Beltane celebrations continue with games.
"You ever play the saucy version of Truth or Dare? A glorious promise that is never fulfilled…."
After Xaeron is named Baron by Duke Granville, the assembled guests at The Spark surge forward to congratulate him and Sophia on their upcoming wedding. Kaylie asks her why, and warns Sophia to help Xaeron "make good choices". Braum starts chatting with Dr. Sayley, and tries to avoid her attempts to flirt with him by asking Saylie about the Countess Weyer. Is her being here to help Sophia and Xaeron get married truly an act of generosity, or does she have a secret agenda? Weyer can only tell Braum cryptically that the Countess Weyer "is never fully altruistic," but insists she's harmless.
Patches reunites with Braum and Sophia to congratulate the latter on her triumph. Braum gossips about the possibility of Lady Helena moving to Cross' Shadow to become the Countess of the region, but Patches shuts the rumour down immediately: she's already let MacAllistar know how it would look for House Gwydion to make a power play like that. Braum hadn't considered that angle; Patches' news gets both Braum and Sophia's wheels turning….
Patches sets off to make things right with Duke Granville, apologizing to him for being inconsiderate of his time. Now that she's had a taste of nobility, she's beginning to understand some of the pressure placed on nobles. Granville sympathizes, noting that not only do subjects have responsibilities, but lieges do too… sometimes responsibilities that can weigh heavily on them. Patches tells him that she wanted respect: being a commoner had clearly become a limitation to her ambitions, and she was getting frustrated "being told she didn't want title".
Kyoko approaches Sophia to congratulate her as well, agreeing to be a member of her wedding. Privately, apart from Braum, she's much more effusive, overjoyed for her friends. Sophia goes to speak with Countess Weyer, who is shocked to hear that Sophia is considering becoming the Countess of Cross' Shadow herself! She isn't against the idea by any means, especially when Sophia pitches it as a way of recruiting "mortal scouts", but asks whether the sidhe has considered the ramifications? Weyer is lucky to "have a Spencer, but Sophia wouldn't have one in Xaeron: someone needs to administer the day-to-day of a County, and it sure as heck won't be the adventurous Sophia! Will it?
Weyer is on-hand to greet a new arrival, a gloriously beautiful piskie with short, pointy blonde hair and a twinkle in his eye. He introduces himself as Faux, although he and Weyer seem to disagree on its pronunciation. It turns out he was "traded" from the Sapphire Eye to Heart's Light to serve Duke Granville, "equal to a masterwork clock and a promotion," he jokes. He is intent on learning as much as he can about Ignite and about the Duchy of Many Rivers, while Patches reveals her new mechanical shoulder to Duke Granville in the hedge maze.
A game of I Never is proposed, and everyone joins in! The game pokes fun at most of the assembled guests in one way or another, and eventually becomes a game of Truth or Dare. Braum swandives naked into the pond; Patches admits to wanting to join the Golden Braid; Sophia and Xaeron paint on the nude bodies of Kyoko and Claude; the Countess Weyer admits to having once wanted to get rid of the concept of Houses entirely; and she, in return, dares the Duke Granville to attend the renewal of vows between Zistor Flexx and Talus. Well played, the Duke mutters. Weyer ends up dancing with (and scoring) Pasebakhaenniut the Garou, Braum takes Fala to a hut, and Patches gets intimate with the new arrival, Faux….