A new direction (Sade)

Some one-thousand years into the future, Feila is now ruled by pop-crazy teenagers, computer nerds, and gun-wielding gangsters. This period is most like our present day Earth, specifically the 2000's, with the Internet, MP3 players, and towering skyscrapers. All natives are furry (Skin Avian are present here too). No native humans.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Freya listened with a smile as Etienne spoke about how he would raise children of his own, and she agreed, though she might add one or two things to it herself. She nodded at the end of his explanation. She noticed the moisture in his eyes, and gave him a soft kiss on the side of his muzzle. "I think you'd be a great father." She told him sincerely.

As he took hold of her hand, she let go of the power she was using to control the water on his body, and let it go where it would. She nodded in agreement that children don't always follow reason in their actions. "Most parents try their very best to raise their children well, and with love, and to set them up for success in their lives." she replied.

Etienne's question wasn't a surprise, she should have been expecting it, but it made her tense up a slight bit initially anyway. "I had children...once.." She replied. "though that wasn't for a lack of trying. I often wonder if their conception hadn't been a fluke." It was easy to tell that her troubles conceiving were a bit of a sore spot. "I had them when I was still quite young, twins, a little boy, and girl." She smiled at the memories of her children, and while they were among her most treasured memories there was still some pain buried within. "They were in both the best and worst scenarios for growing up. The king was their father, but he couldn't claim them openly. They couldn't inherit any of what should have been their birthright. Their mother was a slave, and while she only answered to the king, she was still technically a slave, and couldn't be married to the father of her children. They still didn't lack for love growing up. While their father couldn't be as close to them as he would have liked, they were still taken care of, and educated. They got to stay with me in the palace while they grew up, and got to play with their younger half siblings when they came around. Of course, they wanted to go out into the world and make more of themselves, to throw off the shackles of being born into slavery, being the kings illegitimate children. Of course as much as I hated to see them go, I wanted the same thing for them. I made sure they were officially free, and helped them get what they would need to get themselves started in the world, and then they set off on their own to carve their own place in the world."

Freya continued her story with a warm smile. "They didn't visit often, but then I couldn't blame them. I had chosen to continue to serve the royal line. While they had their issues with that, they supported me as I had them in their endeavors. They had both become successful, their drive to prove themselves to the world had served them well."

Freya's eyes began to fill with tears as she continued, though they never quite reached the point of running. "the purge came, and all three of us were hunted at some point. Garen was eventually caught and killed." She shook her head as the tears did start to fall. "He called out to me. I tried to get to him, I moved as fast as I could, but it wasn't fast enough." She paused for a long moment. "when he realized what they were planning, he tried to warn me away. They waited till I was in their trap and they killed him."

It had been hard enough for her not to be able to save her son, but the fact that he had been bait for a trap for her just made it that much more heart wrenching. "they nearly killed me too, but they underestimated a raging mother. Eva had been laying low, but she found me. She took me to where she had been hiding, and nursed me back to health. We both mourned Garen, and continued our lives. Unfortunately, neither of them inherited the entirety of my lifespan. Eva lived a long and happy life, but she died not quite a hundred years ago. She probably could have lived longer, but she was ready to go."

Freya finished her story with a sigh, again she had relived some painful memories, but talking about them was its own therapy. "She probably would have still been alive today, but she was aging and that fact was hard for her, especially every time she saw me, I think she resented me for it for a long time, at least until she had made her decision that she was ready to go. I stayed with her in the hospital during her last days."

She looked at Etienne, and something in his eyes brought a smile to her muzzle. Loosing those she loved always hurt, always left a void, and while she would always remember those lost and hold them dear, she found others to love, to fill her life, and help her continue to live it. Etienne was quickly becoming one of those, and she appreciated him for it far more than he would probably ever realize. "I would love to have children again." She said after a few moments. "I've tried in the past though, many times after my first, but never succeeded." She shrugged, trying to banish that particular thought away. "what do you say to some magic practice?" She asked in an attempt to change the subject.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Etienne felt terrible. Yet another seemingly innocuous question had brought her to the verge of tears. He seemed to keep forgetting that she’d lived so much of her life before the world was civilized, as he’d use the term… assuming he was seeing the modern world for what it was- that is was, in fact civilized at all. The Purge. What was the Purge? He would ask later. He worried that the question would bring more sorrow and he could not bear the thought that his curiosity was unearthing old wounds. Freya made him so happy and he wanted to return the favor. Instead…

The canine could think of nothing more tragic then the events she described. The murder of her child right before her eyes was one thing, but what really stuck in his mind was the thought of Freya- beautiful, doomed to be forever youthful- watching her second child wither in old age, and die. If Etienne pursued this relationship, would she watch him wither and die as well? He couldn’t do that with her, and yet he could not imagine letting her go. He would have to find another solution. And he would do so. He was Etienne.

He was falling in love with this women, he realized. The pain and loss of her story only served to make her more… real, somehow. She was vulnerable. For all her strength, all her power, she was weak in the same way they were all weak. She needed the things all Feilans needed, whether they knew it or not. Etienne hadn’t known himself until recently when she came into his life and filled an empty part of his soul he didn’t even know he had. He wanted to do the same for her. He wanted to be with her, to replace old sorrow with new joy.

Etienne had been staring at her, unaware that these thoughts were reflected in his expression, but when Freya finally met his eyes, and she smiled, he felt his heart take flight. He pulled her close, enfolded her in an embrace, squeezed her tight, delighting in the closeness of their bodies. He could feel her heart beating against his chest. “I’m sorry,” he said with a small laugh, “I seem to have a knack for asking the worst possible questions at the worst possible times…” He stroked her hair and just held her like this for a while, listening to their breathing, lost in thought. Finally he let her go and scooted back a little, beaming at her, “yes, please, I’d love another magic lesson. Hopefully it won’t take two days this time!” Four would be better. Or eight. Or forever.


The canine listened intently to what she was telling him, but his thoughts kept drifting elsewhere, to another question. Should he ask it? His questions had that unfortunate tendency to hurt, yet he was glad he’d asked them. There were some things he just had to know. “Freya,” he began slowly, twirling a finger in the water a few times, “hypothetically speaking… if there was a way for you to conceive children, again, and I’m pretty sure that there is… would you do it? -Knowing that they might not inherit your lifespan and… all that this entails?”
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Freya's response, when Etienne apologized for his questions, was soft but held no small amount of affection. "it's okay, these things would have come up eventually." She rested her head on his shoulder as he held her, and simply enjoyed the comfort within his embrace.

Eventually, he scooted back a bit, and answered her question about magic lessons, and she grinned in response. She chuckled when he mentioned hoping it hadn't taken the amount of time the last lesson had. "Well, water can be tricky." She started. "you can't manhandle it into shape quite the same as you can the other elements. It takes a soft touch, you have to coax it." As she spoke, she stuck a finger into the water next to her, and spun it in a circle, using her power as she did. She gave the water small nudges here and there, and held it lightly within her power as she pulled her finger up and a small column of water followed it. "Of course water may be your element, and you may pick this up as easily as turning on a laser thermometer." She said with a chuckle.

Etienne's return to their previous topic of discussion gave her pause, and the column of water she had coaxed up fell back into the water as a whole with a small splash. "Of course I would have children again. I loved my children, I still do, and even if I outlived them, they enriched my life and I did everything I could to make theirs happy." Her expression turned grim. "I will not go to a doctor though." She said in tones that signaled it was something that had come up in the past in one way or another, and she was having no part of it. "I refuse to be poked and prodded by someone who in all honestly in all likelihood knows next to nothing of my physiology beyond the basics, or worse might want to turn me into some guinea pig or experiment if they find out about my age, resistance to diseases, how fast I heal." She shook her head. "No, medical science has come a long way, but I am a person, not an experiment!" She stopped herself as she realized she was ranting, and her scales darkened in a blush. "Sorry." She said quietly. "Modern medicine and I don't really get along."

She sighed, bringing herself back on topic. "Yes, if I were to somehow conceive, I would happily birth them, and raise them, and give them support through their lives." She said with a smile.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Etienne grinned at her initial response, but his hopes were quickly dashed. What she went on to say was anathema to him. It went against everything he believed in, and he couldn’t help but take it personally. Freya’s attempt at returning to topic was ineffective. Etienne wasn’t going to let this go. He was angry, he felt slighted. “Medical science is what I do,” he stated with poorly concealed challenge and injury, “-one of the things I do.” He waved off in the general direction of civilization, “modern medicine saves countless lives every day! Thousands of people submit themselves to clinical trials with the hope of improving their lives, knowing the risks, with the understanding that they help to make risky treatments safe for all Feilans. Did you think Osborne’s case is standard practice? He is part of an experiment- my experiment! Is he suddenly not a person? Am I a monster for doing the things I do, for risking his life and others’ for the benefit of countless billions?”

“Experiments are how we make the world a better place for all Feilan kind. Magic had its chance to affect that kind of change and it failed. Being part of an experiment does not take your Feilanity away and it does not turn you into a guinea pig- a mere lab animal to be used and discarded. There is no nobler thing than submitting yourself to the scientific process. It is a selfless gesture.”

He paused, and huffed, and sat up in the surf hugging his knees to his chest. “There are people who would take advantage of you, yes, I know many of them, but I know how such things are usually done. I can protect you from those people. But how can we ever- uhh, that is to say, i-if you and I…” he stammered to a halt, ran a hand through his hair, thought carefully. His hypothetical question and the argument it spawned were in danger of losing their hypothetical nature. He decided to approach the issue from another direction, “You are a master of your craft, right? In a thousand years you haven’t solved this problem with magic. What are the chances that someone more skilled in magic than yourself is out there, one who can help you? What other option is there, then, beside the one you’ve so vehemently shot down? You can try magic; it has failed you already. You can try medicine; but you refuse to even consider it. Or you can surrender control to blind, dumb luck. If you end up with someone for whom those dice do not roll favorably, what do you do? Wait for him to die and try again with someone else?” That wasn’t fair and he immediately regretted saying it, but he was desperate in a sense. He’d seen a chance to help her in a very meaningful way, only to have it snatched away and- as he saw such things- thrown in his face.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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When she felt Etienne's reaction, Freya instantly regretted what she had said, she hadn't taken the time to think through her thoughts before she thoughtlessly blurted them out. She started to clarify what she had meant, but it was too late.

Her ears laid down, as she accepted the verbal and emotional backlash of what she had said. Etienne made a valid point, but past experiences were hard to let go of sometimes.

Etienne's slip in mid tirade did cause her to perk up momentarily, though she couldn't be sure what he had been about to say, not without resorting to snooping. Since she couldn't be sure what he was about to say, she could only make an educated guess, but if her guess was right, had he been serious or had it just been something said in the moment. Her thoughts traveled down a multitude of possible paths while he was composing himself. If he was serious, was it something she was willing to try. What would happen if even modern medicine could produce no results. Could she handle the disappointment that would bring. Did she dare hope. All of these things ran through her head before Etienne began speaking again.

"I've never been the strongest healer" She muttered in response to Etienne's question about her being a master of her craft. She honestly couldn't say for sure if there was a healer in this day and age that could do anything. Etienne's last statement stung, a lot, but she figured that in a way she deserved it. She fought back tears for a moment before she scooted herself close to him again, and put her arms around him. "I'm sorry." She said softly "I spoke without thinking my words through, and let them be tainted by old wounds." She continued before kissing him softly on the side of the muzzle. "If you decide you want pursue this. That you want to have children with me and are serious about it, then I trust you and will let you try modern medicine. I would prefer to keep it to a minimum though if that's possible. Only doctors that you trust, private facilities if possible." She gave him another soft kiss. "Does that sound like a fair compromise?" She asked "Remember, I've lived most of my life without modern medicine, and without any real need of it. I've had some bad experiences with it in the past, but I'm sorry that I let them color my judgement and blind me to how important it is to you." She gave him one more kiss, and looked into his eyes, hoping to see the affection return, hoping she hadn't just royally screwed everything up before it truly got off the ground.

"Can you forgive me?" She asked tentatively, hoping very much that she would receive the forgiveness she now asked for.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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He stiffened as she put her arms around him. He held himself rigid and unmoving for a few moments before relenting, relaxing, leaning into her. “No, I’m sorry,” he began to murmur apologetically. He regretted firing off like he had. But Freya’s comments about pursuing the relationship, about the two of them having children, derailed his train of thought. The rest of her words went in one ear, collided with chaos, and bounced out the other, unheard for the time being.

She’d asked him whether he wanted to have children with her. And she’d as much as said that she wanted to pursue the relationship, and that she herself did want to have children with him. Was that correct? The words replayed in his head again and again. He had to be absolutely sure that what he’d heard- and how he’d interpreted it- was correct. He had to be absolutely sure that his feelings were not skewing his interpretation. But it was difficult. Worries and doubts reared their ugly heads. Etienne had never believed in ‘love at first sight,’ and he had scoffed at those of his ‘foolish’ peers who had rushed to use the ‘L’ word after mere months of getting to know someone. Etienne liked things to move predictably and slowly in his life. As much as he cherished unexpected breakthroughs in the lab- as much as he championed change and progress following Osborne’s lead- he expected the unrelated and here-to-for comfortably irrelevant aspects of his personal life to stay in line, for all things surrounding him to keep to nice neat columns and rows as numbers in a spreadsheet. He’d known Freya for, what, two or three weeks? And yet, even from the beginning… and now…

When she looked into his eyes he looked back with an expression uncannily like a feral deer caught in headlights. He looked awash out at sea and out of control. He sounded this way too. “I don’t want to have children with you,” he blurted, but he was not saying what he seemed to be. The phrase she’d used had an oddly clinical ring to it, lacking in the feelings the act engendered. He heard someone say the words, “I love you, Freya,” and after a moment he realized it was he who was speaking. As much as his head wanted for words, his mouth- and his heart- had charged headlong ahead into the oblivion of an unpredictable future. “I love you, Freya,” he said again, heart pounding, face flushing dark, dark, as panic set in upstairs, “I don’t just want to have children with you, I want it- the love I feel- the love you feel?- to mean something,” he poured so much hope and fear into that short question even as his tongue raced ahead. His hands demarcated an abstract solid object in the air, “i-it already means something- more than I can possibly describe with words- but I want to make it physical and real for the whole world to see.”

He’d turned slowly towards her as he rambled. Now he grabbed her shoulders, gave them a squeeze, “You keep asking me what I want? I… wasn’t sure until now… but I think I can finally answer that question. I want to be with you forever. You give my life meaning. You make it worth living in a way it wasn’t before. I want us to have children, a family, a home somewhere.” The argument was almost totally forgotten at this point. It felt infinitesimally irrelevant against the much bigger picture. Forgiveness? Forgiveness!? She’d asked if he could forgive her for a minor slip of the tongue. He loved this women. In such a short time she’d become a part of him and a part of his world and intrinsically linked to his happiness and sorrow. He couldn’t bring himself to tell her that he forgave her, because he would feel so stupid saying it. Of course he forgave her. He was more worried at this point that the haphazard profession of his feelings would frighten her away and rip out that new part of his soul. He peered into those silver pools of her eyes, searching, daring to hope but dreading despair. “Does… does that sound like a fair compromise?… To you?”
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Freya felt some relief when Etienne finally relaxed in her embrace. The look he gave her when he did meet her eyes sapped every bit of that relief away though, and Etienne's initial reply hit her like a physical blow. She let go of him, and her arms fell to her sides. While she was still trying to process what he had just said, his next statement flipped her perceptions on their head, and had her confused. She wasn't sure if she should feel happy or devastated.

Etienne continued talking, and his thoughts became more clear. As Etienne articulated his thoughts, she couldn't help but open herself up to get an idea of what he was feeling. His feelings hit her nearly like a wave, there was so much turmoil, but the underlying love was strong, and Freya was once again fighting back tears, though this time for a much different reason. Time was so much of a different monster for her than the average fur, she didn't put time limits on things, least of all love. She had always used love to balance out the pain of loss in her life, so when it struck she was not one to deny it, and so as Etienne spoke, the accepted the love she felt for him, and reveled in the fact that it was reciprocated.

He turned to face her, and with his next statement, the tears did fall, but they were tears filled with joy. The fires of passion and love were burning bright within them both, and she could think of nothing that sounded better to her than being with Etienne, and starting a family with the hairless canine. To have a full family unburdened by politics, and the possibility of scandal hanging over their heads would truly be a new experience for her. Then he turned her own question back on her, and she couldn't help but laugh. Her laughter was bright, and filled with happiness "It sounds like a wonderful compromise to me!" She replied before pulling him into a kiss. "I love you too Etienne." She told him when their lips parted.

She found herself full of giddy energy. "We need to do something, we need to celebrate..." She said as she looked around, wondering to herself just what she did actually want to do at this point. There were still magic lessons, but they didn't seem like quite as urgent of a thing to get done now that the couple had decided on the direction their relationship was going to take.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Etienne could feel Freya’s perceptions peering into his thoughts- the time he’d spent with her had opened his mind to perceptions previously dismissed as intuition, false impressions, the effects of fatigue, or mere fortuitous guesses- and he didn’t mind it one bit. He would broadcast his love for her to the whole world if he could, it meant so much to him, it was so all-consuming. He tried to read her thoughts as well, but he lacked the discipline to do so. And in the end it proved unnecessary; he could see her thoughts plainly enough on her face, cascading down her cheeks as tears of joy. When she told him she loved him she dispelled his fear and doubts and replaced them with elation overflowing.

Her giddiness was contagious. He wasn’t interested in magic lessons right now either: what was the rush? Her life was boundless and, hopefully, with luck and effort and other things, his life would be also. They had plenty of time for that later. Celebration was the pressing matter. He too felt the need to do something. The canine lurched to his feet, “yes… yes! We must celebrate! We must… we must go dancing! And dine at the finest restaurant possible!” He strode eagerly here and there as he spoke, looking for his shorts. Clothes were on the mind in other ways; Etienne’s definition of ‘going dancing’ did not align with other modern furs’. His eyes defocused as his attention turned to abstract matters, “a gown… we’ll need to find you a ball gown. And I’ll need a tuxedo. Another opportunity to torment room service!” He did not doubt the availability of white tie apparel stores and the stratospheric venues for ballroom dancing in the vicinity. The resort really was quite stratospheric in its own right and played host not only to vacationing men and women of import, but official conventions and matters of state and diplomacy as well. And if not nearby the resort, the city of Hoshiruki, home to countless beaches, resorts, and convention centers, was only a short drive along the coast.

Etienne had automatically grasped at the kinds of celebration a childhood in nobility had taught him. Only as he hopped around on one foot, one leg through his swim shorts and the other refusing to cooperate, did he realize she might have different notions of what a proper form of celebration would be. He hopped in place around to face her and finally wrestled his swim shorts into submission. “Unless you had something else in mind,” he offered, eager to please and insatiably curious. Freya’s notion of a good time could be even more antiquated then his own. Just what did people do for fun four or six or eight hundred years ago? Again he felt brief concern that he was rushing into this relationship. There was so much he didn’t know about Freya. But the other side of the coin- that there was so much to explore in her personality and past, so much to discover- was far more compelling. “We could visit archaeologic sites- ancient ruins- they certainly abound here and up in the mountains! Or we could see what the nightlife is like in the cities,” this was a suggestion he did not like much himself- he wasn’t a fan of so much noise and commotion as he imagined a nightclub to host. Still, this was not only about himself.

In fact there was almost no limit to what they could do. The canine’s tufted, furless tail whipped back and forth, such was his excitement that he forgot entirely to suppress that uncouth display. “What shall we do?” it was less a direct question than an acknowledgement of the many, many possibilities, “either way we’ll haver to get back to civilization.” He flashed a nervous grin in anticipation of another flight and the view of his feet dangling high above the jungle.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Freya had to admit that dinner and dancing sounded pretty good to her. She chuckled as Etienne wrestled with his shorts. "Oh yes, a gown..." She replied thoughtfully as she contemplated giving him a hand with said shorts, but that would probably lead to them coming back off. "I think I'd rather pick out my own gown." She eventually finished. "Don't worry though, I won't subject you to dress shopping." She said with an impish grin as she moved over to where she had piled her clothes, and began putting them back on.

She shook her head when Etienne asked if she had something else in mind, then mentioned archeological sites, or clubs. "well, I think a good old fashioned tavern brawl would probably end up with somebody trying to put us in jail." She replied jokingly. "archeology sites would be too much like work, and a dance club just doesn't quite fit the mood." She continued. "No, I think dinner and dancing will do nicely. Besides, we haven't done anything that would qualify as an actual date yet." She said in coy tones. She paused for a moment. "giving it up, before the first date, that's got to be some sort of record." She said with an amused laugh as she straightened out her skirt in mock propriety "If my parents were around I'm sure they'd have all sorts of things to say about that" She continued while still laughing.

Etienne's mention of getting back to civilization, and the look on his face when he mentioned it gave her a thought. "I suppose we should.....you asked about magical transportation." She said with a wide grin as she started gathering large amounts of power. The amount of energy that Freya was working with at this point was enough that Etienne probably would have felt it from the road they had left before. After a few moments there was a tearing sound that was very similar to that of a stick being run through a black widow's web. The sound was quickly followed by a brief flash, and an oval big enough for Freya to walk through appeared suspended a couple inches from the ground in front of Etienne. The oval was filled with an image of their room in the resort, though it shimmered and warped as if it were underwater. Small forks of light that resembled lightning frozen in time came off of the image at random intervals, and a faint ozone smell wafted off of it. "Travel by portal was one way to do it." She said with a wide grin as she took hold of Etienne's hand and pulled him toward the image of their suite. As they went, the rest of what they had brought with them lifted up off of the sand and floated toward them.

Stepping through the portal was a sensation akin to jumping into a cold lake in the summer. There was a small amount of resistance as they stepped through, and ended up near the couch. The various things they took with them to the beach followed shortly behind. She kept Etienne close after they were through, mostly for his own safety as the portal snapped shut behind their beach gear, leaving only a lingering ozone smell as evidence that it ever existed. "I'm going to get my wallet, and go find a nice gown. I'm assuming you're going to have some fun with room service in the mean time?" She said as she headed for her bedroom to pick up said wallet. After a few moments of searching she came back into the common room, and gave Etienne a kiss. "I shouldn't be too long, provided I can find something close to what I have in mind."
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Etienne’s smile twisted askance for a moment. His parents were around, and like Freya he was sure they’d have a lot to say about what he had done and what he was doing. The old ways were mostly dead and gone, but they still believed in a certain propriety around courting a suitable women and developing a relationship in carefully predefined steps. Also, while nobody in his family could be called a racist by any stretch of the term, he was sure they would be hesitant on those grounds. But he had no intention of telling them now. They would learn eventually, but he would not allow the spectre of that conversation to put a damper on his and Freya’s excitement.

He snapped back to the present at Freya’s mention of teleportation, took a few uncertain steps towards her before the sensation of all that magical power compelled him to stop. If he’d felt tingling along his back when she’d moved the candle and lit it, he now felt something like being set on fire- but without actual pain. He felt pins and needles everywhere, at first just an indistinct blanketing of sensation before resolving into something like cascading waves washing over him. He could sense enormous forces flowing around his body and into hers, and then a rising crescendo of sound and light, and then…

The canine took an unconscious step back from the floating object. He knew this must be some kind of gateway, and while he was sure Freya wouldn’t put him in danger, a part of him was automatically running the numbers for the energy such a doorway would require from a purely scientific standpoint. It frightened him. It would seem to require a singularity, a type of object he found truly terrifying. But, he reminded himself, this was magic, not science. Freya’s touch dispelled his terror if not his trepidation and he allowed her to lead him into the aperture (event horizon, part of him screamed).

Nothing bad happened. He half expected the sensation of cold water washing over him to turn exponentially to one of crushing weight followed almost immediately by the death of being compacted to an infinitely dense point, but here too his old sensibilities proved wrong. His expression of tense trepidation turned to wonder. Magic, he thought again, not science.

The journey through the threshold had fired him up just as their flight to the cove had. He clung to Freya as she held him close, his excitement physically obvious. He felt a tremendous urge to claw all her clothes off. But he restrained himself. Going on this first date- as Freya had put it- was more important to him. Sex with Freya was fun, but he was after a deeper connection than that. He released her, watched her stride into her bedroom. “Perhaps,” he replied when she asked about room service. Tormenting room service was more fun when she was around. It made her laugh. He loved making her laugh.

He returned her kiss and then watched longingly as she left the suite, before turning to the phone. He was too excited to bother room service unnecessarily; he wanted to hurry this process along. He inquired as to where he could get a tuxedo tailored on the spot and was told of several places to try. The resort itself could provide this service, but not expedite it sufficiently for his purpose. The canine thanked them and hung up the phone, retrieved his wallet. Freya’s mention of her wallet had reminded him that Osborne knew perfectly well the value of money, and his wasn’t Etienne’s to spend however he chose. He resolved to pay down the cost of the digital thermometer at the end of their stay as well, but for now he changed into his casual clothes and left the suite to find a tailor.


An hour and a half later found him back at the suite and looking very sharp indeed. He did not have the vast wealth of Osborne, but he was not poor either. His many unadvertised side-ventures provided him more than enough to live as he saw fit, thus he could afford both the services of an expert tailor and to rush those services.

He wondered when Freya would be back. He’d known some women- his sisters- to spend hours shopping for something as mundane as blue jeans. He imagined finding a gown was more complicated than finding a pair of jeans. He also wondered what the gown would look like- and how long he’d have to wait to take it off her.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

Post by Asyriel »

Freya whistled a cheerful tune to herself as she headed out of their room, and down to the resort lobby where she made a few inquiries of her own before she headed outside. She decided that she would fly, at least until she had found a gown. Outside, she spread her wings, and took to the air. She flew the short distance to the recommended shop, enjoying the warm weather and clear skies as she went.

She landed outside an upscale retailer that specialized in formal wear. She looked around as she walked into the store, hoping to catch sight of something close to what she was looking for. The women tending the store looked at her and sneered. It was one of those 'we know just by looking at you that you don't belong here, but we'll pretend to help you so we can look down our noses at you' looks. Freya's current state of dress didn't do anything to contradict those ideas either. "Ladies." Freya said with a friendly smile as they approached. "I need an evening gown that can accommodate wings." She continued as if that wasn't obvious. The hardest part was going to be finding something that was her size, or close enough that very little tailoring would have to be done. While she had a well toned, and fit body it didn't change that fact that she was still larger than the average female.

"Well now, I'm not sure we have much in your size." One of the women replied as she looked Freya up and down. She was probably a good foot shorter than the dragoness, but still managed to look down her nose at Freya. "Chances are we'll have to make alterations...."
"Not a problem" Freya cut in before the girl could finish. "Just show me what you have please." She said with a little impatience as she remembered why she hated shopping at places like this.

The girl turned on her heel, and headed off with a haughty air, expecting Freya to follow as she led her toward what they had that met Freya's criteria. It wasn't much longer before Freya had a dress picked out, and they headed into the fitting room. This time it was Freya's turn to sneer as she stripped out of her clothes to reveal a body the two other women dreamt of having. She knew it was petty, but she thoroughly enjoyed the envy in their eyes. She tried the gown on, and it was marked for alterations, and then removed. "it'll take about an hour for alterations." One of the women told her
"fine with me, I'm sure I can find something to do in the mean time." She replied before she followed them to the counter.

The total was rung up, and Freya dropped a card onto the counter. The card was swiped, and came back declined. Freya frowned, she was confused, and a little embarrassed at the same time. She had never had one of her debit cards declined before. She pulled out another card for a larger account, and was met with the same result. Now she was more angry than anything. Something was wrong, and the two women running the store were getting too much satisfaction from telling her that her cards were declined. "fine." She said shortly as she pulled a stack of traveler's checks from her wallet, and signed enough to cover the dress and alterations. The women took the checks grudgingly, and Freya turned and practically stormed from the shop.

She stalked down the streets in a foul mood, she had planned to do some more shopping, but the situation with her accounts had put a huge damper on that. Instead she walked, and worked to cool herself down, she didn't want this to ruin her evening out with Etienne. It could be dealt with tomorrow, she still had traveler's checks, and if worse came to worse, she could dip into her cash reserves.

She returned to the shop after a little more than an hour. She had picked up a pair of shoes to match the dress while she waited. She smiled sweetly as the women brought out her dress, and packed it into a garment bag so she could take it with her. "thank you." She said before turning and walking out. She found a place to use a phone and called for a resort shuttle to pick her up.

She arrived back at the suite she was sharing with Etienne just short of an hour after he did. It hadn't taken her long to pick a dress since her size and wings had narrowed down the selection quite a bit, that and she had gone into the endeavor with a design in mind.

"Lookin good." She commented as she entered the suite, and saw Etienne. The compliment was accompanied by a soft slap on the canine's rear. "I remember now why I hate shopping at upscale clothing boutiques" She commented as she headed for her room, shedding clothing as she went. "Now I just have to get changed, maybe do a little primping" She continued with a small chuckle as she turned to look back at Etienne through the open doorway, contemplating for a moment before she spoke again. "I think you're going to just have to wait to see the finished product." She said with a wide grin before she shut the door.

Etienne's wait was surprisingly short, all things considered. Of course, when you could produce as many extra hands as you needed, getting ready tended to take much less time.

Freya emerged from her room wearing a black backless dress that was ankle length. It hugged close against her hips and thighs before flaring out enough that she could easily walk at a brisk pace if needed. The back of the dress came up underneath her tail with a strap that went over the top of her tail at the base of it. The top of the dress had a low enough neckline that it showed off a decent amount of cleavage. The fabric had a few folds at the bottom of the neckline to make it look as if the fabric was bunched up there, and the top of the dress tied off behind her neck. She wore a nice pair of shoes to match, but what would have been the most surprising would have been the jewelry, though Etienne probably would have felt when she retrieved it. She hadn't come in from shopping with any, but she now wore ornate gold wire bands around each of her horns, a cuff at the end of her tail, and a large emerald in a gold setting attached to a black velvet choker around her neck. Her hair was braided into a single thick braid that hung down her back.

"so?..." She asked as she stepped into the common room, and spun a slow circle so Etienne could get a good look. "what do you think? And when do we eat?" She asked with a chuckle.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Etienne thought to retaliate against the slap with a pinch in kind, just a little too slowly, for the behind in question had already swayed out of reach. He wasn’t used to operating this way- all those hours of stoic standing and (ig)noble brooding hadn’t endowed him with the quick reflexes of a lecher. Even if he did pick up on those skills, somehow he knew Freya would always be one step ahead. He watched intently as she shed clothing, met her eyes with that shadowed, moody hunger as she stood in the doorway, and was both disappointed and thrilled when she decided to close it.

The canine carefully filed away her comment about shopping at upscale boutiques. He would ask about it another time- he was reluctant to ask yet another question which might have an unpleasant answer.

She emerged from the room much sooner than he expected, did a slow twirl, asked what he though. “You look beautiful,” Etienne managed to pack so much into such a short answer, like his eyes had never fallen on anything more beautiful. He put his hands on her shoulders and just took her in for a moment, before stepping aside and holding out an elbow for her to take like the proper nineteenth century couple. “We eat in an hour,” he answered as they strolled down the hall connecting their suite to the rest of the resort. He had to fight to keep the stroll from turning into a brisk walk- he wasn’t one for strolling. “At La Baie,” he continued, “a restaurant in Hoshiruki with three Michelin stars. The Chef is Domus-trained, but he incorporates Yamahanese ingredients and cooking styles in his Domusian dishes.”

“I always feel sort of silly saying anything is a three-star restaurant,” he commented after a pause, “most people have been indoctrinated by this completely false notion that there are such things as five star restaurants, so a three-star restaurant sounds less impressive to them. There aren’t. It goes from one to three, and that is it. I’m not sure where this whole ‘five-star’ idea came from.” He walked on in silence for another moment, “though I’m sure other guides were quick to roll out more stars than the Michelin guide. It’s all foolishness. Michelin stars are the most prestigious in the industry by far. It is just unfortunate that people have been mislead by countless movies and TV shows like that.”

A black stretch limousine waited for them out front of the resort in a place of prominence he’d arranged beforehand. He wanted Freya to be seen in her dress- he cared less about showing himself off. The smartly dressed chauffeur bowed to them, opened her door for her and than his for him, and soon they were off. A few dozen resort-goers watched the limo depart, wondering who the two passengers were. Etienne instructed the man to drive to the restaurant first, instead of the ballroom venue. Freya was hungry! He was hungry too, for that matter. After dinner they would go dancing if they felt like it, or perhaps do something else. His mind swam with imaginings of what that something else might be. At a thought, he pulled out his phone and called the restaurant. It should have come as no surprise that he spoke fluent Domusian- he was Domusian, after all- and in words almost too rapid to parse out he arranged to have their reservation moved to an earlier hour. He made the request quite peremptory, in fact, lest the reservationist decide that he was someone who would take ‘no’ for an answer.

“We eat in an hour,” he said again, just a little triumphantly, as he put away the phone, “well, forty five minutes anyhow. We may get there a little early.” The city was only a short ride away by highway, but a good half of the time would go into navigating the bustling city streets to their destination.

“Why do you hate shopping at upscale clothing stores?” he asked as the glowing, glittering city skyline finally loomed up over the horizon. He didn’t have to look out the window to see it- he could see the reflection in her eyes. “I have trouble justifying the cost of high end, designer clothes, myself. Except for very special occasions, it seems a quick way to waste money.”
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Freya beamed at Etienne's compliment; it was simple yet so very heartfelt. She gave him a soft kiss on the end of his muzzle as he offered his arm, then took it as if it were the most natural thing to do.

As they walked, she listened to Etienne talk about the restaurant they were going to, and the chef in charge of the kitchen. "That sounds like an interesting twist on Domusian cuisine." She replied with a quirked smile as if she were imagining how the dishes would taste. "Oh I would definitely blame the media." She replied after he had explained about Michelin starts. "That, and jealousy....you know..come up with your own star system that has more to make yourself seem better. A lot of furs are either uninformed or just think more equals better regardless. "

She smiled and looked around as the pair came outside, noting the looks they were receiving. She smiled, and pulled herself in nice and close to Etienne, close enough that their hips rubbed together as they walked. She didn't mind being on display, but she was going to make at least a little bit of a show of it if that was the case.

Once they were in the limousine, she rummaged through the bar until she found a couple of sodas while Etienne spoke on the phone. She listened carefully, and while she was fluent in Domusian, he spoke fast enough that she didn't catch everything that was said. She offered one of the sodas to Etienne as she replied. "An hour sounds good. I hope changing out reservation wasn't too much trouble."

She had settled in close to Etienne, and the temptation to have some fun while they enjoyed the ride was hard to resist so she kept her eyes on the windows for a while. She watched the lit streets, tall skyscrapers, bright neon and LED lighting. She got a bit of a far off look on her face as she remembered what the city had looked like so many ages ago, or even more recent past.

Etienne's question brought her back to the present, and she chuckled a little before answering him. "Well the cost is one part of it." She replied with a grin. "And I tend to be a little hard on clothes...you can imagine how expensive that would be. It's not like the designer clothes are any better or more comfortable than a good old pair of jeans and a t-shirt." She paused for a moment. "besides that, it's the attitude that you get from the employees a lot of the time...I don't know if it's part of the orientation video or what, but a lot of times they seem to have an attitude like nobody is good enough to shop there, especially if you're nor reeking of money when you walk in. It just gets very tiresome." She shook her head. "And to top all of that off, today for some reason my debit cards were declined. I know there is more than enough money in any of my accounts. Had to use traveler's checks." She said the last in slightly petulant tones before taking a deep breath. "But let's not dwell on that, this is a night for celebration and fun, let's enjoy it." She said with a wide smile before giving him a deep kiss. She again had to resist the urge to climb into Etienne's lap. Luckily it wasn't much longer before they arrived.

When they arrived, Freya waited for her door to be opened and stepped out of the limo. She walked over to Etienne, again taking his arm, and walking close enough to him to make it a bit of a display. She smiled as they went. When they were seated, she grinned impishly for a moment before she spoke. "Sooo..." She started. "when do I get to meet your family?" She asked in teasing tones that made it obvious it wasn't something she was actually pushing for, though she knew it would probably happen eventually.
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