|Summary:||Gedeon's 12th birthday is not forgotten by his sister.|
|Stables - Tower Hall|
It's a day like any other for Gedeon, save for the newer, brighter saddle that hangs where an older, much more worn one used to be. If Gedeon spent an extra half hour oiling this quietly delivered gift, when it was too fresh and new to need such attentions, he's gone back to more fitting page duties, now. The sort of duties that have him in plain, rough clothes, sleeves pushed up to his elbows and pitchfork in hand. The horse shifts quietly in his stall as the boy tosses soiled straw out and, once that's done, begins bringing fresh straw in.
The rush of the young Lady is only made more gleeful by the item she carries in a basket, covered in a kerchief. Milicent trundles behind, calling out for her to slow down. It falls on deaf ears as Isolde steps slowly inside the stable, looking up and down for the brother she secretly calls so. From her lean, she straightens and then takes note of the small figure grasping an armload of straw to freshen the stall. Her smile grows again and just as Milicent catches Isolde to help tuck up her skirts to try to keep them from being soiled, the young girl is off again. Sighing, Milicent catches her breath and rests there a moment as Isolde skitters after him. "Gedeon." She says cheerfully, her face filled with a smile as she shadows him, waiting for him to deposit his load of hay.
At the sound of rushing feet, Gedeon looks over, pale eyes peering around an armful of straw. Carefully, he drops it in with the horse and closes the stall, brushing bits of clinging hay from his clothes. "You're dressed too finely to be in here," Gedeon points out pragmatically, as the girl bustles in with her basket and her grin.
"Maybe.." She relents and grins a bit more. Isolde was never one to hesitate and she extends the basket. "I can help you with a few things…but I can't muck the stalls. I could fetch the water." She offers. The young Lady watches him and then looks him over. "Milicent and I made this for you while mother was away. I found the apples out in the fields.." And there they are, open tarts with sugar sprinkled atop, some salt pork and a capped mug of wine. "Every birthday needs a feast."
"They're my duties," the boy insists with a hint of pride, "I'll see them done." He glances down at the basket, the corner of his mouth lifting in a faint smile as he shakes his head. "Every birthday? Even a bastard's?" But the words are more tease than real question. "Thank you. That was very kind."
Isolde's smile grows more and she shakes the basket at him to take it. "You can wait to do your duties..or I can do a couple of them so you can eat. Please." She really wants him to try it, eagerness showing on her face. "Every birthday is precious..the Septa says. It is the birth of a new life and that is a blessing by the Seven." It might be rehearsed but her words sound too genuine for that to be so.
"Well, some births aren't worth such blessings," Gedeon says, but he reaches out to accept the basket. He uncovers it to examine the apple tarts within, and he wipes one hand on his pants to clean it as much as he's able. A tart is selected, lifted up and bitten into. He chews slowly and then offers Isolde a low nod. "Delicious. But, I can't eat them on my own."
"No..all birthdays are blessed.." Isolde insists as she moves to roll up her sleeves and look as if the next stall shall be her care. "I am here, you can eat. So you are not on your own.." She proclaims with a grin. The young lady leans down to try to take up from the store of hay, Milicent from the background crooning out a 'No wait m'lady Isolde..'. Too late. She hefts it up, a shower of bits and pieces falling over her face to draws a sudden sneeze from her.
"Isolde," Gedeon groans, "I'll see to it, please put that down." He sets down the pastry and basket and quickly licks his fingers clean before he reaches for the straw himself.
Stubborn as any, Isolde snakes away from him in a quick flurry of steps and she starts to lug it towards the next stall. "I can do it…promise." She says and lifts her foot to try to push the stall door open. She struggles a moment, hopping on foot before she starts to push. Giving up, she turns to find Milicent headed for her and there is a faint started eep.
It's one thing to ask Isolde to stop, but when he's ignored, he sighs softly. The manhandling, if there will be any, is left to Milicent. Gedeon only steps out of her way and lets the woman do her work.
The hay is all but dropped when Milicent tugs at Isolde's arm and despite the ultimate ending of such a task, there is hay and straw to be found all over her. Not that this isn't a daily occurance as it is. Biting at her lip as Milicent gently chastises her, she is eventually released. There is a faint look of disappointment in her eyes as she turns back to Gedeon, brushing at her dress, trying to clear the offending bits. "So I heard father gave you a saddle. A very beautiful one."
Gedeon studies all those bits of hay all over that very fine dress and only shakes his head again, smiling faintly. "It's hanging there," Gedeon says, gesturing to where it rests. "It's a very good saddle."
Plucking still at little bits and pieces, she moves over to get a look, arcing so as Milicent mutters and sits on a crate near by. It is hard to miss that gleaming leather, new and obviously already loved by Gedeon. Her smile grows and she steps closer. "ohhhh.." She says in a soft voice. Looking back at him, she smiles, "You know father went to many leatherworkers to find the right fit. He spent a month on it, I went with him but he finally had one made before I could see it." She nods her head and then states, "I am sorry we did not celebrate you birthday like mine.."
"It doesn't matter," Gedeon says for that. "This is better." He turns to study the saddle in thoughtful silence for a few moments. "He spent that long, looking?"
"Yes…very long. He wanted it to be perfect for you. He told me so….I think Geonis is jealous of it. He keeps talking about it in the Hall." That makes her smirk a bit but she shifts and turns to face him, giving a shake of her head to free some of the bits from her hair. Isolde looks back at the saddle. "It suits you, Gedeon." She nods her head. "Now come.." She reaches for his hand, meaning to tug him back towards the basket.
"I don't think Geonis has anything to be jealous about," Gedeon says with another small shake of his head. He peers at the pastries and then back at Isolde, eyes squinting. "I will eat more," he murmurs, "if you will promise to stop hefting hay about."
Hesitating, Isolde hmmmmms and narrows her gaze. "Deal…" She gives him a faint tug and so that they can partake of the basket again. "Milicent made sure to bring the wine, it is something every young man should have." Now it sounds like she is the authority on this and leans down, leaving his hand to take up the small croked jug to offer it to him. "Whether Geonis has reason to be or not..he is. He is not angry for it..he likes you." She explains. "But jealous all the same."
He walks when she tugs, heading over to a block of hay so he can sit and pick up his half-eaten tart. "Well, his birthday will come, soon, and then everyone can be jealous of him." He studies the wine before accepting it and taking a swallow. There is a small cough (very manly) before he stiffens his chin and has another.
Her hands press together to watch him drink the wine. Cough. Isolde grins from ear to ear and wrinkles her nose. "Everyone is jealous of him.." She says, "Except me.." She plucks out a tart and lifts it to her lips. She takes a large bite and mmmms, moving to sit next to him, her back brushing his arm. Another piece of straw flutters down from her hair and she licks her fingers. "Is it good?" She asks him, leaning over to get a look at the jug.
Gedeon clears his throat again and tilts his head to look over at his half-sister. "No," he admits with a faint smile, "but I'll learn to like it. Everybody else seems to, it can't be so hard."
Isolde wrinkles her nose, "I don't think I will….its bitter. I am not sure why others like it.." She swings her legs a bit and continues to munch on the tart. "So now you are as old as me, we are both twelve but in six months I shall be thirteen." She beams at this and gives him a look. "I am your older sister.." It sounds good when she is the younger sister to Gedeon. Milicent huffs and rubs at her forehead, just glad to rest as the two children sit together.
"Mmm," Gedeon hums, sounding much impressed (or at least trying to be) around a mouthful of tart. He speaks, once he's chewed and swallowed. "Nearly of age to be married," he teases. "Do you think you'll like living in The Roost?"
Marriage. Isolde's eyes bug a bit, "Marriage?" She coughs a little and then furrows her brows. "You just want to get rid of me.." But it is a smirk and then she tilts her head in thought. "I always like it at the Roost, Jaremy and Jarod are lots of fun…you should come with next time. I think we go next week." She says, "I will ask father, I am sure he will take you." She insists.
"Isolde," Gedeon chastises gently, his gaze dropping, "that wouldn't be my place. Lord Geoffrey does enough, and your Lady mother needs no new reasons to dislike me." He reaches with his free hand to idly scratch at the back of his other shoulder.
"Well mother is not going to be there next time. She tires of the Roost and will stay behind. She hates travel.." Isolde explains. "So I will ask that you be allowed to come. You must meet them. Jarod is a Rivers too. He is very nice and Jaremy likes his brother. He will like you too." She insists and sticks another bit of her tart into her mouth. "Besides, you should see the pond that is in the north fields."
Gedeon looks skeptical for all these promises of instant friendship, but he makes no further argument. Instead in has another large swallow of wine and, fighting the urge to wrinkle his nose asks, "Why the pond?"
"Its a beautiful place. There are a lot of frogs and the like…but it is good for swimming." She tells him. Isolde tilts her head to look at him and gives him a gentle bump of her shoulder. "I can go get you some water instead…maybe milk if you like.." She offers him as she notices the look on his face. She reaches over to try to snag the wine from him.
"No, I'll finish it," Gedeon insists, holding the wine a little higher and out of Isolde's reach. He studies the basket, less two tarts. "Thank you, Isolde. I should finish the stalls. Will you take those back to the kitchen, and I'll have another, later?"
"You know, for being younger than me..it is odd that your arms are longer.." Isolde chirps and then withdraws, eyeing the wine jug and then him a moment. She looks to the basket on the floor. "I can, yes if that is what you like." She slides from his side and reaches down for it to pluck it up. Milicent takes note and also rises, huffing as she pushes herself up.
"I'm bigger," Gedeon points out a little proudly. It's not so very many people he can say that about, at this age. The mug is polished off before he hands it back to Isolde along with the basket. "Thank you," he murmurs a second time and then, after a small pause, "sister."
As he gives her the mug, she slides it carefully in next to the other goodies. Isolde smiles and nods her head but it is his naming of her as sister that causes her to smile all the more. Her face lights up and she dips her head to him. "Happy Birthday, Gedeon…" She is practically beaming now as she looks to Milicent. "The basket will be waiting for you.." She tells him and hesitates before dipping along her feet.