07.03.2013: Careful What You Say
Summary: Michael escapes the Hospital again, gets busted, almost loses his position.
Date: 03 July 2013
Related: None
Jeremy Johana Michael Lionel Llacheu 

Motts Taphouse
The taphouse is burrowed out from the heart of one of the various elder trees that surround the Heartwood. It is dark, warm, and inviting no matter the time of day. There are not a lot of hard corners, and it feels as though the walls blend in with the ceilings that curve high above. The interior wood has been stained a honey gold, which is offset by the rosewood bar and tables. There are a couple of circular windows that have been carved from the tree trunk, though the glass is stained a soft green to continue to maintain a particular atmosphere no matter the time of day. Scattered throughout the room are tables of various size and chair arrangement, and the aforementioned bar runs along the left-hand wall. The taphouse only provides ale. Order a whiskey, you get ale. Order a martini, you get ale. The menu is also very simple with a set series of meals — breakfast, lunch, and dinner — that change from day to day. It is common knowledge that special orders or requests are always ignored.
Wednesday, July 03, 3013

Michael grins over at Llacheu, his eyes really giving away the he's telling the truth about the lack of drinking experience. He's drunk, and if Llacheu looks over at his table, there only a single pint's worth of mugs there. "I'm sure if I wander about, we'll end up in the Vale… or on the Ring." he smiles again and looks at the new ale set before him, before starting to lift it his lips. He then just sips at it, somewhere in the back of his mind the words to milk it come forth.

Rub, rub the oil into the wood. The woodsman archer works the cloth slowly and patiently over the back of the lute. Llacheu has one leg propped up with his boot on the edge of one chair where he is seated, his pipe slowly making the area where he is seated sweetly fragrant with good tobacco. He reaches over to pick up his tankard and taste his ale before he resumes care of his instrument. 16 strings bind her, a lovely rose window cut into the face. There could be stylish modern changes to the old design but it's still a lute. Though he's off duty, Llac nonetheless takes his free hand to then lay it over his chest in acknowledgement of Lionel's greeting, "Sir." But he doesn't get up. The archer's attention returns to Michael, his baritone kept low, "No, you won't. Lady Aelewen has charged me to see that you return to the hospital, whatever hospital it was you absconded from, Squire, once you have finished your next drink." He doesn't seem to mind in the least if Michael is drunk.

Jeremy glances over to Lionel, only to be whapped. He mock-glares at the Valen, "I know… I was ordering a traditional Valen drink in your honor." Let the mocking be — okay, continue. Taking a slug of the ale, he wipes foam from his upper lip with the fingers of one hand, then looks around the room, pointing out Michael a moment, "Wasn't he at the hospital?" The ranger may not really recognize the squire, but he does offer Llacheu a nod, returning the salute casually, "Sergeant, isn't it?" He could check his comm, but that would be even less efficient.

Word spreads almost as fast as it takes to travel from one waypoint to another, and since Johana had gone by the Hospital to visit a particular patient and found him conspicuously absent, the Ibrahm had simply followed a trail that led her to the Mott Taphouse. Friends in low places will do that for you, as does offering a bit of money here and there to fill in the empty places. With a grim set of her jaw, she steps inside the building, allowing her eyes to adjust to the interior, yet it takes little time to identify the person she now seeks. With an authoritative stride, she walks over to rest a hand none too gently on the shoulder of her squire. "Having a party without inviting me, Michael?"

Llacheu looks up from tending to his lute in Jeremy's direction. "Aye, Sergeant Llacheu Acanthus, Sir." Once he's finished going over the wood, the lute is carefully laid on the table so he may wipe his hands and put the oiling cloth aside. Another taste of his ale and picking up his pipe, Llac finds it has gone out. He quietly knocks out the bit of ash and starts to load in another pinch of the tobacco. The woodsman's gaze goes to studying the woman who has arrived to claim Michael.

Lionel the Mane snorts a bit at Jeremy's jibe. "I'll tell you what you can do in my honor," he mutters into his mug before he looks back over toward Llac, and then recognizes Michael. He flashes the Squire a grin, raising his glass to him before he claps Jeremy on the shoulder. "Come on, you dirty Arborenin, lets go say hello." He starts to depart their section of the bar, heading toward Michael and his company. It is then he notes the arrival of Johana, and he flashes the Young Lady a genuine, wide smile.

Michael blinks slowly at first, his ale addled mind taking an extra moment to process. Then in a delayed reaction he looks up, and swallows. "Sir… I…" he looks down and sighs, "Not a party, Sir… I just, well I wanted to see what it was like to do something I'm not supposed to. I've never broken rules before, and I've never gotten drunk…" he leaves off. Just staring at this empty food plate and the ale before him.

Jeremy pokes his tongue twice into the inside of his cheek at Lionel's mutter, then laughs lightly, taking another swig of ale — although the mug is carefully pulled away from his mouth before the slap on the shoulder. He steps over toward the tables indicated by Lionel, not even bothering to contradict the 'dirty' jab. As they arrive in time with the Squire's knight, he bows his head slightly, grinning over to Llacheu, "You might need to play something a bit lively on that lute, Sergeant, if the young man is going to dance his way out of this."

Llacheu gives up on relighting his pipe for the moment with Johana's arrival. He moves to stand instead, passing a glance to Jeremy's quip, "Me thinks he's more liable to crack his head and go ass over end, Sir." He smiles a bit though and bows to Johanna, "My lady Lieutenant Aelewen Arboren ordered I see Michael here escorted back to hospital, though if you be the Lady Sir Johanna, I think my lady Aelewen will forgive me if I leave him in your hands." Courtly etiquette isn't his best skill but he tries not to blunder it too badly.

A bit of warmth touches the Valen's eyes as he holds his gaze on his Arborenin counterpart before he flashes the gathering another boyish smile. "Sir Johana," Lionel says with a gentle nod of his chin toward the Ibrahm. "And Michael… you are looking handsome as always," he offers comfortably. He does look over toward Johana as if he might notice that there is a bit of tension between Knight and Squire, and he does his best to relax it. "There are worse things to do than to come to the peaceful Arborenin woods for a mug of ale and fresh air, My Lady… certainly you won't flaw a man for that?"

Feeling the gaze of the lute holder on her, Johana breezes a gaze over him, offering him an ever so slight nod, though she is certainly not unfriendly about it, more impatient, after having to trace down her squire. As the others approach Michael and herself, the offered smile is returned, the warmth of it reaching her eyes, a return nod to the other, though once more the look is all too brief before piercing blue eyes once more settle on the man in question. Michael. Removing her hand from his shoulder as he begins his halting explanation, she lifts her arms to cross them over her chest, a disbelieving look seeping into her eyes. Incredulously, she regards him, not speaking for a long moment, just letting the words he had given settle between them. "You were looking for trouble." The words come out flatter than she had intended, but she does not correct her tone as she continues. "It seems to me even yet, even wounded, you have entirely too much time on your hands. Still, I am much too easy on you, it appears. From now on, you will have long, rigorous days and sleepless nights. Should I go on?" Not cold, no.. in fact she cares too much. "If you are intent on becoming a Knight, then you will have to begin acting like one." At the words from the lute holder, her gaze flicks back over him once again, taking more of an interest. "Ahh.. and this Aelewen Arboren, she is now his knight to give orders in regards to him?"

Michael inwardly cringes at her flat tone, and at the same time he also gets a look of relief. "I was looking to experience whatever it was I missed in youth…" he shakes his head and drops all excuses from his mind, "Yes sir… if you sign me out of the hospital, I can return to my tasks immediately, and I'll take on more as well, if you feel it's necessary." he doesn't feel it right to offer up to Lionel anything just now, though he does smile inwardly at the compliment, "She… um, caught me. Or more I ran into her here and she sat me down. I asked her a few things, and she pointed me to you. Then she gave Sergeant Llacheu his orders, and left." he pauses, "How did…" he lets off though.

Llacheu gives a negative movement of his head, "No, Sir. But she has the ordering of myself however she likes and she was concerned for this fella here, your Squire. I was going to see he got back safely." His gaze flicks between her and Michael's rambling and the archer bows a touch to Johanna and simply steps back to resume his seat.

Jeremy shrugs his shoulders slightly at Llacheu's rejoinder, chuckling softly, "Well then perhaps you'd best not play. It wouldn't do for an Ibrahmi squire to fall down and break his crown in Arborenin." Lionel's words cause him to laugh, "Those very peaceful woods and fresh air that you keep trying to run away from?" He takes a swig from his beer, then gestures to Llacheu, adding in, "Lady Aelewen was likely just looking out for him, Sir."

'All Yours,' Lionel mouths over Johana's shoulder to Michael before he takes another gulp of the Mott ale. He does wink at the Squire though, offering his own apologies. He glances over toward Llac as he swings into a stool close by, bracing his forearms against the bar as she rubs her fingertips against the cool mug. "So… " He says uselessly, then he grins to Jeremy. "Yeah… those…"

A bit distracted in scolding her squire, Johana belatedly looks towards Lionel, eyes holding curiosity. "Indeed there are worse things he could do and usually he finds the ability to do so when he is supposed to be healing. Funny that he would worry about the cost of repairing his armor and come find a way to spend his coin than to garner more of it." Though contrary to her words, there is certainly no amusement in her eyes, belying her own words. "Experience… what you missed in your youth, Michael? Well, I believe that was Knighthood. You are now my age and have yet to accomplish that. Perhaps only now I am learning the reasons why." When the man with the lute once more speaks up, the Ibrahm heir is unable to contain the quirk of her lips as they form a half smile. "And that, I can understand. However, he has his own orders and he finds cause to repeatedly disobey them." A single eyebrow arches as she looks to Jeremy, though she does not know his name. "Again, no one would have the need to look out for him if he would remain where he is supposed to be." The mouthing from Lionel draws a reluctantly amused chuckle from her and she nods, conceding that. "Certainly he is. Unless I tire of incessant babysitting."

Michael stands up, his height taking him over eye level with Johana. For a moment there is a dark glower, "Too often the face tham I was not knight has been made light of, claiming my lack of title is result of my own mistakes." he shakes his head, "That maybe, because I choose to show respect to the woman I loved, and the knight that trained me since I was half the age of most squires starting out." the frown forming on his face, "I am sorry Sir Johana, for getting bored while cooped up in a hospital, for recovering from near fatal wounds, to only dump what you see as an unruly squire into your lap." he picks up the ale, downs it in one go and sets the mug heavily on the table. "I have not disobeyed any one of your orders. I was triaged and transferred without a word. So yes, maybe this isn't the best way to spend my time, or my coin, but for a moment it provided some measure of fun. For a minute here, I felt the same fun I feel when we spar, or when you've had me join patrol." he shakes his head, and if not stopped he'll stalk towards the exit.

Llacheu isn't saying anything now. Nope, he drinks the last of his ale and then finishes stuffing tobacco into his pipe, then lights it. He leans back in his chair as much as his bow and quiver case will allow and only watches the others, listening. The smell of his pipe is strong but not perhaps unpleasant.

Jeremy shakes his head at Lionel, "If you don't want your nose snapped of, don't stick it where it doesn't belong I guess." He chuckles softly, "If you spent more time out in the woods, you'd know that." He nods at Johana's response, "No argument at all, Sir. A squire has to do as he's told." Michael's response causes him to nod slowly. He glances over to Lionel and Llacheu, murmuring, "Better than the InfoSphere."

Lionel purses his lips a bit as he looks after Michael. He also does not remark as the Knight and Squire go through those uncomfortable motions. "Woods," he grunts at Jeremy before he swirls his mug around a bit. "Next you'll be tellin' me we're going to go off camping for a few weeks so I can learn…" He may be a Rovehn, but even Rovehn camp in style. He shrugs his shoulders a bit. "I'm not getting my nose in that," he promises Jeremy.

Amusement lightens Llacheu's pale eyes at what Sir Jeremy said. Aye, he'd agree with that but keeps silent. Either way, it's more entertaining than not. But no smiling to give that away here, oh no. Johanna might notice.

When Michael rises, he indeed is much taller than Johana, but she does not flinch when he towers over her, nor from the dark glower. Infact, as he has his say, she takes a few deep breaths, the anger building inside her channeled, tamped down until only an icy reserve rests in her eyes and a deadly calm completes her demeanor. When she speaks, there is no heated words, no angry accusations and no scolding orders. Even as he stalks towards the exit, the words are spoken as if in mild conversation. "I am unable to do anything further with you. Consider yourself dismissed." Turning back to the others, she nods to the trio calmly, politely. "Good evening. Enjoy your ale." With an about face, she also turns towards the door to head out.

Jeremy shakes his head at Lionel's words, "No… I won't be going away from a Waygate for a while. But you could…" and then Johana dismisses Michael, and he winces, shaking his head and glancing back over to Lionel. His wince turns into a grimace, and he looks to Llacheu, "And that, Sergeant, is why you don't miss off a Khourni. They let you drink your ale, and then drop you." There's no judgment there, just mild amusement.

Lionel looks after both Johana and Michael — okay, he might be admiring them both leave, but he does look a little thoughtful all the same. He glances back around toward Jeremy, shaking his head a bit. "I think there's a reason I've blacked out what it was like being a Knight." Even if Lionel's Knight had quite literally saved him from a life of insignifcance. He finishes off his ale before he gestures for a refill. He glances toward Llacheu briefly. "How's the lute?"

Oh boy. The amusement he had with Jeremy's comment about staying out of things fades when things turn more serious. Llacheu sighs, snuffs out his pipe and taps it out to roll it up into it's cloth to stuff it away into his pouch with the tobacco. He likewise picks up his lute and stands to set it into the case and close that up in preparation to depart. Llac glances back, "Khournis aren't my concern, Sir, only my orders." He lifts his chin in the direction of Michael's departure. To Lionel he adds, "Lute's fine, thank you Sir." Llac picks up the case and starts to head out.

Summary: After stepping outside, Michael and Johana talk further
Date: 03 July 2013
Related: None
Johana Michael 

The Heartwood
This is perhaps one of the largest promenades of the tree city. It spans between the large trunks of three elderwoods, branches used to support the heavy circular plaza. Residing in this promenade are dozens of stores and shops, as well as access to the lower levels of the city. Peddlers of goods move easily through the plaza, trapping visitors and natives with a hopeful sale of their unique and usually handmade goods. At the center of the promenade is a large, sprawling basin where rain water has been collected for generations creating a natural and yet man made pool. This is a popular place to cross paths with other residents of Arborenin and maneuver through the tiered city.
Wednesday, July 03, 3013

With her steps still calm, Johana leaves the Taphouse as well, not seeming intent on catching up to Michael. Once outside, she turns towards the Ways, intent on getting where she is going.

Michael stops and turns to look towards Johana, "Is that it then?" he asks, "Dismissal, because I've taken time the night before being released to go see what it's like to have fun outside of duty?" he pauses, "I'm sorry Lady Johana, I look up to you as a knight, and I want to make you proud." he drops his head, what ire he had gone before he'd hit the door, "I just… I miss her, I miss Roan and it's been hard replacing her. I was never like this for her, she gave me a list of orders and I saw to them. Day in day out… as I've done for you. Battle has shaken me, and this being wounded bit…" he drops off.

Once she has stepped outside and towards the Ways, Johana hesitates when she is hailed by her squire. She stands stock still while he makes his explanations, giving nothing away. "It's understandable you miss her. I'm not her, no matter how much you try and make me out to be. I don't do things the same way, I don't have her same temperament and I do not take well to disrespect. Perhaps I could just get you set up with another knight and that will be that. Would you prefer Sir Barton or Sir Erik?"

Michael shakes his head, "I am not trying to find another Roan. I am trying to adjust to you…" he pauses, "I've liked my squiring to you, I couldn't ask for a better knight to serve…" he looks at her, no tears but there is serious apology in his eyes, he swallows, "I've fucked up… not just as a squire, but as a man. I understand not caring, and walking away… but, if you'll give me a month, not as your squire but as a page again. I'll work, I'll prove to you I can do this. That I can be worthy of being your squire."

"I've never heard of a twenty-four year old page, Michael. Can you imagine the laughing stock that would make the both of us? You for being one and me for having one. Honestly, I know you're not happy so why not just do something that makes you happy and that's whatever it is you want. Live a little, experience getting drunk the first time, laugh, smoke, date loose women, I don't care. Just whatever it is you do… grow up. A grown up doesn't have to sneak around to get drunk or party. A grown up doesn't have to be told or scolded about remaining in a hospital to heal. A grown up knows already what's best for them and that's to remain in the hospital getting better so you can better do as you need. Just grow up Michael, then come find me."

Michael takes her words, doesn't flinch, doesn't give any emotion. "I'm released tomorrow morning… I don't need to do any of that other stuff." he pauses, "I will return to Obsidia, report as normal. See to my tasks." he shakes his head suddenly, "It isn't about being happy… and these things didn't make me happy. They gave me the similar feelings I feel when we're training together, or sparring, or even on patrol. Cooped up in the hospital, all I wanted to do was feel like that again. To practice sword work, or polearms with you, hells to clean your armor even. Any of that, that is what's fun for me."

"I'm not one for second chances, changing my mind or going back on my word. If you show up in Obsidia tomorrow and report, you'd damned well better not be late. If you do your tasks, they'd better be the best you've ever done them. If you're told to do something, it better get done then and there. If you can manage all of that, and be a grown up about it, then you remain in your position. If you sneak out to party…" Johana scowls. "Save the partying for your days off, not for your hospital visits."

Michael nods once, and puts a hand to his chest in a fist. "There is no partying in my future, no slipping off to speak with anyone, and I'm not writing. I will report, I won't need to be told what to do, cause it will be done. This moment forward, since I've already tarnished my first oath, I pledge to you alone. Lady Sir Johana. All of my focus will be on my squiring to you, and I will not stray." the tone of finality in his voice, he bows and will wait until she's decided she'd like to leave.

After a long moment, Johana momentarily inclines her head. "Party, just do it on your off days, not your hospital ones. I'll see you tomorrow, for tonight, I don't see why not go back inside and finish your ale. Have someone help you back to the Hospital when you're finished. Goodnight, Michael."

"Good night Sir." is all Michael's voice allows him. He stands there, unsure if this is a test, or sincerity… it's difficult to know with her. The tight rope act he walks, even when he's not done something stupid, when he's around her flexes and threatens. Unsure of what to do, he'll just stand there for now.

When he remains standing there, Johana laughs. "Go back inside and party. I'll be by the hospital in the morning to check on you."

Michael nods and turns towards the door, he looks over his shoulder before going in. Not fully heared but his lips make both "I'm sorry" and then "Thank you." before he ducks back into the taphouse.

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