To Bathe or not to Bathe

Xanadu Weyr - Hot Springs

The warmth that flows from this cavern is almost overwhelming for some, the steam rising from the shimmering pools as thick as the morning fog that rolls in off the ocean. Numerous pools are scattered here and there with ribboned walls that are natural in their construction. The water has a somewhat green cast to it, but it is merely a reflection from the ethereal light which is the glow down here that was so noticeable from the Lower Cavern Tunnel. People can often be found down here washing themselves or just relaxing.

Situated along the walls are various racks covered in fresh towels ready for those who step out of the warm waters. A set of shelves have been installed towards the back wall, allowing people a place to put their belongings while they rest in the pools, and despite the white color that these have been painted, they are cast with that eerie green glow. Then, it's obvious. The ceiling of this cavern is covered in the fluorescent phosphorous matter that glows are made off. The mossy substance almost glitters and appears quite lovely.

This scene was already in progress when I joined

"Huh?" Articulate, no? There's a dubious blink given to the young woman — who he'd been clearly oblivious to until she made herself known — and the flizzard-bearing, oiled-bloody-muddy Rished squints just a little at her. "Uh." Pause. "Yeah. It's over there," he points off, oh-so-helpfully, in the direction he was initially headed. The towel stack is noted, though he keeps his filthy hand to himself. There's a slight, awkward scuff of feet as he waits for any further questions, mud-brown gaze flicking from Avani to the pools.

Avani arches her eyebrow as the young man appears to freeze. "Okay… Let me try to put this another way," she offers with a slight grin. "Before I turn away and let you get into one of the pools, is there anything other than the towel that you'd like me to get for you?" She moves over and gets a pouch of soap sand, putting it on the towel in her arms and returns her mud-green gaze to the young man, letting a thin-lipped smile escape.

"Uh. N-" it's a 'no' that doesn't quite make it when the abrupt revelation that he brought no clean clothes with him finally hits. Some quick mental math is done and Rished confirms with a shake of his head and a solid, "No. I mean, the towel and stuff, that's, uh. That's it." Another scuff of boots manages to flake off a bit of the foulness caked on them and he awkwardly attempts to juggle the youngling blue to his shoulder. Manners are remembered in a mumbled, if pre-emptive, "Thanks."

Thea enters the bathing caverns with a robe thrown over one shoulder and a small bucket of supplies in her hand. It's summer, she's been sweating and there's something that looks suspiciously like spit up all over the front of her formal attire. Hair that had been done up in an intricate twist only that morning now has wisps falling about her face and shoulders. Clearly in need of a bath, she stops a few feet from the pools, a faint frown upon her usually serene face. The place isn't empty. "Ah, hello." Really, she couldn't think of anything more intelligent to say?

Avani nods and glances about. She waits for him to head towards a pool, and if he doesn't, she selects the biggests one which is empty and places the items beside it. "Well, enjoy your bath," she offers, her long nose crinckling again at the scent before she turns back towards the stocking of the shelves. That's about when Thea enters and the girl blinks, flicks her gaze to the woman's knot and reaches for a towel even as she offers a curtsey. "Can I help you with anything, Weyrwoman?" she offers in a soft tone.

"Hi?" is dubiously ventured for the weyrwoman's hello, just a quick thing uttered before he's off to pick out some pool or another. "Thanks. Uh. Again." That'd be for Avani, though he waits until she's back to the task of stocking shelves before he starts the laborious process of stripping down without making himself into more of a mess than he already is. Rished crinkles his nose at something or another, lapsing into a far more comfortable silence with his back to the others.

Thea scans the pools thoughtfully. One might think she's trying to decide which one to choose. Avani's question draws a quick headshake, her frown fading into a faint smile as she turns away from wherever Rished headed, "Um, you can start by not curtseying," it's a request the way she says it. "Hi." Yes, Rished, that'd be for you, though she doesn't turn her head to say it over her shoulder. There's a bench over by the wall and that's where she goes to plunk that bucket of supplies down and sit facing so the boy is not in her line of sight. Hands move to undo her hair and she's taking her time with it, too.

Avani nods and sets the towel near the goldrider before making her way back to the shelves, keeping busy as there is stripping going on in the cavern. Even when the towels are all placed in their shelves, she tilts her head slightly, trying to decide if there is enough splashing going on to assure her that she won't see anything improper if she were to turn around once more.

Rished is, at least, quick about getting undressed and into the water. In the water, then under, he doesn't surface until he's had a chance to vigorously work water and soap through his hair. There's a definitely 'blurbling' when he pops back up, hands scrubbing at his face and a bit of water being sputtered out. The blue, left with his clothes, utters a bland noise and twitches before falling back to sleep. Unnecessarily muttered: "Hush, Navy. Go back to sleep."

Oooh, towel! "Thanks, um?" Thea lifts a dark brow questioningly at Avani, "Don't think we've met. I'm Thea." Her fingers are still removing hairpins one at a time. That smell coming from Rished's corner of the caverns finally reaches Thea's area, wafted and made even more penetrating by the steam. Nevermind that there's baby barf right under her own nose. When there's a pause in those burbling noises over there she directs her next question Rished's way, "What IS that smell?" And Tharen wonders why she got him cologne!

Avani glances over towards Thea, not yet risking any looks towards the man's bathing pool. "Runner Avani, Ma'am," she offers, the way she presses her already thin lips together for a moment until they disappear makes is seem like there might have been something else to add there, but all that is offered is: "I thought I should lend a hand around the Weyr in exchange for the meals and hospitality these past few days as the Traces recovered from that thunderstorm."

"Uhhhh." Buying time, buying time. Rished glances just briefly over his shoulder, then turns a little bit more to glance at his clothes before his attention reluctantly centers on the querying Thea. "I don't really know, weyrwoman. Wasn't, uh, looking down at the time." There's an attempt at a smile, a moment's reconsideration, and then a sudden interest in his soap again. It's fidgeted with a little. "Pretty awful, though, huh? Uh. Sorry."

One hairpin joins the other in Thea's lap. This could take all day, or at least until there's no longer a teenaged boy bathing in here. She awards Avani with a look of approval. "Don't think anyone would fault you for resting your legs, Runner Avani," she says dryly, her smile twitching a bit wider. If she notices her lips, she's likely attributing that to the smell that's assailing her own nostrils. Casually to Rished, "You know, my brother would have said the lake might have been a good place to visit -before- your bath." Though whether Tharen would actually take such advice…

Avani nods and gives a soft laugh and a shrugs, "I suppose not, Weyrwoman, but I'm not built to just idly pass my time. I need to keep myself busy during my waking hours." Finally done with double checking the towels and the robes, she finally risks a glance towards the pool and relaxes slightly as she's rewarded with nothing more than naked male head and shoulder instead of the whole image. See, that way she can imagine he's got swimming shorts on first. "To be fair, the lake is still somewhat chilly at times," she offers in reply to Thea's suggesting of a rince in the lake first. "But it would probably deal better with the stench than this cavern," she admits, wrinkling her nose once more.

In one pool, a dirty - literally; figuratively has yet to be seen - young man is attempting to scrub the lingering traces of some unidentifiable smell off of him. His clothes are unhelpfully continuing to emit that stink into the air, but that hasn't yet occurred to him fully. Then again, bringing /clean/ clothes didn't occur to him, either. Typical. Rished doesn't immediately reply to the weyrwoman's words and, instead, occupies himself with a quick round of scrubbing before his nose wrinkles. Eventually, there's a mumbled, "I'll, uh, try to remember that if it happens again." There's further muttering that might be a 'sorry' or a 'shards', but he's quick to dunk under the water again to avoid clarifying.

Norela makes her way in from the living caverns. Miracle of miracles, she's sober for once. She tries to be quiet about her entrance, taking a look around the tranquil cave trying to spot familiar faces. Before too long she spies the weyrwoman and the familiar runner over by the towels, and makes her way over with a friendly smile and a salute for the goldrider. "Weyrwoman. Avani." She says quietly, trying to avoid disturbing the quiet. "Nice to see you both." The runner earns a little smile. "You were lucky getting out when you did the other night. That guy was /weird/. At least during the day those types don't… don't…" She wrinkles her nose at the smell coming from Rished's pool. "What /is/ that stink?"

"Thea, please Avani," the junior says as long swatches of hair begin tumbling down around her face. That pile of hairpins is growing as slowly as she can possibly make it. "Good thing there's plenty to keep you busy between rainstorms, then," she notes as she fumbles with the fingers of both hands through the demolished hairdo. "We get a lot of them during the summer." Her mouth opens to reply to Rished, but there go the sounds of dunking and whatnot, so she just waits until he's surfaced again, "Oh, it's okay, I'm used to Tharen's-" Wait, wait. This might get back to him, so she stops right there. "Just watch out for Hisolda. She can knows how to track." One might wonder why the headwoman isn't in here scolding him already. Norela's arrival garners a waggle of fingers from amidst dark strands and a lift of her chin. "Afternoon. Ah.. who was weird?"

Avani eyes Norela as she spots the other woman. "I'm surprised you not only noticed, but actually remember," she offers shortly before turning her attention to the goldrider. "In that case, well met, Thea," she offers with a toothy smile, "And I shall keep that in mind. Once the Traces dry - by tonight or tomorrow, I hope - I will be making my way from the Weyr for a little while."

"It's not /me/." Grump. "Stepped in something, that's all. It's-" he falters a little, canting a glance over his shoulder after realizing the words are coming from a third person "-… yeah, it's not me. Just, uh. My clothes." That should be burned, from the smell of them, though the burning might not improve things. Rished flicks a look to Thea, then, brows furrowed briefly before he offers a very dubious "Oh. Okay. I'll remember that," and a nod that only succeeds in getting hair in his eyes. It's pushed back with a resigned sigh.

Norela tilts her head at Avani, blinking in confusion. "Of course I remember. Why wouldn't I? I've got an excellent memory." Thea's question makes her launch right into her tale of terror, eyes wide. "There was this creepy guy here the other night. Kept staring at Avani and me. He had these scars all over him… I don't think he said his name, but he said that he lives in a cave in the wilderness, and that he sells hallucinogenic plants to people for money." That's how she remembers it, anyways. She eyes the foul-smelling fellow in the pool, wrinkling her nose again. "Ah… no offense, I think I'm going to bathe in a different pool." She says before she sits on a nearby bench to pry off her shoes.

The rest of Thea's hair falls with a whuff as the last pin is removed. Sea green eyes shift from Norela to Avani, "Oh? Where to?" It's more than polite interest. "Anywhere interesting and fun?" Do runners even get to have fun? That grumping over there from Rished has an impish grin curving Thea's mouth, although it isn't aimed at him since she's still facing away. She can't help but add teasingly, "Anymore." She's… yep, snickering softly and then Norela's story has her attention. All of it. She blinks a few times. "Hallu-? no he -doesn't-!" She rolls her eyes a little bit. "Herbs. He's a botanist. And he's harmless." If there's derision in her tone it's all for the odd-roving healer, not Norela.

Avani wrinkles her long nose again, though if it's at Norela's tale or the smell is anyone's guess. "After the way you came in here the other night, I'm surprised you can say anything about how someone may or may not smell, Norela," is offered evenly as the Runner turns back to grab a towel from the rack nearby along with a robe. The robe she drops near the pool where the man is trying to remove the stench. She pauses, collects herself and picks up the soiled clothing, moving towards the basket for the dirty clothing. "No worries, Avani, it's just like chaging the little ones…" she murmurs to herself as she makes her way. The soiled clothing it tossed into the least empty basket. That way, if there's no way to clean up the clothing, there will be less people who find their things have gone…"missing." She looks to Thea as she offers her question, "Oh, well, I'm supposed to be available anywhere up to two days' Run from the Weyr, but I've been more or less stuck here since the Trace were washed out. Again."

There's a vague noise for something or another and the young man is reaching for his towel. Rished's also mindful to keep his back to, well, as many of the females in the room as possible, but that's just a bit of Holdbred-ness kicking in, there. The towel's just wrapped around him, hands quickly lifting to push his hair back out of his face again for however long it'll stay away. Clearly, Avani's removal efforts baffle him; he's oblivious until he realizes his clothes aren't there, a puzzled look being given before his eyes catch on Avani. "Uh." Pause. "Thanks." Here's to hoping Navy's not settled amongst the mess.

Norela blinks at Thea, her expression one of absolute confusion. "You… you know the guy I'm talking about?" That just doesn't seem to make any sense to her at all. She pauses, then asks. "Are you /sure/ it's the same guy? He was very strange… he said he was going to get me some wine, but then he just sprayed cold water all over me." A truly terrible offense. When Avani questions her account, she just gives the runner a puzzled look. "What do you mean? I didn't smell or anything, did I?" She gets to her feet and puts her back to the others as she gets undressed, grabbing a clean towel to have at the ready.

It's a hissing squawk that heralds Rio's entrance into the hot springs area. And it's not Rio that enters first. It's a very…interesting looking green firelizard. So ugly she's cute perhaps? She pauses in the air and turns, flapping and squawking at something behind her. "Pipe down, Pizazz," a man's voice intones, and the braided Weaver enters the springs. "You're making enough noise to wake the…." He pauses as he sees people here — WOMEN here! — and tries not to blush. Why, oh why, don't they have screens or something to separate areas? Awkwardness or not, he's there, and thanks to Pizazz, he's not going to sneak in. "Er…hello," he offers, with a wave to those assembled. Apparently he hadn't heard any of the conversation already going on.

Thea's lost, casting a puzzled glance between Avani and Norela. "I didn't hear her complain about a -someone- smelling? She only asked what it was." Understandable in Thea's mind, apparently. As for the pool Rished is in, "I'd probably pick a different one too." Note, she hasn't picked any of them yet. Might be because she's also hold-bred. In fact, she's yet to take off one article of clothing. She chuckles at Rished's reply, "Yes, do, because Hisolda also bites." She's a terrible tease, just ask Tharen. "Yeah, I know him," the junior confirms to Norela in a neutral tone. "If he's covered with scars, acts oddly and lives in a cave? Yep." There's not a bit of doubt in her tone. She winces at the sound of another male voice, looks up to spot Rio's entrance. "Shards." Dismay muttered ever-so-quietly.

Avani pauses in what now had become her busy work of checking the baskets with the dirty laundry to see which ones should be carried over to the proper cavern for cleaning. She knows that voice, doesn't she? She turns and scans the room, her eyes resting on Rio as she offers a tentative smile, "Hello, Weaver."

"Ugh," is just a vague articulation, with Rished's personal limit for chaos and noise and … well, probably just bodies in the same approximate space soon being reached by the manifestation of a hissing squawk something somewhere. He's not looking for the source of the noise, his attention being mostly on the dirty clothes that are now in that basket. Bare feet slap on the stone as he heads over there to poke around in search of a certain snoozing 'lizard, with any conversations left to continue behind him. "C'mon, Navy. Up-up. Where are you, you goober?"

"Oh." Norela replies to Thea quietly, glad she has her back turned at the moment. "Is he a… friend of yours?" Because if he is, the trader certainly isn't inclined to continue complaining about the man in front of the weyrwoman. She finishes getting undressed and wraps the towel around herself for temporary modesty, turning around to survey the available pools. As she does this she spots the weaver who just entered, and gives the boy a bright smile. "Hey… Rio, right? I was wondering if I'd see you again before you left."

Thea seems to have come to a decision of some sort, busily gathering those hairpins from her lap when Norela speaks. She lifts her eyes slowly (and carefully since there's the sound of bare feet slapping rock and who knows if the boy is wearing anything) and directs her attention to the trader, "Tenebrous? Um. No." Again with that neutral tone. "But he's harmless, trust me." Those hairpins are dumped into the bucket of supplies she'd brought in with her, the robe gathered and she stands. "See ya later." She says to the room in general, keeping her eyes on that oh-so-pretty glowing ceiling up there. Someone's going home to sponge-bathe in privacy.

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