(1311-09-08) Secrets and Peaches
Summary: The foreign Prince runs into a local Vicomtess and discuss peaches as well as a few secrets.
RL Date: 2019-09-08
Related: None
fiora shaffan 

Port - Marsilikos

Fortune laid the foundation for the grand port of Marsilikos; look how the arms of the land spread wide to embrace the setting of the sun, welcoming a bay of still waters rendered all the more peaceful by the presence of a small island to the south, on the flanks of which the waves cut themselves into powerless ripples as they move in from the sea. But what Fortune gave the D'Angelines their cunning and craft has improved to a hum of efficiency and culture. The natural bay has had its curved shores sharpened into straight edges bolstered with ridges of heavy stones on which the tides have left long mark when the waters are low, algae and barnacles hung onto the rugged stones. Then stone foundations have been piled out into the harbor to hold up wide wooden pillars and the great treated slats of the piers and boardwalks which extend into the bay, now at wider intervals for massive trading vessels, now at shorter intervals for private fishing and pleasure yachts.

The southern arm of the bay is reserved for the great sourthern fleet of the Terre D'Angan Navy, which is headquartered here in Marsilikos, and is ever a hub of activity, the giant slips outfitted to haul the massive warships up into the air for repairs, while further inland on the southern peninsula a forest of masts rises into the air where new ships are being built and old ones repaired in full drydock. Between the naval slips and the drydock rises the stately edifice of the Southern Naval Headquarters, glistening with huge latticed windows on the upper floors. Beyond the headquarters rises the massive fortified promontory of the Citadel, with bleached-white parapets and fluttering banners.

Markets and vendors throng the plaza at the innermost fold of the harbor where civilian and military seamen alike might find a bite to eat, supplies for their next mission, a good drink or a little bit of companionship. Far in the bay, that little isle sports a lofty lighthouse to guide the ships in by night.

The port is busy this summer morning. The sun shines down over the water and on the sailors and merchants who go about thier business here. Fiora is also doing business though its clear she is neither sailor nor merchant. Dressed in a modest yet elegant gown of fine purple silk that has been stitched with golden hued embroidery she stands out quite easily with her regal baring. Blonde hair is piled neatly atop her head in a loose yet fashionable bun with golden and amethyst combs adorning it. A pair of guards flank her as the blonde Viscomtess makes a slow circuit of the port markets, sussing out potential deals with a practiced ease.

Shaffan takes a casual stroll in the Port of the city of Marsilikos. His eyes wander from one ship to another. He registers that the workers and sailors of his own ship are quite busy by taking crates out of it. A pleased smile curls his lips up and the man takes out a bite from a juicy peach. He plays with a second one by throwing it up and then catching by his right hand. He is good at this and doesn't even have to focus on it. Instead he starts to observe various leisure establishments. That is when his dark brown eyes catch the sight of a lovely young lady. A luxuriously dressed man takes a pause. He bites the fruit one more time letting for the juice to ripple down his chin.

Shaffan puts a second fruit back in his pocket to withdraw a napkin, clean off his chin and then replace that napkin in his hand by withdrawing a fruit again. Then full of confidence, he moves towards the stranger. "Excuse me," the Prince address Fiora. "Judging from your look, you must be a lady of Terre d'Ange? Would you like?" He extends his hand offering a peach to the lady. But he immediately takes it back adding, "Only if you would agree to show me around, of course!" The man winks and smiles broadly.

As she is addressed bright aquamarine eyes turn to regard the forigen man who just spoke. An amused smile causes her lips to curve upwards just a touch. She notes the mans luxurious manner of dress with a calm and assessing look. "You are quite observant." She remarks wryly. "I am Fiora Rousse, Viscomtess de Sartene. It is a pleasure." She regards the peach with an amused look and tilts her head. "You tempt me with my favorite fruit and then you ask for something I'm not sure I can give." She teases him a bit and smiles slyly before adding. "I only recently arrived here myself. I fear all I can offer is company while we both explore. I hope that will suffice?"

"Well… you have me here!" Shaffan grins and gives a light shrug. "I can not refuse to give a favorite fruit to a fair lady as yourself." He offers it one more time. This time his hand does not move away. While she considers to take it, the young man bites his own peach and chews it slowly. Only after he swallows a bite, the foreigner adds, "Unfortunately, a company for today will not be enough. My dear Vicomtess, you owe me an escort to one of the magnificent Terre d'Ange festivities. Your husband will have to forgive me! After all, it was for a peach!" The man winks and then offers his arm for Fiora if she accepts it. "I am Prince Shaffan Zamani from Carthage. I have arrived yesterday at quite a late hour. We have been delayed."

Fiora reaches out a dainty hand and snatches the peach with a grin. Bringing the fruit to her full rosy hued lips she takes a bite savoring the taste and licking juice from her bottom lip. "I would be delighted to escort you to a festivity of your choosing then Your Highness. And do not fear my husband, what does not exist can do you no harm." She winks at him playfully and acceps his arm. Taking another bite of the peach she looks momentarily blissful as she slowly chews and swallows. Looking to the prince she smiles softly. "The sea is a wonderful yet decidedly unpredictable way to travel, delays happen. I am glad you made it here safely however."

"The men of your land must be absolutely dull if they allow for someone beautiful and funny as you wander around single. That's quite a surprise and makes me reconsider my thought of being in Marsilikos right on time. Perhaps, I am still stuck in the middle of an ocean and this is simply a hallucination. This is possible," the man nods, takes a bite of the peach and starts leading a young woman just simply straight since he has no idea where this path might lead. "You mentioned that you came here recently. May I ask where are you from? Is it the Great Exhibition what lured you to Marsilikos?"

"Or maybe I just have really high standards?" Fiora teases him back with a smile. "You would think me a figment of your imagination? A mere dream? Your Highness, I'm afraid I must protest. I assure you I am quite real." She smiles playfully and lets him guide her down the path with her hand on his arm. "My lands are on an island off the coast of Eisande. We mainly deal in shipbuilding and naval trade. I came to Marsilikos for several reasons, to make trade deals, find new investments and maybe even find myself a husband. The Great Exhibition is a facinating benefit of being here however."

"Oh, what a coincidence! I am here for the trade as well. If you like peaches, I can only imagine how you will enjoy tamr and the wonders our chefs can make from them!" The man pauses to throw a core of the peach under the nearest tree. "Excuse me," he takes away his hand to get out a napkin and clean off his fingers. Once that is done, he will offer his arm one more time and he would continue further with Fiora. "But I am not sure if I want to speak of the business today. Have you had a chance to find your favorite place for a wine here? You know, I heard many things about the wonderful Night Court here. What is that?"

"Perhaps I will have a chance to sample some of the delights of your homland at some point then? I do enjoy trying new things." Fiora admits with a sweet little smile. Once the arm is offered once more she accepts it with a incline of her head at his words. "Business can wait yes, especially with such charming company present. I haven't had much time to explore yet but I hear there is a place in the noble district that has nice wines." She looks at him curiously as he mentions the Night Court. "The Night Court is home to the courtesans, those in service to Namaah. There are thirteen canons each with different specialites. The City of Elua has a larger version than the one here. But the one in Marsilikos is worth a visit as well I should think. Does such a thing interest you Your Highness?" She regards him curiously.

"Please, call me Shaffan," the man waves off those formal addresses. "I try to use my title when it's absolutely necessary. Currently, we are not at an official gathering in the court. Then I would be wearing our traditional attire and you would be dressed in a more formal gown, I assume." He chuckles and then gestures for his companion to make a light turn left. "The Night Court has always intrigued me. I shall say that it reminds me of our harems. Except that it does not belong to one person. Everyone can use it! Mainly, I am interested into festivities. I heard that they arrange something very unique, very special, don't they? Do women also visit the Night Court as guests?" He asks curiously while his eyes observe various taverns and shops. "Talking about the delights of my homeland, I shall say that I plan on arranging lavish festivities. But I will need to talk to the lady of Marsilikos about it. However, I might spoil you a little bit with something different before then!" Shaffan grins.

"Very well Shaffan, but you must call me Fiora in exchange." She replies with a soft smile tilting her head. "Harems? I admit I know little of forigen cultures, but I am always eager to learn about them. As for festivities of the Night Court. I think you might be refering to the debuts they host when a novice comes of age. Normally it involves a large fete and an auction for the virginity of the novice in question, after that they are an adept. The exact details of the fete and auction vary from house to house though. And yes, women can visit the Night Court freely and there are both male and female courtesans too. Perhaps i could take you there some time so you can explore?" She smiles slyly. Then she blinks at the mention of spoiling her. "You don't have to do that. Not that I'm not flattered that you would consider spoiling me."

Shaffan laughs, "I don't mind, dear Fiora. But I will try to make it as a small surprise. One day, when you will not expect it!" He explains about his ways of spoiling young ladies. Then he offers a nod in regards of the Night Court. "I would like to go there with you then. My brother will be eager to hear more about it. Now let me wonder how it would be best to describe the harem for you…" He takes a few breaths. "Well, it's our household of wives, concubines, and female servants. You can have as many of them as you have money to support them. My father has four wifes and 21 concubine. I did not count the female servants!" He laughs once more. "My eldest brother had 14 concubines. They have been divided between my brother and me when my eldest brother died. So, currently I have 17 concubines. I brought my favorite three. Perhaps, I will be able to introduce you!"

Fiora blushes a little, her cheeks turning a pretty shade of pink. "I will look forward to it then." She replies softly and then listens as he describes a harem. Her head tilts and she considers what he says curiously. "So the concubines are your lovers yes? Like consorts are here? Except there is normally just one spouse and one consort here. That is facinating. I am curious though, why are the women divided when your brother died? Why pass another man's lovers to his brothers?" She looks genuinely curious, not judging just trying to understand. She smiles at the offer. "Would you? I would like to meet them."

"Well… Those women didn't have where to go. They worked for my family and my brother's death was so sudden. They could have chosen to leave but where they would go? Here they are not only pampered but they have a chance becoming wives of the Prince. Many of t hose concubines were slaves or common girls whom parents could not feed and did not have enough money to marry off, you know." He simply explains before changing the subject. "You know, I am talking quite a lot. So, please, now it's your turn. Tell me three secrets about yourself."

Fiora nods in understanding smiling softly to Shaffan as they walk. She laughs softly at his request. "But I was enjoying hearing you talk. As you wish though. You wish to know my secrets? Hmm." She considers a moment smiling slyly. "I enjoy sailing more than any other method of travel. I have often dreamed of sailing to a forgien land." She smiles wistfully then shakes her head before continuing. "I cannot ride horseback, in fact I would rather not go near horses period." She blushes a bit giving a hint that there might be a story behind this. "I enjoy designing custom ships as a hobby of sorts. I like to take different designs and improve or combine parts of them to make something better. I believe that things can always be improved upon."

"A lady by day and a brave saylor, talented shipbuilder by night! How interesting!" Shaffan is clearly amused. "This is not what I would expect a woman to enjoy. What about dresses and jewelry, shopping and cooking, perhaps, drawing or sewing!" He laughs and waves it off. "Apologies. I know that you are quite different here! It's intriguing for sure! However, I believe that I might have taken more than enough of your time. I should go back to my ship and make sure that a couple of very specific chests would be delivered to my chambers. Though, it was a pleasure meeting you, Fiora." He leans in and raises her hand. If the lady will allow, a foreign prince would place a peck between her knuckles. "I hope to meet you very soon."

Fiora arches a brow. "I never said I did not like dresses and jewelry Shaffan. I am allowed to like many things am I not? I admittedly have a weakness for pretty things as well." She smiles playfully. She shakes her head lightly and lets him place that kiss over her knuckles. "It was a pleasure meeting you as well Shaffan. I do hope to see you again sometime."

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