(121-07-16) Valerio Vixenbought
Valerio Vixenbought
Summary: A lady of adventurous temperament sets her mind to picking up a certain actor she's been gazing at all night, little suspecting his true identity.
Date: 16/07/121 (the early hours of the morning)
Related: Showtime at the Whimsy.

A street in Oldtown

The festivities at the Garden Isle were in every way sumptuous; more sumptuous, indeed, perchance, than satisfying, especially for a perverse and freehearted youth. So it is that, with the baleful summons of his step-grandmother somehow less than entirely effaced from his mind, and after eighteen more or less identically replicated conversations with admiring, sweet-lipped, trill-stepped Reachmaidens, Amadys Baratheon, lately, and often, known as Valerio Vixenbane, finds himself doubling back, as if a sleepwalker, in the direction of the Theatre of Whimsical Dreams, whence sprang his original triumph…where saucier game might still lurk.

Yet he has not ventured altogether far when the game becomes the gamekeeper, and he is all but knocked aside by the overenthusiastic filly attached to a light carriage, bearing the arms of yet another Reach house, Hastwyck. He plushes dust from his face, wipes at his cheek with a brush of his Lysene get-up that smudges the rouge altogether, and sourly awaits a chance to proceed to somewhere more relaxedly poxy.

A scant couple of yards along the street — so near, in fact, that the passenger must have directed her driver to halt in the very instant she saw Amadys Baratheon's boldly made-up face — the filly halts, and the carriage with it.

By the light of the waxing moon, and the cheerier illumination scattered by the windows of two or three occupied houses, a face appears in the carriage's window: female, framed by a mass of dark red curls, and smiling rather saucily. No more may be discerned. "Valerio Vixenbane!" she calls, with laughter in her rich, low voice. "Won't you take a glass of wine with me, in honour of your victory tonight…?"

The Pirate King has an experienced enough eye, and accordingly the mummer's face presents an instructive picture - initially, the instinctive mockery of a handsome youth for a woman, look she ever so practiced, of about twice his years; then stamped, pending further consideration of what that entails exactly, with a cruel but undeniable start of curiosity. Nonetheless, Amadys's response surrenders few pleasantries.

"Weren't you paying attention, …m'lady? We gained no victory, our crew, but yielded ourselves recreant to King Viserys. Then I married Claribel…we're told. Bit of a notch down for even a momentary king, y'might think. She's but a healthy-looking trull, and the Laurel's chattel besides. Anyway, you may never have seen a more defeated lookin' monarch, but if you're still willing to oblige him with a…libation…even kings are crass if they e'er say nay to…fair…damosels." And he smirks rather too broadly to be gallantly, though the movement sets off astonishingly unrotted teeth, a full mouth, and ever more mischievously staring dark blue eyes.

His interlocutor leans a companionable arm upon the edge of her carriage's open window; several inches of very fine golden silk spill over it. "Oh, I spoke only of your personal victory," she answers at once, deliberately widening her eyes at him; "on stage, you ruled the waves, but surely tonight you're the King of all Oldtown. I hadn't thought to see you alone, unattended by your courtiers — won't you," and she leans back again as one of the two burly men who have been clinging to a high perch upon the back of the carriage steps down, to open the door, "step inside, and we'll see about that wine?"

To make room for him, her maid is unceremoniously ejected upon the other side of the carriage, and accommodated up on the box next to the driver; and, within, he's surrounded by a spicy fragrance which, combined with the idiosyncratic style of the lady's garb, suggests he has fallen in with a Dornishwoman. No doubt that would account for the easy, flirtatious smile with which she indicates that he might just possibly like to sit next to her.

And yet…and yet…in another and quite unsatisfactory existence, Amadys Baratheon squired in the Marches; got to know the odd Dornishwoman, nothing special, fond of bales of silk and biting…and is cognizant that his present, ample, spirited guide into some scented netherworld…is of no such ilk. But he takes it all as he finds it with a shrug. "My buccaneers are my shadows under the midday son, alas, my lady. To let them trail me by midnight also would be altogether dulling to any of the senses…of interest. Ah, ahm, red, Arbor, quite."

His appreciation to the biddable handmaiden is not altogether drowned out even by his most impressive attempt at casualness, and, recognising the intensifying ramifications of the time and place with a jovially resigned chuckle, he swigs from the generous vessel and then offers it back to the lady. "Do you dare, fair raider of wandering souls, taste the Pirate King's loving cup?" His next smirk is definitely closer to vermillion, but not the less encouraging for it.

The lady — if that isn't too kind a term — favours Amadys with a mischievous little smile, as she curls both hands around the goblet he has returned to her. And, with an ease of manner which suggests that picking up a Pirate King in the street is no more peculiar a diversion for her than smelling a bouquet of roses, she turns the goblet and drinks with her lips placed just where, a moment ago, he placed his. One slow, savouring mouthful — and then another — and her eyes (are they grey? are they green?) locked upon his.

And the Vixenbane's eyes expand shade by shade, with dual realisations…that his new companion puts the good stuff away as fast or faster than he does…and that she bears, after all, certain features that are crushingly…dynastically…appealingly familiar. Perhaps not just a merchant's whore done good and fending off the mantle of dullness, after all, then.

Not that is matters…so he tells himself, with a deeper gulp, a bold stab at insouciance, that great goblet clutched in one hand, as the other, the left, seeks hers, her forearm, her shoulder, and a charmingly ill-kempt glint of Flor…of foxy gauze at its underside. And where that long, ambitious hand begins, vinous lips and a jaded tongue in search of new sensations, less pleasant than memorable, are sure sharply to follow.

For the sake of the thing, Amadys flickers back up again and asks lazily, "Which gang of bores shrouded you all about tonight, o…roseate damosel? The slothful rooftoppers, or the meddling golddiggers? Or did you perch in altogether some other nest, where my poor wearied eyes were doomed not to track you…?"

The carriage is in motion once more toward a destination unknown, the filly anxious in her obedience to the crack of a whip; and the lady — yes, certainly, a lady after all — leans in to Amadys's bold embrace, her pleasantly rounded, silk-swathed body edging closer to him upon the seat as it rises and falls with the vehicle's motion. Her hand joins his in a similar concern that what's left in their cup should spill nowhere but down their throats; her soft long fingers curling about his, she holds him and the cup with a similar tightness, lolling her head back against her shoulder as his attentions bring another laugh to her lips. "Oh, I passed a pleasant evening enough, consoling myself for your absence from the theatre when I sent my maid to enquire at the stage door whether you might, just possibly, be within—? But isn't this more pleasant, my king? To meet quite alone, quite unencumbered… quite unobserved?" Her hand guides the cup once more to her lips, and she drinks it down: her lips form a perfect little 'O' of surprise. "We do appear to have run out. What shall we do?"

An occluded thought seems to fog its way briefly but uncommodiously through the Vixenbane's beautifully shaped and proportioned head. "Carriage was Hastwyck…dull stripes…dull lot…duty…curious…" His expression looks like it can conceive of a query, but not quite summon one, and the subject soon fades when confronted with the lady's far more urgent question. "The gods gave us smallfolk to fill our cups," the possibly one-time scientifical acolyte now intones with surprising piety, "but when such creatures even fail us, we must all play our own part. Are there not sweeter vintages than even the Arbor can bid that come readily to your thoughts, shrewdest of mai…of damosels? Do they not stand aside, steaming for the gulp of the honoured guest?"

And, with the unorthodox chivalry that has ever distinguished his part in society, Amadys lets his graceful, tautening form crane down the Dornish silks, not up to the full lips…the ones above anyway. No doubt they too shall have their hour, but first the Pirate King appears to have volunteered for an enterprising, altruistic keelhaul.

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