Elendor Info

  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

Unbridled concerns

Tags: Barlin,  Brev,  Lorthrain,  Isobel

Short Summary: Word of a fatal horse-sickness comes to Esgaroth
Date (real-life): 2011-05-08
Scene Location: Esgaroth, Stables
Date (in-game): November 3052
Time of Day: Evening

  The LakeTown stable is a long, low building. On the eastern wall is the doors to the stable's feed room. Running along the length of the northern wall are numerous horse stalls. Four spacious loose boxes sit along the western wall, each big enough for two horses to stay in complete comfort.

Obvious exits:

Elawyr of the Farriers' Guild is ready and open for business here!

=-=-=-= Dale-Lands Time and Weather Service =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
Real Time: Sun May 08 15:04:17 2011 MST

Dale-Lands Time:
November of 3052
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Dale-Lands Time and Weather Service =-=-=-=

The autumn evening has long since worn on into night, and chill fingers of wind do their utmost to test the mettle of the newly reroofed stables. Temperamental gusts rattle at the shingles and whistle through hairline cracks in the stable walls.

The winds have not stopped at least one townsdweller from coming here this night, though. The hour may be late, but in the stall furthest from the end a lantern glows, and from within comes the soft murmur of a man's speech, though the language is something other than Common. The speaker, grey-cloaked, and dark-curled, is leaning over the stall door and attempting, with only moderate success, to comb the mane of a rough-coated pony.

     The howling wind goes a great way to disguise the sound of tapping; like wooden cane rapping upon a path (for those accustomed to such noises). It may also, perhaps, smother the sound of heavy breathing, as the owner of said cane struggles onward to the doors of the stables. Beyond that, though, Lord Barlin Karath makes his presence quite clear.

 " Elawyr! Is Amerfal prepared?" He wheezes, his billowing cloak of dark fur falling still as it slips behind the protection of the stable's walls.

     From a corner of the stable, a good distance from the 'carpenter', a gruff women peers. Taller than most men, and indeed of greater breadth, the stern warden of the stable stands beside a slick, black steed of magnificent calibre. One calloused hand clutches at a reign, whilst the other runs a polished grooming brush through its hair. She gives a curt nod.

 " Aye, m'lord. He's ready."

 The Cripple gives a grunt of reply, limping on down the stable. His dark eyes flicker up over Brunni, noticing him for the first time. But, apart from a narrowing of the eyes and a crinkling of the surrounding wrinkles, he does not address him. Haste seems to be upon him.

 " Then I will depart..." He calls, "... This sickness must be seen to."

"Tarry, a moment," requests a oice then, and in thorugh the doors steps another figure; taht of Lorthrain of Girion. The youthful royal strides in more fully then, his brown eyes searching the glom of the stables' interior, and he too appears to take interest in the presence of Brev, though matching Barlin he says naught of it for the present.

Instead his eye returns to the veteran nobleman to add: "Hail, Lord Karath. I know you are in a mood to be about your errands, but stay a moment longer to satisfy a question or two regarding this malady?"

The low mutter of foreign speech ceases abruptly as Barlin make his wants known. The grey-cloaked fellow, who indeed prefers to be known by the name of 'Brunni' about town, whatever his birth name may be, glances round at the limping Karath lord. "Evening, Lord Barlin," he greets in level, singsong Common with a definite foreign lilt to it. "Bit late for a ride, surely? Might fall and break a leg or worse." He pulls a face. Abruptly, though, his gaze flicks from one noble to the other, and he demands sharply, "Who's sick?"

The rough-coated brown pony takes advantage of the distraction to nibble at the man's hair. Clearly the fresh hay in the manger's not all it's cut out to be.

     The crippled lord draws to a sharp halt, leaning on his stick as his wrinkled eyes shoot to the foreign carpenter. They narrow a little further; there are some people who immediately draw his suspicion, and this queer traveller fits smugly among that number. The 'break a leg' comment was not lost on him, but whether it was intended to antagonise or not, the limping lord is unsure.

 " Farrier business, carpenter..." He growls darkly, "... But I would keep an eye on the pony of yours..."

     But then, the voice of Lord Girion is heard behind him, and the old knight peers around. " My time is pressing, Lord Girion. Please, be swift. Our stables are in danger."

"Aye, that they are," nods Lorthrain, a glimmer of concern lingering in his eye, though he chances to smile then upon Brev, bowing his head in greeting. "It is a surprise to find you here at such an hour, Master Brunni. Does business bid you take leave of our Lake-town?"

His voice growing more leaden then, the Girion lord addresses them both: "if the reports are as alarming as they appear, then I would advise against it. And aye, lord Karath," says he to Barlin, "I shall be brief. I merely forgot to ask you in my study: what symptoms have been described?"

The man known as Brunni stiffens suddenly. "That's why I'm here," he responds, frowning. "To keep an eye on him - what's the trouble? Horse thieves? Can sleep here tonight, not having him put at risk- ach, stop it, you oversized piece of dung." The last is seemingly directed to the pony, the tone as warm as the words are insulting, as he moves out of reach. "Nothing left in my pockets worth the having."

He glances at Lorthrain and shakes his head. "Just checking on my property. Hired the beast out, doesn't mean I've forgot him. Symptoms of what?"

[Isobel(#23796)] Isobel Taurdain trots in through the door, softly whistling to herself. Coming inside she appears surprised to see anyone here at this time of night. She hesitates by the door, appearing to listen to what is being said.

     " A sudden madness..." The cripple croaks grumpily as he totters towards his glossy beast, "... As if the strucken by devilry. Bolting, frantic behaviour, wildness beyond any normality. These are the first signs." He reaches the side of his beast, nodding to the masculine female who brushes his silky coat. Reaching up, he accepts the reigns from her. " Once all energy has been expended..." The old lord continues, strapping his stick into a ready made holdster, "... The beast will collapse, and foaming of the mouth will begin. The eyes will roll, and the head flail. This can last for half a day."

     Slowly, he leads the magnificent steed out of its corner. A spirited beast before, it seems suddenly calmed by its master's side; it seems, the sour-faced, lame-legged Guildmaster has a way with horses. Stopping short of Lord Girion, apparently ignoring the foreigner for the moment, he looks at the younger lord darkly. " Then, they fall into a deep sleep, and perish. The sickness lasts from dawn to dusk."

     A high whistling catches his ears, and his eyes flicker past Lord Girion to where isobel lurks idly.

A shudder appears to run through Lorthrain at these words, and his lips wear a grim smile as he nods soberly. "That is an evil spell indeed to be cast upon such noble creatures, be it the work of disease or otherwise. You hardly need my urging, lord, though I offer it anyway: find the cause of this ailment with all haste, I pray you."

Looking then to Brev, his shoulders sagging as he relaxes somewhat, the Girion adds: "Have a care with that property of yours, Master Brunni. We know not where this malady has come from, and so it could well be among those who hired out this beast to you."

The fellow calling himself Brunni reaches out to tug at a snarl in the pony's mane; the latter snorts and stamps and moves back. The man's mouth twitches. "Oi, there. I'm gentler with you than Caoimhe is with me ..." Almost, one would think that he is not listening to Lord Barlin's recitation. Except, that is, that once it has finished he turns to address the crippled Karath lord - or maybe the words are aimed at Elawyr at his side. "Sickness among the beasts, is there? Then I'm taking Mescan out of this place. Not having him stabled with diseased stock." His jaw sets, and then he jerks his chin toward the doorway where Isabel stands. "Looks like I'm not the only one, either," he adds, scowling for all he's worth. "And you needn't blame /me/ for bringing it. Been here over a year - 'sides, this mischief-maker's sound as a river ferry."

[Isobel(#23796)] Isobel's eyes widen, and she takes a step forward. "Sickness in this stable?" she asks of the three men, in a worried manner. "Is it true?"

     The retired knight gives a sour sniff, glancing at Brunni. " We did not blame you, carpenter. No... This sickness has come from the East." A gentle hand strokes the side of his steed's head; and with a gentle whinney, the great beast bends its knees to lower itself. Swinging the stiff leg in an arc, Barlin makes an unorthodox, but certainly effective, mount. Amerfal shakes his head as he rises, its lame master thoroughly planted in the saddle.

     " Take your pony..." He says, eyeing the carpenter once more, "... But I do not think it is in any danger, here. All travel between stables, apart from essential movement, has been halted. I will be the last to ride out of Esgaroth, until this crisis is over."

     The crippled knight then looks to the young Girion, and gives a respectful nod (gruff as it is). " Please, Lord Girion, make sure this is observed at the counsel. The sickness must be contained."

"That it shall be," nods Lorthrain firmly to Barlin, and a further smile graces his lips. It is then his gaze darts to find Isobel, and he nods lightly in greeting. "Lady Taurdain," says he. "How does the evening find you?"

[Isobel(#23796)] "Significantly less well than mere minutes ago, Lord Girion." Isobel replies, returning the greeting in kind. "More pressing - is it true that there is disease amongst these horses?"

Brev grunts at Barlin's words. "And if the sickness is already here?" he asks. "Best I take Mescan here out while I can. Gidon can watch him for a few days, or I ... Damn it! Would happen now the work's finally trickling in." Quite where he thinks to take the pony is unclear; nor does the beast itself seem interested in anything more than the fact that all these Men are disturbing the hour of rest.

He's sufficiently rattled not to even lift at brow at Lorthrain's titling of the unknown woman.

     With a dark look, the Lord of Karath lifts the leather reigns. " If the sickness is already here, master Brunni, then there will be little refuge within this realm." And with a nod to Lorthrain, the cripple strikes the reigns and Amerfal leaps forth; with a whinnie, the mighty steed's muscles tense and spring, spurring him into a gallop.

 As if the Devil bit at his heels, Lord Barlin rode out into the night.

"Aye," agrees the Girion to the Karath ere Barlin departs, but in his wake Lorthrain looks between Brev and Isobel once more. "Lord Karath speaks truly, Master Brunni. These beasts show no sign of illness, so I wager if there is a safe place to house them, then here it is. Fear not; Elawyr will keep an eye on them."

To Isobel then he says: "There is a fever and a sickness that has been reported in Dale, lady, though I would urge us not to panic; it seems contained, alarming as it is."

[Isobel(#23796)] "Is it so.." Isobel mutters, looking down. Then she turns beseeching eyes on the Lord Girion and says, "I will trust your word, my lord. I hope you'll be kind enough to share more details of this when you have them.. well, good evening to you." With that she makes to leave the stables again, apparently so distraught she has forgotten whatever it was she came for.

Brev watches Lord Barlin's wild ride in utter silence, reaching out blindly toward the rough-coated pony as though to assure himself the beast is still there. At Lorthrain's words he gives his head a shake as though to clear it. "By the time one beast shows signs of sickness it'll be too late. With creatures closeted like this, ills spread faster than maggots on a corpse. Though Kiern alone knows what I can do with him ..." The speech trails off as he stares at Mescan (who by now has lost all interest in things and returned to the fresh hay in his manger) moodily. "Don't like leaving my friends in danger," he mutters without turning back to see Isobel's departure.

A sympathetic smile crosses the nobleman's lips then, as he replies: "Fear not, my friend. You stand within the care of the Farriers Guild; naught shall befall your property if aught can be done to stop it."

"Property?" Brev stares blankly at the Girion Lord for a moment, even though he had indeed used that term earlier. He glances from stall to stall, watching Elawyr do her rounds, indeed the picture of quiet competence. "Not like I know much about horses," he admits eventually, rubbing at his cheek. Then he demands roughly, "What of your horses, Lord Girion? Are they staying here? How easily would you replace them?"

"Not easily at all," replies Lorthrain gravely, though he does offer an encouraging nod. "Many of those favoured by the courts of Dale come from the southlands, where the traders of the distant east often supply them in exchange for food. Though I myself shall keep my steeds stabled hither, Master Brunni, if that will serve as a vote of confidence."

Brev grunts at that, turning the comb he'd been using over and over in his hands. "Suppose it does, of sorts," he concedes. "Though like as not to you they're no more than furniture. Back where I come from, horses are rarer than a river of gold would be here. Yon fellow near cost me an arm and a leg." Briefly, the corners of his mouth twitch. "Can't see any of soft lowland steed replacing him, either." He reaches toward Mescan, who responds with a showing of the teeth and an attempt at a nip. Clearly said pony has had enough of being bothered for tonight.

A frown furrows the nobleman's brow at this, ans his eyes meet with Brev's sternly as he replies: "Make no such assumption, Master Brunni," says he with crisp politeness. "My mounts are as dear to me as many of my own household; no soldier would say less, unless he is unfit to wear his uniform. We come from different lands, sir, and while you might prize a horse as a rarity, to men such as I they are companions and friends, often in the direst need."

"Friends," Brev repeats. "Aye." He lifts a chin a little to meet that stern stare. "And you're willing to risk the lives of these ... friends on a gamble that sickness won't spread here?" He appears to be close to capitulation.

"No," answers the other, shaking his head. "I risk it upon the word of Lord Barlin of the Black Arrow, Master of the Farriers Guild, and despite his injuries a finer horseman than one is likely to find east of the Mountains. If any man in this land can speak with authority on such a matter, it is he, and I trust his judgment implicitly."

Brev does not look reassured, but after a while he heaves a long sigh. "Truth be told, I can ill afford to be out of town right now," he admits. "There's the infirmary, and work always breeds work ... Damn." He swallows, glances into the stall to be treated to a view of the pony's back end, and then manages a jerking nod. "Fine. He stays. But if sickness does spread here, I want to be told at once." He sends a glower toward Elawyr. "So's I can check on Mescan. If need be," the pause is almost imperceptible, "I'll be the one to give him the kindness cut." Jaw clenched, he moves toward the exit.

"You have my word you'll be sought as soon as any ill news arises, Master Brunni," replies Lorthrain, his own tone relaxing. "Fare thee well, and share any news you hear in turn?"

Brev lets out a snorted breath. "Little chance word'd come to my ears and miss yours," he mutters sourly. "But aye. Goodnight, Lord Girion." Shoulders hunched, he begins the long trek across the bridge to town (and likely the even longer wait at the gate until someone can be persuaded to open it for him).

Date added: 2011-05-25 07:07:30    Hits: 139
Powered by Sigsiu.NET RSS Feeds