The Long Game

The Long Game

Who: Jet, Akemi, Akio
When: Month 5, 203 AT
Where: Tavern, Unknown
What: Akemi tells Jet about Arlet.

Akemi took her time in reaching out to Jet, not out of spite to Arlet, but having pushed it off for as long as she did, it got pushed even further down Akemi’s list of priorities with the birth of a beautiful baby girl. Akemi’s dedication to Zinovia and her daughter would’ve continued to supercede any obligations to Fort’s newest Weyrleader were it not for a very strongly worded letter from Honshu’s junior goldrider. Akemi has brought her twin to this meeting that she arranged at the seedy bar, for support and to also spend time with him outside of the structure of the Hold. The pair of them are sat in a far corner, sipping on lukewarm ale. Akio’s eyes keep drifting around the room, soaking in the types of people that are attracted to a place he would never venture. “Why did you originally meet this person again?” he asks his sister, swinging a frown at her. Akemi glares at him instead of answering. “Fine, forget I asked,” Akio mutters.

When Jet enters the bar, she does nothing to conceal the fact that she’s brought more than one weapon along with her, including the half-grown gold firelizard on one shoulder and a bronze on the other. The barkeep must know her well enough, for a bottle and a glass appear on the bar when she’s only a few steps in, a measure poured for her to retrieve on her way past. Dark eyes scan the room until they locate Akemi, narrowing when they see that she’s not the only one sat at that table, the presence of another something that slows her eventual approach. “I don’t recall saying that it was acceptable to bring along friends,” she utters lowly, once she reaches it. The shrug of her shoulder sends Inferno to find a high point from which to observe. “If this is an ambush, I hardly need tell you that it’ll take more than two of you.”

Akio’s brows lift as he takes in the sight of Jet’s entrance, the reality of //who// this person is dawning on him as the woman approaches. “No ambush,” he tells her, rising as he offers her a bow, a silver object on his hip glinting as the flash of lights hit the metal. “Her brother. In place of firelizards,” he adds, smirking at Jet before he eases himself back into the seat. Akemi leans forward, moving an arm across Akio to silence any further comment. “It’s done,” she tells Jet, “And what we’ve come to tell you has importance to you. I should hope you don’t seek a fight with me because I brought my brother along to this establishment.” There’s a hardness in her eyes. “This information I have has to do with your family. I am not bringing it to you as a threat, but an offer of peace. If you want to hear it, sit. If I’ve offended you, we’ll leave.” She shrugs, leaning back in her chair as her arms cross in front of her. “It’s your choice.”

Fira hisses as Jet catches sight of that glint of steel, her gaze turning positively murderous as the greenrider stares down at Akemi. “You had better hope that he doesn’t think to use that and you reconsider attempting to use the threat of my family against me,” she says oh so very slowly. “You’re the one who started us down this path, bluerider. I really wouldn’t start playing power games now. You’re in a little too deep for that.” She sets her glass down on the table and lazily pulls out a chair in which to sit. “You’d better start talking. There’s a price on the head of anyone with one of those, besides.” Jet directs a nod towards Akio, Fira’s focus lingering on that shiny object. “So, I’ll thank you for bringing it to my attention.” That’s for Akio, her smirk a more shallow, crueller version of his own.

Akemi throws a savage glare at Akio. “I told you not to bring that around,” she hisses at her brother, teeth barred in frustration as Maozheth’s roar outside shatters any chance of Akemi hiding her frustration. She turns to Jet. “Your daughter came to me,” she tells Jet, knowing better than to play any further games. Her hand moves to grab on to Akio’s thigh and squeeze to keep him silent. “She wants to know where she can meet you. She was very upset that I would not bring her directly. I had thought you’d want a chance to consider the fact you’ve a brownrider daughter hunting you down. Forgive me for being so forward as to consider your upset had I brought her here with me.” She reaches for her beer and downs it in one gulp. “She takes after you, extremely argumentative and disagreeable.” She can’t help but deliver that bite of sarcasm as she levels her gaze on Jet’s. “How would you like me to proceed?”

Jet gives a huff of dry laughter. “My daughter? I can assure you that she’s not only not old enough to Stand, but has never left the Court unless in my company or her father’s.” She lifts her own glass and downs its contents. “I suggest that you take care as to what you listen to, in the future, though you’re right not to have brought anyone directly. If it’s me they’re intent on doing damage to, I don’t doubt that they’d have no second thoughts about what would happen to the messenger.” At least Fira has quieted, though facets still whirl orange. “You can tell this imposter that they’re wasting their time. If we’re talking of someone old enough to Stand and Impress, I would have had to be little more than a child myself when I birthed them. Surely that’s clue enough that they’re lying.”

“Her name is Arlet and she called Honshu Weyrhold her home until recently. She’s now Fort’s Weyrleader. If you truly believe her to be an imposter, it seems like that would be an extravagant lie for someone. I hope it doesn’t mean Fort will continue to suffer from problems,” Akemi responds without hesitation. “I don’t have any need to lie to you. What work we did together is done, paid for, and I’ve moved on. I had hoped to bring you this information for your benefit and in the future, were I to be in need of a favor of information, you’d share it with me.” She looks to her brother, “My brother also may be someone who has information that would benefit your..,” she pauses, feeling the word in her mind before she says, “Court.” She stares at Jet, waiting for her to answer.

There’s a flicker of recognition at the name supplied, yet otherwise Jet remains rather unreadable, either unwilling to buy into what she’s been told or simply determined not to supply anyone with a potentially profitable reaction. “I’d heard it was a woman,” is what she chooses to say instead. “About time someone showed the bronzeriders what’s what.” She clears her throat. “At any rate, there’s no need for you to contact this girl if I can make an appointment with Fort’s new Weyrleader myself. And if you ask me, the further you stay from that Weyr, the better. You’ve got a daughter of your own to think about now, rumour has it. Don’t get mixed up in what goes on in that place.” Her attention darts to Akio, head tilting slightly. “Information or not, you’re either stupid or too full of bravado if you think bringing that thing here was a good idea. They’ve slaughtered nearly everyone else who knows anything about them.”

Akemi rises, one hand moving to settle on her brothers shoulder and keep him in his seat. The pair of them look younger than they are – but neither have had enough life experiences to fully be prepared for someone as sharp-witted and sharp-tongued as Jet. Akemi’s face is emotionless as she states, “I am Lady Akemi of Silverfield. I’d appreciate it if you kept your opinions of where and who I should meet with to yourself. We are fully aware that those who slaughtered the Smithcrafts have been dealt with. They’ve been dumped Between for their crimes. Are you implying you’d solicit my brother’s murder for showing a weapon of worth? I didn’t think you were short-sighted. We will leave you.” Akio rises, lips thin in a grimace and eyes sharp as he takes in Jet’s face. “Perhaps I’m stupid. Or perhaps I know that what I have to offer is more than most.” He takes Akemi by the elbow and turns to leave, each of them prepared to say nothing of a goodbye as they head out of the establishment. The barkeep comes over, delivering Jet’s drinks and watching the two twins depart. “Squirrely sort, aren’t they?” she comments, full mouth puckering in a smirk. “Too high strung for the sorts that like to come here.”

Jet’s sigh is more one of resignation than anything else, her reaction as Akemi and Akio carry themselves off ultimately not one, for she doesn’t even glance after them as they go. “They don’t know how to play the long game,” she remarks to the barkeep once they’re out of earshot. “It’s all or nothing. Yes or not. Right or wrong. Threats and offense and nothing tangible.” And still she doesn’t react to what she’s been told about her supposed daughter. From her pocket, she draws a series of high denomination mark pieces, offering them up to her. “Make sure they’re thrown out next time they show up. They come here again, they’re apt to get themselves into trouble and worse. I’d rather they felt slighted than ended up dead.” Up in the rafters, Inferno blinks Between just as Jet gets to her feet, downing her next drink as almost an afterthought. “You didn’t hear any of what she said,” she insists. “And you certainly didn’t hear her announce her station.” Trusting that the money will be enough, she makes her way out of the bar and to close the distance to Kyramith on foot, heading home to finally let herself consider what twist of fate has placed a girl with her daughter’s name at the head of Fort Weyr.

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