(121-07-17) Phrasing
Summary: In which a great deal of talk about Musical Instruments sounds very, very dirty.
Date: Date of play (17/07/121)
Related: Related Logs None.

A diminutive Dornishman steps out into the twilight to practice blowing his lizard. Luckily, it's a long black cured wind instrument and not his name for a body part or worse yet a real lizard. Which would be gross.

Carolis lingers on the terrace for awhile. It's a lovely day, he's got a patch of shade, and his dark moods are set aside. For now. The lemon cake's plate and cheese dishes have been cleared away, the ale flagon replaced by a fine Arbor red. Carolis has his feet propped upon on the chair opposite his, under the table, and he's humming quietly to himself. Unconsciously, his humming shifts to harmonize with the tune he hears on the periphery of his consciousness. Finally he realizes it's real music, not just in his head, and he turns to see out its source. He smiles at the man blowing his lizard.

Madrighal lowers his long lashed eyelids and moves closer, taking the smile for encouragement. The song itself has First men roots and is just recognizable in an old love song they sing in the North, though this Dornish version is far remoived with so many generations of singers in North and south who never met, that it is now only hauntingly similar, a song almost known, but periodically taking unexpected turns into the unknown. Delicate fingers slide up and down the shaft of the instrument as he covers holes to change notes. His fingers are quick and skilled and this strange variation on an old theme is played with a surprisingly plaintive soulfulness.

Carolis tilts his head as he watches the minstrel, his gaze flitting over the fingering he does of his instrument. He's got the quick eye of a man who knows the ins and outs of a woodwind. It's more than a layman's curiosity. Sadly, he has no access to his own instrument, but he makes do with a solid thump of his hand on the table, and the glass is set aside so that he can thump with the other hand, too. He's got a good sense of rhythm. The beat is the kind favored in the North, music for timing work, for military might, strong and sturdy, but he works in a little trill and roll to soften the cadence.

Madrighal raises his eyebrows and gives Carolis a speculative look. When the tune draws towards it's natural close, he invents a bridge to carry it into an old lullaby of the same ancient pedigree with words that make it sound like a love song if you don't listen carefully. This being simpler, hasn't changed nearly as must with the passing time. The melody for the verses is somewhat changed, but the chorus has lasteed the ages. He plays on, watching the Northerner to see what he will do.

Carolis shifts his beat to complement the song. Lighter, softer, but bright and quick like the footfall of fairies over the roof. Then his voice just flows into the song. He's got the voice of an angel, not that his faith would even know them. There is strength in it, and the tone is crystal clear, with just enough roughness in his throat to lend depth and nuance. He smiles as he watches the minstrel, and he sings.

As the Northerner takes up the melody, Madrighal begins to weave a counterpoint around the lovely voice now carrying the heart of the song. He is extremely skills and inventive. He looks impressed by Lord Carolis' voice, a true musician spotting another such.

Carolis weaves in turn, and his voice swells, growing stronger. The succession of notes harder, driving the rhythm along with his hands, beating wood. Finally the song crests upon a crescendo. He looks positively joyful as he expresses those last few notes.

Madrighal blows the last long note challengingly, holding to see which of them might go longer, expression challenging and cheeks puffed out around his instrument.

Alas, the challenge ends as all beautiful music does; the two men finish together, red-faced and, at least in the case of the Northron, laughing in his pleasure as he tries to catch his breath. Still, they both managed to go for quite awhile.

Madrighal is breathing heavy from his efforts. He slides the tip from between his lips, smiling his delight. His laugh like toffee, thick and warm. He claps the stranger's shoulder. His voice is high and expressive, and as Dornish as his clothes. "You and I make beautiful music together, I think!"

Madrighal is breathing heavy from his efforts. He slides the tip from between his lips, smiling his delight. His laugh like toffee, thick and warm. He claps the stranger's shoulder. His voice is high and expressive, and as Dornish as his clothes. "You and I make beautiful music together, I think!"

Carolis's laughter is a soft, rolling sound, felt more in the trembling of his shoulders than heard. All that power in his voice, and when he speaks, his tone is soft and pleasant. "That we do, my friend. Come sit." He clasps the man's hand as it rests on his shoulder. "I am Lord Carolis Stark. Well met."

Madrighal's warmth is as natural as sun on a beach. "Madrighal Sand. Well met indeed, Lord Carolis. It is seldom one hears a voice as good as yours, even amoung proffessionals. Do you play as well as sing?"

Carolis inclines his head to Madrighal, and he pours him some of the Arbor red from one of the empty glasses at his table. "Madrighal, what a serendipitous name. I suppose Carolis is, if you think about it." He gestures for the man to sit. "I play a bit. I've got a violin at home, and a flute. A few flutes, really. A five, a harp, but it's only a small one. Mostly I sing."

Madrighal chuckles that warm rich chuckle again as he sits, "Not as coincidental as it looks. My mother was also a musician. My name was meant as hope and blessing. You do indeed seem well named yourself, given the quality of your voice." He accepts the wine and takes a sip, closing his eyes, the better to gage it's quality. "I've a small rebec upstairs and a harp, or if you are in the mood you might blow my lizard here, if you were interested in playing together."

Madrighal is quite short, a slender 5'2" at most. He has caramel coloured skin and a fall of tight black curls. Long dark eyelashes curtain large dark eyes. His oval face has prominent cheekbones, generous lips, and a delicate nose. he has a large beauty mark near the corner of his mouth.

Madrighal is dressed in a silk emerald green dhoti with loose cut cotton teal trousers. Soft leather celadon dyed boots only reach his ankle. He has a long celadon scarf that can be draped over his shoulders or draped over his head if it is hot.

If Tellur is looking for Carolis, he only needs follow the voice. That sweet familiar sound comes from the terrace, along with the accompaniment of a woodwind (a blown lizard to be exact). Though by the time Tellur gets there, Lord Carolis is done with the song, has poured the diminutive Dornish minstrel a glass of Arbor red, and is making friends. Of course.

We have that in common," he tells Dornishman. "My own mother had a voice sweet as honey, and she taught me to sing." He eyes Madrighal's instrument, and he says, "It's tempting, though I don't want to end up with a sore jaw. I haven't blown a lizard in ages."

And speaking of sore jaw, in comes Tellur, looking rather pallid and worse for wear. Fact is, a childhood addiction to sweets has meant a heavy-handed trip to see a healer this afternoon - and a wisdom tooth removed at the back. He is not a contented-looking man "Lord Carolis," he says, in a bit of a mumble around the poppy-juice soaked pad in his mouth "…wait. Blown a…"

Madrighal takes out a very fine cerulean silk handkerchief and wipes the tip of his instrument which he waggles enticingly at Lord Carol, a seductive grin on his soft lips, "One can't hurt, surely? Or I might fetch you another to play with?" Then he spots the approaching man, "Are you friends? Do you like to blow a lizard too, or are your talents in another area?"

Carolis, before this escalates to Tellur Smash levels, lays a hand upon Madrighal's lizard to still its waggling, and he says with a laugh, "This is his lizard, Tellur." A harmless woodwind instrument, see? His gaze shifts to Madrighal, pale eyes alight with mirth. "Perhaps another time. I'm afraid my friend has had to get a tooth pulled today." He takes a flask at his hip and pours it into an empty glass. Then he offers it to Tellur. The strong stuff. He knows how to fix things. With alcohol so strong it could be used for stripping paint. "Tellur Snow, this is Madrighal Sand. A man who really knows how to handle his lizard." All right, that time it was on purpose.

Tellur is regarding hte instrument very dubiously, and then he says to Madrighal "I shoot people in the head from a very long way away, in the dark." Ahhh, yes. Tellur. Listing his talents. Now, though, he adds "I am Tellur Snow, yes - Sand? Ah." A quick nod at that, and the glass is taken with a muttered "Many thanks, my Lord." Tellur just tips it back, and clears his throat "Owwww, Gods that burns!"

Madrighal sets his instrument on the table and stands to give a bow to the afflicted Snow. His voice is high, but very rich and expressive. His accent is very Dornish. "A pleasure to meet you." His smile falters, "Yes, that is a talent. Sand, yes. My father is a Torland of Ghost Hill. Lord carolis and I were making music together before you arrived."

"Imagine my delight," Carolis says as he flashes Madrighal a smile. He then tells Tellur "It's good for you. Enough of that with the poppy juice and you'll sleep right through the healing." For what it's worth, Carolis dragged himself home the other day at the wee hours, fell into bed, and was in there with Malcolm an awfully long time. He'd gone to see a Dornish lady. But here he is, out and about, looking positively chipper. "I wouldn't mind doing it again," he tells the minstrel. "I think we would play together marvelously."

"If you have him playing and singing, I owe you," Tellur says, in his somewhat clipped and gruff way to Madrighal. He nods "My father is Angell Stark. But he's not a close relation to milord here." He inclines his head to Carolis, and rubs at his temples, and then he says "I should like to hear…more music?"

Madrighal smiles back at Lord Carolis, all charm and long eyelashes. "I would gladly play with you for hours, My Lord." The Dornishman wears a spicy, masculine scent, and has clinging to him the scent of resin and old wood. He is very clean and well groomed. He studies Tellur now, turning that warm smile on him. "Might you like a song from home, perhaps? The versions I know are often not the same as they play here, but sometimes they are close as Lord Blackwood assures me."

Carolis's expression goes all melty at poor Tellur when he asks for music. "Of course," he says. "You sit there, and relax, and let us play for you." He looks to Madrighal. "Are you going to blow your lizard or shall we sing?"

Tellur says to Madrighal "I would appreciate a song from…" His eyes widen a little at the man's scent. Carolis can see his nostrils flare faintly, and his eyes widen "Mhm," says the skin changer, who then shakes himself like a dog, and he says "I can't play at all. I have no musical feeling in my bones. Are…you really going to sing, Carolis?" And he looks _delighted_.

Madrighal takes up his lizard and after some thought wraps his lips around it. He begins to play. It is not quite as astonishing as his earlier performance, but it is still lovely. Skilled hands fly up and down the shaft, fingering the holes with assurance. He has again chosen a song with first Men origins, ancient and beautiful, but somewhat changed in his version from the one that lingers in the North. It is a song about a hunt for a sacred stag. The chorus is very close to the Northern version, the notes of the third verse stanza have mutated rather a bit, but the timing is the same. he plays through verse and chorus in the hopes the Northerners might know it.

Carolis croons at Tellur, by way of reply, "As I came back along the river at the hours of half past eight, who should I see but the Dornish lady brushing her hair outside the gate. First she brushed it then she tossed it, in her hand was a silver comb. In all my life, I ne'er did see a maid so fair since I did roam…" But then Madrighal is blowing his lizard again and he his attention shifts to the song he plays without breaking stride. Ooh, this song he knows. He's /sung/ this song back home! Well, the proper version anyway. Sound the horn loudly, call the hounds… He sings of riding through the snows, which is a bit different, but it flows well, and he sings it to Tellur, who has surely heard it before. Long ago.

Tellur, who is definitely feeling under the weather, brightens noticably at this choice of music - clearly it appeals to the wolfish man. He watches the way Madrighal's hands move, impressed, but more…soothed. Certainly, he could use some distraction, and this works excellently. The man leans back, allowing Carolis' hard alcohol to take him somewhere…more pleasant. The words that Carolis croons make him blush, for some reason, before the song proper starts, and he settles in and leans back. His eyes darken with old memories. PLeasant ones.

In the Dornish version it's the green hills of the Reacher March, but it is fundamentally the same song. After the first verse in unison, Madrighal begins to break away, throwing in little florishes meant to mimic horn and hound, Somehow they always blend beautifully with Carolis's voice and the melody and he does his best to enhance rather than compete with Carolis voice, turning notes into a setting best to set off the jewel that is the Northerner's voice.

Carolis does so much better than singing alone or singing with someone competing for the stage, such as it is. His voice blends with the woodwind's tone, breaking away, coming back together. It's a rousing tune, and Carolis gets into the spirit of things by gesturing with his fine red wine that should really be a tankard of ale. He sings to Tellur, mostly. When the song comes to a close, he is laughing again. He sets the wine glass down so that he can applaud the minstrel.

Down by the river a raven croaks twice. A pause, thrice. Carol doesn't seem to notice as such, but he does happen to pick that time to say, "As much as I hate to say it, I must attend to business at home. But we must play again soon."

And the other Northerner is reserved now, quiet. He smiles, quietly, as Carolis laughs, but then he shakes his head a little, and he says "That was…_nicely_ distracting." Don't mind him. He meant nothing by the way he looks - homesick, briefly, and contented both.

Madrighal gives them bright looks and another bow, "It was a true pleasure to meet you both. A skilled singer and a good audience are always welcome. I should like to hear you on flute or rebec, My Lord, aand tellur Snow, I hope you are feeling better."

Carolis rises to his feet, and he offers the bottle of Arbor red to Madrighal. "Please, if you would, Madrighal Sand. It will only go to waste otherwise." He then offers Tellur a hand, as if the man would need help getting up over a /tooth/. But hey, he's all poppy-juiced up! "We will come again soon, my friend. I would like you to show me your fingering on your lizard."

"Much better," says Tellur, a little frazzled. Mmm. Poppy and alcohol, and now he is very tired. After all, the tooth thing bloody well hurts. He grins at Carolis, and then he says to him "That sounds _so_ filthy." Waveringly, Tellur slings an arm around Cat's shoulders, to be dragged off, saying as he goes "That was so pretty."

Madrighal bows again and takes the bottle with the care it deserves. "I would be happy to give this proper attention." He grins wickedly, "Perhaps next time I shale whip out my serpent, that we might enjoy together." He is clearly perfectly aware of how filthy it sounds.

Carolis grins broadly at Madrighal, and he does give the diminutive man some careful consideration from the corner of his eye. Carolis towers over him, it turns out when he stands up. He's a tall boy. One arm slung around Tellur's shoulders, he tells the skinchanger, "Hmm? Oh, Tellur, get your mind out of the gutter." He grins though, and he says, "Thank you. It feels good to sing again."

"Sorry, Cat," Tellur says, tongue free enough with the alcohol to call the man by his nickname. But then? Gone.

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