|When Ironborn Part|
|Summary:||Their task done, Kate and Nares make their own choices.|
|Related Logs:||Follows When Ironborn Fight|
|Woods outside Terrick's Roost|
|December 29, 288|
Kathryna has done her best to keep her head down and hair hidden beneath the hood of her cloak. While she could have moved faster without him, the chaos seems to have been enough to hide them both, and she's been doing her best to help him along. It seems she's not willing to abandon her old friend, once lover. Out past raiders, possibly raping in the very town square, the burning of little homes and business all around. She's dead silent in their panting jog, but there's a glassiness in her eyes he's never much seen from her. At least once, she stumbles, staring at the bodies of dead or dying common folk. He'll have to jog her along, but eventually they make it to the horse. Deep in the woods, quiet, most of the chaos muffled. She stands there, numb, almost shocked…
Nares is not entirely sure he can claim to have ever been more pleased to see a horse in his life. "Thank fuck," he mutters as he finally spots the beast, cursing the distance he'll now have to recover. He had stumbled once or twice too, but his moments were due to the fire burning in his cheat. Still, he should be able to take a slower pace back which should go some way towards helping. He takes a moment to breathe as deeply as he dares then turns to Kate, noticing she isn't mounting the horse yet. His brow furrows slightly and he sets a hand onto her shoulder, "Kate? Time to go. You've done your bit.." he's not sure about the cause of her apparent reluctance since she's not given any indication of having changed her mind. "Kate?"
Nares moves slightly so he's standing more or less in front of her, but doesn't let go of her shoulder. Lowering his head so it's closer to her's he says quietly, hissing with the effort once or twice. "Listen to me Kate. You remember what it's like. It's like this yes, but usually smaller." He pauses for a moment, lifting his head up to glance around to ensure no one is sneaking up on them. "I don't know how many ships landed, but this is possibly the fucking biggest raid I've ever been part of. The Roost is not just your average costal village. Big target, big force." There's a suspicion in his mind that there is something more to it, but there are more pressing things on his mind right now. Mostly trying to decide between getting the Lady away and returning forthwith to the action, or trying to work out what’s going on inside her head. It takes a moment of thought, but then common sense wins through and he figures he'll give himself the time it takes for her to have a look at his injury at least.
Kathryna blinks a touch more, really not wanting to shed tears, especially in front of him, but her eyes aren't giving her much of a choice. His ribs. Focus on his ribs. She says nothing else but pulls back from his touch just a bit so she can gently ease him out of his mail and shirt enough to get to the worst of the ribs. She's lacking proper bandages, but she does have her cloak she's hidden beneath this whole time. She grabs for her dagger and begins to cut a long, heavy strip of the coat free. "Just… just stand still.." She breathes out shakily, unable to meet his eyes, hands surprisingly steady for the trembling of the rest of her. As she cuts at her cloak, she whispers. "…They're…killing children, As… innocents… "
The physical discomfort of removing Nares' armour is readily apparent but he does manage to keep vocalisations down a bit so as not to attract the attention of anyone who might happen to be in the vicinity. Once it's done though he stands straight and works to keep his breathing steady so Kate can have a look at the damage. He's fairly sure it's not about to kill him, and he's certain he's had worse, but still, best get it sorted if possible. "Yes, they're killing children. And women, and the old folk." He tries for a moment to meet her eyes but gives up and just carries on, "What did you think would happen? We disabled their warning system remember? That doesn't just stop the news getting to the Keep, it stops it getting to everyone." He struggles for something else to say, and then inspiration strikes in the form of, "Keeping the gate open will have helped concentrate the effort on the Keep though. They'll be pushing forward there rather than allowing the men to have free reign." Well, he would be, if he was in charge. He glances back towards the Roost, "they won't kill everyone though, some will be taken, others will have fled, most will be left to pick up their lives when the boats depart."
"…I don't know…" Kate breathes out softly, as she stares at his side. She pours some alcohol from her small flask down the bloodied area, but that's really the best she can do there. Her fingertips stretch out across the curve of his ribs, trying to ensure none of them need snapped back in place. "It… sounds different in the songs." She whispers, breath across his chest, far different than their old times together like this. As her hands carefully examine him, she seems content nothing is utterly shattered or out of place. She then begins to very, very tightly wrap the long cut piece from her cloak around his side. It'll constrict him a bit, but also help hold him together. "Nothing… completely out of place. Cracked, though, no doubt. You… should ride with me. You're in no shape to fight."
Sharp intakes of breath mark the application of the alcohol and several of Kate's probings, but the swearing is saved for application of the bandage. Fuck that hurts and he balls his hands up into his fists as he tries to remain still. It's a struggle though, and combined with the initial effects of an adrenalin drop he does start to almost shiver slightly. "Good," he mutters between breaths when she gives her prognosis, then he shakes his head firmly. "I'm going back," he states with certainty. "I need this Kate. I need my boat back and I can't get that sitting around beneath the trees." He pauses, then adds, "besides, with what's happened here, and Lord Camden courting a Banefort, do you really think I'd be welcome there?" He doesn't express the doubts he has about if she will be, given she's said she has assurances, but there's probably enough doubt and unease in his tone to infer it.
Kathryna finishes the final wrap around his sides, carefully knotting the bandage tight against his undamaged ribs opposite the worst of the injury. Once she's certain it will hold a good long while, she reaches his shirt back to his arms, helping ease it back across his chest as she knows it's more painful than he's really letting on. His words draw her eyes once she's clothed him again. "…Then ride for the boats. You've done your part as well, Asvard… we did this together. Don't ride back into the frey. You'll just get yourself killed before you ever get your boat back." She whispers raggedly, voice still rasping and strained. "…And no… I probably will not be welcome either."
"Only one horse Kate," Nares replies with a faint smile, "and you need that one to get yourself to your destination." He reaches for his mail, taking a few moments to work out the best way to put it back on and arriving at the conclusion that it's with Kate's help. "I'm heading for the coast, and then along to the boats." It doesn't take a genius to work out that if he simply heads back the way they came then all the invaders will see is an unknown armed man approaching and the likely outcome of that is that he'll be dead before he can identify himself. Shifting the armour slightly in her hands to line it up correctly he then pauses and turns back to Kate, as if something has just occurred to him. "When they ask me where you are, and why we left, what do you want me to say?"
Kathryna carefully slips that armour down over him as well. She's gentle. Perhaps this land has made her too gentle. She nods curtly to him as it's done and then looks back up into his pale eyes. "…Tell them… I don't know… you lost me in the fray. Maybe I got caught up in the fight. Maybe I'm dead. If… if Tall Oaks turns me away, as I suspect they will… I'll have no where to go if I cannot come home. If they think I betrayed them. Or…" Kate then shakes her head, still looking half ill. "I… don't know. Tell them whatever the fuck you want…"
Nares picks up his swordbelt and buckles that on, taking a moment to adjust the mail over it. Not that that’s all he does with the time though, it's a common enough action that his brain is free to think. Once the mail is settled he takes as deep a breath as he can manage given the bandaging and steps back a pace. "I'll tell them I didn't presume to question the Lord Paramount's representative in these lands when she said she had business elsewhere and released me back to the fight." It's the best he can manage, but it might work. "If there is trouble at the Oaks, head back as quickly as you can," he advises, tone serious, "I doubt we'll be leaving before tomorrow anyway, you'll have time." Not that he's sure what he wants her to find to the North mind, but she's got her mind set on it and is generally big enough to look after herself. Even if her reactions to the violence of the day so far has left him less sure of that than he was before.
Kathryna leans gently against Gethin now, the horse's warmth and presence a quiet reminder of why he's here. Where she's supposed to go. "…You are certain you will not come with me? I'll lie for you… tell them you betrayed the Ironborn… you… You could… " But then she remembers his words of his ship. She frowns. "This…is no life you'd want. Alright. Go back… tell them that." She pauses, then reaches up, wrapping an arm tight around the back of his shoulders and his throat in an embrace that carefully avoids his ribs. She breathes out against his throat. "…What is dead can never die…" She whispers in a quiet promise.
"Damn straight kid, and don't you ever let any of them fucking tell you otherwise okay?" Nares' reply is muttered, but then it doesn't need to be any louder as there's no one else to hear it. He had been about to anger when she had offered to lie for him, but she'd realised her own mistake in time and so he simply returns the embrace for a brief moment, then moves to steer her back to the waiting horse. "We've wasted enough time already. We need to get you away before the paths get too busy with those fleeing." Or pursuing.
Kathryna swallows back tightly and just nods. She lets him go and half stumbles back, moving for the familiar, well-loved horse. "Hey, boy…" She whispers to Gethin, as she rubs against his neck and then unties him from the tree. She shifts her body up and mounts with one swift kick of her leg. "…Good bye, Asvard." Her lips remain parted, looking for other words, something eloquent and meaningful. But there's nothing there. She gives him one more nod then gently kicks at Gethin's side, directing him back to the path.
Nares watches in silence for a minute or two, until he's sure both beast and rider are on their way. He adjusts his swordbelt slightly, more out of urge to fidget rather than a real need, then turns and heads back towards the Roost, angling towards te coast where he can. Sword drawn he keeps his eyes and ears open for the sound of anyone approaching. He should be able to pick up any raiders before they get too close and identify himself, but he doesn't particularly want to come across any large bands of fleeing peasants. "Back to the boats he mutters to himself as she makes a slow jog, "back to the boats."