A Weyrwoman Returns


Ciara.jpg Randi.jpg

Date: 13th May 2011
Location: Lakeshore
Synopsis: Ciara and Suosith meet Randi and Kaseth at the lakeshore, and have a chat.
Rating: PG-13
Logger: Ciara

With the brightest of contrasts, what once was a desolate, dry and empty scoop in the ground is now a full and luscious lake. Water laps against the shoreline in a gentle internal current, while in the very center, it seems almost eerily calm. A small sign hung on the highest bit of twine states 'LAKE HOPELESS' in forcibly fancy script, yet there doesn't seem to be any apparent reason for the title. Maybe one of the residents knows.

Taking advantage, perhaps, of the cloudless sky and warm weather, a pair of pale figures can be seen lounging on the lakeshore - soaking up the sun. One of those figures happens to be a dragon whose hide tends to hurt the eyes when the sun hits it just right, but in a place like this, that doesn't draw as much attention as it otherwise might. Or does it? This particular pair haven't been seen around these parts for quite some time. The human half - sprawled across her dragon's long neck - is much paler and a fair bit thinner than some might remember, but here in the sun her lifemate looks well enough. Randi lies on her stomach, dressed only in shorts and a breastband, soaking up the heat from warm hide as well as warm sun, and carries on a one-sided conversation with her Kaseth - who looks mildly intrigued by the sand-Hold two children are building between her forepaws.

Ever the social butterfly, Suosith has been making extra effort to get out and about and meet the people of "her" weyr since she and Ciara graduated and left the barracks. The rose-gold appears out of between up above the lake, floating down with delicate wingbeats to set down in the sand, not far from where Kaseth and Randi are relaxing. Ci half slides, half jumps down from her dragon's neck, leaning against Suosith as she takes off her sandals so that her bare feet and press into the sand, yielding a sigh of satisfaction from the young woman.

Dragon> To Kaseth, Suosith's voice bubbles with delight at the sight of the older gold, the dragon of her rider's friend. « Kaseth! It's been ever so long! How are you, how are you? » Rather overbearing her tone may feel, bright and loud in one's head.

Dragon> To Suosith, Kaseth sighs and projects off the appearance of a mental wince, visibly stepping back and drawing up a subtle - but powerful - barrier between the two minds. « I am well, youngling. And yourself? » Not a block, then, but a buffer for that overbearing tone.

Amused by her dragon's silent commentary, Randi buries her face in warm hide and hides her snicker-snorts of laughter. Her shaking shoulders, however, give her away. Taking a deep breath - and ignoring the shake in it - she straightens her spine, holds her chin high and lifts an arm to wave at the barefooted Ciara. "Ci! Did you know you've gone and stolen the sun from the north?" She giggles softly behind one hand, muffling the shrill edge to the sound. "They haven't seen it properly for months, I'm told. I believe they're ready to wage war if you don't give it back soon."

Ciara straightens up and looks over at Randi as she catches sight of the wave out of the corner of her eye. Confusion quickly clouds her features as she processes the Weyrwoman's joke. Then it clicks, and she grins, affecting a mock-sheepish expression. "But I'm not finished with it!" Suosith croons in her musical way, shifting to position herself in the perfect sunbathing position, body curved just so, ready to be admired by all and sundry. Look at her long limbs and lovely hide, the way her wings fold so exquisitely. Show-off. Ci steps away from her dragon, taking her time as she walks, relishing in the feel of the cool sand between her toes. She needed this, apparently. "How're you doing, Randi?"

Dragon> To Kaseth, Suosith seems oblivious to the wince, but the barrier, not so much. Still, she carries on, more than happy to talk about herself now the older gold has inquired. « Oh, just marvellous. I've my new weyr and we're going to decorate it in such lovely ways. I was thinking that some nice pink wall hangings would be a good start, to keep the cold away if we can. »

Dragon> To Suosith, Kaseth releases a sigh, wafting the smell of hot metal and ozone Suosith's way. « Why pink? Why not blue? » She very helpfully flashes the 'perfect' shade in the form of a small blue box. « Blue is a much nicer color. Not that it ever gets cold here. »

"Well I won't be able to defend you when they come after it. My gran's one of the scariest women in the whole world, I'd wager, and they always send the scary ones when it's time to get something they want." She does dutifully admire Suosith, remembering the dragon much smaller, but trusting the silent admiration will be accepted all the same. It's Ciara's question that throws her. She'd been prepared for all sorts of other questions - even sat down with Kaseth and rehearsed her answers - but for all her preparation, she'd neglected the simplest of polite conversation. For an instant, there's panic on her face, but a timely - and sizeable - bolster from Kaseth makes it easier to paste that smile back on her face. "Oh, much better now that I know it's you who took my precious sun. Maybe if we're clever, we can hide it here a little longer. Worth a try, anyhow." And now, eager to turn the conversation away from herself, she returns the polite response. "And yourself?"

Dragon> To Kaseth, Suosith is all clean, sweet perfume to Kaseth's hot metal and ozone, though the perfume sours a little as she considers her weyr painted in blue. Blue? Not even that 'perfect' shade, thank you! « No, I think pink is much more my thing, but thank you, Kaseth! Maybe CiCi might prefer something in blue. » She considers the cold thing, noting, « I do hate drafts, I should like to avoid them. »

Ciara laughs, settling down cross-legged facing Randi so that they can continue the conversation. For all that there's only two Turns between them, she looks very much like a child sitting to listen to an adored adult. The continued topic of the sun-stealing has her looking a bit puzzled again, now, though she's still smiling and chuckling a little at the whole thing. Then Randi's inquiring about her, and Ci shrugs, eyes flicking sideways a moment. "Yeah, pretty good, I guess." Something's troubling her, but, much as Randi turned the attention away from herself, so does Ci do it, too. "Um…did you and Kaseth have a good holiday?" Holiday being the best way she can phrase their unusual absence. Content that she's had the right amount of attention from Randi, Suosith turns her head to watch some children splashing in the lake, waiting for their attention.

Dragon> To Suosith, Kaseth stiffens at the slightly-soured perfume smell, responding with a slight mental shake and the groaning of unhappy gearwork. « Then it seems that this 'CiCi' would be the saner option. » But aside from this, she says nothing, reverting back to the quiet hum of organic machinery that is her constant background noise.

Two weyrwomen spending a pleasant afternoon turning the conversation away from themselves at every turn. This has the potential to be … awkward. "Holiday? Oh, yes. Holiday. It was, um. Splendid. Yes, splendid. Got to visit the family and all that. Anyway," she veers off in yet another direction in a manner very reminiscent of a certain Starsmith - but don't tell her that! - and leans down to flick a bit of sand from her ankle. "How do you like being out of weyrlinghood? I'd heard you were one of the first to get tapped. Congratulations on that, by the way. Well done."

Dragon> To Kaseth, Suosith is ruffled by Kaseth's implication that she's not sane, but, respectful of the gold's seniority, she withdraws rather than argue, leaving only the fading scent of perfume and roses behind her.

Ciara's watching Randi with oddly sharp eyes, her head slightly lowered so that her eyes are looking up at the other woman. It means Ci can quickly dip her gaze down to her hands, which are toying with the sand, when she doesn't want to meet the other woman's eyes. "Oh. Good." Is that all she's going to get in response to her question? Never mind - Randi's questioning her again. Ciara replies like she's heard that question a fair few times before. "Oh, it's quite nice. A mixed bag though I guess, what with not having all the old rules, but having all the new stuff to do, and having to be well-behaved and everything." She starts patting some sand in the middle of her crossed legs into a sand-hold. Well, more of a mound at the moment, but she's working on it. It's a way of looking nonchalant as she asks, "um, is everything okay with you?" Despite her attempts at making it sound natural, the query still sounds awkward off her tongue.

Randi knows that tone and can't help a smile. "The being well-behaved bit is negotiable sometimes, I think. Look at the bronzeriders, hey?" She grins outright, then. "Nah, I remember getting asked that same question over and over, too. My answer was a bit less polite than yours, though. I got bored of the repetition." It never had occured to her that it wasn't repetition to the people who asked. It wasn't as if it was the same person over and over. The next question takes her by surprise, but the awkwardness with which it is posed saves her hide. "What? Me? Yeah, I'm fabulous. Couldn't be better." And she grins, that overbright smile that still fools most people. "Well, I suppose I could be better if someone would update me on all the things I seem to have missed. What's the gossip, then? Knowing this Weyr, I must have missed something juicy, so don't leave anything out."

Ciara smiles, lifting her head properly now, relaxing as Randi sympathises. "Seems like everyone's interested in hearing about what I think of graduating and all that." She laughs, too, catching onto the bronzeriders thing. "I'll try to be better behaved than them, that's not too hard, right?" She keeps her smile in place as she listens, nodding, to what Randi has to say about herself. "Um, well…Indira disappeared for a bit. She's back now, but…yeah. And she's been looking after a little girl recently?" She politely doesn't mention anything of Ahnika's to-dos with Max. "And people're worrying about this iceblood rumour going around." She stops messing around with the half-formed sandhold in order to hold her hands out in an 'anything else?' sort of gesture.

Randi, in turn, snorts. "So long as you remember to put on pants before you leave your weyr, you've already bested some of those bronzers at manners." Her tone is dry, but not harsh. It seems her time away has softened her towards the bronzed set - a little, anyway. "Oh? Wonder where she popped off to, then." Not that she has any right to comment, really. "A little girl, hey? What's she look like? I'd have thought Indira was getting on a bit to be having any more of her own." Mention of Iceblood, however, brings a scowl to her face, though she runs a hand almost soothingly over Kaseth's hide - to the observer, perhaps the gesture seems merely affectionate or distracted. "So that's made it this far south already, has it? Hmph. Sharding blabs." She shakes her head. "I can at least settle your mind on that account, Ciara. The Iceblood scare is nothing more than that - a scare. A few dragons ended up with a bad cold and everyone's so jumpy that they over-panicked. My own mother just sent the last pair back to duty roster last week."

Ciara's eyes widen at that. "I don't think I could ever leave my weyr like that!" Her tone's less insulted, more amazed that anyone could leave in such a state. Poking some windows into her sandhold, she frowns as she thinks. "Not too exceptional I guess…dark hair and eyes, maybe two or three Turns old? I guess she's gotta be Indira's, she's with her all the time." Shrugging, she starts on a door for the hold, glancing up to see what the movement is and noticing Randi running her hand over Kaseth's hide. Hm. Then she's startled, and trying to clarify her earlier statement. "Oh, no, people just heard it was up north, but nobody here's had it as far as we know." Suosith turns her head to look over, now. "I'm glad it's not serious, though. Has it stopped spreading up north?"

Laughing at Ciara's aghast reaction, Randi grins. "Just you wait. Right after a flight, you couldn't tell if you've your skin on, nonetheless your trousers." She traces patterns on Kaseth's skin, thinking. "Dark, you say? Huh." She'll have to remember to ask about that, later. For now, she's distracted by the younger rider's clarification. "It's the dead of winter. You're from Nerat, so I suppose you wouldn't know firsthand, but the winters up north in places like Telgar and High Reaches are fierce. People spend more of the energy they get from their food and sleep just to keep warm, which means there's less left over to help them fight off the bugs that go around any time people live in close spaces like a Weyr. Dragons are the same way. So there'll probably be more dragons getting colds and there will probably be people who'll say it's this Iceblood nonsense, but that's all it is - nonsense." And she says that with confidence, sounding as if she truly believes it.

Ciara flushes red as Randi helpfully makes things even worse with that comment. Ci clearly does not want to think about that particular situation, to judge by the way she says nothing more of it, instead considering the iceblood issue. Her gaze dips to her sandhold again, if only so that she can try to hide her face while it returns to a normal shade. "Oh, I see…so, you don't think it'll get to us down here, because our weather's better than theirs?" She sounds relieved, anyway. Apparently she's not been above the worries that the rumours and gossip have inspired.

Randi sees that flush of red. It makes her smile - genuinely smile. It's pleasing enough that she even lets the subject drop, content with her mental torment of the younger ex-weyrling for one day. "I think even if it does, we've certainly got the Dragonhealers to handle it. I've already seen how this dragon cold presents itself, so I know what to look for. Don't worry, Ci." She straightens to sit properly on Kaseth's neck as the queen rises and stretches before ambling down to slide into the cooling waters. "We'll be fine here!" It's a strange sort of farewell, but it does - as Kaseth submerges Randi into the water - effectively end the conversation.

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