Nasrin, NPC Alankar


A calculated reunion.


It is the thirty-seventh day of Summer and 110 degrees. Overnight, the temperatures plummet to a reasonable heat. Sand coats everything.



OOC Date 29 Jul 2018 04:00



“Come to poke the feline in his cage?”



What was once nigh-obsolete has been wrought anew in understated radiance: Igen Weyr's guardhouse has always been a weathered thing, but now the two-storied building shines with a little more gloss than the dilapidation of yore. Gutted and refit with a brighter interior, new wood lends itself to a staircase upward to the guard quarters and to long, functionally-assertive desks that sweep behind the main focus of the room. Determinedly upright, the entrance desk allows the one on shift full sight of the room, and requires all comers to submit in lowered-height submission against the glory of the rough-shined skybroom.

For the second time Alankar found himself within Igen’s brig and he was getting bored with their displays of mediocre justice. The first time he was angry at the very suggestion he was counterfeiting marks, holding his grievances in until he was within their walls of authority. Then they saw things his way, or whatever, and let him go, left him alone for thirty months. This was getting ridiculous.

In the short span of Turns since she began anonymously incriminating her father to the guards, there was a spectrum of reaction from the authorities: reluctance, partial acquiescence, street conversations, some even found for him excuses, especially with no direct accuser.

When Nasrin heard her father was again being detained, she burned her forearm on a kitchen cauldron. Hardly careless, the thread of simple news expanded into a bolt of possibilities. She persisted with her tasks helping to organize noon-meal, allowing her mind to wander as many do when faced with mundane tasks. Answering people and giving instruction stole time away from plotting, until Rajakhelath, using the brittle roll of coal fed into a furnace, prompted her to eat.

And despite urges to rush to him, there was the initiative to wait. A day. Two. The third day Threadfall presented over Katz Field so time sped by that day.

On the fourth day, still learning Alankar was in custody, Nasrin donned riding leathers and organized a free-flowing grey robe over them, rejected a belt, and asked a bluerider to see her to the barracks. She dismissed him upon reaching her destination, entered, and stated she wished to see her father. The sergeant on duty allowed the goldrider in with a furrowed brow.

Having heard voices, what he thought was a woman’s, Alankar’s ears pricked and he sat up a little straighter. He pulled his visions from the meal his family would be having now, those imported currants with lamb must be, and saw a dark cloud headed his way. The walk style wasn’t terribly telling to him, but when the shadows peeled off her face, Alankar recognized his eldest. Nasrin.

“Hello, girl,” he bought time by studying her face, wondering about why she came. His wife’s father had eyes about that shade of blue, kind of metallic in their ability to hold either warmth or cold. “Come to poke the feline in his cage?” As he stood, there was the realization her height wasn’t far from his.

Nasrin looked around the brig before she did her father, eyeing the distance between them and the guards. She walked back, told the guards she was having some ‘time’ with the detained, and pressed the door until it shut. No hard clicks.

His hair was almost pure white now, but then it slowly starting converting when she was younger. There was disdain in his voice, yes, but equal parts distress. He may not get out of this room again as easily as before. Posing a brand new conversation, “are they treating you well?” Standing just in front of the cell, Nasrin’s hands came to link in front. A very clinical expression bordered on frost-loving.

As the last movement ceased in his daughter’s robes, Alankar took a step closer that rubbed starkly against the floor. “Well enough. They aren’t throwing rocks if that’s what you’re getting at.” He didn’t laugh at his own humor, instead communicating, “you look like your grandmother— my mother. She had that look of wanting to bite anyone who impeded her. Call it a compliment, little one.”

His intentions unclear, Nasrin slowed down her rate of blinking, devoured that ‘compliment’ to taste it later. Time being precious, she moved the exchange along as her pulse started to quicken. “Mother and Aleor?” The streambed coolness of her voice almost stumbled in pitch when asking about her brother, who was but a toddler when last she saw him.

“Your mother's just fine. Aleor’s six now, and spending an awful lot of time with Kanjen and his whirlwind of cousins, Emerda’s husband.” Realizing their wedding happened after Nasrin was absorbed by the Weyr, some connection is provided. “And he received every birthday present you sent him.”

Grabbing the lapels of his open vest, each hand clung there. “Look,” eyes lowered and he appeared vulnerable. “We both know what the guards are holding me here for. I’ve admitted to nothing, brushed most of them off but they have some evidence, ‘sworn oaths’, who knows.” He comes closer, father to his own blood.

“You, in your position, could speak on my behalf.” Black eyes meet Nasrin’s, his mouth anxiously restless. “Look at it this way, does the Weyr really want to see its junior weyrwoman dragged down by paltry back alley indecencies?” Slower, the cadence of his voice became tar-like. “No, they don’t need scandals in addition to Threadfall and managing the territories. Especially,” looking back at the door, “if I tell them your hand did most of the simulating— and Nasrin I really don’t want to have to play that element.” Looking back toward his visitor, he had his old hauteur back.

Cold fire gleamed within her eyes as this sort of blackmail fledged and flew openly about the room. That people were tools to her father was no shocker, nor was his trait uncommon within the social strata of the bazaar. Nasrin started to run various alternatives in her head, forming links like the domino game she often enjoyed. Stupid man. That the Weyr would reprimand her for crime committed as a child within her own household was folly. And disgrace is not such a burden, not what he thinks it is. You get used to it.

Oh, how the aggressor in her wanted to cry out to the sergeant himself and confess to everything, damn her father and his familial allies, sing the truth, sign her name, and watch their dignity burn to ash. Under the sleeve half-covering her hand, she buried her fingernails into the flesh of her wrist.

But her father was awaiting a reply and pauses provide suspicion. She looked to her feet in a gesture of complacency, hummed a little as if the guilt were getting to her. “Uncle Radyan was known to owe a lot of debts and did leave several items of his within our compound after his domicile flooded.” That could explain the paraphernalia on their property used to forge marks, and the man did owe many people. He was also conveniently dead.

That this was his daughter kindled a pulse of pride in the Steen man. “I knew you had the head for it to think of something… creative.” If the bars weren’t in place, Alankar would have maybe made the gesture to hug his eldest. “Thank you, my dear.”

There came a smile to the rider’s face, just a small signal that was as devastating as a grander gesture. That he relied on a favor of his daughter shifted the balance of power, and the bird of blackmail came to roost on her shoulder. Such a victory was a deceitful syrup to the soul both people could taste, one sweet the other bitter absinthe. No more words needed be said.

The grey robe skimmed the air as she turned. “Then our business is done.”

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