Y17/01/01 New Year's Party

Cast: Apolo, Cassie, Luna, Tinkerbell, Jack, Ali, Cyrus, Olivia, Jules, Will, Della, Quagmire
Location: Western Botanic Gardens — The Huntington - San Marino
Synopsis: New Year's party to ring in Year 17.

Western Botanic Gardens - The Huntington - San Marino

At this hour, the western reaches of the botanical gardens are mostly given to
shadows. Lit by a trail of footlights, a sweeping arc of pathway
describes the furthest extent of the subtropical and Australian
gardens, with only the surrounding bamboo border to mark the Japanese
garden that lies off to the west. Ombu Lane bisects the Australian
garden on the north and the subtropical on the south, leading back east
to the jungle garden. Beyond this, there is only the odd signpost to
direct the wanderer through their nocturnal ramblings.

This room has +views and places.







Obvious exits:

Huntington Circle (NE) Eastern Gardens (E)

It's a party, and the invitation was quite general, even if formal attire was
requested. Furthermore, there are party hats of the usual ridiculous
variety, including shiny glitter tiaras with Year-17 in large figures.
Cassandra stirs about, checking on things.

Luna's arrival is fairly unimpressive, though her remarkably stuffy and
traditional Chinese outfit might get a glance or two.

Jules slips away from the corner she has been hiding in, and drifts slowly
across the gardens in search of one of those glittering tiaras.

Presently, some of the shadows off to the eastern edge of the gardens resolve
themselves into the shape of a slim, dark haired figure; the Seneschal
moving slowly up the path from that direction. His head is bowed
slightly as he contemplates a haphazard bouquet of flowers that appear
to have been plucked — probably illegally — from the Gardens

Apolo pauses on the very edge of the party area to survey the scene. His
expression is impassive as his eyes wander, skimming from here to
there, lighting on people and decorations a like, until Cassie is
found. His child pulls him forward and close to her, one of the
flowers, a large lilly bloom, is held out to her. "Cassie," he murmurs,
low voiced.

Quagmire starts to wander away from the center of the party, finding himself a
nice wall to sit against. The creature starts to chew at his feet,
unused to being this dolled up.

Tinkerbell wanders along with Quagmire, apparently going to hover along a wall
herself until things really begin, saving her socializing for later.
She murmurs quietly to the Nosferatu, with a thoughtful blink over the
rest of the guests.

Tinkerbell whispers to Quagmire, "Save your shoes, love … hate to see them go
the way of the others."

Upon spying Quagmire, Luna begins to make her way across the gardens towards
his chosen perch. "It's a long time no see, my dear," she says

Quagmire gives a look of horror to Tinkerbell. He hopes she didn't wash his old
clothes. Surely they'd disentigrate at the first sign of detergent. He
hears a familiar voice and gives a chirp, skittering to Luna's side.
"Hey Miss Luna! Been long time, yes." does he sound more feral then
before? Probably. He grunts. "Quag-Mah feel strange in monkey suit."

"Apolo," Cassie murmurs, and she takes the lily from him, looking quite touched
at her sire's gesture, even if he probably did just steal it illegally
from the garden. That doesn't trouble her. "Thank you," she says. "And
thank you for the necklace. You look beautiful tonight."

Tinkerbell just smiles slightly at Quagmire, apparently not really getting
what he was saying, or something, and looks up at Luna's approach;
"Keeper," she greets with a polite dip into a curtsey.

Luna returns Tinkerbell's curtsey politely, and winks at Quagmire. "You look
good. Though I suspect, not your idea, oui?" She grins and looks
towards Tinkerbell.

Quagmire grunts "Oh no no . Quags was told have to look nice and leave the
girls at home ." he explains "And try to sit in chairs.." he shakes his
head and whispers. "When no one is looking. You see that dirt by the
flowers? Im in it."

Tinkerbell just grins at him, "Well, I invited him to the party, that's
all…" She demures, with a little laugh. She glances over towards the
dirt, and covers her mouth with her hand.

Luna's brows furrow at Quagmire, and she glances over towards the
aforementioned dirt. A puzzled brow quirks.

Quagmire pantomines rolling for a moment and winks under his glasses. The tiny
street man then goes over to Tinkerbell, grabbing her hand. "So
introduce me to people."

Apolo has a faint smile for her, even if it doesn't quite reach his eyes.
"You're welcome. You needed something to go with your dress." Necklace
or flower — he doesn't indicate which one he means. The Seneschal is
still left with a handful of flower, which he sets about plucking the
petals off idly, in a 'loves me, loves me not' gesture. "You look
lovely, poppet. How are things going?"

"The party is just now starting," Cassandra says to the Seneschal with a little
smile, and she seems pleased with the situation in general. "I hope
that it is quite the soiree, you know. Would you like to walk with me
and greet people?"

Tinkerbell seems mildly startled by Quagmire's aquisition of her hand and just
blinks a couple more times before nodding and saying, "Well, I guess
you met the Keeper," with a slightly apologetic smile at Luna and a

Quagmire grunts. "Yeah. Been konwing Miss luna for years. We go way back yes?"

Luna nods once. "Oui, we have known each other for quite some time. I think
Quagmire might also remember the hostess, Mademoiselle Cassandra, and
her sire, the Monsieur Seneschal."

"Of course," Apolo rumbles and falls into easy companionship next to his
childe, careful to maintain some distance between them, so he is not
touching her. He has his petals to pluck, so Cassie gets to lead.

Quagmire chirps. "Never met the Seneschal. Not that I know of. But Cassandra.
Yes. Be knowing her.."

Tinkerbell seems slightly off-set of her usual confidences, but she nods a
little and smiles at Quagmire, "Well, we can go say hello if you like,"
She says, and blinks again.

With steady confidence and grace, Cassandra steps over towards where
Tinkerbell, Quagmire, and Luna linger, so that if they head in her
direction, paths will meet. She is unconcerned about the distance
between herself and her escort. "Good evening, and a happy new year to
you all," she offers brightly.

Jules has found herself one of those glittery tiaras and she carefully places
it upon her head, and then scurries off once more to find herself a
quiet out of the way area.

Luna bows to Cassandra, and bows even more deeply to Apolo. "Happy new year
indeed," she says with a smile.

Quagmire chirps. "Allo, Ms. Cassandra." Quagmire say in a soft voice, bowing
deeply. "How you is?"

Tinkerbell curtsies politely to the hostess and the Seneschal with one hand,
as the other is occupied. She smiles pleasantly, "Happy New Year," She
agrees, with a bob of her head.

"Good evening," the Seneschal says, all politeness and restraint. There's a
smile to be offered around to them all even if there's little warmth
behind it.

Jack steps out of the shadows.

Jack has arrived.

Holding a pinata and tying it to a nearby tree, Jack drops it and looks rather
upset about this. Was he even there a moment ago? He mutters something
unintelligable to himself.

Jack eyes the pinata, still unbroken, and shrugs his shoulders.

Tinkerbell frowns slightly at Quagmire's scratching, but seems to give up on
the side of hopeless, and chuckles softly, "Quagmire wanted me to
introduce him to you," She explains with a little smile. Jack's
entrance is eyed sketchily, then her attention returns to Cassandra and
her sire.

"I admit that things are rather quiet yet. But we have noisemakers and party
hats, if you're interested," Cassandra offers with a little smile.

Luna's attention is drawn to the pinata. "What is that?"

Apolo plucks the last petal off a stargazer lily, the twin to the one Cassie's
holding and frowns, vaguely displeased at the denuded stem. The flower
is tossed off to the side; he's got others to work on. He's
uncharacteristically quiet, letting his child do most of the
socializing, watching her, quiet obviously, from the corner of his eye.

Jack turns, startled by Luna. One boot utterly destroys the pinata. A foul
look spreads across his face. "It /waaas/ a pinata." He looks down at
all the lovely candy and New Year's confetti. "Argh. I tell yeh, it's
jus'me luck. What store sells a damn pinata at this hour? I best get on
me way!"

Jules turns to look toward Jack as he steps on the pinata she offers rather
blandly, "Perhaps you should not have been skulking around? Then you
would not have been startled?"

"I don'mean to. It comes naaaturally t'me." replies Jack with a bit of a
laugh. He shakes his head at the mangled paper donkey.

"Perhaps we can get you some tape with which to mend it," Cassandra calls to
Jack with a pretty little smile. "And then you can promptly destroy it

"This be your party, lovely Cassandra. I don'wish t'muck it all up wit'calls
for tape and such." replies Jack. He picks up the pieces, and skulks
off towards the exit of this part of the Gardens. "I'll b'back wit'a
brand new one. This time, it won'be a DONKEY!" Something about that
makes him laugh hysterically.

Apolo lifts a hand to push back his hair — but its all nicely bound up and not
falling in his face for once. A mildly amused glance is sent his
child's way, and then he's off to investigate what was left in the
ruined pinata, tossing another ruined flower in his wake. He's running
out of ways to keep his hands occupied.

Luna blinks owlishly at Jack's departure, and eyes the pinata curiously.

Apolo brushes the tips of his fingers over the long sleeve of Luna's outfit.
"Lovely," he murmurs appreciatively before crouching down to examine
the pinata's guts, all sharkly and shiny and full of foil wrapped

"I do very much like your dress," Cassandra says to Luna with great warmth,
smiling at the woman. "You look lovely, as he says."

Luna's cheeks pinken faintly. "Merci. Its an old dress of mine, I forget how
long I've had it."

Jules continues to hide in her little corner of the gardens, her brown gaze
settling upon the gathered Malkavians, though she doesn't move to
interrupt nor join them.

Apolo ruffles his fingers through the confetti on the grass and sketches a
vague smile for both his clanmates, shooting it upwards from the crouch
he's assumed. "Ah, my pretty flowers," he sighs, and it seems like a
half-thought, cut off before he finishes it. "You make a good showing."

Luna's eyes fall to the sapphire, and widen quite a bit. "It's incredible."

"Thank you," Cassandra replies almost sheepishly. "I think it is quite
stunning, myself. I was delighted to receive it."

From his perch, Apolo waves a dismissive hand. It was nothing, the gesture
says, dripping glitter all over him in the process. Still, he seems
pleased that she is pleased, which makes him the happiest he's been
since walking in. Having finished his dissection of the pinata, the
Senschal rises, clutching his prizes in the dorm of handful of candies.
A glance carries over to the silent Jules, but he doesn't intrude on
her yet.

Jules's gaze goes to the sapphire as well, if she can see it
from her vantage point, before her gaze turns back toward Apolo. He is
considered for a moment before her gaze goes to the ground before her.

Tinkerbell has returns from wherever it was that Brujah go during these
things, sans Quagmire, but looking as pretty and … uh … skimpy as
ever. She seems to be in a good mood still, however, and drifts back
into the part as unobtrusively as she left.

Cyrus approaches from the Hungtington Circle.

Cyrus has arrived.

It's a massive sapphire, and as such is pretty eye-catching. Cassandra poses
slightly, to better show off the gemstone against her dress, which is
surprisingly simple for her. The elegance of it serves well as a
backdrop for the stone, however.

Apolo rises easily to his feet, trying to brush the clingy glitter off his
hands on his thighs, but all the gesture does is spread the stuff
around, so he ends up covered in a fine mess of it, sparkling across
his find black suit and in his dark hair, where he absently touched. A
frown creases his features, then a sigh comes to wipe it away. "Cassie
— " her name is an admonishment, but one gently given, teasing.

Cassandra turns to look at her sire, and she pouts briefly, only to replace it
with a smile. "Let me get you a party hat," she offers to the
Seneschal, promptly fetching one that will only add to his glitter

Tinkerbell just drifts about aimlessly for the moment, looking at decorations.

And in strides Cyrus, though most would be hard-pressed to recognize him at a
distance: All in black, all sharp and stately, half owed to the tux and
the rest to his own effort. He's cleaned up, and he's blessedly sober.
He pauses to adjust the cuff of his sleeve, snarling inwardly as if
he's guarding some secret pain, and he needs to remind himself to stand
straight and clear-eyed despite it. It's only after that he sweeps a a
wary glance through the gardens. His eyes of course come to rest on the

Jules is off hiding in a corner somewhere, away from the groups of people.
She's fidgeting now with the glittering plastic tiara on her head that
read 'Year-17'. It's taken off and fidgeted with, and then put back on.

Apolo follows Cassie's progress with his eyes and tries, desperately, not to
look overly put out at the suggestion he don a party hat. He is many
things in this domain, but a wearer of party hats does not seem overly
high on that list. While she is gone, the Seneschal drifts closer to

With shiny glittery party hat in hand, Cassandra is immediately distracted by
Cyrus. She heads delightedly in his direction. "My favorite cowboy,"
she says brightly. "You look dashing. Would you like a party hat?"

Cyrus loiters in the threshold for much longer than is polite. Staring perhaps,
his brow troubled- He's woken from his distraction as Cassy skips over,
and some light catches in his eyes as he sees her. He flashes a smile.
"Sure," he'll take the bullet, "bring it on."

Tinkerbell is still sans hat - but the Brujah seems quite content with that.
She finds a wall to lean on.

Wasn't he supposed to be inflicted with something? Apolo seems suddenly aware
that he was steeling himself for something that hasn't happened; dark
eyes flick over the party, glancing over Tinkerbell and poor Jules off
in her corner, but neither are his childe. She's found, eventually, all
white and glowing against the shadows, and Apolo's halfway towards her
before realizing who has distracted her. A pause, a hiccup in his
movements finds him regarding the other man with a startled once over.

Jules removes the tiara from her head once mores, fiddles with it a bit more
and then finally just lets it dangle by herself. The small woman moves
to start to wander the gardens now, perhaps finding another place to

Jules walks into the Rose garden

Tinkerbell remains on the wall calmly. Watching with her arms folded.

Cassandra promptly subjects Cyrus to the torment that was destined for Apolo;
the hat is very shiny. Very very shiny. Perhaps she smelled her sire's
desperation in regards to the matter of the party hat. "Come be social,
Cyrus. The night is still young."

Cyrus is still smiling down at his hostess as Apolo nears, tracking the
progress sidelong, teeth gritting beneath leery shade of his gaze. A
hand closes numbly upon the hat, and he nods an agreement to Cassandra.
"Seneschal," he greets at a distance, a snarl biting down into the

Apolo slides a hand along his hair, but there's nothing to smooth back — he
keeps forgetting his hair is all tied up, fancy like, and the gesture
is a habit that seems difficult to correct. Their conversation stirs
him back into action, crossing the grass to the pair in smooth strides,
his hands coming to knit behind his back. "Cyrus." Ice wouldn't melt in
his mouth.

Tinkerbell watches. Warily. She presses herself back into the wall a little.

It is at that point that Cassie switches sides. It's a very casual movement, a
little half-circle as she moves from Cyrus to Apolo. She looks to Cyrus
and smiles, then glances to Apolo. "You don't mind if Cyrus steals your
hat, do you? I could go fetch you another one," she offers. "But I
didn't think you'd mind."

Cyrus's eyes follow Cassie, and move on to Apolo when she leads him in that
direction. There's a slight roll of his shoulder, a tug at his sleeve,
but he refuses further temption to fidget. A deep breath lifts him
tall, a brow raised as he looks Apolo over. "Where's your date?" he
wonders, casually enough, before he casts a falsely-curious look to the
party hat which hung previously-forgotten in his hand.

Jules walks out of the Rose garden

Jules slips out of whatever hiding place she was in, and slowly heads for the
exit herself. If she must she'll quietly- as she can -skirt around
Apolo, Cassandra, and Cyrus.

Oh, Apolo has some choice words in response, all picked out and wound up, ready
to go — but there's Cassie at his side, smiling, and that's enough to
remind him to behave. So, instead of explosion, he offers a thin lipped
smile, and brushes some of the glitter from his sleeve. "I didn't feel
much like bringing him," the Senschal answers instead, managing to
forgo both profanity and incoherence. "I'll get my own hat, Cassie."
Right now, apparently — he's turning, stalking off, except he's headed
towards Tinkerbell, who is decidedly not near the hats.

"You should put your hat on, Cyrus," the little hostess reminds him with a
charming little smile.

Tinkerbell blinks a little at the oncoming seneschal as if he were possibly a
mack truck. Then she offers a small smile and straightens a bit,
obviously unsure if she should get out of the way, or what.

Cyrus's smile is lost. All breath leaves him in sigh, and he doesn't seem to
hear Cassy's words, or feel her smile, until a moment after, his gaze
flickering between her and the hat in a moment of drained confusion. He
nearly casts the hat to the ground, his patience gone, but he finds
Cassy instead, and manages to return her smile. "This is nice," he
mutters, nudging a gesture towards the venue, "The grass, the sky…"
he can't seem to see it, his eyes are having trouble focusing on
anything at the moment, before they shift back to follow the departed

Jules, thus, skirts around people and disappears from the gardens.

Jules walks back to the Circle.

Jules has left.

"Pay attention to me, Cyrus," Cassandra says quietly, through clenched teeth.
"Pretend for a moment that you're having fun. And it is a nice night. A
lovely venue. A lovely night." Her smile is a little tense.

"Hello 'bell," Apolo says, because he's found himself standing in front of her,
and even he seems a bit surprised at the pairing. Drawing to a stop,
letting his hands find his pockets to keep them from fidgiting, the
Seneschal stares at the Brujah. He's clearly at a loss for something to
say to her — they are not exactly boon companions, but there he is,
and there she is, so something has to be said. "Nice dress," he digs
for, like someone once told him women like to be told they look pretty.

Tinkerbell seems accepting enough of even this
attention-to-distract-from-further-detruction. A glance over Cyrus and
Cassandra confirms that she wants to assist in this - she smiles and
curtsies slightly for the Seneschal again, "Merci, Monsieur … I
remembered you'd asked me to ewar the plaid dress again just as I got
here." Her face falls, and she looks up through her lashes again
slowly, to venture, "You look very nice this evening as well." She
returns with a slow blink, and the edge of her mouth curls up, "The
glitter is a nice touch." But she keeps her chin dipped deferentially

Cyrus returns his attention to Cassandra, as she demands it, casting her a
briefly candid frown before he reaches out to stroke her hair, letting
his hand sink in deep and linger there, "It's nice night," he echoes
under his breath, as if it was a secret to be confirmed between the two
of them, and somewhere in this, he finds his smile again, though his
eyes arn't quite there yet. "A new year. A new night." Remembering
himself, he begins to draw back. "Any resolutions to state?" A tilt of
his head, as if he's genuinely curious now.

Apolo shoots an evaluating glance down his figure. "I do," he agrees, because
he does, and a hand creeps out of hiding to smooth invisible wrinkles
out of his jacket. "I could have done without the accessories though,"
meaning the glitter that is clinging so stubbornly to the dark fabric.
"You shouldn't worry about the plaid dress. It was a whim. I have many
of them, mostly inconsequential."

For the moment, Cassandra tolerates the petting of her hair, though she does
not look entirely mollified by Cyrus's efforts. She eyes him as if she
is considering beating him until his morale improves. "I believe that I
shall resolve to host more parties," she informs him as lightly as

Tinkerbell smiles slightly, "I wasn't planning on worrying *too* much. Maybe
just a little bit," She concedes with a polite bob of her blond head,
tilting her head and following the motion to brush off glitter. She
seems to find it amusing, anyway.

Cyrus doesn't look entirely pleased by her resolution, but he tries, grinning
at letting his gaze lift to the stars above as if he has them to thank
for this. His hand slides away across her shoulder, pats her there, and
leaves her. "It's nice, getting together. Marking the night as
special." He shifts restlessly, "Having the excuse to celibrate." His
efforts are somewhat less convincing that Apolo's, but his attention
drops back down to Cassandra to see if she is pleased by them.

"Mmhm. Its always good practice to worry a little." But he smiles, politely, to
soften the strange edge of his words. "You'll excuse me for a little
bit?" Apolo's question is pure rhetoric — there's hardly anyone who
would begrudge the absence of a mood like that, and he seems well aware
of it, already moving past her, towards the gardens beyond the party's

Tinkerbell bobs in a slight curtsey again with a polite curve of her lips. "Of
course, Monsieur," She murmurs, and returns to her wall leanings as if
nothing disturbed her.

"It is a perfectly reasonable excuse," Cassandra says a little flippantly, and
then she shakes her head slightly. "And we really ought to get together
more often, but you are ever distracted."

Cyrus barely seems to hear her, but he nods in agreement regardless- He's too
busy watching Apolo turn to depart. There's a step, a full step, in
that direction, before he catches himself and tenses up fully, his jaw
hardening with inwardly-directed fury. "I'm sorry, what was that?" he
shifts her an apologetic smirk. "I guess my mind's been elsewhere

Jules approaches from the Hungtington Circle.

Jules has arrived.

Cyrus approaches from the Hungtington Circle.

Cyrus has arrived.

Jules slips in, all but skulking, she's trying to find another hiding spot.
Yes, indeed she makes a beeline for one of her previous ones.

Cyrus stalks back down the path, after his mysterious departure. His mood seems
to have cooled down, but it certainly hasn't brightened. There's a
bundle of lush, exotic blooms hanging at his side, throttled in his
fist- complete with long, leafy stems and ragged roots with some earth
still clinging to them. He sweeps a glance through- he notes Jule's
movement, but allows her to hide if it pleases her, and his eyes
continue their search.

Cassandra is making an honest effort not to sulk. To that end, when she spots
Jules, she heads over towards the woman. "Sam says that your singing is
lovely," she offers to open the conversation. "I generally trust him on
that sort of thing."

Caught! Jules turns toward Cassandra when she is intercepted in her search for
a proper hiding place. She glances around to see if perhaps Cassandra
was speaking to someone else. With no luck she smiles softly and says,
"I try my best, signorina, I have been practicing since before I was

Cyrus is headed squarely in Cassandra's direction, also making a fair effort
not to sulk. He prowls up behind her, a bloom brushing the back of
Cassandra's shoulder, and he has a smile waiting for her, should she
turn to greet. A sly look passed over Cassandra's shoulder, in greeting
to Jules.

Apolo returns as well, shaking the shadows off with a roll of his thin
shoulders, so he appears in midstride, halfway across the grassy
clearing. His little sojourn did not seem to involve a trip to the
drycleaners; he sparkles dimly in the available light.

Apolo has arrived.

"Many of us cling to the things that we loved in life," Cassandra says
pleasantly to Jules, ever gracious. "Perhaps you would be willing to
perform for us later?" She moves slightly so that she can look over her
shoulder at Cyrus, and she smiles at him gently. The lily that Apolo
gave her earlier is tucked behind her ear.

Jules glances between Cyrus and Cassandra, not having caught sight of Apolo
again just yet. She gives a nod of her head, "Of course, signorina, any
time you like. Just let me know what you would like me to perform."

Cyrus snarls defeatedly at the lily, but nonetheless shoves the bundle of
flowers towards the little Malkavian's chest. A lily is quite modest
and chaste, while his are hothouse blooms in obscene reds and plum
hues. Some potting soil shakes free from a tendril of roots- It would
be a pity if she were to get any dirt on her fine dress. "Sorry about
earlier," he grumbles, his smile softening it somewhat, "that was rude."

Apolo finds himself already on a trajectory towards the others before the group
has even resolved itself. He slows, just a bit, but remains on course,
coming around the lot of them from the side, his hands shoved deep in
his pockets.

"All is forgiven," Cassandra offers blithely to Cyrus as she takes the flowers,
whether or not she intends her words or not. "These are lovely." She
says nothing about how much of the gardens have been torn up already
for this party. "Jules and I were just discussing her singing voice,
Cyrus. Have you ever heard her perform?"

Did Jules just take a small creeping step back from the group? Possibly. The
little Italian woman folds her hands behind her back and smiles a bit
inanely onto Cassandra and Cyrus.

Now that he is unburdered, Cyrus shifts his stance to something more casual,
and it reflects in his eyes as he looks to Jules. "Can't say I've had
the pleasure." There's a tensing at the corner of his eyes as he
notices Apolo, and it challenges his smile, but resolutely he returns
his attention to Jules: "Let's have a song."

"Leaving so soon?" Apolo murmurs the question to Jules as he cuts behind her,
shutting off her means of escape. "It would be a pity. For you. My
family's parties are … talked about for a long time." There's teeth
in his smile, and its not his fault if it comes off a bit cruel around
the edges. Really. She only has to tolerate it for a breath; the
Malkavian is still moving, ending up drawing to stop on the other side
of Cyrus, so the cowboy is between him and his child.

"Thus far, the night has been fairly quiet," Cassandra says with a little
smile, still clutching her brightly colored flowers. "All things

Jules starts to show some of her unease on the outside when Apolo cuts behind
her. She stutters softly, "O-o-of cou-course not, Do-don Apolo." She
glances toward Cyrus and then toward Cassandra and swallows faintly.
The woman asks, "Wh-what son-song would you li-like?"

Cyrus scratches at his jaw. As a Toreador, he should be familiar with Opera,
but it seems she stumbled into another one of his weak spots, and he
squints in puzzlement. He tosses a look to Apolo, as if he could find
the answer there, but all it stirs is another restless shift of his
shoulders, as if she's struggling to find his place. "Let's hear your
favorite," he decides at last, with an upward nod. "Whatever feels

Apolo strokes his fingers over his tie idly, using it as a substitute for his
hair, though from the expression that crosses his face, the tactile
change isn't as soothing. A glance is exchanged with the cowboy, a
couple of degrees above cool, but he has no suggestions either. So its
poor Jules who has to shoulder the burden of every aspect of her
impromptu performance — neither of the men seem to be any help at all.

"Sing something pretty," Cassandra says lightly, with all the carelessness of a
hostess who is pretending to be helpful.

Jules glances between the three people infront of her and fidgets with her
dress a moment. A small nod is given and she says, "I.. c-could sing
Ave.. Maria.."

Cyrus flicks her an encouraging smile, though there's soft grunt to dismiss her
suggestion. "Not that," he decides, unhelpfully, "Too solemn." His arms
fold loosely as he considers her. "This is supposed to be a party.
Choose something with a bit more fire to it."

Apolo lets the Roses sort it out. His attention strays unfaithfully, skimming
across to his child, so that he can favor her with a more pleasant
twitch of his lips, and then on again, over the party. It lingers, here
and there, usually over nothing remarkable, and lands, finally, on the
path that leads here.

Cassandra offers her sire a fond little smile, pleased with her existence and
his momentary attention. She glances down to the flowers she's holding
and makes a surreptitious effort to trim them slightly so that there is
less risk of them soiling her dress.

Jules bites at her lower lip and looks around, she seems a little lost. The
woman suggests, "Bella nice, che d'amore?"

Olivia approaches from the Hungtington Circle.

Olivia has arrived.

Ali approaches from the Hungtington Circle.

Ali has arrived.

Jules is standing infront of Cassandra, Cyrus, and Apolo- who are all sending
next to each other in that order. She's fidgeting and looks rather put
on the spot, and more than a little terrified of the three vampires
before her.

Rosalind approaches from the Hungtington Circle.

Rosalind has arrived.

Jules is standing infront of Cassandra, Cyrus, and Apolo- who are all sending
next to each other in that order. She's fidgeting and looks rather put
on the spot, and more than a little terrified of the three vampires
before her. (Reset)

Cyrus sweeps a mild look down the length of her. "Yeah," he smirks, "that
sounds pretty." And that's all the encouragement she's going to get.
Jules is reluctantly entertaining an audiance: It seems like the three
of them are rattling the little bird's cage and expecting a song. His
arms loosely folded, Cyrus leans back to follow Apolo's gaze as it
stays to the path, frowing with some concern.

As they enter, the contrast between Ali and Olivia is striking: The one tall,
statuesque, smouldering; the other small, soft, and fair. Olivia laughs
a bright sound and touches Ali on the arm ever so lightly, her eyes
flicking across the party locale. Attendance noted. "Oh, my dear,
you'll be the death of me yet," she purrs.

The tall Colombian laughs and let's the expression linger on her lips. "It's
fun every time." she murmurs to the smaller woman. Her eyes flash
briefly to the place where Olivia's fingertips lay upon her arm and her
smile stretches, faintly. "Promises, I know.. " Ali's attention lifts
to survey the other attendees and she offers the room a broad smile.
"Shall we?" she inquires to Olivia.

Rosalind's formal-wear is set more in the jewels that ring her neck then in the
fine midnight blue suit that she wears with a confident grace. She
strides slowly through the gardens, following a lit trail. There's no
hurry to her walk, nor anything lazy about her stroll. Her gaze drifts
from attendee to attendee with a light interest.

Apolo is certainly part of that ring around Jules, though he isn't smiling, so
maybe he's enjoying the game about as much as she is. He's not looking
at her though; his gaze was fixed, expectant, on the path that leads
into the party even before the new arrivals showed their faces. A bob
of his dark head agrees with nothing said aloud, satisfied. The
Malkavian is in no hurry to look away. They each get the once over,

With a lily in her hair and a fistful of hothouse blooms in her hair, one might
think Cassandra was going for a natural look. But as she moves to note
the new arrivals, the magnificent sapphire that she wears is revealed.
Ever the gracious hostess, she moves to greet Ali and Olivia with warm
smiles. "Good evening, ladies. You both look lovely. Quite lovely."

Cyrus straightens up at returns his attention to Jules, though the tension is
plain in his form, all hard, straight lines where there had previously
been a casual slant. He claws at the arm of his coat, as if something
itches him and he's unwilling to break decorum to deal with it.

Jules stares back at Cyrus for several moments with an outright terrified
expression on her face now that the party seems to be filling up. She
manages to whisper softly, "I-I-I'll s-s-start wh-whenever you-you're

Olivia's eyes harden, her smile sharpens daggerlike, as she drags another long
appraising look across the already-assembled. "Let's do." The little
woman slides her grip around Ali's forearm the way she might on a fine
gentleman's. "I trust you'll squire me through the dangerous wilds
we're about to navigate. Oh, Cassandra!" she exclaims, raising her
voice and extending her free hand to their hostess as they approach.
"You are too kind! You look a queen tonight! Fit to preside over us
all, no doubt about it. Absolutely stunning. You *must* give me the
name of your jeweler, you must!" Poor Jules is, for the moment at
least, left to fend for herself with the men.

Rosalind's fingers drift up to her sapphire necklace and trail along the gold
edging. Slowing to a stop, she raises a slim brow to eye the pair
closest to her. The gold-flecked gaze briefly studies Olivia and Ali
before she peers over at the gathering around Jules. Her chin rises as
she seems a touch more 'above all this', whatever 'this' may be. "Poor
dear." The woman says with golden, Spanish-accented voice.

"Wilds?" One of Ali's brows curls a dark arch over her eye and she looks from
Olivia to the group, perhaps wondering what dangerous wilds there could
be hidden amongst the gathering of elegance. She leads the small
Toreador in, attention to taking steps small enough not to make the
pairing any more awkward, while she looks Apolo over with equal,
curious attention. "Seneschal- a fine evening. Your childe has out done
herself once again.", she greets simply. There seems a care taken- as
if looking to see which way the wind will turn. Briefly, she looks
toward Cassandra, and inclines her head.

Apolo brushes his fingers down the satin of his tie. Now that Cassie has
trotted into his field of vision, the intensity he's regarding the new
arrivals with seems broken, like her appearance reminds him there are
other people around. And Ali's greeting cuts in to rescue him.
"Seneschal," offering the title back to her, letting it float across
the party rather than remove himself from the trio he's a part of.
"Thank you. Though all praise is Cassie's. My only part is showing up
decently dressed."

"I fear I cannot tell you, for the necklace was a gift, bestowed by my own
sire. I'm certain he'd be delighted to hear you praise his taste so
finely," Cassandra offers with charming, blithe warmth. She touches the
incredible sapphire, or really, brushes her hand nearby it. She
wouldn't want to fingerprint it. "And you look charming," she says to
Apolo. "And Olivia adores your taste in jewelry."

Cyrus is starting to lose his patience, still holding some kindness in his
smile, though his eyes begin to narrow. Poor Jules, indeed. "Get on
with it," he suggests. The approach of the women, and Olivia's call,
jostles him aside and leaves him biting back a snarl before he turns to
greet them. He manages a smile, barely concealing its blades. "Olivia.
Seneschal." The last word is suffered with distaste.

Jules bites at her lower lip and looks around, a small sound escapes her lips a
bit like a whimper. A moment later she blurts, "I'm very sorry I my
go." Her accent thicker, far more italian and possibly a little hard to
understand. She then picks up her skirt and tries to race for the door.

"Much mine." counters Ali to Apolo, chuckling. Then, there are words again and
they're directed to her. The edge of her jaw flexes in a display of
annoyance that doesn't fit her dress- that doesn't fit the elegance she
somehow carries now, if not usual. She turns to look at Cyrus and the
distaste with which he spoke is mirrored in her response. "Cyrus. Are
you acting the guard tonight or the invitee?"

Quagmire enters the gardens just after Jules' departure. The tiny thing
meanders his way to a wall, simply listening to the voices around it.

"Oh, did my Lord Apolo select it personally?" Olivia inquires of Cassandra with
her usual fluttering curiosity. "How charming, a gentleman who
remembers to buy you jewelry! And with such discriminating taste as he
is known to have, I shouldn't wonder, an eye to unwavering quality."
She winks at Cassie for the obvious compliment to the hostess. Her
attention shifts slightly as Jules flees, but whatever she was going to
say with that indrawn breath transfers to Ali. "My goodness, darling!"
Those manicured fingertips dig into the taller woman's flesh, just a
light touch of the reins. "Such questions! He looks so very dashing
tonight, let's not spoil it. He's put more effort into dressing well
tonight, more than I've ever seen. Is his newfound taste for fashion a
recent development, one wonders?" She is full of compliments tonight,
showering on everyone it seems.

Were Apolo the overwhelming threat Jules seems to think he is, he probably
would have stopped her before she could flee completely. But he lets
her go with nothing more than a curious glance at her departing form
and bemused smile, which clearly means he's nothing more than a
pussycat in a really expensive tux. Truly. Poor Jules is left to leave
unmolested, his gaze trailing her until her path brings it back around
to the others.

Will approaches from the Hungtington Circle.

Will has arrived.

"Seneschal," Cassandra says to Ali. "Cyrus is a guest. Look, he has even been
so kind as to provide me with flowers." She holds out the brightly
colored hothouse blooms for the woman to see; they are lovely but
somewhat at odds with her simple elegance tonight. "We're all having
such a lovely time." She says it convincingly, like she means it, for
she is certainly not oblivious to the tension.

Cyrus scoffs at the question, his eyes slow to meet Ali's. He tries not to
sound defensive. Perhaps a smile will sell it, but his charm never
seems to hold true when regarding the Brujah. "I am a guest, tonight,"
he sweeps open his coat, shows no weapons, two empty palms, in what
seems to be a very practiced gesture, "That's all." But some gravity
remains on the woman, not quite a threat or a challenge, but a warning
at least, slipped in beneath the otherwise innocent once-over he gives
her: "You look pretty tonight." And that knavish smile he flashes her
is entirely genuine.

Watching the fleeing Toreador, Rosalind casts a simply amused glance at the
girl, which is also fleeting. As easily as the amusement enters her
expression, it escapes, leaving an empty intrigue in each glance. She
looks to the curiosity which is Quagmire, studying his pink bow from
where she pristinely stands with her head held high.

Della approaches from the Hungtington Circle.

Della has arrived.

Quagmire notices Rosalind's glance and tilts his head. "El-oh there." He says,
with a deep bow. The small thing studies Rosalind closely for a moment
as if trying to see what she is up to.

There's enough people who know him here to see that the physical distance
Apolo's holding himself to is unusual. He is normally uncaring of such
things, trodding into other people's personal spaces, fondling their
persons, crowding them as his whims take him. Tonight is different; the
Seneschal maintains a careful cushion of space about his form, so that
the gesture it takes to reach out and touch his childe's arm, above her
elbow, is near heroic. The smile he gives her is cut from much the same
cloth; both fade easily. "It is a very daring dress, Ali," the
Malkavian agrees.

Between the half-moon leaving 'guidance' Olivia gives her and the fact she's
still locked eye to eye with Cyrus, Ali doesn't notice Jules flight.
The knavish grin marks not an etch on Ali's golem-like height and she
murmurs, "Indeed." Perhaps she would share the man's movement, were it
not blindingly obvious from her dress that she carries nothing but the
Toreador at her side. She exhales, then nods toward Olivia before
manners demand she address Cassandra- though when Ali has used this
level of etiquette would require memory back to the last 'party'. She
offers Cass a warm smile, then a nod and her explanation. "Cassandra,
always enchanted. It was only an honest inquiry - without a uniform, or
an on/off duty sign, it's hard to tell. Thank you both for clearing it
up." Ali deigns a nod to those who did, then comments to Apolo. "The
sales woman assured me it made quite the statement."

Will walks up the path with Della, dressed in a simple black suit and carrying
neither staff nor satchel. To her, he says, "I think I hear them up
this way.. oh.." he cuts off the explanation when he comes in sight of
the others. "There we are," he says to Della with a small smile. He
looks about at the others to get his bearings and see who all is in

Della has one of her arms looped around Will's and a pretty smile plastered
across her lips. She tilts her head toward him and nods. She lowers her
voice to murmur to him, "So we are." Her blue eyes shift toward the
gathered for a moment and then demurely find the ground to focus upon.

Olivia coos with saccharine sincerity, "And what a fine statement it makes. How
I envy your stature!" She pats Ali's minorly abused forearm where it
rests in her grasp. "You lend every ensemble such panache with your
very presence. We lesser lights can only huddle close and try to steal
your secrets!" The bubbly Toreador giggles and her eyes sweep across
the approach as more people make their way toward the party.
"Cassandra, I see several unfamiliar souls off yonder," she murmurs.
"Do you know them?"

Rosalind steps towards a leafy green plant after casting her gold-flecked gaze
away from Quagmire. In her comfortable silence, she remains at ease in
her observations which are neither rude nor overly obvious. As Will and
Della pass by, she formally nods her head in their direction before
looking towards a flowering stalk of something Australian.

"That is Will, one of the Santa Monica Tremere. I am not familiar with his
companion, but I would presume that she is professionally associated
with him," Cassandra replies pleasantly to Olivia, eyeing Will and
Della. "I'm sure if you desired, I could introduce you to them." She is
very firmly being the good hostess. She lifts her free hand to touch
Apolo's hand on her arm in a slightly comforting sort of way, almost

Cyrus seems to accept this all with a low, contemplative growl, but his gaze is
already drifting tirely past them, to the gardens, tensing and shifting
evasively as random comments distract and jab at him. His gaze passes
over the strangers, but they fail to snag his curiousity, something
keeps dragging him back to Olivia, and her date. While his sire is
distracted, he settles a scowl there.

Ali tilts her head and chuckles toward Olivia. "Mmhmm." replies the woman,
sounding far from convinced, but humored nonetheless. To Olivia's query
she adds, "Or the woman who just went dashing off as if the very hounds
of Hell were chasing her?"

Apolo shifts his grip to pluck one of the flowers from Cassie's bouquet.
Absently, the Malkavian sets about denuding it, methodically stripping
the petals from the bloom, one after another, to litter the ground
around his feet. "That is another of Olivia's clanmates. Jules,
recently arrived, rumored to be a singer, proved only to have a very
delicate constitution."

Will spies Cassandra, and leads Della over to her. When he reaches an
appropriately nearby distance, he releases the woman's arm and bows
formally at the waist to the hostess of the party. "Good evening,
Warden Smith, and my apologies for arriving so late in the night."

Della does what seems naturally, she curtsies when Will bows, and then she
straightens up. But she smiles and says nothing, her gaze focusing on
Cassandra's feet.

"Ah, don't you trouble about it," Olivia murmurs to Cassandra. "I'm sure
introductions will roll 'round if they become necessary." As Will and
Della make their greetings to the hostess, Olivia allows her attention
to wander. "Hmm, poor girl," she muses absently at Apolo's comment on
the fled. "And we're all having such a nice time, shame she should miss
it. There's nothing to be frightened of here."

"Oh, think nothing of it. It's been a very pleasant evening, and I'm delighted
that you could join us," Cassandra offers quite amicably to Will with a
little nod. "Do join us."

A light gaze settles on Della and the first hint of a frown passes Ali's lips,
then dissolves. Without a word to the woman, she exhales a slight
breath and focuses first on Olivia, then the rest of the gathering
though the perceptive might infer she knows Della. "She did look to be
in a terrible way; these things have that effect on some, I've heard."
Not Ali though, never. She finds a smile and continues, addressing
Cassandra. "Even worth the formality, Cass." Ali laughs- her tone
oh-so-casual and she winks at the hostess.

Will straightens and then repeats the gesture to Apolo. "And Seneschal, a
pleasure." Again with the standing upright. "I hope everyone's been
enjoying the evening, it's such a nice night." Small-talk from the
Tremere, and it doesn't involve astral signs from expanded planes of
consciousness. He smiles, seeming oblivious to whatever turmoil might
or might not be affecting others.

Cyrus is still watching her as Olivia's comment calls up a subtle twist of a
smile. A scoff of laughter frees the breath that he's been holding for
much-too-long, and he looks away at last, up towards the sky. "Nothing
at all," he agrees, his attention skimming back down across more
earthly things. Movement catches his eye, he watches as Apolo picks
apart the flowers he took such care to uproot. The red petal is an easy
beacon for his to follow as it falls, all the way down to the earth.
And he seems somewhat calmer now that his attention has made that

Quagmire notices he's been left to his own devices. The perfect place for the
small thing. It starts to chew on its shoes again as if uncomfortable
with being dressed up.

Though Rosalind appears to be the sort to hold herself competently in a
boardroom, this is a different story. The elegant woman remains
introspective as she remains more or less on the path instead of in the
wilds of the evening's regal affairs. She remains satisfied in her
silence looking to those of higher status before moving her gaze
towards the shadowy gardens.

Della follows Will's lead and curtsies to Apolo when Will bows. She straightens
up a moment later and continues to stair at the ground. And she is most
certainly /pointedly/ even, not noticing that Ali is there.

Tinkerbell and her red dress return from wherever they went. "Tsk, your poor
shoes," She informs Quagmire as she approaches, a small smile on her
face. She remains more or less unobtrusive amongst the other guests -
or tries to anyway.

Quagmire immediately skitters to Tinkerbell's side, keeping with her at all
times. "Hello. This party's um. Interesting. You wanna sit at my wall
with me?"

"Hello, Will," Apolo says, decisively doing away with the formality of titles.
"Glad you could make it. Who's your date?" More petals fall, each
removed in a familiar, childlike rhythm.

Will motions to Della with his left hand. "This is Della. I thought she might
like a chance to get out of the office for the evening," he offers a
smile to Della, then turns it toward Apolo.

Della lifts her gaze up from the ground to smile prettily toward Apolo for a
moment, but she wasn't spoken to directly so she doesn't speak. Her
blue gaze returns to the ground.

Tinkerbell smiles at Quagmire, not seem to mind the hanger-on. She chuckles
softly. "Well, I'd hate to be rude and not greet the guests." She
murmurs with a bat of her lashes. She smiles at the Noferatu, though.
"You can come, if you like."

"Why look!" Cassandra says. "It's nearly midnight. We ought to count down to
the new year. Everyone get ready!" She smiles, interrupting things

Quagmire grunts "Sure." He says, keeping at Tinkerbell's side like a smelly

Cyrus watches the petals pile up on the ground, his expression distant at
first, then thoughtful, his brow troubled and teeth grinding before he
catches himself- Cassie calls his attention, and he shrugs forth as
everyone gathers 'round.

"Charmed," the Seneschal says mildly, being polite for the ten seconds it takes
to include Della in the conversation. He might have had more to add
there, but his childe gets in her announcement first, and Apolo shuts
his mouth with a surprised click. It -is- a New Year's party, but the
countdown portion of it seems to have caught him unawares. "Oh,"
inelegantly, and a considering gaze is cast over the party goers.

Ali glances at her wrist. She never wears a watch, which makes the motion
somewhat curious since she most definitely isn't wearing one now. Her
attention drifts to Della, then away. Purposefully. There's Cassandra,
saving everyone again, and Ali finds a smile for the hostess. "Count?"
For a moment, she looks almost confused, then places the reference.
"Oh, si. Verdad. Usually I'm having dinner right now, so I always miss
the counting."

"Indeed, nothing to be frightened of," Olivia repeats to Cyrus and Ali.
"We're—" Cassandra's pronouncement interrupts her, but she doesn't
look cross about it. Instead she grins to herself. Sharply. She mutters
something under her breath.

Rosalind attention snaps towards Cassandra when she announces the countdown as
though just remembering what tonight exactly is. She then starts to
grin with some sort of amusement, looking towards Tinkerbell with an
impishness to her gaze. The graceful woman gestures lightly and
meaningful towards the young Brujah for her to come on over.

Tinkerbell pauses for a moment with a chuckle at Quagmire, "Oop, Later," She
shrugs, and glances over at Cassandra to nod at her, then is distracted
by Rosalind. She tilts her head curiously, obviously not recognizing
the woman, and decides to meander over, because she's curious.

Will chuckles quietly at something, then turns his attention to Cassandra. "I
see we were just in time.." he says, rather passively, to no one in

The countdown starts at fifteen, just so that everyone can join in by the time
ten is reached. And then it's all the way down to one. After that,
fireworks can be heard in the distance and seen closer to the horizon.
They're not being fired here, but the city is celebrating the new year,

Della's gaze toss lift upward at the sound of fireworks, a small look of awe
settling over her face as she sees the bright blooming flowers in the
sky. A hand lifts to brush back one of her ringlets as she watches them.

The thought, if it could even be called that, passes across Ali's face with all
the obviousness of a child caught with cookie crumbs and an empty
cookie jar. Her first few words to Olivia are muffled, having been held
back by the tips of her fangs, and she brings one hand up to her mouth
and laughs as she joins in the middle bit of counting - in spanish, of
course. As the noise becomes a tumult and the fireworks explode
overhead she chuckles and leans down to murmur something to Olivia.

Did he roll his eyes? He might have, but the gesture is lost when Apolo glances
away from the others, and puts a deliberate bit of space between
himself and the Ali-Cassandra-Olivia trio by stepping backwards. He
does not join in the counting, not even to keep track by finishing off
the flower he'd started. The gesture brings him back in line with
Cyrus, where he started out before the greetings and hey theres and
hi's, smiling wryly at nothing, and watching the sky.

Will looks up at the sky face almost a mask, with just the corners of his mouth
turned upwards. He starts to lean over to speak with the girl on his
arm, but seems to think better of it, giving her a moment of peace.

"You look familiar; You're from San Francisco, are you not?" Rosalind says in
honey and whiskey'd voice which is steeped in a bold leisure. She holds
herself with formality, though she is at ease as her plump, painted
lips curl into a grin directed to Tink. "You look absolutely perfect

Tinkerbell just blinks up at Rosalind, still obviously puzzled. She also seems
mildly worried that the woman is talking to her - so much so that she
also sort of forgets to count down with everyone else. She does smile,
however, and look pleasant, as she usually does - "Yes … and Thank
you … I'm afraid you have me at a disadvantage…"

Della's gaze remains on the sky for several long moments, blue eyes wide and
glossy with awe for the fireworks on the horizon. Eventually her gaze
drops back down to the ground, and the awed expression fades to that
pretty, nigh-vacant smile.

Cassandra seems perfectly content with the idea that no one has been bitten
tonight, and she brings the flowers she has in hand up to her face, to
inhale their scent.

Cyrus sidles up, nearer to Apolo now, since this allows him to keep a watch on
the curious business between Ali and his sire. Countdown's make him
uneasy, as evidenced by doomed scowl that settles over him, his gaze
lifting, ready for it, by the time the skys light up and the
explosivion whistle through the air. He coughs something down, knuckles
brushing across his jaw, to conceal it's nature, before he glances
sidelong to Apolo, just a shy edge of a smile for him.

Olivia pats her friend on the arm, still grinning. She chuckles and leans in
close to reply. Even as she speaks, her gaze follows the other
Seneschal with hooded lids. Perhaps no one will notice at this busy

Ali does; though her expression remains as it is, her gaze darts to follow
Olivia's and as the woman whispers to her she pulls away a hair. Low
toned, she replies as she draws her hand inward to smooth the front of
her dress.

Will starts looking at people again, once the first few volleys of fireworks
explode, and his attention drifts away. His gaze passes from one person
to the next, just perhaps to get an idea of who's attending. And then
he pauses at Ali, and bows his head to her should she notice him.

Cassandra moves to join Apolo and Cyrus, preferring to be closer to them at the
moment. She eyes them both, almost shyly, and she smiles to herself, a
little twinkle in her eyes.

"A disadvantage? I do not believe so; Your name escaped me years ago, if
indeed, you are of that memory of mine." Rosalind continues to focus on
Tink, though her attention did drift towards those counting, or not
counting, down. Her hand drops lightly from toying with the jewels
about her neck in order to dust invisible lint from her finely tailored
jacket. "Rosalind. My closer ..associates..call me Rosie." Again, she
grins, though this time a touch more slyly with a tempered fire in her

Della leans into Will and asks him a question it seems, leaning in to whisper
to him.

Apolo slides his gaze up at the cowboy, meeting his eyes sidelong. The smile
the other man offers seems infectious; the Seneschal finally finds one
of his own to answer with, the most genuine expression he's managed all
night. Shaking his head, Apolo slides over to make room for Cassie, so
that she's arranged at his outside, and leaves a friendly hand on her

Tinkerbell seems sort of confused, stilly. She blinks a few times, "I simply
met taht I don't immediately recognize you as you seem to have caught
me…" She chuckles, amused somehow, "But I suppose you may remember
me." She smiles, and looks up over the fireworks. "Nice to meet you …
again … I suppose, Rosalind."

Will can't escape laughing at the question put to him, but he manages to keep
it from being either loud or long. He whispers to Della, "No, no,
that's quite alright, thanks."

Della points toward someone that has a few of the new years hats in their
hands, perhaps a server of some sort. She all but whines at him, "But
they have glitter on them, Will. /They glitter/."

With a sharply drawn breath, Olivia turns to Cassandra. "Well! It has certainly
been a diverting evening, Cassandra, and I do thank you for the lovely
time. You really must come to see my shoes sometime. Perhaps later this
week?" Her intention to depart is clear, though her smile remains
bright and sweet.

Cassandra seems unwilling to leave Apolo just yet, but she does turn her head
to smile at Olivia. "Perhaps so," she agrees brightly. "Thank you for
the invitation. I hope you have enjoyed the party."

Content with that small victory, Cyrus yeilds a sigh and adjusts his coat,
freeing his gaze lift to the sky again, watching the celebretory bursts
of light and color until they are exhausted. It's enough to make him to
forget himself for a moment.

"Caught you?" Rosalind's dulcet voice lowers as a tinged of a purr enters her
voice and reflects either playfully or predatorily in her eyes as she
looks to Tink. She fusses barely with the edge of her jacket,
straightening it after brushing the silk shirt with the back of her
hand. She continues to speak after a glance skywards towards a trailing
burst of gold and violet sparks.

Ali lets her attention settle again on Olivia and watches, elegantly, searching
the interactions that take place between her and Cassandra, then
shifting to Apolo and Cyrus. Eventually, she lets her eyes glide back
to Olivia. She is, distinctly, appraising all.

"Caught me in my ignorance, that is." Tinkerbell offers another little
sheepish smile, apparently not all that ashamed of not knowing who
Rosalind is, only mildly apologetic because it's polite to be.

Rosalind whispers to Tinkerbell, "My friend, if I had caught you, we would be
far gone from here enjoying ourselves with a dinner engagement or two."

Will sort of -looks- at Della, over the rims of his glasses. Somewhere around
'patient disbelief.' "Glitter, hm? Please, by all means, then."

Olivia continues, "Oh yes, very much so. Have a lovely evening!" As she turns
to go, she slips her smile up to Ali. "I would hate to disturb your
evening, my dear. Shall I take a taxi?"

Della beams at Will, giving for the first time tonight a genuine smile. She
gives a nod of her head and then breaks off from his side. Making her
way across the gardens to get one of those party hats.

"Good night, Olivia." Apolo manages some of that suddenly generous smile for
the Rose. His attention is fleeting though, drawn to Ali and her
curious inspection, watching, watching, giving his own appraisal of his
opposite number. Absently, his fingers trace a path up and down
Cassie's arm.

Cassandra turns slightly so that she can smile adoringly at Apolo. She leans in
just enough to tenderly press a kiss to his shoulder. It's a very fond,
very intimate sort of gesture. And then she looks away again, out over
the party, to offer pretty smiles to others.

"No, no." Ali shakes her head, snapped back into conversation by the inquiry.
"I have a dinner date t'get to. I'll be glad t'see you home." A hint of
her accent escapes; it had been so well controlled, but in the moment
it leaks out like the first drop of blood from a pin prick wound. She
turns delicately to meet Cassandra's gaze. "A beautiful party, Cass. I
apologize for bein' here so short; I hope you understand." Her gaze
swings to Apolo and she bows her head. "Buenos noches, Senor. Our dance
will have to wait for another time?"

Della tosses her first glance toward Ali when she's away from Will's side
retrieving that glittery party hat. Her blue gaze dances over the
Latina for a moment before she takes the hat and turns to head back to

Apolo dips his chin in acknowledgment, spilling out his answer in their
familiar language.

Della murmurs something under her breath in Spanish.

Ali answers something back to Apolo, somber, then fancies a smile and continues.

When Cyrus's attention returns to earth, it's to say his farewells to Olivia,
but he seems uncertain of how to manage that- Even a smile seems too
daring, all things considered. "Olivia. Take care." Pale words,
drained. His jaw hardens before he ties again. "Always a pleasure."
Still no smile, its hard to make that sound sincere, so he admits
defeat with a sore shrug of his shoulder, and tosses a warning glower
at Apolo when the start up with the Spanish. They're at it again.

Will's gaze flicks from one partygoer to the next while they converse in
Spanish, and then settles on Della as she mutters.

Della returns to Will's side and she holds out the glittery party hat to him,
with that pretty vacant smile upon her face.

Cassandra offers her own cheerful goodbye to the tall Seneshal, along with a
little wave and a smile. But she stays cozy near Apolo.

Olivia must not have heard Apolo's farewell or Cyrus's; after all, she is
already working her way down the path toward the exit. Perhaps she was
already too far to hear, lost in plans for the rest of the evening.
Perhaps the conversations in Spanish have drowned them out.

'They' are not at 'it' overly long. Ali's words seem to be the parting shot,
the Malkavian nodding to something she says, and though the tone has
switched to a lighter mood, his expression has been drug down by
gravity. "Yes," smoothly switching to english. "Happy New Year."

Will offers Della a small smile, then. "Please, you can hang onto it for now,
if you like," he says, indicating the hat. He turns his attention back
towards the others, but obviously his Spanish skills aren't enough up
to par to actually even consider joining in on the conversation.

Ali shows another smile to Cassandra. "If only it were as important as it
pretends to be. Have a wonderful night, Cass." And with that, Ali turns
and stretches her long legs in a slow walk toward the door - the first
step reminds her that short steps are better and heels are no friend to
hurry. She is exiting behind Olivia; if by design or coincidence is
anyone's guess.

Olivia walks back to the Circle.

Olivia has left.

"You're not ignorant at all; I could be mistaken." Rosalind says softly to Tink
before offering her an alluring smile. "We will catch up over dinner
one night soon?" The refined woman watches the path as people walk by
to leave the party before turning once again to Tink. "I would be most
honored and will bring a treat."

Tinkerbell chuckles softly. "I would be glad to share dinner sometime," She
murmurs with a polite bat of her lashes, bobbing into a slight curtsey
at Rosalind for saftey's sake.

Ali walks back to the Circle.

Ali has left.

Apolo leans into his childe and presses a kiss to her temple, fleeting. "I need
to find Sam, Cassie. It was lovely for you to host." Ah, typical, the
fireworks are over and Apolo's anxious to depart, as fickle as any
lover. There's a glance given to the rest of the guests as he separates
himself from her, nods and bobs, and goodbyes given, and with one aside
of a smile to Cyrus, the Seneschal is going, cutting across the grass
towards the darker parts of the garden.

Della looks between Will and the glittery party hat for a moment, and then
finally she places it upon her head.

Cyrus huffs a sigh of finality, his gaze falling to watch as he scuffs at the
gravel. When it lifts again, and both Olivia and Ali are on teir way
out, there's a resolved calm in his gaze, bold enough to turn back to
the Malkavian and his childe. They're alread on their way out. He nods
in agreement to this. Everyone's survived. Good. He stomps along in
that direction, though its unclear whether or not he follows.

Rosalind's slim brow rises as she considers Tinkerbell's acceptance to dinner.
"Very well, then. I'll contact you about having a solid night of
entertainment." She bows her head towards the young Brujah and smiles
as sweet as the tones of honey that enrich her voice. "It was lovely to
meet you. Until we meet again, be well."

Tinkerbell smiles pleasently. "Quite." She murmurs and glances around
curiously, then just watches Rosalind blankly.

Will seems at least a little amused by the fascination with the party hat, then
watches as people start to leave. "Hm.. so soon after midnight. I
imagine everyone's very busy."

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Original Work is licensed under a CC Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 US License.