02.06.3014: A Drake In Landing
Summary: Anabethe goes to visit Emund.
Date: 14 February 2013
Related: None
Emund Anabethe 

The Regnant's Sitting Room, Royal Tower, Landing
6 February, 3014

Emund III Sauveur is a busy man, as the cameras following him for H.N.N. proved not so long ago. But that doesn't mean he can't (eventually) pry away some time for a friend who goes way back. The King Regnant sent word that he would be happy to see the Young Lady Khournas at about this time in this sitting room — or at least the King Regnant's secretary sent that word. Emund probably would have used a lot fewer words and said 'come have a drink.' The King awaits the Young Lady, sitting in a wing-backed chair across a little side-table from an identical seat of leather and rich, dark wood. A bottle of dark brandy and a couple of snifters sit on the table, and the King peruses through a datapad while he waits.

"Oh, I see how it is now," Anabethe grins as she makes her way in, no doubt giving some poor secretary conniptions over the lack of formal announcement or fancy clothing. "You get yourself promoted to king, and suddenly it's only the good stuff." She's collected a few new scars since the last time they had a chance to get together, but she's otherwise the same. Except, perhaps, for a few more lines around her eyes from too many late nights over papers.

Emund himself has changed out of his formal attire from whatever event he had to attend today and into a simple doublet, shirt, and pants. He rises to greet his visitor with a quick hug, then gestures back to the brandy. "Of course. Would you like sniff?" There's a small smile on his bearded face, but he looks to have aged ten years in less than one. "Have a seat, Bethe. How can I help you?"

Anabethe returns the hug with one of her own, full-bodied and unselfconscious. "No help," she says firmly. "Sounds like you've already been doing this king thing for too long if you think your friend just wants something from you. I wanted to check in on you," she admits as she moves toward the chair, dropping down and leaning forward to set her elbows on her knees. "I know there are some good Hostile reasons you're busy and all, but it seems like we haven't talked in ages."

Emund shakes his head, reaching up to scratch at his bearded jawline, "Sorry. Most everyone who comes by wants something from me. Now, I just want you to sit down and have a drink." He reaches over to pour two snifters, then sets the glass decanter down. Taking one snifter up, he leans back in his chair, slumping a bit, "It has been forever. I'm sorry about that. It's just… there's so much to do, and it sounds like you've been keeping ourself rather busy too. Factories and explosions and patrols and all of that."

"All of that," Anabethe agrees with a roll of her eyes, taking one of the snifters and drinking a bigger swallow than she ought to. "It's been like boot camp for paper work. Only without the satisfaction you can get from boot camp, you know? The whole explosion thing at least came with an adrenaline rush." She pauses, wrinkling her nose. "And more broken ribs, but that's a hazard of the job. You still getting a little time to yourself?"

Emund takes a sip of his brandy, showing the refined Sauveur manners that even his Ibrahm wife could not beat out of him as he lets the liquor linger on his tongue before swallowing. "A little. I have some time to read in the evening, and I get some training in, at least." He takes another sip of from his snifter, looking down at the dark liquid. "But there's always something more to do. You know how it is."

"Sure." Anabethe leans back, crossing her legs and letting her head rest against the back of the chair. "Izzy would knock me upside the head if I didn't make sure you were getting some time to actually enjoy life, though," she says more quietly. "We were supposed to be doing this whole thing together, you know?"

Emund draws in a slow breath at the reference to his late wife, lowering his head a little more to study the brandy more intently. "Yes…" his voice is quiet, barely more than a whisper, "It was supposed to be totally different than this." And then he draws a slow breath in, and steadies himself, looking up again, "But this is how it is. And we must all do the best that we can with what we are allotted in life."

"Something like that." Anabethe takes another drink, foot swinging in idle circles. "Had Benedict Orelle in a training exercise not so long ago," she notes in a slight change of subject. "He was better than I expected him to be. So there's a little more hope for the future. You're not letting the old guard push you around, are you?" she asks, looking over with an arch of her brow.

"Good." Emund nods his head, "If Esiah and Aryn can work together, and Jevon and Kallista, then I'm sure you can get along with the other Young Lords and Young Ladies. Sir Benedict is a good man, from what I've seen of him, and a valiant fighter." Of course, since the King called him 'Sir Benedict,' it's not likely that the Young Lord is more than an acquaintance. The question causes him to shake his head just a little, "There is wisdom in experience, 'Bethe. With the weight of Haven on your shoulders, you can't go too fast."

"Not too fast, sure," Anabethe agrees, shrugging. "But, you know. Just remember, you're the king. And it's smart to take advice, but you're also going to be the one who takes the blame for the decisions you make, so you might as well make sure you've got a say in them."

Emund frowns slowly as he straightens up a bit in his seat. His hand comes up to stroke his beard, and he measures his words before he settles his gaze on Anabethe, "You think that I'm not making my own decisions, 'Bethe?" Setting his glass aside on the side-table, he laces his fingers together over his lap, "Do you really think so little of me?"

Anabethe uncrosses her legs enough to push at the table between them with one foot. "Don't get all huffy, your majesty," she drawls, looking back with an arch of her brow. "I'm just making sure you're not letting them wear you down. Because I saw that broadcast just like everyone else, and I know what my schedule looks like, and I know what my father's schedule looks like, so I know sometimes it's a lot easier to just let someone else handle it. That's all."

Emund looks down at the movement of the table, arching an eyebrow, "Are you scared I'm going to come across the room at you?" Now he's just teasing. Well, mostly. Letting out a sigh, he shakes his head, settling back in his chair, "I haven't become that guy, 'Bethe. I'm not going to let anything slip off my plate that needs to get done." His hand comes up as he runs his fingers back through his long hair, "No matter how much the Crown Council tries to help, it does all come down to me."

"Come at me, bro," Anabethe grins, taking another drink with a wink. "I'm not super worried about it, Emund. Just want to make sure you're all right. I mean, who else are you talking to these days if you haven't had time to visit with your good friend Anabethe?"

Emund shakes his head at the grinning words, then shrugs a little at the question that follows, "I speak with all of the Lords and Ladies Paramount, although not as often as I would like. Mostly, I see the members of the Crown Council. I see a good deal of cousin Bernard, in case you're worried about me not seeing people my age."

Anabethe wrinkles her nose, making a face. "I should be worried that you're spending time with Bernard," she snorts softly. "Hey, anyhow. I was thinking I might go down to the Necropolis, say a few words for Izzy. So I figured maybe you might want to come with. I mean, I get it if it's not a comfortable thing for you," she adds quickly, looking away uncomfortably.

Emund laughs quietly at the response, although the shift in topic sobers him quickly, one hand rising to brush down the bristles of his beard. Looking down again, he studies his hands in silence for a long moment. "I'd like to, 'Bethe. I really would. But beyond a few trips to the Grand Chantry, I haven't been on Primus since the first wave. With those hundred Hostiles still at large on the surface, my guards say it's not safe for me to go there."

"If you're not safe with me and a company of Drakes, who're you safe with?" Anabethe arches a brow at the king, taking another drink. "Not like we have to tell anyone. And not like they can give you a curfew, either. We'll take an hour, go visit, come back again before anyone knows we're gone." She pauses, grin flashing. "I've gotten remarkably good at a few unnoticed absences lately."

Emund shakes his head, "It's not that, 'Bethe. If I bring enough soldiers to hold off 100 Hostiles, then I weaken the defenses of Landing by that many soldiers." The words that follow the grin cause him to frown just a touch, but he stops himself before he says anything, just shaking his head, "Don't get yourself hurt, 'Bethe. You know what this war and politics will demand. Don't get yourself hurt."

"Again," Anabethe corrects, raising a finger. "Don't get yourself hurt again, Bethe." She shakes her head, looking around the room. "I already got myself hurt by following along with what everyone else told me was best for the people, Emund. Nic? Not best for the people. Or for me. I'm using my own judgement these days, and I trust it."

Emund nods at the correction, "Again." And he nods again as she continues, "If he wasn't an absolute shit," a rare curse from the Sauveur, "it would have been a good match. So long as you're using your judgment, 'Bethe, not just desperation for someone who sees you as someone besides the Young Lady." There, he's made it quite clear that he's not speaking about being hurt in combat. Collecting his glass again, he looks down into the brandy, "I understand the need though. Crone knows that I would give almost anything to have Ysabella back."

"You and me both," Anabethe sighs, looking down into her glass with a frown. "I miss talking to her. For a decent, non-girly and yet still girl perspective on girl things." Because that makes sense, right? "For things I hadn't figured out yet." She reaches up to rub a hand at the back of her neck, quiet. "I can only imagine what it's like to find that and then lose it."

Emund looks up, his dark blue eyes… not empty, but opaque, almost flat, "May the Father never judge you so harshly as that, 'Bethe." The words are a murmur, and then he draws a breath, sitting slowly back up in his chair, "But many, many of my people, of our people, are going to experience it. That is the price of these Wars. Apparently, the price of misunderstandings and festering hatreds gone too far to be rational."

Anabethe grimaces at that. "Human or not, they've gone off the deep end either way," she drawls, shaking her head. "They still attack us. And that means we still defend ourselves. I'm sure there are going to be people who want to talk negotiations. That's not what I do. I'm here to fight them when they attack us."

Emund shakes his head, "I'm not just talking about the Hostiles. I'm talking about Havenites too, 'Bethe." He takes a sip of his brandy that might be trending just barely toward a 'slug,' then sets his glass down again, "But of course, so long as they're attacking us, we can't exactly stop defending ourselves, can stop the slaughter of thousands of men and women."

"And even if we could, there'd be hell to pay in riots from people who just see us not protecting them," Anabethe sighs, tossing back the last of her drink and pushing up from her chair. "I should let you get back to all that important work and the like," she says regretfully. "But let's not let it be so long before the next time, okay? And if you decide you want to come to the Necropolis, let me know. I can free up a small squad to come with."

Emund tilts his head slightly at the suggestion that 'we' was anything less than 'all of Haven,' but he nods at the words that follow her rise. Sighing, he pushes himself up from his chair with both hands, a motion eerily reminiscent of his father. He nods slowly, "Thank you, 'Bethe. For the offer and for just stopping by to check in. Take care of yourself out there."

"Oh, you know me. Ribs and lungs are replaceable, right?" Anabethe smiles crookedly, stepping over to give his shoulder a squeeze. "You take care of yourself, too. And your eyes," she adds, rubbing at her own. "Damned paperwork does more wounds to eyes than Hostile axes do to my ribs."

Emund shakes his head, "Don't be in too much of a hurry to replace too many parts." He reaches up to put a hand over hers on his shoulder, then to enfold the younger woman in another brief hug. "Knight protect you, 'Bethe." And then he's settling down into his chair again, reaching down for a datapad — and then the last of his brandy.

"Father guide you, Emund," Anabethe reciprocates with blessing and hug alike before stepping back and starting back out into the hall. There's noise outside, the sounds of the Khourni heir rubbing the highly-trained Sauveur servants the wrong way…but that's an old familiar sound, too.

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