|Pleasantries and Profanity|
|Summary:||Jarod wants to make sure that Martyn and Kamron understand that he's the only one to blame for his deception.|
|Related Logs:||I'm Just a Girl, the Sequel and Jarod Nayland|
|Courtyard, Four Eagles Keep|
|The Courtyard of Four Eagles Tower is floored with a fine grey stone that match the color and tone of the interior structure of the castle's yard. Plants have been potted and placed around the entrances to add some color, the greenery accompanied by several trellises of flowers that climb the support columns. The most prominent structure in the area is the set of large slab steps that lead up to the great oak doors of the Great Hall. Several hallways and accesses lead off into different sections of Four Eagles which makes this the hub of noble activity when court is not being held.|
|23 April, 289 A.L.|
Jarod is shown in past the portcullis of Four Eagles Tower by one of the guards on duty and, after a brief exchange of words with the man, escorted into the courtyard proper. The two men converse - decidedly awkwardly - as the ex-sworn sword of the Tower is shown into it like a guest. A not /entirely/ welcome one, though the unease seems as much on Jarod's part as the Terrick man's. He's pointed toward the Mallisters, who seem to be his destination, offers the guard a quick head-bow of thanks, and jogs to catch up with them. He hesitates in calling out, but he's a big, clomping man, so his approach isn't exactly easy to miss.
"Well, you'd be surprised how some people might find the time for such things even when in battle," Martyn remarks, a bit lightly. He then chuckles a bit, "But yes, talking to the fairer sex can be quite entertaining," he offers. Looking around for a few moments, he notices Jarod, and offers a bit of a nod to the man, as he comes to a stop now. "Ser Jarod," he offers in a quiet greeting.
The approach of the big man, and Martyn's greeting of him, turns Kamron around. A smile of greeting starts to rise on his features, and then abruptly fades away again, and when he greets the other man, it is in a decidedly neutral tone, "Ser Jarod." Of course, that leaves some uncomfortable silence, and Kam can't help but fill it, "I heard you had some trouble with your former squire, Ser. I wouldn't have chosen marriage to get a squire under control myself…"
"Oh, gods. Everybody knows." Not that Jarod can look surprised. His dismissal - and the dramatic cause of it - are ripe gossip around the Roost. He offers both Mallister men a deep bow, far more formal than he ever was with them in the campaign in the Isles. "Sers, I shall not linger here long, for I no longer have the right to call myself a knight of Four Eagles. But I did wish, if you've a moment of your time for it, to attempt to make some account of myself to the men of Seagard. I shall go to present myself to Lord Patrek for censure properly as soon as I'm able, but I wished to say now that whatever I've done, whatever she who was my squire has done, Lord Jerold had no part in it. His lordship never would have allowed such conduct in his house, and has sought to preserve its honor with my dismissal and the cutting of my spurs."
Martyn shakes his head a little bit at Kamron's comment, pausing for a little while as he hears Jarod's words. Looking a bit unsure of what to say at the moment, he nods a little bit, looking a bit thoughtful. "That's quite some… unusual circumstances…" he finally comments, glancing over at Kamron for a few moments, then back to Jarod.
Kamron shrugs a little helplessly at Jarod's bemoaning the spread of gossip. He returns the bow with a nod, turning about shy of the entrance to the keep itself to fully face the disgraced bastard. "Perhaps the jest was in a bit of poor taste." He glances over to Martyn, one shoulder rising and falling slightly before he turns his attention back to Jarod, "I doubt you will find much favor with Lord Mallister, Ser. Even honor may be clasped too tightly." And that's as close as Kam is likely to come to criticism of his Lord Cousin. "If I may, Ser… how long did you know?"
Jarod shakes his head some, managing a chuckle. "Jest is about the only proper reaction to the whole thing, Ser. It's a damned joke. I look not for favor for myself, Ser Kamron. But I would swear before him that the remainder of the house was ignorant of all this before a handful of nights ago, so whatever punishment she and I may deserve does not fall back on the Terricks." As for the question, he takes in deep breath and lets it out slow. "A little less than a year. She admitted to me herself that she was…umm, no man, not long after Lady Isolde Nayland's wedding tourney in Stonebridge. Prior to that she'd served this house as a squire for four years - after the Naylands arranged to have 'Lord Rowan' come to us as a ward. She…sort of switched places with him. But until she admitted her…umm…woman-ity?" That is probably not a word. "…to me, all in this household thought her nothing more than a skinny boy with some…decidedly odd habits. But. Well. Some squires're weird…aye?" He looks between the pair of knights for confirmation of general squire weirdness. "Men believe what they see and what they're told most times, you can ask anyone in this household and they'll swear to it on any oath you like they knew naught."
Martyn raises an eyebrow as he listens now. "She sort of switched places with him? How so?" he asks, after a few moments of pause, before he adds, "I'm not sure, but I think Lord Patrek might believe you when you say nobody else knew." Offered a bit quietly. "Your Lord Father seems to be one of the men that has a special place with him."
Kamron nods his head along with the story, gesturing up toward the keep — and presumably toward his own squire — at the mention of odd squires. He draws in a long, slow breath, nodding at Martyn's words about Patrek, "She fooled me, although I only met her a few times, and she fooled the army on Harlaw and Pyke." His lips purse, and his brows draw down into a frown, "Why in the seven hells did you knight her if you knew? Who ever heard of a female knight?" His frown draws down into a grimace, "It's… wrong, somehow."
"I hope so, Sers," Jarod says to Martyn. "Lord Jerold thinks very well of your highlord cousin. He was honored to have him as his squire and wants to do naught but serve his liege lord well." As for the switching, he takes a moment to think about precisely how he wants to put this. "She'd be better to speak on it than I, of course, but I gather the real Lord Rowan's a bit…err…you know…" He makes a swishy sort of hand gesture. "Anyway, he'd been an object of ridicule in his household and figured trying to be a knight'd be the end of him, so he ran away. To join a mummer's troupe, I gather. Rowenna left the Naylands that same night, only she left a letter saying she'd fled to the mummer's and he left one claiming he'd gone to squire. And…so they've been ever since, until now. Her family wasn't surprised she'd run away. As you can imagine…umm…she'd never really fit what a lady was supposed to be. The last straw was her lord father arranging a marriage to some horrid Frey who she figured would…share her with Lord Walder." He frowns. "She couldn't abide it, and it's the fear of being forced into that life that's driven a good part of her deception."
As for the female knighting. "Sers, I felt the same as you about it at first. When she first told me I dismissed her as my squire the very next day, though I didn't have the heart to expose her to Lord Jerold. For my father is an honorable man, and would be obliged to send her back to what she considered her doom. She found a place with the Oldstones but Ser Gedeon eventually broke with her as well. I don't know quite why but, well, you can draw your own conclusions." The way he says it heavily implies 'because he also found out she's a girl.' "After being dismissed by two knights she'd never have found another place, not with any man who'd treat her in any decent way. And so I took her back on. And in all, Sers, she served me well as any squire can for five years. She knows matters of horse and armor well as her own hand. And she's a damn fine one with a blade, you saw her fight with the Army of the Cape, even crossing swords with Ser Harras Harlaw's Valyrian blade. By the end of it, she'd bled as well and true for Westeros as any other man on the field and…how could I not? I figured she'd earned it. And I figured…that the Pyke might be the last place I drew breath, and I didn't want to die with that undone. Perhaps I was wrong for it, but at the time it seemed like the only way I could end things between us clean. And…" He grimaces. "…and I suspect were she simply Rowenna Nayland who'd taken up a sword and pretended to be a boy, never having been knighted, things'd not be near so bad for either of us now as they are."
Martyn frowns a little as he listens to that, nodding after a few moments. "We've seen her fight," he replies, before he adds, "And she fooled her family during the war there as well, I suppose…" He shrugs a little bit as he listens. "And I suppose trying to get away from the Freys is a good thing. But I'm not sure what you'd want me to say…" Looking between the two other men for the moment.
Kamron shakes his head at Jarod's explanation of his reasoning, looking over to Martyn for a moment before he turns his gaze back to the bastard, "I'm sure you're right about things being better if Lady Rowenna," he enunciates the title clearly, obviously refusing to use the title 'ser,' "had not been knighted." He sighs heavily, "You've a good heart, Ser Jarod. You're a good man. But knights defend women, they aren't women themselves. You shouldn't have knighted her." His lips tighten for a long moment, and then he adds, "I won't say you dishonored your title or your oaths. I've come to learn that each man must hold his own honor. But you should not have knighted Lady Rowenna." Apparently, the Mallister man feels strongly enough about this point to repeat himself.
Jarod doesn't argue it. He just bows his head low, to Kamron and Martyn both. "I know that is how the world shall see it, Sers, and likely you are not even wrong. I ask nothing from you. I only wished to offer my apologies to you the men of Seagard personally, and to swear before you both by the Father and Mother and Warrior and my life and whatever else you like that this disgrace - whatever comes of it - was mine and mine alone. I hope it shall not hurt the friendship between your lord cousin's house and Lord Terrick's." He makes another bow, and seems prepared to depart on that note.
Martyn nods a little as he listens to the other two. "For what it's worth," he offers. "I hope the two of you somehow find happiness wherever you end up. After all, you have… both… been my brot… siblings in battle." That said, he doesn't offer much more at the moment.
Kamron nods his head at Jarod's words, allowing Martyn to respond first, and then steps forward, holding out one hand for Jarod to take, "I shouldn't think it will hurt the friendship between Mallister and Terrick. And it won't hurt the friendship we have either. I may think you've done wrong, others may think you've done wrong, but if you don't… keep your head up." There's a pause, and then then he adds, "I would like to meet your Lady Wife some time. I don't believe I've had the pleasure." The younger Mallister offers a faint smile along with those words.
That last from Kamron surprises Jarod, and draws a grin. "She'd like that as well. Though she's not a lady." Pause. "She's disowned, after all, so it doesn't count." On that technical propriety note, he takes his leave from Four Eagles the way he came.