catching up

Kennel Loft
Castle Anvard

There is a strong and clear voice that drifts up the stairs, “Lanisen, It is Lord Peridan. Can I come up?”

Lanisen is sitting alone on the floor by the window in the north wall, his bad leg stretched out in front of him and his good leg tucked under it. He has a book open on his lap, and is holding a piece of bread away from a hopeful hound. He straightens slightly at the call, surprised, then gets to his feet and goes to the steps to see.

He would see Lord Peridan looking up at him with a smile. The Lord’s left arm is in a sling with his left wrist bandaged. “Hello Lanisen. I was told I might find you here. Hope I am not interrrupting?”

Lanisen says, stammering, “Uhh, n-no, sir, uh–” He ducks a bow, his eyes flitting briefly to the sling. “Do you– ahh, what can I do for you, sir?”

Peridan comes up the stairs, “Just wanted to say hello.” He glances around the room, “Looks like you are camping.”

Lanisen backs away, glancing self-consciously at the bedroll and small arrangement of belongings in the corner. “Oh, uh. One of the hounds was sickly last week, it just–” He shrugs.

Peridan grins, “I do not blame you one bit. You know, I do not live in Cair Paravel, at least not full time.”

Lanisen says, “Oh.”

Peridan shrugs, though he winces at that movement, “I do not like the hustle and bustle of castle life some times.”

Lanisen nods. His eyes track the wince, and again settle on the sling.

Peridan follows his gaze, “Riding accident.”

Lanisen says, “Ahh.”

Peridan looks around, “Mind if I sit?”

Lanisen says, “Oh, um. ‘Course, sir, here, um–” He gestures awkwardly toward a folded pile of blankets that seems to have been serving that purpose. “I can, I can get a chair, if…”

Peridan waves a hand away, “Nonsense.” He plods down on the blankets, wincing as he does so, “You never know how much you move your wrist until you break it.”

Lanisen hovers uncertainly, crossing one arm over his stomach. “Broken?” he ventures.

Peridan sighs, “Unfortunately so. So it seems that I am here for awhile until it heals.”

Lanisen says, “Seems– seems sensible.”

Peridan grins, “Well, I have been known to be sensible for time to time.”

Lanisen laughs, a little awkwardly.

Peridan chats comfortably, “I heard you were made squire after I left. I wish to extent my sincere congratulations.”

Lanisen shifts his weight from one foot to the other and back. “Thanks– thank you, sir.”

Peridan glances at Lanisen, “This probably breaks all sorts of protocol but I can blame my Narnian Ways. When it is just us, please, you can drop the title and the siring.”

Lanisen says, “Oh! I– sorry, sir.” He realizes his mistake a second later and closes his eyes briefly. “I’m sorry.”

Peridan smiles kindly, “It is quite alright. If it is awkward, please use the sir.”

Lanisen seems to think it safest to keep his mouth shut, and only nods.

Peridan tips his head, “Lanisen, why are you standing? Sit down, please.”

Lanisen apologizes and does so, perching awkwardly on another stack of blankets. A wispy-furred deerhound plods over and puts her head on his knee.

Peridan nods towards the dog, “What’s her name?”

Lanisen says, “Um, this– she’s called Nia.”

Peridan holds out his good hand if the dog wants to sniff his hand.

Lanisen nudges the old hound that way with a murmured word of encouragement. Her tail flips amiably and she licks Peridan’s hand.

Peridan speaks softly, “Hello there, Nia.”

Lanisen watches. Nia seems willing enough to be friends, but after a moment she draws back to circle and flop on the floor at Lanisen’s feet, licking her front paws.

Peridan says, “I used to have a dog when I was lad. He was my best mate.””

Lanisen asks, “Yeah?”

Peridan nods, “His name was Dalgin. I raised him up from a pup when I was a mere boy. He helped me through a lot of things.”

Lanisen nods. He reaches down to rub Nia’s ears.

Peridan says, “He served me well. It seems that Nia also serves you well too.”

Lanisen says, “Yes, sir.”

Peridan peers at him, “You doing alright, Lanisen?”

Lanisen says, “Yes, sir. Thank you.”

Peridan says, “I will be here for awhile, if you should find yourself in need of anything.”

Lanisen hesitates, then nods.

Peridan smiles encouragingly at him.

Lanisen doesn’t quite look him in the eye.

Peridan says quietly, “I want to help you in any way I can, Lanisen.”

Lanisen says, “Thank you, sir.”

Peridan stands to his feet, “It was good to see you, Lanisen.”

Lanisen stands quickly as he does, bowing. “You too.”

Peridan makes his way down the stairs.


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