After-dinner Drinks

After-Dinner Drinks
Summary: A selection of young Rhaedan nobles discuss life, the universe … and parental expectations.
Date: 14 July 2013
Amira Kameron Laurel 

Rhaedan Pavilion
Within the spacious pavilion, many couches, chairs and tables have been setup for the many Rhaedan festival goers to rest and take a break from the festival and the Tanifords. There is a initial open area for most commoners to mingle and gather before couches and chairs begin to arrange in smaller groupings around a single table or two for more private gatherings amongst the nobility and royalty. Large swaths of red and gold cloth have been put into use to help segregate the areas to lend some hint of privacy to some of the groups. Most tables have been supplied with platters holding a variety of cheeses, fruits and bread with servers bringing additional food and drink upon request.
14 July 1329

Dinner is served, and the conversation fluxes and shifts throughout all the courtly intrigues, debates, and matters of state as are seemly in the Rhaedan nation today. Dessert, the another course of wine, brings the court into the evening hours and then even slightly after. When the party starts to disperse, the elder Westmarks take their leave - leaving their youngest with a kiss on forehead and a parental admonishment to have fun and not drink too much. It is then her turn to look rather like a deer in the spotlamp - suddenly without parents to hide behind, or her older sister to lead the way, she finds herself clinging to the stem of her goblet with white-knuckles.

In Amira's case Jerric has taken his leave, though he did not say exactly what for. Her guards are there though, along with her handmaid and everyone knows who they all answer to and it is most certainly not the youngest of the Rhaedan siblings! As everyone else but the three disperse, Amira looks into her wine goblet and then at the others. "I wish we could go and swim. This is called Laketown after all and not too often are there places with warm enough water for us."

Kameron smiles, and he takes another drink of his wine. He watches the others a moment. It's unusual for him to be in a room with so many his own age. "It's probably a bit late for a swim. I'd worry, as well, with so many southerners in town, we'd likely just be fodder for rumor."

Laurel stares into her wine for a moment, too. When Amira finally breaks the silence, the Westmark's eyes widen for a moment, then finally, slowly, a small smile settles onto her lips. "We have warm waters in Westmark, your Highness. Safer waters, as well." She nods to Kameron, for once approvingly. "Nevermind the sea dragon everyone swears swims here… public censure is certainly the most deadly enemy."

Having had enough rumors of her own, Amira flinches, but she nods solemnly to Kameron. "I.. never thought about it like that. You are right. Thank you for reminding me." Lifting her wine to her lips, she takes a long sip from it before looking at the Westmark. "How does it feel to be the heir? Are you nervous?" The mention of the sea dragon brings a smile though it is brief. "I used to would think that was not true, a sea dragon. Then I saw big spiders and I saw a dragon. Spiders crawling in her hair.. I think there would be such a thing as a sea dragon."

Kameron nods, "Of course, Your Highness." He smiles then at the sea dragon mentioning. "I don't bear much faith in the sea dragon rumor. Old wives tale, likely." He laughs, "Like the Grape Gobbler." He leans back in his chair, relaxing a bit. "You know I'm an heir, as well, Your Highness." He chuckles, "Not nearly as glamorous as the Lady, of course," and he nods respectfully to Laurel.

The approval is fleeting. "I'm hardly glamourous." Laurel says, quite bluntly. "I will say I am terrified to be the heir. It is not a thing that was meant to be." The wine has flowed freely, and Laurel is a small lass, though her last few cups have been cut liberally with water. "I never thought I should wish that my sister would marry quickly, but now the day has come." She frowns softly, twirling her glass. "They say that Mother Tylon herself went to see the sea dragon. She is not a woman who is prone to exaggeration." A glance at Amira, blue eyes widened a bit. "You were there, Princess?"

It had definitely skipped her mind that Kameron was an heir also, so when he mentions it, she smiles. "I had forgotten. What is it like to be born to it then?" Though as Laurel speaks about it, she turns her attention to the Westmark. "I imagine the weight of responsibility must weigh heavily on your shoulders, for you and Sir Kameron both." Looking back at him a moment, then to Laurel once more. "Mother Tylon went to see it?" As the question is asked of her, she nods once more, solemnly. "I fought my sister while Prince Darrin was attacking me with his sword. I got cut up pretty bad, but I only have a few little scars from it. I should have used my bow and not my sword so I could have fought from a distance. They were both riding.. on giant spiders." Closing her eyes at the memory of the evening that still seems like a dream, her hand involuntary tightens on the goblet. "It was a terrible night. I lost my sister, though truly by then she was no longer my sister."

Kameron shakes his head, "There are parts that are quite flattering, and, well, there are parts that are not so much…" He smiles, nodding at Laurel as she speaks. He looks then to listen to Amira recount her tale, and he looks a bit sad, "I'm sorry for your loss, Your Highness."

Oh. Silly Laurel, of course Amira was there. Her eyelashes flutter softly as she lowers her eyes in shame and tries to hide behind a fallen lock of auburn hair. Then the wine spurs her to move, and boldly - she reaches over to lay a gentle hand on Amira's wrist. "I am so sorry, your Highness. Any woman who would betray her family is not worthy of the title of /sister,/ though. You did the right thing."

"Thank you, Sir Kameron, it seems like a dream, like it happened to someone else. I just never allow myself to think about it so it never bothers me." Giving him a wry smile, Amira lifts her goblet to her lips to finish off the wine. When Laurel reaches over to touch her, she gives her a reassuring look. "Thank you, you are right, she did betray all of us. I was just so happy to be home." Though she does ask Kameron further about his answer. "What is flattering and what are not so much?" She is genuinely curious and does not bother hiding it. Looking at Laurel, "What is terrifying about it?"

Kameron opens his mouth to answer, then looks down into his goblet, slowly closing his mouth as he thinks better of too much honesty. His brow furrows a little, then he looks back at Amira. "There is… power, I suppose? A familial heritage and pride that gives strength and confidence. Being a noble's noble is to be privileged and honored." He shrugs a bit, and then drinks everything remaining in his goblet in several swallows, downing the wine and sitting the goblet on the table. "I'll be told who to marry. Expected to have my own heir." He looks downward once more, "Who I fall in love with won't matter. There's… expectations." He shrugs then, and sighs, and then pushes up to his feet. "It's late. I should probably begin making my way back to the inn."

When the princess offers reassurance, Laurel curls her fingers loosely and draws her hand away. She remains silent, as she prefers, more than happy to let Kameron give his opinion first. When his tone changes abruptly, her auburn eyebrows flicker upwards, and she nods. In an even tone, she comments, rather dryly: "See? Terrifying." She tips her glass slightly towards the Hallstrom, as if in a toast.

His story sounds grim.. but it was one all too familiar. Would her husband not be chosen the same way? "Me too. I will only be given to make a good match between Rhaedan and some random house, for all I can bring is a name. And my own honor. My reputation is shot, though no one ever asks if the accusations or rumors are true or not. Not even Jerric.." With an easy smile though instead of remaining melancholy, she looks between the two. "If you need to marry, Sir Kameron, and Laurels sister does too, why do they not marry you both together?" Then she realizes. "Oh… because you are both heirs and you would have to give up your claim to heir to marry her then?" Nodding to Laurel then, but with a grin. "Certainly terrifying. I hope someday when I marry I at least respect him."

Kameron pauses and nods at Amira. "Plus, I believe my father is hoping for someone greater for me." He offers a warm smile to Laurel, "No offense to your sister, My Lady. My father's ambition, not my own opinion." He looks at Amira once more, "Your reputation is fine, Princess." He's had enough to drink, that their private informality reveals itself here. "I have no doubt, your brother has not asked if it was true because he knows it's not." He gives her a reassuring smile, bows to her, then to Laurel, and turns to leave the tent.

Wine is also a fine fuel for that trademark Westmark temper, which flares hot even in the sickly, wan youngest. Kameron's apology does not come quickly enough to deflect it from flaring into her pale eyes; the young woman stands quickly enough that her chair teeters behind her. "You should, perhaps watch where you voice your father's ambition, then, /Sir./" It's a bare acceptance of the apology, that, but slowly her chin lowers from high jutted angle, just in time to nod to his bow as he departs. She lingers a few moments, still standing, before offering a deep curtsey to Amira. "Excuse me, your Highness. All we can have is faith that our parents will choose a suitable future for us. Thank you for your hospitality." And then she, too, slips from the pavilion.

"Someone greater?" Naturally, Amira tries to fit herself into a square hole.. she is only the youngest in a whole line of siblings, and not even an heir at that! Certainly not someone greater. "Thank you, Sir Kameron." Rising, her maid comes to her side and her guards go on alert. The reassuring smile from Kameron brings a blush to her cheeks and she smiles in return. "Perhaps you are right." Saying nothing as Laurel voices her concerns, she watches as she goes. "It was nice seeing you again!" And she too leaves.

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