|Discussing a Disappearance|
|Summary:||Lyanna seeks out Bastien to have some questions regarding the disappearance of Lord Aleister and Lady Miranda answered.|
|Related Logs:||References Aleister's and Miranda's disappearance, and is some sort of logical consequence to Confusion of Weasels|
|Gardens, Tanglewood Manor|
|Much of these gardens remain largely untouched, since the construction of the Keep; enclosed now by the towering wall and overlooked by the rear of the building. Trees yet linger, old and strong with sprawling boughs and unruly roots in places. The ground remains uneven, as well as set in a lazy slope, with little rocky outcroppings dotting the lush grass here and there. The main body of the lawn is well enough tended.. but these ancient guardians of foliage and flora lend the impression of being far, far removed from the troubles of the Riverlands. Further off toward the east, led to by a neat path along the top of the hill, a rather less wild expanse of growth can be discerned through the trees.|
|December 30th, 289|
The gardens, normally a place of quiet and tranquility in the Tanglewood Manor. That quiet remains in this place, but the air reeks of anything but tranquility. A small entourage of three guards reside quietly in their positions, watching over the newly appointed Head of House to the Ashwood family. Sitting in a chair, with a group of parchments in his lap, Bastien seems enraptured by whatever words are on the scrolls. Strangely, he's wearing his brigandine mail, and looks quite out of place on these grounds that were meant to seem so peaceful and untouched by war.
Entering the gardens through the doors that lead into and out of the Great Hall is the Ambassador to Highfield, a character that might seem out of place in a similar way, for this office has been awarded by Lord Walder Frey to his granddaughter, a young lady of merely 22 years. She does look charming with her dark brown hair that has been braided and twirled at the back of her head into the form of a snail, fastened with several pins of silver. And her attire of plain elegance is a dress in the grey and blue of House Frey. Deep blue eyes lighten up as they glimpse the current Head of House Ashwood, and Lyanna approaches the seat, the table and the man with swift and determined steps, followed by her Septa and one of her Frey guards. "Lord Bastien. I hope I do not disturb you?" she begins, glancing over the heap of parchments. Although her words, uttered in a polite tone, seem to be a statement rather than a question.
Glancing up from the parchments splayed across his lap, Bastien gives Lyanna a curt glance before returning his gaze back to the papers. "I've little time for politics right now, Lady Lyanna." Though his statement is dismissive, the man has a way of saying such things without sounding malicious. As the words leave his mouth, he rolls up the parchment into its scroll and sounds a short whistle, which has a young squire coming from who knows where to hand the man a new scroll. "I was trained for war, not bureaucracy." The words are spoken to nobody in particular, grumbled under his breath as he starts to unwrap the string that holds the scroll closed.
Lyanna stands there, answering his curt glance with a nod. Yet she does not seem to be 'dismissed' that easily. A certain tension can be sensed in her posture, the way her left foot taps on the ground for a short moment before she exhales and continues: "I see you are busy. But I have not come to bother you with mere politics, Lord Bastien. Although politics are a topic I would gladly discuss at some point. But not today." She pauses, glances to the new scroll that is about to be opened by Bastien. But before the knight gets the chance to cast a glance on it she speaks up again. "A matter, that might concern you as well. It should. The disappearance of your brother, the Lord of Highfield."
Lyanna might as well be gone, with the way that Bastien ignores her words. That is, until she mentions his brother. Halfway through unrolling the parchment, he stops and closes it in one swift motion without looking up at the woman. His features do not change, stoic and cold as ever, but his lips finally move after a slightly too long pause. "What do you know of the matter?" Even in his new station, the man speaks in a curt manner more suitable for giving orders on a battlefield than mingling with nobles at a ball.
"Thank you for gracing me finally with your attention. Ser." Lyanna says not without a slight hint of sarcasm in her voice. Her address however, makes it clear that she understands who Bastien is - or rather was. A master of arms. A knight. Not a whiny nobleman. And so her mien seems placated as she replies: "I know you must have a lot on your mind, your shoulders even. First the steward leaves, and now Lord Aleister's disappearance forces you to deal with all this… stuff." A gesture towards all the parchments tries to make up for her momentary lack of the right word. "What I know of the matter? Not much, good ser. Your brother left with his cousin, Lady Miranda, for the Twins. For negotiations with my grandfather." She bites her lip, frowning, as she is too aware that she of all should have been more informed in this matter - and she is not. "So it is I that comes to you to inquire. Are there any news? How long they have been missing? What has been done to find them and to investigate what has happened to them?"
There's a brief hint of disappointment behind the large man's eyes as he discovers the she's come to him to inquire, rather than to inform. Leaning over his knees, the man places the parchment down by his feet and sits up, before folding his hands in his lap and giving Lyanna a good, hard stare. Finally, he speaks. "A few days, likely a week. I have personally ordered our best trackers to find them. There is little we can do other than wait and hope." Her reference to what he's had to shoulder is for the most part ignored, the noble knight would never openly complain about his duties. Even still, it's with an easily implied regretful glance that he looks back to the parchment. "There is no news."
After listening to Bastien's answer, a sigh escapes Lyanna's lips after his last statement. "They were accompanied by guards, were they not? What could have happened to stop a capable fighter such as your brother?" she muses, in a slightly lower and more thoughtful tone. "As there has been some contact with the Twins I assume Lord Walder has offered his assistance in finding them?" Lyanna shifts her weight from one leg to the other, before she adds: "If he hasn't I will write him right away, asking for it. That is if you have no objections."
Lifting himself out of his chair, Bastien barely misses stepping on the parchment, and shakes his head. "Do what you will, I will not stop you from trying to help." He looks over towards the squire in waiting and nods his head towards the Great Hall. "Boy, remove these things." A few short steps and the large man is nearer to Lyanna. "Capable fighter or not, my brother has powerful enemies." In one split moment, the man shows how he truly feels beneath that facade of stoicism and cold steel with a short few words. "I fear the worst." And suddenly he's walking away, heading towards the Great Hall.
Lyanna's eyes cloud slightly at Bastien's first remark. "Then I will do what I can. Even if it does not earn me your gratitude." she remarks her gaze dropping to her hands as he approaches her. "I suspect you are speaking of the Naylands…? I would not think they would dare to act so decidedly against my grandfather's orders." When she raises her gaze to meet that of the preliminary Head of House the Frey lady realizes he has walked past her. She turns to see him heading towards those doors she has emerged from mere minutes ago. "I… am also worried about Lady Miranda. She is not a capable fighter, as far as I know." she calls after him in an attempt to make him stop and even turn. Her voice a bit shaky and small, clearly not the voice of an Ambassador - rather that of a worried young lady that is concerned about a friend's fate.
Stopping a few feet away, Bastien looks up towards the place where the sky meets the walls and responds to her worry with the raising and falling of his shoulders. The shrug is accompanied by that low vibration that is his voice. "The Naylands. Ironborn assassins bent on avenging their failures in the war. Extremist Charltons who despise us for choosing to live. There is no way of knowing until our trackers return. Just as with Lord Aleister, in the case of Lady Miranda, all we can do is wait."
Her complexion is a bit pale as Lyanna nods, straightening her posture in some sort of stubborn refusal to give in to desparation. "Then wait is what we will do." She catches up with Bastien, approaching with steps that are slightly less swift and determined than before. Gracing him with a curtsey as she passes him she adds: "I trust you are doing all that is in your power. But now pray excuse me. There is a letter that waits to be written and a message that needs to be sent. Lord Bastien." With a nod that shows respect for his position, his person and his way of handling the situation the Frey Ambassador brushes past him then through the double doors that lead into the Great Hall, her guard and septa in tow.