After gathering some information, and having time to allow the ingredients of the scandal to stew, I pull Lord Teddy aside with a plan. I propose we tell the following story:
During one of our trips to Gulltown, with the purpose of accompanying Perrin to go pay off some of his many, many debts, we came across a woman and her young son. The woman, Terry, shared she was escaping from a man named Rusty, who I knew of from my former life in the south as a con man, greedy, cruel and dripping in riches from his scams. It was well known that Rusty had a ransom out for the return of his son. While we took Terry and her son back to Snownook to shelter them from Rusty, perhaps Perrin saw our departure to Valyria as an opportunity to collect on this ransom to pay off his debts by returning the boy to Rusty. And perhaps upon Perrin’s return without his squire, Terry murdered him in his chamber one night while pretending to change his linens then left in the night.
Teddy presented this story to the Lord and Lady the next day, and while Alys seemed to buy the story right away, Ronnell expressed some doubt, and requested we continue to look into the matter.
At the end of the meeting, Dolins unfolded the ancient banner of House Lannister, and asked aloud what we should do with it. Seeing an opportunity to build my network of spies, I speak in favor of returning the banner to Casterly Rock as a act of good faith and diplomacy.
The next night, knowing of Lord Ronnel’s sweet tooth, I manufacture the opportunity have an audience with him and Chance, and try to convince him further of the story Teddy told. He is agreeable, but clearly not convinced, and urges me consider how to make this explanation of Perrin’s death as thoughtful as possible, as Lord Pryor will not be happy. I thank him for his advice, and he shares joyous news, that House Jasper will host a small tournament in two months, in June. He asks me to pass on the invitation to Lord Pryor when we bring Ser Perrin’s remains and the story of his murder to the Pryor’s.
I check in briefly with Rhaella, who hands me a folded note, but I do not have to time to read it before heading out to the Isle of Pebbles.
When we arrive to the island, the Rambis is met at the dock by a sergeant and a few military men, there to collect Perrin’s body. House Pryor is nowhere to be seen, and no invitation to the castle is extended. Regardless, Teddy urges us on, and in the audience of House Pryor, we gush about the bravery and pleasant memories of their son. They push us for more details, and Teddy and I give one another a side eye, and request a more…private audience. Jardon, Darron and Dolins step out, as do his guards, and Teddy tiptoes around the tale of Perrin’s passing.He reveals that Perrin had a gambling problem, and that this may have contributed to his demise, but doesn’t reveal the detail about Terry being his murderer, or that Perrin took the boy to Rusty. I admire the lordling’s dance of diplomacy, and his sensitive presentation of such a challenging story, and think for a moment about what a good team he and I make. Lord Pryor asks no further questions, and doesn’t show signs of doubt about our preliminary details, but demands that we apprehend his son’s murderer and bring them back to the Isle of Pebbles alive for justice. We agree quickly, then head back to an especially salty Jardon and the ship.
Jardon sails us to Gulltown, and on the voyage Jardons admits an eye opening tale about his last time in town. In an effort to help pay off Perrin’s debts, they agreed, for one reason or another, to burn down the winter’s reprieve on behalf of the Falcon’s Nest?! His explanation is winding and confounding, and I am left shaking my head at the choices made by some of my fellow house mates. Jardon has many skills, but wisdom is clearly not one of them.
Our first day in Gulltown only gets more bizarre, as the Falcon’s Nest, which Jardon describes as “his”, then storms into the building of the harbor master. Teddy and I stay outside, and hear commotion and chaos from within. The harbor master runs to the street moments later yelling for guards, and Jardon then comes out, arms waving wildly, ranting about House Schett. Good god, what in seven hells is going on here?!