|A New Way|
|Summary:||Fenrir, Einar and the Flint force practice a new method of fighting, under Anders' watchful eye.|
|Date:||3 February 2012|
|Related Logs:||Seagard, all.|
|Waterfront - Seagard|
|Seagard's waterfront was once the gateway to a bustling port, both for the Mallister naval fleet and merchant ships that docked here from all corners of the River coast, West, and even lands farther south. The Ironborn's initial attack on the city laid it low, however, and the wreckage of that initial assault still litters the sea. The Mallister fleet was demolished in that first wave, and the blackened remains of its once-proud war galleys float off the docks. The merchant stalls, customs stations and seedy dockside taverns that once thrived here are largely burnt as well, the Ironborn having looted and gutted them before they were driven from this part of the city. The dock - one of Seagard's three major ones - is still intact, however, and there's enough raw space in the stone buildings that couldn't be burned to house supplies.|
|February 3rd, 289 A.L.|
You did something because it had always been done, and the explanation was "but we've always done it this way." A million dead people can't have been wrong, can they? — Terry Pratchett, The Fifth Elephant
The moon has failed to rise this night; or rather, it has, but so have the rainclouds building off the coast. They roll in, heavy and ponderous, obscuring the stars behind their thick wet shroud. It is 'infantry weather', miserable and clammy, the air damp with a slow drizzle that never quite builds to the downpour one might expect - and even hope for, for at least a downpour promises an end in sight. White caps are visible on the waves out beyond the mighty stone breakwaters of the Mallister harbor, and the wind continually promises a gale that does not yet materialize. Closer to home, the sounds of battle are evident, sword and axe ringing against shield, with roared orders and splashes as men fight along the wharves - and along the rocky shelf of beach.
But this is no true battle, evidenced by the crowds of Seagard citizens who have gathered to watch, some cheering for one side, some for the other. The Flint banner waves atop one of the wharves, giving a hint as to which House might be staging a mock battle in such conditions. Upon inspection, details emerge.. On the wharf, two narrow shieldwalls face off one against the other - twenty men on each side collide in a fierce mock battle, swaying and shoving at one another, often sending men splashing into the shallow water to either side. Blunt weapons are in evidence, but there is still a trickle of injured from this fight, trailing back to be seen to by their comrades - cracked heads, shallow gashes, a few unfortunates with broken bones. Such is war - risks must be taken. Along the beach, another forty men - twenty on each side - have paired off in an even more difficult struggle. Twenty of them line up, chest-deep in the water, forming a crude shield-wall and attempting to carve their way past the defenders and establish a beach-head on the shore, as though they were leaping from the decks of longships. Serjeants scream instruction, struggling to maintain order as the men perform the unfamiliar tasks - the fighting takes place in thigh-high waves, making men clumsy and cold.
And above all of this, a solitary man is on horseback. Fenrir Viiding watches the two battles with equal attention, riding between them to shout instruction and observation to his subordinates. He is soaked to the bone, having been at this for longer than any of his men, but his features are alight with the sheer focused joy of a craftsman honing his skill. Behind him, further up the shore, several fires have been lit. A massive tea-pot stews on one, and around others huddle the lucky men who have already completed their night's training, trying hard to dry off before crawling into their bedrolls. It is a grueling night, but the men seem in high spirits, encouraged both by the novelty of their task and the child-like glee of their commander, who often leaps off his horse and rushes to one or the other on foot, the better to demonstrate precisely what he expects to see. "No, no-no-no-no-no! Are you idiots? Look at yourselves! You're wading ashore like ducklings, right onto Ironborn axes! Come /on/, get it right, form up! AGAIN. Jory, /keep them tight/!"
It's seemed to Anders that in the last couple of days that morale has climbed higher, and it may be a conceit, but it's one he's willing to take in that it's partially due to his continuing healing. Well, that and the fact that finally he and his Master at arms has finally been able to speak at any length on the subject since he's been laid up, and it seems to have given both men that 'new lease on life', even if the old one hasn't yet expired, as it were.
Anders has managed to mount his horse, his courser, and his steed, sensing the fact that he's still more than a little sore, has not moved from a slow jog in consideration. Now, however, that he comes to the wharf to witness the battle, albeit a little late (couldn't be helped, sadly), he moves his horse towards Fenrir, a hooded cloak a concession to the weather.. and possibly to his wife as well. At the exhortations, the yells, the insults, the Young Lord grins.. though he doesn't say anything specifically about it. Instead, he's curious, "Have they succeeded?" Yet? "And tell me that that group," he points towards the huddled few near the fire, "aren't dead. I would be sorely disappointed."
Somewhere between those warming fires and the activity on the main body of the shore, Orlagh is watching the goings-on with.. well, more interest than one might expect from a handmaiden, that's for sure. This isn't just idle spectating or duty-bound and half-hearted cheering for the men. The girl seems genuinely interested in their progress in practicing this new form of combat. Wrapped in a woolen cloak, she's still recognisable enough to those of the Flint entourage by the thigh-length braid of white-blonde draped down her back, and those who are dismissed from the actual fighting approach her with weary smiles in passing, some begging direction to a bowl of hearty broth, or spiced tea. Both have been prepared, under her supervision. Everyone knew about the training tonight, it would seem. Down to even a lowly servant.
Every now and then, her rapt attention is broken by a smirk at the antics of the Master-at-Arms, though she knows well her place and doesn't distract those still entangled in their tiring art in any way. The approach of another horse, though, does draw her gaze, particularly as she hears the familiar tones of the Young Lord. And, whether he notices it or not, she dips in a low, respectful curtsey toward Anders as he draws toward the bustle of his men. She's bound to be cold, standing out in the elements at this hour. But she's apparently here for the long haul. With the proper gesture of greeting made, she clutches her cloak more tightly at her throat with one pale hand and shakes aside the errant wisps of her locks as the brisk seabreeze tosses them about her features.
"Oh, no, Lord! Those are the lads who went through the training earlier. Just letting them warm up a bit, is all." Fenrir quickly reins in his horse as he spots his Lord approaching, a warm grin spreading across his rain-splattered features. The genuine pleasure that *he* exhibits at the sight of his master on horseback once more mirrors that of the soldiers warming themselves by the fire, who one-by-one rise to their feet in respect for the resilient Young Lord of the Flints. "It's going well. We've had one break-through so far, down on the wharves. None on the beach, but it's to be expected - that's a tough fuc.. tough job, Lord, and I don't know as I could do it better than Jory on our second night." His grin spreads a bit as he looks toward Orlagh, acknowledging her with a deep nod of his head.
"And the logistics, Lord, are working like a dream come true. Mistress Orlagh here has stew -and- tea set up for all the lads coming off the line - frankly, Lord, I dunno that I could do this without her. The boys'd flat rebel." And he's not joking. Amateurs talk strategy, but experts talk logistics, after all. He raises his voice a bit. "Mistress Orlagh! You and your ladies done a -grand- job. Better'n I could've hoped for!"
It's dark, and there are sometimes when that can actually be an advantage for a marksman, especialy when all his targets are helpfully lined up infront of him rather than spread out. Being careful to keep shoreward of his own wall, Einar is crouched down behind a rocktrying to pick out Jory from the mass of dark figures. His trsuty crossbow is fully prepped and loaded with a blunt quarrel, ready to try and take the commander of the landing party out. A command is yelled from the other lines and spots his man. Breath. Aim. Loose. Move. He smiles briefly to himself, glad to have the chance to fight with something other than a sword for a while although he only tkaes a moment to look and see if his shot was successful when he's behind a new rock, a little close to his own line this time. Less good for shooting from, but far safer for reloading and picking targets.
Anders inclines his head at those rising to him; give them the pleasure in knowing that all is well.. and he glances at the Mistress Orlagh with her courtesy offered, and he keeps his gaze in that direction has his friend and Master at Arms explains. The grin remains on his face as he considers, and he lowers his voice slightly in the jest, "Then when are you in the water?" There's no need for a response, however; he knows that either he was before, or more than likely looked at the harbour papers. Anders has a copy of the papers for the Isles himself, and the hazards there.
"Orlagh has been a godsend. Almost makes up for the statement my sister is trying to make," and his voice remains low, the grin being replaced with that sly smile. He knows his sister, as does Fen. And he can say what the pair are thinking. "She's become some woman. A far cry, hmmm?" In the field, Anders has been given a new appreciation for good help, apparently. And.. an eye. "Lady Corrie is beside herself, not knowing if she's coming or going. Eventually the two will settle into a single path." Or he'll take the mistress as his personal.. valet, after a fashion. Or, and Anders looks back at his Master, "Some woman."
Einar's quiet, and while Anders knows he's gone to join the battle, Anders has no idea where his squire has gotten to. Arrows flying in the dark are unseen and deadly.. soon enough, Einar will make his presence felt, if not known, he's sure.
It's hard to say whether the fair-haired girl is either pleased that the efforts of she and the other ladies has been noticed.. or embarassed at having been singled out so brazenly, for the eyes of the newly-arrived Lord. Regardless of which it is, Orlagh accepts the mention graciously, as ever. Another, shallower curtsey is offered toward Fenrir, by way of response; acknowledging his words without comment upon them. Presumably her sometime-ward, the Lady Cordelya, is abed by now. One would hope. So this is time that the maid should likely be spending in sleep, also. But the lure of observing this was apparently too much. That or, of course, there was a beachful of hungry mouths to feed… and Anders likely wouldn't approve of his entire force being reduced to shivering, wind-chilled wrecks, come morning.
While some of the other servant girls are mingling among the numbers already relieved of training - no doubt offering a different sort of warmth altogether, some of them - Orlagh seems quite content to remain set apart and to pay heed to the lessons ongoing on the sands. Why exactly a handmaid might need to know anything of swordplay on less firm footing is a curiosity, perhaps. She's also blissfully unaware of the conversation between the two men, thank all the Gods. The words are simply carried away from her on the chill night air.. and her blue eyes have already wandered from Fenrir and Anders, both; saving her the knowledge of that gaze lingering upon her, in profile.
Now then, did anyone tell Anders that Tia is here? Or Einar? Or … well, does anyone other than Cordelya know yet? After arriving and having a nice long chat with Corrie, Tia took a nap, because it was a long worriesome trip here. But that nap in the middle of the day? Well, it means that now the widowed lady Flint is wide awake, much to the dismay of her Sworn who is awake and accompanying her. She's dressed all in black, mourning obviously, and even her hair is covered at this point, though how long that will last is anyone's guess. She heard which way to go, and her guard definitely knows, much as he didn't want to bring her. She's carrying a lap harp, having felt the need to bring it along with her. As she nears, her steps slow, as she watches to see what is going on.
"Some woman," agrees Fenrir softly, his gaze still on Orlagh. He glances aside at Anders, smiling crookedly at the man. "Here I was thinking your sister sent her for me, Anders. You saying she had an.. what's the word.. underhand motive?" His grin, and the informal way he addresses the Lord, hint at a tight bond between the two men - and that he knows full well what Anders' sister truly had in mind by the move. Of course, he keeps his voice hushed with the overwhelming familiarity - none of the men hear it. Something is nagging at the corner of his mind, some alarum, when he glances over at Anders. He clears his throat gently. "..Lord, is all -well- with you and your Lady? I know it ain't my.. Oh, shit. One moment, Lord." The intimate moment is broken.
"YOU-MISBEGOTTEN-SONS-OF-FARMERS! Your Captain's down! /WHAT DO YOU DO?/" And sure enough, Jory /is/ down, flailing in the surf, having been felled by a mysterious crossbow bolt that -clangs- noisily off his iron cap and leaves the man half-stunned. Like having a huge bell go off right in your ears. "OH! You BREAK, is that what you do?" As the assault falters, Fenrir gallops down toward the beach, roaring in his best leathery voice. "I LOVE IT! AYE! GRAND! WHEN /I/ DIE, why not just go home, you slug-a-bed children with sticks. FORM UP. Run it /again/." Rage subsided, Fenrir trots back toward Anders through the rain. "Anyhow.. What was I saying, Lord?" But his gaze is distracted by Orlagh again, and then - somewhat more surprisingly - by the emergence of Tiaryn.
With the opposing line floundering Einar steps up to the defenders and fires a few bolts into the attacking masses before Fenrir can restore a bit of order and receives a clap or two on the shoulder for his troubles. It's only a momentary relaxation though, as the other begin to reform, but he takes advantage to grab a swing of water from the skin at his belt. He briefly ponders a change of tctic, and haivng a go with his sword for a turn, but he's enjoying himself as is, and besides Jory hasn't got past him yet… "Here we go again," he mutters to thos around him as those further down the beach move up again, "lets see how long it takes them to spot me if I just keep moving around behind you lads shall we?" He's not particularly targetting Jory this time, not unless the big man makes a target of himself, just taking what time he has and going for a selection from the opposing forces.
Orlagh is right— it wouldn't do for the men to be chilled and useless when the battle truly begins in earnest. However, some of the men making merry, even though they're 'off' earns them a high-pitched whistle from their Young Lord, followed by a look. Just not now.. back at the camp, but.. not now. Anders holds reins lightly, and pulling back slightly, it brings his courser a step, two back. He's done there, and he turns his attention back to his Master at Arms and the tableau before him.
The fact that Tia has arrived might have been mentioned during the one or two ministrations for his back and neck in the form of massages, but truth be told, either he's grunting in pain, or he falling asleep. There really isn't much in the way for conversation; at least on his part, anyway. The movement of a figure in black doesn't quite get his attention yet, but when it does register..
Anders barks a laugh at the sotto words, dark eyes gleaming in amusement. "Ulterior motives," his words are almost a whisper, "for me, maybe?" It's another jest, teasing the man who is closer to him than his own brother is. "At least that's what—" Suddenly, however, the troops require immediate attention — particularly when Jory's head is rung like a bell. Ander's brows shoot up with surprise, going so far as to remove the hood of his cloak, which sets the rain upon his head directly, to search for that elusive figure that he knows is there. "Where the hell is he?" Einar is tricky.. but he'll appear for tea at the end, he's certain.
The numbers around the fires further upshore gradually dwindle, as do those of Seagard who had gathered to watch. Night time? Fine. Rain? Not so much. Many retreat to the comfort of their bedrolls, a lucky few with pleasurable company. But still, Orlagh remains, keeping her composed vigil and not seeming to much mind the rain that falls from the heavens and sets to soaking her pale blonde hair. Women of the North are made of sterner stuff than that. Shrugging her cloak a little higher about her throat, arms folded comfortably beneath the drape of thick wool, the handmaiden chuckles softly to herself as she watches Fenrir career off down the beach. Well, he never was known for his subtlety, that one.
Stealing a sidelong glance toward Anders, perhaps to gauge his reaction to the sudden flurry of activity from his soldier, the girl catches new movement from the corner of her eye, turning further to better acquaint herself with the source. Ahh, the Lady Tiaryn. Upon recognising the noblewoman - hardly difficult, in that attire, despite the odd hour of her appearance on the faux-battlefield - Orlagh lowers herself in a shallow curtsey, flitting her blue eyes downward with proper respect, a quiet smile lingering about her lips. The young lady has seemed, thus far, perfectly pleasant. And why shouldn't she want to watch the action? Orlagh is, after all.
Tia continues to move along quietly over to the group. Orlagh's curtsey draws her attention first, but Tia merely inclines her head to that, as she continues over to her good-cousin. "My Lord Anders," she says, as she arrives, her gaze studious as she watches him for a long moment. "You are looking better than I expected, I must say." She then turns her gaze to look at Fenrir, though it does take her a moment or three to recognize him. Her eyes widen, and then, just to make sure, she says, "Fenrir? Corrie said - " her words cut off and then she chuckles softly, though it's a sort of dull laugh that does not brighten her eyes. "I almost didn't recognize you."
"Lord.. Lady Tiaryn.." Fenrir jerks his chin toward the lady approaching, then looks back over the lines. On the wharf, the makeshift battle has ended in victory for the attackers - the good guys win, for once. "Oi! Jak! Get 'em off the wharf, get 'em tea, and get 'em to bed. And well /done/, lads." Successful work - and hard work - deserve rewards, after all. Meanwhile, the beach sections.. earn a glower. Fenrir mutters under his breath to Anders as the Lord gently chastises those resting, "These poor bastards're wishing they were at war right now, Lord, instead of just playing at it. It's easier. Watch this."
"Alright! Jory! You take 'em in hard, this time. At a /run/!" He chuckles nastily as the men groan, knowing all too well how hard it is to run in full kit -and- underwater. Again, more softly to Anders, he says "..Can't ride them too hard, though. Just a moment, Lord.." He leaves Anders to greet Tiaryn, riding over to Orlagh's side as Einar and Jory reorganize their men for the newest push. Jory can be heard promising a gold stag to the man who actually gets to hit Einar, but it all seems to be in 'good fun'.
"Mistress Orlagh.." Fenrir leans out of his saddle, grinning down at the young woman. "I admire greatly that you're here, and all you done for the lads. It speaks well of you, truly does, but I need one more thing." May the Old Gods have mercy, does the man never stop asking for favors? What now? He winks as he continues. "Could you have one of your ladies gather up a couple of the lads that're finished and have them go into town, requisition a keg of ale for this group here? They've earned it." But when Tiaryn addresses -him-, the master-at-arms freezes for a moment, seeming genuinely surprised and a bit nonplussed. He straightens in the saddle, then delivers a bow, hesitantly. His tone is appropriate for addressing the bereaved woman. "Lady Tiaryn. I grieve with you, for your loss."
Einar glances over his shoulder at Fenrir as he gives Jory his newest instruction. CHange of plan then, take out the gobby ones. Quickly. "Remember they're knackered and this run is going to take a load out of them, he mutters to his own line, not wanting to give too much away by shouting all his plans. "Hold firm and when they're about halfway to you I want two orderly paces backwards. Make 'em think they're going to have to run for longer." He glances to one of the sergeants, "Huw, you call 'em, I'l try and get Jory again, or a few of the less tired looking ones at least, although if they're coming at a run I'll have less time." Moving down the line a bit he checks that everyone is aware of the plan, keeping half an eye on Jory all the time though, ready to loose at the man as soon as the charge begins.
Anders is astride as well, and with his hood down, he can see a little better, and thankfully, the hood of his woolen cloak rides his neck some, so the wide pink newly gained scar isn't immediately evident. "Certainly," is given to his Master at Arms as the other man rides off, and with the sound of Tia's voice from near him, he will have to confess that she'd startled him. "Lady Tiaryn?" He causes his courser to back one more step in order to see her fully, and his head inclines in greeting. "Good cousin. This is no weather to be out, though the theatre before us is worth such a fee." His tones are light, though the seriousness of the exercise certainly isn't lost on him. "Better than expected?" He bounces his head, gently and carefully, but he acknoweldges it and answers. "It was concerning, certainly, but all is well. Full faculties.. no lingering effects that I have seen.. so the gods have chosen to bless me with continued health." As opposed to his friend, Lord Charlton.. but soon enough, he has faith, his friend will be on the mend.
At Fenrir's sotto voiced comment, Anders holds a gloved hand in Tia's direction, and he watches the Flint's measure groan as a group, and while he won't laugh at their discomfort, he does grin as he knows what comes next. Fen isn't a monster, after all..
"Einar! Stop killing my men!" is called out in the dark. He knows if another bolt flies and he hits one of the men heading up, it'll be from his squire. And it's back to Tia, or rather, her sword as he holds a hand out to the lady, "Give her a leg up.." so the widow can be on horseback..
The gaze of the blue-eyed handmaid trails absently in the wake of the darkly-attired Lady for a moment, watching her approach the Young Lord. But then the vague sensation of attention being directed her way has Orlagh looking back toward the beach.. and consequently, the approaching Master-at-Arms, astride his courser. As he draws to a halt in the sand, she extends one palm toward the creature's muzzle, in habitual gesture. Horses are a comfort; something familiar in the midst of all this strangeness. The man's addressing her has her gaze rising, however, as he leans - perhaps unnecessarily - out of the saddle to establish the illusion of a private discussion. "Master Fenrir.." The greeting is given in kind, albeit with gentle question in her soft-spoken tone, and she falls quiet to pay heed to what he's asking of her this time.
As it's made known, though, a slow smile curves across her lips and she ventures a half step closer, patting lightly at the large horse's sweat-dampened shoulder. "..they needn't travel so far. I already had some barrels brought up earlier and set within the stores." A brief pause, before she admits, "..Lord Anders oft enjoys a mug of ale, with dinner. As do you, Master Fenrir, if I recall..?" Perhaps in a touch of private jest, she quirks a brow up at the handsome soldier. "I thought perhaps it might save you simply having to venture out to that inn you keep mentioning."
As his attention shifts to the young lady, though, Orlagh discreetly increases the distance between herself and the courser, once again folding her arms and simply stepping back a few paces. She'll see to his request. Turning on a booted heel, the blonde carries herself with a long stride toward the nearest cooking-fire, a soft call going to one of her fellows there.
Tia certainly hasn't spotted Einar yet, though Anders' call out to her good brother brings a flash of a smile. "Einar is holding his own, is he?" she says, sounding quite proud for just a moment. She pauses as Fenrir had plans to oversee and people to talk to, waiting for his return, for her to give him another look. There is a tightness about her features still, a sorrow that seems it might not retreat. The harp she has in hand is wrapped against the rain, but still here with her, a security blanket of some sort. "Thank you, Fenrir," she says simply. "I appreciate your sympathy." She takes a breath and then glances over at Anders once more. "But the harp," she objects, not that she minds being on horseback, she is a good rider after all, but more that she would rather keep hold of Lady Isolde's harp. Still, she finds a spot to set the harp, and will accept the lift up so she too is mounted. "I could have brought Gethin down, had I thought," she says, a little chagrined that she did not.
"You are a /wonder/, Mistress Orlagh. Already had the ale laid by. By the Oak, what I'd do to have that woman as my supply-train head." Fenrir shakes his head ruefully as he watches Orlagh make her way over to the campfire, seeming genuinely impressed. He watches her a touch too long; the battle is starting anew, down on the beaches, and he is *missing* his instruction. He opens his mouth to shout something, but there is no need. Jory, down in the surf, has his blood up now. "You want'a sleep tonight, boys? /Get me the squire nooooooo—-UMPH./" Another blunt crossbow bolt slams into his chest, knocking him back in the water.
But the damage is done for the defenders - like a swarm of kraken, the 'attackers' wade out of the sea shield-to-shield, in almost perfect unison and at a proper military trot. They're screaming defiance, desperate to get to -bed-, desperate to -eat-, desperate to be -warm-, and they crash on Einar's line like a fury - heading right for the crossbowman. Meanwhile, Jory wades ashore after them in ill grace, growling curses and spitting into the surf.
"YES!" This is the result Fenrir needed to see; he pumps his fist into the air, turning to grin triumphantly at his Lord and Tiaryn, his teeth flashing in the rainy night. "They've done it, Lord, they've done it! Look! They're turning his flank!" He's as excited as a little boy, trotting his courses in a circle as he watches. "Mistress Orlagh better have plenty of ale," the man murmurs more softly as he nears Tiaryn and Anders. "…Cos those lads deserve a -drink-, my Lord, Lady."
Anders holds his hand out for the harp once the Lady Tiaryn is settled on his courser behind him. He leans back a touch, his voice rising so it can be carried back, "Comfortable?" He doesn't mind sharing the horse, certainly. "Even if you had your horse, my lady.. I will say that he's a little short. It's better when you're a little higher up.. you can see better." Besides, that's the little anti-social horse…
Aaaand, down goes Jory again, courtesy of a crossbow bolt. There's Einar! That's gotta smart! Anders resists the urge to wince, and as the defender's line begins to break and the attackers come out, he whistles softly, his attention rapt now, watching. As Fenrir brings his courser closer, the Flint's Young Lord does agree, and fully, "They do indeed, Master Fenrir.. and you need a set of dry clothes, a blanket and some yourself." And he has an idea of how that'll be done as well, though Anders manages to keep a straight face. "We'll have them 'round the fire tomorrow night for a talk, shall we?"
Einar has just about time to reload and fire a second bolt before the swarming attackers make their presence felt. Some poor bastard is going to have a hell of a bruise for taking a hit at such short range but there's little time to pay it much heed. SLinging th bow and resoting to his sword given the range, ANders' squire moves to help shore up the collapsing flank. He is though, but one swordarm among many and while his presence does rally the men a little, the momentum of those coming forwards is just to strong. Its over quickly and apparently, druk with their new victory, it seems some of Jory's force have decided to take their 'captain' at his word and it's only a matter of moments before Einar is unceremoniously dumped into the water beside his oppo. There's no malice in it though, and the two men help each other up before staggering out of the shallows and up towards the mounted gathering.
Damnitall. She's stood out here for hours, and she's managed to miss the big finish. Bloody typical. But Orlagh takes it with good grace; she has a job to do, first and foremost. Several, actually. But she's not one to complain. Still outlining what she wants done to one of her few underlings, the girl glances back over a shoulder at Fenrir's triumphant shout, grinning slightly and pausing a moment in her distraction. That gaze flits from the Master-at-Arms, to Anders himself, and even on to Tiaryn, before returning to the person she's actually talking to. A nod and a few further gestures sees the explanation concluded, and the other servant - a comely, dark-haired little thing - is off and away, with a handful of young men cheerfully accompanying. Everybody's happy, when ale is mentioned, aren't they?
That done, Orlagh braces one hand in the small of her back, loosing a quiet sigh as she's granted a moment of firelit warmth and solitude; the other hand rising to smooth back her rainsoaked tresses from her brow. Though she never betrays weariness in the presence of her superiors, for the moment they're all distracted by one thing or another. So she takes the opportunity to tilt her features upward, inhaling a deep lungful of sea air - doesn't it make one want to sleep? - and letting the light mist of rainfall settle on her skin. It's almost like home. Particularly when she closes her eyes.
Tia is careful as she's seated, cause she's not sure how best not to injure Anders. But she definitely gets a better view from where she currently is. "That is true enough. Gethin is somewhat short." A pause and then she says, "I am comfortable, yes, thank you." She tilts her head a bit as Fenrir brings up the topic of the ale, thinking. "Well, enough to start with, I am sure, and we can always have more brought if need be," she returns, her voice fairly soft as well. She is just in time to get the best view in the house of the grande finale, and thus she gets to clap her hands for Einar and the rest of the men. "That was quite exciting," she says, and actually does sound like she means it. You can probably blame Dafydd for that. "Do you think they might like some music as well?" she suggests a little diffidently.
"Hush, you.. Lord." Fenrir flushes, despite the cool rain, and grins at Anders as the younger man teases him gently. Instinctively, his gaze turns to seek out Orlagh for a moment, eyes locking with hers before he looks away to tend to his men. After all, the training has been hard and the reward must be great. He trots toward the two 'teams' as they shamble, exhausted up the beach. "Well, well, boys. You lot know what I see? I see a bunch of sorry little gits what took three tries to get it right! And you, Lord Einar, what're you doing skulking about, eh? Next time, you lead your lads from the fore, like I know you can." His tone is harsh, and he glowers at the men, many of whom glare back defiantly.
Continuing on, still glaring - openly sneering at poor Jory, all covered in sand and mud - Fenrir continues. "But /Lord Anders/ says he saw soldiers. I told the Lord he needs to rest more, 'cos he's seeing things, but /he/ says he saw a hard drill done well. That's what /he/ says, and HE is the Lord." A few tentative grins begin to break out, and finally, Fenrir relents and joins them. "Lord Anders has had ale brought out for you, lads! Three cheers for the Young Lord!"
The fact that this is almost like home is the reason Anders is out in the middle of it. The cool rain, the mist from the water, it's enough to at least give the illusion of home. When the defense is fully broken, Anders sends his courser ahead at a walk to watch the celebratory dunking, which is when he realizes that it's his squire going in. A hearty laugh is given, and along with Tiaryn's applause, it should be obvious that there certainly is an appreciation for the work, and for the comraderie that's shown.. and continues to be. Morale is high, once again. Even Einar seems to be enjoying himself immensely.. which is good. Lad has to learn as well as task, and he did that in spades this evening.
"I think once we come back to the encampment, they will wish music, my lady. I know I'd like it." He's being quite truthful in that.
He pauses in his words, however, as the meeting down on the shore turns a little noisier. "Well done!" Anders calls out, and now he presses his horse closer. "The others'd not accomplish half of what we've done." He looks to Fenrir, a barely perceptible nod given to the man before he reins his horse around to make his way back up to the encampment, and the pavillion, taking the harp from the sworn sword of Tiaryn's, and passing it back. "Time for you to come in from the rain, however, my lady." As he passes, however, his gaze lingers upon the briefly idle Orlagh, but doesn't say a word.
Einar knows the Master-at-Arms well enough to not actually answer the question apparently asked of him, he just stands there and shivers like the rest of the lads. He'd managed to come out of it relatively dry until that last bit, but now he's as soaked as Jory. Back to camp sounds good to him for there can be found warmth in the shape of fireand dryness in the shape of a change of clothes. Assuming the rain hasn't got into the tents.
Well, if there's ale to be had, likely the remnants of the broth should just be kept for use the next day. Because these men, given the choice, are going to choose ale, right now. And Orlagh knows it. A quiet order is given to one of the older remaining servants, as well as some of the squires who are just standing about nearby. Well, she was granted some power by their Lord. May as well use it to see these cooking-pots hefted back up toward the pavillion and surrounding tents. The air of calm authority about the common-born girl is surprising, but no less genuine for it; while she never pushes or berates, she still sees results.
By the time the Young Lord is guiding his horse by, some of the fires are already extinguished, shadowy figures working in pairs to carry the weightier cauldrons between them, up over the dunes. But Orlagh has been left, for the nonce, alone by one of the sole remaining sources of flame, having dismissed the last of those around her. Casting a glance upward to the nobleman and finding his gaze already upon her, the blonde offers a quiet smile before demurely lowering her blue eyes and curtseying low, waiting until his courses has trod well past before she rises again.
Up ahead, by now the ale will have been brought out and tapped, ready for at least a few hours festivities before everyone staggers to bed. As for the handmaiden? There'll be a brief check upon the stores, a last bit of attention and prodding to stoke the fires that must remain through the dark hours, a glance in upon her Lady.. and then sleep. Assuming she's released. One never knows. Anders might suddenly find himself in urgent need of a fresh quill, after all.
Time for her to come out of the rain? And she's the one who's been out in it the least. Tia holds onto Anders, a little startled when he moves the horse, but well, that just gives him a hug, no doubt. From his good cousin and hopefully Corrie won't get jealous, if she sees this. Hah. She has to smile though, glad to be outside and not feeling all cooped up. "Alright, my lord, as long as you also are getting out of the rain," she says, though likely he's the only one to hear that. She does pause to call out, "Very nicely done, Einar. Remind me to write a song for you," she teases her goodbrother lightly. She has taken note that someone is taking control of the logistics, making sure there's ale and warmth, and very nicely done too. With that said, Tia goes quiet for the moment, letting Anders figure out where he's bringing her, since he rather has her at his mercy at the moment.
Last off the beach, Fenrir does pause to lean out of the saddle and grasp Einar's shoulder. "You did well, lad. Just remember - from the front. Always." He smiles toward him, straightening and trotting on, adding encouraging words to each of the other soldiers as they depart for the ale. Ale. Ale. Ale. Once the men have their backs to them, and -only then- does the exhaustion begin to evidence itself on Fenrir's features. When was the last time the man rested, after all? He straightens, exhaling slowly, the sound of a man celebrating a hard job well done.
Trotting slowly up the beach, he draws in alongside Orlagh, leaning slightly out of the saddle to rest a hand on her shoulder. "Get yourself some rest now, sweetling, just as soon as you can. And I meant what I said - what you done for these men might /seem/ small, but things like this'll save their lives in a week or three." He is utterly sincere, but the horrible gruff facade has dropped away, returning the rather gentle smile that he offers out. Straightening, the man smiles at her once more. "And, uh. If you -do- got any more of those dry spare tunics.." he trails off a bit sheepishly. "Well, I'll be having an ale with the Lord, but if you could send someone to my tent, I'd be in your debt. Really would."