A Chilly Welcome

Title: A Chilly Welcome
Time Period: July 9, 135 A.E.
Characters Appearing:

Summary: Is there anything better for a man of the north?

The days a ship comes in are always exciting ones. At the very least, it means a return of sailors to the docks of Dornie, where friends and family eagerly await; for others, it means new wares to sample or buy, and sometimes it means new faces to meet. One ship has docked, and amongst the unloading of crates and reunions of long-separated family, a stranger disembarks, mostly unnoticed.

Eyes the color of the water dart here and there among the crowded dock, but there's a lazy casualness in the way the man moves. The faint, misty drizzle, worse no doubt further out at sea, has dampened his hair and his clothing; the sky is a uniform layer of thin gray clouds that gives no sign of let up soon, but thus is the weather here — in an hour, that same sky might be blue and dotted with nothing but wispy clouds.

If a ship is in port, Luna is at the docks. Of course it's not any reason that might relate to her former trade, she's never been a dock hag and refuses to be seen as one now. Her grey dress is a bit too much for the summer heat but she doesn't let anyone see her suffer for it. The high neck and sleeves cover any scars that might have been visible with any of her summery outfits, what this one does is make her look more matronly, if it wasn't for the hair that's left flowing down her back instead of coiled in its usual style.

She looks disappointed and she is. This ship isn't the one she's been waiting for and while she's busy looking up instead of ahead, half of her body collides with that of the watery eyed man. Her eyes instantly water from pain, the injured shoulder is cupped with her good hand and the scowl she sends his way isn't short of any malice.

Caera is standing at one of the docks, staring out at the endless ocean. The docks, like most docks, are (presumably) a bit smelly, and a bit dirty, but she doesn't let that deter her, as she listens to the gentle lapping of the waves. The faint, misty drizzle doesn't seem to bother her, even as it clings to her dress and her hair. She turns, finds a convienent pillar of wood jutting out from one corner of the pier, and sits down on it, smoothing out her dress first. She closes her eyes, and listens to the sound of the water. Ah, a day without students.

When Luna collides into him, Nikolai glances back — he's usually good at weaving through crowds, but he can't see in two directions at once, as much as he might like to be able to. His brow knits as Luna reacts, and he turns to face her.

"Pardon," he says. "Are you hurt? Perhaps you should sit." His words hint at faraway places, an accent that's more from the continent than the isles. He nods to where Caera has seated herself, careful not to lay hands on Luna as he gestures. "Are you feeling well? Are you injured? I did not see you… behind me."

"Are you mad? Am I injured?!" Luna's high pitched snippy voice does indeed have pain buried in it. "Of course I'm injured… You think I enjoy holding my arm onto my body?" It's a complete exaggeration as anyone can see, her arm is in no danger of falling off.

But how can she stay angry at anyone who sounds so… continental and so… exotic. Squeezing her eyes shut, she sucks in a hissing breath and slowly pushes herself to a stand. "I'll be fine, I swear it, thank you for your concern." She bats coal dusted watery kitten eyes up at him, a bid for sympathy. "Did you come in on the ship? This one? I've never seen you about town before."

Caera opens her eyes at the sudden commotion and her gaze falls upon Luna. After all, she's the one making all the fuss. She then glances towards Nikolai. Raising a single eyebrow quizzically, she bites her lip and gets off of the wooden pillar, in case the 'injured' woman should want to sit down. "You can have my spot, if need be." she interjects

The shaggy-haired man glances at hand on arm, and lifts one shoulder — perhaps that is just what she's doing. "I beg your pardon again, miss," he says, and he turns to look at Caera as she speaks, giving her a nod of thanks.

He turns to look at the ship, a hand going to the red scarf tucked into his linen shirt. "Yes," Nikolai says in reply to Luna's questions, then turns to look beyond the docks to the roads leading to town and other places. "I have not been to this place before, this island. This is Dornie, yes?" He looks to Caera for affirmation.

Luna gives a quick glance backward at Caera, the schoolteacher and offers a tight but polite smile (to be social). She backs up one pace to allow for the line of conversation between she and the stranger to become a triangle with the redheaded woman. "I don't need to sit, thank you, it's my shoulder that hurts not my bottom." Nor is she feeling queasy. Despite belief that she might be faking her injury, the blonde woman still hasn't let loose her shoulder.

A change in topic is welcome, especially when he reveals that he is from the boat just in. "Aye, you're in Dornie, welcome. May I ask about your journey?" She's quick to get to the point. "You didn't happen to see any other ships while on the water, did you? Perhaps one whose sails were mended with almost an entire wardrobe of fancy dresses?"

Caera -withers- under that look. She doesn't try to smile back. On the contrary, she blinks for a few long moments and takes an instinctive half-step backwards - she's a softie. Stuttering for the first few syllabels, she tries to answer the man. "Y-y-yes. This i-is Dornie. And…a finer town I have not seen between here and the southern tip of Ireland. A town to be proud of."

Sails mended with dresses? One of Nikolai's brows tics up and he smirks a touch. "There was a whole fleet of galleons with underwear for sails, but not a single boat with fancy dresses, I fear, miss. It is too bad, because I always thought white was so plain a color for a ship's masts. A bit of color on the sea would be welcome after so many days with everything the same color — sky, water, water, sky." His hand gestures up, down, up, down to accompany his words.

"I have not seen that island either, miss," he tells Caera, "though I hear it is very green and beautiful like this one. As for me, I have been many places, but my heart's home is in Norway. Do you know if I have any countrymen — or women — here?"

Luna's eyebrows draw downward into a sullen frown when she feels the mirth of the stranger at her expense. She takes it out on Caera, a convenient target. "It is a town to be proud of," affirming what the teacher says but in a firmer tone. Anyone who knows the prostitute knows that this sentiment is really just a recent thing. She's spent nearly her entire life scheming of ways to get away.

Turning back to Nikolai, the blonde finally lets go of her shoulder to put out a hand in introduction. Conveniently, it's the hand that she was using to keep herself together, the other still hangs limp at her side. "My name is Luna Owens, and I'm sure Caera will be happy to show you to the Ross Manor to make your acquaintance with Jorn Wartooth. He's the resident Norseman…" she narrows her eyes at the traveler and retracts her hand before a shake can be made, even if it is with the wrong hand. "You're not here to plunder our fine town, are you?"

Caera nods her head in agreement. "Yes, Ross Manor is the place to look. They fund the school I teach at, and the town electrical powerplant." She is silent a moment, to let the words sink in. They impress -her- at least. "They have a bodyguard from the region. I'm afraid I'm not exactly up on the gossip, however, so I can't tell you if there is anyone else. He might know more."

Nikolai's hand turns palm up and he glances down on it, then up at Luna with a smirk. "Only if I find anything worth plundering, miss," he says before turning to listen to Caera. If he's impressed, he does not show it. "Thank you for the information. I will beg out of an escort to this manor," there's an upward lilt of the word as if he's unsure of that one, "for today. I am in need of more than a Norseman's conversation, being so long at sea."

He bows his head to each. "Thank you for the information."

"Pray that you don't find anything you deem valuable enough, the lawmen of Dornie don't take kindly to it." While she is now scarred and hideous looking, there are other women in the town that might rival the beauty she once had. Maybe. Luna hasn't met one yet. Not willing to suffer through a third slight, the blonde woman turns her attention to the boat and the cargo being offloaded.

It seems that both man and woman have been summarily dismissed.

Caera bows her head to the other two, and heads on her way. Not towards where she was sitting - back in the direction of the school. She's more comfortable there, anyways.