Page 119: Broken
Summary: Some things are beyond fixing.
Date: 11/11/2011
Related Logs: Everything Jaord-Rowan-Gedeon
Jarod Rowan 
A seedy tavern in Riverrun
The only drinks here are bottom-shelf.
11th Eleventhmonth, 288 AL

Ser Rivers of Terrick make has been fairly hard to find today. He did his duty following about the Terrick retinue (in a somewhat downcast state) and then escaped the castle proper as soon as possible. He's back at the same seedy tavern where he and the one who calls 'himself' Rowan Nayland met Rafferdy Nayland just a few days before. Rafferdy is not here tonight, but the place is still dirty, rowdy, and serving cheap and awful booze. It's a party. And Jarod is right in the middle of it. He's presently standing on a chair at a table occupied by several other random men (one the blacksmith he punched those few days ago). He's got a glass of something in one hand and…he's singing. His baritone is generally decent, but he's fairly drunk at the moment, so he's not in the greatest of voices. Fortunately, the song doesn't call for a lot of notes.

"The bastard was raised to be
Sword of the Tower
Sword of the Tower
Sword of the Tower
You'll find him out whoring
At any odd hour
What's a poor father to do?"

Looking for him here? Was a no-brainer. And so the very last person Ser Jarod likely wants to see right now slips into the room, wincing a little as the booze turns one note particularly sour. She is, of course, in boy-squire guise, but unmistakably delicate among the 'other' men in the room, and distinctly lacking in the more buxom curves of the women. There's a beat of hesitation, caught between advance and retreat — then she splits the difference, taking a table to the side and waiting for him to finish performing. Or fall off the chair. Whichever comes first.

"Charming and comely
He's up to his balls (this line is accompanied by some illustrative thrusting)
In some pretty young thing
'Stead of manning the walls

The Boys of House Terrick
Are wanton and reckless…"

And then he does wobble. And fall off the chair. He crashes into the floor rather than the table, so it draws mostly a lot of loud laughing from tonight's drinking companions. Jarod also spills his drink. With makes him swear "Fuck" loudly, and mournfully.

And then finish off the song with a warbling, "What's a poor father to do?" while sprawled in a sitting position on the tavern floor.

There's a good deal of laughing, and some calls for him to finish, but he waves a hand in the air. "No, no, no, no, no. Fuck that. The rest of the song is boring. That's the only good part. All right, I did it, somebody owes me another drink."

Rowan sucks in a breath, wincing deeply as Jarod's falls rattles crockery and cutlery — and probably all the teeth in his head. She stands and paces over to him, standing a moment — a familiar pair of legs before she crouches down before him, bringing the rest of her into his swimming view. "I think maybe some air? Clear your head a little before going another round with the bottom shelf."

Jarod seems disinclined to get off the floor, where he stays sitting quite comfortably, propped up on his palms. Blinking blurrily up at Rowan. "Row…something." The greeting is loud, and rather bitter. "You know what? No. I don't think so. This is my party. This is not your party. And you are not invited to my party. So there. Help me up." This is said not to her but to the blacksmith (who still has a black eye). He is also drunk, but either less drunk than Jarod or just bigger and carrying it better. He's able to stand and offer a hand down, at least.

"Thought you two were friends?" the big smith asks, all puzzled as he hauls Jarod upright.

"So did I, my good Terrick-supporting fellow," Jarod answers languidly. "Sorry about the other night, again, by the way. My sympathies were misplaced. I have learned my lesson. Yes, sers, I have."

The squire blows out a breath, standing as Jarod's hauled up. "We need to talk, Jarod," she insists. "And this is not the place."

"Fine, fine, fine," Jarod says with a roll of his eyes at his new blacksmith friend. "No fun this one. I will back. I thank you good people for your hospitality." And he propels himself off the blacksmith, to stsand semi-upright. Blinking rather challengingly at Rowan. "All right. Let's go. Let's make this real quick. I think I can make it quick."

"Right. Quick." Rowan looks — a lot of things. Hurt. Angry. Sad. Confused. Mostly angry. It's the easiest thing to feel. She turns on her heel and strides out of the tavern, leaving Jarod to follow in whatever weaving way he can manage.

Jarod follows Rowan mostly under his own power, though he does lean heavily against a handy wall once he's outside. "So. Let me just do this for you and save you the trouble. Jarod?" He affects a somewhat higher pitched voice. "Yes, Rowenna. Oh. Sorry. Rose. For-fucking-give-me. Rose. What is it?" Pause, back to faux-tenor. "So while I was fucking you, I'd have much rather been fucking Gedeon Rivers." Pause. "Oh, I see. Well then. Sorry I was such a disappointment. Why don't you just go do that and then everybody'll be happy? All right?" Tenor. "All right! I'll go fuck him right now!" Baritone. "Well, that's just beautiful." He clears his throat. "There now? Not much else to say, is there?"

Rowan stands there and listens, arms folded, jaw clenched as Jarod does his Rose/Rowenna bit. She flinches as though slapped at what follows, and the word 'disappointment' makes her turn her face away. Overall, by the time he's done… there's not much else to say. Although she looks like she might be sick in the rain barrel. "I guess that's that, then." She nods. "Sorry to have bothered you, Ser Jarod. Carry on." She turns to go.

"You what pisses me off, more than anything?" Jarod reflects as she walks away. He's not really talking to her, but he's talking to the air about her. "I told you so! I did. I said you didn't really love me. I said it a thousand times, because I couldn't believe it. But you kept on about it. And you kept saying things to me that nobody'd ever said to me before and I…" He trails off, voice getting softer. He runs a hand over his forehead, letting it come to rest on the back of his neck. "…after awhile I thought you might actually mean them. I dunno. I'm sorry I treated you like an ornamental sword." He said that like it should totally make sense. "…but I was trying, you know, to be…I don't know. You know what the worst part is? I am in love with you. And now I don't know how to turn it off. That's a pretty fucked up thing to do to a person, I think. So, aye, go on now."

She hasn't gotten but a few steps before she stops to hear him, and he's barely done speaking before she turns in a fury, shoving his shoulders back against the wall he leans on. "I am so sick of you telling me what I feel and what I think and — everything about me is a foregone conclusion to you! I'm a fickle, faithless whore and I'm doomed, doomed, doomed! What do you want from me?" she growls. "If I tell you I do love you, you won't believe me. I do and in between regular bouts of wanting to feed you your teeth I always will, but there is more than — more than just wanting what you can't have or being happy with what you are or — the two or three trite philosophies you use to explain the world. Sometimes, you can love someone and they you? And it just. Doesn't. Work. WE. Don't work. Jarod." She rolls her eyes, blinking them rapidly against the sheen of tears, and gives him another shove, pushing herself away from him with the same motion. "I wish it were otherwise," she says, softly, anger ebbing as rapidly as it flared, leaving her drained. "And I wish we could fix it. But I don't think we can."

Jarod just listens to all that, grimacing at portions of it. He doesn't disagree. Though he does take a deep breath and say, "You know what I think, Rowenna Rose Nayland Asterholm Rivers Whatever? I think that's about right for you. I think, deep down, much as you might deny it, you're just like everybody else and you don't know what the fuck you want. Except…whatever you want *right now*, you'll get it. And just fuck anybody who you've got to bull over to have it. I remember what you said to me. The first we made love in that cave, back at the Roost…" He sighs. "That you don't think you just…smash your way into things. You just smash walls down. And some of those walls are people. Me and Gedeon are walls. Well…I hope he makes you happy. And I'm…" He swallows. "…I'm real sorry I didn't make you happy."

Rowan blinks, tears set coursing by that reflex, looking away again as she wipes her cheeks with her sleeve. "It's not your fault," she whispers. "It's not anyone's fault. Some people are meant to be lovers. Others — aren't. I don't know if there's a way to recognize that — ahead of time. There's just… a place where the road drops away." She shakes her head. "I thought loving you and wanting you was enough. It wasn't. Isn't. And… I'm sorry I didn't know that." She shrugs. "You'll find a girl who isn't mad and doomed and needs you to save her. And you'll be happy — er. Happier. Than you were with me. By far." She flicks a hand at the tavern door. "Just try not to drink yourself to death in the meantime, eh?"

"You did make me happy, though," Jarod says. In that bemusedly, drunk reflective way. "I mean, you drove me mad and it was hard but…that's why I wanted you to come stay at the Roost. I mean, I knew you wouldn't. And that's all right. You've made your choices, I'm not going to stop you. But I just thought about it and we could be in the same bed every night and go hunting and fishing together and riding and…just be with each other honest. And I think I'd…I think I'd have liked that a lot. But you wouldn't. That's not enough for you. It's never been enough for anybody. Maybe it never will be." He sighs as he watches her cry, reaching out a palm to touch her cheek. Gently, wobbly as he is. "Don't cry about it. Just…go be happy with whoever makes you that way. Not me."

"Fuck, Jarod," she whispers brokenly, on the verge of sobbing now, attempting — manfully — to keep it together. "If I didn't want something from life that made that impossible… then a lot of things would be different. It's got nothing to do with 'enough'… it's a beautiful dream. It just… don't fit in it. I'm not the girl who'd be happy in that life, Jar. That's got nothing to do with you… except that you're the boy who would. Go find the girl who fits in that picture. You can't make me her by wishing… and neither can I."

"I don't know what the fuck I want," Jarod says, hand dropping back to his side. "Didn't ask you to marry me for fuck's sake." He boggles at the idea. "You think life is just going to be this one thing. This one goal. But it's not, it's going to be lots of things. The things I wanted when I was sixteen…they were fucking stupid. Maybe I'll want all different things when I'm thirty. I dunno. I dunno what it would've been, likely just something temporary until you figured things out, except that very idea of it makes you think I'm trying to make you into a lady's maid or something." And that, plainly, hurts him very much. "It would've been what you'd have made it. Everything is. Including this." He sighs. "Anyhow, what was my point? Oh, yeah. Go fuck Gedeon Rivers. I'm sure that'll be all you wish it is. Until it isn't anymore." He turns on his heel on that note, to wander off. He's not going back to the bar.

Rowan barks a wet, mirthless laugh. "Hah! And here for a second I was feeling truly terrible. Thank you for reminding me what an all-wise, all-knowing, colossal shit you can be." She scrubs again at her face, and departs in the opposite direction.

"So's your face!" Jarod slur-yells over his shoulder. He's going in the general direction of Riverrun. If one is being very general.

Rowan will return to Riverrun, as well. Later. By another route entirely. Careful to avoid him as he has been, her.