PETA's Got Nothin' on E'gin (Kiley and Ryeokie Are Searched)

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.

Ryeokie sits in a quiet corner of the caverns with Kiley, the area mostly empty during this quiet time between lunch and dinner. The crafter laughs and leans back in his chair, speaking to Kiley, "Now there's the woman I wanted to see. Blushing, stammering ,eating and all. Next time you don't eat I'll drag you back here myself. And don't think I'm joking, princess." Rye stretches and grins, "I'm too tired to bother with computer lessons right. Raincheck? Maybe we can do the charting and such later this evening. After dinner. Which you will eat." Ryeo sends a mock glare in her direction, though it's really rather ineffective with that smile playing at his lips.

E'gin enters the Caverns, the young bluerider heading for the tables. Not so unusual, with lunchtime going on. He's got an armful of mewling kittens, which may not be all that surprising to those who know him. Still, he meanders through the tables stammering a question here and there, leaving with the proverbial tail between his legs at growled or disbelieving answers, titters of laughter following in his wake. It's not long before he draws up to the table Kiley and Ryeokie occupy, pauses there while trying to contain his armful of wriggling furry joy while psyching himself up to ask yet again, "D-do either of y-you think kittens are l-like people?" A nervous glance back over his shoulder towards the Clearing in a 'did-I-say-that-right' sort of way follows and he's back to eyeing the pair with a 'don't hit me' sort of look in his wide blue eyes.

Ocelara saunters into the caverns, her omnipresent basket of wool at one side, and one of her fellow…formerly fellow…assistent headwomen at the other; they're busy discussing matters…and from the sound of it, they're matters involving the recent food "issues"…but it's a quick discussion, and the assistant goes hurrying off with a purpose in her step. Ocelara goes towards the monstrous chair she's claimed out of some long forgotten store, and takes her perch upon it, digging for her spinning even as she does so. The young bluerider, with his armful of infant felines, does cause her to arch her brow up, but she doesn't object. She just gets more comfortable.

"That was /mean/ Ryeokie." Kiley whines out softly, making a face at the starcrafter. "That was really mean.. I don't think you should tease like that." Her tone drops and she males another face at him. "I know.. I'll eat, I promise.." She leans forward and rests her elbows upon the table and gives him a slight look before nodding. "We can do it later.. I don't have much else to do today." Cheeks color again and she mumbles softly, "I'm not going to skip dinner." Is her soft insistence though she grows more quiet as E'gin makes his way through the Caverns. The question is met with a confused look that crosses her face and then she looks to Ryeokie as he knows what the bluerider is speaking about. Poor woman drops her gaze and grows even more quiet. "I don't know." She mumbles the answer after a moment.

Ryeokie looks up, eyes widening and brows furrowing a bit at the rather surprising sight. He stares for a few seconds but that look is quickly replaced with his crescent eye smile. A hand tentatively reaches towards the wiggling balls of fur, "Can I….?" If the apprentice notices the entering headwoman, he gives no indication, his focus split between Kiley and E'gin. "I think kittens are like children, if that helps. Why're you asking anyways?" There's no malice in the boy's voice, just genuine curiosity. The questioning look from Kiley earns a shrug, but her comments get a wink. "It's not like I was lying though. That was all the truth. And now you're back to normal right?"

E'gin is nothing if not compassionate. Heck, he breathes empathy, not air. Kiley's reticence is met with the encouragement, "W-well, like… d-do you think they h-have feelings?" Rapid blinking follows this question. He seems to earnestly want her to get it right. He hasn't noticed the Headwoman in her chair over there, not yet. And thank Faranth for that! He'd never have had the courage to enter the Caverns with the animals if he had. Ryeokie's answer transforms the bluerider's expression. He's at least got a nervous smile on his face now as he nods. "In what way are they - Oh! H-here!" He juggles the armful, almost drops one and a kitten oozes tail-first out from under his arm. Better catch it Ryokie! Looking uncertain at the question, he hazards, "If I tell you before you answer, it won't work. W-would you l-like to hold one, too?" That last bit is aimed for Kylie.

Ocelara does watch, from her distance, as she picks up her dropspindle…but it's with an air of faint amusement. She says nothing; after all, HUMAN children wind up on those tables, and there's not a creature evolved or made that can outstrip weyrbrats for filthing up a table quicker. Her eyes consider Ryeokie and Kylie in turn…but she keeps her serene peace for the time being!

Kiley clearly did not get a good look at E'gin for she did not see the kittens in his arms. It is Ryeokie who draws her attention back to that fact and she blinks in confusion with a mixture of surprise. But she quickly drops her eyes and turns back to Ryeokie to respond to him, her cheeks darker and she mumbles. "But you shouldn't say things you…" The rest isn't finished and she shrugs in a defeated manner. "I guess I am." Comes softly in response before she's looking to E'gin again as he speaks to her. "Why wouldn't they have feelings? I think… Almost everything living has feelings." The woman insists after a moment, watching the kittens in his arms as one slips from his grasp. A soft squeak comes out but then he is offering one to her and there's a shy smile that forms on her lips. "Please?"

Lucky for the kitten that Ryeo keeps fit and has quick reflexes. Arms reach out, catching the tiny thing and bringing it up to the crafter's eye level. "Mrow!" But that strange cat noise is coming from the apprentice, not the kitten. He chuckles for a few seconds before settling it into his lap and stroking it gently. "You not being able to tell me is just making me more curious. But anyhow, they need love, care, and a good environment to be raised in. Be a good parent to it and the kitten will love you right back, just like a kid. Wouldn't you, little one?" Rye grins and scratches the kitten's ears. He shoots a quick wink at Kiley before returning his attentions to the cat. "Does he….or she, have a name? This one's really a sweet one."

Ah, but where have these kitten-feet wandered, eh? All over the stables through piles of midden, likely, for all that their mother's tongue has kept them clean, the faint scent of straw and runnerbeast still clings to their fur. It's not altogether unpleasant though. Ohhh Kiley! You've won an ardent admirer for life with that answer! E'gin gives it up, finally allowing the wriggling mass to overflow his arms onto the tabletop, save for one, which scales his shoulder to the back of his neck. He's got a wide grin on his face now and he uses the palm of one hand to scoot one of the tiny creatures closer to her while steadying the one trying to climb his hair to the top of his head. The other kittens are spreading out, checking out the tabletop. His eyes dart from one to the other, then affix Ryeokie with a steady gaze that borders on rapt while he expounds on animal-parenting, nodding in agreement with him. Obviously not expecting the question, he blinks. "Ohhh, um, they- no I don't think so?" Then with a swallow that sends his adam's apple bobbing, he announces, "Mazunth approves of you both!" Like they ought to know what that means!

Ocelara chuckles, despite herself, betraying her presence in the chair near (but not too near) to the hearth. "E'gin…" Her voice carries, calmly. She's just one of those people…never forgets a name or a face. "If you're going to bring them in and /put/ them on the tables, make sure you get the tables wiped down after." But there's no disapproval. "And you've forgotten to talk sense, again."

Kiley laughs at Ryeokie's cat sound, shaking her head in a light amusement as she eyes the kitten he holds. Though her gaze wanders to his face and the wink he gives her has her coloring and carefully turning her gaze back to the rider with the kittens. And they are released onto the table and she ends up watching them all with wide eyes and a curious tilt of her head at least until one is moved closer to her. A soft coo slips from her lips and she lifts the kitten so to cuddle it in her arms. "Aren't you sweet?" She murmurs to the kitten, lifting a finger to gingerly stroke at the baby fur of the animal. More cooing follows before she giggles softly, "this one is so soft." Nervousness has been forgotten and swept under the table as she looks to E'gin again, her brows lifting from the lack of understanding for his statement. "That is… Good?" So the computer crafter hopes, at least! Though she's tensing at the sound of Ocelara's voice and a careful look is sent in the Headwoman's direction before oh so slowly returning to her kitten and happy thoughts. She doesn't want to get into trouble, after all.

Ryeokie pets the kitten for a few minutes longer, and it's a little bit before he actually hears what E'gin says. "We really should give some of them names. You need a name don't you?" He chuckles again at the small furball before looking up again, his brows furrowing again. E'gin was /really/ confusing the starcrafter this evening. "Mazunth is….yours I assume? But uh, I guess I'm glad that he approves. Of what though…" The apprentice shakes his head and returns back to playing with the kitten, lifting it up and touching noses with it. "One day you're going to be one heck of a lady killer little one. I'll teach you all sorts of tricks."

E'gin's hand freezes on the kitten he's steadying, his eyelids flare wide open at the sound of Ocelara's voice. Oops! Busted! His head doesn't move, but his eyes, still widened, roll her way. "Y-yes M-ma'am." His face squinches at the reminder from the Headwoman to make sense and he clarifies, "I- I mean, Mazunth-" A quick glance at Ryeokie, "-M-mine, yes. H-he th-thinks you're b-both sen-sensitive enough with a-animals to Stand for Seryth's eggs." Gulp. He looks like he's going to get slapped for saying it like that. Likely has, poor guy. But he's slipping a hand inside his jacket pocket to withdraw two pristine while Candidates knots, laying them on the table and smoothing them with fingers that shake slightly, while giving both of them an ingratiating smile.

Ocelara's serene smile deepens, just a little…but she doesn't move. Her spinning stops, held in her hand, as she watches the expressions Ryeokie and Kylie share…or just express. But she'll withhold her congratulations until they've formally accepted!

Kiley continues to play with the kitten in her arms, holding it with one and using her hand to gingerly play with the kitten's paws. This seems to occupy her almost entirely at least until E'gin is speaking. Her attention is drawn up towards him again, blinking as he begins to stutter again. But the stutter isn't what causes the pause in her response. It is his words that cause it more than anything and she opens her mouth before she closes it to consider. The knot he withdraws and settles on the table are met with a considering glance. "Oh." It hits all at once and the woman gives a very slow nod. "I.. I'd be honored."

Perhaps Ryeokie isn't listening as well as he should, because there's really no reaction to what E'gin says. Instead he takes one of the said knots, dangling it in front of the kitten in front of his lap and playing with it. "Can you catch it? Huh? Huh?…….HUH?" Processing and visualization kick in and Ryeo attempts to pull the knot away, but really only gets into a tug-o-war battle with the furball. When he does retrieve the knot, Ryeo holds it in front of his face, peering wide eyed before he looks back up. "R-really?" There's a slight pause before a small smile appears, "I'd love to…I'm honored as well."

Almost as if prompted, and likely he has by the blue lurking hopefully out in the clearing. "Oh! And you'll both make great dragon-parents, too, if you Impress," E'gin offers using his forefinger to alternately nudge the knots wider apart - one towards Kiley's side and the other towards Ryeokie's. Kiley's acceptance draws a large sigh of relief from him, his gaze flickering to watch with growing bafflement at Ryeokie as he plays with the knot first, brows crunching together in concern until… yes! Score. His brow smooths but it dawns on him that he needs to give The Speech now. His shoulders hunch and he mumbles a red-faced, "Congratulations- N-no sex, fighting, drunkenness, don't-leave-the-Weyr-without-a-Rider and…um… O-oh yes. Y'need to m-move into the Barracks." Whew! Deep breath and he blurts, "Watch the babies while I go get a basket?" Eyes dart to Ocelara. "-and a dishrag!" And off he goes in a sprint to the kitchen. Likely it'll be some time before the bluerider recovers what little poise he has to return and lead them to the Barracks.

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