She remembers the first glass. It was a dark, bitter juice. The taste of grapes and strawberries with the slight tang of pomegranate lingered in her mouth, the flavor soaked into her tongue. It was Elincia's favorite.

She remembers because she raised her glass and lead the toast,"Long live Crimea, and may She prosper the year round!" And she remember because he only took a tiny sip before sitting his glass back on the long table. Elincia helped herself to gulp for him. It'd be a shame for good wine to go to waste.

The second glass was given to her by Count Bastian. It was a much lighter wine; sweet, fruity and with the compliments and apologies from Empress Sanaki for being unable to attend. He didn't even sip this glass. But, that's okay. Elincia drank his glass too.

The third glass though, she doesn't remember. But she was sure it was delicious. Who would serve the Queen subpar wine after all? Geoffrey stood by the window overlooking the gardens, a glass of red untouched in his left hand. She decided that he was quite handsome with the moonlight on him. And she determined his handsomeness deserved a toast.

She remembers the room spinning and twirling and a distinct sharp pain in her foot. Oh right, that was from the young cadet trying to dance with her. Very sweet boy, really, he even brought her a drink. Elincia thought Geoffrey should be dancing with her. He was sweet and he didn't step on her toes.

She wasn't sure when the evening had come to an official close, or why when she held up one finger there appeared to be two. Geoffrey was still standing guard at his window, his glass still ignored.

"Geoffrey," Elincia stated, "Wh-what are you doing?" He started at the sound of her voice. The liquid sloshed but didn't spill. She noticed that his nose almost tilted to the right, if she squinted and turned her head. Geoffrey made an ahem noise, and Elincia refocused her attention to more than just his nose.

"Your Majesty." She reached for his nose and poked it. Geoffrey twitched. Her eyes lit up and this time she rubbed the bridge and squeezed it. "Your Majesty?" She giggled at his nasally voice.

"Whatcha dooo-ing?" She pulled on his nose again, until her hand slid down his face.


"I don't buh-believe you."

"I didn't--" She grabbed at his nose again, and he sighed. His breath on her fingers made her laugh again.

"I-I-I'll drink that!" She snatched the glass from his hand and took a swallow, coughing from taking too much.

"Elincia, you are drunk. It's time for bed, come on." He touched her arm and she pulled away.

"I dun wanna go to your room! It smells like… stuff." She could see the words in her mind, but they looked all fuzzy and they kept moving. How did her brain expect her to read when the words kept moving? It didn't make a lot of sense she thought.

"No, I'm taking you to your room." Geoffrey's cheeks flushed, and the color caught her attention. She giggled and held her sides.

"Y-you're blushin' cause you want to take me to your bed. Cause you--" she paused for drama, "looooooooooooove me!" She threw her arms around his neck and snuggled into him. "See? Your heart is, is all fast and thud thud thudy."

Elincia smiled at his silence, and rubbed her nose against his. Her eyes started to cross, staring hard enough to set his face alight if glares could start fires. That thought confused her. "Di-did you know you 'ave a freckle on your nose?"

Geoffrey sucked in a breath and lightly replied, "...yes."

"I like it. It's cuuuute. Like you, 'cept it's just dot." Elincia poked the freckle.

"Thank you?" Geoffrey looped an arm around her waist, as they walked. Elincia's steps were labored and crooked.



"Are you ever gonna ask me ta marry you? What are you? A man or a, a, not a man?" She tried and tried to keep her lips tight but she couldn't and let her giggles slip.

Geoffrey sighed. He helped her walk up the long staircase to her room, but Elincia didn't want to walk anymore. She wanted to be carried. Not that he had a choice; she let her legs give out. Once they reached the top, Elincia was curled against his chest, fingers tangled in his coat and hair hanging over his arm, sound asleep. Her jaw fell open and a crackling--but elegant, of course--snore escaped. Her bedchambers were thankfully unlocked and he angled his way inside. The room was dark, and warmer than the ballroom. Elincia wouldn't release his coat, so he removed it, draping it over her and kissed her brow goodnight.

As he turned to leave, Elincia's eyes flew open and she pounced at him, knocking him on her bed.

"Stay here. You're soft." She kissed his nose, and her grip was brutal. Geoffrey was caught.


"Nighty night."


In the morning, when the sun had risen high enough for it's light to blind the hungover Queen, she woke. The ache in her stomach was almost as bad as the one in her head. Elincia stretched her legs and took a deep breath. The scent wasn't of the previous night's beverages but of spices and leather. It was familiar, comforting. The aches dulled with every breath and she hugged the lump closer to her face.


He stirred next to her, then stiffened. He's awake.

Her drunken logic came flooding back. Of course he should stay. Of course she needed to announce her thoughts about his nose. Of course she needed to play with his nose.



"I… need to vomit."