Safety First!

Xanadu Weyr - Forest
The trees grow thickly here, avians nesting in their branches and flitting about after insects. Flowers sprout up and speckle the ground between, the green of small plants and their blooms of bright saffron and cheeky rose that creep all the way up to the bases of the trees and adorn the fallen leaves and mulch of the forest floor. Those trees rise upward in their aged magnificence, gargantuan limbs casting often welcome shade, the general atmosphere and scent of the path is one of freshness and wild abandon.
A path winds its leisurely way through the trees, wide enough for wagons to pass. As it goes through into the forest, a number of other trails branch away, both more and less traveled. Many of them lead to private weyrs, but there's a few more trodden paths - notable among them a road to the feeding grounds, set against the western slopes.
The forest grows wilder the further north one goes, deep growth and ancient places, and the road splits in two against it. One branch leads to a clearing with a large stone building finished with wooden cladding, while the other turns back toward the meadow. Just before it emerges, a trail veers off to the Firelizard Theatre.

Is there any better hour for nefarious business than the time which lingers between daylight and true night? Sure, some might argue that the cover of full darkness is where true villainy lies, but Nessalyn prefers the twilight hours, when everyone begins to feel weight of the day upon them but there's still just enough lingering light to see by. It's so much easier to get up to no good when you can actually see what you're doing. Which is why the goldrider is up a tree, trying (and not really succeeding) to throw branches down from this increased height. Whatever she's up to is more than she can handle alone, it seems, because Tineangrath reaches out to Varequoth and requests his rider's presence in a manner that's likely far more polite than the original translation.

Would Varequoth ever turn down a lady's request? Probably not, which is why /despite/ his many protests the bronze's clean-freak rider is trekking through the woods. Winter is a great excuse for his multiple layers of clothing. He wears a shirt, a sweater, a jacket, a scarf, a pair of gloves, and work boots. It /does/ make it a little hard to move - but less skin exposure that way. Eventually he arrives at the indicated tree and tilts his head upwards. "What are you /doing/ up there?" Brows furrow together, examining both the branches and the goldrider. Ok look maybe he should be more respectful considering her position and all BUT this is V'ayn - so he just continues in his bluntness!

Nessalyn is wearing far fewer clothes than winter requires - which is not to say that there's any exposed skin aside from her face and hands, but she has to be chilly with only a sweater and beanie added to her standard outfit as a nod to the weather. Maybe the fires of her inner rage (which feed upon the blood of her enemies) are enough to keep her warm. "I'm getting sticks!" she hollers back, barely bothering to glance down when she hears the familiar voice. "I need more branches! Can you grab them for me?" She's well aware that trees and branches and the entire natural universe isn't really V'ayn's thing, but, "You've got gloves on, so they can't infect you with dirt!"

"Why?" V'ayn looks up at Nessalyn, throwing her a suspicious look….not that he declines the request. The baker lets out a /heavy/ sigh before stooping to gather the sticks that have fallen on the ground, "Doesn't the Weyr have enough firewood? Or enough people to collect it?" Crouched down now be begins piling the ones that he gathers against the tree. "And should /you/ be wearing more? You'll get splinters and then an infection." Dramatic much? From somewhere at the forest's outskirts there is a loud rumble of amusement from Varequoth that is entirely audible from their current location.

There's a smirk of satisfaction from the goldrider as she looks down to find V'ayn complying with her request, however reluctantly. Sne snaps off another branch, sending it tumbling down most of the way, but it snags before it can properly reach the ground. There are a number of small branches caught amidst others, ensnared just out of reach. "I need-" There's a moment of hesitation, where she weighs how much to keep to herself. It doesn't help that she's yanking on a particularly stubborn branch, and the struggle distracts her. "I need fuel." The sentence ends on a grunt as the branch snaps, and she's forced to quickly steady herself against a tree limb. This most recent acquisition is tossed away from the tree, so that it falls to the ground nearby. "If I die from a splinter, V'ayn, I'm pretty sure I deserve it."

"Fuel for what? Burning Ki'lian?" V'ayn rolls his eyes slightly while working on the pile. He looks upwards at the sounds of struggle and his annoyance is quickly replaced with concern. Thankfully she /doesn't/ come tumbling down which leads to a sigh of relief, but /clearly/ the baker is gonna be the stick in the mud here. "Then again, you could easily avoid that by wearing thicker gloves, right? Or there could be some insect up there that stings you." Another rumble of amusement for Varequoth - who thinks this is of /course/ a ridiculous thing to worry about. "Wait - you're not going to burn Ki'lian's rum are you? Or pretend to? Because actually burning it would be a waste."

"Are you going to stop gathering the wood if I say yes?" Nessalyn demands, grabbing a branch above her head to swing from one limb to the other. Cautious? Not at all. Her palms are red from both the temperature and the friction of skin against bark, but she doesn't seem to mind the scraping. Maybe she will die from a splinter. "I'm pretty sure the insects are dead, or sleeping, or whatever it is they do this time of the turn. And gloves get in the way of some perfectly good climbing." Do they, though? She swings again, dropping down a bit closer to the ground as she spies another easily harvested branch. Tineangrath doesn't seem overly concerned with the fact that her chosen might end up tumbling from a tree, though she does share Varequoth's amusement over his rider's concerns. She lifts slim shoulders in a shrug, glancing down at him with a too-bright grin upon her lips. "That's not a bad plan, actually."

"No, I probably wouldn't be as reluctant if that was your plan." V'ayn glances up, a brief glint of deviousness shining in his eyes, which are mirrored by an equally concerning smile. The current branches all neatly stacked, the baker takes a step back and watches as Nessalyn swings through the branches. There's a head shake for the whole thing, but he seems to be getting less ornery by the second. "I'm known for my great ideas," such ego! "If you /do/ ever act on that just leave my name out of it ok?"

Nessalyn hooks her legs over a sturdy branch and swings her upper body down, handily avoiding any other limbs in the process. Dangling upside-down, she fixes with V'ayn with a crooked grin. "In that case, I'm going to burn Ki'lian," she answers with a wiggle of her eyebrows. A few small bits and pieces are snapped off from this upside-down position, but it doesn't lend itself to stick-gathering as much to showing off. "Yeah, great ideas like splinter infections," she retorts with a roll of her eyes, but she mimes locking her lips all the same. "You don't have to worry about that, I like getting all the credit."

V'ayn can't help but laugh at Nessalyn's tree acrobatics, but in the end he'll let out an appreciative whistle for her endeavors. He'll even accompany the sound with a round of applause, "Well in that case I'm here to help you with anything you need." The baker lets out a quiet chuckle before gathering up whatever other sticks have fallen to the ground, "I'll just play the occasional consultant to your wild ideas. All the fun, none of the responsibility."

Nessalyn bows - which, from her dangling position, is really more of a workout than acceptance of his praise. Her beanie starts to give into the pull of gravity and she fumbles to catch it, blonde hair flipping down in a wavy mess as the cap goes falling to the ground. Its owner swears, reaching up so that she free herself from that awkward position and chase after her lost headgear. "It's good to know that I can count on you for the important things." Like setting fellow bronzeriders on fire. She swings her way down, kicking at any branches she comes across which might've been caught in their descent until they fall free. Might they fall on V'ayn? MAYBE. Hopefully a splinter doesn't get him. "See, that's why you're the perfect friend," she quips easily, kicking one last branch free before dropping the rest of the way to the ground.

Branches? Falling on /him/? V'ayn is quick to notice and with surprising agility he begins to dodge to and fro. The problem is, the man /is/ a baker despite being a bronzerider and he isn't nearly as focused on physical training as other riders might be. As a result, he gets hit square on the shoulders by a couple falling sticks. Frowning, he begins to brush off his shoulders…only to realize that his gloves /also/ touched the sticks so that didn't exactly help clean his clothing. GREAT. "I'm perfect in a /lot/ of areas, if you hadn't noticed already." It's strange but he manages to both scowl yet sound amused at the same time. "Now what are we doing with these? Want me to help you carry them?" Ok so he is /still/ curious about this whole plan.

Nessalyn is definitely not laughing at V'ayn as he dodges, or as he gets hit, or as he realizes that he has nature on him. Of course not. She's just laughing in proximity to him, about things entirely unrelated. "You're okay," she allows, attempting to smother another laugh with a cough, but it just sounds like she's choking. After a breath, "I can't believe I used to have such a thing for you." She's already bending over to gather up the extra branches that she definitely didn't attack him with on purpose (cough), bundling them up in her arms. "We're going to set a fire, obviously," she answers, moving toward the edge of the forest, as though that's enough answer to this questions.

"Nothing that an hour of sterilizing won't fix," V'ayn replies with a grumble. Whether it's fortunate or unfortunate though, his demeanor is suddenly changing. "For /me/? Or for my /desserts/? Either way, both are pretty perfect." The bronzerider smirks, his tone clearly teasing. He'll follow after her to the edge of the forest, willing to carry /some/ of the sticks along the way. In a display of true lack of chivalry, he'll probably carry less than her. "Ok, but what's the fire actually for? Warming something? Destroying something? All of the above?" Look at him, so much more talkative now that they're heading /away/ from the excess nature - or so he hopes!

"I will always have a thing for your desserts," she says, turning on him with a very serious and somber tone. No jokes are to be made about the most important meal of the day. That seriousness is stripped away as she turns again, headed toward the meadow, which will finally lead to the beach. "But yes, for you." She shrugs, the motion just a step away from being dismissive. "I thought it might be fun to fling balls of fire at something. Destruction is optimal, but not critical."

"Thank you," V'ayn replies with equal earnesty, though perhaps he means that about several parts of the conversation rather than just his desserts. He does seem to let the topic of romance drop however, his attention instead shifting to the talk of /fireballs/. "That /does/ sound kind of entertaining. Can we make an effigy of Ki'lian?" The bronzerider seems to only be half-joking about this given the quirk of his lip. Not that the pirate ever did anything to /him/ per say. "Not sure that flinging fireballs from the clock tower would go too well." You think, V'ayn?

Fireballs are always preferable to romance, and since the former is the only thing in their future, Nessalyn is more than happy to move on to the greatest idea of all time. Her eyes light up at the mention of an effigy, her expression almost girlish in its delight. "Oh, that's a great idea. All I did was set up a boring old target." SHE COULD'VE HAD AN EFFIGY INSTEAD. "No, I've got a spot on the beach. I had these arms made," she tries to explain with her hands, although it's almost impossible to do so with an armful of sticks. She's left making a vague gesture of length through the movements of her wrists alone, which probably isn't adequate. "Anyway, they've got a cup at the end where you can put a ball of sticks, light it on fire, and throw it at a target. The perfect game." Like the world's most dangerous ChuckIt!

"It's ok, better to work out all the kinks on a makeshift target. Then, when you do get an effigy, you have maximum burn power." V'ayn lets out a snicker. It seems that he is literally never on his best behavior around Nessalyn. It seems that he's completely intent on participating, especially now that he's put in some (minor) effort. "Plus if any humans catch on fire they can run into the sea, right? Well, anyone that we'd rather not have die."

"Good point. I don't want to waste a perfectly good effigy on a half-assed fire." Nessalyn appears slightly soothed by this, although there's still some audible mumbling to herself about not having considered human targets. Though surely she means targets shaped like people, not… actual people (maybe??). She's only too happy to encourage terrible behavior, and V'ayn has certainly earned his place at her side by risking the infection that is the outdoors. "That's exactly what I was thinking. Safety first!" The words actually sound genuine coming from her lips, as though she truly believes that this counts as a safety precaution.

"In Xanadu, safety is every weyrwoman's number one priority." V'ayn speaks in quite the stuffy tone while putting on a serious expression. That doesn't really last though because the baker can't help but laugh. He'll accompany her all the way to the beach and /definitely/ join in on the fireball launching. It's all in the name of scientific experimentation after all - they have an even /bigger/ project ahead. One that involves semi-specific effigies.

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