Making Enemies

Making Enemies.
Summary: Sammel and Victricia share a picnic, while the handmaid Nina broods on silent hostility.
Date: 08/12/2013
Related: None.
Sammel Victricia 

Brivey Keep - Upper Bailey
Were it not for the walls and the towering keep one would think they have stepped into a garden. Here paths of cut stone wind their way through well-tended flower plots and trimmed topiaries. Short hedges line the walkways leading up to the keep's entrance, and lanterns hang from posts set at even intervals to light the way. The main, wide path leads from the lower bailey to the keep's entrance hall, while two other smaller paths split off in opposite directions to head to the guest wing and the temple.
Mon Aug 12, 1329

Vi stretched out on the blanket, where it was settled beneath the neat shade from one of the well tended trees that added flavor of the ever blooming garden. Though it should be said, that the girl was settled on her stomach and occasionally plucked from the full set spread of fruits and honey baked ham. There was fresh bread too and soft cheeses. It made up for the breakfast that she missed. The conversation between herself and Nina was light as well, if it was there at all; with the elder woman looking on like a heartbroken mother hen who saw a future that she could do nothing to change and no way to protect her charge from it. Meanwhile, her charge was resentful for having such a dark and bitter future painted for her and as such, was ignoring her maid. The rest? Well, them she was just avoiding; after all, even she had heard the rumors.

The handsome golden locked heir of Brivey Keep was announced by his laughter; easy and carefree, loud enough to carry far ahead of the man himself. He was making his way up from the lower bailey in the company of a group of Ridel knights, the natural centerpoint, trading jokes and comments freely. They were his peers, more or less, and he fought and trained with them since he was young. He could take their ribbing with a grin, and give it away twice as bad. They had just come from blade work, sweaty and flushed, skin glisning beneath the rays of the warm summer sun. It was mostly by accident he caught look of her, as she hadn't been directly in his path. With more laughter, a slapped back here and there, he excused himself.
His approach was slow, his smile only growing as he took in the sight of her. And once he arrived, his bow was perfect. A flourish of courtly eloquence, finished with a wink. "My Lady. Don't you look about as splendid as spring after a long hard winter. Might you do me the honor of allowing me to join you?" His eyes, warm, were playful and bright.

It was the sound of laughter that drew her attention, but familiar and typically always welcomed that had Victricia smiling in Sammel's direction. Her weight shifted as well, easing from her stomach onto her side, and from there, she pushed up with her hand so that she could tuck her legs in and rest weight on her hip. It left her less prone, without setting her on her rump but it also had the added advantage of…showing off some of her more favored assets, by way of that gown. It wasn't on purpose.
"Sir Sammel, you offer me such kindness. Who knew that beyond the body of a knight, there lurked a poets soul. It would be my honor, to have you join me. Nina, pour Sir Sammel a drink." Poor Nina. Her stature had gone even straighter, when the group had arrived and now she sat as if possessed of a broomstick for a spine, refusing to meet the Lord's gaze and when she did? There was no kindness in her eyes. With quite the prefuctory motions, wine was poured and offered in stoic silence. Along with the not-so-subtle suggestion that she wouldn't be excusing herself any distance to allow for privacy.

"Mhmm. It would only be kindness if I was lying," Sammel responded with a crooked grin, and without hesitation flopped himself down next to her, a cross legged poise. Though his eyes had taken in Nina briefly, she was mostly ignored. Dismissed. Out of sight and out of mind. Just another servant in the knight's view, and only to be commented on if acting out of place. "As it is, I'd say the kindness is yours." His chuckle came quietly. There had been a subtle little eying of that bosom of hers, but he hadn't commented on it.
"Thank you," to the drink. He plucked it free as soon as it was offered, and took a full swallow. "Gods!" He exclaimed, laughing. "That is good. I swear I've sweated out half my bloody bodyweight out on the grounds today."

"That you take the time to speak it, makes it a kindness yet," Vi winked; tongue peeking between her teeth. Oblivious to the way that Nina plucked her hand back as if she'd been scalded and fretted fluttering a touch against the hem of Vi's skirt, ensuring that it was still draped over her ankles and more, her feet. Since it seems that she'd chosen to go without them. It wasn't as if she -could- run off at the moment, even if she wanted to. Or ride, for that matter. Effectively trapped.
"Perhaps you have?" To the loss of his bodyweight, "Though you do not appear anything less for it, incase you were worried." Wink; pluck at a bit of cheese, smushed with a grape and stuffed into a bit of sweetbread, before she nibbled.

"I -was- worried!" Sammel announced, and then made to flutter his hand against his face as if fanning away a fainting attack. "Dear me, I thought! What if I've shrunk so much the ladies no longer find me appealing? Or one lady in particular, I should say. It was near a panic attack. I think you could see it on my face when I walked up, couldn't you?"
The rest of the wine was gone the next second. He stared down into the empty glass, furrowed. "I probably should stick to water, shouldn't I? It being so early still. What say you, my Lady? Could I indulge, or should I temper my wants around you?"

"What I could see on your face, my Lord, was that you seem at ease with your men and it pleases me. Though I would hope that last round of laughter was not at my own expense," delivered one part seriousness, three parts tease as she offered him a grin. "That you were concerned however…," the rest of that tapered off into nothing as she took a moment to simply admire him. The way his hair was at current the way he'd looked that night in the river and her smile took on a note of gentle fondness.
Nina was so caught up in fretting over her mistress, on purpose, that she missed the emptiness of the Lord's cup with what was to her mind, credible excuse.
"I think…, my Lord, that with me you must surely indulge and spare temperance for when lives may depend upon it."

"Would I ever laugh at your expense, my Lady?" asked Sammel with that devilish charm in his eyes. Of course he would. Once or twice more he might've glanced down at the way that dress encaptured her luscious curves. But he still made it a subtle thing, only noticed if one paid real attention. He wasn't frowning, either. Or complaining about her choice of dress. Perhaps because he hadn't walked in on her and Jerric this time around while she was wearing it. A scratch to his cheek, and then he nonchalantly added: "Unless you really deserved it?" Wink.
"Mhmm. And it's always so much fun when we indulge, isn't it?" Wicked grin. "You've convinced me."

"Mmm, I think you would. Often and freely and in that ever rich voice of yours, until you looked as if you were helpless with it. In fact…I may recall a time or three in which you have done exactly that," tit for tat, Vi watched him, humor dancing in her eyes, before she reached down to scoop up a piece of bread and fitted with a soft cubte of cheese, offered both up to his lips.
"One might go so far as to say it was decadent, even if you have somewhat…put a damper on my notion of how a valet ought to be." Which, while it might be confusing to her lady, would be more than plain to him that she'd had other notions in mind when donning that particular attire.

He leaned forward slowly, took his time to open his mouth and take the little tidbit she was offering. Before his lips closed, she'd feel their kiss against her fingertips, the curl of a tongue playfully exploring. Then he was chewing, swallowing, leaning back with a look of lionine contentment.
"The problem with Valets is.. they're always men," Sammel murmured. "It's hard to connect the dots and make them scintillating, when you've never ever had any thoughts remotely.. imaginative.. regarding their uniforms before." He snorted with amusement. "This cheese is good. Tasty." Though he'd looked at her fingertips as he said it.

The tips of those fingers had wriggled lightly against his tongue; the soft pull of her nails and the playful threaten of a pinch to see it captured, before her hand withdrew. Once more she shifted, with extreme care so that as she reclined, her head came to rest against his thigh while a measure of her weight came to rest against her backside as she settled. There'd been a flicker of pain though her eyes, a wince and the sound of Nina huffing for the foolish girl's closeness. Idiot child.
Retreating, Nina took shelter closer to the tree, while Vi settled a hand against the flat of her stomach and stretched the other out to capture a sliver of ham, that much as that cheese had been, was offered to his lips. "Then, perhaps my lord would care to see to my education. Upon what -has- your mind touched in imaginative measure. Strictly…so that I might have a better understanding of you, of course." And not at all so that she could tweak her wardrobe.

His thigh was taunt beneath the settle of her head, made so by his current cross legged poise. At the same time he was relaxed, reclined with obvious comfort in the girl's presence. Gently his hand fell down, tucked in against her soft blond hair and sorted through those gentle rivers appreciativly. A perfect day in the upper bailey, wasn't it? And looking at him, who could ever believe he'd done her any cruelty?
"Your education..?" Asked with a chuckle. He paused to think, and took the moment to dip his head down and snatch the ham free. This time it was joined with a lazy litte lick across the sensitive skin of her palm before he withdrew. "Let's see. I admit I've sometimes wondered if those mousy little clerks in the accounting office are as quiet as they look. There are one or two girls among them.." Grin. "And right now.. the cooks. How can you not explore a few ideas when your mouth is already tingling with pleasure?"

Nina could, that's who! And from the brooding way the gray haired woman watched his hand sort through the girl's scalp, it was all that was going on in her mind. Gods but if only she'd had something on hand to knit. No. Then she might be tempted to stab him with a knitting needle. No. That would be too kind. Damn him.
Vi though, was perfectly content, looking at the man as if he could do no wrong. After all, he'd apologized, hadn't he? And the sweep of his tongue against her palm courted the sound of her delighted little giggle. "Clerks and cooks, is it? I confess it brings to mind a rather…interesting notion for the kitchen; though I daresay in a place of this size it's a place that never sleeps." Her tone suggested that it was a pity, whilst Nina leveled the pair with a sharp look. Stuck between a rock and a hard place. The girl would be married to soon-to-be Duke. There was little higher she could aspire to climb and if she spoke against it…well, Vi's future would be in tatters. Defeated, disappointed, Nina let her gaze fall to the grass and tried to pretend there were other alternatives in the world.

"When the Heir says a part of the castle should sleep.. it'll sleep," Sammel promised her with a rich and throaty laughter to match her giggles. "Dont you worry, my little Victricia, small details like that are not going to stand in the way of fate." Wink. Like it was a grand conquest, a knight's quest and tale that nothing could stop. And he was still ignoring Nina as if she didn't even exist. As if she couldn't see the rabid wolf that hid beneath his charming dog's exterior. With a quick look around, he noticed there weren't anyone watching. So he dipped down, and this time it was Victricia's face he angled for. A light little kiss to skate its way over her lips.

Small details like what? Like servants? Like Nina? Because while Vi glowed beneath the sound of Sammel's laughter and gave a little wiggle of her head, to nuzzle against his thigh, it was Nina who cleared her throat as the lord dipped to steal a kiss.
"There are windows, milord and servants and servants will gossip. I should thank ye to act like a gentlemen when in miladys company at least," and gods willing beyond, "until ye are properly married." So -now- she was going to be a dutiful watchdog.
Vi's lips had gone still beneath him, she herself tense as she frowned and cut a look in the handmaid's direction. Nina wasn't even attemping to meet Sammel's eyes, nor Victricia's, but rather watching somewhere in between. Her tone a low. And what could Vi say to contradict her? The woman was right.

"I should think that a single kiss on a day like this would be viewed as a blessing by anyone who saw it," murmured Sammel, utterly unphased by Nina's interruption. In this he didn't even take her to task, because she had her job and she was doing it. "A sign for the future, a glimpse into a marriage will be happy and blessed." Then he straightened out, laughter in his eyes and in his voice as he admitted: "But then again, there's always the Gods be damned venemous tongues who always have to belive the worst. Oh fine, oh fine. I'll keep my lips from your innocent maiden's lips, oh Lady mine, even though it breaketh my hearth and soul to do it!" More laughter, him throwing his head back and letting it spill free.

Caught up in silence and in shock, Vi did little more than watch, casting worried glances between both Sammel and Nina, her breath all but held until he spoke and both in different ways might view as much as feel, in Sammel's case, how tension left her.
For Nina, it was a small victory, despite his lordship's mocking and the woman spoke no further on the matter; merely gave a huff that could have been taken any-whicha-way and set her hands to smoothing out her skirt. There was too little time.
There was too much time! Vi's thoughts ran counter, while the world spun about her. "A poets soul, I knew it. Every word from your lips, comes blessed with a bard's skill, my Lord. Truly, truly I am to be a woman blessed." Easing to her side, it was Vi herself then, that shifted to pour wine for her betrothed and left his glass sitting near at hand; though she stole a small sip of it for herself and in the wake of his laughter, made to question. "How was your training, my lord? I confess I am sorry to have missed the sight. You'll forgive me, I hope, if I promise to be present on the morrow?"

No need for tension at all, was the message his own bodylanguage had been whispering against her. Through the whole thing he had been completely relaxed, at ease there against her, his fingers still sorting their way through her hair like it was the most favorite sensation he knew in the world.
"Gods! Save me from poets. Don't you know the only thing they want to do is sing their way up the skirts of lonely windows?" His eyes crinkled as he said it, then continud on with a mock-loud decleration: "Promise me that if I take a lance in the chest one day, you'll ban poets from my hall forever more!"
"You desire to watch me play with my sword, my Lady? I would enjoy that. And well.. training," as if it was something else completely, "was good enough. You take some hits, you give some, and then laugh when the violence has settled and the blood calms again."

It was his body language that she responded too, the very thing that kept her calm rather than obviously fretting and perhaps unwittingly saying something that would have made the situation worse, rather than better. So she gave him a smile; a gentle thing, one with eyes full of gratitude to go with that smile. It lasted almost as long as it took her to give way to laughter, an amused spiel of laughter.
"You might make a good poet," Vi teased, her gaze playfully considerate even as he teased. "But I promise, if ever I am left without you, I shall ban all poets then and forever more. Unless they happen to be handsome and look as you do." Wink.
Wink and laugh, until she was shaking with it and her balance tipped and the squeak of pain interrupted; though it didn't temper her smile. "Oh more than anything!" The lady gushed, nose wriggling playfully in his direction. "But," two topics at once then, in the same fell swoop of words. "Only with permission?"

"Well. I suppose if I'm in the grave, and some mirror image of my epicness comes around, even I couldn't hold it against you if you kept him around," Sammel said with a rumbled chuckle. "Even if it was a poet."
He realized finally that there was wine in his hand, and took a sip. "Mhm. You have my permission." From the way he caught those eyes, that answer was meant to settle both those discussions they were currently running.

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