|Summary:||Lady Rosanna attempts poor wiles on Lord Patrek.|
|Date:||February 23, 2012|
|Related Logs:||The whole — invasion. Thing.|
|Gardens — Seagard Castle|
|Flowers and shit.|
|February 23, 289|
The garden at Seagard has already proven a lure for one Rosanna Groves, who takes regular moments during her stay to appreciate it — or complain to Day or Deirdra or her handmaiden that it's not as good as the orchards at Kingsgrove. Her handmaiden does some needlework nearby as the Groves daughter reaches up on tip-toe to catch a whiff of the flower on a low-hanging branch. Her gown is a rich, deep green, touched and traced in accents of brown, and her auburn hair is pulled and twisted back artfully in front and allowed to tumble down her back.
The new Lord of Seagard has very busy days, but now and again even a Lord must escape his meetings and advisors. So it is that Patrek Mallister slips (a little guiltily) into the gardens of Seagard, perhaps hoping to be alone. He finds, instead, a lady in green and her handmaiden, and the blond-haired boy in his black mourner's clothes offers a courteous bow. "My lady," he offers politely.
Rosanna turns a bit quickly at the interruption by so particular a person. "My lord," she says. Then she remembers herself and focuses into a curtsey as deep and graceful as she can make it. "I was just — admiring your gardens," she says, beginning to warm to the task with a smile. "They are very fine."
"Oh," the boy says with a slow blink. "Well, I am glad they suit you, my lady. I hope your stay here has been well, thus far?"
"Very well, my lord." Rosanna studies him with a keen-eyed gaze as if trying to make something out. Then she asks, "Do you visit them often?"
Patrek peers back at Rosanna as he's scrutinized, and then glances down to quickly affirm that he hasn't got any stains or smudges on his clothes. "Your pardon, my lady?" he inquires, brows lowering in mild puzzlement, "Them?"
"Here," Rosanna clarifies with a flickering smile. "Um. The gardens, I mean."
"Oh," Patrek murmurs, clearing his throat. "I suppose so. I never gave it much thought before. Are gardens a hobby of yours?"
"Oh. Not really, I suppose. We have orchards at Kingsgrove, but—" Rosanna's smile curves with a bit more confidence. "Are you sneaking out of Council, my lord?"
"No," Patrek replies, a little too quickly on the heels of the question to avoid sounding defensive. "We have simply taken a recess for a half hour." So there.
"I didn't mean any offense if you had," Rosanna offers with a smaller smile. "You must barely get a moment to yourself. I can't even imagine."
"Seagard must be repaired as quickly as possible and return to guarding the shore," Patrek replies, "and it is my duty as Lord to see it done. Perhaps I will win some moments to myself when that is finished."
"Of course," Rosanna agrees a bit quieter. "I didn't mean to imply—" She stops as she considers her words, then says, "I am glad you have a recess, at least."
"Well," Patrek murmurs, huffing out a soft breath, "so am I, to tell the truth, my lady."
There is something pleased and perhaps a bit victorious in the widening of Rosanna's smile. "Then we have something to agree upon," she says. "Would you care to walk, my lord? You must be sitting all the time."
"Ah, of course," Patrek offers politely as he steps over to Rosanna. He hesitates a moment before offering his arm in gentlemanly fashion.
As graceful as can be, Rosanna slips her hand into the crook of his offered arm, settling it just so. Her handmaiden begins to fold up her needlework in case their walk takes them out of sight and she needs to trail behind at a distance. "Would you rather be with the army?" Rosanna wonders. "Or here in Seagard?"
"I should have gone, had responsibilities not demanded I remain," Patrek answers as they begin to walk. "And I know well enough that I am not… I was yet a squire before now. I have no right to play at leading an army when we go to war on enemy territory. And you, my lady? I am sure you must be worried for the men of your family."
Rosanna looks down at her feet a moment, lips pursed, before she remembers grace enough to lift her eyes. "They will do as their honor dictates they must," she says, a bit too carelessly.
"Of course," Patrek replies gently, "but that does not make it very much easier, I find."
Her smile becomes a little forced as her gaze slides away. "I suppose not," Rosanna agrees in an artificially light voice.
"Your pardon, lady," Patrek murmurs, dipping his head, "if I have caused you any distress by speaking so."
"No, no," Rosanna says, returning her gaze swiftly to him with a more successful smile. "It would not do to pretend things weren't happening, would it?"
"I don't see much point in it," Patrek agrees. "Seems an injustice to the day to simply pretend."
"Of course." Rosanna studies his face a brief moment before looking back ahead of them, the hand not tucked into his arm smoothing down her skirt. "I'm sure they will acquit themselves bravely, as shall yours. All of the Riverland men."
"I believe they will," Patrek says as they move past a rosebush and he pauses to study the blooms. "They fight in the memory of what has been lost and to keep their homes from further threat. It will make them brave and strong."
"I am sure it will," Rosanna agrees. She reaches to stroke the delicate line of petals of one of the roses on the nearby bush. "In the meantime, we must keep up as best we can." Looking back to him with a warm smile, she says, "Do you enjoy dancing, my lord?"
"I…" Patrek blinks, clearly caught a bit off-guard by this sudden chance of topic, "Well, yes, my lady. I suppose I do when there is occasion to dance."
"Deirdra was wondering if it wouldn't help to lift spirits — something diverting, at least. We were probably just talking about dancing because I love it so." She shakes her head and smooths a curl back from her shoulder. "It sounds silly when I say it like that. I don't know how to talk of lifting spirits without — thinking of why they shouldn't be lifted, I suppose."
"I am not sure, just now, a dance would be the best thing. Perhaps, as a way to celebrate when the men of the Riverlands are safely returned home…?" Patrek suggests, offering a faint smile.
"No, of course not," Rosanna is quick to agree, even as her mouth twists in something of consternation as she looks back ahead of them. "I didn't really mean — that. Although I'm certain the celebrations will be beautiful when they return home."
"I understand, please don't concern yourself, my lady," Patrek replies, offering Rosanna's hand a gentle pat pat. As they come around the curve in the garden path, back towards the entry into the castle, the Lord sighs softly to find a couple of the men from the council already waiting near the door. "It seems I must return."
"Thank you, my lord," Rosanna says, something wry in the curve of her smile. She glances over to the men waiting, considering them with some show of humor. "Do you think if I asked very nicely, they would let you stay?" she asks, a hint of a tease in her voice.
Patrek laughs a little, shaking his head. "I am afraid not, my lady. Very pressing business, you know." He affects a bit of a pompous chest puff. Then unwinding his arm from Rosanna's, e returns to his less-puffy self and offers the lady a parting bow. "A good afternoon to you, my lady."
"I can be terribly persuasive, but I suppose I shouldn't try to keep you." Rosanna crosses her hands over her skirts and dips in a graceful curtsy. "Good afternoon, my lord. I hope you take as much time to care for yourself as you do to care for your people."
"Thank you, my lady," Patrek says, offering the young Lady a small wave before turning and vanishing back into the halls of Seagard.