|Nothing Comes Easy|
|Summary:||Cherise visits Riordane's office/chambers to inquire about the charges against her Household and husband Aleister.|
|Related Logs:||All Charlton arrest logs|
|Riordan's Office/Chambers, Tordane Tower|
|Papers everywhere and elegant decorum.|
|Thu Jun 14, 289|
On the opposite side of Riordan's door, a tower guard followed protocal as he formed the Regent of Cherise's arrival. The mid-day meal had came and went when normally around this hour the markets were full. Rumor had it that the town of Stonebridge was enmbraced by an unsettling quiet. While waiting for her official permission to enter the Nayland's offices, the lady idly pinched and smoothed at the red colored shawl looped around the torso then draped over her arms.
When the Lady Charlton is shown into the Regent's chambers, it is a servant who opens the door and shows the lady in. Dressed in the livery of the Naylands of Stonebridge, he also bears the personal badge of Ser Riordan, the quartered harpy, marking this man as the personal manservant of the Nayland knight. Riordan, for his part, is at a table that contains several ledgers and a collection of parchments, which seem rather scattered haphazardly before him. Conversely, on a sidetable nearby, there are other books and scrolls, but these have been ordered rather neatly and with a sense of organization, as if by an entirely different hand. "Lady Cherise," Riordan greets, pleasantly, his normally easy smile a bit distracted as, rather then getting up, he merely inclines his head and turns back to the paperwork before him. Even as he pens a few more figures, he asks, "What can I do for you, my lady?"
Once permitted entry, Cherise enters the Regent's chambers and greets with an equally pleasant tongue. "Lord Regent." A brief sweep of her eyes take in the manservant's tailored appeal before they return to Riordan plagued by an assault of paperwork. "I believe that is a question best reversed, what may House Charlton do for you." She ventures a few steps further into the chamber, casually glancing over the various articles that decorate it as the Nayland knight turned his attention to the paper work.
There seems little in the way of personal effects in the room, at least on display. Aside from the flurry of paperwork before him, it is kept neat and clean, and tastefully and richly furnished as befits the chambers of one who, for all intents and purposes, holds the position of Lord over the holding of Stonebridge. Riordan, for his part, is dressed the same, the colors of his house worked in discreetly amongst his own apparel. "If you would like to know something, my lady, you've but to ask," Riordan says quietly, this time not even bothering to lift his eyes from his paperwork as he makes a few more marks on a ledger.
Cherise's gaze narrows on Riordan's blatant display of disinterest. For only a moment. The lady keeps her hands folded before her abdomen, an all too natural stance for women of high birth. She asks blatantly, "How do you see this turning out for your house and mine m'lord?"
Frowning at the ledger, Riordan lets out a grunt. Setting the quill in the inkwell, he gestures to his manservant, who approaches with a cloth for the Regent to wipe the ink off his hands on. As he does this, the knight turns his gaze to the Lady, raising an eyebrow. "I did not realize that the rumors hold that I can now predict the future," he says, lips quirking in a wry smile. "I hope however, that your lord husband had broken the law may be resolved peaceably and soon, however."
She initially reacted by raising her brow, standing before his desk while he remained sitting. "Actions we commit seal our own futures. A simple request would have us set upon different paths." And yet here they are. "What is this law my husband supposedly broken? Our courtesy has remained as it was, filling the coffers of your Innkeeper quite rewardingly so." Cherise draws a little closer to the window that permitted a decent enough circulation of air. "Had this only been issue with my husband's men, my son, and myself would not be here, would we?"
"My lady, this is not a personal vendetta of mine. My Sheriff brought to my attention that your husband had broken my law, and sought my permission to execute his duty. I granted him leave. That was it. I and my House have shown you and yours every courtesy while we work out this unforunate incident. If you have any complaint with my hospitality, by all means, please inform me." Riordan says this calmly and quietly as he finishes wiping his hands, giving the cloth back to his servant, and standing. "As for the law in regards to your husband's actions, do you honestly believe that it is legal for another House to take over a structure, any structure, within another's demense without permission or leave and not have it viewed as unlawful? While the rest of the able bodied men were out rescuing you, your husband and those sworn to your house not only took up residence in that structure with armed men, but barred all others from entering. And then he simply sat there, while others risked their lives to rescue his wife." He does not say the word coward, not at all… but there's a good chance that the word might linger in the Regent's thoughts.
She scoffs, dismissing the implied actions of Aleister. "My husband searched for me." Impossible to believe otherwise. "Perhaps not with all the other houses but he did, and to imply he had not," Cherise's gaze tightens. "And this is sworn statement from the innkeeper, my husband had 'seized' the Inn for his men?" Large blue eyes roll heavily. "You had not only my husband's lawfully armed men occupying Stonebridge but hosts of others I am told. And yet, were any men from those houses arrested for being armed? Is it unlawful for men to carry their swords now?"
"My lady," Riordan says, still quietly, still patient, even as he moves to pour himself a glass of wine, "I am not sure if you are aware, but all the houses were working in concert with eachother. The day that this all happened, we had narrowed down the possible locations to four, all within an area of eachother, and we had scouts going to each, so all knew we would be finding you all shortly. All the houses who had able bodied men, not just the ones with women held, were invited to take part in the rescue. There was open communication and cooperation such as there has not been seen in this area in… I am not sure when the last time such has taken place, outside obligation to the crown." Wordlessly, he gestures to Cherise to see if she would like him to pour her a drink, even as he continues speaking, "So forgive me if I find it hard to believe if your husband was attempting to rescue you by enjoying a pint at the Crossing."
She listened of course, one arm folded across her abdomen as the other soon mirrored it's twin. Not to deny a drink, she displays a subtle nod of accepting the gesture. "You lay fault at my husband for chosing a different course of action? Tell me Riordan," She tossed aside formality with seriousness weighing her tone. "Are you entirely surprised by this? Through our short time here when have you ever witnessed my husband work in concert with another that had not been out of obligation of duty? Perhaps on the isles? He is sworn to his King, Lord Frey, our uncle Lord Keegan and bound by the Seven to me." She shakes her head, glancing over her shoulder to the Lord Regent, "Aleister has always carved his own road and refuses to walk upon the paths others will travel." Cherise does turn around, at last, still embracing herself with hands entangled within her shawl. "On what day had my husband, supposedly, taken over the Inn? Do you know of his where abouts on the day of our capture? The day after? Any day inbetween?"
Riordan's movements to pour Cherise a drink still at her words for a moment, and he turns his eyes to her in obvious surprise, studying for a long moment. Whatever he finds, he seems disappointed, and so he wordlessly goes back to pouring her the wine, which he hands to her. It is a long moment before he finally speaks again, taking his time sipping from his own glass. And when he does speak, it is not to answer her questions. "Since we are now speaking informally, perhaps I can get in a question of mine own, Cherise." He raises an eyebrow, as he asks, "Hypothetically, if I for whatever reason, were to give you and your son permission to leave, here and now, would you? Or would you remain by your husband until this ordeal is over?"
Her heavy gaze was focused upon Riordan until the glass was offered. There was a breath of hesitation before it was accepted. "Then, hypothetically, it is a decision to be made by my husband." She says with a straight face and holding the glass, not yet drinking. "Will you not answer my questions?"
"I have answered all I will at the moment, Lady Cherise, as have you, it seems," Riordan says, perhaps a bit crypically. He studies her over the rim of his cup as he takes a few more sips, before saying, "For what it is worth, you've my apologies that you were put in this position so soon after your ordeal. And my apologies as well that we did not get to you sooner. We worked as hard as we could to find you. I hope you can forgive us." He genuinely means the sentiment, even as he bows his head courtesously, and offers a polite, "Now, if you'll forgive me, I have matters to attend to. Have a good day, my lady. If there is anything you lack during your stay here, however long that might be, please do not hesitate to let me know." And then, polite gestures observed, he and his wine move back to settle down at the table, with his paperwork.
Cherise raises her chin a bit higher. "I might have accepted your apologies to heart had I believed they were made in earnest. This is unjust capture, no better than the bandits who robbed so many houses of their beloveds." The Lady Charlton moves towards the desk and returns the offered wine to the Nayland lord with harsh intent, causing a few splashes of ruin upon the papers spread along the center region he was so eager to return to. "See that this unfortunate situation is ended swiftly Lord Regent, I will not have my son having his first memories of being wrongly imprisoned." She does turn about, the manservant opens the door for her leave. Before she crosses the threshold of his chambers Cherise turns over her shoulder, leaving the Regent with, "Men struggling to retain power make foolish mistakes." With nothing else the lady is guided out of the chambers and escorted to her room to reunite with her son.
By the time Cherise turns back to deliver her final remarks, she will find Riordan scribbling in his ledgers once more. He does, however, look up at her words. And the expression he gives is one of mild patience, though he otherwise shows no reaction. And, when she does take her leave, he will go back to his work, holding silence. It isn't for a few minutes after Cherise is gone that he finally speaks, when Stanley, his manservant, clears his throat and gives the Regent a questioning look. Interpretting the silent question, Riordan says, "Have her locked up with Valda. That'll teach them both. And fetch me more wine while you're at it." The manservant raises an eyebrow, but does not move. Grunting, Riordan rolls his eyes, turning back to his books. "Yes, I'm kidding." A beat. "Not about the wine, Stanley. Water it down some more though. It's going to be a long day, I think."