==== December 30, 2013
==== Yules and Q'fex
==== Yules gets drafte… uh, tapped. Turnovers are not shared.

Who Yules and Q'fex
What Yules gets drafte… uh, tapped. Turnovers are not shared.
When Four months and three days until the 12th Pass
Where Leadership Courtyard

fex_smarm.jpg Yulena2.jpg


Leadership Courtyard
Nigh palatial, this gorgeous sweep of cultivated bowl: a courtyard proper, a fountain bubbles in the middle of a grove of orange-trees, next to a stone bench that has weathered many a turn. Rare metal stands out at the sweep of steps upwards to the landings of queens'-weyrs and other administrative personnel; handrails to prevent… mishaps, and sparse doors of spiraled cast-iron to lock out any vagrants.

It's always sunn… er, warm, in Phi… er, Southern. Even on a winter's evening, the sunset casting a glow of coral and crimson over the farthest reach of the western rim arcing high and sheltering over the hatching caverns, just so. Q'fex is admiring the sunset, here at the edge of the courtyard and the lower bowl, an apple in one hand and the other in his pocket. He almost looks like a man waiting for someone … or perhaps something.

It may always be warm in Southern, but Yules has acclimatized to the hot summer temperatures; ergo, she is wearing a slightly warmer sweater as she sails in to the area on Desmeth. She dismounts before approaching where Q'fex is standing, Desmeth following behind - in his casual time, the brown is wearing one of his unique hats. Yules does take a moment to straighten it in the last few steps to the Southern Weyrleader, and salutes sharply, "Good evening, Weyrleader. I was informed you wished to see me." So regimented! She takes a moment to assure herself that the ridiculously small top-hat on Desmeth's headknob, in case it's at too informal an angle.

"You have a very strange dragon, Yulena," states one Q'fex with a dubious look at the top-hat. He takes a crunching bite of his apple and assesses the rider in front of him. Doesn't say anything. Doesn't answer. Why? Because he is Q'fex. Similarly, the smirkery on his face that slowly grows, haphazard, during this episode of chewing. The smirkery is smug. RUN YULES, RUN WHILE YOU STILL CAN.

Desmeth is not strange, he's stylish! Debonair! And good with the ladies. He tosses his head and Yules affords the brown a brief sniff - maybe the Weyrleader has a point. But she won't step on Desmeth's fashionisto dreams; turning to Q'fex, Yules shrugs slightly, "He was determined to wear it, sir. Ceremonial, he called it." After that, Yules falls silent, blinking a little, her shoulders straightening at Q'fex's smirking smuggery of an assessment. Sooooo. Hands twine tightly behind her back and Yules brightens slightly as she thinks she guesses why the Weyrleader has called her to the floor: "Would you like a report on Cerise and Jiamoth, sir?"

Of course he is. Kraakenaeth is nowhere to be found — he's somewhere or another, marking which children he's going to eat next, or maybe just terrorizing baby rabbits … and Inlayraith. Same difference. Q'fex shakes his head, rolls his wrist in a way that should explain EVERYTHING about why Br'er is basically his live-in, in a universal gesture for 'keep going'. He takes another crunchy bite. He may be a little bit of an asshole, but there is a certain gleam of… vaguely paternal pride as he considers the pair of them, Yules and Desmeth.

Cuz Q'fex and Br'er are roommates, right? Best buds? Whatever they are, Yules just knows Br'er's turnover is delicious, but that's neither here nor there: "The Healers say the surgery was successful," the Weyrling reports dutifully, "Though they don't have a solid date when she'll be flying again, or ready to fly in formation." As Yules recites the unpleasant facts, her lips tighten on each bilabial consonant - these are the facts, but she doesn't have to like them. "Unfortunately, that's all the news we have so far," Yules finishes stonily, entirely missing the gist of Q'fex's expression until Desmeth snorts at her; then she scrubs the back of her head unconsciously, "Um… And T'ral's sitting with the dragonhealers seems to be productive…" she says a shade uneasily. Perhaps that's why she's here. Or maybe, "Your fruit looks very nutritious and good for you." It's better than seizing Q'fex by the lapels and begging to know why she's here, right?

… Roommates. Yeah. That. Roommates with benefits. Turnover benefits. (Br'er's turnover brings all the Q'fexes to the yard.) "So. Yules." It's like she didn't even SAY ANYTHING. (He heard it, he's just not… outwardly acknowledging that he heard it? Something like that.) "How do you feel about Lynx? Th'seus, he's a good fellow, isn't he? A strong wingleader. He'd be great to work for."

Any fidgeting that Yules was doing behind her back pauses as Q'fex speaks. It's not his tone that stops her so much as the evident lack of response to her briefing. The Weyrling watches Q'fex closely for a moment - did she miss some cue? Thankfully Desmeth is able to give the draconic version of a polite cough and bring her back to Pern: "Um. Oh, yes, Lynx. It's an interesting wing," Yules replies earnestly, "There are female brownriders," but who doesn't in this day and age? "Th'seus seems fair. Uh, I've spoken to a few of the wingriders before…" Yules trails off, the uncertainty of her tone trailing off as an inkling of an idea starts to grow in her eyes.

"T'ral was just tapped to Serval. A strong pick, I think, considering his interest with the dragonhealers." Everyone knows the bulk of the dragonhealers fly with Serval, after all. But. Back to more INTERESTING topics — though of course that should give Yules a good inkling of the progress that Q'fex's mind is going through. "Hmmm, I don't know. Maybe Lynx is a bad idea. How do you feel about Tiglon? S'dron is a young wingleader, but he's fair. You'd have opportunity for advancement, perhaps." And yet the smuggery won't leave his FACE. She better watch out — he's been eyebrowsing at her for a couple of minutes now.

Yules's eyebrows do the slight eyebrow twitch, but nods agreeably, "Yes, sir." She's no bobble-headed yes-man, "I think that will be a good fit. From Harper to Healer," Yules muses absently, but goes quiet at the mention of Tiglon. How to burst into hysterical laughter without doing so? "Ah, um…" Still, Yules knows better by now, "I'm sure working with S'dron would be…" She pauses and continues almost hoarsely, "A very good learning experience." Desmeth is lending some influence evidently. There's one possible advantage, "I know some Weyrlings who would do well there." Did Yules' eye just twitch? Perhaps it's the unconscious effect of Q'fex's smugging at her, or worse, the eyebrow effect. Just gotta stay cool, collected, act like it's NBD… … twitch…

"Oh. No Tiglon for you. Sad, S'dron could have used a capable wingsecond," Q'fex muses aloud. He rocks back on his heels and considers Yules for a long moment. "Well, I suppose you could always go back to the kitchens." There's a pragmatic element there. WOMAN GET YO' ARSE IN THE KITCHEN AND MAKE ME A SANDWI… on second thought don't, that may break the universe. "Oh! Oh! I have it." He almost CROWS it this time. "Tigris." His voice is so satisfied. "You like to party, don't you," he takes a step closer. A little too close for casual discussion, perhaps: enough to invade her space, for her to smell the apple on his breath. He pauses, lips hovering over another bite of the fruit, "…Yulena?"

Moving on from Tiglon, Yules blinks at Q'fex's next suggestion. "But I'm not pregnant!" is her first, horrified reaction, followed by, "And, and, the butter!" Some things stay with you, even after you move on to a new phase of your life. The Head Cook's butter fixation is one of them. No, there's no going back there: "Tigris!" Yules says loudly, then stops. Wait, what? "Tigris," she repeats flatly - Yules looks like a party animal? Perhaps on that would prefer to bite her fellow hardy-partiers in the ankle. Her lips curl back into a grimace as the Weyrling tries to avoid Q'fex's fruit-breath. And fails. Still, Yules doesn't move back, whether this is her sandcastle or not - she got there first.

"You're not pregnant." He crunches into his apple. Chews noisily. There's a thoughtful expression on his face — but he does have the tact, at least, to not suggest that they could FIX that problem. However, the phenomenon of Q'fex' Eyebrows may suggest that by themselves. They're kind of … semi-autonomous in nature. "No Tigris for you, Yulena?" He leans in another inch: now it's a very deliberate intrusion of her space, subtle drill sergeant-style. "Where, then, do you think I ought to put you, child?" He's a voice that can be honeyed when it wants: and honeyed it is, at this moment.

It took a moment, but Yules' ears hear that old name, partly because Desmeth is busy politely snorting each time Q'fex uses it. My dear man, did you not hear… "No, sir. Not by a long shot." Put that in your virgin appletini and sip on it! Yules gets distracted by the movement of the Eyebrows - a quick conference confirms there's no intel or message she's missing which is a relief, until Q'fex is getting all up in her face. No way to avoid Q'fex-breath now, though her face does start to look a bit canny. "I did speak with a few other wingriders," Yules starts, her voice not coy at all, "One of them did make his wing sound challenging but he says the Wingleader's fair…" And then the Firelizard of Truthfulness bites Yules, "But I can't tell if he's besotted or very loyal." Or both, let's be honest.

"You're talking about the puppy, aren't you." Crunch. "Sounds like something the puppy would say." Except he's starting to grow out of his milk-teeth, now, as cute as he remains. "Oh, no, I've had it all wrong this whole time, haven't I?" He casually leans down: "You want Serval. Good chance to stare at Br'er's ass, eh? That's something he'd say. Challenging but fair. Man nances around words like they're garlic to be minced." Still that bedamned smuggery: "Why don't you just tell me what you want…" His voice drifts a moment, "Yulena?"

Yules takes a moment to consider that, nodding slowly, "That sounds like him." Just in case they're not talking about the same person! Haha! Who's in the clever pants now? Not Yulen-Yules: "No, sir," Yules says as if by rote, "I don't want to stare at Br'er's ass. I've never really looked at it." Desmeth wants to headdesk now, pls. "And sir, it's Yules." That quiet certainty is followed with, "I've considered it, and I want to fly with Ocelot." That rings with quiet ambition sans greed and anticipation without foreboding; Yules stares up at Q'fex. And his magical eyebrows.

It's a quiet moment - not a loud one. Not an explosion, but a *snap*, as all things fall into place. Q'fex has an involuntary, quick smile - a reflexive pride at her declaration of her name - before he levels her with a look. It doesn't assess or weigh or judge: he wouldn't have called her here if he didn't know her measure. "Okay." It may be a little anticlimatic: just that little word and the final bite of skinned apple on said fruit. "Oh, here," The other hand - the one that has been in his pocket this whole time - lifts and shifts palm-up to display a pristine wingrider's knot, carefully laid over the patch of Ocelot. "Yules."

If we count back, this is the third time that Q'fex has offered Yules a knot. Yules blinks suddenly, as if she was expecting to make counter-arguments into the night, but her hands don't hesitate to reach forward for the knot and patch. Each time, Yules has accepted the knot, and each time, her life has changed for the better. There should probably be firelizards singing, but Desmeth is content to hum loudly. Still, this requires a proper response: "Thank you, sir," Yules says, her voice a little warm and breathy. Fingers slowly rub over the knot; before Yules lets go enough to leap in and HUG Q'fex, she steps back to salute, avoiding braining her new Wingleader on her first day. "Desmeth and I will serve you hard."

Third time's the charm… or that's how the stories go, at least. "You're welcome, wingrider." Q'fex probably wouldn't mind a hug. But y'know, if just his EYEBROWS… nevermind. He opens his mouth at that last comment, seems to think better of it, and his jaw snaps neatly closed. A moment's pause, he coughs, and continues. "We have drills tomorrow at sunrise." They drill the hardest, Ocelot - a well-known fact. "I also have paperwork that I could use a hand with. If you survive tomorrow morning and manage a moderate showing, we can talk afterwards. It would be… a good opportunity for a fresh dragonrider." Q'fex, your nepotism is showing, dear.

If only Q'fex had met Yules earlier in life, he would have gotten a hug. Likely. Maybe. Still, they are where they're standing at, so Yules nods dutifully, "Sunrise, sir. We'll be there." Yules looks down at the knot and commendably does not try to nibble on this one, "Yes, sir; I have a neat hand for writing and figuring," she replies, in danger of putting the runner before the cart. Does everyone go through this trial-by-inky fire? Yules doesn't ask. Instead, she looks back up, the beginnings of a large smile starting to curve at her lips: "Permission to be dismissed, sir? I should go get my things ready for tomorrow." That, and squeeing while jumping on one spot anime-style just doesn't reflect the Yules we all know and… know.

And love. Definitely love. "Sunrise." Q'fex's lips twitch upwards, a bit lazily, then: "Dismissed, wingrider." He'll continue to stand here, now with his apple core, and squint off into the sunset. Don't worry. He's not thinking about ruining Yules' honor, or the meaning of life, or anything ridiculously important. The way he's gazing off at the dying of the light… yeah, he's got to be daydreaming about staring at Br'er's ass. Or maybe his hair. Or maybe his eyes. Yeah — his eyes. He's just so dreamy.

Yules nods solemnly once, stepping back two paces. Still, she's said her thanks, but there's something needed to cap the evening… "Have a good evening, sir," the new Ocelot wingrider tells Q'fex, as if he doesn't seem to have already forgotten she's there. Desmeth is careful not to do something so ungainly as knock Q'fex over as he turns to follow his rider a bit away for the launch. In fact, he's started to whistle a little tune, pausing as he helps Yules mount. From their position a little further away, Yules waves once again in salutation before they take off - it's going to be an early morning, and even earlier if the klah's not piping hot.

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