We Could Always Race...

Xanadu Weyr - Beach


The unerring range of subdued white rises and falls in a multitude of sandy dunes, creating an endless amount of tiny valleys constantly demolished and rebuilt by the frequent arrival or departure of a dragon. Smoothing out as it slopes gently to the edge of the deep blue water, the sand darkens and a shell here and there stands out for children to collect. The beach itself is set along a low cliff - the height lessoning as one heads eastwards, blocking a portion of the beach from direct access.

The wide wide stretch of water opens up to the east, the far distant shore way beyond the horizon and the beach curves ever so slowly round to east and west, distant arms of land embracing the wind-ruffled Caspian Lake. East leads up to the mouth of the Rubicon River, where the protecting cliff is merely an arms length higher then the sand, and beyond that, a winding road leading out of Xanadu's territory. Westwards, the beach narrows as the cliff swings out, leaving a path wide enough for dragons in single file before cutting in to the sheltered cove designated the Weyrling Beach. However, cut in the cliff face to the north are a variety of rough, wide staircases, providing access to the clearing and to the meadow.

Summer has fully descended upon the Weyr, and the heat is just this side of too much at midday in full sun. But midday is a few hours past, and this afternoon is perfect for enjoying the sunny beach and shimmering waves. Or at least, that's what Moria's firelizards think, and as a result she's out here, in her odd swimsuit, splashing through the low waves where surf meets shore with her fair dancing among the waves gleefully. Moria looks to be fairly relaxed and having a good time, a rare enough occurance in the last few weeks.

Done with whatever work he had for the day — and early! — Rished finds himself compelled to go to the beach. This is less his own doing and more at the insistence of his own miniature fair; Missy and Navy have been joined by a brown, who appears to be leading the pack, as it were, toward the water. He's not dressed for swimming, though he's at least seasonably dressed in a loose-fitting, short-sleeved shirt, shorts, and sandals. He's more or less trundling along after them, lost in his own thoughts and, for the moment, oblivious to any particular faces that might be out here.

Moria's paying almost no attention to her surroundings, just having fun, but Mulgrave has some complex about being the watchful guard (made worse by Nova's arrival in his little family), and he likes Rished. A lot. So while Moria's busy cupping water to splash Carbon and Blackbeard, Mulgrave peels off to skim down the beach, calling loudly to Rished as he approaches. Mulgrave's brassy call attracts Ria's attention, and she turns away from her game to peer up the beach, one hand lifted to shade her eyes as she tries to figure out who Mulgrave is so excited to see.

And it might be that their paths won't cross at all were it not for the intervention of Mulgrave. The familiar bronze is spotted shortly after his call is lifted and Rished blinks owlishly at him. Where there's Mulgrave, there's inevitably- ah. There. His sister — or a reasonable facsimile thereof. He raises a hand in a wave to Moria with a tiptilted smile, the other digging in a pocket to retrieve a packet of jerky that's easily opened and offered on a palm for the bronze if he's so inclined.

Mulgrave never says no to free treats, especially not that wonderful jerky everyone seems to be fond of here. With a delighted trill the bronze drops down, hovering politely just beyond Rished's fingertips as he lifts the piece of meat out of his palm. His prize clasped in his paws, the bronze backwings to regard Rished's fair curiously. The brown is a new addition! Meanwhile, Moria returns Rished's wave and begins wading out of the surf, heading toward her brother. "Mulgrave, go eat your treat and leave his poor firelizards alone," she scolds gently, smiling. "Afternoon, Rished. How are you?"

There's a grin for the bronzeling and then a slight shake of Rished's head after. "Suede," he says, introducing the brown that's bobbing around in the air and waiting for his turn at the jerky-snacks. When Moria speaks, he looks up and shakes his head a little, "Eh, he's not causing any harm or anything. Figure it might be good for them to get to know some of the older 'lizards anyway." There's a moment, then he catches himself with, "I'm alright, I guess. How're you doing? Having fun out here?"

Mulgrave bobs in the air at the introduction, chirping a greeting to Suede before flying off to perch on a rock and enjoy his piece of jerky. Nova joins him, coaxing the bronze into sharing his treat with the young gold. Moria smiles fondly at the pair, shaking her head, before turning that smile back to Rished. "I'm sure mine wouldn't mind a couple more playmates, if you want them to spend some time together. Not that all of them are that old. Really, Trina and Mulgrave are the only fully mature firelizards I have. The rest are still growing, though Blackbeard is almost there." She pulls her loose hair back from her face before continuing. "Alright, huh? I guess that word works for me too." She glances at her other firelizards, still playing in the waves. "Yeah, I'm having fun. It's nice to be able to just spend some time with them now and then."

"To be totally fair, I don't know if Mulgrave is 'mature', either," Rished grins, though it's a grin of familiar fondness for the 'lizard. Suede, Missy, and Navy all make their greetings and are quick to disperse, gambolling about in the water with the others with excited chirps and trills. Their quasi-absence brings a sigh of relief to the lad, his shoulders slumping with a heaved sigh. "Suede was an accident, though. I haven't had a good night's sleep since." Hence 'alright'. His gaze goes where hers does, a shallow nod eventually being given. "That's good. You deserve to have some fun once in a while."

Moria laughs, shaking her head slightly. "Yeah, it is certainly debateable some times," she agrees before offering a consoling pat. "I know what you mean about the 'accidents'," she says with a grimace. "At least I was expecting Nova, sort of. I certainly wasn't expecting her to be a gold, and Trisha got a bronze from her egg. Lord Gaerwyn was more than generous with his thanks when he sent the eggs." She shakes her head again then, turning slightly to keep the sun out of her eyes. "Everyone deserves some fun. Have you had any chances to relax and enjoy Weyr-life lately?"

Rished shrugs again, the motion slightly exaggerated. "Yeah. You knew she was coming, even if you didn't know what she was going to be; I was just looking for dinner and- it was just weird. A lot of weird." His lips purse, gaze drifting a bit off to keep an eye on his trio. "Was nice of him, though. I mean, it's probably just dumb luck that you two got what you did, but- uh. Yeah." A hand is dragged across the back of his noise and a vague, noncommital noise escapes him. "Not really? But, I mean, I've been busy. So, it's not like, uh. I've had time to. Mostly, I've just been trying to sneak naps in when I can."

Moria nods slowly as she listens. "I can understand that. I've had a lot of 'weird' moments since I came here," she agrees. "Haven't you had some rest days since you impressed Navy and the rest?" she asks softly, tilting her head to one side. "If they are really taking up that much of your sleep, I can, well, babysit would be about right. I'm pretty sure I can keep them occupied and content long enough for you to get some real rest."

"I- no. They're kind of insistent on sleeping on my pillow with me. It's something I keep trying to break them of, but they're stubborn. One'll be awake, the other two will be asleep; or sometimes two will be awake and one asleep. It's pretty awful." Yet, his tone is colored with some affection and Rished's smile grows slightly tilted. "They're, uh. They're great, otherwise. Besides, you have your new baby one and I'd feel bad if I dropped those three on you, too."

Moria waves a hand dismissively at the end of Rished's response, grinning. "But I have Mulgrave. He not only does a great job of keeping all the others in line, mostly, he also has this obsession with younger firelizards that is very handy when it comes to keeping them happy, full and sleepy. It's been a blessing several times over, even if he is the reason I ended up with both Trina and Blackbeard." She pauses, smiling, then adds, "But I can understand wanting to spend the time with them, even if it means you don't get any sleep."

Rished nods a little, his hands burying themselves in his pockets. He rocks a little on his heels, tipping a grin to Moria. "Are you sure he's not really a gold under all that bronze? He's fussier than some of the few golds I /have/ seen." Teasing, if mild; he laughs a little and then glances back out over the water. "It's just weird having them there. Good-weird, but weird. If I can get them to sit still long enough, I might make some, uh. Carvings."

Moria chuckles, eyeing the dark bronze. "I've asked myself that several times, but he certainly is bronze. I have no idea why he has such a strong… parental instinct. Maybe it's because Trina has none at all." Moria shrugs. "We'll see what happens when Nova's older. Maybe she'll be a good mother and he'll let her have that job." She shrugs again, smiling this time. "I remember when I first impressed Mulgrave it felt really odd to sometime have these outside pictures and feelings in my mind. It's gotten a lot easier to live with since then. You'll learn how to block them out when you need to, and how to actually listen for them and ask them to do things. Trina doesn't listen well, but Mulgrave and Blackbeard are both pretty good little helpers, though they have short attention spans. I'd love to see any carvings you manage to get them to pose for."

He digs a toe in the sand, deep enough to dig up a bit of shell … if only to flick it off to a side. "Either that, or any eggs they get between the two of them will be the most well-guarded firelizard eggs that Pern has ever seen," Rishy replies with a quirked smile. He listens to the rest with a slow, shallow series of nods, a vague noise escaping him here and there. "Ah, yeah. It's, uh. It's different. Figuring out which one's sending images is kind of hard, but I think they're making sense." His grin straightens out a bit and he nods, "If I can get something decent out of them, maybe I can do something with your fair, too."

Moria snorts, eyeing Mulgrave and Nova, the former guarding the latter as she naps on the sunny stone. "Yeah, probably. I can't see him changing at this point." She shakes her head, turning back to her brother. "Would you like to borrow one of them for practice while you wait for yours to get old enough to hold still?"

Rished blinks a little, then glances over at her fair with a thoughtful creasing of his brow. "I, uh. Sure, if you don't mind? It'll be awful, though. I can promise you that." Confidence? It's there, she'll just have to look past the goofy, quasi-apologetic grin of his. "But it'll be thoughtfully awful, for what it's worth." Suede, Missy, and Navy are, by now, quite thoroughly occupied with the water and the sand, generally just enjoying themselves in a way that elicits an envious little sigh from the young man.

Moria laughs softly, grinning at Rishy's words. "Well, it just means you'll have to practice on them a lot. There's plenty of wood around here for that, so I don't imagine anyone will begrudge you the materials for practice. I'd make you glass figures in return, but I'm really not good at that kind of fine work." Rished's sigh draws her attention out to the water, and she raises a brow. "Why don't you go play with your firelizards? I'm sure you don't have any more work you have to do today. Go play in the sun and waves." Yeah, she can get all big-sisterly. It's her right! Or something…

"Yeah, probably. I hate wasting stuff on fun, but … how's a person supposed to learn?" It's a sticky situation, that's for sure. Rished ponders her words for a second, his forehead furrowing a bit more deeply. "Hey. Are you good at making colored glass? It doesn't have to be, uh, shaped or anything. Just flat sheets of color? Or something like that, I don't, uh. Don't really know-" glasscrafting? Yeah, it's not his thing. "-anyway. I have an idea, I think." His attention drifts back to the water, then to her, with an eventual shake of his head. "Maybe in a little bit? I really should have grabbed something to go swim in. And a towel." He makes a face.

Moria nods slowly, tilting her head again with curiosity. "I can make stained glass in most of the common colors. What do you need it for? And how soon?" She scratches her nose, which has turned just faintly pink from the sun. "And how much, I guess, since I'll have to make it from scratch. We usually don't keep stained glass hanging around because if it breaks it's a pain to reforge." She blinks then. "You know, the water won't hurt your clothes. Just leave your boots where they'll stay dry so you aren't slogging around in wet shoes. Wher-hide won't take any harm from the wet. Just don't go swimming and you should be fine. Wading should be perfectly safe."

"It's not a huge thing, so, uh, just take your time." He's looking a bit more intently at her 'lizards now, some cogs and gears rapidly setting themselves to work. "It's just going to be broken anyway, so if it breaks, all the better." Rished's not trying to be cryptic, though that's precisely how it comes out. With a slight shake of his head, he glances down at the light shirt of his, the shorts, and then further at the foot coverings. His nose wrinkles. "Maybe later," he reiterates with a roll of shoulders. "I know that if I get close to the water, they /will/ find a way to soak me."

Moria raises a brow at that, yes, very cryptic reply. "So, yeah, what's it for?" she asks, blunt as she often is. "And what color do you want? I'll need to see if there are reagents available to make the right color. At least this time it's summer and I shouldn't have to go all the way to the High Reaches to find anything." She shakes her head at his continued refusal to go play. "You just can't have fun, can you?" she complains, half-frowning at Rishy. "So what if you get soaked? It's a warm day. You'll dry off. You should go play and unwind a bit. You're going to end up like Tenebrous at this rate and have no idea how to have fun!"

"Uh. Well …" he blinks and then tips a look to Moria with a sudden and lopsided grin. "If you can make it in the colors of your fair, that'd be great. It's, uh. It's for a thing. But I'm not going to be able to do much with it for a little while, so don't worry about needing to hurry. I could probably make do with whatever broken bits of glass there are." Rishy sticks his tongue out after her accusations, which just prompts him to crouch down and work at the lacings of his boots. "I can too have fun. I just like to have fun with a towel around." And if it sounds awful, he seems oblivious. Or else he's just really good at hiding his grins under the shaggy fall of his hair as he bends to do his work. "Besides, I didn't come here to have fun; I came here because they wanted to."

Moria shrugs and nods at his reply to her question. "I'll save what I can from the cullet barrels. Let me know when you need it. I take it you want to do something like give the carvings a shiny, colored surface with powdered glass?" Hey, she can have ideas, too! "I think it would be really cool. They'd glitter." As Rished (finally!) starts unlacing his boots she grins. "If you really just want a towel, I can get you one. I need to get some more sun salve anyway - my nose is starting to burn." She flicks her fingers at his firelizards. "I'm pretty sure that they wanted to play when they came down here. With you. That's why mine ask me to come out here with them."

"Kind of. I was also kind of thinking that, maybe, there'd be a way to … well, embed the glass in the wood like an inlay. But I'm not sure quite how to make it really look /good/." Clearly, it's something he's going to be mulling over in the meantime. One boot, then two are shed and Rished's socks are quick to join them. "Do you?" He squints up at her. "Yeah, you do. Does it hurt a lot yet?" Concern is there, of course, and he pushes to his feet with a glance aimed in the vague direction of the infirmary. "Or I could get it for you, too. I can probably run faster." He glances at his beastlings and offers a shrug and a faint smile. "Maybe. I think they just really wanted the chance to look for fish."

Moria ahs, nodding slightly. "That would be a lot more work, but it would probably look nicer than bits on the surface. I'll try to get you some larger pieces so you have some options. I can always help you cut them to fit what you want, if you need to." She touches her nose tenatively. "No, it doesn't hurt yet at all. But it will if I don't put on some salve to keep it from actually burning instead of getting a little pink. It has that tight feeling to it right now, like the skin's dried out." She eyes her brother, raising a brow. "Why would you be faster? I'm taller, in case you forgot, though you look like you might still put on a couple more inches. You might actually manage to be taller than me someday." Two can play the gentle teasing game.

"I'll have to work out the sketches and stuff, first. But, if you can help, that would be great. Better than trusting me with sharp stuff I have no business handling." As if they don't have him with /enough/ sharp things as it is. Rished peers at her nose, his own nose wrinkling in sympathy. "I don't know; weyrbrats can outrun /me/, so I figure being smaller might mean being faster, too," he replies, thumbs hooking in his beltloops. He stretches up just a little on the balls of his feet, but it's not quite enough to make him as tall as she is; then again, he's not trying, either. "I'd better. Otherwise, what kind of a brother would I be if I were shorter than you?"

"A little brother, of course," is Moria's prompt reply as she grins at him good-naturedly. "What other kind of brother would you ever be?" She flicks her hair back over her shoulders, grin widening. "If the weyrbrats are outrunning you, I shouldn't have any trouble. I've watched them play tag, and aside from being slippery as packtails, they really aren't that fast. Just very, very agile. I think it's part and parcel to being a kid. You get older, bigger, and less agile as you grow." She shrugs, absently tieing her hair off into a tail behind her head. "We could always race to see who is faster."

"Har har." There's a good-natured eyeroll for her reply and Rished just shakes his head. "I'm kind of stuck being little, but I hope I don't stay short-little." There's a slight shake of his head, then, "I'm just saying, don't underestimate the little guy." And that's him, at least for now. "And they are fast. Have you seen them attack the pastries at the serving tables?" But, then, he's all grins again, stretching his legs a bit. "We could, yeah."

Moria laughs, shaking her head. "You know you walked into that one," she says. "I'm sure that you'll get at least a little taller before you stop growing. Torged was twenty before he stopped, after all, and he's taller than I am, so you still have a couple of Turns leeway." See, she can be reassuring, too! "Do you know any weyrbrat that isn't fast when it comes to food?" she asks rhetorically as she begins to stretch as well, smiling.

"I walk into a /lot/ of things that I see coming," Rished points out with a quick sticking out of his tongue. "Doesn't stop me from doing it; I just figure it'll stop eventually." He nods a little, moving to stretch a bit more before shaking his arms out and resting his hands at the back of his neck. "Mayyybe. But I'm still the little brother, regardless." His nose wrinkles all up, his head shakes, and he cants a look her way. "Pffft. I've seen some stragglers before — I can beat them to the tables, easy." Rhetorical? What? He does not know the meaning of that concept.

Moria snorts. "Right, because the laws of the universe will change for little ol' you," she says with a smile. "Keep trying, little brother. Maybe you'll get lucky and the next wall you walk into will just cease to exist. Just have to hope it isn't holding up the roof." Ria shakes her head, waving a hand dismissively at his last comment. "Whatever. Let's do this. On the count of three?"

"Whatever. It /could/ happen." In his dreams, maybe, but that still counts! Rished grins broadly and picks his starting spot, easing into a getting-ready-to-run posture. "Alright. On three." And, for this, he seems to trust her counting skills, slanting an expectant look askance to her while he waits for that three-count to be made.

Moria shakes her arms out and preps herself as well, all set to take off. She counts evently, "One, Two, Three!" the last a shout and… They're off! To the infirmary they go!

We ended the scene there, but a random die roll did make Rished the winner of this little race. Let's hear it for little brothers!

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