back in coghill

The Bird and Baby’s Tavern
Southeastern Archenland

This room echoes with a nearly constant din as voices rise and fall in conversation. An atmosphere of warmth and cheer predominates, and the walls have been painted a dark red. There are several tables for diners; many line the wall to provide for more private discussions. A board hangs in a highly visible location; it pays tribute to the history of the dining room and includes sketches of some of its more well known denizens. A menu, written out by hand, indicates what selections are being served. If the aromas emanating from the kitchen beyond are any evidence, the food is certain to please. In the back is a smaller room where isolated gatherings can be held.

Lanisen stands back a way from the bar, considering the pricelist. He finally asks for a bowl of rabbit stew, pays up, and turns to look for a table.

Abrielle walks into the tavern from the direction of the kitchen, sneaking past Clift as she does so.

Nalan walks in throught the front door. His cloak wrapped tightly around him. Clift nods to him, “Evening Steward.” Nalan replies, “Good evening Master Clift.”

Lanisen chooses a seat where he can easily see the whole room and sit with his back to the wall. Hearing Clift’s greeting, he glances up quickly, alarmed.

Abrielle straightens up as she comes away from the counter. Clift spots her and shakes his head but doesn’t comment. Abrielle just shoots him a smile. She notes his greeting after a pause and looks around expectantly.

Nalan, after speaking with Clift, turns to find a table. Noticing Abrielle he says, “Good evening Miss Abrielle. Nice to see you here.”

Lanisen gives the man addressed as steward a long puzzled look, then turns his attention to his stew.

Abrielle dips her head to Nalan and smiles. “Hello, Sir. It is nice to see you too.”

Nalan asks, “How are you this evening?”

Lanisen watches the conversation with casual interest.

Abrielle shrugs. “Good as always.” She looks over and catches Lanisen’s eyes, watching. “Hello…Lanisen wasn’t it?”

Nalan follows Abrielle’s gaze towards the man sitting at a table.

Lanisen scrambles a bit, put on the spot. He stands and ducks his head toward them politely. “Yes, miss. Abrielle, right?”

Abrielle nods. “Yes.”

Nalan turns towards the man, “Good evening, sir.”

Lanisen dips his head toward the stranger. “Evening.”

Abrielle looks between the two men, uncertain as to what to do.

Nalan looks back and forth, “Oh don’t let me interupt anything.” He steps to the side.

Lanisen looks confused. “Um?” He glances at Abrielle a little helplessly, then asks Nalan, “Sorry, did he call you steward?”

Abrielle shakes her head. “I just got here…you are not interrupting anything.” She glances back to Lanisen.

Nalan turns back to the man, “Yes sir. My name is Nalan steward to Lord Shar.”

Lanisen says, “Oh! Aah. That makes more sense.” He grins crookedly.

Abrielle tilts her head, a little confused.

Nalan says, “I am glad it clears things up for you.”

Lanisen rubs the back of his neck. “Anyway.”

Abrielle sighs. “Um…” She looks to Nalan and then back to Lanisen. “How have your travels with Sir Colin been?”

Lanisen says, “Good! Real good. Yeah. Been in Carmichael, mostly, spent a week or two in Lancelyn Green.” He shrugs. “It’s good.”

Abrielle smiles. “I love it in Carmichael…if I lived anywhere else it would be there…” Her eyes go distant for a moment. “Well…I am glad to hear it has been going well.”

Nalan looks at Abrielle, “I didn’t know you’ve traveled.”

Lanisen agrees, “It’s real pretty country. I grew up there.”

Abrielle nods to Nalan. “Yes. I have travelled to Carmichael twice and the sea once…” She looks back to Lanisen. “Did you?”

Nalan says, “Well I’ll let you two talk,” at that he turns and walks back over towards the bar. He talks to Clift for a bit then the inn keeper pulls out a mug and hands it to the steward.

Lanisen looks a little surprised as Nalan walks away. He glances at Abrielle.
Lanisen mumbles “Sorry, I didn’t mean to interrupt anything…”, to Abrielle.
Lanisen mumbles “… I … mean … interrupt …”, to Abrielle.

Abrielle watches Nalan walk away before mumbling back to Lanisen.
Abrielle mumbles “I don’t know what that is about.””, to Lanisen.
Abrielle mumbles “I … … what that … …”, to Lanisen.

Lanisen grins faintly.
Lanisen mumbles “He’s just a naturally friendly and gregarious fellow?”, to Abrielle.
Lanisen mumbles “He’s … … … friendly … … …”, to Abrielle.

Abrielle laughs and nods back. “Normally.”

Lanisen gestures past Abrielle toward Nalan with a nod. “Don’t let me keep you.”

Nalan speaks to the inn keeper again, handing back the mug he was given. He re-ties the knot on his cloak then turns and starts walking towards the door.

Abrielle looks over her shoulder and notices Nalan leaving. “Goodnight, Nalan. See you soon?”

Nalan pause just before the door. He looks over his shoulder and replies, “Yes, of course. I will see you tomorrow.”

Lanisen glances between them, raising his eyebrows slightly.

Abrielle nods, smiling and turns back to Lanisen. “I am not kept.”

Lanisen blinks. “You what?”

Abrielle raises an eyebrow. “What?”

Lanisen says, “I don’t know what you just said.”

Abrielle laughs. “You didn’t want to keep me…I was not kept. I am here on my own free will.”

Lanisen says, “Oh! Um. All right.” He glances around the tavern and shrugs. “…Care to join me, then?”

Abrielle laughs and takes the chair across from him. “Thank you…sorry I made you uncomfortable.”

Lanisen sits down in his own chair. “Ehhh, it’s more or less a permanent state.”

Abrielle nods. “I see….” After a pause she chuckles a little to herself.

Lanisen asks, “You gonna eat anything?”

Abrielle shakes her head. “No…I already got things.” She leans in closer. “From the kitchen…”

Lanisen blinks, then laughs. “It’s like that, is it?”

Abrielle shrugs and leans back in the chair, barely containing her smile. “I have some friends.”

Lanisen says, “Very resourceful. I’m impressed.”

Abrielle dips her head. “Thank you.” She smiles. “So you are from Carmichael?”

Lanisen shrugs, glancing down at his soup. “Haven’t lived there for… six, seven years. But yeah.”

Abrielle leans back so her chair tilts a little. “Was it good to be back?”

Lanisen shrugs again. “Wasn’t really one thing or the other,” he says after a hesitation for thought.

Abrielle nods. “Sure sure….”

Lanisen asks, “Where is it you’re from?”

Abrielle points out the door. “That direction and then a bit North. Some little farming town with no name.”

Lanisen asks, “Lancelyn Green area?”

Abrielle nods. “Yep…around there somewhere.”

Lanisen nods. “That’s pretty country too.”

Abrielle nods. “I am a true country girl.”

Lanisen grins. He glances down at his stew briefly and asks, “D’you mind if I–? Only I ain’t eaten since Lancelyn Green and I’m kind of famished.”

Abrielle laughs. “Oh please! Eat! I do not mind at all…I will head out.” She smiles and gets up. “It was good seeing you again.”

Lanisen says, “Oh! I didn’t mean–oh, all right. Um. You too.”

Abrielle nods. “Have a good time back!” She walks out the door.

Lanisen says, “Yeah. Thanks.” He is sitting alone at a table with his back to the wall, and as Abrielle leaves he digs into a bowl of rabbit stew with evident relish.

A daughter of eve covered in pale freckles (Willa) skips out of the kitchen, carrying a small package.

Lanisen glances her direction with casual interest.

Willa sees him looking at her. “Hello Mister! Haven’t met you before!”

Lanisen says, “Aauum. Noo, I don’t think so. ‘Lo.”

Willa exclaims, “Hello!”

Lanisen asks, “Who’re you, then?”

Willa exclaims, “What! I’m not supposed to give my name to strangers. You give me yours first so we aren’t them anymore.”

Lanisen laughs, then nods seriously. “Seems fair to me. I’m Lanisen.”

Willa points to herself with her free thumb. “Well, I’m Willa. How come you’re here, Lennyson?”

Lanisen doesn’t bother correcting her. “I’m here with a friend. How come are /you/ here?”

Willa says, “/I/ live here, /thanks/.”

Lanisen says, “All right, that’s a pretty good reason to be somewhere.”

Willa says, “Way better than with a friend, that don’t mean NOTHING.”

Lanisen protests, “What? Means plenty.”

Willa says, “It don’t say WHY you’re here.”

Lanisen scratches his head. “I’m not really sure just yet,” he admits. “Mostly I go where my friend goes and he had somebody to talk to here, I guess. So here I am too.”

Willa says, “That’s a funny way of living. Do you ever have to go someplace,” she says the next word enticingly, “/dangerous/?””

Lanisen hmms. “What’s dangerous?”

Willa says, “I don’t know, I ain’t never done anything dangerous.”

–this is the point where lanisen’s player had to bow out due to cold medicine, and willa’s player graciously permitted the weird unfinished RP. we meant to finish and did not. whoops.–


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