(1311-05-26) To the Glory of Naamah
Summary: The Dowayne of the Rose Sauvage promotes a distinguished Thorn of his salon.
RL Date: 26/05/2019
Related: Wild Rose Considerations.
raphael jacques-npc 

Jacques’s Office — La Rose Sauvage


Jacques Verreuil nó Rose Sauvage is a busy man. It is not often that he sends for certain members of the salon. But such is happening today, when a Thorn novice notifies Raphael of the Dowayne's wish to see him in his office. Said office is located at a corridor branching off the Mandrake wing, less used, as Jacques is known to abhor unnecessary disturbances. The novice leads Raphael into the chamber, and the Thorn courtesan will find Jacques already waiting, seated in a chair of dark mahogany. "Monsieur Raphael," he greets, moving to stand before gesturing for his visitor to have a seat in the opposite chair, across the desk. "I am glad that you could follow my summons so swiftly." His eyes consider the older Thorn, Jacques being in his late thirties. Before proceeding to the reason for his request, the Dowayne asks, "Would you like anything to drink? My cabinet doesn't hold much variety, but it has one or two flagons of uisghe. And one of red wine."

Raphael enters the room and shuts the door behind him, then occupies the chair indicated, inclining his head as a gesture of respect. "It does not do to waste time," he responds, tone pleasant if also efficient. "I will drink uisghe with you if you would be good enough to join me."

There is a minimal downwards tip of his head, a hint of a nod, as Jacques retrieves a flagon of uisghe, as requested. He pours two glasses, the kind reminiscent of work from La Serenissima, with dark twirls of black glass at the base. One of these he hands to Raphael. "I agree," Jacques tells him, his voice a dark but not unpleasant timbre. His gaze is probing, considering. "I have summoned you here to pose a question to you. You have returned to our salons a few months ago. I know that you have a history with us, and this is what eventually recommended you to us, to accept your return. Ever since this return, I have had an eye on you, Raphael. It seems, your presence has added a special nuance to the Thorns. A stable and firm hand, with a deeper insight that only experience can bring. What are your own thoughts, on your recent time here at Rose Sauvage? Do you regret your decision to come back to us?"

Raphael accepts this finely-worked glass, though he holds it in one hand for some time without drinking. He listens, expression betraying little of what he may be thinking or feeling just now. He lifts his eyes from the amber liquid in the glass to Jacques' face, which he watches carefully. "On the contrary," he replies. "I think it is the best possible choice I could have made. Demand for assignations with me has been greater than I ever anticipated despite — or rather, I think, because of — my age. And I am grateful to you as Dowayne for permitting it. Should it be in the best interest of the salon, I intend to remain permanently to continue to attempt to repay my debt both to this house and to Naamah herself."

"I am glad to hear," Jacques replies, but the expression of happiness sounds slightly hollow with a disposition that is more used to expressing fine threats. But the look in his dark eyes is that of genuine honesty. "You donated quite the sum to the Temple of Naamah, during the Days of the Companions. And yes, I noticed. Every contract of yours was reviewed and passed on to me. It seems, you add to our salon's success and reputation." A faint twitch of a smile there. "Now. There has been a development that makes it necessary for me to look for a replacement to fill a position. Baptiste has been entrusted with the position of Second Thorn, almost a year ago. But apparently, he has asked to be released from this commitment. So that he can focus on his service, but also potential roads of his future, that may happen outside of the salon. You have recommended yourself through your conduct and general attitude ever since your return, Raphael. You have the experience, and you have the authority. So I ask you… Would you be interested to be elevated in your position, to Second Thorn?"

Raphael simply nods at the enumeration of his advantages to the salon, confirming the facts without speaking to enhance them. "That is understandable," Raphael says. "At his age, he has many decisions to make about his future. Many possible roads branch ahead of him." He pauses to sip from the uisghe he has hitherto only regarded visually. After the pause this creates, he finally answers, "Yes, in fact I would be greatly interested. It would be tremendously meaningful to me to work toward the greatest possible success for this salon, and the greatest glory to Naamah." His expression shows the solemn intensity of moving forward toward one's goals.

Another nod comes from Jacques Verreuil nó Rose Sauvage, and this time, a ghost of a smile can be glimpsed upon his features. "Baptiste has served well in his time as Second," he remarks, "and he will continue to serve well in his time as courtesan, for as long as he chooses to remain with us. He has a certain flavor, as each Thorn has his own specialty. Right now, I feel it is your flavor that we shall benefit from. Your loyalty to this salon and to service to Naamah in general I have noted. Well then… consider it done. I shall set up a contract that will contain the details of your new position. In fact, I have already written it and waiting to be signed, Monsieur Raphael." At which he pulls out a parchment from below the table and presents it to Raphael. The new position will come with more income, certainly, and a raise in prestige. And it seems, Jacques has already signed it.

"Very good," Raphael says, nodding solemnly. He sets aside his glass to look over this contract that has already been produced. "I have many thoughts of my own on how things are best done in accordance with the character of this salon as I was raised to understand it," he says, pausing to look up from the contract and sip from his uisghe. "But of course I hope in the future that you will share with me your goals and vision, that I may best fit my ways to your larger project." Back to the contract, and he does not take very long to finish reading it and to put his signature to it once he has reviewed the contents thoughtfully. It would not do, after all, for a Second to fail to read the very first contract of his new position carefully.

"As Second of this salon, you can approach me with any suggestions and thoughts that pertain to the salon," Jacques announces. "I have filled this position, of leading the concerns of the Thorns some time ago myself, but I have found that leading the salon as a whole requires more focus. Which requires someone else to see to the matters of the Thorns, especially." He watches Raphael attentively, as the Thorn goes through the contract and finally applies his signature. "Congratulations," Jacques states, lifting his glass in a toast. "I believe we both shall benefit from our future collaboration."

Raphael lifts his glass, and only now that his signature is alongside the Dowayne's does he smile. He sets down his pen and lifts his glass. "Thank you," he says. "I believe it will be so. To the glory of Naamah." He drinks.

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