(121-05-05) What's Next?
What's Next?
Summary: Kevyn ponders his next move now that he's a knighted man, after Viggo's beat him up a bit.
Date: 05/05/2014 (DD/MM/YYYY)
Related: The Knighting of Kevyn Cockshaw

Tourney Grounds — The Reach

The Tourney Grounds stand just outside of the walls of Oldtown. There is a raised platform of several levels for noble viewers, with space for comfortable chairs and little tables to be set in place, and tall posts for canopies to be hung to keep the sun off. Not far stands the great board where the lists are kept. On the far side of the grounds rough tiered benches are available for the smallfolk, and past them there's a flat field for the knights to erect their pavilions in the grass.

The long log rail for the jousts stands right before the Lords' and Ladies' platform, with the space for the melee just beyond it. The archery butts are mounded at the Southwest edge of the grounds, where a great meadow of purple-red fireweed spreads off into the distance. The rough little narrow road to Blackcrown cuts through it.

Kevyn has continued in regular swordplay practice sessions with Viggo, even after his knighting. They've just finished one now. Kevyn has treated to the sidelines of the vacant field to gulp some water, and nurse a few new bruises.

He may be a knight now, but to Viggo's eyes there is still much for his no-longer-a-squire but still a cousin to learn. Kevyn's practices are attended with a focus that he rarely knew in his teacher's less than sober days prior, one which leaves lungs burning and the elder Cockshaw grinning. His blade flits about like quicksilver, catching the late afternoon light, before he shealths it with a heavy sound. "Better," he judges mildly.

Kevyn might've shown a touch of surprise at Viggo's uptick in sobriety. He hasn't mentioned it, really, but he's not the sort who's particularly good at hiding things like surprise. "Thanks," he pants, after gulping some more water. He then sets about putting away his equipment. The sword is a gift from his father, from the forges at Cockleswhent. His armor is still in various stages of being made and fitted, but he's slowly acquiring pieces of it. "Do you figure they Dornish will keep their word? On the matter of the Blackmont's ransom."

Happily, Viggo isn't a man prone to particularly large amounts of self reflection and if he doesn't reach for the cup as often these days, his hand finds a blade more often. "You new blade suits you," he offers, leaning back on a heel as he gets a good look at it in the light. "Aye. I don't expect I'll escape the blade in my back so that they might take it back, but they'll pay the ransom. Else they'll shame themselves and the dead Ser Osric."

Kevyn nods, finding an upturned barrel to sit on and take a bit of rest. "I hope that's the last of it, when that's done." Not that he sounds overly optimistic. "Have you…have you thought much on what you'll do after it's paid? Are you staying in Oldtown?"

Smoothing his fingers over the curves of his moustache pensively, Viggo shakes his head at the thought of it being done. "Nay. I think it's not likely to ever be done. Too much blood soaks the soil," he opines ruefully. "There's still the matter of the marriage to be settled. Someone will have to marry a damn Dorne." His brows lift at Kevyn's question. "Honestly cousin, I hadn't thought too long upon it beyond perhaps getting us a bit of a permanent dwelling here."

"Too much blood. Aye." Kevyn seems to agree on that point, though it's not a point he seems to want to expand on. He makes a face at mention of marrying the Dornes, though it's not something he seems too worried about. He's pretty low on the lists of important Cockshaws, so hopefully many will have that 'honor' thrust upon them before anyone thinks of him. He nods, though the 'us' part makes him shrug a little. "I was actually thinking..well, I've been thinking about what I might do with myself if I stay in the city. My father offered me a place among his men who patrol the borders but…" He shrugs. The work holds little appeal to him, plainly.

"You've had enough of the borders," Viggo surmises with a lift of his dark brows.

"I'm not sure anything I'd do there would be particularly good work," Kevyn replies. "From what I've seen of them." He leaves it at that. "I've been thinking…I know I've earned my spurs, by I feel I've still much to learn, about the knighthood, and warcraft. I was thinking…the Tyrells are our liege lords, and seem well-established here, and Lord Garvin and Ser Laurent seem to think…well, they seem to think all right of me, so I was thinking that perhaps I should ask…" He trails off, trying to figure out the best way to put this.

"It is fine work." Viggo's tone books no arguement on that regard, lines showing in his face where before they lacked. Then, his tone softens, "But that does not mean that it is the work for you. Nay, I wouldn't see you there either, cousin." Lifting a hand on his pommel, he slides his thumb over the patterning hammered in a thoughtful gesture. Kevyn's thinking pulls an amused lift of his lips, showing more in the curve of his moustache than anything. "There are easier ways to ask your pretty Lady to marry you, you know. I'm certain your father would approve the match, as well as our house."

Kevyn doesn't argue. He's not really one to argue, when he disagrees. He just stoically tucks away whatever he's thinking of the border, and speaks no more on it. It's a beat before he says anything more at all, though. Mention of Keyte, even obliquely, makes him flush. "I'm not sure she wants me to win her. But…well…I was thinking being in the good graces of the Tyrells might serve me well. I was thinking that I might…if I remain in Oldtown, enter their service. As a household knight for their branch in Oldtown or…well, whatever duties they'd put me to, I suppose, but likely that."

Chuckling softly, Viggo notes but lets the flush of his cousin's cheeks remain without comment. "I'll not argue that being in the graces of our liege lords is a fine place to be, but if your aim is a daughter of the house… She might not see you so well in their service lad. It isn't the finest position to woo from," he offers with a wave of his hand. "What do you seek to learn, ask yourself that first. Being a glorified guard will do you no good but each man makes his choice to serve." The corners of his moustache quirk, a little sadly.

"Better sword work, and better horse work, though I can learn those under most knights," Kevyn says. "As for being a glorified guard…" He flushes again. "I thought of asking after working with the Watch, like cousin Alys. It seems honest work, and not so bad as all that." He shrugs. "I wasn't sure I wanted to be in such direct employ of the Hightowers, though. But it seemed honest service, toward justice, or at least trying to be. I suppose that's what I seek to learn. What use I can be, that I might feel is to the good. We shall always be ruled by the Tyrells, and they've seemed good lords to us, for the most part. And their lands are large, and they're more involved in matters of the Reach than just brute work. Even if I don't…whether I court Lady Keyte or not, I hope to see more of how a knight might apply himself that's not just…" He shrugs. "Not forever. Just for a year, perhaps. When that's done, perhaps I could take what I'd learn back to Cockleswhent. And if the lady…" Another shrug. "Who knows what that'll be, but a year to know her better seems to the good."

"Aye, if that is the path you'll take… then serving the Tyrell's is a fine purpose. As you say they have been good lords to us for the most part," Viggo agrees, voice thinning on the most. Recent events weight a little on his mind, areas where they might have been better served — but one does not question the king. "That's not the route of the tourney knight or a border guard?" He wonders with arch amusement. "Even that will not serve a man forever." The admittance comes with a sigh. "Not even I." He's a different path waiting for him now. "If the Lady has much sense in that fair head of hers, she'll see you to be a fine man and knight. Just be careful you don't collect that sister of hers instead, nothing bad for relations like getting the wrong sister." There is worrisome experience in his voice there, even if a smile graces his mouth again.

Kevyn shrugs. "There's nothing wrong with either of those, I'd just like to see what else a man might make for himself. Don't think I'd make much gold on the tourney circuit right now, anyhow." The comment about the Tyrell twins makes him chuckle. "They aren't that hard to tell apart…I don't think." Upon second thought, they are. He frowns, and tries not to dwell too much on that. "I…umm…I'll be careful. You think your lord father will be all right with it, then?"

"Certainly not our Reach circuits if these warrior women have their way. I missed their boughts at the last, but…" Viggo grins broadly in amusement. "I'll bet our Alys would have been chomping at the bit in her own days." He lifts his brows as Kevyn chuckles and then reconsiders. "Do so. I'll write him a letter that you are drawn to serve our liege…" He offers his cousins a cheery wink, "At least for a time."

Kevyn grins slight at Viggo, inclining his head deep. "Thanks, cousin," he says simply. Though the man's approval clearly means a good deal to him. Kevyn and Viggo are lingering on the outskirts of the field. They look like they've been sparring, though they're plainly finished with that now. It's later in the day, still light, but getting on enough that the sun's gotten less oppressive.

Laughing warmly, Viggo waves away the thanks and gives his cousin a familiar swat on the shoulder. "Tried yet true, cousin. You'll meet our words well," he bids proudly. "Once you get that bladework down at least." It's a little dig, familiar as the swat to the shoulder and equally gently meant.

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