Page 028: Befitting Gender
Befitting Gender
Summary: Rose and Amelia meet outside the gates of the Four Eagles Tower.
Date: 09 AUG 2011
Related Logs: Logs to be posted later.
Rowan Amelia 
Portcullis, TR
The main gates to the castle are protected on the ground by a pair of sworn members of the Guards who deny or allow entrance for those who wish to gain it and have good cause. About thirty feet wide, this stone enclosure looks well-beaten through numerous defenses over the years. A dual portcullis system operates to trap those inside, the iron gates currently suspended within the overhanging stone structure. A pair of massive wooden doors add to the defense but are kept open most of the time for the ease of travel of those who live inside.

Getting into the evening, the light of the day is heading towards the horizon but there is still some time left. Outside the gates of the Four Eagles tower, a familiar face has returned. Only two days after being released from the dungeon and splitting town, the rumors of Amelia fleeing are still spreading. So the look on the face of the guards at seeing her is that of surprise. Given what brought her in, the guards are also a little on edge as the whore looks serious. They're debating which one wants to talk to her while she stiffly approaches the portcullis — her limited movement likely to her injuries still hurting. The bruise on her face is starting to fade and it no longer looks the angry red.. but its still noticable and clashes with her long one-piece dress and properly done-up hair.

Rose Rivers is leaving the towers the same way Amelia is coming in, properly done up after her own fashion, circlet and ringlet and a wine-red gown. She slips past and between the other pedestrians, a wagon, the guards — and stops short at the sight of the bruised but unbroken whore. "Amelia?" She hurries over to embrace the woman, only at the last minute registering her bruises and stiffness, but in time to be gentle. "Amelia, Jar — " she quickly swallows. "I heard you'd left town! Sweet Seven, what happened to you?"

Amelia looks up in time to see Rose coming at her and seems confused for a moment, so used to seeing 'Rowan' in his guy's outfit. This is..not expected. She blinks a few times and lifts her hands in time to make sure Rose gets the idea that yes, gentle is necessary. Amelia embraces her sister and actually smiles for the first time in days. Family. This person accepts her regardless. She lets out a sigh of relief and holds Rose at arm's length by the younger woman's shoulders. She takes a long breath before answering. "I did something very stupid and I embarassed this house. I shamed myself and Jaremy. And I have been told by several people that I have worn out my welcome here. So I have left to take residence in Stonebridge for a time before I must move on." Her smile fades a bit with that but returns as she looks down at what Rose is wearing. "Rose, my dear, you look stunning. You're so very beautiful. I do hope you feel as wonderful as you look." Her hands drop slowly to fold before her.

Rose catches Amelia's hands, unwilling to lose contact — some time around the words 'I did something very stupid' her eyes began to fill with tears. She shakes her head, smiling through her tears even as they spill over, laughing even as her heart breaks. "Oh, my sweet, sweet Amy. We must get it from our father, because I am also very, very stupid." She takes a tremulous breath and tries to get a hold on herself — but bubbles another laughing sob. "Fuck!" she grins, sniffling. She might have on a lady's dress, but it's harder to switch out her squire's tongue. "I am glad to see you, though. Very."

Amelia laughs lightly and tilts her head to the mention of father. "Indeed, my lovely sister. I shall blame him because it is so much easier and convenient. As well as true. If he were smart, he'd be a Terrick. Alas, to be so lucky." The woman winks and removes a small blue handkerchief from a hidden place sewn into her waistbelt. She moves to wipe at Rose's tears, still smiling. "I'm very glad to see you as well. And you will be pleased to know that.. I.." She takes a deep breath and takes on an odd look. "I believe I am done with whoring. We shall see, but I hope I can leave it behind me."

"You must do what makes you happy," Rose asserts with soft emphasis, giving Amelia's hand a squeeze. "We all must. Whatever that is, Amy… I support you."

"Whoring does not make anyone happy except the customer. And then, only if done properly." Amelia tilts her head side to side as if its a point of debate among those who participate in it. But she smiles again and replaces the kerchief. "But thank you, hon. Your support means a lot. You have had mine since the day you arrived, whether you were secretly my brother or sister. It matters not. Your opinions of our father just endear me to you even more." She squeezes Rose's hands a few times playfully. "Now, tell me, you are walking around in a dress looking like a properly beautiful lady. What prompted this? Are you open about who you are? …Sneaking out to find yourself some time with a man?" She can't help the ribbing. It feels too good after days of anguish.

Rose's smile takes on deeper, more painful lines. "Both," she replies, shaking her head. "Neither. I…" She swallows hard and tips her head back, blinking. No more tears. Once she has that under control, she goes on, "I told Jarod. And he… is releasing me from his service. He believes he'll be disgraced because of me, that all I've ever done for him or been to him has been a lie — " her voice catches and she coughs, clearing her throat. She breathes deeply. "I might have guessed it would happen like this. And… now it has." She smiles tightly. "I couldn't become a knight based on a lie. And now perhaps I never shall. But at least I will live an honest person… whoever I am."

Amelia's face falls as she hears what has befallen her half-sister. She stares at the younger woman with a deep sadness and sympathy. When she finishes, Am moves in once more to give her a big hug. "Oh, my dear. I'm so sorry," she breathes. "That's horrible. I was thinking earlier when I spoke to Jarod how proud I was of you for doing what you were doing." She swallows and releases Rose. "Do you know if he is going to tell father? Do you know what his plans are?" There is more careful concern in her eyes and voice.

Rose shakes her head. "No. We go to tell Lord Ser Jerold together. On the morrow. And… in the meantime…" She shakes her head, wiping at her eyes and flashing another grim, determined smile. "I thought this would be — a relief, at least. But it's horrible, Amy. I've hurt him and… he absolutely loathes me. And gods only know what will become of me on the morrow."

Amelia looks more serious. "This is a dangerous thing to tell Jerold and make public, Rose. Very serious. Your heart is breaking, but we must guard it so that you are not threatened with its pain once again so soon." She takes a breath. "If father finds out, you will be reinstated in the family and he will marry you off to whomever he possibly can. We must prevent him from finding out or at least finding you. I cannot bare to lose you now that we've just found each other properly."

Rose shakes her head, blinking. "He can't. He disowned me." She frowns deeply, sounding less certain of herself and a little frightened. "You can't just… just disown someone and… and re-own them when you feel like it. The law doesn't work that way."

"If he can find a way or it is legal to do it, he will. Whether or not we like our father, he is still very smart and very heartless. I should think that he will try and find a way.. should he be alerted to you." Amelia is firm and strong, the woman's words sure of themselves. "But we can take preventative steps so that does not happen. I am sure that there are enough kind hearts in this town that you could be hidden if necessary. For now tonight and tomorrow though I should think you will be okay.." Something occurs to her, but she doesn't say what. "Tell me, what was Jarod's exact reaction? Was he hurt? Angry? Embarassed? Did he get quiet?"

Rose closes her eyes, "He was furious," she whispers. "Angrier than I've ever seen him. And hurt — oh, Amy. Gods. I'd cut out my heart and eat it raw if I could only take that hurt away — and to be the one that dealt the blow!" She swallows hard, hands trembling in Amelia's. "He said… he s-said that everything was a lie. All of it. And… how? How could he think that? What is so Seven-forsaken fundamental and important about gender that it invalidates everything I've ever been to him, every moment we've ever spent?" She leans her forehead against Amelia's shoulder. "He threw the wine flagon at the door the moment I'd stepped out — that's how angry. It kills me to think of it."

Amelia bites her lower lip, eyes on her sister with so much sympathy it nearly floods her own eyes. She sighs and lifts a hand to cup around behind Rose's head and pat her gently. "Its okay, love," she whispers. The whore swallows and goes back to holding her hands. "He's mad now. I remember what you said to me at the Inn about him. I know this probably hurts more than you're wanting to let on." She takes a long breath. "Give him a few days. As for what he said, I can understand that.. I think. You see things a little different because you have been to the man's world. The rest of us have not, though. But he did treat you as a man. Now you are not? It is tough to imagine. But while it is tough right now? Time, I believe, will heal this wound. He may even be willing to train you more in the future. Immediate pain is always the worst and I wish I had remembered that myself after I was released from custody."

"I've had my breakdown," Rose whispers, resting against Amelia's shoulder, eyes shut. She's exhausted — and likely didn't know how tired until this minute. "I went to the top of the towers, after — up there, no one hears you. You can scream to the wind at the top of your lungs. And I did. I screamed and wailed and wept like a deranged banshee, beat the stones, until I as nothing but a sobbing, shaking ball of tears and snot. I think — I think that got some of it out of my system, for now. Between these… breathtaking, but mercifully brief, waves of pain… I'm curiously without feeling."

"Good girl," Amelia whispers. "I was going to warn you about trying to keep it inside. It never works." She slips one of her arms around her sister's shoulders and holds her hand in the other. "I think you probably cried yourself out. That is a lot of emotion to just dump all at once. After Josse informed me that I had split the house due to my actions, I spent most of the day and night crying. Awful wailing. There was even lots of unladylike snot." She smiles with it, doing her best to comfort the woman. "So what are your plans, then? Do you want to take your skills to the market and attempt to sell sword? Find something more fitting to your gender? …Go get horribly drunk?"

Rose draws back a little, examining Amelia with concern and no small amount of confusion. "I cannot imagine what you might have done to cause such a rift, Amy. I've seen no such strife. It certainly — it hasn't vexed Jarod overmuch, anyhow. He's taking splendid care of your cat." She takes a breath and shrugs. "As for me, I've no idea what to do next. It will depend, I suppose, on what Ser Jerold means to do with me. I might…" she hesitates. "I might squire myself to Ser Kevan, the free lance, if he'll have me. He's currently in the service of the Baneforts, here. Or… perhaps… perhaps to Ser Gedeon of Oldstones." She brightens. "Oh! I'm quite ruined, by the way. It's not as thought anyone's going to be able to make an advantageous match for me. I suppose that's hopeful."

Amelia's brow furrows. "You mean that you've heard nothing of this? At all? Josse led me to believe that there was a division and that it was serious enough to question whether or not I had done it intentionally." This is obviously not news that would please her. It certainly does not appear to be doing that right now. The rest she listens to, laughing at the end. "Minx! You've done spoiled it. Well good. I'm glad. Hopefully you're enjoying yourself with a good man. Though I'm unsure about squiring for the gents from Oldstones. I've spoken with Isolde about the matter they are involved with. Its disturbing. I would trust Ser Kevan to take you on first. He's a good man of no dubious claims."

"He is a very good man," Rose says softly, sighing. "Better, I think, than I deserve at the moment. He is terrible tender, and sweet, and romantic, and kind to me." She curves a faint, sad smile. "I am exceedingly fond of him after only a very short while. But…" She shrugs. The girl is already in love, and there's no room in her heart for another. "In any event…" She tilts her head, frowning slightly, curiously. "Dubious claims?"

"If he is better than you deserve at the moment and he cares about you regardless, then this is who you should be concerned with. He knows you are who you are and cares for you without worry to your interests or how appropriate they are. You might consider showing him that you could be a wife to him, if that is your wish. But.." Amelia inclines her head, the word hanging in interest for Rose to finish her own thought. As for the rest, Amelia has spoken to Isolde on the matter — something nobody else in the Roost has done. "These men from Oldstones make me wonder disturbing things. I need the evening to think on what I've learned. Just stand guard, Rose. Recall your training and keep your guard up. Just because Jarod has done what he has does not mean that you nor I have abandoned our service to this family. We do not belong with our own. This is our home. We must work to defend it should the call go out."

Whoa, whoa, whoa with the wifing and stuff… Rose's eyes widen in alarm and she laughs, shaking her head. She kisses both Amelia's cheeks, careful of the bruise. "My darling, I'm not sure I would make anyone a good wife. But you are sweet to think me so… omnitalented." She listens to the rest, nodding, more solemn. "I will never abandon the Terricks. Not in my heart. I will never raise a hand against them, and I will do all I can to protect them. Nothing will change that." She looks back through the portcullis. "Gods, but I will miss this place." A brief shake of her head, and she goes on, "But I must find Ser Kevan. Where will you be staying? And for how long?"

Amelia seems pleased to see Rose moving on past her concerns. She even smiles with the kisses. "Tch. You are wrong to doubt yourself. You might not think it so right now but give Rowan some time to fade. You do not have to forget what you knew, either. You can be a woman, a wife, and even a mother, and still be dangerous." Her smile becomes a little more clever. It is quite obvious in this moment that, knowing who she claims as her father, she is related to the man. "Or did you think I am just passive with my protection of the Terricks? We all have our skills, my dearest sister. They do not rule us, though. I still cross my legs and sip tea.. but there are many things you would not think me likely to do from watching me at supper." Amelia winks. "I have raised a hand to them. In my own perverted sense of service, it was for Jaremy's own good. Perhaps it still will be. But you and I have come to love them in different ways. You are a sister to them.. I.. will try to be." And not be a whore. "I do not know. Probably in the gardens of the sept. I have little coin and should save where I can. You have a place selected? Or are you staying here tonight?"

"Come by the stables, later," Rose invites gently. "You can have my bed. I'm not sure I'll sleep tonight anyways… but if I do, I've napped in a good, clean pile of straw about a thousand times." She flashes another quick smile, heading tears off at the pass. "For now, I need to… see about arranging some things. And pack. Try to stay out of trouble?" With another quick squeeze of Amelia's hands, and another kiss to her cheek, the cast-down lady squire hurries off to do what she must.