(1311-11-30) The Soldier and the Cat
Summary: Augustin has the pleasure of meeting Le Chat and his mistress Soleil.
RL Date: 2019-11-30
Related: None.
augustin soleil 

Court de Nuit

The Night Court thrives about an isle of green in the middle of the small square, that can only be reached through a tall archway looming over the street leading there from the Place des Mains. The archway is broad and high enough to allow the average carriage through and is made of red sand stone, carved with the likeness of a beautiful woman on one side, and a handsome man on the other, naked apart from a bit of freely flowing fabric ensuring somewhat minimal modesty. A pair of fish, painted golden upon that highest point of the arch is gleaming amidst the dark blue of the Mereliot crest, as if in blessing of the Lady of Marsilikos - and her approval and encouragement for those passing through.

It is here that the salons of the Night Court can be found, catering to the diverse tastes of nobles or just those who have the amount of coin to pay for the Service to Naamah that is offered here. The four great salons of Lis d'Or, Rose Sauvage, Coquelicot and La Glycine govern the four sides of the square, two storey buildings that look already impressive from the outside, in their classical architecture.

The area of green in the center of the square has an elaborate fountain with a statue of an impressive height of nine feet. A female of breathtaking beauty, only covered by the wealth of hair she uses to assure minimal modesty, a hand keeping some strands playfully pulled across her hips, as she stands with her naked feet upon a gigantic sea shell. Where Tiberians would recognize her as the goddess Venus, born of the sea foam, d'Angelines prefer to view her as a likeness of Naamah herself, in her perfect, otherworldly allure.

It is a fall evening. The weather is cool and raining.


Apparently in the early evening there is a gaggle of soldiers from the Citadel taking a young man to the Night Court for his first time. They've decided on the Rose Sauvage for their first stop, likely to try to shock the young man. But one man is hanging behind, an older man in his mid thirties, watching it all with an amused smile on his features. Augustin stands near the fountain, watching the younger men with an almost paternal air.

Near the fountain, there's the sound of a splash, and then the pathetic bleating of a kitten who is all wet and cannot figure out how to escape the stone bath he's fallen into. "Oh, hush, you little fool," Soleil murmurs as she tries to fish him out without getting caught by his claws, which is far more likely than the kitten actually drowning or really being in any danger from the fountain at all. "I told you not to play along there, but no, you had to be a kitten and not listen to me." Finally she manages to grab him by the scruff and drag him out, dropping him at her feet. He meows piteously and shakes himself off against her cloak.

Kitten rescued, Soleil pulls her cloak more tightly around her to protect herself from the weather and laughs softly as the young men head towards the Rose Sauvage. But still there are piteous meows at her feet, so she crouches down to try to give the little cat succor.

Augustin raises his eyebrow at the sound of the kitten's distress, and wanders over to the side of the fountain where the poor beast is. He chuckles a little bit, and offers his sleeve. "If you want something a little more resistant to destruction," Augustin offers wryly, before she manages to grab the kitten by the scruff. He shakes his head a bit, laughing. "The Companions bless us with cuteness when we are young so that people are eager to help us from the danger of our own terrible decisions."

Soleil looks up at the man and smiles, and she is truly as beautiful as a Scion of Naamah ought to be, radiantly golden with a warm and gentle expression. "It is very difficult to be so young," she says kindly as she loads the barely mollified kitten into a basket and picks it up. The little ginger kitten continues to mew as if his concerns are not being heard, so she pats him on the head. "Hush, baby. Le Chat, you are such a demanding boy," she says, addressing the kitten as if he had a title, and that title was 'The Cat'.

"Thank you so much for your kindness, sir, but I cannot have him clawing at your sleeve either, and Le Chat is very much a tiny duc in his own mind," she says lightly, her blue eyes full of fondness for the kitten. "I managed to catch him with only minor damage to my hand. It will heal and leave no mark."

Augustin mms. "Many of us are lucky we survived being so young, only through those same blessings of the Companions," Augustin offers with a snort. "Oh, most Ducs are not so bad. It is the Marquises you have to look out for; being so close to much greater power drives some of them insane." He looks down at the kitten. "And all cats are Princes in their own minds, rulers of their own domains. I can only imagine what their Parliaments are like. I cannot decide if they would be more or less civilized than ours." He nods at the description. "Excellent. It would be a shame for so lovely a hand to be scarred even for the noble task of saving a kitten."

"He was a gift from a duc when I left the City of Elua," Soleil explains easily as she checks out the little red lines on her hand; they are quite superficial. "The duc wanted me to be loved by the one who thought himself most important in any room, and thus he got me a kitten. Le Chat has a name: he is called Lord Percival. He is quite friendly, but mostly we call him by title." The kitten is young, so she must not be terribly long in Marsilikos. "But I forget my manners. I am Soleil L'Envers no Coquelicot, from the Gentian canon."

"Which one?" Augustin asks wryly. "I'd say I'll tell you if I think they're an ass, but if they're giving kittens to Courtesans they can't be too bad," he says with a snort. He looks down at the cat and offers a little nod, before offering a more proper bow to the woman he is speaking to. "A pleasure to meet you, Lady Soleil. I'm Sir Augustin de Trevalion, Vicomte de Rouen."

"The duc de Toulard," Soleil replies, on the off-chance that Augustin has met him. Le Chat has finally stopped crying in favor of licking himself, and she adjusts his basket on her arm. "It's a pleasure to meet you, my lord. Won't you join me at Le Coquelicot for a glass of wine? It should be warmer than standing out here, and drier, too. And we can see to the plight of the kitten. O sad kitty!" She laughs softly, as if she is mocking the kitten, which she almost certainly is, though good-naturedly.

"Nothing against His Grace de Toulard. If you had said the Duc de Azzalle, I would have had questions." Augustin responds with a little bit of a laugh, shaking his head. "I would be happy to. I don't need to stay while they are taking the young buck off to graze for the first time," he offers, with a glance over at Rose Sauvage one last time. "They found out how wet behind the ears he was, and decided they needed to fix that."

"Ah, well, the Thorns will whip him into shape, if he doesn't go screaming into the arms of one of the Roses," Soleil says with a knowing laugh as she motions for him to accompany her up towards the salon with its impressive classical architecture and styling. The kitten remains in the basket, blessedly quiet for the moment.


Le Coquelicot

Tiles of fine beige colored marble cover the floor in an ever repetitive pattern that is only broken by the circle of inlay work in its center, where through the use of white marble and dark red obsidian a likeness of the poppy flower comes to life, informing the visitor which salon it is he has entered. Long white drapes embroidered with a line of similar earthy dark red to the obsidian used in the floor are arranged to frame the windows, through which the parlour will be generously lighted through the day. Scattered about the room are comfortable chairs, light rattan fletching topped off with comfortable, cream-colored cushions, beside small tables where long slender flagons of wine stand at the ready beside goblets made of clay, glazed in warm earthy tones.

The air is that of relaxation, on more levels than just the physical; this extends to the mind, the soul, and the heart as well. An effect that is enhanced by the soothing melodies played by a lutist in a corner, by the pleasant subtle scents emanating from clay bowls filled with aromatic oils sitting on the tables; the warm lighting of oil lamps through glass shades painted with soothing patterns of waves in orange and dark red. Enhanced further by the soft laughter rippling through these halls where the visitor for once is allowed to take a break from his everyday trials and tribulations, from fears and worries, from tenseness in muscles and sometimes just loneliness.

Archways in old Tiberian style lead onwards to three areas, where patrons can find soothing in the way they wish to. Whereas a stairway at the back curves all the way up to the upper floor, where private quarters of courtesans and adepts can be found.

When looking out of the windows, you see: It is a fall night. The weather is warm and fair.


Augustin motions for the young woman to lead him toward the Salon, folding his hands behind him and walking easily alongside her. He moves with feline grace that likely belies years of training and use of the sword which is at his hip. "If you are from the Capital, how long have you been in the city?" He asks curiously. "I was last there for the Longest Night, when we tend to get called on to attend Their Majesties."

"Weeks now? Two?" Soleil replies with a little shake of her head as she tries to remember exactly how long ago she came. "I accompanied my grandmother, the baronne de Vezelay here. She is getting on in years, you understand, and the family thought that it would be good for her to have someone keep an eye on her. I volunteered to continue my service here, and I do not regret that decision," she notes as she pulls off her cloak to hand it to a servant before heading to get two glasses of wine herself. Her back is bared, and her dreamy and exquisitely lovely marque of Gentian violets is exposed in all its alluring glory.

"For Grandmother has quite upset the local family by bringing a house and a half's worth of furniture with her, and there are only so many chaise lounges one can fit in a room that already has a settee or two," the golden-clad blonde adds with mirth as she brings Augustin a glass of wine in a finely worked goblet, then motions for him perhaps to sit by the fire. "Whereas I get my own quarters here, and I am not quite so intent on cramming rooms with large heavy objects."

Augustin takes off his sword and then his coat with deft hands and holds them out to the servant as well. The sword, battered and foreign, likely draws a glance; if so, Augustin ignores it or doesn't notice it. He reaches out for the goblet when offerd, and moves to lounge easily by the fire where motioned to. "It is a wonderful thing to have your own quarters. I remember the decadent delight of it when I moved from a junior soldier to one who got his own quarters, and I would be hard pressed to go back. Although I daresay you haven't considered the possibility of bunk-chaise-longues." He takes a sip with a smile. "Do you find the service much different?"

"Well, I haven't really established much in the way of patronage here, as yet. But these things are always slow for a Gentian. We like to take our time and make sure our patrons are truly comfortable, relaxed completely, prepared for our services. After all, people are very vulnerable in dreams, and one's anxieties and fears can be revealed. Of course, this is all very confidential, and I keep journals privately for my patrons, so that I can track dreams from night to night, to compare and contrast, so that truly they can get the most whole picture of themselves possible," Soleil explains with a lovely smile as she moves to perch lightly on the arm of his chair, a small golden thing.

Augustin nods at her explanation, crossing his legs as he looks over at the golden haired courtesan. "I visited a Gentian from time to time when I was in the city, by the name of Mirabelle. She helped me with some recurring nightmares that arose as a result of my career." Augustin's face remains calm, but his wording elides the nature of those nightmares; but his association with soldiers and the fact that his sword is clearly not ornamental likely betray what kinds of dreams those would be. "It was very helpful in finding restful sleep once more."

"So you understand exactly how responsible and measured I must be to give you that restful sleep," Soleil agrees thoughtfully, watching her kitten escape his basket to go curl up by the fire. He has quite a long tail on him, the little orange thing, and his paws are nearly golden, and he looks quite cozy all curled up in the warmth. "If you are interested in continuing to work on restful sleep, I am available, of course, and I would be most pleased to aid you. I love helping people. It is one of the reasons I choose to continue. Oneiromancy is a true talent, and it seems inappropriate to deny others of the light that it can bring to their lives."

Augustin nods, considering the fire for a moment before he answers. "Yes. It is…it's own kind of intimate relationship, the one who gives you sleep and the one who needs it, and it is definitely one that requires care and consideration. I would definitely be interested in continuing that; it isn't like I need less sleep now as a Vicomte," he laughs. He looks at the kitten and its long tail. "He is going to get big. You can always tell in the tail and the paws."

"He is fairly certain that he should be allowed to sleep in the bed, but, and I have warned him of this before, that is entirely at the discretion of the patron, who might not want a silly Le Chat Roux in their bed," Soleil points out with a little laugh. The kitten's ears twitch briefly at the sound of his name and his mistress's mirth, but he continues to be a little orange ball. She reaches out very gently to touch the man's hair, to stroke a lock of it away from his eyes, and she smiles beautifully. "Perhaps you and I should continue to get to know one another, then. You can let me know the best ways to relax you," she practically purrs. "And I will help you get the best possible rest."

"I've spent my career as Naval Infantry, because I hated my father's insistance I join the Navy and wanted to be a soldier instead; so I've been on Navy ships for years. All of them have cats, to help with the rat problem and morale," Augustin explains, reaching out to gently scratch Le Chat at the base of the ears. "I have no issue with cats crawling over me after all of these years." He chuckles as some of his hair is stroked back and away. "Perhaps we should," he comments with a wry smile.

"Ah, but every patron should have the option to opt out of that sort of thing, and the novice dormitory assures me that they will take very good care of him whenever I should need them to," Soleil replies with a warm smile, watching the soldier pet her cat. The kitten stretches himself out comfortably to enjoy the scritching behind the ears, and really, he looks extremely content. The courtesan has a sip of wine from her own glass, then considers this thoughtfully. "I suppose you've seen many a battle at sea, then. Are you much of a seaman, or just really good with your sword?"

"I'm a passable seaman, but I'm really good with my sword," Augustine offers wryly. "There are, to my embarassment, stories and songs about it even. It's what has gotten me pretty much everything I've had in my career." He chuckles. "I was quite a surprise to our House's swordmaster when I started pushing him at the age of 13, and beating him by 15."

"At thirteen, my talent was discovered and I was dedicated to Naamah as a Gentian, and I made my debut at sixteen," Soleil notes thoughtfully, then takes another sip of her wine carefully. In the firelight, her dress looks all the more gold, and depending on the angle at which she sits, contrasts regally with her marque. "Unfortunately for me, no one has ever written a story or a song about anything I've done. But, to tell you the truth, healing people through sleep is fairly private work." She laughs softly, smiling at him genuinely, and she seems so very content at the moment. "Will you tell me your favorite story of yourself?"

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