(1311-01-29) Rooftop Reconnaissance
Summary: Marco and Desarae reflect on their lives and what the future might hold for them both.
RL Date: Mon Jan 28, 1311
Related: On Ch'in and Courtesans
desarae marco 

Rooftop Garden


Dinner has come and gone, and as the skies over Marsilikos have given way to a deep and dark black against which stars coldly glitter, Desarae has made her way to the rooftop gardens. She's in the company of her Cassiline, and tonight a maid also dutifully hovers, albeit comfortably ensconced within the refuge of the small iron arbour that's warmed by a brazier and liberally padded with cushions and furs. Desarae has chosen to forgo such comforts afforded by the arbour, and leans instead against the railings that looks over the city's port and out across the bay towards infinite blackness. She wears the newest of her sable furs about her shoulders, its hood left down to expose hair that gleams as black as the night and diamonds which sparkle in her ears to rival the stars in the skies.

Marco makes his way out into the gardens wandering quietly. He looks lost in thought as his feet take him around the gardens slowly. He pauses as he notes a small grouping and he smiles faintly as his eyes linger watching quietly. He drifts closer though not so close as to upset the Cassiline, "My Lady. I'm sorry that I abandoned you the other evening. I hope you and Denise had some opportunity to catch up?" He asks studying her thoughtfully from the side.

"Good evening, Lord Cousin." Desarae turns her head towards Marco as he arrives, the gentle colours of her face stolen the silvering light of both the moon and the stars. In the luminous pallor of her face, a face that's accented by the darkness of her hair, her eyes seem that much sharper, the green of them unaturally vivid where they search for and meet with his own. "And yes. We did. It had been a while since I last saw her, though once we were talking it was as if we had never stopped." The ghost of a smile finds her lips. "A Shahrizai and a Morhban not snarling at each other. Who would have thought it."

Marco smiles warmly as she turns to him. He studies those pale features under the moonlight as he moves closer. He studies those sharp green eyes in the reflected light. "I'm glad you had the opportunity. I was… a little surprised myself but I suppose you might have more in common than differences." He grins, "Though it does make one wonder… just how close you are." He says eyes twinkling with his usual mischief as he draws nearer, "Finding what you seek out here?"

The tip of Desarae's nose scrunches, and a shake of her head is given. "We were never that close, but for the eight years that our lives overlapped as novices, we were continually thrown into each other's company. In many ways, the rivalry that there should have been between us was glossed over by the veneer of civility, and the rule that all are equal." Slender shoulders pull towards her ears, and the guard hairs of her sable furls lie stark against her fragile jaw where they kiss to her skin. "A Shahrizai happy to kneel and be subservient to another. I can see why you settled upon taking an assignation with Lady Denise." Her words holds the threads of a tease, and she looks away from Marco and back across the waters of the bay towards the inky horizon. "I'm not seeking anything, my lord. I'm simply admiring the beauty of the night."

Marco chuckles softly as he considers her, "Oh I wasn't thinking you were particularly close. Rather I can think of many a person, myself included who would enjoy the idea of having a Shahrizai and a Morhban kneeling before them." He points out as he takees a halfstep closer studying her and his eyes twinkle, "Then isn't that what you're seeking? To admire the beauty of the night?" He asks of her his eyes not leaving as he continues to look on with mischief studying her thoughtfully. "I'm not sure that I enjoy the night as much myself. I enjoy… places with life and people."

"I used to," Desarae admits quietly. "I loved the evenings that I served in the Salon; the peacocking of the courtesans, and the games upon games that were played as assignations were made and contracts undertaken. But unsurprisingly given this last year just passed, I find that my tastes have changed." Gloved fingers curl about the iron of the balustrade that prevents the unwary from plummeting over the edge of the gardens, and the breath which filters through her lips hangs white like dragon's breath in the air. "Which isn't to say that I don't enjoy those things at times, for I do. The Midwinter Ball was spectacular, and one which I hope I'll be able to attend again this year. It's a shame that you missed it yourself." Her head tilts back as she turns her face towards the skies, her eyes lidding heavily so that lashes cast shadows upon her cheeks. There's a moment of silence before she eventually admits. "I feel closer to my family on nights like this. Perhaps that's what I'm seeking."

Marco smiles as he listens to that with interest his head tilting as if considering and imagining the scenario with her words. He considers that, "Nobles are known to peacock… on occasion." He offers wryly and he shrugs and he smiles, "Perhaps we will attend next year." He watches her eyes lower and he stands a step closer a hand reaching up to rest on her shoulder, "I'm glad you find something here then. It's good to have things that hold our memories and ties close."

"When I first came to Marsilikos to join La Rose Sauvage, I missed my family and was so terribly homesick," Desarae confesses, her eyes visible only as a glimmer of green through the thick fringe of lashes behind which she hides. "Papa would say: Desarae, you only need look to the skies and find the seven stars that form the constellation of Eisheth." A quirk of her mouth as eyes open fractionally and slide Marco's way. "Seven stars, you see; one for each of us. He would say that wherever I was, I could look at those stars and feel close to home and close to them, because at any given moment, they might be looking at them too. Perhaps they're looking at them now, from the Terre d'Ange Beyond." She draws a deep breath. "I'll be seventeen this year, and then eighteen the year after. I feel suddenly old."

Marco's eyes remain on Desarae more than following her gaze. When her eyes move to him he's looking at her. It's a quiet look studying her and he squeezes her soulder. "You are not alone, and Eisheth still looks upon you as does your family." He offers his voice soft.

"Oh, but I am alone, Marco. So very alone." In the quietness of the moment, Desarae drops the formality of her distant cousin's title, and her teeth snick at her lower lip as her resolve comes close to crumbling. "And true enough, I have aunts and cousins that do their very best to keep my spirits up. They hope, I'm sure, that they will see me unfold like a butterfly from a chrysalis in a year to two, as if I'd never been broken at all. And I will, I am sure. I have to. And soon enough I'll be married to someone suitable so that I might fill the cradles in the Chavaise nursery with an abundance of babies to continue my line." A wry smile tips the corner of one half of her mouth. "Sorry, the nights make me maudlin. Don't you have a salon to be visiting, or a gaming hall to be gambling in tonight?"

Marco considers for a time clearly gauging trying to study her and how she is responding to this. He steps in behind her and simply wraps her in a hug, "Whatever happens, in a day or a year. Even if too am gone there will be others. It's not the same but nor is it nothing Desarae." He offers gently. "I'm right where I wish to be." He says simply and he smiles, "I enjoy those things, but my family is far more important. Which I suspect is the only reason our Aunt doesn't expend ore effort in reining in my notoriety."

"Ah yes. Your notoriety." Desarae leans into her cousin's embrace, her fur-wrapped form a pleasant thing about which his arms enfold. "But I truthfully don't see a need for you to be reined in. Do you? You've not brought dishonour upon the name of Mereliot, and nor have you been a cause of embarrassment to your vicomté, have you? At least, I've not heard that you have…" Her voice tails away, and she twists her head to look up at him. "You're young yet, Marco, and you're living the life that any young nobleman at Court might expect to pursue. Has our aunt said something to you to make you feel concerned?"

Marco smiles as he holds her gently and he chuckles, "While I certainly don't wish to embarass my vicomté or the like. It doesn't exactly make me high on the marriage eligibility list and just like you I have that consideration my dear." He shakes his head, "Not in… as many words though I am close to some of her handmaids and they have made mention of that fact." He pauses and he smiles, "So… you counsel me what I would counsel you about marriage?" He asks looking down at her eyes twinkling and near, "Just how much older than you do you think I am?"

Desarae smiles, then turns her head once more so that she's looking out across the bay, the lights of ships far out to sea twinkling like fairy lights upon the water. "Oh I know exactly how old you are, Marco. You celebrated your twentieth natality last year." A birthday that hadn't escaped her notice it would seem, despite her being closeted deep within mourning. Her hair is chilled by the night where it touches beneath his jaw, though there's warmth to be found in the way that he holds her. "And I don't know what exactly you would counsel me on with regards to my future marriage, but I fully expect to be wed whilst still young. But it's different for you, or so I'd assume. You could, if you wished, leave marriage until you're in your thirties, and still pick a wife that's young enough to produce a horde of heirs to carry your name."

Marco shrugs softly, "And risk leaving the Vicomte without a heir." He says absently. He considers Desarae, "I have a few years but not all that many." He opines with a shrug. He leans in and presses his lips to her hair, "And you have a few years at least. I'll tell you what I tell Isolde, I'll be sure to find you someone not entirely unpleasant." He assures her playfully and squeezes her again and he offers, "What is the one thing you want to do then while you have your youth?"

Desarae laughs, the sound soft and light, lyrical almost in the still of the night. "Well thank you for that. I'll remind you of that promise when my aunt decides to accept a match for me with some tired and grizzled octogenarian who happens to have exceptional ties." She pokes fun at herself with the painting of a worst case scenario, though she does give serious consideration to the question that follows. "I'm not sure that I have time for anything much between the lessons that I labour beneath the weight of. I wasn't meant to inherit Mama's title, so am ill-prepared to hold it. I have political and economical studies coming out of my ears, but if I really had to think of something I would like to do, then it would be to see a little of the world before I have to settle fully to the yoke of duty. Travelling takes time, however, and that's something I just don't have that much of."

Marco smiles softly, "You should speak to Isolde if you get the chance. Like you she was a courtesan though she was able to finish her training. Perhaps you can help each other." He suggests gently, "Think better of Armandine there are not that many Octogenarians worth such a pleasure. And you know she is fond of you." he says reproachfully stroking her side and then releasing her slightly, "You will learn what you need to. Where would you like to go? I'm sure we can find a reason to go as part of your duty… If you'd like I can work on Her Grace."

Desarae turns when Marco slackens his embrace, and the face that's tilted to his is blessed with a smile. "Perhaps I'll hold you to that promise. I'll have to think of where it is that I would best like to go." Her arms slide from beneath the bubble of warmth that's afforded her by the weight of her cloack, and her hands lift slowly to frame his face within the splay of her slender fingers. A kiss to his lips. "I should go. I've letters to write before I retire to my bed."

Marco assures Des as he studies her up close. "You can hold me to anything you wish My Lady." He says playfully and he leans in savoring the kiss. He doesn't push it overly far though his arms squeeze her again lightly but he lets it fade slowly and he smiles stepping back to bow his head, "A pleasure as always Desarae. I will try to ensure you aren't too tired after running through my dreams." He assures her playfully, "Think on where you would go."

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