Page 151: Bastards and Propriety
Bastards and Propriety
Summary: Lady Evangeline and Ser Jarod talk on the propriety of bastards and sparring women. It, predictably, goes not well.
Date: 13/12/2011
Related Logs: Complaints and Conversation directly follows. See also Clash of Wills the Lucienne Bastard logs, particularly Where Rumors End
Evangeline Jarod 
Random Chambers — Four Eagles Tower
Guest room! Very neat.
Tue Dec 13, 288

It's rare - 'rare' meaning 'pretty much unheard of' - that Ser Jarod Rivers actually seeks out Lady Evangeline Terrick. And yet, today he is doing so. He tries the places she generally haunts, at an hour he knows she won't be occupied with too much household business. The reading room. The solar. He'll find her eventually. He's a persistent lad.

It likely leads to quite a search, Evangeline tucked away for once in a rarely used guest room as she straightens the blankets on the bed with an attention to detail that the chambermaids obviously lack. She is, at least, currently alone though the door remains ajar as she swishes in a twirl of dark skirts around the bed to straighten the other side.

Jarod does come upon that chamber eventually, knocking on the ajar door. Though his heavy footfalls on the castle floor likely alert her to someone coming before he does that. "M'Lady Evangeline. Have you a moment?"

"I can certainly spare one for you, Ser Jarod," is the polite answer as Evangeline's fingers smooth over the heavy cotton of the bedspread, her gaze lifting under the fan of dark lashes to find the man in a moment's keen study. That same attention to detail cast previously on the bed focuses instead on the knight.

"I thank you," Jarod says with a quick bow as he closes the door behind him. Not his usual flourish. He gets through the gesture of respect promptly, to get to the meet of…whyever he's looking for her. "Firstly…" Though he's not sure where to start, it seems. He gives it some thought. Finally, he goes on, "…I heard you'd told the Lady Harlaw she was no longer welcome in these halls. Which is none of my affair, really. And given directions to our knights, which I figure is."

"The lady felt that the rules of my household were too strict for her," Evangeline corrects simply, her fingers falling away from the bed and tucking into her skirts as the petite woman straightens slowly like steel. "I have, yes."

"With all due respect, m'lady, you've really no authority to tell me how the regular guards can and cannot be drilled," Jarod says. "Though, of course, you may give those knights dedicated to your service any direction you like. And I will take any advice you might have for me and those under my purview under advisement." Though from his tone, which is rather brisker than usual, he won't take it very far on this matter.

The weight of that dark, cool gaze falls heavily on Jarod at his words, Evangeline taking a moment before replying. When she does, it is flat, mild, "Did you not say a moment ago that they are /our/ men, ser? And as part of my household, I will not suffer any man to physically harm a woman, especially not in practice, when there are other options." She pauses. "A knight has their vows, and a guard should be held to at least those standards."

"I will take my direction from Lord Jerold and Young Lord Jacsen in these matters, m'lady. If you wish to have orders dictated to my guards, issue them through our lordships. As is proper. Your ladyship is an expert on most of the facets of this household, I do not question, but the training of men at arms is, I will respectfully note, not one of them. I do you the courtesy of taking this matter up with you personally rather than issuing my ill-feeling on how you handled it to my lord father and lord brother, but please do not do so again." As for the woman herself, Jarod shrugs. "In any case, I've already told her I don't feel comfortable with her at our regular drills, but that's a matter of discipline. And security, as she's still Ironborn. As for what she does on her own time. She was not harmed anymore so than our guards routinely are at morning drills. The Lady Harlaw has chosen a path of a warrior, and she was accorded proper respect in that role by Ser Mallister. And myself, I assure you." Yes, he has sparred with the Ironwoman. "The women of the Riverlands do not follow such a path, but her ways are not our ways. She was in no danger. Still, if you do not care for such things within the castle grounds, that seems reasonable enough. The Green is not a long walk."

"I do not care for any member of my household engaging in improper behavior, and let me be clear that what is improper or not /is/ rather well in my purview of the Lady of this house," Evangeline answers, the first hint of the sharp-edge of words wielded as a weapon. "Take what you will to my lord husband or my son, but as long as your men are /my/ men, I have as much right as you to request that they cease such activities." She pauses, skirts rustling as she draws from behind the length of the bed. "The training of the men is, as you say, within your command, but this has little to do with training."

"I think, m'lady, if you will forgive me, you have no place to lecture anyone on improper behavior," Jarod says, rather coolly. Yes, he's going there. "And our discussion on the matter of direction of the household men at arms is closed. You know my feelings on how this was done. If it happens again, I'll just take it to Lord Jerold and he can sort it out. But secondly." A pause. "I'm headed back to Stonebridge in the coming days. You know why, I think. Ser Hardwicke and I managed to find the source of those rumors about Lady Lucienne. And yourself. A former Terrick chambermaid by the name of Rysann. Do you recall her? She recalls you well."

It is rather fortunate that the fall of skirts hides Evangeline's hands as they ball into fists, though her expression gives nothing away. That chocolate dark gaze cools, her reply a simple, "I recall her. She was dismissed for being a thief and a slob." A breath before she asserts, "My lord husband and I are partners, Ser Jarod. Take what you will to him, but my orders to the men still stand. In the future, I will be sure to address such concerns to you if I can be sure you will take them more seriously than you have in this matter."

"I'll take them as seriously as I feel they should be taken, and I think we've bigger concerns at present," is Jarod's reply. "And, yes, you will do me the courtesy of addressing matters that are my job, and not yours to me. Though as to which do concern you, I will not take that particular bit of business to your lord husband. I've spoken with my brother and sister on the matter on they have my promise on how it shall be kept. Still. The Naylands seem to be using your lapses in propriety to agitate against us in the matter of Stonebridge. The Rysann woman is handled for the moment, I think, though how long she'll stay such is questionable. I return to Stonebridge to see if I can find the man who prodded her to it."

"Take what, ser? The word of a chambermaid I dismissed for her poor service to my lord husband? Should I thank you, then, for not telling Jerold lies that you have chosen to believe as fact?" Evangeline questions with a bare hint of derision, her brow arching delicately before she shakes her head dismissively. "And this is why I gave my orders to the men directly. Do what you wish, Ser Jarod, but /my orders still stand/." Her gaze rakes over the younger man as she repeats the words. This includes you, obvs.

"I shall do as I please in this matter, m'lady, as is my right to do," Jarod replies. "I have heard your opinion. If you've issue with my conduct, take it up with my lord. We're done, I think." He sketches a bow. "By your leave. I should get on the road."

Evangeline watches Jarod for a moment, her lips pressing together in the silence that draws out before she allows, "You may go, ser."

"M'Lady Terrick." And with a turn of his heel, off Jarod goes.