Illuminating Troubles


Lorayit.jpg Olira.jpg NPC'd by Nenienne, Daye (NPC'd by Lo)

Date: Jan. 29, 2011
Location: Weyr Gardens, EW
Synopsis: Olira wanders into Lo's garden and he probes for information. The two touch on different subjects with Lorayit being his usual false self and Olira trying her best to avoid his pointed questions.
Rating: PG-13
Logger: Lorayit

It’s early evening in the blooming Weyr gardens. Lorayit hasn’t been out and about like usual, but with the various tasks he’s still getting from the boss up north, one cannot be surprised. For the moment he’s here now, settled on his rock with an exotic-looking woman standing before him dressed in the clothes of dusty stablehand and her long dark hair tied up severely in a ponytail. “It appears he knows of the new changes down here already,” the woman is saying, her tone cold and unyielding as she ignores the beauty of the blue flowers and the patches of herbs surrounding them. The gardener doesn’t appear surprised, leaning back more lazily on his rock as he idly tears apart a picked yellow flower. One would think he was playing the ‘she loves me – she loves me not’ game by the way he tears at petals. “Send him up whatever else you learned about him then, Daye,” he orders her, tossing a petal into the air only to watch it flutter away on the warm breeze.

A young and very pregnant redhead waddles into the gardens and looks around in awe. She approaches a stand of flowers as far away from the two, who might be in some tryst for all she knows, as she can get and leans down — as much as she can at this point — as if to smell them.

Lorayit would notice the redhead entering his garden from his position, only his eyes being any indication of his attention being drawn away as Daye continues to speak. Eyes narrow a fraction as he watches her, having seen the girl from somewhere… “I trust you will know what’s best,” he cuts Daye off, straightening from his lean to toss a chin gesture in Relly’s direction. “I might … have some other news to offer him,” he suddenly tells her, his gaze fixed on the redhead as he gets to his feet and moves passed the dark-haired woman. Daye follows his gaze with little curiosity and studies her as well, but the woman knows best not to question. “Hold off on sending that news until morning,” the blonde man changes his mind easily, now stepping fully away from her and sauntering towards Relly with every intention of speaking with her. There’s an ease in his step, exuding every manner of friendliness and calm a man like him could muster as he follows Relly’s attention and states off to the side from her, “They really do bloom best in this kind of weather, don’t they?” He doesn’t bother looking to see whether or not Daye has left to her duties.

Relly starts upon hearing the voice and quickly looks over. "I'm sorry, I didn't mean to interrupt. I can leave if you want," she offers, looking as if she might run-waddle off from the direction she came in. Then, as if changing her mind, she relaxes and answers the question, "I've never seen them before, but they are lovely," she admits.

“It’s a garden for all,” Lorayit answers her, hands spreading wide from his sides in an all-encompassing gesture of the place. “I merely make sure its colors and vibrancy continues to be so for all that should wander here, like yourself,” he gestures then in Relly’s direction. Thinking this enough to deter the woman from leaving, he clasps his hands behind his back and takes a step forward as if to examine the very flowers that caught her attention. To her last, “Had them brought in from Southern,” he tells her, nodding towards it. “I hear they’re really useful steeped in heated water and flavored with something sweet. In fact,” and now he turns, making a show of regarding her state fully as he rubs a finger against his chin, “word has it from the aunties there that to drink this would help in an easy childbirth.” The smile that blooms is winsome, and infectious before asking, “They swear by it over there, even.”

Relly relaxes fully as he names himself the gardener, and flashes a shy smile. "That would make sense," she says, "I'm from the north originally." As if one couldn't tell from her accent. She leans down a little further and asks, "Is it all right to pick them, then? Or to send someone to pick them for me when the time comes?"

Hearing that Relly was from the north, “Really?” Lorayit appears very interested, the man leaning forward a bit to engage the Tillekian transplant in such conversation leanings. “So am I. Where do you fare from? Your accent …” as faint as it is, but the man’s own is a faint Reachian one himself, and one that maybe most wouldn’t pick up unless in his presence long enough since it has been infused with the one down south. Blue eyes narrow a bit as he tries to recall, finger lifting and moving from side to side before he adds, “I think I’ve seen you around here for awhile now,” appearing confused. “You haven’t been by my garden though.” Beat. “You’re welcome to pick them and try them out,” he says then, the smile back. “You bring by the weyrling, Ahnika, to help? Haven’t I seen you around that one outside the weyrling barracks sometimes?” He’s openly probing now, laying out some of his hand of cards to try and draw some information out of her. And in case she becomes suspicious, he turns back to the flowers and adds, “I’ve never tested such a theory on any woman going into labor, so I’d be interested if you did try them out. Of course, they could be nothing more than tales from old biddies that have far too much time of their hands.” He leans in and gives her a wink along with his crooked smile.

Relly seems to be growing increasingly uncomfortable as he tells her what he knows about her, but not suspicious. Then she remembers her backstory and says lightly, "Here and there. My parents were Weavers and were posted in several different places." She seems more comfortable when the subject returns to the flowers, and she asks, "Do they just help with labor or do they induce it? I don't want to endanger my little Spindle in any way."

“Weavers?” The gardener takes that piece of news in, nodding a bit as he turns to admire another row of flowers next to the ones that have Relly’s attention. “A distinguished path,” he agrees, nodding a bit. “One a sister of mine took up herself. I’m sure,” and he now turns back to her, “they are quite in anticipation of your … ‘little Spindle’?” he asks then, borrowing the words used. “As I’m sure the father is, too. Pretty woman like you … let me guess,” he goes for flattery, his eyes twinkling in the pale light of the moon. “Is he a dragonrider?” he guesses the obvious choice, appearing playful in its deliverance. He addresses the next then with ease, waving a hand to it and saying, “Help with labor, of course! Why would I offer something to induce it? Unless you wanted to?” Because one can be sure, Lorayit would have something for that, too. A hand sweeping over his garden, “I try to vary my collection here,” he explains conversationally, as if in explanation to it. “The healers here have been quite pleased with all I’ve been able to grow. Not bad for a farmer, hm? Lo,” he finally gives his name to, holding out a hand for her to take. “Well met.”

Relly nods, then adds, "I apprenticed for a while, but I wasn't fond of the constraints. I know my way around a loom and a spinning wheel, though. Spindle is my way of identifying the baby, since I don't know if it will be a boy or a girl." At his mention of the father, her expression changes, first to fear, to anger, then to panic before she schools it to a more bland facade. Not having figured out what fiction she would use about the baby's father, she says, "I'm not really sure what the father did for a living. He was a roguish type — there one day, gone the next." She listens to his description of the plant's qualities and nods, then offers him her hand as well, saying, "Relly."

“I think it’s lovely little name,” Lorayit gives, but it’s the body language when he brings up the father of the baby that gets his attention. Ah! He studies her without appearing to, his gaze lingering only long enough now to her eyes before he turning to look about the garden. “I know of those types,” he gives in seeming comfort, his face schooled into console once he turns back to her. “Fuck and leave, and fuck all the consequences. I know of such a one, even. Hurt a friend of mine up in Bitra. Renegade-type, see. I, ah, hope all yours did was leave, unlike hers.” He has no friend up in Bitra to match the story, but it’s there merely to watch Relly’s reaction. Even then, he takes her hand firmly without aggression once her name is given, and the gardener merely states, “Care to tour the garden with me, Relly? There’s not much to seen in this light, but certain flowers do tend to bloom more in the moonlight.”

Relly narrows her eyes as he mentions the renegade-type. "How do you mean ‘all he did’? What could be worse than…" she suddenly realizes her mistake and ends with, "Leaving someone alone and pregnant?" She turns aside for a few seconds until she feels him take her hand, at which point she turns back to him. Attempting a smile, she says, “I would love to. I had heard of moonflowers but not really believed it."

Ah. “A tragic tale, really,” and Lorayit is looking all kinds of sorrow now, the man shaking his head almost mournfully. It’s dramatic flair, really, but one not good at detecting such things would not know of it. He caught the words Relly was about to speak, and the gardener goes on to say, “He was one of those that liked to lift his hand, and fist, to women,” he explains delicately to her with a flourishing hand like a harper, taking her hand and leading her away once she agrees to the tour. The moonflowers he will speak of later. “Such things can be traced through generations of men, see. Anyway, he beat her. A lot. Lost the child. She’s now but half a woman, like these dragonless riders I’ve heard about.” The gardener was such a man of story, not a drop of falsity present in his tone. After a dramatic pause then, “But indeed,” he goes on to say, his hand tightening briefly and warmly her hand, “What could be worse, my lovely dear? Be lucky abandonment was all he gifted you with.” He now knows something’s not right, but he’s not sure what. Only now does he speak of the moonflowers as they walk. “They do indeed exist. The moonflowers. I can show you now, if you wish it,” he adds with a little roguish bow.

Relly shudders and, with her other hand, covers her belly reflexively; defensively. She nods soberly about the lucky part, though part of her suddenly fears — after all, that is something Vaputaro could, and would, do to her. She was uncertain when Ahnika and she made up her "history" and changed her name. Now she is completely resolved to keep up the deception in order to protect the baby. She seems relieved when he changes the subject and says, "I would very much like to see them, please." She leans on him, still shaken over the worst-case scenerio he presented.

Blue eyes drop to that reflexive hand. As if reading her mind, Lorayit pauses their stroll to turn towards her and places a hand on top of her own that holds his. “You are safe here,” he assures her, his honeyed tongue smooth and silky in tone along with the warm, buttery smile that appears. He turns then, resuming their walk, leading Relly towards the moonflowers as he continues to speak for the sake of speaking. “But such talk is not good for the baby, hm? Tell me about your home. Your family. I draw warmth from hearing of such things,” he confides like an old friend, leaning towards her briefly with a brief look. “I mean, you must miss the north, don’t you? I know I do. As much as I love the brightness here … there’s nothing in comparison to the snow-capped mountains and the necessary reasons to cuddle up with a warm body.”

Suddenly remembering the part she's supposed to be playing, Relly attempts to lighten her voice. "Of course I'm safe here," she dissembles, "Why would your friend's… abuser come here for me? I mean, he wouldn't know I exist. And as for the father of this baby, he doesn't even know about it, and it's not like I'm hunting him down to make him support it." She even attempts a laugh, then agrees, "The talk is probably not good for the baby. Hopefully moonflower viewing is." When he asks about her home she goes silent, then starts making things up. "I haven't thought about home in a while. I do like it here; the weather is much more agreeable. I wouldn't want to think of being pregnant in the cold," she says, then continues, "My parents… don't know. They're traditionalists, and I don't think they would approve of this… turn of events."

Completely innocent, “Who said anything about my dear friend’s abuser coming after you?” Perhaps it was Lo’s intention to trip Relly up. He’s not saying. Lips barely twitch at the mention the unnamed father of her baby, eyes intent on her as he walks her down the row of medicinal herbs. “A tragedy,” he drawls eyes drawing away from her towards the rows they pass. “A man, however the way he appears to be, should not live his life not knowing about a son … or a daughter.” Admonishment? Maybe. It’s quick, though, replaced with a smile for her answer on viewing moonflowers over talk of her baby. He falls silent as she starts to speak about home, looking her way on occasion, and when she brings up her parents being traditionalists, “I can sympathize there,” he comments with a look of sober understanding, steering Relly down another row of flowers. “My own saw fit for me and mine to be farmers. Nothing more. I think, my father seeing me here, merely tending flowers …” he shakes his head with mock frustration. Then he pauses his steps, having come to the appropriate row of beautifully-blooming moonflowers. Eyes caress their petals in the silence, the gardener sighing wistfully at them before saying, “How I would love for them to see all I’ve done,” he confides low to her, his gaze on the flowers. Gesturing, “The moonflowers. Look at the way the light catches them so. Have you seen anything like it?” Glancing at her then, “We are not our parents, Relly,” he says in earnest to her. “We live our own lives. They will have to eventually accept that, right?”

Relly says innocently, "Precisely, hence why you didn't need to tell me I was safe." The difference is, she really is innocent. In response to his remark about telling the father, she simply says, "He disappeared. I've no idea where to even start looking for him." Then, shaking off the uncomfortable subject, she sighs when he mentions his parents. "I think growing and tending flowers is a perfectly good occupation, especially if they can be used medicinally." She glances at the vines of moonflowers and their translucent, almost glowing, petals, and mmmmmmmmms, saying "I haven't. These are worth coming south all by themselves." She nods mutely at his next, and then adds a sad, "I don't think they will ever come around. It would be nigh on impossible to marry me off now, and I'm too old to go back to the Weaver hall."

“I’m a natural gentleman,” Lorayit’s lips twitch their smile on the first, it clearly being a touché moment. Looking away from her then, “I have a … talent, for finding people,” he lets her know then, his gaze on the moonflowers. “If you ever want to at least send him a note …” That is his offer, the man trailing it off for Relly’s next in regards to gardening. The smile is brief, but it’s a genuine one. After a mark of silence, “You’re welcome to come by here and view them anytime you want,” he says then, nodding. “I sometimes find the way they glow … illuminating for my thoughts.” Pause. “Did you want to get married?” he asks then, looking over at her when she mentions it in regards of her parents. “I’ve heard of some holdbred women getting pregnant on purpose just to avoid marrying some unpleasant man that’s not of their choosing.” Another pause, but this time it’s hesitation before he admits, “It’s what I did, minus the pregnant part. I ran. Saw no point in getting married when there’s a whole world full of women deserving of me.” The smirk is there, the charmer that he is.

Relly nods when he calls himself a gentleman, and hesitantly answers his offer with, "It might be hard. All I know is he had brown hair and blue eyes and he said his name was Imolo," she's making this up as she goes along, and hopes there are no poor souls out there with that name and description. Then she continues, "I think I'll take you up on that offer; perhaps they could illuminate me too." Without even realizing it she puts her hand back on her belly as he asks about wanting to get married. "I'm not sure," she admits, "Though I don't know that they were actually arranging anything, at any rate." She falters somewhat as she says, "I just think if I went back, there would be nothing for me." She listens to his explanation, nodding at intervals, then says softly, "I hope you find someone deserving."

“Imolo,” Lorayit seems to be tasting that name given on his tongue, his eyes rolling up to the darkening sky as he ponders on that one. “And this … Imolo … have an origin? Where did you last see him?” But then Relly agrees on the moonflowers and there’s an easy chuckle from the gardener as he steps forward towards one of the moonflowers, A knife, gets pulled out from some concealed place at his side away from her, and with one deft stroke he slices one flower clean from its stem. With a flick of fingers, “You should at least keep one in the barracks,” he notes, the flower being offered to her once he slips from her grasp. Before she would speak he would add on, “As a token of our potential friendship, hm?” He makes that all kinds of enticing, and her answer on the matter of marriage gets a wry, “Something tells me that even if they had something – or someone – waiting for you, you would prefer the, ahhh, liberties of the Weyr in comparison.” Liberties. Temptation. It was one and the same to him. Bending to sniff at one of the moonflowers, “Perhaps some dragonrider will sweep you off your feet,” he continues to say, such fantasies that holdbred girls hold on to when thinking of the Weyr. “Or perhaps, a little dragon will?” He straightens up at her last though, the young man’s face shutting down so quickly, so briefly, that one could easily have missed it. That disarming smile is back in place, however, as if it hadn’t happened and the men merely answers a bit cockily with, “I have booze, my garden, and I am surrounded by beautiful women everyday. What more would I need, sweetheart?”

Nenienne says sheepishly, "He never told me where he was from. I didn't even think to ask. I last saw him at…" she might seem to be pausing to recollect, though she's really doing so to make something up, "In Tillek Hold. He may have been a Seacrafter or a Trader; I only saw him the once." She blushes, noticeable even in the moonlight, when he hands her the flower, and murmurs, "Thank you." She doesn't notice his allusion to the barracks, perhaps because she does in fact live there. The blush only deepens as she admits, "I don't know much about the freedom of the Weyr. It seems a bit too wild for me sometimes. Especially the riders. They seem dangerous." She does look momentarily wistful at the mention of impressing a dragon, though that quickly disappears into a more realistic expression and a laugh. "I doubt it. What would they see in me, besides competition in the form of the Spindle?" If she notices his momentary lapse she doesn't note it, but she does say, "There must be someone out there. Maybe one of the beautiful women you're surrounded by, who would give you the attention you deserve." Her tone is completely earnest.

“Tillek!” This name produced seems to spark something in the gardener so suddenly, fingers snapping as Lorayit states, “You know, I do happen to know someone who knows the influential man that runs things up that way. A one by the name of Kelarad, I believe,” and he frowns, as if to recall, a finger tapping against the bottom of his chin slowly before lifting into the air. “I shall send him a note in the morning. If this man is a drifter or a trader, he would know!” Of course, there is no such man, and Lo would cut off his own arm if he ever got in contact with the Tillekian crimelord. He notes the blush though as Relly takes the flower from him, the young blonde man lifting fingers towards her as if he were about to brush her cheek where the blush could be seen before such touch doesn’t make contact. “How becoming,” he murmurs in response to it, or perhaps in response to her own words on the Weyr and those within it. The bare smile full of veiled trouble as his hand drops away, “Stay here long enough, and you will,” he drawls with suggestive certainty, perhaps said to unnerve the woman further. Sweeping a gaze about them, “The wildness, the danger … . I practically love it myself,” he admits as he turns from her, lips twitching to hide the mirth of his performance. “Such temptation at every corner! Surely you’re curious,” he adds, blue eyes lighting on her grey ones, his blonde hair ruffling in the night breeze. “You being here. Perhaps you are drawn to the danger.” She must be to still be in his presence, but Lorayit never lets himself appear as who he really is. As to what a dragon would see in the pregnant woman, “Don’t know much about dragons,” he admits briskly, looking down to examine his fingernails now. “But. I hear they have a way of knowing a person’s heart.” Meeting her gaze then, “You never know.” Of course the same could be said for her last one finding someone deserving, but the man is far too cocky for his own good at this stage of his life. Or so he believes. Eyes going towards the moonflowers with a light snort in dismissal of it, “The only attention I seek is under the furs, Relly,” he states, very blunt with her. It sounds good, right? Hands spreading wide briefly with that cocky wink, “I am, after all, merely here to enjoy the pleasures and sights of the Weyr.”

Upon hearing her cousin's name, Relly's eyes widen, but she quickly recovers and notes, "I've never heard of him. Thank you for doing this for me, and please be sure to thank him as well." Suddenly she's wishing she had a firelizard so she could send her cousin a message without bothering Ahnika or Max. If he mistakes that longing for the idea of impression to a dragon, all the better. "I don't know if I would like to be someone who is used to the wildness or danger. I'm not even sure if I want to raise my baby here," she notes, albeit lying through her teeth. "But I'll at least be staying here until Spindle is born." She pauses, then says, "I'm not so sure about dragons myself. I mean, I've been here long enough to realize some of the things I was told growing up aren't true, but I'm still not sure I would want to fight thread." Her shudder is real. She gives a wistful smile at his admission of what he wants from women, but only says, "Maybe someday you'll be surprised."

While Lorayit picked up on that spark of shock, it being another chink in the puzzle that is ‘Relly’ to him, he does not let on. With a slight bow, “For a beautiful lady, such assistance comes easily to me,” he drawls, the smirk in place before straightening. On such talk of danger, “Then perhaps the answers you seek will come to you while … contemplating its illuminations, hm?” he sends her way, gesturing towards the cut moonflower that she holds. “And if I can be of any help, of course …” Of course. Relly’s words on fighting thread and of even being a dragonrider does not come as a surprise to the gardener. His expression does not change, the man merely seeming to agree with her with, “I will leave such onerous tasks to those who think the skies belong to them. It’s not for me, either.” He steps away then, perhaps for her last, the man looking about him at all those colors and petals in bloom about them. He doesn’t answer her right away, seemingly in thought, but he does answer her with a blithe “In my life? Nothing surprises me anymore, sweetheart.” The smile thrown her way is oddly sad, but brief. Nodding towards her then, “Enjoy the flower, and the garden, Relly,” he states, pointing to his departure. “The night turns dark and even mere gardeners have business to attend to. Perhaps,” and his crooked smile returns, far too easy, “I will see you again. Around. I’ll look into finding Imolo, for you.”

Relly nods dazedly, as everything which has happened rushes in on her. She looks at the flower in her hand and then up at Lorayit, her expression a little sad at his leaving. Aloud, she says, "I imagine you will see me around. I think this is my favorite place in the Weyr right now. And thank you again."

Lo is definitely pleased to hear that. The man steps forward, reaching for her hand if she allows it. If she does, he bends to brush his lips against the back of it before letting go and stating, “Then my job has been fulfilled. I’ve rather found our chat … illuminating.” Yes, he used the word. One cannot say that the man isn’t poetic at least. With a smile full of trouble, he steps off and starts to head out through the extensive garden and in the opposite direction as he makes mental note to seek out Daye for what to write in that note in the morning.

Relly blushes anew as he kisses her hand, saying nothing for now. She glances thoughtfully between the flower in her hand and the departing figure until she can no longer see him. She spends another good half hour looking at the luminous moonflowers, then at the other colorful blooms washed in moonlight. Finally she heads back to the barracks, her expression pensive.

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