Br'er, Q'fex


Br'er asks Q'fex a question of a sensitive nature. Turns out Q'fex is a little more green-eyed than either of them realized.


It is evening of the sixteenth day of the third month of the first turn of the 12th pass.


The Tipsy Kitten, Southern Weyr

OOC Date


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The Tipsy Kitten

Here there be drunkards: a marble bar and the gorgeous array of colored bottles behind it would be enough to draw them in, but more yet lures those to enjoy the recreation the Kitten has to offer. Windows allow light to naturally illuminate the first floor of the tavern in the daytime, while green-tinted glows shine after nightfall. A door behind the bar leads to the tiny kitchen, while a stairway leads above to the rooms available for rent. Among the hubbub and the ruckus, a calamity of tables scatter through the open space, plenty enough for dragonpoker tournaments on restday eve.
To the west, you see a green and a bronze dragon and one runner.

There's dinner on the boards in the Living Caverns, a nice hearty autumn spread. Good, filling fare to bide Southern past a rainy night. Br'er, though, wants NONE of it. He's in the Kitten (sparsely populated at the moment, thanks to the rain, and dinnertime) with a glass of wine, idling picking through a bowl of mixed nuts with tepid enthusiasm. That's been the greenrider all sevenday: distracted and disengaged. By what, well, he hasn't said. But he's obviously having Thoughts, and they're putting him off his feed.

Q'fex is generally clueless in the way of this whole 'thinking' thing. Come on. Think about it. The weyrleader picks his way through the tables with an eye for the lack of population, ends up sliding next to Br'er with nary a slant of eyes askance for the greenrider's antics. Instead he has eyes for the bartender, who is stubbornly refusing to turn around. And until the barkeep turns around, a certain weyrleader can't order his damn milk.

Yes, BR'ER KNOWS. He's been sulking around for a sevenday waiting for the 'what's wrong', and yet! Q'fex's sudden appearance in his life is noted, and elicits a restrained smile. Also a rasped out, "You could always just whistle at him." Meaning the barkeep. Everyone knows Q'fex needs his damn milk.

"Maybe I'd rather just whistle at you." Q'fex's lips tip upwards briefly, the focus of his eyes finally sliding sideways to take in his weyrmate. Finally, the bronzerider sighs — it's a heavy thing, full of discord and perhaps defeat. "Okay, fine. What the hell is wrong with you?" It's taken him a week, he can sound exasperated! (and that selfsame defeated tone.)

Poor Q'fex. If Br'er were a woman, he'd have just been able to brush it off as That Time Of The Month. "…" says the greenrider, helpfully. He fiddles idly with a cashew, spreading salt across his fingers as he works up the nerve. Abruptly, tersely: "Promise you won't cause a public scene, first." THAT'S NOT OMINOUS.

Affronted: "Would I cause a public scene?"

The skull-eye follows. "All the time."

"I don't think you know me very well."

"I know you extremely well," Br'er retorts, "and that's why I'm worried." A pause follows. The greenrider looks to make sure they're relatively alone in the tavern, pale eyes narrowed. Abruptly, bluntly: "I want to go visit Q'ila."

Mouth opens. Mouth shuts. Q'fex brings a hand up to draw thumb and middle finger towards one another over his eyes in a gesture that just speaks MULTITUDES about how wearying this topic is already. "Why do you need to talk to your grandfather again?" comes the OH SO POLITE inquiry, his expression still shielded behind that hand.

"Well." A deep breath follows. The cashew is dropped, half-crushed, back into the bowl. "T'hen," one of Br'er's clutchmates, brownrider and High Reaches loyalist, but not an utter asshole given those qualifiers, "wrote me. He… Q'ila… isn't doing well. After, you know… Vienn." Pause. "And I don't like having unsettled business." There's another pause here, before Br'er, with a trace of his usual affectionate asperity, adds, "And calling him my grandfather makes me come across as perverse."

"Well, go see him." It's said casually. NOT SO CASUAL is the tabletop creaking under the inexorable crushing weight of Q'fex's grip slowly cranking down on the edge like a motherfucking VICE. "I'm sure you guys can have a nice chat." He's such a man. And: "You are perverse," a little less SMITE ALL THE THINGS.

"Q'fex." Br'er is not surprised, per se; he is, however, concerned. After the faintest hesitation, his hand (a bit salty from the mixed nuts) snakes out, rested lightly atop one of the tablecrushers. "I'm not that perverse. Not anymore." Reassuring. He weighs and measures his next words before speaking them, tone terribly careful. "If I invited you along… as, um, reassurance…" because surely Q'ila wouldn't commit a murder with Southern's Weyrleader there, right? "… could you avoid causing a diplomatic incident?"

Dark eyes take in salt-crusted fingers — they study them, as a matter of fact, rather than look up. Somewhere in the midst of all this the barkeep has silently brought Q'fex's milk unbidden… though that shouldn't be too surprising. The bronzerider slants a gaze over to Br'er at the statement of just *how* less-perverse he is these days, and then … well, then is the moment of silence as he GAUGES what exactly his likelihood is of causing an interweyr incident. Excuse him, this takes some silent mental reckoning.

Br'er is a patient man. In… some contexts. He simply sits there, hand covering Q'fex's, waiting. He'll get impatient if Q'fex dallies on choosing what tavern they're going to go eat at. He'll get fractious if there's a too-long delay in getting dressed in the morning. But when one ask one's weyrmate to play plus-one whilst going to visit one's evil ex… a certain degree of patience is an obligation.

They are so dysfunctionally adorable, as a siebar. They really, really are. When Q'fex finally speaks, his voice is as hoarse as if he'd just involved in a multi-arc screaming match against his own wits — and maybe he has, mentally. "I'm not sure if I can promise that, Br'er." When his gaze finally lifts, there's something not OFTEN seen within: dark anger.

They're cute, and terrible. Two awful people who FOUND each other. Br'er weighs and measures this as well, absentmindedly wiggling his hand around to thread their fingers together. His expression is calm and collected, though there's a subtle pinch at the corners of his mouth, a hint that the zen doesn't go all the way down. "If I can -" The thought is started, then abandoned abruptly. "Cha'el offered to go with me, if you'd… rather not." A moment passes. "I just want to put this… him… to rest." Way to phrase that like you're going to take him out back and put him down like Old Yeller, Br'er.

Do dark eyes darken further — entirely irrationally — at Cha'el's name? Perhaps. Perhaps Q'fex is just completely illogical in this moment. He does have the mind to lift Br'er's hand to his lips for a rough brush of a kiss to the back of it, before gently untangling his fingers. "I think… I just need to take a walk." WITH HIS MILK, because he's taking that with him. Q'fex remembers, see. The brig, and skinny-Br'er afterwards, handsy and clingy and desperate. He remembers. "I love you." It's honest. "I just…" He needs to WALK THIS OFF. And maybe beat himself up to the point where he can be the man Br'er needs (or would like) him to be.

It's not like Br'er can't sympathize. Q'fex had to see that man; Br'er had to be him. "I love you too." Pause. Gently, affecionately: "Bring a coat." Because it's still drizzling out, and Br'er meant that first sentence. And love means never wanting your beloved to catch pneumonia.

Because also, hello, who on the face of the planet wants to listen to whiny sick Q'fex? Br'er is WAY SMARTER than to be that man.

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