|Summary:||After the visit with Micaella, Marsei expresses concerns — not only about the young woman at the inn, but a more personal puzzle.|
|Date:||January 10th, 2017|
|Related:||Care and Memory, all things Fossoway|
It's not long after the door to the Golden Maiden Inn closes behind them that Marsei says thoughtfully, "I ought to have asked her what the caravan was carrying. Oughtn't I?" The pauses briefly in front of the view of the Honeywine, looking out at the riverboats. "They are merchants; surely, if they were attacked… their goods were stolen, and maybe they could be found again…?" She's not entirely sure on that count, but hopeful, and looks to Camillo as if expecting him to know more about the common path of stolen goods. "I thought of it, but she seemed so unwilling to speak of it… of course I don't blame her; she's faring better than I would be in her position."
Camillo tilts his head. "Perhaps, my lady," he says. "But it is her choice, I would think, what she is willing to say. When was the attack? Brigands might be far away by now."
"Some things are simply … hard to speak about," Marsei says in very soft defense of the young woman. She gives a little sigh and turns from the river to take up a stroll south. The Hightower has a way of looking both far away and immensely close at the same time, its sheer size tricking the eye at a distance. "The days keep passing since the attack. Still — someone who yet lives must have seen something that can lead to them," she says. "Perhaps… perhaps Loryn got more details in the earlier telling of her story."
"Yes, my lady," Camillo agrees. "And it is sometimes not worth the pain. But it would be wise to ask Ser Loryn, so long as he does not take that as a cue to interrogate the young lady," the servant continues, tone gentle out of caution at overstepping himself. "I gather Ser Loryn can be zealous in most of his undertakings."
Camillo's observation about Loryn prompts a soft exhale of air that doesn't quite make it to a full-fledged laugh, but is briefly amused, all the same. "That is true," she agrees, smiling. "But— in this case, I think he was rather eager to pass her into the care of the Hightowers." A reprieve from the drizzle proves temporary, and she pulls her hood onto her head.
"Yes, my lady," Camillo agrees. "And to criticize the slowness of the response as well, I'm afraid." He hasn't brought a hooded cloak today, but he seems not to take particular exception to being rained on.
The lady's brows raise, disconcerted by the thought of such criticism. She seems ready to query further, but says instead, "I… I will assure him, too, we are doing the best we can." She's quiet for a spell, simply watching the hem of her gown and cloak sway together as she walks. When she speaks, it's with an altogether different disquiet. "When you worked at Cider Hall…" She begins, sounding puzzled; her uncertainty almost causes her to stop her line of thought altogether. "Do you remember— a man named Roberd Flowers?"
Camillo walks quietly with his eyes on the streets, perhaps to be sure that he should not lead Marsei into a patch of freshly-forming mud, but the question of the name from Cider Hall gets his attention. He looks to her face. "Yes, my lady," he answers, "I recall the name, though we did not cross paths in person often."
"While I was there, not terribly long before I left, he went away. To the Crownlands, if I recall. Maybe Lannisport? On business, though I'm not certain for what task or for whom. Anyhow… last I heard he'd been injured, and it must've stopped him from travel for an awfully long time. Lady Jana is getting married…" The latter is quite a neutral announcement, until she hurries half-breathlessly to clarify, "Not to Roberd— !" That would be a more unlikely match in the eyes of the public than she and Dhraegon, and a universally horrible idea besides. "She sent a message with a new squire who was to pass through Oldtown with his knight. Any message she sends is … bound to be of import. To me. But this one was…" Without Jana here to peer at, Marsei looks quizzically at the rain-slick street in front of her. "Two lines. The first, about her engagement. The second, that Roberd Flowers has at last returned to Cider Hall. It's been perplexing me so ever since. I can't imagine why I need to know."
Camillo narrows his eyes at the scene in front of them as he tries to put the pieces together. "Was…Master Flowers…well-disposed toward you, my lady?" he asks carefully after a long pause to consider the phrasing of such a question.
The fact that Marsei does not have an immediate, reassuring answer is, perhaps, answer enough. She thinks it through, a small frown tugging at her lips. "I have to say he … was never especially disposed toward anyone," she says carefully, even though there is no one to tiptoe around when it comes to Roberd's character, such as it is. "I have no reason to think he had anything against me in particular, though he … had always seemed relatively inconsiderate toward all the women at Cider Hall. I suppose I recall him disliking Jarvas confiding in me over matters of business," she reasons, uncertain.
"Toward the women," Camillo repeats thoughtfully. "Yet Lady Jana takes interest in his return." He blinks a drop of rain out of his eyelashes. "My lady, I may still know a few people there. Would it be helpful if I should…make inquiries as to the circumstances of his return? Discreetly?"
"Would you?" Marsei replies, her voice loftier than a moment ago, looking up from the street to Camillo, wide-eyed and hopeful. "I would appreciate your inquiry. I'm sure it will amount to… nothing, what could it be, after all, yet I can't shake the feeling that there's something I'm meant to discover. What is the message for, otherwise? How strange of Jana."
Camillo seems mildly surprised that his proposal meets with such a ready agreement. "I should be happy to, my lady. I will make arrangements to do so immediately. The matter can easily remain between us until we know more. If there is anything at all to know."
"Thank you," Marsei replies earnestly, ducking her head down. She pulls her hood a bit further forward as a fall breeze stirs the otherwise warm drizzle. "I'm sure I'll feel silly when it's all for nothing."
"I'm certain that it is…no reflection on you, my lady," Camillo assures, longish hair beginning to adhere close to forehead and neck with the damp. He pushes his forelock back to keep the water from running into his eyes. "We will make sure that it shall not be, in any case."
Marsei looks up again suddenly at Camillo's words, but says nothing, only nods her head in subtle gratitude. She remains pensive as they walk, but less caught up in her head; more at ease, now that Camillo is on the case.