(123-09-20) Tempers, Temperatures, and Trade
Tempers, Temperatures, and Trade
Summary: A Tyrell, a Targaryen, and a sad man carrying a bag walk into a harbourfront…
Date: 20/09/2016
Related: None

It is yet another busy afternoon at the harbour with merchants and captains hurrying to get their day's work done before the sun begins to set and the shady part of the harbour's population crawls out of its hiding places. Among the many people on the quays is one Ser Loryn Tyrell, overseeing the loading of a wagon, pulled by a single horse, with bales wrapped in cloth from one of the store houses.

Among the various figures, some august and some… rather less so, some who are busily labouring away and some… well, also rather less so, is the slender frame of one Lars Costayne. This should come as no surprise to anyone who frequents the area at all, nor should the absolute precision of his tailoring or the faint scent of cologne. What might come as more of a surprise to anyone watching is that he's not sitting in his lovely spot in the shade with a nice glass of wine, watching the work, but is instead following the progress of Loryn's cloth bales with a more than healthy interest, brows furrowed and teeth worrying his lower lip, while his clerk, harassed as ever, stands beside him making notes.

The cart is soon fully loaded and a protective sheet of cheap cloth thrown over the bales to protect them. Loryn has a short quiet conversation with a man so richly clad he is probably the merchant, then nods to the Tyrell guards who have been lurking nearby. They spring into action, two guarding the cart at the front, two at the back. Must be some precious cargo. Another man in Tyrell colours climbs into the cart to take the reins and nudge the horses on. Loryn looks around with an expression of smug content and his eyes fall upon the staring Costayne.

Camillo used to be a much more frequent sight around this harbor, but that was some time ago. Still, there is enough Hightower business and local Oldtown tradition that brings him down now and again. At the moment, he's eating something as he looks out toward the sea, though his gaze is soon attracted by this smug Tyrell and his goods.

Lars's expression of concern melts away as Loryn spies him, turning flawlessly to a bright smile, combined with neat little half bow. The clerk is waved subtly down as he begins to speak, with a 'not now' sort of motion and the Costayne steps forward as he straightens, noting cheerfully, "Wonderful afternoon, isn't it? Almost a shame to have the chaps working so hard! Still, I'm sure they'd rather be lifting textiles than metals any day of the week, hm?" And as he speaks, somehow he's sidled his way so he's just enough in the way of the cart to be a nuisance should the driver decide to nudge the horses along right now.

"Or be mired in the blood and mud of a battlefield.", Loryn points out dryly. The chirpy tone and attitude of fussy officialdom making him immediately suspicious. "Can I help you, my good man?", he asks somewhat sharply, "The hard-working chaps would rather be back at Garden Isle promptly to rest before tomorrow's journey."

Camillo has no trouble in appearing unobtrusive as he conveniently overhears a conversation that interests him. After that brief look at Loryn's retinue, he stands at a more oblique angle to the two men and their discussion. He continues to chew on the joint of whatever small bird he's got, then tosses the bone into the water.

"Oh, no doubt, no doubt," Lars soothes, absently straightening his tunic. "I shouldn't like to keep you any longer than strictly necessary, my lord. Perhaps you might be so good as to sign here," a quick wave for his clerk to produce the appropriate paperwork, "for the four extras you've got on there? It happens a lot," he reassures the other man, "where a fellow sees some marvellous goods, orders a couple more, and then the papers never catch up with it. Frightfully dull, I know, but there you have it. Just below the line, there, if you would?"

"What?" Loryn looks as irritated as he looks annoyed. "I don't know where you learned to count, nor why do you think this is any of your business in the first place.", the Tyrell declares haughtily, eyeing the paperwork like some filthy bug. "I'm not signing anything, these are my uncle's goods to be taken to Highgarden. My uncle Lord Lorant Tyrell of Highgarden.", he adds pointedly, dropping the name like a brick into the conversation.

The sound of dropped bricks carries, but Camillo has no dog in this particular fight. He lifts the flap on his bag that he often carries with him and roots around inside it, though it is anyone's guess whether he's really looking for something or just filling time while he eavesdrops.

"What marvellous taste that gentleman has," Lars approves, nodding wisely. "Honestly, the deep indigo there? Absolutely divine, and so very fashionable this season. He shall look splendid in it!" Rather than being cowed by the irritation, if anything the little man is even more cheerful. "I just need you to state for the Master of Coin that you have the extra bales on board, as it were, though. Do you see? He's so awfully meticulous about these things, and rather insists that we, at the pointy end of his domain, are likewise. Honestly, two ounces of alchemical supplies went astray last month and I declare I shall never hear the end of it! Just below the line, my lord, if you'd be so kind?"

Loryn narrows his eyes at Lars. "The master of coin? The master of bloody coin also known as Orland Hightower?", he asks, voice filled with disdain. He looks like he might have a few choice words to say about the master of coin. But the horse is getting restless and the first Tyrell guard is starting to grumble. "Be on your way!", he calls out to the coachman holding the reins, daring Lars to stop the cart. "The paperwork is all there. Down to the last bale.", he grumbles, pointing his chin towards the merchant who has withdrawn into his store house again.

Basically Loryn Tyrell and Lars Costayne are facing off over a cart filled with bales of cloth. Camillo is eavesdropping. Tyrell tempers are high.

Valaerys had decided - in the capricious way she does, sometimes - that rather than follow her brother and the bulk of their things from the docks to this manse in which they're meant to be staying, that a detour was entirely in order. So rather than walk in toward the town, the young Targaryen wanders along the harborfront, steps ahead of two handmaidens who look far more concerned about the whole affair than their mistress. She ambles down the paved way gowned in light but sumptuous fabrics with little gems woven into the braids accenting the otherwise loose fall of curl. Everything is new and everything is therefore interesting, but the little princess keeps an odd but seemingly effortless distance between herself and those around her. Except… except that there are two men arguing over fabrics and after a sea voyage that seemed as though it might never end, this is just interesting enough to brave the discomfort of coming closer.

"The very same!" Lars enthuses, making no move to step out of the way, save to put a hand up to gently pet the horse's nose as he speaks. "Lovely fellow, takes his work very seriously. Now I really don't want to hold you up any longer than strictly necessary, but sadly it is rather my duty to make sure everything is accounted for, and it's a rum thing but the docket your fellow in there has — hello, old chap!" this added with a smile and a slight wave to the curious merchant in question, as a head pokes out no doubt to see why the cargo hasn't yet left, "— it has eighteen bales of fine cloth on it, all accounted for, correct and tax paid. I tell you what, my lord, shall I send my fellow to bring your chaps a drink or two while we puzzle out why your cart has twenty two bales on it? They look awfully thirsty."

Camillo doesn't appear interested in the argument in the least, though he happens to be standing nearby. Having rooted in his bag for a while, he comes up with a rag to wipe his hands and mouth with.

Loryn's eyes narrow further. "My uncle will not be pleased to hear some minor busybody interfered with his delivery to Highgarden.", he points out, "Your wife will not thank you, when you're all tossed into the street for failing to pay the rent. Not that any sane woman would fall for a weasel like you. Rest assured that this is not forgotten." He angrily grabs whatever paper Lars is waving at him to give it a swift glance. "If the Hightowers are out of pocket, they might well turn to my uncle directly instead of trying some underhanded fleecing.", he growls and scrawls a signature on the paper. "Now get out of my face before I throw you into the river!", he threatens the man.

Lars clears his throat quietly, claiming the paper back and subtly checking the signature. "My lord," he states mildly, stepping back now he's satisfied his duty. "I apologise for your inconvenience. I'm sure it's just the warm weather raising voices and tempers, now, isn't it? Do please pass the warmest regards from my family to your uncle, and I shall pass yours to my lady wife, in the spirit in which I'm certain you meant them."

"You will hear from us.", Loryn threatens darkly, but looks relieved when the cart set into motion with a rumble. Soon enough it's on the way and Loryn heads off following it back to Garden Isle without another look or word for Lars or anyone else loitering in the harbour.

"Perhaps," Camillo observes quietly, at first as if only to the waters of the harbor, though before long he glances in the direction of Lars the harbormaster, "The Tyrells are sensitive on finances just now. After the wedding."

Ah, yes, there it is, the price for her curiosity. Passing Camillo as he watches the scene unfold, Valaerys' hands twitch and then ball into fists. It earns the silent man a long, hard look - almost enough to derail the young woman from her initial quest. Would have been, in fact, had it not been for the passing that moment of Loryn and his goods. She doesn't know the man, but his passing so close leaves her nose wrinkling in something between surprise, confusion and distaste. She shakes with it a moment before squaring her shoulders, lifting her head and choosing to draw closer to the much-abused coin-man. "Is it common in Oldtown to come so close to blows over four bits of cloth?" Aha, so she has been listening - at least somewhat. At least, with this man in particular, the price for her inquisitive nature is familiar and not at all unpleasant. "It is only cloth." And a glance over her shoulder at the comment from the scar-man. "Was it cloth for the wedding, then?"

Lars raises both brows. "Oh, gosh, no. No no no no no! I'm sure it's nothing more than a long day and the warm weather, you know how one can sometimes lose one's sense of scale when one is hot and tired?" The docket, now signed, is casually passed over to the clerk, who tucks it with various other papers and begins to hurry off. Lars, his duty now complete, dusts off his hands and beams a huge smile at both the Targaryen, her attending ladies, and the pigeon bone flinging gentleman behind. "Really, we can be an awful nuisance at the end of the day and I quite sympathise with the poor fellow." Valaerys's question gets due attention and a disarming smile. "I would imagine not, my lady. The colours would be all wrong. She'd look washed out, and I'm sure her ladies wouldn't let her go out unless she looked her absolute best. My guess would be that they'll be for trade, further inland, although there might be a few bolts remaining here. That's not an official comment, you understand," he adds hurriedly, lifting a hand.

Although he did seem to have been speaking to Lars, Camillo's gaze is quick to wander, particularly when someone is looking at him. As someone with apparent Targaryen blood appears to be doing just now. So Camillo does not let his glance at the lady linger into a stare but respectfully drops his eyes instead. He is plainly smallfolk, and conscious of etiquette. He lets the Costayne, with his noble standing, answer the Princess, gaze flickering back up toward that man. "Is there much profit to be made in importing textiles? Where did they come from?"

"Hot?" Surely somewhere along the line, someone must have warned Valaerys that the sense of scale for… well, most things, really, is vastly different for those who do not pulse with dragons' blood - especially when it comes to assessments of temperatures. Surely, someone. But it would seem, judging by the light laughter that trails away into quiet giggles, that either there has been some extreme oversight… or she's forgotten. "But this is… why, this is almost chill, my lord." Hyperbole? Perhaps, but she certainly does not appear to be ill-affected by the beating sun. Camillo's avoidance of her gaze does nothing to put her at ease and she steps to one side as she speaks with Lars so that she can more easily keep an eye on his movements. That she smooths her palms down the front of her skirts when she does it is a mere idiosyncrasy, surely. "My lord, I've been on this soil less than an hour's time," she offers sweetly, the smile still edged with play. "Nothing is official, yet."

"Tyrosh, old chap," Lars tells the other man, as though this were the most obvious thing in the world. "Did you see the colours? The only place you'll have dyes like those is Tyrosh. I think it's hardly spilling confidential information to tell you that much, but if you're looking for the merchant, well, I'm afraid I'll have to offer only stoic silence. It doesn't do for anyone to think that I'm the sort of fellow who'll tell everyone every detail of their trade, does it?" He raises his hat, briefly wiping his brow, before waving the hat forward and offering the young lady a bow. "In which case, my lady," and there's a faint inflection there of question, in case she's not a mere 'my lady', given her colouring, "might I be the first to welcome you to Oldtown. Lars Costayne. I have the dubious honour to act as his grace's representative here of customs and excise." He lowers his voice to a stage whisper, twinkle in his eye nonetheless. "It's not always the most popular duty in the world, as I think we might have just seen."

Camillo doesn't make many extraneous movements. His bag is closed, now, and one hand rests on its cover, the other empty by his side. He listens to Lars without comment on the color of the fabrics, but nods his head once at the next question, rhetorical or not. "I understand, my lord," he says. He gives plenty of space to the man's discourse with the Targaryen, then asks him, "Do you know whether a ship called the Dove has come in today? We are expecting a few items at the Hightower."

"The Dove? Oh, that's a pretty name for a ship. Where does she make berth?" Valaerys' enjoyment of pretty things is certainly no secret - not even on such short acquaintance as this - but Lars' bow and introduction is just flashy enough (and drops just the right names) to regain the bulk of her attention. "You act upon my uncle's behalf?" The question is out of her mouth first, but she does have good manners enough to dip into a shallow little curtsey of her own in reply. "I appreciate your welcome, my lord. I am Valaerys Targaryen, come from Dragonstone with my brother Rhaeyn." She pauses then, a thoughtful frown pinching her brow. "If you are the representative of the King's interests, why did that man behave so poorly? Surely, the interest of the crown is in everyone's interest?"

Lars shakes his head a little as he straightens. "I'm certain his intentions were sound, my lady," he insists amiably. "No doubt he was in a hurry, and an unexpected issue with the goods he'd been sent to collect was the last thing he needed. On any other day I'm sure he would be perfectly charming. As for the Dove, though… do you know, I don't think she's made port yet. That's unlike her. Unless she hit a spot of poor weather, perhaps? I tell you what, son, shall I send word to you when she arrives? I'm sure there'll be a boy here quite prepared to earn a coin or two to run a message to you."

"Yes," Camillo says to Lars. "It is not such a surprise if a ship is delayed a day or two. But I would be obliged if you would send a boy if you can spare him." Then the servant glances to Valaerys. "It is a trade ship, Your Grace, that sails out of Oldtown here and back."

Valaerys takes Lars' assurances in stride, offering a noncommittal hum and a simple, "Of course, my lord. The heat." And though there is unquestionably something that keeps her from venturing closer, Camillo's information is hard to resist. So there's a wavering in her body language, opening more toward the servant but not stepping closer. "A trade ship? For which sorts of goods does it trade?"

"She," Lars interjects, almost apologetically. "A ship is always a she, never an it. It's a sailor thing, I think."

Camillo glances at Lars when he makes his interjection, and does not reply. He looks to the Targaryen instead. "Inconsequential sundries," he claims. "A certain kind of linens have been ordered for one of the rooms, that is all, Your Grace."

"She, of course." It's a small thing, but one that Valaerys had remembered to use before, so there is no censure in her tone for the correction. "Sundries, perhaps, but without the grace of good manners, my good man, the world in which we live would be a darker and more odious place." The way her face breaks out into a bright and playful smile makes it hard to take her very seriously, but the young princess does not seem to mind. "We mustn't offend her, lest she tip to one side and let your linens slide out for the dolphins to use as gowns."

"Rest assured, my lady, that should I spy any passing dolphins in linen frocks, I shall inform this gentleman that his cargo has been sadly lost," Lars intones quite solemnly.

"Yes, your grace," Camillo responds, dipping his head, and adding, "My lord," in case the princess is chiding him for not responding to the customs master. For all the princess's brightness, he seems to take things quite seriously, indeed.

"See that you do," Valaerys responds primly, a good match for the solemnity of her uncle's agent. "And then send someone for me, please. It would be quite a treat to get a glimpse of dolphin fashion this year."

Lars laughs lightly, tucking his hands behind his back and rocking on his heels. "Oh, this season I'm sure it's all about grey. Again. They're awfully predictable. Would it hurt so much, do you think, for a dolphin to accessorise?"

Camillo stands still for the witticisms. Perhaps he doesn't think it his place to joke with nobles. Or perhaps he's trying to think up a good sartorial dolphin joke, but failing.

"Pearls." It isn't so much a linear progression, perhaps, but such is the way of conversation with this particular little dragon. "Pearls and… and amethysts, I should think." Lifting dainty fingers to one of her braids, she unwinds the strands far enough to let two such stones - small but vibrantly violet - fall into the palm of her hand to be extended out toward Lars. "You must see what view they take of these, my lord. I shall await eagerly your report."

Lars lifts a hand to decline, amused smile on his face. "While the offer is no doubt appreciated by our friends in the deep, I think I might give entirely the wrong impression in accepting precious gems from a delightful young lady I've only just met."

"Well," Camillo says softly after a pause, nodding his head at Lars. "If you would be so kind, when the ship comes in, my lord." He seems about to depart.

It is possible - not certain, by any means, as the light can often play tricks with sweet young faces, but possible - that there is a flash of disappointment across Valaerys'. If it does exist, it's only for a moment before being swept aside by an airy shrug as the gems are handed off to one of her handmaidens instead. "They're only amethysts," she replies, but in that same easy, breezy manner. "But I am loathe to besmirch the reputation of an otherwise pleasant acquaintance, so I suppose my curiosity shall remain unsatisfied." Camillo's attempt at departure is noted, but there is something studious in the way she watches him, puzzling him out from a distance such that she forgets entirely to offer even the courtesy of a nod at his excusing himself.

"My wife," Lars explains himself with a faint smile and a lift of his chin towards the upper storey of a nearby building. "I should never hear the end of it. But I fear I'm keeping you from your business. Can I direct you somewhere in Oldtown?"

There's a look of faint surprise at Lars' explanation, raised brows and jaw falling open ever so slightly. "Do not men of the sea all wed dolphin ladies, my lord? I must have been sorely misinformed." The effect of that surprise is ruined - just a bit - by the way her mouth curls up on one side, a smile almost too wicked to fit in such a sweet face. "But you are probably correct. It would be awful to stir Rhaeyn to worry for me so soon. A good day to you, my lord. I hope it will prove less eventful from here." And there is a subtle movement of her hand, a direction to her handmaid to offer the two little gems again if some new understanding has softened the customs master to the idea. Otherwise the girls fall in line behind their mistress as the walk toward the Dragon's Door begins anew.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License