Blood of Dragons

The 'A Song of Ice and Fire' MUSH


The Incidental Storyteller
IC Date: Day 23 of Month 2, 158 AC.
RL Date: November 22, 2006.
Participants: Carmella Dondarrion, Elanna Penrose, Jonn Lannister and Jyana Arryn, called the Jewel of the Eyrie.
Locations: Red Keep: Maegor's Holdfast <Guest Apartments>.

Summary: After her visit to Carmella Dondarrion's apartments, Jyana Arryn runs into her good cousin, Jonn Lannister. Reminded of his promise to tell her a story from the night of the homecoming feast, Jonn tells her of how he was knighted...and where his hatred of his brother, Jaesin, truly comes from.

Dusty? For certain.

Dirty? Some women might think so.

But drunk? The aroma of wine does not waft from his body, nor are his cheeks blustery with it. Yet there is some strange way that he carries himself, some hitch in his step, some gleam in his eye, that does not suggest he comes here as the Seven intended. Or is that gleam simply…

...Jonn being what he is: A Lannister of Casterly Rock.

“Thank you very much for letting me stay, Ser Amond,” Jyana says, curtseying to the Hedge Knight, and being as polite as always. She turns around then, stepping away from the door of Carmella’s apartments, and walks down the hall. Before she rounds it however, someone catches her attention, stepping into view.

There is a small blink, and she smiles.

“Jonn!” she calls out, with the same enthusiasm in her tone whenever she greets him, trotting towards him.

Carmella shakes her head and moves to take a seat again, though her eyes drift towards the tray of sweets. “No, please I am fine, there is no need to trouble yourself,” she says, only to be momentarily distracted by another yell from outside, causing another quick blush to rise. “I hope they’re finished,” she says, bending down to pick up a book that had been left. She barely even looks at the cover as she crosses over to the bookshelf to put it back.

“No doubt both of them have thought over what had happened. Though that it did not come to blows makes me happy for while my brother is well-trained, your brother’s legacy is well-known, Lady Elanna. But, as you say, that is their concern.”

“Indeed, I would prefer we remain as friends,” Elanna affirms with a a smile, “Let them sort it out between them. Sarmion knows how to stay his blade though…when to wield it, and when not…” She frowns at the doorway then.

“Who comes?”

Green, narrow eyes look from one woman to the next.

If there is one thing Black Jonn mistrusts, it is a gathering of women.

But as his name is called, he looks around to Jyana and the suspicion is gone at once. “Ah, dear young Jyana,” he says jovially, as though he were not merely four years her senior—but rather more of fifteen or twenty, “I see you are in good spirits today.”

However, that hardly is a deterrent for his ears listening intently to the discussion of the two women’s brothers. He seems almost to laugh, but refrains momentarily; for he is in the midst of an entirely different sort of conversation.

The Jewel steps up, and unabashedly hugs her good cousin around the waist like a little girl welcoming her father home. But Jyana pulls away after, smiling up at the taller Lannister. “What are you doing here?” she asks, folding her arms behind her back. “I thought you were staying at the Lannisters’ manse today?”

Black Jonn pats the Jewel on the back—and there is no awkwardness in the gesture, despite the rumors that float around the young Arryn and all of Lord Loren’s children—smiling down on her either benevolently or mock-benevolently—likely the latter. “I was going to,” he says, “but Jaesin and Mat are saying their prayers to the Dragonknight shrine in the kitchen, so…” There is a smirk on his face as he says this, and it is entirely cousinar whether he jokes or not.

Carmella was halfway into a chair when Elanna’s question is asked, but the Dondarrion girl doesn’t have an answer for her, she’s as lost as Elanna. “It seems as if there is no lack of visitors today,” she murmurs, getting back to her feet and crosses over to the door herself. She had heard Jyana speaking to someone, but the voices were cut off as the door closed, not that she would have recognized the Lannister’s voice.

She opens the door to find Ser Amond still there, watching Jyana and Jonn without a flicker of amusement. He could be a statue for all the good he’s doing at the moment. “Lady Jyana?” Carmella holds the door open, should Elanna follow behind her. “Is everything all right?”

“....why would they be praying to the Dragonknight?” Jyana says with a furrow of her brows, looking up at Jonn with a confused expression. “Isn’t that a little heretical?” She didn’t peg Jaesin to be a blasphemer after all, though Mat…well, Mat seemed like a playboy, but he seemed an honest-to-goodness Seven-worshipper.

When Carmella pokes her head out, Jyana turns and smiles, waving slightly to her. “Everything’s alright,” she says simply. “It’s just my good cousin. I was greeting him.”

Elanna does not follow, she remains seated rather, by the window this time, a goblet of honey milk in hand from which she sips periodically.

“Who is it, Carmella?” the Penrose widow queries.

There is a moment of silence as Jonn considers his good-cousin’s response, and then his eyes, utterly inscrutable, his face giving away nothing, flash toward Carmella.

But his smile? No, there is none; he merely looks at the woman, as though judging her for some heinous crime.

Still, he says to Jyana, but softly: “The Dragonknight is second in my brothers’ esteem only to the Seven, if it be heretical otherwise.”

The Dondarrion’s dark eyes look to Jonn, meeting his gaze but when he does not smile, her own smile slips. She blinks and then looks back to Jyana, the confusion retreating as she gives her a brief nod. “Then I won’t trouble you any longer,” she finally says before stepping back into the room, letting the door close behind her.

“It was an cousin of Lady Jyana’s,” Carmella explains to Elanna, just now realizing she never got the man’s name. “I would guess Lannister by the look of him, but perhaps not.” The expression had faded from Carmella’s eyes as she turned back towards Elanna, but the confusion begins to rise in her voice. “I don’t believe my intrusion was welcome,” she adds.

The look between Jonn and Carmella doesn’t miss her scrutiny. Jyana’s mirthful expression fades. And while she doesn’t frown, there is a look of seriousness about her as she regards her cousin, even when Carmella is long gone behind the doors of her apartments.

“Jonn….?” she asks softly, in a subtle inquiry.

But when he turns to her and whispers what he does, she nods. “He’s made some indication of his regard for him - I met him the other day. Half of it was curiosity really, I was wondering what about him that you loathed so much, he didn’t seem particularly so to me.”

“With Lannisters, they rarely are, dear,” Elanna drawls airily, “So which is it? Jaesin or Jonn? Or is there more cousins in King’s Landing I know nothing of?” She sips again.

“Come sit, dear, if he intends on visiting, I am sure he shall.”

As the Dondarrion woman speaks and subsequently leaves again, a smirking grin fills Jonn’s leonine face. But it falls swiftly as he speaks…

“Ser Jaesin—” as the ser is bitten off, chewed, and swallowed quite nastily, “believes I am a drunk, yet spends no time in my company to discover the truth. No doubt you would have the same idea if you knew me less well, Jyana.”

He seems to want to forget such things. “But no matter; I will become the worst lecher he has ever heard of, if that is what he wants of me. He is very cute when incensed, do you not agree?”
And then: “Tell me, was that a Dondarrion? Ser Doran’s sister perhaps?” He licks his lips—or rather, his tongue moistens his lips unconsciously. Perhaps they were dry?

“I remember seeing Ser Jaesin at the feast and that certainly wasn’t him,” Carmella says, taking the seat suggested by Elanna. Her brow furrows, that look given still lingering in her mind and she looks to be trying to puzzle something out. “Though I can’t imagine why he’d be visiting, I don’t even know the man,” she adds, looking over at her current companion as the lines on her forehead begin to fade.

“Lady Jyana had mentioned a trip out into the city,” Carmella starts again, changing the topic to once again, something more comfortable. “I do hope you would join us. I fear to say I don’t know what the lady has planned, but I think a visit outside the Red Keep might be a fine idea, I’ve only seen a small amount of King’s Landing.”

She takes the vitriol from Jonn in good stride, for Jyana expected it - she was no stranger to Jonn’s loathing of Jaesin. She just watches her good cousin’s face quietly with those aquamarine eyes.

“Perhaps,” she tells him quietly. “But I -do- know you better than that and I know wine isn’t all you cherish in this world.” She rests a gentle hand on his arm.

She shakes her head. “He doesn’t want that, I don’t think. He is your brother, deep down he does care about you,” she argues gently, lips pursing just a bit.

His last inquiry catches her offguard. “Yes….and growing to be a good friend of mine,” she replies. “Do you know her?”

“Oh dear,” Elanna chuckles, “So Ser Jonn it is. This should be interesting.” She casts a sparkling glance at the door only briefly before turning her attention back to Carmella.

“Where do you plan to go? I have been to the Dragonpit…and…” she frowns, “Oh yes, the Three Hills Inn. Charming place. quite…rustic.” Snobbish, much.

“You are such a nice girl,” Jonn says with a laugh, “to put up with such a boorish good-cousin.”

Then he looks at the door Carmella passed through, chews on his lip for a moment. “I know her brother, though we are not what you would call friends.”

“Rustic,” Carmella repeats, letting the word roll off her tongue, it has a familiar sound to it. “Would that be the same inn that you and Lady Reyna were telling us about?” Carmella remembers the discussion well and the place didn’t sound all that inviting at that time either. “I had once a mind to visit the Street of Silk when I first arrived in King’s Landing. That is, until I was informed of the kind of offerings are to be found there.” Carmella actually smiles a little at that, considering their earlier conversation on silk in the bedroom.

“Aside from that, I’m afraid I don’t know. I suspect that Lady Jyana might have some ideas, though if she does not I am sure we can find some establishments to entertain us.”

“I like to think that if you’re boorish in others’ eyes that you’re more honest than most to be so unafraid of exposing your flaws,” Jyana explains simply. “But I think you -are- a good man, cousin. No matter what anyone else says.”

She watches him glance back to the door of Carmella’s rooms. “Ser Doran has not made many friends either since his return,” she says softly. “His sister suffers because of his latest actions. It grieves me, for she has shown me nothing but kindness. She is the first friend I have made here.”

“When I was thirteen,” says Jonn, explaining calmly, “and not yet even a squire, I was in a tournament and a young Ser Doran unhorsed me in battle. Well, naturally, I could not let such a slight go unpunished, so I drew my sword and called him a coward.”

He shrugs, “I did not think it so untoward. He was boasting of unhorsing a thirteen year old page, and that made his skill with the lance legendary. Albert Hill had to tie the lance to my arm, I believe—” he winks slyly, “—and yet Ser Doran has never forgiven that slight. His honor is a bit too prickly, I think.”

Jyana sighs. It wasn’t disapproving, but it certainly did sound a touch exasperated. She wouldn’t dare to do such around his elders - but this was Jonn, and Jonn she loves like a brother.

“You were young, and he is several years older than you….” she observes. “How could he really boast over a squire? I would think that knights would like to test their mettle against those of equal or superior rank.”

She can’t help but shake her head however.

“I shall!” Elanna smiles again, “Please come see me soon and do enjoy wearing that veil. I did.” She reaches out to squeeze Carmella’s hand briefly, before making for the door, tilting her head at Jonn Lannister and a smile for Jyana, before disappearing down the corridor.

“Are those really the rules of a tournament?” Jyana says, her voice contemplative at Jonn’s simple answer. Perhaps it was just the famous Lannister pride talking, but she has never experienced a tournament herself. “That doesn’t seem very logical to me. A 13 year old is a 13 year old, no matter the name.” She gives her opinion freely, blowing a lock of blonde hair away from her eyes.

Jyana waves to Elanna as she passes, smiling faintly.

“I suppose,” Jonn offers after a silent moment, “that I was rather more vain than most thirteen year olds, but no more skilled in the lance and riding than I ought to have been.”

Then he nods slowly, “You are right, of course; a 13 year old is a 13 year old, regardless of who his father may be. But Doran is overproud, and from every victory can you pull something to brag about for years to come.”

“Isn’t vanity the family curse of the Lannisters?” Jyana teases delicately. “What with the prickly pride of the Arryns, or whether the next coin flip of the gods produces a great or mad Targaryen?” She sighs, and closes her eyes for a moment.

Her blue-green eyes open again at what he says. “I understand, even if I think it’s….” She pauses. “Perhaps we’re too concerned about honor, us Arryns. I don’t see any prestige coming out of knocking a young boy off a horse.” She pauses. “I cannot help but examine what I say these days and feel myself all the more unusual in these walls…”

She looks up to regard Jonn intently. “This incident with Ser Doran…this…wasn’t the sole reason why you’re not on the lists often? From what I’ve heard?” She doesn’t mention who she has heard such from.

“I was meant to lose in the lists that day,” says Jonn with a strange smile, his head shaking slowly back and forth. Something is left unsaid. “And I have never felt the need to return. It’s all a little silly, isn’t it? Riding in full armor at another man so that you may thump him with a big stick?”

“It is,” Jyana says softly, watching him with a sort of profound tenderness that could only be present on the face of one who felt the way she did. “I can see the practical purposes of competition and mock battles, but…” She seems to sense that is isn’t all, but she doesn’t pry Jonn for details. If he wants to tell her, he’ll tell her in time. But then she smiles, more cheerfully. “As I told your brother,” she says. “I’ve grown up knowing that I would never really -truly- know Jonn Lannister. Even with my marked efforts.”

For just a moment, at his right side, Jonn’s fingers begin to fidget—as though searching for something that ought to be at his side but is not. It is a sad smile that he gives his good-cousin then. “Once,” he says softly, “Jonn Lannister knew Jonn Lannister. But war changes a man, and not all change is for the better.”

“But,” he says, looking away, towards some point in unknown space, “at least you have tried, and with more than a cursory effort.”

Her hand drops, reaching out with her fingertips to touch his and squeezing his palm warmly. Jyana doesn’t say anything for a while, aquamarine eyes searching his face for a few moments from where she stands, much shorter compared to himself. “I’ve never experienced war, but I do know it changes people. I saw that, yesterday. I suppose with all that conflict…I don’t think anyone who has experienced the same could ever be blamed for losing part of themselves there.”

She smiles faintly. “At least despite the changes, even if you don’t know what they are yourself, I still love you, cousin. That’s not going to change anytime soon.”

A wry smile comes to Lannister lips.

“Perhaps it is a good thing I stopped you hurling yourself down the stairs after all,” he offers, irony everywhere.

Her fingers let go, and Jyana laughs at the jest, shaking her head slightly. “I,” she begins stepping away and gesturing to the side. “Was a little falcon who didn’t know she was being caged for her own good. The follies of childhood, I suppose.”

She smiles. “But yes. I’d like to think of that day as a very good thing.”

“Anyway,” Jonn says, shaking out his heads by his sides. “Let’s talk about something a little less depressing…”

He smiles sidewise again, and asks, eyebrow arching. “So, I hear you’ve been spending a lot of time in the company of Tancred Baratheon…”

Jyana leans against one of the walls, folding her arms behind her back and tilting her head attentively to her good cousin. “Alright,” she says easily enough. After all, she has nothing to hide…

But what he says at the last was rather surprising. She blinks a little bit at that. “Some time,” she corrects honestly. “But not a lot. I’ve really only spoken to him twice. Why? What about him? To speak frankly, I’m really more acquainted with his lovely aunt.”

“It’s just that,” says Ser Jonn, folding his arms over his chest protectively. “I find that all my young cousins who, when I left were gangly girls, have turned into women while I’ve been at war. And now all these bums…”

He shakes his head and gives the softest of laughs. “But it is not Tancred who disturbs me. Promise me, dear good-cousin, you will fly far and fast if you see a Ser Bryce Caron angling your way.”

She watches him for a few moments, before Jyana grins, that mischievous light returning to her eyes. “Why, good cousin? How could I even -dream-,” she speaks dramatically. “Of considering other men when I adore you and you alone?” She bats her lashes for added effect.

She shakes her head a little bit. “I’ve spoken to him once or twice. I don’t think you needn’t worry about that. He’s afraid of speaking to me because he cannot help but bring you up and he’d rather not cause any antagonism between us as your quarrel has nothing to do with me.” She laughs. “I’ve received many compliments but no serious pursuers. Much to the relief of my beloved, formidable grandfather I’m sure.”

‘And mine,’ is silently added, but it remains unsaid.

“It’s not your considering that worries me, Jyana,” Black Jonn mutters under his breath, like small rocks being poured from a bucket.

“Much to the relief of your good-cousin Jonn, too,” he continues, his voice light and filled with merriment once more. “Yet,” he cracks his knuckles menancingly, or perhaps merely in jest, “you will be sure to tell me if any knight should… act without honor, won’t you?”

“I know.”

Jyana responds to the mutter and she sighs, glancing down the hallway. “It was one of the things that Ser Jaesin brought up when I conversed with him.” She refrains, however, of saying in what context. The last thing she wants was to cause more friction between the brothers.

At the cracking of knuckles, she can’t help but laugh. “Jonn,” she says, leveling him with a look, though mirth remains in her gaze. “I’m quite certain that every knight in this castle knows that anyone who acts dishonorably towards me is tantamount to a death sentence.”

“Or at the very least a vicious thrashing sentence. Which is probably less preferrable considering the amount of pain prolonged.”

“Not like that will stop them,” says Jonn sadly. “Poor boys, they have been so long without a woman and then they see one such as you. I advise they get married if they’re going to war again. Makes things a lot simpler when you come home… well, at least on some fronts.”

“Mm.” Jyana seems relatively unconcerned, but she does smile fondly over -his- concern. Perhaps it is folly, perhaps it’s naivete, but she also seems confident of those who love her to be able to protect her. Either that, or she is confident that she would avoid that sort of trouble somehow. Who knows? “You overestimate my appeal perhaps, good cousin. I’ve already been described as unusual once or twice.”

She exhales slowly. “So,” she says, in an effort to push the topic away from herself. “You promised me a story.”

“A story?” Jonn asks, his brows furrowing suddenly. “What kind of story do you want?”

He is thinking, obviously very hard about a story.

Girlishly, Jyana grins, and before Jonn knows it, her hand reaches out to snag his, spinning around in a flurry of skirts so she could drag him towards the more comfortable common areas of the Guest Tower so they may sit down, and once she finds a place with cushions, she makes a beeline in that general direction.

She lets go when she reaches them, taking a seat and looking up at him expectantly. “How were you knighted? You mentioned it happened during a battle in Dorne. Which battle? And who knighted you?”

The flurry of motion overtakes Jonn, and gives him time to frown and bite his lower lip for the briefest of seconds. But when he is properly situated, or rather situated to Jyana’s fancy, he has a happy smile on his face—as though the circumstances that led to his knighting were from a fairy tale, or perhaps a fool’s song.

“It was not a battle, persay, but it was on the Prince’s Pass in Dorne…”

And so he tells of the treacherous Prince’s Pass, the heat and the cold, the rocks, the mud and his promise to his cousin Landyll as he die. The departure of his fair brother to fight with Prince Aemon, and his bequeathing of the Lannister host to Jonn, not yet a knight, to the chagrin of Lord Tyrell.

“But I showed him how worthy I was,” he concludes, unable to hide the stabbing irony, “I showed him that a Lannister is a lion, no matter if he is the golden, white, black, gray, or brown. And so he knighted me for my valor, knighting me for saving his life and his men.”

There is a sense, however, that Black Jonn might be leaving something out. No matter, it is a rousing tale regardless.

Jyana is perceptive, and she catches the sense of something left out, but she allows Jonn this moment - for he has experienced little of the same. She has heard much of Jaesin Lannister, the pride of Casterly Rock, but seldom of Jonn save rumors of his notoriety that have reached her ears in King’s Landing upon her arrival.

And so she listens, smiling because he is smiling, and genuinely happy that she has asked him to recount something he actually savors in recounting. She asks questions in the middle of it - perhaps unusual for such a maid, but not too unusual for a young woman raised by seasoned fighting men: how Jonn commanded the men bequeathed to him. Which positions did they take. The terrain on the Prince’s Pass.

When he finishes his story, she is smiling at him openly. “I’m glad,” she begins. “That you were able to make a valuable contribution and it was recognized in the end. Always, when it truly matters, you manage to prevail.”

Her smile grows more gentle at that. “That is yet another thing that hasn’t changed about you.”

“A young boy of eighteen,” says Jonn, closing his eyes, as though traversing the ways of time with his mind, “placed in charge of the entire Westerlands army.”

He laughs softly, though not bitterly. “They were angry at first; angry that cousin Landyll would die, angry that Jaesin would leave, angry that this pup, this good-for-nothing boy—” a tear comes unbidden to his eye, but it does not fall, “—was now their commander, their leader. They are my brothers now. I kept them alive when no one else would.”

Then his eyes open, and he blinks. “Truly I am sorry, Jyana. I don’t reckon you needed to hear all that.”

“Though,” his voice lowers to a whisper, “perhaps now you see why I despise my brother so.”

“You told me before,” Jyana says softly. “That you are able, as strange as that may be to some, to tell me things that you wouldn’t be able to tell anyone else. You may think I don’t need to hear everything you have just said, and maybe I do not but I want to, because not listening to you would be to abandon you, and I cannot do that.”

At the last, it does seem a little clearer to her, and she nods. “You despise your brother because he left you when you needed him the most,” she states, though she looks at him to try and gauge if she is correct. “And perhaps, maybe…you thought that as your brother he would have been able to sense that, but didn’t. He preferred to ride with the Dragonknight instead. Am I correct, Jonn?”

She doesn’t comment for a bit, leaning against the back of her chair. “....he…Ser Jaesin doesn’t despise you. I know that much at least,” she says softly. “Truth be told I don’t think he knows any of this, Jonn. He may have had his reasons, of course, but those are his to tell and not mine.”

“That fat fool,” Jonn nearly spits, “that fat fool Lord Tyrell… he insulted Jaesin. Called him things that I’d never even heard of before, said things about father…”

He pauses, takes a deep breath: “I told you of the Prince’s Pass, the sortie that I led to gain my knighthood. But before that, my army and I sat motionless on the top of the hill looking into the valley. We watched until we were certain Tyrell had learned his lesson and only then did we charge, saving his victory at the last possible moment.”

His voice rises and he slams his fist into his palm. “But men died that day! Men that needn’t have done. And do you know why, good-cousin?”

Even at the sudden outburst and the violet lashing on his person, Jyana watches this without flinching, her expression serene, yet most certainly somber. There is an aching sadness to her gaze that touches down to the line of her soft, dew clung mouth, and even as Jonn berates the air, recalls what happens with his tone dripping of both pain and vitriol, she weathers the storm like the mountain in which she had been born and almost died upon several times.

She couldn’t even find any fault in that, in a situation where the presence of a sense of equity that she held so dear is questionable, or perhaps even completely missing. Arryns were stalwart of their honor, when well deserved a restitution of it, as this case seemed to be, it seemed that justice was done.

But at what cost?

She remains silent at his question. She waits for him to tell her.

“Because,” he says, “my brother cared more for his personal glory than for the honor of his family. I was the one who had to pay for that.”

He laughs then, and seems returned to his usual calm, easy-going self. “I tried to drink Dorne dry of wine to forget it, and… and… I don’t think I’m done yet.”

He sighs loudly. “Well now that I’ve gone and told you -everything-, it’s okay if you want to disown me and urge Lira to do the same.”

There is no comment about the drinking, or anything else after his answer. It seems perhaps that Jyana’s regard for Jonn Lannister had cooled. But she had always been the patient sort, watching him with those eyes and letting silence answer him for just a few moments.

A hand reaches out to gently take his, the Jewel turning it around and tracing her fingers affectionately over weapon-callused skin. Drawing it closer, she bends her head to press her lips gently on his knuckles, his larger hand enveloped by her smaller, infinitely more delicate ones, much like she would for her elders to nonverbally imprint the degree of her devotion to their skin.

She lowers his hand and her own and sighs. “Don’t be stupid,” she chastizes gently.

At that, the Black Lannister is unable to control himself. He grins—you guessed it—stupidly. “Well, now you know the real Jonn Lannister. So if anybody asks…”

He pauses for a very long, dramatic moment. “...make something up.”

Then he winks, and old Jonn has returned.

She rolls her eyes in an exaggerated manner, but Jyana smiles back at him. “That’s the problem, you dolt,” she tells him chidingly, but with no small degree of affection. “Nobody -bothers- to ask. That’s why we’re having this discussion to begin with.”

She grins. “Besides I’m not sure if you’d want me to do that anyway. My mental creativity’s only grown since we saw each other last. The stories might just end up being bizarre.”

“It could be fun,” Jonn says, smiling affectionately. Most women would be uncomfortable, alone with Jonn Lannister—but then, they do not truly know him. “Very fun. I hear gossip is favored among the ladies of King’s Landing.”

“Don’t even -start-,” Jyana groans, crossing her arms over her chest and flopping huffily on the seat, a petulant twist to her mouth. “I come here to King’s Landing only to hear some of my brethren actually thought I tried to throw myself off Alyssa’s Tears out of sheer and traumatic heartbreak of your brother’s rejection. Who honestly -believes- that?”

Jonn’s golden brows shoot up his creased forehead. “They said that, did they?”

He winks… audaciously. “Perhaps I ought to tell them about how it was I who saved you from that miserable fate. What did I say? The bounce might take such a pretty jewel into the Trident, and rubies sink the same as stones.”

He seems pleased by his own wit.

His wit earns him a small, decorative cushion flung towards his face.

“My sides,” Jyana remarks dryly, fighting the urge to grin in favor of a completely deadpanned expression. “They split like melons on a kitchen block.”

With a sigh, she moves to stand up from her seat, folding her arms behind her back as she turns to regard her good cousin. “Thank you very much for the story,” she says, gently this time with a small smile. “But I should head for bed….it’s late.”

And the Lannister engulfs his young good-cousin in a massive hug. Lannister embraces, they say, are unlike anything in all the Seven Kingdoms. You don’t know if you’ll escape, or if you’ll be dragged back to the lion’s den. But Black Jonn lets go this time. “If ever you have a need for a story, you need but simply click your heels together twice and toss a bag of… is it salt or rice? I can never remember. Regardless, I have plenty of tales to tell, and most of them are funnier than my last.”

The hug…..was indeed massive, as Jonn was much bigger than her. Jyana is practically enveloped by the embrace, her hands coming up instinctively around his back, surprised at the sudden movement….but her frame relaxes, and she gives her good cousin a warm squeeze. “Rice,” she corrects with a laugh. “Salt is for warding off ill omens.” She pulls back slightly with a smile and pecks him delicately, chastely, on the cheek.

“I look forward to hearing them, as always,” she says, taking a step to the side when he lets go. “Goodnight, Jonn. Sleep well.”

“Rice, right,” says Jonn, “and a merry morning to ye.”

Then he turns and departs swiftly from whence he came—certainly with a different attitude than he began with.