Andras & Vera
-At Some Point During the Festivities-
Andras timidly stepped up to the front of Vera's house. It was not unlike the gates of the underworld itself, Andras a wayward soul wandering to a certain and eternal doom just beyond. But she had no choice. She had resolved to come to Vera as her last resort.
The day of the Rhean Ball had come, and Andras had nothing to wear. She was hoping that something usable would show up in the Root, but alas. The closest thing she had was a card that summoned a lion, which would turn heads at the ball, but not in the way she wanted. She had received help from Vera before, so she had no choice but to try her luck again. After all, they were friends... Vera would gladly help out a friend, right?
Andras's stomach turned as she readied her phone to tell Vera she was outside and needed some help. Though it was slightly unpleasant, she vastly preferred her uneasiness over clothing to the last few week's true, heart-stopping stress. She nodded to herself, thinking 'I've survived much worse. This is nothing, now!' and sent the message.
Now she just had to wait.
Vera stood in her room, looking over the outfit she'd be wearing to the ball. It was an elaborate get-up, totally inappropriate for a high-class function. She also loved it for that reason. It had all started when she heard that a few people had confused "masquerade" with "costume party." She had then gleefully and maliciously spread that misinformation. It wasn't hard. Twas the season, after all.
As a vigilante, or one who associated with them, she could even claim to know people who knew Liselotte, as a few of their number were also St. Laurel's students. She'd spun it that not only did she want to use it as a fund-raiser, but as a source of levity in light of recent events. That was her favorite part of the trick. In misleading people, she'd actually made Lise look better. Now she could either roll with it and accept the free publicity, or make a big scene and look like a spoiled brat.
Either way, Vera would be amused.
And if it blew back on her? Vera didn't care. Everyone already thought she was a bitch, only rivaled by Ria, and she didn't have friends to begin with.
Well, with perhaps one exception.
Her phone buzzed, announcing the arrival of Andras.
. . .
The door would eventually open for Andras, but it would be an unfamiliar sight before her. It was a girl with short, black hair cut tight to her head.
"Well, well, well, look who it is," the girl smirked, content to let the seconds tick by. "I bet you don't even recognize me. I'll give you a hint." She leaned forward and put her lips next to Andras's ear. "Your butt looked great in those shorts I bought you." Vera pulled back, laughing giddily. "Yeah, I did my hair and everything. I'm going all out! Now come on, we need to get you ready, your outfit just will not do! Did you even try?!"
Andras's heart sank when someone she didn't quite recognize answered. She specifically had messaged Vera instead of knocking because she didn't want to awkwardly have to talk to someone else. Her mind raced, wondering if it was a sibling, cousin... Mother?
She didn't feel any better when it turned out to be Vera, because Vera managed to find a way to reveal herself in a way that left Andras embarrassed rather than herself. "L-Leave my butt out of this!" Andras stuttered, flushing. She subconsciously grabbed at the hem of her skirt, even though she wasn't even wearing the aforementioned shorts at the moment. It was a compliment, but it ended up scattering Andras's thoughts all the same; Why was Vera looking at her like that anyway? In fact, did other people at the club also think that? She didn't have time to think about those thoughts, or she'd end up freezing in place.
She gathered herself and continued. "And I did try, but the Root wasn't providing me any formal wear at all, and you've got a lot of clothes, so I figured... I could borrow something nice..." Andras stared down as her voice trailed off, adopting a meek position. She didn't plan to be playing the "defenseless maiden" card so quickly, but Vera managed to rout her forces on the first attack.
"Formal wear? Don't be an idiot, it's a costume party! You need a costume!" Vera grabbed her wrist and dragged her inside. "And don't tell me it's not. I said it's a costume party and so it is, regardless of what that stuck-up princess says! I already got dozens of people in on it!"
. . . Earlier. . .
"I... I don't like it. It seems mean," Wolf argued.
"Oh for fuck's sake! Just wear that ceremonial armor of yours! That way you look the part, but if Lise sees you she'll think you're just representing your family or something!" Vera scoffed and rolled her eyes.
"That's... not a bad idea, actually..." Wolf mumbled under his breath.
"Of course it isn't!"
. . .
"Trust me, this is gonna be way more fun!" Vera once more insisted. "So what do you think? You wanna be a dark sorceress? Dashing rogue? Witch?" Vera grinned deviously. "Sexy kitten? Ooh, maybe a naughty police officer. I'll let you put me in cuffs." She winked with a lecherous chuckle. "And yes I have cuffs. Don't ask questions you don't want the answer to."
"A costume party? But isn't a masquera-" Andras barely got to say anything before Vera gave her reasons, and grabbed Andras's hand.
Andras had to shake her head at Vera's suggestions. "I don't want ANYTHING that can be described with 'sexy!' This is a school party, isn't it?!" She stepped away from Vera, trying to regain some ground in the conversation. "Of all of those, the sorceress sounds best. But why would you even have the clothes for that?! You don't know anything of the dark arts!" Andras questioned indignantly, as if her own way of life was being called into question.
"Are you sure about that?" Vera crossed her arms and stepped closer to Andras, staring her down. "I bet I could cast a spell on you," she said with a sultry lilt to her voice. She let the moment hang a tick longer before dropping the act for the time being. "But I know you, Alexandria , and I knew you would need me to come to your rescue, so I prepared ahead of time. Also I've gone through more phases than I can count and my wardrobe doth overflow, so we have stuff to work with. And makeup. So much makeup." Vera pointed her finger at the girl dramatically. "No more games, my little demoness! I will forge you into the sorceress you always claimed to be! Or... at least you'll look the part," she said, capping it all off with an apathetic shrug.
Once in Vera's room, she flung open a massive walk-in closet. It was choked to the brim with clothes, hanging from racks, folded on shelves, stuffed into basked, and even old shopping bags. And not so old shopping bags.
"What can I say, my parents piss me off a lot and I choose to let them believe they can buy my love back. Hasn't worked so far, but who am I to disillusion them?" She sighed. "Stuff should be in here somewhere..."
Before long, Andras had various dresses, gowns, and other trappings in various shades of black, purple, and red to choose from.
"Good, now we throw in a big, gaudy amulet or something and you'll be all set..."
Andras cocked her head, thinking about the phases Vera must have went through. 'It feels like she's going through a phase right now, actually...' Andras was a little concerned with the amount of energy Vera was bringing. Maybe she was a fan of the time of year? It was intriguing enough for Andras to ignore Vera's use of her real first name.
Andras dodged the first few lumps of clothing that were tossed from the closet as Vera casually said some fairly sad statements, but a few of the thrown articles of clothing solidly landed across Andras's face.
"Ummm..." Andras thumbed through the clothing, eventually setting some of it on Vera's bed. "You know, I might have an amulet of my own in the Root, if we can't find one in here." Andras's eye settled upon one of the dresses she laid out. "I like this dress with flared sleeves, but it's way too short... Do you have a petticoat or something that would lengthen it?" She held up the black dress, and looked down. "...And it shows off way too much of the chest! Is there supposed to be a blouse under this?!" Andras feared that even the more fringe clothing that Vera had was still far too brazen for Andras's tastes.
"Petticoat? Who do I look like?" Vera stared at Andras in something akin to disgust. "I never even considered buying a petticoat. You're lucky I even know what that is! Don't be such a baby! You have to have confidence! You need to act like you wouldn't care if you walked into the room naked! You need to be so comfortable in your skin that other people get uncomfortable in theirs!" Or something like that, honestly she was making it up as she went. "Besides, low cut or not it barely makes a difference with you." She'd never been one to pull punches. "Of course, that also means you could safely go extra low cut without it being risky..."
Vera sighed, no, of course not. Andras wasn't going to suddenly be OK with that just because Vera told her to be.
"Ugh, fine, hold on..." Vera disappeared into the back of her closet, emerging again with a rather gorgeous, crimson dress that on Andras would be so long it'd almost be dragging on the floor. "I was suppose to wear this to a school dance years ago, but I missed it because I was busy being a delinquent. I was... closer to your size at the time anyway." She then promptly draped it over Andras's head. By the time the girl would have removed the dress and could see again, Vera would be holding up a pair of extravagant eye-patches. Both were adorned with flowers, one a red rose, the other black. "I told you I was prepared! Which one do you like better?!"
Andras was taken aback at the dress Vera managed to find. It was far too pretty for Andras. 'Wait, what am I thinking, too pretty for me? I can't think like that. Even if she's wrong in general, Vera has a point about confidence...' She pulled it from over her head, only to find another article that she didn't expect in Vera's hands.
"W-What are you doing with eyepatches in your wardrobe?!" Andras was washed with confusion, curiosity, and perhaps a little bit of excitement. Her eye darted back and forth over the two options without settling on one. "Um... The rose would probably match the dress better, right? Or does it match too much if it's all red? Wait, would the black one match too much with my hair...?" Andras stopped herself before she wasted Vera's time for any longer. "Um. I think I like the rose more."
Andras took a look back down at the dress, her eyes darting back up to Vera, and then back to the dress. "And this dress is really beautiful, Vera, so... Um... Thank you..." Andras wanted to hide her face, but she was trying her best to be up front. After all, Vera was helping her out, the least she could do is thank her properly.
...Or at least as properly as Andras could do.
"They aren't part of my wardrobe, I bought them for you. I said I was prepared, keep up." Vera rolled her eyes. She'd never understand the way Andras's mind worked. "Next... we..." Vera wandered back into the closet. Then she saw it. She came out of the closet and promptly ripped the red dress out of Andra's hands, tossing it over her shoulder like so much trash. "Forget that shit, THIS is your dress!" She held up a new one, way too overdesigned with frills and ribbons, but yet all in darker tones. It couldn't be mistaken for modern fashion. In fact, one would have had to go back a few ]centuries to make it work. Even then it might've been eccentric.
"I totally forgot I stol- . . . borrowed this," Vera told the other girl. "But combine this and my makeup skills and we'll have you looking ready to cast a spell on the whole ball. Well, that or a curse."
Andras was dumbstruck at Vera's sudden change of dress. A slight sense of irritation weaved through Andras's expression for a moment, but she bounced back quickly. It was easy to do so, since Vera's other dress was equally extravagant. Someone having this much of a wardrobe was such a foreign concept to Andras; she wondered if she personally could have turned out like that if her childhood was different.
Andras's mind snapped back to something Vera said. "Wait, this is stolen?! Nobody is going to show up to the ball and demand it right off of my back, are they?!" Andras only considered such a possibility because of the unpredictable nature of the people Vera has slighted. She already had one crazy night specifically just because of an ex.
Of course, Andras was excited to try the dress. It was something more fitting for a demon lady of despair such as herself, suffused with old world charm. If someone did try to take it off of her, she would just have to show that the sorceress costume was anything but.
"Let's just say I liked the dress more than the girl who lent it to me..." Vera crossed her arms haughtily. "I doubt that tramp will show up, and if she does I'll just tell Wolf to get rid of her." She waved off Andras's concerns. "Then again, every other time someone messes with us, you usually handle it just fine come to think of it. You're kind of a tiny badass." Kidnappings notwithstanding. Quickly trying to shift gears so as not to dwell on those memories, she found her makeup kit. "Now go get dressed so I can complete your transformation. I bet if I do this right you'll be turning more heads than the princess herself."
Andras wasn't sure to pout or just be glad that Vera complimented her, but she eventually settled on a slight pouting. "Hmph. Who's tiny?" Andras mumbled as she stepped into the closet and closed the door behind her. She wasn't sure if Vera was planning on just watching Andras change, but that wasn't going to happen if Andras could help it.
Andras hadn't put on a dress in a decent amount of time, since she prefered her more comfortable setup of hoodie and skirt. Perhaps most concerningly, the dress was tight around Andras's hips as she stepped into it. She began wondering if she was putting it on the right way. "It's actually kind of snug..." Andras said with a tint of worry in her voice. She steadied herself against the closet door, almost losing her balance.
Andras absolutely didn't want to ask for help. It would be an admission of failure, which although a tiny failure, would still be too much. But at the same time, she was concerned she would end up spilling right through the closet doors when she lost her balance the next time. She just had to deal with it, unfortunately. "Um. Vera, you need to help with the back of the dress." Andras said, and quickly added under her breath, "And getting the thing on to begin with..."
"You. You're tiny. Just take the compliment-" Wait. Snug? Weren't they just talking about her being tiny? When Andras asked for her help, Vera had to suppress a grin. No, no, she should give the girl a break now. She'd had her fun. When the door opened, however, Vera almost immediately snorted. The extent to which the dress hugged her curves, and Vera was trying to come to terms with Andras having curves. She probably should've noticed last time too, but Andras hadn't quite drawn attention to it.
"OK, stand still. I promise my hands won't 'slip,'" Vera grabbed the girl's shoulders and spun her around so she could work. ". . .more than once." She said so, but her hands didn't go anywhere they didn't need to and soon enough Andras had been wrestled into the dress. Aside from around her hips, and by goodness what hips they were, the dress fit well enough and wasn't at risk of splitting open on her. "So!" She dragged the girl to a mirror. "What do you think so far? I'm starting to get jealous. I'm almost afraid you'll steal all the attention from me."
Andras breathed a sigh of relief when Vera finally slipped the dress into the correct place. "Weird... I'm surprised it got stuck like that." Andras muttered, still embarrassed by having to call in help. She didn't pay much mind to Vera's reactions, perhaps due to her own self-consciousness.
Andras gave a tentative twirl in the mirror. It was a different feeling to wear something so fancy. She couldn't help but crack a small smile. "I'm glad it fits, becuase I think it... fits." Andras couldn't formulate anything particularly eloquent, because she was too focused on her reflection. She would definitely wear stuff like this more often... if these types of clothes weren't so expensive, that is. "I won't steal your attention, Vera... But what are you wearing anyway?" Andras was curious about that since Vera said she would attend, but it was only now that she had a good chance to ask.
"If you want to know what I'm wearing so badly, then hold still and let me do your makeup. I have a lot of work to do for my outfit, so we need to hurry so we're not too late. After a while it stops being fashionable," Vera told her. "Now when you wink at people do you want to set hearts aflutter with fear or desire? Because I can do either." She had to bite her lip at the suggestion that Andras could actually wink at someone and pull it off. Well, maybe with her help she might manage.
Andras fidgeted for a moment as Vera got closer to apply her makeup. It wasn't something she was familiar with beyond some basics Andras looked up when bored. She was hoping that Vera was going to play the costume straight, rather than surprise Andras with some kind of strange clown makeup. Andras hoped that if it looked too crazy, she would be able to wash it off without incurring Vera's wrath. Or hurting her feelings, if that was even possible. She was also worried that Vera would need to take off her eyepatch, which... was not going to happen. Andras planned to deal with that problem as it appeared.
Andras fixed herself in place as best she could next to Vera as she thought about the question. "Wink? Is that an important skill to have? I guess I'd rather have desire than fear me... Let me try." Andras's face visibly strained as she winked with her right eye. It was clearly a foreign feeling for her, and perhaps more strangely, she had decided to wink with her covered eye.
Vera stood there, waiting for Andras to try. As the two ended up staring at each other, Vera realized that Andras already had... with the eye under her eyepatch. The staring continued a moment longer as Vera resisted the urge to smack some sense into the little idiot. It was just too much.
"That was great. Do it just like that when we're at the ball," she spoke through gritted teeth. "Now stand still and keep your eye shut or else you'll need both eyepatches." Vera sat Andras down and went to work. When she was done, Andras was like a different person. Vera probably could have charged people money to do something like this... not that she needed it.
Dark purple lipstick and glittering purple eyeshadow added some color to the look while maintaining the dark aesthetic, with extravagant winged eyeliner completing the look.
During the process, Andras would have felt something touch her eyepatch, but moments later she'd have felt the other eyepatch be slipped on, so it was nothing too suspicious, and the new one was big enough that it was comfortably slipped over the first without having to remove it.
Her outfit was complete.
"Well we'd better not make this a habit, or I might actually develop a crush on you. What would poor Wolf think, hm?" Vera chuckled absently. "Now feel free to ogle yourself in the mirror while I go get ready." Without giving her an opportunity to respond, Vera walked away and locked herself in the bathroom with her own supplies.
Andras felt a twist in her stomach at Vera's teasing comment. 'A-A crush?! She's just joking around, right? She's with Wolf, so she's gotta be joking. Right...?' Andras felt a blur of excitement, anxiety, and even some shame. Of course, while Andras was stunned by the offhand comment, Vera nonchalantly walked past her and worked on her own costume, leaving Andras's mind in chaos.
Andras felt the new eyepatch as she slowly calmed herself down. It was a different sensation than she was used to, but she really was curious about how she looked. She resisted the urge to touch (and likely mess up) her make up, so she kept idly inspecting the eyepatch as she stood up and walked to the mirror.
Andras's gasp likely could have been heard by Vera in the bathroom. It really was something Andras couldn't have imagined herself. 'I almost look like the real thing...' Andras thought to herself, before locking the thought away. She was an actual sorceror, despite the girly-girl time that was transpiring. She felt like for a moment she almost lost her sense of being a Demon Lady of Despair.
Andras took a deep inhale, calming herself. She had to get back in her element. Vera wouldn't be out for a while, so Andras took the opportunity to try some poses and cool moves in the mirror. She wouldn't likely get an opportunity to do so with such a costume in a decent amount of time, after all.
It took Vera quite some time, but when she finally emerged, the purpose of her change in chair became apparent. She arguably looked more like a demon than Andras ever had. Although, if one were to ask Vera, she'd tell them she wasn't masquerading as any sort of demon. She was dressed up as on of her favorite legends.
"Ready?" Vera asked the other girl. "We're gonna be cutting it a little close at this point." However, she couldn't resist showing off just a little. She stood up straight and flipped a few strands of hair out of her face, throwing on a toothy grin. "Like it?"
Andras was awestruck. "That's... From... Wow." Andras was surprised that Vera even knew the character that she was dressed as. "Do you think that the people of the Ball will even get it?" Vera's grin was infectious, and Andras found herself smirking too. "Either way, I think it's really good." Andras said, eyeing Vera as she showed off her costume.
Andras took a deep breath. It was a journey, but she managed to survive. And it turned out much better than she was expecting. "Thanks to you, I'm ready to go. Shall we?"
"I think it's mysterious enough to pass as a costume no matter what people think it is." Vera chuckled. "And yes." She linked arms with Andras. "We shall. Time to make everyone jealous."
And to make a certain stuck up princess very mad, if she was lucky.
Andras stopped for a moment. She hadn't actually thought up the logistics of going to the ball, now that the two were together in both presence and outfit. "So. Um. Are you going to drive? Or should I summon a horse... or something...?"
Andras didn't have a horse to summon, but if any place was good to show up on a fantastical mount, then it would be a fancy ball. Though... She mulled over the cards she had available. It wouldn't be hard to find a way around town, but it would be hard to do so without messing up her outfit. She wasn't an experienced beast rider by any stretch of the imagination, and the Root's spells for summoning often gave more... aggressive options than she wanted for transport. "It might be hard if I have to summon a ride..." Andras mumbled.
"Oh don't worry about that, my dear," Vera grinned with a toss of her hair... forgetting she barely had any hair to toss at this point. "Just tell me how big of a limo you want. We can do much better than a horse."
Andras stopped in her tracks. "Wait. An actual limo?" Andras's voice wavered slightly, before she realized she didn't answer Vera's question. "J-Just a normal limo is fine!" She quickly added, as if not responding would make Vera rescind the offer.
She turned away from Vera from a moment to gather herself. Even someone like Andras always wanted to make that entrance to a dance. She couldn't deny herself the excitement. The fact that it was Vera coming with her made it even better.
...Or perhaps it was worse? Andras wasn't sure if showing too much enthusiasm would make Vera tease her. Or perhaps not showing enough would make Vera cancel the offer? Andras's mind was stuck between the two options, unsure of which direction to go.
"Oh, how humble Miss Andras, willing to accept simply a 'normal' Limo," Vera teased the flustered girl. "Well that will be a bit easier to acquire, so sure." One phone call later, and they were told their ride would be there within ten to fifteen minutes. "Don't worry, I told them to stock the limo cooler with apple juice instead of beer, just for you."
An obvious joke, since Vera had made the call right in front of Andras and have never mentioned drinks period... but Vera hadn't been able to resist that jab.
Andras puffed out her chest in pride. "Actually, I'll have you know that I will be of drinking age in just a few days anyway." She then wavered. "So um.. I guess you still would be correct for tonight, at least..." Andras's face tinged red with embarrassment. "Since it's so close to the actual day, I was going to treat this like an early birthday party!" Andras let out a nervous laugh, wondering to herself if revealing something like that was lame or not.
She began to wish that the ride would arrive before she dug her grave deeper.
"WAIT, WHAT!?" Vera surged forward, gripping Andras's shoulders tightly. "Why are you just telling me this now?!" Never mind that it was probably her own fault for harassing Andras for 90% of the time she'd know her rather than being an actual friend. This was important! It was Vera and her friend had a birthday coming up. That meant a party. She could do parties.
She was a little annoyed that the princess was apparently hijacking Andras's birthday, but... hadn't Vera technically reverse hijacked it? It all worked out she supposed.
"Well don't wear yourself out, because you'll be getting a party of your own after this!" Vera insisted. Their ride arrived shortly after, but it did not take them directly to the ball. They had to get Wolf first. It seemed only fair, him being her actual boyfriend and all...
He too wore an unusual get-up, but it was perhaps the first time he'd ever truly looked the part of what he was supposed to be, that being the latest of an ancient, well and truly, order of knights. He wore the purest white tunic and trousers Vera had ever seen, complete with golden threading and tassels, beneath silvery, platinum armor with mindbogglingly ornate engravings.
It clearly was a ceremonial outfit, that wasn't meant for, let alone ever having seen, a battlefield seeing as how the armor left too many parts exposed. It also lacked a helmet, but included a crimson cape.
He looked ridiculous climbing into a limousine.
"Wow, you actually went for it, huh?" Vera had to hold in her laughter. It had been her suggestion to dress up as an actual knight for the ball.
"It... wasn't a bad idea..."
"That's a seriously fancy get-up, I gotta admit." It didn't look bad, so much as it was just... anachronistic.
"It's based off of my mother's armor," Wolf admitted, plunging the limo into near dead silence save for the faint rumble of the engine as they began moving again.
"Well... it suits you." Vera added more quietly.
". . . thanks." Wolf squirmed uncomfortably, keeping his gaze lowered. And thus the awkward silence returned.
Andras flinched as Vera reacted so explosively to her birthday reveal. 'I-Is she the type to take birthdays seriously?' Andras made sure to file away that fact in her mind. It made her a little happy to know that Vera would be interested in throwing a party just for her, but it filled her with apprehension in the way that only Vera could manage to do. She figured protesting would not change anything, and Andras was curious about what Vera had in mind, so she kept silent.
Andras was surprised that Wolf ended up with such a costume as he stepped into the limo. 'How much of that was Vera's influence, I wonder...?' She mused, as Wolf and Vera idly chatted about the costume. She didn't quite pick up much of the conversation, because Andras felt somewhat awkward with the two that formed an actual couple meeting up, and she wondered to herself if she felt awkward because of a third wheel effect, or perhaps some other reason...
Andras shrugged it off. She was going to really... Do whatever it was she was supposed to do at a fancy costume party. 'No time to worry about that gut feeling of yours. Especially since you're likely just antsy because of the party.'
Andras sat, lost in thought. She wondered what she would do at the ball, since she didn't want to follow around Vera the entire time like some kind of dog. Maybe she should try and set some kind of goal, like getting someone's phone number...? Andras felt somewhat annoyed that the person she would ask about this is Vera, when Andras is trying her best not to turn to Vera for everything.
Andras frowned slightly as she watched the passing city scenery. 'Maybe I'll just go with the flow and see what happens.'
Vera couldn't take the ensuing silence for more than a solid minute. Why was Andras being quiet too? OK, it was probably because she was Andras. Fortunately, Andras was easy to figure out.
OK, that was a lie. The girl was too weird to totally figure out, but Vera had learned quite a few buttons she could push, for good or for ill.
She reached out and grabbed Andras, pulling her closer so their shoulders were touching.
"Now, what do you think of Andras's outfit? Looks like she'd finally ready to actually inflict some despair don't you think? Maybe even break a few hearts?" Vera forced on a grin.
"O-oh, ummm..." Wolf perked up and quickly glanced over Andras. "Wow, I almost wouldn't recognize you. You could almost get away with wearing that every day!" It took him a second to realize that wasn't necessarily a compliment... "Err, I-I mean... th-that is... I-I'm not trying to s-"
Vera frowned at him as he desperate tried and failed to recover, "Just say it looks good, Wolf. That's all you had to do."
"I-it looks good..." Wolf mumbled while fidgeting anxiously. It was true, anyway.
"Of course it looks good, I put it together for her! Now was that so hard?" Vera rolled her eyes. "Of course, I had a pretty decent canvas to work with, so I can't take all the credit." She nudged Andras playfully. She was going to have to carry the mood all night for these two, wasn't she?
Well she'd dealt with worse she supposed.
Andras almost mirrored Wolf's fidgety posture when subjected to Vera's sudden interjection. It actually somewhat comforted her that she wasn't the only one out of her element, and she found herself smiling at Wolf's fumbling.
Trying to change mental gears, Andras quickly tried to think of a witty reply, and spoke up, "Actually, I wasn't even sure the paint was the right... size for the canvas...?" Andras's confidence began tapering the second she started to speak, but she tried to course correct. "I-I mean, we're lucky that it fit at all. I thought that wouldn't be an issue since you're taller than me!" She nervously laughed, before meekly adding, "I'm glad you both think it looks good."
'Well, maybe going with the flow is fine. It's usually pretty fun with them involved, either way.' Andras thought, and felt a little more confident in the night overall, despite how poorly she managed her reply.
"Oho, is that so?" Vera smirked at Andras. "What are you getting at, hm?" Vera leaned in, almost nose-to-nose with the girl. However, it was all a distraction as her arms snaked around and got into position... before her fingers viciously attacked Andras's hips. "Getting cocky because you've got it where it counts?!"
Wolf just sighed and averted his eyes for Andras's sake, hoping to let her hold onto at least some of her pride.
Andras was already off guard when Vera came so close to her, but she was never prepared for the attack that came immediately after. "Vera, no! Stooop!" Andras cried, squirming away from Vera in between suppressed fits of laughing. Wolf could see that Andras was so surprised that her cards flickered into existence, as if she was trying to find a magical way out of the situation.
Andras eventually managed to put an arm's length between her and Vera (without use of the Root), where she caught her breath. Her face was still red, but she had survived. Somehow. "That... Was... Uncalled for!" Andras crossed her arms with indignation, keeping them ready to protect her sides. "Does she do that to you too, Wolf?" She said, before cracking a mischievous grin and adding, "Or is she just that jealous?
Andras felt a twinge of fear when she said it, but she was finally catching some kind of rhythm in the conversation and didn't want to let Vera win so easily. Andras began to wonder if this was Vera's way of psyching up the (self-admittedly) less social friends of hers.
'Or maybe she's just screwing with us and doesn't have a plan. I guess it's still working either way.' Andras thought, dismissing her image of a mastermind Vera calculating out the night in advance.
"You really don't learn, do you?" Vera suddenly glowered at her. Andras would have to keep wondering about whether Wolf had ever been tickled, for the boy was left silent by the sudden mood change. Vera reached out and grabbed Andras by the collar of her dress and dragged her back over so she could glare directly into the other girl's eyes. ". . . don't move." And suddenly Vera gently dabbed at Andras's eye with a cloth. "Almost made your makeup run. Can't have you get all messed up at the last second, can we?"
And indeed it was the last second. Only a short time later the limo arrived at the ball.
"Well, have fun, my itty-bitty sorceress. I owe Wolf a dance. I'll come check on you later." And with that Andras was abandoned and left to her own devices amongst a sea of people.