pecans and puppy-persuasion

Outer Ward
Castle Anvard

Lanisen has paused at a woodcarver’s stall just inside the outer curtain wall, considering a charm in the shape of a daisy.

Sehsis enters the market along with Nasrin, apparently in conversation, “-Well he ended up insulting her, though in fairness she -was- rather large. Even so”

Nasrin is laughing at the tale. “You can’t be serious, he actually said that to her?”

Lanisen wrinkles up his nose and moves on, lifting a small rose carved out of a light, vibrant cherrywood. He looks at it thoughtfully, then asks the artist a question. She responds, and Lanisen winces slightly, thanks her, and moves on. He catches sight of Sehsis and his companion, and watches curiously.

Sehsis says, “Yes, he actually did say that” Spotting Lanisen he gives him a nod in greeting.

Nasrin chuckles, a wide smile on her face. She follows Sehsis’ gaze and looks to Lanisen, who she gives a little wave to.

Lanisen ducks his head politely back, smiling in return. He pauses and glances back at the woodcarver’s table, then steps to join them.

Sehsis says, “Good day Lanisen”

Nasrin gives Lanisen a smile, before asking Sehsis, “Is this a friend of yours?”

Lanisen echoes, “Good day,” and dips his head again to Nasrin. “Are you–” he starts to ask Sehsis, speaking at the same time as Nasrin, then stops quickly to not interrupt.

Sehsis says, “We have met before” To lanisen he says in answer to the unspoken question, “She is my niece”

Lanisen says, “A, a pleasure, miss.”

Nasrin gives a small but embarrassed smile towards Lanisen. “Oh, uhm–I’m sorry about that! Yes, it’s nice to meet you, yes.”

Sehsis feels further introductions may be in order since neither seem to be about to make them, “Lanisen this is Nasrin, Nasrin this is Lanisen”

Lanisen squints up one eye at Nasrin in return, laughingly apologetic. “No, no, my fault, sorry. Nice to meet you.”

Nasrin chuckles with him. “Let’s both take the blame, shall we?”

Sehsis just nods, not having much of an input to make at this time.

Lanisen grins and lifts his shoulders. “It was my fault, but if you insist.” His eyes slide to Sehsis. “I was, I was wonderin’, I don’t want to take up any of your time…”

Sehsis says, “Oh no, you’re not taking any up”

Lanisen says, “‘S very kind. Um, are you here on business, are you sellin’ anything? Only I’m tryin’ to find somethin’, a gift for my little sister. She’s always wantin’ to travel, so I thought…”

Sehsis asks, “I was showing Nasrin around, but if you’re looking for something in particular I can see what can be done?”

Lanisen takes a step back. “Not, sorry, not today, I can see you’re– um, just, since you’re in the area, I wondered…”

Sehsis says, “Really, it isn’t a problem, there is no need to be so apologetic”

Lanisen says, flustered, “Sorry.”

Nasrin glances between the two. “Am I interrupting something?…”

Sehsis says, “Not that I know”

Lanisen says, “No, no, I am. Um, thanks for your time, Master Sehsis, I’ll–” He bows slightly and takes a step back, preparing to move on. “Have, have a good afternoon.”

Sehsis seems a little puzzled but nods, “And you too”

Dalia comes walking out of the inner ward into the outer ward

Nasrin looks slightly bemused but nevertheless nods. “Goodbye now!”

Lanisen rubs the back of his neck as he turns to walk away, making a self-chastising sort of grimace.

Sehsis blinks, “Strange as ever that one”

Nasrin says, “He seemed rather nice if you ask me.”

Dalia waves, “Hello Lanisen!”

Lanisen pauses, turning toward Dalia with a quick smile. “Hey, you.”

Dalia smiles, “How are you today?”

Lanisen says, “Oh,” and lifts his shoulders. “You know. Oh, we got the squirrel out.”

Sehsis says, “Nice yes, but a bit odd”

Dalia grins, “Did you? That’s good!”

Lanisen displays his palm a little ruefully. There’s a bite mark at the base of his thumb.

Nasrin cocks her head to the side. “What makes you say that?”

Sehsis waves a hand after him, “The way he behaved”

Nasrin says, “I don’t know about that, he just seemed a little stammery is all. ”

Sehsis shrugs, “Honestly I have only met him a few times, so my judgement is not based on a lot of observational evidence”

Dalia frowns, looking at the bite mark.

Nasrin grins. “It’d be like you to judge people so quickly, now wouldn’t it?”

Lanisen says, “It’s fine, it’s clean.” He stuffs his hands into his pockets. “What are you up to?”

Sehsis folds his arms, “Now, what is that supposed to mean?”

Dalia shuffles the packages in her hands which are still warm. “There was a seller in market here, had some glazed pecan pasties. They looked good so I thought I’d buy a few.”

Nasrin says, “What? Nothing. It’s just observational evidence.” Before he can say anything else, she begins walking down towards the market stalls.

Sehsis rolls his eyes and walks after her.

Lanisen turns, shading his eyes to look for the stall with the pastries. “Which stall?”

Nasrin doesn’t seem to be looking for any stall in particular. Instead, she seems happy enough to simply browse at everything on offer and seeing what catches her eye.

Dalia points to one, sorta in the middle of the market.

Lanisen asks, “What do you think? Worth it?”

Dalia says, “I haven’t tried mine yet” she offers one shifting it to her hand. “You can try it, if you like?”

Lanisen says, “Oh, no no, I trust you.”

Sehsis, after a while, says to Nasrin, “I’m going to head back into town, will you come or are you going to stay here a little longer?”

Dalia says, “Well… I will say they looked delicous and smelled wonderful.”

Nasrin pauses, coming to a stop, before shrugging. “Ah, I suppose I’m as well going back with you.”

Sehsis nods, “Very well”

Lanisen says, “May as well, then.” He checks his pocket and heads for the stall she indicated.

Dalia says, “Mind if I join you?”

Lanisen says, “Sure, of course.”

Dalia follows after, working to free the paper from her pastry. “Thanks.

Lanisen stops at the stall and takes a deep breath, appreciative of the good smells. He pauses to get out his money, then approaches the vendor and exchanges a couple of coins for a gooey pastry.

Dalia finally frees the paper from it to take a bite, “Mmmmm… It’s good!”

Lanisen picks a pecan off the top and eats it, slurping the sticky sugar off his fingers after. “You oughta point Meg to these,” he remarks.

Dalia grins, take a bite and getting some of the sticky glaze on her. “She like pastries? or pecans?”

Lanisen says, “Mm, mostly she likes sugar.”

Dalia says, “So do I. I don’t know many who don’t.”
Dalia moves out the way for other customers, “How’s the kennels these days?”

Lanisen follows her, stepping aside as somebody else moves up. “Oh, fine. Same as always. Squabbles, naps, hunts, more naps.”

Dalia nods, she makes her way towards one of the sides of the market where there is less traffic and easier to make it towards the walls, glancing back after Lanisen. “I’ve been wanting to ask…if… this probably isn’t the place,

Lanisen glances at her curiously, trailing along after her. He picks off another pecan.

Dalia finds a nice sunny spot of the wall, to lean against with nobody much nearby. “I just was wondering…please tell me if i’m bothering…how is.. if it’s not too trouble, how is Cass?”

Lanisen says, “Oh.” He studies his pecan roll. “Um. She’s, she’s doin’ fine. Got, mm, just under a month left, then she’s, um. She’s free to, to go, do whatever she likes, after that.”

Dalia nods, and seems to be rather a bit less nervious, her question asked. “That’s good too hear.”

Lanisen looks down at the roll without really seeming to see it. “Yeah.”

Dalia says, “I’m sorry.”

Lanisen shifts and straightens, drawing a deep breath as he looks at her. “Nah,” he says, finding a smile. “It’s a good thing, it’s just. Changes.”

Dalia tilts her head, clearly intent on his words.

Lanisen shrugs and looks down again.

Dalia takes a bit her own pastry, watching the crumbs fall to the ground.

Lanisen asks, “How’s–” He pauses, casting about. “Is your da still travelin’?”

Dalia says, “Ah. No, he’s back now. Trying to write a few new compositions. Course, it’s not always the really quiet reflective place if you’re trying to think.”

Lanisen asks, “No?”

Dalia says, “Sometimes is, but you know, people moving around and talking, and preparing meals and my siblings about. Can get noisy sometimes.””

Lanisen says, “Mm. Yeah, I bet. Does he go someplace else to work, then?”

Dalia nods, “Yeah. sometimes.”

Lanisen says, “Makes sense.”

Dalia nods. “Guess I should be getting back. I collected some shells today, I want to ask Milady if she thinks Mistress Lana would be interested in playing with them.”

Lanisen says, “She’s gotta be gettin’ pretty big by now, huh?”

Dalia nods, “She’s quite a little dear.”
Dalia turns to go, “Have a good day.”

Lanisen says, “Yeah. You too.” He pushes off the wall and lifts the roll slightly. “Thanks for the tip about the pastry.”

Dalia exclaims, “Welcome!”

Lanisen says, “Have a good night, Dalia.”

Edana walks into the outer ward with a puppy at her heals wagging his tail excitedly.

Lanisen is just returning to the kennel from the direction of the inner gates, holding a large slice of brown bread and a mug of tea, presumably his supper.

Edana walks toward the kennels, spotting Lanisen, and gives him a wave in greeting. “Lanisen!”

Lanisen pauses, taking a moment to find the source of the call. “Evenin’, Mistress,” he answers, turning to meet her.

Edana smiles. “Evening. Do you have a moment? I have a question.”

Lanisen shifts his weight. “Sure, yeah, what can I, how can I help?”

Edana points to the puppy who has begun running around, trying to chase it’s tail. “I was wondering if you know how to train dogs. I want to teach this one how to sit in hopes that someday he might, you know, do that.”

Lanisen’s attention shifts to the puppy and his face relaxes immediately into a smile. “Hey, buddy,” he says, and steps to the side to set his tea and bread down on top of a barrel. He takes a knee, reaching out one hand to say hello to the pup.

Megren comes skipping down the steps that lead up to the barracks and wall walks.

The puppy comes right up to Lanisen and immediately begins licking him anywhere there is skin showing.

Haft follows Megren down the steps at a more leisurely and stoic pace.

Lanisen laughs and tousles the pup’s ears, stroking his neck and back. “You got any… mm, bacon is good, little bits of meat, or if there’s any food he particularly likes? I’ve had hounds go wild for slices of apples before, cheese?”

Edana shakes her head at the puppy. “We have some of that…what do I do with it then? Do I have to hold me hand a certain way or speak a certain way?” The puppy rolls onto his back happily.

Megren’s eyes catch the playful puppy pretty immediately, and her face breaks into one of its easy grins when she spies Lanisen with the dog. She skirts a pair of arguing children to approach the place her friend is.

Lanisen says, “Oh,” and checks his pocket. He makes a face and straightens, breaking a small piece off his slice of bread. “Bread’s not the best thing for dogs, but it’s not gonna hurt him. Just so he’s interested.” He lets the puppy see and sniff the bread, but doesn’t let him have it just yet.

Edana watches quietly, observing everything he does with interest. The puppy instantly seems to be paying more attention to Lanisen.

Haft trails Megren, pausing to clear his throat at the two children, who duck their heads and look sheepish and terrified in equal measure.

Megren hangs back when she gathers what Lanisen is doing, trying to keep out of his way.

Lanisen shifts to sit cross-legged on the ground, holding the bread just out of the pup’s reach. “Can you siddown?” he asks politely, and pushes gently down on the puppy’s tail end so the direction is clear. “Siddown?”

The puppy (Finn) circles around to try and get Lanisen’s hand and ends up going around in circles for a couple of seconds.

Lanisen keeps the bread out of reach and just keeps gently and persistently working to get his point across, repeating variations on “Siddown, please,” all the while.

Finn tilts his head comically for a moment and then carefully sits down.

Lanisen immediately lets him have the bread. “Good boy,” he praises. “Good job, what a clever pup, good dog.”

Edana nods. “So you just encourage him and give him treats?” She shakes her head. “It seems too easy!”

Haft reaches the group and watches the proceedings. “Works for most critters,” he says, folding his arms over his chest.

Lanisen says mildly, still petting the puppy, “He’s smart, and he wants to make you happy. Just show him how.”

Edana looks over her shoulder at Haft and then spots Megren. “Oh hello!” To Lanisen she nods. “It is good to see how to do it properly. I want to do things right for him. Thank you for taking your time.”

Finn eats his bread bit happily and then jumps back up again to chase the tail end of someone’s dress.

Megren wrinkles her nose at the sweet scene, offering Edana a smile when she looks at her. “Lanisen’s pretty good for that.”

Lanisen stands up, wincing a little on his left leg. He grins to Megren and Haft, straightening his shirt. “No trouble,” he says to Edana. “Any time. He looks like a sweet one. Seri’s litter?”

Edana smiles. “I agree! I knew that nobody else would do the job better.” She shakes her head at Lanisen’s question and frowns, putting her hands on her hips. “I have no idea actually. My husband came back from Coghill with him.”

Haft asks, “You’re importing trouble from Coghill when it’s so readily available round here? Didn’t the Butcher’s dog just have her own brood?”

Lanisen says, “Definitely not Seri, then.”

Megren asks, “Is your family from Coghill?”

Edana nods to Lanisen and then turns to Haft. “I know right! I told my husband the same thing but men always have to do their own thing.” She rolls her eyes dramatically and then smiles at the woman. “No we are actually from Carmichael.”

Lanisen looks at Edana at this, surprised.

Megren says, “Oh, Carmichael. I’ve never been.”

Megren asks, “I’d like to. What was your husband doing in Coghill?”

Lanisen rubs his elbow absently and glances at Haft. He picks up his mug for something to hold.

Edana waves a hand. “Well he is always moving around, he is a hunter, so he was just passing through on the way back home.”

Megren’s brows lift. “Oh, my da’s a hunter.”

Edana puts a finger to her lips. “Have we talked about this before?” She pauses to think about this for a moment before smiling again. “Whereabouts?”

Lanisen sets his tea down again and crouches down to talk to the puppy.

Megren says, “I think you were there when I was talking with Deonyc — could be you mentioned it and I forgot. Da sells to the butcher and the tanner here in town. He’s got a cottage about half a day off, for the times he’s settled in instead of out working.”

Edana smiles widely. “Really? I am sure he would know my husband then, or the other way around. That is fascinating! I love the hunting community.” Finn comes to Lanisen and rests his head in Lanisen’s hand.

Edana laughs once and adds, “I bet he is the one that G is always going on about being the best in the buisness.”

Megren wrinkles her nose in thanks for the compliment. She glances at Lanisen. “I was just going to swing by on my way to dinner and ask if you wanted to get something to eat.” She returns her attention to Edana. “I’d stay to talk, only I’ve got to fit a fitting somewhere between defense lessons and seeing to the horses, and Haft’ll tease me if I skip food to do it.”

Edana laughs. “I know a few men who would say the same thing! You had better get going.”

Lanisen straightens again obligingly, giving Finn one last pat.

Finn licks Lanisen happily one last time before bounding off.

Megren says to Lanisen, “You can stay if you’re not hungry.”

Lanisen lifts his shoulders. “I’ll come.”

Edana smiles one last time at Lanisen. “Thank you so much again. I really do appreciate it.”

Haft says, “Why should I tease you about skipping meals? You skip everywhere else.”

Finn tips on his paws and falls down only to quickly jump up and run to Edana, tail between his legs.

Megren sticks her tongue out at Haft.

Lanisen ducks his head to Edana, looking both pleased and embarrassed. “Glad to help. He’s, he’s a smart one, he’ll be good for you.”

Haft shrugs, supremely unruffled. “Ain’t a lie.”

Edana smiles. “He already is.” Finn brushes up against her leg and then runs off. “I think I had better be off too….got to get this one back to his brother. Bye you all. Have a wonderful day!” At that she turns and leaves.

Megren nudges Lanisen in the side. “Should we go?” She looks over her shoulder at Haft. “Come too, if you want. The servant’s hall.”

Lanisen startles slightly from the nudge, but nods. He glances at Haft to see what he’ll do.

Haft shakes his head. “Sorry. I’d like to, but gotta get a message to the courier. I’ll trust Lanisen to make sure you eat.”

Lanisen narrows one eye at Megren at this last.

Megren opens her mouth, offended.

Haft says, “Though she is apparently hungry enough to catch flies.”
Haft waves, then turns to head toward the village.

Lanisen squints at Megren. “Flies, huh?”

Megren closes her mouth and makes a face at Haft’s back.

Lanisen laughs and picks up his tea and bread. “Come on. They were makin’ that pottage with the barley and leeks when I left.”

Megren is easily assuaged, and she makes a delighted nose and starts off that way. “I’m starving.”

Lanisen asks, “What was he sayin’ about makin’ sure you eat?”

Megren turns to walk backwards, “Don’t even start up. I can handle my own /meals/, thanks all the same.”

Lanisen asks, “What, was I startin’? I didn’t start.”

Megren says, “Sounded like you were starting.”

Lanisen says, “I wasn’t startin’.”

Megren makes a skeptical clicking noise and turns back around. “Come on, hurry up.”

Lanisen grumbles, jogging a step to catch up, “/You/ hurry up.”

Megren sprints.

Lanisen calls after her, “Bye!” and follows more sedately to keep from spilling his tea.

Megren turns again to make a face at him.

Lanisen grins at her beatifically.

Megren makes the most horrible face she can come up with.

Lanisen shrugs at a bewildered passer-by in a what-can-you-do sort of way.

Megren sucks in her lips and turns on her heel to saunter dutifully onward, in total indifference for whether he is following.

Lanisen does follow, and also doesn’t spill his tea.

Megren waits for him once she gets inside the hall.


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