Nathanael Quentin


Just a little bit of egg watching with some… extra help.


It is late night of the sixteenth day of the first month of the second turn of the 12th pass.


Cramped Tunnel

OOC Date


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Cramped Tunnel

This tiny, cramped little cave was once a lava tube that's since become hollow. Half-moon in shape, the floor is littered with sharp lava rock, and the high ceiling boasts of impressive stalactites that reach down towards the ground like huge, thin fingers. The air is not as oppressively hot as one might imagine; the stone itself aids in cooling the small cavern down. Not to mention, the extremely high ceilings do a lot to funnel the humid heat upwards, allowing cooler air to settle. However, tall boys and girls would find this room exceedingly difficult to navigate, especially given the rather wicked and majestic stalactites, but the view is worth it. Not only does the small opening have the perfect vantage point of the creamy, black and white sands, but provides a close-up view to the eggs and their sitting parents than might be comfortable to some. Why, an adventurous Candidate might be able to reach out and touch one… but that wouldn't be advisable! Nor would speaking too loudly… this cavern — as close as it is — would be close enough for those on the sands to hear the echoes of those within!

Timor: moon5.jpg
Belior: moon2.jpg

Tucked amongst the rocks, with a clear view of the Hatching Sands and its burden of eggs, Quentin sits, one leg stretched before him, the other angled at the knee to support one arm, his back resting against a particularly tall stalagmite. Though still dressed in his masquerade finery - the leather and fur vest, the tight pants, and the thigh-high boots, his mask has been removed and now rests atop another jut of rock, a canine sentry staring down the tunnel that leads back to the barracks. Sweat glistens in his curly mop, and his face has been inexpertly cleaned, black streaks of paint still apparent on his tanned skin. His dark blue eyes stare broodingly towards the Sands, and in one hand sits a familiar silver flask.

Nathanael has spent a majority of his time up the Ice Hold, purely by choice, switching off with whomever will switch with him to get the time with the ice and snow. He still even wears some of his northern gear as he slips down the narrow passageway towards the break where the eggs can be viewed. "Oh!" His voice is too loud for a second as he notes the presence of the other canididate. Dropping it lower, "'alo Quentin."

The silver flask bobbles slightly as another voice sounds, but before he even glances towards Nathanael, Quentin raises it to his lips, taking a gulp of whatever liquid is within. "'Allo, Nate," he replies, voice husky, and he finally tears his gaze from his contemplation of the clutch to study his fellow Candidate. Cold-weather gear is taken in, and eyebrows arch curiously. "Aren't you a bit hot?"

Nathanael raises an eyebrow as the pale light glances off of that flask. But he's the last person who is going to question the contents. As he moves closer to that crack Nathanael shrugs off his northern coat, laying it over an arm. "A li'l, but ain't nothin' what canno' be bein' handled. Ye lookin' for bein' alone?"

"Alone? No. Just… did you see the masquerade? So many people." Quentin lifts the flask, turning it this way and that to catch the faint light from the Sands, then lifts it to his lips again before offering it towards the other Candidate. "I thought it would be fun - I like parties," he adds, almost defensively, "but it was just a bunch of grown-ups acting like runners." Say what? "Didn't really feel right there, so… here I am. Surprised to see you back here," he adds, tilting his head to meet Nate's eyes. "You've been at the Hold almost non-stop since they first started sending us." No accusation, just a simple statement of fact.

A rather bright smirk crosses Nathanael's face as the candidate describes the party. "Southern has a rather… unique way of lookin' at parties." There is genuine fondness in Nnathanael's voice for the party, despite the lackluster recommendation from the other teenager. The coat becomes a sea cushion as the small candidate folds himself into a curve of te wall with a good view of the sands. "Aye. Ain't ne'er seen snow afore, 'n m' wantin' t' be experiencin' all as much as I can be." A slight longing reaches out in his voice as he brushes sandy blond hair out of the way.

"You should try Keroon in the winter," Quentin replies as he pulls the flask back, unperturbed by the other Candidate's disinclination to partake. Instead, he takes a long pull himself, breathing deeply after. "The plains covered in snow, as far as the eye kin see. And stupid ovines gettin' lost in it," he adds, with a faint chuckle. Whatever is in that flask isn't just water - his drawl is becoming more pronounced for every sip he takes. "Ever tried t' find a ball o' white fluff in th' snow? Ain't fun, lemme tell you." He falls silent for a moment, ruminating, then: "The party wasn't bad, I guess. Jus' not for th' likes of yours truly."

"Keroon?" Nathanael cocks his head sideways with a PONDERING glance at that flask. Really, he cannot be that innocent can he? Except, he continues to make no comment on the slow devolution of his speech into something more akin to Nathanael's choppy speak. "Why'd ye' be lookin' f'r a white fluff 'n 'e white?" He settles his back against the wall, feeling the faint coolness of the stone on skin. "What kinda party be what ye're lookin' f'r?"

"Keroon. Where I'm from. Up North," Quentin clarifies, just in case Nathanael isn't certain exactly where Keroon is. Sip from the flask, and another deep breath. Yes, he's treading dangerous ground, but it seems he doesn't care so much right now. Apparently the party not being what he expected disappointed him more than he's willing to let on. "Ovines. They're… ovines. Where we get wool from. Stupid li'l creatures wi' black faces an' fluffy white wool all over them bodies. An' they like t' get lost in stupid places, like ravines and holes an' snow drifts." He snorts quietly at the last question. "Dunno. I guess one with laughter an' loud music and people doin' more than shakin' their asses and tits at each other."

"Aint people as stuffy 'ere as they 're back north." Nathanael eyes that flask, and finally reaches out a hand, with a slight finger wiggle. Can he try it now? "Lot've'em 're real re-press-ed, 'n so if'n there be a way t' be lettin' go? Well…" Nathanael shrugs again.

"Not everyone is stuffy up North," Quentin objects, albeit a bit feebily. As Nate crooks his finger, he takes a quick swig from the flask, then passes it over to the other Candidate. As expected, there's whiskey in it. What might be unexpected is that it's whiskey cut with fruit punch. The boy might be daring enough to skirt the line of the rules, but he's not stupid enough to risk the consequences of unadulturated liquor on the uninitaited. He might be tipsy - but he's not drunk. "Most are, though," he grudgingly conceeds.

A brief chuckle from Nathanael as he lifts up that flask to his lips. He can smell the whiskey, but quirks an eyebrow up at the other smell. To his lips he lifts it, and a drink is taken. Not nearly the pulls which the other teen has taken. Then he hands it back. "Southern ain't like no other place 'n 'e world."

"I'll drink to that." And everything else. But Quentin lifts the flask with a nod to Nathanael, then takes a long pull. After a moment of thought, he caps the flask and tucks it off to the side, still a quarter full - but he's had enough. For now. "So. Got any favorite eggs?" That's quite a change in conversation.

It is probably good that the flask isn't offered back to Nathanael, he has been sheltered, and it wouldn't take much to shove his small frame over the edge into a state candidates are not allowed to be in. At the egg question, Nathanael leans forward. "Ye see that'un, what's lookin' t' be white? If'n ye circle'round, ye'll see red. Almost like 's bleedin'. Made me t' be thinkin'. How 'bout ye?"

"That shiny one," and Quentin motions. Of course, at this distance, his gesture includes half a dozen eggs, but he expands on his description with: "Kinda like a rainbow, only not. With just a little red." It really isn't easy to describe some of these eggs. "I touched it out there, when we was, well… touchin' them. At first, it was kinda gory. But then…" He trails off, eyes shining just a little. "Felt so… peaceful."

Nathanael leans forward, though he is careful enough to make sure that the teacup gold upon the sands doesn't have a chance to see him. "Some'un described'em t' me like what we was seein' was 'e babies' dreams. I ain't sure if'n I be agreein' with that." See, deep down the simple seacrafter is a philosopher. "I be thinkin' they're just showin' us. Like we ain't able t' be seein' proper."

To be fair, most sea-workers are probably philosophers - much like shepherds. What else is there to do when you're stuck on the sea or in a field with a bunch of stupid ovines? Quentin studies the other Candidate with a slightly skeptical air. "Maybe." However, the mystery tugs at the boy and he sinks into thought - then: "Seems t' me that a lot o' what I saw was too… complicated? for a creature what hasn't even been born yet. Maybe it was all our mind's inter- inper- inter-pre-tation from whatever th' babe was feelin'?"

A smile spreads across Nathanael's lipa as he relaxes into the stone and allows his eyes to close. For all the ice of the North has been lovely, there is something about the heat and humidity of Southern that Nathanael loves also. "That be 'zactly what I was thinkin'. Ye want t' be gettin' out t' be touchin'em again?"

"A'course," Quentin replies, almost scoffing - though there's a faint chuckle in his voice as he leans back into his rocky backrest and tilts his head back, staring at the toothy ceiling of the cave. "I ain't touched near as many as I'd like to. Some o' the boys say touchin' 'em might make 'em want to Impress you. Can't see how that is, though - I mean, you got Candidates touchin' 'em left and right, but no one's ever Impressed more'n one dragon, and plenty get left standing e'ery time."

"I know they be gettin' real protective after we be touchin' 'em." Nathanael's hand brushes against the ground, and a pebble finds his fingers. He throws it upwards, and catches it. Again and again he does this, pondering. "But mayhap ye're right. Ye like Southern, other than not likin' how 'e adults 're doin a party?"

"Adults." Quentin snorts, but doesn't elaborate on that single, scathing word. His head rolls against the rock, and his eyes inevitably find the Sands and the eggs, watching, pondering. "Whatcha mean, protective? And yeah, I like Southern. It's a good place. I kin see why my father likes it here."

You say, "Mayhap 's no' as easy t' be spottin' 'ere 'n 'e weyr." Up and down that stone falls, as Nathanael shifts it from hand to hand before him. The eggs lay beyond his vision, but it is not where he focuses for the moment. "But 's real easy up at 'e hold. Candidates ain't ne'er left alone. Renalde, a rider 'r one've his people always be watchin'.""

Quentin muses quietly on Nathanael's words, still watching the eggs, one hand idly stroking the side of that small, silver flask. "Mayhap they jus' don't want us hurt. S'lot easier to get lost or hurt in a Hold as is under construction, like that one is, then in a Weyr where most o' the work is done. I mean, we was all Searched for a reason - s'not like they just picked our names outta a hat. Gotta protect their investment an' all that." He falls silent a second, then, softly, "An' maybe the boys are right. But I heard o' Candidates bein' kicked out before…"

Nathanael catches the stone in his hand, and rather than throwing it up again he lets it drop to the ground with a faint clack of stone on stone. Upwards he rises, and casts one last glance out at the sands. "I dunno. Ma'am Bailey's one what ain't gettin' things like this wrong. So I supose I'll jus' be trustin' what'er she be sayin'."

"Never had no reason not t' trust a dragonrider's word," Quentin says quietly - not so small praise for someone with his experience with dragonriders. He doesn't rise with the other Candidate, but he does turn his head to study Nate. "All I know is if I kin help it, I'll be standin' out there come Hatching Day with you an' Linden and the rest."

Faint smile there. "I can't be seein' any've us what ain't gonna be on them sands. Like ye was sayin', 'e riders was choosin' us f'r a reason?" Even if Nathanael is FAIRLY sure that reason was to get him back to Southern because <3 <3 <3. "Be sleepin' well Quentin. Mayhap We can be workin' t'gether at 'e hold soon."

"Don't see why it won't happen." After all, they'll all be there soon enough. Quentin sends a faint smile Nathanael-wards and lifts one hand to touch his fingers to his forehead in a salute. "Sleep well, Nate. I'll see you when I see you."

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