Hippoi Athanatoi

Delicate Matters
IC Date: Nineday, 6th of Taisham, 1004 NE.
RL Date: April 19, 2003.
Participants: Diar Moderal and Maeve Sherazad.
Locations: Private Quarters: Moderal Manor, Caemlyn.

Summary: After becoming ill from her pregnancy during the party at the Lion's Den, Maeve has been confined to her bed by a Wisdom's orders. Naturally, Diar feels a need to visit her, despite the fact that they're still trying to make it look like he's been thrown out of the Manor, done to support the rumour that it is he who is responsible for their nanny, Tanaz, also being with child.

Barely confined to bed for a full day yet, and even now it is plain that it is doing nothing good for her mood, already made less than sunny by your sudden—and unplanned—reappearance at the Manor.

“I told you to stay out of here!” Maeve snaps at you as you enter the bedroom, and even as you closer the door behind you the irritation does not entirely leave her face. “But you’re not very good at doing what I say, are you?” she continues, now snapping now but dryly still and with a hint of reproach in her voice.

“No, not really,” Diar replies, in a manner more factual than light. Your temper seems to have pricked his, at least somewhat, yet he keeps it leashed. “Would you want anything else, my dear?” The last is said only after he’s moved sufficiently away from the door to be certain no servant has happened to put an ear to it. The first thing he does, after studying your complexion as if he were a Wisdom, is to slightly open one of the windows to let in some of the fresh, although quite cold, air into the stuffy chamber. He makes no comment as he does so.

“Yes,” Maeve answers, still dryly, “I’d like to get out of bed.” Setting her chin at a stubborn angle, she glares over at you, although the pallor of her skin betrays her; she is still most definitely better off in bed. “And don’t worry about the door, I warded it.” The last is said with a hint of challenge too it; she should hardly be spending her energy on such small details, and she seems to know it as well.

(Bond from Diar): A thread of disapproval mingles in the concern and, even, a rather ironic amusement Diar is feeling . . . feelings that play along with the temper, pricked by your own and by the discomfort you feel that has been passed on to him.

The play of a frown across his lips, but Diar pushes it away, only the faint crease at his brow suggesting it. He seats himself upon a carven chair that he had left by your bedside when he was last there, and simply . . . watches with those grey eyes of his, either searching for signs of your health or waiting for you to speak.

Falling stubbornly silent as well, Maeve is clearly not pleased with her current circumstances, and for a while she seems to take great interest in staring intently at the sheets, pulled up across her stomach. In the end, however, your presence alone pricks her temper and provokes her to speak yet again. “Why did you have to come rushing back like that? What if people realize it was all a sham?” she asks of you, not that she hasn’t questioned this already. Several times yesterday, in fact, once the Wisdom had left.

“Neither of us is known for constancy,” Diar replies with a casual wave a hand. “Rashness and heated passions are more our mark, and they will put it down to that. Let them think it’s only the sake of the child—well, the children—that brought me back.” He shifts in his seat, brushing a hand through copper locks of hair, before he adds, “And then, we return to how we were. Keep snarling until the birth, I suppose, and then I can look properly concerned . . . and after, all will be well.”

At first, Maeve continues to glare at you, seemingly intent on being irritated, but then a sigh escapes her. “I cannot possibly stay here for ... Light, a month or even more.” There’s a faint hint of desperation in her voice now, although frustration is foremost. “Perhaps another Wisdom can be called here tomorrow, or the day after? I already feel much better, truly.”

(Bond to Diar): The bond, however, suggests that this is not entirely true. If not as weak as yesterday, she still feels considerably weaker than she normally would.

A measured silence and then Diar murmurs, “There have been times when you swore that you did not want to ever leave that bed.” The tone is dry . . . and the eyes sparkle a little with amusement and the briefest spark of heat soon dampened by an uncomfortable gravity. “Another Wisdom? We could ask, certainly. It will not hurt to have another opinion. But . . . you do not seem very well, if I may say so, my dear.”

A scowl flashes across her face then, and Maeve mutters, “Perhaps I’ll be more careful about that in the future, to ensure no further ... accidents. Kicking you out of the bed for good might not be such a bad idea, after all.” Another sullen look at you, and then yet another frustrated sigh. “I thought I wouldn’t have to do this again. Things had gone so much better this time, at least up until now.”

A wry smile touches Diar’s lips at that muttered complaint and threat, no doubt quite aware that that won’t last. But to the rest . . . “Well, it’s not so bad, my dear. You can read and be pampered . . . Well, I know that won’t please you that much. But still, what’s a month? And perhaps the other Wisdom will be a little more optimistic . . .” Well, it’s clear he’s trying to sooth you more than anything.

She doesn’t quite roll her eyes at you, but certainly comes close. “Read and be pampered? Oh yes, of course, what I always dream of,” Maeve dryly tells you, her frustration seething just below the surface. “Light, but I will go half mad being stuck in here for a month! Whatever the other Wisdom says, I will not have it,” she then growls, once again giving you a challenging look.

“I do not believe you can argue the matter,” Diar responds casually. “You are too far along with child for me to take over my knee, but . . . I will think of something.” He watches you carefully, perhaps knowing that you might try and throw some handy object at him, but he presses on even as he does so. “Perhaps we may convince the other Wisdom to allow you to take a brief walk, in the house or to and from the stables, every day, if she is otherwise in accord with Wisdom Berra. Or perhaps every other day.”

By the way Maeve takes a quick look around, it would indeed seem she is looking for something suitable to throw at you. Unfortunately—or, from your perspective, fortunately—she comes up empty-handed. “You ... you pig!” she growls at you instead, glaring at you with a small storm brewing in her eyes. “It is your damned fault that I am stuck here, you know,” she continues then, conveniently forgetting her own role in this ... predicament.

Diar chuckles softly. “I admit my fault. I also admit that I can’t feel particularly apologetic about it,” is Diar’s light response, “given how much you enjoyed the initial experience. Not that I can pin-point just which one it was . . . but then, you never have any complaints, do you?” A sly smile, and perhaps there’s heat in his half-lidded eyes before he glances away where a pitcher and basin stand. “Would you like some water, my dear?” he asks solicitously.

“Well ... I do now!” Maeve hotly responds, then falls briefly silent before nodding curtly. “Yes. Please.” A hint of a smile touches her lips with the addition of that second, faintly unexpected word, and it isn’t exactly the most trustworthy of smiles ...

Diar sits still, watching you for a few heartbeats, before he stands and makes his silent way to the table. The pitcher is taken up and water is poured into a glass. When he returns, he offers it to you . . . and murmurs, “I trust you won’t take this moment of kindness as an opportunity to throw the glass at me. Nor, for that matter, the water the glass contains.”

Snatching up the glass, Maeve glares at you for a moment or two, clearly considering doing just what you asked her not to ... In the end, however, she sighs unhappily and simply drinks from the glass instead, before handing it back to you. “That’s unfair. Who am I supposed to throw things at, if not at you? You said I couldn’t throw things at the servants, after all.”

Diar smiles as he deposits the glass from where he took it and then resumes his seat. Once comfortable he replies, off-handedly, “Perhaps the children would enjoy dodging your pitchers and chamber pots.”

“Delara would throw them back,” Maeve is quick to respond to that. Then, she pauses thoughtfully, before shrugging her shoulders. “But that would give me something to do. Still, I would rather not aggravate either me or them any further.” They may both be pleased that you are finally back at the Manor, but Delara has made it plain that she is rather less pleased with the prospect of a new brother or sister.

“I’d suggest not throwing anything, then,” Diar responds in that smug way of his. “Or perhaps I should get you a lapdog to keep you company? You can throw a stick at it when you feel like.” He seems to be enjoying the relative safety that your bed-ridden condition gives him—at least, when he’s not in the bed with you, which is certainly out of the question for the time being.

“Maybe I’ll have you play my lapdog. That might be amusing, at least,” Maeve snorts at your suggestion, although her mood seems at least marginally improved. Still, her frustration clearly lingers, and her temper would no doubt be easily pricked once more. “I still think this is all your fault, though. Why, look at Tanaz. She is as healthy and happy as anything, so surely it must be something you do wrong.”

A smirk at that, and Diar merely replies, “Perhaps I’ve taken rather more out of you than Father takes out of Tanaz. He is, after all, not as young as he once was. Vigor goes . . .” Oh, he’s enjoying himself much too much, and all at your expense.

Scowling, Maeve props herself up to a more upright position. “You’re hardly an eager twenty any longer either, and you’re definitely not too much for me to handle,” she mutters at you, knowing well enough that the added stamina resulting from the bond has worn her out once or twice already. Perhaps that is why she is so quick to change the subject. “But speaking of Finar ... have you had a chance to see him yet? He might want to know what is going on, I suppose. And no doubt, so will Relana.” She makes something of a face as she adds the last bit.

“No, not yet,” Diar replies. “I’ve hardly had the chance, my dear. Perhaps I’ll send a message to him, to let him know. He can choose to tell Lady Relana as he pleases.” He shifts again in the seat, a little restless perhaps, but he seems happy enough smirking at you, not deigning to swoop down on any easy openings you give him.

“Who no doubt is expectantly awaiting her third grand-child,” Maeve very dryly comments, now giving in to the urge to roll her eyes. “Not that she will have any others ... right?” A little glare is cast your way, although a hint of a smile does curve her lips; suggesting that she at least mostly trusts you. At least at the moment.

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