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No title.
(2013-04-12 - 2013-04-16)
No description.
Ramza Beoulve The morning after Avira came started as any other.

The sun hadn't even begun to peak over the horizon, when Ramza rose from his tent. Other than Artemis, he was frequently the first to arise. The burdens of leadership tended to cut his sojourns short.

After he checked upon Lavian, the lady who had taken the final watch for the night, he retrieved the wooden training swords, and began the short trek to the nearby brook with Artemis. Along the way, he'd give her a coy glance, before continuing to look ahead. "Did you sleep well?"
Artemis Eurus Artemis was generally awake even before Ramza. As soon as the stars began to fade from the sky Artemis was awake, stoking the fire and preparing tea. After their morning tea, then she would head down toward the brook.

Artemis looks toward Ramza as she reaches over to take her practice sword, giving it a rather playful swing at his behind before their official training even begins. "I slept as I always do," she comments, which is really no answer at all.

"I think perhaps I will have to ask you about your comments with Lady Avira however. What 'rough patch' with Margaux?" she asks, getting right down to it.
Ramza Beoulve And as usual, her morning tea was fantastic, and eased his awakening a great deal.

When they arrived at the brook, he'd hand her the practice sword, taking a moment to walk over to the Brook and splash some water on his face to refresh himself. He didn't comment on her answer, and might have tried to change the subject to something else, except she straight out asked about Margaux. He decided not to lie, to his credit, he just didn't tell the whole story. "She's still a member of the Corpse Brigade. The Corpse Brigade was put to rout by the actions of myself and my brother, General Zalbaag. When first we met, she told me that one day she'd plunge her sword into my heart to venge the fall of the Corpse Brigade."

He'd shrug his shoulders. "We've reconciled, I don't believe she intends to kill me any longer."

He'd take a moment to stretch out his legs, before taking a practice swing of his own, as if he hadn't said anything of significance whatsoever.
Artemis Eurus The masked woman turns her gaze on Ramza, blinking several times as he explains what exactly was rough about their relationship. Slowly, Artemis' shoulders slump. "....By all the gods, I have truly chosen the most difficult path possible, haven't I?" she asks, looking up toward the sky.

Artemis then looks to Ramza, quickly blocking his practice swing. "What am I to do with you Ramza? Most of the world wants to kill you and you seem to think nothing of it. You may not put too much value on your life, but I have sworn an oath and you seem dedicated to making my job difficult. Could you not have /told/ me Margaux said such a thing? Blood and ashes. I hope you were at least on your guard around her," she rebuffs, stepping forward to take a quick over-hand swing, followed by another, then a sweeping horizontal strike.
Ramza Beoulve He'd give her a bewildered look. "Surely I'm not making this /that/ difficult for you, am I?"

He'd parry the overhand swing, sidestep the second swing, then took a short hop backwards at the horizontal strike. "I thought I had! In the tavern, where we met the first time. You may have thought it was a jape. And I am on my guard around her. Don't worry. I'm certain she won't try again."

He must have not realized that he had a slip of the tongue when he stated /try again/.

He pressed forward with an overhand slash of his own, before attempting a low strike, near her knees, and then an upward slash with it afterwards.
Artemis Eurus Artemis growls, blocking the over-hand strike with her blade and pushing upward to try to throw him off balance so the lower attack is poorly placed, missing her completely.

"AGAIN, Ramza? She tried to kill you?" she asks, though apparently she already knows the answer.

"Yes...yes you are making this extremely difficult for me. Suppose I have only myself to blame. I should have observed you more before I made my oath perhaps--tch, though knowing me I would have made it anyway," she replies.

Artemis doesn't even step in to attack, falling into a guarded stance, letting him press the offense.
Ramza Beoulve He'd actually stop completely when she yelled at him, standing there as he tried to carefully measure his words. "I promised her that I wouldn't speak of the circumstances. I would prefer not to discuss it at all, but to put your fears to rest... She pulled her blade on me, but she was unable to strike. I talked her down. She may even be.. joining us, soon."

He'd give her a sheepish look. "You didn't need to make your oath, though I certainly appreciate that you did. I enjoy your company, Artemis. You've only been here for a few weeks but I couldn't imagine /not/ having you with us, whether you were oathbound, or not."

He didn't press in to attack, perhaps waiting to see her reaction to all of this before he'd continue.
Artemis Eurus When she hears that he had talked her down, Artemis cannot help but laugh. It seems so completely....Ramza. Yet he insists there is nothing special about him. What nerve.

Artemis shakes her head, smiling now. "Very well Ramza. I shall trust you in this I suppose. Be careful though, she may just fall in love with you," she warns with a smile. A situation like that, it would be pretty typical.

Artemis watches him, letting out a small sigh. "I do not regret my oath Ramza. Despite how infuriating you can be. I am sure the feelings is mutual," she adds, grinning once more.
Ramza Beoulve Now he truly did look bewildered, and confounded at the same time by her amusement, and then her statement afterwards. "I certainly appreciate your trust but what makes you think that she'd fall in love with me? Isn't she trying to encourage the two of us into courtship together?"

He watched her, with something of a smile. "I don't find you infuriating at all. Though I admit, your ways certainly took some getting used to."

And then, as if nothing at all had happened between them, he'd take up the sword once more in a low guard, giving her a moment to see that he intended to strike, before he feinted with a horizontal swing, that he stopped short, before thrusting forward.
Artemis Eurus "It is merely to tease you. You did not realize?" she asks. Oh Ramza. "My ways....that's a nice way to say infuriating," she laughs. "I'm not sure you have seen all of my 'ways' just yet Ramza Beoulve," she replies, reading the feint behind his strike. Artemis takes a calculated risk then, letting him thrust and only turning slightly and moving forward, trapping his practice blade quickly between her arm and her side then twisting, attempting to disarm him.
Ramza Beoulve Another embarassed look, no he hadn't realized that she was teasing her at all. Especially given her recent conversation on how his kindness might make multiple women fall in love with him. He didn't seem to know what to make of that, yet.

"No, I mean /your ways/, you're not infuriating at all. Though what have you yet to show me of your self?"

And he allowed her to disarm her, as he suddenly twists around into her guard, parallel to her with his back against her, attempting to thrust his elbow backwards into her solar plexus.
Artemis Eurus Artemis laughs. "Are we not at least in part made up of our ways?" she asks, letting him turn, and jab her in the solar plexus in order to lock both her arms around him, pining him against her, her grip like iron.

Of course, he could always stomp her feet, reverse this, or attempt to throw her. But as she presses her lips against his ear she is fairly sure he isn't going to. "Oh, a great many things," she says, whispering her answer into his ear.
Ramza Beoulve "I suppose we are. My ways are as much a part of me as breathing."

At first he seems like he might do just that, but this is a sparring match, not life or death, so instead after she pins his arms just smiles as he's generally wont to do when he knows he's defeated. He tended to be pretty humble about that sort of thing, as he learned more in defeat than he did in victory. When her lips press against his ear though, he isn't sure what to make of it initially, even as she speaks.

Artemis may think that he may have missed the flirtation in her statement, or maybe that it was unwelcome, except that he turned his head to regard her with a look that certainly showed some interest, despite him looking rather bashful. He might have even /acted/ on it, had his arms not been pinned, but it would be difficult to ascertain that without releasing him. "Oh? Like what?"
Artemis Eurus After a moment she does release him. She'd thought that would have made him positively weak in the knees. Was he really get use to her? Was he oblivious? Had he decided he was not interested?

When he asks his question, Artemis laughs lightly. "The point of my statement was to leave you to your imagination Ramza," she replies. "Surely you have an imagination."

Artemis steps back then places her sword down, assuming a defensive cat stance; one foot before the other, her weight on her back leg, arms up and ready to defend.
Ramza Beoulve He certainly didn't seem all that interested in /sparring/ any longer, as he flushed at her explanation as to whether he had an imagination. He certainly didn't know how to respond to whether he had an imagination regarding /that/. Giving her an embarassed look, after a short time, he'd ask a simple question in a shy, almost quiet tone of voice, without elaborating on it any further.

"What do you see in me, Artemis?"
Artemis Eurus Artemis drops the pretenses of a spar then, relaxing her limbs to place a hand on her hip, tilting her head slightly toward him. This was a serious question, she would not tease him now.

"You're young for me--but you are honorable, dedicated,'re a fine warrior with a humble nature. Overall Ramza, you are...a good person. A better person than I thought existed in this world, to be truthful. You are often a fool out of ignorance, but it is...charming, in a way? Fool or no, the world needs you. It needs your idealism, your honesty, your simple belief in the goodness of others...."

"You accepted me at my word that I hadn't killed my father. You talked down a woman set on killing you. Heh--you are willing to take on the world. You are stupidly brave."

"Will that suffice?"
Ramza Beoulve Well when you put it like that.. Others in his company often acted like they were in /awe/ of him and exaggerated his capabilities and accomplishments, and that was generally so uncomfortable for him that they stopped treating him that way, but honest compliments like that took him aback in a good way, even if it was mixed in with such comments as /foolish/, /ignorance/ and /stupidly/, that was honest criticism that he found refreshing, and appreciated that she took the good with the bad. He did manage a faint smile by the end of it. And then he had to complicate the conversation by asking a second question.

"Are you in love with me?"
Artemis Eurus Consider Artemis officially dumbfounded. Really?! REALLY?! Artemis stiffens, staring at him, something inside of her twisting, barbed wires tightening.

"No," she answers, blinking. "No I'm love with you...blood and ashes Ramza, I don't even know if I was in love with Marius. I...I am obviously fond of you....perhaps..." she trails off. Why is this so crippling for her? It is patently ridiculous. Perhaps, she is afraid of the possibility.

"Perhaps...UGGGH," she says, then throws her arms in the air and turns away.
Ramza Beoulve Maybe he actually found that a relief of sorts. If she loved him, then he'd feel terrible about himself, since he wasn't sure if he loved her. He just, didn't know. When she turns away from him in a fit of frustration, or maybe even disgust, he'd take a few steps forward towards her until he was right behind her.

"I'm fond of you too. I don't know if I'm in love with you, Artemis..."

He'd put his arms around her, from behind, loosely enough that she'd be able to turn around easily if she wanted to, leaning forward to whisper near her ear "...but I think I'd like to find out, if I am."

He'd wait for a time, to see if she'd turn around. If she didn't, he would just continue to hold her. If she did, and it didn't look like she was going to rebuke him or that it was unwelcome, he'd try to press his lips against hers in a kiss.
Artemis Eurus What a strange thing to feel relieved about--yet somehow disappointed simultaneously. This could be incredibly awkward, which she really should have seen coming.

When she feels his presence behind her she does not move, allowing him to wrap his arms around her waist. She sighs gently, leaning back against him slightly.

After a time she turns, closing her eyes and letting him kiss her. He was growing braver--good. Or maybe not. There is a part of her that wonders if there is room for love in her heart. Is she capable still, after what happened?

Still, she kisses him, placing a hand on his arm, slowly traveling upward in a gentle caress until she reaches his shoulder, trailing to the back of his neck and up until she can tangle her hand in his hair and pull him deeper into the kiss.

And trouble.
Ramza Beoulve He was young, inexperienced, and naive. Not immature perhaps, in his expectations, else he'd probably be one of those fools who believed in love at first sight or nothing. Even so, it was possible that she was right in that it could be incredibly awkward. He had no such feelings about not being capable of love.

As she turns, he'd pull her closer into the embrace, closing his own eyes as he pressed into the kiss. This time, one of his hands lightly trails its way up, from her waist, up the small of her back, and even higher than that, until he too reaches the back of her head. Her hair felt just as silky as he imagined it, being as beautiful as it was. Maybe he /was imagining/ even that, given their lifestyle, but it sure seemed that way to him.

And then to show that perhaps, he was learning, his tongue flits briefly into her mouth. It was a touch tenuous as a gesture, as he was unsure whether he was even kissing her correctly.

After a time, he'd finally draw his mouth away, more than a touch breathless by the gesture. He didn't say anything, he'd just offer a shy smile.
Artemis Eurus One must be willing to teach in matters such as these--though honestly, he is doing just fine considering. There is little to be concerned about, instinct is strong and deeply imbedded.

Her hair is quite soft, as she is actually quite meticulous with grooming it. Wash with chamomile and lavender, condition and oil as necessary...yes, she has certain luxuries in which she indulges.

She smiles briefly against his mouth when she feels that tenuous tongue and meets it eagerly with her own

Before he pulls away she bites down very gently on his lower lip, then lets go, though she does not disentangle herself completely. Indeed, she smiles mischievously and brings her free hand around to give his behind a firm squeeze, laughing lightly.
Ramza Beoulve He was still smiling, even when she gives his posterior a squeeze, the cheeks on his /face/ definitely turned bright red though.

He wondered if he was supposed to return the gesture, or whether it'd be misinterpreted. He's not sure! She did have a cute butt though, not that he was staring at it, he might have just, glanced, once. Maybe.

He'd give her another bashful look, pulling her in a touch closer. His voice was perhaps teasing. "Keep taking my breath away like that, and mayhaps it will be even sooner than you think..."

On the falling in love with her issue that is. What else could she possibly misinterpret that as meaning?
Artemis Eurus Artemis raises a brow beneath her mask, her lips spreading to widen her grin as she presses herself up against him, kissing him again, brief but heated, firm and wanting. "Oh, good," she replies, then disentangles herself from him with a lingering smile, turning to gather up the practice weapons and walk back to camp. "Full day ahead, we'd better get started," she says, her smile still evidence in her voice. She may look over her shoulder just to make sure he's watching.
Ramza Beoulve What else would he have his eyes on, right now? Still he'd chuckle awkwardly at her statement to return to the camp, puttin a hand to the back of his neck, as he smiled like a fool. "Yes. A full day. Much to do."

Why did he have a feeling that he wouldn't remember much else of the day, as he followed her back to camp.

This scene contained 25 poses. The players who were present were: Ramza Beoulve, Artemis Eurus