The rituals of Courtly Love occupy a large part of Noble's attention and sometimes form a major part of the relations with a Liege's court. With artistry and ritualized courtship it lends itself to the fae sense of intrigue and love of romance. Whether participating or spectating, most members of a court enjoy taking part in the subtleties of courtly love.
The Dance Edit
Romance among the Kithain embodies a rarified and elegant dance of skill and seduction, appreciated as much for its form as for its content. Both male and female recognize its usefulness in manipulating others into doing their will and take every opportunity and advantage to prove their skill in affairs of the heart.
Courtly love expresses itself as an elaborate pas de deux between the "ardent suitor" and the "bashful beloved." In the Medieval and Renaissance era when mortals practiced this, the suitor was usually male and the beloved female. The more liberal Kithain make no such gender demands. A strict protocol watches over the steps of the dance, from the suitor's declaration of intent to the pursuit of the beloved, to the usual polite but firm rejection and period of intense mourning for lost love... which simply comes before starting the whole cycle again. At every step of the dance the troubadours hover in the wings (if not center stage), ready to serenade the beloved in private or proclaim the worthiness of the suitor in public.
The courtship dance involves stylized flirtation with the beloved alternately accepting and declining the suitor's favors, refining the art of teasing and encouragement to a high level. The suitor has no rights except those given by the beloved and is expected to prove his or her ardor at every possible opportunity. Poems and love songs, heroic deeds, and staunch patience in hopes of even a smile or kind word are all parts of the suitors steps. Love that comes cheaply, or that expresses itself gracelessly, isn't worth having.
Courting usually takes place in secret but can at times become a mini drama staged for the whole court to see. At first the beloved should reject the suitor, citing political or personal differences as the reason. Then it is the job of the suitor to cajole, convince, woo, or win the reversal of that rejection.
If the whole dance does end in the full passion of amour (which doesn't necessarily include the sexual act) between suitor and beloved, the usually swear oaths of love to each other. Until the bond is broken both lover and beloved remain inextricably joined in spirit. Only Banality can separate them. They help each other regardless of personal risk, difference in Court, or conflicting loyalties. It has even been known for one lover to sacrifice themself for the other.
Romantic Legacies Edit
Along with their Court Legacies, many fae possess strong romantic personalities also divided among the fae's Seelie and Unseelie natures. As with Court Legacies, Romantic Legacies fit with the changeling's court affiliation. Characters have both a Primary and a Secondary Romantic Legacy. Not all fae have Romantic Legacies, just those who allow romance to play an active roll in their lives. Romantic Legacies are complementary to court Legacies, though in some cases they may override them.
See Romantic Legacy for a list of possible legacies.