|Summary:||The Nayland family (and questionable in-laws) meet to discuss their dramas both private and public. Sex! Yelling! Maybe murder! Oysters!|
|Grand Hall — Fortress of the Sevens|
|The Grand Hall is furnished as one may expect for a family that has funneled their treasury towards more practical uses, though the room is certainly deserving of the name. This massive hall is large enough to host a feast for more than one hundred people and still seats the Lord's throne at the head of the room upon a dais. Black iron hangers hold a pair of silver, candle-lit chandeliers in a line from the main doors to the throne. Two doors lead off near the throne, one on each side of the head of the room while a spiral staircase has been built into the wall on one side by an armored door.|
|Tue May 29, 289|
The Grand Hall is almost silent, servants banished from the room to allow privacy for the family thus gathered, the meal only laid out for those nobles in attendance to serve themselves rather than be waited on. Quiet words have even seen that they are not disturbed, guards posted outside the hall rather than in it. Beer is here, as is wine, as is a pitcher of watered wine that Roslyn has likely secured at least for herself. She certainly has her customs, here in the Mire, and a familiarity with their stores and servants even if the past few weeks have seen her away from it. "We thought it appropriate to meet, given the rare coincidence of all of us in a single place, to discuss our plans now," she begins, quiet but firm as if her tone could keep control before they've properly started.
Riordan sits next to his sister, a single tankard of bitter Mire beer all that is before him. He kept the other seat beside him for his cousin Jocelyn, should she choose. When the others started to arrive, he had been leaning over to converse quietly with his sister, but now simply contents himself with silence, and meeting the gaze of any with warmth and good cheer. Whatever has happened, all here are family, and so at least for now, nothing seems to break those bonds, at least in Riordan's mind and manner.
Jarod enters into the Nayland family gathering on Rowenna's arm. With more than a trace of discomfort. He shifts a look around the table. More than a few are probably uncomfortable having him about as well, so it'll balance. "Defend me if they try and cut my head off, will you?" he asks Row in a wry undertone. He's mostly joking. Mostly. At least 85 percent joke right there.
"Which one?" responds Rowenna, sotto voce. Then smirking, "Never mind. I like them both. Will do." Mmm. Beer. Rowenna helps herself to a tankard of the dark, bitter stuff. She hasn't taken wine in almost a year, now, and may never again. "Yes, let's discuss our nefarious Nayland plans," she agrees with a big, winsome smile. "I have to admit, I've always wondered what went on at these things."
Rafferdy has sat at the seat farthest from Riordan. He has a mug of beer in front of him, but it's untouched. His plate is empty, he just isn't hungry. In his hand is a crossbow bolt, about four inches long, and he absently fidgets with it, rolling it through his fingers.
Leaning over to pour herself a glass of wine, Jocelyn looks up as each person arrives into the room. A small smile is on her lips to greet them all. When her glass is filled she steps back over to her seat that has been saved for her, settling down next to Riordan and remaining quiet as she sits there. Briefly her eyes drift to Rowenna and Jarod, snickering just a little into her glass of wine before drinking.
Hazel eyes draw on Rowenna, all cool blues and swirling green where Roslyn offers only a simple smile and says politely, "Hardly anything nefarious, but it is easy to imagine so, I suppose." She draws a breath, looking towards Rafferdy for a moment and nodding her welcome. "There is, of course, the matter of the Terricks and whatever alliance we may forge. Have you thought on whether Rutger should make further negotiations at the Roost if they are necessary, while you attend to Stonebridge, Riordan?" she questions carefully.
Jarod gets seats for them reasonably close to Riordan, for his part. And a beer. "My Lord Regent," he offers to Riordan. He even wore his green-and-orange sash at his swordbelt. "My ladies. My lords." To Rowenna he mutters a dry, "I always heard animal sacrifices. Guess it's a good thing we got plenty of frogs." More seriously. "We'll find out." When negotiations with the Roost are broached, "If I could speak, my Lady Roslyn? Having some knowledge of Lord Jerold."
"That will be up to father," Riordan says, at Roslyn's question. "He is the one who gave me the status of envoy, so he will need to be the one to gift it to Rutger if that is his decision." He pauses, pursing his lips in thought, as he gazes at the others, even Rafferdy, with an open look inviting opinions. "Personally, I think it might be best for me to continue. We are still on rocky ground, and a change in the negotiations so early… but you are also right in that I need to attend to matters in Stonebridge as well." And then, when Jarod speaks, he falls silent, waiting to hear what his goodbrother has to say.
"I say more marriages," says Rowenna, offering her view on Terrick-Nayland diplomacy. "We can hardly help but get along if we're all fucking."
"Of course, ser. Your input would be invaluable to this process, I believe," Roslyn replies with smooth warmth and easy politeness. She even smiles, invitingly, at her goodbrother to speak. She adds, to Riordan, "But your word would influence what father decides, of course." Her brow curves upwards in a silent, passive gesture at her sister. "Thank you very much for such a succinct," and unhelpful, her tone implies, "opinion, sister."
"I think Lord Rutger, though I'm sure an impeccable courtier, would be the wrong man to approach my lord father with," Jarod says, trying to sit up straight. Mind his slouching, all that. "I'm sure he's a man of honor and a skilled knight and warrior but…well. Everyone here knows the rumors that surround him. I'll not do you the insult of repeating them but…" Shrug. "…Lord Jerold holds reputation and chivalrous honor very high, and Ser Riordan is precisely the sort of man he most respects. A both polished and bloodied knight, chivalrous but not precisely courtly or politic, who's already shown himself open to meeting in good honor and built some bridges with the Lord of the Roost. I think…if there's to be any change with who's meeting with my lord father, Lord Rutger would not be my suggestion. You might do better for it, my lady." An inclination of his head to Roslyn. "Lord Riordan's duties hold him too much in Stonebridge. Though I hope they shall not, because as I said I think him best suited for talks with these particular men. Perhaps even if he is able to continue you could come along with him to umm…make things even smoother." And probably other wife-of-his-brother related reasons he totally will not say. Rowenna's words draw a grin. He might tap his foot with hers under the table, once all the serious stuff is said. He just might.
Rowenna drinks, making herself comfortable in her seat at the table. "You scoff," she says to her sister, "but genius is seldom recognized in its own time." Then she gives her attention to Jarod, rather politely — and might hide dimples in her beer when she nudges him back.
"Though admittedly I am not without my own rumors these days," Riordan points out to Jarod. But that is all he adds, falling silent to sip from his mire beer and listen to the thoughts of others. Though his younger sister, Rowenna, certainly draws a few smirks and something vaguely resembling a chuckle.
Rafferdy continues to just roll the bolt between his fingers, like a disinterested kid at the grown up table.
"If you have any such ideas on how to arrange more fucking, appropriately, I am keen to listen, Rowenna," Roslyn replies in measured turns before returning her attention more thoughtfully to her sister's husband. She inclines a chin in thoughtful agreement. "I would wish that our lord father would allow me to continue negotiations, but it is unlikely even if Riordan were needed more in Stonebridge." A pause. "And what do you think your lord father would say if we pressed the match for strictly between your brother Lord Justin and myself, ser? Especially if Lord Justin is truly taken with me."
"I think he'd more amenable to that than most any other match available, actually," Jarod says, without hesitation, as to joining Justin and Roslyn. "It's some honor, from your house, a daughter from the main line. And perhaps the best to yours, with Lord Justin now second in line to inherit the Roost. I think he worked out that 'daughter of his choice, son of yours' in large part in case my brother objected. To spare you insult. But he has not, my lady, Lord Justin seems to find you quite comely and charming. Why, he told me himself he was most taken, not only with your beauty, but with the way you carried yourself with such composure during what must've been a stressful visit to the Roost." If he's exaggerating even a little bit, it does not show. He smiles bright at her. "And he likely wished to suss out what your own lord father thought of the situation. But seems about the best to come out of the situation, to my mind, and I can't see any reason he'd see differently." He might smirk some at Riordan, but apparently whatever rumors now swirl around the man, he's still preferable to the guy who might be a strangler.
"Raw oysters?" ventures Rowenna. She blinks a few times, however, when Roslyn brings up Justin. "Or that," she says, though she makes a bit of a face.
Riordan takes a few long sips of his beloved Mire beer, glancing aside to his silent Cousin, before turning back to the conversation at hand. "I find it likely that our Lord Father will be willing to go forward if the match is plainly made to be between Roslyn, and the Lord Justin." He pauses, thoughtful, before saying, "If he should agree, and still wishes me to carry out the negotiations, then Roslyn and I will return to the Roost after I've looked after some matters in Stonebridge." He pauses, glancing around, especially to Jocelyn and Rafferdy, who have thus far held their peace. "Does anyone else have a suggestion they would like to add on this matter? That is not oyster related." This last said with a wink to Rowenna.
Leaning back in her chair, Jocelyns hands fold together in her lap with her elbows on the arm rests. She glances between the ones speaking, listening carefully to the going ons around her. Even the little snips between Rowenna and Roslyn, though she contains any snicker at this time, keeping herself composed. When her cousin turns to look at her she simple raises her brows, as if considering something, but then decides to shake her head, making no comment.
Rowenna's words evoke a smile from Roslyn for a moment, a long look shot towards her sister before she remembers herself. "I think, perhaps, if we truly wish to secure an alliance firmly, we may also look into cousins to marry to our own," she adds with a look to Jocelyn, but then she shakes her head. "Suggestions of dowry and further details will have to wait, likely, until we have spoken more to both our lord father and Lord Terrick." She pauses, looking to Rafferdy himself, before looking towards Rowenna and Jarod. "Speaking of our lord father, I would like to tell him something else to explain the behavior at the Frey's feast, if you will all allow me to."
Jarod takes a drink of his beer, before reaching over to take Rowenna's hand. He says nothing, though he's suddenly rather tight-jawed. "That is for she whom I love to decide, I think."
Rafferdy continues to just stare off at one of the tapestries on the wall, flipping the crossbow bolt between his fingers without a peep.
Rowenna grimaces and rakes a hand through her hair. "I — am sorry about that. All of you." She looks around the table, meeting each Nayland's eyes, and last of all her husband. She takes a breath, going on to Roslyn, "I think — whatever you think is best. Just let me know the party line."
"I'll not lie to our father about that," Riordan says, simply, in response to Roslyn's suggestion. "However, I think that all of us, who have issues or apologies or whatever else to bring forward to our father, do it in our own way in private. If father asks me of it, I plan on deferring to Rafferdy and Rowenna, if he'll allow me to. But I will not be party to decieving him, either." He gives Roslyn a look that holds a fair ammount of meeting, but then turns back to Rowenna, meeting her eyes, and simply giving his sister a mute nod, and after a moment, a small smile.
"Then you would have him even think of Rowenna that way, Riordan? You would have him even consider the idea, and not consider sparing your sister that?" Roslyn murmurs slowly, carefully, not even looking towards the brother she steals her words partly from. "I would rather we not have it go further than it already has, this whole nonsense." She even, even, offers a softer look towards her sister, somewhat apology for making her business family discussion.
Rowenna leans across and squints at Riordan, then licks her thumb and tries to rub his nose, like she's getting a smudge of dirt. "Y'know… after all these years, I don't think the brown's coming off." She catches Roslyn's look and shakes her head, though her own look softens for her sister. "I appreciate it, Lynnie, but — let's face it, I lived like a man for a long, long time. People just kind of assume, already, that I loved like a man. Whether it's true or not? I doubt it's going to shock the Old Man that it's being said."
"It's not like people don't talk about it anyway, those who remember she squired to the Oldstones," Jarod mutters. Keeping hold of Rowenna's hand, but not looking at her. Or anyone else for that matter. "He might think it to, for all you know. If he's not brought it up before now, can't be any worse than how he's reacted to everything else. He'll not want it spread and at least she was…well. It's a justifiable reason to hit somebody, I figure."
"If there's a rumor, even one so blatantly a lie, about our family, it will get back to our father in time, if it has not already. We all know that. Better by far he hear it from his own children, so he can know the truth of it before the lies try to take hold in his mind and his heart," Riordan says, and though his words are largely said in response to Roslyn, it is to Rowenna he looks. He smirks at her comment and her touch, but seems not to take any insult from either. "Father loves you, Rowenna, as I do, as we all do. I think he has shown that well, in these past weeks. He will not doubt you if you just tell him the truth." Riordan seems openly, utterly, and completely sure of this fact, as it has always worked for him when dealing with their father.
As Rowena mentions cousins marrying to secure an alliance, Jocelyn looks to her, question in her eyes, especially since she was looked at. But when the subject moves on, she keeps her question inward and listens more. More than likely the questions were answered if you listened long enough.
"But only if we believe this rumor would return to him, Riordan. I have faith that Rafferdy can keep it from spreading farther, and he has only spoken it to a single other person," Roslyn says neutrally, nodding firmly to Rafferdy before looking towards Riordan. Her gaze only lingers for a moment, shaking her head in a small gesture, before she looks away into her watered wine. "Fine, then. If he asks, tell him whatever you wish."
"I appreciate the thought, Lynnie. I do," says Rowenna, smiling faintly at her sister. "It's just — Raff didn't exactly have to stretch far to come the the conclusion he did. People think I was spreading my legs for Jarod when I was his squire, why wouldn't I have for Gedeon? Hey, and for Lord Mallister, too — he did give me a nice set of armor." She shrugs. "People hate the fact that I'm a woman and accomplished what I did — if they can turn any and all of it ugly and worthless, they will. I've always known that."
"A single other person!?!" Riordan says, blatant astonishment on his face as he looks first to Roslyn, then silent Rafferdy, then back to his sister. "When he spoke to me, all in pride for his accomplishment, he touted how his target was Lord Blackwood, to be sure. But did he mention how he got the rumor, the lie there? Blackwood's servants. Plural. Servants. As in, the source of all gossip in the Seven Kingdoms! You are damn right I believe it'll get back to father." He bites off anything else he might say, trying to push down the annoyance in his expression as he holds out his hand to forestall rebutal. "This is getting us nowhere. Let's just move on. Rafferdy and Rowenna can sort it out with father. It need not be a topic for the rest of us." He shakes his head, moving to take a sip of his beer before he himself tries to redirect the conversation. "Enough of the past and personal matters. Where do we go from here, besides the seeking of alliances?"
Rafferdy drops the bolt into his beer mug and pushes his chair back, rising. Without a word, he turns and walks to the door to go.
Jarod looks up. Watches Rafferdy go. Looks between Riordan and Roslyn, then finally to Rowenna. "Lies tend to be worse when you try and…lie more, I've come to find. Rowenna is willing to face her lord father with this and I'm willing to bear it with her. I've no more to say on it."
Jocelyn noticably jumps when Rafferfy drops the bolt into his beer. Blinking, she stares after him as he gets up and starts to leave.
Roslyn's jaw tightens as her teeth press together, a slight twitch of the muscle there as her gaze lifts to follow Rafferdy from the hall. She does not look towards Riordan, but her silence says measures. Instead, she nods, a simple gesture. "There is the Stonebridge matter," she speaks towards the door.
"Righto, moving on," Rowenna agrees. "More beer, anyone?" She'll be having more beer, and gives Jarod's hand a tight squeeze before rising to pour.
Riordan definately wants more beer, judging by his sigh and the placement of his mostly empty mug. Shooting Rowenna a grateful smile, after studying Roslyn's profile for a minute, he finally asks, "Well, aside from the alliances we need to build to further secure our hold and rebuild our reputation in the eyes of the Lord Paramount, what else is there?"
And for the first time since the meeting, Jocelyn speaks up, drawing her eyes away from the departed Rafferdy, "Will not the alliances be what rebuilds our reputation?"
"Could do with a beer," Jarod says, offering Rowenna a half-smile. And mouthing 'Love you' while he's at it. On the subject of Stonebridge, he says nothing immediately. He listens real close, though.
"What of the lady herself? Have you asked after who actually performed this wedding ceremony?" Roslyn questions of Riordan without looking towards her brother, her own fingers only twisting her watered wine without sipping from it. "There has to be something we can do, rather than sitting on our hands and waiting on word from the High Septon or the Lord Westerling to pay attention to us."
"That was my meaning, yes," Riordan answers Jocelyn, giving her a small smile and a nod at her query. "The Terricks one will go the longest, especially in regards to reputation. Not only does it secure our borders, strengthen us, and prevent us from a potential quarrel on multiple fronts, but it brings the weight of the Terricks, and possibly even the Mallisters to the table with the Old Fish. And as both their words count for much their, that is important. In addition, we're on good terms with the Erenfords, and could well do with strengthing that alliance. The Haighs, as well, would benefit greatly. Ser Rygar suggested both their heirs as potential matches, either for Roslyn, or one of our cousins." And here there is a significant glance to Jocelyn. "And, then there are the Charltons. Though it is a strong suspicion they they either have, or will, fit Danae with puppets strings… we might prosper from trying to sway them. After all, they are loyal Frey bannermen, and Isolde has Frey blood. More then that, Charlton's heir is a dear friend, and his sister is our guest right now. We have more oppurtunity then ever to forge strong alliances to help our claim, and leave Lady Danae in the cold." Then, looking to Roslyn, he shakes his head. "That is one of the matters I need to check in on when we get back to Stonebridge. It was still being investigated when I was last there," he says, on the matter of the ceremony itself. And, to his credit, there is the only lightest of twinges in his expression when speaking of such subjects.
Nothing says 'I love you, too' quite like a full and frothy mug of beer — so Rowenna fetches one for Jarod when she refills her own. Having served up the love, she reclaims her seat beside him. She has nothing to offer on the subject of Lady Danae, it seems.
There's something in what Roslyn says that gets Jarod's head up. He sucks in a cheek, thoughtful, then nods. "Few septons'll perform a marriage between nobles without their fathers' permission. Knowing it can just be annulled, and there'll be repercussions if they don't. Was hard enough to find someone to do it for Rowenna and I. And me a bastard and her disowned at the time, so we could claim we didn't count." He adds very quickly, "And thank you all very much for respecting our love. Anyhow…Ser Gedeon was less than respectful of the proper way of going about things. I can see him doing it less-than-neat. Just hoping nobody'd think to call him wrong until it was over and done with."
"Then perhaps this is why you should stay in Stonebridge to look into the matter," Roslyn says, only slightly sharp, to her brother at his admitting to such. "If it is less than neat, then it is something to press on, and if there are few that would perform it, there is less to investigate."
Riordan murmurs a single, muffled word to his sister, his own expression muted but a bit sharp as well. Then he continues, nodding to Jarod, "Well, then that gives us hope. I would rather see the matter ended quickly, to save all parties involved further suffering." He glances over to Rowenna, then, and though he doesn't speak, his gaze is considering, and perhaps holding an unspoken query.
"What do I need to do? Who do I need to befriend?" Jocelyn asks of Riordan, she looks like she wants desperately to help in someway and searching for a way to do it. She's listened long enough.
Rowenna drinks her beer. It's damn good beer.
Jarod falls quiet once he's spoken, and does some drinking of his own. He does not look at Rowenna, for his part. He says simply, with a shrug to Riordan, "It never ends clean as you'd like, my fair goodbrother, hard as you try. You've a right to the claim, though. Just remember that."
Roslyn shakes her head, a flat, quick gesture to whatever Riordan whispers to her ear. Her fingers twist her glass further, her lips tightening for a moment. "We must find out what steps Valda has taken, and what she is doing. I do not trust her, and she has already shown herself willing to use our family as pawns," she says quietly, to—Jarod. Hi, Jarod.
Late, but such is the times of those esconced in the Mire. A bit of mud seems to cling to Rutger's riding clothes, but he is here, finally, and a small cloud of irate seems to hang over the poor man like a mini shroud. Though, not as stylish. A sigh though as he passes into the main room, already moving to rip the jerkin free from his torso, as his squire follows behind. "Room, Lucamore!" barked as it seems the Lord has realized he is indeed late. So muddy jerkin and squire flee, before the Lord Nayland is looking at the assembled Nayland, specially Roslyn.
"Surely the ferry man being drunk and keeping me is not the cause of this sourness?"
The Naylands, most of Rickart's brood, minus Rafferdy and Raymond, who is of course still squiring in the south, are gathered in the great hall, alone. No servants, and outside, guards bar the presence of all but Naylands. Also present is Ser Jarod, and of course Jocelyn, Rygar's sister. Riordan, currently seated between Roslyn and Jocelyn, looks to the latter. "Everyone, for right now. We can not have too many friends right now. I know little of the Haighs and Erenfords personally myself… and as I recall, your lady mother is an Erenford, cousin. Perhaps that might be a good starting point." Then, he turns, nodding to Jarod, and then to Roslyn. When Rutger enters, he just grins, albeit with little spirit right now, but genuine nonetheless.
Her attention is transfered to Rutger as he enters the room, taking in her cousin from a distance before he gets closer to the rest. She offers a soft smiled greeting before she turns back to Riordan and listens to his words. Nodding slowly, "I shall do my best." she murmurs.
"Lady Valda is a Frey daughter, and worked her entire life to put Stonebridge on its knee to the Twins, even hiding her late husband's will from the Terricks. Which was the only document where Lord Geoffrey wrote his wish and my brother Jaremy wed Lady Isolde. Legal and sealed, but it mattered little to her until she used it at Riverrun to try and discredit Ser Gedeon." Jarod looks up at Roslyn. "I think you very wise, my lady, not to trust her. There is no one on this earth I trust less, and she will only be your friend so long as it serves her ends."
Eyes slide back over toward Jarod. "Yes, because Lord Geffory had time to write a fucking will after the battle. I am surprised you believe that cock and shit story, Half Eagle." Oh poor Jarod. Rutger arrives and it is immediately teeth out. Still eyes slide back as Rowenna for a moment before he is clearing his throat. "Still whatever your reason for not trusting her, we have our own. I do not trust her, because she is canny and she has proven to try and drive a wedge between us." simple at that. " And I still say we cannot let her be in a place of influence over any heirs or such." hand waved for a moment. "Now-someone fill me in on what I have missed, so I can properly tar the bastard at the ferry for it in the morning.."
"Rutger," Roslyn hisses immediately, frustration barely restrained on her single word. She nods tightly to a chair to invite him to sit, even as she takes a moment to respond, neutrally, "No, you have not caused any sourness, yet, brother." Her hands fold together, and she glances to Rutger and then Jarod. "Then what do we know of what she is currently planning? And what do we do with her? Have we thought further about sending her here for some time?"
"I speak of the will Lady Valda and the Naylands presented at Riverrun, my lord," Jarod replies to Rutger, very mildly. "To refute Ser Gedeon's letters." Of those letters, he says nothing.
"Discussing who should speak further with Terrick should father wish to pursue with the Alliance, but in the end it'll be up to father, whether he wishes to have me keep my envoy status, or give it to you," Riordan says, beginning to sum up for Rutger. "Briefly touched on the incident at the twins and the cause, which is something for Rowenna and Rafferdy to discuss with father, in the end, and should be left alone… Rafferdy left at that, in part because I lost my temper. I'll apologize to him later." This largely directed at Roslyn, "Then discussing plans for alliances and such to hold Stonebridge and further our cause, as well as looking to find out the specifics as to the Lady Danae's marriage, which of which investigation should hopefully yield fruit when I return to Stonebridge after talking to father." Beat. "And now this," he says, largely gesturing between Jarod and Rutger.
"As to the lady Valda," Riordan ammends, "Rygar and I will be speaking on it, and we should be finding a suitable solution."
"Oh that will." Rutger states for a moment. "Here I thought you were holding the letters. My mistake Half Eagle. Continue." Rutger allows with a faint grin, before he is looking over towards Riordan. "Ah the Twins. I wonder brother-though you did apologize to me…I shall not lie about this-I was angrered to know that they did indeed come to blows infront of our overlords…And I have to say, when you apologized, I did not readily accept-Now that doesn't mean I won't. But I do want to touch back on things, since our how family is here.." And apparently Rutger wants to browbeat everyone. Still he is reaching for the chair and moving to sit down, by Roslyn.
"Now, Jarod, is it?" Yes Rutger is being a jerk as slight apologetic look to his goodbastard. "If you don't mind, I would like us to rewind, briefly…" Oh dear.
"Half-Eagle does me just fine, my lord," Jarod replies to Rutger with a smirk. He even seems to half-prefer it. He takes a drink of beer before settling in for the brow-beating.
Jocelyn smirks at Rutger and leans back in her chair once more. Its time to sit back to listen and learn again. Picking up her wine she looks interestedly at Rutger.
Riordan simply nods, in silence, to Rutger, content to drink his beer and not talk as much right now.
There is a brief smile given to Riordan. "I know this has been stressed beyond the breaking point. But I shall continue to stress. What happened at the Twins was an utter fuck up." And there He levels his gaze at his brother. "And it was done so, because someone did not wait to take action as he was asked. There is a reason we play cyvasse, Riordan. Every piece has a movement and is dangerous in their own right. But one piece does not take a whole battlefield. And when you make too many moves without support your game falls to utter shit." And hands grip at his chair for a moment before he is looking for some servant hiding along the walls. "BEER." ordered before he turns back to his brother. "You were supposed to wait before confronting or talking to anyone about that whole rumored fuck mess, until Roslyn smoothed the sheets, as it were? But, did you wait- I think we saw the answer to that."
A glance to Jarod As Rutger continues. "My pardons, but when your wife and my sister attacked our youngest without so much a thought, It really utterly fucked the work and good sight we had put on at the Twins. And The reason I cannot forgive right now. At least while I am talking, is that Because of it-that dust up? It perhaps added ammunition for the family I am trying to court- and give them reason enough to play up my detractions. So thank you for that. I also will not apologize because I had to go and talk to the Freys and give our apology." A pause and he looks back towards Riordan. "Can you think, Brother-why that would be horrible for me?" He will allow time to process this.
Roslyn's anger only grows as Rutger speaks, a hard knot in her throat and a sharpness in usually soft, hazel eyes. "How are you helping, currently, Rutger?" Before she waits for an answer, she is moving on to accuse sharply, "We are not here to point fingers, but to plan where we move from here. If any of you do not wish to do that, then follow Rafferdy's example." She looks around the table.
Jarod grew up in the Roost, as Lord Jerold Terrick's son - and Lady Evangeline Middleton's stepson. So he's moderately good at sitting still and looking contrite about things he might not - precisely - feel sorry for. He exchanges a look with Rowenna and channels shame. Lots of shame.
"Since I already brought it up the other day, brother, you know I can think of why," Riordan points out, quietly, simply. There is no other response beyond that, no repeating of his apologies. He seems to be spent on annoyance, anger, or whatever else for the evening. Or else saving the rest for what has yet to be brought up. The only other thing he does is, discreetly and under the table, he places a hand in Roslyn's, if she will allow.
"I haven't even come to helping yet, Sister. But, since we are here, before I can get there, allow me to get my grievance out of the way. Believe me, I have been mulling over this for some time." And if time allows there will be feats of strength, and other acts worthy of this time. Still Rutger raises one finger in Roslyn's direction. "Besides, I don't run, when I have my dander right and cooked. We will get this out, or we'll never get on our right path."
There a sniff and Rutger stares at his younger brother. "Then, I won't go into detail why I first thought about strangling you in your damned sleep.." His jaw tightens and there he stands. "So, we must make up ground on all fronts for that. And we must make sacrifices, as I have long learned and practiced." Whatever that means. Still Rutger looks over to Roslyn. "You want to know how we deal with Stonebridge? We either bring Lady Danae into our fold, expose her for a whore and charlaton, or we take her out of the equation. I will not lie, but part of me feels as if the seven have rolled the stone against us in this case, for as soon as we overcome one obstacle another creeps up. So we need to stick our kindness and compassion to the sticking place, and do what we need to do to keep our city. If her marriage cannot be annulled and found fraudulent, then we should all be serious and see that the gods judgement on the bastard's house stays put." A pause there. "By any and all means."
And now Rutger moves for the wine himself. "Also. Is Lady Charlton still here?"
When Rutger speaks of 'taking Danae out of the equation,' Jarod stands. "This is why I said he's the wrong man to deal with my lord father," he says, rather pointedly to Riordan and Roslyn. "Because any man who would speak so casually - however politely - of murder against a woman who might be pregnant is no man who should be treating with my blood. Have you any further need of me, Lord Riordan? This talk is honorless, and concerns black murder of a woman you claim to love. And for the oath I gave you I shall no speak of it outside these walls, but I shall not take part in it." He's doing with the shame-faking, apparently.
Drinking her wine silent, Jocelyn does her best to play the part of Mute it seems. The ranting starts and she stares at Rutger. Only briefly does she allow her eyes to drift to the others that his ranting is directed towards.
The temper that had been threatening to burst well-constructed walls suddenly recedes, those walls holding back the outburst for another spectacular time as Lady Roslyn—simply gives up. There is no other way to put it as a breath escapes from her lips and her shoulders droop slightly. Her fingers pat distractedly against Riordan's and she nods dismissal to Jarod, though she says, "You make assumptions, ser goodbrother. My brother never said murder, and we would not wish it. There are many ways to remove a woman from an equation without murder." That is just the most convenient.
"Ser Rygar is handling the investigation into the matter of her marriage, and there is every expectation that we can get it annulled and put the matter to bed. Anything more extreme then that will do us more harm then good. Better by far to also leave her out in the cold by taking any alliances she would make," Riordan says, quietly, his jaw clenching slightly. But he does not actually seem surprised by Rutger's words, having heard it before. If anything, he just seems tired. Wearily, he waves his hand at Jarod in agreement with his request. "Of course, Ser Jarod," he says, simply. "We will talk later." Then, turning back to Rutger, he nods. "Yes, Ser Andrey's little sister. Ser Andrey wished to participate in my nameday celebration, but his duties kept him. His sister came in his stead." Rutger is likely aware that both Rio and Andrey squired together under Lord Whent at Harrenhal, so Rio doesn't explain further then that as to Alys' presence.
And there is a laugh from Rutger, as he looks back over towards Jarod. "Ser. You are family, so I will allow that one once. But, when I propose murder, black hearted murder. Then you will be amongst the first to recognize it. Because I will say it plainly and pointedly, that We should kill her. Ask my brother, and he will state that I do not flinch from hard truths or words. But, we are not even close to degrading our situation yet." A pause for a moment before he is drinking some wine. "As for who should treat with your father. I think we should go with the one who is less likely to stick his cock in your brother's wife. Jacsen's wife." And there he looks to Riordan, and angles a hand to her. "Don't complain- Rumors have you pinned to her skirts, and people are already watching." And there he holds that finger, no more wagging of fingers. "We can touch on that soon enough. As for Lady Alys. We should see what she knows of Stonebridge as it accounts to her family's interests. If you will all remember, Lady Danae has recently garnered some rather fine sellswords. And with Lord Keegan having arrived before with his chair..I fear there may be some treachery on their part. I have no hard proof, but rumor and such." A glance to Jarod there, as now it seems everything is back on track.
"Your sly courtier bullshit would kill any chance of an alliance with the Roost, my lord, and probably make our feud far worse," Jarod says. Though he seems to have come down, some, from flailing about honor and murder. "My own suggestion was Lady Roslyn. Though Lord Jerold does like Ser Riordan, so if he could go along with her in the future, I think that'd be the best course."
"Rutger," is gritted through Roslyn's teeth, her head actually dropping to the table for a moment to moosh her forehead against it before she looks up again and takes up her glass. "Don't," is what she says to Riordan, though, rather than trying to control Rutger. "We will look into the Charlton's, surely."
Far from looking about ready to complain or protest or yell or throw things, Riordan simply smirks at Rutger, before his expression turns a bit more serious. "You've a fair point, but so does Jarod, as has Roslyn previously in regards to me seeing to my other duties. For myself, I will abide by whatever decision Father sets down regarding whoever shall be his envoy - and, just so it is clear, if he does decide to send me, I intend to take Roslyn with me, so that she can win Terrick over. I would advise the same of you, brother, if you are sent. And if she is sent to negotiate her own marriage, however unlikely, I will likely try to accompany her." Then, Riordan turns to the matter of the Charltons. "She is rather unaware of most of it, unforunately. Or was, anyhow. Either that, or she is a better disembler then any I've met - and we all know I've met a few, recently." He shrugs, after giving his assessment, before adding to Roslyn and Jocelyn both, "Perhaps you two should get to know her while she is here. Perhaps introduce her to our Grandmother beside. I think she has yet to make many friends, being so recently let out of seclusion at Hollyholt - and she is something of a scholar beside, and a lover of history." And there is noone as historic in all of the Seven Kingdoms as their Lady Grandmother, Rebekkah, after all.
Rutger stares at Jarod. "You think your Lord Father, is some great man. He is not. If he was, he would have kept you as a knight. For all your loyalty, Ser Jarod, you were born of a man who knows nothing of it. Despite your new family's many, many faults. Which have been on display through various gossip and such. We have always had our own's back. Our Lord father should have done many a thing when it came to you and Rowenna, and all would have said it right, by 'honorable' standards. But he did the right thing by our family. He kept you, because you are important to his daughter. Yes, what might fly with pampered asses in King's Landing might not be the best approach with your Father. But I know what will speak to your father..His actions alone with your situation tells me how he deals with men." A sip of wine and he is looking back to Riordan. "Brother, no offense, but I would rather someone else with our Lady sister, while such rumors are hot in the pan. Despite what our goodbrother believes. Such rumors could only do you harm in Lord Jerold's eyes. So abide in that. You want to deal with an 'honorable' man as Lord Jerold- do not fuck his gooddaughter.. I think we've all hinted at it. Even our brother Half Eagle has said that much."
The mute known as Jocelyn, turns her head and nods towards Riordan when he asks her and Rosalyn to get to know the Charltons. The mental note made, before she looks back at Rutger.
Jarod's jaw does some tensing. But, for all he was so easily fired up about the idea of murder, he bites his tongue about this. "I think my father is a very different man than you, my lord, and you would make a ruin of things with the Terricks. You're proving it now. If you don't wish Ser Riordan to go with her, then perhaps another of your cousins. Anyone. That strange fellow in your town square who eats mud might do better for it." That might've been a bit cheeky. He shrugs to Roslyn. "Sorry, my lady, but Lord Rutger and Lord Jerold would be…bad. You'd do better to send Lord Rickart himself along with you." He's perfectly serious.
"As much as he does not seem so now," Roslyn begins with a sharp look towards Rutger, "I believe my brother a capable negotiator. As is Riordan. Though, this matter shall be left to our lord father. Perhaps he will wish to go himself, rather than in any of our hands." Apparently done, herself, she does push to her feet, gracefully smoothing her skirts as she looks to Jocelyn and gestures to her. She is not leaving the young lady alone with just men, obviously. "I think whatever else, there is only details to hash out and that we can do slowly. I will leave you to your… talk."
"Don't fuck another man's wife. Got it. Thank you, Rutger, for pointing out such a jewel of knowledge and wisdom that I would otherwise have missed," Riordan says, completely deadpan, regarding Rutger with an unblinking gaze for a moment. "In case you haven't noticed, Lady Anais and I have not done anything wrong. I have never been alone with her, and we have enjoyed an amiable friendship for a little while now. This is not the first rumor to come of it. Indeed, did you hear the one regarding how I had an orgy in my room, with her, two guards, and a maid? This was before the truth of Lady Danae came out, of course, so they weren't paid as much attention as now… Apparently it is more scandalizing, the fact that I apparently broke all the protocols in the Seven Kingdoms by dancing with her and kissing her hand, after she danced with the rest of the Seven Kingdoms first. And by some accounts, was accosted by attempts at worse then hand kissing." Riordan simply shakes his head, moving to rise as Roslyn does. "What you seem not to realize, brother, is that by reacting to rumors, you give them more credence. Suddenly changing negotiators, to someone with just as many rumors surrounding him, will not look good, I think. But, yes, it is up to father. Now if you'll all excuse me, I've a party to pretend to be surprised for. Or whatever it is you've planned for me, sister." He smiles to Roslyn, and will kiss her cheek, and move to depart as well.
"I prove it, because I speak the truth, and you know it. Ser Jarod, our world is not black and white. It contains various shades of Grey. Honor is just what men like your father couch behind when they make a decision in those shades that others might not particularly like." A glance to Jarod and Rutger starts moving closer to the young man. "You think, you know all my faces and how I deal with all men, because you've seen one thing and you've seen my brutal honesty which I do serve to my family. But you do not know me yet." a half smile there that almost seems sad, rather than some amused smirk or grin. A glance towards Roslyn and there is a brief nod. "Our priority should be disproving the marriage and finding where the Charltons lie. If we can find an inroad to break this scheme, that I am imagining-then let's do it."
A brief glance towards his brother, and Rutger snorts. "We react, because of how it looks. Brother. Just remember. No fucking." almost needled in on his poor younger brother, before he is glancing back to Jarod. "Wine?"
"Lady Anais has worked to help forge an alliance between the Mire and the Roost in a way none have tried for decades. Which deserves respect." Though Jarod says no more than that. He just looks long and level at Rutger. "Honor is all a man has when he's stripped bare, my lord. And it is never black and white, but if you think it put on so easily as a court mask…he is the wrong man to deal with the Terricks!" Jarod even points emphatically and looks at Roslyn and Riordan as he says this. Because when one has failed to get one to agree with you, repeating yourself and saying it louder is the way to go. "Wrong! If you value this alliance…wrong!" He seems to become aware he's being silly, and shakes his head with as much dignity at the offered wine as he can muster. "I think it's…err…time I retired."
Sees the look from her Cousin and Jocelyn stands from her seat slowly. Setting her wine glass down she steps away from her seat and offers a curtsey to the group before moving beside Roslyn to follow her lead.
"We have heard you, Jarod," Roslyn says simply, finally using her goodbrother's given name as she levels a look on him. It is all she can do to focus on that little thing rather than burst out yelling as one brother needles the other and sarcasm flies back and forth. She lets the rest lie, not stirring the ashes of dying coals. She manages a Look at Riordan, not a smile, but she does nod agreement to the surprise. "Good night." And then she turns to leave to probably smother herself with a pillow for a while.
Rutger chuckles as he watches Jarod. "Is that a no on the wine then?" A shrug and Rutger will be seeing to his own drink again. "I never said your father would see a court mask. I just said I know how to deal with Jerold Terrick." A sniff, and he is pouring himself some more. "Jarod-before you do retire. I am requesting your presence for noonday meal tomorrow, is that good for you, or would you prefer a later time?" After all you did marry his sister.
Glancing around the room, Jocelyn still says nothing and follows her Cousin towards the door quietly. She glances back only once when shes closer to the door, looking back to her male cousins.
The Look from Roslyn is expected, accepted, and then left behind as Riordan leaves the room, pausing only long enough to give Jocelyn a parting smile. Then, he's off, probably to the stables, judging by his tragectory.
"Uh…sure," Jarod says. A little robbed of his dramatic stompy exit by Rutger's lunch invitation, but he plays along. "I'll let Rowenna know. And…the many other people who're invited to join us, I'm sure." His tone is somewhat pleading about there being other people.
Rutger chuckles. "No. Just you.." and Maybe Rowenna, but still he chuckles ever so slightly, before he is drowning down more wine. "Goodnight, brother." he says before he is moving to head off as well.
"Huh. Fun." It's hard to tell if there's more sarcasm or rueful dread in those two syllables. Jarod offers Rutger a parting bow and mutters, "Good night, my lord." And goes to find his wife. Who likely found better things to do with herself before he started shouting about murder, or his little scene probably would've been a bigger scene.