... now they must watch their abundance of luxuries fall away, making room for the tools of survival, and witness this time of relative peace wither into the same fears that harper's ballads had warned them about for generations.
 
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 Is it asking too much? Am I tempting fate?

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Eloaene

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Posts : 1703
Join date : 2012-09-20
Age : 33
Location : Texas

PostSubject: Is it asking too much? Am I tempting fate?   Sun Jul 21, 2013 12:14 pm

Rihan didn't know how much longer he'd be handling the issue of the reappearance of the Chorong or Kazage's request to be reinstated. In his father's eyes, the case of Eolyn's kidnapping was closed and the matter of the rebels had become something completely different. The exile Kazage had recently been to visit the Lord Holder in Telgar Hold. His presence there -his existence on the whole- was being kept a secret until anything was decided regarding what would become of him.

Whatever happened though, there was no denying that between Rihan and his family, there was a keen awareness that they owed Kazage a great debt for keeping Eolyn alive during her ordeal. Rihan suspected that Kazage was pleased to be in a position where the Lord Holder owed him a great debt, busily negotiating his fate with Matoi. And Rihan could imagine that the Exile would only continue having his fun so long as they allowed him to remain alive. He felt, more than he had rightful reason to believe, that Kazage was not a person to be completely trusted. The Exile was sly and cunning; Kazage would play them in his hands as long as he could, to garner whatever personal gain he could. That’s what bothered Rihan. Whatever ended up being decided however, Rihan had decided that he wouldn't worry much over what became of Kazage as long as the matter was in his father’s hand. Lord Matoi might be an happily sly and wiley, middle-aged man full of smiles to most eyes, but the Lord Holder was a demon when crossed.For a moment, Rihan wondered how much of that trait he himself had inherited. If his father was a demon when crossed, then Rihan was at least half-demon in that sense.

Without knowing everything that had transpired yet between Kazage and Lord Matoi, Rihan had been left a little in the dark over the specifics, but he got the impression that his father was going to choose to keep Kazage close to him since the man had recent contact with Chorong, and could possibly reveal more about the group. If given what he wanted, Rihan had no doubts that Kazage would mysteriously remember many other details.

From what they’d been told thus far however, the Chorong were making a strong resurgence; that was terribly worrisome for Telgar on the whole. Rihan guessed that Lord Matoi would want to take control of the situation quickly, leaving his son to assist only as far as matters concerning Telgar River Hold were concerned. There was something else in Telgar River Hold however, that his father was already asking for. Something which would offer them some advantage in the case of the Chorong, with or without Kazage’s information; and that resource was Captain Toshiro. That was part of the reason why Rihan had called his Captains to the Amber Room today. Rihan needed to ask for Toshiro’s help. He held the Captain in too high a regard to demand something of him outright -even if he could demand almost anything, granted his position. Rihan’s relationship with the Captain however, was not a typical one.



Rihan stepped up to the meeting table set at the center of the Amber Room where the steward and officers of the guard now stood, awaiting his arrival. Taking his seat, Rihan gestured for the rest of them to be seated as well. Clearing his throat, the Heir Apparent was the first to speak, “Thank you for arriving so promptly, considering I called you all here last minute. There are two matters in need of quick discussion before I let you go. One is the matter of the Exile Kazage, the other is the matter of the group responsible for Eolyn’s kidnapping.”

Shadowy grey orbs met the eyes of each man at the table in turn before Rihan went on. “I’m sure everyone has some memory of the Chorong Rebels involved in the rebellion several turns ago. Right now, we are assuming that this is the same group responsible for Eolyn’s kidnapping. Because our resident Exile is most familiar with their current situation, Lord Matoi has decided to harbour him for a while, either here or Telgar Hold itself. Truthfully, I don’t know yet what will be decided for him, but for now, considering he’s also been involved with the Chorong, my father is handling the situation. It has become a very delicate matter.”

Rihan glanced over at Toshiro then, reluctant to say what he was about to, but with no real choice, he didn’t hesitate. “Captain Toshiro. Regarding the Chorong, Lord Matoi has requested your assistance. There are many others who fought on that front during the rebellion, but you have had some of the most intimate experience with them in the past, of all our Captains. My father would like to ask that you see him in Telgar Hold and work with us again in order to determine what kind of threat they pose.” Taking another breath, Rihan was about to go on, but this time reluctance got the better of him, so he paused there, looking down to the table infront of him.


Rihan and Toshiro had both grown into adulthood during the same era of Telgar's history, but Toshiro's experience had been completely different. Rihan and Toshiro had fallen completely out of touch with one another during the time of the rebellion. Toshiro's duty took him far from Telgar Hold and Rihan was confined to it. Rihan had only heard stories and rumours about Toshiro's whereabouts and actions during that time; sometimes he caught glimpses of his friend's name in Hold records, but that was the extent of their contact for several turns.

Telgar’s Heir Apparent had never asked the Captain to carry on in any detail about what had happened over those turns. He’d read reports submitted by Toshiro and others regarding the goings-on, but to read it and to understand the experience first hand were two completely different things. When Toshiro landed in Telgar River Hold, he was a changed man; very different than the last they’d seen one another. Even since Toshiro’s arrival in Telgar River Hold, he’d changed, but..it wasn’t the same as the kind of change he’d seen in his friend since the start of the rebellion. Rihan had never pressed the Captain to speak with him in any detail over the rebellion on a more personal level. Toshiro never seemed willing. So, it was assumed that he simply preferred things to remain in the past that were past.

Not being able to ask more of his friend, because he understood that Toshiro had made huge sacrifices in the past for the good of Telgar, it was even more difficult for Rihan to bring up the matter of a rusurgence of the Chorong in order to enlist his aid. What Toshiro went through one time, he didn’t want him to have to suffer again. He had to ask though. It would be Toshiro’s decision. By no means did Rihan want to force something like that on the man. Rihan had wanted to have faith though, that the Captain would be willing to help this time, just as he had in the past. There were many reasons he could have for deciding to do so. So, Rihan had to hold on to that faith. Even if the Captain needed time to consider it, they could wait and see.


The Captain spoke after Rihan had refrained from further speech, “If Kazage returns here, I cannot leave. He is too dangerous.”

"My father seems to believe that he is loyal to the blood." Watching Toshiro’s eyes, Rihan offered the words as some small consolation that he wasn’t sure would do the trick.

"Even if he is loyal to the bloodline, that doesn’t mean he won’t serve his interests in a way that’ll put you at the end of his sword. He’s certainly better off biding his time, but we have no guarantees. We know he has people working for him, but we don’t know who or where they are; and we don’t know if they have any connection to the Chorong, or if they’re acting independently.” Pausing there, Captain Toshiro met Rihan’s gaze levelly. “What is it that you believe?"

"That I do not like Kazage.” The answer was immediate and filled with bemusement, “ However, my father is greater than I, so I will continue to be subservient to him and abide by the decisions he makes." No matter how greatly he distrusted the Exile.

Rihan gave pause for a breath, folding his arms over his chest. From his right hand then, his hand fan opened to 'fan' himself. The motion however, was more for the sake of relieving nervous tension. "As our enemy or as our friend, it is better to keep Kazage close. Anyway, my father has not given Kazage an answer as to whether or not the reward he's hoping for shall be fulfilled. Even if he wanted to, he cannot do so yet. I'm sure Kazage also understands that what he's asking for has serious political implications and repercussions; not just for Telgar. Has the Guard learned anything new?"

"About Kazage? Not enough to make any official report. Though, I can tell you one thing for certain," The Captain seemed to sigh in the slight pause that followed, that single breath accompanied by a grim expression, "if he becomes your enemy, were any of us to ever face him in a fight, it is likely that he would be the most difficult foe any of us have ever had to face. He's left handed. And he fights that way."

Immediately understanding the implications of what the Captain was revealing to them, Rihan was taken a bit aback, left nodding in wonder. "When he returns to Telgar River Hold, I need for you to train with him. Find a way to arrange something. In the meantime, go to Telgar to meet with Lord Matoi to get further direction.” Well, that was considering that Toshiro had decided he would help them out this time around.




Funny that the Chorong were the topic of their meeting considering that Toshiro had just been confronted by memories of Kesa and the rebellion earlier in the day while he was with Ariadne. The Captain’s thoughts lingered on his fiance then, wondering just what would become of her if he were to have to leave at a time like this. He would do anything to help rid the Hold of a threat, but the presence of Ari and a baby in his life now, posed a situation far different than at the time of the rebellion. If things went the same as before, he could very well end up stationed far away from Ariadne and their child; for far longer than he would prefer.

"Let Lord Matoi know that I will meet with him. But I cannot promise the kind of involvement he expects of me, this time around."

Expecting that Toshiro would have been thrilled at the chance to continue his vengeful pursuit of the Chorong, even after so many turns of having put them out of memory, Rihan had to admit he was a little surprised at the Captain's answer. Rihan wasn't sure what else there would be to consider. "Given your experience during the rebellion, and your particular set of skills, you are perhaps Telgar's greatest asse-"

Without show of deference, Toshiro cut RIhan's words short. "I know what I am to Telgar. I will consider it." Though the Captain had not raised his voice, that tone was perfectly rigid.

Seeing the memories that shimmered in Toshiro’s eyes as tears might, Rihan breathed the name in question, "Toshiro?" Rihan was left wondering just what had gotten into him.

Reading the question in Rihan's eyes, Toshiro answered, "Just like you, there is a woman in my life now. And she is pregnant. Today I am moving out of the officer's barracks to be with her in our new home."

The fan in Rihan's hand became still, concealing the expression on his face for the briefest moment before he finally brought his arms down, closing the fan within his grasp. Showing understanding, the young lord smile and was happy for his friend. "I see. That certainly changes things. I'm sorry for having been so inconsiderate with my request.” Reluctance was now felt even heavier on Rihan than before. “However,...I still hope that you'll be willing to help. Your expertise will provide us a great advantage which might allow us to dispel the threat very quickly; before anything else happens."

The Captain didn't feel in much a position to argue anything at that point, so remained silent and suddenly a little eager for the meeting to come to a close. Toshiro found himself torn, desiring two things that he was not sure he would be able to choose between; yet, they were two things that he wasn’t sure could be had together. Would it be asking too much for him to marry Ariadne and then ask her to wait for a husband who may never come home? He felt that if he asked for it, fate would find some way of tearing them apart as cruelly as had been the case with Kesa. Still, whatever happened, he would need to think things through before making any decisions; and he would need to have a word with Ariadne about everything, too.

"Is there anything else?"

Rihan shook his head, bringing the fan back up to occupy him. “That is all. My father will be expecting you in three days at Telgar Hold. At least visit him first, and then decide.”

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