MOO Time: 2010-08-12 19:36:32
Internet Time: @67 beats
And on Pern ...
The time is 17:36.
It is evening of the fourth day of autumn.
It is the seventeenth Turn of the Tenth Interval.
It is an autumn evening.
The Trial of The Century is beginning, Veldara vs Istan Harper Hall with a tribunal headed by Master Harper of Pern Civur. All of Pern is invited to watch the high profile case, there are even galleries for those to watch and chatter while not disrupting the trial! To get there @go Fort Hold, Ramp, Archway, HH, Great Hall, Court (Or @go fort hold, w, sw, sw, nw, ne)!
-- entered by Schmendrick on 2010-08-12 17:01 MOO Time.
Players: Veldara, Civur, Schmendrick, Danolan and assorted audience.
Stadium seating forms an almost circle around the lower level floor of the courtroom. The stone is carved into flat benches that form concentric rings from the base, each new bench a few feet above the previous and rising up to fifty or so feet. There are various blue-velvet cushions scattered to provide comfortable seating for those lucky enough to grab them. The walls are covered in various tapestries of Harper Craft origin, ranging from blue harps to scenes depicting trials of infamy. In addition to the general seating, there are two higher balcony boxes carved into the walls that act as special seating for higher ranked observers. Glowlamps are plentiful around the smoothly carved stone walls to provide ample light, in addition there is a large rectangular window that lays above the judge's bench, which possesses rusted iron shutters as protection from Thread, that allows in a large quantity of natural light during the day. A path leads north from the courtroom entrance down a ramp to a small gate that separates the gallery seating from the main floor (often guarded during actual proceedings).
OOC: To look at the main floor type 'view on floor' or to look at anything type 'view <object> on floor'.
On the court floor, you see two people.
Alesa and Nherys are here.
On the main floor...
Several feet below the gallery that surrounds, the main floor of the courtroom is quite small and provides only enough room for the few individuals that are necessary to conduct a trial. In the very middle of the floor is a stone-carved podium that acts as a presentation site for those individuals on trial, the surface of the podium possesses a small glow lamp to allow for the individual to be well lit. The path from the entrance gate to the podium is lined with a fine Harper blue rug to protect from the cold of the smooth stone. On either side, sitting against the front of the gallery seats, are numerous high-backed chairs meant to be occupied by various Harpers and other legal members associated with the case. To the north of the floor is a large stone structure that rises five feet above the ground and functions as the judge's bench, a small tapestry rolls down the front bearing the Harper symbol with a gavel superimposed over it. On either side of the bench are a set benches that act as seating for any optional jury present to the trial. The numerous glows that line the furthest walls of the court room cast shadows across the floor of the room. Behind the bench lays a tall rectangular window that provides natural light.
Veldara, Schmendrick, Civur, and Danolan are here.
Cothia walks in from the Harper Great Hall.
T'ab is wandering a little lost, guided by some poor female journeyman that he's hooked into giving him direction, "Ahh, thank ya Miss, and may I say you look absolutely lovely for this day." The bronzerider pats the woman's arm before starting to crawl through the benches, looking to give a little booty dance to anyone he manages to pass in front of.
Fintan walks in from the Harper Great Hall.
Issri recognizes T'ab's booty just after she recognizes his voice, and she gives him a smack as he goes by. "Hey, down in front," she says, her voice light and teasing even as she's standing and offering the bronzerider a hug. "Long time no see!" On her shoulder, Hawk curls his tail more snugly around her neck, watching the activity around them with a wary and suspicious gaze.
T'ab chuckles as he gets his rear end smacked by the Herder, "Ah, Miss Issri, lovely to see ya." And he returns to hug before returning to beside the woman, "It /has/ been a while, bein' busy with wing stuff and all..." And then his blue eyes carry off to the Trial, "I'm here ta be seein' the Trial, takin' notes for ol' 'Baji."
From the court floor, For those milling about in the courtroom, the long wait is over. The trial starts with a bit of a flourish; actually, just kidding, just the hacking cough of one MasterHarper as he enters the room. He comes from an unmarked entrance on the floor, his flashy academic-y robes billowing out behind him like some Hogwarts wizard. He moves swiftly to the middle of the room, clears his throat to quiet the audience and waves his hands in a motion that means for everyone to sit and to shut up. "We call this court to order. Please sit." He turns to take a seat at the middle or the long table at the back of the courtroom floor, and as he does, some other important Harpers move to take their seat too. Here be the council of Harper Elders to judge ye' Veldara's fate. Cue everything else.
Alesa arrives with a gaggle of her younger mentees, giving them strict instructions, "Remember, no hooting or hollering..." She pauses, for dramatic effect, "Or booing, or throwing things. This trip is for you to see our legal system in /action/ and you'll be asked to write a report on the trial for one of your classes, likely." She glowers at one male apprentice who is poking two of the females, "/DUBAN/. You are to sit right next to me, on the other side of the girls..." She takes her seat exasperatedly, and looks about for her older mentees, specifically Cothia et al.
Issri sits down beside T'ab, lifting a hand to rub a soothing finger along Hawk's muzzle. "Oh yeah? I was delivering some hens and thought I'd pop in. Never seen a trial before." She shrugs. "Not sure if I'll stay or not." IE: If this is boring, she'll slip out. Leaning over, she gently bumps T'ab's shoulder. "We should go get something to drink afterwards," she whispers. "Catch up and all." But as stuff starts to happen below, she quiets down so she's not a distraction to him and his note taking.
Mentee-less at the moment, but no less a presence for all that the blonde of her hair is silvering, Nherys takes a seat. She is silent, for the moment, fine eyebrows lifted as she focuses her attention on the courtroom floor. It is not her first trial, but then again -- they all work out a little differently, don't they?
Fintan would not normally have been bothered to come to this sort of thing but it was an educational experience and having an extra hand with the apprentices never hurts. So Fintan has actually gotten himself sorted out and doesn't look like he just got himself out of bed for once. Casually he takes a seat with a few of the junior apprentices seat near him, giving them a look if they even begin to make noises they shouldn't.
Cothia is not lingering behind, generally curious and following behind Alesa. When the Journeyman looks her way the woman straightens just so before moving to quietly take a seat. Hands are folded in her lap, note taking device clutched there and she looks to watch the proceedings with much interest while also prepping to take notes.
Daegan walks in from the Harper Great Hall.
From the court floor, Two quite burly guards provide a very special escort of Veldara. Instead of her usual finery, the woman looks far more subdued in a pewter sisal robe, belted at her waist with a frayed belt. Her hair has been braided about her head and an off white hood protects it. Odd splatters of dye and moisture complete her ensemble. Laundry day, anyone? The guards, who are at her left and right side escort her to a position, right infront of the judge. Her lips, thin and her face is blank of all emotion as she faces the Masterharper silently.
From the court floor, Schmendrick walks in from another entrance, his clothing perfectly cleaned and lacking any single crease or wrinkle, although his eyes have slight dark bags below them hinting that he may have stayed up all night with planning for the trial /and/ cleaning (and recleaning) his outfit to guarantee perfection. The Journeyman's walk is slow and his face initially stares at his feet to verify that he avoids all cracked in the stone floor. Senior Apprentice Danolan arrives right behind the Journeyman, bearing the various hides and books and even a small vial of redwort cleaning solution for Schmendrick's particular requests. The Journeyman then motions for his mentee to stand next to the table and his blue eyes land on two individuals right behind the prosecutor's table, "Err... if it isn't an inconvenience, could you switch seats... more... uh... color coordinated." But an elbow to the side from Danolan gets Schmenny to turn and appropriately face Civur.
T'ab nods slowly to Issri, whispering over to the woman, "Definitely, though I'll be needin' you to check and make sure I ain't sleepin' in the middle of this. Ain't got much sleep since my new baby." Then his eyes grow big and he turns to the Herder, "Oh shards, I didn't tell you me and Miss Rishk have a new son, did we? I'm so sorry."
Issri startles visibly at T'ab's news, and she pokes him in the side. Hard. "T'AB," she hisses, her eyes darting around to see if she's going to get in trouble for her low-volume-outburst. "You didn't /tell/ me?!" She gives the bronzerider a good glare, and then her expression softens. "Congratulations," she whispers. "I'm so happy for you. What's his name?"
From the court floor, "Right," Civur mutters, mulling through some of his papers on the desk in front of him. His brows furrow, he clears his throat again, and turns to pour himself a glass of water from a pitcher left on the table for him. There is, ironically, no drinks for Schmendrick or Veldara. "Now, lets get this over with as fast as possible--" he mutters, rising to his feet and rummaging through his papers before clearing his throat again. "Now, Craftmaster Veldara--as you know, you have been charged with money embezzlement, obstruction of financial records, flagrant misuse of your title and rank, and most importantly, the misue of Harper Hall coffers. These are graa-ve charges." He beings a hand up to remove his glasses and eye the woman. "How do you plead to them?"
Alesa clenches just a little as Veldara enters, apparently this lady does not evoke happy feelings in the blonde Journeywoman. For /some/ reason. She gratefully looks over to Fintan and Cothia, feeling reassured that they will help keep the younger folks in order. Murmuring to Cothia, "This is something that will definitely be written up for the archives, no matter the outcome." And look, there's an archivist taking notes, right over there! Some 40something mousy brown haired woman in pants that do not flatter her figure.
"Krabbit, another rider named him actually... 'though Miss Rishk is a bit more involved than Jeala." T'ab smirks toward Issri, "Been a few months now." Then the bronzerider nods toward to Veldara, "I think... I hit on her once, real drunk, before... sober I don't think that was a good idea."
From the court floor, Veldara does not move one muscle as the Masterharper rummages through his papers gives a synopsis of the charges. After he is finished, the woman looks Civur directly in the eyes, with her tired-looking slate blue orbs still showing no emotion. Only two words escape from her lips at this time, as she rubs her neck. It is slightly sore from that lumpy prison bedding. Hardly the down feather mattress and pillows she is used to. "Not guilty." Two simple words with heavy implications, if proven wrong. And then, she utters only one thing more, "I will, of course be representing myself."
Lanti strides in from the Harper Great Hall.
Daegan settles down out of the way, staying quiet and out of any conversations for the time being, head tilting a bit as he listens to the proceedings, a meatroll from a beltpouch munched on as his firelizards settle down around him in silence.
Issri smiles, "Krabbit. That's adorable. Congratulations, T'ab. A son. And I'm glad his mother is involved." There's a brief frown for the never-met-but-already-disliked Jeala. "Are all your children going to have double-b names?" She looks over to Veldara, and presses her lips together to stifle a laugh. It's there in her hazel eyes, though, bright and amused.
From the court floor, "Very well. And who will be representing the defense?" The Masterharper's eyes rove across
the courtroom floor, landing on Schmendrick with a quirk of his lips and very dramatic eyebrow raise. That's your cue Schmendy.
From the court floor, Schmendrick glances to Veldara at her pronouncement and his face seems to twitch out a slight smile, which swiftly disappears once he is addressed. "Journeyman Schmendrick, Law and Diplomacy specialist, and Senior Apprentice Danolan, my assistant, are representing the defense on behalf of the Istan Harper Hall." The Journeyman wrings his hands momentarily, his eyes flickering over Civur's form and stalling over a small wrinkle on the man's shoulder.
Cothia blinks at Alesa owlishly, "yes.. Of course ma'am... I'm taking notes for... Well, I'd feel bad just sitting idle..." She admits. Her attention flickers forward to the court floor, watching intently as she moves to write notes as each person speaks.
"Well, wasn't exactly on purpose this time around, but I am partial to the double b's... I can't help but smile whenever I say Krabbit or Jabba and I rather like that feeling." T'ab whispers to his friend, still staring at the trial ongoing, "Yeah, I dunno what I was thinkin'. Oh, just so /you/ know, I totally helped arrest that woman. It was pretty embarrassin' at her own party."
Issri grins, shaking her head, "You really can't /help/ but smile when you say them, can you? They suit children of yours. Hopefully I'll get to meet him sometime soon." It's half question, half statement. "You arested her, really? At her own party? I don't know anything about this trial."
T'ab nods his head slowly as he points to Danolan and Schmendrick, "Aye, the Journeyman gathered Ji'n and I, since we're guards, to arrest her at some Harper beach party and take her off to the holding cell here." The bronzerider just shrugs and leans back on the bench, "She was stealin' money or somethin' from the Harpers, she wouldn't stop complainin' the whole flight here." But then his vision flicker over to Issri with a grin, "And a'course you'll get to meet Krabbit, he has a few more months before he can between but already he likes dragons."
Brethion walks in from the Harper Great Hall.
Issri smiles, "I should bring Ricci and Sriella - and Eric - here," she says softly, leaning in close to T'ab so she doesn't (hopefully) disrupt the proceedings below. "We can all have a little get together. I'm sure Ricci misses his girlfriend," she says, winking and grinning. She looks down at the woman on trial and frowns. "Huh."
Brethion steps in, trying to be quiet about it for fairly obvious reasons, and shuffles along the nearest bench with a free space, muttering apologies for any toes accidentally stepped on. When he finds enough room to park his backside, he drops into place quickly, plants his elbows on his knees and his chin on his hands. This is rapt attention, see.
From the court floor, Veldara removes her hood and fluffs out her hair, just a bit. It is one of her /best/ features, after all. Hood is placed on a nearby table. "Ladies and gentlemen of the jury..." An ingratiating smile takes hold of her thin lips as she does a deep curtsey to the audience and jury (standing catty corner, of sorts). "And, our esteemed MasterHarper Civur. /Thank/ you so much for hearing my case today. I am aware of the grave charges against me, but I am sure as you will see, it was all a misunderstanding. I have labored for turns to keep scrupulous records of all the Harper Hall's inventory and purchases, but sometimes, that is not enough. There are very unsavory people in this world, and sadly, I have been a victim. I have been a victim of the misguided affections of someone who thought to shower me with gifts, and force me to accept them for the good of the hall. The Crom Lord Holder,Teshel has had his sights set on me for years. He wanted me to accept tokens of his affections with the promise of making generous donations to the hall for the betterment of all. Sadly, this never happened. I did not want to accept his advances, I mean, think of his poor wife? I am just a sad victim with nothing but the best intentions, and he..is a foul miscreant who obviously wanted revenge after I severed contact with him."
From the court floor, "Veldara, you wait to be address." Civur rumbles gravely, his serious face getting even more serious, and he's turning to wave off the angry glance of his fellow Harpers at the table with him. "But if you want to go and introduce yourself without my permission, then I guess we should just keep going." He pinches the bridge of his nose with a sigh. "Get this over with. Schmendrick. Go. Now."
Daegan shakes his head a bit as he listens to the words from Veldara, frowning just slightly as his chin is propped up on a fist and his elbow on his knee. He hasn't said anything as he listens to the testimony sighing softly
Zilurana runs in from the Harper Great Hall.
From the court floor, "Thank you... uh... Master Harper." Schmendrick initially touches a hide but then nods to Danolan, who hands him the redwort vial, "Uh... one moment." Then the Journeyman does a ritualistic cleaning of his hands before he picks up the hide and steps away from the seats to look directly at the tribunal of harpers, "I echo the Defendent's thank you to the entire jury for your participation in this fair trial. On behalf of the Harper Hall, I will be bringing forth hard /evidence/ that suggests that the Master not only misappropriated funds from the Main Harper Hall but did it maliciously and without regard to the financial health of the Istan Harper Hall." His eyes go over to Master Veldara, narrowing slightly, "Simply, she /stole/ from the Hall to fulfill her lavish lifestyle, misused the title of 'Master' to gain things she otherwise would not have. And I call upon you all, the /unbiased/ jury, to bring down justice upon this woman."
"Not a good start," Brethion murmurs to the woman sitting next to him, who doesn't know him and clearly shows that by looking at him oddly before offering a non-committal 'hmm' and a nod. Brethion doesn't seem discouraged though and adds, "Makes for good watching though, eh?" The woman inches away ever so slightly. Brethion drums his fingers on his chin for a moment, before rummaging in the bag he'd brought in with him and tossed on the floor at his feet. He pulls out a small bit of hide, determined to take a few notes, it seems.
From the court floor, "Thank you Journeyman Schmendrick." Civur coughs into his hand, waving off the defending Harper with a bit of a look. "Now, Master Veldara. Please argue your case to us. Your argument, your defense of these actions. What do you have to prove that Journeyman Schmendrick is wrong?" The Masterharper's face is one of complete and utter blankness.
T'ab nods his head, "And she has a mean left hook, I'm a bit surprised she isn't all chained up. Tried to run /away/ from two riders with dragons, luckily Dyz cornered her off." And Tyroth sat there and looked pretty. "Jabba is growin' up too much for my taste, soon she'll not be wantin' to go on surfin' trips with her pa."
Issri smiles softly at T'ab, nodding her head. "They grow up so fast," she whispers, and a genuine sadness pulls down at the woman's voice. She sighs. "But," she then says, pushing a smile onto her lips, "I'm sure she'll always love you, even if her behaviors change. I am...not at all looking forward to when Ricci doesn't want to sit next to me, or doesn't run to hug me when I pick him up from the Harpers."
From the court floor, "Yes Master Harper. Thank you." Veldara nods, and then begins her argument. "Malicious? Hardly. I have been giving my heart and soul to this Craft for /decades/....my whole life from the age of 14 turns onward, in fact." Her posture improves a bit, she is /proud/ of this fact. "I have been an asset and a credit to our illustrious crafthall, and would never /dream/ of such an action. It has been.." She pauses, as tears form in her eyes, "Such a burden since Ylisa had to leave the Crafthall. She was always such a help to me. And my assistants I had to work with!" She starts to sniffle a little more, "Don't even get me /started/. Such incompetent fools. It was a wonder they could even get dressed in the morning. But I spent time to train them, to make sure they could contribute to the Hall and make it /shine/. It breaks my heart.." And now some more tears flow. "That such charges would be levied against me. That such people would go to such efforts to /frame/ me..when I've.done..so much..for the hall.." her nose and the tears are freely flowing now. "Excuse me.." she blows her nose again. "I need a minute.."
From the court floor, Danolan rolls his eyes. His eyes rooooollll. The Senior Apprentice gives a bit of a laugh, which is covered up with a cough and he's hunkering down into his seat with a bit of a glare the woman's way. "Yeah, okay." he mutters under his breath. But Schmendrick will hear him. And probably someone seated near him too. Hopefully, hopefully, Civur won't hear anything.
From the court floor, Schmendrick has returned to his seat and is idly sorting through the hides and to a note of Veldara, Schmendrick raises a hand idly, "I'd just like to object a little, while she can /blame/ her assistants, I think it would be better for their reputation if she didn't insult them as well."
From the court floor, "Dually noted." Civur mutters, shooting Veldara a quick look. "Master Veldara, watch your words. If you want to blame others, please make sure to back it up with -fact-." He mutters again, stopping to take a swig of his water. "If you do it again, I'll arrest you for libel." Danolan is given a passing look, and he clears his throat again. "Anyways. Continue."
T'ab coughs a little as he looks down at Veldara and the tears that are appearing, "She looks so sad, now I feel a little bad for arrestin' her even if she deserves it." The bronzerider even shifts idly in discomfort of watching the woman cry. But in reference to conversation of children he just glances over to Issri, "All boys do it, hopefully he ain't startin' trouble as bad as I was when I was that age, and from there I was just runnin' away on a sevenday basis."
Issri has no sympathy for the crying woman. She even rolls her eyes a little bit. Tears are for the weak. "She's playing the guilt card. Don't let her sway you," she mutters. "You did your duty." Then she shakes her head, smiling once more. "No, I don't see Ricci as being a troublemaker. He already wants to be a Guard just like his dad. It's /Sriella/ I'm worried about. Now /her/ I could see running away, just to explore, and giving poor Eric and I conniption fits."
Daegan snorts softly, "Reminds me of my little sister Abrigail when she's been caught doing something she shouldn't, the fake tears and a blow of her nose as she hopes no one will notice that she's not providing any concrete facts so far. All sweetner and shine and nothing to back it up." he says as he sighs a bit.
Brethion's hide is much reused, and has changed colour from the amount of ink that has been scraped off it time and time again. That's alright, though. Brethion isn't taking detailed notes, just a few impressions. He's probably not the only Harper apprentice doing so. "I dunno," he says, "Maybe she means the tears. I thought the point of these things was to judge fairly, not assume things."
From the court floor, Schmendrick catches the look of Civur to Danolan and he also turns his gaze to the apprentice, whispering quietly, "One more snicker out of you and you'll be demoted to Junior Apprentice and put on latrine duty for a Turn. You hear me?" And yes, those folks sitting right behind the pair are probably getting quite a show, "Now, give me the first evidence hide so I can prepare."
From the court floor, Veldara nods and blows her nose again, shoving the hanky into her sleeve once again. "Yes, sir." she nods. "The Crom Lord Holder must have been plotting with one of my assistants. Due to my high standards, it was not easy to please me, but my assistants..most of them, thanked me for it in the end, for setting the bar high for quality of work." A very high bar. "Lord Holder Teshel would purchase extravagant things for me for some turns. I had a friendship with the man for some turns... but after a while, I saw what how devoid of morals he was. I was /not/ the first woman he propositioned to be his mistress. Just ask Yithi, Brenana and Midi, of Crom. I did my research after his advances became aggressive and I was no longer comfortable being around him. At first, he told me he was in an open relationship with his wife, Lorelle, but that was not the case, at all. He promised me that he would be making large donations to the Harper Hall for equipment and supplies, so I accepted his gifts for a while. But he never made good on his promises." A pause, "Finally, I cut ties with him, hoping it would not impact the hall. I was wrong. It would only be too easy for him to find one of my assistants and have them forge records and take some of the hall's funds. Only too easy. You should ask Hafen how good he was at approximating my signature for things when I had to be away from the hall."
"Aye, t'was nice to actually find some action as a guard, most people just listen to us cause we got big dragons'n all." T'ab tries to stifle a chuckle, but it still comes out a little bit, "Well, you should tell Miss Sriella that if she wanders off that big dragons like Tyroth will eat her or somethin'... uh... maybe not that might scare her."
Issri laughs softly, shaking her head, "No, threats don't work on her. She's a /very/ bright girl, and if she knows you're bluffing she'll give you this /look/. I swear, it's a look my nannies would give me when I was a kid. She's /already/ got it down pat."
From the court floor, Civur is not amused. Or is he rivted by the story. His hand is balled up into a fist and propped up against his cheek, his eyes fluttering shut from time to time as he listens. When Veldara finishes, he coughs, turns to eye the Journeyman and his assistant with a grunt and turns back to Veldara. "Thank you Master Veldara. Anything else to add?" He doesn't wait for her response and instead turns to Schmendrick. "Journeyman, the defense?"
A belated response to Cothi, Alesa nods, "Well its good to take notes. I am sure you can use that in your Journeyman project, no?" She watches Veldara's testimony with one raised eyebrow. Her obvious distaste for the woman is something she cannot help but show. But she is far from alone. Good old Rubin starts to fidget and Alesa gives him the stinkeye, pointing to his half empty parchment. What has been written there is a cartoonish looking drawing of Veldara's head on a dog's body. "Those are not notes. Save it for art class." she mutters.
Vezre walks in from the Harper Great Hall.
From the court floor, "Thank you Master Harper." Schmendrick takes the first hide and waves it in the air, "Our evidence is meant to prove that Master Veldara's statement is most definitely false and that she was the one /guiding/ the actions of embezzlement and flagrant title abuse. The first piece of evidence is this, I shall hand this over to the tribunal to look over." The man steps forward, giving it to the guard to deliver to the jury and then he steps back. Then forward. Then back. Then forward again, getting the foot right, "Er, ahem, sorry. This is a letter from one of the local Traders, who shall remain anonymous unless needed to be revealed, it was found /in/ Veldara's room, which was completely itemized on this list." Another stack of hides, all in poor Danolan's handwriting, are given up to the bailiff. "The letter itself, clearly states the ongoing relationship with the trader for various extravagant materials as /well/ as insistence that the trader would /only/ be accepting /Harper/-stamped Marks. He also noted in the letter the appreciation of her large quantity of marks and as can be seen in the room inventory, the total cost of the items in her room /greatly/ exceeds the salary given to her by the Harper Hall. It not only exceeds but is orders of magnitude /greater/."
"Yes... We can use them for the project." Cothi notes softly to the Journeyman, giving her a quick smile while her hand still works on writing the notes for the trial at hand. There is no visible expression for her reaction to the whole thing.
From the court floor, Veldara stands there with her arms crossed infront of herself, unflinching and unphased.
From the court floor, Schmendrick nods his head toward Danolan, the Senior Apprentice responding by bringing up another set of hides, "In addition, we have found both in her room and hidden in the archives, a /variety/ of hides that represent torn out and misplaced financial records. I have circled in red ink all of the major discrepencies between these numbers and this..." He lifts up a marked book, "... the public record of the Harper Hall's finances, and in all cases it is quite obvious that it is Master Veldara's handwriting." His eyes glance over to Veldara with a brief smirk, "For... while Hafen /is/ quite good a forging her signature, an action he will be punished for later, I present to you a copy of Hafen-based handwriting and note the shape of the 'V', his is much more harsh and sharp while Veldara's is more fluid and portrays a bit of a ... shall I say... vain preference for the letter?" Then the Journeyman returns those items, preparing for his final statement.
From the court floor, "Hmmm," Civur mutters as he looks over the letter, fingering the hide with a bit of pull of his lips. "Interesting."
From the court floor, "And finally I present my final piece of evidence, in the form of a /witness/. I ask that /Lord Holder/ Teshel of Crom please come down to the main floor to act as both character witness and observer of Veldara's inappropriate actions." Schmendrick then turns and faces the gallery, where a man is already walking sternly down the walkway to the floor.
"I dunno Miss Issri, for how big Tyroth is he can be pretty intimidatin'... s'long as you don't know the fact that he is definitely harmless." But now T'ab goes silent again, watching the Lord Holder, "And now its gettin' interestin'... I wonder if there'll be a fight or somethin', I should'a worn my guard leathers."
From the court floor, Veldara does not move, a face muscle or otherwise. Well other than the obvious breathing. Oh. The Crom Lord Holder. Well. This is different! "Objection!" Veldara calls out, "He has been known to falsify evidence and lie under oath! He is no stranger to this courtroom!"
Issri shakes her head, smiling. "I'd rather her not be afraid of dragons - especially Tyroth - but thank you for the offer just the same." She looks down at the court, distantly aware of what's going on. "If there's a fight, I'm leaving," she mutters.
Alesa twitches as Veldara starts yelling. "I always wondered.." She pauses, "How she did not suffer a heart attack and die, given how much she would yell at everyone around the hall." Yep, this lady was not known for being nice to apprentices..or most anyone, really.
From the court floor, "I allow it." Civur snaps back, hand slapping down on the table angrily. "You can't object Veldara. YOu are -not- in charge here." He seems to be getting angry, and he waves his hand. "I allow it. Bring on the witness."
From the court floor, Schmendrick ignores the objection and calmly nods and escorts the Lord to stand before the Master Harper, "This is merely an /additional/ point to the already mounting evidence, jury." Then one of the guards walks up to the Lord Holder and says "Do you swear to your post as Lord Holder of Crom to tell the whole truth." To which Teshel nods to the affirmative and speaks clearly, "I do so swear." Then, in response, Schmendrick steps around the guard and stands before Lord Holder Teshel and gives a friendly smile, "Now, Honorable Lord Holder, you have a few things to say in relation to this case?"
"Journeywoman Alesa," Brethion says, in mock-horror, "Wishing such a thing on a master!" He fans himself with one hand, feigning faintness at the very thought. He's grinning slightly too much for genuine horror though.
Vezre sits not too far from Alesa and flinches a bit at Veldara's shout, "She just thinks she can get away with it, doesn't she?" she asks, musing over the proceedings and how things are going down there.
Alesa frowns at Brethion, "I did not /wish/ anything on her. I /wished/ she'd stop yelling at everyone and stop having people cower in terror before her. It was /unnecessary/." She snaps slightly and looks over at another one of her mentees, "I don't know, Vez. Whatever the decision, I'm sure it will be what is right. Civur is known for his virtually impeccable judgement and so are the others down there." Well, most of the others.
From the court floor, Veldara twitches. Even she cannot keep her cool in the presence of someone with whom she has had such a tumultuous relationship. She bites her lip and says nothing, hands clenching slightly in the sleeves of her robe.
From the court floor, Lord Holder Teshel clears his throat and lifts his chest as he looks straight to Civur, "Master Harper..." His smile is friendly, maybe suggesting some previous history with the Master. Then he nods to Schmendrick and begins to speak, "First I would like to counter claims of my character, for I pride myself on living an honorable life and while Master Veldara hints to a continuing romantic relationship, it, regreftully, existed but it was ended long ago when I realized I was doing wrong. I love my wife and will always continue to do so." There is even a cough from the stands, the Lady Holder smiles brightly from her seat. "Also, I present these letters..." The hides offered to Schmendrick to deliver, "... these letters are from Veldara herself, which accompanied gifts /from/ Master Veldara... and while I am ashamed to accept such gifts, my hold is struggling financially and the funds were used to benefit the Hold as a whole and not myself. I did not think of /where/ these funds were coming from. And if you look into my own funds, you will find that there is /no way possible/ that I could have provided the Master Harper the proposed gifts."
Daegan arcs an eyebrow up a bit as he listens, head tilted and he shakes his head just slightly before sighing, one hand rubbing across his neck just a little, a fait mutter in the back of his throat as he tries to straighten up to watch what's going on
Brethion rolls his eyes at Alesa's frown when she looks away, not looking at all intimidated by her displeasure. "My bad, journeywoman. My bad. Must have been thinking of what the apprentices wished on her once or twice." He makes a few notes on his hide, clearly not paying too much attention, most of his mind on the court below.
T'ab laughs toward Issri, "I think the guards have this all under control." He nods to the burly folks that act as bailiffs before looking back to the Herder, "And I haven't seen Eric in what feels like Turns, mostly my fault for not coming to 'Reaches, he's bound to be always busy."
From the court floor, "Thank you Lord Holder, you may return to your seat." Schmendrick mutters as he then bows before Civur and looks up, "That is all the evidence I wish to provide. Thank you Master Harper." The Suck Up then follows the Lord Holder to his own seat.
From the court floor, Finally, Civur clears his throat, straightening up to give both Journeyman and the Master a quick glance. His brows creasing as he fingers his chin thoughtfully. "Now, Veldara. Schmendrick." He pauses to rise to his feet and motion broadly. "You have a minute each, to give me your final statements. And then, we need to deliberate." He steeples his fingers together. "Proceed."
Issri shakes her head, "He's been busy," she says quietly, with a faint smile. "We've both been busy. We'll make a point to take an Ista trip soon, though. I'll drag him away from work." And there's a determined set to her features and her voice as she makes this vow.
From the court floor, Veldara is motionless during Teshel's testimony, although close observers would see a small twitching vein in her temple. She was never known for keeping her temper. "Someone of my position naturally will gain some enemies over the course of her life. His testimony does not surprise me. Of /course/ he wouldn't admit to any wrongdoing. That's just his /nature/." But enough about him. "I could never do such a thing to the Harper Hall. It has been my home, my heart and my one passion for /turns/. Others, like Hafen, for example, did not have such a respect. I caught him signing for a few things without my permission and absconding with little things here and there. I only kept him because I knew he needed the income to assist his family's cothold. That's just the kind of person I /am/. I am a giver, not a taker. I gave my all to Harper Hall, and this is how I'm repaid. This is a sad day for our Craft."
Alesa snorts, "You wouldn't be the first who thought that about her. You should have seen the graffiti I had apprentices clean out of the /latrines/." Words and pictures, what a lovely image. "Like this?" Rubin grins rakishly over at Alesa with a new doodle of Veldara. This time, a pig is doing something naughty to her face. Alesa can't help but start to snicker a tiny bit before shaking her head. "You....." she has no words.
From the court floor, "This is most /certainly/ a sad day for our Craft." Schmendrick follows after Veldara, doing the lawyer pace thing that frustrates everyone sitting down to no end, "It is /sad/ that a respected /Master/ would stoop so low as to /steal/ from her beloved Craft to supply such an extravagant lifestyle. To note, Master Veldara does not dispute a /single shred of evidence/ that has been provided to you, instead she tries to distract and lie." The Journeyman pauses, clearing his throat and looking each of the jury members straight into the eye with his kind blues, "Hefen /has/ confessed to this forgery and is willing to submit to the punishment of the Hall itself, the Lord has admitted his wrongdoings as well, the only person /not/ admitting to guilt is Veldara. The evidence should speak for itself and I request only the harshest of punishments you can provide to let all of Pern know that the Harper Craft does /not/ condone such horrific behavior."
"Ah busy." T'ab murmurs to himself, although he remains silent for the entire final statements, only after does he speak up, "I... dunno, she is so sad, I'm /sure/ she is sorry fo doing things." Yeah, T'ab has a soft heart.
Matilda walks in from the Harper Great Hall.
Issri shakes her head. "I'm sure she deserves whatever the court decides to give her." She leans over to look at T'ab. "Are you taking notes?"
Mordecai settles quietly next to Daegan, brushing his shoulder with gentle fingers in greeting before peering down at the court.
Matilda is late for a very important date it seems. Entering from the Main Hall, the teenage Harper is busily staring at anything that /isn't/ the court room drama that is happening before her. The tapestries appear especially of interest, as the redhead with mismatched eyes moves to lean against an available wall to stare at them for a long moment. It's only when she notices her fellow Istan Harpers that she offers them a dreamy smile of greeting and moves to take a seat.
From the court floor, "We need to discuss." Civur mutters, turning to his fellow Harper Masters at the table with a nod. They rise and leave the room, gone a good half-candle mark before returning. There's a palpable silence as they reenter the room, and Civur doesn't sit as he lets the rest of the jurymen sit. "We have come to a decision." He says this with a frown, brows furrowed.
From the court floor, Veldara fetches her hood and returns to her position infront of the judge. The two burly guardsmen start to twitch, as if they believe she might make a run for it. But no, she stands with a stony faced countenance, and arms folded infront of her as she waits for the determination of her fate.
From the court floor, Schmendrick prods an elbow into Danolan's side to get the man's attention to the arrival of Civur and the rest of the jury, then he whispers to the Senior Apprentice, "Stand." Then the Journeyman follows his own orders by standing confidently and looking directly at Civur. The man's face is blank but there is a momentary twitch on his face of nerves.
From the court floor, "We, the Harper Hall, find you Veldara, guilty." Civur says this loud and in a monotone, sweeping his hand to the audience with a flourish. "Clearly Veldara, the evidence is stacked against you; you bring nothing more than hearsay and accusations without any evidence, and it seems, people can vouch for your deviousness." He pauses. "Your punishment--you shall be stripped of your rank, removed from the Harper Hall, banned from ever representing this fine hall," and he pauses, chin lowered, "And six months of manual labor." Law and Order people. Law and Order.
From the court floor, Oh snap. Schmendrick does release a little smirk as he glances to Danolan and then returns to solemn as he just proceeds to stand and watch Veldara and await her reaction, or overreaction.
Alesa waves and smiles at Matilda and then her attentions are riveted to the courtroom floor. She bites her lip, she is on pins and needles about the verdict. As Veldara is found guilty, a look of utter joy, elation and relief takes over and she starts to clap. But thinks better of it. But still, she looks so happy.
Daegan smiles a bit as he leans over enough to rest against Mordecai's shoulder for a moment before he straightens back up, listening quietly as he shakes his head a bit. He leans over to murmur softly to Mordecai, too quiet for anyone to hear but him as he speaks to the man sitting beside him.
T'ab glances to Issri as the pronouncement of the verdict, "Err... I forgot. The Master was found guilty, not a Master anymore, I doubt D'baji cares much."
From the court floor, Danolan doesn't show much reaction really. He's smiling, but covers it up with his hand as he leans back in his chair to glance up at his mentor. If he could high five, he would, but he knows better. "This better get me walkin' the tables." He mutters, loud enough for Schmendrick to hear.
Issri shrugs, looking curiously down for the woman's reaction, even as she stands and stretches. "Want to go get that drink?" she invites.
From the court floor, Now, Veldara is normally a rather pale, pasty looking woman. That's why she always used so much makeup. Either that or she was just a floosy. Anyway. Her face turns ghost white and she drops her hood. The guards rush up and restrain her before she can start drama again. But all she says is a snarl/mutter. "Fools. All of you. I've been framed. You haven't heard the last of me." She does not struggle rather than spit as she talks. It is a quiet rage that she'll probably take out on cellmates later. Fun times.
Mordecai pats the other man's hand gently, giving him a little grin as hereplies softly. Veldara's commentary earns a little frown of bemused interest. "Oh, my." He muses, rasping at chin with thin fingers.
"That wasn't ominous at all," Brethion says, as he peers down and hears Veldara's parting words. "And very dramatic. So appropriate for a Harper, don't you think?" He makes a final note on his hide before rolling it up and stuffing it back into his bag. "Maybe we should have had some sort of dramatic musical sting for added effect?"
From the court floor, Schmendrick gives Danolan a firm pat on the shoulder, although from the amount of force it is much nearer to a slap on the back, "We'll see Danolan... we'll see." He even offers the Senior Apprentice a smirk before glancing to Veldara and then starting to gather his things, "Let us get out of here, maybe I'll let you have a glass of wine." And then they get everything and head toward the exit.
From the court floor, Dun-Dun. The End.
"I would love a drink, but I really should be gettin' back to the Weyr. I owe you a drink, and a visit, and a hug. But I'll give you the last one." T'ab offers Issri a hug before standing and heading to the exit.
Alesa nods over to Matilda, and stands. "All harpers come with me to the Dancing Dragon tavern! Drinks on me! This is a special occasion!" And she gathers her things and gets the heck out of there. Celebrate...holiday...partayy!
Issri looks disappointed, but she smiles a moment after and returns T'ab's hug. "I'll hold you to that," she promises, smiling as she follows the stream of people heading out.