(121-05-15) A Sun on a Rainy Day
A Sun on a Rainy Day
Summary: Alaryn arrived in Oldtown the night before and comes across his sister in the stables
Date: 05/15/2014
Related: none

Walled Garden - White Stone Manse - Starry Street

It is a summer day. The weather is hot and drizzling.

This manse has a large walled garden behind. The tall stone walls have a heavy double oak-and-iron gate leading into the alley behind. It's quite solid, though there is a little door in it that one might open to look out. Near that gate is a stable, a kennels, and a mews. These utilitarian areas are separated from the garden proper by a low stone wall with a gateless entry. It's thickly growing with clematis vines bearing pale purple flowers.
The garden proper has white stone paths and is planted with flowerbeds and flowering trees. Most of the blooms are white and pale blushing pink shades. Near the house is a tall cherry tree that frequently bears a profusion of sweet fruit.
At the center of the garden is a large seven-sided fountain of white marble, filling the air with the sound of its splashing water. Tiny silvery fish live in it.

It is morning in Oldtown. And despite the fact that it is not quite lunchtime yet, the day is hot. The only relief is a few drizzles of rain that start and stop seemingly at random. It is a lazy morning for the Dornish household, but Mariya is up and in the stables, grooming her sand steed. The poor beast has gotten little exercise since their arrival in Oldtown. However, the young Princess will - every once in awhile - come to visit her horse and keep her company. It's a relaxing thing, to brush a horse down at a steady pace and Mariya sings a soft Dornish lullaby as she works.

It's easy to miss the extra steed that populates the stables. The horse wasn't there the night before, or even at midnight, arriving sometime in the wee, wee hours of the morning, before the sun rose and the heat of the day began its battle against the drizzle. "She is restless." That voice would likely be immediately recognizable to Mariya. Alaryn doesn't seek to make a secret of his approach, but graceful and languid steps along the path to the stables make little sound by their very nature, and he announces himself thusly as soon as the girl and her horse are in view. A wry, somewhat knowing grin is pasted on his own face as if enjoying his own double meaning. "It has been too long since I have heard you sing, Mari." The Dornishman's head tilts and his arms extend, inviting a hug as he paces several strides further into the stable. One hand twirls one of the amethyst clematis adorning the nearby wall between two fingertips absently, to and fro.

As Mariya is not in the habit of counting the horses when she enters the stable, the familiar voice behind her comes as quite the surprise. She had heard his approach, but there are always people coming and going in the White Stone Manse and she paid the sounds no heed. Now, though, she quickly turns and holds the brush in both hands - eyes wide when they fall upon her brother. There are quite a flash of emotions that are clear there - surprise, disbelief, a hint of wariness. However, those are all overtaken by the most important one - with a laugh of joy and love as she drops the brush and rushes forward to fling her arms around her elder sibling. "Aly!"

The younger Martell's smile widens Aryn's own, and the much taller man sweeps her up and spins her once around before depositing Mariya back firmly upon the ground, pausing just a moment to slip the stem of that purple flower into his sister's hair, gingerly. "Mari." He reiterates, smile softening a bit as he considers her, then disappearing as he remembers where he is; and why. "These Reachmen have done you no harm, I trust?" They call the man the Crimson Raptor for a reason— and it's not his favored color of dress.

There's a fond laugh as Alaryn spins Mariya around - as if she was expecting this very reaction from him. As the flower is slipped behind her ear, the young princess smiles. "It is so good to see you." Her words are quite sincere and warm. However, as his smile fades, hers falters just slightly. She knows his reputation. "No, they have done me no harm." Not physically, anyway. But, there is a slight hardness to her edges that certainly was not there in Sunspear. The wariness in her tone is well concealed, but when she asks, "Did Mother send you?" there is a deeper question there. Why is he here in Oldtown?

"Likewise, dear sister." There's a degree of relief to accompany Mariya's answer, dark eyes considering her face for the facets she does not reveal. "Holding you here gave us all cause for concern." The Dornish Prince intimates simply, before explaining more explicitly, "Ellia is concerned for you. For the motivations of these people… and for the intentions the Targaryens hold towards our own." He doesn't bother to play it off as anything else, not to Mariya. For one thing, she's far too good at knowing when he's lying. "It seemed prudent to see for myself. And make sure your are both comfortable, and being treated with respect." There's weight to those words, like the alternative is simply unconscionable.

"Yes, I am sure Ellia has made her thoughts on Ser Daevon clear to me." Mariya sighs. "I know she worries. And that you all worry, but he would never hurt me." She says nothing of the other Targaryens, as she does not know their own ploys or plans. "I know mother knew of this when she agreed to the marriage. She wouldn't have given me to someone she thought would mistreat me." With a nod, she adds, "You will see for yourself, Ser Daevon is a good man. I would not have chosen him for my own husband, but that matters little in the scheme of things, I guess."

"Yes." He will indeed see for himself. "I should like to speak with Ser Daevon." Alaryn confides, likely unsurprisingly. It may be a dangerously layered initiative: but it's also exactly what he says, on top of that. "For while she most certainly would not, mother is in Sunspear." There's a disarming blip of a smile, and a single note of something approaching a breathy chuckle, before the Prince turns and paces first to one side of stalls, then the other, pausing to eye the rows of horses without really looking at them. "I promise, I will be on my absolute best behavior." An arched brow accompanying the return of that sly smile suggests that the elder Martell is well aware that that's hardly the most concrete promise he could make, relatively speaking. "No matter how it may make Ellia froth." Something that seems to amuse him as much as her concerns are shared. "You are a Princess of Dorne— the last thing you should need to do is settle."

"I am sure that Ser Daevon will be glad to speak with you." Mariya tilts her head slightly and moves out of the stall containing her horse to watch Alaryn pace. "And I am sure you will be. I may not have wished him as my husband before this, but he is quite dear to me, Aly." He saved her life and Alaryn might well remember her mooning about the Targareyn for his stay at Sunspear before returning to Westeros. While she knows her brother is protective, she will remind him that she does care for the man. "Though he will never be a Dornishman, many would think marrying a Prince of Westeros is not settling," she smiles. "And do not do something merely to make Ellia upset." There's a knowing grin there. "I can always tell when you are planning something that she would not approve of."

"Ellia approves of little that she would not plan." Alaryn notes, the tone somewhere between quip and insight. "In that, we are very much alike." It's the details of perspective and plan that vary, far more than the stubborn streak of either scion of the line of Nymeria. There's a more sympathetic nod at the further explanation, taking the words for what they are and drawing a deep, perhaps settling breath. "As long as you are quite dear to him as well, Mari, I foresee little problem with this." It's a fairly large conditional, but far from an unfair one in the brother's book. "I care little for the line of the brother and sister that bore him…" the tone barely shifts with the casual insult, "And everything for the happiness of my sisters." He explains, just a tad flippantly.

Mariya can't help but laugh a bit at the insightful quip. "I wish I could argue with you, brother." However, she knows how dear Ellia keeps to her own plans and ideas. "You will speak with him and know. I know he worries for my safety and happiness." As for whether Alaryn will find him worthy for Mariya's hand is up for debate, however. She replies, more seriously, "And I care for all my family's happiness. As well as all of Dorne. It was made clear to me my marriage was to help cement the peace. How could I refuse such a thing? Especially when a good man such as Ser Osric died in hopes of protecting it?"

There's a slow nod at Mariya's assurances— Alaryn may not be quite so convinced, but his sister's apparent certainty is comfort in and of itself. "Yes, for the good of Dorne." There's a bittersweet note to the assessment, and a momentarily wistful little smile as the Prince's eyes track off to one side, looking beyond Mariya as if towards a ghost. "Though as powerful a tie as a great marriage may be…" his softly melodic tone elucidates quietly, ".. that fondness and respect is key, or we may have cause for war as readily as argument against it."
There's a bit of a sorrowful undercurrent to considering bad outcomes to Mariya's marriage, much less speaking of them. An apologetic look is cast before the elder Martell turns and stalks sharply away, his demeanor shifting on a dime to observe more harshly, "For when the finest of men is slaughtered to justify evil acts, both then claimed to be the will of absent gods…" The Raptor's teeth clenching are likely visible even from behind, in angled profile as one eye catches Mariya in its periphery over his shoulder, "Such… holiness" he doesn't finger quote it, but it's audible. ".. demands great care." Who knows what blood they thirst for next, these Reachmen, and the Seven. The warrior Prince's fists tighten then release, chin rising as he focuses past his anger.

"He is fond of me. As I am of him." Though there is no talk of romantic love, there is enough to possibly build something from there. Mariya looks to her brother with the respect he deserves as well as a fear of what he may do should he think Daevon unworthy. However, the talk of Osric's death and the Trial hit home for her. She does not speak on it for a few long beats, but she finally says, "No, I know. I cannot believe that the Seven would think it just for Ser Osric to die in the Trial. And I know…" she pauses, clutching her small hands in to fists. "I know now that the men accused attacked the Red Rookery. It…it makes no sense. I know not what to think any more."

"Some men look to the spirit to find solace, purpose, or truth." Aryn posits, turning on his heel once more to approach his sister as he muses, "Some use its images to validate their desires and the demons of their conscience, so they might escape deeds that otherwise demand they burn." Metaphorically, or literally. There's a deadly fire in the elder Martell's sable eyes at the referenced events. "The gods of men stand silent because it is convenient for those preaching their law." the Prince notes, somewhat heretically. "The truth is second to the desire that all appear more noble than it ever was." There's a sad, sympathetic smile that punctuates the more wrathful, if understated ranting. "Justice would have seen the Sword of the Morning cleave each butcher in turn, but even Light struggles against willful darkness. You must be careful, Mari, and watch these vipers carefully, for I fear the night has only just begun— and the night is dark, and full of terrors."

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