I Have To Maintain My Distance

Xanadu Weyr - Feeding Grounds(#2040RJ)
A large portion of the eastern edge of the meadow has been fenced off, the corralling on three sides is located on the rolling meadow, while the fourth is located a short way up on the eastern hills. Within the large corral are a variety of beasts - ovines, bovines, and wherries - milling around, though the appearance of a dragon may send them one way or the other to try and escape. A small pond is set near one corner of the enclosure, and at times it reflects the low, bordering mountains.

Just at the forest's edge set under the tree line is a guest weyr for use in mating flights, a simple cottage made of weathered planking and grey stones.

It's getting close to evening and where most people have gone to eat or are finishes, Garait is here and leading one of the older dairy bovines into the feeding groungs with a sad look. The bovine's milk has run dry it seems and she's too old for breeding, so this is it and she's now food for the dragons. "There you go girl," Garait sighs as he watches her walk near the other bovines and start to graze. He stands near the corral for a little while as if saying goodbye and almost turns to go, but then decides to stay there for a little while longer.

It's been a while since If'an last saw Garait… True, he's been busy with wing duties, but that doesn't mean that he doesn't miss seeing his young friend. Not having seen the youth in the caverns for the evening meal, and Izzuth complaining about being hungry, anyway, the blond rider takes a ride to the feeding grounds to see if, perhaps, the beastcraft apprentice is there. The huge brown lands lightly and lowers himself as close to the ground as possible to wait for his rider to dismount a short distance outside of the fence, and launches himself back into the air to fly over the bovines, including the freshly released dairy bovine…

If'an spies the teenager standing alone and makes his way in the youth's direction, not thinking anything about the fact that the boy might be attached to one (or more) of the beasts that are being hunted by the over-sized brown, "Garait!" The rider sounds pleased to see his young friend, "Whar ya been hidin'?" Because, obviously, the younger man has been hiding from him.

The sound of a landing dragon and a shadow passs overhead hortly after, both signs that Garait should be going, but he happens to look up and see a familiar brown followed by the sound of a familiar voice. He tenses then, but takes a deep breathe and ties to force a smile on his face as he turns towards If'an, "I really haven't been hiding from you." Totally avoiding, yes, but not hiding per se, "I've been busy with classes, duties and other things." Like those things will stop him if he will bisit someone. "How are you?"

If'an gives Garait a long look, noting the tenseness of the apprentice's shoulders, but apparently dismissing it and stepping in to wrap the youth up in a tight hug whether he likes it or not, "Duties, 'n classes, 'n things don't mean ya can't find time t' visit." Therefore, Garait has been hiding! When he finally releases his young friend, he leaves one arm draped over his shoulders, half turning to watch Izzuth as the brown circles a small herd of terrified herdbeasts that are huddled together, but not running. Getting frustrated at not being able to separate one from the herd, the brown roars, finally making the beasts below scatter in terror and making the rider frown and mutter just loudly enough for his companion to hear, "Shardin' show off…" His next words are shouted at the dragon, "Oi! Don' run 'em too much!" He'll leave them scrawny… It's only after he's scolded the dragon, who quickly picks off the slowest animal and pounces, quickly dispatching of the unfortunate bovine (which, fortunately, wasn't the one Garait just brought to the pens), that the blond man shrugs, "Doin' a'ight."

Garait stares at If'an for a moment and folds his arms in front of his chest, "My mother won't be able to tell you." Obviously something happened that he didn't tell his mom. "You can ask the Weyrleader A'dmar about it though since he threatened to have you thrown out of Xanadu Weyr and me kicked out of the Beastcraft if there is any basis to the rumors, or if we visited each other much." There is a definite edge to his voice that he can't hide and he won't look at the brownrider as he speaks.

A slow frown pulls If'an's brows together as the beastcrafter speaks, but he holds his silence until the younger man is finished. When he does speak, his voice is low and very carefully controlled, though Izzuth expresses his rider's anger quite eloquently in another loud roar that shakes the leaves of the trees, "He did, eh…" Izzuth doesn't even bother to take flight, again, before he's after a second herdbeast, toying much more cruelly with this unfortunate beast as he takes his temper out on the bovine, "I think th' Weyrleader needs t' learn t' stay outta th' pers'n'l lives of his riders." It might just be a bunch of big talk, but it's very apparent that the blond rider isn't happy with what he's just learned.

"He should, but when a rider and an Apprentice have rumors about them, it can cause problems with craft nd weyr I suppose, and that politics is his job," Garait states. Though why this was only addressd with the Beasrcraft Apprentice and not the rownrider makes a person rider. "It is true thouh that I coul get expelled from the Craft if the rumor was proven true. So I guess he's trying to save Craft and Weyr relations." Or try not to look bad, whichever the case mat be.

If'an growls, the sound echoed by his dragon as the huge, spotted brown finally rips into his second course's belly and starts eating instead of just mauling, "Still needs t' keep his shardin' nose outta other people's business." It's not like they aren't both adults (sort of)… He unfolds his arms and leans back, resting his arms against the fence behind him, "Ain't like thar's nothin' goin' on, no ways…" Nothing serious, anyway, "Shardin' Weyrleader needs t' keep his shardin' nose outta other people's shardin' lives." Not to mention friendships!

Garait shrugs, but he finally looks at the rider, "If you want to talk to the Weyrleader about it, feel free. I really can't have any more rumors though without either being pulled from Xanadu Weyr and taught at the main Beastcraft Hall, if I'm not kicked out of the Craft all together." Neither option seems to appeal to the Apprentice. "So I have to maintain my distance, even if our friendship suffers. I'm sure meeting at dinner with everyone is okay, but I am not willing to risk my Apprenticeship. Not now. I hope you understand that."

Izzuth growls again and gulps down the last of his meal, jumping into the air to glide over the fence and land a short distance from the talking pair. The big brown curls up and starts to lick his bloody claws, still rumbling softly while his eyes whirl with faint hints of red. If'an nods and sighs, glaring into the distance, "Yar… I c'n un'erstand." He wouldn't want to risk his young friend being banished from their home and possibly kicked out of his craft, after all, "Stay in touch, though." He pauses, "Send tha' li'l green a' yurs with messages, sometimes." He'll do the same with his own firelizards, though Leo might try to keep the messages for himself…

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