Xanadu Weyr - Forest's Edge(#2700RJ)
While the forest is thick for a long while, in time it begins to thin, as the ground becomes rockier to the south western stretches of the Weyr's land. The trees are further apart, and the tumbled rocks become larger, before rocky outcrops steeply rising with the terrain seem to be more prevalent than the trees around them. As the hills begin to gain in height, the shrubs upon them become more stunted. A cave that was opened up by an earthquake has been widened into a mine, the initially small opening turned into one large enough for whers and humans alike, and the carefully placed support beams can be seen in the opening. Wher dens are located here (to see who lives here type 'dens')

The main trail seems to end here but in the thick forest growth that resumes beyond, a faint less-used trace branches, one to the northwest which leads to the deep forest while the other to the southwest east leads to the old forest. Northeast is the main track back to Xanadu's main forest and the Weyr proper.

It is mid-afternoon at XAW: the sky is brilliant blue and cloudless, the sunlight is bright, and a brisk wind blows from the northwest. Fiery red, gold, and orange leaves rustle and fall from forest treetops, swirling in the wind. Zahleizjah has gotten special permission today, and has wandered a bit further than usual to the Forest Edge with Ztyrian, Braczek and Draga to work on them huntin' lessons. The Starcrafter is crouched down, waddling along in front of the parade of creatures behind her. They're stalking a medium sized beetle that trudges along in a straight path, unaware that gigantic company is close behind. An amusing sight this is, the young woman practically on all fours with two firelizards jaunting up on both sides as they draw back and prepare to pounce. Fortunately you can't really scare bugs by talking and she says with a whisper "No y'wanna be really, really quiet with prey that can hear you.. wait until you're close and have your sights set.. once they're within pouncing range, retract, pull back all your might and prepare to pounce!" There's some excitement as she says the last part and the two firelizards cannot refrain lunging forward to try and attack. Their efforts are futile, bumping heads as they knock in to each other and the beetle treks away nonchalantly.

Yes, it's mid-afternoon and Garait is walking along the edge of the forest coming from the area where the new construction has begun on the new area for the herdbeasts. He brushes some dust from his clothes, then stops as he notices someone. The Beastcrafter snaks forward and realises it's zahl there with her firelizards. As she's intructing her firelizards, Forest bursts from the leaves of the trees and catches a flying insect as the two firelizards bump heads. Standing behind Zahl, smiling in amussement, he asks, "Everything going well?"

Zahleizjah is chuckling at the two dizzy boneheads who KERPLUNKed and pounced right in to each other instead of on to that beetle that is sauntering away."Oh, Garait! Hi.. good to see you out here on this fine Xanadu day! We were.. just practicing bug-huntin.. though with moves like that I'd say going well is relative. How are you? So glad you made it to the Gala! Must be excited about the new construction going on ya?" She blushes softly recalling the few moments where things stood still during their shared dance on an otherwise busy night. A gust of autumn's wind rips across the trees and blows the beetle over on to it's back. Ztyrian takes advantage of this, hops over the bug and chomps it with that toothy maw, Braczek then tackling his bro to try and wrestle it from him. That will go on for some time, squawking firelizard battles, but Draga will just sit there obediently by his master's side with a big ol dog smile.

Garait shakes his head a little at the firelizard's antics as his Green, Forest, returns to the tree branches. "I'm doing well, how about you? And the Gala was very nice and looked like a success and was very beautiful." He smiles at the starcrafter then, "Well, the construction just really got started, but it will be very nice. We definitely need it here, and I have hopes that things will be more successful than they have in the past." At least he hopes so since it would be tough to see the Weyr do all that work, and it all fail. "So, how is being a andidate going? Has anything changed?"

Braczek and Ztyrian stop fighting, but only because there's a lovely green perched above. Braczek, the flirt that he is, is all eyes on her, while Ztyrian chomps down on that beetle like none other with an air of victory about him. Zahl smiles back, standing from that awkward crouched position.. why did she stay there for so long?! Her knees kinda hurt as she does and before Garait knows it she's planking his direction with a dead-leg fall! "Oh I.. ahh.." She'll grab his arm briefly for support, shaking it out until she can stand on her own two again. "Sorry.." she's blushing even more as she retracts her clutches from Garait as a crutch. "M'leg.. sorry went all pins and needles on me there.. good otherwise.." Now she's nervous, and she half lied with her 'good response'. His next question gets right to the core though and she gulps. She'll draw to his craft stuff first, listening with genuine interest and asking "I've heard about some stories about dire days.. were you here for those?" Didn't sound good at all and Zahl will likely find a way she can help out and contribute if possible, but that Candidacy question is still looming and she looks away before starting to speak slowly, and softly "Well.. I hope you won't think differently of me if I say this.. Candidacy is.. rough for me.. and a lot changes.." She'll explain more if he asks, but she doesn't get carried away by overindulging to emotionally vomit all those mushy feeling things onto her friend at this time.

Blinking, Garait is caught off guard as Zah holds onto his arm for support, and makes sure she stable before going on. "You okay?" He pauses for a moment, "Dire days? Well, I was raised here and remember it and that's what motivated me to go into the Beastcraft and help. It was…tough seeing all though animals suffer." He watches the Starcrafter's expression as she speaks about Candidacy and puts his hand on her shoulder, "If you want to talk about it, I'm here."

Zahleizjah giggles softly, blushing, half turning away as if her beastie-friend's need some attention or something, just to try and hide those rosy cheeks. "Oh yeah.. m'fine.. thanks for catching me.." She may have over-exaggerated just a little, seemed a suiting descriptor in her mind but she shrugs and says "Yeah.. that plague must've been pretty nasty.. m'a sucker for animals and that would break my heart t'see all that.." The topics at hand have gotten a little dark, she's reluctant to share but says "I just.. get weirder than I already am.. n'I have these dreams about the wreck I was in.. they're less worse now that I've found A'dmar, but I'm worried the night terrors are going to start again.." She won't mention that she's so worried she's started talking to a mindhealer and her apprentice, but the fear in her eyes is obvious.

Making sure she's alright first, Garait pauses as if remembering, "Well, it was….bad. Just be glad you didn't see it." It may explain why he's a bit distant at times, since he's seen so much death with the animals he now cares for. he listens and nods, "Well, if you ever need to talk about it, or wake up and can't sleep, jusst send one of your firelizards for me, okay?"

Zahleizjah takes a deep, empathetic breath looking up to the skies for a moment "Definitely.." she agrees about being glad she didn't see the haunting visuals that have probably seared in to Garait's memory. That does, indeed explain a lot. Loss is difficult and seemingly unbearable at times, she too knows this feeling well. Speaking of firelizards, Braczek is still cooing and trilling to Garait's green in the trees and it seems Ztyrian is on the hunt again. The starcrafter smiles warmly and nods with a "Thanks Garait.. I really appreciate you saying so.. and likewise.. wanna go grab an early dinner with me? I have some chores to attend to soon after but.. your company is definitely welcome if you've not got anything planned already.." She'll wait for his response, happy to venture with him if he agrees, and if he declines that consuming awkwardness will make an excuse to depart with the quickness.

The little green firelizard is sunning herself on the treelimb, defiitely trying to look good for her admirer as Garait smiles, shaking his head as if to try to shake away the memories. "I can make it to an early dinner and would be happy to join you." He then walks with the Starcrafter to where they can talk more and get food as well.

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