(514-09-20) Childhood Friends
Summary: …meet again after a very long time; when a young lady seeks counsel with a young priest of the Roman Christian faith.
Date: September 20th, 514
Related: Lydia/Joachim logs
garannon lydia 

Cathedral of the Blessed Mary - Sarum

One of the few stone buildings in Sarum, aside from Sarum Castle itself, this cathedral is spacious enough to easily fit 50 people seated and perhaps 100 with standing room in the eaves. The large wooden doors face east, with thin but colorful windows lining the outsides. A wooden floor gives echoes to feet that walk upon it, the same wood as the pews and the support beams. The rafters are evident, showing some artisan spent time making them more than functional. The stone has been standing a while and despite the best efforts of the clergy here, there is a little tinge of green near the windows and door, where cool, wet air does seep in from time to time.

Lydia hadn't quite believed it when she'd heard that Garannon had a post in Sarum, much less under the Bishop himself. But soon enough she's going to be embracing the Roman way of worship, and who better to help her than her dearest childhood friend?

She enters the cathedral dressed in sober colors, her head respectfully covered. She'll appeal to the easiest available clergy and ask for Father Garannon, uncertain if he's even going by that name, or even if she's going to recognize the boy in the face of the man she's about to meet.

She will be arriving at the cathedral in that tranquil period of time in between masses, the interior of the building deserted except for a few who have come to sit in one of the pews to the front before the altar, for silent prayer. As soon as Lydia enters she will feel a slight drop in temperature, as the warm rays of a late summer, early autumn sun do not penetrate through the thick walls of the cathedral. The light however does, creating an interesting play of colors on the walls as it is filtered through the stained-glass further up.

It is a coincidence that the priest she approaches for help seems to be rather young, a bit of beard growth there on the lower regions of his face, blue eyes emitting a clarity as he turns to regard the young woman, his hands folded before him. He is taller than Lydia de Horton and clad in the black robe of his profession, a necklace of prayer beads with a wooden cross attached to it he wears about his neck. "Father Garannon?", he echoes, lifting a brow, as his gaze sweeps up from where it was lowered, the tone friendly and helpful. "It seems you've already found him, child. What can I do for you?" It will be now, that his gaze has lifted high enough to meet her eyes. A ghost of recognition sneaking into his demeanour as he tries to place the face that is somehow familiar, and still looks somewhat different.

Lydia's own eyes open wide as she takes in the man's face. There's a searching expression in her own, but at some point in the brief silence she seems to find what she's looking for. "Gara," she resorts to an old childhood corruption of his name, "Do you not recall the girl you knew? Perhaps my lack of wild, dirty hair and grubby knees and elbows are what lacks your memory for movement." Her smile blossoms, and she's just on the tip of telling him, but she's certain he already knows.

An odd thing happens, when his priestly countenance of serene calm shifts momentarily into a broad smile, his eyes locking with hers in a sudden wave of warmth and glee. "Lydia? Is that you? Can it be possible?" His hands unclasp before him as he takes a step towards her - but does not offer a hug or anything of the kind, even if his hands are raised in a gesture of greeting. "You have changed… grown into a proper lady.", Garannon observes, with a bit of incredulous wonder lacing his tone. "But yes. It has been a while." His blue eyes flit down where his right hand fidgets with the cross hanging from his prayer beads, while his smile remains. A smile that dims slowly into a more appropriate, more detached version. "What a surprise… a gift from the Lord above…" A slight twitch at the corner of his mouth. "It seems He has watched over you. You look well. And I am glad for it."

"Proper indeed, but not too proper, I hope. Not lady-like enough to let a man beat me at fox-and-geese or any other game in deference to his gender." Her hands half lift, and then return to her sides. Her grin, however familiar, just can't be schooled away. "God has been kind to you as well, and I am also glad for it. I was inconsolable for weeks after you left, and for a good while after you stopped writing, I'll have you know." Her tone holds no rancor, and if chiding, is meant only in jest. "Do you have time to talk further? As my friend, and also as one of your vocation?"

"Oh…", Garannon drawls, brows twitching upwards at the challenge which manages to bring a slightly amused glint to his eyes, perhaps slightly enhanced by her grin as well. "Tafl battles… I remember them quite well," he admits with a soft exhale. "I /did/ beat you back then, occasionally." A ghost of a wink there, before his features shift into a more composed expression. "Aye, He has blessed me, I am in service of the bishop.", Garannon continues, gesturing to the impressive interior of the cathedral. "Sometimes I can be found here. Or I am travelling all across Salisbury, to visit the various chapels of the manors." His gaze flicks away from her when she mentions the letters, taking the mild chiding there with a faint smile. "I am sorry. But… it seems my studies required my full attention." Which is all he will offer on the subject for now. The young priest meets Lydia's gaze again when she brings forth her request to speak with him. "Of course, I have time, Lydia… I'd be glad to talk of old times." His brows are drawn together, as he considers the last word. "And yes, certainly. If you seek advice and comfort through the Christian faith, I shall be glad to provide it."

"Of course." Lydia doesn't seem inclined to press the matter of their childhood separation. Neither of them could control it. "And you did occasionally beat me." Isn't her concession gracious? "As it happens, I may be in Sarum more frequently. I'm to marry into a Roman Christian family whose manor isn't far from here. I must, of course, embrace the tenets of my husband's faith. I am doubly blessed, I hope, to have you here, that you might help me in this effort." She then adds cheekily, "I might also let you try and beat me at the tafl board and such. Occasionally." Should he wish to rekindle that old friendship.

Garannon looks up, a hint of mirth flashing in his gaze when Lydia acknowledges some past tafl victories of his. He smiles when she states her presence in Sarum may be longer, and the reason, well, it earns her a long glance, his eyes gleaming faintly with surprise and perhaps other sentiments as well. "I am glad for you," the priest of Willcott says then, extending his hand to place it gently on her arm. "And I shall do my best to help you understand what we handle differently in the rites of the Roman church. May I ask, which family you are marrying into?" The question posed in obvious curiosity. As for her cheeky addition, it has his lips quirk in amusement, and he nods, lifting his hands as he agrees to her proposition. "I'd like to see how I fare against you these days. But truth be told, I may have become a little rusty in my tafl endeavours." He shoots Lydia de Horton a glance, tilting his head as he considers. "You are to be wed here, in Sarum, I trust?"

"I would be grateful for your counsel." Lydia offers fervently. "I thought that I might find the bridge between the two churches in my devotion to the Blessed Virgin. Do you think so?" Her tone is momentarily wistful before addressing more mundane things. "Well, now I am here that you may refresh your skills, and be gracious and kind in my victories." Yeah, still showing him some cheek before again addressing marital matters. "I do not know if the wedding will be in Sarum, but if it pleases my husband to be to indulge me, I would have you perform the service. I'm to wed Sir Joachim de Newton. At very least, I'd like you to meet him. I think you'd like him well, Gara." Her expression softens. "Despite time and distance apart, I find instinct urges me to value your good opinion."

His hand finds once again the cross, when she speaks of the faith, Garannon's manner now slipping into the more comfortable routine of the priest he is. "It is less of a gap to bridge, really, and such bridge should be easily found," he states with a smile. "As you have been already raised in the Christian faith. There is a slight difference in some rites. Decidedly more Latin is used, but if I remember correctly, you've been quite interested in reading back then already. You may wish to hear of the wedding ceremony… I'd be glad to teach you the differences, and I believe you'll need to be baptised according to the rites of the Roman church as well, before you are wed." His blue eyes cut to hers and Garannon offers a faint hint of a bow, in slightly mock gratitude to her generous offer. "Oh, and modesty… is a virtue that befits us all. One or two lessons seem to be required, if you ask me.", jest as well as slight rebuke, offered in the tempered manner befitting a man of the church. There is a faint flicker in the young priest's eyes, when Lydia states her inclination to have him perform the ceremony, and he bows his head. "It will be up for Sir Joachim to decide. Newton. A good family of Roman Christian tradition." His gaze flicks away briefly, but then Garannon gives his approval with another nod. "I should like to meet him, Lydia. But you humble me with your trust. I am naught but a childhood friend, after all…"

"You were my best friend." Lydia looks him right in the eyes. "I said it jokingly, but it was no lie, I wept for days after you left. Even though we both knew it would happen, I did not believe it would until you were gone." She hesitates, then adds, "If some small portion of our childhood friendship can be recovered I would thank God greatly. But I should return to the tourney now. Let me speak to Joachim about arranging a meeting that we might schedule a baptism and the ceremony if he consents to indulge me?"

Garannon will not evade her gaze this time, even though there is a slight blink when Lydia makes reference to their friendship. "I know," he replies, his lips twitching into a faint smile, when Lydia will perhaps notice more of the old Garannon in the look he gives her than the priest he has become. "And… no… neither of us expected this. I never got to thank you for your letters, Lydia. They made the time away from home much easier to bear." He smiles. It is a genuine smile coming from the heart. "And yes, I would be glad if we could stay friends. I am looking forward to meet Sir Joachim in person. He seems to be a fine man, judging from your tone and manner when you speak of him." The smile will remain on Garannon's features, when his hands fold before him, and his blue eyes follow his childhood friend with their gaze, as she takes her leave.

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