Hazy and hot, and a popular day to be out in the courtyard of the Red Keep for many. Bryce Caron and another young Stormlander knight comes forth from the Royal Sept, quietly stopping to discuss something right outside the gates. Bryce seems to get warm more or less immediatly, and soon wipes the sweat of his brow. After a few exchanged words, Bryce’s companion departs and leaves the Caron knight alone. He remains where he is, only stepping over to rest against a tree and get some shade.
Being one of those who take a stroll around the castle this afternoon, Tancred seems to be quite busy investigating the buildings and walls making up this part of the castle. He is accompanied by a guard of his house who respectfully stay a few paces behind the young heir. Like Bryce, Tancreds brow does also show the effect of the warm sun radiating from the sky, as pearls of sweat forms on the surface of his skin. Apparently the thought of finding shade against the unforgiving sunrays makes him turn his attention away from studying the buildings and cast his glance on the tree Bryce has chosen as his sanctuary. “Ser Bryce,” Tancreds lips curls into a polite smile, “Any room for me below those sheltering leaves?” he walks closer to the heir of the Marches.
Bryce looks surprised at first when Tancred approaches him, but quickly offers a respectful bow. “Ser Tancred,” he mutters a bit gruffly, the Caron knight was seldom a cheerful person. “Certainly, just squeeze yourself in.” He twists his mouth into something that looks like a grin, since there’s obviously alot of space left for the Baratheon heir.
“Squeeze myself in?” Tancred asks, tilting his head, “Do you believe you have grown so much in size around your waist since we last spoke in Dorne, Ser?” There is a smile tickling his lips as he steps in next to Bryce and then waves at his guard, allowing him to find shelter as well. “It appears to me that you have found quite the spot where much can be observed without worrying about burning the skin.” His eyes glances at the people passing by before they seek Bryce again.
“You need not worry, you Baratheons with your black hair never risked much from the sun.” Bryce gives a short nod, and gives no sign that he might be saying that in a joking manner. Then, he rarely did in Dorne either, even when joking for real. “I, on the other hand, tend to burn all too easily.” He glances out. “So yes, it is a good place here. I have yet to grow accustomed to the city and the keep, but I am sure my days resting under a tree are counted. I have letters to write that I have put off too long.”
“Ah, letters.. Surely they are more annoying to write than to receive,” Tancred replies dryly while looking at the people passing by, not far away from them a few guards are leaving, only to be replaced by a few others. “My father wishes that I spend some time here in order to make acquaintances..” Tancred suddently states in a quiet voice, “So far most of the ‘making accquantiances’ have been a rather dull affair.. It has truly not been as entertaining as the moments we had in Dorne.. I kind of miss sparring with you. The expression on your face when getting a strike through your parades is most enjoyable to watch.” A small smile makes its way on his lips.
The young heir to the Marches and the young heir of Storm’s End is enjoying a quiet conversation sheltered against the sun below a tree standing close to the sept. Tancred is accompanied by a guard in Baratheon colors.
The sept is a quiet, holy place, many come and go through the day. A slender form clad in mourning steps out and kisses the cheek of an accompanying septa before veiling her pale features and walking slowly, thoughtfully past the two knights.
“Ser Bryce, Ser Tancred,” Elanna Penrose bows her head in greeting to each man as she draws close to them, and there is something in her voice, a softness, a tearful softness that her time within the Sept has wrought.
“I didn’t know I made an expression,” Bryce mutters quietly at the confession of the younger knight, but after a few seconds of thinking, he offers: “We could spar here, too. I practiced some earlier, but I always need more.” He looks around as if to locate where they are, and where the sparring grounds are. Looking back, he continues in his somewhat held back and deep voice: “I am supposed to get to know others as well, here, but I find it dull as well.. and when it isn’t dull, it’s a mess.” He quickly looks up when Elanna approaches, and he takes a step back from beneath the tree to offer her a proper bow. “My lady.”
“A sparring here? Before my sweet aunt?” Tancred asks with an amused smile before he too offers a bow to Elanna, his face suddently growing serious again as he eyes the expression on her face. “I bid you good day, dear Aunt,” he pauses for a moment searching for words, “I.. miss him too.” The amused smile from before has left his face, now replaced by the serious mirthless expression that so often exists on his face. “He was a honorable and kind man, and I am honored to have served him as his squire.. I shall always keep the memory of him fresh in my mind.”
“No,” Bryce protests with a mutter, “I meant spar here in the keep, in the city, in our stay in King’s Landing.. Practice is always needed.” he falls silent and looks at the two that started talking. Taking a step back, he watches them to not interfere in their topic.
Elanna turns aside her face for a moment, her features misted by the fine silk, “Thankyou, nephew. Some days are easier than others.” She regards Bryce then with a sapphirine gaze, “I am a Baratheon, ser, I understand sword work,” she encompasses Tancred in her glance, “Whether it is done before me, or in the yards, I care not..though the septons might.” She clasps her fingers firmly.
“and you said that meeting people here in King’s Landing was boring?” she raises a dark brow, “Might I enquire as to why?”
A small smile forms on Tancreds lips, thinking himself fortunate that Elanna did not hear himself expressing a much similar oppinion a little earlier. He turns his gaze towards Bryce however, “Of course we should practice, I have always found such both entertaining and educating. My aunt speaks the truth, though.. When people seek the silence in the Sept, they need not watch a few combatants throw themselves at eachother when they leave. Perhaps it was impolite of us to speak so openly of such things at a place like this, where our intentions could be misunderstood?” He glances at Elanna.
Bryce seems to go a bit defensive and chews at his lower lip, smoothening his doublet. “I apologize, my lady, did not mean to spar here or talk about it..” Pause. “I mean, I regret doing so. Was not my intention to cause harm..” His deeply set eyes watch her carefully before they are drawn to the side, and he mutters: “Not boring per se, my lady, but it is not what I am used to doing.”
There is the faintest pursing of her lips, as Elanna regards both men, “A shame you feel that way about folk, Ser Bryce. I would be distressed to hear my nephew speaking in such a manner,” she looks upon the young kins-knight, one might wonder if she did indeed hear him, “Taking upon the title of Lord Baratheon would require often making acquaintance and maintaining good relations with all the Stormlords and others beyond. It is no small trick and must be learned very early. To alienate anyone is a grievous offense and a mistake.”
“Ah..” Tancred breathes in slowly, considering a reply, “.. To be honest, I did mention to Ser Bryce a little earlier that I have too found making acquaintances here a little dull, which I assume you must have heard..” His blue eyes are fixed on his aunt as he speaks, “Not that making acquaintances is dull, and not because I wish to alienate anyone or cause any offence.. But so far I have not had the pleasure of enjoying many .. hmm.. more deep conversations here, as I had the pleasure sharing with you when I squired to your late husband, dear aunt. So far it has mostly been polite exchanges of words and greetings.” His eyes havent left her face yet, “.. I am well aware however that sharing polite exchanges of words and greetings are required before any deeper conversation can take place.”
Tancred turns his head, smiling a little at Bryce, “Though I must admit that with Ser Bryce we had a sparring match before beginning any conversation.. this was of course years ago when we were both younger and he visited us along with his lord father.”
“I have mainly been the subject of insults and laughing at the expense of me,” Bryce says in a disgruntled fashion, although it is not targeted at any of them. “This does not make for a good impression, yet I am not one to discard the wisdom that you speak of. My Lord Grandfather has shared it with me before, and I intend to do my duty here.” Bryce inclines his head, then looks at Tancred slowly.
“I still remember it, even if the situation was a little less fair then. I remember how much I had been growing then.. two years now seem a lot less.” Still no smile or humor in the young knight’s voice.
“Insults and laughing,” the Penrose widow raises a dark brow, “I see. That is unfortunate for the son of a Stormlord. I confess, I do not remember your face, but perhaps I was in attendance at the Penrose estates at the time.” She regards both men again with equanimity.
“From the smallest acquaintance might alliance and friendship form,” she remarks softly, “It is meet for all here to remember that, I think.”
Neither alliance, notr acquaintance, nor friendship strides briskly across the yard this day—only Ser Jaesin Lannister. The heir to Casterly Rock pays the small gathering little mind as he crosses from east to west.
“Friendship and alliances are more important than sitting on coffers filled with gold,” Tancred replies in a way that reveals that what he just said most likely was a quote from someone, perhaps from his father, “A man is judged by the friends he make and by how he treats them.” Tancred nods slowly, “.. My lord father have taught me such, and as in everything else he has taught me, his words weight heavilly in my mind.” He offers his aunt a smile and inclines his head towards Bryce with a face showing a neutral expression, “Yes, Ser Bryce, I remember very well that you were quite taller than me, but still .. honorably.. allowed me to strike you once for every three times you landed a blow against me.. When seeing my bruises, my mother forbade us to spar again..”
Elanna it seems, espies the passing of the Lannister knight, and it is thus she speaks greeting to him, “Good day, Ser Jaesin. You seem in a rush to be somewhere?” A quirk of a dark brow as her blue gaze regards him thoughtfully.
Pausing—slowing, more like, for his feet in truth never stop moving—Ser Jaesin favors Elanna Baratheon with a rushed but dazzling smile.
“No sense in moving slowly when the dragons call, my lady,” he laughs!
“Fare you well!” And with that, the Lannister knight continues on his way.
Bryce nods and a smile creeps up to haunt his features, if only for a little while. “You never told me she forbade us, Ser Tancred. If I had known, I would never have agreed to yet another go, before my father dragged me away.” The smile widens somewhat, but whatever it is that he is going to say is interupted by the presence of Jaesin and the Caron knight takes a step back to simply peer at the great knight.
“Lannisters,” Elanna shakes her head with some vague amusement, “Always seeming to be running everywhere, and achieving…ahh, but that is unkind.” She waves a slender hand, but then looks upon Tancred with some surprise.
“My lady Leyne demanded you not fight your betters?” Elanna looks somewhat surprised at this, “Well…that is unusual.”
“Uhm.. That part I fail to remember, Ser Bryce” Tancred replies dryly while looking briefly at his aunt, his face showing no hint of amusement though something is playing in his eyes. “How come you find this unusual, dear Aunt?” he asks, tilting his head a little to the side while looking at her with blue eyes that appears to be darker in the shade of the tree offering him shelter against the rays of the sun.
Bryce looks at the other knight a bit surprised, but it quickly disappears from his features as he, too, turns to look at Elanna and hear her response to this.
“That she would have protected you, the heir of Baratheon, from a few bruises and learning from a superior bladesman?” Elanna frowns, then shrugs, “But if it is as you say, very well. I am glad to see that it did not prevent you from coming home to us all, safe and unharmed.”
Tancreds face darkens a little and his voice is lowered slightly, “I am certain, dear aunt, that you are aware of how my lady mother felt loosing my older brother.. She has always wished to.. protect me.” He pauses for a moment, quickly offering a glance at Bryce before turning his attention back to Elanna, “I do not fear bruises, nor do I fear wounds.. But I will not cause my lady mother the same grief she has already experienced once.” His blue eyes flicker for a brief moment, perhaps showing a hint of emotions.
Bryce seems to have adapted a rather defensive expression and stays out of the discussion between the two, looking away before looking at Tancred a bit impatiently, his deeply set blue eyes watching him intently.
“To be a Stormlord’s wife is grief, Tancred,” Elanna remarks coolly, “We give of husbands, sons and brothers to protect our borders. I gave of my own husband and thus, I will have no sons. You might wish to spare your mother grief, and that might be commendable, but you are Baratheon and you have a duty.” The latter words are spoken softly.
“You are Lord Corwen’s son moreso than you must be a Mertyn,” she speaks of her brother more firmly, and with respect, “And to draw the respect of the Stormlord’s he commands, you must be as he is, not as a cautious man tending to his mother’s wishes.”
It would seem the Baratheon maid learned much in her time at Storm’s End.
The eyes of the young heir to Storm’s End widens slightly at her words and his voice drops even lower while his blue eyes watches her intently, now with anger showing in them, “Do you not know me at all, dear aunt?” he asks, his voice soft and calm, “.. I -am- my fathers son, and it saddens me that you brings this in question before a friend and ally.” He breathes in slowly, his face showing a neutral expression, though his eyes betray him, “I know my duty, the duty of the Stormlords.. The blood of the Stormlords flows in my veins and I will defend our borders and sacrifice my life if need be.. Did I not tell you that I stood above the body of your late husband, defending him against the Dornishmen because it was my duty to do so. I am -not- without honor.” Again he breathes in slowly, while the mask on his face remains rock hard.
“Do not snap at me, Tancred,” Elanna’s sapphirine eyes darken, “I am still your elder and have more of a notion or two about how all of this might work. You -might- be fair with your blade but you have much to learn about listening. Baratheon is my pride and honour and I would have you keep that tradition going, and I am willing to assist. Blood in the veins, a sword and declarations of honour does not a good leader make.” She regards the young knight up and down, and continues a little more gently, “You are fifteen, nephew. Not thirty and ready to assume Lordship. You are a long way from it yet and the sooner you realise it the better you will be because you have to -listen-. If you profess dislike to listening to me, then listen to men like Sarmion, like Ser Dagur, like Ser Almer. Remember the teachings of my husband. But if your pride continues in such a way…” she shakes her head, “You will be losing your temper as soon as someone calls you a young upstart, and soonafter lose their respect. Do you see what I am saying?”
The lesson was harsh-spake, but held a ring of truth.
Seven hells, what did he get himself into.. Bryce quickly offers a: “I shall depart, I hope to see you again, both of you,” in a quiet mutter before he politely withdraws from his place in the shade beneath the leaves of the tree. Some things are better left private to the ones it concern. He doesn’t run away or hurry, that would be improper, but retreats slowly from the scene like he had planned to all along.
Tancred straightens himself, now remaining silent for a few moments while watching his aunt. There is a hint of confusion on his face, not understanding why on earth he is scolded like this. Still he remains silent, just watching her while his face remains calm, showing very little emotions. “Dear aunt..” He starts slowly, “.. If I have snapped at you, then I apologize sincerely.” His voice is still calm, whatever anger that might reside within him is not revealed through his voice, “I know the value of listening, dear aunt.. and of course I do not have the experience of my uncle Sarmion, or my lord father, I never claimed such. I also know that I still have much to learn.. I have never claimed otherwise.” He breathes in slowly again, “But I know my duties, as well as my lord father has taught them to me, and I know what is honorable and what is not.” He offers her a polite smile, “.. Please forgive my.. pride.. But have the Stormlords not always been proud? My lord father is proud, and I am proud to be his son.” He tilts his head a little, then he offers a polite bow, “Please forgive me, dear aunt, I am required to return soon, I am to meet a maester here to discuss the engineering used in building these walls..”
“We shall see,” Elanna merely replies, thoughtful, and repeats, “We shall see.” She nods her farewell.
“Good day,” her voice is distant, and thus she walks toward the inner keep.