aeneia: (Default)
a e n e i a . ([personal profile] aeneia) wrote in [community profile] nonsuch2015-12-18 01:01 pm

& open gen post iii.

OPEN POST ( III. )
↠ lyrics, images, prompts, take your pick






mahalakshmi: (• soft tones have grown proud)

[personal profile] mahalakshmi 2017-04-15 01:25 am (UTC)(link)





[ She'd been excited enough the day before, when he told her she could have clothes - well, not that he had been letting her walk about naked - but that she could wear something that wasn't his uniforms, or her armor. When was the last time she had done that? Too long. That had been enough, really, to warrant any measure of happiness, and she does so like her pleasures more than her miseries. Moping and sulking had never been her interest. Even if she was still a knot of worry somewhere deep at being so far from her home, her war and her true purpose.

There was something wonderfully simple in it, when he takes her, shows her how to use the machine and informs her - that if it is her wish, he'd been given leave to show her about the city now that they had determined she wasn't any kind of threat. Feels herself unfurl happy with the thought. He was hardly keeping her like a prisoner, but the same four walls became too much after awhile, even if there was plenty to learn. Keep her mind busy. She still had such a bad habit of prowling about like a low sated predator.

She shoos him off once she gets the hang of it, hitting buttons on what she'd kept calling a book without much reference to what a datapad even meant. It turned its pages a little differently but it was definitely a book. Picking out things to wear that suited her, trying to keep in mind about what was normal here and that she didn't have a want to cause him more trouble. Because that had become the furthermost thought from her mind, as the days had gone by.

Far be it from her to admit that in such a small space, it was easy to get to know him, and find herself not at all mind that closeness. He was... so easy to share that time with. Fascinated, really, with the things he told her and more than that, his own thoughts when she could coax them from him about this piece of politics or that thought. To share the multitude of little things with him as she went about learning of him and he of her. He never pried when it was clear she didn't want to speak of one thing or another, no more than she did. Nor did he treat her like glass, thank Gods for small mercies, she might have had to swat him for that.

Which all of it means she's ready and waiting when it's time to go. Tried to keep in mind what he's said, that they don't like it too much when someone covered their face - what a change - but even so, she's dressed the way she preferred, brightly coloured, the material layered. The jewellery carefully arranged neatly now, rather than when she arrived. Walking out in the small amount of fussing over it, been awhile, and she does not have a lady to tend her and beaming up at him as she arranged it on her shoulder to keep it out of her way as she walked.
]

Well? Where are you taking me then, my keeper?

[ Her joke at this point, even if he firmly insisted to otherwise. A joke there too, he could take her down the street and straight back and it would be enough for her after staying inside. ]
komarran: (dramatic side look)

[personal profile] komarran 2017-04-15 02:52 am (UTC)(link)
[ The following days since her arrival had been strange. He had been given leave to ensure her safety and comfort as if she were a foreign dignitary staying on planet. Which, in a sense, she was even if she were a thousand years out of place. There would be no political ramifications if harm came to her, but there was protocol for this and the time of a hostile Barrayar had long passed now. She was of interest to them, more in how she arrived and what it could mean, and as a guest on-planet, Imperial coin was to see to her well-being within reasonable measures.

Initial investigations had turned up nothing of interest. No news, it was decided, meant she was cleared for the basics and he was grateful to get her out of his flat. Confining her was the farthest from what he wanted to do and he knew even he would go stir-crazy from staying inside for so long. He takes the opportunity to get her to a store for civilian wear and has the day planned out for them. If she were to stay here, it was only right he gave her a tour. With how much he's learned of her and her own time and place, he needed to return the favor in whatever amount he could.

He waits for her to finish patiently, hoping she won't go too outlandish in her style. At least if she did, a cover story of her being a foreign visitor would hold water easily. Barrayarans would assume it simply by looking at her and hearing her accent, not many had been off-world enough to know the major planets much less smaller ones they could say she was from. When she's finished, he moves to stand and--

She was beautiful. It's a thought that flickers in his mind before he quashes it. She was his charge, staying in his home. He wasn't about to make her uncomfortable and her appearance as enough for him to let her 'joke' slide by this time. ]


We could walk around so you know the immediate area or travel farther out if you'd rather see more historic sights.
mahalakshmi: (• first of all sin)

[personal profile] mahalakshmi 2017-04-15 03:22 am (UTC)(link)
[ She looks up at him a smile, forcing her hands still to stop fiddling with clothes just a moment. It's been such a long time since she had just been this with someone, no restraints of a Queen at war. Where she could just spend the time talking with nothing else mattering.

Because it feels different again when he pauses after he stands, looking at her - wondering what he sees, but whatever thought he seems to be having goes quickly from his face and she hasn't learned them all yet, to know what it was she found there. Files it away, think about it later.

Her hand stays gathered in the material at her shoulder, turning her face away briefly to make sure it's sitting properly, pulling the material around where it covers the bare flat of her stomach, hangs down her back.
]

I think that seems a good place to start. [ Steps forwards towards him, the faint jangle of bells from anklets that she'd indulged in too. At least it means he'll be able to hear her moving about. ] Which is your favourite to see? [ Or rather, her plan is simple after that. ] You should take me there.
komarran: (so what's that)

[personal profile] komarran 2017-04-15 03:45 am (UTC)(link)
[ The jewelry is a surprise and he takes quick stock of everything she's purchased. Thankfully on Imperial coin and not his own wallet. He makes enough though it's modest.

He frowns lightly in thought at her question and starts to lead her out and back onto the sidewalk. ]


My favorite? [ That would be harder to narrow down though he has one way to help. ] Historical or personal?
mahalakshmi: (• now the brothers turn)

[personal profile] mahalakshmi 2017-04-15 03:56 am (UTC)(link)
[ Somethings, she really couldn't help being a Queen over - or rather, to her mind it's modest. Compared to say, the ten strings of pearls she used to wear, a ring on ever finger and toe. This is light, or so she would insist, even with the chains that hang at her ears and loop in her hair.

At least she wasn't inclined to being too extravagant. So far as liking gold a healthy amount went.
]

Personal, then. [ Happy to go wherever he pleased. ] I'm at your leisure.
komarran: (excited and slightly nerdy)

[personal profile] komarran 2017-04-15 04:01 am (UTC)(link)
[ He hesitates if only because his first thought is something that might be too personal. But it was a small piece of home on a foreign planet. Perhaps that realization alone would bring her some comfort in knowing that others have managed to carve a place out for themselves. ]

We will have to travel then. [ And he's on his wristcom briefly to order a taxi to their location. ]

There's a neighborhood nearby that's predominantly Komarran.
mahalakshmi: (• so kings may rise again)

[personal profile] mahalakshmi 2017-04-15 04:16 am (UTC)(link)
[ Part of him? Then - she most definitely wants to see that. Little as she had learned of it in their conversation under as much as she needed to know about where they were now. ]

Then I want to see it first.
komarran: (and another drinking icon probably)

[personal profile] komarran 2017-04-15 05:01 am (UTC)(link)
[ That she's truly interested has him relieved. He didn't want to bore her on their first outing into the city. ]

We can get food while we're there. [ Food he wouldn't have to cook. He had tried to keep the takeout to a minimum, but he could use the break. ] I used to eat there often when I was a student.

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mahalakshmi: (• would I still)

[personal profile] mahalakshmi 2017-05-15 07:54 am (UTC)(link)







[ Arnand Rao - taken of the name Damodar - had just turned ten years old. His learning had gone far, now that there was some stability for it to grow in, her wars with the English finished and England had been firmly kicked if not out of India entirely, then at least back to the Bay of Bengal and Calcutta. More manged, more closely watched, and her oath taken to the new Peshwa of the Marathi Empire. Powerful, because of it, though she still ruled no more than Jhansi, her small carved part of land on the edge of the great vast desert of Bundelkhand.

But they were not just Hindustan, anymore, the trains expanded the world, ships that went faster and further made the globe more knowable and if her Kingdom was going to survive through her and Gangadhar's heir, he would need to learn of that world beyond her own borders. After a long, careful month of consideration, she had put out a call for a tutor. Not - not a Hindi one, no, a European one. Which then it became a long debate with her advisers over it. Why should they let a foreigner in? To which she countered, one day, eventually they must and her son would have to know their histories, and she would not ask an Englishman to teach the Marathi or the Mahabharat, would she? Why would she ask an Indian to teach her son their languages and their stories? After that, the matter was settled and she put forth her need to those that could find her someone fitting. England might treat her poorly, but not every country would. Many were glad that it no longer had the monopoly on trade and were glad to help her, she knew.

So one after another, tutors came to visit her, and she greeted them all the same. Sitting behind a great cloth curtain, and her veil drawn over her face even so. Obscured to the effect her husband always cherished, to be mysterious and untouchable. Like a great Mughal bride, though she boasted no title of Empress. Arnand no longer so small that he could sit in her lap as he had when he was younger. He instead sat beside her, his face pressed into his adopted mother's shoulder as they eyed the latest stranger hoping to be a teacher in her court, to grace them through the doors. Her movements indicated mostly in the chime of anklets and bracelets, but for all that this was somewhat at her leisure, she was straight backed where her legs were curled under her. Sat on the raised platform that put her a high position than those around her. So that she may better survey them all, settled comfortably amongst many cushions and the richly woven carpets. As richly decorated as every corner of this hall was painted in flowers, birds, and depictions of the Gods dancing and battling up pillars and across ceilings. Dark corners illuminated with oil light, to make the mirrored panels dance and flicker.

She was obscured, but the court around them both was not. Either side of her curtain was lined her guardswomen, all with swords and pistols their own at hip and waist. Her guardsmen at the walls and under the high carved arches; the trust of foreigners still was not great that their presence was considered imperative. Courtiers milling between them, watching as carefully as she was everyone that was brought before her. As many enemies as allies there in their numbers, these days. A mix of veiled, jewelled women and gold adorned, hard-eyed men from every rank and caste. Her court which had been once just one of a few, had risen in prominence to be powerful for all she had come to represent. She took it as a sign of her prosperity, as Jhansi's population had rapidly expanded in recent years and many poured into her city.

Though, in quieter moments, her father's ghost was at her shoulder, reminding her to watch every success for a potential failure.

Because in the end, she had dismissed as many that had tried for this position as she had found some suitable. She watches him as her titles are announced, first in Hindi, then again in English for the mix of her courtiers. Declaring her to be Jhansi ki Rani, Lakshmi Bai, late wife of Gangadhar Rao, and her son - Damodar Rao - son of Gangadhar Rao. Who had fought and won on the fields of Gwalior and conquered the British, defender of the Peshwa. That in itself, a test of his own, to see how he reacted to all that trumpeting.

To be informed back, that she had the pleasure of meeting Captain Duv Galeni, who had come to be presented for the position of tutor to the Royal Prince. The announcer took a breath and her hand raised, the lotus' painted and stained into her skin prominent on her hand as her fingers turned to silence him. He falls quiet immediately and her hand turns again, wordless, to gesture the man forward to stand before her and in front of her court. If he couldn't handle it now, he would not be able to stay very long. The guardsmen either side of Galeni step back and he is given the leave to approach with a gesture from one of them to indicate.
]

Welcome to my Jhansi, Captain Duv Galeni.

[ Her words a solemn, contemplated before she speaks, the first ones she has said so far. ]
Edited 2017-05-15 07:54 (UTC)
komarran: (THIS CONTINUES TO BE RUDE)

[personal profile] komarran 2017-05-17 03:35 am (UTC)(link)
[ Not for the first time since he started this voyage, he wonders what is he doing here. He heard the call put forth by her kingdom, had been intrigued enough by the opportunity to come investigate it personally. That he had made it into the final pool of candidates is a surprise to him.

His gaze takes in her throne room. Guardswoman? Nontypical, but for a woman ruling by herself, he supposes its for both her comfort and a show of strength. Her own presentation is clouded yet regal. There's not much he can make out of her true form beyond the veil though he can hear the occasional jingle of jewelry about her person. Her son was important if he was this young and attending the... interviews? Meetings? Whatever this would end up being, for his potential tutor.

The long roll of titles doesn't phase him. He merely stands before her and listens, only moving when the guards finally indicate he is free to do so. Even then he is sure not to step too close to her, settling on a comfortable distance away. She may not be his queen, but she is royalty here in her kingdom and he is a guest, first and foremost. ]


Maharani, [ he returns with a bow. ] Thank you for inviting me. I heard you had questions about my skills.
mahalakshmi: (• been in the dark)

[personal profile] mahalakshmi 2017-05-17 04:55 am (UTC)(link)
[ She stays stiff in her spot, even as Arnand wriggles about besides her. He has been good, even for the length these interviews take, but there is only so much a 10-year-old boy can take before he will want to run around and play. Even so, he stays there, as determined to not shame her in front of strangers. He was a good boy, a strong boy. He never cried even when the fighting was at its worst. ]

I do.

[ Her arm curls around her son, as she wets her lips to continue. The women in front of him watch him as closely as she would. But where she sits behind the finely embroidered material, there is only so much she can tell. They are as much her eyes as she is. ]

Though, just the one. Which would you say is better? The works of William Shakespeare, or the tales of the Ramayana?

[ It's declared innocuously enough, but the room around them shifts, hanging on the words carefully for what he might say. Every other tutor before him has been asked the same thing, and everyone so far has come up wanting to her mind. Whatever she is looking for, she has not found it yet. ]
komarran: (gestures with drink)

[personal profile] komarran 2017-05-18 04:13 am (UTC)(link)
[ His brows furrow. What sort of question was that? It's clear she has an answer in mind she wants and he's not sure if it is the stories of her own people or the ones she wishes to be taught to her son.

He meets her gaze--or at least, focuses on where he believes hers would be beneath the veil--and shakes his head. ]


Neither. There are works of greater importance to be considered beyond the classics. [ Those works served as the surface that all sought to teach and learn. It left many others thrown to the wayside, forgotten. ]
mahalakshmi: (• to look at the stars)

[personal profile] mahalakshmi 2017-05-18 10:25 am (UTC)(link)
[ Not many men would even attempt to look so directly, to address so plainly, they scuff their feet, they turn their eyes down. Or worse, when they do look, they are arrogant, broaching, demanding, like through their sheer force of will they could barge past her curtains, her veils, dishonour in such manners.

As she watches him seem to look, it seems to be to meet, not demand or turn away. Like he wishes to convey and nothing else.

For a second, she doesn't let him know whether he spoken what she wishes to hear or not. When a courtier goes to speak, her fingers raise and once more they all fall silent. Her control here, is absolute, that much is clear - at least outwardly. Her hand stays up, hovering there. An in between state of neither forward nor back.
]

And which is better for a Prince?
komarran: (decisions are happening over dinner)

[personal profile] komarran 2017-05-19 03:06 am (UTC)(link)
[ There's no doubt she's in control here. As a guest, he's willing to be respectful, but not give up his full autonomy. He's not a subject here and acting as such would be an insult to both of them. ]

That depends on yours and his goals, [ he replies with a shrug. ]

My intention would be to discuss that while creating lesson plans.
mahalakshmi: (• so wave your flag)

[personal profile] mahalakshmi 2017-05-19 08:51 am (UTC)(link)
[ Idly, her fingers run through Arnand's hair, an affectionate gesture that comes as thoughtless where he tiredly presses on. Her silence hovers, again, in her slow consideration. If he's going to stay, he must learn the first and only rule so far as she saw it.

She was Queen.
]

You have not prepared one already?

[ The court titters, though for good and bad it was not clear, but clearly in amusement. Every other man that has come forth has stiffly outlined an entire curriculum to her, determined in their purpose and sure that the position would be theirs as soon as they said it. ]
komarran: (neutral but a cute neutral)

[personal profile] komarran 2017-05-21 02:25 am (UTC)(link)
[ The veiled queen had more than stoicism going for her. That show of affection toward her son tells him she cares more about her child than any perceived weakness that may be in front of a foreigner. ] It would have been presumptuous to do so when I do not know the needs of my student.

[ Nor the needs of the country the boy would eventually serve as ruler. ]

I do have ones I've crafted for previous classes available for examination.

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hornswoggle: (Default)

miranda / accidentally demands witchy au.

[personal profile] hornswoggle 2017-08-29 01:40 am (UTC)(link)



abraid: (Default)

miranda / idk what if they met au

[personal profile] abraid 2017-08-29 01:46 am (UTC)(link)


shri: (» you were sharp as a knife to get me)

[personal profile] shri 2017-08-31 11:17 am (UTC)(link)
[ The morning is quiet inside the walls of Jhansi - the fortress that cuts itself tooth like into the hills that make up the paths of Bundelkund that linked the one greater Kingdom of Maharaja Chattersal. Marathi now, where once Rajput had ruled and then all subjugated to British whom she had by blood and death and determination, rid her home of. Beaten them down to reduced treaties out of Central and North India.

But war was war and many paid the price - both good and bad. Such as it had been Asuka. One of her own ladies now. But still a scrap of a girl who she could hear running around outside now. Now doubt done something, she always had and she expected Asuka to tumble back in from whatever grand adventure she had taken herself off on the same as she always done.

With messy, messy feet. So even before she can step too far into the room.
] Asuka. Clean yourself before you start tracking mud into my chambers.

[ It's said from her settled spot amongst her other ladies, where they sit in a circle, laid against pillows, sewing together on a larger tapestry. ]
redheadcarrier: (so what)

[personal profile] redheadcarrier 2017-08-31 05:00 pm (UTC)(link)
[ Asuka has been used to living a relatively lonely life. It comes with the territory of who and what she is. Some would uncharitably call her a "half-breed". A Japanese mother and a European father, but she's never seen Japan (or at least, she doesn't remember it) and her mother is a fading, ghost of a memory now that she's moving through adolescence. She'd come to Jhansi through a strange and meandering path, one marked by blood and death and a dogged determination to survive after she'd lost what was left of her family in the chaos of war and revolution that gripped India.

Not that her father had ever cared over-much for her, anyway. After the death of her mother, she'd been left to tutors and distant servants to handle while her father handled the important business of extracting every last scrap of gold from India. Even here, she feels a little different, though. She's surrounded by women with dusky skin and dark hair, where her skin is pale and burns easily in the Indian sun and her hair is a bright, bright red. She is different and she tries to embrace it, tries to wear it as a badge of honor.

Lakshmi has made it easier.

Asuka is technically a servant (or at least, required to serve), but she hardly feels that at times. Like now. She has a city and a fortress to explore, with the Pahuj river winding its way slowly past the walls. The duties of a handmaiden or a lady seem so dull in comparison. She's been climbing the turrets of the fortress, barefoot and wearing a baggy shirt and trousers. Lakshmi's voice draws her up short though and she sighs, eyes rolling.

She's so concerned about dirt.
]

Right, right...

[ She has to duck back out into the corridor to find a damp cloth to wipe her feet clean, but she finally comes back in on her bare feet, no longer threatening to drag dirt and mud over the floor. She throws herself down dramatically, almost threatening to jog Lakshmi's arms as she stares at the tapestry that they're all working on. ]

All you ever do is sit inside and sew.

[ Which isn't true and she should probably be more respectful of the rani, but she has always, always been hard to control and eager to let a barbed tongue do most of her talking. Honestly, at her age, she should be taking the idea of learning how to manage a household (or at least handle domestic tasks) with more seriousness. ]

What is this, anyway?
libertatis: (10)

for lakshmi, modern 1886 au thinger

[personal profile] libertatis 2017-08-29 04:34 am (UTC)(link)




[He'd be lying if he said he remembers how many times she's tried to kill him in this partnership, or if he remembers how many times he's been ready to strike at her for a betrayal he knows that will eventually occur. Their kinds are not meant to work together, not meant to agree (even reluctantly) to put aside differences and take on something greater than what they were already facing. No, vampires are not the kind who trust easily, and their hunters? Even less. But the fact remains that there's a new third party now within the long-time feud of the half-breeds and their counterpart hunters in The Order and The Rebellion, and it's seeking to wreak havoc on them all.

This partnership isn't something they truly want- Arno would rather slink back into the shadows and go about his own life, and Lakshmi... well, he hasn't bothered asking, but he has a good idea of what she wants, anyway. It's not hard to tell when someone wants to murder you because you secretly can change into a bat-like form.

All of their disputes are moot at this point, however- this anonymous third party has been crafting something under the radar, leaving only a few clues as to their plans for those who have actually bothered to go looking. What they'd found was notes on a clear gas that induces a frenzy in half-breeds, and was a toxic danger to humans. The last they'd heard about anything remotely worth investigating was in The Corinthia in London, which, as luck were to have it, is currently holding a ball within its halls this very night. Which means they're going to a ball tonight. And a pair of saboteurs can't arrive without at least looking the part.]


Are you done yet? [There's a rapping on the door to the dressing room, and Arno waits for Lakshmi to open it. He'd handed her a gown through the crack of the opening earlier- though whether she's actually decided to wear it or is plotting his murder as he waits remains to be seen. The Frenchman sighs, looking at his watch and twisting his mouth in annoyance.] Lakshmi, at this rate we're going to arrive in poor time.

[His way of saying "please hurry the fuck up."]
shri: (» people talk to me)

trundles along

[personal profile] shri 2017-08-31 11:47 am (UTC)(link)
[ It's ridiculous, this pretence. This dressed up civility. Between them - going to a ball when they both remembered a time when men lived and died by these kinds of gatherings to now watch these strangely anaemic displays for people who played at power without a true understanding of what they were even dressing up in the borrowed grandeur of.

Ridiculous.

Almost as ridiculous as dressing up to play his lover or - whatever it was that people called relationships this century. Had they done this before? Had they been engaged that time - or was it married? What was the story this time to let them slink into the gathering together? Did it matter because in all these decades she had come to know him well enough to know him better than she known almost anyone else living?

One had to know their quarry after all if they were going to be an effective hunter.

And effective she is - that she looks the part all the way down. Perhaps that is what goads her, she ruled these engagements once. Not that she hungers for the power - she never had. But it's a hit low blow on old memories she knows better than stir up and yet slips into the shadow of easily. Because what she wants, what she really wants is not her youth, but to know that kind of rest ever again. Not the time for it though, as the dark red of her dress, the long wrap of material that she drapes expertly around herself. The gold she hangs in her hair, from her ears, decorated at her nose - comes elegantly posed.
]

No one worth knowing ever arrives on time.

[ It's the ventured call back at him, as she leans forward to touch up the last of her lipstick. Red and dark as the material. Using the dab of her little finger to clear up whatever mistake she had made at the corner of her mouth. ] Do just come in if you're going to loiter. I have no interest in your hovering out there like a bat.

[ Ha, ha, Lakshmi you're so funny. But at least she's decent if he does stick his head in - mostly. The dress still open at the back, the ties that need someone else to do up, scars and skin below it exposed without much care. The marks he'd left her from one encounter or the marks of some other beast to cross over them. An empty life, after all, was nothing she would ever be accused of. ]
abraid: (Default)

lakshmi / what if s72 au.

[personal profile] abraid 2017-08-29 01:42 pm (UTC)(link)


hornswoggle: (Default)

lakshmi / also s72 au if u please

[personal profile] hornswoggle 2017-08-29 01:51 pm (UTC)(link)


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