Who

M'noq, Amani, Odesse

What

Amani happens across a reading M'noq and a digging Odesse. Various brands of plotting ensue.

When

It is sunset of the thirteenth day of the ninth month of the thirteenth turn of the 12th pass.

Where

Garden Terrace, Southern Weyr

OOC Date 12 Apr 2018 06:00

 

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"Don't taste the candles!"


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Garden Terrace

Tucked-away and bejeweled, here is a hidden treasure of Southern, beckoning and beguiling those who may trod the entrance of weyrbridge: steps cut upwards, switching back and outer-railed, to terminate in a sheltered ledge of stone. Here, greenery blooms in fragrant profusion, scenting the air and quieting the minds of those who stroll amongst the cultivated rows of cultivars. Flowers, and tiny fruit-bearing trees limn the walkways. Tables and benches scatter organic throughout the rambling concourse, providing easy rest for those who challenged the stairs… or the craft shops beyond the scrolled wooden door at the innermost part of the terraced ledge.


It's evening, sometime around time for the evening meal, which means most of the Weyr's population is elsewhere. That would be, except for workaholics and people who are avoiding seeing other people. Which is which? The garden is always a favorite spot for M'noq in the springtime, and at the moment, he is kicking back on one of the benches, reading a trashy novel that someone left here. Did he just pick it up and start looking at it, or has he been reading here for the last candlemark? Either way, he's somewhere near the middle of the book.

Some people can be both, of course. Amani isn't really avoiding other people, though; it's just an evening where quietude feels a little better than sitting at the high table in the din of the living cavern. She's folded some wherry, veggies, and yogurt sauce up in a flatbread and has made her dinner portable, wandering up to the Garden Terrace and away from the crowd. Spying M'noq, she can't help but smile, especially when she spies what's in his hands. "Are you…actually reading that, or just judging it?"

When it's spring time and the weather is fair, who in their right mind would want to spend any more time than they have to indoors? Certainly not Odesse. And it's not really people that she's trying to avoid. The dolphineer can't spend all her time in the water. And right now, she's pokes her head up from where she had been digging around in the middle of one of the garden beds conveniently behind that bench M'noq's sitting at. "Ye judgin' what?" She doesn't seem particularly concerned about the judging, just mildly curious as she swats at one of those annoying little vtols with a muddy hand.

M'noq is so focused on his book (well, not really his book, but the book he found. He isn't claiming it, nope) he doesn't notice Amani sneak up on him. At the sound of her voice, he jumps, looks guilty… tries to hide the book, then realizes that looks worse. "What? Oh, this? I think it's about my former wingsecond and his weyrmate." Great, he just made it weirder than it already was. He cranes his neck around and looks at Odesse. "I'm not judging anything! I was just looking at this book for a second." And he pushes it aside, just to prove he doesn't care about it.

Of all places Amani would expect to see Odesse, it certainly isn't rooting around in the flower beds up here. She might just be a little startled at the dolphineer's sudden appear, though her expression immediately shifts to one of patent amusement - one that ends up turned upon M'noq in short order. "Oh. One of those," she says of the book the brownrider is shoving aside, sitting down to his left and plucking the thing up to eye the cover. "Mayte and I each have one, too. I've made it a point to not know where they're at at any given moment, since we can't seem to get rid of them." Twisting, she fits the blonde woman behind the with a curious look. "What are you doing in there, Odesse?"

Odesse gives M'noq and his book a very serious look over because possession may be nine-tenths of the law or something. Odie's not exactly a Charter Scholar aside from the part about dolphins, dolphineers and their duties. "Uh-huh… ye were miiiiighty far into that for just a second." And as for her own doings, she shrugs a bit. "I've been lookin'!" For what exactly, she doesn't say, although she does pick up a spring of something, take a little nibble of it, wrinkle up her face in distaste and discard the bit. "Not that."

M'noq arches a brow at Amani. "You do?" He sounds… curious. "I don't want to know, do I? I've heard there's one about K'vvan too, but I haven't gone looking for it." He shakes his head at Odesse. "Don't you know the trick to those books? You hold the book up, then let it fall open… it will usually open to the sex scenes, which are the spots that everyone spends the most time reading anyway." Funny, he seems to know an awful lot about this kind of book. "Ah… what is it you're looking for? I know a lot of the plants in this garden, I might be able to help you."

Amani rolls her eyes and gives a little nod, her amusement returning and the nod turning to a head-shake with M'noq's second question. "I sure don't want to know about most of them." The tidbit about the "trick" is absorbed with fascination. "Are those parts the best-written at least? Not…that I want to read about people I know in the middle of that…" she qualifies, unable to help blushing fiercely. Her attention turns again to Odesse. "And why?" she tacks on to M'noq's question. "You have to know you're going to catch it from the gardeners if they find out your sitting on their cultivars." Or flowers, or whatever the other woman's rear has happened to flatten.

"I'll know it when I taste it!" Odesse shuffles a couple feet to her left where another promising plant is currently residing. Because surely tasting every plant in a garden until you find the right one can't go wrong! But she does have a few more tidbits about what she's looking for. "It's green… but not yer usual green. Got more yellow stripes in it too. For vtols." And right on cue, another one starts buzzing about and she swats it away quickly. As for Amani, she gives another shrug. "Those gardener types tend to be the early morning folks. I don't plan on being here when they're up." Never mind some might want to check on the plants after dinner. There's a snort for the books and their writing. "Ain't none of 'em well writing. People coming up with all sorts of nonsens about shardin' pirates…" And off she goes into some more muttering and vaguely audible cursing probably about the book written about her and Southern's favorite ex-pirate turned bluerider.

M'noq nods his head towards the book, which Amani picked up after he pushed it to the side. "Try it. Or are you afraid of looking? I'm not saying those parts are the best written… but maybe they're the only reason you'd read the book." No one really reads it for the plot, do they? Except now M'noq will never know what happened to the buxom barmaid and her hunky giant. He looks over at Odesse. "You're looking for a plant to attract vtols? I wouldn't think that would be something you'd want to do. I don't recall seeing one like that, and I've been working in the garden every spring since I was a candidate." The place holds a lot of memories for him. "Ah… what was that about pirates?"

"Don't taste yourself into the infirmary. Faranth knows we've had enough of that lately," Amani half-grumbles, trying to think of what Odesse might possibly be looking for. Idly, she tries the trick with the book as she talks and watches. "I think she mean something to keep them away," she counters M'noq, and frowns slightly in thought. "Isn't it…lemon grass? Lemon balm? One of those that does it. I remember Rielle telling me when I was a Candidate. Then the fact that M'noq has been working in the gardens earns a considering gaze from the young goldrider, lips curving in another little smile. "A hobby?" she ventures…though she may end up hearing about pirates before getting an answer to that. Meanwhile, she finds where the book has fallen open and warily parts the pages to see what rears its head.

Odesse rolls her eyes, maybe for the idea of tasting herself to the infirmary or maybe to M'noq's suggestion she's trying to attract vtols. "Naaaah. I'm being mostly careful. 'N they're to repel vtols, not attract them." Amani's attempt at Name that Herb has the dolphineer pause in her search, contemplating it for about three seconds before clapping her hands together with a grin. "Yeah! Lemon balm! That's the one! All the rains down by the delta, there seems to be vtols everywhere!" And the collection of bug bites Odie's sporting on her arms and legs will attest to that. As for pirates, she gives a very dismissive hand wave. "Shardin' pirates. Nothin' but thieves 'n murderers 'n scum no self respectin' captain will take on. Who would write a freakin' novel with a pirate as the lead?" A lot of people. There's probably a whole section of Southern's library dedicated to them.

M'noq is a little worried about Odesse "tasting herself into the infirmary" too, which is why he had offered to help her find something she might be looking for. He smiles faintly at the goldrider as she looks at him. "Right, one of my hobbies. I have a small herb garden growing back at the ship weyr. Remind me to show it to you later. The perennials are just starting to come back. Mostly cooking herbs, no medicines or anything." Not really his thing. He turns back to Odesse and her rant about pirates. "Maybe people like the idea of adventure on the high seas. Or they're imagining all the treaure pirates must have after stealing from people. Who knows." M'noq doesn't find them particularly fanciful either.

Amani nods; she will most certainly remind M'noq to show her this little herb garden of his, novel as it seems. She grins when it turns out she's managed to name what Odesse is looking for, then listens to the rest of the woman's tirade with a little tilt of her head, unsure whether to be amused or to agree…though she's somewhere in the realm of both. Her shoulders hitch a little, a slight nod bobbing her head at M'noq's last. "Seems people can romanticize just about whatever they want…oh." She's still perusing the book, and now flips it shut, blushing as she pushes it away. She doesn't look scandalized; she's long past being innocent, of course. But she does shake her head. "Maybe the appeal is in what's unrealistic. Because I don't think some of that's possible." But fun to imagine for some, obviously.

Odesse isn't going to be slowed down in her search for the magical anti-vtol lemon balm. Or grass. Or whatever it is. She's got a name now, so surely the plant must be right around the corner, although the next one she doesn't even have to taste to know it's wrong, just shaking her head and moving down, although being a bit more careful about squishing plants now that she's somewhat got an audience. "Most the people I've meet who've had an 'adventure' on the high seas ended up wishin' for nothing more than a calm journey." She uses finger quotes and everything. Although maybe her opinion on this is just a BIT jaded since one of her main jobs is rescuing people from ship wrecks. "'N sure. Stealin' from fisher folks is gonna leave such a hoard of treasure… because that's what most boats are used for. Fishin'. If ye got somethin' real valuable to transport well… there usually can be some off duty rider willin' to make some extra marks. Or well, like that one rider that had all them marks fall from his pockets at Weyrwoman Bailey's feet that one time."

M'noq grins at Amani's reaction to the book. He's probably going to tease her about that later. "How realistic do you expect it to be? I'm sure you could find a sex manual in the healers' section of the library, if that's what you're into." And if she's pushing the book aside, he'll just snag it, thankyouverymuch. "If you need more lemon balm, you should plant some in the area by the river. The stuff is native to Southern and grows wild anyway, nothing wrong with encouraging it to grow where you need it. Ask the gardeners to prep some off-shoots, and by the time they're ready, we should have candidates in the Weyr to help get them planted. If no candidates, there's always weyrlings."

"I don't need one, thank you kindly," Amani answers to M'noq's teasing, though she just can't help flushing again. The glint in klah-dark eyes suggests that she may now be plotting how to tease him back, naturally. But later, since his wasn't the sort of tease that allows for a snappy counter. Now they're talking about lemon balm. And marks falling at the former Senior's feet. "Which rider was that?" she asks with a bit of a laugh. "And I'll bet the Healers have a repellant salve, if you're looking for a quick fix. Or I could go grab some from Vtol Swamp Hold up in Igen; they make a killing off exporting the stuff." So to speak.

Odesse scratches a bit at her head as she tries to think about what the name of that particular rider was… but she comes up with nothing. "Can't remember his name. The one that was mixed up with all that people smugglin' 'n the volcano 'n stuff a couple turns ago. Happened at one of the big parties down in the catacombs." Which was actually BEFORE Amani got to Southern since it was that clutching party not so long ago. "'N if ye ain't into readin', I'm sure one of 'em masters could give you a very detailed lecture on the whooooole process that will bore a sane person to tears." And one of the weyrwomen going up to request the vtol and the avians talk from a healer won't get any funny looks at all. As for the offers of salves, she shakes her head. "With the lemon grass… balm… grass uhh… with this, ye can squeeze out an oil 'n mix it in some candles 'n keep 'em away from a whole area for a while. Salves wash off if ye plan on getting into the water 'n back out any time soon."

M'noq laughs at Amani's blush. "I didn't say you needed one, just that you might want one." Yup, M'noq will no doubt be the victim of Amani's revenge at some later point. As Odesse recounts the tale, M'noq nods, her version more or less matching up with what he remembered as well. "I don't remember the guy's name either. It was a couple of Turns ago. He was a sneak, though. Had this whole system to spirit people away while looking where he belonged wherever he was going. Complicated." Which is what M'noq remembers of the whole storyline. He thinks on the lemon balm some more. "I could ask my riders if they've seen any large areas of the stuff. If we need to make candles, it would be most efficient if we could collect a bunch and make it all at once."

"And just why do you think I might want one?" Oh yes, M'noq is going to pay at some point later, especially now that he's laughing at her. BUT back to the lemon balm issue, especially since the incident with the mark-tossing rider is clearly something before Amani's time. Except she has to throw in a very pointed shake of her head to Odesse's suggestion. No need for that, anymore than there is for a manual! M'noq's proactivity about the herb earns a soft laugh. "I think you might have started a project by accident," she observes to the dolphineer. "Really, though, if the vtols are already as bad as you say down along the river, maybe it wouldn't be a bad idea to get repellent candles stockpiled."

"Huh… stockpiled candles…. I didn't check the stores!" And up Odesse jumps with just a very brief shake to try and get most of the dirt off her. She gives a wave to the two riders before she starts trotting off, calling over her shoulder as she does. "Thanks! Imma check in the stores!" And that checking probably won't involve tasting the candles unless she has a stop in the bar between here and there.

"I'll… tell you later," M'noq promises Amani. As for the project bit, he really doesn't mind, since everything he suggested involves assigning work to other people. It isn't like Lynx is going to become the gardening wing. When Odesse leaps up and takes off, he gives her a wave. "Good luck," he calls, then slides a look over to Amani. "I'm headed back to my weyr. Want to come along and see the herb garden?" Also, he's probably going to borrow that book and return it back here tomorrow.

There is a definite slyness to the look Amani returns to M'noq at that, though she's momentarily distracted by Odesse's abrupt departure. "Bye, Odesse! Don't taste the candles!" She can't help tossing that out there at this point. The brownrider's invitation is met with a tilted smile and a nod. "Sure. I can plot while I'm at it." Surely he can figure out what at this point. But she'll happily follow him to go see that herb garden of his…apart from whatever she's planning.

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