Setting Up for Writing Retreat!

OK, so I just got here and have taken a couple of hours to put things together, and you guys are not going to believe this place! We’re going to have the best week ever.

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Portal Cam!

I met the Air B&B owners at their place in Awenia, and they showed me to the portal. I don’t know if all you guys have travelled by portal before, but hold on to your stomachs. I set one of the drones up outside the front gate so you’ll be on portal cam too when you arrive.

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Automatic gates!

The gates open automagically when you approach them, which I guess would be a problem if we were anywhere but in a hidden B&B that one can access only via portal. Luckily, we are in a hidden B&B that one can access only via portal.

So you all keep asking me what the place looks like, and I can finally tell you since I’ve now actually seen it.

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Writing Area 1

This is the one writing area that’s upstairs. So whoever likes the breeze the best and needs a typewriter instead of a tablet or a notebook might really like this spot.

Everything else is downstairs; you all will love it: you have to go through a secret door to get to the living space. Just push the candle, and the panel will slide to reveal the stairs.

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Living Area

For the four of us, I think this space is huge, and it has such a cool vibe! There’s plenty of couch and chair space to stretch out on, and I don’t even think you’ll mind that it’s self-catering: the kitchen looks pretty nice, as well.

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Sleeping areas

There are four of these lounge-style daybeds. One of them is in an alcove just out of sight here, on the left. I took that one: sorry, ladies! The other three are separated by the pillars. I took it this way because I love that bookshelf. So much of the decoration here, even though it’s sparse, is really, really cool.

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Other downstairs writing areas

The picture doesn’t do this justice: once you get here, take a look at that amazing root system in the corner here: it looks like it was made for that nifty bowl of crystals, yeah?

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Sweatshirt selfie!

And just so you guys don’t think I’ve lost my marbles and been replaced with some sort of estate agent-style pod person, check out this sweatshirt! I saw it and couldn’t stop laughing, so I knew it had to be mine!

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Fae Garden

The garden is not shabby, either, and I think if you wanted to write outside in nature—well, whatever kind of nature this is, anyway, you could really enjoy it up here. This is a little fae garden display, just tucked into one of the building’s corners. I heart it!

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Garden selfie!

See, I’m not a pod person at all! The trees out here are really cool: you will love them. And the sky—I don’t know if it comes across properly, but the sky is amazing, sort of pink and blue at the same time with the pink not being to obscenely girly.

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OMG owl nails!

Also, I got these new nail wraps from Koffin, and they are so cool! I don’t know if you can see properly in the photograph, but they have little owls on them. I squeed.

Right: I’m going to portal back down into Awenia, now that I’ve got my stuff put away and sent you guys all these cool photos. I figure I’ll do some grocery shopping so when you all get here tomorrow we’ll be mostly stocked. Don’t forget to bring stuff you really like from home: Awenia is like the smallest Fae Realm I’ve ever seen, so I don’t think they deliver pizza out here.

Style Card:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Lelutka, Cate Bento Mesh Head
Skin: Lumae, Lelutka Deia face, Lumae skin Tone 1 (All current skin lines are available at the Lumae Main Store!)
Ears: Lumae, Leevi Long Ears
Hair: Truth, Daphne
Glasses: EarthStones, The Flower Child
Tattoo: Juna: Kat tattoo (At The Liaison Collaborative)
Nails: Dark Passions, Koffin Nails, Halloween Hoots (Available at Trick or Treat Lane!)
Clothes:
Top: Jackelope, Sara Outfit (without skirt) (Available at Trick or Treat Lane!)
Trousers: The Annex, Janae Leather Crops (This is a new release at The Annex Main Store!)
Shoes: Gos, Hi-Tops

Environment:
Location: Awenia
Outside:
Building: Rivendale, Witchy Lair (Available at Trick or Treat Lane!)
Glass Pumpkins: Vespertine, Illuminated Pumpkins (At Collabor88)
Portal: Spell, Galactica, Portals to other dimensions
Garden Wall: Stormwood, Cobblestone Wall
Fae Fountain: Atelier Visconti, Fountain Fiora
Faery Tree: !go!, Elven Tree
Inside:
Downstairs Living Area

Couch, chairs, coffee table, end tables: Trompe Loeil, Cobble Hill
Round table and crystal ball: Raindale, Shadewoods (Available at Trick or Treat Lane!)
Wall art: Oubliette, familiars (Available at Trick or Treat Lane!)
Star lanterns: Spyralle, Halloween Star Lanterns (Available at Trick or Treat Lane!)
Daybeds: DaD, Vintage Paris Daybed
Nifty crescent moon bookshelf: Circa, Midnight Coven Moonphase Wall Shelf (Available at Trick or Treat Lane!)
White desks: MadPea Writer’s Corner (desks, blotters, typewriters, phones, chairs)
Kitchenette: Tia, Olivia Kitchen
Bowl of crystals: MadPea, A Tale of Two Sisters, Bowl of Crystals
Upstairs Writing Area
Wall Candles: Rivendale, Wall Candles (Rivendale’s trick or treat gift for Trick or Treat Lane!)
Desk: Violetility, Lorkyn’s Desk
Books: Stormwood, Literati Book Set
Red-Eyed Owl: Contraption, Wainwright’s Toys, Messenger Owl
Cat with Witch Hat: HalfDeer, Requiem Moon, The Essentials (At the Arcade)
Lavender Spell Book: Birdie, Little Witch, Magic Book, Mystic (At the Arcade)
Typewriter and Lamp: Aisling, Bric-a-Brac Desk
Sun and Moon Statues: MadPea, Return of the Light
Kitteh in a bag: MishMish, Kitties Go To Market, Princess
Poses: All from An Lar (I’m saddened to see that An Lar Poses is closing its doors after several years of offering some of the nicest, most subtle, and most versatile poses in Second Life (in my opinion). Everything at the An Lar Main Store is 50% off through the 31st of October.)

 

 

Modern (Royal Fae) Living!

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I first saw it from the Treehouse.

I first saw it from the treehouse. The morning sun split one tower away from the others. I guess Nathaniel had been out doing something at Mysthaven, because he wasn’t with me. There were so many things going on in Awenia, in my Faerie, just then: I was busy adding some things in to the book forest and making enough spaces for the Fae who would one day call Awenia home to live. I suppose I hadn’t thought of the need for a castle… until I saw this one.

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As soon as I was reasonably put together, I ventured out to explore.

As soon as I was reasonably put together, I ventured out to explore. By that time, there were already flowers and trees springing up around the edges of the castle lands.

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And what better way to explore a newly arrived, majestic, obviously empty castle than on stag back?

And what better way to explore a newly arrived, majestic, obviously empty castle than on stag-back? I couldn’t think of one, so that’s the way I chose to do it.

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There followed some serious rumination on my part.

There followed some serious rumination on my part: namely a quick trot round the perimeter and a text message to Nathaniel: We’re Moving. Obviously Yule Decorations Will Come First. Because I knew Nathaniel would be fine with that. I mean, it’s not like I gave him no warning at all. I think last time I decided we were moving, I probably just — no, wait. Last time I decided we were moving, it was because somebody blew our house up. Right. But I think there was at least one time where he walked up to me on the street and said, “Love, where’s our house gone?” That’s probably just what he gets for marrying me. I should come with a Caveat Emptor clause.

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Nevertheless, he showed up that evening just as I was putting the candles in the reception.

Nevertheless, he showed up that evening just as I was putting the candles in the reception. He looked kind of uncomfortable. “Should a Queen—I mean, former Queen—really do her own decorating and furniture moving, even if it’s with magic?” he wondered.

“One. I am not a former anything. I am still a Queen: I abdicated Wylds, not Queendom altogether,” I said. Perhaps I was a bit snappish, but he keeps on pretending I’m no longer a Queen at all. Seriously, who does that? “And two: Bran has been helping with the furniture, and magic is more fun and more cost effective than minions.”

“Clearly,” was his reply. He still looked uncomfortable.

“These candles are pretty tall,” I said.

“I remember when I used to call you ‘shorty’,” he replied. Oh, boy. It was going to be one of those nights.

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“Look! Holiday treats for our guests!”

“Look! Holiday treats for our guests!” I said.

“We don’t have any guests,” Nathaniel replied. “Therefore, they are for us. Nice gingerbread.”

I sighed and moved the gingerbread men around so it wouldn’t look like My Beloved Consort had taken one. “Clutie made these, you know,” I said.

Nathaniel might have choked. Or it could have been a cough.

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“What do you think of our tree?” I asked.

“What do you think of our tree?” I asked. “I found it at one of those holiday markets. It’s from The Looking Glass.”

“So, Clutie didn’t make it.”

“No, Clutie didn’t make it.”

“What’s Bran doing?”

“Eterior decorations. He says he has never decorated a place with electricity before.”

“That should be interesting,” Nathaniel said.

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“Hey, is that mistletoe?” he asked.

“Hey, is that mistletoe?” he asked.

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“Of course it’s mistletoe,” I replied.

“Of course it’s mistletoe,” I replied. “You don’t really think I’d put up Yule decorations without mistletoe somewhere, do you?”

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He didn’t answer, but then it didn’t really matter. I do still love him so.

He didn’t answer, but then it didn’t really matter. I do still love him so. I know our relationship probably looks a little weird, but it’s still the best relationship a Fae Queen could hope for.

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“Do you think our relationship looks kind of weird?” I asked.

“Do you think our relationship looks kind of weird?” I asked.

“Don’t be silly: we’re perfectly normal, darling,” Nathaniel said.

Just then a shout came up from outside. “Your Majesty! Come and see the outdoor lights!” Bran sounded as excited as I’d ever heard him.

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“Gosh, Bran—that’s a lot of lights,” I said.

“Gosh, Bran—that’s a lot of lights,” I said.

“I know! Aren’t they amazing?”

I winced. “They are breathtaking,” I replied.

Nathaniel winked and kissed me on the cheek. “I’ve got to get back to Mysthaven, but only for a few hours, love. Can’t wait to see what you’ve done to the place by morning.”

And then he was gone. And I, well. I let myself think, as I wandered around the still mostly empty castle, how it should look. I added a few pieces here and there.

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I wondered if one day I’d be “that crazy old fae lady in the castle who lives all alone and feeds the birds.”

I wondered if one day I’d be “that crazy old fae lady in the castle who lives all alone and feeds the birds.” I could see it.

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I could see myself walking the battlements, alone.

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Alone up close, alone from afar.

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Ever-hopeful at the front entrance….

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And ever-disappointed.

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By the time the sun was high in the sky the next day, I’d done our bedroom (in Early Modern Noble Creations, of course!)

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And I’d added some outdoor seating.

And I’d added some outdoor seating. There is an entire roof terrace and balcony that’s just for our private apartments, so I can make it as comfortable and modern as I like.

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A more casual and quiet family eating space.

A more casual and quiet family eating space is up here as well, with room for Wren and Drysi should they care to visit, or maybe even more intimate friends, though I can’t think of whom I’d put in that place except Dyisi, at least for now.

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I’ll miss the treehouse. But you can see it from here.

I’ll miss the treehouse. But you can see it from here. We’ll turn it into a community centre, as Bran and Clutie expressed strong opposition to its disappearing altogether.

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And who can say what tomorrow will bring?

Style Cards:

Castle: Rivendale, Dreamy Castle. What a gorgeous and adaptable build this is! It’s a castle that feels like a home and not a fortress or a box, and I can’t wait to finish decorating it. How fortunate I am to know such genius and amazing creators. Riven, thank you so much for making such a wonderful and perfect castle. 

Gwyneth:
Blue Outfit:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Vista Bento Mesh Head, Lia
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Helana
Eyes: Mesange, Sanford Eyes
Clothes:
Sweatshirt: Emery, Contemplation Sweatshirt
Trousers: The Muses, Anane Legging Pant
Scarf and Leggings: The Annex, Knitted Scarf, Blue Legwarmers (Available NOW at the Pay It Forward Event!)
Boots: Sweet Lies, Ragnarok Boots, Blue
Hair: Truth, Apple
Headpiece, Krystal, Celt Circlet
Poses: An Lar
Location: Awenia, Faerie

Red Dress:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Vista Bento Mesh Head, Lia
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Helana
Eyes: Mesange, Sanford Eyes
Dress: The Annex, Olivia Gown (Available NOW at Genre!)
Hair: Sintiklia, Sheba (Available NOW at Hairology!)
Headpiece, Junbug, The Sabrina Circlet
Necklace and Ring: The Plastik, Anais Jewelery Set
Poses: An Lar
Location: Awenia, Faerie

Nathaniel:
Hair: Argrace Shirogane Reds hair
Eyes: Ikon Sunrise Eyes, Verdigris
Body: Slink Physique Male
Head: Labyrinth Head Shape D
Clothing:
Jacket A&D Clothing Paolo Blazer
Pants – AB Deacon Jeans
Shoes – YMCA boots from Ducknipple

Decor:

Castle Exterior
Garland over front door: The Looking Glass, Our Festive Joy (Available NOW at The Secret Affair!)
Wreath: CJ, Winter Wreath Helleborus
Column Trees: Tarte, Twinkle Trees
Crystal Trees: Hayabusa
Ground Cover:
The Looking Glass, Dawn’s Promise Flower Fields, Dream Fields
{anc} Sugar Rose Fields
Christmas Tree: Swallow, Christmas Tree
Bare trees with Crystals: {anc}, Tears Tree
Wildflowers:
Foxgloves, Heart
Secret Garden Flowers, keke
Forest patch: Studio Skye, Enchanted Woods
Birds:
{anc} Forget Swallow, No Limits Flock of Flying Doves
String Lights: Vespertine, Twinkle Fairylight Curtains

Castle Interior:

Lounge/Living Room:
Couch and assorted decor: Libertine, Justine
Tapestries: Prema, Laurin DeVinna
Sweets Table: Noble Creations, Christmas Table (Available NOW at Genre!)

Library:
Christmas Decorations: The Looking Glass, Our Festive Joy (Available NOW at The Secret Affair!)
Candelabrae: Spyralle, Cathedral Candelabra
Books: StormWood, Literati Book Set

Tower Bedroom:
Bed: Noble Creations, Adult Reflections Bed (Available NOW at Cosmopolitan!)
Vanity: Noble Creations, Vanity Set
Curtains: Noble Creations, Classic Curtains
Unicorn Tapestry: MeadowWorks
Rug: Atelier Visconti, Helena Carpet

Tower Exterior Terrace:
Living Furniture: Artisan Fantasy, Gazebo Gacha (Available NOW at The Imaginarium!)
Dining Arch: Noble Creations, Magical Arch (Available NOW at We ❤ Roleplay!)
Dining Table: Indulge, Home Dining

 

The Amazing Catwoman: A History, Part 2

The Amazing Catwoman:

The Amazing Catwoman:

Right, so I have a few hours before I have to go down and do Goblin Guard Duty for Her Seelie Won’t-Let-Me-Out-Of-Her-Realmness, so I guess I’d better record a little bit more about what happened to me in House Geasan and how things went after the five people who lived there (yes, even Shari!) accepted me into their occasionally merry and always interesting band of mayhem.

Shari spent weeks teaching me how to glamour my skin. Every day, we’d get it a shade or two lighter and more human looking, and every night it’d go away, and every morning she’d throw something at me because I hadn’t made the glamour strong enough to hold up overnight.

“What are you gonna do,” she used to ask, “when the Secret Police come crashing through our doors one day and discover you’re a Svart? You’ll be sent off to Faerie, tortured til you can’t stand up, or worse!”

I often retorted that House Geasan would be in even more trouble for harbouring a Svart than I would be for being one, but she didn’t really buy it.

Anyway, the morning finally came up when she didn't throw anything at me.

Anyway, the morning finally came when she didn’t throw anything at me.

Anyway, the morning finally came when she didn’t throw anything at me. I was sleeping on an old couch that belonged to some relative of David’s by this point, in a room that used to be a cellar closet but, once we’d (well, I’d) scrubbed all the damp out and cleaned up the walls, added an old trunk and an armchair, a couple of lamps and an ottoman, most of which were already in storage in the cellar anyway, David said I could have the room for myself, and Shari became much nicer to me after that—except for the throwing random shit at me in the mornings bit.

I stretched. There wasn’t a window in the cellar, so there was no way to tell what time it was.

“Breakfast, you pale bitch!” Shari finally called from the kitchen. I went upstairs to find that she was actually cooking breakfast. I don’t think I’d ever realised Shari ate anything but crisps and seaweed before this. “And you can have the day off,” she said. She even smiled at me.

So I spent the day mostly lounging on the couch.

So I planned to spend the day mostly lounging on the couch.

So I planned to spend the day mostly lounging on the couch. It felt good!

My respite didn’t last long, though.

“You want to start learning some magic?” Owen asked.

“You want to start learning some magic?” Owen asked; it was probably some time after noon. Owen was the resident magic expert in the House, and he did things like help the team hide themselves when necessary, provide distractions, that sort of thing. Back then, I didn’t know what they all did for a living, but, yeah. I knew it was probably not completely on the up and up.

“I thought it was my day off,” I replied.

“I thought it was my day off, I replied.

“Smart-arse. Nobody gets a day off,” Owen said.

“Shari said I could have the day off!”

“Shari is an idiot,” Owen said. “Nobody gets a day off. Here.”

He threw a stack of notebooks at me, which my memory says I caught neatly.

He threw a stack of notebooks at me, which my memory says I caught neatly.

He threw a stack of notebooks at me, which my memory says I caught neatly: goddess knows what actually happened.

“What am I meant to do with these?” I wondered.

“What am I meant to do with these?” I wondered.

“You’ll need them for writing shit down.” Owen came and sat down in the arm chair. He handed me a ballpoint pen. “Now, you want to start simple. Write down all the steps you go through to glamour yourself. And,” he squinted at me. “You really ought to do something about your eyes. They look weird.”

“Look,” I said. “I already told Shari. I’m not changing my ears, and I’m not changing my eyes.”

He shrugged. “Your funeral, but you should learn to glamour them for when you start running jobs with us. Lios Alfar have light eyes, green, grey, blue, doesn’t matter, but they’re always light.”

I rolled my eyes.

“Yeah; yours are still yellow even when you do that,” he said, unaffected by my sarcasm. He pointed at the notebooks. “Start with your glamour. How you manage it. How you make it strong. Writing it down will help you remember.”

Yeah, I remember that pretty clearly. After that, there was a lot of writing and writing and writing.

Once I’d got the knack of writing down spells, David took me through physical training, which was rough, but fun. After that, I started doing small jobs with the team, mostly light corporate espionage, but at least I was able to earn my keep.

And I'll never forget the day I bought my first actual for-me outfit.

And I’ll never forget the day I bought my first actual for-me outfit.

And I’ll never forget the day I bought my first actual for-me outfit with the money I’d earned. Oh, the feel of leather again, instead of charity shop stuff and hand-me-downs from girls who’d long passed through the House.

I remember that day because that was the day Owen came down into the cellar again.

“I brought you something,” he said. And he pointed to the crate.

“I brought you something,” He said. And he pointed to the crate.

“What the fuck is that?” I said, staring at the small mountain of books he’d placed there.

“Your next lesson,” he said as he settled in to the arm chair. “Those are grimoires.”

“Grimoires?” I said. “You mean books of magic.”

“Grimoires?” I said. “You mean books of magic?”

“Go to the head of the class,” Owen said. “Now, put away that novel, and if I ever see you put down a grimoire like that, I’ll beat you with it before I make you straighten each page magically and mend the spine.”

“So…. You want me to read these.”

“So…. You want me to read these.”

“I want you to study them. Somewhere inside those books, and those are all the grimoires we have at the house, you’ll find things that you can and can’t do, and we’ll ascertain and develop your personal magical style from what you come up with.”

“But there have got to be like twenty books there!”

He nodded and smiled. “And some of them are handwritten, so this won’t be an easy task.”

“Couldn’t I just do more physical training and let David beat me up again?”

Owen snorted. “And why should David get to have all the fun, hm? There are only seventeen books, by the way.” I think he had to count while we were talking.

I sat down on the couch and stared at the books as if they might attack.

I sat down on the couch and stared at the books as if they might attack.

I sat down on the couch and stared at the books as if they might attack. “You know I don’t like to read, Owen,” I said evenly.

“Says the girl who’s got A Wizard of Earthsea propped open on her night table,” Owen said.

“That’s different: it’s a novel.”

“Think of these as novels too,” Owen suggested.

“Think of these as novels too,” Owen suggested. “Only they’re novels written by people, about their real lives. It’s a little like reading someone else’s diary. There’s all kinds of personal shit in therm.”

I still wasn’t convinced. But I did know I was losing this argument.

“Fine,” I snapped. “Just start with the one on the top, I presume?”

“Fine, I snapped. “Just start with the one on the top, I presume?”

Owen sighed. “I don’t care which one you start with. But I want you to study each and every one.”

I knew it was foolish to ask the next question. “And then?”

“And then,” Owen said, with a smug smile, “you can start writing your own grimoire.”

“And then,” Owen said with a smug smile, “you can start writing your own grimoire.”

Fuck. Fuck, fuck, fuck.

Style Cards:

First set of photos (cami and jeans):
Body: Maitreya
Hair: Mina, Elin (Available at Tres Chic!)
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Malika, Chestnut (Available at the 7 Deadly s{K}ins Main Store; Maitreya and SLink appliers also available there!)
Ears: Gauze, High Elf Ears
Eyes: Gauze, Paradox Cat Eyes
Ring: Aisling, The Good Wife
Necklace: Otherskin, Selene
Clothes: Echo, Seri Cami, Hali Skinny Jeans (Available at the Echo Main Store!)
Shoes: Ingenue, Pandora Flats, Noir

Second Set of Photos (leather jacket):
Body: 
Maitreya
Hair: 
Mina, Grace
Skin: 
7 Deadly s{K}ins, Malika, Chestnut (Available at the 7 Deadly s{K}ins Main Store; Maitreya and SLink appliers also available there!)
Ears: 
Gauze, High Elf Ears
Eyes: 
Gauze, Paradox Cat Eyes
Ring: 
Aisling, The Good Wife
Necklace: 
Otherskin, Selene
Clothes and Boots: Flippant, Sometime (Available at the Flippant Main Store!)

Scene:
Couch, Rug, Crates, N4ARS, Bombay Set
Lamps: What Next
Armchair:
Atelier Visconti
Ottoman: Trompe Loeill

Special thanks to Moxy Macbeth for lending me some lamps! Even though she was super fine!

Spiffy photos taken with the indispensible aid of my LumiPro. I never leave home without it! 

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