====September 9, 2013
====Teya, Zeyta
====Teya continues to be wary of Zeytas bearing gifts.

Who Teyaschianniarina, Zeyta
What Zeyta brings consolation gifts … and requests a favor. Teya remains unimpressed.
When There is 1 turn 3 months and 9 days until the 12th pass.
Where Archives, Igen Weyr



A grand room, lost to more pressing concerns, the Archives hold many treasures well past their prime, from instruments to examples of older flying gear and agenothree tanks. Faded and disused Records lean tiredly against their shelves, their bindings peeling and creating layers of dust on surfaces long left without maintenance. The floors are dirty, various footprints creating crisscrossing paths between rickety wooden chairs and drunkenly off-kilter tables. Columns rise upward to the ceiling, hung with glow-baskets scarcely tended and fast losing their strength. The hum of activity is duller, here in this forgotten space — few visit in search of historical facts.
Zeyta is here.
Obvious exits:

Is it no wonder that evening finds Teya in the archives even now, though the proud tangle of cording on her shoulder translates to wingsecond, rather than weyr-. At the moment she is not perusing the archives themselves, but working on something of her own: several pages surround her, all bearing her tell-tale neat notations. Though some are painstakingly copied representations of wing formation diagrams from the archives, others are more hastily scribbled doodles of … more of the same. There is a half-mug of klah beside her, but judging from the lack of steam (or attention paid to it) it has long since gone cold. The archives are quiet, save the scritch of the quill and the occasional rustle of turned pages.

Less surprising: the sleuth of a sneaking social carrion-eater Zeyta has become as of late, more scavenging for the weak and wounded than outright predator. She interrupts the archives with the conundrum of feet, ever the prelude to the march of small and slight woman through the threshold. Displayed along her forearm so the tipped of its corked neck rests in the crook of her elbow, she enters with a bottle of spirits housed in a vessel of blue glass and tied with a frilly and spiraled proliferation of glossy black ribbons at the top. This, she sets with a quiet thud amid the sea of documents spread across Teya's desk after a purposeful stride brings her looming near. The smile on her face is— benign, like a tumor, and yet, still concealing. Her motive? Unclear, but few actions by Zeyta are without intent.

Teyaschianniarina is warned by the approach of feet, so that she doesn't start when the bottle's thud interrupts her work. She punctuates pointedly, then looks up to meet the unsettling presence of Zeyta's smile, benign or not: her own answers, but it is a reflexive thing, won from long turns of association rather than any current pleasure in her fellow brownrider's presence. Her eyes and eyebrows do the questioning, the latter raising up toward her cap of frizz-fuzzed curls as she nods toward the bottle. Ye-es?

Zeyta holds up a finger meant to conjure attention and buy time; it floats in the air even as it shrinks with her movement away. With her free hand, she drags a chair to the front of her fellow brownrider's table, and all but collapses into it with a neat motion of crossed ankled and folded hands, not unlike a feline arranging itself to rest as her raised finger drops to her lap. In the instant rear meets the wooden panel of her seat, her smile vanishes into the smooth apathy of a neutral expression. "It's from home." The one four-hundred turns in the past (since she's banned from present day HRW). "As much as I thought of it as my knot, it also pains me to see no one I know in a position of … mmm, meritorious influence." Sorry Tuli.

"Ah," is quiet, understanding seeping into the watery-pale green-blue of Teya's eyes, and it is nearly reverence with which she traces a finger against the bottle's bold blue glass. She drops her hand, shuffles some papers out of the way: into neater piles, rather than the in-process scatter of their previous arrangements. "Wingsecond, now," Teya substitutes, with a lift of her hand to rub fingers against her knot, only sevendays old. "Not quite as much influence; fewer people's lives riding on my success or failure. I didn't really expect to keep it, if anyone but N'thu won."

"I have a small cache. This one is yours." 'Small' being relative for the colossal personality contained in so tiny a person; with Zeyta it might as well be oxymoron. She lapses into a small scan of the array of reports piled across the tabletop, glancing here and there with a greedy eye for detail. "Ah. Well it seems you still have more of a platform to stand on than I do in this damned place." Embittered sentiment leaks into her tone, transformed from droll monotone to something more weighted with inflection. "Yes, well. That's ok. W'rin is a wingleader, not a Weyrleader. You can't expect him to make smart political moves." Reaching out, suddenly, she flicks the side of Teya's mug, checking for contents. "He called me a complete waste of a fighting dragon because I choose to ride with Mirage. I think utility far exceeds the phyiscal, don't you?" Her hard, earthy stare alights on her opposite in so many ways, brimming with a curiosity and eagerness for discourse.

This detail, it seems, Teya is willing to share: she nudges a page here, a page there so that they will be easier for Zeyta to peruse if she so chooses. The mug's contents is uninspiring: it is half-full of slightly-sweetened klah, still liquid enough to be today's but cold enough to be hours old. "Thank you," is sincere in its warmth, although it does not entirely ease the strain between them. Teya pulls the bottle closer to her, examines it more carefully. "It depends on how you're being utilized within your wing. You've never flown Thread either, so your position in Mirage isn't depriving another wing of that expertise; Kczyslawborth's size can also be an asset in the queen's wing, should there be casualties during Fall. You," credit where it is due, apparently, "could be an asset to it, too, where your voice might get lost in one of the other wings. I wouldn't say it's a waste." She taps her fingers against the bottle's glass.

"Oh, I know it's not a waste. But I am sure my tactical expertise would be a doubtless advantage to some fighting wing; I have centuries of knowledge to build on. Not all of those Oldtime hides disappeared with Br'er." Zeyta proceeds with the same brutal indifference that is characteristic and polarizing to her interactions. Adept enough to read backwards, she gleans enough information to satisfy her quick survey, fingertips pinching the corner of one missive to flip it over and continue browsing. "I'm staying close to Tuli, who was so much more a prospect before that damned Telgari transplant usurped. Now I am unsure where I stand." This admission comes with a quiet, whisper of a sigh leaving her lips in a tight seal of disgruntlement. "I don't care for Thread. I don't care for Igen." In a sudden aside: "Y'an and Il'ad surfaced in Southern, dragonless. Or so I am told."

"Applied experience," Teya amends, while considering Zeyta from across the span of her desk. "I think we are all a little unsure, yet," she admits as well, tips her head slightly to one side as she continues her consideration. "Have you given thought to transferring to Southern?" The inquiry is - curious, rather than cutting, but it's a moment before the rest of Zeyta's statement sinks in and her fingers tighten against the glass. "Y'an and Il'ad," she repeats, then swallows hard before asking, so carefully neutral, "only them?"

"Your tactful ex-whatever, informed me. So of course the reporting was spotty," is the waspish retort further inquiry earns poor Teya. Zeyta bars further discussion by restricting it to their former topic, as she turns the hide back to its original side and gingerly replaces it where she found it. "Why would I move to Southern; it's savage. Besides I reside at Igen— only came to Igen because of — people." See, somewhere beyond that hardened steel exterior is a molten core, soft and malleable with emotion. Sitting back against her chair, she raised trim, manicured nails to her face, scrutinizing them. "Anyway. You are at least surer than I. And I want a favor." It's entitled, sure, but it's also defensive - because surely it breaks the back of the proud to have to kneel and ask aid. You can see the tension it causes writ in her face, the avoiding of eyes.

"Ah." It is careful, it is deliberate the way Teya loosens her grip on the bottle, straightens a ribbon as she listens to the rest of Zeyta's answer. "It has it's … charms," and oh that is wry, that is. "Igen." Some measure of tension still running its undercurrents through this meeting eases as Zeyta utters the word favor: here is the expected, rather than the unsettlingly benign unknown. "You are in little position to be asking favors from me, Yza," is measured, but it is not an outright denial: she continues with, "but name it - and be reasonable - and I'll … consider it."

Zeyta huffs, as instinctive hauteur dictates an offended affront to being put into place. Closing her eyes, her nostrils flare in an obvious intake of air - cool air - to school herself back into an upright presentation. "I realize. I have a sullied reputation and that is— personally but not professionally familiar," she says in a concrete tone of no-nonsense preamble. These are facts, not admissions. "But the crime in Igen is atrocious and the guard as appallingly corrupt." Crisp, the procession of words, but think not her jaw does not grind in breaks between, her momentum stalled so a pause ensues. "Promote M'yck. I promised a deserving man lieutenant, and while I cannot deliver, I have connections who might," here, the fixed stare is poignant, "and should, despite however much my association might… tarnish or prevent it." Is she standing? Zeyta has so rarely (and yet, so recently) been rejected that she immediately prepares for a stiff exit.

"It is not your reputation, it is the knife you so gladly twisted into my back-," is the correction as frustration turns honesty into a blunt-swung instrument, but Teya breaks off and holds up her hand to forestall a response, then says, "Sit down, for Faranth's sake. I don't oversee the guard anymore," and oh, how that admission pains her, "but I'm still working with them extensively when I have time away from wing duties, and M'yck has my recommendation for promotion. He always has, on the weight of his merits." She leaves the sentence there, but she holds Zeyta's gaze as she does; when she continues again it is with, "The ranks are due for review soon. I can make no guarantees, but what influence I still have is already being exerted in his favor. Is there anything else?"

Zeyta freezes, of course, pivoting around to face Teya, mouth opened with a prepared refutation — but that hand, and the circumstance is enough to silence her. It does not hide the turbulence that broods on the furrowed scaffolding of her brow, however. "I've always had merits," is her one, sharp assertion. "But, directly overseeing them or not, you are more likely to be given an ear than I. As of right now." Territorial as she stalks back to her chair and places herself in it, she pokes a tongue through her cheek. "No. I'll fend for myself. But if you come through, consider me indebted," is grit through her teeth, voice low.

The twist of Teya's expression is brief, but it cedes the point made; as well she says, "You were an excellent teacher," which is both honest praise and subtle dig. Once her fellow brownrider is seated Teya gives her a long look once more, then nods once. "I would rather you the one who feels indebted, not him," is more quiet, though no more gentle. After another considering pause, "You do seem to land on your feet."

Zeyta rolls her eyes. "Let that waddling wherry-hen oversaturate those weyrlings in false praises and coddle them. We'll see how many survive first Fall." Grim forecast, but Zeyta is not one to blunt the sharpness of her tongue. Or reserve her opinion. "Yes, well I'd much rather it that way too." A smirk breaks through, "A tip to landing on your feet: get your hands dirty. Or don't. Some men and women are better clean." Implicit: M'yck and Teya.

Teyaschianniarina's expression spasms over the course of Zeyta's second sentence, but she has gathered herself again by the time she answers with, "I trust in K'ane's competence; I have no experience with Sienna's." Her gaze drops briefly to her hands, to the flex and curl of fingers against palm. Her voice is wry as she answers, "I seem to have done well enough," but then she drops both hands down to wipe her palms against her thighs, the left lingering in a harder press as the right returns to above the desk. She reaches for her klah, sips - grimaces faintly but then drinks again.

Zeyta seems to catch that spontaneous tick of emotion- it evokes her sympathy, perhaps by the same twin telepathy that causes her to intercept the signal in the first place. She amends, "Oh, I'm sure your Oldtime breeding will prevail. Dragonriding runs through your veins- in a time when there was once Thread." Again: it's all matter-of-fact rather than palpable comfort, but the certitude is at least reassuring. "I'll let you return to work. Far be it from me to promote laziness."

Cold comfort, but Teya seems to take some measure of it from Zeyta's words. Not enough to make her gratitude vocal, but the dip of her head is indication enough. "I'll let you do the same," isn't quite the dismissal it could have been, before her demotion, but it is still clear. Teya relocates the bottle to the outside edge of her radius of hidework, and gathers the pages to herself again. Before Zeyta can make good on this in its entirety, she adds, "Thank you, Yza. For the piece of home," before bending her head back to her work.

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