jump right in and swim until you're free

POSTED: Tue Feb 10, 2015 1:01 am

Trying to get into the character, bear with me! <3

Estella hissed softly as the needle pricked at her finger and she muttered under her breath as she dropped the tiny shell she had been holding onto her lap. "Mon Dieu..." She lifted her finger to her face, and exhaled through her nose as she saw that the needle did not break through the thick pad but nevertheless found herself mildly annoyed at the needle. However, the girl brushed off the feeling of irritation towards the inanimate object and took up the shell once more. It was always difficult to drill the little holes into them without shattering them.

It was another peaceful day, though the cold got to the Butler enough for her to decide that the day was a "lazy day." Estella wouldn't really ever be at rest if she could help it -- not after spending a good portion of her puphood sick and too weak to do anything. So she settled on bundling up in her warmest clothes and sitting on her front porch as she worked on her next batch of jewelry that, yet again, focused on seashells. It was difficult to find more aesthetic material without trading, but Estella always found it challenging in an entertaining way to work with the fragile things, so she was easily occupied at least.

The stained glass bottles that hung in a corner of the porch clanked together methodically in the sea breeze, and she sighed, mostly in contentment and maybe a little boredom, before bringing the needle and seashell close to her and tried again.

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POSTED: Thu Feb 12, 2015 1:42 pm

Valencia carried a pouch full of little trinkets she had found inside of her satchel at all times. Inside were some pretty beads and shells she had gathered over the past few weeks of exploring. Knowing her best friend's affinity for making jewelry, she couldn't help but always look for more things that could be of use to the other female's interests. That was part of being a best friend, always staying in tune and helping her pal to have what made her happy. Though she still felt a pinprick of guilt for how she hadn't shared her recent struggles with alcohol - a struggle that was still very real - she was moving past it and would merely work to be an even better friend. Not that she had been a bad friend before; she had hidden her problem rather well.

"Essie?" she called out when she approached the Butler home, ears perked to make sure her friend was inside before she would open the door. When it was just the two of them, Val didn't feel a need to knock. It was only when Samuel, Viv, Silvia or the parents were home that she felt she should. Otherwise, propriety in that area was not a priority between them.

Her ears raised and she looked at what Estella was making with interest. "Brought you some new stuff I found over the past few weeks." she took out the pouch and held it out to the Butler girl. "What're you making?"

0 points. So excited for this! Thanks for starting. :D

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POSTED: Sun Feb 15, 2015 9:45 pm

No problem~! (301)

The house was quiet during the day when everyone was out doing their own thing around the territory, and to hear a voice break the silence made her perk up, especially when it was her name being called. Estella immediately recognized the sound of Valencia as soon as she heard her, and an automatic smile crept upon her face as she placed the needle and shell on her lap along with her hands as she answered her. "In here!" The Butler was usually a stickler about courtliness, but pomp and circumstance was forgotten when her best friend was concerned and her speech remained relaxed and casual.

She did not move to let her in and remained seated patiently as the Catori let herself in. Estella perked up when the other girl spoke and her smile broadened as she took the pouch from her hand and held it delicately in the palm of her hands. "Thank you, Val." She placed the pouch on her lap and looked back up at her as she was questioned. "I'm not quite sure what I'm going to be doing with these yet... I have enough necklaces and bracelets with seashells to dress everyone in the pack as beach hermits." Those were the easiest to make, simple but beautiful, at least in her opinion.

"Nevermind me, what have you been up to?" Estella imagined herself more down to earth than her friend; she spent her days content but unproductive beyond the duties expected from her. Valencia was more active than her, even becoming a Lady while she remained low in rank. Essie did not mind this at all -- she was proud of her friend. More importantly, she had more interesting things to share with her than herself. Sitting inside and making jewelry wasn't the most exciting of gossip.

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POSTED: Mon Feb 16, 2015 3:16 pm

(000) :D

There were many exceptions that the two girls made for each other that they wouldn't make for anyone else. They were both rather polite, well-mannered canines in general that leaned more toward the proper way of things. With each other, though, the niceties seemed to be unnecessary. Their bond superseded whatever would have been proper otherwise. It just wasn't proper in the relationship between Valencia and Estella.

"Anytime and always." she replied when her friend thanked her for the pouch as she released it. That was always true; her best friend took priority over all else in her life, truly. In fact, if Essie decided she had a problem with the Basil/Valencia relationship, the blue-eyed Catori girl would even surrender that for Estella. Perhaps it was odd to have the strongest relationship in her life with a best friend instead of a love or even a family member, but they had been inseparable since puphood. It wasn't going to change anytime soon.

She wagged her tail. "I'd be happy to be a beach hermit with your jewelry. We'd be the most fantastic group of beach bums ever. Oh, you should save some so when we go to Europe, we can trade them or give them away to friends we meet." ever since they were young, they had talked of going to Europe together. Although adulthood had brought reality scraping its way into their lives, the dream hadn't died. Perhaps it would never happen, but Valencia wasn't willing to release the dream.

"Ah, not too much... except I have something big to tell you." she hoped Basil wouldn't mind... "I ... well, I have a boyfriend now... and it's Basil." Valencia hoped that Estella would support her, but she felt her breath holding anyway in concern as she awaited Essie's response.

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POSTED: Sat Feb 21, 2015 3:12 pm

*GASP* (369)

Estella smiled at Valencia's words and she gave a light laugh at them. Europe was a shared dream they had as children... It seemed so long ago that they declared they would go there one day, but in reality, the Butler was approaching her second birthday. Val's wouldn't be so far off, either, only a few moons after her's. It was strange to imagine that while they were no longer pups making innocent banter, they weren't too old to give up the dream, either. Estella supposed she could still cling to the possibility, no matter how fanciful it may have seemed to others. Anything was possible when it was her and the Catori girl.

"I wouldn't mind giving the pretty ladies of Paris and London a taste of something simpler," she replied lightly with a wag of her tail, waving it as fast as her friend's. She briefly imagined what it would be like to visit the homeland of her parents, as she often had many times before when she was a pup, before she was gently pulled back into the present by Valencia's voice.

She spoke of something "big," and Estella found herself blinking and straightening her back in her seat. For a moment she wondered if her friend was just exaggerating, but something about the way Valencia spoke and the look on her face told Estella that it was certainly something big. So she listened closely and anticipated what she had to share, but she could not expect what was coming for the world.

She blinked again. Basil? Did she hear that right? It took the words a few seconds of sitting in her mind for the realization to hit her: Valencia was courting her brother. A clear look of surprise seized her face and she stared at Val with wide eyes. "Oh," was all she could manage in her state of shock. She was simply blank at first, and after a couple of seconds she broke her own daze with the clearing of her throat. "How -- I mean, when did this happen?" She tried to keep her voice even, but it evident as the look upon her face that she was caught off-guard by this news.

Last edited by Estella Butler on Fri Feb 27, 2015 7:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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POSTED: Wed Feb 25, 2015 4:42 pm

Valencia Catori
Breathed so deep I thought I'd drown
  • Word Count: (000)
  • Date: --
  • Place: --
  • Form: Optime
Dun dun DUN! :D

Valencia knew that there were risks involved with traveling to Europe. That was what kept her feet planted here within the Court instead of traveling to other lands. Not fear, but awareness, which had become more keen since her mother had disappeared. If her smart, capable, beautiful mother could be lost to sea, how could she ever hope to be safe traveling there? Yet she kept the dream alive with her best friend. Together, they could at least dream. Even if they never made it, they could always hope to get there and work toward it. Nothing wrong with a reach goal.

"Oui, show them how the continental ladies do it. It'll become all the rage to dress like us." she replied with a toss of her head meant to convey how very pretty the stateside ladies would be among the European crowd. Although of course, she had no way of really knowing what it was like over there. The most recent information they had was from Essie's own parents who had been here for years, as was evidenced by the almost-two-year-old first litter they had birthed in Souls.

Her breath was released in a soft exhale when her friend reacted. At first, it was just blinking and processing. Then it seemed the truth had sunk in and reality caused a splash of surprise. Val's responding smile was sheepish, her ears flipping back briefly in almost-apology. As if she should have known this was coming and prepared Essie. It wasn't that she had kept it a secret. The big reveal of her feelings had pretty much been just as startling to Valencia herself as it was for Estella.

"Well... I confess, I must have been building up feelings for him over quite some time. I just didn't really realize it. Then I went out there to talk with him about something..." her drinking, the one secret she did hold out from her best friend. "And when I did, it just kind of came about. So we're seeing how things go by dating and seeing how it goes. You're the second one I've told. I told Aithne first, because I needed to go make up with him over that incident before. Remember I told you about my fight with him? So I wanted to resolve that and I told him while I was there... but I wanted to tell you first." she hoped her friend would forgive her for having told someone else first. It wasn't a random someone, anyway, it was her brother.

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POSTED: Sat Feb 28, 2015 10:21 am

excuse the longness i just love this thread ; _; (522)

"Bien sûr." Estella delicately held her face with one of her hands as if she was daydreaming. "We'd be the talk of countries -- 'who are those pretty ladies, with their simple charm,' they would ask, she said, imitating some accent, and then she spoke with modesty, mostly mock humbleness, "And we will answer that we're merely across the 'big pond.'" It was easy to romanticize a visit to Europe, but reality it made hard to seem possible. But it was fun to dream and banter along with Valencia. It was all in good fun.

Joking aside, Estella found herself staring at her friend as she revealed her newest development. She noticed the nervousness in Val's smile and the way she flipped her ears, and immediately the Butler girl tried to smooth over her face and bring down her lifted brows. She was still unsure how she felt -- she was still consumed by the blankness of surprise, waiting to be filled in with explanation, which the Catori soon gave.

Valencia admitted having feelings for her brother for a while, and Essie's mind briefly wandered to the time they were pups and how Basil and her would bicker all the time. That was when they were only kids, of course, but it was hard to imagine them -- especially her brother -- being all mushy. Her mind was drawn back to full attention when Valencia mentioned her brother, and she nodded solemnly when she mentioned the fight. She then expressed that she wanted to tell her first as if she wanted to forgive her for not coming to her first. The girl frowned for a moment at that, as if unhappy that her friend was almost apologizing of all things, and then smoothed her face again.

Estella placed the things that were on her lap on the floor as she got up from the chair and stepped closer to Valencia. "Ce est bon, je comprends." With a small smile she reached out for Val's hands to hold them in comfort with her own. "I'm... just surprised, that's all. You two used to fight all the time as children, and now..." She trailed off for a moment, and then she continued with a cheeky smile. "You tell me if Basil treats you wrong. I'll set him straight." Estella had faith in her friend to handle herself, and she doubted her weak body could take on her brother. She wanted to show that she was okay with this, though no one needed her permission. It was a strange thought... but one she would have to get used to, for her friend's happiness.

She continued smiling for a moment before she became a bit more serious. "Did it smooth things over with Aithne at all?" While she cared about Val's and Basil's relationship, the one the Catori had with her little brother was important as well. At least she was way closer with Aithne than she was herself with Basil. She couldn't remember the last time she had visited him. She felt a little guilty at the thought, but shook it off and focused on the conversation at hand.

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POSTED: Fri Mar 13, 2015 2:12 pm

Valencia Catori
Breathed so deep I thought I'd drown
  • Word Count: (000)
  • Date: --
  • Place: --
  • Form: Optime
Sorry for the delay, I was busy with a weekend away then got swamped at work when I got back. I also <3 this thread, though, omg it feels so good to finally have some real ValEssie interaction!!!

Their dreams had always entwined with each other's, their goals a pair. Though time was making them develop other goals, too, there was always the lingering sense of what they would be together someday. The things they could accomplish and as a pair were infinitely better than the ones they could accomplish if they were alone. It had always been that way, Catori and Butler; Valencia and Estella; Princess and Princess. Though now they were Lady and Chevalier, she had no doubts at all that Essie would find her way soon and make a path that would be forged right alongside Valencia's through the ranking of the pack, too. "Oui, mon ami, we will be fabulous. Talk of the town!" she smiled; it was fun to dream.

There was certainly a bubble of uncertainty in her chest at the thought that Estella wouldn't approve of her relationship with the other female's brother. Such a thing wouldn't keep her from her pursuits, but it would certainly wound the young Catori. She wanted no strife between her and Essie, as their relationship was far longer established and more important than hers with Basil. Especially the romantic blossoming relationship that was growing between her and the Butler male. If she had to pick one or the other at that point, she would have selected Estella though not without some pain on her part.

As usual, her fears were unfounded and her friend seemed to accept the new reality with Estella's accustomed grace. Val smiled and touched her hands to Essie's in appreciation, her tail waving slightly behind her in happiness. It had been a weight on her soul that she was relieved to have lifted from her.

"Ah, I will certainly let you know if he steps out of line. Sometime we should go together to Halifax to visit him and Kofei. I am sure he would like to see you." Essie and Basil were siblings, after all, even if they didn't always get along. From what her beau had told her, Silvia and Vivienne were the ones that visited him regularly. His own littermates were far less frequent.

She nodded at her friend's question about Aithne. "Thankfully, yes. He did break his arm though! Apparently he has been drinking." she said with a slight frown. "He seems so young for alcohol, I remember when he was scarcely to my knee and now he's drinking."

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POSTED: Thu Mar 19, 2015 4:13 pm

It's all okay--I hope everything calmed down! <3 (361)

She could feel the weight being lifted from Valencia as she showed her acceptance of the relationship, and she smiled more softly and touched her hands again in return to Val's. Estella knew she would eventually get over the shock of the situation—perhaps it was annoyance she felt towards Basil when they were children that carried into adult that made her confused about how her friend and him could get into a relationship. She hadn't seen him in forever; he could have changed from the crude, rude boy to a proper gentleman for all she knew... Though she doubted that. Immensely.

Easily the Catori suggested that they should visit, and the smile on Estella's face faltered a little but somehow remained on her face. "He might..." Her words trailed off thoughtfully though she kept them light and content.

She didn't believe that he thought much about her. That she did not fault him for, since she did not think about him either. It was not out of spite, but it was simply out of sight and out of mind. She knew Basil had been handling himself well since he left the Court from what others in her family had told her, and she felt no need to visit the brother she wasn't close to to begin with.The idea of visiting him out of the blue after all this time made her nervous. If she visited with Valencia, however, she believed she could do it, partly for her friend's sake as well as her own.

The doggish girl smiled at first when Val spoke, but then her eyes widened in surprise when she continued speaking. Aithne drinking and breaking his arm? "Mon Dieu!" she exclaimed in a hushed voice. Her brother was only a few seasons younger than the two girls, but the Butler shared the images of Aithne as a pup. "Was he drinking during that occasion only or is it something... chronic?" She could barely imagine him drinking, much less an alcoholic. She couldn't imagine anyone in their age group succumbing to such a thing. Ignorance was bliss—she still knew nothing of Valencia's own struggles with alcohol.

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POSTED: Fri Mar 20, 2015 11:59 am

Valencia Catori
Breathed so deep I thought I'd drown
  • Word Count: (000)
  • Date: --
  • Place: --
  • Form: Optime
<3! It has, thank goodness! ^_^

Valencia knew that the relationship was not strong between Estella and Basil. She hoped that she could help fix that. Perhaps the fact that she loved both of them would help bind them together in ways that they weren't right now. Maybe they could at least come to like each other more. Tolerate each other at the very least, since she was planning to spend time with both of them. Someday it would be nice to spend time together with her and Essie's cubs romping together while the parents all chatted nearby. Though that was far in the future, it was an image she couldn't get out of her head. First, of course, she needed to find a beau for Estella.

Her fingers brushed her friend's shoulder reassuringly. "Or not. As much as I would like for you to be friendly with each other, I am not going to force you to like each other." she knew that would be impossible. "We shall see how it goes." her tail waved behind her. They would make it through. She had faith that this story - though certainly not a fairytale - would all end well.

The conversation had shifted to Aithne, though, and that was fine with her. It wasn't her intention to dwell or put a spotlight on the relationship between Basil and Essie, after all. "As far as I know, only the one time, and he said he will not do it again. I worry though. I know alcohol can be... addictive." she lowered her eyes and felt a flush rising to her cheeks when she realized how close to home that hit with her own problems. "I will definitely be keeping an eye on him to make sure it doesn't... escalate." her heart beat a bit faster; she still didn't want to reveal the truth of her own issues to her best friend. Basil knew, Harvey knew. One sort of on purpose, the other by accident.

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