Mellia — In Nochet I
1627, Sea Season
Late in Sea Season. [[[s02:session-40|Session 40]]]
Mellia arrives in Nochet. Mellia did go talk to the priestess of Uleria without him. Also, Yamia probably should not travel.
Venlar has been left behind, for Orlanth has to arrive. Yamia has travelled, but only to the Cinder Fox clan, as far as Mellia knows.
No matter who is with her, Mellia goes to the House . Mellia settles in, then checks the preparations. Mellia wants Dormal invited.
Mellia will also explain to the head wedding planner that she thinks the old gang has other plans.
There are dozens of women who want a bit of her time, and plenty of men as well, and then there is a note from her mother; Kirse bids her welcome and hopes she can come to a meal to say hello.1Dormal: “Report”
GM: This is, certainly, one possible way of interpreting things.
Mellia will certainly come eat with her mother. Mellia will try not to spread herself too thin.
“Mellia, my dear,” is Kirse’s greeting to her. “Come in. Just the two of us.” Of course, she does not mean she is dismissing the servants, but who would? Today she is all in green and gold, including lips, cheeks, and formal dress. The green has mica and gold in it. “Sit, and tell me about what you have been doing.”
Mellia sits down. “Mother, you look splendid! I have been giving heroic deeds a rest. Handing out wedding invitations was difficult enough.”
“I have been engaged at the Temple for much of the morning.” Kirse smiles, compressed. “How was Sartar?”
“It’s in trouble. The harvest was poor. Refugees are coming in from Tarsh. Kallyr had better do something quick.”
“All over?” Kirse looks troubled. “Ernalda forfend.”
“Everywhere I went, the harvest was poor. Greyrocks may not exist this time next year. Blue Tree will be eating turnips.”
“Then should we postpone the second part of the wedding?” Kirse looks worried, probably for Mellia but possibly for the house.
Mellia considers that. “I think the wedding can proceed, if Sartar and New Tarsh aren’t at war.”
Food is put down – dozens of light delicacies and even an iced drink. Kirse takes a moment to let the servants out of earshot. “We would of course have to recompense the Blue Tree if there were not a war, and yet we held back. But one wedding is enough, if the harvests are grim.”
Mellia seems disappointed. “You are right, Mother. I want everything done and over with, but there’s no guarantee that this harvest will be better.”
Kirse looks down sadly at the table, and picks at a few folded baked tartes, and a chilled jelly. “We would be hosting your new husband, and we will have to make all well for him, at least.”
Mellia has a good appetite. “His father did better than Blue Tree. They will be coming, except for Yamia, who should stop traveling.”
That seems to pass Kirse by – she looks briefly puzzled. “I would be more inclined to release my daughter to the Cinder Foxes, than to see her starve.”
Mellia reassures her, “I won’t starve. However, if you owe Blue Tree anything, pay in food.”
“There are gifts, of course, but now may be a good time to let them recover.” It is a funny way of pronouncing ‘renegotiate from a position of power’ but Kirse manages it nevertheless.
Mellia nods and eats. “Help with a large house in Blue Tree would be good. Venlar insists on his servants.”
“He understands that you should be attended to. His health seemed to be improving when he was here, so perhaps he will need fewer mouths and can employ more strong backs instead.” Kirse looks thoughtful.
“By the grace of the Mighty Mother, it’s so.”
“He should find the majority of his servants in the clan he will join,” Kirse decides. “But that is for later. I suppose you are not yet blessed by Ernalda, or you would mention it.”
Mellia says, “I am not, but Yamia is.”
Kirse blinks. “Yamia? She seemed so… Humakti, while here.” Her tone asks if Mellia is sure.
“I am certain. Yamia is refusing to name the father until after the wedding.”
Kirse briefly stops with her hand on her cup. “How pregnant is she?”
Mellia replies, “Due about the end of Earth Season.”
“Nochet is certainly a bustling and cosmopolitan city,” Kirse says thoughtfully. “But why… who? That she would not want it known until her brother is safely married.”
“That has troubled me as well.”
“I would know – I am sure I would know – if it were a Saiciae. But still, I shall ask Aranda.” Only Kirse would call Grandmother by her name. “She showed no sign, gave no hint, while she was here.” Kirse is obviously running over lists of possibilities in her head now.
“She certainly did not. There were a lot of parties, with a lot of wine .”
Kirse nods slowly, but seemed unconvinced. “I thought when her father left that I was getting less trouble, but the trouble simply became smaller and less boisterous. I would not put it past her to have pretended to such a thing, only you would not be deceived… Still, I think it most likely she wishes to make something of this, and now she has caused you to make me think it is a large matter. She is … a sad loss to an Ernaldan Temple.”
Mellia agrees, “Yamia would have been a splendid priestess. She takes after her uncle, who’s a major politician.”
“It would have been easier if she took after her father, a minor chieftain.” Kirse then pauses to consider. “It may have been her who slowed negotiations, now I think about it. I had thought he was the one. But still…” She makes the most of some buttered asparagus, just coming to the end of its season, and therefore outrageously expensive.
Mellia snaps up her buttered asparagus. “But still, the business is strange. I understand better why the cousins probably won’t be here.”
“They should be. What is holding them up, that they cannot come?” Kirse narrows her eyes, elegant and cool under green lids.
Mellia sighs. “Kallyr, I suppose. They’re going to Tarsh, to stop Mirava’s wedding.”
Kirse blinks, just once. “You should go talk to your Grandmother.” She even stands up to go see if Grandmother is free, sending a servant for that.
“Yes, Mother.” Mellia gets up.
“We will wait for her call. In the mean time, tell me what you know.” Kirse gestures the other servants out of the room, into her private chamber.
“Very little, Mother. I am guessing that Mirava is to marry the Lunar puppet. I saw Unstey crowned. He seemed a decent man. So it must be the other one.”
Kirse is suddenly not interested in food. “You must try to remember everything you can, everything that Varanis said or did, about this. Grandmother will want to know.” And now Aranda is ‘Grandmother’, when she was not while it was Mellia’s marriage under discussion. Kirse is worried.
“Yes, Mother. Varanis said little of substance. There’s nothing like Kallyr to get Varanis to clam up.”
“Kallyr sent her to deal with this?” Kirse asks carefully.
“Varanis carefully didn’t say so, but why else such haste?”
For that, Kirse does not give an answer. “Tell nobody of this. Bring up other gossip instead.”
Mellia, newly back in Nochet, reports to mother
- 1Dormal: “Report”
GM: This is, certainly, one possible way of interpreting things.