Beware the Chasind Brew

((OOC 9th of Bloomingtide 9.35 with  after the events of This Thread))


It was bad enough he had been sent here, bad enough that he had seen the new owners of the house he had owned transfer into the hands of his in-laws and a kick in the teeth at the letter from his brother that had been waiting for him when he arrived. To cap it all off less than a day later another letter arrived for him. which had the Warden delivering it looking exasperated, his mother telling him that due to his brothers actions she had gone to Orlais. It must have been serious for her to leave Ferelden for Orlais. 

If that didn't test his temperament the place he was currently imprisoned at was not even big enough to swing three cats around let alone one. Four separate rooms and for a guy of his size he could barely fit in the bed that had been assigned to him. Of all the arse end places he could have been sent. this was the arse end of the universe to end the universe. The yard wasn't much better so training was a pain and if he had to look at the pitying and condescending looks of the other wardens here he was going to swing for one of them. Not thier fault but right now he wanted to hit something or someone. whichever came first and as Daniel was not here then the training dummy would have to do.  What had grated more was Henri had been imprisoned. Callum thought that was unfair, he wasn't sure how to take Henri but he sure as hell didn't deserve that. Gee that brought a whole new meaning to the phrase "Someone pissed in the Warden Commanders Cornflakes" 

And where was that two faced prig? in the fricking deep roads! Angry at everything right now and right now the dummy got the brunt of his growing anger "What does the frigging dwarf know about anything!" he snarled and hit the dummy with a side swipe "he's supposed to be the arl but he does sweet FA about anything unless it interests him to do so, if he don't want it then it should go to someone who has an interest in something more than bloody Grey Warden business." he struck the dummy again "and as for that Marcher Bastard!" he threw his sword at the dummy narrowly avoiding the person in the next square.  

With a grunt he apologised and kicked the dummy back to its stand before putting it upright. He needed a drink, he needed to get drunk for one night, thing is Callum could hold his liquor, no good being a booze merchant if you couldn't hold your booze. That and the Grey Warden ability to not get rat arsed straight away would not help. He could look for Alia shed know the best watering holes out of watching senior wardens gaze but he wouldn't even know where to start, she might be the other side of the country for all he knew, he hadn't seen her since...well since just before the Blight and he didn't even know if she had survived that. Some best friend he was. Callum put a hand over his face and drew it down in a mask besides she didn't even know he was a Grey Warden well, that was a conversastion he was not looking forward too. 

"Hey Avos!" he called as he saw the mage walk across the courtyard "I assume i am allowed to go have a beer that i am not confined to this mouse hole?" Wouldn't matter if he wasn't he was going for a beer or ten and not even a mage like Avos was going to stop him. 
Avos was confused. He blinked down yet again at the roll of vellum, screwing up his eyes in case that might help him to understand the scrawl. But aside from the writing being horrendously unneat, the meaning itself was perfectly clear. Curt, even.

As punishment for his part in escorting his newly-manifested newphew to Kinloch Hold, Callum Kennedy was reassigned to the compound in Denerim. He was to initiate no contact with any member of his family in any way whatsoever. Any correspondence initiated by them was to be vetted by Avos. Well, that was simple enough: with Avos being the only permanently assigned Warden in the compound, all correspondence was directed to him anyway.

But he was still confused. Why was any of this an issue? He could accept that the issue of relinquishing all claims meant that Callum's direct assistance in the matter of his nephew desevred some punishment. But this seemed extreme, even for the uneducated southern lands. All this over a little magic? In Tevinter, the family would be hosting wild celebrations!

Sighing, Avos rolle dup the vellum for the tenth dozen time and stored it away in his desk. Spinning on the ball of his foot, he departed the small office and out into the yard, confronted with the site of a very agitated Callum taking his temper out on a sparring dummy.

On catching sight of Avos, the man called out. "Hey Avos! I assume i am allowed to go have a beer that i am not confined to this mouse hole?"

"Given the Commander's..." Avos paused, delicately searching for a polite way in which to describe Berlra's current mood, "... current displeasure, I think it would be adviseable if I joined you." He brightened, not seeing this as a chore in the slightest. "It has been quite some time since I could indulge freely. For a country of delightfully wild barbarians, you are rather staid in your upper circles. It is quite disconcerting to say the least."

He gestured that Callum should fall into step with him as he made towards the main - and only - entrance. "Perhaps you can also explain more of this situation to me. I have only the Commander's explanation, and he treats his words as a miser treats his coin."
"Given the Commander's..." Avos Paused for a moment and to Callum it looked as if he was searching for the right words. "... current displeasure, I think it would be adviseable if I joined you." He brightened, "It has been quite some time since I could indulge freely. For a country of delightfully wild barbarians, you are rather staid in your upper circles. It is quite disconcerting to say the least."

Callum arched a thick deep red eyebrow, he was used to Avos, even liked him but sometimes he went off on some fancy vint spiel and whilst any other day he would indulge it, today was not the day. "So is that a yes or a no?" he grunted. 

Avos indicated in the diretion of the gate so he waited for him to fall into step with him and walked out with him. Cal's face was a dark glower and it turned meaner as he passed the house that had been his until his brother, who had caused all this mess in the first place sold it to his fricking brother in law. He stopped to look at it for a moment to see Magdelenas brother come out, look at him, and turn his gaze from him a little quickly, scurrying back indoors, well if that wasn't a look of shame he didn't know what was. 

Callium clenched his fists and was going to go and beat the man to a pulp but Avos's question quite took the wind from his sails for a moment. 

"Perhaps you can also explain more of this situation to me. I have only the Commander's explanation, and he treats his words as a miser treats his coin."

"The Warden Commander can suck my di...left foot" Callum corrected and heaved a sigh. "The Pearl i think, least i can have a drink in there without people staring." because of the business he had done both legal and not so legal, setting foot in any inn in Denerim would start more whispers then he could handle right now.

It was a while before he answered and when he did he was short in his tone, not Avos's fault but even so Callum was not a happy man. "My nephew came into his magic, its on his mothers side and she thought it would skip her. Liam, my brother, brought Stefan to the Vigil thinking we could save him from the Templars. Long and short of it, myself, Henri, Velanna and poncey danio took him to Kinloch Hold. Along the way Daniel acted like a prick and threatened to cut my nephews throat and harm to Velanna, i nearly broke his back and we took him to an outpost then took my nephew to the circle." Callum clenched his fists "My brothers actions caused this, and my punishment for circumventing Chantry law was to sent here. Henri is Locked up and the ponce is in the deep roads. Doesnt seem to matter much now anyway, they moved Stefan to Orlais and my mother and stepfather are in Jader somewhere.

At the last two sentences his voice cracked for a moment and he looked away his Adams apple bobbing up and down while he reigned in his emotions "and my brother blames me because i wouldn't hide Stefan from the Templars, i mean where could i have taken him, i do not know the first thing about magic and i couldn't take him to Tevinter, no offense but non vint mages are not treated in the way our mages seem to think they are. Besides i did not want the wrath of the chantry on my mothers head." He had heard what some Templars would do and if Daniel was anything to go by that thought seemed wholly justified. 

Callum would never serve the Warden Commander like some god who had to be obeyed, he would do what was expected but the shortarse could kiss his arse if he thought he was going to do anymore than that.



No sooner had Avos invited further clarification on the situation than Callum let loose his tongue.

"The Warden Commander can suck my di...left foot," the giant of a man snapped before gathering his temper. A sigh pushed through his pursed lips. "The Pearl i think, least i can have a drink in there without people staring."

How strange! If people were not staring, it meant nothing of note was occuring. Who would wish to be a part of the bland backdrop of life? Nevertheless, Avos did not correct the misassumption of his overly broad-shouldered companion, merely nodding along with a smile intended to soothe. 

Eventually, Callum saw fit to expand further. "My nephew came into his magic, its on his mothers side and she thought it would skip her. Liam, my brother, brought Stefan to the Vigil thinking we could save him from the Templars. Long and short of it, myself, Henri, Velanna and poncey danio took him to Kinloch Hold." What an odd group to gather together for such a mission! Avos was starting to see in part why the whole situation had imploded. "Along the way Daniel acted like a prick and threatened to cut my nephews throat and harm to Velanna, i nearly broke his back and we took him to an outpost then took my nephew to the circle." The man curled his hand into large fists. "My brothers actions caused this, and my punishment for circumventing Chantry law was to sent here. Henri is Locked up and the ponce is in the deep roads. Doesnt seem to matter much now anyway, they moved Stefan to Orlais and my mother and stepfather are in Jader somewhere."

Glancing away, Callum struggled to keep a tight hold on his true emotions. "And my brother blames me because i wouldn't hide Stefan from the Templars, i mean where could i have taken him, i do not know the first thing about magic and i couldn't take him to Tevinter, no offense but non vint mages are not treated in the way our mages seem to think they are. Besides i did not want the wrath of the chantry on my mothers head.

Well, that was quite the tale. Even if Commander Berlra was one for words, Avos doubted the full force would have adequately translated. All of which emphasised precisely what Callum had already concluded: that spending time away from the Warden compound would do wonders for Callum's mood.

"To the Pearl, it is!" Avos declared, quickening his pace. He was familiar enough with the Pearl; it was useful to establish contacts across all walks of life in his current role. Politics thrived where whispers were exchanged across pillows.

Upon entering, the pair were shown to a table. When the attractive server asked for their order, Avos waved a hand at Callum, deferring to his superior knowledge of what passed as 'acceptable' in this part of Thedas.

While they waited for their drinks, Avos settled more comfortably in his chair, folding his hands neatly in his lap. "May I enquire what you hope to achieve this evening?" He arched a brow, offering a beguiling smile before leaning forward. "So that I might begin preparing my explanation in advance. I am, after all, supposed to be a moderating influence on you."
"To the Pearl it is"

That surprised Callum no end, to be sure he didn't expect Avos to be so agreeable to this. Of course he had spoken to him, occasionally, in the keep if and when he was back at the vigil, but this was the first time he had ever actually spent any time with Avos. Joining aside that is. 

The Pearl had been a, not so favourite haunt of his back in his merchant days. His brother in law had hosted, business meetings here and normally Cal would have left before said brother in law got to the desert. Now he didn't give a damn. He wanted to drink and he wanted to just forget about being a Grey Warden (that was never something you could forget) and the wretch that walked the deep roads at the maker (if there was any justice the Maker would loose him down a dragons maw or something) and he wanted to ease the pain of loosing his family...all in a space of four weeks. 

"
May I enquire what you hope to achieve this evening?" He arched a brow, offering a beguiling smile before leaning forward. "So that I might begin preparing my explanation in advance. I am, after all, supposed to be a moderating influence on you."

Callum gave the young lady a smile and ordered two drinks. A strong Nevarran Ale for himself and whatever it was that Avos wanted. "
I want to drink myself into a stupor, forget the arsehat that is our noble commander and maybe play a few games of dice or cards if you are up for it" Cal took his ale and set some coins on the tray for the the lady. 

He looked up as he saw two merchants come in, saw him and gave him a smug look. "Nephew is a mage oh how the mighty fall" they sniggered. Callum sat back in his seat and folded his now powerful arms across his chest and arched an eyebrow at the two men in question. Such was the venom of his look it gave them pause. 

"
Gentlemen" He kicked two chairs out with his foot "My friend and i are about to play cards, perhaps you would care to join us?

The two merchants stopped thier sniggering looked at each other, made rather whiney apologies about what they had said, a look of terror in thier eyes and almost ran out the room. Callum didn't blame them but he was in no mood to play pity games. "
No? oh well."he turned his attention back to Avos "Who knows might be some entertainment at the end of it to soothe my choleric mood. What say you brother?" Of course this might also show Callum what Avos was like outside of his warden duties and whatever it was he did here. "Tell me. what is life like in the Royal Court? Poisonous as they say?

Callum had a very clear vision for what he intended to achieve that evening. "I want to drink myself into a stupor, forget the arsehat that is our noble commander and maybe play a few games of dice or cards if you are up for it," he declared. He began as he intended to go on bylifting his ale to his lips as soon as it was brought to the table.

But his attention was momentarily distracted by a pair of new arrivals. They made some irrelevant remark between each other but it provoked Callum into a a dark glower. He made an invitation that the pair join them for a game of cards but they hastily declined. That was probably the wisest decision they could have made.

"Who knows might be some entertainment at the end of it to soothe my choleric mood. What say you brother?" Callum redirected his focus to Avos which was likely the safest response for everyone within The Pearl. "Tell me. what is life like in the Royal Court? Poisonous as they say?"

"Delightfully so!" Avos beamed, relaxing into his chair. He withdrew a deck of cards from one of his many pockets and began to shuffle them in front of Callum. "Come, you must know something of the machinations which occur in business. All you must do is expand that to an entire nation and you have the heart of it! Invigorating." He chuckled lightly, eyes shining. "There is a lack of finesse, it is true. But where else would someone stab another in the literal front, rather than the metaphorical back? Such delightful uncivilised notions."

"Wicked Grace would be your preference, I presume?" He dealt five cards to each of them. "Does my wily Vint heritage not make you wary of inevitable failure?" He laughed anew, thoroughly delighted by the idea that he could be bested by a Fereldan! He would never regret his time in this wonderfully backward land; he learned so much every single day.