games people play

Castle Anvard

Tyren makes his way into the kennels, his expression having lost some of the rigidity it had when he last left, though traces may still be detectable. He pauses in the doorway, scanning the room.

Lanisen may not be immediately visible, as he’s found a spot beneath the stairs to curl up with the heroic deerhound, whose left forepaw is bandaged neatly and is sporting a torn ear. Lanisen, for his part, has changed tunics and seems to have done something to stop his arm bleeding.

Tyren does not immediately notice, although it seems that Lanisen is indeed the subject of his search – verified as he takes a step further in and says, “Lanisen?”

Lanisen raises his head immediately, shifting the deerhound off his lap, and emerges, standing to bow. “Sir?”

Tyren dips a small nod in return. “How fare you both?” He gives a nod toward the deerhound, indicating the other he refers to in his question.

Lanisen glances to the deerhound. “He’s fine, sir. Got a paw chomped a bit and a couple scratches. I put some stuff on ’em, though. Oughta be good as new in a week or so.”

Tyren nods. “Good to hear. And as for yourself?”

Lanisen says, “I’m fine too, sir.”

Tyren gestures toward Lanisen’s arm. “Had it looked at?”

Lanisen shrugs uncomfortably. “It ain’t bad. I just washed it off and tied it up. It’s fine.”

Tyren sighs, but seems to be in no mood to belabor the point. Instead, he merely says, “Better safe than sorry.”

Lanisen says, “Yes, sir.”

Tyren says, “Rest assured I /will/ speak with Adrian on the matter, however. As I said before, I know all too well what can happen when even a minor wound is not seen to properly.”

Lanisen says, somewhat defensively, “I seen to it, sir.”

Tyren lifts a brow, his tone become just a /slight/ bit more ascerbic in response to the defensive note. “Just what /do/ you have against a simple once-over?”

Lanisen says, “Nothin’, sir.”

Tyren asks, “Then why protest it?”

Lanisen shifts impatiently, defensiveness growing almost visibly. “‘Cause it ain’t needed.”

Tyren’s own frustration is mounting /quite/ visibly as he says a bit sharply, “And you’re such an expert, are you?”

Lanisen quails slightly and makes no answer, watching Tyren warily.

Tyren rubs the bridge of his nose, letting out a slow breath through his mouth. “Lion’s Mane, listen to me. If you can’t be bothered to care enough about yourself to submit to a short once-over for your own sake, then why in the /world/ should /I?/”

Lanisen stares at him, bewildered. He swallows and lowers his eyes, taking a half step back with one foot, and watches Tyren indirectly.

Tyren glances Lanisen up and down, then says, perhaps a slight bit shortly, “Well. If you and your expert opinion believe you’ve already done all that’s needed, then I shall drop the subject.”

Lanisen still says nothing. He looks pale.

Tyren glances toward the doorway again. “I came in simply to see how you fared. I seem to have my answer now.”

Lanisen nods silently, watching the knight.

Tyren glances back to Lanisen, his eye falling upon Lanisen’s arm. He furrows his brow slightly.

Lanisen, following Tyren’s glance, looks down at his arm. He shifts and turns it a degree to hide where blood has stained his sleeve.

Tyren says, “If I may say so, that does not look quite so expert as I am sure you would have me believe.”

Lanisen says, “It’s fine, sir.”

Tyren rolls his eyes at this with clear exasperation. “Right. And I’m a Tarkaan of Calormen.”

Lanisen says nothing.

Tyren shrugs a shoulder. “All right then. It’s fine. But if and when it starts to become infected and worsen, don’t come whining to me.”

Lanisen keeps his eyes fixed on the ground.

Tyren gives a nod toward the deerhound. “How well are you going to be able to look after /them/ in such an instance?”

Lanisen glances at the deerhound, then returns to studying the floor.

Tyren lets out a frustrated grunt, starting to say something beginning with ‘if you,’ but he stops himself, shaking his head. After a moment, he begins again. “I’ve done what I came for. I was concerned, and I can /apparently/ put those concerns to rest, despite evidence to the contrary. In that case, I shall go.”

Lanisen shifts his weight and fiddles with the bulky part of his right sleeve that probably conceals the crude bandage. He appears conflicted, and he looks at Tyren urgently as if he’s about to say something, but the words don’t make it out and after a moment he’s only staring at the ground again.

Tyren notes this, and prods. “Unless you had something to say yourself?”

Lanisen swallows. “‘D… really rather not go, sir. Not ‘less I have to. That’s all.”

Tyren’s response to this is short and to the point. “Why?”

Lanisen shrugs, uncomfortable and evasive. “Half the time, what they do hurts more’n just leavin’ it to heal on its own.”

Tyren folds his arms. “Then buck up, grow a spine, and /deal/ with it. Fear of a little pain is not going to settle well with a knight. Our path /is/ pain.”

Lanisen flinches. He takes a breath, bows his head, and hesitates before finally nodding very slightly.

Tyren nods once, his tense demeanor lessening a degree. “See that you do.”

Lanisen swallows and glances to the door, glances to his arm, and back to the door. “…I’ll go tomorrow.”

Tyren repeats, “See that you do. I will /not/ be pleased if I find that I have been played. Especially when such sentiments stem out of concern for /your/ welfare.”

Lanisen shuts his eyes briefly, crossing one arm over his middle, and shifts his weight. “I’m, I’m– I’m not /playin’/ you, sir.”

Tyren says, “I will find out for myself when I speak with Adrian tomorrow evening.”

Lanisen stares balefully at the knight, looking tired and sore. Like he very much wants to ask, ‘What is the /MATTER/ with you?’

Tyren quirks a brow, his own expression almost /daring/ Lanisen to ask the question verbally.

Lanisen doesn’t. Quite. “I ain’t playin’ you, sir,” he says finally. He keeps his eyes down, and his voice is soft and rather shaky. “You’re–/you’re/ playin’ /me/, you’re tryin’ to get me all, all twisted up and bristly and feelin’ guilty so I do what you want. It ain’t– it ain’t kind, sir.” His eyes flicker briefly up to Tyren and quickly away. “You could order me to go, and I would. I’d– I’d have to, and I wouldn’t like it, and I hope you don’t. But even that’d be better than… than what you’re doin’, sir.”

Tyren’s tense features flicker at this, and he pulls a long breath. He rubs a temple, and after a long moment, says simply, “That was not my intention. Consciously, at least.”

Lanisen stands silently, having had his say.

Tyren leans against the closed and bolted door to one of the pens, suddenly looking rather weary himself. “You are right. It is not fair of me to… attempt to… sway you in such a manner.” He glances to Lanisen again, opening his mouth to add something further, then shakes his head, apparently uncertain of how to word what he wants to say.

Lanisen only waits to see where Tyren is going from here, quiet and expressionless. He studies the ground, and he is shivering slightly.

Tyren says slowly and in low tones, “A proper knight does not use force except as a last resort – I hold that goes for verbal force as well as physical. It rather lessens one’s perception of the one they force as an individual. But how else am I to get through?” He shrugs a shoulder. “Believe what you will, Lanisen, but I /do/ hold concern for you as a person. However, clearly you do not trust me or my intentions. You’ve stated as much before. And after all you’ve faced I can hardly blame you for that. If you will not trust my direction on its own merit, and I do not wish to force you and risk seeing you as something less than a person with your own fears and doubts… what am I to do, I ask?” Without waiting for a response, he rubs the bridge of his nose. “Manipulate said fears and doubts to my own ends, apparently, making me no better than those such as Myrd. A grand deadlock, isn’t it?”

Lanisen keeps quiet for a moment, trying to work through all this. “I…” he begins, and his face screws up briefly with frustration. “I don’t… it’s not that I think you mean me harm, it’s–” He stops again. “I don’t know, I don’t know how to… trust, it’s…” He runs his thumb over the livid scar on his throat. “Since bein’ here, it’s– I seen… it’s different than– than what I’m used to, it’s… I don’t know, I’m sorry, I’m tryin’ to– to figure it out, I’m tryin’ to trust you.”

Tyren takes a moment himself to work through this. After a good-sized pause, he nods once. “It is a step. I will not /demand/ your trust, nor will any who takes his role as a noble or a knight seriously. However, it will require a step of faith in both directions in order for something to happen.” He rubs at his neck. “And I am sorry for attempting to… manipulate you in such a manner. It is not befitting of one in my position, and the fact it was not consciously intentional is no excuse.” He hehs faintly. “Further proof that even my patience has its limits, I suppose.”

Lanisen shifts uneasily. “I’m sorry, sir.”

Tyren hehs again. “Had a lot coming at me at once lately. I suppose even a knight wants things to be easy every now and again.”

Lanisen says. “That’d be nice, sir.”

Tyren says, “So it would. But the right path is hardly ever the easy one.”

Lanisen tugs at his sleeve, peeling the darkened fabric away from the injury.

Tyren furrows his brow a bit and frowns. “By the looks of that you’d do well not to wait until tomorrow to have Adrian see to it.”

Lanisen says, “He’s prob’ly already went to bed.”

Tyren says, “Only one way to find out. And I know personally that Adrian keeps odd hours at times.”

Lanisen says, “‘S late. It won’t hurt much to wait ’til morning.”

Tyren’s glance lingers on Lanisen’s arm a moment longer, then nods. “First thing. And if it bothers you too much, at least drop by the infirmary. Someone should be there, at least, if not Adrian.” He pauses, then adds, “Consider that an order.”

Lanisen glances at Tyren, somewhat startled. He looks down. “Yes, sir.”

Tyren’s expression hints at what is, of all things, relief. “I will see how you fare tomorrow, then.”

Lanisen bows. “Good night, sir.”

Tyren nods in return, saying with all sincerity, “Take care.”

Lanisen replies, “You too, sir.”

Tyren hehs, quirking another faint grin. He chooses not to explain this one, either through words or anything in his expression, as he makes his way out.


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