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Of Firsts and Fakes
(2013-07-21 - Now)
No description.
Ivo Galvan It says a lot that this is Ivo's idea of an apology.

Now that it has begun to seem as though, barring some grand endeavor, Morrighan is banished to the void and 'Kara' is here to stay, Ivo has begun to feel a shred of shame at his behavior toward the now-innocent dark elf. He was convinced it was all fun and games so long as the image of her haughty prior self remained predominant, but if there's a chance that the Morrighan he'd hoped to tease might never return, then his absurdist vengeance is mere fantasy. There may be a fine line between capitalizing on a momentary weakness for fun and profit and exploiting a vulnerable person, but Ivo tries to observe it.

"Does this bring back any memories?"

But of course, what merit is there in compassion without a good story to go with it? His genuine sympathy for what Morrighan has become is more or less totally veiled by the fact that he refuses to admit basically everything he said before was a lie. That is to say--

"Walking with me, like this?"

He's still running with the whole boyfriend thing.

"I understand if you don't remember," he says maybe a little too cheerfully, walking down one of Fluorgis's wide lanes toward a fountain plaza side by side with his amnesiac companion, the warm sun above unobscured by clouds. He'll understand because /it never happened/ shhh don't worry about it. "But if there's any chance these 'dates' will bring back your memories of what we had, I want to take it." He tilts his face away, melodramatic agony flashing across his features. "Even if... it's painful, knowing you cannot feel as you once did."

It's going to be more painful once she does. Of course, that's exactly what Ivo is hoping will happen. If he can bring Morrighan back through sheer revulsion-- then he can make good on that promise of theirs.

"So until you do," he adds, "let's not... kiss again, or do any of that other stuff." What's that, Ivo? Was that the barest hint of guilt in your voice? "Say, have you tried sea salt ice cream yet?" And it's gone.
Morrighan Alazne Morrighan, or rather, Kara as she was currently known thanks to Avira, walked through the streets of Fluorgis alongside Ivo. As they moved, her gaze was constantly flitting from sight to sight, never staying focused on one thing for too long. She was like a child in a candy shop. And the world was her candy shop.

"Hm?" She mumbled distractedly, staring at some merchant's stall a little longer before her gaze turned to Ivo. "Memories? ..." A pause then as she took another moment to look around, as if scruitinizing her surroundings with more purpose this time. "...Nope! Not a thing!" The elven girl replied cheerfully after, smiling wide as her attention was soon taken by some other random curiosity.

Pausing in front of a clothing shop, she pressed herself against the window to stare at the outfits on display. While her curious gaze rozed over the materials, she thought to herself about the whole memory business. "Um...Well, the other night actually, I had a weird dream...does that count as a memory?" Kara then asked, looking away from the window display and back to the knight errant.

His suggestion for them not to kiss or do any of that other 'relationship stuff' that she still didn't totally understand was met with a slow, confused nod. "Well okay! I don't really get it but-- Huh? Sea Salt Ice Cream?" The question cut off her previous statement midway and she tilted her head, fixing Ivo with an inquisitive gaze. "...I think I have..."

The elf brought a hand to her chin, looking to be in deep thought. "It yeah! Back in Traverse Town with Alma and Emi! Hooray, I remembered something!" Proud for having remembered something so trivial, Kara grinned happily and threw her arms in the air in celebration.

...And this was supposed to be Morrighan.
Ivo Galvan "Horray!"

Ivo laughs merrily and applauds with unforced enthusiasm. Some passerby hesitate at the childish display from two grown adults before hurriedly moving on. Ivo probably enjoys that part just as much as Kara herself.

"Then we're making progress already. Fantastic!" Except this was something she'd experienced /after/ she lost her memories, but you know what, don't worry about it. "It's gotten popular recently, but there've been some new variations. Since it's so hot in Fluorgis, the people here are big fans. I was thinking we could swing by my favorite vendor and try out some of her new creations." Watch out. If Ivo likes it, it's probably weird.

As hoped and anticipated, she doesn't seem to understand why he doesn't want them to kiss anymore but also doesn't interrogate him about what. Something best glossed over, in his opinion. She does, however, seem very interested in the display behind that shop window, and Ivo pauses, a dark eyebrow arching as his smile broadens.

"You like those?" he asks lightly, placing a hand on his hip. "Ever been shopping for clothes yourself? Why don't we go inside so you can try some on?"

He might even not do anything totally terrible.
Morrighan Alazne Laughing at Ivo's enthusiastic response, Kara spun away to go back to looking at the clothes on display. "Popular? Really...? Well, I guess it is good, so-" She nodded then and glanced at Ivo. "Okay! We should go and check it out!" And then a pause as he asked about the clothes she was eyeing prettying hard.

"These? Um...I don't know. I saw Alma staring at some of these back in Traverse Town...I don't really get why people want to wear these sorts of complicated clothes..." She shook her head then and turned away from the store window again, folding her arms behind her back as she looked at Ivo. "Try some on...?"

Staring upwards in thought, she was silent for a bit before nodding slowly. "...It might be fun!"
Ivo Galvan "That's the spirit."

There's no need to launch into an expose on the nuances of fashion if his date is down to explore its possibilites without further motivation. Besides, Ivo finds that Kara's charming laughter puts him in a good mood that needs no enhancing by spoofing or buffoonery. Grinning amiably, he opens the door for the dark elf before sauntering in after her, only to find that the young viera woman behind the counter is staring at both of them with amusement in her eyes.

Whereupon it occurs to Ivo that their little victory dance outside was visible both to the people on the street and anyone looking out the window from within.

"Pardon me," he begins smoothly, electing to simply roll with it, as is his wont, "but she was interested in trying on that outfit you have in the window. And if you have any new designs in stock... preferably suitable for warm weather..." There it is.

"Of course," the woman at the counter says, stepping out from behind it and moving toward the front window to retrieve the object of the first request. "Just one moment, please." She pauses for a moment as she passes by Ivo, leaning in with a smile. "You two are so cute together."

Ivo inclines his head with utmost solemnity.

"Thank you," he replies, suppressing all giddiness.
Morrighan Alazne Entering into the clothing store, Kara was completely ignorant of the fact that people had seen her. And even if she did knew, the emotion called embarrassment didn't seem to have been instilled in her anyway. Thus, upon stepping in, the dark elf waved cheerfully at the shop keeper. "Hiiii! We want to-" And then Ivo spoke for her, in which she nodded along.

"Yeah, that!" She spoke after, watching as the Vieran woman moved from the counter and to the window to acquire the first item requestion. Whatever she had whispered to Ivo was lost on Kara however as she had moved off to some other part of the store, already distracted by another outfit on display.
Ivo Galvan Ivo is as pleased as can be, arms crossed by the entrance to the store as he watches with dancing eyes at Kara's seemingly boundless enthusiasm. Where at first she seemed more the shrinking violet, now that she has grown slightly more accustomed to this world, a childlike curiosity has taken over which, frankly, echoes Ivo's own. If there is any such thing as a pure essence to the knight-errant, it is the sense of wonder that motivates his drive to produce new and interesting situations (if sometimes knowingly at the expense of others). Seeing that urge unrestrained in a beautiful woman is very appealing--

"If you want to try on anything else, just say so, Kara."

--and somehow reassuring.

"Oh, here we are."

A few seconds late, it occurs to Ivo that it didn't even seem strange to him to call Morrighan by her new name.

"Sorry about the wait," says the young Vieran woman, seemingly more than happy to help out with customers as eager and high-spirited as these two. "Here's the one you were looking at--" As Kara remarked, it's complicated, with cinches and buckles in various places and, while quite elegant and dazzling to behold, looks like it'd be difficult to put on in the morning. "--and here's one of our new summer designs," she adds with a smile to Ivo, offering Kara a loose off-the-shoulder tunic of a light fabric which looks like it would be exceedingly comfortable, even if it's a bit daringly short. The corner of Ivo's lips twitch, which suggests nothing to most people and everything to those who know him well.

"They both look good," is all he says, with the sort of mildly amused indulgence that a good-nautured man on a date probably would have in this sort of situation. He's really playing the part.

"If you need some help fastening up the former," the viera asides to Kara, "I'd be happy to help -- though I'm sure your boyfriend would too."

Ivo's eyes rise ceilingward, as though long-suffering, causing the woman to suppress a laugh. Little does she realize that in fact he is gazing heavenward and offering silent prayers of thanks to whatever sinister deity made this possible for him.
Morrighan Alazne "Ahhhh, I don't know. I was just looking, but this one seems kind of weird." She pointed towards the outfit she had been staring at. Past a normal looking dress and right at a rather scandelous looking bikini. "This looks...pointless to wear. There's almost nothing at all." She looked towards Ivo, adopting a confused expression.

"What is this for? Why would anyone wear this?" Apparently she didn't know what a beach was.

Well then.

The question was shuffled off to the wayside however as the Vieran woman returned with the outfits previously requested. And like that, Kara totally forgot her inquiry regarding the swimsuit and bounded over to look. "Oooooh...." The first outfit was something similar to what she'd worn regularly before. But now...the sight of the dress illicited not a single memory. Nothing.

The other design was met with an equally curious and impressed look. "I'll try this one on first!" The elf announced, taking the summer outfit into her arms. Immediately then, she showed off her total lack of shame by beginning to remove the clothes she already had on. Right there. In the middle of the store.

What? She didn't know what a changing room was!
Ivo Galvan Hello, scandelous bikini. Hello, scandelous mental images.

"Well," Ivo begins breezily, since he seems to delight in nothing more than explaining ridiculous things, "typically, when people take baths, they take off all their clothes. You remember, right? But sometimes, there are these people in armor called Judges who make rules about what you can and can't wear or use in a given place. So sometimes a Judge will make a rule that you have to wear clothes, and so if you want to take a bath, you--"

Oh, the outfits are ready.

"Well, it's all very silly, in any case," he concludes.

Ivo gazes on in interest to see if Kara reacts unusually to the first outfit, but there doesn't seem to be any flicker of recognition. Nodding to himself, he furrows his brow and begins to ponder just what sort of triggers might have some possible effect on Morrighan's amnesia, which leads him to wonder just what specifically led to this, which leads him to space out for a couple seconds until the viera's shriek of surprise elicits a double-take from him--


--and then upraised eyebrows, as he slaps his fist into his palm.

"I forgot about /that/ part."

"What are you talking about?" the viera cries in dismay as she reaches out to grab hold of Kara's clothes mid-removal, trying to pull them back on as a passerby outside gawking through the window strides directly into a lamppost. "Say something to her!"

Ivo considers this for a moment before his eyes suddenly widen dramatically. "Kara! Watch out! Judge rule!" he exclaims, without explanation. "You can't take off your clothes here! You have to do it behind that curtain!" He points toward the changing area. "Hurry! Before we're caught!"

You could just-- why do you-- does it need to be--

Oh, forget it.
Morrighan Alazne The swimsuit explanation made no sense. In fact, Kara probably lost a few braincells listening to it, so it was a good thing that he didn't get to finish!

Neverminding that though, she was quite busy inadvertently putting on a show for hapless passerbys outside when the shopkeeper's surprised shriek drew a confused look from her. "...Huh? What's wrong?" She asked innocently, attempting to remove her skirt against the Viera's insistence that it remain on.

Ivo mentioning the Judge rule just made her frown in confusion. "That rule? But it doesn't make sense. Why can't I just change here? What's wrong with that?" But still, the Vieran woman proceeded to push her along towards the changing area regardless, preemptively ending the debate before it could begin.

With that crisis out of the way, Kara proceeded to go on changing behind the curtain, still unable to comprehend the whole issue. A minute or two later, the curtain was pulled back and she stepped out, tugging lightly at the fabric hanging loose off her shoulders.

"....I like this one. It feels nice to wear!" She spoke cheerfully, spreading her arms and spinning once before coming to a stop facing Ivo and the shop keeper. "What do you think?
Ivo Galvan "You mustn't question the Judges," Ivo insists. "Their rule is absolute, and if we defy it, we'll be punished!" Perhaps realizing that he is going to be of little use here, the viera simply takes advantage of Kara's hesitation to push her along toward the curtain, and thus the crisis is averted. Ivo, crossing his arms again, nods in satisfaction, until he feels the now-dubious gaze of the shoptender upon him. "The ways of her world are strange indeed," he explains.

"I'm not sure who the strange one is here," the viera mutters.

Ivo opens his mouth to retort, but forgets all about it when Kara emerges from behind the curtain, spinning about with a joyous air, her loosely-draped attire flaring up dangerously high from her sudden movement. Her shoulders, her legs, and her dazzlingly happy smile are all the highlights of this change. Ivo finally shuts his mouth and offers a smile of his own, a bit overwhelmed. He's never encountered a grown woman with such a girlish energy before, and he has to keep reminding himself why. In moments like this, it doesn't seem to matter.

"You look great!" the viera enthuses, the first to speak as she closes in, straightening the tunic in various places, their earlier transgressions seemingly set aside. "It suits you perfectly! Oh, you have to get it!" She glances back at Ivo, and he distractedly wonders why she's staring at him until he blinks and realizes he's been silent this whole time.

"It looks good," he says, smile growing. "You look cute."

His tone sounds a little odd. It's the sound of sincerity.

The viera seems satisfied by this, because she's begun bustling around, muttering to herself about new shoes or something or other. Ivo just grins and shrugs. If they start accessorizing, they'll be here forever. But out of curiosity, he glances behind himself at the countertop display. "Hey, Kara, what about a necklace?" he suggests, looking down at their offerings. "With that outfit, it'd probably look good." What with her shoulders and collarbone bared, it'd draw attention to her skin and descend down into her... hu hu hu...

"Uh, what about this?" Ivo asks, distracting himself by picking up a rather understated but attractive pendant made from a rose quartz crystal with a silver medallion backing. "It kind of reminds me of the World Shard my friends and I found on one of our earlier adventures." He pauses, and then smiles at her again. "How about it? To commemorate your time spent so far with me and the Shard Seekers."

He tilts his head, and adds without thinking much of it,

"A new memory given weight and shape, one you can hold on to."
Morrighan Alazne "I do?" She asked, looking over towards the Viera and smiling happily. "Thanks! ...What's what you're supposed to say, right?" She then went on to mumbled to herself, nodding once in order to assure herself that yes, you were supposed to thank people for compliments.

Kara remained relatively still as the the shop keeper moved in to fix various details that she herself had missed. Once done, the elf watched as the viera then scuttled off, mentioning something about new shoes or whatever. ".....?"

Her gaze then was drawn back to Ivo as he suggested the necklace. "Huh?" Curious now, she moved to approach him, looking over the pendant briefly. It was simple, but pretty. Eventually Kara wound up smiling again and nodded, completely oblivious to the possible implications based on her current wear. "I think it looks nice. Okay then, I'll take it!" But something he said after gave her pause.

"...What's a world shard?" ....Well now.

It was right about this point though that the elf trailed off, seeming to realize something. "...Oh." Her smile turned a bit sheepish then and she began to scratch her cheek with a finger.

"...I don't have any money."
Ivo Galvan Ivo, at least, saw this one coming.

"Don't worry about it," he says, stepping toward Kara with a smile. "It's a date, right? This time it's on me. That is," he clarifies, "I'll pay for it." Do people buy each other clothes and jewelry on dates? "Just think about how to return the favor sometime." Oh, that's unfair, she doesn't have any reference points.

He clearly just wants to see what she comes up with.

"One moment..." After approaching, he raises his hands and reaches behind Kara's neck to fasten the necklace. The chain pools down, the crystal glinting in the light above the soft fabric of her new outfit. "Beautiful." The narrow silver medallion comes to rest right between... hu hu hu. "M-maybe I'll just... adjust it a little..."

"How is everything?" the viera asks as she reappears with a bright smile, causing Ivo to start back in surprise, forcing his expression to remain neutral and succeeding less so than usual. "Was there anything else I can assist you with?"

Ivo's silent for a moment, but not because he's been caught flat-footed. Having withdrawn moments before, he's now in a position to take in the full sight of Kara in both tunic and necklace. It looks better than he imagined. Actually, he was just going with the flow for the most part. He didn't expect her to look nearly this good. She looks like a young lady out on the town with her-- well, with her boyfriend.

"No," he says at last, seeming somehow distracted, "if we spend any more time in here, the sun might start to go down. Is it alright with you if we head out now, Kara?"

He seems to have missed her earlier question, but he does seem preoccupied all of a sudden, even though his gaze remains trained on the elf.
Morrighan Alazne "Really? That's...okay?" It seemed a bit much, but she couldn't argue much without having much of a reference point to work with. Thus, she soon wound up just smiling and nodding. "Okay! I'll do so!" She would have fallen into a contemplative trance then, trying to think of some way to repay him. Maybe he wanted her to do-

Oh whoops, her reverie was broken when he approached, hands reaching behind her neck with the article of jewelry. "Oh?" Staying still, she stared up at Ivo as he fastened the necklace around her. She winced a bit upon feeling the cold metal of the backing contact her skin, but she didn't seem to be bothered otherwise. Not even when he mentioned 'adjusting' it.

Thankfully for her, and perhaps unfortunately for him, the viera returned then, drawing Kara's attention. "Hm?, I think I'm done here." Or rather, that was to say that her curiosity with this establishment had run it's course for now. She nodded to Ivo upon hearing his question as well. "Okay! Let's go then! What else were we going to do?"

And all the while she remained smiling, oblivious to Ivo's apparent preoccupied demeanor.
Ivo Galvan Ivo pays for the outfit and accessory and packs up Kara's original outfit in a sort of trance -- much later, when more fully cognizant, he will bemoan the markup on boutique clothing -- as the boundary between ironic and unironic sentiment inexorably blurs. His primary objective is obviously to bring the real Morrighan back so that his mischief has more meaning. There's no point in teasing someone who can't resist and doesn't know any better. But it begins to seem to him as though this sunny charm of hers is a rarity in its own right.

What exactly does he want out of this, again?

urning back to her and witnessing her unabated enthusiasm, Ivo grins and opens the door, stepping out and holding it open. "Whatever we want," he lightly replies. "We have the day to ourselves."

It no longer seems to matter.

"Oh, no!" he abruptly exclaims as soon as the two of them depart, pressing a finger to his ear as though picking up on some sort of signal. "Judge rule!" The road ahead of them is paved with broad fragments of sandstone, leading to a fountain plaza in the distance. "We can't step on any of the cracks, or else the vendors in the plaza won't sell us any ice cream! Come on! We don't have much time!" Whereupon, with no further ado, he begins to hop from foot to foot along the paving stones. A passing child, holding a dripping creamsicle, stares in befuddlement at Ivo's antics. "Watch out, kid!" the knight-errant exclaims.

"Are you an idiot?" the child replies.

"Ah ha ha ha!" Laughing without restraint, Ivo continues avoiding the cracks, averting the judgment of his imaginary Judges and completely ignoring the very real judgment of the staring passerby.
Morrighan Alazne Ivo's inner struggle. His questioning of his purpose for this charade goes, as usual, unnoticed by Kara who is far too busy enjoying herself. "Judge rule?" She asked as they stepped outside, staring at Ivo in confusion. "There's another one?" And then her gaze was drawn to the ground, observing the cracks. "Um...well, okay-"

And like that, she began to run. Sort of. All while avoiding the various cracks dispersed throughout the plaza.

It was harder than it looked actually.

She skipped past the child that Ivo had addressed, but the question they had asked drew a short laugh from the dark elf and she wound up losing her footing. "Pffft-ahahaha-w-whoa!" Teetering just before a dreaded crack in the pavement, Kara flailed wildly. ...Which was probably a bad idea in the outfit she was currently wearing.

And then time seemed to slow down as she tumbled forward, her doom fast approaching...

Or she could just grab Ivo's cape and pull him down too.

Yes, that seemed like a much better course of action. And so that's what she did.
Ivo Galvan Almost made it!

"Ha ha ha hargghh--"

Lurching back suddenly as Kara seizes him by the cloak, Ivo twists awkwardly in a surprised and instinctive attempt to see what's caught him only to encounter an elf stumbling toward him face-first. Opening his arms to catch her but slipping on the pavement, he staggers backward and falls--


--just next to the steps leading up to the plaza.

"Ow ow ow..."

Wincing, Ivo glances up only to blink as he finds Kara's face perilously close to his own. Ah, there's something hard digging into his sternum. That must be the necklace. Ah, but there's something soft pressing against his chest, too. That must be--

"H-how'd we do," he manages, glancing aside, trying to crane his neck to see how they've ended up without looking at what her outfit reveals in its disarray. "Hey, it looks like you're good," he supplies, sounding a little dazed. Since Kara fell on him, only he ended up touching any of the cracks. "Looks like you get ice cream!" He hits his head on the pavement /and/ he doesn't get ice cream? What luck.

"Are you, uh..."

Well, it look be worse.

"Are you alright...?"
Morrighan Alazne "Whoa-whaaaaaaa!" Following the inevitable pull of gravity, Kara wound up falling forward. ...The impact wasn't quite as bad as she figured it was going to be, considering how hard the ground looked. "Uuuh..." Opening her eyes once the dust settled, what she had found was not the ground, but rather...a white tunic? "Huh?"

Her gaze traveled upwards until her eyes met with Ivo's. "Oh...whoops!" And then she just smiled and laughed, making light of her blunder. Oblivous to how she might have been showing out, she looked back as well, taking note of the situation. It would seem that she was safe after all! ...All thanks to Ivo's 'heroic' sacrifice.

But Kara was not evil, she nodded quickly at his question, having come up with an idea. "I'm okay, and don't worry, Ivo! I'll share mine with you! It's not fair if you don't get any after working so hard, right?"
Ivo Galvan Still slightly dazed, seeing Kara smiling radiantly down at him, senses reeling but most insistently reminding him of her body pressing down on him, Ivo appears stunned at her last remark.

"...Get... any?"

But it's only the first date--

"Oh... ha ha, thanks."

He's smiling, but he sounds just a little disappointed.

"I think the Judges will be fine with that."

He rises to a seated position, his arms resting against Kara's back so she doesn't tumble off him, ending up somewhat incidentally with her in his lap. It wasn't intentional, seriously. He'll get up in just a moment. They have the whole day ahead of them. And who knows what the following days will hold for this new woman and her strange new future, and what part, if any, Ivo will play in it? But for now--

"So what do you think?"

Maybe he'll stay like this for just a bit longer.

"I'm a pretty good boyfriend, right?"
Morrighan Alazne "Good!" She spoke cheerfully, offering no resistance or even suspicion upon ending up in his lap. Onlookers that had been staring at them had all mostly shaken their heads and gone on with their own business by this point. Kara remained oblivious to the scene they had made and simply tilted her head slightly at his question.


She took a bit to think about it. And then a bit longer. But in the end, she had no previous experience to work on and thus her answer as as such.

"I guess you are. You're nice and fun to be around!"

And with that, she rose up off of his lap on her own and pointed into the plaza. "Come on, let's go already!"
Ivo Galvan "Right?"

Even though he knows she couldn't possibly fully understand the question, even though it's nonsense based upon deception to begin with, Ivo seems pleased by her response.

"Yeah, let's see what they've got."

Or maybe he was just pleased by how long her reflections took.

Well, Ivo muses as he gets to his feet, the sun is shining, the day is new, and a beautiful woman is laughing gaily while on a date with him, without a care in the world, seeking only new adventures.

So reasons why don't really matter, do they?

This scene contained 21 poses. The players who were present were: Ivo Galvan, Morrighan Alazne