EARTH Let Them Eat Cake

Discussion in 'Open Roleplay' started by Lucrezia Dionisi, Jun 7, 2018.

  1. Lucrezia Dionisi

    Lucrezia Dionisi Bella Senz’anima

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    [​IMG]

    Guastavino, NYC
    9 years ago


    Famed for its opulence and grandeur even before they had colonised the solar system, Guastavino persevered well into the space age. It mixed centuries of tradition with modern technology to the best effect – light shows and stunning holo-displays spanning the vaulted ceilings of the vast venue, dotting the glazed tile with stars that had long drowned in light pollution.

    The hall opened up to receive the first gaggle of guests at seven o’clock sharp. The colonnades either side of the atrium bathed in diffused reflections of the decorative pool at the centre. Fish streaked to and fro in the colorful water, scales glittering like the coins people would throw into fountains for well-wishes, long ago.

    Quiet chatter soon echoed through the spacious chambers of the venue as celebrities trickled in, fashionably late. The flash of camera drones only followed them to the doorstep – there they posed with their plastic smiles, delivered their quotes, and were off to blow egregious sums of money to win the ephemeral favor of the masses.

    The first few hours of the event were to be devoted to mingling, where the political could rub shoulders with the corporate elite – and good luck to anyone trying to tell the difference. If they had time to spare between exterminating the canapés and comparing designer dresses, the guests could always slip away to donate some of their hard-earned dollars.

    Nevermind that most of them didn’t even know who the victims were – the survivors of a catastrophic environmental fallout somewhere in the Caspian region, for those interested – all that mattered was getting your picture taken going in.

    It was a charity gala, after all.
     
  2. Niamh O'Rourke

    Niamh O'Rourke Protogen Researcher

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    Galas and social events were a chance for all and sundry to mingle. Corporate players, politicians, socialites, lobbyists, hangers on, it was reminiscent of the Sun King’s court. Daggers behind the fake smiles and treachery at every turn. Bright smiles for the flashing cameras before venturing in to enjoy a buffet and bar that would have bankrupted a small nation.


    Niamh snapped her fingers at a server, glaring at him until he’d scuttled over to offer a flute of champagne. She dismissed him with an imperious wave of her hand, taking a sip. Not bad but her tasting skills only extended to discerning the muck from the expensive.


    She’d dressed to kill, going for a sleeveless, off the shoulder black dress. Tight and figure hugging, tailored to catch the eye. She’d decided to wear her hair up and gone for jewellery that would contrast with her dress. She wasn’t too fussed with the Caspian affair. It had been badly managed of course but it had been the bungling of local government and relief agencies that had done the real damage. Of course a tragedy for those affected but there were enough people on Earth as it was. A few thousand accelerated deaths weren’t much of an issue. But the bleeding hearts had called for a display of sympathy, her own company among them. So she’d shed her dutiful ration of tears here and ingratiate herself with superiors.


    Her eyes roved over the crowd, picking out familiar faces, a surprising amount of them from gossip columns or television. Not exactly conducive to her own advancement though. As entertaining as jawing with a celebrity would be, conversing with some vapid reality star wouldn’t help her up the ladder.


    Quite apart from the annoyance of having to wait for her own plus one, she was in good humour. She kept a firm grip of her clutch and moved towards the bar, flashing bright smiles at anyone who made eye contact and murderous glares at those who dared to presume.


    Her mouth nearly dropped open at the sight of a face that she’d thought was well back in her past. A woman she still thought of at times but with little affection. “Lucrezia?” she said, her voice going higher out of surprise. The last time she’d seen her, Niamh had been a giddy relieved mess, having narrowly avoided penal servitude out in the Belt.

    @Lucrezia Dionisi
     
  3. Dolores Muwangwa

    Dolores Muwangwa Captain, UNN Thomas Cochrane

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    Dolores was only here as her father’s guest, and evidently, she resented it. Indeed, the event was sufficiently prestigious that her wife, Natalia, was only present as a guest of her own parents. There will be a day, Dolores resolved, raising her spirits with a self-assured smirk, when people will fight for my the honour of my presence. She was roused from her thoughts by a tug at her elbow, and Natalia’s smiling face looking up at her. “Come on, haven’t you a grand entrance to make?” She asked in that softly teasing tone she often used when Dolores got into one of her strategic moods. There were times, of course, when it was less soft. This was not one of those times, however. This was a happy evening, one of the few they got to share together, in the brief intervals of shore leave that Dolores’ career allowed her. There was, thus, a melancholy that pervaded their happiness. That inescapable feeling that no matter how happy they might be in the moment, it would only be a fleeting moment. Yet in an instant, Natalia linked her arm with Dolores’, and those concerns all faded, at least for the moment.

    For all Natalia’s teasing, Dolores’ entrance was understated. She might be the daughter of the Vice-Undersecretary for Trade, and indeed, that might be the only reason she had been invited, but she was here as the Executive Officer of the Munroe-Class Destroyer UNN Nanking, and her military bearing bore that out. She had dressed for a Gala though, wearing a long, loose, and flowing dress of traditional Nigerian fabric that danced with vibrant colours and sharp, angular patterns. It stood out a little, among the more sedate fashions of the other guests. It drew the eye, but not in a way that made it seem deliberate. Dolores liked that. She was all in favour of honouring her heritage, but if she could honour it in a way that aided her, all the better. Natalia, meanwhile, was dressed far more conventionally. She wore a deep purple gown of softly shining silk that accentuated the delicate curves of her body, and her dark brown hair was tied into a graceful braid that tumbled over her shoulder. Her eyes were her outstanding feature though, a verdant, striking green that could pierce to the very heart of a person, as Dolores knew only too well.

    They moved slowly through the crowd, mingling as only the children of diplomats could. To them, all this was second nature. They laughed, they shared solemnity, they shifted and changed from guest to guest. There were many familiar faces and more than a few unfamiliar ones, but they treated them all like old friends. Dolores loved it. It was The Game. It was her element. But for Natalia, she knew, it was a little more tiresome. Something she endured, more than enjoyed. So Dolores left her to socialise with a small group of her old classmates, while she did a bit of exploring. Natalia stood on the tips of her toes to give her a brief kiss before they temporarily parted ways.

    Dolores took a flute of champagne in her left hand, and assessed the crowd with the eyes of a sailor, searching the horizon for a storm. Or for a sight of land. She allowed herself a subdued chuckle, then took a sip of the champagne. For most, that metaphor, a roiling sea, might be intimidating. But Dolores was a naval woman. She moved quietly among the crowd once more, observing the major players. She thought she spotted the Secretary-General somewhere, although he had enough bodyguards to almost cloak him from view. Lucrezia Dionisi, the new Attorney General of New York, seemed to have a practical orbit of hangers-on lingering at her periphery. Finally, there was a practically wolfish young lady who seemed to be doing the same thing Dolores was doing. Lying in wait.

    @Lucrezia Dionisi @Niamh O'Rourke
     
    #3 Dolores Muwangwa, Jun 8, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2018
  4. Lars Harman

    Lars Harman CEO, Harman Industries

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    Lars Harman had been to several grand galas before, sweet-talking UN dignitaries, fellow businessmen, and celebrities alike, but it was only now at the ripe age of 35 that he felt comfortable being at one. Finally, after nearly fifteen years of hard work — planning, directing, predicting, manipulating — Harman Industries had broken 150 million dollars in yearly revenue. That made him influential. That made him important enough to sit with the big dogs — no, to be a big dog. And that was why he was here tonight.

    The gala would be beautiful, and Lars had dressed to match it. His suit was made from some very expensive material that he had forgotten the name of (and, to be honest, didn’t feel any different from a regular suit) and was tailored by an Italian master who charged an exorbitant fee. An understated designer tie that cost more than most Belters’ yearly income hung curled around his neck in a half-Windsor knot. A silk handkerchief was careful arranged in his breast pocket. Those who had an eye for those details would appreciate them, and those who didn’t…well, they more than likely wouldn’t be at this gala in the first place.

    Lars paused as he reached the door, giving the camera drones ample time to photograph him before continuing into the event space. Once inside the venue, he took a canapé from a server without really paying attention to how it tasted and made his way to the bar area. There were only a few people he really wanted to meet, and he didn’t even know if all of them were here. The Secretary-General was, of course, but surrounded with aides and bodyguards and important-looking politicians, he was a long-shot. The others called for a sharp eye. He ticked off the names under his breath, committing them to memory. Undersecretary Chanda Sirsikar. Admiral Carol Hughes. Javier Panagakos. Jules-Pierre Mao. Eileen Mbanefo. The most powerful men and women in the solar system, all within walking distance. It was exciting.

    But of course, he couldn’t be picky. So, taking a flute of champagne and maintaining a watchful eye for his selected targets, Lars began to mingle. Not five minutes had passed before he caught the eye of a woman moving through the crowd. More specifically, her unique outfit drew his attention, and, on closer inspection, her observant demeanor showed that she might be someone worth chatting with. Lars approached her.

    “That’s a lovely dress. Is it a traditional pattern?”

    @Dolores Muwangwa
     
  5. Dolores Muwangwa

    Dolores Muwangwa Captain, UNN Thomas Cochrane

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    Dolores had seen the besuited man coming, and had already turned to greet him as he approached. She moved gracefully, and her smile was the broad, gleaming smile of a trained diplomat. “Yes, it’s Nigerian.” She explained, tilting her head a little. Her dark brown eyes analysed the man before her in an instant. Expensive suit, expensive tie, and he’s making no effort to hide it. I’d bet on businessman, before politician. Besides, if he was at the UN, she would recognise him. The question then was, who exactly was he? In truth, Dolores had fallen a little out of sync with New York social circles after a lengthy tour of duty on the Nanking, but she was nothing if not adaptable. She had slotted back into this life without even missing a beat.

    Her hand extended in a smooth, practised movement. There was a broad, pitted gold bracelet on her wrist, but she had decided not to overdo it. Her fingers were long, elegant, but unadorned. “Commander Dolores Muwangwa.” She said by way of introduction, still smiling warmly. Internally, she wondered whether he had been expecting her to be a military woman. Dolores didn't try to hide it, but she also wasn't exactly dressed like a naval officer. She had contemplated coming to the party in her dress uniform, but Natalia had forbidden it. Nat does love this dress. She had bought it the last time she had been in Abuja, visiting Dolores' mother, and to her credit it suited Dolores well. It complimented her tall frame, though at times Dolores thought it made her look like a giraffe. Well, yes. But you're my giraffe. Natalia had said. Dolores smiled a little, her gaze drifting momentarily over to the table where her wife was sharing a boisterous joke with a group of fellow musicians.

    @Lars Harman
     
    #5 Dolores Muwangwa, Jun 8, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2018
  6. Lars Harman

    Lars Harman CEO, Harman Industries

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    Ah, Nigerian. The compliment had mostly been an excuse to begin speaking, but Lars did find the fabric beautiful. He made a mental note to investigate purchasing something Nigerian for his office decoration. A tapestry, perhaps. If there even were tapestries from Nigeria. He certainly had no idea.

    It was news to him that the woman was military. He would have expected her to be in uniform like the generals and admirals he had seen throughout the gala — but she was a commander. Commanders didn’t get invited to this sort of event. Logic dictated, then, that she was here for some other reason; not as an officer, but as someone’s guest — and that would explain why she felt comfortable being out of uniform.

    Without missing a beat, Lars took the hand that was offered to him. “It’s a pleasure, Commander. Thank you for your service.” He put on a practiced warm smile, just barely showing a white gleam of teeth. “I’m Lars Harman, I own an electronics company. I believe we may have made some of the sensors in your spaceship.” This was most likely true; the UNN was one of Harman Industries’ largest clients. He wondered how much officers like Muwangwa knew about the bureaucracy and economics behind the flying tin cans they lived in.

    @Dolores Muwangwa
     
  7. Lucrezia Dionisi

    Lucrezia Dionisi Bella Senz’anima

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    The new Attorney General of the sprawling metropolis had decided on a more understated ensemble for tonight. Floor-length black affair, ruby necklace with matching Louboutins, and Petter Røkke on her arm.

    Well; understated is such a relative term.

    Lucrezia was in the middle of weaving a honey web around some Deputy or another when the surprised echo of her name drew her attention. Her eyes darted from the lifeless droning of her conversation partner, searching the ebb of the crowd for the origin of the voice.

    “Would you excuse me a moment, Johannes?” She placed a soothing hand on the shoulder of the stocky man. Petter squeezed her elbow in appreciation as they escaped yet another riveting tale about the intricacies of the stock market.

    “Miss O’Rourke,” she intoned, all but dripping warmth. “What a pleasant surprise. I take it your job has treated you well, then?”

    Lucrezia took another sip of her champagne, then let out an abashed chuckle. “Oh, how unbearably rude of me. This is my fiancé, Petter Røkke.” Of the Røkke-SAAD Concern, supplied her pearly smile.

    He offered his hand to the woman, either unaware or purposefully ignorant of the game Dionisi was playing. Either way, Røkke exchanged the requisite pleasantries with Niamh. The world would crumble into dust long before the rich abandoned their games of pretense.

    @Niamh O'Rourke
     
  8. Hilde Matson

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    The bitterness of the gin left a tingle on her lips which prompted a pat to her thin pout absently thinking about injections. Gingerly, she felt along her lower lip, imagining what a slight inflation might feel like. Her gaze dropped to the martini, and she frowned slightly; would she be able to enjoy anything as good as this with such ease, or would she turn into a dribbling mess?

    The thought didn't hamper her mood for too long, as it was interrupted by a buzz from her clutch which was resting on the counter of the bar she was seated at. Without moving too much, she reached for it - expecting disaster to be displayed on the screen. Instead, she was remotely relieved to only see a child with a black eye and a gap-toothed grin proudly holding up a token of third place achievement. A smile barely cracked her thin lips, and she placed the device back in her clutch without a response. Third place wasn't really worth an immediate reaction; and she was relieved ever-so-slightly that this event took place on a weekend. It let her get out of a tournament, which was only ever full of irritating questions and side-glances.

    Another sip of the martini, and she eyed the room over the rim. There weren't any surprises thus far, but the guests were really only just arriving, each one more glamorous and peacocked than the last.
     
  9. Dolores Muwangwa

    Dolores Muwangwa Captain, UNN Thomas Cochrane

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    “The pleasure is all mine, Mr Harman,” Dolores replied congenially. Internally, she couldn’t help but feel a little pride in successfully assessing the man, and as he continued to speak, she began to put together a more rounded picture. He had the easy self-satisfaction that was pretty much ubiquitous with CEO’s, but he had at the very least received enough training that he could mingle with some level of competence. Of course, he could just be a genuinely pleasant person, but from the stories her father told, that was an exceedingly rare trait among high-powered businessmen.

    “I’m afraid I don’t pay a huge amount of attention to our ship’s origin, my responsibility lies more with the crew, but I’ll be sure to tell our Chief Engineer that she can direct all her complaints to you from now on.” Dolores gave Lars a playful smirk, before taking a sip of her champagne. "Do you get off-planet much yourself?" With the wealthy, Dolores found, it was often a coin-toss. They either remained in their mansions, cut off from the troubles of the rest of the world, or they jetted around in luxury ships, treating space as their own private playpen. She wondered into which category Lars fell. For their part, Dolores' parents had only ever been on the short run to Luna. Natalia wanted to visit the Gas Giants one day, but Dolores had never been on leave long enough to facilitate such an extended vacation.
     
  10. Niamh O'Rourke

    Niamh O'Rourke Protogen Researcher

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    Niamh tried to make her smile less resemble an animalistic baring of teeth. The condescending, patronising tone. Talking down to her as if the older woman was surprised someone like Niamh had even managed to get past the front door. "Oh please Lucrezia, no reason to stand on ceremony here" she laughed, "Niamh is fine". And don't dare talk to me like some absent-minded aunt.

    She'd been preparing a cutting comment on Lucrezia's marital status but she was beaten to the punch. Smooth as ever, the Italian introduced her next husband to be. Niamh gawked. She'd known the face was familiar but hadn't put two and two together. "A pleasure to meet you Mr Røkke" she managed to get out, "Oh, I was a client before of Lucrezia's, some time ago. I just hadn't expected to see her here is all". Lucrezia's smile was angelic while Niamh's brain screamed in anguish. She'd seen the profit predictions for the coming year, how had the she-devil ensnared a man worth more than some countries?

    She took a sip of her champagne, resisting the urge to gulp it all down. She kept the same sweet smile on her face, lifting up her hand. "Well that's two of us who are engaged then" she said with a laugh, irritated that she was second with her news. A diamond flashed on her finger, "I won't be Miss much longer either".
     
  11. Lucrezia Dionisi

    Lucrezia Dionisi Bella Senz’anima

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    “The pleasure is all mine, Miss O’Rourke,” said Røkke as he shook the hand of the younger woman. His native accent lingered only in the melodious cadence of his English; in everything else, the businessman was just as impressive a façade of lies as the lawyer at his side.

    They were almost too alike.

    The fine bubbles of champagne tickled her throat as she took another sip. It was the only flash of satisfaction Lucrezia allowed herself, covering the pleasure of an opening victory with the liquid delight of an expensive drink.

    “Would you get me another glass, dear?” It was a question only in phrasing; her fiancé accepted the empty flute like it was the Holy Grail itself, then disappeared into the crowd to hunt down another impressive vintage.

    Lucrezia turned back to the girl with a glittering smile. “I suppose congratulations are in order, then. Is that…” she leaned closer, more for show than anything else, “mm, Cartier, one carat? One point two? Well, it’s a beautiful marquise cut either way, Niamh.”

    “Will your suitor be joining us tonight?”

    @Niamh O'Rourke
     
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  12. Lars Harman

    Lars Harman CEO, Harman Industries

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    And I, in turn, will pass off those complaints to my loyal minions, Lars considered responding, but chuckled good-naturedly instead. Truth be told, he hoped his equipment wasn’t all that hard to deal with — he did genuinely respect his planet’s military officers — but it wasn’t his main concern. The UNN would continue to buy from him no matter what because there weren’t any competitors with the raw production capacity of Harman Industries. Also, of course, electronics were no longer his main concern.

    Lars shrugged. “Not as much as I’d like to. Most of our offices and clients are here on Earth, but I do occasionally get the chance to visit Mars. For business, of course, but I enjoy the change of scenery.” He took a sip of champagne and enjoyed the expensive taste. He kept champagne of a similar caliber on his private yacht; it was nice being wealthy enough to bring a slice of Earth with you into orbit. “Still,” he continued after the brief pause, “I can’t see myself traveling to the outer planets, even for a vacation. Too much time cooped up in a box. I like having the sky overhead.” Another, calculated, brief pause. “Do you ever get tired of space, Commander?”

    @Dolores Muwangwa
     
  13. Dolores Muwangwa

    Dolores Muwangwa Captain, UNN Thomas Cochrane

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    Harman’s question sent a brief twinge of guilt through Dolores’ heart, and she found her gaze drawn momentarily back across the hall towards her wife. Natalia was laughing at an old friend’s joke, her gleaming green eyes sparkling in the light cast down by the chandeliers hanging above her, and Dolores couldn’t help but reflect upon everything she was leaving behind each time she left for another tour. A sad smile broke across her face, as she remembered kissing her wife goodbye at the Luna spaceport, and came to terms with the fact that a similar parting was fast approaching.

    She took a small breath, and buried the emotion, taking only a moment to worry that she seemed to do that a lot. “I wouldn’t say I get tired of it, at least not any more than any Earther, but I am always glad to be home.” The weeks towards the end of each tour always seemed to be the longest, but having Nat waiting there always made it worth it. In a way, it reminded her of what she was there to protect. But there was also an element of guilt. She knew Nat hated to be alone. Perhaps when she was an Admiral, they could both move to Luna and spend more time together. "There aren't quite so many gala dinners on a UNN Destroyer." She quipped, to take her mind away from more unpleasant thoughts.
     
  14. Lars Harman

    Lars Harman CEO, Harman Industries

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    “No, I wouldn’t imagine so.” Lars followed Muwangwa’s gaze across the room to the where a group of people stood laughing together. She had looked in that direction earlier, he remembered. Though he didn’t recognize any of them, Lars supposed one was the reason the Commander had gained admission to the event. Someone high up politically or militarily — perhaps a significant other or immediate family member. Either way, they could be useful to talk to, and meeting Muwangwa would be a perfect excuse to start a conversation. Lars filed this information away for later.

    “Is this your first rodeo, then? Or have you been to this sort of event before?” Personally, his money was on the second option. The woman’s social ease and her comfortable demeanor were the hallmarks of someone used to elite gatherings. It took time to acquire those skills, to be able to fit in — and that was disregarding the nerves one often felt when in the same room as the most powerful politicians in the UN. It was possible that Muwangwa was just a natural…but highly unlikely. Politics was a game, and you weren't born knowing how to play.

    @Dolores Muwangwa
     
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  15. Niamh O'Rourke

    Niamh O'Rourke Protogen Researcher

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    Niamh's mouth was opening for a sharp retort before she realised that Lucrezia's request for another drink had been to her betrothed and not her. She sent him off like an errand boy before turning to offer another glittering smile. It was disarming. Niamh found it hard to argue. The woman was detestable but then one smile and she could have you melting. She tried not to preen as the other examined her ring, she'd take praise where she could. "Of course" she said with a smug look on her face, "No expense spared, the imitations just look horrendous". She dutifully examined Lucrezia's and oohed in response.

    "Of course she will, she's just a little delayed" Niamh said, hiding the irritation she felt at being stood up like this. "She's quite successful you know. A financial mathematician, works in Zurich mostly". Any chance she could get, she'd boast. "Not quite the head of her own firm but then she is a bit younger than your fiancé" another sweet smile.

    "Your dress is gorgeous" she allowed begrudgingly. Niamh wasn't sure she'd have pulled it off herself. "Are you still defending innocents like me then?"
     
  16. Dolores Muwangwa

    Dolores Muwangwa Captain, UNN Thomas Cochrane

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    Dolores had missed this. Verbal sparring, standing in the middle of a baroque hall wearing an expensive dress, trying to dissect your counterpart without even drawing blood. You just didn’t get that kind of thing on a warship. Everyone’s so direct out there. There isn’t the oxygen to waste on prevarication. She chuckled for a moment and took a dainty sip of champagne.

    “Mr Harman I grew up at events like this,” Dolores replied with a gleaming grin, leaning back a little, her eyes shimmering like opals. It was a display made to ensure that the man opposite her knew that this was Dolores’ environment. That she was totally at ease here, in an environment most would find terrifying. “And yourself?" Dolores inquired. "Did you inherit your way into all of this too, or did you have to claw your way to the top?” Dolores raised an eyebrow. She suspected she already knew what the real answer was, but it would be a little too forward to say it out loud.
     
    #16 Dolores Muwangwa, Jun 11, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2018
  17. Lucrezia Dionisi

    Lucrezia Dionisi Bella Senz’anima

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    “I knew you’d understand, Niamh.” And like a predator springing its ambush, she put her best hand forward. “It’s why Petter and I decided on this beauty.” Seven carats of cut carbonado set in white gold, lined with rubies and white diamonds. Nothing but pure, ostentatious decadence.

    And Lucrezia loved it.

    Oh, the years had not dulled the younger woman; quite the opposite. She laughed easily at the girl’s riposte, eyes sparkling at the challenge. “One learns to seek qualities beyond youthful good looks. I suppose it comes with experience?”

    The woman shrugged, a mild smile on her lips as she accepted a new glass of champagne. Røkke leaned in to exchange a few words in soft Russian with his fiancée. “I apologize, but I’m afraid I can’t continue to evade my investors. The epitome of persistence, their brand of creature. Enjoy your evening, ladies.”

    Lucrezia picked up the thread of conversation as if nothing had happened. “Not quite, Niamh, not quite – you were rather fortunate to have been… wrongly persecuted four years ago. Today you would’ve met me on the other side of the courtroom.” She turned her serene smile up a notch. “Attorney at law was such a mouthful compared to Attorney General, don’t you think?”

    @Niamh O'Rourke
     
  18. Shay Lockley

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    The youngest attendee was perhaps the one most disgusted at how phony the entire charity event was. Yes, its proceeds would certainly benefit its intended recipients, but from 16 year-old Shay's point of view, the focus of the entire masquerade was to bring together the elite just so they could further their plans in widening the gap between the rich and the poor.

    It was exactly the kind of thing his parents would attend. His father a CEO, his mother the Australian representative to the UN, and both key members of their local church. Shay knew this was all for show, but he'd be chided for openly sharing his opinion, or at least dismissed as nothing more than the typically angsty thoughts of a young teenager.

    Perhaps they were right, and maybe he might even grow up to become like them. He really hoped he wouldn't. This sort of lifestyle just wasn't for him, and he wouldn't be here if he had his way. Clearly not, and so he dutifully followed his parents as they rubbed shoulders with the city's elite socialites, smiling and nodding respectfully when his name was introduced.

    No other Mormons at the gala so far.

    Thank fuck
    , Shay thought to himself. Otherwise he'd have to sit through endless suggestions of how he should really think about missionary work, how he could make the Church proud, how much happiness and gratitude and inspiration he'd get out of it, et fucking cetera.

    At least the canapés were tasty. Too bad he wasn't allowed any of the alcohol.

    He quickly swallowed the last bit of his teriyaki beef lettuce cup, as he saw someone approaching his parents. Yet another stranger he'd have to learn the name of, at least for the night. A tiring routine he'd grown accustomed to.
     
    #18 Shay Lockley, Jun 12, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2018
  19. Lars Harman

    Lars Harman CEO, Harman Industries

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    Lars chuckled, though there was not anything particularly humorous about the question. “No, I wasn’t quite lucky enough to inherit this status.” A subtle dig at the majority of his fellow attendees, though not Muwangwa; she had evidently not chosen to take advantage of her high status and had instead dedicated her life to a cause that was, if not noble, helpful at the very least. That was more than many of these elite lawyers, businesspeople, and politicians could say.

    “I’ll admit that, in a way, I’m grateful for that,” he added. “Working my way up, figuring out things on my own…I’ve had to learn all my lessons the hard way. I’d never have really listened if it was my father lecturing me on how to run a company.” He chuckled again. There was truth in the statement, but thinking about it, perhaps he would have respected a successful and wealthy father more than his statically middle-class one. Oh well. Here he was, just the same.

    @Dolores Muwangwa
     
  20. Hilde Matson

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    Another tilt of the glass and even an optimist would call it empty. The rim touched the bar’s surface as an indicator that another was required in the feminine patron’s hand. The bartender, who’d been doing a good job up until now on fulfilling her needs, glanced in Hilde’s direction with a nod.

    It was only a handful of moments (long enough to make an appropriately dirty martini) before the gin-based drink was back in her fingertips. This was only the start of her third now, and she didn’t sip it right away. She and the bartender had established a trust based on the taste profile of the previous two drinks. And the number of olives only increased.

    Re-posturing in her seat, Hilde straightened out the tight fabric of her skirt against her athletically maintained legs. Seeing as this was a charity event, the blonde woman mustered as much charitableness within her to slide from the stool and rectify her posture once more. Sitting was a sight, but standing was a feast. Hilde had the figure of someone who put effort into her appearance and boy did she ever. The conscious thought of lip injections didn’t just occur to someone who was on basic; she put her career and curves ahead of a lot of things. Except gin. Gin was a close second to one of those things. She reached up and touched her close cropped blonde hair as she surveyed the land; there were several folks engaged in conversation which caused her (in her opinion) too-think lips to twist into a pensive state.


    [​IMG]

    Aha- there seemed to be a divine couple in solutide. Maybe not exactly useful for big plays, but she had her eyes on Undersecretary of Justice, and her career path suggested that next year was her year -- the more she made her goals known, and the more diverse her conversation portfolio, the more likely she’d be boosted. The squeaky wheel gets the grease, no?

    Gliding like a nun (one who’s feet seem to never touch the ground), the woman made an expert B-line to the two sharing close proximity; a proximity one could assume was romantic if not fully marital. Ah, rings. It was martial. The person she saw was someone who’d been a part of the UN for a trio of years with minor political pull, but good for an opinion now and then. History records showed Australia was made out of prisoners, but they were part of Earth now. Well, they’d always been part of Earth, but with more planets to be enemies with, distasteful thoughts about continents were dwarfed.

    “Can’t help but observe you two don’t have any cocktails in hand -- who’s fault is that?”

    Everyone in politics drank. It helped them stand each other's company.

    @Shay Lockley
     

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