Foggy Comfort

Xanadu Weyr - Garden
An arch woven from the tendrils of a willow tree stretches overhead lightly creeping with ivy as one steps in from the meadow into this sanctuary of green. Cool gray flagstone carefully spaced enables a soft velvety moss to thrive within the cracks, and creates a single wide pathway that fluidly breaks off into two paths of stone once free of the natural arbor. It is a wonder this place, and meticulously tended from the way it seems not a single leaf is out of place. On either side of the main path expansive grassy patches are trimmed short and edged behind with natural tan colored stone selectively chosen to stack just right. Beyond these are a line of fine puffed shrubberies in vibrant green intermingled with flowering bushes of brilliant pinks varying in hue from the very light to the very dark, which causes the occasional snowy white blossoms of other scattered here and there without worry to simply pop out of the scenery.
Directly in the center of the garden is another wall of intricately stacked stone, this of muted grays, creating what from the air would prove to be a perfect circle. It's been set high for safety, but not so much as one would not be able to lean over it to admire what lies beyond, either standing or sitting at the smattering of benches whose backs are set every four feet along it. Flush to the ground inside it's protective stone outcropping, is an enormous twenty foot wide fish pond. Within one can glean the metallic glint of playful goldfish, the unhurried cruise of fat koi, and even a frog or three among pale yellow and white flowering water lilies and their thick green pads.
The trees surrounding the entire garden were planted to give the impression that they had always been here, not only lending to a rustic look, but also eluding to the beauty that can be found among the wilds if only one might just look for it. Species vary from the ordinary Birch and Pine, but the flaming red capsules of the Indian Shot to the robust orange spokes of the Firewheel tree suggest the spice of the exotic. The two paths leading away from the entrance have come full circle, wrapping around to meet each other on the other side, yet still continue on to the far left and right. One path leads off deeper into the surrounding woods, while the other wider; cheerily decorated with brightly colored slabs of painted stones.

The early morning fog curls smoky tendrils through the gardens, caressing dew-dappled leaves and giving a drink to thirsty flowers. Through this, along the flagstone pathway walks a boy, dressed in loose brown trousers and a rich violet tunic. Wavy brown hair is pushed away from his face as he moves, soft and quiet among the plants, the basket over one arm suggesting he's here for more than just a pretty stroll.

Tazemi isn't here for more than just a pretty stroll. Or at least that's the way it looks to be. That newly hatched brown firelizard of his is nowhere to be seen at the moment, and Taz is just strolling along with no real purpose to his step. It's an odd morning to be taking that stroll with the fog around, but then again Taz seems a little odd in the head. But Taz does see one figure at least moving through the fog, and muddy-green eyes squint, trying to see if he knows who it is.

Out in the early morning fog, there are various shapes. Some of them are even moving, which probably means they aren't trees. The one that is Soriana isn't moving much; she's sitting on the wall around the pond, her legs dangling over the edge as she stares at the surface of the water for the occasional ripples of fish bobbing to the surface.

Muir pauses, peering through the fog as the boy realizes he's not alone. Surely he didn't think he'd have the whole gardens to himself? Clearing his throat softly, he steps off the path, feet sinking a little bit into the soft earth before he crouches down, pulling some shears from the basket. Snip, snip, "OW!"

Tazemi ponders just walking on and leaving the shapes in the fog. But something about that just doesn't seem right to the teenager today, and instead he's moving towards Muir's shape in the fog, footsteps pausing when he hears the exclamation. "You okay?" He asks, raising his voice just a touch. Soriana's shape is noted as a shape in the distance, but she isn't saying anything.

Did Soriana hear something? She tilts her head a little at the throat-clearing noise, but… eh, it was probably nothing. A squirrel. But, squirrels don't say ow, or if they do, they don't have nearly so good diction. And then there's Tazemi, saying entire words. Sori puts a hand on the wall, turning herself around to hop down off it and head toward the source of the voices.

Muir holds up his hand and sticks his finger into his mouth, staring with a frown at the offending bush which, apparently, did not appreciate parts of it being chopped off. "Yeah," he says around his finger when Tazemi approaches. "Just got stuck by one of these thorns." Pulling his finger from his mouth he examines the puncture, which still wells up blood. Back into his mouth it goes.

Tazemi is close enough now where he can see Muir clearly without the fog distorting anything. Not that the fog is THAT thick, but thick enough. "Those tend to hide. Even on clear mornings." Taz offers as his eyes slowly scan around. The spot where he had seen Sori's form is blank, but oh-there she'd be. Or it, as runs through his mind at the moment.

Definitely not squirrels. Soriana lifts a hand in something like a wave as she continues on toward them. "Heya." Luking fogbeast becomes: A Soriana! She repeats the wave, in case they didn't see it the first time, then looks to Muir now that she can actually see him. "Heard you were back," she says to the younger boy with a slight nod, then glances away, looking for the offending bush.

Muir nods, grumbling a bit at the bush. And then with a frown and vindictive *snip*, he takes that bloom he wanted before the bush stabbed him. HA. Take that, stupid plant. The bloom is carefully placed into the basket before he starts searching for another, and glancing up at Soriana. "Oh, hi, Soriana. Yeah, we're back…been back a sevenday or so, now. How've you been?" Brown eyes flick to Tazemi, staring for a moment before he straightens. "I'm Muir."

Back long enough for even Tazemi to see Muir display some temper in the caverns a day or so ago. Muir gets a nod from from Taz. "And I'm Tazemi." Taz might seem vaguely familiar to Muir, since both of them were raised in the Weyr and are roughly around the same age…ish. And Soriana gets a brief wave of the hand in greeting from Taz.

It's the ishes that get you. Even a turn of difference can be huge when you've only got a handful of them. Soriana can't help but smile a little at Muir's victory over the plant. Sometimes, even a small victory is… well. She nods to Muir's reply, then shrugs. "Well enough," she says, though there's a frown tugging at her lips that doesn't quite match that answer. She's quick enough to move on, gesturing to the basket with one hand. "Who're they for?"

Muir studies Tazemi for a long moment, a glimmer of recognition briefly in his gaze. "Right, yeah. Nice to see you." Meet you. His brown eyes shift to study Soriana for a long moment, and a ghost of a smile touches his lips before he clears his throat and steps over to another plant to cut off a few other buds. "Mom," he says. "Every lady deserves flowers, right?" Cutting another bloom, he clips the leaves from it before offering it to Soriana with a crooked little grin.

Too bad Tazemi isn't a lady. Maybe he'd like a flower too! … Right. But Taz watches Muir snip a few other buds and handing one of them to Sori. Muir must be more woman-savvy than the quiet handyman. "Are we supposed to be cutting flowers from the gardens?" Right. And now Taz is going there? Party pooper.

The ghost of a smile is returned by the fractional tilt of a head, and then Soriana nods. "She does, at least," is her answer. And that might be that, except there's a flower being offered to her now. She arches one brow at it, a teasing smile alighting on her lips. "Why, Muir, are you calling me a lady?" Admittedly, she's turned a bit less ragamuffin these past turns, but she's still got dirt on the butt of her pants and a spot on the corner of her shirt that looks chewed-on. That said, she reaches out to accept the flower, turning it slowly in her fingers before leaning down to take a sniff. That's what one does with flowers, isn't it? That and cut them from gardens… with or without permission.

Muir clears his throat, glancing around. "I don't know," he admits. "But it's just a few, I'm sure it's not a bad thing, right? Plus they're for the Weyrwoman." That makes everything okay! Muir gives Tazemi what he thinks is a charming smile, and then looks back at Soriana. And the boy looks mock offended. "Why of course I am!" Ragamuffin or not, she's still a girl. Thus, has Muir's attention.

The look Muir gets in response from Tazemi is a bit hard to read, but one might call it dubious. Either way, Taz eventually shrugs his shoulders. "Your ma's the Weyrwoman." And that seems to be enough of an explanation right there for the lad. Soriana gets a brief sideways glance from Taz and after a moment he cocks his head, as if either confused or curious. "Wouldn't you call yourself a lady?" After all, she IS female. And thus, a lady.

"Perhaps you're right," acknowledges Soriana, her smile growing slightly. She glances to Tazemi, and arches a brow. "Don't ladies have to be ladylike?" she asks. "I'm rather bad at that part of things." The smile is fading a little, drifting toward pensive as she gives the flower another quarter-turn between her fingers.

Muir nods at Tazemi, "Yeah, she is." So it's all good, yes? No one's going to tell on him? The boy drifts off to trim some green fronds to add to his basket bouquet. "Ladies don't always have to be ladylike," Muir says with confidence. "I think you're a lady." Then he's peering at her through the fog, a crease growing between his brows. "Everything okay, Anna?"

Tazemi's lips pucker off to one side in thought, and he scratches at his cheek to complete the gesture. "Naw." Finally comes the answer from Tazemi after about a minute's worth of thought. "I'd like a lady who could do a day's work rather than one who's too… too… PRISSY to do anything else but look and act pretty." Prissy? Right. Seems like both Muir and Taz have Sori's back in this case. And when Muir brings up the question, Taz is taking a closer look, but waiting for the lady's answer rather than putting anything else of his own in there. Quiet Taz.

Her smile recovers a little at Muir's answer, and as Tazemi joins in, there's an actual laugh from Soriana. "One of these days, I will wear a dress. I'm sure Darsce would help." Help? More like take over in a whirlwind of priss. At the question, she glances down to the bloom, turning it again and watching the twirling… "I still miss him, that's all," she says. Him? "There's too many reminders of Kale." Him. One side of her mouth quirks. "Sometimes I think everything's a reminder, I just don't recognize some of them."

Muir snorts, grinning crookedly. "Yeah, I'm sure she would help, and she'd /love/ it," he says, knowing his older sister rather well. Then he blinks in surprise, glancing at Tazemi and then back to Soriana. "Kale? Where'd he go? I saw him just the other day…" The boy's heart gives a little lurch. "Did he die?"

Tazemi just manages to look a little lost for a moment. Right, the great socializer here. "Darsce? Kale?" Who, what, where, when, why? Neither of those people sound as familiar to Taz as Muir did off the bat. And Kale is just a name in the dark for the lad.

Soriana is quick to shake her head. "No, no, he's fine." Which is why she's sighing, and after the quick glance up for reassurance, her gaze is going back to the flower. "We broke up. It was… both of us, I guess." She frowns, expression uncertain, then glances up again, this time to Tazemi. "Kale's a smither." And, apparently, Sori's ex. "Darsce is… Darsce." Really, what more can you say about her? She's very Darsce.

Muir nods at Tazemi. "Darsce is my half sister. You've probably seen her. Uh. Blonde. Really pretty." /Really/ pretty. Enough to make the boy squirm a bit, because she's his /sister/. Then he looks back to Soriana, and her frowns. "Aww, I'm sorry Anna. You doin' okay?" Need a hug? The young boy scoots over closer to her, basket and bouquet forgotten for the moment. There's a lady needs comforting!

There's a random sniff that comes from Tazemi as he thinks for another long moment. "You're right. I probably have seen her." And maybe oogled, but didn't he say that he wanted a lady who could actually work and not just look pretty? Anyways, it's pretty apparent even from the current situation he isn't a great lady charmer. Mister oh-so-NOT-sauve here. "I'm uh sorry you broke up?" And yes, that does manage to come out as a question instead of sympathies. And there's this little awkward foot shuffle as he sticks his hands into his pockets.

"So am I," says Soriana to Tazemi, and then she quirks her lips, because being okay… well, that depends on what you mean by okay, doesn't it? She looks up from her flower again to Muir, and reaches out with one arm. The other's holding the flower, and she wouldn't want to drop it or lose her carefully-constructed cool… but she would indeed like a hug. "Better than I was," she tells Muir. Because of his company? Maybe. Then again, maybe it's just because of the sevendays passing.

Muir glances to Tazemi and gives him a nod. "She's hard to miss," he says with a faint grin, before he's looking back at Soriana in surprise. Wow, she really does want a hug? He's happy to oblige, setting the basket down and stepping forward to sweep Soriana into a close embrace. He doesn't skimp on the hugs, it seems! He keeps his hands in respectable places at least, on her back and then one up to her shoulders to rub there gently. And he'll only let go when he feels her start to shift away. "Sorry you broke up," he says, echoing Tazemi's words - they were good ones!

Are we sure Tazemi was brought up in a weyr? When Muir envelopes Sori in that hug, the older teenager actually averts his eyes and head, looking up at the morning's sky and then the surrounding trees. Yeah, that's TOTALLY interesting stuff there. Although in all fairness, watching fog can be somewhat memorizing. Whoo! Cue feeling like a weird third wheel.

Hugs are good, even if they do make little cracks in the illusion that everything is okay. Soriana's arm goes around Muir, and the other one even comes in a bit to half-wrap around him, and so long as everyone's willing to ignore the slight shine of moisture in her eyes… yeah. At least Tazemi's definitely not noticing it, busy as he is with watching the fog. She keeps the hug up for several long moments, because as it turns out, Muir is good at this hugging thing, and she sees nothing at all wrong with hugs. Finally, she takes a deep breath, lets it out, squeezes her arm around him tighter for a moment, then unwraps it and leans back to disengage. Her gaze darts to Tazemi, studiously looking away, and she looks rueful. "Sorry," she says, and glances to Muir while she's at it. "I don't mean to be so mopey. Maybe I should just… talk to him." Maybe it'd be easier if she could be mad at him.

Muir is totally focused on the hug, because…it's a hug! From a girl that isn't his sister or his mother. So he's a happy teen. Squeezing Soriana back, the boy lets her go and steps back, and if he notices the shine to her eyes he respectfully keeps quiet about it. "Might help," he says with a little nod. Glancing at Tazemi, the boy grins crookedly and reaches over to try and give the other kid a nudge. "Still with us? And hey," to Soriana, "don't apologize."

"Sorry?" Tazemi repeats, finally letting his gaze drift back to the people around, and stumbling a step as Muir's nudge catches him off guard. And then Taz is speaking right ontop of Muir. "Naw, no need to be." And that's when Taz gives Muir a bit of a sideways look and a half smile. At least the two seem to be on the same wavelength as far as what to say. And he's doing his best to not notice any additional moisture in Sori's eyes still. "Don't be putting yourself in any awkward positions." This time Taz is scratching at the back of his neck. "People're allowed to be… mopey… after breaking up." Experience or just wise?

Talking may indeed help. Maybe she'll even manage to do it before next Turnover. Maybe. Soriana glances back to Tazemi, and as both boys tell her not to be sorry, that brings a smile to her face as she looks between them. Maybe it's not the words that make the charm, just the delivery… or the self-confidence. That could be it, too. "Maybe it'll get the sorry for myself out. Like a purge." Thank you, dragonhealing classes, for that lovely description. Ladylike, here she comes. She nods to Tazemi, and hehs. "It's in the rules, huh?" she asks, then glances back to Muir as she adds a, "Thanks," meant for both of them.

Muir nods a bit at Tazemi, and then shrugs. "I wouldn't know." Never broken up before? "Do whatever /you/ want to do," he offers, bending to pick up his basket again as the sun rises and burns off more fog, and things become more visible and less cloaked in mystery. "Whatever's gonna make you feel less mopey."

"Totally is." Tazemi confirms for Soriana. Those unwritten rules, y'know. It's completely possible his break up was one sided. The entire 'relationship'. Or he's just making things up. And then the handyman is rolling his shoulders, just to loosen things up. "What he said, though. Whatever feels right." And he's shifting his feet again, just for the sake of shifting it appears like.

The unwritten rules of romance. Passed down, turn after turn… why, they're practically hallowed tradition, for all that each generation has to rediscover them on their own. And… the boys are agreeing again. Soriana smiles a little. "Yeah." She pauses, then adds, "I'll try, anyhow." Figuring out what she wants is easier said than done, sometimes. She gives the flower in her hand another glance, another little bit of a smile, then glances to the rising sun. "Is it really morning already? I'd just finished my shift, and then…"

Muir glances up and nods, "Yeah, it is," he answers Soriana. "You been up all night?" he asks next with a small frown, glancing at Tazemi next. "You broke up too?"

Tazemi is just simply not going to answer that question. He averts his eyes again, watching as the fog starts to disapate. "It's just about breakfast time isn't it?" Yes, that's a complete change of subject. "I could do with something to eat." He's a boy. He could always do with something to eat.

"I had the late shift again," says Soriana. "They make all of us rotate through. It was a pretty boring one, though. I got some studying done." So, yes, she was up all night, but she wasn't moping. At least, she mostly wasn't moping. Some of it probably snuck in, here and there. She looks to Tazemi with a questioning tilt of her head, but there's no answer there. Just another question, and she nods to it. "Probably."

Muir glances towards his basket and then the exit. "Are you hungry?" he asks Soriana. "Maybe we could go grab some breakfast? I've got to finish up this bouquet, but then I'll be in? Mom's probably busy right now anyway."

Tazemi is turning around, to start heading back the way he came, but he's looking over his shoulder. "C'mon. Food always helps, too." He offers to Soriana, nodding at Muir. Taz isn't walking off just yet. He's waiting to see if he's going to be having any table company, or if he gets to snag a chair and be all comfy-like while eating.

A quick check of the internal state of the her, and Soriana nods. "Yeah, I could eat something." She smiles, then nods to Muir. "Probably," she agrees again. Weyrwomen have this tendency to be busy. "Maybe you should add a couple sweetrolls and some klah." Weyrwomen also have this tendency to forget to eat. Soriana glances down at her flower again, and smiles. "I should put this in some water first."

Muir looks down at his basket and then at Soriana, and the boy grins. "That's a great idea. You two go ahead, I'll catch up. Have a few more flowers to get."

Soriana smiles, and nods to Muir. "See you there," she says, and gives a vague thing somewhere between a wave and a salute that the weyrbrats tend to pick up. Then, she's headed off with Tazemi, only then she's veering off to put that flower in a vase and sending him on ahead to secure a table.

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