|Not for Me|
|Summary:||Marriage and dances are among the topics for discussion at the Rockcliff.|
|Rockcliff Inn, Terrick's Roost|
|The Rockcliff Inn is one of the better inns within the town and it shows with the well-lit interior and the relative cleanliness to the other locations in Terrick's Roost. The tables are polished with oils and the floor regularly swept. A set of booths towards a darker rear of the Inn's bottom floor, just beneath the staircase, are where whores generally socialize and eye prospects from when not waiting tables. Signs over the undersized bar area advertise prices for ales and wines as well as several different choices of food to be served at the small eating area by the bar or in the main open area in its comfortable seating. A door behind the bar leads to the kitchen and cellar while another near the staircase leads to a private room that would appear to be off-limits to the 'wait staff' except for food and drink service.|
|Thu Feb 07, 290|
Evening has fallen on Westeros and while the young may be in bed, the adults are still up and about. Some of them are even out and about as well in inns and taverns up and down the land. The Rockcliff is no exception, and while it's by no means packed, business appears to be brisk enough and there’s a good level of background conversation. At the bar, having a brief conversation with the barman on duty is Mortimer, he's no drink in front of him and he still has his cloak on which possibly suggests that this is perhaps not a social conversation. Nor though, does it seem to be a long one, for the barman soon shakes his head which leads to Mortimer nodding his before he turns back towards the door.
Dania dressed in a sage green linen dress steps into the establishment. Her hair is neat as a pin and she is carrying her saddle bags over her shoulder. She pauses just inside of the doorway so her eyes may adjust to the light. Rolling her head her neck pops and she sighs. She looks worn out. It is then she catches sight of Mortimer. "Good evening deputy." She calls to him. "Are you here on business?" She asks before she thinks. She then stops at the bar and rubs the back of her neck.
Nathaniel is standing with several locals before the small section of wall that serves as a public notice-board in the town. He is reading aloud to some locals who are staring at the board as well. "House Nayland invites you to Stonebridge to attend a Masquerade in Stonebridge to celebrate Stranger's Day. Those who participate in the event should follow tradition by dressing in costume. The festivities will include food, drink, and music. The celebration will begin in ten days, at the second candle-mark after noon. All citizens of the Roost are welcome." He looks at the locals and nods. "There you are." In answer to a question, he explains, "Stonebridge is a day's walk if you start at first light, or a half-day's ride. You'll find inns there if you wish to stay overnight." Then, after another question, he shrugs. "Lords and ladies will be there, but common-folk are welcome, too. Do I need to read anything else for you?" One of the townsfolk shakes her head, and he nods. Turning from the board, he looks around the room while he considers what to do next.
"Aye Mistress," Mortimer confirms with a slight tilt of his head before he nods briefly towards the barman. "It's nothing that can't keep though if you're needing something?" he offers, noting her obvious tiredness, "Master Fullbringer not with you?" The crowd near Nathaniel was noted earlier but gets a second look now that he's concluded his business with the barman, leading to the courier being offered a brief nod before he turns back to Dania to await her answer.
"I have not seen the good Master this day, why what is happening?" Dania asks as she continues to rub her neck. "I am fine, just tired. It has been a long day. I going to see if I can beg a heel of bread from the good keeper here and then I will seek my bed. I am also hoping to get some cider." She smiles "How are you doing?" She asks him. "Long day?" Her gaze then goes to Nathaniel and she eyes him curiously. "Master Nathaniel, what are you speaking of?" She asks him.
Nathaniel rolls his shoulders but smiles when he sees Mortimer. He strolls toward the deputy and greets, "Master Trevelyan!" he greets. "I hope that you aren't still working." Then he nods to Dania, and adds, "Nor you, Mistress. You especially should have some time to relax. You look as frayed as a worn rope." Then he looks at the healer when she mentions begging for bread. He shakes his head. "You need not beg, mistress, nor confine yourself to bread." He walks up to the bar and raps his buckles on it to gain the attention of the barkeep. He looks again to Dania, and offers, "I'll buy you a bowl of stew, a small loaf, and a cup of cider to pay for your care of Kalira." He glances back to the notice-board. "I was reading a notice about the celebration at Stonebridge," he explains. Then he looks to Mortimer, and invites, "Would you like something as well, master?"
Mortimer looks faintly surprised that the healer has not seen her apprentice, but then the lad is local so he supposes that he's probably just been catching up with friends and family. "Nothing is happening," he answers with a shake of his head, "I had just though to see him with you." At her questions he shakes his head once more, "not particularly, quiet but not too long and I'm fine thank you." A faint smile is offered to Nathaniel as he replies, "am I ever not?" before holding a hand up to decline the offer of sustenance. "I've eaten," he offers, tilting his head briefly towards the door to indicate he's had his meal at home. Another glance towards the board and he asks the courier, "were you planning on going?"
"No, please just bread. You will end up eating the stew Nathaniel, I do not have the stomach for more because I am tired." Dania tells him as she protests. "What of the celebration what are they doing for it?" Her gaze then goes to Mortimer. "Deputy, do you have need of him? If so I can send him your way." She studies him as she says this. "I do not mind. In fact I can locate him tonight. He was gathering herbs for us. We are low on some supplies."
Nathaniel inclines his head when both Mrotimer and Dania decline his offers."Very well," he acknowledges. "But you will have bread, and more than a heel. The cook bakes fine, soft rolls." He looks to the barkeep, who has made his way to Nathaniel's place at the bar. "Two rolls, please, and two cups of cider," he orders. Turning back to his friends, he explains, "It's masked ball, mistress. According to the post, there will be food, drink, and music. Where you have music, you usually have dancing." Then to Mortimer, he adds, "There is also a … mischievous tradition to the event. Old legends say that on that day, the Stranger overlooks mischief. I'm not sure if I'll go. Mischief is more of a thing that Ser Darek would have done before his knighthood."
Mortimer shakes his head again, "No no, Mistress, I was simply surprised to see you here and him not. That is all, I promise you." He nods his agreement to Nathaniel's comment about the cook's abilities although he remains faithful to his wife's and declines once more when the barman looks to him to see if he has anything to add. "Has the lad stopped such antics now he has his spurs?" he asks, sounding faintly surprise, "although I suppose I shouldn't call him a lad now that he's a knight. Makes you start to feel old when knights are looking that young I can tell you."
"You will not find me there that is for certain. The dance I went to was almost a year ago and it was dismal failure. I think that from now on I am going to stay close to home. You should take Kalira to the dance. If she needs something fancy I have a nicer dress she can wear." She adds as she stifles a yawn. She moves to rub her lower back with a knuckle. She looks to Mortimer. "I will see you on the morrow then, I got called away to attend one of the village woman." She laughs. "Then I am ancient as I am almost twenty six. Hopefully I will live to see the age of twenty seven." She grins. "Speaking of baking is your wife baking on the morrow in the morning? If so I will buy a loaf from her."
Nathaniel looks at Mortimer and then Dania. "If both of you are leaving, then I should ask the barman to wrap the roll for you and bring the cider in a small jug," he offers. When Dania urges him to take Kalira to dance at the masquerade, he shrugs. "That might not be wise. Someone in disguise might tempt her, and lead her away from me forever." Still, he smiles at the thought. "She has some fine dresses that she wore when she served as a handmaiden, before she became a courier. She is lovely in them, but I'll tell her about your offer. She might want something new if we go."
"You have a while yet before you can proclaim yourself ancient Mistress," Mortimer answers to Dania, a hint of amusement in his tone. He'd know after all, he's the one approaching ancient. The query directed at him has him pausing a moment to think about it before he's forced to shrug, "I'm honestly not sure, I'd imagine so but I'm afraid I can't promise." Resting his hands on his belt he looks faintly amused to Nathaniel and answers, "I wasn't leaving, but if you're trying to get rid of me then just say the word, I'm sure I can find somewhere else to be."
"Well then let her know and tell her I will be very happy to hem it. It is deep hunter green and there is some embroidery on it." She explains. "I am certain that none will take her away. If she wants to be with you then she will. If not then she will not." Dania tells him in a pragmatic fashion. "I am also not leaving yet.. If I did it would just be to bed." She looks back to Mortimer. "Ancient for a woman in the eyes of many, cobwebs in my womb don't you know." This is said in a light hearted teasing tone. She pats her stomach when she says that. "Honestly Mortimer, I think he is anxious to tuck us both into bed."
Nathaniel chuckles and shakes his head. "Not at all!" he protests. "Indeed, only a few minutes ago, I offered stew, and whatever the master would wish. I'll admit that someone is missing, but I have no desire that either of you should be absent." He nods to Dania and urges, "You should go to the ball as well. How can you say that no man will care for you until you give everyone a chance?" He grins to Mortimer, and adds, "If nothing else, you should come if Lady Faline ventures east, to guard her."
"Well I am ancient," Mortimer replies in an equally light hearted tone, "so maybe he has a point, but they say stubbornness comes with age so I shall just have to be contrary and refuse to." He then glances over to Nathaniel and adds, "besides, you want to tuck me into bed, you have to marry me first and I reckon I know someone who might take umbrage at that." Nathaniel's last statement gets him a look though before he answers more flatly, "were it being hosted here I might take the wife, as is though, I have no intention of being anywhere bar my own home. Lady Faline can take men of the garrison, as she's supposed to."
"Nobles will be the death of me or sickness. I have been spit on and treated like the dirt beneath their feet. I will treat any who come to me and I will treat them with kindness and compassion and use my skill to the fullest for them." This is said in a soft quiet bitter voice. "But, I will not go to dance. As for a man caring for me, I can stand on my own two feet. After all some say I am a failed Maester in disguise." She takes deep breath and slowly lets it out. "I am sorry that was unkind for me to say. I will think about going dance."
She then looks to Mortimer. "I take it the Lady was in rare form? " She then laughs. "Indeed my money is on your wife, it came between her and Nathaniel." She teases.
Nathaniel shakes his head. "Some nobles are kind, mistress. I know that. Still, I understand your wariness. As for the other, if a man cares for you, that doesn't mean that you are less capable than he, nor that he has any right to look down upon you. You have talents and you have charms. I hope for you to find a man with eyes to see and admire those qualities, and to welcome you into his life and heart."
"I'd bet on her against most of the knights in the tower were it something she cared about," Mortimer agrees with a part amused, part proud smile, "they'd be racing to drop the portcullis to keep her out." As for Faline? He just gives a faint shrug at that before attempting to clarify, "I don't travel well Mistress, never have. I've no complaints on her behaviour." Not that he'd be talking about it openly in public if he did mind. He offers a silent nod of agreement to Nathaniel as the other man speaks before offering in support, "I was a fair sight older than you Mistress before I married. Anything is yet possible."
"You both are kind, I have what I want. Marriage is not for me. I am content. Just wary after what happen the Ashwoods. I will not say more on the matter, but I do not trust them." She says softly.
Then she laughs. "Oh I have a feeling that the knights would be racing. She will give them a run for their money, but I will put my money on her." She shakes her head and picks up her cider. "Thank you for the bread and cider." She tells Nathaniel.
Mortimer raises an eyebrow slightly at the negative reference to the Ashwoods, but takes the hint about her not wanting to talk about it. A story for another time maybe. Glancing back at Nathaniel he smiles a little then nods once, "thats one way of putting it. Speaking of which though I should probably take my leave, before I end up on the receiving end of it." He offers the pair of them a brief nod in parting before adding to Dania, "I'll see you in the morning Mistress. Goodnight to you both."
"I will see you in the morning then. Rest well." Dania offers him a bow of her head. "May you rest well Deputy."
"Nathaniel that is kind of you to say that." She tells him. She nibbles on the bread. "For now I should eat this bread, drink this cider and go to bed, before I let my temper get the best of me."
Nathaniel inclines his head to both Dania and Mortimer. "Be well and safe through the night," he offers. "I should go as well."