Witches & Wyverns

An RPG gaming forum for friends.


You are not connected. Please login or register

A Perfectly Unremarkable Dinner (Sunrise, Luther)

Go to page : 1, 2, 3  Next

Go down  Message [Page 1 of 3]

When Sunrise gets home she introduces Veshti and Ellowyn... then sits Veshti down and explains everything, including the parts she suspects her mentor will not like. ("Remember the one thing you warned me not to let Luther Rivvers do, i.e. be alone with me? Well, funny story, but when I first arrived...") They discuss various options for moving forward. [OOC: I'll cover some of these in a downtime scene.]

She also explains the ruse of inviting Luther over on her behalf. If Veshti wants be present Sunrise doesn't mind, but would prefer to speak with him alone.

When it's the appropriate time she waits patiently in Veshti's parlor.
View user profile
Luther Rivvers arrives at the appointed time--not a moment before or after--in a carriage which is subdued indeed by the frilly standards of Brilight nobility, but which is starkly secure in contrast; plates of armor have been placed on the exterior and painted black to match the stained wood. The overall effect is streamlined and clean; pleasing to the eye in an efficient, practical way sort of way which causes the actual function to perhaps be overlooked: no arrow could penetrate that armored exterior, nor indeed could many axes.

His dress matches his carriage, to an extent. His clothes are fine and rich, but without much decoration; black cloth lined with silver thread proclaims his money and station without going overboard with jewels or finery. He has dressed for dinner as would be appropriate for a visit to a lady such as Veshti, but there is little of a foppish suitor about him; anyone observing from afar would expect he is here for animated and charming discussion of city politics rather than an assignation. (As Veshti does not 'entertain' lovers under her roof, they would also be right in that assumption.)

Veshti, in contrast, waits with Sunrise in a rich day-robe which is fit for a queen. She manages to look casually done up--not having put herself together for Luther's sake, after all--and regal all at once. Luther greets her with a bow and a kiss over her hand and she exchanges some brief small talk with him in a pointed tone. Her dominance of this sacred space established, she sweeps away to take her dinner in her rooms while Sunrise is allowed to meet with Luther in the private sitting room attached to Sunrise's bedroom suite.

(This choice of placement is perhaps not ideal to Sunrise--given the bedroom literally next door in the adjoining room within the suite--but receiving guests in their private sitting rooms is not unusual or unseemly for the women to do, and it is the best place to avoid being overheard by the staff. No one will come or go to bring more courses in without Sunrise being immediately aware of their entrance. However, Veshti has warned Sunrise that if Luther is inappropriately forward, he will be thrown out on his uncouth buttocks.)
View user profile http://wyverns.forumotion.com
Sunrise hides a smile as she shows him in. "She's... protective," she murmurs. "But as we have no audience, I trust I don't need to worry about any ungentlemanly behavior from you." The corner of her mouth twitches. "Come to think of it, that's - rather amusingly - the exact opposite of the normal way of things."
View user profile
He snorts, amused by the observation. "I do aim to be unconventional."

His eyes take in her apartments with a steady scan, noting the somewhat-pink decor gifted from Alysa during her decorating efforts. "Your rooms are lovely."
View user profile http://wyverns.forumotion.com
"A little frillier than my usual," she observes - if he's the sort to notice such things, she tends to favor clean lines and elegance in her jewelry and attire. "But I like the peach and the old-gold accents. Please, won't you sit down?"

She offers him one of a pair of couches set around a little table, and sinks elegantly into the other. "I do intend to feed you," she informs him. "But I thought we could speak more privately here. Did you want to go first?"
View user profile
He settles into the expensive couch with a sort of distracted approval; it is comfortable and it holds him up from the floor and that is all he seems to care about regarding the rich furniture. "I am willing to, certainly," he says, thinning his lips very slightly and letting a frown crease his brow. "Immeral Xiloscient's missing child: why are the lot of you holding back the key to cracking the Redfang family open?"
View user profile http://wyverns.forumotion.com
"Because the one person who knows how to get in contact with said child thinks it would be dangerous," she responds with a sigh. "I'm not sure I agree, but I'm not in charge of Father Rik and I can't order him to tell us where he is." She meets Luther's gaze. "Are there ways to force the issue? Absolutely. And they would all result in us losing Rik's trust and possibly his cooperation, and right now I'm not willing to do that on the chance that this person might have information we need."

She shrugs. "That might change later. But right now we have other avenues to explore, and Rik believes he can ask him questions without exposing him to danger. I'm willing to try that first. There's always a chance that being patient will even bring Rik around to trusting us more than he does right now. In short, I don't see a benefit in turning an ally hostile before I know for sure that it's necessary."
View user profile
Luther sighs and rubs at his forehead. "Miss Sunr--"

He's interrupted by a knock on the door as servants make their way in, bearing the first courses of the dinner Veshti has ordered. Luther falls silent as wine is poured, a fresh salad is set out, and a delicate flaky fish swimming in a buttery sauce is placed before him. He nods at everything asked by the servers--yes, the food is to his liking, yes, the wine is excellent, thank you--and the servants leave them alone again.

Somewhat calmer, he takes several bites before speaking. "I do not know if you recall, but in Laerdya's office the soldier in your group asked if I could tell him how the Redfang family is organized. The identities of captains in the family, lieutenants, advisors, and so forth. I told him truthfully I do not know. I doubt anyone in Brilight could tell you that information except a Redfang. That does not mean it is not crucial to this mission. On the contrary."

He takes a sip of wine before he continues. "My lack of inside knowledge on the Redfang family does not mean I know nothing whatsoever. We have, after all, had ample time to research what we could while Laerdya was weaving those blasted necklaces and acquiring her pet griffons. I can tell you, for instance, the location of Arnem Redfang's home where she and her son Betreygis live. I can tell you how large the house is--exceedingly so--and how many others live there. Would you care to guess the number?" His eyes are cold flint.
View user profile http://wyverns.forumotion.com
"I would not," she says calmly. "Would you like to tell me?"
View user profile
"The main house--in combination with the houses on each side of it, and on each side of those--is inhabited by at least fifty Redfang adults and easily as many children. I say 'in combination with' because everyone in the family comes and goes as they please at all hours of the day and night."

He spears another bite of fish. "So if your team were hoping to set up a watch and pay attention to who goes in and out..." His voice trails away as he quietly continues his dinner.
View user profile http://wyverns.forumotion.com
"You'd have dozens of people and probably at least six entrances and exits to keep track of," she sighs. "I mean maybe if you hired everyone who ever got kicked out a gambling den for counting cards and found a way for them to all talk to each other you might get useful information out of it, but. And the chance of everyone being out - or even asleep - at the same time is slim."

She sighs and picks up a fork. "And there's kids. So that's a thing."
View user profile
Luther shrugs. "'Crime family' means family," he says in the glum tone of a man who has already examined a puzzle from a dozen angles in his head. "Some of the children are innocent; others are cutpurses and lookouts in training. Some of the women are innocent; others are apt to slit your throat if you look at them wrong. Hell, some of the men are innocent. It's a big extended family of close-knit orcs, and the legitimate business and the organized crime tangle up until it's impossible to guess who knows what."

He sighs. "And I do mean close-knit. You're not going to be able to walk up to the door pretending to be a witness for Pelor and get inside. They're suspicious of outsiders. Orcs have reason to be," he allows grudgingly. "If we knew exactly the right person to snatch off the street for interrogation, we could do that. But as it is, we don't know who knows about the criminal enterprise and who is just a merchant or a mother turning a blind eye to what the rest of the family does."

Taking another sip, he studies her with muted frustration. "Which is why Immeral's son is so important. And while I understand that Laerdya's armor-clad lover has concerns about who is trustworthy, I counter that few in the city can protect the boy better than the Captain of the City Guard and the Commissioner of the Feytower. The paladin has already been murdered once; he must know that stashing the boy--along with two newborn infants--indefinitely is not a long-term solution. The boy must be going out of his mind with worry, not to mention a case of cabin-fever after being in deep hiding for, what, eleven months?"

His scowl deepens. "Oh, and whatever post-pregnancy depression he might have. I'm sure that's helping his state of mind."

[OOC: Email me an Insight check.]
View user profile http://wyverns.forumotion.com
She frowns lightly, watching him. On impulse, she reaches over and places her hand on his. "You're taking this very personally," she says quietly - an observation, not an accusation. "I appreciate the clarification of what type of information you think he can provide. It's helpful. And I agree that Rik may not be making the best decision. I do think he'll come around with a little patience," she adds with a soft smile. "He doesn't know us yet, I get that. But you're right that there are better ways to do this."

She squeezes his hand warmly. "But this is bothering you a lot. May I ask why?"
View user profile
He blinks at her touch, startled enough to frown in real surprise. For a long moment he studies her, as if trying to work out what he's said to prompt this sudden display of compassion. Then he sighs and rubs at the bridge of his nose. "The missing boy is being guarded by an acquaintance of mine," he says, his voice lower than before. "Or... was. I don't know if he's still alive. I hope so. They've both gone missing, along with the twins. By which I mean 'genuinely missing', not 'missing because Immeral can't find them'."
View user profile http://wyverns.forumotion.com
She squeezes his hand again, sympathy in her face. "A close acquaintance? May I ask who? If Rik is insistent on playing go-between, I think it's only fair to load him up with a laundry list of questions; the well-being of your friend should be one of them."
View user profile
Luther can't help but chuckle, but there is no humor in the sound. "Oh, I'm sure he'll be quite concerned for my friend," he deadpans of Rik.

He hesitates for a long moment, then seems to come to a decision. Reaching up to the collar which sits high on his neck, he unbuttons his shirt to halfway down his chest--a complicated process involving numerous small black-pearl buttons set into the expensive silk. When he's made enough progress to provide the clearance he requires, he pulls the cloth away from his heart to show her the tattoo there.

At first she thinks it's a crescent moon, then the handle sinks in and she recognizes the curving blade of the hand-sickle. A farmer's tool, and the symbol of the death-god Nerull. The implement sits in black ink just above his heart, quiet and simple and faintly menacing all at once. He watches her face with detachment, waiting for her to recoil.
View user profile http://wyverns.forumotion.com
She doesn't. Instead she studies it for a long moment, then looks back at his face, her expression soft and odd. "An unusual choice," she says quietly, searching his eyes. "Maybe one day when we know each other better you'll consider telling me about that."

She runs a thumb over the back of his hand, then leans back and picks up her wine glass. "Still, though. Regardless of your friend's religious affiliation, if he's protecting Rik's lover he ought to care. And even if he doesn't he can at least report on his status."

She sips her wine and looks thoughtful. "Do we have a name for this person, by the way? Referring to him as 'Rik's lover' or 'Immeral's son' is quickly becoming cumbersome."
View user profile
He meets her eyes with lingering questions in his depths, surprised and touched by her reaction. Gently, he does his shirt back up and reaches for his own glass of wine. "Immeral's child was born Ellwythorn and his legal first name has not yet been changed," he says with a quiet sigh. "Since running away from his husband, I am given to understand that he has privately come out as a boy and has taken the name Thorn."

"My friend's name is Quivyll Myghym. He is a drow elf and a Nerullian paladin. He came to me some months ago for permission to set aside his temple duties and guard Immeral's boy full-time until headway was made on resolving the problems keeping Thorn in hiding. Quivyll has become very fond of the boy and is worried about not only his safety but his happiness."

Luther levels a dry look at her. "Your tact is boundless, so I probably do not need to urge you to take care in discussing this matter with Templeborn," he deadpans. "He will be angry to know Quivyll has been reporting to me. He was, I gather, already angry at the man for falling in love with the boy."
View user profile http://wyverns.forumotion.com
A notebook is produced during this and names jotted down. At the end her eyebrows raise. "The plot thickens."

Shaking her head, she turns back to her food. "Let's talk about Immeral Xiloscient. You said his council seat is supposed to be for an elf; you'd think, to allay concerns, he'd marry his child off to an elf, so the bloodline would stay elven. But he chose the Redfangs. What does a crime family have to offer him that's worth changing the meaning of his ancestral seat?"
View user profile
Luther nods, picking up his fork again. "I find that strange as well," he admits, frowning over his fish. "Even claiming an orcish child as his own is exceedingly odd. He could have refused to sign the birth paperwork when his wife's byblow came out green; no one would have blamed him in the slightest. His claiming of Ellwythorn as his own when the baby clearly was not lost him a lot of allies in his community; giving that child the Xiloscient name threatened from day one to shift the seat from the elvish people it belongs to."

He shakes his head and sips at his wine. "Granted, he was not at that time in the running for the seat. He was the younger son. Went into soldiering rather than politics; traveled all over the wilds with that poor wife of his and made a name for himself in the border skirmishes against the Carcarel orcs back before the treaty was negotiated. No one expected his older brother to die and for the ancestral seat to slip to Immeral, it was just one of those possibilities that people fret about--until, bam, that's exactly what happened."
View user profile http://wyverns.forumotion.com
She nods along with this. "I don't suppose it was a love-match, Thorn and Betreygis? He wouldn't be the first person to leave a spouse he willingly married. If Immeral wasn't the one who arranged it, that would explain the... unconventionality."
View user profile
Luther shakes his head. "I don't think so. Admittedly, my information comes secondhand through my paladin contact, but my understanding is that the match was arranged and the boy was shuffled down the aisle with an expectation that he submit without a fuss. Furthermore, I very much doubt either Immeral or Betreygis have ever intended for Thorn to take the council seat; I believe his usefulness to Betreygis was as a womb which would provide eligible Redfang heirs who could be properly trained to represent the family's interests."

At this last bit, he hesitates. "There is a problem there," he adds, making a face which suggests a topic he finds distasteful.
View user profile http://wyverns.forumotion.com
She raises an eyebrow and waves a hand for him to continue.
View user profile
"How much has Templeborn actually told you about 'his' children?"
View user profile http://wyverns.forumotion.com
"Not much," she says, shaking her head. "Just that Thorn is the mother of his children." She stops, and gives Luther an exasperated look. "Oh, don't tell me they're actually Betreygis's. How could he prove it, though?"
View user profile

Sponsored content


Back to top  Message [Page 1 of 3]

Go to page : 1, 2, 3  Next

Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum