Sibling Love

Xanadu Weyr - Caverns

A massive cavern in it's own right, this one has been skillfully adapted for human habitation. The high ceilings have been painted a light, soft ivory, as are the walls where numerous tapestries hang to provide brilliant color and insulation from the stone. The floor has been left in its natural state, pale pink granite speckled through with glittering mica and dark flecks of basalt, leveled carefully but kept sufficiently rough to avoid slips.

The cavern itself is loosely divided into areas, each one set up to be suitable for some segment of the Weyr's population. The most frequently occupied area, however, is the one near the Kitchens where tables of varying sizes provide a place to sit down and eat or chat and a buffet of consumables is almost always kept stocked. Its plain that on most days, this area wouldn't accommodate anywhere near the full population of the Weyr and equally plain that on such occasions when a formal meal is laid out, tables are appropriated from all the other areas.

A big fireplace is set into the wall near the Kitchens as well, several comfortable chairs nearby providing haunts for elderly residents or riders who like a good view of all that happens. Rugs cover the floor in strategic spots, all of them abstract or geometric in design and most in the softly neutral colors of undyed wool.

Exits lead off in all directions, a big archway the largest and that leading outside. Shallow stairs to the west lead to the offices and administration area while tunnels to the east lead to the infirmary, kitchen and resident's quarters. Southwards, a sloping tunnel leads down to the hot springs and southwest is a wide tunnel, carefully roped off to avoid accidents.

It's a dreary spring day and Vivian is inside sitting at a table with a large glass of fruit juice and the remains of lunch lying on a plate beside her. She's leaning back in her chair, feet resting on the chair next to her as she ticks off things on a list.

Nicca stomps into the living cavern with a sulky look on her face that isn't improved by the mess her hair's in - compared to her normal neat pigtails she now has a style that distinctly looks like she's been pulled through a hedge backwards. Then possibly forwards again. Several times each way. There's scratches on her bare arms, green stains on the skirt of her dress, and copious amounts of mud on the ankleboots. She drops into the nearest chair with a wince and drags a klah jug towards herself. She seems so preoccupied with her inner miseries that she hasn't even noticed her sister. Yet.

Vivian glances up when someone sits down next to her and her eyes narrow when she realises that somewhere in that mess of a human being is her sister. "What the shells happened to you?" She asks, her usually frosty tones seem a bit easier on the ears today for some reason.

Nicca is trying to yank a comb through her hair - at present the comb is definitely losing. She gives it up as a bad job, drinks her cup of klah to the bitter dregs in one long gulp, and then looks across to Vivian. She seems too tired to give her sister her customary glare. "I was on nursery duty today." The ghost of a smile touches her mouth. "Can't you tell?"

Vivian nods her head slightly and puts her list and pen down on the table, lowering her feet to the ground. "Get round here." She says pointing at the chair she had her feet on and holds out her hand to Nicca. "Give me that comb so I can get you sorted out." She says, there isn't any maliciousness in her tone, in the look of her eyes or the set of her smile.

Nicca looks more than a little taken aback by the offer - but after a long pause she gets up and walks over to her sister, handing over the battered comb and dropping into the chair with her eyes half shut. "Sharding kids," she mutters, rubbing at one of the scratches. "Thought this was going to be an easy morning when the head nanny told me that /all/ I had to do was take four of the older ones out for a walk…"

Vivian giggles a little bit and shakes her head. "When it involves those brats, it's never easy." She tells her little sis as she looks at her hair. "I'll try not to tug too hard." She murmurs softly before she gets to work on the tangles. There will be a lot of tugging, but nothing vicious about it, just the perils of long hair. "What else have you been up to?" She asks all friendly like, who has kidnapped the real Vivian.

Nicca still has her eyes shut, wincing occasionally as the comb catches a snarl. "Drifting. That's what Mother would call it anyway. Wandering from job to job in the Weyr and trying to pretend I'm actually interested in any of them." This is unusually honest for her. "Trouble is, I'm not interested. And not very good at pretending that I am either."

Vivian continues to comb the tugs out, working away deftly, she's used to this given the length of her own hair. "Not found anything yet that you're wanting to try, or is that runner of yours everything?" She asks her with a smile, If you even still have it?"

Nicca nods, immediately regretting it as the nod turns into a self-inflicted yank on another tangle. "Oh, I've still got him. Wouldn't ever part with him, but really I'm far too tall to ride him these days so he spends most of the time eating his head off in the stables." She chuckles softly. "Wouldn't want to work with runners though. Far too much times spent getting mucky. Though apparently not nearly as mucky as if you work as a nanny."

Vivian is making a lot of headway and winces as Nicca nods at the wrong time. "Sorry." She murmurs, "I met a guy the other day who deals in runners, though he was complaining about how hardly anyone round here wants them because of the jungle." Finishing a section she runs her fingers through her sisters hair. "That's that side fixed."

Nicca tilts her head slightly sideways to look at her sister over her shoulder. "Well, he might have a point. We've no real grazing for runners here, not like Keroon or places like that. Nowhere to ride them because most of the jungle trails aren't fit for riding on. Weyr full of dragons who just look on them as rather stringy lunch." She turns on her chair to give Vivian better access to the still-tangled side of her head. "I'm amazed any runner dealer would actually bother to come down here."

"He said it was a family business, but he was settling here for a while to try a new venture, but he'll still have the contacts." Replies Vivian. "What about the beach, don't they like running along that, or is it just in the books they do that?" She asks with a bit of a laugh.

Nicca grins. "Oh, the beach is fun for riding. As long as you don't go for beach rides day after day after day because there really isn't anywhere else much to go. But like I said I don't really ride much these days anyway." There's a long pause. "What about you then, Viv? Every time I see you you're doing hidework. Paperwork. Whatever. Is that really what you want to do with your life? Or are you doing it because you don't know either?" Normally the words would be sarcastic, this time she seems really to want to know the answer.

It's mid afternoon and Vivian is sitting in a chair behind Nicca, combing out the tangles in the younger girls hair while they chat. "I don't mind it, I'm good at it and I get to boss people around all day to get things done." She replies with a bit of a laugh. "Perfect for me really isn't it."

There isn't an infirmary on Pern that can keep a pair like Zaruath and F'yr indoors, and apparently 'grounded' doesn't mean anything to them either since the brownrider is wandering into the Xanadu caverns. She's got a box under an arm and is trying to muffle a hacking cough behind her gloved hands so as not to attact any atttention to herself. She stops near where the two sisters are at, dropping the box unceremoniously on the table (Fragile? Apparently she can't read either) and flops down into a seat right after.

Nicca gives a wry smile. "So what am I supposed to answer to that? Yes…and make it sound like you spend your whole time bossing people? Or no, and make it sound like you're in the wrong job?" There's a laugh in the younger girl's voice. The thump of the box on the table draws her attention and her head turns towards F'yr, just as the comb collides with another knot. "Ouch!"

Vivian smoothes out her hair and grins. "No need, I'm in the right job for me just now. Course it helps that the new Weyrleader is hotter than R'sul." She confides in a whisper. "You'll find something eventually." She tells her. The thump of stuff doesn't draw Viv's attention though and she just continues to comb out the last of the tangles, letting Nicca fall into the relaxing sensation.

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