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Thread: All This is For You. [Backdated] August 20, 217 [The Grand Hall | Open]

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    House Farrand-Calhoun Lochlan Farrand-Calhoun's Avatar  
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    All This is For You. [Backdated] August 20, 217 [The Grand Hall | Open]

    It had been two days since he'd been crowned King and spilled his brother's blood instead of his sister's. He wasn't sure how the public felt about it but that really wasn't his concern. With the help of the Queen, the Dowager Queen, and Princess Nataliah they planned a grand feast and it was all in the honor and name of his beloved sister. "It's all for you." He'd told Tatianna as they'd had the seamstress present her with a marvelous gown. It had shown and sparkled in the sunlight and came with the matching jewelry that Nataliah had picked out for her. "You are a Princess and you will be honored like you should have been all your life." Lochlan was trying to make up for the years his sister was forced to live hidden away from the world.

    ------------------------

    The halls were decorated with the colors of the royal family and even the Grand Hall had their colors, coupled with golden and white touches to honor the Princess. Every table was decorated, every place was set, and the servants were told that no glass was allowed to be empty and no one was to leave without eating their fill. Roast animals of all sorts were laid out for the feasts. Vegetables from all corners of Balfour had been cooked in every way imaginable and even with the food and entertainers there was still plenty of room left to dance.

    An orchestra sat toward the front of the room. All their instruments gleamed in the light as their polished surfaces caught the candles that lined the room. There was light music playing as guests from all over the country, and even some from Tuneric, filtered through the room and drank their wines while they stood to chat.

    For his part, Lochlan sat in his throne, Langston and Jacquelyn had dressed for the occasion and taken their seats at the head of the room next to him. Nataliah had filtered in late after giving Tatianna direction as to when to enter the room. His eldest sister had made sure that she was to be given the best of introductions. Not one soul in this room would be doubting who Princess Tatianna was when they left Moorford Estates on this night.

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    House Farrand-Calhoun Tatianna Farrand-Calhoun's Avatar  
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    She was nervous. Today was the day she was to be officially presented to Balfour as the King's sister and a Princess. Wearing the gown that Lochlan had ordered made for her, she waited for the time that Nataliah had told her was made for her to enter. All those eyes would be on her, studying her, examining her. Tianna made herself calm down and just breathe for a few seconds. It was still strange to know that she had lived while Luther died as the Sacrifice for Lochlan's coronation, but her brother had been firm on the decision. Luther, not her.

    She would live. She would be a part of the family, living in Silesia, instead of at the Temple. Princess Tatianna...

    There were doubts in her heart and her mind whether she could be the Princess that Balfour needed and deserved. Tatianna hadn't been raised the same way as her brother and sister, given the tools to behave like royalty. She would do her best, learn as fast as she could, but she knew she was coming very late to this. At the heart, Tianna would be herself, and Nataliah told her that was what mattered. She only hoped it was enough.

    One of the servants stood in the door-way, waiting for her to notice. Her head lifted, blue eyes blinking at the man as he smiled gently. "It's time?" Asked softly, she swallowed hard when he nodded. One more deep breath helped her chin to rise and her spine to go straight. Balfour was about to meet their youngest Princess.

  3. #3
    House Romanov Marcus Romanov's Avatar  
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    Certainly the Romanov family would not miss this chance to ingratiate themselves to the new King, and Marcus wasn’t the sort to forego a party. King Lochlan had spared no expense on the grand feast since it was a celebration of multiple new beginnings: New King, new Princess, and a new era for all of Balfour. Half of his family was already there when Marcus arrived with the Lady Rosemary on his arm. The two were birds of a feather and very much alike in their general attitude of life. However as much as others might have assumed the nature of their familiarity together, it was their commonalities that kept them as nothing more than friends; two peas in a pod sharing all of the known facts about humanity and the world around them.

    Marcus wasn’t entirely sure on where Wilhelm was, but Raelyn passed by and greeted the both of them with excitement. “Can you believe they have a fountain of chocolate? I must tell Elsa!”

    Grabbing her skirts she bounded after to find her sister before Marcus chuckled and ribbed Rosemary a bit in the side, “Perhaps you should go find her before my sister does and the two of them consume the whole thing.”

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    House Gardiner Rosemary Gardiner's Avatar  
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    Rosemary returned a sly grin at his comment. She was dressed to the nines in a Kelly green dress with a sweetheart neckline and little ribbons of fabric around her upper arms for peek-a-boo sleeves. Her copper brown hair was pulled up in a crown braid with little spikes of shorter hairs plucked in various areas for flare. As a Gardiner it was only natural to represent the colors and embroideries of the very herbs and plants they cultivated.

    “Quite frankly I have every intention on helping them eat it all.” Rosemary replied with devious confidence before tapping Marcus on the nose and pulling away from her escort. “Not that I need to tell you, but don’t wait up. I’m going to go hunt down the magical chocolate fountain. Maybe paint a handsome lord with it and make a public display of ourselves.”

    Luckily with Marcus she could be discreetly obscene and he wouldn’t think any less of her. Immediately she searched the room to see, through the never-ending throngs of people, if she could find her best friend. Somehow they had disconnected at the beheading and it was damn near impossible to find her since then. For a moment she thought she saw a flash of brunette hair that looked familiar.

    “Elsa!” She called out and immediately reached to grab her arm. When the girl turned around and looked at her funny, Rosemary gave a sheepish look and replied, “Oops! Wrong one. Sorry…pretend this never happened.” Lightly she patted the offended girl on the arm before seeking her friend out again.

    “Elsa?”

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    House Gardiner Reed Gardiner's Avatar  
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    Since Marcus snitched his sister away to play escort, Reed decided to be courteous and lend his arm to the Lady Elsa. Arriving with the excited young girl, he smiled at her enthusiasm for seeing the decorations and the elaborate feast laid out. He intended to deliver her to her brother, but was stopped a few times by other lords and their ladies. Those same manners insisted on him introducing Elsa, but Reed wisely ignored the looks that passed. Elsa was a child, and he had no thoughts in his head beyond the brotherly.

    Hearing Rosemary's voice (it carried when she wanted it to), he used it as a beacon to find them both. Fortunately, Marcus was a fairly tall man, making it easy to locate his friend in the throng of people. "Ah, here you are..." A hand lifted to wave at Rose, since she was looking for Elsa. "Looks like our new King has spared no expense for introducing his sister to the people."

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    House Romanov Elsa Romanov's Avatar  
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    Elsa was a little excited to be escorted by Lord Gardiner, instead of having to tag along with her brothers. She loved them both, but being viewed as an adult lady was a very nice feeling. The youngest Romanov was looking her best in a gown of cream silk with dark gold and green trim, her dark hair curled and arranged thanks to Raelyn's efforts. Soft slippers on her feet were made for dancing, if Papa would allow her to accept invitations! A new Princess didn't come along every day. It was a special occasion!

    The few stops they made were accepted, making her curtsy politely and speak with those who seized Lord Gardiner's attention. He was kind enough to introduce her as Lady Elsa, not Marcus's or Wilhelm's sister, then move them on. She brightened when Rosemary called her name, remembering to thank Lord Gardiner for his kindness before she all but skipped off to join her sister and her friend. "I'm here, Rosemary! What is it?"

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    House Shellten Nataliah's Avatar  

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    For her part, Nataliah felt almost as nervous as Tatianna had looked when she'd had to leave her to rejoin the rest of the family. She felt a distinct responsibility for her little sister, and she had spent as much time as she could preparing her as best she could for what to expect. Remembering all too clearly what it had been like to be bewildered by the normal world when she had been released from the temple herself all those years ago, she could only imagine how much worse it was for Tianna. Nataliah had been little more than a child when her place had been taken by the new princess that had been born, and it had been hard enough then even with the leeway she was afforded by her young age. The pressure on Tianna to adjust to this new world as an adult must have been maddening, and Nat had resolved to do whatever she could to make it easier.

    Sitting at the table beside her siblings, she waited with great impatience as the moment for Tatianna's presentation came closer. Being the center of attention, especially at a grand affair like this, had to be incredibly daunting, but Nataliah had promised her little sister that after this first thing, she wouldn't have to navigate the rest of the party alone. She fully intended on looping her arm through Tianna's and not leaving her side the entire night, if that's what the new princess wished.

    The sound of the crowd below was just so much noise as Nataliah sat pensively, sending as much courage and positive energy as she could to where she knew Tatianna was standing, waiting. "Any moment now..." she breathed, as she waited and wondered if perhaps time was moving more slowly than usual.

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    House Farrand-Calhoun Tatianna Farrand-Calhoun's Avatar  
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    Nataliah had given her very detailed instructions on how to make her entrance. This whole thing had been arranged by her brother and sister, and Tatianna was going to follow those instructions to the very letter. She wanted to make a good impression on the kingdom and her people from the start. There would always be questions about what had happened, Langston warned her, but if she made a good, strong start, those questions would often go un-asked. Taking that to heart, she smoothed down the fine gown that Lochlan ordered for her to wear, took a deep breath and followed the servant who was sent to lead her to where the crowd waited to see the newest Princess.

    She could do this.

    To be honest with herself, she was frightened. There would be so many eyes staring at her, questioning, wondering, judging her. It made her raise her chin a little, remembering what her brothers and sister said. This was for her, and no matter what, no-one could take that from her. She could do this. As long as she followed Nataliah's instructions, Tianna felt confident that she could face the evening ahead. Feeling the weight of the tiara on her head, she knew there were responsibilities to go with the privileges, but she was not afraid of that.

    Coming to the double-doors, she waited for the fanfare and the announcement of her presence, knowing that when they opened the doors, it would begin for real. There was a tiny mark that Nataliah left precisely in the middle where Tatianna was to stand for a moment, letting everyone have a good look before she went to where her family was sitting. It was an entrance fit for a Princess.

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    House Farrand-Calhoun Lochlan Farrand-Calhoun's Avatar  
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    The servant that was set to deliver his sister walked through the door and took his position so that Lochlan could know they were all set to begin. He gave the signal for everyone to take their places and for the music to stop. As the instrumental entertainment slowly fell off into silence the men and women in attendance looked up to him and he decided to set a precedent. The King stood and looked toward the double doors. All around the room other's stood as he did, even the King of Tuneric who sat at the head of the room just before them. He looked down to Cailen and smiled at the man who has captured Nataliah's heart so completely.

    His youngest sister would be honored and he would make sure she was to be given the best party that he could put together. It helped that Nataliah and the Queen had each had their hand in putting together this event and even Langston had offered his hand to help. The room was lit and with each body standing and facing the door Lochlan's heart skipped a beat. His only hope would be that Tatianna, from here on out, would feel welcome in her home. He knew he couldn't undo the years she spent in seclusion thinking that her life would be sacrificed in the name of her family but he hoped that he could help her future be a bit brighter.

    "Her Royal Highness, the Princess Tatianna." A voice carried, strong and confident, through the hall and there was a hush as everyone held their applause and waited for their Princess to enter the room.

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    Member Jacquelyn's Avatar  
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    Jacquelyn rose from her seat a beat after Lochlan did, with Nataliah and Lochlan following suit. All eyes looked to those double doors, and the anticipation was palpable as Lochlan first called for silence, and then announced Tatianna's name and title. On cue, the door opened, and the radiant princess stepped out, pausing just as was planned, and applause burst forth to welcome the new princess. Jacquelyn herself heartily joined in, raising her hands as she did as if to toast the newly reclaimed royal. Although Nataliah, it could be said, was the one who had stepped up most fully to help her sister, Jacquelyn couldn't help but feel a sort of motherly responsibility toward the girl. While she was not terribly young, her inexperience with the world was such that Jacquelyn wished to do what she could to make the transition process easier. It was true that Luther had never let her go to Silesia to visit her, so that now the queen was something of a stranger to the new princess, but she hoped that in time that would change.

    "She looks beautiful," Jacquelyn commented to none in particular, her voice only carrying to those who were close. "I do so hope she enjoys herself tonight, and isn't completely overwhelmed."

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    House Romanov Marcus Romanov's Avatar  
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    Having found each other in the throngs of people, Marcus joined up with Reed and chuckled, “It appears we have swapped sisters this evening!”

    Marcus enjoyed the fact that he had made friends with a lord of equal mind in a lot of ways. Reed might not have entirely been a party animal by comparison, but Marcus found a great deal of refuge in Baldell from his parents and older brother along the way.

    But after the sacrifice had commenced it was now time to announce the princess who was saved from the blade and was to be presented to the people. The Romanov couldn’t help but wonder about the strange twists of fate that condemned some and then suddenly saved others. Unlike the ceremony a couple of days ago, however, the presentation of the princess did not take long to announce. Within several minutes of arriving the new king had come out and began his introduction of the Princess Tatianna Farrand-Calhoun.

    Marcus could sense the excitement in the air as he looked about among the others first before directing his attention to where the newly minted princess would be coming out to see the world. Certainly this would be a life-changing experience for her; one that Marcus could not relate to in the slightest.

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    House Gardiner Rosemary Gardiner's Avatar  
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    Luckily Reed didn’t intend to hog Elsa all to himself. She was a delicious little dish for him, sure, but Rosemary had other mischief in mind which didn’t entail him. When Elsa approached and asked what was up, the Gardiner girl immediately reached out and took her friend’s hand to capture the girl into her fold. When Marcus mentioned swapping sister, Rosemary simply piped in, “Swap us, but you won’t get to keep us I’m afraid.”

    Not that Marcus would have any interest in keeping Rosemary on his arm. They had already gone down that road of intrigue a long time ago in the past. It was always fun for a romp or two, but in the end they were two people of the same coin and in this case the commonalities detracted. It was at least nice to have a male companion who wouldn’t judge her for misbehaving knowing that he was just as bad. But it was time to focus on the things at hand and not worry about the boys.

    “Raelyn said she discovered a chocolate fountain. That’s all I really need to know to break from our escorts and get moving.” Rosemary replied with a smirk. But just as she was about to encourage the adventure, the formalities of the announcement began. Taking a moment of pause, she looked about, “Whoa! That was fast. Last time it took them hours to get started.”

    Seeing Lochlan emerge to introduce his sister was certainly a sight to behold. Rosemary leaned in and murmured casually, “What I would give to wrap my legs around His Majesty. That’s a delicious dish.”

  13. #13
    House Shellten Cailen Shellten's Avatar  
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    Cailen had spent a fair amount of time discussing politics of this country with Grayson. They had a table of honor that sat parallel those of the Lords of Balfour and he was able to watch over them as they ate, drank, sang, and danced. They didn't seem at all different than his people and he had to smile. They had found an ally. An ally and then some.

    He wouldn't deny that on many occasions he found it hard for himself to peel his eyes from Nataliah. Her beautiful blond hair framed her face in a way that stirred his imagination into inappropriate thoughts. Thoughts of the night of the Bacchanal. How her silken body ran across his skin as they danced. An announcement was made that snapped him out of his daydream and he and Grayson stood as the men and women of Balfour had done the same.

    "She is such a sweet girl." Cailen whispered to his Uncle. "I'm glad that everything has worked out for her."

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    House Baptiste Henry Baptiste's Avatar  
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    He would admit, even though he wasn't a truly social individual, he did love parties. Henry's only lament was that his father wasn't there to talk to. His mother and sister were there though and he did worry about the health of Eva while she rested at home with their father. She'd been through so much and he'd hoped that her recovery would go well with very little emotional scarring. Though if Baptiste women were known for anything it was their pure strength in situations were other women would scream and faint. The women of his family were made of the strongest metal and there was no doubt about that.

    There was food everywhere and Henry leaned over to his sister and mother to make a comment about how hungry he was. Just as he was about to open his mouth and speak the announced Princess Tatianna and everyone rose to their feet to honor her.

    "She really is quite pretty." He whispered.

    @Amelia Baptiste @Annemarie Baptiste

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    House Farrand-Calhoun Tatianna Farrand-Calhoun's Avatar  
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    At the announcement of her name and the title that was now officially hers, Tatianna stepped into the room. Her eyes locked on Lochlan, standing to wait for her, with Queen Jacquelyn seated and Langston close. Nataliah and King Cailen were not far either. She just had to cross the length of the room to get to them. She could do this. One step at a time, with every pair of eyes in the room looking at her.

    It wasn't like Lochlan's coronation. Then, he had been everyone's focus. She was there, knew that they looked at her but this was different. Tonight was about her, the role she now held in the family. For a minute, Tatianna panicked, frozen in place and unable to move, but then she saw the looks on her family's faces. She could do this.

    Remembering what Nataliah told her, that she was always herself just with a crown now, Tatianna enjoyed the feel of the gown as it moved with her. She glided forward, trying for grace as she kept her pace slow and hopefully regal. There were so many people she had to meet, to learn and to encourage, but now she understood what Nataliah meant. A soft, grateful smile went to her sister, wanting to veer off to her, but instead kept going until she stood before Lochlan and curtsied to him. Her King, but more importantly, her brother.

    "Your Majesty."

  16. #16
    House Gardiner Reed Gardiner's Avatar  
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    Amused as he relinquished little Lady Elsa to his sister, Reed joined Marcus as well, a hand clapping his shoulder. "Only temporarily, I fear, though there's times I'm sure Rosemary's more your sister then mine." Not in looks, no, but they had such a similar mind-set about life. Occasionally, Reed worried about his sister, that was his job as a brother, but he also understood that she had a spirit that needed to be free. He respected that and did very little to put checks or jesses on her. Rosemary had a good head, he trusted her intelligence to keep her out of the worst of trouble, and Elsa with her.

    Hearing the announcement, he turned his attention to the entrance, taking his first good look at the newest Princess. She was a lovely girl, he noted, but he had no ambitions towards joining the royal family. Nudging Marcus, Reed muttered, "Have a good look at young Baptiste over there. He's looking at the Princess like he's just found the answer to all of his prayers. Have you had a chance to meet her yet yourself?" Knowing his friend, Marcus likely found the new princess a delectable little morsel. Reed only hoped he wouldn't play it too risky. Marcus was a man with an eye for the ladies, and here was an almost irresistible temptation indeed.


    @Marcus Romanov

  17. #17
    House Romanov Marcus Romanov's Avatar  
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    Feeling the clap on his shoulder, he gave Reed a devious smile, “Perhaps I am secretly your brother, for I believe I fit better into your family than mine as well. The thought had occurred to me…”

    He was being facetious, but sometimes it didn’t feel too farfetched. These days he was spending more time with the Gardiners than his own family. Wilhelm was frequently in South Huntswalk performing his morbid studies in solitude, and with Brent being a newly minted husband and father it seemed he was losing his partners-in-crime to the throes of adulthood.

    But those matters were set aside when the Princess Tatianna came out. While others gawked and murmured in wonder, Marcus could see that the girl was a nervous wreck. Behind the pristine smile and elegant mannerisms, there was hesitance and fear behind every step. She was trying to acclimate herself to this newfound position, and he could see that tiny courage within her trying to come out with every movement. Carefully he watched her, suddenly murmuring to himself, “That’s it…you’ve got this.”

    Feeling Reed nudge him, he looked over before hearing the older man telling him to turn in Henry Baptiste’s direction. As he listened to Lord Gardiner speak on how Henry was eyeing her, Marcus could only chuckle before he spoke into his cup as he was about to sip, “He wouldn’t know what to do with her even if he tried.”

    Taking a casual drink, the next question caused him to pause and roll the wine about in his cup. “We’ve crossed paths down a hall. Quite the lovely young lady.”

    Clearing his throat, he tried to look back up at where Tatianna was standing. Only days ago she hoped he would stay to see her coming out party to the kingdom. Now that he was here he was wondering what to really expect of this whole thing.

    @Reed Gardiner

  18. #18
    House Baptiste Annemarie Baptiste's Avatar  
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    Annemarie was reluctant to remain in Silesia when Eva was recovering, but Eva could not be in better hands than those of their father. Winston was diligent and attentive; anything and everything that could be done to help Eva was well within his purview. Her place was here, with her mother and her older brother, reunited with them for a short time before they traveled to Baldell and then back to Old Havenwich. Curious as well about the new princess, she was seated with her family and rose to her feet with the announcement of the young lady's arrival.

    Watching Tatianna advance towards the King, Annemarie smiled faintly. Not in a million years would she ever look like that, but perhaps that was all to the good. She was a serious scholar, an apothecary in training, and a hopefully valuable member of the Baptiste family. Though she had her secrets, Annemarie was rather content not to be under the watchful eyes of so many as Tatianna now was. Hearing her brother's whisper, she shifted to regard him with open astonishment. Henry seldom took such notice of a lady. Intrigued, she leaned closer to her brother, "Did you just say she's pretty? Are you alright, Henry?"

    Looking past him to Amelia, the glance said it all. What on earth had come over her brother?


    @Henry Baptiste

  19. #19
    House Farrand-Calhoun Lochlan Farrand-Calhoun's Avatar  
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    Lochlan watched as Tatianna crossed the hall in their direction. The dress moved perfectly around her and she was the picture of grace and beauty. She finally smiled and with only a slight pause she made it to him and stepped down to take her hand. She was just like a younger Nataliah and his heart hurt for how many years Tatianna had to spend locked away. She greeted him and he answered with simple encouragement. "Chin up." His voice never raised above a whisper.

    A smile and a small gesture helped him lead her up the stairs to stand next to him and take her seat that she should have had all along. "Your Princess." He announced loud over the masses. "Tatianna." There was applause and Lochlan still held his sister's hand. He gave her fingers a little squeeze and as his wife stood beside him he couldn't feel more proud to have his whole family here. The ones who deserved their places upon the dias.

    Luther was dead and they were free. Balfour was free.

  20. #20
    House Shellten Nataliah's Avatar  

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    "Her Royal Highness, the Princess Tatianna."

    Nataliah stood between her brothers, an empty chair between herself and Lochlan which would soon be Tatianna's. She beamed with pride as Tatianna made her way in, and although she could see the nerves in her sister's face, she was handling them marvelously. Nat's gaze did not falter, nor did her smile, and she met Tatianna's eyes as she passed, her expression brightening even more.

    When the new princess's procession had passed her, Nataliah chanced a look out over the audience. So many of the noble families were represented here, and every face her eyes fell onto looked happy, supportive, curious. It was a good reception, and although she was sure she would never stop feeling protective of her little sister, she found her anxiety for the night, at least, easing slightly.

    Before looking back to where Tatianna stood, tall and beautiful beside Lochlan, Nataliah looked over to the Tuneric king. He sat with the Balfour nobility, slightly off to the side, but in a place of respect all the same, and she wondered if he cared for the change in position. What was it like for him, to look up at another family sitting upon the dais on which he usually took the place of honor? She would have to remember to ask him. As she looked on where he and his uncle sat, Cailen's eyes met hers. She did not react much, but she cast him a wink before turning her attention back to her own family.

    "Your Princess, Tatianna." Nataliah joined in the applause, and for the first time in a long time, the future looked bright.

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