Rekindling A Fire

Xanadu Weyr - Smith Forge
Loud, dim, and hot is the large area set up for the Smith's forge area. It's been roughly divided into separate areas, the large common one holding the main forge lodged against the western wall, with bellows at the ready and a chimney rushing high to open in the ceiling outside. This is the area that the apprentices are taught in and are able to use, the nearby wall clasps a vast and unspecialized collection of tools, while the built-in shelves of another wall host jars of nails, crates of wood and metal scraps, spools of wire, sacks of sand, and heavy bins of Cromcoal, all decorated with a fine coating of grime and sawdust.
To the other side are the separate forges for the Journeyman's use, each one kept clean and neat, even when in the midst of a project. Behind and to the back is the private forge reserved for the Master Smith of Xanadu.

The heat of summer has nothing on the heat of the forges. In fact, the warmth outside only seems to amplify things within the loud smithy, where the sharp sound of metal upon metal makes for a raucous chorus seemingly with no rhyme, reason, or rhythm. But to those who forge away, it's a melody of work. And it's a song that Ka'el misses dearly, which is why the weyrling is poking his head into the forges now, looking a bit indecisive as to whether or not he should be here or not … and if Orik is around to loudly correct him if he shouldn't be! Leaving a young bronze outside to wistfully wait, Ka'el moves inside and looks hungrily at the forges that are lit and going. He .. wants!

One is busy at work on those coveted forges! Kiena has rarely been long from them ever since transferring to Xanadu and perhaps she could be using them to fill in the gaps of her time when her attempts at socializing fail (and often miserably). The young bluerider has just finished with her latest project and as she waits on the next step, she steps away for "fresher" air. Not that the summer offers much in the way of comfort. Wiping at her forehead with the back of her hand, her wide eyes catch a glimpse of movement and turns to face Ka'el with her hands now coming to rest on her hips as she shifts her weight to one side. "Can I help you?" she asks with a crooked smirk, looking rather disheveled (and crazy) with her mess of auburn hair barely kept in the messy braid she's made and soot and dirt smeared clothing. The weyrling will get the once over too with those sharp blue eyes as well as she waits on his response with an almost impatient air. Well?

Oh look. And over there, the forge he used to hate cleaning the most, for it is the largest. And over there! The area kept in neat array for tools. And over there! Where metal scrap and useless pieces are piled for practice with the very green apprentices. And, oh and there! … a face Ka'el has never seen before. No, scratch that. Somewhere in the far reaches of his memory, the girl who is approaching him now has a spot. But … when he saw her … where, and why has been lost over time. But, no matter. What matters is that she is here now and addressing him as if he's the one out of place! A stranger in his own home! He, for a moment, looks taken aback, and the silence and staring that follows could possibly be mistaken for insolence. But after a few bloated seconds, he recovers and blinks once, giving his head a near imperceptible shake. "That's … probably the oddest thing anyone's said to me here, yet," he remarks, still sounding a bit dumbfounded although the look has passed. Blue eyes shift from her face to her clothing, noting the traces of soot and the disarray of her hair, though the expression that he holds is wistful instead of quizzical. He himself shows no sign of having been near coal today, yesterday, or ever, and the scent that lingers to his plain clothing smells of dragon oil. "Who are you?"

Oh, it's mistaken for insolence. Kiena's eyes narrow and grow almost as hard as some of the metal scraps in those piles slated for new apprentices. Little does she know how Ka'el considers the forges his home, but to her he is the one intruding on her little spot of peace and solace. Not home yet — may never be home — but she comes here to relax among the din and heat and hard work. Not cater to gawkers, which she has wrongly slated the bronze weyrling to be. No recognition fills her mind, not the slightest flicker. At his dumbfounded response, Kiena blinks and now that hardness is replaced by suspicion and curious-based puzzlement. "Why'd that be? You're sneaking in. Expect a response," she replies smartly (or is that snarky?) and with a thick non-Xanadian accent. Sounds more Western, if one knows their accents from the other. She snorts and some of her demeanor softens but not by much. "Kiena, rider to blue Ujinath and apprentice Smith." Then she lifts a hand and sweeps it in a gesture. His turn!

Ka'el wouldn't know a Western accent from a Fortian one, the poor untraveled lad that he is, but he is pretty good at reading people, or at least their expressions, and Kiena's is one he's seen plenty of times. Granted … he was usually on the other side, either giving or learning how to give from a seasoned and grumpy journeyman. He lifts a hand to comb his fingers through his cropped hair. Apparently, it hasn't fully hit him until now that he isn't part of this anymore. Not really. Not the same as before. "Ka'el," he finally answers as his arm is dropped back down to his side. "Wer-.. er…do we say all've that, really? I only thought…" he shakes his head, changing his mind on whatever he was going to say and dismissing it with a handwave. When in Rome! "Ka'el, rider to bronze Kanekith, and … apprentice Smith. I .. think." He lifts a brow at this, eyes flitting from her, to forge, and back to her. "Still not really sure how that works durin' weyrlinghood. I haven't felt like an apprentice in months. And you bein' here and asking me who I am … it's sort've throwing me, you know I mean?"

Kiena isn't one to mask her emotions or sugar coat her words. Blunt, curt and abrasive is the way to go for her! Unlike certain seasoned and grumpy Journeymen though, the bluerider does mellow out eventually and her prickly attitude is borne more of mistrust than actual poor temper. Ka'el is a stranger to her and so until she can form some of an idea of what kind of person the weyrling may be, she will remain aloof and wary. "Say all of what? Oh. You mean the formal spiel? Guess not." she says with a smirk and shrug. "Habit. Why? It bug you or something?" Then she frowns, peering at him. "You… think? You either are a Smith or you ain't. No in between." Kiena drawls, before she allows the rest of his words to sink in. Oh. OH! "Ah, weyrling! Now that makes sense. So… what? Yer a weyrling and you figure that's the end of it? I kept to my studies. Was a bitc—- difficult… was difficult. Doable though." She spreads her hands to sweep out on either side of her and indicate the forge. "And here I am. Behind a bit but still a Smith." Ta da? Lifting a hand, she rubs at the back of her neck and now she smiles faintly, "Guess that was my bad," Kiena admits slowly. "I've never liked gawkers. But if you're a Smith." She shrugs. He's welcome? "You come to just ogle or actually work?" she remarks in a slow spoken drawl. Did… she just challenge him? Sort of.

"Doesn't bug me, nah," answers Ka'el with an easy shake of his head. That's not it, at all! Though he holds off on explaining to let her finish, and a grin is flashed as connections are made. Yes, he's a smith! And that fact has apparently saved him from a tongue lashing and further looks of annoyance. Hot diggity dog! And now he's beginning to realize that he's found himself a treasure: A smithrider! A possible source of answers to nagging questions he's had no one to pester with thus far. "I've only been a weyrling for … " Huh. How long HAS it been?? "Half a turn. Most people I see are the same people I've been seein' since Candidacy. Haven't had much reason introducing myself as anyone but just Ka'el." A grin follows, and it stays in place at her question. "Came to see if my arse was gonna be tossed out or not. Journeyman Orik didn't send me off to weyrlinghood with a hug an' tears," he says in amusement. "And I didn't know if it meant the end or not. I don't want it to be. Everyone says it's hard to keep a craft, but I'm not afraid've hard. So, yeah. I'm here to work." As opposed to other things he could be doing in his moment of free time. Like, say … sleeping or other things that’d surely cause trouble. Challenge, heartily accepted!

Smithrider! Has a rather pleasant ring (ha ha) to it, doesn't it? "So you're gettin' to the good stuff then?" Kiena remarks with a crooked smile as she regards Ka'el with a look that is far more curious than hostile now. They've a connection… of sorts! Through Craft and similar life experiences. That's a start, right? "Tossed out? Is that how things are run at this forge? Huh. Strange lot. Was never threatened with that back in Western. It was just… understood that you can't always be here," She points to the forge. "And there." Jab at the meadow to indicate the 'Weyr'. "All at once, y'know? Impossible." Kiena chuckles dryly and shifting a little closer to Ka'el, she mumbles in a low voice barely heard over the din of the forges. "So is this Orik one to avoid? Don't think I've had the pleasure of meetin' him. He the reason for your balking about your status?" Blunt and tactless, as always! She grins then, "If yer not afraid of hard work, then I don't see you having troubles keeping pace when your duties as a rider don't jumble things. But I ain't no Journeyman, just an Apprentice. Maybe I'm delusional. Good! So what's your preference?" Let the challenge begin?

"Mmm. Well, there aren't a lot've smith riders here. Not ones who started apprenticin' here, anyway. Orik doesn't like things interfering, y'know?" A wry smirk follows, and he glances past her to the heart of the forges, perhaps in search of the burly Journeyman in question before he continues on. "He's not a bad guy. He's just … got a certain way of thinkin' of things an' doesn't like particularly when things don't go how he planned. Like me impressing. Word is he lost a few in the past. Changed their mind about continuing and joined up a different wing or left Xanadu when they could. Felt like time was wasted on 'em, and one thing he hates…is wasted time." Bit of advice there! "Figures he'll believe I'll keep smithin' once he sees it after I graduate." He pauses a moment and turns his head to exit, his grin broadening. "Kanekith's flyin' now," he reports, pride evident. "An' now they're hunting from above. It's shardin' crazy to watch. I can't wait til I can ride him. He's itchin' for that as bad I am." And rest assured she'll be badgered about her first flight when he has the chance! "Weapons," he answers surely. "I want to specialize in weaponry, and it's what I'm best at." And out of practice on! "Are you game for makin' daggers?"

"Mhm, didn't figure there were many smiths here. Might be why I found it so alluring. Gets to be annoying when you've got too many bodies all clamorin' for the same forges and tools and materials, right?" Kiena remarks with a smile that is a touch more easy going now. She doesn't trust Ka'el by a long shot, but this is all harmless chit-chat about a Craft. "Ahh. I see. One of those types. Well, I've an answer for ya." She'll go silent to pause for a flare of the dramatic before grinning wryly. "Prove 'im wrong. That'll show him not to presume we riders can't make fit Smithcrafters. Nothing says you can't be in another Wing either. I did Search 'n Rescue and still worked on my Craft on what time I had. Meant I had little time for other things but… that suited me fine. Only downfall is well… I'm still an Apprentice. Slow goin' but I'll get there." But his advice is taken and Kiena will likely tread carefully (if that can be believed) around Orik. She may be abrasive to some but she isn't entirely stupid. "Crazy how efficient they are at hunting, eh? Glad I'm no herdbeast or wherry. And flight…" Her gaze turns wistful and distant for a moment before Kiena recalls herself and coughs. Oops. "Worth waitin' for." Maybe that is his chance? The young woman's brows lift in surprise then and she laughs, short and sharp. "A man after my own desires! So you are a threat after all. Weaponry is my choice, though I dabble in jewelry too. Love to throw folks off when I say that." Another grin and her confidence seems far more intact. "Daggers it is!"

"Many? Enough for a weyr Xanadu's size. Never had trouble claimin' my own cot or fightin' for tools," says Ka'el, a bit of a wistful look returning. His cot! Has it been claimed by a new apprentice? The late night banter of young smiths. The trouble. The celebrations of accomplishments. His gaze strays again, this time to the hallway that leads down to the dormitories as he listens to her. Lips quirk up at her advice, and he looks back to her quickly now. "Provin' folks wrong is a gift've mine," he replies with an expression of purpose etched across his face. "If I had to choose a wing, Search 'n rescue would be mine. I always thought it'd make the most sense for a smith. I mean, think've all the good we could do workin' on the inside of that wing. The things we could make or like, create with experience." Sounds like he's put some thought into this! And with the growing intensity of his voice, his attraction becomes more obvious. He exhales a breath, thoughts returning to dragons and flight, and he perks upon hearing her affinity to weapons. This is sounding familiar. Where has he met this woman before? "Jewelry?" Bleh! He makes a face. "I'd rather do clockwork if I had to choose anything else." But now, on to the mission. Daggers! The usually impatient bronze settles outside. His rider's focused excitement has piqued his interest, and his mind peers over his shoulder. What's so interesting? And for a blissful while, Ka'el is busy with what makes him most at ease. Forging metal. Sweating with effort. Working alongside an experienced stranger til the duties of weyrlinghood calls him away.

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