(1866-07-10) Tracano Family Dinner
Tracano Family Dinner
Summary: The Tracano family meets and discusses many things, with great news!!
Date: 1866-07-10
Related: Three Requests
Alysande  Tristan  Martyn  Clara  Jaren  Johanna  

War Room - Sunsreach Palace - Sunsreach - Rivana
In set
Juillet 10, 1866

It is not often, strictly, that Alysande sends summons to those of her close family that remains for a private meal (and likely a meeting of minds, as it were), but there it is. The Rose Queen has summoned, and so they've all come: her cousin Martyn and his wife Johanna; Martyn's youngest (and only surviving) sister, Clara; her cousin and Spymaster, Tristan; and of course, her soon-to-be husband, Viscount Jaren Cassomir.

The meal is hosted in what has been sometimes called the "war room", given that it furnished as such: a larger, circular table in the center of the room with heavy oaken chairs surrounding; maps of Rivana, an old map of Carsonne, and parts of the southern reaches of Couviere and the northern reaches of Alzhared all hanging on the windowless walls.

Everlights of pleasantly soft greens and blues hang in specially made sconces and sit glowing around the table in between dishes of food: roast boar, roasted flesh cracked and dripping with juices; spiced apples, spiced with exotic cinnamon and clove from the Alzhredi; fresh field greens and carrots tossed lightly in oil and vinegar; mashed turnips; sweet orange tubers fresh from the hearth, sliced open and stuffed with butter, brown sugars from Couviere, and cinnamon; long string beans cooked in butter and herbs; chilled slices of icy redmelon, flecked with black seeds; and baskets of light rolls with honey and butter to spread on them. A small feast for the Tracano cousins while they speak with each other of things of import.

Alysande's plate is halfway empty when she interrupts the more pleasant and light conversation by tapping her wine goblet with her knife. "Cousins. And my dear Jaren. There are some things I brought us together to speak of tonight, not just to eat, drink, and enjoy each other's company— though I am glad for the chance to do that was well!"

Martyn has exchanged his white Templar's tabard for green and gold tonight given this is a family affair but there is no taking the Templar out of the prince. He prayed before supper and when he did look up from his food to talk it was mostly about the state of the army or to ask about the battles in the north.

Now though he sits quietly dipping bread in honey before popping it into his mouth. Alysande's annoucement brings a rare smile to the prince's lips and he quickly puts aside his bread and lifts his cup "To the blessings of family."

Tristan has done more listening than talking during this meal, instead he has enjoyed the food that was prepared, though his portions might be considered small to some. It had been a relatively pleasant experience, certainly more entertaining than his normal habit of eating alone. As Alysande calls for everyone's attention, a goblet of wine is halfway to his lips. His gaze moves up the table as he goes ahead and takes a long sip and then puts the goblet back down.

At least, he was in the process of doing that… that is until Martyn makes his little toast. Sighing inwardly, he lifts it back up, smiles, and then takes another sip.

Jaren Cassomir isn't quite the wallflower he was trained to be in the presence of the Royal family anymore (far cry from it, in fact), but that doesn't necessarily make him a grand raconteur though. He still tends towards the quiet side, responding when spoken to, laughing at the jokes that do tickle his funny bone, making an occasionally actually-witty aside in a deadpan fashion. It's not quite passivity, because he's clearly an active listener, and he seems comfortable enough in conversation, but it seems likely that in most cases the Queen's Champion will always be a man of (relatively) few words. His attention does turn towards Alysande at the dinging of the cup, though Martyn's toast does bring a faint…if perhaps a tiny bit sad…smile to his lips, for the ever-present remembrance of just how much family he's lost, and he briefly raises his cup before sipping himself, and turning his attention back to Alysande.

"To the blessings of family," Alysande echoes her cousin, lifting her goblet. Her expression saddens for a moment, and her tone quiets. "And to the memory of those who have gone before us," and then an impish twinkle comes to her eyes suddenly, "and to the joy of those who will come after us."

"In fact," she nods to Martyn, "I will let you share your news first, Martyn," no titles tonight, not even to her. Tonight is a family dinner, not an affair of state, whatever they discuss.

She glances at Tristan with an amused look, the sort she tends to get right before sharing a particular bit of choice gossip. She reaches over to Jaren, though, and lightly pats his knee under the table.

Johanna lifts her glass as well, smiling to her husband and shaking her head slightly with amusement. She has had the time to grow used to— even fond of— his Templar ways. As the Queen continues the toast, she lifts her glass to that as well, drinking when the toast is done and the queen makes her comment to Martyn. She squeezes her husband's hand under the table, her expression pleased and excited.

Martyn sets down his glass and squeezes Johana's hand in turn, smiling at her, then the queen and all the rest "Johana is with child," he shares very clearly pleased with this news . "The midwife says it will be born in the new year or perhaps the end of this one."

Tristan frowns at Alysande's words, his gaze going down to stare into his wine for several long moments. Her next words jar his attention and he blinks up at Martyn, and then to Johanna, and then narrows his eyes in suspicion. He then glances over at Alysande and catches her amused look, and then he glances between the three of them. More suspicions come to him, and for a moment, if someone is paying enough attention, it might appear as if the blood drains from his face.

Quickly, his gaze shifts to Martyn and his wife and he offers a nod. "Congratulations cousin." The words start off a little choked but then he seems to compose himself and even offer the two a smile. He even gives them a little toast.

<FS3> Jaren rolls Perception: Great Success. (4 5 2 4 1 7 4 8 7 1 2 1 7 4 7 3)

"Well, that explains why you were so quick to leap at that toast. Congratulations, Martyn." Jaren smiles towards the man, sipping from his cup once more. He glances briefly towards Tristan, a brow quirking over his left eye, but whatever seems to have sparked that touch of curiosity, he doesn't comment on it aloud. At least not yet. this is Martyn and Johanna's moment, after all.

Alysande puts down her goblet and claps her hands in delight. "The end of this year? Splendid! Oh, I'm so happy for you both… we'll have to move you to a larger suite. Of course. And find someone to take Greenmeadow…" she sighs in annoyance. "None of my barons strike me as functional enough to make counts of, sadly." She frowns. "So you may be stuck there a bit longer, coz, until I can weasel someone useful into that position."

She groans and glances at Jaren. "Why can't all my barons be like your house was? Loyal, honest, true… and not so much of this damned petty backbiting and manuevering. We Rivanans seem to make fighting with each other a damned art form."

She looks to Tristan. "Speaking of that, any headway into my dead Baron?" He is safe. For now.

Johanna beams. "Yes, or early next year. We're thrilled." She leans against Martyn for a moment, her expression absolutely happy with the news.

Surprise colors the expression upon Clara's face, which is swiftly replaced with a warm smile. "Congratulations to the both of you!" She settles back in her chair, shaking her head lightly in slight amusement. "I can't believe I didn't pick up on the signs sooner, dear brother. Of course, I have been distracted with other events as of late." Clara doesn't go into much detail. She falls a bit silent once more, that tell-tale look of thought clouding her visage once more.

Okay, here was something he could latch onto. A couple of somethings in fact. Sitting up, Tristan straightens the lace at his sleeves and begins to speak, "When it comes to the administration of Greenmeadow, I might have some suggestions in mind, but I must admit that this news might accelerate some of the plans I have been working on putting together for you to peruse, cousin." He offers Alysande a smile and a nod. "We can speak more about that at a later time though as I am sure it would be far too boring for such an occasion."

"As to the late Baron Hogan…" He pauses to take a sip of his wine. Speaking was thirsty work after all. "There is little more to report right now, I am still waiting to hear what a few others have found out, but there is something that I think might be important. When I visited with the Baroness, I noticed that she had paintings of her family, in one painting, the entire family was on displayed. Both the Baron and Baroness have dark hair. Their two oldest children have dark hair. The youngest has blonde hair. Baroness Victoria made claims that her child never darkened, but I am not convinced. Is this possible motivation for Robert's death? Perhaps. She admitted that they were not close, that the Baron preferred to spend his time here at court while she preferred to stay at her home with her children and read. Regardless, I am curious to find out the identity of that child's father."

Martyn inclines his head to both Jaren and Tristan. "Thank you, and yes, that was why I was so eager to make the toast, I could barely hold in the news," then he reaches out and puts his hand on Clara's. "We would have told you sooner but the midwife was only just sure and this dinner was the perfect opportunity to share with everyone," he gives his sister's hand a quick squeeze before turning to the Queen. "It's not a hardship cousin, Greenmeadow is recovering nicely and the servants should have the Aquilla stench off the walls any day now," he says with a chuckle of the former holders of the county. His eyebrows raise as Tristan says he has ideas for the county. "Yes, I have some suggestions for who might make a good replacement as well," he adds edgewise before falling silent at the talk of Baron Hogan, though he scowls a bit at the suggestion of infidelity. "Disgusting, do you really think the woman whelped some man's bastard and passed it off as Robert's?"

"Many of your Baron's are somewhat newly placed in their roles, and many Lordships remain vacant. As difficult and terrible as it has been, Rivana has been through painful change. But I choose to believe the worst is behind us. It will never be easy…" Jaren chuckles a bit, "Because we Rivanans are strong and proud by nature…but we will find peace. Or we will make it." Jaren's last statement isn't intended to sound threatening, though it might be taken that way. "We have loyal Barons. There may be no immediately ideal option, but then we just look for the strongest candidate from those remaining." Jaren does seem to be using the "we" more comfortably, at least. Alysande may certainly not want a King that tries to outpace her, but she's made it clear she doesn't want just a breeding stud, either. So…he's trying. And now probably ruined his carefully-crafted man of few words reputation.

He does grimace at the mention of Baron Hogan, though listening closely to the circumstances. "In truth it would not surprise me. I'd noticed my Uncle spent much time apart from his wife, particularly in recent years. But he was proud. He'd never have allowed the knowledge of an illegitimate child to become public, and for all his bluster, he was a Cassomir…he'd sooner raise the boy as his own than cast him out." He shrugs, "But it's all mostly speculation at this point."

Alysande frowns. "But the Baroness's children are all grown now. The youngest… what, 19, 20? If not already knighted, will be soon enough, I'm sure." She sighs. "Cousin, make inquiries where you must, but try not to destroy this poor lad's life and reputation without proof." She shakes her head.

Tristan glances over at Martyn, nodding slightly, though he shifts in his seat. He really doesn't care that the woman had a bastard, his interests were more in whether or not the child or the child's father had any link in the Baron's death. "I think it is quite likely." He taps his fingers thoughtfully on the table, his head tilted towards Jaren as the man speaks. He almost nearly wants to roll his eyes. He would say something about how the strongest candidate is not always the best candidate, but now probably wasn't the time for debate. Instead he offers a nod to Alysande. "Of course, I have no interest in doing that, well, not unless he was the one responsible."

Martyn shakes his head. "Yes, discretion would be best here both for the boy and for Baron Hogan's reputation, it does no good to put horns upon a man's gravestone," he concludes. "So then did the Baroness give any indication who the man might be, other than a fair haired man that is."

Alysande nods slightly. "Well, with that business out of the way, and speaking of Tracano futures…" she beams oh-so-happily at Tristan.

Oh so happily.

"It seems our most wayward cousin is growing up. He made the most wonderful request of me the other day… one I never thought would come."

"Tristan wants me to find him a wife." She pauses to let that sink into the rest of the family.

Jaren blinks a few times at Alysande, then glances to Tristan, then looks back to Alysande. "You're…not jesting."

He glances back to Tristan, brow upraised again, "Well…I'll confess that is a bit of a surprise."

A giggle escapes from Clara's throat as her brown eyes shift to find Tristan. "I knew it! The way you chortled on that wine when I ventured that guess on marriage…" She covers her mouth with a hand, but fails to hide the growing smile behind her fingers.

"Not at all." Tristan says in response to Martyn's question. "She said that her son simply did not darken like the others. I did not wish to continue to press her though. If she is innocent in her husband's death, I think it would be best to handle her delicately."

He senses what is about to come and then swallows, steeling himself for the worst. Yep. She's done it. She just had to do it here too… of all the places. Offering a faint smile, he shrugs and says, "I suspect it will be quite some time before someone offers up their daughter for me though. I am safe. For a while."

"One be praised! At last," Martyn says with a look thrown skywards. "It is long since time you settled down coz, you have no idea how long it took me to get Lord Sandoval to calm down after that talk of his daughters," he says speaking of the encounter in the garden. The Sandovals were after all sworn to Greenmeadow. "Though yes, I do suspect it will take time for our royal cousin to find a w-," a cough, "Suitable match."

Jaren actually laughs briefly at Tristan's assurances that he's safe. "Don't be so sure. Within less than two weeks of the announcement of my betrothal to Lyssa, I received a half dozen inquiries about Emilia where none had come before." He scowls a bit, shaking his head slightly, "And damn near every one tempted me to visit them in person to explain quite emphatically what I thought of their very poor attempts to disguise the fact that they had far less interest in Emilia than in my impending title."

"Oh please. It's not that surprising. It's not the first time, though at least this time he's not suggesting a match I have to decline," Alysande says with a half-smile, then shoots Tristan an apologetic look. "And you'd be surprised how many offers I get for you regularly," she shrugs. "Just none with any real benefit to me or this house."

She nods at Jaren's words. "You're a Prince, Tristan… albeit one with a… ah, colorful reputation. Don't fret. You'll be wed within months of Jaren and I."

The youngest Tracano at the table is certainly enjoying the conversation. But…then…there is a quick realization that dawns on Clara, and she actually pales just slightly, though not without a bashful grin upon her lips. "I…just realized that, once a suitable match is found for Tristan, there is one more left to match." With a slight smirk, she turns to Alysande. "Please, feel free to take your time finding Tristan his match. The longer, the better. I am sure we both are in no major hurry."

"That man deserved that!" Tristan says to Martyn, not feeling any pity for the man that wanted to call into question Alysande's decision making. Still, probably not polite conversation at the table. His gaze shifts to Jaren, and he frowns. The frown deepens at Alysande's words. Sure, he decides to ignore the heartache that was Alina, but the other comments. "-That- soon?" The words come out a little breathlessly. "I assumed that giving you that letter that… ah, well, it would take quite some time." He stares at her now as he asks, "Just how long have you been waiting for this to happen?"

At Clara's words, he gives her a very thankful look.

Martyn shakes his head at most of the conversation but does nod to Clara "Too true , sister, you're next on the block," he teases lightly with a brief nudge to the girl's side. His attention to Tristan is of a less jovial sort. "Deserved or not, it makes ripples in the pond and it reflects upon the family. So, forgive me if I am glad you'll soon have a woman who can hopefully keep your mouth," a pause and a glance towards his wife and the Queen "And other bits from dragging our name through the gutter." A second pause follows. "Bah, forgive me, this is meant to be a pleasant family dinner and I spoke in haste. But coz, I do hope whatever girl Aly finds for you is a good one and makes you a good and decent wife, worthy of respect."

"Heh." Jaren chuckles softly at Clara's realization, grinning just a touch over the rim of his winecup. "Have you met my brother Devlin, Clara?" Jaren notes with such sincere mock-innocence that one might not realize he's entirely joking, even beyond the political impracticality of such a match with his marriage to Alysande impending.

Alysande chuckles at Clara. "I'm still deciding what is best for you," she admits. "Stay in, marry out? And until I decide at least that much, you have little to worry of."

She looks to Tristan. "Yes, That Soon. Our house needs replenishment. Martyn is doing his duty by the house, and One knows when Jaren and I wed I will… if I haven't already," she notes dryly, glancing to Jaren. She has the grace, at least, to blush slightly as she admits as much.

"I have three matches for you that I'm considering. Only three. I require certain things of a match, and I've been scouring for such for well over a year… does that answer you on how long I've waited? And the first time you bring up the idea, you want to marry out, and to a Couveri…" and Alysande's expression hardens recalling the girl at the Couveri coronation festivities, "who played you for a fool and likely would have simply killed you once she was done using you."

Her aggravation is cut short by Jaren's tease. "Oooooooooooh!" she interjects. "Devlin and Clara would be adorable together!! Too bad the politics… well… it wouldnt work."

Clara does blush as she takes her brother's good-natured elbow lightly in her ribs. She shifts to take a sip from her cup before her, but Jaren's question catches her off-guard. "Delvin? I…I don't believe I have had the pleasure." She is being rather sincere with the comment, not quite catching the jest. Not that it matters much, as her attention shifts when Alysande speaks. "Well, I am sure I would be agreeable to whatever you decide." She finally takes a sip from that cup, silencing whatever commentary she may have had further on the subject.

Martyn's words cause a number of thoughts to run into Tristan's head. Thoughts on the variety of ways to respond to the man for his tone. Particularly appropriate would be to remark about how his mouth, especially his tongue, would be kept quite occupied. No. The man was being an ass, but he was right that this should be a pleasant little get-together. Sadly, it was becoming a little less pleasant for Tristan, especially as Alysande decides to speak up on Alina once more. He never liked hearing it, especially since he still had some feelings for the woman.

"Yes, it answers my question, but I do not believe that Alina would have killed me or was using me. No. Her or her father would have killed me for a number of other reasons." He seems rather calm about that fact, still though, he is annoyed at everything right now, so he keeps talking. "Regardless of that, I loved her. Like everything else I come to love and care for, it seems to slip through my fingers." He shakes his head, trembling slightly. "It is easy to forget now, but I recall when Alina and I were warning people of a plot against both of our kingdoms, far before anyone else would have suspected anything of the sort. I also recall us working together to try and do what we could."

He snorts out a laugh then, shaking his head. "There are paths I would walk that I doubt many others would in order to see Rivana hold a place of pre-eminence in the Edge, and the events of the last year came close to it."

Martyn does frown self-consciously at Tristan's words and upon seeing the obvious sorrow the man is in. "Perhaps another subject would be best?" he offers to the table glancing around.

Jaren doesn't comment on Alysande's "if I haven't already" remark, beyond giving her a brief, wry expression. Embarrassed? Doesn't seem so. But then again he usually hides that sort of thing well. The famed Cassomir stoicism, put to good(?) use. "So..Martyn, Johanna…given thought to names yet?" Yep, changing the subject, certainly. Maybe a little embarrassed.

And then Tristan speaks up, and brings a frown to Jaren's face. Everyone here has faced loss over these past several years, but he's not inclined to get into any sort of one-upmanship contest. Instead he simply notes, "For all her family's devious reputation, I believe the Lady Alina does carry a degree of honor and more than a degree of loyalty within her. Perhaps a creative interetation of the former, but there is a certain nobility in being willing to sacrifice ones' reputation and good name for the good of one's realm." He nods to Martyn, "Yes. that might be for the best."

<FS3> Martyn rolls Perception: Good Success. (1 5 7 3 7 7 3 5 5 6 3 2)
<FS3> Tristan rolls Perception: Good Success. (5 6 3 1 2 3 8 7 1 7 2 2 2 2 1 1)
<FS3> Clara rolls Perception: Good Success. (2 6 8 4 3 2 3 6 4 6 7)
<FS3> Jaren rolls Perception: Good Success. (4 1 5 3 3 7 6 6 7 1 4 3 2 6 4 6)

Alysande mutters something under her breath about the girl throwing herself at that 'other champion', but drops off quickly when she espies Tristan's reaction. "Oh, coz." She gives him a sad look. "I hope the wife i find you helps heal some of that pain." She never doubted Tristan loved Alina, of course. It was the other way she doubted.

"Yes," she agrees. "A new subject. Names? Oh, are you hoping for a son or a daughter?"

"I cannot promise that I will love her…" Tristan says, before picking up his wine and finishing the rest of it, "I will do what I can to honor her though, and believe it or not, remain faithful to her. She will deserve that much from me, at least." He gives a slight shrug, then a faint smile as he adds: "I guess all I can ask is that she is at least easy on the eyes."

There isn't anything spoken from Clara in regards to the l'Saigner. She certainly could, but it is rather apparent to her that it is a touchy subject, and wisely chooses to not even attempt to address it at all. Instead, she latches onto the topic of pending babies. "Oh, I am sure Martyn would hope for a son, so that he may pass on his knightly sensibilities and such….and Johanna most likely would like a girl, for precisely the same reasons." Then….with a wicked little grin, Clara finishes her thought. "So…there is only one logical solution. One of each!"

Martyn steers well clear of the topic of Alina and instead laughs at his sister "Twins would be welcome, but I am not sure Johana would agree she's the one who must do all the work," he says with a fond smile to his wife. "As for names we haven't decided yet, though we do still have time," he says.

He turns to Tristan then "Respect and faithfulness is a good start," he says. "The rest will come in time."

"Ha! A set of twins would certainly be a great blessing for House Tracano." Jaren notes with a chuckle, "So here's hoping, eh?" He lifts his cup once more.

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