Soothing The Soul


Max.jpg Maura.jpg

Date: 7/15/11
Location: Stables - Eastern Weyr
Synopsis: Comisserating over how awesome horses are, and healing bruises
Rating: IfPG -16 for some gutterminded humor
Logger: Maura

It’s been no secret at all that Maura’s been keeping to herself for the past few days. Well, herself and the handful of renegades that she always hangs out with. Because they would give her an ass-kicking like nobody’s business if she avoided them, and thus spilling her secrets, for *too* long. But to everyone else, it’s a quiet and withdrawn little bluerider that darts in and out of crowds and no matter how hot it is outside, always has her riding jacket on. Unless she is alone. Which she is now, talking to the runnerbeasts of all things, and sneaking them treats like apples. Nobody is going to question her here, or so she thinks, so she’s hooked her jacket up on a wall and seems to be having a friendly little chat. “Who’s a beautiful boy. You are! Yes you are.” Uh-huh. Of course, anyone walking in is going to see, even in poor lighting, the healing bruises on her arms. It looks even worse now than it did initially because of the way these things change color. A nice spread of pea green, yellow, purple, and blue. And they both look suspiciously shaped like hands; one conveniently below each shoulder.

Evening finds the beast caverns settling to their usual earthy somnolence and deserted of all the usual staff that bustle about during daylight hours. Save that is, for one beast manager who on his way to spend some time with his daughter and now exits his makeshift office and private quarters. At first its amusement that slips onto scarred features when he spots Maura sweet talking Renegade, his own personal runner. “Don’t know ‘bout beautiful,” he drawls with a teasing grin in place as he saunters closer, “but I been told I got a cute arse.” That slips right off as keen eyes catch to the bruising the bluerider sports below each shoulder and a light frown forms. Max doesn’t remark on them just yet, but instead comes to a halt and leans a shoulder up against the palomino stallion’s stall dark regard settled on Maura, “Keep feedin’ him those and he’ll have to go on a diet,” his smile friendly with a touch of concern attached.

Doesn’t’ it just figure that Maura would pick the runner called Renegade to sweet talk? “Sorry, but you are not going to con me into checking out your arse.” Maura is quick to reply, a smile kicking up at the corners of her mouth at the teasing tone. “Besides, he /is/ beautiful. What a gorgeous mane of hair, and his coloring…” Yes, that is a wistful expression on her face. “I bet he gives you a load of trouble doesn’t he. The best ones always do, right?” The girl looks over at just the wrong time, when Max takes in her appearance and frowns. “I’ve only snuck him one so far.” She promises, glancing away with a falter to her grin. “Me, on the other hand – not lookin’ so gorgeous these days I know. Green and yellow aren’t really my colors.”

A cocky grin is all that meets Maura’s reply but he adds nothing further for he’s no longer on the prowl these days. Instead its pride that washes across the beast manager’s face. “Aye, he’s a right ornery bastard,” he admits with his dark regard drifting over Renegade and then a devilish smirk slips into place, “I like ‘em wild and full of shit. Keeps life interestin’, aye?” The wink delivered at the end probably saying volumes more than his simply commenting on challenging runners. Max doesn’t miss much, the slip of Maura’s grin and wry wording causing him to set the bluerider with a long look, his eyes narrowing slightly at the corners. “Ain’t a woman I know what looks good in those colours,” using her euphemism for the bruising she sports, “You get drunk and forget to strap in?” Knowing full well that his sardonic stab at what had happened is likely way off the mark.

There’s no way that Maura can contain a laugh with that kind of humor on display. “It sure does. Once you know how to keep ‘em in line, at least.” It would seem that the two like their… runners, the same way. Though the girl’s smirk suggests she’s well aware of the multiple meanings and has no problem playing along. It’s Max’s easygoing manner that makes it easy for her to open up a bit, or it could also be because she can concentrate on showering the palomino with her attention rather than having to think too much about what she says or does. She’s not near as over-wrought or angry as she was the night she first came back from Igen. Nor does she have the worry of how to tell the other renegades what kind of trouble she’s found. That’s all water under the bridge now, even if there’s a bit too much of it all lingering fresh in her mind. “I wish that were it.” She does admit, favoring the Beastmaster with a wry smile. “But I think you know that isn’t it. I ran into some trouble helping out my sister. She didn’t bother to tell me what was going on when she sent word for my help, so I went in blind. Thought she just needed some marks again.”

“Keep ‘em in line? Naw, gotta give ‘em their heads and hold on for the ride,” Max returns with a grin for he’s well aware that he’s around as ornery and full of shit as his runner at times. Renegade of course is lapping up the attention even if he’s rolling his eyes and pretending like he’s not, the odd whuff of hot air blown at Maura, giving him away. In that lean he’s taken to against the stall, Max folds his arms across his chest and a brow goes up as the bluerider explains and then folds toward the other in a heavy frown, lips pursing about his discontent for the young woman having gotten roughed up. He’s quiet a moment, schooling the anger into line with just a muscle left ticking in his jaw that speaks to its presence. “Where?” he asks in low tone that’s almost a growl.

“Not touching that comment with a ten foot pole, buddy.” Maura decides, letting on that she’s got as much of a gutter mind as most other people do here. She just doesn’t voice it! “I don’t believe you for a minute, big guy. Pretendin’ to be all upset at the attention. All you gorgeous types /love/ it. Uh-huh, I know.” If she’s using a bit of a baby-talk voice, it can surely be forgiven right? I mean… it’s a horse she’s talking to after all. “…. Igen.” She murmurs, when asked of location. She knows that growly kind of tone, and the fact that if she doesn’t answer it’ll just mean more questions out of more people until the information is found anyway. “Don’t know who they were yet, exactly. But once my sister’s been cleared to go ::between:: I’ll be heading back to the Weyr, where I left her. And I plan on getting a few answers out of her. “

Max blinks at Maura’s response, goes back over what he’d said and then it registers and his laughter echoes about the quiet beast caverns because for once, his mind had actually not been in the gutter. It is now though. “Ten feet?” a wide grin breaks free, “Dang, don’t believe all those rumours you hear about me, darlin’.” That grin fades and then softens to a fond line as the bluerider lathers Renegade with sweet-talk and attention. “Ain’t nothin’ like a runner to soothe a person’s soul,” his words are delivered in a quiet and respectful tone for the creatures as a hand unfolds and lifts to run along the length of the palomino’s neck. “Got the oldest eyes in the world they have. Like they’ve seen it all before and there ain’t nothin’ you can say what’s gonna shock ‘em.” But then Maura’s answering on where trouble had found her and the ‘Zen’ leaves the man. “Igen,” he echoes as his expression tightens, “that’s them Ralkas boys’ territory,” the last muttered in an aside to himself. “You don’t go back up there without back-up, aye? Take a couple of your wingmates with you,” a brow lifting in pointed manner as to which wingmates he’s referring to. “When you find out who did this to you, I’d take it as a favour if you’d be sharin’ the information with me.” The cold light that enters his eyes, reflecting through a hard expression one might not associate with a mere beast manager.

Fortunately for Maura’s dignity, at least one of her wingmates takes it upon himself regularly to find any and every way he can to make her blush. So, that comment? Not so bad compared to a few things she’s heard of late, and she’s able to keep herself from looking too embarrassed. It’s more like an exasperated snort from the back of her throat as a response. “The weyr’s ok. You know that’s where I’m from anyway. I’d be ok there.” She protests, giving the palomino one last long look of affection before she turns her attention back to Max. “But I’m already taking Rii with me. And if something happens and he can’t go with, then P’sec will go with me. Best to bring other Igenites with me, so we stand out less.” Or the walking ego, and Max calls him, would be right up there on the list. “I.. I will. If there’s anything left of them, anyway.” Oddly, she doesn’t look away from the suddenly changed expression. It leaves her a touch curious, of course. But she’s seen that look from some of her ‘wingmates’ a time or two, and she knows it well.

“Don’t be so sure, darlin’,” Max returns with a dubious look in place for the Igen Weyr being safe, “Even a Lord’s Hold ain’t free of vermin.” Just saying. For now he seems satisfied with Maura’s logic on who would accompany her on her return back to Igen for while he considers all within the Weyr to be ‘his’ people and under his protection, he’s reluctant to interfere in ‘rider business. “Good choices,” a nod is given and then a dark smile twists onto his mouth, “Try gettin’ ‘em to talk before you draw and quarter ‘em, aye?” Renegade, feeling neglected, extends his head over the stall door and starts nosing at Maura’s side, soft lips nibbling at along the edge of her top.

“No, that’s true.” Maura agrees, rubbing her forehead for a moment like she’s trying to erase the growing ‘thud’ taking place behind her skull. “Guess I just had my rose colored glasses on… before we joined the wing.” He’ll know which wing she’s talking about, so she leaves it unsaid. “You know Rikath. He spent most of that night imagining how awesome it would be to have them both for a snack. Annoyed the shell out of Zekoith when he landed in the lake all mad and ruined the poor brown’s nice quiet lounging.” Used to the vagaries of her lifemate, the idea of him snacking on an actual person is something she finds amusing rather than disturbing. Which, in itself…? Kind of disturbing. “So I expect that if anyone is going to draw and quarter them, he’ll insist on the honors. I’ll try to hold him off long enough to get some details out of them though.” She promises, giving a startled laugh when Renegade starts nibbling on her shirt to get attention. “Just like a man. Give him a little attention and all of the sudden he’s playin’ with your shirt and giving you eyes like you owe him something.” The joke is accompanied by another round of lavished attention though, so she is apparently a sucker for the tactic. At least from runnerbeasts.

There’s a twist of an understanding smile for illusions being shattered which morphs into a chuckle, “Your boy’s only lookin’ out for you, aye? I’m sure that brown of Ch’rii’s understood well enough.” And then he’s musing aloud on the matter of Rikath having wanted to chow down on those that had harmed his rider, “Your Rikath might wanna rethink his options on eatin’ ‘em though, I figure arseholes can only taste like…well, ass.” His being a somewhat twisted sense of humour it seems. Pushing away from his lean, Max shoves his hands in his pockets and rocks back on his heels, setting Maura with a roguish grin, “Anythin’ sweet and juicy,” such as apples of course, “is gonna have us male types comin’ back for more.” With that delivered, the beast manager takes a step away, “Speakin’ of which, I got me a date with one very sweet li’l lady.” A date which includes the apple of his eye, Hope, and a bedtime story but he’ll leave the bluerider to make of that what she will.

“Of course. Rikath protects me.” Maura agrees. In her mind, that’s just… a given. Something she takes for granted. “I’ll pass that on. I’ve a feeling he’s more concerned about making a show of it then actually doing it. If he’s never followed through on his threat to shove someone off a ledge, I doubt he’s going to actually eat someone.” Tempting though both options may be at times. She gives a chuckle then, just shaking her head at both roguish grin and equally roguish comment. “Thanks for the talk, Max. I’ll let you know what I find out.” The promise delivered with a soft smile, suggesting she’s already found out enough about him to know he’s not exactly heading off for a date with some tart. She’ll just linger there for awhile, spoiling Renegade rotten and ruining his diet, until she finally tires enough to go find some food or rest.

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