|Summary:||Lady Roslyn and Lord Justin have a chat in the Four Eagles Tower Reading room that turns rather blunt, at least on Justin's part.|
|Related Logs:||Everything to do with the Nayland visit to Terrick Holdings.|
|Reading Room, Four Eagles Tower|
|The room has a large glass window and seat that looks out partially over the cove, in daylight hours the sun provides illumination to the room. Other stools and chairs linger in small groups as shelves along the walls are littered with scrolls, books, letters and documents. The contents are a modest collection of local records, histories, and literature offered to both the family and guests of Four Eagles Tower.|
|May 13th, 289|
Grey wool does little for Roslyn's hazel eyes or dark, chocolate curls, the wool plain and unadorned and almost common. But it seems a comfortable gown, and that is likely its primary purpose given that the lady has settled on the window seat with a book taken from the collection of the Tower. A Nayland guard stands at the door, quiet to give her privacy as she reads with an intentness as if she could devour the words entirely before her time at the Roost is up.
There's the brief sound of something faint out in the corridor, then the door opens and a man starts to walk in who's dressed in a faded green and brown hunting leathers with jerkin. The instant he realizes someone is standing inside near the door, Justin stops abruptly and eyes the guard, then glances over the chamber while his hand yet keeps the door from closing. There's Roslyn sitting in the light spilling in from the window and for a very brief pause he studies her before he takes a half step back, "My apology, Lady Roslyn. I did not mean to intrude upon your quiet." He doesn't quite leave however, looking towards the desk before Justin adds, "I need some papers I've left in here."
Sunlight catches at her curls and falls over Roslyn even as she looks up, her book folding closed much more reluctantly no matter how she smiles politely at the man. "Lord Justin, no, please. You are no intrusion," she replies simply, stirring finally to her feet with a small sweep of her skirts and a dip of her head. "I am afraid I have monopolized this library of your family's for too long, as it is."
Justin eyes her, then lets the door swing closed lightly behind him, "You are welcome here, as long as you are our guest, Lady Roslyn." He lifts his eyes to glance over the shelves, books, scrolls, maps, but as this chamber is open to all of their guests, nothing in here that might be sensitive. Account books and whatnot kept elsewhere. He walks on over to the desk and opens a drawer to pick out a leather satchel with some papers in it. Justin checks it, then closes it back up, "Anything particular you enjoy reading?" There's something else in the drawer he picks out, a rolled parchment tied with a bit of scrap ribbon, then he closes the drawer.
"I enjoy history, and observations of our world. Philosophical questions and musings, as well," Roslyn admits with a self-deprecating smile, brushing a curl back from her face with a quick gesture. "Anything, really, that will give me better insight to the world around me." She pauses, turning the book over in her hands thoughtfully. "May I ask after your papers? Perhaps I can be of help."
A finger taps the leather binding absently before he glances at it, then back to her, "Permissions list for hunting permits, and a few personal notes. Nothing important." Justin leans a hip against the desk and leaves both items sitting on it as he folds his arms over his chest to regard her. "I see." though he may well be reading a bit more into her statement than she intends, or might think he does as he watches her for a moment. Justin then uses his chin to indicate the guard, "Aren't you supposed to be trailed around by womenfolk to protect your innocent vitue, Lady Roslyn?" Justin twists his mouth wryly, "An elderly Septa, a handmaiden, something of the like?"
A laugh catching in her throat, the corners of Roslyn's eyes crinkle with a wry humor as she sets the book carefully on the desk and shakes her head. "A sworn guard does just as well protecting my virtue as a lady's maid. Truthfully, my lord, I have little thought I would actually be married for some years now, and have grown accustomed to having my privacy," she admits, drawing her fingertips against the leather of the book in a gesture to gain comfort. "I am no young girl to go off cavorting with any man who looks at me."
"Plenty of folk are wondering why." Justin's light baritone is low in volume. He drops his hands onto the desk, then reaches forward to adjust something tucked into his boot that's digging into his leg. He draws it out, glances at it and discards it on top of the leather folder - it's a hoof knife. "I mean, you come of decent family, certainly aren't bad looking. Why haven't you had suiters lining up to ask your father for your hand, or he to offer yours before now?" Justin lifts his gaze back up from the small tool to watch her.
The guard certainly shifts uncomfortably at that possible weapon, his own fingers falling to his sword but not drawing it. "I have been little out of the Mire to gain any preference. Not many fine lords visit us that I would have caught their notice and earned their suit. As for my father, well, I do not know if he purposefully sabotaged such, or if he merely could never decide where it would be best that I married," Roslyn admits slowly, her gaze drawing over the knife with a tightness, but she makes no comment on its presence.
Justin is wearing a sword and a dagger so … if he meant her any harm, or the guard, the hoof knife would be pretty pathetic a choice by comparison unless he was one sick bastard. One never knows. Justin isn't paying it any further attention though, it was stuffed into his boot when Ser Bruce interrupted his grooming of his horse after coming back from hunting. "But he sends you now, to us. His most hated rivals." Justin's voice doesn't have any particular inflection in it. He notices her gaze, glances at the hoof knife, picks it up and looks at it, then simply tosses it lightly into her lap. It isn't really even very sharp, well used and in need of a new edge, "It's for cleaning out a horse's feet. Surely you've seen one." The blade on it's about two inches long, curved and set into a wooden handle. She could clean her nails with it. Justin gives Roslyn a funny look, "You do ride, don't you? Thought to ask if you wanted to go and see the shore. But … if I'm making you nervous, Lady Roslyn, I'll leave you be."
"My brother brings me. Our father does not send me," Roslyn corrects simply, though she picks up the knife with a quiet twist, studying it for a moment before lifting her gaze back to Justin steadily. "I must admit, I have never cleaned my own horse, my lord, but yes, I do ride." She pauses, the curve of her smile turning somewhat warm. "You are much too young to truly make me nervous, Lord Justin."
He looks amused, and aye he's young, not yet 20 - though within days of it. One side of his mouth quirks into a half smile before his gaze shifts to looking out the window, leaning back a little on the desk with his hands on the edge of it. "Squire's duties, to take care of his own horse, if he has one. As well as his Knight's … so guess I'm used to it. Horse is like a man's blades, his armour. Anyone else touches it, he needs to go and check it carefully again himself incase it's been tampered with or done wrong. Little things like that can make the difference between living or dying so, aye, I prefer to see to my own horse in many things." There is a pause, Justin once more watching Roslyn, "So your father doesn't know."
"He does not," Roslyn answers truthfully, her brows curving slightly upwards as she admits it to Justin for all that her expression softens with her smile. She pauses, taking a moment before she attempts to turn the conversation with a curious, "In what way would someone tamper with a horse, my lord? Except for, of course, its saddle and straps.
Justin gestures to the knife, "Punch that up into the frog … that's the arrow shaped center part of the foot, and it'll bleed a little but if he's not walking on it much, it'll stop and he won't be obviously lame. Not until a man gets up and rides him … then after a little while he's bound to step on stones and open it up, get him lame. Easy to catch up and ambush a man then with a lame, bleeding horse. Or keep him from getting somewhere he needed to be timely. But he'd catch it if he bothered to check the feet before a ride. Many only look after, incase stones are picked up." He thinks about it before he adds, "Or, wrap a thin wire around the pastern, do the same thing after traveling a while. But easy to miss if you don't run your hands over the legs. Wise to do that anyway, incase there's heat in the joints or tendons from hidden injury." Justin continues to half sit on the desk, relaxed, "So tell me … what sorts of things you enjoy most, and hate most?"
Her brows draw in at the offered answer, sympathy filtering across her expression for some imagined animal as Roslyn turns the knife over again in her hands before setting it aside. She answers carefully, "I enjoy dancing and reading, my lord. Parties, of course, and planning them. I have not much skill for numbers, nor do I enjoy hunting or hawking."
"Shame you don't care for the latter things. But then, I don't suppose the Mire's very ideal for most kinds of hunting or hawking." Bogs can be dangerous places. Justin idly looks around as though he could see the other rooms and halls of the tower, "Not many parties or dancing here. Not for … a while. Yet here you said you didn't get many visitors who might take notice and wish to court you. So, who throws parties or goes to them, to dance, if no one comes?" Yes, there's a little sarcasm and maybe a good humored glint in his eye, though it fades after a moment, "Surely there are other things you enjoy, Lady Roslyn."
"Not many nobles, Lord Justin, but nobles are not the only people in this world," Roslyn counters with a bit of her own teasing humor, sharp wit easily edging her words for all that she smiles up at the young lord. "And no, only the most talented and brave of souls hunt in our marsh. Do you hunt, then?"
Justin arches a dark brow, "You throw parties for smallfolk often, and attend their's, Lady Roslyn?" Somehow he looks at her like he finds it hard to believe, her, doing that. There's that half curl to his mouth again before he nods, "I do hunt, often. Happens we need the meat just now. But I like to scout the land, know the people who live upon it. Who they are, what they do, and who doesn't belong." He shrugs and wipes a tiny bit of grit off of the leather that came from the hoof knife when he dropped it onto the desk before, "Walls can be oppressing and I'm fond of open spaces and woodlands. Feel the sun and the wind, smell the earth and listen."
There is a hint of her brow curving up at that doubt, an amused challenge that manages something warmly teasing as Roslyn says, "Every Sun's day is like a celebration in the Mire. Our levies drill and many find an excuse to come to town. Though, often, yes, I do throw other parties for those smallfolk within our land when they seem to need such." She pauses, drawing her book back into her lap and settling it flat across her knees. "You must hunt within our land, one day. I imagine you would find it quite the challenge."
"I would, as I tended more to high county than low, when trailing Lord Ser Haffrey upon his many errands. At least when compared to bogs. Some of the game would be the same, but … it's the land that would be tricky. Easier to loose one's way, and no slopes with running water to help one judge the lay of the land. Aye, I've traversed such before and am wary of it." Justin draws a leg up to set his boot upon the desk's chair seat, leaning foreward a bit to rest his forearm over his thigh. He falls quiet then and watches her, faintly pursing his lips and for the moment lapsing in his questions.
"We would be sure to find you the best guides, if you wished to. It only takes experience, to learn the land," Roslyn murmurs in response, though she draws silent after a moment as well. She remains still under that study, for all that she waits patiently.
Justin waits, maybe to see if she would ask questions of himself. But, as she does not, he looks briefly to her guard, then moves his hand over to pick up the leather folio and his rolled parchment, "I should let you get back to your reading, Lady Roslyn." Justin moves to stand, pushes in the chair. Before he turns to go however, he puts out his off hand to her, gestures to the hoof knife if she'll let him have it back. "Since … you don't tend to your own horse's feet, and I do."
Fingers catching up that knife, Roslyn draws to stand and step forward to place in within his palm carefully. "Thank you, Lord Justin," she starts to murmur, but then she catches herself on a thoughtful look. Finally, she poses that question for him, "Were you close to your brother, my lord? Lord Jaremy Middleton?"
The odd little knife he tucks into his belt, needing to take it back to the stables lest he forget it again. Papers tucked into his other arm, he meets her eyes easily enough, "I was, when we were boys. If I saw him now though, I'd probably knock his teeth out, or try to, before I'd get around to saying anything to him." There's a pause, "I miss him. I don't know if I'll ever forgive him." Justin adds low, "Why?"
"Only that I knew him, briefly, during the time my family held him. I had only wondered," Roslyn answers, smiling lightly to the man as she steps away to retreat back to that windowed seat. "We all have family we are not so proud of. And we all have our flaws, I would say." She pauses, drawing another curious look over Justin. "You never did say what you would truly feel if there were to be a marriage alliance between our families."
He stands quiet and still, watching her but doesn't say anything for several breathes. Not tense, no haste as Justin continues to try and get a read on her. His own face isn't giving away whatever thoughts are behind his eyes, nor his mouth. He finally shifts his jaw and eases his weight a bit more to one leg than the other before he answers her, "I don't think how I feel about it matters much. If my father decides it's best for our House, then so be it. I would like to see our energies put to better directions than a fued both your father and my own won't discuss the roots of, with any of us. Or has your father a story of his he's shared with you?"
Disappointment certainly filters through Roslyn's expression at his answer, but it is a mild thing where it is chased away with a small smile. She answers, "No, my lord. I feel I am close in his regard, but he has not shared it even with myself." Tipping her chin, her gaze drops to her book as she traces its cover for a moment. "I would also wish to see this feud set aside, Lord Justin."
Justin let's out a breath, softly, "You should save your dissapointment until my father has given his answer, Lady Roslyn. And then, presumably you'll have to deal with your own father to convince him that he shouldn't knock your brother's head off and call him an idiot. Offering your hand in marriage to a filthy Terrick." He watches her closely, a flavour of amusement with his last sentence. It doesn't linger long before he's quietly serious again. "If we marry, if you are honest with me , accept this place as your /home/ and care about it, then I'd try to treat you with the honor, respect and devotion a husband should have for his Lady wife, Roslyn. But if you come into this house under false pretense, with vile purpose, Seven help you."
"I doubt I will find little disappointing in your father's answer, Lord Justin. I only find it in your own," Roslyn answers frankly, honestly. Her smile has faded to something more serious, fingers pressing tightly into the leather cover of her book. "I have little pretense, my lord. As you have said of yourself, I will marry where my family wishes, but I do have hope for—more. More than a mere dutiful marriage." She draws in a breath, shaking her head slightly before she adds, correcting, "Lady Roslyn, if you would please."
He gives her a faint nod, "Lady Roslyn." Justin frowns faintly, "I'd hope for more, as well. To love her, if I can, and she me, with time. If I could trust her, when I do not trust her family." That frown lingers because he knows he's spoken too bluntly. "Enjoy the book, Lady Roslyn." The last he adds more softly, then Justin turns to walk to the door to depart.
"I shall tell you how I find it, my lord," Roslyn murmurs in reply, her gaze following him where he retreats with a quiet thoughtfulness.