Umbra 32, 228: Council Meeting - Nimue's Ransom and Troop Deployment

Caedmon hosts the Council Meeting to discuss the ransom of Nimue and troop deployment.

Council Meeting - Nimue's Ransom and Troop Deployment
Summary: Caedmon hosts the Council Meeting to discuss the ransom of Nimue and troop deployment.
OOC Date: November 6th, 2013 (OOC)
Related: None
Caedmon Tyrel Wenna Aldren Laine Robben 
Council Chambers
The council chambers are much like the rest of the castle. Opulent tapestries line the walls as gray marble covers the floor. The ceiling is vaulted, with a mosaic painted of the Battle of Skingaard. The north wall of the room is almost entirely made of glass, looking across the sea beyond. In the center of the room is a large table, with chairs lining each side, and a large chair, similiar to a throne, at the head.
Umbra 32, 228

Tyrel takes his place at the council table. Several small slate squares with carefully written notations wait beside his chair on a small rack should he need or wish to review or reference them. He lifts his cup to his lips taking a drink of the weak cider then sets it down as he waits.

Caedmon nods when the last of the participants arrives. "Lords and ladies, I do not wish to prolong this more than necessary, because an urgent matter has come to my attention." He signals to an assistant who begins to circulate through the room, delivering a sheet of paper to each person. "I have shared this matter with the king, who is attending to another matter at the moment, and with the crown prince." He nods to Tyrel. "I know their reactions to the topic already. I wish to hear from you. Please take a moment. to read the material that my clerk has given to you." He pauses so that everyone can read the paper.

Making his way into the room, seating himself a bit thoughtfully. He keeps silent for now, just looking between the others. Keeping silent as he does, it would seem.

Laine is only here because he was asked to be here. That said he stands quietly in the corner, waiting until he will be called to participate. Until then it is his fervent wish that people forget his presence. Of course Laine's life is never quite that easy, the world did give him Allyn as a brother after all.

Tyrel turns to review his rack of slates and selects one setting it on the table before him. He then steeples his fingers as he waits for those who did not already receive the message read it.

Aldren is only here for his own reasons and glances at the sheet. He does not read it though and simply rolls his eyes. He has, in fact, allready seen it as he was present when it arrived. He makes no comment on the matter though, how ever he does turn to look at the Captain for his reaction to another abduction.

Robben raises an eyebrow as he reads that note, frowning momentarily. He doesn't say anything yet, looking from Caedmon to Tyrel, to the man in the corner. Shaking his head after a few moments, as he waits to hear something more.

Seated near the Voice is Wenna she is dressed in a plain charcoal grey wool gown and her long hair has been bound up underneath a white linen biggens. She seated there quietly listening and analyzing. On occasion she takes a sip of her tea that smells like willow bark. Her moss green eyes rest on each person who has been speaking thus far.

Tyrel looks along the table over his fingertips, "Gentlemen, I appreciate your wanting to take a measured moment of thought before replying, but this borders on timidness. Have you no reaction or opinion you wish to offer?"

Laine doesn't know quite how the whole council works and it is his fervant hope to never attend enough meetings to actually learn how it works. He is here to offer any assistance he can in resolving the situation and any clarification regarding the initial kidnapping. Since he's not part of the council he doesn't believe it is his place to speak without being asked.

"First of all I will say this, the girl needs to be found. I do not think if they are taking part of her that she will last long and there is not guarantee they will give her to us alive." Wenna says after a few more moments. "By the way the tissue was around the site of the amputation I can conclude she was alive when it was taken. Is she still in the city or is she in the surrounding woods? Captain if you would please tells us of all that you know of her disappearance it would be appreciated?"

Caedmon reaches for his own cup of tea and sips from it while he watches the others, waiting for their reactions. When they lift their eyes from the sheet of paper, he nods. "Your highness, you already know my position. We should find and rescue the lady, and bring this band of criminals to swift and decisive justice, for her sake, and for all of our women who might become their next victim." He looks for a moment at Wenna. Then he looks to Laine after Wenna speaks. "That is why I asked you to come here, captain. You are responsible for protecting the city. If these criminals are within its walls, your city is not safe."

Aldren looks to the prince "Oh, I have an opinion. Scout the pickup man, find the whole lot of them and send them to that masked fucker I have been hearin' of." He says easily, his chin held high. Though, he adds, "Not really for me to say. Sounds more a job for the royal justicar, or perhaps the Captain if it happened out side the city. And in fact where did it happen? Our these walls not safe here in the castle?" Now he is accusatory towards the voice. "I daresay if it indeed happened in the castle, well. I am not finding it to be such healthy place for me and mine own." He listens to the others after he is done and looks to the Captain again, "You most likely could sit." He offers.

"I think…" Robben's words are spoken a bit quietly, as he glances between the people present. "That having all the facts we have so far, and not just the note, would help those of us that hasn't been a part of the entire investigation so far." A brief pause, as he looks around the room, once more.

Caedmon's eyes shift from person to person when each speaks. He finally answers, "Count Aldren, the castle is safe. This happened in the city, in the public gardens. Captain Rhenfeld has been overseeing the investigation. We do not know where the criminals are hiding, but I have asked the Master of Spies to devote some resources to determining that. I suspect that the captain will have other resources at his disposal that might be helpful." Then he nods to Wanna, and he adds, "The royal healer is correct. We should find the lady as quickly as possible. I strongly doubt that they will stop at a finger."

Tyrel looks from one to the other, "I agree, the Lady must be found with all speed and those who have taken her brought to justice. We have a large number of military forces in the area including several contingents of rangers." He looks to the slate before him, "I propose we put these men to use flushing the criminals from hiding. These criminals have grown too bold between the carinival folk and now this. Those foot soldiers that we have can move through the city, those rangers can move through the forest. I would see every rat's nest kicked open and remind them of their place."

Tyrel adds, "And I do not wish them to think that it is some ridiculous figure in a mask they ought to fear, I wish them to realize that it is the bright and shining crown and the knights and soldiers that support it that will become their nightmare if they cross the line."

Laine steps forward, since he was asked to report. He bows to those gathered, "My Lords, My Lady, Young Majesty… from what people have found, the Lady was taken from the public gardens, likely unconscious. She was taken for a short time to a run down house and held. A small portion of fabric was snagged on a nail there. It was believed she was loaded into a carriage, possibly with a hidden compartment as the guards at the gates were alerted the moment her disappearance was known. We believe she is outside the city walls at this time, though my people were unable to track far. Actually upon leaving the garden the group began hiding their trail. We were lucky to find the scrap of fabric. It is possible that it was a ruse, I have taken that into account, but my firm belief is that they have left the city at this time. They are very good at covering their tracks. I did try tracking them outside the city walls, but I lost the trail. None of my people were able to go much further than my own attempt." He tries not to drop his head at the Prince's words, but he does see it as his failing. "Any assistance offered in making the inhabitants of the city feel more safe within their homes is welcome."

"Question is, do we want the Lady back alive. If we make too much noise, they will probably kill her, if they haven't done so already." Robben speaks a bit thoughtfully, before he adds, "I mean, they could have killed her, or worse, and then either taken the… gift they mentioned from her before killing her, or even taken it from somebody else."

Aldren nods to the voice begrudgingly as visions of tiger dance in his head. "Very well." Is all he says though, and kindly at that. He shakes his head approvingly at the general opinion to find her as quick as possible and just plain not to negotiate with the terror causing maniacs at large. Tyrel's explaination of troops gets his attention now and says, "That is well put."

Now the captain has come forth and tells of what he knows. The count raises a brow as he takes in his account. "Hymm, is a martial enforcement so necessary? Does that incite the feelings of safety?" He says questioningly. Robben speaks up now and Aldren listens but he is antsy and is trying to move on to something else it would seem as he is leaning forwards on his seat. Foot tapping.

"The captain is quite good at his work," Caedmon assures the nobles in the room. "He also might be right. If we show too much force, we might frighten this band, and they might choose to kill their hostage and flee. I urge that we should involve the rangers to find them as quickly as possible, and then rescue the lady."

"My suggestion is that you use the rangers as The Voice has said. I know not of tactics or other things, but I do know that troops in the city will cause loose tongues." Wenna interjects. "I examined the body of her guard, a bandit and of her handmaiden. The handmaiden had died when she hit her head on stone. Most likely she was pushed or she fell. The guard died of a crossbow bolt. The bolt had been coated with Cassava roots and other fungi, the odor is almost almond like."

Tyrel considers for a few moments, "I suspect they are more likely to keep her alive to negotiate for their own lives once cornered than they are to release her safely upon recieving coin. These are not men of honor we deal with, but craven cowards that prey upon the weakness and terror of a woman." He then looks to Aldren and Laine, "To my mind this is not a matter of reassuring the commoners of their safety, this is a matter of educating the criminals of their exposure and the consequences. I would set the rangers to begin away from the city and draw inward while the foot start from the center and work out. Let them panic and flee and make it known that there is a bounty of one thousand gold coins for their heads but if the Lady comes to further harm that bounty will increase until they are found." He picks up his cup and drinks, "But it may be I have been thinking too long in terms of war and seige to have clear sight on this. The rangers and foot are available to deploy as you see fit."

Aldren listens to all some more and when they are finished he takes a long breath. "Our prince seems to have the right of it. And if there is no current bounty, surely one should be set." He pauses to sip some wine that must be present, half the reason he may be here. Now he begins to speak of the other half. "But all this talk of troops and movements leads us to the reason for my presence. If we may move on I have an issue that I would like to discuss."

Laine looks as if he might say more, but then steps back with a nod to Tyrel. He is no longer attatched to the Rangers and so their deployment will not fall to him. "If I can be of any further assistance do not hesitate to call upon me." Since it seems things will be moving along, Laine steps even further back, "If you wish, I can leave now."

"Also fear could turn on the foot and we could have a riot." Wenna points out. "I know healing but because of that I have seen people at their worse. Fear may cause us more issue, I am not saying ya or nay, but I am just warning for caution. I do think that the bounty would be wise." She takes a deep breath. "Captain we would have your advice and hear your thoughts about this idea including the bounty. You know the city better than any of us."

Caedmon looks to Aldren and raises his hand. "Your highness, we are at a kind of war with these criminals," he says, directing his words to Tyrel. "Pressing this enemy from both sides, as you have suggested, and offering a bounty for their capture, might serve our purpose well. I think that all of us agree to that." He looks to Wenna for a moment when she echoes his sentiment. He lowers his hands from the table where they were clasped, and into his lap while he turns to Laine. "Do not deprive us of the insights that we need, captain. Please, speak from your experience."

Robben's eyes narrows as he listens now. "And I guess you would ride your horse over the grand table when it is readied for a grand feast as well?" Shaking his head a little bit as he adds, "Like you say, these are no men of honor." Raising his voice a bit more, as he looks between the others. "These are human predators, and like every other predator, if they are cornered, they will react as such. Which means they will be far more likely to kill the Lady just to avoid slowing them down in their flight." A brief pause, before he adds, "Unless, as I said, they have done so already, and are doing all of this to try getting some coin just like that." A brief pause, before he adds, "And as for the note, the one thing I truly believe from the writing would be that they will not hesitate to end her life." Shaking his head at Caedmon, he shrugs a little, "If we send in the foot, who will be responsible for letting Count Forrester know the Lady died due to our incompetence. Use whatever forces we can use that knows how to move silently for something like this. That would be my reasoning."

Tyrel nods, "Very well then, use the rangers to approach silently and secure the Lady's safety or confirm that her safety can no longer be secured. Keep the foot in reserve should these cowards need to be flushed from hiding once that is done…or post them as a second ring to patrol around the city should they manage to slip past the rangers. When this is over, however it should end, I wish those who consider such misdeeds to clearly understand the force that can be brought to bear."

Laine ducks his head, though his voice can be heard even if he meets no one's eyes as he speaks, "I had some luck recently with rescuing those being held hostage, using archers and scouts. It is true, going straight at them would be a disadvantage, especially since at least one of their number is skilled in the arts of surprise attacks. The Lady's first guard to fall was felled ambush style, likely dead before he even knew what was going on or that his charge was under attack." He pauses a moment, "As for the City, the people are scared, but they would be even without such attacks as Mobrin is at war. Seeing increased guard within the walls of the City will put many at ease, but it is a fine line. If the people who are not doing anything wrong, feel their freedom too encroached upon they may revolt. Increased presence is a good idea, but pushing too much is not. It must be all done in such a way that the law abiding citizens are not made to fear their own government as much, or more than the criminal element."

Aldren breathes deeper when the voice gives him the hand and he takes to more drink. He looks to the table as they dig deeper into the topic. When his cup is emptied, he signals for more. He continues to listen while he sips away and here or there a look is given to his sister.

"I already have directed the Master of Spies to reploy rangers to find these ruffians," Caedmon explains. "Adding soldiers temporarily to the Watch might help." He looks to Laine and offers, "We could direct those soldiers to take orders from you, captain, during this situation." Then he turns to Tyrel, and adds, "Although I serve as the king's voice, highness, I yield to you as crown prince to give the final word on how we should conduct this business. If you are ready to issue orders now, then I urge you to do so. If you need time to consider, then I urge you to take it, and while you do that, we could hear about the other cooncern that Count Aldren wishes to bring to the table."

Tyrel says, "The rangers will be deployed quietly, the foot will bolster the guard to make a more obvious presence and as more information is available it will be addressed. I will not put the Lady at risk to make my point, there is time for that after." He turns his attention to Aldren, "What is this other matter then?"

Robben lets out a bit of a breath as he listens now, expression unreadable as he looks to Aldren. A brief glance around the room, then to the ceiling, and then back to the man now.

Aldren sits up and sets his cup down. "I have heard speak of the troops being sent home. Am I to tell them to turn around and march right back home? Will we not strengthen the borders or something? I had an arrangement with the king. Some seven hudred or so mounted cavalary were to be sent to the County. I have received no word. I understand that a majority were to come from Sutherland. While i realize they have their own troubles now it only reminds me of mine own and what I am sworn to protect. It is bad enough I have lost my best naval commander in the form of my cousin. And currently weakened by one thousand men. I implore you, make some decision. I am sure it can be arranged for a small number, the best we have, to remain here if they could be housed somewhere." He stops and instead of saying more has another drink, the wine momentairly sours his face and he sets it back down.

Tyrel raises an eyebrow then turns to collect three more of the slates from the rack setting them on the table. Carved into the slate is a small map with chalk dots on it. "You have heard a partial truth." Tyrel says, "Men are being sent home, however, they are being sent home along routes that are advantageous to us and will have duties to complete along the way." He takes a moment to review the outposts that are going to be inspected and manned and sketches out the rotation of soldiers in those posts. "Further we will be fortifying these forward positions and strengthening these supply lines." He indicates several lines on the carved map. "To bolster our defenses against naval incursion men have been posted at outposts near these locations. So that we might field a better trained force come spring a number of veteran soldiers and knights have been sent to more remote outposts to ensure that the green soldiers there are drilled throughout the winter months." The horsemen and soldiers mentioned in the agreement are addressed confirming Aldren's understanding of how that was to me met. "The speed at which we strike come spring will be largely dependent on the negotiations with the Jadda and the productivity of our naval yards, but we will be striking."

Caedmon nods slowly when Aldren mentions the promised troops. "Your highness, they were reinforcements to help the count with defending his borders. In exchange for the archers that came from Greenshire, his majesty agreed to send a contingent of infantry, cavalry, and pike-men."

Wenna's green eyes come to rest on the men and she is quiet for the time being as she listens her hand are under the table and most likely folded on her lap. She looks between her brother and the prince. The expression on her face is one of patience.

The Count leans over and examines the map. "I see." He says as the posistions are pointed out. Leaning back he takes a sip of wine and says, "And what of the mounted soldiers. Has no one spoken with Ronan since he has stepped in?" He looks around as he asks of the new Duke. "Is he aware of the arrangement? In my opinion they should have been deployed by now. Look what Moniwad pulled on the Lanniveers. Should Jadda decide to attempt something like that my coast is all too close for my liking." His last sentence is thick with disdain and he uses some wine to wash it from his mouth, a hard line forming on his brow.

He nods to the voice now as he clairifys a bit. "Yes, as I said. My borders are at risk. Though I confess not to know what the Jaddan navy consists of nor of Lord Eoins intentions at sea."

Tyrel identifies those troops that have been committed to move to the Count's borders and turns to draw two more slates from the rack that display the names of the knights of note that march with each host. There are more freshly spurred knights than the Count might wish, but not so many as to be insulting or fail to meet the arrangement. "As for additional horse, they would be of minimal use during the winter months and troublesome to feed and stable. As spring nears the troops will be redeployed to take advantage of the season. The King has just departed to make arrangement so that Jadda will not trouble your border, but as good fences make good neighbors the pikemen we've sent will suffice to defeat any mounted force that could be landed by ship."

"I'm sure my father's navy will manage to protect any force from Jadda before they could land any forces, unless they brave the far open sea," Robben replies, a bit quietly. Another brief pause, before he adds, "But it never hurts to be sure."

Aldren leans over checking the new markings. "Very well." He listens as he speaks of the kding visiting them and he frowns. "Well, we shall see." He pauses before he says, "So I will not receive any horse?" He sounds incredulous. "That what was the basis of the agreement." He shakes his head and empties his wine cup. He listens now to Robben and nods his way. "I do not doubt the man. We have trouble with priates oft enough and with my Couisin now raised up to serve the king I fear my waters are not so safe anymore."

"Brother we do not have the hay in Greenshire to support the extra horses not including all the livestock. Come summer or spring they will be needed." Wenna points out in a gentle manner to her twin. "If they come from the sea, we will need the archers and footmen. Yes I am aware I do not know anything about warfare but I do know about farming and stewardship." She then looks to Robben. "Lord Sir Robben that might be the case but your father will be happy not to be spread so thin after the last battle."

Tyrel points to the slate with the knight's names, "You will receive horse, as agreed. The knights and their compliment immediately and more as you are able to support them. The knights and their attendants will see that your facilities and men are made ready so that when more arrive you are not overburdened or are confronted with horses suffering lameness, malnutrition or fatigue."

Aldren nods, seeming satisfied. "That sounds well." He seems relieved with the words and stands abruptly. "Then if you will excuse me I have a family matter that has been much delayed." If their are no objections he bows and swiftly leaves the room.

From where he is seated Caedmon speaks. "Is there any other business to bring before the council?"

"Mine can wait until next week Voice." Wenna says to him formally.

Tyrel looks to Caedmon and the others, "Have a good evening, all, and I look forward to hearing positive reports on the search for the Lady. There will be more detailed briefings on those troop movements that affect your lands and your men over the upcoming weks. Light of the Eight illuminate your paths." He then rises, and moves to leave.

"Nothing," Robben replies to Caedmon's question, getting to his feet and leaving the room, steps a bit quick for the moment.

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