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Ronan Ulfricson

"If you think anyone is sane you just don't know enough about them."

0 · 1,010 views · located in Tibera

a character in “The Price of Blood”, originally authored by Scarlet Loup, as played by RolePlayGateway

Description

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โ€œIf you think anyone is sane you just don't know enough about them.โ€




The Basics




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|| Full Name ||
Ronan Bjorn Ulfricson

|| Nicknames ||
Ronan's name comes with few nicknames, but he remembers being affectionately called "Cub" by his mother in reference to the nickname his father earned in war.

|| Gender ||
Male

|| Age ||
Twenty-three

|| Rank/Title ||
Prince of Ostwall and Heir to the Throne

|| Sexual Orientation ||
Heterosexual

|| Kingdom/Alliance ||
Ostwall / Himself




What's on the Outside




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|| Hair Color ||
It is quite obvious that Ronan's black locks did not come from his brown-haired father. Instead, they bear striking resemblance to his mother's.

|| Eye Color ||
Like his father, Ronan has eyes that are a light jade in color.

|| Height ||
Six feet, two inches

|| Weight ||
Two hundred pounds

||Tattoos ||
Wanting to look like a true warrior, Ronan bears a tribal design on his left bicep.

|| Scars ||
Like Ulfric, Ronan has a variety of scars on his arms and legs. These wounds, however, all come from tournaments rather than battles. He would like to pretend, of course, that they are from a noble war, but he has never even seen a battle.

|| Description ||
Ronan is what Ulfric once was: a bear of a man. Ronan stands over his father at six feet, two inches, and he weighs about two hundred pounds due to his muscle. Therefore, he is obviously a very well-built man. He bears a strong jaw, and his cheeks appear almost sculpted. Very few wrinkles appear on Ronan's countenance, but he does show crow's feet and laugh lines when he smiles. Ronan often grows his facial hair out into a light goatee, and he lets his hair grow in thick curls just on his head. Occasionally, he will grow it out until it can just barely be pulled into a small pony tail of sorts. Unlike his father, he dresses in more-ornate doublets with a thinner coat or cloak on top.




What's on the Inside




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Personality:
{Unpredictable, Charming, Hot-Headed, Obsessive}
On the outside, Ronan appears quite perfect. He's quite intelligent and charming. In public situations, he often speaks eloquently and with deep thought to back up his ideas. In tournaments, he is ruthless and extremely skilled. However, there have always been whispers circulating about the palace concerning his true colors. Around Genevieve, he is a true gentleman. Those who have known Ronan since his childhood remember his temper and his impulsiveness. When alone, he tends to grow childish and hot-headed. In fact, no one truly understands the calming affect the Queen has on her step-son.

His behavior is, in one word, unpredictable. In just a few seconds, he can go from jovial to enraged. Ronan lacks a filter in these outbursts, but his status as Ostwall's only prince tends to give him the ability to get away with just about everything. He is obsessive to the point where he becomes overly protective of anything from a sword to a horse to a human being. If things do not follow the plan he has created in his mind, he quickly angers and often shouts and curses. He lacks the ability to carefully think his actions through, but he certainly isn't a stupid man. In fact, he is quite capable of deep thought to a certain degree. Ronan often finds it difficult to think of the long-term effects of his actions.

Still, he manages to play the role of caring brother to both of his sisters, and he conceals his true self around Genevieve. The extent to which he is capable of dragging out this illusion is unknown to anyone -- including himself.

|| Hobbies ||
  • Sparring
  • Horse Racing
  • Hawking
|| Habits ||
  • Furrows his brow when he is thinking deeply
  • Grows angry/listless when proven wrong
|| Oddities ||
  • The technology of the time (or the lack thereof) prevents Ronan from truly being diagnosed. The closest diagnosis one could make would be bipolar disorder, but even that is uncertain.
  • He is not an alcoholic, but when presented with it in a festive scenario, he tends to drink past his limit.
Likes/Loves:
  • Genevieve
  • His sisters
  • Control
  • Festivities
  • Sports
Dislikes/Hates:
  • His father
  • Losing
  • Sweltering Heat
  • Being Still
  • Being Lectured




What's Done Is Done




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Biography
|| Place Of Origin ||
Ostwall

|| History ||
Ronan's birth came in the midst of political turmoil. Freya's stress during her pregnancy, perhaps, can attest to his later behavioral problems. Still, he had a very normal childhood. His earliest memories do not stretch back to a time before life in Ostwall's Palace. Vividly, he can recall a time when he would totter about in the gardens with his mother nearby and perhaps Celia in her arms. Never did he want for something besides, perhaps, a father. For the first few years of his life, he would see very little of his father. Still, his mother played both roles very well. Unlike his father, he managed to achieve a very formal education under the most educated men of the nation and alongside his sister.

As a young boy, he grew temperamental especially when he did not get his way. Perhaps the first instance of this was when he insisted upon being allowed to follow the soldiers and his father to war at the age of nine. His mother, of course, said no. For the next week, he refused to leave his room unless someone physically carried him from it. Between tantrums, he was a very spirited young man, and he quickly found a love for sports and hunting. Through his teenage years, it was quite common to find him out on a day-long hunt with other boys of the court.

During these teenage years, he also began to question his love for Ulfric. There was a time before then that he had wanted nothing more than to be his father. Like most boys, he believed his father was a hero. Resentment toward the man, however, began to build within him. This resentment, however, was simply a result of being unable to prove himself to his father and therefore evoke his love. In the midst of his struggle to stand out, Freya died. Ronan, along with his sisters and father, were distraught, of course. She was the rock that had held them together. The remaining family members only grew more distant. It did not help, of course, that Ulfric married just about a year after Freya's death.

Ronan imagined he would hate her with every bit of his soul. He didn't. In fact, he was absolutely smitten with her. He found himself trailing after her, tending to her, and eventually subtly flirting with her. She was, in turn, affectionate. Finally, one day, he could not hold his obsession back any longer, and he confessed his love for her. His father, too ignorant for his own good, did not realize what was going on. Their affair grew more and more heated until they finally consummated it. Around this point in time, he finally decided on how he would prove himself to Ulfric. In the end, he twisted this idea until he decided that the only way he would be able to achieve this would be by doing what his father had done: rising up and stealing the throne. One, of course, does not simply take the throne from a king. Ronan knew he would need to wait and bide his time. Until the time comes, Ronan merely waits for the chance to strike when The Bear least expects it.

|| Happiest Memory ||
Falling in love with Genevieve, or winning in his first tournament

|| Saddest Memory ||
The death of his mother




Face Claim:Henry Cavill

So begins...

Ronan Ulfricson's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson

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There was a time, years before, when the Western Palace had been used simply as a retreat for the royal family of Falor or, of course, to host the decennial celebrations. Those who had attended the festivities before would have fondly recalled the way both families, despite almost constant border skirmishes, seemed to unify into one. One family melded into the other, and for just a few days, it was impossible to differentiate them from each other. This year, of course, there was the problem of dealing with the addition of a new family, the one that now permanently resided in the Western Palace. Of course, it did not help that tensions between Seabel and Falor had not simmered down in the past two years. Today marked the first full day of the festivities.

There was a joust on the palace grounds now among the younger members of the royal families now, and Ronan trotted his horse into ready position. Beneath his armored legs, the flanks of his ebony stallion heaved as the horse tossed his head impatiently. The young prince also moved about restlessly on the saddle, shifting his lance in his hand before lowering his helmet once more. Across the field, his opponent gripped the reins of his horse once more. Ronan had never been a skillful jouster, his preference lying in horse racing rather than arena sports, but he had insisted upon competing. Internally, he was quite grateful that they had paired his up with a young knight at the palace. Ronan, of course, was no knight. In fact, the concept of knighthood had failed to reach Ostwall.

His breastplate glistened subtly as the depiction of a bear paw emblazoned across his chest caught the sun. In an instant, the two figures rushed at each other with their lances extended, shields raised. Hooves pounded against the ground. Ronan leaned forward in his saddle.

His opponent's lance caught the shoulder of his armor, unprotected due to his misplaced shield, and the force was enough to unsteady Ronan, who tumbled from the back of the stallion and into the dust. For a moment, he lay in the settling dust, but as it began to cover the holes in the helmet for his eyes and mouth, Ronan coughed and sat upward. His shoulder screamed in pain, and he almost cried out, too. Instead, he merely clambered to his feet and clutched his shoulder. A few servants ran to him in place of a squire, but he waved them away in a hurried manner, nearly striking one.

The helmet only managed to cover the redness of his face, a mixture of little embarrassment and much anger, until he removed it to take his seat in the stands once more. In between his hurried exit from the field and his entrance into the stand, he stopped only once to remove the remaining armor. The gazes of the others seemed to bore holes through him as he quickly sat down in his seat. Despite Ulfric's request to place Genevieve on his right and his children on his left, Ronan took Genevieve's right.

He looked toward his father, perhaps daring the man to state his disappointment. The elder man, however, was far more intrigued by the next round. Ronan's mouth tightened, and he looked forward. Ronan's hand, meanwhile, brushed very subtly against Genevieve's dress. "Damn horse screwed up the entire thing," he said. "That beast can't do a damn thing correctly." He finally looked toward her for a moment. As they made eye contact, his mouth loosened again. The redness faded from his countenance as he gazed upon hers.

It had grown unbearable, in just a day, to have to watch her from afar. Privacy was just about impossible to achieve with a schedule full of public dinners and public activities. Seeking to preserve the moment, he tried to grab for her hand to give it a quick, reassuring squeeze. He was quite unsure, however, who was being reassured.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Celia Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Corianna Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Annabelle Waldorf

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Celia found these tournaments quite... boring? Perhaps that was the correct term? That was most likely why she had a book on her lap and her eyes were fixed on it rather than the competitions. In fact, she ignored the scene completely until her brother's joust came up. She glanced up, watching as he was thrown off his horse and she sighed. She loved Ronan, she really did, but she had to question why he participated in competitions he knew he was going to lose. He sat down next to Genevieve, not that Celia was surprised. In her mind, she reprimanded him; he should be more careful. After all, rumors were a courtesans favorite tool and it was not the best idea to give them something to talk about. Even so, it was not her place to mention this to him, should it arise more suspicion. "Damn horse screwed up the entire thing. That beast can't do a damn thing correctly," Ronan complained and she looked at her elder brother.

"Blaming the horse may not be the best course of action, dear brother. Nobody enjoys the company of a sore loser, especially one that blames a beast trained by said loser."

At least, Celia assumed in her mind that's what others thought. She didn't blame her hawk when she failed to hit her target with an arrow. It was her own folly that had caused the misplaced arrow, not Careen's. However, she knew that her brother's pride prevented him from viewing the world in this way. Celia stood up, noting that it was nearly time for her own competition, making her the first woman to participate in the archery tournament. First, she had to get out of this blasted dress; she never understood how other women could wear layers of cloth so easily. "Shall we go, Annabelle?" she addressed her Lady-In-Waiting, who sat directly behind her. She then turned to her younger sister. "Wanna come with me to get ready, Cori?"

She spoke so quietly that only people that knew her could hear her soft tone. To everyone else, she looked like nothing more than a young woman moving her lips without a sound escaping them. Celia bent down so she was level with her father. "I'm going now, Papa."

Without waiting for his answer, Celia navigated through the crowds and disappeared out of the arena. She breathed in the less foul air and walked towards the castle to change before the her own event began.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Celia Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Alistair Lannister Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Corianna Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Annabelle Waldorf Character Portrait: Rosalie Lannister

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Alistair watched as Prince Ronan Ulfricson was knocked to the dirt. A dark smirk touched his lips as he watched anger grip the prince and rage threaten. Ronan clambered to his feet and stamped off to change out of his armor and rejoin his father, mother in law and sisters. Ulfrics son was ruled by his mood, a fact Alistair would remember. Alistair had heard that the prince of Ostwall was someone of special skill and distinction, someone to watch. Watching him unhorsed in the first bout of the day was amusing to say the least. The King of Ostwall barely seemed to register his sons failure in front of the whole realm. Odd to Alistair who could only think of how his own father would have reacted. Anger, disappointment and disgust would have hung heavy on Tywin Lannisters face if the roles were reversed. Unfortunately Alistair would not be riding in the days lists, not that he hadn't wanted to. In fact he had been half way into his armor when his wife had found him. She said he should be with the other royals, as he was hosting the celebration it was his place. They had argued and she had won, like she did in so many things. The whole affair left a bitter taste in his mouth, a taste that needed washing out. Alistair reached with his free hand to grab his wine goblet and sipped the rich Arbor Red, savoring the fine vintage. His other hand was imprisoned in his wifes grasp. She had always insisted on these public displays of affection, no doubt to show the world a unified regency. Her very touch caused a storm to brew within the King.

A part of him hungered for it, yearned for her closeness. He needed her, he wanted her like a drowning man needed a breath of air. Another part, a darker part, hated it. He couldn't trust it anymore, he'd swam to the surface and found the air tainted and foul. His eyes flicked over to look upon the face of his wife. Her eyes blue turning to green like pools of cool island water that he could dive right into and stay there forever. Her long blonde hair kissed by the sun more radiant than all the gold in Casterly Rock. He watched as the breeze caressed her locks giving him a fleeting glimpse of some of the few light brown strands that seemed to hide in her sea of golden hair. She was still more beautiful than any other woman he'd ever set eyes on. Yet the person she was, the person who held all that beauty scorned him, sullied him as that damned crown sullied him. So often he'd heard them whisper, how he wasn't fit to rule, how he sullied the crown and the cloak given to him on his coronation. That's where they were all wrong. He didn't sully the crown and the cloak, the crown and the cloak sullied him. They called him king, or Your Grace or any of the other countless tedious titles attributed to him now but he knew what they all thought. He knew what they all really called him. Of all the things they titled him behind his back it was Oath Breaker he hated the most yet in a way it was also his favorite, it had a nice ring to it. They wanted a ruler, they could look to his wife, let her bother with it for he washed his hands of the whole damned lot of them.

"Well... That was anti climactic."

Came his brothers voice at his right. Alistair smirked as Tyrion leaned back in his seat, his short, stunted legs dangling off the edge of the seat as he drank deeply of his wine. Alistair took the opportunity to slip his hand away from his wife, pretending merely to lean closer to his brother but in truth he was grateful to merely free himself of her touch and the feelings it brought.

"To say the least, good thing I didn't place a bet on him."

Alistair joked. Tyrion chuckled in his cup before setting it down.

"Speak for yourself, brother."

Alistair gave his little brother a knowing look.

"You didn't."

"I did and I regret it."

Tyrion replied before the victor who unseated Prince Ronan rode out around the tourney field to chivalrously tip his lance toward his king and queen. It was only then that he removed his helm to reveal who had bested the son of King Ulfric Bjornson with a single blow.






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Loras removed his helm of shining steel, polished like a mirror. He set it at his side, his eyes on the beauty that was the queen of Seabel. Long, golden hair, porcelain skin and eyes both green and blue. Her most attractive feature was that she was his. Alistair Lannister, the King of Seabel and Lion of Casterly Rock. Loras sat there atop his white Destrier and watched as Alistair spoke with that freakish little imp of a brother. Beside the brothers was the father, Tywin Lannister, Lord of Casterly Rock. The whole pride of lions were in attendance to watch Loras unseat a prince. The whole thing made Loras smile but the smile was cleverly disguised as one of flirtation and admiration as he let his eyes hold the queen and her gaze for he knew what it did to her. His gaze flicked to his own father who sat beside the king of Falor, a respectful nod before a final glance at her majesty before he rode off down the field.

So much excitement in the world all culminating on this celebration. Every noble of worth and regent from all three kingdoms were in attendance, so many opportunists for a clever man to exploit. Loras Edwards was a clever man, a clever man who in time would cast a very large shadow. First came his hunt, once the lion pelt was he would rise and take what was rightfully his. Loras rounded the corner and damned near rode straight into a mountain. A man easily eight foot and then some tall, covered head to toe in thick black castle forged steel armor. Ser Gregor Clegane, The Mountain That Rides was seated atop a war horse that dwarfed most others, black as night. Loras was careful to steer his white pony clear around the dangerous eldest Clegane brother. Gods help whoever he rides against.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Celia Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Corianna Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Annabelle Waldorf

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There was a weight in her stomach. It was nothing to be worried about, she had been assured, but that didn't help much when Ronan got hit right in front of her. Genevieve had thankfully been able to repress her reaction to just a small gasp as she jumped in her seat. It couldn't have been much damage though, she thought. She glanced over to her... husband. She hated the thought, but for now she could do nothing about it. Ulfric hardly seemed fazed by what had happened though, so she did her best to calm herself.

Her eyes followed him the whole time he walked up, her eyes lighting up as he chose to sit beside her despite what he had been told. The girl grinned and her cheeks lifted, her nose scrunching up as she forced herself to not hold tightly to him. She nodded in agreement to his complaints as he sat beside her, frowning with concern as she reached to touch his shoulder, leaving her hand hovering hesitantly above it while Ronanโ€™s gaze challenged his father. โ€œAre you alright?โ€ She murmured gently, letting out a small laugh at Celiaโ€™s remark and turning to wish her well as she left with all of the group but Ulfric and Ronan.

This was torturous. Why couldnโ€™t the old man just find something more important to do? Or she could find something that could conveniently distract herself and Ronan from the festivities. Perhaps examining his wounds would be a proper excuse? Genevieve rose an eyebrow, touching his shoulder gently as he gripped her hand. โ€œYou should go make sure you arenโ€™t hurt, Ronan.โ€ She said, making it sound like more of an order than a suggestion.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Christoph Edwards Character Portrait: Alistair Lannister Character Portrait: Loras Edwards Character Portrait: Rosalie Lannister

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Cedric Brigham would roll in his grave to see his son and Christoph's daughter so close to each other. So close to marriage, so close to uniting their families. Christoph merely smiled against the rim of his goblet. The wine within had been watered down and spiced to the point that it hardly tasted like wine. Heavens forbid he grow ill on just the first day of the festivities. He did not do it to spite Cedric, of course, for the deceased king had been much like a brother. Still, there had always been a hint of competition between them that pushed Christoph forward. The marriage, of course, was only half of his plan.

Christoph's thoughts were interrupted violently by a mixture of gasping and cheering from the assembled nobility. Unlike previous tournaments, where he had been confined to the higher balconies along with the other nobles, Christoph found himself in the box occupied only by the royals and those in their inner circles. Being the future father in law of the King of Seabel and his royal adviser was certainly enough to finally occupy a seat beside the King on his right with his daughter on the King's left side.

The prince of Ostwall, an arrogant boy from the looks of him, had been violently dismounted by his opponent. As the heir hobbled from the field, his opponent removed his helm to reveal Loras. The boy, a mere nineteen yet truly powerful, looked first at Rosalie Lannister herself. A smile twitched at the corners of Christoph's mouth before his lips finally pulled upward. That, of course, was the second half. He returned the nod from his son with another, coupled with a nod of approval.

It had been two years since he had last seen the boy. He was only seventeen then, and now he was both the head of the Queen's guard and her lover. In truth, he was quite secretive about it, and Christoph admired that. Still, the older man had had a life time to perfect analyzing human emotions, and he could tell that there was more than just respect in the smile he shot her. There was no doubt in Christoph's mind that he had sired Loras, for Loras was a spitting image, at least mentally, of him.

A final glance was shot at the Lannisters, far too proud for their own good, side by side. His eyes could have bored holes into the back of Tywin's head with the glare Christoph shot. He would kill two birds with one stone when Loras and Rosalie finally declared their love for each other and she ended her marriage to Alistair.

In the midst of his thoughts, he managed to retain a, more or less, inexpressive countenance. Christoph twisted one of his rings about his fingers. "I pity the man who must face that mountain of a man," he remarked, leaving it open for response from any party, smirking to himself. "And I pity that horse that must sit beneath him."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Alistair Lannister Character Portrait: Loras Edwards Character Portrait: Cassandra Lannister Character Portrait: Rosalie Lannister

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"Oh my," Rosalie gasped in horror at the sight of Prince Ulfricson getting thrown from his stallion, and felt a surge of satisfaction run through her veins as she
remembered that she had been able to prevent her husband into competing in these brutal festivities. With the hand that was free of her husband, she gripped the edge of her seat; watching as a few of his servants rushed over to attend to him. A minute passed. Two. She sighed in relief as she seen him wave away his attendants and stomped off the fields in rage. "Clearly, these games aren't meant for hot heads." She whispered in her husbands ear, and gave out a soft giggle. "They do make quite the temper, but then again I am sure that is just a men's way of saying that they're of way too much high virtue to be seen in defeat." Pushing a brown strand behind his ear, she studied his hard expression closely to the tightness of his jaw and when he finally turned his attention onto Rosalie she seen the usual softness of his slate-gray eyes along with the stubble that caressed across his chin. To Rosalie, he is truly a handsome man. One that always seemed to have those moods where he felt the need to shut the world out. Even his wife for unknown reasons. It made Rosalie feel excluded, a stranger to her husband despite what all they've been through. Together.

As they studied each other, Rosalie noticed that from within those eyes, his eyes, held a pang of sadness that made her heart sink with guilt that seemed to have
haunted her since the time she had made love to her Royal Guard, Loras. It was nothing, but a one night stand. Rosalie was sure of it, but something deep within her chest told her that it was much much more than that, and it left an unpleasant sensation through the atmosphere similar the time she left her brother to the throne of Falor. Rosalie finally tore her gaze away from her husband, no longer wanting to see the hurt in his expression, and instead rested her eyes on his enthralling eyes, like sparkling kaleidoscopes of color. They were celery green, but also ocean blue. Dashes of chestnut brown specked around his irises. Loras Edwards, was his name. He was sat on the saddle of his beautiful, white Destrier at a distance watching her with his helm tucked under his arm, and a hand that gripped the horse's halter.

How long had he been staring? Rosalie could only ponder at the thought as she returned his gaze though his were more taunting; hers was full of modesty,
an eye brow raised as if challenging him. Then, he flashed her that dashing smile that proved him innocent. A dashing smile that Rosalie knew thousands, no, millions of young maidens would've found attractive. That very same smile that always seemed at triumph against Rosalie as she felt her face grow hot, and instantly whipped her attention elsewhere.. At discomfort, she began reaching a hand up to twirl at a loose golden strand, but remembered that her had been pinned up into a braided crown.

"Well... That was anti climactic." She heard a rather familiar voice say, and Rosalie turned her head to take in the sight of her husband's brother Tyrion, at
, his side. As if given a reason, Rosalie felt Alistair's hand slip from her very own. She stared at it. Her hand bare, cold, and more alone than Rosalie had ever felt. She heard her husband say something, but couldn't quite make it out as a wave of nausea passed through her. Almost instantly, she reached for her daughter's hand at her opposite side and stood as she smoothed at her satin gown. "C-Casie and I are going to the Gardens," She stammered at the two. "We shall leave you two to your discussion." Giving her daughter's delicate hand a small tug she said, her voice broke at her words, "Come along my dearest."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Christoph Edwards Character Portrait: Alistair Lannister Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Cassandra Lannister Character Portrait: Rosalie Lannister

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She left, and she took his daughter with her. Try as he might Alistair couldn't feign indifference. He was constantly at war with himself when Rosalie was around. He hated her presence, he hated the way she looked at him and the sound of her voice yet there was not a more beautiful sound in all the world than when she spoke, no feeling more grand then when her eyes were upon him, no drug in all the known world could compete with the euphoria of nearly being close to her. She took her leave and Alistair flashed her a quick glance. A look of sorrow, love, regret and shame all wrapped up in a shroud uncaring. He reached and took hold of his daughters hand as she passed him, holding her for a moment.

"Goodbye sweetheart, I will see you later."

He said before gently kissing his little girls hand as any knight would kiss the hand of any lady. He wanted to kiss his wife goodbye too, he wanted to bid her a fond farewell and tell her how the field would be lack of sunlight for loss of her presence. He said nothing and they left.

Tyrion on the other hand was silent, slouching in his seat pretending not to exist as the queen and the princess left and Ser Gregor Clegane took up his position.

"You two seem happy."

He said sarcastically. Alistair flashed his little brother a glare and downed his cup before signalling his cup bearer for another.

"Much has changed since my last visit to the capitol brother, you and your lady wife seem to barely tolerate each other these days."

"We do barely tolerate each other."

Alistair replied ruefully as his cup bearer refilled his cup and was dismissed quickly. Tyrion was not a man of strong body, capable of any physical skill but what he was capable of was thinking. Tyrion Lannister was one of the smartest most cunning people in all the kingdoms and he'd found his next riddle incomprehensibly intriguing.

"Has anything happened? You two have a fight?"

He asked. Alistair chuckled in his cup.

"Of course, we fight every day. It's about the only thing we do together anymore."

"How curious. I remember Rosalie from her days as a princess at the capitol. She was a darling girl, always courteous, kind and loving."

Alistair grimaced at his brothers words, they pained him for they brought up the bitter memory of what he'd lost and who he'd lost. His sword hand clenched into a fist as he drank his whole cup dry in one go and signaled for his cup bearer once more, at least the wine was strong. Once his cup was fill he was about to down the whole thing again when he felt a strong hand clutching his shoulder.

"Do you intend to get drunk at the first day of the festivities in front of every noble, king and person of import in the kingdoms?"

His father's voice cut like a knife and both brothers fell silent. Tywin Lannister glared at both his sons before leaning back in his chair with a scowl.

"Lannisters don't act like fools, drunken or otherwise."

Silent and angry from the reprimand by his father Alistair watched the poor, unlucky sod whose job it was to challenge The Mountain. A young lad of barley twenty years, a knight only recently risen to the rank whose name he couldn't even remember.

"I pity the man who must face that mountain of a man, and I pity that horse that must sit beneath him."

Alistair's brother, Tyrion smiled at Count Cristoph Edwards words as he turned in his seat to look at the older man and royal adviser of the young king of Falor.

"Pity is good my dear lord but think of the possibilities such a contest can have. Should this boy, under matched as he is, win against The Mountain That Rides his tale would be sung from Ostwall to Falor and back. He'd have a literal banquet of women lining up for a taste of the cock of he slew The Mountain, a course in each village and dessert to boot."

A few of the nearby lords who heard Tyrion chuckled at his bawdy words while his father sighed under his breath. Alistair never took his eyes off the boy who was practically shaking in his armor.

"He is going to die today."

Alistair said darkly as the match began. Ser Gregor charged, his monstrous war horse, black as the pit of hell came thundering down the field. The boy, to his credit didn't turn his mount around and ride off in a fright but raced toward his opponent and whatever fate lay in store for him. The crowd fell silent before the moment of impact. Ser Gregor's lance struck first, reflecting off the boy's shield, going up under the chin of his helmet and snapping off after sinking deep into the boy's throat. A gasp shot out from the stands as the boy fell from his horse, blood spurting from his neck and his body convulsing violently. Several aids rushed out to tend to the boy but no sooner had they reached him had he fallen still as the grave. A stunned silence washed over all in attendance like a dense fog, none knowing quite what to say.

Alistair just sighed sipped his wine, his mood was mired as it so often was these days and his fathers presence wasn't helping. At least he had his brother, his daughter and the single combat competition to look forward to. His wife wouldn't talk him out of that.

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Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Alistair Lannister Character Portrait: Loras Edwards Character Portrait: Cassandra Lannister Character Portrait: Rosalie Lannister

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Since the first carriages had arrived the previous day, Cassandra had been in a perpetual state of bliss. There were so many people! She recognized very few of the assembled nobility, but there were also faces from Falor that were so familiar that she identified them as soon as they arrived. Still, she was far too overwhelmed to spend much time reminiscing.

She kicked her legs excitedly as Loras and Ronan raced toward each other. Each moment, her allegiance changed until Ronan was dismounted. Then, of course, she decided she liked Loras better. Imitating her mother, Cassie watched the prince rise slowly from the dust. For a while, she tried to listen in to her father's conversation. However, it soon grew tiresome, and she was far too distracted with the Captain of the Guards trotting his horse about. Enthusiastically, she clapped for him. Her youthful face screwed up into an excited grin.

"Mother! Mother, did you see that?!" she cried, bouncing in her seat for a moment. Of course her mother had, but she wanted nothing more than to join in the excited chatter that the others in the stands seemed to be lost in. Her mother failed to reply, however. Instead, Cassie found her hand suddenly being held and pulled softly as Rosalie stood. For just a moment, she looked longingly back at the others, but it wasn't worth arguing either, for then she knew she would not be allowed to attend the later festivities. "Yes, Mother."

As she passed by her father, he kissed her hand, evoking a giggle from her. "Goodbye, Father!" A few of the royals watched her leave, trotting behind her mother while waving in a very "princess-like" manner to the others. It seemed to annoy her, however, that she was unable to read her mother's emotions. Not that she had ever been good at it, but she had always assumed she was. "Why aren't we staying?" She moved a bit quicker once they were outside of the stands so that she walked beside Rosalie.

A great cry rose up in the stands they had just left, followed by absolute silence. Cassie stopped for a moment and tried to jump in place so that she would see what had happened. Her pause, however, was unexpected by her mother, so Rosalie continued to walk and unintentionally pull the girl along. "Do you suppose we've missed something exciting, Mother?!" She ran once more to catch up to her mother, nearly tripping over her dress. "Perhaps Loras has won again! Do you suppose it's hard to joust? I think I would be rather exciting, don't you?" She continued to shoot out questions, peppered with opinions, as they moved along. "Do you suppose Father will be sad without us?"

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Characters Present

Character Portrait: Celia Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Alistair Lannister Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Corianna Ulfricdottir

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To a man who had spent his entire life fighting, merely watching others pretend to fight would seem, at the least, mundane. But really, Ulfric believed they were nothing more than a mockery of real battle. Obviously, that was what they were intended for, but while the others watched in excitement, Ulfric spent his time sampling the various beverages that were being passed about. His overall lack of interest, therefore, resulted in his lack of interest when Ronan returned. He had certainly seen the young man fall from his warhorse, but had he cared? Certainly not.

He bit back a remark he nearly made in response to Ronan's comment about his horse. It wasn't worth it, though. Tensions were already running to high. Ulfric simply downed the ale in his goblet. Perhaps it appeared that he was absorbed in the match. Instead, he was absorbed in his thoughts. He heard Celia speak then, however, and smirked to himself as he heard her response. If only she had been a male. She would have been a worthy heir, one to finally modernize Ostwall.

"Of course, of course," he replied, nodding as she leaned in front of him. There was more he could have said. He could have wished her luck. Told her he loved her. He didn't though, for he was a man of very few words. His other daughter flung herself into his arms, and he pressed a kiss into her temple. Sweet Corianna, also a woman trapped in a man's world. "You look out for your sister," he called, unsure whether either heard and also unsure which was looking out for the other.

He kept himself out of the exchange between the Lannisters and Christoph Edwards. He didn't even know what he would say if asked to join. Instead, he finally looked toward his wife and his son. She had certainly grown to love him, and he was glad to see that. The boy had been torn apart with Freya's death. Even his daughters seemed to accept the young woman as a mother.

Ulfric was pulled from his thoughts by a sudden gasp to his side as blood began to spray in the field. It had happened so quickly that the king hadn't even had the chance to react or cover his wife's eyes as he ought to do. Instead, Ronan suddenly stood and pulled Genevieve up beside him. "That certainly isn't a sight for one so fair as yourself," the prince said to her as they walked past. Ulfric paid them no mind. Instead, Alistair began to speak to him, and he turned his attention to the younger king. "Oh, yes. She's always had quite a love for it. Don't know where she gets it from, of course. I've never been good with the bow." A passing servant filled his goblet, and he sipped from it thoughtfully before adding his own remark"I'm surprised to see you here rather than out on the field. Has the crown mellowed you?"




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Almost as soon as they had disappeared out of sight, Ronan drew his arms about her and planted a heated kiss on her lips. His hands, rather than holding her hand, now cupped her face as he pushed her lightly into the wall behind her. His shoulder throbbed horribly, but he continued to kiss her until they both felt obligated to pull away for breath. "I want nothing more than to take you back to my chambers," he breathed, drinking in her scent as he pressed his forehead to hers.

"It's absolutely maddening to have to sit beside you without being able to profess my love to you." Again, he kissed her passionately. "We'll have time together at the masquerade though. Father dislikes dancing." His arms wrapped around her waist for a moment, holding her close to his body.

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Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson

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Genevieve gasped, barely even catching a glimpse of the gory scene before she was tugged off. She played it up even more, covering her eyes and looking as if she would faint as Ronan lead her away. The girl watched as her husband didn't bother to comment on his sons actions, sighing with relief to herself. She knew that he was completely oblivious to their relationship, but she still worried often. She was torn from her thoughts quickly as she felt the familiar warmth of Ronan's lips and his rough hands on her cheeks. The queen smiled into his lips, wrapping her slender arms tightly around his strong neck and giving a quiet breathy moan. His words made her flush scarlet as she squirmed between him and the wall, she wanted to mention that they really should go make sure his shoulder wasn't injured too badly but knew he would brush it off anyway.

Genevieve listened bashfully to his words of love, happily returning his kisses as they came. "Believe me, I suffer as much as you do. I wish for nothing more than to just show my feelings for you without fear of being caught..." She rested her head on his shoulder as he held her. "Ronan, please we should make sure your shoulder isn't badly wounded." She frowned and pulled her head back, gently touching his shoulder. "At least let me see how bad it is.." She pouted her lips and lifted her eyebrows pitifully, knowing that she could easily get her way by toying with him, even though he was fully aware she was doing it.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Celia Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Alistair Lannister Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson

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As she rested her head against his shoulder, he gently kissed at her exposed neck. Oh, he could have stayed there for ages with her. Someone, however, was bound to come across them eventually. There was simply no privacy here. It was as if the walls themselves had eyes. "One day, my love," he cooed. "When my father is no longer, when I have taken the throne, you and I shall rule, and we shall be able to love each other as we ought to be able to."

When she pulled away, he gave a soft sound of protest. "It's just bruised, nothing more," he replied. Still, he found it difficult to completely ignore her. Ronan unbuttoned his doublet carefully before pushing the loose-fitting undershirt aside. "See?" he said softly, smiling back at her. "Hardly can be called a wound." He rebuttoned the doublet. "Perhaps it would be appreciated if you came to check on my shoulder after the masquerade. No one will be able to bother us." Still smirking, he placed one more kiss against her lips.







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A smile tugged at his mouth as Alistair replied. Oh, how he had longed for someone to understand the truth behind war. Ronan tried, sometimes, to understand what Ulfric had been through. There simply wasn't a way for one to understand if they had never been through it themselves. To watch one's friends perish before their eyes, to feel the blood pump through your body. It was a sensation that simply could not be explained. "You are most certainly a man after my own heart, Alistair Lannister," he remarked.

"I certainly respect those who can wield a bow, but nothing is better than a sword in one's hand." He laughed to himself and shook his head almost in tandem with Alistair. He shook it, however, as if shaking off the memories that seemed to haunt his every thought.

"Amen to that. The bowman needs not run into the fray. Instead, he stands about on a peek while his comrades fall. And who returns as a hero? Certainly not the dead swordsmen."

He listened, suddenly growing solemn, as the king explained his predicament. "Neither method seems too fair. The politicians are slimy creatures, those who can not be trusted. Us warriors...well, what do we know about ruling a nation?" At least, he mused, Alistair had noble connections. Still, he wouldn't allow that to influence his opinion of the man. They may have come from different walks of life, but Alistair was not a bad man. Through war, all different sorts of men were united.

He raised his own, refilled goblet then. "To our crowns,"
he agreed before drinking to said toast. It was then that he looked down on to the field to see Celia competing. A smile crossed his face as it smacked the bullseye at 500 yards. Ulfric had to set his goblet down so that he could clap for her.

When he finally picked his goblet up again, he looked far more somber, and his brow wrinkled in, perhaps, concern before he looked toward Alistair again. "These lords around us, they do not understand what war is, what it does to a man. It is as if we are different animals entirely, and I often feel that ours is the dying species, Alistair."

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Characters Present

Character Portrait: Celia Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Christoph Edwards Character Portrait: Renly Arryn Character Portrait: Alistair Lannister Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Corianna Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Annabelle Waldorf Character Portrait: Loras Edwards Character Portrait: Cassandra Lannister Character Portrait: Rosalie Lannister Character Portrait: Priscilla Edwards Character Portrait: Lorelle de Croismare Character Portrait: Lucas Navigne Character Portrait: Nicholas Brigham Character Portrait: Tyrion Lannister Character Portrait: Elanor Lannister

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OOC: "Here ye here ye! Come one come all. The good ole' Royal family Lannister of Tibera has put forth their 4th annual Masquerade ball at dusk. So, ladies and gents grab your masks and prepare to see identities be revealed.."

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Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson

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Ulfric looked truly and utterly out of place in the midst of the masquerade. Following some unspoken custom, he had made it his priority to dance with Genevieve for the first song. Unfortunately, he had never been a talented dancer. He moved about in a cumbrous way, most likely stepping once of twice on her trip and perhaps tripping over them more than that. In reality, he hadn't paid attention to the dance. Even though he was not a fan of the dances, he certainly was not that crude. No. Instead, he pondered his life for a moment. It seemed to him that he had grown more philosophical as the years went on. Perhaps that was what happened to one who had a kingdom to preside over, who had to make severe decisions.

His conversation with Alistair seemed to come back to haunt him. For a moment, he felt much like a caged bear, trained and dressed to entertain the wealthy humans who stood around him. He was a warrior, not a king. His eyes darted about behind his mask, and it caused him to nearly lead Genevieve into a nearby couple. The song ended then, however, and he quickly blinked his eyes as if focusing them. Lightly, he gripped her hand in his and raised the pale flesh to his lips. "If you will pardon me now, my love..." he said, cutting himself off slowly. "Sitting down all day made my legs a bit stiff. I'll be at our table if you...want to dance again." He almost didn't dare offer to dance again, but that was a loving thing to do, no?

Occasionally, it pained him to be unable to provide for Genevieve the way he had hoped he had provided for Freya. Still, she seemed happy enough. She seemed to have found a friend in each of his children, a thing he had certainly worried about when she first arrived. In fact, he had highly doubted she would be as friendly with any of them, especially Ronan, as she was now. But Ronan was an enigma, and Ulfric knew there was little point in analyzing it. He smiled quickly at Genevieve, but it was easy to tell it was partially forced.

He retreated to the head table where Alistair had promised to place him and his family. He was the only soul at the table until a servant gave him a goblet of wine. He would have certainly preferred ale or beer, something to remind him of home in the midst of the festivities. Still, the wine was good enough. Anything to ease his anxiety.

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Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Corianna Ulfricdottir

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Since his father had taken the opportunity to dance first with Genevieve, Ronan was left alone. Or, at least, he had been left alone until he came across Corianna. It had been quite some time since he'd had a chance to speak with his younger sister. A smile crossed his features as he approached her and crouched slightly. "May I have this dance, my lady?" She almost didn't manage to get a response out before he took her hand and led her out on to the floor behind him. Quickly, Ronan adjusted his mask. There was a height difference of about ten inches between the two siblings, but once they began to dance together, it was easily disregarded. His gaze moved about for a bit before he finally looked back at Cori.

"You look like Mother tonight," he remarked, smiling down at her. "You'll soon have every man in Ostwall, and perhaps further, vying for your hand." He laughed to himself before spinning her about. "But you probably won't want to have anything to do with them." They spun together now, and he lifted her briefly off of the floor so that the spin moved more smoothly.

The song slowly came to an end, and Ronan kissed her hand properly before they parted. Looking up now, he could see Ulfric doing the same to Genevieve. The older man then turned and moved toward the table, leaving her available for a dance."Stay out of trouble, Cori," he called over his shoulder as he left her. "And do leave some room in your busy schedule for another dance with your big brother."

He approached Genevieve from behind and leaned over her shoulder slowly. The urge to kiss at her neck nearly overwhelmed him, for the perfume she had applied earlier that evening was intoxicating. Ronan couldn't, of course. Not here at least. "Care to dance?" he asked, pitching his voice just above the music. When she turned to face him, he was already prepared to take her hand in his while placing his other hand on her waist.

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Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson

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Genevieve smiled through the entire disastrous dance with her husband, properly - although reluctantly- playing her part for Ronan despite how much she just wanted the bloody deed to be done. But she knew there was still plenty of waiting and acting to still be done. She was thankful for her eyes beneath her mask feigning happiness, even though she knew Ulfric wasn't smart enough to be able to tell her faux emotions from the real. As Ulfric excused himself and walked off, she waved with a smile and sighed in disappointment once he had left. She lifted her head to peer over the crowd, searching for Ronan until she felt a calming warmth behind her. Her face lit up with joy and she giggled at his query, turning and instantly being pulled into the next dance.

"Of course." She purred, placing a hand lightly on his shoulder as if it wer almost hovering, staring at him beneath hooded eyes. "You look so handsome tonight." She stated playfully, making it still sound like something a mother would say to her some from an outside view. It was so much more relaxing to be close to Ronan, it took much more effort than it should to remain calm without him near. But, when she was with him all of her problems seemed to melt away. It was funny though, because when she was with him she actually had more trouble than ever. There was the danger of being caught, and of their plans falling through, and others catching on to their romance. Genevieve pushed the thoughts from her mind, moving her hand to the meeting of Ronan's neck and his shoulder, running her thumb along his jaw slowly.

"Don't you think that we should make sure your shoulder isn't hurt too badly?" She inquired, lifting an eyebrow as she placed her hand back over it and frowned with concern.

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Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson

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"And you look absolutely gorgeous," he replied, not worrying to change the pitch of his voice. He doubted anyone would be listening either way. What had first drawn him to her, he could not say. Perhaps he would never be able to say. But he loved her, and that certainly was enough for him. If he had a calming effect on her, then she utterly placated him. Around her, he was, put simply, not himself. He was loving, perhaps, and he showed a side of him that easily would not have existed without her presence.

Ronan leaned slightly into her touch, a smile beginning to spread across his lips as he did so. He could have kissed her in that moment, taken her in his arms and embraced her not as a mother but as a lover. Society, however, dictated that one ought not to do such things to a married woman. More importantly, a woman married to oneโ€™s father. Society, however, had no jurisdiction behind closed doors. At least in his mind it did not.

โ€Itโ€™s feeling a bit better...but perhaps we truly should look at it,โ€ he said, trying to fight back a smirk but ultimately failing. Quickly, he gripped her hand and started to weave through the crowd toward the hall. Others would walk through the hallways though. In all honesty, the only place they could truly be alone would be his room.

The walk there was perhaps the longest one of his life. In reality, it took perhaps a minute or so. When they were finally behind closed doors, he pulled her up against himself quickly, eagerly. Emotion washed over him as he kissed her heatedly, far more so than he had earlier that day, for now they were alone. One arm wrapped around her waist, and the other snaked up her back, cradling her head. He paused for a bit, leaning his forehead against hers.

"I would murder that fool right now to be able to kiss you like this in public," he breathed. A soft chuckle escaped through his lips afterwards. It certainly wasn't a lie. In fact, he'd been quickly growing more and more sick of his father. He only needed to find a perfect moment to strike. In the mean time, however, he kissed her again with the smirk still on his lips.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Celia Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Alistair Lannister Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Corianna Ulfricdottir

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Ulfric looked up slowly from the goblet of ale he was nursing. He couldn't remember how many this made, but it didn't matter now. Either way, he knew how to hold his alcohol. These parties tended to upset him, sending him into what could be called a temporary depression. These days, however, this depression tended to drag out. He thought back to his conversation with Alistair. All of these fake kings. Fake nobles. They failed to understand what true leadership took. With experience in combat, how is one supposed to know how to truly lead others? They simply don't.

No, he had never been a benevolent leader, but that's not what Ostwall had needed. Ostwall needed a figure to hold together various clans of nearly-wild men. In that respect, hopefully, he would be viewed as a success.

Thinking of Alistair caused him to wonder where the King of Seabel had gotten to. Years at these gatherings had told him that Alistair would simply be lurking about on the sides, without a want to dance. Ulfric had assumed the younger monarch would have joined him by now, having made him a guest at his own table, but he was nowhere to be seen until he looked toward the throng of dancers again. A sense of betrayal struck him then. Alistair had claimed to be one of Ulfric's "kind", the warriors who had been made into kings. But he danced with an elegance that Ulfric had never known.

At the same time, however, he could remember dancing with Freya back when she had lived. He could remember the smiles and exchanged laughs as he trampled over her feet. Perhaps Alistair was still a warrior. Perhaps he still had some fight left in him. Ulfric certainly hoped so. This realm could not survive on just one warrior monarch.

Another coupled caught his eye this time: Ronan and Genevieve. Whereas she had not so much as smiled when she danced with Ulfric, Genevieve now beamed up at Ronan in a way quite similar to how Freya had beamed up at Ulfric. His jaw tightened. No. He clasped his hands together before him and pressed his lips against the knuckles. It couldn't be. But it only made sense. It explained the long periods of time they had spent in the gardens, the nights she had left him to wander about. But he was not angry at her. He couldn't be when he failed to provide for her what she deserved: a husband her age. No, it was Ronan's fault.

But Celia joined them then, and he was torn from his thoughts as he listened to his daughters talk amongst themselves. Celia's wisdom was something that, even almost twenty years after her birth, continued to shock him. It was something he had never possessed, had never been able to possess, and it gave him hope. Again, he wished he could name her his successor, for Ronan certainly did not possess her skill.

"Aye," he said softly, entering their conversation without being asked to. "But at these gatherings, people often replace those masks they wear everyday with ones that are more truthful."
He was surprised at this remark, but perhaps it did contain some truth, for people often believed the presence of a physical mask provided them protection from their actions, however despicable they were.

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Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson

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Genevieve didn't even bother to see if the old man was watching as Ronan pulled her off so the two could be alone together. She couldn't prevent herself from giggling uncontrollably as they neared his room, enthusiastically wrapping her arms around him and returning the passionate kiss. As his arms snaked around her body, she quickly took the opportunity to toss her mask aside and let her hair down, the curls falling down around her shoulders. A small sigh of happiness escaped her as the two sat in one anotherโ€™s embrace.

Ronan spoke, but it was clear to see from the outside he didnโ€™t want to think of such things now and so he pushed them aside by using Genevieveโ€™s lips as the perfect distraction. It would be stupid to say that Genevieve didnโ€™t want to focus just on her lover right now either, but if they could strategize, why not try and give him some small advice? Reluctantly, she pushed Ronan back for a moment. โ€œWhy not just kill him as soon as we can then..?โ€ She murmured, her brow knitting. โ€œIsnโ€™t there a hunt tomorrow?โ€ Her face returned back to its devilishly innocent state as she smiled. โ€œDonโ€™t you think that there would be some father-son time where youโ€™d be apart from the others?โ€ Genevieve quirked an eyebrow, prompting him as she slowly ran her fingers along the neck of his shirt.

โ€œIf we can get him out of the way thenโ€ฆโ€ She began, kissing his jaw and slipping his mask off. โ€œWhy wait?โ€ Her cat like eyes gleamed mischievously as she stepped forward, moving both of them closer to the bed. โ€œHm?โ€

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Guy Priestas Character Portrait: Simon Priestas

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Her hair, now cascading down her shoulders, was far easier for him to weave his fingers through. As one hand continued to stay wrapped about her waist, he ran his other hand's fingers through her golden hair. Ronan's lips seemed to subconsciously yearn for her as she pushed him back for a moment, for they remained slightly puckered.

She was, quite honestly, quite brilliant. Yes, he was intelligent, but Genevieve had a certain cat-like slyness about her that Ronan often failed to possess. But he was convincing, a man who could easily talk his way out of the deepest pits. And that was why they would easily be able to kill Ulfric.

"It's perfect," he breathed, grinning like a small child might grin having been presented with a long-awaited gift. And to Ronan, that was precisely what it was. He had awaited this moment for too long now. Two years, perhaps, Ulfric had lived alongside the man who plotted his murder. And the old man thought nothing of it. "It's exactly what we've waited for, my darling." She may have felt the quick jerk of a laugh he gave while kissing his jaw.

There was a moment where he merely looked down at her, absolutely captivated by the moment. By her beauty. By her plan. By the justice that he would serve. It was a long-awaited justice, one he knew would be incomparably sweet to him. In the next moment, he had picked her up in his arms and swung her about for a heartbeat in a loving embrace.

And then he released her on the bed and followed her down on to the plush covers, his lips connecting with hers once more as the ignorant old fool went about his business without, as far as Ronan knew, any knowledge of what was going on behind the closed doors of the bedroom.








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The fool was once more lost in his thoughts, far too overwhelmed by what he had seen or what he had thought he had seen. He could only pray to the Gods that it was the latter. He needed someone to turn to. Freya. But she was dead, and she would remain dead. He had never been close enough with his children to confide in them, something he slowly, in this moment, began to regret.

But there was a voice to his side, and once more he was pulled out of his reverie. He had forgotten about the hunt, quite honestly. It was a welcome escape from the formality of the rest of the celebration. And it would provide a moment, he prayed, to confront Ronan about his concerns. "It would be rude to not attend, Guy," he replied. "It is a sacrifice I am certain you and Simon can make for the day."

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Characters Present

Character Portrait: Celia Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Genevieve Hansdottir Character Portrait: Christoph Edwards Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Tyrion Lannister Character Portrait: Evelyne Spyre

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The hunt had been delayed following a rain storm that had lasted far longer than anyone had truly expected. The sky, however, had reverted to a light blue and the sun had begun to show itself a little after noon. The only sign that remained of said rainfall was the softness of the ground beneath the hooves of horses and the feet of nobles. Now, however, the sky was once more graying. Though there was still a substantial number of royals and nobles atop horses, preparing for the hunt, others had chosen to stay beneath tents that had been pitched over ornate carpets.

One such noble was Christoph. He had had every intention to join the hunt that day, but frankly, he cared little for riding about in such dismal conditions. Instead, he had merely ridden his horse out to the site of the tents to avoid wetting his shoes as most nobles chose to. Behind him, his dogs had trailed, and presently, they sat by his feet and watched the unknown people milling about under the tents. Christoph had taken a seat, as had quite a few of the nobles who were not busy mounting horses.

To his left sat Evelyne, for he truly hadn't wanted to leave anyone in his room without the dogs there to guard his belongings. Besides, she was entertaining company to keep in the midst of what was often dull conversation. Occasionally, he would whisper hushed remarks about the various nobles in her ear. Currently, he noticed a man who far too old to walk, let alone ride a horse, attempting to mount a well-bred stallion. Christoph's lips twitched as he leaned toward Evelyne. "I do hope someone puts me out of my misery if I'm ever that daft," he remarked.

He looked about for another victim, and his eyes fell upon Tyrion, the Imp. He stopped himself, however, before saying anything to Evelyne, for as much as he wished to say something about him, he knew Tyrion was a good ally to keep. "How are you on this fine day, Lord Tyrion?" he asked, cocking his head subtly. "Will you be joining the hunt?"








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Alongside the other nobles, Ronan finished adjusting the saddle on his ebony warhorse. The stallion fidgeted beneath unfamiliar saddlebags that, in turn, hit against his flanks with more fervor. He gripped the saddle and lifted himself on to the horse just as a rain drop fell on to the crown of his head. The rain, however, had never bothered him much either way. There was still a dull throb in his shoulder, and it brought about a wince as he yanked himself upwards. Once he had settled on the saddle, he gathered up the reins and looked about.

Ulfric, a little ways off, hefted himself into the saddle of his dun mare. She was much older than most of the horses gathered about, but she was a loyal mount. He'd ridden her for years now, since he had taken the throne, and not once had she failed him. As he settled himself on the saddle, he looked about and met Ronan's gaze. They would have to speak, for now Ulfric found it difficult to tell what was true anymore.

Clicking his tongue once, he walked his horse towards Ronan and then stopped so that their horses were only a few inches apart. "I was wondering if perhaps you would be willing to split from the group with me and hunt on our own," he said, reciting the line he had practiced that morning. "It'll be difficult to hunt with so many in the party."

Ronan blinked for a moment, then two, as he tried to determine how to proceed. That wasn't how it was supposed to happen. Nevertheless, he would work with it. He had to. "Of course, father," he replied, nodding to Ulfric. His father turned the mare around and began to move her past the camp and towards the woods. With a final glance over his shoulder, he caught Celia's gaze. "Look out for you sister, Celia," he called before kicking his horse into a canter.

Ronan looked toward his sister simply because Ulfric had mentioned her, but then he looked to Genevieve. For a moment, he simply watched her, waiting for something and then he nodded once to her before following Ulfric at a similar pace.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Celia Ulfricdottir Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Guy Priestas Character Portrait: Simon Priestas

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Simon had gone to bed rather late for whatever reason. Guy had stayed downstairs dancing the night away with various women and eventually taking a break before resuming his dancing. How Guy was a wonderful dancer, yet horrible sympathizer was beyond Simon. Simon had sat back and enjoyed his book up until a women had asked him to dance for whatever reason and he was forced to stand and do a dance with her, then the next lady who asked, then the next one. Simon was almost positive the ladies had just mixed him and Guy up.

ImageNow Simon stood anxiously next to his horse, carefully adjusting the saddle while waiting for his brother to show up. Simon had been told by Guy what Ulfric said, yet he wasn't even here himself yet. Soon the hunt would begin and his brother hadn't even showed up to participate in activities with those who were staying behind. Groaning, Simon mounted his horse. The squire that stood nearby with Guy's horse looking around, not anxious, just curious as to where the noble had gotten.

Simon looked up to see his uncle and his cousin converse nearby before leaving. Ulfric called something to Celia that made Simon furrow his brow, confused as to why Ulfric would say something along those lines. Simon considered joining them, but figured it wouldn't be too good of an idea. He was still sure that Guy would come forth and show himself with a rumpled look to him and a large smile on his face. Everyone else had arrived it appeared. Guy was literally the last man to show up, if you thought a seventeen year old as a man. If a fifteen year old was a king, why not consider a seventeen year old a man?

"Guy, where are you?" Simon mutters under his breath as he turns his horse in a circle, trying to spot his brother from the castle in the distance. Perhaps he had just slept in too much and was still sleeping. That's what he'd been telling himself for the past hour as he had gone through the motions of preparing for the hunt without his brother. Simon did hope that their uncle didn't get mad at Guy. It had been rather clear.

Simon saw a familiar face in the crowd and smiled slightly upon seeing the squire assisting him during their stay at the castle approach. He didn't look too happy about his news. "Sir, your brother, he told me to tell you he will meet you in the woods," The squire states, bending over to catch his breath. Simon groaned softly again. What was Guy up to? He saw a few people getting ready to begin and followed them, hoping Guy would be true to his word, Simon took off on the hunt with a few others, bow in hand.

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Guy stood from his seat he had taken to stare at the partially blank canvas. The rain had fallen causing a spider web outside on his balcony to have drops of rain running along the strands. He had resigned himself to capture the beautiful image before it dried or the spider came to tear it down. He didn't know what he'd do if the spider showed up, perhaps kill it since he didn't like spiders.

ImageGuy was currently trying to figure out how to start. Should he paint the web starting with the droplets or the web itself? And how would he capture the web itself when it took him adjusting his view of the web in order to see the delicate strands. He sighed and decided it was time for a break. He had set everything up, so his break wasn't done after entirely nothing, just mostly nothing. He looked out the window, beyond the web to see the hunt commencing.

He didn't have any plans on joining his brother. Sure he had said he'd join, and his uncle had told him to join, but that didn't mean he wanted to, or would. Perhaps someone other than his brother and cousins would try to defend him. It wasn't like he was entirely alone in the world, just mostly, like his preparation of the painting. His brother would be mad, and possibly ignore Guy for a day or two, then he would forgive Guy and the two would love each other again and resume studying and practicing together in their spare time.

Guy resumed staring at the canvas before picking up the paintbrush nearby and gently beginning the work, deciding it best to begin with the web itself, then add the water droplets on as if they were gently placed there by himself, with his own fingers, not his paintbrush. Guy watched with a smile as his web began to take shape. He was pretty sure his shirt wouldn't ever be clean again thanks to him using it for a rag rather than an actual rag.

Guy looked at what he had so far and smiled. On the canvas sat a well put together web that didn't look exactly the way he wanted it to, but close enough. Nothing he ever painted looked exactly as he wanted it to, it just wasn't possible considering he couldn't capture every single aspect. He always saw the painting as incomplete yet everyone else who had seen his work, his brother and servants, thought they looked identical to the real life model. In Guy's eyes however, they looked like trash and he wished he could just dump each and everyone of them. He would have had it not been for his not wanting to waste the precious paint and canvas.

Guy slowly set his brush down and moved to lay on his bed before remembering his shirt and instead moving to lean against the door frame yet again. If he could, he'd trap his brother in here and let him read and study to his heat's content while Guy painted. He didn't really love anyone in a romantic way, and sometimes wished he did, but shook his head, pushing the hopeful thoughts away. He couldn't, not yet, not until his brother would finally find someone worth loving and love her and then, well, not consider any other ladies at all.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Nicholas Brigham

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"Little by little, the old world crumbled,
and not once did the king imagine that
some of the pieces might fall on him."

โ€• Jennifer Donnelly

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A chamber maid shook Ren roughly from pleasant dreams and wordlessly led him out of the castle. He stumbled into the mid morning chill, groggy from sleep, to find his horse saddled and the king already mounted. There was nothing to do but rub the sleep from his eyes, dress, and mount up. They had a hunt to set out on and the king waited for no man.

The royals set the pace, and driving his black destrier hard, Ren galloped along beside them, trying his best to keep up. He called out a question as they rode, but the wind blew his words away, and Ulfric did not hear him. After that Renly rode in silence. The sun, high in the sky, sent fingers of light through the pale white mist left behind by an earlier morning rain. He looked to his prince, who rode closely with his father and frowned, an uneasy feeling settling in in the pit of his stomach. Sometimes it seemed Ronan was as cold as a Northern winter and sharp as a slap from an old, angry drunkard, as hard as Ostwall armor and wicked as the jokes young boys used to whisper to each other during mass. The murky day seemed foreboding and Renly couldn't quite pinpoint why. He quelled his anxiety by keeping his head on a swivel, eyes searching for a familiar dark swatch of hair and a set of warm brown eyes. Would his Nicholas be out on the hunt, carrying some knight or king's pack supplies and spare weaponry like Ren? Or was he back at the castle all snug and warm, still tucked in his bed or perhaps having a late breakfast or an early lunch?

No matter how tired Renly was now, dragging on with this exercise deprived of a long sleep, he could not be made to regret his late night escapade to the garden. He was a romantic, and he was consumed with hope though little more had carried on save a night of conversation and a kiss between strangers. He was soon snapped out of his reverie and his search when the King and Prince pulled away from the group to set off on their own. He hesitated in his saddle, unsure if he should follow. If they wanted to be in each other confidences then he'd be in trouble for taking off after them; were they stalking after prey, they'd be furious he wasn't there to retrieve the kill. He mulled over his options carefully and opted to trail in their general direction within earshot but out of sight. If they called for him, he'd hear them; but if their voice never reached above a conversational volume, their exchange would remain secret.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Renly Arryn Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson

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A silence had fallen between father and son as they rode through the trees at a brisk trot. Both knew why they were there, alone, but neither wanted to be the first to say something. It was Ronan who finally broke the silence with a cough followed by a few words. "Why are we out here? Alone?" Ulfric turned his upper body so that he faced Ronan for a moment. His lips parted, but they shut again as he faced forward.

"I thought we ought to spend time together," Ulfric lied. It rolled off his tongue with uncharacteristic ease. Ronan simply nodded, unsure whether he ought to believe the statement or not. Ten years ago, the first time he had been allowed to hunt with the adults, Ufric had taken the boy along with the others. Was he worried about their commotion scaring the game away, or was their something else he had in mind?

Ulfric's knees had been aching relentlessly for the past few hours, and now the mixture of low air pressure and riding made the ache nearly unbearable. He cleared his throat once. "I think we ought to dismount. The horses will spook anything around here."

"Agreed," Ronan replied, uncharacteristically soft spoken. His jaw tightened slightly as he adjusted his quiver and bow which were strung across his back. Both men dismounted in tandem, but Ulfric carried no weapons with him. In that moment, Ronan knew they were not simply out there to hunt. They walked a few paces before Ronan voiced his concerns. "Why are we really here, Father?"

He knew he could no longer hide from it, no longer pretend it was not happening. Ulfric turned to face his son, a expression of mixed disgust and disbelief plastered across his countenance. "How long have you loved her?"

His gut churned violently, but Ronan knew he couldn't reveal anything now. Not when he was this close. "Who, Father?" he replied, head tilting to the side to give him a boyish look despite his intimidating stature. He hardly had time to react before his father's hand connected with his cheek, causing Ronan's head to turn with the impact.

"You damn well know who I mean, boy," he snarled. "Do you think me blind? Daft?!" His face contorted with anger as he reached forward and gripped Ronan by the front of his doublet. "No son of mine would think this to be acceptable behavior. You are to rule a kingdom one day, and a king simply can not be as stupid as you are, boy." With a quick movement, Ulfric jerked him to the side and stormed past.

Ronan stood there for a moment, his hand to his reddening cheek, but as rage built within him, he reached into his quiver and pulled out not an arrow, but the tusk of a boar. He gripped it tightly by the base as he had when he pulled it from the trophy that hung over his room's fireplace last night. He would show him. He would show him who was weak, who was unfit to rule. He inhaled and then exhaled slowly before running up behind his father.

The King looked back to face the crunching of leaves and turned into the tip of the tusk. His breath caught as the boar's tusk cut through his flesh. Ronan gave it a sharp twist, tearing through tissue, and then he pulled it free. The pain that consumed his body was unlike any he had felt in battle. His gut seemed to burn as blood soaked through his doublet. The two stood for a moment in shock, Ulfric because he simply couldn't believe what had happened and Ronan because he couldn't believe he had done it. The dying King flung himself at Ronan, knocking the unprepared Prince to the forest floor as he grappled for the tusk.

For just a moment, Ulfric had the tusk in hand, and he brought it across Ronan's cheek, cutting the left side of his face. He was no match for his son, however, and the boy soon had the King on his back and the tusk through his chest. Red bubbled on Ulfric's lips, and he sputtered for air as his lungs filled with blood. "Do you wish to know the truth, old man?" he taunted, knowing the blood had filled his throat. "She carries my child, not yours." He smirked wickedly as he pulled the tusk again from his father's neck. "Are you proud of me, Father? I took the throne as you did, killed the King as you did."

Ulfric struggled feebly beneath his son, shaking his head slightly. He swallowed the blood that had gathered in his mouth, fighting to choke out final words. "...no son of mine.." he managed to rasp, but then the blood had filled his respiratory system again, literally drowning him in his own fluid as he continued to fight against Ronan. He knew it was futile, there was no winning this battle. In a last moment of strength, perhaps the last moment of strength he had felt in years, he spat upwards at Ronan, plastering blood to his face beside his already bleeding wound. And then he was still.




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Ronan, perched above his father and panting from the effort of holding down the man, simply knelt there for a moment. Ulfric Bjornson was no more. He was King. Genevieve was his Queen. He felt his cheek then, and his hand came away red from the blood. Good. It would look odd if he came away from this unscathed. He gathered his breath in his chest and, slowly, let lose a mournful cry.

They would come now, and so he mounted his horse, hoping to find them and lead them back to the body. The smirk fell from his face and was replaced by a look of panic and concern. As he rode, he noticed a shape moving towards him, and he pulled up on the reins once he recognized Renly. "Renly!" he cried, his entire body heaving now. "T-the King...h-he's...he's dead."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Renly Arryn Character Portrait: Simon Priestas

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ImageSimon had followed along in the hunt, not really paying attention as he thought of his brother. Where was he? Sighing, Simon raised his bow as he saw a target and fired quickly and efficiently, taking down his target. A nearby boy ran to retrieve the prize though Simon hardly felt like celebrating. He was about to turn back and just go back to the tents when he heard a horrible sort of cry.

Simon moved towards the sound, seeing his cousin, Ronan, and his half cousin, Renly. Upon hearing Ronan's decree, Simon froze, ice taking over his veins. His uncle, dead? It wasn't possible, he was such a strong man of power, not even he could be felled, right? Simon shook his head as he stared at his cousin, finally noticing the blood on his face.

"No... You... Uncle..." Simon whispers looking towards where Ronan came from but not wanting to go see the horrible sight should Ronan be telling the truth. Why wouldn't he though? His father was dead. Simon felt something break in his chest, his second father, was gone. He had to tell Guy, no he couldn't tell Guy, it would break him.

Ronan looked as heartbroken as Simon felt. Simon let his bow drop in front of him in the saddle, not allowing himself to dismount for fear his legs wouldn't hold him. "That... How?" Simon manages through his stupor, wondering how this disaster could have come to be.

Simon breathed deeply, trying to recuperate. The breath was ragged and he felt more like he was breathing in glass rather than air. He looked to his cousin, finally realizing what this meant now. It was both good and bad he guessed. Good because it wouldn't be entirely chaotic with an heir, bad because Ulfric was dead, and Ronan didn't really like Guy.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ronan Ulfricson Character Portrait: Renly Arryn Character Portrait: Ulfric Bjornson Character Portrait: Simon Priestas

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"He shed a lake of blood and murdered a king
for a cold, lonely throne."
โ€• Jayne Castel

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No sooner had Renly heard the wail, he bolted in the king and prince's direction, slapping the reign's hard and driving his heels deep into his destrier's side. The second he made it into the trees, he dismounted with a skill and ease he didn't even know he possessed, and was on the ground and running before his horse even had a moment to catch it's breath. It was then, as he rounded the bend of an oak, the sight spilled out before him like some horrible farce of a stage play with Ulfric's name freshly written on the playbill in a spattering of blood instead of ink. Renly didn't know how to react, he felt as if he were falling over himself to read the act descriptionsโ€”but there was nothing there, nothing there but a facsimile of a son's face in pain and mourning hovering over the king. Ren's knees trembled and his body shook, wracked with shock. This was the man who offered him a home and a future, a man he didn't know too well, but one that had be unfailingly kind in his own stoic and quiet sort of way.

"Renly! T-the King...h-he's...he's dead." Ronan voiced, the sound of it hollowed and empty. The young ward stumbled over to the body instinctively, his legs catching on one another and tripping him up so that he just fell short of the corpse, face biting into a hard forest floor not softened by it's blanket of dampened leaves. He scrambled forward after that and pressed a trembling set of hands to the wound, hope still alight in his big blue eyes that had a sleepless night scrawled in bruises under them and were beginning to well up with tears.

Other shouts came in rolling waves, voices crying out like bands of seagulls squawking senselessly. He recognized Simon's somewhere a midst the white noise, Ulfric's nephew. He was asking the wrong questions, How? He should of been offering to help. Ren's clothes were now black and slick with blood as he still tried to keep pressure on the injury, and he began to wonder why it was him on his knees and not the king's son, Ronan. Did no one care about saving him? Renly was in denial, trying to save that which was already gone. A lost gust of wind offended the taciturn trees like the trembling premonition of the horrible future that prowled at their heels. Everything had changed. Renly should have followed after them, this was all his fault.