Author Topic: when you pulled me closer; [p]  (Read 1832 times)

Offline grace

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when you pulled me closer; [p]
« on: October 28, 2018, 01:57:10 AM »

grace elisabeth calistoga


TRIGGER WARNING:
this thread will be long-running and very well thought out. at this point, it's become less of a hobby thread and more of a story. With this in mind, it might host some sensitive topics including but not limited to:
-gore (minor or heavy)
-abuse (physical, verbal, mental, mentions of sexual)
-substance abuse (alcohol, others tbd)
-infant/pregnancy loss/premature birth
-death

if you have sensitivities to these or anything of similar nature, i urge you not to read on. if anyone has a problem with content that they feel is stepping over our bounds, please PM me. reedy and i will undoubtedly follow site rules and nothing that requires a trigger warning will be described in detail.

thanks and happy reading!


---

Never did she imagine her life would go the way that it had, for Queen Grace had not started out as the strong, compassionate character that she used to rule her kingdom in the genuine interest of her people. She, like everyone, went through it all to get to that final point of bliss. Someday, Grace would pass peacefully, with a well-lived, incredible life under her belt. Amazing children, a loving husband. But, it did not start under halos of light.

---

The morning was rushed. A thick cover of dark clouds hung over the magnificent kingdom of Windhelm. Although grand as it may be, they were facing an immediate threat of invasion, and the likelihood of the Windhelm Keep being taken over increased as they days went by with no word from the Royal family on how they intended to take care of it, as well as the safety of their people.

This is where Lord Edward Calistoga came in. He was the Head Military Advisor of the King, and also served as his best friend. The men had four decades of working together to keep Windhelm safe and happy, and when Edward was presented with the biggest dilemma of his career, it only made their friendship stronger. The invaders have made the two men come together in ties of patriotism and love for their people. It was admirable.

Edward's daughter, Grace, did not deem herself fit for her father's career path. She took after her mother in terms of poise, of elegance, of- grace. This particular morning, she had been woken abruptly by her father. He pushed open the heavy oak door and huffed in the doorway.

"Grace, you need to wake up. Alfred and Henri are expecting us. Something has come up and I fear our situation has become more dire," he rumbled, moving over to throw a lit match into the grand fireplace at the opposite end of her bedroom.

Grace sat up, slightly disoriented. The royals had requested them? They were due at the palace later that day anyways, so what on earth could be so important that they had to call on them before dawn? So, she got up and washed herself, basking in the bare warmth of the fire. The winters were so nasty in Windhelm, and she knew the moment she stepped outside that she would be longing for her warm bed. Continuing with her routine, the young woman wrapped a robe around herself and sat in front of her vanity, beginning to comb out long locks of dark, ever-so-slightly waves. She had of course neglected to wash her hair this morning, as she counted on not dying of hypothermia this winter.

Grace dressed herself in a heavenly burgundy gown equipped with golden embroideries. She had let her dark waves down and adorned her head with a golden circlet that seemed to compliment her dark hair just right. Once dressed, she pulled a thick riding cloak around herself, fastening the clasp at the neck. Meeting her family in the grand foyer, her heart swelled, but then sank. Her brothers stood alongside their father while their mother fretted over their cloaks. Upon seeing Grace enter the room, Lady Calistoga rushed over, cupping her daughter's face in her hands.

"Are you sure you're warm enough?" she breathed, pulling Grace's cloak tighter around her body. Grace nodded vigorously, to Victoire's satisfaction, and with a bit more fretting, the family was on their way to the palace. It wasn't far, but it wasn't the closest in proximity, either. One could easily catch a deadly winter ailment if not dressed properly for the ride there. Upon arrival, Grace was chilled to the bone, as was her younger brother, who shivered uncontrollably atop his horse. The nobles were quickly escorted inside, where they were greeted with long corridors lined with large torches. Providing light and warmth, Grace soaked it all in, slowly removing her heavy cloak.

Once in the throne room, Edward and Victoire Calistoga entered, arms linked. Behind them, their three children followed in order of seniority. The eldest, Petyr, followed his father's footsteps, his shoes echoing the same pride and authority as his father's. Then Grace, whose heels clicked on the marble floors. She wasn't as dramatic as Petyr, though. Lastly, Norman trailed behind his sister. He was only beginning his  studies of what his father did for a living. Lord and Lady Calistoga dipped into deep, respectful bows, and their children followed.

"My Lord, of course you know the children," he rumbled, releasing his wife so he could go look at the map that had been displayed. "I have received reports that an entire port city has been run down. No hostages, and no survivors," he sighed, stroking his beard thoughtfully. The situation was getting worse by the day.

@trick-or-treedy



« Last Edit: January 18, 2019, 06:20:55 AM by GRACE »

Offline BABS

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Re: queen of the angels [p]
« Reply #1 on: October 29, 2018, 09:41:21 PM »

Henri Earl Ashdowne
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Henri hadn't been given a wink of sleep that night. The climax of the threat of invasion had come to its head, and it seemed as though the weight of the battle rested on his shoulders heavily. All the royals had been quite stressed, but it was no secret how personal the eldest prince took these kinds of things. It seemed as though the general public took note of this as well, because he'd been completely bombarded with letters wanting to know what the official plan was. His parents were busy enough with their own duties, and his siblings were no help in responding. William had been as icy to him as always, and Luella kept herself as ignorant to the state of her kingdom as possible. She didn't like conflict.

Just as he'd waxed and sealed off a letter towards one of Riverwood’s aristocrats, he was interrupted by a timid knock at his door. “My Lord, I apologize for the interruption, but you’ve been requested to the map room. Lord and Lady Calistoga will be arriving shortly.” Ah yes, he remembered now. His father had requested an urgent meeting to discuss tactics. “Yes, I will be arriving shortly. Thank you. Say, will Lady Grace be attending today?” The servant stepped farther into the room and nodded. “Yes, sir. As will her brothers, if my memory serves me well.” Henri took in a breath and offered a light smile. “That will be all then. You are dismissed.”

As the servant exited his room, the young prince began to set away his stationary. In the wake of all this chaos, at the very least he would be in the presence of Grace. Her brothers, however, he wasn’t too sure of. Whilst he had nothing against Norman, Petyr was the one that frequently approached him in odd ways. He was a strange man, him. No matter. Henri stood from his desk and ran a hand through his ashy blonde hair. The pressing matters he was forced to attend to made his physical upkeep dwindle slightly, but if he was to see Grace he wanted to be as proper as possible.

When Henri stepped into the corridor, he was immediately met with his sister who must’ve just gotten the same notice. He offered her a comforting smile, and she returned it. “We’ll be alright, Henri. So long as we all stick together, come what may.” The prince chuckled and agreed. The two siblings made their way down the hall and toward the map room anxiously. As they entered in, the two relaxed seeing the nobles hadn’t arrived quite yet.

Queen Selena smiled at her children. She beckoned them to sit down beside their brother, whom had already arrived and looked as cross as usual. “Well finally. You’ve kept us waiting.” Prince William muttered to his siblings under his breath. Henri rolled his eyes in irritation. Despite being as close as brothers could be in their younger years, jealousy over who got the throne had begun to drive a cold wedge between the princes. They used to play together; now they could go days without speaking, and when they did it was typically to argue.

King Alfred could barely acknowledge the presence of his children. Never mind his sons bitter comment. The man was bent of the table, his grey eyes scanning a map and analyzing every detail. They had heard of a port city being taken over, but were unaware of the severity. Selena placed a comforting hand on her husband’s shoulder, but still her eyes were squinted with worry as she read over his shoulder. The future of their kingdom wasn’t at its best. “Blasted invaders,” Mumbled the King. “Should’ve blown them out the water when we had the chance.” His wife sighed in silent agreement before turning to face the servant that entered the room to announce the presence of the arriving nobles.

As Lord and Lady Calistoga filed in with their children in suite, the royals stood in greeting. “Yes, we’ve been made aware. I wasn’t informed of the survivor count though. This is surely a devastating blow. I don’t know what we can do for our next move. The Invaders have completely dried us. That port city was a main harbor for export and import.” King Alfred shook his head solemnly at the news of what had become of his subjects.

Henri listened intently to the conversation before his eyes traveled over towards Grace. He gave a sly kind of half smile in greeting, trying to remain unnoticed as his father spoke. His eyes were grim with the coming news. What in God’s name could they do now?
« Last Edit: October 31, 2018, 10:19:09 PM by henri »
YOU REALLY SHOULDN'T THINK ABOUT GOD
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Offline grace

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Re: queen of the angels [p]
« Reply #2 on: October 29, 2018, 10:06:18 PM »

Grace Elisabeth Calistoga


Upon entering the room, Grace dipped into a deep bow, lowering her head in respect. The royal family had always been so good to her and her family.. how any kind of politician could hold as much compassion as the Ashdownes did was beyond her, but she was thankful for it nonetheless, especially in these trying times of patriotism.

Grace stood upright from her bow and straightened her gown out, listening to her father report on his findings. The situation was truly awful. People were continuing to lose their lives every day, because no one could come to an agreement as to what to do. She began to come up with her own solutions, for what seemed like the hundredth time, before she caught Henri’s eye and completely lost her train of thought. He was utterly captivating, and being under his gaze made her heart flutter. Of course, she would never tell her mother of these feelings- Victoire would never be able to keep them to herself, and then no one would let anyone hear the end of it. It was in agreement that their courtship was best kept a secret right now.

Edward moves to stand next to the King, who was joined by his sons and the younger prince. ”I think we should just brave the hills. The strongest make it out alive. We need the weak weeded out as bait,” Petyr scoffed, before being abruptly interrupted by his brother.


”No, I think we should save the weak first! There’s much to learn from them!” Norman suggested, looking at his father and King Alfred.
William almost giggled a bit, but did not contribute an idea to the discussion. As the Calistoga brothers continued to argue, and Victoire had gone up to visit with Selena, Grace took this opportunity to move over to her prince.

”Good morning, My Lord,” she purred, offering him a smile. Even in these dark times, she tried her best to cheer up her beloved in simple ways, as she had done before. She was tempted to reach out to hold his hand, but she refrained. She didn’t want to risk someone seeing it.

Petyr scurried over. ”My Lord, please pardon my sister, she doesn’t have proper manners. No woman below a man has the nerve to stand next to him,” he chuckled nervously. ”W-what do you think we should do? I mean, did you hear any ideas you liked in particular?”

« Last Edit: October 31, 2018, 11:40:03 PM by GRACE »

Offline BABS

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Re: queen of the angels [p]
« Reply #3 on: October 31, 2018, 10:18:38 PM »

Henri Earl Ashdowne
FACECLAIM

Henri listened passively to the conversing of his father and Edward, but made it a point to edge away as the two groups began to form into one. In all honesty, he was just hoping to be able to stand with Grace and possibly talk with her without interruption.

It was hard keeping their courtship a secret, especially from the ever eager and innocently prying eyes of his mother. It bothered him especially when his family would be visiting with the royalty of neighboring kingdoms, as he was always pushed to talk with the princesses. Most of them were nothing short of lovely, but they didn’t even begin draw his gaze. Not with someone like Grace already in his heart. There wasn’t much to contest.

As Selena finally pulled away to visit with her friend, the young prince finally became unnoticed as he greeted his lover with a warm smile. “Good morning to you, my Lady Grace. How have you been faring?” His smooth talk was interrupted when Petyr chimed in with them abruptly. He gave a nervous chuckle at the others comment.

"Ah well, she’s quite alright. I believe your sister has proven herself as worthy as any man. At the very least, it seems that way to me.”

 He tried to dismiss the remark as light hearted as possible, but kept an air of strictness to his words. Despite being mostly avoidant of conflict, it was obvious Henri did not like what was said.

All this title nonsense made Henri vastly uncomfortable. He couldn’t fathom considering himself above anyone else in the world, but his rank told him he needed to. William, on the other hand, was able to take that on quite well. He had no trouble in using what power he had to either intimidate or persuade others into doing his bidding. It was a practice that the eldest prince was not envious of missing.

“In any case, a true man worth his salt would value others as his equal. Unless, of course, he has insecurities in other areas. Ones I do not share myself.”

The prince spoke with a hidden cheekiness, shrouding his words in a cloak of ease. He did still think about the other part of the mans words, and cleared his throat uneasily.

“Windhelm can stand fast in many battles, but personally I do not want to risk the lives of any more innocent people for pride alone. It is my belief to evacuate the citizens before any aggressive actions can be taken for either side. They’re to be protected above all else."
« Last Edit: October 31, 2018, 11:48:39 PM by henri »
YOU REALLY SHOULDN'T THINK ABOUT GOD
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Offline grace

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Re: queen of the angels [p]
« Reply #4 on: October 31, 2018, 10:47:22 PM »

grace Elisabeth Calistoga


Grace watched as Henri fired right back at her elder brother. She was actually quite flattered at how quickly he jumped to her defense. She was perfectly capable of doing it herself, but something about him doing it just seemed... special. Petyr adopted an embarrassed look on his face as the prince both defended Grace and disagreed with all ideas out on the table, and actually, Grace agreed with Henri. They needed to be planning an evacuation of some sort.

Petyr looked at Grace and narrowed his cold, gray eyes, a look in which she returned. They looked pretty similar as far as hair color and eye color went. They took after their mother in looks, but their father in fierceness. Petyr did not have plans to use this trait for the good of his people. In fact, he wanted the throne. And the only way he was going to get that was to marry the love of his life, Prince Henri Ashdowne. Much to his dismay, however, Prince Henri had already given his heart to someone else, and to look at that someone else everyday made him sear with anger.

Grace smiled at Henri, clearing her throat to voice her idea regarding evacuations. ”Has anyone considered getting in contact with an outside kingdom for refuge, or even military assistance? If we can get a message to, say, Astyre, requesting help, I’m sure we will have the evacuation problem solved. Astyre is our sister country, and I have every faith that they will welcome our people with open arms,” she suggested, giving Petyr another harsh glare as he pretended to gag at her words.

”It will be a dangerous journey, no doubt, but there have been no reports on anything going on in the air. Perhaps we can find someone to take a hippogriff to a Astyre- it’s about a day’s flight. It’s the quickest and safest way to get there, but who do we send?” she murmured thoughtfully, a tad embarrassed that she had not thought that far ahead.

Petyr cleared his throat. ”I think we should send you, my sister. It was your idea and you clearly know the way so well.”

« Last Edit: October 31, 2018, 11:36:27 PM by GRACE »

Offline BABS

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Re: queen of the angels [p]
« Reply #5 on: October 31, 2018, 11:47:57 PM »

Henri Earl Ashdowne
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In spite of himself, Henri sent Petyr a sly smirk upon seeing the embarrassment that clouded his face after his retort. He did not happen to notice the chilly glare both Grace and her oldest brother sent to each other behind his back, however. He focused on his father, whom seemed to perk up at what his son had mentioned. Just as the king was to turn around and question what it was the prince was thinking, Grace spoke and further evaluated the plan.

William squinted his eyes at the idea. His own had been full of battle and bloodshed, and to hear such an option left him dazed. He gave a sarcastic snort.

“Oh yeah, and run away with our tails between our legs? What kind of message would that send? We’d be a laughing stock. Everyone would figure we were cowards-“ His words were cut off by the king raising a hand in dismissal.
An air of silence fell onto the room as King Alfred considered Grace’s words carefully, only to be broken when he clasped his hands together thoughtfully.

“You take after your father, Grace. An excellent idea indeed.”

William was about to object when Luella sent a swift pinch to his left arm. Although irritation did cross his face, he largely remained in a fuming silence. Even someone as bullheaded as the youngest prince knew that there would be no altering the king’s mind when it was made like this.

“There are some riders in Windhelm. I’ve seen them practice before. Perhaps one of them can be trusted to deliver the request?” The princess offered her own suggestion hopefully. She’d been wordless throughout the meeting, and her eyes sparkled about being able to get a word in.

Just as King Alfred was about to respond to his daughter, a frantic voice could be heard just outside to shut door of the map room. Another silence fell across the room as the noise made it’s way closer. Suddenly the door open, revealing a very pale faced messenger, holding a sheet of paper tightly in his hands.

“My Lords! I beg your pardon, but there has been a terrible tragedy.” The man seemed to have traveled from a long distance very quickly, as his face was drenched in sweat and he was trembling like a leaf in the wind. “The lower village has been attacked. A bomb of sorts. Forces have been sent out to search for survivors, but it isn’t looking well.”

Selena gasped and grasped her husband’s arm. “Alfred, that isn’t far from us. It must be the Invaders sending some sort of message.”
The king took the paper from the messenger, his eyes scanning over the report in a solemn silence. The queen had none of the wait, and jumped into action.

“We’ll send any survivors into a camp in the higher village. I don’t care if they need to stay in the castle. We must tend to the wounded and make arrangements for any children orphaned. My god, how could they do such a thing?”

Selena looked at the writing over her husband’s shoulder and turned to Edward. “It appears the area near Calistoga manor has taken the brunt of the attack. I do not believe it is still standing.”

Alfred set the report down and sighed roughly. “We’ll have you stay here until the state of your home has been confirmed. I couldn’t live with myself if you were to leave and there be another attack.” He turned to the messenger. “Thank you for bringing this to me. I will have arrangements made immediately. Please learn the number of survivors and injured, and report back to me promptly.”

The messenger left in a hurry to complete his orders, and Alfred pinched the bridge of his nose. It felt as though his kingdom as collapsing around him, and he was powerless to stop it. He was supposed to be the one to make everyone feel safe. Now he was failing.

The tenseness of the situation rested on everyone’s shoulders. An unknown amount of innocent lives had just been lost as they all sat talking just moments before.

“Selena, please go forth with your idea. I will have some of our men sent down to those areas immediately to guard. Have our physicians set up a medical ward.”

The Queen nodded and turned to Victorie. “Please do stay here until your safety can be confirmed. I couldn’t bare it if something else were to happen.”


YOU REALLY SHOULDN'T THINK ABOUT GOD
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Offline grace

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Re: queen of the angels [p]
« Reply #6 on: November 01, 2018, 12:24:33 AM »

grace elisabeth calistoga


Grace beamed at the King's praise and nodded in agreement to Luella's words, before they were promptly interrupted by the pale-faced messenger. When Selena insisted the Calistogas stay at the palace, Grace's heart almost leaped out of her chest, and she very quickly cast her steely gray gaze upon Henri to see his reaction for such an idea. Victoire accepted as soon as Selena offered, not even bothering to find out her husband's opinion. Edward was far too busy supporting his friend, their sons gathered around. With everyone occupied again, Grace turned to Henri and inhaled sharply.

She reached down and took his hand, running her thumb over the subtle vein that protruded from his skin. His hands were cold. This was a devastating blow for any of them, because he would someday have to deal with these things himself. She gave his hand a soft, supportive squeeze, much to Victoire and Selena's satisfaction as they looked at her, then each other, before rushing off to assist the physicians in setting up. Grace wanted to help, but what of her idea? Who were they going to send to Astyre? The plan would surely be discussed more tomorrow- everyone was focused on survivors of the attack.

The day was long for the sensitive-stomached Grace. Many times, she had to excuse herself to take a break when someone came in, gushing crimson blood all over the marble floors, or someone else dragged themselves to help, missing their legs. Grace found it exceptionally difficult to help with the children who had been injured and/or orphaned. She certainly cried a lot that day. Luckily for her, she didn't spend much of the day with her brothers, as both of them would have teased her and made fun of her at every opportunity.

Dinner was uneventful. And quiet. The younger prince and the two Calistoga brothers exchanged strategy ideas all evening, but everyone else seemed to have more important things on their minds. How were they going to evacuate an entire kingdom when the enemy has successfully, and a tad alarmingly, pinpointed and attacked city center? Was their target the royal family? The thought shook Grace to her very core, but she remained poised. Everyone split up as soon as the last person set own their spoon from finishing off their soup. It was snowing quite heavily outside, and despite the general chill in the air, the soup was very much needed.

Lord and Lady Calistoga retired to their bed chambers in the Royal Corridor, as did Alfred and Selena, followed by Luella and William, whose bedrooms also lie down that hallway. Grace stood alongside Henri and bid him goodnight, with every intention of sneaking out of her room and into his- and he knew it. At their departure, Grace engulfed her lover in a strong, genuine hug. She breathed in his scent and exhaled deeply. He was enchanting. She pulled away and offered a small smile, heading in the direction of the room she wouldn't be sleeping in tonight.

Petyr, reluctantly on his way to his room, which was to be shared with Norman, paused and watched Grace and Henri. He clenched his fists and stormed off, following Norman to their room.

After Grace was positive that there was no one stalking the halls, she quietly slipped out of her room and into Henri's- he knew she was coming. She was out of her evening gown and into a silk and lace nightgown that showed off particular curves rather nicely. It was complimenting, to say the least. Her dark waves had been let down, and she wore soft slippers that protected her dainty feet from the chilly stone floors of the bedchambers. Closing Henri's door behind her, she turned to greet him, smiling slightly. "Hello again."


Offline BABS

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Re: queen of the angels [p]
« Reply #7 on: November 01, 2018, 10:10:52 PM »

Henri Earl Ashdowne
FACECLAIM

The following hours were extremely difficult to go through. Henri was left to supervise the flow of survivors, and like Grace, the sight of the injuries made his stomach turn. It especially bothered him when those brought in hurt were children. He saw many youths come through the doors either battered and dazed or alone and scared. So many were made orphans by this attack. There had never been anything like it in Windhelms’ history. These level of event simply never happened in the once sleepy kingdom.

The turmoil fizzled out slowly but surely as time went on. Better suited medical facilities were established and the injured were moved there. A few shelters were also raised to help with the now homeless and orphaned. Even after the last person was moved out, Henri’s head still buzzed with the chaos. The only thing that kept him going was the brief glances he was able to share with his beloved when there was time.

At dinner, the eldest prince ate along with his family in their shared tense silence. Very few bits of conversation could be made. Everyone was still frazzled from the chaos that had occurred so suddenly. Nobody expected this to happen. In consequence, they weren’t very hungry.
When everyone was excused to go into their chambers, Henri purposely kept by Grace’s side as he bid his parents and siblings goodnight. Although he couldn’t help but notice the lingering gaze of his mother, there was otherwise no notice of their actions as they slipped into the corridor together.

The genuine embrace from Grace made all the built up tension from the stressful day melt completely. He both adored and spited moments such as these. On one hand he loved having his lover in his arms, but it was torture that these feelings must be saved only for the few moments they were alone. Each bit made him crave more.

When she pulled away and began to head towards her room, he caught her smile and immediately his suspicions were confirmed. He knew as well as she that her assigned bed would be empty tonight. The prince reluctantly opened his bedroom door and vanished inside. He was fueled only by the knowing of what was to come.

When he was inside his room, Henri decided to make it appear a bit cozier. The crimson velvet decor and dark wood easily made the entire place seem grim at times. To combat the cold, he started a light in the fire place, and fiddled with the flames until there was a decent blaze going. Every bit of paperwork that had been littering the floor and tabletops was cleared and stowed away with his stationary.

The distant sound of the large grandfather clock in the halls told him the time had just struck 12 o’clock. If his thoughts were correct, she’d be here any moment now. Nobody wondered the halls on this floor at midnight. The only movement in the castle this time of night was the rare housemaid that was preparing what was needed for the next day. After that, everyone was asleep.

Henri had been sat on his velvet sofa, his eyes scanning over a book when the movements behind him made a small smile creep upon his face. He set it down and stood, turning to face Grace as she entered.

Christ, she was beautiful. It wasn’t only in her perfect figure and angelic curls; No. Grace was the type of woman to carry her radiant beauty in her smile and glowing personality just as it did in her looks. Just the sight of her loving eyes could warm him even on his worst days. Her abilities in this perplexed him immensely. How could one sole person hold such an intoxicating power over him?
Henri smiled at her greeting as he approached.

“Why, hello to you too. What brings you in to my humble abode?”

His question was joking and he reached around her waist, pulling her gently closer as he pressed his lips to hers. His grin softening as he reluctantly pulled away. His gaze admired her for a split moment before leading her elsewhere.

The two eventually made their ways back to the velvet sofa across from the fire that had been lit earlier. He was laid back with his lover cuddled next to him. The prince couldn’t comprehend how a woman such as Grace could find herself infatuated with him. He felt unworthy of such a loving person. In his eyes, she was a perfect as the word could be. She was her namesake in every inch. He loved her with all his heart and it pained him deeply to not be able to express that for the world to see. He felt her snuggled up against his chest, and he couldn’t help but let a smirk cross his features. If that moment in time could go on forever, he wouldn’t mind one bit. He could die a happy man.

Grace had an aura about her that made even Henri envious. He watched from afar her interactions with his people, and it only further built his love for her. There was no doubt that his role as heir to the throne was something Henri took very seriously, and being able to find such a loving and caring woman to have at his side was a blessing in its purest form. Even today through the grim and gore, she held fast and did her role in maintaining peace and hope to those that needed it. He couldn’t possibly thank her enough for that. The things she saw were horrid, yet she pulled herself together.

The ever racing mind of the prince traveled back to before his lover was even a glimmer in his eye, and oh how dreary life seemed. He mused over his tasks and drifted through life as an observer of himself; never truly living. How had he not gone mad with such a mundane existence? Yet now he felt as alive as could be. It was as though just the mere presence of Grace in his life had breathed him into a new man. He was surely a drastically changed one if not that.

YOU REALLY SHOULDN'T THINK ABOUT GOD
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Offline grace

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Re: queen of the angels [p]
« Reply #8 on: November 01, 2018, 11:36:09 PM »

grace elisabeth calistoga


Grace has never been so intoxicated over one man before. At the tender age of twenty, she had been exposed to a plethora of men, in hopes that a combination of her love and her parents' approval, she would be suited to be someone's wife. A worthy man, someone to give her purpose. The very thought angered Grace, and it seared through her bones. How could her parents auction her off like livestock? And then, she was introduced to Prince Henri. Their parents constantly bet on the fact that the two would someday marry and combine two excellent bloodlines.

Through her irritation, seeing Henri approach her made her knees feel weak. He bragged about her power over him, but what about the other way around? He occupied her thoughts constantly. Fantasies of King and Queen Henri Ashdowne filled her dreams, and she would sacrifice her soul to be the one to provide him with a happy, fulfilling life. It was especially difficult for royals to be genuinely happy. They sacrificed a lot more than they are ever given credit, often times in the best interest of their people. Grace was determined to change that, at least for Henri. For such a pure soul, he was getting the ass deal on a lot of things- including watching his homeland fall apart around him. Being heir apparent, so young and unmarried, Henri was protected at all possible costs. He was the sole future- the Once and Future King of Windhelm.

She drew in a shaky breath as he grabbed her by the waist and pulled her into the room. His touch set her soul on fire. The kiss was nothing short of the deprived passion he had kept hidden since they had last been alone. She followed as he led them over to the grand fireplace burning in the corner of his room. He had prepared for her quite nicely. Sitting down next to him, she inhaled deeply. Deprivation proved too strong for the pair to ignore, despite the tragedy from earlier.

In the morning, a massive clap of thunder jolted Grace awake. It must have been just after dawn, for lightning was still lighting up the entire sky. She groaned and rolled over, pulling the satin sheets over her pale, bare body. Looking at her surroundings reminded her of last night's shenanigans and a sly smile crossed her face a bit devilishly. She glanced over at Henri and leaned over, stroking his face gently. "Wake up, my Lord," she purred.


Offline BABS

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Re: queen of the angels [p]
« Reply #9 on: November 03, 2018, 02:38:04 AM »

Henri Earl Ashdowne
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Henri, too, was awoken by the thunder clasp, but only slightly. His eyes only opened when he felt a soft hand touch his cheek and a devilish voice calling him.

My Lord

Such a powerful term in more ways than one. There were very few instances where he enjoyed being called by his title, yet it appeared Grace had found her way. Sly little devil she was. No matter, though. As mentioned, he rather liked it.

Taking a brief moment to collect himself and his conscious, the prince turned his head towards Grace, his own cheeky smile lit across his face. “Good morning, my love.” His voice was deep with grogginess. His eyes scanned the partially opened window to see the rain falling in sheets outside, groaning slightly at such an inconvenience for the day. What was the point in a storm if you couldn’t take a day off to just lounge in bed? Not being able to do that with his beloved was definitely saddening.

Another rumble sounded from outside and almost dulled the knock on his bedroom door. Every muscle tensed in his body, but he recognized the voice following.

“My Lord, it is almost time for you to be up. You have another meeting with the Calistoga’s.”
It was one of the servants making a wakeup call. Oh, if only the poor thing knew what was hiding beyond that oak door.

“Ah yes, I’ll be down shortly.”

It was after that the two were forced out of bed and to hurriedly dress themselves. The prince could only thank his lucky stars that this servant wasn’t as persistent as the others were, and had the decency to not enter his room. That would’ve been hard to silence.

Henri checked the halls to be sure it was empty, then allowed Grace to follow him as they headed toward the meeting. On the way there, William exited his own room and was forced to awkwardly walk beside them. He looked a bit disheveled, but didn’t speak of why. It was a strange sight, as prince couldn’t imagine his brother would still be torn up over the tragedy. Maybe he had underestimated the others commitment.

When they approached the room, he gave his secretive lover a quick smile of encouragement before opening the door and stepping through. Another day of pretending like they really didn’t know each other in the ways that they did, he supposed.

Inside the room, most everyone was already there save for the princess. This wasn’t surprising, as the youngest royal despised situations such as these. Luella was hardly ever seen when conflict raised and planning was done to combat it.

The occupants were all crowded around the map and talking in monotone voices, trying to declare the specific route they wanted to take. Selena glanced up as the three entered and gave a smile. “Hello, my dears. How did you sleep? I know the storm must’ve been an awful thing to awake to. Gave me quite a fright, I’d say.”
YOU REALLY SHOULDN'T THINK ABOUT GOD
IF SHE CAN'T SEE WHERE YOU HIDE

Offline grace

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Re: queen of the angels [p]
« Reply #10 on: November 03, 2018, 03:44:24 AM »

grace elisabeth calistoga


Grace quickly dressed herself, though she took longer than Henri- she was too busy teasing him with what he couldn't have. At least, not in that moment. They speed walked together, hands to themselves, towards the map room, where their families waited and planned. Another city had been bombed overnight. More dead, more orphaned, more lives destroyed. Upon entering, Grace dipped into a short curtsy to greet the Queen. At her words, Grace could have done nothing to stop the sly smile that slid across her face. "I, ah- I'm not sure about Prince Henri or the servants, but- I slept like a rock," she stated, clearing her throat and looking down, attempting to hide the smile that was growing larger at her own dirty joke. The nerve of her!

Victoire looked up at her daughter's words and squinted. "Really? The servants reported you were not in your chambers this morning. Bed untouched. Didn't light so much as a candle," she murmured away from the men. She had a knowing glint her eye, but said nothing. Grace shrugged it off, clearing her throat again. She didn't have much hand in the planning, and in fact, chose to keep herself occupied with other things of importance. The official rider had already been sent off to request help from Astyre, and that in itself felt like a weight off of Grace's shoulders. She couldn't imagine the anxiety that King Alfred currently suffered.

The day was relatively uneventful, and surprisingly, Grace did not dwell on the idea that her home may be in ruins. That home never felt like home anyways, so she was not quite so upset as Petyr was. Petyr indeed had a very bad day, for he spent much of it bickering with his sister about finding suitors who weren't royals of a kingdom falling apart.

Grace snorted at his proposition. "You are very bad at being a closeted homosexual, Petyr. Be honest with yourself and just tell Henri how you feel," she suggested. Knowing very well which parts Henri preferred, she certainly didn't have an issue with her brother confessing his love for her beloved. Petyr narrowed the cold gray eyes that he shared with his mother and sister. "You make a mockery of me and my struggles!" he snapped, clenching his fists. Grace adopted yet another snarky grin. "No no, dear brother, I am merely expressing my concerns. You're stringing yourself out over a man who will never return your feelings."

Petyr glared at her. "I see you trying to win him over. You don't stand a chance. I see the way he looks at some of these serving girls," he muttered in defeat. "You reek of sin and you're a slut, Grace. How do you think Father would react to you sleeping around?"

Grace raised an eyebrow. "Honey, he's looking past those girls and he's looking at me. And even if that were true, I'd still be ahead of you because I am a woman. I can give him children, among other things- that you can't." she murmured quietly, her cockiness definitely wearing off. She didn't take too kindly those threatening her position next to Henri. "There will be a King and a Queen Henri Ashdowne. Two kings are not in Windhelm's future. At least not for you," she hissed, turning and brushing past him. Petyr possessed no evidence that Grace had been with Henri before, so she made sure not to let his threat bother her.

It did bother her enough that she deemed it necessary to take a ride in the cold air to clear her mind and get out of the stuffy palace. She promised Henri that she would be in bed next to him before the clock struck midnight- she just needed some alone time before she gave him a night that would keep the inhabitants of that corridor up awake all through the night. Her confidence was certainly shaken, and she needed that assurance that Henri did truly love her that way. She knew he did, but Petyr's words made her uneasy.

So, after dinner, Henri went off by himself and Petyr watched his sister mount a horse below. A wicked smile grew uncontrollably, and he stalked off to bed for the night, waiting patiently for the screams that were sure to follow. Grace mounted her horse and pulled the massive cloak Henri lent to her around herself, shivering in the cold. How anyone could adapt to this weather was beyond her, but she loved it.

The ride proved very much needed, as Grace enjoyed it immensely. The alone time, the chill, the bright moonlight streaming from above. It was romantic. If only Henri were there, perhaps it would be a little more romantic. If only Henri were there- perhaps he would have been able to protect her. Then again, she was glad he wasn't there, as he surely would have been killed.

Before Grace knew she was being hunted, her horse let out an excruciating cry of terror, and it threw Grace off, desperate to escape. Grace sat up in the snow to hurry and get to her horse and calm it before it disturbed anyone, but the silver stallion was surrounded by figures in black cloaks. Unable to see their faces, Grace reached for the sword at her waist that she realized she had forgot to bring. With this realization, a fresh wave of panic settled over her as one of the cloaked figures turned to face her, moving over in her direction.

She was paralyzed with fear as one cloaked figure held her down into the snow, and another oh-so-gently moved a lock of dark hair away from her neck, and then- bloodcurling screams erupted from Grace. One icy cold, snow-white hand slapped over her mouth to silence her as she began to feel weaker and weaker. Her vision became blurred and the last thing she saw before everything went black was her horse, laying limp in the snow.

In the morning, a serving girl practically flew into the palace, breathless and hysterical to bring the news to King Alfred. It took quite a bit of consoling from Queen Selena to get a coherent sentence out of her mouth. "T-t-there's been an attack- in the town square, I-I think it's Lady Grace, she- I- she's been attacked by vampires. She's got deep bite wounds in her neck-" she spluttered, looking at King Alfred, then Prince Henri.

Alfred narrowed his eyes and stood from his mighty throne. "Guards! I need eight of you to go fetch Lady Grace. Bring weapons. She's likely dangerous. Bound her by the wrists in solitude in the dungeons. I will have the physicians and myself inspect her condition later," he grumbled, sitting back down. He held up a hand to silence any protest from Henri. He know he wouldn't be happy about restraining her, but he could not afford to take the chance of Grace going off the rails inside the palace. Too much was at risk.

The soldiers, with struggle, brought and restrained Grace in the dungeons. Once bolted, she stopped fighting. Being restrained felt unnatural. Grace looked up at one wrist, locked in a cuff bolted to the stone wall. She felt insanely hungry, and some kind of pain? She couldn't tell where the pain was located, but it was there. Watching a hysterical Victoire come up to the bars of her cell had no effect on Grace. She couldn't understand why she was so upset. She wouldn't know why until much, much later.

Offline BABS

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Re: queen of the angels [p]
« Reply #11 on: November 07, 2018, 01:03:40 AM »

Henri Earl Ashdowne
FACECLAIM

Henri had begun to pick up on the negative energy radiating between Grace and Petyr. Of course, he knew the two weren't close, but a bottled up conflict seemed to be brewing quite heavily.

He tried to keep his nose out of their business, but it was hard to stay in line when in his position. Grace was his promised one, and Petyr was her brother. He cared about them both, albeit in varying degrees.

However, the youngest prince couldn't follow in his older brothers footsteps. Will had taken a small interest in the eldest Calistoga son. There was just something becoming about the man.

This was why, when on his way to his room, the muffled argument coming from behind closed doors caught his attention. He recognized the voices of Lady Grace and Lord Petyr, but they sounded very agitated with one another.

Curiosity overcoming his politeness, the prince leaned against the dark oak to listen in on what was being said.

"- reek of sin and you're a slut, Grace. How do you think Father would react to you sleeping around?"

Jerking away from the door in surprise, Will furrowed his brows in curiosity. He wasn't daft enough to not know what was being implied there. Henri and Grace's relationship was somewhat known to him, but not at that degree. He wouldn't of suspected his brother to have gone sleeping with this woman.

Who the hell did they think they were?

Pressing back for more conversation, he caught the edge of another sentence.

"Two kings are not in Windhelm's future. At least not for you."

This made the prince stare hard at the ground. Ah, so now this was making sense. Petyr fancied his older brother. Thought himself a candidate, did he? Giving a small chuckle of bitterness, Will pulled away and began to hurry down the corridor to avoid crossing paths with Grace and having his snooping being uncovered.

A coldness began to spread over his heart as Will made his way into his room. From that coldness birthed a type of rebellion previously unknown to himself. In a way, it scared him.

Yet it mostly did not.

~~

Henri had gone to bed that night very unsure. Grace had insisted she be unattended in her night ride, claiming she'd be back by midnight.

He knew the conflict between herself and her brother must've boiled over, and in some ways he was glad for it. Maybe the two could finally start to make amends. Maybe he could finally get to know his lovers brothers without any kind of awkwardness driving a wedge between them.

Burying away most of his anxieties, Henri lent her his riding cloak to keep warm. The night was a dreadfully cold one, and he'd hate for her to get sick.

When the night dragged on and the grandfather clock rank twelve times, Grace still hadn't arrived and a pit of worry began to sink in. She should've been back by now.

A knock at his door made his heart leap, and the prince rushed from his bed to answer it. However, pulling it open revealed nothing but his little brother standing with a parcel in his hand.

"Oh, William. Is there something wrong? Have you seen Grace? I worry for her safety in this weather."

The brunette tilted his head to the side as innocently as a puppy, his wide green eyes shining with blissful ignorance.

"No, my brother. Not to worry though, I believe she left a bit later than intended. Probably lost track of time."

The youngest prince cleared his throat and stuck out the package in his hand.

"Here, this came for you today. Forgot to give it to you earlier. Hope you don't mind the late visit."

Taking the parcel from his brothers hand, Henri shook his head. "Not at all. I do wish we could see each other more. I miss our talks."

Will seemed to freeze for a second, unsure of what to say. "Yes, I do as well," he muttered under his breath with a cloud of uncertainty over his freckled face. Suddenly, the young prince cleared his throat and seemed to snap out of his uncertainty.

"I'll leave you, Henri. If you want my advice, just go on to sleep. Don't worry yourself over Lady Grace. Believe me, there's nothing you can do."

Henri squinted a bit at the last part of his brothers words, but before he could ask, William had already begun to make his way down the hall and towards his own room again.

The parcel had turned out to be a few more requests for comment by concerned citizens. These had began to pile in the corner of his room. Usually, the eldest prince took his interactions with his subjects very seriously, even if only by letter. In most cases, each one would get a wordy response. However, these times prevented him from even writing one.

Taking the strange words of William as meaningful advice, Henri blew out his candles and settled into bed. Grace would be fine. There was no point in being upset.

~~

Morning came quickly, and Henri felt his heart jump when his bedside was still empty. He dressed himself quickly, trying to rationalize his anxious thoughts. Perhaps she had just woken up earlier? Not likely as he'd of at least felt her leave.

The prince made his way down the corridor and into the dining room to find his family and their friends enjoy breakfast. There was no Grace.

Chaos quickly ensued soon after. Before he could hardly get the question from his mouth, a panicking girl had bursted into the palace and made quite a ruckus as she tried to explain her news.

Grace had been attacked? By vampires?

Henri felt as though he could faint. Electric waves of shock jolted throughout his entire body. No, there was no way. Vampires never came as far as Windhelm. They stayed in the forest.

When his father demanded Grace be kept in restraints, Henri did try to object loudly. When he was silenced, a wave of irritation consumed him. Vampiric or not, his fiance would never harm a soul if she could help it.

Servants scattered all over the place, urgently trying to prepare for the arrival. Every one of the royal children were ordered to their rooms for their safety. Knowing damn well that he wouldn't be there long, Henri obeyed and paced back and forth once inside. It didn't matter what they said, once he knew for sure Grace was in the dungeons, he would sneak to meet her.

This happened after a few more grueling hours of waiting. Passing servants whispered about the Lady's condition to one another as they made their way elsewhere. Confident, Henri exited his room and made his way down to the depths of the dungeon cautiously.

It proved to be quite a challenge, but he was able to sneak inside to the area Grace was being held.

The guards weren't stationed, making it easy for the prince to rush up to the bars anxiously.

"Jesus Christ, Grace! Are you alright? I knew I should've come for you when you weren't back by midnight. This is all my fault. I'm so sorry, my love."
YOU REALLY SHOULDN'T THINK ABOUT GOD
IF SHE CAN'T SEE WHERE YOU HIDE

Offline grace

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Re: queen of the angels [p]
« Reply #12 on: November 07, 2018, 03:19:53 PM »

grace elisabeth calistoga


Those hours were indeed grueling. Grace had to go through the transformation restrained and being watched. Others like her had the luxury of privacy and freedom in the forest. Once the guards reported that Grace was safely restrained, Alfred headed down to investigate. It surely didn't surprise him that Henri had beat him down there. There was no keeping him from her, no matter what orders he might pass.

He cleared his throat as he approached, standing next to his son at the bars. "I know you don't like it. It's for her safety, as well as ours. She's not herself, son. She can't control herself if she hurts someone, or god forbid one of you children," he explained gently, setting a hand on his son's shoulder. "Her condition will be reported hourly as she goes through this. The physician deemed it too late to try to reverse it," he rumbled, resting his other hand on the hilt of the sword he wore at his waist. He paused, but continued. "Do you love her, Henri?"

Grace was Grace, but it wasn't... Grace. She was definitely not herself. She didn't respond to Henri's words, and deep down, she felt ashamed to look him in the eye. It wasn't being restrained, or even being gawked at like a zoo animal that was embarrassing, it was the fact that she felt like she couldn't take care of herself.






Offline BABS

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Re: queen of the angels [p]
« Reply #13 on: November 08, 2018, 12:33:37 AM »
Seeing Grace in that condition was heartbreaking. She looked completely hollow. A shell of the bright person she was mere hours ago. The prince sighed sadly, understanding her silence. He couldn't imagine the pain she was feeling.

Henri jumped when Alfred first entered, but relaxed when it was clear he wasn't in any kind of trouble. Backing away from the cell, he listened intently to his father's words as he went to lean against the cool stone wall adjacent to his previous position.

The question made his heart sink. Of course the answer was an easy one, but finally being able to say it to his father was a big leap. Although, he did suppose this day was bound to come at some point.

Henri swallowed hard and nodded his head. "Yes. With all my heart and soul I love her. I can't imagine spending my life without her. I understand the precautions we must take, but understand that it's hard to see her go through this. My only wish is that everything be done with Grace's own safety in mind as well. I couldn't bare to lose her."
YOU REALLY SHOULDN'T THINK ABOUT GOD
IF SHE CAN'T SEE WHERE YOU HIDE

Offline grace

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Re: queen of the angels [p]
« Reply #14 on: November 08, 2018, 01:23:44 AM »

grace elisabeth calistoga


Alfred let out a long exhale, moving to lean against the wall as well. "Grace's safety is just as much a priority as it was before. You and your brother and sister will always be above everyone else, though. You must understand that. From a father's perspective,-" he hesitated. Henri wasn't a father yet. Shaking it off, he restarted. "The royal physicians delivered all of the Calistoga children in the privacy of their manor. The day they came back with the report that their second child was a daughter named Grace, your mother and I practically jumped for joy," he murmured, beaming at the memory. "You were only a tiny boy at the time. Your mother was pregnant with Will, and when we heard the news that Lady Calistoga had given birth to a daughter... Edward and I made a marriage arrangement for the two of you."

He looked up at Henri for any sort of reaction. "We never tried to force you to spend time with her growing up. She was always around because of her father's position. The love you have for her is natural and genuine, and raw. We have had no interference." he explained. "I need you to understand the changes that Grace is going through and how this attack will affect you. If her transition goes smoothly and she can be trusted again, and you continue to be with her, understand that natural heirs are not a possibility. I know that you understand law, son. If you choose to be with this woman, you are abdicating the throne. With no possibility of natural heirs, this knocks you out of line." Alfred couldn't help but let his shoulders sink. He knew Henri would give away his position to the first peasant who asked for it. In a way, it was insulting to him. He had spent the last twenty five years preparing his pride and joy to continue his life's work. And he knew he'd give it away in a heartbeat for a half-dead woman.

Patting him on the shoulder again, he stood upright and drew his sword. "Guards. Retrieve an inmate from death row. I think it's about time we feed her before she becomes any more dangerous," he breathed, pulling Henri back by his shoulder. The guards disappeared, and moments later, came back with a middle-aged man in shackles. He had no idea what was about to happen to him. "Bon appetit, Grace," Alfred huffed, nodding for the man to be thrown into her cell.

Feeding was exceptionally difficult for Grace, especially in her restraints. The guards had to hold the oblivious man upright so that she could feed hands-free. The man's excruciating screams sent chills straight down Alfred's spine and echoed through his bones. He felt a tad nauseous to know that they had just witnessed what Grace had gone through just hours before.

"Come," he rumbled to his son, nodding towards the stairs. "Your mother and the Calistogas are waiting. We all need to have a discussion."