Xanadu Wilds - Island Beach
A narrow band of pink sand is revealed by the ebb tide that forms a ring around the base of the high cliffs towering above it. Shaded by those same cliffs above on the west in the mornings, and on the east in the afternoons, the beach is perfect for fishing and swimming. From here it is possible to walk all the way around the island, but there is no way to get back to the top save for through the cleft. One must still be cautious not to get caught on the other side of the island when the tide comes in or they risk having to swim back to gain entry to the island cleft.
The morning after his little man-snit with Kale (boy-snit?), Muir is down at the beach casting his line into the water, sullenly fishing for his breakfast. Out among the washing waves loops Kenpo, the gleaming bronze searching for fish as well, or a duck, or…anything, really. Seaweed. He and his bonded are hungry.
Poor Alloy. The bronze firelizard is so torn. On one hand, sticking around here means that he is with Kale, and being with ka-el is the most awesome thing for the firelizard. On the other hand … this place totally sucks for hunting, and Alloy doesn't particularly like the empty feeling in his stomach. And so as Kale moves onto the beach, gnawing at the last bit of his pinenuts, he's eyeing the firelizard who scampers nearby, picking up those SOS, OMG I'M DYING OF HUNGER waves being sent. "Go on then," he says, waving a hand dismissively. "No reason the both've us have to be stuck here," to which the bronze gives a happy chirrup! and flits off between. Kale exhales a breath, half smirking, but..eh. The look fades even before he spies Muir not too far ahead, and he adjusts the hood on his head while continuing on, eyes on him.
Kenpo trills towards Alloy, excited….and then he's gone. Sad noise. Sighing, the bronze swoops towards the water and veers upwards once more, resuming his circling. His behavior causes Muir to turn his head and he notices Kale, shoulders stiffening slightly. "Morning," he says, pulling in his line and checking the bait before he flings it out again, a bit harder than usual. Stabbing the ocean with a curved bit of metal. That'll work out his frustrations.
Poor Kenpo! If the starving lizard had only hesitated for one more second… Kale, on the other hand, notices the firelizard ahead, and he looks up at the sound of his trill, watching him circle. Closer to Muir now, his eyes drift back down to the other boy at his greeting, brows lowering a smidgeon. "Hey.." he offers back, tone not at all unfriendly, though not quite welcoming either. Still a little irritated by yesterday's events, a frown tugs at his expression, but instead of passing him by, which was his intention, he finds himself slowing and coming to a pause near the fisherman. "What's up with you?"
"Hey," comes Muir's bland reply, turning his head to stare at his maybe-friend. "Me? What's up with you? Oh, wait, I forgot, I'm not worth talking to about anything important." He scowls at the ocean, ignoring Kenpo's confused and then commanding chirps. That's no way to behave! Diving to the sea, he comes up with - not a fish - but a stone, which he wings over to drop on Muir's head. "Ow! Sharding sack of wherry dung…" Might as well get everyone mad at him, right? Kenpo hisses and then vanishes between, leaving Muir to hunt for his own food.
Kale snorts, his frown remaining. "An' you say I'm the shardin' jerk?" he retorts just before Kenpo has his say too! He instinctively covers his head as that rock lands squarely upon Muir's noggin, ducking a bit and peering suspiciously up at the sky. Don't you dare! Gradually, he uncovers his head, his steely gaze resettling upon the cursing Muir. "Come off it. I don' know what the shell you want from me. What important things are you thinkin' I should've shared with you, huh? Since you're so grand at knowin' everything, enlighten me, will ya?" he says, sarcasm dripping. But..at least he's not walking away? Though, sometimes that may be the better idea.
Muir crouches down and jiggles the fishing line with a heavy sigh. "I don't know, maybe why you've been so…irritated at everything while we've been here? This is supposed to be fun!" Is it? "We could be doing all sorts of stuff. Fishing and hunting and climbing and playing tricks on the girls…If we dropped things from the trees at night you know they'd freak out. It's like you hate me all of a sudden or something." Because it's all about him, right? Surely what's bothering Kale must center around Muir.
This is fun? Kale looks at him as if he's indeed lost every ounce of sanity he believed Muir had. But at least he doesn't interrupt, perhaps still reeling at the 'fun' bit .. or realizing how he thought the same at first. This was going to be so much fun! What went wrong? But that near look of contemplation reforms into a frown as the list is made. Fishing. Hunting. Climbing. His eyes turn to the water. "We'd likely get ourselves shot through with an arrow. These Candidate girls aren't your normal type," he reminds … almost with a smirk. His eyes roll instead. "Shard it, Muir, I don't flippin' hate you. You pissed me off the other day with that thing you said in front've the girls. That was stupid, you know."
Muir turns his head to blink up at Kale, not even having to vocalize his cluelessness. It shows on his face. What did he say?
Kale exhales at that look, grumbling a bit beneath his breath before looking from side to side, as if making sure no one of the opposite gender has materialized into existence without him knowing. "The thing about the pee?" he murmurs, leaning in a little so that he needn't speak loudly to be heard. He eyes him, then leans back. "Last thing I need is Hotaru pickin' that up and calling me Fire Dick or somethin' equally stupid that'll .. you know…"
Muir frowns, and then he can't help but laugh. "Yeah, alright. She's nuts and yeah, sorry. But you were grumpy before that. I said that to try and get you to /laugh/. So…what happened before that? You were already pissed about something." No pun intended? Drawing in his hook, he sends it out again with a sigh. He's getting thinner. It's starting to show in his face, now.
Yes he was, and .. meh. He doesn't want to talk about it. Not with Muir. It was difficult enough coughing it up to Soriana, not that she prodded, and not because it's profound. But more so because….it's stupid. And Kale knows that (now anyway), and it'll just sound even more stupid saying it again, and to Muir of all people. He watches him reel in and cast off the hook. In and out. His mind wanders back to the observation deck, remembering a conversation they had. He exhales a breath, ignoring the grumble in his stomach. "I didn't take your stupid fish because I didn't have anything to pay you back with," he says, begrudgingly. "An' I knew I wouldn't have anything no matter how long we're here for, and I don't like freebies."
Muir pauses, blinks, and turns his head to look up at Kale. "What?" He struggles to comprehend this concept. "But…it was…like. A gift. I wasn't looking to get anything back from it. You eatin' it would've been thanks enough…" Instead of the insult Kale's refusal caused. "And why can't you get stuff to repay me, if that's what's bugging you?"
Drat his pride. It tends to get in the way more often than not. If he had only taken that fish… His stomach would've been so much happier, and they wouldn't be having this conversation right now at all. But, as it is…. Kale doesn't answer him immediately, his mouth still struggling with that frown that's formed and seems intent on remaining on his face. But an answer does eventually come, eyes averted as pretending he's talking to himself is easier than the alternative. "Because I don't know how. Hunting, fishing … I don't know how to do it, and all I can do is sit around an' hope to be fed. It's shardin' pathetic." He makes a snorted sound through his nose. "I thought this was goin' to be fun too, an' it was, til I found out how flippin' useless I am."
Muir blinks. Blink blink. And then he tries to punch Kale in the arm. A light punch, but still. Thud. Unless it's dodged. "Well f you, man. Did you ever think that I might /want/ to do those things with you? That I might want to /teach/ you? That it might be fun to learn? That it might, like…make me feel like less of your little sidekick to be good at something that the almighty Kale is not good at? Here," he says, reeling in the line and trying to thrust it at Kale. "Lesson one. Fishing. Throw the hook into the water. The end. Feel less pathetic?"
Nope, no dodging! "Hey.." protests Kale at the received hit, the frown on his face more inquisitive now than frustrated or angry. What was that for! He pulls his arm away in case Muir has the thought of socking him again, harder this time! But, what's he saying? Now it's Kale's turn to blink and fix him with a incredulous look. Apparently, he never really has crossed his mind! "What do you mean my 'sidekick'?" he snerks, unable to completely keep the humor at bay. Though he doesn't get to ask much more before the fishing rod is thrust at him, and a dubious look is sent his way as he holds it "You'd really want to teach me this stuff?"
Muir snorts, "Please. I'm totally your sidekick and it drives me nuts. You've got /two/ girlfriends, a craft, a career, all the girls just…/flock/ to you. That one chick was totally checking out your ass yesterday. I'm just this little nobody that hangs out with you and tries to give you /fish/ and gets upset when you don't pay attention to me." Who's pathetic now? Still, Muir's grin is crooked. "/Yes/, you idiot. Yes, I do want to teach you. I'll get to show off my…prolific knowledge, you get to learn, and maybe we'll /both/ get to eat because I'm /starving/."
"You're not a nobody," Kale says as he messes with the line a bit before following directions and throwing the hook in the water. Look at him. He's fishing! "Havin' a craft isn't all too unique," he points out with a smirk that finally is starting to emerge. "And the girl … wait, which one?" He tries to think back to the other day and picture who was present. This is important stuff! "Anyway. Like I said, you're hardly a nobody. You're what..fourteen and already searched. An heir of a hold. And throw you out in the wild and you'll make soup out've nothin'." His smirk now looks a little more normal. Less hesitant. "Alright, fine, you can teach me. Henceforth, I'm your Apprentice of the Wilderness." And speaking of starving, right now is when his stomach chooses to make a grand grumble, as if in agreement!
Muir just shrugs, brushing off Kale's reassurances. Though they help. They do. "That one. Jenna. With the hair." But then he grins. "I did make soup out've nothing. And it was /good/." Then he pauses, eying Kale for a long moment. "If I made you a knot out of seaweed would you wear it?" He's joking. Right? His crooked grin suggests he is. "So pull the line back in slow, and then when it's touching the bottom you pull it up again. Check to make sure there's still bait on the end, and throw it out again. I'll go get my stash of firewood, I have it laying out to dry. I pulled down some branches, which were fresh and green, and I've been drying them on the rocks, so they'll burn."
Oooh, the one with all that hair! Kale's brows raise a little, and a vague sort of grin curves his lips. "Have you seen her from the back?" he says with a knowing look. Girlfriends or not, he can obviously still appreciate a fine figure when he sees one! "You should talk to her," he prods before snickering at the thought of a seaweed knot. "Yes," he answers, nodding once. "I would." … He would? Or maybe he's joking! Paying attention to what he says, he does as told. "How can you tell when it's touching the bot-.." he begins, but ah there. He has it. He begins to pull it back up, still listening and nodding when he talks about getting wood for what hopes to be a fish fry. "So…keep doin' this til a fish bites?"
Muir's low whistle of appreciation is his only answer as he hurries off and returns in short order with an armload of wood, which he drops onto some dry sand. "Nah, she hardly even looks at me. 'sides, she seems like…really high maintenance, you know?" Lifting a brow at his friend, he chuckles. "I'll try and make you a knot," he promises, stacking the wood. "Do you know how to make a fire?" He's not sure, Kale being a Smith and all. "Yup, that's all you do."
No fish so far. Maybe he's reeling too fast? Or the fish aren't hungry for whatever bait may be on the lure. "High maintenance is probably only the start of how to describe her," Kale says as he throws the hook out one more time. "She can be alright, when she isn't … whining. I don't even want to think've how she'll be if she Impresses." The promise of a know makes him laugh. "I'll hold ya to it. I'll be the first in history to ever have one. Don't disappoint." He is totally sucking at fishing, by the way, pulling in the hook far too fast now. He's a man of little patience! But fire? He perks. "All I do is make fire," he says, offering the line back to him. "I'm like, the apprentice of fire. Coal. Wood. Doesn't make a difference."
Muir exchanges the flint for the line. "Then get a fire going. And you were pulling too fast. Slow it down, like this. Gotta make it look like food to the fish. Their food doesn't zoom around like a wher that got into the sugar." Tossing the line again, he draws it back slowly, but has nothing yet. Still, little flicks of silver beneath the surface show that there /are/ fish.
"Well, it should," protest Kale who exchanges line for flint, "It'd make this fishing thing a lot faster." But he does take not of the point Muir makes. He is the student here, after all! He crouches near the deposited wood an makes a small pile of smaller twigs and dry bark while watching his example. "Oh. .. Well, if you don't catch anything.." he reaches into his pocket and pulls out the last of his pine nuts. Just a handful left! "We can share these. Roast'm or something. Maybe they'll take less like ass." He grins, re-pocketing their snack before beginning to work on the fire. The flint is brought together multiple times, trying to get the sparks to catch. Strike. Strike. Strike. "Sorry," he says while working, finally getting around to apologizing.
Muir glances at the nuts and then nods. "Sure. Been wanting to try roasting them. I've got that bowl that I made." That he is /super/ proud of. "But I see fish out there, I'll bet we'll get something." At the apology he is quiet at first, before he shrugs a shoulder. "It's alright," he murmurs. "I'm sorry too. Just wish…you'd have told me what was up. I'm your friend…"
Perk. Wait a second. "You made that bowl?" Kale says, giving him a look of disbelief before he shakes his head. "You really are meant to live in the wild, aren't ya?" Strike! A spark finally catches, and Kale is quick to nurse the smoldering kindling, gently blowing and adding the smallest of twigs in first to feed it. He definitely has fire making down. He listens to Muir without looking at him, not wanting the fire to be blown out or die before he can get it going strongly. "Yeah…I don't really talk…much about stuff like that, y'know?" he confesses. "I felt stupid sayin' anything. But hey," a smirk. "From now on, I'll gush my heart out to ya about everything. Sound good?"
Muir nods, and though he's playing it casual there's no denying the pride. "Yeah. I didn't want to use /anything/ they gave us. So. I needed something to hold water and stuff in. Found some wood, carved that bowl." It's rough - really, really rough, but it's a concave piece of wood. So it's a bowl! Watching Kale with the fire, Muir grins and pulls on the line again. Then he laughs. "Sounds good," he agrees, much amused.
Hey, a bowl is a bowl! Kale seriously knows who he'll pick as a partner for any future 'Survive in the Forest' games! He continues to feed the baby fire, peering at the flames, lowering his face down to eye the root of it, looking pleased in the end. Gradually, it grows big enough so that thin twigs are exchanged for thicker, longer lasting ones. "And you'll do the same. I'll be waitin'..uh, on… bated breath to hear all that your heart wishes to bleed. Every agonizing thought of just how much you worship me." He grins, easy now. That's better. It's easier being friends than it is enemies, and he's genuinely glad that the weirdness is gone. .. ha, til the next time!
Muir smirks with a laugh. "Great. I look forward to spilling my bleeding heart all over you." Ew. Oh yes, this is so much better, Muir's easy and relaxed grin showing that well enough. Then the line gives a jerk and he whoops, yanking on it to set the hook and then pulling it steadily in. It's a fine catch, a nice 9 inch fish. Breakfast! Holding the wiggling creature up, Muir then makes a show of laying it on the sand and bashing its head with a rock. Twitch.
Kale rises up again, brushing off his hands and pocketing the flint to give back later. For now … there's fish! His eyes widen a little at the catch. That's a big fish! Bigger than he was imagining anyway. He grins, moving closer to watch the process of .. fish murder. HULK SMASH! "..Makes me thankful not to have been born a fish," he says, peering at splattered fish brain. Smirking, he reaches into his boot and pulls out a blade, likely crafted by himself. "Need this? I'll .. watch this first one. Next one's mine!"
Muir glances at the offered blade and nods. "Sure, mine's getting dull and I don't have a whetstone…" Taking it (it totally doesn't count as something they were given!), he grins. "First to scale, just scrape the blade along the scales. See them flake off? They're useless to eat." Scrape, scrape, scrape.
"Even when one is starved?" Kale asks, picking up one of the flecked off scales to peer at curiously. Fortunately, he doesn't put it in his mouth and instead flicks it away. Mmm, fish smell is starting to rise up! Nice. "Hey!" he protests, shielding himself with a hand as a few scales shoot at him. "That thing'd make a good weapon." The fish flicker!
Muir grimaces. "Ugh. Well, if you were starving then you'd just eat it raw and whole, but I don't think we're in danger of passing out so I might as well cook it." Smirking, he flicks a few scales at Kale and then turns the fish to quickly scale the other side. "Now, for the guts…" He cuts down the fish's belly and reaches in with his fingers, hooking around the spine and pulling the whole thing out, neat as you please. And look, Kenpo is back. "Alloy can have some too if he wants," Muir offers, tossing the fish guts towards his bronze before he uses a few swift cuts of the knife to make two neat fillets. "Now I wash them and cook them." Handing the blade back (scales, guts and all), he goes down to the water.
Kale ducks a flicked scale and counters by making a face at him. But ooh, now for the good stuff. What boy doesn't like guts? No guts, no glory! He watches on with obvious interest, seemingly amazed with out … quick it goes! "Just like that? That's flippin' gross," he says, sounding gleeful. Gross is a good thing! At the invitation, he pauses to concentrate a bit. Then, pop! Here's Alloy! Churr? Ooh look, foodstuffyummy! He joins the other bronze to chow down on the entrails. Kale takes back his … gooey knife, making a face. "Thanks.." he says, holing the thing between his fingers before manning up and wiping it off with his hands. These two are surely going to smell fishy. Won't the girls just love it? Fish, plus the musk of not so fresh boy!
They're totally turned on by it. Who wouldn't get hot at the sight (and smell) of their raw masculinity? "Yeah, it's easy. It comes out just like undoing a zipper. Popping and all that." Grin. It's gross, and it's awesome. Coming back with the washed fillets, Muir shifts some of the firewood and clears a little space, finding a hot stone to lay the fish on. "It won't cook evenly if you just leave it, you have to turn it and watch."
Kale squats near him to watch, taking mental notes. That doesn't look too hard. It's just the .. catching part that may trip him up! And making a line. And finding bait. And, and, and! "Where'd you learn all this?" he asks as the fish cooks, glancing over at him curiously. "Did your da teach you? Or your uncle?" Somehow, he just can't picture their weyrwoman roughing it like this.
Muir nods, "Both," he answers, turning the fish slowly with the end of a stick. "Dad taught us to fish. And I've always just…run around and tried stuff." He's had free run of the weyr and surrounding wildness his whole life. Plus Cold Stone's brand of wild. "I like being outdoors, camping and that. You didn't camp when you were a kid?" Since they're both grown ups now and all.
Kale shakes his head in answer. "No. We were outside a lot, my brothers an' me. But not for camping. More like .. for working," he explains. "We had…have a farm. Da taught us a lot about life. He has all these sayings about what makes a man a man an' all that. When I was little, I learned things about the crop an' the seasons and things like that." A smirk follows. "Was never any good at it. Was the worst farmcraft apprentice in the history've time. Whatever my family has, I don't have it. M'not good with plants and growing."
Muir's head bobs slightly as he continues to turn the fish, his brows furrowing. "Learning about life's more important than learning about camping," he murmurs. "And hey, you're good at Smithing, so that's good. That's what you've got."
"Until you're dropped off on a rock in the middle've nowhere," Kale remarks, humoredly. "And yeah, I've got smithing, an' it's the best thing I'm good at. If there was a forge an' a hammer here, I'd be less useless." A smirk follows and he looks nosily at the fish. "How long til they're ready?" he asks on behalf of his growling stomach.
Muir smirks with a little laugh. "Yeah, ten days of knowledge against the rest of your life. Hmm, I need a second to work out that math," he teases. "You're not useless. You give the girls something to gawk at." Toootally teasing, now. "Almost," he says, giving one a poke. "You know it's done when it starts to flake…"
Kale laughs and shakes his head. "Alright, alright, sure. Da's lessons are … relevant, I guess. He'll never hear me tell'm that though," he says, fondly. A little sadly. He hasn't seen his dad in a long time! But when it comes to fatherly relationships, he's not going there and easily focuses on the fish. And girls. "Gawk an' drool, y'mean?" he says, falling into the banter easily. "Isn't that your forte? You are the wilderness Master out here. Catchin' and cookin' fish. Feeding the masses? You're like, a hero." If they were starving and truly stranded!
Muir laughs, shaking his head. "Not really. Most of 'em think I'm nuts for doing this crazy thing, not using anything we were given. But yeah, I'd give them food if they wanted some…I like feeding folks." Maybe he's destined for the Bakers? "Try this," he says, pulling the done fish onto a new rock for them to share. "Might still be a little wet in the middle but I can't wait any more." Picking at the hot fish with his fingers he pops it into his mouth with a sigh. "I can't wait to be home though," he murmurs.
Yeeah, Kale can think of one or two that'd fall into that 'Muir's nuts!' category of thinking, but he instead dismisses his words with a hand wave. Ha! Please. "Next time I have serving duty in the kitchen, I'll make a reminder to switch with you, since you like feedin' folks so much," he replies with a bit of a grin…though not at all joking. He sucks at serving! He perks up a little more as the fish is deemed done enough to eat, and he eagerly begins to pick at it with his fingers, mindless of the heat until it's popped into his mouth. His hands may be rough enough to stand the heat, but his mouth sure isn't. Hot hot hot! He breathes rapidly through his mouth, trying to cool it down before swallowing. "….This is the best thing I've ever tasted in my life…" Everything tastes wonderful when one is super hungry! And with a grin he shares breakfast with Muir, falling back into the easy conversation that has become usual for the two. And perhaps even the beginnings of a prank is talked over, because everyone is long overdue for one!