She was an enchanting creature, his niece. One crafted off old world sensibility and timeless perfection and yet one so poised upon the cusp of modernity all at once. Anastasia, perhaps far better than even himself, and most surely Alexander, having learned to embrace that modern world with the buoyancy of youth even despite her numerate years. How well she maintained her adoptive Father's caution and wariness for the world, one further shaped, surely, by the events off her human life and yet too- how readily she embraced those far more modern ideals off her own strength, her own purpose and indeed her own utter lack of need for either man or relationship when either would surely hinder her own upward ambition. It was pleasing to him, even if he so hardly knew why exactly. In his own time such a daughter would have been nothing but frowned on by society for her willfulness and yet how he reveled in it! How he adored her all the more for it. How very much she was a woman after his own heart in her decided impishness in turn. A trait they surely shared much to Alexander's continued chagrin. How he hoped too that she would never lose it. Her strength was refreshing, her determination endearing. Matteo nothing short of thoroughly fond off his favoured and only niece in every sense. Moments such as these, within the depth of that Russian tea house and so surrounded by the pleasantries of good company and good refreshment nothing short of some off his most favoured.
It was not surprising, perhaps, that their talk should turn to Alexander himself. Anastasia affording him that rare glimmer into the considerations off her thoughts upon the topic off her Father's hidden motivations in so seeking to keep both himself and Anastasia nearby. For all Alexander's gruff manner and aloof nature the Macedonia King, at heart, cared deeply for his immortal child in as much as matteo knew he held affection for himself. Alexander was, simply, a product of his age when the emotions of men were considered better hidden and not left exposed for all too see. He guarded his feelings well and yet Anastasia, as so many women before her, possessed that near keen talent for seeing beneath that polished veneer to the heart of Alexander's motives. Matteo inclined to insist that, surely, it was not a terrible thing for a man to want his daughter and oldest companion to be nearby for at least a little while. In a world that so constantly and so ever-frequently changed even the Frenchman was willing to admit there was a very great pleasure in being with those few, unchanging individuals. Those constants in life. Anastasia and himself those very 'constants' for Alexander. The Duchess was near reluctant in her admittance that it was not a terrible thing for her Father to desire. Her ever-youthful features remaining poised upon a frown and yet Matteo prompted no further as he sipped at his own tea, allowing the woman's thoughts to unfold at they would. Anastasia insisting Alexander knew why she had come to Sacrosanct and what she sought there. The near ancient-Far nodding in soft agreement. The very visions that danced upon the csup off his own eyes having well assured him of Anastasia's intentions perhaps before the woman herself had known of them. Her near coyly asked query prompting that ever-knowing simper to his lips.
"Ah, my darling one, he has no reason to worry of your future. It is as bright and vibrant as you are. It will not all be easy, you are set to be tested in what you seek, but I have seen you prevail too, in more ways than one and perhaps too- in ways you do not anticipate."
Just what she might take from those very words remained to be seen. Anastasia the very sort of woman inclined to silent reflection. Those very words, perhaps, designed to be remembered when she needed them most or indeed found herself upon the precipice of a decision set to come. Matteo, as always, offering little more. Anastasia, as always, hardly asking after it. The pair so falling again into that companionable quiet. One interrupted only by Matteo's own desire to tease his niece with a tale of his own impishness. The pair of them, on occasion, inclined to that gossip shared between them alone. A guilty pleasure for them both. Anastasia rising quickly to the veritable bait of that tale as he had known she would. Matteo equally as eager to tell it. The Frenchman so divulging that tale off his own decided wickedness in teasing Sebastian with those pliars,that amusement playing readily upon his features. Matteo, on occasion, so wholly indulging in his Fae-ness. The impish trickster that so personified his species. Anastasia quick to insist a healthy dose of fear did no harm. Matteo wholly inclined to agree as another chuckle hummed within his throat. Anastasia leaning softly towards him in a manner near conspiratory then to confess her own small crime. Ah, but how intrigued he was! That now finished cup returned to its saucer as he lent forward just so in turn as she inquired as to whether he desired to hear her own wickedness
That near wolfish grin so finds her lips then. His own head nodded at that very mention of Alexis, the woman Alexander had, of late, chosen to warm his bed like so many before her. Those women that passed through his companions life, much like his own, so tending to be no more than fleeting fancies. Anastasia, it seemed, having taken particular offense to this one more so than her predecessors. How readily that warm laughter found him then in response to tha tale! How clearly he could picture Anastasia's very threat and too that look upon Alexanders face at the very idea. That conspiratory wink she afforded him only furthering that delighted amusement.
"No, Mon Cherie, you cannot abide rudeness. Do not tell Alexander i agree with your actions though, he shall tell me off for encouraging you."
That simper so danced upon his lips once more as Anastasia lent back in her own chair and Matteo so spoke of the curious Crusnik he had found within the city of late. One he had pilfered that very venom from the night he had terrified Sebastian in turn. Anastasia seeming to seize upon the idea off something so rare and challenging as a Crusnik. The woman admitting that she too, had not witnessed such a creature in many years.
"Oui, it is in the city, but I fear this one and his girlfriend have befriended our Dorian. If you were to hunt it I fear you would need explain it's death to Dorian and Sebastian both."
How readily it would displease her, he knew, to find that Crusnik veritably protected by the shield of family- in one way or another. Matteo reaching then to slip the last piece off his biscuit between his lips before moving to push back from that table.
"Shall we head to the Church, Ana? You usually care to visit it when we are here."
m a t t e o
it's tough to be a god