It's The Little Things

It's The Little Things

If asked, Jasper wouldn't have been able to tell anyone how Ruve had survived without him and, if the questioner was determined enough to hold him over coals for an hour or so, he might've admitted that she'd only done so while sacrificing health and a social life. It never ceased to amaze him how a woman so bright and sharp could forget so many things.

Too many things bouncing around in her mind, that was the problem. She got snared on the details and fixated on those without keeping the big picture in mind. Which was funny, as she continually made broad sweeping connections between numerous things. She seemed determined, though, to forget other things, like her lunch date with Sam.

Sure, he could've let her miss it, or be surprised, but that'd be rude. One couldn't go around insulting their allies and friends, not and expect to keep them. Besides, he liked Sam and, since he was going to be around for the meeting whether he got invited or not, it'd be good to touch base with her. And double check to ensure she wasn't thinking about stabbing him. Or Ravan. The probabilities on her blade ending up in his gut were slim, but with the Chosen of Helm, it paid to be sure.

So, after leaving Ravan (and instructions to the house so he could find it come lunch time), Jasper hit the market. It wasn't a proper Jamean market by any stretch of the imagination, but that was alright. He'd already singled out the best stalls and begun work on getting on their owner's good sides. It didn't take long before he had lunch's materials ready, then hauled it back to the house.

The women were in one of the back rooms, no doubt with their noses stuck in scrolls and books. Maybe Ruve'd get one of those black swipes across her face - the thought made him grin and entertained him while cooking and cleaning. By the time noon got close, he'd managed to finish the meal (salad and soup served in a bread bowl) and get the place cleaned up again.

Sam tried to shake off any lingering negativity before reaching the house where Ruvria and Jasper where staying. It might not matter; Tobias was a subject still too close for comfort, even after six months. Still, she managed to put on a smile as she knocked on the door.


Ravan, having recieved his directions from Jasper, arrived promptly at lunchtime. He'd dressed, cleaned and shaved, his clothing sober and practical as opposed to the more formal attire he'd worn to the wedding. He knocked on the door, surprised to be feeling a mild sense of trepidation. He worked *with* people often enough, but from what little he'd seen, this group was more family than a team of professionals, making him a definite outsider. Besides that, they weren't the sort of family he was used to dealing with. Of course he would also have been forced to admit that his family, and the other Great Houses, were neither exemplars of close-knit family behavior or exactly typical, even within Jamean culture.

He noticed a woman of martial bearing waiting at the door. He took a second look, blinking, and realized from descriptions he'd had that this was Helm's Chosen, He bowed formally to her. "Good afternoon. My name is Ravan Varamitra. May I assume that Jasper has spoken of me?"

Sam noticed the man from the night before approaching but didn't appear to respond. She was certain he'd introduced himself before, but she had been distracted and couldn't for the life of her remember his name, so it was good that introduced himself. At the same time, nice manners bugged her. She smiled anyway, "I'm afraid not. Jasper and I aren't very close. My name is Samantha Thatcher. Please call me Sam."

As if his name summoned him, Jasper swung the door open and broke into a grin. "Come on in, then. Ruve n' Aurelia are up, but head deep n' dusty papers. I'm gettin' them out, though." He stepped to the side to let them in. There wasn't a sign of the owners of the house - they must be already out about their business.


Ravan nodded, a wry smile on his lips. "I thank you, Sam." It would be impolitic to comment on the fact that he'd been briefed on her already. Stepping into the doorway, he nodded to Jasper. His face sober, he said. "It seems you've neglected to inform your friend about me. Sloppy. I might have caught them unawares." There might have been the barest hint of a smile in his voice, if not on his face.

Sam entered and looked around, giving Jasper a slightly dubious look. She couldn't help but wonder what Ravan thought needed sharing about himself. If he used charm to lure people into a false sense of security, it was already too late.

"I can get Ruvria and Aurelia out here if you'd like."

Jasper smirked. "You're not that menacing," he said, waving the two in. "Thanks, Sam. You'll deal with Ruve better than, I suspect. Let em know that food's up n' I won't take kindly to it goin' cold, yeah?" With that, he disappeared back into the kitchen.

Sam chuckled as Jasper disappeared. "I had meant to do it the easy way, but I suppose I could go talk to them instead." She wasn't exactly talking to anyone, but she smiled conspiratorially at Ravan anyway and went for a closed door. There didn't seem to be any reason to knock, so she just walked right in.


Ravan settled in, standing in place but looking relatively at ease - although he radiated a sense of quiet alertness as well. He nodded to Sam's smile, but made no move to follow her. Better to let everyone gather in the main room when they were ready than put their backs up by invading a private space.


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