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Ronan Ulfricson

"If you think anyone is sane you just don't know enough about them."

0 · 1,022 views · located in Tiberia

a character in “Of Glory”, as played by Scarlet Loup

Description

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“If you think anyone is sane you just don't know enough about them.”




The Basics




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|| Full Name ||
Ronan Bjorn Ulfricson

|| Nicknames ||
Ronan's name comes with few nicknames, but he remembers being affectionately called "Cub" by his mother in reference to the nickname his father earned in war.

|| Gender ||
Male

|| Age ||
Twenty-three

|| Rank/Title ||
Prince of Ostwall and Heir to the Throne

|| Sexual Orientation ||
Heterosexual

|| Kingdom/Alliance ||
Ostwall / Himself




What's on the Outside




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|| Hair Color ||
It is quite obvious that Ronan's black locks did not come from his brown-haired father. Instead, they bear striking resemblance to his mother's.

|| Eye Color ||
Like his father, Ronan has eyes that are a light jade in color.

|| Height ||
Six feet, two inches

|| Weight ||
Two hundred pounds

||Tattoos ||
Wanting to look like a true warrior, Ronan bears a tribal design on his left bicep.

|| Scars ||
Like Ulfric, Ronan has a variety of scars on his arms and legs. These wounds, however, all come from tournaments rather than battles. He would like to pretend, of course, that they are from a noble war, but he has never even seen a battle.

|| Description ||
Ronan is what Ulfric once was: a bear of a man. Ronan stands over his father at six feet, two inches, and he weighs about two hundred pounds due to his muscle. Therefore, he is obviously a very well-built man. He bears a strong jaw, and his cheeks appear almost sculpted. Very few wrinkles appear on Ronan's countenance, but he does show crow's feet and laugh lines when he smiles. Ronan often grows his facial hair out into a light goatee, and he lets his hair grow in thick curls just on his head. Occasionally, he will grow it out until it can just barely be pulled into a small pony tail of sorts. Unlike his father, he dresses in more-ornate doublets with a thinner coat or cloak on top.




What's on the Inside




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Personality:
{Unpredictable, Charming, Hot-Headed, Obsessive}
On the outside, Ronan appears quite perfect. He's quite intelligent and charming. In public situations, he often speaks eloquently and with deep thought to back up his ideas. In tournaments, he is ruthless and extremely skilled. However, there have always been whispers circulating about the palace concerning his true colors. Around Genevieve, he is a true gentleman. Those who have known Ronan since his childhood remember his temper and his impulsiveness. When alone, he tends to grow childish and hot-headed. In fact, no one truly understands the calming affect the Queen has on her step-son.

His behavior is, in one word, unpredictable. In just a few seconds, he can go from jovial to enraged. Ronan lacks a filter in these outbursts, but his status as Ostwall's only prince tends to give him the ability to get away with just about everything. He is obsessive to the point where he becomes overly protective of anything from a sword to a horse to a human being. If things do not follow the plan he has created in his mind, he quickly angers and often shouts and curses. He lacks the ability to carefully think his actions through, but he certainly isn't a stupid man. In fact, he is quite capable of deep thought to a certain degree. Ronan often finds it difficult to think of the long-term effects of his actions.

Still, he manages to play the role of caring brother to both of his sisters, and he conceals his true self around Genevieve. The extent to which he is capable of dragging out this illusion is unknown to anyone -- including himself.

|| Hobbies ||
  • Sparring
  • Horse Racing
  • Hawking
|| Habits ||
  • Furrows his brow when he is thinking deeply
  • Grows angry/listless when proven wrong
|| Oddities ||
  • The technology of the time (or the lack thereof) prevents Ronan from truly being diagnosed. He is obsessive and noticeable delusional, and he goes back and forth between manic and depressive states like a person with bipolar disorder might.
  • He is not an alcoholic, but when presented with it in a festive scenario, he tends to drink past his limit.
Likes/Loves:
  • Genevieve
  • His sisters
  • Control
  • Festivities
  • Sports
Dislikes/Hates:
  • His father
  • Losing
  • Sweltering Heat
  • Being Still
  • Being Lectured




What's Done Is Done




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Biography
|| Place Of Origin ||
Ostwall

|| History ||
Ronan's birth came in the midst of political turmoil. Freya's stress during her pregnancy, perhaps, can attest to his later behavioral problems. Still, he had a very normal childhood. His earliest memories do not stretch back to a time before life in Ostwall's Palace. Vividly, he can recall a time when he would totter about in the gardens with his mother nearby and perhaps Celia in her arms. Never did he want for something besides, perhaps, a father. For the first few years of his life, he would see very little of his father. Still, his mother played both roles very well. Unlike his father, he managed to achieve a very formal education under the most educated men of the nation and alongside his sister.

As a young boy, he grew temperamental especially when he did not get his way. Perhaps the first instance of this was when he insisted upon being allowed to follow the soldiers and his father to war at the age of nine. His mother, of course, said no. For the next week, he refused to leave his room unless someone physically carried him from it. Between tantrums, he was a very spirited young man, and he quickly found a love for sports and hunting. Through his teenage years, it was quite common to find him out on a day-long hunt with other boys of the court.

During these teenage years, he also began to question his love for Ulfric. There was a time before then that he had wanted nothing more than to be his father. Like most boys, he believed his father was a hero. Resentment toward the man, however, began to build within him. This resentment, however, was simply a result of being unable to prove himself to his father and therefore evoke his love. In the midst of his struggle to stand out, Freya died. Ronan, along with his sisters and father, were distraught, of course. She was the rock that had held them together. The remaining family members only grew more distant. It did not help, of course, that Ulfric married just about a year after Freya's death.

Ronan imagined he would hate her with every bit of his soul. He didn't. In fact, he was absolutely smitten with her. He found himself trailing after her, tending to her, and eventually subtly flirting with her. She was, in turn, affectionate. Finally, one day, he could not hold his obsession back any longer, and he confessed his love for her. His father, too ignorant for his own good, did not realize what was going on. Their affair grew more and more heated until they finally consummated it. Around this point in time, he finally decided on how he would prove himself to Ulfric. In the end, he twisted this idea until he decided that the only way he would be able to achieve this would be by doing what his father had done: rising up and stealing the throne. One, of course, does not simply take the throne from a king. Ronan knew he would need to wait and bide his time. Until the time comes, Ronan merely waits for the chance to strike when The Bear least expects it.

|| Happiest Memory ||
Falling in love with Genevieve, or winning in his first tournament

|| Saddest Memory ||
The death of his mother




Face Claim:Henry Cavill

So begins...

Ronan Ulfricson's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir
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He couldn't tell if he liked these events or not. The last time Ronan had attended, he had been a lad of thirteen. He recalled very little from the event except for the single hunt he had been allowed on by his father. Freya hadn't wanted it, had pleaded Ulfric not to let the boy attend, but Ulfric had insisted, pointed out that another boy just a year older than he would ride with them. Ronan supposed that was one of the few good memories he had managed to forge with his father.

Now, he was twenty-three, and he knew that whatever his father had tried to forge in that brief father-son encounter had been superficial. Likely, Ulfric had only taken Ronan because he pitied the young prince. Ronan huffed in annoyance and tightened his fingers around the stem of the goblet in his hand. No, that was certainly it. Pity.

Well, he didn't want it or need it. In fact, perhaps he would have pitied Ulfric, but he didn't. Even as he watched Genevieve from across the ballroom, he felt no regret, no sense of wrongdoing. It was simply what his father deserved. He certainly didn't deserve her.

Ronan brushed a hand against his mask for a moment, ensuring it was in place before he started to walk towards Genevieve. He came just steps away from her, was about to invite her to dance, when his father stepped in, effectively cutting him off from his love.




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He too had watched Genevieve, but not out of spite for another person or even out of love. Ulfric noticed the way she moved, the grace with which she conducted herself as she moved in and out of the nobles, exchanging greetings with whomever she passed. It was a bitter reminder of Freya, and he grimaced to himself behind his mask. He wasn't sure he could call what he felt "love", but it was a strong emotion. An affection, if anything. His new wife was a gem in a wasteland like Ostwall. Sometimes he regretted taking her as his, but she had fit in well afterwards, he reassured himself.

Couples whirled around him to the beat of the music, and he seemed to slowly come to his senses, blinking a few times as he looked about. He could see a few others who had stopped moving and taken to the wall like he had, but he knew he was out of place. He'd been out of place each time he attended one of these events. And he thoughts were brought back to Genevieve, to how effortlessly she managed to make herself relevant. Perhaps he ought to approach her. It was the kind thing to do.

The last time he had attended, Freya had been with him, and the two danced the night away. He had never been a lithe man, was never made to waltz, but he had embarrassed himself just to hear the way she laughed gleefully each time he nearly crushed her toe or caught on her dress. He hoped he could find that with Genevieve. And so he approached the young woman, clearing his throat now with a soft cough.

"Would you...care to dance?" he inquired, hesitating for a few heartbeats before extending his hand, oblivious to Ronan who clenched his fists behind the older man, boring holes into Ulfric's head with just his gaze.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir
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#, as written by Inuiri
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To an outsider Genevieve’s motions probably looked beautiful, watching her flit about speaking to everyone she could with a smile on her face, grey eyes lighting up under her mask with every person she spoke to.
Truly, she was horrified. She wanted nothing more than to run and hide in her lover’s arms and weep. With every step she glanced over her shoulder in terror, trying to keep a look out for the man who had ruined her life.
Her Father.
This was Seabal, no ball of her own, Genevieve couldn’t control the people invited the way she could in Ostwall. So from the moment she arrived and spotted him she had frantically separated from her husband in a desperate attempt to not be spotted by her abuser. A tiny bit of her hoped the mask would be enough to hide her, but her golden brown locks stood out, especially with their length.Image
In her terrified, hypersensitive state, her heart leapt out of her chest when she heard footsteps approaching. She flinched and turned, spotting Ronan and almost bawling with relief at the sight of him only for… Him to step in. She schooled the pitiful look on her face as she gazed up at Ulfric, close to shaking at how close he was to her. He was easy to pick out. Ostwall looked so different than everywhere else, her family stuck out like sore thumbs among the other royalty.
Still, Genevieve managed a smile for the man she didn’t love. “I..” She stammered pitifully at the offer. This certainly threw her entire night off it’s track. Ulfric wanting to dance had never been part of her itinerary, but neither had her father’s appearance… Still, she wasn’t going to be rude to him. He had never been rude to her. “Yes. That sounds lovely.” Genevieve told him gently, taking his hand and squeezing it lightly, despite her heart still feeling like it would explode out of terror.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lucas Brigham Character Portrait: Loria Estermont Character Portrait: Juliana Auclair Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Cedany Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Capheus Auclair Character Portrait: Asten Swann
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Image Lucas entered the ballroom with his fiancè beside him. Ris looked absolutely stunning tonight in her blue dress and her glittering mask. They had been together more while traveling here than they had probably their entire lives and he was beginning to notice things he hadn't before. Like how beautiful her smile was, how kindhearted she was, and how much she liked to poke fun at people. As a child, he found her annoying, but now... It was endearing.

“I’ll be right back, ”, she said and disappeared into the crowd. "As you wish!" He called after her, though whether or not she heard him he would never know. Lucas found himself wanting to stick to her side for the night, but knew it was better to move around and socialize. Besides, there was one person he really wanted to see. Even if she didn't want to see him. His blue eyes gazed about the room searching for her, his sister, Juliana. He noticed her husband by the windows talking to her lady in waiting which he found odd, but thought little of it otherwise and continued in his search.

And then he saw her. She was standing with others off to one side, laughing and socializing. He suddenly found himself feeling nervous. As a child she paid him no mind, but now, would she also dismiss him? They needed to talk. He needed to understand why she left. Why she abandoned him. It was a stupid worry, he was a man now after all, but he had always adored his sister and looked up to her. He could never understand why she hated him so. And he knew she did. He could see it in her eyes every time he attempted to show her any kind of brotherly love. He bit his lip, a habit since he was a child, and then walked towards his sister.

A servant entered his path and offered a goblet of wine. He took it and thanked the servant, though it was frowned upon to give them such attention. It was their job. They didn't need gratitude, but it was just who he was. His father long gave up that teaching to him. At the thought of his father, his scar throbbed, but he ignored it and focused on the task at hand. Confronting his sister. He took a long swig of wine and took a deep breath.

"Your Majesty," He said with a bow. "My compliments on the beauty of your new home. I dare say it's more spectacular than home." He set the, now empty, goblet of wine on a nearby table and offered her his hand. He wasn't entirely sure that she recognized him now, especially with his mask. "My dear, Juliana, would you do me the honor of having this dance with me?" With his eyes, he pleaded with her. Please dear sister they begged, I must speak to you.






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Image Cedany had been wandering the ground of the castle for the bast twenty minutes. Her green and black gown that matched the green of her mask helped her blend into the night. She was making her way past the stables when she heard voices. Two men laughing and talking to one another in such delight that she found herself curious and decided to hide and listen in.

She peaked out and nearly gasped at the sight of Lord Auclair, the king's brother, and the stable boy in entirely intimate conversation. At first, he thought how rich this information could make her. Then she decided against it. While being homosexual was frowned upon widely in their time, Cedany didn't really mind it. She was unsure herself whom she would give her heart to. She found girls beautiful and boys handsome, but neither tickled her nethers.. so to speak. At least, not yet. She decided that she wouldn't mentioned what she saw to a single person beyond the two subjects themselves. If only to give them someone to talk to. While they were technically the enemy, this gathering is meant to be one of peace and peace she would offer. Maybe, or maybe she'd just keep it to herself.

She smiled and backed away from where she had been hiding. She decided to take a different path to the ballroom and allow them some time alone.

Once she arrived at the party and was announced to the room, she went looking for her favorite person. Her older brother, Ronan. She had thought about sharing what she had seen, but decided against it. Just because he had a forbidden love didn't mean he needed to know about the love of others. She had arrived just in time to see her father whisk away her brother's love leaving him angry and alone. She frowned, her heart aching for her brother. She watched Genevieve and her father dance a moment before she ran towards her brother.

"Ronan!" She squealed, throwing her arms around his neck. "Isn't this place grand?" She pulled him closer and whispered into his ear so only he could hear her words. "I'm sorry your heart aches brother. If there anything I can do to make your dreams come true, you only have to say so." She pulled back and smiled at him. A finger to her lips. She winked at him and said, "I'm capable of more than you think, and I hear more than you know."

With that, she disappeared into the crowd in search of some sweet treats and maybe someone to dance with. Unfortunately, there weren't many boys her age. Or girls. The only person closest in age to her was the princess of the kingdom, Giselle, and she was much younger. Ah well she thought. I'll just dance with myself then. No whirlwind romances for this princess.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Cedany Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Adelaide Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Theran Ulfricson
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It pained him to watch his father whisk Genevieve off, stealing her from right under his nose. He wasn’t new to this experience, though. It seemed as though every time he had her, every time he was close enough to touch her, hold her, his father came in and took her. It infuriated him, but it wasn’t as if he could do something about it in public. So he ground his teeth and clenched his fists, watching helplessly as his love was whisked away.

Ronan had little time to wallow in his self-pity, for Cedany ran at him then and clung to his neck, dragging him down to her level just a bit before he stood up again and held her in his arms, up off of the ground.

"Indeed it is, Sprout," he agreed, whirling her about once before placing her on the floor. She whispered to him just before they parted, however, and he froze for a moment in panic. "I..." He started to speak, but he cut himself off as his sister dashed off. "Cedany!"

He hurried after his sister now, attempting to follow her. He was a large man, though, and darting through crowds had never really been Ronan’s strong suit. When he finally managed to bob and weave enough to end up by Cedany, however, he found her turned to face Aren.

”Cedany, how -” But now she raced off towards Adelaide and pulled both of his siblings out on to the floor after her. ”Shit.” He followed her out again, attempting to slide between dancing couples until he quite nearly tripped on to his siblings.

”Any room left in this dance circle?” he asked, attempting to cover up his true motive for following his sister. He knew she knew more than anyone else in the palace, but he had thought his relationship with Genevieve was a secret, damn it. If she knew, then who else did?

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir
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#, as written by Inuiri
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Genevieve followed along with ease, clearly the more skilled dancer; she moved like it was second nature to her, as easy as walking. His expression made her uneasy, leaving her with no option but to duck her head down to avoid his frown. She hadn’t been too obvious about Ronan had she? If she had… She was already frightened enough, Ulfric’s scrutiny only making her panic more and stumble, apologizing the same moment as him and giggling nervously. “It’s alright.” She assured him, managing to keep the shakiness from her voice.
She did her best to get them back on beat with the others, but her own anxiety didn’t do much to help, and she feared taking control too much wouldn’t end well. It was impossible to look away from Ronan as he hung around his siblings, heart aching as Genevieve looked away all too quickly, keeping her eyes down until Ulfric spoke again, making her visibly tense.
What was she to say? The man who sold me off to you is here didn’t sound very ladylike, or decent at all for that matter. She wanted Ronan. She wanted to be away from this hell and safe with her beloved. Yet another thing she couldn't tell her husband. "It's nothing." She finally lied after a few moments of uncomfortable silence. "It's just been quite a while since the last time I was at a party. I'm nervous is all." Was that convincing enough? She was hardly sure, with her mind racing a mile a minute she could barely even keep track of what color she was wearing. It seemed like the safest bet. If she told him the truth he might go over to him and try to thank him, keeping her at his side like some trophy. The thought alone made her force down tears.
When the song changed and Cedany and her siblings rushed out, her heart flooded with relief, forcing her expression to stay at a rather neutral smile. She waited for Ulfric to release her, so she could wait at the sidelines again and oh so conveniently her Ronan would come over and offer to dance with her. She could tell Ulfric she wasn't feeling well - not even a lie, truly she felt sick being in such close proximity with her fath - and Ronan, being the wonderful doting son he was, would offer to take her off somewhere less crowded and she could stay there with him for the remainder of the night. But he didn't release her, simply shifting to change tempo for the next song, and she felt like she could hear her heart shattering. But she was a good girl, so despite how she was dying within, she kept up a smile as they danced.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Cedany Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Adelaide Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Theran Ulfricson
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A low rumbling left Theran’s throat as he tried to hold back his laughter at his sister. The girl was far from a lady and to hear her call herself that was the best thing he’d heard all night. Leave it to the young girl to make the evening a more enjoyable one.

“You know well enough –” he had made it only partway into his thoughts when he was cut off by Cedany wanting to dance. And why wouldn’t she? It wasn’t hard to imagine she was living everything up before they made the trek back to Ostwall.

Just as he started to round to her side of the table, Ced was already running off. With a roll of his eyes, he followed after her to see Adelaide. Well at least she wasn’t running off to strangers, a small comfort to be sure. It almost seemed like Addy was on her way over to where they were anyway. Was she under the same mind frame that Cedany wasn’t to be trusted too much by herself? If so it was comical.

Theran started after his sister to join both of them as their younger sister pulled into onto the dance floor. Yep, he definitely didn’t want to be out there where other people could see his follies, but for his family he was willing to do anything. He glanced up at Addy with a shrug of his shoulder and a smile on his face. There was nothing they could really do except go along with it or make the poor girl upset.

Jerked out of his thoughts, Aren helped to steady his older brother so that the large brut of a man didn’t take the rest of them down with him. It seemed the older male wasn’t as graceful on the dance floor as he was on the battlefield. He’d grown up thinking that fighters made the best lovers. Maybe it was the other way around.

“Careful. Don’t need to crush the ladies here, brother. They might never forgive you.” His voice was light saying he was only picking even though getting on Cedany’s bad side could mean a great many surprises one didn’t want.


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Best part about Cedany’s erratic behavior was that for once she didn’t have to go after her sister. Annie was coming straight for her bringing Theran in tow. She laughed. He was nearly being drug against his will onto the dance floor. Leave it to their sister to make a fool of the whole family. Well no – their father did the most of that when it came to social graces. She was fine with it too since it gave her an ample excuse not to be a perfect lady especially since she wished she was as free as Ced was to do as she wished.

Adelaide caught her baby sister into an equally tight embrace and spun her around as well as she could, setting her down back beside of Aren who had finally caught up with the speedy teen. She nodded her head politely to him because a huge grin spread across her face.

“I see Annie here decided to involve all of us in her antics this time.”

Her brother grinned back at her seconds before he caught Ronan from making them all pancakes onto the ballroom floor and really making them a grand spectacle for all the other nobles of the two other kingdoms.

“Oh come on, Aren, we both know that all of us can make fools of ourselves without our heir here doing it for us. Please join us. I believe Annie would just love it.”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lucas Brigham Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Eleora de Croismare Character Portrait: Cedany Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Cyprian Auclair Character Portrait: Adelaide Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Theran Ulfricson
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Image Lucas smiled at his brother-in-law, completely oblivious to the closeness of the man and his sister's lady in waiting. He took his brother's hand and gripped it firmly as he shook. He clenched his jaw a bit at the mention of his father, but it was not easily seen. "Good Evening to you, brother," He greeted. "I have, in fact, talked with Juliana already and I am quite pleased with the outcome. We have poor communication skills, I'm afraid, but it seems we were able to patch things up."

He turned back towards where he had left his sister for a quick glance, but the crowd was blocking his view so he turned back. "As for what your help, I have a proposition for you." His eyes darted to Elora and back. "Privately if you would not mind." He smiled at the young woman beside the man and bowed respectfully to her. She was not a noblewoman, but if his mother had taught him anything it's that women should always be treated with respect. "I shall return him to you shortly."

He looked back to his brother gestured to the room he and his sister and recently vacated. "Shall we?"

He barely waited a moment before he began to walk towards the room. Once inside he shut the door behind them and spoke with authority he saved for addressing the kingdom and the court. "I recently had an idea that I feel would benefit both of our kingdoms. I have run it by my sister, but she has requested I speak with you on the matter. My request is this: An alliance between our kingdoms. We've seen so much war I feel it is time for some peace. What do you think, dear brother-in-law?"






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ImageCed laughed at the love and affection that her family gave in return for hers. Aren and Addie were both laughing at their antics. She was quite pleased with herself for so quickly and easily bringing her family closer together in a time of obvious separation. Because of the masks.

They danced together happily and was soon joined by Ronan. He stumbled into their little group like an elephant drunk on champagne. Cedany laughed, the sound of their voices filled the air and warmed her heart. She smiled innocently at her eldest brother and batted her eyelashes. She knew his real reason for joining them probably had to do with the proverbial bomb she had just dropped on her brother, but he needn't worry. She would tell no one. This was information she planned on taking to her grave. She held tight to her siblings' hands and yelled, "Now Ronan, dear brother, are you sure you can keep up? We all know you have two left feet!" She was obviously joking, but what else were siblings for than making jokes about one another's skills?

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Cedany Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Adelaide Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Theran Ulfricson
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Ronan let out a burst of laughter as Aren seized him, ensuring he wouldn’t trample their sisters. There was only a few inches and about twenty pounds of difference between the brothers, but Ronan had never been as quick in a physical sense as any of his siblings. He could dance better than his father if he set himself to it, but he hadn’t seen a need to learn dance until Genevieve joined them. And now he regretted not knowing how t, for dancing was the only real way they could communicate honestly in public.

His education had never required a knowledge of dance, however. Ostwall had always been backwards in relation to the other two nations, and while it had certainly grown more unified under Ulfric, there was no avoiding the looming knowledge that even the royals were nothing more than titled peasants.

He gripped Aren’s upper arms in his hands and kept the two of them steadied now that he found his footing. Ronan let out a softer laugh now as he smiled down at his brother, hands still gripping his shoulders as the younger man spoke.

”Why, you!” he exclaimed, unable to fight the grin that tugged the corners of his mouth. He reached up with his left hand and mock-slapped Aren, more or less resting his hand against his younger brother’s cheek before letting his hand fall. ”I’ll teach you to speak to your elder like that.” He pushed off of Aren now, certainly keeping in mind his strength, but likely still a bit unintentionally forceful.

Ronan might have sparred with his brother then and there if they had been home, but at a gathering such as this, he wouldn’t dream of it. Their father did enough embarrassing them here.

He turned to the girls now and smiled back at Adelaide. Ronan opened his mouth to speak, but Cedany spoke up first. He looked towards her, watching as she gazed up at him innocently. He sighed for a moment, attempting to frown, but he knew he couldn’t, damn it. Instead, he seized the free hands of Aren and Adelaide so that they formed a circle with him directly across from Cedany.

”Do your worst, little one,” he shot back, grinning at her as he used the pet name as more of a sneer to egg her on. Not that he meant to be mean, of course. Ronan meant it only as a joke, just as she did. It was simply the way he and his sister interacted, pestering the other in the hopes of getting a rise out of them. ”I’m certain I can handle it.”

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Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir
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"You put an old man like me to shame out here.” A genuine smile graced her lips at that despite how her eyes shimmered threateningly with tears she forced down, earning a little bell-like laugh from his wife as she murmured her thanks bashfully.

“Don’t be so hard on yourself, you’re doing just fine.” Genevieve assured him, squeezing his shoulder gently and ignoring the pain in her chest. He was sweet. He at least tried. But he wasn’t Ronan, and he never would be. She frowned when she couldn't quite control her expression, choking on her apology, getting it caught in her throat as she danced in tense silence. Gently, she shifted to press her head to his shoulder, trying to do something to reassure him. She liked him. But he would never give her the happiness she deserved. So Ronan said he had to go.

"It's not you." She promised when the song ended. "I swear it." Genevieve added nervously, eager to please out of a deep set fear. "I think I've just had enough dancing for now." She said softly. It wasn't a lie, which was refreshing, she wasn't sure she could even accept if her beloved offered. Dancing was too easy to notice. If she stood among the crowd she could blend in and be no different than anyone else. It would be a fine substitute until it was decent to slip away. It was still wrong to just leave her family here. She leaned up and slipped her arms around his neck, hugging him for a few solid seconds as she whispered her thanks for his consideration, pressing her lips to his cheek to keep up the act. As she took a step back, she gave him a smile, squeezing his hand before slipping away into the crowd, glancing over at Ronan as she went and praying he would see it before she disappeared.

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Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir
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Freedom. At long last. Genevieve’s breathing slowed a fair amount when she melted into anonymity in the crowd. She moved towards the hors d'oeuvres, scanning over them and hoping her love would join her soon. She felt someone close in behind her, smiling in anticipation before she felt the crushing grip on her wrist, and she couldn’t help the soft sob of pain and horror she let out. She writhed, trying to get out of his hold as tears welled up, dangerously close to overflowing as she trembled, doing her best to avoid his gaze as long as she could.

“Look at me you ungrateful girl.” Hans snapped, his hold on her dainty wrist hard enough to bruise. “Hiding from me all night- I’m still your father.” The man hissed, cutting himself off in his own anger, every little action and word laced with hate. As always, he felt entitled to her, to everything. Such was the result of being spoiled from the moment he was born, never disciplined.

Instantly, the girl sobbed an apology, the dam breaking as tears flooded down her rosy cheeks, forgetting everything except the moment she was in. In her mind she was nothing but a child again, helpless as her father beat her for disobeying; Ronan, Cedany, her new family she loved dearly didn’t exist in her mind right now, unable to even comprehend them as she bawled.

“Stop that.” Her elder practically snarled, yanking on her arm, “Always making a fool of yourself, you wonder why I got rid of you.” he berated. “I hope your king keeps you in line.” Genevieve trembled before him and hiccuped softly, curling in on herself, obeying her father, doing her best to not draw attention, unaware her cries had already grabbed the gaze of the one most important to her.

“I-I’m sorry papa..” The brunette wept softly, doing her best to just please him as she used her free hand to cover her head the way she did when she was a child, trying to shield herself from being struck.

“Shut up.” Hans muttered, “Your mother would be ashamed of you if she were still around.” He muttered, harsh and disappointed as he dropped that bomb on her. His daughter froze, eyes widening in horror as she lifted her gaze to him, still trembling horribly.

“M-Mama..? Mama is gone?” She whispered apprehensively, her hand slowly falling to her side as her jaw hung open dumbly.

Hans grunted in reply, releasing her bruised wrist and shoving it away, disgusted with her weakness. "Months ago." He muttered simply, like he was just stating what the weather was like.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Cedany Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Adelaide Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Theran Ulfricson
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Ronan danced about with his siblings, pulling them along to the beat of the music. He was indeed far more coordinated than their father, but that meant very little. He could handle himself in battle, much like Ulfric could, but his dancing still lacked. The Ostwall style of combat relied all too much on brute force, and while it worked against unsuspecting opponents, it hadn't been updated in years.

He looked about now, unable to focus when he knew his father and his beloved were dancing. But when he found Ulfric, he saw Genevieve parting from the old man, hurrying off into the crowd. Ronan felt the urge to follow her, but he knew he couldn't. It would only affirm what Cedany knew. No, he couldn't do that. It pained him to be away from her for so long. Usually the two of them could spend as much time as they wanted together; Ostwall's palace was large enough that they were not missed if they wandered off together.

Time passed, and he tried to busy himself with simply enjoying the moment. But he couldn't, he knew he wouldn't be able to. His gaze wandered once more to Genevieve now, hoping to see her watching him so that he could let her know he wanted to be there. But she wasn't watching him - she wasn’t even facing him. He could hear Hans’ voice before he processed who the man was, and then he finally seemed to pick up on Genevieve’s sobs.

”I have to…” he began to say, trailing off as he dropped his siblings’ hands and moved away from their group. His pace was slow for just a moment, as if he were still processing the scenario. How could he have let this happen? He should have been there, not off with his sisters and brother. If he had been there -

Ronan pushed through the crowds now, causing people to stop mid-dance so that they could watch the young prince as he barreled down the warpath. He came upon Hans now, towering ever so slightly above the older man. It was enough, however, and he had far more muscle than the other man.

His hand seized around the back of Hans’ collar and pulled the older man back so quickly that he stumbled and almost lost his footing entirely.

”You best watch yourself, boy!” he sputtered after a moment of huffing in sudden anger. ”I’ll have your father on you faster tha-” A punch was thrown, and Hans was cut off as his nose crunched sickeningly. The older man screeched, grabbing at his newly-broken nose as blood waterfalled onto the floor. He watched the floor in disbelief and then looked up at Ronan as though incapable of making the connection between the two.

And Hans threw himself forward, throwing a punch of his own that split Ronan’s lip. The younger man gripped his elder and threw him to the floor before following him down. His fist moved far more quickly than he’d thought possible, catching Hans quickly in the throat before he began pummeling the older man’s face.

Ronan could feel his own knuckles cracking, but the sounds of Hans’ face and of his own bones crunching became virtually indistinguishable. It brought him a sense of pleasure to hear it, to feel it. He couldn't risk looking away from Hans, but how he wished he could see Genevieve's expression as he beat the man harder, ignoring the blood that began to speckle his face as Hans sputtered, struggling to clear his throat.

”You...fucker!” he snarled, so driven on by his fury that he didn’t notice the throbbing of his hand...or his father throwing himself into the scuffle.

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Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Loras Estermont Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir
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He couldn't help but give a soft laugh at the boy's half-assed attempt at a smile. It was endearing, and he could have sworn he'd given Freya that look when they were young and courting. How peculiar to see it now from Loras Estermont, he mused. But now he saw a change in the smile, and he smiled back.

"Glad to hear," he added. And perhaps he was glad that the young man wouldn't hold a grudge. Enough people didn't trust those from Ostwall as it was without him tripping over everything. He nodded at his name. "That'd be me." His smile faltered for just a moment at the bow. "Oh, stand up now. I'd rather speak to you as equals...too much of this 'Your Majesty' shit nowadays." He let his filter fall for a moment, speaking as he might have when he was younger, bolder. He'd become far too quiet in his age, for he had a role to fill. Oh, how he hated that.

Ulfric hadn't caught the cries until Loras made note of them. "Wha-" he started, cutting himself off as Loras spoke, offering to assault the man. No, no, he didn't want this. Not here. Not now. He wanted an evening to blend into the background, to speak to this man, hear the tales he had to tell. And now this was happening, and he'd have to deal with it of course. He was the king, wasn't he? He turned to Loras for a moment, as if to tell him to wait there but the young Captain was already providing instructions - to meet? That night? It seemed peculiar, he had to say that, but he wasn't the type to turn down an evening with someone else besides distant children and an even more distant wife.

"I'll-" he started again, but now he cut himself off once more as Ronan approached the situation. "Fuck" Ulfric took off now, similar to his son. He attempted to mumble apologies as he pushed through the throngs of people. They seemed to move with him, and, indeed, they did. Everyone wanted to have their own version of the story to tell the next day.

"Ronan!" He howled the boy's name as he threw himself quite literally into the fray. For a moment, both men were atop Hans, knocking the breath out of the man as Ulfric struggled to find his own footing again. His knees screamed in pain, protesting his actions. But he found traction eventually and seized around Ronan's waist

"Get up, boy!" Ulfric shouted in his ear, hoisting the young man off of Hans. Genevieve's father had given up his struggle a while ago, unable to see through the blood that streamed down his face. Instead, father and son grappled about now. Grounding himself now and using Ronan's own sloppy technique against the boy, Ulfric shoved him aside. Ronan reeled, and he nearly planted into the tile on his face, but he righted himself against a pillar and turned, wiping at his bleeding lip. His chest rose and fell harshly, and perhaps if one listened closely, they would hear the beat of his heart.

"I...fuckin-" He was cut off once more as Ulfric swung his own fist at the boy. Ronan pitched to the side with the impact, but he was caught around the collar by Ulfric who pulled the boy close to his face.

"Speak to me like that once more, and I'll be sure to show you what I'm capable of," he spat, his voice only audible to those in the first ring or two of spectators. "You think that's proper? I raised you better tha-" Ronan shoved off of his father, pushing the older man back as he stormed off. Ulfric's jaw hung slightly as he watched Ronan push a path through the crowd and out of the ballroom, practically seething. The doors closed behind him with a loud slam, but he moved only a few yards down a hall before the pain in his hand became too unbearable, his father's words became too heavy, and he let out a shout that echoed back to the hall.

Ulfric seemed to slowly become aware of the people around him, watching him closely for his next move. His jaw set as his chest rose and fell quickly. "Well, go on!" he cried, his voice a bit louder than he'd hoped. "Someone take the poor bastard out of here."

But his words fell on deaf ears. Most of the guests had parted by then, no longer interested in remaining. Few came for the dance itself these days. The real entertainment was in seeing who would be the first to soil the peace that was supposed to accompany such an event. And oh, how it had been soiled.

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Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir
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Genevieve had fallen silent by now, head down in shame as she let him berate her as good little daughters and wives were wont to do. She let tears streak her face as she shuffled uneasily, missing her mother terribly, only able to think of how much she must have suffered in her last moments, knowing her husband hated her and that her only remaining child wasn’t there for her. She was a monster, what kind of child didn’t try to stay in contact with their mother when they knew she was being mistreated-

She was torn from her thoughts by her father’s protests, lifting her pale eyes as she trembled, taking a step backwards as she saw everything happen in slow motion, every movement, every sickening sound heightened. The poor girl didn’t even notice her own shrieks of horror until her father hit the floor and her love was bound and determined to kill him with his bare hands if he had to. She stumbled back, hitting the table and giving herself a nasty bruise as the corner dug into her pelvis, eyes full of horror as she wept with no signs of ever stopping. She didn't know what to feel. Her father certainly deserved this. But it was wrong to think so, and she was a lady... But the sight of the gore alone brought her back to her brother's death, watching it all unfold helplessly, just like back then.

Hans was nigh unrecognizable by the time Ulfric appeared from seemingly nowhere, Genevieve letting out a broken sob as they wrestled. This was her fault. Every bit of it. She should have just listened and stayed quiet like her father said. Her head was buried in her hands as she bawled now, her horrible, heartbroken shrieks echoing off the walls as Ronan left. He was going to hate her. They were all going to hate her. She should have listened…

She repeated the hateful mantra over and over in her head, unaware as Hans was dragged off and flinching when someone tried to touch her arm. She screeched in terror in reply, running as far as she could, no goal in mind but to get as far away as possible. She had ruined everything, just like always.

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Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Cedany Ulfricdottir
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Cedany let her siblings, and the music, carry her feet as she danced. She laughed more than she had in days and enjoyed some time with her siblings. It didn't take long, however, before she realized that Ronan's heart was no longer in the dance. He was distracted and eventually, he excused himself all together and disappeared into the crowd. At first, she thought nothing of it.

And then she heard the yelling. The music stopped, the dancing stopped, the whole room seemed to hold their breath. Cedany, unable to help herself, pulled away from her siblings and moved towards the sound. The source, she discovered, was her eldest brother grappling with a man that filled her with disgust. Genevieve's father, Hans. She gasped and watched in shock and horror. If anything read too far into his actions, he was going to be in trouble. It wasn't long before her father jumped into the fight. It was the first time she allowed her eyes to move from the fight to Genevieve. Her face and eyes were the red and wet with tears. Cedany cared enough for the girl that she found her hands balling into fists. Hans had done something, she was sure of it, but the young girl had no power to make the man pay.

It wasn't just the fact that Hans was an ass, it was the fact that any man who made a woman cry and tremble with fear deserved the kind of hatred that burned in one's soul and demanded revenge.

Ronan, after being removed from Hans by their father, stormed off and Cedany took the opportunity to chase him down. She knew he was burning and angry and most likely didn't want to have conversation with his baby sister, but she knew he needed someone who knew his secret to talk to. Besides, she needed him to know that his secret was safe with her. She wouldn't trade the information for anything in the world. "Ronan!" She called after him, "Ronan, wait!" If she caught up to him she would urge him to stop, find a quiet room, and calm down. He needed a clear head. People were going to want answers and a punishment for the young prince.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Juliana Auclair Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Eleora de Croismare Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Loras Estermont Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Cyprian Auclair Character Portrait: Giselle Auclair
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Ellie remained behind the rest of the royals as Cy and Lucas stepped out, keeping her head down. Juliana’s voice scraped against her nerves, putting her on edge. Little did she know of the world changing thoughts that she had caused to come into the Captain of the Guard’s mind. Out of the corner of her eye, she could see the tall blonde who was holding tight to the king of Ostwall’s arm at the moment, and she worried for a moment about him before Cyprian caught her eye for a bare moment. The tiniest of smiles came to her lips, silently wishing him well. It was a great relief to her that he didn’t look absolutely haggard after that conversation. He didn’t look worn out, he looked... almost vibrant. She wished to take his hands, to ask him all about what had happened, but knew she shouldn’t, knew she couldn’t. One of those days. One of those days, she would be free to take his hands whenever she wanted... She hoped.

Her heart still squeezed at the words my love directed towards Juliana, though. She had no doubt in her Cy, but... It still hurt, sometimes, often, the knowledge that she was the other woman. She’d never envisioned this for herself, not in all her life, but... Cy was worth it, she knew. That much was a fact of her life. She’d walk over hot coals for him, and she could say that about few others, if any.

One of those may have been the tiny girl, Giselle. Cy’s daughter. There was something horribly, completely endearing about her, and Ellie had fond memories of telling her stories and singing her to sleep. Her gaze flicked momentarily to her as the child went to greet her uncle for... possibly the first time in her whole life. She couldn’t help but smile, finding the sight utterly endearing. She’d braid the flower into her hair later, she resolved, maybe after she’d twirled her around the dance floor a couple of times while waiting for Cy. She soon looked down, respectfully, avoiding looking King Lucas straight in the eyes.

Then, the queen’s words reached her ears, and where Ellie’s heart had squeezed before, it stopped now. Take Giselle to bed...? With the flick of her wrist and a sickeningly sweet look in those green eyes, her mistress had dismissed all of them save for Cy. How dare she? She swallowed hard, rather than protesting. It wasn’t her place, she couldn’t raise suspicion... She let her gaze flick to Cy for a moment. She’d meet up with him later. They always found time. It just... was another roadblock. That was all it was. A silent assurance was in her eyes, a promise that it was alright.

“Yes, mistress.” She whispered, at last, and curtseyed in response before reaching out, finding Giselle’s hand and offering her a smile and then a wink. Maybe they didn’t have to go to bed just yet. “Come along, highness.” She spoke to her. With a slight glance back, she led Giselle off--and more towards the banquet tables. “I think it’s a little early for bedtime, don’t you?” She teased gently, squeezing her little hand with gentle fingers.

Then, everything went to hell.

There was screaming and shouting and people were punching and swearing--Ellie’s eyes widened and she wrapped her arms around Giselle suddenly, gathering her close and protecting her with her arms. She crouched down a little, pressing one hand to her ear and defending her from having to hear the words that were being spat. It was the rulers of Ostwall, she realized, now spattered with blood and staining the dance floor. Gold turned to red, and Ellie held her breath, focused on keeping the little princess out of the range of flying fists.

Then, she heard a heartbreaking scream, and the queen of Ostwall flew from the room. Ellie was lucky her heart was strong, for it had gone through so much in even the past ten minutes, which was to say nothing of every other part of her life. It took but another moment for Ellie to look back down at Giselle, checking over her to make sure she was alright. “Let’s grab a pastry for you and go help her.” She said gently, finding her hand again. Gently, she reached out, finding the flower that Lucas had given the little princess and tucking it behind Giselle’s ear instead. “We’ll dance as soon as we can, I promise.” She added with a little smile. Then, she found a fluffy treat for her, hesitated, and found another, just in case Genevieve needed something sweet. She led her from the dance floor, out the door that Genevieve had fled from. “Your majesty?” She called out, keeping Giselle near, just in case. “I’m Ellie, and this is Giselle... Are you alright? Were you hurt?” Worry was clear in her voice. No one should have to witness that, much less experience that, and she hoped that they could be some sort of comfort to the young queen.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lucas Brigham Character Portrait: Loria Estermont Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Chryseis Wulfston Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Loras Estermont
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Inexplicably, Loras’ chest warmed at the sound of the gruff laugh that the older man let out. Well, perhaps it wasn’t too inexplicable. He was... On edge, seeking comfort, and he would take anything given to him right then. The king smiled back, and Loras’ crooked grin grew genuine. His gaze flicked down for a moment, and then returned to him. Ulfric denied his bow, and he rose, straightening up again and letting his arms rest at his side. He had to look down a little to see the king of Ostwall, and he wondered for a bare second if he could pick him up. It was an interesting thing to consider, and it almost made him chuckle. Even if he could, Ulfric would probably clobber him if he even tried.

"Oh, stand up now. I'd rather speak to you as equals...too much of this 'Your Majesty' shit nowadays." The king spoke, and Loras did laugh softly at that, both surprised and unsurprised to hear the filter slip. The man had a fascinating accent as well, and he wished to have a little more time to deconstruct it.

“That’s what happens when you’re a monarch, sir.” Loras teased a little, before hesitating the barest bit. He was a little unused to not calling people of his standing “majesty” and such words. Certainly the queen rarely answered to any other title... The thought of her left a sour taste in his mouth, though, and he moved his thoughts away soon enough. “It’s a pleasure to meet you, Ulfric.” He spoke his name, turning it into rolling vowels and strong consonants. Already, the name was something of a marvel, and he turned it into something more so.

ImageThen, the screams began, and Loras knew that they needed to move quickly. He wasn’t expecting Ulfric to run off, though, after a few stumbled words. He went after him, initially, partly out of that desperate desire to not be alone and partly to support him, but... It seemed that he had it under control, better than he would have expected. The man had quite a bit of strength in him. Loras let his gaze linger upon him for a moment longer, his hand resting upon the pommel of his sword at his side, making sure that the prince wouldn’t punch Ulfric or destroy anything besides potentially reputations and a man’s face. The queen fled--commotion and noise rose and fell, and the crowd began to move. His gaze flicked across the general exodus, and he caught a glimpse of starbright hair.

Ris. He had to reach his sister.

Silently, he wished the king luck, and hoped that he would see him later that night. Then, he turned, silently hoping that Ulfric had understood his message, quickly moving through the crowd. “Ris!” He called as he pushed past a dark haired couple. Loria!!




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Ris was quickly learning that she absolutely loved making this man blush, and resolved to do so more often. And then he stumbled over his words, and she couldn’t help but smile, settling back onto her feet. She had to tip her head up to see him, even when he was crouched down like this, which was to say nothing of when he straightened up. The amused glint remained in her eyes, particularly at the use of the word Lady once more. Goodness, would he ever cease with that? The title was fitting, perhaps, and eventually she’d have to deal with worse, queen, majesty, highness, but she was determined to get as many people into good habits as she could before they all slipped into terrible ones.

Her heart warmed at the smile that touched the Captain’s lips, and she scoffed playfully at his words. “I didn’t do all that much.” She teased. “I don’t know if I could possibly pick you up and spin you.” She moved as if to move her hands to her hips, though that plan was soon foiled by his taking her hand. Now, it was her turn to almost blush, her pale cheeks dusted with pink. She was aware of the fact that the kiss lasted a little longer than proper, that Wulf’s lips were a little chapped, perhaps a little too aware. Then, the Captain kissed her wrist, and it was only with great self control that she kept her cheeks from turning strawberry red. She squeezed his hand gently, offering up a soft smile.

Her plans were all being foiled that day. She was about to speak, to tease the Captain, and then there was shouting and the sound of someone being pummeled and then she was being pulled. For a second, she tugged away, her lips slightly parted as she took in a breath, about to call her brother’s name, desperately hoping that he wasn’t in the mess. Where was he? A split second, and she realized that it was Wulf who was holding onto her. She let him, at last, holding tight to him as she scanned the room for both Lucas and Loras. Where were they? Were they okay? She never let that breath out, her fingers curling in Wulf’s shirt. Midway through, she went up on her tiptoes, trying to find either of them. Image

Luckily, wonderfully, the commotion turned to conversation all too soon. She realized how tight Wulf had been holding her only then, and she hugged him tight for a moment longer before releasing him. She kept ahold of his hand, not wanting to lose him in the sudden exodus, keeping it even as he bowed. She really wished that he had chosen another time to start considering her wishes concerning her name, she didn’t have time for a proper reaction then, but she still smiled at it. “You’re fine.” She told him, almost cutting off the word instinct. She nodded sharply in agreement with his next statement, tugging him back to her, reluctant to release him anytime soon. Finally, her gaze lit upon a blonde head--and she heard a familiar voice calling her name. Hope rose up in her chest, and she squeezed the Captain’s hand once more before leading him towards her brother.

“Loras!” She called out, and his head turned to see her. Relief was clear in both sets of blue eyes, and he moved towards her quickly, wrapping her up in a hug. She hugged him tight with her free arm, finding his hand next. “I saw Lucas, come on.” She told him, taking charge instantly and moving towards where she had seen the spot of red and blonde. “Lucas!” She called out. She sighed when they broke through the crowd, the worry melting away at last. Neither her brother nor her fiance were visibly wounded, and Wulf had been safe with her. She released both of the men at her side, moving forward to clasp Lucas’ hands. “Are you alright?” She questioned, looking him over just to make sure, concern coloring her voice.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Juliana Auclair Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Loras Estermont Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Cyprian Auclair Character Portrait: Giselle Auclair
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Juliana nodded her head towards Lady Ellie as she went off with Giselle, her daughter, her princess and put her to bed, just like she had asked. She watched the two of them momentarily before her gaze turned back towards her husband. Once she saw his hand had reached out towards, she grabbed it and attempted a smile. The spark wasn't indeed there anymore and she could definitely tell that between them now. Juliana once questioned this to herself but place the thought within the back of her mind since she was still Queen and he was still King, her King.

As he guided them to the dance floor, she genuinely smile then he spun her around, which she gasp to because it was so unexpected. They danced seemingly all around the ballroom as she stared into his gaze, giggling slightly and trying to make this a happy moment but it wasn't. She let out a quiet sigh as she just continued to dance with him with the perfect amount of elegance that one has never seen on the dance floor. Once the song had ended, she saw that he was going to kiss her and it was to be the icing on the cake. Maybe he did still love after all.

Juliana smiled as she closed her eyes and waited for the kiss but nothing happened as screams rang out in the ballroom. "Oh, my." She muttered softly while her eyes peered up towards Cyprian then back towards everyone else's direction. Due to her size, she couldn't see what was happening but definitely heard punches being thrown and women crying. Her ears twitched when she heard Ronan's voice along with Ulfric's as she hiked up her skirt and maneuvered herself through the sea of people before her but when she got there, the display was over. Her eyes looked for Genevieve but it seems as if she had run off, or something.

Her eyes then diverted towards the blood as she upset that they actually had gotten blood on her floor. Her beautiful floor. She walked away with the shake of her head back over towards Cyprian. "I suppose so. Next time, let's not invite Ostwall." She demanded with the firm nod her head as she heard her husband's next question and widened her eyes. He wanted to escort her to bed? Like together? Juliana laughed to herself at the thought then looked at Cyprian.

"I'd love it if you escorted me to bed, my love." She said with a smile while leaning up to give him a peck on the kiss. And yeah, the spark between them had indeed fizzled out. It was a shame because she actually loved him, too. "Yeah. This Kingdom isn't going to rule itself." She made a slight tease comment towards him as she grabbed his hand and started a small trek but she caught sight of Loras and quickly turned around and bumped into Cyprian. She let out a nervous chuckle before looking up at him. "Why don't we go the other way?" She didn't even give a chance to respond as she tugged him along, clenching his hand tighter and tighter, by the second due to her nerves right now.

She didn't want to see Loras just yet though somewhere inside of her heart, it still yearned for him. She did do a quick look back towards his direction though it seemed as if he had disappeared off to somewhere else. Juliana exhaled a sigh as her and Cyprian had made it to her bed chambers, by now. Before entering, she turned towards Cyprian and rested her delicate hands upon his shoulders. "Why don't you come to bed with me tonight, my love?" She raised one of her hands up and caressed his cheek before trailing it down his arm and grabbing his hand as she opened the door, stepping one foot in.

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Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Cedany Ulfricdottir
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Everything hurt too much. His lip still trickled blood, but now his cheek began to swell from the punch he'd received from Ulfric. His head pounded against his skull, and Ronan clutched at his head, grabbing at his hair. But then his left hand screamed in pain, and he let out a gasp all of a sudden. It hurt more than he'd ever hurt before, and he swore the bones would sear right through his flesh with the heat that radiated from his hand.

Ronan could feel hot tears begin to well in his eyes, but he rubbed at them quickly with his good hand. He wouldn't show weakness now - he couldn't. He'd pressed against the wall in a corridor that was far enough out of the way that very few would have to walk past him. Unless, of course, they were Cedany, who, he assumed, had followed him to his current location.

"I ruined everything, Cedany," he hissed, pushing his shoulder into the stone wall as he turned to face her. Ronan cradled his broken hand in his good hand, forcing his breathing to slow. He tossed so that now his back was against the wall as he stared up. "I tried and I...I fucked up, Sprout. I fucked the whole damn thing up for father, for you and Adelaide and Theran, for-" He cut himself all of a sudden and let out another shout before sliding down the wall. He wasn't proud of this fit he was throwing, but he had few other options. If he were home, he could have left the palace and ridden off for hours until he regained himself. But he was confined here, and he hated it. He wanted to be home, to be with Genevieve and his siblings and away from his father. It wasn't fair.

He wiped at his eyes again. "You should just...go to bed, Sprout," he mumbled. Ronan picked himself up off of the ground, edging up the wall without putting his left hand to use. "I'm better now, I swear. Let me walk you to your room."

Whether or not she wanted it, he walked with her, for he needed his sister in that moment. She gave him a sense of stability he had only ever found in Genevieve. Gods knew he couldn't have her right now, as much as he ached and yearned for her.

Finally, they came to Cedany's door, and he looked down at her for a moment before placing a hand on top of her head. "Thank you..." Ronan ruffled her hair quickly, smiling ever so faintly despite the pain. "I'll...I'll see you tomorrow, alright?"

He let her give her own goodbyes, and then he walked across to his own room. The door was unlocked from the outside, but he locked it upon entering, perhaps worried someone would come for him as he slept. Or afraid of what he'd do if he left. Either way, he carefully removed his clothes, wincing each time his fingers were forced to move. But eventually he finished, and he drug himself into bed, under the covers, and prayed for sleep.

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Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Cedany Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Adelaide Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Theran Ulfricson
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His son had fled the hall before Ulfric could follow him, and now it seemed that the rest of the party was dispersing, leaving him to watch as Hans was pulled off. He wondered if the man would make it through the night - Ronan had given him one hell of a beating. Ulfric looked about now, and his gaze fell upon Genevieve. The poor girl trembled and sobbed, but he didn't realize why. Instead, he assumed she was frightened by the whole affair, and silently, he resolved to speak to Ronan about it.

"Genevieve..." he said softly, reaching out now to touch her arm. But she screeched and ran off, and he recoiled for a moment, frowning to himself. If he'd been more attentive, kept an eye out for Ronan, then maybe this wouldn't have happened. But it was far too late for that. He'd let his guard down, and the whole thing had gone to shit. And people wondered why he hated these events.

Ulfric gathered himself in a mental sense and moved across the hall to Adelaide and Theran. Cedany had already run off after Ronan, and he made a mental note to check in with his youngest, ensure she'd made it back to her room. He stopped a few paces away from his middle children, still frowning in a dejected manner. "You two shouldn't have had to see that," he remarked, biting his tongue for a moment as he thought to himself. "I shouldn't have you two walk alone either...come on."

Their family had been placed in the same hall, which was both a blessing and a misfortune. It was easy for them for find each other, but just as easy for others to find them. Walking back to the room was more unnerving than he'd hoped, and Ulfric checked over his shoulder with every step he took. Each creak in the walls was one of Hans's men following them, and the flickering of shadows on the wall became someone waiting to make him pay for not having stepped in earlier.

But they arrived soon enough, and he was quick to send his children to their rooms - Adelaide with a kiss on the forehead, and Theran with a clasped hand on the shoulder. And then he walked to Cedany's room and knocked gently before poking his head into the room.

"Sleep well, little one," he half-spoke, half-croaked. His nerves were getting the best of him now. He'd never feared like this on the battlefield, but now he was an old man who would stand no chance if he were stabbed in the back. Ulfric removed himself before Cedany could reply - he couldn't bear to speak anymore.

For a moment, he considered speaking to Ronan, but he couldn't do it now. No, his son had to prepare himself for the tournament - it wasn't in Ronan's nature to forfeit. And so he entered his bedroom now and glanced about after he'd locked the door and left the key on the bureau. He jumped as Genevieve stirred in their bed, but he kept himself quiet as he undressed and eased into bed.

"I'm sorry," he breathed. For a moment, he considered reaching out to brush her hair back or to kiss her. Something. But in the end, he turned on to his side and sighed. Only then did he remember what Loras had said, and he pressed his eyes shut. How he wished he could go back and speak more to the Captain - he hadn't felt that happy in years.

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Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Cedany Ulfricdottir
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Cedany's heart broke as she listened to her Ronan. At first, he wouldn't face her, but she could hear the pain in his voice. When he finally faced her, she couldn't help but reach for her big brother. His eyes were rimmed in red from tears he refused to shed. His lip was bleeding and the side of his face was beginning to swell from their father's punch. His hand was a mess, too. What Cedany could tell caused her brother the most pain, was his guilt.

She reached for him, her fingers lightly brushing against his bruise and smoothing back his hair. It was something their mother used to do long ago. It was one of the only memories she had of her mother. "Ronan," she said softly, "You didn't ruin anything. If anything, you protected our stepmother." The twinkle in her eye hinted she knew something more, but would never speak of it where anyone could be listening. "If anyone has a problem with how much you care for our stepmother then they'll have to answer to me." She smiled at him.

He seemed to regain some of his composure after a moment and requested he walk her to her room. She, of course, accepted. For a few reasons. One, she knew her brother needed her and two, there is no way she'd be able to sleep if she left him before she was sure he wouldn't do anything to himself. He wasn't self-destructive, but his anger was powerful. She understood because she could be the same way. "Stay here a moment. I want to wrap your hand before it gets worse." She requested as they stopped before her door. Disappearing inside, she searched for something she could use, but with her limited luggage, she only found a scarf that she could use.

She quickly hurried back outside and got to wrapping his hand. It wasn't perfect, but was enough. She gave her brother a careful hug and bid him goodnight. Before he left, though, she wanted to reassure him of one thing. "And Ronan. You don't have to worry about me. I may trade in secrets, but I would never hurt those I love." It was vague enough that anyone listening wouldn't read too much into it, but Ronan would understand. Once he left, she changed into her nightgown and climbed into bed. Sleep would take some time to come, but she would sleep tonight.

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Character Portrait: Juliana Auclair Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Eleora de Croismare Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Cyprian Auclair
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There was an obvious downside to holding a joust in the middle of the day. The heat was nearly unbearable in Seabel by the time the riders had begun to mount. Cyprian shifted on his horse and wiped at his forehead, but the glove did little to remove the moisture that had built up. He had been up for hours, bathing, eating, and preparing himself for the joust. It had been a while since he'd ridden, but he had insisted upon it. Next time the celebration came around, he'd be forty-one. Gods willing, he would still ride, but he didn't want to count on it. Who knew where they would be in ten years.
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"Are the mountains cold this time of year, boy?" he inquired, turning his mare so that he could face his opponents.

Ronan looked up from his hand slowly, frowning at the king. His hand still ached like hell, and so he'd kept Cedany's improvised binding on it, hoping that the thing would get him through this joust.

"I believe the mountains are cold any time of year to a man from these parts," he countered, gesturing about with his broken hand. Cyprian chuffed softly in laughter. He had begun to circle slowly on his horse, readying her for their ride. Ronan's stallion, meanwhile, had taken to stomping in the dirt, tossing his head eagerly as though he knew what his rider had in mind for them.

"Yes, I suppose." Cy held a finger out, as though requesting Ronan to put his thoughts on hold as he called over a flagon-carrying squire. In a quick movement, he tipped his head back and downed a few mouthfuls of the sweet wine within. After, he held it out to Ronan who took his own drink, gulping more as though it were some sort of competition.
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The herald beckoned them soon after their silent exchange, and Cyprian received his helmet from another squire. "Best of luck to you," Cyprian called as he kicked his horse and took off towards the stands. Ronan pursed his lips, off-put by his opponent's swift departure. He shouldn't have taken it personally, he knew that, but he couldn't help it. And so he received his own helmet from some chieftain's son his father had taken with them. And then he hurried off after Cyprian, meeting the man in the center.

The two knights nodded to their kings and queens respectfully. Ronan found Genevieve quickly, and he swallowed anxiously. They would have to speak after he rode. He needed to tell her everything, justify himself for the night before. Cyprian sought out Juliana's gaze for a moment, and once he'd found it, he made a quick, mock bow in her direction. He prayed she took it playfully, but it came bitter-sweetly to him. As he turned to his end of the range, he looked for Ellie. He hoped she was watching, for although he couldn't tell her, he knew he was riding for her. And he hoped she knew that too.

The two men had placed themselves at either side of the range, aimed to race at each other. They waited, and a soft hush had fallen over the crowds. Christoph and Corinna had ceased their argument to watch - Cora because she worried for her brother, and Christoph because he had placed a large bet on Cyprian Auclair.

When the horn sounded, the two stormed at each other, a flurry of limbs and metal hurtling down the range. Ronan's lance chanced to move just a bit to the right, and it caught with Cyprian's shield, nearly knocking the lighter man off of his saddle. The king exhaled sharply as he rounded the corner, regaining his composure while, at the other end, Ronan struggled to keep his horse under control while he dealt with the unwieldy lance.

And then they were at it again, but Cyprian was ready for Ronan now, and he predicted that Ronan would go for the same maneuver - which he did. His lance was raised ever so slightly, and it was just enough that the lance bypassed Ronan's shield and hit him in the shoulder. The wood protested under the pressure, but it did not splinter, and though Ronan gasped out loud, it did not pierce his armor. Instead, it pushed him sharply enough that he fell from his saddle and smacked the dirt, sending up a soft puff of dust as he landed on his back.

The prince remained where he was for a moment, far too embarrassed to stand. Cy rounded once more, taking a victory lap of sorts past the spectators before he returned to his tent where he'd remove his armor and recover for the next round he'd have to ride. By that time, Cyprian's men had moved across the field to assess Ronan's injuries, but he stood quickly and pushed past, walking off of the field and away from the festivities.
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From where he sat in the stands, Ulfric couldn't help but frown to himself. He hadn't wanted to be here either - his joints still ached from the night before, and his head throbbed. Sleep had not come to him, no matter how hard he had tried, and so he drank casually at a goblet of some sort of southern ale that had been presented to him. He hated the taste - it was too sweet and fruity for a man who had not even seen such things until he had taken the throne.

This was not his world, and oh, how he hated to be a part of it. If he had been a younger, more capable man, he would have ridden, but fate had not been kind to him, and so he was confined to a seat beside a woman who did not love him and children who would not acknowledge him while his son - his eldest, he should have been his dearest - stalked away, creating quite a stir through the spectators.

He yearned for someone to speak with, and his mind went to Loras once more. Gods, he wished once more he had not missed their meeting. He had to be here somewhere though, protecting Seabel's royals, right? Perhaps they still had time. Perhaps fortune would smile on him for the first time in quite a while.

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Character Portrait: Juliana Auclair Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Capheus Auclair Character Portrait: Cyprian Auclair
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Capheus was on the edge of his seat, watching the tournament. He wished that he could be with Asten right then, but his brother was the one currently going at ramming speed towards the prince of Ostwall. He had a front row seat, somewhere near the rest of the royalty, and his hands were white-knuckled where he was gripping the railing before him. He was half tempted to leap into the ring himself, disliking the sight of his brother potentially having his head bashed in. Image

The Prince of Ostwall blew to the ground in a cloud of dust, and Capheus was on his feet, clapping for his brother and grinning. He cupped his hands around his mouth, whooping for him, waving teasingly to him. Then, he saw him walk into the tent. Knowing that he would probably want some privacy, even just for a moment, he soon moved from his seat. “Your majesty,” he hummed with a grin, stealing the seat right next to Juliana. He forced himself not to look for Asten, knowing that he wouldn't easily find him. The stable boys were forced to work hard during tournaments, and he ached to hold him for a moment. Then, he looked back to the queen, offering up a crooked grin to hide the wistful look. “What do you think so far?” He asked curiously, glancing back to his sister in law. “Personally, I'm a little happy that I don't have to deal with being on a horse today.” He teased a little. He knotted his hands together, tipping his head back a little to move his curls out of his eyes. He took a moment to take in Juliana’s appearance.

“I have to say, I think that Cora would do the very best out of all of us on the horses.” He chuckled. “Speaking of which, though--” He shifted, his usual teasing demeanor becoming a little more serious. “Could I ask what happened last night?” He questioned, shifting in the seat to lean back against it. His mostly bare arm rested on the armrest, and he tapped his fingers against the smooth, sleek wood as he looked at the blonde. “I arrived late, see.” He went on, glancing to the field as the prince of Ostwall stalked off, earning whispers from the crowd. He automatically looked for Asten, and found only the squires. He remembered when he was one, and a little smile pulled at his lips. “These events, I swear.” He hummed. “There's always something exciting that happens.”

ImageHe paused once more, interest sparking in his gaze as he took advantage of the fact that as a royal, the queen had to remain in her seat and watch or risk rumors and gossip galore. Plus, she was in the middle, and so was going nowhere. His curiosity would be sated. “You may have to excuse me for this, dear sister in law, but why did you select your brother’s fiance’s brother as your Captain?” He asked curiously, tipping his head to the side. There was no malicious intent evident in his gaze, just an innocent want to know. The multitude of social endeavors around was absolutely stunning, he thought. He didn't doubt that even more would crop up. The Estermonts were an... Interesting set. He was technically related to them, maybe, through his nephew and sister, though there had never been any legal actions taken. Brother-not-in-law? Something like that. There was something about Ris in particular, he thought, she was... Fascinating. He often wondered what was going on in that blonde head of hers--she seemed more like her father than her brother did. But with Loras being the Captain of the Guard now... Maybe he’d underestimated him a little.

Sometimes, Capheus wished that he weren’t a noble. It was too much of a knot to unravel. He looked expectantly at Juliana, awaiting an answer from her, appearing more like an interested puppy than anything else.

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Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Cedany Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Adelaide Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Theran Ulfricson
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Genevieve had been silent most of the morning, avoiding Ulfric's gaze at every opportunity, trying her very hardest to not appear rude. Truly, she knew he hadn't sent Hans over on purpose... But he had been stalking her all night and his mere presence had drawn her father over. She greeted her stepchildren weakly when they rose, noticing the lack of her beloved among them and fearing it was because of her, that she truly had ruined everything for good.

And then she remembered the tournament was today, and she wasn't sure if that was better or worse.

So here the Queen of Ostwall sat, rigid beside her husband, having not spoken a word since last night. That was what you did when something went wrong. You shut up and ignore it, act like it never happened until things went back to normal. So that's what she did. Her stomach churned uneasily as she watched Ronan canter about before they started, almost flinching when their eyes met and instantly tensing when they took their positions. She was half tempted to clutch Ulfric's hand, just for some comfort. But Cedany sat beside her, she offered her a little smile, squeezing her hand lightly and then gripping her own seat in anticipation, calmed by her touch even if a little.

And of course he fell. She knew he would, but that didn't stop her from gasping sharply, jumping in her seat and forcing herself to remain seated in that moment at least. Her heart slammed against her rib cage, lips parting dumbly over and over as she tried to find her words.

"I'll go check on him." Genevieve managed to splutter finally as he stormed off. She stood, kissing Ulfric's temple and smiling nervously at her stepchildren before heading off, doing a shockingly good job at keeping her pace reasonable. Her legs shook horribly the closer she got, lip wobbling as she struggled to keep her composure, breaking into a run when they were both out of sight and sobbing his name.

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Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Cedany Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir
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Cedany's day started earlier than the others, but not for lack of trying. Back home, Cedany used to spend her mornings outside of the castle. Here, it's too dangerous to wander so far from the castle, disguised or not. So, while her internal clock told her it was time to move, her exhaustion from the night before and the want to actually sleep in for once kept her in bed. But not for long.

Giving up on the idea of sleep, she climbed out of bed and prepared herself for the day. Jousting would be happening today between the males of the kingdoms. Cedany rolled her eyes at the thought that men showed dominance by poking each other with sticks while riding horses. Cedany would rather just ride her own horse without the sticks. She'd easily outrace them. Especially on her own horse, Morrighan. Now that's a competition she could get behind. She looked through the wardrobe for an outfit that wasn't too dressy, but also not too casual for the event. She would still be watched by members of all three courts and still needed to be lady like even if she missed her trousers.

A spot of color caught her eye and she grinned. The dress from the islands. It was perfect. She changed quickly and pulled her back and piled it to the top of her head, pinning it in place with decorate hair sticks, also from the islands. To add more flare to her look, she adorned her wrists with as many jeweled bracelets that she had brought with her. When she was satisfied, she left to wander the halls. That, of course, grew boring with many people asleep, so she made her way to the kitchens for a treat. She used her charm to acquire some delicious pastries for breakfast. She nibbled on them as she made her way to where the jousting event was being set up and watched. It was a bit dull, but it was better than spending the morning in her room.

Hours passed and the others began to join her outside. To her easily concealed horror, Ronan would be jousting first. And his opponent is the much older, more experienced Cyprian Auclair. She preyed his hand would hold out. She cheered, loudly for her brother gaining some unwelcome looks from the members of the other courts, but she didn't care. She hoped her cheering would give him an extra boost of confidence. She was wrong. Once Ronan stalked off, which didn't surprise Cedany in the least, she took off to find him.

It didn't take long. When she found him, she rushed to his side. "Ro, are you alright? She looked him over, but her main concern was his hand. She gently took his arm in her hands and lifted it so she could take ahold of his hand without hurting him. She had just bent her head and began to unwrap her "bandages" when she heard footsteps behind her. She turned quickly to find Genevieve walking towards them. Cedany took one look at her brother and knew what she had to do. She gave his hand a quick kiss, and winked at him. Her eyes wished him luck. She raced up to her stepmother and gave her a quick hug, a big smile, and a greeting of, "Genni--uh--Mother. Good morning. I must get back to the others." She let go and raced off. She did indeed join the others, but she watched for others that might find the two lovers together. She hoped she would be able to stop them in time.


[[Scarlet, I hope the island dress thing was okay. I tried to have it match the picture and it's such an odd dress that the only excuse I could think that she would have it would be from a land not heavily influenced by her own culture. Like an island.]]

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Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Cedany Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Adelaide Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Theran Ulfricson
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The morning air had a lingering feeling of excitement from the night before, but it might have had to something to do with the tournament that afternoon. Only Adelaide knew that for her family it wasn’t the jousting. The fight from the night before still likely sung in the veins. Masks did little good protecting identity when everyone knew that Ostwall was so backwards and well uncivilized compared to them. What made them a force was what they had seen when Ronan got into it.

Addy shook her head as she dressed preparing for the day. It was going to be interesting to say the least. And now she was back into something more comfortable. Sure she was still forced to wear a dress, but this one was comparably much simpler than the one the night before. Still she would have rather not been in a dress, but there were standards to uphold. She could hear it now and imagined it was the same for her younger sister only much worse.

Everything seemed to fly by in a blur as she moved from one thing to another and it didn’t take too long before they were out in the heat awaiting the jousting. The young woman worried for her brother. She hadn’t seen him since he stormed off after the fight. There had been no need with Ced and their step mother going after him at various points of the night and morning. They had everything covered. Had something been really wrong someone would have said something she was sure, but she didn’t know how he was going to fair on horseback. The fight had been brutal. He’d hurt himself it seemed almost as bad as he had his opponent. Addy was sure that her father was in no better shape than his son especially at his old age.

Glancing in Ulfric’s direction she took stock of his movements and nodded to herself. She was sure she saw wincing here and there. He should have stayed out of it were her thoughts as she shook her head turning back to where the joust was getting ready to take place. Cedany was cheering wildly for their older brother and Adelaide couldn’t help but smile. Her sister cared little for everyone else’s etiquette. She loved her sister for it too.

But it didn’t help watching their brother get knocked from his saddle any easier. She felt herself wincing knowing how much that hurt on a normal basis without someone shoving a lance into a chest plate before hitting the ground. As he slunk off both their step mother and Cedany were off again and she only shook her head. Another time she could just sit here and wait for a verdict about her brother. He certainly didn’t need three women fawning over him. With a sigh, she shook her head and turned back to the matches wishing this was over already.



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If there was one thing Theran Ulfricson was glad of was that he wasn’t competing in the jousting. He would gladly let his half-brother take it whole heartedly. Though he wasn’t quite sure how his brother was surviving to be quite honest. The fight the night prior had been bad. Ronan was lucky their father had jumped in when he did. Though he had wanted to do that himself, but he knew he likely wouldn’t have broken up the fight. He would have helped his brother and only made the situation worse.

So here he sat just behind his family watching their brother lose with less than dignity. He couldn’t be blamed really. His opponent wasn’t someone most people their age would be able to best let alone while injured. As he watched his older brother walk off and their step mother and Cedany run after him he nodded. Well taken care of he was going to be. Ulfric never got that kind of treatment. Unless it was by him or out of duty by the others. Shame really. Sometimes he thought he was the only one who really saw that the man was trying; he just… didn’t know how to try. Why else would a man as hard and distant as Ulfric take him in when his mother had cast him out only to not care about his children? It made no sense to him.

Theran shook his head to rid himself of the negative thoughts and continued to watch the matches. Everyone seemed to be quite good which would make things interesting. Would they get more than just jousting? If so then maybe he would try his hand, at something that wouldn’t make a worse fool of himself than Ronan had done only a few minutes prior.