|A Bastard and A Curiosity|
|Summary:||Holden's one, Liliana's another. It's not really a problem.|
|Courtyard - Four Eagles Tower|
|The Courtyard of Four Eagles Tower is floored with a fine grey stone that match the color and tone of the interior structure of the castle's yard. Plants have been potted and placed around the entrances to add some color, the greenery accompanied by several trellises of flowers that climb the support columns. The most prominent structure in the area is the set of large slab steps that lead up to the great oak doors of the Great Hall. Several hallways and accesses lead off into different sections of Four Eagles which makes this the hub of noble activity when court is not being held.|
|25 Jul 289 AL|
Decidedly after dinner and with evening settling in, most of the castle has gone into a sort of relaxed mode, as far as a keep can go. Though some commotion seems to hang in the Courtyard, as one of the guards stands by a man who has just dismounted his grey courser. "Aye, I know I've come an an odd time, an no I've come not t' beg an audience." the man's voice seems to growl out. "I've merely came t' deliver a message for Lady Emylie.." A scowl forming on his face, before he's leaning in. 'Really now, y' don't know her? That's right 'n' fine if you don't. But t'is is from the Lady ERENFORD, fer a Lady Mallister…" A shake of his head "Ah, no I don' need to see it personally, If y' pass it on off that's fine." Apparently whatever talk is going on is heated, over a damned letter.
Indeed, most of the keep is at rest, and even those still working do so at a slower pace. Evidenced, perhaps, by the pair of women making their way from the gardens just off the main courtyard, one carrying a basket, the other s stack of drying racks. A sworn sword walks not far behind, but far enough that he isn't likely to trip over the women nor they him.
And in that quiet, it's not likely that the sound of a warhorse's hooves on cobblestone can or would go unnoticed, nor the sound of raised voices. "Eli, will you take these and set them there?" She indicates a table and benches not far from the pair, and once her hands are unburdened, she begins towards the man still ahorse.
"No I am bloody not going t' get off m' horse t' hand it you? Now you're bein' bloody stubborn.." Holden says before he is reaching for his reigns and pulling back. "Keep yer hand back, boyo." Apparently both guard and knight are not getting a long. Still the knight drops down and places himself close to the guard, though no gesture has been made for a weapon. "Here." And he is holding the thing out, allowing the man to take it. A shake of his head. 'Really now, was that difficult? Truly?" by the rough accent, Ser Holden Rivers, is clearly a man from the Riverlands, and perhaps of a more secluded spot. "I don' know what it bloody well says. I don' read her letters."
Liliana approaches, seeming neither alarmed nor put off by the seeming hostility between the house guard and the man now stepping down from his horse. Elise, ever the vigilant handmaid, hurries back over towards her lady, as soon as her burdens are set down. For her part, Liliana pulls up to a halt a safe distance from the pair, waiting, apparently, for a brief break in the conversation before she interjects herself. Well, that or she's waiting to see when the fighting breaks out.
If there is a fight brewing, it's yet to even show. Though clearly there are the warning signs. The guard heads off, leaving the knight to 'wait' right there, as he goes either to find the lady in question or inspect the letter. A frown shows on Holden's face, before he's moving to walk is horse in towards a trough. Clearly, the bastard has no qualms with disregarding that order. But, he is remaining in the courtyard, eyes upon the keep, before he is looking back to where he was, and to the layd left standing there. A blink and he's shaking his head. "Oh, I'm sorry, lass. Didnae see you there."
"You have no need to apologize, ser." Liliana might not recognize the personal coat of arms of the knight, but she can deduce that much at least. "Have no fear of coming into the courtyard, your beast has doubtless carried you far and has need of water. Feed can be brought for him as well, if you require." She pauses, a respectful dip of her head offered, "And if you come with peaceful intent, you are welcome at the Tower."
"Oh my intent is peaceful enough. I believe I am sendin' an invitation up from my cousin t' one of the ladies for sommit." A shrug there from the knight as he looks over Liliana Camden. Eyes simply taking in what is before him. A rub of his jaw and Holden offers a smile after a moment. "Y' a Terrick then?" he asks, as a brow raises. 'An, no need fer feed or such. We're jus' up from th' Roost. He jus' likes t' bloody drink, the greedy glut that he is." And there he shifts his weight as one hand hooks to his belt. "Ser Holden." she did guess correctly. "Rivers."
A shake of her head is answer enough to the question of her House name, "Only by affection, if it pleases. I am Liliana Camden, ward of the Lord of the Roost. I am pleased to have met you, Ser Rivers." With the introductions made, she changes direction, of a sort, moving closer to the courser, "Then he has the vice of many a man, does he not? Though I think his overindulgences will not be so difficult for him. Has he a name?" Girls, they love horses, it's a sort of fact of life, isn't it?
"Then he surely has my thirst, because he feels th' need t' get wet anytime we're able." A chuckle there from Holden as he turns to regard the courser, allowing the lady to come further in and closer. "y' can touch him. He doesn't bite often." he adds, before he is scratching the back of his neck. Whether or not the name has registered with the man, doesn't show. instead he simply nods. "His name is Bitter, m'lady. After th' beer."
"I will remember to always keep the trough full then, if you should should come again to the keep. Then neither he nor you shall want for drink." Yes, there's humour in her voice, as she pauses, a short distance from the horse. But she'll wait until the horse is finished drinking, before she moves closer, not wanting to startle the beast, most likely. She, after all, is a stranger. "I am not that familiar with beer, I'm afraid. It sounds not at all a pleasant variety."
"Bitter is fine, if it's supposed t' be a bitters. You'd have t' try it. I am no fan of it, personally. I prefer a fine thick ale, or a whisky an wine. However, he likes it." nodding the horse. "So that is all that matters." There is a bit of a sidelong glance given over to the woman before he's chuckling. "So, you're th' last one?" A pause there. 'No offense, but you are?"
"I think I will have to take your word for it…or perhaps his. I have never had a taste for it." Liliana's tall enough that she needn't stand on tiptoe to reach out a hand to the horse, offering it to sniff first, before she moves to pat his neck. She's careful, to be sure. A war horse is not a truly docile animal, but she moves as a woman with some experience in horses. Her hand has just settled on the courser's neck, when the question comes. There is no change in her expression, but remains as open and neutral as before, "If you mean if I am the last of my name, then yes, I am that Camden."
Holden nods. "My condolences." he adds, though there is no great tears or wrougtin' of teeth an all that. Instead he watches the Courser, freeze and tense, before he seems to go back to drinking. "Well that's a rare t'ing." he mutters before he is looking back towards the woman, keeping an eye on her hand and the horse. "On many t'ings. Not meanin' t' rub grim in th' wound 'n' all." he adds as an afterthought. "If y' wish, you can call me a bastard. You'd be right."
"Thank you." And that's said just as evenly. For the moment, Liliana seems quite content simply to stroke the length of Bitter's neck, venturing as far as his shoulder, but always careful to watch him for signs of shyness, "He is a fine animal. Quite beautiful, in his way." She looks up, her hand once again falling still, "You haven't. There is no salt in a simple question. And not asking the question will not change the fact. Nor will I call you a bastard."
Eyes follow Liliana's hand there for a moment, before he is nodding there. Still the horse seems content to drink and then stand and be petted. A slight chuff is given, but nothing to denote displeasure. Holden for the most part chuckles and shakes his head. "A big flirt he is." nodding at the war horse, before he is looking back. "That's different. Most folks would have been ready to call th' part." a clicking of his tongue. "Do you like it here? Th' Tower an all?"
"And why should he be any different than any good looking man?" A smile, and a final pat to the horse's neck, before she steps back, giving man and horse their room. "My own mare is every inch as one might describe the typical woman; stubborn, and vain and willful. There are some traits which are not solely the realm of human beings. As for calling you a bastard, you are one, or else you would not bear the name Rivers, so what would calling you what you are do, exactly?" A lift of her shoulders in a light shrug, as if to say she doesn't see the point, before she turns her attention to the question, "It has been my home for nearly four years. And the Terrick's have been good to me, even in the wake of all that has befallen the Roost."
"Well, because he is a horse." He adds with a grin, before he is chuckling, as if that one statement cleared it all up. It doesn't but that doesn't slow him down. Instead the knight nods on. "Make y' feel better? Sometimes when folks hurt-they like to hurt others. Damned thing about bein' a person." A sniff and he rubs his nose. "Well good. I'd hate t' find myself with a House, let a lone a family that did not care, aye?"
Grinning Holden takes a step closer in Liliana's direction. Content to let the horse wait by the trough. "Stubborn vain an willful. Tell me, Lady. Does she take after her rider?" A bit of teasing. "As I often say Bitter an I share qualities."
"I have never been the sort to live by that frame of mind, to hurt others as if it might have some easing effect on my own pain. I have found that it rarely does, but rather it ends up causing you more pain and the person you attack less." A glance back to the keep proper, before she looks back, "I have no doubt that that is not a rare situation. We Houses are political animals, and I have no doubt that more often than not, when the pieces on the game board are moved, the pawns rarely end up happy." As the knight approaches, Liliana steps back, keeping the appropriate distance, easily and naturally, "I would say two out of three. Though I hope that I have grown out of my childhood ways."
Holden quirks a look over at Liliana for a moment, and offers a faint smile. Only there does he seem to nod, before looking on back towards his horse for a moment. "I wouldn't know. I did not know you as a child." Holden says after a moment. "But, I will take your word on it." Chuckling the knight doesn't pursue distance closing any further. Content to stand where he is. "I find I usually end up happy, but I don't consider myself a pawn or rabble. Likely, light horse." he adds with a glance back. "Though I could be wrong."
"But you are only a bastard, and do not figure overmuch into the game of Houses." There is no heat in the word, Liliana using it simply as a matter of course. "And in that you have a freedom and a luxury that no nobleborn ever will. It is an odd thing. In one way, we have freedoms and privileges that only rarely could a commonborn ever match, and yet in other ways, we are prisoners to the system into which we have been born. A common born man or woman may marry as they will, live as they please, do as it suits them. A noblewoman, for example, will marry the man chosen for her, whether she cares for him or not, will live where he lives with no say in the matter and must live always following the rules that govern her rank and station, lest she find herself cast down and disgraced." Again, that light lift of her shoulders as if to say, 'That is just the way of things.'
OOC Note: Log ended abruptly, due to router issues. Assume neither killed the other.