Kiara smiled as Jared and Melinda sat with them. "Aww. Well I hope you get better soon. Spring is around the corner, so cheer up!" She said though turned to Torix as Melinda questioned him. She raised an eye brow as Torix explained why he called them over. As the queen, she had never heard anything about a situation like that, and given that he was talking to Jared and Melinda she knew that Torix wasn?t being serious, not to mention all the waterways were frozen. He was however putting on quite a good show, though due to the reaction of everyone else, the show was cut off and Torix came clean.

"Dusk, I know it may be hard for you, but this is the dining table. And we do have guests. There is such a thing as proper etiquette." She had told him. She didn't know how many times she would have a conversation with Dusk about etiquette. Seriously, he seemed more of child sometimes.

Kiara then turned her attention to Jared and Melinda. "Relax. We may king and queen, but we can also have friends and enjoy their company once in a while." She said softly, taking yet another bite of Torix's food while he sipped on his drink.

Jared rolled his eyes and breathed a sigh of relief and placed the Faolis Volume down on the table, the magical Elvish letters shining outwards from the ancient parchment. He picked up his chocolate as he sat down again. Holding hands again with Melinda, he couldn't help but smile. "Well, you were kidding, weren't you? Sorry for my inappropriate reaction, Sire, but for a moment there, I thought you were truly serious. I mean, why would you send just two people, just barely adults now, to fight an entire fleet of barbarian ships? It is quite stupid, I agree." He chuckled a bit to himself as he raised his cup to his lips. After a couple of sips, he tried to strike up conversation with the royal family.

"So, what have all of you been up to lately?"

OOC: Hope this is good. I couldn't really think of anything else to do.

"Excellent attempt at humor, brother, hopefully it isn't reflective of your abilities in running our kingdom," Dusk said, giving the king some applause and a smile in his direction. once finished with that, Dusk leaned forward enough to snatch his hot chocolate from the table, leaning back again once his task was complete and sipping at the mug in his hands loudly. He continued to do so up until Kiara started to reprimand him for his behavior, as he knew she probably would. "Ah, yes, how rude of me," he acknowledged," I shall deal with that forthwith, sister-in-law." With a certain level of care, Dusk brought his feet down from off the table, setting his drink down in their place. He then reached into the voluminous confines of his bathrobe sleeves and pulled out from either arm a coaster, which he placed upon the table. Finally, he took up his drink again and set his feet down upon the coasters, clearly pleased with himself. "There you go, my most radiant majesty, I sorely hope I did not offend too greatly with my uncouth manners," he said as he favored his sister-in-law with a smile.
      Before Kiara could respond to Dusk, Jared spoke up, asking a question that Dusk loved answering whenever it came up. "I for one, my good blacksmith, have been working on this hat," he explained, pointing to the top hat upon his head, "It is- how should I put it?- my crowning achievement in head wear." Dusk beamed at Jared, clearly pleased with his pun.

Torix smiled dryly and chuckled at Dusk's comment, "Ha ha, agreed brother." He half turned toward Jared and Melinda while still addressing Dusk, "While I do love a fine joke I fear I may not be the best at crafting them, so there's no need to apologize." He kept his eyes on the royal couple's visitors, distinctly ignoring his brother's behavior, "To be honest though, I've heard plenty of stories about young, stout heroes going up against insurmountable odds and emerging victorious. Perhaps I'll keep your names in mind if I ever need help saving the world." He smiled into his drink and winked at Jared, taking a long quaff before replying to the blacksmith's query, "Personally I've been rather busy keeping up with all the petitions and requests coming through. Everything from more food for the poor to lower taxes for the rich; the usual. As well my lovely darling here claims winter is ending so there are preparations to be made regarding that as well. All of it very time consuming, so it's nice to stop and relax for a bit with some friends." He smiled and tipped his head at the young pair before regarding his brother curiously, "And what's all this about a crown? Did you make me a present Dusk?" He grinned.

Kiara smiled at Jared. "Not to worry, Jared." She started. "Why would we send any number of our army there, when the queen has elemental water capabilities? Our kingdom is perfectly safe from any threat that would come from the seas." She finished with a slight nod as she took a sip from Torix's hot chocolate, even though she had her own. 
She glared at Dusk as he once again set his feet up on the table, and while he answered Jared's question, She turned to the King with the same look, almost reprimanding him for even having a brother. Dusk is the high prince, brother to the king. He should have more class, manners, and respect than what he does.

The Queen beamed as Torix mentioned that spring was coming. "While I do like some snow, this winter has gone on for too long. I do hope the gods are more kind to us. I don't know why this winter was so harsh. Though with the coming spring, we can open up our farm lands, as well as the harbour for merchants and fishing." She said, already feeling warmer from the thought of nicer weather. "We just have to wait a little longer, but spring is in the air." She said, now picking up her own mug of hot cocoa. She turned to her brother-in-law. "If Torix is getting a new crown, I want a new one too." She teased, with a slight giggle.

She looked from Dusk to the other couple. "What about you two? What have you been up to? Staying warm, I do hope." She said to them.

Dusk smiled at his brother and sister-in-law, finally taking his feet down from the table and instead placing his elbows on the coasters. He steepled his fingers and looked at the two of them through his digits.
      "I'm afraid that's not quite what I meant, my dear royal couple. No, I was more referring to my own hat that I am currently warring," Dusk said, tapping his top hat with his right hand. "You see, this hat is an engineering marvel, something that is quite useful to no one save me." With a small flourish, he produced a small metal crank from his right hand sleeve, waving it slightly so as to show it off to the occupants of the room. Then, with a careful hand, he inserted the crank into the small hole in his hat. The crank fit into the hole perfectly, stopping with a soft metallic click. Then, with a massive grin on his face, he started turning the crank. At first, nothing seemed to happen, but after the fourth turn, some small resistance was met by the crank, and from then on as the crank turned, the hat raised up. The hat split at just above the crank, making a perfectly even split between brim and hat as it went up. A cylinder of fabric was visible within the opening, slowing expanding as the upper half of the hat moved. Once the top hat was near double it's previous height, the inner fabric snapped outwards and filled in the space that the apparent mechanism within the hat had created, leaving Dusk with a perfectly formed, double tall top hat.
      "That, my dear brother and sister, is what I have created," he said as he returned the crank to it's previous place in his sleeve. He then turned to look at Jared and Melinda, asking, "Yes, how have you two been fairing?" adding to Kiara's question.

Torix chuckled and leaned an elbow on the table with his drink in one hand as he watched his brother's display. His eyes followed the crank, as was expected of him as an audience member, and he sipped his cocoa as Dusk inserted it into his hat. He snickered at the ridiculous figure Dusk cut, cranking his hat like he was charging his brain. His snickering died off soon enough though as Dusk's hat started to slowly grow taller.

Torix's eyes followed the hat's trip toward the sky, his mouth slightly agape and drink halfway to his mouth. When his hat reached full height and filled out with a soft 'fup' Torix just stared at the piece of fashionable machinery. After a good minute of gaping he set his drink down and composed himself, looking pensive. "Alright… Now, as the king I have to ask why this technology was applied to a hat and not, say, a bridge, or a tower... and then as your brother... I have to ask if you can make my crown do that too."

Jared and Melinda were quite startled when Dusk demonstrated the mechanism for his hat. In Jared’s case, he had never seen anything of the sort and was absolutely speechless; Melinda was just plain bewildered.
Turning his gaze away from Dusk’s peculiar and distracting contraption, he turned to the Queen. “Well, if you want a new crown, Milady, you need look no further than me, right?” There was an obvious modesty to his voice, a lack of pride or boasting. “No one else besides me in this kingdom could manipulate Dwarven metal, and remember, I made your original crowns. But why want a new pair? Is Dwarven metal not good enough? I spent countless hours bending and forging that metal to make those crowns what they are. If Dusk has any free time, maybe he can help me making the brand-new crowns! And not to be rude, but I'm nearly out of Dwarven metal!”

Jared took a deep sip of his hot chocolate before continuing. “Yeah, we’ve been staying warm, too. The Faolis Volume has a special spell in it that allows me to conjure up magic fire that burns for an unlimited period of time until put out by the reverse effect of the same incantation. It’s a very handy spell, and it’s kept us warm and cozy for this whole season. What about you? How have you kept your body temperatures in control?”

Kiara looked to Jared. “Relax. We were only playing around. I for one love the crowns that you have already made.” She said softly with a smile. “It is a case over which brother’s head piece is better than the other. And I don’t think they’ll settle that one for a while.” She giggled.

“I must admit that heating a whole castle can be pretty tricky. But with Narvis’ fire talent, we get by. As long as there is always someone close by to make sure the fire doesn’t go out, the castle stays at a nice temperature. But we don’t need to worry too much about now. Spring is on its way.” She too took a sip of her hot chocolate. “No more trying to balance the books to find funds for salt and food. I just hope the growing season is good to us this year. I don’t think we can survive another winter like this without a good growing season and harvest.”

Dusk listened to his brother’s question with a small smile, his fingers still linked before him. Upon the conclusion of Torix’s question, Dusk gave him a full smile and then took his hat from his head, placing it on the table before him.
“I’m afraid that a bridge or tower would be rather difficult to have this technology applied to them, dear brother,” Dusk began to explain. “You see, this hat can utilize the mechanism due to its extremely light weight, allowing me to use very small, clockwork gears and very light metals and woods. However, if applied to a tower or to a river spanning bridge, it would simply be too much. The sheer increase in size required would, in itself, cause problems, not to include the fact that bridges and towers are often made of stone and oak. The end result is that I would need to greatly redesign the original blueprints to make it in any way effective, and it would cost a great deal more resources and simply overcomplicate the structure on a whole, resulting in a great loss in efficiency in either of the structures,” Dusk stated, taking on an almost lecturing tone, one that was fairly ruined due to the comical, double tall top hat before him, the bathrobes that he was wearing, and the fact that he was noisily sipping hot chocolate. “As to your crown, I’m afraid it wouldn’t work as well, since it’s made of metal, adding more complications than necessary to the machinery once more,” he pointed out. “Could I do it? Of course, with time and effort. Will I? I feel it would just be far simpler for you to switch to a jewel encrusted top hat, making the work far easier on me,” He finished, taking up his top hat again and placing it upon his head at a jaunty angle. This angle of jauntiness, coupled with the uncommon height and weight of his hat, resulted in it falling off his head backwards, crashing to the ground. Dusk simply smiled all the way through the hat-tastrophe, eventually getting up so he could reach down and grab his hat once more.

(OOC) sorry I've been gone so long.

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