Who

R'zel, Talya

What

Talya runs into Ocelot's wingleader and they have a short chat about dragons and Threadfall.

When

It is afternoon of the twenty-fifth day of the eighth month of the fourteenth turn of the 12th pass.

Where

Nighthearth

OOC Date 04 Aug 2018 07:00

 

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Nighthearth

A comfortable nook, this natural extension of the living room is cozily attired with overstuffed chairs and a couple of well-worn loveseats. All have been covered in various shades of green, giving the very incongruous appeal of a miniature forest hidden away inside… a grove of man-made proportion. Fish stews and spicy white-wherry chili are often kept hot on the minor hearths east and west of the main, for those whose hours defy when meals are kept. Ornate, the largest hearth towers high, rich with carving and utilitarian in fashion: it holds court by providing the weyr with rich klah, the air thick with the scent of cinnamon wafting.


With a chilly drizzle falling outside, there's a lot to be said for staying indoors this afternoon, if one's fortunate enough to be able to do so. Lunchtime is just about over, and the living caverns are emptying out, apart from those who are lingering over a mug of klah. A few have chosen to do their lingering in the greater comfort of the nighthearth, and R'zel's among them, seated in a deep armchair and balancing his mug on the arm of the chair with a finger through the handle, while reading his way through several slips of hide which are piled on his knee.

Cold drills, cold exercising, cold baths when needing to scrub down the growing dragon… Talya is getting really sick of the cold. She's a little damp when she shuffles towards the warm embrace of the nighthearth, balancing a mug of klah and a plate of bubbly pies. She is getting those carbs and sugars in as dessert, probably having battled for those remaining after the lunch rush. There's at least time to linger by the warmth. "Mind some company, sir?" she asks of the Wingleader, giving an awkward salute with the mug of klah before settling into the empty love seat that is paired up with the chair the bronzerider is sitting in without waiting for a reply, having tried her best to be formal to the ranked rider.

"Not at all." R'zel raises his mug by way of returning the salute - it has to be admitted that Ocelot's wingleader isn't fond of saluting as a thing, especially when his hands are full. "But will you tell me who you are? I know you got one of those browns - was it the one with the really long name?" He listens to something unseen for a moment, then grins and lays down the hide that's in his hand. "Verokanth says, Tura-hai-maju-suth. Is that right? Trust him to know that."

"Turahaimajusuth is correct," Talya answers with a hint of pride, though a wince as she lets that name loose. "I know it's a long one, but at least it's easy on the tongue." At least for the lifemate. She first takes a bit of her bubbly pie, unable to resist any longer and then through a sticky mouthful she replies to the first question, "And I'm Talya." She washes that first bite down with klah, then gives the bronzerider an actual calculating look. A good old sweep up and down as she studies him. "You're R'zel, Wingleader of Ocelot. Alyna's wingleader, actually." It's almost like she was being tested, with the way she recites it. "I know I've only ever seen you from afar before I Impressed… and now during drills or helping around with the groundcrew here and there." Still from afar. "I guess I have to start actually putting names to faces, still hard to realize that now I'm a dragonrider too." And not just a face in the Weyr crowds.

R'zel smiles again. "I don't suppose he lets you forget that for long - but then, I suppose you're still kept fairly separate from the main life of the Weyr for the time being. I remember feeling it was a bit like living in a bubble at first, but then, I was completely new to the place, so I didn't have much idea what would be going on in the rest of the Weyr." He gives a nod. "And, yes, that's me. You know, Alyna, then?" He raises his mug but pauses with it half-way to his mouth. "Maybe you'll start to feel more part of things when you start helping with Fall. And flying - do you know how long until you'll be starting to fly?"

Talya frowns at the half-eaten bubbly in her hand as she listens to the bronzerider, giving a few nods of her head in agreement. "Bubble sounds about right, even for those of us that have been around the Weyr for a bit. I mean, I'm not Weyrbred so I don't know if it's still the same with them… but everything I knew before, none of that comes up anymore. It's all about Tura and me for now." She shrugs off the feelings, then chews thoughtfully for a quiet moment. "I do know Alyna, we get along really well but it goes with the whole bubble thing. Barely see her much. Is she doing better? Is she back to helping out with the Wing at least?" Time seems to be confusing for the weyrling. The idea of helping out with fall makes her shudder. "Maybe. Tura's going to be flying soon on his own, which is almost as good as flying with him. I trust him, but I don't mind sticking to the ground and watching him have his fun for a little while first."

"Alyna's not flying with the wing yet, but she's walking a lot better now, and she's been doing some jobs on the ground for us - making some equipment, and a bit of hidework." R'zel finally starts on his klah before continuing in an amused tone, "Verokanth was dead keen to get flying - he pestered me like crazy for what seemed like sevendays. Actually, it probably was sevendays. But that first flight's amazing - something you won't forget in a hurry."

Talya's face seems to relax into a rare smile, which she wipes away quickly as she dives into the rest of her pie. "Glad to hear that," she says in regards to Alyna. Setting the plate aside, she nurses the warm mug of klah in her hands she nestles back into the loveseat. Nice and comfy for a brief respite… "Tura thinks he can do everything right now. I mean, he's pretty great at everything he does." Or Talya is just blind to everything that he does wrong. "I'm the one that doesn't think I'm ready. But I'm happy to watch him get to do everything for the first time. I'm guessing flying with him mentally when he takes his first flight is not the same as flying on him that first time?"

"Not really, no." R'zel doesn't really have to think about that one. "You don't get the same sense of of doing it together, and of depending on him." A smile pulls at the corners of his mouth. "Or the feeling of being on his back, which does take some getting used to. And looking down from a height with strictly human vision, for that matter." He takes another sip, then rests the mug on one arm of the chair and balances the slips of hide in a small pile on the other.

Talya shifts on her loveseat, one hand going to her backside to give an exagerrated rub. "Yeah, being mounted up on Tura is defintiely still taking some getting used to. Hoping it's a lot smoother of a rider up in the skies, though. He's eager to show off what he can do when he can really get moving." Or maybe it has a lot to do with showing off those beautiful wing sails that he is so proud of. "I guess that all makes sense. Won't know until we get there, and it really is starting to feel like it's taking forever. And to learn to go :between: to any place on Pern." Now that seems to really be what Talya is looking forward to, looking down at her klah with a wistful expression. Her dark eyes look back up and she opens her mouth, only to close it again as she notices those hides for what seems to be the first time. Her head nods that way. "Am I keeping you from working hard here?"

"I've not got much to do, but thanks for asking." R'zel gives a sympathetic grin. "Oh, yes, the days of riding on the ground, everywhere, and bumping around like a sack of firestone that wasn't fixed right." He gives a dry chuckle. "My backside remembers them well. But it is a bit more comfortable once you're in the air, you'll be pleased to know. You get the hang of moving with them, and the motion's not so bad unless he does something sudden." He reverts to a more reflective tone, as if remembering the sense of freedom, as he goes on, "And being able to go wherever you want is wonderful. I don't think I'd really understood how much difference it could make. If you've got family somewhere else, or friends, suddenly you're not cut off from them any more." Some personal memories there.

Talya grimaces at the description R'zel puts to riding groundside. "That sounds about right." She sounds like she's really not enjoying these exercises and is ready to put that to an end. Her poor backside. "I was running away from family and the past and I only made it so far as to Southern Weyr," she admits in a lowered voice. She sighs, sinking in deeper into the cushions. "But actually being able to go to the other side of Pern, in just a few breaths and whenever I want… that's true freedom. That has got to be the thing I'm most looking forward to, besides spending the rest of my life with Tura of course. Theadfall… that is just the bad you get with the good."

"Threadfall is… a rather mixed sort of experience." R'zel's not going to make it all sound rosy, but he takes time to choose his words as he tries to explain in a balanced way. "You have to take how he feels about it into account, and it's something they just about all really want to do. Yes, it's tiring, and dangerous, and sometimes downright miserable, but it's also a challenge, and you may well find you're too busy to be scared. And the feeling of doing something you're both good at isn't to be sniffed at either. Some riders find they really enjoy it."

Talya sinks down a little more into the cushions, as if she wants to disappear in them, as R'zel tries to explain Threadfall. She looks like she wants to disappear into the mug of klah if she could, though it doesn't keep her eyes from flicking over to the bronzerider in an obvious show of listening. "He's just like other dragons, determined to burn it to ash… Maybe a little more than other dragons, it feels like. If he were given all the tools and training right now to do it, I'm sure he would try to do so. It makes me wonder if I can really match that kind of ferosity when it actually comes down to it, you know? I'm quite the opposite, used to hunkering down and hiding from it. At least I know he's got plenty for the both of us." It's a lot more honesty than she cares to admit to what is, essentially, a total stranger, but the weyrling doesn't get a lot of time to share her feelings with someone other than her lifemate these days.

R'zel nods thoughtfully, realising that he's talking to a less-than-confident weyrling. His tone is matter-of-fact without being too forceful. "Ferocity isn't always an asset, actually. As a rider, it's better that you have a clear head. It's part of your job to help him keep one, too - but they do tend to get angry with Thread, and whilst it's great motivation, too much of that isn't always a good thing." More gently, "And you'd be living in a dream world if you weren't a little scared at the thought of Fall. Have you seen Thread? Been on a groundcrew? Getting to sizzle the stuff with a flamethrower is remarkably satisfying the first time you do it!"

"I got plenty of that, clear head that wants to keep us alive. How it will work when I'm actually up in the sky during a Threadfall, not sure about that yet." Talya smirks at the thought. "What's so wrong with living in a dream?" she asks rhetorically with an exaggerated sigh this time. With her plate empty and her klah nearly finished, she sets these both now off the loveseat so that she can stretch out, trying to pretend she's living said dream life by being comfortable and warm. Her arms go around herself at the description of searing Thread groundside. "Actually, I've never been on a groundcrew. I avoided that chore at Black Rock. I much rather wanted to hide and stay, you know, alive. I know we'll be helping out during an actual Fall here pretty soon, even if groundside. If I had to choose, I don't know which I'd rather be: up in the sky searing the Thread with Tura or groundside waiting for a clump to fall through and possibly on my head… with the recent changes, that's more than likely."

"You very rarely hear of someone on groundcrew getting hit, though. I can't think of the last time…" R'zel pauses to try to recall that, then shakes his head. "I mean, groundcrew stay behind the Leading Edge, and even if we do let the occasional strand or clump through, the chances of it landing actually on top of you are pretty slim. It's really not that dangerous as long as you keep your eyes open. And in Southern, the grubs do most of the work anyway."

Talya lifts a weak hand above her head, as if she can just see said clump coming down… "With my luck back in Black Rock, it would have happened. But maybe not now, I got Tura watching my back, even on the ground." Hopefully, right? She dramatically drops the arm and closes her eyes as she lets the warmth from the hearths sweep over her. "I guess it could be worse." Like living on the continent that did not have the grubs helping out. She lets that sink in for a little bit before she moves again, this time back to a sitting position. "Tura's waking up. I'm hoping the rain's let up enough to still stay warm long enough 'til I make it back. It was good meeting one of the Wingleaders, though… I guess it's hard to really know what to expect until you do it."

"Isn't it?" R'zel reaches for his mug again, saying as he does so, "And many of us are brought up to believe that being caught out in Threadfall means instant death, which it probably would if there weren't a whole Weyr of dragons overhead burning up almost all of the Thread - it's not logical, but it takes a while to get over the gut reactions." He smiles at the weyrling. "You'd better get back to Turahaim-a-jusuth, then." He only just stumbles over the name this time. "Does have a certain ring to it, doesn't it? Good to meet you, Talya. Clear skies!"

"That has always been my thinking, no matter what anyone tells me. It is basically death raining down on you from the skies." Talya shudders at the thought. It is going to take a lot of leeching the bravery from her lifemate to be caught out in it and push her own instincts for survival aside. First she has to brave the cold! She pushes off from the loveseat, only to stand a moment longer close to the actual fire to warm herself up for the trek back to the barracks. "Thanks for the chat, R'zel. It was good meeting you too, and clear skies." It has been grilled into her quite a bit, so she's still going to salute the man one last time (and a proper one this time) before heading out.

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