... 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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 The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless

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LadyPern



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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Tue Nov 06, 2012 5:38 pm

Drien was absorbed with her speech, imaging both the loveliness of living near the ocean and the hardships of having no permanent place for she and her brother. He idly reached to scratch Veil’s back and hind quarter as Flynn caressed the brilliant wedge shaped head. Part of him wished he could be holding and stroking her lovely hand, deeply tanned and well worn as it was. But such a thing would not happen today. One of the reasons he’d inquired as to her whereabouts was to have the opportunity to find her after today.

Looking around quickly to see if their food was on the way, Drien saw the woman he believed to be his Lord’s fiance in the arm of what he could only call a brute. The young steward was on his feet as quickly as Ashflynna, but not to jump into situation as she did. He reached an ineffectual hand out in to stop the girl, but was too late.

He berated himself briefly for being so completely distracted that he’d missed what was happening with Rihan and his lady. Certainly not a physical threat, but Drien did have charge to be aware of his Lord and the people around him. He’d leave the fighting to those who excelled at it, but Drien was normally adroit at knowing what was happening. He was quick at reading people and either stepping in before things escalated, or getting himself (and others) out of the vicinity. It was a trait he’d perfected as a child.

Now the situation was well beyond his talents and the lovely young Flynn had just rushed into the fray. Veil had launched herself as soon as they did and was now winging her way over the crowd, vocalizing with no effect.

Drien’s eyes grew wide when he saw Flynn use her bow as a club and he stepped unconsciously toward her. His eyes tracked her as she headed into the thick of the brawl and engaged with first on man and then another. Something in him realized that he’d never seen a lady attack a man like that, but there were no other woman in the brawl so she had no choice. It wouldn’t hit him until later that the people she fought weren’t those of the hold, but her own ‘holdless’.

Before he’d realized it, he was too close to the melee and was suddenly grabbed and tossed to the side. When pressed, and under controlled circumstances, he could do a barely passable job of self defense and even got off one good swing that connected with the man’s shoulder. He might have been able to hold off the thin man who’d tossed him, grumbling about ‘holders’, except for one thing. The thin man’s buddy: twice the man’s size and taller than Drien himself, caught him by the arms, holding him open to the thin man’s assault.

As soon as he found struggling to be of no use, he squeezed his eyes shut, turning his face away. He knew Veil would return to him, and hoped it would be soon enough to be of some help.
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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Tue Nov 06, 2012 6:18 pm



"Bloody hells," Flynn muttered, seeing Drien's predicament. She kneed the man in front of her with her knee before shoving past him, ignoring the fighting around her and using a convenient table to launch herself towards the man cocking his arm back to deliver a punch to the man's face.

She hit him from the side, knocking the breath out of herself momentarily but more importantly knocking the attacker out of the way. The man staggered to the side, and then there was a flash of gold and Flynn jumped back as there were shrieks and scratches and screams.

As much as she'd love to have spent time admiring Veil's attack, Drien was still being held by the second man. She spun around behind the pair, bringing herself up behind them. Without a moment's hesitation she wrapped her arms around the man's neck, keeping the hold tight until he went limp and fell to the ground.

"Stay put," she commanded Drien once he was free and she had checked him to make sure she was fine. She dropped her bow to the ground with a shocking disregard for it's well being and balled her fists, knocking several of her fellow camp members down. The Igen guard was pouring in, now, and she was just concerned with keeping both herself and Drien free of harm.


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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Tue Nov 06, 2012 6:22 pm


The young Lord of Telgar stood quietly, listening as she reasoned aloud, feeling no need to reply. It was when she continued that he made his quip, arcing a dark brow curiously.

“I am surprised you would risk losing your head. If rumors are to be believed, Rihan is an expert swordsman.”

"Women are one of the few things that men risk losing their heads over. And if such a rumour is true, then perhaps I will one day lose my head and not even know it. An expert swordsman should be able take at least one head cleanly."

When Eolyn spoke again, he pivoted to face her more fully again, though the amused expression did not fall away from him.

“I suppose since Rihan doesn't know, you are safe for now.”

"Safe? For now? Don't tease a man who is destined to die and should be busy preparing his heart for death." Impish grin extant, Rihan changed the subject again, "Why isn't the Heir Apparent here today, anyway? Isn't it his duty to escort his fiance on such an auspicious day?"

Rihan was getting perhaps a little too cocky then as he continued, even if his tone suggested that he meant his words more in good-humoured jest; and mostly at himself! "Though, I suppose it is in the nature of all great and pompous Lords to simply do as they please."


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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Tue Nov 06, 2012 7:54 pm


How could he be so confident about this? He didn’t seem troubled by anything that was troubling her. It was clear that he felt something for her and yet he was perfectly fine with the fact she would be marrying someone else. Her naivety had allowed him to get away with so much more deception than would have been capable otherwise.

Now though she was starting to put some things together. He was a skilled fighter, he carried Telgar colors, he had “people” who were concerned about him and fought for him. He might have called them friends but it sounded more like they were duty bound to him.

She was not dumb although it seemed people assumed she was because of her supposed beauty and love of fashion. Eolyn hated when people thought that about her because she had spent Turns under the tutelage of so many intelligent people. There was no reason for the rumor but it seemed everyone thought she was easily fooled. Even this man whom she increasingly suspected was her fiancé.

Although she could not be sure of this as of yet. Her mind was going over details she might have missed while he spoke. An expert swordsman would know that they should be able to take a man’s head off without the man feeling anything. Someone who had no trainng would not know that. However she had no proof that he wasn’t just one of Rihan’s guards.

He was growing more bold and while he tried to dodge actual answers to her questions. Her face had grown a bit impassive at first, because she had been thinking about things. Now though he had her full attention. “My parents told me he was dealing with construction issues on Telgar River Hold. I should have listened to Courisse though. In his letter he said, with you at the center of the occasion, I will not miss being there. I should have been angry and I was a little upset but I decided the Gather could still be enjoyable.”

Eolyn spoke softly, “My trothed Lord would never have left me on my own at a Gather if he knew I was in danger. I know he wants us to have a good marriage. If you read his letter you would understand. He writes like a poet so that one can see his heart is there. I don’t know of any pompous Lords who can write from their heart the way that Rihan did to me. And they do say that poetry is the food of love.” She looked at him as seriously as she ever had. “A pompous Lord would be more like my brother, who I am certain, is not capable of such poetry.”


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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Tue Nov 06, 2012 9:43 pm

The seconds before the thin man’s fist connected with him seemed like an eternity, every muscle tensed to try and absorb the blow. But instead of the attack he expected, he heard the man scream and Veil’s screech simultaneously.

He opened his eyes in time so see the man go down in a flurry of wings and tail as the little queen made herself known. He also caught a glimpse of green-blue fabric as Flynn spun around behind them. He felt the man who was holding him tremble and then pulled himself away only to turn and watch him fall to the ground.

Belatedly, he called Veil to his shoulder and moved past Flynn, away from the jumble of people. He shot her a look that shouted thank you as loudly as it queried really? The queen on his shoulder was all bristle, hissing at anything that moved. How dare anyone threaten hers.

"Stay put."


Drien had no intention of entering the fracas again and he was relieved to see the Igen guard moving in. He wanted nothing more than to melt away into the background, but instead he straightened himself, his clothing, his shoulder knots, and stepped close enough to Flynn to speak for her if the guard questioned her loyalties.

“I...” he began, but decided to wait until they were safely away from here. For now he scanned the crowd, but not seeing Rihan or Toshiro, he was relieved. He didn’t see Lady Eolyn either. And he gathered his cousin had gotten his fiance out and Toshiro was probably with them, or inconspicuously guarding the path to them.

As the energy streamed out of the tent, like wine from a punctured skin, Drien let out a breath he didn’t realize he was holding. “Can I escort you away from here?” he asked quietly, “it’s the least I can do to repay you for saving my um... face.”
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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Tue Nov 06, 2012 9:51 pm




As Eolyn spoke her mind to him, Rihan's expression gradually melted into one that was nearly awed. No, he never thought she was unintelligent or dim witted. He'd never entertained the thought and the more she spoke, the more she amazed him. Had she really memorized the letter he'd written to her? Had she really been forgiving of him that she would make the best of a gather without him, even if he couldn't be there for her on a day like today?

The woman's expression had become so stern, absolutely set on her belief in him, that he couldn't help but stare. He must have looked rather dumbfounded, even though the expression was mostly held within the depth of his gaze -as usual. Rihan hardly gave her time to finish speaking, interrupting the last of her speech to close the distance between them, embracing her fully against him. With as much strength as he dared, he held her close.

There was only a moment's pause between her finished words and the start of his own, "By Faranth, woman. How is it that I am so thoroughly disarmed by you?" His breath seemed a bit heavier now as he kept her wrapped in his arms, taking a few seconds to collect his own thoughts; albeit, even when those thoughts came out, they seemed to him rather in-eloquently jumbled, "The letter,.. my heart,...you have it memorized?" Rihan exhaled in disbelief, still unwilling to release his hold on her, only now, his head bent to plant a kiss upon the top of her blonde head, inhaling deeply her scent.

Rihan wasted no time on feeble explanations of the days events or all of the many thoughts and feelings that otherwise threatened to overwhelm him. There was no way at this point to make any sense of them. The hold of his arms about her barely loosened, yet he set her back from him enough that he might seek to gaze into her clear blue eyes. As his sensual voice lifted to her once more, it was filled with only the most hopeful longing, "Lady Eolyn, let me ask you,... do you think that a man like me could make you happy? Because I am going to be the next Lord of all Telgar, and to fulfill that destiny, I need you by my side."

Even more than that, he needed this woman, whose heart was so great, to be there to love him and continue believing in him, just as she'd done today! There were so many things that he wanted to express to her. He would... in time...express everything. But for now, he just needed to know that she was willing and happy to live her life along side him.




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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Tue Nov 06, 2012 10:27 pm




Flynn looked back at Drien, a huge grin on her face. Her right eye was already swelling up, and there was blood seeping from her split lip and a cut above her eyes. "Yah, it might be a good idea. Guards don't like me that much as a rule."

She dropped down and grabbed her bow, slinging it back over it shoulder. It was incredibly well made, more so than a typical bow: it had parried knife strikes, after all. She felt a little bit safer with it on her back again. It was then she realized that her fine dress had been torn and ripped in the brawl, and her face fell a little. It had been the nicest thing she'd ever worn, she thought wistfully. No doubt she'd never own another gown so fine.

But her eyes went to Drien and Veil, waiting for her, and a tiny smile tugged at the corner of her mouth. Maybe it was worth it... she had kept the Steward of... Telgar River Hold (she was proud to remember that) safe and hopefully he would relay that information to his Lord.

As she let him lead her out of the tent and away from the ruckus, she let out a little hiss. "My brother," she said, grabbing for his hand. "I need to get him... they aren't going to round everyone up and someone might decide to go after him." Her words were a little frantic now: she couldn't lose him, not like she had lost everyone else.
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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Wed Nov 07, 2012 10:29 am



Toshiro was about to rush to Drien's aid when his daring Gold appeared overhead, raking and clawing and beating his attackers with her wings. Not only that, but the lady in Green also jumped to his aid. Another set of hands in that pile would be too much and the holdless men fell quickly away from Drien.

Moving to Drien's side after the Steward exited the tent, Toshiro continued watching as the Igen guard poured into the tent, gradually calming the situation. Holdless men and whoever else still could be found fighting, were restrained and taken into custody to be dealt with elsewhere so that patrons could return to enjoying the gather.

"Are you alright, Drien?" Briefly, his gaze flickered across Flynn's features, seeing that she was about to go into a panic over her missing brother. I'll go with you, to find your brother. Drien will be fine here, and we don't need the Igen Guard mistakenly taking you into custody." He would let the lady in Green lead the way, as she knew where they might be able to find him. He would have suggested that Drien go find Rihan and his fiance, but figured they might need Drien's voice to vouch for them if he or Flynn were confronted by the Igen Guard.



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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Wed Nov 07, 2012 7:37 pm


While she was speaking she saw him come in close to her and his strong arms wrapped around her crushing her chest to his. Something she had said triggered the sudden move and she found herself at a loss for what to do until he spoke again. Eolyn never thought she would have any effect and certainly not one as strong as this on her betrothed for he must be her betrothed after what had transpired. He was amazed that she would memorize his letter. Before she knew it he was saying what he should have all along.

When he kissed her head she blushed a little simply because no one except her parents had ever kissed her anywhere other than her hand before. She found she enjoyed being held in his arms far more than she should, even if he was her betrothed there were still rules of courtship to be observed although it seemed he would like to throw them all out of a window and do things differently.

She wouldn’t mind that, not really, because she knew he was the perfect husband for her and in no way could she ever doubt that. Her eyes were watching the expressions in his because she had found so much more lay in the depth of gray than any other feature on his body.

Courisse would have been livid. Her parents would certainly have disapproved of this too if they had any say in it. Eolyn had never been one to be angered easily but she had to admit he played this game as if it had no effect on her. The reasons were growing less and less important as she weighed what he was saying to her now against the entire day. “You needn’t ask.”

As if she had not expressed already when she was unsure of whom he was that she did want him near her. She had been rather forward in her actions the entire day, if that wasn't enough proof for him then words would be. “I have been dreaming about this for a long time. You, addressing me face to face.” She allowed herself to feel the intense happiness of him trusting her and asking her what she longed for him to ask. “Rihan, I am yours heart, body, mind and soul.”

And she might have left it at that but she let go of him for a moment, letting her other less happy feelings come to light, “Why did you attempt to deceive me all day?” Her tone was soft almost sad and perhaps more disappointed, because he could have trusted her from the beginning to treat him the same way she had when she didn’t know who he was.

He might not want to answer but she simply could not let it go entirely. She was a forgiving sort so he would not receive anything akin to wrath from her; Eolyn deserved an explanation no matter what he might think.


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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Wed Nov 07, 2012 10:25 pm



Drien felt a great relief when Flynn agreed to let him escort her out. The last thing he wanted was for the guard to think wrongly of her. As his gaze took in her bedraggled state he found himself equally concerned over her obvious (if minor) injuries and bewildered at the excitement she was virtually radiating.

“You’re hurt,” he said, glancing around uselessly for a cloth or some water or a healer. But the bumps didn’t seem to bother her as she retrieved her bow. As she bent down, he realized that he had been distracted by the swollen eye and bloodied lip and now saw that her dress had taken even more of a beating than her face. Dirt and what was probably blood, marred the lovely gown. Several bits were in tatters and other places ripped.

As she recouped the bow and replaced it with her pack she revealed a large hole that wrapped around from the back and up her side, nearly to her heart. Drien was suddenly worried that she might be more injured than previously thought and quickly scanned the area for blood. But there didn’t seem to be any damage other than the dress itself, the gash only revealing soft skin several shades lighter than the deep tan of her arms and face. Not for the first time today, he again found himself staring. The easy curve of side and breast magnetizing him as she stretched to secure her weapon.

When she moved again, suddenly concerned with her brother, he dragged his thoughts back to the present, hoping she hadn’t noticed his indiscretion. Veil chirped loudly and he quickly scanned the area, although he had only seen the lad once from a distance. He was so thoroughly distracted that Toshiro surprised him when he appeared at his side.

"Are you alright?"

Drien nodded, but made a face that told the rest of the story. “Thanks to Flynn,” he added, “and Veil.” Again he nodded when Toshiro volunteered to help her look for her brother. Now that the brawl was over, his talents were useful again and he scanned the area once more, pointing in the direction with the fewest guards to detain them. “You should hurry. I’ll stay until they have things in order.”

"Wait," he called, just as they were about to leave. "Take this," he shrugged out of his coat and moved to place it around her shoulders but was stymied by her pack. "Um..." he handed it to her instead, "I think you might need this," gesturing vaguely to where the dress was torn and trying to keep the heat from his cheeks.


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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Wed Nov 07, 2012 10:28 pm

Rihan


"In a way, maybe I didn't want us to be engaged yet. Most are given the opportunity to engage in a courtship and then fall in love...and then marry, just once in their life. Would you think it was childish of me if all I wanted to do was give us both that chance, looking at each other through eyes of a different perspective for a while? Different than we will have for the rest of our time, even if we do still love each other."

Again, Rihan could have gone into greater detail to express himself more fully concerning the situation, but that typically wasn't his way, and so he held her close to him once more, giving her a gentle squeeze. He as well, had never been so close to a woman, and it excited him to have her near. She was intoxicating to him, and he felt so warm with her against him. Discipline however, ensured that he would step away from her then, putting them at least an arm's length from one another. At that time, it was his turn to turn a more serious expression upon her.

"I had wanted to whisk you away tonight after the feast for a runner ride into nearby countryside to watch a romantic sunset together, but I'm not sure that's possible anymore." Rihan swallowed hard, shamelessly admitting, "I have a lot of self-control, but that control would be tested relentlessly were I to be alone with you. You are so beautiful. Forgive me." In all truth, he'd be hard pressed to make it through one dance with her if it were a slow one; Maybe he'd opt to test their stamina together before the wedding night, on the dance floor to a few fast tempoed dances instead.

Glancing down, he withdrew a soft, blue ribbon where it was folded carefully, the very end of it tied about his signet crest ring. Rihan untied Eolyn's blue ribbon and slid the ring onto his finger, refolding the ribbon and tucking it back under his belt. "This, I think I should keep still. Though I just can't remember where I found it, but it is so delicate and such a pretty shade of blue." When his own silvery gray orbs lifted to meet hers again, they were sparkling with delight in her.


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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Wed Nov 07, 2012 11:56 pm




"Thank you," Flynn said to Toshiro, true thankfulness in her voice. Her stance, the lines in her face, the way her lip trembled... they all pointed to how worried she was for her brother. He was her world, and all she did was for him. It wouldn't be fair, she thought, if something happened to him because she had been trying to find him a home...

Her heart jumped into her throat and she gulped it back down. "He's nine," she said to Toshiro, "short for his age, with blonde hair... he's wearing a tunic that matches my dress. His name's Tashin."

She was ready to spring into action, getting her bearings and figuring the quickest way to get to the stalls she'd seen her brother running towards, when Drien stopped them. She looked at the coat, confused, until she realized how badly her gown was damaged in some areas that were very... revealing. This time she actually blushed, taking the coat. Her fingers brushed against his and her throat went dry, and she had to meet his eyes. "Thank you," she murmured, feeling a rather odd fluttering in her chest when he tried to help her put the coat on. Several precious moments were lost while she figured out to take her backpack off first.

"You'll watch this?" she asked Drien, worry back in her voice. Aside from the little that Tashin carried it contained all their belongings. She pressed the pack into his hands, purposefully touching them again just to feel that strange tightening in her chest again, and made herself turn quickly. "Follow me," she said to Toshiro, having no idea who he was or what his rank was. If he was going to help her find Tashin, though, he was a friend for the moment.

She didn't bother with the carefully planned out pathways, ducking behind stalls and scaling wagons with little problem. She heard Toshiro behind her, even in instances where she was forced to squeeze herself through impossibly small places, and couldn't help but feel impressed at the man's quickness. What remained of her dress was being torn to shreds, and she was extra glad that Drien had thought to give her his coat. Though she would be returning it with a lot of stains. As she slide through a patch of muck she winced. More likely it would be destroyed.

She broke into the center of the wood crafters, where she knew Tashin would be. He was obsessed with wooden dolls recently... it was endearing, and in this case had allowed her to find him rather quickly. Her heart dropped to her feet as she spun around, not seeing him. "Tashin?" she called out, trying to keep panic out of her voice.

"Flynn?" The young boy came out from behind the rather large man who had been blocking him, at a booth practically right next to her. She nearly sobbed with relief when he walked over, and flung herself down on the ground to hug him tightly. "Flynn, you smell, and you're dirty," Tashin said in disgust, trying to worm away from her embrace. "Come on Flynn, you're embarrassing me!"

When she finally let go it was only because she knew Toshiro had to be sick of the scene. "We gotta go kid," she said, grabbing his hand tight. "You're gonna help us, right?" she asked Toshiro. "We can't go back there now. Not after the side I picked in that fight."
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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Thu Nov 08, 2012 11:45 am


Toshiro didn't keep his eyes from appreciating the glimpse of feminine flesh revealed by the cuts in her dress before Drien was considerate enough of her to offer his jacket. Maybe it wasn't exactly proper of him, but Toshiro didn't have to be 'exactly proper', even if he did live by a strong sense of honour. Searching her expression and the places on her face that had begun to swell or bleed, Toshiro waited for her to take the lead.

When Flynn went weaving her way through the gather grounds, he was admittedly impressed with the agility she displayed being able to maneuver through some of the tight spots they did. Though they moved with much haste, Toshiro's eyes searched patrons and periodically did checks to make sure they weren't being trailed by any other drunken holdless that might have escaped the hands of Igen's Guard. There was no sign of danger though, so as they stopped in the area of the Wood-worker's stalls, Toshiro helped her scan the immediate area for a short blonde thing that might be her brother scurrying about.

It was quickly that she'd discovered him, the boy's smart remarks about her appearance making Toshiro smirk lopsidedly. Didn't seem like a bad kid. In any case, when Flynn turned on him to inquire about 'helping' them, he stood, watching her for a moment through the slightly narrow slits of his eyes.

"You're gonna help us, right?"..."We can't go back there now. Not after the side I picked in that fight."

Toshiro looked utterly serious, but in those moments of consideration, he began to understand the situation Flynn and Tashin found themselves in. "You were with those guys that started the fight?" It was obvious by his tone he was a bit suspicious, but seemed to shrug it off since he continued speaking so quickly thereafter, giving her little time for response. "I don't make those kinds of decisions."

After that, he didn't give her request any more heed, and began retracing their steps back to the refreshment tent where Drien awaited their return.


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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Fri Nov 09, 2012 9:05 pm




Flynn's eyes narrowed at Toshiro's retreating back, then grasped Tashin's hand tightly. "Come on," she muttered to the young boy, pulling him along with her as she stalked after the Guard.

"If you're going to abandon us you could at least let me return Steward Drien's coat," she told him frostily. "And you're welcome for knocking that bruiser out, and keeping _your_charge safe." With that final shot she gave Tashin a tug and stomped past Toshiro.

She only paused for a moment when Tashin's smile voice chimed in, "Where are we going Flynn?"

"I'm not sure," she admitted. She'd taken a gamble, that they'd be open minded and grateful enough to ignore the mark on her arm, but that dream was quickly disappearing. But Tashin... "You're going to be safe, don't worry," she said, forcing herself to smile like everything was okay. She had gotten very good at that in recent Turns.

By now they were back where Drien had been left, and she slowed her walk a little. Toshiro was right on her heels, she knew, so she walked to Drien directly. She stepped up next to him, pausing at his side. "Please promise me something," she murmured, loud enough for him to hear but not Tashin. "Whatever happens to me just make sure my little brother is taken care of."

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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Fri Nov 09, 2012 9:34 pm


He had a right to court whatever way he wished to because he would be her Lord and master someday. Did she think his elaborate deceptions had worked? No, not really and she wanted him to understand why it bothered her that he was not up front with her from the beginning. Instead of dwelling on the negative she decided to be agreeable because she did like him and did not want to push him away.

“I understand your perspective.” She said after he explained his desire to be unknown. However it did not mean he understood what he had done to her, the position she had been placed in. Eolyn was not going to push things with him though, not right now. He was being honest with her and they had some time alone together to talk so she wanted to make the best of it.

“Lords rarely marry for love, Rihan. I do not think it is childish to want to have more than what an arranged marriage allows us.” She paused unsure if she should continue, “I have always believed in true love. I believe love can happen so quickly, a single moment can go by and your heart can be irrevocably taken from you. I also believe sometimes love comes after time, a long time of growing with someone.”

Eolyn was not one to hold back on her own emotions, she was a sensitive young woman and her emotions often came into play in her life. “I’ve never been in love but I think this is how it feels at the beginning.”

She felt herself becoming more and more aware of his body close to hers. So when he moved himself from her, she understood. They still needed to act with some propriety. As he explained his need for the distance, she blushed. Eolyn knew what she was about to say was not going to be considered lady-like at all.

“You tempt me as well. There is no man on Pern as handsome as you.” At least not for her. Perhaps if one believed in fate, they were meant for one another. The attraction was undeniable, so much so that she wondered if when the others caught up to them, they would be able to feel it.

Since he brought it up… “I knew you had been to my room. Do not think for a second I do not know where that ribbon came from. It really would have been lovely for my new riding hat but I am glad you have it. I was hoping you took it since you left me such a wonderful letter and gift.”


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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Fri Nov 09, 2012 11:04 pm


As Flynn took her brother by the hand and in a huff of ruffled feathers, blowing her steam off at him as she stomped by, the edges of Toshiro's mouth quirked into a bemused grin. Though he made no reply, he hadn't intended on abandoning them; she had the Steward's jacket and the Steward had her pack. She'd have to return to Drien at some point, and Drien was who he figured she'd naturally approach next about aid. Toshiro'd simply made it clear it wasn't himself who had the right to make the choice to take her in.

Being in no hurry to get back to Drien's side, Toshiro's stride slowed a bit after that, resuming a rather languid pace, hands in his pockets. Arriving back at Drien's side shortly after the woman in Green, the Captain's brow furrowed at Flynn's rushed demand of Drien. His response came so quickly, it must have been apparent that there was some other motivating factor for such strong and immediate insistence, "Drien, I'd suggest taking them to Rihan for him to make that decision. It's not our place to babysit." Toshiro's words weren't issued with any particular tone of hatred; it was simply a statement -even if it was a rather abrupt statement, hopefully making it clear there was not much room for negotiation on that point.

A single brow quirked curiously then, almost as if to test Flynn's response, "Not to mention, she was traveling with those thugs and Rihan might just choose not to agree to taking care of the boy." Though he doubted that was true. "Or I might just kill him before we get that far...which is what I should have done to those comrades of yours when they decided to pick a fight with my Lord." Toshiro knew that his words probably struck several erroneous chords with the woman, but that concerned him very little. In all truth, he would be grinning in slightly twisted amusement if she squirmed at his words any. Flynn, after all, would have no idea how serious he was or wasn't on both accounts and as a Captain of the Guard it was still in him to be suspicious of her. Rihan had never blamed him -and for Toshiro, that was good enough.


===================================================================

“I understand your perspective.”

As soon as the words were out of her mouth, Rihan had his doubts of whether or not his answer had sufficed and likewise, whether or not she would end the topic of discussion at that. Of course, when she spoke, Rihan's expression must have seemed contemplative, listening intently as she poured her feelings out to him in such eloquent vociferation.


“I’ve never been in love but I think this is how it feels at the beginning.”

That sentiment in particular made him happy to hear. And with that, he couldn't help but step just a little closer once more. Though it was ludicrously shameful -had they been in the company of others- the young lord reached out his hand to trace his fingers lightly upon the gentle curve of her neck and shoulder to one side. His heart raced again, and he dared not kiss her just then, for that reason.

Rihan wasn't particularly concerned with what she thought of him giving her such attention at a time like this, but she was his, and he'd never had a woman in his life that he could consider so dear and intimately close to him in all aspects; so he was appreciating her. Just then, he also considered moving up the wedding date. He wanted more of Telgar River Hold to be complete for her arrival, but...there were other...matters...that he seemed more concerned with at the very moment.


“I knew you had been to my room. Do not think for a second I do not know where that ribbon came from. It really would have been lovely for my new riding hat but I am glad you have it. I was hoping you took it since you left me such a wonderful letter and gift.”

The impish grin she was becoming to know characteristic of him returned to his olive features, "Ah, was that your room? I could have sworn there was someone else's bed there. I am glad that it turned out to be yours however, and it will be returned when I have something else of yours to take its place. But I do..think it's so pretty and suits you. One day, I will see that it makes a pretty addition to a new riding hat for you."


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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Sat Nov 10, 2012 8:56 am



In watching his face she learned his feelings. He did not need to say how he felt because her own emotions were mirrored in his gray eyes. Eolyn could not help but think this was the beginning of something wonderful. Something not everyone was able to enjoy in their life. Even as she was thinking about their future he reached out and touched her neck, trailing his fingers down her soft skin, to where it met with her dress and her shoulder. A small shiver ran up her spine at the softness of the touch and sensitivity of the skin there. She did not step away from him, she allowed herself this time when they were alone to take pleasure in his touch and be glad in knowing he wanted her.

However it was very bad of her to do so. She should have slapped him and moved away from him or at the very least fainted from being touched so inappropriately. Her mother would have had her punished for allowing this to happen if she was present but that was it wasn’t it. They had no chaperone and could behave however they wanted. They could push the limits and bounds of their morality as far as they wanted to.

It was also very bad of her to reach out with a small hand and reclaim his hand which had trailed her skin. While she looked at his hand she spoke to him. “Of course it was my room.” She said, putting his palm facing skywards as she traced it with her fingers. His hands were beautiful but then she found every time she looked at one of his features they were beautiful. Perhaps then it was no surprise but no less interesting. “I share a room with Courisse. My parents insist that I have a female companion in my room at nights. This way I should never be accused of being licentious or immoral in any way.” Not that she had given them any reason to be concerned until now.

She may have left out that her lady’s maid accompanied her most of the day too. She was almost never alone, which was how she liked things. Being alone made her nervous and then anxious and finally if alone too long she became scared. And if he thought her innocence was compromised, he could ask Courisse. Her behavior today might suggest she had been touched by men before but in truth she had not. Eolyn could bear scrutiny since she had brought it upon herself. “I hope you know I’m not usually so bold.” She said as she let go of his hand and looked up into his eyes. At least not with men, with Courisse around she had plenty to say and they could sometimes do brazen things when out on rides together but it was nothing like this.


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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Sat Nov 10, 2012 10:13 am


The young lord of Telgar was smiling ever so softly as Eolyn took his hand into her own. Her caress felt sublime on him. If he could ask her to continue touching him, he would tell her to never stop. Allowing her words however, to dampen his sensitivities so that he felt no further inclined to act as boldly as before, Rihan listened well, taking note of the Lady's name that was so important to her. That must have been who she was accompanied by earlier.

"This way I should never be accused of being licentious or immoral in any way.”

The young woman was so innocent to him; it made him even more desirous of her.

“I hope you know I’m not usually so bold.”

Unwilling just yet to let her hand go, he snatched it from the air before it could be returned to her side. He placed her palm gently against his chest above his heart. "As you have placed your trust in me, I will trust in you." At this time, he could not express to her just how much he needed her and needed to be able to trust in her absolutely. Those thoughts were reflected in his stormy gaze, yet no more words became of it...for now.

In fact, as Rihan met Eolyn's crystalline blue stare, he couldn't help but remember the fright he'd seen there earlier. Upon remembering, he grew angry again, but swallowed hard to bury the emotion so that his expression upon her remained unchanged. He never wanted to see her so afraid again. Suddenly he was also very reluctant to return to Telgar anytime soon.

"I wish I could take you with me when I leave here. Since I cannot, it does relieve me somewhat to know that you have a Maid in your company most of the time. I don't ever want to have to see you... as frightened as you were today." Rihan gave a squeeze of her hand where he held it over his own heart, "I will ask to have the wedding date moved today. I want to be married to you as soon as possible. But, while we cannot be together, you will of course, have the leaves of autumn to keep us connected."

Smiling gently upon her, he continued, "And you know...if you're ever afraid, all you have to do is close your eyes and I'll be there, protecting you.




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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Sat Nov 10, 2012 11:51 am

Despite her confidence in him and his promises, when he said he trusted her, relief flooded her for a moment. Her forward behavior had not thrown him off. Then he understood her, he knew she was only this way because it was him and not just any man. Or at least she hoped he did. Her hand was placed on his heart before she could even think to retrieve it. They would need to distance themselves when other people joined them but for now, she was happy to have him hold her hand there, at his chest where she could feel his heart beat.

There was no doubt in her mind that she wanted to marry him. Whenver he was ready she would be ready. Almost whenever...after all, her gown would have to be all set to go before she could be married. The most important gown she would ever wear and it would have to be ready when he wanted to be married. She would make certain her father prepared the weavers for this.

"I will be coming to Telgar with you soon enough. In the meantime I'm sure we will both have things to concern ourselves with, to keep us distracted." She said, although she was pretty sure nothing would eb able to distract her from thinking about him all the time. At first she was not sure what to say about the Holdless man who had grabbed her.

She did eventually find her voice on the subject. "I am sorry to have caused you concern. The man didn't do anything to me, I should not have been so scared." But who knew what the man was going to do? "Forgive me, my brother and his friends would tease me when I was young and I have some residual fear stemming from that. They never meant me any harm but I've always been quite sensitive."

And she was easily frightened now that she had been shaken up a bit. Her brother would know better than to tease her once he knew what had happened at the Gather. Rihan's words however made her smile, "You are not leaving right away though are you?" She tried to hide the sudden fear of him not being there from her eyes and may have half managed it. She felt much better when he was around. Perhaps the vulnerable feeling went away after time. For now though she needed him to stay for at least the rest today. "I mean, I would really love to dance with you this evening."

He wanted to protect her from the world so badly that his words sunk in well. "Thinking of you will give me strength." She said, nodding. Glancing around to be sure no one was coming, she reached up on her toes, using her hand to help her gain some height, and kissed him softly on the lips.


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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Sat Nov 10, 2012 1:43 pm


"I am sorry to have caused you concern. The man didn't do anything to me, I should not have been so scared."

Even as Eolyn was finishing her thoughts to him concerning her experience and concerning her brother's treatment of her, Rihan placed his right hand under her chin so that she continued to meet his gaze as those dual orbs of inclement, thunderous gray, flashed in response. Somehow, the grave look in his eyes did not mar the serenity he wore outwardly, and his voice continued to be tender toward her. He would have her know that he was not a tolerant Lord when it came to certain things, "You shouldn't say such a thing. It was that man who caused me concern. If anything, I trusted you to follow my lead in order to keep you safe. You acted brilliantly, so it was not you who was any trouble.

"Men who cannot control themselves and act with due respect...and be more cautious about who they put their hands on,..."
Rihan paused there, tasting the bitterness in his own words briefly before continuing, "Such men cannot call themselves men, as they are incapable of feeling their shame and thereby incapable of living with honur." Indeed, Rihan despised men who had no shame and who had no honour. For, in Rihan's eyes, any man could be considered a creature of self preservation, holding his own life dear; but only worthy men would hold honour far more dear than their own dear life.

"You are my woman and thereby a part of me. If any should act against you then in truth, they have acted against me. And if any disturb my peace as it was so disturbed today, I will put them down quickly and remind them their place." With a whit of a sigh that parted his lips audibly, he stepped back from her once more, retrieving the fan from the back of his belt where a quaint flick of his wrist opened it to fan himself as a way of releasing the tension he felt over the whole situation. His body angled slightly away from her as if he'd been taken by some other, deeper thought.
"Like that man today...it should take him long enough to regain full use of that arm of his, he'll have plenty of time to consider putting a little more thought into who he touches so freely." It may have been a beautiful thing, the fan, but on closer inspection by Eolyn's eyes, it was not at all dainty by design -certainly different than any of the fans she herself would have ever used. Perhaps even more skillfully than any woman, he wielded it artfully, even when so simply fanning himself. When he spoke again, it was almost in a whisper, "You are so kind-hearted, but you must remember, whether you want to look on them kindly or not, such freedom is not something other men have a right to use on you as they please. Please be careful in the future."


"You are not leaving right away though are you?"..."I mean, I would really love to dance with you this evening."

Soft smile returning, Rihan glanced at her sidelong, the expression in them seeming rather delighted at her mention. He turned to face her fully again then, "I am here until the gather draws to a close. I would never pass up the chance to accompany you for the feast and dancing" Not to mention, he couldn't wait to see her outshine every other woman on the dance floor.

When Eolyn elevated herself up on tip toes to place a kiss upon his lips, it instantly stole the breath from him. At first he was almost afraid to consider returning the kiss, because he wasn't sure how strongly he would respond; but no, he was in control. Inhaling deeply of her scent, he bent his head to meet her lips fully, and ardently, wrapping his arms about her shoulders once again, so that he could pull her into him.

It was with a most mischievous grin that he parted from her lips, teasing her a bit, "I should warn you not to do that again unless you want something more from me than that. Best wait until we're truly alone."


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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Sat Nov 10, 2012 3:34 pm



After a quick juggling with her things, he finally helped her into the coat but not before noticing Toshiro eyes on young lady’s lack of dress. A quick frown crossed his face and he moved to step between Flynn and the captain in an unfounded show of possessiveness. He had no chance to think about the action before she pressed her pack into his hands.

"You'll watch this?"

Drien nodded mutely. He noticed her fingers brushing his and wondered briefly if it was on purpose of not. Either way this was not the time to focus on that, not with her worry over her brother’s safety. It didn’t, however, stop him from watching her hurry away. In fact he stared at the place she disappeared until Veil hissed again, shifting on his shoulder.

With a calming hand on his little queen, Drien turned to address the Igen guard who stood beside him. “Of course I’ll tell you everything I know...”



For the third time, Drien started to leave the vicinity of the tent and decided against it. At this point he wouldn’t be able to find them and would be just as helpful watching to see if young Tashin showed up here as he would be searching.

It surprised him how much he was concerned for the girl and her brother. It had only been a matter of hours and now the worry was marking his face. Veil chirruped, walking across his back, from one shoulder to the other, bringing Drien’s thoughts back to the moment. “Do you think you could find her?” he asked the gold casually, running a knuckle under her chin.

Plans to send out his firelizard were cut short when a rush of green skirts came into view. “Thank Faranth and both moons!” he breathed, not sure if he was more relieved to see her of the lost brother. She stepped up beside him and his heart sank as he assayed her face, her lip was now swollen and the bruising had claimed her eye. It was her word that surprised him.


"Please promise me something," she murmured, loud enough for him to hear but not Tashin. "Whatever happens to me just make sure my little brother is taken care of."

“I...” her brother? “The guards aren’t looking for you.” He’d made sure everything was straightened around on that account. Confused, he turned his gaze on the lad, “What are you...?” Toshiro’s joining them cut off his thought.


"Drien, I'd suggest taking them to Rihan for him to make that decision.
It's not our place to babysit."
"Not to mention, she was traveling with those thugs and Rihan might just
choose not to agree to taking care of the boy."

The rest of the captain’s statement was an obvious jab, though Drien didn’t know the reason. He searched Toshiro’s face and then turned back to Flynn. Truth was, they might not have a place after she’d joined the fight against the men she’d arrived with.

His eyes widened a touch when the next thought struck him. If she and her brother came to Telgar River Hold then she would be always nearby. And he would have the chance to... to... well... to get to know her at the very least. But Toshiro was right, they needed to talk with Rihan.

“The good captain is right,” he said quickly, before Flynn would rise to the man’s barb. He offered his arm to her with a bow, “Let’s find Lord Rihan and once we’re sure he and Lady Eolyn are safe, then we can discuss you need.” And with that he led the way in the direction his cousin had left.

Veil winged her way in front of them and was the first to spot the young Lord and his Lady-to-be wrapped in an embrace. With a happy trill, the little gold swooped down and around the couple. She lighted carefully on Rihan’s shoulder with delight, chittering happily about her discovery as the group approached them.
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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Sat Nov 10, 2012 5:23 pm


Veil's sudden appearance startled him momentarily, but his eyes drifted up to watch her circle about their heads before finally coming to land on his shoulder. As she did so, Rihan's arms fell from around his fiance's shoulders, turning from her to see his Steward and his Captain making their way to him. Both seemed unharmed, but then...there was the woman in Green to consider. As they neared, it was obvious the woman in the company of Drien had taken it on herself to get her hands dirty while the brawl was going on. Rihan's mind lingered on her until another of the little queen's chirrups interrupted his thoughts.

"They have returned." The words rose softly to Eolyn before Rihan's left hand dropped to find and squeeze her hand, leading her to stand directly beside him.

"Good to see you have come away unharmed, cousin. Toshiro." He gave a nod in greeting to both in turn, "And thank you Toshiro, for keeping our path clear." Turning an endearing gaze upon his Lady, Rihan presented her before them for his introduction, "This is my Lady Eolyn, Daughter of Lord Qisbon of Igen, who will be my bride. And Lady Eolyn, meet my cousin Drien, the Steward of Telgar River Hold, which will be your home when we are married. Meet also Toshiro, Captain of the First Squad Division of Telgar's Guard."

The young lord's gentle smile, was given over to his two companions then, and finally he gave the holdless woman his quiet consideration again. "You. I do not know you. I am Rihan, Lord Holder of Telgar River Hold and Heir Apparent of Telgar. It seems that when I left the refreshment tent, you must have risen to the defense of Drien here, with that bow of yours?" Rihan's eyes shifted between his cousin and the woman in green, politely concentrating on not staring through the revealing holes in her dress. Wondering how much truth was in his assumptions of how events played out for them, he figured it must be at least partially the right idea, seeing as how Drien had brought her with him this far.

Without openly inquiring their input, he assumed that one of them would speak up on their own accord to fill him in, but in the mean time, he did what was only cordial of a man in his position: finish introductions of course. All in preparation to thank the woman appropriately if the need arose. Silvery oculars peered into Flynn's own, telling gaze, and when she looked at him, he captured her eyes there, studying them quietly. Perhaps it was a bit unnerving in a way, but when he addressed her, it was in the most pleasant baritone; one that most would have found rather warm and comforting. "Please, state your name, dear lady, and forgive me that my Steward did not think to have you cleaned up before making you walk all this way." His words were not intended to sting Drien nor to make his Steward believe he'd been completely thoughtless, rather, it was his way of humbling them all in the eyes of this lady who he may end up indebted to, when he himself was not there to see to her otherwise.


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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Sat Nov 10, 2012 5:49 pm


His anger at the man was clearer than crystal so Eolyn made no attempt to say anything. He was right, the man should never have touched her. She should not be defending the man either by making this into her fault but she did want him to know she would never be so foolish again.

She did feel horrible about it, especially with his people having to risk their lives for her. So she spoke softly and seriously, “I will always have an escort at Gathers, if you are not with me, from now until I die, I promise you.” Eolyn never wanted to cause him any grief over something foolish she had done, again.

To say she was thrilled might be under-exaggerating; she could not wait to dance with her betrothed in front of everyone. Her father would be keeping a close eye on them but she doubted Rihan would try anything in front of people that could be deemed inappropriate. Course one never knew what she would do, even with her parents around. It might be fun to try to be a little naughty then her father would probably agree to up the wedding date.

The kiss was amazing, she felt as though a jolt of lightening went through her body. Nothing compared to this, she thought as he kissed her back and she was completely carried away. Her arms came up around his neck and she thought she forgot how to breathe. When he broke off from the kiss and spoke her cheeks grew hot and she knew she was blushing red but made no move to step away from him. “I wondered what was so special about kissing. Now I know.” She smiled and as soon as the words were out of her mouth the firelizard appeared and landed on Rihan.

His soft words brought her back to reality. There were people coming to see him, people who had risked their lives defending her. So when Rihan had her stand next to him, she followed his lead. The men and woman who came toward them were not only his people but they would be hers soon too. She was also greatly indebted to all of them, in her own mind, so she paid close attention to them all as they were introduced to her.

With a practiced and deep curtsy she addressed both men as they were introduced to her, “Thank you for all you have done for me and all that you do for my Lord Rihan.” Her voice was kind and sincere, “It is a great honor to meet you both.” She did not address the woman because she had not yet been spoken to by Rihan not because she meant to slight her in any way. She was just as integral to her safety earlier as the men were.

While he addressed the woman in green , Eolyn stood quietly at his side, in support of whatever he was going to say or do. That said, she would speak up if she felt the woman was being treated unfairly after risking her life for them. She almost offered to have her cleaned up before the feast but knew it was not necessary, Rihan would make arrangements for the young woman if he deemed it wise to do so.


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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Sat Nov 10, 2012 10:23 pm



Drien was glad to see Rihan and his lady well and uninjured. He called Veil back to his shoulder and bowed gallantly at the introductions and thanks. “My Lady,” he said to Eolyn, face devout and eyes sincere, “As your Lord’s servant, I am your’s as well. Anything I can do...”

As Rihan addressed Flynn, Drien took a step closer to her side, lending his support. The gentle rebuke reminded him again that his focus had been off before and the steward inclined his head in silent acknowledgement. Then with dignity, and before the young lady had to speak for herself, he reached to take her hand and encourage her to take a small step toward the heir apparent. “Might I introduce Ashflynna, recently of the Shunned. Heir apparent of Telgar, Lord Rihan.”

A pause and then he added, “She did indeed offer her support and her bow to your cause, my Lord.” A wry look quirked his mouth, “Least of all were her efforts on my behalf. As you well know, my talents lie in areas other than physical combat.” He glanced at Toshiro, surely the man would truthfully agree to that, even if he did have his doubts about her.

“As for her state, my Lord,” Drien carefully pulled the jacket a little higher around Flynn’s shoulders, “We will indeed attend to that.” He left a hand gently against her upper back, ironically noticing her breathing at the moment and not his own. “We simply thought it prudent to assure ourselves of your safety before all else.”

With a meaningful look for Flynn, he continued. “There is also a matter that she wishes to discuss with you, Cousin.” The use of the familiar name was not intended as an insult or by any means as a lowering of the heir’s status to his own. It was merely a sign that the matter to be reviewed was of personal importance to the steward and Drien hoped that Lord Rihan would see his way to granting the girl’s request. He did, however, leave the asking to Flynn, knowing that both she and Rihan would want it that way.
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PostSubject: Re: The Beginning of Something New - The Holdless   Sun Nov 11, 2012 2:11 am





"Or I might just kill him before we get that far...which is what I should have done to those comrades of yours when they decided to pick a fight with my Lord.

Flynn's entire body tensed, and her grip on Tashin's arm tightened until the boy whimpered. Her eyes darted, trying to find an exit, but there were too many of Igen's guards nearby. They'd never make it out of the Hold proper, she thought grimly. Instead she settled for glaring darkly at the man and pushing her brother protectively behind her. She didn't say anything, but the look in her eyes clearly said he'd have to get through her first.

“The good captain is right,” he said quickly, before Flynn would rise to the man’s barb. He offered his arm to her with a bow, “Let’s find Lord Rihan and once we’re sure he and Lady Eolyn are safe, then we can discuss you need.” And with that he led the way in the direction his cousin had left.

Somehow Drien's attitude made her relax, and she finally felt like her heart wasn't going to thud right out of her chest. She wasn't exactly excited to meet Lord Rihan, especially with his guard seemingly intent on skinning her. But Drien's offer of his arm wasn't something she could pass up politely, and this was what her goal had been.

She did wish the entire introduction thing had been calmer, though.

So she took his arm, sliding her other hand down to grasp Tashin's tightly. The boy was confused by what was going on, but had caught onto his sister's mood and was just as quiet and alert. Flynn tried to smile reassuringly down at him, but all he did was furrow his brow in concern. After that she tried to keep her head up proudly, ignoring Toshiro and his glances. It was surprisingly easy... Drien's presence at her side was very distracting. She'd never been treated with such courtesy, and had to wonder what this man's angle was.
He seemed too kind to be searching for some sort of exotic servant, nor would he offer his coat or his arm to someone he planned a life of drudgery for. And he had her bag still... he had to realize how little she had. Not to mention he was a Lord's son and a Steward and likely had riches beyond her wildest dreams. What was his interest in her for?

"You. I do not know you. I am Rihan, Lord Holder of Telgar River Hold and Heir Apparent of Telgar. It seems that when I left the refreshment tent, you must have risen to the defense of Drien here, with that bow of yours?"

“Might I introduce Ashflynna, recently of the Shunned. Heir apparent of Telgar, Lord Rihan.”

Flynn didn't care what Drien's angle was when he spoke for her. The introductions and long lists of titles had left her with a dry mouth and a clenched throat. She gave a stiff approximation of a bow... she'd never done so before and wasn't entirely certain if she was doing so correctly. The comments on her appearance didn't help her comfort level. She'd never been more acutely aware of her appearance, and ran a self conscious hand through her tangled mane.

Finally she took her hand off of Drien's arm. This she had to do on her own. She didn't let go of Tashin's hand though. Not until she absolutely had to, she thought. After a hard swallow, she spoke, voice hoarse. "M'Lord Rihan," she said, "m'Lady Eolyn. I beg a moment, that I might find employment in your Hold." The little speech was stilted, obviously rehearsed several times before. Then she took a deep breath, squeezing her brother's hand. "At the very least... please consider taking my brother in. He's unbranded and learns quickly." Tashin tried to protest, but she gave him a sharp look, silencing him immediately. "I apologize for the trouble the others of my... former camp caused, and I'm willing to take whatever punishment I'm due. I... just please don't punish my brother, he's only a child and had nothing to do with any of this." She kept her head held high, even though she wanted to stare at the ground. If she was about to be tossed into jail it wasn't going to be as a groveling slob.
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