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(IC) Black Dragon Rising

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  • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

    Quinton

    Quinton gives Ferret a comforting glance as Ser Timon starts to provide direction. It appears the two will be splitting up for the time being and at least Ferret will be able to catch some rest since this whole debacle started. The two young men are running on almost no rest in the past three days, but the adrenaline has certainly kept them moving. When Ser Timon then inquires of Ser Vance allowing him to continue on with him, Quinton then looks anxiously towards Preston Vance, eager to see this 'mission' through and discover the importance of what has brought Ser Timon across his path. There certainly seems to be a great deal of coincidence in the major players they've run across.

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    • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

      Quinton and Ser Timon

      “Aye,” intones Ser Preston Vance. He appears eager to regain the tower, with its comforting drawbridge and high walls.

      Ser Walton clasps a gloved fist to his chest and calls up three men, two of whom stoop for the stretcher-oars and lift Joren from the ground. He hangs low in the fabric, just inches off the ground as the men hold the oars at their waists. His breath continues to labor, and he lays limply in the sling, unable to hold any sort of posture.

      Ferret shuffles off with Johnny and Dorian, who soon find seats aboard Riverfly.

      Your contingent forms up, with Vance and his torch at the head, and the others falling in—the free guardsman carries a lantern high and a shield in his other hand, with a spear across his back and mace at his belt.

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      • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

        Ser Timon

        Timon takes up position alongside the left side of the stretcher. "Lads, keep your eyes peeled and your weapons ready. Joren is one of Quickfinger's lieutenants. It's possible there are more of his henchmen lurking in the dark, and I wouldn't put it past them to try and silence Joren before he makes it to Lord Roote's tower."

        "Captain Longpalm. Stay close to me at all times. If we are attacked and things go badly, make for Riverfly. Ser Walton is an experienced commander and a cool head. He'll keep you and your ship safe. The rest of us will join you there as quick as we can."

        "Ser Preston! We should make haste - the Fox is in a bad way, and he's no use to me dead."
        Last edited by rax; 8th February 2018, 04:45 PM.

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        • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

          Quinton

          The young man accompanying Ser Timon seems a bit on edge. Having been to war, Timon probably knows this look - an eagerness, an anticipation. The adrenaline is no doubt coursing through Quinton's veins as the small group prepares to sally-forth into the night, uncertain of what dangers might lie ahead. But Quinton carries with him a composure of an experienced foot soldier as opposed to a 'green' farmboy picked off the land to serve in his lord's arm. He doesn't have the stone-like composure of a seasoned combatant like Timon, but he doesn't appear to be a liability either.

          Quinton nods his head firmly in acknowledgement of Ser Timon's orders. Unless he's directed elsewhere, he walks a few feet in front of the Leyburn representative: his left hand clutching his bow and a single arrow while his right rests on his club. As they begin their trek, Quinton is at first quiet, his eyes prying the night for shifts in light and shadows as best he can manage with the torchbearer ahead of them. After a while though - either feeling some comfort or trying to deal with his anxiety in his own way - Quinton calls back to Ser Timon, "Forgive me for speaking out of turn, m'lord... but I did not expect to see anyone such as yourself here." Timon can hear the nerves tinged in Quinton's voice - the faintest hint of a tremor or waffling in his tone as the excitement bubbles over. "I doubt you heard of our issues here so quickly, so forgive me for asking, but... what brings us here now?"

          The boy does his best to keep focused on the task at hand and making it safely to the tower, but he seems genuinely interested in the sudden presence of Ser Timon and his accompaniment.

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          • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

            Ser Timon

            Timon keeps his eyes trained on the darkness around him, occasionally glancing down at Joren to check on the bandit's condition. He answers Quinton without breaking his stride, though there's a note of weariness in his voice. "Did you not listen back at the tower? Luck and circumstance brought us here. Had not the murderers and Captain Longpalm here let slip that Joren awaited them in town, we would have sailed back to Reedtown. But an opportunity to capture the Fox and disrupt one of Quickfinger's operations - that's a chance I won't pass up. I had no idea you'd been sent here on House Leyburn's behalf, but that too has turned out to be a stroke of luck, since it helped spook Joren into his rash attack. Now we must keep the Fox alive long enough to find out exactly what's going on here, so concentrate on the job at hand, and we may hope for further enlightenment at Lord Roote's tower."

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            • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

              Ser Timon and Quinton

              The gloom has deepened. After the ambush, every shadow looms a dark attacker; every alleyway full of hidden peril. But no soul dares challenge you as you make your way to up Tower Street. Some onlookers appear, at the doorways and windows. Here, a drunkard pisses against a wall, twisting around to behold the passage of your armed troupe. There, an innkeep pauses with an armful of firewood. Mychel Hayford stands ‘neath the eaves of a tavern, his face lit by lantern-light, taking in your passage with his eyes. They say Lord Bloodraven has a thousand eyes, and one. Two of his thousand overwatch you tonight, if not more.

              Soon enough, you gain the tower. Meryn Templeton stands guard at the step and quickly ushers you inside before raising the drawbridge by counterweighted device.

              Inside, the braziers are alive with flame, brightening the hall. Lord Roote is lying on a table with his leg outstretched, propped up on his elbows. His grey-haired maester is bent over his leg, performing some sort of healing. Bottles, blades, and linen bandages are strewn beside Roote on the table, readily at hand. Ser Tremond Butterwell remains close by his side.

              On the far side of the hall, the captives have been made to sit in the corner, disarmed but unfettered. A shorn-headed man stands over them, cradling a loaded crossbow. He’s clad in simple roughspuns, with the martial bearing of a common soldier.

              Ser Gerold Whent strides across the hall to greet you. “Leyburn, bid your men drag another table over here for the Fox. We’ll have the truth soon enough, likely before Lychester or any other accomplices flee. I’ve ordered Ser Sebaston to muster the garrison and seal the town.” Ser Sebaston Frey is the one household knight who did not attend the dockside sortie.

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              • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                Quinton

                While Traveling...

                "Yes, Ser Timon," Quinton says sheepishly, embarrassed by the knight's reprimand for his seemingly foolish question. "For a moment, I wasn't sure..." he admits, as if wanting to continue with some thought, but then immediately clamming up. Instead, he firms his jaw, trying to pick his spirits back up off the ground and looking ahead of them. He says back to the knight, "It is good you came when you did, Ser Timon. We were quite fortunate."

                At The Tower...

                The young man in Ser Timon's service looks to his master at Ser Gerold's request, showing his willingness to complete the task of fetching a table. With Ser Timon's leave, Quinton would work with any of the Leyburn footmen in their company to grab one of the tables and bring it to a lit area of the hall where Ser Joren could be tended to and inquired upon. In the process, he would stow his bow and quiver against the wall - inaccessible to any of the prisoners, but out of the way from anyone tripping over them or otherwise finding them an obstacle.
                Last edited by Jewdebega; 13th February 2018, 01:39 PM.

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                • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                  Ser Timon
                  Originally posted by Ser heretic View Post
                  Soon enough, you gain the tower. Meryn Templeton stands guard at the step and quickly ushers you inside before raising the drawbridge by counterweighted device.

                  Inside, the braziers are alive with flame, brightening the hall. Lord Roote is lying on a table with his leg outstretched, propped up on his elbows. His grey-haired maester is bent over his leg, performing some sort of healing. Bottles, blades, and linen bandages are strewn beside Roote on the table, readily at hand. Ser Tremond Butterwell remains close by his side.

                  On the far side of the hall, the captives have been made to sit in the corner, disarmed but unfettered. A shorn-headed man stands over them, cradling a loaded crossbow. He’s clad in simple roughspuns, with the martial bearing of a common soldier.

                  Ser Gerold Whent strides across the hall to greet you. “Leyburn, bid your men drag another table over here for the Fox. We’ll have the truth soon enough, likely before Lychester or any other accomplices flee. I’ve ordered Ser Sebaston to muster the garrison and seal the town.” Ser Sebaston Frey is the one household knight who did not attend the dockside sortie.
                  Timon nods his assent to Quinton and another soldier to drag a table into position, then has Joren the Fox deposited on it. "A proper maester and all, Joren. You may yet live long enough to hang," he comments dryly.

                  "My Lord Roote, it's good to see you awake and in good hands. Your health permitting, I would have a private word with you when your maester has finished binding your wounds."

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                  • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                    Quinton

                    Johnny helps you drag the table into place. Soon after, the Fox thereupon, still groaning and breathing heavily. His gaze meets yours and his eye twitches, a hint of anger cutting through his pain and delirium.

                    The maester pulls on a leather mitten and lifts a steel flagon from one of the braziers. You know what will happen next. So does Lord Roote. He leans his head back and looks away. Nevertheless, he screams when the maester pours the boiling wine into his wound. Steam billows forth as the maester sets aside the flagon and hurriedly dabs the leg with a cloth. Once the wound has been dried, the maester begins wrapping the leg in clean linen bandages.

                    As Ser Timon steps up to Lord Roote, Tremond Butterwell steps up beside you. “You shot well back there boy. My lord might have been trampled elsewise. Did your father teach you to shoot like that?”


                    Ser Timon


                    The room cringes as Lord Roote fails to withhold the quavering scream that builds in his throat. It’s over almost as soon as it began, and old Roote lays there shuddering as the maester ties off the last bandage.

                    After you speak your piece, Roote waves off Butterwell and the maester, allowing you to speak privately, if you huddle in and keep your voice low. “What is it?”

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                    • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                      Quinton

                      The boy gives Ser Joren a cautious glare back as he sees the anger in the man's eyes. He 'knows' Ser Joren is fairly injured and cannot harm him, but there is still some fear... some uncertainty... as to what danger could befall him. Ser Joren, after all, had orchestrated the surprise attack on their entourage. Not knowing the man, only bits and pieces of his reputation that Ser Timon has shared, Quinton knows he could be capable of just about anything.

                      Butterwell's question jerks Quinton's attention away from Ser Joren. Looking up at the man, a little startled, Quinton answers hesitantly at first. "Yes ser - a bit at first, for hunting," he responds. "He gave up pretty soon after he felt he couldn't teach me more than I knew already," Quinton then remarks alluding to a natural gift of marksmanship. "I learned the rest in service of Lord Rivers," Quinton finally added, taking in a sharp breath upon the admission and then swallowing it down.

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                      • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                        Ser Timon
                        Originally posted by Ser heretic View Post
                        The room cringes as Lord Roote fails to withhold the quavering scream that builds in his throat. It’s over almost as soon as it began, and old Roote lays there shuddering as the maester ties off the last bandage.

                        After you speak your piece, Roote waves off Butterwell and the maester, allowing you to speak privately, if you huddle in and keep your voice low. “What is it?”
                        Now weary to his bones, Timon grabs a nearby stool and sits down heavily, before leaning in to speak to Lord Roote. "My lord Roote, I thank you for your help in apprehending the Fox, and I am sorry for the wound you received. I shall pray to the Seven for your swift recovery." Weighing his words carefully, he continues. "My lord, when I came to your tower today, I was uncertain of where you stood, but now - please forgive my bluntness - I am at least certain that you are not an enemy of House Leyburn. Perhaps that makes me sound foolish or arrogant, but I believe that when I have finished telling my tale you will understand my concerns."

                        Again, Timon pauses, this time helping himself to a cup of water. "I think you will find what I have to say very interesting, my lord, but I doubt you will thank me for speaking of it when I am done. I have been truthful with you about my reasons for coming here and seeking to capture Joren, but when we captured Riverfly we found more than just the murderers we were pursuing. Hidden in the hold was the reason for the murders they had committed - a mint. A mint to make coins in the likeness of Daemon Blackfyre."

                        "The Longpalm - Riverfly's captain - swears he didn't know what he was transporting, and I believe him. He had been contracted to transport the chests and their escort here, and deliver them to Joren the Fox. When I heard that, I was certain that Quickfinger was behind this, but I am also that he would not undertake such a venture alone. Quickfinger served the Blackfyre cause fifteen years ago, but he is no lover of lost causes. He would not risk his neck unless he believed that he stood to gain mightily from it, and that means he has powerful allies who will protect and reward him for his efforts."

                        "My lord, the King's Hand sees treason everywhere, but now I hold proof of actual treason, and the trail leads to your town. I would not have Lord Bloodraven's gaze fall unfavourably on House Leyburn or House Roote, but I believe that unless we can uncover some of Quickfinger's allies to prove the truth of this conspiracy, then Lord Bloodraven may convince himself that we are the traitors he seeks. Can I count on your help in pursuing this matter?" Having taken the plunge in trusting the old lord, Timon drains the last of the water and awaits Lord Roote's thoughts on the whole affair.

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                        • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                          Ser Timon

                          Old Roote listens carefully as you reveal the true origin of your pursuit. “This is serious indeed, Timon. I had hoped this treason died on Redgrass Field, but I should never have been so foolish. Not with Tyrosh full of hungry exiles and five of the Pretender’s sons still living. Not while they have that damnable sword.” He thinks for a moment. “I agree that we must reveal this conspiracy to Lord Rivers, and we should be careful so as not to draw his wroth upon us. Unhappily, this may require more nuance than meets the eye. For I too have a small secret to share, Timon.”

                          He turns on his side to get a little closer. “The disbandment of the mine own household guard was no accident. My son Dickfred commanded them, and I worried that he plotted against me. My sons are everything a father could want—valorous, strong, cunning. Each one a leader of men. When Lord Mallister called for aid, I decided to send my heir Robar, so that he might win glory for the house and join Lady Joanna’s court at Riverrun, possibly securing a marriage. Robar’s lady wife passed in the Spring. Dick was furious—quarrelsome and worse. I came to see that he envied Robar’s inheritance and coveted Harroway Town for himself. I struck first. Sent him to King’s Landing and disbanded his guard. He’s commanded them for many years, and their loyalty to him is considerable.”

                          “Robar went west with two hundred spears and the good maester here. He’s still out there, helping the Mallisters spring traps on the Ironborn reavers that come ashore. He’s won friends among the commanders: Lords Mallister and Flint—a northerner—as well as a renowned common-knight, Ser Aenar, and Ser Clarence Charlton, the heir to Mistle Hall. It was a risk to send him so far from home—there’s war brewing between Bracken and Blackwood, and Lady Lothston is growing unstable—but Robar has done me proud.”


                          “The trouble is that now Dickfred attends King Aerys’ court every day and they say he’s a favorite of Lord Rivers besides. I fear that he could twist this treason against us, especially if we cannot name the traitors.”


                          Quinton

                          “Ah, I see. Back before Lord Rivers and Lord Hayford before him, my nuncle was Hand of the King. I as half your age back then, serving as his page and cup-bearer. The Raven’s Teeth used to practice out by the Kingswood.” He’s lost in thought for a moment. “Their arrows proved fateful for my house—they saved my cousin in the early fighting . . . and killed my other cousin on the bloody field. Many’s a fortune turned by an archer’s sure hand. Hands like yours.”

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                          • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                            Quinton

                            The boy bows his head to Ser Butterwell, showing he recognizes the sobering details that the knight provides about his family. There were rumors among the Raven's Teeth that Lord Ambrose was replaced due to his willingness to pursue a leg of turkey with more vigor than any of the rebels. Quinton looks hesitant to say anything, but feels compelled to respond - even if to acknowledge the older man. "Thank you, ser," he says in an unsteady tone. "I only hope that they serve my masters and me well..." Quinton adds before his face scrunches slightly. Curiosity seems to grab ahold of him as he asks Ser Butterwell, "So you knew Lord Rivers as a younger man? Before, you know, he lost the eye to his brother?" he furthers asks, hoping to perhaps draw a story out of Ser Butterwell.

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                            • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                              Ser Timon
                              Originally posted by Ser heretic View Post
                              Old Roote listens carefully as you reveal the true origin of your pursuit. “This is serious indeed, Timon. I had hoped this treason died on Redgrass Field, but I should never have been so foolish. Not with Tyrosh full of hungry exiles and five of the Pretender’s sons still living. Not while they have that damnable sword.” He thinks for a moment. “I agree that we must reveal this conspiracy to Lord Rivers, and we should be careful so as not to draw his wroth upon us. Unhappily, this may require more nuance than meets the eye. For I too have a small secret to share, Timon.”

                              He turns on his side to get a little closer. “The disbandment of the mine own household guard was no accident. My son Dickfred commanded them, and I worried that he plotted against me. My sons are everything a father could want—valorous, strong, cunning. Each one a leader of men. When Lord Mallister called for aid, I decided to send my heir Robar, so that he might win glory for the house and join Lady Joanna’s court at Riverrun, possibly securing a marriage. Robar’s lady wife passed in the Spring. Dick was furious—quarrelsome and worse. I came to see that he envied Robar’s inheritance and coveted Harroway Town for himself. I struck first. Sent him to King’s Landing and disbanded his guard. He’s commanded them for many years, and their loyalty to him is considerable.”

                              “Robar went west with two hundred spears and the good maester here. He’s still out there, helping the Mallisters spring traps on the Ironborn reavers that come ashore. He’s won friends among the commanders: Lords Mallister and Flint—a northerner—as well as a renowned common-knight, Ser Aenar, and Ser Clarence Charlton, the heir to Mistle Hall. It was a risk to send him so far from home—there’s war brewing between Bracken and Blackwood, and Lady Lothston is growing unstable—but Robar has done me proud.”


                              “The trouble is that now Dickfred attends King Aerys’ court every day and they say he’s a favorite of Lord Rivers besides. I fear that he could twist this treason against us, especially if we cannot name the traitors.”
                              Timon nods quietly as Roote tells his tale. At least there's a plausible explanation for the state of affairs in town, but surely Lord Roote must see that his position is much weaker for disbanding his garrison. Whatever agreement he has with the scum of this town wasn't enough to keep him safe when he ventured onto the streets.

                              "I am sorry to hear that, my lord. Strife in the family is the worst kind. I hope your son Dickfred will come to his senses and accept his duty as second born. There can be no honour in allowing unbridled ambition to risk bringing one's house to ruin."

                              Returning to the more urgent matter at hand, Timon lays out what he knows and suspects. "I fear I have precious few clues as to the identity of the conspirators. Longpalm picked up the bandits and their mint at Pinkmaiden. He claims he was shown a scroll with Lord Tarbeck's seal and told that it was a commission that would allow him to once again carry bullion in the Westerlands. The scroll wasn't on any of the bandits we caught, so it seems likely that Joren or someone else here in town has it. I strongly doubt it's an actual commission from Lord Tarbeck - he would have to be the fool of the century to so brazenly involve himself in treason - but it may hold some clues as to its true author."

                              "Other than that, my only other current leads are whatever Joren can be made to give up, and the actions of Balon Lychester in this affair. I know that there are rumours that he's had dealings with Quickfinger before, but that he should involve himself in treason makes little sense to me. His family was raised up by the king's father. Why would he risk all that by aligning himself with a pretender?"

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                              • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                                Quinton

                                Butterwell’s eyes go glassy as he reaches backwards in time. “Yes, I remember him from back then. He was perhaps one-and-twenty, already the best archer I have ever seen. His white hair and wine-stained cheek set him apart from the rest, as did his pious talk of 'service to the realm.' He was more cunning than half the lords at court combined, but they never accepted him as they did Daemon and Aegor. King’s Landing was still Aegon the Unworthy’s city, even after he died. They loved feasting and fighting, not matters of justice.”

                                “Brynden’s only true friend at court was King Daeron, who put him on the small council as spymaster and granted him Dark Sister. Outside court, Rivers raised up the cast-offs of King Aegon’s reign as his captains of the Raven’s Teeth. Third sons who had forsworn their inheritance after seeing their fathers trade their sisters to the crown for indulgences. Lords who had refused the last king and seen their titles stripped. Men more like to wither than bloom in corrupt soil.”


                                “There were vices, to be sure. The man was quick to judgment and never ceased arguing. They say he summoned black magicks from books to ensorcel the king, but that was a lie. The king loved his brother is all. Brynden was mad with lust for Shiera Seastar, his own half-sister, and mad with hate for Bittersteel, who desired her as well. Shiera chose Brynden for the nonce, and Aegor turned hard and even more bitter. I still remember the Kingsguard dragging Aegor away from the door to Brynden’s chamber, muttering words that could deafen a holy septon.” He glances toward you. “Some wonder what would have happened if Shiera had chosen Aegor. . . ”


                                Ser Timon

                                Quincy listens and nods tactfully as you offer your sympathies. “Dick will come around before winter. If Lord Rivers bestows him with an office and responsibilities, he may soon see that he can enjoy the esteem of the court without holding his own lands.”

                                “As for our little problem, I agree that the Lychesters owe much and more to the crown. If Balon Lychester is involved, his purpose cannot be to place Daemon the Second on the Iron Throne. I would also be puzzled as to why the conspirators would trust Lychester to assist them. We’ll hear from the dwarf soon, Seven willing.”

                                He thinks for a moment on the topic of the clues regarding the mint’s provenance. “I have no doubt that the Tarbeck seal the captain saw was a forgery. Even if Lord Tarbeck is behind this, he would risk all by placing a genuine instrument in the hands of criminals. I suspect that our shadowy traitors chose this captain precisely because bribing him cost nothing and yet they could not be outbid. Pinkmaiden, however, gives me pause.” He rubs his brow as if massaging it will loosen his wits so that the memories might seep through.

                                “Back in the early days of King Daeron’s reign, Ambrose Butterwell and I had Richard Piper appointed Warden of the Conqueror’s Mint on Claw Isle. I was Lord Tully’s treasurer and Butterwell was Master of Coin, with the power to appoint to such offices. Richard was only heir to Pinkmaiden at the time, and in need of learning on the finer points of stewardship. For the two other royal mints, we sent Sefton Tarly to the Old Mint in White Harbor—we wanted him out of King’s Landing, but I can’t remember why—and kept Tristan Waynwood on at the Stag Mint at Parchments in the Stormlands. When Lord Hayford was appointed Hand after Butterwell, he dispossessed every man who had been raised up by Butterwell, then rode off to Redgrass Field to die. All of that is to say that Lord Richard Piper knows a thing or two about mints.” House Piper followed the Tullys in supporting the crown in the Rebellion. As you recall, they never caught the people minting those Blackfyre coins the last time they showed up . . .

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