|Summary:||Cherise banters and drinks away her captivity at Tordane Tower with Ser Jarod and Squire Hugh. Cameo by Alric.|
|Related Logs:||The Charltons Held Hostage plot in general|
|Tower Hall — Tordane Tower|
|The entrance to the tower opens into a larger common room for receiving guests. Effort has been made to bring warmth and light to the interior, as well. Rugs have been hung from the stone walls as well as placed on the floor to bring at a welcoming ambiance. There is a large table with several chairs off to the left of the door, a cooking hearth against the back wall, and a wooden staircase that leads up. An antechamber behind the stairs is where the servants live and bed down.|
|Wed Jun 13, 289|
Cherise was all too familiar with having guards in tow, shadowing her every movement while restricted to the Tordane's tower. Perhaps her jaunts around the grounds were to keep things lively for the men rather than her self. As she was seated at the table, her chair turned sidewise to permit an elbow resting upon the wooden surface. A glass decanter of wine was placed while her finger encircled the rim of her cup. Her Nayland guards were close, standing a short distance away from the seated Charlton who summoned up idle topics that served no other purpose other than to pester the men. "How many dogs are in the kennels?" She asked. Another round of twenty questions that was a popular favorite with young toddlers.
Jarod is one of the Stonebridge men-at-arms playing guard for Cherise right now. He is, for his part, rather chatty company himself. Far from being irritated - which the more stoic men probably very much are - he seems to enjoy the banter to some degree. "Prying into the secrets of Tordane Tower, my Lady Cherise? I'm shocked! Why, think of what the Charltons could do if they knew the precise number of hounds we had. Not to mention bitches. Always more bitches than hounds in any highborn house." He says it with an impish twinkle in his eye. "But I shall not betray my sworn lord by giving away his secrets! You should be familiar with our number of knights and guards by now. But hounds? Devious woman. You shall never torture it out of me."
Hugh comes strolling out of the kitchen, holding a piece of chicken and chewing, his mouth full. He's been haunting the kitchen lately as he must be going through yet another growing spurt. The growing distance between the end of his sleeve and his hand, evidence of that. hHe looks at the woman and the guards with some interest. More so when he sees it is Jarod. His face lights up and he swallws the bite of chicken, "Ten days, Ser!" he calls and moves closer. Then the subject matter that the two were talking about sinks in. "What could spies do with /that/ information? I would think th enumber of guards would be more sensitive, right?"
Amusement glowed upon her features as the lady pressed her lips, sweeping her gaze downcast as her smirk deepened. "Bitches are highly necessary for a highborn house… with a kennel." She tacks on there, sliping her fingertips around the cup to poise her wine against the cheek. A finger makes a gesture, "They always prove to be more calculating than the hounds, tempered and well composed. Keep your secrets, I hear they are not so impressive." She exhaled a breath of laughter, turning her head slightly towards her cup as if she may drink from it. "I would never resort to methods of torture, that would imply you have something I covet." A small sip was taken from her cup, the third now and the lady was feeling quite relaxed. Comfortable.
Cherise's attention floated over to the young man emerging from the kitchens, stating the obvious. "Spies make use of all knowledge do they not? I'd truthfully be a horrible spy or perhaps I am a very good one where this imprisonment had been my plan all along?" A less than graceful hand wave gestured to her surroundings. The cup is then pointed to Jarod, "To become better aquainted with you. Just who are you? Are you a father? A secret lover to the ladies of this tower? You may be handsome enough for it."
"I like the company of a good bitch now and then, myself. Usually more entertaining than a dull, well-manner house cat," Jarod quips in return with a wink. As Hugh enters, he waves a hand dismissively. Continuing the joke. "That's where your inexperience is showing, Squire Asterholm. Castle siege defenses, patrol patterns, weapons and arms…useless, compared to the number of hunting hounds a lordly house keeps. What in seven hells in Ser Riordan teaching you?" As for himself, he replies to Cherise wryly. With less humor, or at least more the rueful sort. "Had you asked me a couple months ago you'd have got a different answer, my lady. Today, I am a knight sworn to Tordane Tower. I am called Ser Jarod the Half-Eagle." Lord Terrick's recently evicted bastard son and knighter of women. Yeah, him. "And my affairs, though terribly scandalous, are none of them secret. But you call me handsome again I might just blush, all part of your dastardly spy plot, I'm sure."
Hugh peers over at Jarod as though assessing what it is about the knight that the women think is so handsome. But when Jarod speaks of bitches, he snorts a little and quickly takes another bite to hide his grin. Then as he is asked the question, he looks puzzled before realizing the Jarod is likely teasing. "Oh…not much really, I will admit, Ser. He has been ill and I haven't seen much of him. But I am sure he will get to teaching me about the importance of the hounds soon enough." He then looks at the woman, "Are you a Charlton? I'm Hugh Asterholm, the Lord Regent's squire."
Drinking again Cherise settles into the comforts of her chair as she is given an answer. Arched eyebrows perked over the realization of just who today's guard was. "Ah the bastard." Her facial features settle again. "Though strange to have you here serving your father's historic enemy." Her gaze sweeps over her surroundings, "Not boring after all." Musing to herself mostly, Cherise sets her cup down as a hint for more wine.
"The Regent is ill? How unfortunate for him." The tone was delivered with half the efforts to relay sympathy. "Yes, one of many sequstered to this grande tower." Answering the squire with a lively expression. "Cherise." As there were more than one Charlton woman of worth. "Should you encounter your Ser, young squire, do relay to him that his 'guests' are short of entertainment."
She does return to Jarod, her chin titled upright. "Handsome. Handsome. Handsome."
"The lucky bastard, I think, my lady," Jarod replies glibly. If he takes any offense at being so-described by his illegitimacy, he doesn't show it. "For I'm not doing too poorly, for a man of both my birth and recent scandals. I am wed to a Nayland girl, who was well-received by her family even after deceiving them for years. And, now that the Terricks seem well out of the struggle over Stonebridge, the Nayland claim strikes me as the lawful one." The repeated 'handsome'ing of him doesn't make him blush, but it does make him laugh. "Good to know I'm still that, at least, whatever else I am." He adds for Hugh's benefit, "She is the lady wife of Lord Aleister Charlton. And a far lovelier creature than her lord deserves, it strikes me, from our brief acquaintance."
Hugh says, "He has been ill. He is feeling much better though." The chicken is done, and he gets rid of the bone as discreetly as he can. Perhaps there is one of those hounds wandering around. Then he looks back to the woman and nods politely and says completely straightfaced, "A pleasure to meet you, and I will tell him, My Lady, but I thought you were under arrest and not guests, so that is probably why there isn't much entertainment planned for you." He smiles to Jarod, "I see. She is pretty, isn't she?"
On the subject of scandals Cherise haphazardly shrugs. "You're entitled to your opinion however wrong or right it may be." Someone picked up the cue, a servant in the hall would refill the lady's cup. The perks of being a noble prisoner had been decent for all the coin used up thus far tapped the Nayland coffers. "You're wed to a deceiver, born of a deceptive house with liars for kin." Reaching for her cup Cherise drinks from it again. "I pray your children with the deceiver may find a more honorable path."
She slides a hand across her stomach, resting it there. "They may have mentioned an arrest or something of that sort." Passed off as nothing of importance the fingers against her stomach begin to drum. As for being pretty well, she wouldn't correct them. "Wine and compliments, such things I did not believe prisoner's had."
Jarod bristles some at Cherise's words. The remark about the deceiver he's wed to, at least. But all he replies with is, "I pray they shall as well, my lady, and that the pair of us shall. This is a difficult world to be honest in." To Hugh he says, "She's still a lady, squire, and due a lady's courtesies. It is the men-at-arms of the Charlton house we find quarrel with, not she. Despite her flagrant attempts to spy on our kennels, of course." After that he seems to feel compelled to ask, "Is there anything else you require, my lady? While you're our guest-who-cannot-leave."
Hugh nods to Jarod, and watches carefully how he takes the insult. Somethings are not lost on him. "She is a Lady, of course, just like your bride." He beams and adds, "but I will not share any of our secrets. I can share more chicken. Cook has a big plate in there, and he'll let me have more if I tell him it is for a lady." He himself was mildly threatened if he were to get more. "What sort of entertainment would the lady like?"
In wine there is truth made evident by the lady's continuous consumption of the drink. With a few moments granted for thought Cherise picked up her cup while rising to her feet. "Yes." She nods without failing to stand upright. "I desire to go riding. In the countryside for a day or perhaps half a day." Begining to draw her cup closer to her lips, the lady speaks over it, "Oh you're permitted to accompany me of course. As it would be improper to do so without a trusted escort." A curved smile is displayed for the pair of them. "There was a lake I had passed by not too long ago. The lands are cooler beside and this tower is uncomfortably sweltering."
Partially turning her frame at the mention of food her head tilts when considering it. "You may tell your cook to have a dish prepared for this table." And as if she hadn't insulted the bastard moments ago, "We can feed it to the hounds. Are you hungry Ser?"
The insult seems to roll off Jarod easily enough, though his manner is perhaps not as lightly good-humored as before. Still, her request is considered. "I shall speak to the Regent about it. A stroll by the lake, if nothing more, seems a pleasant distraction. Have you spent any time in the gardens, my lady?" He adds to her and Hugh both, "Lovelier roses you'll not find in the Riverlands, and it breathes easier than inside the walls. I misspent more than a few days out there when I was a boy, and Lord Geoffrey Tordane ruled here as a Terrick bannerman."
Hugh listens to all this and looks extremely puzzled, "Oh, no, My Lady. We could not feed that food to the hounds. That would be a waste." Perhaps they are teasing him again. no matter. He shrugs and listens politely to the talk about the lake and the roses. "So you were here as a boy?"
Cherise is standing beside a large table with one of it's chairs pulled out. A decanter of half drunken wine sits atop of it while the lady holds onto her cup. "On more than a handfull of occasions." She answers plainly Jarod's question as her rear presses against the edge of that long table. "It would, be wouldn't it young squire?" She muses though where the chicken ended up was of no consequence to her.
Down the stair and coming from his own chambers to now join the rest in the tower hall. Of course, Alric still has company by the guards even if the do move with a bit more room between him and they and as he heads towards Cherise and the rest the guards moves to the sides and kind of disappears as they blend into the enviroment. "Lady Cherise. Ser Jarod. Cousin" He offers to them all along with a smile. "I hope things are well with all of you."
Wearing a light blue tunic and brown pants. His hair is a bit messy, as if he has forgotten to fix it after waking up.
"Often, Squire Hugh, when Stonebridge bent the knee to the Roost," Jarod replies to the lad. "My brothers and sisters were fast friends with Lord Tordane's children. I thought Lady Isolde would be kin to me one day, when she wed my brother Lord Jaremy." The memory draws a snort. "Funny how things turn out." Alric's entrance is met with a polite bow. Nothing too flourishy, but deep enough for one of the man's station. "Lord Alric. The lady is a highly entertaining way to spend guard duty, so I can hardly complain. Beats staring at a dungeon wall."
Hugh's expression is one of cluelessness as he tries without success to understand the Charlton woman. He seems relieved to change the expression into a flash of a smile for Alricand he gives a polite bow. "Cousin." He acknowledge's Jarod's answer and then laughs at the comment about the dungeon walls. He makes no move to go fetch any chicken, however.
A hand presses against the table for support as the lady gazes over the shoulder, "Lord Alric, what a pleasant surprise to see you in the tower." She grinned widely, "Ser Jarod here was just giving us," The cup of wine is used to indicate both she and Hugh, "a history lesson regarding his fondness for the Tordanes. Our lawful jailor's according to him."
However as relations are mentioned she glances from Alric to the young man, "Cousin? Imagine that."
Alric offers an incline of his head in reply to Jarod's bow. "I have no doubt about that. Lady Cherise is quite an entertaining person at all times, from what I know." He offers and flashes a smile to Cherise. At her words he chuckles. "I see. Well, lawful to some degree perhaps. Though I don't know if their methods are the best." He replies and grins.
There is a nod about Alric's relation with Hugh. "Yes, the world can feel quite small at times." He offers and just smirks for now.
"The Lord Regent took such a large force on these lands as a show of power, a threat, against his and the Lady of Stonebridge's rule," Jarod says. "It is to my regret you were caught up in it, my lady. That, at least, I hope is rectified. The peace is strained but not unbroken. I hope it shall remains so. Though I've little say in the matter." He 'hopes' a lot of things he has little power to change. As for history, he shrugs. "My mind goes often to the past. Those were pleasant times. Though I suppose all times seem so when you're a boy. Smaller world's a simpler one."
Hugh listens as his elders bounce around topics and ideas and no one ever really says anything right out. "It is a small world. Especially here at Stonebridge. It seems very small here sometimes compared to hag's Mire. But I will make the most of it!" he announces pleasantly. "And it is an honor to serve my Other Lord Cousin."
"His temporary rule." Cherise adds in there. "He is a regent, not Lord of Stonebridge." She huffed with annoyance as her frame turned partially face all three of the males now occupying the tower's hall. "Should things continue as they are, with lack of a presence from the Regent your hopes will be shattered Ser Half Eagle." The turns around completely, wandering over to the other side of the table, her silken hems swept the floors in her wake.
"We shall see how it plays, my lady," Jarod says to Cherise, as stoically as the decidedly not-stoic fellow can manage. It is coming time for the shift of guards to change, however, so he doesn't have to manage it long. The man who's coming to replace him looks decidedly more suited to being stoic. Before he goes, though, he offers Cherise a bow. "It's been an interesting afternoon, my lady, I will say that. My lord. Squire." And off he goes.