(1866-12-14) If You Want....
If You Want….
Summary: With a bit of a break in the tourney and so many other changes in their lives, Stephen finds a moment to speak with Emilia. And perhaps just a bit of understanding and a start of a more familial bond comes from it.
Date: 1866-12-14
Related: None Specifcally
Emilia  Stephen  

Sitting Room - Cassomir Manse - Sunsreach - Rivana
See scene…

Evening in the Cassomir Manse in Sunsreach, and Stephen Cassomir is recovering from the bruises he incurred during his disappointing showing in the Bareknuckle contest. Thankfully it wasn't TOO serious, and now he's apparently…reading. Just a random book selected from the modest library of the Manse. He's seated near the fire in one of the sitting rooms, just idly flipping through pages. An untouched goblet of wine rests on a sidetable nearby. He doesn't look quite as intent on it as he normally might though, for whatever reason. Perhaps a touch preoccupied.

The evening hour has another not quite settled in for the night yet as Emilia slips into the room. A pause upon the threshhold in seeing the room was already occupied. The young woman having shed the leathers with no plans to depart again, wearing the simplier tunic and leggings. Though her feet bare slippers instead of boots. There is a moment of indecision as dark eyes flit to the book she had left upon one of the other tables, before Emilia does continue into the room. Rather quietly at that, perhaps even unnoticeable til she is 'appearing' besides that side table by one of the chairs opposite where Stephen sits.

"Emilia. Hello." Stephen replies, glancing up when he finally catches the movement out of the corner of his eye, and smiling towards her, "How're you doing this evening?" He picks up a thin length of ribbon to mark his place in the book and sets it aside for now, "Please…sit, if you've some time. I've been meaning to get a chance to speak with you. Just seems with so much going on there hasn't been a chance." He pauses a moment, and frowns a bit, looking away…and distant…for a moment, "And that's a poor excuse…I'm sorry."

The fingers that had been reaching to pick up the book pause just a moment when she is 'caught'. "Of hello, I am being of sorry..I had forgotten of my book earlier." Any though to apologize if she was disturbing or intruding die before it crosses Emilia's lips with the offer to sit. "I am doing of well, and of yourself?" A brief moment pases before Emilia nods her head a little,"I have of some time." Drifting to settle into the chair, her movements baring that usual turn of ethereal grace. "All of the same, it is being of a valid of excuse, Count of Stephen. There has been much of going of on. And you of no doubt have had much to be getting of used." There is a mild tug to the corners of her lips,"And I am knowing most do not usually actually have wish for a chance to be of speaking with me. So there is not need to be of sorry."

"Just Stephen. We're family now and I don't get the impression formality is too deeply held to among family here." Stephen replies, "And it's true, I've had a lot to adjust to, but I'm not the only one, am I?" He tilts his head, "And it's not a poor excuse because I had no wish to speak to you. It's a poor excuse because I've heard the same thing before, and I know how much it…made me uncomfortable, at the time." A pause, "No…uncomfortable wasn't the right word. Angry. Hurt." He shakes his head, "In any case, I felt like I should talk to you, and sooner rather than later, because I know you've had a lot to adjust to in these past weeks, as well."

"You are of correct, we do not hold to of deeply to formality about of family, but I had not of wished to of be presumptuous in being of…familiar, Stephen." Emilia nod her head a little,"Of true, you are not of the only of one who has had to be of adjusting. " A small cant to her head occurs as she listens before Emilia agrees softly,"Can of understand of that, even of still an excuse is not being of a poor of one if it is of a valid of one. Even if of being of valid and one can be of understanding of the reasons…it does not always of stop of the anger of hunt in of turn. Emotion and of logic, not always of meshing as we might of like." Her fingers lightly toy along the edge of the book for a moment. "There has been of a lot to of adjust of to, of aye. It will take of time, as it will for of you. " A slight pause occurs,"Was there something in of particular you had wished to speak to me about?"

"Yes." Stephen notes, "I…don't want to dredge up unpleasant memory, but while I don't know the details of what occurred at Ironhold…and don't need to, unless you or Raelyn want to share them…I do know firsthand what…" He pauses, reaching to take a gulp of wine to alleviate a suddenly-dry mouth, "What monsters are capable of when they have you at their mercy." He frowns, glancing over towards Emilia once more, "I…don't know if you had anyone to talk to in those weeks and months and even years afterwards. I hope you did. I…didn't. Not really. In some cases that was deliberate, in others it was circumstance, but it's not really important."

He shifts, clearly a bit uncomfortable, but it's not exactly the most pleasant memories for him either, "You seem to bear it all well…but you're quiet. You avoid attention and you disappear quickly when the opportunity arises. I just…want you to know that I think I know a bit of what you feel. Not exactly the same, obviously, but…similar. I know how…ashamed…I felt…afterwards. Worthless. Alone and abandoned. Angry that no one seemed to understand…or even want to. Bottling up the screams of anger every time they reminded you that you weren't the same person you once were, whether they meant to or not." He takes in a breath, and lets it out slowly, then glances up to Emilia and smiles, if a perhaps a bit weary one.

"I just want you to know…you don't have to talk about what happened. You don't have to do anything at all, if you don't want. But if you do want to talk…about anything, really. Or if you just…want someone to sit with you so you don't have to be…alone. I can…and will… do that. I know I can't replace your brother…." He laughs, a touch ruefully, "Who could, given who your brother is? But I hope…that if you wish it…I can be a brother to you."

"Not many know of the details of what occured at Ironhold," says Emilia, softly and simply. It was a truth, very few did truly know of what occured. Canting her head a little as she studies him in with that stoic way of hers,"Cannot dredge up of something that is always of there." Something of an admission perhaps to be found in those words. A small nod was given,"There were of some…to talk to. A few….most..well of most..preffered to just keep of away from me." A number, perhaps, still did.

A faint not comes, to Stephen's words, Emilia could not disbute it. She was quiet..and did disappear. And well..none could truly know..understand. She hesitates a moment before she asks softly,"But you don't of feel of that way of any more, of aye? Worthless and of alone?" A slight pause before there is another question,"Does of anyone still of remind you that you are not of the same of person?"

Her gaze drops to the book in her lap, and enough time passes that one might think there is risk that Emilia has gone 'quiet'. But finally she does speak,"I need of it sometimes….someone to just be of there…to of distract, in of a way. I have…nightmares of still. Not of like..in of the beginning." Her eyes come up and there is a faint tug at the corners of her lips, what he perhaps knows to be about as much of a smile ever graces her features,"I am of afraid, you are likely to hear when there are being of particularly bad." A slight nod of comes,"Of true…he cannot be of replaced," none of her brothers really could be. "I think..I would like of that, to have of another of brother. If you are of sure you are not minding to have of me as a sister?" A small breathe before she does offer,"Or even just of someone to talk of to…as I am of knowing what monsters are of capable of. And of know…not everyone of knows, even if they try to of understand."

"No, not anymore. Not usually, anyway." Stephen smiles a touch ruefully, "But it took a lot of work until I reached that point. Because yes…it's always there." He laughs, though it's with gentle humor and not bitterness. Well OK only a tiny bit of bitterness, "Even this silly tourney…after losing so swiftly there was certainly a…moment. Fearing I'd embarrassed my new family the way I feared I had shamed my birth family." He shakes his head, taking another sip of wine, glancing towards the fire.

"Now? Not too many people around remind me that I'm not the same…but most people here didn't know me before." He notes with a glimmer of genuine amusement in his expression. "Then again, I was always pretty quiet. My Mother well…I respect her greatly, but she wasn't usually one you wanted to gain the attention of if you could avoid it." He shrugs a shoulder, a rueful smirk touching his features before he continues.

"I'm sure I don't mind. I…" He glances around, "There's a…warmth to your family that mine didn't have. I was close with Thad and Jo. Not as much Jon and Kat. But even within those bonds…we all seemed to often feel and act like we were more "Eleanor Greycen's children" than "each other's siblings."" He shakes his head slightly, "I don't know if that makes any sense, but that's what it felt like. Anyway…" He makes a dismissive gesture, then grows a bit more serious, though there's still a glimmer of a smile to his face, if touched by a bit of sadness, "I still have nightmares too, sometimes. Not as often as I did…but sometimes. Raelyn's seen me bolt up in a cold sweat once already. Or simply not be able to sleep."

A hint of curiosity perhaps comes to those dark brown eyes, it was a rare thing for Emilia to not be reminded. "There was not of embarrsing of us, though I think Raelyn is planning of more of training for you. But she, and I, thought you did of well…especially since you had not much of competed before."

There is a slight nod,"I have..heard such of things about your of mother," she did have a reputation! Well earned at that. "There are not too of many who knew of me before..of either….But.." Emilia shrugs a little bit,"people know something of happened…and it is 'obvious' to them I am being of broken. Especially if I am not being of quiet."

There is actually a hint of an actual smile, the corners of those lips raising just a bit, and not in a tugging motion. "There is much of warmth within of our family. Even of before…" a breathe of a pause before Emilia continues,"But of now…family is of important, we are of close and would do much of anything for one of another." There is understanding in those dark eyes when there is the talk of nightmares. "I have nights I cannot of sleep, or should of not….But worry of not…Raelyn is used to being woken of up by some of my nightmares," the lovely screams when the worst comes.

"Not the way I'd prefer to be keeping her awake." Stephen notes wryly, then blinks, his cheeks reddening a bit, "Ah…sorry, that just slipped out." He chuckles, and finishes off his wine. "And now, for once, I'm going to be the one bidding you good night, as I plan on soaking a bit before bed." He rises to his feet, and steps over to briefly place a hand on Emilia's shoulder, giving her a smile, "If there's anything you need…I'll be nearby, Sister." Another glimmer of a smile, and a nod, and Stephen turns to depart the room.

A brow rises just a little bit as /that/ does slip out, but as one might expect that is about all that changes in that stoic expression of Emilia's. Worse perhaps is that she shrugs and actually manages to say,"I am of sure that is not of her preffered of method of either." Inclining her head as he doe move to take his leave,"Have of a good of soak and good of evening." Looking up as his hand comes to her shoulder, one of those tugging smiles given,"Of thanking…I will be of remembering of that, Brother." Some time perhaps spent contemplating the fire yet after Stephen departs, before Emilia herself moves to retire to her room.

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