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On Formalities
Sun Aug 6, 2006 17:53
211.41.39.64 (XFF: 192.168.1.3)

“Where is Devin?”

“The last time I saw him,” Menaihya said upon answering her friend, “he ran out the back door of the kitchen. He must be in the yards.”

They went to fetch him, and indeed, he was in the yards, weaving through the long branches hanging down from the trees and creating fancies as little boys must. It wasn’t so much trouble convincing him to come along—though that was Terrian’s doing, perpetually—, and after they reentered the house they sent him upstairs with a servant to quickly clean up and get dressed. Had they lingered another ten minutes, they would have intercepted the ambassador’s own course towards the ‘yards’.

In time the three climbed aboard the transport provided for them, and commenced on the slightly bumpy journey down the streets of inner Cairhien. Menaihya still could not comprehend the concept of riding in a box carried by people in lieu of walking on one’s own two feet—or if the box must be carried, why didn’t they carry it themselves? A slightly off-color thought—, but apparently the Lorien estate was found in the outer precincts of Cairhien, a good few lengths outside the city’s walls themselves, and thus the ride proved to be a necessity. She took the given time to sit and observe her near-sister’s withdrawn face. Devin, of course, being the green boy as he was, was unable to recognize any such thing, and therefore plagued ‘Miss Terrian’ with his boyish chattering and husky-voiced questions. Menaihya noted that Terrian answered rather normally, but she could still sense the vacant quality to her looks, or the dimmed undercurrent in her tone, and that made all the difference to her.

What in the Light had her brother done to her?

She wanted more than anything to voice that query aloud, but she reflected that her near-sister wanted her share of silence for the moment, to….reflect? She wasn’t entirely sure. But then again, she was thoroughly in the dark for everything, it appeared! A fine near-sister was she, unable to help and unknowing how to. She wondered at the possibilities. The worst thing that could have come to pass was that Terrian had let her feelings be known—in Aiel terms, cast the wreath at his feet—, and Jostayn had trampled on them. Just the thought of it seared anger through her, but it was somewhat plausible, though highly unlikely. She wished she knew what her brother felt! She wished she knew what sort of person her brother truly was. Was it characteristic of him?

Her green gaze transferred itself to the open square of light pouring in from the window—essentially, a great big hole in the box on both sides—, and she let it graze the green fields that met their sights upon passing. Cairhien was more or less a flat land, though squat rolling bluffs textured the horizon every once in a while. They passed fields intercrossed with rows of harvest products, and villas whose inhabitants, no doubt, owned the land that surrounded it.

“Is that….the Lorien house, Miss Terrian?” Devin asked at one point, leaning his head out and letting his mop of ash-colored hair be tousled in the breeze.

“No, Devin,” Terrian answered him, regarding the large and impressive three-storied structure with fanned out balconies and peaked roofs.

“What estate is that, good master?” Menaihya leaned out herself and asked one of the sedan-carriers, and he ducked his head.

“That’d be one of the Aramond villas, Aes Sedai,” the bare-chested man replied.

“And this land—it all belongs to House Aramond?”

“That’d be right, Aes Sedai. Up until the boundaries, at least.”

Some time later they came in sight of yet another structure that was smaller and squatter than the others they had passed, but stood in grave dignity nonetheless. The walls surrounding it were undressed gray stone, and the land underlying it was orderly and trim, though the workers milling through the fields seemed somewhat more scarce than the work required. She suspected it was so because it was nearing nightfall. At length the transport came to a halt and was lowered to the ground, and Menaihya climbed out with relief, though by the way she stepped out on her delicate slippers and shook her dark green silks to rustle down around her in folds one would have thought she was accustomed to these sort of things. Formalities, and decorum, and finery. Which she was, she supposed, and the fact that she hardly felt uncomfortable by it all proved that fact to rights.

They were met by a flurry of servants, and as they began their course down the walk that led to the main entrance, Devin grew silent. She didn’t blame the boy, really; the atmosphere surrounding this place was in all sense different from the Asha’man’s homestead, and although Jostayn’s house was certainly not all hospitality and warmth, this was….odd-feeling. For one, she felt as if the servants themselves were suspicious-eyed, and a general cloud of disquiet draped over each one, making them appear as if they were constantly peering over their shoulder. She and Terrian shared a glance, then glided into the parlor where they would meet their hosts.



OOC: This is short, horrid, and in a word, lacking. (I’m due to be on a bus in a couple of minutes) But I did bring them here! Let the fun begin.

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