(123-07-29) Tyrell-Merryweather Wedding: The Welcome Feast
Tyrell-Merryweather Wedding: The Welcome Feast
Summary: The houses of Tyrell and Merryweather welcome Oldtown to a glorious feast at the Garden Isle Manse, in honour of the wedding of Ser Loryn Tyrell and Lady Miranda Merryweather, to take place the next day.
Date: 29-30/07/2016
Related: Related Logs (Say None if there aren't any; don't leave blank. You have to use full URLs, like http://gobmush.wikidot.com/logtitle)

Oldtown is abuzz with activity. The guests from the far Eastern Reach and Beyond have filled the city in preparation for the coming wedding. The tourney-grounds are being adorned with garlands, elaborate flower-crowns and wreaths made for the beautiful Starry Sept, and the Tyrell's gardens of the Water Isle are fairly bursting at the seams with guests.

Gilded lanterns made to resemble roses hang from wall to wall to illuminte the gardens. Musicans play sprightly tunes alongside a broad open floor for dancing but at the moment it is left empty. The feasting tables, welcoming the Tyrells, Merryweathers, and illustrious guests from all of the Reach are laden with elaborate displays and welcoming chairs. Banners of Tyrell's green and golden rose hang alongside the deep blue and golden cornucopia of Merryweather with seven ribons the hue of the rainbow trailing from each.

On the many welcoming tables, bread sits alongside salt boxes molded like various fruit shapes- silver and cleverly hinged. Wines, beers, ciders, and Beesbury meads flow freely to the guests desires. Light nibbles await - fruit, cheese, tiny sausages and fresh pots of mustard, breads and rolls.

At the head table, the Tyrells and Merryweathers sit proudly. The soon to be wed couple sit at the far side of the tables - separated by acres of family. This isn't the wedding feast so they're not sitting together; that can be saved for tomorrow night.

Guests stream in dressed in their casual finest. The high fashion show is no doubt reserved for tomorrow at the proper wedding. Even a few low-born and common folk mingle in- invited by the bride's charity or the groom's performer largess.

A juggler takes the dance floor and starts to entertain with one, two, three, a half dozen colorful balls to the delight of the children of the crowd. And with that, the guests start to be escorted to their seats- the more illustrious the family the closer to the main table.

Malcolm is in his very best doublet, his hair and beard fresh died. Knowing full weel that he is not amoung the illustrious, he has found a comfortable place to lean and people watch as the fancier folk mingle, and is now watching the high born nobles being led to their seats.

Lady Marsei has arrived alone this evening; that is, besides any guests who may have also arrived from the Hightower, she is without the distinctive company of her husband. The welcome feast is her first public outing since her return from Starfall, where the lady must have spent a good deal of time outside, for her cheeks and shoulders — bared by the looping collar of her sleeveless gown of pink silk — are rosy with the touch of sun. Her typically subtle freckles are out in fuller force to match her red hair, and they make a cheerful addition to her beaming smile, which she directs so enthusiastically to both every person and every delight in the Tyrell garden that she's startled when she's directed toward her (more illustrious) spot.

Siyu arrives as is polite for a feast. He has several guards, but they wait and mingle with the grooms outside. He steps in, freshly groomed, freshly made up. He is dressed in leather, hunter green. Slightly fancier then just regular brown. It is of Westrosi style. Slightly thicker then riding leather, but not quite armor. But it includes gloves and a gorget. His face has a very light coating of makeup. A little red in the cheeks, some purple eyeshadow, just very light. his long black hair is tied back with white silk ribbons, and smells faintly of vanilla and jasmine. There is faint gold braid along the gorget. A slight, appropriate display of wealth for the merchant. He waits to be announced, and will offer a gift to the appropriate collector. A small pouch. But a fortune in Saffron from Yi Ti. The Yi Ti Merchant will slowly mingle into the wedding feast.

Aralynne is assigned as she has been to Lady Miranda's retinue and thus hovers behind the to be wed couple. She wallflowers as much as possible - having been crammed into a better than usual servant's dress for the occasion which she seems uncomfortable in. She leans up against the wall and planting one foot on the wall folds her arms and observes the proceedings. She was always a fish out of water at these gatherings. The former thief is blessed with a pretty face and so occasionally is subject to unwanted attention at the gathering - the stares of lowborn knights - and the occasional highborn one. But this is mercifully sparse for her given her ability to position herself even in the crowded room where she is least noticable.

Rycherd arrives in Lady Chessa Lannister's retinue as one of her knights. He arrives downstairs, looking for his mistress but it appears she hasn't made it to the feast quite yet. Rather than wait for her, he makes his way in, keeping to the edges as the lords and ladies greet each other. He does dress in Lannister colors, although, those that know Lady Chess would know that she was born into Tyrell before being married into Lannister House.

Lord and Lady Rowan of Goldengrove come to the feast in the company of their own guests, Ser Adarian and Lady Bryony Tyrell, who have so many kinsmen to greet that the Rowans very shortly find themselves moving through the garden simply as a couple. A fact perhaps worthy all on its own of a ripple of comment, this being their first public appearance together since their reunion a few months past… They have been in mourning: they still are, the lady clad in a modest gown of high-necked black silk which proves on closer acquaintance to be richly embroidered, black-on-black; the lord in similarly sober attire. They are a handsome pair despite everything, well-matched in birth, in age, in dignity… Her hand rests upon his, and she goes only where he may guide her; her eyes wander, however, and she dispenses many a reserved nod before the sight of Lady Marsei Hightower inspires a frank, glad smile.

Miranda is so pleased to see many familiar faces of Oldtown in the sea of unfamiliar Tyrell soon-to-be kin and Merryweather cousins; it seems half the Reach is here tonight. She delights at Marsei's new tan and bows her head in gentle pleased respect to the lord and lady of Goldengrove.

Lord Josapf Merryweather rises and holds a golden goblet high. His words are 'Behold our Bounty' and he personifies it with his broad stomach and jowels covered by downy muttonchops. "Lords, ladies, Oldtown, the Reach! We welcome you once more to celebrate the union of our two houses for the greater good of the Reach and the Realm. Tomorrow Ser Loryn of House Tyrell and my Miranda of Merryweather will be sealed before the Seven in the Starry Sept and family and friendship forever bonded between our houses. So tonight - we welcome you - Rich and Poor. Young and Old. Northern, Western, Valeward, of the Islands, of the Dornish marshes… from King's Landing to Old-Town. Welcome! Let us break bread and share salt in the spirit of hospitality." And he does so, dipping a piece of bread into a salt-box shaped as a rose.

Aralynne watches the speech from her corner of the room with a faint smile. Again the celebration is not something she has ever been used to. Maybe in her former life this would have been the perfect cover for some kind of job she was trying to pull off. Snatch some valuables whilst everyone is engaged. She yawns. No trouble to get into here evidently. She begins to polish an apple on her dress.

Marsei is on the verge of expressing all of her delight to Miranda the moment she's seated, but remains politely quiet as Lord Merryweather speaks. She raises the goblet in front of her with aplomb to his words. As bread is symbollically and literally broken, she spies Lord and Lady Rowan of Goldengrove. Although her smile often seems ever-present and infinitely kind, buoyed now by the festivity, there is an additional level of warmth reserved for those with whom she shares blood, evidenced by her expression to Margot.

Malcolm,despite being a Bastard Knight, and thus lowborn, is neither ogling nor harrassing. He has a polite bow for passing nobles as they are going to be seated. Not being up on court gossip, Ser Malcolm Storm makes note of the Rowen's mourning colours, but has no notion as to the nature of the tragedy, and so he gives another polite bow as they pass on. He does not dair make eye contact with the Lady he made Queen of Love and Beauty for the year, diffdently keeping his eyes lowered as he bows. Once he is in his place, he too dips bread and salt and eats it. He lifts his cup at the Merryweather's toast, and though his joy for his friend the groom is in his face, does not drink deep, not being much of a drinker.

Siyu is not one to associate with many of the nobles. He is a foreigner after all. Worse he's a successful foreigner. What an embarrassment. He will find a cup of wine, rising it at the breaking of bread and the offering of salt. A good host, and all tat. He will note someone trying to not stand out. And that of course stands out to him. he wanders with a very light sway of his hip over to Araylynne "Greetings and salutations." he offers with a faint accented common. His own accent sounds as if it's filtered through all of Essos.

Rycherd quietly listen to Lord Merryweather's speech, his manner polite and solicitous as he offers his appreciation at the man's words. He does take a drink in the cup in his hand and once bread is broken goes to greet one of the other low born bastards mingling at the party. Ser Rycherd Hill gives Ser Malcolm Storm a polite nod as he comes to the second where their kind generally sit and looks to see if the man minds if he joins him.

Antony leads his wife with solemnity and rectitude, those pillars of any truly fun party. He looks serious, a bit drawn. It may not be the expression those who knew him long ago would have expected, but the intervening loss of two sons surely takes its toll on any man. He doesn't go out of his way with any effusive greetings, but then again, Oldtown is more his wife's place than his own. He nods in the direction of Marsei, whom he does recognize.

Seated at the Merryweather side of the tables is a kindly-eyed septon in a plain brown robe embroidered with blue and gold stars. He rises and raises his hands for silence and benediction. "Seven who are one, smile upon your servants Miranda and Loryn and bless this feast that comes before us. May we ever find favor in your eyes, may our families ever grow and prosper, and may we remember that all good and loving gifts come from your grace. So may it be, for seventy time seventy years and beyond."

Aralynne forces a smile at Siyu and curtseys awkwardly. "Hi," she says in common with a King's Landing accent. If she is a serving girl she is not doing much serving. Her eyes seem locked to the back of Lady Miranda and what is happening immediately around her. Not the friendliest sort she does not deign to make unprompted conversation with Siyu.

Siyu sips his wine, and he wets his full lips. The exotic pretty boy does appear to be trying some form of conversation, "Rather impressive gathering, they even invited me. I'm not much for chatting with Westorsi nobility, but you at least, looked interested. Intentionally staying out of the way? Against a wall. Interesting enough to have a conversation with." he bows his head politely, "I am Gang Xi Siyu." he gives a full family name. "From Yi Ti." He is at least going to try.

The Marshal of the Northmarch is sufficiently illustrious that he and his lady are seated near indeed to the Tyrells and the Merryweathers — besides, Lady Rowan is the groom's first cousin. As they avail themselves of the traditional bread and salt, the latter in a box shaped like the leaf of an oak tree, they sit quite surrounded by her Hightower kin, and just across from the glowingly pink-and-pinkened figure of Lady Marsei herself. Though at first good manners dictates they be content with an exchange of smiles, when the father of the bride has spoken and the septon has given his blessing, the lady of Goldengrove reaches across the table with a hand and a gentle word: "You look radiant tonight, cousin. Did you find Dorne agreed with you?"

Miranda bows her head as the priest invokes the blessing. Once he sits, she moves away from her chair to start greeting guests. She heads for the knights - Malcom and the unfamiliar Rycherd. She'd go say hello to Marsei and Margot but the high table is starting to be served the first of seven courses and the two are conversing.

The servants, some in green and some in blue, start to lay out the first course. Sliced sausages in a spicy mustard, pastries stuffed with various savory fillings, beer-cheese dip and fruit preserves with bread and buttermilk biscuits, and shrimp and tiny fishes rolled in salts.

"Aralynne," the pale cute girl says by way of introduction to Siyu, "I'm just doing my job. I'm supposed to guard Lady Miranda." She is remains in her relaxed stance and takes a bite out of her apple. The ostentation of the feast does not appear to appeal to her given she does not join in the repast. Maybe she will eat later.

A modicum of Marsei's warmth toward Margot transfers onto Antony in greeting by default, but there is something ever-so-slightly reserved in her eyes in the moment before she looks away to receive the septon's benediction with full attention. She's as pleased by the religious words as by anything else — more, perhaps, her silence full of respect worthy of prayer in the Starry Sept itself. "And you as elegant as ever, cousin," she says across the table to Margot afterward, leaning slightly toward her — not so far into the table to be anything but neat and well out of the way of the servants laying down the first course. "It was a lovely visit! And eventful," she answers, "but I'm glad to be home."

Antony perhaps wisely does not comment upon how Lady Marsei looks after her trip to Dorne. In fact, he doesn't comment upon anything. He is solemn and quiet for the blessing. And seems just about equally solemn and quiet for the first course. He eats left-handed, though he was never left-handed before, was he?

Siyu ahs, very faintly, "A body guard, on alert, feeling anxious by all of the random people around. Lax security, a mass of people, no ability to filter out friend from foe. Too many exits to watch, too many people…" he glances back at Aralynne, "If something were to happen you have dozens of knights not to mention any number of willing swords hoping for reward for "saving" a noble. Only a fool would plan a brazen attack. If you're not going to be tasting her food and drinking her wine, you cannot actually do anything to help. I would at least try to relax." he offers the cup, "And it is very good wine."

Malcolm adopts a posture of prayer with the look of one long accustomed to it. For all his flamboyant mode of dress, he seems to take the Septon's prayer seriously, and for all him seldom being seen in the vicinity of the Sept, his expression suggests honest belief and not put on piety. He bows again and murmurs sincere congratulations to the Lady Miranda. Then he turns to the stranger knight with the Lannister looks near whom, he appears to have been seated, "I am Ser Malcolm Storm, acknowledged of Kellington, sworn to House Stark. Please pardon my forwardness in adressing you, but you look familiar. You wouldn't happen to have pounded me to a pulp at my first tourney a couple of years ago in the melee?" He says this with good natured humor and a touch of real curiousity.

Aralynne doesn't warm to Siyu if that is the reaction that he intends to garner from her. Her stare is not cold but neutral when she gazes at him. "True - but it is not the specific responsability of said knights and retainers to protect Lady Miranda it is mine. And I am a highly trained observer - if anything were slipped into her food at the feast at least I have a better chance than anyone of noticing it." She holds up a hand refusing the wine. "I rarely drink. I may later."

Miranda has gone to meet with a few of those nights. She is quite glad Malcom asks it of the Lannister, as she doesn't quite place him. She pauses nearby to register on their radar while listening in so she can hook a name to the face. No doubt her intended is doing similar with other guests; it's a big crowd and the two of them are quite popular in Oldtown.

Siyu sips lightly, "Ah well, so much for trying conversation. I suppose if you're paid and sword I can understand it. But I left my guards at the door." he says and waves it off. Moving away from Aralynne and back into the crowd.

Rycherd murmurs his congratulations to Lady Miranda as she approaches and introduces himself to both of them, "I am Ser Rycherd Hill, acknowledged of Lannister and sworn to the House." He gives a little smile, "Although, my sponsor, Lady Chessa Lannister once held Tyrell as her surname so I am here with her retinue and to of course attend the tourney." He gives a wolfish smile, "I am somewhat well known on the jousting circuit." He's not sure if the two of them have fought before.

After achieving a brush of fingertips Lady Rowan sits straighter again herself, effortlessly dignified; she thanks her cousin for the compliment with a broadening of her smile, but then lowers her eyes as she mentions, "I feel so drab, in such company…" She looks up again in time to murmur a word of thanks to a girl servant reaching past her with plates, and to voice a preference for lemon water rather than wine. "Of course it is always a pleasure to return to Oldtown," she adds neutrally. "One does hear such extraordinary rumours of the Dornish and their conduct… Is their land as foreign as we imagine, do you suppose? Now that you have seen it for yourself?"

Aralynne merely nods at Siyu as he retreats. She ghosts Miranda moving from her corner standing a few feet behind the lady her arms folded behind her back. Though she is not super intereted in the meeting's and greetings of her charge she can't help but eavesdrop. An old habit.

Marsei is particularly fond of the fruit preserves and biscuits, avoiding the spicy mustard, having had her fill of spicy food delivered from the kitchen of the Daynes. "It was…" she pauses to consider, "both different and similar. I suppose it wasn't entirely what I expected! Granted… I admit I did not stray far from where I was staying, in the gracious company of the Daynes. I'm told there are great spans of desert beyond, and that Sunspear is a far different sight than Starfall." She turns her smile on Antony, and there is no longer any hint of reservation as she asks curiously, "Have you ever been to Dorne, Lord Rowan?"

Malcolm thinks it over, "Ah! I think the mountain of a man had Lannister colours and not reversed. You have the look of him though." He says that in a tone that suggests compliment. His accent is lower gentry Stormcoast lilt, and though he's careful to make himself clear to Reach and Westlands ears, he makes no attempt to hide the barely noble lilt that marks him as much as his name and tendancy to wear his bastard colours. He gives him a roguish grin, "I suppose we'll be crossing lances on the morrow, if we haven't afore time. Well met!" He gives Miranda a sunny smile, "It truly is a pleasure to see Ser Loryn settling down at last, and with such a bride. he is a lucky man."

"On Sunday," Miranda clarifies for Malcolm with an easy smile. She curtsies at his kind words. "You are most kind. We are both blessed in one another; the Gods set us to one another on the very steps of the Starry Sept. I am sure one or another of his mummers will 'enact the story of our romance' tomorrow at the wedding. The tourney is to follow the day next." Rycherd is given a less familiar but no less warm smile. "Welcome to Garden Isle, Ser. The Westerlords are always welcome in our company here."

"I fought in the Stepstones, which are near enough," Antony answers Marsei's conversational foray. "And we can't say the Dornish helped us much there." He looks Marsei over for a moment, perhaps considering her relations and alliances to determine how much he ought to say. "Of course, that was some years ago. Wasn't it." He sets down his utensil to take some wine. "Now I imagine everything is quite different."

Siyu is left wandering as the others are lords and ladies or at least known bastards. He chats, makes polite conversation, eats drinks, various things. Makes an appearance as a Yi Ti. Though the novelty has worn off with his year or two here.

"Thank you for having me here. Lady Chessa Lannister remembers her maiden roots and appreciates the hospitality of Merryweather and Tyrell families," Rycherd tells her. His accent is learned, almost perfectly like a high born noble. He was raised almost along side his legitimate brothers so the bastard has been well trained and given time to pursue academics. He then turns back to Malcolm, "Ahh, I am not a mountain but I do promise to give you some exercise on Sunday."

Miranda curtsies to the pair and moves to greet Siyu. She knows him from somewhere… Her brows knit as she looks at the exotic young man. "Seven blessings to you! Thank you for joining us on this joyous occasion! Are you enjoying the food and drink?" Speaking of food, the second course is being laid out…

Soup course - steaming toureens are brought forth in silver chased with mermaid handles. Barley stew - a more common fare with vegetables. Bean and bacon soup. Mushrooms with venison. Chestnut soup, and a sweet pumpkin soup served chilled.

Aralynne sidles up to her mistress standing but a few short feet behind her. Concealment is impossible at this stage so she simply stands behind Miranda like a misplaced ornament. She does not partake of any food. Again she comes across Siyu offering him and the others speaking to Miranda another awkward curtsey.

Malcolm nods to Miranda, "Sunday, yes." To the knight, "I'd like that. I do enjoy testing myself against the best and half the fun is seeing the styles of people I've not fought before. I keeps a man sharp. Will you mellee or just joust?" He adds, "Oh! The food here is always impressive.

Lady Rowan is eating little enough; like Lady Marsei she is drawn at once to the fruit preserves and the fine fresh bread, but once she has it she really only plays with it. She looks between her husband and her cousin, nodding gravely to each in turn as they speak. She has nothing to say of the Stepstones, for that is a part of Lord Rowan's life of which she remains purely ignorant; she only nods more deeply, perhaps in respect, and breaks off another small piece of bread to dip in a dish of raspberry compote. "… I wonder," she ventures to Lady Marsei, "what was the same—?"

"My preference is melee but I also have a decent seat on a horst and do well at the joust," Rycherd admits to him, "I got my knighthood through my skill in the tourneys on the Westerlands." He gives Malcolm a side ways look, "But it will be interesting to test the North." He gives a friendly laugh and then starts to partake in the second course served.

Siyu ahs at Miranda, he bows his head most politely, "Blessings on your house and yourself Lady Miranda." he says most politely, "I am certainly, the wine of the Tyrell is quite exceptional, and of course the food is generous in proportion. Great pains have been taken to invite all who would celebrate. It is a fantastic feast yes." he smiles warmly.

"It depends who you ask," Marsei replies to Antony; a would-be diplomatic answer, were it not for the conversational warmth in her tone, bordering on humour. "I know there are some who would prefer conflict with Dorne," she says more regrettably. During the briefest pause to sip from her goblet while the second course is served, her gaze casually wanders, drawn to the future bride and groom; it's Miranda's shadow she pays mind to, however, and is very nearly distracted from her conversation by giving Aralynne an odd, studying look. " … but truly," she glances to and fro and determinedly picks back up to Rowans, "everyone was so lovely in Starfall. Prince Torren is most civil and determined on peace." On that note, she nods thoughtfully and smiles at Margot, "The people. That's what's the same. At least… at heart, I think. And their faith." A pause and her smile quirks, sillier. "And the dance steps, at least early in the evening."

"It would be more troublesome now, conflict," Antony answers Marsei. He's eating a decent amount, not terribly partial to one dish over another. "Even if there are some of us who best know what we are about when we are on the field."

"We met in… the Quill, yes?" The bride-to-be smiles brightly at Siyu . "I was in my wimple then, no doubt I looked quite different." Miranda now is dressed as a noblewoman of means, her Merryweather colors and crest very clearly emblazoned on her gown. "But how can one forget such as yourself? I am honored you share in my joy, goodman."

Malcolm eats heartliy, but only sips his wine. "In my case it was hunting outlaws on the March with Ser Corbin Rogers…. I serve the Starks, by I'm Stormlands born and bred. I'm personal guard to the heir of Winterfell, but I send half my purses home to Kellington, as my mother's people have more rocks and kin than coins…." He must have caught something of what the Great nobles are discussing as he adds, "I hope the Princess Visenya's marriage will bring us lasting peace. Our bit of Coast gets raided regular when there's trouble with Dorne.

Siyu considers, and blinks. A cold realization behind his eyes, "Ah, yes, Ah…as a…Septa? Yes?" he laughs nervously. He did finally piece that together, but it was not obvious with the drastic change of costume. He appears slightly more nervous but he bows again. "We did in fact, yes. I was…in a much more dour mood no doubt. Those times ere rather painful for me. Still I offer you good luck and fortune. The way of my people. I am honored to be invited." he glances at Aralynne. Who so recently rejected his conversation. Well now it's double awkward. A line of sweat forming on his brow.

As Aralynne flanks Miranda a rather tipsy knight scuffs her on the backside. The small thief's face has barely concealed fury on it. But it is not her feast and she does not make a fuss. She's not a person to cross at the best of times.

Unsurprising with the liquor flowing freely…

"I serve as personal guard to the heir of Casterly Rock, my half brother, but I was raised on Lady Chessa's estate so sometimes Lord Lorn allows his aunt to use me as escort for these functions," Rycherd admits to the other man, "I don't mind. It's good to get out and join the tourneys." He does give a respectful look when Malcolm mentions how he got his knighthood, "And I hope for peace as well. Trouble with Dorne is not something that anyone should want."

The juggler does a final piece of his act. A large metal sphere representing the world, an apple representing the sweetness of life, and a juggling pin representing… juggling. All three are moved deftly through the air with his taking a bite of the apple on each passing toss. It's met with applause and cheers from the crowd.

The cold chestnut soup is Lady Rowan's choice from amongst the considerable second course — and Lady Marsei's opinion, from amongst those she is in a position to hear. She smiles across the table and, after a taste of the soup, lets her spoon rest upon the edge of her bowl. "Surely we all benefit from peace," she agrees quietly, "difficult though it may be to make it between neighbours who have been so long at odds. I think it will never come more easily than now, though — if we defer it to another generation, they will have only a greater burden of history to set aside…"

Miranda smiles at Siyu and asks, "Will you be attending any of the wedding games? I know there's a tourney, but Loryn is hoping I will host an archery tourney before hand…"

Siyu ahs faintly, "I am not sure I would. I mean there are a lot of people. I am not very good with weapons myself. Haha. I am just a merchant of course. Perhaps I will. Maybe for a bet or two." he tries to offer some more pleasant platitudes. "I am only really good with my hands after all, as piteous as that is." he tries to joke.

The juggler done, a dog and bird act takes the stage. Exotic parrots from the Summer Isles, dancing dogs, and even a cat in a ruffled collar looking like it will kill every single human it can sink claws in to.

Malcolm ducks his head, "I fear there are so many Lannisters about, I'm not sure exactly which is which. My Lord is Carolis Stark, the Winter Rose. His borther is Lord Cregan, Warden of the North. I remember… I think it was a Soren Lannister and a… was it Lorys? Edwyn was my squire for a bit, but he hadn't the focus for my training regimine and I think his fatrher called him home to Lannisport. Which one is your half brother?" He aplauds the juggler.

Still steaming Aralynne folds her arms and watches Miranda's back. Content to wallflower even thoguh she is no where near a wall. She regards the cat with passing interest in the performance. Perhaps it is totemic for her.

After a round of delighted clapping at the jugglers, Marsei nods to the Rowans — difficult to remain serious, after such enthusiasm, but she seems to approach all things with optimism. Including her pumpkin soup. "Yes," she agrees. "How well-said, cousin. From my visit, I feel … it could be a time of change — when … those of us who wish for lasting peace must speak for it." She lifts her delicate brows and adds, "Particularly with the false rumours coming out of Dorne. Oh!" She puts her spoon down with a little clink, eyes wide. "What a pretty bird— ! Oh, but that poor cat."

Miranda pouts at Siyu. Gambling makes her twitch but the former septa doesn't comment. "I am glad you will enjoy yourself al lthe same,' she says politely, curtseying. But then she makes her way over to the lords and ladies as they enjoy the feast. Clearly Miranda is missing out on the delicious courses as they're served and set forth. But what bride can eat before her wedding day anyhow, right?

Antony has nothing to say about jugglers or false Dornish rumors. He eyes the cat. Nor does he forget to eat.

The cat is wishing it was a dragon and could reign fire down on all the humans. Clearly.

Siyu does wipe his brow as he manages to avoid upsetting the bride. He goes to find someplace slightly more quet and away from the festivities as he'll eat and have another drink.

"Ser Lorn Lannister, heir to Jason Lannister, Lord of Casterly Rock," Rycherd tells Malcolm softly at their table, "We share the same father and I was born a few weeks before Lorn." Which is not a good thing when you're a bastard and he shares a look with Malcolm that he might understand, "It was thought best if I was raised by Jason's twin, Tyland and his wife, Chessa. They had no children of their own so…I had the benefit of their full attention. Once I reached my knighthood, it made sense for me to serve at Lorn's side."

It is always possible for the Rowans to remain sober and pensive. The juggling might as well be going on in a different kingdom. Whilst Lord Rowan sits there in a brooding, manly silence, his lady drinks another shallow spoonful of her chestnut soup and murmurs, "Of course I still see so few people, but nonetheless…" A faint clearing of her throat. "A dreadful business. I cannot say I had great esteem for Ser Jason Tarly whilst he lived, but I would not have wished him so dreadful a death, so far from his home. You must know the truth of it, cousin…?" she suggests gently. "One hardly knows what to believe."

While the dogs start to dance on their hind-legs, the dull grey parrot on the man's shoulder starts to talk in a human voice to the stunning delight of many. The servants slip in and remove the first course adn set out the third - all manner of greens grown on the Merryweather lands. Onions in gravy, turnips in butter, sweetgrass salads, summer greens with peacans, and a selection of fresh fruits - apples, pears, grapes, and cherries all served in baked shells resembling the cornucopia- their fmaily crest.

Aralynne leaves Miranda for a moment deciding to approach the cat. Her own reactions being like a steel trap she moves in pantherishly assessing how the animal regards her. This is perhaps the only part of the entertainment she finds engaging. It's not clear whether the girl is trying to pat the agitated beast or not.

Antony doesn't seem too terribly concerned about how Jason Tarly may or may not have met his end. He looks down the table to note who else is in attendance.

Malcolm does sympathize, not being on the best of terms with his cousin the heir, despite have no ambitions of his own in that direction and being a good decade younger. "The politics of these things can be complicated, but it is good you were given a gentleman's upbringing. So many have had it worse than we in that department. I do not envy my noble cousin, he toils over account books and barely has timne to hunt once or twice a fortnight, but I have travelled far and can live here, pursuing the life of a swordsman." He thinks, "Is Ser Lorn the one with the curly hair used to spend a lot of time at the Quill a few years ago? Or was that the other one…? I am sorry. I am terrible at keeping people straight."

"I do," Marsei confirms, her voice dipping lower and her perpetual smile proving that it can fall after all, even in the presence of dancing canines. "While it… is true he was guilty of a horrible crime, it was… not at all right, what happened. I know the truth of it, but…" she hesitates, empathy upon her face. "It is too ghastly to speak of on such an occasion," she decides, but her lingering look at Margot - and even Antony despite his apparent disinterest — suggests she would very much like to tell her story, at another time. A talking parrot fills in her silence, at any rate, and Marsei finds the opportunity to glimpse Miranda nearby.

"Lady Miranda!" she calls out, though her soft voice is only raised in cheer and only slightly in volume. She sits up particularly straight in her chair, eager to grasp the chance to talk to the lady of the hour. "The garden is always so very beautiful, yet I have never seen it look more beautiful than it does today. I can only imagine your wedding will be even lovelier."

The cat gives Aralynne a regal stare as she draws nearer. Apparently it dislikes the notion that humans approach -it-. A claw rakes out but the bodyguard deftly draws back before it can draw blood. It hisses a warning, drawing the attention of the minder. "Oh, mistress, don't bother Master Smushypuss. He's rather particular."

Lady Rowan glances about at the entertainers, the merrymakers, the animals — and the bride-to-be, whose gaze she catches for just a moment, long enough to give her a small nod and an encouraging smile. "… Of course," she agrees, looking back to Lady Marsei; "perhaps another time? We are gathered together to celebrate, after all. Are we not, my lord?" This with a smooth, not at all pointed nod to the silent man seated at her side.

Rycherd thinks for a moment and admits to Malcolm, "Ser Lorn's hair is a little wavy but I wouldn't exactly call it curly. You might be thinking of another." Because the Quill is not ringing any bells with him, "We've been mostly at Casterly Rock and only recently arrived at the city." He gives a shrug because there are quite a bit of Lannisters running about, "I agree…it can be hard sometimes to keep them straight."

Aralynne's dodge is not the conventional defensive manoeuvre that one would expect from the help. She pulls back like a fighter would adopting some form of Essosian combat stance before retreating. She does not talk to the handler merely flashing a small smile and turning tail to return to Miranda's side as her 'shadow'.

Miranda gives her warm eager smile to the Rowan lord and lady and the Flower of Oldtown. "I am so pleased you could all join us tonight. No doubt we won't be able to make such rounds at the wedding so I am happy I can escape the table for a little while," she says with a giggle. "I cannot wait to see the final decor - all the flowers were brought in on little wagons from Highgarden's rose-beds in tiny potted jars so guests can take some home and enjoy the summer scent," she tells Marsei.

Antony gives a mild nod in the direction of the noblewoman whose help he once asked as a septa, though perhaps smiles are less forthcoming from him because he does not have a lady's fellow-feeling for the bride-to-be as his wife perhaps does. He leans slightly to say something quiet to his wife.

Malcolm's eye is caught by the Lady creeping after the cat, his own body guard instincts sending him notice of anomolous movement before his brain catches up to ewhat he's actually seeing. Still he watches her out of the corner of his eye. He casts an aproving glance at something the Lady Marsei has said, before going back to watching the cat battle. He must have caught something in Ser Rycherd's face, for he says, "But you are new in town. The Quill is a respectable Inn with clean kitchens and good straw in the beds. I stayed there when I first came to town… I do remember some Lannisters running with the Whimsey crowd, but I was not travelling in so high company back then, and didn't know any of them except for the Tyrells…" His face is impassive, the whole complicated history with Lannisters and Tyrells from back then being full of undiplomatic and occationally sore subjects. "The Quill serves excellent cider, and there is often very good music.

"I will have to check it out," Rycherd tells Malcolm with a smile, giving the impression he meant nothing by his words. He then excuses himself, "I was expecting Lady Chessat to arrive at the feast by now. I'm afraid I must cut my meal short and go check on her." He then starts to gather his things so he can head out.

"Oh, from Highgarden!" Marsei exclaims, captivated by the notion. "What a lovely idea, the roses. And how generous of the Tyrells. Prince Dhraegon will be thrilled to have a rose from Highgarden at the Hightower. He's terribly sorry he can't attend. All this travel and excitement recently has been so exhausting, you understand," she says to the brim with sincerity and sweet sympathy for her absent husband. The motion near the ruffled cat almost but doesn't quite draw her attention; rather, she halfway glances, as though trying not to notice Aralynne returning to Miranda's periphery.

Since the cat has become an object of notice, the exotic birds take off to roost (temporarily one hopes) in the garden trees. The tamer takes a long whipstick with a dangling feather on the end and starts to wave it around the cat's face. The cat bats it away indignantly. It dangles again but moves up higher so the cat is forced to stand on his back paws. Soon the cat is walking on his hind legs as a dog might - only this is a far rarer sight.

"The pleasure is ours, to share in your good fortune," insists Lady Rowan to Lady Miranda, smiling tranquilly and speaking with just enough force to be heard over the hubbub. A delicate calculation. One to which she is accustomed. "My little garden here would be a poor one without cuttings from the Hightower; I shall look forward very much to planting a Tyrell rose amongst them," she adds. But then Lord Rowan seeks her attention and her smile fades as she inclines her own head nearer his, the edge of her Myrish lace mantilla just brushing against his hair. She nods, absently. Lady Miranda and Lady Marsei are still speaking; when she finds a suitable pause, she interjects another few low words. "But I hope you will forgive us, Lady Miranda — and convey our compliments to your intended — if we slip away from the revels whilst all eyes are upon that poor cat…" A nod to the beast and its handler. "I'm afraid the heat of the day has not agreed with me," and she lowers her eyes, giving a small apologetic shake of her head, "and my lord has just reminded me of the promise I gave him that I should not stay too late."

Miranda nods in understanding. "Travel doesn't always sit well with everyone," she says of the absent prince. "But I do hope he will join us for the wedding. I'm sure he will enjoy the children's masque they're putting on of Ser Loryn and his Stark friend defeating the Questing beast. Rather charming presentation they did for him." She glances at the walking cat and shakes her head. Such an odd sight. "I've seen bears do that before," she murmurs. The Rowan lord and lady are given a polite curtsey. "Thank you both for sharing the happy day with us. We shall see you at the wedding proper, I pray?"

Antony rises and puts out a hand that his lady might take to help get herself and her gorgeous if understated dress out of her chair.

Malcolm looks concerned for the Lady Rowan's health. Despite not having met her, he bows to her on her departure. His salute to the departing Hill is friendly enough. "Ser Loryn and Ser Andolyn were knighted on the strength of it…." By him, of course, but this is not mentioned.

Miranda bites her lip as she starts to giggle girlishly. "They picked the biggest boy to be you," she confides, hoping she didn't just ruin a surprise.

Marsei is quite in awe of the animals, giving a little giggle at the cat's antics and clutching her hands together beneath her chin as she watches. She is not so enrapt that she does not first give a respectful nod to the Rowans as they rise to leave. "I will be sure to visit soon," she tells Margot in parting with the tone of a promise. To Miranda, then, "The Questing beast? Oh! If he does have the misfortune of missing it, I'll be sure to remember every detail to tell it back!"

Lady Rowan slips her napkin onto the edge of the table and, with a warm but fleeting smile only for Lady Marsei on the farther side of it, rests her hand upon her lord's and allows him to help her up. "Of course," she assures Lady Miranda easily; "we are looking forward to it so much," she claims, as spokesperson for all Rowans present. To Lady Marsei she adds, "Please… We should so like to hear your tales of Dorne. And I hope His Grace will be feeling quite himself again tomorrow, and that we shall have the pleasure of his company at the wedding as well as your own. Good evening, cousin." And then, again to Lady Miranda, offering her empty hand to clasp the young bride's in farewell: "Seven bless and keep you, my dear, on this last night."

Miranda closes her hand around Margot's. "Thank you my lady. I will keep you in my prayers during my vigil tonight." Although she's a widow on her second marriage, a maiden's vigil in the sept just feels right for her. "Thank you for coming, Lord Rowan. Seven keep you both as well."

"All blessings for the occasion," Antony returns quietly to Miranda.

The cat dances and hates life, the dogs backflip and dart, and the birds talk and flutter about brillantly in their plumage. Meanwhile, the main courses are brought out. Ducks and chickens, roasted in honey-garlic and stuffed with cloves. Roasted crabs in butter, trouts backed in clay, and a goose roasted in mulberry sauce.

Lamb in a dressing of fresh mint and basil, mutton chops in a broth of ale and onions, beef ribs crusted in herbs and garlic with a bit of dry cheese… and even a cornish hen shoved inside a chicken shoved inside a goose.

The musicians strike up and start to play so people can dance away their dinner, the poor cat dragged away by his collar and the dogs tossed bones from the tables by the guests. Although it does get some of the goose so the cat has at least something happy to remember.

A light repast is offered before dessert - white cheeses, stewed plums, a cold fruit soup and sweetcorn on the cob. The desserts are far finer. Cakes in lemon, strawberry, and blueberry. Iced blueberries and strawberries in cream. And candied rose-petals floating in small bowls of sweet wine.

Malcolm is not a drinker. While he samples all that comes past him with gusto, he's barely into his second cup of wine at the end of the feast, and may be amoung the soberest gentleman in the room, for all his obvious joy for the groom.

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