Visitation Rights

Title: Visitation Rights
Time Period: May 16, 135 A.E.
Characters Appearing:

Summary: Jorn gets an odd visitor with less than uplifting opinions.

It's a certain amount of determination that can bring a person out this way. Especially when they're not entirely sure where they're going. But, Nonie is nothing if not exactly that.

She ties off her horse when she reaches the cottage, untying a container from it's secure location behind the saddle to take it with her as she approaches the door.

She announces herself with a knock, just one simple rap before she steps back to wait.

Maybe he's not home, the quiet is distracting on its own- no- there's an animal that rounds the side of the house when Nonie gets to the door. One that is probably let out only under supervision. Mona's long ears flap against her jawline as she hops around the bend, letting out a threatening little bleat. Attack goat. If he didn't notice the knock right away, he certainly hears the dairy goat blathering about at the front of the house.

"Mona, roe ned- oh." The heavy front door creaks open, and Jorn seems as surprised by the person standing there as she probably is by the goat- who is now assaulting her pantleg with blunt teeth. Being at home, there is no white pelt glued to his back, and the usual armored look is replaced by his looking rather mundane in a mid-sleeved tunic and trousers.

Nonie lifts an eyebrow at the sight of the goat, a hand moving to her hip at the bleat. Whether or not she has reason to worry, she seems to believe her cold stare enough to deter the creature.

It isn't.

Her hand moves to try to press the goat away from her clothes, but it's clear she's not used to handling animals. So when the door opens, she looks toward Jorn with a crooked smile. "I don't suppose you're of the mind to save me from another, if smaller, assailant?"

Goats will be goats, and even Jorn has to step outside and pull her away from Nonie rather than command her off. He pushes her away with one shin, and directs her elsewhere. She still hovers nearby, however, with a beady look and a flick in her tail.

"You stop that." Jorn mutters to the goat before he grunts once and turns back to his visitor. His fingers find his hips, and while Jorn takes a more studious look at Nonie, she also does get that glimmer of recognition. "I usually do not get new company out here."

Nonie nods her gratitude as she straightens up, bringing both hands to hold her container, instead of just one. "Have to get new company some time, or else how do you get old company, aye?" The English accent is gruff from tiredness, possibly because she's been working hard since she reached Dornie. Lots to sell. Deals to make.

"I brought a bit of dinner. I couldn't help but notice you left the inn early… I had hoped there was nothing wrong." It's hard to say if she worried, exactly, given that her voice doesn't dip toward the gentler tones often, but then, she is here.

The expression that Jorn's face finds is a strange one; only in the sense that he can't seem to decide on something, and it ends up as nearly deadpan. His mouth finally bends at the corners- but neither up nor down, exactly. It's clear that it isn't often he gets people- strange women- coming around with food and/or curiosity.

"New company is too scared to come out here alone." He gives her a small shrug of his shoulders, glancing down to his boots and back up again, browline knotting together. "A friend of mine was having trouble. Is having. I went to see what I could do." It was not much, by the sound of his disappointment.

"Do you bring strangers dinner very often?"

"Seen scarier places than this. Although, a bit of line along that… path," as much as it is a path, "wouldn't go amiss." But she doesn't seem to serious, as her expression takes on a wry look.

Nonie glances to the package when it's mentioned, and then looks back to him. "That's the thing, when you're a traveling salesman. Everyone's a stranger and no one is." But her head cants to one side as she regards him for a moment. "Anything I can help with? This trouble. You seem… like maybe you weren't as much help as they hoped."

"I wasn't. Her friend got kidnapped." Jorn leaves out the part of who it was. "I tried to sniff him out, but there wasn't a strong enough trail. I'm not sure what to do about it." He shakes his head and puts a hand up to scratch his jaw. There is a hesitance to invite her inside, though he seems wary about the state of the evening on staying outside. Jorn steps away to walk past the goat- still lurking by the house- and get her to follow him. "I need to put her up." Is all that he offers, awkwardly, before Mona trots after him around the side of the cottage. The pens being just behind the house, it doesn't take him terribly long before he comes back, looking as if he has decided something.

"Would you like to come in? It's probably more rustic than the homes in town, but…" Self-consciousness wins out for a moment.

"Kidnapped?" Nonie frowns a bit there, deeper than her default expression, "That is a bit of trouble. I do hope she's not— too hopeful. These things don't tend to end happily, do they?"

She steps out of the way to let him tend to his goat, although she leans against the door frame as she watches him head off. A small smile comes to her lips while he's gone, perhaps waiting to see if she gets that invitation in the end or not. But when he comes back, the expression dims again, and she straightens up.

"Oh," she says, blinking a bit in surprise as he offers the invite, "I wouldn't mind, if you don't mind the company. I promise this isn't my cooking." Probably something from the inn.

"We all liked him. That's the problem." Jorn frowns, and it seems like his irritation with kidnappings folds in on that cue. "He was kidnapped by hobs. All I smelled were those." Seems he meant literally sniffing, to boot. He mentions the hobs with a slightly bitter intonation. "Come in, then." The northman has to duck an inch or so to get in his own door, but the floor is down that step- it evens out. "Watch your feet."

"And excuse my mess." Jorn doesn't actually sound apologetic; his house is tidy anyway- or at least not what one would assume to make up a bachelor pad in the woods. The cottage is neat enough for the one that lives there.

"Ah, yes. I suppose that explains your friend being upset enough to pull you away from a night out— hobs?" Nonie eyes him there a moment, like he might be putting her on. But she follows him inside also, ducking more out of perceived need than actual need, but she straightens as she steps down to the floor.

"Oh, not at all," she says, politely dismissing the need for her to excuse the room. She comes over to a chair, fingers brushing along the fur pelt hanging over it before she sits down, setting her offering on a nearby table. 'I would say she would have to worry about him already being dead, but it isn't like hobs, carting off a full grown man. Perhaps they're just having a bit of fun and he'll be back and right as rain in a few days."

"He's a bit of a naive man. Young, silly, kind of like a family dog." Jorn's descriptions of Cas go along the safe road for now. "But he's just as loyal. If they were messing with him, he'd have tried to get back immediately. She was there when it happened, he'd hate to do that to her." Of the other furs in the room, she'll immediately recognize the polar bear; it lounges like a lazy, eyeless beast on the back of the bigger chair. It faces the room, watchful.

"Hm. Do you want a drink? I've got tea…" Jorn doesn't sit, awkwardly hovering there in his den. He has other things to drink, but would that be improper?

Nonie chuckles a little at the description, her gaze shifting to take in the rest of the room as she replies, "I think I understand why you all much like him so." She only looks back as he explains a little about the friend and the missing's relationship a bit. "Ah," she says, clearly reading more into it, "And I imagine she's not handling it terribly well, aye?"

She's a cold woman, but one would assume even someone cold could sound a bit more sympathetic there. But perhaps she's giving it her best try.

"I'd love a drink, actually. Tea is… lovely, of course. Don't suppose you've something a bit harder?" Improper or not, apparently. She gestures over toward the more familiar pelt, her head tilting again. "When you said you were sniffing him out— " She's got a question, but she pauses there, not sure she should actually voice it.

"Not really. I don't think she is. Of course I have, I was just-" Jorn tries to get his mind off of the poor pair for a little bit, at least, to clarify for the woman what he meant. Hearing things and seeing them are different, and somehow he finds himself preferring she know what he tells her- not what someone else tells her. "…Yes." He takes a jab at it, however poorly, and he's suddenly not sure what the question was going to be. Ah well.

"What do you like?" Jorn takes the kettle from its perch on a grate over coals- he seems to have already started the first idea before she even got here. "I've some harder things, you could always just do what I do and put them together…" He looks a little sheepish for a moment.

Glancing to the pelt, Nonie presses her lips together for a moment, then back at him again. "Are you a mage? Some sort of connection to the animals?" She doesn't, in the end, apologize for prying, but there's the impression she isn't the type to apologize much.

"Whiskey, if you've got it. But I'm less picky after the second or third drink," she says with a bit of a gruff laugh. When he gets that more sheepish look, she sits back in her chair to look him over, possibly adjusting her judgment of him, but not in a bad way, it seems. "Sounds like a brilliant idea."

"Not a mage. Don't go thinking Mona out there is more than a pet." Jorn laughs for the first time during her visit, though it is a dry one. Still a laugh. "I am a skinwalker, and that is my brother." He speaks instead, of the pelt as his other half. So she was partly right, in some ways.

Jorn starts for a low cupboard next- he has just enough dishes for himself and perhaps one or two others, cups excluded. He pulls free two stoneware mugs, and crouches down to reach into the lower shelf for the whisky jug,

Nonie laughs, too, and lifts her hands in protest, "The thought hadn't crossed my mind. Honest." She glances back over to the pelt, her expression curious. But she remember to look back his way fairly quickly, "Ah, a skinwalker. I thought that was just… myth. Fascinating."

And when his attention turns to the cupboards, her curiosity turns her back toward the pelt. Fascinating may be an understatement, the way she concentrates on it. She may have intended to look away before Jorn could notice her interest, but instead, her brow furrows as if troubled by something about it.

"Rare enough that it seems a myth." The northman shifts and stands back up again, only to pause and watch Nonie watching the polar bear skin. He is silent. She might not want to stare at it for long, as it seems to begin staring back, as if alive. Aware.

Or, that could be the flicker of the fire.

Jorn coughs, politely.

When the pelt looks back, Nonie straightens up suddenly, brow furrowing a bit more. It's Jorn's cough that makes her jump and she turns to look at him.

"Your brother," she repeats his term for it, although it sounds a little strange from her, "isn't… still alive, is it?" She chuckles again, like she might be a bit nervous about it. But she makes a point of not looking back again just now. Even if she'd like to.

This is one of those parts that Jorn enjoys the most, out of secretiveness and playfulness all the same. He won't give away everything. The tall man just offers her a small smile and sets aside the cups and jug, taking up a tin of tea from nearby and tapping a spoonful into each mug. His movements are unbothered, and he is dreadfully silent for too long. Even if he is smiling.

Don't be silly. It's just a pelt.

Nonie waits for a bit, her curiosity making her leeeean a bit forward in that chair. When she ends up with her elbow propped on her knees, she clues in that he's not spilling the ins and outs just yet.

"You're making fun," she accuses, but with a crooked smile to show she's not offended. "It's just that I swear it looked at me. Like those works of art where the eyes follow you."

"I've been known to do that." Make fun, he means. Jorn looks over his shoulder to her, before he puts away the tin and takes the mugs to the kettle, filling them and allowing them to steep there on the little table between the bits of seating. He still doesn't sit- not used to playing the host, he looks like he is putting it off.

"One reason that few people are comfortable with being too close for too long." Not when it's staring, that's for sure.

"Have you been? I feel you need a warning label," Nonie says with a softer chuckle as she leans back again. "But the pelt, I suppose I can see where it would put some off." She glances back over at it, and while her brow furrows, she's not put off exactly. Perhaps just a little too fascinated.

But with a breath in, she looks back to Jorn. Or rather up. "Aren't you uncomfortable standing?"

"They're also uncomfortable because I've cut off fingers." Jorn sounds serious, but it could go either way, considering. At her prompting, he does sit, rather abruptly, in the chair where the pelt sits perched on the back. "I'm no host." He folds his hands between his knees.

"Apparently not a storyteller, either."

Nonie lifts an eyebrow at that first note, but it just makes her smile crookedly. He sits and she shifts to face him a little better. "You're not Miss Manners, no. But you having taken my fingers yet, so I think it levels out."

That last note has that smile dimming, but she sounds just as dryly amused when she replies. "Not a storyteller, but decent at mystery."

"Yet." Alright, now he's playing again. They have a few minutes until the tea actually steeps enough, but the smell is strong- something naturally sweet, but not terribly so. If Jorn has things like sugar or otherwise, he isn't offering unless she asks. Commodities, you know.

"I've had practice. It's easier to control armies that way. If they think you're more omnipotent than you are."

"Hopefully a bit of liquor will keep the urge at bay," Nonie says, curling and uncurling her fingers. "I'm attached to them, you see."

The tea seems a bit out of mind at the moment, as she barely give it a glance. "I'd put money on the fact that you turn into a giant bear helps with leadership as well. Or is that a new feature?" She lets her gaze slip over to the pelt again, but she's doing a decent job of keeping her glances short. "It helps if you actually are omnipotent, too. To a degree, at least." Although, what practice a toy saleswoman has at leading armies is anyone's guess.

Toy soldier armies.

Well, that's what Jorn imagines, anyay. He clears his nose with a sniff, sitting straight on the edge of that chair.

"Old feature. My name isn't Wartooth incidentally." He wouldn't usually tell anyone that, but as she skirts so close to it he figures that it is related. "I'm not, by the way. Omnipotent. I'd have known you were coming. But warriors tend to be more obtrusive- it was easy to know what the grunts were up to." For better or worse, and it freaked them out when the commander came around looking to dispense justice, or alternatively preempt something. "The times it is harder is when they have someone smarter behind them, pulling strings." It's one of the reasons he is where he is- someone on his crew pulled those strings that created the mutiny, which left him for dead. Jorn has his suspicions about who, and no way to get back at them. The thoughts crease his face into a frown again, and his pale eyes bore a hole into the nearest bit of floor.

"Oh, isn't it? A name earned rather than born with, aye?" Nonie lifts a leg to rest its ankle on the opposite knee, her hand wrapping around it as she listens to him go on.

"Well, of course you're not," she says with a low laugh, although one might wonder what she was referring to, if not him, "You'd have known I was coming. You'd know where your missing friend is. I dare say you'd be a spoil sport for all manner of sins." There's a nod, though, toward the end. "When they fight with brains and brawn, it's all a bit unfair. It's harder to hunt intelligence."

"I'm a spoil sport anyway." Jorn does say this slightly in the manner of a warning, hand rubbing at the side of his jaw again. "Sant at. That's why I try to stay on the good sides of those types." Which includes, actually, working for one.

"Have you had luck with your wares?" Silly Jorn is talking about himself, and seems to have realized it. For once.

"That's too bad. I happen to think life isn't complete without a little mischief." Nonie shifts enough to rest an elbow against the arm rest, leaning her chin against her palm. "It's a good idea. Some would argue it's a good idea to be on everyone's good side. But that's just so tiring."

She grins when her business is brought up, a bit of a smugness in that expression. "Oh, yes. Luckily, the toys are always so popular. And since I can only come through town very rarely, I don't ever have a problem selling. Not in Dornie. I suspect I'll be heading out again soon, now that I've been able to secure some interesting supplies to bring to the workshop."

"The mischief in my life is largely caused by others." Jorn sighs and takes a glance to the mugs on the table. He gets up a moment later and roves off to fetch a tin spoon and the whisky jug. "People think I drink more tea than I actually do." Presumably because of this. He pops the cork and tops off both mugs, setting the jug aside once he is finished. Jorn may not be Miss Manners, but he knows how to prep and stir a cup of (special)tea.

"I've seen children with them- sometimes adults- but I haven't had the notion to interact with one. Are they just mobile?" As opposed to …sentient.

Nonie laughs again at that notion, perhaps finding it all too easy to believe that he is less trouble than his friends are. "Silly them for not paying attention," she notes, as far as how much tea he doesn't drink, "They might enjoy their own tea more, if they caught on."

She watches him fixing the mugs just so, her head tilting some as if to follow the swirling liquid. "They do sometimes seem more than just a toy," she says distractedly, "Some people claim to hold conversations with them. Or that they play a bit of music that's too appropriate or seem to try to jolly their owners." Or sometimes harm them, but she doesn't mention that directly. Still, rumors exist. "But it's just a bit of magic, is all. People have overactive imaginations."

"A bit of magic goes a long way." Jorn finally holds out one of the mugs to her, expression somewhere between nostalgic and grim. "And I have learned over the years to not mess around where magic is concerned. Ignorance or flippancy gets people in trouble. It's something to respect, even if its only purpose is to be toys."

"I might have to see one for myself to understand."

"One could argue that using it to make toys at all is flippant," Nonie says as she reaches to take that mug, "Ignorance is, of course, dangerous, but what use is all this magic if we fear to use it? If we have the gift, it's pointless to set it in the corner out of some notion that overuse or flippancy is going to harm something out there."

She blows on the liquid before taking a drink. She must be familiar with hard liquor, for how little she reacts to it being there. "I believe we can arrange something there, to get you a sample. I may have to send one this way, if the shops here won't let you test one. Maybe something akin to a loyal dog." Teasing, if inappropriately so. Maybe she spends too much time alone on the road.

"With great power comes great responsibility." Both sets of fingers on the mug, Jorn says this with gravitas enough to make it seem like someone important once said it. Or perhaps it is just him. "That's all I'm saying."

"I think I'd like that. I never had much of a boyhood." The northman chuckles, chewing a moment on the inside of his cheek and considering his words. "Seems like all I ever did was mend nets and slice up fish. Play stickball, maybe."

"That's a shame. Everyone should have at least a little time for a childhood." Spoken like a true toy salesman. "But I do understand. I spent my youth working my parents' farm. Not nets and fish, but enough work to cut into any carefree innocence young people are supposed to enjoy."

Which might explain her current profession a little. Given that she still sounds bitter about her childhood and all.

But she looks over at him, still frowning, but possibly shrugging the topic off for the moment. "I do understand what you mean, about responsibility. But I also believe magic needs to be reveled in."

"Of course. Don't get me wrong. I revel in it as much as any heathen skinwalker." Jorn laughs into his mug, near to sputtering as he chooses his phrasing. "Maybe a little more. There's more reason for me living out here than for me to be alone." He doesn't happen to clarify this.

"Mankind apparently went the wrong direction once before. I'd hope we learned to not ignore our world. Including magic."

"Oh, I'm sure we'll stumble again eventually. It does seem the human condition to never actually learn from our mistakes for very long. Maybe this time we'll go too hard in the other direction." Nonie stands then, bringing her cup with her to drink from as she strides over toward the fireplace.

"Need time to frolic?" It's her best guess as to why a skinwalker would need alone time and a lot of space. "I suppose I don't blame you, there. But it does seem lonely, doesn't it? Being all the way out here."

"I'm able to frolic generally anywhere, thankfully. The town is used to me. That doesn't mean I go around the market on four legs with a fur coat." Jorn scuffs a boot on the floor and watches her stand and wander closer to the fire. "It's not lonely here. It's quiet. I'm closer to nature, so I'll never be completely alone."

"Fur coats are notorious for making people jealous," Nonie observes as she watches the fire. There's a moment taken to swallow down the rest of her tea-slash-whiskey concoction before she turns to look at him.

"And that's enough? Nature?" She seems full of disbelief, this one. But she smiles crookedly as the warmth of the liquor spreads to her cheeks, "I suppose I should leave you to it, aye? I really just… wanted to see if everything was alright." Which it isn't, of course. "And the dinner."

"It's just enough. I don't need much to be content, Miss Lamont." There's room for improvement, of course. Jorn spares her a short chuckle and leans onto the top of one fist, elbow on the arm of the chair. "I have my friends, my job, my home, my faith- and pretty soon, a full belly." As far as he can see, he's doing just fine.

"Which I should thank you for."

"Seems like you may have discovered the secret behind happiness. You should take up teaching people to be content with the little things." Nonie sets her cup down, for the moment, on the mantle before she turns to look at him, a crooked smile on her lips as her hands come to rest on her lips.

"Is that you asking me to stay?"

Wait, what? Judging by the bewildered look on his face- no, it wasn't. His cheeks flush over, and even with orange light he seems to go a little white on the edges. Not the first time he has been 'read into', and certainly not the last. Jorn lets out a small cough, suddenly not quite able to look her in the face like he was doing a moment before.

"I'm- I was thanking you. For bringing it." It is increasingly presentable to Nonie, that what she sees(and hears) is what she gets. He seems to have considered the visit as repayment, possibly, for the incident with the bandits.

Her response to the flushing is what seems to be a deeply amused, tilted grin. Amused enough that she very well might have been looking to get a blush out of him. It must be the alcohol. "Well, you're welcome," she says, leaving her mug behind as she steps away from the fireplace, making her way toward the door.

And that might have served as a goodbye, but she turns when her hand reaches the doorknob. "It may be little consolation, considering your little friend, but at least you can rest easier now. I suspect the attacks will ease off now they've got what they came for." There's a hint of a smile, still crooked, as she turns the handle to start out the door.

"If that came out badly-" He didn't mean to sound as if her words were out of line, and it seems he takes it that way at least for a moment. Jorn stands when she starts to see herself out, but he doesn't follow her until she is turning the knob of the oak door, and by then he looks somewhat puzzled. "Wait."

"How do you figure?" And why does she sound so certain that Cas is what they wanted? Then again- he was attacked, in essence, about three times that Jorn can remember.

That start of an apology is brushed off, apparently she's not easily offended. But it's the request to wait that pauses her, door half open, hand lingering on the knob in the midst of making an exit. Nonie has to think a moment about what she just said.

But she looks back to him, her eyebrows lift. It takes a moment, her response, but her free hand spreads out in front of her as if it should be obvious. "It seems to me, these attacks you all have been suffering, they seem like just harassment for the sake of. But if they took him, maybe those that came before were failures and this one with your friend was the success. Aye?"

"It's more than harassment." Jorn's mouth creases into a frown. "But that would say why it keeps happening. What would they possibly want with anyone? With Cas?" He puts the cup down and rubs his forehead. Hew thought that he was done thinking about it. For just a little while. Seems not.

"Sorry. This looks like it's going to stay on my mind. Rightfully so."

"Who can know the foreign mind?" Nonie lets out a brief chuckle that lacks mirth, and she lifts a shoulder. "I can't say what they want with him. But they took him, so they must want something." She's already stated how hopeless she thinks the situation to be, so she refrains from offering the most obvious reason why a beast would go hunting.

"I wouldn't expect it to be so easy to forget. He must be a good friend." She smiles there, and it might be meant as sympathetic, but she misses the mark. "If I don't see you before I leave town, if was good to meet you." Her smile widens there, and she turns to complete her halted exit and return to where she left her horse.

"It was good to meet you again, I hope you have a safe ride back to town." Jorn stays hovering in the front doorway, propping his arm on the side. "Thank you, again." Even though her input on some things was not as valuable, he does seem to have enjoyed her visit; insofar as he is definitely smiling more than he was when she came to the door.