Page 328: Jousting Practice
Jousting Practice
Summary: Lord Justin is practicing alone against the quintain with the lance in the green when Nathaniel comes along.
Date: 12/June/2012
Related Logs: None related persay.
Justin Nathaniel 
The Green, Terrick's Roost
The Green is a large field of deep green grass, nearly flat, that runs along the base of the towers. The road into town runs along the far edge, hemming it in neatly to a confined area where beyond a line of trees serves as a subtle windbreak. This area is most often used for drilling or practice for the guards but also serves as home for festivals, tournements, and another other gathering that might require the space for a large number of the local residents. A well-trodden path winds around the side of the wall and moves towards the coastline. Another heads southwest, toward Kingsgrove.
June 12th, 289

Finally the stormy weather seems to be breaking. After days of storms and clouds, the dawns clear and bright. The ground is yet muddy in places but not too bad for the most part since much of the ground is sandy or stony here, draining off quickly. A man is out upon the green, dressed predomintely in black with a plain doublet and dark grey trousers. He rides upon a pale grey gelding that is nearly white with darker grey legs, mane and tail. Justin's dark hair is sweaty as he turns the horse, carrying a lance as the animal wheels around for another pass at the quintain that is set up for practice. There's a groom standing by incase he's wanted, not looking much like he's eager since he's no squire to know what to do if his lord drops the lance and wishes for a replacement, having to be given instructions.

His horse blows and stamps a hoof, the normally quiet gelding roused with the exercise. Justin holds the lance upright and then puts his spurless boot heels to flank to goade the gelding to run another pass. The lance tip drops as the young Terrick practices what he hasn't done in far too many months.

<FS3> Justin rolls Animal Handling: Great Success.
<FS3> Justin rolls Spears: Failure.

Having arrived at the Roost in the midst of the raging storm, Nathaniel now proceeds to familiarize himself with this world of lords and ladies that is new to him, but which he will begin to serve soon. He drifts slowly along the grounds, taking note of places where a humble retainer might await orders. He kneels at the foot of one of the trees that edge the green, and peers into the branches at a bird singing there. He smiles. Then the sound of the galloping gelding and the jingle of his rider catch his attention. He watches while the man charges a target, and winces when the spear misses its mark. He steps closer to watch the mount in particuler, smiling with appreciation at the grace of the horse's stride.

Sweaty with his morning's efforts, Justin guides the horse in more or less perfectly, using his legs more than bothering with the reins to get the grey lined up and charging down the lane. Dirt flies up behind the horse's iron shod hooves and it looks like an excellant pass except that the lance wavers and then misses the quintain. The Terrick rushes past it and then slows and turns his grey, looking back with a grimace, breathing hard with his efforts. Many passes he has done already, the ground torn up fresh with a dozen or more runs the past hour. Feeling the stiffness and fatigue down his left side through his previous injuries, Justin prepares for another pass. Reins and a shield are in his left hand, lance in his right though he has to line up the lance to the left side of his horse's neck to aim for the quintain. A brief pause, then he sets the gelding to thunder down towards the target once more.

<FS3> Justin rolls Animal Handling: Good Success.
<FS3> Justin rolls Spears: Great Success.

Ah! /This time/ the horse is right on if not as perfect as before in his speed and alignment. Justin's face is serious, his focus better as he gets the lance better set - there is a resounding thwack as the wooden spear impacts the shield on the quintain and the rider ducks and is past before the fake arm with the wooden mace can swing around and hit him in return! The grey gallops a few more strides before slowing and turning once more, closer now to where Nathaniel kneels and watches. The lance is dropped to the ground and the horse stopped, Justin feels his left side that aches.

Nathaniel glares at the glum groom, shakes his head, but does not say anything. Nathaniel is no squire, but even he knows that a dropped lance can be a danger to horse or rider on the field. He looks around, and seeing no one else available, takes initiative to run out to the spot to retrieve the long shaft of wood. He looks up to the rider and sees the man rubbing his side. "Lord? Shall I run and fetch a healer?" he offers. He does not know whether the man is lord, knight, or commoner, but erring on the side of flattery is safe.

Justin throws off the shield from his left arm as well before he rolls that shoulder and moves to dismount. The grey blows, flaring his nostrels to show the red deeper in but stands quietly enough when bid to do so. The stranger's movement and voice turns Justin's head to study Nathaniel, "No, I'm fine. Plenty of practice exercise is all it requires." Now afoot, he looks to the groom and motions the boy to come and get his shield from the grass. His own grey eyes return to Nathaniel who picked up the lance, "I believe I do not know you. Did you come then with the Nayland group or are you from the Roost?"

Nathaniel watches while the groom crosses the green to retrieve the shield, and hefts the lance to suggest that the boy might think about taking that, too. Then he looks to the noble and bows. "I am recently from Stonebridge, Lord. But I serve the Roost."

The boy, who is old enough in his teens to be a young man in his own right, awkwardly takes the lance as well, though clearly he has no idea how to carry it. He does his best not to drag it through the grass and put it where there are two others set upright to lean against a short fence for just such purpose at one end of the green.

Justin wipes sweat from his brow, then strips off his leather gloves, "Are you then? And have you a name and position?" Humor faintly colors his tone, his own eyes light with a flicker of mischief, "You came forward quickly enough to pick up my lance. Are you squire to someone?"

Nathaniel yields the lance to the groom. "I am Nathaniel Corbitt, Ser," he introduces himself with another bow. "I am a simple courier." He glances to where the lance fell, and explains. "If your gelding bolted for some reason, a foot might have found the lance. A dropped lance poses a hazard to horse and rider."

There's a glance to where he had tossed the lance, and to his horse before he shrugs, "Not particularly, I wasn't concerned for it. He's not a flighty animal." Justin tucks his gloves neatly into his sword belt, "Courier Nathaniel, you nontheless have my thanks for seeing to it's safe keeping. I am Lord Justin Terrick." Reins in hand, Justin studies Nathaniel, "So what are you good at besides, I assume, riding? I like to know the men who serve my father and what use they might be."

Nathaniel bows once more, and when his head lifts again, he focuses keenly on the dismounted lord. "Lord Ser," he answers. "I am honored. As I said, I come from Stonebridge. I have carried messages throughout the region, often more than a day's ride. I am fair with a bow for hunting, and at fishing. As my lord can guess, such business can be dangerous. So I have learned to defend myself by hand when necessary." He pauses, nods, and waits for further questions that the lord might have.

Justin shifts his jaw but doesn't allow himself a grimace with Nathaniel's address. But he corrects the man, "I'm … not knighted. Lord will due." Bah! That annoys him. Forcing something of a smile, Justin looks to the tower, then back to Nathaniel, "Very well. I'm certain we'll see what use you are. Plenty of work in the town if you find yourself idle between assignments. Everyone's lending a hand with the rebuilding. Food and drink is rationed carefully. Though game is thinning, whatever meat you can bring in will be much appreciated." Justin scrapes a hand through his hair, the sweat of his brow drying, "I've things to attend to myself. Good day to you." He turns to motion for the groom to take the lances back up to the tower as he starts to lead his horse back.

Nathaniel bows in conclusion and answers, "With the rains, grass will grow and might lure game into the open, lord. I'll do my part, then. Good day to you!"