Boundaries and Expectations

Xanadu Weyr - Tranquility
The first impression of this room, despite being relatively small compared to the ledge outside, is space. What few pieces of furniture there are have been strategically placed to provide flow to the room. A wide, low bed is placed against one wall, the simple wooden frame of pale wood supporting a thick, firm mattress covered with white sheets and a thin, creamy coverlet. Nightstands are placed to either side of the bed, each supporting a basket filled with glows. A screen of five paper panels stretched on a collapsible reed frame has been angled just so to block the bed from view of the doorway. Each of the panes holds a stylized dragon drawn in dark ink. Against the opposite wall stands a wardrobe, of similar design to the bed, just large enough to hold the bluerider's less than extensive wardrobe. Tucked into a corner near the entryway, a small, low table is surrounded by four cushions, a shallow tray holding an unusually tiny tree and arrangement of rocks placed in the middle. A square mat is placed in the center of the room, made of thin, pale reeds woven together, bordered by dark lathes. On each of the walls are several prints - landscapes, of snow-capped mountains, sparkling lakes, sun-blasted deserts - framed in dark wood.
Opposite the entrance, a small fault in the rock has allowed a thin trickle of water to leak through the wall. Rather than shoring up the crack, N'kon has instead turned it into a fountain. A large, shallow basin has been placed on the floor beneath, and a pile of smooth, rounded rocks has been stacked so that the soft flow cascades over them to fill the basin. Flattened rocks line the bottom of the basin, and several water lilies float atop the water's surface. Within the pool, the flash and shimmer of tiny finger-fish can be seen.

It has been an interesting few days - Iczy has been gifting various males with gifts - generally little things like rocks or a tree branch with flowers on it, though one unlucky brown got a fish, though so far her favorite blue has yet to receive anything. It seems, though, that is about to change, because the green is backwinging to land on said blue's ledge, something awkwardly cradled in her front limbs as she settles down. « TSARI. » She declares loudly, causing Ricki to wince as she slips to the ground. "Niko?" She calls out, voice carrying more easily than normal, as she pauses for a response.

An interesting few days, indeed. Niko's been here and there and everywhere, and has the battlescars - or, at least, the bed notches - to prove it. As Iczy backwings to land on his ledge, Tsari lifts his head from where it rests upon his forearms, whirling eyes glinting slowly as he takes in the green's awkward posture and burden. « ICZY, » he responds, mimicking her tone even as he uncurls himself and gives a little half-shake, settling everything just so. The beaded hanging that has taken place of the original door that seperated inner from outer weyr trembles slightly, tinkling as the blue's rider pushes it aside. Spying Ricki, he offers her a half-smile that holds maybe just a trace of unease. "Ricki, welcome. Come on in."

Shifting to settle her burden, it seems that Iczobyth has.. procured a plant? And not just a plant - A plant, complete with planter, which is what she was carting up. Nothing -TOO- large for a weyr, just you know, a medium sized tropical looking tree. « I decided this would look better here, than in my weyr. » If that is how she is going to explain it - ok sure. Ricki for her part, pauses, arching an eyebrow at N'kon, before she is stalking forward, stepping around the tree, eyes never leaving the bluerider. "You're actually here.." Her tone is.. slightly surprised? as she closes the distance. "I have to say, I started to wonder."

"What does that mean?" Niko asks, frowning, as Tsari extends his neck, inspecting the tree from all sides. « It is certainly very… interesting, » the blue allows diplomatically, perhaps aware that Iczy isn't quite in her right mind at this time. And, perhaps, aware of why. « Let's - ah, let's put it here. » As the blue nudges the planter towards the designated spot, Niko stretches out his arm, leaving a gap in the beads big enough for Ricki to pass through if she so desires. "I mean, I know I'm usually working, but you know Tsari insists on being home for tea." Every. Single. Day.

« It is beautiful. Just like me. It is okay, Tsarziath, you can say it. » Iczobyth offers cheerfully as she watches the tree be nudged into its spot, tilting her head to peer at it curiously. « Maybe a little to the left. » She adds after a moment, before she is sitting up primly, and - actually sitting still - for once. "Our timing must just have been terrible. Iczy has had that sharding tree on my ledge for three days now, and its been in the way. » But now, it is -their- problem. Closing the distance to Niko, she moves to loosely loop an arm around his side, should he let her.

« Uh - yeah, sure, » Tsarziath replies, slightly taken aback by Iczy's cheer. « As beautiful as you. Totally. » His compliments are easily as awkward as his insults. He nudges the plant obediently to the left, actually looking to the green to ensure it's where she wants it. "I'm sorry," Niko murmurs, just a bit helplessly, as his arm drapes across her shoulders and he leads her towards the inner weyr. True to his word, he's sitting down to tea, a steaming just-poured cup waiting on his small table. He finds another tea cup and sets it down across from him, lifting the pot and glancing at her inquiringly. "I mean, you know where I was the other day." If it helps at all, he sounds just as irritated as she probably is about that particular absense.

« Perfect. I do think it will make fruit, eventually. At least I think that is what that.. gardener was yelling about. » Iczobyth seems totally unconcerned about whoever's garden she must have upset, as she leans to whuffle at Tsari. « Honestly, who -else- has thought to give you a gift, hm? » She is all together much too proud of herself, a little bit of which has seeped through the bond to Ricki, which honestly is probably the best for N'kon, honestly. "Oh, you mean when you were busy sleeping with my sister?" Ricki counters as he moves to set an extra tea setting. Yeah, definitely for the best.

"Let's be perfectly honest here, I was fucking your sister," N'kon replies crudely, "because that's what happens after winning a flight." Oddly, the more calm Iczy and Ricki are, the more irritated the bluerider is - in no small part, likely, because Tsari himself is off-balance by his sister's behavior. "And I didn't ask Tsari to fly Faeth, nor to win - but I'm not going to keep him grounded any more than you will Iczy." He dashes back the tea, coughing slightly from the heat of it, before pouring himself another cup. "She'll fly soon," he murmurs, not taking his eyes off of the greenrider - possibly the wisest thing he's done yet today. In the outer weyr, Tsari twitches, his wings rustling against his back as he deflects his rider's irritation. « Fruit is, uh - good. Maybe it will be tasty fruit. » He sounds a bit dubious - then again, what kind of fruit might be tasty to an inveterate carnivore? « It's a very nice gift. Thank you. » Manners.

"Well -I- didn't want to be so rude about your activities." Ricki counters, even as she is moving to settle down on her pillow, reaching to pull her tea cup towards her, though waiting to sip it for now. "I don't know why you are so.. defensive. I didn't -ask- you to. I mean, you're right, and when she does, Tsari will chase his sister, and that is fine, and its not like Cara is your sister, just mine." A shrug, and she gently blows on the tea, as she watches him across the table. Too calm, perhaps, even as Iczy sits far too still on the ledge. « The fruit isn't for you, but yours might enjoy it. We -are- dragons, we eat meat. » The green offers as if the blue should know better, before turning to peer back out over the weyr, not moving from the ledge.

Sighing, Niko lifts his cup, staring down into the thin brown liquid as if seeking answers within. Alas, he's unversed in the reading of tea leaves, and sees only muddied waters. Then again… "I don't know, Ricki," he finally sighs. "I guess - what is it you think this is?" He lifts his free hand, indicating her, him, and then giving a general sort of 'handwave'. "I guess that's something we've never really discussed. We just… fell into… into 'us', but we've never really discussed just what 'us' entails." He glances up, eyes a stormy grey with no hint of blue. "I don't want to hurt you, Ricki. I care way too much about you. But I can't deny Tsari his chances, any more than I think I could be upset someone else wins Iczy's flight." « Right. » Tsarziath is probably responding to his sister rather than agreeing with his rider. « Mine likes fruit. I like herdbeasts. »

The tea seems to finally prove a good distraction, for Ricki is sipping at it for a long minute before she is finally setting the cup back on the table, leaning forward to rest her elbows against it and peer at him. "I think the last few days have proven that 'us' is flexible, once you are a dragonrider." She offers after a moment, sparing a glance towards the opening to the ledge. And then she is sighing, and sitting up straighter. "So.. I don't know, Niko. You have your space, I have mine. That's what we are." She shrugs, though she is reaching again for her teacup then, pondering the contents herself. « Mine said I wasn't allowed to bring you a herdbeast. That it would be uncivilized. » Iczy offers, without her gaze shifting back to the blue.

« Properly dressed and served with a piquant wine sauc - no, yours was right, » Tsarziath replies, catching himself before he starts drooling. « A plant is much more appropriate a gift from a beautiful lady. » He's trying, here, but his own innate awkwardness - plus the whole Niko/Ricki drama going on inside the inner weyr - has him way off-balance. Lucky Iczy. Probably lucky Ricki, too - where one goes, the other follows, although the expression on Niko's face is less discomfort and more… relief? "I'm doing my best not to hurt you," the photographer murmurs in a low voice, reaching out the hand not holding his cup - not quite touching her, but giving her the option to take it. "I have a feeling you'll always be first for me - but I don't know if I'm capable of being - or having - an only. Not just because of Tsari," he admits, perhaps a bit hesitantly, "but he makes it easier to accept."

"Well, good luck getting -her-" And Ricki inclines her head at the green on the ledge, "Out of his couch for any significant length of time." The green rider doesn't look at all apologetic though, as she reaches to gently take his hand. "You're doing a rather questionable job of it though.. I mean, pretty sure you made it worse, trying to protect me." She offers far more plainly than she normally would. Giving his hand a gentle squeeze before releasing it, she shakes her head. "N'kon, why on Pern would I have any reason to think things were different than before? You're still you." And she exhales loudly as she says the words. "Nothing will probably ever change that."

"Why would I want her out of his couch?" N'kon frowns at Ricki, his fingers curling around hers before she pulls her hand away. At her words, he winces slightly, then shrugs, straightening up and sipping at his cooling tea. "Well, I never said I was particularly smart," he mutters, although there's just a hint of amusement in his blue-grey eyes. He sets his cup on the table, then sighs softly, tapping his fingers lightly along the curved sides. "You'd be amazed at how many people expect someone else to change just because there's - a spark," he says slowly, his words layered with experience. "I'd… try, I guess, if it's what would make you really happy. I'd probably fail," he admits softly, "but I'd try."

"Well, at this rate, you may have a whole forest on your ledge." Ricki offers with a little smirk, before she is sighing and scooting over to sit next to him, reaching for his hand once more. "Hey.. I care for you because you're you." She offers, her tone including a bit of surprise - as if it is a realization of her own. "I can't say I'll -never- turn you away from my bed but.. well, not any time soon." She laughs a bit awkwardly, shaking her head, reaching her other hand to touch his cheek. "Split the difference? If Tsari loses.. just -try- to maybe give me a chance?" She blushes slightly, ducking her chin. "Since if he keeps this up, you'll be -far- busier than I am."

"Fortunately, I like trees - and so does Tsari, even if he doesn't want to admit it." Probably because the gentleman hero would never admit to the wild werewolf lurking beneath that urbane exterior. As Ricki comes closer, Niko turns so that his thigh rests lightly against hers, his fingers eagerly curling about her own. "I just remember how - ah, frustrated you were, back… when we were Candidates. I promise, if you turn me away, or don't have room for me, I won't be upset. I'll just be patient." He's probably one of the few men who can make such a promise and actually mean it. "And I promise, next time Tsari loses, I'll find you, wherever you may be." Notice, he doesn't mention a certain Monocoan green. Or the goldrider he met with after the flight. He turns his head, brushing his lips over her palm. "I really care about you," he murmurs against her hand. "I really hope we can both get what we want from this."

"Well, you aren't exactly the -clearest- person to figure out. But after two turns trapped in the barracks with you.." Ricki pauses for a moment, before giving him a smirk. "It was an.. effective lesson in frustration. But it.. helped me realize that while I'd be happy with all of you, I am also happy with whatever I can get." The non-mention is probably for the best, despite her apparently un-changeably pleasant mood. "You never said that it is you want from this." She offers after a moment, sparing a glance sideways at him. "Besides getting stuck with an apprentice."

N'kon the enigmatic, that's him. Although, he doesn't quite agree, from the astonished glance he gives Ricki. "I'm a very simple person," he protests. "I like people. I like doing things with people. Sometimes those things are intimate." There's quite a bit more to it than that, but he doesn't seem inclined to give her a history spiel right now - likely judging that would best be saved for when she's not swimming in green-induced hormones. "As long as you're actually happy," he adds more seriously, reaching out to catch her chin between finger and thumb and urging her to look at him. "I don't want you settling just because you think I won't." At her reminder, he grows silent, dropping his hand away. After a long, humming moment, he finally shrugs. "I want to be with you. Really, that's the extent of it. I'm not - I'm not ready for a relationship, not the kind with boundaries and promises, not yet. But you matter to me, almost as much as Tsari, and I want to be with you. So I'm willing to accept some - compromises - to make sure you want to be with me."

"Niko.. I promise. Just.. if you bring someone back here, make sure Tsari plays guard. I.. yeah." She holds his gaze as her chin is caught, smiling. And then her smile shifts, and she leans into him, murmuring softly, "How about something where we skip the rest of the day and you distract me from that sharding green and her incessant gift giving, since won't just -get it over with-." Though her movement to kiss him and slip closer makes it difficult to say no, most likely, even as there is an unamused snort from Iczy on the ledge, though at least the green stays quiet - as far as Niko and Tsari know at least.

"My pleasure." And hers. ;)

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