Inconspicuous Visitors

Inconspicuous Visitors
Summary: Lady Claire goes to pay Mistress Leof a visit regarding a long belated request from her brother. Prince Samwell seems to be along for the incognito thrill that comes from being not recognized as royalty, but leaves after a short while before Master Duncan's arrival.
Date: 12/11/1329
Related: None
Samwell Claire Leof Duncan 

Laketown - Talonfall Eyrie
In the rear wall of the room is a large fireplace, with a comfortable hearth. A strange decoration is displayed proudly over the fireplace - a Gyrfalcon burnished into a large pale colored leather and highlighted with white tempera paint. A mantle displays a set of deer antlers with at least six points and various carved birds of prey. In front of the hearth is a large worn shaggy bear skin rug, the beast must have been quite a large bear.
A carefully crafted darkened well leather upholstered bench is set in front of the fire, offering comfortable seating. Two small end tables are set on either side of the bench with a comfortable chair to either side. The floor is wooden, kept clean and free of debris.
The mews are all hand made with plenty of room for the birds within. Some of the larger species are kept behind the shop outside in large enclosures except during the nastiest weather; noteworthy species kept in cages are owls, hawks, peregrines, merlins, and hobbies. A golden eagle is kept inside during storms. Accessories are kept for sale at all times - made of fine leather.
Nov 12, 1329

Leof is settled at her hearth, a pot prepared and wrapped "Take this to Master Thatcher's forge." she adds a small loaf of home cooked bread, sending one of the local children off with a few coins, and a nice meal for someone nearby apparently. The smell of fragrant tea fills the Eyrie, the bird stock actually a bit low - its the end of the season afterall. The notoriously maltempered falconer stands up straight, dusting her apron as she moves to crack her window open. Her hobby is perched free in the rafters observing the shop like normal. A small jar of oil is taken as she settles on her bench to begin cleaning and oiling her bow, protecting the wood calmly.

Claire may have no interest in falconry but her presence in the Eyrie is based on a request. Something that finds her in the company of Prince Samwell, having come across him on another unrelated errand. But the smell of the tea does draw something of a smile from the lady's features. "Good day, Mistress. Is this a good time to pay a visit," she inquires, looking from the hearth to the occupant with a polite nod of her head.

Prince Samwell is out on public relations or something, riding across the lands to visit people, hand out gifts, hug babies and so on. After coming across the Lady Claire he was only too happy to follow her on her errand and keep her company. He seems a little surprised by the scene that presents itself to him in the dwellings.

Leof smiles a bit "Always a good time." she offers, "It was terribly brisk out this morning, can I get you a mug of tea?" she asks, classic mountain hospitality. She straightens herself up, dusting her apron again "I have some venison stew too if you are hungry." Samwell is given a smile but its pretty clear she has no idea who he is. "Anything I can help you with today?" she asks, spotting one of her favorite urchins at the door to gesture for them to come in, bending down to whisper and nod, moving to take a basket of some variety of preserves "Take one to your ma, and the rest to the temple. There are sweets in the bottom for you and your sister." she makes a sh gesture and sends the kid off with a grin. "Sorry about that today is the day of the week the children have figured out they can get sweets and errands from me every single week." she offers, bowing her head. "Would you care for some tea, sir?" she asks, voice soft.

Samwell nods to Leof with a pleasant smile. "Thank you, it's appreciated, Mistress.", the young man says politely and slips the boy two brightly colored candysticks to take home. Otherwise he just stands around, leaving the women to deal with whatever business Claire had.

"I meant to pay a visit to you to make up for our earlier meeting. My brother had sent me with a bit of a request for arm fastenings, depending on the manner in which you choose to have yours made," Claire replies, stepping to one side as the children move closer to the door while lightly placing a hand on Samwell's arm in guidance. The lack of recognition is enough to draw a twitch at the corner of her lips as she looks to Leof and answers, "And tea would be fine for both of us. Thank you." Though, it does not keep her from tilting her head in the prince's direction with a briefly whispered comment for him.

You whisper, "Don't let her know who you are immediately. There could be something said for being unknown - for a time." to Samwell.

Samwell whispers: I know, it's fun to not be recognized and get treated like a normal person for once.

Leof shifts, gathering three mugs from a discrete location - kept in such a way that feathers and dust can't get in them. She pours three mugs, taking a tray to prepare a proper service despite her lack of proper tea pot. She moves the tea to the table, gesturing at Samwell to help himself to the tea - honey, cream, and sugar cubes are kept on the side. The leather clad woman takes a small spoon of honey to add to her herbal tea, lifting it to her lips to sip upon. "I'm Leof, its nice to meet you, please, have a seat, it is too chilly to stand by the door." she smiles "Your earlier visit? Oh I had taken no offense, Kat visiting was a surprise for me as well." she offers both seats on the nice leather "What variety of arm fastenings? If you wanted armor Duncan Thatcher might be a superior choice to me." she looks a bit confused "Or did you just want a nice thick leather glove or some sinew?" she asks, looking slightly confused. "I apologize for not knowing your friend, I assume he is important, but I'm not really so terribly good at keeping the names of people I'll never meet. I've bigger concerns, like keeping my head." she offers with a lopsided grin.

Samwell seems a little amused by Claire's whisper and whispers back in kind, before he sits down and accepts the mug of tea from the woman. "I'm nobody in particular.", the prince claims with his easy smile, "I just came across the Lady Claire and thought I'd offer her some company. You may call me Sam if you wish."

The response to her words is enough to cause an warming smile to cross Claire's features, lowering her hand from his arm before moving towards the seats with a look from Leof to Samwell. "I was just going to say…" Whatever she was about to reply about her companion's name is filled by the prince's reply. "Or he can introduce himself just well enough without my intervention. But, you speak of Master Thatcher too? My brother is thinking of a thick leather glove for those few men who have some skill with falconry. It is why I came here rather than an armorer."

Leof brow raises "Well I can make Falconry gloves. Not a problem. Master Thatcher is a skilled armor smith, he might be making me a thimble for archery." she offers "Possibly some actual armor, depending on money. Tired of getting my arse kicked by the woods." she offers with a grin. "Maybe he'll come by in a bit or I can take you to him, hm?" she offers "I like him, he's a hard worker, good man." she pauses "How is that knight friend of yours doing, no long term damages, right?" she asks, pausing a bit to pull open a drawer, taking out a few things. A pretty pair of embossed gloves are in the drawer "Speaking of, if you see Sir Tarris, remind him that Bethany hasn't picked up her effects and has missed a number of lessons and I'm admittedly thinking of taking a hunting trip to get more sea otter pelts for personal use." She grins "I might be gone a week or two but the pelts. Do either of you know how the winters are around here? Should I be expecting hip deep snow or a sprinkling or what?" she asks with a grin.

"There can be snow, yes.", Samwell replies with his smile, "So dress warmly, Mistress." He finishes his tea and rises to his feet. "I don't wish to hamper your talk though. Thank you for the tea, Mistress. I'll go for a little walk, take a look around. Until later, Lady Claire." He bows slightly to the lady and departs.

Leof eyes Samwell "No need to run off friend." she offers, chuckling "I don't make things that aren't appropriate for a gentleman to see." she offers, reaching to offer a grin to Claire "Be safe, stop in any time." she offers to Sam, giving him a quick bow of her head.

"It is probably nothing terrible as being up in the mountains," Claire answers, shifting with the intent of standing when Samwell bows to her in kind. Instead, she holds the mug of tea carefully between both hands with a nod given instead. "Hopefully, I will see you later, Sam." Said with all deference to his present name.

Samwell winks to Claire and slips out.

Claire notes ruefully after catching the wink from the departing prince with a deliberate turn towards Leof, "Falconry gloves. May I at least look at the sketches beforehand if you must create them? Not that I understand anything of the necessities of a falconer, but it is an area that my brother and his men are skilled in. Perhaps, we can try a couple of them before I send them home?"

Leof laughs "These Are The basic styles, I'm not Very good at sketching But I will Try. " She sets The samples down, moving to pull a paper pad out. the top sketch is for dainty womens slippers made of leather and hunting boots.

"You don't have to right this moment, Mistress Eadberht," Claire reassures with a wave of one hand dismissively with a reminder of the rest of the earlier queries coming back to mind. "As to Sir Jaren, he is doing better. As is Bethany, but she has sustained a number of injuries that will keep her from attending any lessons for some time, unfortunately. If you'd like, I can bring by maid with me later and we can collect the girl's things?"

Leof smiles for a moment "I don't mind." she pauses "That is good news." the mention of Bethany taking injuries causes a deep frown "What happened? SHe's such a competant girl." her expression shows great displeasure at the notice "Well then, since she's not well, we'll make a gift parcel up for her." she frowns "Yes you'll have to deliver it, I'm sorry. Closed border and all or I'd deliver it personally." she actually visibly fusses at the news "Lets see if she's injured some new boots and a pair of slippers and some jerky and dried fruit." she mumbles to herself.

"She's at the Temple, if you would like to visit. She was injured by a man many times larger and stronger than herself. Not to mention with a much bigger sword," Claire replies with the beginnings of a frown while adding honey to the mug for additional sweetening. "In fact, I think she would like to have visitors."

Leof smiles "Is he dead?" she asks, almost innocently, but her face gives away that the slight is not at all acceptable. "I'm very sorry that she got hurt "I would like to visit her, she's a very sweet girl. So pretty and clever." she offers, grinning lopsidedly. "Perhaps even though she's injured we can work on some of the lighter lessons." she offers with a grin. "There are some bonding excercises. She might enjoy it, but I'll see how she's feeling before we do." she offers, settling in. "Can she have sweets?"

"I should think so, hearing Sir Gauvain speak of the man who injured him in the same stroke," Claire notes with some measure of satisfaction, smile faint but still present while considering the question. "I think she can eat whatever she likes, but it also depends on the Temple's healers as well. I am concerned for her wrist, but I am considering the possibility of her being dressed up for the upcoming festivities."

Leof is quiet, thinking for a long moment "I have a dress, and no where to wear it, I bought it for something that isn't going to happen. Do you think she might like it? It was picked by someone with good taste." she actually looks pink cheeked on this, slightly embarassed "I don't think the person I'm fond of cares if I dress up."

"Perhaps, but should you not keep it? Just in case you do have a chance to wear it?" It's with genuine concern that Claire makes such a question, fingers wrapping about the warmth coming from the mug before settling it comfortably in her lap. "I think Bethany is young enough to like pretty things like flowers, gowns and dancing. And just because /they/ do not care, what about /you/?"

Leof smiles "I'm not really the dress type, just a minute, I'll get the dress set and you can take a look." she gets sheepish "Prince Stefan bought it before telling me who he is and ah.. I really don't wear dresses very often. I don't go to parties, I can't dance, I'll be honest I'm a bit rude for polite society." she shifts, moving to the backroom to pull the indigo dress with its french grey (brownish silver) embroidery and the matching french grey corset with delicate embroidery. Its likely the purchaser that has her embarassed "He ah sent a pink one, but I'm keeping that one for if I ever find a man brave or stupid enough to attempt marriage with me." she actually looks sheepish. The dress's size likely gives away that Leof has a figure under the leather.

Claire bemusedly listens to the explanation between taking sips of tea, cautious of the warmth until her eyes set on the dress with an appreciative nod. "Quite lovely. Though, is it because the gift came from Prince Stefan that you are not going to wear it? On the other hand, that may be prying far too much. My apologies," she notes with a smile, even as the peeking form of her guard comes close to the door while otherwise maintaining his duties. In the intervening silence, she considers, "Bethany should like to wear something so fine. Would you mind if I bring it up with Sir Gauvain?"

Leof considers "Where do I ever go to need a dress? Dresses are inappropriate in the woods chasing animals down." she admits. "I don't know, I'm just never going to go anywhere nice enough to warrant owning such a dress." Even though its tailored to her figure. She looks embarassed "I bought it to visit someone but that was months ago and the invitation was never re-extended so, I guess I feel guilty having a dress worth two silver." she admits, looking embarassed still. The dress likely looks good on her. "I am very embarassed by Prince Stefan every time I meet him. I nearly slapped him when we first met for being fresh. Rather glad I didn't now." she admits, sheepishly.

"Good that you never did, indeed," Claire replies after a few moments, seated on the leather bench as she looks at the dress brought out for review. "Still, if you allow me to speak with Bethany's father, I will let you know if he allows her to attend the festivities. Much more than that, whether the Temple's healers and I agree on her progress. Granted, they have more say in the matter." With a glance towards the doorway where her guard waits, she looks back with a query. "Should I leave you to the rest of your day? Surely, keeping me company is not the only thing you have? Or rather, I would not want to keep prospective buyers away."

Leof refolds the dress. "No need to rush off. My afternoons are generally idle affairs, I don't have a riding lesson today or any errands finding things today. I was going to make spiced cookies for the orphans but I'll likely have more than enough opportunity to do that tomorrow. I was going to try to get a buck for them. Venison is hearty and nutritious." she offers, calmly. She smiles "If you have errands, don't stay to keep me company unless you want." she seems very calm "I was going to cook supper for a friend and see if they would like to join me for a flagon or two of ale but I have an opinion that you are a bit too classy for getting drunk with guilders." she offers with a laugh. yes. The industrious Leof sits on her ass often.

"Did I hear someone mentioning hearty and nutritious venison?" A male voice comes from the doorway as Duncan Thatcher makes his way inside, hobbling just a bit and leaning upon his iron cane. His brows raise as he notes Claire's presence, and he immediately looks apologetic, "Oh, beggin' your pardon milady. I didn't know Leof had company." He makes the best bow from the waist he can manage, placing his cane in front of him and resting both hands on it as he bends as deeply as he can comfortably manage. "Master Duncan Thatcher, at your service, milady. Though I can just as easily make myself scarce if you please." He offers a genial smile, first towards Claire, then flicking his eyes over towards Leof.

"Mostly, I find that there is something of an adjustment to be made now that I am back between here and Wolveshire. Many people to meet and to be available for. Quite a difference to being constantly on the road," Claire answers, as if the idea of such things is not disconcerting but more of a way of life. An observation that she doesn't remark upon as their small party increases by one, looking over one shoulder towards the doorway and Duncan's arrival while rising to great the man with a shake of her own head. "No need to make yourself scarce, Master Thatcher. We were somewhat about to part ways. Not to mention I should see where my companion from earlier wandered off to." The latter meant towards Leof.

Leof stands up, setting her tea down "Now now, come in, its cold out there and you'll catch a cold." she offers "I was going to try to make some tomorrow. I thought I'd save a steak for you and one for me and make sausages but roast the majority." she actually stands to offer her arm to Duncan, for support. "If he needs a cloak, borrow one hm? I know you are from the south and I just worry about people getting chilled. I can't stand it myself." she admits, her hands touching Duncan's nearest arms. "Lady Claire Sollinger is one of my customers and you know I make time for you." she offers, patting the armor smith's arm gently - in a way that suggests a real friendship and possibly her fussy nature.

"Mistress Leof, I've been living in Laketown my whole life, I'm rather sure I can survive their winters, given how many of them I have managed to survive already." Duncan notes towards Leof, but his tone is humored and teasing, not testy and grumpy about it, and he certainly shows no signs of shying away from her when she draws near. Nor does he fail to step further inside and allow the door to close behind him. "Please don't rush off on my account, milady. Though certainly I wouldn't wish to keep you from other business."

The gestures are not lost on Claire, who has set aside her own mug with a dismissive wave of her hand in denial of rushing off. "I am not rushing off on your account, but yes. Do have a seat. Mistress Leof and I can discuss and visit later, as I will be traveling to Laketown quite frequently. It is not as if I will be going away for weeks at a time." Looking to Duncan, she adds, "I should likely investigate a visit to your shop eventually."

Leof snorts "Shut up or I'll drag you up into the mountains where I was raised." she jokes, standing up on her tip toes, surprisingly nimble about it too! Duncan is greeted with a chaste cheek peck. "Please be safe Lady Claire." she offers, "Or do you want something different for your supper? I believe one of the merchants said he was getting mussels in there fresh in the morning. I could cook you a pot with garlic and butter sauce with white wine given to me as a gift." she offers. She pauses "Lady Claire is a healer." she offers to Duncan "REally though, my lady, you and your friend are welcome any time. If you want dinner, give me a little notice. I'm very good at it." she offers with a warm smile. "Be safe?" she asks, elbowing her old cripple friend gently in the side.

"Ah, well of course, milady. Best Defense Armory, over in the Craftsman's Quarter." Duncan smiles brightly once more, briefly leaning over to accept the cheek peck and placing his hand over Leof's, giving it a pat as he scoots aside to allow Claire to depart unimpeded. His leg is clearly crippled…even at a glance it's obvious that it was likely very badly broken at some point and did not heal quite right, but it doesn't seem to be causing him any real pain. "You'll of course be most welcome." He looks to Leof and chuckles, "Whatever you feel like making is fine with me." He's hardly a picky eater, after all.

"And you, Mistress Leof. A good evening to you as well, Master Thatcher. I shall remember to visit." When? She's not certain, but the name and location has been committed to memory as the noblewoman moves to take her leave. The leg is noted in passing and because of her abilities as a healer, it's all that Claire can do to not mention it. Not now, but it was noted for later.

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