==== December 27, 2013
==== Cha'el and Mayte
==== Winemaker and Weyrsecond meet in the Archives.

Who Cha'el and Mayte
What Winemaker and Weyrsecond meet in the Archives.
When Four months and 12 days until the 12th Pass
Where Archives

Mayte6.jpg Chael2.png


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.

The sandstorms have not returned this bright sunny morning at Igen Weyr, and it's a day that many are choosing to celebrate by going outsde to enjoy the sun. This leaves the Archives relatively empty, as people who aren't celebrating are finally able to do some tasks outside, no longer filling up the hallways and other notable indoor locations with their duties. One apprentice, her usually Rukbat-kissed caramel skin looking a shade less outdoorsy, is still haunting the Archives, though; flitting from shelf to shelf, keeping an eye on the doorway, should obnoxious brownriders come through the door to scold her. Well, until that happens, Mayte continues to pull books from shelves, depositing them on an increasingly weighed-down old table. Mayte may also be grumbling to herself.

And who should come through the door? But a brownrider. Whether or not he's to be viewed as obnoxious probably depends on whether or not one is on the receiving end of a dressing down. It's exactly the peace and quiet of the Archives that has drawn Igen's Weyrsecond to its somnolent embrace. Perched upon a broad shoulder is a rather rotund bronze firelizard and tucked under the opposite arm, several blank sheets of paper, a stylus tucked behind his ear, and a pot of ink in his hand. Office on the move!

While Mayte is making another run through the shelves (to the consternation of the Archive drudges who just know they'll be putting those books back later), the young apprentice runs across a familiar knot on an unfamiliar face. She stops, books in arms and stares at Cha'el for a moment, lips tightening for a moment before she turns abruptly to dash off, returning without the books. Somewhere, a table groans. Mayte makes her way back to Cha'el and announces herself: "Hi. You're the new Weyrsecond." Well, at least makes her presence known.

Since W'rin handed him the knot, Cha'el has run the gamut of reactions ranging from downright fawning to looks that clearly read 'piss off and die!' Such fun to be the new guy! And apparently it doesn't bother the brownrider much either for Mayte's announcement of her presence is met with a polite smile and dip of head as papers and inkpot are deposited on a table separate from where she appears to be building a Hold with books. "Cha'el, brown Sikorth's," the Weyrsecond acknowledges, "And you would be…?"

Mayte is definitely not fawning, but she doesn't sniff haughtily and walk away, either. She eyes the knot again, just in case it morphed into something else while she wasn't looking, and mphs: "K'vvan said you were a good'un." Mayte doesn't look entirely convinced, though she does give Cha'el a tentatively conspiratory grin, followed by, "We'll see." She watches him set up his table, hands clasped behind her back loosely, "Mayte. Vintner Senior Apprentice." A knot that holds little compared to the Weyrsecond's, but the dark-haired girl shrugs: "Whatcha doing here?"

The greenrider's name isn't one Cha'el had expected to hear coming from the vintner's lips and so he does a bit of a double-take, neatly groomed stubbled features then fitting about a guarded line. Yeah, recent events are still playing through someone's mind. "You a friend of his?" The brownrider goes on to ask, meandering over to the stacks of books Mayte's gathered together mouth turning about a crooked smile when she introduces herself. "Nice name." A book is picked up, the spine read and put down again. "Research," he replies on his presence in the musty Archives. "You?"

Mayte smirks a little at the reaction she receives, but she shrugs one shoulder, "Yeah, I'm a…" Wait, does K'vvan actually admit to having friends? Well too bad, buster, "friend of his." The controlled expression on Cha'el gets a curious look from her: "He's not in trouble again, is he?" That's our K'vvan, alright. Anyways, she grumps slightly, but her nod is polite enough, "Research for me too. Trying to figure out if older generations," eye flicks to the Weyrsecond so briefly, "ever had to try protecting crops in the sandstorms."

Is K'vvan in trouble? Cha'el has no idea for he's stepped a wary circle around the greenrider since his Nadeeth went up. However, given the state the younger man had been in when he'd stalked from the baths and left him on his own, concern makes a short showing before being shoved firmly aside. Yeah, he catches that flick of eyes his way when 'older generations' are mentioned, controlled expression allowing a dry line of amusement to show. "Likewise. Hoping to find something written by the Starcrafters that might have been overlooked." Sandstorms, Thread, both a threat to alcoholic beverages Pernwide.

Well, the Weyrsecond would know better than Mayte: "I haven't seen him in a while," she confesses, "He's been doing that weird thing again, where Nadeeth was really friendly." That one-shoulder shrug again - Mayte's gonna have to learn a new move soon - as she turns to much more important topics: "Yes. Thread, too." The horror of memories from Keroon have faded somewhat so Mayte can still smile a little, "I mean, as far as I can find, they didn't just stop making wine and kill the crops for 50 Turns just because of a Pass, so I'm pretty sure we can make it through a few sandstorms." Ever the optimist. A chin-jut at Cha'el's own desk: "Do they think we'll be getting more Thread now? Is the Pass starting early?" It's lucky there are few other people in the Archives - though Mayte tries to keep her voice low, it can carry, and Faranth knows how books have ears.

"Weird thing again?" Cha'el questions of K'vvan unsure of quite what the young woman might be referring to. But then she's moving onto topics of a more business like nature. "Perhaps the vintners paid the 'riders in booze to ensure the safety of the crops during a Fall." Cue the roguish grin that appears for that one. "Now a sandstorm - There's just no bargaining with that." Several more books are picked up and discarded as being irrelevant to his purposes. "Nothing has been confirmed yet," he gives, smoothly avoiding delivering a verdict either one way or the other. "Its why I'm here. To see if there are any accountings of rogue Falls occurring before the official start of a Pass."

Mayte just gives the older man a sardonic look, worthy of the teenagerest of teens - when isn't K'vvan being weird? But she's not-said too much already, turning that look into a broad, nearly-innocent smile, "I'd think the riders would do that out of self-interest anyways - importing wine from Benden is always so much more time and effort," which means marks, "than having the house selection on hand." Cha'el's smooth evasion of making a formal declaration is noted, and Mayte nods a little, "We haven't heard of any since though?" That's definitely a plus in Mayte's books, as she fingers something called the Igen Weyr Almanack, circa a long time ago.

Not having gotten a more thorough explanation from Mayte, the brownrider frowns. Mental note made to look in on K'vvan. Awkward or not as that might turn out to be. Topic of prickly greenriders set aside, he affords the vinter apprentice a low chuckle. "And what of the 'cane from which your clever lot are able to ferment rum? Does not that get look-in for protection to?" Eyeing the book her fingers are now trickling over, Cha'el leans forward and will attempt to slip it out from under her nose if she doesn't react quickly enough. Sneaky Weyrsecond!

Mayte snorts quietly, "Oh, I'm pretty sure those will get saved too. And
if not, there's always fruit rums, like that Smith down at Southern makes." That's an offhand comment, that Mayte's ready to move on from, finishing with, "My specialization is viticulture - you know, growing grapes, how to blend grapes, when not to blend grapes, how to make sure they don't die in sandstorms…" She stops there before sh… "Hey!" In her revelling in the many ways she can viticulture, Mayte has let Cha'el steal the almanack from under her own hand: "I need that!" She's not so young as to jump after it (given that Cha'el towers over her by seven inches), but she crosses her arms and starts tapping one foot.

HA!! Success! The almanac is his! At least Cha'el doesn't stoop to the level of holding it up over his head. Instead he starts to flick through its pages, scanning the contents of each before moving onto the next one the topics of conversation picked up with a snort for the mango mash, erm, moonshine K'vvan had tricked him into drinking. "That gutrot damn near killed me!" Not quite. But still. Interest peaks when Mayte goes on to explain her specialty within her craft and he pauses mid turn of page. "Which are proving to be the hardiest down here?" Cha'el asks, "Red or white?" The tapping of foot, conveniently ignored.

The foot is tapping impatiently; see if Mayte is so kind with her review of the new Weyrsecond! Still, she snickers back at Cha'el. "Don't drink a lot then, do ya?" she replies sassily, conveniently forgetting, but for a quick flash of memory over her face, the first time she tried it. Still, Mayte watches the tall man turn each page, while she answers, "The red does better in the heat - white is more sensitive to temperature change and," a grousing noise, "sand." Stupid sand. Maybe a bit of urgecy will help: Mayte puts out her hand, "May I please have that book back?"

That snicker coming from the vintner apprentice engenders a smirking curl of lips. "Former seacrafter," Cha'el reveals of himself, flips a page and then narrows a closer look at something written there, "practically grew up on rum." Much to the horror of his mother's Harper sensibilities no doubt. At the request made by Mayte, the Weyrsecond closes the book but doesn't yet hand it over. "Then why not just concentrate on growing red and leave the white to another area?" He asks, it making sense enough to him not to waste time on something that refuses to play along.

Mayte is disbelieving as she looks over Cha'el, "And Aaron's brew nearly did you in?" Slow, sad shake of head, "Does the SeaCraft know about this?" Anyways, Mayte's starting to look excited at the possibility of getting that damn book back, so she replies distractedly, "Because there are enough white-drinkers to make it feasible right now. Seems like a lot of the refugees are fonder of sweet whites than big reds." Still, this vintner's obviously a red drinker as she confesses, "We've considered it though." She's not ashamed! She's still got her hand stretched out for receiving the book, but she's curious enough now: "What about you? Red or white?"

Ocean-blue eyes narrow at Mayte for that remark. See if she gets her book back now! Widening his stance and folding his arms across the breadth of his chest, the book trapped against it, the Weyrsecond's expression tightens a fraction at mention of the refugees and their particular tastes in alcohol. "And they have the means to pay for the vintners going to the trouble of figuring out how to keep a stock of white on hand?" Iiiinteresting! "Rum," Cha'el replies quirking a grin down to Mayte for her query. Then and only then, do his arms unfold and he holds the book out to her. "White if wining and dining. And red if…" Ahem. Nevermind!

When it comes to alcohol, where there's a will, there's a way: "They usually buy the cheaper stuff," Mayte informs, "Though there are other ways." Whether this is getting into Bazaar secrets or not, the vintner doesn't expand further on that, glowering up into said pretty-boy blues. She still doesn't her book back, ahem. Eyes narrow into smirking, "Red if you really like her, huh?" Mayte is no innocent, unpicked flower: "You come by sometime, I'll let you sample some reds for those *cough* special evenings." The book is being handed back and Mayte takes it with a modicum of grace: "Thanks." A modicum.

A glowering teenager, how novel - says that probably annoying amusement that continues to linger on Mayte. Bazaar secrets, new but increasingly less unfamiliar territory for the Weyrsecond, and so his attention focuses keenly. "Other ways," he echoes, making it clear he means to not let it rest there and is instead filing the information away. The vintner apprentice's observation on what occasion red wine might be savored finds Cha'el chuckling. "I'll be sure to drop by but can assure you I'll not be having any need for any reds." It's this new thing he's trying called celibacy. So far so good. Kissing doesn't count! With the book handed over he makes a sweeping gesture with his hand. "Now, can you tell me where in this mess I might find the Starcrafts offerings?"

A blank look is all Mayte's response to Cha'el's unvocal enquiry; she's already said too much, per her learnings and hugs the book to her chest. So Cha'el isn't a man after her own wine-heart? Mayte shrugs: "You can come test the whites, too. I'll make sure you get a better selection than…" so close to spilling again, "Some." As for where the Starcraft books sit, Mayte looks over her shoulder and snickers quietly, "I haven't seen many, but I've been back and forth." One hand waves over to an appropriately dark corner of the salle, where books and dust commune and conspire, "I saw a few over that way. Might wanna take a glow basket with you though - when you get higher up," one look up and down Cha'el earns him a smirk, "The glows aren't as bright." No double entendre.

A better selection than? Dark brows hike upward in silent prompt but when none is forthcoming, Cha'el merely dips his head and offers a smile. "Thank you, I'll look forward to doing that." Testing wines. Tracking the direction in which she gestures, the Weyrsecond gives a nod and rakes a hand through hair in need of a cutting, the ends of which are now taking to a blend of waved curls. "Ha ha," he gives to Mayte's comment about heights and brightness. "Smart-arse," the brownrider chides, amused rather than peeved. Leaving his papers and inkpot where they are, a glowbasket is snagged and he heads off toward the dark and pokey corner. Never to be seen again. Nah. Not really.

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