Out of a Clear Blue Sky

Xanadu Weyr - Infirmary

The infirmary here is intended for human care. It is spotless and smells of disinfectant, cots are lined up against one wall, a curtain can be pulled to give some privacy to the occupants of the cots if they so desire. A cabinet stands off against another wall, instruments and medications stored against when they will be needed. A couple of curtained off beds are used for examinations of patients and the treatment of minor injuries which won't require long term care. A desk with chair is just off of the doorway for the healer to sit and catch up on record keeping after a long days work.

Summer is definitely here, or at least it's doing a good job pretending. The weather's turned hot and humid, the sort of day that sidles up like a wet blanket and lurks. It's an unpleasant sort, one that makes meetings seem longer and paperwork seems endless… which is why Soriana left around midafternoon, because the paperwork could sharding well wait until tomorrow, and maybe by then the air conditioning would be working. (She also mentioned that to Jethaniel, hint hint.) Once home… things weren't much better, because it was still hot and humid, and even with the windows open there's not enough of a breeze to make any real difference. Soriana is… it would be optimistic to call it cleaning. She's going and glaring at things like that should make them between to where they belong. It hasn't worked yet, but apparently that's not enough to stop her. Occasionally she actually moves something herself. Like this coat that she's shoving into a closet, pausing afterward to rub awkwardly at her lower back. Grumbleow.

Ka'el has been working. Even though it's been hot. It's like…ugh, why's it so hot suddenly? It's an uncomfortable heat but the Weyrleader's gotta do what the Weyrleader's gotta do. There are Weyrlings to get tapped, which means Wingleaders to meet with and names to shuffle and discuss. Strengths? Weaknesses? How have they performed in certain drills? Ka'el didn't realize so much collaboration went into tapping a Weyrling! And it probably wouldn't be so tedious if they had the luxury of AC. And so, he's taking a water break now, and on his way to get ice from the kitchens, he's stopped by the Weyrwomen's offices to see if Soriana needs anything to drink as well. But! She's not there! Word on the street is that she went home, and so … of course, Ka'el goes home to check on her, after securing a few meetings later in the day with Comet. He arrives now, sleeves rolled up and the first few buttons of his shirt unloosed. "Babe?" he glances around as he steps inside, brows faintly raised as he scans in search of her. Ah ha, there she is, by the closet. He moves that way. "Hey, heard you left. Everything alright?"

V'dim takes way too many notes. Why's the man got to have keen insights into the nature of weyrlings? It's like he's had decades of practice at it or… something. Soriana didn't have that to occupy her, but there were other things. There are always other things. So many papers. They're in a stack on her desk, roughly organized by urgency and then… abandoned. Because nothing will break if she doesn't fill out the form for it tonight, and also she doesn't want to deal with it. So she's not! She's just… glaring at things. Icewater would probably be a good idea, but she… wasn't on the street, er, in the office. That's probably where the word came from that she had gone home. Now she's here, wrangling the objects in it! Not… effectively, mind you, but she's wrangling, and she turns from the closet to eye… Ka'el. Is he where he belongs? Is he in the proper place for a Ka'el? …probably. He's headed toward her. That's about the closest to a proper place that there is. She still makes a face. A scowly sort of face, "It's too hot."

Uh oh. Scowly face Soriana! Something is wrong. … The temperature. The temperature is definitely wrong! Could we possible lose ten degrees of it and go back to the comfortable temperatures of spring? That'd be …. excellent, thanks. Ka'el's brows faintly lift the closer that he gets to her and the clearer that scowly look becomes. His head tilts. It's too hot? He glances to the opened windows and the lack of motion of the curtains. What breeze is there? Uh, the non-existent kind, apparently. He wrinkles his nose a little. "I could get a few fans.." he muses, combing a hand through his hair. Yup. It's hot. Fans are needed! "Maybe we could get a unit installed," he says contemplatively. "Could talk to whoever needs to be talked to about that when I go back in for the last of the tapping meetings this evening. I've a few more.." he says to her. Code for 'I may not be home til late tonight, okay?' "Just want to get them out of the way." The sooner that gets done, the quicker the Weyrlings can get sorted in their wings. "..For now, want to sit by a window? Can get Kanekith to fan a wing," he says with a smirk.

Yes please. Spring can last until fall, and then a month of winter - enough for a good snowball fight and a sled race - before it's back to spring. Get on that, weather! …sadly, even the grand powers of a Junior Weyrwoman and a Weyrleader - combined! - can't actually change the climate. Sigh. There are things they can do, though! Like… fans. Soriana perks a little at the prospect. Yes, fans. They are a thing that would be effective at cooling the place! Or at least more effective than the zero breeze. Better yet, a unit! "We can at least see," she agrees to that firmly. "Today's just… ugh." She swipes a hand over her brow, which feels like it should be sweatier than it is. It's one of those days… and apparently it's far from over. She tilts her head to the 'few more' meetings, frowns… then nods. "Yeah, sure." The new wingriders will want to get down to the business of… whatever wing they'll be riding. For now… Soriana frowns at a window with its lack of breeze. That's hardly going to help! …ohwait. "Heh." There's a flicker of smile. "Okay."

"You could stand in front of the refrigeration unit.." Ka'el offers oh so helpfully, knowing that he's being rather unhelpful. That's a sucky feeling! He wants to help! But .. unfortunately, he can't change the weather, but he can cause a breeze! Luckily, Kanekith is lounging in the barn when he's summoned, so it doesn't take much time for him to make an appearance in the window. Yeeeesss? A dragon eye peers inside, and a snort announces his arrival. "Sorry," says Ka'el about his meetings, which are bound to run late as meetings tend to do when they begin after dinner. "I'll be here when they're done." No lingering and chatting afterwards! "I'll have Kanekith let Luraoth know when I'm on my way back, eh?" He smiles, nudges her a little and tries for a kiss to the cheek. It's too hot for anything else! "C'mon. You've got a personal bronze-sized fan ready for you," he says with a grin and nod towards the window where Kanekith's swirling eye blinks…Huh? He's going to do what? "He says it'll be a pleasure to prove a breeze for ya. Can't wait to get started. It's an honor to him, honestly."

"What, and let the ale get warm?" Perish the thought! Not that Soriana's had any of that for… oh… nine months now. Not that she usually has much even when she's not pregnant - that hasn't been one of the hard restrictions… it's just… sigh. Soriana reaches a hand for Ka'el's - it'd be a whole arm, but it's sort of too warm for that - and winces as her fingers curve against his. Not because of the hand itself, but because of this annoying back-pain twinge. She's been getting more of them lately. Especially like… the last couple of days, lately. Maybe she slept on it wrong? (Is there a right, with her belly like this?) "It's okay," she says to those meetings, though it's probably more like a three or four as okays go. Definitely not a ten, even if Kanekith's here. There's a smile for the kiss, at least, and then she heads with him over to the window and… "Somehow, I doubt that's what he-" meh, her back. "-said."

Ka'el smirks and shakes his head. "Nah, the ale wouldn't get warm. I'd drink it all before I'd let something so ridiculous happen," he remarks with a smirk, but..it's a smirk that falters. She may not be voicing her pain, but he can see it in those pauses. Those slight winces. Something's not right. "Do you hurt?" he asks, voice lightly concerned. Just light. No need to exaggerate things. He's exaggerated everything thus far. Making sure every seat she has has a cushion. Making sure that she has a seat in places where seats aren't readily available. Checking on her in increments that he hopes aren't too short. Asking her her number. Constantly. Rechecking her number. Constantly. So, yes, everything has already been exaggerated so much … he doesn't need to amplify them any more than he has already, right? So… he continues to try for casual. He casually instructs Kanekith of his task at hand, and the bronze .. needs a lot of mental prodding to get him to agree to being a fan. Bah. He's the dominant bronze! Not a personal servant. But … just this one time. Because. He asked nicely. And so he positions himself so that his left wing is facing the window, settling himself a short distance away. Wing-streeetch. And.. slow upward stroke, slow down stroke.

Drinking all the ale to keep it from getting warm… definitely not the ridiculous part here. Nope. But Soriana doesn't actually manage to voice anything along those lines, because… she's distracted. It can go on Ka'el's list of status checks: snappy retort, yes/no? Soriana frowns at Ka'el's question, but it's not particularly unhappy at him for asking. More… "Eh. Just… uncomfortable." She exhales slowly. Deep breaths! "Feels like I strained something." Not that she's been doing anything like exerting herself! Or that it's quite the right description for the twinges that have been getting progressively more annoying, but it's the closest one Soriana has. She puts a hand on the windowsill, leaning forward into the breeze Kanekith provides. It's… like guarding eggs. Only it's guarding his lifemate's baby, not his… by preventing overheating instead of keeping it warm.

Uncomfortable. Hm. It's not … bad. But it's not good, either. Ka'el nods to Kanekith, leaning out the windowsill a bit to feel the breeze himself. Making sure it's not too gusty. Good job, bud. His bronze will get much praise later. For now, Ka'el's attention is on his weyrmate, who is…strained or something. Or rather, has strained something. "Strained? What part? Your back?" he asks with faintly lifted brows, fingers curling and uncurling a bit. He moves nearer to her and presses a hand to the small of her back, fingertips poking. Pushing, Rubbing. "Does that help?" he asks with a faint tip of his head, concern flooding his eyes despite how much he'd like to hide it. "…Do you want to go to the healers? See if there's something they can do or give you to make it stop? … Maybe tea?" Because tea fixes everything right?

"Yeah," Soriana says with a frown of thought. It's hard to pin down, is the thing. Sort of sore on her lower back. Sort of vaguely uncomfortable. Sort of more in the twinges, when they come, than any sensation that lingers in between… but it's not like she's doing anything to cause those twinges, they just happen. Which … isn't really the sort of thing muscles do, so she's probably just being unobservant about what she's doing to cause them. Because logic. She shifts a bit as Ka'el's fingers rub, trying to get them to whatever point the pain is. "Mmh… maybe." She'll know it when he finds it? He just hasn't yet. The prospect of the healers has her making a face before she can help it. So tired of healers. "Like what?" Every time she goes to them, they take away something else. "I'm not even supposed to have willow salic anymore." But she can still have tea, right? She'd respond to that part, but there's another little wince, and this time Ka'el can feel it. There's a stir, way down under the surface. Like a muscle flexing, only Soriana didn't move anything.

Yeah, healers suck, but… "I dunno like what," Ka'el answers honestly, shaking his head. "I'm not a healer, baby. But…if somethin's hurting or…something, then you should maybe…go." Because he sure doesn't know what the hell to do, and if there's something wrong… like something really wrong then she probably should go talk to one, right? And they can work their magic and fix whatever it is that's broken within her, and her number would something close to a seven or eight. His brows furrow, hair shifting in the breeze caused by his bronze. He saw that wince. And he…can feel…that…uh. What was that he can feel? Like a twitch. A slow twitch, but backs don't twitch. Not normally. So this is an abnormality, and all things abnormal must be checked out by those who know how to fix things. "Sori, we should go there. I felt…whatever it is. Maybe you pulled something. Did you lift anything up today?" Another one of those things that she's not supposed to do. No more heavy lifting. And .. he wasn't here to monitor whether or not she's been complying today. He's starting to feel the heat now. The heat beyond the warmth of the summer sun. The sort of heat one feels when worry creeps in.

Ka'el certainly isn't a healer. If he were, he'd be the one giving Soriana a list of things not to do instead of just looking at her worriedly if she starts to do anything on the list those healers gave her. Soriana sighs, a long exhalation. "I'm not…" whatever it is she isn't, but she doesn't even know. She's sore in that weird way, and she's feeling… fidgety. An urge to move with nowhere to go, and so she's half trying to calm herself with those deep breaths even if it isn't entirely working. But if it isn't, why did that one healer order her to an entire hour's practice of breathing? Bah. It's stupid. She already knows how to breathe. She's been doing it all her life. Why should she practice now? …inhale… and… Soriana tilts her chin down, a stubborn set as she stares out the window at a Kanekith who's… probably where he should be. He's where Ka'el asked him to be, at least, which is close enough. He's providing a breeze that's… helping with the hot, which is making her realize there's more than hot going on here. Her frown for Ka'el's insistence is more a troubled one, closing her eyes for a moment before opening them again to eye him. "I didn't. Not heavier than a firelizard." Which if it was Haruhi…! But how's she supposed to live her life without lifting anything? It's unpossible. And - another wince, interrupting her train of thought, and Soriana's fingers curl. "…maybe we should."

Soriana could be one of those women who order other women around. She needs something lifted? Command someone lift it for her! Does she want a tall glass of ice water? You there, I command ye to get my water! Soriana could stand to toss her weight around in situations like these. Fortunately, Ka'el is here. He'll willingly do all of those things without her having to ask him. He usually has things more or less handled. If she's hungry, he'll get her food. Thirsty, he'll fetch water. If she's tired, he'll make a spot comfortable for her. Headache? He'll make her tea. But…this? He doesn't know about this. He doesn't know what to do about this. Kanekith is doing his part. Ka'el though? He's standing around, asking questions and taking up space, rubbing her back in the most unhelpful of ways. But … it's something, and so he doesn't stop, worry written all over his face now despite how much he'd like it not to. And … what? She's..agreeing to go to the healers? Now he looks downright alarmed. That doesn't…that…never happens. Something must be wrong. Very wrong. "Uh…yes. Yeah, we should. If you're hurting. You shouldn't be… And you didn't lift anything up, you're sure?" he asks, not usually one to question her, but…these are unusual circumstances! "Are you alright to walk? Does it hurt when you walk? Kanekith can carry you…if you can get up on him. I could…uh.." Someone needs to invent the wheelchair on Pern! Sweatdrop. "Can you walk?"

"It's not hurting," Soriana says, even as the winces make it obvious she's a liar liar pants on… well. They're not on fire, so maybe she's not that much of a liar. Besides, it's not really truly hurting. It's just… uncomfortable and weird and like her body is having certain ideas of what it's doing that it didn't bother to run by her first. Isn't she supposed to get a say in this? So… yeah. The healers should be seen, because either they'll be able to fix it, or she can tell Ka'el to stop fussing. Either way, she can be in and out and back in time for dinner together before he goes off to those meetings with Comet. Ka'el can even cook! (There's some sausages in the fridge next to that ale.) But first… … …Ka'el is going to decide she's an invalid. "Yes I can walk." Soriana eyes him, with the double strength eyeing. What? She can totally decide to go to the healers with only minimal prompting. Hasn't she kept (nearly) all of her appointments during this whole mess? She's been practically a model patient! …which might say something about the standards around here, but the point is… "Kale, I'm not - it's just a twinge. I can walk." There are probably some wheelchairs somewhere - or wheelbarrows - but Soriana's not about to admit to needing one. "I'm just… we're going to see if they've got something to stop it, that's all. Because it's annoying." Annoying! Not painful, not dangerous, not anything to worry about at all (that she'll admit to Ka'el), but… irritating, just like the hot and humid weather. "Okay?" She is! She'll swear it up and down.

She can walk? Well but… "Are you sure?" Because see, thinking one can walk and knowing one can walk are two different things! Nevermind the fact that Soriana's been on her feet today and is still on her feet now even as he asks her whether or not she can handle a task she mastered at the age of one. He's worried! Because those appointments she (mostly) went to? Those were appointments. Scheduled things on calendars that the healers had scheduled for her and told them to be at. This? This is an unplanned, spur of the moment, 'something feels weird' sort of healer visit. Totally out of character! Or at least it is to him, giving him reason enough to be glad that Kanekith is fanning, else the extra stress may have sweat beading on his own forehead. The internal signs are more subtle. The vaguely elevated tempo of his heart. Nothing major. Just a half beat faster than its usual rhythm. The slight, nervous prickling to the back of his neck, which he refrains from rubbing for the time being. This isn't a big deal! He'll keep telling himself that. Nothing is 'wrong'. Nothing is hurting. The baby and Soriana are just fine. They've just got to go get rid of those annoying twitches and then maybe stop by the Caverns for ice cream. Breathe in … breathe out. "Alright, alright. You're right. I'll walk with you," he says, moving away from the window to crack open the door a bit before returning to her and offering his arm. It's a gentlemanly gesture, not a 'you need something to lean on' offer… probably.

Soriana's legs are not broken. They are here, beneath her, and they still bend at all the places they're supposed to and none of the ones where they shouldn't. Seriously? …is what the look she gives him says. "Yes I'm sure." Sure as sure. Sure as… sugar in klah! Not that Soriana's had her klah lately, either. Or… gone to the healers except when she's got those appointments. It's true, the infirmary isn't a place where she hangs out. Not the human one, anyway. The dragon one, she thinks is a good place to spend free time. (Hah! What's that?) The one where she's the prodded instead of the prodder, though… maybe this means the twinge is more worrisome than she's letting on. Or maybe it's just that - like she says - it's annoying. Distracting. Something to tell the healers about so they can nod and say it's harmless (but they can't help her) but at least then Ka'el will stop worrying about that particular thing as much. She raises one eyebrow at that arm. She's already taken three - maybe even four - steps toward the door. Ones where she didn't fall over! …but fine. She smirks, taking his arm. His very gentlemanly arm, because going to the infirmary with annoying twinges… is definitely a formal occasion. "It'll be fine," she assures Ka'el as they head out the door. Because it will, or else. And because she doesn't need him worrying about it, or she… might get weirded out herself.

Yes, she can walk and is proving it to him by walking, but Ka'el is still glad when his arm is taken, whether she needs it or not. Hell. He's not even one hundred percent sure he's doing it for her benefit and not his own. Just to assure himself that she is here and okay, and walking, and not suffering some life-threatening pregnant woman…syndrome of some sort that begins with a twinge and ends with a coffin. Breathe in. Breathe out. Maybe he should've practiced those breathing exercises she was given, for apparently the simple, automatic task is becoming a slight chore. But! They're on their way. Steps towards healing! He pushes the door closed to keep the baby tunnelcats from wandering out once they're through and heads down the porch steps with her. And then, they're off! He keeps a normal pace. Or rather, what is now a normal pace for her, which may or may not be a little slower than her usual normal rate of walking. He doesn't run. Running would be stupid. And dramatic. And unnecessary. She's not bleeding or writhing on the floor in agony. That'd give him every reason to run. Buuut nope. They walk through the heat of this humid summer day, down the coast, through the meadow… He glances at her often, trying to read her face. Does she need a break? She'd..probably tell him if she did! Right? … Across the clearing. He glances to the annex. He should check on those dragons that crashed soon. Oh! That's a normal, not-panicy topic of conversation… -.-; "Have Zinieith and Cayceth been released?" he asks as they approach the Caverns. Almost there. Almost there. And she's still intact.

Hah. Soriana is not, nor has she ever been, a fragile and delicate flower. She's not going to fall over, with or without Ka'el's arm. So he shouldn't be worrying himself… though he probably is. Honestly, how could he not, given he can feel the slight tightenings of her fingers that go along with some of those twinges, the way she's… not taking all her steps quite as promptly as she should, even according to her new rate of walking. …and yet she hasn't cast off his arm in order to prove she can still walk on her own. She… might even… okay, she doesn't need it. No way, no how. She might, just maybe, appreciate it at the moment. Just a bit. Even if it means giving in to Ka'el's fussing… but then, they are going to the healers. She's pretty much already given into that. Enough to get looked at. Not enough to actually take a break for more than half a second at a time, and not enough to disturb the 'doing fine' look on her face. It just… takes more effort to keep on, sometimes, and that effort is sometimes visible as well. A distraction? Yeah, that would be nice, but she doesn't have the attention to think of one. At least Ka'el (eventually) provides. "Uh…" She knows the answer to this one! Honest! "…Zinieth has. Cayceth's still…" In pain? No, that's what numbweed and the queens are for. "…under observation." And soon, Soriana will be too, only she gets the human healers.

Conversation. It’s just the thing to keep the mind off of the pain! Not that Soriana is feeling any pain. She’s adamant that it isn’t that. The twinge. The flexing. The whatever it is that’s making her wince so, conversation will take her mind off of it. Hopefully. And what better to speak to a dragonhealer about than injured dragons? “What are they observing? He isn’t badly injured, is he? Anything wrong with the wings?” For what good is a dragon who can’t fly? And a rider with a dragon who can’t fly is no better. Traumatized! He looks ahead to the caverns, his brows setting in a furrow. “What happened to cause them to crash, do you know?” Hey, this is helping keep his mind off of things too! Granted, he’s not the one with pulsations or whatever going through his body, so perhaps it’s a tad easier for him to distract himself. In to the Caverns they go, Ka’el pushing open the door with one hand and keeping a hold of her with the other. “Shards, crashes don’t happen often … I’m glad to hear the brown is alright. But still..” T’bor’s a rider. He should know better! Or maybe it was the fault of the Weyrling? Or… hey. Here’s the infirmary door! Destination, reached.

"It's not bad," Soriana assures Ka'el first off. Which is good, because the next thing she says is, "It's on the wing, but…" ow. Says her, not Cayceth. "…just the spar. S'an awkward…" feeling, these twinges. Also, speaking of Cayceth, "…place to put a dressing, so they're keeping him. So it won't get infected." Nothing big! Nothing to worry about! Just like these twinges are, surely, nothing at all to worry about. Cayceth's just being kept for observation and so he doesn't roll around in the mud. Soriana… they'd better not try to keep her, because she's getting ice cream after this, then going home for dinner and to feed the tunnelcats. As for what caused the crash? Soriana frowns. "Greenflight." It answers so much, doesn't it? Why a weyrling brown wasn't looking where he was going. Why a blue was distracted. Why they were sharing the same airspace without being in a wing together. Why… is she having these twinges? Greenflights don't answer that, but they're at the infirmary now, so hopefully the healers can. Soriana opens the door - see, she can still operate a doorknob - and steps inside. The healer in there takes one look at them and says, "How far?"

Ooh. Greenflight. Yes, that says everything. Enough that Ka'el doesn't need to ask any more questions regarding the accident. Obviously that flight lesson came just in time … and just as obvious is that flight lessons can't cover everything about flights. They never spoke about crashes. … Ah well. Live and learn, right? Heh. He means to smile when she opens the door, but he's remembering to worry now. The topic change didn't make the hurt go away. She can't convince him now that it isn't pain that she feels. She said 'ow'. That's a word that you say when you get an ouch feeling! And so a smile doesn't quite reach his face as they head inside, and immediately does he look around for someone to hail down. But, hey look at this! They get the VIP treatment! It must be the knots or something, right? He steers himself and Soriana towards the inquiring healer, but the question that's asked…miffs him. How far? ….. How far is what? What kind of question is that for a healer to ask! Regardless of the apparent absurdity of it, Ka'el answers…the best way he knows how. "We came from our weyr. Down the coastal road, straight to here." Yeah. That's how far they walked, which is surely what is being asked, right? (He'll choose to ignore the tittered giggle from a nearby senior apprentice, who believes the answer was adorable.) Now, on to the important bits of information! "She says she feels as if she's strained something, and I felt something when I pressed my hand to her back. Low on her back." No hellos or good days. Fix his weyrmate now please!

What besides distance (that they walked) could the healers possibly mean to ask? Soriana looks similarly befuddled at the question. She knows what those words mean, just… uh… (ow…) not why they're being asked. The healer who asked them, strangely enough, looks confused at the answer. Yeah, sure, they… but… oh. There's a smug little smile from the healer to go with the apprentice's amusement, but at least he listens to the rest of what Ka'el has to say. Soriana gives Ka'el a look - she can talk on her own, honest - but doesn't actually… interrupt him to do so. Besides, he's got the facts more or less right, so either the healers will give her pills and send her away or else they'll want to do an exam. …only they don't quite do either. The healer addresses Soriana as he asks, "How far apart?" The strains! The twinges! The mysterious somethings! The… … …contractions. Soriana blinks at the question. It makes more sense than the last one! Because yeah, there's a pattern to those twinges, especially now that she's thinking about it. Especially now. "Every… few minutes?" She frowns, or maybe winces. It's hard to tell. "More than it was."

"Shall I prepare a private space, sir?" asks that senior apprentice, who has more of a clue of what's going on than Ka'el does. Birthing is a common practice on a Weyr, with dragons rising and dragons catching. The aftermath of all of that usually ends up right here. Flight babies! Weyrs are a perfect place for apprentices like her, who hope to specialize in all things prenatal. Ka'el, on the other hand…just wants to know what the heck is happening here. How far apart? And how in the shards did Soriana know enough of what he meant to give an answer? His eyes ping and pong between her and the healer, even glancing to that apprentice who he at least can get a clue from. Soriana needs a bed. Which must mean they're planning on her having to need a bed for a prolonged stay. Which most certainly means something is seriously wrong! He keeps her on his arm. If she pulls away, she'll find an arm around her waist because he's not letting go without a fight. "What's happening?" he asks, looking at the healer now with eyes that betray alarm. Alarm, mind you, not panic. He's the Weyrleader, trained by Galaxy. He knows how to keep a cool head in stressful situations. Though, it's nice to know what sort of situation he's dealing with. "Will she be alright? Is there anything she can take to help make her pain stop?" Those timely pains.

Yeah, see, maybe if Soriana'd been a bit more forthright about what she was feeling - y'know, instead of hiding the ones she was capable of hiding - Ka'el would have a better idea about the fact that they came on a scheduled basis. She certainly noticed it, at least when prompted to do so… though she's still not quite sure what all's going on here or… why the healer thought that was a good question. It apparently was - he's nodding to her answer - but… Soriana glances to Ka'el, shifting on her feet to lean closer to him. The healer looks to the apprentice, and nods. "Yes, do that." Apparently that question wasn't even for the patients! …er, patient and weyrmate. Or… well… patient and patient-to-be. And also weyrmate, because let's not discount Ka'el, but… the healer looks back to Ka'el, and smiles indulgently. "Now then, everything will be fine." So he says. Soriana frowns. "You haven't even looked yet." Because, uh. What if she's bleeding out or something? There's a weird sort of damp feeling that's probably just sweaty things from the heat of the day… probably. That senior apprentice is preparing a space. The healer himself continues with the placating. "Better you don't, just now." That's Ka'el's question being answered while looking at Soriana. "We'll just take a look and see how wide, but you seem to be doing well so far." …wut.

Okay! Time for cheerful apprentice to Get Things Ready! She heads off to do just that, giving Soriana and Ka'el both a reassuring grin. A bright row of white teeth. "Don't you worry. Everything will be fine!" she says before she's off down a ways to collect things such as blankets and pillows. Pretty normal stuff for bed making. Don't forget the gloves! She lays those out for the healer. And, you know, just in case they're needed, she begins to collect surgical looking metal things. At least she has the mind enough to block those from view. La te da! Ka'el is not liking the overuse of the word 'fine' here. Suspicion and worry makes for a short temper, and the healer is frowned at as Soriana makes a point. Nothing's been done, but she'll be fine? And … they're not going to give her anything? Well why the shards not?? Breathe in…out.. Keep your composure, Ka'el. "Why won't she get anything? She's been like this..for a while, and she's uncomfortable. Isn't the goal…to make her comfortable?" There’s only a little strain to be heard in his voice. Just a little. And now the speaker is speaking nonsense again. Speaking about math and measuring width. Is this guy a transfer? "Take a look at what? …Is there someone else?" he asks, eyes flitting around quickly.

It's the miracle of life! Which, when you get right down to it, is less miraculous and more a bunch of hard work. The senior apprentice who's preparing their bed? She's got the easy part! Blanket and pillows. Gloves. Some towels. Uh… maybe those are to wipe the sweat from their brows, because it's hot and they just walked here from their weyr. …yeah, that must be it. Those funny-looking instruments are hidden from view, which is good. Neither Soriana nor Ka'el seem likely to laugh at them… or at the healer, however laughable they think his treatment plan. Now he's nodding to Soriana. "We will." They'll take an actual look once they finish diagnosing her? Isn't it supposed to be the other way around? "And we'll make you as comfortable as we can -" while not giving her any actual meds for her pain "- while you have that baby."

Oh, this is a special occasion. Soriana gets the nicer area of the infirmary because of her special predicament. While the sheets and bedding are the same generic sort of material, the area is a bit more decorated. Soft colors. (Calming colors) A plant in the corner. A perfect place to have a baby! The apprentice rolls those emergency tools out of view and steps back to review her mental checklist. Has she done everything? Everything ready and in grabbing distance? Deeming it so, she heads back to the little group just as Ka'el connects all the little dots of the day. She's having … THE BABY?? Oh yes. That's worthy of all capital letters, for the phrase is all but shouted in his mind. … Whhhhaaaat? Eyes are blue saucers as he looks to Soriana. "You're having the baby??" Why didn't she tell him! o.O; He looks at her stomach, then back at her with that same blind-sided sort of look. Not panicking. Nope. But…that heart rate is climbing, and suddenly the infirmary feels like a sauna. "Sh-she needs to sit down. Shouldn't she be sitting down? Or is it laying down?" is it just him or are his words racing out of his mouth like a flood? "The area is ready, sir," pipes up the apprentice, eyes on Soriana. All eyes on Soriana, the main attraction.

It's a magic trick. Soriana will magically pull a baby out of… uh. This is one of the parts she's been trying not to think about, because it's not magic and while babies aren't all that big, neither is she… relatively. Not uh… where she's going to have. …going to have… …have the… "Now?" she asks. How about they reschedule to a more convenient time? A week from tomorrow? Maybe a month, around lunchtime, with a pleasant breeze and… she's having the baby? The look she gives back to Ka'el holds equal parts of w, t and f. Nobody told her backaches were this hazardous! "But it's just…" the natural course of pregnancy, concluding in a baby? Who wants to come out, which is why Soriana's body is responding with the waves of muscular contractions to push it out, which is why she trails off there into another twinge. Another… contraction. The healer smiles, nodding to the apprentice. "We've a bed all ready for you. Right this way…" he tells Soriana, still smiling. It's a joyous time, or so the soft colors of the walls and the naturalistic dash of that plant assure. So the healers assure as well, and never mind the pushing and straining and cramping that's to come. All just… part of today's visit to the infirmary. Two will enter. Three will leave.

The apprentice hangs back, for while she is part of the infirmary staff today, she's not exactly qualified to go sticking her hands up places that … may or may not need a hand later on. But she'll be in the peripherals, ready to get anything that the healer may need. Towels! Water! She's on it. Ka'el can feel his heart beating somewhere ridiculously high in his throat. How did it get up there, and how does he get it back down in its proper place in his chest? He ponders this as he walks with her to that bed in the prepared…eh, birthing area? He's only vaguely aware that this space looks different than the other cots in the area. He's focused on his heart and Soriana and…the baby that's apparently making its debut at some point … today. Today. A day in which he already has meetings scheduled and things to do. Today, which he was going to use to hunt down Damari and Dorry and give them the good news of their new wings. There are things to finish and do today. A list of them. None of which was 'become a father.' Yet, here they are! With hearts racing and an overall sense of unpreparedness permeating the air. He wasn't sure what he was expecting. Some .. clue on the calendar that would've given him a heads up? A gut feeling? A message via firelizard? Today is such a normal, average day. This can't really be happening now, can it? He looks pale all of a sudden. "We'll get you changed into something a little more comfortable," says that apprentice, holding that dreaded healer gown. But Soriana definitely doesn't need much clothing for this, does she? Especially upon the parts that need to be clear for the baby! "And then, we wait." Smile! Isn't this exciting?

Soriana's got a pile of paperwork that needs to be finished. She's got things half-done where the other half is sitting in her brain, just waiting to be written down. She's got so many things… including a baby, sitting in her, waiting to be born. It's not as patient as the other things. When paperwork says urgent, it means someone will complain if it's not done. When a baby says… it's time to be born… there's a certain amount of actual urgency to the situation, because it's going to come out or else. Soriana glances to Ka'el as they're led back into the birthing area. That they're going to, because she's… giving… birth? Though presumably the baby isn't going to just… pop out. It could be hours. More, if she's particularly unlucky. The time required isn't something they can pencil in on their calendars either. It's just… happening. As it apparently does - at least the healers seem comfortable with the situation. They're kinda the only ones. Soriana's not so stunned that she doesn't give that flimsy gown a glare. Comfortable for her body? Maybe. Comfortable for her dignity? Not so much. "…rather wear riding leathers…" she mutters. And wouldn't that be a fine figure of a Soriana! Giving birth a-dragonback, like some sort of… fictional figure that never existed in reality. …sigh. She takes the gown. She'll even put on the gown, because… the baby needs a clear flight path. She does not smile. Not until she glances to Ka'el, and then… oh, it's a smile. It's the nervousest smile ever, but it still counts as a smile. Probably. "…I guess, uhm… it's… a good thing we came?"

Ka'el does not help Soriana get into that gown. That'd action would be hazardous to his health and pride, for he'd likely get such a reprimand. She's not an invalid! She can obviously handle dressing herself! He makes himself useful in other ways meanwhile…by uselessly standing. By making sure that there's water because she tends to be thirsty. He doesn't think to send any sort of word out that he may not be back for those aforementioned meetings because the world beyond these four walls is beginning to fade from his mind. There's a baby coming. So the healers say. They .. .could be wrong. Pft, the baby may be another week or two from getting here! What do they know? … A lot, actually. Any thoughts that this may be a false alarm is erased when Soriana is revealed in that gown, which makes everything seem suddenly, blazingly real. This is really happening. Like, right now. Today. In.. minutes? Hours? There's no telling with these things, but it's definitely in the works. Ka'el is by her bedside when she's ready, her nervous smile met with a smile that's just as nervous, though he's trying to keep a brave face. It's his job to keep a brave face. He's not worried. All those things that could go wrong, he's not worried about any of it. They've got this!…right? "Told you you should listen to me more.." he says with a smug little smile that momentarily masks some of those nerves. "You…okay? You need another pillow? Or…water? Or anything?" he asks as he lifts a hand to press against her forehead a little, brushing hair away.

That gown makes Soriana feel… exposed. Probably partly because… she is! It's a drafty sort of thing, one that fails to cover her butt even in the brief period before putting it on and hopping up onto the cot. …more like floundering, actually. Pregnant belly made grace hard enough even before it also involved her muscles doing things without bothering to check first if she wanted to do them! …not that she didn't want… not that she did want… uh. What the shards does she want to do with this baby? She's done with being pregnant, she knows that! Tired of it. But today is not the day she planned for… not that you can plan these things, even she knows that, but this is not the day she planned for the unplanned! "Ha," she retorts to Ka'el. "If I did that… uh…" Where would she be? …well. Here, for one. Having a baby! That trial period is going to start real soon now. Minutes. Hours. Her eyes squinch closed. "I'm…" Utterly, hideously unprepared for this moment? "…okay." This may be her least convincing one yet. Not that anything's that bad, though weird is edging its way through uncomfortable toward pain. It's just… this is the start of everything, birth and life and… her eyes fly open, look up at Ka'el. "Shells, we don't even have a name."

The question is starting to become irrelevant now. There's no possible way that she's .. actually okay, so why keep asking? Poor Ka'el. He wants to do something to help! But what is there for him to do but…be here and wait while the healers flit and go about their business and check on her? He'll smooth back her hair and kiss her cheek and fail at looking unworried. Because he is worried. He … has no business being here at all! This entire situation feels surreal. It's as if he's taken a step back and is observing someone else take control of his own body. That certainly isn't him there standing by an infirmary bed in the part of the infirmary designated for mothers and mothers to be. Maybe this whole entire thing is a dream? He'll wake up in a moment or so next to Soriana, who'll have no swollen belly, and life will continue on as it had been. Maybe. Or maybe, this day is the first day of a new type of life for them both, for if all of this is truly real, life won't ever be exactly the same ever again, will it? But, like impression…extreme change isn't always a bad thing. But, one step at a time. The baby must be delivered safely. Soriana must birth this baby and be okay herself. After all, if something happens to her … who'll help him give it a name? Her sudden realization has his brows lifting. … What an oversight on their part! "Easy. Kale if it is a boy. Kalea if it is a girl," he says without missing a beat. "Or, we could always go with Quiet or Squirmer in the meantime." A half-smile follows that as he strokes her forehead again. "..We're good with names. We'll figure out a name when…when..we see …it."

She's more okay than she could (will) be? …yeah, let's not think about that, because thinking about being less okay reduces the amount of okay. The healers have such cheery smiles. Everything's going great! Soriana's not sure she believes them, but Ka'el can… be a distraction. It's something at least vaguely useful, though there's… a limit to how much she can be distracted. Soriana doesn't wake up from the dream. Neither does Ka'el. The ceiling and walls here are still the maternity ward of the infirmary, not their own room. Instead of firelizards and tunnelcats, there's healers. Including one that's checking things exposed by that gown she changed to… at least the curtain's shut? Also, the healers still smiling at what they see, though Soriana's beginning to suspect the smiles are pasted on as a requirement to work in obstetrics. Whatever else may be going on here, it's clear this isn't a dream, and soon (she hopes) there'll be a baby. One that will need a name, and Soriana eyes Ka'el for his suggestion. It's part fuzzy-brained stare, part dubiousness, a fraction of amusement. It's the last that wins out, and she retorts, "…more like Rian or Riana." Then, she winces. That one was stronger than the rest. Or at least… the rest… before then. They're kind of getting more intense as it goes. "…but Quiet might work." Hey, she can hope, right?

Rian. Riana. Ka'el ponders the names while still pondering those healers that peek at places on his weyrmate from time to time in places that were, once upon a time, private ones. "Mm. Vague potential. Kalen, though…that's an awesome name. A strong name." Cuz you know, Ka'el breeds warriors. … How much longer now? They've only been here for…well, it hasn't been all that long, and he's ready to leave. Oooor…is he? Because now, leaving means leaving with a baby, and despite how 'ready' the tried to psyche himself to feel, the thought of leaving with a bundled up baby in tow is a level of ready that he's yet to achieve. And those winces of Soriana's are getting bigger by the minute. She's in pain! He frets, turning anxious eyes towards the senior healer. "Is there…nothingthat she can have?" he asks in a last ditch effort to get that healer to produce the magical healing potion that he knows that he has. He watches that healer a little longer, then returns his whole attention to Soriana. "We'll check a book," he says quickly. "Of names. And we'll find one that we like. One that hasn't been used a hundred times already. It'll be alright if it doesn't have one…right away. It won't know any different. We can..make sure it has one by the end've the day." Whichever day that ends up being. Thud-thud-thud, goes his heart.

What's in a name, anyway? "S-erk." No, that's not an actual suggestion. More of a wince catching the start of a name. Soriana closes her eyes for a moment as Ka'el turns away. If she just goes to sleep she'll wake up in her nice comfy bed, right? The one where it was all a dream and… yeah, not so much. The healer shakes his head to Ka'el. "We'd rather not." So it's not that the healers can't, it's just that they're being obstinate and won't! Because… "It can cause breathing problems for the baby." Healing potions, sure, they've got those. Magical ones? Not so much. Soriana mutters something under her breath, or maybe it's just part of one of those breathing exercises. They're probably written in a book, along with… names. So many names. So many names, for one little baby who's - just now - seeming far less with the little. "Gotta call it something…" Soriana insists. But that's why they've got Quiet (or Squirmer), right? Emergency backup names! …and Faranth, please let lack of name be the only emergency that happens today, as Soriana's fingers and toes curl with the contractions that are… "Doing well," that chipper healer says. "Soon you'll be ready to start!" …and uh… just what has she been doing until now?

They'd rather not? Ka'el picks up the implications of that. That means that they do have stuff that they could give her, but they're just holding out on him! Oh, this healer is lucky he's not a rider. He can feel the argument boiling up inside of him, threatening to spill over in a foamy mess, but….there's a reason why Soriana isn't getting anything, and he now knows why. Breathing problems? The baby could arrive…with no breath at all, or trouble with the lungs or whatnot. Is it worth the risk? A few moments of peace? … Definitely not. He doesn't ask the manager again, instead frowning at the bed sheets until 'baby names' penetrates his brain again. He swears by the book. Surely they'll come across something that sounds cool, for this spur of the moment thing is looking to be an utter fail. Unless…they really want to call their first born child Quiet. (And hopefully he or she will live up to its name?) Lines of worry deepen on his face as another contraction is seen, written as pain on her face. "It'll be done soon.." he says, trying to reassure her, but he's undermined by that healer who claims they haven't even started yet! .. Wait. They haven't started yet?? He looks over to the healer. "Just what does…it look like…once we've started? .. Er, what she's started.." Faranth knows he isn't doing anything worthwhile right now!

Soriana surely doesn't need those medicines badly enough yet! She can still form coherent sentences! …and when she can't? Well, she won't be able to form coherent sentences in order to ask for them. The healers have this all figured out. They… should, right? There's always new babies in the nursery, and those babies presumably came out right here. Not all of them, but… some. Weyrbabies. Like this one that's going to be coming out any… moment… now? Hopefully? Maybe? How long do these things take? Nine hours to go with the nine months? Soon. Soriana likes soon. She nods to soon. Soon she will… start? "…uh," she begins, or more like grunts. She's starting to understand why they had her practice breathing, because apparently a thing she's done since she was born is - now that she's giving birth - vaguely challenging and something she's easily distracted from. She reaches a hand for Ka'el's, because she needs to crush… er, hold… it. So he can't escape, while this baby works to escape her body. The healer smiles, pats reassuringly at Ka'el's shoulder. "Once the cervix is dilated." It's more of those magical healer words that talk about things only the healers know. How will they know? (Other than a healer telling them?) The shoulder-patting healer moves on to Soriana. "When you want to push." And then? The healer moves on! Abandons them! Only for a moment, admittedly. He'll be back soon to check on things, and again to check on things, and… well… when healers say soon, they really should add a relatively, and by the time the 'soon' of 'starting' arrives, Soriana has definitely lost track of time. She gains some new forms of profanity, though! Even if the healers have heard it all before and are unflustered as Soriana discovers the existence of negative numbers on the 'okay' scale.

Nine hours? Could the process take so long? Noe one ever told Ka'el the amount of time labor can last, if there such as thing as an average number. But …surely someone would've mentioned it to him if it could drag on for hours and hours…right? Or maybe that's one of those 'pleasant surprises' that he has to discover himself. The only one who really knows when little baby Rian or Kalea will make their debut to the world are the babies themselves! And…they're not talking. So Ka'el can only wait. Just like Soriana can only wait and the healers can only wait for whatever green light indication that the main event has finally started. Seeing the movement of Soriana's hand reaching for his own, he grasps for it, fingers curling around hers to hold on to her hand with a firm grip. Heh. Firm, but not as firm as the circulation-restricting squeezes she's giving him! Ow..owwww… If crushing his hand helps, then by all means, crush it! He's not complaining. He's busy trying to figure out 'cervix' and 'dilate’ meanings. Did he miss those lessons on the female anatomy? … Did he ever get a lesson on the female anatomy? (his own hands-on studies don't quite count in this situation). He doesn't ask for clarification of those words. It doesn't really matter if he knows them or not because that's not going to change the course of today. Soriana is having a baby! And, having a baby…hurts. -.-; If his poor hand is any indication, it hurts quite a bit. Ka'el has grown pale. Is this normal?? The healers don't seem to be worried as the string of profanity leaves her mouth and pain seems to suddenly dominate the room. He keeps his crushed hand in hers though, not going anywhere! Even though…a part of him wants to run. But he can't abandon her. He won't abandon her, and thus throughout the sounds of pain, he remains, murmuring words of encouragement, echoing the assurances of the healers. You're doing great. Shardin' fantastic.

If people told the prospective parents some of these details while there was still time to back away… there'd be a lot more hops between, 'accidental' and otherwise! But no, this is a voyage of discovery that Ka'el and Soriana get to have for themselves. The healers are here, but they know what's supposed to be happening, and they're not worried. Not for any of it, even when Soriana's crushing Ka'el's hand and giving the sort of glare that promises that someone is going to be very, very sorry just as soon as she can get up off this bed and deal with them. She's not sure who. She's not sure what. But there's something, and it'll be done. Ka'el's here holding her hand. Luraoth's curled in the clearing nearby. Toral, at some point, starts popping back and forth between sitting on that potted plant in the corner. Soriana… pushes and curses and breathes (sometimes), and the healers get progressively more interested in the details of just how she's doing until… "There!" It's out! A genuine baby, who's living and breathing and… pink. Very pink, in the first glimpse to be had. Soriana doesn't manage coherent words. More an incoherent pant, but it's better than more profanity. Things are obviously better in general. Her hand's stopped crushing Ka'el. The baby's out. That senior apprentice is there with a clean cloth, something between a towel and a blanket. Something for the healer to wrap the baby in with swift and practiced motions, quickly enough that the kid barely has time for a first wail before the healer's bringing it around to the two of them, to the sweaty, exhausted Soriana who looks to see the baby - still pink-faced, with curled-up fingers and squinched eyes. The healer extends the infant. "It's a boy."

There's a lot a commotion here suddenly. A lot of activity and movement and … and pushing. A lot of pushing on Soriana's part. And Ka'el is in the middle of it all. What is his role here? Soriana's doing the work. The healers have positioned themselves down where they need to be to monitor and guide and … do whatever needs to be done down in those nether regions. And Ka'el is an extra body in the room. A very nervous, deer-in-headlights sort of body. Whaaaaat has he gotten himself in to?! Why did he agree to be in here? (ha! as if he had any other choice) As he looks at her now, face distorted with pain and effort, it's easy to come to the conclusion that he'll never, ever, put her through this again. Nope! No more touching. Hell, maybe separate beds are in order? A chastity belt for Soriana! Sounds like a plan, right? Sure. They'll sort out the details of their new celibate life later. Right now.. There's noise. And panting. And loudness. And sweating. And 'Just one more push!'. And…eventually…it's over. The pressure on his hand lessens. His heart continues to race, but at the sound of a new voice in the room, it sort of .. stops. A baby's voice. A little wail combined with the sudden sight of Xanadu's newest little resident. Ka'el… blinks. He only has the capacity to blink, for now. Blink…and stare. That little person wasn't here a moment ago, and now…here it is. Here…he is. A boy? His eyes swing to the healer at the announcement, then back to his new son with a wide eyed look of awe. He has a son? He swallows, mouth dry. "We … We have a boy." His voice sounds different, even to himself. As if it's coming from a far off place as opposed his own mouth. The baby is being given to them because…well, he's their child, this unnamed little guy. And Ka'el, hesitant for just a moment, reaches to take him, if not just a little awkwardly. This baby is far smaller than the 'practice babies' he held in the nursery. Those babies were months old. This one… mere minutes. He looks down at his scrunched little face, his own expression betraying wonder. They made this small person. He moves closer to Soriana's bedside, his every motion extremely careful, to hand him over to her. Her son, nine months in the making.

The healers have almost as much to do as Soriana, only they can take breaks. Even once the baby's done being born, there's more for them to do. Cleanup and… stuff. Soriana can mostly ignore it, at that point, and she's happy to do so. Well. To tell the truth, she's not thinking about it. What she is thinking about is… that… there's a baby. A her baby. Her… son. Ka'el's son. Their son, this little baby boy who… will need a name. He's already disqualified himself from 'Quiet' with that wail of his. Ka'el takes his son, and the healer goes back down to finish … whatever his healer things are. They're not important. (Not right now.) What's important is that the baby looks up at Ka'el with unfocused eyes, opens his mouth for another, uncertain wail that tapers off as his father speaks. That voice. It sounds vaguely familiar. It's not the voice, the one that vibrated down through his body, but he's… heard that voice before. Somewhere, back when everything was dark and warm and not so bright and confusing. It's odd enough that for a moment, the baby forgets to cry, just stares up at Ka'el with blue eyes. Baby blues. Soriana… stares too, watching as Ka'el brings her… their son. She reaches for him, careful. She's not going to drop him, not after nine months and nine hours (because if it wasn't, it sure felt like it) of working to bring him into the world. She's… "Shards." There it is. The voice! The baby makes a little gurgle that will - someday - be a laugh. Right now it's just a baby sound. Soriana stares at him. She looks up at Ka'el. She looks back to the baby, in her arms - held against her chest. He'll be hungry (being born is hard work), and in a moment, if they don't figure it out on their own, a healer will come help with that. For now, though… "We do." Soriana's back to staring at the baby.

…They have a son. A son with his eyes. A son with hair matted from birth. A son with a face that Ka'el already is eager to see more of. A baby boy that, somehow, his heart has already fallen for. Soriana has him now, and Ka'el has to walk away. He can't stay still. Not for a second longer. That full heart of his feels like it'll burst at any minute if he doesn't move, and so he does. He moves from her beside with a jack o lantern's grin on his face, relief washing over him like a wave. Everything is fine! The baby is fine. Soriana is fine. THe disasters that could've happened didn't, and to show for it, they have a little boy who seems just..fine. Healthy and pink and…here. His grin widens, if that's even possible, and he approaches the nice apprentice and bombards her with a hug. "I have a son!" he bursts, (you know, just in case she missed the news). The poor girl looks momentarily startled but soon enough laughs while patting the new father on the back. "Congratulations, Weyrleader!" she chirps, seemingly genuinely happy for them both. This is why she likes maternity care! Happy people! (usually) Kanekith, who resides on the star stones with the watchdragon, trumpets triumphantly, sharing his rider's joy. And it is joy that they both of them feel, and thus a joyful noise emits from the resident bronze, loud and happy, with rolling feelings of pride accompanying it. Back in the infirmary, Ka'el would embrace the healer as well and clap him heartily on the back before returning to Soriana with his Cheshire cat grin. He kisses her forehead, sweat and all, and her cheek, and then stares at the little bundle that she holds and feeds. "…He's so small.." he says, reaching out just one finger to lightly graze against his cheek. "…Shards, Soriana, you did this. You were amazing. You.." Now, he touches her cheek, again smoothing back damp strands of hair from her face, "are amazing."

Ka'el can spread the news. Soriana… isn't sure she could manage that walking thing just now, but that's okay, because she doesn't have to. She's got to move her hands enough to adjust things and… is that right? How about that? Shardit, she'd think the baby could… oh. There. That's how it is, and the baby's content with eating until he falls asleep. He'll be doing a lot of that, these next few weeks. Soriana… probably won't be, but for the moment, she's okay with that. She hears Ka'el (and Kanekith) carol their joy, but she's watching the baby. Ka'el has a son! Soriana… has a son. She smiles at Ka'el's return, at the kisses, and tilts her head up to look at him. She's got the baby well enough that she's not going to drop him just be doing that… and she doesn't. Baby task one: accomplished. It's not so hard yet. Tunnelcats are more troublesome than this. She laughs a little. "It… only half seems real." Probably part of that is because she's still full of all the various brain chemicals and hormones her body flung about to tell her that it was baby time and let her survive the experience… but part of it is because this is a big change. One they've been preparing for, sure, but preparing for isn't the same as having it (him) actually be here and in her arms and… "I mean… he's here… but…" Maybe it's not too late for it to all be a dream?

Ka'el leans against her bed, getting as close as he can without actually climbing in with her and the baby. He's…asleep? Well, being born is hard work! The poor guy is probably worn out. Ka'el can't blame him for chowing down and snoozing, and he's finding it hard to keep his eyes off of him even as he sleeps. Even without Kanekith's boasting, his pride is obvious. That's his boy there! With tiny fingers and hidden toes and bright eyes he saw only for a moment. A nose which, to him, looks similar to Soriana's in shape. Other than the physical, he's a bundle of mystery. His personality will emerge eventually. Right now, his wants are the simple things. To be fed and comfortable (and dry). But will he be a troublesome boy? Will he be the rambunctious type that comes home after a day of play with new scrapes and bumps and bruises every day? Will he be quiet and shy, the type who'll need to be prodded in to coming out of his shell? Will he be a leader? A follower? Ambitious? All those things will develop in time, molded by parents (or fosters…) and whatever inherited characteristics he has. "Half real. Feels like a dream. It's felt like a dream since we got here." His finger strokes a tiny cheek, and he half smirks. Kanekith croons. "At least we can stop calling him an 'it'. He's here…" he nods in confirmation, "..and now that I see him…now that I've held him, I know he's ours. We'll make this work because he's our boy." He pauses to watch her and the subtle little movements done by their newborn. "You look good with him.." he comments with a wondrous smile. "You look.. like a mother."

Ka'el is looming! …that's okay. He gets to loom a bit. This is his baby too, as proven by the crushed hand and also the blue eyes, now closed to doze. The boy'll wake soon enough! Probably because he's hungry again. Probably. It's not like he'll be able to tell them, but they can figure it out by trial and error… hopefully. From here, things get easier and harder. Easier, as the boy grows, as he learns how to ask for what he wants and take care of himself. Harder, as he learns how to say no and get into trouble! But… this isn't a dream, for all it feels like one. For all Soriana nods to Ka'el as he says that, with a crooked sort of smile in return. Luraoth's quieter about her celebrations, subdued in echo of Soriana's fatigue, but between the two dragons the Weyr should have little doubt of what's transpired in here, in the infirmary where they've still got their pocket of soothing colors and that one plant. "Heh." Soriana looks down at their… son, again. Not an it! Bronze potential, if… he grows up with the sensitivity and leadership qualities for the job. Which he might or might not, and either way's just fine. They'll discover that as part of the journey taken by the child and… his parents. (Or fosters, but…) Theirs. They'll make it work. Soriana's mouth curves up on one side, a wry twitch for Ka'el's assertion… but… she doesn't argue with it. She doesn't have a reason why not or that it won't or any of that. She just half-smiles, worn halfway to exhaustion and… holding their son. Maybe she's just too worn to say anything? But no, because then her mouth curves the rest of the way into a smile. She looks like a mother, huh? "That's because I am." Duh. There's a smirk for Ka'el, but she looks down to their son and it softens into a different sort of smile. "…suppose you won't be saying mama for a while yet," she tells him. Not that he'd understand the words… even if he wasn't asleep… but still. "You will. And we'll call you…" Hmm. It's the lingering question. The thing that needs to be filled in before this moment feels complete, just like it'll need to be filled into a record book sooner or later.

She is, isn’t she? She is a mother! And Ka’el is a father, and just a few moments ago .. he wasn’t. He was just Ka’el. Weyrleader of Xanadu. Weyrmate of Soriana. Former smith. Future smith. Just your run-of-the-mill guy who now seems to miraculously have everything. He’s got the girl, the dragon, the big fancy knot, and now this tiny little life who, although small, takes up a big space in his heart. And he’s only known him for moments! Minutes. Not even a full candlemark, and yet he wants to be with him, always. Ka’el settles himself down onto the bedside chair, scooting it close so that he can still see the boy and touch Soriana. Slowly does his hand stroke her arm as she speaks to their new family member, smirking at her words to him. The baby may not yet understand them, but … he’ll know their voices, right? Voices he’s heard since even before he came into this world. And he’ll know their voices beyond now, won’t he? Even if at some point, someone else may come and take him away and claim him as their son in a way, he’ll still know his voice and Soriana’s voice as the voices of his mother and father? Mama and daddy. Mom and dad. Whatever it is they’ll end up being labeled as, the two of them will be his special ones, right? His parents. No one else can claim that, no matter what happens in the days and weeks to come. No one else can claim him, their little… nameless one. Ka’el’s eyes lift from the baby to settle on Soriana’s face as she trails off. He has no name. It didn’t matter much to him before, but now that he’s here…how can they leave him nameless, if even for a day? The silence stretches as thought prevails. What name is deserving of this awesome little boy? “..Kyle?” he suggests with vaguely lifted brows. “..The world could always use another Kale,” he adds with a smirk.

They've gained another pair of titles for their ever-growing list. Soriana. Junior Weyrwoman of Xanadu. Weyrmate of Ka'el. Dragonhealer grade two. Mother to… uh. This baby boy who still doesn't actually have a name. She looks to him as he sleeps, as Ka'el settles down to rest her feet. The baby's born, but Soriana isn't rushing to get out of the infirmary just yet. That would involve standing. Besides, she has other things to do. Important things, like staring at their baby and… wondering what to call him. Kyle gets a considering look to cross her face, but then Soriana smirks back and shakes her head at the second suggestion. "I'm not tacking a junior on." No Kale junior, the son of a junior Weyrwoman! Even if, technically, it'd be Kale, son of Ka'el who used to be called Kale before he… impressed. What if this boy did that? Bronzebait or not (and really, it's awfully early to be thinking about any of that), the aunties have bent her ear on more than one occasion about how it's important to give boys names that can be properly shortened. Kale's not a very good name for that. Neither's Kyle, and besides, it's basically just Kale with the vowel changed… which is okay as far as it goes, but it's lacking a certain something. A certain… Soriana… something. There's two of them that went into making this baby! One in the other and… "…Skyler."

Aw, no Kale junior? That's just as well. Things would get confusing around the weyr with two Kales running amuck (for it's highly likely that Ka'el will run amuck with his son whenever the boy is old enough to go amuck running). Kale, don't do that! Kale, come over here! Kale, no! … All of those phrases are applicable to either a child or a weyrmate. So. No Kale Jr., son of a Jr. Weyrwoman. He grins for that while he nods in agreement, though he still has hope for Kyle. Kyle sounds like Kale, and it continues the tradition of K-named sons. But … that tradition is for another family. One that he no longer is wholly a part of. True, baby Kale might definitely meet uncle Kei'lan once he gets wind of this, but…as for Uncle Kage, Kord, Kerrick, and…Kinden? And grandma and grandpa? And numerous Black Rock cousins? … Maybe the naming tradition is one that doesn't really belong to him. That family isn't his anymore. This family? This family of two plus himself definitely is his own, and thus new traditions can be born. Traditions of naming children..together. Skyler. His eyes drop back down to the slumbering newborn after she speaks it. "Skyler…" He tries it on for size, and with his next exhale a grin is formed. "Skyler," he says again, this time with a nod. "Our son's name is Skyler." And thus it shall be in the records, marking this day as the day Skyler was born. He leans up to press a kiss to Soriana's cheek, fond and lingering. "You okay?"

Kale, don't eat that. Kale, use your words. Kale, that's not a toy! …yeah, they really do work for either one. So, it's good thing the younger of the Crestwoods here at Xanadu won't be given that name! He'll be named… something different. He's… only sort of a Crestwood, anyway. It's not like the rest of the Crestwood clan would recognize him. Kei'lan would. Uncle Kei'lan will surely drop in (as he does) and say hello. He'll probably bring random gifts with equally random stories, because that's what he does. The rest, though? … maybe they'll come around eventually. Some of them. Kinden… won't. Soriana's not going to let forgiveness go that far, but if the grandparents on that side wanted to make an appearance… because they somehow broke their self-enforced wall of separation and heard about it… she might let them. If they ever do, but… that's not something to worry about right now. This boy of theirs will be giving Ka'el and Soriana more than enough to worry about! This boy… Skyler. Soriana looks up at Ka'el as he says it, considers how it sounds when she's hearing it instead of saying it. She nods, looks back to their son. "Skyler." It's a name formed in much the same way hers was - Soriana, daughter of Sorrin and S'iad - but not quite the same. Her father never got involved. Ka'el is involved, will be yet more so in the days to come. Soriana's not doing this alone, and this little cluster of three is a family. Was a family, but now it's a family of weyrmates and a child. It's different, somehow, in a way she can't quite put her finger on but feels is true. Maybe what she feels is the rise and fall of little Skyler's breathing, held in her arms. Maybe what she feels is Ka'el's kiss to her cheek. She smiles to him. "Yeah," she says. "I am." She doesn't give him a number. Maybe she figures the smile is answer enough, or maybe she's just forgotten. "…tired, though." The haze of endorphins does many wonderful things, but it can't do everything.

Tired? "Shards, that's probably the understatement of the turn, Soriana. You did all this. You grew him. Kept'm safe for months. Kept'm fed and made him healthy." Following all of those restrictive rules and suggestions given by the healers who knew more than the both of them combined. "He's perfect because've you." Her and all of her agonizing efforts. "If I were you, I'd be exhausted." He brushes a strand of hair away once more just as the apprenticefrom before makes a reapperance. The healer's work is done. The baby is here, deemed healthy and intact. Cleanup has been performed. And now it's monitor time before the three of them can be sent on their way when ready! Seasoned senior apprentices like her can monitor and answer questions and bring things that are needed, like the wooden crib she rolls in now, carrying with her a smile. "Heeey," she whispers, smile still intact and eyes beaming. "Ma'am, you'll need to stay a while longer, okay? For observation. It's only protocol. You did wonderfully!" she praises, voice still a whisper but the excitement is there. "If you want, he can rest with you in here," a gesture to the crib, "until he wakes for a feeding. I can help you with that, if you need it." Nothing like having another woman manhandle your breasts for you! Ka'el's eyes go from apprentice to Soriana. "I can put him in," he offers, "so you can rest."

"Heh." Soriana smiles for the understatement and for Ka'el's flattery. She might be shuddering in terror if she realized that - from here - she's probably going to get even less sleep as she works to make sure Skyler stays safe and fed and… he… is healthy, right? Soriana looks to the baby with a brief flicker of concern. He looks… okay to her. He was wriggling before, in an uncoordinated baby sort of way. He had eyes and they looked at things in an… unfocused baby sort of way. Besides, if anything were really truly wrong, the healers would have said something. There'd be qualified healers here with serious faces instead of one smiling senior apprentice. One who suggests she… stays here? Soriana arches a brow, but… well… it's not like this bed is that uncomfortable. To her tired body, it's better than trying to stand up! And she can - right now - forgive the healers for all those 'just one more!' lies they told her. Yay, endorphins! So, despite the arched brow, the apprentice gets some smile as well. "Could you bring me some water?" she asks. It's not even a plot to get the healer to leave so she can sneak out! It's just that she's thirsty, along with being tired. She might even manage to stay awake to drink that water! …maybe. She nods to Ka'el, lifting Skyler toward him… carefully. Just how soundly do babies sleep? They'll be finding out the answer to that question - and more! - over the coming weeks. They'll be finding out answers to questions they didn't know they even had, and demanding more of that wisdom from healers and chattery old aunties alike, but for now… all is well in their family, and Soriana - and Skyler - can rest.

Water? Sure, she can get that! The apprentice makes sure that the portable crib is securely in place, brakes set, before she heads off to get that water for the junior Weyrwoman. What a pleasant experience this has turned out to be! None of the lamenting of 'What do I do noooow?' of a mother with a baby with a father that will never be met. Or the accusations of a father who is quite sure the baby looks nothing at all like him. Weyrlife tends to be eventful in unexpected ways, but every so often there is a quiet happy ending, or in this case a happy beginning of more smiles than there are frowns and a child who is welcomed by his parents. The apprentice is happy for that. Skyler is fortunate. He gets a trail period! Not that he knows that his stay with his parents is only a planned trial of an unnamed number of days. All he knows is contentment, for now. Contentment as he is passed from mother's arms to father's. Contentment as he is held securely against a broad chest, snug within his blanket. Ka'el smiles, still stunned at how light the child feels. Skyler. He doesn't put him in his crib immediately and instead reclaims his seat once he has him in his possession. He's not tired. In fact, he's wide awake, still pumped from the delivery. He'll hold their child while Soriana rests, memorizing his face, watching his little motions that he makes. There's still so much that Ka'el has to do. Even more now that Skyler is here. Word to be sent about cancelled meetings. His workload to be shifted to the Weyrsecond. Knots that she'll have to deliver for him. But that can wait. He's not going anywhere now, and he'll let Soriana rest while he keeps watch over their son. Til he wakes. Til he cries for milk. Then the fun of parenting a newborn can really begin.

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