Duskshire: Strategy Meeting
June 6, 2018, 9 p.m.
Arx - Ward of House Valardin - Laurent Manse - Main Hall
Comments and Log
Quill, the grunty little porcupine arrives, following Paige.
The parties investigating the issues at Duskshire have returned and a small meeting is put together to discuss the next inevitable steps that will need to be taken. A table in the main hall has been set with some finger foods and drinks and Cristoph waits near the hearth for everyone to begin to arrive. His expression is distant and his manner not as easy as it might normally be, he's alert and present. The chalkboard on wheels has been rolled out to help chart things.
Norwood has settled to Cristoph's one side with Queensguard settled over the the back of the chair. The knight has his arms on his chest. His eyes are on the chalkboard, but there's no volunteering going on to be scribe for this little meeting.
Paige arrives promptly and moves directly towards the table. She pauses long enough to sweep into a bow for Cristoph, offering greeting, "Duke Cristoph Laurent. Its good to see you again." She straightens and moves to take a seat at the table, though she abstains from drinks for now.
Quack. Quack. Honk. Clang clang, clank. These are the cacophony of noises that are now following Daemon in his wake, as a fully armored knight with a new feathery friend that enjoyed making themselves known. As he passes through the door to the manse, he turns to Cristoph and Norwood to present the pair with a deep, respectful bow. "Duke Cristoph. Sir Norwood. Pleasure, as always." His beaming smile turns its light to Paige next, who he greets with a dip of his chin. "Lady Paige."
"Mistress Fieldstone." Cristoph greets, moving to the chalkboard. It's okay, Norwood. He'll just do ALL THE WORK. Ah hem. He takes up a piece of chalk and starts sketching out a rough map of the buildings and terrain that make up the central area of the Duskshire, along with a very nicely done river. "Welcome to my home, help yourselves to something to drink and eat." He looks at Daemon's duck and squints but shakes it off. "We're going to take that keep back. Does anyone want to fill me in on anything important? I've read a lot of reports about people wanting to behead Sir Norwood, something about wasps and also ducks."
Not long after Paige arrives, Genevieve follows her into the hall with those light, self-assured steps of hers -- a relaxed upright gait that borders on a confident march. She also nods to the Cristoph in a neat, correct fashion. "Duke Cristoph." Then it's off to find a seat, upon which she sits down carefully. She pours some water from a pitcher into a mug before placing the larger vessel down, slowly sipping at her drink and picking at morsels of food. She gives nods to all, with a deeper one to Norwood. Almost as though he knows something that the others don't.
Jimbo gets a smile from Genevieve though. What a cutie.
Paige returns the smile to Daemon, motioning to the seat near her even as she greets him, "Sir Dracone! Come, sit, there's good food and drink." She seems highly amused by something Daeemon's said but waits to see if he'll sit near her before responding. Genevieve gets a bright smile as well, along with a nod, before looking back to Cristoph with a small shake of her head. She has nothing to report.
Hey, if Cristoph went 'go stab that', Norwood would be the first to volunteer. But writing on the board for the class is a bit much. Norwood stands when Cristoph asks for information. "The wasps and ducks were unfortunate run-ins. I believe Daemon would be better to fill in with regards to the creatures we have encountered." A nod to the knight before Norwood continues. "So far we've found at least three entrances to the Keep. The front gate, very much a bad idea, a tunnel that is well guarded and the Shav are aware we know about, as well as a back gate that might be our best point of attack."
Daemon takes the offered seat besides Paige with a quiet 'thank you'. Jimbo in the meanwhile takes to pacing in a circle around the table, pitter-patering with purpose as he marches. "I'm curious if we've managed to identify the tribe or group that has overtaken the Keep. It seems from how they reacted to seeing Queensguard, this has been a long-running conflict." He shifts his emerald eyes between Cristoph and Norwood. "I apologize deeply for my ignorance, but I didn't want to bog down the battlefield with these questions. I realize diplomacy is out of the question, but perhaps learning more of their origins may provide an advantage in the inevitable retaking of the Keep?"
Caring nothing about pose order, Genevieve adds, "There was mention of a Smirking Clive, I think, when Jeffeth and Jon went down into one of the tunnels." She bites her lip, frowning as if trying to remember something. "'You're not Smirking Clive' were the exact words, I think."
"Okay, where are those?" Cristoph is handing the chalk off to Norwood. There's no escape from the blackboard so easily! "How many people are you expecting holed up inside of the keep itself? Can we send a bunch of people in a shield formation to knock the gate down?" He listens to some of the other questions and nods, processing. To Daemon, "The area around Duskshire is home to several different small tribes of Abandoned. At different times over the last several decades, there have been various skirmishes over it. I'd say around twenty years ago was the last time my father tried to clear the location out. Sir Norwood was likely there and I'm sure they know him from that and his reputation throughout the duchy itself. I don't imagine they care for him much." Mention of the man's name has him frowning, "Smirking Clive is a /terrible/ name. Is it possible he's their leader or a point of contact outside of the Keep?"
Quill, the grunty little porcupine leaves, following Paige.
Oh snap, Cristoph got Norwood. With a resigned sigh Norwood heads to the chalkboard and there are some serious SQUEEEEEEEEEKS that happen as Norwood draws a rough sketch of the area around the keep. (It's like squares labeled 'keep' and a circle with 'tunnel' and so forth.) "With the number of times they have asked for my head, demanded it in fact, is a pretty clear indication they're not fond of Laurents." Or NOrwood specifically. "Most of the Shav seem to have cared for the land well enough, so there might be an in with some of the tribes if a third party negotator was to take the lead." AKA, NORWOOD IS NOWHERE NEAR. "I believe Smiling Clive is the same Clive I //almost// killed all those years ago before the coward turned and ran for it. He would know Duskshire like the back of his hand."
Nods and more nods are the signs that Genevieve is listening very carefully to the matters being discussed, but there's a little raise of one brow when Norwood puts emphasis on the //almost// with regards to Smirking Clive's lucky escape from the SWORD OF ARTSHALL (get his head). Oh, that old murderhobo! In any case, she picks at food all the while. Lots of food. Drinks water. Picks at more food. And waits for another good time to chip in her opinion.
"No one specific then? Besides this... Happy Clive." Daemon's smile thins a bit, though his eyes remain firmly upon the chalkboard as Norwood takes the lead in chalking it up. You go, Norwood! "If it's only some tribes rather than /all/, perhaps treating with them is indeed a possibility. At least it may help if hostilities continue even after the keep is retaken from its current occupants.Better yet, perhaps some of them know the population better than we. Not that they are particularly fearsome. They did buy I was in fact, a dog." There's a tilt of the head, a gesture that just says 'yep'. "Either way, going through the tunnels seems a difficult problem with the small spaces. I imagine it'd have to be a an open battlefield."
And chip in Genevieve does, "We could send bloodhounds down the tunnels, maybe?" Then she pops another grape into her mouth and slowly chews.
Adds, "Just to see what they can sniff out. I don't know."
"Or perhaps this Smirking Clive told everyone there a bunch of stories about Sir Norwood, since it sounds like he nearly killed him." Cristoph is turning an eyebrow onto the Sword of Artshall. He regards the map of Duskshire and points at the tunnels and then at the gate. "If they're not overly fearsome and are willing to believe that Sir Daemon is a dog, perhaps we can bluster. I doubt they have anything close to an army in there, they're just making use of the walls and know how to sneak in and out. However, if someone made a lot of noise at the gate, they might all rush there to defend it. Then a smaller group could slip through this tunnel or the 'back gate'."
Norwood draws one last arrow and points it at the back of the keep then labels it "Back gate???" with all the question marks ever after it. "Perhaps a two pronged assault if we can gather enough forces to do so. A small group to go down the tunnel, and another to come in the back gate?" Norwood examines the different places on the map with a serious eye. "There's also those white flashes we've been seeing. It's possible there are non-combatants in the keep we need to be aware of."
Taking a break from her scoffing of finger foods, Genevieve dips a few vigorous nods at Norwood's words. "Yes, the white flashes. I saw a woman in the keep, and then closer to us when Sir Norwood, Sir Jeffeth, Jon and I were standing by the cave. That was very odd. Presumably in the latter case, more tunnels. In the former, there's got to be more people in the keep. How many, I don't know." More food plucked and devoured. This woman is HUNGRY. "I'll join whichever group might be able to use my skills, if it's required." A big swig of water from the mug then.
Genevieve clarifies, "A white flash closer to us, not sure if it was a woman."
Norwood adds, "What she said."
"I made a pretty good dog..." Daemon murmurs more to himself than anything while the three of them continue to chat business, his eyes still staring at the chalkboard as it is filled with more and more information. "I can confirm those white flashes as well. I had the oddest sensation of being watched while we were just exploring the grounds. Usually, just being watched doesn't provoke that kind of reaction. But then again, it was a rather creepy and dangerous place on top of that. Gave me scratches and the occasional 'ouchie boo-boo'." He nods with total conviction. "A two pronged assault could work well, though I'd imagine we'd want to divert the majority to the gate. Make sure they aren't heavily guarding the tunnels, as that could get quite messy. A mess is bad."
"Did the person seem distressed?" Cristoph looks between Norwood and Genevieve, frowning hard at Norwood when he remarks 'that's what she said'. When Daemon further explains the sensation, a knowing look crosses his face and he pats Norwood on the shoulder. "Maybe it's the 'ghost' of Duskshire. Your grandfather used to talk about her all the time. A former baroness or something from when /he/ was a child." He chuckles a little to himself as if he doesn't very much believe in any sort of ghost nonsense. "Probably someone spying on you through the windows. Sounds as if a nice, loud diversion at the gates would work well. Anyone interested in leading that?"
Genevieve pipes up again, "She looked... sad." Frowning, she shuts her yap again.
"With everything that has happened, the reality of ghosts is actually on my list of things to believe in fullheartedly." Stepping forward Norwood reaches out to take Queensguard up in his hands. "As much as I would love to be in the group attacking, I believe I would be the best suited for that loud distraction. They have a singular attention on killing me, and that would be all the distraction we could want."
"I'm afraid I only caught flashes of the white," Norwood adds belatedly. "Not sure if she was happy or not."
Doesn't have anything to say right now. But gosh. This food is delicious.
"I couldn't tell you if she was happy, sad, or anything else. Though a ghost... Hm. That does sound plausible." Daemon remarks in kind, rubbing at his bearded chin a moment as Jimbo makes his 42nd round of the table. "After all, perhaps the Baroness can't properly leave with all of these non-Laurents occupying her home. That must be terribly sad." The cheerful knight frowns, a somber expression looking unnatural on his visage. "I must admit I am also not entirely suited to leading troops. I'm much better /as/ a troop... Though I am quite good at talking. Exceptionally good at talking in fact. I talk all the time! Sometimes it can be put to good use too. If... We need talking, that is." His expression goes a tad sheepish. "Ahem... Talking or swordsman, those are my best roles by far."
Cristoph leans over and watches as the duck makes its way around his home, expression passive before looking at the group again. "Alright, I'm not certain on this ghost business. But once you get inside the keep, you can decide if something needs to be done about it. There'll either be a specter or not, I suppose." It's not quite at the top of his list of concerns. "I'll organize two groups then. One two make noise and distraction at the gate and another to sneak into the tunnels and liberate the building from the inside."
"It sounds like the start of a plan then." Norwood says without adding any comments about dancing or whatever being part of the distraction. Queensguard gets swung over his shoulder and he beings to erase his crude map from the chalkboard. "Will Princess Alis be rejoining us for this?"
Daemon claps his gauntlets together with just a small modicum of giddy delight. "I do so enjoy organization! I appreciate being apart of it as well!" He begins to drum his fingers against his legs, swaying his head to and fro with an unheard tune going along in his head as he watches the Sword and Duke.
"Possibly, we'll see." Cristoph repiles on the subject of Alis, unsure apparently if she's able to committ or not. "If there are no further questions, concerns or suggestions, than I think we can wrap up our little meeting here." His eyebrows lift at Daemon's enthusiasm, it's contagious. At least a little! A twinge of amusement tugs on the corner of his mouth.
Norwood has rolled a critical success!
Norwood checked composure at difficulty 15, rolling 40 higher.
Norwood is immune to any and all head-tune dancing.
Genevieve wishes that Norwood had got rolls like that on the PRP XD
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