’s physical attention had made her feel quite grimy, which was understandable. All those sweaty people grabbing at her probably felt a bit odd on the skin. He nodded. "There’s a fully operational shower in my chambers. You’re welcome to it.” As if he had planned it, he stopped in front of a door just as he spoke of it. "Here we are,” he said as he pushed open the wooden doors and entered the room.

    The design of the room was similar to the ballroom; a clear, vibrant quartz made up the entirety of the chamber’s walls, ceiling and floor. It stretched up towards the roof and ended in jagged points all at the same level. Lights surged to life within the crystal barrier as they entered, illuminating the entirety of the room. The first thing she would probably notice was how the floor wasn’t altogether on the same level. It was split between four differing heights; the first one that acted as a platform for the entry area of the room, the one on the left that held a desk, a clothing bureau and a door that led to a walk in closet, the one on the right that had a small bookcase filled with tomes and another door leading to a bathroom. The tallest level was where the bed sat, nearly taking up the entirety of the platform save for a small area to walk around its sides, front and back. It was an easy step to get to each new level, with the edges rounded off so no one accidently cut themselves open.

    "Bathroom is through there,” he said, pointing to the right-most door. When she entered, she would find a rather large room serving as a washroom. A toilet sat just on the inside of the doorway, fixed with a toilet holder against the crystal wall. A sink and mirror were set against the left wall, along with a towel rack. The entire back wall of the bathroom was a shower and bath, a near three foot lip rising out of the crystal to keep in the water when one needed a bath. The tub/standing area itself could easily fit four to five people, should there ever be a need for that many. And the ceiling had six metal panels that, when turned on, would spray an even fall of water similar to rain. The knob was embedded into the crystal wall, along with several smaller knobs to adjust the settings and pressure. A small lip on the left side held soap for cleaning.

    By the time that she would finish her shower and come back into the main room, her bag would be resting next to the door. Vandrad was on the second level near the bed, rounding out his evening work out. He finished pumping his push ups and flipped over nearly in one swift motion, lying on his back and beginning his last set of sit ups. He wasn’t working hard enough to sweat but definitely enough to make his muscles bulge just a bit more than usual. He glanced over at her briefly between lifts before continuing. "Do you have any nightly routines?” It was a strange question to ask but then again, Vandrad asking any questions about her was odd as it was. He was comfortable leaving her to her privacy unless she provided a reason for an inquiry or she supplied information herself. But considering everything that had transpired between them that night, he felt… comfortable asking about some of her practices. If only to see how comfortable she was answering them.








    Words: 1289 / 1891 | Tag: @Mercury Arseneault | © marzia at shine & gs.


    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 376
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 51,297

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 2nd April 2020, 8:53 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    She grinned at his assessment of her ability to turn situations against him at the drop of a hat. “It’s part of my charm,” Mercury teased playfully.

    Her comments about the size of his bed earned her a snort from the prince, who went on to explain that the room had been designed by his mother, as presumably every room in the palace had. According to Vandrad, his mother had given him a bed that large in the hopes that it would give him enough room to have a number of ladies accompanying him in it. Or, in the words of the duchess, a ‘harem’. Mercury chuckled merrily at that. “Aww, why not? You don’t want a slew of ladies clamoring to you for warmth? We can call back the line of women wanting to dance with you, I’m sure they’d all be interested.” She shot him a cheeky grin.

    When she teased about using all the extra space to secure herself a way to sneak out and visit his mother in the middle of the night, Vandrad rolled his eyes at her, much to her pleasure. He told her that he was a light sleeper, and that there was no way that she would be able to get more than a couple steps before he’d be up and roughly tossing her back onto the bed. She chuckled, only for him to go on to say that he could probably get his hands on some chains to strap her down and supposedly ensure that she couldn’t make good on any of her impish inclinations. “Ooooh,” Mercury cooed with interest. “Are you trying to make it sound unappealing? Cause now I just want to try it more. Don’t go making threats you can’t keep… or do. I would be quite delighted to turn that particular scenario against you. Again.”

    Chains certainly had a history between the two of them, and she was more than willing to throw callbacks to it. The last time he’d strapped her up, there hadn’t exactly been any complains from her about it. Hell, she’d been the one to give him the green light. Not to mention the fact that Mercury wasn’t entirely sure if Vandrad had put together the nature of her magic or not, yet. She didn’t claim to be an expert on slayers, despite being one herself, but she did know that a tell tale sign was being able to eat the elements one was associated with. Vandrad had witness her consume lightning from the sea serpent, so unless there were other types of magic that granted similar feats he had probably surmised that she had some slayer abilities, at least with lightning. If he put her in chains, she’d just slip out of them one way or another without issue, even eating them if she had to like she’d done in the Glaciers.

    It wasn’t long after he’d confirmed that he had his own personal bathroom she could use to shower that they arrived at the room, and what a room it was. Like the ballroom, the entire space was fabricated out of quartz from floor to ceiling. It ran in various stages of space that each served a purpose and had its own level with the space for the actual bed being up at the top. Mercury stopped just past the doorway, clearly in awe of, if not a little intimidated by, the size and splendor of the place. “Damn…” she said quietly, in genuine shock. The room was big enough to be a whole house, with a dressing area, a study spot, a private place to bathe, and a bed larger than any one person could ever need.

    For the second time that night, Mercury felt a bit out of place -- though admittedly it wasn’t nearly as much as when she’d first put on the dress his mother had let her borrow, and then given her. After all, the room wasn’t hers, she was just being allowed the use of it for the night. Still, for all its simplicity in furnishings it was far more grand and extravagant than anything else she’d ever stayed in, or even visited. He pointed her toward the bathroom, shaking her from her inner uncertainty enough to wander in that direction with a quick, “Thanks.”

    Once she was in the bathroom, she slowly shut the door behind her and took the new space in. His bathroom really was almost bigger than her whole space back at Silver Wolf, with a bathtub and shower combination big enough to fit several bodies at once comfortably. It was amazing to think there were people that were simply born into and possessed this level of luxury. Not that she resented him for it, of course -- far from it. But for a woman that had grown up with nothing and no one, it was… sobering, to a point.

    And now that she was alone for a moment, she allowed that somber expression and feeling of dauntingness to settle within her a bit. Mercury wandered over to the counter and stripped off the attire she was currently in, folding it neatly and setting it on the surface. Then, she moved over to the enormous shower and looked it over curiously. The heads that provided water were all on the ceiling in a long row, allowing the jets to fall directly above like rain rather than from a single spout on a wall. She turned the handle and set the temperature of the water to the desired heat before stepping inside and blissfully scrubbing herself down in full.

    Despite how much she was tempted to stay in such a glorious bathing space for the rest of the night, Mercury didn’t linger for long. She took only as much time as she needed to wash out her hair and clean all the evidence of the night’s events off her body with the products available to her, leaving her feeling fresh, if tired. Stepping out, Mercury dried herself off with a towel before crafting a small brush of metal to comb out her long, damp hair. She had a mind to cut it again, as she rarely kept her hair long, but in the interest of not wanting to leave traces of the follicles all over his bathroom she decided against it.

    Once it was detangled, she called a warm light onto her hands and ran them through her hair, drying the strands until there was no moisture left and the hair was dry and silky. Mercury ran her fingers through it a few times while looking in the mirror until a glimmer of light caught her attention. She was still wearing the ring. Looking down at it, Mercury felt a sense of… well, she wasn’t sure. His words from earlier came back to her for some reason, when he’d put it on her in the first place. To match her eyes, he’d said, after calling her beautiful. It wasn’t the first time she’d received such a compliment, but for some reason it had struck her a little differently than those before. Probably just because it wasn’t really in his nature, she told herself. It had just surprised her, that was all.

    Still, Mercury found it difficult to remove the item. She stared down at it for several long seconds before she realized there was a dumb little smile on her face. Shaking her head lightly to rid herself of it, she slipped the jewel off and set it on top of the other linens that she’d removed earlier. When Mercury opened the door to the bathroom she found her bag waiting for her, which she picked up to pull out a set of clothes for her to sleep in, which really was little more than a pair of underwear and a loose, oversized tank top that hung down almost past her ass. Gathering up her bag and the ring, she placed the clothes in a basket that appeared to be for such things and stepped back out into the study.

    Vandrad was doing a small workout in the buff, moving from push ups to sit ups. Mercury couldn’t fathom what would drive anyone to want to exercise right before bed, but he didn’t appear to be building up much if any sweat, so perhaps it wasn’t as strenuous as it appeared on the surface between all his muscle mass. Opting not to interrupt or bug him, she wandered over to one of the sides of the ridiculously immense bed and set her bag down next to the end table there, as well as placing the ring upon the furniture. She wasn’t sure where else to put it for the time being, and didn’t want it to accidentally be lost.

    She didn’t even realize he’d stopped to look at her until he spoke up, asking if she had any nightly routines. Mercury blinked at him in confusion, not having expected the question. At first she thought he was asking for the sake of knowing if there was anything else she needed to do before she would be ready to sleep, but it only took a second or so of reading his expression to realize he was actually just… asking a question out of curiosity. It wasn’t something he normally did. Even by his own admittance a few hours before, Vandrad made it a point not to ask her too much about herself, knowing that she was a pretty guarded person.

    But a lot had changed since they first met, and many of her walls had come down. At least, around Vandrad. Mercury didn’t exactly realize it, but she was comfortable around the man. Comfortable enough, at least, to feel like she could talk about herself some without playing the questions off. “No, not really,” she finally admitted to him, sitting down gently at the edge of the bed, facing him as he did his work out. “At least, nothing like what you’re doing. I tend to spend my evenings mindlessly browsing the lacrinet and relaxing. I suppose that could be considered a routine.”

    Mercury watched him curiously for a few seconds before speaking up again. “Do you do this every night, or just ones where you didn’t get the chance to train?”

    WORDS: 1746/2581 | @Vandrad Ragnos
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Vandrad Ragnos
    Vandrad Ragnos

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Traveller of the Multiverse
    Position : None
    Posts : 435
    Guild : Fairy Tail
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 226,484

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Energy Monarch
    Second Magic: Ark of the Dread Masters
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Vandrad Ragnos 2nd April 2020, 10:14 pm

    There’s no fair or unfair in battle.
    ( There is only victory or in your case, defeat. )
    Bonded Alloys RJtajUnz_o

    Vandrad knew his comments about the chains would get this kind of reaction. He’d specifically said it for the sake of teasing her and likewise, to give her free ammo to tease him back with. She was almost willing to test him to see if he would try and strap her down, saying that she would be overjoyed to turn that on his head for a second time. He simply glanced at her out of the corner of his eye and gave her a smirk that may or may not have told her just how serious he was. Even Vandrad didn’t quite know but he left that option as open ended as possible, if only for the sake of them having a laugh over it.

    Though truth be told, he was curious to see what she would do if he had decided to lock her down. There had been a growing suspicion in the Prince that her slayer abilities weren’t just limited to lightning. It was the first thing he had seen her eat but there was also something to be said about the metal contraptions she created. After his conclusion during their excursion to Ca-Elum, he had done a little bit of research. As he had suspected, the pitch black coloring of magic was usually significant of a God slaying type of magic. He’d worked with one God Slayer many years ago -- a fire God Slayer. He could still remember the black flames that he could sling as easily as one might shoot an arrow. But it was that darkness that raised a question when it came to her metal. It was also as black as pitch so did that mean she was a multi-elemental slayer? He’d heard of them but hadn’t ever gotten the chance to meet one.

    It was a question burning at the forefront of his mind and yet it was the one he didn’t feel right asking. Their… relationship was a complicated one that dabbled between being a rivalry and an odd, awkward friendship. Truth be told, the most earnest conversations and words that had ever passed between them had occurred that very night, save for their one on one talk back in Desierto. He truly did enjoy having her around, as she continually pushed him forward in both his abilities and his demeanor. But she was also always racing right against him, optimizing her own strength and combating him on the battlegrounds of wit and physicality. Still, he couldn’t deny that the honesty that had passed between them over the past couple of hours was… strangely nice. And to think, it had all started when she put that dress on and utterly floored him. He’d never seen a more beautiful sight in his life…

    That came out of nowhere. His brow furrowed and he shook the thought away, ridding himself of his annoying existence. Clearly the alcohol he had consumed was playing tricks on him, heightening parts of his psyche that he usually left lax. It had been a long night full of odd turns and insane ups and downs. He needed rest; to recollect his more confident and true thoughts. Luckily they had arrived at his door and he was only, perhaps, ten minutes away from finally finding his mattress and bidding this day goodbye. He walked in casually, not bothering to stop moving. The sight of the room didn’t hold any wonder to him like it did Mercury and he went to the dresser to strip himself of the terribly worn loincloth. He still found it hard to believe that he had managed to convince himself to wear the damn thing in the first place.

    Yet he did pause when she thanked him, her playful tone seemingly gone. He paused on the second rise, turning to watch as she walked into the bathroom swiftly and soberly. It was like the sight of his room had taken the air from her lungs and the joy from her person. As the door shut, he stood there, flummoxed and staring at the wooden barrier between them. She had never told him as much but he’d suspected that his lifestyle had always been different from her own. The way she had spoken about his family, the way she had marveled at certain things, made it seem like they were afloat in a castle in the sky. She played it off well enough and even a few weeks ago, he may have missed the queues and brief moments but now, after having spent time with her, he spotted them as clear as day. Cracks in her persona that she hid behind an overabundance of charisma, charm and playfulness.

    Then again, didn’t he hide himself too? A chill ran down his spine as memories awash with pain surged through his mind, as they were wont to do late at night. His gaze flicked away from the door as he set upon removing his own mind from sinking him into a cesspit he fought against each and every day. He didn’t allow the dark memories to even pass quickly by in his mind, denying them to such a level that they may as well be locked away in a box. But every so often his hold weakened and cracks opened up, reminding him that they were still there. Yet he paused before he headed up to the dresser, having only taken a single step towards it before halting. Instead, he turned around and went to the door of the bathroom, his hand already folding into a fist to knock so that he could speak to her.

    It was once he was near the door that he could feel it. A cloud within the room, hidden from view. Now that she was away from his eyes, protected from his sight and ears, she allowed herself to truly feel. Her mask was gone and her true feelings floated to the surface. Even with the wooden frame between them, he could feel them on her as if they were his own. Blast this magic -- it was both a damned blessing and a liberating curse. His fingers unfurled themselves and instead, he simply lay his hand on the door, sighing softly through his nostrils. He couldn’t bring himself to say it outloud or really, to focus too hard on it with his own introspection, but there was something there. It was unspoken between them but this night had shown that their connection was stronger than either one of them let on. Chances were they were in denial about it but in these quiet, sober moments of clarity, he couldn’t truly quell the realization. He hadn’t felt this strongly about anyone before, felt like he could trust her with all of his secrets and past. And in a truly sickening way, he wanted her to trust him like that too. He just didn’t know how to go about it.

    Vandrad didn’t know how to interact with people on a truly empathic level. He had been closed off since childhood, focusing on his own internal growth and harboring respect for strength and strength alone. His family were the flock and he was the black sheep, standing stubbornly on the hill and refusing to interact with them. He had seen how well Mercury had gotten along with them, bonding and reveling in their shared interests. And as much as he tried to get on that level, it didn’t feel genuine. He felt like a monkey playing at ape, with the rest of the pride laughing at his stupidity. If he wasn’t broken, maybe he would know what to say to her. If he wasn’t fragments making up a fractured picture, maybe he could make their connection stronger.

    But he couldn’t. So rather than interrupt her moment, he pulled away from the door and went about his business, setting his insecurities back behind their wall and returning to his usual state. He discarded the loincloth on top of the dresser and set himself to his evening workout. A short, cooldown routine to keep his body taut without overexerting itself. He listened as the shower ran itself and then shut off, seemingly in his own little world. He almost missed the click of the door as she opened it, reaching into her bag and finding a pair of clothes to sleep in. He watched her move about the room, his thoughts betraying him and goading him to say something. Did he ask her what was wrong? Did he try and connect with her directly? Why the hell was it so hard?

    Instead, he went an entirely different route. He asked about her nightly routine. It seemed really simple from the outside and for anyone that could sense what Vandrad could, it would probably come off as asinine. But the one thing that the Prince knew was that asking deep questions to Mercury wasn’t going to yield an answer. She would deflect or run around the query with jokes, jests and teases. Her walls were up all around and she only let certain questions come through to be considered with honesty. Yet he had to do something, say something in hopes of distracting her from her thoughts… and his own.

    She answered him honestly, explaining she didn’t really have a routine beyond scrolling through the lacrianet and taking it easy. He nodded softly as he finished up his rep and turned over to finish his last push up set. She came over and sat on the edge of the bed, watching him work. And surprisingly, she put forth her own question. "Every night if I can,” he said as he pushed himself off the ground over and over again. "It’s not a complicated routine nor does it over exert the body. It’s called a cool down workout; keeps the muscles that were stretched earlier in the day fresh.” He finished up and sat himself up, crossing his legs over themselves and looking up at her. "I honestly thought you’d be one to sleep naked,” he observed, nodding to her clothes. "Not that you need to be or anything. Just… figured you were more of an all natural woman. Feeling the sheets on your skin and… all of that.”

    What the hell was he even babbling about? Grunting, he got himself to his feet and walked around to the opposite side of the bed. "Are you a firm or soft pillow person? There’s both types on the bed so you can just… pick one.” He honestly needed to stop talking. He was going on like an absolute moron.








    Words: 1787 / 3678 | Tag: @Mercury Arseneault | © marzia at shine & gs.


    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 376
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 51,297

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 3rd April 2020, 11:52 am

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    If it was difficult for Vandrad to figure out how to connect with someone, it was nearly impossible for Mercury. He had grown up with basic things that she’d never gotten exposure to, which included healthy interactions with other people. Since coming to Earthland, she’d witnessed these normal behaviors on a near daily basis, using them as cues to mimic and try to play off of in order to blend in with the strange and alien society she had found herself in. Not that Earthland was unpleasant. Far from it. It was actually the nicest place she’d ever been, and Mercury had adapted to life there fairly quickly, finding the relatively peaceful setting comfortable.

    But for as much as she got along with most others, she didn’t really know how to bond with them. In fact, she didn’t want to. Mercury had a job to do, one that superseded her role with Silver Wolf and was above any laws and government of the countries here, and it was easier to do that job if she didn’t get too attached to or familiar with the rest of the planet’s population. So she kept her distance, even from those she genuinely liked such as Theo and Aspen, not letting herself get too close for her own sake.

    And yet here she was with Vandrad, doing her honest best at attempting to have a meaningful conversation of some kind. She felt like she was floundering at it, but she was trying. It had occurred to her back during their sober conversation at the bar that a large part of her actually wanted him to ask more about her, to get to know her. Mercury simply didn’t know how to convey that without sounding pathetic. So she did her best to follow his prompts, answering his simple question without giving him any teasing runaround and following it with one of her own.

    He told her that he performed this workout every night, just about, describing it as an effortless routine that was just mean to keep his body limber rather than actually work it out in full. She supposed that made sense. Mercury hadn’t ever taken up such practices, but up until recently she lived in a setting where things were always chaotic and she was constantly having to keep herself in peak agility. Such mild workouts weren’t necessary when the only rest one got every day was a few hours sleep at night, and the rest of their time was spent in continual movement.

    Mercury was a bit surprised, again, when he brought up his curiosity over the fact that she actually wore clothing to sleep. It seemed he had pegged her for a woman that slept in the nude, which was an… odd thing to assume about someone. Still, she supposed it wasn’t too far of a stretch considering her usual mannerisms. “Sometimes I do,” she admitted with a small smirk. Then, Mercury shrugged a little. “I don’t know, it never really occurred to me as something to do regularly. Nudity doesn’t really bother me, but if something were to happen in the middle of the night I’d prefer to have clothes on.”

    How easily the simple sentence slipped from her lips, saying so little and so much at the same time. It was an issue of vulnerability for her, a worry that if something came up while she was asleep that she would be caught at more than one disadvantage. And from the honest tone of her voice, he could probably surmise that it was an issue she’d had to consider a number of times in the past, despite how casually she tried to say it. Or at least, he could probably surmise it by the way that she hadn’t taken the opportunity to tease him and suggest that he was trying to get her out of her clothes, despite the prime set up for such comments.

    The prince stood up and moved to the other side of the bed only to start asking her about pillows. Even someone as socially inept as Mercury could sense that was an odd question. “Umm..” she said, doing her best to try and answer the question without making the moment awkward. Her emerald eyes glanced to the pillows that lined the headboard, most of which looked as though they hadn’t been touched in quite some time. “It… doesn’t really matter to me, I guess. A pillow is a pillow. I suppose softer ones are nice.”

    Something in her was screaming that this was just a trainwreck of a conversation, even if she couldn’t put together why. What could be so awkward about talking about pillows? Yet there was still an odd, mild tension in the room as though they were back at the bar, or in Themesycia’s dressing room. Very much interested in making that stop, her gaze panned around the room looking for something to prompt a less odd conversation. Her eyes fell once more on the ring, which she gently and unthinkingly picked up and held up for him to see across the bed. “I wasn’t sure what I should do with this,” she told him. “I didn’t want to lose it by accident. Where do you want me to put it?”

    WORDS: 900/3481 | @Vandrad Ragnos
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Vandrad Ragnos
    Vandrad Ragnos

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Traveller of the Multiverse
    Position : None
    Posts : 435
    Guild : Fairy Tail
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 226,484

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Energy Monarch
    Second Magic: Ark of the Dread Masters
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Vandrad Ragnos 3rd April 2020, 3:17 pm

    There’s no fair or unfair in battle.
    ( There is only victory or in your case, defeat. )
    Bonded Alloys RJtajUnz_o

    If there was one obvious thing about what Vandrad was doing, it was clear that he was certainly trying to ask her questions he generally avoided before. There were far deeper, more personal queries he had that he wanted to know the answers for, if only to get to know her better. Mercury could probably recognize that… but then again, maybe she wouldn’t. Given the moments they had had between one another, they both seemed pretty atrocious at opening up. But for the Prince, it seemed like she was closed off because she had to be. Her walls were erected because she knew she needed them. He couldn’t blame her on that front; his own deeper secrets were buried even from his own seeking eyes. He wasn’t sure he would be comfortable letting anyone see that deep. But Mercury certainly was the closest person to that possibility…

    But if he could go a damn hour or so without remarking about her clothing -- or lack thereof -- he would be perfectly swell. Yet in a moment of absolute ingenuity and deeper philosophical thinking, he had opted to comment about the fact that she wore clothing to bed. His journey to getting to know her on a deeper emotional level and instead, he couldn’t help himself but focus on her body yet again. He felt like a damn fool and his cheeks were already starting to burn in embarrassment over the ridiculous observation. She took it… well enough, without raining teases down upon him for it. She admitted that she did occasionally but it wasn’t something she did often. While she had no problem with nudity, obviously, she didn’t want to be in the buff and caught unawares, should something happen.

    It was that comment that resonated within him, keeping him from shutting down any sort of continuation of questions. He looked up at her, his study of her face going deeper than the surface. It was a quick and brutal reminder of how similar they were, in terms of preparedness. There was a history running through the unintended confession, her words coming more from experience than simple wariness. His shame faded away as she built a foundation for him, restoring the connection that was, at best, thin and weak. It wasn’t that their relationship was in any kind of straits, far from it. It was moving into a new area that clearly neither one of them had traversed before. One wayward step and they would retreat back to where they were comfortable, back to the place they were before.

    But it was obvious they both wanted to move forward, even if neither would say it outloud. "I get that,” he said softly, nodding. "I sometimes forget that I’m back here, back where battles and wars and never ending conflict is around me. I never slept like this when I was in the army -- it was always in military gear, if you could sleep at all. Half the night was spent staring up at the sky, waiting for the sound of battle to erupt at any moment.” He spoke his words quietly, almost as if he was speaking in a confessional. "I still have nights where I jerk awake, almost on instinct…”

    His eyes flickered out of their gaze and set themselves back on her as he realized what he was saying. "I’m sorry. I shouldn’t assume,” he quickly apologized, pushing himself to his feet and finding himself back down on wavering ground. Some people couldn’t deal with being thrust back into the dark, thrown violently into memories that didn’t inspire happiness. He didn’t want to inadvertently cause her distress or cause an episode so he quickly backtracked, landing almost exactly where he had been before. And that resulted in him asking her about what kind of pillows she liked. This open moment of bonding and he was asking what kind of pillow she preferred; he was even worse at this than he thought he was. The question took her off guard, as she struggled to think of some kind of answer to such a ludicrous question.

    She remarked about as well as anyone would, saying that a pillow was a pillow in the end. She did him a favor by leaning more towards the soft side, if only to give him a solid answer for a question he didn’t really care about. He gulped softly and nodded, words about pillows suddenly flooding his mind so that he could carry on a conversation about pillows. But this time he shut it down, keeping his mouth from spouting utter nonsense. That gave her the perfect opportunity to draw attention to the ring she had removed -- the one that he had gifted her. Of course she did, why wouldn’t she? He had given it to her seemingly out of the blue, commenting about it and her eyes and her beauty and making an utter mockery of himself. It wasn’t like his room was filled with pictures or mementos for her to focus on and open a dialogue about.

    "It’s-it’s yours,” he said, bubbling the words out pathetically. He took a moment to mentally kick himself, reaffirming his thoughts in a somewhat sensible fashion. "I mean I gave it to you as a gift. It’s been sitting there collecting dust for years. No one wears it and considering it matched your eyes, I felt it was appropriate that you wear it. And uh…” This is where it got tricky. How did he say this without coming across as a sap? "I don’t think it would look good on anyone else’s finger,” he mumbled quickly, fighting off the blush that was threatening his face once more. "I… I want you to have it,” he managed to wrap up the sentiment with something real, without flapping in the wind uselessly.

    But gods, did he feel odd. His stomach was clenched tight, like a vice had gotten ahold of it. His heart was surprisingly thumping inside of his chest cavity, the strangest sensation ebbing through his veins. He swallowed hard and flipped open the covers to the bed, sliding himself down onto the mattress. There he lay on his back, arms pressed on top of the comforter, staring at the quartz ceiling and wondering just what the hell was going on. Should he just roll over and go to sleep? Bid her goodnight first? Did he keep asking questions? Maybe try something a bit more… personal? What was something he could transition into easily? "Your magic,” he said before he could formally process the thought. "Do… do you mind if I ask what it is? I have a theory and I was wondering if I was right…”







    Words: 1156 / 4834 | Tag: @Mercury Arseneault | © marzia at shine & gs.


    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 376
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 51,297

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 3rd April 2020, 8:20 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    Her comment about sleeping in clothes seemed to trigger some sense of familiarity in him. Vandrad openly stated about how he often had flashbacks to some of the battles he’d been in before, and how he always had to sleep in his armor during those fights because they never knew when they were going to be ambushed in the middle of the night. Mercury listened intently, surprised by how easily he opened up about something so difficult, though the quietness of his voice indicated that it wasn’t necessarily something that he talked about often. He started to go into how there were nights that he was still woken by nightmares before his voice trailed off, his eyes flicking back to her as if realizing for the first time the nature of what he was saying.

    He apologized to her, apparently feeling as though he had assumed something about her when he shouldn’t. And really, Mercury hadn’t even thought about any of that. Her gaze had been on him the entire time, giving him her full, sober attention as he referenced awful things that had happened to him. “It’s okay…” Mercury told him quietly, her tone gentle though she did lose eye contact briefly over the change in focus. It truly didn’t bother her to hear him talk about things that still heavily affected him. She’d spent her whole life learning to compartmentalize her traumas to the point where she didn’t even really realize that she was a fairly traumatized individual. What Vandrad was starting to recognize as a mask was simply the person that Mercury believed herself to be, a strong woman who had overcome her challenges and learned to adapt to them without being affected by them, even though the truth of it was that they ate away at her from the inside.

    Still, it was a moment of connection that neither of them really seemed prepared to deal with, and thus the conversation turned to a weird one about pillows before she stupidly brought up the ring. Why in the world would she bring that up in an attempt to make things less awkward? It was probably the most tense topic of conversation she could have started, given the odd, uncharacteristically sweet manner in which he’d given it to her in the first place. Mercury called herself ten kinds of idiot behind her calm expression, dumbly holding the thing out to him and awaiting instructions.

    With a slightly wavering voice, Vandrad caught her off guard by informing her that it was hers to keep. “W-what?” she asked, her own words shaken ever so slightly by the unexpected gesture. “But I couldn’t…” Her voice trailed off as another unfamiliar sensation gripped her stomach. This family was being so giving to her, and not with cheap things that were easily cast aside. First a dress fit for a queen, and now this…

    But Vandrad gently cut off her protests, explaining that he hadn’t intended for it to be borrowed. When he’d given it to her, it had been meant as a gift. As he explained, the item was never worn by anyone, just sitting and building cobwebs. It was a waste, one that could be solved by letting her have it. The prince stumbled over his wording a bit, losing some of his confidence as he practically muttered about how it wouldn’t look right on anyone else. He’d said it so quietly that Mercury honestly might not have been able to hear him if it weren’t for her enhanced hearing. Her stomach twisted again, and then even more when he gently but firmly insisted that he simply wanted her to have it.

    It took her a few long seconds to respond, her mouth opening once like she might try to protest again but no words could form. Once more she found herself overwhelmed by a sensation of intimidation, not sure how to accept something she didn’t really feel worthy of. It was so small and so valuable, and unlike the load of treasures they’d found in their first job together, it held some kind of emotional value as well. What if she lost it? What if it broke? Yet she couldn’t find a reason to say no, because the truth was that she wanted to keep it, even though she couldn’t really understand why.

    “Thank you..” she finally said, her tone barely above a whisper as a slight blush of her own rose to her cheeks, still unable to make eye contact with him. Turning, Mercury set the jewel back down on the nightstand so softly that it may as well have been made of glass. Then, taking the cue from him, she shifted on her seat enough to pull the covers out from under her bottom and slid under them, laying there same as him with her gaze set almost a little too firmly on the gemmed ceiling while she wrestled with thoughts and emotions that she didn’t know how to interpret.

    Mercury wasn’t sure how much time had passed in charged silence before he finally spoke up again, this time tentatively asking her about her magic. She had wondered when that question would come up, having honestly expected it sooner than now. Even a week ago, Mercury probably wouldn’t have answered, preferring to give him the runaround and keep him on his toes. Ever since their voyage to Ca-Elum, though, she’d realized that she would probably tell him if he brought it up, and that realization had only been further confirmed after everything tonight.

    There was a moment of silence and hesitation on her part, but not from an uncertainty in telling him. Rather, it was an uncertainty on how to answer a question she didn’t have all the information on. “I don’t fully know,” Mercury finally told him in quiet honesty. “I’m still trying to understand it. Magic is… new to me. It doesn’t exist where I’m from.” It was the most she’d ever really said about the place she’d been raised, a telling comment that was sure to shock someone who took the existence of magic for granted because of how integrated it was to everyday life in all the known countries in the area.

    She bit her lip a little in thought and continued. “My understanding is that it’s slayer magic, which my research has told me isn’t terribly common. It was taught to me by a man named Jadus, who I guess is a demon.” The way she spoke about Jadus made it obvious that she didn’t really think it a big deal to confirm what he was, like the concept of a demon held little value or weight to her. “We got into a fight when I was on a job and he was in the way of what I needed. I attacked him, and he gave me a swift ass kicking… but he didn’t kill me. He decided to teach me his magic instead, which was the ability to control metal.”

    It was a little easier to talk about this after she’d already answered a similar question for Gangting, but this time Mercury felt more comfortable relaying some of her uncertainties regarding the subject. The giant was still a source of uncertainty for her, but Vandrad… he had earned some of her trust. More than she realized, even. “I didn’t understand what it was for a while, cause he didn’t give me a name for it. But then I went on another job later with another slayer that controlled earth. We were looking into a castle that was haunted by a demon, and I guess he hates those. The demon recognized the nature of my magic and offered me more, which pissed Gangting off… He gets his magic from a god, which I guess makes us enemies or something.”

    Apparently it was her turn to ramble. She shook her head to clear it of the silliness and get back on track. “Anyway… I was able to observe from him and figure out that our magic was more similar than I had realized. Which I confirmed later after I took the power from the other demon, who… expanded my abilities to other things? I’m not sure how to word it. But now I can control metal, lightning, light, and oil… grease… whatever you want to call it.” Four elements, all ones that he might be able to deduce were key ingredients for technology and engineering, things that she was able to conjure out of thin air, generally in the form of her dark tablets and other electronics. “I guess that’s a lot of stuff to control for one slayer. All the research I’ve done has said that most only master one element, maybe two on rare occasions. But I don’t know… I’m still trying to make sense of it myself.”

    WORDS: 1516/4997 | @Vandrad Ragnos
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Vandrad Ragnos
    Vandrad Ragnos

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Traveller of the Multiverse
    Position : None
    Posts : 435
    Guild : Fairy Tail
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 226,484

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Energy Monarch
    Second Magic: Ark of the Dread Masters
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Vandrad Ragnos 3rd April 2020, 9:33 pm

    There’s no fair or unfair in battle.
    ( There is only victory or in your case, defeat. )
    Bonded Alloys RJtajUnz_o

    Well, at the very least, he hadn’t triggered anything in her. She ensured him that it was okay to talk about his experiences and it wouldn’t cause any issue. He glanced up briefly to her before he finally got to his feet, now trying to find some kind of footing in a situation that wasn’t that easy to understand or comprehend. Yet he was trying and that was something, right? He imagined his mother would be chuckling mirthfully at the idea that he was attempting some kind of friendly connection. Then again, she had been a bit attached to Mercury since the moment the Silver Wolf mage revealed herself.

    But wartime trauma was something he could talk about easily. Vandrad didn’t pretend that he wasn’t scarred from his experiences; he had plenty of physical ones and certainly a fair number of mental ones as well. But his emotions were hardened to the point that everything he had witnessed and things he had done didn’t affect him like they did others. He had seen soldiers shaking in their boots and vomiting after a truly bloody battle while he, himself, was coated in gore and seemingly unaware of it. The thrill of a fight had ingrained itself so deeply into his soul that he never truly felt alive outside of it. Well, almost never. His gaze slowly turned towards her as if to answer the unspoken question but he quickly shook the feeling off, not even willing to confirm it to himself.

    In the midst of floundering, she turned the attention to the ring. And finding some courage deep within to speak his mind, albeit in stops and halts, he managed to relay that he wanted her to keep the ring. The look of utter shock on her face was enough to tell him just how surprised she was by the action. She even tried to refuse it at first, stating that she couldn’t accept it. But he was quick to cut her off with his deeper explanation, his intent having been for her to keep it the whole time. It was a pungent, pregnant moment between them as he stood there, wanting to thumb at his clothing but lacking the material. When she finally thanked him for it, he nodded firmly, his own blush darkening against his face as he looked away, trying his hardest not to let her see. It was because of this that he missed her own blush draping her cheeks. So the ring situation was solved and thankfully, she had accepted it. He couldn’t help the feeling of relief that spread through his body -- he wasn’t sure what he would have done if she had turned it down.

    Then they both got into bed, happy to be far enough way from one another that they didn’t feel compelled to look at one another. Gods, he could feel such a strong emotional wave coming off of her but it was chaotic and unreadable. It simply felt like a pressure pushing against him, almost urging him to do something. So he asked her one of the burning questions in his mind, jumping from ridiculous queries to truly personal ones. It came blubbering out of his mouth before he could truly formulate the thoughts and there it was, hanging in the air between the two of them. He couldn’t take it back -- that would make him look more the fool.

    Several beats of long, pressing silence passed as his voice faded away, the Prince unsure if she would answer at all. Right when he was about to ask if she was even awake, she spoke up. In truth, she didn’t understand her magic to its full extent. She continued, saying that she was still in the midst of learning it, as it was completely new to her. Not just her solitary magic but the concept itself -- apparently where she came from, it didn’t even exist. She’d mentioned when they had first met that she was still learning her magic, despite the fact that she wielded it almost masterfully. But the true nugget of information was her home; a place that lacked any and all magic. Of course one might assume that the Neutral Grounds in Fiore would be where she hailed from them. Or perhaps one of the other areas in the world that lacked ethernano and ran primarily on technology. Yet that wouldn’t make sense -- the very notion of magic was still well known to those in the zones, they just couldn’t utilize it themselves. No, she came from somewhere that had never even realized it.

    That shortened the list of places she called home then. Perhaps another dimension or another planet altogether? Beira had confirmed to him that humanoid beings existed outside of Earthland and could come from completely new places and times, an answer that hadn’t truly surprised Vandrad. He’d done his research over the years and he knew that the possibility of such things was far more feasible than it was impossible. He hadn’t had the opportunity to meet one until he met Beira… or well, rather Mercury. He’d known the Silver Wolf mage longer so it seemed she had been his first interaction with a non-Earthland lifeform. It made him all the more curious… and yet, he felt he shouldn’t ask about it. If she wanted to tell him about it, she would have elected to do so right then and there. One doesn’t just throw that nugget of information out there without explanation unless they were afraid of saying it or trying to tease someone. And unlike every other time, he didn’t get the feeling she was in a teasing mood.

    Vandrad turned in the bed, finding the strength of will to lean up on his elbow and look at her. If she was going to give him an explanation, she deserved all of his attention, after all. She paused to think before continuing, finally confirming that she did have slayer magic. She had received the training for it through a man named Jadus, apparently a demon she had encountered on a job. She attempted to subdue him but he had turned her ass over head, utterly defeating her. But rather than killing her, he opted to instead teach her his magic, allowing her control over metal. After that, she hadn’t truly come to grips with what it was until she had gone on a job with another slayer named Gangting, a name completely alien to him. An Earth slayer, they had encountered a demon who had realized the magical frequency of Mercury’s power and offered her more. That had pissed her partner off because, as it seems, his Slaying abilities came from a god and was meant to be used against those self same demons.

    After that, she had taken the power from the other demon and it had pushed her limits beyond what she had before. In the end, she had control over multiple elements; metal, lightning, light and mechanical sludge, be it oil, grease or what have you. A rare feat for a slayer to have more than one and even more rare to go beyond two. Most people couldn’t handle that immense power. And she had realized that pretty quickly after doing her own research into it.

    He nodded softly, in thought. "People here have a warped sense when it comes to demons, gods and what have you. Most people have this belief that demons are evil and gods are good but really, they are the same. Beings of strength that want to rule and control and bask themselves in a superior light.” He sighed softly through his nostrils as he looked at her. "Whatever the case, your decision is your decision. You did what you felt was the right thing to do. This… Gangting seems a bit caught up in the philosophical and spiritual battle that barely even matters in the long run. So long as you found a purpose for your actions, who cares what other people think?” he told her with a soft shrug. It was true that he had said a volley of nasty things to her during their time together and no doubt he would continue to find ways to twist his own knife in her. But she had more than earned his trust at this point and making a deal with one, two or however many demons wouldn’t matter to him. If she was making the decision, he would back her.

    He snorted softly. "Four elements. That’s quite a range of control. It does explain your ability to summon devices practically out of thin air,” he said with a small, wry smirk as he lay back down flat. As he got himself comfortable, he looked over to her one last time. "I hope this goes without saying but… if we were put in that situation together, I’d back your play. I trust you, Mercury.”

    Yet another odd moment that made his insides twist and turn. He swallowed again. "Well uh… goodnight,” he said simply, not moving right away. But after a moment of consideration, he finally turned himself onto his back to look back to the ceiling. The room, magically enchanted to sense when a person had decided to go to sleep, allowed the lights to dim until they were in almost complete darkness. Vandrad lay awake for a few more minutes, questions and words running wild in his head. But he never let them fly and soon, his eyes were fluttering closed and he was passing into the dark of unconsciousness.







    Words: 1613 / 6447 | Tag: @Mercury Arseneault | © marzia at shine & gs.


    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 376
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 51,297

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 3rd April 2020, 11:10 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    It was strange to talk about herself so openly, particularly about things she didn’t fully understand and that were near vulnerabilities for her. But, it wasn’t unwelcome. Mercury found that it was difficult to start but once she was going it got easier. She was sure that he was probably narrowing down the potential list of her origins that he likely had in his head, and for the first time since she’d come to Earthland Mercury actually wanted to tell him. But there was no safe way to do so. She felt bad that she had to skirt around the topic, and grateful that he didn’t comment on it or ask her about it later.

    For his part, Vandrad listened in rapt silence without interrupting her, sitting up on his elbow and turning to face her so she would have his undivided attention. Mercury honestly wasn’t sure how Vandrad would take the knowledge of her consorting with a demon, technically with two. The only other person who knew was Gangting, and his reaction to it had been very judgemental, to put it nicely. He had been a bit more forgiving about it the second time they met and actually got a chance to talk, but even that had felt a bit forced… and he hadn’t exactly apologized for his actions on their first job, bossing her around and treating her like a servant. Still, he was her only means of comparison for talking about these things, and while Mercury didn’t think that Vandrad would explode on her like Gangting had, she still felt certain that he would have an opinion on the matter.

    To her surprise, he simply went into the philosophy behind the existence of gods and demons, and their spiritual war with one another. Most people, he said, had this idea in their minds that gods were always good and demons were always evil, but the prince seemed to share Mercury’s own observation that they really were just two beings cut from the same cloth on opposite sides of a disagreement. She didn’t say it out loud, but it was a bit validating to hear someone share her thoughts on it, though a part of her recognized that she still wasn’t quite grasping the concept of them.

    He assured her that her decision to accept power from Jadus and the other demon were her own choice, and not something she needed to feel shame over. He even went so far as to suggest that Gangting had been a bit too biased in his opinion on the situation, clearly using his own personal experiences to determine what should have been right or wrong for Mercury. But according to Vandrad, the only one whose opinion on it mattered was her own, and whether or not she felt she made the right call. Since she did, then it wasn’t a big deal -- she did what was wise and what had given her strength.

    After a moment of silence to ponder her story, he found a bit of amusement in the knowledge of her magic, commenting on how she had four elements she could control and tying it back to her ability to more or less fabricate electronic devices out of nothing. She smirked a little back at him. “I do enjoy keeping people guessing,” Mercury told him, not so much a request to keep the knowledge to himself -- as she was certain he would anyway -- but more to express her delight that she had kept everything so close to the chest that even someone as observant as himself hadn’t fully been able to figure it out without asking.

    He laid back down to settle himself for sleep, but not without casting her one more look and took the time to tell her that, had he been the one on that job with her rather than Gangting, he would have ran with whatever she’d decided to do. He trusted her, he said. It was words she couldn’t recall ever hearing from someone before, at least not with the level of sincerity that the prince was currently giving it. The look she gave him, as well as the twist in her emotional state, would easily tell him as much. The few times she’d had someone tell her they trusted her, it was usually by someone who’s trust she’d been specifically looking to earn before pulling the rug from under their feet in some trap or another.

    This was the first time she’d been told that in full earnesty, and from someone whose trust actually meant something to her. It left her feeling odd and perplexed, though not necessarily displeased. “Thank you, Vandrad,” Mercury told him, meaning it. She didn’t even realize it was the first time she’d actually called him by his name rather than a teasing moniker of some kind.

    Thankfully, he used the time after that to bid her goodnight, putting an end to the disarming conversations and emotions that had been flitting back and forth between them all evening. Mercury welcomed the chance for sleep, though a part of her was a bit sad that they had to stop. But it had been a long day for both of them, arguably more for him given what he’d had to put up with during the gala, so she silently agreed that it was best the two of them get some rest. She was exhausted anyway, honestly surprised that she had found the energy to stay awake long enough to chat with him a little longer.

    “Night,” she told him gently, and after a moment she turned away from him onto her side, facing the edge of the bed. The lights dimmed of their own accord, as far as she could tell, like they had sense they were ready to turn in for the night. Like him, Mercury laid awake for a while longer, her mind racing with trying to turn over the night’s events to understand them and coming up mostly empty.

    It took her a while to fall asleep, the thoughts keeping her awake though not necessarily in any troubled or concerned mood. If anything, Mercury was too tired to feel overly wary of everything that had happened, her thoughts jumping between various memories of the night without lingering too long on any of them to form a coherent opinion of them. She could sense from her radars when he finally drifted off into sleep, his breathing and pulse slowing down to much lower levels than that of a person who was awake. The slayer wanted sleep fairly bad herself, but despite how absurdly comfortable his bed was and how much more tired she probably was than him given her strenuous extra two hours, it just wouldn’t come.

    Eventually she opened her eyes and turned enough on the bed to look up above her, eyes swapping into night vision so that she could see the room more clearly despite it being exceptionally dark. Mercury wondered if she would accidentally wake him by getting up to brows a bit on her iLac in an attempt to stupify herself to sleep, but thought better of it when she remembered his joking comment about waking up before she could get very far away from the bed. It had been said in jest to deter her from trying to sneak off into his mother’s bedroom, but given the things he’d admitted to her tonight about his own history in battles… well, she wouldn’t be surprised if he really was that light of a sleeper. Most night, she was the same.

    Her head turned and rested on the side table where the ring sat in the dark. Once more, his words turned over in her mind, the reasons he’d given her for wanting to have it permanently. Normally Mercury would be suspicious of anyone giving her such nice things and trying to butter her up, but given how well she knew Vandrad by this point and how quickly she’d gotten an honest feel for his family, she knew it wasn’t gestures made out of any attempt to get her to lower her guard. They were gifts, pure and simple… because they liked and respected her. It was unusual to feel those things.

    She slowly reached over and picked the tiny item up, holding it over her chest and turning it gently in her fingers to look it over. It was simple, but pretty, with elegant little etching of vines along the side that she’d not really noticed before. The emerald glistened in her night vision with the very little amount of ambient light that drifted into the room from the moonlight through the windows. Allowing herself a tiny smile, she finally slipped the item back onto her middle finger. Somehow, the simple act made her feel more peaceful, and after only a couple more minutes of caressing the metal and gem lightly between the pads of her other hand, she was finally able to turn over and fall asleep herself.

    And for once, it was a deep, heavy sleep. Mercury was fully out through the rest of the night, thoroughly exhausted by a long day of travel followed by two active parties, her first unexpected and rather rigorous threesome, and all the swinging emotions throughout the evening that had a way of wearing down even the most social of people. She didn’t wake up once, even as her body naturally turned in her sleep, unconsciously drawing her further from the edge of the bed and more toward the center. She hugged her pillow gently, hand resting on its soft mass as Mercury breathed in peaceful sleep, for once in her life feeling secure and safe enough to fall asleep without having to worry about having to be on her guard.

    WORDS: 1646/6643 | @Vandrad Ragnos
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Vandrad Ragnos
    Vandrad Ragnos

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Traveller of the Multiverse
    Position : None
    Posts : 435
    Guild : Fairy Tail
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 226,484

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Energy Monarch
    Second Magic: Ark of the Dread Masters
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Vandrad Ragnos 5th April 2020, 6:16 pm

    There’s no fair or unfair in battle.
    ( There is only victory or in your case, defeat. )
    Bonded Alloys RJtajUnz_o

    Vandrad didn’t trust easily -- it was something that had always eluded him unless he was going through significant trials and tests with another person. Truthfully, the only people that he relied and held a strong bond with were his family members and even then, there were ones that he didn’t trust in certain regards, a la his mother and uncle with Mercury. But other than that strange situation, they had his trust. The soldiers under his command were given a level of that faith, if only as they were his subordinates and he was their acting commander. There needed to be a reliance there or else the battlefield would tear them apart. Sides that made up almost the entirety of Vandrad’s existence; the royal side and the military side.

    Yet he was quickly learning that, apparently, he was deeper than that. He had further layers that had developed and remained hidden from sight. And the driving force behind that awareness and education had, in fact, been Mercury. By all rights, there was no reason they should even be allies, let alone what many would consider friends. She had screwed with him intentionally more times than she had helped him and had always done so with a smirk and a mischievous glimmer. But that was part of what made her attractive, in a completely ambiguously challenging sort of way and nothing beyond that. She raised the stakes and, better yet, she didn’t let her rank within any organization influence her opinion of him. She took what he presented and only used the extra dressing truly as ammo to tease him with.

    She’d done enough though to prove she was trustworthy. Perhaps she wasn’t altogether too forward with information pertaining to herself and of course, she still found ways of playing tricks upon him that he wouldn’t expect but when push came to shove, she was there and she didn’t back down. It was an odd sensation to come to realize, the words coming out before he had truly set them to stone in his heart. It had been upon hearing her story with Gangting that had made him realize just how understanding he would be of her choices. Maybe he wouldn’t trust the word of a demon, maybe he wouldn’t take the power but she had and done so for her own reasons to strengthen herself. Who was he or anyone to simply stand in her way? No, he knew for a fact that he’d be right behind her, supporting her choice in whatever they faced. She had earned that.

    And that’s why his resistance to her being close to Simon and Themesycia was... puzzling. He knew that if he left them alone for too long, there was a good chance they would get up to some debauchery. His family already seemed embattled in seeing who could woo her out of her pants as it was. And why should he care? She was his ally and, he supposed, a trusted acquaintance and the one time they had slept together had been a means of getting tension out of the air. Was he doing it to protect her from getting too attached to his blaze family that would simply bed her for their own entertainment? That couldn’t be it -- he could already tell the lot of them truly enjoyed her presence. His mother saw a woman after her own heart and his uncle saw a truly challenging woman that could provide him witty and flirty conversation. His cousins were already idolizing her at this point. If anything, the Silver Wolf mage would probably be floored at how committed they were to wanting to keep her around or at least entice her to visit again.

    He honestly couldn’t think of any substance to the strange sensation. It was probably a byproduct of his exhaustion and the trials from the night. Sabine had certainly been the biggest but he had been pressed into some challenging moments with Mercury as well. Not altogether displeasing but just… alien to him. Rather than focus on them too hard, he instead locked them away for consideration later and allowed his mind to drift away. Unlike most people, the Prince of Bellum was quite adept at boxing his worries and cares up so that he could get sleep; a practice he had mastered during his time in the army, he supposed. One needed to be able to get rest whenever they were able and staying away to focus on anxieties removed any possibility of sleep. A sleep-deprived soldier was like to make mistakes that could end in tragedy. Plus some of the worst thoughts -- and even memories -- had a way of sneaking out from their mental closets to roam free in the dark.

    After several minutes of lying awake, trying to decide if he just wanted to… well, continue conversing with her, sleep took him. It was odd, knowing that he would have liked to ask more questions and get to know her further rather than rest. Luckily practice had taken the initiative and stopped him from making any foolhardy decisions. And he rested hard -- his comments to her about waking up if she moved were, ironically, false in terms of this singular night. If she had stirred and removed herself from the room, he unfortunately wouldn’t have known. He slept on as the night hours rolled past, his body naturally moving away from the edge of the bed and more towards the center. He had always slept in the center of his bed normally, not accustomed to spending it on the outer edges for the sake of giving the Silver Wolf mage room. But his sleeping pattern couldn’t just alter because he didn’t have the consciousness to will it so. Soon he came to rest in the middle of the bed, where it just so happened that Mercury had moved to in her own sleep.

    He awoke slowly as he realized that something was on him. It was soft and warm and it was breathing rather slowly, given the movement of the torso. Groggily his eyelids fluttered open to find Mercury there, gently pressed up against his side and cuddling him for all he was worth. He blinked a few times, wondering if he was dreaming -- as well as wondering why he would dream about such an occurrence. But no, she was there, the sleeping Silver Wolf mage lost to her rest and was now nuzzling against his arm. He scoffed silently, in half amusement and half rebellion. He thought to wake her up and insist she return to her side when he glanced over and saw that he, in fact, had wound up in the center with her. Plus he… didn’t really want her to go. That was a strange sensation to realize, after having just woken up.

    He toyed with that for a moment as he stared up at the ceiling, trying to decide what to do. In the privacy of the late night, with no one around to see them, he opted for a course that he never expected. Slowly he slid his arm up and over her form and then gently brought it down to press against her back, inviting her to fully cuddle him. And it seemed her body was all for it; she felt his shift and scooted closer in on him, an arm haplessly tossed over his torso as her body opted for the warmth he contained. It was a damn good thing she was asleep, as the blush on his face was nearly as vibrant as the sun’s shine itself. But he also couldn’t deny how comfortable she felt, gently wrapped around him. Or how… right.

    These thoughts were dangerous. He mentally shook them away and forced himself not to dwell. Instead, he simply held her close to him and allowed the feel of her body and her warmth ease him back into a, ironically, more comfortable sleep. Several hours later, the sun was barely streaming in the top panes of the windows inset in the crystal. His body, despite having stayed up later than usual, began to rouse him from his slumber. As he awoke, he found that neither one of them had moved at all after their precarious cuddle. Luckily, she seemed still fairly knocked out so when he carefully slid out of her hold, she simply rolled over and continued to rest. That gave him time to get up and get dressed for the morning.

    He found out a short while later that, due to the party going so late, that breakfast was going to be delayed a few hours. His mother may have made that decision after Vandrad informed her that Mercury would most likely not even be conscious for a few hours. That was fine -- she had traveled all the way here yesterday and been swept up in the du Wolff extravaganza so she had earned extra hours of sleep. It just gave him an excuse to wake her up earlier the next day for training. He used that time to visit the workout space out in the yard and get his morning routine in, albeit without a barely conscious and grumbling Silver Wolf mage. The Prince had nearly lost track of time when Themesycia came out and asked if they should awake Mercury, if only to get some food in her. The Duchess was more than welcome to the idea of her going to wake Mercury up but Vandrad knew that meant she would climb into bed with her and then they would most likely be waiting even longer.

    Upon returning to his chambers, he hopped up to the platform with his bed and walked over to where she rested. Against his more abrasive instincts, he sat down on the edge of the bed and reached over, carefully laying his hand on her back. Then he started to rock her gently, easing her out of sleep. "Morning,” he said simply when she was finally conscious enough to understand. "If you sleep any longer, you’ll miss half the day. And I imagine you want a hot breakfast rather than a cold lunch,” he said, doing his best not to smirk in his own amusement. He glanced over at her bag. "Did you happen to pack a bathing suit? Today we’re having breakfast by the pool and my mother is strict on the attire being appropriate. If not, she’s given us leave to get you something from her wardrobe.”







    Words: 1764 / 8211 | Tag: @Mercury Arseneault | © marzia at shine & gs.


    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 376
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 51,297

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 5th April 2020, 9:13 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    Mercury woke in the morning to a hand on her back gently shaking her. She groaned in protest, greatly displeased at her slumber being interrupted. It was only the knowledge of where she was that gave her the wherewithal to roll sluggishly onto her back, her eyes practically glaring at the light in the room that dared to shine so bright when she so desperately wanted to continue sleeping. Once she had stirred enough that he could be reasonably certain she was at least conscious, he bid her a good morning. The only thing he got in return was a miserable grunt, which was about par for the course.

    While Vandrad was a morning person, he knew well enough by now that Mercury was not. It always took her a while and at least one or two cups of coffee before she was ready to interact with the world. Granted this was only the second time he would have actually physically been present when she woke, and the first time had been a bit of an exception to her norm given the circumstances at the time, but he had trained with her enough in the mornings to have a fairly accurate idea of what to expect.

    Still, he explained to her that he was waking her up so she wouldn’t miss too much of the day, and so she could actually eat breakfast while it was still hot. The last thing on Mercury’s mind was food, but she grumpily rubbed the sleep out of her eyes anyway, doing her best to at least be a considerate guest if nothing else. Propping herself up on her shoulders with a weary expression, she blinked and looked around the room blankly before her eyes fell on Vandrad, sitting at the edge of the bed next to her. Mercury didn’t give him any odd or searching looks, still fighting back the deep desire to just roll over and go back to sleep.

    “It’s way too early for sane people to be awake,” she muttered at him without even checking the time, though clearly by the position of the sunlight coming through the windows it had to be fairly late in the morning. If she noticed him trying not to smirk, she didn’t mention anything. As he turned and looked at her bag, an odd scent caught her nose and she sniffed lightly, trying to locate the smell. It didn’t take very long, since the odor was coming from her shirt. Mercury lifted the collar up toward her face and gave it another sniff.

    That was weird. Why did she smell like Vandrad? Lavender brows furrowed in confusion briefly as she stared down at the article of clothing like it had just sprouted a pair of legs and walked away from her. However, she brushed her confusion off barely a second or two later. She probably just smelled like him because she’d slept in his bed.

    Of course, her tired brain had taken every ounce of focus available to her after first waking that Mercury didn’t quite catch everything Vandrad had said to her. “What..?” she asked stupidly, clearly needing him to repeat himself so her sleep addled brain could catch up. Once he had, and she’d made sure to actually pay attention, Mercury yawned wide, lazily covering her mouth with her hand. “I don’t own a bathing suit,” the Silver Wolf mage informed him sleepily, her voice groggy and raspy, even more so than he was used to.

    It would take some coaxing to get her out of bed, which she did even if she grumbled the whole time. Mercury practically dragged her bag over to the bathroom, her usual poise exchanged for a slouch-shouldered trudge as she begrudgingly brushed her hair and teeth and at least put on something that could be worn between Vandrad’s room and his mother’s wardrobe. Once there, she brainlessly snatched the first bathing suit that she saw, a black bikini that crossed over the top of her chest and had a lot of straps between the breasts and on the bottoms. The slayer didn’t even bother to look at herself in the mirror once it adjusted to fit her size, not giving a damn about anything but either going back to bed or locating a cup of coffee.

    She barely said a word the whole time, following Vandrad around like an abused puppy through the palace and out into the sunlight. Cursing the star’s existence, despite the energy it gave her, Mercury conjured a pair of sleek, dark tinted sunglasses and threw them moodily onto her face. Though they hid the annoyance in her eyes, the rest of her posture and visible facial features made it quite clear to everyone that she and mornings were not friends. She followed him to the pool area, a sight that normally would have greatly interested her were she more awake. Instead, only one thing caught her attention.

    Her nose sniffed the air at the delectible scent, and she turned her face to follow it, finding a buffet table set out with a number of food items, including… “Coffee…” Mercury could have made love to the pot right then and there, but instead she made a weary beeline toward it, picking up a mug and filling it as much as she could, leaving just enough room for a bit of cream. The rest of the food was forgotten for the time being as she stepped away practically cradling the hot cup to her chest like it was fine silk.

    Then, she wandered over to where everyone was lounging, sitting in the first available chair she saw. Slouching in the seat, the Silver Wolf mage barely took stock of who all from the du Wolff house was present, registering each familiar face only long enough to see if anyone was present that she didn’t know yet. “Morning…” Mercury murmured to them, the word half muffled by the process of her lifting the mug to her lips and starting to drink from it.

    WORDS: 1024/7667 | @Vandrad Ragnos
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Vandrad Ragnos
    Vandrad Ragnos

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Traveller of the Multiverse
    Position : None
    Posts : 435
    Guild : Fairy Tail
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 226,484

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Energy Monarch
    Second Magic: Ark of the Dread Masters
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Vandrad Ragnos 6th April 2020, 7:27 pm

    There’s no fair or unfair in battle.
    ( There is only victory or in your case, defeat. )
    Bonded Alloys RJtajUnz_o

    So this is what Mercury was like in the morning, or at least on mornings when she wasn’t realizing he didn’t remember sleeping with her.

    The sheer distaste she had for being woken up probably rivaled that of any time she did something intentionally to annoy him. She groaned as he touched her back and shook her gently, finally forcing her to roll over onto her back. The sharp look she gave the sunlight streaming in would have curdled dairy or a weaker man’s mojo. He said good morning to her and all he got back was a rebellious grunt. It was, at the very least, amusing to watch her with piss and vinegar at such a small task such as waking up. True they had been up rather late but she would still have gotten a full nine hours of sleep, which was more than most people got at all. Then again, there was no telling how many nights she had gone without sleep at all.

    Still, he waited patiently as she roused herself to something akin to consciousness before he spoke to her, informing her about breakfast. She groaned and forced herself up on her elbows to look around the room, perhaps just trying to get her eyes moving so sleep would leave them. By the time her gaze settled on him, it was with the beleaguered look of someone that certainly could flop back down and sleep for another two hours. And she commented as such, claiming it was far too early for fully functioning people to be starting their days. In spite of himself, he smirked. "Most people are awake and eating by eight. It’s after ten o’clock so one might say it’s on the later side,” he told her, trying his best not to sound too damn amused.

    But he was and he certainly sounded it. Turn around was fair play after all.

    As he looked towards her bag, he only halted enough to look back at her as she made the strangest, most confused face he had seen her wear. Her nostrils flared and she made a show of lifting the collar of her shirt up to her nose to smell it. Was she… smelling herself? She didn’t reek of anything, considering she had showered before bed. Maybe she was smelling his leftover scent from the bed. A small chill ran down his back as he wondered if she could simply smell him on her, from when they had spent the night cuddling. He waited for a beat to see if she would comment or ask him about it, even as she stared at her shirt like it was completely alien to her. But when nothing came of it, he continued and prodded her in terms of a swimsuit. She completely missed the first time he asked, having missed the query while caught in her own daydream. So he repeated it and got about the answer he was expecting.

    "Then I guess we’ll see what my mother’s wardrobe has to offer,” he said as he stood up, indicating that it was time to move. She resisted at first but after repeating that they should get downstairs for breakfast, she finally relented. Dragging her feet like she was hungover, she trudged over to the bathroom and took a quick moment to fix her hair and teeth before she changed into a sensible outfit for their walk through the halls. He kept glancing back at her as she slumped her way through the passages, the very symbol of a woman that would rather lie in bed all day than get up and move. It was greatly amusing and frankly, he could only imagine what the rest of his family would think.

    She didn’t spend a lot of time looking through the suits, grabbing the first one she managed to get her fingers around. She stripped down and put the suit on and simply started moving, not even waiting to see how it looked on her. Her shook his head, chuckling to himself as he led her back through the door and down a new path. Gods and she just dragged herself behind him, looking so abused and pathetic. It was even worse when they passed out the door to the yard, her face scrunching in hatred for the sun that gleamed down upon them. She created a pair of sunglasses to protect her eyes from its glare, while also hiding her squinted and annoyed features.

    The pool was massive, though that wouldn’t be a surprise at this point comparatively. While most pools were long in their own right, this one was a good twenty yards longer, equipped with two hot tubs on the shallow end portion. A line of reclining chaises filled the opposite side of the cement, seats enough for an entire party should there be need. A long table, draped in a white cloth, had been set up on the side closest to them, filled with all the fixings for breakfast.

    Themesycia was lounging on a chaise nearly right across from them, wearing a pair of thick black sunglasses as well as a tight one piece bathing suit that opened in an oval right over her chest, giving an ample view of her cleavage. Simon was sitting on the edge of the pool, himself in a form fitting pair of red speedos as he literally lounged near the pool. Cecilia and Ophelia were in the midst of swimming laps, each one in bikinis that matched the colors they wore to the gala the night before. Everance was walking over to lay down next to Themesycia, scantily clad in a two piece bikini that barely covered her body. And Dudley was stretching out near the end of the pool with Bartrand, the giant wearing black swimming trunks and the son wearing red swimming trunks.

    “Morning.”
    “Morning.”
    “Morning.”
    “What up badass.”
    “Morning.” The group greeted her, save for the twin sisters as they swam through the water. Mercury was far too focused on getting to coffee, the Silver Wolf mage stumbling over to the pot after grabbing a mug and filling it to the near brim. A chuckle passed between the family as they watched her focus on getting her caffeine fix, returning to what they were doing prior. Slowly Mercury shuffled over to the chaise and sat herself down on one, sinking into the chair as she nuzzled her drink for comfort.

    Themesycia was already getting up to walk on over, smirking and chuckling as she approached the woman. “Vandrad did mention you weren’t a morning person. I’m surprised you’re able to get up for his morning workouts at all,” she teased the younger woman as she sat down on the chaise next to her. Ever followed after to sit behind Themesycia on the same chair, the dark haired woman lying back while the Duchess simply sat with legs crossed. “You sure coffee is all you want right now? I’m sure we could fix one of the umbrellas over the chair so you can go back to sleep.”

    “Oh Themmy, be nice,” Ever said with a giggle, smacking her adoptive sister on the shoulder. “She’s up and drinking coffee. Just give her a bit to get herself situated and she’ll be fine.” A gleam of wickedness passed through her gaze briefly as she said in a lowered voice; “After all, she had a rowdy night,”

    “That she did,” Themesycia agreed with a deep grin. She turned her gaze over to Vandrad, who was filling his plate like a mountain with food. “Bathing suits only, Van; take that shirt off and participate with your family,”

    The Prince rolled his eyes as he finished compiling his meal. He walked over and sat at the closest table, placing the mountainous meal down before he unbuttoned his shirt and lazily threw it over the back of the chair. With a gesture towards it, to indicate he had abided her rules, he began digging in like an animal. As he did that, the twin girls pulled themselves out from the pool, giving their heads a quick shake to get most of the water out of their follicles. “Morning Mercury,” “Morning Mercury,” they said in tandem as they walked by, heading towards the food table themselves.

    “Alright son,” Dudley said in a booming voice. “Are you ready?”

    “Whenever you are, old man,” the younger man said with a grin. Each one of them got set on the edge of the pool then both jumped in, quickly paddling across the water in a race. Despite his larger frame, it was already obvious just how much faster Dudley was than his son.

    “Lovely day for a breakfast outside,” Ever commented as she glanced up towards the pure blue sky.

    “Yes, I have a feeling it’s going to be a lovely day,” Themesycia agreed, glancing at Mercury and giving her a quick wink.

    “VANNY-POOOOO!”

    The entire family stopped, including Dudley and Bartrand. Vandrad was mid-chewing a portion of pancake when the screech echoed over the winds, like nails raking down a chalkboard right next to his ear. All eyes turned to see the approaching princess of Midi, Sabine, clad in what could only be described as a bikini made of ribbons; see-through ribbons.

    Themesycia inhaled deeply through her nostrils, closing her eyes as she prepared herself. Then she stood up. “Princess Sabine, I believe I asked you to leave the premises by this morning,” she said cooly as she approached the princess.

    “My deepest apologies, Duchess Themesycia. After such a long travel from Midi, my wits were worn and were not about me. I have come here to apologize for my horrendous antics last night and wish to beg you a chance to stay and spend some time with Vandrad. I hope you’ll give me a chance to make up for my foul words from the gala -- I am so deeply ashamed by all I have said and done,” the princess said, practically throwing herself to her knees before Themesycia.

    The Duchess looked down at the young woman, a brow arched as she considered her. She turned her gaze slowly back towards Vandrad, his eyes wide as bulbs and with a face that read ‘dear god no’. After another beat, she turned her attention back to Sabine. “Well, at the very least, you may stay for breakfast. It would be rude of me to send you on the road without proper sustenance,” the Duchess said, her voice even and regal.

    “Ah, you are the most honorable woman I have ever met, Duchess Themesycia,” Sabine said, hopping up and giving the woman a deep bow. She then practically ran past her to Vandrad’s side, plopping down on the seat next to him and pulling it close enough that she was almost on his lap. “Hey Vanny. You look hot today.”

    Oh and Vandrad had such words to say to her. He was already chewing through his food furiously so he could let loose his opinions. But a glare from his mother stopped him, an unspoken conversation taking place between mother and son. Clearly on the losing side, the Prince sighed, his head dropping down slightly and then he continued eating, with Sabine wrapping her arms around his and clinging to him pathetically.







    Words: 1972 / 10,183 | Tag: @Mercury Arseneault | © marzia at shine & gs.


    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 376
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    Experience : 51,297

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 6th April 2020, 10:12 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    He was highly amused at her morning grumpiness, because of course he was. Even in her grouchy state, Mercury couldn’t fault him for it. Most people that were bears in the morning knew they were bears in the morning, and Mercury was no exception to that. There was just no talking to her until she had at least one, if not two full cups of coffee in her system. But Vandrad was going to take the time to sound entertained as fuck over her antics, and it was fair. She grunted and grumbled but didn’t stop him from doing it or lash out at him at all.

    The prince informed her it was after ten in the morning, which was around the time she woke up most days anyway. According to him, most people were up and eating breakfast by eight, which Mercury was absolutely certain beyond the shadow of a doubt was a lie. “Sociopaths, maybe,” was the only comment she mattered at him in response. But, soon she was up and out of bed, if begrudgingly, clad in a bathing suit, and following him outside toward a massive pool area.

    Everyone greeted her at once, far too chipper for the morning hour as far as she was concerned. A chuckle of mirth passed its way between them as she honed in on the pot of coffee, filling herself a piping hot cup before sitting down and muttering some semblance of a greeting. She had only gotten a couple sips into her drink before Themesycia and Everance  were moving closer to her, both of them sitting down on another lounge chair to converse with the woman. The duchess commented that Vandrad had warned them Mercury wasn’t a morning person, and after catching a glimpse at just how bad she was she was surprised the Silver Wolf mage even managed to get up in time for Vandrad’s training sessions.

    She went on to tease the younger woman, asking if coffee was all she wanted or if she could get her a chair with some shade so she could go back to sleep. Everance playfully chastised her sister, despite the fact that Mercury was seriously considering taking Themesycia up on that offer. The dark haired sibling reminded her that Mercury had a long night, the low tone of her voice suggestive and only loud enough for the ears of the present ladies. “You people are much to happy to be up and alert at this hour, and I hate you all for it,” Mercury informed them as she lounged back and held the mug to her chest. Her tone was dry, but the slight smirk on her lips betrayed the humor in the comment, as much as she truly believed that they had no right to be this rambunctious yet.

    Mercury steadily drank through the cup as Themesycia chastised Vandrad for wearing a shirt, and for a while things seemed like it would be a relatively pleasant morning, if mornings could ever be considered such. Mercury waved tirely to the twins when they came up for air during their laps to greet her. Dudley and Bartrand dove into the water for their own workout, and the two older du Wolff sisters seemed content to lounge with one another beside the surly Mercury, making idle chatter.

    But the whole world came to a halt when the screeching sound of a familiar voice raked through the air, causing Mercury to openly grimace at the horrific noise, clutching closer to her mug of joe like it would protect her. All eyes panned over in various degrees of shock to take in none other than the Midian Princess Sabine, who boldly greeted Vandrad by her own horrific nickname and strode up to the family. Mercury moaned quietly and resettled herself in her chair. “I didn’t pour myself enough coffee for this,” she muttered under her breath. Why was this waste of oxygen even still here?

    It seemed everyone was thinking that same question, though only the duchess herself asked it, reminding Sabine that her instructions had been to leave as early as possible that morning. While everyone else watched what was sure to be a show, Mercury appeared to be content continuing to sit back on her chaise drinking from her mug, her eyes unseen beneath her glasses and looking for all the world like she was still planning on falling back asleep. For all intents and purposes, she seemed to be the only one not all that bothered by Sabine’s presence, which may be surprising to those present since it was Sabine’s open insults and disrespect toward Mercury that had finally gotten her kicked out of the gala the night before and informed that the arranged marriage wasn’t going to work out.

    Yet there she was, the only one seemingly indifferent to the addition outside of her single, muttered comment from before. The truth was that Mercury just wasn’t awake enough to deal with it for the time being, but it wouldn’t be long before she was. Inspiration had struck her, however. With the bored flick of her wrist, Mercury conjured her iLac into her hand and started idly scrolling through it as she drank through the rest of her coffee. While people could assume that she was probably just checking daily updates on social media or news outlets, however, Mercury was actually busy using her technological advantage to look into the Midian princess to see what kind of dirt she could dig up on her.

    Once her coffee was done, she let out a happy sigh, already feeling a bit more awake. “There,” Mercury said, a relaxed, pleased smile on her face. “Now I can tolerate the world again. Though I’m probably going to need two cups after last night.” It was an innocent enough statement, but even as she moved to stand Mercury lowered her sunglasses enough to flash a knowing smirk at Themesycia and Everance. Then, she finally wandered back over to the buffet and got a plate of actual food to take back to her seat -- as well as said second cup.

    Bringing everything back, Mercury sat down once more, this time with noticeable more energy and spirit to her mannerism. “Forgive me for being a grump in the mornings,” she told Themesycia, and by default the rest of the relatives. “I’m useless without coffee. Honestly, it’s a wonder I have the wherewithal to get myself out of bed most mornings, let alone at Vandrad’s demanding hours for sparring.” It seemed a fairly innocent conversation, one whose tone held no demeanor of leading up to anything else. Despite this, her volume was just slightly louder than it necessarily needed to be, not to the point of being obnoxious but certainly enough that everyone present even only half paying attention would be able to hear her.

    “Though I have to say, it was especially difficult to get up this morning,” she started casually, pausing to take a small bite out of a piece of bacon and chew it softly, letting the tension built for all those who already knew her well enough to know she was about to draw an awful lot of attention to herself. Swallowing the bit of meat, Mercury turned to give Themesycia her full attention, she said, “Where did you get your furniture when you designed this palace, because Vandrad’s bed is so fucking comfortable. And huge. We seriously had so much space to work with when we retired, which was probably a good thing because he was all sorts of wound up from last night.”

    Mercury sighed dramatically. “I fear I may have made a monster out of your son. I was going to sneak out to try and get a little alone time with you or Simon, but he made it very clear that I would be thoroughly punished if I tried to do so. I get the impression he doesn’t want to share me.” Cutting a dainty bite off of her omelette, Mercury popped the morsel into her mouth and chewed it slowly, savoring every bite with the tiniest of smirks on her mouth as she waited to see if Sabine would take the bait. The princess claimed her apologies and had asked for a second chance to get to know Vandrad, but Mercury didn’t buy its sincerity.

    And to do Themesycia credit, she didn’t think the duchess bought it either. Mercury got the impression that the only reason the duchess had allowed Sabine to stay for breakfast was for her own reputation, rather than that of the princess. In the Xocili’s mind, however, that only made things worse. She was quite sure that the ribbon clad brat was just doing what she knew would force Themesycia into a corner to be cordial, and that wasn’t okay with Mercury. Though even she had to admit it took some balls to come back here the way she had, practically nude under her sheer spools of fabric to face the du Wolff clan and ask for a second chance after being utterly humiliated the night before.

    But if Sabine wanted to keep playing, Mercury was more than willing to call her bluff.

    WORDS: 1577/9244 | @Vandrad Ragnos
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Vandrad Ragnos
    Vandrad Ragnos

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Traveller of the Multiverse
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    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Energy Monarch
    Second Magic: Ark of the Dread Masters
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Vandrad Ragnos 7th April 2020, 10:41 am

    There’s no fair or unfair in battle.
    ( There is only victory or in your case, defeat. )
    Bonded Alloys RJtajUnz_o

    It was fairly normal for a princess to be able to bring an utter halt to a room. But for Sabine, she did it with such power that it was damn near unrivaled. Yet unlike other royal figures who did it with tact, influence and standards, the Midian woman simply got on people’s nerves enough that when she made an appearance, everyone shut up and stared at her, as if to ask ‘why the hell are you here?’

    And that’s exactly what she got from the du Wolff family as she came practically skipping over to Themesycia, surprisingly in a good mood considering the absolute embarrassment she had made of herself the night prior. She also apparently took the du Wolff’s intrigue into scandalous attire and affairs, as she came dressed near as naked as any one person could get with a bathing suit still technically on. Perhaps she had hoped that the sight of her, admittedly, fit body would draw attention from the travesty of the previous night’s antics. It did not, as Themesycia was quick to remind her that the Duchess had asked her to leave right away.

    Of course, Sabine fell into an apology rant that was about as genuine as her breast implants. Themesycia was no fool and saw this charade as a means of attempting some kind of plot to win Vandrad over. That or she simply wanted to find a way to get back at Mercury, who had been the focus of the drama at the ball. She supposed that she should stand her ground and insist the princess leave at that moment… but she had robbed both her son and the Silver Wolf mage of an opportunity the night before. She probably shouldn’t test those waters but she was morbidly curious to what Mercury would do to drive the princess insane. As an added bonus, it would give her even more reason to kick her out and cut off the contract with her father. Especially now that an inkling of an idea had wormed its way into her mind of who she truly believed Vandrad should be paired with.

    So instead, she let her stay for breakfast and supposedly for a bit longer. Sabine was thrilled that her apology, ruse or not, had gained her some trust and used that moment to rush over to Vandrad and attach herself to his arm. As the Duchess turned back and walked over to the pool’s edge, all the eyes of the family were on her. But they recognized the glint in her eye, even as she shot a look to her son and silently insisted he behave. There was promise of some wicked entertainment that simply would make their day even better. So they all went back to their routines, with the Duchess sliding back onto the chaise and making herself extra comfortable. Though no one stared outright -- save for Themesycia -- all eyes were on Mercury and Vandrad.

    The Silver Wolf mage had brought out her iLac and was scrolling through it idly, seemingly uninterested in the entire spectacle. As Vandrad finally managed to swallow the food in his mouth, Sabine rolled her tongue at him sensually. “You have so many muscles. Is there anywhere on your body that you’re not firm?” she asked him. Then she opted to roam her hand to try and find out.

    Vandrad stopped her by grabbing her wrist, his head turning slowly to look at her. He made sure not to grab her with the same strength he had last night -- he didn’t want to relive her grating screeches anymore than her voice already tore his eardrums to shreds. "Have some respect -- this is breakfast with my family,” he told her simply, letting her go after a half-hearted push of her arm away.

    “Oh such a spoil sport. That’s fine -- I’m sure we can find a nice dark corner later for me to check,” the princess cooed to him, reaching him and pinching his nose. A look of rage passed over the Prince’s face that quickly settled, if only under the orders of his mother. She had something planned and she didn’t want him to blow it up too soon. As much as he hated to admit it, he was curious to what she was aiming for as well.

    He didn’t have to wait long. With her mug now empty, Mercury seemed to be rejuvenated back to her normal self. Sabine hadn’t seemed to notice she was there until she spoke, her wide grin twitching at the sight of the Silver Wolf mage. Yet she kept it going strong, even as Mercury commented about needing two cups after the previous night’s events. Both Ever and Themesycia shared a look, smirking slightly as the true performance was just beginning. Dudley emerged from the waters of the pool, giving himself a shake and then posing dramatically in victory over his son. “You have a long way to go before you catch up to your old man, Bartrand!” the man said with a deep infectious laugh.

    “Yeah, yeah,” Bartrand responded as he leapt out of the pool and landed on the diving board in a squat. “I was a bit distracted,” he said, glancing over to Sabine.

    “Oh I’m so sorry! Is my suit too revealing? It was the only thing I had prepared,” she said, glancing down at her sorry excuse for a bikini. She took a moment to thrust her chest out and against Vandrad, another not-so-subtle attempt to showcase her ‘goods’.

    ]“... yeah, that was it,” the youngest member of the du Wolff clan said, rolling his eyes.

    By the time the short exchange was over, Mercury had brought herself back over to her seat, with a plate of food and more spirit in her step. She apologized for her mood in the morning, saying that coffee was really her only saving grace. She amusingly wondered how she was even capable of dragging herself out of bed to meet Vandrad every other morning for their sparring sessions -- a verbal note that certainly caught the Midian woman’s attention. Like a reel to an unknowing fish, she had bit at the hook and now she could be easily reeled in.

    Mercury would certainly get all the help she needed as well. “Ah I remember Themmy mentioning that. You meet up with him every other morning for training, isn’t that right?” Ever asked the leading question, crafting the story further.

    Mercury continued, admitting that she’d had one hell of a time waking up that morning. Vandrad’s brow rose as he started to catch on to what was happening. This is what his mother had planned? To use Mercury against Sabine in a means of driving her off? It was… well, genius, really. After the way that the Midian princess had spoken to the Silver Wolf mage last night, there was never a doubt that Mercury would want another crack at Sabine. But that also meant that he was a pawn within their game -- a tool and weapon that they could attempt to wield against one another. He sighed inwardly, understanding full well that this was not going to be a day of relaxation for him. At least he was somewhat prepared for it this time. Mercury had taken the time to bite into a piece of bacon and let the moment of revelation hang in the air, teasing everyone with what could have possibly waylayed her from waking up.

    After finishing her mouthful, she continued, asking Themesycia where she had gotten the furniture for the palace, specifically Vandrad’s bed. It had been so comfortable and huge and it had given them… wait what? Vandrad’s brow furrowed as she explained that they had needed the space because he had been, in her words, ‘wound up’. Was she implying that they had slept together again?! His jaw tightened but not nearly as hard as Sabine’s fingers on his arm, her nails pressing against his flesh hard enough to draw blood. Her smile was still present but her eyes were wide with… hell, she looked absolutely insane. As Mercury explained that she may have corrupted the Prince, revealing her intent to try and visit with Simon or Themesycia but being kept under grips by Vandrad’s desire to keep her to himself. It was a lofty, gambling lie and it had paid off.

    Sabine chuckled softly, a low and manic sound as she tried to keep herself in check. Themesycia glanced idly over before focusing back on Mercury, smiling all the while. “It is a shame. I had always hoped that Vandrad would hold onto his virginity until he found the perfect princess to marry. But alas, a man of his hunger apparently cannot be sated without release. And he has always had a lovely and tasteful eye; when he knows what he wants, he goes for it and hard. I’ve never had to concern myself over the stability of his bed frame before but it seems I may need to ensure it doesn’t go breaking,” she commented casually, reaching over to retrieve her sister’s glass of orange juice and taking a sip from it. “Especially if you plan to ensure he gets enough satisfaction up to his wedding. We can’t let a day go by or who knows what kind of shenanigans he could get into.”

    Both Ever and Themesycia chuckled at Vandrad’s expense, if only to rile Sabine up further. The Prince had been so dead set on listening to the woman’s words that he had somehow eaten everything on his plate. This, apparently, was an indicator for Dudley to walk over and clap the younger man on the back. “Excellent! You’ve had your full meal. I was waiting patiently for you to finish. You know what that means, right?”

    Vandrad’s attention instantly snapped over to his uncle, remembering. "Are you implying a spar?”

    “What else? You’ve been gone for months now -- I want to see if Fiore has made you any softer!” the mustachioed man said with a laugh.

    “Oh hell yeah!” Bartrand said, hopping to his feet. “Dad thinkin’ about the important things! I call first dibs.”

    “Now, now Bartrand -- I was the one that brought it up. It’s only right that I have a go at Vandrad first.” He turned and faced his wife and sister-in-law, as well as Mercury. “Any interest, ladies?”

    “Oh it is far too early for me to do any of that,” Ever said, waving her hand at him.

    “Possibly,” Themesycia said, tapping her finger against her chin. “We shall see.”

    “Alright then,” Ophelia said, cracking her knuckles. With a wave of her hand, metal erupted from her palm and coalesced over the pool, creating a shiny platform of steel. “There’s your stage.”

    “And here’s the shielding,” Cecilia said, waving both of her hands up as she crafted an invisible bubble of magical energy around the pool.








    Words: 1895 / 12,078 | Tag: @Mercury Arseneault | © marzia at shine & gs.


    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 376
    Cosmic Coins : 0
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    Experience : 51,297

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 7th April 2020, 3:33 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    It was just sad the way that Sabine immediately flounced over to Vandrad and flopped herself down next to him, hanging on his arm like the blushing bride she surely thought she still had the chance to be. The half awake Mercury that had zero filter audibly snorted at Sabine’s awful attempt to flirt with the prince, not making the noise so loud as to actively draw attention to herself but certainly not trying to hide it, either. The woman was absolutely clueless, to the point where it was almost physically painful to witness. Poor Vandrad.

    Mercury seemed to mind her own business for the most part, finishing her coffee and getting up to finally get some food while the rest of the family continued about their morning as normal as they could with the scantily clad elephant on the deck. The energy in the air was high. Everyone was waiting for a show. Mercury could feel their eyes on her and Vandrad, wondering who was going to speak up first, and the Silver Wolf mage was content to let them wait as she bided her time patiently, wanting to lull Sabine into a false sense of security. Though frankly, it really didn’t even seem like the other woman had realized Mercury was there yet.

    Which made it all the better when she’d spoken up and Sabine’s gaze twitched in her direction, faltering only briefly enough for Mercury to pick up the change in pulse in the other woman’s body. But the slayer didn’t openly target her yet, oh no. That would end things much too quickly, and she had been dead seriously the night before when she’d told Bartrand that her revenge on Sabine would have been more traumatic emotionally than anything else. She didn’t want to just hurt the Midian princess, she wanted to break her spirit into little pieces. Work like that took time to build up to.

    To Mercury’s credit, she actually didn’t intend on using Vandrad as the driving point for the verbal torture she had planned. Really, she would only use him as the bait to draw the other woman in closure and get her riled up enough to let her true nature show like it had last night. After that, Mercury was intent on using things outside of the prince to decimate Sabine, things the woman wouldn’t see coming. But Mercury had to start some place that she knew would be effective, and using Vandrad was the easiest and most assured way to make that happen.

    So she started off with her innocent comments referencing their morning routines together and laying the groundwork for what was to come. Everance picked up on the lead immediately, which was no surprise, casually adding to it with the confirmation of just how much time Vandrad and Mercury spent with one another. “Yes, he was quite insistent,” she informed the dark haired woman. “I wasn’t given a choice in the matter, in fact. But I can’t complain too much. It keeps me active.”

    Mercury continued on immediately after that, getting into the parts that were sure to drive Sabine wild, manipulating truths from the night before to make it sound like she and Vandrad had slept together again after the gala was over. Vandrad made no attempt to correct the insinuation, which Mercury could only assume meant that he was also interested in seeing where this conversation was going to lead and hoping that it resulted in Sabine’s complete and utter humiliation. Again.

    The Silver Wolf mage kept her focus on Themesycia and Everance, appearing for all the world like Sabine’s presence barely registered to her. Her eyes were watching the woman through her dark sunglasses though, and she could see exactly how crazed the woman already was. It was like Mercury had set fire to a house of kerosine. Too easy, she thought to herself smugly as Sabine loosed a dark and nutty laugh. Mercury coolly pretended not to hear it, too busy taking another long sip from her second coffee cup even as Themesycia spoke up to fan the flames. She commented about how Vandrad really should have waited until marriage, but there was only so much that could be done to stay him when he knew what he wanted. Still, the duchess mused that she would have to make sure the man’s bed was up to the task of handling illicit activities while he was still allowed to have them before marriage.

    “I wise idea,” she told the older woman soberly, nodding her agreement. Mercury was about to find another avenue to steer the conversation when Dudley noticed that Vandrad had finished his food and broached him about a spar session. Before they knew it, the men were all ready to throw punches at one another and another seed of an idea had planted itself in Mercury’s still semi-tired mind. Dudley invited the ladies to see if any of them were interested in joining them. Everance declined, claiming that it was much too earlier for that kind of thing. Themesycia gave a solid maybe. Mercury, on the other hand, said, “Come back to me after I finish this,” holding up her mug with a grin. “Once I’m awake I could be talked into it. Still a little stiff from getting stood up at yesterday morning’s training.”

    Sadly, as much as she voiced the sentiment in jest, it was actually quite true. In the few weeks since she and Vandrad had started actively training together, Mercury’s body had adjusted to the norm of getting a heavy workout every other morning. She was started to see the merit in the man’s nighttime routine to keep himself limber, wondering if she was going to have to start adopting something similar. The thought was exhausting.

    Ophelia used her magic to craft a fighting stage for them over the pool, just as Cecilia erected a barrier around it that would keep their magic energy from effecting anyone off the stage. As the men made their way over, Mercury waved to Sabine, who was left sitting by herself. “Come, your highness,” she told the woman, her tone surprisingly friendly and genuine as she deferred to the woman by her rank. “No need to isolate yourself by your lonesome. If you intend to win Vandrad over, it's good to know the other women in his life. Why don’t you join us ladies over here and enjoy the show, hrm? Come see what the prince is made of. I think you’ll like it.”

    Mercury patted the end of her chaise, inviting Sabine to share her long seat much like Everance and Themesycia were doing, shifting her position to leave plenty of room for the other woman. She even removed her sunglasses and tucked them onto one of the straps between the cleavage of her own suit, so Sabine could see Mercury’s gaze and the seeming lack of ill intent within it. Presuming she came over, the Silver Wolf mage continued to speak to her like someone who earnestly wanted to patch things between them, openly addressing the obvious tension. “I know we got off on the wrong foot yesterday. I have to admit that I’m impressed by your bravery in coming here this morning to try to fix things, despite knowing that Lady du Wolff had every right to kick you to the curb. It’s admirable. Why don’t we try to start over? Tell me a bit about Midi, and your family. I’ve never been there before. What are some of the highlights of your culture that you would describe to attract a potential tourist?”

    WORDS: 1297/10,541 | @Vandrad Ragnos
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Vandrad Ragnos
    Vandrad Ragnos

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Traveller of the Multiverse
    Position : None
    Posts : 435
    Guild : Fairy Tail
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 226,484

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Energy Monarch
    Second Magic: Ark of the Dread Masters
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Vandrad Ragnos 7th April 2020, 8:16 pm

    There’s no fair or unfair in battle.
    ( There is only victory or in your case, defeat. )
    Bonded Alloys RJtajUnz_o

    Sabine was… handling herself rather well, considering. Granted, she had the look of a woman that was about ready to murder everyone with an ax but she didn’t -- choosing to stare wide-eyed and with a plastered grin at Mercury, Themesycia and Ever. She chuckled a bit wildly, a testament to just how bothered she was while also trying to keep herself in check. It was perhaps a true saving grace that Dudley had stepped up and offered a different activity rather than torturing the woman, though that wasn’t out of any kindness in his heart for the princess. If anything, he was doing his best to give Vandrad some room from the Midian woman.

    And the Prince was more than happy to take it. "Happily,” he stated to his uncle’s offer, prying himself loose from Sabine’s grip. He wiped away the small trace of blood that had formed from her fingernails as Dudley asked the women gathered if they’d be interested as well. Themesycia would consider it and it seemed that Mercury would as well, claiming that she was still a bit stiff from not getting her workout the previous morning. Vandrad snorted, casting a glance at her. "Stiff from being stood up yesterday? Or perhaps too worn from last night?” He gave a wicked smirk, even as Sabine’s fingers scratched on the surface of the table. If they were going to commit to this plot, then he was all in. Anything to get rid of the idiot woman.

    But that was all he offered to the conversation, as he walked over to the metal platform that had been crafted for them. Dudley took his place across from the Prince, chuckling as he rolled each of his arms. “I’m impressed you’re so eager, Vandrad. Perhaps a little test of your strength before we get into it then? I’d hate to break your hand with one punch like last time,” the man said genuinely, flexing his fingers.

    Vandrad snorted. "Bring it on, old man. You might be surprised what you find,” the Prince stated as he slid his feet open, taking a slight battle stance.

    “Ah shit, Van’s gonna get his arm busted open again,” Bartrand said as he flopped onto the chaise next to Themesycia and Ever.

    “Cecilia, honey… you may want to have your healing spells ready,” Simon called out to his daughter as he lazily lay himself down on another chaise, getting quite comfortable.

    “Already on it, dad,” the blind girl said sweetly.

    Sabine was watching intently, trying to forget the conversation from before. But her attention was pulled away as Mercury called out to her, offering her the opportunity to sit with the rest of them. After all, as the Silver Wolf mage stated, it would do her good to get to know the woman in Vandrad’s life better if she wanted to have any hope of winning his heart. On the one hand, she wanted absolutely nothing to do with the hussy or her advice. But on the other, she seemed quite ingrained with the rest of the family and perhaps getting on her side would aid her. “Of course. I would love to,” she replied sweetly, practically floating out of her seat and over to the chaise, placing herself on the end of Mercury’s chaise.

    It was then that Dudley launched himself at Vandrad, closing the distance between them in one large step. A massive fist came swinging around at the Prince, ready to slam into him with all the literal gigantic strength Dudley possessed. Vandrad’s own fist came soaring up to meet it, like a fly trying to press back against the swatter. It was a sight that the du Wolffs had seen time and time again and each time, it had not ended well for Vandrad. Imagine all of their surprises when the Prince’s fist slammed knuckle to knuckle with the giant’s and halted it right in its place, their folded fingers pressing against one another.

    “Well how about that…?”
    “Holy shit!” Ever and Bartrand said in surprise, the young man jumping to his feet and standing on the chaise. Simon looked floored, leaning up from his position as well. Themesycia, in spite of herself, was smirking with all the pride a mother could possess.

    “Well, well!” Dudley said with a boisterous laugh. “It looks like your time in Fiore has been well spent! It is safe to say that Mercury has helped you find some inner strength!”

    Vandrad snickered. "You haven’t seen anything yet,” he said simply, digging his heels into the metal.

    “Indeed? Well then -- push me back, Van! Give me all you have!” It seemed they were intent to stay locked in this position until one or the other gave way.

    A perfect opportunity for Mercury to turn to Sabine, glasses pulled away, and give her an ‘earnest’ extension of friendship. While it was, in a way, a means of trying to patch things up, the Silver Wolf mage didn’t exactly go about it in the most modest of terms, choosing to speak to the princess as bluntly as she would anyone. This, of course, infuriated the Midian woman but she held that back behind a very fake, very wide smile for the sake of earning brownie points. “Oh, Midi is truly a lovely country. Far superior to plenty of these other low-brow, civilian nations that exist in this world of ours. If you are looking for a place to truly get a full experience, I highly recommend the Emperor’s Palace during the Cherry Blossom Blooming Festival. All of our cultural practices are out in full and it is quite the tourist experience. A few lucky people are even picked out to dine and drink with the Emperor himself. I don’t know if you’ve ever heard of bushido as well but there are tournaments between some of the best swordmages in our kingdom during the festival as well.” Though she could have offered any means of inaccurate advice, it was clear that Sabine did truly take pride in her country. The question was too intriguing to use it as a weapon against Mercury, choosing instead to offer her genuine advice.

    Over on the sparring ground, Vandrad’s strength was starting to waver. Slowly his arm was being pushed back, the massive fist of Dudley getting closer and closer by every inch. His jaw was clenched tight as he tried to dig deep and find any lingering strength from within. His uncle’s chuckles echoed in his ears, mocking him, teasing him for the eventual punch that would plant itself against his entire body. Then… something happened. Crimson black electricity burst to life around his stressed limb, racing down the length towards his fist. It moved so swiftly that he almost didn’t spot it, nor did he truly feel it until it dove into his hand and out of sight. Then his fist was launching forward, pushing back against the larger one and as his arm fully extended, a pulse of magic erupted from his knuckles.

    Dudley was sent skidding back over the metal plate, onto the cement that surrounded the pool and finally onto the grass behind it. If the du Wolffs had been surprised before, they were utterly floored now. Bartrand’s mouth hung completely agape along with Simon’s. Ever had shifted up to a sitting position, a mixture of surprise and curiosity etched into her features. Themesycia though; there was no amusement on her face. She looked downright concerned over what she had just seen. Her eyes narrowed slightly behind her sunglasses, her body suddenly tight and rigid.

    “Does… does that mean Vanny won?” Sabine asked, breaking the tense moment by looking around at the family.

    “Hell yeah it does!” Bartrand said, leaping off the chaise. “You see that, pop? He knocked you back farther than anyone else!”

    Dudley chuckled, even as he looked at his fist. Scorch marks adorned his knuckles, still steaming from the impact of… well, whatever that had been. “Quite. You’ve gotten stronger, Vandrad. I’m impressed… and proud.”

    Vandrad was at a lost for words himself. He looked down at his own fist, all signs of the mysterious energy pulse gone. What had that been, he wondered quietly in his own mind. Slowly glancing up, he gave his uncle a soft nod in recognition to the compliment.

    “Alright, that means it’s my turn!” Bartrand said, leaping off the ground and dramatically front-flipping through the air to land on the metal plate. His magic surged to life, literally making his hair glow bright and flow like it was a flame. “No strength tests here, Van. I want you Empowered.”

    Empowerment -- he had forgotten that none of them had seen its new level. After a moment, the Prince activated the spell, his hair and eyes quickly changing over to a deep crimson color. Even since their battle with the sea serpent, Vandrad had found it easy to connect to the new level, now that he understood where it came from.

    “What the hell? Where’s the blond?” Bartrand asked, cocking his head.

    Finding his arrogant grounding again, Vandrad snorted and smirked. "This is a new level… far stronger than the other. You’ll understand the difference after I hit you with it.”

    Bartrand grinned wickedly as flames ignited in his hands. “Oh coz, you know just how to dirty talk me!” And with that, he rushed in to attack the Prince.








    Words: 1646 / 13,724 | Tag: @Mercury Arseneault | © marzia at shine & gs.


    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 376
    Cosmic Coins : 0
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    Experience : 51,297

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 7th April 2020, 10:38 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    Mercury grinned at Vandrad as he opted to comment on her statement about being stiff from her lack of morning workout, looking for clarification on if it was because of that or because of how worn she was from the night before. “Does it matter? Either way it’s your fault,” she told him innocently, smirking at him over the lip of her coffee mug.

    The du Wolffs were pretty set on Vandrad being out of his league in this spar, which either meant that they were underestimating his growth or that Dudley was simply that strong. It could have been the latter pretty easily. The giant was even more muscled than Vandrad himself, and Mercury had experienced a small portion of that last night at the bar when the large man had lifted her up into a hug. She found herself quite curious to see what this fight was going to lead to, to see what she might learn about his family from it.

    But first, she had a game to play. The sparring was a secondary objective, the first was Sabine. The princess agreed to the invitation, gathering herself up and gracing her way over to where the rest of the ladies sat -- if one could call it gracing. She even had the courage to take the offered seat at the end of the bench Mercury was using, sharing the long seat with the woman. And as Mercury geared herself up for her game play, the two men began to fight. Dudley requested some kind of test of Vandrad’s strength and the two of them each threw a fist at one another.

    While everyone else present seemed ready and braced for the prince to have his arm splintered, the Silver Wolf mage was the only one who didn’t appear shocked when Vandrad’s fist stopped Dudley’s in its tracks. “That bum,” Mercury chuckled, her teasing voice only loud enough for Sabine and the audience to hear so that she wouldn’t distract the two combatants. “He’s not even giving it his all. What a slacker.”

    As the men continued their little standoff, Mercury made her move to open a line of conversation with Sabine about her home country. She wasn’t exactly shy about the way she broached the topic and about their history the night before, which obviously irritated the other woman. But, to her credit Sabine held her forced smile and answered the question honestly, more than willing to do her country justice as Mercury figured she would. Mercury didn’t miss the way the princess referred to “these” other countries as lesser, which rather openly suggested that Bellum was among such places that she considered inferior. Yet one more mark on the mental tally that Mercury was keeping in her head.

    But still, she listened politely, giving Sabine her attention as the other woman explained that the palace of their emperor was the best spot for a tourist to visit if one wanted to get the full experience of all the wonders Midi had to offer, particularly during something called a cherry blossom festival. There was all sorts of cultural displays during that time, she said, including sword fighting tournaments, and sometimes the emperor himself chose to dine with a lucky guest. “I’ve never heard of bushido, no, but I do appreciate talented swordplay. I’ll have to look it up some time.”

    It was around that time that there was a bit of a shift in the standoff between Vandrad and Dudley, the latter of which was starting to push the prince back. Mercury could sense his energy wavering in the face of his uncle’s. “Oi! You gonna stop playing around with the man?” she called out to Vandrad, sounding thoroughly unimpressed with the way Dudley seemed to be overwhelming him as though she knew he were better than that. “Stop holding back. No one likes a show off.” Mercury didn’t believe for one second that Vandrad was going to let himself be overtaken by his uncle. Everything she’d witnessed of him through their interactions thus far had proven that the prince was at his most dangerous and capable when seemingly backed into a corner. Sometimes he just needed a little shove, and her nettling him usually did the trick.

    But then something different happened. Suddenly Vandrad’s arm was coated in red and black electricity, causing Mercury’s head to tilt in curiosity. It happened so quickly that she might not have spotted it at all if it weren’t for the fact that she was connected to the element. She said nothing, electing not to draw attention to it just in case she had been the only one that noticed, but the result was spectacular. Dudley’s giant for was sent flying across the palace grounds, off the platform and past the poolside patio into the grassy field that lay beyond. Mercury’s head turned along with everyone else to watch the man fly back, but unlike everyone else she didn’t appear as shocked by the outcome. She recovered quicker than the others, lifting the mug to her lips with a grin at their surprise and casually remarking, “There’s the Vandaddy I know.”

    Sabine requested confirmation as to whether or not Vandrad had won, to which Bartrand practically leapt out of his skin with excitement to exclaim that he had. Dudley seemed impressed and even said as much, shaking his scorched hand and telling the smaller man that he was proud of his growth. Vandrad seemed thoroughly confused, looking down at his fist studiously. Mercury was also very curious as to what had just happened, she just hid it better for the sake of company and not putting him on the spot.

    Thankfully, the awkward moment was pushed aside by Bartrand demanding his turn, flipping onto the stage and demanding to fight Vandrad fully powered. Mercury chuckled merrily at the request. She didn’t know how strong the younger cousin was, but she did know that Vandrad had grown more powerful by leaps and bounds since she’d met him, and that he hadn’t seen his family during that time to showcase his newer form of empowerment. Indeed, Bartrand was quite confused, opening questioning where the blonde haired look was.

    And his his typical fashion, Vandrad merely smirked with his trademark arrogance and teased the lad with promises of the new form being much stronger than the one Bartrand knew. Which wasn’t a lie. Luckily, Bartrand seemed to be into such things, and wasted no time in starting the fight.

    Mercury conjured her metal box of cigarettes into her hand, holding it up to Themesycia. “Do you mind?” she asked the older woman, not wanting to smoke on her property if the duchess would have an issue with it. Presuming she didn’t, she would take out a cigarette before offering one to anyone present that might be interested, including Sabine. In fact, her gaze locked evenly on the other woman as if to challenge her and see if the Midian would continue to try and fit in by taking one. She didn’t strike Mercury as a smoker, and the idea that the woman might choke on the first drag was highly entertaining to her. The Silver Wolf mage would offer to light cigarettes for any who would need it, using her thumb to casually light the sticks as her unseen magic deposited just a bit of grease to the tips and setting them to flame with a tiny jolt of lightning.

    “Anyway, where were we?” Mercury asked, putting the box away and looking to get back on topic for the lovely conversation she and Sabine had been having. “Ah yes, Midi. Now, help me understand this: Midian nobility operates off of some kind of… caste system, right? Everything’s sort of determined by how close people are to the emperor, based on their prestige and wealth within the culture? Where’s your family at in all that?” She brought up the subject so casually, her emerald gaze so innocent that one might at first mistake her for truly being ignorant on the matter.

    But she was not, oh no. The research she had done on Sabine and her family a bit ago revealed that the Hotoi clan was pretty low on the totem pole, not quite all the way at the bottom but far down enough that it was surely a sore spot. Mercury played the part of an uninformed foreigner perfectly, posing the question to Sabine in a way that would force the woman to have to describe how embarrassingly unimportant her family was in the grand scheme of Midian politics. With her unwavering, too friendly gaze set on the woman to watch her answer, she took a long drag from the cigarette and blew the smoke out mostly in the direction of Sabine’s face.

    WORDS: 1501/12,042 | @Vandrad Ragnos
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Vandrad Ragnos
    Vandrad Ragnos

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Traveller of the Multiverse
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    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Energy Monarch
    Second Magic: Ark of the Dread Masters
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Vandrad Ragnos 8th April 2020, 3:08 pm

    There’s no fair or unfair in battle.
    ( There is only victory or in your case, defeat. )
    Bonded Alloys RJtajUnz_o

    It was quite a shock to see how well Vandrad countered his uncle -- a feat that no one had managed to accomplish truly ever. The giant’s strength was exactly that and generally, it was unrivaled even without any magical boosters. Yet here stood his nephew, fist grinding against fist without any sign of breaking or pain. It was doubly remarkable that Mercury, amusingly, commented that he was barely even digging deep to use his full strength. “So he has gotten this strong in such a short amount of time… Perhaps we all should take a vacation in Fiore,” Ever remarked after the Silver Wolf, smiling softly.

    If that wasn’t awe-inspiring enough, there was also the fact that Mercury and Sabine seemed to be having a somewhat cordial conversation. Granted, it was all a part of the ruse that the two women both seemed to be playing with one another, acting mannerly for the sake of gaining some kind of advantage. After Sabine had spoken of her country’s magnificence, Mercury admitted she hadn’t heard of the fighting style but did appreciate sword fighting. Themesycia chuckled softly. “Bushido is an ancient Midian code of honor that their fighters embody. Eight Virtues make up their code; Justice, Courage, Mercy, Politeness, Honesty and Sincerity, Honor, Loyalty and finally Character and Self Control. It is a fantastical philosophy based on the hope of chivalry in an age when suc things don’t exist. But there is no doubt that the sword practices within bushido are effective; I, myself, trained in the art if only to better understand my enemies,” she explained, idly casting a glance at Sabine before focusing back on the match up of strengths.

    Mercury yelled out to Vandrad, drawing half of his attention temporarily as she told him to stop playing around. She even insisted that no one liked a show off. Blasted woman, he thought to himself, this is hardly the time to mock me.

    Sabine frowned. “I’m sure he’s trying his hardest. Even I know that Commander Dudley’s strength is…” But before she could finish, Vandrad’s miraculous boost of strength sent the giant sliding back off the battleground, surprising them all. As no rules had been set down in terms of what was considered a loss, she spoke up to ask if the Prince had, in fact, won. Bartrand took it upon himself to declare Vandrad the winner, earning compliments from both his cousin and his uncle a moment later. “What a man…” the Midian princess purred, eyeing up Vandrad like he was candy in a window. She was so caught up in her own fantasy that she didn’t even hear Mercury’s words.

    Then it was Bartrand’s turn to hop into the fray, igniting himself on fire. As Vandrad smoothly transitioned to his new Empowered form, he took pride in the shock that came from the rest of his family, especially his new sparring partner. But the crimson fire wasn’t enough to scare his cousin away, who dove right in and started to fight for all his worth.

    As they battled back and forth -- or rather, as Vandrad swiftly moved around strikes thrown at him -- Mercury pulled out a box of cigarettes and asked Themesycia if it was a problem if she smoked. “Not at all, darling. I wish I’d had a pack last night,” she said with laugh, an innocuous statement that was just innocent enough to keep away suspicion. She took one when it was offered, twirling it between her fingers and smelling it gently while Ever and Sabine turned down the offer, with the younger princess looking utterly disgusted at the sight of such things. It seemed she had no desire to rise to the challenge of fitting in here, far more comfortable to judge the Silver Wolf mage and the Duchess for the death sticks in between their fingers.  Themesycia leaned over to have her cigarette lit, inhaling the first puffs to set the flame and then loosed a thick plume of smoke that she expertly managed to craft into a flowing wave. Then she focused her attention on the fight, though truly most of her attention was on Mercury and Sabine. She already knew the outcome between Bartrand and Vandrad -- she didn’t know how the younger woman was going to nettle the Midian woman further. That seemed far more entertaining.

    Sabine scooched closer to the edge of the chaise, wanting to keep herself as far away from the smoke proximity as possible. She tried to turn her attention back to Vandrad but was interrupted yet again by Mercury, who still had questions about Midi -- this time focusing on her family. As the Silver Wolf mage intricately broke down the caste system of the country, she turned her attention to Sabine’s family, inquiring to where they stood in the realm of favoritism with the Emperor. Her smile twitched slightly, enough to show that the topic was… tender. She swallowed hard before giggling softly. “Oh my family is in quite the perfect position. We’re perceived far below where we belong and our aim is to rise above those assumptions, utilizing all of our resources we have on hand and more. My family looks to gain quite a lot with what we have in store.” Her weak but willful explanation could be equated to a fish flopping rebelliously against the dry land in hopes of magically creating water. She spoke of the Hotoi clan as if it was some underdog regime that was one lucky break away from ruling over all of Midi. And perhaps if she had been better prepared for the question, she could have sold that… or if Mercury hadn’t already looked up information pertaining to the family and found out the truth.

    A thud shook the pool area as Vandrad slammed Bartrand into the steel plate, planting his foot on his back and holding a single arm up, pinning him. His brilliant aura continue to billow around him as he looked down at his cousin, smirking. "I don’t remember the differences between our strengths being so vast, Bartrand. Have you been slacking?” he mocked the younger man.

    Bartrand grinned, despite his precarious situation. “Hey, I’m not the one taking Fioran steroids to get stronger,” he teased back, grimacing slightly from his arm being ajar. “Alright, uncle,” he relented and Vandrad released him, his Empowerment fading from his body. “You ain’t no joke, Van,” the younger man said, rolling his arm.

    "Well, I’ve been lucky enough to find suitable measures of strength,” he said, glancing quickly over at Mercury before focusing his attention back on Bartrand.

    But his cousin noticed the look and grinned. “Is that so?” he asked, chuckling as he turned to face the rest of the family. “Hey badass chick, how about we go a round, one on one? I bet you’re even tougher to crack than Van here.”

    Before Mercury could answer, Sabine chuckled and cleared her throat. “Oh, that’s so kind of you to say but I wouldn’t say that I’m--”

    “Yeah, I said badass chick, not thirsty chick. The only thing strong about you are those ribbons trying to keep your sagging tits from flopping against your stomach,” Bartrand replied, not even bothering to look over at Sabine’s utterly shocked face.

    “Bartrand,” Ever spoke up dangerously, giving her son a look. “Language,” she warned him… and that was it. She seemed far more bothered by his blunt language than the subject matter that he had blatantly spoke of in such a condescending way.

    “Right, right,” he said, practically waving the woman off. “Anyway, what d'ya say?” He asked Mercury again, wagging his eyebrows.







    Words: 1338 / 1338 | Tag: @Mercury Arseneault | © marzia at shine & gs.


    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 376
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 51,297

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 8th April 2020, 5:21 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    Mercury grinned at Everance. “Well, if you do decide to come to Fiore for a while, you should consider visiting my guild. We’re located over a natural hot spring in the mountains, so Silver Wolf is set up like a spa. Visitors are always welcome.”

    She listened with genuine interest as Themesycia described the edicts of Bushido to her, explaining that the duchess herself had studied the art in the interest of knowing her enemies better. “Very wise,” the Silver Wolf mage said, nodding in agreement. Though a slight pang of… something… turned in her stomach. It didn’t reach her eyes, but it was enough for her to feel in herself. She understood the sentiment more than any of them would understand. After all, that was her whole objective here on Earthland: to study an enemy and feed information about them back to those over her command.

    Did that include the du Wolffs..?

    Not liking that train of thought, she shook herself from it and moved along, electing instead to pick on Vandrad a little. Sabine attempted to speak up on Vandrad’s behalf, but before she could finish Dudley was sent soaring across the way. The Midian princess suddenly starting eyeing the prince like he was a salt lick before a cow, commenting on how manly he was. “Eh, he’s alright,” Mercury said in a playful tone, a small grin on her face as she finished off the last of her second cup of coffee.

    The sparring shifted gears with Bartrand picking up against his cousin, even as Themesycia and Mercury decided to have a cigarette. Everance politely turned down the offer while Sabine made no effort to display her disgust for the practice, even going so far as to scoot a little further away from them in a futile attempt to get out of the cloud. Mercury posed her question, leading into the lowly status of Sabine’s family which caught the princess by surprise. Her answer was shaky at best as she desperately tried to find a way to paint her family in a better light, attempting to spin it off as an opportunity to make a name for themselves.

    Without missing a beat, Mercury gave her a faux concerned expression. “Oh, I’m sorry. Was that a rude question?” she asked, as though it had only just occurred to her that it might have been a sensitive topic. “You just carry yourself with such high regard, I assumed you had to be someone important. Though I suppose if that were the case, you would have been married off long ago to someone whose family didn’t hail from ‘inferior, low-brow, civilian nations’ like Bellum. Guess that’s what I get for making snap judgements about someone’s station. How embarrassing of me.”

    Her emerald gaze held Sabine’s with such smoldering intensity it was a wonder the ribbon clad woman didn’t catch on fire. Mercury’s mirthless smirk did nothing to hide her smug pride over not just insulting the woman but also calling her out on both the way she had insulted the du Wolffs and their country earlier and for the way she had elected to treat and speak to Mercury like some kind of second class citizen at the gala the night before. Well, knives often cut two ways, and Mercury was more than willing to put the woman in her place. Clearly, no one else ever had in her life.

    Surely when the tension was about to pop, there was a shuddering thud as Vandrad slammed Bartrand into the steel platform, pinning his arm behind him. The prince taunted the younger man a bit, who took it in great stride, teasing him back before finally admitting defeat. After a bit of banter between the two of them, Bartrand decided he was ready for his next opponent: Mercury. He commented openly about wanting to see how she fought, expressing his thoughts that she would be even harder to beat than Vandrad.

    But before Mercury could say anything, Sabine spoke up as though the question had been directed at her. The princess started to deflect, but Bartrand -- clearly the least subtle of his relatives -- interrupted her to state outright that she was not the person he’d been talking to, referring to her as thirsty before insulting her ridiculous outfit and her breasts in one fell swoop. The snort escaped Mercury’s nose before she could do anything to stop it, not that she really wanted to. Her shoulders twitched with the effort it took from laughing outright.

    Taking only a second to compose herself, mostly, she grinned at the young man. “Well, we can’t let Vandrad have all the fun now, can we? Alright, slugger, you’re on.” Leaving Sabine with the rest of the clan, Mercury stood and made her way up to the platform, giving Simon a playful wink as she passed. Once she was up, she wandered over to Vandrad and took one last draw from her cigarette before offering it to him with a very self pleased grin that betrayed just how much fun she’d been having at Sabine’s expense this entire time. “Be a dear and finish this for me, would you? I’d hate to waste it.”

    For good measure, she would slap his ass playfully as he walked off before turning to square off against his cousin. Much like Vandrad was used to, Mercury’s stance appeared to be much more relaxed than it actually was. Or at least, it did to the untrained eye. She had spent her whole life mastering the art of portraying herself as unassuming, though certainly a fair number of those in the family would probably be able to read right through it. A small smirk flashed toward Bartrand as she said, “Go easy on me, handsome. My magic is still new to me. I’m much more comfortable with my weapon.”

    It was clear she was teasing him, despite the truth of her words. Mercury didn’t actually want Bartrand to go easy on her. If anything, she was inviting him to do the opposite. It was her way, which Vandrad was more than used to at this point. However, she had read enough of Bartrand to know that he would happily be the one to get the fight started, so she waited patiently for him to come at her, emerald eyes glistening with mischief at him.

    WORDS: 1090/1090 | @Vandrad Ragnos
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Vandrad Ragnos
    Vandrad Ragnos

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Traveller of the Multiverse
    Position : None
    Posts : 435
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    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 226,484

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Energy Monarch
    Second Magic: Ark of the Dread Masters
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Vandrad Ragnos 8th April 2020, 6:42 pm

    There’s no fair or unfair in battle.
    ( There is only victory or in your case, defeat. )
    Bonded Alloys RJtajUnz_o

    There was an unbridled rage that seemed to filter into the air from Sabine. It had only been a moment before that she had been expertly, in her opinion, explaining the intricacies of her family’s state within the caste of the Midian nobility. As far as she was concerned, she had answered the question with as much truth as this trollop needed to know. She was feeling quite smug as she came to the end of her admittance but then it had all come crumbling down around her. Mercury hadn’t even waited a solid beat before responding, apologizing for the question and asking if it had been rude. Of course it was, to just ask a royal princess about her family with such blasé regard. She could hardly believe that Themesycia had even allowed it.

    But then the Silver Wolf mage went further, remarking about how Sabine carried herself with such perceived dignity. But apparently if she really were that important, she would have been married long ago to someone else, someone who didn’t hail from a nation that she had openly insulted not even that long ago. The Midian woman’s face was brimming with fury, her skin bleaching a deep red as she glared at the other woman, steam threatening to pop out and billow from her ears. It was quite an amusing sight and Themesycia had to try her hardest to maintain some semblance of poise.

    Sabine kept her line connected between her gaze and Mercury’s, unbending and brimming with an anger most passionate. All manner of insults and words came into her mind as she formulated some kind of comeback for the harlot, wanting to stab at her verbally. But what was she to use? What ammo did she have when she knew next to nothing about her? Maybe she was nothing period; that was something she could use to twist the dagger. Somehow she forced a smile -- a malevolent look that just ebbed with dangerous levels of crazy and crazy levels of danger. “Oh… no need to apologize,” she said slowly and meticulously. “After all… I would never expect a commoner to understand the finer details of a country they know nothing about. Oh… my apologies. I suppose courtesan is a much nicer way to place you, isn’t it?”

    Luckily that was right about when Vandrad managed to pin Bartrand, bringing their match to an end. After a short back and forth, the younger cousin hopped up and asked to fight Mercury. Sabine, of course, thought that he was talking about her, the self important tramp that she was. But Bartrand did not understudy the courtesies and manners that his family practiced, especially in the company that he’d already decided he didn’t like. His comments only served to add fuel to her enraged fire, her teeth grinding behind tight, pursed lips. “Well… I should… get some breakfast,” she managed to get out through her clenched jaw, standing up slowly and starting to move around the pool, though she didn’t go very far without staring at Mercury with a daggered gaze, who had the audacity to snort at his comment in humor.

    The Silver Wolf mage happily agreed to take on the younger cousin, earning her a grin. Vandrad rolled his eyes and walked off the battle stage, even as Simon took a moment to grin up at Mercury and obviously check her out -- again. The Prince stopped long enough to look at Mercury as she came up to him, taking a long drag from her cigarette and grinning with a pride she’d certainly seen him wear once or twice. "It doesn’t seem like you’re wasting anything at the moment,” he replied to her with a smirk, taking the cigarette in hand and plopping it between his lips. He very nearly dropped it as she gave his ass a playful swat, which earned her one of her own from him, completely in the air of wishing her good luck. The loud sound of clinking echoed out over the area as Sabine had dropped a metal scoop into a metal tray, either to get attention or in shock at their physical exchange. Either way, no one looked her way as Vandrad meandered over to sit on the chaise Mercury had just taken up.

    “That girl is going to explode within the next hour,” Themesycia said to him softly, her tone quiet so that Sabine wouldn’t hear her.

    “Hour? Darling, she won’t last the next ten minutes. She’s about to pop like my cherry; early and hard,” Ever retorted with a chuckle.

    “It wasn’t that hard,” the Duchess replied, raising a brow and glancing at her adoptive sister. It seemed they were just discussing the intimate details of Ever’s sex life but for someone like Mercury, she would probably have worked out that, in fact, Ever and Themesycia were also not blood related. And chances were, they’d had fun on their own.

    Vandrad rolled his eyes, used to conversations like this and choosing not to add to or enjoy them. Instead he smoked on the borrowed cigarette, watching as Mercury set herself across from Bartrand in her comfortable, casual stance.

    The younger cousin looked quite ecstatic, bouncing from foot to foot as he faced down with the Silver Wolf mage. As she asked him to go easy on her, obviously teasing him, he chuckled. “Why would I do that? You and I both know you’re gonna spank my ass -- literally, if you’re feeling up to it,” he said, casting her a quick wink. “Best way to get to know someone is through fighting. Or sex. This just seems the most acceptable at the moment, with the present company.”

    “Bart, you can either fight the lady or try to seduce her but the so-called ‘present company’ wants some kind of show,” Simon called out, grinning.

    “I like to think I’m pretty damn good at both, old man,” he tossed back to his uncle. His hair lit up once more, transforming into an open flame. The fire melted down over his shoulders and onto his hands, coating them in the heated element. With yet another wink, he shot himself forward at her, fighting her with all of his strength. He held nothing back, using the best of his practices and training to gauge her strength and speed. And he fully expected her to fight back with all the power she had as well.







    Words: 1107 / 2445 | Tag: @Mercury Arseneault | © marzia at shine & gs.


    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 376
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    Experience : 51,297

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 8th April 2020, 8:21 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    Oh, Sabine was so red in the face with anger. Mercury could barely contain her joy. How the heavens must have aligned to give her a second chance at this pretentious, sorry excuse for a noble. She was about as crimson as her suit, her whole face twitching as she surely was trying to come up with something, anything, to strike back at her with. But Sabine had a whopping plate of nothing on the Silver Wolf mage, and both of them knew it. As such, Mercury waited patiently without backing down from her glare, to see what the other woman would come up with.

    When the princess called her a commoner and a courtesan, Mercury chuckled with genuine mirth. It was more than clear that she wasn’t even a little offended by the implication that she was some kind of royal whore, giggling to herself like Sabine had just used some childish, school ground argument. But once again, Mercury was willing to roll with it. Leaning in closer, she put on her naughtiest smirk and quietly told her, “Oh, honey… you have no idea.” Really Mercury didn’t want to keep bringing this back to Vandrad, but if that’s what the woman wanted to fixate on, well, so be it. She was a master at twisting words to fit her needs, which the prince knew well. Now the princess -- and the rest of the du Wolffs -- were getting a show from it as well.

    As she got up and moved away, claiming it was time for her to eat breakfast, Mercury stopped caring as much about hiding her amusement over the situation. Sabine found a way to move that allowed her to keep staring at the Silver Wolf mage with a near crazed fury, to which Mercury just continued to snort and chuckle, not in the least bit intimidated by the woman. Instead, she took the time to focus on what would hopefully prove to be a better challenge in the form of sparring Vandrad’s younger cousin.

    The prince stopped briefly when she did to accept the cigarette, smirking at her and commenting on how he was fairly certain she hadn’t been wasting anything. Her grin only grew at his words, and then some more when he returned the gesture of slapping her on the ass. There was a sound of obvious commotion as Sabine dropped something in shock at the intimate and public display of seeming affection, if one could actually call it that. Soon Vandrad was down with the rest of the family, having claimed the chaise that Mercury had left vacant, while the mage was faced off against Bartrand, teasing him.

    And continuing with his own trend, he seemed to enjoy it, admitting up front that he knew she was going to spank him. Possibly literally if she wanted. The younger man cast her a wink and said that fighting and fucking were the two best ways to get to know someone. In fact, the only reason he wasn’t offering the latter option was because of “present company”. Mercury grinned. “You do remember that I met you just last night at an actual sex party with your family, right?” she reminded him, pointing out that present company would hardly make much of a difference to anyone here. Well, except maybe Vandrad. And Sabine, but no one cared about her. “But hey, if you’ve been a bad boy, I’m sure I can find a way to accommodate.”

    Simon piped up his good humored complaints that something needed to happen before they all got bored, though clearly he didn’t seem to mind if it would be a spar or a shag. Still, it was enough to usher the start. With one final rebellious quip to his uncle, Bartrand’s body lit itself on fire and he threw himself at her with a grin. Mercury’s bare feet danced easily around the space as she evaded and countered his blows, getting as much a feel for his style as he surely was trying to get of hers. The Silver Wolf mage rarely showcased everything she had, however. She very much liked surprises, and did not think it wise to show off her full skill set in any situation, even in trusted company -- Sabine aside. Hell, even Vandrad hadn’t seen the full extent of her power until a week ago.

    So she played more subtle, not toying with him but definitely holding herself back until she felt she had a good reading of his abilities. Mercury even took quite a number of blows in the interest of knowing how hard he could hit, and using the self sacrifice to throw some punches of her own and see how he handled them. It was a tactic Vandrad was intimately familiar with from the first time they’d truly fought. In fact, just like then, Mercury’s use of her magic wasn’t exactly obvious. The small metal cleats on the bottom of her feet that greatly enhanced her speed would probably go unnoticed by most of those present whose eyes weren’t trained to spot such minute details in the middle of a fight. And perhaps by Ophelia, who clearly had a connection with metal. She also charged her limbs with a bit of electricity, though not so much that the currents would show outside her body for them to see. Rather, with each hit she landed Bartrand might feel like he had received a very heavy shock of static electricity. She’d even made sure to take one or two opportunities to spank him, as requested, with a devious little grin.

    But, she didn’t display her power outright, continuing to keep it close to the chest. As much as a part of her wanted to do him the honor of fighting him all out, that just wasn’t how she played things. Plus, in some kind of weird way of respect, she wasn’t exactly interested in immediately giving up parts of herself that Vandrad had had to work for almost two months to learn. But, Mercury did give Bartrand the respect of fighting him on some kind of even ground to give him the chance to show what he was made of. And as soon as Mercury understood that and was satisfied with her findings, she stopped playing around.

    Waiting for the right moment, she spotted it as Bartrand reached to throw a wild haymaker at her, barely doing anything to cover the intentions of his movements. Waiting only long enough to be sure it wasn’t a feign, Mercury suddenly moved with much more speed than she had before, snatching him by the arm and using his forward momentum to pull him toward her and off his balance. With one hand tightly gripping his wrist and yanking him past her, her other hand rested its palm against his abdomen and easily lifted him up over her shoulder, a display of strength that did not match her petite form -- particularly against a man that was half giant. With a great twist, she threw him down so hard into the metal platform that it gave way and bent beneath his back, leaving a small Bartrand shaped little crater that surely was going to leave him a little dazed.

    It wasn’t enough to seriously hurt the man, of course. He was young and a bit brash, and Mercury was much stronger than he was, but that didn’t mean that Bartrand couldn’t take a beating. In fact, he’d probably be insulted if she insinuated anything along those lines. He didn’t want her to hold back, anyway. While Mercury wasn’t going to make a showcase of her magic, that didn’t mean that she had to reduce her raw strength from the man. Wandering over toward where he was laying, she leaned over his head, blocking the sunlight from his face with her shadow and she smirked down at him. “You good?” she asked him teasingly.

    Presuming he voiced something akin to the lines that he was fine, Mercury would grin. “You’ve got a lot of spunk. I like it.” Bending a bit further down, she planted a kiss on his cheek. “I hope you keep getting stronger. It would be fun to spar you again.” She would offer him a hand up if he wanted it, encouraging him to go sit down for a bit to clear his head.

    Mercury herself, however, did not leave the stage. Instead, her devilish emerald eyes lit on Vandrad with a knowing smirk. Lifting a delicate finger, she beckoned to him. “You owe me,” she informed him teasingly. “I woke up at a cursed early hour for you, and you weren’t even there. I didn’t fly across four countries and crash your engagement party uninvited just to torture you for a single evening. Your punishment is only just beginning. So why don’t you come back up here so I can kick your ass in front of an audience, for once?”

    Oh, how she grinned at him. This was pretty standard talk for the two of them at this point, as Mercury almost always found a way to incorporate flirtatious teasing into their training sessions. And most of the time he reciprocated it, these days. They almost always went back and forth with promises of beating the crap out of each other, though in reality they were pretty evenly matched. Though there had once been a fairly noticeable gap between their strengths, Vandrad had quickly risen to meet the challenge that she posed and now the two of them were so close in ability that it was usually a toss up as to who won during their various bouts of training. It was exciting for both of them, and while Bartrand had been a nice warm up, she was ready for her rain check.

    WORDS: 1663/2753 | @Vandrad Ragnos
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Vandrad Ragnos
    Vandrad Ragnos

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Traveller of the Multiverse
    Position : None
    Posts : 435
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    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Energy Monarch
    Second Magic: Ark of the Dread Masters
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Vandrad Ragnos 8th April 2020, 9:31 pm

    There’s no fair or unfair in battle.
    ( There is only victory or in your case, defeat. )
    Bonded Alloys RJtajUnz_o

    Sabine was more than happy to have Mercury away for the moment -- though she kind of wished the woman had wandered over to the breakfast table with her. All of these knives and forks she could have potentially used… the Midian princess shook the thought away, knowing that that was going too far. She was still royalty and this other woman was a servant at best. Why the du Wolffs had picked a slave with magic over all the other ones that Bellum controlled was beyond her. But it didn’t matter; she was going to win Vandrad’s heart and finally marry. Then she would finally have a husband of strength and worth, enough to destroy their way to the top of the royal line. The very idea soothed her anger, like applying a cold pack to a sunburn. It wasn’t much but it was something to take the edge off.

    Meanwhile, Bartrand was having the time of his life. Though the fight hadn’t started, it was clear that just the prospect of a match was enough to get his blood pumping. He chuckled as she retorted to his comments, reminding him that she had first met him in the middle of an almost literal orgy. A fair point -- but he felt no need to comment on it further. Instead he launched himself at her, fire scaling over his form, as he closed the distance and began to throw every kind of attack at her he could. He fought near like a maniac, his arms and legs swinging in like wild limbs thrown from untrained baboons. He chuckled and laughed as he fought, keeping up his strategy at first as he watched her, analyzed her, studied her every defense and counter.

    Then he changed it up, suddenly gaining some kind of practiced form against the wildness of the prior. Still she kept herself going, fighting him with equal footing without pushing too hard or giving away too much. When hits landed, he was able to tell her durability and when her own strikes reciprocated the impacts, she would feel the toughness and the heat of his magic buffering the damage off his form. But she was utilizing electricity as well and those currents passed through his flames and shocked his body, earning her small grunts and winces as the bolts melded with his veins. Hell, she even managed to get in position to give him two spanks, shooting him a wicked grin that was returned by the younger cousin.

    She wasn’t fighting with her all, that much he knew. While such a thing would usually be slightly insulting, he was more curious than bothered. Perhaps there was a reason she was keeping her magic close to her chest rather than letting it fly. He couldn’t help but wonder how far Vandrad had gotten in cracking through her walls and learning what she could really do. He had to admit -- he was a bit envious. Mercury was an absolute badass; smoking hot, strong as an ox with the charm and wit of one of his own family members tossed in. He wasn’t sure what their relationship was but he was having serious considerations of taking a run at her. She looked closer to his age, after all.

    He’d gotten himself distracted and wound up for a near wild haymaker, his form going more sloppy than poised. As his fist rushed in, she moved with a new enhanced speed, grabbing him by the arm and then hoisting him up and over her head. He let out a yelp of surprise as he was pulled off his feet by this petite, small woman, taken completely off guard by the action. And when he came down, he slammed with such force that the metal plate below their feet was indented, the entire thing bouncing and shaking, water splashing out from the cracks that formed along the side. The younger cousin lay there in a crater of his own body shape, panting and groaning. But as Mercury approached him, a new sound started coming out from his open mouth. Laughter -- honest-to-God amused laughter. As she bent over him and checked how he was, he looked up at her through a single, half-closed eye. “Damn girl, you can lift,” he said between laughs, grinning wide.

    He lay there as she commended him, even bending down to give him a kiss on the cheek. She remarked about wanting to spar him again once he got stronger and his grin got even wider. “I was right, parents. I found the woman I want to marry,” he called out as he reached up, taking her offered hand and pulling himself to his feet.

    “I pity you for the day you say something to make her mad then,” Everance said with a chuckle.

    “Now that was some raw strength!” Dudley bellowed in amusement, chuckling. “Most impressive, Lady Mercury.”

    As Bartrand walked off the stage slowly, falling onto the nearest chaise in a bout of laughter and soreness, it seemed Mercury had no intention of leaving. Emerald eyes turned towards Vandrad, her smirk spreading as she brought a finger up and raised it to summon him to the battle stage. The rest of the family chuckled as they all looked towards the prince, staring back at her as he took a long, finishing drag off the cigarette she had given him. He chuckled as she goaded him, taking playful shots at him as was her usual practice. "I owe you, do I?” he asked, erecting a smirk of his own. "And here I was thinking I’d save you the trouble of being embarrassed as I knocked your ass all over the place. But if you want it that badly…”

    He stood up and flicked the cigarette away. He hadn’t meant to but just as he sent the dying butt away, he flew through the air and landed on top of Sabine’s plate of food, as she had just been returning to sit down next to him. Ashes crumbled all over her pancakes, causing her to stare down in horror that quickly warped to anger. But it went unnoticed by the Prince as he walked up to the stage, slowly walking until he was standing across from her. He kept his gaze locked with hers, his own playful twinkle matching her own as they stood there, waiting for the other to move. The tension in the air was thick and it was obvious that the rest of the family was quite excited to see what was about to happen.

    “I have a better idea,” Themesycia suddenly spoke up, rising up from her seat and dropping the cigarette on the ground. As she stuffed it out with her bare foot, she sauntered over towards the battle stage, her eyes slowly flicking between the couple with a slight smirk upon her lips. “Since this is going to be Mercury’s only full day with us, I suggest we give her a proper du Wolff present. And since Vandrad has already shown that he’s increased his magic power beyond our expectations… it’s safe to say I’m a bit intrigued, if not excited,” she said as she stepped up onto the metal plate. In an instant, the crater that still warped the metal loudly punctured itself outwards, regaining its pure, clean form as the entire stage was set back in its original position. She walked over to Mercury, slowly circling her and running her hand along her shoulders and upper back. “Bartrand spoke true -- the best way to get to know someone is through battle. So how about this for a match; the two of you against me?”

    An excited laugh escaped from every single family member, save for Sabine who stood there dumbly.  “Themmy is feeling good this morning,” Simon remarked to Dudley.

    “It has been far too long!” the brother-in-law replied, giving his chest a single pound with his fist.

    Assuming that Mercury agreed, Themesycia allowed her hand to remain on the Silver Wolf mage’s back until she had walked to the other side, trailing her fingers over her flesh. Once she was there, she would probably notice the excited look in Vandrad’s eye. "Who knew,” he said with a chuckle. "Seems we’re both in for a solid ass kicking. Don’t bother using your magic; she’ll cancel it out. Name of the game is trying to hit her even once.”

    “Are you ready, my dears?” Themesycia said, taking a moment to pull the skirt from her bikini bottom off so that she only had the thong remaining. She lazily stood before them, her arms hanging off her sides as she looked between the two of them.

    Vandrad waited a second longer, only to confirm that Mercury was ready to go. And then he would launch himself forward, crossing the distance in a flash and appearing right before his mother. Assuming that Mercury was there with him, he began his fiery assault.

    And it would indeed be an impressive display of power between the two… but it was all for naught. Themesycia moved with such agility, such grace and such power that it was like she was on an entirely different planet altogether. There were times she seemed to just be standing there, arms loose, as their strikes came in and hit absolutely nothing. But if anyone were to fine tune their gaze hard enough, they would see that her limbs were moving at such a speed that they seemed to disappear. She stayed completely on defense for a good portion of the fight, her gaze steady and her smile broad and proud.

    Then in an instant, she set two punches at both of them, sending them both skidding backwards and off the metal plate. Vandrad stumbled off the edge, managing to just catch himself from falling on his ass as he stepped down onto the cement. Themesycia chuckled as she took a couple of steps forward, bowing to both of them. “Well, you two are remarkably strong. Truthfully, I was forced to use more of my power than I have in an age. Quite the team you two make,” she said, casting a glance to Mercury and shooting her a wink.







    Words: 1757 / 4202 | Tag: @Mercury Arseneault | © marzia at shine & gs.


    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 376
    Cosmic Coins : 0
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    Experience : 51,297

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 8th April 2020, 11:38 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    Bartrand took the loss well, which was no surprise. He’d voiced from the start that he knew he was going to get manhandled, so to speak. He hadn’t actually figured he’d actually get man handled, but by the way he broke into a fit of tired laughter that was more than fine with him. Once more the young man reiterated to his parents that he was pretty solidly set on marrying Mercury, which caused her to grin. Everance commented on how Bartrand would probably regret his choice the day he pissed her off, while Dudley was simply excited over the display of Mercury’s abilities. “Now, now, none of that,” she told the large man with an appreciative smile. “I’m a lot of things, but we all know a lady isn’t one of them. Thank you, though.”

    Vandrad answered her summons with a smirk and sass all his own. According to him, he had been planning on saving her some face by not decimating her in front of his family. “Oooh…” she said as he agreed to give her what she apparently wanted so badly, standing up and flicking the cigarette away to join her. “Vandaddy sure is cocky today. Especially walking into a fight where you know I have the advantage.” A subtle comment that only he would fully understand, now that he actually knew exactly what her magic was. Not only was the platform itself structured out of a material that gave her power, but so too was the constant beating sunlight that was nearing its peak. She wasn’t even a little out of breath from her fight with Bartrand, sweating more from heat exposure than exhaustion.

    Like him, Mercury didn’t realize that his cigarette had inadvertently landed in Sabine’s drink, which was a shame because she would have loved to laugh over it. But truthfully, by that point Mercury had all but forgotten about the other woman’s existence. She was almost too easy to toy with, and had quickly become a bore for the Silver Wolf mage due to the lack of significant wit to banter with. Vandrad wandered up to the stage area, eyes locked on her the entire way until they were squared off with one another. Mercury’s own stance was a little lower than during her fight with Bartrand. The prince already knew a lot of her tricks, and they wouldn’t work against him anymore. She needed to be fully on her guard and prepared for anything.

    There was a brief moment of tension that the two of them quite seemed to be enjoying as they each stood one another down in a game of chicken to see who would make the first move. It was a practice that was fairly routine at this point, and one they both enjoyed. The lead up to their spars was just as much fun as the spars themselves, with both of them going back and forth between being the first to strike and the one to wait. But before anything could get started, Themesycia interrupted with a different suggestion: the two of them fighting her.

    It was a two pronged suggestion. Firstly, she wanted to give Mercury the respect of being given a true ‘du Wolff present’, while the other was out of curiosity to Vandrad’s growth. By the way the rest of the family reacted, Mercury quickly gathered that this was a pretty big deal, her lavender brow raising in interest as she relaxed enough to consider it. She turned to Vandrad as if to silently see what he thought before shrugging with a grin. “I have no qualms with letting your mom pound me a bit.” And from the look of things, Vandrad was very excited by the opportunity. In fact, he looked more excited than she’d seen him in a while, a true testament to how strong the duchess truly was.

    The prince voiced his understanding that both of them were about to get their asses handed to them before warning her that magic would be useless against the infamous Ashen Dread. The woman had the ability to cancel most of it out, it seemed. No, their only goal was to just try to hit her. “That sounds like a fun game,” she said, looking back to the bald woman as she took off the skirting from around her bathing suit. Sharing one last look at Vandrad, the two of them set themselves at the ready.

    Mercury waited for Vandrad’s unspoken signal, knowing that he was more experienced at sparring with his own mother than she was and silently electing to follow his lead. So when the prince launched himself at the woman, Mercury was right there with him, though not up at the front. She utilized every tactic she knew to keep herself at Themesycia’s sides and back, knowing it would be harder for her to defend against a split front. But for all Mercury’s battle prowess, it was nothing in comparison to the duchess. There were a number of times that the Silver Wolf Wizard could have sworn she should have hit the older woman, but her strikes hit nothing but air as Themesycia was there one second and just gone the next. Her sensors in her brain told her that she wasn’t teleporting like Vandrad could. The woman was just moving so quick Mercury couldn’t quite fully keep up with it.

    She saw the punch as it was coming, but there was nothing she could have done to stop it. Her body instinctively swapped into defensive mode, the duchess’ fist seemingly striking a thick plate of metal beneath Mercury’s flesh. Her bare feet slid along the metal far enough that she would have been pushed off of it, had she not tapped in to ability to manipulate the element. Pulling a bit of the stage with her, a lane of metal follow beneath Mercury’s feet until she finally slid to a full stop, the most outward display of her abilities she’d made yet.

    Even as the older woman stepped forward and bowed to them, admitting that despite the seemingly easy victory the two of them had made her work harder than she’d had to in a while, Mercury couldn’t help but eye Themesycia with heightened respect. She was already itching for a rematch, wanting to fetch Mercy and actually draw on her full magic to see if going full steam would make enough of a difference to complete the challenge. Vandrad had said that his mother could cancel spells, but Mercury hadn’t exactly been fully forthcoming with the true nature of her magic, which was really just the manipulation of her body more than anything else. Her magic was really more technological than spell based, and it was sorely tempting to see if that could make a difference in the spar.

    But, it probably wasn’t a good idea. It was already bad enough that she’d let Vandrad in on the truth, or at least a large portion of it. Mercury was treading a dangerous line there. Better not to push it too far. Besides, if it was this rare for Themesycia to join in a spar then the slayer could easily surprise that getting a second one out of her wasn’t going to be easy. So instead, Mercury just grinned at Themesycia’s wink, relaxing enough that she could finally start to catch her breath. “We practice a lot. At awful early morning hours. Because he hates me and likes to watch me suffer. Honestly, all he does is abuse me.”

    Shooting a quick smirk at Vandrad, Mercury stepped down from the platform. “Well, I am sufficiently exhausted, now. I need a drink. And a shower. You two thirsty?” She wandered over to the tables and poured a few glasses of water, keeping one for herself and giving one each to Vandrad and Themesycia should they have expressed an interest in refreshment. Honestly, Mercury wanted nothing more than to have the platform removed so she could soak in the cold water, but her still somewhat recent memories from their trip to Ca-Elum gave her pause. She knew the pool had a shallow end that she could work with, but if anyone decided to get playful and drag her over to the deep end it would be… well, embarrassing to say the least. So she kept the wistful thought to herself.

    Instead, she found an open chaise and flopped into it unceremoniously, sighing with happiness over finally being able to sit. Her limbs felt like jello. Mercury wasn’t privy to what a day in the life of a du Wolff was like, so she was mostly relying on someone else to direct her toward whatever the next plan was. In the meantime, she would simply relax and enjoy the sunshine and cold water.

    WORDS: 1497/4250 | @Vandrad Ragnos
    Serilda Sinclair



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    Vandrad Ragnos
    Vandrad Ragnos

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Traveller of the Multiverse
    Position : None
    Posts : 435
    Guild : Fairy Tail
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 226,484

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Energy Monarch
    Second Magic: Ark of the Dread Masters
    Third Magic:

    Bonded Alloys Empty Re: Bonded Alloys

    Post by Vandrad Ragnos 9th April 2020, 12:14 pm

    There’s no fair or unfair in battle.
    ( There is only victory or in your case, defeat. )
    Bonded Alloys RJtajUnz_o

    It was a true privilege to be able to compete against Themesycia and the murmurs from the rest of the family was enough to tell that. Vandrad himself hadn’t had a ‘spar’ against his mother in at least five years, if one could call it any kind of fight. Flailing uselessly against her impregnable defense could hardly be considered a sound and useful combat strategy but it was the best he -- or many -- could manage against her. Yet unlike Vandrad, Themesycia never bragged or gloated to an obnoxious extent. If anything, she seemed to just truly enjoy testing people’s abilities and seeing where they ranked. She was probably searching for someone who could keep up with her.

    Yet that wasn’t going to be today. Despite their teamwork -- what was impressive, to say the least -- she was still able to outmaneuver them. She played the defender up until she knocked them away, a means of seeing what they could accomplish against her without having to use words. It was also another test of the Duchess’ in terms of how well the couple had come along in their unspoken bond. They knew each other’s patterns well, moving around one another and her flawlessly and without giving away their intent. Her smile remained throughout the fight, an even look of amusement though not condescendingly so. She genuinely was enjoying herself. But eventually she took the initiative to knock them both away, two even punches that carried a bit of her power. Both bodies defended well against it, with Mercury’s hardening to such a state that it was like she had slammed her fist against metal. And the Silver Wolf mage even managed to connect to the stage to help her slide, creating an extension of metal underneath her bare feet.

    She paid her respects to them, admitting that she’d had to dig into more of her power during their match than in several instances before it. The thrill of facing a new opponent in Mercury had sparked excitement in her body, her blood pumping with a bit more strength than before. Truly she wished she could have continued the fight and really given them a chance to let loose. However, there were more pressing matters at the forefront of her mind and now that breakfast was winding down, she felt she needed to move onto her next stage. Themesycia chuckled as Mercury lamented the fact that she had to get up early for Vandrad’s training, accusing him of abusing her. “Really Vandrad, how cruel. Why not let Mercury sleep? Then again, she isn’t lacking in beauty that she needs that much sleep,” the Duchess said, giving the younger woman an impish grin.

    “Ooh! Ooh! I want to fight Vandrad next!” Sabine insisted, leaping out of her chaise to rush towards the platform. She came to a stop next to the Prince, wrapping her arms around him as she giggled. “How about it, Vanny? Want to throw the wifey around a little? I can take a little abuse,” she said, reaching up to tickle under his chin. The look he gave could have curdled dairy.

    As Themesycia nodded to Mercury for water, she stepped off the platform before her son and the Midian woman. “I think… that’s a wonderful idea,” the Duchess said, turning to look at Vandrad in the eyes. “How about you show Princess Sabine a good time sparring and I’ll take Mercury for a stroll through the town? Have a little girl’s talk of our own?”

    "Or…” Vandrad said as Mercury flopped down on a chaise, casting a glance at her and then back at his mother. "I can go with you two. To ensure that nothing… happens.” He made sure to enunciate the last word, his intentions clear and bright for everyone to see. Vandrad was still trying to play guardian against Themesycia’s intentions to sweep Mercury off her feet and have her way with her.

    And that would be a serious concern, if Mercury hadn’t already been shared by his mother and his adoptive uncle the night prior. While Themesycia would be perfectly fine -- and arguably desirous -- of a second round with the Silver Wolf mage, it wasn’t at the top of her list at the moment in time. She smiled evenly at her son, reaching up to stroke his cheek lovingly. “Now, my dear, it wouldn’t be girl talk if a man was nearby to hear, now would it? I doubt you would enjoy hearing about all the things women discuss behind men’s backs.”

    "Mother…” the Prince started.

    Themesycia cut him off, though not sharply. “Vandrad…” she said gently, making sure his full gaze was with hers, holding his attention for a moment. “Trust me.”

    It was rare that his mother ever insisted that he trust her and with such strong, stable conviction. In every instance that she did, it had been made very clear that she had no intention of deceiving him or doing anything he would find upsetting. It wasn’t like he didn’t trust his mother, of course; he just knew that her libido sometimes made her decisions more than her mind did. But the look in her eyes told him how genuine she was in that moment, assuring him that he had nothing to worry about. And as much as he hated the idea of spending any further time with Sabine, he had no reason to disagree when she insisted with such a strong sentiment. He sighed softly but nodded, agreeing.

    She smiled and leaned in to give him a kiss on the cheek. She poured the cool water down her throat in one go, swallowing deeply before she handed him the glass. “Mercury, dear… shall we take a walk?” the Duchess asked, walking over to the chaise and offering her hand. Once the Silver Wolf mage took it, she would wrap her fingers around the other woman’s hand and head towards the forested area to the east of the pool.

    “Wait, should… shouldn’t I be involved in the girl talk? I am the one marrying Vanny, after all,” Sabine said, now unsure of her decision.

    “Of course you are, dear,” Themesycia said, doing her best not to sound sarcastic. “And what better way to get to know your future husband than through a little sparring? This is just a chat between a duchess and ravenous courtesan; after all, this family is all about sharing,” the Duchess explained with a grin, reaching down to properly grope Mercury’s behind as they walked away.

    A chuckle escaped all the members of the family, even as Sabine looked around in confusion. She hadn’t really understood what Themesycia meant… but if it involved Mercury, she doubted it was that important. With a shrug, she leapt up onto the battle stage, insisting that Vandrad follow her. The Prince’s eyes lingered on his mother and Mercury as they departed for a moment longer than it should have before he gave a small shake of his head and stepped up onto the stage.

    As they entered the treeline, Themesycia cast another glance over her shoulder to ensure that they were out of earshot before she turned her gaze to Mercury. “I do apologize for throwing Sabine at you like that. But I figured there was no one more suited to truly drive her away than you,” the Duchess said with a smirk, giving the other woman’s hand a squeeze before releasing it. “I hope you don’t mind but Ever told me that you and Vandrad had a… moment of contention last night, after our little soiree. I just wanted to ensure that everything was fine and that you were feeling okay.”







    Words: 1334 / 5536 | Tag: @Mercury Arseneault | © marzia at shine & gs.


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      Current date/time is 3rd March 2021, 10:37 am