Thedor 44, 229: The Vigil

The Vigil
Summary: Sir Ronan Crawford prepares himself, makes confession, and then stands his vigil at the Temple of Trueborn on the night before he is to wed. Priestess Luna comes by near dawn to check on the Duke.
OOC Date: 13/02/2014 (OOC)
Related: Ronan-Roslin Sutherland wedding logs.
Ronan Kierne Luna 
Temple of Trueborn, Sutherland
This spacious building has been erected in the honor of the Eight. A round rotunda in form with a domed roof, it has eight large arched doorways spaced all the way around to admit worshipers. An alcove alter is set between each archway with a statue of each God or Goddess with an offering table, candles, and kneeling pads on the stone floor. Slim staircases allow access to the upper story balcony where eight intricately pieced stained glass rose windows pay homage to the Gods and Goddesses. The light that passes down through the rose windows in the day time bathes the stone flooring below in many colors. At all other hours filigree ironwork sconces with beeswax candles illuminate the interior.

This is an elegant temple, lavish with carved stone, gilt work, colored mosaics, parqueted stone patterns in the floor, and handsome woodwork pews capable of seating many people. A lectern stands in the center of the floor for sermons or weddings, surrounded by many circles of pews with eight slender aisles coming to the center. A discreet, smaller door is tucked beneath each of the staircases to allow access for the Priesthood to other parts of the temple on each side. Eight Sutherland knights are posted at all times to keep the temple and worshipers safe from harm or theft.

Thedor 44, 229.

The rumors are true, should anyone come to the temple that night. There are twice as many knights as usual standing watch, to witness and protect and with Kierne among them. Ronan arrived two hours before dusk to give his confession to the elder Priest of the temple and for the Acolytes to remove his garments and bathe him, blessing the water and making a ritual of the cleansing. This was done in another part of the temple and when completed, the Duke was garbed in a plain white tunic down to his knees. This time there is no red robe draped over to show his readiness to take wounds and to bleed for his duty, for this vigil is to prepare him to wed, not his knighting ceremony nor on the eve of a great battle.

All of the Rioga's armour, weapons, and his spurs have been cleaned and polished to utmost perfection (by Kierne, no doubt). These items have been laid out and scattered among the eight altars to the Gods in the hope they will be blessed, along with piles of offerings that will remain after; Spring flowers, platters of food, a stack of golden coins, many small beautiful items made by skilled craftsman, and the tusks of the great boar Ronan had from the hunt in Darfield that had gored him.

From dusk until dawn Ronan is to fast and observe prayers. As the predawn hour now approaches, the Duke kneels on the stone floor upon a small rug, his dark head bowed to Alasair. To all of the Gods and Goddesses he has prayed this night, and some more than once.

All the clergy were made aware of the upcoming vigil, causing schedules to be slightly rearranged to make certain there were more priests than priestesses available in the event the Duke's entourage also sought confession or guidance. Throughout the night, acolytes and full-fledged clergy members worked side by side to ready the Temple for the next day's wedding. Several hours before dawn, the main room has been fully transformed.

Luna steps into the room, appearing fresh as a daisy. The scent of tiger lily follows her as she stops to quietly greet those who have come to accompany their liege. When she reaches Kierne, she stops to ask in muted tones, "His body seems well enough, but how does he fare?"

Kierne turns and smiles, then bows to Luna, "I believe he fares very well, Priestess. He has been quiet, but in good spirits, even to laughing and joking somewhat." The Rioga's squire looks happy himself, dressed in House Kincaide colors of black and silver. Though today he will likely be dressed in white with blue for House Crawford at the wedding. The youth keeps his tenor low, "He acts well healed from his wounds though I know surely it's too soon for him to be wholly mended inside. It will be a very fine day today, don't you think?" Kierne is a little bit excited.

Ronan himself sits still, eyes closed but he is not sleeping for sometimes his lips move very faintly with his prayer thoughts. The soft voices rouse him and his eyes open to look up at Alasair's statue, candles flickering in the darkness to hold it at bay until the dawn.

Luna nods to the boy's words, her gaze upon the man in question as she speaks with his squire. "He is well enough to go through the ceremony, which is the most important issue. Hopefully, he is well enough to complete the marriage in the eyes of the Eight and the law this night or soon thereafter." It is said clinically, a bit on the shrewd side. "It would not do for there to be any question of the marriage's validity."

Kierne's face lights up, a boy's blush in scarlet, "Oh, I think … eh, knowing the Duke … even if he has to go slow, there won't be any question of …" Ehem. The young Kincaid clears his throat, "I think it's safe to say that he's eager to have his bride." He tries to smile, obviously not a very experienced young man in such matters, yet. "I hardly think some pain would hold him back, Priestess."

The squire bows to Luna and backs off, embarassed. Kierne has gotten a little shy. As for Ronan himself, he remains kneeling upon the floor but he turns his head, perhaps catching some of the words or wisps of them. His dark eyes seek Luna's but he says nothing, as yet.

Luna cocks her head and smirks at the poor boy she has so thoroughly embarrassed. "I would not know. It is good to hear." Suppressing a laugh at Kierne's expense, she catches Ronan's gaze and smoothly walks toward him. Her hands press together in greeting, but she does not break his silence before he does.

Ronan gets to his feet, bare feet, and offers Luna a smile as he scrapes a hand through his dark hair, "Normally," he rumbles low, "I should not be suitably attired for visitors." He smiles though and inclines his head to her. Not certain what he should do with his hands, he clasps them loosely behind his back and lifts his gaze to the bolts of cloth now hung around the balcony, the banners for House Kilgour and Crawford, all the other decorations being finalized today for the wedding. His attention comes back to her, "I trust you will be at the ceremony today? I should think Ro…. the Princess, she will be nervous."

Luna's gaze sweeps over the man's form, then shifts back to his face impassively. "I will not hold it against you this time, Your Grace," she notes with a smirk. Mirth fades quickly, though, as she quietly notes, "My presence no longer gives Her Highness comfort, but I will go to her to take her confession shortly."

The Rioga Duke gives a nod to Luna, "She has said that you criticize her family, which is not your place to do, Priestess. Perhaps at least not to her." Ronan bares his teeth a little ferally. It is very brief, "I think you will have to rewin her confidence, if that is even possible." He shrugs, "That is between you and she and not -my- place to interfer with." Ronan lifts his gaze to the windows as the first pale predawn light begins to ease the darkness without. "For the first time in some while, my heart is eased. I do what Sutherland needs and will continue to strive to do so." He looks back to Luna, "I would that the Princess will have /someone/ with whom she might hold confidence, be it you or another."

"In the way advising me on how to do my duty to her is nor your place, Your Grace?" Luna asks the question almost too mildly, then chuckles softly. "Any words I spoke to her regarding her family were in the context of offering her guidance or confession, neither of which I am at liberty to discuss with you, although she certainly can. Rest assured my actions are for the same goal as what I hope yours is, with regards to her — to bring her fulfillment."

Sorrow, or possibly pain, flickers briefly through her gaze as she admits, "She does need someone, and that person will not be me for sometime, if ever again. Aside from confessions, of course."

Ronan lifts a dark brow at Luna, "It was the Princess herself who said such to me that I was passing onto you, Priestess. If you think to force critisisms and 'advice' upon her where it is not wanted, I think her Highness be wise to seek a new confessor. Since after all, it's also your job to listen, not only to preach." That pale dawn light is slowly brightening. The Duke looks to those rose windows, then back to Luna, "If you will excuse me, I should like to finish my prayers ere my vigil is completed. Then I must dress and depart for it shall be a lengthy, busy day." A slight bow of his head to her, then Ronan turns to kneel and finish his prayers to Alasair and all of the Gods, hoping for their favour upon his marriage. Recent Kilgour-Crawford unions have not, after all, fared well.

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