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Posted by: jacqueline monroe Apr 8 2015, 09:43 AM
For as long as she could remember, the Palace Gardens were Jaq’s haven, her refuge from the exhaustion of Court and the nonsense within the walls of the Palace. There was something about the color green that called to her, accented with the wild array of colors that gave Wonderland her uniqueness. Nature wasn’t as bright in London, the humans’ parks a poor imitation at the microcosms of the world tucked into the corners of the Palace Gardens. It was here that she felt most connected to her roots, pun be damned, and to her homeland. Alice’s world never quite matched Wonderland in any aspect. To Jacqueline, Wonderland would always be superior in every way.

At the moment, she was leaned against one of the ropes holding up a swing she’d put in long ago on one of the trees that didn’t mind a little extra weight. It was in one of the back corners of the Gardens, far enough away that the Palace didn’t seem large and intimidating as usual. (In fact, it was quite distant for the Gardens themselves were extensive and Jaq had always made sure their upkeep was a priority for the household and grounds staff.) The early afternoon sun filtered through the tree leaves, a soft wind rustling them enough to make the white noise melodic. Her fingers loosely gripped the ropes, temple resting against the course material, as she dug her toes into the dirt and drifted in small swings back and forth.

Rare were these moments of quiet, of peace and solitude and clarity to be herself. She’d long been used to the public eye – having her corner of the Gardens was evidence enough – and she absolutely loved where she was in life, but there were some days, rare days, when it was too much. She would wake early, a taste in her mouth for escape. Sometimes she would beg off responsibilities and convince her husband to stay in bed with her for a majority of the day, only attending to crucial matters in the evening. Other times, like on this particular day, she would take a Card and hide out somewhere, lost in thought and writing as the day slipped on. Not always did she prefer to be completely alone, though.

Before departing the castle, she’d sent word to Tempest to meet her around late lunch, knowing she’d likely be desiring company by that point. As the time approached nearer, she’d reached the end of her solitude, and quietly eagered for the Bandersnatch’s arrival. Friend was a relative term to Jaq, rarely used in her vocabulary; with Tempest, however, it was close to describing the affection she felt for her. And so she waited, eyes trained on her toes pointed against the dirt and ears acutely aware of her surroundings, ready for and anticipating Tempest.

i’m slipping out of reach now people talk to me & all their faces blur but i got my fingers laced together & i made a little prison & i’m locking up everyone who ever laid a finger

Posted by: tempest mirakel Apr 19 2015, 06:18 PM
Tempest had been lounging around in her room, as she was known to do when bored. She'd not been dressed, much to the messengers' surprise and pleasure, if she read his expression properly. Which she had, once she'd pulled him in and pounced. What better way to get rid of the boredom than find a play thing. He'd only protested for a few seconds, but that wasn't unusual. They put up a front, pretending they didn't want her, when she could see it in their eyes they did. The heady mixture of fear and excitement that radiated from them.

He'd been a handsome man, especially once she'd stripped him of his clothing. She had her way with him, leaving her mark in teeth and nails, then sent him packing. He'd been good enough that she'd not left him broken, which said something. He'd been so sated, that he hadn't protested the shredded remains of his uniform she'd stuffed back in his arms. It wasn't until she was ushering him out the door that he remembered to give her the message. She'd been summoned by the Queen. She laughed, watching as he ducked his nude form around corners, trying to avoid being seen in nothing but bare skin marked by her teeth and nails.

She showered and dressed, putting on a simple gown of black material that was fitted in the torso and flowed down to the floor. It was low cut and had thick straps. Over it was a layer of black lace that moved up her neck to be high-collared and long sleeved. A choker of matching black fabric with a tear-drop ruby hanging from the center was secured around her neck. She didn't bother with her hair or make-up. She never wore make-up unless the Queen insisted on it. Her hair hung in damp fiery curls around her shoulders. She contemplated shoes before deciding against them. She much preferred to be barefoot if she could. If the Queen protested, they'd just summon someone to get shoes for her.

She made her way to the gardens, and though she wasn't told where in the vast Palace Gardens the Queen was, she knew Jaq well enough to find her. A mixture of scent and intuition helped her locate her with ease. Tempest didn't really have friends, but if she did, Jaq would likely be one of them. She was one of the few on the list of individuals she respected and whose company she enjoyed.

She even felt a small smile lift her lips at seeing her. She let the smile fade before making her announcement. "Sorry for the delay my Queen, I got...distracted. Though, it's not entirely my fault as it the message wasn't delivered until after I was done playing." she shrugged as she moved to perch herself beside the Queen. She was not ashamed of what she did, in fact, Tempest wasn't familiar with the emotion of shame. So it never really came into play.

Big man tells you where to go * Tell 'em it's good * Tell 'em okay * Don't do a goddamn thing they say

Posted by: jacqueline monroe May 18 2015, 07:45 PM
Jaq rose to stand as Tempest approached, the white and red skirts of her dress brushing against her ankles. The grass was cool under her bare feet and she smiled, pleased to see the choker resting in the hollow of Tempest’s throat. It’d been a gift long ago, when Jaq first ascended the throne — she wanted to make it clear that the Bandersnatch would be better treated during her reign. Under Jaq, there’d be no cages, no parading around of one of Wonderland’s most fearsome creatures. It was pure idiocy, the way Jaq’s sister handled the Bandersnatch. To attempt containment of that which can kill one without thought was to court disaster. Better to understand and empathize with those deadlier than thyself.

Laughing to herself at Tempest’s own lack of shoes, Jaq held out her hands and squeezed Tempest’s in greeting before taking the swing seat she’d been in. “Tea?” she asked, gesturing towards the set-up, throwing in a signal for the Card to start pouring. She waved off Tempest’s apologies. “It’s of no concern to me. This is a social call, not business. Besides, when are you not playing?” Her mouth quirked in the corner and she turned to thank the Card for the tea he handed her.

“Speaking of playing,” Jaq started, letting the tea breathe while fingering the handle of the delicate porcelain cup. She gave Tempest a sidelong glance. “How’s the Red Knight? Word has been getting around that you two are up to your old tricks and treats again.” Kind of understatement, to be truthful. After several household staff had done their daily rounds of evening cleaning, gossip that Tempest and Achilles had gotten it on in the library spread fast enough to knock innocent bystanders over.

It had reached Jaq in under an hour and while it was one of the last things she’d been expecting to hear lately, it was unsurprising. She’d been readying for dinner and two Cards had entered her rooms whispering about it. They were diminutive about sharing what they knew, so she didn’t have many details about it. And part of her was . . . curious, to say the least. It was a weird curiosity, one she didn’t realize existed until she was glancing down at her tea and then back up at Tempest and asking, “Is he . . . really as good as the rumors claim?”

i’m slipping out of reach now people talk to me & all their faces blur but i got my fingers laced together & i made a little prison & i’m locking up everyone who ever laid a finger

Posted by: tempest mirakel May 25 2015, 08:01 PM
Few people could grasp Tempest's hands as the Queen did and not get hit or bit. But the Queen, Jaqueline, was a special being all her own. So instead, she let her squeeze her hands and even returned the gestures gently. She smiled and took the seat at the base of the tree where the Queen's swing hung, smiling and nodded at the offer of tea, as she made herself comfortable as the grass. She preferred to sit at the base of the tree, as the feel of the ground beneath her was more comfortable. It was something that remained of her animal nature.

Tempest raised an eyebrow at the statement regarding it being an social call. She made herself comfortable, fluffing the skirt around her a bit as she watched the Card pour tea. She watched with amusement as their hand shook a bit handing her a cup. "Did you use honey?" she asked, her voice low. A quick nod was her response and she gave a firm nod herself, sipping at the tea. She smirked, "Not bad." was her only response before turning her attention fully to Jaq.

She smiled slightly at the question of if she ever didn't play. "Fair point. I find it's the best way to pass the time when one is bored." she shrugged. She sipped at her tea but snorted softly at the mention of Achilles. "Gossip moves quickly." She knew they hadn't been discrete. Hell, she hadn't even cared about the mess they'd left behind for the staff to clean. They hadn't destroyed anything of importance, so that was her being considerate.

"Tricks and treats...interesting way to put it." she murmured as she sipped at her tea and leaned back against the trunk of the tree. "I don't usually stop to ask how he is doing. Words aren't really...our thing." she responded nonchalantly. "Well...words of a friendly conversational sort." she amended. They often traded words, but not often were they pleasantries.

She glanced over at Jaq, surprise plain in her eyes at the Queen's inquiry. Her surprise turned to amusement as she sipped her tea. She thought about her response. Frankly, if she were to be completely honest with herself, yes. He was phenomenal, one of the best she'd ever had. "I'd never lie to you." she began, giving a slight dramatic pause. "But I'm wary of speaking frankly in front of those who might gossip." she glanced pointedly at the Card. "So I'll preface my response with this," she made eye contact with the Card and held it. "I know your face, I know where to find you...if my words are repeated, know without a doubt that I will find you. And that I will take whatever punishment the Queen sees fit to bestow on me for what I do to you. Are we understood?" She watched as the Card swallowed and nodded.

Tempest smiled, "My threats are never idle. Remember that well." she turned her attention back to Jaq. "Apologies, but I would never have what I'm about to say reach Achilles. His ego is already beyond what it should be." she rolled her eyes at the thought of how he would react if he knew. "But be completely truthful. I wouldn't be surprised if the rumors didn't quite describe things properly." she smirked. "He's got talents and tricks that few men would even think possible." She wasn't sure how much detail Jaq wanted. Tempest wasn't shy about her sex life, it was part of the reason she was such a frequent source of rumors.

Sipping her tea she glanced at Jaq, a knowing smile playing in her eyes. "Is there anything specific you are curious about?" she asked, her tone nonchalant. She'd answer anything Jaq answered and with however much detail she wanted.

Big man tells you where to go * Tell 'em it's good * Tell 'em okay * Don't do a goddamn thing they say

Posted by: jacqueline monroe Jul 24 2015, 02:44 PM
Jaq swirled the contents of her teacup idly with her small finger as Tempest got comfortable and received her own tea. All of Jaq's closer friends tended to be dangerous, which made sense if one took a look at her choice in husband -- she was, in a way, attracted to the dark and foreboding, similar to the sister who'd one day decided she preferred to run her fingers through blood over water. The Card in attendance was nervous, the teapot clanking against the tray noisily. Max needed to actually pay attention to his Wonderland duties, Jaq thought with a twisted mouth. She straightened her mouth and turned back to Tempest.

"It's Court. People die to get away from gossip, and even then they're plagued by idle chatter," she said. Sip of tea. Pushed the small handle with a finger. The cup turned in the saucer. Her head tilted at Tempest's admitting to not really talking to Achilles. Funny. It seemed all Jaq and Achilles did was talk. But maybe that was for a reason. "I'm not surprised," she said truthfully. "He's guarded deep past his armor. I have a hard time getting a reaction out of him--" (Lie, but Jaq wasn't giving up her secret ability to unseat Achilles quicker than someone besting him in a jousting match.) "--and I'm beginning to think he doesn't talk to anyone, not even himself."

She smirked as Tempest threatened the Card. Watching people exert power over them was always entertaining; as far as Jaq knew, the King gave free reign to those with enough status to use and bully the Cards as they saw fit, and while some people took advantage of it, not enough did. "No need to apologize. Achilles has taken it upon himself to throw barbs at them every so often." She sipped her tea as Tempest said a whole lot without revealing anything. An eyebrow arched up her forehead and she nodded, setting her teacup down as daintily as she could, her head tilting slightly to the side.

"Rumors never do capture the whole picture," she said diplomatically, pressing her lips together as she stared at Tempest's choker, the one Jaw herself had bequeathed unto the creature upon gaining her human form. If only Jaq's sister could see her prized beast now. After moment, her gaze flicked up to Tempest's. "You could paint that picture for me," she said, knowingly, words thick with meaning.

i’m slipping out of reach now people talk to me & all their faces blur but i got my fingers laced together & i made a little prison & i’m locking up everyone who ever laid a finger

Posted by: tempest mirakel Jul 27 2015, 11:13 PM
Tempest grinned at the sound of the fragile dishware clanging together, the Card's hands trembling. She was willing to bet that Jaq alone intimidated the moron, but to have both the Queen and the Bandersnatch within reach of ones throat...well, no wonder the little bugger trembled. The smell of fear wafted on the breeze as it ruffled Tempest's hair. She closed her eyes and inhaled, a low throaty growl tickled in her throat as her eyes opened and zeroed in on the Card.

"If I'm to sit here with that creature oozing fear in such delightful waves, it might be best to feed me. I did work up something of an appetite." she licked her lips as she leaned forward, dragging her nails along the boots of the Card. Not enough to cause damage, at least physically. The Card's shaking intensified and it made Tempest laugh. "Careful little mouse, you tremble like that and it makes me want to give chase." she rose to her knees in a very feline, predatory manner. "I'll give you a choice, find me food or become my food." she growled, a dark smile pulling at her lips.

It didn't take any time for the Card to choose to find Tempest food. But not before ensuring the Queen had enough tea to last until they came back. Tempest sat back down, setting her cup on the grass and laying back to relax on the soft earth. Laughter rumbled her chest as she grinned, rather pleased with herself. "Oh, I'm sure Achilles has his fun with the little darlings..." she rolled her eyes. It wasn't that she didn't like that Achilles tortured the Cards, actually she found it a bit of a turn on. What annoyed her was being compared to him.

Tempest ran her fingers over grass, kneading it as a cat would but clenching and releasing the blades of grass between her fingers. She stared up at the leaves of the tree, watching them move. "I don't like talking blatantly in front of them. I don't trust Cards." she stated. It was part of the reason she had sent the Card off. But only part, she was hungry and tormenting the Card has brought her pleasure.

She turned her head to face Jaq, saw her eye the jewel at Tempest's throat. "I usually only want one of two reactions out of reaction but it has two ending places. He's easy enough to goad into a fight. As armored as he is, he is a prideful man. He is a man, after all. And all men have weakness." she paused in thought. "I've never really had a conversation with him, but I have been curious. I tried on one occasion or another, but really it's just so easy to get his hackles up and he's rather arousing when he's angry." she grinned, a slight flutter in her stomach at the image of him fired up with anger.

"That's what makes him so...delicious." she licked her lips. Jaq wanted a picture painted, Tempest would oblige her Queen. "My favorite things is to catch him when he least suspects it...the less he's wearing the better. He has such lovely skin, such dazzling scars. He's very tight, you know. Muscles moving and rippling beneath that firm skin. I like the scars...especially the ones I've given him." she grinned, turning her head to face up again. "I do believe he is my favorite plaything...though I'd never admit to that. But no one has the stamina or dark streak that he has." she purred softly. "Oh, when his anger is high and his eyes are almost glowing with the fire. With that look that says he wants to either slit your throat or screw you silly...but hasn't made up his mind. That's the look I crave. No other man has yet to match it, or even come close." She sighed.

It occurred to Tempest she'd never spoken of Achilles in such flattering words. At least, in her mind they were flattering. Nor had she ever been so honest about the way he could make her feel. But her Queen had asked, and Tempest would never hold back from her Queen. So she continued.

"Sex with him is like running full speed through the dark when you know you are near the bluffs. You know the edge is there, you can sense death on the precipice, and yet you keep running. Adrenaline fills every cell mixed with such exquisite pleasure and pain..." she smiled. "He gives as good as he gets, and takes as good as he gives." She paused, imagining their last encounter. Her blood running down his lips as he grinned at her, his hands tight, leaving bruises on her skin as her nails pierced his flesh. "It's raw...animal...vibrant and always a surprise." she laughed at that last revelation. "I suppose that's one of my favorite things...he can always surprise me. I'm so rarely surprised by anything...yet, each time he finds a way to delight me and leave me pleasantly surprised." she stopped, frowning as that thought played with her. There was a fondness that tinged it, something she didn't like about the fondness. She shrugged it off, deciding to ignore it. It was a passing thing, happened at times when reminiscing.

She glanced at Jaq, "Did I paint a good enough picture? Or do you want more detail?" she asked, a knowing grin playing her lips. She didn't mind talking to Jaq about whatever she wanted it.

Big man tells you where to go * Tell 'em it's good * Tell 'em okay * Don't do a goddamn thing they say

Posted by: jacqueline monroe Aug 17 2015, 05:12 PM
Jacqueline was careful to slowly finish her tea without showing that Tempest's words had gotten to her -- and Jaq had definitely been got by them. Her body blazed with heat; it took every ounce of willpower she had to set the cup and saucer down in the grass when it was finished without shaking. Tempest sounded exactly as Jaq would have long ago, back when her husband could still touch her without looking like he'd rather be anywhere but with her. She didn't doubt that Achilles had a dark and deathly edge to him but part of her wanted to argue that he couldn't possibly be the darkest, not when there'd been nights with Maixent, early on, when Jaq was sure one wrong move would be the end of her. It had been thrilling and terrifying wondering if his hand would slip up her neck a fraction of an inch and tighten that side of too much.

But it'd been a long time since they'd even had a meaningful conversation that it was all distant memories now.

The urge to find out just how far she could push Achilles tricked out along her fingers; she had to twist them together to keep it within her. That was what she did after all, push and push and push to only accept in those who didn't break. She wondered if she'd quietly pushed Max too far and that was why he seemed so hung up on memories of London instead of focusing on the present with her. Achilles was still something of an enigma to Jaq, and she was suddenly curious to see where his breaking point lay. She nodded slowly as Tempest spoke, weaving the portrait of a man Jaq felt wholly unprepared to learn about.

"It sounds . . . intriguing," she said slowly once she was able to find her voice and gather her words. "He does, I mean." The back of her neck was hot. She didn't bother hiding her smile. "Though nothing you've said sounds nothing out of the ordinary for him, which doesn't surprise me. I've always been of the mind that Achilles never took off his bloodthirsty armor. It would be . . . curious to see if one could." She looked straight to Tempest again. The Card still wasn't back and she wanted to know if pursuing this . . . avenue would be worth her time. "Though I'm quite sure I don't have the whole picture yet," she added, her tone confirming that she knew exactly what she was saying.

i’m slipping out of reach now people talk to me & all their faces blur but i got my fingers laced together & i made a little prison & i’m locking up everyone who ever laid a finger

Posted by: tempest mirakel Sep 27 2015, 04:13 PM
Tempest watched Jaq carefully, watched the woman maintain complete control over her physical appearance, despite the heat Tempest could smell radiating off of her. If it weren't for Tempest's keen senses, she would have though her words hadn't even phased the Queen. Yet it was the aspects of the human body that others couldn't percieve easily, that told another story. Nonetheless, it was this complete control that gained her respect. The woman didn't even blush, though Tempest could hear her blood roaring.

She turned her eyes back to the sky, wiggling in the grass much like a cat would. She laughed as Jaq did as she had suspected. Her voice, controlled and only showing the mildest of curiosities, inquired as to whether there was more. She rolled on her stomach and faced her Queen, cocking her head to the side as she watched her. "Do you want size and girth? Or more detailed exploits? Is it the how? Or the why that intrigues you? Or the man himself?" she placed her chin her her hands, her elbows holding her up. "I'll tell you whatever you wish. I'd never hide anything from you. So ask away." she offered.

It was a bit rude to play with her Queen true, but it was hard to resist. Her Queen's curiosity switched on her own. She wanted to know why Jaq was so curious about Achilles. It's not like the Queen couldn't have him if she wanted. Despite being wed, she had now doubt the beautiful Queen could have any man she wanted. So why Achilles? What was it about the Red Knight that intrigued her Queen so much?

The questions she asked would give Tempest a better idea of what was going on in the Queen's mind. She began to wonder if it was more than idle curiosity.

Big man tells you where to go * Tell 'em it's good * Tell 'em okay * Don't do a goddamn thing they say

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