(123-01-11) Spreading the Music
Spreading the Music
Summary: Madrighal conspires with Desmond to spread a particular song.
Date: Date of play (11/01/123)
Related: http://gobmush.wikidot.com/log:123-01-04-a-musical-conspiracy

Madrighal is finishing up a set with his lute, with a rousing drinking song. For all his Dornish accent, he seems well liked here, having been house musician for a long time, but being a rare but beloved sight since the Plague. He's been playing old favorites, but somehow didn't seem to hear all the men calling for the "Bear and the Maiden Fair." This last song was a favorite with sailors throughout the seven Kingdoms, though the verses vary widely depending on the singer. It is the very, very wicked, "Curious Mermaid." This version left out the verse about the squid and the tentacles and includes a rather bumbling lobster and a cranky crab. The whole pub sings the final refrain at the top of their lungs and there is some grumbly as the diminutive Dornishman bows out after on account of thirst.

Siyu is relaxing, it's later on a Monday night, it's dark, the inn is full enough of people, Siyu is set up in his corner. The Yi Ti Pretty boy is dressed in his riding leathers. A small bit of gold has been worked into the gorget of the leather, showing a little bit of wealth, but it's unflatteringly bulky. His hair is pulled back and a full pitcher of beer is in front of him. A gold chased pipe is next to hm, something…interesting is curling from it. A mix of tabac…and something more? It's a sickly sweet smell, and Siyu's eyes are lidded. A half dozen of his caravan guards hang nearby, eating, drinking, for the most part alert. He gave them very specific instructions since he's planning on medicating himself.

Desmond Snow is drinking. He's sitting at a corner table, knees up against it, chair tilted back, singing gustily along with Madrighal. He seems to know every verse to the "Curious Mermaid," smashing out the chorus with a fist thumping down against the table. The huge Northman is in fine spirits, emptying a tankard of ale at a long pull.

Madrighal disappears in the crowd and emerges at the bar where they already have his wine poured. He murmurs something to the barkeep and the barkeep points towards the gigantic Northerner. The rather frail musician weaves through the crowd like a fish swimming up stream. Madrghal, bobs his head politely, "I am Madrighal Sand, Might you be Desmond Snow?"

Siyu lifts his head up, just a moment to sip his beers and he notices Desmond, giving him a nod…spotting Madrighal too. It's been a while since he saw the man and he purses his lips and considers.

Desmond drops his knees to the ground, sitting upright with a thud. He nods his head once. "I've heard of you," he says amiably. "Ser Daevon says you're a good enough lad. And I've seen you ride. In that competition. You did well. Have a seat." He spots Siyu in the crowd and raises an affable hand in greeting, then looks back to the tiny musician. "This business, brings you by my table?"

Madrighal gives a friendly enough wave to the lad from Yi Ti, and sits, carefully setting his lute case where it won't be trampled, "I've a bit of work needing discretion and a man fits in in the undercity. It's not something a Dornishman can do." Indeed, his accent is very, very Dornish, for all the summer Isles in his complexion and hair style, though hard to place regionally, as if he sounds a little like everywhere. "I am told you are a friend of Bryn Flowers and might not be adverse to helping him nor adverse to a bit of coin."

Siyu just remains in his corner then, drnking, occasionally taking a very small puff of smoke, not bothering anyone.

Desmond blinks away the haze of drink that he's allowed to blear his future; he's suddenly sober, leaning forward with his elbows atop the table. He's frowning now, not looking entirely pleased at what he hears. "I'm a knight," the man says very softly. "I am not a sellsword any more. But I am a friend of Bryn Flowers'. And I'd do much to help the boy. So stop speaking of coin, and tell me what you want before I pick you up and toss you through that window." He eyes Madrighal idly. "One-handed, I think." The man doesn't seem truly angry. It's almost like a bit of banter. He glances around again, toward Siyu, toward the guards, toward other men in the room.

It is unlikely the man weighs even a hundred pounds and looks as if a cough could kill him. He lifts his chin and looks irritated by the threats rather than frightened, "You are not the first man to threaten to kill me in this place. My apologies if I have offended you. Clearly my news was out of date. I do not get out as much as I used to, especially with the riot." He moves closer to whisper somthing. Odds are the size difference alone makes them look comical.

Siyu motions to his guards, he has a half dozen or so hanging around and he simply tells them to stay out of it. He doesn't want a part of that, and simply remains sitting.

Madrighal whispers, "I am trying to find the men who drank at the tavern of Bryn's mother before her death. I need someone to ask around the neighborhood for those who remember her fondly and would like a bit of coin to help her son ensure she is remembered." to Desmond.

Desmond looks down at his thick hamhock hands for a few moments, any irritation fading. He stares down at them for a long moment, then spreads his hands and sighs. With an air of resignation, the huge Northman leans forward to whisper with Madrighal.

Desmond whispers: How much coin does the boy need?

Madrighal whispers, "You misunderstand. I have plenty of coin. It's the men I need." to Desmond.

"I can ask around. But it's been years. And didn't the Inn stand in King's Landing?" Desmond looks pensive for a moment. "I've got other friends, though. Men that could be riding that way shortly; got jobs waiting for them over in the Capitol."

Madrighal says, "Best to get the details from Bryn directly. I could use some men here in the Undercity either way, men with good voices and discreet tongues. it is good pay for spending a few evenings in a tavern and it is in a good cause." His large dark eyes are serious. There is a proud tilt to his chin."

"Look, and I'm not lying, mate, you've got the wrong idea." Desmond sighs, rubbing at his face. "Most of my friends are long dead or long gone, and I never had much influence in Oldtown. I campaigned up north, I campaigned down along the Stormlands, I even killed fuckers in the Westerlands, but I never did much campaigning in Oldtown. Only reason I'm here, I came back from Braavos and this is where the ship dropped me." The huge Northman seems rather sad as he gazes at the musician. "I can recommend a man. Nechtan, his name is. He's a sellsword from far, far north. I fought him a few times. He's reliable."

Madrighal sighs, "I can give you the names of the men I used here last time. If you send Nectan to me very quickly, I will hire him, but time is of the essence with this. I would do it myself, but anti-Dornish sentiment is high and I do not wish to be knifed. I am a man of peace." He spreads his arms to show that he wears nothing more threatening than an eating knife. Then he drops his voice again. He whispers, "They need to be trained and sent out enough before the Tourney at Highgarden for the song to catch." to Desmond.

Desmond closes his eyes for a few moments, sighing. "Alright. There's another man I can talk to; he's rather.. shy, but he may have some friends. And I know Nechtan has a clutch of thugs. What you have in mind seems easy enough coin. And nobody'll die, probably." The huge Northman scratches at a scar on his face. "I'll send you a few other lads I know. They're reliable, for the price, but don't expect them to die for you."

Madrighal shakes his head, "It is not likely. This is not a matter of fists and knives, but of amiability in company. All they need do is hit as many drinking places they can in crowded times of the evening, get people singing….
You whisper, "And toss in one particular song into the mix. I will pay well for their ale and the risk." to Desmond.

Desmond nods slowly, scratching still at that scar. "I'll put the word out," he promises. The huge Northerner shrugs a little awkwardly. "I don't figure any of these lads'll object to drinking. They're sellswords. It's what they do." He pauses. "But I want it clear, these aren't knives in the dark I'm hiring to you. I don't know those sorts of people. These're professionals, in their way."

The Counter tenor is very very firm on this point, "I want no violence. The starting of brawls or the knifing of men would draw entirely the wrong kind of attention. The idea is for the men to not stand out in the crowd. For them to be enough like the men they drink near that the other drinkers will have trouble remembering who started singing the Bear or the Mermaid or this song in particular. If they go in pairs, one could start singing and the other could toss in the one I want third song in or so." He searches the giant's face for understanding. "Discretion, not violence. I am not a violent man." He places a thin, but surprisingly strong hand on the Northerner's forearm, "Do we have an understanding? Can I trust you?"
You paged Desmond with 'It's fine.'

"I'm recommending sellswords to you. You asked me for friends who can help. These are the men I know." Desmond sighs, rubbing at his face. "I've absolutely no notion of what they'll do, but I can say this — for the right coin, these men will be placid as lambs. Shit. It's a lot easier than being lions, and we all know that." He leans forward as well. "Don't tell anyone, Madrighal Sand, but men like me do get tired of burying our friends. They'll stay in line."

Madrighal smiles up at him, the dazzling smile almost enough to make him beautiful again, "Your secret is safe with me." The hand on his arm is soft, except for the thick callouses on the finger tips, and long of fingers. "When and where shall we meet? I do appreciate this favour and since you will not take coin you shall have to settle for my friendship, for what that is worth."

Desmond scrutinizes the man for a few moments before, finally, smiling. It's as though it's his natural expression; the man's broad, battered, face just lights up. "Well, give me a day or so. I'll come back here when I've got a few. You'll know them. They look like me, only smaller and they never got knighted." His smile turns a little more tired, almost a sneer. "If they'll come. Some of 'em think I'm a bit jumped-up."

Madrighal nods, "I will be playing here each night until it is settled. Let me give you a list of other men you might send for for me before I go…." He looks about for a scholar who might have ink about his person. He gently squeezes the arm, "If they are true friends they will forgive you, I think."

Desmond snorts again, this time in genuine amusement. "Mate, you haven't heard a word I said. My friends are dead and gone, or retired and running brothels now. These men are sellswords I know. They're not friends." He smiles. "But they'll come for the coin, mate. Easy coin."

Madrighal looks up at him, all gentle sympathy, "I am sorry for the passing of your friends. You must have lived a hard life."

"I have new friends now, and a better life. All that's behind me." Desmond pushes upright with a slow groan. "And much as I appreciate what you're doing, I wish I didn't have to go talk to these lads." He smiles, patting the singer's arm. "I'm gonna go do it now."

Siyu remains in his corner, and casual.

Madrighal tries to turn the arm pat into a forearm clasp. Beneath the loose caftan he is terribly thin, but there is wirey muscle in his arms nevertheless. "Well met and may the seven protect you."

"And you." And Desmond Snow departs, squaring his shoulders and checking his sword as he moves into the street.

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