Log:Alderaan: All Can't Be War
The Palace! Specifically one of the grand halls that, like the library, look out over the bay - where the Thranta are in slow flight, dipping to feed on marine life too close to the surface. Droid cameras in the air allowing for massive holoprojections of the creatures to be viewed as they glide or swoop.
The focus of these camera views though is a mated pair soaring in a spiral over the bay, the male carrying the calf on his back while the little one flaps her chubby wings and consumes fish that the mother has brought up and fed directly. All of these images bathed in soft lighting that varies among those colours of the various houses standing Banner to House Cortress, the Royal House.
One full side of the gala chambers dominated by an orchestra, that as the doors open to allow celebrants to enter - begins the night with a composition that Alderaanians would recognize as a dedication to the prior ruler, who had fought so hard for the new beginning that this planet, city, palace and even the majestic beasts viewable without all represent.
At the head of the other side, back to the great windows overlooking the bay? The host of the eve, dressed in Thul colors with a Beldon Masque over his face and besides him in Kuati crimson and Vraktyl masque, the hostess apparent.
A woman of shorter stature in a Vraktyl masque stands next to Bors all stately and dashing and... squidy. Arm hooked with his, she looks over the gathered crowd with a small smile gracing the bottom half of her face. The upper half is absolutely dominated by a Vrakyl beak and feathers. So many feathers.
Blue eyes eventually find their way over towards the large window where she can see the thranta pod in flight over the waters. The music of the orchestra only adding to the majesty. The smile grows more fonder and her arm tightens around Bors' with a gentle pressure.
Wookiees are already majestic creatures of the galaxy. This is why, when the willowy frame of the combat medic is sighted, she wears no easily identified creature as mask. Oh, she is wearing a mask, and the appropriate grandiose accouterments to the evening, just, in her own fashion. A grand headdress tops her stately, blocky head, and feathered epaulets cap wide shoulders. Added to the headdress, she wears a mask of woven vines, that covers just the eyes. The Wookiee makes her way into the hall, warbling softly to herself in wonderment. She takes in the grand scope of things moving slowly. She is careful to keep out of the way of others, not trample anyone as she takes in her surroundings and the grand decor. Wasaka, her small translator droid, as always sits on her belt. even if this one is a bit fancier than her usual.
The last time Yari was here.... Well, we won't go into that. It was almost fourteen months ago, afterall.
Of pure coincidence is the fourteen month old tub'o'lard strapped to his mother's front, not so unlike the ghostly thranta baby swooshing over the heads of assembling guests on his daddy's back. Izek flaps his own chubby wings, just before launching a zooch-berry flavored nipple at the feet of the older woman following in Yari's wake. It's a poor substitute for the real thing, so he's made his displeasure known.
The trio enter only as far as to tuck in alongside the first brazier - as close as heat permits, anyway, and while the older woman (not wearing a mask! Sort of wearing a dress?) eyes everything and everyone with a heavy dose of skepticism, Yari works to extricate her fiery-haired son from her outfit. There's a momentary outburst of protest during the tradeoff and Yari's mask gets knocked askew, but a frozen pat of butter shoved into his grubby hand puts an end to the meltdown before it can properly manifest.
Mother has to work.
Xyomara looks up at the banner, dressed like a Purrgil mask herself. Aristocra's. She is curious what their role might be. Given they deal in animals, perhaps they fill the role of the Inrokini? As her footsteps click-clack on the floor in those heavy boots, the Chiss looks around, eager to take in details for future use, offering neither smile nor frown to anyone, instead just looking around, no particular expression on her face. Unlike the wookie, this Chiss wears a bright white uniform, with golden stitchings and broad, golden epaulettes. And her hat, with the tall feathers, is a thing of beauty, almost elevating her total height to 7 feet... including the hat. And while Chiss might be majestic creatures on their own, she decided to humor her hosts by disguising as a space whale. She may not be born there, but she did spend a considerable amount of her life in space, after all.
Aryn Cortess benefited from the anonymity of the evening thanks to the stipulation that all guests wear masks. Aryn had orchestrated the preparation of an appropriate ensemble that matched her Porg mask. In honor of Porg Elder, the oldest Porg aboard the Falcon, Aryn had fashioned the mask to resemble the departed avian complete with the melancholic eyes and features.
Her gown was tasteful with white, orange, and black that had a cape that resembled the wings of the diminutive creatures. As such, Aryn's arms were bare and naturally pale, with her fingernails painted black like the tips of the Porg wings! The lower portion of her ensemble was the beautiful half of a dancer's tunic pulled tight and cuffed at her calves. Anklets decorated Aryn's small ankles, with a pair of strappy sandals that showed off her toes, whose nails were painted the dark orange the same creature's feet were normally. Her mask hid her blonde hair and face, thankfully, because Aryn would've had scarlet cheeks the entire time wearing this.
Obviously nervous, the small noble fumbles with her hands whilst listening to the orchestra play a song dedicated to her departed mentor and close friend.
It was not easy to safeguard such emotions, especially when it was about the most influential woman in the galaxy.
"..Leia.. how I miss you." Aryn says softly, turning her gaze out the window to the bay, hands still fumbling.
There's an unusually TALL and shaggy guest that arrives. Big as a male Wookiee and as hairy, except that this one has brushed his coat out silkily. While a silver and black bandolier resides over his chest and hip at an angle with a leather satchel attached at the bottom. Not wearing a dress, no.
But what he is wearing over his head is a juvenile katarn skull that has been cleverly hollowed out in the back to fit over the wearer's face and padded. The forward facing eye sockets have been opened up for the wearer to peer out from behind the great predator's lightly bleached and polished bone mask. Speak of 'magnificent creatures', the katarn is revered in Wookiee culture, adults can be large enough for a Wookiee to ride as a war mount, and is associated with the coming of age rites for the males.
The new arrival pauses inside of the entrance long enough to look around, turning the beast's horns slowly this way and that of the katarn skull he wears. Blue eyes study those who are gathered, gaze pausing upon the other Wookiee, then stopping on ... the /porg/ regalia. Oh my!
Maybe because of the music, or maybe because of the homage paid to porg Elder, this Wookiee makes a low wail. Then he's heading for the porg wearer. Watch out, Aryn! Incoming!
"Friends." for all were here now in the palace and could be counted as such, could they not? "Alderaan has seen much that was hoped for her people." Bors's masque continues its slow swirl of dancing colours as he turns to face the assembled as they make their way into the ballroom. Those without a masque provided a simple variation, laces to be tied and something to cover from nose to brow - all with colours akin to Alderaan itself, shifting with the light and intent for elegance despite simplicity.
Bors takes a step forward, drawing Ulani with him to the forefront of the small raised dais where concealed audio-pickups sweep his voice throughout the room. "Most that she who carried us from the ashes never saw. Too busy insuring our future." a sweeping arm motioning to the window where the mated thranta parents swoop lower.
"Found and brought here by our new Princess. A torch passed from one to another. The new era sought after. So today is a celebration of life and peace. Not war. Alderaanians have stood against war since the Katana Fleet was cast to hyperspace. The last of our warships of the old era. The new era has brought division. Houses divided. Wanting to cling to the old ways, and those like Lord Iskender and Her Highness who recognizes we cannot be passive, not any more."
Head turning and another sweep of his arm comes after a rotund figure in red waistcoat, mathing fez and silvery-white tunic and trousers steps up from behind, making Bors's head tilt to listen. "Tonight we have the bridge-gap here, as I had hoped." a pair of spots focusing on one figure who is nigh impossible to miss for the distinctive cinnamon coloured fur and bandolier. Even with the masque of the reptoavian of Kashyyyk.
"Let our first of the scores and waltzes be dedicated to he who carried her, when she was at her most dire need. Welcome, Lord Chewbacca."
And as the song for Leia begins to fade, a sweeping cast of music made to emulate the wind and rain in trees begins to pick up for those out on the dance floors to begin their weaving while others turn to ring the wookiee and give him polite applause.
So enthralled by the thranta as they float in the distance, Ulani has missed several grand entrances. There are so many nearly-familiar faces now. Most of them are covered by masks making her second-guess herself on identifying many of them. There's the two Wookiees: one of whom she's /fairly/ certain she's seen before. Somewhere... And the nervous-looking woman with a regal grace to her. Could that be? The Chiss is hard to miss, but Ulani is certain she doesn't know that woman. She makes a mental note to approach.
It is the cry of a baby that pulls Ulani's attention instinctively. Turning towards it, she spots Yari just as the young fellow redhead loses her mask. The thranta have lost their grip on her and Ulani's eyes sparkle at sight of the babe with his chubby arms waving.
Ah, but it must wait a moment more. Following Bors' lead, Ulani is quiet as he speaks, again looking over the crowd. So moved by his words -- passionate and genuine -- Ulani has to lift up her mask just a little to wipe some tears that are forming at the rim of her eyes with a brush of her fingers.
Oh! That's /the/ Chewbacca! Even Ulani, who had been trapped in a corner of Kuat most of her life, knew of him. Of course, the news she had gotten was in regards to his actions against the First Order and demanding his head on a spike, but that only made seeing him here all the better. She refrains from joining the clutch forming around him and instead turns to her host and companion, a playful grin and an offered hand to dance.
Socializing can come momentarily.
The sound of Chewie's voice was one Aryn could recognize in any room. He had been there to save her life more times than she cared to count. So regarding him during the speech allowed her to watch his approach and hear his heavy steps as he drew near. She joined in with the applause as he was commended for his part in both Princesses stories; the Mighty Chewbacca!
When the clapping began to die down, Aryn closed the distance to hug the massive Wookiee she counted among her closest friends! "Chewie, you look magnificent!" Squeeeeeeeeeze! Aryn had to stand on the tips of her toes to hug him firmly. Upon stepping back, she adjusted her masque, and grinned. "I imagine all sorts of tasty treats at the buffet. Were I a wagering type, I might bet your nose led you here.." Hands on her hips in a joking manner!
"Oy, now y'hush mah little tempest. Yer mum's got fiiiine Republic folk to impress, she does." No small amount of sarcasm there, greasing the tone of the older Kijimi woman as she bundles Izek in close against her with the same swaddling that Yari's stripped off her 'finery'. "Us mountain folk had best get to it, mm? See how many shorebirds we peg /tonight/." A low chuckle that bodes ill for said shorebirds sees the frumpy-frocked lady pushing her way against the grain to escape into open air.
Much to the good fortune of all in attendance, no doubt.
Yari signs a pretty universally rude gesture to her back, fired from the low of her hip, because only an idiot would ever say as much to Odessa Kri's face. It's why she knows her son is in safe, albeit scrappy hands. But enough about cantankerous old Odessa! Yari is on a mission. Hor d'ouevres? Wine? She assumed the invitation to 'take a turn on the floor' meant she'd be hoofing trays of refreshment around but upon finding no such obvious station or sign to summon her thusly, Yari feels a twinge of unease settling into gut that maybe, just maybe, she'd misunderstood the nature of her role. Is this...a /social/ calling? It's with that Olai-in-a-cave-in expression bugged through the eyeholes of her mask that she listens to Lord Thul's announcement, catching and understanding just a fraction of the words amid the rest of the ambient noise, but she follows the direction of other guests' gaze and turns a hesitant 'clap clap clap' of her toward the Wookiee. Wookiee! Wookiees. The larger one with bandolier does not trigger a name in memory, but the fur color of the other yonder IS familiar. No telling if it is who she's keen to suspect, but here's hoping, because as bodies move to entwine and twirl, hers is pushing a pretty desperate gait toward Wrrl.
Xyomara stays silents, hands clasped behind her back, pretending to observe. She heard of Chewbacca, but wasn't aware he was rematched into the Thul family. However, she already got potentially vital information. A new fleet. Is it a family fleet? Information to uncover. Perhaps after everyone got drunk. Now, to turn and.... how did she miss that fur, walking directly into a wookie with a gorgeous headdress? A.... familiar-looking wookie... oh no
Chewie ... er, we mean the guest with the katarn skull mask, is making a bee-line towards Aryn, with no doubt aims to scoop her up into a big hug. Only, then the host is speaking and he slows his step to stop and listen. Followed by his Wookiee eyes getting big with surprise. Caught in the shiplights, so to speak! Chewbacca freezes and then stands there awkwardly until Aryn (porg Elder) hugs him.
It releases the huge Wookiee from his stiffness. Huge furry arms go around the diminutive blonde (even if you can't see her hair) and Chewbacca scoops her up off of her feet for a bone cracking HUG! Maybe partly because of her choice of costume.
Oops, he better put her down without breaking her! Chewie warbles, "rwowoal rwarrl! rwarrl wrall rwowoal." It suddenly dampens his sudden spat of enthusiasm. Then the big lug is looking around at all the others looking at /him/ and Chewie flails his big hairy arms, "grarrrl! wrall!"
Food is always a great distraction!
Wrr listens to the speech given by the host. At it's conclusion she voices her enthusiastic warble at the emotive nature. Who cares if everyone else is golf clapping. She warbles and chrrs her support.
She doesn't circle the other Wookiee as the others do. Instead, she's off to more immediate concerns. Food. She turns and looks for a buffet table, or at least a server with tray of hors d'oeuvres. In so doing though, she spots Yari bearing down on her 'shouting' in her signed fashion of Wrr's name sign.
The shorter of the present Wookiees crosses to Yari, intercepting her, and touching curled fingers to her own face, giving Yari's name sign as greeting. She does some of her own scooping, to carefully hug the redhead. "rwal rwarrl wrall rwowoal grarrrl? woeieowl rwal grarrrl wrall rwal wrall rwowoal rwarrl!" She mirrs and warbles excitedly.
Green eyes scope the rest of those gathered. She Notices the lord and lady hosts's in their grand squid and varactyl masks. Likewise, a blue woman in a tentacled mask.. Tentacles must be in fashion this year. And of course, one can't miss Chewie in his unmistakable Katarn skull. And who is that he's hugging. Her porg mask is just too cute.
As she and Bors dance through the crowd, the pair a periodically stopped by several revellers. Some congratulate Lord Bors of the gala. Some ask of news of Corellia. News of the progress. Most is just idle, polite pratter until the dance continues to the next cluster.
During one of these conversations, a hand is offered to Ulani; the culprit an older man in a Loth cat mask offering a dance. Hesitantly, Ulani agrees and is quick to find herself whisked away; lost in the crowd. It's a small conversation with the unknown man; unheard by those around them but one that has her looking a little apprehensive but trying to be courteous.
Something the man says has Ulani jerking back a little just as Bors reappears from between two furred guests. Together again, the pair is making their way -- a one, two, three waltz gait -- over towards the red head by the food.
"Yari! Wonderful to see you again. How was camping in the mountains?" Ulani tries to place where she's seen the female Wookiee before, but is interruptted when she notices the Chiss again. Ulani leans in to speak quietly into Bors' ear.
Aryn is emancipated from the Mighty Chewbacca's embrace by mercy, and set gently back down on the soles of her sandals, weight transitioning painfully to her ankles, yet showing dexterity enough to step back and recover. "Yes, eat!" Aryn exclaims when Chewie flails his hairy arms at everyone. "Go and find refreshment, Chewie. Maybe after, you may show me a Wookiee dance?"
"If my Lady is not otherwise occupied, perhaps this humble Knight could entertain her with a dance of his own?" Aryn turns to see Ser Lars of House Syrush standing there in elegant garb of black and silver, some sort of avian masque covering half his handsome face. "The honor of a dance with Delaya's First Sword? I am flattered, Ser." Aryn says, shrinking back a bit, bashful.
Lars laughs heartily, "Well you honor me, but there is no reason to be flattered. You have not seen me dance yet." He offers his gloved hand for her to take, smiling charmingly. Timid at first, Aryn accepts, looking back at Chewie and shrugging. /Go! Eat!/ Ayn was being led away to dance!
Lady Kiko Alde stands near one of the grand staircases watching quietly as the chatter and music picked up. She wore a masque, one with big eyes of an Akk Dog!
All these strangers coming up to him. Touching him, saying things to him. It's kind of weird. And tucking flowers into his furry pelt. Han would be smirking SO HARD, Chewbacca can just feel it. Until someone /very/ thoughtfully puts a platter of meat hor'dourves! Now that's more his style! Chewie hoots appreciatively.
A shaggy hand picks up some and ... tries to figure out how to get the skewer to his mouth around the mask he's wearing, while balancing the tray with his other paw. Awkward but he manages it and rumbles happily. The music is nice.
A Wookiee dance? Chewbacca blinks at Aryn through his katarn skull mask. Hmmm, followed by a nod and a rumble, "grarrrl rwarrl rwarrl. woeieowl woeieowl grarrrl wrall rwarrl woeieowl." His gaze goes to seeking where the other Wookiee has gone to in this fancy chamber. Hah! Aryn need not encourage him. Chewbacca is partaking of his offerings of appreciation already! Yum.
Yari shakes her horned head, momentarily engulfed by Wrrlryyhn and Wrrlryyhn's festive attire. "Not me." It's a simple response, but it's a response that came verbally and without her trusty datapad anywhere in sight, let alone her hand. 'Hot cheese' sounds absolutely divine and Wrrl /might/ have a partner in her quest for dairy. But first...
A Varactyl! Yari stares. For at least 23 of her 24 years, Yari spent most of her time watching mouths, watching hands...these often overlooked bits of a person serve as adequate identifiers to her. The fleeting sense of stranger-danger fades and the Kijimi Olai bows her horned brow in confirmation. She'd been camping, yes. It was...camping?
"You see!?!" It's an abrupt 180 from current line of conversation, but Yari demands to know, gesturing from her eyes to the window wall with half-masked glance of amazement back at her fellow Ranger. It's the Thranta. She's seen the Thranta - the flesh and blood kind, not the holographic phantoms gliding through the palacial hall. "Scuse," to the blue-skinned woman in a uniform too crisply white to possible survive an encounter with 'hot cheese'. At least when Yari bumps past people she /tries/ to be polite about it. It's with childlike wonder that she flocks to that window now, hopefully slowing before she runs /through/ it.
A shake of his head to Ula's whispered question once she is back in his arms. Weaving through the crowd, Bors makes note of the horned masked girl, and motions with his head as he leads Ula through the steps of the Alderaanian dance, turning any stumble or misstep into something that seems like it was in place.
A twirl, a drawing away until hands are held before spinning her carefully around him on their path.
The fez wearing valet that had spoken in Bors's ear earlier is at Chewbacca's side, very casually hanging a crimson ribbon hung medal of bright silver with black enameled triple spheres being hung on his bandolier, "In honor of your coming, m'lord. Lady Thul, your hosts' sister, would have you noted for your steadfast service to Her Highness's, Princes Organa's, ideals. We thank you and we mourn with you. Be known you are welcome with your own suite in the Thul Estates, on all of the worlds they have built on." and then Kulai D'Mahn is off and away again, bowing heartily to Aryn as he goes - even if Lars holds her attention.
The live recorded Thranta projections are moved from the walls and are made to swing on air through and above the gala, amidst the firework displays and with projections of clouds that their movements send into wheeling spirals of their wake. Prominent over them all, the calf and its parents.
And then Bors and Ula are before Yari, well behind her at the window. "M'lady! I had promised thee a turn on the dance floor and I would be chastised verbally and most physically by m'lady here if I were forgetting!" Beldon lights shifting in a circular pattern. "Shall we?"
Wrr paused, lifting a shaggy hand to wave and warble a greeting to Bors and Ula as their hosts stopped to greet Yari. Then however, Yari was commanding the Wookiee's attention skyward so she could watch the Thantra in flight. "wrall, rwowoal rwarrl worowl," She started to warble. But this Yari was dashing off. Presumably in the pursuit of hot cheese.
Wrr turned, about to give chase, when she recognized Xyo beneath that tentacled mask. The Chiss was not so safe after all. She scooped the woman up in a brief, more circumspect hug. She was Chiss after all.
Wrr stared after the dancers, her large feet tapping the staid tempo of the stately waltz. Torn between dancing, or food. Food, or dancing. Food won out. Food, THEN dancing. She skirts around Bors and Ulani as Bors tries to honor his promise of a dance to Yari.
Xyomara freezes up. ACK! A shaggy hug! What did she do to earn this? Now she might have fur on her uniform, needing to brush it out... who hugs people? But soon, she is back in her non-fuzzed self, tugging fur of her uniform "A pleasure to meet you to, Wrr."
The fez wearing valet coming up to pin a shiny to his bandolier pauses Chewbacca. The tray of meat skewers is deftly slipped onto the nearest table he's standing close by to so that he may have his hands free of skeweres and trays. The big wookiee eyes the valet, giving the man his full attention, then looking down at the thing that's been pinned to his bandolier. A furry hand tips it up so he may see it.
"woeieowl rwal rwarrl. woeieowl rwarrl rwowoal ror." All these reminders of Leia, of Han, of Porg Elder, of past deeds and adventures, it kind of makes Chewie misty eyed. Good thing he's wearing a katarn skull mask. Maybe nobody will notice. That last several long seconds, barely a glance up when others rush to a window speaking of the thranta.
Then his nose twitches. Is that hot cheese he smells?
But, there are skewers of meat on this tray. Maybe /they/ would like to meet the hot cheese as well! So Chewie scoops up the tray to take it over to make an introduction.
Masquerade! Paper faces on parade! Masquerade!
The crowd is thick and the movement around them is dizzying. A sea of blurred colours. Of dresses, suits, and fine silks. The hum of hundreds of voices talking. Laughter. A gasp of surprise and delight. The ooooohs and aaaaaahs as party-goers look to the projections now dancing on the walls.
Faces! Drink it in, drink it up! Till you've drowned in the light, in the sound...
Ulani follows her partner with a practice grace, but the Alerdannian steps are foreign. Thank the Maker that Bors is there to nearl-lierally carry her through some of the more complicated parts and together they glide and spin; weaving through the crowd as Kulai presents the famous, infamous Chewbacca with honours. One of many, no doubt.
Masquerade! Take your fill; let the spectacle astound you!
At the large window, Ulani chuckles breathlessly, patting Bors' arm before releasing him. "Try not to make her too dizzy, my Lord." Offering a smile to Yari as she sits out the next dance, Ulani glances around to see if she can't find... the child.
Every face a different shade! Masquerade!
There's going to be some fingerprints on this window in need of wiping, tomorrow. Yari's gazing out at the aerial display put on by the flighted beasts much in the same manner she watches the fish outside Bryson's Splash Pub. They are dancers in their own way. But speaking of....what now?
The Olai wheels about in a flutter of brown faux sleeves and stares at the Beldon like he's a...well, a Beldon. Whatever that is. The way her lip screws up and to the side says she has no idea what she is looking at. But moreover..
"A tray?" Yari holds out her hand expectantly in demonstration - a gesture alone that could further complicate her misunderstanding.
"Relax, my Lady..nothing but steps and spins. If we mess up, we will laugh at it together.." Lars says softly, stepping through a dance in time with the music played. He gently led Aryn through a spin, then turned to move along side her, his charming smile never fading.
Aryn took some satisfaction in the Knight's confidence despite his earlier jest about dancing. Initially, she was really nervous and it showed, but then they moved out onto the floor and she felt whisked this way and that. Unable to contain the smile, Aryn laughed. "When you were but a squire, did they teach you of dance, my Lord?"
"They tried, though to be honest, I preferred the swinging of swords. I am sure that comes as no surprise." Lars answers, amused by her laugh.
"I think that is the path of many young men. There is honor still in carrying such a thing at your belt. It, like Alderaan, stands the test of time."
"You speak with the enthusiasm of someone who grew up on tales of swords and Knights." Lars comments, leading Aryn through another spin. "You know the tone well, Ser. My father is the culprit of such things. You would not hear my mother share such things. The word sword might just be synonymous with the worst curse words imaginable."
Lars chuckles, "Our mothers have that in common. She hates the moniker I wear from Delaya."
"What, First Sword?" Aryn asks, looking up to see him nod his head yes. "I wonder why. Nothing but honor is said to come from one who wears it."
"My mother says honor is not found in the weapon; it is in the man." Lars recites. Aryn remarks, "I hear wisdom in that, too. One might argue it takes an honorable man to wield the sword true; but then a wiser person might say it is even more honorable to find reasons to keep it sheathed."
Lars chuckles, finding some humor in how she says it. Aryn asks, "What?"
"Nothing, my Lady."
What merriment there is in the air for creatures that spend their lives there as if weightless. The pod on another looping, widening, spiral from the palace and back up into the sky, riding on thermals. Soaring like great winged clouds themselves. Gulls and cormorants have come seeking scraps, becoming a series of flittering shapes weaving around the behemoths. Packing up little bits of fish or whatever else they can, even landing on some of the thranta to clean their skin of little bugs - feeding themselves.
"Oh, Miss Yari." Bors chuckles. It has begun. How can it be avoided now? He's going to be hit with something. He just knows it.
Red Fez'd Kulai drifts past Aryn and Lars, brows lifting at the knight's particular chuckle, giving him an 'Ehhh? Ehhhhh?' sort of grin before he directs one of the attendants to move near and keep a tray with refreshment on hand for both. The Thul Valet at the top of his game, presently.
Bors though, he stands with one hand folded behind his back and the other extended for Yari, "Come, I shall teach you simple steps. It shall all be well, dear one." How could she resist that bulbous lumpy, colorful, beldon face? That tooth-pingy smile, that manly stubble beard!
A shadow of a Thranta passes over the massive window, uttering a mournful lowing sound and a series of baritone clicks that echo off of the glass.
The Wookiee leaves Yari to her Thrantam gazing. At least this time her nose prints do not join Yari's finger prints. As they often do at a fore mention Splash Pub. Wrr warbles at the Chiss, gesturing towards the buffet tables by way of explanation, invitation, a but of both? The Wookiee charts her course and heads to the queue forming.
Filling her plate with a bit of everything from salted meats, to imported fruits, to yes, hot cheese. In so doing, she bumps into her fellow wookiee, as he intently introduces meet skewers to said cheese. What a fine idea! But first, dancing. Wrr just can't resist music, for long.
Wabling her intent, the younger, smaller, she Wookiee sets down their laden trays and plates, and instead takes the hand of Chewie. So bold! "rwal grarrrl!" She chirrs in a tone that brooks no argument. Leading him out onto the dance floor, she waits a moment to pick up the tempo, before guiding the elder Wookiee into the rather non-Wookiee dance.
Alas, there is no baby to be found. That's fair enough. A baby would find all of this overstimulating. So many faces and costumes. The swell of the music. The dance of the thranta. Oh, dear...
Allowing Bors his dance with Yari -- if he's able to convince the young woman that's what he is, indeed, offering -- Ulani takes a step or two back until she has disappeared into the throng once more. She manages to duck a few offered hands and several, several invites for conversation, Ulani skirts around the edge of the crowd until she finds the open double doors that lead to the balcony outside.
In the fresh air of early dusk, there are a smattering of patrons who had the same idea. Away from the hustle and bustle. Some breathing room. It's immediately helpful. Ulani moves to the side and leans on folded arms upon the wide, smooth stone balustrade. From here, she can look up at the sky and the silhouettes of the thranta pod in the distance against an orange and navy skyline.
Meat skewers and hot cheese, love at first sight. You'd think they were made for ea .. Chewbacca's thoughts are interrupted when the other wookiee at this fancy shindig bumps into him. He turns, his temper such that one never knows if he's going to be a softy and be polite, or rip your arms out.
Oops! There goes his tray! Wait! Then his paw! Wrrlryyhn has him by a hand and Chewie's being led out onto the dance floor. You'd think the elder wookiee didn't remember /how/ to dance - certainly not what Wrr starts doing. Yet Chewie isn't stupid. He bares his fangs in a grin and watches how she's moving. A dancer he may not be, but a mimic perhaps he can chance. He lifts his furry arms and moves his feet, attempting to follow Wrrlryyhn's lead and having no clue what he's doing.
BUT HEY! Who's going to laugh at the wookiees? Maybe Han, if he were here!
Led through another spin, Aryn laughs. Lars chuckles and he brings her close to dance near. "See, naught to worry about, Princess. You dance like someone who has done so her whole life." Lars is careful to spare the small blonde's toes, stepping lightly and often sliding. There are times he catches himself stepping more heavily, allowing the enthusiasm of the music to impassion his steps; each time it prompts the ornate sword at his side to rattle.
"How fare your wounds, Ser. The ones you earned against the Rist?" Perhaps it was a personal question as it seemed to make Lars' smile diminish a bit. "They persist," He admits, "..the poison from their blades is a dark substance. To paralyze a man, and make muscles forget movements they have known their whole life; that is a different sort of evil."
Aryn dips her chin a bit, cheeks a little warmer. "I ..apologize for reminding you of their cuts. I cannot imagine."
"Let us hope you never have to, my Lady. I did my duty, even when service meant death. That is the distinction of First Sword." Lars said, but Aryn shook her head. "No, my Lord, that distinction is you, and you alone. Were I Mother Syrush, I would be proud."
"The only thing my mother was proud of was my smile." Lars said, laughing. "She said, 'now that you can no longer hold a bloody sword, maybe we can work on getting you a wife to hold instead.'"
This surprises a laugh out of Aryn, who laughs out loud, slightly over the music. Lars laughs, too. "My Mother, she is a national treasure." Lars adds, leading Aryn through another spin.
Yari stares with mild, dawning terror at Bors' hand like she's just figured out what it's for. A quick-eyed glance goes to all the dancing pairs gracefully following the tunes, then back to him. To Ulani next, like she might---Ulani is gone.
Yari's lips press into a thin, hard line of resistance, even as her hand trembles ever so nearer to land upon his. She might be somehow coaxed into going with the flow by the lumpy, bladder-headed smile of CHARM, but she doesn't have to like it. She won't! She won't.
Just a couple months ago, music was a foreign concept to Yari. Sound was a myth. Tempo? What's that? Looking very much like a baby tee-muss trying to prance for the first time, she wobbles along by his lead on stiff legs and two left feet.
Wrr mirrs and churrs her enjoyment. The Wookiee obviously enjoys dancing, and just as clearly does know what she's doing. Even if non-Wookiee dances aren't her forte. She resisted the temptation to spin out on the other Wookiee's arm. While it was a rare treat for her to have a dance partner that she didn't fear crushing.. She was still worried of crushing the other dancers as they capered about.
A laugh drew Wrr's attention to one of the other couples dancing nearby. Glancing over, she noted the Porg once more. So cute! Oh, Oh way, it was Dr. Aryn! Wrr gaped a moment, to see the petite blonde so openly enjoy herself. Quickly though she looked away, not wanting to make the situation awkward. As she turned away She spied Bors and Yari, awh, look at Yari dance! Sniff. She warbled loudly and waved over at her friend.
Truly he was never meant to be an A-Wing pilot, then special forces. But Bors -IS- special forces. A special force of ballroom grace! Not even Yari's inability can stop him from making her look good out there. Ulani has stepped away so that she cannot be used an excuse and so Yari will [ansi(#FF00AF,DANCE!)
Like the noble Thranta, partial focus of the night, like the galloping Vummox of Erssi IV near Wild Space! Look how he guides her into a series of slow spins and twirls among the others on the floor. Wending their way to where Lars and Aryn are - somehow getting one of his bulgy lights to wink at the Princess in a show of supreme cheek. SUCH cheek. How could anyone handle such cheek.
Why with grace, for Aryn has it in spades.
But amidst the flowing currents of masqued revelers that weave and laugh among themselves it is a fine moment of peace amidst the war torn galaxy. Something that forces the dreary reality away. The sun is slowly setting and the lights of the palace are engaging - changing the reality of nature's display further as the silvery white bellies of the flying beasts catch and reflect it back.
"Miss Yari, breathe and relax. Thou shan't have to worry." Bors finally adds while he upholds his promise.
Oiy. Dancing is hungry and thirsty work. Kind of like getting caught up in all that wiring when Chewie's working on the Falcon and gets tangled up, tripping and flailing. He warbles something encouraing to Wrrlryyhn, then adds, "rwal rwarrl. worowl rwarrl wrall grarrrl, rwowoal wrall." Then he smacks a hairy hand over his abdomin, "grarrrl grarrrl rwarrl wrall wrall woeieowl, wrall rwowoal rwal wrall rwowoal. rwal, woeieowl rwarrl!" A hoot to laugh, Chewbacca turns to leave the dancing to the younger beings. Grinning behind his katarn skull mask, Chewie goes back to see if his meat skewers and hot cheese are still waiting for his return.
Look! There /are/ pitchers of beer! Who needs a glass?! Have you ever seen a wookiee with a beer froth moustache? You have now!
It's a wonderful night to stare up at the foreign constellations of New Alderaan as they come out; beckoned by the encroachment of night. The light breeze. The faint sounds of water in the distance. The mournful cries of thranta as they get further and further away.
And behind her the sounds of the masquerade as it carries on. Ulani looks over her shoulder in contemplation. She really should get back to it. One more glance out at the expanse of New Alderaan then the young woman in the varactyl mask reenters the palace. The wall of sound hits once more and she almost turns to go again. Almost.
Instead, she returns to the window where she had left Yari and Bors and grins to find neither are there. This is the perch she chooses from which she will gaze upon the gathered nobility and others and Wooks with a curious eye and a bit of wonder. So many people. So many languages and colours. Such magnificent creatures on display both in projection and in costume.
What a strange many worlds this galaxy has.
/Such/ cheek. Aryn winks back at the host before being led into another spin and brought to a graceful halt. The music was concluding, at least for this song, and Aryn found herself slightly winded. Dancing and conversation was tough! Lars held her hand, guiding her safely to the side before graciously bowing. "It was a pleasure to have this dance, your Highness."
"The pleasure was mine, Ser, truly. I wish good fortune in your quest to please your mother. Though, judging from the presence of your sword there, I daresay your hand has not forgotten to use it." Aryn says, intending it as a compliment. Lars laughs. "As you say, my Lady."
Aryn is left to enjoy refreshments from the fez wearing staff member employed by Lord Bors. "Thank you," She says, after claiming a bit of wine.
Ser Lars walks along the crowd confidently, adjusting his half cape to hang behind the glittering silver pommel of his sword. When he arrived at Ulani, he paused and held out a fancy gloved hand. "Miss? I see you absent a partner to dance? Would you care to? My name is Lars. Lars Syrush." He dipped his head respectfully, prompting the dark brown curl of his hair to hang over his pale brow, accentuating a scar along his jaw and cheek. He had a charming smile that didn't seem to falter.
Wrr continues to spin the floor with Chewie until his stomach wins out. Well. Wookiee. That pitcher of beer was tempting. But not quite time to return to snacks. Instead she finds herself back at the observation window. Unable to resist any longer, though she does cast her gaze from furtively from side to side the Wookiee presses face to glass. She stares up wistfully at the night sky.
Heaving a content sigh, the Wookiee pulls back, undoubtedly leaving a nose print behind . She turns, spying the Varactyl wearing masked woman nearby. Before she can intercede however, one of the nobles is asking her for a dance. Better he, than Wrr, truth be told. Time for refreshments then!
The Wookiee steps away, looking for one of the Fez wearers that might have a suitable drink for herself. Instead, she spies Aryn. Carefully navigating the smaller beings, Wrr moves to intercept the much smaller blonde. "rwowoal!" She warbles cheerfully, and moves in for that traditional Wookiee greeting. A hug. She gives Aryn plenty of time to reject however just in case she's met her Wookiee hug quota for the evening.
"Easy to say," Yari retorts, which might be the longest sentence she's spoken all day. She bumbles along, paying too little attention to the music to connect those dots and find the rhythm on her own, much less coordinate what her ears hear to what her feet do. Or don't do, in this case. She is a woman born and raised in a tavern, sandwiched between equally shoddy buildings in the frigid streets of Kijimi City. Sturdy stock. Her hands can pound even the toughest dough into submission. Pluck the most feathered of fowls. Scrub dishes in scalding water. Her feet can pound pavement from home to market minutes before closing and still manage to pickup last-minute items for the evening rush. She is sturdy stock.
She is not graceful stock. Ever more is this on display whilst Bors upholds his promise...
So the eve goes. Laughter, music, the song of the Thranta, the roll of laughter than becomes as infectious as anything one could imagine. The wine flows as the dancers - even when some stumble and recover themselves in the throng of movement careening around the room. As lights dim and sun begins to wane outside the holo-projections begin trailing vaporous ribbons that provide illuminations in silvers, greens, bright blues and deep crimson to cast a multitude of shades and hues upon the gala.
Crystals hung just so catch light and send splashes of sparkling light over all, like a sea of stars existing around and among the party goers. A rainstorm without wetness, snowfall without cold, bright motes of colour when the holo-ribbons pass through. Majestic, magical, can one truly find the words to match with the displays being provided by little more than simple technology mixed with high?
The orchestra plays on, tired players being replaced with fresh so that those who had been longest may find food and drink of their own. Even the so-called 'servants' at the gala trade off position as things wear on. Equal among the nobility.
"Perhaps, Lady Yari - but all the same." Bors takes every awkward stumble and uses it, even when it causes him a miss-step, to present her motions as intentional and matching with his own.
It's a story that happens all through the night. Those who've schooled in such, those ignorant of the moves. One carrying the other for the sake of enjoyment.
And meanwhile the Thranta bank off, headed for their night roosts; perhap to result in more new calves in the waiting days.