finding footholds
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Bastien De Rosieres
the Dionysian
Overseer of the Hollowed Grounds / Artist / Ambassador

Age: 36 | Height: 6' 2" | Race: Ascended | Nationality: Outlander | Citizenship: Hollowed Grounds
Level: 5 - Strg: 20 - Dext: 22 - Endr: 20 - Luck: 12 - Int:
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#1
BASTIEN
Stimulation in body and soul
Bastien had often been someone that lead a slow life. Not a sedentary one; he was nearly always up and about, doing one thing or another, but he tended to take on duties he could make his own schedules around, tasks he could idle with and muse over. His sanctuary had been this entirely, his own dream-like space to swan about in.

Since becoming leader, that had not been the case. Suddenly he was responsible for so much, answers expected he had not had the week before the title, and that he did not have now. Places to explore, decisions to make...Bastien had so much to do that he had almost gone a whole three days without touching a paintbrush, a first in many years.

At least he did not have to shoulder the burden alone. He had asked to meet Isla for a discussion of...well, everything, really. What to ask the Voice for in the coming season, his meeting with the Core, the general state of the Grounds and the rising threat of the Order, along with many other small issues he hadn't even considered before he'd had this position.

How had Wessex made it seem so easy?

Drawing into the Theskyra house's sitting room, still the most private and comfortable place to meet, he waited for his Overseer-in-arms to arrive. Perhaps a little dramatic, he had a large, sheer purple drape over himself, making his body a vague shape on the chair; stars on it glittered in the dusk light from the window.
For the good and misguided
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Isla Lockwood
the Remedy
Overseer of the Hollowed Grounds / Medic

Age: 27 | Height: 5'7 | Race: Ascended | Nationality: Outlander | Citizenship: Hollowed Grounds
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#2
ISLA

Their lifestyles are a study in opposites, it seems. Isla had led a very busy life even before becoming Overseer, and now it's just even busier. She arrives at Theskyra House straight from the Infirmary, in her white doctor's coat with a stethoscope still around her neck, not that she really needs it these days. "Hello Bastien," she says softly as she sweeps into the sitting room, taking off both coat and stethoscope to lay them down over the arm of a wingback chair.

"You know, I don't think we have had a moment together since we began to rule the Grounds." Her smile is wry but it really is true, Isla sinking down into her chair and relaxing back. "What a shame we can't enjoy a drink any more. I would kill for some sweet tea. How have you been?"
she's a runner
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Bastien De Rosieres
the Dionysian
Overseer of the Hollowed Grounds / Artist / Ambassador

Age: 36 | Height: 6' 2" | Race: Ascended | Nationality: Outlander | Citizenship: Hollowed Grounds
Level: 5 - Strg: 20 - Dext: 22 - Endr: 20 - Luck: 12 - Int:
PITTORE - Mythical - Gremlin (Disappearance)
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Posts: 1,359
MP: 229
#3
BASTIEN
Stimulation in body and soul
Bastien smiled as Isla entered the room looking just the picture of a doctor, as if she had come to check his health. "Good evening. It's good to see you."

Wryly laughing and nodding as she mentioned the drink, he agreed: "I'd like a glass of wine, that might actually dull my senses just a little for the evening. Sadly, we gave up those luxuries, didn't we?" For the most part, Bastien didn't miss them, despite his hedonistic lifestyle, but sometimes it felt like nothing would solve his problems more than a good meal, drink and sleep.

"I am well enough. In fact, I had a most...amazing, indescribable encounter. With the Core." The awe in his voice was plain to hear. "It was as if my entire head was overtaken. It told me to find...'the court'. I am underway with that - I don't know what I will find, but I hope it will help us." And they needed help in the years to come, if the war was truly going to begin. The Grounds was critically vulnerable, even with the Order effectively taken care of.

Turning to her, he lifted a hand. "And how are you? There is much to discuss, but we may as well have our pleasantries first. I'm sure we will be talking long into the night."
For the good and misguided
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Isla Lockwood
the Remedy
Overseer of the Hollowed Grounds / Medic

Age: 27 | Height: 5'7 | Race: Ascended | Nationality: Outlander | Citizenship: Hollowed Grounds
Level: 6 - Strg: 20 - Dext: 22 - Endr: 19 - Luck: 12 - Int:
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#4
ISLA

"Wine, tea, perhaps some fruit and cheese and pastries." Isla sighs wistfully. "It's true that I wouldn't change it for anything, but gods if it wouldn't be pleasant every now and then," she agrees. Getting comfortable, her pebble blues grow sharp with interest to hear of his encounter with the Core. "Bastien, that's incredible," she breathes. "They told you to find the... the 'court'? Like a court of law?"

It's vague enough that there might be multiple explanations and interpretations, and that does little to help with anything. Still, that Bastien had been in the Core's presence is enough to earn an awed expression of her own. "If you need help with it, just let me know," she almost whispers, smiling to herself and having to force herself to focus on the returned pleasantries.

"I am quite well," she assures him. "The Infirmary is back up and running, and Varus has taken a position as Wessex's captain, which is reassuring in itself. The Grounds have decided on a defensive system for the Spire as well, so there's plenty of preparation underway for that as well."
she's a runner
rebel, and a stunner
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Bastien De Rosieres
the Dionysian
Overseer of the Hollowed Grounds / Artist / Ambassador

Age: 36 | Height: 6' 2" | Race: Ascended | Nationality: Outlander | Citizenship: Hollowed Grounds
Level: 5 - Strg: 20 - Dext: 22 - Endr: 20 - Luck: 12 - Int:
PITTORE - Mythical - Gremlin (Disappearance)
Played by: Lancydulac Offline
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Posts: 1,359
MP: 229
#5
BASTIEN
Stimulation in body and soul
"Ah, you are after my own heart. Such a spread would soar the spirit." Bastien sighed, a hand over his heart; hopefully in the Voice's afterlife, she'd permit them at least a moment of enjoyment for such delicacies. Or maybe she'd make it so all that desire and want was gone, so that they could truly enjoy the simplistic life she had set out for them.

It was good to see Isla understood the magnitude of his meeting the Core. His eyes grew a little moist as she expressed her amazement and he could only shrug and shake his head in response to the question. "I don't know. I was given a location, in the Oeurwood. That is all I know...I will have to find out." He really had no idea what to expect; his mind had conjured up several different images by now. An ancient courtroom filled with ghosts, a secret underground kingdom of Ascended...he knew none of them would be right, but he hoped something just as grand might be in place. "I am going to ask Wessex, as she is the strongest among us. If I need anything else though, I will."

The Grounds seemed to be doing well in it's practical measures; Bastien nodded along, glad to hear of their new developments. "Wonderful. I am glad of our defenses against members of this 'Order' as well. Have you considered what we might next ask the Voice to provide for us? Some more defenses may be in order, or perhaps something more offensive. I guess it depends what role we are desiring for in this fight."
For the good and misguided
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Isla Lockwood
the Remedy
Overseer of the Hollowed Grounds / Medic

Age: 27 | Height: 5'7 | Race: Ascended | Nationality: Outlander | Citizenship: Hollowed Grounds
Level: 6 - Strg: 20 - Dext: 22 - Endr: 19 - Luck: 12 - Int:
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#6
ISLA

"The Oerwoud... that's a ways away," Isla admits, unable to imagine what might be out there for the Ascended, or why the Core would suggest Bastien go so far away from home. "Wessex is a very good idea," she agrees with a gentle nod. "I'll make sure that I hold the fort here while you're away. Fingers crossed you come back with some good news." Or maybe even something that might help them with the war.

Shifting to get more comfortable in her seat, Isla shakes her head a bit and gives it some consideration. "Once the Spire is complete, I suppose we are at a crossroads. We are defended against the Order, and we have something to help defend the Grounds if needed. So far we seem to be making this place into a sanctuary to defend. Would you want to continue in that way?"
she's a runner
rebel, and a stunner
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Bastien De Rosieres
the Dionysian
Overseer of the Hollowed Grounds / Artist / Ambassador

Age: 36 | Height: 6' 2" | Race: Ascended | Nationality: Outlander | Citizenship: Hollowed Grounds
Level: 5 - Strg: 20 - Dext: 22 - Endr: 20 - Luck: 12 - Int:
PITTORE - Mythical - Gremlin (Disappearance)
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#7
BASTIEN
Stimulation in body and soul
"It is, but we are in a very good position for travel. No need to sleep or pack food, no concerns for the temperature. We need to move at night or when it is dreary, but..." Bastien shrugged. "I feel more prepared now to undertake such a journey than I ever did before Ascension." Not that he'd made many jungle-treks before, but the benefits of their race did come into play when it came to long haul travel.

Smiling and nodding at her promise to keep things running while he was gone, he found he had every faith in her abilities. "Wonderful. At the very least, I hope to return with some information."

"I think it's in our best interests to make sure these Grounds are somewhere we can flee and be sure of safety - in a worst case situation. If we are defeated elsewhere, it would be valuable to have a fortress to retreat into." It had to be here, because they had the foundations down; they had the beginnings of something that actually made him feel safe. "In terms of numbers, we simply cannot hope to overtake the Old Gods followers. It...is depressing, but it is the truth." Rubbing his mouth, Bastien shook his head. "Do you ever worry it is hopeless? I try to be optimistic, but sometimes the thought does cross my mind..."
For the good and misguided
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Isla Lockwood
the Remedy
Overseer of the Hollowed Grounds / Medic

Age: 27 | Height: 5'7 | Race: Ascended | Nationality: Outlander | Citizenship: Hollowed Grounds
Level: 6 - Strg: 20 - Dext: 22 - Endr: 19 - Luck: 12 - Int:
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#8
ISLA

"I know you'd never return empty handed if you can help it," Isla agrees with a smile. One didn't go so far away from home without doing their best to make it worthwhile, after all.

Bastien's points about the Grounds are good ones, too, and Isla nods as she tugs at a loose thread on the sleeve of her shirt. "Then perhaps after the spire is finished we could ask for further defences for it. We could use the Spire as our fortress," she suggests.

Because it is depressing, mostly because it's very true - they're outgunned and outmanned, but as it stands, they're not yet outplanned (buck buck buck buck buck!) and if they work hard enough, perhaps they can level the playing field.

"Sometimes," Isla admits with a sad smile. "But then I have to remember that we are all people, regardless of which side of the coin we fall. I still have friends who are with the Old Gods, and I know I'm not the only one. I don't think the Voice would eradicate everyone in the same way the heralds are threatening."
she's a runner
rebel, and a stunner
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Bastien De Rosieres
the Dionysian
Overseer of the Hollowed Grounds / Artist / Ambassador

Age: 36 | Height: 6' 2" | Race: Ascended | Nationality: Outlander | Citizenship: Hollowed Grounds
Level: 5 - Strg: 20 - Dext: 22 - Endr: 20 - Luck: 12 - Int:
PITTORE - Mythical - Gremlin (Disappearance)
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#9
BASTIEN
Stimulation in body and soul
"Hopefully not. I can only dream that I am capable enough for whatever the Core has set out. I don't even know if the Voice knows of it - are they connected, or are they separate beings?" Bastien mused, rubbing a finger on his chin. He'd never seen them together, but then he'd only seen the Core once at all. "There is much the Voice does not tell us."

He had once had romantic notions about turning the Spire into a beautiful temple, but Isla was right that it better served their purposes now as a military building. "It should be a simple matter for the Voice to provide us with something that will allow only Ascended to enter. Then, if it came to it, we could hide within for some time - without the need to eat, we have much more patience than the others." Speaking of them as 'others' tugged as his heart a bit as Bastien thought of those he had known that were now firmly 'on the other side' - Ronin, Remi, Amalia...friends ripped away by the Gods and their meaningless feud.

"No, I do not think the Voice would either. Unfortunately, the chances of her winning seem....very small, to me. I would like to think there are many great secrets that will ensure our victory waiting around the corner, but I am a little too old for fairy stories." With a sigh, Bastien pushed a hand through his hair and looked around the room. "Do you know of any of these friends of yours that would be willing to come here and assist us? A more united, visible effort between the sides might inspire people."
For the good and misguided
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Isla Lockwood
the Remedy
Overseer of the Hollowed Grounds / Medic

Age: 27 | Height: 5'7 | Race: Ascended | Nationality: Outlander | Citizenship: Hollowed Grounds
Level: 6 - Strg: 20 - Dext: 22 - Endr: 19 - Luck: 12 - Int:
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#10
ISLA

Isla is regrettably uninformed on most of the matters that Bastien speaks about, and she smiles apologetically. "I was dead when the Spire was first opened, she murmurs, "so I have never heard or seen the Core. It's something that I may ask the Voice about the next time I speak with her. Perhaps we can get answers about that, at least." As for the Voice knowing things that they don't? Isla's smile is sad this time. "I think that's probably true for all the gods, not just the Voice. A lot of the time, it must be for our own good." Knowledge is dangerous, after all.

Nodding her agreement - the Spire as a fortress is a matter that seems all but set in stone by now - the Remedy can only sigh and sag back into her seat as Bastien continues. "Once, perhaps... but not now," she admits with a gentle shake of her head. "Influence spreads... I don't know any of the Old Gods followers who would stand united with us. I have heard of neutrality within Halo, but... do you really think that's possible either?"
she's a runner
rebel, and a stunner
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Bastien De Rosieres
the Dionysian
Overseer of the Hollowed Grounds / Artist / Ambassador

Age: 36 | Height: 6' 2" | Race: Ascended | Nationality: Outlander | Citizenship: Hollowed Grounds
Level: 5 - Strg: 20 - Dext: 22 - Endr: 20 - Luck: 12 - Int:
PITTORE - Mythical - Gremlin (Disappearance)
Played by: Lancydulac Offline
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Posts: 1,359
MP: 229
#11
BASTIEN
Stimulation in body and soul
"Ah." Once he might have found it odd to hear someone so casually mention once being dead, but that was a depressingly common thing nowadays in Caido. So many came back - and yet not Rexanna. If Bastien dwindled on it for too long, he would be lost for the rest of the evening, so he attempted to refocus. "Yes...I had actually wanted to speak to the Voice myself about our town and plans for it when the Core appeared. I think it would be a good idea for you to see her soon. Find out her words for us."

He didn't want to pursue a line only to find out their Goddess didn't approve of it, after all. Bastien had already done that once, with another Goddess a long time ago, and it hadn't worked out.

As for Halo...Bastien felt much the same as Isla looked, slumped back in her chair. "I think it's a noble goal, but...bah, I hate this pessimism that has taken me over. Merely months ago I was striving for the same." Maybe it was becoming responsible for others that had opened his eyes to the realities of the war. "I do think it would worth taking a list of the people that wish to remain in the Grounds and would want the protection of the Ascended. Then we know exactly who we have to defend."
For the good and misguided
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Isla Lockwood
the Remedy
Overseer of the Hollowed Grounds / Medic

Age: 27 | Height: 5'7 | Race: Ascended | Nationality: Outlander | Citizenship: Hollowed Grounds
Level: 6 - Strg: 20 - Dext: 22 - Endr: 19 - Luck: 12 - Int:
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#12
ISLA

"Oh, I see. The Core must have had more important plans for you, then. You ought to be proud," Isla says jokingly, though it's true enough. She might not have ever met their goddess's other(?) half, but she knows enough to know something like this is a Big Deal. "I will have to make a list of things to ask her, the next time I go to visit her." Not one to ask too much at once, though, Isla will wait until their current machinations for the Spire have worked out first.

She manages a smile for Bastien as they both seem to realise how negative their conversation has turned; Isla wonders if it wasn't worth getting some wine or tea just for the illusion of hospitality to perk things up a bit. "Well, I'll be hosting something shortly about the Spire's defence system anyway. So it might be worth using that meeting to discuss this as well. It's all about the future of the Grounds, after all."
she's a runner
rebel, and a stunner
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Bastien De Rosieres
the Dionysian
Overseer of the Hollowed Grounds / Artist / Ambassador

Age: 36 | Height: 6' 2" | Race: Ascended | Nationality: Outlander | Citizenship: Hollowed Grounds
Level: 5 - Strg: 20 - Dext: 22 - Endr: 20 - Luck: 12 - Int:
PITTORE - Mythical - Gremlin (Disappearance)
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Posts: 1,359
MP: 229
#13
BASTIEN
Stimulation in body and soul
"Ha. Once, I would have jumped on such a compliment, but now I find that I'd rather anyone else had received the message." If it had been intentional, if he had been selected, all he could wonder was why, when there were people so much more competent at leading, at fighting. Bastien had his strengths and no problems knowing them, but this sort of thing had never been his mainstay.

At Isla's words he sat up, pulled a crumpled piece of paper from his pocket and handed it over. "This was my list, just in case there's anything on there you think worthwhile. One day we really must go together."

Nodding at the meeting, he quietly pressed his hands together and looked down at the floor, aware too of the sombre mood. That was where they were though, wasn't it? Stood indefinitely on the precipice of chaos and death with no way to move away from it. Rather than pull them out of it, Bastien leant into it, asking: "...On another note, and I do hope this is not too personal, but...could you tell me what it was like? Being...with the Voice, after this life? I am sure you can imagine why I am curious."
For the good and misguided
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Isla Lockwood
the Remedy
Overseer of the Hollowed Grounds / Medic

Age: 27 | Height: 5'7 | Race: Ascended | Nationality: Outlander | Citizenship: Hollowed Grounds
Level: 6 - Strg: 20 - Dext: 22 - Endr: 19 - Luck: 12 - Int:
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#14
ISLA

"I think we are all starting to feel that way," Isla agrees with a soft laugh, the sound almost uncharacteristic given the solemnity of their meeting. "I remember a time when the barrier was still up, and so many of us were begging for the gods' attention. Now it feels like we're all trying to be as inconspicious as possible, doesn't it?" For the likes of the two of them, though, they're don't really have the luxury of shying away. The title of Overseer was more than just a word.

Still, as Bastien produces his list, however crumpled, Isla accepts it gratefully. "We should," she agrees, smoothing it out further and glancing over it. "For our next defensive work with the Voice, maybe. We'll approach her as a united front." Not that they aren't united on things anyway, but at least they can make it a more public effort.

But then the conversation takes a more intimate turn, and Isla feels it as silver flushes across her cheeks. "I don't actually know," she confesses. "When I died at LongNight, my soul was put into a unicorn so I could act as a companion to Remi. I never went to the Voice. When he killed me a second time, I was with Mort. But if being with the Voice is anything like that, then... it was quite wonderful."
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rebel, and a stunner
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