(514-03-25) The Other Thing
Summary: Bryce de Baverstock needs to clarify and redefine his stand towards his bastard half-sister.
Date: March 25th, 514
Related: Contains references to Springtime Betrothal and We're Imber Trouble.
bryce isolde 

Baverstock Manor - Salisbury

It is a rather late morn at Baverstock Manor, the weather is not the best, as it has rained throughout the past three days. The hall is the place to be, and Bryce de Baverstock sits in a chair before the hearth where a fire is burning, while some other residents of the manor have gathered at the table to share a late meal. The Lord Knight of Baverstock is a man of rather lanky stature, dark short locks framing a rather pensive face of angular features. For now it seems he is staring into the flames, hands folded before him, a mug of ale on a smaller table beside. He wears dark breeches and a tunic of dark-grey color, devoid of any adornments.

A soft and infectious laughter may reach the ears of the Lord Knight of Baverstock. It does belong to the handmaiden of his mother, who soon shows up with another servant in the hall. "Oh, I will definitely draw that once I will have a free moment! You have great ideas, you k-," Her eyes catch the sight of the Lord. The young woman stops and stares at the man for a few seconds. Her friend bows his head and uses the opportunity to sneak out, while Isolde is oblivious of that. He hurries out of the manor.

Isolde wears a red, sleeveless gown which drapes the floor, accented with burnt gold floral patterns. The gown is cinched along the back half of the waist only, tied off behind the back. Beneath the heavy gown is a cream-colored long-sleeved shirt with a frilled cuff. The sleeves are semi-transparent and adorned with embroidered flowers of different types, using vibrant colors. She nips the fabric of her dress and offers a deep curtsy, "M'lord…" She whispers, "I am so sorry for interrupting your peace. My friend here," she gestures toward the place, where her friend should be standing. "and I were just passing by, while…" She turns to look at her friend and her shoulders slump down in disappointment. A light blush colors her cheeks. Nobody is behind her back.

Bryce looks up, attention diverted from his contemplation of the flames, and his features tighten into an expression of recognition, dark eyes narrowing slightly for a moment. Even so, he shifts in his seat into a slightly more upright position. "Isolde." The name uttered in what could be perceived a sigh. "Please…" The next word, brought forth as he gestures for a seat beside him. "Pray join me if you have time to spare." And finally, a tiny twitch at the corner of his lips hints at a smile.

"Oh!" Her eyes widen and a smile curls her lips up, "May I?" She hurries to take the offered seat even without waiting to hear the confirmation. She flops onto the chair and folds hands on her lap. The young redhead fixes her blue eyes on the man, but does not say anything. She may look somewhat excited.

Bryce studies the woman for a moment, observing perhaps her obvious enthusiasm. His own features remain rather still. "How is my mother this morning?", he inquires then, in a voice that is somewhat subdued and polite. Leaning forward, he claims the mug of ale on the table beside and takes a sip from it. "And how are you?" This added after a moment, as if he just recalled she is a blood relation.

"Lady Meredith is in good spirits as usually. Kind people are always gifted with joyful mornings, and your mother is the kindest I have ever known," Isolde answers honestly. She does not lean back in her seat. Instead, she tries to keep her back straight and look more as a lady than just a handmaiden, "I am well too, m'lord, that is kind of you to ask. Is your day well too?" She blinks a few times, still staring into Bryce's eyes, "I…" She pauses as if considering if it's worth mentioning, "I can't wait till the rain will be over. I have some ideas what I would like to draw, but I need to go out for that."

The talk of his mother manages to bring a bit of warmth to Bryce's expression. "Ah. I am glad to hear," he says, perhaps in regards to her remark about Lady Meredith, or perhaps in regards to Isolde's reply about herself as well. "I am well, yes.", the Baverstock Lord replies, meeting her courtesy with a faint smile. "Much better in fact. Even if my ride to Wylye a few days ago was perhaps not so well advised." After all, Bryce had returned less than two weeks prior, barely recovered from a severe injury he sustained on a mission to far-away Tilshead. Isolde's plan for the day is received with a nod. "Drawing…", Bryce drawls, eyeing her pensively. "Not something really, a handmaiden would occupy herself with."

"You were hurt really badly…" Her smile fades and worry overshadows her usually bright features, "I was really worried as your mother. Though, she prayed a lot. I prays. We all did. See, your wound is more better now, right?" She smiles again, but a bit shyly, "We are happy. Yeah. Everybody is, m'lord." She shifts a little bit uncomfortably in her seat now. Likely, feeling as if she said too much. So, she chews on her lip, looking toward the door, which lead outside, but soon her gaze finds the man again, "I know, m'lord. However, lady Meredith likes my talent. Well, she calls it a talent. She helped to improve that, she arranged some of the meetings with talented artists. I am so thankful to her. So, when I see how my works make her smile and amuse her, I just must do it, yes?"

"I was," Bryce concedes, his gaze dropping to the mug of ale in his hand, as he recalls the skirmish where he got almost impaled by a spear. "But… going to Tilshead was necessary. I had to go, to help a friend and serve my liege." His eyes meet Isolde's blue eyes. "I know mother was worried. But I'm fine again now. Even so…" And here he observes her almost panicked glance towards the door, and that faint smile returns, "I'm glad you were here to keep her company." A flicker there in his dark eyes as they stay locked on hers. "And I don't object to you doing as my mother pleases. Just to set that straight." Words that are said with a bit of amusement lacing his tone.

Isolde chuckles, "Yes. Thank you, br-, m'lord." She blinks, "I am sorry. I was just… Well. Your mother is busy right now. So, that is why i am not with her. She didn't need me." The redhead explains without any reasons, "I could draw you one day, if you would like that?" She blinks.

Bryce nods, a brow lifting when he notices her almost address, which causes the smile to fade, at least for a moment. "Maybe," he says to her offer, in a rather vague reply before he puts down the mug of ale, then crossing one leg casually over the other below knee level, steepling his fingers as he assesses her. "Isolde. I should have talked to you as soon as I… took matters over from my uncle Sir Lorcan. I am the head of Baverstock and as such I should clarify where we two stand, shouldn't I?" A glare is given to the few people seated at the long table, and one after the other they get up and leave the hall. This glaring thing a tactic Bryce seems to have already mastered well. When his attention shifts back to Isolde his features have softened once again to a faint smile. But the smile does not reach to his eyes.

Isolde's smile fades and she lowers her look to the ground, "Yes, m'lord," she just says, but shows no wish to add anything. She is just ready to hear Bryce's decision on how he sees Isolde and how he would like to be addressed, likely. She plays a bit nervously with the fabric of her skirt.

Bryce checked his Honest at 16, he rolled 14.

His brows furrow slightly when Bryce perceives the reaction to his words. "Isolde. We have never really spoken much. Not because of you being my mother's handmaiden. It's… the other thing." A vague gesture with one hand there, and a line appears between his brows as his gaze shifts down towards the hands that once again join before him. "My father. I never thought he'd do what he apparently did." The Baverstock lord frowns, eyes flitting up to meet Isolde's gaze. "You are a current reminder of his misdeed.", he says, the tone surprisingly soft. "You are not to blame for this, though. My mother managed to forgive him, and she took you on. I… will try to treat you with more respect. You are a member of this household, and I am responsible for you."

Isolde smiles and appreciation is obvious in her blue eyes, "Thank you, m'lord. Thank you for understanding. I do know how you feel about this and how hard it is for you to face the sins of your father. My mother said, that he was a good and lost man. He regretted what he did. My mother would have never done this too, if she would have known that he has a wife. My mother would have never shown up on your doorstep to disturb a happy life of your family. She grew sick and we did not have any relatives. I know you would have prefered that I would have been given to the orphanage or something, but…" She sighs, "I /am/ sorry. If I would have been older, I wouldn't have allowed my mother to come here. I do understand, how you see me. Though, all I want is to serve this family and make you all happy. Well, just to show that sometimes even the bastards may be valuable and good addition, if you understand, what I mean."

Bryce exhales, a bit of relief showing in his manner when he takes in Isolde's reaction. "I will not go so far as to allow you to call me brother, Isolde. But this is something I needed to address. Your mother came here and brought you with her…" Once again his brows knit ever so slightly. "She was dying, and my mother… who has indeed a good heart couldn't send her away. My father acknowledged you. So… maybe it is time for me to take a more defined position in this. You are not a mere handmaiden, and my mother has seen to it that you've acquired some skills that put you apart from the others. But you aren't a lady either. This is difficult ground to tread. So… yes. Baverstock needs you. My mother needs you. Know this, however. If you have any concerns, you can bring them to me. I am… not your enemy, but the lord of this manor."

Isolde checked its Honest of 10, it rolled 7.

"Of course, m'lord! You didn't have to stress that out. I know my position well," she chuckles, "Sometimes better than other servants. After all, I was taught by your mother. She is just a perfect on being proper lady. I am glad I had a chance to learn from the best. I know that you are the lord and I would never hide anything from you." She nods to give more meaning to her words and then just bites her bottom lip, stopping herself from talking more. Though, there are some glimpses of sadness or disappointment in her eyes. "I do understand your feelings, and that is why I will wait for as long as required. However, I can't stop myself from wishing," she swallows a gulp of stress, likely. It's hard for her to speak out, but she is honest, "… from wishing to have a family. I mean, to be called sister and to be allowed to call you brother. I know, that we barely talk, but I watch, and I hear. You are a good and honest person. Maybe one day you will see me in another light and that day will be the happiest one to me!" She smiles broadly.

Bryce checked his Forgiving at 10, he rolled 2.

Bryce seems faintly amused at her enthusiasm, but he inclines his head when she acknowledges his authority over her. Dark eyes linger on Isolde when she pauses, but when the Baverstock bastard continues he reclines in his seat, fingers steepling before him once again. Bryce will hear his half-sister out as she voices her hopes and wishes. Even if his brows furrow and a line appears between them, and his lips form a thin line as he considers her words. There is definitely sentiment flickering in Bryce de Baverstock's dark gaze when he raises it to meet that of his mother's handmaiden. "I sense the genuine wish there to be accepted," he states, his voice calm and slightly distant. "I… am trying to do what is required, to grant more acceptance to you, Isolde. And I shall," a tiny twitch there at the corner of his mouth, "ponder this, and watch how you carry yourself. God knows if I'll see you in another light one day…" He was already gracing her with more attention now than he had done in the past fifteen years. "But until that time… I shall be your lord and nothing more."

"You give me hope, m'lord. Thank you. I shall submit to your will for now and we will see what future might bring." She smiles broadly and jumps to her feet more cheerfully. Isolde offers a deep curtsy, "I took too much time of yours. I shall go back to see if lady Meredith needs anything. Thank you, m'lord," one more deep curtsy will be alright. And then if allowed, Isolde will leave.

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