|One Good Day|
|Summary:||Tybalt, Camillo and Sal enact a not-so-nefarious plan.|
|Related:||Sharing Is Caring|
Docks - Oldtown
The docks are lined with a vast array of wood-and-stone piers, cranes, and winches dedicated to the unloading and loading of cargo and passengers alike. Here, Oldtown's life-blood of food, medicine, and other necessary goods are brought into the city in large quantities, from every kind of ship imaginable.
Day and night, the docks are abuzz with activity, packed with throngs of stevedores, sailors, passengers, rivermen, fishermen, peddlers, and the veritable fleet of ships arriving and departing. There is a distinct smell of salt, rotting timbers, and fish here.
Oldtown's mighty fleet of warships sit at anchor here, some leaving, or arriving, from patrol duties. They announce their presence with the clamor of sailors' voices, and the deep throb of the drum beating time for the oarsmen aboard.
Tybalt carries their meaty lunch in a sack, yesterday's leftovers. He is dressed in his good tunic, face and hands scrubbed as yesterday, and he is armed with Axe and knives for her defense. He has the blanket and a cheap clasp to use as a cloak, and the empty barrel waiting near the docks. "You mind carrying the sack as we will need our hands?"
Camillo is in his medium-quality green shirt, with the expertly-mended sleeve. He looks his usual servant self, and solemn. Which is also usual.
"Yeah," Sal agrees, sounding a bit sour now that she's in the midst of this plan; her young companion, meanwhile, roams about in circles with his toy ship as though he hasn't a care in the world. Before she grabs the sack, though, first things first: she grabs the blanket, tossing it over her head and shoulders. It's a quick transformation. She's pulled her hair back and with her shirt, trousers, belt and boots under the shadow of the makeshift cloak, she would easily pass for one of the men helping to load cargo at a glance. She shoves the clasp through the fabric and takes the sack, cracking a smile despite her misgivings. "Leave you two to the hard labour, eh?"
Tybalt gives her the hint of a smile, amusement in his eyes, "Aye, well you are our guests." He goes down on one knee and addresses the lad, "You'll need to hide quiet in this barrel. It will be a grand adventure and we will carry you like the famous sailor Synbaed to sneak you onto the ship, yes?"
Camillo isn't one to be talkative when nefarious plans are afoot. He does note Sal's ill ease, and then watch Tybalt's interaction with the boy with quiet satisfaction.
Sal plants her hand on top of the boy's head, which serves both to steer him toward the barrel and to give his sandy hair a good ruffle. "You're good at hidin' like a mouse, yeah," she encourages him, and after a pleased smile up at Tybalt, he makes a rush for the barrel, all fun and games. Sal narrows her eyes for an instant as though mentally measuring the thing to make sure he'll fit (he isn't the leanest boy).
Tybalt flashes the boy an encouraging smile, less pretty than it was meant with the scar and the missing teeth that side. Tybalt has chosen a barrel large enough to hide an adult albeit in a cramped condition on the assumption that would suit the lad well enough.
Camillo nods once the boy is in the barrel. "We're ready, then," he judges. And that's all he says.
Sal steadies the barrel, making sure the boy can clamber in all right. She's more nervous than she is, for certain, but decides to smile over it. Her jaunty smile can be seen more than the rest of her face once she tugs the so-called hood down further. "On our merry way," she says, and slaps Camillo on the back for the mere fact that he looks so solemn. "You're the ones that said all's well and good," she reminds him. "D'ya always look like a glum dog?"
Tybalt tamps down the lid enough to hold, but lightly enough that if the lad is desperate enough to get out, he can push it fee. He has carefully put some air holes in the lid. He nods to Camillo and lifts his end, a quizically look as he tries to guess how Cam will answer.
"They used to call me after a dog," is Camillo's answer to Sal. He doesn't quite take the cue for merriment. At least not yet. He squats down and picks up his end of the barrel.
"Who's they? Everyone?" Sal teases, putting herself in a better mood with the distraction. She steps in close to the barrel, so close as to almost be in the men's way as they head for the docks.
Tybalt shrugs, "Not me." Tybalt doesn't seem to mind. He heads for the large grain ship with Stark wolf insignia, with the sure step of a man who belongs where he is and knows exactly where he is going. His wide shoulders and muscular chest and arms are well built for stevadore work, which he has been known to number among his odd jobs.
"People," Camillo replies. "But no one does anymore." Since Tybalt has the lead end of the barrel, he has but to follow. Though built smaller than Tybalt, he's strong enough to bear half a child and half a barrel.
"Yeah, yeah, buncha spoilsports," Sal says with a laughing scoff that has no real drive behind it; whether she's talking about Tybalt and Camillo or 'people' in general is unclear. Through the docks and onto the Stark ship, there does not seem to be anyone targeting them with suspicious eyes; no one gives a damn about the group of people and a barrel moving aboard. It's true that the chances are slim that Sal would somehow be identified, perhaps none at all with their precautions, but that doesn't stop her paranoia. She keeps a close eye on things, turning her head subtly this way and that even as, contrary to her paranoia, she follows them with a stride as confident as Tybalt's.
There are stevedores loading various sized and weighted barrels onto the ship in advance of tomorrow's departure. One more barrel does not stand out. Apparently he does know the Stark guards, as he nods to them as they pass. He carries the barrel far enough that the height of the ship and the angle makes their doings hard to see from shore before lowering his end and popping the lid.
Camillo seems to relax slightly only once they're well onto the ship. He watches the lid carefully. "We're opening it," he leans forward to say close to the edge Tybalt is prying up. So the boy won't worry that there could be danger.
Sal gives each guard and stevedore in sight a good eyeing, never long enough to be properly eyed back. There's a bit too many of them around for her liking. She smiles a little as Camillo thinks to warn the boy as the barrel opens. "They don't care about a kid runnin' about?" Hopefully not, for the boy pokes his head out, peering up at an angle awkward for his short neck. "S'all good, Cory; we're on a ship, see?"
His climb out of the barrel isn't exactly elegant — he clambers awkwardly halfway onto the deck and shimmies the rest on his belly, quite nearly landing face-first before Sal offers him a hand — but once he's squeezed out, it's like his temporary internment never happened. He looks overjoyed as he takes in their surroundings, and Sal just shakes her head in wonderment.
Tybalt says, "Got permission. I'm known to get on well with Tellur Snow, who is Master of Beasts for Starks. He's not in Town, but I am… granted small favours on the strength of it now and then. Best not to be under foot and keep an eye for falls. They're loading the hull, so as long as we stay away from the ramps and where they are loading, should be fine. This'ns bound for White Harbour and up the Coast after to Karstark land." It is a fine large ship with tall masts. Most of the bustle is where they are loading, along wiith most of the guards."
Camillo knows nothing of the geography Tybalt describes, and so his attention is fixed on the boy's expression now that he sees the ship up close. Camillo can't resist a smile of great satisfaction.
Cory seems to take in what Tybalt says as well, even though the effort to stand still is so gargantuan he practically vibrates. He makes a gesture with his hands, similar to the one he gave the night before. "Thank you," Sal interprets, but the rest is from her, accompanied by a tense shrug: "… for usin' a favour 'n' all."
When he thinks he's in the clear, the boy runs ahead in the opposite direction of the hull, arms wide, still clutching the toy ship, alive with that distinctly childlike sense of exploration. Sal follows at a distance, but seems less worried about him now that they're onboard. There's a certain naivete to his freedom; whatever he's been through, he's still young for his age. Seven, maybe. Eight. Maybe less, maybe more; his silence and baby fat put it into question. Lots of poor boys like him would be getting ready to work if they weren't already, while young nobles would be learning to be a lord.
Sal puts the sack down, hoping there are no rats in the Starks' grain stores, and folds her arms, watching him. The love in her eyes is clear, and so is the protectiveness. "I don't know if I'll ever understand why he loves ships so bloody much," she wonders aloud. "Nothing good ever happened to us at sea."
Tybalt must have caught something in Camillo's expression for he says, "East coast. White harbour is the best port in all of what you call the North. It's a good place to offload supllies for the interior. The really bad Raiding a while back was on the east above white harbour, all the way to the Wall, yes? So they're going to drop off food for the villages still recovering. Some may be offloaded to smaller ships for Bolton…" He stops to gop over the side, "Lands, maybe all the way up to Skagos." He eyes her thoughtfully, "Lads like adventures and ships smell like adventure."
"I suppose a person could go anywhere on a ship," Camillo suggests quietly. "Anything could happen." Perhaps that is why he seems to mistrust them. He looks at the boy. "Anyway, this could be one good day on a ship."
One side of Sal's mouth sneers downward. She doesn't buy Tybalt's reasoning. "I reckon he's had enough adventure for a lifetime," she counters, watching the boy sail his little ship on a big ship. As though none of that adventure ever happened. She glances to Camillo with a small — even slightly grateful — smile for his logic. "Yeah."
Tybalt is watching the boy too, "It gets into a lad's blood and bones. I'd had some rough times aboard ship his age too, but I can't keep away either."
Camillo crosses his arms. "I hope he can remember today, at least. Something to dream about." Whether he means real dreams or goals is unclear.
Tybalt's words worry Sal, yet it is a familiar thought, tired around the eyes; a worry she's worried before. She sighs. "I tell ya — if I prayed, I'd pray he don't grow up to be a sailor." She looks from the exploring boy to Camillo and over her shoulder at the working men. "S'pose if it was a sturdy job like this it might not be so bad. Neverminding the storms… and the raiders… and the pirates. Fuuck." She talked herself out of that notion fast. "Not up to me in the end though, is it."
Tybalt shrugs, "Shall I bleed a cock for you and your lad then? I do not think the Gods will listen to strangers but they are always thirsty."
"That is Tybalt's way of religious offering," Camillo points out softly, just in case clarification is needed.
Camillo's clarification arrives just in time, for the expletive on the tip of Sal's tongue was poised to be loud enough to alert the entire crew to the words 'bleeding cock'. " —y'know I'm good thanks," she says quickly instead, bursting out into a sharp but good-natured laugh after the fact, smiling wide. "Unless ya share a chicken roast after, eh?"
Tybalt does not appear offended by the inexplicable failure of southrons to worship the real gods, being long used to it. He snorts, "We never waste meat. Of course you can have a bit of my cock." this is entirely deadpan and it's impossible to tell if it's innuendo or innocence.
Sal throws her blanket-hooded head back and erupts into laughter all over again, so much that she must clamp her hand firmly over her mouth to muffle the sound. It will, at least, be one good day.