Page 511: Leader of the Pack
Leader of the Pack
Summary: The rescue party starts to gather. Lord Bolland cameos and an unorthodox choice is made regarding who will lead the mission.
Date: 17/Dec/2012
Related Logs: Missing children saga
Darek Perrin Leon Martyn Mortimer Jocelyn Bolland Erik Ozric Alric Arabella 
Temporary Camp, Terrick/Ashwood borders
A small camp has been set up, though it lacks all means of tents. There are places to tie up horses and variety of seating options about, making it seem more like a picnic. However, there is an abundance of guards keeping watch.
Sun Dec 16, 289

To most, it is just another Summer's day. The sun rides high in the perfectly topaz skies, and there are little puffs of clouds here and there that take on strange resemblances of rabbits, spilled milk, and something that might be a dragon head. There is a calm, warm breeze that ruffles its way through the grasses and the short, narrow trees that make up the outer edge of the northern woods. The scene looks more like a picnic than a forward camp with stretches of grass flattened to allow barrel seats and various trunks to be unloaded. Horses have been tied to a makeshift railing that is supported across a pair of beer kegs. There are plenty of guards to be seen as well, and a vast quantity of them wear the Terrick gold and purples with a spattering of Ashwoods and Erenfords here and there.

Darek is dirty, tired, and grimly exuberant. His hair is tied back from his face with a strip of black cloth, and despite his armor, his helmet is nowhere in evidence. He's gotten a waterskin from somewhere, and after the first slosh went over his luxurious waves of brown hair, sending them clinging to his head and neck. The second went down his throat, and then he hands the waterskin off to Mortimer, rubbing at his face with his hands to wipe away leftover water and the dirt it's loosened beneath. Sure, it puts streaks on his face, but it also removes some of the dirt.

Striding into the camp, his horse already had been taken by his squire, Perrin makes his way as if he owned the place. So out numbered, so many Terricks, Ashwoods and Erenfords that the single Haigh clearly stands out. But this is a time to hold one's head high, not to let it fall to be subservient. He pauses, hands on his hips as he looks about, then turns. Obviously he must be looking for someone or some ones in particular.

Following in Ser Perrin's wake is a virtual stranger, young Leon Undyl, who got roped into action only a while ago but received explanations from Perrin along the way what was happening.

Moving not too far after Perrin, Martyn has left his horse in the care of his own squire now. Looking around at the camp here, studying it a bit carefully, he nods at something somebody said. Keeping quiet for the moment as he looks around, both at Perrin and Leon for the moment, before his gaze moves to study some of the other people around.

Still armed and armoured with the equipment borrowed from the Roost armoury, Mortimer accepts the waterskin from Darek and takes a small sip. Enough to wash around the inside of his mouth and spit out before then taking a proper drink and passing it back. "I'm not sure how many of them are archers," he notes to the squire, "but I figure we'll need more than just your bow. There's also talk of going over the top of the waterfall on ropes, to get into the cave by surprise. If the Seven are kind the wind will be with us, or those wolves will mark our approach long before." It seems he's so far oblivious of the arrival of Perrin and his little entourage, concentrating more on resting and taking the weight off his feet while he has the chance.

Soon approaching, Jocelyn walks with her maid, her head bent in conversation with her and her two guards dressed in Stonebridge colors walks behind them. Nodding her head, the Nayland woman lifts her head as they approach those that were gathered on the road, looking from face to face.

Darek blinks at the talk of going over the waterfall on ropes, opening his mouth, closing it, then opening it again despite his better judgment, "Just how many of the knights've had to climb something since they got their spurs, Master Trevelyan?" He looks around the boom-camp, reaching up to run his fingers through his now-wet hair, "Seven Above… they're all going to want to wear their cursed armor, aren't they?" He takes the waterskin back, taking a more measured sip this time, "I'm happy to sit around and shoot shit for a while," he pats the bow slung across his shoulders, "But you or me should go in with the knights, make sure Mott and Inna and those two boys from Heronhurst are okay. They're all gonna just be worried about the little Lady."

There is a thundering sound of approaching hooves, and breaking around the bend of the road comes none other that Ser Bolland himself and a handful of outriders. He looks to have been coming from the Ashwood lands, perhaps meeting with Lord Aleister himself. He wears half-maile and leathers instead of his more impressive collection of plates. There is a chance he may just be riding through, but the new Eagle Lord does slow his massive steed down to a trot as he enters the simple encampment. The gelding is soon just walking in a slow, relaxed pace, and then stops entirely before Mortimer and Darek. The Lord dismounts.

Ahh, there she is. Perrin has spotted Jocelyn and goes to intercept her as she comes to the camp. Coming in front of her, his voice barely above a whisper "With all the liveries here and I am the only Haigh I feel like a sore thumb sticking out." He tells her before asking as he looks down at himself "Is everything right? It's hard to see it all and with Kylin at the horse you get to be my squire." A grin and a wink follows.
He hears the words spoken by Darek who gets a glance, his jaw tightening a bit but he once more turns to Jocelyn. His words come a bit louder "He doesn't know me very well, does he?"
At the arrival of still more horses and men he looks over to who has come into the camp. The livery plain to catch as he does.

Leon dismounts as well and finds somewhere he can tie his horse to, before he rejoins the main group to find out who's who and what's going on in the first place. For now he remains silent, waiting for instructions.

Now there's a dilemma. Mortimer was definitely of the opinion that entering the cave from above was very much a young man's game, but with Darek's skills with a bow.. Any further thoughts though are cut off swiftly as Lord Bollard himself arrives and he scrambles to his feet to offer the correct obediences. Well, scramble might be a little bit of an exaggeration, but the spear is certainly used for leverage. "M'Lord," he offers respectfully, bowing as he does so.

Reaching out to correct some part of his own equipment, Martyn pauses as he sees the group of people arriving. Raising his eyes a bit as he sees it's Lord Bolland arriving. "Interesting…" he offers, a bit quietly, to whoever may overhear it, before he makes his way further in that direction now, a bit slowly.

The thunder of approaching hooves draws Darek up too, especially since they come from the north. His brows lift, and then fall a bit as he recognizes the heraldry. The young man knuckles his brow, "Milord Terrick." The young man starts to tuck his thumbs behind that outrageously large belt-buckle of his, then realizes he still has the waterskin in hand. There's a moment's hesitation, and then the youth offers said skin out to said Lord of Terrick's Roost.

"I cannot tarry here long," Bolland announces as hands the reigns of his horse to his squire — a boy about Darek's age, and equally on the brink of knighthood. He glances around at the other nobles and retainers present, but his gaze focuses on Mortimer — he's after all the one whose name has been on all the reports. His gaze falls on the waterskin, but he holds up a hand to silently gesture that he is not parched. "I require an update before I'm to send Ravens along to Lords Erenford and Haigh." In other words, the Eagle Lord has limited patience today. "I heard a cave was found." And now he glances over toward the Mallister and Haigh knight, and his gaze even passes over vaguely over on Jocelyn.

As Perrin approaches, Jocelyn turns up her face to him and smiles keeping her tone lowered to match his own. "Now you may very well know how I feel at certain occasions. A Nayland approaches a group, and it feels much like that. Do not worry, the feeling subsides quickly after a while." A turn of her head moves from side to side to scan the area, the question drawing her attention back. "Yes, everything is fine. I have a feeling it is going to be a good day."
Seeing the tension in Perrins face, her eyes travel to Darek, perhaps having missed some comment that passed. "I do not think many of them will claim to many here well, My Lord. In larger groups such as this with important moments to come, comments come and go in passing without thought."
Looking toward Leon as he starts to look, there is a moment of hesitation before she speaks up, "I know you from somewhere, do I not? I hardly forget a face, but your name fails me." Before she can get her answer though, the thunderous hooves are heard and she steps back instinctively to get out of the way, Seeing the unknown man, looking to see who greets him and hears the name Terrick. "Oh." going silent a she watches what takes place before her.

Mortimer starts to reach for a map, then realises that his is deep within the saddelbag of his borrowed horse. Instead, a brief nod is given in confirmation before he explains. "Aye m'Lord. Squire Boldt here," he motions briefly to Darek, "spotted something odd about a waterfall upsteam from where the body was found. We got close enough to figure it for a cave behind the water, but the place was guarded and there was sign of the wolves being present so we couldn't stick around too long." He glances to Darek again then, incase the younger man has anything he wants to add to the overview.

Once Jocelyn is done he gives her a wink as well as a softly said "Always" before turning and striding over to where Lord Bolland has come to a stop. Once he is right in the thick of things he bows his head respectfully "My Lord, Ser Perrin Haigh, second son of Leslyn Haigh," he says as a way of introduction. "I would like to commend Deputy Mortimer and Master Darek for their tireless efforts. Both men have brought honor to their house and deeds I shall be reporting back to my father."

Leon bows to Jocelyn and smiles faintly. "I for one have not forgotten you, Lady Jocelyn.", he says softly, "You offered kindness and support in the moment of my greatest distress. Back in Stonebridge.", he tries to jog her memory a little, "I am Ser Leon Undyl, I had just returned from Kings Landing."

Well hell. Now Darek's stuck standing in front of some foreign lord with a waterskin in his hand. Oh well. He pops the cap back into it, then slings it over one shoulder, where it bumps up against his sheathed blade. He nods at Mortimer's explanation, "It's not much of a cave, Milord. It was near dark when we saw it, and we couldn't get too close, but I wouldn't be surprised if a grown man had to crawl to get in. If it's a bear's den or something, it could open up again after the entrance, could be room for the five children, Milord." Perrin's approach causes the youth to knuckle his forehead again, the motion letting his eyes cast sideways, where they spot the orange and green of Nayland livery on Jocelyn's guards. His back stiffens, and his right hand twitches, as if it were going to go for the sword at his hip, but he restrains himself, turning back to the Lord of the Roost.

The news of a cave being found was related to Erik by the Fenster Lord, but details have yet to be given, at least until now. Lingering at the edges of the group, the Jast Knight doesn't appear to be interested in getting into the middle of the meeting, instead seeming to be more restless in wanting to depart with men to hunt down these wolves and bandits. Eyes do go to Lord Bolland who arrived for an update, then to the commoners that are being addressed and praised, a smirk appearing on Erik with a slight shake of his head.

As he spots the nod from Bolland, Martyn offers a polite nod in return now, "Lord Terrick." A quiet greeting, before he looks back to the others for a few moments, listening a bit thoughtfully as one hand goes to move through his short beard.

"How many have been enlisted for the assault?" Bolland asks — or demands, depending on how one takes his snipped tone. He glances back toward the Haigh and Mallister. "I assume you two are going in." He locks his gaze on Leon. "How about you, boy?" Then he looks toward Perrin. "As you should," he says to Perrin. Then he looks back toward Darek, and the bearded line of his jaw flexes. "Five, now is it?" Bolland rubs at his brow briefly before he nods. "I'm sure I don't have to say this," but he's going to say it anyway, "if they know you are coming, there will be five dead bodies in that cave and not a villain to be found."

Perrin's arrival into his line of sight gets a nod from Mortimer and a respectful "m'Lord." It's fair to say that there might have been more were Lord Bolland not right there in front of him, such is life. "We're not short on volunteers m'Lord," he answers quickly, although even the briefest of glances round the camp would confirm that easily enough. "Too many though and we risk being heard or seen," or smelt, "before we're there." He offers Darek a quick glance before it's back to his lord, "I was thinking a dozen maybe? We saw six guards, then there's the wolves and their lady, and this hunter fellow."

With a hint of a smile "Nothing on this world could stop me from going in My Lord," Perrin says with deep conviction. He looks to Martyn for his response, not wanting to speak for the man but seems to allredy know what his words will be as well. When he turns back his eyes meet those of Lord Bolland directly "Deputy Mortimer has suggested an assault with ropes from above as other's draw the guards at the mouth away. Since he has seen this cave first hand I defer to his judgement." He turns and listens to Mortimer speak, but that is only for a moment or two before he once more turns his attention back to the Terrick Lord.

Somewhere among the crowd is Alric as well. Moving to stick close to the Haighs and those few of the Fensters that are there. Glancing to the Jast knight as well, for whatever reason. Moving a bit closer to PErrin but not speaking.

"But of course." Jocelyn replies to Perrins comment of Always. Staring after him as he leaves her sides and takes a good look at the men gathered around the Lord Terrick, it gave her an opportunity to really size him up from where she stood. Catching a glimpse of Darek as he stares back at her and her guards, her smile falling and her eyes set on his face evenly until he turns his attention away from them. Only spoiling her mood a little, she turns back to Leon and blinks. "Right! Ser Undyl. My Apologies, I am just terrible at names. Its good to see you, I hope you found your family?" The Lord Terrick's commanding voice breaks through and sees that he's spoken to Leon. "Oh, you best be off to him, he's keyed you in…"

Leon smiles at Jocelyn when she finally remembers him and nods. "I did find my sister Samphire indeed.", he explains, then even without her nudging him, he turns to the man who seems to be in charge. At hearing himself addressed as 'boy' Leon bristles a little bit but tries not to show it as he bows to Lord Bolland. "I offered my services as soon as I heard that there was something was amiss. Anything in my power I can do, My lord, I will be happy to do."

"Well, someone needs to keep him," a gesture towards Perrin, "from getting himself killed or something, my lord. So yes, I will be going with him." There's a bit of a grin from Martyn as he says that, although it's only briefly. Nodding a bit at the rest of what's being said now.

Darek allows Mortimer to respond to his Lord, shifting his attention instead to Perrin and holding up one hand about at the level of his throat, "Milord… the outcropping the cave's in is like… this tall. Unless you're wearing heavy armor, it shouldn't be an issue to just jump down." Mortimer's half-question to him draws a shrug, "Fewer'd be better, I think, Master Trevelyan, but if we've got to take a dozen, we've got to take 'em. But as Milord Terrick says, we've got to move fast, whatever we do. So it'll depend on which way the wind's from. We want to be downwind of the cave when we approach."

Arriving closely with Erik Jast and Alric Fenster is the youngest of the Fenster siblings. Arabella is here to offer her services with Chiurgeonry, should it be needed. She'll of course remain back at the camp though, not wanting to add a distraction to the search party. As she hangs back slightly, she looks between each face of those present, hesitating only three times on three different faces. First is Alric, her brother, second is Perrin her friend and last is Erik, her favored dance partner. Noting his restlessness, she will offer him a comforting smile, if he happens to look her way. Though listening to Bolland speak, she glances at him now and then.

"And we're genuinely concerned about this… Weeping Woman?" Bolland says with a small snort, though he does concede with a nod. "A dozen then, and make sure everyone is dressed in leathers or half-mail. We aren't fucking Reach knights. I don't want to see a pretty one amongst you lot." The Terrick Lord seems genuinely agitated. Then again, letters have been coming in almost daily from Broadmoor, Heronhurst, Seagard — a courier from Riverrun was even seen dropping off a letter. Had it not been for the belated arrival of the Naylands, Bolland might have started to suspect their involvement. But the Harpies have shown up. "When will you ride out?" He asks the group at large — or at least the men. Jocelyn might as well be a pretty tree in a dress amongst the knights, squires, and men-at-arms.

The watchful glance being given by Alric to the Jast Knight may be caused by the blue ribbon that is tied around Erik's sword arm, most likely done so between the ride from the Roost to the camp here. His attention is focused on the men gathered around Lord Bolland, another smirk appearing as the weeping woman is mentioned. Erik cannot help but finally voice his words, a tad touched with arrogance, "Only /some/ are worried about the Weeping Woman, and other fairy tale stories, Lord Terrick. Some are more grounded to reality. We will make sure that these bandits are not allowed to escape, punished accordingly, and their tamed mutts put down. Of course, the longer we tarry here, the longer the lady must wait for rescue." There is a pause before the Jast Knight adds, just to show that he isn't entirely unconcerned of the others, "Along with the other children."

"In that I've seen her control the wolves, aye m'Lord," Mortimer answers to Bolland, without them though, that he's not going to remark upon. As for the time of departure, thats easy, well, easy in a vague sense anyway, "as soon as we're ready m'Lord." Although exactly what defines ready now there's a selection to be made and the possibility of needing to wait for some to doff a harness of plate he's not about to define right now.

Perrin turns as he listens to the words from the Lord and everyone else that speaks. But the words from Martyn gives him a chuckle and the man a wink. But his eyes still search till they alight on Leon. "Ser, if I may ask, would you ride back to the Inn and tell my men where I am at and they are to report here as fast as possible?" He turns back to the others "I have three knights that all can shoot a bow and both have tracking experience, I will give them to you Deputy, so use as you see fit." His breath catches as he hears Erik speak. For he himself has seen the Imp in the tree and knows that they are not just bandits. But he says nothing of this at this time.

The Highfield Sheriff's verbal jab at Darek tightens the squire's jaw, and he shifts his shoulders, looking down as he bites down to keep from snapping back. When he lifts his head again, one hand brushing back his wet hair, his features are composed, even if frustration and perhaps a bit of anger burn in his dark eyes. "We won't be riding, Milord. Horses can't be trusted to keep quiet, and they cursed well can't go through the woods here-abouts. But I'm ready to go as soon as everyone else is chosen." By his words — and rather stubborn tone — it's clear that the squire isn't going to be left back at camp.

Bolland nods in sharp agreement with the Jast Knight before he gestures for his squire to return his horse's reins. "I want their heads to be delivered," he informs the group, though he looks at Mortimer. "We're not interrogating these shits. I want them dead." And so does every other House in the Cape. He pulls himself into his saddle once more. He looks down toward Darek, and offers the boy a nod. "Smart boy," he says, which is perhaps the best compliment someone can get from Bolland — though adding a 'fuck' between smart and boy would have been even more dazzling. "May the Warrior be swift and the Mother protect." Then he spurs his horse along to continue onward to the Roost. And that is that.

Like a pretty tree, Jocelyn's hair moves with the breeze in the area, lifting a hand up, she takes her hand up and swirls the long locks of her hair and brings it forward to fall over her shoulder. Her head tilted to the side she looks onto the gathered group around the Terrick Lord, his commanding voice is not something that is uncommon to the Nayland and so she feels perfectly comfortable standing in the midst of it. To not longer distract Leon from his task and instructions that are being discussed she remains silent. Only turn her gaze from Terrick Lord when new ones arrive and move and take her attention away.

Leon nos to Perrin. "Yes, Ser, of course." Leon bows deeply to Perrin and to Lord Bollard, then offers a warm smile to Jocelyn before he heads back to his mount and rides off into the sunset.

As he hears Perrin's chuckle, Martyn offers a bit of a grin as well. Looking between the others for a few moments. "Probably a good thing to be prepared for both possibilities," he remarks, a bit thoughtfully, before he nods to the part about wanting them dead. Looking to where Bolland rides off to, he watches the man leave, not saying anything for the moment.

As the Lord leaves, Perrin also turns and grins at Martyn "Not going to let me do something stupid eh?" As for killing them all, Perrin has had only one thought when he caught them and that was to do just that. Directions from the Terrick Lord or not. With a jerk of his head he motions Martyn to follow the short distance to where Jocelyn still stands. "Well, that was interesting," he says to the Nayland Lady.

Mortimer nods once to Lord Bolland's instructions to indicate he understands, although anything he might have said is cut off as the man departs. He would sit down again, but since his Lord seems to have attracted others to the vicinity he remains on his feet and turns to Perrin a moment. "Thank you m'Lord, I am sure we can find use for them."

Darek tosses his hair a bit at the compliment from the Lord Terrick, then knuckles his brow once more and steps back out of the way. Looking over to Mortimer, he notes, sotto voce, "So… now who's in charge? I'm pretty sure it ain't you or me." And the youth looks about to see which of the nobles is going to try to snatch up the reins of command now that Bolland has departed.

Looking to her side, Leon disappears to do the bidding of the Terrick and then the Terrick is off. Leaving the Nayland standing alone with her guards and maid. Hands clasped before her she watches as the men go off to do tasks and prepare. Looking toward Perrin and Martyn as they approach her, "The Lord Terrick has a very commanding voice, does he not? Demands respect. Hard not to appreciate a man like that.", but yes, she nods, "It was interesting. That is for certain."

The tensions around are understood by the youngest Fenster, Arabella, it is indeed dire circumstances. As she watches Bolland depart, she offers a quick curtsy, though figures she was basically invisible to him, so she doesn't really linger there. Turning to look back at her brother then Erik, she finally notices the blue ribbon and bites her bottom lip to keep from smiling too widely in this somber moment.
At the question of who is in charge, it's in her to suggest Erik, since he had been working on it, though then Mortimer comes to mind as well. Though if it is truly Ashwood lands, then would it not fall to the Sheriff of Highfield? Still, she says nothing, like a good little lady, just lingers to help when asked.

Martyn offers another bit of a grin to Perrin. "Something like that. Would probably anger your father if I'd let you do something stupid here, right?" A brief pause, before he moves over in the direction Perrin suggested, nodding a little bit. "He seems a sound military man," he offers after a few moments of pause.

Erik doesn't join in on the conversation on who is going to be in charge of the merry band of men that will be venturing forth, though there will no doubt be strong objections of some common born was put forth as a suggestion. For the time being, the Jast Knight turns to head back to his secured horse, most likely to check over his kit and to decide what to bring with him and what to leave behind. Since the party number will be limited, Erik will be leaving his young Squire behind.

When Perrin hears the question posed by Darek he turns with a smile, thumbs hooked in the wide belt that goes about him. "And who would you suggest, Master Darek? For if a problem is brought up there should be suggestions offered, no?" His gaze lingers for the time it will take before an answer is given.

Alric has been keeping silent throughout with a few glances around. Looking to his sister as he spots what she is doing, rolling his eyes a bit as he moves towards her. Having done most of his preparations while listening, so now he has a moment perhaps. Moving over to the young Bella. "Are you alright?" Glancing to Perrin as well, and those in his company. As does he look to Erik.

With the other Terrick men, Ser Ozric doesn't really stand out. Seeing how he is dressed down into leathers as opposed to armor that could make more noise than needed. Leather patch secured, the knight makes his way over to where the others are gathered. Securing his sword in his belt, while his Squire follows behind, with the long crow's beak hammer held. There's a brief glance given towards Perrin, and then back towards Darek.
"What is the problem?" comes the knight's accented voice. Clearly the Lord Knight, is a little intrigued.

"A problem among men, who is in charge." Jocelyn comments to no on in particular, as the conversation starts. Or who's stick is bigger. There was little she could say about that, and so she stands silent again. Looking between the men when another knight speaks up from the shadows, turning her head to look toward the unknown knight.

Darek shrugs his shoulders at Perrin's question to him, "I'd say Master Trevelyan, Milord." And he points over toward Mortimer, "He gathered everyone together early, and he's been organizing patrols." There's a bit of challenge to the squire's very common accent, given that he's suggesting giving another commoner command over several very noble knights.

The issue of being the person in charge gets a definitive eye roll. "Honestly, who cares as long as the kids are rescued?" With a sudden start, Bella realizes she spoke that aloud. Oops. A quick guilty grin is given and she goes back to looking at her brother, deciding he was ultimately more interesting than her embarrassment for speaking out of turn. "I am doing fine, just.. I hope everything turns out okay." Again her eyes drift to the Jast Knight, but this time the action is brief before she looks over at Jocelyn as she speaks about the men in charge.

"Might I suggest." Ozric begins, as one hand raises from his belt. "That deputy Mortimer be in charge? I know he is no noble man, but common as shit from a dog." Ozric there turns his gaze towards Mortimer and Darek, "But I would argue he is the most knowledgeable in this case, and has handled it with extreme responsibility." And there he falls silent, a smile passed towards Darek. "It seems the squire and I concur." And so it seems that there is some weight behind Mortimer leading-at least where the Terrick heir is concerned. "I am sure, gentlemen we can sheathe our egos for one day." And with that he looks back towards Mortimer. "Master Treveylan, you have my confidence."

He doesn't add anything to the part about who it is that should be in charge. Looking over to Jocelyn and offering her a bit of a smile at her words, before the Mallister knight goes silent again for a few moments. Looking over at Ozric for a few moments, he offers the man a bit a nod, before Darek's words makes him pause a little bit. "Might not be the worst idea," he offers after a few moments of pause now. "After all, he knows the area, and has proven himself as a level-headed man," the Mallister offers after a few more moments of pause, before he nods a little bit at Ozric's words. "And mine, Master Trevelyan," he offers to Mortimer, with a bit of a nod.

Mortimer glances towards Darek as he states the question, then turns to look round the nobles as they either reply or not. Ozric's arrival is a godsend though and he motions towards the approaching knight. "We're on Terrick land, I'd say the Young Lord," he offers to Darek, although he's not keeping his voice down to exclude others from hearing. The young lad gets a definite look as his own name is thrown in before he nods briefly at Bella's comment. With Ozric and Martyn pilling in as well he starts to look faintly uncomfortable.

Perrin fights hard to keep the laughter caused by Jocelyn from coming forth. But the mirth is plain for anyone to see on his face. With a shrug of his shoulders "Fine," he says to the squire. "He has done a great job so far, he knows the lands, he knows the location." Again there comes a shrug of his shoulders as it matters little to him. He starts to turn to Jocelyn, pauses, then shrugs again.
He looks to Ozric and nods "I couldn't agree more, Ser. The main thing is to have the right man in charge, I also say that should be the Deputy." There, that is settled, at least in Perrin's mind. So it's to Jocelyn he turns to.
"It won't be long now, My Lady. I am glad you are here." He looks to the ribbon that is tied around Erik's arm "May I ask something of you, a token of yours perhaps?"

Alric smiles a little and nods to his sister's words. As for who is in charge, he shrugs. "The one most capable. It seems to me that it has been master Trevelyan." Despite the fact that he can be arrogant, he does agree that a commoner should lead. Then he goes back to his sister. "It's fine. I promise." Seeing her glance and he just has a weak smile for her at that.

For the time being, Erik remains silent, though in his mind he believes that quite a few have either forgotten their teachings when they were nobles. It is… unheard of to put a commoner in charge, though since this is Terrick Lands, he has to defer to Lord Ozric's decision. The decision though, makes him think even less of the Roostians, something that will most obviously be reported to Lord Aleister when this incident is finally done with and behind them. When Perrin approaches through, the Jast Knight inclines his head to the other man before glancing down at the ribbon on his arm, "It is, a favor gifted by a kind lady. One who was worried about our well being when we venture forth to the rescue."

Darek looks distinctly surprised as several nobles speak up in support of Mortimer taking over too, and he has to stifle a chuckle, leaning over to nudge the older commoner with one elbow, "So. What's the first step, boss? Besides figuring out who else is going." And determining what way the wind is blowing as they approach the site, of course.

Ozric glances over towards Erik, and keeps his lone eye on the Jast knight for the moment being, shifting his weight, there is a nod back towards his squire as a few hushed words are passed between the two. A glance is spared back towards Erik's arm and with a clearing of throat-the one eyed knight speaks up. "You might wish to tuck that elsewhere. It would not do to have it get snagged and torn, while you gallantly ride." The words are a bit dry, before he is looking back to his men. He'll allow the others to meet and ready.
"Master Trevelyan, a brief word.." Ozric comments over his shoulder, before he is turning to take the two handed affair from his young squire.

The agreement was coming to a head it seemed, and it was settling on shoulders of the Deputy. There is a bit of surprise that registeres on the young Naylands face when the commoner is named as the best lead. The unknown Knight being revealed as Mortimer mentions a Young Terrick. Ah… another Terrick. He's given another look over and then to each that agree with the suggestion of the Deputy. Finally her gaze settles on Erik to see his reaction to what is transpiring, and its then that her lips turn at the corners and come humor is lighting Jocelyn features. Casting her eyes downward and biting her lower lip. Only looking up when Perrin asks her for a Token. Taken back, she blinks at him. "You may." she says easily and then looks to her maid then down at her person. Its then that she lifts her hands up and unclasps the pendant that is hanging from around her neck. Its lowered into her hand and its held by its clasp as she offers it to Perrin. "For you, My Lord. Its a great deal important to me. Ensure that I get it back on your safe return."

It seems that, for perhaps the first time since the Sheriff of Highfield finally joined the search, he and Mortimer are in agreement. Expression deadly serious Mortimer looks to Ozric at the exclusion of all the others. "M'Lord," starts purposefully, about to voice his objections to the decision, starting with the fact that while he has plenty of battlefield experience, none of it is in actually leading. The summons though halts his words and instead he offers the others a brief nod in departure before he starts of following the Young Lord.

Alric looks to Ozric at his words to Erik, although not saying anything. Moving just a little to make last arrangements. Then he looks to his sister. again and leans in to whisper to her.

"I see," Perrin says to Erik before he grins and looks to Arabella. "You know you will have to return it so I would put it in a safe place, Ser."
As Jocelyn goes to remove her necklace he is about to protest such a gift. But when she holds it out to her he studies it for a time as if it would bite or something. At last he reaches out and takes it. "My Lady honors me greatly. For such a token is not given lightly. I shall return it to you when we come back." He reaches under his brigandine and puts it into a pocket there in. When his hand comes back out he pats over it, right over the right side of his chest. "My thanks, My Lady." And so he bows to her as well.

Turning there, the lord reaches over with his free hand. A clasp to the commoner's shoulder as he draws the other man in close. His head brought in close so that words would not pass any further than the two men. After what brief words are shared, he merely pats the man's shoulder and steps further away to finish seeing to his horse. Everything must be ready, right?
Ozric whispers: Do not worry, Mortimer. I have seen you lead searches and seen you hunt down criminals. Since the beginning of this search, you have beat the bounds. This is the same thing here. Though instead of sailors, you have competent soldiers and knights. They know how to do their job and will do it. Simply, tell us where you need us, and what you expect. Lord Perrin, is a good knight- as is Ser Mallister and myself. Have faith. You can do this.

Martyn looks a bit thoughtful now as he looks around at the others present. Looking around for a few moments now, expression a bit thoughtful as he steps away from the others. For those that might have fought alongside him before, it seems to be some routines he's usually going through before any kind of combat.

As the commoner is voted to lead, one brief thought races through her head. At least there was someone who would get the brunt of the attack before the noblemen right? So at least the others would have advance warning? Though Bella did understand how Erik must feel and is quite surprised as Alric agrees. Of course she had not met the man in question formally, so she just shrugs to her brother. "If you think so." His weak smile is noted, though she winks in return, somewhat playfully. "You worry far too much, dear brother. I assure you, there is nothing of concern." Yet. Right? Until Erik mentions the favor and Bella blushes, looking at her ribbon on his arm. As everyone seems to be gathering to head out, she looks to Perrin as he accepts a favor from Jocelyn. Giving them both an approving smile. "Gods speed.." she whispers almost to herself, smiling at the whispering from her brother. "I am counting on that very thing, Alric. Please, bring the children home."

A momentary glance is given to Ozric by the Jast Knight, then the gaze is turned away without response, almost as if Erik did not hear what Ozric said or did not care much for the one-eyed knight's words. His attention returns to the Haigh Knight and a smirk appears, shaking his head, "I would not worry too much, Ser. I am sure the Lady knows we are not riding out to tourney or parade. If it is indeed damaged after this, I will give her something in return that will do her honor and show my thanks for her kindness." Erik then looks towards Jocelyn and her gift for Perrin, a chuckle released, "The Lady Nayland is certainly a most kind lady as well. It appears that we both have to come back from this, as we have tasks that await us, Ser."

Mortimer doesn't seemed inclined to let Ozric escape without a response as he turns and keeps step with the Young Lord as he walks towards the horses. His voice is kept low, but his hands are animated enough to indicate that whatever he's saying, he wants to ensure is taken seriously.
Mortimer whispers, faintly exasperatedly "M'Lord. I was a soldier a long time but never in command. I've never led troops and I've never had to even think about what Knights were doing. Thats what Lord and Knights do m'Lord, not retired houseguards. You want to to hold a line together in face of a charge, no problem, but leading that lot? This is Terrick land m;'Lord and command of the operation should go to any militarily trained Terrick. That's you m'Lord. Not me."

Alric nods, "Perhaps, dear sister. But rather too much than too little." Shifting and moving a bit. Giving a nod to Perrin and Erik as well. But he seems to be wanting to be silent or the time being.

Jocelyn stares in expectation at Perrin as he seems to pause and debate about the necklace, her eyebrows raise and a touch of humor when he looks about to protest. But finally he takes it from her and she inclines her head, "You're very welcome, My Lord. Now, be safe." A glance is given as arrangements seems to be pulling together for the departure. "I'll see to your sister." she tells Perrin, only to be distracted by the Jast Knight. Turning her head toward him, she stares at him from his compliment, her smile falling and she inclines her head to his compliment. "Kind of you to say, Ser Erik, I do believe you give me too much credit. I do hope the safe return. For you both."

Darek watches the nobles gather in Mortimer, grimacing slightly as he turns aside, unslinging his purloined waterskin and tossing it over to a lingering, younger squire. He pats down his ringmail, checking his weapons and then meandering off a short distance toward the north, apparently ready and waiting for whenever the others are prepared.

The last to arrive though at least there is some presence of Groves throughout this gathering of hunters. Nikolus, not heir, nor any man of significant importance, is standing in place of his cousin Stafford. Perhaps a poor substitute who lacked skills of tracking, warfare, and all around usefulness for today. Still he arrives, mounted and having no intention of entertaining those in attendance with his awkward dismount, requiring aid due to a leg injury. He mocks some airy salute, "Give it hell." Or them.

A smile is given to Jocelyn before Perrin looks to Erik "We shall return, now I must see to…" he looks about and sees that Martyn has moved off a bit. Brows furrow a little before he turns back Jocelyn. "Safe as I can be, My Lady. And thank you for seeing to her. I know she must be worried about Hafwen. Tell her that I shall return with her shortly and then she can be returned home where she should be at." That half smile of his comes after a deep breath, he turns and rests his hand on the hilt of his sword as he makes his way to where the Terricks have gathered.

There is a faint look over to Mortimer and there is a brief grin there before his last bit of words are given. And then he is nodding, as if to show the end of the matter. "Let us know, when we need to be in position, Master Trevelyan.." And then the Terrick Lord falls silent as he turns and looks back over towards Nikolus. A nod passed to him. "my Lord Groves, good to see you.." Ozric says before he turns back to finish fussing with his saddle.
Ozric whispers: Leading, is but delegating. As it is, I am delegating this to you. When we come to where they are, you tell us where you need our lines and merely give a signal for us to strike. We can lead the men with us well. And we will do our part. But in all, make sure we keep the heads

When Perrin leaves her side, Jocelyn steps back from the remaining group of men, allowing them to settle what is needed before they depart onward. Turning her maid she again is in lowered voices speaking with her, glancing up at the guards and then moving to their side to continue whatever conversation she was having.

Having made his way over to where Miramis are at the moment, Martyn takes a few moments to pat at the horse, even taking a brief moment to give the animal a bit of a hug as he prepares for what's to come now.

It would be fair to say that Mortimer does not look entirely satisfied with the outcome of his quiet, but animated, conversation with Ozric. Head down and running a hand through his hair it takes a moment for him to notice Perrin's proximity and glance back up towards the man. "I suppose we'd better get moving then m'Lord" he states simply, reaching to stick the helmet he's been carrying on his head.

A hand goes to rest on Mortimer's shoulder and Perrin leans in to speak softly to the man "You are in charge, hold your head up. You can do this else I wouldn't have gone along with it." He drops his hand and moves back a bit "As you command, Deputy." He gives a nod of his head and begins to move out.