|Summary:||Right after arriving home, Lord Justin rides up to find Lady Muirenn planting /flowers/ along the road and freaks out a bit.|
|Roost Lane, Terrick's Roost|
|This small lane winds around the west side of town and circles back on itself towards the end. Most of the people that come down to this area are looking specifically for one of the many fine craftsmen that have their shops along this well-kept dirt road.|
|April 25th, 289|
A rider approaches, coming from the green but as he draws nearer it can be seen that he and his horse are wet. Particularly the horse, but it's a fine summer day and both will soon dry. Justin walks the horse now, the grey blowing out his nostrels from a recent good run. The salt smell of the sea is upon them, the iron shod hooves ringing out when they clatter against stones.
Just a bit off of the lane there is similar work going on like what took place in the Four Eagles tower courtyard. Servants and smallfolk work to lay stacked stone for a wall while others work in the soil planting small seedlings and sapling trees. A blanket is spread in what appears to be the center of the endeavor and relaxing upon it, orchestrating it all with radiant smiles and soft words, is the redheaded Mallister maiden. A black veil flutters in the sea breeze exposing now and again the depth and brilliance of her hair. At her side doing some needlework is her elderly Septa. Her maid seems to be nearby as well carrying and fetching as her mistress needs.
Justin lightly lifts the reins and the gelding stops. He sits there from his height upon the horse and watches the goings on for several moments to follow what all is happening besides the repairs to stonework. There he watches for a time before he urges his horse forward once more at the walk. The rider wends his way along the pathway, and likely along the wall to have a look at the work being done until he comes to where the womenfolk are located. Justin halts his grey once more, "What are they planting, Lady Muirenn?"
"Roses, lilacs, some herbs, peonies, some dogwoods, pinks, and other things." Muirenn smiles as she is approached by one of Lord Jerold's sons. Gesturing she says "Minnie, instruct them to plant the roses three footlengths apart. They will grow nicely here with care." Glancing back up to Justin she shields her eyes from the sun and smiles, "Good day Lord Justin. How fare you this afternoon?"
The rider looks a bit incredulous, "You are planting … expensive, but mostly not useful things? Who is paying for this, Lady Muirenn? Why not apple and pear trees against hunger? Nut trees for shade, herbs for medicinals? Who will keep the smallfolk from coming to cut them down for wood to burn?" Just looks rather baffled as she seems to be having these people plant things one would find in a castle garden, not that he's terribly wise in what all of the plants are she just named. Far from it. The Terrick Lord draws a slow breath, likely trying to remind himself that people won't always be hungry here as many of them are right now. "Forgive me. With so much /crucial/ work to be done to see to the most needful of basic necessities, this seems like an odd thing to wasting valuable funds and labour upon when there are yet families with no homes, Lady Muirenn."
Roses! Roses of all things cost a bloody fortune, lest they be the wild things that grow sometimes along roadsides full of briars and small flowers. Justin skims a hand through his hair to strip it out of his eyes, "Whever did you even get these things? We are not a wealthy house to errect public gardens, Lady. Especially not out here along a common roadside." Justin looks rather appalled and that's not like him at all. And he may be angry, "The funds spent to buy and bring these things here could fill wagons full of food! The folk you have planting them could be helping to raise timbers for homes!" The gelding has picked up on his dissaproval for the horse's head goes high and he moves around, then backs and turns when Justin checks the gray's forward progress. It would appear that Muirenn's project has made the young Terrick Lord angry.
"You must have missed the herb and vegetable garden in the courtyard, though I find that difficult to believe." Muirenn says icily. Pushing herself up, she dusts off of her skirts and does not continue until she is done. Where a moment before her demeanor was warm and welcoming, she is now closed and cold, "Every plant here is either a cutting or seedling that I made specifically for here from my own plants in the Seagard gardens. There is no expense to the Terricks or the small folk who live here." Hands reach back to straighten her veil, "This is a place to memorialize the people who were lost in the seige. Even things of beauty have a use Lord Justin, and while you may be shocked…the servants assisting here are Mallisters, not Terricks. Once most of the heavy digging and lifting is done I will take over all of the work myself as I have done in the more practical herb garden." There is a pause as her grey eyes give you a glacial glare, "And you probably also do not know that there is 1 Seagard fisherman, 2 Seagard Huntsmen, and stores from my *OWN* people for *your* people…we did not broadcast that though for your father is proud and I did not wish to hurt him by feeling that he could not provide for me."
Justin turns his horse around sharply in a tight circle when the gelding starts to fight him, wanting to GO! The horse is cued into his rider's tension and anger. The rider however does try to listen and hear Muirenn's explanation. Justin turns his head around as the horse circles to keep his gaze upon the young woman. Her words may somewhat mullify him, yet his mouth is a thin, hard line. Justin says not a word more, focusing on quieting his horse. As well as his uncharactoristic anger. "I did not miss it, Lady Muirenn. You certainly have our thanks for it. Herbs and vegetables are useful things, lives can depend upon them and those who know how to use them." His voice is lowered, no larger nearly as sharp. Justin gives the grey his head a little but continues to turn the horse, letting it walk. "You have my apology, Lady Muirenn. Ever since I returned, all I dwell on is how to repair a great many ills with far too few people or resources, to aid my brother and father in this matter. I … hope you will … forgive my … misunderstanding." There is still anger there, though now some of it may be directed at himself. Justin's mouth is yet hard.
"I was *here* during the siege. Such horrors I never dreamed of. I was the one who assisted the Maester as chirgeon and herbalist." Muirenn's voice lashes haughtily, "Though you apparently seem to feel I have no real inner common sense, I assure you that I do. How to help with the rebuilding, how to ease the pain of sadness, how to rebuild so that some problems we encountered during the seige will not be repeated should, Seven forbid, we face another seige situation….these are all questions that weigh on me heavily. And let me assure you that these Mallister men.." She gestures to the ones working at the wall and digging the soil, "Will be helping rebuild houses. OH! And I almost forgot… I also brought with me a mason from Seaguard who is helping oversee the rebuilding efforts with regard to engineering and stonework and some of the carpentry." Drawing herself up to all 6 feet of her height, she lifts her chin and just studies the angry nobleman, "No, you are not forgiven. You are rude."
Aghast, the Septa just stares and sputters as her charge speaks quite plainly and then murmers, "My Lady, please remember your House and your status." The redhead's eyes spark irritably as she glances at her chaperone, but after an inhale and a long sigh she inclines her head and turns to Justin upon his horse once more, "Forgive my plain speech, while the sentiment remains I perhaps should have phrased it more delicately. Please excuse me." Her back is turned to the Terrick noble as she instructs Minnie, "I will tell Heurtebise to come here to oversee the efforts. Please remain until he arrives, then you may join us in my quarters."
Despite his apology, Justin looks upon the people Muirenn has working as though he still wishes they were planting … things that would yield food. Nonetheless he of all people should not be tearing into a Mallister noblewoman. He lifts a hand to draw it down over his face and rub grit from his brows. "No," he says to the older woman who interrupts, "She is right to chastise me. I do not know what the Lady Muirenn has endured, or does here. I mispoke when I should not have. It is no like me to loose my temper." Justin does not ask for Muirenn's forgiveness again, still angry himself. He puts heels to his horse and gives the grey his head. The horse starts forward and almost at once leaps into the canter, heading down the road towards the tower.