(1310-07-02) He's a Bad Man!
Summary: A quiet afternoon's investigation of rock pools is interrupted. Gal hugs a bear.
RL Date: Mon Jul 02, 1310
Related: None
aedhwyn philippe gal fleur 


Fortune laid the foundation for the grand port of Marsilikos; look how the arms of the land spread wide to embrace the setting of the sun, welcoming a bay of still waters rendered all the more peaceful by the presence of a small island to the south, on the flanks of which the waves cut themselves into powerless ripples as they move in from the sea. But what Fortune gave the D'Angelines their cunning and craft has improved to a hum of efficiency and culture. The natural bay has had its curved shores sharpened into straight edges bolstered with ridges of heavy stones on which the tides have left long mark when the waters are low, algae and barnacles hung onto the rugged stones. Then stone foundations have been piled out into the harbor to hold up wide wooden pillars and the great treated slats of the piers and boardwalks which extend into the bay, now at wider intervals for massive trading vessels, now at shorter intervals for private fishing and pleasure yachts.

The southern arm of the bay is reserved for the great sourthern fleet of the Terre D'Angan Navy, which is headquartered here in Marsilikos, and is ever a hub of activity, the giant slips outfitted to haul the massive warships up into the air for repairs, while further inland on the southern peninsula a forest of masts rises into the air where new ships are being built and old ones repaired in full drydock. Between the naval slips and the drydock rises the stately edifice of the Southern Naval Headquarters, glistening with huge latticed windows on the upper floors. Beyond the headquarters rises the massive fortified promontory of the Citadel, with bleached-white parapets and fluttering banners.

Markets and vendors throng the plaza at the innermost fold of the harbor where civilian and military seamen alike might find a bite to eat, supplies for their next mission, a good drink or a little bit of companionship. Far in the bay, that little isle sports a lofty lighthouse to guide the ships in by night.

It's another day of humid heat, and the light fall of drizzling rain does little to alleviate the discomfort of the fair citizens of the city. It's one of the reasons why Fleur has chosen to bring her children to the port today, for what little breeze there is might easiest be found where ships bob on bright water. Along a seawall and down some steps is where she'll be found; both she, Bastien and Giselle crouched on the rocks whilst investigating tidal pools with sticks and jars. Two guards in the livery of the Valais family keep close guard on the trio, though don't intrude on their enjoyment of the afternoon. "Mama! Ici! A crab! I have a crab!"

You know that the worst of the summer heat is here when even the rain feels less like a refreshing sprinkle and more like the remnants of lukewarm tea pattering down, warm and gross through the dense moisture that lurks in the air. Add that to having spent all morning in the standard armour of the City Guard, and that makes for a passel of regularly sweaty boys tromping their way down to the docks after their shift. Ercole, Jean-Marc and Gal, sweating through their tunics and sitting in a swampland in their hide trousers. Jean-Marc opens his arms to the sky, hoping for some relief granted by the rain, and Gal and Ercole are discussing the relative merits of a bottle of wine. It's nice and cool in the basement of the Kraken's Den, on the one hand. On the other, nothing heats the blood better than a bit of wine, and Gal is of the opinion that any added heat will cause him to burst into flames. Mark it down, all and sundry. The first day since he first sipped the stuff that Gal doesn't want a drink. The three of them are as shells in the con game of a cunning mendicant; two common, one noble, but to try to pick out the nobleman among them is a fruitless effort, so similar and familiar they are to one another, so idly they wander together in their boyish wanderings. Finally, Gal is stricken with an idea, and, without warning, drags his sopping tunic overhead, taking a deep breath and letting it out in a satisfied-sounding roar. "C'mon, guys! Let's swim!" And down the trio begin pounding feet to the edge of the boardwalk and where the rocks lead down to the water and where the children are looking at crabs.

The rockpool explorers are shoeless, these having been kicked off in anticipation of dipping some toes in the water. Fleur's skirts have been hitched on one side and tucked at her waist, not scandalously so, but just enough that there's a mid-calf length clearance of her legs. A giggle at her son's enthusiasm. "Careful of it's pincers, Bastien!" It's a teeny tiny crab that he's found, and it dangles helplessly from his fingers, his sister looking on wide-eyed. It's a happy looking family that they make, even if there's one key figure missing. The approach of Gal and his friends isn't noticed until they're almost upon them, and a hand goes to Fleur's eyes, shading them from the directness of the son. "Gal? Is that you?" Her voice calls across the distance between them, and despite her relative deshabille, she makes no move to correct her attire.

Gal is hopping on one foot from tone to stone, wrangling his boot in his other hand as the lads with him pass him and run straight into the water to cool down. Gal is almost on their heels, tunic and boots nigh to discarded when he hears his name and turns mid-hop, hopping less enthusiastically and finally just standing there on one foot, wordless for a long moment as he takes in the strange, ghost-like apparition in front of him. "Uh— yeah. Hey," he tries, somehow, to sound casual. Fails. It's no wonder she's a little hesitant to identify him. It's been closer to a year than not since the last time they saw one another, and Gal is in his peak sprouting years. He's probably close to a half-foot taller than the last time she saw him, and broader at the shoulder, chest more full, coming into the flower of manhood from a gawkish adolescence. And he's not wearing a tunic, so all of aforementioned is well and plain on display. "… Hey," he echoes himself, somewhat hapless, caught by the moment as surely as that little crab in Bastien's fingers.

"Well look at you, Gal. I don't think I've seen you since…" Her voice falters, a shadow of loss in her face. "Well. Since Louis…" Her smile is tight, and the hand that had shielded her eyes pushes backwards across her head, her fingers splaying through her hair. "You've grown, Gal. Sprouted like a weed. As have Bastien and Giselle." A glance to the children that are now looking in Gal's direction. "Mama?" This from the blonde-headed girl who stands ankle deep in the water. She holds out her hands to Gal. "Man!" Bastien carefully puts down his jar and, still carrying the crab struts over to where Gal struggles with his boots and carefully puts the crab in the one that's removed. A twitch of Fleur's lips. "Were you going for a swim? We have a picnic with us if you're not. Nothing special, just some peaches and chilled lemon water. Some bread and some pastries. Is it your day off?"

Gal's eye contact flees Fleur's, he looks out over the sea for a little bit, then, taking a deep-bracing huff of sea air into his nostrils, "Heh— yeah, oh my gosh, look at them. Jeez, they're huge," he looks over his young niece and nephew. To the former, he bends a little bit, "Hi," he issues almost timidly to the girl, gratifying the boy immensely, no doubt, in missing the addition of the present to his boot. Standing up again, "Uh— no, we," he nods his head back toward the other two who have gone off without him into the water, e v e n t h o u g h it was his idea in the first place. "We just got off of the morning shift, but we're not due back to barracks until after dinner drills. So. We just. Are off 'til then, y'know. Um. Sure, anything chilled is welcome right now. This heat, huh?" Weather: perenneal safe conversation topic.

"Say hello to Uncle Gal." A smile from Fleur that floats between her children and her brother-in-law. Introductions made, and minus one crab, she shoos the children back to the rock pool. "It has been hot yes, but the children love it. Especially when they get to have afternoons like this by the water. I have a feeling I might find some seaweed in my bed later, or in one of my drawers, but I want them to enjoy being children whilst they can." She pulls a bag from beside her, opens it and takes out some bread, holding it out to Gal. "So how have you been? Has being in the guards 'straightened you out' as your father had hoped?"

Both Fleur, Gal, two young children and a couple of guards are down amongst the rocks below the seawall of the port. Tidepool exploration is the order of the day, and it's mid-afternoon. Despite the heat, there's a steady drizzle of rain.

Aedhwyn is becoming a not unfamiliar sight in Marsilikos as she takes to her daily wanderings. She looks a bit more 'civilized' today, if only because of the rain she wears no woad upon her body. The design upon her temple must be a marque. Her companion, an older Alban warrior, looks perhaps more fierce as it becomes obvious how many of the markings on him are tattoos and not just woad. She wears a pair of oiled leather short pants that are positively scandalous, only making it part way down her thighs. Her top consists of a embellished bandeau though that is steadily becoming drenched with the drizzle. Her hair has been braided into a multitude of braids which are then pulled back into a braid that runs down the middle and down to her waist.

Gal kicks off his other boot at long last. He's down to just his trousers, which he rolls up to his knees, baring his blossoming form to the elements, otherwise, for maximum relief from the heat. He crouches down and then crosses his legs to sit somewhat cock-eyed on a rock nearby, leaning forward to take a piece of the bread and pretty much inhale it. Did he even chew? Oh, well, it's gone. And it doesn't seem to be causing him much trouble, since he goes on to say, "I dunno about 'straightened out,'" with a tip of a bared shoulder in reply, "But it turns out being broke isn't really that bad. I may never go back to the frilly life," sounds more angled to be a threat to his father than anything else. As if to get back at the old man for cutting his allowance by living like a peasant and generally in a manner unbecoming the name.

With the children away and playing once more, Fleur's dips her own feet into the water, laying her skirts carefully across her knees so the hems won't get drenched. Salt water and silks — not the ideal combination. "You look more like Louis this year than last. I can hardly believe a whole year has passed." There's somewhat of a fascinated look on her face as Gal makes the bread disappear, and she pulls a linen-wrapped bundle from her bag. "Pastries." She sets them between her and him. "Still warm too. We picked them up on the way." All sorts of delicious smells rise as the edges of the linen are drawn back; almonds and marzipan. Cinnamon spices. She takes one for herself, fingers working to delicately pull the layers apart. It'd be difficult for them to spot Aedhwyn from where they sit amongst the tidal pools, and she flicks a little of the water Gal's way as she further goes on to say. "You make the 'frilly' life sound terrible. Do you really mean that?"

Gal looks out to sea once more, "I don't look like him," he denies it, even if it may be true, with a ittle bit of teenaged sullenness woven in the words, as if daring Fleur to argue otherwise. It's hot, and Gal mentally waves off the pastries, but too soon the scent is tempting his bottomless hunger and he grabs a couple or three and holds them in one hand against his chest, using his other hand to eat one at a time. He squints his eyes into the spatter of water, "It's not bad. But neither is this. And this is. Easier. Y'know. The only expectations are be here at this time, stand there for so long, show up for drills, be in barracks by curfew. Cut and dry. Nobody I need to impress every second of the day. Nothing I really need to think about."

<FS3> Philippe rolls Intimidation: Great Success. (2 3 7 2 3 6 7 5 3 8 5 6 6 1 5 8)

No fanfare. Grim. Dark. Enter the Vicomte de Lunel — the dread Philippe Morhban d'Eresse. Massive. The elder terror is surprisingly sober and as he emerges from the gates that house the great Southern Fleet those who know of the sea avoid his path. This sends sailors this way and that as the path before him parts before him like meat under the sharpest blade. His axe dangles from his belt as the mass of black makes his way forward. Behind him runs a servant who is covered in sweat. A meaty mitt strikes out and Philippe just takes a bottle the servant presents. The scowl that follows brings Philippe close to the servant and his sober breath washes over the poor soul's face like a fierce gale of fuming hate.

White-knuckled Philippe grips the poor under his arms and lifts him bodily from the ground just after he sends the bottle hurling to shatter against a nearby wall. "I don't drink that foreign piss you insulate shit-stain." He growls and then sends the man through the air to land on his ass with a grunt. Red-faced and with his beer gut heaving as he mouth-breathes through his fury the dread man turns and states, "If my beak isn't fucking wet and soon I'll feed you to the sharks piece-by-piece." That sends the servant running. Either out of the lands to hiding or to get some piss that isn't so disagreeable to the tyrant.

Aedhwyn is obviously not entirely Alban, her features are too fine, her bone structure too slight. Her muscles are toned and lean, definition easily seen. On her hip, she wears a very thin, stilletto dagger, a weapon of defense rather than offense. When she speaks d'Angeline, it is flawless as if she were a native speaker but her accent is just a little off, watered down as if she learned it second or third hand. For the moment though she seems to be conversing in a mixture of Cruinthe and Eirean with the warrior. <Do I smell sweets?> She pauses and seems to be scenting the air, which usually is a poor idea by the docks but it would seem she does so anyhow. <I know I do….those are the kind that Paris gets for me.> Her path seems to deviate a bit, searching for something. Though she doesn't seem to be paying particular attention to her surroundings, weaving through the assorted passerbys. The thing she didn't expect was the flying servant which gets a shriek? squeak? of alarm and Aedhwyn being bodily lifted and moved out of the way. Another step and she would have been flattened.

Fleur's head twists, and she squints up, up, up. Up to where the sound of a man cursing can faintly be heard. A skew of her mouth. Like any mother would in the circumstances, she glances to where her children play. Bastien is dipping his jar in the rockpool, and Giselle is draping her head in some seaweed. And then to her guards. And then to Gal. A tilt of her head. Her smile falters. "You're stubborn, like him." And that's all that perhaps she's going to say on that matter, for further thoughts are scattered from her head by the shattering of a bottle upon the wall, and the raining down of glass upon their little party. "OH!"

"What the f—" Gal manages to stifle himself in the presence of the small ones and hid late brother's widow, but is obviously perturbed by the commotion on the docks ovehead. When it comes to the glass raining down, he lifts a hand to shield his eyes and otherwise is up from his rock in a flash, darting out into the water to collect up first Giselle and then Bastien and gather them in protectively toward their mother, holding them up and picking his way carefully so that none of them end up with glass in their feet. "Is it clear over here? Shake out the blanket and I'll find their shoes," he pledges, setting the kids down on the blanket once he's sure there's no glass on it. First he goes to shoe himsself, of course, and has the foresight to shake out his boots, letting free the errant crab before he boots up, laces up and gets to his feet, gathering what he can find of the kids' stuff and collecting it onto the blanket before, "Stay here," he bids Fleur rather protectively, and he grabs hold of a ladder and makes to climb up to the deck above.

Soft barefooted footsteps carry the dollfaced figure of Vira down the length of the docks. The Tsingani beauty with her long wild curls and bright honey eyes scans the area curiously her eyes drifting out towards the ocean with wonder. She steps closer peering off the docks curiously and taking note of all the people present with a discrete glance of those richly colored eyes. She seems alert dispite her fascinate with the cool waters. The white of her wispy like dress and the jewelry of golden coin worn with it might draw some attention but she seems quite well composed for a forigener, staring out at the waves and ships while discretely people watching at the same time.

"Wait! Gal wait!" Fleur's words fall on deaf ears however, since her brother-in-law is already scaling the ladder like a monkey. Luckily, Fleur's brought a maid along with them, as well as her guards, and once quite certain that the children are fine; once she's kissed them both on their foreheads, unhooked her skirts and replaced her slippers on her feet, she follows in Gal's footsteps. Or perhaps not precisely in his footsteps. She takes the more genteel route of clambering up the worn stone steps, leaving her maid to finish gathering the remains of their family outing and to follow on after with the children. It does mean that her guards have to split; one remaining with those on the rocks, whilst the second attaches himself like a barnacle to her shoulder. "Gal! Wait!"

Aedhwyn makes another sound that is not entirely pleasant sounding, words rushing out in Cruinthe that sound well angry. She's set down by her companion, the warrior looking at Phillipe with a snarl on his lips. She switches to d'Angeline, "What by the shriveled ball of Kushiel was that!" Apparently someone was listening to the big boys when they wren't paying attention.

The mass that is the fearsome ball of aged anger is pudgy. Under the weight of alcoholism is still the muscle and ferocity that has been drowned and snuffed under the luxury of nobility. The privilege of station carries itself in his presence and demeanor. It is a coiled ball of life-hate and anger. Empathy does not often dwell in the house of the tyrant.

Philippe stares hard after the fleeing and running figure of the servant. No guards. "What the fuck are you looking at?" The glower bites out at the guard that snarls at him. Black eyes narrow to the foreigner; perhaps a natural distrust or just a penchant for violence. "You better unfuck me with those eyes before I snatch them from their sockets and toss them in my next drink." He rumbles to the guard of the ambassador.

Gal pops up over the side of the docking, pounding out those last few rungs of the ladder two at a time and landing with a rumble of boot on plank like thunder on the sea. He looks up and down the place— the enraged bear of a man, the fleeing servant, that little barbarian girl who's been around the city (who hasn't at least noticed her? certainly not any of the city guardsmen), the Tsingani maiden quite peacably about her business. Seeing the bear come down on the barbarian with such threats, he steps up. "Dude, chill the fuck out. What is the matter with you? You just threw glass all over where my sister's children were playing down by the water. Someone could have really gotten hurt."

Aedhwyn is nearly hoping mad, another string of colourful language released in that other language before she takes a breath, calming herself. Her guard is protective, standing close to her with his hand ready to draw his sword should there be need of it. "Why are you throwing people? There is no need for that. Have you not the sense that the goddess gave a concussed duckling?" Nope, not terribly diplomatic but at least she's not yelling any more.

And reinforcing what Gal had just said, Fleur arrives. The usually composed young woman looks a little flustered as she brushes her hands over the wrinkles in her skirts. No peacock her, her gown a soft pewter grey that complements quietly the honey blonde tones of her hair. There's nothing brash or ostentatious about her, and her face is devoid of the artifice of make-up. "Gal!" Although already pale of complexion, she does pale a little more when she notes how he reacts to Philippe. Unfortunately she's not close enough as yet to do anything further than shout at the young teenage guard. Nor is she close enough to recognize anything that might indicate whom the drunkard is. Eyes flick between them: Philippe, her brother-in-law and the odd looking foreigner in her cut-off leather pants. "No further, my lady." And just to make sure that she indeed goes no further, there's the heavy hand of her guard to her shoulder.

Dark eyes shift towards where the bottle was thrown. And as the talk of children and people getting hurt begin to leave the lips of Gal the bestial bearded menace begins to show the mounting anger. The deepening of color in his cheeks lead to beads of out of shape sweat that spill from his brow. There is a general expression of life contempt that emerges on his lips. Narrowed eyes scan for the little bundles of meat and energy and a sneer and exhale follows when he finds them.

"Perhaps.." The voice is stead and calm. The beast of a man does not just display 'nobility'. No find pompous jewelry. No guards. Nothing but the axe and his temper. "Fuck the little shits. If by now a little glass will ruin their lives then they will die a terrible fucking death. Fate doesn't stop to not take shits on children. Same as adults — they die by the droves; more so when the little fuckers are weak. You should be thanking me for not treating them like little precious flowers."

"If one of the little shits get injured send them to my House and I'll see their belly's filled with food and their mother compensated. Makes no difference to be if they are inbred or not. I won't judge you two." He insults the man.

Gal displays no nobility, either, except possibly in behavior, when placed beside that of the raging bear. He's dressed only in a rolled-up pair of trousers and a pair of boots, proof enough against the blazing heat. "Fate doesn't. But you're not fate. You're a human person and can choose to act with some basic levels of civility and compassion." Or not, as the case may be. "Don't make a dark world darker by choice, man," he tries to encourage the guy. "It sucks pretty hard just as it is." The insult, at least, seems to slide straight off of his back, and for the time being he seems content trying to talk the man down, even if his somewhat less impressively propotioned body remains tensed and poised, at the ready in case need calls him to take further steps.

Aedhwyn draws in another breath before going over towards where Gal speaks with the raging man. She's tiny by comparison. Her guard doesn't try to stop her but instead stands just behind and to the side, easily within position to either pull her back or defend her if need be. "My lord, you should really apologize for your behaviour this day, if not to the man that was thrown, or to myself that you nearly tossed him into me, but then to the children so they might see that adults take responsibilty for their actions. It is not about them being coddled, it is about acting and being better."

The SHOCK of it all! Philippe's words wash over Fleur and as cheeks pinken, her hands lift to cover her mouth. Her guard's hand tightens every so slightly where placed on her shoulder, and there's a grumbling in his throat. "The lad will deal with this." Somewhere, quite soon, the other guard, the maid and the children will arrive. But not yet. Family outings take time to pack up. Probably just as well. Her chin lifts and her eyes bore into the back of the drunkard's skull. She almost doesn't even notice Aedhwyn's approach of him, until she's there and speaking to him. "I don't think he'll be in a mood for debate." It's softly spoken, not meant for anyone's ears except perhaps her own and those of her guard.

Perhaps Philippe was spoiling for a fight and the response of Gal seems to wash over him and his ire settles just a bit. There is a slow exhale and rosy-red cheeks calm their color just a hair. The hand that was lingering near the head of the axe shifts and the white-knuckled bite of his nails against his palms relents. There is a moment when Philippe was about to get froggy and jump and the lines in his bulk shift and tighten only to relent but only at the sight of a servant at full sprint with an unmarked skin of what one could presume is non-piss to peel the paint of his soul. Behind the man are a few guards. Men that wear the heraldry of the d'Erresse begin to approach in their armor. The particular flavor of their tilt suggests they are servants of the dreaded Philippe Morhban.

You know the man surely? He once took a single ship into a storm at night in the middle of an invading fleet that was about to catch the port by surprise. He and a few men slaughtered those on board and then once daylight broke in the middle of the violent swells directed the entire fleet into treacherous waters where they were tossed and sent to deep among the merciless shoals. An entire fleet ruined by one man and his prowess at taking life in the deep. That guy. Those near them can tell it is him when the skin is presented and the bear like man takes it and drinks. The world is tuned out. The adam's apple bulges up and down as he swallows and drinks deep. Drops of liquor smear the whispers and spill down his beard to dribble on his chest. And as he exhales a sigh the dark eyes of the man settle on the ambassador, "The day the words I'm sorry leave these lips are over." He informs her (them), "I stopped being sorry the moment my little girl spent a week vomiting until her throat could only churn her blood. Ever prayer and weak cry for her father or mother did nothing. Every desperate breath for life extinguished as her cries became weaker and weaker until she left this giant shit bucket called life. Then her mother went off and did the same after caring for her — not that I gave a shit." He pauses and looks to each in turn. "Let me be clear, I don't give a fuck about you. I don't give a fuck about them." He informs them "One day when there is nothing but sails of darkness on the horizon. When you are trembling for your little bastards and their well-being. I'll be the one leaving the port to doom and glory and your prayers will fall on my ears. It is after that day that you will be saying how sorry you are to me. Happy I'm the one sailing out to meet the death that comes for you and yours."

"Philippe Morhban d'Erresse appologized to no man, woman, or child."

<FS3> Fleur rolls Politics: Success. (5 4 6 3 1 3 4 3 6 2 8)

<FS3> Aedhwyn rolls Composure: Good Success. (3 3 8 4 3 8)

Gal has swilled like that before. It touches his heart— the talk of the cruelty of fate laid the path, but it's the way the big bear of a man drinks, drinks with desperation, it touches Gal to the heartstrings because he has had that same drink, letting it block out everything dark and terrible. When the man's story comes to the fore, it lines Gal's lower eyelashes with a salt dew, seeing the man's pain for what it is. The menace leeches from his posture, that readiness to fight turns slack, and he hears the man out, then completes his approach. But not to attack. Just to wrap the big guy up in a hug. "I'm sorry," he fulfills Phillipe's prophecy somewhat early. "I'm so sorry." Not for upbraiding him, mind. Well, possibly, in part, for that, too. But these are word of compssion, consolation.

"That is the Vicomte de Lunel? That is Philippe Morhban d'Eresse?" Incredulity touches Fleur's tone as she tries to push her guard's hand from her shoulder. It might be the history that it gives, but it might also be that she recalls the stories she'd heard of his exploits as a child. "How sad. My father used to tell me stories of his exploits when I was little, and look at him now." Her chin lifts, her shoulders square, and her chin walnuts at the destruction of a childhood hero. She does, nevertheless, wince when Gal hugs him. This could be good, or potentially disastrous.

Aedhwyn draws in another breath, her fingers starting to curl upwards into a fist only to be released once more. "You have lost a great deal and for that I am truly sorry but that gives you no right to treat others in that manner. Your family would not wish to see you consumed by pain nor lashing out blindly at others because of it. One day you will apologize and I hope that it comes soon before there is nothing left. Peace to you, Philippe Morhban d'Eresse."

<FS3> Philippe rolls Composure: Good Success. (7 7 5 2)

Is… is he being hugged? Philippe just stares down at the embrace and starts to tremble. This isn't the shakes before a good hug it out cry. It's like hugging Santa (if Santa were a violent killer and drunken zero empathy malcontent) and the words that follow hold their composure. "Unless you are about to fall to your knees, put my cock in your mouth, and suck me until there is nothing left. I suggest you get your fucking arms off me before I grab your wrists and start jerking until they rip from your torso. I will then use the limbs to masturbate until they decompose too much to have any value. That is when I'll return them to you."

"There is nothing to be sorry about. My child is dead. The light in my life has been extinguished." He then adds to the woman who gets hero crushed, "There are no heroes. Only those who survive." Dark eyes settle on the Ambassador, "Might gives me the right. Might, blood, and deeds. Which is more than I can say for most people of station. And don't ever mention peace to me again… there is nothing I want more than death and violence. Don't ever curse me with peace. Peace is for the living."

"I am the living dead." He growls and then uncorks the skin and finishes its contents. A few labored breaths. "Now, unless this is turning into violence or a circle jerk. I believe I will take my leave."

Aedhwyn looks to Philippe as he speaks, the colour rising on her features at the eloquent turn of phrase he uses to encourage Gal to get off him. She doesn't have the benefit of having heard the stories of who he was. There is a shake of her head, her hand reaching out not to the raging lumberjack but instead to Gal. "It will do no good this day, my lord, and I've no wish to try to defend you from him."

Bastien, his sister, the maid and their guard are next to make it up the stairs from the beach. "Mama!" He wriggles away from the maid and makes a beeline for Fleur, arms chugging at side as he breaks into a run. It's unfortunate that he happens to spot Gal a split second after. "Uncle Gal?" What's this? There's menace in the tone of the man his uncle's trying to hug, or are they fighting!!!so drawing the wooden stick sword from his belt he scurries in their direction. And WHACK! If Philippe's not already moved, or quick enough on his feet, he'll recieve a hearty smack from the red-painted weapon of doom. "BASTIEN! GET BACK HERE!!"

<FS3> Gal rolls Unarmed: Good Success. (5 4 2 4 4 4 7 2 8)

Gal takes Philippe's ranting the more easily now— knowing its source in pain all too well. Trauma leaves scars on the soul that might not be visible as a scar on the body, but are plainly visible in the behavior displayed. Gal has his own. Plenty of them. And so he takes the threats with a calm spirit, merely declining to give the man a blow job with a gently voiced, "Not in front of the kids," though he probably had the general notion that some close physical contact may help the situation more than hurt. Speaking of kids! Here comes Bastien, and Uncle Gal is turning away from the raging bear and doing a quick side-step and swoop to try to scoop up the kid before he can annoy the bear with his toy sword, sweeping the kid up into his arms. "Woah, kiddo. It's OK. Wow! You've gotten so heavy. How old are you, now? Show me on your fingers?"

<FS3> Philippe rolls Intimidation: Great Success. (5 6 7 3 7 2 7 1 6 3 2 6 8 3 8 2)

Philippe is hit with a wooden sword. And then the little one is in the arms of their uncle. And the Vicomte seethes. One giant mitt moves to the head of his axe and he tugs it from his belt as if he were fine with lopping off the head of the little warrior. Anger has taken its hold and as the blunt white teeth of the menacing man grow feral he finds the child's eyes. Dark villainous and terrifying rage is directed on the youth. If he were a true beast his hackles would be raised. The shivering impulse is communicated in that look. It makes the child tremble, quake, and finally start crying. The uncle is greated with the pungent smell of soiled britches.

Perhaps there is some spark of soul left in the violent killer. As he turns and walks away with axe in hand he stops to look back over his shoulder to the scene. He lets out a slow sigh before he makes a servant hand him another skin. He uncorks, stands, drinks a lot… and then he lumbers off.

Not another word from the man.

Aedhwyn moves to stand in the between the uncle and child and Philippe though her legs do tremble a bit at just the sheer rage. Her hand goes to her dagger but she doesn't draw it, not wanting to make the situation worse. Her colour is high and her muscles are tensed to move. Her jaw is set in spite of her fear that courses through her. Only when the great big beast turns and stalks off does she nearly sag, like a puppet with its strings cut.

"Bastien!" Fleur is finally released, and the small party hurry over to where Gal has caught up his nephew. The two year old in the maid's arms pipes up, her golden curls halo'ing her head in the sunshine. "BAD MAN!" Giselle's voice drifts after Philippe as he lumbers off, and Fleur holds her arms out for her son. The basement of the Kraken's Den would have been SO much easier.

Gal just lifts his arm around behind Bastien's neck and curls his hand over his head, making him tuck his face in against him to try to mitigate the worst of the scare. Even his neck is hunched a little bit as though bracing against an oncoming blow, but the worst he gets is a little shit on his arm. He' had worse. Poor kid, though, is soiled through and through and that's got to be uncomfortable. "It's OK. Bastien, it's OK," he tries repeating, but he's not mom, and nobody can make it better like mom can. So the kid gets passed off. "He's gonna need a change of clothes. Um. I didn't even know you were… in town." How'd he miss that one? Probably because he hangs out with the commons, and the closest he's gotten to noble society recently was sneaking into the Eresse mansion at night to boink their kitchen maid. "Where are you guys staying?"

"Bastien. Come to Mama. Hush now, you're fine…" Fleur takes over the delightful responsibility of tucking the frightened child into her shoulder. The square of linen that'd earlier wrapped the pastries, now wraps Bastien's derierre courtesy of the quick-thinking Valliers' maid. Now that it's all over, Fleur allows herself to properly breathe, her breath exhaled in such a manner that her shoulders appear to deflate. "How sad to see someone that was so high, brought so low. Thank you for stepping in, Gal. And you too…" The last has her turning towards Aedhwyn, her fingers losing themselves in the scruff of hair at her son's nape. "I'm Fleur, by the way. Fleur Courcel nó Heliotrope de Valais." And back to Gal. "I have only been here this last month. I should perhaps have written you."

Aedhwyn draws in a breath, "Aedhwyn mab Mor Rioghain of the Maghuin Dhonn. Forgive me if I do not give you the long version, it does not quite seem the time nor place for it." She seems to be recovering from the idea of having had to face that monster. "Pain is consumming him, he sees no other way. He will learn in time the price. I only hope that it is before lasting harm is committed." She shakes her head, moving towards your small group, a shy smile given towards Gal. "Uh…hi. You were very brave."

Gal waves off Fleur's apology— if it was meant as an apology, anyhow. "Don't worry about it. It's." He doesn't even sound to have trailed off, he just started saying it and then stopped, glancing askance and lifting up his less shitty arm to aimlessly scratch at the back of his head, failing to make eye contact again. "It's good to see you." He offers up a wavery kind of smile to Aedhwyn, whom he knows even if he's never met her. "I'm Gal," he offers back, no titles, no family name. Just Gal. "Yeah, I can't imagine what he's going through. He just wants to die. Is already dead, with them, even. The rest is rot," his eyes shimmer, once more, with moisture, but at least no tears fall, and he just hakes his head. "He needs help," he sums up. Aedhwyn calls him brave, and he just shrugs his shoulders deferently. "Neh. He wasn't going to do anything with all these armed guards here."

"It's a pleasure to meet you Aedhwyn mab Mor Rioghain of the Maghuin Dhonn…" Fleur's voice trails off, something about the woman's name pricking at a memory somewhere. A frown when Philippe is spoken of. "We all lose people we love," she says quietly. "People either deal with it, or they don't. Ultimately it is up to them." She's dealing with it herself. "But I think that I had probably get this young man home and fixed up." A kiss to Gal's cheek. "Call sometime. Bastien could use some lessons with his sword." And with a wry smile to both, she turns and leaves.

Aedhwyn speaks softly, "It is a pleasure to make both of your acquaintances." There is a bit of a pause as she looks at the remains of the glass. "I am not certain he would not have done anything. He threw that poor man and he no longer seems to care if he lives or dies. I feel sorry for his people, that they must suffer beneath his wrath." She shakes her head, "I am glad the little one is alright and that you are as well." She looks to Fleur, "Until next we meet, my lady."

Gal ducks a little bit to take his sister's kiss to his cheek, standing in a little bit of a stupor, still, as if this whole thing had been some sort of weird dream. But he nods his head and gets the details of their current residence from the maid before standing there and sort of awkwardly tossing a wave after them. Finally, clearing his throat. "Sorry. I've seen you around, for sure, can you … just, you name, one more time? What should I call you?" he wonders, because he doesn't think he can manage the whole thing like his sister could. She's a magician like that.

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