08.04.3013: Walk the Plains
Summary: Elodie joins Sirs Sammel and Nikomachos for a horseback ride on the Plains of Ares, and spends a little time getting to know some of her family-to-be
Date: 4 August, 2013
Related: None
Elodie Nikomachos Sammel 


Plains of Ares The Vale, Imperius
Outside of Phylon, the Plains of Ares stretch on for thousands of miles, from the furthest southern end of the Vale to the beginning of the Forlorn Swamps in the chill north, from the eastern coast of the continent to the western. Scattered farming communities and noble holds lie within the near endless rolling hills, surrounded by seas of grass. Ribbons and patches of water lie about it here and there, streams and ponds coming together to run into the ocean or the expanse of the Great Lake. Grain farms crosshatch large swathes of the Plains, centered around small communities that are in turn centered around Waygates, but the vast majority of the Plains have been left to their own natural devices.
4 August, 3013

A nice afternoon, which seems to be a good time for exercising the horses, and getting some air. And so Sammel's atop No Name, patting the horse gently as they're moving a bit slowly. Smiling a bit as he sits up a bit more, he looks towards Elodie now, to see how she's doing. "Quite a different climate and terrain than Niveus, but in its own way just as beautiful, wouldn't you say?" he offers.

It is a nice afternoon, and while the horse is walking, Elodie looks at ease in the saddle, letting herself move with the horse. Her eyes are on a slow, constant swivel as she takes in the terrain around her. At Sammel's question she looks over and grins with a nod. "You don't need fur here," she notes easily, although she is wearing a cloak just in case over the cream colored split skirt and her brown apron dress. The latter has been draped to the sides, and flutters with the horse's steps. She glances over to their other companion, but doesn't address Sir Nikomachos at the moment. "Yes, it is beautiful. I had no doubts."

Nikomachos is out to meet his family — old and new. He rides his great black destrier easily, as one born to the saddle, although he leans out of that saddle to speak past Elodie to his brother, "This is where you're supposed to compliment her, Sammy." His light tenor rises in an easy laugh, "It does get cold in the winter, although nothing for a native of Niveus, I'm sure, Lady Elodie." Even if they are staying near to Phylon itself, a light lance is held along the back of his saddle, the monomolecular point rising high into the air behind him, trailing red and gold ribbons that shift through the warm spectrum of colors as they flutter.

"Thanks for the wonderful advice, Niko," Sammel replies lightly, before he looks to Elodie again, offering her a smile now. "I'm very glad we finally were able to take this little ride," he offers to her. "It's always enjoyable with a nice trip out here in good company." Looking back to his brother, he offers a grin. "So, how is married life treating you?" he asks, before he adds, "Ellinor hasn't tried knocking you unconscious or something yet?"

"Cindravales even have rules as to when you are supposed to compliment someone?" Elodie asks cheerfully, glancing from Niko to Sammel. "I see I have a lot to learn…" The mare she's riding give a snort and tosses her head as a fly buzzes into her nose. Even though it doesn't really bother the gait, or the Niveun's seat in the saddle, it does catch the young lady's attention, and she focuses on her horse for a moment to make sure nothing else is going to happen that would end up with her being unseated. Sammel's question draws a chuckle from her, and she looks up again once all is calm.

Nikomachos straightens up in his saddle, laughing at Sammel's words, speaking sotto voce to Elodie, "I have to look out for my younger siblings, after all, Lady Elodie. And no, no rules, just traditions. The general tradition is, of course, 'always,' when they deserve it." The question from Sammel causes him to shake his head, "Only when we spar, Sammy." A rueful and self-deprecating smile touches his lips, "I've learned that with a blade, I am not exactly the equal of my Lady Wife."

Sammel chuckles at Niko's words. "See, had he only been that way on the battlefield as well, it would probably mean less work for you?" he offers lightly to Elodie now. Pausing a little as he sees the mare toss her head, before he offers a chuckle at his brother again. "Remind me not to try fighting against her with a blade in my hand? That would probably end quite bad."

Elodie nods. "I was about to ask where he was when those Hostiles were ganging up on you yesterday," she agrees with Sammel. "But," she returns her attention to Nikomachis, "it is very laudable of you, Lord Sir Nikomachos, to look after your younger siblings, as you have so many of them. It is much easier for me to look after younger siblings as I have only one. I cannot imagine what a trial it must be for you to look after three." She grins, her eyes alight with a bit of humor. One of her gloved hands reaches down to pat the neck of the mare as they walk.

Nikomachos laughs easily at Sammel, "You really want your older brother to be hanging over your shoulder, suggesting that you cannot take care of yourself, Sammy." Elodie's half-question causes him to shake his head, "Yesterday? I was riding against Hostiles outside Northon." That would be a small farming settlement just south of the Forlorn Swamps. "Ellie and I both were." Elodie's words cause him to laugh as well, "If Kassie thought I was looking after her, I think she could try to chop me in half with her axe." Looking over to Sammel, he flashes a grin, "Which doesn't mean I don't try, of course."

"No no, not hanging over my shoulder. Wouldn't give me the range to use my poleaxe properly, after all. But it would have been nice if you had been there to distract that second Hostile when two of them decided to fight me at the same time." Nodding a bit to the part about Northon. "It went well, I hope?" A brief pause as the rest of the conversation, before he grins. "No, no. Since you're family she'd probably just try breaking your nose or something," he offers.

When Nikomachos mentions that he was fighting Hostiles as well the day before, Elodie's gaze drops to her saddle horn as she feels the rebuke. She takes a breath and raises her eyes to look forward between the ears of the horse, straight forward, riding slightly more stiffly. "I understand what you mean," she adds in quietly. "I know Ronan gets impatient sometimes when I try to take care of him, or stand up for him. I suppose he can do it better than I can, now, but I suppose old habits die hard." There's a little reminiscent smile at the words, but she seems a little quieter, now.

Nikomachos makes a disgusted sound at the mention of Sammel's poleaxe, looking to Elodie, "You really must talk to him about that thing, by the way, Lady Elodie. It's so terribly Khourni. No style, and you can't even use it from horseback." Elodie's look downward causes him to shake his head, his light tone softening somewhat, "That wasn't intended as anything but a statement of fact, Lady Elodie." And then he looks past her to Sammel, shrugging his shoulders, "There were only a dozen or so of them, just the soldiers. We rode them down without much trouble."

Sammel chuckles again as he hears Niko's words about his chosen weapon. "Here he goes again…" he remarks, a bit lightly, before he smiles to Elodie again. "Old habits die hard, yes. I'm sure your brother appreciates it, even when he gets impatient." Nodding a bit again at the mention of the dozen or so Hostiles, offering a bit of a smile. "That's good," he offers.

Elodie nods once and glances up at Nikomachos with something of a weak smile, but she does make an effort of rejoining the conversation. "It gets the job done. Most of the time," she muses. "And since I've been hearing him lately, he does add his own sort of … panache," her smile turns merrier as she teases Sammel. "Even though some of the things he says when he falls down aren't very proper. It's a good thing I've been assigned to military as long as I have, my ears might be singed with what I've been hearing otherwise."

Nikomachos nods at Elodie, "Oh yes, he does his best to add some vague sense of style to that horror of a weapon." The teasing complaint about his brother's language causes Niko to laugh easily again, "Were you saying naughty words again, Sammy? 'Shoot, shucky darn,' and that sort of scorching foul language? Father would be so disappointed." Flashing a grin at the Iah, he adds, "He always looks so disappointed and shocked when an obscenity slips from any of us boys. I think he gave up on Kassie a long time ago, though."

"Actually, I can't quite remember what I was saying. It sort of just slipped out after that spear poked into my chest," Sammel replies with a quiet smiles, before he chuckles again now, listening to the others and seeming in a quite good mood.

Elodie tilts her head to look towards Nikomachos with an interested gaze. "Truly? I thought that swearing was supposed to be a manly thing, and prized among men, while more frowned upon among women. I am sure that Lady Ariana would turn purple hearing a lady use improper language." Sammel gets a quick wink for his comment about his own language, and it seems that the woman has almost forgotten that she is sitting in a saddle and riding on a horse, the way she is beginning to relax.

Nikomachos shakes his head at Elodie's words, "Kassie is a knight first, foremost, and only. I think the only reason I get away with trying to protect her at all is that I do the same for Sammy and Erik." Reaching up with both hands, he runs his fingers down the embroidered satin of his coat, "We Valen don't tend to worry about what is or is not 'manly.' We leave that to the Khourni, since they cannot manage polite, erudite, or complicated. We worry about propriety and courtesy instead. And style, of course."

Sammel chuckles again as he listens now, nodding a little bit. "Like I said, if it wasn't for that, she'd probably punch you in the face or something." A bit of a grin is offered to Elodie now. "Kassie is… well, she's more one of the boys than we boys at times, I guess."

"It sounds to me like Lady Sir Kassandra and Lady Sir Tiriel will either become best friends or worst enemies when they meet," Elodie muses as she listens to the men. "Tiriel is more man than many men I've met. She fights and talks and acts like one, too. Sometimes the exhasperated look I see Una give her is the same look I see women giving their husbands." The discussion of erudite and courtesy draw a thoughtful look, and then a sort of secret smile to herself as she pays attention to where they're going. "So… I think I have a pretty good of how Cindravales view the Khourni. What about House Arboren?"

Nikomachos shakes his head at Sammel, "She would use her axe, Sammmy, and you know it." He chuckles at Elodie's words, "Isn't that always the case with people with so much in common?" The question that follows causes him to shrug, "I might think them too casual, and I am not particularly fond of archery in general, but I think that has more to do with my adoration of the tilt than anything else."

"She probably would," Sammel admits after a few moments, although he offers a grin, before he nods a little bit again as he hears the rest of what's being said. "See, Niko seldom goes anywhere he can't ride and use that big toothpick there," a bit of a wave and a grin to the lance. "Those few members of House Arboren I've had any dealings with seem okay," he offers.

Elodie chuckles as Sammel gets in his dig about Nikos preferred method of fighting, giving him a 'touche' salute, before one arched eyebrow glances to the eldest. "I guess I don't have to ask how you view house Saveur, or, at least one of House Saveur," she directs towards Nikomachos. "I don't tend to have a political interest, but I don't want to make waves for you by inadvertantly saying something somewhere. What about Orelles?

Nikomachos shrugs helplessly at Sammel's teasing, "Why should I settle for lesser forms of combat?" He nods to Sammel's commentary on the Arborenin, "Sir Brienne is a good sort, although I must admit that she grew up with us here in the Vale, so perhaps that's cheating." He laughs at Elodie's mention of the Sauveurs, "Most of the Sauveurs are conscientious, brave, and dedicated. The Orelles…" he shrugs slightly, "Ric's alright. I honestly don't know many of the rest of them." Light laughter touches his lips then, "So, if I may, Lady Elodie, besides Sammy here, how do you feel about the Valen?"

Sammel smiles, looking about to say something as his brother speaks about the Sauveurs, but he decides not to. Nodding a bit at the words about the Orelles now, he adds, "Both Sir Kaedin and Lady Talayla seems like good people," he offers, before he goes quiet at Niko's question now, smiling as he waits to hear the answer.

There's a moment, and Elodie glances to the younger Cindravale, before she turns to Nikomachos. "I see you have already decided for me how I feel about Sammel," she muses, one eyebrow arching once more, with a grin. A grin that becomes a broader smile when she transfers it to her betrothed with humor in her gaze. "Although, speaking of growing up in the Vale, Ronan squired in the Vale as well, and has returned to us with a very decided sense of style, and many Valen ways. If I were to dislike Valen, I would practically have to disown my own brother, which would never happen." She glances down at her own serviceable clothing with little adornment and gives a rueful grin. "I am afraid, though, that my taste in clothing is quite a bit simpler, and more practical."

Nikomachos nods his head slightly at Sammel's words, "I cannot say that I know either of them particularly well, although Lady Talayla has an admirable restraint in a fight for a non-combatant." Elodie's words inspire a laught from the elder Valen, "Well, I just didn't want you to hold him against us, Lady Elodie." Letting his hands rest folded lightly over the horn of his saddle, he grins crookedly, "We will show you a better way, I'm certain, Lady Elodie."

Sammel smiles as he listens now, unable to hold back a grin. Nodding a bit as Elodie speaks of her brother as well, but keeps quiet for now, as he listens to the conversation with a grin.

"But what if I hold you up to him?" Elodie asks curiously. Then she laughs. "Oh, my poor sister. Having one clothes horse in the family has been traumatic enough. Now you intend to convert another?" She guides her horse over closer to No Name so she can reach out a hand briefly to Sammel, then she looks ahead. "That looks like a relatively flat plain ahead of us. What if we let our horses stretch their legs for a little? Although…" she turns serious eyes to the younger knight. "If your chest starts bothering you, don't push it. Doctor's orders." She grins at the last, before her gaze assesses Nikomachos' willingness to have a little race.

Nikomachos laughs lightly at Elodie's question, "Then you will find him a very small amount taller, but infinitely the less-stylish, Lady Elodie." The suggestion of the race causes him to smile faintly, and he shakes his head, "You two race." He points one hand up toward a small knoll a hundred or so feet off, "I'll keep watch from up there." Since there are still Hostiles scattered around the Plains. "Enjoy yourselves, and when you're ready to return for something to drink…" One hand reaches into his saddle-bag and pulls out a bottle of Valen riesling in its own self-sustaining chill-pack, "…you'll be able to find me easily."

"Doctor's orders, hmmm?" Sammel replies with a bit of a smile. "Wouldn't want to anger the doctor, after all," he adds, with a chuckle, before he grins, "But letting the horses stretch their legs a bit sounds like a good idea." A grin is offered to Niko as he pulls out the bottle. "Save some of that for us," he offers with a grin.

Elodie shakes her head. "You wouldn't want to see me when I'm angry," she tells Sammel with a chuckle, then turns to look where Niko points. She also notes the bottle he holds up, "I'm sure we won't stary far. Thank you," she says in advance for the thoughtfulness. As they pull away in a slightly different direction from the route that Niko will take to the knoll she makes a quiet wager with Sammel. Reaching the edge of the suggested plain, they pull their horses to a stand still, look to each other, and can be seen counting together before they both urge their mounts forward.
The older horse that Elodie rides has a smooth gait, and she leans forward grinning, her seat more a product of natural balance and athletic ability rather than experience. No Name could probably outrun the gallant mare, but he doesn't, although he does reach the appointed end spot half a length ahead before they both pull up and Sammel pulls around, possibly to congratulate her before they make their way back to share whatever Reisling the Saveur Knight has saved while waiting for them.

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