|Brothers, Cats, and Dogs|
|Summary:||Rafferdy and Jarod loiter in Stonebridge and talk on Ser Jaremy and Lord Rowan.|
|Related Logs:||Treason and Sympathy|
|Town Square — Stonebridge|
|The surrounding terrain has several small gullies and streams that feed into the waterfront area just adjacent to the town square, the sails of the boats visible over the tops of the buildings. The square is floored in the same heavy stone that the east docks and castle are constructed of while the buildings are a mix of the stone, wood, and mortar. There are quite a few fish vendors with their fragrant catches for sale among groups of tables which tend to be busy most of the time.|
|Wed Nov 23, 288|
Rafferdy is sitting on a barrel. He has a far off, lost look on his face, daydreaming. He has a half-eaten green apple on his lap. Wearing commoner clothes, he's a little dirty, and if one didn't know who he was, there'd be no suspicion he was a noble.
Jarod has remained in Stonebridge, though he's taken his leave of Tordane Tower. Apart from what visits to his incarcerated brother that he's permitted. He exits the town's little sept. Looking freshly-washed and shaved, so perhaps he spent the night there. Though got little sleep, from the look of him. His stride takes him in the general direction of the local inn, and he nearly walks right past Rafferdy. But, catching the man out of the corner of his eye, he stops to double-take. Raising a hand and half-opening his mouth to offer a greeting, though the instinctive, 'm'lord' dies unsaid on his lips. Instead he offers, "Afternoon."
Rafferdy takes a moment to register he is being spoken to, "Hmm? Huh? Oh." He looks over at Jarod, "Sorry." He smiles a little, "Heh, I was just… um…" he shrugs, "…sitting." He picks the apple up from his lap. "How is your brother?"
Jarod snorts at mention of Jaremy, shrugging like he doesn't know where to begin. "That right there is a question it requires liquor to answer. Don't suppose you've got some on you?"
Rafferdy smirks, "Sorry, no." He offers the half-eaten apple. "I have fruit?" He smiles, not really expecting the offer to be taken. "I'm sorry about him. I tried to talk to Rygar, convince him to let Jaremy go to the Black." He shakes his head, "Rygar is…" He sighs, "Well, needless to say, I wasn't able to help."
Jarod eyes the half-eaten fruit, snorting again in a chuckle and shaking his head. "Yours to keep for yourself, though thanks for the offer. And…thanks for that." He shows no small amount of surprise. He tilts his head at the other man, like seeing him somewhat anew. "That you tried is…thanks. But, aye. Don't figure there's much that'll convince Ser Rygar to show mercy save a good portion of the Terrick treasury and anything we might get from Riverrun, beggared for Ser Jaremy's folly. That's why he sent me that notice Jaremy was here, I figure. It was no knightly courtesy. Or, at least, that was the least of what it was. He wanted Lord Jerold's loyal lap dog…" No small amount of bitterness there. "…to run here and beg and weep and plead back to our lord father to give anything and everything over for Jaremy's life. Well. He did not get that from me. I can at least say that."
Rafferdy nods, "You're welcome." He shrugs, "You took my brother on as a squire when no one even under our own banner would. I figured you deserved me at least trying." He nods at Jarod's assessment of things. "He's afraid allowing Jaremy to live will enable him to just breed further rebellion. I'm not sure how to guarantee he's wrong."
Jarod cracks a grin at that, a rather wistful one. "When I saw your skinny little brother four years ago, you know what I figured? The Naylands were doing our family an insult, sending us that. And doing Rowan one as well, a lord's son squired to a bastard knight. But I figured, what in seven hells? We'd show them, make good on it. I was real proud of what he was turning into, too, tell you what." The subject of Rowan does not seem to improve his mood. Though it's the last bit he answers, after a deep breath. "My brother is lost. I knew that when I came here. Exile and the Black would've been a mercy, but he'd still have been gone from us forever. Failing that…" He looks down at the toes of his boots, like he can't quite bring himself to say what's next while looking at Rafferdy. "…my brother is guilty. He has committed treason and sewn rebellion and gotten good people killed for his vanity. Justice must be done. This I understand. More after speaking with him. Though I love him still, Seven help me."
Rafferdy tilts his head a bit, "So, after talking to him… You believe if he were freed, even to the Black, that he'd just try again? Furthering rebellion?"
"If he took the Black there'd be nothing free about it. Was why I figured it was the only other option," Jarod says. "A man never leaves it. Desertion is death. But anything short of that…" He sighs. "My fair non-lord brother is a man who never stopped believing in fairy tales. And he's made himself the hero of Stonebridge in his mind, your family villains who're grinding it into oppressive dust. Even if it's not so simple. Jaremy's not the man I'd hoped he'd become." It clearly pains him to admit it. "I had hoped…on the Wall he might still find some honor, some life for himself that isn't just dwelling in fantasies. Failing that, I just pray he can die like a man."
Rafferdy furrows his brow just a little, and he hops off the barrel, moving closer to Jarod. "You're not answering what I'm asking you, Ser." He asks again, "If he were freed, would he just try again and further rebellion?" Then he adds, "Of could you get him under control?"
"I've spent the better part of the last five years running about trying to contain my brother's messes," is Jarod's answer to that. A note of defeat in his tone. "So…no, I don't figure I could. Even now, he doesn't seem to understand the wrongness of what he did."
Rafferdy nods, and seems unhappy but accepting of that answer. "Then there's little more I could for him. I'm sorry." He sighs, "I wish I could help."
Jarod frowns, though he has to nod as well. "It's kind of you to think on it, anyhow. I spent last night trying to think on some way I could talk to him that he might see…I don't know. Spent a good part of it trying to figure out how to forgive him, too. We were close as brothers could be once. I don't want him gone forever, one way or another, feeling this way about him. You close with any of your brothers or sisters?"
Rafferdy shakes his head, "Not really. I mean… Rutger, maybe some, but, not much." He shrugs, "I wasn't really the perfect noble son a Lord would want to have. I haven't even seen my Father in eight or nine years. But, I wish I was. I wish I could be more like them, but… I wasn't built like that. It's why I'm jealous of you and Rowan." He waves that off, "Anyway…" He sighs, "What do you think it would take to convince your brother things are okay? To steer him from rebellion?"
"A sharp blow to the head to knock some sense into him might do more good than anything else. Though I figure the time for that's long past now," Jarod says. "The thing about Jaremy is…I think he's always felt like he needed to prove himself. Because didn't - or couldn't - join the Kingsguard. Because he didn't go to war. Because he lost the girl he'd made into a fairy tale princess in his head. Maybe a bit because our father made me Captain of the house guard and gave our younger brother the House signet ring of authority, while Jaremy wasn't given such duties." He sounds half-guilty about it. "I think he wants real badly to be his own version of Robert Baratheon, liberating Stonebridge from the Mad Naylands. Like that'll prove he's…I don't know. I think he's just twisted himself up too much inside to steer away from the idea. I think all men get like that a little, but he's so far into it I'm not sure how to help him now."
"Well, I'm not going to hit him on the head," Rafferdy responds, with a little chuckle. "When someone becomes so impassioned, it's hard to get their vision cleared." He shakes his head, "The unfortunate thing, is that even becoming his own version of Robert, it wouldn't really change any of those other issues."
Jarod shakes his head. "Don't suppose it would. Jaremy's life…well, this is what he's made it. Part of me feels like I failed him somehow. Like if I'd maybe…" He suddenly chuckles. "…hit him in the head a few more times, he might've seen things better. You should get to know Rowan better, you know." He dovetails back to that particular bit of the conversation. "Write him more. You two'd like each other, I think. Rowan's far from a perfect lord's son, himself. Seven love him for it. I figure that's why we got on as well as we did. And…I think it'd do him good to have someone he was close to among his kin. Apart from his crazy-arse sister Rowenna, that is." Pause. "I mean…I assume she's crazy, given her reputation. Couldn't speak for it myself."
Rafferdy rolls his eyes, "Rowenna was odd. I don't know about crazy." He shrugs, "But, Rowan's odd, too. Like him or not." He sighs, "I dunnow. You know, Rowan ran away from our family as much as my family pushed him away. If he wanted to know us, he would."
"Odd. Aye. That's putting it mild." Pause. "I imagine. I would imagine she's real odd. Well, all women're fairly insane, so far as I can figure." Though when talking of 'Rowan' proper, Jarod's tone softens. "I think he feels there's no love for him there. Because he could never be what his father wanted. He figures he's not wanted to be known by you lot. I think it pains him, though. Blood is blood, after all, you can never quite get away from it. I think he liked meeting you at Riverrun more than he'd admit. And…I think he might need a proper brother in the future. There are…he's sworn to the Oldstones now, and they've looked out for him all right, but they're…different sorts than the Terricks. I'm not sure how well he'll do over the long under them. Just…if you want to do me a favor, write to him, see what comes of it. Easier than trying to help Ser Jaremy."
Rafferdy laughs a bit, "I'm certainly not what Father wanted, so I understand that." He thinks a moment, then asks, "Why did he go to them?"
Jarod takes a minute to answer that question. "Oh, lots of reasons." That probably isn't going to do it, so he goes on. "But in the main, Rowan has an ambition to join the Kingsguard. And he figured he'd get there better under the training of Ser Gedeon than me. Maybe he's not wrong." Though he sounds like he regrets that now. "Rowan and I are just…built different. I mean, far as fighting styles goes. I'm a broadsword, he's better for that swishy Braavosi nonsense Gedeon's traffics in." He rolls his eyes. "I'm big, he's small. I'm slow and steady, he's too quick for his own good. I'm a cat, he's a dog." He could probably go on like this for hours but, mercifully, the animal comparison is where he stops himself. "It just…wasn't working out. Maybe it can't. We're probably both better off."
Rafferdy nods, "I guess I'm just surprised, is all. There's clearly a connection between you that is undeniable." He smiles, and then extends his hand. "I should get back to the tower. It was good to see you, Ser Jarod."
Jarod just makes a "Hmph" sound as to his 'connection' with Rowan, but it gets no verbal denial. "Write your brother, Lord Rafferdy. I'll be back to see mine later in the day."
Rafferdy nods, but doesn't verbally commit, and then heads off.