It was a pang of familiarity, all things considered.
Six months ago, he rode out on a similar mission, yet with far less honored company. He wore the same humble and incomplete armor upon his torso, and carried the same stalwart blade upon his back, and his ears, now so used to the din of a clamorous battlefield, were washed over by the same rolling thunder of massed cavalry. He even found himself in a remarkably similar position within the formation, though now a scant bit closer to the front of the center as opposed to the rear.
His amber eyes swept the surrounding area as they galloped on, pulling in the long shadows and flamelike hues of dusk as it fell upon them. That ride was different in this respect— the raid that had brought him to this point in life, to be tasked like this with such storied fellows... it had taken place at dawn. Were he more poetically minded, Gerard believed that he may have pulled some significance out of the difference, like stanzas set to rhyme but carrying dissonant meaning. That which brought a beginning to his knighthood began the day, and now he rode out at the end of one... perhaps he would think something like that.
But he was a simple man from the country, as it were. The earth he had plowed in his youth had offered him much that served a knight— integrity, a strong back, no fear for hard work— but none such appreciation for the arts. As he was now, these things would simply be beyond him, and to read so far into it for an omen without proper understanding would only serve to disquiet a man riding out to battle. It was simple, really. People feared that what they did not know, did not understand, and did not find a clarity in. Such would not help a man with his life on the line in the slightest.
Fortunately, when the wind tossing his short charcoal locks died down and the thunder of cavalry receded, he felt no fear of that nature. A brief flash of a sort of disappointment in how mundane his task was, yes, but in that very same vein, he felt such a way thanks to countless raids like it as a mercenary. The contempt was borne of familiarity, and familiarity meant confidence.
This would be nothing he had not handled before, and that time was with worse training and more questionably equipped comrades.
Suspend with the questions of why make knights do this for now, Sir Segremors told himself, now once again looking ahead to the Captain, and count it a mercy that you aren't being thrown into unfamiliar territory.
She looked back over her shoulder. So young, that one. Scarcely if at all older than he was when he first held a blade, but to her credit, she came from a bit more preparation than "swinging an axe at a wolf in the woods a couple times as a boy" for matters of war. He understood that much. But for all his attempts at understanding...
"It won't be much longer that we will need to proceed on-foot," she said.
Her voice, high and clear, managed to carry out to the line even over the racket of transportation. Fine by him. He was a footsoldier often, before all of this. She hadn't committed any overt tactical blunders yet in his memory, and had Paladin Tyaethe and her two hundred years advising her. Captain Fanilly was new and young, that much was undeniable. It challenged many things he had learned as a sellsword, but who was he to speak upon such matters of Knights?
The Order of the Iron Rose had held its prestige through this method of selecting its new leader for far longer than any of them, save the aforementioned Paladin, had been alive. He could not ignore that, not as easily as he could ignore his misgivings. He remained quiet as others, such as Dame Forina and Artificer Elodie, mulling over their raised concerns and suggestions.
Forina's in particular seemed almost a direct rebuttal to his earlier determinations about their mission— which he did not in the slightest like. The knightess was many things, but she didn't speak without valid point. Not now. His considerations began to shift. Complacency wasn't warranted after all.
"I find it strange that he mentioned this order specifically." he mentioned, more within the undercurrent than the others.
Anyone thinking as simply as to challenge them for the sake of braggadocio wouldn't have given normal forces such trouble. They didn't think far enough ahead. This, in Gerard's mind, had to signify some perceived advantage.
Perhaps they should scou—
Ah. Lady Narcissa seemed to be of like mind. That worked.
He held his tongue, wishing to neither speak out of turn (he was new amongst them) nor flood the young Captain's ears any more than they were already.