RP Nocturne - Danse Macabre


Staff member
The Abyssal Soirée

every fifty years, the Covenant holds a formal meeting, the Summit, during which the heads of the relevant Clans gather together and discuss the state of things; politics, rules, conflicts, anything relevant to keeping their paper-thin peace. Perhaps to keep the rest of their members from scheming behind their backs, or perhaps because the Réquiem are incapable of escaping their desire for extravagance, the Summit is always held alongside a party; the Abyssal Soirée. It is a lavish affair, though that goes without saying. Music, dancing, blood, and a chance to socialise with other Kindred in a way that doesn't necessitate ripping their throats out. Though a relatively recent tradition, only on its third iteration, the Soirée has so far gone on without major incident.

This year, however, things seem to be different. The first sign that something was wrong, as usual, came from the maddened ramblings of the Reveur- but those could easily be dismissed by the other Clans as, well, the maddened ramblings of the Reveur. The second sign was the suspicious silence of the Iratus and the rest of the Recreants, who were acting suspiciously low-key in the lead-up. The the third, and most obvious sign, came when those very Recreants gatecrashed the Soirée- infiltrating the secret ballroom with the intention to party like the rest of their Kindred, sending a masked representative to the Summit whilst the rest of them enjoyed the festivities. Harmless, it seems- until someone ends up dead.

But, for now, no body has been found. For now, no peace has been shattered. Even the Recreants, gatecrashers aligned with Clan Iratus, seem to be behaving themselves. The Summit has not yet begun, and the Lords are still preparing- perhaps, once a verdict is reached, things will change, but they don't seem to be tending that way for now. For now. The issue of Clan Ecclesia, their role within the Covenant, and how it contradicts with their teachings is expected to be discussed, hotly anticipated by Ecclesia's congregation, but Father Benedictus has not made much of a statement on the matter.

In fact, he hasn't been seen at all since the festivities began.
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The fête of the evening
was a much anticipated thing, though a mere fifty years had passed since the last such gathering. Clara Ashgrove had the distinction of having been to all three of these events, which was not such an exclusive achievement as one might have thought. Many figures she recognized, though whether they should recognize her was something yet to be determined.

It was not that she should blend into the crowd inasmuch as her appearance itself was quite altered from the last such event. Clara had taken care to hide her scars, not so much as a kindness such that others might not have to view them, but so that she might not have to display them. Vanity was the least of her sins, by this time.

She wore mourning : fitted black crepe with only buttons for decoration, a veil falling over her countenance and her tresses nigh to the waistline. If the veil dimmed her vision, the sightless eye behind it dimmed it more, a pale-silver orb that had hung in its singular orbit since that night, long ago.

And would She be here? This was almost a certainty. It would be the first time that Clara had gazed upon Her since their falling out, and while she held no illusions that She should want to look upon Clara any more, Clara was not yet decided of her feelings on the matter. For now, it would be a matter of avoidance, and busying herself with other things.

It was a reverie, after all. A gathering of debauchery, where all of them celebrated the horrors they had become and the horrors they had unleashed.

She should not have enjoyed it so much.
Victoria loved parties, she loved extravagance. Jewels around people's necks and wrists catching on the lights and twinkling. It reminded her of her mortal days as an Opera diva. Days she yearned for. When she went to a party back then she was the esteemed guest, everyone wanted to speak to her. She took a tentative sip of the blood in her glass and grimaced. Not as good as her private supply. She delicately put the glass down and looked around for company to entertain her.
"Worry not, dear."
The Musekiller smiled, leaning over the piano,
"We're going to play well tonight, I have no doubt about that. Don't let their stares distract you- the only thing on your mind should be the keys, mm-hm?"

She patted the human on the shoulder and walked away, her patronising smirk immediately dissolving as soon as her back was turned. Filth, he was. Utter filth. Rarely did she ever feel this much contempt towards one of her muses, but this one was special; and, oh, he certainly knew he was. How much pointless chatter did she have to endure? How many pathetic insults did she have to withstand? How many days of work did she have to accept as lost, when he sat there and flat-out refused to play? He was begging her to kill him by the second week, and Beatrice only had her own stubbornness to blame for not granting his wish.

Perhaps it was his presence that put her in such a sour mood; though she was seldom seen in much higher spirits. This was a party, was it not? An Abyssal Soirée? And her muse, her work- why, it was one of the starring acts, one of the meticulously-selected pieces of entertainment for the night's guests. Most other Requiém would kill to be in her position, so why did it ring hollow?

She tapped her hand against her leg, feeling its cold porcelain through the fabric. That was why.

Oh, well. She couldn't spend the entire night feeling sorry for herself, or hatred for her muse; this was supposed to be a night of revelry, not tedious melancholy! Beatrice shook her head, snapping herself out of her trance, and walked towards the refreshments table, hoping that the blood-wine they chose this year was at least a tad drier than last.
Always with these parties, three times now in the last one hundred and fifty years. Were they enjoyable affairs? No. Were they important? Hah, half of those in attendance were scarcely past a century in age, so what did they know of the balance of matters? A fine joke, though she scarcely had it in her to laugh. Charlotte passed through the crowd with the airs of a woman of station, centuries locked away in her castle of bone and stone had failed to free her of those trappings of mortal nobility, not that she would be mindful. It was how she was taught to walk, so it was how she walked.

Her dress had done better to age with the times, or maybe her style of cocktail dress was a few years out of style. She never could quite come to understand how fickle people were with their clothing, but some things weren’t worth thinking too hard about. The dress was red and black silk, conservative by the standards of what others chose to wear, sleeveless with a triangular neckline, it fell almost to her ankles with a daring enough slit to the thigh. Perhaps to help with dancing. She wore a band of polished bone on her wrist, and another clasped to her thigh.

This soirée was a time for peace, but it was never bad to have something on hand, and they made quite the fetching fashion statement, no?

Now, a touch of entertainment would be nice, if only for the evening to go a little faster.
Now this was gonna be a fucking party.

A smirk spread across Marcus's face, watching his foster brothers and sisters feast upon what the higher echelons of society had to offer. The destruction hadn't started, yet, but it was only a matter of time. One of them would get bored with the festivities and start a fight, and the rest of them would smell the proverbial blood in the water and come swarming. But until then, Marcus was going to enjoy every fucking moment of this.

For now, his feet were kicked up on a piece of furniture that probably cost more than everything he was wearing, although that was a pretty low bar. A crystal glass was full of crimson liquid that Marcus was savoring. Or at least, that's what he looked like he was doing. In reality he was trying to figure out where the hell the flavor was supposed to be in this shit. Leave it to fucking Requiem to find a way to make one of the only enjoyable parts of their existence as dull as possible.

He certainly made for an odd sight, a battered, studded leather jacket, dirty and worn combat boots, hood pulled back to reveal bleached hair buzzed on the sides, all contrasted heavily with the lavish couch he draped himself along. A similarly beat-up backpack was on the floor next to him, two thin bundled up objects strapped to its sides. Insurance policies, just in case things got messy. And they would.

He could feel it in his blood.
Something was -- coming.

Important. Something important was coming. It was a good thing to distinguish between the two, wasn't it? Something was always coming, if something wasn't coming there'd be more cause for alarm than the somethings that would normally come. But important somethings, well, they only came every once and a while. They were the sort of things you put in your agenda. Save the date. Deadline for finals.

Tock tick tock.

Rory wasn't particularly dressed up for the occasion. She wasn't the sort of person that liked to dress up, and besides, it wasn't like she had the clothes to do it anyway. Her friends probably could find her some -- they were good at finding things -- but they were the ones who wanted her to be here, and they didn't particularly care about appearances. Instead, she sat huddled in an oversized military surplus jacket and a pair of fraying jeans, multicolored collection of watches running up both of her arms.

Digital, analog, in-between. Rolex, Swatch, Timex, Casio. Some of them had backlights, some of them had front lines, some of them had glowing paint and some didn't glow at all. All of them, however, had alarms - and all of them had been set for the exact same time. She must've -- done it sometime before. On the way here, maybe. She liked the alarms. They helped her remember when something important was coming, even when she forgot what that something was supposed to be. Deadlines were important. Good to keep track of them. But -- using all of them? She never used all of them. Never. Too many things to keep track of to waste that much time.

Which meant --

Whatever was coming, was big. Pulling her feet up onto her seat, she wrapped her arms around her knees, staring blankly out at the rest of the party.

"I'm worried," she muttered. "This is wrong. This is all wrong. Everyone shouldn't be here, not -- together. At once. They should be hiding. Running."
Good God, this was worse than those Hollywood afterparties. At the very least, nobody had made an ass of themselves yet-- including himself, which was a plus-- which might've suggested that vampires were only slightly more cultured than celebrity airheads, at the very least.

He still hadn't gotten used to... that. The term vampire, speaking it as if it wasn't just a fucking word on a page to denote some fictional character. No, vampires were real, and they had a whole society, a whole fucking... thing for themselves. At the very least, Vernon could translate his experience in entertainment to whatever the fuck this was-- he'd dealt with bloodsucking parasites plenty of times before, after all-- which helped calm him a bit as he walked into the ballroom proper. Helped that he had the only other vampire he knew beside him, at the moment. God, did he even want to meet any of these people?

Whatever. Was always what his agent told him: blow somebody, then blackmail them. And if you can't do that, network.

"I'd be hiding, too, if I was dressed like that." He muttered, glancing at the nearest dancer that seemed to have come here straight from Eyes Wide Shut On Ice. Vernon was dressed comparatively tame to some of the Victorian-era schlock on display-- a designer pea coat, well-kept slacks, and a pair of boots that helped keep the outfit somewhere above casual. For him, at least. Half of these fucks looked like they surgically removed their bottom ribs to fit into corsets better, or maybe it was just the consumption look that all vampires seemed to have.

Regardless, Rory seemed to be on-edge, and he knew better than to doubt her borderline-schizophrenic ramblings. He found that he had an uncharacteristic amount of patience for her... whole thing, which seemed to be more than most afforded her. Hell, he'd been assigned as a point of contact because he was new. Couldn't help but feel a bit bad at that.

"Let's get some drinks. Level you out a bit." He shrugged, hands in his pockets as he looked down to her with full-tinted glasses. "Or maybe it'll make you worse. Either way, could be fun. At the very least, we can just sit at wherever the bar is and people-watch. God knows there's endless entertainment, there."