Castle Anvard

Tyren strides into the kennels, in considerably more presentable condition than the evening previous. Elek pads over quickly, nudging his master’s hand, who obliges the hound with a friendly scratch behind the ears.

Lanisen enters the building some time later, the wind banging the door shut behind him. Seeing the knight, he pauses, ducks a crisp bow, and makes his way around and past Tyren to carry the parcels of meat to a table in the back.

Tyren quirks a brow slightly, dipping a nod. “Afternoon, Lanisen.”

Lanisen replies neutrally, “Afternoon, sir.” He doesn’t turn around from his task, already portioning out the scraps into a row of bowls, to the interest of several hounds milling around him.

Tyren asks, “Faring well enough, I hope?”

Lanisen answers, a bit shortly, “Yes, sir.”

Tyren drops to a knee so as to better give Elek his attentions. He says simply, “So I see.”

Lanisen doesn’t attempt to prolong the small-talk. He focuses on the job at hand.

Tyren does not further it himself just yet, preferring to keep quiet and observant for the moment.

Lanisen completes his task in silence and sets out the bowls in their usual places against the wall. He gives an ear-splitting whistle to call the dogs, and picks his way out of the general mayhem to carry the remaining four bowls to the dogs in the pens in the back.

Tyren gives Elek a glance that might reflect a question akin to ‘He been like this all day?’

Lanisen breaks up a minor tussle over a particularly meaty scrap, then stands back to supervise.

Tyren says simply, “You might as well get it out and over with, you know. Bound to happen sooner or later.”

Lanisen glances at him, frowning slightly. “Sir?”

Tyren says, “It’s not particularly difficult to tell when you’re worked up.”

Lanisen says, “Not sure what you’re gettin’ at, sir.”

Tyren says, “Oh, I’m fairly certain you /are/.”

Lanisen gives the knight a mild, politely-baffled look, then picks his way over a deerhound or three to tug Sorrel gently back from her littermate’s share of meat by one hind leg.

Tyren frowns, his own demeanor tensing /just/ slightly.

Lanisen doesn’t seem to notice or care, his attention on the dogs.

Tyren stands, saying in a sharp tone, “/Lanisen./”

Lanisen straightens, allowing the tussle to resume by his feet. “Sir?”

Tyren rolls his eyes at this, striding over toward Lanisen. “Don’t you give me that. I think you and I both know well enough what this is about.”

Lanisen shifts backward a bit, his expression flickering briefly with alarm. “Somethin’ wrong, sir?”

Tyren lets out a sarcastic ‘ha’ at this. “What? This? /No,/ whyever would you think /that?/”

Lanisen doesn’t answer.

Tyren’s expression is rigid and stony, in stark contrast to his fiery glance. “You listen to me, Lanisen, and you listen well.” His tone lowers as he says, “I admit I have perhaps been a bit more lax than I should have been in regard to you. After your experiences, I found it difficult not to. But is /this/ how I am to be repaid for the efforts I made? If so, they will not continue. I can withstand much, but I /will not/ be toyed with. Is that clear?”

Lanisen pales slightly, but he stands up straight and gives the knight his full attention, though his eyes skitter nervously across the floor. “What’ve I done wrong, sir?” he asks evenly.

Tyren raises a hand, apparently restraining a strong desire to cuff Lanisen for that comment. He lets it down again with a long breath. “You try my patience, boy. You’d best rein it in before it snaps.”

Lanisen flinches and steps back, the last color draining from his face.

Tyren folds his arms, brow quirking a little. “Had enough pluck when you were prodding the bull. Did you think you’d get away without seeing the horns?”

Lanisen doesn’t answer. He watches Tyren uneasily, still gray, just trying to wait out the storm.

Tyren says, “I asked you a question, Lanisen. I expect an answer.”

Lanisen says immediately, “I’m sorry, sir.”

Tyren asks, “Which leads me to ask another question – sorry for what? Sorry for the action, or simply sorry you didn’t cease before you pushed me over the edge?”

Lanisen shifts his weight, glancing past Tyren at the door. He moistens his lips. “I didn’t… uh, didn’t think I was doin’ anything wrong, sir.”

Tyren quirks his brow higher. “Oh? You’ve told me before you don’t enjoy feeling like your buttons are being pushed purposefully, feeling tweaked in order to get the result another wants. You think I like it anymore than you do?” He takes a quick breath. “I will say it again, Lanisen, I will not be toyed with. Do not attempt to expel anger on me with subtleties, sarcasm, and acting like a general brat, nor will I be treated as an oblivious fool. I won’t stand for it. Is that clear?”

Lanisen stares at Tyren, incredulous and angry. After a moment, he breaks the stare, ducks his head, and says quietly, “Yes, sir.”

Tyren nods once, tone becoming less sharp as he says, “I have at least tried to be understanding. I have likely failed in such more than I had hoped, but I will not have that effort taken advantage of. Good day, Lanisen.” He turns, gestures to Elek, and starts to make his way out of the kennels with his hound at his heels.

Lanisen rubs the back of his neck with a shaky hand. He exhales softly, his shoulders dropping, and breathes something venomous.

Tyren halts, clearly having heard.

Lanisen has already bent to pick up the emptied food-dishes, stacking them one atop another, and doesn’t look back at Tyren.

Tyren says simply, “I’d watch that tongue of yours before it gets you into further trouble,” before he walks out.


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