(121-03-05) The Valiant Squire
The Valiant Squire
Summary: Opening night of the play written and starring Lord Pansy.
Date: (5 March, 2014)
Related: none

Amphitheatre - Whimsy Theatre

The Theatre Whimsical Dreams is a three-storey, open-air amphitheatre, approximately ninety-eight feet in diameter, which can house some two thousand spectators. At the base of the stage, there was an area called the yard, where, for a three pennies, groundlings stand on the rush-strewn earthen floor to watch the performance. Vertically around the yard are the three levels of the gallery, with more expensive stadium-style seats.

A rectangular apron-stage platform thrusts out into the middle of the open-air yard. The stage measures approximately forty feet in width, twenty-four feet in depth and is raised about seven feet off the ground. On this stage, there is a trap door for use by performers to enter from the cellarage area beneath the stage.

The back wall of the stage has two doors on the main level, with a curtained inner stage in the center and a balcony above it. The doors enter into the tiring house where the actors dress and await their entrances. The balcony above houses the musicians and can also be used for scenes requiring an upper space. Above the balcony is the apex, which has windows and a battlement-style walk.

Large columns on either side of the stage support a roof over the rear portion of the stage. The ceiling under this roof is called the heavens, and is painted with clouds and the sky. A trap door in the heavens enables performers to descend using a rope and harness. The rest of the theater is crisscrossed with wooden support beams, over which a white oilcloth can be stretched to keep out the rain, and also provide a reflective surface to help light the theater.

There is very rarely any elaborate stage dressing beyond a few pieces of furniture essential to a scene, and there are no painted backdrops. Nor are their curtains to cover the stage. Instead, before a scene begins, someone hangs a sign at the front of the stage, which tells where the scene takes place.



The stage has been dressed to appear as the Whispering Sound. At the far back, a large backdrop has been painted as the horizon, with a blue sky and fluffy clouds. Around the edges of the stage, blue "waves" have been attached to the railing, and the stage's floor has been painted the same blue. In the center of the stage is a small boat, just large enough for four people. In front of the boat, a large trapdoor is left open, so that the actors playing the dolphin and shark can appear to emerge from under water. Characters who jump or fall from the boat drop through this trapdoor and disappear from view.

On the upper stage is a small musical ensemble, consisting of a great harp, a drummer, three pipers, and two men with long, brass horns. As the audience filters into the theater and takes their places, the musicians play lively tunes to keep everyone entertained before the play begins.

It's an impressive spectacle, isn't it, this old theater that's been restored to life. Ser Aevander Targaryen steps into the Amphitheatre, his gaze jumping from the pillars to the stage to where the musicians play. The new arrival to Oldtown is dressed finely for an evening of merriment, still in the black trousers, vest and boots he favors, but with a red shirt with embroidered cuffs beneath. His curls have been more or less tamed, and he walks into the theater alongside his younger brother, Ser Daevon. Smiling faintly at his sibling, he notes, "Not a bad job of it, I have to admit."

Seated in the royal gallery with a handful of his cousins and a scattering of purple cloaked men-at-arms is Ser Laurent Tyrell, dressed for the occasion in his very finest. Pale green leggings contrast well with a tight golden vest, worn over a pale green tunic and beneath a looser jacket of forest green brocade. Above a ferocious scowl and a furrowed brow he wears a shapeless hat of forest green decorated with a large golden feather. In his hand is a pewter mug, no doubt filled with something alcoholic, and he watches the crowd with what seems to be a skeptical eye.

By any other standards, this young man would be blond, but among his Targaryen brethren, Aevander is virtually dark haired. Honey-colored locks fall in tousled curls that frame a youthful, oval face, grow a little long down the nape of his neck and occasionally fall in front of large, violet eyes. He has high, aristocratic cheekbones, a straight, comely nose and lips that are rather full for a man. He also tends to sport the kind of peach-fuzz facial hair that wants, very badly, to be a beard but is just never going to make it.

Aevander stands a lithe 5'10", neither especially tall nor particularly short. Like many of his family, his frame favors leanness over bulk, and he cuts a tidy if narrow figure. Perhaps as a means to make his hair appear lighter by contrast, he tends to favor dark colors and often wears a tunic, vest, trousers and boots all in black and all very finely made.

Daevon's dressed every bit as exquisitely as Aevander is. The pale colours of his outfit a contrast to the dark of his brother's. White and silvers and gold, utterly frivolous attire. He's carrying flowers, a huge, very fragrant bouquet. He pauses a moment to pluck a single flower from it to offer to a sad-looking woman who stands alone along with a smile and a few quiet words. He smiles at Aevander, nodding, as they then make their way towards the royal gallery. They are Targaryen's after all. What was that his brother said? "It is," he agrees.

Keyte is one of those cousins, obviously. She's a seat over from Laurent, garbed in an unusual gown of golden silk with green accents. It's very ostentatious, especially when paired with the golden circlet she's donned over her smoothly-braided curls. "Would it kill you to smile, cous," she whispers to the Thorn, leaning aside that her voice might carry over the quickly-growing quiet din.

Janei has been spending time backstage, volunteering to help make sure everything goes well with the sets. Now, she hurries out to the gallery, making her way up to the other Tyrells to find a seat that's been saved for her.

Kevyn arrives in the company of a pair of other young men about his age. Other squires, from the generally callow look of all of them. He's dressed well enough, though not remarkably, in a black tunic with red, white and yellow stripes on the sleeves designed to look vaguely like feathers. The Cockshaw heraldry, for those who know about such things. He mills about in search of a seat for he and his friends.

"It might do," Laurent counters sourly, raising the mug to his lips as he glances aside at Keyte. "I shouldn't risk it." The turn of his head prompts his hat to slide down over one eye, and he brushes hit back up irritably with the back of one hand. "You've smiles enough for both of us, I'm sure, with more to spare." He waves to little Janei when she shows her face, gesturing her toward an empty seat near himself.

"I think it might just." Cause Laurent to die if he smiled. "His poor, beleaguered face would just crack in two and that would be that," opines Kesha, leaning around Kayte to smile prettily over at Laurent. Her dress is in shades of deep blues, underskirts lighter, cut trim and bare around her shoulders, though she covers them with a gauzy scare embroidered with stars.

Aevander watches quietly as Daevon hands out a flower and makes an unhappy girl smile, at least for a moment. They make their way up to the royal gallery and the gathering of mostly Tyrells already settled there. "Lords, Sers, Ladies," Aevander greets courteously as he and Daevon step up into the gallery in search of a seat. Best to cover all polite bases, really.

Keyte laughs, and does indeed sport a smile that's large and warm enough to make up for a thousand frowning Laurents. Pity there's only one of them. "Very well," she allows, leaning back in her seat — only to jump up politely as Targaryens approach. "My lords!" She is so damn cheery.

"Might I present my brother, Ser Aevander Targaryen," Daevon introduces. "Aevander, this is, Lady Janei Tyrell, Lord Garvin's sister. Ladies Keyte and Kesha, Tyrell, his cousins." he's not quite sure which is which of course, them being twins. "And Ser Laurent Tyrell, The Thorn amongst the Roses." He has plenty of flowers and so he plucks out three roses from the bouquet, white frosted with pink for Janei, yellow for Keyte, and a pink one for Kesha.

Arros arrives by himself, and dressed in his typical sandsilk robes. He will walk towards the galleries, and sit down in one by himself.

Laurent stands as well, pushing himself to his feet with one hand on the arm of his chair. "Ser Aevander," he says, with a nod at the unfamiliar face. Then, "Ser Daevon." His tone is more glum than bellicose when he addresses the Targaryens — perhaps a concession to their sister's uncertain status. "Be our guests," he asks, with a wave toward a pair of empty seats. "We've wine enough for two more." Turning to find a page in Tyrell livery, he barks at the boy, "The gold for Ser Daevon, and aught for his brother."

Targaryen twins are much easier to distinguish, as they tend to pop out oppositely sexed. Still, Aevander offers courteous nods to each person as Daevon makes the introductions and passes out more flowers, and he doesn't seem to be too disconcerted by Keyte and Kesha's resemblance to one another. "The Thorn amongst the roses," he repeats bemusedly for the title. "Little wonder how you acquired that name, good Ser," he says as he observes the scowly Laurent, "but Thorns certainly have their uses. Thank you for your hospitality." He steps over to one of the empty seats to sink down into it and stretch out his legs.

Kevyn ends up jostled along in the crowd and eventually gravitates toward some empty seats in the galleries, along with his two somewhat pimple-faced squire friends. They take the first free seats they find. Which happen to be not far from Arros. Kevyn doesn't notice the Dornishman until he sits down though, when he does, he manages a polite, "Oh. Good eve, Ser."

Oh no! Daevon's not letting Arros get away with that. He spots the figure wearing sand-silk, that stands out amongst all of the crowds. He calls over, waving at his friend with flowers. "Ser Arros. What are you doing down there! Come join us!" Whether he's heard over the crowds is another thing though. He then spots Kevyn and he asks the women. "Isn't that your friend, the valiant squire that the play is named after?" he gestures towards Kevyn.

On the upper stage, the musicians play a fanfare, and a few moments later, a mummer in brightly colored motley enters from stage left. He leaps and prances about the stage, over the side of the boat, then to the front of the stage. From behind the 'waves', he takes a sign and hangs it on the front of the stage. It reads The Whispering Sound. Then he stands upright and takes a bow, before leaping down through the trapdoor and disappearing.


The muscians begin to play again, a soft seafaring song. From stage right, the Knight, Squire (played by Garvin), Lady, and Lad enter and board the boat. The Lady asks the significance of the Dolphin Festival, and the Knight begins a speech, but he's soon interrupted by a bout of seasickness. As he hangs over the back of the boat, making retching sounds, it falls to the Squire to tell the others the significance of the Dolphin Festival to Oldtown, in a long-winded speech punctuated by grand, dramatic gestures.

Kesha is a little slower to get on her feet, mostly due to a lack of springing upwards suddenly like a bouncing ball, which is maybe differentiating enough if one knows them, but not enough otherwise. "Sers," she greets with a polite smile, adding an additional, "Well met." for the new introduction to Aevander. "Oh! Thank you," she says to Daevon with a smile and a cheerful nod of head, taking the flower and twirling the stem a little between her fingers. "He's certainly our thorn, but I suppose we would hardly be roses without them." Anything else is left unsaid for a moment, attention distracted by the stage.

Laurent's eyes narrow for a moment as he considers whether he might be the butt of a jape by Aevander, but in the end he either decides he isn't, or that it isn't worth pursuing. He slouches heavily into his chair again, which dislodges his hat again, forcing him to move quickly to catch it. Catch it he does though, with surprising deftness for a man of his size, and then he's leaning over the rail to frown in the direction that Daevon is hailing. "Cockshaw," he calls out, with no sense of decorum at all. "Kevyn Cockshaw! Up here, lad, and quick about it! Lord Garvin instructed that you're to be seated in the Royal Gallery — the whole damned production is about you, isn't it? I'll send men down to drag you up if I have to!" On the whole, he sounds more irritated than inviting.

"My Lord of Cockshaw." Arros says politely to Kevyn with his thick Dornish drawl. Then there is a Maiden's Knight waving flowers at him. He raises one of his thick dark brows before he stands up. He'll glance to Kevyn before saying, "Come along, Cockshaw. You can point out which one of the twins is for you so I don't flirt with her too much." His grin indicates that he is speaking in jest. That said, he moves to the stair that leads up to the Royal Gallery.

At least they chose different dresses, today. Small mercies from the somewhat infamous twins, hmm? Keyte curtsies far-too-politely as she's introduced, and positively beams at Daevon as she accepts his gift. "My lord is so kind," she murmurs, twirling the rose about in her hands as she settles back down, not even bothering to fuss with her skirts. She peers down in the wrong direction as the Maiden's Knight attempts to point someone out, but Laurent's got the right of it — and it's to Kesha that she directs a very briefly pleased smile before turning her attentions to the stage.

Once the Squire has finished his long-winded speech, the Lady points off into the distance and declares that she can see the dolphins approaching. The Lad becomes very excited and lifts a wooden bucket filled with small fish. Soon a Dolphin appears from below, causing the Lady and Lad to squeal with delight. The Knight looks up briefly, then goes back to retching.

As the Lady and Lad toss fish to the Dolphin, the Squire explains that it is good luck for one of the dolphins to kiss a person. Thrilled at such a prospect, the Lady reaches out to pet the Dolphin's snout, and the Dolphin nuzzles against her hand with a squeaky kissing sound. Giggling, the Lad reaches out to do the same.

"Oh, uh, alright," Kevyn says, following along with Arros. He seems torn between flushing and grinning when the Dornishman mention shte Tyrell twins. So, he does both. He also waves, rather enthusiastically, at…the one he thinks is Keyte. It occurs to him that he might be wrong, so he settles into waving at both of them.

Aevander regards Laurent with a bland and pleasant smile. If he was jabbing at the Tyrell knight, he at least has the poker face for it. And then the hat, with its feather, gets tipped off the man's head (though quite deftly caught), and Aevander must move a hand to quickly cover his mouth and cough. Which was totally a real cough and not a laugh. Not at all. Then the play begins and Aevander looks to the stage, frowning a little as Laurent shouts so loudly and people go jostling about and changing seats after the actors have begun.

Eonn is met as he comes into the yard. He's not too hard to spot, being tall. And so he's fetched up to the gallery, looking a bit bemused about it.

For her part, Kesha briefly rolls her eyes at Keyte for that smile, settled back in her seat and rose in hand. She doesn't even need to say anything. Though their different dresses would certainly help one distinguise one twin from another, one would still have to know who is who first. And because she can, Kesha makes that all the more difficult for Kevyn from the outset. She gives the squire a big, sunshine smile that lights up her face and waves with seemingly returned enthusiasm.

The Lady and Lad continue to alternately pet and feed fish to the Dolphin, as the Knight retches over the back of the boat, and the Squire launches into a dramatic speech about dolphins (they aren't really fish, even though they look like fish, but they actually breathe air, just like people and land animals, etc). The speech is interrupted, however, when the Dolphin suddenly disappears below. The Lady kneels down to peer over the side of the boat, saying she thinks she can see the Dolphin. But as she reaches downward, the Shark suddenly appears and grabs hold of her arm. As she screams and wails, the Squire grabs hold of her around the waist, to prevent her from being dragged out of the boat. The musicians in the upper stage begin playing more dramatic music.

Daevon sets the rest of his bouquet down. "Ser Arros Sand, my brother Ser Aevander Targaryen," Daevon provides more introductions. "Please, help yourself to flowers if you feel the urge to throw anything at the stage." That's offered to everyone. The servant that returns with Eonn also brings more flowers, pansies this time. Daevon looks concerned at Eonn. "Eonn?"

Keyte is a bit distracted by the play, but movement at her side draws her attention; she glances at Kesha, then toward Kevyn, then back to Kesha, mouth agape. "Stop that," she whisper-hisses at her sister, adding her own smile-and-wave. It's… no different from the imposter's, truth be told. But look! "Is that — oh! That's not what really happened, you know."

Eonn has come with pansies in his beard. Just two, woven into little braids on either side. "My lord Ser Daevon," he says. "Thank you."

The Lady continues to wail and struggle with the Shark, which will not release her arm. The Knight leaps to his feet and rushes forward, all bluster. As he draws his sword, however, he accidently knocks the Lad over the side of the boat with a big splash. As the Lad thrashes about, the Shark frees the Lady and rushes at the Lad. Both disappear below, as the Lady falls into a swoon in the Knight's arms, and he drops his sword over the side of the boat. The Squire draws his dagger and dives overboard, vanishing below. The musicians continue playing dramatic music.

Laurent nods as his duty is fulfilled — or, what he considered to be his duty. Servants can see to Tyrell hospitality. Now he's slouched in his chair, eyes on the stage, watching the production with a thoughful frown. When Keyte points out the play's failure to adhere strictly to the actual events, he glances aside and for a moment looks as if he might actually argue. But the brave squire on the stage draws his attention back before he can speak, and he's engrossed by the performance once again.

"Good evening, Lady Keyte!" Kevyn whipser-gushes. To Kesha. He seems to have just guessed. Wrongly. "And, err, your lovely sister, of course." He bows to Actual Keyte that time. "Lords Targaryen. Tyrell." They're greeted in something of a rush, and he sits so he's not blocking anyone's view.

Aevander has a mild wince for the dolphin feeding and the general penchant for long speeches over plot progression until, oh. A shark. Well that… mmm? It's about as the lady on stage begins screaming that Aevander realizes Daevon is introducing him to more people, and he looks away from the performance to offer Ser Arros a nod. He doesn't stand up, however. There's a performance going on and, anyhow, he's a Targaryen. "Ah. Good evening, Ser."
Eonn has partially disconnected.

Daevon smiles at Eonn, although the man gets no introductions to his brother. He takes a sip from his own wine and looks at the stage, thoughtfully. He really isn't one for plays it would seem although he does try to pay it polite attention. Yes, that is his polite face, the one that's not laughing at the farce on stage.

Arros gives Aevander a brief bow at the introduction. Then he sits down next to Keyte. Who he obviously believes is the 'twin not belonging to Kevyn'. "My Lady of Tyrell." He calls her this because he knows her name starts with a K or a C, but doesn't remember either name, "You look radiant today." He'll flash her one of his white smiles, and turns his head to glance at the stage.

The Lady revives in the Knight's arms, and they both peer over the boat's edge. Almost at once, the Lady stands upright and turns away, dramatically declaring that she cannot bear to watch. So the Knight narrates the action to her (and the audience as well). First he reports that the Shark has swallowed the Lad whole, which causes the Lady to wail in terror. Then the Knight says that the Squire is wrestling the Shark, stabbing it with his dagger. Every now and then, the Shark's tail or fin will thrust upward above the waves, followed by the Squire emerging to take a few gasps of air and raise his dagger for another attack. The musicians play dramatic drumming and loud horn blasts timed to coincide with the action on the stage below.

"You stop it," Kesha whisper-hisses back at Keyte, really making it look like they are each other for a moment. "Of course it isn't. It's a play. It's more dramatic this way," he points out. After another moment of watching, she adds quietly, "And ridiculous." A shark. Really. "If that had happened certain people would not be with us any longer." She means you, Kevyn. Who she smiiiiles at in a mildly ridiculous impression of Keyte. "Oh, it is a good evening now that you are here, Lord Kevyn." What a jerk.

Eonn smiles at Daevon. He stays at the back of the gallery, not blocking any views with his tower of a frame.

Actual Keyte frowns. Firstly at Kevyn, then at Kesha. Her frown's a bit of a joke, really, sulky and childish with a pouty bottom lip. "Lord of WrongHall," she mutters, folding her arms across the silky fabric of her gown as Arros sits beside her. "Thankyou, Ser." A half-hearted, grudging smile threatens to overtake her frown, and she does her best not to give in by focusing on the play. "Everybody knows sharks are afraid of dolphins," she quips sullenly back to her twin.

"Oh, seven," Aevander murmurs under his breath, his palm rubbing over his mouth as he watches the story on stage become increasingly absurd. The hand moves from his mouth to his eyes as fins and tails begin popping up from the water during the squire's 'battle'. It's all just a bit painful.

Laurent turns back to the twins Tyrell, clearing his throat loudly enough to draw attention. Quieting people? Not likely for the ill-mannered Thorn. Rather, once he has Kevyn's attention, he gives a meaningful tilt of his head toward the true Keyte. His grim look suggests he thinks the lad might be addled (though he himself has made the same mistake often enough, and will again), and then he turns back to lean forward against the rail to watch the scene unfold.

The Knight continues to narrate the dramatic struggle between the mostly unseen Squire and Shark, as the Lady frets and swoons. Finally, the Knight announces the Squire has delivered a crippling blow, and the Shark has spat out the Lad. He reaches down to haul the Squire aboard the boat, and all three peer anxiously overboard, looking for some sign of the Lad. The music falls to a low, tense level, as the anticipation mounts.

Daevon stifles a yawn and sips some more of his wine.

Kevyn beams back at Kesha and her Keyte impression, apparently not finding it ridiculous. Until he catches Laurent's signal, and then looks over at Actual Keyte. Then he flushes again. "Oh, err, Lady Keyte. Sorry. It's…err…dark. You also look lovely. Did I say that before?" Probably. He makes himself stop talking, and focus on the play. Leaning forward as if to see under the stage, at what's become of the poor Valorous Squire in his battle with the shark.

Even though she was helping set things up and paint the sets, Janei watches the play with all the rapt attention as if she's seeing it for the first time.

Keyte? Kesha? Who cares? Arros is here to charm the figurative pants off of a Tyrell twin. He's barely paying attention to the play. Instead, he leans over slightly to whisper into Keyte's ear. He will, of course, keep a respectful distance between his leg and Keyte's, but once he is done whispering he glances over her face with his dark indigo eyes and indulges her with another smile.

Suddenly, the Dolphin emerges from below, with the Lad riding on its back. The Knight and Squire help to haul the Lad aboard, and the Lady makes a big fuss over the Squire's bravery and valor. She insists he must be rewarded for rescuing her young nephew, leaning in to give him a kiss. The Knight agrees, telling the squire to take a knee. But when he goes to draw his sword, he finds it gone, and the Lady reminds him that he dropped it when he knocked the Lad overboard. The Squire, on one knee, looks disappointed, but suddenly, the Dolphin emerges again, this time with the Knight's sword in its mouth. The Knight takes the sword, then dubs the Squire a knight, as the musicians play another fanfare. All six actors (including those playing the Dolphin and Shark) then move to the front of the stage to take their bows.

Daevon throws flowers onto the stage, because that's what's done, isn't it? Not only that but it's the part he's been looking forward to, practicing his skill at tossing non-aerodynamic weapons! Not that he's actually aiming for anyone. "So, brother, what did you think?" he asks.

Yep. Wine seems like a good idea. Aevander picks up his own goblet and has a generous swallos, himself. He claps politely as the actors take their bows, but he's also shaking his head a little. He likely would have done better watching the more amusing antics unfolding between Lady Keyte, Lady Kesha, Squire Kevyn and Ser Arros. "Ah. Well. It was… certainly a play," he answers Daevon, "with actors and sets and all."

A half-dozen servants in Tyrell livery appear in the Royal Gallery, carrying what must seem to be every purple pansy in Oldtown, purchased by Ser Laurent for this occasion. He takes a handful himself, then angrily instructs the staff to pass out the rest to the guests. The ones in his hand he tosses toward, if not onto, the stage. They rain down into the yard and the lower galleries, onto small heads and high, but he looks smug about the effort just the same.

Kevyn is sitting with the Tyrells and Targaryens, and Ser Arros, watching the play. And Keyte. Or is it Kesha? He watches them both, just to be safe. He's not so absorbed in that that he's tuned out of the drama, though. It is squire-related. As the mummers head to the stage to bow, he stands to clap enthusiastically, and drops a pansy down in their direction.

"Sharks eat dolphins," Kesha tells her twin, knowing absolutely nothing about the subject. But then neither does Keyte. Probably. Which is about the last bit of fun she has, since Laurent totally blows her cover like the fun-ruiner he is. She shoots her cousin a Look, frowning unhappily and sitting back with a sigh, even if Kevyn's flustering is mildly entertaining for a moment. Oh well. Looks like they boys can entertain by fighting each other for Keyte's attention, at least. She claps as the play comes to an end.

Daevon chuckles at Aevander. "It was," he agrees. "My brother, the diplomat. I must say I found the actual experience far more exciting, and I spent most of that…" Well Daevon gets extremely seasick, which is not something he needs to go into. He smiles at Laurent. "So that's why I couldn't find any pansy's for any amount of money."

Really, when is wine not a good idea? Never. At least Viggo appears to think so with a goblet so full that he is forced to he sip off the top of it. Forced! The serving girl overfilled it and there is no reason to waste it by pouring it out. He is also just undignified enough to make this work. A second goblet (filled to the appropriate amount) is passed to Katya with a wry grin, "Do you think they found enough flowers?" He crosses his dark booted feet at the knee, dressed in a gold-threaded doublet and dark leggings.

One my one, the actors bow, then drop through the trap door, vanishing from sight. Naturally, Garvin is the last, taking an extra three bows. Then he too disappears, and the musicians begin playing a lively tune once more.

The story continues with After the Play: http://gobmush.wikidot.com/log:121-03-05-after-the-play

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