====October 25, 2013
====E'don, Cerise
====It's not what you think! Mostly.

Who E'don, Cerise
What It's not what you think! Mostly.
When There are 0 turns, 10 months and 21 days until the 12th pass.
Where Baths, Southern Weyr

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Baths
The steamy fog of the baths could be an entirely different world, transitioning from the well-lit brilliance of the inner caverns: a different world entirely, one wrought in dreams and humid fog. Steam lifts from hot waters, obscuring those who bathe within, drenching any who dare enter. Well-maintained, well-stocked, the baths offer pre-netted portions of soapsand in various scents, fluffy towels in orderly rows, and five separate spring-fed pools, all of differing temperature: from scorching hot to soothing chill.


-- On Pern --
It is before dawn
It is 6:56 AM where you are.
There are 0 turns, 10 months and 21 days until the 12th pass.
It is Summer and 86 degrees. It is current storming day 3


You know that Hold-born modesty that Cerise had been clinging too since arriving at the Weyr? Yeah, that's been wiped out by barracks living, particularly barracks living that involves having an infant's mind attached to yours. Bathing is not to be done at leisure- it's get in, get out, before Jiamoth grows disturbed at the distance between herself and her adored chosen. Thus it is that, just before dawn, Cerise bustles into the baths and proceeds to drop trou without worrying about replacing her storm-soaked clothing with a bathing shift. Naked as the day she was born, she grabs a pre-netted bag of 'sand and proceeds directly into the second to hottest of the pools, there to begin soaping herself up with all too much gradually reddening skin on display. Doo doo doo…

Restrictions lifted, E'don, who seems to now be the earliest of risers—clearly the fault of his dragonet-isn't one to miss an opportunity to escape the barracks for a fair slice of quiet time. Unlike Cerise, E'don might have a bit more leeway in his bathing schedule; Qianvaelth isn't the neediest of dragonets and has probably insisted his rider leave the barracks for an undetermined time. And so, the gangly weyrling is far more leisure in his pace as he moves through the baths with a bleary-eyed look to the opposite side of the pool Cerise lathers next to. It's not that he doesn't see her, but rather that he doesn't register the ex-entertainer as someone he knows, only realizing once he's pulled his sleepshirt up over his head and gets an eyeful. "Cerise!"

Cerise has an arm up over her head, making it easier to scrub beneath. Check out this sexy, sexy armpit, covered in suds. Mmm, tasty. Also check out how she doesn't even bother to cover up when E'don appears and is clearly looking at her. In fact, when she does recognize the young man on the other side of the pool, up there on the edge, her soap-bearing hand moves a little more slowly over exposed flesh. "Hmm? Oh, morning, Don. Still asleep?" she inquires, adopting a casual and unconcerned mien. She's more invested in looking down at herself, in trailing drippy suds over the jut of her collarbones. They get so dirty, collarbones do.

Even in his state, hanging between sleep and wakefulness, E'don still manages to waver in his composure; he answers Cerise's query with something between a grunt and an affirmative, slipping into the pool as fast as possible. "Something like that. I'd still like to be, if I had the choice." He mutters back dolefully, turning round to palm around his dropped toiletries with a grumble. "Shit-Cerise, can I borrow your soapsand? I forgot." Gaze swings back around to the other weyrling, and E'don, even at this early hour, can't help himself-the trail of dripping suds is followed with his eye, down, down past the collarbones before he's ripping his gaze away. "I'd, uh, appreciate it."

"Was he snoring again?" That's right, Cerise has heard the snoring and suspects Qian as the source. But that serene good humor she was stricken with following Impression? It's still here! That makes the remark more good-natured joshing than anything. To the request, she quirks an eyebrow, looks between her soapy hand and E'don, and then stands in the water. Exposed! Breasts on display, though sadly they only surface after he's stopped looking. She gestures him in, however, and in case he misses that, says, "C'mon, I'll wash your back. You're gonna have to get used to it. I've been up before dawn since I was nine, it grows on you after awhile. The sunrises and soft air.""

"All the time," E'don affirms, palms dragging down his face with an exasperated sigh. "I'm getting used to it-slowly-but all that creaking and groaning really wears." All in due time, the bronze rider will probably only be able to sleep with the dolcent sounds of Qianvaelth's racket, but for now, baby steps. Cerise's suggestion is met with the most puzzled of looks, confusion and befuddlement creasing the space between brows and on his forehead. At first he freezes, and then jerks his body stiffly around, half-formed words sputtering from his lips. "Uh. I mea-oh-oka-if you-if you insist." He turns back to the greenrider, pressing himself up as close as he can go to the edge of the pool, fingers clinging to the edge for dear life.

Jiamoth senses Qianvaelth unfurls sapling branches in the misty morning splendor of the forest of his mind, the soft whispers of autumnal breeze softly knocking russet leaves together. «Jiamoth» Qianvaelth's tenor echoes within the hollow of dead tree trunks, amusement lacing with the dappling warmth of his curiousity. «Why does yours make mine so nervous?»

"Nora mentioned you were having trouble with that. You'd think you'd be tired enough to sleep through anything, aye? Maybe I've just been lucky with Jia. She's…" What? Cerise doesn't say because she's drifted off into that other-world where dragon and weyrling so happily reside. Where others have struggled to make the mindlink more comfortable, Cerise seems more at risk of losing herself there in the realm of mutual adoration- to the point of ignoring E'don as he goes ahead and positions himself for the scrubbing of the back. The netted bag hangs catatonic-style in the air as la la la, girl and green chitchat; it takes several minutes before she snaps back into the present moment as if nothing had happened. Net and 'sand are then finally applied to the young man's back. "I know, right?" she says for no reason at all. "It's one of those things."

Jiamoth thinks to you, « I bespoke Qianvaelth with: Jiamoth is, even at this hour, awash with the busy commotion of a crowd, mind full of lace whispers and silk murmuring to the tune of clicking crystal and laughter. Busy, bright and happy, she is, though ever welcoming of Qian's more primal, measured presence in the midst of the party. « I have no idea! She finds him amusing when he isn't being frustrating. //You know how he can be, mmm? Cerise says he has trouble sleeping with you? And you so soothing! » »//

Jiamoth senses Qianvaelth drifts within Jiamoth's bustling crowd with the rambling nature of a discarded leaf, the shifting whispers of his amusement tumbling its way through the bright and lively party of his clutchsister's mind. «I know» comes Qian's measured response, the warmth of his steady sureness wrapped like tree roots around the idea of his rider. «He does not know his own strength yet. He will know with time.» Jiamoth's question isn't answered, just the soft whispers of rustling leaves. «He is learning.»

"You'd think-I'm just not used to the mind link yet." E'don's voice tapers off for a moment, unsure if to continue on shakier, touchier emotional ground; alas, the poor boy has probably been the most troubled with his impression. Or at least with Qian's lack of excessive neediness with his rider, which wears on his insecurities. "I'm sure I'll get used to it." Lids slowly droop as Cerise applies the net and soap sand, E'don's shoulders drooping with a content, audible sigh, until finally his eyes are closed and his mind is wandering, so much so that he doesn't really catch Cerise's reply in full. "Hmm? What things?"

Rather than shut him down or discourage the young man, Cerise ruffles his hair with one soapy hand and makes a sound not unlike Jiamoth's whuffly laughter. "You're gonna hurt my feelings, not even paying attention while I give you a bath, boyo," she says in answer to his question. That also means she doesn't tell him what things, behaving as if she'd already said them. Instead, she moves on to using the netted bag of sand on one of his shoulders and lathering the other shoulder up with a bare hand. Try not to fall asleep, E'don. "Having trouble getting used to it, or…?" she prompts, to help him maintain consciousness.

Jiamoth thinks to you, « I bespoke Qianvaelth with: Jiamoth drifts along in the wake of his wind-borne rambling, enjoying the gamboling dance and marking that joy with giggling crafted of many voices. « With you to teach him, how could he not? Is he still nervous? She says she tries to relax him and he seems half-asleep even now. » »

Cerise's hair ruffle garners an audible whine, a high pitched 'mmmrggg' that is more like the Donner she's used to. "Oy, now you have to wash my hair too!" E'don pitches back with a shrug of his shoulders, and he leans his head into her hand a bit to acknowledge the ruffle. "If you want me to pay attention, you better work harder then," he whinges back, turning to look over his shoulder at the greenrider with a testing cock of his brow. Is he calling her bluff? Or just basking in the agitation of pre-dawn grumpiness? The feeling of her bare hand on his shoulder causes the weyrling to hum audibly, a pleased sound. There you go. Just a tiny bit of happiness out of the boy. "My dragon isn't as needy as the rest of 'em." He finally admits with a shrug of his bare shoulder, "It's weird-he's there, but sometimes he's not really there all the time. Hannah calls it a 'distant' mindlink." Ah, there it is, "So it's weird. Not having him close or reliant. I just want him to be a baby with me, you know?"

Jiamoth senses Qianvaelth is the absolute of ancient oak branches, despite his seedling stature. «He is always nervous with yours.» Suddenly the mindlink is absent, as if Qian is checking in somewhere else. And there he is, meeting Jiamoth's playful dance with a whispering tinkling of his own leafy kites. «She is not being bold enough for him to show how nervous he is.» Qian is just looking to stir the pot now.

That tipped back head is given a light push. Hey now. "Jiamoth isn't needy," Cerise insists. Theirs is a love story fit for the ages! Of mutual adoration and maybe just a hint of codependency already developed. No sooner scolded though than she sinks her fingers into his hair and proceeds with the crimpy fingers against his scalp to work up some foam. "I never figured you for the fussing over a baby sort, y'know. Maybe he's just what you really need, not just what you want, aye? Someone you can lean on, to help figure things out. You know Jia likes him? Maybe the best out of the whole clutch," she chatters, more of the green's yen for gossiping in her tone than Cerise's usual sardonic humor whenever E'don's around. "And…" But she cuts off there, briefly silent (and not realizing it) before leaning in close, front to back, hands on shoulders, to direct into his ear: "…and if she says he's just what he needs to be then you know it's right."

Jiamoth thinks to you, « I bespoke Qianvaelth with: Jiamoth hadn't really been considering it, far too busy sending flurries of glitter and confetti into those skittering leaves. Like a kitten, she romps even in thought. But now //his curiosity is catching and there's a thinness to the connection while the green reaches out through her link to Cerise to exert some control. « I would have her ask him to dance but she says water dancing is against the rules, » she admits, not truly comprehending why. »//

If anyone came into the baths at THIS MOMENT, especially a Weyrlingmaster, tongues would wag. Because the first thing E'don does the moment Cerise sinks her fingers into his hair is groan. One of those long, very audible, 'Uuuunggg,' groans ala Herbal Essences commercials. But then all barriers are down and then: TENSE. SUPER TENSE. That's the reaction E'don gives Cerise when she pulls in close and whispers in his ear. Teeth grit and reflectively his back arches just so and he's suddenly pressing himself very, very, VERY close to the edge of the pool. Flush even. Super FLUSH. "Um. Uh. You think?" E'don's tenor, usually lyrical and light, has now pitched three octives too high, a feminine squeak in Cerise's ears, and he beings to sputter in response: "Does she? I guess that bodes well for Qian and me. And Qian and Jiamoth. And Qian and Jiamoth and you and me." Whatever the fuck THAT means. E'don is now rambling, cheeks burning with embarrassment. And he's not going to move at all, because, well. NO. No no no no.

Jiamoth senses Qianvaelth is full of mirthful amusement, a dappling play of lights on the ground for Jiamoth's kitten-like playfulness; he is willing to dance the string of light across his mind's forest for her to chase, a stately presence full of amusement and curiosity, which may be pitching too far forward with the wave of his rider's emotional state. Qianvaelth's whispering wind picks up now, the cracking and creaking becoming more and more audible, the wind moving faster through the tree's boughs, alight with the fire of turning leaves. «How fun a dance! Such silly rules they have to follow.»

Normal operating procedure would be to smack him upside the head for even thinking that, much less saying it. But Cerise gives a light snort instead- all that breath against wet skin!- before withdrawing to rinse her hands off. And maybe, just maybe, to give E'don a chance to recover himself and think cold shower thoughts. Shame he'd have to get out of the pool and expose himself to make use of the cold water that's just right over there! "He'd have to catch her first and I haven't noticed he's the sort to move very quickly," she points out, more herself now. There's an odd look on her face, caught somewhere between amused satisfaction and 'uh, what was that, oops'. She promptly disguises it by ducking beneath the water's surface to wet her hair. Nothing to see here, folks.

Jiamoth thinks to you, « I bespoke Qianvaelth with: Jiamoth's amusement peaks in a flurry of silken pastels, gamboling set aside in favor of turning Qian into a ribbon-wreathed Maypole. Mimicking him, she maintains her giggling in a susurrus of sisal, cloth against cloth, and perhaps an echo of skin against skin picked up from Cerise's thoughts. « One supposes they choose rules for all by thinking of what's best for all, not just for one. Or two! I- » Oops. Someone //might be receiving a silent and gentle lecture, for the ribbons dissolve in a scintillation of light as she focuses elsewhere. »//

E'don is mortified. Absolutely, positively mortified. He turns half way, just in time to watch Cerise submerge herself into the water; by the time she reemerges, she'll probably find him glowering across the pool at her, if that's what she chooses to look at. Eyes glaze as E'don adopts a faraway look, which deepens his scowl, the space between his eyebrows creasing even deeper with agitation. "He's more suited for golds," he suddenly spits out, the wounded look on his face matched with the hint of vitriol in his voice. Now his motions quicken, hands splashing against the water to wash himself off and he's reaching with frustration towards his towel, which is toooo faaar awaaaay from his grasp while still submerged in the water.

Jiamoth senses Qianvaelth has matched the fervor of Jiamoth's swirling fabric, the creaking sounds of his branches reaching out to accommodate her festivities, the wind howling with such force that trees rend and snap. A few errant buds burst with new leaves and the hint of heady springtime-and then-ah, and then, they shrivel with sudden death, the howling wind ceasing as soon as it came. His forest is still, not even the chatter of glen fauna making due, a true hint to his own bashful scolding.

When Cerise breaches the surface again, it's with a touch of her former theatricality- complete with hair tossed back, shimmering water droplets cast through the air and hands smoothing back at the temples. What glare? She's aware of no glare, la la la. The same can't be said for E'don's retort, spat out in her direction as it is. To that, she'll simply raise thick eyebrows and tender the sweetest of smiles. "Maybe he is," she muses, "he seems the steady and dependable sort that they go for." On that note, she turns to the pool's edge and hauls herself out- still with no claim to modesty- and pads over to her towel to wrap it about her body. E'don's towel? Well, she might deign to nudge it towards his groping hand with a toe, after she's gathered her clothes in her arms. She counsels, "Best not be late for line up," before continuing on towards a convenient nook in which to dry off and dress herself.

"Maybe." E'don is quick to mimic back Cerise's way with a bit of mockery, tone flat and still full of bite as he hauls himself out of the pool and makes a grab for his towel. The fact that Cerise is now level-headed and all smiles seems to infuriate the weyrling even more, and he's turning to collect his clothes in a balled heap in the crook of his arm, feet shoved into his sandals with renewed haste. "No, otherwise Ja'kai will have our hides. I'll see you there." And then he leaves, stomping across the bath and out the door without even a backwards glance towards his clutchmate. If only she could hear his thoughts, oh Cerise. Because he's mentally chanting "Fuck you, fuck you, fuck you." Alas.

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