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  1. #131

    Re: Ultra Blue [confidant_v & StainedCrimson]

    Catriona almost didn't believe he had heard correctly. Stillang accepted his proposal? He truly accepted him and wanted to be his husband. The young mercury's breath caught in his throat as his head shot up to look at the man he so dearly cared for. Forcing himself to breath, he watched as Stillang walked closer to him and listened to the words he said. Tears formed in Catriona's eyes as Stillang offered him things he never knew he so desperately wanted. A caring home. A loving family. Kind friends. A place where he was welcomed rather than viewed as an outsider or worse, some strange creature that shouldn't exist. All his life he'd been seeking a place to call home and Catriona finally found it here with the Cobalts and Stillang.

    Stillang continued to offer his gifts, and eventually asked Catriona that one special question. "Yes!" Catriona cried through his tears with no hesitation. "Yes, yes! I accept your gifts. I accept you. Yes yes yes I'll marry you, Stillang." Catriona couldn't contain his grin as he was presented as Stillang's new betrothed. This was all a dream. It all had to be a dream. These types of wonderful things didn't happen to someone like him. Surely, he'd wake up from this dream in his own bedroom with his father screaming at him about something.

    But until then he'd enjoy this fantasy. The new couple were swept away to where a large celebration was held. When was the last time Catriona had celebrated? The food looked incredible, music was playing, the room was decadent and beautiful, and it was all for them. All for Catriona and Stillang. "Oh!" Catriona was shaken from his admiration of the room when something crashed into him. That something was none other than little Tam, grabbing his best friend in a tight hug around his waist. Without wasting a moment, Catriona returned the hug, a warm smile forming on his face. "And what's this for, Tam?"

    "I'm so happy for you, Catri! And you too, Lord Stillang!" Tam focused his attention on the other man, grabbing him in a hug as well. "You didn't tell me you were spending time with Lord Stillang like this, Catri! I wouldn't have been mad about you not hanging out with me!"

    "I'm sorry, Tam."

    "You're one of us now!" Tam barely let Catriona get a word in edge wise in his excitement. "You're a Cobalt now! Are you gonna live with us? Or are you gonna go back to the Mercury Kingdom? Maybe switch off? Can I visit you when you go back to the Mercury Kingdom? Is it dangerous? Is everything made of mercury? Is it toxic? Is Lord Stillang gonna live with you there too?"

    "Mercy, child, give them a minute to enjoy their engagement before you bombard them with questions." Altria sauntered up to the group, bowing to both Catriona and Lord Stillang. "Congratulations, you two. Blessings upon you both." The chef would have teased young Catriona and reminisced about the first time they met had she not noticed something odd. She blinked a few times and tilted her head at the mercury before grinning widely. "Looks like Tam is right. You really are one of us." She grinned as she motioned for Lord Stillang to take a look at his new partner. Where they were standing the light hit them in such a way that Altria's skin reflected onto Catriona's silver. In that moment, he was no longer silver, but rather looked much any given person from the Cobalt Kingdom.

    Though he couldn't see it, he appreciated Altria explaining what she saw. In his happiness, he held tightly to Stillang's hand and placed a light kiss on it. This small phenomena happened continuously throughout the night in various areas where the light hit him just right. Though, as the festivities continued, Catriona found himself more separated from Stillang. Many wanted to congratulate them; several of Stillang's admirers bowed to Catriona then shook his hand, squeezing a bit tighter than was necessary.

    "Petty," Catriona whispered as one stepped away. He shook his hand out to get rid of the pain as he set out to look for his betrothed once again. "Stillang?" He soon found him and wrapped his arms around his chest, smiling up at the man who made his heart pound of his chest. Once things died down some he'd work to find Livius, but until then he'd enjoy this small moment with Stillang. "Will you dance with me, my love? Please?" The music had just changed to a slow, gentle ballad and all Catriona wanted to do was rest in his love's arms and enjoy his warmth.

  2. #132
    Ultimate Yaoi Expert StainedCrimson's Avatar
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    Re: Ultra Blue [confidant_v & StainedCrimson]

    Stillang enjoys the others happiness and surprise at him having accepted the proposal as well as his own gifts. During the celebratory party after, he lets the cobalts take his fiance a little ways from him knowing that they want to meet and see the mercury for themselves. That's not to say he lets the other be taken too far out from him, certainly not out of sight, but instead allows the other to learn to swim the waters a bit on his own.

    Besides, he knows that Catriona won't stray far and is proven right when the other returns and squeezes his hand. Plus there's nothing dangerous here to worry about, or at least not near the level that would be found in the Mercury Clan's walls. When Altria and Tam come join them and give their own congratulations and welcome to his betrothed, Stillang gives them a small pleased smile. Seeing his people accept and welcome his chosen is something that makes him proud and happy.

    The sudden hug takes him by surprise, but not for long. At the request, and the following endearment, he graces Catriona with a small warm smile. "Let us dance then." Shifting he takes hold of his small mercury and guides him in the dance, their bodies close except for the barest breath of space that was kept between them as was part of the dance itself. At the end the cobalt leader gently tilts the other's face up, a finger pushing under a silver chin, and places a light kiss upon the upraised lips.

    Those who witness the act cheer and soon many others do as well, even when he pulls apart and gives a small smile and nod. Eventually things begin to die down as cobalts leave to go to bed or wander off. Stillang looks down at Catriona and gently brushes some hair out of the other's face. "It is time for us to part ways for now. We will have plans to make tomorrow and we'll want to be well rested for that."

    He gives a faint smirk. "Try to get some sleep and not pine for me too much." With the light tease he gives a light parting kiss to the mercury before motioning someone over to make sure that he gets to his room. Naturally this proves to be Livius who gives a small bow with a smile.

    "My lord... Catriona. Congratulations." The words are simple, but genuine. He looks at the mercury and smirks with an eyebrow rising. "Seems you had nothing to fear or be jealous of hmm?" Livius teases in a slightly haughty teasing tone before giving Stillang another bow before guiding the mercury away. "Let's be off then. You'll have much to deal with tomorrow and you'll want your energy for it."

  3. #133

    Re: Ultra Blue [confidant_v & StainedCrimson]

    Catriona was sure the disappointment showed in his expression when Stillang said they'd be separated tonight. After today's emotional rollercoaster Catriona doubted he'd do much except sleep, but he still wanted to join Stillang in his bed. Especially after getting another taste of those perfect lips, chaste as the kiss was. It still sent shivers down Catriona's spine and he could still hardly believe that he and the Cobalt leader were betrothed. He looked forward to what other things Stillang had to show him, but he knew there was no choice but to wait. One more day of waiting would be fine. One more day and Catriona could rest in his love's arms every night from here on out.

    The disappointment on his face vanished when Livius seemed to glide up to them like the elegant thing he was. "There's still plenty to be jealous of, Livlus." Catriona returned the bow to show how much he respected this man whose friendship he almost destroyed from the very beginning. A new dream of Catriona's was to one day be a role model to some poor, helpless, possibly terrible person just as Livius was to him. With a wave to his new fiance, Catriona followed Livius away from the dying festivities. He was silent for the most part, content to just follow the man as they made their way to his room. Only when they were to separate did he bow his head to Livius.

    "I hope to still learn from you, Livius. I think I see you as something of an older brother. You know... One who doesn't wish to drown me." Catriona chuckled softly, only now realizing how odd he must have sounded when so casually speaking about his attempted murder. In his heart he still felt calm about it; after all, it was nothing new for a kingdom as abrasive as the Mercury Kingdom, but he knew in his head how wrong it was. If he had more than one child the last thing he would want is to see them attempt to hurt one another let alone try to kill each other. "Should I find you your own little Arialoris when I eventually go back home? You'd like a mercury to call your own, wouldn't you?" Another small laugh escaped Catriona as he teased his friend. Though on the topic of Arialoris...

    "You don't find me strange?" he asked, avoiding Livius' gaze as he shifted and squeezed his fingers. "Or... Disgusting? I overheard some people talking at the celebration and... Well, you can imagine what some of them are saying if you didn't hear it yourself. I just... I don't know. I care about what you think of me. I care about what the other clan members think of me too, but more so you. If I sicken you, then I wouldn't ask you to spend time with me anymore." Once Livius answers him, Catriona gives him another bow then retreats to his room.

    Once inside he took off his clothes then flopped onto his bed. He recalled Stillang's words of not pinning for him while they were apart and Catriona knew he'd never be able to keep the promise. He wondered how much Stillang was thinking of him, if he knew that Catriona was simply staring at his ceiling while thinking about how nice it would be to lay in his arms. To kiss him. To touch him. Why did they have to be apart tonight? Well, he supposed they had the rest of their lives to laze in bed together. Sleep didn't come to him at all during the night, but there no sense of tiredness in him once morning came. With more enthusiasm than he felt his entire life, he jumped up, got ready and headed down for breakfast.

    "Hello, Livius," he said when he arrived. "I'm excited to get started today. I'd like to learn what all is expected of me now."

    These customs were new to him, but he wanted to learn them perfectly.

    He was a cobalt now, after all.

  4. #134
    Ultimate Yaoi Expert StainedCrimson's Avatar
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    Re: Ultra Blue [confidant_v & StainedCrimson]

    Livius raises an eyebrow and lightly purses his lips. "If I thought such do you really think that I'd congratulate you or spend more time with you?" He sniffs. "Impertinent child." Sighing and waving a hand in a lazy dismissive gesture he continues. "Do I find a male who can give birth strange? Yes. Most would who did not know such a thing was possible. However, it allows you to give our lord his ideal outcome and make him happy. That is what matters more to me." He eyes the other out of the corner of his eye. "So with that in mind both of you had best live up to your gifts."

    With his words passed along he heads back to his own quarters to relax for the remainder of the night. The cobalt enjoys the quiet and passes time with his thoughts before heading to bed. The next day he gets up a touch late as he had luxuriated in sleeping in for a change. Eventually he gets up and readies himself for the whirlwind that the now betrothed of Stillang will be.

    True to his prediction, Catriona is firing off first thing. Without responding beyond an ever so slightly raised eyebrow, he looks at the young male while taking a long sip of his coffee, then slowly sets it to the side. "Good morning to you as well Catriona. I'm doing well this morning, thank you for asking." He states in a low, yet overly bright tone and showing far more teeth than necessary.

    Breathing heavily out of his nose the cobalt takes another calming sip of his coffee before answering the other's question. "Now then. The first thing you'll need to do, before worrying about any expectations of your role besides eventually providing an heir, is to plan your wedding with Lord Stillang." He states in a slow tone as if speaking to someone incredibly dense.

    Stillang walks in on the last part and laughs. "Be nice Livius. He's just excited. However," He looks over at Catriona with a faint smile. "he isn't wrong. We have much to do and before we can do anything to formalize our relationship" i.e. sex "we're going to have to have to get married first. That means picking a date, food, and of course invite people." Tilting his head, the cobalt leader taps an absent finger on the table. "Speaking of, how shall we inform your parents of our engagement and invite them to the wedding?"

  5. #135

    Re: Ultra Blue [confidant_v & StainedCrimson]

    If it were possible for Catriona skin to no longer look silver, now would be the time it happened. All of the color practically drained from his face at the mention of his parents. The young man had been so caught up in marriage bliss that he hadn't even thought of those horrible people. There was no way they could come to the wedding. Hell, Catriona didn't want them to even know about it. Frankly, his life would be easier if the two of them died tomorrow. Better harm come to them than harm come to him.

    In his shock, Catriona simply stared at Stillang until someone came around and congratulated him with a hefty clap on his shoulder. He put on a smile and thanked the man before focusing back on the issue at hand. "I don't want them to come," he said simply, quietly so no one else around them could hear him. There were so many factors about this that Stillang didn't know. The truth was Catriona felt as if his life would be in danger if his parents found out about their engagement. This was the perfect excuse for Ares to finally finish the job he felt should have been done years ago. And his mother, Catarina... Catriona was even more frightened of her than he was of Ares. If Ares provided him with physical abuse, then Catarina was an expert in mental abuse.

    "Can we talk about this in private, Stillang?" he asked, his voice seizing as he tried to hold back tears he didn't even know threatened to fall. "Please. I don't mind if Livius joins us, but otherwise...." He couldn't talk about this in public lest he have a full meltdown in front of the people he was working so hard to gain respect from. Once breakfast was over, Catriona met with Stillang in his office. His hands were trembling and he tried to steady them by combing them through his ponytail as he often did when stressed, but that proved ineffective. He took a few moments to gather himself and his thoughts, simply sitting in the chair and staring at the wall before he finally found the inner strength to speak.

    "I understand fully that my parents must know of our engagement. However, I am... I suppose I'm frightened." He finally turned his head towards Stillang to look his soon to be husband in the eye. "You already know that Arialoris are looked down upon. I am no exception. My parents hate me for what I am. Even my mother who I'm named after can't believe she gave birth to me. They'd have no qualms if I decided to marry a woman, but if they found out I'm to marry a man..." He shook his head, nearly pulling his hair at this point. "I genuinely fear they'd attempt to kill me, Stillang. It sounds insane, but you know how the Mercury Clan is. Royals killing one another is a typical thing. It's insane; it's so mad, Stillang, but it's true. The embarrassment they'd feel knowing I wanted and planned to give birth would drive them over the edge. They wouldn't care if killing me destroyed any relationship that could form between the Cobalt and Mercury clans. They'd simply want me gone."

    Catriona supposed he could simply exchange the throne for his life. Give up on being the prince of the Mercury Kingdom and dedicate himself wholly to the Cobalt Clan. However, he already promised Stillang assistance from the Mercury Clan as one of his proposal gifts and he certainly didn't want to go back on his word. Killing his parents was also an option for him. After all he was still a mercury at heart, but he wasn't sure how keen Stillang would be on that.

    "I don't know what to do."

  6. #136
    Ultimate Yaoi Expert StainedCrimson's Avatar
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    Re: Ultra Blue [confidant_v & StainedCrimson]

    Stillang isn't particularly surprised by Catriona's initial reaction to the question. In fact, the only other response he would have epected was excitement at the chance to rub the whole affair in his parents' faces. The request to speak in private surprises him a touch though. The cobalt leader sits and waits for the explanation for the request and refusal of wanting to have his parents attend the wedding, or even know about it.

    He listens, as does Livius, without interruption. Once the mercury has finished Stillang steeples his fingers before him in thought for a moment before spreading his hands in front of him slightly. "I hear and understand your concern, and this information raises my concern about them being present." He takes a moment to draw a small breath. "That being said, as a leader I have to also consider the ramifications politically that my actions can cause. The risk we face at not notifying your parents of the engagement and invite them to the wedding is... very high. Your parents would not react well to receiving no notice of either event."

    He is sure that Catriona will agree on that point. Notifying the leaders of the Mercury Clan after the fact would be a good way to invite their wrath and possibly start a war. Not an ideal outcome. Not that the potential assassination of his fiance is better. "We can do it this way, as an attempt to compromise. They will receive news of your engagement and an invite to the wedding with just enough time for them to make it. We shall make it seem that it is due to something that occurred between you an an unnamed cobalt, though high ranking enough to merit action be taken, that demanded you either marry them or lose a few limbs. You decided marriage was a more agreeable outcome and so we moved for a fast wedding to prevent you either running away or trying to sabotage things to get out of it."

    Shrugging slightly he turns it back to his betrothed. "How we phrase things exactly can be left up to you, but I think that with your parents being somewhat vague and meeting their expectations of you is the best way to catch them unaware, yet keep them agreeable until it is too late. You know your parents best, however, in terms of the best way to maneuver them with familial matters. I'm willing to listen to any suggestions or alternatives you have to offer, but the end result must be that they get an invite to the wedding."

  7. #137

    Re: Ultra Blue [confidant_v & StainedCrimson]

    Catriona listened to Stillang, slightly in awe of how quickly he came up with a solution. He was certainly a reasonable and clever man, and Catriona was sure he was only skimming the surface of just how clever Stillang could be. Still, having his parents around him for such a significant event bothered him. The suggestion to just kill them was still on the tip of his tongue and had this conversation happened just a few weeks back he might have very well let it unashamedly slip from his lips. After all, the young prince knew very well that his life was in danger so why not nip the situation it the bud while he could? Was it worth it to even suggest such a thing? Would Stillang even take the idea seriously?

    With a sigh, Catriona swallowed his potential suggestion down. It wasn't gone, but he wanted to take a few moments to figure out how he might phrase this without sounding like he was just another murderous mercury. "Your idea works," he finally said in a shaky voice. As far as he knew Stillang hadn't sent messages to Ares about Catriona's progress, and Catriona himself certainly didn't bother to speak to his parents. They'd have no idea that this was just a rouse. "It's the best option if they have to show up. They'd have no time to halt the wedding and hopefully we can send them off quickly. We'd have to be careful of whatever they plan to do afterwards. I still fear that at worst they'd kill me and at best they'd disown me. In which case, my promise to provide you with support from the Mercury Kingdom would be nullified, though I'd like to avoid that at all costs as well." He'd rather not have to take back one of my main gifts before he even had the chance to deliver on it. His parents truly made things more complicated than they needed to be.

    Another heavy sigh escaped Catriona as he racked his brain for an option that didn't involve killing his parents. He supposed this became a very good example of how the Mercury Kingdom operated. Dispose of all problems indefinitely. No questions asked. Flat out murder wasn't an option, however. This Catriona knew. On top of that he didn't exactly want Stillang to view him as someone who was more than willing to commit patricide and matricide for reasons that he couldn't prove were true. The mark of insanity could easily be placed on the young man, or even more simple than that, the mark of a cold-blooded murderer.

    "If..." Catriona started, keeping his eyes downcast and biting his lip as he thought about how he could phrase this. "Regardless of whether or not this plan works, I know my parents will try to harm me. Even if they go back home and we don't hear from them for months I fear that it is simply because they are planning my demise with pinpoint accuracy. Stillang, I..." He bit his lip again, taking a deep breath before continuing. "If it comes to it that my life is blatantly, obviously in danger, then I want you to know that... How to put this... Frankly, if it comes down to my life or theirs, then I want it to be the survivor. I don't want to die when I've only just started to live. I don't want you to think me a terrible person for even suggesting killing my parents, but they'd have no qualms killing their son. Should the only option for my defense be their deaths, then I ask you to accept that." Catriona squeezed his robe tightly, so much so that his knuckles lightened to a pale silver. He knew he was suggesting something horrific, but this seemed to be the only option if his parents were truly intent on his death. Perhaps he was being paranoid, but he'd rather be safe than sorry.

    All he needed was for to Stillang to know that.

  8. #138
    Ultimate Yaoi Expert StainedCrimson's Avatar
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    Re: Ultra Blue [confidant_v & StainedCrimson]

    Stillang gives the mercury a slow blink, an eyebrow raising ever-so-slightly, before replying. "That goes without saying. When all is said and done your life is more important to me than theirs, without question. It is simply a given." As if the cold, arrogant and cruel Mercury clan leaders lives would matter to him. Honestly it would make things much simpler for the cobalt leader if they were gone, but that is not the way of his people and he is not one to endorse unnecessary bloodshed. Though retaliation should they open the door is well within my right and nature.

    Turning back to the other cobalt Stillang gives the order to go ahead with the wedding preparations. "We'll have to invite other allies of course, but we'll want to be mindful of just how much advance notice we give them to make sure that word doesn't reach the Mercury clan prematurely." Livius nods. "Other than that I trust your expertise, and naturally my fiance will have primary say in what he would like to have implemented and blended with our ways. I'll give my input only when asked." He gives a faint playful smile at the two other males.

    Suddenly the cobalt leader gets a playful and mischievous gleam in his eye as he decides to tease the young mercury a bit. "Now then, do you think we should invite the parents to be part of the bedding ritual?" Livius tilts his head in pretend thought while fighting to keep his face from showing his amusement.

    "Hmm, it might be worth offering to include them in bringing Catriona to the marriage bed, but it might be pushing propriety a touch in letting them watch their son consummate his marriage." The designer taps his chin with a finger a few times before looking at said mercury. "What do you think? Should we see include them in being witnesses of your wedding consummation?"

    Somehow both cobalts manage to keep open and curious expressions without laughing or smiling as they await the other's reaction to their little joke. The bedding ritual and witnessing of the consummation is outdated tradition and no longer adhered to unless one of the individuals come from a very traditional family and it is made a requirement of going through with the marriage.

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