|Summary:||Anais and Jacsen take a break from searching for ammunition.|
|Related Logs:||Riverrun Logs|
|Library — Riverrun|
|A fairly extensive library.|
|November 19, 288|
As requested, Anais has spent the better part of the last couple of days in the library at Riverrun. It usually leaves her with a headache before long, and it takes her a few hours to recuperate in the evening, but she's shown a surprising facility for finding books in unexpected places, or looking at things from a different angle. As the day has worn on, though, her searching has slowed, the headache starting to set in as the light from the windows fades and servants bring in candles to replace it. "Jace?" she calls softly, sitting up a little straighter in her chair to search for him.
Anais stretches carefully, wincing when something pops softly in her neck. "I was wondering if you'd found anything useful." Stiff from sitting, she pushes back her chair to stand slowly, rubbing a hand at her temple. "Or useful enough to justify taking a break," she admits under her breath. Steps soft, she moves to take up a place at his side, slipping an arm around his waist.
"Nothing so remarkable yet, but…" Jacsen turns into his wife, and presses a kiss to her forehead. "I'm certain you've had more than enough strain for the evening," he offers in a gentle murmur. "Why don't you go back and rest for the evening, Anais?"
"Because you're still here," Anais answers, turning her brow to his shoulder after his kiss. "And while my eyes are tired, the rest of me is not." She slips her other arm around his waist as well, joining her hands at his hip. "Talk to me," she murmurs, letting her eyes drift closed. "Tell me what you're thinking."
A warm breath crosses her brow, a sigh from his mouth. "Little on this, if truth be told Anais." Jacsen seeks to place her head beneath his chin, and draws an arm close around his wife. "It's…"
"Complicated?" Anais guesses, the sound of a smile in her voice, muffled as it is by his own body. "Difficult? Uncertain? Aren't these the things our lives are made of right now?" For all her words, though, she fits easily against him, the only stiffness in her that which comes from sitting for too long.
"No. It's Jaremy," Jacsen says after a long moment of silence. And just that, leaving it to hang in the air. When he continues, it is reluctant. "Ser Rygar and his men fell upon an encampment of rabble, led by my unfortunate brother. He is still much alive, but captured at Stonebridge." His shoulders sag a bit at the last, and he leans into Anais.
"Oh, Jacsen," Anais murmurs, leaning back just enough to look up at him. "Oh." She presses her lips together, brows furrowing in sympathy. "Oh, Jaremy." Gentle, she reaches a hand up to cup his cheek, her palm warm against his skin. "Have they demanded a ransom for him?" she asks, though it it's a hopeful question, there's very little hope in her voice.
He shakes his head. "Not yet, no. I doubt that they will, I think that the only reason we know is because of a promise Ser Rygar made to Jarod… or, rather, Jarod demanded one of him by honor," Jacsen explains. "Perhaps Rickart Nayland will demand something, but I think between the lot of them, they'd rather see my brother dead." He takes a step back, his steadying hand moving from the table to the arm of his chair which he sinks into. "Jarod's gone to convince Rygar to let him take the Black."
"He's-" Anais' tone starts indignant, and then breaks off with a sharp hiss of breath, eyes closing tight in a wince. "Not a man of noble blood," she finishes quietly. "Not any more. Oh, Jacsen." Pressing a hand to her brow, she paces a few steps before stopping, shaking her head. "He'll have every legal right and power to execute him."
Jacsen nods once to that, with a bitter laugh. "The same measure by which we protect ourselves, damns him," he says, his hands settling about the arms of the chair, where they slowly wind. "He's a fool, I'll not deny it, but he is still a valuable knight, and could do some good upon the Wall. Jarod hopes to find a way in which to impart that to Rygar, that he might concede to letting Jaremy live. Whatever comes, I have no hope that it will involve my brother living a free life again. That much is certain."
"I'm so sorry, Jacsen." Anais moves back to his side, leaning a hip against the arm of his chair. "I…The only advice I could give would sound horrible. Horrible enough that you'd have to follow through on it, because the Naylands wouldn't believe you'd do it." She sets a hand to his shoulder, far more comforting than the words that follow. "We hung Amelia. If she told the truth, we hung one of theirs. Disowned, illegitimate. But all the same. So now they hold Jaremy. And…Damn, and damn."
His eyes fall shut. "What is that advice you would give me, Anais?"
"Tywin Lannister would kill Rowan," Anais sighs softly. "But I can't give you that advice. Besides, I doubt they're very attached to Rowan at this point anyhow." Gentle fingers trace through his hair, trying to offer some small comfort. "They'll try to trade him for Stonebridge. You know that, yes?"
Her suggestion does not seem to trouble him so much, if indeed she thought it would, though he does say, "Rowan is not ours to touch, anymore, he is a ward of Oldstones… I cannot damage Ser Anton's honor so." Jacsen lets out a slow breath, before his features lift and his eyes open anew. "They will, and I will refuse them, Anais. There is no other choice than that."
"I'm sorry." It's all there is to say, and Anais leans forward to press a kiss to his temple. "You're right. But I'm sorry that you're in a place to have to say it." Quiet, she slips an arm around his shoulders, rubbing gently at his arm. "Is there anything you think I could do to help?"
Jacsen shakes his head quietly, reaching over to put a hand atop his wife's. "Nothing now, save for prayers spoken for his sake. For my kin, whom must harden their hearts so. Jarod, especially." He lets out a breath. "I think I need out of this library, Anais. If I could, I would sleep in Terrick's Roost tonight, or at the least Seaguard. I've had my fill of Riverrun."
"Fair enough," Anais answers, giving his hand a squeeze and slipping from the chair. She offers her other hand then, palm up. "Come. We'll go for a ride and be surprised beyond the walls when the sun goes down and be forced to spend the night away from all of this. We'll come back in the morning and do what we must then."
He considers her for a moment, but shakes his head slightly. "We should not be far, should word come from the Roost or Stonebridge," Jacsen remarks, though he can't be completely against the idea when he asks, "Where would we spend the night, after all?"
"In a clearing," Anais suggests. "On the riverbanks." She pauses then, arching a brow. "There's a Godswood here, isn't there? Maybe we could spend the night there." In case he was ever wondering about her general level of piety, that probably answered any questions.
"Perhaps we could go down to the village. Find a nice enough tavern to listen to song, have drinks, and talk to those we'll never know again," Jacsen tells his wife, "And fall into some bought bed besides. I can have a pair of the guards dress less conspicuous, even, and no one will no for certain who we are." Aside from that whole limp, maybe.
"Perfect," Anais says without a pause. "One where there's music, even," she adds with a small smile, the corners of her eyes crinkling as much with weariness as with anticipation. "Come. We'll go change and decide what our story shall be. Would you like to be a rich merchant, or perhaps a bard? A former pirate making a more honest way for himself?"
He nods, once. "Music, certainly. And a pirate?" Jacsen snorts with a laugh. "Why, would you like to be my Ironborn bride, stolen away from your home like so much pirate booty? You've the fair hair and complexion for the ruse." He smirks at that, not certain if she'll laugh or want to hit him.
Anais arches a brow, skeptical. "I'm not nearly crude enough to pass for Ironborn," she says archly. "Besides, you don't steal an Ironborn bride," she adds, dry. "I mean, you might steal them to begin with, but they don't exactly stay easily kept, and you can't take your eyes off them for long, lest you lose something else. If they didn't want to be caught to begin with, that is." She sets a hand to her hip, smile quirking. "You can be a bard," she decides. "And I shall be your muse, who's run off with you on account of the beautiful songs you've composed in my honor."
He laughs at that. "A bard! And what happens when these good folk think to coerce a song out of me?" Jacsen wonders of his wife, his brow raised, "Or they ask after one of these songs I've so lured you away from your good upbringing with, him? Shall I sing them Lord Jerold's Lament? For I think that's one of the few songs of late I've the lyrics for, and I think my voice not quite such to make anyone swoon."
"I don't think you'll be any better at proving yourself a pirate," Anais points out with some amusement, smile slipping crooked. "How about /I/ be the pirate, and you can be my…first mate, who is very clever and takes care of all of the business of being a pirate, while I take care of the ship and the pirating," she suggests. "I'll even wear a nice, tight pair of pants."
Jacsen's lips quirk at that, as he leans over to take something of a look at his wife's backside. "Tight pair of pants? I did not even know you owned such a thing… but perhaps we ought not go much further then our rooms if so…" He coughs, discreetly. "My Pirate Queen."
"They're tight because I was thirteen the last time I could wear them in public," Anais admits with a rueful laugh. "I was very cross when Mother said I shouldn't wear them on our trips at sea anymore. You've no idea how impossible it is to climb rigging in a dress." She pauses, lips quirking against a broader smile. "Which was the point, I'm sure."
"So my offer to head to our bedchambers so you can climb some rigging, as you said…" Jacsen questions, his lips twisting with some wry sort of humor, "Is that something you'll be taking up, Your Pirate Grace?"
Anais arches a brow, setting a hand to her hip. "I've been trying to get you out of that chair for ages, first mate," she drawls, smile settling at one corner of her lips. "We've important business to be about, after all."
His shoulders chuckle somewhat with his laughter, and Jacsen reaches for his cane so that he can push himself up to his feet. The research they'd conducted over the afternoon is considered by the sweep of his gaze, and for a blessed few moments, seems completely far away from where he is. "Aye, Captain," Jacsen tells his wife, the Pirate Queen, with a quirk of his lips. "Lead the way."