Author Topic: [RP] A beginning in Lancaster  (Read 4185 times)

(RIP) Aiiane Grey

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Re: [RP] A beginning in Lancaster
« Reply #15 on: 17 June, 2017, 02:15:04 PM »
Having arrived in Cairo, Aiiane first made her way directly to the tournament field in order to deliver the armor and weapons required by her liege.  She was given permission to leave her cart stored with the King's possessions until such time as she was ready to make the return trip home.  Thus freed of his cumbersome burden, Crutch cavorted a bit with one of the pages.  She exchanged pleasantries with a number of the King's court who had accompanied him to the tourney, gathering information about the bouts which had finished earlier that day and how the contestants fared.  Aiiane was happy to learn that His Highness would advanced, having won his bout.  After a short while, she snapped her fingers and Crutch immediately trotted to her side.  It was time to see to her lodgings for the evening and to see if she could find the man she was to meet to purchase her gold supplies for her shop.

Having barely entered the market area, a well-dressed, well-groomed man approached her.  The thought did cross her mind that this might be the vendor she sought, but how could he possibly recognize her?  They had only communicated through missives sent back and forth through couriers.  But no, as he began to speak, it was to shower her with compliments which made her cheeks grow pink.  Never had she heard such flowery phrases directed at her.  He continued on with, “My name is Pierre du Vallon, the Baron de la Roche, Constable and Captain of Her Majesties Royal Guards in France.  It is a pleasure to make your acquaintance."

Ah, a man of some circumstance, she thought, but before she could return his salutation, he continued on.  Apparently he was in a great hurry for no sooner had her eyes drifted towards the plate of food he indicated for Crutch, did he take his leave and depart.  Bemused, she grinned down at her dog, who had quietly moved between her at the stranger, although he had not shown any sort of aggression.  “What think you, Crutch?  Was not that a most interesting encounter?  Pierre du Vallon”, she let the name roll,  off her tongue, attempting to match his accent, “I wonder if all French are thus?”  Crutch had no comment, availing himself of the donated food.

As she waited for the dog to finish his meal, she looked about and eventually spied a sign that hopefully meant she had found her gold-seller.  Crutch belched, causing Aiiane to look at him with some amusement.  “You shouldn't gulp your food so.  You shall make yourself ill with such table manners”, she laughed at him, “now let us go transact our business so we can make our way to the inn.  What was that name again?”  Crutch looked up at her with a quizzical look upon his furry face.  “Ah yes, El Sabil, they said it was.”

Later, she found the inn which had been recommended by one of the King's companions and much to her surprise found that her lodgings had been paid for.  She signed the register in her neat hand, Lady Aiiane Grey, Lancaster, England.  Greatly puzzled, she wondered had King Soldano made the arrangements as she made her way upstairs, but upon gaining her room she noticed the bottle and the note.  Reading it, she blushed again.  It would appear as though M'lord du Vallon was responsible for her largess.  Whatever would the good rector think, Aiiane mused, remembering the man who had instructed her in her youth.  His tutelage had been much practiced of late, even though he had always been of the opinion she would never be pressed to put into use the lessons of deportment, address and bearing.  She sniffed the bottle, the aroma was not unpleasant, but she decided against imbibing strong drink before having her evening meal.

After refreshing herself and settling Crutch down for the evening, she descended the stairs and entered the public area, taking a seat in the corner and placing an order for her food.  What a very strange day, she mused, thinking once more of the man in the market place.  Soon the food was brought and others entered, finding tables, looking for their own suppers.  Talk of the tournament filled the room and Aiiane soon got caught up listening to the recounting of the deeds during the bouts and the very tall tales being bandied about, causing her to chuckle softly to herself from time to time.  Eventually  the thoughts of the man faded into the quiet recesses of her mind.

(RIP) Aiiane Grey

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Re: [RP] A beginning in Lancaster
« Reply #16 on: 18 June, 2017, 08:16:33 PM »
Having learned the date and time of His Majesty's next bout, Aiiane decided to take one more day's respite from her travels so that she could attend the tourney, hopefully supporting her liege to victory.  It would be her first opportunity to view such an event, one too rare to pass upon.

After breaking fast, she and Crutch made their way to the docks, for although she had enjoyed her trek across many countries, she wished to make for home with a more direct route, and that would be by sea.  The harbor master's office was bustling with activity, even this early in the morning, and it took some time before Aiiane could make her arrangements.  However, the harbor master was most solicitous, going to such lengths to send Aiiane with a dock hand to view the ship and the accommodations which would bear her to England.  This was a much larger ship than the two she had previously sailed and she found her berth to be most satisfactory.  Having bespoke her passage, she made her way into the town and the market square. 

Much enticed her there, but being frugal all her life, she was loath to spend on needless items.  Yet she could not pass upon a scarf of airy silk and as green as the color of the sea she had sailed over on the way to Alexandria.  When the vendor arranged the scarf over Aiiane's hair and around her neck, she gave Aiiane a looking glass to view the results.  Aiiane's hazel eyes were now as green as the scarf!  Her eyes had taken on the color closest to her face.  She could not resist smiling at her reflection before gently removing the scarf, lest she damage it.  A bit of haggling took place before the deal was struck, but both women were satisfied with the transaction.

She eventually returned to the inn to rest so that she might be refreshed for the afternoon's festivities, requested and received parchment, quill and ink.  As Crutch stretched himself out in a shady spot of the room, Aiiane sat at the desk and crafted a careful letter to her very generous benefactor.

Quote
18 June 1317

M'lord du Vallon,

Please accept my gracious thanks for your most kind generosity.  While I must admit, had you been present, it would not have become me to accept such largess, it does not mean I would be any less grateful.

I have yet to sip the mulberry brandy which you have bestowed upon me and I desire that you not think me ungrateful if I refrain from partaking of, what I am sure,  an exquisite liqueur until I return home to England so that I might share with friends.

Should you find yourself in Lancaster, know that I will most willingly open my home to you.

Your servant,
Lady Aiiane Grey
Knight of the Red Rose
Tower Guardian of Lancaster
England

Using a bit of melted wax from the candle, she imprinted her crest, which had been delicately carved into a signet ring by herself in her shop.

The outside was address thus:
Lord Pierre du Vallon
Baron de la Roche
Constable and Captain of Her Majesties Royal Guards
France

It was hoped that would be enough information for the missive to reach it's proper destination.  On the morrow, she would set it to be delivered through a courier.

(RIP) Aiiane Grey

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Re: [RP] A beginning in Lancaster
« Reply #17 on: 20 June, 2017, 01:20:53 AM »
(ooc)::  There will be a short break in the story while the author is on vacation.

(RIP) Aiiane Grey

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Re: [RP] A beginning in Lancaster
« Reply #18 on: 04 July, 2017, 09:58:41 PM »
Tears slid down slender cheeks from sea-green eyes, made so only by the scarf which draped over her head and shoulders.  Her King had won his bout, but alas, due to a misunderstanding of the rules he had been wearing inappropriate armor.  When he discovered the error, he had declared himself disqualified – an action which made Aiiane proud to be part of a country with such a ruler, but brokenhearted for her liege.  She felt sure he would have been victorious to the finish.

With a last few sniffles, she dried her eyes with her handkerchief and motioned Crutch to come.  The rest of the afternoon was spent packing her cart so that on the morrow they could set sail to England.  She was in a somber mood and the festivities which continued around her now grated where they had once caused her heart to be merry.  The tent where she had left her cart was one of many erected by the King's court and the offending helmet  - one which she had brought, much to her ever-lasting sorrow, lay upon a carpet, along with other pieces of equipment, ready for packing.  When she finished her task, Aiiane gave the thing a vicious kick, which relieved some of the tension she was feeling, but not the strange sense of guilt she felt.  Observing his mistress' behavior, Crutch approached the helmet and growled at it menacingly before following Aiiane from the tent.

A light supper was taken in her room and she watched the sun set.  The colors were fierce and bright, unlike the soft shades of the sunsets in England.  Crutch laid his head in her lap and she scratched around his ears absentmindedly.  While her travels had been interesting and, granted, she would not mind doing so again, Aiiane yearned for England, Lancaster and home.  The long voyage home would give her time to make plans, one being the start of a farm.  The expectations of things to come revived her spirits somewhat, for she was never one to be prone to melancholy.  She prepared for bed and soon, she and Crutch were fast asleep.

(RIP) Aiiane Grey

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Re: [RP] A beginning in Lancaster
« Reply #19 on: 07 July, 2017, 04:07:57 AM »
The trip home had been quite uneventful and it was a very happy and exciting homecoming.  Lord Lancaster was there to greet her and escort her to the castle, directing the port hands to deliver her luggage to her Tower house.  Smoothing down her skirt, Aiiane thanked providence for the sudden notion to refresh herself before disembarking, pleased that she presented a clean and neat appearance.

There was a feast in her honor for her service to the King.  His Majesty had sent along a personal gift to her which was presented after the meal but before the festivities and it made her both glad and a little guilty.  Aiiane still felt some responsibility for that most disobliging helmet, but apparently the King held no ill will towards her, for which she was most grateful.

The evening stretched into the early morning hours.  Both Aiiane and Crutch had over indulged in the rich foods and Aiiane, unused to so many cups of wine, struggled to keep her head from spinning like a whirlwind as she was escorted home by both Crutch and a number of Lord Lancaster's men.  Once safely within the confines of her room, Aiiane sank upon her bed, fully clothed, held up her hand in the moonlight streaming through her window and admired the cool blueness of the sapphire that sparkled upon her finger.  It was the second piece of jewelry she could call her own, the first being the locket that her mother had given her, and although it was very dear to her, it was not as elegant a piece as was the ring.  Her last thought before falling into a deep sleep was the need to find a safe place for her treasure.

(RIP) Aiiane Grey

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Re: [RP] A beginning in Lancaster
« Reply #20 on: 08 July, 2017, 03:59:42 AM »
Her life seeming to be traveling at the same rate as a shooting star.  She stood by the cow byre, the scroll in her hand, gazing across the countryside with unseeing eyes, her mind trying to encompass the startling news brought by the courier.  Aiiane had read the message once, then twice and then thrice to make sure her eyes had not deceived her the first time.  But no, the words were very clear and understandable.  She was to accompany the King to a wedding which would be held in the country of Sweden.  When Aiiane finally became capable of thought, the first one was whatever would she wear?  While she had carefully upgraded her wardrobe as she had gained status in Lancaster, she had nothing to compare to those gowns she had seen on the women who had accompanied their men in the King's entourage at the tournament.

In her early days, she had worked under the tutelage of Lord Gwynedd's tailor in his shop, thinking perhaps this might be her calling.  Perhaps he would have some fabrics with which to fashion appropriate clothing, but time was so short.  Only as she hurried toward the Tower did she remember several dresses wrapped carefully with yards of linen to keep the dust from them, which had been commission by a high ranking Lady.  Unfortunately she had met her demise before taking possession of the gowns.  Should they need adjustments to fit Aiiane, those would take far less time than having to create them from the start.

With a graceful motion of her hand, she indicated to Crutch that he was to continue on home, but she did an abrupt about-face and headed towards town and the tailor shop.
« Last Edit: 08 July, 2017, 04:42:39 AM by Aiiane Grey »

(RIP) Aiiane Grey

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Re: [RP] A beginning in Lancaster
« Reply #21 on: 08 July, 2017, 11:13:03 PM »
By Odin's Grace, the gowns need little alteration.  Aiiane was thankful that the Lady who had commissioned them had impeccable tastes.  The fabrics were rich, but the designs had been classic and all that could be found fault was that Aiiane was several inches taller than the woman for whom the dresses had been made.

The first gown was a pale green silk and the overskirt was ruffled.  There was no more of the original silk to be had, but several additional ruffles were added to the bottom of the skirt in ever slightly gradients of green, which did not detract from it's design.  The second gown was a deep gold brocade, complete with a trailing train.  The train was removed and it's material was used to lengthen the gown.  To hide the fact that it had been altered so, a wide silk ribbon of russet was sewn over the seam and then embellished with two thinner ribbons of the same color above and below the wide band.  It gave a very pleasing effect and Aiiane was happy with the results of both modifications.  Proper undergarments, hosiery and shoes were added to the cost of the alterations and what payment remained upon the gowns and put a sizable dent in Aiiane's purse.  But one could not scrimp when one was to be seen in the company of the King.

Back home, Aiiane continued to make preparations for the tending of her fields and care of Crutch.  Thankfully he had taken a liking to the lad whom Aiiane used from time to time when she needed assistance about her fields and farms and the boy was ecstatic that he was to be entrusted with Crutch's welfare.

By the following day, all was ready.  She had visited her shop early in the morning and selected two items she had crafted for sale, but which would now serve as wedding gifts.  For the man, it was a handsome hat clip of silver inlaid with onyx stones that had struck her fancy in the Cairo market.  The other was a delicately wrought broach featuring intricately entwined flowers and studded with bloodstone, also found in the markets during her travels.  She included several other items in her chest in case the King should find something which he felt would be a suitable gift, providing he had not already attended to that detail.

By mid-morning Aiiane and her baggage was headed towards London and His Majesty's ship.

(RIP) Aiiane Grey

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Re: [RP] A beginning in Lancaster
« Reply #22 on: 09 July, 2017, 07:16:39 PM »
Unbeknownst to Aiiane, while she was busy attending to her wardrobe a number of the good Lords of Lancaster had decided to gift her with an elegant gown for the festivities.  They all had been her mentors, guiding her in the ways of becoming a successful citizen and she was discovering that their kindness and generosity knew no bounds.

The light cart eventually caught the lumbering carriage and the small trunk was added to Aiiane's baggage.  The courier handed over a scroll to Aiiane before wishing her godspeed and safe journey.  The coach lurched into motion once more as she sat back against the cushions, thoughtfully provided by the post boy, and read the scroll, thus making it known of the contents of her newly acquired piece of luggage.  It brought tears to her eyes and a smile to her lips.  There was only one way she knew she could repay such largess and that was to represent Lancaster well as she traveled with the King and attended the wedding.  To this end, Aiiane tucked away the scroll and proceeded to reacquaint herself with the rector's teachings. 

As she relaxed and let her mind drift back to those early days, it was almost as if the rector was seated next to her and, just as in her earlier lessons, after the voice recited the intricacies of the noble household and of those who dwelt within, Aiiane would parrot each item or practice a gesture or respond with the appropriate response as was required.  All she could not do, such as practice walking or her curtsy must be reserved until such time as she had room to do so.  There should be plenty of time once she was aboard His Majesty's ship. 

Many hours later, she reflected upon perhaps the most important lesson of all.  Many, although not all the rector had stressed, had been born into households where such things were not only expected, but taken for granted.  And while nobles could still feel ill-at-ease amongst their peers due to differing ranks and status, they never allowed such feelings to be apparent.  Nor did one gawk and gape at the opulence in which they might find themselves.  Being noble came almost as natural as breathing and that is what Aiiane must strive for herself.  It had helped that her lessons had begun at an early age, that she had a natural grace and bearing and that she had developed the skill of observation of others and to incorporate those observations into strengthening her lessons.

Wearily, she closed her eyes and drifted into a light sleep as she waited for their arrival into London.

(RIP) Pierre Du Vallon

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Re: [RP] A beginning in Lancaster
« Reply #23 on: 11 July, 2017, 02:53:25 PM »
Having disembarked from his ship, and properly secured his temporary lodging in London, Mr. Pierre du Vallon gathered his aides and couriers in the local tavern's common room.
Having just arrived from his training in Brugge, Mr. du Vallon was still a bit sore, but happy to be here.  It had been many the day since he had last set foot in England.  Far toooften he tended to remain on the European mainland, or southern points of the Mediterranean. Something he would hopefully rectify in the future.

With a swift military-like precision he distributed jobs.

He set some people off to market to sell his various arms, armor, and handcrafted goods.
He also set others to London's market and those areas nearby to check for deals, and the goods needed in restocking the ship for it's voyage home to France.
Lastly, he came to his most trusted aide.

I have a special assignment for you.
Travel to Lancaster.
Seek out a Lady Aiiane Grey
Knight of the Red Rose, Tower Guardian of Lancaster, England

When you find her give her this sealed note.

Handing it too the young page, Mr. du Vallon felt nervous.
For while he could speak as well as the most talented of bards, his writing had taken on the short abrupt mannerisms of military instructions.  He truly hoped that his message would be seen for it's niceness and not necessarily for it's writing style.

"To the beautiful rose, last seen amidst the sands of Cairo.
I hope that you had a pleasent voyage home, and that all is well.
I myself have done a bit of traveling since last we spoke, and find myself for a few days in England.
In your last letter, you mentioned "opening your home to me".
Not wanting to be a burden, I simply ask that if it is possible hopefully you could meet with me for a meal.
A nice picnic in the countryside sounds most delightful.
I eagerly await your message, and hope that I may once again view your remarkable beauty."



Sending his aide off with the letter, he set about his own tasks for the day.

To his surprise though, early the next morning, a knock came at his door.  His aide had returned.

Is everything okay?  You are back much to soon.  What has happened?

I couldn't deliver the message though I inquired a great deal about her.  For you see, she has traveled to the Norse Church - Hof - OSTERGOT-LAND for the marriage between Gustav Wolfsangel and Clara Gabay.

For whom was she traveling with? Mr. du Vallon asked with hesitant curiousity.
The King m'lord.


Retaking his letter, Pierre sighed, and headed towards the inn and his room.
As he departed
Mr. Constable du Vallon, who was she?  Is she someone I should remember? 
Mr. du Vallon looks back at the man and states in a low sigh,
She is a wonderful noble here, and if things go as they are heading she may even be the English Queen one day


The female innkeeper would later tell a story about the most unusual of noble clients.
One who returning to the inn proceeded to buy everyone in the tavern a drink with silver, but then took his meal and a drink to his room where he ate in privacy.
In addition he departed much earlier than anticipated and as it seems left England on the morning tide.
In checking on the room.  She found a small purse with the enough payment to cover his anticipated stay in full.
A wonderful flower arrangement.  And two notes.  One still neatly sealed and the other a letter of inivitation from the Tower Guardian in Lancaster, which looked well worn from repeated viewings/foldings/and travels




(RIP) Aiiane Grey

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Re: [RP] A beginning in Lancaster
« Reply #24 on: 14 July, 2017, 09:45:20 PM »
Home at last!  While she had enjoyed the journey immensely, there was no feeling quite like the one which filled her as she crossed the threshold of the Tower.  Perhaps, she thought, that is why people travel, to truly appreciate what you have in your own patch of earth. 

Crutch bounded towards her with what appeared to be a silly grin on his face.  Apparently he had missed her as much as she had missed him.  Even though she had been surrounded by people, it had all been strange and unfamiliar.  The lad she'd hired to take care of the dog while she was gone, had greeted her in a rush and immediately set to bringing in her luggage.  He was thoughtful and Crutch's vigor showed how well he had tended the animal.  Perhaps she would see if a more permanent arrangements could be negotiated.

As she took up her purse to pay him once he had brought the last piece of baggage, he stopped for a moment before dashing home.  “I near forgot, M'lady.  A gentleman came looking for you.  I told him he should speak to Lord Aidan.  I didn't think it my place to give information about your business, you see.” Aiiane smiled at the lad and gave him another copper. “You did well, Brenden and I thank you.  If you would like, come back tomorrow and we can discuss a position for you in my household.”  She had not kept the lady's maid, for truly there was little need of one here.  She lived simply and there were few in the way of celebrations in Lancaster.  At least none that needed the services of such a maid on a regular basis.  Hiring someone temporarily would suffice, should the occasion ever arise.

He bobbed his head in the affirmative and left for home.  As she went about securing a bit of supper for her and Crutch, Aiiane wondered who had called and to what purpose.  Eventually, with a mental shrug, she ceased concentrating upon it for that would not supply an answer.  On the morrow, she would visit Lord Aidan and see had he any notion of who the man was and why he was looking for her.

(RIP) Aiiane Grey

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Re: [RP] A beginning in Lancaster
« Reply #25 on: 15 July, 2017, 02:28:52 PM »
The following morning, she sent a note round asking for an appointment to see Lord Aidan. Brenden, having arrived earlier, eager for steady employment and having come to satisfactory terms for both parties, discharged the task for her.

At the prescribed time, Aiiane presented herself.  They greeted each other warmly, for Lord Aidan was not merely the vassal of this region, but her friend and mentor.  Refreshments were served and they chatted easily upon the trip to Sweden and the wedding on her side and the news of Lancaster during her absence on his.  She was beginning to think she would have to bring up the subject of the stranger herself, when Lord Aidan began to apprise her of the visit.  The gentleman in question had not been seeking her himself, but on behalf of another.  When Lord Aidan spoke his name a shadow of disappointment flitted across Aiiane's face.  After a few more pleasantries, she took her leave for his lordship was a very busy man.

As she returned home, her thoughts were of the man she had briefly met in Cairo.  Nothing could be done for it, but nonetheless she felt most sorry that, if it had been his intention to visit, she had not be home to receive him, especially as she had made it a point to open her home to him should he ever have cause to travel to England.  She was still dwelling upon it as she changed into her more workaday clothing, addressing her remarks to Crutch.  “Tis a missed opportunity, Crutch, and one can never tell what might have been otherwise.  It does make one wonder at the changes which might have been wrought all through such unforeseen happenstance.” 

Crutch tilted his head at the sound of his name, but offered up no solution to the dilemma.  Aiiane laughed lightly, “Nevermind Crutch, I love you even if you can not provide me with the answers to such seeking questions.  But I shall dispatch a note to him and let him know that it deeply grieves me that I was not here to honor my invitation to him.”  Crutch wagged his tail as if to indicate his approval of the plan.

It took her some time to craft the scroll, for she wished to covey her depth of feeling without overstepping the boundaries of proprietaries.  Eventually, she had it worded to her satisfaction.

Lord du Vallon,

It is with much regret that I learned of missing your emissary.  I was unexpectedly requested to accompany our King as he attended the wedding of a comrade-in-arms and thus was away at the time.  While I have no clear indication as to his exact purpose, I can not think it was merely to have left a scroll, as none was left.  Thus I surmise it was to inquire of my availability to extend such hospitality as I had previously offered. 

Should such be the case, I offer my profound apologies for being away and that it saddens my heart to think I might have missed your company.  While chance seldom visits more than once, my offer of hospitality is still open to you should you return to these shores.

It is with much hope that whatever business brought you to England, it was concluded successfully and that you have safe journey.

Ever your servant,
Lady Aiiane Grey


She had not opted for such a formal closing as last time, considering that as he had perhaps come to visit, a friendlier tone was acceptable.  She addressed it as previously and had Brendon deliver it to a courier with payment.

(RIP) Aiiane Grey

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Re: [RP] A beginning in Lancaster
« Reply #26 on: 16 July, 2017, 04:04:36 PM »
Later in the day, Aiiane had finished inspecting her livestock, pleased with the progress she was making.  She took herself to the Tower, standing watch for some period of time.  It occurred to her that, perhaps, observing was not quite enough.  That in order to keep England safe and secure, information was needed as well.  Aiiane's face grew thoughtful, a slender fingertip tapped gently upon her chin. She would think upon this further and decide what should be done. 

Taking up her spyglass once more, Aiiane moved to the west window and there in the distance, against the backdrop of the setting sun, billowed the sails of a ship, dark against the gold of the sky.  It may have sailed from Eire, but it could have also circumnavigated England to perhaps make a stealthy approach.  She would continue the watch until she could ascertain whether it continued upon it's way or if it attempted a landing.

It was late into the evening before the pinpoint of light from the main topsail's yardarm disappeared completely from her view.  If the ship were planning landfall, it was not along any part of the coast within the watchtower's view.  Aiiane stretched her back and slowly rotated her head, first to one side and then the other, to relieve the ache of tight muscles.  It had been a long watch, but with all the news of unrest in other parts of the world, she knew vigilance was England's first line of defense.

Both she and Crutch had been without their supper, so she quickly heated a bit of soup she'd purchased at the market earlier in the day for herself and gave Crutch a meaty bone the butcher had saved for him.    Her thoughts returned to the puzzle of gaining information which might be crucial to protecting her countrymen.  A slow smile came to her face.  There were several whom she might enlist in this endeavor, men and women who traveled far and wide.  Yes, there was her answer and she would be quick to put her plan in place.

(RIP) Aiiane Grey

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Re: [RP] A beginning in Lancaster
« Reply #27 on: 17 July, 2017, 03:01:27 PM »
Her days were filled with activity.  With the sovereign approving the construction of the training grounds, Aiiane did what she could to help with the building.  It meant she would no longer have to travel to York to train, which would be a blessing.  Having the ability to stay closer to home, unless one needed certain materials that one could only obtain by traveling – or hoping a traveling merchant would come to Lancaster – meant more energy could be directed at enterprises which would result in monetary return and not wasted on tripping back and forth between regions.  There was also her duties in the Tower, her farms, fields and workshop.  It seemed like there was never enough time in the day to get it all done, but by end of day, all was complete.

As she passed by her fields, she eyed them sadly.  It had been her intention to improve them so they might better produce, but now with the grounds in progress, she wasn't sure when she'd find the time.  Perhaps after the slaughter of the pigs.  It had seemed like a good idea at the time, but having to travel back and forth to North-Cumberland to tend them was making them less profitable than they might otherwise have been.  No, once they had gained market size, she'd stick with cows for the time being.

Aiiane might not have been able to manage had it not been for Brenden and she was grateful for his help about the place.  Yet, she would not send him to tend the pigs, for his work was more valued in Lancaster and she could not spare him.  He knew a good number of people and had brought several deck hands to the house when ships were in the harbors.  Brenden had informed her that many preferred to find shelter elsewhere if they could as the docks could be vicious places.  So between the two of them, they had converted an old shed that sat upon the Tower property so it could provide adequate lodgings.

Brenden had an easy way about him and could draw the strangers into conversation.  Aiiane saw to providing meals and would then stand in the shadows where she was soon forgotten.  Talk flowed around the table and while some of the language would bring her to blush, she gathered much that would be of use to her.

(RIP) Aiiane Grey

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Re: [RP] A beginning in Lancaster
« Reply #28 on: 18 July, 2017, 08:13:30 PM »
Epiro and Albania had declared war upon the Byzantines, although it would seem to be in retaliation. Prussia had declared war upon Saxony and the next target was Bremen.  Thus went the talk around the evening table when the sailors availed themselves of Aiiane and Brenden's lodgings.

She had thought to keep record of what had been gleaned, but upon reflection, thought better of it.  On the other hand, Aiiane knew she could not rely solely upon her memory, good as it was.  So it was that she finally hit upon an idea.  When young, the rector had given her a bound book whose pages were blank.  He had instructed her to make notes of her daily activities and thus could trace where time had been spent to good use and when it had not.  It would, he also said, give her ample opportunity to practice her penmanship.  After a time, the book became nearly full and as both her time management and writing skills had improved, she had ceased keep it.

She had all the supplies to craft such a book within her workshop, although her only orders thus far were for holy books.  Aiiane spent as many hours each day as she was able in her workshop until she had a lovely bound volume of blank pages.  In the evenings, before retiring, she would spend time at her work desk in the shop, notating the day's activities and doing so in a way which would also jog her memory about the information which had been gathered.  To curious eyes, it would appear as the workaday life of a busy woman, a ledger of sorts, detailing her earnings and material possessions, of opportunities and how to best make use of them.  Yet hidden within were the mnemonics to which she could refer about time, places and events, even names.

From the window of her shop, she could look out into the town.  There, alongside the castle, the training ground was taking shape.  Even at this hour, people could be seen working in the flickering light of many torches.  Many man-hours would be needed to complete the training facility, but people were coming from all over, enticed by the pay and the food.  She and Brenden had served many a meal thus far, although the majority of the food supplies were provided by the Lords of Lancaster.  Lord Mactic and Lord Gwynedd had just been made Lord of West Lancaster and Lord of North Lancaster respectively.  Good men and deserving of their titles and land.

Aiiane smiled softly as she snuffed out the candles before locking up and leaving for home.  Perhaps, just perhaps, with continued loyalty, diligence and hard-work she would also be as worthy.

(RIP) Aiiane Grey

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Re: [RP] A beginning in Lancaster
« Reply #29 on: 21 July, 2017, 01:15:31 AM »
Upon the deck of the small ship which had been charted for this mission, Aiiane stared across the waves towards the English coastline and gave a chuckle.  For someone who'd had every intention of keeping her feet in Lancaster once she had returned from Sweden, she was once again upon the sea.  This time it was to take inventory of the buildings in England and the easiest way to do so was to sail.  Of course, there would have to be some overland journeys if there were no harbors built, which she knew to be the case in North-Cumberland, but as she was in that region often, she already knew the buildings there.  Hopefully, there would be more harbors than not and she'd finish with this trip quickly.

It was a tedious business, but crucial to their needs.  Crutch lay curled at her feet as she sat in the shadows, listening to the banter of the sailors as they went about their work.  If they realized she was there, language was circumspect and little was spoken other than a few pleasantries.  Should she manage to remain out of the line of sight and quiet, they would eventually revert to their normal ways.  It was only then, she could glean any tidbits of information.  True, such talk could be nothing more than gossip, but there were ways in which to verify what was so and what could be discarded.