Logs:Summer's End

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Summer's End
Dramatis Personae

Kyrie, Ryan, Alireza, Tock, Lena, Owen, Mirabella, Russ, Olivia, Brand, Fancy, Melissa, Dora

16 September 2015



Arena - Valhalla – Hedge

This cavern is large, about half the size of a football field. The walls and ceiling are made of a black stone, shot through with silvery veins which glow, providing all the light that's needed. The open cavern is circled by a walkway, where the other caverns exit to. Directly beneath that walkway are stone stands and pavilions where people can watch the action happening further down, where the cavern flattens out and forms an oval-shaped arena.

The arena is a good six feet lower than the lowest of the stands, and there's a wall which separate the two. Hanging on the wall, at eight feet intervals, are wooden shields, each painted or decorated differently. At one end of the oval is a small room which holds regenerating targets that can be used for target practice or combat training. At the other end are racks of weapons and armor that can be used by those who don't have their own. There's a doorway there, too, leading to the armory, which holds a wider range of weapons, along with more armor.

The rooms that circle the arena are widely varied in purpose. There is a clinic with cots and a good deal of equipment, including a fridge for blood. Another room holds a forge for those who want to make their own gear. There are also small bedrooms for those who stay here or those who just need to crash at Valhalla for the night, along with showers for those who have gotten ripe. Nearby is a well-stocked kitchen, complete with fridges which always seem to hold a variety of food and drink. Near the kitchen is a parlor, of sorts, with a dining table, sofas, a bulletin board, and even a living chess set that makes the moves when told to. Another tunnel splits off, one side leading to a brightly lit garden with an assortment of hedge fruit. The other side leads down beneath the arena to a modest underground lake.

Valhalla has once again been decorated...if what's been done can really be called decoration. There are tables spread about with food and drink, and there are more chairs available, though they're of the lawn and patio variety rather than the more comfortable ones found in the parlor. More, in the center of the arena floor is a bonfire. Luckily, the arena is big and the cave ceiling tall, so nothing is really in danger of catching on fire. There are chairs down there as well, along with a small table that has the makings for s'mores, along with sticks for roasting marshmallows, as well as a couple of coolers, sorted into water, non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages.

A large charcoal grill, ready to cook up traditional summer-backyard-barbeque fare is setup near the garden, manned by Ryan Butler. The grilling options include beef, turkey, or veggie burgers, beef hot dogs, kielbasa sausages, baby back pork ribs with a peach BBQ sauce, and grill corn on the cob with garlic butter and lime. A big trestle table is set up nearby with condiments, buns, plates, utensils, and a small mountain of napkins. Upon the table are baked beans, pasta salad with tomato, carrot, celery, red peppers, green onion, and parmesan cheese, potato salad with bacon and hardboiled egg, and mixed fruit (blackberry, strawberry, and apple wedges) with fresh whipped cream.

A party? What party would be complete without those of the Spring court arriving, and one such fabulous individual is Alireza. Of course not wishing to disappoint the lady of the place, he arrives atop his magic carpet, presuming of course that she might be more interested in his mode of transport than himself. His own self is of course enrobed in hedgespun cloth in creams and golds, and he comes bearing gifts, a bottle in each hand being a proper balance for a feast.

This evening Tock is dressed all in metallics: a full-length dress consisting of an antique gold silk sheath with a light silver netting overdress, edged in bright gold bordering that bears a distinctive Byzantine sun disc pattern. A fascinator featuring a gold silk lily decorates her hair, a gold woven metal necklace clasps the silver locket at her throat, and a silver woven metal bracelet circles one wrist. She is an early arrival, having popped in with the express purpose of assisting with any of those set-up or fetching needs that have a tendency to surface last-minute.

And the hostess? She's down by the fire. Because where else would a summer valkyrie be? She glances up at the movement from the carpet and brightens. "Hey Ali," she calls, before grinning over at Tock. "He only brings that thing to torment me, you know," she informs the woman.

"No way,' says a booming voice, and a huge troll type - maybe nine plus feet tall - is peering down at a 'small' Owen, arms crossed. "Nope. You can't." Owen peers up at the other man, turning his baseball cap backwards and tossing his Oakley ballistic glasses to one side. "OK. I do it, you buy all the beer I want for a week," he says. "Deal. But you gotta make me scream -and- fall down. And no multiple crap either," he says as he settles into a fighting stance, "Deal," says Owen - they're over away from the bon fire. The big man throws a lazy right and Owen ducks under it, taking a knife hand and slamming it down behind the big man's knee.

The leg goes dead and the man does teeter and fall as Owen drops down to wrap the man into a headlock, his head down near the other man's chest as he leans into it with bulging forearms. Right about then the crazy intense pins and needles start as the nerves refire on that dead leg and the man does in fact scream - muffled - and after a few seconds taps rapidly on Owen's back. Owen rolls over, leaning down to check the man's leg and rub behind the knee. "Give it a few. And bro? I got an A in Anatomy. That's some NINJA level shit there!" He rises as the big man calls as Owen begins to head for the food, "No fancy ass beer either, Thorpe! Cheap stuff!"

Owen is grinning as he walks away, throwing his Oakeys into a pocket and reversing his baseball cap and lifting his arms in victory, "What what! NINJA! GO NINJA GO NINJA GO!" he says as he begins to head for the beer and grilled foods.

It should be added that the Hungry Ones mantle is noticeably more powerful now.

Ryan is over by the garden, manning the grill. The Drudge is dressed in plain and casual mortal clothing, as if for a perfectly normal back yard barbeque on a late-summer afternoon. At present he is stoking the coals and arranging trays of ready food, preparing for a horde of hungry Lost. Alireza's arrival atop the magic carpet cause Ryan to blink, and his eyes track the flying rug across the cavern for a second before he remembers to wave. "Hello!" And the Wizened's expression goes a little quizzical for Owen and his larger companion, but now is not the time for question and answer. Instead Ryan calls a general invitation. "Come eat something!"

Lena's dressed in a long, breezy skirt and a nice, sleeveless blouse. In other words, she decided not to just show up in jeans and a band t-shirt like she often does, but isn't really going for fancy either. Comfortable, but nice. She strolls in, already smiling as a result of the loud voices she hears booming through the area, and which she heads toward. It sounds like that's where there's some entertainment to be found, right? As she wanders that way she searches around with her gaze, looking for anyone she knows to go over and talk to. No doubt she'll find a handful, and of course she does. She also spots food, which tempts her off her present course and in that direction. Sorry, familiar faces. You lose to dinner.

“I think 'torment' might be less the goal than 'tempt', considering the source,” Tock informs Kyrie with a grin before turning to wave greetings to her motley-mate. “Good evening, Ali! Making an entrance as usual.” Ryan's call only brightens her smile. “Do you all want anything? I saw fruit and cream that has been tempting me, and I can fetch something back with me.”

"Good point," Kyrie tells Tock, grinning still, before she leaves the fire to head toward the food with the others. "Any food or drink here is fair game, so make yourselves at home and enjoy yourself! There's stuff for s'mores down by the fire, too," she calls out.

"Ryan - Sup homie!" says Owen as he approaches and peers over, "Two corn, two kielbasa, two burgers, one hot dog," he decides as he begins to fill two plates, "Leave room for stuff later on. Oh dude, do these ribs have peach barbecue? OK, some ribs," he says as he takes a quarter rack. "Dude thank you!" he says to Ryan," and waves to Kyrie and the rest that he recognizes.

Landing the carpet beside Kyrie, Ali grins at the tempt comment. "My motley mate does know me all too well. What can I say, we all play to our strengths do we not?" He tilts his head and offers up the two bottles to the hostess, one looking Scottish and one looking French. "I couldn't figure out which you would prefer, so I chose a fifty year old scotch and a cognac of the same year." He makes a dismissive gesture at that. "One or the other, or perhaps both will do." He tilts his head glancing over towards the food options and considers. "Perhaps I will wait, I wouldn't want to get crushed in the initial rush," he murmurs seeing Owen on his way there already.

Someone is headed towards the food? Thank god, says Ryan's expression. And then he gets a good look at Lena, and simply stares for a second. Catching himself, the Wizened offers the woman a bright, encouraging smile and waves his spatula to beckon her closer. "Hello. Help yourself to whatever you like. Anything I can throw on the grill for you?" And then others are headed towards the food as well, and the cook beckons to Kyrie, as well. Whatever he was going to say to her is cut short by Owen, and Ryan flashes the big ogre a grin. And since he knows what he wants, Ryan gets right on it. "Coming right up," he says, throwing a little of everything on the grill, just to be safe.

Kyrie takes the bottles, brightening once more at the scotch. Who knew? "Thanks, Ali! This scotch will be /wonderful/, I don't doubt it. You probably have a point about the food, too. Or you can start with the s'mores or snacks until you can get to the proper food," she suggests. "You know Owen, Ryan and Lena, don't you?" she asks him. Ryan's busy cooking, grilling really. There's a bonfire in the center of the arena, with food and drinks everywhere. Including the makings for s'mores.

"Hello," Lena says to Ryan, returning his bright smile with one of her own, like the moon reflecting the sun's light. "So much of this already looks delicious, no need to throw anything special on the grill for me. I didn't catch your name, though, which means I don't know who I'll be thanking later when I thank the chef. I'm Lena." She doesn't offer him a hand, since he's brandishing a spatula and already has busy hands. Also, because her hands are already getting busy serving herself food. She hears her name, then, and looks up and around until she spots Kyrie, who gets a smile and a quick wave.

“Oh, you aren't so delicate a flower that this light an early crowd should offer a crush hazard,” Tock teases Ali, a faint glint of amusement in her crystal-like eyes. “Owen's enthusiastic about food, but unlikely to trample friendlies over it.” She chuckles at the mention of s'mores. “I do mean to try some of those eventually. Olivia and the others talked them up so.” A small detour finds her a small plate of the fruit with whipped cream and a cider before rejoining the group.

Mirabella enters, fashionably late. She's wearing a leather jacket over a loose-ish ruby tunic, jeans, and a pair of black boots. Not her most fashionable outfit, but she shrugs out of the leather jacket as if her appearance is a gift to the masses. "Hello darlings," she calls. She nods to Kyrie and hands her a bag from the liquor store. Inside is a bottle of good, chilled vodka, for a change of pace. "Thank you for hosting this. I probably can't stay long, but I at least wanted to drop this off, and mingle a little."

Owen grabs a beer, and goes to the s'more station, "Hell to the yeah," he grunts as he makes himself a small snack as Ryan is cooking - two double decker s'mores, plus three extra smores for strategic backup or handing out to others. He then begins to approach the rest, getting one of the doubledeckers down - politely - with sips of his beer as he approaches Kyrie and the others. "Sup," he tells the others, before his gaze settles on Lena and he begins to stare as she speaks.

Kyrie grins at Tock's teasing. "They do sound good," she agrees, nodding and waving to Lena. She transfers the cognac to be trapped between her arm and chest, to take the vodka with another grin. "My pleasure. And glad you could show up, even if only for a little bit. In the meantime, have fun and enjoy yourselves."

"The first two by name and face, the last I have not had the pleasure," Ali replies with a smile, and making a small hand gesture, the carpet curls up tightly to float behind him pretending to be attached to his back. "And I am as delicate a flower as I choose to be. It depends if it encourages people to want to be between myself and the trouble after all." He perhaps, has not this thing one may call...Shame. "And yes, starting with dessert does sound wonderful. It is perhaps, the second... no fourth most tempting thing here." He nods to himself, having firmly established an order for that.

Mirabella wanders toward Ryan finally, and nods to him across the grill. "Hey," she says to her motleymate. "Everything looks delicious, thank you. I hope you enjoy yourself," she says, with a smile.

Ryan's head tilts a bit to one side as Lena starts speaking to him, as if he's listening intently, and then he blinks when he realizes what she has said. "Oh! Sorry," he rushes to introduce himself. "I'm Ryan Butler. Nice to meet you, Lena." And he looks both enormously pleased and greatly relieved to see people dishing up. Spotting one of his motley-mates, the Wizened calls out to Mira. "Mirabella! " He smiles at the Fairest as she wanders over, nodding vigorously for her remarks. "Thank you. Eat something, please?" And then it's back to work over the grill, where Owen's order now sizzling and steaming, giving off the aroma of cooking meat.

"Bella!" calls Owen to Mirabella, waving as he puts away the second double decker s'more. He dabs his mouth with a napkin, and sips his beer, moving over to leave his two remaining s'mores near Ryan, "For calories bro, make sure you're hydrating too!" he says as he heads back to where Lena is, offering his right hand as his left takes the beer. Is he flexing his shoulders a bit? Mebbe. "Owen, Thorpe. Lena they said? Heya. Welcome. Anything we can get you?"

Tock offers waves to new arrivals and those that send greetings her way. She is already nibbling at her apples and berries, rather a clear vote on things that are tempting, at least. There is a deliberate not-asking about Ali's rating system. “You know I'll get between you and trouble and it has nothing to do with how well you might pretend at being a helpless dandy.” There is another fond grin flashed her motley-mate's way at that. “Have you at least had a chance to grab a drink, Kyrie? The people preparing events have a tendency to forget to tend themselves.”

Lena few eyes being pulled her way when she starts to speak isn't something Lena misses, nor something she's unaccustomed to. She briefly looks a bit sheepish about it, and when she answers Ryan she speaks more quietly. "It's a pleasure, Ryan," her cool, hypnotic voice says. "This all looks amazing, so thank you." Mirabella gets a big smile when she shows up and Lena, whose hands are now full of food, says, "Mira! I would give you a hug, but my hands are kind of occupied. It's good to see you, though." Owen gets a smile then too, more introductions coming her way and meeting warm welcome. "Owen Thorpe? As in there are like fifty Thorpes in town, and half of them are police officers? Good people, those I've met. I work for Maddy, at the Waffle House. It's great to meet you, and thank you for the offer, but I think I'm set at the moment." She lifts a plate full of food and smiles broadly.

Mirabella wanders around, then, picking up a plate full of goodies, and then heads for Lena. "Good evening, it's great to see you, too," she tells the entrancing voiced one. She grabs a soda and nods to Owen, Ali, and Tock. "Hey guys," she says cheerfully. She picks over the delicacies on her plate lightly, nibbling at some fruit and cheese. "Great party so far, Kyrie.”

Kyrie eyes the carpet as it rolls up, sighing softly. "Before you leave, I'm going to con you into giving me a ride on that," she tells Alireza before she grins at Tock. "Not yet, no. But I have three bottles of alcohol here to enjoy!" She shifts that grin over to Mirabella. "Thanks. I hope everyone enjoys themselves. Later, Brand's supposed to perform, even, so that'll be interesting."

"I am well aware Tock. But why not encourage more people hrm?" Ali chuckles though at the statement of being conned. "Hrmm, I will have to see what you can manage in a Con job. I'm afraid I don't have much faith that you will achieve your goal through that method." Offering a small wave to the arriving Mirabella, the greedy one goes forth to acquire desserts, placing one of each upon his plate more out of wanting to have it all than being particularly hungry. The s'more takes the longest of the efforts, but he does in fact return.

"Sweet. Yeah, Mads is a relative. Us Thorpes are big into service, you know? Just about everybody spends time in military service or law enforcement, fire, rescue, medical, that kinda thing. I'll have to let Maddie know to make sure you get some good hours, yeah?" says Owen as he takes a long sip from his beer. "Nice to meet ya Lena!"

“Hello, Mirabella. How have you been?” Tock returns her fellow Spring's greeting with a bright smile. “I don't know which way this con is working, Kyrie, since I'm pretty sure he's been angling for the ask.” It's an aside, but not a deliberately-quiet one. She giggles outright at Kyrie's three bottles declaration. “As long as you don't drink them all. Actually, I haven't the slightest idea of your alcohol tolerance... But /probably/ all of them is a bad plan for most people.”

Mirabella smiles to Kyrie. "That's awesome. I'm sorry I'll miss it." She smiles to Tock next. "I've been well, thank you, and yourself?" Then she finds a seat and settles in to nibble at her fruit and cheeses, and to balance her plate on her knee long enough to open her can of soda.

Ryan glances aside as Owen leaves him the two s'mores, and he laughs uncertainly at the ogre's offer. "Oh. Thank you, Owen. That's very kind of you." He offers the man a grateful smile. "Umm ... your food's going to be ready momentarily. Grab some plates? I think I can pile it all onto two." Then Lena's voice draws his attention back to her, and again Ryan takes a second to register the words she has spoken. "Uhhh ... you're welcome! Please let me know if there's anything I can get for you."

"I know," Lena agrees with Owen, every word she speaks tugging at the attention of those who can hear it. It's the kind of thing that could quickly get quite irritating for other people trying to hold a conversation, as wonderful as it might be to listen to for people who are talking to her. "I grew up in the area. I think over the course of my childhood, we had a half dozen different Officer Thorpes show up when neighbors called the police." She rolls her eyes a little bit as she makes a slight shrug with her shoulders. "Maddy treats me great, there's no need for you to to pressure her on my behalf." She takes a bite of one of the things on her plate and nods approvingly, making a soft noise of enjoyment that's just as distracting as her spoken words.

Kyrie grins at Tock. "I'm an ogre." That's all she says about the alcohol. To Ali, she laughs. "You're right. I'll probably just end up asking. I don't have your subtlety for cons. And bloody hell. Did Owen just /give/ someone food?" she asks, sounding astonished.

Owen wanders over to Ryan and snags two plates, arranging them just so. "Sure, sure. You want me to get digits?" he asks the other man sotto-voce, under his breath, while glancing at Lena, "I'll totally get your back bro. Oh man that looks so good. DUDE. Noms to the noms."

The Ogre-alcohol tolerance comment earns a small chuff of laughter. “Oh, that's good to hear. I've been quite well, myself. The busier season at the Airfield is starting to wind down a bit,” Tock answers Mirabella in kind. Owen's delivery of sweets to Ryan's station earns a smile at first, then a laugh at Kyrie's manner of commenting on it. “He must /really/ like you, Ryan.” Her head tilts slightly. “Didn't Owen give you a brownie at the other Summer barbecue?” she asks the Valkyrie. “I think the trick is to have an absolute overabundance of food.” Speaking of people giving things to other people. “Do you need a beverage or anything, Ryan?” Apparently it's his turn since Kyrie's set.

When the hell did Russ get here? Probably just recently considering he is standing by the door and all. His hands kept behind his back in a militaristic stance. Hiding their blackened nature from direct view. The double breasted coat he wears resembles a commander's long coat but void of any markings of rank. It, like the vest and shirt he wears beneath, have the stains of ash that seem to never wash out completely. A crisp crease to his pants and those boots are spit shined to mirror reflection. His black hair is swept back and to the side, cut in a fashion that hasn't seen much action since about the 40's in Europe. By his side there is a rather large mechanical... rat. Blackened copper with eyes that glow the same hideous orange as the vents along its ribcage that glow and dim like it mimics breathing. The soft click of metal claws sound timed like a heartbeat, perhaps some 'at rest' programming or a flaw in it's design.

"Meaning I will not be foolish enough to get into a drinking contest with her, though I would gladly handle the betting for it." Ali places some of the whipped cream atop a created s'more and takes a small bite, licking the excess chocolate and cream from his lips with a sigh. "I should encourage some patisseries to move into town. Or find some knights de cuisine to do my bidding." He hrms contemplating, then shakes his head as he watches over towards the other fooding factors.

Mirabella nods to Tock. "Sounds like it's starting to be time to relax, which isn't anything to sneeze at," she says, with a smile, before looking to Lena. "And you, my dear, how are you?" she asks. She spots Russ. She doesn't know Russ, but she lifts a hand to him anyway, smiling politely.

Kyrie grins at Tock. "He did, but then, he knows I can beat him up." She notices an unfamiliar face and waves Russ over. "Welcome to Valhalla! Make yourself at home, and get some food before Owen eats it all," she calls, entirely too cheerful for a Summer.

And galavanting in at last is none other than the local selkie, who's in the process of shedding bomber jacket and aviators in favor of the jeans and vintage pin-up girl halter top underneath. A wave of a webbed hand is fluttered in everyone's general direction, and then Olivia's making a beeline for the resident Spring Wizened by the grill.

"I'm doing wonderfully, Mirabella," Lena says, turning her attention away from Owen now that he's gone on to talk to Ryan. "Good food and company is only improving things further. You're looking well yourself. Hello Tock, and hi Kyrie," she offers greetings to other familiar faces nearby. "I really want to eat these ribs, they look delicious, but I think I need to sit down so I'm not trying to hold my plate at the same time. And napkins, because I'm going to have BBQ sauce all over my face for sure."

“At that rate, /everyone/ should bring you food,” Tock replies to Kyrie with a grin of her own, both rows of pearly whites displayed. “A little relaxation is nice from time to time,” she agrees with Mirabella. Russ's entrance does steal her attention for a moment...though it is perhaps more the fellow's companion than the man himself that catches the clockwork girl's eye. She lifts a hand to greet the rapid-incoming Olivia without making any move to slow her progress toward Ryan. "Good evening, Lena," she returns the greeting cheerfully."

Once plates are presented, Ryan starts to heap food onto them for Owen. It looks like it will all fit, barely. Mid-dishing, the Drudge blinks up at the ogre. "Sorry? Digits?" He follows Owen's gaze towards Lena and then back, looking no more informed. He is rescued from this conundrum by Kyrie's remark, for which the Drudge laughs loudly. "Perhaps it's a long term investment? And no, no. Don't trouble yourself. I'll get something to drink later."

Mirabella smiles to Olivia's entrance before looking to Lena. "There's a seat next to me, if you'd like," she offers her fellow Fairest, before sipping from her soda.

Russ gives a nod of his head to those that greet him, "Guten nacht." he greets in his native tongue before he steps in further. Taken to walking with his hands behind his back like it was some surprise inspection and bunks are about to be flipped over and packs rifled through to make sure things are up to code. Though he is grinning faintly but those that bother to watch, well, it appears plastic and put on. It doesn't reach his silvered eyes that look every bit as friendly as a machine would. Probably just wears a fleshy suit is all. "Come, Kopfer." he brings a blackened hand by his side to snap his fingers. The mechanical rat starts to bound along after him, stopping at times. The soft whine of servos and motors clicking as it turns head and ears to keep alert before bounding off again after its creator. Where does the GermaGrump go? Right to the beer, of course.

Late...is a state of mind. Brand is nearly -always- late to events of the sort, sometimes because he's being exclusive, others because his apartment is being molotov cocktailed. In this case, it's because Brand has been off in the distance tuning and preparing a black acoustic guitar for the last fifteen minutes and going over some private text messages. Now he's chosen to arrive holding his guitar carefully by the neck, weaving his way towards Kyrie and the others in an off-gray tee shirt and a simple pair of jeans (because, hey, it's a barbecue). He waves his ringed fingers to Olivia and Mirabella, then gives Owen a salute, the first few he nears in trying to find the Valkyrie.

"K. Seriously. Dude. Get those digits," says Owen to his friend, Ryan, as he takes his two plates of food - quarter rack of ribs with peach bbq, sausage, hotdog, two burgers, two ears of corn, so on. He carries it carefully to a spot where he can sit down and begin to eat around the rest. "So! Ready to hear a joke?" he asks the group as he settles in, “Oh man y'all. Get all over this food. This is good, good stuff," he says. "BRO!' he says to Brand, bropound in passing, filling the hand with a beer before he gets one himself.

"Hi Lena," Kyrie offers with a smile to the woman before Tock makes her laugh. "I don't know about /everyone/." She lifts a hand, waving to Olivia as she arrives, before noticing the rat. Her head tilts as she studies it for a moment, smiling. "Oh good, Brand's here. The bum," she says a moment later, pointing at him, giving him a mock frown.

Olivia will no doubt dispense effusive greetings at some point shortly, but right now, she's on a mission. She skirts around slightly on her approach to Ryan, staying out of his peripheral until she's behind him. Tapping him on one shoulder, she slides to the shoulder opposite, so that when he turns to look, finds no one, and turns to check the other side? KAPOW. Snog. Right on the kisser. All stealth-like, and shite.

Lena slips into the seat next to Mira with a smile, sets her plate down in front of her, and picks up an ear of corn. She looks about ready to dive into it when she hears a few words of German and stops to look up and around. When she spots Russ she smiles his direction and calls over in German that's pretty nearly fluent, though with a bit of an English accent and that entrancing quality to her voice, "don't forget to get a beer, if you can find one that isn't terrible!"

“If you're sure...” Tock replies to Ryan with a look that says she will be checking on him again later, either way. Another wave is offered Brand's way, along with a smile, when Kyrie points out his arrival. “Most of everyone?” she edits for comedic effect at the Valkyrie's demurral. Pale brows lift in tandem to regard Olivia's surprise kissing tactic.

"BRO." Brand laughs as he bumps Owen's knuckles, grinning as he's handed a beer. He still manages to point one finger to Owen and mouth the word BroFest to the man with a waggle of his brows. It. Is. On. "Hello everyone." Brand says aloud, saluting Lena and Tock with his beer. He manages a shoulder-snug to Mirabella, a quick thing, before he presents himself to Kyrie with a sheepish look on his face. "I was just over -there-, Kyrie. I'm here." Brand grins broadly. "Where should I set up shop?"

Mirabella leans into Brand for a moment, and smiles to him, before looking to Lena. Huh. She shrugs and gets back to nibbling, watching for Ryan's reaction to stealth!kiss from Liv.

"Digits," Ryan repeats back to Owen, and though he smiles and nods, he still seems to be at a bit of a loss. "Right. Absolutely." Quickly he turns to see if anyone else wants something off the grill, gaze trailing hopefully over the crowd. "Oh yes, I'm quite all right," he says to Tock, waving her off with a spatula. Then Olivia taps his shoulder, and Ryan looks left, only to find no one there. Of course he then looks right, and receives the Selkie's kiss full on the lips. The Drudge goes very still for a second, then his pale complexion goes scarlet. "What umm ..." is the first thing he manages to say to Olivia, then he laughs nervously. "Hello Olivia. It's nice to see you, too?"

Kyrie shoots a quick grin at Tock before nodding toward Ryan. Maybe it's the digits thing, maybe it's the surprise kiss he got, but either way she seems amused. "Wherever you want that isn't on top of the food or in the fire," she tells Brand, before finding herself a nice lawn chair to settle into.

Russ looks back over his shoulder at hearing German, a brow raising faintly as those silvered eyes give Lena the once over. "Ja." he grunts out in reply. Continuing further in German << I will need to request at least some Warsteiner be present for next time. >>, his voice sounding like he is used to roaring out commands rather than whispering. At least he is using a 'normal' tone, even if it is dry. Makes it hard to pick out the sarcasm or jovial nature he is trying to put out there. Trying to. Failing.

The pop-hiss of a cap coming off of a darker lager he has found before he turns around. Beginning to walk over to the general group. The bottle cap is tossed at his feet. Litter bug! Oh wait, no, Kopfer, that mechanical rat, quickly scoops up the bit of metal and starts to chew into it fiercely. The vents along its sides glow as pieces of the cheap metal are sent to the little forge that must make up its stomach. Not to be rude any further, Russ speaks up in English: "I am Russ Werner, proprietor of Eisen Arms." General greeting for any that wish to hear it. Grunty and grumbly as it may sound. So charming!

"Isn't it?" Liv says sunnily to Ryan, "Will there be fish on the grill tonight?" Her eyes stray toward the collective, a faint twitch of her forehead occurring when she spots Russ before returning her gaze to the Drudge.

<<Or maybe some Weihenstephaner,>> Lena answers to Russ with an approving laugh. In German still, because why not. She seems to be pretty comfortable speaking the language. "Nice to meet you, Russ. I'm Magdalena Engel, but I prefer everyone just call me Lena. Tell me about Eisen Arms." She grins at Mira, seated next to her, wiggles her fingers at Brand, and then starts devouring her corn on the cob. Well, it's not going to be on the cob long. Damned Fairest, though. Somehow she manages to make chomping corn off the cob look elegant. It probably shouldn't be possible.

"Heya Russ! Ooh, arms, you make weapons? Hedge or regular?" asks Owen as he waves from where he's systematically destroying his food. He's still giving Lena long looks though in between bites. In between bites, polite, he will point at Brand and call, "Bro, this year I'm giving you the ampicillin shot BEFORE the party."

“Right,” Tock answers Ryan simply, not pressing anything further given the greeting he has to handle on top of the ongoing slang to process. She perches herself on the edge of a chair near to Kyrie's, adjusting the plate in her hand to avoid losing any of her fruit. Again, that little machine-creature catches her eye, her head tilting just a few degrees off centre as she watches it.

"Welcome Russ. I'm Kyrie," is offered to the man. But she lets other people make their own introductions. Then she grins at Owen, calling out teasingly, "Oi, aren't my weapons good enough for you now?" She still hasn't gotten anything to eat or drink, but she seems content nonetheless.

"Well how about I sit next to you, then, Kyrie?" Brand grins and moves over to a lawn chair. Setting his bottle into the grass, Brand smirks and glances over to the fire. "Though if I -could- perform on fire, like that guy from Rammstein, it would be impressive as all hell. Arrright, let's do this." White hair flowing, Brand settles in with his acoustic and double-checks the tuning one last time before he begins to strum, slowly. It's a cover, since his acoustic vocabulary only goes so far. With a small smile and a grin to Lena, he lifts his brows and begins to play an acoustic version of 'Times Like These' by the Foo.

"I'm a one way motorway, I'm a road that drives away, follows you back home," mutters Owen, half singing in between bites of his burger - his team has made strategic inroads in their area of operation (eating his food.)

“Talk to Eleri about that one,” Tock suggests to Brand with a grin at the mention of performing while on fire. Kyrie's greeting to Russ does shift the clockwork girl's gaze from the machine to its creator. “Hello, Russ. I don't believe we have met, either. Please, call me Tock. Everyone does anymore.” She quiets as Brand starts to play.

Olivia's ears almost visibly perk, and she turns toward Brand from her spot near Ryan, beaming like she's lit up. She blows a kiss with both hands in Brand's direction.

Lena slows down on devouring her food when Brand starts to play, and spends more of her time listening and watching him. She grins back at him, but once he starts to play she gives him a brief sad, almost longing smile and returns to her eating. More sedately now, but still, her attention is divided between the two activities.

"Fine by me," Kyrie tells Brand, smiling. She starts to say something else to Russ but then Brand starts playing. And since it's the first time she's heard him play, she gives him her focus, head tilting. Her lips curve slowly, clearly enjoying the music.

Ryan mutters something to Olivia, though those nearby could certainly overhear. "That goes both ways, you know." There is a hurried glance about, as if to check how many people were paying attention to the Selkie's ninja-kiss greeting, and Tock receives a quick, grateful smile for her acceptance. Then the Drudge blinks at Olivia's question and turns to give her a worried and apologetic look. "Uhhh, sorry. I don't have any fish on hand." But he rushes to add, "I'll check in the kitchen the next chance I get? I'm sure we can find something edible. Sorry." And he's greatly relieved to find Olivia distracted as Brand starts up his set. Maybe he'll be saved by the music.

Olivia glances askance at Ryan, her smile sly. "I'm not worried." she says, adding easily, "I can eat steak and be quite happy, I promise. No need to go out of your way." There'll be a gentle pat to his arm if Ryan allows it, and this time she is making the motion tentative to give him the opportunity to keep her at bay.

There's a reason Brand is looking for Olivia when he starts to play; he knows the song is a favorite of his motleymate. When she blows the kiss towards him, he waits until a break in his singing to blow an air-kiss back to her in return. Brand continues to play, singing with the music and giving effectively a musical background for the barbecue-goers. His eyes lower to the fretboard and his long, white hair somehow manages to stay out of the strings as he soulfully delivers the popular song to his friends.

"That's my bro," tells Owen to folks around him as he finishes his plate number two, dabbing his mouth and finishing his beer.

"I hadn't heard him play before," Kyrie murmurs to Tock. "He's really good, though," she adds without looking away from the musician. Until Owen speaks and she grins over at him. "Good thing I think of him like a brother too, then," she calls.

Tock's attention is largely drawn to Brand's performance, though she does spare a moment now and then to nibble at the fruit from her plate. When she speaks, it is reflexively hushed so as not to interrupt the performance in any way. “Really? How have you managed not to?” She is mildly surprised by the revelation from Kyrie. “So much the better for the novelty, then.”

Ryan doesn't make any move to avoid the pat on his arm, but he doesn't look much relieved. Perhaps it's that he has to give Olivia more bad news, as he leans in to speak to her while Brand is playing. "Ribs?" Apparently there isn't steak. "Or beef or turkey burgers, beef hot dogs, kielbasas, or corn on the cob?" Then he directs the Selkie's gaze towards the sides on the nearby table. "Beans, pasta salad, potato salad, fruit and cream?" He smiles apologetically and gives Olivia a hopeful look.

Space. That is where Russ went. Staring off into space. Eyes twitching from time to time, squinting like he is lost in his own mind or reliving something. A blink, a faint jerk of his head and he puts on that plastic smile again, half hidden behind his bottle of beer. "My apologies." he says to those around him that just got to see the GermaGrump kind of go wooden. "I make Hedgeweapons and Armor. I have recently finished a prototype design on my power armor with mobility assistance and full coverage protection, I intend to put targeting systems that will link up to zee rifles and bullpups. Like my ER Sturmwerfer. So far the testing has been acceptable in ranged combat applications but I have yet to find something that will prove a challenge to it." he pauses, sips his beer. "Most things blast apart into a red mist," he mumbles as his free hand, blackened and permanently stained, digs through his pocket to produce rusted washers and bent bolts that he tosses a few on the ground. That mechanical rat picks up it's treats to start munching on those while Russ takes a proper seat. Looking over to the music, sipping at his beer.

As the first song comes to an end, Brand laughs softly. There's no microphone, it's just Brand with a guitar. A little bashful, he gives a sidelong grin to Kyrie and clears his throat. "It's alright to talk around me guys, I just wanted to play some songs for the people I love and give you guys something better than a boom box with Salt-N-Pepa playing." Leaning forward, Brand takes up his beer and holds it in the air. "To Summer!" He calls out, then takes a swig. The bottle is set down again, and he begins to play his acoustic version of 'Simple Man' by Skynyrd.

Olivia is not disappointed, she /swears/. "Ribs." she requests, with an easy, "Thank you. I'll serve myself, no need to go out of your way. Unless you want to." Because life is so unnerving for a servant who's not serving, right? It's hard to tell what would make Ryan happy, though of course, she has the means to find out if she wanted to be invasive. Which she doesn't. And there's a distraction in the form of Russ, who once again she stares at, a mite suspiciously.

"You hadn't played for me before. I can be quiet and listen if I want to," Kyrie says, lightly kicking at Brand's foot with a grin. But then he's singing again and she blinks, looking a little more into the music this time than the first song, though there's no question she enjoyed it as well.

Owen cheers at the song, finishing his beer. He grabs another two beers, opening them, and makes two s'mores, carrying them over by the singer and putting the beer within reach as a refill before he moves to take a seat again. His head nods, fist in the air now and then.

Lena finishes off her corn on the cob and picks up a rib, which she starts eating without much worry about getting either her fingers or her face saucy. When Brand finishes a song and calls to them she says, "much better than a boom box!" Then she holds up a rib, since she doesn't have a drink at the moment, and says, "to summer!" Toasting using body parts from once-living things is very Summer, right? Maybe not. She watches Brand play for a few moments, then sighs softly and returns to eating.

Tock smiles at Brand's assurance that talking is okay during his performance. A slight dip of her brows betrays confusion at the Salt-N-Pepa reference, but she assumes it has something to do with music and doesn't say anything about spices after having had that whole lead zeppelins conversation not too long ago. She rests her plate in her lap for a moment to applaud at Brand's cheer, then lifts her glass of cider in a small salute.

Ryan sets his spatula down just long enough to clap briefly as Brand ends his first song, flashing the minstrel an appreciative grin. Then the Drudge looks to Olivia. "Ribs. Absolutely! No trouble at all." In fact Ryan seems quite happy to finally be able to serve up something she wants, and a rack of baby back ribs go onto the grill, to be liberally brushed with a peach BBQ sauce. Then he follows the Selkie's gaze towards Russ, and Ryan studies his fellow Wizened for a second before offering a friendly dip of his head.

"Thank you guys, all my love." Brand smiles to their faces before he begins to sing. Simple Man is less chords and more finger picking, switching from three main chords with a guitar pick darting over the strings. There's a low, southern feel to the song as Brand starts singin' about things his 'mama said'. He glances up from his music as he sings, drawling out the lyrics without an inch of shyness to him. Though, since Kyrie's never seen him play before, his lip curls into the lyric just a little bit. He turns a little towards her, smoke drifting from his eyes. "n' be a Simple Kind of man..." He holds the note, growling into it a bit. "An' be something you love an' understand..."

'Bro that's my sis," says Owen in a warning tone to Brand, but there's amusement there as he glances at him and then at Kyrie, "I call that level 3 panty dropping gaze," he tells her as eyes his plate, and the pile of debris left behind. Does he want more food? he seems to be pondering.

Kyrie smiles absently as she listens to the song, murmuring to Tock, "I have /got/ to listen to more music from this time." Then she catches Owen's comment and grins over at him. "He's like a brother to me, too. So no, uh, panty dropping. Why would anyone drop their panties from a look anyway?" Oh yeah. Old school girl is clueless.

Olivia snorts. "And your sister's perfectly capable of making up her own mind, Owen." she calls out before biting down on a rib, leaving some on her mouth like lipstick. Then to Kyrie, "Because some looks are so smouldering you just want your panties to drop?" she suggests. "We could have a smouldering contest, but Brand would just win."

Russ raises his half finished beer faintly with a dip of his head at the toast to Summer. Still his mind lingers a million miles away or, perhaps, just not one to have outward displays of any true emotion. Well, beyond that sort of hateful stare he seems to culminate. Resting asshole face, it's common in Summer and all. Not one to snag any food, the Wizened seems to be on a liquid diet. Catching Ryan's nod, it is returned with a soft salute with is beer bottle to him. "What is the purpose of making panties drop? Is the woman incapable of removing them herself? What if she is wearing a garter belt? Is there a separate stare for that? Is this some Goblin Contract one can purchase at the Mar-Ket?" he grunts. "I would much rather see a woman undress than have her potentially embarrassed in public." he muses, shrugging a shoulder. "Unless that was her kink." he sips his beer.

“I've been told much the same thing. Thorian has been trying to teach me, but it's quite a daunting amount to catch up on and not something to which I'd directed a great deal of time or effort thus far,” Tock admits to Kyrie just a touch sheepishly. There might have been things like /computers/ distracting her in the meantime. Her free hand reaches up to cover the bottom half of her face with small-delicate fingers at the direction the conversation has taken, only a hint of an amused curl to her lips visible from between them.

Brand has to bite his lip as he listens to the others talk, which destroys is ability to make fuckMe(tm) eyes for a few seconds. Must. Focus. On. Song. He warbles just a little bit into the next vocal pattern, but after a second of finding his voice, he holds out and finishes the song with a slow strum that lets the final chord ring out over the small crowd. Then? Brand snorts and covers his lips with the back of his hand. "God DAMN you guys..." Brand laughs, eyes filled with stars as he takes up his beer again. He tips the bottle back, his throat bobbing as he swallows, then lowers the beer to the grass. "Alright I've got one more song I wanna play and then I'm gonna take some requests and -hope- I know the song. I'm all up for a smouldering contest though, if anyone wants a sample of that." Brand strums his guitar slowly. "Is there anyone sad tonight who wants to feel beautiful?"

Kyrie frowns a little as she processes Olivia's answer, slowly nodding. After a moment she shrugs. "Just one of those things I'll adjust to, I suppose." She looks at Brand then, leaning over to murmur quietly to him.

Brand leans his ear to Kyrie and whatever she whispers. He glances to the blonde Valkyrie, then slowly nods his head, agreeing with her.

There is a studied lack of comment from Ryan on the subject of pantry-dropping, though at one point there is a brief laugh when he hears something Tock says. Russ' salute causes the Drudge to give the other Wizened a questioning look and a gesture towards the grill, and then the nearby table of sides. "Something to eat?"

"Who's to say that smouldering is an arena in which men can compete?" Liv can't help herself, she calls out in challenge to Russ, but it seems more rhetorical than anything. "Thanks, Ryan." she says with a fond smile, and seems inclined to leave the poor Wizened be for now as she drifts over to Kyrie and Brand.

"Men do not wear panties." Russ retorts back to Liv. Pausing, then looking confused for a moment and needing to think. The unasked question of 'do they -now- wear panties?'. A shake of his head, clearing the thought with a frown. Suckling back the last of his beer. "No. Danke." he returns to Ryan polite enough before he stands from where he sat to make way to snag himself another beer. The mechanical rat that had set motionless next to him springs into life to jump on the freshly vacated seat, metal tail whipping about lightly.

And into Valhalla strides a Fancy who immediately kind of stops, like she's not entirely sure if she should commit or turn before anyone notices her and tip-toe back from whence she came. A pause. A few thoughts likely go pinballing around in her head behind her absolutely placid expression and then she breezes on in. Party is go. Of course, she doesn't go straight at anyone or any group in particular. It's a prudent heading she takes that loops her out towards the back and side where she might be noticed if someone happens to turn their head and then she'll probably give them a minor jolt scare - cause, what the hell - there she'll be.

Something flashes in Brand's mind, causing a waft of hissing incense smoke to drift up from his swirling, red eyes. His mien in full flush, he reaches out to squeeze Kyrie's shoulder before reaching down for his beer. He takes another sip and leaves the bottle with the blonde as he rises, shouldering the strap of his guitar. Strumming out a chord, he reaches deep into his 'Smouldering Acoustic Music' playbook, flipping to the secret weapon of mortal and lyrical sensitivity: Aaron Lewis. He begins to play, turning to point his shoulder towards the approaching Olivia and press a kiss to her cheek. Eyes smouldering LITERALLY, he lowers his eyes to Tock, giving her a gentle, pleading look as he begins to sing, as if he's singing directly to her.

"Just please let's not have the guys dropping panties tonight," Kyrie says, though she sounds more amused than concerned. She glances over to Brand, then Brand and Tock, grinning and opening up the bottle of vodka. Because, clearly, she cannot drink 50 year old scotch straight from the bottle like a heathen. But that's what she plans on doing for the vodka.

Okay, there is no hiding that curl of amusement anymore. Tock doesn't bother, letting her hand drop and tilting her head a little with a small raise of shoulders at Russ's comment. People do an awful lot of different and interesting things, 'now' or otherwise, after all. She applauds and chuckles, a hint of music box-like metallic tinkling buried in the sound, as Brand finishes his previous song. “I think everyone gets a fair chance at those competitions, Liv,” she raises her glass the Selkie's way in agreement. Ah, but then Brand is playing again. The cheek-kiss to Olivia earns a smile, the more direct notice tracking her attention further from the bits of conversation and more to the performance.

Olivia lets out a little titter at Brand giving her a smooch, and then watching Brand make eyes at Tock, seems to rather enjoy his efforts toward the clockwork lady. She does aside absently to Russ, "Some men do in fact wear panties. That said, if you consider them a general term applied to underwear, though admittedly, getting men to drop trou is a fair bit easier."

Identifying Melissa is both difficult and easy: it's the mask, either way. Her mask of office at a party is not unusual, although it's somewhat more so at an event she's not assisting with. It's possible that she's looking to hide behind the buglike wax mask whose crimson visage is running more and more with ashy streaks and hints of orange all the time, like a ill-colored bee, indeed. The unblinking eyes blink even less behind that particular fashion choice. Equally strange might be her choice of escort: Dora, much taller, in getup already exercised at a different, sparklier affair. They are, as the saying goes, fashionably late.

Lena has stopped eating by now, most of her food finished, and is sitting and watching Brand play. When his eyes start to smolder her eyes arch a bit and one corner of her lips curls into a smile, obviously entertained by the change in his appearance, but as he goes on through the song the amusement fades away to an introspective look. By the time he finishes the song she's wiped her fingers and face off with her napkin again and stood up, and once on her feet she makes her way quietly over to Kyrie, who she leans over to speak quietly too. Quiet, because she doesn't want to distract everyone from the actual performer with her (sometimes annoyingly) distracting voice. "Thank you for the party, it's been fun, but it's time for me to go," she says softly.

Brand focuses his eyes on Tock and her clockwork way. While he plays, he slowly walks towards her, boots crunching in the grass. He bites his lip just a little, brow titching as he pleads the first words of the song. "I know I've been mistaken...just give me a break and see the changes that I've made." There's a squeak as his rings slide over the coiled strings. He breathes in, wetting his lips as he comes to a stop before Tock. "I've got some imperfections...but how can you collect them and throw them in my face?" Brand's head turns as he lowers to one knee. "Cuz you always find a way...to keep me right here waitin..." By the look in his eyes, performance or real, he slips the bittersweet sadness into the song, eyes smouldering to the clockwork lady. "You always find the words to say...to keep me right here waitin'...an' if you chose to walk away? I'd still be right here waitin..."

Grunting. Russ grunts from where he is at getting his beer. Another shake of his beer. He remains quiet but apparently the militaristic Wizened just doesn't get the appeal. "This song reminds me of one I know... a newer one." he says with that plastic grin still on his face. Turning to go and reclaim his seat, waving his hand in that 'shoo' fashion to the mechanical rodent that leaps down, eyes glowing up at it's creator balefully before it settles like a cat to curl up near his feet. "I believe they are called Coheed and Cambria. This one song called the Dark Side of Me?" he mutters to himself. "An old Winter friend of mine introduced me to it.".

Kyrie glances over at new arrivals, head tilting slightly, but she lifts a hand to welcome Melissa and Dora. She looks up to Lena, smiling. "I'm glad you could come. Be safe," she murmurs to the woman before grinning at singer and singee. She seems delighted, really.

Someone apparently decided that summer deserved a properly...colorful sendoff. That, or she ate the wrong cupcake at her sister's party and has events terribly, terribly confused. But given Dora's arrival at Melissa's side, it seems the former is the more likely truth. Covered in sequins and glitter (when she's covered at all), she puts two fingers between her lips and blows a sharp wolf-whistle. "Sing it, Brand!" There's only one thing missing -- and she fixes that a beat later too, pulling a lighter from out of nowhere and flicking it up, holding it high over her head. "So where should we grace with our presence first?" she asks much more sedately, directed at the masked figure next to her.

Lena's voice is attention-grabbing enough for Tock to note her leaving, despite Brand's singing, and gets her a small wave of farewell. That being done, once the siren-voiced lady is finished speaking, there's a singing Brand /right/ there and all. For all the sad tones the singer finds, she returns only a smile, the corner of her lips ticked upward slightly higher on one side. Performance being a not entirely unfamiliar thing, the clockwork girl plays right along with a splay-fingered hand fanning at the level of her collarbones, for lack of a real fan to employ.

"Hostess, probably. Should greet everyone right, right?" If not for the (pretty? creepy? Pretty creepy?) insect-like mask, Mel would look like she got an entirely different dress memo from Dora, despite the pair of them arriving quite obviously together. As they arrived not long after Fancy, she quips to the less-familiar face who's just stopped inside, "You can go all the way in. It's the only way to get s'mores and attention. Both good things -- well, to some people."

"It was fun, and I'm glad I could make it," Lena says quietly to Kyrie. She waves back to Tock, offers a smile along with the wave, and then starts taking a couple of steps toward the door. She does give a wide smile to Brand on her way out, pausing long enough to lift both hands in the horns, and she silently mouths, 'rock on'. Then she slips out.

The debate of music and underpants aside, Liv has ribs to tuck into, so she opts to find a seat nearby her motley-mate currently charming those around him. If she's off-put by the mess she's making of her face with barbecue sauce, she doesn't show it. Instead, she offers a sticky wave to Dora and Melissa from her chosen spot.

The debate of music and underpants aside, Liv has ribs to tuck into, so she opts to find a seat nearby her motley-mate currently charming those around him. If she's offput by the mess she's making of her face with barbecue sauce, she doesn't show it. Instead, she offers a sticky wave to Dora and Melissa from her chosen spot.

Brand's song comes to an end, and hooded under the waves of his long, white hair, he gives Tock an appreciative wink. He uses the arm of her chair for balance as he rises, waving to offer the 'horns' in return to Lena as she's leaving. People coming and going, talk of underpants and FIRE, Brand carefully tucks the neck of his guitar upwards to avoid bashing anyone in the arm as he turns to look to Dora and Melissa. "Dora! Melissa!" Brand whistles, lips parting into a wide smile to see that -- despite the fire in her hand -- he hasn't burned down the Dora bridge. "Alright, I'm gonna s'more and beer-myself for a second, but since it's the end of fucking SUMMER I've got a song just for you Summer folks. Sadly--" Brand looks to Russ. "I don't know Coheed and Cambria, that guy's voice is WAAAAY higher than mine, but I think you'll like it."

New people arrive and Russ just sits where he has sat, drinking his beer. Only a cursory glance given to Dora and Melissa, that once over with Melissa bearing the brunt of his attention out of recognition. Turning back to watch Brand play music in silence this time. That mechanical rat the size of a small housecat perks up and takes the chance to jump into Russ' lap that causes him to grunt and sneer for the sudden weight. "Shize." he hisses under his breath but oddly starts petting the machine, scritching behind ears against small servos and motors with his blackened hands. "Was observation. Perhaps you learn." he offers in that grunting tone his voice tends to have.

Don't panic, Fancy. Nod. That's what normal people do. She nods. Then actually turns around to look at Melissa and nod again so that she can, y'know, see the nod this time. "Thank you." She blurts, her black marble eyes settling on Melissa and Dora as she does. "Bananas." Is what she says next, as if it makes perfect sense in that context, which it doesn't. She doesn't have bananas and the other two Lost aren't bananas themselves, so... she smiles faintly and points towards the other people and whispers something about 'going before them'.

"If we're doing it right, probably so," Dora agrees with Melissa, her smile almost sharp-edged, as if trying to make up for the utter lack of expression her companion's afforded behind her mask. She looks Fancy over with open curiosity, then laughs quickly. "Stick with the s'mores, I say." As Brand shouts back, she palms the lighter and flashes the man a thumb's up instead before finally lowering her hand. Olivia gets a quick grin and a wiggle of her fingers just before she turns back to Melissa, offering an arm in a show of formality entirely divorced from her attire. "Shall we?"

Tock gives Brand a brighter smile and a small nod of her head as he finishes the song, again leaving her plate on her lap for a smattering of applause. “Thank you, that was lovely.” She offers a hand to help him up, but he's got the chair arm doing that task smartly. At the singer calling out Dora's and Melissa's names, she turns to regard the new arrivals (a bit belatedly), waving greetings to them both. Dora's spectacular sparkliness earns yet another grin.

"You're welcome, Tock, that one was for you." Brand smiles down to the clockwork woman as he collects himself. Some songs take the energy right out of the man, and he's bled enough Glamour into his performance that he's going to need his energy reserves returned to him. With a bend of his back and a wiggle of his fingers, he looks to Kyrie. "Sticky fingers, just save a load of one for me, okay?" Brand slips over closer to Olivia, and he leans down to whisper something to her before he offers an arm out to Dora and Melissa for the guitar-safe one-armed hug.

While most of the attention is on Brand's performance, Ryan is busy grilling up more food over by the garden, though he seems to be keeping a curious eye on the crowd around the Minstrel. New arrivals are given a greeting -- a sort of questioning smile for Fancy, whom he does not know, and a brighter one for Melissa and Dora, accompanied by a vigorous wave of his steel spatula.

"Pleasure to meet you, Miss Bananas." It's very difficult to tell if Melissa is pulling Fancy's leg with that little greeting. "Melissa Wheeler. If you want a life preserver before jumping into the party, I have a second arm." The first, of course, is slipped through Dora's arm, as Dora is much, much taller than she is. "We were going to say thanks to Kyrie for hosting an affair before Summer's end." The swivel of Mel's head doesn't entirely give away who at the party she's looking at, nor does the singular lift of her hand in a very general greeting, although Brand's approach certainly earns him a moment's affection in greeting, a brief hug back.

"Dora Skinner," the taller, currently-pink-haired woman offered in Fancy's direction as well, just before Melissa takes her arm. But that means she's still got one free to return Brand's half-hug, laughing as she does. "Hey, sorry about the other day," she offers the musician with a wry twist at the corner of her mouth. "Buttons were already raw, totally not you, y'know?" That said, she's poised to lead Melissa on toward the hostess whenever she seems ready to be on the move again, eyes alert behind her cracked butterfly glasses.

Whatever Brand whispers to her, Olivia just lets out a little laugh, and kisses Brand on the cheek - which happens to smear it with some barbecue sauce in her wake. She gives his wrist a tug, seeming to insist that he sit, and yet the whole affectionate exchange seems to lack anything of the proprietary.

Given that Kyrie has waved her thataway and everything, Fancy slowly pivots towards her. She doesn't immediately run, nor even walk towards her. She does however lift a hand to wave uncertainly and smiles with an equal amount of oh-my-god-what-am-I-even-doing. A breath. That helps. Looking back to Melissa and Dora, obviously thankful for the life preservers they've tossed to keep her from sinking and drowning in a sea of social awkwardness. "Thank you." She says again, like maybe her grasp of English is just a touch shaky. Confidence is growing, however. "I'm Fancy." Which is a step up from banana. "I brought things..." Like, maybe even bananas. Regardless, she'll follow Melissa and Dora now. They might have to pry her off later.

The German wallflower that is Russ continues to show some affection for that motorized pet of his. Though any that watch him can see his fingers are seeking out bolts and nuts to tighten with his fingers. Testing smaller gears and motors as the 'rat' remains still under his machinations. A swig of beer from time to time and the plastic grin on his face seems to have expired as he returns to his generally dour appearance.

"Oh, Fancy is a much better name. I couldn't understand sticking with a better name more. There's a reason I go by Melissa," Mel bubbles. The mask gives even her lightweight socializing a little gravitas. Maybe that's why she wears it. "I want to sample Ryan's food, too. Let's say hello." But it's Kyrie's lawn chair she approaches first. "This is quieter than I expected. But it's a weeknight. It's very nice. I didn't bring extras, as there was no sign it's potluck, but Mark wouldn't let me bring nothing, either. There's a cooler I can run get from my car if anyone gets desperate to try his deviled eggs." However aimed at Kyrie as explanation, some of her attention might wander just a little, the hint of it in antenna-curls sneaking out and the very vagueness of her face.

Kyrie looks up when Melissa approaches her, and she smiles. "Hi Melissa. Dora. Woman I haven't met yet. I'm Kyrie," she offers to Fancy. "I think we're good on food, since Ryan's been cooking like a madman. Somehow he even outlasted Owen, and you know how much of a pig he is when food is around."

"It's all water under the bridge, Dora, you know you're aces in my book." Brand grins a sauce-smeared cheek to the short-haired woman, adding a little shake of his head for good measure. He brushes his hand over his cheek, then through his hair, oblivious to the barbecue sauce he's added to the white locks as he turns and sits with a grunt. Careful with the guitar, he takes up his beer, whispers to Olivia, then turns to Kyrie. "A load of s'more. You know, the crackers, the chocolate? I'm totally going to need some sugar when I'm done, but I can't eat really just yet." Brand motions to his guitar as he begins to strum a few chords, minutes from another song.

Sitting next to Kyrie as she is, Tock also gives a smile and nod of greeting to those who stopped over to say hello. Her attention falls on Fancy, in particular, as someone she doesn't know. “Hello. I don't believe we've met. I'm Tock,” she adds herself to the introductions. “There is an abundance of lovely food,” is an agreement with Kyrie's statement. “I'll have to remember to compliment Ryan on it before the end of the night. He has been working hard."

"Can I have s'mores and deviled eggs?" Olivia calls out wistfully. "I don't see any reason why it's a binary situation. Hello," she adds, fluttering a webbed hand in Fancy's direction. "I'm Olivia." She gives Brand a little elbowing. "Say hello, Brand."

Dora makes with the introductions then, with the bright smile standing out even more starkly thanks to her choice of lipstick. "Kyrie, this is Fancy. Fancy, Kyrie, proprietress of the hallowed halls of bloody combat and adventure you find yourself standing in, and hostess for the evening. And Tock, who just took care of all the proper forms herself." She flashes Tock a grin, then breathes in deeply then, and lets her own attention wander in Ryan's direction, wetting her lips as she does. "Definitely smells delicious, that's for sure."

"I'll make sure to save you at least one," Kyrie promises Brand with a grin. She laughs and calls out to Olivia, "If Melissa will bring the eggs in, you can certainly have both. But this isn't /just/ a place of combat and adventure. There's a garden! And a parlor," she points out to Dora, though with a grin. "Ryan /has/ done a lot of good work. I told him to have fun, too, but he seems to just want to cook."

Brand, elbowed, looks to Olivia then over to Fancy. Caught up too much in himself for the moment, he realizes that proper introductions are in order. While he may be entertaining -- at times -- Brand is a Fairest that is thoroughly guilty of getting caught up in the social atmosphere. With a smile as sweet as can be, he offers a hand out to Fancy. "Pleased to meet you," Brand dips his head a shade. "My name is Brand Walker."

"There is plenty of food," Ryan calls when he hears this topic come up. Just in case this was in any doubt. "Backyard barbeque fare for the most part." The three newcomers are all included in a beckoning wave towards the grill, and the nearby table full of side dishes. Then the Drudge flashes a smile towards Tock and Kyrie, hastily waving off any notion that he is working, hard or otherwise. "I like cooking? And feeding people. It's fun."

Fancy side-eyes Brand a lot before he's prodded to say hello, not in a mean dagger-from-the-eyeballs way, more curious on the sly. She doesn't say anything to him. Not a peep. "I'm Fancy. I work at Fishdream store... for Ray hyeongnim." She announces like it's her first day of school and she's just been introduced by her teacher to a room full of strange faces. Then, despite there being talk of lots of food, she takes a large plastic tupperware out of her bag and holds it out to Kyrie, head bowed. "Thank you, Summer!" If one had to guess, and the plastic is mostly transparent, it's fish. She brought a fish. A cooked one.

Sniff sniff. The selkie suddenly sits up straight, like a dog, not a seal, who's caught a scent. "Fish?" she asks, her head tilting this way and that. "Did you bring fish?" Olivia asks of Fancy, her shiny dark eyes suddenly growing a tad bigger.

“Nice to meet you, Fancy.” Tock returns Dora's grin in kind. “You are looking fantastically sparkly,” she says of Dora's outfit with a tone of clear compliment. “There is also a spectacular medical clinic,” is tacked onto Kyrie's list of finds at Valhalla. That container of fish widens her grin. “Olivia's going to like you, I do believe.” The clockwork girl looks over to Ryan as he speaks again, still all smiles. “Oh, it is more than okay to /enjoy/ your work and even have fun at it. I just wanted to acknowledge both the work and how well you do it.”

Kyrie's lips twitch as Olivia smells fish, despite the container. "You're very welcome, Fancy. And the fish is very welcome, as you may have heard," she says, head tilting toward the selkie. "Ryan, you mind if Melissa brings in some deviled eggs from Mark?" she calls to the man.

Dora smiles brightly at Tock, even as she starts to lead Melissa over toward Ryan. "Really, I thought summer deserved a proper blow-out if we were going to do it -- and this is almost as good as sparklers, don't you think?" Then they're off to the man manning the food, and she looks things over before giving him a warm grin. "She's said much the same to me, actually. Though that could be because I keep feeding her lately, and then she comes home and finds there are leftovers."

Brand doesn't seem to notice the side-eyeing of Fancy to his own person, he's so busy trying to get a look at everyone's faces and provide a decent introduction of himself to Fancy. With a smirk, he tucks a lock of hair behind one pointed ear, and at the same time his eyes release a waft of myrrh-scented incense, a leftover from his mantle. "Would you like to hear a song? Another?" Brand asks to Fancy, and then turns his attention to Kyrie as he plays a few notes. "It's the end of Summer and I'm going to put this track onto the next album, but there's something very end-of-Summer about it I thought that you'd appreciate." Clearing his throat, Brand begins to play...

Fancy pulls the lid off and smoothly slides it under the container, revealing the whole spread which includes the fish, but also rice and kimchi. It smells gooood. "Nice to meet everyone." She says, trying on a smile that fits, more or less as the hard edges of her shyness start to round off a little. But, there was a question from a certain Selkie. Nodnodnod. It's fish! She holds it out towards her while her head slowly pivots back so she can watch Brand too. Song? Yes. Bananas.

Kyrie grins at Brand. "I'm just appreciative that you're playing for us. And Fancy, thanks for bringing the fish. Our selkie is particular and biased toward fish," she says, getting up to finally make herself a s'more. No, two, it looks, but she seems to be getting a kick out of roasting the marshmallows.

Ryan laughs off any need for his approval. "Mark's deviled eggs? I'm sure they're fantastic. Who would say no to that?" Tock's compliments are answered with a somewhat embarrassed look, and followed by a quick nod and smile of thanks. Then he nods vigorously to Melissa's mention of a visit. "You do," he agrees, head tilting at a questioning angle for mention of 'heavy things.' He shakes his head. "I'm sure you're as busy as ever. Feel free to drop by whenever you have the time? Bring your new person if you like? I promise to behave." Dora's addition gives Ryan a moment's pause, but he seems to puzzle it out after a second. "Oh!" Ryan laughs it off, if a tad uneasily. "Yes, because I always cook, and ... yes. Well, Eleri can certainly make up her own mind about that." And despite the earlier bit of discomfort, he now grins at Dora. "And of course you're welcome to come over anytime, too." Catching sight of Fancy's offering, and Olivia's interest in it, the Drudge looks greatly relieved and flashes spindly woman with the fish a grateful look.

“Like fireworks in miniature,” Tock agrees with Dora's assessment of her garments. She gives Ryan one last smile before easing up on the compliments, since they always make him seem a little blushy and perhaps a touch uncomfortable “Speaking of having fun with your work and doing it well...” the Manikin says with a grin at Brand as he mentions playing another song.

Melissa seems to present Dora to stick near Ryan. "I'll go get some. I wasn't necessarily going to stay long, but enough to share the goodies. I'll try and lean on the others to get together with you and yours soon, Ryan. I did want to make sure you weren't forgotten." It seems that allowance is enough to send her back to the exit for her extras.

Olivia looks slightly torn. Here's Brand. There's fish. Here's Brand. There's fish. Liv finishes sucking the meat off one of her ribs, gives Brand a sorry-not-sorry expression, and heads over to Fancy, offering a beaming smile. "I love seafood. I eat some every single day."

Kyrie starts munching on one of the s'mores, but takes the other over to Brand. She can't have the entertainment not get a s'more, after all, though she does wait until he's done singing.

Kyrie's departure for s'mores reminds Tock that she's supposed to be trying that thing! She slips away for a moment to put two together (she watched a video online to ensure this was done properly...new foods are serious business) to refill her emptied fruit plate. She also makes a point of finding a few napkins to carry back to her seat, perching there and looking down at her creations. “So, what do you think, Kyrie?” she asks before trying one.

The song ends, and though it ends a little growly, it's the last song Brand intends to play for a while. Plucking the guitar pick in between the strings, he lifts the instrument off of his shoulders and leaves it resting against his booted foot. Now he's just a strange, alabaster-skinned partygoer, reaching hungrily for the s'more being passed to him from Kyrie. "Thanks, dear, thank you. Livia? Did you get some of the--" Brand turns to look to Olivia, then blinks. Smores? Fish. Smores. Fish. They're the polar opposite of flavors, and his he defensively pulls closer to his chest. "Thank you for letting me play for you guys for a bit, and thanks for being a good sport, Tock."

"You should visit Ray's Fishdream store!" Fancy enthuses, like it's the most coolest place in the entire world and possibly most fantasy worlds. Like better than Candyland even. Then, quietly, for Olivia's ears only, "Maybe I get you a discount." Her slow nod suggests that she has the authority to subvert Ray's capitalistic imperative and flaunt the natural order like that, almost at will or something. Maybe. Either way, she's got fish now and it's being freely offered and stuck practically under Olivia's nose. It's just lying there all delicious and smelly, and barely payed attention to as the little Wizened's attention drifts towards Brand and his singing again, straying back only when he's done. Loud whisper: "He's really cool."

It's pretty good," Kyrie decides, smiling and taking another bite. She grins at Brand, shaking her head. "You /can/ have another, you know. And some fish if you can convince her to share with you. Which I can't promise you can, persuasive though you may be." She glances to Fancy, then back to Brand, saying quietly, "I think you've got a new fan."

“No thanks needed. /I/ got a song,” Tock replies to Brand with a pleased grin. She picks up one of her s'mores, pinching the graham cracker sandwich with a napkin in attempt to prevent excess stickiness and sampling the much-lauded dessert in tiny bites.

Somewhere there are chopstick or forks or something, and dammit, Olivia magically finds them. And within moments she is sinking her utensil into the fish and chowing down, a look of sheer bliss crossing her face. "I'd be happy to." she finally manages to Fancy. "I often catch my own, but it would be nice to stop by a store where I can trust the catch is good when I don't have time for a swim." She makes an oh-my-god face to Brand of fish-laden ecstasy before resuming chowing down.

Brand looks to Kyrie, giving the Valkryie a sidelong wink as he pretends he didn't hear what Fancy just whispered. Hunched over a little, the pendant around the rocker's neck sways as he takes a bite into the gooey s'more; his teeth crunch down through the cracker loudly. "I'm glad I finally got to actually play for you, Kyrie, at your own party no less, and Tock, taking to one knee and playing for you was an absolute highlight of the night for me." Brand says after he swallows. Then, with a grimace, goes to licking a trail of chocolate and marshmallow off of the edge of his knuckle. While he does this, his eyes sway to Dora and Fancy, grinning impishly up at the two. "So Fancy, was it? Dora, Fancy, when are you guys gonna come see me play? I'd love to have you two in the actual audience, it would make me feel better on the nights I get butterflies in my stomach." Sidelong, Brand giggles at the face Olivia makes him. "What kind of fish is that? OMG-fish?"

There's a big wide smile from Fancy when her cooking seems to be going over well. Olivia will get the whole container and be urged to EAT, partly because she's pleased and partly because she needs her hands free to go through her bag again. This time she comes up with a green glass bottle and a short stack of plastic cups. Fish and booze; she came prepared. "Where do you play?" She asks as she casually folds her legs up and just sits down where she is. This is about when she also gets curious about these s'more things, if her intense staring at everyone's s'mores is any indication.

Tock giggles a little over Olivia's fish bliss, between bites of s'more. It is thus that she finds herself with a mouth full of gooey marshmallow when Brand speaks to her again. Pale twin roses of blush bloom in her cheeks, her head dipping slightly until such time as she is able to clear her mouth of sticky dessert. “You're a sweetheart,” she answers at last.

"/I/ didn't get a song," Kyrie teases, nudging Brand lightly. "But everyone seems to have had fun, which makes me happy enough," she says, polishing off her s'more before sitting back down.

Olivia smiles at Brand, showing too many teeth. "Mackerel." she says contentedly, and sorry everyone, but Olivia's eating the whole damn thing. Basically she'd probably just bury her face in the dish if she could, but she has occasion to remember she's an actual person, so she actually sticks to utensils. "That is so good." she says to Fancy in a breathy, damn near post-coital voice.

Brand's pointed ears PERRRRK at the delicious sound that Olivia makes. The last of the s'more devoured, Brand slides back into his lawn chair with lidded eyes; he's the cat that ate the canary as he licks his fingers clean. "Your song is next, Kyrie, just let me try to get these fingers clean." Noticing Tock's blush, Brand smiles thoughtfully, quieting as he thinks to himself, his moments of private counsel are important to him. "Fancy?" Brand considers. "My band, Tooth & Nail, plays all around town, but we're also on the radio, internet, iTunes, CDBaby, and I've got a few extra CDs in my car if anyone wants one. I'd ask Olivia to keep guard on me while I walked to the car, but I don't think she's going anywhere soon."

Tock finishes off her first s'more. “They are good, but /goodness/ trying to keep the stickiness under control is an effort,” she admits with a small, self-deprecating chuckle. “Do you need an escort to fetch something, Brand?” the clockwork girl looks up to the rocker with a slightly raised brow, clearly offering protective detail so Olivia can finish her fishy goodness. It's almost a reflex.

The stack of cups is turned over and unstacked, upright so Fancy can start pouring. She kinda murmurs as she does that, but it's definitely not English whatever she's saying... to the cups. It almost seems like she's not listening to Brand either, but when the last cup has its splash of clear beverage safely inside, she looks up at him to repeat, "Tooth and Nail. Okay." Nod. He then has a cup set in front of him. Kyrie is next. Olivia, with a small grin. Tock. More cups needed? She looks around, almost worried as she counts heads. As she's going through her bag again, she seems to read the threatening look as for real, and suggests to Brand, "You should play the song."

"What is it?" asks Olivia curiously. Oh sure, she'll eat a random fish no question, but she'll ask about drinking mysterious liquid from a cup. There's a grin to Brand. "Tock will protect you. But you should play for Kyrie, she's threatening grievous bodily harm."

Brand beams a smile over to Tock with a shake of his head. "No, no I was just teasing her. Put an amazing cut of fish in front of Olivia and it's like catnip, she won't move for hours." Brand motions to the selkie beside him with a wink. He then looks down to his fingers, making sure they're not caked with crap. "My strings are due for a change and I think I'm okay, Kyrie. Alright, this one? This one is going to be just for you. Move your chair closer and remember, eye contact. Eye contact is important." Snatching up the guitar, Brand strums twice and then reaches into his pocket for a device he slips over one of the frets called a capo. "T and N is in the process of signing to a major label right now, so we haven't had a gig in a little bit, but we're going to play one soon IF Owen allows me to survive Bro-Fest."

The tiny, beginning notes well up on the guitar as Brand shifts in his chair, pointing his attention towards Kyrie. He sucks in a low breath and looks to her face. After the intro, he begins... "Well I've heard there was a secret chord..."

Kyrie grins at Fancy. "I like her," she decides, but she does move her chair closer, leans forward slightly, and grins as she gives the /best/ eye contact /ever/. But once he starts singing, her posture relaxes and the grin eases into a smile. It's not just a good song, it's played /fantastically/ and she's caught. For the moment, the drink in her hand is forgotten, but then, who could blame her, right?

“Thank you,” Tock says as she is given a cup of liquid. She brings it closer to her face for a testing sniff, having not the faintest idea what it contains, after all. The mention of 'Bro-Fest' earns a confused look. But, then Brand is playing lovely songs, and that calls for undivided attention.

The drink Fancy is passing around is soju, which she probably should have mentioned in the previous pose. The more you know! That's likely why she only fills each cup a little, cause it might not be to everyone's taste and it's got some kick. She has a little herself while listening to the next song, so masterfully performed. Those dark eyes of hers always look like they're seeing everything and nothing all at once, but for the duration they look completely unfocused. "Jinjaa meotjida." She says to herself, or possibly her cup that she holds in both hands.

Even Olivia stops nose-diving into her fish. 'Hallelujah' is a song that has an unfortunate reputation of being highly overplayed, but Brand has worked a miracle, making it beautiful and liquid and holy again. And after he finishes, she looks over to Fancy, unable to resist. "You can say that again."

To be fair, it isn't JUST the sweet, thoughtful singing, or the lull of Brand's incense-wafting eyes, nor is it the playing of his guitar. Brand has called down the very power that his Gentry warped into his body into being; Brand isn't human, and in his torture he has come out the other side a creature of passion and performance. The glamour he lets free twists around the performance, attempting to draw the others to hang on his every note as he rocks back and forth with his guitar. Be it reality or a will of the Wyrd, there's a gentle sadness and love to the way he sings. "You saw her bathing on the roof, her beauty in the moonlight...overthrew ya....she tied you to a kitchen chair, she broke your throne and cut your hair, and from your lips she drew a....hallelujah..."

He wanted eye contact, and he got it. Kyrie may have been playfully threatening him a minute ago, but now the big bad valkyrie is just staring at him in something close to awe. Someone could swing a sword at her head right now and she'd probably not even notice. "Bloody hell," she whispers, afraid to break the spell.

Fortunately for all involved, Tock is too distracted by the performance to actually sample the contents of the glass. Or do much of anything else but watch and listen, really.

Fancy does actually start saying it again before snapping to and turning a less ashen shade of grey in the cheeks. That earns Olivia a head-to-the-side quirked up eyebrow funny smirk-a-grin. So embarrassing. She busies herself pouring another drink while composing her face again. Soon after she's right back to spacing out on Brand's performance. So dreamy!

The final lyric is breathily whispered from Brand's mouth, and the last note rings out slowly over the coiled strings of the acoustic guitar, reverberating through the soundbox. A weight comes over Brand's shoulders as his lidded eyes open just a measure to look to Kyrie. A shadow of a smile creeps onto his lip in the corner, and with a press of his tongue to his lip, he wets them once more. Guitar held firmly in his ring-covered hand, he leans up to press a kiss to his friend Kyrie's forehead. "Happy Summer's End." Brand mutters, and then pulls back, brushing a hand through his hair to gauge the reactions of the others around him.

It's a sign of how much she enjoyed the song that Kyrie not only allows the kiss to her forehead, but actually gives Brand a, gasp, hug! It's like the second hug she's ever been seen giving in public, the world is ending! "That was...the most beautiful song I've ever heard, Brand. Thank you," she says, smiling. "I just wish that I could have saved that moment."

Olivia could be called Mona Lisa right now, from the way she's smiling. The experience was no less profound for her, but she's keeping herself in check for...reasons. However, her sentiment offered is sincere. "That was beautiful, Brand." It needs to be said yet again by someone else, even though they all know it.

Tock only nods her agreement for a moment, a pleased smile sketched across her lips. “Absolutely lovely,” she proclaims in soft agreement with the others. That hug from Kyrie only brightens her smile. She glances down at the glass in her hand, having forgotten it was there.

Tock only nods her agreement for a moment, a pleased smile sketched across her lips. “Absolutely lovely,” she proclaims in soft agreement with the others. That hug from Kyrie only brightens her smile. She eventually glances down at the glass in her hand, having forgotten it was there.

"Happy Summer!" Fancy toasts everyone, raising a glass then swiftly knocking the contents back like it was nothing stronger than water. Smiling faintly, but warmly, she unfolds her legs as she rises up like a spindly accordion legged thing and wanders off, perhaps looking for marshmallows and stuff.

Brand leans into the hug from Kyrie, smiling softly into the squeeze. "Some things are meant to be witnessed and never repeated the same way ever again. That was for you, Kyrie." Brand unfurls his arms from Kyrie and straightens. Hair brushed up over the top of his head, he lets out a relieved, if not dizzied, breath. "Thank you, thank you so much, you guys. It means a lot to me that you were all here for this." Brand places a hand over Olivia's forearm, squeezing pleased in the way he matches Tock's smile. And then Fancy's toasting and walking off so quickly. Brand laughs and salutes the woman with a beer bottle, rising as he drinks from it. "Who wants a hug before I go? I kind of want to float out of here like a ghost and leave the rest of you to enjoy the fire."

"You may be right," Kyrie says, smiling and leaning back, glancing around as though worrying that someone might have /seen/ her hug someone voluntarily. "After that, I think I want to just sit here and relax the rest of the night," she admits, sipping at her drink lightly.

At the toasting, Tock finally lifts the glass and sips from it. Sips. And yet makes a small sound of surprise as if something had bitten her afterward, followed by a little, muted cough and seeking out her cider glass to trade for a drink from that. Someone isn't used to liquor. “Oh, goodness. Speaking of enjoying fire...that stuff /burns/,” she admits once she finds her voice, pale cheeks a bit flushed. “I wouldn't argue with that plan, Kyrie."

"Well, on that note, I bid all of you but Olivia here a wonderful night. It was a wonderful party, Kyrie. Tock? Kyrie? Sleep well when you do." Brand presses a hand to Tock's shoulder for a squeeze, then turns to offer to help Olivia up from her chair. Quiet, CHURCH quiet, Brand's lips are a warm smile as he prepares to walk the Selkie back to his car.