A Call to Arms

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 we built our own house, Harras | 2 Crone
ELAENA TARGARYEN
 direct link • Aug 09 2017, 02:43 pm
Quote
High Princess of Westeros
The Fair Dragon
The Seven Kingdoms
ESSOS
18 years
Athena • she/her • 27 posts
Offline


Much of the Targaryen Princess's time had been spent in the library of the Red Temple, reading what scrolls and tomes and books she could about Volantis and R'hollor. She was curious but she also needed to know more about the land she had found herself in as well as the people. She had to make alliances in this land and she had to take back her home. While Daena had her dragon for such a feat, Elaena had her brains and her books and that was her strongest weapon. She had to learn what she could because it was her only weapon. She was not strong like her twin but she was smart.

Everyone needed some breaks from reading though. And Elaena wished to take her knowledge and see it in action. She wanted to see the people of Volantis and how the acted. She also felt her eyes growing dry from all the reading and thought her eyes could take some break from the words scrawled on parchment. She did not wish to go to where she was living with her twin and her betrothed though, still feeling the slight distance that had grown between herself and Daena, though she also felt that distance might be slowly closing given the discovery of their mother's death. She still didn't feel like going to her temporary home though and she did plan to return to the tomes once she felt her eyes had been given an appropriate rest.

And so the Fair Dragon sat on the steps leading into the Red Temple, violet eyes followed the people who walked the square in front of her. There were slaves with their faces tattooed by the Masters and traders and Volantene all the same. It was interesting to watch people go about their daily lives and in truth Elaena had to wonder why slavery seemed so popular in the Free Cities when it was not in Westeros. Then again, there could be an argument that it just went by separate names in Westeros and perhaps a High Princess was not the one to pass judgement on that.

She lifted her face to the sun, letting the heat and humidity sink into her pores as she closed her violet eyes for a moment, the scarf she had had over head slipping from the top to reveal the silver locks beneath. She let out a small sigh to herself before opening her eyes once more, her gaze going to a little boy who seemed to be performing some acrobatic tricks to try and earn coin. Elaena felt a small smile come to her lips as she stood up, descending the rest of the way down the steps and closer to the boy, where she placed some coin in a receptacle he had set out, taking a step back to further enjoy the tricks he performed, the small smile still on her lips as she watched the boy.

HARRAS HARLAW
 direct link • Aug 13 2017, 05:47 am
Quote
HAND OF THE QUEEN
THE KNIGHT
SWORN TO ASHA GREYJOY
THE IRON ISLANDS
28 years
CASTOR • HE/HIM • 21 posts
Offline


Unlike Braavos, Harras had always found Volantis to always be a much more welcome sight to behold: the great Black Walls that encircled the eastern half of the port-city, and the great bridge that joined it to the western shore. Harras Stood tall at the bow of his ship as it passed under the great bridge as a chorus of merchants, wagons and cityfolk buzzed above him. When he closed his eyes it almost reminded him of rolling in to Lannisport for the first time on his father’s, on that warm summer morning when he was but a child. He had been so frightened back then, but now he stood as captain of that very ship as he sailed it merrily in to foreign lands once more.

Also, unlike in Braavos, Harras had no reservations about flying the white scythe of his house upon the sails. Pirates weren’t so sought out for their crimes in this city, as any Ironborn worth his salt would be carrying plunder aplenty, and for all their talk of paying ‘the iron price’ Volantis provided ample distractions for a lonely sailor that murder couldn’t quite buy. That, and the crew of The Gallows were infamous enough that nobody in Volantis found it worth the risk to fuck with them. They didn’t have an Iron Bank to protect them, and money often talked as loud as a blade in the knight’s experience.

”We’re staying a week, Lads!” Were the first words out of Harras’ mouth as he skipped from the bow and on to the pier before the ship was even done docking; tying the moors as the old wood groaned to a stop. The declaration was, as Harras hoped, met with much cheer. Volantis held many fond memories for the crew, and for Harras especially. With the ship safely in the harbour, Harras swiftly made his retreat. ”I’ve got some business to take care of, try not to kill each other when I’m gone?”

For this mission, Harras travelled without his usual muscle. He already knew Volantis confidently enough that he was happy to walk around alone, but beyond that his best men simply weren’t very nice to look at. Whilst in Braavos he had been to meet with a king he felt it necessary to project at least some measure of power. With the king’s younger sister, however? Well, showing up with two men armed to the teeth was perhaps not the best way to endear himself to her.

He wandered the streets towards the great temple of the Lord of Light; an odious religion in Harras’ mind, but he’d be damned not to admit they built impressive shit. Thrice the size of the great sept in king’s landing it wasn’t exactly hard to miss, and if Jon was to be believed it was where Elaena Targaryen had made her home. He marched his way to the temple with purpose: still dressed in his reaver’s mail and smelling of salt and sweat. If he wasn’t so confident in his handsome face and winning smile he might have taken the time to clean up, but Harras was as impatient as always and all too eager to meet his would-be betrothed.

It took almost a good two hours for Harras to finally find the girl. For a long while he had wondered if the Targaryen boy had sent him on a fool’s errand and was now sat back on his ship in Braavos laughing up a storm. Thankfully, thoughts of returning to Jon and introducing his face to the reaver’s fist were long gone by the time he laid eyes upon the princess: those telltale violet eyes and silver locks barely hidden beneath the scarf on her head. If the pirate allowed himself a moment of indulgence he would have described her at a glance as, quite simply, everything he had secretly hoped for and more.

His pace was brisk as Harras walked towards her: Nightfall’s ornate hilt on full display but his hands clasped behind his back. He dared not approach her from behind, lest his looming shadow and poor dress spook her in to running away. Instead he would let her see him approach, think what she will as he did his best not to appear like the marauding pirate that he truly was. He tried to meet his eyes with her own moments before he spoke. It was at this point Harras realised he had been chewing the inside of his cheek since he saw her: the entire alliance rested on this meeting.

”My Lady,” Shit, was it supposed to be ‘your grace’? Harras took a sharp breath, face still as ice and eyes just as blue. ”From your brother.” He brought one arm out from behind his back and, discreetly, produced a small letter sealed with the three-headed dragon of her house. He had no doubt Jon must have sent a raven in advance, but Elaena was not her brother: it might have taken more than a fancy sword to prove the Ironborn’s identity.
ELAENA TARGARYEN
 direct link • Aug 13 2017, 08:58 am
Quote
High Princess of Westeros
The Fair Dragon
The Seven Kingdoms
ESSOS
18 years
Athena • she/her • 27 posts
Offline


Elaena did not stray far from the Red Temple. She was without escort for the moment and she knew the danger that was inherent in that if someone were to recognize her as a Targaryen Princess. She thought she was close enough that if something did happen one of the Fiery Hands could protect her, but she supposed one could never really know how safe they were. There was a certain peace that came with accepting the danger you were in though, one where you did not worry quite so much about the danger but instead started to try and enjoy the little parts of life once more. There was no point in surviving without living.

Elaena kept a close eye on the people around her but her attention mostly stayed on the boy doing acrobatics for the crowd, enjoying his talents and the small distraction he was providing her. She did notice a man closing in and she noticed his pale skin, made him for a Westerosi. She did not think much on it though, there were plenty of foreigners in Volantis that it was not so strange of an occurrence. He only became more of something to pay attention to as he seemed to approach her, and she felt all of her defenses coming up, ready to try and protect herself if this man wished her harm.

Her violet eyes regarded him for a long moment. He was dirty but he seemed to have good armor and weaponry. She had a suspicion he was not any simple sailor, not with the armor and weapon he had on his belt, but she wasn’t sure whether or not that should make her more afraid of him. He addressed her as his lady and for a moment she wondered if he even knew she was the High Princess of Westeros, or was it former Princess now considering the brute’s takeover? She was glad for it though, she did not need anyone who might be listening to hear a more formal title than lady.

The man produced a letter though, claiming it was from Jon and she felt her heart swell for a moment, excitement at any word from her brother. Communication had been very limited between herself and Jon and Dany. It was best to keep communication little, to reduce the chance of interception. He did tell her that a man would be coming with a more detailed letter. She supposed, for some reason, Jon had chosen this man to bring her a letter. She did not know why Jon would trust him, but she supposed maybe he would indicate the reason in his letter.

She took the letter from him, nodding a small thank you before letting her slender finger touch over the three-headed dragon for a moment, a very welcome sight from home. She broke the seal, opening the letter, wondering if maybe she should have been more patient, but knowing she wanted the words from her brother too badly to wait. Violet eyes read over the ink on the parchment, taking in what her brother had to say to her. She felt her brow furrow at the words, at the mention of an alliance with the Ironborn, and the mention of sealing with alliance with her own marriage to a Harras Harlaw, the man who stood in front of her.

She felt confusion sinking in but she forced herself to finish reading the letter before responding. Jon had promised her he would not force her into marriage without her agreeing to it, but this alliance was what she had truly always suspected. She would marry for political reasons, and it seemed this was more true than ever. She had never expected an Ironborn, of course, but if they were who she needed in order to get her family back on the Iron Throne, she supposed she had no choice.

Violet eyes lifted from the letter to the man in front of her. “So you are to be my husband, then? Jon will not marry me against my will and I must say I never expected him to try and marry me to an Ironborn. Such strange times where he would have me marry a pirate…or, sorry, I suppose that is presumptuous,” she said with a small shrug, too many thoughts going through her mind to fully process all of them at that moment. She was to marry a pirate, a barbarian as far as she was concerned, but it would help her family. “I suppose I have no choice but to accept, at least if I wish for your support. And if Jon thinks it best then we will be wed,” Elaena said with a decisive nod as she looked back to the man who would be her husband. He was dirty, probably from his travels, but he at least had a handsome face and he seemed well built. There were surely worse choices for husbands.

“I apologize. I have many thoughts and questions, as I am sure you must as well, but you must also be tired from your travels. We can go find a place inside to sit and possibly have some wine,” she said with a small smile. She supposed it might be best to start getting to know him if she was to marry him. Or maybe find a reason why she would refuse to marry him, if there was such a reason to be found.
HARRAS HARLAW
 direct link • Aug 15 2017, 03:25 pm
Quote
HAND OF THE QUEEN
THE KNIGHT
SWORN TO ASHA GREYJOY
THE IRON ISLANDS
28 years
CASTOR • HE/HIM • 21 posts
Offline


Harras was happy to wait in silence as the woman before him read Jon’s letter. His hands were still clasped behind his back, and as the quietness between them drew longer and longer he started to become all the more conscious of where he was looking. Harras was, to some shame, not as vulgar as his other Iron Islanders. He had never raped, nor taken a salt wife, or even visited a brothel without a belly full of hard-won wine. Life as his uncle’s squire had neutered him in that respect, too bashful to so much as look at a girl let alone lay a hand on her.

Which was why his gaze stayed transfixed on the ever so fascinating patch of dirt just to the couple’s left, where a terrific abundance of nothing was taking place before his very eyes. He only met her violet eyes once more when she finally spoke and, to his utter relief, accepted his proposal. Harras would have smiled, but the enormity of the situation finally weighed on his shoulders the moment Elaena accepted his hand, however reluctantly she did so. Her acceptance had tied two great kingdoms in blood, and Harras had made it happen.

In a moment he remembered how his father had fallen for his mother on first sight, a woman he thought so beautiful that it was worth marrying a mainlander for. Harras had prepared himself for such a marriage his whole life: not to a beautiful woman but anyone who could earn him a powerful boon to his family. His wife could have been an old hunchback and he would have married her if it was for the good of his house.

But the Targaryens were something else. Jon didn't quite have their same unreal beauty, their silver hair or starlit eyes. Harras had resigned himself to perhaps marrying one of his cousins or one of House Drumm's many daughters. But here he was standing before a fair young woman, and a princess of the greatest house Westeros had ever known.

And she had accepted his hand in marriage.

”I…” A single letter, and somehow Harras managed to stammer it. Far from blushing, it almost seemed as though the blood had drained from his face. In some respects, the feared reaver seemed almost mortified. He was beyond happy, just too unsure that this was actually happening to him. ”… There is no apology necessary, my la- my grace... your grace. I know my people’s reputation is poor and often well-deserved, but I would be happy to answer any questions you have. It is the very least I can do, considering your brother and I just ambushed you with a marriage proposal.”

His voice, coarse as sea salt, was still low and humble as he spoke. Unlike Jon, Elaena’s very looks and manner brought out the mainlander in Harras. His back stiffened like a broomhandle had been forced up his backside and his shoulders squared so thoroughly they could be used to shelve houseplants. He strode over to her, the tattered cloak that barely covered his dark ringmail billowing as he produced a hand for her to take. Harras only now realised how calloused and dirty under the nails his hand was, and his fingers twitched as he fought to withdraw the offer.

Best to commit, he thought. She was his wife now after all, or would be soon.

”The journey was long but the winds were kind. Whilst I feel I am long overdue for a bath, I wouldn’t turn down the offer of a drink with a beautiful lady first.” He smiled as best he could as he spoke, trying not to lay his compliments on too thick. It mattered not that she had already agreed to be his wife, he now felt the need to woo her as the heroes in those stories so long ago had wooed their queens. Whether she took his hand or not, Harras would follow her lead. ”Though I must say, your brother must care a great deal for you to risk losing a powerful alliance to you refusing my hand. I doubt there are others who would have done the same for their sisters.”
ELAENA TARGARYEN
 direct link • Aug 16 2017, 06:02 pm
Quote
High Princess of Westeros
The Fair Dragon
The Seven Kingdoms
ESSOS
18 years
Athena • she/her • 27 posts
Offline


The Fair Dragon wasn’t entirely sure what she was doing. She should have taken more time to get to know this man, to gain from him whatever she could before accepting his proposal of marriage. There was a slight fear though that if she had refused he would swiftly walk away from her and possibly even tell her enemies her location and leave her to the wolves, or rather she supposed the stags. Elaena did not enjoy games though, at least games of real life, considering she liked cyvasse quite a bit. But she knew the Targaryens had few cards to play, and her maidenhead was quite a strong one but considering the fleet of the Ironborn, it was well worth it.

She looked to the man for a moment, sizing up what more she could of the man who would be husband. Other ladies were often sent to a man they had never met to marry. At least Jon had given her the choice, and Elaena wondered briefly if Jon had expected her to accept the offer or not. But with Dorne allied to them through her sister and now the Iron Islands allied to them through herself, she thought they might have a leg up in this war finally. Slowly they were starting to amass the sort of power they would need to take back their throne, to give Jon what was his by birthright.

The Ironborn began to speak again and Elaena let out a small laugh as he stammered over what title to address her as. It made no matter in truth, she cared not for her own pride at a title. She cared for her family’s pride, certainly, but titles were only necessary when power was required to be communicated. He was already aware of her position and soon he would be her husband, presumably the person to know her best of anyone in this world, the one she would be tied to. “You may call me Elaena. If we are to be wed we do not need to deal in titles,” Elaena said with a small smile to the man and a nod of her head. She would give him a fair chance, she knew, and she wanted whatever alliance was here to work out. She wanted to set them up for success.

“I do not think ambush is the word I would use. I had a feeling that this war would require my betrothal in order to win an ally. I hardly expected such a betrothal to be to an Ironborn, but at least it is to one who seems well spoken and ready to answer my questions,” she said with a small nod, showing she wasn’t completely insulting his people. She didn’t exactly think highly of the Ironborn, but they were a strong people and she knew their military power would be useful. And he didn’t seem quite the barbarian she had been led to believe Ironborn were. It was curious certainly, but she assumed she would soon learn plenty about her betrothed.

She looked at the hand he offered her for a moment and she noticed the dirt that had built up but she told herself it would be best to take it. And possibly to get used to the dirt. He was a sailor and an Ironborn, she could not be certain that he bathed often, but she could hope that once they were home he would. She wondered briefly how long it would be until the wedding itself, wondering if she would be able to be wed in the Great Sept of Baelor, or maybe he didn’t even wish to be married in a sept. She knew the Ironborn followed a different god then her seven and she felt a small frown on her face. It was something she would need to ask him about anyway.

She took his hand though, knowing she wanted to take steps toward a good marriage. “I am glad your journey was at least accompanied with good winds. The least I can do is forgive you for not having bathed yet,” she said with a small smirk, supposing that answered her internal question about how often he bathed at least. “My brother does care for me a great deal, yes. He also knows that while I do not carry the name ‘Defiant’ like my sister that I would not easily marry a man I despised. He also should know though that I know where my duty lies, and currently that is in retaking the Iron Throne for House Targaryen,” she said with a small nod. Jon had promised he would never force her to marry against her will, but that had been before. Before all the death and being driven out. She was glad he had not changed, but she also was ready to marry for duty as he required.

She looked to her companion for a moment as she began walking toward a tavern where she knew it was safe for her to be, one she had visited before. She felt herself feeling slightly nervous, butterflies acting up in her stomach. She had never been good with men, with speaking to them or even flirting with them. She was a High Princess of House Targaryen, but people had always scared her and while she was trying to be less afraid these days, the nerves were still kicking in and reminding her that if she messed this up she could lose the alliance and everything else. She couldn’t misstep here, and she knew it.

“Do you follow the Drowned God? Or the Seven? Or another entirely?” she asked, knowing her questions were plenty but certainly that was one of her main ones. She had many questions about the stereotypes of the Iron Islanders, from their god to the reaving to the raping. She was curious what sort of mess she had agreed to here, curious about him. She led him inside the tavern, finding them a seat off to the side of the room and asking for a carafe of wine for the two of them.
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