Umbra 13, 228: Bad Poetry in Good Company

Tyrel, Roslin and Nimue discuss the value of verse.


Bad Poetry in Good Company
Summary: Tyrel, Roslin and Nimue discuss the value of verse.
OOC Date: October 17th, 2013
Related: http://daeren.wikidot.com/a-study-in-the-library-on-war-and-women
Players:
Tyrel Roslin Nimue 
Library
Your footsteps are muffled by the thick, dark blue carpeting of the library. This room has been furnished to encourage the pursuit of scholarship and learning: Several large, comfortably cushioned mahogany chairs invite you to sit and read for hours. A few tables and desks of the same deep red wood are provided for more serious studies. The room is well lit with chandeliers.

Heavy doors to the north lead out to the hallway, and cut off any sound from that direction. To the east, ornate windows let in the indirect sunlight, and a door leads into the royal gardens. An alcove contains a message area, and an archway leads into the Library Collections proper. Stairs lead up to the second level of the library.

Umbra 13, 228

Tyrel enters, his guards peeling away to position themselves on the exits while the prince moves towards the shelves of books. "Trevor, you said third case second shelf, correct?" He inquires as he moves into the collection.

Having been apparently engrossed in a weighty tome, the Lady Nimue is seated in one of the high-backed armchairs, one elbow propped on a curving arm and serving as a rest for her jaw upon the knuckles of that hand. Which is just as well, seeing as she momentarily drifts off and rouses herself with a start. Sighing deeply, the slender brunette arranges herself to a more properly upright position, stealing a glance toward her handmaid, seated opposite, to see if she was caught. The sour expression she's met with suggests yes. Most certainly.

"Sorry, Grete. It's just.. it's so terribly dull. Can I not go riding? Perhaps venture to the beach for a time..?" A stern shake of head elicits another, rather more irritated sigh and a displeased quirk of Nimue's lips, her green eyes lowering to the text settled in her lap once again. "Alright, alright.." If the new arrivals to the library have disturbed her, it isn't apparent.

Tyrel can be heard from the archives reading loudly,

"…and burly, in his arms did writhe;
upon the sand we paid love's tithe?"

The prince laughs, "Trevor, poetry has been murdered, send for a watchman and a priest to see to it's funeral. See that whoever was startled out of here is found and his notes are returned to him, have a care you do not read too many, my eyesight is already dimmed from the horror. Now then, second shelf, second shelf…ah, yes. Splendid."

Trevor moves forward through the archives and returns with a sheaf of paper covered in what can be assumed to be someone's poems and thoughts. He moves off to inquire with the guards who has been in and out of the library today.

"I did not know we were to be honored with a reading of poetry by the Young Highness himself," a soft, yet amused tone mutters from the stacks nearby Tyrel. In a few steps the Princess Roslin reveals herself, her maid just behind carrying a few large wrapped scrolls - map sized, by the look of them. She looks as regal today as she does every other, with a blood orange colored dress, pressed with flowered starbursts and vines and an underdress of warm yellow, the bodice and skirt decorated with beads of freshwater pearl. She wears, around her throat, a gold eight-pointed star, and a gold tiara sits atop her crown of read braids. She is smiling, contently, at the sight of her brother. "If I had known, why, I am sure I should have invited all of my friends to hear the glory of his regal tone." Still smirking a mischevious smile, Roslin approaches her brother and leans up to kiss him on the cheek before walking to the opening of the stacks, into the main room where the tables are. It is there she spies Nimue at the table with her lessons. "Pardon, my lady, if we have distrubed you. We Kilgours are a rowdy bunch, often times."

The sound of not exactly hushed 'inside voices' prompts a surprised blink from the seated noblewoman, and she glances in the vague direction of the archives, as does her elder handmaid. A not particularly ladylike snort of amusement escapes Nimue before she can help herself, forcing her to press her lips firmly together to keep from laughing aloud. After a long moment of struggle, she gently clears her throat and studiously lowers her green eyes to her reading, letting her dark hair fall forward to partially obscure her features.. though any onlooker would note the telltale quivering of her shoulders as she silently chuckles at the invisible man's words. The long-suffering chaperone opposite looks disgruntled.. or maybe her face is simply set that way.

Drawing a deep, hopefully calming breath as she is addressed, Nimue raises her gaze to regard the approaching Princess and offers her a pleasant smile in greeting. Seated as she is, there's no room for curtsey, but she politely - and gratefully, most likely - closes her book and sets it aside, inclining her head respectfully before offering a response. "Majesty.. no, not at all. In truth, I'd welcome any distraction, this afternoon." Well, honesty is a valuable trait.

Tyrel is still working the tome he has found free from it's brethern with care but he chuckles from his crouched position, "Such touching words stirred my very soul and sprung forth from my lips not to be denied…they very nearly had the same effect on my lunch but I mastered my emotions in time." The book comes free and he opens it carefully to check the contents before shutting it and standing, "I'm so glad my words were pleasing to the ears of the ladies of the court, despite the content. I do think it would be entertaining to hold a reading but perhaps instead of that drivel we could read something you've written?" He returns to the sitting area waving Nimue to be at her ease as he sees her stirring and setting aside her book. "What topic is it that you are studying, Lady Nimue, that you look for a distraction?"

"I am sure we may well oblige you, whether we intend to or not," Roslin says with the same content smile, turning to look back at her brother as he steps out to be seen by the ladies at the tables. Lady Nimue," She says, hearing the woman's name from her brother's lips. The princess returns the Forrester Lady's nod with one of her own - a respectful bow of the head. Only then does she turn and look back at Tyrel over her shoulder. "You wound me, Brother, for clearly you have mistaken me for our sister," Though her tone indicates that she is being playful, and is in no way wounded. "I have not the heart nor the patience to distill the emotions of my soul into a few phrases. Long, rambling tirades are far more my depth." She turns to await Lady Nimue's response to her brother, and once that is completed, adds a question of her own. "Do you perhaps have a poetic gift of your own, Lady Nimue? Perhaps you might be able to help my brother on his quest for a worthy verse where I have unhappily fallen short."

Relaxing a little, settling back more comfortably against the padding of her chair at the Prince's easy gesture, Nimue grimaces a touch and glances to her happily discarded book. "The Practical Uses of Herbology in Midwifery.. can you imagine? Hardly a topic I expect to have need for." A winning smile is cast toward her handmaid, before the young lady's attention returns fully to the Royal siblings. Watching their playful exchange, unperturbed, she clasps her hands loosely atop one knee, allowing herself a shy grin at their teasing words before forming a similarly amused answer for Roslin. "Alas, Princess, I admit my talents do not lie in verse. Truly, I am fortunate if I can rhyme one word with another, when pressed. I admire anyone with such a gift.." A brief pause, and she adds, glancing to Tyrel, "..well, perhaps not anyone. Those words read aloud were woeful even to my untrained ear."

Tyrel waves his hand dismissively, "Sister, I seem to recall coming upon you ever now and again penning such things as would entertain me greatly to read in front of all your friends…but that was late in the evening and I did come upon you unexpectedly." He considers the topic of Nimue's book for a few moments, "I would imagine being able to discuss a wide ranging variety of topics would be an essential skill for a noblewoman who always wishes to present herself in the best of lights, as for that particular topic I am generally comforted by having the knowledge to discuss the merits of armors and arms with my blacksmith so that I might guage his ability before walking into battle. I should think that a practical knowledge would lend a considerable amount of comfort to a woman when she is able to discuss matters with her midwife and realize she is skilled and knowledgeable in her craft."

Roslin grins at her brother. "Perhaps that explains why I now have so few friends to speak of," she teases back, though perhaps the joke is on her. She turns her attention back to the other woman, taking a few steps to stand a little closer, to keep her voice at a more reasonable level. "What my brother says is quite true - having some understand of such a subject may later in life be most useful. I must confess, however," She leans forward just a bit, as if to speak conspiritorially to the other woman. "I never was able to take to the healing arts myself," she admits. "I am sure already your knowledge on the topic surpasses mine greatly. Though, in all truth, your time even now is not being spent unwisely. For what is verse and poetry if not quite an art that any lady should be able to speak on just as elegantly as midwifery?"

Nimue bravely levels a flat stare upon the Prince, during and after his offering of opinion on her lessons. "Forgive me, Majesty.. I had not realised you were in cahoots with my dear handmaid." The expression relents to that quiet smile again swiftly enough, though. "In all honesty, herbalism is the only topic I ever had much talent for.. Grete is only trying to ensure I learn all aspects of it. Our only disagreement is that I should rather be improving upon those things I know less of. Ah well." A teasing glance is cast to the handmaid. "..now she would likely only have me attempt to write poetry, for my trouble." With a serene smile for the Prince, Nimue continues, "A discussion of the merits of armor sounds far more intriguing than one upon which powder is best to dull the wits of a birthing woman."

She looks to the Princess now, just barely suppressing another chuckle at the confidential tone and posture the young woman briefly assumes. "Well, perhaps we could haplessly attempt to tutor one another, Majesty.. though I expect your trying to bring graceful words to fall easily from my lips would take far longer than the task I would set myself. Herbalism, at the very least, means one can be out of doors. It's more of an excuse for a stroll than anything, in the beginning!"

Tyrel pages through the tome he has selected leaning forward to check the dates on the pages then tuns a few more, he looks up to smile at Numue's flat stare. "My wife has recently become pregnant, Lady Nimue, and it is on that instant that a young nobleman switches sides from being against handmaids and all they stand for, to being fully in league and supportive of their efforts. On the birth of their first daughter, I am told, a nobleman will often raise a shrine to the patron of handmaids. I believe noblewomen experience much the same but I've always suspected handmaids and noble girls of being more in league than either is willing to admit." He looks back to his pages reading a few lines then turning back a page. "And I imagine there are things that you could be doing that impressing two members of the royal family with your poise."

Tyrel coughs, "Things you could be doing that would please your made less than impress members of the royal family." He gestures for one of his guards to bring him a drink, "Dry and dusty subject this…" He says gesturing to the tome, "…it's left me parched."

"Tsk, Brother," Roslin teases. "I am sure handmaidens apprecaite such shrines after the birth of boys rather than girls. I may have been young, but I remember that you oft gave some of ours quite a time of it, with your antics. Logen and Mikhail as well. Fathers may fear daughters, but I believe in my heart that handmaidens fear sons." She nods once more, her hands coming to rest gently in front of her in a delicate yet unassuming pose. "I think you may have struck upon an idea there, Lady Nimue. A rather clever one. Surely your handmaiden should not object to such expeditions, if you might assist in passing such knowledge on to me? I cannot tell an herb from a weed, alas, and yet with such walks as you have outlined, perhaps I may not be entirely useless all my life in that area of study."

"Congratulations, Your Majesty." The Forrester's warmth on the matter seems perfectly genuine, despite her protestations about the tedium of midwifery and she casts Tyrel a pleased curve of her lips in response to the news. "Though, I trust you do not plan to read your beloved verses such as before, to smooth the path laid before her?" A flicker of mischief is apparent in her green eyes only fleetingly before she moves on, a soft laugh escaping her as the Prince speaks such high praise of handmaids. Unbelievably, Grete almost cracks a smile.. and it widens a touch further as Rosline speaks her piece on the matter, though her eyes remain downward cast, leaving the nobility to their chit-chat.

"The majority of my best ideas, Majesty, you will find arise from the desire to be doing something outwith that which is expected of me." Nimue grins slightly up at the Princess. The unusual lacing of her Southern accent is not unpleasant, even if her manners may be a smidgen coarse in the presence of royalty. But she makes no pretense - she is what she is, and proud of it, by the looks of things. "I would gladly offer you assistance in your studies, Princess, if you so desire. And should I fail you badly enough, you may punish me with poetry to your heart's content."

Tyrel chuckles, "Ah, you two should get along famously." He glances over at the map sized scrolls, "Would one of those happen to be over Laniver and current, or reasonably so?"

"Perhaps," Roslin says in response to her brother. "Though if you had asked what they had been for, I had planned to tell you they were all maps of the citadel, to begin planning for the gardens. It would not have been a lie-" she objects, before he can scold her. "Some of them are. But it sounds as though you intend to relieve me of one of them, so I have little desire to tease you." Roslin nods to her maid, who shuffles through the rolls in her arms before finally producing one and offering it over to the prince with her head bowed low. The Princess turns back to Nimue again. "You need not explain to me, my dear lady. My father gave into my desires to study finance and trade for a year in Lakeshire. Not quite the common interest of courtly women, but a venture that is ladylike enough. But then, sometimes fathers are too soft where their daughters are concerned - a trait that I have come to apprecaite."

Rising smoothly to a stand, Nimue sweeps back her hair over one shoulder and gathers up her book, hugging it lightly to her chest. She waits politely as the siblings converse, before nodding in assent to Roslin's observation. "They can be, indeed.. though I imagine the daughter of a King has greater burdens of expectation placed upon her than I myself could ever bear. I expect my father would have laughed heartily, had I ever made such a request of him.. and then sent me to the stables to be shown again the best method of poulticing the hoof of a lame mount." She really does come from a different little world, doesn't she? Somehow sitting on the fence between nobility and commonfolk, and oddly enough seeming quite content there. Dipping a careful curtsey, given her wrapped arms, the young lady glances shyly between the pair as her handmaid likewise heaves to her feet. "It has been a genuine pleasure to make your acquaintance, Princess. Should you truly wish to take an entirely educational walk with me, before the cold draws in too far, I would be honoured, and grateful of the company. For the moment, however, I fear I must excuse myself.."

Tyrel rises and sets his books down as Nimue rises and bows slightly to her as she makes ready to depart then settles back down flipping through the book scanning through the passages. He leaves the two women to their conversation.

Roslin bows her head once more, respectfully, to Nimue. "Of course, My Lady. If it please you I shall call upon you sometime in the next few days to arrange it, as I think I should enjoy nothing better." She smiles warmly to the girl. "Indeed, I shall look quite forward to it. Pleasant evening to you, Lady Nimue."

Tyrel keeps a sharp eye to make sure Roslin does not escap with /all/ the remaining maps.

The brunette seems to have cheered considerably from her earlier mood. There's nothing like pleasant conversation with royalty to keep one's handmaid from nagging. With a last soft curve of her lips and murmured, "Majesties.." Nimue gracefully strides away from the armchairs, her gait surprisingly swift and rangy, considering her diminuitive stature. The same cannot be said of Grete, who hurries at an odd waddle to keep pace with her mistress.

Tyrel spreads out roughly draw and outdated map with the stains of spilled wine and wonders idly if Roslin had bought this dog-earred atrocity especially to give to him or if something this bad was really in the library.

Roslin nods as the woman leaves, keeping her body facing the woman respectfully until she's left. Once Nimue and her maid are gone, however, Roslin looks over to her brother and eyes him sharply, curiously, cheekily. "Is there something that concerns you about my appearance, brother dearest?" Roslin asks mischeviously, turning to face him. "Or are you concerned that I shall make off with your coin purse?" She walks over to him and where the map is spread out, looking over his shoulder. "May I inquire as to what you are thinking at this moment?" She asks, her tone a bit more serious.

Tyrel smiles, "The women of our family are far too pretty, I've always been of that opinion so I was considering whether I could find some gift that would make you look haggard that you would feel obligated to wear because of the sentimental nature of the gift." He chuckles, "Though of more importance in my thoughts, I am trying to find as many references as I can to how well or poorly supply lines have held up in the positions we are now. It has been some time since battle lines were draw this way."

"I am sure your last gift, while not making me appear haggared, would be enough to cause some eyebrows to raise. I do not think it is well known by the people that their Princess walks with a blade tucked in her skirts at all time." The Princess responds, moving around the table to examine the map from the far side. She thinks for a moment, her face no longer cheeky, but pensive. "While I was in Lakeshire, there is something that I learned that has affected me strongly - strong roads, well-mantained and protected, can cause an economic boom through trade for any city or country." She lifts her eyes to her brother with a bit of a frown. "It had been my intention, when times were more stable, to speak with father about improving the conditions of ours. A kingsroad, a true highway - that would be just the thing. Alas, the terrain of our country never made such clean, clear, and quick roads terribly easy to build or maintain."

Tyrel smiles, "It is among the many duties of a brother to ensure that no-one knows what a sister keeps under her skirts. So unless I fail you entirely, the secret of my gift is safe." He nods though as she indicates her desire for a road, "There are some additional complexities beyond terrain. The direction in which we build will cause us to appear to favor some and disfavor others, but if you have some insight into where a road would be most effective I would be interested to hear it as I'm sure father would as it would come from a mind with little bias as to which directions to go."

Roslin bows her head to Tyrel, smirking at his antics before turning her attention back to the map. She chews softly on her lower lip as she considers the spread before her. "No doubt you are right. Political concerns. In an ideal scenario, we might find a way to fund roads between the largest city of each duchy, with the ports at Weston, Trueborn Keep, and Castle Greenshire. But I wonder if it is feasible." She smiles and shakes her head. "I confess, the construction of roadways is something I have little knowledge of. But what would happen would be that Lakeshire would become the center of everything - even more than it already is. Not necessarily bad, mind you, but a fact all the same. Noen of these facts assist you, however, in your desire for supply routes. Are you thinking of crossing the border at the pass on the eastern border of Weston?"

Tyrel says, "What I'm thinking is what points we absolutely must capture before winter settles in to prevent our supply lines from suffering. Rivers that we are now using will freeze and mountain passes will become unpassable." He considers, "That is the other concern with roadways…your army can reach your border quickly but your enemy can reach your heart just as quickly."

"Capture?" Rosln asks, looking up at her brother with raised brows. "Do you mean to march into Laniveer before the winter, and hold position there until the fighting season begins again?" She seems surprised - their previous conversation had been to begin the fighting anew in the spring. None the less, Roslin seems to move quite comfortably with this new information, moving to tap her finger at a port city along the eastern side of Laniveer, just by the border. "This is the port we currently hold," she says thoughtfully. "If we even move our men here, more than just a garrison, they would be able to protect the pass - perhaps long enough for troops from Weston to move into the country. From there, we could take a few southern keeps, have our men remain there for the winter. If what they say about the Moniwid is true, the Laniveer fleet may be in a worse state than ours, allowing us to fairly safely resupply by sea to the port."

Tyrel says, "Winter passage at sea is far from safe, and yes, I am looking for those areas that would be better to take now than to allow them the entire winter to reinforce and resupply. I do not think I will find one, but it is wiser to look. There are also subtler tactics we can employ, even in the cold months, to put pressure on those keeps we will need to lay seige to."

"It is comparatively easier than marching through one of these mountain passes under feet of snow," Roslin points out cheekily. "Would Jadda be willing to assist in supplying our men? It may not be the most direct route, but rather than supply them ourselves, we could pay to have them supplied." She chews once more on her lower lip, looking down at the map. "I do not like the idea much of putting our men at the whim of another realm, and yet the Laniveer invaded Jadda. They too are are at war." She lifts her eyes again, raising her brows. "Whatever can you mean, brother? What tactics is it you refer to?"

Tyrel says, "Sabatuers and the like. The darkness of winter allows many things to be done that would be difficult to accomplish in the light of day. Bridges can be collapsed or frozen rivers crossed, the rules of the field change as the weather does."

Roslin listens to her brother, looking down at the map once again. "The Rangers are no doubt eager to enter the fight. It will take select men to be able to enter the country and move fairly undetected, to live among our enemies and not to arouse suspicion. Still … we could focus such attentions on the southern keeps. Draw their attention there - when bridges drop and roads fail along the border, the Stewarts will likely be eager to stand up their defenses again before spring, when they are likely to expect our force to march through the pass or enter through Cold Harbor if we still hold it. I still believe that port is our key but … what is we were to march North from there, once the season fell, and look to Jadda and our sabatuers to tie up their forces in the South? Rather than fight our way up the entire country, we could cut off the southern keeps from Nothern reinforcements, and move quickly into more prime targets." She looks curiously to her brother, her face searching for his opinion on her words.

Tyrel nods, "All valid points, but of equal value if we can find the right men then we can move about causing destruction that will require a greater number of guardians to prevent. By forcing the enemy to increase garrisons they deplete their reserves all the more quickly and rather than having fresh well rested soldiers come the spring they have men tired and far from home. The Sutherland men come to mind as they have a reason to wish to extract vengence and are agile on thier light horses and afoot, but that is not the concern of the moment. For the moment I must be certain that I have not left a keep or tower that will harry our troops when they should be resting."

Roslin nods once more, standing back from teh map for a moment. "Perhaps the best way then is to know how our enemies currently stand along such points as these." She looks sheepishly to her brother. "In the last year I may have made some aquaitences whom have men - skilled rangers - who are capable of finding the answers to such questions." She glances up at her brother to see his response. "I do not know yet if they might oblige, but if you would see them to such a task, I shall do what is in my power to make is so."

Tyrel glances over at Roslin, "Skilled rangers, are they?" He flicks his eyes to the handmaid then back to Roslin, "And while meeting these skilled rangers and discussing the intrigues they are capable of accomplishing, where was your maid?"

"By my side," Roslin says, unafraid. The maid, sitting against the wall, seems suddenly much more interested in a book she has picked up off the shelf. "Do not misunderstand me, Tyrel - I did not meet with men of untoward or base nature myself. I would never, you know me far better than that. But these men, as I understand, are sworn to a noble family, among which is one I would call friend, and whose word and work I trust to be discrete. That is all." She speaks with the strength of conviction, with her head high.

Tyrel considers for a few moments then says, "Be less absolute in your statements, there may be times when men of untoward or base nature must be dealt with and it cannot always be with sword, lance or arrow. For now, we will leave such inquiries to those channels of information that the council has established, I do not doubt your capabilities but these men are unknown to me, as they should be, but their information is unproven and that is not something I would wish to risk strategy on when more proven methods are available."

"Very well," Roslin says, obedient to his advice and his decision. "Though a fair word of warning - you may find the channels that the council currently posesses to be somewhat lacking. I do not say this to press you toward what I have suggested, but simply to inform you of what my eyes have seen. Father has seen fit to allow me access to the incomming intelligence reports from Laniveer and they have been … inadequate. A single ranger is all there has been thus far to provide us with information about an oncomming seige." She bows her head to him slightly in a gesture of respect when she is finished speaking.

Tyrel puts his hand on his forehead for a moment rubbing his temples, "Far too pretty, and far too intelligent." He looks over at her for a few moments, "It was all those hours of sleep you missed while we were creeping about the castle at night, wasn't it? That's what caused you to grow up like this.

Roslin stands up straighter, reaching out to slowly roll up the stained map. "Whatever do you mean, dear brother?" She asks, in a tone he will no doubt know as familiar - seemingly serious, but quite cheeky too. "If I had to place a wager, I would say that it has little to do with the loss of sleep and everything to do with the way you used to leap at me from doorways and dark corners shouting, 'Red Caps! Red Caps! Defend yourself!'" She smirks, handing the map over to her maid. "But then, I was the only one who ever played that game with you. So perhaps it is simply that I am made a little differently. Perhaps that is why your hair is so fair, and mine is a mess of flames."

Tyrel tsks, "I did not always shout Red Caps…I shouted lots of things, and you weren't the only one who played, you were just the one that played best." He leans back in his chair with his book, "Do bring me whatever information it is that you gather, though you are not to put yourself at risk doing so…and I think your hair is an elegant coif of flames."

As Roslin walks past her brother, she leans down to kiss his cheek again in a fond gesture. "And you are far too charming for your own good - a trait you inherited from Father in spades." She smiles to him for a moment. "It lightens the heart so much to have you home," She says, in a lower tone of confidence. A slender hand touches his shoudler once in an almost patting motion before she nods to her maid and makes her way off out of the library, leaving Tyrel to his studies of poorly written poetry.

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