Mayte, Zeyta


Meandering about the Bazaar, Mayte discovers Zeyta terro-er, shopping for silk. They start to talk and Mayte gets roped into shopping for… dresses…


It is afternoon of the tenth day of the sixth month of the second turn of
the 12th pass.


Igen Weyr Bazaar

OOC Date





All roads in the weyr ultimately lead here, to this center of commerce. Canvas awnings jut out over time worn, sandy cobblestone, sheltering customers and wares alike from the majority of Igen's elements, and funnel scents both mouthwatering and vomit inducing through the thin streets. Almost all store fronts are open air, delineated by sandstone arches with intricately carved facades. The insides of these stone-shingled buildings act as an amplifier for the salesmens' bawled enticements, and are held up by the chipped swirls of marble pillars.

Rukbat reaches its zenith in a blazing glory of early summer, radiant heat baking the limestone structures of thin streets, screened out only by the canvas awning erected over cobblestone booth set up by merchants, or the wealthier facades of shops owned by established families. Zeyta walks among this crowd, blending in with the most conservative of Igen's native women: a modest muslin scarf dyed in powdered blue wraps over her head and mouth, yielding to the swaying hemline of the plain, long-sleeved white dress beneath. Only the proud knot secured on her shoulder designates her a Weyrmember, and an Arroyo wingleader at that. Except she's off-duty, in case her attire, ill-suited for riding, didn't clarify. At present, she's allowed herself to be lured to a purveyor of fine silks, whom she listens to in
unbroken silence, arms crossed, gaze critical.

It's hot outside, so who's not going to fit in with Igen's conservative ladies? Mayte - she comes in her usual shirt-and-pants combo, tucked into calf-high riding boots. Mayte looks pretty pleased with herself today, looking left, then right, and finally heads in one direction only: a vendor of fine fabrics. Still, she'll come abreast of the vendor's other client and finger over the fabrics a little before her eyes fall to the knot on Zeyta's shoulder. Mayte doesn't blink so much as raise an eyebrow but whatever floats your dragon, right? When the Vendor pauses in his recitation to Zeyta, Mayte adds in a cheerful, "Hey there, Wingleader."

A cobra, coiled and poised in a ready position to strike, lashes out at last in a hiss: Zeyta interjects, "Really. That's fascinating." Her bland tone indicates anything but, the puncturing of her words not let fester until, "You want me to settle for your outlandish price when this," here, she grips a corner to uphold it high, out of the shadowed overhang and in
direct sunlight, "already has a frayed edge?" A chiding 'tsk' issues from under her veil, with an accompanying shake of her head in firm rejection of the quality before her. "Why, I could just give a small tug of the end right here, and the whole piece would unravel in a matter of seconds. I'll not pay—" Saved by the goldrider. Censuring herself when an effervescent
greeting reaches her ear, the brownrider shifts, salute quick and efficient. Meanwhile, the merchant gathers his wits for a blubbering rebuttal while she taps her foot and awaits a better price better than the asking one.

The salute is returned with a bit of a grin, but Mayte moves to eye the fabric Zeyta's contesting over: "She's right, ya know." What does Mayte know about fabrics? More like, what does Mayte need to know about fabrics? "S'a clothing disaster just waiting to happen." That is Serious Solemn Face #3. "She could be walking around one day and suddenly her clothes fall off." Mayte fixes the vendor with a very-nearly-disappointed look, "And no one wants that." To Zeyta, Mayte asks, "A fabric like this would make such a lovely chemise, except for when it falls apart." Okay, Mayte, laying it on a little thick there, but she changes course to wondering, "What about that red one over there?" For Zeyta, except the colour is really more of a salmon colour. Mayte STARES at that and shakes her head, "Nope, my mistake. Just not your colour, Zeyta. It'd…" talk about making stuff up, "wash you out." Sorry, is that vendor still standing there?

"Yes, of course I'm right." Not that the validation from an third party doesn't cause Zeyta to balk. Few support her eviscerating shopping strolls through the bazaar. More than a few booths refuse to do business with her, others concede to every demand while quaking in fear. The silk vendor falls in this latter category, just about choking by the scandalous suggestion of a silk chemise — clearly, he never thought to furnish his wife with such a garment (or else stake her out for Thread fodder or stone her in the public square!). "Mm." Surprise doubly stonewalled by a layer of fabric over
her face and a naturally stoic facade, she actually considers the awful salmon offering. "Yes. Well." Where was she? "I need an orange, do you hear me?" Pausing. "Weyrwoman." She's not sure how to navigate this way, immediately wary and trying to reign in her, ah, sparkling personality. "Free afternoon, I presume."

Evidently R'xim and Zeyta don't talk much, but Mayte grins and nods conspiringly, "I hear ya." Casual, friendly. Just for curiosity's sake, "What do you want the orange for? Any particular shade?" Mayte gives Zeyta's face-scarf a pondering look and steps over a pace to absently browse through some lighter browns while answering, "Not exactly free. Just taking an… extended break. How fares Arroyo? Settling in as," a little wave to that shoulder knot, "Wingleader?"

Nope, Zeyta met the poor man once, and chewed him out in so many words before he fled from her. So sad, poor R'xim. "Tangerine, I think they call it. It will match wonderfully with this indigo tunic I commissioned not too long ago from a worthy craft master." Yep, she's laying the guilt on thick, eyes tracking Mayte's progress away from the cowering vendor to the browns. "Hm." She judges for the break (but then, what's she doing here alone, in broad day?). "Arroyo is a work in progress. A challenge, but not one I can handle. I just need to corral all the stubborn young men with
authority issues and subjugate them." Simple as that. "And how goes your duties?"

See, they can bond. "Tangerine?" Mayte's nose wrinkles slightly at the idea, but grudgingly head tilts that it will go over indigo. "Well, that'll be colourful," the junior weyrwoman says but her hand strays over to where some dark purples sit fetchingly next to grey. "Hah. If anyone can manage to corral young men," Mayte says innocently, "And, uh, subjugate them into a more solid fighting Wing, it'd be you." The purple and grey are left behind so Mayte can step back towards Zeyta. "They're doing fine. Holders, guards," fingers flick around the Bazaar, "Meeting with Bazaar folk." That's a list, alright. For a moment, Mayte's face turns dark with annoyance, "And thankfully not with that twerp of a Weyrleader's assistant. I mean, what kind of a title is that?" Disdain. DisDAIN.

"Yes, it's a brilliant color. It makes a statement." And Zeyta is nothing if
not dramatic, pairing rich, vivid hues without considering subtlety once. It's
just not her art. She runs her fingers over the selection of various hues
that might meet her taste, although her eyes are skeptical, highly
appraising. "Well, yes. Failure is not an option. Neither is mediocrity. Or
anything less than excellence." Big dreams for the teeny-tiny, dislikable
brownrider. And boy is Arroyo in for it while her tenure as their sovereign
lasts. "Holders, are a stale bunch," she wrinkles her nose, scarf wrinkling,
"guards need more discipline," a roll of her eyes, "and the bazaar folk
charge too high for cheap goods." Which concludes her judgment of the folks
belonging to that list. A hitch of her eyebrows can't disguise the wide-eyed
curiosity kindled at her complaint. "Ah, I suppose you mean F'dan."

Mayte mms in seeming agreement with Zeyta, watching what she's looking for.
Except Arroyo's more interesting to talk about than colours: "What'll you do
with the ones that don't cut it?" It's an idle question, given what usually
happens when you're cut from a wing, but Mayte's compelled to ask in case
the answer is, "Serve 'em with a nice orange sauce?" From Mayte's wry grin,
she's apparently made a joke. To herself, at least. A little shrug about the
Holders, guards, and bazaar, but the wry look gains a grimace, "He goes by
that name too." It's a confirmation, of sorts. "You've met him then?"

"Not cutting it isn't an option. W'rin already reformed Sandblast to
eliminate the majority of our most dismal disappointments." Zeyta cannot
deny this fact, although leaving her lips it sounds more of a personal
begrudging than honest praise. Fingers spread, wandering over the different
dyed selections, not partial to any particular one meeting her criteria.
"They'll rise to the challenge or made to suffer more than the most remedial
of weyrlings with grunt work. They'll relearn their fundamentals." Under her
regimented supervision of course. Selecting a pleasant seafoam, she lifts it
in her direction, seeming to recommend it to the gold rider. "Ah, yes. I've
made his acquaintance. I am also aware of his so-called punishment. Let's
hope for his and W'rin's sake it doesn't turn into a promotion." Because
hell hath no fury like a Zeyta scorned.

Mayte huhs, then adds, "Well, if anyone'll encourage not slacking off, it'd
be you." It's an easy thing to say, sounding more pat than personal, but
Mayte grins anyways. The seafoam is regarded quizzically: "For you? Sure.
It'd set off the indigo nicely, right?" Sure it will; Mayte's just not
entirely sure. As for the Assistantry of Weyrleadership, Mayte grits her
teeth at the idea for a moment, "Oh Faranth, can you imagine?" Mayte really
has no faith in F'dan: "I bet you'd be out of that knot faster than you can
go ::between::." No faith at all. Mayte's hand pauses on a French grey and
asks, out of nowhere, "Have you considered a print?" Maybe Mayte's been
listening to the Weavers set to wrestle her into nicer clothes.

"Uh huh." Glib, uninterested in affirmation from another, Zeyta discards the
supportive grin, unfolding the length of silk in her hand to drape around
Mayte's shoulders. "No. On you. Seafoam looks terrible against indigo. Pair
this with a cream, if you think it too much flair, offset the pastel's
brightness." Primarily a curator of vintage wares, she also knows her
fashion, able to hold her own against a weaver in conversation. Just visit
her weyr to see the pretty princess dresses and other fantastical ensembles
lying around, unworn. Studying her reaction, she begins to remove the
fabric, gingerly folding it with perfect symmetry, each edge matched to its
partner. "F'dan would not remove me from my knot," she states with
confidence. "I have plenty of prints. I'm set on the tangerine. I fI went
with a version of it involving brocade, it'd be too blinding." Carefully
weaving in casual traces of gossip, thrown into the rumor mill, "What do you
think of his fathering a child with Linny?"

Mayte's expression is a little incredulous as she looks from the seafoam to
Zeyta and back: "That? On me?" If 'ugh' is an expression, Mayte's wearing
it. "I'm into dark grey. Black. Something that doesn't show wine stains
much." Her eyes retrace to the seafoam and she points out a scarlet, "If I'm
gonna go for colour, I like that red there." She means scarlet, really. As
for the revelation of Linny's child, Mayte has to cough, "I'm actually more
surprised he hasn't been handing out greeting cards or something, listing
his accomplishments and that stenciled in gold or something." A nearly
haughty hmph, "I bet you he thinks it's a boy, and it's going to be the next
Weyrleader of Benden or High Reaches or something." So what does she think?
"He thinks too highly of himself and that being a d is an accomplishment in
life. Fortunately," Mayte stresses, "his taste in friend is a bit
better." Friend is notably singular.

"Yes. I see." Zeyta, queen of terse denouncements and withering stares, all
masked behind an expression faultless in its polite presentation except an
exonerating unsettling, unprovable insincerity behind it. Nonetheless,
she returns the seafoam silk to its green cousins, glancing at the reds.
"Mm. It's important to have an expanded wardrobe. Dark colors are suitable
for winter. Wine stains should not be your enemy." Out come all those turns
spent as an assistant weyrlingmaster, delivered lecture-style to the
protesting junior weyrwoman. She selects a rich burgundy next, just for the
feel of it, abiding by her own advice in the end — back to the oranges.
"Hm. Browns and greens are too autumnal. Red could be flattering if we
selected one embroidered in… gold. A gown. You must attend gathers, yes? I
am sure you are in demand at the Igen ones at least." The way she sizes
Mayte up… like a piece of meat, or a porcelain doll for her to outfit
extravagantly. Either or. Scoffing, "Both he and Linny have impeccable
breeding as far as chances of Impression go. Bronze is a definite
expectation for such a child. We'll see how much personality it inherits."
Although it's unclear whose she thinks would be most ruinous. Curiously, she
refrains from offering her own opinion of F'dan on the whole, only
forewarning against any knot-grabbing he might attempt on what she deems
rightfully hers. "Mmm. R'xim is rather useless in his given state. It
little matters how nice a man is, if he can't defend himself, his
wingmates, or his beholden areas from Thread with that gimp arm." She thinks
so highly for someone she met once!

Oh no. Mayte is going through horror, surprise, more horror, and finally
resignation as Zeyta manages to do what everyone except Sadaiya has managed
to ever do: take Mayte gownshopping. Sucka. "I mean, I have a bunch
already," Mayte's definitely gonna try, "And they're pretty nice." Not
saying what colour those are. Gathers are nodded at glumly, "Most of
them…" At least when Zeyta's sizing Mayte up, it's not about taking the
junior to bed. Her last observation on the future personality of Linny's
child (okay, F'dan helped a little), "Fortunately sticks up butts isn't a
hereditary thing." She's funny. Also, Mayte thinks Zeyta's being just a
little unfair: "He'll heal. And if anything, if he doesn't heal right,
he could go teach Weyrlings…" Because the last time a High Reachian was in
charge of that it went so, so well. The junior eyes Zeyta for a second and
asks, "Would you have F'dan on Arroyo?" Like it's a test of character.

"Mmm. We're going to expand your palette. One, solid red and then a seasonal
gown. Think magenta, or a shade of lemon." Zeyta abandons the silk
altogether, conducting a full revolution around Mayte to determine her
proportions, assess her figure, factor in her skin tone. Turns upon turns of
practice showcasing here — to think she's all business, save for her guilty
pleasure found in shopping. (Anything extravagant, constitutes a vice for
her, really.) "Pretty nice will not cut it when you are an emissary of the
Weyr. Which means you'll definitely need one in some yellow,
accented with some onyx jewelry, perhaps." Estimates decided, as she waves
off the grateful silk merchant to wend deeper into the heart of the bazaar,
likely angling for the cloth corridor. "Such a waste, for a bronzerider.
Weyrlings are not to be instructed by our cast aways, either. Their
education is of the utmost importance." She says so dignifiedly. "Yes. You
cannot discount his skill as a dragonrider, whatever fault you find in him
as a man. On that principle, yes. Given the chromatic makeup of Arroyo, no.
I would not upset the balance more than it has already been shaken." Meaning
her leadership, most obviously.

"We?" And yet, Mayte is keeping up with Zeyta anyway as they move away. And
then, "Lemon? On me?" She's both surprised and amused, "You mean my knot
won't be enough?" Perhaps the junior weyrwoman's been getting flak for her
more official wardrobe or someone else is having a word because Mayte's
protests are dying quietly. As for the Infamous Duo, Mayte snorts: "I see
your point about Arroyo." Hopefully Zeyta doesn't turn because for a second,
there's a faint trace of silly grin before Mayte schools it to nonchalance.
Instead, Mayte'll ask, "Do you ever go to the Nightflight for dresses?"
Casual. Real low-key.

"Yes. You need consultation or you'll select dreadful, somber colors for
yourself." Says the woman who appeared at the T-Tourney in funeral attire —
stylish, but dark. Zeyta never renounced hypocrisy, as she speeds along at a
steady tromp, bulldozing her way through the crowd with such intent beneath
her fluttering scarf. "Your knot is never enough. People will call every
decision you make into question. The vain, superficial Hold women will
degrade you behind your back for poor choice in style. It's undermining.

Leave nothing to be questioned but your competence, and then let action
prove that for you," she instructs, ushering Mayte along with an impatient
flick of her fingers, curling in towards her palm to gesture for haste. "Mm.
Yes. Besides, Arroyo needs its morale built, right now." Lucky for her,
she misses the break from character, tossing a glance over her shoulder to
shrug, "Mm. No. Not since they failed to deliver me this vintage lace from
Benden and banned me from the sordid gambling ring their establishment
converts into on a nightly basis. Two separate occasions, I assure you."

Mayte's eyebrow indicates she might be remembering that T-Tourney party as
well, but Zeyta's recitation receives a practiced headbob for each reason.
Heard it. She follows easily in the crowd. An eyebrow raised at the
brownrider's tale about Nightflights, but Mayte doesn't comment on that.
Instead, her question is, "So what are your plans to build Arroyo's morale
then?" as they disappear into the Cloth Corridor, the crowd and various
fabrics seeming to dampen any words they might say, to a casual observer.

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