Who

Hannah, K'ane, Prymelia, Dione, Arlemond, Niyati, Nevik

What

An exciting and somewhat perturbing discovery is made deep in the tunnels of the base camp up in the Ice Fields by a group of intrepid explorers.

When

It is sunrise of the seventh day of the eleventh month of the first turn of the 12th pass.

Where

Southern Weyr, Ice Fields: Base Camp

OOC Date

 

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Ice Fields: Base Camp

Here rises the dark-grey monolith of massive caverns, open-facing and airy. The arches, far above, make this space ill-equipped for centralized heating but excellent for campfires. The caves go deep, grey-walled caverns that tempt with enigmatic promise. Some are lofty as this main entrance; some are cozy enough for a tall man to bump his head. They all lie in nascent mystery, ripe and ready for the claiming by those strong enough to hold them.


Here, there are fires, people huffing in the cold, and all the signs of Progress: heavy wooden beams lay in massive stacks, fresh-cut and cured from the plentitude of trees in Southern's jungle forests; a forge has been set up right in the middle of things, giving off precious heat; neat stacks of dry goods parceled against the far wall. In the middle of it all is K'ane, wearing a HUGE FLUFFY PURPLE SWEATER on account of the cold, his riding jacket slung unused over one shoulder. He looks terribly amused by the industry of everyone around him — or maybe bemused, a furrow to his brow as he squints in slight incomprehension to the buzz of activity. There are wildlings EVERYWHERE.

Wildlings, wildlings, everywhere and just when Prymelia thought she’d escaped their uncivilized selves. That however, is the least of the trader’s problems. Cold she’d expected. Freezing her ass off to the point of being pretty sure her toes no longer exist. Not so much. Clearly her colorful garb and thick shawl are no match for the freezing climes. And yet it’s not enough to quell the young woman’s adventurous spirit. She who has come to a halt right in the flow of traffic to stare wide-eyed at all the goings on going positively bug-eyed when the purple behemoth is sighted and recognition dawns. It can’t be helped; it’s a visceral response when a snicker becomes a laugh choked down and poorly smothered by the swift clamp of hand to mouth.

There's probably a law in the heavens somewhere that states that Prym will never fully escape from them. Maybe she'll end up in a domestic relationship with Maosa. (STRANGER THINGS.) "Prymelia," K'ane's voice rumbles forth, one eyebrow Slowly Raising. "Y'look cold." He extends out his flight jacket wordlessly: it's thick leather, scarred and battered and scuffed, and looks impossibly warm. Well. Maybe not as impossibly warm as his purple sweater, but… "Or are y'laughin' at somethin', and it ain't just your teeth rattlin' together?" The other eyebrow joins its fellow.

Stranger things indeed! So intent on not looking directly at the Purple People Eater while trying to contain those betraying ripples of amusement, Prymelia almost jumps a foot high when he directly addresses her. Cold? Her? Nope. She’s trying out for a role as a Pernese Smurf aka Smurfelia. Which clearly she’s failing at given the jacket being offered. Out goes a hand to receive it, hesitating at the hike of that other eyebrow. “Purple’s a wonderful color.” The trader will tell K’ane with the utmost of sincerity if one disregards the mirth dancing in hazel eyes. “Very…” hiccough-giggle, “becoming. You should wear it more often it really…” her voice waivers as mirth attempts to win the battle for control, “brings out the color of your eyes.” And just in case the bronzerider decides to change his mind about the offer of his jacket, she’ll try to make a grab for it.

"Whatever," K'ane replies, completely unruffled. "Everyone an' their mother laughs at me for this damn sweater, but it's fuckin' warm, aye? I don't see you walkin' around with somethin' warm enough to save y' from this cold." This is also the man who will run in summer clothes in the middle of winter, so it MAY NOT generalize, but. He'll certainly argue the point. "For shame, laughin' at a man while takin' advantage of his chivalry." There's a relaxed cant to his smile, though, terribly amused. "So y'thinkin' about takin' the plunge?" He gestures with his chin back towards the tunnels that lead into the cave-system proper.

High mirth settles to something closer to warm amusement as Prymelia shrugs into the jacket, immediately drowned by its size. “If it helps any, I do think it suits you.” Says she the mobile rainbow of color garbed as she is in peacock hues with splashes of amber thrown in for good measure. “Me? Move up here?” The laugh this time is directed at herself. “Renalde is getting on a bit but I don’t think he’s quite lost his marbles enough to lump this lot with the likes of me.” Cue the impish grin. “Would be nice though,” she goes on to say following K’ane’s gaze toward the tunnels, “to enjoy a crackling fire at night. It never really gets cold enough in Southern to do so.”

"Well. Thank you. I think." K'ane cuts his eyes at Prym once as if to gauge her sincerity, then lapses into silence for a moment. "Well. C'mon. Wanna go explore?" He waggles his eyebrows at her momentarily, then starts off peremptorily towards the nearest non-timber-reinforced cave entrance — it's smaller than the others and looks as if nobody has trod into it, yet. "That's your decision," he calls over his shoulder, "Not Renalde's! Though Lord Renalde does have a curious ring t' it," he acknowledges aloud as he grabs one of the honest-to-god pitch-soaked torches. What? The wildlings don't need no damn GLOWS.

“Was Faranth’s arse gold?” Prymelia immediately quips back on explorations and pulling the jacket closer about her, heads off after K’ane uttering a soft snort for the idea of giving the Headman title. “Lord of the Ice Fields.” The title pondered aloud. “You know,” stepping around a pile of wood set neatly to one side, “I think he may have been born to it.” She’ll leave K’ane to take care of the lighting but be sure to follow closely behind him. At least she does have boots on even if they are a little more suited to a hoedown in Tillek.

"Y'know, I don't rightly reckon I have an answer for that one," K'ane responds, wholly too-thoughtful on the topic of Faranth's ass. "Renalde? Born t' be a Lord Holder? Ha. A steward, maybe. Lord Holders ain't ever that… particular." He shakes his head with a smirk and moves into the darkness with his lighted torch, humming under his breath. "It's crazy t'think all th' places in Southern that we could stuff people." That doesn't sound like he's talking about dead bodies at all, right? Right?

“Gold. It was gold.” Is the mutter given under her breath when K’ane actually appears to give her question thought. A chuckle bounces off the walls adorned with the flickering glow of torchlight as they pick their way further in. “I meant in so far as his bearing more than his bloodline or ability to do so.” But then perhaps the bronzerider hasn’t had the fortune of experiencing the field of ice that can be Renalde at times. Dead bodies? That’s what Between is for. Ahem. “But why here? Did they strike a vein of gold nearby or something?” Too sardonically spoken to suggest Prymelia might actually believe such a thing. “Hey, if we find any treasure in here, I’m willing to negotiate a seventy-forty split.” Just saying.

"Was it?" K'ane's grin is a little jaundiced, more baiting. "Hmm. Aye, I suppose I could see that. Somethin' about th' way he holds himself." He shrugs broad shoulders. "I dunno. All th' Lords I've ever had th' misfortune of meetin' have always been asshats." Including the ones he is distantly related to, but that's neither here nor there. "Here? 'Cause Thread doesn't fall in this godforsaken cold," K'ane replies. "So y'know… it's a tradeoff. No thread, but y'have t' live with this freezin' your…" He pauses. "Is it just me, or is it a little warmer in here?" He ignores any discussion of splits, since OBVIOUSLY he would just take it all. Neener.

What is this fluffy thing that finally pushes into the chilly Base Camp? It's short and round and has ermine fur lining the sweet shape of her face with tufts of pale, liquid-moonlight hair dancing in the chilly spring winds. Her body is encased in the thickest of cold attire, edged in soft fur with thick boots to protect her feet. "K'ane," muffled is the husky voice upon her arrival and spying first K'ane, then Prymelia. "Prymelia." It's a welcome seen from the dark depths of cold's combatant attire, and yet somehow her steps are still light. "I finally made it." Even if Hannah clearly looks allergic to the cold.

Regular enterprise labors forth in the main base camp — standard enough, buzzing with reinforcing the main caverns with timbers. Down one PARTICULAR tunnel, not-yet-explored, are a purple-sweater-clad bronzerider and a flight-jacket-wearing trader, with a freaking pitch torch. Dhioth's caught on to something a bit faster than his rider, and as the ripples extend on from him to the dragons of Southern, riders and rider-informed personnel come curiously down the tunnel to see what in Faranth's name the two are about to stumble upon.

“Aren’t they all?” Prymelia tosses back now sounding a little unsure on the matter of gold butts. “Never met a Lord,” she goes on to say almost stumbling into the back of K’ane when she trips over a rock. “But Renalde’s nice under all that frostbite. I like him. You know where you stand with him, you know?” Pausing when he does, the trader shoves an overlong sleeve up to test the air with her ungloved hand. “I don’t know about warmer, probably just starting to lose the feel of our extremities from the cold.” She opines far more cheerfully than one should if this were to be the case. Splits are left in the dirt for clearly K’ane has never tried to come between Prymelia and a shiny bauble. There is a very definite squeak of surprise from the trader when Hannah suddenly speaks up from behind them. “Dear Faranth! I thought there was a ghost!” Don’t laugh. Ghosts exist. She’s met one. Just as well K’ane is holding the torch or else Hannah might have be in danger of going up in flames.

Niyati is just one of those people who are always the first to volunteer when something novel and adventurous is about to happen. She may or may not be hoping yet to see a large white feline before asking it to be turned into a fur. She has shed her normal warm weather wear for head to toe fur and hide- all fashionably done, mind- and waves as she catches sight (partial or otherwise) of familiar faces.

Arlemond trudges up the tunner, head lifting as he nears, stopping in his tracks. He closes his eyes and turns his head this way and that, testing the air for himself, mine-trained senses (long unused) unfurling. "If it is warmer, the ice here could be very unstable." He ducks his head to the weyrwoman, "Ma'am. Trader." He peers at K'ane, "Rider. Journeyman." A long pause… "Apprentice." Now that the roll's been called…

"Have y'seen some golds? They aren't all Aevryscienths." That may make zero sense to Prym, but it makes plenty of sense to K'ane. Though there IS an Aevryscienth teaching-song out there, courtesy of a few dumbass nowtimers… Damn time travel destiny crap. K'ane turns befuddled gaze over his shoulder at the influx of people, "Do they know somethin' we don't?" he questions Prym, nudging closer to her and grinning welcome at Hannah, lofting his torch higher to peer at Arlemond and Niyati. "Is there a party?" he jokes, turning to lean against one of the closer walls to get a better look at everything going on. Then — well, Arlemond's words must be, like, magic, because he FALLS THROUGH THE FREAKIN' WALL. One minute there's a big bronzerider wrapped up in a fuzzy purple sweater, and the next there's a distant splash and a hole in the ice-wall that suddenly radiates heat outward. Whups. He had the torch. Guess they are all IN THE DARK, unless some enterprising soul brought glows…

That enterprising and safety-minded soul would be Arlemond. Safety first. The splash is noted and Arlemond calls out calmly, "Rider, are you okay? Keep talking until we can see you?" This as the Smith drops to a knee to unshoulder his pack and fish out not one, but two glowlamps. The first flares into life and reveals the gaping hole that K'ane had fallen through and the bewildered forms of others. "Here," he isn't looking as he holds out the first glowlamp. Whoever grabs it gets to have the light.

"Party?" Hannah shakes her head, pushing the ermine-edged hood back away from her face. "I just managed to convince Th'seus that I was definitely okay to be up here. Dhioth let me know he was up here." Such affection for that bronze! It shows in the warmth of voice that comes from fluffy-bundled up Hannah. Turning on Prymelia, a smile is beginning to form, words coming out right as Arlemond and Niyati are emerging from the darkness as well, "I might be a ghost yet— " But her thoughts are cut off when K'ane falls through the wall. Gloved hands come up to press against her mouth, emerald eyes wide and glinting wet as K'ane and torch disappear. Darkness envelopes. A husky whisper drifts from Hannah, rough in the unseeing. "K'ane?" Sharp flare of worry echoes. Good thing a Smith is here! Hannah's attention turns from the hole, to Arlemond, who also has the glows.

What are the odds that -just- when a wall caves in that Nevik, the walking disaster, would just -happen- to be present. As soon as the wall collapses a strained voice can be heard in the sudden darkness left by the extinguished torch, "Didn't do it!" followed by another call of, "Anyone hurt?"

Aevryscien-what-nows? Mayhap the gap of silence and the double blink says it all. It makes NO sense to Prymelia whatsoever. She must have missed her lessons the day the song was taught. No surprise there. “Who? The ghosts?” Because that makes sense to her. “My grams says the ghosts no everything!” Don’t knock trader superstition. And now its become an exploration party, Prymelia’s grin turning wider as each additional face is lit by the torchlight. Smacked right off when K’ane goes through the wall. “Crap!! K’ane!!??” The fallen torch retrieved by Arlemond is grabbed at and the trader inches forward a little. “There better not be treasure down there!” She hollers into the hole. She does care about the rider’s wellbeing. Really she does. But…treasure!

Niyati stage whispers in Nevik's direction. "That rider fell- who wears that shade of purple these days, anyway?- and there was a bit of a splash. I wonder if that was him hitting the water or him splashing…." The latter is mused to herself before she attempts to adjust to the change in light levels. "Oh don't be silly, of course you didn't do it. The ice did. It just happened when you came in, that's all. Shouldn't we mount some sort of rescue? We can put Nevik down the hole!"

Arlemond is definitely a good boyscout to have around, no DOUBT. K'ane's splashy flailing can be heard all the way up — he definitely fell *down* after the wall collapsed around him — and a half-gasped, "It's fuckin' HOT, Faranth, did I fall through t'Ista?" And then only panting. What? People are asking about him? He's busy groping around in the dark. And then: "I'm keepin' it ALL, y'heartless trader!" He heard that, apparently. Then, with a calmer voice, "I'm fine, Hannah. I think I've fallen into a… hot spring?" His voice is a little hesitant. "I can't see a blasted thing."

It's not that Dione particularly likes the cold, mind, but the very way that everyone talked about the ice fields and the possible hold so much that her curiosity lured her here. Dressed very warmly - she's gotten used to hot weather - she makes her way into the tunnels behind everyone; though her brows arch as someone falls, she's too far back to provide help. Then, after a measured pause. "Hot spring?" she murmurs to the woman beside her, relaying the news. "…baths?"

"Ista?" Hannah's exclamation comes bursting free like a bubble of thought uncontained. "Not really? Really?" Now the short goldrider is picking her way closer — because when does she ever not? — and looks around to those who have light. "A hot spring? So you're telling me that you're swimming around down there?" Curiosity has always been Hannah's downfall, and now this draws the attention more than anything else. "Now, now. If anyone's getting treasure, it'll be the weyr." A bunch of merry treasure hunters they all are, here. The junior glances back to Nevik when he proclaims his innocence — well his voice. Until someone produces some light. Her expression of utter and pure glee is probably masked and only the boot-crunch of steps betray her 'I'm getting closer' intentions. "Journeyman," that to Arlemond, "You have a light to shine down in there?" Dione and Niyati's voices are heard, but the hole is too tempting by half.

“I KNEW it!” Prymelia huffs louder than she’d meant to on the matter of treasure. Oops, sorry K’ane. Arlemond is now set with an intent look. “You can get him out of there right?” Hannah is next to catch the trader’s eye. “Can he swim? That sweater of his looked really thick and heavy.” And a drowned assistant weyrlingmaster wouldn’t go down very well. Besides, there is at least some loyalty toward the man that had given her his jacket to wear. “Oh. I have some glows in my pocket.” She declares, fishes about in her skirts, or maybe under them, ahem, and comes up with three glows clutched in her hand. “Here catch!” Is all the warning K’ane will get before she sends them sailing out into the black abyss. Those should maaaybe have gone to Arlemond. Oh well.

"Unconfirmed." The wounded. Arlemond's gravelly baritone is calm and steady, listening as much as looking, for signs of K'ane. At the rider's call he nods. That second glow is getting a rope tied to it, in case it needs to be lowered. Dark eyes flick from the weyrwoman to the trader lass and talks of ghosts. If anyone were looking closely, they'd see a nearly imperceptible shake of his head and a slight quirk of a disbelieving smile at the corner of his mouth. Young women and their fancies. He actually smiles at Niyati's fair accounting of the events thusfar. "We're not putting anyone else in that hole." Yet. He lurches to his feet, rope affixed to a second glow. Did anyone take the first one? A nod to Dione as she enters, brows quirk in canine fashion as Arlemond peers at the hole, "And a good thing or that Rider'd be in a world of pain." Speaking of which… Arlemond moves up with the others showing the glow to Hannah and nodding to the trader. "We all will." to the hole and begins to lower the rope-tethered glow. It'll help him find wherever those glows Prymelia just threw went.

Niyati edges her way to the hole, unable to contain her curiosity any longer. Once she's close enough to do so she leans so that her voice can carry into the chamber below. "You may want to strip down. Those clothes are going to drag you down eventually and if they drag you out in them your pants will be frozen to your buttocks." Just in case ANYONE was wondering. "Imagine what that would do to your…" Oh look, there's Prymelia! And she has glows. "Good thinking!" She pulls a face at Arlemond once his back is to her, even going so far as to stick out her tongue but then she's all curiosity again. "He landed in water, maybe there's an edge to the pool or something. Oh, I wonder if there'll be fish?! Big, white, blind fish." There's your mental image. You're welcome.

Dione isn't sure which picture is more horrifically amusing, frozen dingdong or gigantic blind fish. Finding a little empty spot, she tries to peer down the hole too, eyeing the faint light of the glows as they go down-down-down. "I wonder how good your aim is," she wonders idly to Prymelia with a grin. "I've got some whiskey here. He can have that for, um, medicinal purposes." For the moment, as they look rather busy, Arlemond and Hannah aren't bothered; she does scoot out of Nevik's range though.

K'ane gets hit on the head with one of Prymelia's glows, because that's how his life always go. His "Crap!" is loud enough, but he manages to rescue the glow from the water. "Huh. This place…" There's a moment of silence, and as Arlemond lowers his glow there's a quick intake of breath to be heard from the rider stuck 'downstairs'. "It's huge." That's what she said. "I see… huh, try walkin' down the tunnel some more. I think it eventually curves back around t'… like a… beach thing. I'm headin' that way." There's clear sounds of someone swimming, and a muffled, "What th…" followed by a sudden splash. Then? Then there is only ominous silence. (But hey! It saves him from responding to Niyati's comment about FROZEN BUTT PANTS and shriveled… underwear.)

Nevik peers down the whole and, upon the sound of the splash and ominous silence, seems to fidget even more. Frantically attempting to see if there's a way down to the lower levels, he starts to circle the 'pit-like' opening. Wait. My bag! You can almost see the gears finally engage in the young healer's mind as he sluffs out of his backpack and digs into it a moment. The small lamp - no more than a handfull of glows - is what some would call a "Healer's light", just a small gathering of sleepy glows in a wooden case that, when opened, reveals a glass pane inside. The inside of the box's lid is mirrored to amplify the light a bit. Used primarily as a light source when you need to see what you're getting at for healers, it probably wouldn't provide much more lite than a body's length in any direction. However, when tied to his sling - he can lower it a bit to create at least a small bubble of light. Hopefully no one will walk towards it.

Yeah, yeah. Girl power. Prymelia's glows are 'good thinking' and old fuddy duddy Arlemond's wisdom get a tongue stuck out. If he'd not seen worse out of grown "responsible" men he'd roll his eyes. If he knew she was sticking out her tongue. Though… the former safety-inspector pretty much assumes he's followed by a wake of rolled eyes and exasperated huffs. No one, but no one, liked 'The Safety Guy.' And Hannah's disregard for safety was nigh-legendary. "I'll stay here and keep an eye on things until you lot get around the bend. Keep calling out as you go." He looks at Niyati and Dione, tossing a chin at Nevik, who's digging around in that pack of his. Keep an eye on him, says the look. Dark eyes look around the cavern revealed by the glow. He starts at K'ane's splashing and sudden silence, "Rider!" Arlemond rakes off his jacket before jumping into the waters feet first, loose, ready to absorb the shock of it being shallower than he can tell. Safety first, till shit gets real. Do as he says, not as he does. That's how that works, right?

K'ane's comment of going down the tunnel has Hannah scrambling like a snow elf and barrelling down the tunnel and around the bend. She's never been good at waiting — reckless to the end, even in newfound motherhood — and possibly, before she dives headlong into possible danger, she's grabbed one of Prymelia's glows. "Thank you, thank you," rushed, hurried. For all of those who follow Southern's reckless junior Weyrwoman (don't tell Lendai!), her bubble of light will bounce around, shattering light off the walls and just at the curve of the bend of the tunnel the glow's light will cascade off of something bleached white. As she nears where K'ane may even now be emerging, the purloined glow will further reveal something that might just have the skin crawling at the back of the neck. Pure white, aged; bones lie in tossed array. A thigh bone as tall as Arlemond. Ribcages that curl into shattered, broken ends. A skull that lies cast-aside at the back of the curve of the tunnel, where it falls into the sweltering hot pools of steaming water. Hot, cloying; the humidity tickles the hair at the back of the neck, and encourages sweat to drip at the temples. Just what did this merry band of explorers find? The ancient bones of a dragon? The ancient bones of a giant wherbeast? What is clear is that they are old, faded to the fossilized purity of pale ashen hue. And to them cling an essence of mystery.

Prymelia at least has the good grace to wince at that loud cuss from the downed bronzer, fully aware her not-so-magnificent glow tossing abilities are the cause thereof. But she’ll pretend otherwise and send Dione an impish grin. “Apparently I can hit a bronzer with my eyes shut. Aw crap!” There goes Arlemond after K’ane. “Now they’re both going to have frozen…butss. Hey!” That’s when Hannah goes hurtling passed and grabs a glow and the trader is off like a shot after the tiny goldrider. “Hannah! Hannah be careful! It could be slippery… Woah!” Arms flail as Prymelia comes to a screeching halt, eyes saucering as she takes in the enormous bones. “What the fuuuuck?”

"Well there's no need to brag. Ice humbles any man." Niyati pauses and understanding dawns on her face. "Oh, you meant the cavern." Then there goes Arlemond. "Someone tell me why he gets to tell us to be careful and then go off and have all the fun himself?" All of that is forgotten once Hannah makes her way down the tunnel. "Well, let's go!" Her words are directed at Nevik. "Stay close. If anything else exciting happens I want to be at the front of the line for it." That's right. If Nevik falls into a hole, she doesn't want to miss it. She's at least keeping a pace that can be kept up with, hard as it seems to be for her, and once the bones are spotted she lets out a near squeel. "Oh this is /incredible/! I bet this was /monsterous/ when it was alive! … too bad it's nothing but bones now."

Arlemond will find K'ane silent in awe of the damn pile of bones. "Oh hey," K'ane calls over, vaunting his glows higher to squint at the Smith. "Y'shoulda just gone 'round," he opines. "Look at that bitch." He chin-nods towards the bones. The cavern itself is HUGE, expansive, big enough for half the weyr to take a bath at once — entirely superfluous, but perhaps yielding interesting possibilities given how freaking cold it is outside. K'ane lofts something, though, other than the glows: it is, without a DOUBT, a human skull. "Found this on th' edge. Kinda creeped me out." He and Bob the Skull slog out of the water, dripping hot water as he goes up the soft incline. What he says about the humid cavern once he's out of the water? "Well hey, at least I can kinda-dry out all m'clothes before headin' out t' the damn cold." He's not even shivering. This place is AWESOME. A brownrider comes pelting around the curve with a face full of alarm, and K'ane allows himself to be pulled aside to be poked and prodded, his face full of suffered tolerance. He's FINE. Really. Even his purple people-eater sweater is fine! It just looks almost-black from being waterlogged. Nevertheless…

Nevik is silent. His curiosity has nearly stilled his mind. So many things to investigate. So many questions to ask. There's no way that he could ask them all or even have a clue where to start. The 'healer light', now held by the sling used to tie it, is held out like a spot-lantern allowing him and those nearby to at least see the contours of the ground so that they don't accidentally step into something or off of something.

As Niyati leads Nevik on, Dione will gingerly follow, just in case there are jars of numbweed to be accidentally squashed. Her pace through the tunnel is more unhurried, but when she emerges on the beach her eyes open wide, and amazement fills her expression. "This is … wow. Clearly things get that big, but…" Her voice trails off as she slowly pulls the first two layers of clothes off, face pink in the sudden heat, and carefully she tries to circle around the thing, try and get a measure of what size it must have been. Then, after a sight pause, "D'you think they got trapped in here somehow?"

"Call out! Keep talking!" Arlemond spalshes in a fury up to the bronzerider, "A simple instruction." Glowering. He grates his teeth, muttering about simple saftey protocols and impulsive riders. And nevermind that he'd just jumped into fathomless water without so much as a thought. Glares are shared about as the Smith steps to the side to remove and wring out his clothes as best he can. Inasmuchas decency allows. More fascinating than the bones to him is the space itself. Once he's over the shock of alarm and folk are milling around, peering at the bones and the cavern, he turns his mind to the space, eyes lit with the possibilites of so much room and heated water.

It will take a team of crafters to discover what's actually taken place here, but for now the bones of some beast and some ancient human reside on full display for those who have the light to see. And for now, it's not cordoned off against the crowd. Hannah is no less than the others, staring up at the find of bones in what can only be a display of awe and then slowly that crumbles into the brow-furrow of worry. She glances to the others, the rest of the party of discoverers and finally her eyes land on Arlemond. "We need to make sure it's safe," she murmurs before addressing the rest, "Just don't get too close." Who obeys, of course, will be hard to keep track of in the pockets of glow-light. Stepping off to the side, the goldrider unbuttons her coat and seems intent upon trying to decipher the human bones with her glow. Quiet and to the side for now.

hot springs in ice caves
bones of eons dead monsters
southern is weird yo

Edging around the pile of bones as widely as possible, Prymelia sneaks over to where K’ane had deposited the human skull and plucks the glow lodged in its eye socket. Gross!! The jacket loaned to her is then shrugged out of and handed back to its rightful owner and then, the usually garrulous trader, pulls off to one side, thoroughly unsettled by the bones of the dead and unnamed beast and man. Not even the splendor of the cave is able to soothe rattle superstitions.

'Safe.' The magic word. "Yes, of course, Ma'am," says Arleomond in his wet underpants. He makes a bow, hand to his belly and begins using -what else- spars of bone to make an impromptu fence around areas deemed unsafe and the skeleton. Skeletons. Rider and dragon? he wonders. Once the uprights are in place, the Smith slings a rope across the knobby and broken bone ends. It's not his best work, but it would do until there were more permanent measures in place. "A grand discovery, this. And probably why the ice was unstable down that other passage, eh, Nevik?" The whole place was gonna come down around their ears. And… eons in the future, six more sets of bones would be found here.

"Oh, I imagine it could have been anything. It's a water source, lots of animals get killed near water sources. Oh, human bones!" Niyati claps. "Well, now I'm not out on the having seen a human body." Her glee turns to thoughtfulness as she looks upward. "Hm… Maybe the person's a newer resident than that big thing. Wouldn't it be a horrible story if some rider and dragon were trapped down here ages and ages ago? Oh, you should have left it there. We could put some in each eye and let him look out onto the darkness again." Her voice is dramatically deepened and she raises her hands to wiggle her fingers. We should try to find this big thing's skull to see if it looks like anything." Perhaps she's a little too enthusiastic about the dead things, but she's not enthusiastic about Winter wear in the heat. Her outter layers of warm are shed in favor of cooler garments beneath. "Are you /really/ making a fence out of that thing's bones. Really?"

Nevik suddenly jerks back from trying to get close to the dragon skull. His movement and expression would remind any of a small child reaching for an undeserved bubbly pie. "Didn't do it," he responds almost reflexively and then ammends his statement with, "Yea?" he asks and turns to Arleomond curiously. Oh, a fence. He shouldn't be on the wrong side of it and starts to head out to stand beyond the rope-line created by the smith.

Dione, caught in the act of plinking a fingertip against one of the huge ribs, looks momentarily disturbed at the pirate skull trick, and turns back to view the immense monolith of bone supine in front of her. Indeed, she's just about to wander over to check out the skull when Arlemon starts building his fence, and for a moment she ponders exploring on in the dark patches. Grimacing, she wanders off, hands the man the biggest of her sweaters - at least he can make an apron out of it, and goes to soak her feet in the warm water. Mmmm. Better. "I bet we could throw a fabulous party in here. We'll have to get in a ton of glows though."

You better believe Arlemond is making a fence out of remains. NO BONES ABOUT IT. "It's the readiest construction material to hand." Simply stated, simply put. Arlemond is pragmatic. That work complete, Arlemond turns his gaze back to the cavern, mind spinning with the possibilies. If they didn't all die in a cave in caused by the intrusion of their tunneling on this centuries - millennia - old cave system.

"You're making a bone fence in your underwear," Niyati points out. "… and a sweater apron… This story is never going to get old." That said, she's all for having at the skeletons. At least until she turns a blinking, confused look at Nevik. "Now how could you /possibly/ be responsible for this? Unless you've been going back in time and stuffing unsuspecting people into caves or up chimeny flues. You don't strike me as the murderous type." She thinks it over and then shrugs. "Then again, the murderous type never really DOES seem murderous until they're caught."

In this, the smith Journeyman has things well in hand. Hannah's attention drifts back to the crowd as the goldrider meanders around the bones, eyeing them. "I think," she states this to no one specifically so everyone all at once, "that we could build ourselves a decent hot springs attraction in here. Possibly some stone benches, columns, sconces?" Arlemond, as the resident ranked crafter, can certainly attest to how difficult (or not), that would be. "Once the bones are removed. I don't think," and this is just a muttered aside, "we'll ever be done finding creepy things in this cursed place." Her nose wrinkles as the junior gives a troubled regard to the bones of beast and human. Smaller bones, animal bones, are also tangled up in the broken ribcages. The ancient remains of its last meal.

With her feet in the water, gently cooking, Dione gives a long, slow sigh of enjoyment. "That'd be nice. Perhaps not scones, but certainly other things, and juices and so on, the heat'll warm the stone up enough to catch a nap, and it'll be good for a winter getaway, right?" Scooting over to lean against the closest cavern wall, Dione returns to contemplation of her now-warm feet, wiggling her toes at herself.

“We should bury them before the hot springs are built.” Prymelia suddenly pipes up from where she’d wandered off to, freckled features grave. “Or maybe someone can take their bones Between. It doesn’t seem right to leave them here or just toss them out like yesterday’s garbage.” Her voice trails to a near whisper as she adds. “Someone, somewhere must have loved them once.” Partypooper Prymelia.

"After we figure out what this big fellow is," Niyati agrees. For now, she's going to walk amongst the bones singing something about fences and underwear (she'll have the song everywhere before long. "I suppose we'll need to organize glow deliveries, too…"

And so activity continues — more glows put up, the tunnel to the hot springs reinforced, the ice-wall knocked down to show a gorgeous panarama view of the darkened pools… and the gristly remains. Certainly there are more things to do and decisions to be made, but that cannot stop the thrum of gossip, tongues wagging with a thousand and one possibilities. So many things! Obviously it was a dragonrider set into the hot-springs for punishment. No, no, it's not a dragon at all, it's one of those unseen yetis. It's huge! No, but there's a human. Well… a yeti is half-human half-mammoth! No, it's a mammoth wher. What? No. The most outlandish rumor will be the best one, and keep on crispily frying in the pan of the weyr's chatter: the dragon is obviously Faranth. Prymelia said, after all. Didn't she?

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