Who

Nathanael, Linden, Kultir, Nevik, Sabina

What

Snow bathing, streaking, and mortifying poor Sabina. Teenage candidates have all the fun…

When

It is sunset of the nineteenth day of the second month of the second turn of the 12th pass.

Where

Ice Fields & The Springs

OOC Date

 

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Ice Fields

The air is fine and crisp and sharp and spare, threatening to vanish within the lungs of those who risk such altitude. Vast and sprawling lies the ice shelf of the Southern continent, bleak as far as the sharpest of eyes can see. Here there is meddling by mortal forces, a road ice-cut and gravel-trod from the mountain pass below to the looming caves ahead.


Right, so there are PROBABLY chores to be done. But the thing is, the candidates have been REALLY GOOD. And some of the northern wildlings have some amazing stories. One of them involves an old ritual of theirs to test manhood. Upon hearing of this, Nathanael takes it upon himself to dare every single male candidate into said ritual. Thus he and several others are gathered outside of the hold, near a drift of snow. "So, ye gotta take all ye clothes off, 'n jump int' 'e drift. Stand f'r as long as ye can, 'n then jump when ye figure ye ain't able t' no more."

Linden of course accepted the dare with a grin. "How long do they usually last?" What is their /goal/?

Kultir is one of the Candidates the young Seacrafter has dared to do this and so is currently looking just a little doubtful as to the validity of this supposed 'manhood' test. "More like to see if you're silly enough to lose your manhood, Nathanael." He chuckles softly and shakes his head at the youth but he's promised that he'll do this so … outer coat is shucked and laid out to receive the rest of his clothing.

Nevik is a bit confused by this 'ritual'. As he's been off helping with the healers and sent here and there, he's not had a lot of time to have some of those great 'bonding' moments with the others of the white-knot. When he heard that the guys were getting together to do 'something fun' he was glad that he could tag along. Standing outside with the boys he can't help but look gob-smacked at the idea. See guys naked. Eh. See naked guys frolic in snow? Could be fun. Be one of those guys? Yeah - about that. "Are you seriously going…" he began to ask Kultir but paused mid-querry as the man starts to shuck off his outer coat. "Uh… so this is," he starts to comment and then is paused again as another guy takes off his coat. Oh well, he can't really think of a good reason -not- to join and starts peeling.

Nathanael is quick to shuck off his clothing, sparing Linden a glance while he does so. "Jus' as long as ye can be! Figure, if'n ye're able t' be standin' it f'r just a while, 'n ye're a man!" A slight pause as the small candidate PONDERS, "though, guess ye already are, but 's just fun." Off comes that shirt and it gets thrown as Nathanael works on his rope belt.

Linden strips down too, swiftly, piling his clothes and hopping about. Socks are last and then with gasping, grunting, laughing noises he turns and flops backwards into the drift, arms spread wide. FWOOMPH. Vanished. "Shards and shells and Faranth's blue BALLS!"

Inner coat, thick woolen sweater, cotton tunic are all pulled off, Kultir isn't at all body-shy after so long of living in the Weyr, and tossed onto his outer coat to keep the snow from getting on those warm garments. Boots are unlaced and tugged off and stood upon while bootliners, socks and then trous are tossed onto his coat leaving him completely bare to the frigid temperatures. "Whoo! Chilly!" The young man moves off his boots and flops down into the drift near where Linden is sending a wafting of the crystalline snow up to float in the prevalent breeze.

Nevik is not, what you might call, shy about baring his all. He is, however, devious. As soon as the other guys are jumping into the snow drifts, the naked, rusty-haired healer's apprentice, has gathered up his third snowball and takes aim at Nathanael's crotch, "First one to leave loses…right?" His voice is a bit strained as he's fighting off the initial shivers that run up and down his spine as his body fights to hold onto its internal heat while he's doing something foolish and manly.

Nathanael dives into the snow right after Linden does, as the worst of the curses learned from turns working on a deck roll off his tongue. In the snowdrift he is shivering instantly, as the cold seeps what little warmth he has in his body. Standing up, he still is hip deep in the drift as he looks at Nevik. "Don't you e'en be thinkin' 'bout it!" His voice is a LITTLE high pitched.

Linden lays there…and lays there… He makes it /maybe/ 30 seconds before he's bounding up, shivering. "Okay. Now what?" he asks, grabbing for his clothes. "Because I won't /be/ a man anymore less I can get warm!" He's grinning though, through the teeth chattering.

Kultir scrambles to his feet though he doesn't leave the drift. He glances toward Nevik and grins as he sees the young Healer gathering up snowballs and bends to make one of his own to pack loosely and toss in the kid's direction. "Come on, Nevik! Jump in the drift, man." He grins at the cursing the young Seacrafter looses, his own teeth chattering against the cold but Turns of practice letting him ignore the cold — for the most part and for a short time. "What happens when we can't stand it no more, Nathanael?"

Nevik tosses one of the snowballs, the one in his hand, at Nathanael and dives into a nearby drift to potentially hide himself from reprisal at first. Of course, there's no real logic in throwing a balls of lightly-packed 'cold' at someone who is already inside a drift but there's just something comical about a naked snowball fight. As soon as his body made contact with the white powder the important parts start to retreat up and inside him for safety. Teeth now chattering, he hops up and starts to make another missile.

"We shardin' be gettin' up 'n runnin' f'r 'e springs afore we ain't men!" Nathanael is giggling as he echos Linden and scrambles out of the snowbank himself to scoop up clothing. "Last'un there be an piece of rottin' fish poop!" Is that even a saying? It is now. Scrambling Nathanael runs barefoot into the hold, at least having the decency to hold his clothing low as he runs.

Linden shivers, slipping his feet into his boots without socks, half dressed, and bolting after his friend

Kultir laughs at Nathanael's comment and scrambles out of the drift to snatch up his clothing, holding them over the embarrassingly shrivelled bits. His longer stride is not necessarily a benefit since he's got to try to keep his footing on the icy ground both outside and in as they race for the Hot Springs and trying to maintain a bare minimum of propriety as they run through the Hold.

Nevik grabs his clothes and follows the others inside, his feet flop-slapping against the cold stone and ground as his near-white skin seems all the more pale for his participation. But, there is at least the idea of the hot springs. Oh yeah. With only a faint wave at a passing worker, he just shakes his head and adds, "It's a candidate thing," as if that would explain the entire scene.

The Springs
HOT SPRINGS. Right now this is still in a huge state of disarray, but it is WARM in here… nicely warm. The room slopes downwards into vast pools of water, and it's a nice place to hang out from the chill of the outside.

There is a bit of commotion as the candidates flash through the hold heading for the deepness of the springs. Nathanael is giggling every second of the way. Half way through he drops his socks, but seeing as he is naked AND cold, he doesn't stop for a moment to pick up them up. All of his clothes are about to spill out when he jumps into the nearest of the hot springs, once again letting out curses for the sudden RISE in temperature.

Linden at least has pants and boots on as he runs after Nathanael, shivering as he strips off again to follow his friend into the heat. "If I get sick again I'm punching you," he shivers, water up to his chin and teeth chattering.

Kultir is hard on Nathanael's heels, his own clothing getting tossed to one side as he cannon-balls into the deep pool and sends up a splash to soak anyone else already in the pool. Oddly, it seems that the young man has actually managed to aim that splash to swamp the jock and the prissy little female that's always trying to get some of them in trouble.

Nevik is in a goodly-paced jog behind the others. He wasn't exactly the last but he didn't break first either. Running with a bundle of clothes held before him like one might carry a child in the crook of his arm, he follows into the room and drops the bundle near the edge of one of the small pools and follows Kultir into the water, rather cannon-ball-ish.

The benefit of not having put any clothing on is that Nathanael is able to relax into that water the second it washes over him. A huge grin still splits his face as he wipes blond strands of hair from his face. "What ye think? 'e Southern wildin's 're awesome."

Sabina has been summoned by Linden via the RP Invite command!

Linden shivers into the water, squirming a bit before he mostly settles, wincing. "I think we're men n-now, yeah?" The cannonball splashes have him ducking, but the wash of hot water…he ducks beneath the surface and holds himself there for a few moments, soaking in the heat.

Someone must replenish the towels and other bathing necessities at some point. In an effort to indulge in the warm air of the springs for a little bit Sabina has decided that person will be her. She strides into the springs with a large basket supported on her hip.

"Sabina!" Nathanael's voice echos out as he sees the woman. Standing up in the water he waves at her, trying to get her attention. "Linden, be lookin'!" He reaches out to shove at Linden's shoulder.

Linden grins. "Hey, Sabina!" he waves with a wide grin, shoving back at Nate's shoulder. "What? I see her."

Kultir surfaces with a fling of his hair and lifts his hands to slick it away from his face. Hearing Linden's shivering comment, he laughs softly and sends a small wave toward the boy. "Hey! I was a man before that little stunt." And he's got the kids to prove it! Turning to look in the direction the younger ones are looking, he nods at the young woman restocking the towels and smiles a greeting.

Sabina is eyeing the array of clothing littering the floor. It's enough to give her a complex! Surely there should be some order here. Whose clothes belong to whom?! How will anyone know? The sound of her name on someone's lips has her glancing over at the pool. She flushes from head to toe and makes every attempt to maintain some sense of propriety by looking at the hair on the boy's heads. And not a smidgen lower! "Who is looking for me?" She smiles and shifts the basket on her hip. "Hello again Linden. How has the day treated you?"

Nevik is resting comfortably within the water, careful to keep his mid-section well below the water line as the rush of warmth that has flooded his body has caused things to 'wake up' as it were. No real cause for embarrasement so long as there were only guys around but with Sabina here he has become oddly aware of his own nudity.

Nathanael has lived at the weyr for long enough that nudity doesn't really bother him much any more, though he is more careful when there are ladies who are also naked. "How was ye date ma'am?" Nathanael glances over at Linden, he actually hadn't gotten a chance to ask with all the business.

Linden tries to /kick/ Nate under the water, eyes narrowing. Is he psychic? « Shutup shutup shutup shutup. »

Kultir lounges in the hot water and glances from Nathanael to Linden to Sabina and back to the boys again, a sandy brown eyebrow rising slightly in amusement. His own reaction to the sudden warmth visible yet distorted by the waves raised by the movements of everyone in the large pool so of less import to him than figuring out how one of the Candidates managed to go on a date with a young woman. "You're holding out on us, Linden?" He can't help but tease the teen when he sees that look going toward the young Seacrafter.

Loaded supply baskets get heavy fast and Sabina is feeling the burn in her arms and upper back. She turns to head for the cabinet where things are normally kept. But Nathanael's innocent enough question has her skidding to a halt on the damp floor. The boisterous activity of the candidates has left it a tad slick. "I'm sorry what?" She half turns and looks at Nate in surprise. There was no date actually. More of an ambush to be exact. Kultir's comment leaves her stammering incoherently. Her creamy skin turns a decided and very much embarrassed shade of pink. She'd had no 'date' with Linden. He's like her little brother so.. yeah NO.

"No' Linden," Nathanael rolls his eyes at Kultir as he sits back down in the water. Turning back to Sabina, "'e one what was with 'e h…" Nathanael has to stop talking abruptly, when Linden's kick hits him, to turn back to Linden. "What be that f'r?"

Linden leans over to Nate, hissing at him. Linden mutters, "… … … … … TALKING … … No one's … to …" to Nathanael.

"Are you going to sit there in the water while she is carrying that heavy basket? Perhaps you should get out and give her a hand?" The question emerges from the rusty-haired, pale-skinned youth with a matter-of-factual tone with a hint of respectful manners bread from his foster parents. Granted, he's probably just stirring the pot a little but it all seems to be something that guys do - picking on each other when one seems to have the potential for a romantic connection. He gives the man a second to process the question and while he waits he grabs his nose with one hand and bends his head backwards to wet the whole of his hair, slicking it back against his head like a well-worn leather helmet.

Sabina finds herself ignoring modesty and looking from face to face among the boys and man gathered. Obviously Kultir has no clue and so her eyes flick to Nevik. How many of the candidates know about that little prank?! She watches Linden lean over to whisper furiously to Nathanael. "Um.." she glances at the basket on her hip and back at the occupants of the springs. "That isn't necessary!" Oh please don't let one of them try to help her! Why does the floor never swallow her up?! She finds herself hoping it will often enough lately. "I'll just put these things away." She gives Linden a LOOK, "I should really let you all get back to what you were doing." Before she showed up and incited awkward questions.

Nathanael flushes red as Linden gives him a talking to about the SECRET. He never thought about it that way. Nevik recieves a slightly dark look, before Nathanael is scrambling out of the water and reaching for a towel to wrap around his waist. "I'll be helpin ye ma'am!" At least he has that towel?

Linden gives Sabina an apologetic look, and he sinks lower. He's not going to help, no. He's nude. And right now…he'd be better off hanging the towel /on/ himself rather than wrapping it /around/ himself. Stupid ice then heat.

For once Sabina isn't the shortest person in a room. Strange how unimportant facts like that stick out when a person is trying not to die of terror. It isn't bad enough that the rest of the staff have been making remarks to her about the 'date'. Now she has to be concerned about the candidates! Oh Renalde will likely ship her off for sure at this rate. "Oh! Uh, well.." She looks at Nathanael and is beyond grateful the boy wrapped a towel around himself. "Thank you." She walks over and sets the basket on a stool.

Nevik seems surprised that Nate jumped out of the water to help. He is probably the most brave, if not the most daring candidate but still there's a bit of a shocked expression as he idly enjoys the warmth coursing through his system. Oh look, a scrub brush. Reaching onto the ledge where he's rested his back, he grabs the wooden handle of the brush and absently pat-pats the brushy end on the water's surface while watching those gathered. As if in comedic timing, he slap-taps the brush on the water and then pops it up to full 'attention' with a near spring-like flick as he turns to Kultir, "So…you think they'll send us back soon?"

Nathanael, alas, is very use to being the shortest person in the room. It has only been in the last few months he has joined the Nika-sized part of the weyr-gene-pool. Scrambling over to Sabina he doesn't even seem to realize that the towel around his waist is wrapped a bit awkwardly. "'e Headman's settin' things up all 'e same, jus' like 'n 'e Weyr, right? Towels be at eye level, 'n soaps higher?" Clarification.

Kultir chuckles softly as he watches Nathanael scramble out of the water, his eyes flicking to the young woman as she blushes and seems more embarrassed than the teenagers are. When the young Healer lounging in the water nearby asks a question, the young man turns his attention on the teen not tormenting Sabina. "Hmm? Oh, I've no idea. I figure we're here till the eggs are ready to crack. I guess another sevenday or two … three if we're particularly unlucky." He shrugs slightly as he gives the youth a wry grin as if to say it can't be soon enough for the young man.

Nevik nods and tries to make small-talk with Kultir while towels and soap are stashed away. The idea of someone accidentally tripping on a bar, losing their covering and landing sprawled upon the ground? Yeah - he's staying right where he is in the water. -IF- it does happen to someone it won't be him. "Yeah, I've had to keep my flits down at the Weyr. They hate it up here. I brought Tweet up once. He hid in here the entire time."

Sabina opens the cabinet and creaks the doors wide to reveal the shelves within. Nathanael's question is an honest enough query. So why does she find herself blushing again at mention of the Headman? Oh she really needs to get a grip or make an unladylike retreat. But servants don't run away when there is work to attend to. So she nods her head and manages a smile she hopes doesn't look as awkward as it feels. "Yes, that's exactly right. And arranged along the bottom are the scrub brushes and such."

Linden will make an unladylike retreat. Leaving the water, he hastily dries himself and dresses. "I'm gonna go, that was fun, Nate, good idea." He grins at his fellow Candidates, dips into a slight bow for Sabina, and then dashes out again.

"'s what I was figurin'. I had t' be stockin' 'e shelves more'n once after 'e ships was comin' in." Reaching over into Sabina's basket Nathanael bends over to start putting those scrubbers at the bottom. Sadly, towels that are awkwardly tied on, don't really stay on when one is moving. And so that towel slips right off of Nathanael's hips.

Sabina feels slightly guilty for the accusing look she'd given Linden earlier. When he is fully dressed and bowing out she waves goodnight to him. "Sleep well." It's hard to hold a grudge for that boy! With a soft sigh she turns back to the cabinet. Just about the time that Nathanael's towel hits the floor causing her to gasp. Oh for the love of..! Scrambling backward she quickly adverts her eyes. "Perhaps I should come back another time." Like never. Is never good? She'll learn to bathe in a bowl.

Just as Kultir is about to reply to Nevik, he is divebombed by a small green. Looking up, he frowns at the little green and lifts a dripping hand for the little lizard to land on. The firelizard cheeps and scolds as she lands and bends to nip at the tracker's fingertips though she doesn't bite hard. "Alright, Naymah … give me a few minutes." Glancing at the younger man, he shrugs. "They want fed. I'll see you guys back in the dorms." Pushing himself away from the edge of the pool, the young man wades out of the pool and snags a towel to wrap around his waist before bending to snatch up his clothes with just a bare flash of his backside at the others in the chamber.

Nevik ponders the idea of feeding his own flits and turns his back to the room to crawl out of the hot pool and dry off. "I need to get mine fed too…don't be gone too long." He comments though there doesn't seem to be an alterior motive hidden in his voice.

Nathanael actually does flush red when that towel hits the ground. He scrambles after it and pulls it on before turning around to Sabina. "'m real sorry ma'am." When the other candidates slowly fade out, the smallest ducks his head slightly. "I hope Linden 'n I didn't be makin' ye unfortable… 'e headman's a real good guy 'n Linden was SWEARIN' ye 'n he were likin' one another…"

As the candidates one by one find a reason not to be here the room is getting much less crowded. It suits Sabina's peace of mind. Less chance of yet another embarrassing moment. Or at least she had hoped. On the upside Nathanael doesn't take long to swath himself once more in the towel. The words pouring out of his mouth once they are on their own are another matter entirely. "The headman is a wonderful man," she finds herself saying softly. "That isn't the issue at all." The issue is she likes the headman far too much for her own good!

"So… do ye like him? I didn't figure he liked any'un." Because the headman is made out of ICE. Nathanael checks his towel before bending this time, and putting away the supplies Sabina has brought into The Springs. "But, he ain't done nothin' t' Linden 'n I 'cept t' be cleanin up, so… mayhap?"

Sabina is not at all sure how to go about answering that first question. It isn't as though she is going to tell a young boy the actual truth of the matter! Oh dear, no. "I don't think it's so much that he dislikes people actually. He is just a very busy man with an important job." That will work! Dancing around the does she like the man question. Hefting a stack of towels, she slides them into the cabinet. "I've not known him to be unfair in any of his expectations. He simply expects a person to do their job well." She flicks a glance at the back of Nate's head. "We are all very lucky that he was understanding of that little setup."

Nathanael glances upwards as the last of those towels get put into place. "Ma'am, I ain't ne'er seen 'e headman be unfair. Figured… once he was knowin' that ye ain't 'e one what did 'er… So…" Nathanael is going to push ONE LAST TIME, "Do ye like him?"

The evening would have gone perfectly if not for that messenger who burst in at the worst moment. It's one thing for a man of Renalde's rank to dine discreetly with the help. And another altogether for the Hold to be buzzing about the fact. It makes her as nervous as a trundlebug on a slippery slope. She steps back as the last of the items are put into place. Nathanael's pushiness draws a slight frown to her lips. "Would it really matter if I did?" She's the help! A person who serves and cleans and.. well just not the RIGHT sort of person! "He is an incredible man," she admits with a shrug. Not admitting directly that she likes the Headman. "And I would count myself lucky to even be noticed." Oh but she was noticed! He asked her to have dinner with him again. Just didn't say when. Could it be that he was merely being polite in an awkward situation?

A wide grin flahses across Nathanael's face. "I'll be takin' that as ye did. 'm glad." Nathanael pats that last towel and turns around to Sabina. "Ma'am, 're ye gonna be tryin' t' come t' 'e hatchin?"

Sabina makes a huffing noise and just shakes her head at the boy. Not arguing with him, but still not confirming a single thing. "Linden and Niyati asked me to," she admits when he asks after the hatching. "I promised that I would try." Providing someone like her can manage to get a ride clear to the Weyr for it.

"I'll be makin' sure ye're gettin' a ride. Mayhap 'e rider what brings 'e headman can be bringin' ye too!" With that last cheerful thought, Nathanael wraps his arms around Sabina in a brief but fierce hug. "I should proly be gettin' dressed 'n what." With that rather not-quite-a-farewell, Nathanael is scooting off towards the dorms pausing only once to scoop up a pair of pants that had dropped as the candidates ran from their snow bath.

Sabina opens her mouth to tell the boy not to meddle in business he has no right to. But before the words can cross her lips he surprises her with a hug. She wraps the boy up in a warm embrace before turning him loose. "Don't.." and the boy is gone. Lugging his pants and still wrapped in a towel! He'll scandalize the Hold running around in the near nude! But what is she to do about it now that he's already gone? Nothing she can do. So she glances around the room and grimaces. What a mess! With a sigh she heads toward the mops that are tucked in a corner. It wouldn't do to leave the room looking like this after all. And so she will spend the next hour or so cleaning and stewing.

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