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Bridging the divide

Tags: Haruven,  Oriana,  Gloin

Short Summary: Respresentatives of three races meet on Esgaroth's bridge.
Date (real-life): 2013-06-11
Scene Location: Esgaroth bridge
Date (in-game): February 3059
Time of Day: Night
Weather: Clear
Esgaroth Bridge

The large bridge spans the relatively short distance between Esgaroth and the shores of the Long Lake. At the western end of the bridge are the heavy wooden gates, and the sturdy guard houses, at the eastern end, the great portcullis that is the last guardian before the streets of the town, and another pair of guardposts on either side of it. Lanterns mark the span atop poles attached to the sturdy rails on either side, leading the way along the bridge in both directions.

Obvious exits:
East and West


Dale-Lands Time and Weather Service

Real Time: Tue Jun 11 14:49:34 2013 MST

Dale-Lands Time:
Sterday, nighttime on a clear winter's night, February 26 of 3059


Night has fallen and the stars are up. Elves of course are highly attracted to stars, and it's probably only their great distance which prevents the firstborn from buzzing around them like moths fluttering against the panes of a lantern. Nonetheless, the stars seem to have drawn Haruven out here, and he is largely ignoring the last stragglers heading into the town for the night as he rests against the bridge railing, looking out at the stars and the water.

The night has brought out another. One who can often be seen wondering in the dark for reasons that are her own. Seeing the elf Oriana takes pause and looks to the very sky he looks at with a smile. Her steps are light. So light that many have a hard time hearing her but he may hear her easily enough. "It's a lovely night." Comments the Karath as hands bring her winter cloak to a close around her so the chill is held at bay. Thick fur gloves encase her hands and her hood is pulled up yet displays her face and hair under it.

"It is, for all that it is dark." Haruven makes up for this slightly melancholy greeting with a bit of a smile, stepping back from the rail. "You are a welcome sight as always, hiril vuin. Are you returning to the lake-town tonight, or has some business brought you across the bridge after nightfall?"

"As much as it is a pleasure to see you, friend." Oriana replies with a warm smile. "Returning to town, I had some issues to deal with in regard to my horse but they are now settled." The chill doesn't effect her through the weight of her cloak. Gentle steps bring her to stand beside Haru and look out and across the water with her big brown eyes. "I like the night, it is often calm and quiet. A rare moment of peace sometimes." Then those eyes befall the elf. "And what brings you out?"

[Haruven(#15070)] "There are no trees here," Haruven looks at the silhouette of the night-darkened town with some regret, "But the water has a will and a voice of its own, which is a comfort to me, as are the stars. To see the former reflected in the latter is the peace and calm you have mentioned, and of which I found myself in need. Walk with me?" Seeming to suspect she'll agree, the elf's steps turn toward Esgaroth, though his pace is unhurried. "There is trouble afoot of which Karath should be made aware."

"Everything has a voice, does it not? That is, if you listen." Replies Oriana, perhaps that was a lesson learned with her time with the elves. Curious over what this discussion may be the Karath woman gives a quick nod and moves to walk along side Haru. Eyes fill with interest and concern. "Whatever trouble there is, we are here to stop it. Please speak on I wish to know where my hand can help, and whatever dangers may be afoot."

[Haruven(#15070)] "Quite." Haruven seems to approve of Oriana's passing Elves 101, and favors her with a quirk of a smile before he looks ahead and continues along the more serious topic. "Perhaps you have heard rumors of wolves in the north, troubling Erebor and the northernmost settlements of the Dale Lands," he begins. "As the Bardings, their livestock, and their dwarves neighbors can attest to, it is no rumor. Amon Thranduil sent scouts to investigate, hunters who recently returned at the loss of one of their horses. We believe the wolves to have come south from the Grey Mountains, settled in a sizable pack-den from which they are launching their hunts against the Dale-Lands and the Lonely Mountain. They are wicked creatures making steady progress to the south, and it is the opinion of the Elves that the wolves should be exterminated before they cause further injury or infest and worsen the existing chaos of Mirkwood."

Perhaps Haruven is not the only one who wishes to see the stars and to be away from the cramped confines of human dwellings (why do beings so tall persist in cramming themselves into such narrow little boxes?). Emerging from the Gate Archway is a short, stumpy figure, well bundled up in a thick grey cloak with a trim of ermine, with an unlit pipe stuck in his mouth. Gloin pauses in the lee of the archway to strike a flint: once, twice and the pipe is aglow. Soon the aromatic scent of faraway Longbottom Leaf fills the air and the Dwarf puffs contentedly.

Only then does his gaze go to those other figures the bridge. On recognition of the species of that taller, willowy figure Gloin sucks his breath in sharply and then succumbs to a fit of coughing.

Oriana cannot help but look confused over this news. Wolves, causing so much damange? Blinking a few times the young Karath woman inhails quickly and settles any nerves with that breaths slow release. Looking to Haru a seriousness seems to of taken over her big brown eyes. "Are they truly wolves? Or could they then be something worse? How big is the pack? I have come across such before, with my time with the Beornings. And it startles me to think that elves man nor dwarf can handle them." She sighs and rubs the side of her head with a thickly gloved hand. "Either way, my assistance and that of my house is offered out to any who need it, of course. But I must have more details."

Hearing the coughing she looks over to Gloin giving the short bearded man a nod in greeting and a look of concern. "Are you okay?"

[Haruven(#15070)] "Gloin son of Groin," Haruven greets mildly as the path he walks with Oriana takes them within conversational distance of the dwarf. Manbedder is talking to the Son of Groin, where is Louse when you need her?! Haru spends a few seconds contemplatively observing whether or not Gloin is going to choke on his smoke and expire suddenly at their feet, but when this fails to occur, he continues. "Word has been sent to your Embassy regarding the matter of the wolves, but as we have a representative of the noble house of Karath among us," he nods at Oriana, "Perhaps this encounter is fortunate."

As to the Oriana's questions, Haru arches a brow and smiles, though the expression is a dry sort of amusement. "They are not wargs," he confirms. "They are only wolves... as the spiders in the forest are only spiders. It is not the intrinsic nature of the foe which is difficult."

The old Dwarf's features crease at Oriana's question; however, once he's recovered his breath he summons up an answer: "Quite all right. The sudden chill of the night air ..." One thick hand waves the pipe about absently. "Thank you for your concern, Lady." He offers Oriana a stiff half-bow (it would be hard to attempt a full one without risk of muddying his immaculate beard!).

The Elf's greeting is matched by a neutral-sounding, "Haruven of the Woodland Realm," and an even stiffer and shallower bending at the waist. He can't disguise his interest as the diplomat's words continue: he leans forward, puffing thoughtfully on his pipe. There's a glint of curiosity in his blue eyes as he lifts them to regard Oriana again. "Karath? The Folk of the Mountain have many friends in that House. I don't believe we've met?"

Curiosity is eclipsed by defensiveness, however, at the final statement. "Let it not be said that any Dwarf fears a mere wolf!" he declares gruffly, drawing himself up to his full height. "My kin will kill any we can get our hands on. The problem is," here he fixes Haruven with a forbidding look, "that the wretched vermin flee, then skulk beyond our borders to return later. Cowards!"

He takes another draw on his pipe to calm himself (or just maybe to blot out the image of 'just spiders').

Observing the dwarf Oriana takes a minute to look at Haru and nods with a sigh of relief. "Wargs would mean bad business." Says the Karath woman with a frown. "It is lucky our paths crossed, I'll do all I can. But if these wolves are causing so much trouble than something might be stirring them up as well, perhaps that is a source to be looked into at a later time." Then the mention of the spiders causes her to visibally shudder. The woman has never met one, but the stories have been endless. Once more she regards Glion and gives a kind smile.

"I am glad you are fine." To his bow she bows her head in return. "I am Lady Oriana Karath, Steward of house Karath. It is a pleasure to meet you for it is rare these days it seems to mee such a friend." There is a sigh and she frowns with that thought, but then laughs. "We need fighters for the cause if you are willing seems wolf trouble is afoot."

[Haruven(#15070)] "Amon Thranduil cannot exterminate the wolves alone," Haruven notes, lest anyone get the idea that the Elves are willing to foot the bill on this one. "The den located by our scouts is far from our borders, and darkness ever tests the boundaries closer to home, threatening what little forest still remains pure. The Elvenking has agreed to send hunters, but we cannot spare as many as would be needed without our friends and allies. A map marking the location of the pack-den has been sent to your Embassy," he notes to Gloin with a nod of his head, before Oriana gets her own nod as well. "And one to the house of Karath, as well. We shall aid Esgaroth and Erebor in such tactics as are deemed appropriate."

Haru pauses, looking north across the bridge. "As to what has driven the wicked beasts out of the Grey Mountains... I hope only that it stays so far to the north that we do not capture its attention."

Gloin removes his pipe to blow out an elliptical smoke ring; he watches it drift across the water until it is lost in the dark. "Steward of House Karath?" Clearly he is impressed; he bends his head to Oriana a second time, rather more graciously than before and responds, "Than I am pleased to meet you. Gloin son of Groin at your service, Lady Oriana. That name has something of a Dwarven ring to it, if I may say so." The Dwarf approves!

Haruven's speech brings him down to earth with a bump. "I should think not!" he murmurs in outrage in response to those first words. What, those tricksy Elves take all the glory? He does at least deign to listen to the rest of the Elf's information, quieting as he realizes that no, this isn't an attempt to go behind his back. "The folk of the Mountain will send warriors," he promises, craggy features stern and proud. "We are a fighting folk." And not a hunting folk, judging by the silence that follows. "I think," the old Dwarf says at last, somewhat gruffly, "that it is best the three kingdoms work together in this." Which is as near a concession that Elves have their uses as he'll give.

Of Haruven's final suggestion he says nothing at all, but he turns to face northeast, where Erebor lies, and he shivers. Perhaps it's merely the cold getting to his old bones.

"A honour to meet you Gloin son of Groin." Greets Oriana to the dwarf with a smile and respectful bow of her head. "And it just may at that." She finishes with a smirk to his comment of the 'dwarven' ring to the name. Haru then gets her attention with a stern and worried gaze. "None shall do this alone, working together will be the best option. It effects us all after all." With concern in her tone slowly the woman of Karath turns to face the same direction as Gloin with a growing frown. Whatever is out there in the dark is something of nightmares, unthinkable ones. Shuddering at her own thoughts a heavy sigh marks the beginning of her words. "It seems we are all tight with our forces, the darkness has swollowed us up one by one. Well, whatever is afoot we're sure not to back down anyway." That may be the warrior that she denies that's in her speaking out then.

Haruven looks down his nose at Gloin in an expression that would be exasperated if he weren't so clearly a person of immense civility and politeness, and he refrains from comment at the brief outraged outburst. "You will find that a report of the scouting mission has been included in the materials sent to the Dwarven Embassy and the House of Karath, along with the map describing the location of the pack-den," Haru says instead. "You may peruse it at your leisure, and queries regarding its contents may be addressed to me, should any arise."

Somewhat less formally, a thoughtful glance is turned to Oriana. "I recently made the acquaintance of a man from Bree, living here in Esgaroth. A youth by the name of Gidon, who is rumored to have great skill in the art of snares and trapping. He may prove useful should you require such in the tactics you devise. And even if this is not so, you may enjoy speaking with him, as he has seen more places in the wide world than many in Laketown." A smile quirks up one corner of his mouth. "Much like yourself."

Gloin is not one for brooding on old fears (old slights, real or imagined, are quite a different matter of course!). He returns his pipe to his lips and puffs in contentment until Haruven addresses him. This time he does not cough, but there is certainly something of a pause before he supplies an answer: "Most thorough. Your efforts are commendable, Master Elf. I shall pass the information on to the Ravenfeather scouts immediately." Dwarves have scouts? Persons known for stealth? Apparently. "I have just one question. When a hunting party is formed," his gesture includes Oriana too now, "will it be on horseback?"

The pipe returns to his mouth as he listens to the rest of the Elf's words, not intended for him; the glint in his eye suggests he's filing away the information regardless.

Oriana regards them both with a leveled glance as they speak. First she regards Haru and grins at him for a few reasons. "His name came to mind. I have met Gidon once before and I will seek him out, I believe Master Brev will know where to find him. I'll make my way to the Taurdain Suites as soon as possible. As for what he has seen, well, if he has seen as much as me or more then I will truly be impressed." And she can be hard to impress. Looking then to Gloin she gives a shrug. "I suppose not. Though speed would be the concern. The Karath house has steeds bred for battle and war so there would be no need to worry over riding a horse. Let us draw plans and hear everyones abilities and then come to a final conclusion." The woman then steps back and bows her head to them both. "Forgive me, I must depart. I have many matters now including this to attend to. We shall meet again, discuss and plan. Be well both of you." With a smile she then turns to leave them to talk, or, glare at each other. Whatever comes first.

Haruven pauses a moment to peer curiously at Gloin, which is perhaps the Elvish equivalent of goggling at him in shock. That was very nearly a compliment! And it earns a graceful sort of bow in response. "We are pleased and honored to be of assistance in the defense of the lands we share with our neighbors." As long as it doesn't involve extensive travel or significant inconvenience or a lot of money.

As for the horses, Haru seems to dismiss the notion as inconsequential. "The Elves may travel and conduct combat mounted, but the snow of winter or the wet terrain of spring will not prove significant impediment without the steeds, either." Oriana is called away to plot, plan, or work ceaselessly into the night until she runs out of candles, which leaves nothing on the bridge except for an elf, a dwarf, and the usual measure of semi-thawed awkwardness. "Should you require anything further, do not hesitate to send word, of course."

"Hrrm." Gloin purses his lips, letting out a wavering wisp of smoke, as he contemplates whether it would be worse to ride borrowed horses, struggle behind on ponies or not ride at all. Judging by his contorted expression, he has not yet reached a conclusion when Oriana announces her intent to depart. "Goodnight, Lady Oriana," he returns most politely, standing aside to let the Karath steward pass.

Which leaves ... him and Haruven? "My thanks," Gloin returns. "Likewise, seek me out if the folk of the Mountain can be of service." He glances down at his pipe, then removes it from his mouth and taps the ash out on the side of the bridge, watching it fall to the Lake below. "A rare pleasure; pipeweed is hard to come by these days," he remarks, seemingly to the air. "I think I will return to the town. Good night, Master Haruven." He offers the Elf another of those stiff little half-bows and then turns to the Gate Archway: his pace is slow at first, to allow Oriana time to go on her way, but then once he's through he moves on with almost indecent haste, just in case the Elven diplomat is following after. A little Elf goes a long way.

Date added: 2013-06-12 12:02:20    Hits: 88
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