(121-12-01) My Little Runaways
Details for My Little Runaways
Summary: Eiris returns home to find out things went to hell hard in her abscense.
Date: 1st Day of the 12th Turn of 121 A.C.
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It has been well over two weeks since the tracking party headed out of Oldtown to trek and make note of animal populations and changed paths. Little has happened of circumstance upon such a journey through while away there was a raven from the troupe for Lord Ormund. A small posie of blue forget-me-nots with a small piece of parchment set with simple words.

These grew where Wildings once loved.

The group entering were boisterous and laughing as they approached Oldtown but now something seems different and they all have noted it. They enter the courtyard rather set by a calm as the sun is getting late in the sky. Amongst them is the Lady Hunt, still in that red and white layered gown but her hair is loosely braided down her back with wisps of her hair fraying here and there. There is color upon her cheeks placed there by days in the sun.

Climbing down off Petyr she moves to give him to the stable boy with her thanks. Riding gloves are removed and set to her belt before she is caught up by her father, giving her a firm touch upon her upper back. She does however briefly glance ot the tower with a measure of apprehension.

The stable boy is not the usual one, not Zhantos. He seems nervous as he takes the horse and thanks awkwardly. The arrival of the Hunts and their party have started to circulate through the Tower. Enough so that when they enter an Arana is rushing to the door, her maids trying to stop her, but the little furious lioness launches herself at Eiris.

"It's your fault!" Perfectly manicured nails scratch at the air half an inch from Eiris' face as her attendants pull her back just in the nick of time. Like an angry cat she spits out the angry tirade, "My wedding is ruined. Canceled! Because of you!" One of Arana's guards is actual noble born, so he will only face a small bit of repercussion for using the shaft of guard's spear to herd Arana back. Once there's enough space between them and Arana realizes she's not going to be able to gouge out Eiris' eyes, she spins in a huff and just as quickly as she lunged for Lady Hunt, the quicker she runs away.

After that outburst, the Tower is still and quiet. Perhaps notably like he normally would within minutes of her return. Ormund has not come down to greet her. If asked what the matter is, no one is willing to say. Waiting on her pillow though when she goes to unpack is a ring of the forget-me-nots that have been preserved. Dipped in clear lacquer and then gilded along the edges in gold and crafted into a brooch.

Asten steps up quickly as well to break up what could be a one-sided fight as Eiris stands stunned and unable to move as her hands lift to cover her face. Shaken for a time she looks to the others and Asten grasps her shoulders. "Go, see your mother, I will see what is going on. Now off with you." There are murmurs already and Eiris can feel the tightness in her chest that is bringing the curdling sensation in her stomach. She hurries then into the tower and tries not to glance at the servants as her path will hopefully take her to the only woman that is likely to offer any solace for her now.

Entering the chambers she lifts her voice which she finds oddly breathless and harried. "Mother?" She moves them to her room and upon removing her belt and setting it down she turns to see the ring of forget-me-nots. Trembling she reaches out to take it giving her a very small glimmer of hope amongst the sudden storm clouds. She slides it onto her right hand.

Asten for his part makes sure everything is underway and heads for the tower itself, climbing the levels and comes to the chambers of the Lord himself asking to be emitted in to speak.

Hanna is not home. There is a note that tells that she has gone "home" until Asten and Eiris have returned. With "Take care." that seems more warning than affectionate bidding.

Asten is informed that his Lordship is not in. That he is out searching. If pressed further the doorman acts as if he's said too much already and clams up.

Downstairs it's been hours that they've been home and it's like a ghost town in the lower levels of the Tower and the upper levels are closed to all but Hightowers. Asten was only allowed up because of his position in the Household and ony having access to Ormund's study. Even Eiris wouldn't have been allowed up. Because of Orders. The sun has set, there was no dinner for everyone to celebrate their return. Just quiet. The last time the tower was like this Asten remembers is after Juleen died, before that when Lord Marak died leaving Ormund the Lord of Oldtown. There is a bit of hope, some tittering among the court when the trumpets announce the return of the Lord. But they the hope is quickly dashed when Ormund unceremoniously just strides through the entry hall and wordlessly forlornly heads for the lift to go to his chambers.
There is also, no sign of Arron.

Eiris sits in the Hunt chambers, the brooch pinned over her heart and trying to attempt to feel calm but she is anything but. Asten eventually joins her and sees the note though her father is never one for showing his emotions there is still a sense of tense worry about his shoulders. Together they sit at the hearth and it is with his request that food is brought and it is only salted meats, cheeses and slices of bread with ale to wash down what they eat.

Ormund's return is heard and though Asten seems fit to go seek him out again he does not right away. "Perhaps you should join your mother…" Eiris slowly stands and shakes her head, "Send him word we are back. Ask him if there is something that House Hunt can do." Do not mention her specifically. "Our Lord is in need." So it is with his hand that Asten scrawls the missive to be sent by a servant to the Lord's chambers.

Then the two go back to waiting. Eiris has yet to change and still has the dust of the road on her when her father bids her to at least wash by basin. Sitting at the table with cloth and sponge, Eiris works along her neck and into her hairline as the hours grow late and darkness settles.

It is growing so late that Asten is considering going home so he does not have to sleep in the bed alone and go see how her mother is. Midnight is upon them when there is a rather weak knocking at their door.

Eiris is drowsing, watching the fire through half-lidded eyes, her head drifting to near slumber in her chair when the knock rouses them both. Asten gives Eiris a look and then he grunts, standing as his voice lifts, "Come." The chambers are not locked and he's tucking his ruffled tunic and trying to set himself to rights. Eiris pushes herself to her feet and when the anxiety had just begun to fade to a dull edge it's suddenly flaring to life and leaving her somewhat more strung out with the lack of rest. Her green eyes fasten upon the door as she stands slightly back and behind her father, the top of her ride dress flared a little due to the sponge bath.

A shade of the Lord of Oldtown lets himself in. He looks like he's not eaten or slept in the entire two weeks. "Excuse us." He tells Asten. The entryway door is not closed, making it an option for Asten to leave the chambers entirely.

Glancing back at Eiris, Asten looks uncertain for a second but clears his throat and nods his head, "Course my lord." Before she can stop her father he steps out and Eiris is left to stand near the hearth as he takes his leave and closes the door behind him. Tension fills her and she can feel her heart fluttering like some caught butterfly about to fail. Her hands curl, tightening at her sides before she wills her fingers open. She hazards a step closer but with the way she left and the reception she got the Lady Hunt looks completely unseated.

Ormund steps to the table that they have eaten at a hundred times. A worn, wrinkled note is pulled out of his breast pocket inside the stylish jerkin that does seem to fit him poorly - looser - now. The note is dropped onto the table. "We'll get to that." His voice is like wind through a chimney, coarse and hollow. He lays his hands on the backs of the chairs that are usually reserved for Lynesse and Martyn. His fingers white knuckle on the wood. "They are gone." The door seems to slam shut there and he chokes and can't say any more.

Eyes close with his words and Eiris stands there a moment feeling as if she is unable to breathe. Her chin lowers and she stares at the letter when her gaze opens. Slowly she takes a step towards him, then another and her hand reaches out lightly to rest upon one of his. Just the palm of it atop his in a bid of support. "Tell me…where. I will find them."

The hand she touches is cool and weak and does not respond. "I don't think so…" He takes in a ragged breath. "Even you can't track wind and leagues of sea. Besides, she'd just run faster. Arron, he's gone to. Searching for her. He said he knew that's what you'd want him to do. I search the Harbour every day… they took Diamond, they took Dawn, Royal, my son. My little girl. " His head hangs and tears drip onto the table and the note laying there to remind him of another talking point they will have.

Gone. They. Suddenly something shifts in her and she looks to the chairs he touches. Martyn?! She immediately feels ill and Eiris does her best not to sway as her hand lifts to his shoulder. "No.."she says and its clear that its cut even deeper now. She looks down to the letter and recognizing it she lets out a breath. "I will go, they will not be hard to spot. With the horses, the group of them. I will go as Eiris Flowers once more. I will bring them back. All of them." Desperation starts to climb in her voice.

Her hand begins to leave his shoulder and she moves about him on her way towards her chambers with an unsteady but determined step.

Ormund growls and thrusts his finger down to the floor in an angry point. He faces her and he is clammy and tears cloud his vision. "You will stay! For ONCE you will stay and you will not run away." Her note is snatched up, crumpled into a ball in spindly fingers and thrown to the floor. "She told you she would run. The maids heard her. She told you she would run and you did not tell me that. You gave me partials, bits, and pieces. I decided with the bad information that it could wait. People she trusts are looking for her. I pray to the Seven that she lets them find her. Because I will remind you, she learned from you Eiris. She is very good at running. The horses were sold in Sunspear. Arron found them. They are on their way back. My children were in Dorne! They are gone now from there thank the gods, but no one was exactly forthcoming with information. Arron's had to pick a direction and pray at this point."

"Two weeks headstart. No. You will stay." His lips glisten and he wipes at his mouth with the back of his hand and then points down again. "Why can't you just stay!?" If he weren't so weak he'd have probably screamed that, but instead, it's more like a whimper of a beaten and kicked puppy.

Gods be he stills her so sharply that Eiris head snaps back as her chin comes up. Flinching under his wave of anger she shakes and stills in her turn. Her mind reels, trying to remember details, trying to recall exactly what Lynesse said but its all jumbled at this moment as everything comes crashing in around her. Is she standing? Yes, she is but her body feels utterly numb. Slowly her head turns and she looks at her letter to him. "She made it sound like she would run if I stayed near…I thought the hope of what you were offering was enough. I…only meant to alleviate me from her misery." She sucks in a breath and closes her eyes again, slowly as she stands there beside him shaken still by his anger even when the last is a whimper. She's so young and suddenly it may become apparent how much so. Mother to children nearer her age than to his and with a whirlwind romance to guide her opinions and choices. "I did not leave. I let you know where I was going as you have always asked of me. I was not helping with Lynesse….I…I do not know how to be a mother." She says and her hand trembles at her side, firming into a fist and unfurling again as she tries to gather her breath. She is scant inches away and yet they do not touch, her sunkissed features having gone unspeakably pale as she stares at his chest.

A bit of rage fuels an angry shove that a couple of weeks ago would have been a throw across the room. But in his state, the two chairs are shoved over and he is hunched in the end and scoops the letter and presses it hard into her chest. "Read it. Are those your letters? Were they even your words!? You left! You certainly weren't here when I needed you the most! You ran away. Just like she did. She is certainly your daughter so don't you even attempt to claim otherwise. The Hunting, The Old Gods, now, The Running. Before you, she was the Queen. Now, now she's the little runaway that has stolen my heart. Just like her mother." He makes a sickly bow to Eiris and then he just sort of collapses. Sits on the side of one of the fallen chairs.

Startled again, Eiris is buffeted a bit by Lynesse' chair, the sound of fabric tearing very briefly sounds. Her hand lifts then to the paper thrust into her chest and she grasps at it. Every instinct tells for her to go, to take her presence and leave the family she suddenly shattered but then the letter and his words shore up that decision and leave it aching heavy in her chest. The guilt is clear upon her brow and she needs a moment to focus as it all lays heavily upon her like some black cloak she cannot take off. She chose this and now it is all her's and her breath heaves in but still, she feels so light headed. She moves then, taking a step towards him and comes up short as her legs give and she slumps downwards in a pool of skirts as her head bows, hands curling around that paper she holds. Tears start to flow then, quiet at first as they hit her dress and her hand. She has failed him, so utterly misstepped and not even realized it. Martyn and Lynesse went and every part of her wishes to fall away. She bids the numbness back and can not. Her head moves than her forehead brushing his knee. Two weeks..that is all it was meant to be. A planned trip to let the air clear and in good timing. She was escorted he had known. But she, in her effort to appease Lynesse and mend things had forgotten a key detail. Had missed the warning signs and left him to deal with them.

Like the bellows of a forge, Ormund makes such sounds as he fights to breathe. One hand rather kerplops down onto her head on his knee and he just tries to breathe. Gasping for breath, choked by his sorrow.

Asten has left word that he's gone to find Hanna and be with her.

Eiris remains where she is, a full gasp escapes her. "My boy….oh Lynesse.." she is aching, the sound of her voice is heavy and twinged with pain as his hand nearly gives her permission to speak. She moves forward then if he does not stop her and her head finds his chest as her hands' press to his stomach as if hesitant to hold him as the torn fabric of her dress lingers behind her.

The hand in her hair tightens a little bit. Again he doesn't have much strength to do any harm whatsoever but the grip is there. "You will stay." He lets go and struggles to get to his feet and start shuffling for the door, to leave her behind. Leaving her with one final word for the night, to sit in these chambers alone and think about all that she's done and what she's going to do about it while he returns to his study to continue to scratch his name onto pieces of paper he doesn't care anything about anymore. Robotically just signing line by line by line. He will come to loathe some of the events that transpire because of what he signs. His popularity will fall, but that all means nothing.

Not when the woman he gave everything to is an,


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