No, I'm Not!

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.

It's not long after breakfast and most people are hard at work seeing to their daily duties. Having a rest day, and having been banishd from the kitchen due to feeling ill the day before, Lorelai is sunk to her chin in the warm water of one of the pools. Steam curls up around her face, her head tilted back against the edge with her hair wadded into a knot for a pillow; the petite girl's eyes are closed as she just soaks for a while. Judging by the puddle of water that's been squeezed from her hair and the half dry curls that cling to her face, the apprentice baker has been in the water for a while.

Heading out into the damp frigid Xanadu winter morning is right at the bottom of Matrin's favorite things list, so it looks like he's just now heading to the springs to freshen up. He swings a bulky sack of odds and ends necessary to upkeep his normally dapper image - right now his hair is uncombed, his face has gone all to scruff, and he's wearing rumpled jeans and a sweater just long enough to get here. He claims a spot at the edge of the springs by settling all of his stuff, and makes short work of leaving those less than crisp clothes in a pile and sliding into the water. Less shy than many hold and craft-bred lads, he's still circumspect enough to keep his eyes averted, though the fact that he so studiously doesn't look at Lorelai means he has at least noticed her.

Lorelai is anything but hold or craft-bred, with both parents being riders here at Xanadu, and she has none of the modesty issues that those that aren't Weyr-bred typically have. The soft splashing of someone else entering the water with her has her rousing just enough to murmer a quet greeting, though she doesn't lift her head, "Mmmorning…" If anything, she sinks a little deeper into the water, giving a quiet groan of pleasure at the heat that wraps around her.

Her matter of fact attitude helps Matrin to maintain his own, and he allows the briefest dart of quick blue eyes over to her. His, "Morning," is more chipper than hers, but then again he just recently peeled himself out of the warmth of his blankets and undoubtedly had at least one mug of klah between then and now as well. "I wish I had a spring like this out at my cottage," he offers by way of small talk, even as he turns and gingerly flicks the flap of his bag open and pulls out a hand towel. That lets him get a hand dry enough to rummage around for his shaving kit.

"Mmm… That would be nice, wouldn't it?" Lorelai just sounds sleepy and content right now, half floating in the water. She cracks open an eye to look at the man that's joined her in the water, slowly sitting up and letting her hair tumble down her back to dip in the water again, "Sounds like you're mighty chipper this morning…" She offers a slightly shy smile, more bashful about talking to someone than about being seen bathing, "Not that that's a bad thing or anything." She brings one hand out of the water and pushes her hair out of her face, tucking it back behind one ear.

Matrin just nods as he wets a cloth and rubs it across his cheeks and jaw, agreeing with her agreeing with him. For her offered observation he just takes on a slightly lopsided grin and rolls a shoulder. "I suppose so. I'm not a morning person but it's hardly morning now, and I have a good day ahead of me." He snags his cup of shaving cream, dips the brush into the water and then starts swirling it around, working up a foam. "What about you? Soaking in the springs instead of working and still not chipper?" There's a hint of a tease there and he arches a brow at her, then drops his attention back to the task at hand.

One shoulder rises out of the water, rings of ripples racing across the surface of the water at the movement, "Sounds like as good a reason as any to be chipper." Amusement bubbles in Lorelai's voice at that, though she wrinkles her nose at the observation about her not being chipper, "I've just got a lot on my mind, I guess…" She pulls her legs up and wraps her arms around her knees, shrugging again, "And just not really feeling that wonderful the last couple days." She huffs a sigh at that and rests her chin on her knees where they peek out of the water.

Lorelai's words are accompanied by the soft scratchy sound of brush bristles meeting scruff as Matrin spreads the white foam over his cheeks and jaw. "What sort of things are on your mind?" The question is gently interested, providing an ear to hear if she wants one. With the low glow light, the quiet lap of the water and the otherwise deserted cavern, maybe it's a good environment for getting things off one's chest. Even while all unclothed and submerged in a hot springs. To give her a bit more privacy should she want it, he turns to the side and sets his little mirror on spring's wall, swishing his straight razor through the water. "And sorry to hear you're under the weather too. Was it the cold that's going around?"

Lorelai shrugs again, her eyes going a little distant, "Just stuff…" A nice evasive answer for him, though she sounds like she might explain if he were to push a little. She makes a face and shakes her head at the question about her having a cold, "No, it's not a cold… I'm not having any problem breathing, or nothing… I have been feeling kinda sick to my stomach the last couple of days, though." There's a pout in her voice when she admits that, "It's just not fun." She makes a face at that admission.

Matrin pauses with the blade, full of foam and bits of whisker, hovering over the water's surface. One dark brow arches and he shoots her a sidelong glance, vivid blue interrupted by the dark of his narrowed lashes. "Stuff, hmm?" A bit of watery foam slides from the blade and lands with a plop, and Matrin waves it absently into the circulating current before swishing the rest of it clean. "Stuff going on and an upset stomach combined with a very introspective young woman, interesting." There's that quizzical little glance again, before he starts with the shorter strokes of his chin, making the required twisted face to accomplish the task. "So, what kind of stuff?"

"Yeah… Stuff." Lorelai frowns a little when he makes a list of the 'interesting' things she's mentioned and looks over at him, "What's so interesting about it?" She sighs and wrinkles her nose a little at his question, her voice meek and barely audible over the soft sloshing of the water, "Guy stuff…" She falls silent for a moment, "There's this guy I like, and said he likes me, that I found out has two weyrmates…"

Dip, swish, scrape. Matrin goes about the dull duties of manly ablutions as she frowns and sighs and all the rest. It is only when she is done that he allows a faint frown to creep over his features, and he splashes water to clear the remaining foam from his skin to give himself another moment to arrange his words. "Well, if he has two weyrmates I suppose the question is whether he, and they, and you are willing to see where this affection might go, right? He's clearly already open to something other than a traditional relationship." And so he neatly avoids her initial question, and in spite of his concern for her modesty he does give her a weighing look as he waits for her thoughts on his suggestion.

"Yeah, I guess…" Lorelai frowns thoughtfully, "Just… I guess I never thought I'd even think about something like this unless it was because of a flight, you know?" And she's certainly not considering it because of a flight, "I've kinda been avoiding him for a while now…" Because she's not really sure what to do about her feelings or where to go from here, "I guess I just need to figure stuff out, is all." She pulls her legs up closer, half hiding behind them, though it doesn't look intentional, "Doesn't help that I was told to get out of the kitchen yesterday so I don't get the whole Weyr sick on accident." The girl suddenly flushes and looks away, "Sorry… Here I am telling you all about my problems and I don't even know your name." She pauses and sits up a little straighter, "I'm Lorelai."

A slow, thoughtful nod might be agreement or just a signal that Matrin is still listening. "You never thought you would think about being with someone with weyrmates, or being one of several weyrmates or… what exactly do you mean by 'something like this'? I only ask because it seems to me that you're dealing with feelings for someone, and flights rarely play a part in that, at least from what I have seen." He takes a few wading steps closer, careful as he nears her to keep his eyes up and on her face as he offers a hand. "I'm Matrin, nice to meet you." As soon as she takes the hand he'll step back again, though she keeps his eyes for a beat. "Talking to him instead of avoiding him might help too. If he cares for you maybe he can help you talk through things. And for the record, I don't mind being a sounding board either."

"I never thought I'd consider being with someone who already had one weyrmate, much less two…" Lorelai clarifies, blushing deeply at the admission. She sits up, rising slightly and not caring if she's exposed at the moment, the pool being a 'safe place' where it's not taboo to see other people nude, and clasps his hand firmly for a moment. She smiles in response to the introduction, echoing his words back at him, "It's nice to meet you." She winces slightly at the thought of having to actually talk to this mystery man she's talking about, "Yeah, I guess so…" It might make things easier, anyway… She sighs and draws her knees up again now that he's resettled on the other side of the pool, "I guess I'm just scared, or something." Relationships are scary things, after all!

There isn't a rise of color in Matrin's cheeks or any other outward sign of discomfort. If he's careful to keep his eyes above the 'horizon' so to speak, it appears to be more about respect than embarrassment. This sense is further confirmed by the fact that once he's back on his side he grabs some soap and starts lathering up, though he's still submerged to his waist. "So," he tosses out, flicking a quick glance her way. "If the idea of talking to this guy makes you flinch like that, he might not be the best choice for you. Particularly if his situation isn't one you really like." He pauses, chest and arms sudsy, to hold up a staying hand. "You don't have to take my advice of course, but if you really care about each other, you should be able to talk about where things are headed without it being… difficult." By the end his words are slowing and at the final word he's wearing a faint frown, finally shaking his head. "Anyway, I think you should talk to him." He manages a little smile.

Lorelai makes a face, "I'm not flinching…" The protest is a weak one, though, "I just don't know how to talk to him." Her voice goes quiet, "I've liked him for a long time… Ever since we were candidates." And, apparently, that's when he started liking this guy, "He found his brown on the sands, and I went back to the kitchen with the other bakers." And that was that, "It's only been about a month ago that I ran into him again. I'd kinda been hiding out in the kitchen for the past few turns." She trails off for a moment, "And I don't not like the situation… I just don't wanna get his weyrmates mad at me." She swallows hard, starting to look faintly green around the edges and grimacing, "I probably should go to the infirmary to make sure that I'm not really sick, since I've got a restday, today…" Especially since she's feeling queezy again right now.

Matrin is busily scrubbing, hitching himself up onto the underwater ledge and lifting a foot out of the water to soap it up. It drops rapidly back into the water as she keeps talking though and he clears his throat. "This guy, he wouldn't happen to be Ers'lan, would he?" Again, asked gently enough to be brushed aside or denied easily. "If so, his weyrmates are both good women, and I am sure if you all have a conversation you can work it out. But… first I think a visit to the infirmary is a really great idea. Feeling queasy several days in a row is-" he breaks off and runs wet fingers through steam-damp hair. "Well, it's best to know that you aren't going to infect the whole weyr anyway, right?"

"Um…. Yeah, he is." Lorelai blushes bright red at that admission, "I'm sure they are. I just don't really know either of them, other than that they're both pregnant." She sighs and wrinkles her nose at the thought of having to drag herself up out of the water and go out into the cold to go to the infirmary, even though she's been in the pool long enough that she's all wrinkly and waterlogged, "Yeah… I don't wanna make anyone else sick." And she really could, working in the kitchen. Instead of getting up, though, she just sinks lower into the water, "I'm just… I dunno."

Now it's Matrin's turn to flinch but almost imperceptibly. "Well, I don't know Laera either. Keziah can be a bit…" he trails off and runs a hand across his mouth. "Well, she speaks her mind. But that's good in your case because you will know where you actually stand. Neither of them will keep him from doing what's right by you, I'm sure." As soon as that's out, there's a tightening around his eyes and across his jawline that is quite nearly a wince in itself, but he glosses over it by quickly adding, "One step at a time though, right? Make sure you aren't going to get /Ers'lan/ sick, then go talk to him. Remember he loves both of those women and he'll be able to help you decide how to talk to them if that's what needs to happen." He aims for a reassuring smile, then holds up a finger and disappears under the water to wet his hair for the shampoo step. He's soon back up and lathering up his hair.

Lorelai blinks once at the mention of the weyrmates' names, "Laera is one of them?" So she didn't know who the other women were, even if she did know that they exist, "Laera's Kereth is the dragon that searched Lan and me." At the same time, at that! She turns thoughtful again at the thought of Keziah speaking her mind and nods, a small frown knitting her brows as she gives him a sharp look, "Why would he need to 'do right by me'? We've only had one pi-" She cuts off, her eyes widening, "You think- No. I'm not." There's a hint of doubt in her voice, though. She makes a face at the thought of accientally sharing the 'bug' that she's got with Ers'lan and nods, "Yeah… It wouldn't be good to get him sick, because he'd probably give it to them and that wouldn't be good for the babies." She runs her hands over her hair, bowing her head so that her nose is almost touching the water, and stays that way for a moment with her fingers laced together at the base of her skull, "I know he loves them." She sighs, her breath ruffling the water and sending ripples in all directions, "I'd assume he does, anyway." She looks back up as he goes under, waiting until he resurfaces to continue, "I'd like to be with him, but I don't want to step on anyone else's toes, you know? If they don't agree to anything, then I suppose I can always just not see him anymore." She makes a face at that thought, "Maybe I'll see if I can go to another Weyr…" That thought isn't a pleasant one, though, from her expression and the way her voice breaks.

Open mouth, insert foot? At least it's a clean foot. Matrin runs fingers through his soap-filled hair, and it reminds him that he's got suds dripping down his neck, so he takes one more moment to (hide) rinse before replying to her. "If you aren't, then you aren't. I certainly haven't the slightest idea. Just putting possibly totally unrelated puzzle pieces together, that's all." When she starts to get even more upset he swishes through the water and lays a slightly awkward hand on her shoulder. "Hey, easy. One thing at a time, remember? No sense in getting all worked up when you have no idea how any of this is going to work out. Just…" he gives her a little squeeze. "Start at the beginning, hmm?"

Lorelai nods at his assurance that he's just guessing and doesn't really know anything for sure, "Yeah, well… I'm just not, okay? I can't be." Now she's just trying to convince herself; like if she says it enough, then that will make it true. Then he's moving over to sit beside her and offering reassurance, and she nods in reply, "Yeah… Okay. First things first; I need to find out if everyone is alright with it." She makes a face, "It might be better to wait until they have their babies, though… Maybe they won't be so emotional." She makes a face, "Mama was really emotional when she was pregnant…"

Matrin coughs, and his grin is weak and sheepish. "You really should talk to him, apparently. Avoiding him is not a good plan. His two werymates are both pregnant, and Keziah is having triplets." Short and sweet, he passes on the news. "I think it's time for me to get dried off before I become a giant prune, and you need to go get started on your first things, hmm?"

Lorelai nods, her eyes wide and looking like she's just been hit with news that she really isn't sure how to process. After a moment, a quiet murmer can be heard from the girl, "Poor Kaziah…" Three babies at once: Just wow! She nods, making a face at the reminder that she needs to go do things and can't just sit around in the steamy warmth all day, "Yeah… I've got lessons this afternoon, anyway, and I really should try to keep something else down before then." Not to mention that she has to check into the infirmary and then try to talk to Ers'lan, if she can find him. She pushes herself up to sit on the edge of the pool and reaches for the towel she left just out of reach of any accidental splashing, covering herself with it modestly so as not to offend any hold/craft-bred sensbiities, "Thanks for listening…" She blushes, "And it was nice to meet you."

There's a regretful sigh for springing the news on the poor girl so abruptly, but what's done is done. Matrin gives Lorelai a pointed look before she pulls herself out of the water, making sure she's remembering the unspoken items on her to-do list. Then he turns to focus on drying off a hand and putting his things away so that he doesn't drench them all when he gets out of the springs. Which apparently he will wait to do until she's gone, if his lack of forward motion is any indicator. Once she's towel wrapped he offers her a smile and a nod. "Any time, and it was nice to meet you too. Good luck, Lorelai."

Lorelai remembers, even if she might rather not admit it, if the blushing duck of her head is any indication. She quickly towels off and throws on the clean clothes she'd brought with her, gathering the small stack of her bath stuff to quickly vacate the springs and leave him the privacy to finish and get out of the pool, "Thanks, Matrin." She's probably going to need all of the luck she can get…

Add a New Comment
Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 License