The Lighthouse itself remain open for anyone that wished to climb the tower for the fantastic view from the upper railed platform. The cottage was locked, with Eric lounging in the window where the wintry sun cast its light. Warming through the pane while still very cold outside. Davin was down the rocky crag with the gunny sack over a shoulder. It had recently snowed as he was very careful with his footing, going slow. He had a short whisk broom with him as he made his way to one of the outcroppings and back in behind it. He started brushing away the light covering of snow to continue his scavenging of the spot he discovered late the previous evening. It was a precarious angle that he squeezed in between rugged rocks, minding his step so he didn't slide into the pool of sea water captured down below. Thin layer of ice for it wouldn't have time to completely freeze before the sea claimed it again. The gunny sack was left at the mouth of the entry. There were a few things collected inside already. Fur lined cloak kept him warm as well the knitted cap, scarf and gloves. Gloves were taken off if needed but not for long for the bite of cold air and he didn't want to lose his fingers by having them exposed too long.

Though it was cold, the sea was calm, allowing for some sailing. Just beyond the rocks, a skiff with a sail made its way, expertly guided by one at the rudder. A tug and the small boat turned toward an open area where it was beached. Seemingly unfazed by the cold, its lone occupant tugged it further onto the frozen sand. Not looking for treasure, but a net that had broken free from a fishing boat that had been further out earlier. Once it was found, it was examined carefully for tears. It was fairly new so could be repaired. The sailor guiding the small boat was dressed in heavy clothing, ones that were shapeless.

His foot slid as he tried to reach what gleamed a reddish hue caught in the rocks behind the crag. Rocks tumbled down to the pool below breaking through the ice easily. He had to grab on as the whisk went tumbling down as well and he to hold onto the rough edged rocks as a few curses flew from his lips. At least he didn't fall and found it had gotten him closer to the object he was trying to reach. Carefully stretching once again as gloved fingers now curved around part of the object. It was stuck however and another curse that would make a sailor proud was out as he tried wiggling it free. He was determined to make claim of it.

Pausing in collecting the net, Niamh looked toward the rocks. She finished rolling it, and tossed it into the skiff then made her way in that direction, nimble as a mountain goat. She took note of the gunny sack, then climbed to where the rocks left a small gap. Wiggling through, she watched as the man tried to pull something free. A rock slipped from where she stepped, tumbling free with a soft clatter.

Wiggling with one hand as he heard noise behind him and a jerk of his head to the side as he looked over a shoulder. Keeping in mind to keep his hold. Wondering as well who else, or what else was about this afternoon. This time of year there was nary a soul to be seen other than on ships that sailed close enough that one could see the men aboard them. Sometimes women. Brows went up nearly under the edge of the pulled down cap. "Who are you?" Unsure what to say to the one. Uncertain as well if it was a lad with fine features or a pretty girl. A quick dip to see if the one had any weapon on a second thought and possibly to discern the gender. No luck there. Least the one wasn't wielding a sword or dagger for certainly he would be caught in a bad circumstance.

The question brought a chuckle. She didn't wiggle closer though eyes that were more blue than gray regarded him a moment. "Niamh Lysaght. Who are you? And do you need a hand? You look like you're in a bit of a bind?" She didn't have a weapon that could be seen. Then again, she wasn't sure if he had one.

Her last comment had him glancing down, where his feet were positioned, the pool below and the reach of his arm as he still held on tight to the object. He was in a bit of a bind, falling would be fair easy. At that moment the object came free, presently covered in grime and barnacles, crusted looking except for a few parts that shone a rich bronze. On a glance to the novice eye, it would be passed over as part of rock than anything else. With the release his arm swung back with the object, "Grab this. Quickly." Or he was going to fall if he didn't have his other hand to grab onto the rocks, his feet already shifting precariously.

She didn't argue since she didn't want to see him fall. Didn't look like a pirate or desperate man. She grabbed the object quickly and made ready to grab him too if necessary. She might not look it but she was strong from the work she did. "Got it." Meaning he could let go and catch himself.

Barely out of his hand and it was around to grasp a hold on the rock he was against, his one foot slipping free and certainly he would have fallen otherwise. Not that he'd really get too hurt but he would get wet. Soaked in the cold. He sucked in a breath as he pressed his forehead to frozen rock a moment. Getting his bearings before easing back away from the rocky outcropping. Hopefully he didn't step on her nor bump into her, hoping she had the sense to move back as well. "I think I'm done for the night in treasure hunting." He was curious to what he had found as it would take a lot of careful cleaning to find out later. Being she was before him, he let her ease out between the rocks than try to maneuver around her. Which had him recalling she gave her name during that intense time. "I'm Davin Byrne, the new Keeper of the Lighthouse. Niamh, nice to meet you and thanks for the help. Unusual name, does it mean something special?" Usually such names did.

She watched to make sure he wasn't going to fall before she was moving out of the way.  Though half her face was hidden by the scarf  she wore, her eyes lit up with her smile. "A good idea.  She eased backward briefly then jumped down lightly, his treasure held tightly so it wasn't dropped.  Turning, she pulled down the scarf to reveal her face, wrinkling her nose as the ice on the material crackled.  "It means radiance or brightness.  And it's a pleasure to meet you, Davin Byrne, keeper of the Lighthouse."

"Much like your smile would be?" Not that she had smiled yet that he could see only the way her eyes lit up. "Are you from these lands?" Trying to think of something to say conversation wise. Easing out as he grabbed up the gunny sack. He would need get a new whisk broom if he went exploring with a snow covering again. Moving closer as he opened up the sack that she might put it within.

"Aye." Her laughter came easy as she answered. "My mum named me that because she said I lit up the room when I was born though I think she exaggerates that a bit.  I'm from the village of  Ruiaidin, down the coast a ways."  She made a motion toward the skiff.  "I was looking to see if I could spot the net that came loose from the fishing boat earlier today.  Are you from the lands also?" She knew there were a lot of newcomers to the realm lately so if one didn't recognize the name, it paid to ask.

"Were you able to find it?" Otherwise he would help before it got too dark. He shook his head with the question. "My mother's family was a long time ago. She came back last summer. I came to visit and stay the winter." Lips pressed together as he closed up the gunny sack after the object was placed within then slung it over his shoulder. A glance given down along the rocky shoreline to note the skiff. "Laird Maurice offered a place of my own to stay while here and doing the lands a service as well. I took him up on the offer. Comes with a cat." The last somewhat humorously.

Rather than being seen on Luna's back, Nora walked along at her side, her gloved hands holding onto the reins.  There was no reason, other than she suddenly felt like walking rather than riding.  Perhaps, again, she'd been on the mare for too long.  It wasn't often to see her in anything but dresses, though tonight she wore fitted trousers of heather grey, matched up with a ruffled blouse worn over another shirt to keep her warm.  Her cloak was fur lined and she kept it pulled about her to block the wind.  Her hair was left loose, long and curly.  She took her time, though when she came closer to the lighthouse, her eyes raked over it thoughtfully.  Luna snorted through her nose and pawed at the ground at Nora's side.

"I've met Laird Maurice when he's come to the village. He knows my da." Of course, he didn't really come to talk to her but still she knew him.  "He's a good man.  And thank you for your offer but I found it on those rocks over there. It's in the skiff now."  She tipped her head to look up at the lighthouse. "And does the cat like your company?"  Smiling again at the thought of the cat owning the lighthouse and its keeper.

The wind picked up, whisking moisture filled air in a sharp bite over the rocky shoreline. Snow was starting as he glanced up then back. "You're welcome to come up to the Lighthouse for something warm to drink." Eyeing the waters that were also starting to churn up with the gusts. "You might not want to go back out in this. We can secure it so it doesn't get washed out to sea." He'd help her with that as he started in that direction. It was time to get off the shore and back up where  it was safer. "Aye, cat likes me but I think it is mostly because I feed him." Pausing a heartbeat, "least six meals a day."

"I'm going to travel to the banks of the sea, to see the waters gliding, hear the nightingales sing."  She piped up the song out of nowhere, and her voice managed to lift enough to be carried by the wind; haunting and yet, soft.  She trailed off with a bird-chirp of a laugh and gave Luna a light scritch along her sloping neck.  They walked a little further, Luna's head lightly bobbing up and down with each step the mare took.  Nora's step was more of a lazy dance, long legged with a playful sway of hips.

She adjusted her scarf, narrowing her eyes slightly as she looked up at the sky.  "I told them I might not make it back before the snow started again, but we've a method for that."  When they reached the skiff, she removed a heavy wool blanket from a wooden box with holes drilled in it.   From inside, she first retrieved a paper with a piece of charcoal. A quick note, and the paper was put in a oiled cloth tube on the leg of the homing pigeon inside.  "Go inland first, Tutie." She glanced at Davin, an impish look in her eyes before she released the bird.  "He'll reach the village in no time and let them know I'm safe."  Now the skiff could be seen to.

He was real curious as to her safe measures under such circumstances. At first he thought she would heave out a heavy anchor and toss it between the rocks so the skiff could not be washed away. Brows lifted at it turned out to be a homing pigeon instead. "Oh, that works well." Provided a good gust didn't slam the bird into a building, rocks or tree. He indicated where steps hewed out from the rock led a spiraling path up to the top of the cliffs where the lighthouse was. The light already reflecting off the snowflakes as night descended. "Watch your step on them." They were not too bad but anything out in this weather was slippery in parts if one wasn't careful. The trick was to sort of walk flat footed than a slanted - sliding step. He headed that way and started up, letting her know where to mind her footing along the way. Had he heard singing upon the wind? Maybe there were mermaids like tales of old. In these lands, with all he was finding out, he would not be shocked to witness the impossible in that area.

There had been singing, but now it was more of a delicate hum. She had her face tilted to the sky, her eyes closed. Snowflakes touched her cheeks, melted, and a few more fluttered against her lashes. She might have forgotten her destination, became distracted by a few thoughts. She drew in a breath and opened her eyes to watch her exhale mist upon the air. Then her gaze lowered, her chin tipping down near her collarbones. She grew quiet. She thought,  thought she'd heard people. She gave a tug to the reins and she started forward, Luna in tow. She crept towards the sounds.

Oh, the skiff wasn't going anywhere. She not only had an anchor that she used but a rope that was looped around one of the rocks and tied off good. An oilcloth cover was pulled over it. There was a hole for the mast and a slit with large eyelets that a rope was quickly threaded through, securing the top. All this was done in a matter of minutes. She followed him up carefully but just as lightly as she had tread among the rocks earlier. As far as Tutie, he was a survivor of many a trip in stormy weather. He'd shelter if it became too windy then continue on when it was safe or morning.


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