Divale, F'mond


Rough weather interrupts F'mond and Divale's patrol plan, so guess it's time to learn some new card games.


It is afternoon of the nineteenth day of the eleventh month of the fifteenth turn of the 12th pass.


Igen Weyr - Gambling Den

OOC Date 30 Dec 2018 06:00




Gambling Den

Where outside darkness exists even in the light of day due to deep shadows, within this partially hidden door light shines brightly from glows strung liberally across the beams above. People gather around round tables with cards, dice, and every kind of game of chance spread before them. Not everyone at the table plays, but all are known. Strangers, while not unwelcome, are watched carefully.

It is the forty-ninth day of Autumn and 78 degrees. The small dark cloud has grown rapidly over night, covering the blue sky. It blows a furious rush of stirring wind. In a moment, the daylight is gone as visibility plummets. The clouds of stinging sand mercilessly flog all living things as the air itself turns against you. Every living thing chokes on sand and dust before escaping inside.

It may as well be nightfall with how dark it is outside but moments ago it was an overcast afternoon. The autumn winds were up but nothing to really bat an eye at. Which is why work went ahead as it would, so did drills or duties. One brownriding Wingsecond's shift was just starting in the Bazaar and no sooner had she, her current "new" partner and the Guards linked with them, arrived that trouble brewed. Double the trouble! First, they were sent to hunt down some young thieves (Bazaar brats, never a dull moment) and second, well… nature intervened. A storm came in just as they were closing in on their targets but as the skies grew darker and the winds began to pelt sand at a very uncomfortable force, they had to think fast. Things went from organized to less than (hard to see, when you're being choked by dust and sand!), splitting the group up… and going by instinct alone, Divale managed to find the one place she'd rather NOT be — at least in this manner. Keeping close to the door, she pointedly ignores any others seeking "shelter" here for the time being as she works her face mask down and attempts to brush off the worst of the sand from her clothes and head cover. All the while, she mutters a few choice curses under her breath; it's probably not safe to talk too much with sand still cascading off the cloth covering her head.

Honestly, F'mond had no idea what to expect when he was ordered to report to his new wing this morning, but he wasn't really going to ask too many questions as it finally meant he was off the injured rosters! There was a lot of nodding along as Divale provided whatever instructions she saw fit before on to more business. As soon as one 'crisis' is completed, on to the next and F'mond stumbles into the room after. The wind roars and shakes, trying to get in, but the bronzerider is at least using his relatively larger size for something and leaning against the door. He'd probably agree with his 'partner's swearing and add to it himself if he wasn't too busy coughing. Pro-tip, one should probably not try to breath in sand.

It wasn't any long winded instructions, that's for certain! Divale was probably quite cold to the new bronzerider and any discussion between them clipped and to the point. She's had… a rather rough past dealing with bronzeriders within Parhelion and so she's already judging F'mond pretty hard before they even left the Guardhouse. She would, at least, agree on that pro-tip: do not inhale sand! Second pro-tip when in a gamblers den? "Take off your knot," she all but mutters under her breath to him, the moment it's safe to even form words and doing exactly as she warned with her own knot. Sure, the damage is probably done and they've long since been spotted by the very wary patrons and owners of this "fine establishment" but she's not about to go rubbing it in. Maybe it'll be a sign of temporary peace between two very different types of folk? Maybe. "The door will hold?" Not that she's against leaving him there to suffer as a door jam.

Once the coughing fit is under control and F'mond manages to take a swig of water from his canteen, he will slip that knot into his pocket. Not that it will do much good as the leathers and even his stance practically scream RIDER. As for the door, he shrugs and after a quick glance he manages to locate a brick that is probably more often used to prop the door open during the summer heat. F'mond instead maneuvers the brick to try and relieve himself of door-stop duties. "Hopefully. Don't feel like making a barricade…" He mutters back while giving a wary glance to the table closest to him which is taking the time to relocate their game to a different table.

Damn the classic rider clothes and the ingrained stances! It's similar in Divale's case, as her outfit will give her away eventually, knot or no knot. Her stance, however, relaxes and she adopts something a little more fitting for the nature of this place; wary and ever vigilant, without being painfully obvious about it! She scoffs under her breath for F'mond's comment on being a barricade. "How fortunate, then." That he found that brick and it seems to be holding ? for now. Seeing that the one table is vacating, she gestures with a subtle tilt of her head to the bronzerider. After him? She's going to oh-so casually take a swig from her own canteen and just breeze on through this as though they're welcome here and nothing is awkward. "I thought that storm was scheduled for evening." she grumbles darkly, while keeping a secretive eye on a pair in the back who're whispering amongst themselves and occasionally glancing their way. Lovely.

F'mond's stance on the other hand will stick out like a sore thumb even after that knot is hidden away. He catches that subtle head tilt and gives a nod of his own before he drags out that chair and drops down in the seat. "Somebody apparently didn't tell the storm that." Personally, he'll blame Sirocco even as he's eyeing the conspirators in the back. "So, do you got a game of choice? I'm always partial to a little bit of Keroon Hold 'Em…" His accent probably betrays why he might be fond of that particular dragonpoker variant. "Think we need to kill too much time for a game of sevens."

Divale will slither settle into the chair across from F'mond, leaving her back to the door and a wide view of the interior of the den. Most of the other patrons have gone back to ignoring them. Some, including those whisperers, are ghosting to some place further within; no doubt only for 'select' customers. It wouldn't be a surprise either, at least to Divale, if those men have gone to warn the hidden gamblers of two Parhelion 'crashers'. No full blown alarm (or aggression), but the shady types are definitely taking precautions. "Hate to be Sirocco right now or any of the Starcrafters." Divale muses in her driest tone and from the lack of expression, she's probably more amused at the thought of impending lecturing on whoever is at "fault" (rather than just accept weather is unpredictable, really). Her gaze snaps back to F'mond when he mentions a game of choice and her mouth sets in a thin, tense line. Her brows furrow and she almost rejects him; it's written clearly and briefly, on her features. The door rattling from another powerful gust of wind has her focus darting there and then she exhales heavily. "Never played Keroon Hold 'Em. I know a few Bitran games and Dragon Poker but I am not one to usually… play." Not these games, anyhow. She gambles in other forms but none that she's about to divulge to HIM.

Newbie is clearly going to be the first in line for any potential stabbings! Hopefully, Divale will give F'mond more than enough warning if any knifes are approaching as he has a more limited view to the rest of the room since he faces her at least part of the way. "They're used to everybody bitching at them," F'mond just shrugs off any concern for Sirocco. The rattle of the door has the man reaching for one of those spare decks. A quick riffling through the deck shows at least most of the cards are there and so he shuffles and shuffles before beginning to deal. "We have some time to kill. Unless you'd rather play one of those Bitran games?"

He doesn't have to worry too much! Divale may be tempted to see how long it'd take for F'mond to realize an armed person is approaching them but as she doesn't wish to deal with too much chaos at the moment? He's safe. They're both "safe" here, so long as they abide by the unspoken rules and conduct of this place. Next pro-tip? It's always in flux. So good luck with that! Mostly, if they keep their heads down and don't stick their noses in things, they'll be tolerated… for now. "We'd have to have something to wager if we're going to play a Bitran game." she points out, mouth curving in a shadowed hint of a smirk. Then her gaze lowers to observe him dealing the cards with some interest. "So it looks like, by default, it will be your pick of game." Which is the only hint she'll give him that she needs, at the least, a rundown on how it works.

"Technically you'd need something to wager for Hold 'Em too…" F'mond drawls even as he's dealing out the cards. "But probably shouldn't bet anything until after you've at least heard the rules." So a training round, if you will. Two cards each are given to both Divale and himself. "That's your hand. You're looking same 'hands' as regular dragonpoker. Gathers and Conclaves and all that sh—- stuff." Eyes flick up to see if there is any reaction for the near slip of a swear before switching back to the game again. "But there's a twist." And now for the twist, he lays the three cards face up. A Steward, a Ten of Dragons and a Two of Sheaves. All face up. "There's the river."

Divale's brows furrow. "Are we not wagering then?" Clearly, that's not a source of annoyance but more of importance to her. The last bronzerider she gambled with, it was information that was used as wager fodder. She's neither in the mood to go that route or part with what little marks she may have on her person. So there is some relief when F'mond does a "training" round and she is clearly eager to observe and learn. She blinks up at him when he almost swears, then huffs in bemusment, a hint of a wry smirk more in her tone than visible. "… I won't be offended by crass speech. Swear all you like. It's not like we're stuck at the Cresent." Now to the twist! She frowns again, glancing at her hand and then the cards. "The river?" She'd been following fine until that point.

F'mond shrugs. "We can or we can't. I play for cookies with my nieces." They're about seven and it's probably adorable, not that he'd admit to the adorableness. "With wingmates, normally would trade some sweeps but…" He eyes where her knot should be. A little bit awkward wagering wing duties with your boss. As for the permission to swear, he just nods and then clears his throat, returning to the table. "The river. Hard to make a hand with just two cards, right? We both have the same three here…" He taps the table but not the cards. "So we can make bets now. Then there'll be another card added to the river. More bets. One final card added and final round of betting before we all show our hands."

Technically, she isn't the Boss with the capital 'B'. That's Eala's turf and title! She's just the… assistant? Little boss? Divale doesn't really care and has never truly flaunted her rank. Sure, she's used it sometimes but that perk was for personal gain and necessity! "I suppose that does make it difficult," she muses in her usual low voice, half way between sounding unconcerned and uncaring. Then an idea strikes and she sets her hand down, while reaching into the folds of her layered clothing. Hidden pockets, for the win! What she produces is just an eclectic mix of…things that'd make a Raven or Crow proud (if Pern had them). Just random little items, from small (shiny!) pebbles, bits of shell, scraps of fabric, lesser metals and something that suspiciously looks like a broken piece of carved bone (or horn) and the LOOK she gives F'mond speaks volumes: don't ask questions! Divale won't answer any whys or wheres here. They're divided up into "similar" groupings, before one is carefully nudged towards the bronzerider's reach. Then she's focusing on the cards, quiet as she mulls over what he's explained. "Fairly straightforwards." she eventually notes, with a glance back at her own hand.

Who needs corvids when you have firelizards? And apparently magpie wingseconds. F'mond's eyes widen a bit as the items keep coming out. At least he won't vocally ask questions although there is certainly an 'Are you kidding me?' look he gives to the other rider, but he'll accept his little pile. A quick glance at his two cards and he scrunches his face briefly before thumbing out a button and a dice that may or may not have been made out of bone. "I'll raise I guess."

If he keeps being paired with Divale over the next few weeks and months, he'll learn on his own and get the answers if he's sharp enough! There's a reason behind her odd collections, aside from being just… well. Unusual? It's part bad habit, given where she ended up for two Turns of her life. Sometimes, even the littlest of things, could be bartered for something when there was literally nothing to be traded in the Underground! She also ignores that look from him, smirking instead in neutral-fashion as though any and all of this were perfectly normal. "You guess?" Divale's brow quirks but otherwise she is deadpan in expression. Thumbing out her own 'counter' wager, she'll raise his bet without fanfare.

"Isn't it always a guess?" F'mond knows better than to assume he's on Lady Chance's dance card for any particular night. And once she raises, he'll flip out another card into the river. It's nothing special, just another hammer. If it's good for him, he's at least practiced his poker face, although a scrap of ribbon joins the pile. "So I probably shouldn't expect every shift to end at the tables, right?"

Divale's shoulders lift in an indifferent shrug. "Depends on how you view it." Cryptic answer but she doesn't elaborate further. Instead she calmly raises the stakes by adding in a piece of shell. Anyone looking in on their table are probably very confused by their wagering system… or more cautious of them! From the rattling around the door, the storm is still going strong. "No. This is a very rare occurrence. What you do in your own time, however…" She flicks one of her hands dismissively. Not really her concern? It's not like she's straight and narrow herself and therefor does not judge the vices of others.

The wagering system is indeed unique, but that just makes it all the more challenging! Since the weather doesn't seem to be cooperating, looks like F'mond and Divale have plenty of time to 'practice'. While the final flip leads to Divale winning this round and F'mond muttering about beginner's luck, it's time to shuffle it all up and deal it out again. Will he redeem himself? Or will Divale's beginner's luck hold strong? Only time will tell…

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