Spent most of last night brainstorming for Jonquil’s story. This is how ideas become workable scenes, settings, and characters for me. Partially organized, partially a free write, all just whatever I could pull out of the ether.
Cirque du Volente – Circus of desires?? Cirque du vol – flying circus
Eve: Lady of the House, Lamia
Faust: her lover, vampire
Sivere: Lieutenant (2nd in command), a serpent (“Scowl”)
Joie: Lieutenant (3rd in command) also a serpent (“Joy”)
Rhapsody and Sonata – music, sirens?
Jonquil (Jean) – a fey?
A dancing bear
Some stuff with horses – centaurs?
lion taming- another shapeshifter, so no danger to the audience volunteer
The Tent- is plain heavy cream canvas, splashed all over with colour. There have been murals, there have been abstracts – Sonata even once painted a musical score on one panel. The original material has all been replaced by now, and as panels fade or are damaged, they are replaced. The youngest member has privilege over the newest canvas, and may do with it as they see fit, including giving the rights of it over to another.
Tickets- A one person litter serves as they ticket booth (and is also done up with more finery for Mme. Evelyn’s entrance). Two torches are set behind it to serve as beacons, as shows are opened at dusk.
Costumes- Eve wears practically nothing, the image of seduction. Heavily ornamented, like a belly dancer, long dark hair worn loose. The idea of snake scales worked into the outfits, always. Faust prefers the classic gentleman magician look, and usually does his act with a lovely assistant to set up the “obstacle course” for his hypnotized volunteer. Everyone else wears a hybrid of brightly colored, abstract patterned spandex leotards and classic clown costuming – DRAMATIC is the idea here. Also VIVID and DISORIENTING. I believe Faust does all the beast taming, but I could be wrong. No one is standing up to volunteer for that.
The main event- begins with the parade of patrons, each person being welcomed into the act by the troupe moving in and among them as they wait for tickets and take their seats. Faust will “sip” the crowd as they enter, feeding their desires to Joie, who has taught herself illusion spells. Sivere (Sive) has focused his serpents magic on the fire aspect, and is in charge of the fireworks that mark the end of the show. Anyways. As the show opens, Joie condenses all the illusions down into the center point, and Faust appears in the smoke as it clears. He whispers to the audience as the lights fall, bidding them welcome and spinning them the tale of their desires. I believe each person hears something slightly different as he whispers, mostly the important part is that he bear their attention while the troupe files in and mounts to the sky, because the first act is always an aerial one. As Faust winds down, he names the circus “Cirque du volente, cirque du VOLS!” and on that note the lights go up and everyone starts flying, dancing or what have you. The opening ends with Eve bourne in on the litter, and Faust making a show of kissing her hand and doting on her and whatnot. She is clearly the Queen of the circus. Eve will then open the show with Sive and Joie, dancing with them while Faust speaks more of illusion. He’ll throw another flashbomb (or Joie does magic, whatever) and the two serpents will shift and Eve will dance “alone” for a bit, charming them. Eventually, she has them climb the center pole, and another flash will have them transform into humans again, embracing around the pole.
Any number of acts may follow, ranging from seductive to funny, aerial or ground. There is bear or lion taming, depending on what they have on hand, and that bit always ends with a volunteer from the audience giving the beast a kiss, which transforms them into a human again. There’s Jean’s aerial juggling, which is always fun. Rhapsody and Sonata do a dance in suspended hoops, and there’s a tightrope act that ends with a woman diving from the wire. She wears something like wingsuit that looks like a butterfly and glides down safely to the floor that way, then dances with those wings. There’s an equine act where I get the feeling that centaurs or something like them are involved, but I got nothing on that one yet. Maybe I need to talk with Lotte. I’m wondering if they’re not like dryads, but with horses somehow? I have no idea. I’ll poke at it some more.
I know at some point, Faust will hypnotize an audience member to defy reality. In that state, he gets them to walk over a bed of spikes, leap through a wall of flame, and walk on water – all of these might be illusions from Joie. She’s a powerful little lady. Kinda scary.
They also do ribbon dancing, vertical tango, fire dancing, sword dancing – whatever skills the troupe has to display at the moment. Jonquil’s special gift is reflexes and balance, which tells me NOTHING about what he is.