Daxmer, Vaeslyn


Hours later, Daxmer discovers just why it was that Vaeslyn had looking at him all funny.

Implied nudity, boy kissing


It is afternoon of the fourth day of the fourth month of the thirteenth turn of the 12th pass.


Loft, Southern Weyr

OOC Date 18 Feb 2018 05:00


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Light and airy, this space is interesting moreso due to how accessible it is from a staircase that hugs the outer stretch of the stables: it is frequented by more than just herder apprentices, the sweet and acrid scents of runner sweat, hay and feed commingling with the earthier tones of dirt and manure. It isn't an unlikely location for a winter nap, being often warm and dry and restful.

Struggle though he might, Vaeslyn is not going to make the same mistake twice. He's not about to let the diminutive harper down from his shoulder until they are good and safe. And for Vae, there is nowhere safer than the stables. He's slogging through torrential rainfall by the time his steps lead him into that familiar sanctuary of light and warmth. The scent of hay and dust hangs heavy in the air, but the place is kept in immaculate order, stalls cleaned and aisle swept. Only once he's out of the elements does he stop, leaning forward to put Daxmer back on the ground in a much gentler manner than he was initially hauled up. There's no apology for that, the herder glancing the way of the storm with wary eyes and decidedly ignoring any expressions tossed his direction by what might just be one tiny, pissed-off harper.

There was certainly a lot of energy contained within that tiny and surprisingly light body. Daxmer's futile struggles to free himself go on and on, especially so when the sky opens up and soaks them both straight to the bone. Now there is a pissed off, tiny, drenched and shivering harper failing about and using the sorts of language that make one wonder if he kisses his mother with that mouth. His frame seizes when Vaeslyn pitches forward and settles him back onto his feet, quick to launch himself uselessly forward to shove at the larger and older teen with two open palms bared on stiff arms. "What…" SHOVE, "…are…" SHOVE, SHOVE, "…YOU…" SHOVE, "DOING?!" It was nervous energy really, borne out of seeing what he'd seen in such a short time since he'd arrived, and Dax really was stronger than he looked. Still, with that wet kitten look and all that trembling because he was saturated and cold, it surely does little to impress upon the herder that he was something to be feared at all.

Vaeslyn is not afraid of tiny, furious harper's. What he is afraid of is being smashed to bits as a ship careens into the dock, or being swept out to sea with the rising of the tide. Or watching those things happen to someone else. So there is no apology for taking some liberties with the harper, and bodily removing him when it became apparent that Daxmer's own common sense had failed him. The squinty-eyed look into the storm comes right back to that drowned-kitten as it shoves him with open palms, a step taken in reverse out of surprise rather than because he was forced off balance. "Hey!" huffed indignantly, "Cut that out." A scowl is leveled on all of that righteous fury, prompting clinging drops of water to fall from brow and chin. What was he doing? "Saving your ass." Beat. "You're welcome." But despite appearances, hauling the struggling apprentice from docks to stable had not been an easy task, and Vaeslyn is somewhat winded from the experience, breathing labored as he stands there dripping in the aisle way.

"No! You hey! You cut it out!" Daxmer bites back, shivering and teeth chattering and of course dripping. While the herder takes that step back, the harper is more than happy to take a step in and shove at him some more, ineffectually. Yeah, it's getting him no where, but he does it anyway and even has the audacity to scoff at the heroic gesture, "Saving my…" Dax scowls good and proper as dark brows sink low of amber hued eyes, lifting up the arm that had been used to drag him away and pointing at where there were darkening splotches notably where fingers had once been, "You want me to thank you? For this?" And then he gestures to all of his himself, water just spooshing and splooshing off of him in droves because his formerly warm and toasty sweater was now a heavy holder of much water. "And this?!" Adrenaline was pumping through his system and things were just flying out of his mouth, giving the older teenager one last hearty shove before he growls and stomps his way to the closest heatsource, whatever that may be and wastes no time peeling his sweater up off his body. There was a simple long sleeve tunic beneath it that was also soaked and that comes off as well. In fact, all of his clothing comes off, slapping each piece (with a rather inventive colorful metaphor as punctuation) over this railing or that as close to that heat as possible. Boots are set off to the side, socks too have to be peeled off, and it's not long at all before he's yanking a heavy looking runner blanket from a shelf and wrapped around his shivering and naked form. "What on Pern made you bring us here?" A dark glare is tossed back at Vaeslyn then, not having looked at him once in all the time he was disrobing.

OK so… bruising him was not something Vaeslyn had meant to do. There is legitimate apology and regret for that, and another step back (getting awfully close to that open door, really) that does not require shoving to attain. "I wasn't trying to hurt you. Just to get you away…" you know. From the ship, about to smash them to bits and pieces. The benefits of wearing a weatherproof coat is that while he is wet, it's not nearly as thoroughly as Daxmer is. A long, low exhale is given as the righteously furious apprentice stalks off toward a heat source which, to be honest, is likely to simply be a pocket of warm air in the center of the barn. No fires in the stable; not with all that hay and dust to catch. A few steps are taken, reclaiming the ground that was lost, but rather than go for the harper, he heads for the nearest stall, folding his arms over the top and eyeing the runner within. A glance over his shoulder at the undressing and slapping of clothes, then quickly back again when the stall's occupant decides to come say hi, ears flickering nervously at the sound of the storm. He's not ignoring Dax so much as keeping his eyes to himself, hands stroking gently at the nervous runner. "Because," murmured in a tone meant to sooth and comfort (and very much meant for the equine, not the human), "It's where I feel safest."

Wherever it was warmest really and Daxmer hunkers down right smack dab in the middle, pulling that blanket as tightly across his person as he possibly could. It does a fair job of cutting down on all that shivering but the harpers lips were a touch on the bluish side regardless of the fact that his teeth were chatter more quietly. It hadn't soothed the level of irate much though, "Why do you even care? First you stare at me, then you ignore me, then you're looking at me like I'm this weird thing you've never seen before, then you walk off…" It was confusing and Dax couldn't wrap his head around it, "And now you won't even look at me at all! What is your deal?" Hmm, was the harper as mad as being save as he seemed to be? Debatable. Though it doesn't stop his brows from launching upwards towards the line of his still very much dripping hair, "Eh?" A glance around, "You feel safest in a wooden building filled with ginormous hooved animals capable of trampling you to death. Yeah, sure. Makes perfect sense." A snort and huddles down as best he can, dropping his gaze to the center of the stables and grumbling to himself, though the expression on his face told another story. He was, in a word, terrified…but was trying with all his might not to let it show.

Vaeslyn seems to have assumed that those first comments are more rhetorical in nature, and don't require an answer or explanation, because none is forthcoming. He just stands, leaning against the stall with one arm and stroking his hand down the neck of the nervous animal with the other. "You were getting naked. I'm not going to watch you undress," but he will look over now, head turned in Daxmer's direction as his gaze settles on him briefly. The sudden stiffening of his body makes his equine companion nervous, and a second later she's retreating and leaving Vae alone with nothing to occupy himself with besides the human throwing shade at him over his personal happy-place. He's bristling for that, jaw set as he turns to watch the poor runner pace circles as the storm rages. "Yes, I do. I'd rather be here than in a cavern full of two-faced, lying assholes. You don't like it, you can leave," and there's a hand thrust at the door and the storm raging beyond it. "The Weyr is that way. Sorry I bothered to give a shit. Fuck." Try to do something nice, and get your head bit off; fair to say that Vae has learned his lesson on that one. But his tone, not to mention his body language, is not helping to settle any nerves and so there's a quick shove away from the door so that at least one of them (the runner) has a chance to calm down. Green eyes slide the way of the hunched harper, discerning posture and expression easily enough. It deflates him just a little. "The stable is strong and well-constructed. It's safe."

Daxmer was warming up little by little, that runner blanket he had pilfered doing a fine job of trapping his rapidly escaping body heat from everywhere except the tip of his head. Was that steam rising up a bit from that area? Yes, yes it was. The comment of not watching him undress catches him off guard though, sending amber eyes all round and wide, along with a rapid succession of blinks. Then, shoulders slump. "Well excuse me for being repulsive or whatever…we're both guys, what does it matter?" he mutters to himself but it wasn't exactly all that quiet considering how desperately he was clinging to his irritation. Anything was better than freaking out in front of some stranger that clearly disliked him on site. He even goes so far as to imagine the herder rushing off after shaking his hand to wash it with perfuse amounts of soapsand and water. Ugh, that just makes it worse. At the ire that's turned back on him quite suddenly, Daxmer is quick to startle, head coming up and staring long and hard at Vaeslyn, "Whoa, whoa…WHOA." Yep, the harper was going to take that personally, all of it. Yay. "You are seriously…what is wrong with you?" It's a long hard stare this time, utterly baffled, but has the added bonus of renewing fading agitation. "If the caverns are full of such two-faced lying assholes as you say, then why do you give any of the shits or any of the fucks? Why not let me get smooshed or whatever would have happened had I stayed out there in that…that…" Okay, maybe not so good, because at fifteen turns old his eyes where rapidly filling and making it awfully blurry. He wasn't crying okay? His eyeballs were sweating. A sniff and he jams the heel of one palm against the offending body part, squiggling himself around to put his back to the herder and slump against the railing still sporadically marred with sopping wet harper clothing. Just ignore the shaking runner blanket there, nothing to see here, move along. The reassurance doesn't appear to do any thing on the beneficial side of things as far as sturdy construction and safeness. "I don't want to die here…"

A somewhat confused and blank look answers the 'repulsion' that Vaeslyn is accused of feeling. There is no good defense to be found and so he makes none at all, allowing Daxmer to keep his ill-conceived and rather incorrect assumption as to why the herder had turned away from him. But the rapidly escalating argument is not something he can ignore. Accusations and assumptions on both sides, it seems, culminating in questions that Vae does not know how to answer. There's a quick open-shut of his mouth, a snapping of his teeth that heralds his resolve to say nothing as Daxmer turns bodily away from him. But try though he might, the herder definitely saw those tears pooling. Along with the fear so clearly evident in his posture and voice, it has his shoulders slumping and that tight, angry expression melting right off his face. Another of those long, low exhales comes as he moves toward where the harper is seated. He sinks to the ground, back leaned up against the wall as his head thunks back audibly. "You're not going to die." He's still a bit sore over the insulting of his favorite-place-ever, but he turns his head half-way toward Daxmer and regards him with a serious expression. "I am sorry that I hurt you. That wasn't my intention."

The harper had very little to go on other than notion and assumption, because Vaeslyn wasn't giving him much else to work with. Now that he was wet and chilly, naked except for a itchy wool runner blanket, and apparently UGLY he was just going to turn around and wallow in his own misery. He has no idea what the herder was even doing back there other than being silent. Had he left him there when he refused to return to the rest of the two-faced assholes? Right, he was apparently also a two-faced asshole now as well. Great. He thought he had been polite and pleasant when they had met and it wasn't like it was all that long ago (just a few hours past) so it wasn't as if there was some glaring misstep on his part that he'd somehow overlooked. Not after he'd spent the better part of the morning moving furniture and whatnot replaying the meeting over and over inside his head to the point of driving himself crazy. "Yes I am!" he defends his erroneous decision that this was it, this was how he was going to die. "Either something out there is going to get me…" Like a boat or flying tree part, or whatever else might get blown in from the outside. "…or…." Daxmer hunches even further, "One of those…is going to…" One of what? "It's happened before, okay! It got stung by something…freaked out…started running around all snorting and stomping…and if my dad hadn't grabbed me at the last second I wouldn't even BE here to die…" A soft ironic and discordant sound comes out of the harper then, randomly babbling away, perhaps purely to hear the sound of his own voice "…so yeah…I'm going to die here…I'm never going to be Master Harper of Pern….I'm never going to meet 'the one'…" Those Finger quotes he tossed up in the air there in that moment, instantly regretted, and quickly afterward he pulls the blanket back around him, "…never going to have the chance to fall in love with him…never going to have sex…" He scoffs then, dropping his face into one hand and shaking his head, "I'm going to die a fucking virgin…that's just…" More ironically toned laughter there, "…it's great…perfect really…" Sarcasm, all the way, yep. Angry, bitter, scared out of his mind, and not even realizing he'd just dumped some very personal information into the lap of the guy who seemed to hate him the second he laid eyes on him. So with a growl that sounded distinctly more angry than anything else, Daxmer thwumps against the railing and scrunches down as small as he could get. Which is, quite small actually. Cough. A shaking and uneven inhale inwards and he lets out again in, "I know…" said quieter, lacking anything other than his fear. "I'm sorry I'm an asshole…"

For supposedly hating him, Vaeslyn had expended an awful lot of effort in trying to keep Daxmer alive, and now in trying to reassure him that his demise was not imminent. The harper is subject to a rather focused gaze when he begins babbling on about hopelessness of his situation, Vae apparently attempting to follow his rather dramatic and emotionally-driven train of thought and having little success doing so. Until the mention of running, and snorting, and stomping. Dots connect, and a quick glance is given to the occupied stall across the way, though the runner within has retreated and cannot be seen from this angle. "You're scared of runners," comes blurting out, perhaps insensitively delivered but not intentionally insulting. He's surprised by this information, as it did not occur to him that the location may be as much to blame for the antagonistic mood as the storm and man-handling previously endured. As for all of that rather personal information, Vaeslyn says not a word on it. His feelings on the matter are contained within that head of his, expression revealing nothing. The hand nearest Daxmer lifts, hovering over the blanket-covered shoulder as he seems to debate whether or not to risk touching him again. "You're not going to die," offered once again. "The runners are contained within their stalls. And even if they got out," which, to judge by his tone of voice, the herder finds extremely unlikely, "I won't let them charge you. The storm will abate. You will be able to go back to the Weyr."

Yeah! That was weird! It just made the herder that much more of a mystery wrapped in an enigma of weirdness and it hurt Daxmer's head too much to try and sort it all out. Some people got all quiet when they were scared, others babbled on and on revealing all of their secrets, which the harper appears to be of the latter rather than the former. That blurted realization as Vaeslyn connects the dots, stiffens Dax's shoulders and he can't make himself defend or deny. It shouldn't come as too much of a surprise really, taking into consideration just how small he was compared to a fully grown runner beast. Still, he wanted to be tough and all 'what of it you wanna fight' just like he'd been taught but that was a rather difficult prospect at the moment. Not surrounded by runners, regardless of the sturdiness of the stalls that encased them, and not with the storm ragging on and on just outside rattling this and that rather persistently. That was not a reassuring or settling sort of sound, neither was the thunk and thump of things being tossed against the sides, some louder than others. It makes him jump a bit now and then, doing nothing for the trembling which had less and less to do with how chilly he was. The choice of whether or not they were going to touch again, is removed from Vaeslyn's control, as Daxmer makes a grab for that hand and quickly looks away. His grip was steely and cold, sacrificing the warmth of the blanket over one shoulder for some comforting human contact. "Why are you being so nice?"

Vaeslyn does not seem to be having much luck understanding the harper, either. Storms are nothing new for the Southern-native. Though this one was markedly more violent than most, he seems not nearly as concerned with the rattling roof or banging of debris against the side, as the younger apprentice appeared to be. The revelation of sensitive information, and that his fear of the storm appeared to be compounded by his fear of the runners, is something that Vae can at least slightly comprehend. His hand is seized, which makes the rest of him suddenly rather tense. He might have meant to simply offer a temporary comfort in the form of a gentle pat-pat to that now-bare shoulder, but he does not immediately yank himself away from that touch. "You're freezing," is easily observed, and unnecessarily commented on. "Here," and now he is trying to extricate himself from that steely grasp, at least temporarily, to shrug out of his jacket. Weatherproof and water-repellent, it kept Vaeslyn dry enough that he is not chilled enough to be bothered by its loss. And clearly, Daxmer needed it more than he did. He offers it over, frowning at the question posed to him. "Why would I not be nice?" The counter-question is somewhat guarded, and comes with a reverting of his gaze toward the stall door across the aisle and away from the shivering figure beside him.

Not being surrounded by comforting stone but rather large powerful animals with metal shoes nailed to their feet might have something to do with why Daxmer wasn't as cheerful as he had been a few hours ago. It seemed like a lot had happened since then, and really a lot had. Things had literally gone to shit in a very shot period of time, and seemingly immediately after setting foot in Southern. Bad omens man! The worst! The harder would have to be dead not to notice how stiff Vaeslyn had gotten once he'd taken his hand, and really its only his own desire and need for something real rather then the thought that inhabited his head in a whirlwind to rival the howling outside that keeps him from letting go immediately. It was rather difficult to not take that sort of reaction personally, releasing his gasp as the herder suddenly finds a legitimate reason to shed his touch that he couldn't much argue with. The older teen's skin felt feverish against his own, simple because it was rather hard to retain body heat with practically not an ounce of fat on your body. His gaze drops away and the dark lashes surrounding them lower, remaining thus at the rustling sound of Vae shed his coat, only lifting again once the item was being offered. Finding the back of his head. He'd never really worried or focused on his appearance before, but there was a knot forming in his stomach now, shrugging himself out of the runner blanket and pulling the far-too-large jacket on over all that nakedness. In an instant he was far warmer than he'd been in some time, pulling his arms and legs into the body the clothing item with only his head poking out the top. "I don't know," he replies, softer, quieter, "No ones ever looked at me the way you do before…" His voice trails off, shrugging it off in that teenagery way that implies 'whatever' but certainly doesn't mean it. "…like…I'm going to eat you or something…" It was hard to describe how their first meeting had affected him so deeply without coming across as one of those people that has to find meaning in everything everyone else did, "Not sure what I did…" Daxmer says with a soft huff and a slow return of a smile to his face, fingers popping out from beneath the jacket to brush away the 'sweat' from his cheeks, "…but I'm sorry and…maybe we can be friends?" It was scary also, to be in a new place, without a familiar face to turn to.

Movement masks tension, and gives Vaeslyn an outlet for the dispersal of nervous energy. The storm did not frighten him. The runners did not frighten him. But perhaps the harper did. Furious and raging at him, there was no concern. But huddled beneath a runner blanket, looking thoroughly miserable and clutching at his hand was apparently challenging him in some manner. There's a hard look to the stall, especially when it becomes clear enough that blankets are being shed and jackets are being pulled on. A slow, apprehensive glance back toward Daxmer comes when he's speaking. An amused snort comes with the re-thunking of his head back against the wall, and a hard, pointed look toward the harper apprentice at the apparent mystery of the source of Vaeslyn's misinterpreted looks. It's one of those long, searching, ultimately inappropriate stares that remains for far longer than it ought too, drifting down to the curl of his lips at the slow return of a smile and lingering there while apologies are made and offers of friendship are delivered. And then back, up to amber eyes to try and catch his gaze when he decides, "Alright."

Was all that avoidance nervous energy? Daxmer couldn't tell, nor was he gifted with the ability to delve deep into the psyche of another person to reveal their deepest darkest secrets. So, he had to guess. That Vaeslyn was frightened of him would never likely come up in conclusion, considering the guy shrugged off him shoving at him unrestrained so easily, not to mention carried him off tossed over his shoulder as he had. He could only surmise that the older teen found him revolting somehow, giving him doubly a reason for covering up as much of himself as possible, but it doesn't seem to help matters much when he's being looked at like that shortly thereafter. It makes Daxmer self-conscious somehow, bringing heat to his cheeks and making his stomach twist into a greater knot that flutters somehow. Because yeah, that was weird. It worsens the longer that those eyes remain on him, very nearly dropping his own out of the sheer intensity of it, but there is…agreement? You would think that someone just handed the harper a million marks from the way he brightens as a result, his smile spreading nearly to the level of brilliance it had in the bowl earlier, the sun peeking out from beneath a passing storm cloud. "Really?" he asks, hopefully. Maybe he didn't get what he'd done wrong, but it mustn't have been that horrible if Vaeslyn was agreeing to be his first real friend at Southern. It's reason enough for relief to wash over him and with it, more eyeball sweating, which he tries to swipe away as quickly as it appears. "I'm so glad…"

Revolting, no. The look that Vaeslyn is fixing Daxmer with really, really, did not convey a feeling of revulsion, though perhaps all of that turning away business has left the wrong impression. Now there is a pointed and lingering look that drifts from lips to eyes, and bringing with it a certain intensity that had nothing to do with fear. A rough sort of inhale comes with the smile, and back comes that briefly blank-faced look as thoughts collide. A deep breath is taken, briefly held and then released in a long and steadying exhale. Grounding himself. It's the tears that really bring him back, and a bit of that heat and focus trickles away at the sight of them. "Why…?" and he shakes his head. Mind boggling really, that relief-induced emotional response.

It should be apparently by now that whatever lines Daxmer should have been reading between, he just wasn't getting it. Impressions already in place, the shift and change in them, make the harper feel strange. Naked, despite the nice warm coat encasing the entirety of his body save for is head, a head that would have murdered for a towel but at least wasn't dripping quite so heavily anymore. Completely oblivious, yep, even with the change in the herder's breathing as he looked at him like that. Then, entirely focused on that rush of warm release that came with relief that even if he was disgusting, the older teen was willing to be friends. He could handle being gross, that was fine, but being purposely avoided all the time would make living at Southern a very uncomfortable experience. "I don't know," he says in response to that flabbergasted question, "I just…I don't know what I did…and if it's my face…I'm sorry…I can't change the way I look…I mean I could wear a bag or something over my head or something if that helps…" Um, yeah, okay that's plausible and very reasonable. "But really…I'm just so glad to have a friend here…" It was all coming out in a rush again, words flowing out as soon as they came into his head without even a single moment of pause, "…I only just got here and then there's a storm coming, and everyone was rushing around and shoving things at me all of a sudden and then you came and you looked at me like that…and dragging me out of danger to a place full of runners and it's scary…" Yep, still babbling away, until he seems to realize it and takes a breath at least, letting out it out again unevenly. "Oh, I'm sorry…" Soft melodic laughter sees the return of a smile to his lips, the flush of his cheeks renewed in force as he slides his eyes off to the side. Seems that nervous energy, was contagious.

"Your face…" and now Vaeslyn is looking at Daxmer like he's crazy. Because he is. Stark, raving mad. "You think…" The sentence does not see completion, perhaps because the notion that the harper thought himself somehow ugly is so utterly ludicrous that the herder cannot comprehend it. "You're joking." Flatly and firmly delivered, because there was no way on Pern that he hadn't looked into a mirror at some point in his life. Someone, somewhere, had told this kid he was beautiful, Vae is sure of it. Dax is speaking, babbling really, and Vaeslyn is moving closer. He's leaning forward as if to better hear him, seagreen eyes tightening some as he peers incredulously at the harper, mouth pulled into a frown. It doesn't appear that he hears most of what is said, for just as he's recounting the actions on the dock there is a hand reaching out to grasp at the leather of his jacket. It pulls Daxmer toward him, just enough really, so that when Vaeslyn's knees find the ground and he's leaning forward, there is very little distance between them. He's telegraphing his intentions, eyes once more on that mouth that insists upon moving, spilling apologies that are wholly unnecessary and briefly unwelcome. "Stop talking," he murmurs, voice rough but pitched low, his face so close that the breath of his words might be felt against his lips. A second later and he's kissing him, putting an end to protests and excuses alike.

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