|Summary:||Lord Camden shares tea with Damara.|
|Related Logs:||We Abide|
|Mon August 1, 288|
Town Square Tall Oaks
The town is nothing impressive to the eye or built up like many of those to the south, but the square is edged by placed rocks and the central area is a large pavilion for what looks like announcements. The scent of smithies and tanning fills the area and more often than not a line of freshly drying yew bows can be seen. Smalls houses and a few shops are set up, but most are for basic crafts and convenience rather than for things of leisure or finery. Everyrhing is overshadowed by the tall pines and hardwoods that loom as ever present guardians overhead. Light streams down through and only Oaks Hall stands in a clearing large enough to allow enough sunlight through.
The hour of dinner has now passed and with it, the two children of Sarojyn's have gone to tend to their own business, leaving the Lord to sit in the hall with nothing more then his thoughts. There he rested for a short period until he finally rose from his seat and made his way out of forest keep and into the town square. It's here that the Lord seems to mingle, moving from crafter to crafter and speaking quietly with those that have not retreated to their homes or the tavern for the night.
From the well she strides, the two buckets, one in either hand sloshing very little as she moves. Damara passes through the main square on her way towards the homes, slowing to smile and nod at a few people. The leather vest is gone, just her blouse and fitted trousers mark her. Boots have been exchanged for soft shoes and with some care, she navigates a small group of children in the fading light. She rolls a shoulder and starts to edge her way around the main pavilion in the square.
There doesn't appear to be pressing business this evening, for the way Sarojyn moves leads one to believe that he's lingering simply for the sake of lingering. No crafter goes unnoticed and as he moves along the ring of them, a smile has touched upon his lips. Then, the last is reached and he's turning to begin to make his way towards the tavern, eyes playing over those that linger or play in the square. It's at this point that he notices Damara and the buckets she carries and after watching for a brief moment, he's change direction so as to cross paths with her.
Drawing around the small group, she smiles faintly at the children before she begins the straightshot towards her small home along the forest edge. She looks up and then catches the Lord wandering in the square. Pausing, she slows and stops, dipping her head, "My Lord.." She speaks softly and then lifts her head. Holding still to the buckets, she waits for him, "What brings you out this evening?" She asks of him. "It is not a surprise, not at seeing him here. But a curiousity. SHe does not set down the buckets, just shifts her hip.
Drawing closer towards Damara, Sarojyn gives a slight bow of his head towards her and when it lifts back up, he's offering her a smile, "Damara. We missed you at dinner this evening." Not that he thought she would attend. But, all the same. "My son and daughter are off tending to their own business, so I thought I would come out and see what was happening in the square and to speak with those that were still working." A hand lifts, motioning towards one of the buckets, "Please, I can walk and talk if you would like to continue what you were doing."
"Ahh forgive me my Lord. Too much to do with the falcons…." Damara says and then she tilts her head, "It is good to see they are so healthy in their pursuits." The woman intones and as the sky darkens a little further even in the small moments. The grey hour is approaching and she looks to him with a fain smile. "Of course, my Lord. I will keep the buckets. Carrying them both allows me to keep balance." She tells him and then starts to pick up her pace down through the homes and hovels, the sound of dogs and soft conversation drifting out in the quiet night.
A soft chuckle escapes past Sarojyn's lips as he offers her a simple nod of his head, "I thought as much." His own eyes shift skyward when she looks in that direction and when she begins to speak again, he's looking back to her and then moving to follow her. "I would not dream of trying to take one from you, Damara. I know that you would refuse, even if the offer was extended." Hands now slip behind his back, coming to clasp together as he follows after her, his eyes playing around the homes and towards the sounds of dogs and soft conversation. "I've always enjoyed this time of the day, you know."
"Well it is peaceful, my Lord. The quiet before slumber is often the most reflective time of the evening. But it can be lonely to. I like it because the world seems to be unwinding." She smiles, not looking back. Damara makes her way down the row and then stops next to a small modest home with a small garden to the right. A few bows sit outside the house beneath the overhand to dry. "I My Lord, if you could get the door." She says, a brow lifting as she tilts her head to look up at him.
Lonely. He reflects on that for a moment before simply giving a nod of his head to indicate that he's heard, but there's nothing to be added to that. Not by him at this moment. The smile does remain upon his lips though and when they reach that home, his eyes play over the garden and the bows before looking towards the door, "Most certainly." That said, he's moving to the door so that it can be opened, but he doesn't not make his way inside. Rather, once the door has been opened, he's stepping to the side to allow her to pass.
"Thank you…" She dips her head and then enters, the one room home is small. The shutters are open to allow the air through and various herbs hang along one window and wall, bundled and the like. Earth. It smells of the woods even within the confines and she moves towarsd the large hearth and basin. SHe fills it with water for the next day as embers gleam in the dark. Really the only light is the nearly dead sun and the glow of the still burning fuel in the hearth. It makes it a bit soft and quiet, welcoming. She turns from her work and sets the buckets atop each other in the corner before wiping her hands on her thighs. "My Lord..is there something I can get you? I know it is not Tall Oaks Keep, but it is comfortable." She smiles.
It's only after Damara has entered into the home that Sarojyn moves to follow, the door being closed lightly behind him. Eyes play about the room, taking in the sight as the smell of things linger against his senses. The smile warms a bit then and at her offer, he's turning his attention back over towards her, his head giving a slight shake, "I don't want to impose upon you and your home, Damara. There is nothing that I need at this time." He does shift a bit, moving over towards one of those windows so that he can look out to the dying sun. "Tell me, my friend, why is it that you still insist on calling me My Lord after all this time?"
Kells Home Tall Oaks
A modest home if any, dirt floors with some stone work slowly being done appears to have ended at some point. Windows edge each wall and in a corner is tucked a bed for two and opposite it a smaller one. The middle fo the room is a table with four chairs and a hearth near it close enough to warm the beds during the colder seasons. It is a house with simple purpose for those that spend most time outdoors.
Watching him as he moves to the window, her green eyes watching him. "You do not impose, I am in your home far more often.." She gazes towards the beds and slowly rounds the table that takes up most of the house. Her hand trails to the back of a chair and she lifts a brow. "Because that is what you are…my Lord. You are the leader of House Camden and these lands. That does not change over the years." She informs him. Her head tilt and she stays where she is. "It would be unseemingly to call you anything else, my Lord." She tells him, turning away to set some water on for tea.
"Thank you," is offered to the fact that he does not impose and when she gives her explaination, he's turning from the window so as to one more look upon her. A low chuckle escapes his lips as he gives a slight bow of his head, "A fair enough explaination, I suppose. But when we are alone in our practices or conversation, I would not mind if you called me by my name, you know." Eyes follow her movements, watching as she gathers water for tea. "I think you have earned that right, several times over."
"Earned or not…it is best to stay the course is proper.." Damara says while she sets the kettle onto the embers. She rises stokes them a moment and then rises slowly. "My Lord…I do it as a sign of respect and station. It is best to show others that you lead them, they need that strength, they need someone to look to." She says to him, turning away again as she moves to gather the cups, pulling two just in case and grabs for the herbs to set them in the clay holders to wait for the water.
Another soft laugh escapes Sarojyn's lips as he offers her another nod of his head before moving closer towards the table, his hands coming to rest on the back of one of the chairs. "I appreciate that ideal, in all honesty. The offer does stand, though. These days, I have more then enough people calling me My Lord and fewer still that actually use my name." The words come with a smile and a slight shake of his head, "But I will leave it at that. Just know that one of these days I will get you to say my name without the use of Lord."
"I wish you luck in your ventures, my Lord." Damara says gently and then moves to stand at the next chair over, watching him. "You are always my Lord as you were for my family. I will serve you as I can. Why you think you can break me of that…I am not sure." Her arms fold before her and her head tilts before she moves about him, going to the window he was staning at to reach out and pull the shutters closed, leaning against the sill to do so.
His eyes remain focused on her for the moment, watching as she moves to the next chair over. There's no immediate response given to her words, for he's considering them and when she moves to the window to close the shutters, he's turning in place so as the watch her. The smile returns to his lips and with two steps forward, he's approaching her. "I don't seek to break you, Damara. I simply wish you to know that you have leave to call me by my name and not always be so .. formal with rank and title."
She pauses in securing the last shutter, Damara looks over her shoulder. "There are reasons for those titles, my Lord…must you insist on such a thing?" She asks him, her head tilting to watch. Finally she pulls the other shutter closed with some trouble. She has to jimmy it a bit and finally it slides into place and she locks it. Straightening, she turns to look at him, the house darker for the one window being shuttered off. "If you were not a noble born, than we would not be having this discussion." She smiles at him and then moves back past him, heading for the other window.
With a slight shake of his head, Sarojyn is quick to offer, "I will leave it as a request and nothing more, Damara. You can do as you please in that regard." The smile remains on his lips and when she has trouble with that other shutter, he looks as if he's going to step forward and help, but she's then managing to get it closed and lock it. When she moves past him so as to shutter the other window, he's turning in place to continue to watch, "You're right, we would probably not be having this conversation. For you would be calling me by my name." There's a flash of a grin before he's moving back to the table, hands coming to rest on the back of a chair as he leans forward a bit. "Is there anything I can do?"
"Take a seat, my Lord..that is what you can do and let us talk of plain things. Not of titles." Damara says, steam rising from the kettle. She secures the other shutters and they are thrown to darkness, the sounds crickets still creeping in. "I will get you some tea since you are here if you like." She is avoiding names and titles all together. Meager, her house is far too simple and it is obvious everything in it is well loved and repaired to continue to be used. "Please…join me. I do not get many visitors.."
At her mention of taking a seat, Saro is pulling the chair out from the table and then lowering himself into it, his hands coming to rest upon the table as he clasps them together. The mention of tea has him smiling softly as he offers, "I would not refuse a cup of tea, Damara." Darkness is not new to him and he doesn't seem thrown off by the fact that he now sits within it. Her mention of not receiving visitors draws only the hint of a chuckle as he murmers, "In that, you and I share a similarity."
"Ahh but you are always to expect them, my Lord." Damara says and draws the kettle up with a rag. She lifts it and turns, letting it pour free into the cups, the herbs swirling about as the steam rises from the heavy clay mugs. She sets the kettle aside and then takes them both up, setting one before him. "Let it steep, it will help you relax." She offers and then pauses. "I can set a candle if you like unless the hearth is light enough." She hesitates as if she will go to grab one if he wishes it.
"Our Forest Keep isn't prone to visitors, Damara, even you know that. Regardless of whether I'm to expect them or not." That smile warms on his lips as the tea is poured and Saro does as she says, letting it steep for the moment. The offer of the candle has him lifting a hand in the darkness, giving a slight wave and a quick chuckle before he's motioning towards a chair, "Please, sit down. This is your home and there is no need to feel as if you must wait on me."
"I wait on you not because you are my Lord, but because you are my guest." Damara states simply before lowering into her chair next to him. She sits back, relaxing as she brings her mug closer, letting the herbs steep. The sound of a distant whipperwhill fills the silence between them and she looks down at her tea, fingers idly brushing over it. "So about your daughter's possible intended, have you talked to her?" SHe asks of him in a way to start the conversation anew.
"So long as that is the reason, then I am content as we are, Damara." His hands unclasp and then curl around the mug, letting the warmth linger into his hands and warm his fingers. Eyes play down the mug, resting there for a moment before they shift back to her. "No, not yet. I'm going to send a runner to Lord Frey and see what he has to say. When I have his response, I will approach her with my suggestion." Shifting in his seat, he turns a bit towards her now, "I must admit that I'm going to be sorry to see her married, in a way. The Hall won't be the same when she's gone."
There is an understanding nod and Damara rests her chin on her hand for a moment. She sighs and sits back, "Things change, my Lord, always. It is a sad thing to lose the presence of another from one's halls. But your son will remain and the Gods bless that he find someone to give you many grandchildren to grace your halls. Then you will never want and wish for quiet times instead." There is a gentle smile on her lips and she looks down and then towards the beds in her home. It steals the smile a little but she does well to hide that change.
"Indeed they do, Damara, indeed they do." The mention of many grandchildren brings a soft laugh to his lips before he's giving a slight shake of his head, "I do not think I could ever wish for a thing." Her look towards the bed has him following her gaze and when it shifts back to her, he's canting his head just a touch to the side, "Tell me, my friend, is this how you spend your evenings? A hot cup of tea and quiet reflection amongst the soft glow of a fire?"
"Or a walk…when the weather provides, my Lord. I find sometimes that things exist again when you listen close enough." Damara has had years to accept what has happened, but some times shadows grow longer than one thinks. "It is no so bad….it is peaceful and it is just the night. I have full days that exhaust me so often there is not even room to dream." She reassures him and lifts the tea to smell it before she drinks a sip, tasting the bitter but earthy notes.
"A walk beneath the Oaks is always a comforting thing, even for me." No doubt a reference to the fact that he must take an escort when he goes. His mug is lifted to his lips, the scent lingering for a moment before he finally takes a sip. When the mug comes to lower and settle back to the table, he's giving an almost understanding nod of his head, "I wouldn't dream of saying it was bad, my friend. There is nothing wrong with enjoy the peace that such a thing has to offer and then letting sleep claim you until the morn."
"It is peaceful.." Damara reiterates and then sips more of her tea, falling to silence for a moment. The mistress looks up at him and tilts her head, "And you my Lord, what do you do in the evenings to pass your time?" She smiles anew, crossing her ankles as she sits forward some, forarm resting on the table as she turns to face him more. Ankles slide beneath her chair, fingers absently brushing over her mug.
At this particular moment, Sarojyn doesn't seem to be sitting like a Lord, for he's turning in that chair so as to face her a little more evenly. Fingers remain curled around that mug, even though it's been settled back on the table and at the mention of his evenings, he's giving but a low chuckle before answering. "Once business has been attended to, I remain in the hall for a bit and speak with Seryl and Alyse if they are around, or the staff if they chose to linger. Beyond that, I return to my room and read."
Damara nods her head, her smile growing at his chuckle. "Ahhh for scrolls and books. Tell me, what do you read, my Lord?" She tilt her head, curious in that regard. "You must forgive me, I don't really have the ability to enjoy such things, so please.." She motions for him to continue. Common born, reading was not really her skill set. She wets her lips and leans her side into the table as her leg stretches out, getting comfortable before her head lifts to look at him.
"It really depends on what I feel like, Damara. I've read the Chronicles of my family and those that have been involved with it. Now, I've been reading some history of Riverrun that I found upon one of the shelves." The mug is lifted back to his lips, another small sip taken before he's lowering it back down. "You know, you could learn such a thing if you really wanted to."
At his words of learning, she laughs a little, "My Lord jests…I am too old for such things and do not have the time for it. I have an apprentice to teach and you need a falconer more than you need a falconer who is literate, my Lord." She shakes her head, her gaze looking to her tea. "Thank you, but no. I have no need of it.." No, she has her quiet nights and tea.
"It was not entirely a jest, Damara." Her laughter has drawn the smile back to his lips, though, for that sound is always a pleasant thing. "I did not presume to make you literate over night, but I would be happy to teach you a thing or two in these quiet evenings, if you had such a mind to accept." The mug is then lifted back to his lips, a longer sip taken and when it's lowered, he's finally releasing it. "Though I would not presume to intrude on the peacefulness of your evenings."
Silent as he speaks and even after, Damara smiles into her tea and then at him. It warms her eyes and in the very faint light, she considers him. "I would like that.." She tells him softly. It apparently is an offer to break up those evenings that has won her. "My Lord is very kind to offer such things to me." She dips her head. "You have such patience with your people, thank you." It is meant and she adds, "The people of Tall Oaks are lucky to have you. I am lucky."
Her acceptance warms the smile on his lips and it has Saro offering a slight bow of his head towards her, "Then it shall be so, Damara." Then, when she begins to speak of his kindness and patience, he shifts a bit in his seat. A hand lifts from the cup and moves to come to rest on her arm, the smile growing just a bit more, "Years ago I said that I would be nothing without the people of Tall Oaks. I still hold to that belief, my friend. I am lucky to have them."
The touch is not something that has never occurred before but she gives pause, her head lifting as the warmth of his hand snakes through her blouse sleeve to her skin. Damara smiles and nods her head, "House Camden has ruled in wisdom for many generations. I know your son will after you." She lets her arm linger enough to be polite and then withdraws it slowly, letting his hand rest on the table unless she is stopped. "When do you care to start the lessons?" She asks of the Lord, the quiet darkness making him seem less a noble and more a simple man which seems to relax her.
It's a touch that isn't offered very often and when she withdraw's her arm from his hand, he makes no move to stop her. When his hand comes to settle on the table, he's pulling it back to him as he murmers, "I know he will as well." There is a certain ease and rest within him and it's evident in the way he seats and moves. "We can start tomorrow evening if you would like."
"If it please my Lord. Where would my Lord care to meet?" Damara asks, her hand taking up her tea in the idleness now, the warmth from his hand still an impression upon her arm. She smiles wanly and sets her mug down, rising suddenly for to get the kettle. She rests her hand against the top of the hearth, pressing a hand to her chest. There is a moment she tenses but then she slowly bends down - slowly.
"It will please me if it's good for you, Damara. If not, then another night will be fine." The mug is lifted back to his lips, a slow sip taken of the warm tea before it's lowered to the table. "And we can meet either here, if you like, or in the keep. It matters not to me." When she suddenly rises and moves towards the hearth, only to then bend, slowly, Saro is rising from his spot at the table, "Is something wrong?"
Her voice comes out in a rushed strain. "I am well…just short on breath..I will be okay. I have these moments." She says gently. Damara rises slowly and slowly lets herself ease out of the tightness in her chest. "All is well, my Lord." She says, turning away to set the kettle down to cool for the evening on the stone slab. She scoops the rest of the herbs into the kettle itself and then closes it. She draws deep breathes, the pain slowly easing further away before she manages a smile, her back still to him.
She may state that all is well, but her voice leads Saro to think otherwise and he takes a step towards her. Then, there's those drawn breaths and he's moving closer, a hand lifting to come to rest on her shoulder in a light, concerned touch. "Well you may be, Damara, but sit and let this moment pass. The kettle can wait." A pause and he's following with, "Please?"
"My Lord..please.." But at his own bidding, she turns, leaving the tea. Damara moves back to her chair and takes the tea, bringing to her lips, breathing it in slowly. The steam rises and doesn't seem to help. She wheezes a moment and closes her eyes. Pained for a moment or two longer, before her breathing starts to ease. "I am fine…please.." She tries to assure him. Her hand rests on the table, curling a little as she fights through the episode.
With his hand falling from her shoulder as she turns to move back to her chair, Saro simply shifts in place, eyes following her movements as he gives a slight shake of his head. Any trace of that smile has faded and for a moment, concern lights in his eyes. Her words seem to do little to temper it, though it fades just a touch as her breathing begins to ease. "You are a frustrating sort of woman, Damara." Those words are offered with genuiene affection and as he moves back towards her, his hand is coming back to her shoulder. "But take the advice and rest a moment. All else can wait until this has passed."
"I am glad I can be a constant trial, my Lord. It gives me purpose." She manages a smile. Damara gets her breath back slowly, very slowly. When there is finally relief, her eyes are reddened from the watering and strain. "I think my Lord, that you may have had enough of my simple home." She offers him a faint smile, looking up. "It always passes, my Lord. Nothing to worry about.." She again, tries to reassure him before she takes up her tea and drinks of it slowly.
A low laugh escapes Saro's lips as he offers her another shake of his head, "I enjoy your constant trials, my friend. It's refreshing." A soft jest of sorts and when things seem to finally pass, he's letting his hand once more fall from her shoulder. "I am glad to hear that it passes, though perhaps you should speak with my Maester and have it looked into." It's then that he's moving around the table and towards the door, catching her polite excusal. "Please, be well, Damara."
Her head dips and she rises as he moves to the door. "I will do my best, my Lord." She says. Damara moves to see him to the door. "And you as well, my Lord." She says softly. A gentle smile as she waits near the door, hands clasped before her. Fingers twine together and she waits patiently. "I will see you, tomorrow eve, my Lord." She dips another small bow, her gaze lifting to meet his again.