|The Lord's Table|
|Summary:||The Terricks have arrived back at Four Eagles Tower and dine with their guests, Anais Banefort and her sisters.|
|Throne Room — Four Eagles Tower|
|Great pillars rise above the occupants of the room, the ceiling arching across the structural supports in a lovely feat of construction. The north and south walls have expansive windows that filter in sunshine during the day while ornately designed torches provide light at night. The room is large enough to host a great feast for quite a number of people but the tables are typically kept elsewhere. The Lord's Throne is at the west end of the room on a dais with a high, circular window that brings in the setting sun with the late afternoons.|
The evening has arrived and the last of the Terrick entourage has settled into Terrick's Roost. Four Eagles Tower is a mess of activity as house servants speed up and down the stairs preparing rooms for an entire small family of guests and their sworn guards. A feast has been prepared of potted hare and a collection of greenery from the local farms, as well as the continued vintage of strawberry summerwine that's come into season…a local favorite.
With dinner just being set, a long table has been prepared with Lord and Lady Terrick speaking quietly to each other at the end, quietly observing the conversations around the table. Playing the role of host, Jaremy waits until everyone is served before he touches his utensils. "It's definitely good to be back at Four Eagles Tower…" He starts, leaning a little to catch view of those that are dining near him. Due to the sheer number of guests, the typical 'line of lords' seating arrangement has been abandonned.
Jarod is seated with his siblings, dressed in greens as he prefers when not encased in armor. Ser Rivers looks decidedly more subdued this evening than his usual bounding state. Which may well just be just a product of his injuries from the tourney. He's sitting stiffly, a sign his midsection is still wrapped in bandages to keep his cracked rib on the mend. "You can say that again, my fair lord brother, about thrice over," he says wryly to Jaremy, as to it being good to be home.
There was a good deal of chatter from the Banefort girls as they arrived at the tower, though Gwyneth was a little on the sullen side, and there may have been a few dirty looks directed toward Anais. It's a sister thing. When they make it to the hall, however, after cleaning up and seeing the beginning of unpacking taken care of, everyone seems to be in good spirits, curtseying toward the Lord and Lady at the head of the table.
Anais, at least, has managed to find herself a seat in Jaremy's general direction, though she's been self-conscious as well, glancing often toward the head of the table. Distracted, she pushes her food around her plate more often than she puts it in her mouth. "Hmm?" She looks up from her food with an absent sort of smile, pausing to brush a finger under her eye.
With the Tordane-Nayland wedding having concluded, Revyn had made his way back to the Roost and once his horse and gear had been situated and settled, he'd made his way towards the hall where the others had gathered. Making his way into the room, he's dipping a low bow of his head to both his brother and Jaremy before offering a murmered apology for his lateness. That done, he's then moving to his seat, pulling it out and slipping down into it with only a hint of a wince and a lift of a hand to his chest.
Lucienne is here too, her hair braided back with tiny yellow flowers - something that must, no doubt, have taken the patience of more than one attendant to pull off. Her dress is deep violet, and as her plate is set before her she smiles and takes up her utensils. "Can he ever," she agrees with Jarod, pure relief in her tone - and a twinkle in her eyes that might serve as a challenge for him to do just that: say it thrice over!
Raising his gaze from his food, Jaremy swallows his first bite gazes both up and down the table. Catching Anais' mood, he follows her scant gaze towards his father with quiet interest. He opens his mouth to speak, and his uncle passes his field of vision, earning a returned nod. "Uncle, welcome back. We've just settled in…" He glances to his sister, a silent attempt at getting her attention before he speaks to Lady Anais across from him. "…and, alas, we have guests. I don't believe you had the time to meet the ladies of Banefort, uncle. They've accepted our invitation for as long as they wish to stay at Four Eagles Tower. We may have to adopt a new seating arrangement or two."
"How're you getting along, my lord uncle?" Jarod asks Revyn as he joins them. "I'm still feeling the melee myself." He cracks a boyish grin. "You heard what they're saying about you? That Ser Anton Valentin may be the Knight of Oldstones, but Lord Revyn Terrick is *made* out of them." It's a joke, but there's a good deal of respect behind it. His grin turns to Lucienne, but despite the expression it touches his green eyes far less lightly than usual. "If Jaremy won't, sweet sister, I shall. It's good to be home, it's good to be home, it is *good* to be home. Particularly with such fair company at our table." A nod of his head to the Banefort sisters.
Anais manages to perk back up as Jaremy introduces her, blinking a few times to refocus on the people around her. "A pleasure to meet you, Ser," she nods politely to Revyn as he takes a seat. "Your fight in the melee was simply masterful. And /you/ are far too kind," she adds with a laugh for Jarod. "You're going to break our hearts if you aren't careful." There's a wry smile for Lucienne then, almost conspiratorial. "He is a heart-breaker, isn't he?"
Letting his eyes drift amongst those that have gathered, Revyn then returns his gaze to Jaremy so as to offer a smile and a nod of his head, "Thank you, nephew. I must admit, I'm glad to be back at the Roost." His attention then drifts to their guests and to each, a bow of his head is given, "Thank you, Lady Banefort, for that compliment. And the pleasure is mine." He's then looking to Jarod, "I've seen better days, I must admit, but I still draw breath and can wield a sword, so I suppose I shan't complain." It's then that a grunt escapes his lips and he gives a shake of his head, "I've heard the rumors and have need to speak with your squire. Stonewall." There's another grunt, but a faint smile does play to his lips.
"Lord Uncle Revyn," greets his niece warmly, sweeping her smile up to him before turning it back over to Jarod. If she notes the depth of his mood - safe to say she does - it does not show. "It /is/ good to be home, thrice over and then some." Her eyes slide to Anais, and the corners of that smile dimple down conspiringly; she nods, just the once. Then, finally, her gaze finds dear Jaremy and a brow shifts barely perceptibly upwards. "We would hear your complaints, Lord Uncle, especially about the mysterious Lord Ser Valentin?"
Glancing sidelong to Lucienne, Jaremy can't help but crack a smile at the direct nod she offers Anais. Reaching for his goblet, he brings it to his lips to wash down another bite of the potted hare as he swallows. "Is…Jarod…a heartbreaker…?" He pieces his words out slowly, letting them each roll off of his tongue, a prelude to comedy. "I wouldn't use those words specifically, of course, though I'm likely to get a knife thrown at me if I don't drop the subject, aye?" He grins down to his brother. "Yes, what of this Ser Valentin? Did any of you manage to meet with him at tourney?"
"I suspect your hearts are quite safe from the likes of me, my lady," Jarod says to Anais, still grinning. "But I'll take that as a compliment, and take all of those I can find. I do hope you'll find glad times in this house. My lord father and my brother are excellent hosts." A little side look at Jaremy. It's an encouraging sort of look, though he manages to avoid waggling his eyebrows or doing anything else horribly embarrassing. Revyn's words earn a chuckle, even if his laugh isn't *quite* so loud as usual this evening. "Rowan's kin to a poet. He can't help himself. Though I do like it. Lord Ser Stonewall Terrick, master-at-arms and second inner wall to Four Eagles Tower. As for Ser Valentin, I can't say I met him properly, though facing off against him in the last of the melee was easily the most fun little fight I've had in ages. But the better won. They say he traveled to the Free Cities and studied swordwork with the Braavosi when he was traveling as a mercenary. He doesn't fight with anything so slender as a rapier, I can tell you, but he knows a good many moves I've not seen in the Riverlands, so I'll believe the truth of that at least."
"He was impressive as well," Anais muses. "Though the armor plays a role. I was surprised he stayed so fresh with the weight of it." She takes another bite of her dinner, looking from face to face along the table. "I shall guard my heart against your charms, Ser Jarod," she assures the knight with a wry smile of her own. "Difficult task though it may be. And this is a lovely tower, by the way," she adds. "Miss Amelia was telling me she thought one might be able to hear the sea from some of the rooms." Oh yes. They talked.
Looking to Lucienne, there's a warm smile that crosses his lips as he offers, "My dear neice, it's good to see you." Then, he's simply falling quiet for a moment, his attention shifting amongst those that are gathered and listening as they speak. It's Jarod's words that draw his attention and they earn him a slight narrowing of his eyes and another soft grunt, "Let us dispense with the notion of calling me that, lest I invite Lord Ser Valentin to our courtyard for another match against you." Even with the serious look, the words are hinted with humor. He does then fall quiet, letting Jarod speak of Valentin and when Anais mentions the armor, he's looking in her direction, "Your are quite right, Lady Banefort, the armor does play a role." There's a look to Jarod as he offers, "Had it not been for his plate and the fact that Ser Rygar got lucky, I think you would have taken him." Then there's the talk of guarding hearts and Revyn can't help but let a chuckle slip past his lips.
"Ser Jarod's charms are famous, dear brother," Lucienne retorts softly to Jaremy as she slices her food. The talk of the Oldstones knight gives her time to slip a bite in most primly, and if she pauses in her next cutting action as Miss Amelia's name is spoken, it's only brief. "You both fought well, dear brother and uncle," she voices, sitting a little straighter. Nevermind the fact that her eyes were probably shut for each blow that either of them landed, missed, or took. "You think without the armor, the result might have changed?"
Jarod's look is not lost on the young lord, being met with a twitch of his eyebrow and an almost smug smile at the corner of his mouth. However, Jaremy's eyes are pulled away from Jarod at the mention of Amelia, casually turning them back in Anais' direction. A sly look crosses over his features, lowering his gaze to his plate as he continues to eat. He catches the reference. "Well they are very tall towers, aren't they?" He raises his eyes to Anais, doing his best to give her the "After dinner we should go to the overwatch that looks over the land and see if we can hear it from there." He smiles across the table to Anais, tilting his head in his offer to get some time to speak with her. Holding his gaze on her for a second longer, he peels his eyes towards Revyn. "Though perhaps maybe we should invite Ser Anton to Terrick's Roost, at least for a meal and to allow a visit with the new Lord of Oldstones, even if there would be no second match."
"Septon says my side will fully mend itself in a month and a half, my lord uncle, so I'll delay the invitation until then," Jarod replies to Revyn, as to another match. "Aye to the armor. Ser Valentin was a walking Wall. He's got the size to manage it, though we might've worn him down if it'd gone on longer. But in the end between the pair of us it came down to skill, and he was the better man on the field that day than I. I'm honored to have crossed swords with him. Ser Rygar also comported himself with honor, though he couldn't stand up to the pair of us." The praise for Rygar's conduct is said quickly and now dwelled upon, but it seems sincere. The bit about the invitation to the Oldstones is met with a nod of agreement. "They are interesting folk, Jaremy, it can't be denied. I'd not mind knowing better what the Free Cities made of them." More of 'them' among the Oldstones than just Anton, from his tone.
Anais's lips quirk ever so slightly with a sidelong glance toward Jaremy's silent invitation, though nothing more. Even that is quickly hidden behind the rim of her glass as she sips at her wine. "I think a visit from the victor could hardly go amiss, don't you, Lady Lucienne?" she asks of the other woman, though this time there's decidedly more mischief in her smile. "Perhaps a little sparring in fun. I wouldn't mind hearing how the Braavosi style has influenced his own. Perhaps they even picked up a few dances there."
To Jarod, Revyn gives a quick nod of his head, though a faint sigh does escape his lips, "Ser Rygar was a worthy opponent indeed, though I was dismayed to have caught such a blow from his polearm. I should have yielded shortly after, for he managed to pierce my armor and my breast. I'm afraid I did more damage to myself then I did to Ser Valentin after that." Then, he's looking to Anais and Lucienne, the smile returning to his lips, "I apologize that I must bring politics to the table for but a moment." That said, he's looking to Jaremy so as to give the younger Terrick an approving nod of his head, "A wise suggestion, Nephew. With the recent .. events that have come to pass, we would do well to make friends with Ser Valentin and his Knightly House." Then, a grin draws upon his lips as he looks back towards Lucienne and then to Anais, "And since my other dear nephew and I would be in no condition to spar with Ser Valentin, perhaps we could talk Jaremy into showing off his prowess with a blade."
Is that a blush rising in Lucienne's cheeks? Her wine. She reaches for it, lifting the goblet and drinking a longwinded sip, allowing it to hover in front of her lips for a drawn out moment. He head shakes lightly to dismiss Revyn's apology, and her eyes hang on Anais. So bold, Anais! "Perhaps," she agrees shyly, barely above a whisper, then proceeds to clear her throat gently as she sets her goblet back down in return to her cutlery. "My dearest Jaremy may be able to undo what my good uncle and brother could not."
Glancing up and down the table to one and all, Jaremy can't help but chuckle as he reaches for his goblet. "I think my uncle and my good brother are just wanting to share a few bruises, aye?" His bright-toothed grin is flashed towards the table as he muses over his mug. "Perhaps I could, sister, but at the very least the man seems to admire tenacity and swordsmanship. It would seem a loss to not learn a thing or two about his mixed Braavosi style. I may be able to learn a few moves myself…" He trails off, mulling over the invitation, his thoughts in many places. "…I'll have a raven sent to Oldstones and have him given invitation. We've enough rooms and space at the table."
Jarod drinks of his wine. Something in Revyn's words makes him exchange a look with Jaremy. It's more curious of his brother's reaction to that than anything else, though his mood does noticeably moderate again. "Couldn't hurt to keep that lot close, things as they are," he notes simply.
"I've heard of this fabled prowess," Anais laughs to Revyn. "Though I do believe it's mostly been from Jaremy himself, and alas, I arrived at the tournament too late to witness any of it myself." She casts a playfully suspicious look to the others at the table, even as she takes another drink. "He isn't pulling the wool over my eyes, is he? Promising me he's a great knight when in fact he prefers to sit in his solar and write poetry?" She arches a suspicious brow. "I'll be most disappointed if the melee champion shows up and there's hardly any fight."
Eyes more shift amongst those gathered at the table but as Anais speaks, Revyn lets his attention once more settle upon her as the smile returns to his lips. "Has my dear nephew been telling you tales of his prowess, Lady Banefort?" There's a look to Jaremy as his right brow lofts upwards and a grin takes hold of his lips. "Oh, Jaremy. What tales should I tell, hmm?" The words are laden with humor, as if he might tell some horrible tale. But, the grin fades back to a smile as he looks to Anais once more, "Considering he was once my squire, I know you would not be disappointed by his display."
"Close," Lucienne repeats after Jarod, somewhat introspectively as she needles her food with the tines of her fork. Again, she sets her utensils down, loaded and all, to reach for her wine. "Why, Lady Anais, he slew many a white walker as just a child, even. Our Jaremy is /fierce/, like his Uncle made of stone, like his brother made of steel." Mirth sets behind her words, and a look is tilted to Revyn and Jarod in turn as she speaks of them. "Lord Ser Valentin might refuse our invitation, were he to think too long on crossing swords with our Jaremy," she says, with that dimpled smile back.
Bailed out by his uncle, Jaremy grins as he goes back to his food. Slicing another bit of the hare from the main clutch of meat, he laughs softly. "Oh please do tell her about the one I wrote about how the clouds reminded me of the soft pillow I sleep on, uncle." He looks up, fork pressed against his plate calmly. "I unhorsed Ser Rygar Nayland at the tourney and matched lance for lance against the Strongboar with our Lord Jason Mallister. Though should losing to Ser Anton win me another dance, Anais…" He twists his head, gazing sidelong to her. "…it may be a short match." He blushes deeply, slowly turning his head towards his sister. He presses his tongue to one of his molars, thoroughly embarassed in his own, charming way. "Oh now you've done it, sister. She's not like to let me out of this one."
"You could try a few passes with him a-horse as well as by the sword, Jaremy. You two never got to face each other in the lists, so I for one'd like to see the sport of it," Jarod says. Lucienne's words make his grin flicker back into place a bit. "This is the case. We're all of the truest and hardest elements here at Four Eagles Tower. Unlike the Braavosi, I don't think anyone will ever claim anyone here could dance on water, but we're hard to knock down, at least. Though I think we can manage to make not *too* poor a showing if there's a dance here, as well."
"Ah, but if he were your squire, then you could hardly admit him less than exceptional, no?" Anais teases Revyn, humor dancing in her eyes. "It would reflect poorly upon your tutelage." She takes in the arguments from each, smile easy. "I think this time, you may have to win if you want a dance," she replies to Jaremy. "And perhaps if Ser Valentin wins, he might claim a dance from Lady Lucienne," she suggests, taking a bite of her dinner. "Either way, there shall be dancing, and all will be well."
Lucienne's fray into the topic has Revyn looking over towards her and he can't conceal the laugh that escapes his lips, "You're just as bad as your brother, my dear neice." Eyes flit to Jarod, a grin upon his lips before he's finally shaking his head just a touch. Then, it's to Anais, to whom he offers a grin. "So very true, My Lady, so very true." He looks back to Jaremy, that grin holding firm before he offers a faint 'Tsk Tsk', "I'm with the Lady on this one, nephew. A dance for a win. So I suppose we are volunteering you for such a thing, providing Ser Valentin wishes to partake."
"Well, then if that's the case, Ser Anton had better not underestimate me. Though I would love for my sister to get her dance, this challenge just may bring out the tyrant in me. Though still, at the least, it would be good for the sport. If the Lady Anais wishes for a dance, she need but ask, lest I ask her first." Jaremy replies, looking down range to his brother. A knowing look is sent towards him before the young lord returns to his meal. After one last bite, he presses the plate away. "Seven I don't think I could eat any more than I have…"
"Me, Uncle?" Innocence and light, she is, and then: blush! Lu hides behind her drink for another long moment, ducking there as Anais speaks. "Perhaps," she starts, but her voice betrays her again in that whispery way. She swallows a breath, and tries once more. "Or perhaps he would claim a dance from one of your good lady sisters, Lady Anais." Jaremy earns a shrug from his own sister. "Perhaps you should don plate armor, good brother. I hear it gives the wearer a distinct advantage." She lays her cutlery along her plate as he pushes his away, done with her meal also.
"It'll be motivating sport, from the sound of things," Jarod says, with another quick grin, albeit still one that seems more forced than usual. He finishes the rest of his meal, and drink, largely in quiet.
"Elinor, I think, would certainly be flattered," Anais smiles ruefully to Lucienne. "But I suspect he would know who to choose." Briefly, she reaches a hand for the other woman's forearm, a light touch before she's looking to Jaremy. "Perhaps a walk, my lord?" she suggests as he pushes away his plate. "A chance to let everything settle." Nevermind that her plate still holds most of her food. It's harder to tell when it's been pushed around the plate, right?
As the younglings at the table talk of dancing and walks, Revyn can't help the smile that presses upon his lips and as the conversation draws to a close, he's pushing his chair back so that he can rise from the table. His plate, unlike the rest, remains entirely untouched. "Enjoy your evening. I am afraid that I must excuse myself, for there are a few matters to which I must attend." He looks to Lucienne and Jaremy, offering each a nod before looking towards Anais, "Once more, Lady Banefort, it has been a pleasure. You are a welcome sight within the halls of the Roost."
Lucienne hasn't eaten much either, so Anais' plate won't look too comparatively full. A show of solidarity? Or maybe she's just not hungry, either. "Good to see you, my lord Uncle," she offers as Revyn excuses himself. "I might take my leave too, if you please. The road was long on the journey home." This to the rest of the table, given with her signature soft smile. "Perhaps in the morning, my Lady Banefort would care to join me for a short ride?"
"A walk sounds excellent." Jaremy replies, nodding to his departing uncle and the rest of his family. "As well, good evening to you all. I will see you in the morning. After all…I've got to prepare to face the grand melee champion. I do have my work cut out for me, don't I? At the very least it would give you two a chance to ride." Jaremy adds, pushing his chair back and rising. Offering his hand to Anais, he prepares to lead her on their walk, and the conversation the two have seem to have been itching to have.
"Thank you, Ser," Anais smiles warmly to Revyn, pushing up from her chair. "It is a pleasure to be here as well. You've all made me feel so welcome here." To Lucienne, she nods, smile flickering across her features. "I would like that, yes. A chance to see the countryside here as well would be welcome. And talk about girl things," she adds, wrinkling her nose in a laugh. "A good evening to you both," she half-curtsies to the pair, then reaches to take Jaremy's arm. If there's a sidelong glance from beneath her lashes toward Lord and Lady Terrick at the end of the table, well. Who can blame her?