The Offspring of Riches

Title: The Offspring of Riches
Time Period: May 5, 135 A.E.
Characters Appearing:

Summary: One disaster begets another. No one can say they were not warned.

Inevitably, people hear about it. That is, if they don't simply look out sea-side facing windows and see the smoking coming up to grease the sky in grey, the glow of orange at a blistering fire. A small inferno that's been allowed to fester, and by the time tendrilling grey-white smoke has been noted, called upon, it's already begun to eat the insides out of the warehouse.

Water is in abundance, drawn from the loch by buckets and rows of hands, and most sophisticated pumps that feed directly in the loch. By the time Edmund Rowntree and Jorn Wartooth are thundering back from the castle, arcs of water are giving the air even more texture in fine mists and more direct jets. There is something uneasy about Edmund's silence as they ride and arrive, more than the usual kind, and Jorn will know; they'd been investigating the case of a break in to the armory, and a crate full of brick. Which is unremarkable in its own right, except that it was meant to be filled with explosive. But whatever started this current disaster, it was silent.

The more immediate threat of a fire summons them instead when word reaches, and it has already consumed half the warehouse, one that stored a manner of things, including fishing boats, lumber, steel, and brick, and some crates of valuables that are currently being hauled out by men brave or stupid enough to duck into the flaming building. Teams of people try to throw water onto the insatiable fire, while others are turning to the interconnection of fishing village and wetting the rooftops and walls preemptively.

Some just watch and stay out of the way, and observe the dancing of firelight on the waters.

In the water itself is Beisdean to refill the buckets to pass to the grabbing hands; he's soaking wet and shivering from the cold water, a sharp juxtaposition to the heat that pours off of the warehouse building they are trying to douse.

The tall young man looks weary; Beisdean grimaces in pain with each repetitive motion of his arms to dig the buckets through the water, filling them to the brim before passing to the waiting hands — it wasn't too many weeks ago that he was in a sling, after all, and the work here is tedious and hard after the 50th bucket-pass.

For the moment, there is a lull — no empty bucket to pass, no hands reaching for a full one, and he looks up, wet hair in his wet face, squinting at the building as if willing it to stop burning. Too bad that's not his brand of magic.

She's angry at herself for not having recognized the signs: waking up drenched in a sticky sheen of her own sweat, the flame and scarlet reds that coloured the sunrise this morning when she opened the bedroom window to greet the dawn, so rich and intense that she briefly wished she had the time to set up her easel and immortalize it.

God could not have sent Aislinn a more explicit message.

Even though it's what she knows she should be doing, it's difficult for her to stay out of the way while other people are risking their lives to salvage supplies from the burning warehouse. Her efforts to discourage them from being so reckless have been met with little to no success; she's screamed her voice raw trying to be heard over the commotion, and at only an inch or two above five feet, she hasn't been able to dissuade anyone with her physical presence.

Aislinn is too easy to shove aside, too easy to ignore, and she can only bleat for so long before resignation sets in and places her on the sidelines. Like Beisdean, her face is wet, though for different reasons entirely — its expression drawn and smudged with soot, defeated at least for the time being.

For a woman with few to no friends, Luna seems to be out visiting far too often. Today was spent away, walking, and it was hard to miss the haze in the air and the smell.

While she isn't among those stupid brave enough to go into the warehouse, she is helping in the least labor intensive manner she can. A single petticoat, torn from her body and into long strips, is sopping wet. She wears too many layers anyway. As a hint to those she passes pieces to, one of the strips is tied around her nose and mouth to help stop smoke from obscuring breath. The prostitute can't honestly remember where she heard/saw/learned it.

The tawny horse that Jorn pulls to a halt alongside Edmund is not one to usually roll her eyes and champ her teeth. Perhaps Kuu is feeding off of the chaos of the fire, rather than the fire itself- because she stamps her displeasure even when her master squeaks her to a stop. Her newly shorn mane, stiff and striped, quivers when she chews harder on the bit.

Edmund's silence is met with even more from Jorn. His eyes are on the fire, the people trying to put it out, and those that are stuck wetting homes or standing about like a flock of birds; their faces are either dirty or too cold, and the various grimaces make some hard to recognize. Jorn tugs the edge of his fur over his mouth, breathing through it while he considers the next course of action. A temporary measure. He is already eyeballing the woman passing out pieces of wet cloth- Luna?

"This isn't suspicious…" The northman's growling is muffled through the white, but not so much that Edmund won't hear him. He is the only one meant to.

Algernon arrived on foot and hasn't been here for long, layers of duster, coat and tie shed down to the waistcoat. The shirt beneath it will probably not recover, equal parts soaked in salt water and run black with soot where he's wrestled out the odd idiot or two to slip into unconsciousness on their way back out into open air.

He blends better into the mix without his hat, washed in orange with bucket in hand. Formerly — in hand. He stuffs it into someone else's grasp and winds away from the most intense heat when static warmth begins to buzz in his ears.

"Aye. Keep your eyes open," Edmund says in response, which is basically his way of agreeing with Jorn; but what even is there to see except a crush of people trying to save Dornie? His mood is already black, and he isn't looking for his wife and so misses her, at first. He doesn't dismount, for all that he can feel his animal's unease, sitting tall enough to see properly what there is to see.

He grimaces, some, when he sees bodies disappear into the gaping doors of the warehouse, smoke-filled and lit up in ways it shouldn't be. His eyes trick over where the fire dances across the rooftop, and before he can even put thought into action, there's an immense crack and splinter; the sound that wood in a hearth makes when heat finally splits it apart only magnified by mass and weight and the thunderous sound of it coming down from within. A moment later, men are scurrying out of the crippled building, but not as many that went in.

Edmund dismounts, then, basically grabbing a gawker by the neck and pressing the reins into his hands, instructing him to take the horse away from the chaos and tie her fast. (He is rarely worried about his mounts being stolen; he's had men hung from the ankles as punishment for doing any such thing.)

"Make sure they're not killing themselves," he tells Jorn. Edmund doesn't often order around the militiamen, they are Duncan's project, but he assumes a degree of authority; Duncan is not just Duncan, he is Rowntree. "And get those doing nothing doing something." Take some control, he means, basically; without breaking what organisation has been established. Edmund is moving, then, for the warehouse entrance, although possibly to wrangle people from going back inside than actually heading indoors himself. He pushes passed Algernon without a blink, and unknowingly finds himself in Aislinn's periphery.

Algernon arrived on foot and hasn't been here for long, layers of duster, coat and tie shed down to the waistcoat. The shirt beneath it will probably not recover, equal parts soaked in salt water and run black with soot where he's wrestled out the odd idiot or two to slip into unconsciousness on their way back out into open air.

He blends better into the mix without his hat, washed in orange with bucket in hand. Formerly — in hand. He stuffs it into someone else's grasp and winds away from the most intense heat when static warmth begins to buzz in his ears.

"Aye. Keep your eyes open," Edmund says in response, which is basically his way of agreeing with Jorn; but what even is there to see except a crush of people trying to save Dornie? His mood is already black, and he isn't looking for his wife and so misses her, at first. He doesn't dismount, for all that he can feel his animal's unease, sitting tall enough to see properly what there is to see.

He grimaces, some, when he sees bodies disappear into the gaping doors of the warehouse, smoke-filled and lit up in ways it shouldn't be. His eyes trick over where the fire dances across the rooftop, and before he can even put thought into action, there's an immense crack and splinter; the sound that wood in a hearth makes when heat finally splits it apart only magnified by mass and weight and the thunderous sound of it coming down from within. A moment later, men are scurrying out of the crippled building, but not as many that went in.

Edmund dismounts, then, basically grabbing a gawker by the neck and pressing the reins into his hands, instructing him to take the horse away from the chaos and tie her fast. (He is rarely worried about his mounts being stolen; he's had men hung from the ankles as punishment for doing any such thing.)

"Make sure they're not killing themselves," he tells Jorn. Edmund doesn't often order around the militiamen, they are Duncan's project, but he assumes a degree of authority; Duncan is not just Duncan, he is Rowntree. "And get those doing nothing doing something." Take some control, he means, basically; without breaking what organisation has been established. Edmund is moving, then, for the warehouse entrance, although possibly to wrangle people from going back inside than actually heading indoors himself. He pushes passed Algernon without a blink, and unknowingly finds himself in Aislinn's periphery.

The variously injured or exhausted are being hauled back, one man stumbled out from within and hacking up black from his lungs. But fortunately, those that worked smart over hard have succeeded; the fire is not spreading further.

"Shite," Beisdean groans mostly to himself in the water, distracted by that creak and splinter of wood and the murmur of the crowd in front of him. So distracted he doesn't see the bucket come back toward him in a softball sort of pass, and it catches him in the chest, bumping up against his chin, before his arms wrap around it.

Wincing, he works his jaw for a moment, waving off the muttered apology by his bucket-passer. Swiftly, he drags the bucket through the water, then shoves it back into the other man's hand just in time to grab another and do the same.

That's one of the funny things about marriages in which both partners are working adults. Aislinn and Edmund are seen apart more often than they are together, and although her eyes catch on his figure and linger there half a second longer than anyone else, bystanders who do not know them would never suspect them of behing husband and wife. When her feet start to move again, her path takes her not to Edmund, but to the man heaving on the ground.

She plants a knee on the pavement beside him, loops her arms around his shoulders and pours all her strength into helping him back to his feet so he can be moved away from the smoke, closer to the edge of the water where the air is clearer. "Luna!" she's shouting, desperate to attract the other woman's attention.

She just has to trust that Edmund won't do anything stupid.

The sound of the building catches Luna and she freezes, staring wide eyed at the little men hopping around the flames like ants on a burning hill. Their dilemma of whether to go in and rescue or stay within the relative safety of the exterior is felt as a pang. She stands dumb and numb as one of her rags is ripped from her hands.

It's several long seconds before the call of her name is registered and the prostitute turns to see the healer down with one of the crisps pulled from the fire. The younger blonde can't seem to find it in her to respond beyond that, not at first, but her legs have other ideas. As automatic as the reaction of a firing pin when a trigger is pulled, they carry her toward the other woman.

But she doesn't know what to do, so what's left is her hand holding out one of the wet rags.

"Bit late." Jorn mutters before Edmund starts off; he dismounts a moment later, pushing Kuu from him to get her to follow Edmund's horse. Being that they came together, she spots a cue when she sees one and tails the Rowntree horse nose-to-rear. As for the first patch of people that he sees standing around being idle meatsacks- Jorn startles some of them when he jabs a fist and barks. "You!"

"Gather up as many blankets as you can." A rather mundane request for as roughly as he made it, but with all its own purpose. His next is even louder, and Jorn moves to put himself between fire and street, ranging in a half-circle to push men away who may be trying to get into the warehouse, and yanking away those that Edmund forces back towards the street.

"Nobody goes in! This is not a request! If you've got buckets or bandages, I want to start seeing them! Now!" In other words, fetch your shit, or Jorn might lose his when you don't. The heat is already flushing his face into something more angry than it actually is, and the white pelt appears fiery orange against the light.

Damp cloth snapped from the grasp of a girl he doesn't look at twice to recognize in passing, Fogg pushes it across his face and around his neck. It's left to drape there once he's done, fashionably collecting cool air at the scruff of his collar and doing — very little to assist in his breathing.

It's up to a racking cough to do that, crud rendered thick with grime spat aside without regard for whose boots (or back) it might sully. A look craned around to Jorn's orchestration flashes pale into a scan over ash-blackened faces. Then skyward. He does not have blankets. Or a bucket.

He adopts another immobile corpus instead, coltish limbs drug up by the collar and over his shoulder before the owner can be trampled.

It's true that Jorn is not a man to be taken lightly, but while his command may do much to establish further organization among- and possibly save the lives of- those who were considering running into the warehouse, it does much less for those who had already run inside until they come back out again. Eduard Hossfeld is among the latter, although it's another man he's dragging out along the ground, rather than something more replaceable: At the end of the world, a human life is the most valuable commodity of all. With a scarf wrapped around his face and his rifle nowhere in sight, he looks very different than usual. And he needs a break.

Once confident he's pulled his ward to a safe distance and won't be stepped on, the German drops to a knee and sucks in a breath of cool, outside air. He knows how to work around fire, but that doesn't make it less dangerous. And the moment he can put an identity to the voice roughly ordering the inhabitants of Dornie around, he knows that this fight may be turning around for them. And just as soon as he's had a couple more gulps of air, he'll be right back into the thick of it, better prepared this time.

The folding in of the roof takes some of the fire with it. Water saturates wood and runs down the sides of brick and stone, and finally, the fire is beginning to dwindle and allowing partial structure to stand, even as choking smoke continues to billow, rage, lift into the air. His own scarf dragged across his face, Edmund is gripping the arm of a younger man who has been debating with himself about going in. He can hear the sounds of life from inside, but before Edmund can undergo any kind of heroic impulse to brave the ridiculous heat and poisonous smoke himself for the sake of the thin human howl coming out from within, there's another monstrous crack as more support rains down and silences that sound. He hauls the kid away.

It was dark when the fire began and got its attention, and that hasnt improved, but the firelight thrown in a different direction shows more to be revealed. From where Beisdean is standing with water to his knees, where Hossfield folds to regain his breath, and from where Jorn is carrying out his matching orders, all three men and those around them are privileged to the sight of words.

They scrawl in black paint, visible now that some wooden wall has collapsed. The letters are big and bold, and very deliberate.

THE OFFSPRING OF RICHES

PRIDE, VANITY, OSTENTATION, ARROGANCE

TYRANNY

With smoke stinging his eyes, it's hard to read all of those words, and Beisdean's starting to turn a bit blue in the lips from being too long in the water. Someone less educated nearby murmurs, "What does it say?" He too wants to know, so he leaves the water, dripping his way onto dry land to read the words.

His brow furrows, and he glances around to take in the reaction of the others to the words.

He murmurs them aloud to the man who followed him, adding with a shake of his head, "Dornie's got enough to deal with right now without adding arsonists to the mix."

The tears in Aislinn's eyes transform her vision into a hot, salty haze that burns when she tries to blink it away. She takes Luna's rag and wipes the mucous from the man's mouth after easing him back down onto the ground with her arm supporting his head and turning his face so he can better clear the greasy debris from his lungs and esophagus. If he vomits, he doesn't have to worry about drowning in his own fluids, but this is all Aislinn can do apart from making him as comfortable as possible.

She does not have access to the tools to best treat smoke inhalation, and neither did her father, or his father before him. Hyperbaric oxygenation and compression chambers are things of the past.

"Hold him," she instructs Luna, her voice weaker now that she has no need to shout to be heard. "Keep his head like this."

A jerky nod and a stunned expression at the bid for help. Luna is no healer but she sweeps over the man with her eyes before kneeling down like Aislinn and cradling the man's head in the crook of her arm like she was just witness. A helpless feeling overwhelms and nearly cripples her as she looks down at her charge.

"But— " the small squeak of protest is all she can muster until she chokes in a gasp of air and coughs it man out. The prostitute doesn't mean to be such an unstable support for the injured man. "— isn't there someone better?" Better suited to be a medical assistant or even better suited to be help.

The sooty head leaves a stain on her dress that may never come out, much like many of the other scuffs and marks she's received since she started trying to help. "I don't want to kill him… I'll just hold him until you find someone better."

Jorn's movements pause long enough to signal something having caught his attention, but once he has found the message and read it, the northman swivels his head around to scan the people along the street. As if he looks hard enough he can find someone acting suspiciously- but such is a subconscious attempt. As much as his inner law-abider might want it, Jorn probably isn't going to find an arsonist by glaring them away from passerby.

"The rest of you get back, come on, now…" He takes another sooty man by the shoulder to nudge him along, away from the warehouse. Most of them are blurry-eyed, smoke to be thanked for that. "Get them to keep some water going." Until it is smothered and soaked out.

Now is in no way the time to decipher messages, and although Hossfeld memorizes what he can in the brief period of time he looks at the message, most of his energy is spent forcing himself to recover enough to stand back up and make himself useful. At this moment, making himself useful does not mean rushing blindly back into the smoke and flames, but following Jorn's lead, what little of it he sees through his smoke-stung eyes, and making sure everyone is moving away from danger unless they absolutely need to be in its way. At least until he catches enough of his breath that he can handle a bucket. Or even just a blanket. Hossfeld stops only long enough to spit out a wad of ash and saliva, and then he's after Jorn. "We need a plan," he says, whether or not he can be heard, "Who to send where? We can't just throw water at it."

Another bucket of water slops against the burning building. Another arc glistens in the air and comes down upon the crippled roof. People move with intent or stall ineffectually, but the ratio between the two groups are beginning to tip in favour of the former. The chain of bucket carriers breaks, rebuilds, replaces its weak chinks.

And then the world turns into noise and light.

Those facing the water may find themselves seeing stars for a time afterwards, and everyone will have the ringing in their ears. The Kraken Prince sits in the black, firelit water, a long ship of splitted oak, and far enough down the docks to be safe from any flames. Except now it has its own as an explosion shudders through the air and sends splinters as long and thick as a man's arm flying into the night sky, flames instantly eating sail sheets and dancing up ropes, and for a moment, the bustling crowd simply stops, to fling themselves down or away, whether at their own will or by the concussive force of the explosion itself.

There's an almighty crack and groan as the mast twists and begins to fall in a mess of spars and rope and rolled sails, collapsing into the unforgiving waters of the loch.

Debris sprays, sometimes uselessly, but on occasion, it finds meat. Aislinn will not be able to determine the time between the explosion of the vessel at her back and when her head snaps forward and her body crumples after, red sudden and bright in her hair. Someone else paws at their leg with jagged wood as stabbed cleanly into the meat of it. The ship is already at an awkward angle as black water rushes into its bowels ripped open, and flames dance across that which remains exposed. It will be a sunken thing by morning, submerged in the shallower water, structure turned into a blackened ribcage.

The explosion has Beisdean hurling himself down and covering his head, then turning to look at where the people who saw the explosion point. Once the rain of debris stops, he scrambles back to his feet, slipping on wet docks as water sloshes from wet boots and clothes, and he turns to the nearest person who's been injured to help staunch their bleeding, to help get them away from the fire now on land and water alike.

Luna is right, incidentally. There are others who are better suited to the task than she, and as soon as word of the fire and subsequent explosion reach Ross Manor up at the top of Dornie's Northern Reach, she can look forward to having Aislinn's protege relieve her.

Until then, she's on her own with the dying man cradled in her arms. The other woman lies sprawled on the pavement amidst the fallen debris, some of it still smoking, her body limp as a kitten held tight and fast by the scruff, her bloodied face a pale half-moon eclipsed by the arm draped loose across it.

Cordelia Ross has the longest night of her life ahead of her.

The man in her lap is forgotten as Aislinn's name is shrieked from Luna's lips. His head jerks forward and then lands hard on the ground when the prostitute scrambles to a stand and sprints toward the downed woman. Pain and panic of nameless and faceless others is quickly forgotten, especially when the woman who supplied her with medication to sleep and feel numb for nearly half a decade is maimed.

Sliding to the ground instead of coming to a proper stop, the younger woman gingerly lifts the other into the same cradled position that she'd so recently be taught. Her voice finds a strength the rest of her lacks, "Someone please… Someone help, it's Aislinn Rowntree.." Rocking back and forth, she paints a pathetic picture in the middle of the street with the other woman on her lap.

Jorn is not facing the water at the time that the boat goes up; it still illuminates half of him and throws his, and everyone else's shadows long and stark against the buildings and street below. He turns at the booming flash, somehow knowing what has happened even before seeing it. Edmund had all rights to call on him- theft is theft, but Jorn had hoped that for whatever reason, it was not something personal. Unfortunately, it seems to be- at least enough to set it off inside the town.

Ears ringing, Jorn hefts his cloak upwards to blot out falling debris coming down onto his portion of space. It's all he can do to keep from putting himself in the way of someone, or something, either running or plummeting.

Halfway through the process of pushing to his feet, Algernon hunches from the blast at his back and fails to fall — a foot thrown forward keeps his base wide enough to withstand the bent nail that buries itself thwip like a bullet against the shield of his scapula.

He jerks, naturally, teeth grit to fire that's now before and after; he turns to survey the burning boat with everyone else once the debris rain has petered off into isolated drizzles of ember and scrap. The collapse of the mast. Fire crawling along rope and through the sails.

His ears are still ringing when he reorients himself and drags in a shaky breath, left arm used as a ladder by another climbing to his feet. A familiar voice is shrieking. Owens, Forge provides.

Explosions are not unfamiliar to Hossfeld, but they're aren't common either, and an explosion of this magnitude, that the sound and the fury reaches as far as it does, is all but unheard of. He shields himself from the initial blast, barely protected even from splinters, and then turns to see the aftermath for himself. Dornie doesn't have the resources to deal with a big problem effectively. How unfortunate then that, in a flashing instant, the big problem they were facing suddenly becomes a situation.

And for a moment, all that the vulture can do is stand and stare. This shouldn't have happened. At all. What do we do, now?

It's not so much a familiarity with Luna's voice as the words she is saying that quite suddenly summons the Rowntree heir to her side. Edmund crouches, his expression stony and impossible to read, his hands going out to touch Aislinn's face and then her throat, feeling her breath against his palm and the quiet thrum of her pulse. "I'll take her. Get out've the way," he tells Luna, moving to gather his wife from the whore's lap. Other injured people can be laid out on the ground and wait to be checked over. He is less concerned about other people. "And find Cordelia Ross, or someone who can."

The fire is still a problem, or, rather… it is, to a point. The next few minutes see a sudden roiling of stormcloud, unnoticeable until the moon and stars are concealed, but quite tangible when they sudden bucket down sheets of rain. A little heartless for those suffering, but it makes quick work of the lingering fire on both the ruined boat and partially collapses warehouse.

Lucien's late appearance can be defined by the thunder of another set of hooves arriving, a leather coat thrown over softer clothing, and paying only as much attention to what's going on as it takes him not to trample anyone and to finally see what's become of his family's livelihood. His expression is about as impressed as the impassive, murky storm that continues to bucket water down above Dornie.

"What in the name of saints happened," he barks at— basically anyone who is near and conscious and desires to pay attention.

From his place kneeling next to one wounded man, Beisdean looks up when it starts to rain, then turns his attention back to the man whose bloody wound he tries to staunch with his hands. Lucien is squinted up at through a veil of wet hair. "Some one set fire to the warehouse. It wasn't an accident; they left a message," he calls out. "Then the boat out there exploded."

It's a terse bit of summary, and the man turns his attentions to the wounded man once more.

Luna hovers around Edmund for a few seconds, her hands still stretched into the empty air after Aislinn's been taken from her. A squeak at the back of her throat is the only sign he receives that she might have heard what he said, and maybe even understood it.

It's a slow progression but even stunned and stumbling over injured and perhaps even dead bodies, she manages to catch sight of Algernon, just before the white pelt of the bear comes into view. It's grey with soot and smoke but still vibrant against the colors of the fire and smoke. Her feet stop moving at the Englishman. "Mister Rowntree needs Cordelia Ross. Aislinn's dead, I think, her head got blown to pieces." There's a bit of blood on Luna's dress but not enough to make that story believable.

Luckily for Jorn, there are men yelling in his ears and Luna is too far for him to hear. He'd be after Edmund if he could.

"Hvis dette er din feil…" Jorn growls in the background of Beisdean's explanation, as he approaches Lucien and the horse, checking back only to make sure that nobody is dumb enough to run into the crumbling ruins of the warehouse. "There's been a fire, I should think that is obvious." Maybe a little bit of sass, yes.

"There is nothing else that you can do." Jorn lifts a hand to the rain in reference to it; it has plastered his hair down and brings some ice to his blue eyes.

Thought mired in a greasy smog of smoke, rain, adrenaline and endogenous morphine, Algernon hasn't moved in the time it takes Luna to resolve directly in front of him. Having forgotten to close his jaw out of its raggedy breathed jut, he stares down at her. Not comprehending for the several seconds it takes his brain to shove square peg through round hole.

Aislinn is dead. Her head got blown to pieces.

Disconcerted, or something close to it, he doesn't search out evidence with his eyes for more than a beat or two before blinking hard against the wet and coming to terms with it as truth. Accepting Luna's word as gospel may be evidence of precisely how addled he is. Regardless, he nods and starts off to the side, boot toe catching on a corpse. Off to fetch Cordelia.

Fire, then an explosion, and finally rain. Hossfeld stares up at the sky, too drained to be useful. Too drained to even think about being useful. In a minute or perhaps two, he'll come back to reality, but for now, his mind needs some time alone to assemble all the recent events surrounding him into something that resembles a coherent narrative.

Lucien looks down at Beisdean, rain running heedless into his eyes, sharply intent at words to do with the uncovering of a deliberate act. The fire first, and then the ship. Once Beisdean is once again bent over the man with blood pooling around the worst of his wounds, a flick of a glance is what Lucien gives Jorn's sass, one that is both, somehow, acknowledgment and dismissal. Not that he says much to Beisdean either; he looks again at what's become of his ship, before he abruptly steers his horse away in a show of ire that is thinly veiled.

With nothing to do here, as pointed out, he heads away, cantering off in the direction of the Rowntree castle as if racing something.

With Luna off to set things into motion, Edmund gathers Aislinn up, her head tucked to his shoulder, and moves on the retreat from the crush of injured and whole alike. And the occasional dead. The sudden onset of rain is a distraction but not wholly unwelcome for all that he seeks shelter from both the water and the people. The place continues to stink of smoke, and it may remain that way for days to come.