Drinks, Discussion & Dangerous Women

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Applo

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#1

  Sinking into her chair, Tamsyn massaged the side of her head with one hand while swilling her goblet with the other and sighed. Why were visits to this damned city never simple. All she had had to do was turn up to tonight's feast and back whatever position the Tarleys wanted her to. After that she could have spent the rest of the time relaxing before setting sail back to Greyshield after a week or so. But now, well she’d barely been in New King’s Landing long enough for everything to stop swaying gently and things were getting complicated. This was one of the reasons Tamsyn preferred Greyshield. Things were straightforward there. For the most part anyway. Her sisters did cause their own brand of chaos for the Lady of Greyshield after all.

Taking another sip of her wine Tamsyn looked over to Visenya. Saree had departed when it had become clear that there were no more questions for him to answer and Lord Baratheon and his guard not long after that. Now Tamsyn found herself alone with a woman she quite admired and had wanted to talk to for sometime. Perhaps this was the Seven’s way of compensating her. Tamsyn wasn’t quite sure of how to break the ice, but hoped that discussing what they had both just learned would be a good choice.

“I imagine the Essosi’s talents could prove quite useful if tonight’s proceedings don’t go as people would like.” Draining her cup, Tamsyn held it aloft momentarily until she caught the eye of a barmaid who was smart enough to realise that prompt service would be prudent and possibly profitable. “And when do such things ever go as everyone would like in our seven kingdoms? I wonder if Master Narett has approached anyone else with his offer?” At that moment Tamsyn had to lean back slightly as the barmaid leaned over to refill her cup from a more ornate looking jug than one typically saw in such hands. When the woman was done, she stood back and looked expectantly at Tamsyn. For her part, Tamsyn looked over to Visenya as she reached for her coin purse. “Can I tempt you to another drink Lady Mormont?"
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DayDreamer

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#2
Visenya had been burning holes on the door where the Essosi mage and Lord Baratheon had exited from, fingers deftly drumming on her shield, currently proped up at her chair's side. The sound of flesh on metal enforced wood made a rather dull sound. Now this was not supposed to happen. Ontop of everything else, the promise of help from Essosi mages and, potentialy, armies would create additional friction between the factions she was certain would clash for the throne despite what her cousin thought of.

“I imagine the Essosi’s talents could prove quite useful if tonight’s proceedings don’t go as people would like.” Her thoughts were interrupted as Lady Grimm spoke up again, clearly not much in the mood after what had just transpired. Her mood mirrored Visenya's own. They both knew that this would be unlikely to end well, without the Essosi meddling in their affairs with such an offer. Her drumming stopped abruptly and she snorted. "When we won the Battle for Dawn. But even then it didn't play exactly as people hoped." She replied to the rhetorical question and downed the remainder of her own cup in one swift go.

She huffed in annoyance. Why people couldn't just mind their own business, tend to their own lands and leave the smallfolk out of it? Wars never were a great profit, or as glorious as they were made to be in songs and books. It was an ugly business, where everybody suffered. Hadn't the Others taught then enough about the value of life? Apparently not. "Of course he will. Even said it himself." She affirmed what Lady Grimm had speculated and looked at the barmaid with a frown. It was not directed at the woman who was, afteral, trying to make a living but to the situation she had been thrown into. Sighing, her expression softened and she raised her hand for the woman to fill her cup one more time, fishing a coin that was more than enough for that one drink and gave it to the woman before she could retreat. "One drink for the road. The news will upset the already delicate balance and I hate being the one to bear them." She said and raised her cup to Lady Grimm before taking a decent gulp from the alcohol.

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Applo

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#3

  “For the road.” Tamsyn’s returned Visenya’s salute and took a mouthful of the rich red liquid, a thought mulling in her mind.

“That the Essosi and his offer will upset the balance of things I have no doubt.” Emerald eyes stared hard into the gently swirling crimson liquid in Tamsyn’s cup. “I must say though, I have never found it an undesirable thing to be the bearer of news. Even ill or unwelcome news. Of course things may well be different for you what with your liege lord being your cousin, but for me… well, my lands are the entirety of a small wind swept rock in the Sunset Sea and my familial connection to the Tarley’s is tenuous at best. Being the bearer of news helps to keep me in my lord's mind. Being the bearer of information such as this makes me look well informed and will win me a little favour. That is good for me personally and by connection Greyshield.”

Placing her cup down on the table, Tamsyn smiled, trying to take the edge off the unintended lecture she had just given someone she greatly admired. Around them trade in the tavern seemed to be picking up. The atmosphere was becoming more louder and boisterous by the moment. For the sake neither of them having to start to raise their voices, Tamsyn shuffled her chair a little closer to that of her companion.

“Perhaps we should discuss other subjects. I must admit I’ve been keen to make your acquaintance for sometime. Women in positions like ours are still quite a rare breed and even then you are something of a stand out my lady.” For a moment Tamsyn’s gaze lingered almost hungrily on the shield at Visenya’s side as the memories of years of fruitless pleading danced through her head. “I’d hate for our first meeting to be dominated by subjects we shall have to talk about more than I suspect either of us care to tonight anyway so if I may; why do you carry your shield with you in the city? For several reasons I struggle to believe you worry about being assaulted and it does rather draw attention to you.”
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#4
Visenya sighed and shook her head. She didn't know how things worked in the Reach, but at the North, she was a lady with no lands. She had people to take care of for sure, but her responsibilities rarely involved tending fully to lands, nor did they require her to make sure her liege lord remembered them. She was lucky both in a historical as well as in an everyday practical sense. She lived in Dragonstone all her life and so did her cousin and lord. No Visenya's concern was not so much how Ned would react to the news, but rather why the things had to become even more complicated than they already were. She had a fairly good idea about how her cousin would take to the news.

She took another generous sip of her wine, this time with an amused smirk as Lady Grimm doubled over on her lecture about bearing news. She had often come across young ladies that seemed to both admire, envy or be bewildered by her choice of 'ladyship'. Only the woman across her was not a young maiden, still trying to figure her place in the world of nobles. No this was something very different. Perhaps it was mutual understanding of having the power that was traditionally associated with men. And the pros and cons that came with it. "I am honored you think so." She said simply with an amused expression as she watched the other lady in breeches scoot closer, taking a longing look at her shield before continuing. Visenya raised an intrigued eyebrow at the following question. This was a new way to make small talk that she had never encountered before. She decided it was worth a shot.

"Believe it or not, it is more of a habbit and the need to be prepared rather than an actual fear of being assaulted. King's Landing is, as of now, the center of all attention and activity for the Seven Kingdoms. It's more crowded than I have ever seen it before. It is bound to have attracted all sorts of people and a shield on your back is a dagger that won't be lodging itself there anytime soon while going about business in the alleys." She grinned and took another sip of her drink. "Also, a shield makes for a more menacing look should vagabonds consider of looking for a fight. Allows me a measure of peace as I roam about the streets without having to glare away or shut down unwanted company." She explained. "You do not see many women in breeches wondering the streets in King's Landing I'm afraid. Trouble is always attracted by the exotic."
 

Applo

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#5

  A thin smile curled across Tamsyn’s mouth at the mention of how few women wore breeches in the city. Ordinarily perhaps that was accurate, but for today at least she had unleashed a small horde of them on the city in the form of her sisters. She was certain there would be some trouble wherever they went. There generally was. Astrid and Talia seemed to specialise in creating it almost as much as she had years ago.

“Perhaps then it would be sensible for me to acquire a shield of my own.” Tamsyn regretted the words almost as soon as they escaped her lips and took a hasty sip of her wine before continuing. “At this point though I imagine it might be better to hire someone to hold it too and rely on something less obvious for my own protection.” As she spoke and without her realising, Tamsyn’s fingers found their way to the spike hanging from her neck.

“I defer to your knowledge on this of course my lady; I’ve only ever enjoyed a few sporadic lesson in sword handling and I can’t say my instructors were entirely focused on teaching me, but I imagine a sword or shield used poorly is as much a danger to one’s self as any foe?”
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DayDreamer

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#6
Visenya rolled her eyes at the mention of a hired sword. "You better trust the man or woman holding the shield for you then. Concealed weapons last only as long as the element of surprise does." She commented and waved her cup around, watching casually the red liquid swirling. "Shields are fundamentally different from swords. A shield protects but can be used as a blunt weapon if need be. A sword is mostly for attack. Piercing and slashing. However, it is hard to get injured from a shield used incompetently.... unlike a sword. I'm sure your instructors at least told you that. I take it you found the way of the sword unfitting of a lady?" She asked curiously.
 

Applo

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#7

  “I always wanted to learn more but that is not what fate wished for me it seems. My father undoubtedly didn’t think it was suitable for a lady. He was a very… traditional man. By his way of thinking, the sharpest thing a woman of noble birth should ever hold is a sewing needle. As for my instructors…” At this moment the stony look that had occupied Tamsyn’s face from the moment she had thought of her father was displaced with a playful smile. “well, they were infrequent and sporadic; knights and the such who were all extremely keen for a lady to toy with their sword for a little while. They never told me much apart from making sure I knew how best to grasp their weapon. They were quite keen on teaching that lesson and less so any others. I suspect someone such as yourself could have taught me far more in far less time.”

Taking another mouthful of wine, Tamsyn’s eyes drifted momentarily to a table behind Visenya’s. Several pairs of eyes stared back at her. It appeared that they were drawing attention, or rather she suspected, Lady Mormont was.

“Of course, fate did compensate me rather better than many. In the Shields at least, it is completely ordinary for a lady to know how to sail a small craft. Or at the very least know how to captain one. Normal enough that even my father was in favour of me being instructed in how to command a ship. A fortuitous state of affairs considering it is now my duty to command our fleet.”
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#8
Visenya laughed at the mention of the instructors "Oh Gods...." She took a moment to suppress her laughter before addressing Tamsyn again. "Knights usualy have a different kind of swordplay in mind when they instruct a lady in handling their weapon." She snorted and finished up her drink. She was unaware of the attention and she had grown used to stares of surprise or disapproval so she had learned to dismiss or not register them at all.

"Never been much of a seafarer myself. I prefer the woods and the hunts. However if you really wish to get some proper training while this summit lasts, come find me at Stars-n-Plough Inn."
 

Applo

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#9

  A sudden snorting sound rang across the table as Tamsyn physically choked on a mouthful of wine at the offer. Hastily wiping her face with the back of her hand, she thanked the seven for the cup in front of her face. It was all that had stopped her accidentally spraying Visenya with wine. “I’d be honoured to take you up on that offer. If nothing else, it would be nice to only have to worry about one type of sword play.” Tamsyn paused for a moment, her mind awash with thought. “I’ll bring a couple of bottles of Arbour red with me shall I? I suspect I might need a little afterward to soothe a few bruises.”

On the table behind Visenya, Tamsyn was aware that the drunkard she had observed before were now openly staring at her and the She-Bear. Every so often one of them would nudge another and whisper before a chorus of coarse laughter would break out. Something about their behaviour that she couldn’t completely put her finger on concerned Tamsyn. Her gut feeling was that they would be trouble. Shifting her gaze away from the table of likely reprobates, she scanned the room, looking over the inn’s other patrons until she met another pair of eyes looking back. A slight smile crept across her face. It was good to know she didn’t employ stupid captains. Reassured, Tamsyn let her focus drift fully back to Visenya.

“I imagine you will be quite popular with my sisters. You could likely charge them a small fee to observe any training. I’m sure Astrid in particular would pay a sizeable amount to watch me get hit by a sword, even a blunted training one.”
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#10
Visenya had an inquisitive look as Lady Grimm seemed to choke on her own wine after, rather casual proposal. A small smirk appeared on her face however. "Your definition of little needs some re-evaluation." She said in a teasing manner. She was not one to talk as she loved her drinking. She twisted her now empty cup and frowned a little as Tamsyn seemed to be somewhat agitated for a moment.

"We shall see. Sparring will not be the first thing we do, unless you really want to have it handed to you." Visenya commented with a mischievous smile before growing serious again. "Is something the matter? You seemed agitated there for a moment."
 

Applo

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#11

  “If he were here, my father would tell you that I never follow the easy path if I can take a more difficult one.” Tamsyn returned the mischievous smile before leaning back for a moment to drain her cup, delicately placing the empty vessel on the table. She deliberately paid no mind to what was going on behind Visenya’s back. “And, after all the disappointing and rather dull lessons I’ve had, I would quite welcome a little physicality. Especially with someone such as yourself. Besides I’m certain a swords woman of your reputation could best a beginner such as myself without giving me too many bruises.”

At this juncture Tamsyn leaned in towards Lady Mormont and continued in a hushed whisper. “As for your question, we or rather I suspect you, are drawing quite a lot of the wrong sort of attention from the table behind us. Individuals whom could reasonably be called drunk and as my old septa would have said, of poor character if I am any judge.” As she spoke, Tamsyn made a deliberate effort to maintain a relaxed smile across her face as if nothing was wrong. “There are a few of my men watching us who will come to our side should things turn unpleasant. All the same, considering the circumstance, it might be for the best if we made a discreet departure.”
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#12
Visenya listened to everything silently and a wicked grin appeared on her face as Tamsyn finished with the sugestion of leaving in a discreet manner. She was beginning to like the Lady Grimm more and more. She was observant, eager and not one to be all female-like as most Lords would define the term. However she was not ready to give the woman a break just yet. "I should've known that's the problem." She commented and her eyes darted to locate at least one of her men successfully. "How prepared are you for trouble? I assure you, your hands will not get dirty. Nor those of your men." She asked her with a confident and crooked smile.
 

Applo

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#13

  A thin auburn eyebrow raised into a high arch at Lady Mormont’s question.

“I am as prepared for trouble as I can be.” Tamsyn smirked and leaned back in her chair slightly as if preparing to take in a show. “If you do need assistance just say. I’m sure my men are keen fo-”

The Lady Grimm was ended of mid-sentence as a deeper, coarser voice cut across her. “Oi blondie, why you wearing that sword. Did your sweetheart give it to ya to hold while he fucks a whore or two?” This drew a chorus of raucous laughter from the other occupants of the speakers table. Emboldened by this show of support, the brown haired individual locked his eyes on Visenya. “Why don’t cha put that nasty thing down, so me an you can find better for you to hold. Don’t worry, my mates here can look after your little friends while we’re gone. She looks like she’d enjoy all their company.”

In the strange way of these things, the other patrons of the tavern who had up to now been so noisy chose this moment to quiet themselves. In the half silence that followed it was possible to here several chairs scraping on the stone floor. At the tables near to Tamsyn and Visenya’s, sober minded individual picked up their drinks and hurriedly began looking for a new seat.

“Well, at least he knows it would be rude to leave me alone.” By this point Tamsyn had turned her chair so that she was facing directly at the drunken man. One arm sat on the table so as to support her head while the other hovered at her neck.
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DayDreamer

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#14
Visenya's grin widened as the men felt bold enough to make a move, even if it was a verbal one. Not the best of the approaches she had had but they were pretty drunk as it was and they screamed lowlife. "Mhh, yes, he was being considerate so I might just return the favor." She said to Tamsyn, who seemed ready to enjoy the show, but was also in a good position to defend herself if need be.

Getting up, she gave the drunk men a charming smile, but the most sober of customers could see the spark in her eyes. "Are you big boys scared my sword is harder than yours?" She chuckled and moved infront of her table, shielding Tamsyn in a sense. "Lucky for you, there is no sweetheart you need to worry about." She placed her hands casually on her sword belt and sized the men up. "Let's see.... How about you a little bet? If you manage to get my sword down, I'll get yours up." She didn't break eye contact from the men and the confident smile on her face did not change one bit, her hand did move to rest casually on her hilt.
 

Applo

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#15

  “You shure are confident lass.” The brown haired, ringleader’s drink hit the table with a dull thud. “Ah like that. Wild fillies always buck the hardest. Makes them much more fun to break.” Slowly the man pulled himself out of his seat and to his feet, where he swayed ever so slightly. “Dun’t worry blondie, I’ll only hurt you as much as ah need to. Wouldn’t want ta ruin that pretty face… too much.” With each word that rolled from the man’s mouth, his tone slid from jovial to outright menacing and when he was done the sound of steel being drawn through a scabbard filled the room.​
Behind Visenya, another noise caught Tamsyn’s attention. She had been waiting for the sound of hastily thrust back chairs and predictably the sight of a drawn sword had elicited it. Snapping her gaze towards the noise she wordless held a hand towards the burly trio of men who had suddenly risen above the rest of the crowd. The smallest of the group met Tamsyn’s gaze for a moment, nodding almost imperceptibly before placing a hand on each of his comrades shoulders.​
Satisfied that her men wouldn’t interrupt Visenya’s fun for now, Tamsyn returned her attention to the tense scene in front of her. The man who thought himself Visenya’s equal was staring at the blonde Mormont, sword held to his side as he waited for her to make a move. For her part Visenya was still standing in the relatively relaxed pose she had struck when she had first challenged the drunk.​
Those moments seemed to last for an age. The tavern as a whole seemed to be holding its breath. And then brown haired man lunged at Visenya with his empty hand, clearly thinking his blade was superfluous to his needs.
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#16
Visenya almost grinned as the man stood up, now clearly pissed at her. "Now, now is that a way to woo a lady?" She asked as the man's sword was drawn when his voice turned menacing. That seemed to spur the man in action and Visenya frowned at his choice of attack. "Tsk. Fool." Her voice was calm and disappointed. She sidestepped out of the man's way, grabbing his extended arm with her left hand and forcibly drawning her sword from its sheath just enough so that the bearshaped pommel would connect harsh with his unprotected gut. The pull on the man's hand towards her and the force of her pommel strike should have been enough to make the man re-evaluate his strategy, if he was still able to stand.

Visenya on her part was quick to take two steps away from the man, hand still on her sword's hilt while the weapon remained sheathed. "Did you seriously think I wear this armor for show? Or did you think that you are so good that you can take on a bear even while drunk?" She asked the browned haired leader, while her gaze wondered over to the rest of his gang with an unamused stare.
 

Applo

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#17

  As Visenya glared at the remaining occupants of the table while their leader wheezed on his knees a small half muffled laugh rang out from behind the blonde bear. In the uneasy silence in the tavern, Tamsyn’s tittering was like a hammer striking an anvil but it was soon joined by less refined laughter and some hammering of fists on tables. Even Visenya’s assailant's friends seemed find the spectacle amusing and one of them called out to him. “Stick to the whores Cedrick, they only give ya a hiding if ya pay em extra too.”

From down on the floor, Cedric looked up at Visenya. His eyes were watery, but there was real fire behind them now. When he stood up his sword was no longer held limply at his side but rather in a position that suggested he intended to use it now. “Ya know what bitch.” There was a slight paused as Cedric wheezed slightly before spitting something onto the floor. “Ah don’t think I’ll worry bout messing that face up anymore, not like am gunna see it while you’re biting the pillow anyhow and before ya think if pulling another cheapshot like miss bear; remember there's six of ma friends sitting right there and all the back up you’ve got is that red haired tart behind ya.”

This final comment pushed Tamsyn into a new round of half muffled laughter. She was quite enjoying the show. The only wrinkles was that her cup was empty. She had thought about waving one of the serving staff over but she doubted any of them wanted to be anywhere near this unpleasantness. She distracted her hands by playing with the marlinspike hanging from her neck while she watched Cedric face off with Visenya, sword in hand, waiting for her to make the first move this time.
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#18
Visenya didn't seem to smile or laugh like their audience did. She was hoping that would be the end of it. She was in no mood to play games anymore. The supposed brief drink and meeting with a fellow noble lady had turned into a flirting of poor taste and skill. The grin that graced her face as she drew her sword when Cedric stood up again, clearly about to get serious for once. "Cedric is it?" She asked rhetorically as she changed her grip and stance from relaxed to focused. "Introductions are in order. My friend is Lady Tamsyn Grimm of Greyshield and I am Visenya Mormont of Bear Island. As for your friends, I hope they are better fighters than you are. At least they were sensible enough to not underestimate a woman decked in full armor, carrying sword and shield." She said and took a testing, yet fast and precise swing of her sword, aiming for the man's right ribcage. She wasn't feeling like teasing him anymore. That had gone out the window the moment the man didn't seem to learn his lesson and instead insisted on the same tactics of blatant overconfidence and severe underestimation of his opponent.

"So you see? Even though it might seem we are outnumbered right now...." Regardless of the man being able to parry her or if she would manage to slash him, Visenya would redirect her blow for a cut on his right foot next, planning to get the man on his knees. "It is really you, who will find yourself biting the dirt in the end." Her voice had grown several tones colder than when she first began to talk. Her expression was stern as her eyes never left her prey and its movements, ready to react accordingly to their little 'dance'.