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(IC) Black Dragon Rising

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  • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

    Quinton

    The names Butterwell shares are not foreign to Quinton - they were often the centerpieces of rumors and stories he heard about the encampment. However, they might have as well been the first time he was hearing them as the significance is lost on the young man. He did not know their politics. He did not know their personalities. Most, he could not even describe if asked. As such his face probably displayed a look of bewilderment when the knight spoke of Aegor and Shiera. "Yes, ser..." is about all Quinton is able to manage after the brief historical tidbit on the Great Bastards. Clearing his throat and looking a little unsure of himself, the boy briefly glances over at Ser Timon and Lord Roote as they talk between themselves, as if to see if he was needed or whether the conversation were running smoothly. Looking back to Ser Butterwell, Quinton nods his head and adds, "Thank you for sharing, ser... I never met him personally, but saw him a number of times speaking with his captains. Ser Hobbs thought I should be more concerned with my work and what he would do with me as opposed to Lord Rivers... Ser Ambrose spoke quite highly of him, but nothing about him."

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    • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

      Ser Timon
      Originally posted by Ser heretic View Post
      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 . . .
      "If it is as you say, my lord, then it may indeed be worth taking a closer look at what Lord Piper's been up to recently. But you once helped raise him up to high office. What sort of man would say he is? What does he want most and what does he fear?" Timon fires off his questions as they form in his own mind, all the while racking his brains for any nugget of useful information he can recollect about House Piper and Lord Piper himself.

      Glancing across at Joren the Fox, Timon continues. "That one there may also have some insights to offer. If your maester is done tending to his wounds, we should try and wring the truth from him as quickly as possible. Do I have your leave to interrogate the prisoner, my lord?"

      Knowledge (Education) test: 5d6k4 17 to try and remember something relevant about House Piper and its lord. Used Connections benefit for +1D and spent a DP to add +1B to the roll.

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      • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

        Ser Timon

        Lord Roote prods his bandage. “Well, we needed good men to undo the corruption that had been allowed to fester under King Aegon. I believe we also wanted to counter the swelling numbers of Dornishmen in high office, and ensure that the Conquerer’s Mint would supply itself by way of the Trident, not the Blackwater. Richard Piper was clever enough to serve and had the right loyalties. He was too young to have been taken in by Aegon’s corruption. We also thought the post fit his station and it would serve well in preparation for his lordship over Pinkmaiden, where we need a stiff arm to keep the Westermen in line.” He closes his eyes. “Butterwell may have also had his own reasons, as one does. He always found ways to turn favor for favor.”

        “As for his desires and fears, I do not know the man particularly well, but I think he has a certain distain for some of the, well . . . younger houses that were raised up in last twenty years or so.” For the first time, Roote’s delivery is a bit awkward. You take his meaning well enough, though. “I’m sure you understand; he’s known to make certain comments—little snipes or japes, in certain company.” Your nephew always suspected that lordlings of the older houses made mock of houses like yours while in private. In time, he will understand that such things are not worth dwelling on. “I take it as a sign of his unease in the lord’s chair. Insecure. That’s the word.”

        You know Richard Piper mostly by way of your dealings with his bailiff, a lowborn man named Cleos, though men call him Spillguts. As one might expect, Cleos does not have a delicate touch in his execution of laws or men. You’ve worked together on a small number of matters—preventing bandits from using one Red Fork town as a safe haven to attack another, handling the influx of smallfolk during the Sickness, and patrolling the Red Fork for unsanctioned docks. He once explained that his brutal enforcement of the king’s law was meant to silence the men who would sooner laugh at House Piper’s unmanly banner.

        In the limited interactions you’ve had with Richard Piper, he seemed somewhat vain and status-obsessed. The man is perhaps ten years older than you, on the heavier side, with a headful of tight red curls. He’s always well-dressed and well-spoken, though you’ve found that for all his words, he is no leader when it comes to taking risks. Though House Piper is among the most powerful in the Riverlands, Richard waits to see where the Blackwoods, Brackens, Vances, or Freys fall on any significant issue before taking action. He has three daughters—his heir Cyrenna (married to his nephew Osney), Serra (married to Ser Davos Lothston, heir to that house), and Olenna (unmarried at nineteen), who cuts her hair short like a man and trains with a battle-axe. His wife of Frey died in the Spring.

        You notice Sebaston Frey has returned from his mission to rouse the garrison and seal the town.


        Quinton

        As you speak, a knight in dull plate gains the door of the tower, conferring with Ser Gerold Whent. Ser Tremond takes a couple of steps over to join them. You recognize the new arrival as the mounted knight past whom you and Ferret fled some hours ago. He doesn’t seem to recognize you.

        After a moment or two of conversation, Tremond walks back over to you. “Do you know a knight by the name Mychel Hayford? It seems that he’s been arrested for attacking a singer. He was of the Raven’s Teeth, was he not?”

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        • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

          Quinton

          The name approach of the knight and the shadow he casts over Quinton gives the boy pause. Slowly looking up at Ser Whent as he draws closer, Quinton is visibly nervous - not an uncommon sight for the knight when approaching a lowborn. He seems anxious as to the purpose of the knight's presence in their conversation. And when the questions is asked, there seems to be a mixture of relief and confusion from Quinton. His shoulders droop a little, but his brow furrows as he tries to process the name and the news together. "Ser Mychel?" he asks to make sure he's heard the name right - waiting for some sign of confirmation before continuing any further.

          "Yes, he served in the Raven's Teeth, albeit in another company," the boy eventually confirms. "He..." Quinton starts to say, as if continuing a train of thought, but soon catches himself. Taking a two or three second pause, the lad maneuvers some thoughts around in his mind before continuing. "He's from the Crownland's is he not? What is he doing this far west in Lord Harroway's Town? It does not seem like Ser Mychel to outright attack someone without just cause," Quinton states, seemingly unsure of why the knight might have been arrested for such a crime.

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          • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

            Quinton and Ser Timon

            Ser Sebaston and Whent join Tremond Butterwell and Quinton. Butterwell turns to Whent. "Did you hear that? He is that Hayford. The one with the Raven's Teeth. The boy says it's unlike him to strike a singer." Whent's brow furrows. "A spy, no doubt." The dull-plated knight of Frey breaks in as the group begins walking towards Lord Roote. "He didn't strike him so much as break a finger or two and threaten to cut out his tongue. He said the singer wrought treason by singing about rebels--Fireball or some such. I saw it with mine own eyes and set the men on him. He did not fight back."

            Lord Roote takes this in. "Do not bring him here. He's not being brought here, is he?" "No, my lord. They have him in the yard below." "Good. Thank you, Sebaston. Any news of Lychester?" Sebaston rubs a hand on his stubbly chin. "We found him upstairs in Karl's Inn, but he won't come out unless we explain our cause. He has a brute of a bodyguard with him and they barred the door. I have ten men holding the door and another ten outside in case should he prefer the window." Roote wastes no time. "Well-done, ser. Go and keep him in there until we decide what to do." Sebaston claps a fist to his chest.

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            • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

              Ser Timon

              Timon smiles grimly when he hears of Hayford's activities. "My lord Roote, a source I spoke to earlier tells me that Hayford arrived here today, and that he's busied himself asking questions about rumours of plots against the crown. Apparently he's been far from discreet in his inquiries. I also noticed him watching us earlier as we brought Joren back to the tower. No doubt this night's events have aroused his curiosity. Assaulting the singer may well have been the best idea he could come up with at short notice to ensure being brought to your tower, without arousing undue suspicion from anyone who might in turn have been watching him."

              Glancing over at Quinton, Timon gives him an encouraging smile. "What do you say, Quinton? Does that sound like the Mychel Hayford you remember?"

              Comment


              • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                Quinton

                "A... a spy?" Quinton asks, now confused by the assertion as the men latch on to the confirmation of Ser Mychel. The expression of confusion and worry carries over to Ser Timon when the boy hears his name called. Blinking as he looks up at the older knight, it takes Quinton a second or two to catch on to the smile Ser Timon gives him. When his mind has cleared, the tension in his face disappears as he gives the man a firm and eager nod. "Yes, Ser Timon. That sounds more like the man I knew than what he might be made out to be. There must have been some reason for what he did." Quinton then looks back to the knights who brought the news of Hayworth's arrest, looking a bit more bold and certain in his words. "Not to say breaking a few fingers for treasonous tunes would have been any less a reason," the boy further comments.

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                • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                  Ser Timon

                  Timon chuckles at Quinton's confusion. "Well, perhaps not a spy as such, Quinton, but at least a man looking for trouble of a very specific kind - and now he thinks he may have found it. Which could be very dangerous for all of us, or it may be turned to our advantage. Time will tell, I suppose."

                  "My lord Roote, with your permission, I would move Joren somewhere more private before we begin the interrogation. No need for the whole tower to hear directly what the Fox has to say," Timon says, glancing around at Roote's soldiers and maester.

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                  • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                    Ser Timon and Quinton

                    Lord Roote listens to the conversation before weighing in. “Whatever his purpose in attacking the singer, I will hold Hayford for but a few days at most. A knight enforcing respect for the King by such means is no great crime. Any longer, and he will become suspicious. Any shorter, he might see too much.” Roote waves his arm towards a secluded corner of the tower. “Take the Fox back there with Ser Gerold for questioning. And be quick about it. I will see to it that Hayford is chained up in the brig of one of my river galleys—but we must needs deal with Balon Lychester before his annoyance ripens into something worse.”

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                    • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                      Ser Timon

                      "Indeed, my lord," Timon agrees. "Well Quinton, you'd best grab hold of the end of that table. Let's get Joren tucked away where his caterwauling won't disturb everyone else," he continues with a hollow laugh.

                      With the Fox safely ensconced in the corner of the tower, Timon gets to work. "Well Joren, here we are again. I have some questions that need answers, and I think you have those answers. So you can cooperate, and this conversation will be relatively painless, or you can play the hard man and suffer for it. What's it to be?"

                      Time for some intrigue! And banking on Joren's wounds making this a lot easier than back on the boat!

                      Objective: Information
                      Disposition: Unfriendly (DR: 6, Deception +2, Persuasion -2 due to Authority)
                      Initiative: Initiative: 3d6 9
                      Technique: Bargain
                      Action: Read Target: 6d6k5 24 - this will be Timon's action unless Joren wins initiative and does something really unexpected/worrying...

                      ID: 12
                      Composure: 9

                      Comment


                      • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                        Quinton

                        Dutiful performing the task asked of him, Quinton joins Ser Timon and Ser Joren in the secluded corner. Standing at the end of the table, Quinton does his best to put on a tough and determined face while Ser Timon explains the situation to the captured knight. Ser Joren might not be fearful of Quinton's presence - the boy may have put some arrows into him, but he does not look like the single-minded, certain type to apply the pressure necessary to force desired information. He might do as Ser Timon asks, but he probably doesn't have the grit to think of it himself. In fact, he looks a bit nervous about the whole situation. Is he going to have to do anything? Or will Ser Timon be able to talk the details out of The Fox?

                        Initiative: 1d6 6
                        Last edited by Jewdebega; 16th April 2018, 08:31 AM.

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                        • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                          Ser Timon

                          Joren’s eyes are a bit glazed over due to his condition, but every time he blinks, they refresh for a moment or two as he focuses on you. In those moments, you can see flashes of the character traits that you came to hate in him—a hint of his knowing smirk, and the easy charisma that made him one of Quickfinger’s top men. But at the same time, Joren was always more leader than sneak. He had a gift for recruiting men and orchestrating crime, but when you finally caught him with half a year’s taxes in his saddlebags, he just shrugged and dropped his steel to the ground with an apologetic grin. May it be as easy this time.

                          Joren glances at Ser Gerold and opens with a jape, unsurprisingly. “This poor man thinks he’s a bailiff. Quick, Ser Gerold, o’er to the brig with ‘im!” Ser Gerold glowers back. “Ser Timon is questioning you by leave of Lord Roote. You’ll answer his questions and mine.” “Well, you shouldn’t’ve shot my lungs out, then huh?” He coughs, not entirely for effect.

                          OOC: The initiative order is Timon, then Quinton, then Joren. Your roll succeeds. Joren’s attitude is Unfriendly and his technique is also Read Target.


                          Quinton

                          The Fox looks at you when he complains about getting shot. There’s neither love nor hate in his gaze, just a tiredness mixed with a bit of weird humor. As he speaks to Timon, you can see the bandages that the maester has affixed shift, rise, and fall as he speaks. They're placed on his chest like white blossoms, the jerkin around them carefully sliced away. His leg has likewise been laid bare and strapped with leather bands to a length of pine. He looks as though he could survive his wounds, unless the rot sets in.

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                          • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                            Ser Timon

                            Timon ignores Joren's barbs and begins his questioning. "Let's not beat about the bush, Joren. You and I both know that you're in Lord Harroway's Town to take delivery of an important cargo. Tell me, where were you supposed to take it, and who were you going to deliver it to?"

                            "And before you say something clever, consider this - you know that if Lord Roote turns you over to me your fate is sealed. You'll hang, and that's all there is to it. But if you answer truthfully for once in your life, then perhaps Lord Roote can be convinced not to turn you over to me when I leave his town. And perhaps he'll be more inclined to leniency."

                            Objective: Information
                            Disposition: Unfriendly (DR: 6, Deception +2, Persuasion -2 due to Authority)
                            Technique: Bargain
                            Action: Influence (Bargain): 6d6k5-2 17

                            ID: 12
                            Composure: 9

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                            • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                              Quinton

                              And just as Quinton can see the tiredness in Ser Joren's face so can The Fox see the confusion in Quinton's. The boy looks between Ser Timon and his prisoner, trying to follow along with the conversation, but clearly lost at most of the important points. He has no grudge or quarrel with Ser Joren - the man is simply an enemy because his lord and his representatives have declared him so. The only reason Quinton has for animosity with Ser Joren is his attempt to ambush and perhaps kill him, merely for being in Ser Timon's presence. It's nothing personal - it's just a way of life. The boy keeps his lips closed and his ears open, trying to understand why Ser Joren's presence is so important and, more importantly, what questions and actions his answers will lead to.

                              Comment


                              • Re: (IC) Black Dragon Rising

                                Quinton

                                While you find it difficult to follow the twists and turns of the conversation—there is some mysterious cargo, whose delivery is unknown—you can see Joren slowly breaking down as each of his entreaties is denied by the two knights. There is also some discussion of herbs or spices, though you cannot grasp its significance. You've never known a man to spill blood over a barrel of peppercorns or a block of salt, although you have heard tell that some spices are worth more than their weight in gold. The spice shops in King's Landing always had goldcloaks posted outside.


                                Ser Timon

                                Ser Gerold remains silent after you open the questioning. He likely understands that he’s meant to be the sharp gaoler, while you play the sweet. Joren clears his throat softly, taking care not to disturb his chest too much. “But Timon, what if the cargo was sent by a friend of yours? Would it not be best to avoid such a stitch? You’ve broken up whatever plot passed through your town. Best to be surprised, lest . . . lest, *cough* your honor lead you to some ruinous confrontation.”

                                The identity of the mysterious backer of this plot has always been on your mind. Joren’s argument for ignorance is no good, of course. Roote is wise to the treason and his men cannot be far behind. Any premature retirement from the chase would require perfect trust and coordination, and Roote already made his preference for unmasking the plotters known.

                                After your continued prodding, Joren begins offering up some details. “The destination is Harroway Town. I was to await a poleboat from upriver that would provide us with gold rounds for hammering. The miller’s tin chits were just for practice and fun. But no, there . . . was no destination beyond Harroway. Once we hammered three thousand, I would get my cut and we would be off.”

                                This unnamed backer is absolutely brazen to be minting traitor’s coins in a major crossroads, full of eyes and ears, if not much in the way of garrison. But at the same time, if the mint were discovered, it would place suspicion on Lord Roote above all others. Some part of you wonders if the backer was about to be fleeced as well—placing three thousand unstruck coins in the hands of Quickfinger’s men is not a prudent move, under any circumstance, much less one where objecting to theft would require admitting treason.

                                OOC: Your result is good enough for 3 DOS and 12 Influence, reduced to 6 by Joren’s disposition. After reviewing Joren’s capabilities, I determined that he could not meaningfully influence you, thanks to his wounds. To accelerate the scene, he is conceding the intrigue.

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