One step-sister touches another in a way that is welcomed.
The banquet was in honor of Isis. The Festival of the Great Isis was being held, and this banquet would mark the first night of week long festival. During this week it was every Egyptians' duty to pay homage of the goddess of fertility, and of women. Isis was Cleopatra's personal patroness from a very young age, so the palace and people of Alexandria were celebrating in a most feverous manner. Talk of the coming celebrations made Cleopatra sleepy, and Charmain and Iras were dismissed for the night.
The sun betrayed the heavy tapestries of the Queen's bed chamber. Soon Cleopatra began stirring and summoned for Charmain. "What am I to wear this evening?! I need something that will make me look as lovely as Isis." Charmain went to the clothing stores and rummaged through the folds and folds of clothes. "Your Majesty, this would look lovely on you with the right accessories." Charmain held up a sheer white Greek style dress that had sleeves that would hang in gathers on her arms. "Ahhh Charmain! I think that would look wonderful, but do you think Caesar will like it?" Charmain let out a laugh and replied,"Cleopatra, you know that his mouth will drop open when you walk in the room!" Laughing the pair walked to the Pleasure Gardens that were connected to the Queen's apartments, so they could pass the day away.
Night began to fall and Cleopatra was preparing for the banquet. Wearing the sheer white dress, she added a golden shawl that wrapped around one shoulder and fell to the ground behind her. Then, an emerald and gold necklace and earrings were added, along with gold sandals encrusted with diamonds. Cleopatra's hair was curled and worn half up and half down. Iras braided in small delicate white flowers and rubbed scented oil in the roots of Cleopatra's hair. Cleopatra was ready for the banquet, but most of all to see Caesar.
Attention was called and Caesar stood at the head of the banqueting hall awaiting the appearance of Cleopatra. The heavy wooden doors swung open and Cleopatra entered the hall to a number of gasps and many sighs. She was beautiful. That was the thought that crossed everyone's mind, including her own. "Most beautiful, and gracious Queen Cleopatra, please do the honor of starting the dinner for me." Caesar's voice boomed over every other noise and singled Cleopatra out. Cleopatra turned toward the crowd and said, "Guests, and Children of Isis, please take you seats and let the banquet begin." Applause came up and tickled Cleopatra's ears, then an army of servants rushed into the room carrying platters of food. Cleopatra sat on the sofa across from Caesar, and finally got to look at him closely. He wore his Imperator's cloak of a rich purple, and his ceremonial tunic. The food and wine flowed and conversations began to arise.
"Caesar, do you find the food appealing, my Lord?" Cleopatra had noticed that he had not been eating a lot. "Yes, the food is quite nice, but your beauty is overwhelming me. I cannot take my eyes off you." Cleopatra smiled ad secretly longed to the banquet to be over. Cleopatra stood and attention was called to all the guests. "Friends, the dancers and carnival performers are awaiting everyone in the South Courtyard! Please follow the generals and have fun!" With that Cleopatra took her leave and returned to her chamber. Alone.
Cleopatra stood on the balcony overlooking the harbor when she heard someone open her door. Listening to the sounds of the feet pressing the marble floors she knew who it was. Caesar. His gait was already familiar to her. Cleopatra turned around and saw his face. "I thought you would never come Caesar. What took you so long?" Caesar took her in his arms and said, "I had to take care of some concerns brought to me by the generals. Nothing alarming though."
"Oh, I see." Caesar leaned in to Cleopatra's face and kissed her deeply, and whispered in her ear, "I wish to hold you tonight love."
With that he gathered her up in his arms and carried her to the bed.