|Summary:||Tyroan and Anathema discuss the situation in Stonebridge, and jobs for their sons.|
|Related Logs:||Letter of Resignation|
|Lord and Lady's Quarter's, Tordane Tower|
|The door opens to show the bed to the left, further from the entrance and the foot settled with a heavy locked chest with a few woven blankets draped over it. The carved posters of the bed hold wrappings of green cloth held by golden tassels, a heavy woolen blanket settled atop the stuffed mattress. On either side of the bed are removeable steps. A thick circular rug has faded over time and with foot traffic and takes up most of the wooden floor. A hearth at the corner of the room directly inward from the door is soot covered and crackling with embers. A heavy oak chest of drawers is fitted into a corner to hold the clothes and blankets of the Lord and Lady. Two chairs are set near the slitted double windows between the hearth and bed.|
|21 October, 289|
These days, the only time the Steward and his wife are free to catch up on the recent events around Stonebridge is after sunset. One of the household girls has already gone about lighting the candles and lamps to bask the chambers in a warm, yellowy glow. Anathema Nayland sits at the writing desk with a sleeping robe tied closed about her waist. Her dark hair is loose, spilling down her back in soft waves. She is rubbing her fingers over a handkerchief stained with dried blood. Rumor has it that the most recent gel sent to her from the Mire spontaneously started bleeding from her nose, and it was Anathema who provided her with the handkerchief; something about the way the blood gathered intrigued the woods-witch. While she waits for her husband to join her, she puzzles over the omens she sees there.
The pops of Tyroan Nayland's knuckles precede his entrance into the room, although that follows immediately there-after. He steps into the little suite of rooms, swings the door shut, and knuckles his back, twisting to and fro as he does, "Fucking books." He comes stumping into the room with the writing desk, "What did you to do the girl this time, Ana?" Amusement touches his voice, and a dry smirk spreads across his lips. "I know she's useless, but you don't have to bleed the use out of her."
Her attention does not lift from the bloodied handkerchief until he poses that question, and she smirks his way. "I don't even think I'll bother to learn this one's name. I think it's Ferran or something equally dismal." She gently folds the bit of stained cloth. "I was merely telling her that she should try to walk quieter. She clomps like an awful horse all around the hallways." She sighs now, leaning back into the chair. "How have the books offended you, My Husband?"
Tyroan moves over to his wife's side, resting one gnarled hand on her shoulder, "Ferrah." He has quite the memory, all things considered. "But you'll forget that willfully, I'm sure, Ana." Smiling again, he squeezes her shoulder lightly, "Just sitting over them. The table helps, but not as much as I'd like." Moving around to lean his hip against the writing table, he faces his wife, "Ser Bruce resigned. Suggested Ser Karel as Captain of the Guards. I'm going to talk to him about it. At least until Ren's ready." Although, if his son isn't ready at 27, when will he be?
"You need to find some willful young squire to read you the books," Anathema says with the quirk of her lips. Then she releases a small sigh at the news from Bruce. "I suppose that his loyalties to Rickart's issues were going to be a problem sooner or later. He was quite dedicated to Ryker and Rutger in the very least." She shrugs her shoulders a bit. "Will he be returning to the Mire then?" She pauses after asking that question as her dark brows quirk, looking up into his steel-colored eyes. "Perhaps you could give our other son something worthwhile to aspire to," she says, perhaps a touch dryly. "I'm sure that Ren is more than ready. How pleased his wife will be."
Tyroan waves off the first suggestion, "I don't want to listen to some fucking squire blather on all day." He shakes his head slightly, "He helped put some odd system in place with the Master at Arms in charge of the Captain of the Guard and both commanding the levies." Waving off that thought, he adds, "His wife's sick, back in…" he pauses a moment, then comes up with, "Blackwood lands. And Ren is a fighter, not a leader. He can learn that though." Harrumphing softly, he inquires, "You think Aeron'd be any good at that? I wouldn't put him in as Master of Hunt. That'd be a fucking insult for a noble son. What were you thinking, Ana?"
Anathema shakes her head, draping her forearms against the heavily carved arms of the chair. She casts a glance toward the dark windows, looking beyond them into the night. Then she shakes her head. "Such positions are knightly ones, we both know this, Ty." She sighs softly. "But he should be given some role in our household. His wife-to-be will give him some grounding here, as long as she doesn't run off to a Sept to avoid marriage." She smirks a bit with half-hearted amusement. "We should send something to the Roost, to Lady Anais. As I hear it, Lord Jacsen's body was delivered."
Tyroan nods his head slowly, "Would he see Master of Hunt as an insult?" The man rubs at his forehead with the heel of one hand, perhaps showing some of his frustration at not knowing his second son. "Because I haven't a fucking clue what else he could do in the household. He'd be shit as a Castellan, can't run the levies or the Guard, I suppose he could be Sheriff if the Stork doesn't want it anymore." The news from the Roost, however, draws him up from his slumping lean, "Shall we send some flowers?" Someone who didn't know him might think that he was actually concerned. Ana, undoubtedly, will be able to see the smirk hidden behind the question.
"Sheriff would be a suitable role. He will at least bring some Northern justice with him," Ana says, proudly. She rolls her head, neck popping quite delicately compared to her husband's noise-makers. She ends up with her head tilted all the way back on the back of the chair, throat fully exposed and her chin pointed at the ceiling. His smirking question draws a light chuckle on her lips. She tilts her head a bit to look at him. "I was more thinking of a letter of condolences. Though, if I could prune some of the roses…" Her lips curve with an impish quality.
Tyroan snorts softly, "You think he could take a head in one blow? I bet it'd take him three." Stepping forward, he reaches out to pat his wife's cheek lightly, then keep stepping to come around behind her, "Lean forward and I'll give your neck a rub." He pats lightly on her shoulders, waiting for her to lean forward before he can get his thumbs on the back of her neck. "Letter'd be a good idea. A few roses might be rubbing it in, but that's almost worth it." He hrms softly, "The Stork's done a good job. I don't want to send him packing without a good reason. I'm not trying to replace good men with my sons, and I don't fucking want it to look like I am."
The pat to her cheek draws a warm smile on her lips, and the witch does as he asks. "Thank you, Husband," she murmurs as she leans forward a bit, draping her head forward to give him access to the back of her neck. "He is no Stark, nor does he bear a blade such as Ice… but he would at least be fair and true." She breathes out a sigh as he starts to work at her muscles, and her eyes start to slump shut. "Perhaps just a letter then… the roses can stay." For now, her tone hints. Then she shrugs her shoulder a bit in regard to Rygar. "Let him be for now, but I would like to see our sons be given purpose." She frowns a bit. "Aeron will just flee North if he is not given a reason to stay. I won't have that happen again."
Tyroan brushes aside the long locks of hair, settling his hands on her shoulders and starting to work his thumbs down from the base of her skull. "If he runs, I'll have him brought back. He's a Nayland, Ana, and we need the whole fucking family to make this work." Rolling his thumbs slowly over the tight muscles of her neck, he notes, "I'll need your help writing the letter. I know I'm shit for writing anything but orders and records." Shifting one hand to pat her shoulder, then going back to rubbing, he adds, "I'll find him something. Besides being a brood stallion."
"I would have expected nothing less," Anathema says wryly. "You are terrible at letter-writing. Your wrethched mother even once commented that your letter-writing etiquette improved after you married me. Little did she know that I was writing them for you." The woods-witch offers a smile up toward him before her eyes ease shut once more, and she breathes out a sigh. "Please, it is all I—" And then she releases a soft groan as his thumb rocks over a knot of muscle where her shoulder and neck connect. "All I ask…"
Tyroan smirks, "It's the last compliment I can remember her giving me." The sound of achy pleasure causes him to settle in on that point, bringing both thumbs over to work on that particular knot. "Heh. Maybe I'll even ask him what he wants to do." Snorting softly, he offers up that little smirk of his, "Won't that just surprise the fuck out of him?"
"It will," Anathema half-groans as he continues to work at that knot of muscle, and it slowly begins to release. She rolls her eyes shut, breathing out a little sigh. "We have had this conversation before, Husband, but your second son may not be like Renholdt, but he is still your son. It would do you both some good to… connect… on something." She glances up at him briefly. "Do you still intend to take him out for a hunt?"
Tyroan eases up as the knot loosens, then merely lets his hands settle on her neck and shoulders. "I do. When I've time." He pats lightly on her shoulders, moving around to pull a chair up alongside her own, facing in the opposite direction. Slumping down into it, he shifts his hand over to rest on her forearm, "I don't know him. I haven't seen what he can do. And he's done fuck-all to impress me. But I'm sure he'll snap out of being a fucking whiner. I thought a pretty woman might've done it."
Anathema relaxes in her chair, almost slumping unladylike against the wood and cushions. She is quiet for a moment, though she smiles briefly under the weight of his larger hand against her forearm. "He is insulted we would dare marry him off so soon after his wife's death. I told him there would be a suitable time to mourn before he is even betrothed to Lady Sabriel." She tilts her head a bit. "She is rather gorgeous… young, golden haired, and the freckles are quite becoming." Says the woman who possesses none of those features. She is all kinds of dark, from hair to the olive of her skin. No, Anathema has found her son a new wife who is as fair as any Southron.
Tyroan arches an eyebrow at the description, "So nothing like the northern girl he married the first time." He grunts softly, frowning in thought as his gnarled fingers trace over the lines of her forearm, "Might be good. He won't get the wrong name in bed." The old goat chortles at that, "Now that'd be fucking embarrassing." There's a pause, and then he smirks, "Fucking hilarious though." I'd pay to see the reaction — and not just for the naked lady."
Anathema casts her husband an amused smirk. "This is why I end up hating our gooddaughters," she says dryly. "I would like to actually like this one." Though it is almost natural for Anathema to despise her children's spouses. Visenya almost burst into tears when Anathema started berating her husband, though she still blames the pregnancy emotions on that outburst. "Lady Sabriel would never find a better match than with Aeron, nor would he find one better than her. He will get use to the idea, I'm certain. He may even grow to be fond of her presence." His gentle touch draws her eyes closed.
Tyroan snorts softly, "None of them are Northern girls. No shit, Ana." The last words chortle softly, "Just like our goodson isn't a Northman, and whoever we marry Merida to won't be either." Letting his head loll back in his chair, he adds, "Arman's a good man, for a Goodbrook." That draws his dry smirk up again. "Just because none of us Rivermen are cold men with fucking beards the size of a mammoth's balls doesn't make us any less attractive." His smirk draws up even tighter, "Fact of the matter, I'd say it makes us more attractive. Even if you won't ever admit it."
Anathema laughs that warm, rich, rolling laugh; it is as welcoming as a bonfire on a Winter's night, some might say. She glances toward her husband with those smoldering dark eyes. "But Visenya has also been more of a Riverlander in her heart," she murmurs. She sweeps up to her feet now, the sleeping robe being gathered up just enough so she can turn and throw a leg over her husband's lap. She settles down against him slowly, resting her hands on his shoulders. "I did not know I needed to verbalize my attraction to your Riverland features, My Husband. Have you grown self-conscious in your old age?" And there's that flash of an impish smile.
Tyroan brings his hands around to rest on her waist, shifting just a little beneath her so that he can get a little more comfortable. "No. I know I'm more than my bald-ass head and my Nayland nose. Doesn't mean I don't like a little flattery now and then."But what you're saying is that you Northern girls are more discerning than Riverland girls?" Leaning forward to press a kiss to her collarbone, he straightens up again and grins, "Think carefully before you answer and call our daughters lightskirts…"
"My word, I wouldn't have to flatter a Northman husband," Anathema teases goodnaturedly. She tilts her head a bit as he kisses her collarbone, and she laughs softly at his warning. "Our daughters would never be actual lightskirts, though I'm starting to think that Visenya's goodfamily are going to make her soft." She draws her fingers across his balding head, rubbing against the tiny blades of hair on the back of his head. "Though, I do have very high standards. You're just lucky you met them, or imagine how miserable our marriage would be." She leans in closer, gracing the ghost of a kiss against his lips. "We were going to talk about the Roost. Shall I tell you what your estranged niece is up to?"
Tyroan shakes his head, "Nope. Just defrost him any time you wanted to get fucked." Nudging his temple against the side of her jaw, and then lifting it around to nudge at the other, he adds, "And you'd think Barristan the fucking Bold was soft, Ana." He lifts his head to receive the kiss, and nods, "Yeah. What the fuck is Rickart's crazy mistake doing now? I was more than a little worried we were going to have to deal with her."
"Oh, well… that does sound like a lot more work. I just have to murmur something against your ear, and I get what I want from you." And that's how romantic this relationship is, but at least it's a warm one. Anathema flashes another grin, settling in against her husband's chest with her nose brushing along his jaw. "Oh, we will have to deal with her. She is trying to be some prophet of the Seven, and Lady Anais is becoming quite… bothered that the woman will not leave the Roost. I think she is seeking herself a husband." And this woman is nearly as old as Anathema.
Tyroan snorts, "Well, or flash me your tits." Leaning back in the chair, he settles one arm around her shoulders, just a casual sort of gesture. The mention of Rebecca's wants draws a chortling snort, "Either she's old and dried up, or she's not worthy of marriage." His legs shift beneath her, and he juts them out and crosses his ankles, "So the Young Lady Dowager," he smirks at the title he makes up, "is getting pissed at Rickart's mistake. And you want to make nice by taking her off the Terricks' hands. Wonder if she can just disa-fucking-pear on the way back."
"You know damn well I can't do that in public," Anathema says dismissively. Then she sighs a bit, drawing her legs up so her knees are propped on either side of his hips. "Yes, I would like to play nice with the Terricks." She then smirks. "Perhaps I can turn her into a bird as well," she says dryly. "I'm certain none would miss the would-be Nayland if she was to disappear. After all, bandits are still a problem…" Then she smirks. "But I would rather send her to the Mire. I'm sure her father would love to see her."
Tyroan nods his head, "Too much could go wrong." He makes a low sound in his throat, "And she's still a fucking Nayland, even if we'd all rather forget about her." He thinks in silence a long moment, then shakes his head, "I think she's less trouble out and about. Uses our shitty reputation to our benefit. No one's going to do something just because the first-born damned Nayland says they should. Around Stonebridge or The Mire, someone might make that mistake, since she is a fucking Nayland."
"As you say, Husband. She will certainly do us some favors if she reveals her insanity to the rest of the Cape," Anathema resigns, though it is not without a small curve of that full smile. She leans forward now, tucking her head against his so her lips can brush at the side of his throat. "Come now, you've been coming to bed late every night since you got back from Highfield. Take me to bed, Husband. You won't even have to do any heavy lifting if you prefer." And she presses a hand to the side of his head just as her lips press to his cheek.
Tyroan opens his throat to her ministrations, shifting his hand from around her shoulders down to pat her backside, "Not like there's any heavy lifting to be done." Since she hasn't spread as some women do as they age. "Up and at 'em, Ana. I'm going to wet my whistle and I'll be right there." He turns his own head to press a steady kiss onto her lips, a solid demonstration of his interest, without the sort of burning passion that sweeps young lovers away.
"Compliments all around," Anathema teases him before she is silenced by the steady kiss, and she touches the side of his jaw with familiar fondness. Once done, she sweeps up to her feet so he may be given the freedom to see to one need before she sees to the other. "Do not keep me waiting too long, Husband," she warns him even as she loosens the knot about her robe, allowing the fabric to spill open and down her arms. It pools around her feet, and there she leaves it as she steps toward the bed with the candlelight catching the lines of her curves.
Tyroan hauls himself to his feet, catching at the laces of his jack even as he moves over to where a pitcher of Mire beer and two cups sit on a side-table. Looking back over his shoulder, he admires the form and figure of his wife of three decades with a simple sort of pleasure, nodding his head, "Not much chance of that, Ana." Pouring a cup, he swigs it down quickly, setting it aside, then starts toward the bed, stripping his jacket over his head as he goes.