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Reservations [Alarik]

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  • Reservations [Alarik]

    Madoc'leri'kleoni had been staying on Bastion for some time now and had yet to visit the Hard Heart Cantina. It seemed more upscale than the usual places he preferred. But, his pay had been good and he was in the mood for something nice to eat. Upon stepping in the door of the fine establishment, he nearly about faced upon seeing how many people were crushed into the foyer; waiting to be seated on what was clearly a busy evening. The only thing that halted him was a shrill voice coming from the host stand.

    "Mr. Leoni? Mr. Leoni over here! I have your table ready." A human woman garbed in the livery of a hostess flapped her arms in his direction. A sable brow arched and he had to glance over his shoulder to make sure that, through some weird coincidence, she wasn't talking to some other person with a similar surname as he. Well, kind of surname. Shrugging, he began to move toward her.

    "Good to see you again, Mr. Leoni. I have your usual table ready. Are you ready to be seated?"

    What. The. Hell. "I sure am!" He said with a congenial smile. The hostess returned it and then began leading him to a sequestered room marked with a reserved sign out front. The table he was taken to was illuminated by a large candle and was covered by a snowy tablecloth. Score.

    Plopping down into the chair that the hostess had pulled out for him, he accepted the menu she held aloft and scanned over the wine menu wedged between the appetizers and entrees.

  • #2
    Stepping out of his transportation, Alarik gave a brief tug to each cuff of his uniform, and a quick tug to the bottom hem of his outfit. Everything pressed and straightened, he headed for the entrance to the Hard Heart. He was grateful for his reservation as he entered to espy a particularly busy evening. Customers flooded the waiting section, bantering back and forth with drinks they had accumulated from servers dedicated to doing just such. He, however, moved right to the hostess stand and waited patiently.

    The woman returned, passing him a quizzical look. By Alarik's assumption she didn't frequently see Chiss, but in truth it was odd to see two in such a short span of time. "May I help you?" She questioned of him. "I have a reservation. I believe it is under the core name Leoni." Fresh with the name on her mind, the woman shook her head. "I apologize, but Mr Leoni has already checked in at his table..." This perked a raised brow from Alarik. "That is obviously impossible as I am here, and still waiting to be seated. Now if you will see me back..."

    Her face flushed, obviously mentally checking if she had made some form of a mistake. He produced his ID tag in that instant, showing her proof of his last name. "I suppose next time I will need to inform whoever takes my reservation that I am Chiss. Perhaps that will prevent the confusion in the future." The woman searched for an alternate table to give him to rectify the problem, taking a moment to register his words mentally. "Mr. Leo-er the other man who checked in was also Chiss, actually."

    At this, Alarik spared a glance past her. "Take me to my original table." He insisted. Intent on seeing who the imposter was, or whether it was the Aristocra. "That is not a request." He clarified, before she could protest. She moved to escort him, keeping her eyes down.

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    • #3
      The waitress assigned to the reserved table he'd been seated at was busy pouring him a drink while he continued to scan the menu. Facing the open doorway they'd past through to get to the room, the Chiss was able to observe all who meandered before it. Or, stopped just in front of it. He felt eyes upon him and he looked up, lowering the menu. The hostess from before was motioning someone in and his breath hitched slightly when he saw who it was. Damn, caught already. Clerik cracked a grin at the Chiss who entered and then took up the stem of the wine glass, now full of chardonnay.

      "Well, imagine that. I've got family on Bastion and my father never cared to mention it." He eyed the younger Chiss with interest. Without a doubt, this was his brother. The Aristocra, their father, had mentioned him on more than one occasion; taunted him, really. So, this was the navy genius that his father favored. Just what exactly was he doing here, he wondered. "Alarik." I'm your illegitimate brother that our shared father undoubtedly failed to mention. "Care to join me?" He asked, raising the glass in a mock toast before taking a gulp of the expensive wine. Immediately after, he bursting into a fit of coughs and spit the dry, vulgar swill back into the glass from whence it came.

      "GAH! That's awful!"

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      • #4
        "He mentioned it to me." It was the first time he'd ever heard of his brother, actually. Seating himself, he dismissed the hostess without another word, and stole the menu from his older sibling. "You don't mind, do you? This is my table first and foremost, after all." Their was something about having a brother that had made his existence just slightly less special, but his accomplishments and the attention garnered on him served to rectify those diminished feelings of adequacy.

        Glancing to the server that rejoined them to take his drink order, he briefly put his brother out of his mind. "I'll have the same wine. Oh and...separate checks, if you would." He wanted to ensure his brother wouldn't duck out early, leaving him with the responsibility of paying for the both of them, expensive wine and all. "Clerik." He finally commented back, sifting through the menu without making eye contact. "And what use do the Imperials have for you?"

        He could already tell the differences. Clerik was his polar opposite, probably due to the difference in attention garnered on them. When the server returned, he gestured to an item on the menu, before handing it back across the table towards his brother to choose what he would have.

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        • #5
          He mentioned it to me.

          The expression he wore conveyed just enough interest to disguise the doubt those easily spoken words invoked. It was entirely likely that his existence didn't sit very well with this perfect, favored son; particularly, since Clerik wasn't anything like a typical Chiss. It was true that he shared in their penchant for analytical thinking and cold logic; but, having been locked away and ignored for the majority of his life had instilled a defiant streak that had a tendency to overwrite the innate sense of duty that guided most of his kind. Not to say that it was completely gone.

          The question his brother asked was barbed but brought a smirk to the elder's face. He was more than used to dealing with that kind of cynicism and ruthlessness, which he had come to expect from their Father. "Oh, I am a man of many talents rather than a one trick pony. Let's just say that the missions I am sent on are very covert in nature." He offered with a mockingly friendly smile and an almost mistaken sip of that ghastly wine. He scooted the glass further away and turned his crimson eyes up to the waitress. "Forget the wine. We'll have your finest whiskey, the bottle, and I'll have the steak. Rare." He paused, aiming a glance at his brother. "You can hold whiskey, right?"

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          • #6
            He assumed the statement of talents was a jab taken at him, but he also didn't put much stock in it. For all his bluster, Valerian could have been a one trick pony who believed himself more capable than he was. Alarik knew his strength, the Navy. The Navy comprised far more than just that single term could explain however. Strategy and tactics. Physics. Astrogation. Command. The list could go on and on. They were complex skills that few could truly possess.

            "Hm, so likely Ms. Verdelet finds some sort of use for you then." Just as she had recruited him. The only problem is that Valerian was likely more disposable, whether he knew it or not. Those that worked in the shadows could be easily disavowed. "Don't forget the wine. He'll have whiskey, and maybe I will share a glass of it." He wasn't about to let his brother dictate the circumstances, nor attempt the petty attack to provoke him into doing things his way. He sought the higher ground, a battle of wits between the pair ensuing.

            "Were you recruited then, or swept aside to join the Imperials?" He questioned matter of factly, seeking the details concerning Valerian's appointment beneath Celcia's command.

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            • #7
              "Ms. Verdelet? You mean the Director General, right?" He asked quietly, leaning forward with a suggestive smile. Curious that someone recently inducted into the Navy would even be acquainted well enough with someone so high ranking to refer to them as Ms. Verdelet. With a grin that was more meant for himself than his brother, he leaned back into the cushioned chair again. His fingers were pleated together and his elbows were posed at an incline against the wooden arms of the seat. In thoughtful repose, the older Chiss tilted his mouth into his index fingers and watched his sibling from across the table.

              "I believe my conscription was Father's doing. He seemed worried that his initial plan might not work out and he wanted to make sure that I was in good hands, should that happen." He offered in explanation, watching every minute change in musculature on his brother's face to see if his words piqued anything. "Given your experience with the Ascendancy Fleet, I'm sure Ms. Verdelet was kind enough to grant you some special accommodations. Reserved table, suite at the palatine. I should have been more brooding and uptight when we met." Well, you know, if she'd didn't scare the hell out of me.

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              • #8
                "I bet you believe yourself very clever." Valerian acted as if he had discovered some grand secret. Alarik was there to shoot him down. Yes, Celcia and him were close in a sense, but that was not to be derived from his words. "Ms. Verdelet is of sensitive rank, and I do not trust this location enough to refer to her as anything but such a name. So you may stop yourself from reading deeply into my words right there." He played it calm, cool, collected. About everything expected from a Chiss.

                "Good hands, hm?" He smiled finally. "Are you certain he didn't want to just hide you away, as you have apparently been hidden all this time." It was his turn to play, and take jabs, in retaliation for earlier made statements and his intent on perhaps self importance or inflation. "I am certain your lack of composure did nothing to impress her. Regardless, any favortism I am granted is for potential seen in me. She was present for my testing, and instead of moving up with the Acendancy, here I am. That isn't jealousy I hear, is it?"

                The bottle of whiskey was brought, as was his glass of wine, and Alarik reached for the bottle and poured his brother a glass. "Here, you might be needing one right about now, I assume. Allow me."

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                • #9
                  I 'know' I'm clever. He thought, continuing to beam that confident grin at his sibling as he spoke. After the rebuff concerning the Director-General was delivered with all the cold precision expected of someone raised on Csilla, the older Chiss merely raised his shoulders a fraction in a nonchalant shrug. Given the reserved nature of their dining arrangements and the fact that the Director-General probably had this selective establishment on lock-down given its proximity to HQ, he doubted his careless words posed her any threat or worry.

                  His next caustic statement struck a chord within him and that sterling smile wavered for a mere second. The jovial quality to his expression dissipated; his grin still in place but a distinct drop in his brow displayed his annoyance. "Jealous? You know, it's true. I will admit it has always been my dream to.. have a private table in this very restaurant." He quipped in good humor despite the burning desire to punch him right in his smug face that looked entirely too much like their father's. "I'm fine with you inheriting father's legacy, you know? In fact, I couldn't thank you more for being the perfect son. I'd rather be a back-up plan than an automaton that's only function is to impress people like them."

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                  • #10
                    "And such is the lot in life you choose. I am perfectly happy to be who I am. Skilled and intelligent as I am." He stated such things matter of factly. It was both arrogance, and regular confidence, the kind that was backed up through all of his hard work. He did what he did not for their father though, but for his own success. Valerian just lacked that drive. The motivation. He was very different from any other Chiss he knew. Perplexing.

                    "Perhaps I will allow you to indulge your dream, and borrow my table from time to time." It wasn't exclusively his table, but he did have fun with the statement, and it sort of lightened up some of the tension that lingered. They resented each other, but in the end their was little they could do about each other, and neither was truly impeding the progress of the other. So he could allow Valerian to do his thing, while he did his own.

                    He didn't believe him though. His apparent statements of not caring, or being glad to be who he was. That might have been true, but he believe Valerian truly resented him for their opposing relationships with their father, as well as the favortism he garnered. Even Valerian's boss preferred Alarik over him, he imagined. Second fiddle. He had to be jealous. When he wasn't chastizing or mocking though, he really wasn't sure what to say to him. How did one make small talk with the brother they barely knew they had.

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                    • #11
                      "Ten credits says the one who came in first punches that smug look right off his face."

                      "I'll see that bet and raise you another five that they don't say another word to one another for the rest of the evening."

                      "Oh, a wager! I do so love a bet. What are we working with ladies?" Laserra leaned in between the two waitresses currently staking their bets on two Chiss seated within the reserved room. One was instantly recognizable; she'd had a run in or two with Valerian M'adoc at the training facilities, not to mention a slew of missions that saw them teaming up. The broody one seated across from him, however, Laserra had never encountered. She had the most indescribable urge to force his grumpy face into a smile.

                      "Poor Val, he does look a little mad, doesn't he? I think I'll go try to diffuse the situation before we witness the first Chiss fist fight in public history."

                      With that, and with little regard given to the private nature of the room, Laserra sashayed forward until she stood immediately between the two. "Val, fancy seeing you here. Is this a friend of yours?" She asked, turning her cerulean stare upon her friend's table mate.

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                      • #12
                        "I'm so very glad to hear it." He bit out, leaning back in the chair and tamping down the impulse to cross his arms over his chest like a sulky child. In all the years that he'd imagined having a brother, he hadn't anticipated that he would turn out to be an even more scathing clone of their father; a mistake on his part, apparently. This entire situation continued to justify why it was prudent for him to leave the Ascendency behind. Alarik was a sterling example of everything their father wanted him to be, so why bother? He was just some pawn to be shuffled around a holochess board at their convenience.

                        Clerik jumped a measure as Laserra stepped up to their table. Her presence and the pheromones that clung to her person had a way of assuaging his unseemly temper; which, of course, only reared its ugly head where his family was concerned. Immediately, he rose from his seat and ushered the Zeltron down to where he once sat. "Laserra, my brother Alarik. Alarik, this is Laserra Minxene of Imperial Ground Forces. Great, now don't run her off too fast, brother. I'll have the wait staff timing you."

                        "Laserra, I will eagerly await the details of how long you'll be able to stand his company. In the meantime, I take my leave." And, with that, he exited the room, the cantina itself, and made a mental note to never again be in his brother's company for a meal; it did terrible things to his appetite.

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                        • #13
                          Valerian quickly ushered a change in Alarik's company, forcing a woman to sit down across from him and vacating as quickly as he could with all manner of snide last remarks to attempt to smear his image. No time was given to respond, and he gave no added time to attempt to do so. He took up his wine glass, sipping from it as he peered over the rim at his newfound company. It was in that instant the wait staff brought to the table Valerian's order. "Who had the steak?"

                          He sighed, gesturing his hand down to the table in front of him. "I do now, it would seem." He wasn't certain if Laserra, as she was introduced, would be remaining. He had come and planned for dinner alone, but now their was the matter of the drinks that would go to waste. "A fresh glass for the lady. I doubt she wants to apply her lips anywhere my brother's have been." The waitress moved off to retrieve such, silence ensuing until she returned and the woman poured a new glass of wine for Laserra.

                          "You know my brother." He remarked, an obvious statement given he knew the woman's name. It was his first encounter with a Zeltron, though he had heard of her kind before. If she were anything like the stories of her people, he understood why they were found in each others company. He kept his thoughts in his head, and instead gave her at least the opportunity to make her own impression. "So unkind of him to rush off the moment you came to visit him."

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                          • #14
                            Well, this was awkward.

                            Laserra sat in the chair Valerian had formerly occupied, her hands folded contritely in her lap and her eyes directed down to the table's surface as her acquaintance made a very brief, scathing introduction of his brother. She hadn't been able to fit in a single word before he was stomping off, leaving her to raise her confused, sapphire eyes to the Chiss across from her. He didn't look all that bad, handsome and poised. Perhaps, he was a bit stern but Chiss generally were. Valerian seemed to be the exception to that rule.

                            "Family drama, hm? I do not envy you that." She stated, leaning her chin into her pleated fingers which were supported by her elbows that scandalously rested on top of the table. Manners weren't really a thing on Zeltros, no matter how fancy the establishment. "Yeah, we've run a few missions together. Seems like a sweet guy, if a little hot headed at times. And you, are you the exemplar of the Ascendancy?" She asked, taking the new glass from the server and filling it herself. She sliced him a sultry look, incredibly curious to see if her pheromones were capable of thawing some of that ice in his veins.

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                            • #15
                              "No family around to dramatize your life then?" He smiled, sipping at his glass of wine. "What a shame, it adds a certain spice to life." The smile faded, conveying the sarcasm intended for his statement. There was nothing at all entertaining about dealing with his brother, except when he could rile him up, just as he was sure Valerian so wished to break his composure. Perhaps that was the intention of the girl he sat before him, to break his composure. He was intent on making the best of it, because of that.

                              "It would seem so." He answered her question, his head canting to the side in curious thought. "You'll have to forgive me. I never would have expected you to run missions with him. That would imply you are a part of our military? Perhaps a medic?" He knew Valerian was not part of the Navy, which didn't leave many options. In his survey of her, his eyes wandered across her blue dress, made of a material that caught light and dispersed it into a light shine. It complemented her skin color and hair well, mentally confessing that his brother kept attractive company.

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