|Escape From Stonebridge|
|Summary:||Penelope, Dania, and Wayland Frey's page make their escape from Stonebridge and others are added to their number along the way.|
|Related Logs:||Everything related to the war that is coming to Stonebridge|
|Between Stonebridge and Terrick's Roost|
|Dirt trails, wildflowers, woods…nature stuff.|
|September 09, 289|
It has been an exhausting, frantic several hours as Penelope with the help of some friends has managed to load her equipment, what of her sheared wool pelts remain, and her family's personal belongings into the wagon. The elderly lady who watched Quintan throughout the seamstress' equally laborious task of sewing a dozen gambesons for Ser Longbough agreed to stay on long enough to keep the two-year old out of mischief while the packing progressed. Now, the sun has begun to set and the nearly empty town is almost eerily quiet filled primarily with the noises of the evening…crickets, cicadas, the call of frogs, and the chatter of birds finding their roost.
Glancing over her shoulder, assuring herself that her small son is tucked safely into a nest of blankets with his toys in the wagon bed, Penelope gives a heavy sigh and tries to settle her awkward, heavy bulk more comfortably on the wagon seat. "If I did not know first hand the horrors of war and a siege, I do not know that I would be able to bring myself to do this tonight." Weariness lines her young face.
"You do not have a choice." Comes a response from Dania who is riding a horse, she moves the horse towards the wagon. With her is another child who is riding a pony. The horse is of study breeding as he is a draft cross, the pony shows he is of good breeding and the child is dressed without house colors and appears to be about nine years old. He follows her closely. "How are you doing?" She asks her.
Dania has taken off her wide brimmed straw hat for the evening and she is dressed in a long brown gown and apron dress. Her normally neat appearance is a little flustered. Attached to her saddle are her saddle bags and bedrolls both appear to be bursting at the seams.
Taking up the reins Penelope glances at the healer and offers a tired smile, "I will survive." Making a soft clicking sound with her tongue, she guides the horse pulling the wagon around and starts off down the dirt road out of the city. Not even glancing over her shoulder she says, "I am alright to go far enough that we will be out of the town proper if not entirely off Tordane-Nayland land." A blanket has been folded and placed beneath her for padding, and the pregnant woman is grateful for it as the wooden wagon creaks and lurches along down the road. Once started, she finally allows herself to look at the young boy and addresses him softly, "It is well that you can come with us child. You are welcome to stay with me and share my home…wherever I end up making it until you are called for. Please, call me Mistress Penny…and my son is Quintan."
"Thank you mistress." The young boy says to her his face is pale and there is worry in his eyes. "I was told to listen to you and Mistress Dorsey." He tells hers. Her his voice breaks a little bit and he swallows hard as he tries to fight back tears.
"It will be okay my dear." Dania tells him gently. "Stay focused on your pony and Mistress Penny needs some help with minding Quintan. We are going to be moving slower than normal, because I do not know about the two of you but I think we will need to rest a little bit during the Journey. Mistress if you need for me to drive, I can. Sparrow is good at being ponied whether it be with another horse or a behind a wagon." Her horse and the pony are matching the movement of the cart.
"It will be alright young one." Penelope says kindly, "As you can see, I am in great need of help…and it is quite chivalrous that you should be here in my hour of need. For now…ride strong." Looking at Dania she replies with a smile, "I am fine as long as we take it slow. The babe seems to have settled. He kicked mightily there for awhile and it was painful, but the movement seems to be perhaps comforting to him." The reins are clutched in her hands, occasionally she glances back to reassure herself that Quintan is well. This late in the day the boy is sleepy and drowses in his nest of blankets.
"You know labor pains if they come on strongly we will set up camp for the night. The Charltons can be damned." Dania tells her. "When we make camp Brannon, I will need your help." She tells the boy. "Your help and your chivalry is much needed and appreciated as Mistress Penny has said, I share her sentiment."
The page nods. "Yes Mistress Penny. I am Brannon Rivers." He offers to her. He then grows quiet.
"I don't think that the labor will come tonight. I do not think the babe has dropped yet." A tiny hand kneads at her side, "Though I can't imagine I have much more room for him to grow." The exhausted woman gives a giddy laugh, "I will be sure to let you know. I just want us away from the fighting. When the Charlton lines are behind us….then we can stop." Penelope glances over at the page on his pony, "A pleasure to meet you Master Brannon. Tell me, do you know how to do things like make camp fires and cook out of doors?" Her eyes twinkle, "My husband was a hedge knight before he died, we used to travel often and camp. I have all sorts of useful skills I could teach you."
"I can start a fire, but I am not good at cooking we eat field rations." The young man responds back. "I would gladly learn from you mistress." He says to her. His pony is now being ridden beside the Wagon. The horse is on a long loose rein.
"Oh I agree with you, but if we cannot get through the lines then we will join them or will have to go around, we should still be able to get around by going through the woods and the through some of the outlaying farms. I will ask the farmers first, but I have a feeling they will allow us or will put us up for the night." Dania frowns as she speaks. "If they have not fled that is." She too is riding her horse on a long rein but her legs are keeping contact with him so she is not caught off guard should he shy or someone tries to take advantage of them.
Transfering the reins to one hand, Penelope massages her lower back "There's a large canvas tent in my supplies. We will not necessarily need to impose upon empty farms. Ser Rorgan and I had two, but he took one to the Iron Isles with him as part of his gear." Needless to say, the second tent did not return. Pushing those thoughts aside, the seamstress continues "I truly would prefer to avoid farms. In times of war, those are the first to be raided for supplies and able bodies." As if in response to her chain of thoughts, she flicks the reins to urge her horse on faster. Glancing towards the young boy who is not all that much older than her son, she adds "War is ugly young Master. Sometimes though, it is necessary. To be able to fight and wield a weapon in defense of those you care about and for causes you care about is not a bad thing. Also know that it is not craven to feel fear. Everyone does, it is natural. It is when you do not face your fears, and you let fear only guide your decisions that it becomes not right" My the mother is waxing motherly with the advice today. Though likely, as exhausted as she looks to be she is merely talking to keep herself from breaking down entirely.
"This I am afraid is war between houses. The outlying farms will be safe until the sunrise on the morrow or the day after they will be focused on who is doing what at the moment." Dania comments back. "I do not agree with either house. Then again I am also an outsider looking in." She adds. She keeps her leg on her horse. Her blue eyes continuously scan their surroundings just in case. Sometimes it is a good to be on the paranoid side of things. "The Roost though poor has a lot to offer." She says to both as they continue to walk and move. "I am sorry for your loss good Mistress." Dania tells Penny. "If you need anything you just have to let me know and I mean anything that is outside midwifery." She tells her.
Then nine year old boy on his pony nods. "Yes mistress I do understand." He tells her. He too is looking around and taking in his surroundings. Where will we stay once we get there?"
"Either the inn, or the leatherworkers, I stay with them and you are both welcome to take my place. They have a spare room and two daughters. There mother was ill used by the Iron Born. She has had some trouble so their father likes them to be around others." She says to them. "Myself I can stay with my brother."
"I have plenty of coin now. I could not refuse Ser Longbough's contract. Enough coin that we might be able to settle wherever we choose Master Brannon." Penelope flashes a smile at him before glancing up at Dania, "I appreciate your generosity Mistress Dania. I…truthfully…don't know what to do. It had been my hope to get settled in Stonebridge and make it a home before the babe was born. Now…" her shoulders lift in a helpless shrug, "I just need to find a place that is safe for a few months to think and make some decisions." The smile on her lips softens, "I was never a vassal to any House and neither was Ser Rorgan, it gives me more freedom I suppose. I did like Stonebridge though, the market thrived and there was a good influx of materials for my dyes and flax to make linen. A crofter nearby had excellent sheep for wool. I don't know…perhaps when things are settled we might go back?"
As the sky turns grey with the first breath of the night, a rather colourful figure on an apparently tired mare, rides down the road. With a rich, but worn out cloak over his dark, blue doublet a man in his twenties is seen, though the bold smile he usually carries around the corners of his mouth has become a rather bitter expression, skimming his surroundings concernedly. Garion seems to be quite in a hurry, as he trots on, his lute and his few belongings well laced to his saddle. As he catches up with the wagon and the women, he hesitates a few heartbeats and soon finds back to his usual, bold grin, as he greets them.
"And again the Seven crossed our path, gold-hearted mid-wife. And I see you brought brave warrior, a young knight and his sister with you.", he says in a quicksilvery tune, eyeing the small gathering. "Isn't it a pleasant evening for a ride?", he adds with a small peak of irony.
"It will settle and then become unsettled again depending on what a certain lady gives birth too if she can come to term." Dania says to her. Her words are honest. "There is Highfield, Heronshurst and Segrad. Those three areas are decent." She tells her. "You are welcome to that spot; it will do the girls some good and their mother as well. I am gone too much to be of much help to them. I am ride a circuit. There are just too few of us." She adds. "Since the invasion and now this little spat." She shrugs her shoulders. "Hopefully some peace can be found." She smiles then. "Good Mistress you are lucky to have options."
She sees the rider and she brings her tall gelding to a halt. He stands there quietly as she eyes the other rider in the fading light. But when he calls out his greeting she smiles and soon that smile turns to a grin. "By the Lady Crone it is good to see you, Mistress Penny May I introduce to you Master Garion Fairfield, I believe it was. I like to call him the silver-tongued Minstrel. Master Garion may I introduce you to, Mistress Penny and young Master Rivers is escorting us. I would introduce you her youngest son but he is resting. Are you heading towards the Roost and if so would you like to join us? We are slow moving though." She adds.
"Well, it will be good to be settled somewhere for a few months, and if I can provide some good while I am there all the better" Penny replies. A small hand lifts and scrubs tiredly at her eyes, it is a moment before she realizes that the others have halted and there is a stranger in their midst. "Whooo" the pregnant girl tells her horse as she tugs lightly back on the reins, signaling a stop. Twisting in her seat her body is tense until she sees that Dania knows the tall man and then slowly she relaxes. Shyly, the teenager ducks her head in greeting and offers a smile "Well met Master Fairfield. I am Mistress Penelope Copperfells. My son is, as Mistress Dania has said, sleeping in the wagon."
Courteously Garions adumbrates one of the bows, he so often observed by people of nobler blood, as his mare stops as well. "Garion of Fairmarket it is, as well as a pleasure and an honor, comely ones." With a polite nod he adds "Master.", before turning his attention back to the women "Oh how could I deny the offer of such a pleasant company at these… days -at any day, of course, though these special ones might disturb such pretty ears like ours with the nasty sound of quarreling men, hitting each other with their silvery sticks…" A quirky grin appears on his face, as he speaks these words. "Indeed, I heard the Roost would be fitting better for a peaceable men like me. And you have to be a princess riding in disguise, mistress." , he compliments Penelope, before sighing and continuing in a more serious tone. "What have you heard about the road? Is it still save enough to sneak out of here?"
"I am hoping that they will let us pass to be honest. We need to get past the Charlton's lines. Once we have done that we will be free. This is the one time I wish I had my brother's gift for gab." Dania says to both. The boy riding looks worried. "Focus on riding lad, focus on riding and helping us get through here. We will need it." She tells him and then her attention is back to both of the adults. "Your company would be welcomed Master Bard. Also, I am hoping that because we are not affiliated with either house they will let us pass." She looks up at the now darkening sky. "We should keep moving." She waits for the wagon to get moving before she does.
A flush rises and the bard's words charm a smile from the seamstress' full lips. "Get on with ye, now I know why Mistress Dania calls you the silver-tongued bard." Her bluegreen eyes twinkle merrily, dispelling some of the exhaustion for awhile. Listening, she dips her head in an occasional nod before replying, "Yes, the Charltons have honorably stuck to their promise and are allowing the smallfolk, women, and children out. Granted, we are not through the lines but I do not see that they will halt us. It would be more fiscally sound of them to leave the smallfolk unharmed so that they will be willing to return when the fuss is over." Glancing at the boy she asks, "Would you like to ride beside me Master Brannon? Take over the reins?" In order to give him a distraction the pregnant mother admits, "I could use the help."
"Then let's just hope our horses are quicker than the madness of war and loot. The Charlton's are mild ones, you say? Seven bless them! I also hope to pick up a skin of wine and a piece of bread somewhere I'm already lucky enough to have brought a few supplies with me, but though I don't need much apart from the strings of my lute and the look of a fair maiden, I found everyone squirreling away their food, not willing to sell it for everything one could offer.", Garion answers with raised eyebrows. "Like animals preparing for winter.", he mutters, slowly riding next to them.
They are they know what happen to the Roost. Though many will learn that this is different from what happen the Iron Born, though the Charltons are basing this move off of honor from my understanding. Therefore they are trying to save face with the other houses. Or at least that is my thought on the matter. Mind you I think we will be back here in this situation again if they do not settle who is what and who has claim. If Danea is with child and that child is a boy then there will be no questions. But if she is not then there will be questions." Dania says as she casts a look at Penny and offers her an impish smile. "He really does live up to the name." Then she looks at Brennon. "You can tie him to the back of the wagon or I can pony your pony." She offers.
The boy looks to Penny and nods as he dismounts and runs his stirrups us. He then loosens his girth a little bit before he goes to get a rope halter from his saddle bags. The rope halter is then exchanged for the bridle. The lead rope is then handed to Dania. She takes it from him with a smile and he goes to join Penny.
"I was able to bring a fair amount of provender. What I have you are welcome to share Master Bard." Offering a shy smile, the girl scoots her blanket padding over a bit along with herself. With her bulk it is a rather labor intensive process to move anywhere these days but room is found for Brannon on the wagon seat. "Alright…lets me off. Parts of me that I shall not name are quite sore and I am ready to make camp for the night." She shows the young page how to flick the reins to get the horse moving and the wagon going forward.
"And again I'm a lucky one, since the Seven blessed me with yet another golden-hearted lady to cross my path.", Garion grins apparently pleased by the suggestion of a rest. "Let's try to find a place, to sink in the Mothers arms and the Maiden's dreams, yes.", he answers, letting one of his strong hands sink into his tired mare's mane. Again he eyes the little gathering closely. "I am used to the veils of night's sky, when the weather is fair enough, though I always prefer the soft blanketts of a proper bed… but you… comely Dania, mistress Penelope…", he says in thoughts, before asking directly "Why did you say, your husband didn't accompany you?"
The page takes the reins as he is shown. Once he has them in his hand he flicks them and sends the horse forward. He then seems to relax and the first smile in days appears on his lips. "Like this Mistress?" He asks her.
"I am not married." Comes Dania's response and I am no stranger to the road." She moves her steed forward with a silent command given by her legs. The poor pony is dragged along beside her. His twelve hands verses the horses 16 hands. She goes back to scanning their surrounding area.
"Yes…just like that Brannon. You are doing well." Her dainty hands demonstrate how to hold them steady, "The horse knows what to do, you just have to guide it if there are turns or we need to stop." Penelope gives the child a fond and motherly smile before sighing and bracing her hands on the backboard so that she can stretch a bit, "My…husband" the teenager begins, though falters. After two weeks of pushing herself to the breaking point to get finished with Ser Longbough's project, Penny's control is not what it normally is and thus tears well up in her eyes. Scrubbing them away with the heel of her hand she cannot continue for a moment until finally she says, "Ser Rorgan Copperfells, a more noble knight you will never meet, died on the Iron Isles in battle fighting with Seagard's contingent."
As much as his smile widens as the midwife speaks of no husband at all, it sinks down on Garion's face, as Penelope talks about the death of hers. "I… my condolences is all I could offer. And my thanks to lead me to this save place… sad, sad times falls upon this land, to sad for such flowers like us. Maybe a the sound of…", he hesitates, but begins with a quiet, deep voice. "
Strength stoops unto the grave
Worms feed on knight's so brave
Swords may not fight with fate
Earth still holds ope her gate
Come,come! The bells do cry
Now I still sing, but I must die-
Mother, have mercy on us!
"And she will have mercy on us, I'm sure. ",he closures. "But my apologies, comely ones, sleep calls a man away, I feel like I haven't slept for moons.", and laboriously he tries to make the best of a bed for the night, out of his few belongings.
"Mistress Penny! I know I am not your husband but I can help and I will grow." The young boy says to her with such conviction as she wipes the tears from her eyes. He keeps his eyes on the fading road. But there is such a look of determination on his young face. He is focused on both the conversation and he road.
Dania on the other hand grows quiet as she listens to both Penny and Garion and when Garion sings his song and speaks to Penny she finds herself blinking back tears. "Mistress Penny, your child will be born as safe as possible I will do everything in my power to have it be so." She tells her softly.
The young boy's words distract the seamstress' from the unhappiness that she finds in the bard's beautiful song. Wiping at her eyes again she gives a tear-filled laugh, "Oh Master Brannon, you already are a fine help. And you indeed will grow to help your Master or Mistress." Her eyes move to regard Dania with a smile, "You are very kind Mistress Dania. I feel quite safe in your capable hands." Inhaling deeply, Penelope exhales in a sigh as the small part reins in for the night. "Now, we must make camp." She glances at the Bard who as curled up as is, "I prefer a bit of a tent. Would you care to help me Master Brannon?"
"I can set it up. Lord Frey let me set up his and showed me how!" The young boy said as they find a good spot to bring the horses to a halt. "I can do the tent and the fire." There is a low chuckled out of Dania. "aye that we can do, I will find the fire wood Mistress and I have some tea for you to drink."
Nodding, Penelope says softly "I fear it will be all I can do too get down from the wagon and Quintan to bed." Gently she pats Brannon's shoulder and then points, "The tent is there towards the back of the wagon bed where it can be accessed easily. If you can get that set up and the bedrolls down, I will see about making our beds alright?" Smiling she says, "The Seven have blessed me with such good friends in my time of need."
"You yourself have been blessed. It has nothing to do with the seven." Dania points out as she herself dismounts. "I can see to the harness and the horses." She adds as she moves to started tethering the horses to the trees. She then goes to offer a hand to Penelope as she gets down.
"Mistress, you have blessed me." The boy tells her with a blush. Though his eyes widen at Dania's blasphemous statement.
Gratefully accepting Dania's assistance, the pregnant teenager slowly maneuvers down off of the wagon. Her feet hit the ground and she tries to bite back a soft groan. "You are sweet Brannon" she murmurs with a smile. Hands slowly press and massage her belly as she works to catch her breath. Finally she heaves a sigh, "Alright…to put together a bite to eat. Can you start the fire for me first Master Brannon? I can begin our meal while the tent is raised." Rolling her shoulders, she continues to try to ease the kinks out of her overtired muscles.
Nathaniel is working his way slowly and carefully among the dense undergrowth, pausing occasionally to examine limbs that snagged dressed when the women weren't aware, hair from horses' tales, and other telltale signs of human passage. He sighs and mutters, "I could be relaxing on the coast right now. But no, I had to start worrying about that woman, her son, and this accursed war. That Mistress Taken is probably right. I'm naive for giving a rat's tale's worth of worry to people." Perhaps he's crazy, or perhaps he's talking to the long-eared hound who is walking ahead on a long leather leash, sniffing the ground constantly and leading the young man on a sure path toward the women and boy.
The young nine year old boy goes to start a fire. It is now dark and the moon and the stars seem to glow in the sky. Dania moves to get the tent out of the wagon and the other items they will need for cooking. As for the fire there is plenty of dry grass and broken limbs to get it started. The boy is diligent and had been taught well. He cleans up the fire area and gets what he will need. Then he uses his flint and steel. The cooking pot and small frying pan are placed where Penny can reach it. Once this is done Dania is working on seeing to the horses. The sound of a far off voice. Has Dania raising her voice and pausing in her task. The boy also stops and his eyes go wide as he reaches for a dagger and moves to put himself between Penny and the voice. "Who goes there!" Dania in the mean time moves to pick up the frying pan.
Watching over the boy, intently observing his actions Penelope praises him "Oh well done Master Brannon. I can see Lord Frey taught you well." Smiling, she gives a soft tsk and rests a gentle hand on his shoulder "You are brave young one, but not all strangers are enemies. Just look at the sleeping bard over there. While caution is wise being prepared to offer a warm welcome is just as good a skill." With a soft laugh she inclines her head to where Garion sleeps soundly on his pack and things. Oblivious to the commotion, little Quintan sleeps in the wagon bed in his nest of blankets clutching his carved wooden soldiers.
The hound bays loudly and strains forward. "Aelfred! Shhh!" the young man hisses. "Do you want to wake everyone from here to the Cape?" Then he hears the challenge from ahead, cried in a voice that is definitely not that of a soldier unless either side has taken to filling their ranks with boys who should be pages. He holds the leash tightly, stands straight, and calls loudly enough to be heard but not enough to carry as far as the hound's bay, "I come in peace. I'm looking for a woman, a mistress from Stonebridge. She is … heavy with a child. I'm concerned for her safety." He pauses and then urges the hound, "Now, keep quiet."
"Well then come towards the fire and be welcomed at our camp." Dania calls out as she places the frying pan down. "Be at ease Brannon, he is a Retainer from Terrick's roost. Are you trying to give us cause us to drop dead of fright Nathaniel?" She calls out to him.
The boy in the meantime lowers his weapon. "Yes mistress Penny." He says to her as he swallows hard. His face is pale and his eyes are wide. He does not move from his place next to Penny yet.
At the words called out from the darkness, Penelope begins to laugh. Overwrought, she just sinks down to the ground and continues to laugh until she cries. Her hands scrub at her face as she says "I know not who that is, but apparently the Seven have blessed me with more friends than I realized." Sighing she gives a reassuring smile to the page, "I am not sure who this Nathaniel is, but again Mistress Dania has friends everywhere young Master. Go get a skin of water from the wagon and the brown pack of supplies. I will start us dinner." Lifting a hand from her spot on the ground she gives Brannon a pat, "Then you can help Mistress Dania with the tent while I cook."
Nathaniel coils the length of leather so that he he has a tight rein on the floppy old red hound, and then steps closer toward the fire. "If I did, that wasn't my intent," he assures. "Talk to the master here," he adds, nodding to the large hound whose nose and tail seem to be in a race, the first to sniff and the second to wag. Nathaniel's eyes slowly survey the camp and he nods to Penelope and then the nine-year-old boy. He notes the large lump that is the sleeping Garion. "Mistress? We met once, briefly, when you were returning with a wagon-load of wool. I helped your son down from it." Then he frowns and he looks with concern at Peneloope. "You called him Quintan. Where is he? I'd judge that if he is lost you'd be looking. Still, if I'm wrong, we'll find him." He jiggles the leather lead to indicate the dog whose tale is bashing the backs of the courier's legs.
There is a slow shake of her head and an amused look from Dania. "Finish the fire Master Rivers and then you and I can see to the tent as Mistress Penny bids. In the meantime I will finish the horses." She looks from Penny to Nathaniel and then she grins. She moves towards her horse. Picking up a hoof pick she picks his hooves and then moves on to the cart horse and last but not least the pony. She has grown quiet as she works on the horses hooves.
Brennon in the meantime finishes tending the fire and adding fuel to it. He seems to relax a little as Dania is now relaxed and Penny is relaxed. It would seem that he has grown to completely trust the two women.
"Oh…yes!" Penelope's face flushes in embarrassment "I apologize Master. I am afraid I am horribly forgetful these days." Too tired to even make an attempt at standing she gestures to the wagon, "You are so kind I am undone." This statement is delivered quite simply and honestly before she continues, "Quintan is sleeping sound in the back of the wagon until we wake him to eat." Brushing a sweaty strand of hair from her face she invites, "Will you not join us Master…" there is a pause and she brightens, "Master Nathaniel Corbitt. Mistress Dania and young Master Brannon Rivers have been quite kind to assist me in an attempt to reach Terrick's Roost." Needing the supplies to start dinner, Penny struggles to her feet. In a gesture that seems natural to her, she brushes the bits of leaf litter and grass from her skirts and then begins to waddle towards the wagon.
Nathaniel smiles and bows when Penelope, after a moment of uncertainty, recalls him. "I will not only join, but help if you will allow, mistress," he offers. "Please, stay seated and rest yourself." He leads the hound to a spot far from the others and ties him to a tree. "You're fortunate to have made it this far. The pickets have thickened around the town. Even in your state, you might face more challenges than are healthy." He unslings a small pack from his shoulder and settles it near the fire. "I wasn't sure who was with you, so I brought what medicines and food I could buy," he explains. "I'm sure that it's not much, but I offer it." He watches Brennon tending the fire, and comments with a grin, "That's a fine fire. If you made it, lad, someone taught you well." Then his gaze shifts to Dania, and he asks, "Would you like me to help with the horses, mistress? Two can work more quickly than one."
"I am almost done here Master Nathaniel, please rest and help her get the supplies. She promised to cook." Dania offer them both a warm smile that turns to a grin. "I hear she has a fair hand at it and for this I am grateful." She is now moving to give the horses a good rubdown. Where they chose to camp is also not far from a small bit of a stream that at this time of the year is more like a trickle of water.
The young boy look up at him and announces proudly. "Lord Frey taught me. He told me I was to come with them." He explains and then frowns and then he smiles again. "So I am doing as I was told and you seem alright and they know you." He adds. He looks up at Penny again. "Want me to fetch it mistress and you can rest?"
"I am quite capable to make dinner and am not entirely helpless yet" is the seamstress' amused reply, "Though your kindness and concern overwhelms me Master Nathaniel. I cannot think why or how you came to look for me…but I am glad that you have done so." Glancing at Brannon, Penelope gives a nod, "Yes Brannon, that is kind of you. While I won't rest I will get things ready by the fire." Turning she begins to waddle awkwardly back to the fire. Her focus narrows to one task at a time, pushing her way through towards the eventual goal of laying down. Right now, she begins to prepare the fire, using a long stick to carefully nudge some coals to the edge that she can use.
Nathaniel nods and circles the fire to approach the wagon. "I'm quite rested just to know that all of you are safe," he calls over his shoulder to Dania. "Mistress …" He pauses for a moment, then exclaims, "Copperfells! That's it. Mistress Copperfells. What drove me here was the thought of you trapped in Stonebridge so close to your time. 'She has quite a burden already,' I thought, 'without fearing ill treatment from rough soldiers.' Now, then, we'll all pitch together and have things settled more quickly." Then he turns to see the page following, and nods. "I started my work at your age, lad, and keeping a good fire was important. It'll see you through a great deal." He begins to hand packages of food to the boy.
The boy nods and Dania fishes up with the horses and moves to get the tent set up. The boy scrambles up to help her. He moves quickly and he really does know what he is doing. He is still a bit wide eyed and talking as he is used to the to be seen and not heard. But he offers a warm smile to Penny now and again. He looks to back to the messenger. "Your dad did he teach you or another?" He asks.
Dania looks over at Penny. "That is why you are cooking and I am not. I rather eat your than mine. If you need any more cushioning you can take one of blankets from my bed roll."
Water, dried meat, dried vegetables, and a handful of dried herbs go into a pot that is set amidst the coals. A lid is placed on and awkwardly using a pair of sticks the pregnant teenager heaps about three more coals onto the lid. "Now we will have a good stew in awhile." Penelope gives the others a tired smile and near the fire lays down on her side, uncaring that the ground is hard and unable to stay upright any longer. "I….just…a bit of rest while it cooks. Half of an hour." Yawning, she mumbles and struggles to stay awake…but just cannot and her eyes droop closed.