(1866-07-19) Stable Alliances
Stable Alliances
Summary: Esyld and Angelique meet properly for the first time.
Date: 1866-07-19
Related: None
Angelique  Esyld  

Stables — Highwater Castle
The stables at Highwater.
Juiliet 19th 1866

Late afternoon sees a relative calm settle over the castle; with most of her servants busy preparing the evening meals for the ruling family and any guests they may have, now that the region is, for the most part, peaceful once more. But not everyone has the luxury of dining with the highborn. Some have work to be done, at all hours of the day. Having arrived earlier to the stables with a hobbling horse in tow, Captain Draven is still here, as the night begins to draw in. The occasional muttered curse is audible to any who pass by, the Fox being currently bent double, wrapping a thick poultice in place upon the animal's hoof. He's not her own, thankfully… Esyld's destrier is infamously foul-tempered and she certainly wouldn't have a groom willing to stand and hold him while she worked. Still, between the cursing, she murmurs low-throated platitudes to the creature, now and then shifting her weight; his weighty hoof balanced on one thigh as she sees to her task.

Being Noble is not always the sinecure one might imagine. Especially when one chooses to serve as a Wraith. Such is the case when the patter of light hooves announce the arrival of another rider. She is tall, clad for the Road and Wood; soft boots, leather breeches, soft blouse and jerkin, cloak and jaunty hat. All in dark browns and black. She dismounts is some skill, not necessarily that of one born to the saddle, but showing good training. She leads the black gelding in, stoking its glossy neck. She gives instructions to the groom, but stays helping the man with her harness, and the settling of her mount. Now, up close one can see the dark, gleaming braid trailing down her back, the rapier and daggers at her side.
"M'lady, my thanks for the help, most do not care so." Angel smiles, for once a gentle thing, even for the showing of her white teeth. "Ah, Master Renee' I know will take care of Raoul, but I would be less that dutiful to not see to my friend here, he has carried me leagues though storm and dust…" Her voice is dark, soft and smoky. But, again, there is that fleeting and so-rare warmth in it.

The dark-haired Captain glances up idly as the new arrival is led by and into a neighbouring stable; her own charge being held calmly in an open stall, seeing as the straw would prove a nuisance for the want of clean soles. The gelding is given a cursory glance - it's habit, when one spends their life around animals of quality - but she doesn't otherwise interject, being busy with the task at hand. The heavy charger in her care heaves a sigh, content to munch loudly on the hay brought to keep him occupied.. though the groom in attendance looks thoroughly bored, having been standing for ages, rope in hand.

Maybe Esyld senses it, with the eyes in the back of her head that all women seem to possess. Truly, she could be addressing either him or the horse. "Almost done.." Unable to help overhearing that it's a noble being addressed next door, the Captain frowns ever so slightly, most likely itching to see who it may be.. but diligent. Tying off a thick bandage to hold the warm, dampened padding in place, she at last lowers the horse's enormous foot to the ground, straightening with a soft groan for her aching muscles. Stooping is bad. "Thank you." This is offered as gratitude and dismissal to her assistant, who seems more than happy to hand over the rope and make a hasty retreat, maybe in search of some fare from the kitchens.

Patting the sturdy horse's muscular neck and looping his rope loosely through a ring, the mercenary leaves him be for now, stepping out to the main hall and approaching a nearby rain barrel, no doubt needing to freshen up her hands after all that.

The gelding is no Destrier, he is however a superb animal, obviously well care for despite the dust from the long road. Her glance back shows a tall, striking young woman with tawny eyes; her face is oddly familiar, the association likely dances just on the edge of thought.
Her mount seen to, judging from the sounds of munching and a contented whicker, Angel turns away, saddlebags and bowcase across slim shoulders, in time to note the Soldier stepping into the hall before her, they might have collided save the woman stops and steps back gracefully, with dancers movements.&rAgain that nagging sense of having seen her before despite the fact she know she has not…"Pardon, Captian. I did not see you.." Angels tones are courteous, her voice soft. It appears that she, at least, might know or guess to whom she speaks. "It is a warm doy for such work…for travel as well." Red lips curve into half-smile. Perhaps a touch of the Devil in those lioness eyes…

Likewise taking a half-step to avoid the near collision - though with less grace - the raven-haired mercenary inclines her head politely, eyes automatically downcast and remaining so even as she's closing the distance to that barrel. A cup of both palms brings a splash of cool water over her features, another over each forearm, given that the sleeves of her black tunic are shoved up to the elbows, for the sake of practicality. As she's further addressed, however, Esyld raises her head, straightening from a slight lean over the water-barrel and opens her eyes to regard the woman in the hall.

Well, if her presence and attire hadn't already apparently hinted toward her identity, those eyes put any doubts to rest; infamous throughout Lonnaire, if somewhat moreso amongst the absurdly superstitious. A dizzying, unnatural shade of blue, they lend the Captain an appearance of ferocity that is surely not her intent, especially given the passive nature of her expression. Spitting a little water free of her lower lip, still rubbing her hands together to rid her fingers of the grime lingering there, she speaks in return after a moment's hesitation. "M'Lady. Aye, it's warm.. but I hope your journey was a pleasant one, all the same." Not one to feign knowledge when it may be lacking, she dusts off her hands a last time on the lower hem of her thigh-length shirt before adding, by way of enquiry, "..I apologise but it seems you have me at a disadvantage." She vaguely recognises the woman, but would rather be sure of herself than risk offense by getting it wrong.

If Esyld's eyes startle her, the Wraith has far too much control to show it. Or perhaps she has seen them before. Angel's smile grows, warmly. "No Apologies needed, Captain Draven. I know of you, I scouted for your company during the Raid. It was my duty to remain unseen, so…" This last said most softly, voice just carrying enough. The woman gives an eloquent shrug. She does a courtesy, smoothly, despite the gear she carries. "Lady Angelique t'Corbeau, I think you know my half-brother, Master Tybalt Devries?" There, that explains the familiarity, the two share those eyes, and accounting for differences in gender, that smile….
Angel shifts the bags, bow and quiver; black feathered arrow rustle against one another as she does.

"Ah, of course." This in response to the explanation of her place during the Raid, and accompanied by a nod of understanding. Things were so chaotic in Pacitta, it's little wonder the Captain's memories of it may be somewhat lacking in their usual coherence. "A pleasure, m'Lady." A more formal bow is given, in kind, for the curtsey. If the familial name bothers her, there's no trace of any such thing writ upon her features. The t'Maren rivalry with the house is, generally, merely competitive. Raking her slightly dampened tresses back with the fingertips of one hand as she straightens, Esyld settles to a more comfortable stance; folding her arms easily across her midsection.

The mention of that half-brother does, however, rouse a more obvious glimmer of recognition and.. amusement? in those vivid eyes. "Master Tybalt is your relation? What a small world, indeed. Yes, I know of him." She doesn't elaborate further, quite yet. After all, she can't know for sure that this noblewoman would exactly approve the nature of their meeting. How many noblewomen frequent bawdy, unruly taverns, after all.. let alone partake in the debauchery that sometimes goes hand in hand with such settings. Moving smoothly on, the noting of the bow and arrows offers a suitable tangent. "Have you been hunting, then? Or was your journey ahhh.. business rather than pleasure?" She knows certain Wraiths recently dealt with bandits in Blackfens.. maybe this is one of those?

"A pleasure indeed, Captain. You and yours did sterling work there. It was my first major engagement and I wished to do l'Saigner proud." Angel's smile flashes brightly, strong white teeth gleaming.
Esyld's reaction does not escape her sharp glance, her own lip quirk as she leans close. "I was in awe of him growing up, his stories were….not those my parents wished me to hear, but most educational. One could say he helped me find my path in life…" Her laugh is soft, musical.
At the mention of her gear, the smile becomes something far more suited to the great cat her eyes so remind on of. "Hunting…and business at once. It was successful, for us."

"Hmm.. no, I would imagine Master Tybalt's anecdotes would not be precisely the sort any parents would want their daughters to hear. Though no doubt educational, as you put it." Esyld relents to a soft, low-throated chuckle as she tries to imagine him being a role model for anyone, least of all a young Lady. Ah well, such is life. "And, so long as the outcome is one that brings you happiness, m'Lady, then what harm, I say. Especially when it is of benefit to the House we serve, hm?" The Captain glances aside as the chestnut mount she had been attending stamps once, loudly. Testing the odd feeling of his bandaged hoof, no doubt. But the poultice is well done and stays put, and the animal returns to his munching. The stables are otherwise quiet; sweetly scented with soaking barley and freshly-tossed straw.

Ahh, a hunting trip. Esyld's smile is subtly knowing, though her words seem genuine enough. "I am pleased you were successful, m'Lady. I had heard, upon my return, that your fellows had succeeded in putting an end to some troublesome brigands. Alas.. I myself was in the neighbouring province. Such damnable luck." Horse-shit. And probably precisely why the rumour of an ill-tempered meeting with the Commander circulates amongst the Wraiths. Still, it can't have been that bad. She's still in one piece.

"He was the only one I could not charm, so of course I listened." Angel laughs now, openly. Her is dark, low and soft, more felt than heard. She leans in again, voice soft. "It does indeed bring me joy. Doing what one is good at, and enjoys, for the benefit of the House." Her smile touches her tawny eyes. Then she is glancing to the mount, taking in the bandaged hoof. "That was well done…I envy you such skill. Mine, in relation to our mounts, far less though I do try to learn."
She considers the Hunt and the screams of those who sought to prey on those she was sworn to defend, her eyes distant, reliving it. Then Esyld speaks again, drawing her back. "Ah, unfortunate indeed. It was satisfying work… The Wraith has heard many rumors, indeed. Including one concerning the Captain and her Commander. Still, she was raised to be polite. "I wish you better luck in the future."

"Thank you, m'Lady." Esyld replies, following their glances toward the horse. "It's only a hot poultice.. not so different as you'd use on a man, really. He stood wrongly on a sharp stone and the puncture got infected. This is the best way to draw it out without damaging his hoof." There's an easiness about her, when it comes to matters of work. Oh, conversing comes easily enough, even with the nobility. But it's plain where her heart truly lies. Unsurprising, really, for a cavalry captain. "If it should ever happen to one of your own animals, m'Lady, I'd be gllad to show you how it's done. It's an invaluable trick, especially when far from home."

Offering the woman a quiet smile - she doesn't seem the sort to grin or laugh often, in fact - Esyld adjusts her weight as she listens. It's not that she's uncomfortable hearing about it.. she's over her fury at being deliberately left out, in regard to the bandits. More a general air of restlessness about her. It's quite usual for the mercenary, when she's lacking in pressing business. "We saw some action. I shouldn't envy you and yours some." Shouldn't. But probably does. "And so long as the job is done, it's really not my place to question how." Are these her own thoughts, or ones given to her by another? Who knows. "And now that you have returned, I imagine you'll be spending some time with your kin..?"

"Ah, I have seen that before and I should be thankful for such assistance Captain.." Angel pauses, evidently thinking. "such knowledge would be helpful be helpful, yes. I would wish to be able to help my mount…." She glances to the officer, considering her. Her own skills alchemical are geared more towards ending life….
Angel can sense her discomfort, and guesses as to the cause. She offers some consolation. "I am sure there were action and to spare for all of us before long. For all her ferocity to enemies, she can be quite considerate to allies and friends. Or even mounts. She finds her self liking this Captain, sympathizing with her need for action. <i>Is it not the same for me? I do so hate boredom….</I> Aloud, "My home is Three Rivers, the seat of our House. So, not yet. Still, I do enjoy my tours here. Some very good ale, especially after a long journey."

"I accompanied some caravans there, as a squire.." muses the blue-eyed woman, "I found it a most hospitable holding." A sincere compliment. Though, anywhere that isn't under a hedge on in a barn likely seems hospitable enough to Esyld. Her tastes are simple. It clearly gains her approval, too, that he Lady seems to have a care for her horse; so many lack consideration for the creatures, merely tossing the reins to a servant or groom and continuing on their way to more important things. It's a pity, in her opinion.

As for the thoughts of days to come, she hastens to say something further. "For certain, m'Lady.. peace, I have found, rarely lasts long. Though of course I do not wish for any ill fortune to befall us. Only that I'll have the opportunity to thwart it, should it try." With this comes one of those half smiles once more. But the mention of ale… Esyld shifts her stance a little, lowering her folded arms and absently tugging her linen shirt into some semblance of order. "I should not delay you any longer, m'Lady, for I am certain fresh-poured ale awaits you not far away. Besides, I should really get this donkey-eared fellow back to our own stables, before he thinks he's retiring here." A casual stride takes her to the animal's flank, which she pats solidly, earning a swish of tail and flicker of aforementioned (and admittedly large) ears, as if he were listening.

"I am glad you found it clement, I do as well but I am no doubt, rather inclined to do so." Her own smile echoes that of the Captain. She watches the interaction with the injured mount. She too does not understand the lack of care. If the beast is to carry one safely and far, at the very least one can but offer concern for its well being.
"Understood Captain, peace is desirable, but for those of…certain tastes, it is hard to bear." She sighs softly, liking the one. "Still, it is fleeting enough even without our wishes. I think there will be employ for us both for some time to come." She laughs at the mention of Ale. "Sometime, we can perhaps talk longer over a mug. I think I should enjoy that. Good luck with your charge, well met Captain." She offers a courtesy again, the begins to turn to leave but glances back over her shoulder. "Oh, do call me Angelique when we do, Titles and Ale, I find they do not go together…."

Having come to the horse's head, during their continued conversation, Esyld allows herself the barest hint of a grin as she busies herself checking the buckles on the large animal's halter. He seems placid enough, but you never can tell what might spook them, even on a sedate stroll back to the barracks. "I would like that, m'Lady. And well met, indeed." The captain casts her gaze sidelong toward the noblewoman long enough to politely incline her head in farewell, but she's already back to loosening the knot of the rope by the time the further words reach her. Only a quiet chuckle follows Angelique out into the dusk.

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