Day 014: Reporting To The Bear
Summary: In which Que, Tuan and Gideon report to the steheda about their expedition to observe the delinquents.
Date: 23 5 2016
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None' — please, don't leave blank!
Oxfor Que Tuan Gideon 

Steheda's Hall

This room is a sprawling, octagon-shaped room that acts as both the staheda's hall and a gathering place to discuss village issues and decisions. It's main access point is a pair of reinforced doors that swing inward invitingly. There is a large round window just above the doors which allows low afternoon light to stream in during the day. There are several windows along the angled, adjacent walls on either side of the doors, but their glass has been painted in a thin layer of colorful paint. Inside, the marble floors have lost their polish, but they still hold the ghost of a woman in a blue Roman-style dress, standing withe spear over the words Sic Semper Tyrannis.

The ceilings of the room are high, and the light emerges from a great firelit chandelier hanging at the center of the domed roof. Directly across the doors, on the opposite side of the room, is a series of short steps that lead to a massive chair sitting before a wall of stained glass.

A corridor leads off deeper into the structure off the back-right wall.

Day 14

It was morning on Day 14, not that the Grounders really count their time that way, but that would be the day after the Coesbur counter-delegation arrived to take a measure of the Delinquents. Either way, Que had a conversation with Grey outside the gate, and suddenly a very quiet, stoney and intent looking Que came back and declared it was time to return. His explanation? That this matter was now one that he thought concerned the Heda. He didn't do a great deal of talking on the way back, and Que being Que, is quite adept at being quiet when he wants to be.

To say that Tuan was surprised at the sudden turn of situations and their almost hasty return to Coesbur would be an understatement, but he had learned a lot time ago that sometimes the best comments were the ones not made. Having packed up quickly he was on the path with the others during the return, mentally chewing over the things he had seen, conversations he had had and information gleaned from the extremely short visit. All of this done as well quietly, although he did often cast glances at the others while returning, unasked questions in his eyes.

Gideon had been quite surprised by Que's demands, but obeyed. Oxfor made him the leader of this small group after all, and she respects that. She also respects not asking too many questions, so she is also quiet most of the journey back. She shrugs a bit when Tuan looks her way, but assumes that they will know what is what once they are back at their village.

When they do return, they will find Oxfor outside the Seat, speaking with the healer Keta. He looks up when the three arrive, and he frowns slightly with his own concern. He had not expected them back so soon.

After Que dismounts, he leaves everything with the horse for now and makes straight for the Hell. Nearing to Oxfor, he gives a nod of his head, "Steheda." Que's voice is respectful and quiet, but firm. He glances at Keta and gives her a respectful nod as well, but then as he looks around them he says, "It is necessary that we speak in private, steheda." He glances back and nods slightly to Gideon and Tuan, clearly not intending 'private' to exclude them.

At least Tuan is included in the private and he nods back towards Que. There is a good look around the village when they return, casting eyes about to see if anything has changed in the two days and checking for a few people that may be lurking before he resumes focus on the hall.

Oxfor frowns deeply at Que's words, and then he nods. "Of course, Que… come." He gestures for them to follow the hulking man into the Seat. The doors have been open to let in the warm air of late spring, but he will wait for all three to file in before he quietly closes them. He glances over his shoulder to the three, speaking over his shoulder, "You sound serious, Que… I take it your interactions with the Skaikru have not gone… well?"

Gideon is following after, and is the last to enter and thus steps aside to allow the Steheda to close the doors.

Once they are inside, Que looks around, and then focuses on Oxfor, "I have made observations that I think are of use to you in the Summit— and we can share that later— but this morning I learned of a matter that I judged may be of concern to the Commander, and that you may judge she needs to be made aware of as soon as possible. That is why I decided to return. In addition, I judged that you may wish to alter — or cancel — our orders to … observe the skaikru, so I brought the others back with me." Que purses his lips, seeming very serious, but he finally adds, "Their warriors in the sky, the.." A pause, and he adds in english, "Guard." A tightening of his lips follows once more in their language, "When they come down from the sky, they will be bringing guns with them /in number/ — and they speak of possibly bringing a challenge to the Mountain Men with them." Que doesn't seem afraid of this, he's like a stone giving a report, but he seems to find this matter /very/ serious.

Tuan looks at Que as he gives his report, listening intently. The young man knows to let others speak but for the sake of time adds once Que has finished. "I was able to be brought into their area of metal and wires. The one I spoke with said how their machines could provide them food and other tools, including defenses and I would presume offenses from the sky." The supplement added, Tuan falls quiet once more.

Oxfor sits, sinking into his chair with a mild groan — of the chair, not the steheda. He listens to Que as he delivers his report, and the chief's face becomes more and more troubled. Then his fist flexes, fingers tight within the grip. His mouth sets at the word guns, and his frown deepens as the Mountain Men are brought into it. "No," he says tersely, shaking his head, "We do not mess with the Mountain. The Reapers continue to snatch anyone who comes close, but the Mountain Men have not retaliated against us in many years. We stay away, they are content…"

Oxfor then looks over at Tuan as he speaks of technology, and his mouth loosens a bit. He rubs at his massive jaw, worrying at a small scar beneath his chin. "Defenses from the sky?" He looks a bit weary. "And offenses? Do you think they could attack us from up there?"

The archer is quiet for several moments, listening to the words from Que and Tuan. Then she turns to Oxfor and offers a small, but serious frown. "Steheda, I honestly think they are willing to listen to us, and heed our warnings… but we have told them little, and refuse them vital information. Shouldn't we open these talks from a place of full disclosure instead of maintaining secrecy?" Though she knows this will earn her a glare, she seems ready for it.

Que looks back at Gideon, and gives a slight shake of his head in disagreement, "I tried to impress upon Greh kom Skaikru that the Mountain Men were a serious danger, and that they respond to the slightest provocation with overwhelming force. I told him that the Mountain does not simply kill those who cross it, but those who know them, and those who know them. The skaikru are strange. They fear /me/ and treat me like some dangerous rabid warrior ready to attack them at any time, but they show no fear when I tell them what is truly dangerous on this world." That said, he adds, tone troubled, "Their city is powered by nuclears, and one of them spoke of studying missiles… though I am somewhat leaning in the direction of believing that girl was touced by madness. Greh seemed to be quite adamant that they would use and make neither thing."

Tuan looks at the others then shakes his head, "I did not draw that impression. I believe it to be more of these things being available when as Que said the others join from the sky." He falls quiet again before looking at Gideon and hesitating a moment. "They have not been forthcoming either."

Oxfor looks between Gideon and Que, and he nods solemnly. "We must stick to holding on tightly to what we know, and being very careful with what we share… they are still a possible enemy… they could be here to work with the Mountain for all we know." He frowns as he leans forward, elbows resting on his heavy knees. He stares between his fingers as his hands come together, looking thoughtful. Then he starts to wring his hands together, feeling the rough and calloused skin. "Guns… missiles…" He shakes his head. "I know that they have been eager to learn about us… particularly our medicinal techniques… and they wish to learn how to survive down here. That much is clear. But their disorganized state… their criminal pasts… I fear we have been sent their Exiles." He looks at Que now. "And you are sure they are indeed all coming down from the sky?"

Gideon grunts slightly at Que's words, though she just crosses her arms and nods. "I agree… they do not easily show fear. Not most of them at least…"

"I can not be absolutely certain, steheda, but I believe as many as can possibly come down from the sky, will do so. The problem is, they will not admit to how many that is. It seems that anyone who remains in the sky will die. They are desperate. That makes them dangerous— but it also makes them stand summit from a weak position." Que purses his lips, folding his own hands together, and cracking a knuckle loudly. "I do believe they have knowledge that would strengthen village and clan, if they can be trusted. These lost lores of theirs seem real— and they have at least one maker in their camp of some skill, their wall is well made if pointless."

Oxfor is serious when he looks between Gideon and Que, and then he shakes his head slowly. "Then it seems that this is something that must be part of our side of the Summit." He grunts slightly, and then runs a hand up over his shorn skull, following the deep grooves of his scars. "I have one more question…" He looks more at Que now, and Gideon dips her head a bit as she slips into silence.

Nodding in agreement, Que cracks another knuckle before crossing his arms over his chest. At the last mention of the question his head cocks to the side, "Yes, steheda?"

"You have seen their camp… do you believe that any agreement reached will be fully honored by everyone in their skaigeda?" He tilts his head a bit. "And more importantly, do you think it would be honored by their Skaiheda?" He folds his fingers together.

Que frowns. He doesn't answer immediately, his arms tightening, and he thinks over the question seriously. "They run around like squirrels trying to protect their nuts when the wolves come, not realizing the wolves will eat them and have no interest in their nuts." Que certainly likes that analogy. "In truth, I can not answer either way, steheda. They are simply too alien to understand. I think some of them are capable of honor, even if they've been dishonorable in the past. I think some of them are foolish children who need to be disciplined. But they want to survive, steheda, and they are willing to fight to do it. It says something about a man that he does not lie down and accept death but fights against it with everything he has." He shrugs slightly, "I am only a maker, a simple man. I do not have to bear the burden of my peoples lives resting on my shoulders. But I think I would make peace with them and trade, but in doing so, I would watch carefully and be prepared. We can not know if they can be trusted because they are so unlike us, but we can never know them if we do not try. If they prove worthy of the trust, we learn things that strengthen the clans. If they do not, we kill them all. But there are reasons I was not chosen steheda."

He grunts, after saying all that. So many words. Que looks a little tired from speaking.

"Everybody knows wolves don't like nuts," Oxfor rumbles deeply, and for a moment seems amused. Then he sobers again, and breathes out a heavy sigh that sinks him further into his seat. "Do not discredit yourself, Que… a simple man is sometimes what a situation needs." He then nods steadily. "Alright… thank you… thank you all." He looks at Gideon and Tuan as well. "I should send a messenger to Indra…" He grimaces. "I had wished to wait until I had more to say, but…"

"If you do visit their village, do not allow the one named Mee-mee-ya to speak to you. She will drown you in words until you forget your own name." Que looks positively pained about this, shaking his head and grunting, before he nods his head respectfully, "The world is changing again, as it always does. Peace with Azgeda? Unthinkable. Now we will war or make peace with the sky. We will do what we must do." And with that, he intends on making his way out, and going to go make a chair, something that makes sense to him.

Oxfor looks up to Que at his advice, and he nods. "I will remember that," he says wryly. Then he grimaces at the words about the Azgeda. "At least we had an idea of what to expect with the Azgeda came down from the North… this is…" He shakes his head, falling into silence. Then he nods again. "See to yourselves… we will see what the Skaikru can offer… and what they truly want in return."

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