|Still A Brother|
|Summary:||Gedeon and Isolde run into each other at Riverrun. It is… awakwardly companionable?|
|Related Logs:||Anything having to do with The Tordane Letters, really.|
|Sept Garden — Riverrun|
|An impressive Sept, with graven marble images of the Seven Holies amidst lush gardens.|
If the old Gods would take it out on Isolde by stealing some her strength and make her all the more jaded in many ways, why not seek those she knew better? The Sept is a blessing to say the least and to get away from the walls, things she knows all too well when concerning constructs, the garden is less of a cramped feeling. The Mire has nothing to speak of that really could be considered gardens and it's refreshing. Her hands clasped before her, Isolde speaks in silence, her thoughts her prayers. Taking a small circuit of the garden, meandering rather slowly, her gaze is registering what is about her and then does not. Blindly she makes her way, lips moving as her thoughts are almost too many for her silence to keep.
Perhaps Gedeon is of a similar mind, or perhaps he only wishes to admire some rather beautiful garden with some very intricate and compelling statuary. Whatever brings him here, the natural-born son of Geoffrey Tordane also makes a slow circuit of the Sept garden, but in the opposite direction. He keeps his own hands clasped behind his back, one with its palm bound in a light bandage. If he hears other footfalls, he doesn't realize to whom they belong until the pair of them nearly bump into one another. Fight-honed reflexes have Gedeon stepping quickly back, and then he blinks, eyes widening a bit as he sees the woman properly. "Lady Isolde," he offers softly. "Your pardon."
Jolted from her thoughts by the near invasion, Isolde blinks and lifts her head from its outward and downward wandering position. Silence. The Gods are now mocking her. They have to be. There is a brief flash of uncovered emotion before she composes herself. "Ser Gedeon…you have it….though I think I was equally to blame. My mind was elsewhere…" She makes no comment on the title he bestows upon her and she lingers, lost for words. Shifting on her feet, she then adds, "I would say it's a surprise to see you here…but then I would be lying."
"Understandably so," Gedeon replies with a small nod and a tight swallow. His smile, when it comes, is small and rather sad. "Yes, I expect so, my lady. You must have known I was somewhere lurking about. But, I hadn't meant to intrude. I'm sorry, I… there are other places to walk." He eases a step back, intending to make good on his retreat, it seems.
About to let him, that smile faintly returned, Isolde hesitates and finally speaks. "It's okay. Really. I would also be lying if I said I hadn't wished to talk with you. Gedeon…" Her hands press together before her and she draws a long breath, "You are still my brother." The words are said and she rubs one thumb over the back of the other, a nervous gesture. "I do not ever blame you for not coming home after the Trident, though I did once, when I was left alone with my mother. But I know what life was like for you there." Better to talk of other things and not the present reason they are here.
He stills then, at Isolde's request, and lets his weight recenter so that he stands a bit more squarely and isn't leaning back, anticipating the next small motion away, quite so much. "Lord Geoffrey did as best he could," Gedeon says softly, "but I cannot say I ever felt truly welcome in his home."
"I know." It is said with a sort of acceptance and sympathy. "I am sorry you did not have a home to actually return to. But I missed you….though I can not say how glad it made my mother." Isolde gives him that sort of grin, half lived. "You have found strong friends in the Terricks. But there would never be doubt of that."
Gedeon is silent, expressionless for those first words, though his brows lift a little for the last comments. "Strange?" he asks, gentle but puzzled. "They are, none of them, unknown to you."
"Not strange…but lost.." Isolde says with a wan smile. "Love apparently knows it's bounds, I have found." She says faintly and then tilts her head, letting her gaze wander a moment, lost to thought before she continues. "I am dead to Lord Jerold…I know perhaps now how you may have felt years before at Stonebridge."
"Yes," Gedeon agrees, though this, too, is a little sad. "That is a truth I learned very early, my lady. Much as the songs and poems say otherwise, it, like everything else, has limits."
"I think perhaps my Lady is a little presumptuous at this point in time. Why not, Isolde for now." She offers him. She rubs at her neck and lets out a long breath. "I finally leave the Mire and it is to somber receptions and guarded hearts. I would that so many things were different. But here we are. Walk with me at least, even if we do not talk. The Sept is allowing me a little reprieve."
"Choice made leave scars, much as they open new paths," Gedeon says. He offers a small nod, though, moving to fall into step beside Isolde. "All right, if it please you." He is quiet for a time, as they move through the garden, his attention drifting to the faces of the various carved gods. "You know what I think of, every time I come to these places? That thunderstorm, on the night I met you properly. Do you recall?"
Taking up a slow step much as she had before, Isolde can not help but smile as he references their first meeting. "I remember…I remember it fondly as blurry as it is. I was very young, but how could I forget?" Glad to be talking of something else and of happier times, she looks upwards towards him. "I don't think my mother ever watched me closer than she did after that night.." There is a faint smirk.
"Up in a tree, in the middle of the night in a midst of a downpour," Gedeon replies, his lips lifting a little. "Isolde Danae, a Lady does not do such things," he scolds in a rather impressive likeness of the Lady Valda's intonations. For just what that Lady Valda did to him for causing Isolde to do such a thing, he makes no mention.
"A lady does not do many things that I did, I am lucky she does not know them all or I would find a few more lash marks where there are already too many." Isolde says, knowing well the depth of Valda's ways. "I remember the lightning, I pointed and it struck…magic. Life was all too simple than…" She can not help but snerk a little bit at old memories, her early years far more memorable than his.
His smile becomes a bit more of a smirk for 'simple', but he says nothing. "Did she use the lash on you?" Gedeon asks instead. "I don't recall that."
"Not when my father was around…and not when I was young. It was well after I began to realize what she was doing and tried to…take control of my own future. I have more than a passing few.." SHe murmurs. Isolde then adds faintly, "There is no love lost between my mother and I…I am doing what I can to change what they are doing to my father's home."
Gedeon listens in silence, keeping slow pace with Isolde as they circle slowly around the stone gods, unmoved and uninterested in the pair of people walking beneath them. "So am I," is his quiet reply.
"I suppose you are.." Isolde says, the topic stirring again to something less pleasant, at least for her. "I want the truth just as much as you…though it scares me.." It's said almost as a secret, as if he wasn't supposed to hear. Her green eyes look to the gardens, green and lush and she clasps her hands together. A smile remains, but without feeling behind it as they walk.
"I know," Gedeon replies carefully, his gaze on the path ahead. "I… you know them better now. The Naylands. You understand what they are like and what their word is worth. And you know those letters were in Geoffrey Tordane's hand, seal or no seal." He swallows. "If you truly mean what you say, if you want to see Stonebridge as he would have had it…" but Gedeon cannot, or dares not finish the thought, except to add, "The Lord Paramount will wish to speak with you, I imagine. Hear your thoughts."
"I figured as much…I have not been well as of late. Sick more often than not…it does not help me here or the traveling." Isolde sighs, "I want Stonebridge unburdened, I do. Not all the Naylands are so, you must know that with your squire. My husband is not of the same mind if his cousin and father. There is good there, I had hoped to find strength in it, but what strength has been taken with their whisking me away to the Mire."
"I… am sorry to hear that you have been feeling poorly," Gedeon says, his brows lowering and his lips tipping into a small, concerned frown. "Rowan is a good lad, whatever his family, I'll grant you that, though he's lived away from them so long, at this point even he would admit he's more Terrick than Nayland. But I fear, whatever your husband's heart, the will of his father and cousin work to keep the both of you silent and biddable, whatever promises were made before your wedding."
"Not for long if I can have anything to say…I may be a Nayland in name, but I will never be one." Isolde says firmly and shifts. Whatever the concerns of her sickness are, she doesn't speak more of it to him. "If Ryker will not fight for me as he promised, I shall fight myself. I tried directly, but I am learning and gaining some acceptance from the Dowager who holds a great deal of sway over her son, the Lord Nayland. My mother may be Castellan of Stonebridge, but that does not make her the rightful placeholder." There is some ire there at the very least.
"I doubt your mother would agree," Gedeon murmurs wryly with a small shake of his head, "but I hope you may find some success in your plans. Stonebridge is not… the place it once was."
"It was never the same after father passed…" Never. Isolde slows and stops, turning to look up at him. "You will ever be my brother, but I have many things to think on and I should retire as I am beginning to feel unwell again. Meetings have yet to happen and I still feel drained from the journey." A slow exhale and she hesitates before touching his arm lightly if he allows. "I am sure we will see each other before we leave.." A nod of her head and she takes a step back, turning to go.
He does not cover her hand with his, but neither does he pull away from her touch. He only offers her a small, solemn nod, rather similar to the expressions he used to carry as a young boy. "I'm sure we will," he agrees quietly. "May you recover quickly. Good afternoon."