An Honorable Man

In which there is an apology

Peridan’s Suite [Nobles Quarters]
-This is a well-appointed suite on the second level of Anvard.  A curtained, canopied bed sits opposite the door.  An armoire of some dark wood is provided for clothing, and a small desk holds other personal items.  Two windows allow sunlight to come streaming in, and also provide a breath-taking views of the countryside.   It’s a nice place for Peridan to stay in during visits to Anvard.
You can go: Out <O>

Haft knocks on Lord Peridan’s door.

The knock is answered with a clear, “Come in!”

Peridan is seated at his desk, writing out a report. He seems very focused as the door opens.

Haft opens the door a little way, sticking his head in. “Is this a good time my lord?”

Peridan looks up, a bit surprised, “Ah, Haft. Come in. I did not expect you.”

Haft steps inside. “No, uh, I won’t keep you long.” He looks slightly abashed. “I thought I should apologize for yesterday, when I ribbed you about your wrist. It was…tactless, in front of Lady Avery, and I’m sorry about that.

Peridan blinks at this. He leans back in his chair and faces the man, “Thank you, Haft. But it was not what I looked at you for.”

Haft looks confused. “Even so. But then what /were/ you trying to get at, Sir?”

Peridan clears his throat, “I did not want to remind Lady Avery of…the event that transpired  after I fell off my horse. It was a…mistake on both of our parts and it has been rectified and put to rest.”

Haft’s eyes widen. “Honestly, Sir, I wasn’t even thinking of that.”

Peridan raises a hand, “I did not suspect that you did. But on the off chance that it stirred some memory, I did not want the conversation to go further.”

Haft dips his head. “Fair enough.” His eyes fall on the desk and he takes the opportunity to change the subject. “Work from home?”

Peridan glances down at his report, “Just a bit.” He chuckles, “The Commander I left in charge had a question and did not want to choose wrongly.”

Haft says, “No rest for you. Maybe if you hid out on one of the parapets the couriers couldn’t find you. Mind you, they’re drafty.”

Peridan laughs, “What a wonderful idea, Haft.” He grins, “There is only one problem to that suggestion.”

You ask, “I’m afraid to ask…or–wait, are your couriers Birds?”

Peridan shakes his head, “No, all my messages run through Lieutenant Bracken. And if there is one in all of the lands who could find me no matter what, it would be him.”

You ask, “Tenacious, is he?”

Peridan hehs, “Quite. But I would not have asked for a better axe at my back than Lieutenant Bracken.”

Haft says, “You had much call for axes lately? I thought there was peace in Narnia, excepting the war in the north.”

Peridan shakes his head, “It was just an expression, Haft. I hope that he will never need to use his axe as long as either one of us is alive.”

Haft says, “Every soldier’s dream, isn’t it? To master the skills but never need them.”

Peridan says, “Indeed. I would gladly give up my job as military commander if there was no need for the military.”

Haft shakes his head. “I don’t know what I’d do if there were no need for guards. I mean, I hunted in Narnia, but that wasn’t the same as finding something I wanted to do and doing it.  What would you do, if there were no need? What would you pursue?”

Peridan hmms, “Perhaps farm.” He says this with a straight face.

You ask, “Yes? Ever tried your hand at it?”

Peridan shakes his head, “No, but I have been tempted to plant a small vegetable garden behind my cottage. Something about farming intrigues me.”

Haft says, “I think I heard that Captain Garian tried his hand at it once. Gardening, not farming.”

Peridan tips his head, “Really? Maybe I can get tips from him.” His eyes are twinkling at this point.

Haft says, “Possibly. I didn’t try growing stuff when I had my own place, though Narnia’s better’n fair at providing for a forager.”

Peridan nods, “Yes, when I first arrived, I learned quick what to eat and what not to eat.”

You ask, “Oh? Didn’t just go shoving new things in your mouth without asking, surely?”

Peridan snorts, “Haft, I do have /some/ common sense.”

Haft says, “Well it is to be hoped so. I’ve met one or two Narnians I wasn’t so sure about.”

Peridan laughs, “Such as?”

Haft says, “Mostly the young Rodents. Squirrels and Chipmunks who would stick most anything in their cheeks.”

Peridan says, “They are fun to speak with though. It brightens your day.”

Haft says, “I suppose.  Didn’t spend a lot of time chatting…There was a Squirrel in the yard at Cair the first time I sparred with the Tarkaan, I think. Seemed a decent sort, if excitable, but I think that’s just Squirrels.”

Peridan leans back in the chair, “Can I ask you something, Haft?”

Haft replies, “I suppose.”

Peridan asks, “I am curious, why did you never fall in love with Narnia?”

Haft shifts his weight to the other foot. “It’s a beautiful country, Sir, but frankly, no condemned man loves his prison.”

Peridan dips his head, “You are an honorable man, Guardsman Haft. Do not let anyone tell you otherwise.”

Haft hesitates, then responds quietly. “I try to be. That night…I made a choice I regret, but it was my choice, Sir. A willful decision to disobey a set order. My responsibility, even if on any other night it would have passed without harm or comment from my superiors. I did harm…and I didn’t do any better in Narnia, but I am trying now.”

Peridan says, “And that is all that matters.”

Haft nods. “I hope so. Feels more natural than it did a year ago, anyway. More like the man I was fifteen years ago. But different too.” He spreads his hands. “I can’t really explain.”

Peridan smiles knowingly. “I think I understand.”

Haft says, “I guess everyone changes in that amount of time…I’m sure you did…but then probably you moved forward.”

Peridan rubs his chin, “It is impossible to always move forward.”

Haft says, “I guess. We all do things we regret, or learn things that make us step backwards and realign our course.”

Peridan nods, “Regrets may be painful but there are lessons that sometimes need to be learned.”

Haft says, “I’d ask you what one of yours is, but besides bordering on impertinence, I really don’t think I want to know.” He makes a face. “Megren and Sir Darrin like to play this one game with darts or cubes where you gotta answer personal questions. Don’t know how I ever let her talk me into it.”

Peridan hehs, “I am for games but not one of that nature.”

Haft says, “It frequently got…awkward.”

Peridan makes a bit of a face, “I can imagine.”

Haft says, “What sorts of games do you prefer, Sir?””

Peridan says, “Ones that involves thought and a bit of luck. Chess, Cards, things of that nature.”

Haft says, “I’m fond of chess myself. Haven’t played in several months though. My last game was with Squire Megren. She actually wrote me to ask if I’d found a real Magpie to play chess with.”

Peridan grins, “I hate to tell you but most magpies might be more interested in the shiny pieces.”

Haft lets out a snort of laughter. “A fair point.”

Peridan turns a bit to his desk, “Forgive me, Haft, but I should get back to this report. It was a pleasure to speak with you.”

Haft says, “Of course, Sir. Thank you for seeing me, and for the conversation.” He bows and leaves the room, closing the door quietly behind.


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