|The Bastard's Remonstrance|
|Summary:||While the widowed Lady Flint attempts to smooth matters with some light harp music, Ser Maldred lays out his grievances to the younger Charltons.|
|Related Logs:||Cadets and Courtesy|
|Grand Hall, Highfield|
|Pomp and circumstance|
|5th August, 289|
As Tia recognizes faces, she steps into the hall, a smile on her face. "Lord Ramsey, it's nice to see you again," she greets, with a polite curtsey. And though she too is certainly past twenty by some years, there is an easy relaxed grace to her movement. "Lady Alys, Lord Alric." A curtsey to acknoledge them in the room, though her steps wind towards Ramsey and the unknown woman. Hey, not too bad, she knows some folks here, at least. "And my lady, forgive me, I do not believe we've met. I'm Tiaryn Flint." She just assumes the honorific is understood. "If you wish, I can play, and you may decide whether or not I play well."
Alric looks to Ramsey as he hear his name, moving a bit towards him and his company. "Lord Ramsey, Lady Tiaryn. " The last one get some studying before he just bows. "My Lady, it seems we have had yet to meet before." He offers and just smiles. Alys getting a glance and a nod as well, "Lady Alys, I hope you have been well." Then it is back to the rest.
"You are very sweet my dear lord and you seem to have a silver tongue. Thank you for kindness and formality." Firth says to Ramsey as she takes her seat. Leaning her cane against the bench she is seated at. She then arranges her skirts about her before she takes off her gloves and sets them in her lap. "Thank you, and it is a pleasure to meet you Lady Flint, I am Firth Meredith Frey." She offers Tia a smile. "I would be very happy to hear you play as it music is soothing to both the mind and the spirit." Alric is offered a smile as well.
A discordant clatter of mail is the next music to greet this hall, as the young bastard of the Crossing storms back in. Now so much high company has retired, Ser Maldred is more uninhibited and impulsive; his ceremonial and peaceful standard has evidently been returned to its spot in the saddlebags. Rivers strides quickly up to his seated sister and mutters sharp, acerbic words in her ear. "Don't lower yourself too long in this fresh-carven vassal-trough, sister. Has the Lady Jaimera finished her oh so critical conference yet? I would be gone. Even among the Terricks would we find honester hosts." The sullen knight, quick-tempered, yet slow-burning, seems quite careless of who might overhear him.
"Silver? That may explain why so many are wanting to cut it from my mouth." Ramsey quips in reply as he helps Firth to her seat, that shameless grin still on his lips. Once she is settled, he'll gesture a servent over to see to her needs, stepping back from crowding her. His eyes go back to Alys and since he sees her reading from a book now, he just chuckles quietly and his eyes stray towards the door. "If no one is needing anything of me, I-" He trails off, watching Maldred return in a contained fury. He considers Maldred, "You are finding our hospitality not to your liking?" He asks in the same pleasant fashion. "Such a quick judgement must mean you have a quick mind. That is good, for you speaking words that may find swift responses from some of my kin."
Alric looks to Ser Maldred and just grins, "You think of yourself too highly, ser." He offers, not saying more on that. Just looking over to the rest. "Without vassals the strength of the house will not be as strong as it is." He explains, then setting his eyes on the knight again. Listening to Ramsey and grinning. "I don't know if I could help with anything to help you with this place, since I don't really have any say here. But perhaps I could relay your requests, I do still know these people, and I don't think you should be talking ill about them."
Tia inclines her head to Firth, a gentle smile on her face. She takes a seat not too far away from the Lady, across the table on a convenient bench. "I would be pleased to play," is all she says, and then she sets the harp properly atop her lap, letting her fingers find the harpstrings to start the soft and melodic sounds that mark a good harpist. She doesn't sing at first, merely playing as she settles in to the song she's playing.
"Brother, sit yourself and rest, she is still in her meeting. I would suggest that you use decorum." Firth says bluntly to Maldred. Her gaze goes to Ramsey next. "Your kin was rude when we first entered. He may not be born on the right side of the bed. But he is kin and has Frey blood in him." Her words have a heavy feel to them. Though they are said in a quiet manner and there is now a look of patience in those green eyes of hers. "His words were equally rude, but I would suggest that all parties involved in this conversation curb their tongues and keep them from wagging and spreading the infection that is anger. Tensions are already high and there is no need to poke the sleeping bear with a sharp stick." She grows quiet as Tia begins to play and she listens with a practiced ear.
Standing straight and practically motionless beside, and behind, Lady Firth's seat, Ser Maldred gives the Charlton cadet a cool, diagonal, assessing glance. He appears to hear him out, his expression becoming…almost meek. And just a hint curious. He nods gravely at each of Lord Ramsey's points, and moves his hand - one of very few and slight movements - in modest dismissal at the Charlton's equally ironical compliment on his own 'quick' thinking.
Then the stockier looking man draws his attention, and at this Charlton-sworn diplomat's stolid reproach Maldred's reaction is quite different. His pondwater grey eyes blaze like bogfire. "I see," he says coolly, though, cool compared to the brand of his stare. "In future I shall take the word bastard for sugared hospitality, when it comes from a noble Charlton's elegant lips. And in future, sons of liege lords bearing the royal banner shall know their place whene'er they go a-riding - and each shall be scorned alongside the lowest of hobbledehoys. And they shall lie down amidst straw and shit, and bless the gentle forebearance of Ser Maldred Rivers ere they sleep."
By now the harp is a fine accompaniment to the knight's voice, which has becom almost dreamy, meditative. He does not sit, but he hears out his sister's peacemaking with a practically sleepy smile. Yet his next words are an ounce or so sharper. "Or maybe not. Your new-proclaimed Knight should take *no* gourd of Twins blood for granted, whatsoe'er the colour of its surcoat. The Blackrood has no right, either, to name any man with dishonour. This warlet has not yet begun. Who knows where the swords may stack? Not me. I'm just a bastard. I obey orders." He grins. "Enjoy your new friends' wit and melody, sis. I'll see you back with Graymalkin and the other horses. To my perverse, bastard taste, their whinnies are sweeter than the woodharp."
Ser Maldred Rivers bows with sarcastic depth to the Charlton men, takes his sister's hand up gently and kisses it, then spins about again, on his way out.
Ramsey takes the chastising in stride and gives the Frey pair another smile, listening to Malred's response with matching attention and quietness. He sweeps a gracious bow to the lady, "My apologies. I am thinking it is time to make myself scarce, as my tongue has a way of garnering more trouble." He admits, then adds, "If you are departing again in a few hours time, it is this man's hope that the rest of your travels are safe and true." He straightens again and will give the others a nod before moving to stride from the hall, perhaps seeking to catch up to Maldred?
Alric offers an incline to Firth, "Of course M'Lady." Then he looks to Maldred, shaking his head and sighs, when the men is about to leave. "I don't doubt your ability. Though neither of us currently here did you wrong. Learn to know when to speak ill of people." He says, his voice calm. "Be well." He offers before the bastard has gone too far, then looking to Ramsey. "You as well, Lord Ramsey." Letting his eyes rest on the ladies that are still around.
It is interesting to see the impression left by one's words. Certainly the insults that Tia is hearing are not coming from Charltons at the moment. Of course she was not here earlier to hear any such at that time. She continues to play, though her gaze flits from person to person, a wary sort of look on her face, while nobody is watching her. As the song comes to an end, her expression returns to a gentle neutrality.
"Brother, entreat me. You are not listening to what I am saying." Firth moves so she can get up. Picking up her cane she rises and walks heavily in the direction of Maldred. Her manner is still patient and calm. She pauses as she looks at both of the other men. "If you will excuse me Lords, it has been a pleasure to meet you and forgive me for my harsh words. I hope and pray to the Seven that we may meet again. Lady Flint your music is lovely and I do wish I can hear you play again." She offers them all of them a bow of her head.
If the bastard is aware that his carefully embroidered outburst has caused anything other than looks askance, he does not - yet - let it slow him down. As apparently blind to the Charlton's surprising decision to follow his as he is deaf to his half-sister's plea, he strides out of the hall. Well, actually, perhaps not quite as blind - his left hand rests on a silver dagger-hilt, forged by some wit in Maldred's employ to resemble a weasel's head.