(121-03-16) Fish on a Dish
Fish on a Dish
Summary: Thadeus Tully pays the Dragon Door Manse a visit, and is somewhat questioned by Aevander Targaryen.
Date: Date of play (16/03/2014)
Related: Lowly Needs of a Drunken Fish and The Bull Fish And The Dragon

Dragon Door Manse

This is a grand and enormous manse maintained by the Targaryen family for royals and their guests when they happen to wish to stay in Oldtown.

The house faces the prestigious Starry Street. The first story is protected by narrow high windows that stop people from seeing inside, but the windows on the back wall and the four upper stories are tall and wide, making the manse bright and airy over all.

The first floor's main hall is brightly lit with lamps to make up for the shortcomings of those windows, and the walls are covered in rich tapestries depicting dragons, and the acts of Aegon the Conqueror and his sisters. There's a grand dining room separated from the entry hall by a great arch formed by carved stone dragons, and another such arch leads to a smaller, though still huge by most standards, sitting room. Everything is opulent, beautifully made, and as luxurious as befits the royal family.

There are other sitting rooms up in the floors above, as well as bedchambers, game rooms, and even private baths. Like almost all of the houses in Oldtown, it shares two walls with its neighbors on either side, but the servants quarters, kitchens, and servant's stairs buffer the house proper from any noise that could possibly leak through the thick stone walls.

There's a large and gracious walled garden in the back, and wide windows open to it. Those on the upper stories have balconies.

Breakfast has come and gone (or been carried up to rooms for those noble residents of the manse who don't rise early) and now it's that stage of the morning where the belly has forgotten the first meal but it's really too early to call for lunch. Which is, likely, why morning tea is enjoyed in certain circles.

Aevander Targaryen is a circle of one, currently. He's seated at a table in one of the main rooms on the first floor of the Dragon Manse, holding some kind of small, fluffy, jam-filled baked good in one hand and scribbling onto a piece of parchment with the other. Set before him is a pot of tea and a half-filled cup of the same, gone lukewarm. He's in his favored dark clothing, wearing a black tunic, jerkin, trousers and boots. He pauses in his writing to take a bite of the pastry and then do that awkward thing with the tongue and the lips where one tries to either suck out or shove back the filling to keep it from spattering onto fingers and table. Slrp.

On a surprising encounter on the late evening before, Thadeus had received an invitation to pay the Targaryen Manse a visit. And so he arrives, on this late morning, his grey-blue eyes still a bit sleepy perhaps, also a rather slow gait suggesting he might indeed suffer some effects from the night before. But apart from that, he acts all the impressive Tully heir he is. His attire a tunic and breeches in Tully red and blue of astounding quality, the slim sword by his side just for decorational purposes - he looks a bit awkward though in these clothes. Maybe he should have worn his usual chainmail and tabard instead?

When Thadeus is shown in by a servant, his gaze wanders briefly to take in the room, before it comes to settle on Aevander, his eyes narrowing a touch. Maybe because the colour of his hair. A bow of greeting is offered nonetheless. "Good morrow, my lord." His voice is clear, despite the light hangover, and his eyes drift over the morning tea and the current struggle of the Targaryen, as an amused smile sneaks onto his face. "I do not mean to disturb your breakfast" - mistaking the meal indeed - "yet your sister, Lady Cerys has invited me to come and pay a visit."

Aevander chews and swallows, his thumb rubbing the corner of his mouth to swipe away a bit of jam that wanted to stay there. He sets the pastry and the pen down, reaching for a napkin to wipe his hands clean. "Tea, actually," the younger man corrects, leaning back in his chair and letting his violet gaze move over the unexpected guest. "Cerys, did," he repeats, and though the words ought to be a question, they are not. "Well, then, you must be Ser Thadeus Tully." He pushes to his feet and offers his hand. He's younger than the Tully heir and a few inches shorter, but Aevander carries himself with a lazy confidence that suggests neither fact concerns him overmuch. "I am Ser Aevander Targaryen, lady Cerys's older brother. Please, sit. Join me for tea." One pale brow raises as he consider's the other man's slightly sleepy regard and his slower movements. "If you feel up to it."

"I am," Thadeus replies, his gaze lowering briefly in an affirmative manner, before it returns to study Aevander curiously - perhaps wondering if and what Cerys may have told her brother about him. His smile is friendly enough when he accepts the offered hand, shaking it with a firm, but not too firm grasp. "Pleased to make your acquaintance, Ser Aevander." Rolling his shoulders a bit, Thadeus will follow the Targaryen over to the table and take one of the vacant seats, settling carefully into it. "Tea… would be fine, Ser." Although he might prefer wine, but that would not be wise probably. Noticing the glance he will straighten, trying to get all that sleepy look from his grey-blue eyes as they come to linger on Aevander now. "I've just arrived a few days ago." As if that would be explanation enough for his state.

"Oh?" Aevander asks, picking up an empty teacup and turning it over so it can be filled. He places the steaming drink before Thadeus and nudges the plate of various pastries in his direction as well. "Well, travel can certainly be taxing." His hostly duties dispatched, Aevander settles back down in his seat and considers Thadeus again, fingers steepling and their tips tapping lightly against the Targaryen's mouth. "Tell me about yourself, Ser Thadeus."

The Tully's gaze will rest on that steaming cup before him for a moment, and a quick shake of the head is given at the offered pastries. "I am fine, thank you." There may be a tiny flicker in his eyes at Aevander's request, but Thadeus will lean back as well, relaxed, taxing the Targaryen with a proud smile, before he gives his reply. "Born in Riverrun almost 32 years ago. I am the eldest, which makes me the heir. I am quite skilled with the sword, lance," he manages to suppress a smirk there, "and yes, I gave some bandits a beating back when I was a squire to Ser Reynos Frey at the Twins, after which I was knighted. I have been married once so far, to Lyrella of House Reyne. She died in childbed two years ago. But she gave me two daughters, Fiona and Avelin. My son Lucius did not live to see his second year." His hands move to the cup now and he picks it up, attempting to cool it with his breath. "Which means I have no heir." This added as an afterthought. Grey-blue eyes flit from the tea in the cup to Aevander. "My father has asked me to… explore certain possibilities here in Oldtown. I will frankly admit that." A thing he has not mentioned in Cerys' presence so far.

Aevander listens, offering the occasional small nod at each point Thadeus touches on. "Your father is not a fool, then, Ser Thadeus. I am sure he wishes to see the line of inheritance secured beyond yourself. It seems a reasonable expectation." He lifts his own up, taking a swallow of his mostly cold tea and fighting back the urge to wrinkle his nose at the chill. "I hear they call you the 'bull fish', ser. Why is that?"

Thadeus nods to Aevander's remark about his father Lord Tully. "He does, Ser." A light twitch at the corner of his mouth there, before it curves into a smirk at the next question. "Well,… that name… I got it at the Twins. When I was still a squire." A careful sip from the cup of tea is taken. "You know I was quite proficient in the practice yard. Also…", he hesitates shooting Aevander a glance over the rim of his cup, before he shrugs and continues: "It's not a secret that I was pretty wild back then. Chasing skirts and the like. So some called me young bull Tully, others,… just 'Bull Fish'. Seems the latter name clings to me to this day." The explanation offered with a smile.

"Mmm," Aevander agrees with a small nod and no smirk, setting his mug down and lacing his fingers together. "And now, as a man of greater years and experience than you had in your squire days, would you say that nickname still suits?"

Thadeus' forehead will wrinkle a touch at the question, pushed up by a pair of quirked brows. His gaze shifting to the cup in his hand for a brief moment he will shrug and nod. No way to deny it. "I will not insult you by offering any lies or excuses, Ser. I admit I have been chasing skirts these past two years. While not being really keen on getting married ever again. The loss of a wife is something I hope you won't ever have to experience. Maybe I've shied away from committing myself to someone ever again. But there are needs, and I won't deny I have given in to them, Ser." Scratching the stubbles of his chin the Tully clears his throat, his grey-blue eyes drifting towards the window. Then focusing his attention on Aevander again. "What about your sister, the Lady Cerys? What can you tell me about her? She is the most beautiful woman I ever beheld." If the Targaryen should indeed feel inclined to speak about Cerys after this confession.

"What the Tully heir does in his own time and who he does it with is hardly my business," Aevander allows with a small nod. "What he does with my sister or should he come to court her is very much my business. I am sure, having daughters and sisters yourself, you can understand the sentiment." As Thadeus asks of Cerys directly, the Targaryen smiles softly. "She is quite beautiful," he agrees, "and vibrant and full of whimsy. She sees the world more brightly than others do, the colors more vivid, the shadows drawn deeper, and sometimes her imagination can run away with her. She is a young lady who will need protection and security from the cruelties of the world as well as her own thoughts, on occasion. And my sister is a Targaryen, and thus proud and entitled. She will not suffer being second best, and I could not stand to see her feel slighted and demeaned in her own marriage." Aevander pauses, regarding Thadeus Tully squarely. "If your own inclination is towards… variety and you lack the sort of discretion that keeps a man from gaining a title such as 'bull fish', it may be that you are not suited to consider my sister. So, how much should you like to know Cerys better and how much do you believe you can change?"

"That's fair enough, Ser," Thadeus inclines his head to Aevander's expressed opinion on acting a Bull Fish while courting the Targaryen sister. Relaxing visibly when the topic shifts to Cerys' personality. "She needs to be… protected from her own thoughts?", the Tully echoes, not quite getting what Aevander may be hinting at. "Yes, I understand. She is a Targaryen, and has the blood of dragons. She already told me so herself." No offense in his tone as Thadeus states this. When the Targaryen continues, his speech culminating in the final question, the Tully heir just sits there, the cup put down before him, his fingers entwined with each other, and his mouth will curl into a smile. "I am very much willing to change for a Targaryen. She is indeed something special, a gift that must be guarded, once it is acquired." A pause. "But what is her opinion in this, Ser Aevander? Has she already spoken with you? I mean, we have barely gotten to know each other, really. We came across each other twice, by accident. And these were rather brief encounters."

Aevander does not further explain that puzzling statement. It's something he will leave Thadeus to discover on his own. "Lady Cerys indeed mentioned to me that she had met you a time or two, ser, and I gathered from her statements that she found those encounters enjoyable and would not be opposed to continuing the relationship. I m sure a Targaryen bride would be a fine feather in your cap, as Lord Tully's heir a fine feather in ours. On paper, it is certainly an agreeable match."

"Is that so?", Thadeus will inquire, looking a touch surprised, and even flattered, when he hears about Cerys' position in the matter. "And certainly, Ser, both our Houses would benefit from the match." Agreeing there as well, how can he not? "On paper, aye, as for if it turns out to come about, these next months will tell." His smile indicating, he expects it to happen indeed, the Tully will finally empty the cup of tea, that has now an agreeable and drinkable temperature. His head feeling suddenly better as well.

"Then I shall be watching you, ser, and I shall be watching my sister," Aevander replies, "and, as you say, these next few months will likely prove enlightening." He leans forward to pick up the teapot and refill his own cup. "I thank you for stopping by, Ser Thadeus."

"And I thank you for giving me the permission to court your sister, ser.", Thadeus replies, the smile genuine as he rises from his seat, perhaps dimming a little when he, after the required bow of goodbye to the Targaryen, pauses at the door. Perhaps now finally getting what he has agreed to, a challenge indeed. But then again, didn't Cerys tell him on the previous night? The faint smile remains on his face as he slips out of the room and outside of the manse, greeted by his small retinue of two knights with a hearty cheer.

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