Thomas headed downstairs the morning after his wedding to find Holly preparing breakfast and his brother, helping himself in the larder.
“Hey” Thomas shouted “ Don’t they feed you back home?” Alistair peered around the door grinning, “Im a growing boy” he joked.
“So what do I owe this pleasure” Thomas said taking a seat as holly served up some food.
Alistair wandered over taking a seat while holly dished him a plate up too “ Just checking in on you” he answered, “ how was last night did you settle in ok?” he asked Holly.
Holly nodded “ Yes thank you, the rooms lovely” she said taking a seat next to Alistair.
Alistair turned to Thomas “so how was your first night as a married man?” he said grinning.
Thomas chuckled “ oh it was fine” he said “ would have been better if my bride hadn’t fallen asleep on me”.
Alistair burst out laughing while holly’s face flooded with colour “ Oh dear” Alistair exclaimed turning to holly “ is he that bad, he couldn’t even keep you awake”.
Holly laughed “ I was tired” she explained “ besides Im not sure this is really the conversation for breakfast”.
Alistair chuckled taking a mouth of his food “ how are the young ones doing?” he asked changing the conversation.
Thomas nodded taking a bite of his food “ It’s going well, Vince is starting their Training tomorrow. I think he wants you to help actually”.
Alistair nodded “Yeah he’s already asked me, I told him I would after I get back from the mountain’s”.
Thomas looked up “ your going to the mountains?”
Alistair nodded “Yeah me and Vasyl where planning of scouting them out see if we can’t work out where these bandit attacks are coming from, that’s why Im here actually I wanted to know if you wanted to bring some of the new men give them a test run? Its only a scouting mission but it will give us an idea of what exactly where up against”.
Thomas nodded “when are you planning on leaving?”.
“End of week, is that ok?” Alistair replied.
Thomas nodded “ that’s great, ill pick some men out ready”.
A few minutes later Holly finished her meal and headed off out of the kitchen, with Holly out of the way, Thomas decided to question his brothers about the wedding “ Alistair im alittle confused about what happened yesterday, why did my father agree to allow me to marry Holly?”.
“Wasn’t a hard decision really” Alistair replied “ Orrick was the one who insisted, and to be honest as the marriage to Raeann was only arranged to help Orrick”
“Yes but Im just worried about what’s going to happen to Holly’s family now?” Thomas said “ Father was so insistent that they needed help when I left for university”.
Alistair nodded “ Yes they where struggling financially and Politically, but to be honest Orrick’s made good progress financially in the last few years, the farm he has on his land has just completed a huge expansion and are bringing in good tax’s for him, Daria married and she and her husband settled on Orricks land providing an income and now with Hollys brother trying to re-build his fathers business thing are really looking up for the family financially at least”.
“What about politically?”
“He’s still in a tentative position there” Alistair admitted “ Marrying below his status hurt him but tbh he’s not the focus of everyone’s attention these days, Lord Darkfire is making enemies left right and centre. He duelled Peter Hamdun, and then to make matters worse he married a peasant girl”
“So tbh Orricks marriage to a merchant widow pales in comparison. Father figures that Hollys as much as family to Orrick these days anyway, he gave her away after all. So we show support thought that, Besides by allowing you to marry below your station, only validates Orrick’s marriage to her mother, after all if holly’s good enough for royalty her mothers certainly good enough for a politician.
Thomas nodded “So the Vaux’s are going to be ok?” he asked uncertain.
Alistair nodded “ They will be fine”
Thomas took a huge sigh of relief “That’s good to hear” he answered “ what about the Darkfire’s? You said that Lord Darkfire was making enemies? How’s his position at the moment?”
“That’s a difficult question “ Alistair admitted “ why do you ask?”
Thomas shrugged not yet ready to tell his brother about Quillen “ just wondering”.
“The Darkfires are a bit of a mystery tbh, we know they are rich… very rich, but other than that we don’t know much about him. Politically he’s pretty much alone, Hamduns hate him, Beaumonts think his bloodlines no better than peasants”.
“The Vaux’s don’t have a problem with him as such but Orricks sitting on the fence, showing support might hurt him more than there family can take at the moment so he’s just staying out of it”.
Thomas nodded “What about father? How does he see him?”
Alistair shook his head “ I don’t think we have any real reasons to worry about them yet. I think he’s got a tendency to rub out father up the wrong way. Tariks confident and little cocky he doesn’t tend to show the same respect to our father as the others. I guess that and the fact that he has paper work proving his families claim to the crown makes our father somewhat nervous”.
Thomas nodded again “ So if someone was to stand against Lord Darkfire then he doesn’t really have any supporters?”
“Not really? “ Alistair answered “What’s this about I get the feeling your fishing for something”.
Thomas shook his head “No not really, just trying to get a feeling for the political situation now Im back, anyway i have some unfinnished business i must attend too with my wife.” he said standing.
Alistair laughed “Try and keep her awake this time” he joked. Thomas scowled at his brother, and headed out of the kitchen to find Holly.