(121-03-20) So Close
So Close
Summary: Lord Pansy almost gets some…until a betrothed walks into the tavern
Date: 20 March 2014
Related: none


Quill and Tankard

This is the common room of the Quill and Tankard, that famous Oldtown Inn that has never closed in five hundred years. The building is a noble old half-timber structure with plastered stone between the enormous old black beams. It sits on a small rock of an island at the edge of the Honeywine River, and is accessed by a little footbridge, or by water-taxi.

Rivermen and seamen, smiths and singers, priests and princes, Lords and sellswords, travelers both noble and small, and the novices and acolytes of the Citadel - all come for a taste of the fearsomely strong apple cider that makes this inn so beloved by Oldtown's people. There is a pleasant buzz of chatter, cups and tankards being filled and refilled, and general laughter.

The fire in the hearth allows for a merry glow and a comfortable warmth from Oldtown's breezy, misty cobblestone streets. Benches and tables offer places to sit, and there is a deliciously toothsome smell in the air of food from the back.

It’s late in the night, and the tavern has mostly emptied out for the night. A few lingering people remain though most of them are too drunk to notice the shadow in the corner. Victor sits in his normal corner near the fireplace with his back to the wall and his eyes on the thinning crowd. His expression is calm, almost blank and there is a half finished glass of wine on the table before him. The raven that normally accompanies the knight is perched on a nearby chair sleeping with its head tucked underneath its wing. Reaching for the goblet the knight takes a slow sip from it his eyes looking over those here silently.

The door bangs open, and in stumbles Garvin, flushed from plenty of wine. Close on his heels is Laurent, as scowly as ever, and six more men in Tyrell armor and purple cloaks follow. The other men fan out in pairs, taking seats where they can keep most of the common room in sight. Garvin rolls his eyes at his cousin. "Oh, one more drink won't kill either of us. You need to loosen up a little." He marches up to the bar and shouts cheerfully, "Wine! Your best Arbor gold. No, red, definitely red."

"Mead, for me," Laurent growls, coming to rest against the bar, and next to his cousin. "I'm happy to drink with you," he adds, more quietly. "But have a care what you say in so public a place, Cousin. It is a difficult time, just now. Folk hardly need more to gossip about."

An indignant squawk is heard as the door bangs open the raven atop the chair next to Victor stirring and eyeing Garvin with as grumpy a look as a raven can muster. Victor looks to the bird and chuckles softly offering his goblet to the creature. "Here my friend you obviously need it more than I do….no flying into walls though alright? We don't want a repeat of last time." The knight looks gravely at the bird who just caws and takes a drink from the wine goblet. Victor sets the goblet down on the table once more and the raven follows it hopping onto the rim and taking another drink while his master watches Garvin and his gaurds carefully. Dark blue eyes follow the Tyrell lord with a hint of amusement as they watch from the shadows.

Garvin giggles drunkenly at the Thorn's words, shaking his head. "So long as the Targaryen knights aren't here to sit in judgment…Did you hear a…?" He turns to looks around the room, squinting at the shadowy corner for a long moment, as the barmaid prepares the drinks. "It is! Ser Victor Bulwer, hello!" He waves a hand above his head, though there isn't a crowd between him and the knight. "You remember Ser Victor, don't you, Laurent? And his raven. I'm not sure why he has a raven, but he does." As he takes a goblet and flagon from the barmaid, he suddenly furrows his brows, looking to Laurent. "Can I have a raven?"

"Perhaps he likes lice," Laurent suggests, frowning. His fingertips drum an impatient rhythm on the bartop until someone arrives to fill that hand with mead, and he slides coin across the counter for both his drink and Garvin's. Lord Pansy's request draws a shake of his head, brief and certain. "Absolutely not," he says first, but adds, "As if I have any say at all in the matter. I advised you against that peacock, so many years ago, and you'll recall how that turned out."

Victor manages a faint smile for Garvin as he waves to him. He gestures with his hand to the free chairs at his table, an offer to join him. The bird meanwhile has almost emptied the glass and Victor sighs glancing to Laurent as he mentions lice. "Lokil doesn't have lice and he is very well behaved most days." The bird looks up eyeing the two Lords and his master before swaying slightly and falling off the rim of the cup. Victor shakes his head amsuement in his dark blue eyes. "He also is a lightweight when it comes to drinking…" The raven tries to right himself and fluffs up his feathers letting out another squawks of protest. Victor looks to Garvin and Laurent pointely ignoring the drunk bird that cannot even walk a straight line across the table. Still Victor's attention is captured by the latest comment. "You had a peacock? How…odd."

Garvin's eyes go distant for a long moment, then he slowly nods. "Ah yes, Lord Prettyfeather. I was eight, wasn't I? No, seven, it was a gift for my seventh name day. Whatever happened to Lord Prettyfeather?" He fills his goblet, as he makes his way across the room, giving Victor a lopsided grin. "Is that his name, Lokil? He's a very…bird." He drops into a chair opposite Victor and takes a long drink of wine, then lets out a happy sound. "Does he do tricks? Aside from falling off of goblets. Lord Prettyfeather mostly just preened."

The look Laurent shoots Garvin is nothing short of slack-jawed incredulity. "You don't know," he mutters as they cross toward Victor's table. "Well, he didn't go to live on a farm," he finishes as he drops heavily into a chair. "Never seen a bird as didn't have lice," is the greeting he gives Victor. That, and a nod of his head.

"Yes his name is Lokil and no other than a few commands and delivering messages he doesn't do tricks. Peacocks aren't very smart from what I have heard…ravens are fairly smart though. Or Lokil is anyway. I've had him since I was nine and he has been excellent company." Victor replies to Garvin in a calm and slightly amused tone. He waches the drunk bird amble along the table in a very crooked line. "At the moment I am praying to the Seven that he doesn't try to fly. Have you ever seen a drunk raven try to fly? The last time that happened he flew into a noblewomans face and she smacked him into a wall." Victor winces at the memory and the raven contiunes weaving its drunken way toward Garvin. Victor looks at his goblet and realizes that its empty he sighs softly eyeing the bird. "Lokil next time you are staying at home. For your own safety…" The bird takes another step turning its head slightly to look back at the knight and falls over with a squawk.

Garvin's eyes go distant again. "Ah! Yes, a farm. I remember now, Mother told me Lord Prettyfeather went to live on a farm somewhere south of Highgarden, where the weather is warmer, and he would have many other peacocks to play with." He frowns, looking at Laurent again. "Do you mean to say, that's not where he went?" He drinks again, then reaches across the table to fill Victor's goblet from the flagon of Arbor red. "Poor Lokil. You shouldn't let him try to fly when he's in his cups. What happened to the noblewoman?"

Laurent merely gives a slow shake of his head, drawing a thumb across his throat as he makes a sickly, wet sound. It's not done in the way a man ought to tell his friend that a beloved pet died, but Laurent has never been one to sugar coat things. And rather than linger on it, he answers the question of the noblewoman. "She got lice, most likely." This is followed by a healthy swallow of mead.

Victor smiles faintly as his goblet is filled he takes a drink of the wine watching the raven on the table making futile attempts to stand up. He reaches out sliding his hand underneath the birds talons and lifts him up back onto the chair where he had been sleeping earlier. "There now sleep it off and no you aren't getting any more wine." The bird eyes the goblet a moment before he fluff up and tucks his head back under his wing to sleep. Victor looks back to the pair and frowns slightly. "The noblewoman…well she screamed and screeched about how her hair was ruined and how everyone would pay…while she was ranting I grabbed Lokil and made a hasty retreat into the background. I don't think she even realized I was there or that Lokil was mine. She was too busy making people's ears ache." Victor shivers a bit. "Women like that are the reason I wanted to stay single…" He takes a long drink of his wine glancing to Laurent. "If she did get lice which I doubt then Lokil should be honored for his bravery. The smell of her purfume was enough to scare away any sensible being be they bird or human."

Garvin's eyes widen at Laurent's gesture, his jaw dropping open. "No! Poor Lord Prettyfeather. He was such a good bird, always preening his feathers and strutting about the garden, looking pretty." He pouts now, looking back at Victor. "I don't want to get married either, though I know I have to…someday. My poor Thorn was married a few weeks ago, and look how unhappy he's become." He gives Laurent another pout, shaking his head sadly. "You should have run away, like I urged you. No more visits to bawdy houses, no more tavern wenches on your lap."

"Who needs them," Laurent asks, though he still sounds grim. "You've seen Harry. As fine a lass as ever I've seen, and I'll trade blows with any man who says otherwise." That, at least, sounds genuine enough. "And as skilled as any tavern wench, when it comes to it. Moreso. A natural." The man has no sense of propriety at all, apparently. And still, through it all, manages to seem unhappy.

Victor falls silent for now sipping his wine and watching calmly as the two Tyrells speak. He seems perfectly content to observe and he glances to his raven breifly who is sleeping quietly. After a quick glance around the room he takes another sip of wine continuing to listen quietly as his companions speak.

Garvin gasps, looking scandalized by Laurent's words, his face reddening slightly. "What a terrible thing to say about your wife! You almost make it sound as if she enjoys doing…that sort of thing." He blushes further, glancing at Victor and muttering, "Everyone knows only men enjoy…it."

Laurent glances to Victor too, wearing a broad grin where his cousin wears a blush. "Apparently he," his head jerks toward Garvin, "Has been fucking the wrong sort of women." His coarse laugh doesn't quite cover a hint of disingenuity there, but it's in the name of a jest, and that jest seems to amuse the Thorn, at least. His laughter is a harsh sound, very unpleasant, and so it's well that it dies off quickly.

Victor's eyes take in the blush on Garvin's cheeks almost hungrily. A small smirk forms on his lips. "Oh and what is it that only men enjoy Lord Garvin. It must be something quite…interesting since you are blushing so fiercely." There is a gleam of mischief in those dark blue eyes as he studies the blushing Lord leaning in a bit and taking another sip of his wine as he watches the other intently. Laurent's words cause his smirk to widen a bit and he nods slowly. "Yes obviously he needs more experience…"

Garvin just continues blushing, trying to hide behind his wine goblet. "Only thing I need more of is wine," he murmurs, eyes darting between the two men. "And a good, hard fuck, if I can find a willing…uh, partner." Now he quickly looks away from Victor, focusing instead on his sleeping raven.

Laurent starts to frown, but instead cracks a smile. A genuine smile, and he roughs Garvin on the shoulder with his free hand. "Well said, Cousin," he allows, raising his own tankard as if in a toast, though he's quick to drink, even if no one joins him. "To drink, and a good hard fuck." He slurps a bit, but wipes it on his sleeve.

Victor chuckles again not taking his eyes of the blushing Garvin. He sips his wine and lowers the goblet before he speaks once more. "Oh I'm sure you will find someone who is more than willing Lord Garvin." He gives the lord an intense and heated look before he glances to his raven who is still sleeping peracefuly. Reaching for his wine he finsihes it off and leans back in his seat regarding the pair of men carefully for a long moment.

Garvin gives Laurent a goofy grin, drinking again, then finally looking at Victor. His breath catches, his face darkening further still. "I certainly hope so," he whispers. "Because it's been much too long." Grinning again, he lifts his goblet and says, perhaps a bit too loudly, "To drink and a good, hard fuck!" The Tyrell men raise their ale tankards, but look at one another in confusion. It's not the usual toast Lord Pansy offers, but they drink anyway."

"Willing isn't an issue," Laurent says with a shake of his head. He lets one arm drape across the back of his cousin's chair, comfortable and fond, protective even. "But Lord Garvin is a discerning man. He doesn't take just anyone to his bed, no matter how willing."

Victor smirks at Garvin and glances back to his goblet which is empty. "I think I will retire for the night." Slowly he rises. Eyeing Laurent's protective gesture with a faint smile. "I'm certain you are right Ser Laurent. He seems to have excellent taste from what I have seen so far." With a little smirk to Garvin the dark haired knight plucks the raven from the chair placing the sleepy bird gently upong his shoulder before he is off to the bar to speak with the Innkeeper. "I don't suppose you have a spare room? I don't dare return home this late my sister tends to…overreact when I come stomping in this late." The man nods. "Of course Ser the second room is yours." Victor nods and pays the man before heading for the stairs.

"Discerning," Garvin mumbles, tongue playing over his lips as his eyes follow Victor across the room. He glances toward Laurent, then leans closer to his cousin, whispering, "You're better at this sort of thing than I am. Was that an invitation to follow him?"

"Damned if I know," Laurent admits, shrugging. "Here." The Thorn reaches down to pull the coin purse from his belt, then frowns as he looks inside. He digs around until it's only copper pennies, and then hands it to his cousin. "You found this on the floor. He might have dropped it there, you would hate to see him leave it." He presses the coin purse into Lord Pansy's hand, but whispers again, "But wait. Wait until you are certain he is in his room. And don't make a scene, once you're up there, or I swear to you I'll kill him."

The young girl walks inside the room. Of course, she is followed by one guard and her handmaiden. Moreover, she is finally dressed as a proper lady should. Her long golden gown embroidered with some snowy white flowers is so tight around her slim waist, but the skirt becomes so wide and playfully flatters her legs with each step of Jessamine. Her long flaxen curls are swaying around girl's shoulders, sticking slightly more widely this way or that, giving her mischievious look. As always, wide smile is dancing on her lips and sparkling eyes are studying the place, trying to find the best seat.

A flash of blonde hair in the doorway draws Victor's eyes and for a brief moment the knight looks quite pale. He pauses his steps glancing between Jessamine and the stairs in a silent inner debate. Heaving a sigh he heads for the bar trying to stay calm and out of sight. He settles onto a stool and quietly orders another goblet of red wine. He takes a long glup of it trying his very best to be invisible. He glances over to the table where he had been sitting a moment ago and then back to Jessamine and then he looks down at his wine goblet taking another long drink from it. He does his best to blend in but the crowd isn't that thick and he does sort of stand out in his black leathers. After all how many knights have a raven as a pet?

<FS3> Opposed Roll — Victor=Stealth Vs Jessamine=Alertness
< Victor: Good Success Jessamine: Good Success
< Net Result: DRAW

<FS3> Opposed Roll — Garvin=Alertness Vs Victor=Stealth
< Garvin: Good Success Victor: Great Success
< Net Result: Victor wins - Solid Victory

Garvin takes the coin pouch slowly, his brows drawn together in confusion. "But he didn't drop…Oh!" Understanding finally lights in his wine-blurred eyes. "I see what you're saying," he says, closing his hand around the purse and pushing himself up from the chair. He begins stumbling toward the stairs, weaving around tables and chairs. He's far too intoxicated to notice that Victor didn't climb the stairs after all, humming a little tune to himself.

<FS3> Opposed Roll — Laurent=alertness Vs Victor=stealth
< Laurent: Good Success Victor: Great Success
< Net Result: Victor wins - Marginal Victory

Distracted by Garvin, it seems, Laurent misses that small fact as well. And then by Jessamine's arrival. It's not the maiden he stares at, but the guard. He frowns thoughtfully until he thinks he has placed the man's coat of arms, then nods to himself and washes the frown down with a draught of mead.

Jessamine turns to her plump but really lovely handmaiden, "Bring me some watered wine and a really good steak, please! I am starving!" The girl laughs and moves through the crowd near the empty seat. She does not notice the man she is betrothed to, even if he has the raven on his shoulder. Oh well, the girl can be absent-minded sometimes. She slips to take a seat, keeping her shoulders straight, and mannerly placing her hands on the lap. She is so beautiful, radiating all that dazzling light with her golden hair and gown. So, the guard tries to remain close to her, what makes Jessamine chuckle, "Deron, please… Give me some freedom. You are standing on my shadow like a heave stone on my heart! You know, that I can defend myself easily!" The guard smiles at her, "My lady, you do not have arrows, and your father…" She sighs, "Yes, yes… My father…."

Seeing Garvin climb the stairs has Victor smiling faintly. He sets his goblet down after a final drink and rises silently on cats feet heading as quietly as he can for the stairs to follow the Tyrell. Of course just as he is near the middle of the staircase his raven wakes up. The bird glances around and spots Jessamine flying twoards her in a crooked line. The bird is drunk too? Its seems so anyway. Nearly crashing into Jessamine the bird manages to find a perch apon her shoulder. from his new perch Lokil calls out softly just as the knight makes the final steps up the stairs. Still it would be quite easy to spot him as he sneaks off up the stairs especially with his raven present to alert everyone.

"COUSIN," Laurent calls out, in the nick of time. "Lord Garvin," he says then, more calmly. And looking back in Laurent's direction, it would be difficult to miss Victor on the stairs as well. "A word with you, on the terrace," he calls out over the crowd. "If you have a moment?" He's already stalking that way, tankard in hand, with a meaningful glance toward the Tarly maiden in the corner. He doesn't know how she fits into this, but he knows she's important.

Garvin turns on the stairs, nearly at the top, and nearly collides with Victor coming up behind him. "Oh! There you are, Ser Victor. I found your…." He chews at his lower lip, looking past the knight toward his thorny cousin. Darting his eyes back to Victor, he whispers, "Second room, yes? I'll be back to…I'll be back." He slips past the man and manages to stumble down the stairs without falling, then makes his way toward the terrace, following Laurent. So intent is he on not tripping on his own feet, he entirely misses that Jessamine is even here.

Such an unexpected approach of raven scares the young girl, who gasps and almost jumps on her feet. However, the understanding, who is that bird, comes quickly to her minds and she beams widely. Jessamine will try to brush birds feathers gently,if allowed, "Here you are! Lovely friend of my lovely man! Where is your master?" She stands up now, really, and looks around one more time,noticing Victor on the stairs. "Here you are! Ser Victor!" She waves for the man joyfully. "I was looking for you everywhere!"

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