(121-05-30) Blood of the Ocean
Blood of the Ocean
Summary: Elionys visits Riderch again, and share some surprising things. And a disturbing portent.
Date: Date of play (30/05/2014)
Related: Some? Lots?


Luthier's Manse Appletree Wynd

Fri May 30, 121 ((Fri May 30 11:36:32 2014))

It is a summer day. The weather is warm and overcast.

This modest stone manse is well appointed, with three levels, each about forty feet square. This lowest floor is open, except for the kitchens. They are separated by a wall of polished maple-wood that matches the golden-bright floors. The other walls are plastered a fresh and creamy white.

The room is dominated by is a massive fireplace with colourful tiles set around it and on its hearth. It stands on the wall that's shared with the kitchen and so lies more or less in the center of the house. There's a long dining table, painted blue, near the kitchen door, and a sideboard to match it.

There are no windows facing the wynd, but an arched door and wide windows give a view of a walled garden in the back. A set of couches and chairs in pale blue leather are placed there, offering a pleasant spot to converse and take in the view. To one side of them is the rather narrow staircase.

It's been a busy few days for this house. Things have been rearranged, bags have been packed, unpacked. And packed again by the looks of things. As it stands, the 'Lord' of the manse has taken to wearing a comfortable black hunting tunic bearing his sigil, complete with innumerable patches of boiled black leather, reinforced by little metal rivulets as he can be seen leaning over the dining table with a messy stack of maps all unfurled and laid out together. He has a parchment with a quill and inkwell that he scratches out patterns on, the careful focus of his eyes drifting between the already-made maps and his own work.

It's a breezy early afternoon and a faint draft wafts through the windows and open doors of the home. The smell of some great roasted bird mingles with the scents of the outdoors, the source of this coming from the kitchens. A couple Blackwood men are seen in the corner of the dining hall, chatting with each other about the weather, their families, and several things that are clearly of great humor to them. Riderch, however, appears neither bothered by this, nor is he paying attention.

A sturdy middle-aged maid is seen exiting the kitchens with a tray containing a steaming pot of — something, and a covered dish.

A gentle rap of the door is soon followed by the arrival of Elionys, not bothering to attempt the whole business of being announced. Instead she asks after the Lord of the house, and then slowly makes her way into the room in which he works. Today, at least for now, she wears a gown the color of soot, not quite black but nearly there, cinched at the waist with a black cloth belt that's embroidered with dragons. The Targaryen is naturally pale, but today she seems especially so as she offers a quiet, "Good morning," to the Knight of Ravens.

The milling about continues, at least for the moment. As the door is approached, the two Blackwood men who were chattering away in their relaxed state stop what they are doing, for a moment. It's a lanky fellow, with enough scars on his face to indicate that he's been on the receiving end of a few nasty exchanges, but he gives a hasty bow of his head. "Oh — uh." He knows who she is. "The Lord will see you." He doesn't even bother to check if that's the case. He doesn't have to, though.

Both men hold the doors open to admit Elionys and anyone she might have brought with them and for the moment, cease gossiping. One gives a silly grin to the other though, once she's past them, and a distant glance to where their Lord stands, absorbed in whatever sort of cartography project he has thrown himself into.

Riderch, for his part, is momentarily distracted by the maid. "Nell, you remembered the pot?" He whips his head about to study the tray. "Oh, all right. You know how she is. Probably will have to leave it just at her door too." He notes with a bit of a sigh. "She doesn't seem that hobbled which is a good thing. I d—" He catches something. Maybe it's a look in the maid's eye as she glances off at the arrived Princess. And maybe it's just that he heard Elionys' greeting."

OHO. Riderch's head whips about like a bird's, to spy the owner of said voice. "As surprises go, Princess — this is one of the better ones." He notes, as he quickly takes stock of the situation. The maid scrambles to place her tray down just to curtsey.

There are guards with Elionys, a pair of them, as is so often the case, those men remain out in the entryway rather than follow the Princess through the doors and into the room where Riderch and his maps are. The young woman herself looks tense, and a little tired, but the greeting from Riderch draws a small smile from her. "It's good to see you as well, Ser. If I am not too great an interruption, I was hoping that I might speak with you? I… I know there is likely a great deal you need do before we leave for the trip, but it felt important." This isn't the usual silly nervousness or uncertainty, it's a new flavor of uncertainty, and she appears unsettled by it.

It looks like there's a little friendly guard-on-guard overtures as the scarred Blackwood man gives a cheery grin to Elionys' as the two Riverlanders have managed to so far behave themselves. Maybe they're talking about the finer points of sworn service.

Riderch himself has less of the tired mien he's been displaying lately which is a good thing, if you ask most who know him. "That'll do, Nell." He offers to the maid who briskly takes up the tray and starts for the stairs. "To the Lady then, straightaway m'lord. Your Grace." The maid replies. She makes herself scarce.

Blackwood himself, meanwhile, frowns a little at the maps and the quill. It looks as though he's trying to draw a bunch of possible paths through a crudely-rendered drawing of the sea. The quill is dropped on the parchment though. "You're not interrupting me doing anything useful if that's what you're asking." He says, bemusedly, but there is a look of inquiry in his eyes. "I was just preparing. Um, this isn't about anything distressing, I hope? Is Lord Tyrell bothering you again?" He asks, sounding a little incredulous with the question itself. "And of course, of course."

Elionys looks up to the middle-aged maid with that same faint smile, nodding to the older woman before her gaze goes back to the Raven Knight. "It might be," she answers the question of whether or not the matter is distressing, eyes lowering deliberately to the maps to try and hide just how distressed she is. "Lord Loryn? Oh, no, he's not spoken a word to me since the day he asked me to work at the theater. I think he's finally been well corrected," her shoulders gather in a shrug that suggests she isn't sure. "No, it's not about him." Steps carry her to the edge of the table, near enough that she can draw a finger along the edge of a map. "I had a dream," she begins without looking up, likely knowing how that sounds.

There's an all-too-knowing narrowing of Riderch's eyes here that Elionys might be able to pick up on at this point when the issue of Loryn is discussed. There's clearly a lack of surprise there and an astute observer would start wondering things.

As the maid disappears with a scurry, the man in black pulls a chair out from the table and gestures for Elionys to sit, clearing off a spot on the table. "Can I get you something?" No servants called, he seems to be the type who enjoys doing this himself.

And then the statement about the dream hits him. "Hmm. I'm sorry if it wasn't a good one. You wouldn't be telling me if it was, I'm certain?" He says this as sort of a breezy, conversational thing, indicating that maybe, just maybe, old Riderch has heard a few things about a few things in his day. "What was it?"

Elionys moves to the chair that's pulled out for her, one hand briefly coming to rest on Riderch's arm before she drops into the seat. "Please don't trou-… ah, well, maybe some wine," she replies, head angling back just enough to look up at him with a wan smile. She draws in a dreep breath as her gaze lowers, falling on the maps laid out on the table again. "I likely would not, no." Though the space was only just cleared for her, she reaches out to carefully pull one of the maps closer.

"I dream of flying on dragons often. I don't know if I've ever told you that before. I always have, for as long as I can remember, anyway." The tip of one finger traces the edge of the map as she speaks, brows furrowing. "This one was that, but different. I don't know that I can articulate the difference, just that everything about it was… I could see if more clearly. I can still see it more clearly, rather than in little bits and pieces."

"Please. It's 'hospitality' for someone like Elys Bracken." Riderch manages to say the name without injecting it with a saturation of vitriol, although his sly-seeming grin does twist downwards when uttering it. "I think I can do a little more for you." And he's off to obtain the wine decanter, thinking on this as he pads across the room. Upon the table, Elionys could note that in addition to maps, which are centered on familiar western coastline extending from Seagard to the south of the Reach, and map reconstructions, there is a terrible reminder of something. It's a replication of that sigil that was drawn on the ill-fated Everfull Cup as it was found adrift.

"I don't believe you ever have. It's — that is something I would have remembered." He notes, a little hesitantly. His blue-green eyes widen in accordance though as he returns with the wine. And two cups, setting them down on the table he spreads them out and pours one for her, and one for him, although his looks to be a bit less full. "There are a lot of old stories. My family sometimes —" He stops, hesitantly, looking up towards the staircase and then returning his own gaze to her. "Flying on dragons. That's a little — I'd ask you what that's like, but what is troubling you?"

The sigil. That sigil. Elionys reaches for whatever it's drawn on to pull it closer, and it's there that her gaze rests as Riderch returns with the cups, brows lowered slightly and mouth set in a grim purse. "Your family sometimes…?" The words are repeated as question, but it's asked, marked as something she'll get back to eventually, there are more troubling issues at hand and so she goes on without waiting for him to answer. "It was night, and I was on the back of a black dragon, though I'm not sure where we were."

She pauses to glance up at him. "I saw a huge fire, more than just a house, or a field, it was a whole village. It was far off one moment, and then we were right there in the next, just above, close enough that I could smell the smoke and hear the screams." With that, she gives a little shudder, or maybe it's what comes next that draws the reaction before the words are even spoken. "We fell. I fell? We were both were, but only I hit the ground, except it was sand, and I could hear a song. It was awful, I don't… have you ever felt a sound? Something loud, the way it feels? I could feel the song, I could feel it in me, I… I don't think it's anything I've heard before, because I can't remember what it was, not exactly. Only how it made me feel."

She screws up her face a bit at that, as though it's uncomfortable to even think on it too hard. "There were men there, bearded and carrying shields that were red, and dripped with blood. One of them grabbed me and made me turn away from the village, made me look out at the water, except it wasn't water. It wasn't the sea, or… or it was, but it was like fire turned into liquid, rolling in like waves on the shore. I could feel the heat coming off of it, and there was a man in it, drowning, then he went under. When he came back up, he looked… wrong. I don't know how to explain it, except to say he looked wrong, and I didn't want to look at him, except they made me. The sea of fire kept creeping in, and it was when my skirts caught fire that I woke up."

"I used to be told it was a thing of the Old Blood. The First Men. Something in our ways that we've kept long before your family came across the sea. Or the —" Riderch decides to let things be a little light at first and sort of elaborate on Elionys' half-asked question. "That's something I will tell you about again, sometime. Blood of the Ocean and Blood of the River. Sometimes I feel a little more of one than the other." His voice, while nominally cheery just goes a bit distant here.

That said, he spends a long while reflecting. He actually pulls out a chair next to her and sits. His levity is gone, but there's some manner of fascination in his eyes as he listens to the Princess narrate this strange account of familiar and less-familiar things. His eyes go to that damn sigil again. And the map. And his wine, but it's the most meagre of sips that he takes as he studies her again.

"This is something — else." He begins, hesitantly. While he realizes that as scary as it was, it was still a dream, her mood looks a little infectious.

"May I ask you something else? You say you dream — and I have heard things about your blood. But I've never heard anyone tell me with a grain of truth. What are these dreams? Not this one, I —" Yeah, he'll get back to that in a second. Blink. "Fire, Blood. Water. Drowning?"

Elionys taps a lone digit against the paper upon which the sigil is drawn, exhaling as she turns her gaze over to him. "This was there too. Drawn in the sand, carved into the wood, painted in blood." The question of her dreams, she seems just about to answer, but then the next question follows, and with it, her brows inch upward. "Yes," she answers, looking uncertain as she reaches for the cup of wine he poured for her. "All of those."

Well, maybe now is a good time. "You've read of some the old stories — men who could see through the eyes of beasts. The old Weirwoods — like, you know," For a second, Riderch's smile tries to form as he mouths the words, "were somehow tied to it, and tied to the Old People before us all, or so they say. And the First Men, some of us were able to see and touch things beyond hand and sight." There's a lingering bit of caution there as he recounts this, as if wrestling over it. An impossibility, for sure, but one he can't quite bring himself to an immediate denouncement of.

"So you see things. And you saw all of that. And — this." His hand too goes to the sigil, right next to hers as he rests his fingertip upon the scrawling. "If you think this means something, I think you might need to speak with the people of the Citadel that Lord Hightower is treating with on this." He clicks his tongue. "Maesters have a tendency to — discount a lot of the old beliefs. I wonder if they would do so if you went before them with this." His voice just remains halting. "I am sorr —" And right there he just stops. "You know what? I'm not sure how sorry I am."

"I have," confirms Elionys quietly, and then she falls quiet to listen, curious, and quietly admiring gaze coming to rest on him again. "I sometimes see things, it's only happened on a few occasions, and rarely have I truly understood what any of it meant enough to say anything about it. This though? This I understood well enough. I don't know if it does any good, I don't know that it helps any. The men we knew of, the shields we knew of, the sigil. I didn't see anything to know whether or not a village is going to be burned, and I didn't recognize the drowning man." When his hand comes to rest on the paper, hers shifts ever so slightly, just enough to that her fingers bump against his. "I will speak to whomever you believe I should speak to, if you think it will do any good." She pauses only a beat. "I'm not sorry."

It's one of those times that just seems to stop. Riderch's eyes fall upon Elionys as they curiously search her face. He does something very unusual here. At least for him. There is a whole lot more listening going on, than talking, on his part and he leans forth intently in his seat. The wine's forgotten for a spell, too, nodding along regarding the shields. And the sigil. "And so you bring a warning of —" He finally murmurs, but there was a noticably long stretch of silence there. And just like that, she might notice a slight flush of color in his cheeks but he doesn't make an overt show of anything here. His hand just remains there, right where it is against hers as he addresses what seems like more than one matter. "You can see — we are just guessing now. Pointing at the sea. Jumping to conclusions as if the disappearance of some ships and what we discovered were even related. And now you come with a story like this?" He draws in a subtle breath that is also a half-laugh. "They say we're half-mad when we talk of these things. I just — usually do not. Or think about them. Much." Well, that was certainly unconvincing. His free arm rises upwards as the corresponding shoulder shrugs, a black leather patch climbing up towards his neck.

And the other matter. "I'm — I don't even know what I was saying I was sorry about." He confesses, his eyes blinking in a rapid manner. "Maybe I should not." And his expression turns, momentarily, half-grin, and half-rueful.

"I usually do not either," Elionys admits, at first with a slight smile, but then quiet laughter bubbles up unbidden. "People think my family is mad already, and I've seen the looks Daevon gets when he claims he has dreams of things, or when others have claimed the same. It's the same sort of looks the people who are crazy get." The hand against his remains still as well, and the half-grin he gives is answered with a full grin in return. "Should I scold you for trying to apologize?"

That look sort of breaks his reserve a little and the grin becomes a little less rueful, his chest shakes and out with it a peal of laughter. "Ainsley sometimes unnerves people, more than me. You might have seen why." Ahem. "Your cousin has an — air about him. It probably encourages gossip." Oh, ALL RIGHT, PRINCESS. He isn't moving his hand yet either. "There's something about all of your kin, though." He finally confesses as the laughs do subside.

"The stories surrounding your name do not help in this, as is the history. But it's the most peculiar thing, as one man with a reputation for being somewhat mad can attest to — I never looked at you and saw a hint of that air. And so far you've only done one mad thing that I can count." He pauses a beat, even as his eyes drift to the maps one finaly time. And don't stay there. At all. "Maybe you can just leave that as a stern warning."

"He does, it's true," Elionys agrees with a slight bob of her head, head canting a touch. "What do you mean, something about all of my kin? That they seem mad, or otherwise unusual?" She doesn't sound offended, but instead curious, trying to understand an outside perspective of what she's been on the other side of for her whole life. "I'm glad I don't reek of madness, though what is that one mad thing I've done?" Her gaze follows his, to the maps and then away again, pausing for a drink from the cup clutched in her other hand. "I'm sure I can add to the list of mad things, if you would like."

"It's — I've told you this before, I know I have." Riderch blinks a minute as his eyes drift across the table and slowly back towards her. "To explain, you know, we grow up with stories. Stories of Aegon and his great Dragon coming and treating us as vassals, and destroying the single most dangerous force of arms we had previously known. Like it was nothing. That gives one the air of the untouchable." He recants, that old, old familiar story that he lingers upon so much. "It's not just the fact that we're told, 'oh, this is the family that sits upon the Iron Throne." He says this in a particularly silly voice now. "You can see it. There's a hint of that distance, that danger. It's a little like my sister's great falcon — she's tamed that bird ever since he hatched, but when you look at it, sometimes I think it's only staying in her hands because she amuses him. Whatever his innate nobility."

Pausing a little, his other hand goes to his cup and he hides his face in it momentarily before setting the thing back down on a corner of a map. There it is, sitting right over Oldtown. LOOK OUT OLDTOWN. "I do see a bit of that in you. But it's tempered — by something else. You've something of the presence, but not the distance." He tosses this all out a little hastily and matter-of-factly, and somehwere it's clear that Riderch's not filtering his words.

"And — well. You've done one mad thing. Willingly spent a portion of your time with a madman." To this, he throws back his head and barks out a sharp stream of laughter that is almost a howl." All right, it's likely played up a little for effect.

Though she's heard all of it before, Elionys is quiet as Riderch briefly covers the history her family, and his, nodding a touch when it concludes. When he takes a drink, she does as well, though where his is plunked down upon Oldtown, she keeps hers in hand. Her head cants to the side slightly at the mention of the falcon, but whatever questions it might inspire, she leaves them unspoken for the time being. "Do I? I… I suppose that's good. Visenya told me I was too nice, that I needed to stop being too nice to everyone." His howl of laughter inspires a quieter laughter of her own, head shaking adamantly. "You aren't a mad man, or if you are, you're not a mad man in a way that's bad. I don't think choosing to spend time with you is mad at all."

With that same animated smile, there is just one lengthy pause and then the tale of the falcon is elaborated on with one very telling statement. "I think it takes a certain amount of courage to deal with a clever creature such as that and remain its friend." There's a quick turn of his head towards the stairs, but this is not elaborated on at all. Now there's a certain shade in his features at the mention of Visenya, but if one thing has become clear to Riderch at this point, it's to tread very lightly around Elionys' family. Where specific matters are concerned. "Well, she seems to have certain ideas about…things." He does mention. It's a very vague statement and a very vague intent placed behind it.

"It goes back to what my parents both told me about being a good Lord. And I suppose it extends to being a Lady. Or a Princess. Or Prince, too, one would suppose. Grace is sometimes a better weapon than that." He edges his chin to a sword he has hanging on the wall, neatly sheathed. "I'm still learning about this but I think that may have been a good lesson you've taught me so far. 'Too nice?'" He scoffs, and for a second his chest puffs up a little indignantly as he thinks about it.

"I don't know if I am mad. I am just — I don't know who I am sometimes." He says. So very vague.

"She does," Elionys agrees, that vague answer inspiring another quiet little laugh. "She truly does. I tried to explain to her that I don't want to be unkind, that it does no good and helps nothing. I think she believes she wants friends, but what I think she actually wants is power, and subjects to follow her." The words aren't mallicious, not truly, if anything she appears concerned. "I think people mistake grace for weakness, or a defect of character, or think that I'm only nice because I'm too soft to be capable of anything else." With that, she shakes her head slightly. "I've seen mad people, what they do, what they sound like. Maybe you're not like everyone else, but you're far from that."

Well, that's that, then. Visenya's a known quantity here, by all. And to this, Riderch calmly chews on his lower lip as he nurses a grin. "She seemed to have gotten a great laugh out of something I might have said. If it amuses her." There's a dismissive snort indicating that he's not really stung by whatever this was. "That is — something, though. Grace — Grace is part of power, I think. Or a weapon in its arsenal, which is why I —" blink. "Which is why my father always relies on mother to rein in unruly guests when his patience wears thin." There's a certain weight and weariness to his words indicating that this is a common thing.

And somewhere along the line, it may have occurred to Blackwood that discussing 'madness' with a Targaryen might have been a loaded issue in the first place. "Oh." He says simply. "Well, it's more what I just said. Blood of the Ocean and Blood of the River. I've some of both and they don't always mix in a way that makes sense. I'm not the one who's clearly decided who he is, at least." More vagueness abounds and he gives Elionys a questioning look.

"Did she?" asks Elionys, brows furrowing now. Somehow the thought of him being laughed at annoys her more than any of the teasing she may have gotten. "What did she say? She mentioned that she'd run into you in the street, and that you made some comments about Lord Loryn, but she didn't tell me what she said." One corner of her mouth hitches higher, giving her a brief, crooked smile. "Is it so good to be entirely settled on who you are? Interesting people aren't ever quite settled, and besides, we all change, don't we? Time and circumstance is always changing us."

Gossippy goodness abounds here as Riderch leans his one arm on the table still, and he leans forward with a look that's somewhere between dismissive amusement and rankled annoyance. But first things first. "Ooooooh. Lord Loryn." He begins, clearing his throat. "I suspect he'll be treating you decently. Now." If there was an explanation there, he's not telling. "I saw Lord Loryn being Lord Loryn, going off with who I believe was one of the younger Mormont girls. The singer. I thought for a second we should be more concerned, but — that girl's probably drawn more blood at her young age than Squire Loryn will in his entire life." Squire?

His teeth flash a bit as he states this and his other hand reaches for a wine-cup again but it's more of a prop than anything else. He matches Elionys' smile here. "But your cousin? She —" and Riderch just conversationally tosses this out now as he possibly can. "Oh. She was making some sort of comments about how we seem to spend a 'lot of time together.'" This comes as diplomatically as he can manage, but there's a certain hint of awkwardness there. "And of course, there a little bit of talk about history. My family's history. That sort of thing. It was entirely forgettable." Sure, Riderch. Sure.

But it's the philosophical topic that holds him now. "The other thing you just said. I don't — I don't know if I can answer that. You've witnessed a lot of things about me. I don't think you would have recognized the man I was a year ago. You've seen someone I almost swore a blood oath against." Almost. He pauses a beat. "And you've seen some of the dearest of my blood. All of these things change me. I'm — I am not actually sure what it is that I am trying to tell you here. I am not always comfortable in this place." He's rambling a little.

There is a somewhat doubtful air to the way Elionys looks at him, the way her brows prick upward as he tries to casually impart the encounter. "I'm sure that she did mention that." There is a moment of annoyance that is aimed an entirely different direction than Riderch, but it's quick to pass, words washed down by a swallow of wine. "Lord Loryn has avoided me completely since the day he tried to get me to work at the theater. He wrote me a letter apologizing, and… well, a few other things, but it seems as though he is done attempting to court me." She takes another swallow of wine, and then the near empty cup is placed on the table. "You wouldn't have recognized the woman I was a year ago, Riderch," she tells him quietly. "My life here is so different from the life I had in King's Landing, ust as I'm certain your life here is different from how it was in Raventree Hall, that changes us, but that doesn't matter. I'm just glad to know you now."

"Hmmmm." It is with that brief sound that Riderch dismisses the topic of Elionys' cousin entirely, and for his part, it seems to be a welcome dismissal. Even Loryn here only gets a brief quirk of one of his sandy-hued eyebrows. "Well — I suppose he wasn't that serious but at least — that is good, I suppose." His eyes drift to his own wine cup as it is emptied but he does not make any move to refill it. "I suppose it is for the best." There's something in his response that is entirely too, well, knowing here and at this point she might be able to pick up on it.

But the other topic? This has his full attention as he listens to the Princess' own story. "There's a lesson in Raventree Hall that you can learn as you walk amongst the cairns, and up through the Black Hill, and walk upon all those old bones and buried swords. Places change a man. Or a woman. The same way people change us all." It's an oddly somber and reflective tone for him but he manages to punctuate it with the old grin again, looking squarely at her. "Whatever we were — I am glad of what you have become. And me, too, I suppose. For what it is worth." He looks over at the sword on the wall again, there's a bit of emphasis and weight in that. And then there's a very awkward silence as he thinks on what to say next. If there were crickets, they'd be chirping now.

Elionys seems entirely willing to leave behind the topic of both her cousin, and the young Tyrell Lord, though at the last, she does give him a look. Curious, eyes narrowing a touch, as though trying to read what isn't being said. Whether the attempt is successful or not, she seems content to move on to the other subject. "I would like to see Raventree Hall," she tells him, not for the first time. "One day, I truly would. I don't know what it is I expect to see there, but I imagine it's very different from what I have seen before, and that alone holds a certain appeal."

"Maybe you can come along with us and see it. The offer stands." And that is, frankly, all Riderch can really muster there as he gives her a rather inquisitive look. It's as though he's asking something, eyes gently widened. And then he breaks the silence with a flippant, "That is, if you still want to travel with a man who is half-mad." And his grin is wide as can be. That hand that was sitting there on that ghastly sigil for so long for a moment is held aloft. After very shyly brushing hers. "Thank you for bringing this to me. And for trusting me with it. This is —" Well, it is something he's not actually voicing here. "I really should be getting prepared for our ride soon." All right, Blackwood. Back to business! "Shall we meet at the gates?"

"If we can ever find the time to do so, I would like that, very much," Elionys replies quietly, eyes going down to the paper with the sigil and the hands resting atop it. A little grin answers the flippant statement, head tilting to the side go give him a sidelong look. "How can I say no to a man willing to travel with a dragon, mm? With such a reputation as we have, a man would have to be half-mad to want to." The bright grin softens into a gentler smile, cheeks taking on just a hint of color as his hand brushes against hers. "Of course I came to you," she tells him, as though the choice were an obvious one, and for her, it seems it was. A slow breath is drawn, and then she gives a quick nod. "Yes, I should go finish getting ready," which really means finish overseeing other people packing her things. "Yes, I'll be there." With that her hand lifts from that terrible sigil and she rises. "See you soon, Riderch."

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