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A Harper's Life

 

Events in the Harperhall

 

Meet the Harpers

 

In the Vaults

Master Tony Returns to Ista

Fifty-sixth day of winter, forty-first Turn of the Tenth Pass

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Shainman Rehearsal Hall 

The largest room in the Istan Harper Hall, save the Ballroom, this room has wonderful acoustics that make sound bounce off the walls just so. From lessons to rehearsal to just listening to the marvelous sounds that fill the room, there's always a surplus of people about: harpers of every rank, and even a few holders. Tiers fill almost every wall in the room. The choir levels are on the right, with a deep curtained-off space beneath that serves as a repository for chairs and other nameless items. The orchestra benches are directly in front, with smaller areas for group rehearsal on the left. The back wall, containing the entrance, is decorated with a large 'mural' illustrating a well-known ballad. The room is spotlessly clean and only completely empty in the early hours of the morning when most harpers have to tear themselves away from their work for a few winks of sleep.

Ylisa watches with considerable relief as the junior wind band pack up their instruments and leave, and takes her time doing likewise - the packing up bit, anyway. Their chattering departure leaves the Rehearsal Hall empty and quiet. Rather than leaving, she sits on a bench and sorts out her music, putting sheets in order and making a neat pile.

Tony makes a foot scrapping noise to attract some attention, and then pushes the door open to stick his head into the room. Tony enters the room.

Ylisa looks up, attracted from the noise. Seeing an unfamiliar head peering round the door, she leaves her hides on the bench, stands up, and starts to walk across the hall towards the newcomer. "Good evening! Can I help you?"

Tony says, "Good evening. My name is Tony and I am just returning to the hall, after being posted away for many turns. I heard the music and it reminded me of memories of long ago, this is certainly one of the best accoustic room in all of pern, and you did have those little wind bags, playing some lovely tunes"

There is a slight noise, Majori appears. Just like that. One moment there was no one around the choir stands and then there was Majori. Majic? She looks around to see if anyone sees her.

Ylisa's eyes drop automatically to the stranger's shoulder. The master's knot reassures her of his place in the scheme of things, and she smiles. "Thank you. They were doing rather well today, I thought, though I've probably exhausted them! Welcome back, anyway. My name is Ylisa. Have you only just got here?"

Tony starts to walk into the room and sees a man enter the room, he immediatly goes dizzie and falls down, luckly onto a near by chair. Tony struggles to catch his breath and with an expression of non belief stares directly into the eyes of the man.
Tony says, "It surely can't be."
Tony says, "Surely you must be the son of Fasulkad."

Majori moves closer to the door only to be stopped by the entrance of another apprentice. Rats! Busted! now how to get out of here?

Tony attention is drawn to the young female apprentice and draws a giggle smile on his face. Tony draws himself up and asks the apprentice "Hello there, and who might you be?"

Well, that's one for the records. All Fas had to do was walk in to make someone tumble over. Blue eyes tilt slightly to look back back at the man who addresses him, and after a slight flicker of, perhaps, recognition, he offers a light smile at the man's words, his own escaping him at his second decision for several moments. He does, after a moment, manage a light bow, offering, "Ahh, if indeed that were so, I would have to be his grandchild -- I share his name, and I've not yet met a person who names their child the same as themselves..." Interesting way of avoiding the question, though.

Tony turns to Fas and says "Hmm, well I knew your grand sire, is he still around?

Straightening her shoulders, Majori walks over to the master and Ylisa. "Hello. I am Majori." She offers her hand. "A pleasure, I'm sure." she also drops into a curtsy. Looking from the master to Fas, "How did you...." she looks confused.

Ylisa steps forward in concern. "Are you all right? Can I get you some water, or something?" Majori's presence apparently doesn't strike her as odd, and she doesn't wait for an answer to her question. "Majori, will you see if you can get a glass of water for Master Tony?" 

Tony says, "No, its ok I am fine." Tony eyes twinkle at the lovely face before him, so "it is very nice to meet you Majori," so as he takes her by the hand over to a seat and sits her down, inviting the others in the room to join them,Tony staggers to the chair and sits down to catch his breath.

"Ahh -- last I heard, he had some activities up in High Reaches, however, we don't have much contact," Fas admits with a slightly disappointed look, shrugging lightly as he heads deeper into the Rehearsal Hall, since everyone else seems to be looking to leave it. "It would seem there was a bit of a loss of contact with him over the intervening years..." That's one way of putting it. Glance shifts to look up at Ylisa, and Fas gives a light nod as greeting while she attends to the Master.

Tony says, "so snr journey woman ylisa, what shall i call you and agin i must complement you on your musical skills, the tones were just heavenly"

Majori peers at the master, "Yes, Ylisa. I can get him something to drink. Do you want something too?" Polite? She sits prim and proper beside the master. "It won't be any trouble." She projects sweet and innocent, doesn't she?

Tony says to Fas, " I remember your grand sire was very good at making up tunes, and also used to always catch the ladies eyes.

Ylisa smiles at Majori with a little shake of the head. "No, thank you." She responds to Tony's compliment with, "Thank you. That last piece was one I wrote specially for them, so I'm glad you like it." With a chuckle, she adds, "I wish /they'd/ been as pleased with it!" 

Tony says, "I remember at one gathering he dances and kissed 4 different girls, and i believe 2 of them were sisters too."

Majori listens carefully to the master. "Fas has always been a bit odd. Master Jueann treats him like an equal." She says sagely from what she has gathered from other apprentices. Are you from Fort, Master?"

Tony turns to Ylisa, "Have they performed it yet, I can imagine than when they do in front of a big crowd, the dynamic interactions that the music will cause between listen and player, shall form a bonded dance, musically between ear and note." 
Tony says, "Then they will get excited from it"

"Ahh -- well, I should say I definately lack his improvisation skills, and I'm not so sure about how often the ladies spy me," Fas replies, following Tony's comments only a short step behind. Eyebrows raise in reference to the sisters comment in obvious surprise. He's no recollection of it, and as a supposed child of this same-named person, he shouldn't, so his surprise is really no surprise at all. "Oh really? Well, seems I've quite a reputation to live up to, then, don't I?" My, how the years have changed the perceptions of him... Gaze moves, almost absently, to look back at Majori, and he offers a light smile towards her after a light chuckle. "Well, /I/ don't think I'm too odd..."

Ylisa nods politely to the Master. "Yes, performance always seems to help a group to gel." She chuckles at Fasulkad, "Odd or not, if you're thinking of imitating him with the girls, you'd better get that journeyman project underway!"

Tony turns to Majori "No child, I was at Valley hold, which is just about as east as you can get, about 9 days ride from Brendan. Tony says, "Perhaps i could be mistaken, perhaps it was Fletcher or Charm who kissed the sisters. Perhaps I am just so tried from the journey." Tony notices such lack of sound comming from Majori, and wonders why any harper hall apprentice would ever be so quiet

Majori is listening to the master, hanging on his every word. Strange for her. "I've met Lord Fletcher. He's a big meanie, you know."

Head tilts slightly back towards Ylisa, as Fas lets out a light chuckle as he nods. "No worries on either account, I don't think. I'm not that popular with the girls, and I've got something in mind already." Grin remains aimed towards the Journey for a moment more, before it turns to look back towards Tony as Fas gives a light nod. "Perhaps. I really don't know /who/ it was, sir... Sounds like it was a little before my time..." Well, his current time, anyway.

Ylisa raises an eyebrow sharply at Majori's comment, and murmurs, "Respect, Majori?" in an aside to the apprentice, before asking more curiously, "How did you come to meet him?"

Tony says, "Fletcher, ops I mean Lord Fletcher a meanie? Well he was poor at darts, I remember what Master Jueann used to do to him"

Majori blinks, "What did she used to do to him? And how did you find out? By spying?"

A simple, quiet smile remains on Fas' face as he looks back and forth between those conversing. He himself isn't supposed to know Lord Fletcher -- nor a whole host of others, so he keeps his peace. That is, until Majori replies to Tony's comments, making the Senior Apprentice turn around to hide a laugh beneith the pretext of a cough, though grin doesn't fade very quickly as he turns to face the others again, and in particular, Ylisa, with an expression that just seethes, 'See? I didn't even do anything, this time!'

Tony says, "I used to play darts with Master Jueann, i think i actually taught her how in the flying Mug, and believe me, i dont htink she ever really lost a match. And Lord Fletcher was a champion player, so if you can imagine two queen dragons at mating time, eyeing each other off for a fight over the best brozne on pern, thats what they were like."

Ylisa shoots a warning frown at Majori after her remark, but can't help grinning at the image that Tony conjures up. "Well, that must have led to some interesting contests." Then with a curious tilt of the head, she repeats her question to Majori. "So how /did/ you come to meet Lord Fletcher? Lemos is a long way from Tillek."

Majori blinks and starts thinking fast, "Ohhh He came to a gathering once. he's still a meanie." She waves the question off with a wave of her hand. "Master Jueann played darts? She seems so sedate and fuddy-duddy."

Ylisa twitches an eyebrow in a practised expression of cool disapproval. "You might give some attention to how you speak about those who outrank you, dear. And if you think Master Jueann's a fuddy-duddy, you also need to polish your powers of observation." With a sudden grin, she quotes sententiously, "A Harper should learn to analyse the behaviour of those around him, and may acquire useful information by applying this skill."

Tony says, "Hmm, perhaps there is a reason why she is that way now."

Majori sighs. She is used to speaking her mind and she's used to not having rank bother her. "Why should I polish my powers of observation? Would that make me a good spy?"

Tony says, "Ylisa yes you are right."
Tony says, "Majori, I have been a spy for the hall at some times, indeed, I once taught it, but in the end, every one is a spy for the hall, every piece of information helps us keep pern safe and secure for the generations that are to follow."
Tony says, "we have tried to protect so much, yet lost so much in many ways, we must always be seakers of fact and truth"

Another quiet chuckle passes from Fas, and he shrugs lightly at Majori, following up Ylisa's advice with, "You never know what kind of secrets run through a Harper's mind, so never judge them so simply. Of course, that can be said about every kind of Crafter and non-Crafter..." Words trail off, and Fas' grin deepens at her next questions. "Powers of observations help in every instance of being a Harper. Judging a crowd during a performance, two sides of a disagreement... There's no aspect of being a Harper that /doesn't/ require being as observant as possible..."

Majori blinks, ohhh......... "You were a spy? Really and truly? Can I be a spy? Pleeessseeee?" She begs, going cute and sugary all over again.

Tony says, "Majori every one is a spy. The real gift of spying, is putting it all together, of which your fuddy duddy master as you think of her, is one of the best minds ever at this, that is why Master Jueann is a great tactician and darts player"
Tony notices Jueann enter the room and stands and bows to her.

If Ylisa is startled that Tony speaks so freely, it shows in only a faint widening of the eyes, and she nods approvingly at Fasulkad's remark. She just shakes her head slightly at Majori's request, and quotes again, " 'What a Harper hears is for the Harper's ears,' as they say." Then she smiles at Jueann. 

Jueann quietly slips in to check the latest rehearsals but instead she finds people sitting around an older master. "Hello? I hope I'm not interupting anything?"

"But... but... I want to be a spy... I want..." Majori stops when she sees the craftmaster enter. Uh oh. Time to duck out of the way. She scoots away from the master that she is sitting by. "I... I got to go... I have a class... Right... Class..." She stands, curtsies and makes a hasty retreat.

Initially, Fas doesn't seem to notice Jueann's entrance, but as everyone else turns to welcome her, he too takes a step to one side, and gives her a quiet nod. "Master Jueann," he greets, remaining quiet on all other matters of spying and spy-related things. His own advice disclosed, he has little more to add for the time being.

Tony grabs a hand full of Majori's long brown full skirt and stops the girl mid track.
Tony says, "Now Majori - if you really wanted to be a spy like you say, you cant just up and run at anything, you need to stay cool headed at all times"

Ylisa sighs as Majori leaves, and murmurs, "Someone's going to have to have a word with that girl." She greets Jueann with a smile and, "Hello, Master Jueann. We have a visi-" She stops in astonishment as she sees what the visitor is doing.

Tony says, "In fact an apprentice should never up and run so fast, should they Master Jueann ?"

"HEY! LET GO!" Majori shouts, grabbing at her skirt to pull it away. "I said, I have a class! And I can't be late!"

Tony turns to marjoi "i promise i will let go if you will stand still for just a few minutes longer, as a Master, I am sure I can vouch for you being a little late.

Jueann raises an eyebrow, "Well, I suggest letting the apprentice go first. Then we can talk." She is ignoring the apprentice for a moment until she shouts. "Ahem. There is no need for shouting. "
Tony lets go of the apprentice skirt.

Ylisa frowns. She seems to be doing that a lot. Still, she tries to smooth things over by the usual courtesies. "Master Jueann, you remember Master Tony? He's just arrived."

Tony says, "Hello again Master Jueann, I hope your darts arm is still in good form ?"

Jueann hmms and peers closer at the master, adjusting her glasses. "T.T.Tony? That you? Darts? I haven't played darts in ages." She peers closer, "It's been ages." 

While the higher-ups seem to be making nice among each other, Fas takes the opportunity to slide his way over towards Majori, and lower his voice to offer advice in a quiet aside. "Calmly, quietly, is always more effective than loudly, and frantically. Unless, of course, you're looking to draw attention to yourself..." Voice drops down another notch, pulling into an all-out whisper. "If you're looking to be a spy, that would be a very important thing to learn, I would presume..."

Majori grabs her skirt. She needs to get away as fast as she can. Fas is given a look and nods. "I got to go."

Tony says, "Jueann , the most famous darts play of many turns, even what you did to Lord Fletcher. And you dont play darts any more ? what a sad time turns have turned"

Tony says, "Yes Jueann, it is me, I have just moved back into the hall, it seems that you need a master of writing and the Master Harper thought sending be back to my starting hall was a good idea."

Jueann blinks, "How come I wasn't notified? How is Oriana these days?" Confused and befuddled, she comes and sit down by Tony. "It is good to see you again."

"Allow me," Fas adds as a final part of his whisper towards Majori, before he turns back towards the group with a light smile, and offers, "The Apprentices will take their leave, then. We'll just let you all catch up on old times..." And with that, Senior Apprentice offers a polite nod towards the trio as a whole, before he turns, and motions Majori forward as he moves to step up next to her. "Let's go. The Masters obviously have some catching up to do..."

Ylisa appears mildly relieved as she observes Fasulkad escorting Majori out of the way, and listens with interest as Tony reveals his plans. For now, she just lets the masters speak. 

Majori flashes Fas a grateful smile and nods, "Yes please." She studies him for a moment. He is very good looking.... hmmm.... 

Tony hands Jueann a letter from Oriana.
Tony settles down.

No restraint placed upon either of them as Fas prepares their exit, without a second glance, Fas starts off to leave, offering Majori only the slightest glance in return, but apparently only to ensure that she's moving with him, and that he didn't leave her behind. "Told you," he murmurs before they reach the door. "Just be calm about it..."

Fasulkad walks to the Main Hall.

Majori walks to the Main Hall.

Tony says, "Oriana sent me here on the quiet, and I have been traveling for some time"
Tony says, "There are a few reasons she said,and she is looking well. One reason is that you needed some one who could help out with some lessons, and hall admin, if requred"

Jueann reads the note and sighs. "Well, it's good to have you. I'm a little short staffed lately." She smiles, "Well, she's still a good friend. So what am I going to do with you? Hmmm?" She does notice the apprentices leave and sighs again. That Majori there is something about that child.

Tony says, "Another reason was there have been some disturbing rebellious type murmurings, and Oriana is worried that people have forgotton about the times of FAX, and that even with Thread, people are getting power hungry again"

Like the apprentices, Ylisa is starting to feel more than a little superfluous to this conversation. She hovers expectantly for a few seconds, then takes a breath and gets a word in as soon as she can. "Well, if you don't need me, Master Jueann, I'll clear up my things and go for dinner."

Jueann sighs and nods. "I see." Smiling up at Ylisa, "As you wish Ylisa. I hope to see you later."

"Of course. Good to meet you, Master Tony." With a smile, Ylisa leaves the Masters to what clearly ought to be a private conversation, and goes to collect her music. Tucking the sheaf of hides under her arm, she picks up her pipes and heads for the door.

Tony says, "She thought that perhaps you might need ( other ) skills as well at some times."

Jueann grins, "Great! You know it wasn't until I made master and took over the craft here that I found out your other talents. Maybe you can be of use after all. But that can wait until you get settled. Would you like to come up to my rooms for a drink and a walk down memory lane?"

Tony says, "Sure, I am a little tried, but I am happy to have a short chat."

Jueann smiles, "maybe I can dig out an old dart board some where?" she teases.

Tony laughs.

Jueann standing, she smiles, "Come along. I think I have a bottle of good Gar Cider that I know you'll enjoy."

Meanwhile...

Main Hall and Ballroom 

The ballroom's vast space is simply and tastefully decorated, combining images and materials from many parts of Pern. Opposite the main entrance, a broad balcony is supported by pillars of the finest northern marble; polished to glassy smoothness, they contrast the toning blues of the walls. A staircase of the same stone rises in sturdy flights to the upper level. The high vaulted ceiling with its round wrought-iron window is white, brightening the room, while the varnished floor is the deep red-brown of a Lemos hardwood. High on the west wall, a large 'mural' shows a map of Pern, framed by images of harper life and symbols of the Craft, while the bright 'tapestry' opposite offers an informal scene. Glowbaskets rest on marble stands of different heights, turned to give both direct and reflected light, while carved stone benches along the walls provide places to sit for those attending functions, or simply wishing to rest. For everyday use, rush matting protects the most frequented parts of the polished floor.

Fasulkad walks in from the Shainman Rehearsal Hall.
Majori walks in from the Shainman Rehearsal Hall.

Ever-so-quietly, Fas closes the door behind them as they leave the Shainman, and lets out a quiet sigh as he does so, turning to look at Majori for a few moments as hands lift, and take rest behind his head, linked together. "So... Why did you need to leave as soon as Jueann showed up, anyway...?" A little direct, but direct isn't always bad.

Majori makes eyes at Fas. "Thank you for your help." She shrugs and with a wave of her hand, "Ohh... I don't want her to know I was skipping class. I don't want to do punishment detail. You know?"

Ylisa sweeps past the apprentices, glancing curiously in their direction but not pausing in her path toward the stairs.

Light shrug accompanies the chuckle that passes from Fas. "Makes sense, then. Thought it might have something to do with you knowing Fletcher." Feet begin to move, and Fas only offers Ylisa a passing return glance, before he continues back in his way towards the Hold. "I'm gonna' go get something to drink. Enjoy not having punishment detail," he offers over his shoulder with a grin. "For future reference, though, the best way not to get caught is to either not do anything wrong, or to stay away from the place you're doing something wrong in..."

Majori smiles and nods. "Wait! You aren't leaving me are you? I mean.... " she pauses for a moment. She can't let this hunk get away. "Maybe you can give me pointers? You are very smart."

Another quiet chuckle passes from Fas, but he does pause as he looks back over his shoulder at her, and shrugs lightly as grins. "I'm not very smart -- I just think quickly. I wouldn't know what to give you pointers about, really... But if you really want to be a spy, I'd guess my only advice on everything I've ever heard about it is that you want to keep a low profile. Your chances are best if you already have that, I'd guess, because they wouldn't have to teach you as much, so you'd be a likely candidate. So..." He shrugs again, and starts heading towards the Hold again, "I guess I don't have too much to offer you until you get what I told you before down pat, first... But like I said... I'm thirsty, so I'm going to go grab something to drink..."

Majori smiles, "Can I come along?"
...

Logfile from Ylisa.

 

 

 

 

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