|Some Things Best Spoken|
|Summary:||Ozric summons Mortimer to continue their conversation from the day before. More is revealed than he perhaps might have been expecting.|
|Related Logs:||Continues a conversation from The Young Lord Returns, references Fishermen, Family and Frolicks, Briefing and Interuptions, The Carefree Lord and maybe others|
|Reading Room, Four Eagle's Tower|
|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.|
|Fri Feb 22, 290|
With the day having begun it's throes, the Tower itself has become a hub of some activity. Missives being sent out and the daily business being seen to. Among that is a summons down to the township for the Deputy. Once that has been done the Lord Terrick has retired himself back to the reading room, for a more private meeting. There is wine, but only one cup-so it seems that the deputy will likely not be offered something to drink. Instead, with a few bits of parchment in hand, The Young Lord sits, and waits.
Having put off, or farmed out to others, any tasks requiring leaving the Roost to deal with problems elsewhere, Mortimer is not particularly hard to find in town. One might even suppose that was deliberately so. Once the messenger appears he makes his way up to the tower and, after confirming with one of the servants there where the Young Lord can be found, heads for the reading room. After a swift knock on the door to announce his presence he enters, closing the door behind him before offering the required obediences to Ozric, along with a habitual, "m'Lord."
Ozric glances up and the parchment is set aside. He does not rise to greet Mortimer, instead the lone blue eye of Ser Ozric just remains on the man before him. There's an extending of his finger and he in turn points to the chair opposite of him. Consider it a request for the older deputy to take a seat. Only then, does the Young Lord settle in his chair, a bit further. A glance over to the cup of wine, he had taken earlier and his hand drifts, but hesitates.
"I would have called you yesterday, but found myself busy." A look back over as the cup is snatched. "We did not get a chance to finish our discussion."
Mortimer generally prefers to stand, but this is one time when he's not going to be arguing the point, or in fact even mentioning it. Giving a single, shallow nod in understanding he sits as instructed and then listens as Ozric speaks. "Aye m'Lord," he answers, once the Young Lord has finished, "we did not." There's a momentary pause as she tries to decide if he should wait for Ozric to ask his questions, but then the words of the day before come back to him and he concludes that actually, taking the initiative to show willing, just a little, might not be a terrible thing. "What was it you were wanting to know m'Lord?"
"Simple." And he leans forward. "I want to know the state of my House and the people in it." And there is one finger raised. "I have heard rumors of shouting in a fucking Inn, and anger that could split my own house. I have also heard that Lady Anais, from Ser Kamron's words is beyond the pale with her anger. What I want to know is-where do things stand. Where is there division. And if my betrothed is to be here, will she be safe from some stupid misguided bit of anger." And with that Ozric leans back. "And I say misguided as likely the Lady Nedra had as much of a hand in these matters as myself." meaning the current betrothal.
"I know my father's hand is on this-and it is indeed a boon for Terrick to net us a deeper held alliance with the Mallisters. This cements this, specially with my line."
Mortimer digests that for a moment, there's some he can answer and some he can't but he figures the easiest way is probably to take it from the top and just work through in the order things were raised. He's already sitting straight rather than slouching, but he does square his shoulders just a fraction as he states to gently shake his head. "I know of no incidents of shouting m'Lord, not beyond the normal drunken fare of who's round it is or why is the grain cart late and such." The fact that Ozric has heard rumours though unsettles him a little as it leaves him wondering what he might have missed. Taking a deep breath he moves on, "I've seen Lady Anais twice since the news broke m'Lord. First was immediately after and aye m'Lord she was upset. I think she heard while she was about the town, possibly even at the Sept itself, seemed to have come as a shock. Second time was a few days later and we spoke only briefly, but she seemed calmer at least. Thats all I know on that I'm afraid m'Lord, I haven't been about the keep much since."
There's a nod there as he leans back into his chair. Quiet as he lets the deputy speak. "I understand. I just hope you understand when there are rumors coming out about my family yelling about this in a damned inn-that I must know, or should know what is going on. Specially if there is talk amongst the retainers." And he lets that settle for a moment, before he takes a sip of his wine. "Our taking control was divisive enough. Now something that should be a happy announcement seems to bring on it more ill omens."
A roll of his shoulders and he looks back over towards Mortimer. "What is your opinion, Master Trevelyan?"
The exact moment that Mortimer twigs about just what incident Ozric is referring to is fairly obvious. He'd just been nodding to show his understanding of Ozric's concern when the comment about it being a family member sinks in and everything becomes clear. Or Clearer at least. "M'Lord," he starts perhaps a little tentatively, "would you be meaning about Lord Keenan after his meeting with the fishermen? Only there was no shouting there, just talking, all be it in a packed room." Looking faintly uncomfortable, given he was there at the time, he adds, "he came over to talk to me about it. I tried to make it clear that it was a bad time and place but had to steer the conversation onto the ball at Stonebridge as I'm not sure he understood m'Lord." Or perhaps cared, but he's not sure enough of things at the moment to go that far. He doesn't comment on the divisiveness of Lord Bolland's take over, there's nothing useful he could add and it's all in the past anyway.
As for the final question, that one he considers for a few moment, lifting one hand up to rub at his chin as he does so. He has a definite preference for not being asked his opinion on politics thats way over his head, but it's not like he has a huge amount of choice in the matter really. "I think, m'Lord," he starts, a hint of caution in his voice, "I think that things will settle. Lord Jerold's departure was a shock and the town held it's breath to see what your Lord Father would be like." That he seems to have done a damn fine job of not letting anyone find that out is left aside as unhelpful. "I think that just as people were starting to get used to the new way of things, this happens and everything is uncertain again. There's a good working relationship between Lady Anais and the town. Each side knows how the other works and how to get along and keep things running. The idea that that will go, to be replaced by something unknown has everyone on edge." Turns out his conversation with Nedra yesterday has helped as he can now actually frame his thoughts in what he hopes is a useful manner. There is one final thought though, and he's not sure if it's one too far or not which results in his chin receiving another rub from his hand as he debates silently.
Ozric is silent for a moment, before he is nodding. There's a look to the retainer, as his hands clasp there in the middle and he gingerly takes time to pop his knuckles. His jaw sets tight for a second, before he leans back in his chair-that singular eye of his closing. "I feel, Master Trevelyan-that we might have inherited a good deal of shit." A look back towards the deputy now. "Believe me, my good man. I do not care if my opinion is popular. But I do want it followed." he simply says before looking back to the other man. "You've seen more years here than I have, Mortimer. I do believe you and take your words as fine advice." he says finally. "I do understand being on edge-even in such a place."
On edge. Thats a nice and succinct way of summarising Mortimer's general state of mine at the moment, although it's fair to say that he's not as bad now as he was the afternoon before. That being said though, the knuckle popping and jaw clenching does little to settle him further and he's even starting to drop his head to a more subservient angle as the Young Lord closes his eye and starts to speak. "Aye m'Lord, I'm sure it will be m'Lord," he replies with the barest of nods. He can only speak for himself, hence the 'I'm sure' infront of 'it will be', but the words of the day before have him aware enough of what the penalty might be if it were not the case. As for the rest, that he simply listens to in silence before replying with another, slightly more definite nod and a "thank you m'Lord."
"You understand why I did get mad at the Sept yes?" the knight asks, as he glances back to the other man. "It is not because-you weren't listening to me." he says softly. "It is because you were not reporting everything. Even if you had cautioned for a better venue, I would have taken the advice." The Young Lord admits. "I know you would have acquiesced or should have-were it better. But when everyone is already on a razor's edge? I cannot have people doubting this line or at worse joining those who are hellbent on taking it apart." Which are likely not many if any at all. And there Ozric shifts his head. "If I were to tell you, Master Trevelyan-you could speak freely without worry of losing your neck? What would you ask or say?"
Mortimer doesn't answer for a long while, or it seems like a long while to him at least, it's probably only a matter of moments though. Just long enough to try and frame what he is to say in words, rather than than just jumbled thoughts. He keeps his responses down to short nods for most of what Ozric says, all but that last question, and before he answers that he lifts a hand to rub the back of his neck for a moment. "I think, m'Lord," he starts, eyes still a little downcast before he takes a deep breath and looks up properly, "I think m'Lord I would say two things. Firstly I would say speak with those who serve. There was upheaval when you can and then it settled and now there is more upheaval. I know of no one who has said it m'Lord, but there is unease among the staff, the retainers. The question no one is asking but nigh on everyone is thinking is 'is this just the start?'. 'I your Lord Father confident enough now that he knows how this place runs that he's going to start cementing his rule by bringing in his people to replace your Lord Uncle's." He pauses for a breath there, the words having come easier once he'd actually said them. If he had a drink he'd probably have had some, but since he doesn't he then just carries on.
"The second thing m'Lord," he starts, faintly awkward again, as if this one is harder to say. "Forgive me m'Lord but you did say to speak freely. The second thing is that if you want to see less trouble regarding your line then you should look to what it is doing." There's faint exasperation there now, he's obviously not comfortable in what he's saying, but the question has been asked. "Some make no secret of their favourites, nor those of us who they see as inadequate." It's easy enough to argue that it's their right as nobles, but it hardly does wonders for morale. "While your Lord Brother m'Lord, he is possibly the loudest voice of dissent in town with regards to your Lord Father taking residence. He calls meeting sin the Inn, discusses matters with people then openly implies that nothing will come of it regardless. When speaking to me I have only heard him go so far as to say 'stepped over' but from others I have heard so he has used 'usurp'. He freely comments on perceived failings of your Lord Father in public and has at times been known to openly mock him as well."
"As he should. Any noble would bring their own men and women to run their house. and as such I believe Lady Anais should not have assumed it was her place. As such he is securing the need of his line with the Mallisters and showing himself to be a good bannerman to Lord Patrek by wedding me to Nedra. I understand the move in this. He is playing the long game-and has to I believe if we are going to survive here. Upheaval is part of this. Natural." Ozric replies back before he is offering a half grin. But, then he is reaching for his cup again to take another drink. A pause and he is looking back towards Mortimer
"What's this? Which brother?" because he has a couple, Brogan, Keenan and of course the youngest, Lothar. "My own brother says our father stole his seat of power?"
"I wasn't meaning Lady Anais m'Lord," Mortimer replies, he's understands the arguments and feelings on both sides and is very glad that it's so very far above his head that he has no involvement. "I was meaning the servants and retainers, all those of us who hold our positions by appointment from either Lord Jerold or Lord Jascen, Seven keep him." He leaves the point there though, it's been made and Ozric can either do something with it or not as he chooses, that being his privilege as Young Lord. Nodding to confirm he meant what he said about the as of yet unnamed Terrick he then supplies quietly, "Lord Keenan m'Lord. And aye, he has said such, in front of others on more than one occasion."
"No, I know of who you speak. And I know of whom I talk to the most of those who serve in our lands." Likely he needs to talk to Nathaniel and a few others more, but you are ever there Mortimer, ever. Still Ozric takes a drink and is silent. Careful to just let that sit there and think on the words he's heard. "Could you bring me someone who would collaborate this?" meaning of his brother-the fact that he is not murdering Mortimer is good, right?
"Half the fishermen of the town," Mortimer answers slightly grimly, knowing that that's not really an answer Ozric will want to hear. "The barman was kept busy but like as not he heard some and I'm sure I could rustle up a few more names from other instances if that's your wish m'Lord." Taking the lack of exploding Young Lord as a good sign he does seem to be a little more settled than before, although given the topic at hand it's probably not all that surprising that he's still not exactly comfortable. Falling silent again for a moment he then adds, slightly tentatively, "I should also make you aware m'Lord, now I've told you all that, that there have been a couple of instances of," he pauses for the right word before settling on, "ill feeling, between myself and Lord Keenan on other matters. Nothing serious and nothing came of them, but you should probably know now rather than it come up later."
The lack of exploding might have to do with a myriad of reasons, though the subtle shift in the Young Lord's jaw can be detected. And there he nods ever carefully. "I see.." he adds, his voice rough-likely choked by emotion, but it's swallowed down in the name of the famed stoicism of the Vale. And with a tilt of his head he looks back towards Master Trevelyan. "What other matters, if I may?" asks Ozric, softly.
"They were both during the hunt for the missing children m'Lord," Mortimer starts, giving Ozric a timeframe at least. "The first early on, before he lent his sailors to the search, when he was asking what was going on. I informed him Inna's disappearance and of the search and he, suggested, that young girls didn't go mysterious missing and that they instead run off to sell themselves." There's a brief clenching of his own jaw there, that idea, however flatly he spoke it, obviously still causing a reaction. Given how obvious a reaction he then rubs his neck once more before explaining, tone a little looser, "m'Lord. I don't know if you are aware, but I had a daugher, not much younger than Inna, who has been missing over a year now. Your Lord Brother didn't know, I know that, but the flippancy of his remark, when he did know that she was only 8, was hard to take and I had to excuse myself from the conversation." Dropping the hand back to his lap again he continues, "the second time m'Lord, I was with Lord Justin. We were discussing progress on that and also the hunt for the archer who shot Mistress Dorsey. Your Lord Brother, in the course of the conversation, compared the Lord Sheriff to an Ironborn reaver and asked if all Terricks were the same or if it was customs they'd picked up during the occupation. Again though m'Lord, nothing came of it and that time he excused himself so that Lord Justin and I could continue our conversation."
The Young Lord is silent-likely it's more do to the effect of the words he is hearing, as opposed to the drink he had been enjoying. And without so much of another word Ozric is quickly standing and moving to pace away from his deputy. His jaw, visibly tight now, as he comes back, and easily pushes over the chair he was seated in. A display of emotion, raw. Anger showing before he is reaching to right the chair and that fine veneer of calm and collected noble placed back just so. "My cousin showed kindness not deserved.." and then he is looking back towards Trevelyan. "You are dismissed.." added brusquely, before he is raising one hand.
"Mortimer, wait." even if it is but a moment he turns and looks over his shoulder. "Thank you."
Mortimer does flinch, ever so slightly,as the chair is used and abused for no crime of it's own, but as Ozric seems to get things in hand again quickly he simply stands to accept the dismissal. He's halfway up at the command to wait and instead of pausing in such an awkward and ungainly position finishes standing, although then makes no further move to leave. His attention fully on the Young Lord as he speaks he listens in silence to those two words before reply with both the required bow and a "thank you m'Lord." That being done he turns for the door, his habitual half a back back before doing so being abandoned this time due to the presence of the chair he had been sitting on.