Who

Hannah, Rhiex

What

Hannah comes across a puppy… and a guard.

When

It is the seventy-third day of Spring and 86 degrees. It is a bright, sunny day.

Where

Leadership Courtyard, Southern Weyr

OOC Date

 

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Leadership Courtyard, Southern Weyr

Nigh palatial, this gorgeous sweep of cultivated bowl: a courtyard proper, a fountain bubbles in the middle of a grove of orange-trees, next to a stone bench that has weathered many a turn. Rare metal stands out at the sweep of steps upwards to the landings of queens'-weyrs and other administrative personnel; handrails to prevent… mishaps, and sparse doors of spiraled cast-iron to lock out any vagrants.


Twelve days since the birth of her son and today is the first day she's been able to get *real* time spent by herself. It's a spare moment, sliced between feedings and all those other newborn baby things, but it's a moment taken for *herself* and that's special. As Rukbat sinks below the mountain peeks and the sky slowly darkens with oncoming dusk, the goldrider sees fit to enjoy herself by the grove of citrus trees, perched on a bench. Dressed in a white, emprie-waisted dress with her pale hair swinging free like moonlight, she is more a creature of night than day. With her head tilted up towards the sky, a deep breath is inhaled and then slowly exhaled. Ahhh, it feels good to have a moment.

There is a HILARIOUSLY GOOFY LOOKING PUPPY rambling towards Hannah with the huge-pawed klutziness that only big-breed puppies can get. He is GOING, too, fast as crap with his tongue lolling out of his mouth. He has one ear that hasn't decided if it is going to stand up like the other one or stay flopped over, and it jounces around with the velocity of his pace. There has never been a happier dog in the history of happy dogs… nor a more shocked owner, caught so by surprise that his call of, "Tank! TANK!" falls belated and on unhearing ears. (They are too busy flopping in his HAPPY GALLOPING BEELINE towards HANNAH.)

Most normal people would see the happiest puppy in the world and smile and hold their hands out for puppy kisses. Hannah sees bounding teeth and flapping jowls of disembowlment and pain. Or, maybe she's just startled because that puppy beelining towards her has her giving a startled shriek. Never has the weyr seen the goldrider move as quickly as she does not, humping up on that bench and holding the hem of her pale dress up to show bare feet and slender ankles. "Tank?! Tank!" Hey, maybe she echoes!

OH JOY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!11111111111111111!!!!!!!!!!111111111111one!!!!!!!!!!! HANNAH WANTS TO PLAY!? SHE JUST RAN! Tank's tongue lolls around again, and the pup doesn't skid to a stop but LEAPS up on the bench too, tail wagging with the frenzy of only a young canine. Tank, bless his heart, stops to sniff those bare feet, treating her toes to a lot of drool LAP-LAP-LAP and then snuffs upwards with those soulful eyes and half-flopped ear and wagging ass. When Hannah says his name the second time, as a directive, the pup's entire demeanor shifts: both ears PRICK FORWARD and his ass hits the bench in a perfect sit, though one can tell just by looking at him that anticipation thrums through him, waiting for a command.

And somewhere not too far away, Rhiex facepalms.

"Oh… ew." Hannah cannot help that comment that spills out when the canine's warm tongue laps at her TOES. Which wiggle in protestation and abject misery. DOG SLOBBER. She inches away from the dog when he SITS right there on the bench. "Um." Looking around, nervous fingers tuck her hair behind her ears as the goldrider searches for his OWNER. "Where did you come from?" Inch, inch. "Sit? No you're already sitting. Lay down." Because that's what you tell dogs to do, right? Right. By now, the goldrider is perched on the very edge of the bench, toes curling over the squared edges with the shifting weight of one who does not know what to do when it comes to a dog.

There is no intensity quite like the intensity of a young guardbreed puppy. His eyes faithfully never leave Hannah's face, and when he bounds downwards it feels more like a crouch than actually laying down, because there is harnessed energy and the readiness to fling himself off the bench or do whatever command is next issued. Those eyes shine upwards. WHAT NOW?! YOU PLAY A GOOD GAME. Rhiex takes his time, the rat bastard, walking up in a way that leaves Hannah's back to him.

Hannah is oblivious to the creeping Rhiex, her back left completely unguarded as her entire attention is focused on the puppy that's not occupying most of her bench. "Um." The corner of her lip is bitten and for one second, she turns to eye the entrance to her weyr and calculating how quickly she might be able to make it to the stairs that lead up to her ledge. But the puppy isn't doing anything scary. Just… intense staring. And waiting. "Good doggie." Hey, she'll chance leaning over to LIGHTLY touch her fingers to the nearest bit of fur and pray that she doesn't become a scooby snack.

THAT is enough to have the puppy sitting up, sitting pretty, panting happily and thrusting his head under her hand. PET ME LIKE DIS. NO. LIKE DIS. RIGHT DERE. YES. DERE. COME OOOOOOOOONNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN happypant happypant happypant. Rhiex's soft laughter can now probably be heard.

Great Faranth, Hannah's created a monster. The dog's happiness is slowly putting the goldrider at ease and setting to rest her fear of becoming his snack. Rhiex's soft laughter causes her to startle and twirl on the balls of her feet in his direction. "I presume," her husky voice is both startled and amused, "that this creature is yours?" Creature is said in an almost touching way. "He's — he is a he, right? — is very pretty." Fingers dig a little more into the fur, feeling the warmth trapped at the base of the hairs where they press to the animal's skin.

Of course, it's at Hannah's startlement that cause Tank to BOUND off the bench, sailing through the air to land solidly in front of her, squared up and ferocious with a growling bark that sounds MUCH deeper than one would expect from the gawky pup. No matter that it's Rhiex. ROOF. ROOF WOOF ROOF WOOF. YOU STAY AWAY FROM MY DESIGNATED PETTER, YOU KNAVE. Rhiex makes a sound of exasperation and solidly states in the sternest of voices, "Tank." The dog stops barking and suddenly starts wagging. Rhiex… shakes his head. "I'm very sorry, goldrider. I hope he did not trouble you overmuch."

The sudden change in the dog's demeanor has Hannah wringing her hands again and nibbling her lip, but since Tank seems to be angling those teeth away from her to Rhiex, she eventually relaxes. "It's all right," slowly, she slips off the bench from where she'd been admittedly cowering, and leans over to gently pet the canine. "He's a protective thing isn't he?" She angles the question towards the guard, turning emerald green eyes to the tall guard. Her eyes narrow slightly, contemplatively. "You look familiar."

"He is." Tank lopes to Rhiex at his owner's call, and the guardsman gives his pup a rub of the ears momentarily before Tank presents himself promptly to Hannah. LET THE PETTIN'S COMMENCE. "The only reason I even bother with him," lightly, jokingly stated. Rhiex allows his eyes to linger on Hannah for a long moment, thoughtful. "I think we have met before," he finally states, his voice thoughtful.

"It is like the memory of a dream," Hannah comments, because that's what happens when good scenes die. She laughs lightly when Tank presents himself to her once more for even MORE attention. "He's also very demanding." Straightening up again, she tilts her head back (all the Southern men are tall), and considers him for a long moment. "A guard, eh? New to Southern? Maybe I should get a guard puppy too." Pause. "For some reason, my first thought was you were from somewhere else. How silly of me." It's like the world has suddenly gone into the twilight zone or something. Or deja vu.

And have some scenes DIED with this pair in them. Obviously Tank is the star of this show. He's what's keeping everything going from backsliding into the greyscale slumbering bewilderment of deja vu. "He is," in regards to the puppy's demanding nature. "New to Southern, yes ma'am." Rhiex is so painfully perfect in the execution of his mannerly responses, raising simple sentences to art rendered in brevity. "I am from the oldtime, if that is perhaps what you mean."

Tank is the energy between them, bonding this scene to the living. OBVIOUSLY. Hannah regards Rhiex, eyebrows lifting upwards at his final statement. "I am from old-oldtime." That's right, it might sound like a one-uppance, but it's simply the truth. "But this guy is from now isn't he?" Rhiex's charisma only lasts as long as it takes for Tank to get her attention. "Just look at his sweet face." Though still skittish, Hannah is warming up slowly to the dog, while keeping the man in view of the corner of her eye. "I think we're all from here now, eh? At least that's what I've been working on telling myself." She pauses, "But no, beyond that. You look familiar. Do you have a twin?"

PFFFFFFFFFT. Tank is the SUPERSTAR. He wags his tail heavily and shamelessly leans up against Hannah, panting so very happily. LOOK. LIKE DIS. NO, DIS EAR. NOT DAT ONE. DIS ONE. RIGHT — THEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1 Watch out, he will totally fall over in his pursuit of showing Hannah just how much he adores her. (And her skritchings.) "I would agree with that conclusion, ma'am," Rhiex replies politely inasfar as all-being-from-here-now. "Me? No, ma'am, no twin." He lifts his hand to scruff absently at the back of his neck. "A brother, but no twin."

Without the girth of pregnant belly, Hannah's center of balance has returned but she's still a tiny woman and not real statue of immobility. So when Tank leans into her, falling over her scratches, Hannah laughs softly even as she stumbles back. "A brother?" What is it with this man that his companion is much more beloved than the man himself. Why it reminds her of — "K'ane's brother?" Because let's face it. Those dots just connect.

Tank loves it. He's going to wag his tail straight off at this rate, but it doesn't seem any way close to being done. NOT AT ALL. He's like the energizer bunny but in a CANINE package. More fur, less… drums? "Rik.. K'ane, yes. Dhioth's," politely replies Rhiex. "He's in High Reaches, at the moment." At least he keeps tabs on that jugheaded idiot. Someone should, that isn't intrinsically bound to his consciousness.

"Dhioth." Because Hannah is more enamored with the dragon than with his rider. "He is a fine dragon, that one." It has nothing to do at all with the glimmer of her own lifemate in the light and dark of Dhioth's hide. "K'ane is in High Reaches?" This query is given with the draw of brows and a considering stare, but that lasts only so long with the puppy gaining her attention again. "Aren't joo jus' so cuuuuuutes," she mutters to the puppy, scratching around his jaw.

TANK: the great canine converter. He wriggles all over in his effusive joy at the BABYTALK. Oh man she is SPEAKING HIS LANGUAGE. His happy-panting face is so very easily translated: DIS. DIS. I LOVE DIS. I LOVE JOO. I LOVE JOOR PETTINS. Rhiex, meanwhile, shakes his head with a bit of amusement. "I suppose you would know better than I would," he politely returns in regards to Dhioth, and nods, briefly. "They won a gold flight, and now are tasked to the Sands. He says it is… very different."

Hannah is drowning in the effervesce of the love exuding from the canine, scratching vigorously exactly where it will be enjoyed the moment. Slowly, she straightens, frowning. It's not to Rhiex that she turns her eyes, though, but to the weyr itself. A glimmer of a thought is born of a seed that Rhiex has inadvertently planted, and by the tension that's come to her expression, it's not a good thought. "I'll just bet it's different. I bet it was an easy win, too." Which could be a compliment, or the half-born expression of a thought arrested. To hide her expression — and what he glimpses might be worry — she turns back to tank. "You are a very proper sort. May I ask your name? I am Hannah."

"I was raised to be proper," Rhiex returns, the curl of his lips definite, "So I will certainly take that as a compliment, thank you, ma'am." He rocks back on his heels and issues a short, crisp whistle. Tank pricks his hears, licks Hannah's hand once, and romps to his owner with the loose-limbed gaiety of a pup. Rhiex reaches down, ruffs at the pup's nose. "Guard Rhiex at your service, miss Hannah. Though, I regret to say, my duty-shift is calling." Apology is writ across the lines of his face.

"It is a compliment, Rhiex. It's an old skill, lost to so many turns as to be more myth than…" Hannah's thought trails off. She looks a touch bereft with the removal of Tank, but she clasps her hands together and glances to her weyr. "Please, please. I've got to get back myself. Be safe, Rhiex, and have a good evening." Day, work. For the puppy there's nothing but a soft smile and warm expression before she takes her skirt in hand and slowly slips away, expression troubled. By the time she reaches her weyr, however, whatever had troubled her is gone as her thoughts turn to her small family.

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