Night Deals


Jaya.jpg Rocio.jpg

Date: Sept. 11, 2010
Location: Upper Bowl West, EW
Synopsis: During one of her rare nights out, Jaya runs into Rio. She properly meets Eovarijath, touch on a variety of subjects, make promises to each other, and further solidifies their friendship.
Rating: PG-13
Logger: Jaya

Nighttime seems to be one of the better times to catch the newer of the two gold Weyrlings out, for a stroll. While Eovarijath does rise early, she also sleeps for considerable lengths of time during the day, and so come about this time of night, just after Rukbat has slid past the horizon, the young gold is prancing-eager to be out. And Rio has come to really enjoy the sojourns away from the noisy, crowded barracks, so while various Weyrling instructors might direct her to awaken her lifemate earlier, so that the nighttime walks are not taken, Rio has failed to do so. Now the gold half flies, half canters along the bowl, grey wings pitched to feel the wind, to tempt her to the forbidden heights, and her Rio, sheathed in pale fabric, trails along somewhat behind.

It must be one of those rare nights, or, Jaya had anticipated running into one of the weyrlings tonite, for she's here away from her precious bar and the dark corridors that she usually haunts. Her hands tight in pockets, she ambles along looking at nothing in particular as the usual dark thoughts that assail only at night make their presence known. That is, until she sees the grey wings of the beautiful little gold, trying out her wings with the familiar form of Rio not too far behind her. The bar owner straightens up at the sight, a smile coming unbidden to lips as her steps quicken in the pair's direction. Once within earshot of them, "Rio," she calls, a hand lifting in a wave while her eyes find themselves drawn over to Eovarijath. Her steps slowing once she's close, "So this is the one that has captured you so?" she asks, half-teasingly, shooting the weyrling a good-natured but tired smile before she takes in the little dragon's antics.

"Jaya!" Warm alto celebrates the name, and Rio does turn counter to her course, with quick-step, to close the distance to Jaya. A hug, offered, light, before she will too turn to admire Eovarijath. "Yes. Yes… She's beyond beauty, isn't she? The way she moves. You should see her in the daylight. There's subtlety in the gradations of hues, from the greys of her wings, to the pale tones of her underside." And Rio knows them all, oiling the queen several times a day. "She finds her joy in movement. I'll ask her to come over, so you can meet her, but she takes her time. This…Nighttime…Seems to be her element." Rio can understand that, too. "I think she can better pretend to be flying, when she cannot see that she is earthbound."

Returning the hug with warm ease, "I've actually ventured out of my little cave for a walk," Jaya admits on her being there, a self-deprecating laugh spilling forth low at it before she turns to admire the little queen. "She is truly a beauty! She doesn't mind that I'm here, does she?" There's a tentative step forward towards the gold, the bar owner wanting to see those gradations even though it was evening time. She actually looks fascinated, being so near her friend's queen and it takes much for her to keep her hands in her pockets. "She's like us, then," she notes on the night being Eovarijath's element, a knowing smile touching her lips as she finally steals a look over at Rio. "No wonder she chose you, shuga. Strong queen for a strong, nocturnal woman?" She definitely likes that and it shows, sending a pleased look back on the dragon. "How long before she can really fly?" she asks, her dark eyes now taking in those wings.

"Not soon enough. I think, really, that she probably could fly. But they've frightened us enough with the possibilities, that I…And even she… Is not willing to risk it. But she yearns to fly. She dreams of it, even."

The gold does caper over, finally, and shudder to a dust-raising halt by the two, while she'll extend her nose to inhale Jaya's scent, and consider the woman with luminescent whirling-blue eyes. Rio continues, "I don't know why she chose me. And she doesn't answer questions. But I have a place now. And so do you." As long as Rio can extend whatever influence she might, to keep Jaya secure.

"She's going to be brilliant." Not that Jaya knows these things, or even knows -dragons- for that matter, but Rio was her close friend, and as such, her dragon was bound to do great things. Her gaze lingering on Eovarijath, "She'll fly in time, shuga. I have high hopes for the two of you. Those in Crom won't even have a chance to come at you, now." Once the gold comes close, she stares back boldly at the dragon that stares her down, silent for the moment as she's taken stock of. At Rio's last, there's a smile that comes forth then. "Acceptance is a good thing," Jaya agrees, sending Rio a glance. "You do. Perhaps, /we/ do." Going quiet again, her smile fading somewhat, "Some nights I think all this running is only keeping the inevitable from happening," she is comfortable in revealing to the weyrling her dark thoughts, her lips thinning at it. Returing back to studying the gold, "If I can make it here, like you…." she trails, a tired sigh escaping before she touches on another topic. "What all do they have you doing with the others?" she asks, nodding towards the direction of the barracks. "Never really seen a weyrling training class in session."

"Military stuff. Regimented. To teach those who do not understand the ranks… The ranks. And there's exercises. We learn on the ground, what we will learn in the sky, but I don't think much of what we learn is real yet. They're giving us a taste, I think, of what is to come. Next time," Rio catches ahold of Jaya's hand, if she might, "Be outside when the searchdragons are out. Not just at night, when all are asleep. I… Would love to see if… If you'd be Searched. She can't Search you," being gold. "But you're right. There's a sense to it, now, that I'm.. Free from those worries." Rio knows, all too well, what Jaya speaks of, in terms of fear.

The gold's inspection ends, just that abruptly, when a cloud passes over moonlight, and pitches the trio into dark. The pale image of dragon, grey-tinged, turns and launches through the night, limber pale ghost dancing to the distance, while Rio remains, secure in her dragon's safety. "Have you had any problems, Jaya?"

"Like guard training?" Jaya tries to relate, at least a little, her small frown on the contemplative side as she tries to understand. "For fighting Thread, right? Aren't you a bit…scared about that? All the stories, and…" she trails, watching Rio for her expression on that matter until her hand is caught by her. Talk of being searched gets silence at first, the bar owner looking back and tracking the gold once her inspection of her is over. "Me, on a dragon," she muses idly on that, her tone somewhat sardonic. "Putting a criminal on a dragon will be like the Weyr asking for trouble," she notes, but she is thinking of the possibility, and the implications of what that would mean for her future. "I don't know if Vaput would even stop for that, if I were to Impress, and….to keep such thoughts from a dragon…" she shakes her head at that. She squeezes Rio's hand then, glancing over at her before regarding the question given. "Minor," she confesses on problems, one shoulder hitching up as if to shrug. "Just…it's Suli. Woman lied about owning a runner and I didn't catch it until I went to the stables. She tells me it's because she was seeing someone not worth mentioning, and I reckon that's all it is. She has no reason to lie, but Max," she pauses at that, brows drawn together. "Let's just say things aren't good between those two." Shaking her head, "I trust Suli," she announces that firmly. "Just…hard to really trust folks, know what I mean?"

"They don't bother themselves with our human troubles, Jaya." Rio assures, her fingers squeezing the other's hand. "And they already put a criminal on a dragon. A gold. I've the brand to prove it."

At Jaya's considerations about Suli, Rio frowns, that expression visible even despite the veil. "Wait. She said she did or did not own a runner? And who is Max?"

Rio's words bring forth low laughter, especially in regards to her quip on a criminal on a gold. "Reckon they could use another one, shuga?" Jaya seems to tease on that, musing on the possibilities. "Maybe you and I can start a club or something. Something like 'Scarfaces on Wings'?" The latter questions draws that amusement away a little, answering with, "She said she did own one. Got it around hatching time. Must be when she met that trader she was seeing." On Max, "Beast manager over the stables," she answers, nodding in the direction where the stables would be. "He and his men have been used as a sort of security force around here since those two eggs were destroyed and the Weyr was on lockdown. You might have seen him around, though he tends to keep to the stables mostly - the way I keep to the bar." Corner of her mouth lifts at that. Frowning now, "You think there's more to her story, too?" she asks on the barmaid, her tone turning quiet serious.

The obvious is laid out: "If she says she owns one, but she does not… Something is not right." Rio studies the features of the other, at that, and considers, "You have to ask yourself… Why she would lie. And why she would lie to you. Have you met this trader she sees? Maybe… Might be worth seeing if there is a trader she sees? But why would she lie?"

The whys, indeed. Jaya studies Rio's eyes, considering her words before putting forth, "Apparently the trader moved on already, so I haven't met him. But for her to lie…" jaw tightens in the pause, the bar owner mulling over the conversation she had with the barmaid. "Could be nothing," she notes, not wanting to assume the worse. "She came to me from Tackas, a guard that kept me hidden out that way, and he wouldn't fuck me over for all the whores in Telgar. She's given me no reason to think otherwise of her." Eyes looking towards the gold now, "I can keep an eye on her," she suddenly decides to say, but it's obvious that this course is one she doesn't like. "On the sly, anyway. There isn't many places she goes beyond the bar, and with this trader gone now…" eye flicks to Rio then.

"Tell me if I can help." The offer is instinctive, unhesitating. Even when Rio hears herself make it, it is not edited, no conditions placed on the words. Indeed, she reinforces, "Tell me if I can help. My hours are restricted. I will… See if I might press for a firelizard egg." A glance over at the gold suggests that a rank that she may someday achieve, due to her dragon's hide color, may allow her that particular boon. "But if I can watch… You tell me. I am good in the dark."

It's an offer Jaya's definitely considering, disregarding the fact that Rio -could- get in trouble with the weyrlingmaster should she get caught. Meeting her eyes, she gives into a firm nod. "Tell you what," she says, her boots scuffing against the ground as she shifts, her hand still remaining in Rio's. "Bar's been pretty busy these days, so Suli hasn't had much time to be on her own. The next thing that seems out of normal for her, I'll come your way and see if you can keep an eye on her for a bit. She might not notice someone like you about, though, she -does- know who you are if you aren't discreet." Still, just talking about such a task has the bar owner ill at ease. "It's probably nothing, and Max's words are just getting to me," she seems sure of it, at least for now. Something else Rio says occur to her. "Where you going to get a firelizard egg?" she asks then, brow lifting at that.

"Deal." Rio squeezes Jaya's hand and presses her other over it, before releasing. "I don't know. But I want one. They seem very handy. Better than a canine. Isilna has hers trained… So well. And it communicates, and she can use her dragon to better communicate. I think…They could be very good spies." That last is confessed quietly. "I hear they are on the shores. When she can fly…" A look toward where the unseen Eovarijath has gone off to, and Rio instinctively knows, "And we will go look for them, Jaya. Firelizards."

Deal is set, hand is squeezed, and Jaya folds her arms across her chest, nodding and letting the matter drop. The note on using firelizards as spies definitely gets the bar owner's interest, and it's clear she doesn't know all that much about the creatures. "You think we could train them like that?" she wonders aloud, her husky alto even. "I remember seeing one of the guards down at Landing with one of those. A bronze one. Thing scared the shit out of me." But Rio has given the woman -much- to think on, and firelizards and their uses is one of them. The thought of hunting firelizards brings a lopsided grin to the fore, nodding a few times to it as if the idea was taking root in her mind. "It would be worth the hunt if you find some," she agrees, and hand reaching up to rub against her chin. "Might be worth a shot. Can you imagine the stuff I could get it to filch-" she pauses, throwing a look Rio's way before her smile widens. "Just kidding," she tacks on, winking at her on the tease.

"Yes. I think so. They're smarter than canines and more mobile. Why not use them as spies?" Rio asks. Then she listens and laughs, shaking her head, "But you won't get it to filch. You have to be respectable now. You are friends with a dragonrider. A goldrider." That last really hasn't quite entered into Rio's reality. Just happens that her dragon his gold, and pale-gold, at that. The dragon is Eovarijath, and Rio is Eovarijath's rider.

Jaya appears cowed, at least in a overly-dramatic way with her head drooping briefly. "Respectable." The scarred-faced woman's seeming to try that word on for size. "What exactly entails in this 'respectable' business, shuga? Does this mean I can only pickpocket those -outside- the Weyr, or cheat men that -aren't- dragonriders…?" She's likely teasing. She could be. But then, one would never know by the chuckle that follows. If succeeds, she loops an arm around Rio and bumps the woman's shoulder as she adds, "I'll try to be good. It's going to be hard, though," and she gives a dramatic, long-suffering sigh. "Girl's so use to a certain kind of life, see. Guess Vaput taught me well," she adds the last sardonically, sending a pointed look in Rio's direction. "I shall try, for you. And Eovarijath. Bitran's honor." This last is given with some seriousness, the words probably more genuine than the previous ones from the wily bar owner.

"Means you only pickpocket those outside the Weyr and you are -not-," emphasis on that word, "Caught." Both Rio's brows raise. Then she slides her own arm around Jaya's back, and squeezes in a sideways hug. "Let's let Eovarijath get really large, and she can have a conversation with your Vaput. Bitran's honor. I hold you to it." Like she might collect water with a sieve. But Rio has a possibly misplaced sense of trust in this, one of her very few friends.

Oh yes. Jaya's eyes light up at the correction and she throws her head back to laugh. "You're looking at a /pro/, my friend," she notes to the gold weyrling, eyes glinting merrily in the sky's light. "I mean, I there was that -one- time I got caught, but it really wasn't my fault. I got it though. Not caught." Teeth flash and Jaya briefly leans into that sideways hug. Talk of the gold talking to the big Bitran renegade gets both brows raising speculatively in Rio's direction. "I think I'd fucking pay to see that," she admits, showing actual amusement at the thought. "Man can't stand dragons. Came up with some weird stories about them." All the same, the woman seems far less troubled talking about the man in Rio's presence, which is a marked improvement. "Perhaps that queen of yours could dole out some more conversations? I hear some sleazy men in Crom could use a talking to, and I got a man in Nabol that still owes me marks from a card game I actually won fair and square." Oh, the possibilities of being friends with a goldrider. Her gaze go where the little queen could have gone though, staining to see if perhaps she could see her in the small light. "She seems to be getting bigger already," she notes idly, seeming to recall the gold in her mind. "How long does it usually take them to reach full size?"

"Turn or two? We haven't had that class, or if we have, I slept through it. I am…" There's a pause. "Worried about her flights." There's a drop in the cadence and pitch of the last syllable. "Jaya. When that time comes near… I usually carry a dagger with me. Make sure. I do not." There's an earnest desperation, an aching ascension from a smaller fear, to make that request.

Ah. Running a bar for a good while now, Jaya has heard about /those/. Leaning to peer into Rio's eyes, "Don't know much about those other than…" she pauses, frowning briefly. "Well, it's just sex, right?" The way -she- figures it, anyway. "You're worried about that? And…a dagger?" Assuming the worst, "You're not going to kill the poor guy, are you?" she asks quietly, concern showing on her face now.

"Will was the only man who bedded me. It was not… A good experience. I…" She breaks out in a cold sweat thinking about it. "I have had no desire… Maybe that will change, with her. But… I do not want to put a man's life at risk. Or his dragon's." That last is sure, quiet. "Randi was encouraging the Candidates to… Explore partners. I had," and have, "No interest."

Jaya remains quiet for a bit, nodding her understanding for the quiet words spoken. "Perhaps, when the time comes, pass the knife to me for safekeeping?" she suggests, brows furrowed. "Just in case. First time can be jarring, but after that…" this, Jaya seems to know very well. Squeezing her arm encouragingly, "From the way I hear it told at the bar, you're really not yourself during those things," she adds, as if giving the weyrling some helpful words on the matter. "You're more….her. Maybe you won't even realize it happened until it did, shuga. Even if not…well, I kinda agree with Randi." Fixing Rio a look, "You may not have any interest -now-, but, something to consider later on. Might help to find someone you trust a lot. Most men won't be like Will, and it -can- be quite a -" free hand flutters about before her in the pause "-a pleasant experience," she finishes that with a knowing smirk. "Not with a jerk though. Hope the one that catches her first doesn't belong to a jerk."

"Gold's don't rise often." Rio murmurs. It's been her own private mantra and even now she speaks quietly, as if it is best that she does not let Eovarijath overhear. But the gold is immersed in physical sensation of another consideration. Water and silt and mud that Rio will need to clean off on the morrow. "I don't even want to ruin a friendship with that. But… Maybe someone I will never see again." She shrugs, but agrees, privately, "I'll give you my knife. Do not give it back until she's flown."

"Mmm, heard that too," Jaya notes on golds and their rising patterns, her gaze looking over the area where the gold vanished again. "But being here, things will change, shuga. No one will hurt you that way here, and well, you just might strengthen a friendship rather than ruin it, hm?" She nods in indication of that. "Just…keep your options open. /Be/ open? Not that your little beauty will give you must choice otherwise." She nods firmly to their deal of her knife, "You got it. I got your back." She says this with certainty, well aware that Rio has secured her loyalty no matter what.

"She calls, Jaya. Goodnight. Good to see you. And… Watch yourself." In that, Rio means, 'watch Suli'. 'Watch Max'. 'Watch others'. There's another touch, Rio's hand on Jaya's forearm, before the weary Weyrling turns and pads through the familiar dark to the new lake.

"Good night, Rio," Jaya returns with genuine fondness, much of the ghosts that haunt her gaze earlier gone with their talk. "I will. And you." With Rio turning away, the bar owner turns in the opposite direction and makes her way back towards the Weyr where her bar and her cot awaits her.

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