(1310-06-07) Dress Shopping Acquaintance
Summary: There is a chance encounter at the tailor shop, when Aurélie nó l'Envers comes across Desarae Mereliot. Dress shopping becomes a topic, but also a previous almost encounter, and a plan forms to deepen the acquaintance.
RL Date: Thu Jun 07, 2018
Related: None directly.
desarae aurelie 

Courtly Couture — Market Promenade — Marsilikos

Fine and tidy is the shop, a gifted tailor and her apprentice have set up at the market promenade of Marsilikos. The interior is kept in lighter tones, with birch wood floors that are covered with the occasional carpet here and a runner there. A pair of tall windows provide plentiful lighting during the day, illuminating a dark mahogany desk with a few drafts of designs scattered upon it. Catching the eye upon entering are two stately dresses fitted upon tailor dummies, elaborate bodices with shimmering embroideries, impressive classy necklines and wicked variations of sleeves that leave shoulders bare. Long skirts that tend to bunch up seem to be this season's fashion, often coming in layers with the upper layer slitted at the front to sport a differing shade and pattern

A dress form where clothes are fitted upon stands in one corner beside a fitting area, behind a drape that can be drawn, and a pair of two tall wardrobes facing each other are in an area towards the back. A chest with a number of colorful ribbons and other accessories is located beside a table where various rolls of fabrics are piling upon, qualities ranging from rough cotton to linen and more finely spun materials. There are rolls of silk in various shades, damask, samite and brocade, along with various patterns of lace in different hues.

The fair weather had been perhaps what had lured Aurélie outside, the comparatively cool temperatures had prompted her to take a cape along that is now resting about her shoulders, a fine thing of purple samite that goes along well with the dark green of the dress that can be glimpsed beneath. The courtesan enters the tailor's shop with a gaze that is downcast, a veil descending over her face but not covering the blonde hair that has been braided and then twirled into a bun. She is not on her own, as a guard trails behind her, a man in l'Envers colors who has been charged with her safety. The charge herself appears to be rather young, a fact that may not be glimpsed from her features, but from the way she pauses and lifts her chin, and her gaze goes awandering about, to consider the dresses on display with widening eyes and a soft intake of breath.

The shop is of average size, and it'd be easy for Aurélie on first glance to miss the man that's already within it. Dressed in drab grey he stands near drapes that separate off the fitting area from the main body of the shop. It'd be quite obvious that this man is a Cassiline, if not from his choice of dress, then from the twin daggers that he wears tucked into his belt. There's a subtle shifting of his attention to the young blonde's when she arrives with her guard, and immediate assessment made of them. "I don't know. Whatever you think," comes another voice from behind the curtain where he stands. "Black is simply black at the end of the day. Perhaps in scraped velvet then, and make if off the shoulders as in the design of the first gown we looked at." The voice sounds tired, and it's only a moment or two later that the holder of it is revealed as the seamstress that's dealing with it draws back the curtain and a female steps out. Dressed in black brocade, she draws the attention of the Cassiline back on herself as a nod is given his way. "Thank you Florent. You'll be glad to hear that we can probably leave now." A hand lifts to touch to her hair where it's worn in a loose knot at the nape of her neck, and it's in doing so that she catches sight of Aurélie where she stands. A frown at the veil. "Are you from Rose Sauvage? Do I know you?"

<FS3> Aurelie rolls Composure: Success. (5 4 5 3 8 4 4)

Fingers have laced before her, a slight turn of her head and she offers her own guard a nod of sorts, a subtle sign that he may hang back. But it is evident that Aurélie hasn't been out that often since her arrival to Marsilikos. At least not on her own. There is a lift of delicate fingers, reaching to undo the clasp that keep the cape in place. Courtly Couture is pleasantly temperated, no trace any more from the chill she brought in from outside. The cape is handed to an attendant, and Aurélie blinks as she notes the Cassiline, her head tilting as she gives him a curious look. The dress she wears is of courtly fashion, a bodice sporting a moderate neckline, with laces tied at her back. The gown has long skirts and short puffed sleeves. The skin is pale, and for the perceptive eye the reason for her visit may be obvious. Especially when having a look at her back. Where the dress reveals some skin of her shoulders, it also shows the upper end of a finished marque, of white lilies and a butterfly.

According to how she has been brought up to do, Aurélie lowers her gaze instantly when the young lady in black barges out of the changing room, and she shifts aside, almost expecting the lady to leave without granting her any of her attention. But Desarae stops, and that pause has Aurélie look up and meet her gaze. Noting the frown, her eyes widen, and with a brief moment of hesitation she elects to lift the veil and brush it upwards as to cover some part of her hair, revealing the comely features of a blonde d'Angeline. "My lady." At least it seems Desarae has addressed her, and so the courtesan replies with soft spoken greeting. "I am not. Nor do I think that we are acquainted."

"No. I see now that we are not," Desarae responds. The faintest of smiles ghosts her lips, though doesn't reflect in her eyes. "It can be difficult to tell when the veil is worn down." A breath is drawn, and if Aurélie is observing Desarae in the least little bit, then she'll note the tiredness that shows in the other girl's face. "I was a novice at the salon until recently," she continues on to explain. "So just thought…" Her voice tails away as the seamstress follows her out, three or four gowns, all black, laid crosswise in her arms. She notes Aurélie. "Eloise! Another customer in the shop!" A smile to the blonde woman then, and a curtsey dipped before she turns to Desarae. "I'll just go make a note of what we agreed on then, my lady. They'll be sent for approval when ready." And off she goes. One of the other servers in the shop brings out her cloak, and Desarae waits quietly as it slipped about her shoulders, enfolding her in another layer of black. Her attention remains on Aurélie, however. "Are you summering in the City perhaps? Your veil suggests that you are an Alyssum, and so I wonder if you have come here from Elua? The thirteen houses there are spectacular, I hear, though I am a little biased as to the charm of our own." It's perhaps the most normal conversation that she's had in the last few weeks, and the strain of it shows in her face.

<FS3> Aurelie rolls Perception: Good Success. (2 1 4 3 1 2 8 7 5)
<FS3> Aurelie rolls Politics: Failure. (5 2 3 6 1 4 3 3)

"It is the purpose of veils," the blonde counters softly. She too looks rather young, hardly older than Desarae by one or two years. "And yes…" She smiles, green eyes flicking down as she admits this, "I used to be of House Alyssum. Mont Nuit. Even if I left it, shortly after my debut." Her smile deepens, as if reminding herself of that fact brings her some confidence. "I am Aurélie, my lady. Aurélie Basilisque nó l'Envers.", the same introduces herself with a curtsey. Straightening she meets the dark-haired woman's gaze, and her brows wrinkle just a touch. "I do believe I have seen you though. Once. There was a masque at the Ducal Palace. Some time ago, I… believe you were there." A glance towards the Cassiline, and back at Desarae, but it seems, this courtesan is failing in putting the last pieces of information together - or she has just lived very secluded of late. "I am not quite summering here," the blonde elects to reply instead with a touch of rosiness to her cheeks. "It is that the lord who likes to keep me around him is spending time in Marsilikos, and I've been here for a few months already."

Attendants start milling about, and sensing the focus of the shopkeeper now turning towards her own person, Aurélie straightens a little as if to brace herself. But as Desarae has not yet left, the blonde courtesan hesitates to address her own purpose of visit, until the other lady has been adequately attended to.

"Ah. The Masque. Yes, I was there," Desarae admits, that touch of sadness revealing itself in her voice once more. "My Second of the Salon took me out that I might be shown off a little, raise the interest of those there for my upcoming debut. That night seems so long ago now." Her upper lip is dragged between her teeth, and she fiddles for a moment with the chain at the front of her cloak. "It is nice to meet you my lady. I'm Desarae. Desarae Mereliot. I'm no longer a novice at my salon, and I didn't have my debut in the end." The seamstress that had been dealing with Desarae returns with a parchment for her to sign. "Excuse me one moment." This to Aurélie as she turns to the counter that the receipt is spread on, and dipping the quill that she's handed, into some ink, she signs her name quickly. "If I could also have a caul of black netting made, that would also be lovely. I think jet beading upon it too." And that seems that so far as Desarae's affairs in the shop are done, though she's apparently not ready to leave just yet. She returns to Aurelie. "Are you looking for something particular yourself? They just took delivery of some beautiful Ephesian silks. Lighter and cooler for the summer months than the usually heavier brocades."

"The Masque, yes," Aurélie repeats, and there is a glint in her eyes as her gaze becomes distant for a moment. The event seems to have been memorable for her. "I often think of it. It was an impressive affair." She smiles a good-natured smile - until Desarae introduces herself, and the former Alyssum's expression dims into a look of realization. "Ah… I see. Lady Desarae… I am so sorry. I heard of your losses…" She blinks and lowers her gaze, pulling some of that netted veil back in place. The time for an interruption seems opportune, and Aurélie doesn't mind it at all, waiting there as she watches Desarae sign the parchment. She seems to be relieved, when Desarae returns and even seems to be curious about her own business in the shop. "I… need some gowns," Aurélie admits softly. "Some… that are cut out at the back. I think… I need another one or two where there would be a second layer of fine lace, caressing the back but while covering it a little, reveal what is beneath." Her head turns subtly and lifting her hand she touches two fingers to the area where he neck connects to the shoulders. A good thing, her ideas are heard by the tailor as well, so that she won't have to repeat them. "Silks. Yes. For the dress. I haven't yet decided on colors though."

Desarae draws a deep breath, her hands knotting together where they peek through the front of her cloak. She returns to what Aurélie had said to her before she'd turned away, but her response to the subject is brief. "Thank you for your condolences. They mean much to me to receive them. My father is returning to Béziers soon, but I shall remain in the City. My aunt petitioned the Prefect of the Cassiline Brotherhood for me to be assigned one, so now I am his ward." A tilt of her head her Cassiline's way. "This is Florent Sebastien Montchapatre. A Camaeline like yourself. We are getting to know each other's ways today." There's a tilt of the man's head at the introduction. "My Lady Aurélie." Her name is intoned politely, but he seems to be a man of few words, and with another faint smile, Desarae returns to their conversation. "I believe that damask rose and plum are much in fashion this year, though they might be a little heavy for your colouration. Perhaps the palest of sky blues or stormy greys might suit you better. You have a delicate colouration that shouldn't compete for attention."

To the Cassiline, Aurélie inclines her head pulling her veil a little aside as to glance his way. "My lord Florent," she intones softly, even as her gaze narrows slightly when she turns her attention back towards Desarae. "Is it true that they despise us?" She leans in to murmur this question into Desarae's ear. "Like Cassiel himself who disapproved of Elua's ways, and Naamah's too?" Another glance is given the Montchapetre, and Aurélie smiles, tossing even a wink at the Cassiline brother. "Hmmm…", this the blonde Basilisque makes to the suggestions of colors. "I'm not sure. Sky blue perhaps, yes. For one. But I'd also like to have one dress in a slightly more daring color. Could you bring me some samples of fabrics, Mademoiselle?" The latter addressed to the tailor, in the moment before Aurélie turns her head back to Desarae, the blonde and the dark contrasting by hair color as well as their history. "Are you… sad about your debut? That it won't happen? What salon were you of, my lady? You may have mentioned it, but… I haven't been much around the city, to be honest." She regards Desare with curiosity but also a bit of excitement. And then a little perplexed at her own lack of tact. "And while I must admit… I am slightly inappropriate… Forgive me. It's just, I haven't been much among people, of late."

<FS3> Aurelie rolls Charm: Success. (6 7 4 6 4 5 4 1 2 5)

"I have heard that they do, yes," Desarae says, her voice lowering to match that of Aurelie's. "But despise is such a strong word. I would prefer to say that they simply disapprove." There's a small blink to the wink that Aurelie throws Florent's way, and she can't help but glance over to see how well it's received. If there were a reaction, then Desarae's too slow to catch it, and with a slow exhale she refocuses her attention on Aurélie, her voice lowering further with what she says next. "I have decided to call him Flower. But, not to his face." She clears her throat and straightens a little as samples are called for by the blonde. "A little sad, yes. If my debut were going ahead, then that would mean that everything else that has happened, would not have happened. Does that make sense? It was going to be the debut of the year, and I had such plans. I was of Rose Sauvage, one of the red roses there. If in Elua, then I would have been fostered in House Valerian." A beat. "Why have you not been amongst people if you have been months in the city?"

<FS3> Aurelie rolls Composure: Failure. (2 3 2 3 1 3 6)

For a moment the lightness of young ladies chatting and giggling paints their interactions, and Aurélie seems to relish this, to speak with a peer in age and perhaps in other regards as well. When the blonde leans in to catch Desarae's whisper, the silvery giggle breaking free from the courtesan she cannot hold back, when the hand she lifts manages only to muffle the sound, slightly. "F…flower…?", she echoes, turning her head to regard Desarae, her eyes gleaming with mirth. It is an expression that fades a little, when Desarae speaks of her salon and the debut that was not to be. "I can imagine. The niece to Her Grace, the Duchesse. Some may have gotten their hopes high to win your debut, and now they must be disappointed." The mention of Desarae's former canon makes Aurélie shoot Desarae a glance, before she nods. "I see. As for my ventures outside of the manse, they have been few. But this will change now, I believe. It was a bit of both perhaps… my lord wishing to delight in my company whenever he returned from his daily duties… and me… being a bit anxious to go out on my own.", she tries to explain. "If that makes any sense…"

Desarae's smile, such as it was, fades in the face of Aurélie's mirth. It's as if she's not quite ready to allow herself the freedom to laugh. Not yet. "Yes. There was a certain vicomte whom was interested in me, and whom swore he would win my debut. Now we shall never know. There are other debuts coming in the following months, more than usual in fact, and so the City will soon forget about mine and what it might have been. I owe a debt of gratitude to Jacques, the owner of Rose Sauvage, and to Séverine, my Second. They put so much work in with me, and were looking forward to it all. Though it would have been hard to deny my release from Naamah's service, they could have made it far more difficult and awkward than they did. I should pay them a visit now I'm back on my feet. Perhaps," she continues to say, her mouth attempting another smile. "… you might like to accompany me about the city one day. Like you, I lack for company with the shift in my situation."

Aurélie smiles lightly. "There are always those who will be disappointed. I remember a few who were at my own debut, when they were outbidden. It is the way of debuts, and in your case, they may take comfort that eventually it was none of them who was allowed to claim the prize." There is a soft quality to her voice, as if she were used to speaking in soft tones, like the paws of a cat touching lightly the floor as it crosses a room, prowling it gracefully. "It must be difficult, to acknowledge that such highly anticipated event is not to be. To leave a House of Mont Nuit, or a salon of Marsilikos must feel similar, like leaving a family behind," Aurélie continues a bit thoughtfully. "Perhaps. Perhaps I would like that, to explore the city with you. I live at the l'Envers residence, in the Noble District. Should you need for company."

"Then you would know the Vicomte de Tonnerre," Desarae says. "Or at least I assume that you would. He went to Béziers and brought back the head of one of the foreigners. He is also one of those that wished my debut." A sigh escapes her lips, and she glances to the window and the passage of people outside. I should be going. I hope that you find a silk to please you for your gown, and I will send word to you regarding spending some time together. It's been so nice to get out of the palace and just breathe a little." Florent steps forward as soon as she indicates that she's to leave, perhaps more eager than her to leave the shop.

<FS3> Aurelie rolls Composure: Good Success. (8 8 1 1 5 5 3)
<FS3> Opposed Roll — Aurelie=Subterfuge+4 Vs Desarae=Perception
< Aurelie: Good Success (7 2 5 5 3 4 1 4 3 8 3) Desarae: Success (1 2 5 5 1 7 5 3)
< Net Result: Aurelie wins - Marginal Victory

There is the faintest shift in Aurélie's expression, her green eyes holding Desarae's gaze as she hears the title of that particular admirer. "What a gruesome thing to do," she remarks, as if she were commenting on the weather, as lips twist into a smile that is somewhere between slightly amused and appalled at the notion. When Desarae looks outside through the windows, Aurélie's gaze follows belatedly as if distracted by a thought of her own, but then she is quick to reply, "I shall find something, hopefully. At least I may use your advice in regards to colors. It has been pleasant…" And here she turns to face Desarae fully, "to make your acquaintance, Lady Desarae Mereliot." After which she lowers herself into a curtsey and then pointedly pulls the veil back in place, not without giving the dark haired Mereliot a faintly conspiratorial wink. "You shall be safe, I daresay." A glance towards Florent, and a nod, as her gaze follows the Cassiline and his ward, as he accompanies Desarae out onto the market promenade.

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