|Bullying Squire Number Two|
|Summary:||Ser Maldred, the cantankerous bastard Frey, finds a new target.|
|The Crane & Crossing Inn|
|Not too shabby|
|30th July, 289|
The morning in the inn is not as noisy as the night and it is actually quite calm at the moment. Most people are already out or they are sleeping off the booze from the day before. Hoekenn has awaken quite early and is sitting off at a corner and just finished eating. His mind seeming to be quite lost in itself at the moment, clearly not noticing the people running around. Having to leave in not too long. Chores to deal with and all that.
That forgiving, tranquil aftermath of a merry evening is about to be disturbed by a touch of efficiency the chance of the road has dragged in. The tramp of heavy riding boots heralds the arrival of a fighting man, unarmoured, as you would expect on a peaceful morn, but girt with a heavy bastard-sword and a handy looking knife. His pale, glistening eyes dart about beneath a mess of murk coloured hair. His surcoat shows a grey, two turreted bridge upon a blue field, diagonally crossed by a red line. He looks well rested but his mood is still apparently imperfect as he saunters heavily over to the inn's bar.
"Good man," he commands haughtily, "have an array of your best breakfast fare - no skimping, you understand? goose eggs or nothing…good, … sent up to the most high and mighty Lady Jaimera Frey. With haste and thoroughness. Lady Jaimera is of exacting taste."
Hoekenn doesn't seem too interested in the man. Though he does glance over and tries to remember the symbol. It isn't until he hear the name Frey that he got it. Then he is back in his own world. Leaving the talk of food to be between the man and whoever he is talking to. Having no real clue about who Jaimera is anyhow, nor about this man in Frey clothing. He just sits and rests for now. Still got some time before needing to leave the inn. His fingers tracing along a pattern on the table. He isn't too far away from the talk. Hearing a few words from the man heading to prepare the food that was asked of him.
After barking his message - what sounds like a mistress's charge - the knight from the Twins untightens a bit, leaning back on the bar and casting his glance about with what looks like a negotiated compromise between a menacing glare and an idle stare. It settles on the muscular fellow with the curls, not for any urgent reason, and as he examines the other, a slow, short smile rearranges the Frey fighter's pinched features.
"Holloa, good man. You look as if life treats you well here in Stonebridge," he speculates with a slightly mischievous tone, "and I'll bet the village wenches agree. Thriving under the Harpy these days, eh?"
Hoekenn doesn't even seem to notice the talk any longer. As he is addressed he does not even know it. Fingers continuing to trace along the pattern on the table. One hand is against something at his hip, most likely a small knife of sorts. Not to attack, but just to check that it is still there.
If the Frey knight want a response it seems he would have to approach Hoekenn more head on than as it is right now. Consumed, at the moment, by his own thoughts.
That's not what this knight - who since his recent arrival only yesterday evening has been enjoying getting more deference than a bastard would command back at the Twins - was expecting. Certainly the commoner's abstraction is unusual; a better tempered nobleman, more at ease with himself, would no doubt write the fellow off as a churl or an idiot and let him be. But this knight instead flushes beetroot, then drains bone-white and takes several long, smart steps which bring him directly in front of the impolite Stonebridger and his obsessively tracing hands, one presumably over a little knifelet.
"I spoke to you, …good… man," he growls out with imperious emphasis. "If you are deaf, it would be as well to inform me before you irk me. Carve a message on your damned table if you like. But I will be answered. How do you take to Nayland rule?"
Hoekenn tilts his head as the man is in front of him and is addressed. "It's alright." He offers, ignorant of the man's mood. Though a nod is offered as he rises to his feet. "Hello ser. I'm Ke-… Hoekenn Stenhammar, squire to…" Forgetting the man's name once again. He really should try to remember their names. A stupid grin is offered as he stands still, except for the hand playing on the weapon at his hip.
So that's how the land lies; and the Frey bastard's breath slacks from taut to easy and amused once he realises he is not being deliberately baulked, but rather has decided to pick on some kind of half wit for his morning's conversation. He laughs quietly and almost certainly to himself.
"You are, ah, quick to identify yourself, squire," he murmurs with amused and reassuring praise, "I met Ser Riordan's boy yestereve who was a good deal slacker about it. That is well. I am Ser Maldred, son of the Lord of the Crossing, here to escort my lady aunt as she transacts…er, deals with certain business affairs." His voice is gentle now, slow, and as condescending as a Maester might be to a stablehand.
Hoekenn nods. He isn't usually quick to do so, but he thought he might as well seeing as the man is a knight and probably expected something like that. He has to try and be able to act more social. Also, it was mostly because he had no idea what else to do in that situation.
It is indeed true that he lacks quite a lot in the department of social behaviour and awareness, though he does make up for it with skills with the blade, if anyone would actually care to see him in action with the blade. All he does is the chores of a squire. Mostly at least, he might practice once in awhile in the presence of the knight he squire for. Though mostly he has to train alone after chores are done with, et cetera.
Having already sent his, and his aunt's greetings to the Naylands by way of Hugh Asterholm - whom he suspects might be a more reliable and accurate messenger than this upjumped bumpkin - Maldred has no need to tax the lad's powers any further. "We shall be seeing more of each other, no doubt," he finishes dryly. And sincerely - it would be just his luck to get lumbered with the addlepate all too often.
Swivelling on his side, Maldred tosses some copper onto the ashen board of the bar, then stalks off to attend his kinswoman and share her imminent morning fare.