Senecio adn Tide II

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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

Mirach
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"Chamomile would be great, thank you," Senecio smiled. "We will join you shortly, we just need to discuss some costume details with Hans."
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

VisAnastasis
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" Yes, give me at least five minutes headstart, and I'll have the table and chairs all ready for you. Tide gifted me quite a pretty friend-shaped tea set in the morning, and I bought a human tablecloth embroidered with flowers today, too, so it's definitely going to be a very satisfactory tea party, " Janus promised determinedly, like a master builder that carefully planned out and collected all materials for a big project. His determination to do well distracted him a bit from his usual terrible anxiety before strangers, thankfully, and after confirming the other two wanted chamomile as well, he gathered the papers from the table, took them with him, and then turned away and with a lighter step went down below the stage to prepare their tea.

When Janus left, Hans's expression relaxed a little from his fixed smile, and he right away turned to Senecio, letting him perceive his concern clearly.
" Hi... Good morning, my most hopeless, silly lemon cake, " he said but that as a greeting, simply and supportingly. " I am in an unreasonably good mood today, so whether it's about costume details or anything else, as long as it doesn't cost more than half my estate, I'll get it for you, " he winked as if trying to break the ice with a lighter tone. " I'm already well prepared for any daylight robbery you may have in mind, so make sure to rob me blind today, deal? Tell me what you need. "
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

Mirach
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"You could put it like that, actually," Senecio murmured. "I indeed came to rob you of something. Your role in the play... I realized I don't want to give it up, it's my biggest and best role. I just need to overcome my fear, and Erdel offered to take a silent role in the play. He can smell any danger from miles away, so I believe that could work."
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

VisAnastasis
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Hans understood right away, and his expression grew more solemn, as he glanced between Senecio and Erdel, before his look fell back on the actor and he shook his head.
" Seine... this barely qualifies as robbery. You can not steal what is yours by right. It is parents' duty to safely keep away dangerous things from their kids so they don't hurt themselves. It's no different from keeping a sharp family sword under lock and key when the child is young. But if a kid is strong enough to handle it... why would I, the coolest parent ever, refuse? " he replied with an innocent tease in his voice, but there was a firm promise of protectiveness in feelings behind it. " I know you're strong enough, and sure, it sucks just a teensy bit that I learned all script by heart and practised a lot already, but if you want it, it's yours. I promised myself that my kid would have whatever he damn wants, anyway, and again, merely my blessing is too little to be deemed robbery... Rob me properly, deal? Since Erdel is helping you out, doe that mean you already made a Being deal for his help, or should I make the deal with him in your name, or pay him the human way? Or should I talk with the King to convince him to borrow Erdel to us for a while? Naturally, costume and some proper daily wage from me is a given, so what role you had in mind for him? A critter at Spirit court or in Spirit army? Nonetheless, at the very least, ask more of me. Leave me without a penny to my name, my precious little thief, " he grinned, corners of his lips twitching upwards as he whispered. " I cleared all my schedule to spend all free time these days until the next play in a theatre, but since you're playing Death again, it's even better - we can just spend all that time figuring this out together. Is there anything specific you need me to do to help? Should I take on and play some small silent role at Spirit court with Erdel too? Or would you rather have me stand close by, with drinks and sweets, to distract you with something nice between breaks? Or do you want me to try to procure you any more supernatural help along the emotional one? If this is what you want, let's do our best together to find a way for you to have it with the least amount of turmoil possible. "
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

Mirach
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"We were thinking that Erdel could play Riversong, supportive at Death's side but silent. Do you think it would be a good idea?" Senecio asked. "We haven't discussed his payment yet, just that he will need a costume. I don’t know about much else, either. Could we have a rehearsal and figure it out during that?"
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

VisAnastasis
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" Hey, you underestimate how many Hans-approval-points you have earned... Even if I thought it wouldn't be a good choice, I'd let you do it. But yes, while the talking role would be a bit of a struggle for musicians and actors due to needed changes they'd have to learn, the silent role is a much easier fit, and Riversong is an easy character to fit in. Beings know he was always there quietly at Death's side, while humans will think of him as a servant or such, so it's the perfect thing to add without changing the plot, " Hans nodded slowly. " We were supposed to have one rehearsal in the evening, and one tomorrow - and the play is the day after tomorrow, with our private Being ball after the play. So, how about trying it out today, after we get back from the whale sighting trip? Any case, yes, we should decide on proper compensation. What would you like, Erdel? " he asked curiously. " Honestly, I'm feeling pretty healthy today, Tide gave me a cute gift this morning, and Janus has been rather adorable the whole day, so I'm in a pretty great mood overall, so you can rip me off, too, I won't mind. "
" No... I'm good. I really want to see the role return to Senecio, so I'm doing it to satisfy my own wish... Besides, to be honest, I've never watched any plays, so I was looking forward to mooching off by coming to watch with Svarik for the first time... But since the premiere is already over, I'll treat this as getting a first-row ticket, " he grinned innocently. " After all, there's no better view than beside Spirit King, isn't there? "
" You two rascals are seriously driving me nuts... I'm really going to have to teach you guys to be properly greedy... When you're ripping someone off, do it properly, " Hans sighed with some frustration and disbelief, but he didn't seem to be in the mood to argue. " Well, suit yourself, but just so you know, my honour as a Spirit King is on the line here. I return a loaf of bread for every morsel I'm given, so if you guys refuse to ask more of me, I'll just find ways to trick you into taking more, got it? I've been mentally preparing to be insanely supportive the whole day, so I kindly request your cooperation. "
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

Mirach
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"If you think it wouldn't be a good choice, I'd like you to tell me, not support me in it regardless," Senecio said. "I'm not too sure about it, so I would prefer to have your opinion and advice instead of blindly thrown support and resources."
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

VisAnastasis
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Hans's feelings stirred slightly - Hans seemed just a little hurt and embarrassed for it, for he knew Senecio could perceive it, and he knew it was a little immature response.
" I... see I may have... phrased myself poorly, " he coughed, looking a little apologetic. " I really appreciate this whole general honesty thing we have going on... I would never lie to you to pretend a bad idea you have is a good one... I do think Riversong is a pretty good choice for an easy extra role that is both recognizable to Beings, and easy to take out without affecting the plot in case Erdel doesn't have time to act. I would naturally tell you if it was a bad idea, but I'm merely saying that even if it was a bad idea, I'd let you do it if you really wanted to. When... when one works hard, does one not deserve a bonus? Look at it as your belated bonus. Basically, I'm giving you an *okay to mess up* free coupon. What I'm saying is... You don't have to be burdened by whether something you do affects our sales or reputation. You can just try it out if you want to, and if it doesn't work out, I can step in and exchange you at any time. It's okay to bail, alright? It's okay to bail any time if you feel you need to, " he promised with quiet but unshakeable determination fit for a Spirit King. " You have worked hard, overtime, to stay alive, and I appreciate the work you put in that more than any acting job you could possibly do... You deserve this bonus fully. You can bail whether right away or at any point, even in the middle of the play, if it's too much - at worst, we can cancel the show and give everyone a refund and freebies to placate them, at best, you can just leave the scene, and I can appear the next moment and continue as Spirit King from there. Who's to say that, having many forms as Beings do, Death did not simply choose to change forms when he felt like it? " he crossed his hands a little defensively. "  I'll tell you if I think the idea is bad, but I'll let you do it if you really want to, just like you let me do stupid things even if you dislike them. Did I overstep some boundaries or made the wrong assumptions? In my defence, I am not blindly throwing support and resources at you without thought, you know... I am doing so with eyes wide open, extremely deliberately."
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

Mirach
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"No, you misunderstood," Senecio murmured sitting down on the edge of the stage. "I don’t care for ticket sales and reputation. Well I do, but that's not what I'm asking about. You say I'm free to mess up... But what I'm uncertain about is not if this is good for the theatre. I'm uncertain if it's good for me... if I should jump into it, or rather wait. Is it pride that's telling me to do it or is it courage to move on? Is it fear that's telling me to wait or is it being honest about what I need? I'm able to perceive feelings of others, but I wish I would be able to make sense of my own. Will it really help me to do this or will it make things worse? That's not really something I want a free pass to mess up for. Instead, I would rather like to know what you think about it... how you feel about it. It's not something I want like a boon and favour. Instead, I want your opinion, as a friend. Do you think it’s a good idea? Not for the play, for me..."
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

VisAnastasis
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Despite listening somberly, Hans could not hide he was placated and pleasantly surprised at Senecio asking him for advice so earnestly, and calling him a friend so openly. it seemed hard for him to speak up right away for some reason, though. So he first slowly sat down on the edge of the stage next to him, looking down at the floor.
" You know, in this humble friend's opinion... From the very start, I was certain, with some distance, when you see me acting in this role, you'll slowly grow to feel more and more frustrated not being able to play it, and will ask me to give it back... It was merely outside of my predictions that you'd ask it before you got a chance to grow properly frustrated, but I never believed you won't want it back eventually, because, beyond the fear... I know you loved playing it, " he admitted as he rubbed his wrists absentmindedly. " Still, Senecio... it will sound harsh, but I believe you'll suffer either way. If you take more time, you'll feel cowardly and ashamed for it, if you rush into it even if it's hard, you'll be in a lot of pain even if you overcome it. You'll hurt either way," he smiled, but unlike before, there was a tinge of dread in his smile, as he whispered slowly, as if struggling to convey something personal. " Senecio... Whatever you choose, you'll feel like you made the wrong choice, because either fighting to get better or giving up to get some air sucks either way. I was also faced with the same choice as you when... the emperor hurt me. Will I keep trying to let Tide treat me even though any meddling on my soul is excruciating, or will I put it aside and focus on other things so that I don't grow mad? And here I am still, extending up to infinity this 300-year-long break... So who am I, to either tell you to push on when you're in too much pain or to take a break if the break is more painful? " his quiet voice sounded unusually more unsure and dark. " Even if my path may seem convoluted to many... I believe it is still a path of recovery. I don't think it's that important what you choose right now... as long as you choose yourself. Because, in my opinion, in healing, nothing is as terrifying as the lack of ability to choose what will happen to you, or feeling pressured to take an uncomfortable path not to worry your friends. Please, forgive this capricious Being... I can not tell you either way, to push through or leave this aside, because I feel like I'll only damage you if I push you in either direction. To be honest... I don't really think it's that important if you choose poorly or not in this, is it? " he murmured unexpectedly. " You promised me you won't right away kill yourself if you despair, so... is it not fine if you despair moderately? If you'll suffer either way, won't it be good for you, to slowly get a better taste of what you need, by making a lot of choices all the time and trying all the options, regardless of the result? Why are you under so much pressure to pick well? This is a miserable reality, and you're in too much pain for either of those paths to suddenly lead to a future with no pain at all... You should just choose what pain is less maddening at the moment. I'll only stand in your way if I see you falling down the path of madness... But as long as your mind is yours, I think it's fine even if you take ten steps back every time you take a step forward. To be honest... this whole situation with having to see you die was... very hard for me, too, but, but that's all the more reason, "he clenched his teeth more firmly, still avoiding his look. " That I refuse to be a burden to you. I am, as is natural, terrified of losing you to either death or madness, but I won't let my fear become a chain that ties you down. I refuse to use this moment of your desperation to put a chain of any petty expectations on you... "
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

Mirach
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"So you're saying it would be a mess up either way?" Senecio smiled faintly. "That's comforting, actually. Less pressure to make a right decision if none of them is fully right. I'm torn between the options still, but... yeah, I'm going to do it because I want to hear the applause for my role, dammit. I didn’t get to hear it the last time."
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

VisAnastasis
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Hans could not help but feel a little relieved that Senecio brought himself to make a choice, still, his mood seemed rather somber. Only carefully, he glanced at the actor.
" Good... Since you desire it, let's aim for the maximum applause possible, " he smiled frailly, rubbing his wrists still. " What I said about bailing before, though... Please, make sure you keep in mind that you can always bail, at any point. And... just... " he paused suddenly and looked down anew as if trying to pick apart something heavy. His feelings reflected a mood more dark and vulnerable. " Make sure you do not forget that you have all the time in the world. There's no shame in changing your mind in the middle. Please, keep in mind to always prioritize your life and sanity. Even if theatre burns down to the ground, it's still a possession. Possessions can be replaced... People can not, " he murmured darkly. " I also needed a lot of time, so it's fine if you need a lot of time to turn things around, too, or even if you're never quite alright again. I'm not quite alright either, yet we still had a lot of fun making plays together... We can still have a lot of fun regardless of how healthy we are or not. Tide may offer you treatment and help, or try to convince you to get help from soul healers more actively, like from Svarik or Death. You can choose to do it, or not, just don't choose based on pressure, please. It's... fine if your time stops for a while. My time, too... has stopped for nearly 300 years, too. It barely started flowing back ten years ago, when the Thief died at last. Even though he's already dead, that man too still hurt you from the grave, so it's natural if you feel like your time is stuck, too, and he's not dead enough. It's fine if it takes a long while for your time to flow properly again. And... if Tide peer pressures you, you'll tell me, right? I'll help you keep his worry in check if he ever posters you with it, so just focus on figuring out what you want. Like applause, only aim for the things you want to have. "
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

Mirach
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"Right... you don't need to be perfectly fine to do things you like. I didn’t realize you don't have to actively try to get better as a priority, but you are totally right. It's a pressure, and you don't need to take it on if you don't feel like it. I think I'll see if I can just do what I like and stop if it feel like too much pressure."
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

VisAnastasis
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Finally, Spirit seemed satisfied with his reply, his feelings brightening up a little, as he was relieved he was able to advise him properly without pushing either option on him.
" Yes... I feel the same. I had a lot of fun with you, here at this place... I simply want to have some more. It's fine if it's not perfect. The situation where we were terribly anxious demon hunters would catch up to Tide while we were here and couldn't do anything to help him was not perfect, either, but we had fun even then... It will come on its own when we least expect it, but until then, it's fine if we despair together moderately, " he finally looked up at him, with a more contemplative feeling, as if he were debating something. " Speaking of despair... Sometimes after Janus's over-the-top cute tea party... would you mind... doing my makeup before we go out, please? I swear I did not leave it undone just to tease you... it is merely a result of moderate despair of my own, " he admitted unsurely, as indeed, unlike previous days, the creature's face was bare and his scars were visible, and he seemed insecure explaining his reasons. " I really wanted to do it myself when I woke up in the morning since you were asleep... But it was like it was for Tide... when he suddenly had trouble kissing you after you died. Because you were always the one doing my makeup, when I tried doing it on my own, I was overcome with the feeling of something being wrong... because my heart was telling me that the only reason I'd have to do it on my own... would be if you were dead. You are dead, and I have to struggle to figure out how to do something we liked doing together but on my own... so I just could not do it in the end. Minds... are pretty foolish, connecting unrelated things so terribly firmly, aren't they? " he shared his pain with a smile that was flickering like a light of a waning candle. " Since we're speaking about bailing... Would it be okay if I bail on trying to learn to do makeup on my own for a while? I'll be okay, eventually. I'm just... really not okay right now. I refuse to be a bigger burden to you when you're fragile yourself... but this much to share should be okay, shouldn't it? " he whispered while watching him intently now, as if anxious to see the effect of his confession. " I refuse to burden you, but still, I'd hate you to fall into the misunderstanding that I'm unfazed by what happened to you, or dismissive of it, just because you revived. I am but a too spiteful bastard. I have a reasonable amount of grief, I just refuse to let this petty despair ruin my happiness, merely out of spite, as is my nature... "
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

Mirach
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Senecio gritted his teeth, looking almost angry, but clearly not at Hans. "The bastard..." he muttered. "Three things I love most. Acting, kissing Tide and make-up. Three things, and he ruined all of them." He took a deep breath, calming himself a little. "No, not ruined. We'll get them back. We'll overcome this. But... ugh, the absolute bastard! I'm sorry, I didn’t mean to yell, but it's making me so angry at him. It's okay, I'll do your make-up whenever you want. I love doing it, it's no bother. I'll do it right after the party."
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

VisAnastasis
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It seemed this way something that was weighing on Spirit's mind considerably, as well as the dilemma of how much he should tell of his feelings to Senecio, as he feared he'd only add to his worries. But with the actor's reaction, he couldn't help but chuckle, his clouded, troubled expression relaxing considerably as if he got a great weight off his chest by sharing this insecurity with him.
" That already sounds much more like my lovable spiteful friend... It's good to hear you sound more like yourself. Anger and spite truly suit you, just like me, " he spoke, with a frail, but more free and warm feeling, that didn't come from tease, but endearment. Even without the ability to perceive feelings, the creature's vulnerable gaze was clearly warm and affectionate. " No, really... Truly, thank you for getting angry. I really need someone to be angry along with me, because I am quite furious, not being able to kill such a horrible bastard at least twice. I really feel like I robbed myself, not killing him with even more zeal. So thank you for that anger. And... thank you for the makeup. Today, and... all the days before, " his feeble smile was soft and tender. " Even if I'm a little shaken right now... it's still something I really love and want back. It's just not the same if you're not the one to do it... so, let's put on some nice makeup and have fun picking some nice colours after the party... deal? "
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

Mirach
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"Yes, we will do that, and then we need to decide on a costume for Erdel. You're wearing makeup and I'll be in the play, because at least we can do that if we can't kill the bastard again," Senecio said and stood up resolutely.
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

VisAnastasis
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Hans's expression was much softer and less troubled, as a change in Senecio's attitude seemed to soothe him and calm him down. More than what he picked, Spirit clearly seemed to feel really proud of him for managing to pick an option he felt so strongly about. More than an exact choice, he clearly enjoyed his spite dearly and was happy with his determination.
" Let's get one hell of a nice costume, then... As soon as we finish the tea party. Come here, kids. We don't want the tea to get cold... Let me show you just how lovely we renovated space below the stage, " he whispered warmly, inviting both the demon and human with a gesture. He lead them to a new, tasteful black door... and beyond the door, after a couple of steps below, to a whole new room.

Indeed, it was almost hard to recognize it. There was a lot of light now coming from above, and it seemed they dug deeper to give more space to the area and give it higher ceilings. Three sides of the room were designated for mechanisms, and while mostly empty for now as all but Janus's new ones were destroyed, there would clearly be a lot of space for adding more in the future. For now, walls were freshly painted in a soothing blue shade, similar to the colour of Tide's eyes, and as he stepped forth, instead of a bare cold floor, Senecio felt the warm touch of new black tiles that covered the whole floor level and were slightly heated, clearly made in some special way to keep the room always warm and make it possible for people to walk barefoot comfortably, even if it was underground.
On the wall closest to the stage, though, there was no equipment or gears, but a system of mirrors, leading to three big ones that clearly showed the stage from three angles, so that play could be easily observed from below.

In front of the mirrors, just like a small apartment area, there was an open space that was clearly designated as a resting area, with soft fuzzy carpet circling it, a couple of armchairs and a table, all decorated with soothing pastel colours. Upon the table, there was a white tablecloth with baby blue forget-me-nots embroidered on them, and it was packed full of tableware stacked with cookies and sweets, as well as teapots and cups with hearts drawn on them. And there, at a table, Janus was leaning above the plates - moving them a little to the left or right, and folding napkins most carefully at their side, as if fully immersed in his efforts to make sure everything is perfect for his first tea party. Because he unpacked such an ungodly amount of sweets and brew a lot of warm beverages, the whole basement level was oozing with the scent of cookies and full of warm steam from the tea.
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

Mirach
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Senecio looked around, studying the mirrors and the seating are more closely. "I must say it looks great here," he said. "Smells great, too. Are that vanilla scones?"
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

VisAnastasis
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Being, who was rather easily started and insecure when he first came to the theatre, flinched but slightly at the sound, as he just noticed them - but he calmed down right away this time, grinning widely in response to Senecio's question. Although always on the quiet side, there was a clear spark of pride and contentment in the creature's feelings, and not even the presence of Erdel who was a stranger could cloud his mood right now.
" Yes, indeed, baker called those on this side with that name, " he explained there brightly, as, like a proper host, he pushed armchairs a bit more to the side so they could sit comfortably. " I am not sure how they taste, but they looked delightfully friend shaped, so I had to get them... Don't worry if you don't like them in particular, of course, little Senecio. I got 15 different kinds of sweets, so statistically, at least some should be to your taste. If.... " he coughed, seeming suddenly rather timid, as he added vaguely. " If any of them is at least 8/10 flavour rated, please just make sure to tell me which one so I can write it down for our next tea party... "
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

Mirach
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"Thank you, I would like to try them if the tea is ready. Do you need any help with setting this up?" Senecio asked.
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

VisAnastasis
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" I did most of it, and placed all the cookies in optimum places for easy reach... but I still haven't folded all the napkins. Emmet taught me how to fold them in the shape of roses, so I wanted to fold a lot and place them around the plates and cookies to make the table look more welcoming... Like in children book illustrations. The tea party in this one book that the children showed me looked quite lovely, so I wanted to have such flowers too. But it's harder to make them fast than it looks, " the creature admitted embarrassedly, as indeed, there were a couple of folded roses strategically placed around the table, but definitely not enough to consider it overflowing with decorations. " It seems next time I should make them beforehand than on the spot, as it takes a while... "
" I can help you fold a few more, " Hans offered, giving his best to keep a straight face and not tease an old Being for his highly specific meticulousness, but the creature shook his head, gesturing them to sit down.
" Oh, don't worry... I can just keep making them as you eat and drink. I can't let the tea get cold just because I am behind the napkin folding schedule. It would be the poor decision of me as a host, " he replied, as he reached for the teapot with hearts painted all over it - which, judging by brushstrokes, was definitely a gift from Tide - and he began generously filling his quests cups with steaming tea, and shyly pushing honey and sugar cube plate toward them so they could sweeten it to their taste.
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

Mirach
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"If I may have a suggestion, I would leave some napkins unfolded for actual use," Senecio quipped in. "I would be hesitant to actually use and destroy a lovely folded rose. You could leave those for decoration. But anyway, how are you doing it?" He took one napkin to follow Janus's moves to learn how to fold it into a rose.
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

VisAnastasis
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Janus's face lit up with a little smile at that. He sat down in his own armchair, and he made sure he positions and moves his hands carefully so that others could see it well, doing it step by step, so they could easily follow. While his feelings were always faint, he seemed genuinely pleased with the chance to teach something he was interested in. Hans, with more experience, and also Erdel, with shy interest, picked up some napkins and began to follow along, making roses.
" Regarding your question... I see no reason why we should not use roses, in any case. Just because you put a lot of heart into making something doesn't mean you should strive to preserve it as long as possible, " Janus replied gently to Senecio after a moment, while he was folding, sighing contentedly, his shoulders much more slouched and relaxed with a repetitive little activity. " I look at it a lot like fireworks... Some things in life you prepare carefully for quite a while, and spend in but a moment. That is quite alright, I think. If you already have to clean your face anyway, clearing it with a nice flower seems rather a lovely thing to me... Is it a human social convention not to? " his ears wiggled slightly with curiosity. " Telling yourself that you shouldn't clear your face with a flower just because it feels like a waste seems like rather an elaborate way to miss out. Just like I can make geometric sandwiches for children, but if I can cut bread for them in heart shapes like in the storybook - why should I not? They seemed rather content when I made them heart-shaped human sandwiches this morning before going to work... Am I perhaps... missing some context? Am I... doing it wrong? "
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Re: Senecio adn Tide II

Mirach
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"Senecio thought about it for a while as he was folding the napkin. "I don't know, actually. Maybe it's me who's doing it wrong. I guess you have to find a balance depending on the time you have, you know. If the time spent preparing things to be perfect for a party should cut from the time to actually have fun at the party, then I would rather have it less perfect. Sometimes it's nice to have a perfect rose, and sometimes it's nice to have lovely company and just throw in some plain napkins. It depends on what you want at the moment. So... what I actually want to say, I guess, is that you don't need to prepare a perfect party for us to enjoy it. You can, if you want, of course. But it's not a requirement."
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