|Summary:||Tyroan, Anathema, and Visenya discuss the nature of loyalty and family.|
|Related Logs:||Stonebridge's Trials and Tribulations, sickness in the Flint camp.|
|Map Room, Tordane Tower|
|This room used to be the smallest of the guest rooms in Tordane Tower, but all of the previous furniture has been removed save a small side-table that holds two or three tankards and a pitcher of bitter Mire beer. Several other small tables have been added around the walls, holding a selection of books and parchments brought in from the library. Additionally, a standing table is centered in the room, surrounded by tall stool-like chairs built to its height. Atop that table is a large map of Stonebridge and its surrounding area, with colored blocks placed across it in the troop positions from the last Battle of Stonebridge.|
|28 December, 289|
It is midmorning, and a warm sun shines into the map room. One of the Tower cats has snuck into the room, and is sprawled out in the oncoming light. Anathema Nayland has pulled up one of the lounge chairs toward that same square of sunlight, enjoying the warmth while she reads through the most recent ledger. "Coffers are improving," she announces to her husband. "Our copper-pinching is starting to pay off." Perched on the top of one bookcase is Balerion, and he eyes the cat cautiously as it rolls over onto its back, exposing its belly to the warmth.
Tyroan looks down at the cat on the map table and growls, "Move." It looks up at him with slitted eyes, and then drops its head again, basking in the sunlight. The Steward harrumphs, "Fucking pussy." And then he moves directly between the cat and the sun, eying it tightly. The cat yowls in quiet annoyance, rolls over, and stalks off to look for warmth and affection elsewhere. Tyroan looks back over to Anathema, nodding "Starting to. Which is good."
Tap tap at the door. It's the eldest daughter seeking out at least one parent and this seems to be the best chance of finding them. Visenya clasps her hands loosely together before her, waiting patiently. Or at least as patiently as she can manage. Behind her stands her maid, much less able to to maintain a diligent quiet and she is shifting back and forth, bouncing on the tips of her toes and eying the occasional male servant that ambles by.
"Cats are fickle things, Husband," Ana says casually as she turns the ledger's page, glancing down the column of numbers. "If you don't show them affection, they won't catch the mice… and then you'll have to learn how to catch them, because I won't have rodents in my house." She glances over toward her husband with a sly smile before she glances up at the sound of the knock. "Come," she calls as she shuts the ledger firmly, setting the book aside as she rises to her feet.
Tyroan brushes cathair off the section of the map that was serving as a cat-seat, snorting softly, "And if I show the fucking cat affection, it'll try to fucking trip me. I've got enough people trying to bump me the fuck off without adding four-legged fuck-tards." He looks to the open door, "Why in all the hells do people insist on knocking? It's not like I'm getting any fucking younger." The Steward is evidently in a mood, shaking his head as he moves over to sit in one of the tall chairs alongside the table.
Visenya slinks into the room, tilting her head to the side as she addresses both mother and father. She dips down into a small curtsey. "Mother. Father," she murmurs in greeting. "I do hope that I am not disturbing you." Her smile is bright and affectionate toward both parents. "I had wished to make a request of you, if you had a mind to hear me out."
Considering the length of time the pair have been married, it is perhaps unsurprising that Anathema is amused by her husband's mood instead of pitying. "Visenya, give your father's cheek a kiss… he needs someone to comfort him." The Witch casts her husband a smile before she glances back toward her eldest daughter. She outstretches her hand toward Balerion, the raven fluttering down to land on her knuckles before being relocated to her shoulder. Regardless of whether or not the kiss is given, she nods her head gently to invite her daughter to make her request.
Tyroan leans back against the half-back of the chair, turning his cheek to his daughter, "Yeah. What do you want of dear old…" he pauses, leaning forward to rub at his back, "damned fucking old… dad?" He runs a hand back along his bald scalp, "This better fucking not have anything to do with that shitstain who went missing out of Highfield. So far as I'm godsdamned concerned, he can just stay fucking missing."
Visenya smiles in Anathema's direction but ambles over to plant a kiss on Tyroan's cheek, beaming up at her father with daughterly love. "Such news should please you, Father, not make you grumbly," she points out gently. "And it is no concern of mine what happens to that pitifully small House," she adds, nose wrinkling. "If they are unable to keep an eye on their House Leader, then shame on them." She sweeps her gaze back to her mother, "But it does have to do with Highfield. I had wished to go and offer my services to the Flint encampment. Word is going through town that they are seeing their first deaths." She bites at her lower lip. "Mother, you taught me much of the herbal remedies. More I learned on my own when I left to be married and I feel now, when our kin - no matter how distant - is in dire straights, we must offer our aid." A pause. "And any assistance we offer could undermine what the Ashwoods are attempting since they have thus far been unsuccessful."
Anathema looks pleased as Tyroan is given that kiss. She starts to ruffle at the raven's feathers as the bird nuzzles it's head against her dark hair. At their daughter's request, she looks over toward Tyroan briefly before she returns her attention on Visenya. "Your cousins will be thankful to see you," she says with that same casual note. "However… the nature of this affliction is still a bit of a mystery. And it is something that your brother cannot protect you from. You will need to take precautions."
Tyroan nods definitively at Visenya's statements about House Ashwood, leaning back in his chair again. The mention of the Flint encampment draws a grunt, and he shifts in the high seat, "A good fucking point." Anathema's words draw another nod, "You're not getting sick, Vis." Looking over to his wife, he arches one grayed eyebrow, "So how in the fuck do we make sure our Vis doesn't get sick when she's surrounded by people coughing their fucking lungs up?"
Visenya is next moving to Anathema to offer her a kiss on the cheek as well. "I would loath the idea of becoming sick as well but to sit idly by and do nothing…" She does cant her head to the side. "What precautions do you think could keep me safe from such an illness?" she inquires. "I would very much like to avoid growing ill, but how is that possible?"
Anathema transfers the raven from her shoulder to the wooden perch on the edge of the map table. which frees her cheek for the kiss and draws a comfortable smile. "There are some precautions Visenya can take. A cloth about her nose and mouth, and taking some herbal brews that fend off the symptoms." She tilts her head as she looks toward her daughter, and she offers a stern, maternal look. "You will need to be aware of yourself, my dear… minimize exposed skin, wash frequently, bring changes of clothes. I have some dried leaves of the Riverrun Godswood that you should keep in a satchel in your pocket, along with a bloodstone that should be cleansed nightly."
Tyroan shrugs broadly at query from his daughter, "Fuck if I know." He points over to Anathema, "That's her field." The first advice from his wife causes him to nod, but then she gets on about godswoods and bloodstones, and he shrugs a bit more helplessly, "Whatever she says. Can't hurt to add a crystal," for the Seven, of course, "and a copy of the Seven-Pointed Star." Not that he believes in all that rot, "If worse comes to worse, you can fucking hit someone with it."
Visenya nods her head solemnly as she listens to her mother's words. "You know that I will be cautious, mother," she says quietly. "You taught me well. And I will of course be well-protected from the Ashwoods. But even they cannot fault a Nayland-born coming to offer assistance where she can." A pause as she looks between both. "Would it be possible to procure healing supplies that I can take as a goodwill gesture to the Flints from the Naylands of Stonebridge?"
Anathema casts a glance toward her husband as he brings the Seven into it, but she has long ago given up trying to separate her faith from that of her husband's — even if he is more heathen than she is. She shakes her head a bit as she sinks back into her seat. "For our cousins, yes… take what you need, but we are still recovering our stores." She tilts her head once she relaxes back into the cushions of the chair. "When will you leave?"
Tyroan grunts softly again, "Might want to fucking emphasize that they're family. Not that they're likely to fucking complain about anyone coming to help when they're so obviously fucking incompetent." Not that it's really anything major, not yet at least, but that's not going to stop Tyroan from tearing into his new punching bags. "Talk to the bookworm," the Maester "about what we've got extra." There's a grunt, "If they need food, maybe that can be a fucking use for all that godsdamned grain that my idiot nephew," there's a pause, "the less-idiot one, bought for a fucking King's fucking ransom."
Visenya smiles grimly, "I will see what can be spared and offer my assistance in as… public a way as possible so that none can be in doubt that House Nayland offers its support when there is trouble. I will ensure that an assortment of goods that we do not need for ourselves are put together before I depart." She considers. "I was thinking of departing as soon as everything was put together, Mother. It is a decent day's travel between here and Highfield and I do not wish to lose too much light." To her father, her smile is far more grim. "It does make one wonder on occasion who one can trust, even amongst family, when so many of my darling cousins have made a mockery of our name."
"When you arrive, see if you can find your cousin Einar. He will vouch for you if you need a Flint to do so." Anathema stretches a bit in her seat, her lower back pain subsiding a bit as she relaxes once more. "And I want you to keep me updated, Love… if you need me, I will be sure to head North at a moment's notice." She tilts her head a bit, looking momentarily thoughtful. "You could, if you wish, see if Lady Sabriel and your brother Aeron wouldn't mind coming along if you felt you needed a few extra hands. I have been passing along some knowledge to the Haigh lady, and your brother certainly knows some things his grandmother has taught him." She pauses a moment, adding. "If you wish."
Tyroan leans forward in his chair, collecting a pair of walnuts from a little bowl on the table. He rolls them around in the palm of one hand, "Except for the fuckwit," that would be Rafferdy, "I don't think any of them were fucking doing it intentionally. Your Uncle Rickart's sons just seem to be fucking idiots." Looking over at the stretching Anathema, he beckons her over a bit, gathering up his un-walnuted hand to knead at her lower back. "Let's just not bring whatever the fuck is going around there down here. Nothing fucks up trade better than rumors of illness."
Visenya shakes her head, a small smile blooming though as she watches the display that makes her parents so effective a team. Whatever it could be called: affection, understanding, partnership. It makes Visenya's blue eyes glow. "Thank you, Father. Thank you, Mother. I promise you thst I will be well. I have no mind to become ill myself and you may well remember that i always achieve what I set my mind to."
"And I suppose now would not be the time to argue the difference from intentional and unintentional stupidity," Anathema says dryly to her husband, though she does rise from her chair to take a poised stance beside her husband so that he may have easier access to her aching back. She breathes out a thankful sigh through her nose, and smiles over her shoulder to him in silent thanks. Then she looks back to her daughter. "That is what you can also do, Vis… make sure that those who are sick remain quarantined. If you get sick yourself…" She shakes her head. "Well, let's not have that happen, dear girl." She offers her a broad smile, bowing her head. "You will be sure to leave my granddaughter here, though, yes?"
Tyroan gestures with his hand full of walnuts, first to one side, "Intentional stupidity, fuckwit," then to the other side, "Unintentional stupidity, idiot nephews." He shrugs a bit helplessly, "Do we need to argue further?" And then he flashes a toothy smirk at his wife, tossing the walnuts back into their bowl, uncracked, before focusing both of his gnarled hands on the small of his wife's back. "I know, Vis. You do a damned good job of whatever you set out to do."
A soft giggle escapes Visenya's lips at her father's eloquent rationale. "Yes, I will leave my darling girl here, in the safety of your care, Mother," she says with a nod. "I would not risk her health, no matter what the rewards could be." She beams at Tyroan. "That is always my intention, Father," she replies. "But now, if you would excuse me, there is much to prepare before I depart."
"I will look after her dutifully," Anathema says, though that was hardly an issue. Ana spoils her grandchildren to no end. She does offer her daughter a smile, nodding after her. "Shut the door after yourself, sweet girl." And the Witch turns her attention to her husband. "A little lower, dear," she instructs him as she relaxes into his gnarled fingers.
Tyroan snorts softly, "We'll be out of sweets in the fucking tower within a day." He rises up from his feet to step over and clasp the back of his elder daughter's head and touch foreheads with her, a gesture left over from when she was a girl small enough to come running with a skinned knee, "Take care of yourself, Vis." And then he moves back to his seat, going back to his seat and dutifully shifting to the next vertebrae down his wife's back, "Yes dear." He might have just goosed her backside. Okay, so he definitely did.
Visenya watches with an affectionate look, bobbing her head up and down. With one more smile, she turns and departs back toward the door.