|Summary:||Rebecca reveals an itinerary to Samphire.|
|Related Logs:||All That I Have is a Rivers|
|Rebecca's guest chamber, Four Eagles Tower|
|Big bed, sleepy septa|
|8th November, 289|
Early morning sheds blue light over the Riverlands, the lively song of the lark mixing with the steady, peaceable song of a quite more sedate and husky bird, singing the anthem of Septa Bridwayne's sleep up her nose.
The younger ones are up, awake and close to the chambers door, namely Lady Rebecca's handmaiden Samphire and the duteous groom Lovel. Lowered voices are to be heard by attentive ears even inside…
"Pray, Lovel, why isn't our lady married yet? She is comely and healthy, as it seems and noble of birth… ", the maiden asks in hushed, amused curiosity, maybe only partly for the answer one could think of, but also for the intriguing view of the young boy himself offering his version to solve this riddle. As usually Samphire wears her maroon dress of sea-washed linen, her flaxen hair lying in a shiny braid around her head. In her small hands she carries a platter with food, golden bread, still warm and cloaked in an exquisite scent, dark grapes and one of those smoked trouts, the Riverlands offer generously.
The adolescent groom, who considers himself the senior member of Lady Rebecca's motley household, answers with a certain grudging pride, attempting to impress superiority on the handmaid, though obviously also quite glad to be asked. The tone of his voice implies astonishment at such an ignorant question, and simple charity as the main motive for resolving it.
"Our lady has many enemies, remember, girl. N' so few knights are true enough to dare to come through in earnest. N' if false knights pretend, than I kills 'em, dunn'I," he explains with tolerant insistence. He is displaying before Samphire a certain swagger foreign to the lad's blushing exterior in his lady's presence, and also not bothering to take any care with his accent, distinctly of the smallfolk as it is.
He is, therefore, about to be quite severely deflated, as a rustle of drapery whisks about from within, and the portal creaks open, heralding a long fluent tumble of fiery tresses, a pale throat and two wide, wide green eyes. Rebecca has stirred and arisen, but if she heard aught, she does not let on.
"Ah, you fresh creatures, so promptly up and accoutred to do me service," she murmurs low and tender. "Samphire dear, come and sit on my bed. Lovel, go and fetch us something to drink." She adds a sparkling intonation to that last request that blurs her meaning. Is it a refreshing goat's milk she wants? Or an early start on full-blooded wine? One thing is likely - that her desire pays little heed to the time of day…
A curtsy and a bow follow the lady's appearance, a jumping apple at the young bower’s throat and a bit of regret sneaking the green-grey eyes of the one who has curtsied, for the answer she desired now seems to have to wait again.
"A pleasure m'lady.", Samphire answers placing the platter on a table nearby while the young groom went circuitously away to fulfill his duty, partly bound by both, the handmaiden's question and his ladies airy view. "An offer to sit often sounds like the messenger of news, am I right?", Samphire asks politely, while eyeing the septa and the groom with a hint of a smirk.
The lady does not at first answer, as if half unaware of her new maiden's words - or indeed the breakfast she brought. She's not hungry, not primarily, at the moment, more…affectionate?…, beckoning Samphire closer and closer (the septa's recumbent form is, as usual, bundled at the big bed's foot, leaving plenty of space. Rebecca catches Samphire now in a sort of gingerly embrace, and kisses the top of her head with care, as if she is a delicate house-pet. Then she leans aside on her elbow, looking thoughtful. "I do worry a little about that boy," she muses, apparently of Lovel, staring off now through a window's narrow, arched aperture.
It seems irrelevant, but perhaps there is some connection in Rebecca's head. "He took a certain risk in following me, and I do not think he would willingly leave my side, though it could cost him much. You, on the other hand," she adds with a soothing note, "would never leave me, of course, and still, it will cost you nothing…" Admittedly, it hasn't gained Samphire much yet, either, though Lady Rebecca presumably doesn't have that subject in mind. "As for news, well…I wonder whether you have aught for me, my dear? Or have you been too preoccupied making your handsome brother feel at home to find out any tidings?" Her smile is forgiving. "I liked him very much, you know. So charming."
The lady's signs of affection bring a blink to Samphire's eyes, the edges of her lips slightly crawling up out of many reasons. As the gesture ends, words begin and the handmaiden's view follow the lady's out of the window, as so often trying to study what things on the outside might lead to her sentences. "Risks, m'lady? Well, he's a healthy young boy… if anyone, those are to face some risks, I'd say. But of course I won't leave. Why should I? The offer of this position is well appreciated, I'm honoured to serve you and." Her gaze get's amused again and quietly strokes the bundle of a septa nearby "enjoy such lovely, lively company. "
One of her knees wanders up the matress, as she eyes the lady closely. "Indeed, m'lady, I fear a certain song didn't come to my ears, since I didn't seem to have met the right birds to know it and be willing to sing to me. And yes, my brother… I'm glad you met him " searching for any hints in her mien, as the lady mentiones his charm, she weighs to add preventively an apology for his behaviour, but decides otherwise, as the peak of irony, if it's even there, doesn't seem to get through.
Maybe a totally different direction. "He mentioned you and has been beguiled by your own charms, I ensure you m'lady. As martial as he may seem sometimes, I thought I may even hear him sigh soon, when he watches the towers from afar."
Soft laughter emerges to receive the suggestion of a lovesick Ser Leon, mirth which seems to pass Samphire's failure as an intelligencer over again with complete clemency. Then a mischievous flash of a smile infiltrates Rebecca's face for an instant, before she adds more reflections, in an even quieter, richer husk, "A fine courtier, we are agreed, and he *looks* strong. But do you know how able he is, darling Samphire? Suppose that Sevenstreams ruffian who serves Frey were to insult me again," and, despite these harsh condemnatory words, Rebecca speaks them in a pensive, almost wistful timbre. "…or indeed, if they were to fight for…quite other reasons?" Is she talking about some high political war…or a struggle to be her own champion? "Which would prevail? Whom would you wager on, little one, affection put quite aside? I know you've a shrewd eye…"
The lady has obviously found these lines of thought very amusing, and she lies flat back on the pallet now, giggling persistently for a little, before she adds, curter and more serious, "Let's have a bit of that breakfast now. That laggard boy is sure to turn up soon. Poor Lovel, I really am concerned. You see, no one can say you had a hand in my escape, dear, and my septa is protected by her age, and station, but Lovel…I fear they will lash him quite severely, once we're back at Kingsgrove."
"Once we're back at Kingsgrove.", Samphire repeats, for the sitting at the bed did offer a bit of those news in a circuit way.
"Well, m'lady strong he is as the warrior himself, my brother, I can assure you. He may show a …fiery attitude sometimes, but at least for a fight, that's more of help than to hinder. The Frey-knight on the other side… the knight you scratched, m'lady. My gradmother often said there are sign's hidden in both the smallest and the greatest acts. A great act it has been indeed to scratch him and a lady's fingernails are a mighty weapon, though often not as mighty as to make a knight bleed for days, unless they were poisoned…" Carefully Samphire reaches out for the lady's hands to have a closer look at those weapons.
"After all, I trust my brother's talents enough to ensure you, he would win this fight and many others. For poor Lovel… you're right m'lady, I guess he won't leave at his own will whatever danger he might ride into. But after all, he's a strong young boy, maybe some martial training could show him how to face at least some of this risks and the time he needs to study them might spare him others.", Samphire suggests carefully, though the hint of regret in her face again shows, that this suggestion isn't as strongly spoken as it might have been.
"Oh, did I not say," comes the lady's answer; she is looking out of the window still, and her long, as yet unarranged hair completes her expression's protective outer walls, but it is is quite likely that she is smiling, though impossible to tell from her genuinely curious voice. "Yes, Cousin Stafford - the Young Lord, you know - invited me to come back for a little. I thought about it, then I wrote to him to say yes, had one of those Terrick boors pass my letter along. It'll only be for a while, I should think. Until matters concerning my rightful position have been resolved…after that we can return to the Mire! My grandmother is the Hag of the Mire, you know," Rebecca continues equally playfully, "and I'm sure she'll quite take to you…but yes, Kingsgrove first…"
By now the noblewoman has leaned back towards her attendant, the lineaments of her face grave, but kind. "And your brother? What does he plan? He has yet to swear his sword hereabouts, hasn't he?"
At this point a knock of the door announces the groom's return with his drinks. "Ah, that will be the boy at last," Rebecca mutters with fond reproof. "We really must get started on that breakfast, too; show Lovel in, then set it upon the pallet, dear…"
The groom enters, diligent as ever. Lanky movements show another platter, carefully balanced with four jugs of clay, filled with four fluids to make sure his ladies desire is fulfilled whatever it might have been. White milk, clear water, a sweet, dark wine and a light, golden apple wine are gathered with four cups. "M'lady, my apologies it took so long. I just… well I hope it pleases you.", he says with the beginning of another bow, though soon stopped for balancing the jug's doesn't allow the boy the courtesy he wishes for.
"Let me help you…", Samphire says with a bit of compassion, as she reaches out for the boy's platter, biting her lips to suppress a grin, as he sighs relieved when the desired bow finally is allowed to sink down. The other platter with the food finds its way to the pallet, as said. "Kingsgrove. West. I've never been there…", she simply says, as she places the breakfast. "And the Mire…", her brows are raised, as she listens to the dreamy voice of the lady "M'lady, yes, I heard a few things of Lady Rebekkah Nayland… after all she should be a wise woman." she says diplomatically. "Maybe she could help you to resolve the issues about your position? And for my own brother, yes, he mentioned he was looking for his sword to be sworn, the other evening. Again I can ensure you, he is a talented knight…", Samphire adds.
The lady takes up her eating knife in her huge, grasping Nayland hands, and acquires a healthily enormous portion of fresh-baked bread - no longer quite steaming-hot! - and fresh trout, falling into deliciously elegant flakes. For Rebecca's appetite is typically quite as ferocious as her frame is tall and lean. She takes over Samphire's serving in a by-now-accustomed role-reversal, proffering her a smaller quantity; everyone knows the smallfolk are more prone to run to fat than the nobility, and a fat handmaid must be avoided at all costs.
Only after all this is sorted out does she turn her eyes on Lovel's various gifts. "Why, the boy's brought us up half the cellar! Really, Lovel, try not to be so extravagant. Our hosts are not fabulously wealthy, after all…"
Eating and drinking (only the milk, to Lovel's possible chagrin) are now the concerns at hand, and the more intriguing passage in Rebecca's breakfast chatter is over for today.