Page 480: Spars and New Acquaintances
Spars And New Acquaintances
Summary: A late morning walk leads Lyanna past the training grounds, where she gets the chance to watch quite a display of sparring prowess and to get acquainted with two cousins of the Lord of Highfield.
Date: 15/11/2012
Related Logs: Wedding At Highfield
Daryl Miranda Lyanna 
Training Grounds, Tanglewood Manor
Set slightly below the standard ground level, in a wide, shallow pit, the training grounds are relatively spartan, flanked by the exterior barracks building and the protective outer wall of the Keep. Thick posts have been set deeply in the ground at one end of the 'field', wrapped thickly with padding to serve as a makeshift enemy for bladework. At the far side, a few circular targets await archers to assail them. But the space is largely left clear for one-on-one bouts. That is, after all, the best way to learn.
November 15th, 289

Well, today's a bit warmer than its been, devoid of wind and a bright sunny day. Its not yet noon, the sun above inching towards that halfway mark steadily. Within the pit that is the training grounds, Daryl stands in the center, sword clutched in hand. His head is bowed just a touch, but his eyes are up and alert, focusing on two men of lesser birth who also hold swords, one to his left, one to his right.

Calmly, Daryl lightly wipes at the small amount of sweat gathering above his brows, and then moves to remove his tunic, setting it elevated outside the pit, next to his jacket. Readying into a defensive stance, the shirtless Ashwood barks out sharply, sword rising into the air…"Begin!"

The two approach him, swinging blades from both sides. Daryl counters the first strike, ducking under the second and kicking said assailant back, now focusing on the one in front him. Live steel 'clanks' loudly, as Daryl continues to spar, his face set with focus.

Walking down from the manor, Miranda is in close conversation with her maid, Eva. "Yes, I know, but going does not do any harm." Eva looks almost pained, though she does adjust the parasol she carries so the shade falls over both her mistress' face but her own. Recognizing that look, Miranda sighs and aims to reply, but her attention is caught by the unmistakable sound of steel on steel. Concern flashes to her eyes and she angles toward the pit. Spotting her brother's jacket and tunic, she picks up her skirts and hastens to see what is going on. As she arrives on the lea side of the pit, it is likely that Daryl can see her, but his opponents cannot. She looks from one to the other to the other in order to try and figure out what is going on. Speaking softly to Eva, "I do not know if they train with live steel. What do you think?" She would ask her brother, but does not want to distract him. Eva shrugs, her own concern clear in her smoke-grey eyes.

A late morning walk about the grounds surrounding Tanglewood Manor have led the young granddaughter of Lord Walder, that has been entrusted with the office of Ambassador to Highfield, to the Training Grounds by the Barracks. Lyanna is accompanied by the usual Frey guard and her septa - the latter more out of routine than necessity, as the Frey lady is already beyond the age requiring extensive guarding. Lyanna's 22nd nameday was only some weeks ago. Wearing a practical dress in the blue and grey colours of House Frey, more suitable for riding than attending courtly events, the Frey lady casts a glance about the area, and her demeanour lights up as she notices the action going on - whether it is the pleasure of watching a sparring match or beholding a shirtless noble remains unclear.

Lyanna approaches with swift steps until she reaches a position close enough to watch but not that close that she might get in the way, her deep blue eyes sparkling with delight. Greeting the other noble lady and her maid with a polite nod, Lyanna bites her lip as she tries to remember the lady's name. She must have met her at the recent wedding, but given the many new faces at that occasion Lyanna has a hard time remembering her name, so she offers a neutral greeting accompanied by a friendly nod in the hope her poor memory might go unnoticed. "A good day to you, my lady. Awfully hot today, is it not?" Both her septa and her guard remain close by in unobtrusive silence.

<FS3> Opposed Roll — Daryl=blades Vs NPC=4
< Daryl: Great Success NPC: Success
< Net Result: Daryl wins - Solid Victory

Daryl lets out a grunt, teeth clenching as he parrys an incoming sword strike from one, he moves smoothly, trying to maintain his composure despite being at a disadvantage at the moment. He doesn't seem to be swinging back as much, more parrying and keeping his enemy at bay by any means. As the nearer sparring partner swings at him, Daryl spins, sliding sword onto sword in a parry that leaves a resounding, 'shiiiiing!'. Moving without hesitation, Daryl sweep kicks his adversary, knocking one foot of balance, before following through with the spin, using his sword to smash and lift the other man's steady foot. The end result? His sparring partner is lifted out from under himself, landing in the dirt on his back with a thud.

Daryl has a moment to notice that suddenly there's an audience. "Sister! How are you." The other partner, who's still on his feet, pauses to see if he should continue. Noting the mans hesitation, Daryl waves it off, "We can dance and talk. C'mon then." He beckons the other man, and he rushes, while Daryl does the same. They each catch eachother's sword handle, resulting in a stalemate as the two men wrestle physically, trying to disarm the other.

The man is able to swing Daryl into the side of the pit, both straining and grunting as they exhaust energy. Pinned temporarily, Daryl peeks up towards the sky, and then spots (upside down, of course) Lyanna. A bit of a casual smile then. "M'lady." He greets of the woman he has not had proper introductions with, "Fancy meeting you here under such circumstances." He's cut off, as the other man even raises him off the ground just a touch. "Excuse me a moment," Daryl breathes out, bracing his back against the wall and using both legs to kick the man away. "You're good," he states of the other man, wry smirk on his face. Then Daryl elevates his voice, "How does the day treat you fine noblewomen?" Daryl is still in a ready stance, awaiting another assault.

Miranda smiles a quiet smile toward her brother, "Daryl." Laughter dances in her gaze as she watches the sparing for a moment. Catching Lyanna's voice, she turns her way, "Good day to you, my lady." Studying the other woman's face, she searches her memory but comes up with nothing, "Forgive me. I am Miranda Ashwood. I do not believe that we have met?" That last is spoken with a slight lilt as though the query carries a slight hesitation with the uncertainty, "If we have and I have merely misplaced your name, pray blame it on my brother. Though in truth, I will have to invent a reason for laying blame there out of whole cloth." She offers Lyanna a hand, gloved in mourning black to go with her clothing. Her attention is drawn again as Daryl speaks to Lyanna from the pit's wall. Watching for a moment, she calls, "Ware the left, Daryl." Eva steps up next to Miranda, and while she drops Lyanna a curtsy, can she be blamed if her attention is primarily on the shirtless noble? Hardly.

<FS3> Opposed Roll — Daryl=blades Vs NPC=4
< Daryl: Failure NPC: Good Success
< Net Result: NPC wins - Solid Victory
<FS3> Opposed Roll — Daryl=blades Vs NPC=4
< Daryl: Success NPC: Good Success
< Net Result: NPC wins - Solid Victory

Lyanna flinches as she sees the shirtless fighter being pinned to the ground - and while her eyes flicker with a bit of concern she remembers this knight being one of the many Ashwoods - a cousin perhaps to the Lord of Highfield? Yet that name refuses to resurface in her memory. The nobleman's greeting takes the young Frey lady by surprise, as it is uttered while he is still pinned by his opponent. "The circumstances are indeed a bit… unusual, yes" she replies, not quite as quick-witted as usual, but that might be indeed due to the shirtlessness of the nobleman. There is a short moment of hesitation to gather her wits and suppress a blush, before Lyanna turns her attention to Miranda, whose greeting comes as a most welcome distraction. "Lady Miranda, I am Lyanna Frey. Maybe we have met at the wedding? I have to admit, I have some difficulty remembering all the names belonging to the many new faces…" Lyanna's gaze goes for a short moment to the nobleman, then back to Miranda. "Your… brother's too, I'm afraid."

"The left?" Daryl queries, brow raising as he looks to see the man he downed rushing him at a charge. His eyes widen in an 'oh shit' kind of expression. The sound of contact made as the first man tackles and slams Daryl into the dirt. Ah. That may've hurt a touch.

"Sorry, m'lord, was that too muc…" The man begins, quite not wanting to anger the nobleman.

"Nonsense!" Daryl speaks, taking the moment of hesistation to wrestle away and push the man off him…Just in time for the other to come swinging with -his- blade. Daryl acts quickly, rolling sharply to the right, the attacking blade trailing behind and causing a small cut as it grazes his side; not quite fast enough. Daryl gets back onto his feet, one hand reaching to glide along the cut, crimson liquid dabbled on his finger. He flicks it away and stands at the ready, slowly circling the men as he makes his own introduction to Lyanna, "Lord Daryl Ashwood, M'lady Frey. It's a pleasure to meet you." Despite the slight panting, he's able to speak quite smoothly. A look up towards Miranda, before Daryl advances on his attackers, hoping for some payback.

<FS3> Opposed Roll — Daryl=blades Vs NPC=4
< Daryl: Good Success NPC: Good Success
< Net Result: Daryl wins - Marginal Victory
<FS3> Opposed Roll — Daryl=blades Vs NPC=4
< Daryl: Good Success NPC: Good Success
< Net Result: DRAW

Splitting her attention between the lady nearby and her noble brother, Miranda shakes her head just a little, "You would not have met me at the wedding, Lady Frey. I was not able to make it to the reception afterwards, though I did attend the ceremony." As Daryl is rushed into the dirt, she raises her hand to her lips, a soft 'oh!' of concern beginning, followed by a step toward the pit. But, Daryl is a strong and resiliant fellow and really she should know better. When he rises and seems mostly hale, if not entirely whole, she sighs with relief when the injury proves to be fairly superficial. Her gaze meets his for a lingering look, although she speaks to the lady with her. "Forgive me, Lady Frey. I tend to assume that everyone has already met my brother."

Lyanna raises a brow in concern as she notices the nobleman's cut on his side, her gaze resting there for a moment with the same casual interest a maester might show as she assesses the gravity of the wound from afar. Neither particularly shaken nor made uncomfortable by the sight of blood like many other women of higher birth, Lyanna nods, the corners of her mouth twisting into a friendly smile upon his polite introduction and greeting. "I am glad to make your acquaintance, Lord Daryl, that is, if I haven't met you at the wedding… But if I have, I am glad to renew it. You are a cousin to Lord Aleister, I suppose…?" The latter part being added with a slight strain of uncertainty in the Frey lady's voice.

And pushing a rebellious strand of her dark brown hair out of her view Lyanna turns to Miranda. "You were not at the feast? Then this would be indeed my first encounter with you, Lady Miranda. And I am pleased to make your acquaintance." Lyanna makes the most courteous curtsey she can manage. Straightening her back she smoothes out her skirts with a thoughtful expression on her face. "My grandfather Lord Walder has sent me here as Ambassador to Highfield - an official title which is supposed to mean he wants to demonstrate his support and make sure he has that of House Ashwood as well. The aim is to ensure the peace is being kept in these lands. But apart from that I do enjoy my stay here. And Lord Aleister's hospitality." She finishes with an amiable smile, her eyes looking from Miranda to Daryl - who has not yet finished his sparring session.

The men rush him at once, and Daryl does a good job hiding the difficulty of defending himself behind a confident demeanor, As the first man swings high, Daryl's sword arm is risen, another loud clash. Daryl pushes that man back enough to spare some room for his second attacker, who swings vertically, Daryl sidestepping the attack, and then another cleaving motion towards the nobleman's legs. Daryl leaps up in the knick of time, one foot coming down on the blade, driving it into the dirt, pinning it below his heel. This leaves that man quite vulnerable to a particularly harsh knee to the face, the man crying out in surprise and laying in the dirt.

No rest for the weary, it seems, as the other attacker is back in Daryl's face, the two swinging and parrying eachothers blows in spectacular and…Increasingly violent fashion. Daryl narrowly dips his head down under a swing, and responds in kind. The two swords meet with such force that they clatter and clang out of both men's grips, leaving them unarmed.

Now quite winded, Daryl claps softly, applauding his opponent and moving to the side of the pit, climbing up to sit with his legs dangling while he catches his breath. Soon, he rises to his feet and looks about for his clothing. When he hears Lyanna speaking to Miranda, his brows raise just a millimeter in interest, and he dons a charming smile while he joins them, idly reaching into a pocket and retrieving a vial of some sort of light green, thick substance. "Indeed a cousin to Lord Aleister. Newly arrived to highfield, more or less." He looks to the pit, then back at Lyanna, "I beg pardon for that rather violent display. And…Had I seen you at the reception, you'd likely be the first woman i'd approach for introductions. I…" He looks down at his chest, a bit dirty, cut and small showings of bruisings, "Am not exactly in the same attire or state of cleanliness I was that night, but I hope this will suffice."

Miranda turns her gaze back to the pit as the men rush her brother. She watches, almost not daring to breath, as the three go at it with vigour and intent. She stifles a gasp when Daryl is seemingly about to be cut down, then smiles when he jumps and neatly, if painfully, disarms his opponent. When it is over, she releases tension and concern for her sibling in a long sigh. Turning to Lyanna, she inclines her head a little, eyes widening at the more complete introduction, "It is an honor to meet you then, Lady Frey. Your grandfather has given you a position of responsibility and authority. I do hope that you find everything to your liking… But, please excuse me. Daryl has come out here without a salve for bruises and cuts, more than likely. I will just go up to the house and bring something for that cut. Your pardon, Lady." She turns a smile to Daryl, "Excuse me, brother-mine. I will return." With that, she suits word to deed and walks back up toward the manor.

The sudden increase in the vehemence of the attacks and parrys being exchanged has Lyanna furrow a brow in surprised concern. While her deep blue eyes do not leave the Ashwood for one moment she inquires with a light shake of her head from Miranda: "I am a bit surprised that your brother doesn't wear any armour. Should he not wear an armour? If one of those attacks should manage to hit home…" Lyanna falls silent, the bewildered look in her eyes suggesting she is either very impressed with Daryl's bravery or astonished by his foolishness. There is a sigh of relief from the Frey lady as the sparring concludes and Daryl joins them at the side of the pit. Lyanna nods as Miranda shows her concern and speaks of her intention to fetch a salve for her brother's bruises. "I would think it advisable, if you want to prevent the wound from getting infected… I hope to see you later, Lady Miranda." The Frey lady's eyes follow the Ashwood lady with a pensive stare as she leaves for the main building.

"You have my pardon, my lord…" Lyanna replies then in a much lighter mood now as she follows his gaze down on his filthy and bruised chest, her mouth twisting into an amused smile. "But I certainly do hope this was not what you wore at the reception. It has sufficed for what you intended to do, has it not? To demonstrate your courage and prowess to a pair of tidy and anxious young ladies. But now that the demonstration is over I would beg you to go and clean yourself and put on something more fitting… It is almost noon, and I am sure we are all expected in the Great Hall for lunch." Lyanna chuckles in amusement, before she turns to her guard and septa - the latter wearing a stony expression on her mid-forty face and deliberately averting her gaze from the nobleman's torso. "I will return to my chamber first - there is a letter that waits to be written - before I will join all of you for the meal. Lord Daryl. It has been a pleasure." And with these words Lyanna turns and leaves, following in Miranda's footsteps with her guard and her septa in tow.

"That it is," Daryl agrees, looking up at the noon sun blaring down. He lets out a few more long exhales, watching as the Frey noblewoman leaves, smirking just a touch. Amused. Perhaps at the whole matter in general. He dusts himself off some and grabs his clothing and sword, nodding oncemore to his sparring partners and moving to head away from the training grounds, to clean up.