|Summary:||Jacsen visits the reading room, and Josse has a little time to catch up.|
|Related Logs:||Most everything recent.|
|The room has a large glass window and seat that looks out partially over the cove, in daylight hours the sun provides illumination to the room. Other stools and chairs linger in small groups as shelves along the walls are littered with scrolls, books, letters and documents. The contents are a modest collection of local records, histories, and literature offered to both the family and guests of Four Eagles Tower.|
|Sat Aug 20, 288|
This room is no longer as dusty as it was when Josse first began reorganizing it. Wood has been wiped down and windows cleaned so that the afternoon sunlight no longer peers in between fingerprint-shaped smears. The bigger task is still left though — putting in order all the papers and books and old letters and everything else. Crates sit idly around in the papery mess, partly unpacked of their literary offerings.
The septon is alone in here, sitting at an old desk with parchment in front of him and quill in hand, a stack of scrolls nearby for the cataloguing. His elbow is braced on the table and closed hand against his cheek, the quill bobbing idly between his fingers instead of being set to page.
It would be difficult for one to lodge a complaint against Jacsen for coming upon them unawares, for each step he takes in crossing the distance into the reading room is paired with the light rap of his cane, muffled by the carpets upon an otherwise hard floor. "Septon," he calls as he crosses the threshold into the room proper, his already slow gait becoming more muted, as if he had found his destination. And when Josse deigns to answer his call? The Terrick lord bows his head out of some respect, and offers the man a small smile. "I hope I am not interrupting anything too important… though I'm certain of late it's all of import."
Josse certainly heard Jacsen, for at some point between the first sound of the older man's stilted gait and his first words, the quill stops bobbing. Chair legs scrape quietly on the floor as he stands up. "Lord Jacsen." The returned head bow is lower than the one given him first. "No interruption. I'm sure I'd forget to breathe if someone didn't come in every so often. And I'd meant to be by and see you days ago, but everything's…run away with us." His thin smile is quite wry. "Sit if you like. I promise there are other chairs in this mess somewhere."
"Whatever do you mean, Septon?" Jacsen wonders with a feigned innocence and a dry tone. "Everything seems completely peaceable to me, of late." The wry twist of his lips does away with any chance his seriousness could be mistaken. The Terrick looks about a moment, finding another seat near Josse's own, and slowly makes his way to it, lifting the scattered volumes and placing them on a nearby surface. It's slower, with one hand to do it instead of two, but Jacsen sees it done. "I myself was keen to visit and catch up, but, as you say. This was not how I would have chosen to return to my father's house." He is especially ginger when he lowers himself into the seat.
"Josse, please, as the old days. We're not in services here, unless you're really desperate." The septon settles back down once his company's found a seat. "I don't think there are many of us right now thinking 'this is just how I wanted to get here'. But it is what it is, and for a few minutes I hope you'll forgive me for not focusing in right on the doom and gloom. How have you been?"
Seated, Jacsen waves a hand at that last bit from Josse's lips. "Forgive? There's nothing for it," he assures the man. "I'd rather a spell where I need not dwell on it. Especially after last evening's events." One hand remains lightly wrapped about the midst of his cane, keeping it near, while the other runs through his never quite orderly hair. "I've been… well," he decides, when he finally gets about to answering the question, "Lord Mallister has seemed to find my service useful, and so my station has reflected it. Now with all this recent business…" He waves his free hand once more. "And you? You seem well, Josse."
"Filling shoes I am rather unused to," Josse admits. Shoes, or rather a belt if one wants to be literal. "Perhaps you have an inkling what I mean. Seems we have a sense of timing between us; I was away myself for a few years. Studying the herbs and medicines up in the plains north of here. It was…quiet." That's both a twinge of humor and wistfulness at the same time. "Our Lord Mallister is well, then?"
Jacsen dips his chin in agreement. "Exceedingly so. The war against Mad King Aerys did not touch the lands of Seaguard in any meaningful way save to drain it of sell swords and a few knights," he remarks, "And the Ironborn have sat more or less dormant for long years now. Peace suits Seaguard, and Lord Mallister, leaving his court a place for ambitious ideas and idealistic minds, rather than a place where one scrapes for survival."
Josse smiles a little. "That's good to hear. I never need look far to remember why Terrick bends the knee to such a House." His blue eyes briefly study the face of the Lord he hasn't seen in so long. "And you, Lord Jacsen? What has this peace made of you?"
"For now, it seems… advisor, and fixer of messes," Jacsen responds with a short chuckle, the meaning of that surely not lost on a man that attended beside the Terrick brothers last evening. "Not so different than what I was before, I suppose. A faithful son, a man who wishes to be of service to those he can believe in, be they called Jerold Terrick or Jason Mallister, Hoster Tully or Robert Baratheon." He shrugs lightly, and adds, "It is simply the methods that have had to change."
"Indeed," Josse replies to that, in a quieter voice. "And Seven bless you for it. I don't like to see this House in conflict, even less when it's within itself. There's no strength to be lent to the outer world without a unified face to show it."
Jacsen's brow rises archly at those words from the Septon's mouth, whilst the lord's unencumbered hand finds a perch against the back of his neck. "You've a sense of strife within this House, Josse?" he asks, a genuine concern there in his voice, though it is not of the rash sort. "For all that I might not wish to hear of it, I'll always ask that you share such with me if you can."
"I don't mean to alarm you," Josse shakes his head to punctuate that. "I only speak from what I've seen the last few days, my concerns for Lord Jaremy and whomever else might be aware of what's gone on lately. Strife isn't really the word, more that…" He scratches the shell of his ear as he looks for what he means to say. "…I don't want internal trust in him to falter. Does that make sense?"
A slow exhale precedes any words Jacsen might offer on that, his head tilting back in the chair that he might stare at the ceiling. "Seven know that he is no perfect lord, and even mayhap far from it," he observes, chest rising and falling with his deep, deliberate breaths. "But he is still my brother, and that is enough to swear me to his service." He levels his blue eyes in Josse's direction again, adding, "Whether he likes it or not, Jaremy is stuck with me. Much like he is stuck with Jarod. And Lucienne. I don't believe there is one amongst us who would say differently."
Josse nods a few times to that. His hand abandons his ear and provides a shelf for his cheek, elbow settling on his chair arm. "That's my prayer, yes. So that all may see that and take heart from it. And rest assured you have my support when it comes to outside these walls…the pulse that beats out there." His chin makes a small motion towards the window and the rest of the Roost far beyond.
"Well, let us all hope your prayers are heard most clearly, as one might think is warranted." Jascen settles his hand across the arm of his chair, and lets out another breath. "Yet I tell you true, Josse, that my lord brother will need begin heeding what counsel his siblings think to provide. Lest he make himself known for something beyond his clear love for his people, his justness and his honor." His gaze tracks to the window the Septon motions to, and he adds, "I would be glad, whenever you think it pertinent, to hear of such pulse that beats, Josse."
"Then you will be who I come to when it bounds, Lord Jacsen." Josse smiles a little, shifting the muscles rested against his closed hand. "And Seven bless you for listening. Have you been able to hear how Lord Jaremy is, today?"
He shakes his head at that. "No, I've had not sight or word of my dear brother this day," Jacsen concedes, "Though I imagine him somewhat wroth for the dressing father delivered him. Why? Do you have some notion of it? Or aught I can do?"
"No…to be honest, I asked you because I harbored the same questions." Josse settles back in his chair, letting his back slouch a little in the creaking seat. "I'd hoped to speak to him before we were off to look into the troubles with Amelia, but I've no inkling of his temperature."
He waves an open hand. "I'm afraid then I'll be of little use in that. Perhaps a note sent to Lady Anais, to inquire after the same? She is of a keen mind, keen enough I'll wager to understand your intentions without the need to be blunt," Jacsen observes, "And smart enough to wish to assist you."
"I don't know the Lady terribly well," Josse says, thoughtfully. "But you are right, and perhaps the time is at hand to make better acquaintance. The first time I met her was in the stables…just after I'd tripped and gone nearly face-first into horse dung." He smiles wryly. "I'll have to pray first impressions aren't held too tightly, because I do honestly make an effort not to be full of shit."
Jacsen cannot help but throw back his head and laugh at that, his shoulders shaking with the laughter. "Better for the lot of us, I'm sure." His laughter subsides, but only after a few moments, and some shaking of his head. "You'd do well to know her better, she seems a good sort. A very good match for Jaremy, and like as not one day a lighter hand that he will have occasion to use in his rule."
Josse's smile at Jacsen's laughter shows a flash of teeth, a rarity for the outwardly reserved young man. He chuckles softly and nods. "She seemed most pleasant." An approving tone makes up for lukewarm wording. "And gracious in the presence of Lord Ryker that day, which I was glad to see."
He nods with a touch of approval in his tone. "We could have not asked for much more in the woman herself, that we seem to have received," Jacsen determines. "I should hope to be so fortunate myself." He smirks, and using the leverage of his cane, begins to draw himself up to his feet.
"I'll add that to my prayers," Josse smirks in return. He sets his hands on the chair arms, standing as Jacsen does. "A book to take with you, Lord Jacsen? I know you likely haven't much time to read, but you're welcome to them. Regretfully, the 'Limericks on Dornish women' has already been filched." That's completely deadpan.
"Dornish women…" Jacsen's smile quirks unexpectedly at that, and he shakes his head. "Funny you should mention that…" He lets out a slow breath and takes a glance about the books strewn about, leaning his weight upon his cane. "Would you care to make an erudite suggestion?" he invites, grinning lightly.
"Erudite?" Josse snorts softly. "I'm about as erudite as a pigeon, and don't wear gray half as well." He scratches his chin, quirking a brow at the shelves he's gutted in the mission to catalogue Jerold's books and papers. "But given your particular way…" He steps out from behind his chair and crouches down at a stack of books sitting on the floor, running his finger down the spines until one slightly dusty tome is selected. The title becomes visible when he holds it out to the young Lord: 'The Architecture of Diplomacy'. "It isn't half as dry as it sounds. If I'd trust anyone to read as it should be read, it's you."
Jacsen leans forward and receives the book with his unencumbered hand, turning it over once and giving the spine a momentary inspection. "I shall endeavor to read it well, Josse," he assures the Septon, his smile resuming. "And make my progress something of a reason to haunt your steps. Thank you."
Josse smiles a little. "It's your Lord Father's book. Perhaps he too would like to hear what wisdom you wring from it, one day." He bows his head to Jacsen, fairly casual but still — the respect is there. "Seven keep you. I'll see you again soon."