Useless Dragon(rider)

Xanadu Weyr - Dragonhealer's Annex
An entranceway which would allow admittance to even the greatest of queen dragons leads from the clearing into a chamber which would house half-a-dozen of the same size. There's a smaller human-sized door near it, and the massive dragon-sized door is equipped with a clever set of counterweights to permit one person to open it when needed.
Just to one side of the door, a shallow pool has a constant gentle flow of water, pumped and filtered to be used in washing wounds. Nearby, stone shelves hold a generous supply of clean bandages and sheets, as well as redwort, numbweed, and the metal implements used for surgery. The other side of the chamber is taken up by an alcove with multiple banks of computers to house medical records and help to diagnose illness and injury in the Dragons who come for aid. Within this alcove is a small medical laboratory where medicines and herbs can be prepared and experiments can take place.
The far wall houses two dozen dragon-couches. A thick curtain can be drawn around each along a rail mounted in the ceiling to allow patients the option of privacy as they rest and recover, and there are chairs set beside them for anxious riders to sit and comfort their lifemates.
One of those couches, off in the corner, has been replaced with a large metal box. This curtain is usually kept drawn, but behind it is the artificial incubator, filled with sand from the main hatching arena. It's as wide as a human is tall, and perhaps thrice as long. Riveted sides rise halfway up the shin and are lined with wires of various hues that fuel each of the miniature units used to heat the artificial sands. Each cord has been secured to the side of the box, effectively keeping it out of the range of passersby.

Kalsuoth continues to heal, but it's slow, slow going and the Dragonhealers still don't know if he'll ever fly again. Mur'dah has been putting on a good front but in reality, he's getting more and more nervous and stressed about his dragon's condition. Worrying…will they ever fly together again? It's worse when the dragon is asleep, and Mur'dah doesn't have to be strong for him. Right now, as Kalsuoth rests, Mur'dah paces in the complex, shaking his head and clasping his hands.

And as much as Kiena promised to be by his side the reality of the situation is… she can't. Not by her choice but she does have work to do and other matters to oversee. Today she had sweeps in the morning and a brief moment with Mur'dah before she had to go to her shifts in the forge. With her Journeyman status still in the balance, the bluerider is trying not to slide too far behind. So it's a hasty trip to the baths when she's done and then she's coming by to the complex, clean skinned at least but still smelling of metal and chemicals. Lovely? "Mur'dah?" Kiena calls softly and frowns when she finds him pacing. "Hey. Sorry I've been gone most of the day. You alright?"

Mur'dah looks up, offering a faint smile and reaching a hand towards her. "It's okay, it's fine, I know you've got to work." He knows, he understands. "I'm okay. He's just…" Not flying yet. "It's a long process and I'm stuck here."

Kiena reaches out without hesitation and takes his hand, squeezing hard. She gives him a lingering look though as if trying to decide whether or not she wants to believe him. "I can't even imagine what it's like…" she murmurs, lifting her other hand to gently brush back some of his hair and then gently cup his cheek in a rare form of tender affection. "Is he resting now? Have you left this complex at all?"

Mur'dah sighs, leaning his head into her hand and closing his eyes. "He's resting, he's comfortable right now. And no, where would I go? What would I do? I'm a grounded dragonrider. Useless."

"Mur'dah!" Kiena chides and grips both his shoulders, tilting her head to look up at him with a stern expression. "Don't say things like that! You are not useless or the first dragon rider to be grounded from injuries! Jays, you've a purpose! I'm sure they could find something for you to do, even if just around the Infirmary here. So you're not just sitting idle…"

Mur'dah sighs again, shaking his head. "I don't know how to /do/ anything except transport. Without my…transport, I'm useless." Look who is feeling all sorry for himself. Poor Kiena.

Kiena looks tempted to smack him upside the head but she'd never do something like that, right? Pfft. Of course she would and she does! A gentle (and loving) smack to the side of the head and a good shake to the shoulders too. "Mur'dah, snap out of it! You are not useless. Folks always need stuff transported and while you can't fly outside of Xanadu with cargo, last I checked your legs and arms work fine. Do some courier work within the Weyr proper while Kalsuoth rests!"

Mur'dah ducks his head and gives her a /look/ when she smacks him. "I can't leave him," he mutters, looking down, looking away. He takes a slow, tremulous breath and swallows thickly.

Kiena stares him right back. Yeah, that's right! She smacked him. Her hands rest on her hips and she looks as stubborn as he is. Even when he looks away and is clearly upset. "Yes, you can. Just for a little bit and for your health, Mur'dah. It's hard, I know but you can't do this to yourself. It's not fair to Kalsuoth…"

Mur'dah shifts his weight a bit, shrugging, and then he sighs. "Maybe tomorrow, I don't know. We'll see." It's hard to stay here but it's even harder to leave. "How was your day? Smiths glad to see you back?"

"Not tomorrow. Right now," Kiena tells him and holds out her hand to him. "Not far, but at least out of here. Have you even been bathing?" she drawls, giving him a level look. No lying! She shakes her head, "I'll tell you about my day while we have a little walk."

Mur'dah smirks a bit at that. "Smell me and find out." So…no. He hesitates though, even when he takes her hand. "I…we won't go far?" he asks, looking back at his sleeping lifemate. "Promise?"

Kiena wrinkles her nose and snorts, "No thanks. I'll take that as a no!" Which means she'll probably try coaxing him to the bathing caverns or, at the very least, having some drudges bring in a wash basin. Something to fix Mur'dah's continuing ripeness. She'll hold his hand firmly and give him a vague but reassuring smile. "Not far at all. Just outside the complex. Some fresh air and a little walk around the clearing. Okay?"

Mur'dah finally nods after another hesitation, and gives her hand a squeeze. "Thanks for being patient with me…"

Kiena patiently begins to lead Mur’dah out of the complex, going slow and pausing if he hesitates too much or for too long. “I care about you and worry about you. Of course I’d be patient…” To certain limits! Once they step outside, she’ll stop just short of the entranceway and glance slidelong to him. How’s he holding up?

Mur’dah stops when they reach the exit, turning to look back in at his dragon with a soft exhale of breath. “This is the worst thing ever,” he whispers. Then he quicky amends, “Well, not the worst thing, but this…having him hurt, and hurting, and not /with/ me…” It’s very hard on him.

“I think it ranks pretty high among ‘worst things’, Mur’dah.” Kiena mutters softly, turning to look back into the complex as well. Her hand lets go of his but only so she can reach around and rest it against the small of his back. She looks back to him, looking up with a slightly worried frown. Maybe she’s beginning to see the wear on him? “He’ll not be hurting as much as he mends… and as he mends, he’ll be awake more often. Hang in there, alright?”

Mur’dah leans a bit against her hand, exhaling softly. “He’s not himself right now. He’s sleeping, or when he’s awake, he’s hiding in his forest, he’s hurting or dazed or drugged…it’s not /him/…”

Kiena gently coaxes him into walking… or at least tries. Maybe if he’s talking it’ll be enough of a distraction? As promised, she doesn’t take him far. Just a few more steps forwards and enough to the side to keep them out of the way of main traffic. “I didn’t know,” she murmurs quietly. “Have you tried to call him out of hiding? So he isn’t so withdrawn?”

Mur’dah takes a few steps forward, glancing over his shoulder again. “Of course,” he answers, brows furrowed. “But he won’t. He’s just…in there. For now. It’s hard for him to deal with too, you know. Not just the pain but he has some understanding of the future and that he might not be able to fly again…”

“But what if he will be able to? We’ve seen plenty of injured dragons before with worse injuries that were still capable of flight…” Kiena explains softly as she leads him further away from the complex. Not far, but they’re reaching the midway point now. “He’ll need you for support and confidence, Mur’dah. It’s good that you’re keeping all options open but you shouldn’t give up on his recovering flight quite yet.”

Mur’dah nods, shuffling along after her. “I know. I know he might be able to but he might /not/ be able to and that’s something we have to think about…” He nods. “I know, I know. I am there for him when he’s awake. But when he’s sleeping…” That’s when Mur’dah struggles the most. “I haven’t given up,” he says firmly. “It’s just…we don’t /know/ anything yet.”

“Do you have any idea when the Dragonhealers may have news or at least a better guess?” Kiena asks softly as they walk towards the far end of the clearing in front of the complex. He’ll still be able to see the entranceway but they’ve got distance between it now. She’ll find them a makeshift bench of sorts to sit on, settling down beside him close and cozy like.

Mur’dah shakes his head. “No. Not that they’ve told me at least. I don’t…I don’t /think/ they’re just stalling because it’s bad news.” They’d better not be. He follows after, sitting heavily and wrapping an arm tightly around her shoulders.

Kiena shakes her head, “I don’t think they’d string you along, Mur’dah. They’re probably waiting to be certain before they say something and it turns out false. If that makes sense? No news is good news…” She will lean against him and slip her arm around him in return. “I wish there was more that could be said though or more done to put both of you at ease.”

Mur’dah nods. “Yeah, that’s what I think they’re doing.” He rests his head against the top of hers and exhales. “It’s fine. There’s not, we just have to push through it and keep our hopes up…”

Kiena smiles faintly when he rests his head over hers and she hugs him gently. Awkwardly, given the angle she is at but a hug is a hug, right? “That sounds more like the Mur’dah I know and love.” she murmurs and reaches for his hand again. Not to lead him or pull him to his feet but to gently hold. “I bet you’ll both pull through from this.”

Mur’dah smiles, faintly, but it’s a smile. “Thanks,” he says quietly. “We don’t have a choice, right? We have to keep moving forward, no matter what. For us, for you, for the kids…”

“You always have choice,” Kiena admits with a crooked smirk. “It’s just a matter of choosing the right one. I’d know… since I’d often chose the wrong one thinking it was the only way.” Sitting up, she’ll continue to lean against him. “Moving forwards is good but nothing says you or Kalsuoth have to rush into it. Y’know? So we take it slow. The girls miss you. So does Thien. If this takes more time, I’ll have them brought here. Would you like that?” She hasn’t done that already?

Mur’dah tilts his head with a slight frown. “I think we should. It’ll be months, at least, before he’s ready to fly back to Ierne…I should just rent out our house there, or something…”

“One thing at a time, Mur’dah. Don’t need to be hasty. Our house can wait or… if you think it’ll be worth getting the added marks then we’ll consider it.” Kiena murmurs as she settles both their hands, fingers twined now, against her thigh. Her eyes have lowered towards them, but it’s more in thought than anything else. “We’ll bring the children here first. I could see to that for tonight even? Ellie and Ezzie will be so happy…”

Mur’dah sighs. “I have to think about it, Kiena. We’re not making much right now, we can’t just be throwing marks away. We’re going to have to pay the weyr, the healers somehow…” Then he smiles again, faintly. “Tonight. I miss them.”

Kiena frowns, “We’re not exactly throwing marks away either…” she mutters with a grimace. “And I’m paying back some of the debt by working in the forges for them. Do you see a Xanadian knot on my shoulder?” For effect she’ll point to it and the fact that no knot rests there. Nope, she’s not considering settling in the Weyr again — at least not long term. “Tonight then. Will Kalsuoth wake soon, do you think? I may fetch them then, while you tend to him.” As it’s usually a fairly private moment, right?

Mur’dah gives her shoulder a tight squeeze. “Thank you, sweetheart,” he murmurs. There’s a nod, and a head toss to clear hair away from his forehead. “Hard to tell, but when he wakes you could go…”

Kiena smiles as she leans into his hand and when he tosses his hair like that she cannot resist and reaches up… to ruffle it right back into place. Ruffle, ruffle! She’ll grin too, knowing it’s likely to bug him. “We’ll play it by ear. When’s the last time you ate?”

Mur’dah smiles a bit at her ruffling, but he doesn’t move away from her touch. “Uh. This morning I think?” He has a vague memory of food, between pacing and caring for Kalsuoth.

Kiena will gently cup his cheek when he doesn’t pull away and then rests her hand against his arm again. “Think you can make a short trip with me to the caverns, then? It’s not far…” she murmurs and tries to gently persuade him further.

Mur’dah looks up, and then back to the entrance to the dragonhealer complex. He shifts, biting his lower lip a bit. “I guess,” he mutters. ‘But I don’t feel like seeing anyone…”

“Then we don’t have to. We’ll get the food to go and come back here, where we’re sitting now and eat. How’s that?” Kiena offers as a compromise, understanding full well how it feels not wanting to be in the public eye.

Mur’dah nods, briefly resting his head on her shoulder before standing. “That sounds like a good plan.” Then he’s close to Kalsuoth, and he doesn’t have to talk to people.

Kiena tilts her head to nuzzle him and gently kiss his hair, divulging again in a rare show of tender affection when she’s usually so gruff and harsh. “Perfect,” she murmurs and will stand as well, offering him her hand. “Come on. I know a secret shortcut… well, sort of secret. Just not as commonly used. It’ll get us in and back out and hopefully not harrassed.” Off she goes, leading the way unless Mur’dah puts on the breaks. “Y’know? Never thought I’d see the day when you’d not want to be the social one and I did. It’s strange.”

Mur’dah walks along with her, not letting her hand go. “Oh really?” he’ll ask, curious if she knows something about Xanadu that he doesn’t. Then, a chuckle. “It’s a switch for sure,” he agrees, voice soft. ‘But I think it’s warranted. You’ve opened up a lot…”

“Hey, when you’re Weyrsecond you have to figure out quick ways of getting from point A to point B…” Kiena informs him with a crooked smile and for once the bluerider can joke about her previous rank and position without the disappointment and guilt that usually lurks in her tone. She’ll lead him along the little side path and up to the caverns. If anyone is met along the way, they get a brisk but friendly nod before she’s ushering past them. “Have I?” she muses, heading straight for the serving tables.

“Do you miss it?” Mur’dah asks, walking behind her with his head down, avoiding eye contact with any sympathizers. They get the message and move on. “You have. You’re much more open, willing to talk to people…”

Kiena blinks and looks at him over her shoulder and a bit sharply at that too. “… of course I do.” Why would he even ask that? He knows how much it meant to her and how it affected her to have to lose it and how it was lost. She shakes her head and smirks, “Guess I have. Maybe I grew up a little or just stopped caring what others think.” Shrugging her shoulders, she’ll start filling a little take-away basket with a bit of everything. Apparently her appetite hasn’t changed much either.

Mur’dah hangs back and watches her gather their food, dipping his head down at her sharp reply. “Sorry,” he murmurs. “I know this can’t be easy for you either, sweetheart…”

Kiena gathers them quite a feast of finger foods and other easy-to-eat goodies but seeing him dipping his head down like that has her softening her tone and expression. “It’s alright. Really, I should just let it go already… and focus on what’s important.” Smiling, she jerks her head from where they came in. “Let’s get back so we can eat.” And out of prying eyes and ears.

Mur’dah reaches for the basket, wanting to carry it back for them. “Lead on,” he says quietly.

Kiena happily hands it over and gives him a grateful look. “Come on, then.” she murmurs and takes his hand. Taking the lead, she’ll walk at a pace that’s quick but not so much so that they’ll draw attention to themselves. Once they’re back, she’ll sit back on their previous spot. “See? Not so bad.”

Mur’dah follows, and then once he sits he puts the basket on his lap and opens it, giving her first pick of whatever she brought back with them. “Not so bad,” he agrees, looking towards the entrance, within which Kalsuoth still sleeps. “I think tomorrow I’ll ask about doing some work around here. Now that he’s settled a bit, and there’s some routine…”

Kiena will pick up one of the meat rolls to start, nibbling on it and smiling around the food when he agrees with her. “Having something to do will help. Believe me… Being idle all the time just gives you too much time to think and while that’s not always a bad thing, sometimes it does more damage than good.” she points out gently.

Mur’dah nods. “You’re right, of course, I just…had to get to a point where I could leave him without feeling…guilty about it. So, tomorrow. I’ll find something to do.”

Kiena grimaces faintly, “I know. Don’t beat yourself up about it. It’s not easy… but it’ll get a bit easier if you fill up all that empty time with something. No matter how small,” she murmurs and then gestures to the basket of food. “Eat, lover. That’ll help too.”

Mur’dah nods again. “I know…” he says, glancing at her. Yes. He knows. He gets it. He’ll eat then, too, with his usual appetite. Good sign.

A very good sign and Kiena smiles when she notices it. She’ll help herself to that basket of goodies too when he’s not chowing down, leaning comfortably against his side. “I love you, Mur’dah. We’ll get through this…”

Mur’dah leans back, and then leans over to kiss her forehead softly. “I love you too, Kiena. And we will. We will…as long as I have you, it’ll all be okay.”

“I’m not going anywhere,” Kiena murmurs with a reassuring grin. “It’ll take a lot more to get rid of me.” Teasing, she’ll finish off the last meat roll and brushing off her hands of any crumbs. “Starting to feel a little more human, at least?”

Mur’dah chuckles. “I hope that never happens.” He kisses her hair again and nods. “Just a bit,” he says with another smile, which swiftly changes as his head turns towards the complex. “He’s waking up,” he murmurs, pushing to his feet and setting the basket aside.

Kiena chuckles as well, “It won’t.” she murmurs and she can feel the change in him, instantly sitting up as he pushes to his feet. “Go to him and comfort him as best you can. I’ll go get the girls and Thien and I’ll keep in touch through Ujinath…” Since she won’t want the girls to be harassing him while he’s with Kalsuoth.

Mur’dah nods, bending to cup her cheek and kiss her, swift but firm. “I love you,” he whispers. “Thank you.” And with that, he’s jogging into the dragonhealing complex to tend to his groggy lifemate.

“I love you too. Tell him we give him our regards,” Kiena tells him hastily and will wait until he’s disappeared back into the complex. Only then does she call for Ujinath, mounting up when the blue lands and buckling in. “To Ierne, Ujinath. Yes, I know…” she says automatically when the blue rumbles in a hesitant and curious way. Yes, she will have to time it. Just a little bit! So that she’s not arriving too late or far too early to gather up their children. Mur’dah and Kalsuoth never need know!

Dun dun DUN.

Mur’dah stays with Kalsuoth while the Healers change his bandages and continue to assess his wing injury. Then, as the brown drifts to sleep, Mur’dah finds a spot to sit and help roll bandages and other materials for dragonhealing. Anything to help out and keep busy.

Kiena won’t be gone long — at least by Mur’dah’s perspective. For her it’s double time because of that little secret trick and as Ujinath lands, she’ll keep Keruthien with her while the girls dismount and start to tear off towards the complex. “Girls! Go calm and quiet, alright?” she calls to them, which earns her a quick and enthusiastic wave as Ezzie and Ellie continue on their way with barely a pause in their steps. It’ll be the braver Ezzie though who sticks her head around the entranceway and calls softly, “Mur’dah?”

Mur’dah looks up and his smile is instant. He loves these girls, and he glances briefly to the sleeping Kalsuoth before gesturing a hand towards the twins. “Girls. I’ve missed you…” Come give him a hug?

Can he have a hug? OF COURSE! The moment Mur’dah acknowledges them is like an instant invitation and Ezzie makes a delighted sound close to a subdued squeal and she darts forwards, with her quieter sister Ellie following on her heels. So the brownrider will end up with one girl hugging one side of him and the next on the other, arms looped around his shoulders. “We’ve missed you too, Mur’dah!” Ezzie admits, while Ellie is soft spoken in her greetings. “Is Kalsuoth okay?”

Mur’dah hugs both girls tightly, taking a deep breath and smiling. It falters a bit and he looks at the brown. “He’ll live,” that’s important, “but the Healers don’t know yet how much flying he’ll be able to do.”

Both girls hug him back tightly until they tire of it and both slide back down to their feet. Ellie looks chagrined for bringing it up, but Ezzie is far less… tactful. Because she’s wandered off to go peer at Kalsuoth’s bandaged wing. Not close enough to touch but… close. “He’s young, isn’t he? Mother says dragons tend to be very… uh…” She’s looking for the word ‘resilient’ but doesn’t know it yet. “… tough!” That’ll do. “Kalsuoth’s tough, right?” Ezzie asks, peering back at Mur’dah, who has Ellie clinging to his side now.

Mur’dah will happily hug whatever girl wants hugs. “He’s young, yes,” Mur’dah agrees. “And he’s tough. But it was a bad injury, so. The Healers don’t know yet. So how are you guys doing? What do you think of maybe coming back to Xanadu for a while?” Kiena told them about that, right?

Then Mur’dah will totally have Ellie has his personal child-sized barnacle. At least she doesn’t cling? She just hovers there and occasionally hugs or leans in close, her eyes watching her more boisterous sibling. “I think he’ll be just fine!” Ezzie boasts with enough confidence to cover all of them. “People break bones all the time and recover so he will too!” Finer concepts… go right over her head. “We’re good. We’re in lessons mostly now and Ellie is totally the Harper’s pet,” Ezzie teases, much to her sister’s whined complaint of ‘I’m not!’. “Come back?” Both girls peer up at him. Uh, no… looks like Kiena hadn’t breathed a word. “For real? ALL of us? Not just ‘Thien?”

Whoops. Sorry, Kiena? Mur’dah looks at Kalsuoth again. “Maybe. Your mom and I were talking about it, but I don’t know what she wants to do. But. It’ll be months before Kalsuoth can fly again.” If he can. He doesn’t say that. “So we were talking about moving all the kids back here until he’s better.”

The news would have to be given at some point! Better now than never? “I’d LOVE to come back!” Ezzie exclaims and then claps her hands over her mouth, knowing she was far too loud. Her eyes dart to Kalsuoth, then to Mur’dah. Did she wake him? Is she in trouble? Ellie just chimes in with a bright smile. “I want to too. Ierne was fun but Xanadu has better books.”

No, Kalsuoth doesn’t wake. Mur’dah only smiles. “Well good. We still need to see what your mother decides,” sorry, Kiena, “but at least we know you’d both like to move back.”

Ezzie just rolls her eyes, “She’s gonna say yes, y’know?” So self assured! Ellie is just quiet, hovering close to Mur’dah. “We’ll be happy to be here instead of Ierne,” she says with a subdued smile. Just then, Kiena walks in, with Keruthien toddling along beside her on unsteady feet though the bluerider keeps a gentle hold of his hand. “You girls behaving, I hope?”

Mur’dah shakes his head. “You don’t know that. This is all very…sudden, okay? But we’ll figure it out.” Looking up when the others arrive, he grins widely at the sight of his son, gesturing towards him. Can he walk on his own yet?

Ezzie just smirks, so much like Kiena in the moment, at Mur’dah. Of course she knows! She knows ALL. “Fine. Just don’t take forever with it?” she drawls and ducks her head from the sharp look she gets from her mother. Oops? “Can Ellie and I play outside?” Kiena nods her head, “Just stay in this clearing, okay?” The two girls rush out but are within calling distance and occasionally glimpsed hurrying by or heard. As for the youngest, Keruthien can walk on his own… in short spurts. Kiena will wait until she’s certain the boy will have a good chance on making it before letting him go and he’ll toddle his way forwards in awkward, clumsy steps but grinning as he makes a few delighted sounds, followed by: “Mur!” Which is all he can say of Mur’dah’s name, though ‘dah’ is also often used as another title too.

Mur’dah laughs, crouching down with arms open towards the boy. “Daddy,” he corrects, gently, with a smile. “Why does he call me Mur’dah?” he asks, perplexed up to Kiena. When the boy reaches him Mur’dah scoops him up into his arms to hug him close, bouncing him on his hip. “That’s my boy.”

“Dah! Dah, dah, dah…” Keruthien answers back as he toddles his way into Mur’dah’s waiting arms, clutching at them but not immediately looking to be picked up or sit on the ground. Kiena just chuckles, “He’s parroting everything right now, Mur’dah. Don’t you remember? It was his shapes not long ago and random other words. I think whatever is easiest he has or one’s we repeat often enough. He’ll get it right. He just likes to say things. I encourage him,” Keruthien grins when he’s scooped up and then points around Mur’dah. “Brown!” he says brightly. Not Kalsuoth, but hey, he’s close? “Brown is right, ‘Thien. Kalsuoth,” Careful enunciation there. “Is brown.”

Mur’dah ohs. Right. He should know that. But he’s distracted. “Brown, yes! Kalsuoth…” And other words. Mur’dah hugs their son tightly, just holding him for a moment and then setting him down again, keeping a close eye on him. “So I told the girls they might be moving back. Sorry.”

Kiena doesn’t seem to mind and likely forgives him for forgetting. Bigger things are on the brownrider’s mind! Keruthien is happy to be hugged and happy to be back on his two feet, though once he tires of walking, he goes back to crawling or simply sits where he is and is sufficiently entertained by the small toy his mother gives him. “Oh. Already?” Kiena frowns a bit but sighs, “Don’t be. They’d know eventually, right? And? How’d they handle the news…?”

Mur'dah winces. "Yeah, I'm sorry. I thought you would ahve told them when you got them to bring them here…" His bad. "They were excited. Really want to be back here, apparently. So that's good at least?" Right?

Kiena smirks. "No, not exactly. I did tell them they were coming to see you though and that we'd have something to tell them. They probably thought I was pregnant again." she drawls, giving Mur'dah a little wink and stepping to join him at his side, keeping one eye on 'Thien as the toddler plays. "They really did love it here in Xanadu. I was worried they'd protest moving again but… this is good. Very good."

Mur'dah laughs, then freezes and looks at her, his expression teetering between nervous and excited. "You're..not…right?" He slips his arm around her and kisses her temple. "Good?"

Kiena would have led him on and teased him mercilessly if they had been in a better situation. As it is, she doesn't want to push him too much less she hurt him or worse with something that is supposed to be funny. "Sha— uh," She fumbles, stopping her swearing mid-word though 'Thien appears oblivious to his mother's slip-up. "No. Nooo, I'm not pregnant. Don't think either of us are ready for another go at that." If ever. She smiles at his kiss. "We're good. It'll work out… We've got the children here now. It'll be easier. Just… have to sort out what to do with our place in Ierne."

Mur'dah exhales heavily, giving her body a squeeze. "I'm glad the children are here," he murmurs. "I'm more at ease knowing they're with us." Especially since he can't fly. "Yeah…what do you think? I mean…it's a really good place…hate for it to just sit empty. We've put so much money into it."

Kiena leans up against him and kisses his cheek. "You've really taken to the girls, haven't you?" she murmurs and it's clear she's still so very touched by that, given that they're not his and Keruthien is. Did she suspect that the boy would gain favouritism? Maybe. "I don't know, Mur'dah. Part of me thinks we'll be back there soon but at the same time… We did put so much time and marks into it. May as well see it put to use."

Mur'dah dips his head down a bit. "Yeah," he mutters, a bit embarrassed. Well, the girls are more interesting. He loves his son of course, but the girls he's known for longer? They're all equal. "I don't know. Maybe we wait until we have more of a timeline?"

The girls are interesting because of their age! Kiena tries not to think about how old they are now, but she definitely has a soft spot for her son. "I'm alright with that, if you want to wait until the Healers give you a better idea of Kalsuoth's healing time." she murmurs and leans forwards to scoop Keruthien up. He begins to squirm and she tries to calm him.

Mur'dah nods. "I think it's smart. I mean we don't know if we'll be here for a few sevens, or months. It makes a difference…"

Kiena grimaces as she does her best to comfort Keruthien, who's growing increasingly more squirmy and fussy. "Guess it does make a difference… Ultimately though it'll be your call. Not that we have to rush the decision either."

Mur'dah nods, bending to kiss her forehead and offer to take their son. "I know. I'll keep you updated…"

Kiena hands 'Thien over to his father, grateful to have her hands free though the toddler does not wish to be held. He'll continue to fuss and when it starts to get a bit too loud, she will sigh. "He's probably hungry. So are the girls, no doubt. You think you can make it to the caverns again?" For them, at least? She'll glance to where Kalsuoth sleeps.

Mur'dah puts 'Thien down then, when he starts to fuss so much. He looks to Kalsuoth and then nods. "Sure, they'll be okay if I have to run back here."

'Thien is just in a fussy mood altogether as putting him down only seems to trigger a further meltdown and Kiena has to swoop in to gather the boy and try to quiet the worst of his cries less he wake those resting here. "They will be. Come on, we better hurry before he upsets everyone in here."

Mur'dah glances back to Kalsuoth and then nods, hastening after Kiena with a gentle hand against her back. "Try feeding him…" While walking. She's skilled, right?

Kiena will slow her pace once they're outside of the complex and she gives Mur'dah a crooked smirk. "That's why I'm going to the caverns? I don't have food on me or I'd given him some back there to quiet him. Girls?" She'll call, as only a mother can after her own brood. Ezzie and Ellie come racing forwards and they'll latch themselves on to Mur'dah while Kiena tends to their half-brother. "Don't wear him out too much, you two." she teases as they head together, as a family, to the living caverns for a belated dinner.

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