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File 153464563882.png - (271.96KB , 700x600 , 1.png )
897839 No. 897839 ID: c1eaac

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single demon in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a spouse.

Or, at least, a friend with benefits.

Hearts Goetia might get NSFW. Or just real weird.
Expand all images
>>
No. 897840 ID: c1eaac
File 153464565308.png - (196.13KB , 700x600 , 2.png )
897840

Your name is Glasya-Labolas (Glas to your friends), and you surely are all of those things. As a child of Eisheth, one of Hell's highest ranking princesses, you made your debut in court ages ago. But it's high time you started looking for someone to go steady with, because your mother sure isn't going to be hooking you up.
>>
No. 897841 ID: c1eaac
File 153464566751.png - (165.59KB , 700x600 , 3.png )
897841

"Mommy's busy with other things," she said, when you asked about your marital status, and if she'd be finding an engagement for you. "Why don't you go on to court and see if you like anyone there?"

She always seems to be busy with other things. Then again, you are a middle child of fifty or so kids. There's a lot of other things for her to be busy with.
>>
No. 897842 ID: c1eaac
File 153464568068.png - (121.74KB , 700x600 , 4.png )
897842

So here you are, at court, in Satan's palace. Scoping out the situation. Most of the people here know you by reputation only - you've made your debut, sure, but they all run in their own tight social circles. Which means you're going to have to start putting yourself out there, to see who's single or not.

Off the top of your head, you recognize Foxglove, a recently widowed noble, passing by you on their way to get another glass of champagne. There's Ornias, a flighty sort of duchess, eating a plate of sweets and gossiping to stoic Lord Camio, their childhood friend. And on the far end of the room, Duke Eligos, Ornias's bookish cousin, entertaining a tall, slick-looking demon who you recognize only because he holds the estate that neighbors your mother's. Jasper Abbadon. You've been advised to avoid him.

Who will you approach first for conversation (or, perhaps, a dance)?
>>
No. 897844 ID: bd5c42

People we've been told to avoid are always the best company.

Let's talk to Jasper.
>>
No. 897845 ID: 270774

of course my immediate instinct is we should go for the person everyone says we should stay away from, but like, most importantly: what's your type?
>>
No. 897847 ID: 70df1e

Ornias and Camio look busy, and if Foxglove just lost their husband, they might be mourning? So lets go meet Eligos and Jasper first. If nothing else, we might get some good gossip out of it that we can pass along to the others if it doesn't work out.
>>
No. 897848 ID: 90138c

Can't go wrong with someone bookish.

Duke Eligos might make for good conversation, at the very least.
>>
No. 897852 ID: 3cd2fa

Talk to Ornias, see if you can get the goss on Jasper to work out whether he's the good time bad news or the bad time bad news
>>
No. 897858 ID: 038d01

TALK. TO. JASPER. And Eligos (it would be rude to ignore him)
>>
No. 897863 ID: c1eaac
File 153464889830.png - (206.16KB , 700x600 , 5.png )
897863

>What's your type?

You're...not really sure what your type is, honestly. Some days it's mischievous duchesses who will taunt you for the slightest slip in courtly manners, and some days it's rigid soldiers with a heart of gold. Some days it's fun loving young shopkeepers, and some days it's con artists with a gap-toothed grin.

You read a lot of romance novels in your spare time. Honestly, pretty much anyone could sweep you off your feet, under the right circumstances.
>>
No. 897864 ID: c1eaac
File 153464891537.png - (204.58KB , 700x600 , 6.png )
897864

You make your way over to Jasper and Eligos, lingering several steps away as you try and think of a way to politely butt in on their conversation. Eligos saves you the trouble, noticing your presence and turning to greet you.

"Ah, Glasya-Labolas!" he says, warm and gentlemanly. You're surprised - almost speechless - that he's remembered your name. "What a pleasant surprise. You haven't been to court in an age."

Because of your mother's status, it's almost insolent for a duke to address you so familiarly, and you could chide him for it, if you liked.. But Eligos's eyes are very clearly communicating that he needs rescue from this conversation - rescue you might be able to provide.
>>
No. 897868 ID: 70df1e

Help Eligos. We're either saving him from the worst conversation ever, or Jasper really is as bad as everyone says. Can't hurt to help out. At the very least, we'll make a friend! Maybe more, if we're lucky.
>>
No. 897872 ID: 51d5a1

The man looks like someone that would drop kick a aligattor for you. Help him!
>>
No. 897877 ID: 038d01

hm. Known for fooling around with other peoples servants? I don't know about that.

I mean technically you'd be helping him by engaging in conversation with Jasper, and thus allowing him to slip away.
>>
No. 897889 ID: 2e3701

Save him!
>>
No. 897908 ID: bd5c42

The person talking to Jasper seems like as good a source as any for the hot gossip. Let's rescue the poor sap.
>>
No. 897938 ID: 270774

do chide him for his familiarity, but like, flirtatiously
>>
No. 897941 ID: dbf422

>>897938
Like, eyelash batting and a teasing tone.
>>
No. 897946 ID: 4f1cbc

>>897864
Rescue him from the conversation. Explain you need to talk to him about something, if possible, a subject or matter on which Jasper would not want to stick around for.
>>
No. 897961 ID: c1eaac
File 153469992463.png - (241.06KB , 700x600 , 7.png )
897961

"No titles? How forward of you, Eligos," you say, teasing him with a smile. He's friends with a few of your half-siblings, so you'd never be genuinely offended by the familiarity. "You'll be in trouble when my mother hears of this."

"Oh, it can be our little secret," he replies, winking. Conversationally, he's much less uptight than he looks. Eligos has sort of a reputation for being a gentleman among demons, which is really saying something, considering...well, considering that you're demons.
>>
No. 897962 ID: c1eaac
File 153469993462.png - (197.18KB , 700x600 , 8.png )
897962

"Speaking of my family, actually," you say, figuring it's as good a segue as any into rescuing him from his other conversation, "I heard that you and my half-brother -"

"Oh, please, no more boring talk about court drama," a voice from behind Eligos says.

And there he is. Jasper Abbadon. Dressed to the nines despite being a relatively low-ranking lord, flashing you a smile that's all teeth.

"Hello," he says, "I don't believe we've met."
>>
No. 897964 ID: c1eaac


Hearts Goetia now has a discussion thread! https://tgchan.org/kusaba/questdis/res/124957.html

>>
No. 897965 ID: 51d5a1

Evil. Get away.
>>
No. 897969 ID: 70df1e

abort mission abort mission grab eligos and skedaddle
>>
No. 897971 ID: 9ff42e

I do /not/ trust that haircut, but you dont want to come off as rude right away. Continue rescuing, lightly probe Jasper?
>>
No. 897976 ID: 4f1cbc

>>897962
Introduce yourself, stay on topic to see if you can get rid of him.
>>
No. 897989 ID: 038d01

stay on course, engage jasper's attention. (to help Eligos ofc)
>>
No. 897996 ID: bd5c42

We're demons, aren't we? What's a little evil between friends?

Anyway, I don't see any reason to burn bridges based on appearance alone. Let's keep it cordial for now, and look for an opening to get rid of him.
>>
No. 898016 ID: c1eaac
File 153471185404.png - (216.35KB , 700x600 , 9.png )
898016

Something about Jasper is giving you a bad vibe, but you can't put your finger on it. Still, it would be rude to just run off in the middle of a conversation, and at least you're helping Eligos out by taking some of the attention off of him.

"We haven't," you say, a little more stiffly than when you were talking to Eligos. Formally, like you were taught by so many etiquette tutors, growing up. "I am Prince Glasya-Labolas, son of Eisheth. Duke Eligos is a friend to several of my siblings."

The last bit is a little pointed, but Jasper keeps smiling at you nonetheless.

"Ah, a little prince," he says. He sounds amused, and it grates on you. "I know your mother well."

You find this doubtful. Jasper has never been a guest in your home, and you've only ever heard your mother speak distastefully about him. You suspect there's bad blood between the two of them, which is strange, because your mother is too famously reclusive to have bad blood with most people. She almost never attends high society parties, and is rarely seen at court.
>>
No. 898023 ID: 2ff745

Call him out on it. Mention, but politely and tactfully, that you think that's so interesting to hear, given that you have no idea when or how he could've gotten to know her so well.
>>
No. 898026 ID: bd5c42

>>898023
Seconded. Don't let him patronize you, you outrank him.
>>
No. 898028 ID: 4d46e5

call him out scotty!!!! or better yet bring your mom into it if she doesnt like jasper
>>
No. 898041 ID: dbf422

Wow, I guess he must have had some long-term but completely secret relationship that not even your mother wants to talk about. Hell, from the sounds of it, she doesn't even /know/ about it. That's pretty impressive and you should tell him that.
>>
No. 898042 ID: 51d5a1

The man can crush babies between his teeth. Not friendly at all and totally not flirtable. Abscond with the duke.
>>
No. 898062 ID: 4f1cbc

>>898016
My mother knows a great many people.
>>
No. 898074 ID: c1eaac
File 153472583087.png - (195.86KB , 700x600 , 10.png )
898074

"Do you? That's interesting," you say in your best polite-bored voice, giving Jasper a bland smile. "I've never seen you around our estate before. And my mother isn't usually secretive about her relationships with other nobles. I'm almost impressed that you've gotten to know her so well right under my nose, Lord Jasper."
>>
No. 898076 ID: c1eaac
File 153472584281.png - (193.55KB , 700x600 , 11.png )
898076

Jasper grins, perhaps a little more nervous than before. "Well. I suppose saying that I knew Heth very well was, ah, jumping the gun a bit."

"Well, Princess Eisheth knows a great many people," Eligos says. You catch a twinkle of amusement in his eye, just for a moment. "I just don't think you're her type."

A joke, about your mother's proclivity for accumulating a new lover every decade or so. You should be offended, but it's true, and funny. Eligos is definitely growing on you. Jasper, on the other hand...well, the more he talks, the less you like him. It might be time to take your leave.

>Excuse yourself politely to talk to someone else.
>Excuse yourself rudely to talk to someone else.
>Find an excuse to take Eligos to another conversation.
>Suggest that you and Eligos go somewhere private.
>Stay.
>>
No. 898077 ID: 51d5a1

>Find an excuse to take Eligos to another conversation.
>Be polite but add in this politeness a whole sandtruck of passive agressiveness.
>Just. A. Lot. Of. Passive. Agressiveness.
>>
No. 898078 ID: 270774

suggest that you and eligos go somewhere private, Extremely Passive Aggressively
>>
No. 898079 ID: 70df1e

>Find an excuse to take Eligos to another conversation.
>specifically, try ornias and camio? ornias seems to have all the gossip, maybe they can tell you what jaspers deal is. eligos too, since hes been talking to jasper for so long.
>>
No. 898111 ID: 4f1cbc

>>Find an excuse to take Eligos to another conversation.
Rescue complete!
>>
No. 898133 ID: c1eaac

You guys can also choose who you want to take Eligos over to talk to, otherwise I'll probably just go with the most narratively convenient conversational partner(s)
>>
No. 898167 ID: 51d5a1

Ornias, maybe?
>>
No. 898224 ID: c1eaac
File 153480657865.png - (134.04KB , 700x600 , 12.png )
898224

>Find an excuse to take Eligos to another conversation.

"I think I'd like to go and say hello to Ornias," you say, staring Jasper dead in the eyes. "Eligos, won't you come with me?"

"Certainly," Eligos says, giving you a grateful smile.

Jasper frowns, but says nothing.
>>
No. 898225 ID: c1eaac
File 153480658841.png - (211.36KB , 700x600 , 13.png )
898225

You and Eligos make your way over to Ornias, who looks just delighted to see you. Lord Camio looks a bit unhappy to have his conversation interrupted, but you're not sure you've ever seen Camio look happy.

"Glasya-Labolas!" Ornias says cheerfully, grasping your hand. "It's been ages!"

"I didn't know you two knew each other," Eligos says. Neither did you, actually.

"Oh, yes, we met at one of Murmur's dinner parties," Ornias says, before you can get a word in edgewise. "I'm sure you were there, Ellie. You remember, Glas, it was the one where your half-brother made an ass of himself?"

Embarrassingly, you have absolutely no memory of this. You're not even sure which half-brother Ornias is referring to, because you have several who often make asses of themselves.

>Pretend to remember everything.
>Change the subject.
>Greet Camio.
>Something else?
>>
No. 898226 ID: 70df1e

make a joke about your half brothers making asses of themselves often. also greet camio!
>>
No. 898227 ID: 270774

they make asses of themselves so often that you couldn't possibly keep track. you're stunned you couldn't keep track of someone as charming as ornias, though, either! don't leave camio out, ask him if he's enjoying himself so far
>>
No. 898228 ID: 4f1cbc

Point out that regrettably, you have more than one half brother who regularly makes an ass of themselves.

It's lovely to see again, however.
>>
No. 898244 ID: c0641d

“I’m afraid that barely narrows it down! Those parties do turn into a haze sometimes, though. Oh, and this is Lord Camio, correct? A pleasure and honor to make your acquaintance.” Offer hand and bow.
>>
No. 898263 ID: c1eaac
File 153481895425.png - (240.43KB , 700x600 , 14.png )
898263

"Oh, I'm afraid that barely narrows it down. My half-brothers make asses of themselves so often that I couldn't possibly keep track," You say, giving Ornias a winning smile of your own, and kissing their hand. "It's lovely to see you again, even so."

"My, aren't you the charmer!" they say, with a laugh."You simply must come to one of Murmur's parties again sometime. I promise they aren't all bad."

"I will," you promise. Duke Murmur is on friendly terms with your family, so it wouldn't hurt to put in more appearances at his dinners. Especially if Ornias and Eligos are there.
>>
No. 898264 ID: c1eaac
File 153481896490.png - (229.92KB , 700x600 , 15.png )
898264

Camio is still glowering behind Ornias, and they tug him closer by the arm, practically hanging off of him. "Glas, have you met my dear friend Camio?"

"I haven't," you reply, taking your hand out of Ornias's and offering it to Camio. "It's a pleasure to make your acquaintance."

"Yes," he says, in his gruff, heavily accented voice. He gives your hand one brief, firm shake with the hand not holding onto his cane, and then drops it like you've burned him. "A pleasure."

"Camio doesn't get out much," Eligos says lightly.
>>
No. 898266 ID: 70df1e

>confess undying love to camio
>>
No. 898268 ID: 70df1e

alternately and more seriously, ask these three whats up with jasper and why hes Like That
>>
No. 898270 ID: 038d01

Ditto, ask whats the deal with jasper
>>
No. 898284 ID: dbf422

>>898266
Oh yes, you're instantly charmed.
>>
No. 898314 ID: bd5c42

>>898264
Oh no, he’s hot...

Yeah, let’s ask about Jasper, but like, in a tactful way. We don’t want to alienate anyone who might actually like him.
>>
No. 898318 ID: 4f1cbc

Hmmm. I'm guessing he doesn't care much for the nobility, and his friend is an exception?

>"Camio doesn't get out much," Eligos says lightly.
A pity. Don't worry, I promise we're not all terrible at this parties.
>>
No. 898325 ID: 270774

seconding "a pity" as a response to camio's status as resident homebody. he's a CUTIE. but try to sound more genuine than normal - i bet that he hears pleasantries like that a lot, and that he isn't particularly impressed by them.
>>
No. 898705 ID: c1eaac
File 153499518718.png - (269.00KB , 700x600 , 16.png )
898705

"That's a pity," you say as genuinely as you can, giving Camio a smile. Despite his curt demeanor, you find him pretty much instantly charming, perhaps because he's so different from everyone else at court. You get the sense that he doesn't care for the nobility much, with the exception of Or (and maybe Eligos). "We're not all terrible at these parties, you know."

Camio huffs, and cracks a small smile. "I will believe it when I see it."
>>
No. 898706 ID: c1eaac
File 153499520091.png - (205.26KB , 700x600 , 17.png )
898706

"Glasya-Labolas was kind enough to rescue me from a conversation with Jasper," Eligos cuts in. "He keeps trying to get me to come to one of his dinner parties. I can't fathom why he thinks I'd be interested. Honestly, if he does it again, I'm going to threaten to report that club of his to my brother."

"I don't see why you haven't reported him already, if he bothers you that much," Ornias says. "You did look a bit cornered over there, though. I was thinking about coming in to pull you out myself, but then Jasper might have tried to talk to me."

"I hadn't met Lord Jasper until now," you say, with an impressive amount of tact. Eligos and Ornias seem just gossipy enough to give you the details with only a little prompting. "Maybe you could tell me about him?"

"Well," Eligos says, wryly, "you'd do well not to go to any of his dinner parties."

You can't shake the feeling that there's something about Jasper everyone is alluding to, but not saying outright. You could always pull rank on them to force them to answer, but it might ruin an otherwise friendly conversation.
>>
No. 898707 ID: 70df1e

pulling rank on them might ruin the conversation, so why not ask Camio? Look to him for answers. Since he doesn't seem to care much for court or nobility, he'd probably be the one most likely to tell you outright.

Also >confess undying love to camio
>>
No. 898709 ID: bd5c42

Hm, don't like that.

The great thing about being the highest ranking person in this conversation is that to a certain degree, you get to dictate what the social mores are here.

"It's not very polite to dance around a secret in front of those not in the know" might be a good move. Or something else slightly passive-aggressive but mostly joking.
>>
No. 898712 ID: 270774

be playfully blunt about the fact that you want to know, and you might as well rope camio into it. "look how they're playing games with me when obviously i just want to know what to watch out for!"
>>
No. 898713 ID: dbf422

>>898706
"Oh? Are they that boring? Or is it just having to be around him even more than is necessary?"
>>
No. 898775 ID: c0641d

“Oh drat! At this point, everybody’s collective warnings has made me overshoot ‘wary’ all the way into ‘curious!’ How bad is it, really? Are we talking ‘dreadfully dull,’ ‘potentially scandalous,’ or perhaps ‘genuinely dangerous?’ (Not that there’s much of a distinction between the last two, but it’s a distinction I do care to make!)”
>>
No. 899065 ID: 063958

>>898706
The more we hear about Jasper, the more that I believe he's one of those losers where the universe heaps crap on him because he is LEGITIMATELY such a horrible, HORRIBLE person. The more everyone dances around WHY his dinner parties are bad are only fueling this suspicion, especially with the implication of "reporting" him.....

Also, minor thought: I honestly think the eye on Camio's eyepatch actually used to belong to somebody.
>>
No. 899075 ID: 8af1e3
File 153525353793.png - (166.11KB , 700x600 , 18.png )
899075

"You see how they're toying with me, Camio?" you ask, shooting Camio a dramatic, long-suffering sort of look. "Dancing around the answer, when I just want to know what to look out for."

You have to admit, the more Eligos and Ornias go without telling you everything, the more curious you become. With the way everyone speaks of him, Jasper could be anything from dull to genuinely dangerous, but you'd really rather prefer to know all the facts and make the distinction for yourself.

Camio gives you another wry smile. "They aren't toying. It's just better unsaid in polite company."
>>
No. 899076 ID: 8af1e3
File 153525354518.png - (167.23KB , 700x600 , 19.png )
899076

"What's better unsaid?" you blurt out, your curiosity and impatience finally getting the better of you.

Eligos, Ornias, and Camio exchange a look, very clearly trying to decide what they should tell you - and who wants to be the one to do it. Finally, Ornias speaks, their eyes glittering with a dark sort of amusement. Their lips are curled up in a smile, one that says they just can't wait to see what you do next.

"Jasper eats angels, dear."
>>
No. 899077 ID: 70df1e

>oh fuck

eating angels seems not great mayhaps you know what we should do??? lets start a fight about it BACK TO JASPER.

"hey jasper so i heard you eat angels buddy"
>>
No. 899078 ID: 31eb45

Glas, I hope you know why that's something worth exceptional scorn, because compared to some of the shit that happens in other depictions of hell, I am left with no idea why that's enough to prompt Jasper's ostracism.
>>
No. 899080 ID: dbf422

"Christ."
>>
No. 899081 ID: bd5c42

Starting a fight in the middle of court SEEMS like an awful bad idea.

But hey. There's more than one way to make an impression...
>>
No. 899097 ID: b76897

>>899076
........okay.....Jaspar truly IS a completely HORRIBLE PERSON by even the standards of Hell, and it boggles the mind on WHY no body actually reported him yet.

....unless he's the type of douche who doesn't tell you until AFTER you're finished eating that its ANGEL FLESH as a form of blackmail.
>>
No. 899098 ID: 270774

whaaaaat does that mean. is that super bad. proceed to react in a Socially Acceptable but also Cool and Collected way
>>
No. 899103 ID: 8af1e3
File 153525984105.png - (185.34KB , 700x600 , 20.png )
899103

Oh. That's not the answer you expected but it's...pretty bad.

Actually, it's a lot worse than you expected, if you're really being honest. Killing angels is a direct violation of the treaty between Hell and Heaven that was established after the second war, and cannibalizing them is, as one might imagine, an enormous taboo. Grounds for trial and probably execution, if Heaven ever found out about it. You're surprised that they haven't yet, considering how many demons seem to know, but any angels who visit the royal court tend to be ostracized and kept out of the loop. So it makes a certain sort of sense.
>>
No. 899104 ID: 8af1e3
File 153525985060.png - (105.36KB , 700x600 , 21.png )
899104

A lot of the angels who visit Heaven (besides the diplomats) are known for being...well, not really the brightest bulbs in the box. Mostly thrill-seekers looking to have a good, noncommittal time with demons. So you've got a pretty good idea as to how Jasper gets his hands on angels to butcher them. Especially with his good looks and smooth personality.

At any rate, it seems like a huge pain to eat angels when humans are right there.
>>
No. 899106 ID: 70df1e

ask why they haven't reported jasper, maybe? >>899097
might be onto something with the blackmail thing here. we don't want to go getting our new friends into trouble for not speaking out sooner if we start something.
>>
No. 899107 ID: dbf422

Hey I know you want like, to date or whatever, but uh

I mean intrigue and social maneuvering is fun and you've had a great time but home's really not that bad a place right? Hopefully quite a lot less cannibalism.
>>
No. 899111 ID: 038d01

> "jasper eats angels"

thats hot.
>>
No. 899113 ID: bd5c42

Is there just an understanding that snitches get stitches in hell? Why has nobody told on this guy if everyone seemingly hates him?
>>
No. 899129 ID: 51d5a1

Oh, I tought Jasper was evil because he gave me that vibe of someone that sells cars and I'm personally scared of cars a lot. Eating angels isn't that evil if he's inviting us... Let's not eat angels.

Still, snitches get stitches and no rest for the wicked, let's not report Jasper until he begins to sell us some wicked ass cars.

Ask about Murmur's parties, dude sounds cool.
>>
No. 899137 ID: cefedd

One eww can't really imagine angels tasting that good.

Two snitching aside that seems like a problem that needs to be solved if only to mitigate any collateral damage should heaven ever find out or better yet to remove any chance of heaven finding out.
>>
No. 899159 ID: 8af1e3
File 153530552495.png - (180.71KB , 700x600 , 22.png )
899159

"Why hasn't anyone reported him?" you ask, having a hard time hiding the disgust from your voice. Eligos's brother is one of the few demons who acts as an emissary to heaven, and diplomacy is a pretty popular field for angels to go into. There are probably loads of people worth reporting Jasper to.

"Please, you think we want Heaven's diplomats sniffing around here?" Ornias asks. "Everyone's got skeletons in their closet, dear."

"But none so big as slaughtering angels to make a roast," Eligos adds wryly. "I've thought about reporting Jasper to my brother, but he's...slippery."
>>
No. 899160 ID: 8af1e3
File 153530556913.png - (149.72KB , 700x600 , 23.png )
899160

"Jasper has been investigated before," Camio says in his gravelly voice, as though it's of no consequence. You, Ornias, and Eligos all turn to look at him in surprise.

"What?" Ornias asks shrilly.

"A diplomat came to his estate to investigate him, eh...a decade ago," he says, with a noncommittal sort of shrug. "They live with him now. Help him find stupid angels to trick and eat. Probably keep him from being arrested."

Wow. That sounds...extremely illegal. You're starting to get an idea as to why your mother isn't very fond of Jasper.
>>
No. 899162 ID: 70df1e

that was all really good info to know actually
>lets keep tje fact that we know a secret from jasper for now as an ace in the hole if we need it later
also cas is really well informed. be appropriately impressed?
>>
No. 899163 ID: 611e56

Wait. an angel diplomat or demon?
>>
No. 899164 ID: 8af1e3

>>899163

an angel diplomat!! sorry i left off the descriptor there that was my bad
>>
No. 899187 ID: 4f1cbc

>Wow. That sounds...extremely illegal. You're starting to get an idea as to why your mother isn't very fond of Jasper.
Who's job is it to enforce those laws, though? Isn't your mother in charge? If we assume your mother knows, she must have some reason not to have acted on that information.

>what do
We should probably change the subject. There's not much point in escaping a painful conversation with Jasper if we're going to remain trapped in a painful discussion about Jasper. The deviant will get his due, eventually! Skeletons only stay in closets until someone can profit by dragging them into the light.
>>
No. 899189 ID: 2ff745

This is very tasty information for us to sit on, but there's not a lot that's worth doing with it right this second. Also, Camio has gossip that Eligos and Ornias don't? That's hot. Compliment him on being well-informed.
>>
No. 899191 ID: 8a27b2

seconding complimenting camio on having the hot goss, and also on changing the subject. but we should definitely hang onto this info. it would be really fun if we could yank it out on him later.

change the subject to, uhhhhhhh. foxglove! it would be good to have some idea of public opinion before we go to meet them.
>>
No. 899192 ID: dbf422

Okay, gross enough that Jasper's doing that but the angel helping him makes me upset. So, it's time to pretend none of that is happening and move on from this.

Camio, once again, being a smooth operator is a good place to segue to.
>>
No. 899270 ID: c0641d

>>899192
Honestly, same. If we do go for a little side project in making this operation crash and burn, we should make this angel our primary target. Ruining Jasper can never be satisfying if that angel gets off scott-free in the confusion, and if the angel goes down, Jasper is likely to go down with them anyways, and it won’t even matter that much if he doesn’t.

Anyways, I agree overall with complimenting Camio and changing the subject, but not before voicing these sentiments of this angel being the bigger fish if we do end up taking up frying as a hobby; there’s not much that a demon can describe as objectively “wrong,” but betraying and violating your own side will do it, at least in your book.
>>
No. 899327 ID: c1eaac
File 153542130086.png - (120.98KB , 700x600 , 24.png )
899327

"I'm impressed, Lord Camio," you say, because you are. For someone who seems to dislike going to court (and most of the nobility), Camio is very well informed. "You know a lot more about the goings-on here than one might give you credit for."

Camio lets out a barking sort of laugh, as if you've just told a particularly amusing joke.

"A servant learns to listen," he says. "A soldier, even more so."
>>
No. 899328 ID: c1eaac
File 153542130814.png - (115.28KB , 700x600 , 25.png )
899328

"What do you know about Foxglove?" you ask Camio, but also the rest of the group. They seem more than willing to give you the gossip on anyone you ask about, and it seems worth changing the subject away from Jasper. You're still a little grossed out about what you've just learned, but there's nothing to be done about it at the moment - better to keep the information a secret until you can use it to hurt him. Or his angel collaborator, whoever they are.

"Oh, Foxglove, poor dear," Ornias says, frowning. "They were a kitchen servant, you know, before they married Duke Vepar. And then he fell ill and died, only a few months ago. I do feel sorry for them."

"I wouldn't feel too sorry," Eligos cuts in. "Not if they're already courting again. They seem to have bounced back awfully quickly."
>>
No. 899336 ID: 70df1e

ask the group but especially camio if they think the duke's death was an accident. im assuming theres reason to believe otherwise if eligos saw fit to mention it?

>get the hot goss
>confess undying love to camio
>>
No. 899365 ID: dbf422

"Well, maybe that's just how they are. Soulmates can't be for everyone. Unless..."

>>899336
Then this. Well, everything but that last greentext.
>>
No. 899368 ID: bd5c42

I’m with the others, this does seem like an awful quick turnaround. Definitely warrants further research.

If we want to make taking down Jasper’s operation a secondary priority, I’d be behind that. The more bullshit politics we can embroil ourselves in, the better. That’s how you find true love, right?
>>
No. 899385 ID: 270774

to camio: "i'd love to hear more about being a soldier, when you have time. i'm sure i could learn from it."

this info on foxglove is ALSO very good to know. when looking for a spouse, it seems good to keep in mind whose spouses end up dead. even if foxglove didn't do it themself, if it's foul play, SOMEONE out here is in the business of killing husbands.
>>
No. 899398 ID: ee1478

>>899385
And if it IS foul play, it is important to know the WHY. Could the mundane "kill for inheritance" shtick or as bad as "knew things he shouldn't have" on a major political scale.
>>
No. 899429 ID: c1eaac
File 153550845302.png - (128.23KB , 700x600 , 26.png )
899429

You tuck the information on Foxglove away, resolving to keep it in mind if you get around to talking to them. Even if they didn't kill their husband, someone did, and making a demon stay dead is a hard thing to do.

"I'll have to give them my condolences," you say aloud. You didn't know Duke Vepar, but it only seems proper. "Between the four of us, do you think the duke's death was an accident?"

"Well, there's no proving it, but he did conveniently happen to leave Foxglove all of his staff, riches, and property shortly before it happened," Eligos says, with a knowing sort of half-smile. You get the impression that he and Camio, at least, are a little skeptical of the circumstances surrounding the duke's death.
>>
No. 899430 ID: c1eaac
File 153550847066.png - (207.74KB , 700x600 , 27.png )
899430

"So you think Foxglove killed him," you say, just to be sure.

"Oh, yes," Eligos says. "It's a lucky thing it wasn't Murmur, honestly. I know Foxglove was trying to court him for a while, after - well, you know."

You do know. Duke Murmur was engaged to your half-sibling Marax, who left him at the altar and ran off to live among humans. It's one of the most talked-about scandals this century, and you're pretty sure Murmur is still sour over it, even though he's still friendly with your family.

"Right," you say, a little embarrassed in spite of yourself. "Yes. That whole...ordeal."
>>
No. 899431 ID: c1eaac
File 153550848122.png - (133.01KB , 700x600 , 28.png )
899431

"Killing nobles isn't such a bad way to move up in the world," Camio says, rescuing you. You catch him smiling, briefly, before Or leans over and swats him.

"Don't be rude."

"It's a fact," he says, catching their hand and holding it. "I could have done the same to you, you know."

Ornias laughs, tugging him closer and looping an arm around his waist. "You would never."

Camio rolls his eye at you, as though to say see what I put up with? You have to admit, you're a little surprised. You knew that he and Ornias grew up together, but not that they were this...close. Watching them interact, they almost seem like lovers more than friends.
>>
No. 899433 ID: 70df1e

if camio and ornias are lovers then theres no helping it, we will just have to court them both.

give a knowing nod to camio but also wink at or. and what the hell compliment eligos' braid too. maybe we should just go all in guys, and get EVERY date, you know what i'm saying?

>confess undying love to camio
>confess undying love to ornias
>confess attraction to eligos' bookish charms
>>
No. 899448 ID: 0e2ebe

Tease them about how cute they look together.
>>
No. 899449 ID: 270774

>>899448
this, with additional flirtatious teasing about how they're going to make you feel left out.
>>
No. 899528 ID: c1eaac
File 153559392079.png - (187.03KB , 700x600 , 29.png )
899528

"You two look very cute together," you tell Camio and Ornias matter-of-factly. Both of them seem to brighten a little, Ornias more noticeably than Camio, though you're starting to get the knack of reading Camio's expressions. "You're going to make me feel left out if you keep paying attention to each other like that, you know."

"The prince is jealous," Camio says grimly to Ornias. "You should unhand me."

"Nonsense, there's plenty of room for both of you," Ornias says, gesturing to you with their other arm.
>>
No. 899529 ID: c1eaac
File 153559392752.png - (95.94KB , 700x600 , 30.png )
899529

"Well, perhaps I should leave the three of you alone," Eligos says. "I ought to go and be more social, anyway." He meets your eye, and gives you a little bow. "It's been lovely catching up, my prince. We ought to talk more often."

He doesn't seem particularly offended by your choosing to focus on Camio and Ornias, but he's so polite that it's hard to tell if the smile he has on is genuine or just for show. And he does have a point - maybe you should be talking to more people at court, instead of only paying attention to a couple.

>Stay with Camio and Ornias.
>Go with Eligos.
>Talk to someone new.
>See other conversational options.
>Something else?
>>
No. 899530 ID: bd5c42

>Talk to someone new.

Politely excuse yourself, and do promise to catch up later, but I think it's long past time we talked to Foxglove.
>>
No. 899531 ID: 70df1e

go get cozy with or and cas while you consider your other conversational options. maybe lament the fact that you just HAVE to go socialize and make appearances because you're a prince and ask for suggestions. surely camio would relate to not wanting to be social, and or seems to know everyone in the room and could probably help you out!
>>
No. 899532 ID: 270774

well, let's not leave eligos out, just in case he IS feeling miffed. indulge ornias and camio in a quick group squeeze, tell them you'd love to spend more time together later, then bring eligos with you to go meet foxglove.
>>
No. 899533 ID: 270774

and yes, express a little reluctance that your status keeps you from just whiling the evening away with them.
>>
No. 899535 ID: 0e2ebe

Stay with the couple. They're really fun to talk to in two very different ways. Who says meeting people at a party has to have a minimum quantity above three (or kinda four)? There can be time for that at some other event.
>>
No. 899543 ID: 038d01

> see other conversation options!
>>
No. 899685 ID: c1eaac
File 153567514333.png - (246.42KB , 700x600 , 31.png )
899685

>Talk to someone new.
>See other conversation options.

Before you decide if you're going off alone or dragging along someone from the group you're already in, you take a quick scan of the room to see who else is there. It's starting to fill up a bit more than it was initially, and plenty of new options have opened up to you.

There's Foxglove, of course, who you already know a few things about. They were a servant before they married Duke Vepar, and they may or may not have murdered him for his fortune. You get the feeling that Eligos probably won't go with you if you talk to them - or he will, but begrudgingly. Ornias and/or Camio might go, if you can convince them. Complicating matters further, Foxglove is deep in conversation with a tall, dark-haired demon who you sort of recognize as a friend of your half-brother Vetis's. You don't know him well enough to know his name, unfortunately.

Oh, and Satan is here! Of course Satan is here, it's his palace. He's entirely out of your league, but you could still make conversation with him all the same. He's a pretty friendly sort, from what you've seen. Gossip around Hell is that he and Ornias have been getting fairly close, so they could probably facilitate a formal introduction for you.

There's also an angel you've never seen before who your eye is drawn to - because he's, well, an angel. He seems to be having a great time drinking and chatting up the nobility, but he's not wearing a diplomat's uniform. In fact, his clothes look more like an outdated soldier's outfit than anything. If he really is a veteran of the war with Heaven, he and Camio aren't apt to get along very well.
>>
No. 899686 ID: c1eaac
File 153567516047.png - (132.19KB , 700x600 , 32.png )
899686

And then there's always Jasper. He is certainly...an option.
>>
No. 899688 ID: 70df1e

have eligos go with you to talk to that angel! his brother works with angels, doesn't he? so it makes sense that he would get along with them. promise to catch up with Ornias and Camio later, though!
>>
No. 899689 ID: bd5c42

>>899688
Seconded. We're a demon, so an angel should be an interesting novelty.
>>
No. 899690 ID: c0bd65

>>899685
OOOOO, speak with the angel! We heard so much about the politics down in Hell already, want to see how it is up there! However, do take a moment to see how Satan himself is dressed. For some reason, I envision him being dressed like a 70's metal band roadie that stumbled upon the movie set for a Victorian era period piece.

AVOID JASPER LIKE THE PLAGUE.
>>
No. 899691 ID: c21570

I really want to talk to Satan with at least Or as a go-between.
>>
No. 899693 ID: bd5c42

I amend my suggestion because I do think we should at least sneak a LOOK at Satan before we go bother the angel. Gotta Scope Those Fashions
>>
No. 899721 ID: dbf422

>>899691
I also want to specifically avoid the angel thanks to my newfound paranoia regarding cannibalism.
>>
No. 899747 ID: c0641d

Take Eligos to the angel, and watch for how Jasper reacts, since figuring out who his next victim is could prove lethal for him. Make sure Camio knows what's up so he doesn't get the wrong idea.
>>
No. 899903 ID: c1eaac
File 153578242714.png - (164.04KB , 700x600 , 33.png )
899903

Before you make a decision on who to talk to next, you glance over to scope out what Satan is wearing. He has a...different fashion sense from most of the court, because he tends to keep up with modern human fashions, and incorporate them into his wardrobe. You're sure what he's wearing right now is very fashionable on Earth.
>>
No. 899904 ID: c1eaac
File 153578243612.png - (156.09KB , 700x600 , 34.png )
899904

"I ought to go and make my rounds as well," you tell Camio and Ornias, with a smile. "As much as I'd love to while away the evening with the two of you, I think we'll have to catch up later. My mother does expect me to be social, you know."

"A pity," Camio says, gravely.

"It really is," Ornias agrees. "You'll have to come over for tea sometime, dear. I'd love to have you."
>>
No. 899905 ID: c1eaac
File 153578245159.png - (97.54KB , 700x600 , 35.png )
899905

With your goodbyes said, you set off across the room, keeping pace with Eligos even as he slows to greet several other passing demons who you assume are his friends. Or perhaps just acquaintances. He's so mannerly with everyone that it's hard to tell.

"I'm going to go and talk to that angel over there," you tell him, figuring it best to make your intent clear. "Will you come with me?"

"Who, Arariel? Of course," he says quickly, and you feel a little more confident for it. Not only because of who his brother is, but because Eligos himself is known for sometimes hosting classes of angelic diplomats-in-training at his estate for etiquette lessons. As angel-demon relations go, there's no one better you could hope to have in your corner.

Still, there's the matter of how to approach this mystery angel, who probably has no idea who you are, either. Do you try and play it cool, or let him know right off the bat that he's in the presence of a prince? Should you ask Eligos to facilitate a formal introduction?
>>
No. 899909 ID: 70df1e

rely on eligos! he's smart, and honestly, i bet he'd be flattered to be asked to help out. maybe ask if this angel knows to avoid jasper, or if that's something you ought to mention.
>>
No. 899923 ID: dbf422

Instead of asking Eligos outright to facilitate, ask him what he suggests would be best, and do that. Relying on his opinion would probably work well, especially if you play up his expertise.
>>
No. 899968 ID: c0641d

Don't forget to keep an eye trained on Camio and Jasper, if either of them are close enough to take notice. Jasper could betray something telling, and if Camio looks like he's starting to take this the wrong way, we need to make a mental note to address that before this witnessed encounter has a chance to stew in the back of his mind.
>>
No. 899970 ID: 2ff745

>>899968
Ooh, good thinking.
>>
No. 900489 ID: c1eaac
File 153611563586.png - (171.72KB , 700x600 , 36.png )
900489

"You probably have more experience with angels than I do, actually," you tell Eligos. It's flattering, but it's also true, and it brings a smile to his face. "Do you have any, ah, tips on what one's approach to meeting them should be?"

"With any other angel, I'd advise diplomacy," he says. "But Arariel...is not most angels."

You can't ask him what that means, because he's already leading you by the hand over to the angel, who seems very pleased to see him. You only barely have time to wonder how they know each other.
>>
No. 900490 ID: c1eaac
File 153611565598.png - (185.63KB , 700x600 , 37.png )
900490

"Hey, Ellie!" the mystery angel - Arariel, you guess - says, pulling Eligos into a bear hug as soon as he lets go of your hand. "How's things?"

"Hello, Arariel," Eligos says politely. He's stiff in Arariel's arms, though the polite smile on his face never falters. He's very good at that. "Everything is fine. Have you met my friend, Prince Glasya-Labolas?"

"Can't say I have!" Arariel says cheerfully. He lets Eligos go and turns to you, grinning lopsidedly. "Nice to meet you, prince. You got a shorter name than that mouthful?"

Normally you might be offended by the question, but you can't help but smile back at him. "Glas is fine."

"Glas, then," he agrees, giving your hand a couple of enthusiastic shakes. "I'm Arty. Only people who ever call me Arariel are this one," he gestures to Eligos, "and my brother, when I'm in trouble."

Now that you're getting a closer look at Arty, there's a lot about him that you hadn't noticed from across the room. His halo is even brighter up close, but his wings are hidden, probably shapeshifted away by choice. He hasn't offered much about what he actually does as an angel, but he has what looks like a knife strapped to his hip, instead of the sabre most diplomats are issued, or the longsword most soldiers wear in dress uniform. And then there's his eye...
>>
No. 900491 ID: c1eaac
File 153611566476.png - (74.57KB , 700x600 , 38.png )
900491

You take a quick glance around the room to see how everyone else - Camio and Jasper in particular - are reacting to you and Arty conversing. Jasper is eating hors d'oeuvres, and doesn't seem to have noticed what you're up to, but Camio is watching you idly. He doesn't seem agitated in the slightest, and he's still leaning up against Ornias, letting them play with his hair while they talk to each other. Everything seems relatively quiet on that front.
>>
No. 900492 ID: 70df1e

arty is cute and you should tell him so! also ask about his job? if he's not a diplomat, maybe he gets up to something cool.

its good no one is judging you for your choice in conversational partners so far and we should probably keep it that way.
>>
No. 900503 ID: bd5c42

Arty is a charmer, but let's not go letting our guard down just yet. This seems like a guy who could kick our ass.

I second asking about his job, though. It's an innocuous enough question and should help us get to know him better.
>>
No. 900529 ID: dbf422

>>900503
Maybe spin that question. Ask what brings him here, and lead that conversation to what he does for a job.
>>
No. 900586 ID: ddf699

>>900529
this, and also, take a second to feel flattered and a little fluttery that camio is still watching you
>>
No. 900610 ID: 56a05b

>You can't ask him what that means, because he's already leading you by the hand over to the angel,
>already leading you by the hand
>by the hand
HYAHAA
dont let go unless he does. this is vital

also, another vote for >>900529 ! arty seems like the kind of person who would find directness charming, but between his odd choice of weapon and his eye there's too much a risk that it could be a sour subject. let's start careful, and move to bold once we've felt out the space a little.
>>
No. 900624 ID: c1eaac
File 153620662715.png - (227.45KB , 700x600 , 39.png )
900624

You feel a little flattered that Camio is still watching you, but you turn your attention back to Arty for the moment. He's definitely cute - and also huge but you know so little about him that it's probably best to be wary, and not too forward. Angels can be touchy in conversation with demons sometimes, and you wouldn't want to hit on a sour subject.

"So, what brings you to court, angel?" you ask. "Angel" functions just as well as a formal title as it does a pet name - the same can't be said for "archangel", which is purely a term of respect for, well, archangels. But you're pretty sure Arty isn't one of those. "You're too handsome to be a diplomat."

Arty laughs. "Yeah, definitely not a diplomat. I'd be jumpin' out of my fuckin' skin if they tried to tie me to a desk."
>>
No. 900625 ID: c1eaac
File 153620663401.png - (159.31KB , 700x600 , 40.png )
900625

"So what do you do?" you ask, even more curious now than you were before.

Eligos starts to answer, but Arty interrupts, grinning.

"What do you think I do?" he asks in return, the mechanisms of his mechanical eye rotating as it focuses on you. "I'll bet you can't guess."
>>
No. 900626 ID: bd5c42

Well with those scars, we have to assume something violent. Maybe he was a soldier, too, although I can't imagine why he'd be down here if that was the case.
>>
No. 900628 ID: 70df1e

instead of a serious guess make a flirty one. ask if he is a model with a wink
>>
No. 900629 ID: 56a05b

give him a look up and down again. visibly and flirtily, of course.

internally: note the mechanical eye (possible zoom mechanism), scars, disarmingly jovial personality, knife (abnormal for angels in hell, small and agile but deadly)...perhaps some sort of spy / surveillance agent? certainly he's no stranger to battle, so there must be much more than meets the eye.

out loud, say: >>900628
>>
No. 900677 ID: 270774

do give him the lingering up and down, but there's gotta be something we can guess that's along the flirtatious lines of "are you a model" but also distinctly flattering to him. OR we could say something like "you certainly LOOK like a model, but i doubt you'd be satisfied without a little more adventure than that," etc etc
>>
No. 900699 ID: c0641d

"Well, I was told you were once a soldier, but I get a more... subtle feel from you now. I get the feeling you're still seeking out someone or something... dangerous. If that is the case, I would be more than happy with pointing you in the, ah... right direction. Though it's really more a rumor than anything else."
>>
No. 900790 ID: dbf422

Ask him if he's a spy. That won't set off any amount of irony or build the tension dangerously.
>>
No. 901099 ID: c1eaac
File 153651349208.png - (145.15KB , 700x600 , 41.png )
901099

You give Arty an appraising, up-and-down glance, making sure he sees you doing it, and that it comes off as explicitly flirty. You are noting a lot of things about him, though. His scars probably mean he does something dangerous, or he wouldn't have so many of them, and he wouldn't have a knife at his hip if he didn't know how to use it - or wasn't willing to. Combined with his disarmingly jovial personality and the mechanical eye (which is like no angel technology you've ever seen before), you're pretty sure he has to be some kind of spy or surveillance agent. Which makes it all the more interesting that he's here, at court, chatting up the nobility.
>>
No. 901100 ID: c1eaac
File 153651350304.png - (204.19KB , 700x600 , 42.png )
901100

"Let me guess..." you say, tapping your cheek thoughtfully. "You're a model?"

Probably better not to call him out on being a spy, if he is one. Not in front of everyone, at least. You might be off the mark, anyway, because Arty laughs.

"Nope!" he says, looking delighted. "I'm kinda flattered you think so, though. But nah, I clean up messes the folks upstairs and the folks down here think might start another war if they're allowed to keep goin' on. Well, my brother and I do. We're partners. We work on a kind of case-by-case basis, so we get a lot of down time."

"Arty and his brother kill war criminals," Eligos supplies dryly, before you can ask any follow-up questions.

Well. That's not exactly the answer you were expecting. And it certainly complicates things. You have to wonder how many people know what Arty does for a living - and if it would be a scandal for you to be seen with him. Eligos certainly doesn't seem to think so, though he and Arty already know each other, somehow. Maybe they're old friends, or something more?
>>
No. 901101 ID: 0e2ebe

Oh good, the dramatic irony was there after all. Eligos must not be that good a friend if he hasn't given up the war criminal just across the room. Though maybe Arty already knows and hasn't been able to act? Cannibalism is a war crime right?

Time to act really cool. Compliment him on the exciting job, it's much more interesting than modelling.
>>
No. 901105 ID: 70df1e

>>901101

i feel like cannibalism IS a war crime but is it still a war crime if it doesn't happen during a war? there's a peace treaty on right?

eating an angel is still a crime that warrants a trial and execution if heaven fins out about it though (it said so in an earlier post) so its pretty bad! most demons seem pretty put off by it even, so I doubt anyone minds that we're talking to an angel? or at least this particular one.

i feel like getting a noble in trouble for it (especially when they have an angel on their side) is really hard though. if arty does know about jasper, i doubt he's been able to act on it. that's rough buddy.

>ask about his brother, and how he knows eligos? see if there are any fun stories there, or about his job!
>>
No. 901123 ID: bd5c42

Well, at the very least, sounds like he can hold his own against Jasper if it comes to that.

How do we feel about angels, anyway? If there have been two wars with Heaven, are there hard feelings there?
>>
No. 901554 ID: f14764

how exciting!
press him for gossip!
>>
No. 902020 ID: c1eaac
File 153715251121.png - (240.63KB , 700x600 , 43.png )
902020

>How do we feel about angels, anyway?

The opinion on angels around here isn't exactly unanimous. A lot of former soldiers dislike them - which is fair, because they've probably seen friends cut down by angel blades - but most other people range from angel-neutral to angel-positive. Some people think they're too silly or flighty, or too good at sticking their noses where they don't belong, and some people think they're sexy (mostly because they're so rare in Hell), but no one seems to mind them hanging around that much.

You, yourself, think that angels are just fine. You don't have a reason to dislike them, and your mother has at least one lover who's an angel. You could probably get away with courting one, too, if you felt like it.
>>
No. 902021 ID: c1eaac
File 153715251822.png - (169.74KB , 700x600 , 44.png )
902021

"Your job sounds exciting," you tell Arty, with enthusiasm, because it really does. You can't even imagine what he and his brother must get up to. "You must have all the best gossip."

"Well, I don't know about gossip, but I've got a good story or two in me," he drawls easily, grinning. He doesn't say anything further about what those stories might be - you get the impression that he might be teasing, waiting for you to ask.

"What's your brother like?" you ask. "Is he as handsome as you?"

Arty barks out a laugh. "He's an acquired taste."

"There's...a reason Reuben doesn't attend court," Eligos says, diplomatically.

"Yeah, the reason is he fuckin' hates court," Arty says. "Well. He hates people in general. He's real good at killin' 'em, though. He keeps the horns of all the demons he kills, like they're huntin' trophies or somethin'."
>>
No. 902022 ID: c1eaac
File 153715253132.png - (190.16KB , 700x600 , 45.png )
902022

"Oh," you say. You're not sure how to feel about that. How would an angel feel if they heard a demon killed angels, collected halos, and hung them up on his mantle? Maybe you should change the subject.

"You didn't know any of this?" Arty asks, looking at you curiously. "I'd've thought Ellie'd told you some of it. I mean, they're dating."

<i>"Oh,"</i> you say again, with feeling.
>>
No. 902024 ID: ce950c

Well, now I know what we have to do. We HAVE to meet this other angel.
>>
No. 902025 ID: 70df1e

better not hurt arty's feelings unless you want your horns hung over the mantle... dangerous

ask ellison if he's ever been worried about losing his horns? or is that too rude? either way get the gossip my dude. try to suss out if artys brother will kill you if you give him a smooch
>>
No. 902027 ID: 270774

be cool! be cool! don’t look bothered! you gotta be COOL
also yeah we gotta say that we wanna meet him. we for SURE gotta meet him
>>
No. 902030 ID: dbf422

Don't be cool. There's no time to be cool. Just laugh really convincingly and ask for one of those cool stories.
>>
No. 902032 ID: b3a8f6

ask for stories!! and try not to think too hard about accidentally becoming a mantle piece!
>>
No. 902066 ID: a8aba6

YOLANDA BE COOL

ellie u sly dog you, keeping such a juicy secret
.....is there a reason its a secret? you wouldnt want to accidentally do something bad to your friend
>>
No. 902086 ID: c0641d

Hm... Squealing on Jasper outright to Arty might be too much, too soon. However, I think we like him too much to not at least drop a hint to try and warn him. "Look, I like your style well enough, so I'll leave you a friendly bit of advice; stay away from Jasper. He's trouble, especially for angels. Whether you take my advice and stay away, or decide to get your investigation on, I don't care, just DO NOT attend one of his parties casually. Your brother and his lover would be heartbroken if anything were to... happen."
>>
No. 902090 ID: 603f0d

>>902086
i like the core of this but let’s keep it subtle
>>
No. 902406 ID: c1eaac
File 153739721478.png - (218.75KB , 700x600 , 46.png )
902406

"Are you alright?" Eligos asks, side-eyeing you and putting a tentative hand on your shoulder. "I suppose I should have told you beforehand, but I didn't think it was an issue -"

"I'm fine," you assure him, acting as cool as you possibly can, and definitely not thinking about how your horns might end up in a tasteful wall display if you say the wrong thing to him or Arty. "Just a little surprised." You glance at Arty. "I think I might like to meet your brother, sometime."

"Easier said than done," he tells you. He looks pretty amused about it, but he's looked amused since you and Eligos walked over here. "Like I said, Reuben hates people. He's even got this magic glamour thing that stops 'em from noticin' him, when he wants. It's good for work, but he uses it for parties and shit too."

You try very, very hard not to be disconcerted by the idea of a demon-killing angel who you might not even notice in the same room as you. Your smile strains a little around the edges.

"I can introduce you sometime, if you like," Eligos says, quickly. "Reuben comes to Ornias's for tea on occasion, to spend time with all of us."
>>
No. 902407 ID: c1eaac
File 153739722312.png - (200.62KB , 700x600 , 47.png )
902407

"That would be nice," you say, giving Eligos a grateful look, before turning your attention back towards Arty. "Tell me, have you met Jasper Abbadon yet? I hear he's fond of angels."

Maybe it's a little unsubtle, but it should let you suss out how much Arty knows about Jasper, and possibly warn him to stay away from him. Maybe he already knows, though, because he tips his head back and barks out a laugh. Even Eligos snorts with amusement.

"Yeah, I know Jasper," Arty says. "He kidnapped Reuben once, actually. Real son of a bitch."

"Why didn't you do something about it?" you ask. If Arty and Reuben kill demons for a living, you're shocked that Jasper is still walking around in one piece right now.

"Well, he's got diplomatic immunity." Arty shrugs, looking a little sheepish. "I guess he agreed to snitch on a bunch of friends of his who are war criminals. Probably to that one snooty diplomat who hangs around him all the time. He's got some kinda person on the inside, I imagine."

That tracks pretty well with what Camio told you. It seems you're inadvertently building up a case against Jasper, while chatting people up for gossip.
>>
No. 902410 ID: 70df1e

>primary objective: date everyone
>secondary objective: take jasper to demon court? it would be a good way to impress everyone else at least.

sucks that jasper was able to get at artys scary brother and apparently got off scot-free. we should probably be REAL careful how we go about looking into this.

in the meantime flirt with eligos and tell him youd love to join him for tea. tell arty he has a nice laugh. they're both very cute and i bet they'd help investigate jasper if asked.

also ask arty if kidnapping a fellow angel (what is reubens rank in heaven, anyway?) would outweigh the rank of the angel responsible for Jasper's immunity?
>>
No. 902417 ID: ce950c

The concept of an imperceptible bounty hunter is a little...nervewracking, but at least if we've done nothing wrong, we have nothing to fear, right?

Maybe make a joke like "So what do I have to do to avoid getting de-horned?" to cut the tension a bit!
>>
No. 902429 ID: 270774

“diplomatic immunity is such an interesting concept! i wonder what would happen if someone were to abuse it to get away with things! surely it doesn’t make you invincible.
>>
No. 902437 ID: 0e2ebe

>>902429
A little direct, but before we go back to talking about how nice it would be to hang out with everyone at Ornias' I want to learn a bit more.
>>
No. 902473 ID: 69c5a4

You'd think there would be limits to immunity! I'm glad your brother is safe.
>>
No. 902500 ID: 9d9a0b

>>902429
LMAO THIS
>>
No. 902682 ID: c0641d

"Snooty, is he and/or she? Is there a name to attach to such an angel?" If asked why so interested. "Well, any angel that manages to get into the Jasper's good grace - yes, singular, I imagine - is bound to be interesting talk."
>>
No. 903070 ID: c1eaac
File 153785128551.png - (138.18KB , 700x600 , 48.png )
903070

"Diplomatic immunity? How interesting," you say, affecting your most polite-yet-curious tone. "You'd think there would be limits to that, especially if one were to abuse it to get away with things. Surely it doesn't mean Jasper is invincible."

"Well, no, it shouldn't mean that," Eligos says.

"And yet?" you prompt.

"And yet Jasper goes free while people like Arty and his brother hunt down war criminals on the regular for lesser slights." He sighs. "Like it or not, Jasper is gaming the system somehow. Beyond just immunity and a pet diplomat, I'd wager."
>>
No. 903071 ID: c1eaac
File 153785129964.png - (313.35KB , 700x600 , 49.png )
903071

"How?" you ask, glancing back and forth between Eligos and Arty. They both look back at you in return. Eligos frowns, and Arty shrugs his shoulders up to his ears.

"No idea," he says, his cluelessness written all over his face.

You could always go ask Jasper, but that might not go over well. Maybe someone else here knows something more? Or maybe you should change the subject.
>>
No. 903072 ID: 270774

let’s just change the subject. ask arty if he’s been introduced to the others around here yet, and what he thinks of them!
>>
No. 903074 ID: ce950c

This seems like a matter that would best be approached later. We can’t spend all our time chasing Jasper, that would leave no time for the really important business: flirting!

Ask the angel if he has any interesting stories. A career so dangerous has to have its fair share of adventures.
>>
No. 903075 ID: 70df1e

>>903072
i agree lets change the subject and ask arty (and also eligos!) what their opinions are on the other folks in the room. maybe ask them for the hot heavenly gossip if there is any
>>
No. 903078 ID: 0e2ebe

>>903074
All of this I want to happen.

Also, getting Jasper to admit to anything would work better if we ingratiated ourselves with him, and that feels like a long game. But interesting!
>>
No. 903145 ID: c0641d

“You know, I still only know his pet angel as naught but ‘his pet angel.’ Do they have a name? Jasper is being distasteful, yes, but this diplomat... well, they’re disgusting in such a more complex manner. The curiosity is eating me up. Last sensitive question, I swear.” Then actually change the subject regardless of whether they give you a real answer. Ask after Arty’s favorite assassination story, then excuse yourself to join back up with O. and Camio.
>>
No. 903146 ID: 0e2ebe

>>903145
Using words like "disgusting" is too honest.
>>
No. 903175 ID: 36183c

Dont ask Jasper "hey how are you avoiding capture, person I've already snubbed/pulled rank on?" lol
.....ask how long they've been dating and is it a secret
gosssiiiippp
also what does he think about demon soldier guy whose name I keep forgetting sorry
>>
No. 904401 ID: c1eaac
File 153845098033.png - (172.59KB , 700x600 , 50.png )
904401

"You know, I still don't know the name of Jasper's pet angel," you say, probing a little further for information. "Don't either of you?"

"Nope!" Arty says, cheerfully.

"I don't, either," Eligos agrees. "You'd probably have to ask someone who actually attends his dinner parties, and most people who do go know better than to talk about it. Even His Highness Satan finds them distasteful."

Satan was an angel once upon a time, and is still on decent terms with a few of them, so you suppose that makes sense. He probably just hasn't shut Jasper's parties down because he can't afford to, being such a proponent of free will. You imagine it's hard to put his foot down and enforce rules in a place that was practically built upon him feeling too tied down and leaving Heaven to make his own kingdom.
>>
No. 904402 ID: c1eaac
File 153845099456.png - (150.41KB , 700x600 , 51.png )
904402

"I'll have to ask around then," you decide. It seems like you've gotten all the information about Jasper that Arty and Eligos know, which means it's as good a time as any to change the subject. "I don't suppose there's any other juicy gossip in Heaven that I should know about? I really don't meet many angels."

"I can tell," Arty says, with a wink. "Heaven's not too excitin', though I guess it'd seem that way to you, on account of bein' mostly off-limits. Not much gossip I know of, really. I guess there was a big to-do about one of the archangels bringing a demon on as their secretary a little while ago, but it's mostly calmed down now."

"Really?" you ask, a little surprised. You're sure you would have heard gossip about a demon becoming the secretary to an archangel, but maybe the demon in question isn't a noble. Or maybe they just don't run in the same social circles as you. At any rate, it seems sort of unprecedented for a demon to run off and join the ranks of Heaven, but you suppose there's some appeal in letting a powerful angel take you under their wing.

"Oh, yeah. People got real up in arms about it for a while. It seemed kinda silly to me - like, if one of the big diplomat folks wants a demon assistant, ain't that improvin' relations with Hell?" Arty looks at you and Eligos questioningly for a moment to see if you agree, then relaxed, and flashes you a grin. "And we all know demons make great lovers."

"Well, there's something to be said for angels, too," Eligos says mildly.
>>
No. 904403 ID: c1eaac
File 153845101113.png - (270.07KB , 700x600 , 52.png )
904403

"I'm sure there is," you say, a flush steadily creeping up your neck from being flirted with when you least expected it, in a conversation about politics. Your only hope is to continue to act as cool as possible. "Have you met anyone else around here, Arty? I'd be interested to know what you think of them."

"Oh, sure," Arty says, as easily as ever. "I mean, I know Ornias and Camio through Reuben, kinda. Don't think Camio likes me much, but maybe his face is just like that. Or's a fox. I'd be all over that in a heartbeat if Reuben wouldn't kill me for doin' it." He laughs. "Can't say I've ever talked to anyone else here for more than a couple've minutes. I don't tend to make long-lasting relationships with demons, if you catch my drift. Though I hear Satan's pretty cool, all things considered."
>>
No. 904406 ID: 70df1e

agree wholeheartedly. Or IS a fox - and it seems to run in the family (winks at eligos).

the best way to stay cool is to flirt back but more powerfully so exude some big dick energy and tell arty you think hes hot. just go for it
>>
No. 904419 ID: ce950c

Arty is getting awful bold. There's no real way to know if it's actually flirting or if he's just Like That, but hey. Turnabout is fair play.

Maybe says something along the lines of "If we're supposed to be good lovers, I can only imagine how good angels are."
>>
No. 904422 ID: 270774

does reuben have a specific problem with or? or would you get in trouble for messing around with any demon? the latter would be disappointing :(
>>
No. 904447 ID: 7f78c0

>>904419
Yes

Please
>>
No. 904492 ID: c0641d

>>904406
This, but try not to keep the conversation going too long. I still want to meet Foxglove and possibly Satan, and maybe go back to Camio and drop hints that your time with Eligos's angel friend didn't entirely sit well with you. (I'm still voting for him to be our main route.)
>>
No. 904727 ID: 7e9c89

"haha, yeah, camio just looks like that. anyone with good taste would get along with you though!"
>>
No. 904732 ID: fefdfb

>>904422
IHHHHHHH MY GOD DO IT
ITS SO SUBTLE
BUT BEAUTIFUL
>>
No. 904829 ID: c1eaac
File 153862170194.png - (170.63KB , 700x600 , 53.png )
904829

"Ornias is very pretty. And I think Camio just looks like that all the time. Anyone with good taste would have to get along with you," you say, smiling at Arty. He's getting awfully bold, and you can't tell if he's really flirting, or if he treats everyone like this. "You're certainly very easy on the eyes. And if demons are supposed to be good lovers, I can only imagine how good angels are."

Arty lets out the longest and loudest laugh yet.

"We're okay!" he agrees, as jovial as if you'd just told him the most delightful joke.

"I do hope you wouldn't get in trouble for being with a demon," you say, just to make sure. It's hard to tell where the source of his reluctance to mess around with Ornias stems from, but it seems rude to ask outright.

"Nah," he says, waving the concern off. "I just meant I'd get in trouble about Or because Reuben has the hots for 'em."

"Reuben and Ornias are also lovers," Eligos supplies helpfully, looking mildly amused.

You stare back at him, having some trouble forming a response. An angel who's the lover of not one, but two demon nobles, who apparently hates socializing and going to court? You would have thought that would be gossiped about all over Heaven and Hell, but this is the first you've ever heard of it.
>>
No. 904830 ID: c1eaac
File 153862173496.gif - (4.48MB , 700x600 , 54final.gif )
904830

Before you can respond, the double doors that connect Satan's court to the rest of his palace open, and through them steps a noble you recognize.

"Duke Murmur, son of Leraje," the servant at the door announces. "And..."

They look as though they're about to add to that sentence, but the statement trails off into silence. They look briefly confused, before shaking it off, and closing the doors. How odd.

Murmur has already made his way into the room, and is making a beeline for the wine. Eligos, too, is making moves to disentangle himself from your conversation with Arty - apparently he's just found the perfect excuse. You know he and Murmur are friends, and in fact, Murmur is the fourth member of Ornias's weekly tea group.

"I should go and say hello," Eligos murmurs. "It was nice to see you, Arariel."

You find yourself a little torn at the options in front of you. Murmur is technically a friend of the family, but you were having such a good time with Arty...

>Go with Eligos.
>Stay with Arty.
>Something else?
>>
No. 904831 ID: e28d28

I think we ought to take this opportunity to go back and talk to Camio. If not that, though, we haven't met Foxglove, and there's a new person to meet as well...
>>
No. 904832 ID: 70df1e

go with eligos but bring arty along? lets meet this new guy! plus i SWEAR i saw something out of the corner of my eye, but nothings there now? wouldnt hurt to look into that
>>
No. 904859 ID: d3602f

>>904830
Arty, what do you see with your angel eyes?
>>
No. 904860 ID: 270774

go with eligos! we’ve made enough of a good impression on arty that we’ll be able to pick up where we left off another time. also see if we can snag camio on the way over to murmur
>>
No. 904863 ID: b1b4f3

Hey, that GIF is animated.
>>
No. 904869 ID: 9636d9

>>904831
Sounds good.

Also, just a hunch but the way that servant acted, maybe Murmur entered with someone who doesn't want to be seen.
>>
No. 905127 ID: 7e9c89

eligos tiiiime
>>
No. 905395 ID: 93fae2

does........does eligos like, WANT us to come along or? I can't tell, is he subtly ditching us?
>>
No. 905401 ID: c0641d

Go with Eligos. "So you're Duke Murmur, son of Laraje? The honor and pleasure are both mine. Who's your friend, if they mind me asking?" If we address the supposedly invisible friend without a hint of doubt, that'll probably prompt something besides stoic denial.
>>
No. 905461 ID: 3da452
File 153887994278.png - (132.43KB , 700x600 , 55.png )
905461

>i SWEAR i saw something out of the corner of my eye
>maybe Murmur entered with someone
>If we address the supposedly invisible friend

But there's no one with Murmur. In fact, you distinctly remember him entering the room alone.
>>
No. 905462 ID: 3da452
File 153887996794.png - (90.71KB , 700x600 , 56.png )
905462

Eligos is already well on his way to meet Murmur, and you make up your mind to go with him, though there's a stop you want to make first. But before any of that, you have to bid Arty farewell.

"I ought to go and say hello to Murmur, too. He's a friend of my mother's," you say, apologetically. "Hopefully I'll see you another time?"

"Oh, sure!" he says, giving you a big grin. "Actually, let me just -"

He manifests his wings without warning, just long enough to reach back and pluck a feather from them, and press it into your hands.

"You know how to use this, right?" he asks.

You nod, a little stunned. Angel feathers can be used to summon the angel that they're from, anytime, anywhere. Even to Hell. They're extremely hard to come by - much more rare than demons' calling cards - and Arty just handed you one like it was nothing.
>>
No. 905463 ID: 3da452
File 153887997643.png - (107.44KB , 700x600 , 57.png )
905463

OBTAINED: ARTY'S FEATHER
>>
No. 905464 ID: 3da452
File 153887999382.png - (113.69KB , 700x600 , 58.png )
905464

You hastily (and sweatily) mumble your thanks to Arty, tucking the feather into an inner pocket of your jacket so you won't lose it, and backing away from the conversation while he laughs at how flustered you are. Eventually, you find your way back over to Ornias and Camio, who are roughly where you left them.

"Ah, Glasya-Labolas, you're back! For good, I hope," Ornias says. They're sitting on one of the couches that are scattered about the room, eating bonbons out of a candy dish. "It's been so boring without someone to entertain us."

"Actually," you say, shifting awkwardly from foot to foot, "I was going to go say hello to Duke Murmur, and wondered if I couldn't steal Camio to, ah, join me."

"Well, it would be rude of me to turn you down," he says, low and amused. He's standing, leaning against the arm of the couch Ornias is on.

"And what am I to do all by myself?" Ornias asks, dramatically flopping down across the whole couch. "Surely you wouldn't leave me here alone."

They have a point - it would be rude to take Camio along and not invite them to come with. You could get away with it because of your status, but they've been nothing but sweet to you so far...maybe you should bring them. Or at least find someone else for them to talk to, while you grab Camio?
>>
No. 905465 ID: 70df1e

bring or along for the ride! murmur is a part of their tea group, right? so they ought to be friends anyways.

also success, feather get! keep that SUPER SAFE
>>
No. 905466 ID: 270774

it WOULD be pointedly rude to ask camio to come but not them - and it’s not like it would be less fun for or to be there! of course we’d like you along - but don’t hog camio from us. insert cheeky wink
>>
No. 905467 ID: 70df1e

Ordinarily, I'd be reluctant to let Ornias third wheel us, but they're cute too. Why not let them come along.
>>
No. 905476 ID: d4d429

everyone is Friend. also can we use.. the feather for a booty call if we get him to like us enough..
>>
No. 905485 ID: 329b70

dont leave ornias behind being alone at parties is a bummer!
>>
No. 905502 ID: 0f5855

Def take Or with.
>>
No. 905533 ID: 93fae2

ORNIAS IS THE LIFE OF THIS PARTY, YOU GOTTA TAKE THEM
>>
No. 906905 ID: 3da452
File 153956009793.png - (286.11KB , 700x600 , 59.png )
906905

"Of course you can come along," you tell Ornias. They're pretty much the life of the party, from what you've seen, so it would be a mistake not to bring them. And no one likes being at court all alone. "Just as long as you promise to share Camio."

You give them a cheeky sort of wink, and Ornias laughs, hopping to their feet.

"I'll try my best, but no promises," they tell you. You aren't too sure that they're joking, but it's better than an outright refusal. They and Camio are clearly very close - and have been since they were children, from what you know about them. Your chances of driving a real wedge between them are probably slim to none.

Still, you situate yourself between the two of them, one arm around Ornias's waist and the other around Camio's, and start steering them gently towards where Murmur and Eligos are. Neither seems to mind very much, and you're careful to go slow enough that Camio can keep up, with his cane.
>>
No. 906906 ID: 3da452
File 153956010479.png - (117.61KB , 700x600 , 60.png )
906906

"Hello, Murmur," you say, as you draw closer to the duke. He looks a bit surprised to see you with Ornias and Camio, but gives you a smile that's a bit strained around the edges in return.

"Ah, Glasya-Labolas," he says. His voice has just a hint of the same accent as Camio's, and his eyes are blue, with goat-like pupils. "It's been a while. How is your mother?"

"She's well, thank you," you say, with a smile. Murmur and his parent Leraje are both good friends with your mother, so he's likely inquiring out of genuine goodwill, rather than social niceties.

"And Marax?" he asks, innocently.
>>
No. 906908 ID: 3da452
File 153956046950.png - (83.64KB , 700x600 , 61.png )
906908

Eligos frowns, and Ornias grimaces, making a soft noise of displeasure in their throat. You feel Camio stiffen next to you. It seems likely that they all - like you - were hoping not to have to talk about anything to do with the...incident of Murmur being left at the altar. It was terribly embarrassing for both his family and yours, and everyone but Murmur seems perfectly content to pretend it didn't happen. A flush starts to creep its way over your cheeks.

Honestly, you haven't even seen Marax since that whole debacle. The last you heard, he was living on Earth, being taken care of by humans, which your mother (rightfully) thinks is a disgrace. You aren't sure if that's the answer Murmur wants, if he's asking out of real curiosity, or if he's just trying to humiliate you. His tone is so impenetrable that it could go either way.
>>
No. 906909 ID: 89bdff

"oh, we haven't spoken recently. but please, call me glas. how is [title] laraje? i hope you're both doing well?"
>>
No. 906916 ID: 3057cf

“i wouldn’t know - surely we have more fun things to discuss, though?”
>>
No. 906936 ID: 70df1e

being embarrassed/disgraced in satans literal actual court sounds dangerous, so lets not do that. its not like you and marax are close anyways, right? just be like 'i have no idea my guy, by the way how are you and leraje?'
>>
No. 906963 ID: ce950c

I can't imagine why he would ask you this if not to try to get your goat, and I think irritation is perfectly warranted.

"I don't know why you think I would know. I'm not his keeper."
>>
No. 907002 ID: 1872dc

>>906963
I appreciate the biblical reference, do this. Though if he's willing to move off this soon, maybe try niceties again.
>>
No. 907031 ID: c0641d

"I honestly haven't spoken with him recently, so I wouldn't know. You think I'm his keeper or something?" Try to keep a polite tone, neither irritated nor overly friendly, but still pleasant. Perhaps... "dismissive, but not confrontational." Can you pull that off? Then try to suddenly walk around behind him to get at the wine. "Which of these taste the best to you, by the way-"
>>
No. 907196 ID: 43a797

Whether Murmur is genuine or not there's a huge potential to get embarrassed here...Be pleasant and tell him unfortunately you don't know much since you aren't your brother's keeper, and then try to switch the convo by asking about the wine being served.
>>
No. 908867 ID: c1eaac
File 154088000299.png - (228.75KB , 700x600 , 62.png )
908867

"I'm afraid Marax and I haven't spoken recently. I'm not his keeper, you know," you say as politely as possible - but with enough of a dismissive edge that Murmur will know not to ask again, if he knows what's good for him. You've been trying your best not to throw your societal weight around in conversation, but you can at least use it to throw out topics of conversation you'd rather not revisit.
>>
No. 908868 ID: c1eaac
File 154088002630.png - (148.52KB , 700x600 , 63.png )
908868

"Do tell me, how is Leraje?" you ask, to try and divert the conversation before anyone else can let the Marax issue linger. "I hope they're well."

"I'm not their keeper," Murmur says, a little snidely.

You grimace before you can quite catch yourself - you weren't expecting him to talk back to you. You and Eligos trade an embarrassed look...but as you do, something changes.
>>
No. 908869 ID: c1eaac
File 154088005228.png - (210.62KB , 700x600 , 64.png )
908869

A whole other person abruptly pops into being, just to the left of Murmur. You startle at his appearance, but no one else does. He's an angel, with intense, piercing grey eyes - both on his face and on his wings. All of them are trained directly on you.

"I'm gonna make them all forget he ever brought up his ex, but he's gonna ask again if you ain't quick about bringin' something else up," he says, sounding somehow like he's disappointed in you before you've even made an attempt.
>>
No. 908870 ID: c1eaac
File 154088006714.png - (126.54KB , 700x600 , 65.png )
908870

You start to reply, but the angel vanishes again. Actually, you can't even remember what he looked like at all. Just his advice. Strange.

"I've forgotten what I was about to say," Ornias says lightly, slipping behind Murmur and pouring themself a glass of wine. "Anyhow, it is good to see you, Murmur. Glas, have you and Murmur met? He was engaged to your half-brother, you know."
>>
No. 908872 ID: 70df1e

bring up the angel and the fact that you cant remember what he looked like. i mean... thats better than diving right back into the conversation about murmur's ex, right?

its maybe throwing him under the bus a little, but we're under pressure, here! and angels are supposed to be forgiving right... its fine
>>
No. 908874 ID: 986b2d

>>908872
AbsoLUTELY not. This angel might be kinda creepy, but he just gave us an out. Repaying that by throwing him under the bus when he clearly doesn't want to be seen would just be rude!

"Of course we've met. Murmur is a friend of my mother's."

And then uhhh, ideally say something else to shift the focus of the conversation to your mother rather than Marax, assuming that she's a much less touchy subject.
>>
No. 908877 ID: a7ae46

it deeeefinitely does not seem like a good idea to mention the angel, lwt’s just.. not disappoint them ;; can we dazzle him or strongarm the convo?
>>
No. 908881 ID: 1872dc

>>908874
I dunno, he just wiped a bunch of people's minds to smooth over a kind of awkward situation. Maybe he knows something about where it was going but right now it seems like overkill. Though I doubt revealing him would do anything but piss him off, considering the mind wiping.

Anyway, maybe confront the situation yourself? That is, apologize on behalf of Marax and say that you wish you could have helped in some way. Lie through your teeth and give Murmur no room to take it out on you.
>>
No. 908919 ID: b1b4f3

>>908874
This approach might be best. If you bring up your mother and how Murmur is friends with her, it'd be pretty rude for Murmur to ask how his ex is doing rather than how your mother is doing.

You could seal the deal by mentioning something interesting that your mother has been involved with lately.
>>
No. 909196 ID: 43a797

definitely Do Not bring up the angel who can pop in and out of being seen and wipe minds. keep that in your back pocket to ask Arty about in the future though.

for now its best to say (confident and politely, like you didn't hear the thing about your brother) that you've met through your mother, and then change the subject. maybe ask how ornias, camio, and eligos met murmur? that way the focus is off you and your family
>>
No. 909198 ID: c0641d

I agree with shifting the conversation to your mother. Maybe discuss her parties? Meanwhile, is there a way you can quickly draw up a note labeled "What is your name, invisible friend of Murmur?" and leave it on the table behind you without any of the visible folks noticing?
>>
No. 909229 ID: 10c408

>>909198
We can figure out Mr. mysterious mindwiping angel's deal later when we've socially maneuvered away from the current conversation.

Probably by discreetly bringing it up with araiel. Tomorrow. When we're VERY sure that we won't be in danger of being disappeared.
>>
No. 909626 ID: 270774

it is time to talk about mom and time to NOT talk about the angel. i bet they’re gonna show up again even if we don’t poke around asking about them, honestly
>>
No. 911349 ID: c1eaac
File 154278094324.png - (203.21KB , 700x600 , 66.png )
911349

"Of course we've met," you say smoothly, forcing a smile and a good attitude. "Murmur and Leraje are friends of my mother's. Though I don't think Murmur has visited us in a while. He's been busy throwing his own parties, I hear."

"More or less," Murmur agrees, glancing at you like he's just now noticing you for the first time. "It's nice to see you, at any rate, Glasya-Labolas. How has your mother been?"

"Well, thank you," you say - then remember how this part of the conversation went before, and quickly keep talking before Murmur can ask anything else. "She had a small dinner party a few nights ago, and I had the chance to talk to Leraje then. They seemed in good spirits."

"They're always in good spirits," Murmur says mildly. "Whether or not they should be."

"Murmur clearly doesn't take after them," Ornias says, eliciting a snort of laughter from Camio, and a smile from Eligos. Murmur looks a bit put out, but the comment was clearly intended to be gentle ribbing, not a genuine insult.
>>
No. 911350 ID: c1eaac
File 154278095482.png - (118.68KB , 700x600 , 67.png )
911350

"How do the four of you know each other, if I may ask?" You glance around between the four other demons, trying not to let your eyes linger too long on where Murmur's angel companion was before. Or still is, maybe. You have no idea.

"Oh, we're all old friends. Ornias and I grew up together as cousins, and Camio was their manservant from a fairly early age, before he went and became a soldier," Eligos says. You're really growing to appreciate how ready he is with an explanation for just about anything you care to ask. "Murmur and I have been friends since we were younger, too. He used to be much more badly behaved."

"I was not," Murmur protests, scowling.

"He was," Or says. "Not to say that he can't still be perfectly terrible, but he was terrible in a completely different way, in his youth."

"Murmur is an incubus," Camio supplies helpfully, in response to your uncomprehending look, and you understand instantly. Incubi are generally insufferable as young adults, for fairly obvious reasons - their high sex drive, first and foremost. They generally learn to control themselves as they age, which you assume is why Murmur is the way he is now.
>>
No. 911351 ID: c1eaac
File 154278098150.png - (187.14KB , 700x600 , 68.png )
911351

"My condolences," you tell Camio in return, wryly, and are satisfied when you get another amused snort out of him.

"Yes, yes, it's all very funny. As though the three of you weren't also terrible when we were younger," Murmur says, scowling even deeper. He smooths the expression over quickly, though, and glances to you. "Anyhow, what have you been up to these days, Glasya-Labolas? You don't come to court often, do you? You must take after your mother."

Ah. You were hoping not to have to talk very much about yourself, but it's finally come up. What have you been up to lately?

>Spending time with your aunt and/or uncle
>Moving out of Heth's estate
>Being tutored
>Attending parties
>Something else?
>>
No. 911353 ID: 70df1e

you've been busy... dating? looking for an engagement - if that's not too forward to come out and say, that is!

otherwise, maybe mention that you've been busy moving into your own estate? you're a single demon in possession of good fortune, so you can probably afford your own
>>
No. 911355 ID: ecab07

attending parties!! hint you’re looking to meet some new people winky face
>>
No. 911363 ID: e0ca8d

Spending time with your aunt. But you realized that you couldn't just spend all your time with family and finally got out to socialize for once.
>>
No. 911372 ID: 10c408

Moving out of Heth's estate.

Let's be honest, if you want to get hitched you should probably move out first.
>>
No. 911465 ID: 2af340

say you've been busy getting tutored
being smart is hot right?
>>
No. 913582 ID: c1eaac
File 154442376845.png - (189.61KB , 700x600 , 69.png )
913582

"Well, I've been moving into my own estate, which I'm afraid isn't terribly interesting," you say, with a laugh.

It really is boring, in your opinion - lots of new staff to hire, and rooms to fill with furniture and decorations that have to be picked out and bought. You've been letting your Aunt Lotus guide you through most of it, honestly, because you didn't have the faintest idea where to start when your mother gave you the option of moving out on your own. Aunt Lotus is much more...available than your mother, most of the time, and has always been your favorite. You're not sure you're her favorite - she has an awful lot of niblings - but she's been invaluable, and very sweet.

"Oh, no, that's exciting!" Ornias says, clapping their hands together. "I hadn't heard about that at all, and I'm always the first to hear everything. You must tell us where your new estate is, darling."

"I will, just as soon as it's ready for guests," you promise, to their absolute delight.
>>
No. 913583 ID: c1eaac
File 154442380557.png - (144.11KB , 700x600 , 70.png )
913583

"That's all you've been doing?" Murmur asks. "Seems like a job better left to servants."

"I've been attending parties, too," you add, a little hastily. "I thought it might be time to make a proper societal debut and meet new people, now that I have an estate of my own."

"Well, you've met all of us, so I would say you've accomplished your goal admirably," Ornias says.

"Maybe not that admirably," Eligos says, a smile tugging at his lips. A knowing sort of smile, his eyes fixed intently on yours as though they're trying to bore into your thoughts.

Ornias turns on their heel so quickly that their dress flaps around them. "And what could you possibly mean by that?"
>>
No. 913584 ID: c1eaac
File 154442384325.png - (140.35KB , 700x600 , 71.png )
913584

"The prince was talking about courting," Camio says, in that charmingly blunt way of his. "He's looking for someone to marry."

"Because marriage has such a good track record in that family," Murmur says under his breath.

"Oh!" Ornias's hand flies to their mouth in surprise, their eyes wide. Like they had never considered that you were doing anything besides friendly flirting, the kind that most demons do. To be fair, you never really indicated anything to the contrary. "Is that true?"

"Yes, do tell, Glasya-Labolas." Eligos says, glancing to you. His smile is more smug now, with a malevolent sort of edge that you aren't certain if you're imagining or not. "Are you looking to marry soon? Or just looking for someone of your station who's worth a quick fuck?"
>>
No. 913585 ID: e0ca8d

Eligos, you demon. "You can't just ask me, or anyone, like that! ... That said, I'm looking for people I enjoy being around. Whether that leads to one thing or another is completely incidental. This isn't about a one-night stand."
>>
No. 913586 ID: c1212a

Well, should ever I decide to fool around outside my station I shall certainly seek your advice.
>>
No. 913587 ID: 5a620a

hmm be diplomatic!! you want to make ur own connections, and wouldn’t be opposed to either having some fun or something more.. permanant. maybe rebuke him a lil?
>>
No. 913589 ID: 70df1e

>>913586
this is hilarious say this to eligos' face absolutely. its the greatest rebuke too because we dont have to answer his question AND it gets him to knock it off. Besides, technically we don't have to marry, we are allowed to just make friends (or friends with benefits) so we don't want to scare anyone off by throwing marriage on the table too soon, maybe?

also is that angel (the invisible one) still around just watching these guys tear into us?? where is our restart, comrade... give a fella a hand...
>>
No. 913592 ID: 0d39c7

>>913586
oh my fucking god do this
>>
No. 913593 ID: 270774

>>913586
carpe jugulum
>>
No. 913613 ID: b815ea

"Are you offering? The position is open apparently"
>>
No. 913631 ID: 10c408

Let's not be too much of a dick to Eligos, he's been very informative this evening and even if he does deserve being deadpanned so bluntly, going overboard on it like this is going to bite us in the ass.

"The latter isn't an option. The former is far too bold."
>>
No. 913641 ID: 986b2d

no we MUST be a dick to Eligos. I second >>913586
>>
No. 914135 ID: c1eaac
File 154492800641.png - (161.52KB , 700x600 , 72.png )
914135

"I don't believe that's any of your business, Duke," you answer Eligos without missing a beat. Two can play at being duplicitous, though it's a little bit of a shame. You thought you were getting along so well. "Though should I ever decide to fool around outside my station, I will certainly seek your advice."
>>
No. 914136 ID: c1eaac
File 154492801806.png - (215.33KB , 700x600 , 73.png )
914136

Eligos's mouth is agape for just a moment, a look halfway between surprised and offended crossing his face before he covers it up, pressing his lips together in a thin line. Ornias is hiding their mouth with a hand so you can't tell if they're smiling or frowning, and Murmur says "wow" under his breath, his tone acerbic. None of them say anything more, though - you're technically allowed to talk to any of them like that by virtue of being a prince. It's not nice to pull rank, but it wasn't nice of Eligos to say what he said, either.
>>
No. 914137 ID: c1eaac
File 154492802948.png - (134.53KB , 700x600 , 74.png )
914137

Finally, Camio lets out a deep-throated, genuine laugh, effectively breaking the silence. Or looks at him, and he keeps laughing, leaning on his cane to keep himself upright.

"What?" he asks, a little breathless. "It was funny. Eligos deserved it."

Everyone else is still silent, and you get the idea you may not be welcome in this conversation much longer.
>>
No. 914138 ID: 70df1e

try to make it clear that you were playing around, not /actually/ pulling rank. Cas already seems to get the idea! eligos shouldnt dish out what he cant take in return, this IS hell after all. surely eligos didn't expect you to just take what he said lying down, right?

worst comes to worst, why not say hi to satan? that would be pretty impressive, right? youre a price, hes the king... its probably ok
>>
No. 914139 ID: 270774

then it’s time to bail with camio, obviously
>>
No. 914140 ID: 270774

>>914139
aaaaafter, yes, making it clear you were joking
>>
No. 914142 ID: 10c408

Someone better pick up that phone, because I fucking called it!

Either abscond this entire conversation with Camio or hastily explain that you will brook no snide insinuations about pulling a one night stand with anyone. You are also only a little sorry to pull rank like that, your title shouldn't be used as a bludgeon.
>>
No. 914159 ID: c1212a

Camio looks more like he's trying to get on side than actual comedic appreciation. I'd suggest apologizing or at least saying you spoke much to hastily instead of playing it off if you want to diffuse the situation.
>>
No. 914180 ID: 1ad7ed

camio HANDSOME.. i have no advice but i love he
>>
No. 914188 ID: 443893

Clap Camio on the shoulder and join in on the laughing. I have the distinct impression that it wasn't a joke, but hey.

You can always lie your way back into favor.
>>
No. 914196 ID: c0641d

Laughing along might be disengenuine and awkward. Be frank about it: “See? Camio gets it. I may be a bit casual with how I carry myself, but I’m no exception where a little ribbing is involved; few have the rank to level a little tat on a prince without expecting them to fire back with some tit in kind. You know this.” Clap your hands together, and present them with a polite out to take; “I’m going to talk with a few more of my fellow guests as the night winds down. All of you are free to join me, if you so choose.” Overall, this should convey that ‘no, I’m not too angry, but it’s definitely you who screwed up, not me; anyways, forgive and forget, I suppose.’
>>
No. 914198 ID: 443893

>>914196
If you think laughing along is awkward, talking down to them is definitely not the right idea.
>>
No. 914229 ID: c1eaac
File 154499371858.png - (202.38KB , 700x600 , 75.png )
914229

You watch Camio laugh for a moment longer, struck by how handsome he is when he's actually enjoying himself, and then clear your throat.

"Perhaps I spoke too hastily. I didn't intend to insult you in a way you felt you couldn't respond to, Duke, but I'm sure you understand that I can't simply take a comment like that lying down. It was only a joke. As I'm sure you meant for your comment to be all along."

"Yes," Eligos says. By the tone of his voice, you can tell he's exercising a remarkable amount of restraint. "A joke."
>>
No. 914230 ID: c1eaac
File 154499372867.png - (221.16KB , 700x600 , 76.png )
914230

"Camio seemed to get the idea," you say, pointedly. "At any rate, I'm going to make the rounds and talk with some of my other fellow guests. I'm sure the four of you would like some time to yourselves, unless anyone wants to accompany me."

"I'll come," Camio says.

You and Ornias both give him surprised looks, and he shrugs.

"Someone needs to keep the prince out of trouble. And I'm getting bored."

"Oh, very well," Ornias says, with a sigh. "Just have him back by the end of the night, Glas, and do try not to run him off. He's very sensitive."

They reach out to pat Camio on the cheek, and he gives the exact grimace of a cat receiving unwanted affection from its owner.
>>
No. 914231 ID: c1eaac
File 154499374154.png - (379.16KB , 700x600 , 77.png )
914231

You and Camio set off, surveying the room to see which guests are still here, and who else has arrived since you last checked. Perhaps you'll go back and speak to someone you've already talked to, or someone you've heard gossip about. Or perhaps you'll discuss some options with Camio before proceeding.

There's also, of course, the option of going somewhere alone with Camio - maybe to one of the private sitting rooms, or out to the garden. But people might talk, if they see you very transparently whisking him away from Ornias.
>>
No. 914234 ID: 1c8d75

discuss options with camio! see if theres anyone he'd like to talk to or if he'd rather spend some time alone to keep you out of trouble ;)
>>
No. 914235 ID: 3806ca

I second asking camios opinion. lean in conspiratorial
>>
No. 914239 ID: 2af340

it's real ask-camio's-opinion hours, lads!!
>>
No. 914243 ID: c1eaac

i forgot to mention this but you can also ask camio how he feels about specific people on that select screen!
>>
No. 914316 ID: 27c0bc

>>914243
[/spoiler]but I want to know about what he thinks about all of them! I'll settle for two.[/spoiler]

Ask about top right and bottom middle.
>>
No. 914369 ID: 521b23

yea let’s ask his opinion!!! both on who, and what he thinks of them. compliment his humor
>>
No. 914411 ID: 70df1e

i want his opinions on everyone too! top middle and bottom left especially... love those angels
>>
No. 914424 ID: 43a797

We definitely wanna know about everyone, but let's start with his thoughts on the top middle and bottom left!
>>
No. 914521 ID: 270774

ask what camio wants to do but uhhhh.... make it clear that whisking him off somewhere is one of the options he can give an opinion on. just for the record.
>>
No. 915154 ID: c1eaac
File 154589102283.png - (243.78KB , 700x600 , 78.png )
915154

"What do you think of going somewhere on our own?" you ask, tentatively.

"I think that's awfully forward of you," Camio says, with a laugh, not looking particularly offended by the question. "You don't even know anything about me."

"I do so," you retort. "I know you were Ornias's manservant, and then a soldier."

"Everyone knows that," he says, still sounding awfully amused.

You huff in annoyance, but you have to admit he's right. You only know what you've heard of Camio from other people, for the most part. You haven't even asked his opinion on anything or anyone.

"Well, then, help me pick someone to chaperone us. Tell me what you think of..." You scan the room, glancing from face to face. "The king."

"Ah," Camio says, his smile vanishing.

"Bad choice?"

"No." He follows your line of sight to Satan. "Ornias is...in favor, with him. I have to talk to him, sometimes. I find him insufferable, and have told him as much to his face."

Your eyebrows shoot up. You're about to ask how Camio could have possibly said a thing like that and evaded public execution, when Satan notices the two of you looking over at him and - to your surprise - winks and makes finger guns at Camio.

"He likes me," Camio says, with a long-suffering sigh. "I will never understand why."
>>
No. 915155 ID: c1eaac
File 154589103015.png - (145.22KB , 700x600 , 79.png )
915155

"What about..." You look away from Satan, your eyes eventually landing on a face you vaguely recognize from high society parties. "Lord Azza?"

Camio barks out a laugh. "Oh, Eligos hates him."

"Really?" You raise your eyebrows again. That gossip is completely new to you - though, to be fair, you don't know very much about Azza. Just that he's from a rich family. "Why?"

"I'm not sure. Something to do with fighting over the same humans, I think." He shrugs, looking entirely unbothered. "I like watching Eligos try to avoid running into him at parties. It's funny. They've come to blows before, I think."

"Really." Your eyebrows creep up even farther. You can't imagine Eligos physically attacking anyone - not in his humanoid form, at least. He seems too delicate.

"Really," Camio confirms. "It was messy, from what I hear."
>>
No. 915156 ID: c1eaac
File 154589104856.png - (134.55KB , 700x600 , 80.png )
915156

You nod, filing the information away for later. "I see."

"This is fun," Camio says, managing to surprise you once again. "Ask me another."

"Surely you can't know everyone here," you tease him. "I thought you were supposed to be a recluse."

"I am," he says gravely. "A recluse with strong opinions."

You keep looking around the room, trying to pick out someone Camio might know, and finally find the perfect target.

"I'm sure you know Andras," you say sweetly, and are gratified when Camio lets out an amused snort.

"Of course I know Andras."

"And what do you think of them?" you ask, knowing very well what he probably thinks. Andras used to be Murmur's head servant, and everyone knows that they were also his rebound after Marax left him at the altar. Until they ditched him for your half-brother Shax - Marax's twin. Both of them are generally thought of as a little obnoxious by the other nobles, though you've never had any real qualms with either of them.

"I think they're adept at social climbing," he says diplomatically. "It's respectable. And I think they and Shax deserve each other."

It's such a backhanded compliment that you have to laugh.
>>
No. 915157 ID: c1eaac
File 154589105886.png - (109.31KB , 700x600 , 81.png )
915157

"Who's that?" you ask suddenly, your eye caught by someone you're pretty sure you've never seen before. They're an angel in a plain, modest-looking dress, not the uniform of a diplomat or anything remotely similar.

"No idea," Camio says, glancing off in the same direction. "Never seen them before. Probably an angel in over their head."

His assessment sounds about right. The angel you're both looking at doesn't seem to be accompanied by anyone, and they're standing alone, looking at the demons around them with apprehension. You're honestly surprised no one has tried to trap them in a conversation yet.
>>
No. 915158 ID: 8d6777

“as fascinating as your opinions are (and i’ll be asking more later, darling,) perhaps we should go check on them? meeting new people together is a good way to bond <:”
>>
No. 915159 ID: 70df1e

lets go see the angel! both because they seem cool and also because uhhh theres a dude who eats angels hanging around (jasper) and a lost angel is like, a prime target. lets avoid a war with heaven!
>>
No. 915163 ID: ee3259

>>915158
Thiseroo. We should definitely have another go at hearing what Camio has to say about everyone, but before that we should greet this angel and see if they're having as grand a time as their face is showing.
>>
No. 915169 ID: 930d12

I love Camiooo

Okay. Just a guess, but maybe the king has a fondness for rebellion.
I think we should talk to the lone angel. They're very interesting, what with them looking confused. Maybe there's a greater mystery! Or they're exactly as they appear, which is just as fun.
>>
No. 915206 ID: 9fcd43

Go mess with - I mean rescue the angel
>>
No. 915233 ID: c0641d

"I've heard your general opinion of angels isn't spectacular, but I think we can agree that there are very few who deserve to be eaten outright, so perhaps a friendly warning about a certain demon - rhymes with rasper - might be due. What sayeth you?" Cast your gaze around at the people you haven't discussed with him to telegraph that this isn't a rhetorical question; he has a legitimate choice.
>>
No. 915506 ID: df855e

lets keep that lonely angel company! maybe you can bring them a drink as well to start a convo with them?
>>
No. 916573 ID: c1eaac
File 154683535984.png - (257.64KB , 700x600 , 82.png )
916573

Your attention lingers on the angel for a long moment, before you finally glance back to Camio.

"I know your general opinion of angels isn't spectacular, but do you really think we ought to leave them on their own with Jasper about?" you ask. "We could at least warn them."

Camio raises an eyebrow, still regarding the angel with mild interest. "If they came to Hell, they should know the dangers of acquainting themself with demons."

"Please, Camio," you say, pouting. "We don't have to stay long, and we'll be helping avoid some diplomatic trouble for the king. Wouldn't it look bad for him if an angel was kidnapped at court?"

"Yes, yes, fine," Camio says, waving away your question with the hand not on his cane. He sighs. "You are lucky I'm not fond of Jasper."

"I had a feeling," you reply, with a little wink.
>>
No. 916574 ID: c1eaac
File 154683537007.png - (114.76KB , 700x600 , 83.png )
916574

Speaking of Jasper - you glance back towards the angel, and your stomach sinks. Jasper is approaching them from only a few yards away, grinning like a beast who's caught the scent of blood on the wind. That's less than ideal. However you choose to approach this, you'll probably have to be quick, but not overly rude. You wouldn't want to scare off the angel, or afford Jasper the opportunity to play the victim.
>>
No. 916576 ID: 70df1e

If we can beat Jasper to the angel, we should. Then we can introduce ourselves politely, ask how they're enjoying hell, just make it clear to Jasper that they're occupied so that he'll leave. THEN we can warn her.

If we can't beat Jasper to them... Maybe we can find a smooth way to insert ourselves into the conversation? Introduce ourselves, and if we can steer the conversation towards various foods in hell, we can drop hints about Jasper's eating habits.
>>
No. 916577 ID: c7f906

Split up. Camio, you warn them. Then, call Jasper over.
>>
No. 916580 ID: edfbdc

Split up, but with you approaching the angel and Camio playing defense against Jasper. You're here to make friends, and Camio is grumpy, so it's a perfect plan, and impossible to see through. You could then direct the angel away from Jasper, and try to make that stick so the angel won't allow Jasper to approach later.
>>
No. 916584 ID: 10c408

>>916580
Seconding this. Forewarned is forearmed, jasper's appetite is NOT worth starting a brand new war.

We should be slightly cautious and not give the game away immediately though, or it'll just blow up in our face.
>>
No. 916638 ID: 270774

agreeing with splitting up with camio handling jasper and us handling the angel — i think we’ll do better with them, plus we want to meet new people, and camio will do very well at being offputting to jasper. when relaying this plan, make it clear that you don’t intend to chuck camio into a situation that’s going to be unpleasant to him, but rather affording him an opportunity to be a big bitch to jasper bc he might find that fun.
>>
No. 916656 ID: c0641d

If it's possible to intercept Jasper outright, then it'll be much easier to verbally harass him outright while the angel isn't even part of the conversation. Plus, I'm sure Camio will enjoy not having to play nice with the angel in this event.
>>
No. 916659 ID: 10c408

>>916656
Jasper has NO idea that we're onto him, hate his guts and are planning to shut down his angel buffet problem. And we should keep it that way until we're ready to bring the hammer down.
>>
No. 916817 ID: c1eaac
File 154699722608.png - (126.79KB , 700x600 , 84.png )
916817

"Camio," you say quickly, and continue once Camio turns his head to show that you have his complete attention. "I don't want to send you on an unpleasant errand, but how do you feel about distracting Jasper from that angel?"

To your surprise, Camio gives you a toothy grin. There's a spark of something like mischief in his good eye.

"And you are going to go warn the angel, I suppose," he says, with the air of someone feeling out the endgame of a plan.

"I am," you agree. "Like I said, I'd rather avoid being complicit in a diplomatic incident."

"They could be the angel he has on his side," Camio points out mildly.

He's not wrong, but you have a gut feeling that any angel in cahoots with Jasper wouldn't look quite so lost at court, or dress in such out-of-style fashion. Chances are good that the angel is here for another reason, and Jasper just happened to see them from across the room.

"I'll warn them carefully, then," you say. "Now, go and be a distraction before he beats me to them."

"As you wish," he says wryly, and limps off into the thick of things.
>>
No. 916818 ID: c1eaac
File 154699724091.png - (148.22KB , 700x600 , 85.png )
916818

You wait until you see Camio's gold-tipped horns bobbing steadily towards Jasper to start approaching the angel, making sure to come from an angle where they can clearly see you coming. You wouldn't want to startle them, or make them think you were trying to do anything untoward. They blink at you as you draw closer, apparently not expecting to be approached for conversation.

"I don't think we've met," you say smoothly, offering them your hand. "Prince Glasya-Labolas, son of Heth, at your service. It's rare to see an angel so unattended at court. You aren't a diplomat, are you?"

"Oh! No - no, I'm not. I'm sorry," they say, looking startled despite your best efforts. You might be exasperated, if they weren't so cute. "Were you looking for one?"

"Just looking for a conversation. Like I said, angels are rare around these parts. I wouldn't want you to be approached by anyone untoward." You smile, doing your best to put them at ease. It seems to work, at least a little, and they take your hand gently in both of theirs.

"I'm Eae." They peer at you shyly, probably trying to puzzle out what you actually came over here for. You don't blame them - demons are known to have ulterior motives. "Are you really a prince?"

"Well -" you say, about to launch into a lengthy explanation of exactly how removed from the throne you are, when you suddenly hear the distinct flesh-on-flesh sound of someone being punched behind you.
>>
No. 916819 ID: c1eaac
File 154699725301.png - (162.90KB , 700x600 , 86.png )
916819

You spin on your heel, and grimace at the scene. Jasper is on his stomach on the ground, with Camio kneeling over him, straddling his back to make sure he can't get up. Camio has one of Jasper's arms twisted behind his back in a way that looks painful, and is rubbing Jasper's nose against the marble floor, leaving streaks of blood behind. You're pretty sure you can see blood on Camio's knuckles, too. The nobles on your side of the room are shrunk back from the two of them, but honestly, no one looks particularly horrified or inclined to break it up.

"Camio," you say, and his head snaps up to look at you, his good eye intense. You swallow. "What are you doing?"

"Teaching a lesson," he says, his voice a low, pleased rumble. "Lord Abbadon touches things that do not belong to him."

Jasper lifts his head to protest, blood streaming from both nostrils, and Camio pushes it gently back towards the floor. Behind you, Eae makes a noise of distress. Maybe you should have been more specific when you asked for a distraction...
>>
No. 916823 ID: 7e9c89

“it’s alright, eae. camio won’t hurt you — he’s a ‘friend’.”
>>
No. 916824 ID: 986b2d

camio marry me

Best to get Camio off of Jasper. His lesson is PROBABLY learned. And apologize PROFUSELY to Eae.
>>
No. 916826 ID: 270774

camio you ridiculous and deeply attractive creature. as dashing as you look right now, you could maybe reel it in a little. you’re scaring our new friend!
>>
No. 916828 ID: 10c408

oh lord we're awful at this.

Uhhh.

Okay. Damage control. We're gonna have to throw Camip under the bus a bit and apologize profusely to him later.

Facepalm, now.

Tell Camio that this isn't quite what you meant when you asked if he could in Jasper's way a little bit and if he has a grudge against lord abaddon then the two of them need to take it outside.

Yes I know this means throwing camio under the bus but we are going to profusely apologize to him later. The Plan is more important and jasper putting two and two together and discovering that we're unto him is going to quash it before it can really go anywhere.
>>
No. 916832 ID: 70df1e

>>916828
do not throw camio under the bus he will never forgive us

honestly hes doing a great job! we could tell eae what he's REALLY doing - 'oh, we saw jasper headed over here and the thing is, he has a FONDNESS for ANGELS and FINE FOOD that tend to come together in a very illegal way and that camio is distracting him so that we could warn eae.' angels like honesty right? and the truth is actually a pretty good reason to be talking to her
>>
No. 916842 ID: 5a8a97

>>916823
Yeah, the thin line between honesty and bullshit is our best bet. Letting Eae know that Camio is actually trying to look out for them and that Jasper was looking to "take advantage" is probably a good idea.
>>
No. 916846 ID: 10c408

>>916832
Could've sworn we were trying to prevent a new war from occurring, not jumping on the first opportunity to blab about the secret, to an angel no less, in front of almost the entire court that's paying attention to us/jasper/camio/eae
>>
No. 916862 ID: c0641d

“Specifically, I wanted to warn you against untowards such as him. The one on the floor, not the one on top. Wouldn’t want a fine young innocent like you to get mired in any unsavory business, now.” single clap “Camio, do you think we can take this business with Jasper outside? Regardless of what he did, I’m sure we can work it out without raising a scene. Well, raising more of a scene.” Give a good eye-roll when Aea isn’t looking to show you aren’t seriously scolding him.
>>
No. 916899 ID: 1bd5e1

CAMIO I LOVE YOU

this first: >>916823

okay absolutely no throwing camio under the bus. none. NO???? one, he won't forgive us. two, we outrank him by so fucking much it would be absolutely terrible. it would be a betrayal. we would be using him. not to mention that jasper outranks him too - what we absolutely have to do is protect camio. if our reputation suffers, we'll recover. if his reputation suffers, he could be executed.

THAT BEING SAID "ah, don't worry mx eae, camio is a trusted friend - he won't harm you. unlike [distastefully] Lord Abbadon, who can't keep his hands to himself."



....honestly we should introduce eae to arty,somehow.
>>
No. 916900 ID: 10c408

>>916832
>>916899
as much as jasper deserves being on the floor under Camio's grip, Jasper most likely outranks Camio. And I'm VERY sure that it's going to be more than our personal reputation that'll suffer if we own up to our hand in this turn of events. And that's not accounting for tipping our hand to jasper that we KNOW what he does to angels and we're onto him.

So is this REALLY the hill we want to die on? I really don't think so.
>>
No. 916910 ID: 1bd5e1

>>916900
The fact that Jasper outranks Camio is definitely why WE cant let Camio high and dry!! What will happen to him if we dont get him under our protection? :(
>>
No. 916942 ID: 158da5

>>916910
Helping Camio doesn't require admitting our plan and ruining everything.
>>
No. 916989 ID: df855e

make sure to give your most apologetic, kind, sweetest smile ever...as much as camio doesnt deserve being thrown under the bus, i think our priority should be the angel that we are scaring really bad
>>
No. 917052 ID: b1b4f3

"That's very distracting, could you keep it down?"

Wear it on your sleeve.
>>
No. 917889 ID: ee3259

Tell the angel you're sorry they had to see that and pardon you for a moment. Break Camio and Jasper up and ask if Camio wants to talk about what Jasper did/said just now to put him so on edge.

If it would help at all, apologize for the act and/or the scene to Jasper, but give Camio some dap for punching him lol
>>
No. 917891 ID: c375e8

ok well we need to have camio's back enough he doesn't get into too much trouble, he has ornias's favor as well as ours but i don't know how good of an idea THAT was on his part.

say something comforting to the angel, maybe send them arty's way if he's free, and let's go back him up
>>
No. 917921 ID: c1eaac
File 154761541376.png - (200.86KB , 700x600 , 87.png )
917921

"Ah - it's alright, Lord Camio doesn't mean you any harm," you assure Eae, a little worried about their noise of distress. They look no more startled than they did when you originally approached them, but no less, either. Maybe startled is just their baseline. "He's a friend. Unlike Lord Abbadon, who apparently can't keep his hands to himself. I am sorry you had to see that, though. Could you excuse me for a moment?"

Eae nods, their lips pressed tightly together.
>>
No. 917922 ID: c1eaac
File 154761542621.png - (239.04KB , 700x600 , 88.png )
917922

You move swiftly towards Camio and Jasper, who are already separated just by virtue of Camio getting to his feet and leaving Jasper face-down on the floor. You wonder for a moment if Jasper is even breathing, and get your answer a moment later when he struggles into an upright position, leaving even more blood smeared on the floor.

"You couldn't have taken that outside?" you ask Camio, a little wryly, being sure to keep your voice low. The other nobles seem to have lost interest now that the fight is over, and are slowly returning to their own conversations, but you never know who might be eavesdropping.

"You wanted a distraction," he says. "I had a bone to pick. It worked out."

"What bone?" you ask, entirely mystified as to what he's talking about. Clearly he and Jasper have history that he neglected to mention.

Camio reaches up to wipe the blood from his face with a gloved hand, looking away from you. "Personal business. Private."

"I don't see how I'm supposed to get to know you better if you won't tell me anything," you huff, folding your arms over your chest. It really is a little annoying - for him to offer nothing about himself, then chide you for only knowing rumors and gossip. "And it's clearly not that private if you're willing to fight Jasper in front of the whole court for it!"
>>
No. 917923 ID: c1eaac
File 154761543569.png - (146.92KB , 700x600 , 89.png )
917923

Camio's good eye narrows, and he opens his mouth to retort, before abruptly closing it again, his gaze fixed on something just over your shoulder. You feel a presence behind you suddenly that you very much doubt is Eae.
>>
No. 917924 ID: c1eaac
File 154761544603.png - (236.83KB , 700x600 , 90.png )
917924

"Well, well," His Highness Satan, Commander of Hell's Armies, Prince of Lies, the Great Morningstar says. "Fighting in court, are we? That's a new one for you, Jasper."

"Your Highness," Jasper sputters. "Lord Camio -"

"Ah, ah. I don't want to hear it from you. Or from Lord Camio, though I am very fond of hearing him speak," Satan says, which elicits a roll of Camio's eyes. You almost smile - but then Satan's attention is on you, and he's stepping closer to you suddenly, his eyes shiny.

"You're one of Heth's kids, aren't you?" he asks. "And you were standing here the whole time, yeah? You want to tell me what went down?"
>>
No. 917925 ID: 7e9c89

oh boy. tell him the truth but, stick to camio’s side! i dont think he did anything wrong even if he wont tell us stuff
>>
No. 917927 ID: c375e8

uhhhh holy shit. i don't think lying to the king is a good idea so... we wanted to keep jasper away from eae but it got a bit out of control
>>
No. 917930 ID: df855e

maybe with your explanation on how you didnt anticipate this and that you asked camio for a small favour that went a little out of hand but isnt his full fault, try and keep tensions down by keeping that cool ball rolling like what you had with eae. you didn't see the whole thing but you know that he wasnt going to go farther than he already has. stay close to camio if you already havent to show him you're on his side literally!
>>
No. 917931 ID: 952d82

camio will be fine cuz satan likes him right?? just say they were uh. working some things out.
>>
No. 917941 ID: 986b2d

Don't LIE, but throwing Camio under the bus is not conducive to getting in his pants later. (Or, you know, maintaining a good reputation around court.)

"Lord Camio and I were just rescuing our angelic guest here from Lord Jasper's poor company. Things got a tad out of hand, but everything is under control now."
>>
No. 917942 ID: 158da5

>>917941
Yeah this is basically what I want. I'm not adverse to lying, but a half truth is the best kind of lie!
>>
No. 917951 ID: 10c408

Yeah, let's go and half-lie to the freaking king of demons, in his own court, to his face. Nothing can possibly go wrong with this idea.

"Court intrigue gone terribly wrong, [honoriffic]. I asked Camio to distract Jasper so I could talk to the new arrival first. Next thing I know Jasper's on the ground."

Throw yourself (and also camio) under the bus, nothing good will come from trying to bend the truth now.
>>
No. 917952 ID: 270774

satan probably LIKES insubordination and bad attitudes. he’s not gonna like it if we bow and scrape.
>>
No. 917953 ID: 270774

>>917941
i hit reply too soon but what i meant is this is probably fine. we can shittalk jasper to his face, he’ll think it’s funny.
>>
No. 917954 ID: 70df1e

>>917952
>>917953

please shittalk jasperto satan's face. "what did jasper do" "well, your highness, he's just kind of a bastard in general so he had it coming"
>>
No. 917962 ID: 924d05

>>917953
PLEASE SHITTALK JASPER TO HIS FACE
JUST
OWN IT
ABSOLUTELY OWN IT
>>
No. 917965 ID: b1b4f3

>>917941
This is good.
>>
No. 917967 ID: ee3259

On your way to introduce yourself to an angel, you asked Camio if he wouldn't mind taking Jasper's mind off things. You did not specify how.
>>
No. 918151 ID: 209326

based on the fact that satan likes camio, who is super disrespectful to him, we can conclude that satan likes a lil playful rebellion
also this is hell its not like violence is bad here
so
SHITTALK JASPER
>>
No. 918183 ID: c0641d

"I asked Camio to distract Jasper while I led our new angelic arrival away from him - wouldn't look good to have him swipe her like that during your party after all. To be fair, I never specified how he should go about doing it, but I like to think it all worked out rather nicely." Kick Jasper yourself when he starts to stir.
>>
No. 918445 ID: c1eaac
File 154802678531.png - (218.97KB , 700x600 , 91.png )
918445

"I didn't think it would be especially prudent to let Lord Jasper meet a new angel guest of the court, Your Highness," you say, carefully polite as you try and figure out how to handle this. Satan isn't the biggest fan of your family - your uncle definitely tried to assassinate him once - but given who he is, and the way he treats Camio, he probably likes at least a little insubordination. It's a delicate line to try and walk. "I asked Lord Camio to distract him as a favor, and didn't specify how. Things got a bit out of hand."

"I'd say," Satan says, with a dark chuckle. "Now, don't get me wrong - I do love the initiative here, and I do appreciate the lack of potential diplomatic incident, buuuuut..." He trails off, his eyes sliding from your face to Camio's. "A distraction doesn't mean a fight, does it?"

"No, Your Highness," Camio says through his teeth.

"And Lord Camio was the one to strike the first blow, was he not?" Satan asks, turning back to you.

You swallow. "Well yes, but -"
>>
No. 918446 ID: c1eaac
File 154802680672.png - (78.19KB , 700x600 , 92.png )
918446

"Lord Camio," Satan says. There's a certain, amused sort of patience in his voice that you don't think you like. "Give me your hands, please."

Camio rolls his eyes, but hands his cane off to you to hold, and stretches his hands out towards Satan. Slowly, Satan peels off Camio's gloves, then holds one of Camio's hands briefly up to his mouth to kiss it. Camio makes a noise of complaint low in his throat.

"Your Highness," he grumbles, but Satan shushes him.

"Keep your hands out, please."

He does so. For a moment, you wonder where Satan is going with this. And then, suddenly, Satan is holding a sword.
>>
No. 918447 ID: c1eaac
File 154802681967.png - (40.62KB , 700x600 , 93.png )
918447

And then he's cutting off Camio's hands.
>>
No. 918448 ID: c1eaac
File 154802683746.png - (211.57KB , 700x600 , 94.png )
918448

"There we go," Satan says, over the meaty sound of the hands hitting the marble floor. His sword is already gone, vanished somewhere into the ether. "Jasper's blood is no longer on your hands. You're off the hook."

"A warning would have been nice," Camio says. He doesn't look like he's in pain, but it's hard to tell. His hands are already regrowing themselves, though, muscle and bone sprouting from the stumps of his wrists and knitting themselves together at an accelerated rate.

"Ah, but then it would have ruined the drama of it all," Satan replies, with a wicked sort of grin. "And the cleverness. I thought it was clever. Very King Solomon." He glances to you, and laughs when he sees your mouth agape. "Don't you think it was clever, Hethson?"
>>
No. 918449 ID: c375e8

god i would have liked a warning too

no permanent damage was done so it was cool, i guess
>>
No. 918450 ID: 986b2d

UHHHHHHHH.

TOUGH! We want to back up Camio, but it probably would be best not to insubordinate to Satan while he's still wielding a sword.

"Very clever, Your Highness." Delivered VERY uncomfortably.

We can apologize to Camio later.
>>
No. 918452 ID: b1b4f3

Hold out your hands as well.
>>
No. 918457 ID: 1f1af9

"Clever enough to be worthy of applause, if Lord Camio hadn't already just given you a hand."

Fingerguns optional.
>>
No. 918459 ID: 270774

>>918452
this, obviously.

would we be showing off for the sake of chasing camio dick? yes, which is fine
>>
No. 918460 ID: 93a90e

oh my god PLEASE make that pun, also he kind of is clever and hot. its not bad to think that since camio isnt fazed right... normal demonic shenanigans
>>
No. 918461 ID: 70df1e

Pick Camio's old(?) hands up off the floor and then turn to Satan and say: "I don't know, would you like me to give you a hand?" Offer him Camio's hands.
>>
No. 918462 ID: 10c408

>>918450
Gonna go with this. We don't know Satan well enough to assume he'll enjoy earth humor and Camio is clearly uncomfortable with the apparently one-sided relationship that Satan is foisting upon him.

And don't correct him referring to you as hethson. That is a trap.
>>
No. 918468 ID: 158da5

"Very clever way to HANDle the situation." Ha ha ha ha, you are having fun.
>>
No. 918485 ID: c0641d

Roll your eyes and smile. "Very dramatic, for sure. Wowie. Should I offer up my tongue for my own carelessness too, oh great and mighty lord prince Satan?" Polite, but in a playful tone so we can share Camio's stance in H A V I N G B I G M O O D.
>>
No. 918510 ID: c211e4

>>918459
BIG DICK ENERGY
>>
No. 918518 ID: 986b2d

>>918452
WAIT I'VE CHANGED MY MIND DO THIS INSTEAD
>>
No. 918528 ID: c1eaac
File 154811157149.png - (175.28KB , 700x600 , 95.png )
918528

"Very clever, Your Highness," you say, with a wry sort of lilt to your voice. "I would give you a hand, if Lord Camio hadn't just given you two."

There's a long silence, during which both Camio and Satan stare at you.

"Hell's teeth," Camio says, eventually, a smile lingering around his lips. He takes his cane back from you, shaking his head, looking almost disappointed. "That joke was awful."

Satan bursts into laughter, very nearly doubling over from it. He's wiping tears from his eyes when he finally straightens up, and he claps you on the shoulder, hard, baring all of his fangs at you in a grin.

"Camio's right!" he gasps, apparently delighted. "That was really good! Holy shit!"
>>
No. 918529 ID: c1eaac
File 154811158339.png - (74.84KB , 700x600 , 96.png )
918529

Satan takes a deep breath, then, composing himself in a matter of moments, before turning to address Jasper and the rest of the nearby nobles.

"Lord Camio's hands are free of his transgression, now, so I don't want to see any of you talking badly about him for what happened here," he says, sternly - in a tone that almost dares anyone here to cross him. "And Jasper, you can go. Just make sure I don't catch you near that angel, or any of our other guests from Heaven."

"Of course, Your Highness," Jasper says, bowing as he backs away into the crowd.
>>
No. 918530 ID: c1eaac
File 154811160824.png - (283.34KB , 700x600 , 97.png )
918530

"Anyway," Satan says, after a beat, turning back towards you. "I don't think we've been properly acquainted. I'm the king. Satan."

"Well, yes, Your Highness," you stammer. "I know that."

"Right, of course," he says, waving off the objection. "And you're a Hethson. There are so many of you I can never keep you straight. Remind me which one you are?" He pauses, then glances between you and Camio. "As long as I'm not interrupting anything between you and Lord Camio, of course. I'd hate to overstay my welcome."

Satan is being awfully nice to you, considering the tension between him and your family (on account of the whole assassination thing). You still don't know what all of that was about, exactly - it was far before your time, and you don't see your uncle much. But maybe Satan has some ulterior motive here? Or he's just being capricious, as you've heard he can be. Or maybe he doesn't have a grudge anymore...but that seems out of the ordinary, for a demon.

Either way, best to proceed with caution, even if your bad joke did seem to win you some favor.
>>
No. 918533 ID: c211e4

glasya-labolas, the party sibling
>>
No. 918534 ID: c375e8

we're glas and we're just hangin out! i think it's fine to be friendly right now even with the assassination thing, starting a fight with satan seems like a really bad idea for obvious reasons and we obviously don't want to kill him
>>
No. 918535 ID: 7e9c89

that could have gone SO much worse. let’s be a little flirty! introduce urself, drop hints ur looking for some fun, he seems to be amused by us so we can afford some lighthearted banter! “of course you’re not interrupting, your majesty, i’m learning so much about how to handle court!”
>>
No. 918537 ID: 7e9c89

i didnt actually realize i accidentally punned again. mYbe dont wear the hand thing out but if anyone else has a good one..
>>
No. 918538 ID: 10c408

It sounds like he's being capricious. Explain that you are around about in the middle out of all of your siblings and figured it was time to get out from under your mother's shadow.

Don't ask about the assassination thing. Or bring it up. Even if it was before your time talking about it is still a Bad Idea.
>>
No. 918559 ID: 158da5

>>918538
Agreed with all of this, but start with "Well, I'm Glasya-labolas. Glas to my friends."
>>
No. 918574 ID: 70df1e

tell satan that youre the hethson with all the hand jokes. youre just getting a HANDle on court but as long as you dont get too HANDsy with anyone, you think you'll be fine. Satan did just teach you a valuable lesson about keeping your HANDS to yourself.
>>
No. 922586 ID: c1eaac
File 155072637803.png - (120.50KB , 700x600 , 98.png )
922586

"Of course you're not interrupting, your highness," you say, carefully maintaining a friendly smile. If Satan is amused by you, then you're probably out of the woods for the time being, so it shouldn't hurt. "I'm Glasya-Labolas. Glas, if you prefer it. I'm one of the princes. A middle child."

"Right, right. Glasya-Labolas," Satan says, as though he had any idea what your name was before this. You highly doubt he keeps tabs on every demon in Hell - he did just own up to the fact that he finds you and most of your siblings essentially interchangeable.

"So, a middle child, huh?" he asks, before you can get another word in edgewise. "What brings you to court? Looking for marriage prospects? You might want to set your sights a little higher than Lord Camio." He drops his voice into a sort of stage murmur. "I don't think he's exactly the marrying type."

Camio snorts. You glance at him, expecting agitation, only to see him still looking gently amused. Somehow, attacking Jasper seems to have improved his mood.

"I'm just trying to make a name for myself beyond my mother," you say, both because it's true and because you're not sure you want Satan to know anything you think about Camio. It might be better that way, for now. "And I have my own estate now, so I'd better start courting eventually, before all the eligible nobles of the court are snatched up."

Satan laughs. "You're witty! I like that in a demon."
>>
No. 922587 ID: c1eaac
File 155072641372.png - (87.56KB , 700x600 , 99.png )
922587

A soft noise from behind you alerts you suddenly to the fact that Eae is still standing there. They look guilty to have interrupted, twisting the fabric of their dress in their hands for a moment before speaking.

"I don't mean to be rude, but -"

"You aren't being rude," you assure them.

"Well, that demon is coming over here, and they don't look very happy," they say, a little miserably.

You turn to look.
>>
No. 922588 ID: c1eaac
File 155072646234.png - (27.79KB , 700x600 , 100.png )
922588

"CAMIO SON OF SEERE"
>>
No. 922589 ID: c1eaac
File 155072648449.png - (175.09KB , 700x600 , 101.png )
922589

WHAT IN THE SINS' NAMES ARE YOU DOING MAKING A SCENE IN FRONT OF THE COURT LIKE THAT"
>>
No. 922590 ID: c1eaac
File 155072649146.png - (232.75KB , 700x600 , 102.png )
922590

Uh oh.
>>
No. 922591 ID: 986b2d

We love Camio and all but this is terrifying and if he can be between us and Or then by ALL means.
>>
No. 922592 ID: 810fd3

can you say 'uh oh.' They about to drag camio and glas out of here by the ears lmao. I suggest you step out of Or's path, maybe closer to satan tbh, seems safer.
>>
No. 922593 ID: c1212a

Ask if that's a rhetorical question. Take the hit for Camio.
>>
No. 922594 ID: 2af340

>>922591
seconded :v
>>
No. 922595 ID: c375e8

well we could deflect satan a bit but i think we're fucked here, folks!
>>
No. 922596 ID: 70df1e

> glance around frantically for the other angel that fixed Murmur's memory earlier because it sure seems like we need him right now.
>>
No. 922598 ID: 70df1e

alternately just straight up drag camio behind satan. hes the king of hell cower behind him and hope his powerful aura spares you. that or that ornias doesnt see you behind his big horns
>>
No. 922599 ID: 270774

>>922598
>>
No. 922602 ID: 10c408

EXIT STAGE LEFT. TAKE EAE WITH YOU. ABSCOND! ABANDON SHIP! GET THE LEAD OUT!
>>
No. 922604 ID: 158da5

Thank Eae for the heads up. And then >>922593 . Say that it was your fault, that you should have been clearer and that it all worked out. It'll be a memory in a matter of weeks.
>>
No. 922648 ID: 7e9c89

eae giving us a headsup is something we should remembwr and thank them for when we’re not crisis mode chsksl. hiding sounds great
>>
No. 922669 ID: c0641d

pokerfacepokerfacepokerface "What scene?" POKERFACE INTENSIFIES

If she objects; "No, seriously, this 'scene' you describe officially, literally didn't happen. It's an un-scene; as in, so it was un-seen by everyone, by order of the court. Stop being silly and relax. Lord Prince Satan, Lord Camio, do you have any notion to offer to these fancies?"
>>
No. 923151 ID: c1eaac
File 155105908616.png - (178.27KB , 700x600 , 103.png )
923151

In the moments before Ornias reaches the small group you're standing in, you duck behind Satan in hopes that he might shield you from their wrath. Camio gives you a quizzical sort of sidelong look - you worry that he might be angry, but then he inclines his head slightly in a nod, like he understands.
>>
No. 923152 ID: c1eaac
File 155105910111.png - (159.29KB , 700x600 , 104.png )
923152

"WELL," Ornias says as they finally come to a stop in front of you, their voice shrill. "What do you have to say for yourself, Camio?"

Satan clears his throat. "Duchess Bathinson, if you'd only relax for -"

Ornias turns to him with murder in their eyes. "No."

"Perfectly understandable," Satan wheezes, like he's just been punched in the throat.
>>
No. 923153 ID: c1eaac
File 155105911725.png - (119.32KB , 700x600 , 105.png )
923153

"Glasya-Labolas asked me to provide a distraction to stop Jasper from speaking to an angel," Camio says, as Or turns back towards him, tapping their foot impatiently on the marble floor. "He didn't say what sort of distraction. I took it upon myself to choose."

"I see," Ornias says. They look slightly less like they're about to murder one of the three of you, but still awfully annoyed. "Well, I think it's only fair to take you back with me before you decide to cause any more distractions."

Camio shrugs, an amused little smile twitching at his lips. "As you wish."

"And you," Ornias says, catching your eye over Satan's shoulder. "You're going to have to learn not to give him any ideas."

You press your lips together and nod, figuring it's best not to say anything.
>>
No. 923154 ID: c1eaac
File 155105913377.png - (282.84KB , 700x600 , 106.png )
923154

"So," Satan says, as Ornias drags Camio off to rejoin their group with Eligos and Murmur. "That went well."

"It certainly...went," you agree hesitantly, stepping out from behind him.

"And now you're stuck with me," he says, with a laugh. "Unless you have something better to do. I wouldn't be offended."
>>
No. 923155 ID: c1eaac
File 155105914241.png - (25.49KB , 700x600 , 107.png )
923155

You smile politely as you consider your answer, and glance over to where Eae was just standing, in hopes of thanking them for warning you about Ornias. But they aren't there anymore. In fact, you don't see them anywhere nearby. You think you catch a glimpse of them heading out of the room, though, into one of the hallways. They seem to be following someone who has them by the hand, but you can't tell if they're going willingly or not.

> Stay with Satan.
> Find Eae.
> Something else?
>>
No. 923157 ID: 70df1e

tell satan you spy with your little eye.... an angel being kidnapped in his court! you both might as well investigate together. it never hurts to have the king of hell on your side
>>
No. 923158 ID: c375e8

well it's no use keeping eae from jasper and not going to check if they're ok now. promise a rain check to satan and let's follow
>>
No. 923198 ID: 2af340

follow that angel!! it'd only be polite to say thank you! (also, maybe flutter your eyelashes at satan a lil bit ;3c ;3c ;3c)
>>
No. 923209 ID: 158da5

>>923158
Exactly.
>>
No. 923214 ID: 10c408

>>923158
I agree with this, hopefully it's not the amnesia angel dragging Eae away.
>>
No. 923245 ID: 23b9a0

take satan by the hand and lessgo.
>>
No. 923246 ID: 23b9a0

>> 923157 was supposed to preface my last comment
>>
No. 923265 ID: 270774

>>923157
i like this plan. let’s get into mischief together. maybe say the kidnapping thing jokingly enough that if it’s NOT jasper, or if it is and we can’t prove he had ill intentions, we don’t look like we were swinging baseless accusations around
>>
No. 923373 ID: c1eaac
File 155114859863.png - (190.31KB , 700x600 , 108.png )
923373

"As much as I would like to, Your Highness, there's someone else I'd like to catch up with first," you say as politely as possible. There's no point in trying to keep Eae with Jasper just to let them get abducted immediately afterwards. Assuming they are being abducted. You're not sure, but better safe than sorry, right?

"No sweat," Satan says, waving off your manners with a sense of dismissal that only the extremely rich and noble can afford to have. "We'll see each other again sometime, I'm sure."

"Of course, Your Highness," you assure him, and set off for the door you saw Eae disappearing through.
>>
No. 923374 ID: c1eaac
File 155114860715.png - (78.89KB , 700x600 , 109.png )
923374

You step into a long hallway with no Eae in sight. Undeterred, you keep walking, figuring that there's only really one way Eae could have gone - until you get to the end of the hall, where it splits into two branching passageways. Both are dimly lit. You think you hear footsteps from farther down the left hall, and you can definitely see two demons lounging and chatting in the right one, possibly intending on getting intimate with one another.

> Continue down the left hall.
> Ask the demons if they've seen anyone.
> Something else?
>>
No. 923392 ID: b1b4f3

Option 2.
>>
No. 923398 ID: 270774

it shouldn’t take too long to ask if they’ve seen anyone. we should go down the left hallway even if they say no, though
>>
No. 923401 ID: 70df1e

check out the demons. Maybe you know them.
>>
No. 923404 ID: 2af340

>>923398
+1
>>
No. 923410 ID: 483287

ask and then left! maze tactics should work okay for a castle?
>>
No. 923471 ID: c1eaac
File 155122838168.png - (201.37KB , 700x600 , 110.png )
923471

"Excuse me," you say as politely and as softly as you can, trying not to draw any more unwarranted attention to the two demons in the hallway. One of them glances towards you with idle interest, but neither responds right away. You don't recognize either of them off the top of your head, but they're definitely nobles, and not servants.

"Have you seen an angel around here?" you ask. "Maybe with someone else?"

"There's a few angels around here," the demon looking at you says, sniffing with contempt. "A few too many, if you ask me. Ever since the war -"

"I meant, have you seen an angel come through here," you clarify, hastily. "Through this hallway."

"Sure," the other demon says, finally turning her attention towards you. "I think I saw them a few minutes ago. They went that way."

She gestures towards the hallway to your left.
>>
No. 923472 ID: c1eaac
File 155122838983.png - (92.43KB , 700x600 , 111.png )
923472

You nod your thanks at the couple, and head down the left hall, chasing the sound of footsteps as they get farther and farther away. Satan's estate must be huge, you think, for someone to sound so close and yet be so far away that you haven't spotted them yet.

Your chosen path twists and turns and eventually ends at a fork that leads to what looks like two very different, larger halls. One is...you're not sure. It looks like an atrium of some sort, but the ceiling is so high that from here, you can't quite make out what's inside. You can see decorative columns, at least, and a shiny marble floor. The other is down a short flight of stairs and looks to be filled with weaponry, suits of armor, and other paraphernalia from the war.

You can hear voices in the distance, but can't judge what direction they're coming from.

> Travel through the atrium.
> Travel through the armory.
> Turn back.
> Something else?
>>
No. 923473 ID: c375e8

call their name, maybe? if we don't get a response then i'd say atrium.
>>
No. 923498 ID: 714b14

armory!!! COOL SWORD TIME!!!!
>>
No. 923499 ID: b1b4f3

Atrium.
>>
No. 923508 ID: 2af340

depending on who might've taken eae we could use a cool sword
it's armory time babey!!
>>
No. 923509 ID: 70df1e

atrium.

i dont think jasper is gutsy enough to try to murder an angel in satans own mansion. for one who would be there to like, prepare/cook eae? i think the armory is out because of that.

assuming it is jasper i mean. we dont know for 100% certain i just dont trust him
>>
No. 923514 ID: 483287

oh armory PLEASE
>>
No. 923515 ID: 158da5

If we're preventing people from leaving with Eae, the atrium is probably the better choice. Armories don't tend to have easy access to exits.
>>
No. 923517 ID: c1eaac
File 155125059984.png - (81.41KB , 700x600 , 112.png )
923517

You step into the atrium.

It's just as large as it looked from the outside, with a high, arched ceiling that looks to be made of windows, to let the sun stream in. You're a little surprised this room doesn't get used more for social functions - it's certainly beautiful.

As you look up towards the windows, you notice the feathered decorations ringing the uppermost border of the room. You almost mistake them for taxidermy birds at first, until you work out what you're actually seeing.

Wings. Angel wings. Enough to make a complete ring around the room, stretched end to end and pinned up to the walls. The eyes on them - you've never seen eyes on angel wings before, ever - are all open.

All looking at you.
>>
No. 923518 ID: c1eaac
File 155125060979.png - (281.75KB , 700x600 , 113.png )
923518

It must be a trick of the light.

Don't you have something more pressing to do, anyway?

> Continue on.
> Turn back.
> Recall the fate of the seraphim.
>>
No. 923519 ID: 70df1e

> Recall the fate of the seraphim.

wasnt that angel earlier a seraphim? the one who helped us out with murmur??
>>
No. 923520 ID: 70df1e

wait i forgot we dont remember him so let me rephrase my suggestion: hey glas do these wings remind you of anything
>>
No. 923521 ID: c375e8

we've seen eyes on angel wings just once before. recall the fate of the seraphim
>>
No. 923533 ID: 158da5

I want to find Eae. Continue on.
>>
No. 923539 ID: 7e9c89

recall the seraphim!!!!
>>
No. 923585 ID: 2af340

>recall the fate of the seraphim
>>
No. 923612 ID: c1eaac
File 155130973177.png - (208.31KB , 700x600 , 114.png )
923612

As you continue through the atrium, you try not to look at the wings, and distract yourself by recalling a history lesson you once had on the first war with Heaven.

The seraphim were watcher angels, guardians appointed by God, and it was considered good fortune to have one in a battalion during wartime. The eyes on their wings let them see around themselves at all angles, making them both unmatchable defenders and excellent spies. It also made them a target. The first one in a group that demons would aim for. Their wings were distinct, and demons often took them as a trophy, an ornament to hang on the mantle.

The ranks of the seraphim dwindled. The last of them, a group of spies in Hell, were sent to infiltrate the court and bring back intelligence on Satan and his advisors. To steal back documents and letters Satan had brought with him from Heaven, and to keep the angels one step ahead of the demons’ maneuvers. They were caught, and held as prisoners of war for some time before Satan ordered them to be put to death.

According to your tutor, their wings used to be displayed on the outside of the palace - a taunt from Satan to Heaven. He probably moved them inside, once the war was over.

God never appointed any other angels to the position. Maybe out of fear for their lives, or because the seraphim had been an experiment to begin with, and the experiment had failed. But that was the last of the seraphim, so far as anyone knows.
>>
No. 923613 ID: c1eaac
File 155130973966.png - (136.05KB , 700x600 , 115.png )
923613

Still a bit lost in thought, you arrive on the other side of the atrium, to find yourself once again faced with a choice. The entrance to your left looks as though it dead-ends in a small, darkened library with no one inside. The passageway to your right is just that - a long passageway, with doors that presumably lead to other rooms in the palace.

You hear voices, and an airy laugh, from somewhere down the hall.

> Investigate the library.
> Proceed down the hall.
> Turn back.
> Something else?
>>
No. 923627 ID: 2af340

head into the library
it's a dead end so we can turn back easily if it turns out nobody's in there! :Oc
>>
No. 923632 ID: 270774

yeah, library is an easy check so we might as well make sure we don’t miss anything
>>
No. 923637 ID: 986b2d

Yeah I also vote library!
>>
No. 923652 ID: 70df1e

Focus! We're on a mission here! Follow the voices to try to find Eae. We have no time for empty library shenanagins!
>>
No. 923672 ID: 10c408

Hallway. We can't afford to waste time like this.
>>
No. 923874 ID: 98c63e

library!!! more lore..
>>
No. 924090 ID: c1eaac
File 155163672408.png - (96.64KB , 700x600 , 116.png )
924090

You duck into the library, just to make sure no one's in there. It's actually more of a small study, and everything seems to be coated in a fine layer of dust, like no one's been in here in decades, or maybe even centuries. That's normal, you suppose. Most noble demons don't use every room in their estates, or they section off certain wings for guests, or servants to stay in.

Most of the walls are lined with bookshelves, with the exception of the far wall, which houses an elaborate writing desk. There's nothing on the desk except for a stack of what looks like blank sheets of parchment, and a bottle of ink. Above the desk are four paintings - well, three paintings, and a frame with a damaged canvas in it.
>>
No. 924091 ID: c1eaac
File 155163674084.png - (183.15KB , 700x700 , 117.png )
924091

You draw a bit closer to the desk, and slowly realize that the three intact paintings each depict one of the archangels. You recognize Michael at the upper left, and Raphael, dressed in demon fashion, underneath of her. You have to assume the upper right painting is of Gabriel, though you've never seen them in person.

The desk seems to have drawers that you could rifle through if you wished, unless that would be pushing your luck. You're pretty sure Satan wouldn't notice if anything in here was missing or out of place, but you're also losing time you could be spending catching up to Eae.

> Snoop.
> Leave.
> Something else?
>>
No. 924107 ID: b1b4f3

>rummage through Satan's desk?
Uhhhh... probably shouldn't.
>>
No. 924116 ID: 70df1e

we're on a time crunch so how about we stuff anything that looks interesting into our pockets and then run down that hallway and we can look at it later?
>>
No. 924138 ID: 57f319

Leave. Snooping is just asking for another conspiracy to worry about and it's best to take those one at a time.
>>
No. 924188 ID: 2af340

>>924116
+1
>>
No. 924190 ID: 73c479

yyeah, I think we should just get going.
>>
No. 924199 ID: 10c408

That's the wrong way to approach this. There are some bets you just don't take and rifling through the demon king's desk and HOPING that he didn't notice it is one of them.

just, leave the library already. We're still trying to find Eae.
>>
No. 924217 ID: 98c63e

i’d LOVE to snoop but we need goodwill at court, and ww need to catch up to eae just in case. let’s hurry
>>
No. 924241 ID: c1eaac
File 155166190378.png - (30.75KB , 700x600 , 118.png )
924241

You decide not to press your luck as far as rifling through Satan's things is concerned. Heading out the door of the library, you make your way down the long hallway full of doors.

You notice that one of the doors at the other end of the hall is ajar, just slightly. There are...concerning noises coming from it. You push it open, just enough to peer inside.
>>
No. 924245 ID: c1eaac
File 155166198568.png - (184.08KB , 700x600 , 119.png )
924245

You see Jasper in the room, first, and he sees you, too. The two of you lock eyes, and you find any words you might have been hoping to say stuck in your throat.
>>
No. 924246 ID: c1eaac
File 155166199311.png - (145.92KB , 700x600 , 120.png )
924246

At least you've found Eae.
>>
No. 924247 ID: c1eaac
File 155166200145.png - (103.17KB , 700x600 , 121.png )
924247

> Help Jasper.
> Close the door.
>>
No. 924250 ID: 2af340

close the door
eae's just having a snack :)
>>
No. 924253 ID: 270774

oh. uh. well.

give a thumbs up before closing the door
>>
No. 924255 ID: 98c63e

.....close the door. maybe apologize for intruding
>>
No. 924256 ID: 57f319

I don't think this is acceptable either. Ask Jasper if he is a cannibal. If yes, by nodding or word, close the door and run for safety. And help.
If no, close the door, remove your jacket, fling open the door and whip your jacket at Eae.
>>
No. 924258 ID: 02e2dc

does this count as irony

i mean i'm all for leaving jasper in the lurch but uh. maybe letting a... man eating angel... lurk around down here is a bad idea. i guess help him
>>
No. 924267 ID: 70df1e

lets help him so that he'll owe us a favor later. as ironic as it is to see him getting eaten by a demon eating angel, it would be like, really bad if we let eae go and it got tied back to us later.

don't fight eae though, just grab jasper and book it.
>>
No. 924268 ID: 3491f3

Im on team "this is fine." Justice.
>>
No. 924271 ID: 10c408

"...Good night, Jasper you reprehensible piece of shit." Close the door and fucking leg it. We're done here.

I guess someone in heaven has been paying attention and sent Eae to have Jasper eliminated.
>>
No. 924272 ID: c375e8

sorry buddy, i don't know if we want to fuck with whatever eae is. let's get out of here
>>
No. 924351 ID: 2a8a08

close the door. veeery slowly. then book it.
>>
No. 924454 ID: c0641d

Leave him to his fate, but don't just keep this to yourself. Go get Satan.
>>
No. 924465 ID: 10c408

>>924454
The whole point of investigating jasper was to prevent a new war with heaven from kicking off because Jasper wouldn't stop eating angels.

If we go and fetch Satan like this- (assuming he isn't already aware somehow) -then Jasper's karmariffic death could still instigate it and that little shit doesn't deserve being responsible for a brand new war.
>>
No. 924495 ID: c1eaac
File 155175748065.png - (83.95KB , 700x600 , 122.png )
924495

You look away, shutting the door as you do so. Maybe this is irony, you think, walking as quickly as possible back towards the court.
>>
No. 924497 ID: c1eaac

CHAPTER ONE COMPLETE

CONTINUE TO CHAPTER TWO: https://tgchan.org/kusaba/quest/res/924496.html
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