Diem, Xanthee, Vosji, Agertha, A'lira


Just some general conversation about the weather in the Living Caverns


It is midmorning of the seventh day of the second month of the thirteenth turn of the 12th pass.


Living Caverns, Igen Weyr

OOC Date 30 Jan 2018 05:00


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Living Caverns

Brightly lit by a regimented march of strung glow-globes, Igen's busy living caverns are cut of the same exotic limestone design that frequents the bazaar without. Tapestries line the tops of the walls, one for each of Igen's wings, past and present; beneath them, skybroom tables litter the floors in scattered profusion. Some of the wicker chairs have seen better days, but most of the worst offenders have long-ago been replaced. The seemingly random placement of furniture, however, at closer inspection yields a sort of cross-shape of negative space. The northernmost walls and nooks of the caverns are owned by the kitchen's buffet, food-laden thrice daily in regimented shifts by busy bakers from the curtained southern entrance to the kitchens. To the east is a large arch leading outside; westerly lies the large doors leading down into the bowels of the weyr itself.

A cold winter morning means a very chilled-to-the-bone Diem is seated with a piping hot mug of klah in her fingerless gloved hands. She is not dressed in riding leathers at the moment, but rather in dark colored trous, a long sleeved shirt, and a knitted shawl draped over her head and shoulders like a Bazaar maid. "I hate winter." she says to no one in particular. Well, probably to anyone within earshot really~ "I can't ever seem to get warm. Never ever." Sounds an awful lot like complaining. Or rambling. "I wish I had a scarf." Grumbled, that. Some klah is very loudly siiiipped to emphasize just how displeased she is with winter in the desert.

Coming in from the bowl, Xanthee is dressed in obvious workout gear, breathing heavily as she strides in. Tight woolen pants, with an oversized knit sweater with a high collar covering the bottom half of her face. Hair is tied into a high runner tail and a knit headband covers her ears. Cheeks are bright red with exercion as well as the cold, as she makes her way over to the drinks table where she pours herself a large glass of ice water and downs more than half in one long gulp. Only then does she let her eyes wander the Cavern, her gaze falling on the wrapped up Weyrwoman who seems to be talking to herself. Interesting. Moving easily over to a nearby table, she settles with her glass of water and looks over at Diem, "Good Morning Ma'am." She says with a respectful bob of her head. "I actually love winter. I can run without feeling like I'm going to die of heat." Her voice is cheery as she takes another long drink of her water.

"You lived in Fort, ma'am," points out an Istan-accented voice from behind Diem; Vosji, it seems, is now comfortable enough with the Senior that she can tease her while still respecting her. "I would have assumed you got used to the cold at some point?" She's also not the only one wrapped up, though Vosji has a massive sweater with a double-folded turtleneck that hangs down to her knees, as well as a fuzzy hat covering her head and ears. "I could probably help with the scarf part, though —" Xanthee, on the other hand, well. Xanthee's declaration gets some side-eye from the heat-lover. "Easier to die of cold," she says solemnly.

Cheerful, youthful exhuberance. Didn't Agertha have that once upon a time? The greenrider follows after Xanthee, twins in tow, "But I don't wanna go to the harper classes today!" this from the girl that is clearly trying to pull away from Agertha. The boy simply follows behind his mother, and sister with a glum look on his face. They're not getting out of it, so best to just get the day done and over with. Agertha ignores the girl as she awkwardly puts a plate together for each child, then sits them down, "Eat," she says firmly, it's at that point that Agertha notices Diem, and snaps off a crisp salute before moving to gather a plate for herself, "Sandria will be along to make sure you get to your harper lessons," Mother has a sweep to fly, "So eat." Vosji is given a nod, of agreement, "Frostbite's no one's friend. Neither is hypothermia," she says solmnly after fixing herself a quick plate, and returning to the table she deposited her two weyrbrats at.

Diem continues to sip her klah when someone addresses her from the side, and since she can't see beyond the shawl that's draped over her head, she sets the mug down to glance in Xanthee's direction. "You do?" Blasphemy! Not really. She's just in a grumpy mood. Vosji is next to snag her attention and Diem collects her warm mug with both hands again — she'll take all the heat she can get right now. "Winter at Fort isn't as brutal as winter in the desert, the wind chill here is dangerous. Which is why a scarf would be grand…" Agertha is agreed with whole heartedly. "Frostbite, yes! You can lose fingers and toes. And your nose!" She squinty-eyes Xanthee for good measure, assessing to see if the teen's nose is turning colors.

Her nose may be bright red from cold, but no evidence of frostibite on Xanthee's face. She folds down the high collar on her sweater, which leaves a comical line where the redness ends and her usual skin tone picks back up on the lower half of her face. At the newer arrivals, she looks up and nods to Vosji and Agertha in turn. "Ma'am and Ma'am." then she turns back to the Weyrwoman and smiles, "I guess living here my whole life I don't really mind the cold or the wind. Give me that over a summer sandstorm anyday." She says as she takes another sip of her water, eyes trailing over to the food tables, her stomach rumbling with hunger.

If anything, that explanation has Vosji's eyes a little narrower; she blinks as she claims a seat near Diem. "If you've lived here always, I can't imagine why you wouldn't prefer the local weather, I guess; I'm still not used to the desert nights, and I don't think I'll ever be a fan. Weyrwoman, I'd be happy to provide you a scarf given a couple of days." Vosji likes to knit in her copious lack of spare time, after all. "Though to be fair, heat can kill readily too — but it won't take off your nose." It may be because one superior merited a salute and another didn't, or just that she can't stand little kids, but Agertha isn't getting any present acknowledgement from Vosji, sorry.

"Mind I love the cold. I'm still mindful of the dangers of the cold," Agertha says as she blocks the girl from leaving, "I'll take a desert winter over a desert summer, but nothing beats a winter back in High Reaches," winters back home will ever hold a special place in the greenrider's heart, "Sit," and the girl sits back down only to glare at the plate in front of her. She knows better than to argue, or throw glares at people. Grystan kicks his sister under the table, and hisses something at her, "Sorry I'm late," the nanny in question says as she finally arrives. Grystan will stand, and salute all present, even it is done with a glum look to his face. There are so many more interesting things he could be doing other than sitting through boring lessons on history, writing, and the like. Annis follows her brother's example, and drags her heels as they're led away. Agertha belatedly salutes Vosji, and continues her meal. Summers. She'll pass thanks.

"Very true." Diem agrees with Xanthee about the sandstorms. "Fort's winters aren't anything like Igen's and I imagine they are quite similar to those at High Reaches." She'll nod to Agertha in agreement as well. "It's just that between the summer desert heat and the heat of the hatching sands, my blood has thinned and I can't seem to ever get warm during the winter months anymore." Which is why she turns a grin toward the Weyrlingmaster. "Ohh, I would love a new scarf, Vosji! In purple?" Because it's her favorite color, afterall. Some more klah is sipped before she continues, "I think we're all very hearty in our own way. There's no other way to be at Igen."

Xanthee giggles brightly at Vosji's dislike of desert nights, "Oh but the desert nights are the best to find someone to snuggle up with." She says with a youthful giggle as she decides that she will get herself some food. So moving over to the spread, she fills a plate with some eggs, bacon and several slices of toasted bread slathered with butter. As she makes her way back to the table, she smiles at the little weyrbrats going off to their Harper lessons, bringing a wave of nostalgia over her as she smiles at Agertha, "I was much the same way, the aunties had to drag me to my harper lessons, I'd rather be doing anything else." When she settles back into her chair, she ponders Diem's words, "Well I've only even been here and Southern for a few months during the summer, and I much prefer Igen's weather. The humidity does not agree with me one bit." Then she will focus on stuffing her face to quench the rumble from her midsection.

"I can do purple. Darker, I hope, is all right," Vosji is making a mental note of Diem's request, which is probably getting filed away with Iskanzivoth. For things that only need to last a few hours, he's a great external memory bank. After that, he's a dragon. "And I hadn't stopped to consider the sands, you're right, that will mess with your perception." At least now everyone else's input is earning crooked-ish smiles, though Xanthee's latest observation gets only an, "If that's your thing," implying that it isn't exactly hers. "Southern's weather is lovely, I think, but I'm sure it would get old." Is it possible that this is a discussion of weather that's actually interesting? It seems like it is, and if anything that gets her smiling around her mug of water (you did read that correctly) even more.

A sigh is given as Th'sher arrives, "Well, best to get this done," Even Agertha has things she doesn't like to do. Flying sweeps with Th'sher is one of those things. Salutes are given to Diem, and Vosji before she's off to get her sweeps done.

Xanthee looks up from her eating as Agertha leaves and she gives a small wave since her mouth is still too full. When she finally smiles she looks over at Vosji and smiles, "So how are you Ma'am? I think the last time we met there were still eggs on the Sands. In the Laundry Room." Xanthee elaborates as she takes another bite.

Diem shudders a bit when a cold chill somehow makes its way through her knitted shawl. This requires more piping hot klah, though she's not that motivated to stand up just yet. Instead, she continues sitting and just wraps the shawl around her neck and shoulders a little tighter in hopes that the chill won't last. "Dark purple is perfect, just so long as the yarn is soft and fuzzy." She's not incredibly fussy on a good day, but when it comes to staying warm… well. She might get a little high maintenance. "What's your name?" That's to Xanthee, of course, since they haven't formally met.

Food, glorious food: the one thing A'lira has yet to outgrow the need to eat, oh his weight in, for he is still a very young man. And so it is to the Living Caverns he goes in search of something hearty and filling, one more stop in many over the course of his day, ignoring the chill of the day as though it simply does not exist. His jacket will help hold the stuff at bay, so he doesn't bother to remove it. For once, though, his cloting isn't rumpled, or being clung to by small people or small firelizards, so he's going to enjoy his momentary freedom to procure some mashed tubers and a couple thick slices of wherry. Oh, and also a long tall glass of some citrusy juice to wash it all down with. That done, he makes his way to a table to fold his long body into. Oh, wait, there are people here. He'll offer the usual greetings to all: "Weyrwoman, Werlingmaster… and troublemaker." The last is aimed at Xanthee with a grin, for he remembers her from their shared candidacy, where he often had a good laugh over her mooning about.

"That's me." Vosji could even say so twice, though she only had just confirmed it for Xanthee and won't echo the response back to A'lira. He just gets a nod, the kind that's knowing, an I-remember-you-you-weren't-a-screwup kind of nod. Except in his case it's more like he started out a screwup and then improved, which is almost better on some stages. "I am not currently freezing, so I can't complain," she tells Xanthee the nameless, though she probably knew it once, "And I can promise you, Diem, that everything I have is soft and fuzzy." She takes off her hat to extend it goldrider-wards, offering a chance to feel the yarn she's working with. Even if her hat is definitely not purple.

Swallowing to clear her throat as the Weyrwoman adresses her, Xanthee looks over at Diem with a smile, "Xanthee, Ma'am." then a familiar brownrider is joining them and she giggles slightly with a roll of her eyes at the troublemaker comment. "Hi A'lira, I heard you weyrmated a Zingari lady. Congratulations on that." Xan hears the gossip from everywhere. Turning back to Vosji, she nods a bit and then narrows her eyes, remembering something, "Your name came up in a conversation recenlty and I can't quite remember the context anymore." The wheels are turning but apparently coming up empty.

"Xanthee Troublemaker." Of course Diem combines the girl's actual name with the nickname that A'lira just announced. It's what's been committed to memory, therefore the girl will be called one or the other from now on. Once Vosji's hat is taken, her hands feel the soft yarn and she immediate nods her approval, "This is perfect." She's tempted to try it on, but she's not ready to come out from underneath the warmth of her shawl yet. Diem is, however, reminded that she needs more klah in her mug and she rises to go get a refill. "A'lira, Zsaviranth says 'hello' to your Kyprioth." Nothing like a classic game of Telephone between dragonriders and dragons! "If you'll both excuse us," She's addressing Xanthee and A'lira together this time. "I must have a discussion with Weyrlingmaster Vosji." Which means they're both off to talk about yarn and knitting patterns for her scarf.

Oh, yeah, that time A'lira lost his mind and acted like a rank apprentice instead of a grown man who really ought to have known better. Fortunately for all involved, that soon righted itself. Meanwhile, Vosji and Diem are making their escape, but not before an exchange of greetings between dragons. "Yeah. I did. thanks." He smiles fondly for the whole episode, rubbing a hand over his clean-haven scalp.

Watch Xanthee's jaw drop as the Weyrwoman calls her 'Xanthee Troublemaker' and she just sits there, doing her best impression of a fish, while the Weyrwoman and Weyrlingmaster make their way out of the caverns. Then a look as sharp as daggers falls on the brownrider, "Why would you say that? I am so not a troublemaker, and I wasn't even in our Candidate class either." In her second Candidacy though… but he doesn't need to know that. "And if you mean to blame me for the trouble in the Zingari grounds, that was not my doing although I was involved." Great, just what she needs, the Weyrwoman and the Weyringmaster thinking of her as troublemaker. What if they get wind of what happened during her Candidacy at Southern? Anxiety grips her then and she continues to frown at A'lira, waiting for a response.

A'lira laughs outright at her. "C'mon, Xanthee, they ain't gonna penalize you for me teasin' you, you know that. I think they know you weren't a troublemaker." And then he stares at her, like he's seeing her for the first time. "I mean, hi, have we met? Since when am I gonna blame you for some jackass bein' a jackass? Thy told me that guy got beaten like a tent peg for hittin' you. Good on 'em, I say." He's heard very little about her candidacy in Southern, only that she'd been sent back for some major infraction or other; some rumors run to the beaten brownrider and that candidacy being somehow connected, but A'lira isn't much for believing everything he hears. "Besides, Vosji remembers me screwing up well and good, and she doesn't hold it against me."

Xanthee leans back in her chair with a groan, scrubbing her hands over her face as she takes several deep breaths. "Still. What a first impression!" she bemoans slightly as she drops her hands and looks back down at the food in front of her, suddenly her appetite quite gone. Reaching up she frees her hair from the confines of the runnertail and shakes out the waves of black hair, running her fingers through it idly. "Just.. there's going to be another clutch around soon, now is not the time for me to get a reputation as a troublemaker, and it doesn't matter if you mean it or not, I know how the gossip flows around here, people pass on eveything, real or false." Another few more deep breaths to steady her frying nerves.

A'lira rubs his hands over his face, sighing. She has a point, that Xanthee. "Yeah, I se your point… look, I'll make sure they know I was kidding, if it helps. Especially if you want to Stand for this clutch coming up." Dropping his hands, he studies Xanthee thoughtfully. "Although, if it makes you feel any better — " And it might not, consdiering how stressed Xanthee seems to be right at this moment. " — nobody I've heard thinks you're trouble. A little flighty, maybe, but not real trouble. Think they're scared of your brother and that giant Miner of yours." That might sound like a joke, only he's not teasing this time. Indeed, he's rather thoguhtful. "Heard tell they about broke every bone in that guy's body for laying a hand on you. You don't get guys bein' that protective unless you're a good girl, you know. And," And here, he does laugh. "People aways tellin' me I gotta go to the Tea Room when you work there. You seem t'make the best tea accordin' to the experts on tea. And you're charmin', they tell me."

Xanthee sits up a little straighter and seems to preen slightly as A'lira seems to go the flat out flattery route, but it does do something to soothe her nerves, and she finally relaxed enough to start picking at her food again. At the description of what happened to the unfortunate F'kan, Xanthee waves a hand dimissively, "And right there is an example of the truth of the matter being ignored. The man was able to walk under his own power and mount his dragon unassissted, the only thing I think that was broken was his nose thanks to that giant Miner of mine." She smiles a little bit an then beams when her tea making skills are mentioned, giggling mirthfully, "Wow, you really are laying it on thick. It's ok, I forgive you for the comment."

A'lira chuckles. "Oh, that much I do know. I saw him just long enough to make sure he wasn't maimed or whatever." And no sympathy from him, either; plainly A'lira doesn't consider a broken nose maiming, especially a well-earned broken nose. "Yeah, I asked a Trader who was actually there what really happened, and can't say as I blame Malosim for rearrangin' his face for him. Long as you're okay, I'm good." His grin is pure, boyish mischief when she teases him. "Ah, well, I do try. Besides, Vosji could tell you the trouble I got in. Woulda got my ass kicked out had I not already Impressed." Oh, if only Xanthee knew the things he'd done as a Candidate — only the strategic timing of things had kept he and Zavyr from being discovered sooner.

Shrugging off the depressing subject of her seventeenth Turnday party, Xanthee waves a hand dismissively. "I'm perfectly fine, as long as that brownrider remains on another continent." She says with fierceness flashing in her emerald eyes for a moment before she shakes it off and takes in what he isn saying about his weyrlinghood. And then she is laughing at his words, "Oh so is that what I did wrong? I should have waiting till after I impressed to start breaking the rules. I'll remember that." She leans forward in her chair a little bit, "So what exactly did you do to get in trouble?" She asks curiously.

"I agree. Man's a menace." A'lira rolls his eyes skyward, wishing he'd never have to see the man again in life. He just makes brownriders look bad and this particular brownrider wants nothing to do with it. But to a better subject! "Ha, no, I don't recommend it, actually. It was a mess, I tellya." And then he rubs his forehead slowly, trying to rid himself of the twinge of a headache that begins just there, between his eyebrows. "'Member Zavyr? Well, she and I got caught flirtin' way, way too much when our dragons were young." He heaves a long, soft sigh. "Got our asses nine months of restriction. Mostly from bein' alone together since plainly we wasn't to be trusted alone in a room together."

Xanthee raises her eyebrow at that juicy piece of gossip. "I remember Zavyr, took me forever to figure out she was well a she." She says with a a giggle that trails off into a little sigh. "Well I'll remember that. I don't plan on breaking anymore rules if I'm asked to stand again, and especially not if I Impress." She seems rather resolute on that fact, her eyes flashing with determination as she takes another nibble at her buttered toast. "So how is your brown? Faring well I hope. I've always had a soft spot for browns." She says wistfully.

A'lira grins wryly. "No, Xan, I don't think you will. Break any rules, that is — you're smarter'n I was." And then, he brightens — his favorite subject! "Kyprioth's doin' great, actually. In fact, ya wanna come meet him? He lives for attention, you know." Because A'lira totally ignores the poor beast every chance he gets, as far as the brown is concerned; there are never enough scritches to suit him. And A'lira is always willing to indulge the brown's desire to meet new people, especially people he can get to pat him and make much of him.

A small smile curls her lips as Xanthee sees the way the brownrider brightens when he talks of his dragon. Eyes grow round and smile stretches wider when he offers to introduce her, her head nods enthusiastically as she stuffs the rest of her toast into her mouth, wiping the crumbs off her fingers over the plate before pcking it up and dumping it with the other dirty dishes, before zooming back to the table and smiling down at A'lira "Ok let's go." The eagerness clearly written over her face.

And out they go! Apparently, A'lira's forgotten he was supposed to be eating, too.

Central Bowl
Cradled childlike in an easterly mountainous embrace, the steppes of the central bowl nestle cozily between lake and weyr. The latticework of dusty adobe paths spider out from the southerly Weyr Road, wagon-ruts of which curve lazily to the adobe sprawl of the northeastern bazaar. A small footpath, just as abused, ambles away from the lake's shore, travelling over rock and hill to the northern dragonet complex and branching itself due west to end at the entrance of the blessedly cool inner caverns. The abandoned caverns of Igen-that-was lie at the end of one disused tracking. All around, the dizzying heights of the caldera's sharp-sloped sides are pocked here and there with ledges, the weyrs' draconic occupants needing no path to guide their way.

Across the bowl, one particular brown hide stands out, more for the appearance of fur than aught else; he's a stocky, low-slung brown, just lying there basking in the sun. At his rider's mental call, Kyprioth looks up, his tailtip twitching in happy recognition ere he uncoils and heads right for his tall bondate, stopping just short of both A'lira and Xanthee. Curiously, he lowers his muzzle to sniff in the girl's general direction, looking very, very hopeful indeed. "This is Kyprioth… and Kyp, this is Xanthee. She's a friend of mine."

Watching the brown move over to them, Xanthee can't help a little giggle bubble out of her. When he stops before them and lowers his muzzle to sniff at her, the grin on her face is pure elation. "It's a pleasure to meet you Kyprioth." she says with a bob of her head in respect. Then she holds up a hand but pauses before she makes contact, having grown up in the Weyr, she knows to ask first. "May I?" she questions, turning her gaze on the brown's rider.

Kyprioth begins to croon encouragingly, angling himself so he's as close to Xanthee as he can be without bowling her over. Soon, his muzzle is right under her hand, subtly nudging, nudging. Pretty pretty please? say the dragon eye turned on Xanthee, whirling with eager friendliness. "Absolutely! He won't budge til ya do, anyway." Laughing at his dragon's antics, he rests an elbow on the brown's shoulder, looking on him fondly. "He likes his ridges scratched especially."

More giggling erupts from Xanthee at the antics of the brown, so that as soon as he nudges her hand, she brings up her other hand and uses them both in tandem to scritch along his muzzle, alternating with long pets as she marvels at the smoothness of him. Making her way slowly along his muzzle, travelling to his eyeridges, thoughts of another brown enters her mind, one who was the color of rich earthy brown with golden highlights. Flashes of a much younger raven-haired girl giving very similar scritches to that other brown. Her breath catches in her throat and she fights back a sniffle as her eyes fill with tears, ready to brim over. As she makes it to his eyeridges, she tries to pull it together, but the memories are flooding her now, reminding her of one who has been gone close to thirteen Turns. Taking her hands off him, she covers her eyes and begins to sob into them, her body shaking and not with the cold.

A'lirais a veritable puddle of a dragon, for Xanthee plainly knows just how to scratch a dragon. But then, she would, being a Weyrbrat, yes? And so it goes, until Xanthee is cryingnot the plan A'lira has in mind! He's not used to women crying in his presence, and straightens in alarm, his first instinct is to try and wrap an arm around her shoulders, and offer his own shoulder (or however close Xanthee can come to his shoulder) for her to lean into. "Ah, hell, Xanthee… I wasn't aimin' to make you cry. I'm sorry." Kyprioth, too, is concerned, leaning in and cupping his wings, hopefully to block the view of those nosy types that may be wandering about at this hour.

Uncovering her face, Xanthee wipes at her eyes as she forces herself back under control, hands fanning at her face to cool her burning cheeks. "It's not you." Xanthee says with a weak giggle as she wipes the last of the moisture from her face with the sleeve of her oversized sweater. When she sees the dragon use his wings as a screen, she can't help but give him a little kiss and a good scritching, "Thank you Kyprioth. I'm sorry about that. I just got caught up in memories of my mom's brown Iyrith." something in her throat catches at his name, but she swallows it back down at she offers a weak smile at the brownrider. "It happens at the worst times." She says with a self-deprecating chuckle.

Oh, that's a relief: sort of, anyway. Once Xanthee's got control of herself, A'lira will step back and allow her to gather herself. Kyprioth looks down on Xanthee, and gives a happy little chirp as she kisses him, wings sweeping slowly backward until they come to rest along his back again. A'lira smothers a laugh at the silliness of the dragon. "Clown." He accuses fondly before he returns his attention to Xanthee. It's okay, really it is. Memories'll getcha like that." He offers her a sympathetic look for the loss of her mother, but hesitates to ask questions that might bring those tears she so bravely swallows back up to the surface. "And he thanks you. Don't think he'll mind if'n ya visit him when he's about. He likes you." And to prove it, the dragon touches the girl's shoulder with a gentle nose, offering friendship and sympathy as his tail snakes around his rider's ankle, a habit of long standing.

The girl's giggling gets louder as the brown chirps and Xanthee reaches out to give his big head a hug. "You don't have to thank me. And I would love to come see you sometimes, I always have time for a good scritching." She picks up her hands and gives him a demonstration before she startles. "Shards and Shells! My shift at the Tea Room! I'm going to be late!" And she still has to change into her work clothes. With one final pat for Kyp, Xan waves at A'lira, "Thanks so much, see you around!" And then she is gone in a flash, running full out in the direction of the Resident Terraces.

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