Murder Most Foul...
The office is
cheerful, the light reflecting off of whitewashed walls and ceiling.
A pattern mimicking musical notation in colors runs along the tops of the
walls, shelf upon shelf rising from the floor to meet it.
Desks, cabinets and filing drawers are arranged about the room,
workplaces for those whose job it is to keep the harpers and hall in order.
The air is fresh,
tangy with sea and hides and well-seasoned woods.
Watching from a high
shelf are seven firelizards.
You see Staff
Tackboard, Opree, Project Reference Book, Useful Facts for Harpers, Oldeara,
Face Painting Description, Letter Opener, Harper Progress Board, Art Lesson
Plans, Jueann's Medicine, and Benden Spring Wine here.
You notice Poirot
This was a small and
fastidious man, neatly attired, and perfectly coifed. He had even trimmed his
impressive black mustache. Even his tirelessly manicured fingernails show what
might easily be viewed as an unnatural attention to detail, but not anymore.
Someone had crudely slit his throat. By his hand is medicine vial and a empty
glass of Benden Wine.
everywhere, down his a carefully pressed floor length blue robe. Most of his
blood is ruining the desk and the records and papers around him. Blood is slowly
dripping off the desk and onto his sandal.
Poirot wears the knot
of a Harper Master.
He was an older adult
of about 53. He is dead.
Jueann blinks and
says, "Uhh Master Poirot? What
are....." then seeing the blood, pales and almost faints.
"Ohhhh... By.....the...." She turns runs out the door.
Jueann walks out into
Jueann comes out of
the Harper, or rather she staggers out, putting her hand on the door post for
support. She looks ready to faint.
She's very pale and gagging. Her
hand goes to her mouth as she bends over.
Liesana has just
walked in, dusty from the ride down from Smith, but looking cheerfully pleased
with the day, and in fact singing a classical aria.
The song cuts off in mid-note the minute she spots Jueann, though, the
younger master's eyes widening with concern as she drops her bag and rushes over
to offer a steadying arm. "Jueann...?
What's wrong with you? Should
I get a Healer?"
Jueann bends over,
hugging her stomach, but she manages to point to the Office, "In...
there... Get a healer...." She
rushes to .... where is she going? Anywhere
where she can be sick and get some water.
Liesana doesn't move
to either look or summon a Healer, more concerned about Jueann.
"Breath in through your nose, out through your mouth..."
she offers worriedly, trying to guide the Crafthead towards one of the
stone benches. "What is
it?" she asks again.
Jueann takes deep
breathes and nods as she helped, still looking very pale.
"I... I... am fine... The Office.
Go in the office." holding her head, trying not to be sick.
With a worried glance
over her shoulder at Jueann, hoping that she'll follow since Liesana doesn't
feel right about letting the shaky older woman out of her sight, Liesana steps
cautiously towards the door of the office, and lets herself in.
silently into the harper office.
Liesana but stops on at the door, not wanting to go in.
her hand is still over her mouth and she's still very pale.
Liesana gasps at the
sight meeting her eyes, and backs up hurriedly into a wall, fingers in her mouth
and her eyes widened almost impossibly. Trembling,
the young master moves to speak, and then falls silent several times, before
stating in a soft, shaken voice. "I...
don't think a Healer will be of any help to him...
Faranth!" this last
expletive is torn off in a sort of choked voice that would squeak if it had the
control for it.
Jueann hangs onto the
door post, "I... I.... didn't touch anything.... Ohhhh I think I'm going to
be sick." Jueann never come
stand the sight of blood. Ask Evan.
Jellem walks with a
somber look in from the ballroom.
Liesana clings to the
wall a bit longer, before prying herself off of it, and moving towards Poirot's
body. She's about to reach down and
close his eyes when she suddenly stops. "No...
no... we can't touch
him." the legist murmurs,
stepping carefully away from the corpse. "We
can't touch anything. Murder...
evidence... We need to seal the
Jueann is still
looking like she's going to faint, "I... I need to send for a guard and a
healer...." Bumping into Jellem as she goes.
Jellem steps into the
room with a weary look on his face, the look changing as he sees the corpse to
one of surprise, "and here I thought I was being summoned to a reprimand of
some sort.." he mutters half to himself as he looks the scene over slowly.
Jueann runs to the
Main Hall and Ballroom.
In the Harper Office:
Liesana pulls a
notebook from her vest pocket, and, still looking vaguely shell-shocked, begins
to write down a description of the scene at hand, handwriting thready and thin.
manages again, before lifting her gaze to Jellem.
"Did you... hear anything last night?"
Jellem shakes his
head as he reaches for his own notebook, pulling a stylus from the pages within
and beginning to carefully draw the scene in as much detail as he can.
He may not be an artist but he can catch real things pretty well in a
sketch, "I've gotten so used to ignoring those blasted apprentices giggling
all night I kind of ignore a lot of the noise.."
have been giggling..." is
Liesana's inane reply to that. "No,
not at all... But... there doesn't
look like much of a struggle went on. Why?"
The Legal expert's training in matters of murder tends more towards the
courtroom, but even /she/ can surmise that people with slit throats rarely
cooperate with their killers.
carefully at the scene as he sketches, "What was in that medicine vial
there I wonder.." he says, pointing with the end of the stylus to the empty
container beside the glass, not going near anything lest he mess up the
Liesana looks more
closely at the indicated container, and studies its' placement on the desk
carefully, before starting a new line of reporting dedicated to it.
medicine that Master Healer Jaqui gave her..."
the younger harper identifies in a puzzled tone.
Jellem crouches down
as he gazes at the scene, still sketching if the movement of the stylus is any
indication, "What would he be doing with it?" he asks of himself, just
thinking out loud.. "Hmm... what kind of medicine was it? Fellis or
Back in the
Brithia walks slowly
in through an arch from the great hall.
Jueann sighs as she's
starting to recover, seeing Brithia. "Brithia!!
I... thought... ohh did you get my drum message?"
Brithia strides in
and smiles happily when she sees Jueann. "Master Jueann!" she calls
out and turns her steps toward Jueann.
"No. No drum messages. I'm just 'home' for a visit. Is something
"I didn't think I sent drums yet...." She still looks unsteady on her
feet. "I.. I need to get a
Brithia hurries to
put an arm around Jueann, concern on her simple face. "Oh, Jueann,"
she whispers as she looks around for the nearest chair to propel the harper
toward. "You don't look very well. Where does it hurt?"
Jueann shakes her
head and points to the Office, "I... I'm fine.... In there...
Poi...Poirot.. he's been..." she makes a gagging sound.
Brithia nods as she
sits Jueann down and strokes her back. "I've been warned already to stay
away from him. Is he that
upsetting?" She glances at her old friend and confidant, at the door and to
Jueann. "Do I need to go give him a piece of my mind?" she asks, well
meaning. She really doesn't have many pieces of her mind left to give away.
"You are studying to be a guard....?
Then you need to go in... there...."
Brithia continues to
stroke Jueann's back, more concerned for her than that nasty Poirot she's heard
about, then smiles dryly. "Did you give him the dressing down I've heard he
deserves?" she looks at Jueann with admiration. "I'm not able to
arrest people, yet, you know."
Jueann shakes her
head, "Just go in there. Liesana
is there!" she says forcefully. "Just
Brithia has always
respected Jueann, and maybe been even a bit afraid of her, so the tone of voice
pushes her to do as she's told. Nodding, Brithia turns and heads to the office
with several glances over her shoulder to Jueann as she goes.
Brithia walks slowly
into the harper office.
Back in the Harper
Brithia walks slowly
in from the ballroom.
Brithia stands in the
doorway, knocking on the jam as she arrives. "Master Juea...." she
starts to explain then stops to just stare at the mess on the desk.
sure," Liesana admits, writing down the way that Poirot is lying, the
patterns of the pooled blood... anything and everything that might be useful to
those with more knowledge in the practicalities of investigation.
Her face is still ghostly pale, and her eyes wide, but the legist knows
her duty and her training. "It
was... something toxic. But if it
was poisoning, why cut his throat...? Guardswoman!
Thank goodness... "
Brithia stiffens and
swallows, swallows repeatedly. "No.." her voice is barely a whisper.
"Not me." Her head shakes slowly back and forth.
Jellem adds some
details on the sketch, which looks perfect when compared to the actual scene, as
perfect as a black and white drawing can be.
"Well... if it was fellis it would make sense to me... pour it into
his drink... he drinks it.. falls asleep.. didn't kill him.. but that would
explain why we see no signs of a struggle.."
Liesana shakes her
head. "But who'd want to kill
him?" she wonders. "He was
on his way back to Fort Hall already... In
disgrace... It doesn't make
/sense/." she states, stepping
back away from the body very gingerly indeed and surveying the room for things
she missed recording on her first pass. Brithia's
reaction causes a flicker of doubt to cross the master harper's face.
"You're wearing a guard's knot...
Brithia's head stops
shaking but she still swallows. "Um," is her first advice. "We
need to um," she is thinking as fast as she can. She knows this. She's
heard the words. "Don't touch anything. Call the healer and harper. Make
sure no one comes in. Talk to witnesses." She looks at Liesana then Jellem
"Do you know who did it? I mean.. he /is/.. you know.. dead?"
Jellem glances at
Liesana, "I'm sure we could make a list as long as the two of us standing
together of people who he had angered... the man had enemies the way most people
Siallon walks in from
Brithia is standing
just inside the doorway now and looks very relieved to see another guard. Thank
Faranth. "Sergeant!" she stiffens to attention.
The imposing figure
of Sgt. Siallon fills the door as he looks in on the seen, his eyes taking in
one detail after the other before turning to the rooms occupants.
"What exactly is going on here?" asks the guard.
As if he couldn't guess but there are things that have to be asked.
replies Liesana with a patience stretched thin enough to suggest that it's
either stay calm or lose it completely "We /are/ Harpers.
The Healer Hall has been alerted... Siallon!"
Ah, a Guard she recognizes. "There's
been a murder." Master of the
obvious, as well as of the Harper Hall, it seems.
comfortably in from the ballroom.
Jellem finishes his
sketches of the scene for the records. "I'll
go see if I can find Falada to get someone more artistically trained to draw up
the room as it is.." he nods to all and heads out of the room
Jellem walks with a
somber look out into the ballroom.
the corpse as he looks slowly around, "Recruit.. you have something to take
notes with?" he asks as he approaches the desk, being careful not to
disturb anything that might be evidence for the moment.
"You're the Master of the obvious Liesana... I thought it was a
party going on.." the guard says, trying to make light at least for a
moment. Way too much tension in the
room to be productive.
Brithia is too new to
all this and considering her rather sheltered existence isn't taking any of it
very well, but tries to persevere. "Yessir." she says in a voice not
sounding confident at all. She reaches into the pouch at her side and removes
it's Law..." replies Liesana in that slightly-shaky decidedly-brittle tone
she's been using since walking in and seeing her first-ever freshly killed
Yes, I get it now. Jellem and
I have been recording the scene so far... if
I can be of any use to you..."
Jayt enter the room
in a bit of a huff, long legs carrying him a step farther then he would have
liked. He grimaces and steps back nose recoiling at the smell of blood.
"What happened here?" He asks hands fidgeting slightly as he surveys
the scene. The usual rowdy apprentice turns serious at the sight of a body. This
looks way beyond him at the least. Mentally wishing a Journeyman or Master had
been available to help with this he shifts nervously on his feet, waiting for an
all too obvious answer.
Siallon has seen many
corpses so he's not in the shell shocked mode that many of the others seem to be
in, "Ok... Recruit write down these observations..
Let's see... subject is sitting at the desk in the harper office...
throat has been cut, though it doesn't look like it was done in one swift
motion.. probably didn't get it through the first time so had to try again...
Blood is still wet so it had to be have been in the last few hours at some
point.." he pauses to glance at the apprentice, "Empty wine glass with
a medicine vial beside it..."
Brithia writes the
words and can, thankfully, not hear what Siallon is saying. When he pauses she
reads what she has written, the remaining blood drains from her face. Steady on,
she tells herself. Guard business. Deed's done.
"What does it
/look/ like happened here?" inquires
Liesana of Jayt in clipped tones, before the Harper schools herself to get a
grip on her emotional responses, and add in information to that which the
Sergeant has dictated. "The
medicine vial belongs to Master Jueann... And
she just discovered the body not an hour ago, I think."
scribble comes from Brithia's direction.
Siallon glances at
Liesana, "Not an hour ago..." he says thoughtfully, stroking his chin
as his gaze goes over the scene, "I'm not familiar with this particular
Harper... do you know any reasons why someone might want to do this to
Brithia shifts on her
feet. She's heard rumors and innuendo since she arrived, but no one's asked. She
has learned well and just takes her notes. Scribble scribble.
Jayt blinks slowly
absorbing the information. Trying to avoid the sight of the body he looks away
turning to the others in the room. "A medicine bottle?" He asks rather
surprised, not that it's important or anything, just that it's something he
might be able to help them on. After all if there's one thing apprentices know
it's their herbs and medicines. Him being not the most well behaved apprentice
in the hall, reaches for the bottle with out asking.
Liesana watches Jayt
turn away from the body and grimaces slightly.
Isn't he supposed to be... examining it, or something.
"Yes... your Master Jaqui prescribed it to Master Jueann, or so Jue
told me... It's something toxic, I
forget what." the Harper
provides, before sighing at Siallon, and leaning weakly against a wall.
"Why? Take your pick?
Master Poirot came from the Fort Hall on a mission to dig up dirt.
He was scheming to take control of the hall here, and there were some
nasty reports given to me about some of his actions towards the apprentice
girls, particularly the pretty ones. He
also imposed on the Journeywomen too, and offered me the Crafthead's position if
I went along with him... /Any/ of us
would have motive. But Jueann
ordered him to leave in an argument just the other day... he was on his way
"Move that bottle laddie and your Masters and I will be having
words..." he says, his voice calm and even but there is a coldness to his
words. A nameless Harper journeyman
comes in, "Jellem said you needed an artist for so.." he stops and
gapes at the dead Master at the desk. "Yes.."
states Siallon, looking to the journeyman, "I want a complete thorough
sketch of this room from each side... every detail complete... fast as you can
so we can get him out of here.. here.. use this.." Siallon adds and hands a
notebook and stylus to the journeyman, who begins doing as he's told.
Siallon's gaze turns back to Liesana as he thinks, "can you get me
some of the names for people that you know he had angered.."
Brithia writes as
fast as she can. "Master Jueann wouldn't hurt a trundlebug, Sgt.,
Sir," she defends her friend. "She was very upset when I found
her." She realizes she's been here a long time and looks out the door to
make sure her friend is alright.
Jayt groans at the
crowd and gives a wry grin at Siallon withdrawing his hand. "Oh believe me
anymore talk to the masters about me and-" he makes a face, it just
wouldn't be pretty. "Ok look..." He stutters out at the crowd,
"I'm just an apprentice here, I'm not qualified to technically exam on a
body, for that we need to get a journeyman at least." He gulps, under his
cool visage he's actually grossed out over the the thought of examining such a
thing. "I can if you want, get one of my masters to come help you with
Liesana shakes her
head. "Can't I just say that he
didn't have a single ally in the Hall?"
the young Master of Law asks, a touch rhetorically, before squaring her
shoulders, looking away from the mortal coil of Poirot, and starting in.
"In order of rank, the Lady Natch didn't care too much for him... he
was attacking Jueann, who is one of her best friends.
Master Jueann, obviously. Me,
as I'm loyal to her and the apprentices that are my responsibility.
Although..." she notes.
"I can assure you I didn't kill him.
Hmm. Journeywomen Reeba, Mimi
and Falada that I know of. Apprentices
Kirsyn, Niara, Christatha..." She
continues onwards, listing approximately half of the Hall's female apprentice
population. "Tutor Jellem, if
he knew that Poirot had hit on his wife. Journeyman
Rook is from Fort. Leyte, the Head
Siallon gives a few
moments thought, "Go find one.. quickly there lad... time is of the
essence.." he looks at the journeyman's sketches, nodding to himself.
One done. The journeyman
moves to the other side of the room and begins sketching in the tight confines
of that side behind the desk, trying not to miss anything.
"One second there... can you take a guess at what's in that vial
without moving it yet, Apprentice?" he asks of Jayt
some more, long list of names she hopes
she's spelled right. "Sergeant," she asks bravely. "I had left
Master Jueann out there," she nods to the door, "And she didn't look
at all well. Should someone find her?"
quietly, looking a little bit better but still very pale.
"How... how is it going....?
Jayt nods and
attempts to rush out of the room before Siallon's next question, hearing it
however he screeches to a halt, slightly of balance. "The vial?" He
glances at it noting the label. Musing over it he runs his hand through his
messy brown hair. "Looks like aconite to me..." He tells them
cautiously, "I could be wrong of course, but you said Jaqui issued it? He'd
know for sure." Hmm he rubs his chin puzzled "Aconite is for the
heart? That's fair tricky, too much can be poisonous." He nods politely and
scampers out of the room.
Liesana, now that
she's answered the question put to her, falls silent and studiously examines her
own notebook and observations of the scene.
And then, that done, examines her hands, the walls, the bookcases, and
anything other than Poirot.
Brithia's eyes take
in Jueann with concern, Siallon be blasted if he doesn't like her talking to her
friend. "Jueann, are you all right?" she steps in her direction.
"You still don't look well."
"So to add into
the mix we have an empty bottle of poison sitting next to the corpse with a slit
throat... and no signs of struggle.." Siallon says absently as he strokes
his chin. He ignores the others for
a moment as he thinks, mulling over various facts in his mind.."
Jueann makes a face
as she moves into the room, avoiding looking at the desk, "I... I never
could stand the sight of blood. Evan...
never mind..." Hearing Siallon, "I... I don't believe we met. I'm...
Craftmaster Jueann and poison? What...
what are all you doing in here?"
herself to answer Jueann, still looking anywhere but the body.
"Jueann... I'm glad
you're looking a little more stable. Sergeant
Siallon and Recruit Brithia are investigating.
Journeyman Enpeasee is taking sketches, and the Healer's been and gone to
get a ranking one..." She runs
down to a stop, and fidgets slightly.
A rather plump healer
journeyman rushes into the room franticly trying to keep up with Jayt. He stops,
catching his breath for a second before he glances up aiming his pudgy face
around the room. "Alright! What's going on here?!" He demands through
sharp gasps for air "This young hooligan," he jerks his finger towards
Jayt who tries his best to look completely innocent, "Dragged me out from
my quarters insisting-" He stops suddenly for the first time noticing the
body in the room. "Shards! Why wasn't I informed of this earlier!"
Brithia steps out of
the way and attempts to stay there, but near the door.
Siallon stands and
looks back at Jueann, "I'm Sgt. Siallon of the Guards, ma'am.. it's my job
to find out the reasons for things such as this.." the Guard clearly
Jueann sighs, turning
her back to the body, "I.. I see...." Then she's pushed out of the way
by the healer. "Is.. there...
anything you want from me? When...
can he be moved? I .... Need my
go send a drum message to Fort..." Liesana
states after a moment. "Secret-level
code, so it's either you, me, or Kurt, Jueann.
But we'd better inform Oriana straightaway."
And... out slips Liesana to do just that, after a "If you've
anything further for me, Sergeant Siallon, I'll be around Ista for the rest of
the day, most likely. Sergeant
Dashvard knows my usual haunts."
Siallon glances at
the just arrived Healer, "As soon as the examination is done.." he
says, glancing at the Healer. the
journeyman harper hands the notebook back to siallon, the sketches completed.
silently out into the ballroom.
Brithia finds the
odor hanging in the air to be oppressive and nauseating but she tries to hold
her own, swallowin repeatedly. Her white face becomes more sallow but she
remains standing, her notes becoming a little less neat.
The journeyman bends
down for a closer look carefully eyeing the body first before he touches
anything. Slowly and carefully he feels around the neck wound. "This was
done recently...I'd say 2 or 3 hours" he informs the group of people
gathered. "Looks like a rather dull knife was used to slit the
neck..." He indicates grimly to the two separate
slices on the neck and frowns. "You boy!" He points to the
apprentice who at the present is hiding the best he can in the corner. "No
don't cringe! You've most certainly worked with blood before, your a healer
after all, what were you saying about the aconite?" He shakes his head
puzzling as he continues to check the body "No other bruises as I see
Jueann just no longer
can stand the smell, the tension or whatever, "If you'll excuse me? I'll be
in my rooms if you need me." She
turns and flees the scene.
Jueann walks out into
"Recruit... go outside and guard the door.. no one comes in till they
finish and I'll send two other recruits to remove the body... I'll be back
with Jayt but is glad she gets to go. "Yessir," she says almost too
gladly as she dives out the door.
Siallon goes home.
Brithia walks slowly out into the ballroom.
And Jueann goes to...
Hall / Meeting Chambers
Arched stone dissipates into the shadows above in massive room, light filtering in from slanted windows above during day while a plethora of glows light the room at night. Centered in the middle stands a huge table of oak, chairs arranged along the sides with no regard for rank other than a slightly cozier pair of cushions on two at each end. The sides of the hall are pocketed with various doorways to staff's private rooms while at far end of hall, architecture rounds out to form a nook filled with light, a sun-bleached banner of peachy orange and cream white centered in view.
Gliding around is a gold firelizard.
Yatyl is here.
Main Hallway Headwoman's Office Lord Warder's Office Steward's Office
Jueann shakingly walks up the stairs. Very pale still from the shock, she stops, grabbing the railing. "Ohh, Yatyl. Is Andron around?"
Yatyl is settled in a chair somewhat near his office door but looks as if he's been sitting there for a while. Hides are spread all over the table as the steward tries to get a head start on a new assignment given to him by the Lord Warder. He sighs a little as he shuffles the work around, only looking up at the sound of Jueann's voice. "No.. He's away right now. Out of the hold on business." He trails off a little and stands immediately. "Jueann! Are you alright? You look horrid. Sit down.. Sit down!" He comes over immediately, pulling out a chair for Jueann to sit in.
Jueann plops into the offered chair, "I ... I'm fine... any brandy around?..." she shakes her head. "I... I really need to speak to Andron. Have to tell him..." She sighs again. "I... oh dear..." she trails off.
Yatyl wanders over to a cabinet in the hall quickly and quietly, and starts to pull out a small glass tumbler and a glass bottle of brandy. He returns to Jueann's side and pours her a glass, handing it over with steady fingers. "Jue.. Dear. don't speak right now. Just drink this, take a deep breath and relax a little. I can send for Andron. It will take time though. He's probably most the way to Gar now." He sighs a little and pulls out a seat next to her and waits up her silently.
Jueann takes the glass and takes a long drink. "You've got to bring him back! I need him. Someone has killed Poirot." She blurs out. Taking another long drink of the brandy trying to forget the image. "Blood everywhere."
Yatyl holds the bottle of brandy at ready as Jueann begins to drink heavily. "Slow down a little there, dear. What was that again? Someone's killed Master Poirot?" He takes a moment to just let the information sink in. Jueann's reaction makes Yatyl think that its just happened and nothing's been done yet. He's cautious to assume that. "I guess the healers have been sent for and the guards notified. I will get Andron here as soon as possible, but even if I send both firelizard and myself to retrieve him from Gar, it will take time. You need to relax." He takes a moment to wander to the hall to call a drudge.
Jueann drinks more of the brandy and nods. "There's already a guard posted in front of MY office and the healers have been sent. Nothing's been touched." She sighs, "I... I found him... Blood everywhere. His throat... ohh... his throat...."
Yatyl sighs a little, waiting by the door for the drudge to peek his head in. "Get me a healer. As quickly as possible." The steward was just plain worried about Jueann's mental health right now. She seemed on the verge of hysterics. Not that anyone could blame her. He leaves the door mostly open and returns to Jueann's side, kneeling beside her. "Shhh.. Jueann, shh.. All will be taken care of." He reaches over and pours Jueann a little more brandy before letting his gaze return to the harper. "What would you want me to do?"
Jueann blinks and looks at Yatyl, "I... oh dear..." She sips her brandy. "It's a.. harper matter.... Liesana has sent out drum messages.... Jaqui gave me something for my nerves and the vial is locked in the office.... It's... empty.... I just can't stand the sight of blood. And there was blood everywhere."
Yatyl nods a little and meets eyes with Jueann. "It is a harper matter, but I will not have a murder running around my hold." Yatyl's mind spins for a moment as he debates the next course of action he must take. Andron must be sent for immediately. He doubts a hold wide quarantine will work. "I'll have guards stand by at the gates. We'll record every man, woman, child and beast that comes or goes." He sighs a little and falls back into a chair. "That should help your investigation slightly." He settles himself into a chair and thinks on that for a while. "And I've sent for a healer. They'll work to get your prescription filled with out you having to go back there."
Jueann sighs and shudders, "Please... please.... I don't want to be much trouble.... although... I've dropped trouble in your lap...." She sips her brandy. "This will do...."
Yatyl shakes his head a little and warms to the woman's trouble. He reaches out to pat her hand. "My dear lady, with all the trouble currently in your lap, it is nothing for a simple soul like myself to catch some of excess that falls off your lap and take care of it for you." He sighs a little and chews on his lip. "would you like to rest a bit, perhaps on my couch?" He wrinkles his nose and ponders a little more in the silent moments. "Or I can send for the harpers to take you back to the hall."
Jueann shakes her head. "I... I better get back.... Everything is .... oh dear.... " Standing, handing him back the glass. "Send word when Andron gets back... please?"
Yatyl nods a little and stands with her. "Let me escort you back?" He presses his lips together and sighs a bit. "Come.. Take my arm. I'll take you where ever you need to go." he extends his elbow to the lady Harper and stands at ready. "Don't refuse me lady, I don't know if my ego could take it."
Jueann nods, deciding that she isn't able to make it to her room. "I... thank you... I ... would like that....."
Yatyl smiles and nods a little as she takes his arm and starts through the hall. "Here we go. watch your step." The steward opens the door to the main hallway and steps through.
Jueann is led in by Yatyl.
Jueann leans against Yatyl. The brandy is making her flushed and even more unsteady.
Yatyl nods a little and smiles, nudging against her side a little to get her to rest more against him. The stairs are taken very slowly, Yatyl's path leading Jue towards the railing a bit, so she can hold on both sides and not fall. "Just take it one step at a time. All will be well."
Yatyl walks in from the Main Hallway.
Jueann is led in by Yatyl.
Jueann takes one step at a time, leaning heavily on Yatyl and nods. She sighs. "All that blood....."
Yatyl shakes his head a little. "I know this was a horrible situation, but try not to think on it too much. I'll lend you my best drudges when your investigation is done, to clean everything up as good as new." he smiles a little, but there is definite worry behind his eyes.
Main Hall and Ballroom
Jueann nods... "All that blood....It'll take forever to get it out..." She sighs, looking very weary and very drunk now.
Yatyl sighs a little as he leads the master harper back into her hall. Yes. He is the one responsible for getting her drunk, but the woman was already useless as it was, muttering on and on about blood, so Yatyl thought it might be wise to make her numb as well. He sighs a little and pats her hand. "My sister will even take care of it for you. She can clean faster than anyone I know. Just let me know when you want it done. I'll send them on. Just relax now, Jue. Just relax."
Jueann shakes her head, "No ... no... that's alright... the guard said to leave everything as is.... But... but...." She sighs and sinks out of Yatyl's arms into heap at his feet.
Liesana emerges from the Archives at the sounds of a drunken Jueann and a concerned Yatyl, the younger Master still drawn and pale, but in firm command of herself. She is a legist, and this is a legal matter after all. "Yatyl!" she calls over. "What's happened to Jueann...?"
Yatyl kneels down as she sinks down and keeps an arm around the harper's shoulders for the time being. "Its going to be ok, Jueann. Its going to be ok. Just rest for a while. All will be taken care of soon." He sighs and scans the room for another harper or guard or anyone to help him with Jueann. The best would be a closer friend that she could get better comfort from. He sighs a little, looking up at Liesana. "Nothing's happened. The day is just wearing on her pretty hard. She's had some brandy and will likely sleep soon. Hopefully. Should I carry her for you? We can put her to bed."
Jueann is passed out or fainted, take your pick. The day has taken its toll on her nerves and strength.
Liesana reaches into an inner pocket of her vest, and produces the keyring that most Masters possess, granting them access to the rooms of the Hall. "That... would be good. I'll get her door." she replies, moving out of the shadows and over to the Steward and the Crafthead.
Yatyl slips his arms under Jueann's knees and wraps an arm around her back to gently catch her under her arms. Its not exactly a graceful motion to stand up, but the steward does manage some bits of ease to the motion on account of his strength. The poor woman is hefted into his arms as he stands up straight and follows Liesana to the master's room. "Sorry if you need her for anything right now. I feared for her health and decided to give her a bit of something to help relax her." If Jue was any more relaxed right now, she'd ooze out of the steward's arms.
Jueann sighs deeply as her head rests on his chest, limp as a rag doll.
Liesana shakes her head. "We need her... but we need her healthy and sane more," she says simply, preceding Yatyl up the grand staircase with a step much heavier than usual. "I'll hold the fort while she rests... There really isn't much more to be done that /can/ be done."
Liesana steps silently up the curving staircase to the balcony hallway.
Yatyl walks up the curving staircase from the ballroom below.
Jueann is carried in by Yatyl.
Liesana steps silently to the Harper Lounge.
Yatyl nods a little and smiles. "Oh. and while you hold down the fort, just be sure to know that you have the hold's full cooperation during your entire investigation. The hold guards are yours to command, but leave me a few." He smiles sweetly and continues to carry Jue as if she weighed nothing. "I suggested keeping a few at the gate to take down names of all comers and goers." He nods a little before letting his voice drop a little. "Have you heard word from my sister?"
Yatyl walks in from the Balcony Hallway.
Jueann is carried in by Yatyl.
"I'll certainly avail myself of their services. My talent lies in analyzing information, and gathering testimony. Gathering the physical evidence is a little out of my league," admits Liesana to Yatyl quietly as they pass from the balcony into the Harper Lounge. "And, last I heard, your sister is doing all right... I was going to go and collect her from the Weyr today, but now... I think I might just ask that the watchrider give her a lift... It wouldn't look good for me to leave the area,"
Yatyl raises an eyebrow. "Well. I suppose that might teach you to keep your anger in check." he grins a little. He doesn't believe the master has done anything wrong, so feels free to joke. "Threatening a man's life will only lead to trouble later." He sighs a little, the humor of the joke dying in the somberness of the moment. "Should you wish to get a drink when you have someone to hold down the fort for you, get whatever you wish from the mug. I'll take care of whatever tab you run up."
"Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it?" quips Liesana to Yatyl dryly, fiddling around with the keys on the ring to find the skeleton key that will fit Jueann's door. "I'm thinking, if this case continues to have so many possible suspects as it does now, I might run up a significant tab... Ah, there we go. Right in through here, and we'll get her to her bed..."
Liesana leaves for the Jueann's Room.
You enter a
comfortable but richly paneled room with a faded braided rug on the floor.
Tucked in one corner is a Jueann's desk, piled with scrolls and writing
instruments. A table with three
chairs are pushed against another wall with a vase of dried wildflowers sets
prettily on it.
over-stuffed couch piled pillows and stuffed toys rest opposite the table.
Tacked on the walls are different but colorful displays of children
artwork. It is a spring
You see Jueann's
Gold Mark and Harper Lesson Plans here.
Liesana is here.
Yatyl has arrived.
Jueann is carried in by Yatyl.
Yatyl wrinkles his nose as he ducks into the room. "Shards, Liesana, if that can be my only contribution to this whole affair, run up a tab large enough to make the vintners nervous." He smiles a little and eyes the other door in Jueann's room. "Through there?" He gestures lightly with his head.
Liesana chuckles quietly. "I'll see what I can do. But I'm also borrowing your Hold Guard, remember... And possibly your jail cell eventually." She gives a nod to his query, and opens the door to keep Yatyl from having to bump it open with a shoulder and possibly wake Jueann. "I'll just wait out here."
Yatyl walks in from the Jueann's Suite.
Jueann is carried in by Yatyl.
Yatyl walks to the Living Room.
Yatyl wrinkles his nose. "My generosity doesn't extend to the whole of the guards, Liesana. And they can far out drink you for the most part," he coughs a little and grins. "So while you may buy Dashvard a few rounds, not that I could stop you from doing that, let the other guards know that they are to spend their own marks or credits." He smiles and bows. "and if you have any other need of the hold, don't hesitate to call Andron or myself. We are at your beckon call." He stands up straight. "And... don't go easy on Lon. She needs strictness above anything."
Liesana laughs and head back towards the door. "I mean their investigative services, Yatyl... For which I need them all stone sober, or as near as possible," she notes. "But if I need help, or even a place to hide if I turn over one too many rocks and something comes back to bite me, I'll let you know. As for Lonie... I'll see how it goes. I find she often is harder on herself than anyone else could ever be." And so, she retreats to the lounge.
Liesana and Yatyl step silently to the Harper Lounge.
Meanwhile, outside the Harper Office...
Brithia stands outside the door to the Harper Office with a stiff, official air. "Hello," she says to Zenethen. "I didn't expect to see you here."
Zenethen quietly wanders though halls of the Istany hold, quietly looking at things as he strolls around. A voice behind him catches him by slight surprise and he looks up. "Oh, hi.. I was just wandering.."
Brithia crosses her arms over her chest and doesn't look terribly menacing. "If you aren't here to help, I'd suggest you pass on by. Sgt. Siallon might not like too many people loitering around.
Zenethen leans against the wall near her and quirks an eyebrow. "Help? What are we watching?" he looks around, nothing too terribly obvious, except for the office..
Brithia's nose scrunches up, still making her face look cute even at her age. "Someone /killed/ one of the Harper Masters. I was looking for a friend just after they found him. I was conscripted," her nose scrunches up again and she swallows. "It wasn't pretty."
Zenethen pushes himself away from the wall and gazes in the room, not noticing anything outright blatant. "Really?? Why didn't I hear anything about it? Do you know who did it?" he asks, a worried expression on his face, but he doesn't seem to be too horrified, merely amazed.
Brithia gets between Zenethen and the room, making him look around her. The body is still drapped over the desk behind her, the gash in the man's neck very obvious and the heavy aroma of drying blood in the air. "Geez," she puts her arms out. "You know you can't go in there. They still think there are clues to what happened." Her pale eyes bore into Zenethen.
Zenethen stands up straight, stepping back slightly, only to get some distance between her. "I /wasn't/ going in." he states. And at the scene inside the room, he merely cringes slightly. "Eugh.. that's vile!" he turns away and pulls his cloak over his shoulders. "I Don't think I'll be joining you... I'm only here for a short visit anyways." his body shudders again from chills as he walks a few paces further from the room. "I've seen too much blood in my lifetime already."
Brithia oh's with sympathy. "I didn't know that.. and I was here to visit a friend, myself. I like that Tealc let us go for a while... Zen," she drops her official tone, "They think my friend did the deed, and I know she couldn't have. Do you think you could do me a favor? Just listen while you're here? Tell me if you hear anything?"
Siallon walks in.
Brithia is talking to Zenethen, standing in the doorway to the ..da dummm.. murder scene.
Zenethen reaches up and rubs his fingers though his hair. "Um... I guess, though I'm not very good at investigating anything but broken clocks and that sort of things.." he glances up at the person who walked in, nodding his head, half in greeting, and half in indication to Brithia that someone else is here.
Brithia mouths 'thanks' to Zenethen and looks in Siallon's direction, trying to look official again. "Sir," she says as she stiffens to attention again. "I was just discussing the case with Recruit Zenethen, sir."
Siallon walks into the room, his left hand on the hilt of his sword, steadying the blade from swinging too much as he walks. "At ease, Recruit.." the sergeant says as he looks around, "What did the Healer find, anything unexpected?"
Brithia reports "I haven't heard, sir."
Zenethen notes Brithia's immediate attention and assumes a bit more alert stance himself, thoughnot entirely a textbook pose. As the two converse, he walks back to the wall and leans against it, pulling his cloak off his shulders to hang down his back, out of view for the most part.
Siallon nods to Brithia. Helpful fount of knowledge that she is, "And you are?" he asks, turning his gaze upon Zenethen. He's got a corpse to find explanations for so he's not really in any mood to be nice.
Zenethen nods in response "Names Zeneten.. I'm at Tillek, sent by Gar, though I haven't been in training very long yet."
Brithia nods as Zenethen speaks, confirming his words. "We are training there together, Sir," she adds. "Home for a short stay."
Siallon arches an eyebrow at Zenethen, "And what do you think of the goings on here?"
Zenethen merely shrugs. "I just found out about it barely a candle mark ago… Strange I must say…" he replies, though there isn't much emotional attachment in his voice and it seems to not really worry him.
Brithia steps away from the door, more a confused, concerned holder than a guard. "Have you heard if Master Jueann is alright, sir?"
Siallon nods, Zenethen going up a slight notch on Siallon's estimation of the recruit, "I've not heard anything since I left.. I've been trying to check around the more violent types in the hold... seeing if any of them had heard anything.."
Brithia considers silently then asks
"Why would any of them come
here. I mean, the man had nothing here, did he? He was from
Zenethen quietly listens, keeping out of a conversation that he has no information to add, though he's collecting all that he can incase it be required later on. "Were there any grudges being held lately?"
Siallon shakes his head, "Didnt' sound like anything had been noted as missing as of yet.. though none of the late Master's personal affects were in the room with him.." he looks to Zenethen, "The Harper drudges are the same ones, I've been told, as have been here for quite a while. If one comes up missing we'll have our culprit but I don't think that will happen anytime soon. Liesana told me that this Master Poirot or whatever his fardling name was had gained just about every person in the Istan Harper hall as an enemy, certainly no allies to speak of, harassing many of the female harpers."
Brithia nods as Siallon speaks, confirming his words, too. "Even Holder Natch was named as disliking him. Though she'd not have done something like that herself."
Zenethen whistles slightly with raised brows and leans against the wall again. "He finally pushed someone to the edge it seems.." he glances back towards the room. "No one showed any signs of unstable emotions? Something to show they were at a breaking point?" he asks, checking some common signs in most relationship problems he's dealt with in the past.
Siallon smiles at Brithia, "I've known Natch to dislike many people, but never without more than just cause.."
Brithia shuffles her dainty feet. "Holder Natch wouldn't do such a thing herself, anyway. Sir, have you found someone to relieve me, yet?"
Siallon chuckles slightly, "I'll stay for now.. I've scheduled some others to be here later.."
Brithia swallows. "Should I make myself available to you while I'm here, or am I allowed to continue my visits?" She's not sure of her status at all anymore. This was definitely not what she expected.
Siallon arches an eyebrow but doesn't question, "I relieve you of this post for now, Brithia... go where you will though depending on how this investigation goes you may have other guard shifts.."
Brithia takes a deep breath, regrets it when the fetid air fills her lungs, and coughs. "As you wish, Sir," she coughs and sputters. "I think I'll find the Flying Mug and then the baths. She turns to go and then turns back. "Sir, Master Jueann is a friend of mine. Am I allowed to spend some time with her?"
Siallon arches an eyebrow, "As of yet I have no suspects so why would I disallow you from seeing your friend?"
Brithia gradually shrinks into herself before she answers. "I'm not sure. It's just that.. she was one of the people whose name was mentioned. I'd like to visit Aunt Natch, too."
Siallon nods, "Then go ahead.. plenty of other guard recruits about.."
Brithia looks up at Siallon with a grateful smile. "Thank you, Siallon," she drops his title and turns to go, skirts flurrying behind her as she leaves as quickly as she can without losing her dignity.
© Design Copyright S. Minkus & L. Ledger, 2003
© Content Copyright the Members of the Harper's Tale Harpercraft, 1999-present
© Pern and the concept of the Harpercraft is the property of Ms. Anne McCaffrey, who kindly allows us to play in her world. Thank you!