Lanisen is putting a brindle greyhound pup through its paces in the back of the room, alternating commands of come, fetch, stay, leave it, harry.
An explosive sneeze can be heard outside the door before it opens and Colin comes into the kennels.
The sneeze is evidently enough to arrest the greyhound pup’s attention. It drops the rabbit-sized chewtoy and bolts for the door, yammering at the top of its lungs at the sneezy intruder.
Colin dodges the pup several times. “I didn’t mean it!” He protests.
Tyren slips into the kennels, his countenance containing a masked haggardness if one takes the time to observe closely. He quirks a brow at the goings-on, keeping to the edges of the kennels as he searches for his hound.
Lanisen, jogging after the pup, orders, “Sorrel, no, leave off! To me!” Sorrel, for her part, doesn’t see the order as particularly relevant to her life in general, and merely continues harassing Colin, tail whipping wildly.
Colin eyes the pup ruefully, his hands up as if he were being robbed. “Good day, Lanisen.” He says wryly.
Lanisen swoops in to easily scoop up the distracted misbehaving pup. He holds the squirming thing firmly and tells her in a no-nonsense tone, “/No/.” This settled, he grimaces apologetically to Colin and bows both to him and Tyren. “Afternoon, sir. Er, sirs.”
Colin looks puzzled, and glances around for the other sir. “Ah, good day Sir Tyren.” He offers a bow in his direction.
Tyren bows toward Colin, and nods a bit in Lanisen’s direction. “Afternoon, both of you.”
Lanisen is having an increasingly difficult time hanging on to the pup with all the ohmygoodnessPEOPLE in the room. He finally gives up and lets her go, checking the door first. “Puck’s in the yard, sir,” he tells Colin. “You want me to go find him for you?” Sorrel, meanwhile, Investigates Tyren.
Colin watches Sorrel and chuckles hoarsely. “If you don’t mind.”
Tyren drops to a knee and strokes Sorrel gently.
Lanisen turns to do so, giving Colin an odd look first. “Don’t /you/ sound like a buncha lutes ‘n’ flutes,” he comments.
Colin returns said odd look. “Eh?”
Lanisen makes an illustrative hack-wheeze-phlegmy-throat-cleary noise, grinning a bit cheekily at Colin.
Colin ruefully punches the air next to Lanisen’s head. “Puck.”
Tyren continues to stroke the pup, though his glance still seems intent on seeking out his own hound.
Lanisen’s grin broadens. “I’m goin’, I’m goin’!” He disappears out the back door. There is the sound of a brief scuffle in the hound-yard, then Lanisen returns, holding a bit of much-chewed bone just out of Puck’s reach. He lets the pup sniff it and /almost/ get it, then tosses it across the floor toward Colin.
Sorrel chews placidly on Tyren’s fingers.
Tyren makes a bit of a face with a low ‘ouch’ as Sorrel nips a bit harder than the knight might perhaps find comfortable. Elek pads over at this point, looking somewhat subdued but at least about. He noses Tyren, and the knight idly scratches the wolfhound behind the ears with his free hand.
Colin drops to one knee and retrieves the bone, holding it out for Puck.
Puck pounces after it with gusto, darting back and forth as if harrying a particularly dangerous prey.
Colin enjoys taunting the pup with the bone, grinning as he keeps it just out of reach.
Tyren smiles a bit as he continues to stroke both puppy and hound. He tells Elek, “Glad to see you’re up and about. Good sign.”
Colin tosses the bone in Tyren’s direction, directing Puck to go pounce after it.
Lanisen hoots with laughter, watching. Sorrel finds the skittering bone of much more interest than Tyren and pounces for it, colliding with Puck.
Tyren, even in his somewhat subdued mood, can’t keep from chuckling himself as he watches the pups.
Colin snickers, and snags the bone while the pups untangle themselves. He sneezes, ducking his head into his elbow.
Tyren glances over to Colin at the sound, asking simply, “You all right over there?”
Lanisen says cheerfully, “Hurricane!”
Colin throws the bone at Lanisen.
Lanisen catches it neatly and wings it in turn at Tyren.
Tyren acks, the pups taking note and chasing after. Knight and hound glance at each other with something resembling resignation to their likely demise due to overenthusiastic puppies.
Colin watches with wicked glee and does nothing to interfere.
Lanisen’s expression is nearly identical to Colin’s. The pups, yammering happily, pursue the bone and plow into Tyren.
Tyren lets out a grunt, the pups’ speed and sudden stop as they plow into him enough to elicit it. Sorrel pokes around Elek’s paws, and the larger hound noses at it, while Puck has his say with the hem of Tyren’s tunic, complete with growly noises.
Colin starts laughing, which in turn initiates coughing. The combined sounds are rather comical.
Lanisen comments, “Hurricanes /and/ an invasion of dragons. We’re doomed.” He thumps Colin helpfully on the back with an appropriately doleful expression.
Colin’s voice is a little occupied at the moment but he takes a swing at Lanisen, shoving him back. Good naturedly, of course.
It is Elek rather than Tyren who tries to get Puck to stop chewing on the knight’s tunic, nudging the pup in a rather insistent fashion. Tyren does his best to keep Sorrel occupied in the meantime, figuring his own hound might better know how to deal with the situation than he would at the moment.
Puck paws at Elek’s nose, but refuses to turn Tyren’s tunic loose.
Lanisen’s face flickers briefly with alarm as he tumbles backwards, then lights up again brighter than before when it becomes clear that Colin is playing. “Nahhh, you’re right,” he says. “Definitely not dragons. More like a big ol’ herd of donkeys, I’d say.”
Tyren finally gets around to adding something to the conversation. “Oh, I wouldn’t completely eliminate the dragons.” He ruffles Sorrel’s fur a bit which makes the pup yip slightly and tug at Tyren’s sleeve. “Great… Astera’s going to have some work to do after this, I gather.”
Colin clears his throat loudly, catching his breath. “Thanks. Both of you. Really appreciate it.”
Lanisen grins, but pauses his ribbing long enough to give Colin a sidelong worried look and ask, “You all right?”
Colin waves at Lanisen and clears his throat again. “Just fine, mum.” he says wryly.
Tyren attempts to extract his sleeve from Sorrel’s grasp while Elek continues trying to urge Puck away from the tunic. “You sure? Sound awful.”
Lanisen drops to one knee and clicks his tongue to call off the pups. “Dragons, donkeys… dying cows…”
Sorrel relents, though Puck continues to yank at Tyren’s tunic.
Colin bends down and retrieves Puck, prying his teeth free from Tyren’s tunic. He ‘accidentally’ knocks into Lanisen hard enough to probably knock him over.
Lanisen oomphs and goes sprawling, rolling to get rid of extra momentum. He groans and sits up, making a big show of being dizzy. “What, am I wrong?” he wonders, all beleaguered innocence.
Colin’s look mirrors Lanisen’s feigned innocence. “Right about what?”
Tyren hehs as Colin removes Puck, saying simply, “Thanks.” Elek nudges Colin briefly in what also seems to be gratitude, before nosing Tyren again, who resumes his petting of the wolfhound.
Puck in the meantime starts to climb all over Colin.
Lanisen appeals to Tyren for truth’n’justice in the matter. “/I’d/ sure say he sounded like a dyin’ cow. Wouldn’t you, sir?”
Colin sets the climbing pup on Lanisen. Puck immediately starts looking for something to chew on, settling for a nice finger. *CHOMP*
Tyren says, “Well, I can’t honestly say I’ve heard many dying cows. Therefore I do not think myself quite qualified to pass judgment there.”
Lanisen extracts his finger from Puck’s chomping with a minimum of indignant yowling. “It’s a sort of…. /HURRGH/ noise,” he explains helpfully, nothing but bland academic interest on his face. “Sir Colin did it better.”
Colin eyes his pup. “Puck, bite harder.”
Tyren glances to Colin. “I /will/ say it’s not the sort of noise I expect to come from someone’s throat, unless there is something the matter with said throat.”
Colin retorts “Said throat is doing just fine.”
Lanisen nods sagely. “It’s just learnin’ how to talk to dead cows.”
Colin says, “Dead cows don’t talk, Lanisen.”
Lanisen says, “Yeah, well.”
Colin says, “Because, you know. They’re DEAD.”
Tyren quirks a brow faintly, though a faint smirk cracks his features as well. “And I would likely profess to be ‘just fine’ myself despite the fact I was bleeding from a dozen places after a nasty spar. But if you say so.”
Lanisen says, “So what you’re sayin’ is we oughta start worryin’ when you talk like a dead cow?”
Lanisen says, “As opposed to a dyin’ one?”
Colin kneels on the floor so Puck can pounce on him, ignoring Lanisen.
Tyren rolls his eyes a bit in a good-natured fashion, faint smirk still in place, and returns his attentions to the wolfhound by him, speaking in low tones to it. “Glad you seem to be doing better, friend.”
Lanisen shoos Puck toward Colin gladly enough, returning his attention to Sorrel, who seems ready to settle down.
Colin chuckles. He scootches across the floor to the nearby wall where he can lean his back up against it and let Puck climb all over him.
Colin sneezes again.
Tyren glances to Colin with a raised brow again… what a surprise.
Lanisen crosses his arms, eying Colin.
Colin grumbles at the two of them, muttering unintelligably under his breath.
Lanisen shrugs, in a just-sayin’ manner.
Tyren merely shrugs a shoulder himself.
Colin asks, “If I go see Adrian will you two old hens hush up?”
Tyren says, “Not particularly. But I’d be more inclined to on this particular subject, anyway.”
Lanisen asks, “Who’s Adrian?”
Colin says, “Court healer.”
Lanisen ohs, wrinkling his nose a bit.
Colin mimics his expression and stands, handing Puck off to Lanisen. “I’ll probably see you two later.”
Tyren hehs. “Take care, Colin.” He straightens and bows.
Colin returns the bow. “Same to you.”
Lanisen takes Puck in one arm and balances Sorrel on the other. He somehow manages to stand up without losing either of them and bows. “Afternoon, sir. Get better, ‘fore I figure out what else you sound like.”
Colin makes a face at him and departs.
Colin walks out of the Kennels to the Outer Ward.
Tyren glances after his friend with a quiet ‘heh.’ “Probably no more than a cold or something…”
Lanisen grins and carefully resumes his seat, settling both now-sleepy pups into a pile on his lap.
Lanisen says, “Prob’ly…”
Tyren gestures toward his own hound. “Elek seems to be doing better. He been eating again?”
Lanisen shrugs. “Seems to be.”
Tyren lets out a slow breath, clearly relieved to hear this. “Glad of that…”
Lanisen asks, rather dryly, “You get him to… uh, quit worryin’, then?”
Tyren says, “So it would seem.”
Lanisen makes a resigned guess-we’re-doing-this sort of face. “Well, good.”
Tyren ruffles Elek’s fur, who makes a slight face but wags his tail. “Indeed.”
Lanisen settles into a comfortable rhythm, stroking both pups’ heads and staring absently out the window. He straightens slightly after a moment, almost craning his neck to watch somebody walk past outside.
Durant pads over toward Tyren and Elek, and noses the other hound in a friendly manner. Elek noses back, and the two hounds have themselves a round of general canine greetings and such.
Tyren hangs back a bit, leaving the hounds to their own devices for the moment. His demeanor is less tense than it was when he came in.
Lanisen peers after the outside pedestrian with disinterested wariness, then sighs and relaxes back against the wall. “Puck didn’t chew up your shirt too bad, did he, sir?”
Tyren hehs. “No, not at all. It’ll survive.”
Lanisen says, “‘S good. Sorry. He likes to chew stuff.”
Tyren says, “So I gather. It is only to be expected, and it is simply a tunic. No harm done.”
Lanisen seems to have exhausted his store of small-talk, and so simply nods a reply.
Tyren says, “Thank you again for keeping an eye on Elek. It really does mean a good deal to me.”
Lanisen says, “‘S my job, sir.”
Tyren says, “And a job done well is deserving of gratitude.”
Lanisen says a bit flatly, “You’ve said that before, sir.”
Tyren shrugs a shoulder. “It’s the truth.”
Lanisen doesn’t answer.
Elek glances over to Tyren, who gestures. “Go on. Durant’s likely been as worried as I have, if not more. Best reassure him by… well… doing whatever it is you two do.”
Lanisen glances at Elek, mostly expressionless. It’s clear, however, that he is as relieved at the hound’s improving health as Durant.
The two hounds pad off to some other part of the kennels, and Tyren lets out another soft sigh, rubbing the back of his neck.
Lanisen watches them go. At the sigh, he raises an eyebrow and remarks, “Sir Colin sounds like a herd of donkeys and you sound like a tea kettle.”
Tyren hehs faintly. “I believe a tea kettle is rather higher-pitched than I am. Though I see your point.”
Lanisen shrugs and gets to the point. “You all right, sir?”
Tyren says, “I’ve been better, admittedly. But I’m managing.”
Lanisen nods silently. “‘M sorry,” he adds after a moment.
Tyren hehs, running a hand through his hair. “Not much that can be done about it at the moment…”
Lanisen asks, “Somethin’… happen?”
Tyren furrows his brow a little. “Not… not as such, no, it’s… somewhat complicated…” He pauses momentarily before he says, “Suffice it to say that someone I love is having some… feelings that I do not know how to reassure… or even understand, fully.”
Lanisen raises both eyebrows briefly, looking not sure what to say – except, again, “I’m sorry.”
Tyren hehs. “It will resolve. I’m just… not particularly fond of feeling helpless.”
Lanisen looks down.
Tyren shifts his glances to Elek and Durant, who are now dozing lightly by each other. “Least that’s one less thing to worry me…”
Lanisen says nothing to this, though something in his expression tightens.
Tyren quirks a brow, noting this.
Lanisen, as usual, does not seem inclined to explain.
Tyren asks, “Something wrong?”
Lanisen says, popping the ‘p’, “Nope.”
Tyren says, “Somehow I’m not convinced.”
Lanisen says, “‘S good that you don’t have to worry about your dog gettin’ sick.”
Tyren’s brow remains raised, and he nods once.
Lanisen says, “Must be all sorts of frustratin’ for you when that happens.”
Tyren’s brow inches higher. “You can cut the sarcasm.”
Lanisen cuts it.
Tyren folds his arms, hold himself somewhat straighter and his tone perhaps a degree firmer. “Let me put it this way, Lanisen. When I am forced to choose between focusing on the well being of my wife, and that of my hound… I will choose my wife. Every time.”
Lanisen frowns, looking genuinely startled. “What?”
Tyren ignores the question, instead pressing onward. “Thus, the fact I am even here right now should say something, does it not?”
Lanisen chooses to regard this as a rhetorical question, waiting to see where Tyren is going.
Tyren says, “Elek is a valued companion and friend, and I do my best to make sure he is taken care of. But I will /not/ make his welfare more important than that of my family.”
Lanisen still says nothing, his expression an odd mix of baffled and belligerent.
Tyren quirks his brow still higher – his mother would likely be proud of such an expression. “Is there a problem with that?”
Lanisen stares at Tyren for a moment longer, then looks away and lowers his head – still obviously not comprehending and likely not changing his mind, but acknowledging the knight’s authority.
Tyren says nothing further, rubbing the bridge of his nose with a thumb and forefinger as he pulls a slow breath.
Lanisen does not look back at Tyren, studying the ground instead. He looks, several times, about to say something: whether further snark, apology, a question, or a comment about the weather is impossible to say.
Tyren’s demeanor shifts de-tenses slightly, back into his usual stance. His facial expression, however, still is rigid.
Lanisen shifts the sleeping pups off his lap and attempts to rub the feeling back into his legs. “Didn’t mean that,” he finally says.
Tyren asks, “Then what /did/ you mean?” His tone, if one listens close enough, betrays a degree of fatigue.
Lanisen shrugs, still not looking at Tyren. “Is she all right? Your wife?”
Tyren is silent a moment before he says quietly, “She is fine. She has simply needed… support, as of late. Support that I do not know how to give.”
Lanisen nods silently, and doesn’t ask further.
Tyren seems mildly grateful for this fact.
Lanisen finally says, “I’m… really sorry, sir. Guess it…” He pauses, frowning and uncertain. “It wasn’t… my place to– I shouldn’t… shouldn’t’ve talked to you that way.”
Tyren stands again from his position by Elek, and says simply, “True enough. But it is all right.”
Lanisen hesitates a moment, then stands and bows. The motion is rather awkward, but it manages to convey respect and a more visible apology. “Thank you.”
Tyren merely nods once.
The sleeping pups begin to stir. Lanisen watches them for a moment, then tilts his head toward the back of the kennels, indicating unfinished work. “I should… ‘scuse me please, sir.”
Tyren nods again. “Of course.”
Lanisen mumbles his thanks and turns away, half-bowing again awkwardly, and heads for the back of the room and the chores that are presumably still there and unfinished.
Tyren gives Elek one last pat on the head, and heads out of the kennels.