Tunnelsnake Round-up

Xanadu Weyr - Store Room

This large storeroom is lit with a series of electric lights, illuminating the smooth cut walls. Rows of shelving contain all sorts of items, while large trunks contain all sorts of clothing, and a mix-matched variety of furniture is stacked up in one corner.

Kire is standing with others as a gnarled old man who's missing two fingers on each hand although not the same fingers. He has an eyepatch over his left eye and he walks with a pronounced limp. "Glad you all could make it. I'm Holbart. I've been hired to get rid of the tunnelsnake problem that's infesting this Weyr. You are gonna break up into teams of three and we are going to search every inch of this storage cavern. You all will break up into teams of three or four. One of you will move the stuff, the others will hit the tunnelsnakes with the sticks I'll be handing out and the last will be carrying a basket to put the tunnelsnakes in. If you don't have thick gloves and thick boots I suggest you go get them now you'll need them." Kire looks around to see who's here who he can team up with.

Rogawani looks as if he is going to war. He's borrowed a pair of oversized work boots and gloves from one of the smithcrafters, and his usual riding pants are replaced with what look like a rider's flight pants. His normal jackget is buttoned up tight and his messy hair is even squashed beneath an oversized dragonrider's helmet. "I hate tunnelsnakes." He whispers to himself, but stands as strait as possible, fingers clenching and unclenching in the gloes as he looks towards the haggard looking old man. "Probably had tunnelsnakes eat his fingers, too." He murmurs, shivering and then giving a glance around the room at the others gathered.

Myra is on her way to the kitchens when she catches the commotion around the store room, and frowns. She sneaks in at the rear, and blinks a little at the gathering. "I'll… take a basket." she offers, with a slight frown. Not really a heavy lifter type, and she'd /rather/ not have to fight snakes. There's a glance shot sideways to Rogawani, with an amused blink at the messenger's oversized gear. She seems quite comfortable with just a chef's apron over normal clothes, though she does tend to wear boots normally anyway.

Kire moves over to Myra and Rogawani, "Hey Rogawani. I'll be a striker if you want to be the lifter. I don't think a dozen tunnelsnakes could get through that. Now we just need someone to take the basket." Holbart comes around and he gives Kire a stick, "Here you go." He nods to Rogawani, "I'm glad that someone is taking this seriously." He eyes Kire who's just wearing thick gloves and thick boots, "At least you can't naked boy." The gnarled old man works his way through the group and he offers Myra a basket, "Here you go, there are two boys that need a basket holder." He points to Kire and Rogawani before he hands her a stick, "Here you'll need one of these too."

"Hey Kire." Rogawani manages, pushing the helmet up slightly on his forehead. He only looks slightly less silly than Xaliyan and his rider helmet. "Sure, less hands-on I have to be with them the better." He doesn't comment to the scary looking old man, giving a small wince as he's spoken to. Luckily Myra draws his attention from the one-eyed man, and he offers a nervous half-smile that only looks that much more goofy with all of his 'armor'. "Thanks for the help, rider. I'll try to keep them away from you if I can." He tries to stand a bit taller, pretending to have far more bravery than he actually feels.

Myra takes the basket from the man and quickly tucks it under one arm for now, then takes the stick and brandishes it experimentally, whacking at the air a couple of times to get the feel of it. "Hmm, hmm. Okay." she murmurs, nodding at the old man briefly, before moving over to Kire and Rogawani. She actually seems reasonably comfortable with the stick, though it remains to be seen how she'll feel when there's snakes about. The woman, a former Weyrlingmaster, eyes Rogawani up and down, then oh so casually notes, "We can switch in a bit, if you'd rather the basket." She's seen her fair share of weyrlings pretending they could do things they really didn't think they could do.

Kire hefts the stick as he gets it and takes a few practice swings. He sees the rider come over and he stops swinging, "Hello rider. I'm Apprentice Kire it's nice to meet you." He nods in agreement. "I'm pretty quick moving out of the way. I had to dodge Cenlia's shovel when she and I were hunting tunnelsnakes in the garden." Since it seems that everyone had grouped up Holbart clears his throat so that everyone will be quite, "All right I'm going to demonstrate what we are going to do." With his two assistants the trio moves over to one of the boxes. One of the assistants picks up the box and there is a large tunnelsnake. Holbart slams the stick he has down on it's head with pinpoint accuracy and a sickening crunch fills the Storage Cavern. The other assistant grabs the dead tunnelsnake behind the head and puts it the basket. Holbart turns back to the group, "That's how you do it. Grab the tunnelsnake behind the back of the head incase it isn't dead. Give it a second whack on top of the head if you think you need to." He looks around, "Anyone have any questions?"

"I'll be fine, ma'am. No worries." Rogawani answers, rubbing at his hands together and offering the best smile he can manage. "It's better for me to be the mover, anyways. Less direct interaction with snakes." A nervous chuckle follows as he watches the assistant picks up the tunnelsnake and puts it into the basket. His face shows only half-controlled disgust. Turning his eyes away from the sight, he looks more to Kire to make sure that the 'whacker' knows what he's supposed to be doing. "You ready for this, Kire?" He asks of the starcrafter, "There's no Cenlia and her shovel, so you'll just have to depend on us." Rocking his arms back and forth to loosen the tension in his shoulders, Ro' seems all too ready to get the hunt overwith.

Myra nods a little at the instructions. "Just like when they used to get in the grain silo, back in the hold. Nothing worse than snake in the grain silo." She snorts. "After a while though, they got fat. Easier to catch. Couple ate till they exploded." She chuckles at that. Ah, fond childhood memories? Apparently. "Not so bright, snakes." Well, /that/ variety of snake, anyway. There are different snakes, and that demonstrative snake was certainly … large. She gives a nod to Rogawani, chuckling softly. "Probably a wise call. If you want to switch though, you just let me know?" she murmurs, before readying the basket for incoming snakes, whacking stick at the ready.

Holbart speaks up, "If you get bitten come back here immediately. There is healer on hand who will see to your injuries. Some of the tunnelsnakes can be poisonous, so be careful. If there is nothing else happy hunting." He sends the groups off to search the storage cavern. The group breaks up into smaller group that start to search for tunnelsnakes. Kire smiles at the other two, "Well let's head over towards that pile of furs. I'm sure there is probably a whole bunch of them in there." He has his stick ready to whack any tunnelsnake that they might come across. "Yah they are fast, but you just have to be faster. Watch for any movement when we get closer. I know that they tended to move before I took the flower pot off them. It might be the same way here."

The look on Rogawani's face is priceless as he stares at Myra's comments about hunting tunnelsnakes in grain silos. His jaw even drops a little as she mentions them exploding from overeating. "I am so glad that I've never had to work near a grain silo." His face pales slightly, but it's more from the story than from the upcoming hunt. Clearing his throat, and giving a small snuffle through his nose, the boy claps his hands together and then looks towards Kire. "Right, furs." Being the one doing the moving, Ro' takes the lead, approaching slowly and keeping his ears perked. Reaching for the top fur, the moment he lifts it from the stack there is a rustling sound. "Better get ready Kire, there's definitely some in here…" Setting the first fur aside, he lifts a second fur, and right beneath it is curled tunnelsnake, hissing loudly as it uncoils.

Myra chuckles softly, and shakes her head. "Ah, it's not so bad. Grain-fed snakes are alright, if you really /stew/ them." /Everything/ can be stewed, that's her philosophy. "I'll cook up a batch once we're done here, you'll see." Yep. Partly an attempt at a pep talk, but mostly just dinner planning. As they move over to the furs, Myra glances at the first snake, then watches Kire carefully, stick at the ready in case the snake slips past.

Kire wrinkles his nose, "Oh that would be just freaky trying to hunt them in a grain silos. Were they full or empty." He shivers, "Ugh having them all under your feet just moving around." Kire makes a face, "Eew you ate them…that's so gross!" He heads over to the furs as there are shrieks and the sounds of thwacking. "I got one!" "Me too!" "Die you sharding tunnelsnakes!" Can be heard through out the cavern as other groups have bagged their first tunnelsnakes. Kire focuses as the furs start to be lifted and he's ready, "All right lift the next one." He says as he holds his stick up. As the tunnelsnake is uncovered he aims for the head and with a quick whack to the head stuns the snake before he hits it again. That one finishes it, "Well one down…do you wanna keep searching the furs?" He asks as he looks to Myra to pick up the snake.

Thea enters the Storage Room and pulls up short just inside the door as she sees all the chaos, thwacking and screaming. Her eyes dart here and there, taking it all in. "Shards and shells, what have I stepped into?" She's not really dressed for a battle with tunnelsnakes, wearing light linen blouse and trous, which are tucked into the tops of her hide boots. She half-turns to go, then mutters, "Faranth. No I'll just get it now." Maybe the snakes will stay away from her as they flee? She moves towards an area off to the side where clothing is kept folded on the shelves.

Doing his best not to lose what little lunch he's had at the prospect of tunnelsnake stew, Rogawani just keeps holding on to the fur, his other gloved hand govering his mouth. He gives a muffled grunt of agreement to Kire's comment about it being gross. He freezes in place, watching as the snake is dispatched. He only lets out a breath once the snake stops moving. Setting the fur to the side with those already checked through, he nods a bit to Kire. "If there's one, there's probably more, we should probably finish fishing through them just incase." A small squeek has snuck it's way into his voice. He's a little more hesitant with the next few furs, although those don't seem to yield any results. However, when the last fur in the stack is lifted, a second tunnelsnake comes into view. This one, however, is curled around a nest of three small eggs. Protectively, it lashes towards the armored messenger, missing as he steps back and falls butt-first into the stack of already checked furs.

Myra shrugs a little at Kire, "Usually full, or at least half. We wore /boots/, naturally." she shakes her head a little, and moves forward. "Well, the snakes ate the /grain/, wasn't like we had too much else to be eating." she says with a shrug, as she leans in to scoop the snake up in the basket. "We ran a grain hold, had a couple of wherries for eggs, and a herdbeast for milking, but not for eating. Any meat was welcomed." she notes, with a shrug. "You boys are such /girls/, honestly. Nothing wrong with a good honest /st—" Tunnelsnake with eggs? Attaaack! She's closest, having scooped up the other, so she just starts bashing at the snake, smashing the eggs for good measure. It's obvious she was surprised though, as her movements were chaotic, uncontrolled, and she's now heaving for breath a little bit. All the excitement, and she hasn't even noticed Thea come in just yet.

Holbart spots the Weyrwoman and he moves over towards her. "Just what are you doing here Missy? This area has been cordoned off if you aren't in the right gear. These folded clothes haven't been searched yet you could be in danger." A reptilian head pops out from the stack of folded clothes and one of Holbart's maimed hands flash out to grab it around the neck. "I gotcha you little sucker." It appears the only thing faster then a tunnelsnake is a grouchy old tunnelsnake hunter. He snaps it's neck right in front of the weyrwoman, "Stand back Missy." He drops the dead snake into the basket his assistant is holding. "Don't worry we'll search these for you." The assistant starts to move the folded clothing.

Kire shakes his head a little bit, "Ugh, that just has to be freaky…I bet it was dark too." He frowns, "I am not! I'd eat tunnelsnake stew…if I had to. I bet it takes like roasted wherry." He laughs, 'Then again what doesn't?" He is ready as the last fur is taken away. He hits the snake after Myra does killing it for good measure and breaking one the eggs open. The gooey insides get all over the floor and Kire reaches down to help scoop up the splattered eggs, "Are you all right Rogawani?" There is more calls coming from the storage cavern. "I got another one!" "Ouch! One just bit me!" "There's a whole nest over here!"

Thea just blinks at the man as he snaps the tunnelsnake like a twig in her face. "No problem, I'll just take the stacks after you search them." She holds her arms out to take the clothing. "Thanks." She moves into an empty alcove and places the pile on an empty counter. "Just put them in here after you've gone through them," she tells the assistant. She is riffling through the clothing there, checking the sizes when a loud whomp draws her attention. With her fingers stuck in the layer to keep her place, she stretches backwards and pokes her head out to see what made it. She spots Rogawani sitting on a pile of furs, and his expression is such that she must ask, "Rogawani? You okay?" Then Myra's yelling and attacking and it's a sight to behold. Thea's lips quirk into a grin, which she bites. Not gonna snicker, must not, will not… She pulls her head back into the alcove and resumes her search amongst the clothing. If anyone is close they might hear her soft chuckling coming from in there.

"I am not a girl." Rogawani squeeks from his spot atop the furs, clearing his throat enough to cause it to shift back to it's normal tones. "I'd try it, but it's probably not as good as herdbeast." Talking quietly and trying not to get too shocked from the snake having lunged at him. Speaking up as to answer some of the other calls, "We got a nest too, three eggs and a snake dead." His head turns as his name is mentioned, blinking at Thea. "I'm… I'm fine Weyrwoman, what are you doing here?" He pushes himself up slowly, and looks over at Kire. "Eh, well we finished off that stack, what next?" He asks, looking between the starcrafter and the surprised rider, trying to get his own pulse under control with a few deep breaths.

Myra takes a moment to catch her breath, then smirks a little at Kire. "Not afraid of the dark, are you? Little slithery snakes hissing in the darkness, hisss, hisss." Oh, she is /enjoying/ this. "/Anything/ is good with the right seasoning." she says to Rogawani, before scooping up the mother snake and crushed eggs into the basket, then straightening up. "Why, you may already have had my /exquisite/ tunnelsnake stew and simply not known about it." Okay, that's not even remotely possible, because tunnelsnake /does/ tend to taste awful. She could make it edible, and does, but not even close to delicious. She blinks over as someone asks if Rogawani is okay, peering briefly at Thea, then going back to looking for tunnelsnakes with a shrug. "Everything's fine here, weyrwoman." she says, actually slightly … cheerful? Huh. Lately when she's been seen about, she's been rather more zombie-like, like she's not getting enough sleep.

Kire smiles as the eggs are put into the basket too, "How about over there among the empty pots? There's gotta be some in there. You could turn the pots over and dump any that come out." He heads over towards the pottery and he looks over at Myra, "I'm a starcrafter, I spend much of my time in the dark. Granted it's outside and not in an enclosed area with hissing tunnelsnakes, but I'm certainly not afraid of it." He has his stick ready for he first one that Rogawani tips over ready to hit. A couple of them rattle as the group gets closer and there is even a warning hiss. "Looks like we are looking in the right place." More voices can be heard, "Theradoram! They were just babies did you have to kill them?!" "Yes Persua. They were tunnelsnakes!" "Shut up you two! Ah! Get that one it's huge!" There is some crashing and clanging of breakables.

Thea can't help but be curious, all those sounds of mayhem, snakes being smacked and eggs squishing can really be tempting to watch, after all. She steps to the entrance, resting one forearm on the frame above her left shoulder to watch. In response to Rogawani's question, she holds up a light-weave linen shirt, "Need more summer-weather clothes. Sands are too hot for leathers." Myra draws a smile, "Good to hear it." The breakage and messy floor cause the weyrwoman to frown, green eyes flashing a bit of irritation. She eyes Holbart, lips unsmiling. "They clean whatever they mess up. And pay for what they break." Pulling back into the alcove there's a bit of muttering, "Shardin' animals wreaking havoc in the Weyr!" Grumblegrumble. Someone has had it.

Wiggling his nose slightly, Rogawani doesn't deny his fear of little slithering things in the dark, but at least he's facing his fears unlike some others. "The dark, no. Snakes, yes." Pulling his gloves up slightly, he looks towards the rider. "I grew up spending time in the stables. When a snake got in there, runners tended to spook and people got hurt." He doesn't comment further on the tunnelsnake stew, instead stepping towrads the pots that Kire pointed out. The warning hiss is enough to cause him to pause, reaching out with the toe of one oversized boot and nudging at what he thinks is the offending pottery. When a second hiss sounds, he takes a deep breath and reaches over, keeping his head as far back as possible as his hands grip the base of the pot. Then, with a quick motion he turns it upside down, dropping the snake out onto the ground. Alarmed, the snake hisses and lunges at the boy's leg, biting down. Luckily, the thick leathers prevent the bite from getting through, but it does leave the messenger with a tunnelsnake wriggling viciously from his leg. Color drains form him, but at least he doesn't panic, freezing still. "Get it off. Get it off. Get it off." He says quickly between gritted teeth.

Myra ahhs at Kire's craft, and shakes her head. Okay, not afraid of the dark, then. And neither is Rogawani. Moving on. "Alright, the pots, looks like a good spot." she agrees, moving over. She eyes the rattling pots with a frown. Yep. This is the place. The stick is held at the ready, and she /waits/. Thea's muttering distracts the woman briefly, but then there's a snake on Rogawani's leg, and the greenrider has more important things on her mind, dropping to her knees and pinching the snake just behind its jaw, hoping to make it disengage before killing it. Because she wouldn't want to accidentally smack Rogawani's leg, armoured though it may be.

Kire watches the snake come out and it bites Rogawani's boot, "Hold still Rogawani and I'll whack it." He watches Myra grab it behind the head. "Just strangle it Myra." He stands up to grab the pot from Rogawani, "It's all right I got the pot." He looks down as the tunnelsnake does let go of Rogawani's leg and it's tail curls around Myra's arms as it's legs kick hard, "Watch out for it's legs Myra." There is more crashing and stuff falling over, "Here comes the big one! Watch out for it!" Is heard getting closer to Rogawani.

If 'get it off, get it off,' don't get a body's attention, likely noting will. And Thea's attention is caught. She pokes her head out once again to see Rogawani with a tunnelsnake attached to his leg. That's it. Her head withdraws and a moment later she emerges with several shirts and tous draped over her arm. She skirts the room, hugging the wall and makes it to the door, where the requisition sheet is hanging on a clipboard, grabs the pen hanging by its slender chain and scribbles something on it. As she steps out, she mutters to herself, "I'll just try these on somewhere else." Somewhere more private. And with less tunnelsnakes lurking about. And preferably no overly-zealous whackers chasing them. Which are the most dangerous is, at the moment, debatable.

One doesn't have to tell Rogawani to stand still, because that's exactly what he's doing. However, when Myra's attempts at disloging it fail, and there are calls of an even bigger snake, his eyes nearly roll back into his head. A sudden thrust of the snake's small legs against him causes an abrupt jolt back into reality. While his color remains pale, the boy looks down. "Just pull it off, it's not through the leggings." He manages to get out, his voice not even squeeking. No, he's in too much shock at the moment. "Or whack it or do something. A bruised leg is better than this." His head turns towards the shouts, taking a few shallow breaths. "I think… I know how Cenlia feels." He comments, swollowing.

Myra can't help herself, she squeals a little as the snake wraps itself around her arm. "Ew, ew, I /hate/ their little legs, /ew/." So she's fine with hunting and killing and handling them, so long as their /legs/ don't touch her? At Rogawani's suggestion to just pull it off, she seems to snap out of it a bit, and she grabs the snake around it's neck, or rather just behind the head, and squeezes, /yanking/ it off, then banging her snake-wrapped arm against the floor in an attempt to dislodge the pest.

Kire puts down the pot and he chuckles as he hears Myra squealing. The snakes lets go of Myra as she bangs it against the floor and kills it. "Good one Myra." There is some more crashing and then a huge tunnelsnake plows right into Rogawani's back and pushes him forward. Kire blinks, "Shardit! That's a huge one." He swings his stick at it and the tunnelsnake catches in its mouth. There is a tug of war as Kire shouts for help, "Holbart help!" The grizzled tunnelsnake hunter comes over as the tunnelsnake snaps Kire's stick. "I'll get this Shelia." The old man thwacks the tunnelsnake upside the head and that only seems to make it angrier.

Rogawani takes a step forward just as his leg is freed from the smaller tunnelsnake. His head turns, spots something moving quickly towards him, and then he quickly lifts his hands up to shield his unprotected face. The quick motion of the tunnelsnake, combined with the pots at his feet, causes a bit of a tumble. There is a clanking of pots as they are strewn over, unleashing one smaller snake which quickly slithers off unknowingly towards another group of hunters. Ro' on the other hand ends up sprawled over on the ground with the violent snake on his back. Unlike before, once the first attempt to dislodge the snake fails, Rogawani scrambles to his feet. With a crazed sort of look in his eyes, he gives a little yell and throws himself backwards against a wall, trying to dislodge the tunnelsnake. "Get. Off. Me." He growls under his breath.

Myra /stares/ at the large tunnelsnake, then wields the provided stick in both hands, paling as Kire's stick just snaps, and wishing she had a bigger one. But there's not much she can do about that now, so the greenrider just brings her suddenly tiny stick down as hard as she can on the snake, again and again and again, a frantic frenzy of motion. Kill it! Kill it now! Rrrarr!

Kire puts the broken stick away and he get gets another one to join in the whacking. Holbart does his best to fight the big tunnelsnake, this is the queen. Being hit by three sticks does take it told and Kire winds up to crack it across the neck. The large tunnelsnake roars in pain before Holbart looks at boy who's pressed up against the wall, "Grab a stick and start whacking boy. He arghs as the tunnelsnake grabs his arm that's thankfully padded, "Eat stick you beast." Holbart hits the snake between the eyes.

There is a cry out from nearby as the smaller tunnelsnake is dispatched by one of the other groups. Everything seems to happen quite chaotically, and once the snake is dislodged from his back, landing on the floor, Rogawani stares at the others who begin to whack at it with their sticks. "Sharding, tunnelsnakes." He breathes heavily, gritting his teeth together as his nerves threaten to cause an all out panic attack. With one of Holbart's assistants standing back nearby, Ro' reaches out and 'borrows' the stick from a surprised looking man. Joining in to the fray, Ro' swings the stuck out at the tunnelsnake's hind end, since it seems the front is more occupied with the grizzled Holbart's arm.

Myra keeps hitting at the snake, though she frowns at something and shakes her head. "Busy." she mutters, before going back to pounding the snake. There's another pause a few minutes later, and "Not /now/." Whack whack whack! Whack! Whack… "Just /ignore/ him. Sharding…" She mutters under her breath, and glances to the door. /Something's/ bugging her. She mutters, and gives the snake one last solid whack, before backing away. "I… I have to… Have to go… Sorry." she murmurs, dropping the stick and running.

Kire raises his stick to hit the snake again, but the thing drops from the beating it took from Myra's stick. It lets go of Holbart who looks at his padded arm. "Good job lass." He looks at Myra as she runs off and shrugs as the other groups have gathered around. "All right good job everyone. Let's get cleaning up and we'll tally up how many we got. Kire blinks as Myra runs off, "Myra are you okay?" He calls out to her and then looks over to Ro, "You okay too Ro?"

After joining in the tail end of the tunnelsnake beating, Rogawani nearly continues to beat the dead snake once it stops moving. He holds the stick, his hand twitching for a moment before he finally lets it drop from his hand. Letting out a long breath, the boy watches as Myra leaves, and then looks blankly over at Kire. "Her dragon." Short, to the point, Ro' takes the helmet off of his head and holds it, seeming as if he isn't entirely all there. With a forced smile, and a far too pale face, he looks at Kire. "Still breathing." Without even sparing a look at Holbart, he runs a hand through his hair and murmurs, "I think I'm going to go. Take care Kire. I… need a drink." Moving as if in a trance, Ro just steps around fallen objects, and walks out of the storage caverns, armor and all.

Myra hesitates at the doorway, and nods. "I'll be fine… Ailath… Ailath needs me." is all the explanation the greenrider gives, seconding Rogawani's explanation, before she's jogging across the caverns and out to the clearing.

Holbart takes out his knife and slices the queen tunnelsnake's throat, "That will take care of her. Good job lads." Kire ughs as he puts away his stick and starts to help clean up. "See you guys later. I'll see you both around I hope."

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