Who

Ariele, F'kan

What

F'kan clears rocks. Ariele attempts to be… manipulative, or something like it.

When

It is morning of the twenty-second day of the twelfth month of the thirteenth turn of the 12th pass.

Where

Upper Bowl, Southern Weyr

OOC Date 14 May 2018 23:00

 

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"Why would you want to help me anyway? I know my name is mud among the lower caverns."


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Upper Bowl

The graceful sweep of spacious bowl lies scoured clean by an easterly breeze. Detritus is whisked neat to the eastern steppe of the bowl that lies several feet lower than the western plateau. White walls contrast the rough granite of the rivercliffs: the giant maw of the Hatching Cavern lies in the thickest part of the western wall, sheltering the training grounds and weyrling barracks lying nor'west. Directly north lies the leadership courtyard, heavily humid and subtly scented by intrigue.


Because this is Southern in the middle of summer, morning and evening is when you want to do any kind of work. Assigned a very specific problem to rectify by his Wingsecond Th'res, F'kan standing over by the pile of rocks that fell during a rockslide when the big storm hit the Weyr. With the poisonings and refugees, certain things weren't a priority. That is until Rhiscorath rose. Now the rocks in front of the entrance to the Hatching caverns are being dealt with by the Lynx wingrider. Wearing a simple outfit consisting of a pair of shorts, a sleeveless tunic and a pair of heavy boots, he is moving some of the medium sized stones around by hand trying to clear better handholds for Quaverilth to handle the big pieces. For now, the man's brown is on a shadowed ledge overhanging the entrance, his wizened face pointed in his rider's direction, watching intently the man's progress.

It's not usually Ariele's responsibility to deliver refreshments about the Weyr, but she's been pushing herself into greater visibility of late, and anything related to the upcoming clutch has been rolled into that particular bundle. Clad in her summer 'uniform' of loose, long-sleeved linen blouse and skirt, with a wide-brimmed hat to shade her porcelain-pale face, the assistant headwoman accompanies a pre-teen, whose job is to deliver things: the disgruntled child has a pitcher of icy-cold fruit juice in one hand, and clean glass in the other. "Brownrider," says Ariele, in her low alto, more cool than warm. "How is it coming along? Neirav has brought you something to drink."

Putting the latest stone down with a huff of effort, F'kan lifts his head in the direction of the voice that calls out. When he spies one of the assistant Headwomen and a youth, he will take a kerchief from his back pocket and use it to wipe at his sweaty brow, his sandy blond hair damply darkened. At the mention of refreshment, a bright smile is flashed at the pair as he looks eternally greatful, "Thank Faranth for that! It should not be this hot this early in the morning, I've hardly gotten started." His voice is low with a subtle rumble, and there is a roguish tilt to his smile, but his manner is easy and he'll politely thank the two as he picks up the drink and takes a long swig of it. Quaverilth lowers his head further and whuffles softly in the direction of the pair with a welcoming ruimble. "And Quav says thank you as well," the brownrider relays for his lifemate.

Ariele gestures, sharply, towards her teenaged companion, who dismisses himself once the drink is out of his hands— but at least he'll leave the pitcher. "You're both welcome," she answers, chin lifting in silent confirmation of the words. "It's a pity we can't put the candidates to work on this particular task, but clearly it can't be left that long; catch-22, I suppose." Her hands clasp each other behind her back, grey eyes lifted to consider F'kan. "We're grateful for your assistance."

F'kan takes another sip of his drink as he studies Ariele for a long moment, keeping it to her face though, not like he would have turns ago. At the pitcher being left he offers one final wave to the youth, who is whuffled once more by the brown on his way out. "Yeah, someone had to do it, and until someone screws up worse that I did, I get the shit jobs," his tone holds no bitterness though, only good humour that he pokes at himself. Another sip and his bright blue eyes narrow slightly on the older woman, "I'm sorry, I know I've seen you around, but I'm blanking on a name…"

Young Neirav is pleased by the brown's attention, and departs eyes shining: there goes another dragon-mad weyrbrat. Ariele, by contrast, is unruffled and composed, aware of F'kan's study but showing no real response to it. "I can see an obvious answer to that," she says. "No more trouble?" As for her name? "Ariele. Assistant Headwoman." She does not point out the fact that they were candidates together, not so many turns ago, though she's probably well aware. Perhaps it's a matter of pride.

"Not if I can help it," F'kan will quip easily when asked about any more trouble, and it's mostly been true. In three days it will be a full Turn since the fight at Igen Weyr and he has kept his nose clean this long, or so the gossip mill says. "Well met Ma'am, I'm F'kan and this handsome brute is my 'mate Qvaerilth." with a ruffle of his galaxy-dusted wings, the brown settles back onto his ledge politely. Finishing off his juice, tilting his head way back to get every last drop, he smacks his lips when he lowers the empty glass, "That really hit the spot. Thanks again," moving over to put the glass next to the pitcher, he looks ready to start back up again but then turns to her, a little puzzled, "Can I help you with anything Ma'am?"

"I'm very glad to hear it," is Ariele's response, and look, her smile is even approving. "Pleased to… meet you both." 'Meet'. Yes. She doesn't seem to linger over that word with some kind of dry amusement that she doesn't share the source of. There's a pause, in response to the brownrider's question; visible hesitation lurks about her expression, then a smooth replacement with a more placid smile. "No, no. I'll merely… supervise for a time. It's important for the candidates, and the candidates will be my responsibility." Hers and the rest of the headwoman's staff - but that's beside the point. Hers.

F'kan knows he's picking up on something from Ariele's tone, but he's trying not to think of it too much as he shrugs his shoulders and goes after the next rock. Thick arms are wrapped around it before he lifts and moves it aside into the pile with others of it's size with a grunt of effort. The older woman's words are slow to trickle through to his consciousness, he isn't exactly the sharpest tool in the shed, but when they do, he looks over at her again with even more puzzlement, "That's true, technically I suppose, but until there are eggs there are no candidates." He looks a little troubled as he goes back to work then, a worried crease between his brows.

Is Ariele enjoying the picture of a young, not-unattractive man performing manual labour? Quite possibly, even if it is troublemaking F'kan. "But there will be candidates, soon enough, and we need to be ready for them." She's quick with the comeback, even if it doesn't necessarily make complete sense. "Is… something wrong, brownrider?"

"No no." F'kan quickly shakes his head as he shrugs his shoulders, "Just..uh..thinking of something else," he says absently with a dismissive wave of his hand. Clearing his throat slightly, he continues with his labor for three more good sized pieces, his wide frame having little trouble with them. After the last one, he again wipes at his brow before coming over to refill his glass. "It's going to be good to have eggs again, it's been a while now since the last Hatching," he drops his eyes briefly as he tries to remember how long it's actually been.

Ariele plainly doesn't believe it, but nor does she seem to have recognised that her own answer was… well, suspicious at best. Especially now that she's straightening her shoulders and looking serious, quite as if she's exaggerating her own role in the brownrider's labours. Is someone important walking past? Probably not… but they could be! "Well over a turn," she agrees. "It's unusual, in a Pass, to have so much time between. It will be good for morale, and for the fighting wings. Especially after all of the complications of the past few months."

F'kan is more than used to serious people looming over him so it's with another shrug of his shoulders that he puts the glass back down, still half full, before he assess the situation. Tilting his head up to his brown, his bright blue eyes unfocus briefly, as there's an obvious conversation taking place. Turning to Ariele, he motions her over to where he is standing, "If you please ma'am, Quav needs room to land." the brown won't move from his ledge until the woman is at a safe distance.

Does Ariele look momentarily uncomfortable, or perhaps just unsettled, as F'kan and his brown converse? Perhaps. But she also moves herself out of the way. "Is he going to clear away the debris?" she supposes, out loud. "That's one advantage over candidate labour." She considers F'kan out of the corner of one eye. "I can make sure fewer of this kind of task are pointed your way, once we do have candidates." It's subtle, quiet, almost an offer of something.

F'kan doesn't seem to notice any discomfort from the woman, probably because he is focused on directing his brown in the next maneuver. With a snap of his oversized, star-dusted and whorled patterned wings, he falls off the ledge gracefully and cricles once before landing next to the pile of rocks. His leanly muscled body coils on itself as he repositions himself in front of the big pile of rocks. Raising himself up on his haunches he uses his forelimbs to grasp a large piece of stone. Craggy nails dig into the hard stone as he flaps his wings open again and with some effort, manages to get high enough to safely between to their pre-arranged spot for dumping the larger pieces.

As busy as F'kan clearly is, and Quaverilth as well, Ariele plainly doesn't take too well to being— ignored? Really, not cool, even when there's actual work involved. She huffs on exhale, then says, exaggeratedly, "Excuse me. Carry on. I'll be glad to see this cleared by the end of the day." She takes the first couple of steps on her way back across the bowl.

F'kan blinks suddenly as Ariele's words sift through the other mental chatter going on. With a confused, "Huh?" he turns to look at the retreating assistant headwoman and he can't figure out what he's done to anger her. "Wait a sec!" he calls as he jogs a couple of steps to catch up. "I'm sorry. Did I do something wrong? I'm really sorry if I managed to offend you, it wasn't my intention at all," the expression in his blue eyes is sincere enough.

Whatever Ariele was attempting, she's abandoned it now. She pauses, turning back towards F'kan, her expression amused and rueful and resigned. "No, no," she says. "It's fine. I shouldn't distract you. It's only…" she hesitates. "You want to prove that you're not the person you used to be, right? That you can be trusted. That you don't have to be given… well, this kind of job." A moment's pause. "Perhaps I can help with that." Her brows raise; her eyes wide and innocent.

"I really don't mind it." F'kan says earnestly, "And with the Candidates soon, I know full well they will get the most of the grunt work." Crossing his arms over his chest, he turns to face Ariele, "I've proven myself to those who matter, if I haven't changed other people's minds by now I probably never will." With a quizzical tilt of his head, he wonders out loud, "Why would you want to help me anyway? I know my name is mud amoung the lower caverns," again no bitterness, just faint curiosity in his words.

"Because… because no one deserves to keep the same reputation forever. If someone changes, why shouldn't they be allowed to change the way people see them?" Ariele may be disappointed by the reception of her… suggestion, but she's not wholly defeated, nor awkward about it. "But no matter. If you're confident about where you stand, I won't intrude on that. Carry on, brownrider."

"Huh." F'kan exclaims softly as the woman provides her reasoning and takes a moment to process her words. "That…that's awfully kind of you. It's really up to my Wingleaders and 'Seconds as to what I get up to." he remarks with another of his easy shrugs. "But I appreciate the offer assistant headwoman. I'm not going to force anyone to change the way they see me, I'd rather my actions speak for themselves." he remarks easily before looking up to see Quaverilth pop back in from between. Holding up a hand, he directs his brown to the next big section of stone for him to haul away.

"And yet, a voice of authority from the caverns never hurts," suggests Ariele, though in truth she's already walking away, waving over her shoulder. "Best of luck, brownrider." She - and her pale, pale skin - are heading safely indoors, out of the sun and heat.

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