Innocent Bystanders

Xanadu Weyr - Wanderin' Wherry Tavern
It is often whispered, in the crowds that converge here, that a certain Weyrleader was asked what he wanted in the remodeling of the pub that was not so long ago given a refreshing. He muttered back over the rim of his ever-present mug, "I don't care what you do with the place, just so long as there is plenty of ale." With that in mind, cask after cask of ale lines the walls of the tavern, the remodeler's idea of a jest. As they age, the casks bring a real rustic atmosphere to the pub, along with the deeply wooden flavor that seems to be the theme throughout.
The lighting is dim, as it should be in all good pubs, and the tables and chairs are plentiful. A long mahogany bar, intricately carved with runner beasts, stands vigilant duty at the head of the bar, lined with stools for those patrons that seek the bartender's company. Behind it are drinks for those not inclined toward ale, as well as a door leading to the small kitchen where snacks are made and a back room that probably holds yet more ale.

With winter's chill only deepening as the sun begins to sink lower in the skies, it's no surprise that the tavern is bustling with business as Xanadu's residents try to find their way out of the cold. The pair of bartenders on duty are beset with orders, while tables are mostly full. Every so often someone gets up from a bar stool, leaving a seat for those wily enough to take them. Or one could simply take the tack of a certain petite goldrider, who is seated atop the bar itself, with a bar towel serving as a buffer between the ghosts of alcohol past and her pants. She might appear to be holding court, if she were doing anything other than demanding more drinks from the beleaguered barkeep closest to her and keeping a careful eye on who takes the seats closest to her.

The tavern isn't the first choice for a dine-in experience, but Khetsiyah isn't a stranger here either. In part, because this is where her uncle likes to spend his evening and it's her night to come and fetch him. An old grizzled man hunched over a drink in the far corner, he spouts off about some tall tale or another whilst the glasscraft apprentice winds her way through the crowd. Her steps take her direct towards Nessalyn, giving the weyrwoman a good look at a pensive expression and a hint as to the rise and fall of her shoulders in a long-suffering sigh. The girl's steps are slow, as she isn't eager on her task, causing the fabric of her flowy skirts to swish-swish as she goes. Dressed in dark colors with bright bangles at thin, bony wrists lends Khetsi quite a boho look.

Cold, cold is wat bwings us togeder today. Cold and alcohol. As duties finish and the day winds to a close, Evi is being pressed into the tavern reluctantly by two female wing members, a blue and a green rider intent on her unwilling company. Scraping her feet at the door, she sighs with eyed widening at all the people. Reluctant to move inside, her feet are firmly planted until her arm is seized by one of her captors, and she's whisked towards the bar. She is wearing bright teal riding leathers, a light touch of snow still stuck to her hair and eyelashes from wherever she's been previously. The greenrider ducks and weaves to avoid brushing anyone, arriving with a startled quizzical look up at the goldrider, before looking ANYWHERE else. Nope. Nope. Like a moth to a flame, she can't help but tilt her head up at the goldie and then glance away quickly.

The door lets in a glimpse of the fading light and nipping cold with the entry of a couple of local dockworkers and a young seacrafter among them. All are well bundled against the cold, the girl in a long oilskin, pulling back the hood as she enters. There's clearly some ongoing bickering amongst them, mostly between the dockworkers. Finally the woman speaks, "Don' lie, Bertrand. Yeh ain't been farther'n Black Rock." Aethra's voice drips annoyance as she turns about to get companions. "Look, I 'precite the help, but I can get my own drinks. Go get soused somewhere else, if y'please." Dark looks will have to shot at her back, for the girl's turned around and moving through the dense crowd to the bar. As she's pushing through she manages to end up right beside a familiar lookin greenrider. "Ah! Evi! Good t'see ya again!" But even as she speaks her eyes are caught by the goldrider on the bar. A dark brow quirks up quizzically, but she shrugs it off. It's as good a place as any.

NESSALYN IS QUEEN OF ALL SHE SURVEYS. Or, you know, she's just tipsy and aggravating, as per usual. Blue eyes follow Khetsiyah when the glasscrafter is spotted, and if Ness slooooooowly reaches behind her to snatch up a bottle when the bartender is distracted, well, that has nothing to do with the fact that Khet already thinks she's a thief. (She's not wrong.) She uncaps the bottle and takes a liberal drink from it, wiping her mouth with the back of her hand. Evi's face might be familiar, but she doesn't know much else about the greenrider, so she meets that quizzical look with a raised brow and a faint challenge. COME AT HER, EVI. She may be small, but this bar top affords her the perfect height to body slam anyone who displeases her. "You!" She's pointing at Khetsiyah and shouting over the crowd. One finger is crooked in the glasscrafter's direction, before she points to a position next to Evi — and now Aethra, as well. "All of you." She squints a little, her gaze slipping between them. "One of you get that girl if she doesn't come on her own, I need you three."

The entrance of so many passes under the radar of Khetsiyah's notice for the simplest of reasons that the tavern is crowded and she has tunnel vision for the man in the back who's now talking about how big the tunnelsnake was he stabbed through the heart. The tunnelsnake grows in length with each telling, somehow having like twenty limbs as well. A monstrous beast! Of a height with Nessalyn, Khetsiyah's eyes narrow when she's so rudely pointed at, pushing her to hover on the brink of indecision. White teeth stand out stark against her bottom lip while she worries it, before she lifts her chin. 'Me', she mouths, a quick glance in the other direction Nessalyn's judgy finger goes, but continues on her way. You happens to not actually be a command. Not a clear one anyway, and so the little rules lawyer does exactly as she pleases.

Trapped in the sea of people who are waiting for drinks, the noise level alone is disarming for the ill-prepared. Feet inching around, she turns in a tight circle and crosses her arms in a defensive-huffy posture, fluffing up a tad at her predicament. Frowning at her friends who forced her inside, she hears a familiar voice and bounces upward like she is athletic enough to see over the people around her. Persistent, she bounces several times, braids flopping and mouthing opening as she says, "Hello-" landing, feet pressing up off the ground again. "Aethra, right?" Asking the seacrafter's name, with a twitch of a frown, and a step back as she realizes the woman is right next to her and not the person five people over in the crowd. She's never been accused of being the most aware person, ok? Turning with a blush, she ducks her head down and shakes her head furiously at Nessalyn. "Oh no, I um." Shards, looking down, she's wearing her knot. Darn, she can't say she was visiting. "Uh, hi, hello, yes, um. I am sure she will come, maybe. Ok so I am not sure, but I am certain. Sorta certain. You know, let me fetch her." Turning and taking a deep, settling breath, she stands up straight and strides in that direction with her jaw set and firm. The pace is a fast walk, the kind that say 'move' without her needing to word it, hands waving people aside like herdbeasts. But she's not sure where she's going, so she arrives near Khetsiyah and shouts loudly, "WHICH ONE AGAIn?" pointing around and making a cirle like a compass near a magnet. Whelp, you know what she's not the best person for everything.

Aethra leans over to order, slapping marks down on the bar. "Rum. An' don' cheap on me, or I'll tell me Da!" But as she turns back to respond to Evi, she finds herself addressed suddenly by an imperious finger from above. Her eyes go from it to the others who've been ensnared by the goldrider's attentions and back again. The eyebrow arches again, "What for?" Probably not how someone should talk to a junior weyrwoman, but a not-so-sober one? That has different rules, right? As Evi starts off after the glasscrafter she turns herself about face to watch, leaning against the bar casually. She's definitely not much help with who it was, either, having missed that part. There's a tink of glass on glass and to her delight a bottle of her favorite rum and small glass sit at her elbow. "Thankie!"

There isn't a long intermission where that door stays shut. People come for the warmth and the alochol. People leave, typically warmed by said alcohol. A young couple huddle their jackets tighter about their shoulders as they ready to leave, but they're paused abruptly by the man who enters, darkening the doorway only long enough for them to move out of his path like a receeding tide. The chill of too-light eyes rimmed by kohl is the only bright thing about him, his black hair a perpetual intentional messed look, tipped by a dusting of the frost of the evening. One heavy brow rises as a cursory glance sweeps the room- looking for someone- and apparently not immediately finding them. The false-warmth of blue gaze settles on the bar, and the bronzerider raises a hand garnished in multiple silver and jewel'd ring to drag it roughly over his scruff in what- who- he finds there upon her perch. The unhurried occupation of the doorway is relatively minimal before he makes his way closer, bodies of the crowd parting enough for his passage that speaks to the predatorial nonchalance of a serpent slipping through tall grass. The spiced smell of rum already clings to his black leather attire, though he isn't flushed in the face enough to speak of a heady night of it already. Attention flicks briefly over the people the goldrider's pointed out, but then lingers on one of the bartenders appears from around the corner. His words to Nessalyn are drawled in lazy faint humor in his dense accent, "Collecting a crew to mutiny the Weyr tonight, are we. I didn't think you needed help for that."

Is Nessalyn really surprised that Khetsiyah doesn't just bend to her bidding? Of course not. She expects the world to be just as intractable as she is. Still, there's a scowl for the girl as she ignores the command which was absolutely clear, at least to the somewhat tipsy goldrider. There are the beginnings of an itch just under her skin, and the alcohol suitably dulls the meaning of that creeping sensation. She squits at Evi as the greenrider… well, Ness isn't entirely sure what that response was, but it seems to at least get the results she's looking for, and that's all that matters. As she watches the greenrider's progress, a glance goes toward Aethra with the idle comment of, "She's not very good at this, is she." Sure, Evi seems to be making progress with the crowd, but Ness' suspicions are confirmed when the greenrider yells back to her. "That one!" She calls as she points to Khetsiyah again. "The one who's pretending she doesn't know I was pointing to her!" Another swig is taken off of her bottle, punctuated by the same ladylike grace as before. "It's a secret," she informs Aethra, her lips drawn together in a frown. "Or… I forgot. Wait. Let me remember what it was." SHE HAD A PLAN A MINUTE AGO. But look, another arrival! What follows is probably the biggest smile Ki'lian has ever gotten from the goldrider as she declares, "That's what fire is for. I need them for something else entirely."

The first loud voice reverberates right near Khetsi's head, but other than a slight twitch and wince, she gives nothing away. Her footsteps carry her a few steps further from Evi when Nessalyn points her out again and she stops, expression hidden by the fall of straight black hair when she tips her face forward. Whirling around on exacting feet, she first looks to Evi and then to the bellowing goldrider. "Excuse me?" Green eyes stare hard at Nessalyn when she asks her question in a tone low and soft, but as unyielding as velvet-clad steel. "Are you talking to me?" A bit of a rear back paints incredulity in every line of her petite frame whilst her thumb hooks back, angling at her chest. For now, Evi and Nessalyn are in her field of focus; Aethra and Ki'lian lean into the blurred lines that make up the patrons of this establishment.

With a deciding hmm, lips pinched together as she attempts to solve the mystery of who Nessalyn was pointing at. She stares at the table to the left of Khetsi and the old man, brown-eyes round with the excitement of the game. Examining each person and toeing around until Khetisiyah's speaking and she jumps up happily, grinning brightly at the success of her mission. Without delay, she strides forward and throws and arm around the shoulders of the teen glasscrafter, "Hello again, paperweight artist." She says in a loud whisper, breath exhaling near the woman's ear with a happy squeak. "And yes, she was talking to you. Let's go!" She's excited, for no reason other than the change of pace of the evening, bouncing several times in place from heel to toe before standing up tall. Cupping the free hand around her mouth to form a silly sound amplifier, "I Got her Aethra, Uh, do we want to go over there? Or are you coming HERE." Asked with a slight stutter near the end, flitty gaze landing on Ki'lian with a long, defeated sigh that ends in a nose wrinkle, mouth drawn down, and teeth showing. Thinking quickly, she scoots closer to Khetsiyah, ready to usher the girl to their shared doom. Doom, doom, doom, doom, doom.. doom.

Aethra may actually have some amusement play across her lips at the goldrider's comments. "So it would seem." She takes her shot and picks up the bottle to pour another, "Maybe y'should try a bit more… see if that helps any." She gestures idly to the bottle the goldrider holds with her own glass before pouring. After all, more alcohol can only make this better, right? Her senses take in the smell of the bronzerider before she looks up to see him. He gets an apprising look as she places the bottle back. It's not often people smell like what you're drinking, after all. Bright amber eyes flack back and forth between the two riders as she takes a bit slower with glass this time. As Evi shouts across the tavern to them, her eyes are back on the greenrider. "Uh…" She looks to the tipsy goldie and the dark bronzer before giving a very obvious shrug. She doesn't have to shout, projecting with a fair amount of volume across the crowd back to Evi: "Bring 'er here, I guess, yeah?" She doubts the goldrider's going to be hopping down any time soon. Or maybe she just shouldn't?

What is more concerning than Nessalyn amassing minions is that smile she grants him. He huffs a breath, something of amusement but not quite enough to evoke a real chuckle. "I see." Ki'lian doesn't consider it closely for very long, instead distracted as he catches the eye of the bartender, and gestures him over with casual raise of a finger. The man of the sea doesn't move far himself, letting the lad push his way through the crowd to arrive where he'd been summoned. Ki'lian pats him on the shoulder, leaning in to speak some hushed words into his ear, smirking as he does so. It's not obvious, but it's also not entirely hidden that the bronzerider passes the bartender a note before sending him on his way. Eventually, his attention returns to Nessalyn, and in time, the petite and incredulous glasscrafter. "What's the matter, love?" This is to Khetsi as Evi confirms her appointment, "No reason to dally. Surely you're curious as to the reason you've been chosen. I know I am." And that goes for all the lasses the goldrider's elected. His tone now is curled in a little more of that dark, unpleasant humor of his. Without losing a hint of that space-consuming, authoritative posture, he leans slightly back against the edge of the bar, watching.

Laughing is probably the wrong reaction, but that's what Nessalyn does in the face of Khetsiyah's incredulity. "I definitely sent the wrong person," she confides in Aethra, smirking all the while. "Should've sent you instead." It seems she has already decided that the seacrafter is made of tougher stuff than Evi. "Get over here, girl who owns a thing called mine." This is yelled a bit louder, to ensure that the girl hears her and this far more specific command. "Good call," she tells Aethra with a little wiggle of her brows that's only slightly ridiculous, given the amount of alcohol she has consumed thus far. There's definitely a hint of slurring to her speech, though she's doing a remarkable job of holding it all together for such a petite person. "Yes, here. I can't do what I need to do if you're not all here." It seems the goldrider has remembered her plan, if the mischief in her crooked smile is any indication. She squints a little at Ki'lian, eyeing that note-passing but storing it away for another, more sober time. That is, if she even remembers it tomorrow. "Kiii'lian," she singsongs, reaching out to ruffle the bronzerider's hair. "Get us another bottle." And just ignore the one she already has in her hand, thanks.

What is this? A Conspiracy? When Evi's arm settles around her shoulders, Khetsiyah is too shocked to protest, though she moves woodenly: bone and sinew struggling against a pattern destiny attempts to assert. Aethra's presence into the circle of 'what the eff is this' pulls her out of the shadows of 'tavern-goer' into the 3D space of 'involved' in a mere heartbeat as Khetsi's gaze lands upon the woman. The man, also, emerges from the shadows as more than mere puppet at play and to flesh and bone version of a peanut gallery. Her chin lifts, lower jaw slightly offset in stubborn indignation, "Chosen?" The word etches into the air in that same velvety steel, though a touch of her age settles in the softer lines of her expression. Whilst the ground she stands is firm, she is but a teenager amidst those her elder. In a split second's deicions — pivoting on the bronzerider's words, she turns her attention to Nessalyn, the orchestrator of all of this chaos. "You," a mimicry of the very first of their interactions this nice, "Why do you demand my presence?" And fire, but that goes unsaid, though Evi's reaction to Ki'lian does not pass below the radar of her attention. Yet, in the end, it is to Aethra her eyes land, watching thoughtfully.

There's something disconnected about Evi, possibly tired as she wiggles from side to side and humms a happy tune, entirely in her headspace. Glazing over, she frowns further at Ki'lian, opening her mouth to say something and slamming it shut with the light clacking of teeth as she bites at the air with a haughty huff. Unaware of the conversation Nessalyn is having with Aethra, she stares down at the dark-haired glasscrafter's shoulders before scooting behind her as she moves. Moving keeps the girl between herself and Ki'lia. Though she's only half a hand taller than the girl, she's determined to turn her into a barrier between herself and the bronzerider, both hands remaining on shoulders as long as it's tolerated, a marionette and a shield, what a deal. Only when he opens his mouth to address her does she retort back, "You don't need to be involved, you're nosey." She's rude and a touch snappy before turning back to Nessalyn and smiling brightly up at her. "Alright, I um, got her." Allowing Khetsi to speak but pressing her hand out towards Aethra, "Can um, you ask them to make something half syrup half clear liquor?" Rolling her lip out at Aethra in an overly dramatic pout. With a hand still outstretched waiting for a drink, and face far to close to Khetsiyah's she looks up at Nessa and says, "Does he have to come? Because he can take my spot, I volunteer him." Pointing to Ki'lian but not looking at him in anyway, shape or form. Nope.

The note passing absolutely has been noticed, but not dwelled on. In fact much of the bronzer has been noticed with vague intrigue in his weathered appearance that only the sea can cause. Had she seen him before? She couldn't be sure. But in a moment she's too busy trying to hide the smirk that follows the goldrider's assessment of the situation. "Well, 'ere she comes…" The young teen is frogmarched forward and it's really hard to hide the seacrafter's amusement now. As the poor girl's gaze falls on her, she just looks back with a half smirk playing across her lips. Guess they'll find out. Evi gets a nod for her order and she pivots on her heel pouring herself another glass as she calls out the bartender once more for Evi's order. A pivot again and she's back "'E does seem to be volunteerin' himself with 'is curiosity, don't 'e?" Another appraising look of the dark clad rider before she returns to Nessalyn, "So, y'remember what y'wanted now?"

Ki'lian isn't even entirely settled, his arms mid-effort to fold upon themselves when Nessalyn messes his already touseled hair. His head dips slightly to the side, out of her immediate reach, his wrapped hand rising to run his own fingers through it to 'fix' it. Faint annoyance is a'mix with confusion at her playfulness, watching her carefully for a moment before he relents. "Aye," He sighs, "As you wish." He could summon again the bartender he clearly shares some sort of familiarity with. He could place an order any number of normal ways. But he doesn't. The piratical rapscallion straightens from his lean, the dull clinking of metal following his wake as he turns to leave the slowly forming congregation. If it wasn't bloody well guaranteed to be entertaining, he could just finish his business and leave. Instead, though, he wanders off just far enough to pause at a table towards the other end of the room, speaking with a small cluster of burly-looking men who laugh haughtily at whatever he tells them. Their voices rise, jovial but sharp. The sharpness escalates, until one of the companions starts shouting, standing abruptly with a clattering of his chair fallen to the ground behind him into another uninvolved patron. Dominoes fall, as it were, to pushing and shoving and shouting. And the other bartender leaves his post behind the bar to intervene. When Ki'lian returns at his leisure, he's behind the bar instead, lifting bottles to set next to Nessalyn's side, as if he belongs there and these are all his. They are now, anyway. "Need and want are very different things, lass. Of course I don't need to be involved." But he wants to, so he is. At least, insomuch as listening. Rogue-ish man lifts one of the rum bottles and considers its label longer than the others. Evi's hiding isn't missed, but aside from the roaming of his gaze over her, he doesn't bother to linger on it. Instead, deviled grin falls to Aethra. "Not even a bit." Would he ever volunteer himself for Nessalyn's army. "I'm naught but a bystander today. And, as always a gentleman, providing you your liquor."

IT'S ALL A CONSPIRACY. And Nessalyn is more than happy to have orchestrated it, even if her commands are bewildering at best and near-nonsense at worst. "I'm not-" she begins, her brows pulled together in a frown as she stares hard at Evi. "You're not going anywhere." MWAHAHAHAHA. Perhaps it's not quite that evil, even if the look she turns on Khetsiyah is all devious revenge. "I need you here, that's why," she answers in a slightly slurred, but still oh-so-innocent tone of voice. That bottle in her hand is finally raised to her lips again as she takes another drink, head tilted back as she swallows it down. In that space, it seems someone has started a battle, and even in her current state it takes only a moment for her to connect the dots between the pilfering pirate and the commotion. She sweeps those additional bottles toward her, knocking one over in the process. If no one stops it, it's likely to go rolling off the bar to crash into the floor. But what she doesn't destroy is offered up to her 'army' with a bright smile. "Drinks! I wanted to get you all drinks." Is Khetsiyah old enough to be having liquor? NOT NESSALYN'S PROBLEM.

With calm collectedness, Khetsiyah catches Nessalyn's bottle with surprising, practiced ease so that the glass does not melt into a million pieces against the floor. The stare she levels upon the older woman is part deference — Nessalyn is a weyrwoman of the weyr, a fact not lost on Khetsi — and part disgust. "You're drunk." She sets the bottle upright with a half-glance over her shoulder up at Evi, confused. Why is the woman behind her? That thought so easily flits across the glasscrafter's expression before she angles a half-smile for Aethra and something considering for the bronzerider. "I am not old enough to drink, and I've got something more important to do." A mixture of emotion draws forth her brows and tightens her lips, as her eyes slide almost too quickly towards the grey-grizzled man in the back corner, now puking over the edge of the table. Squaring her shoulders, "I will have to…" something, something, something, "… another day." Evi, she almost-touches the arm, but a handful of centimeters are left to spare without actual contact. "Good night," to all collected, sincere enough though another owl-eye is given Nessalyn. But then, Khetsi dodges them ALL and heads for her uncle and to tend the night's errands.

As her drink order is made, she manages to move with Khetsiyah, keeping behind her until Ki'lian moves to the table. With him gone, she doesn't give him a second glance, scooting out and around to squeeze in by the bar and near Aethra. "Thank you." Nodding several times with excessive action, pressing against the wood of the bar and leaning her shoulders and upper back into the person sitting on the stool next to her. Slowly the woman is pressed off her seat, subtle and effective the way a cat pushes objects off a counter. With swiftness, she scoots up onto the chair and turns with a bright smile, thanking the woman and wrinkling her nose. The young woman who has been dethroned came with Evi and elbows her jokingly before agreeing to stand. As the fight starts, there's a pinched look over and another sigh, as the bartender has been run off, there's little chance she's getting her drink promptly. The stealing gets a long blink, "Don't you think.. we are um, sorta stealing from ourselves. Uh, the Weyr supports us, and um, I'm sure the marks come from somewhere. Stealing can be wrong, but if we have to steal something, maybe we should not steal from ourselves. In the end. Then it's not stealing it's borrowing, so it could be ok, but then not because how do we know if we pay it back…" Oh, bother, it's a lot to ponder. She still pulls a bottle towards herself, cradling it close to her chest but not drinking it. Watching the man throw up, Evi opens her mouth in a mimic and closes eyes tightly with a stiff shake of her head. All at once, Ki'lian is back, and her shield is departing, holding out a hand she says, "Wait, no come.." And she's gone. With a sigh and a cross of her arms, she crosses her ankles and swings them rhythmically. Evi can't stay. Still, it's not in her to be stationary. "Um, weyrwoman, I am sorry I do not have my notes. So uh.. You have to be Nessalyn, I think, maybe? Because I know everyone else." Asking while holding the untouched alcohol hostage, one eye on Ki'lian but maintaining an aversion to looking entirely at the man.

Aethra's amber gaze following the path of the bronzerider to watch the scene that soon ensues. Her dark lashes narrow at him as he returns, this time behind the bar. "A bystander… indeed." She gives Ki'lian another long look before downing what she'd just poured. She places the glass down in front of the bronzer and taps it with a hint of a smile. Yes. That. Here, Please. There's a tinkling of bottles as Nessalyn pulls several towards herself. Without thinking Aethra deftly snatches towards the rogue one on it's way to the floor, but misses. As to whether that's the couple of shots she's had so far or just distraction is up for debate. The teen has it instead and she turns to lean back against the bar once more so she can survey the girl. She watches on with amusement as the girl struggles with the appearance of the weyrwoman, and her own alternate options who happen to getting sick all over the floor, "Well, good on ya, lass. Though y'needn't drink anything hard if y'don't want to." She's not going to peer pressure the kid. Not yet anyway. Give her a couple more shots and that may change. But she's gone now. So much for that. Nessalyn gets an appreciative smirk, "Well thankie weyrwoman!" She would raise her glass to her but, well, it's gotta be filled first. With Evi is stuck in a loop of moral debate, her lips tighten and she shoots a gaze to Ki'lian. "Seems like y'may want t'get her drink first, actually."

The bottle he seemed to fancy the most is kept for himself rather than offered up to the growing collection around Nessalyn. Deft thumb and forefinger ease the cork from its security, letting it drop to the floor, discarded. The bottle won't be needing it later. Fingers curl around its neck with subtle clinking of rings against glass as the youngest makes her retreat. "You say that as if it's a bad thing." Regarding Nessalyn being drunk. "I quite fancy her from time to time when she's not yelling at me, especially in this particular state."Dry, amused sarcasm paints every bit of his tone. As Aethra taps her glass at him, he faints a cocky short bow of his head, and fills her glass with his own choice bottle. Shortly after, his timing could not be more practiced, more intentional, more planned. Man swathed in black and shadow rounds the bar again, leaving it empty moments before the next hired hand appears from the swinging door of the kitchens unawares. The other remains too pre-occupied, having positioned himself between a heavy-set gent barely restrained by his mates, and another who is currently sprawled on the ground with a hand over his nose and crimson leaking between his fingers. Ki'lian leans again in the same spot he had before, though this time with his claimed bottle and an open-bar-worthy variety within reach. "That is what a weyrwoman is for." Ki'lian responds to Evi, his bottle cheersed to her by a vague, slight raise of it. "And lucky us, we've one right here. It's all filed away exactly as it needs to be." The last words are intermingled with a breathy chuckle, for he of course means he expects they're filed not at all. He doesn't know about the details, nor does he care to. In response to the seacrafter, he adds. "Have as you desire, loves. They won't drink themselves."

"Anyone is old enough to drink if they try," Nessalyn insists, flat-out ignoring the comments on her drunkenness. Look, her dragon is on the verge of glowing, she is allowed to be as drunk as she wants. At least it's better than the chaos that comes later in the game. As Khetsiyah departs, Nessalyn gives her a look that all but screams I'LL GET YOU MY PRETTY, AND YOUR LITTLE DOG TOO. She watches after the girl for a moment, before her focus slow-drifts back to the rest of the group. Any comments Ki'lian may have made about fancying her are outright ignored. "Don't worry, it's completely authorized stealing," she asserts with a smirk tossed the bronzerider's way as he essentially backs her up. Whether or not that's actually true is up to Evi's judgement, but there's no lack of confidence behind the words. "Yep, Nessalyn. Tineangrath's." With that aversion noticed, she reaches toward Ki'lian in another attempt to mess with his hair. "Don't you worry about him," she asserts with a too-bright smile, "Deep down, he loves cuddling and long walks on the beach." That's probably a lie, but once again it's spoken without a hint of guile. She shoves another bottle in Aethra's direction, since Khetsiyah didn't take her up on that generous offer. "Nessalyn, not weyrwoman."

Present company being what it is, the words that meet her doubt don't settle the disquiet. Aethra asking for Ki'lian to get her drink triggers a shake of the head, subtle, fast, a try at indicating that she doesn't want that. As Ki'lian drops the cork on the floor, it is stared at with a frown, without a word she drops off her chair and picks up the cork, placing it in a pocket and jumping back onto her stool before it's stolen away. All the commentary about who Ki'lian fancies gets a skeptical eyebrow raise and an annoyed blink before she's slowly taking a bottle of liquor that is tart, yet sickeningly sweet as well. Scanning around for anyone of rank, she pours a glass of the thick pink liquid and takes a sip, relaxing back and tapping her toes on the bar with glee. "Well, I mean. I am pretty sure Nei can get me out of any trouble anyways. At least." It's not everything, and she's torn, but drinking. With introductions, she nods, "Good to meet you Nessalyn, I uh, will take that advice. I guess." Still staring at Ki'lian but each sip has her taut shoulders releasing as tension seeps out, body uncoiling in increments as her hackles are down. Staring over into Aethra's glass, she offers hers up, "He did not strike me as deep enough to have a deep down." Accidental honesty has Evi covering her mouth with her hand, "Um, that was inside thoughts." She mumbles, swallowing the entire glass of liquor and pouring more. "Aethra.. do you uh, know Ki'lian?" Pointing to the man but not looking at him, trying to cover up her slip. Having a mean dragon means you can think whatever you want, but you better have a brain to mouth barrier.

There's a smirk and a thanking nod in reply as Ki'lian fills he glass. She takes a sip, savoring the flavor a moment before watching him come back around as staff returns. She's clearly had enough to not be able to hide the vaguely impressed lift of her eyebrows before she turns back to the group at large. "Here, Evi," She passes the bottle that's been passed to her, but Evi already has one. There's a look of approval as the rider takes a sip. Maybe that'll help put her mind to ease. She's not going to question this authorized stealing. Not her weyr, not her wherries. "Nessalyn then," The seacrafter repeats with a smile. "Aethra," Though Evi had mentioned it, she may as well say it herself. "of the Sea Glass." This ship itself may be familiar for anyone whose spent time in Xanadu and Istan ports as a transport and then coast guard vessel over the many turns. Generations in fact. The corners of her mouth twitch in amusement as Evi voices her inside thoughts. "No… no, I don' think I've had the chance." She raises her glass to the bronzer. "Has a good taste in liquor at least."

The dim light of the tavern glints over the menacing edges and corners of the metals that adorn the man himself as he tips back the bottle of amber liquor to take a few long swallows of its contents. Nessalyn's second attempt to mess with him is caught- likely because he's by degrees more sober than she. He doesn't collect her wrist or hold her, just bars her from the last few inches it might take to reach him. "I know you just can't help yourself when you're around me," His arrogance states of his dashing charms, "But I believe you misconstrued my desires slightly. There may indeed be cuddling, but it wouldn't be walking we'd be doing on that beach." Evi's comment elicits a huff of a breath, but not exactly a direct comment. His crooked grin spreads darkly, deepening the shadows of the lines of his face. Invading further the edges of ice-touched seablues that whisper of an abyss if assessed too closely. If he has any argument of not being deep enough, he keeps it to himself- for once. It would be more of a delight to bring it up again later. When Aethra introduces herself, the predator's gaze levels on her. Studious and intense, the sort that looks through, not at. Assessing, not appreciative. Familiarity dawns interest, but this sort of dawn rises red. "Aye, a fine vessel she is indeed. Aged well, with many a'fine captain at her helm." Something about his words sits wrong. Just wrong enough to discolor the waters, to taint them. Sully them. But his smile holds, making that wrongness seem at the same time false, his bottle raised again those few inches in response to her cheers. "Ki'lian." His offer is incomplete, but granted all the same.

Nessalyn arches a brow — well, she tries to arch a brow, but given her current intoxication it ends up being both brows rather than the skeptical lift she intends. In an uncharacteristic show of something that might pass for affection if one didn't know better, she replies, "He's got plenty of depth in there, somewhere." But lest anyone think she's soft or sincere, she quickly follows that up with a sharper, "Or maybe he's just trying to get into everyone's pants. Hard to say." As her quest to mess with Ki'lian's hair again is denied, she looks for a moment as though she might actually pout. She's certainly sulking, enough that she seems to miss the rest of the bronzerider's response. She drinks again from the bottle in her grip, although there's a moment of side-eye for that rum which Ki'lian has claimed. Though she went for convenience over quality, she's well-aware that the bronzerider likely has the good stuff in his grasp. Stubborn to the last, though, the goldrider continues to nurse her bottle rather than do something like asking for what she really wants. "The Sea Glass? That sounds like a boat." Her gaze darts between Aethra and Ki'lian. "Look at that, the two of you will be best friends. You both enjoy highly flammable methods of transportation." There might be a faint threat behind those words, but it's there and gone again thanks to the alcohol in her system.

Still caught in her embarrassment she watches the conversation with quiet reserve, drinking two glasses of the pink drink before pausing and closing her eyes, slipping away from the world for a scant few moments. Body language changes, lighting up from head to toe with joyful ease before shaking her head to push away at the world she wants to be in and return to where she's at, Neifeth's attempt to pull her home failing for the moment. "It's nice that you can see the good in people." Compliment Aethra with a subtle smile, staring at the door and sliding down to inch sideways towards it. DOn't be suspicious. At the mention of what beaches are being used for, there's a pressing of lips to prevent comment, pulling herself upright and pressing the crown of her head up for perfect posture. At moments she's a finished lady, the alcohol fading the impish joy into steely sarcasm as it loosens the walls she puts up between her mind and her lifemates. "Somewhere indeed." Insulting with a bit of a droll to her voice, her natural sweetness cuts into her ability to sound sincerely sassy. The words lose edge when they leave her mouth. "If you can excuse me, I am late for… dinner." Eyes now locked on the door, a tall brown-haired man wearing a tool belt waves and the greenrider practically runs towards him, grabbing his hand and dragging him out the door. They have an important dinner. Yep.

"Don' they all." Aethra muses in response to Nessalyn's commentary on Ki'lian's intentions. She gives a faint snort into her glass at Ki'lian's elaborations on beach activities as she goes to finish it off. Now which drink to have next? She holds up the bottle Nessalyn had given her then casts a glance over her shoulder at the first one, still a fair bit remaining. Decisions, decisions. It seems convenience wins out and she goes for the already open bottle, placing the other on the bar beside it. She hasn't quite resorted to drinking from the bottle directly though. A faint hint of snobbery somewhere in there? Maybe. Or a futile attempt at self regulation. But as the topic turns she fixes the bronzerider with an almost smug look as his own words and Nessalyn's confirm her suspicions. When he speaks on her family's ship though, there's something… there. Something she should be more closely aware of. Or something that isn't there. What is it? But she quickly finds she's now looking at the silver chain he's wearing and she pulls her gaze away and back to the goldrider. "Highly flammable?" She finds herself saying, "S'pose y'could look at it that way." But as she turns to Evi on the subject there is no Evi there. Hm. Her eyes just catch on the fleeing greenrider as she and a man disappear out the door. "So apart from startin' bar fights n' stealin' rum, what else do you do, Ki'lian? Sailor, yeah? Got a vessel or are you on one?"

The response in his favor by Ness distracts him from his interest in the seacrafter, a brow raised curiously until it's chased by something more expected. "Aye, hard to say indeed." He drawls, as if agreeing with her, before adding, "I suppose you'll just have to give it a try to find out." Without her asking for it, Ki'lian by no means would offer a share of the remainder of his selected rum. Especially with her history of pillaging his very own plunder. Revenge remains unclaimed on that one, but battles are to be chosen wisely on these particular seas. And he's deemed this moment not the time. Not yet. Evi's self-dismissal for her announced dinner-date is not exactly followed, his regard returned to the remaining pair. "She does." The man responds a bit flatly, resting the butt of the bottle against his thigh, "If you invite her aboard, I'm sure she could provide an excellent example." Ki'lian clears his throat at the accusations, his tongue licking his lower lip as he smirks a little broader. "I haven't any idea what you mean." He didn't start it. He told a joke. It might have offended exactly the wrong person, but it was- afterall- just a joke. And he didn't steal. There was nobody minding them, and one of the highest authorities of the Weyr oversaw his re-distribution of the tavern's goods. "Aye, I have me own. She's a bit away. My crew handles her while I'm here and less available. And you, are you at the Sea Glass' helm, or man her decks?" This is not exactly small talk, not when the information matters substantially beyond these walls.

Nessalyn squints at Evi, muttering, "Not sure liking his taste in liquor is seeing the best in him." But she doesn't care enough to argue any further on the topic, instead watching impassively as the greenrider makes her exit. "I don't think dinner is what's about to be eaten," she comments after a moment, the delay only making the comment more misplaced. A laugh escapes her when Aethra calls the bronzerider a sailor — a laugh that sounds a bit more like a giggle than anything else, and she smothers any further sound with her hand. NO ONE HEARD THAT. The bottle is raised to her lips again as a convenience front to hide behind as she continues to chase after that dulling warmth of true intoxication. When she lowers it again, a finger is crooked in the bronzerider's direction, as she leans toward him to murmur something in his ear. She's still a tad too close to him as she speaks up again at a normal volume, announcing, "I'd set his boat on fire if he let me get close enough. But yours is safe enough." FOR NOW.

Aethra just about chokes on her drink as she has unfortunately timing with Nessalyn's comment on eating. As she fishes around for a napkin or like element she finds herself outright chuckling in spite of her fairly reserved behavior to this point. "On fire?" Her brows raise and she stops her mopping up to give the goldrider somewhat confused expression, though the amusement of the goldrider does seem to give her some comfort. "Well, I guess thankie for that?" She doesn't seem overly convinced, but not unlike the earlier confusion as to what they were going to be doing, she doesn't seem to bothered by this potential threat. To Ki'lian she gives a nod, since that's exactly how here grandad, a bronzer, used to run his own ship when busy with rider duties. "Coxswain… I'll be captain once I've the feel a'her." There's the slightest bit of pride in her expression now as she contemplates her glass.

The suggestive comment in relation to eating brings about a short-lived vein of amusement related to the greenrider's exit, a glance spared to the exit of the tavern, though it's already well-passed when they've left. An opportunity missed, but there would always be more. Nessalyn's laughter in regards to the title, however, leads to him raising his black-wrapped hand to scratch 'neath his earring'd ear. An idle motion. Thoughtful. And dismissive, all in one. The man is more pliable to being brought closer by the crook of the goldrider's finger than he was to the hair-ruffling, though a look at her first to gauge her intentions is well-earned by lessons learned the hard way. Eventually, however, he does tip his head to listen. The announcement said shortly after covers whatever response he would have had with a grimace, and subsequent roll of his eyes. "Reasons enough to never bring her to these shores." For surely that's the only reason. Although it's in response to Ness, he states it more directly the one who likely cares more about the docks and those harbored in it. "I see." This, to her ranking. It's a considering pause, that which follows. As weighted as the look he keeps upon her for a few beats more. "Not long until she's yours then, I'm sure. Perhaps one day I could get a closer look at 'er. Only ever admired from afar." Again, that blighted edge, that impurity, that decay eats away at the integrity of what he says, implies something else, something more. But abruptly, the weight is taken away. The beginnings of pressure removed as he pushes off from his lean on the bar in the makings of leaving with no other fanfare than what innately comes with him. He holds his good hand up to Nessalyn after transitioning the bottle he isn't up to abandon to his other. The unknotted man turns mostly towards Ness, and would take her hand unless she'd fight him for it to prompt her off her throne. He'd even hold her up, if she wobbles upon her landing. "Let's finish that bottle on the way back to your Tineangrath, aye?"

"You're welcome," Nessalyn answers in that same too-bright tone that's entirely due to a few too many drinks. (Or just enough, depending on who you ask.) She tilts her head with something akin to interest as the girl explains her duties more fully. Though her eyes may be slightly glassy with drink, there's still a sharp glance between the bronzerider and the seacrafter. Whatever she's adding up in her head may not be entirely right, but there are still a few ideas brewing that she may or may not remember in the morning. For a moment, she eyes Ki'lian's hand as though it's some sort of foreign object, before dots connect in her brain and she hesitantly reaches out to take it. Reluctant though she may be to leave her perch, she finally slides from the bar, leaning into the bronzerider to keep from tipping over. "Aye aye, captain," she returns with a smirk. Her head turns toward Aethra for a moment, lifting her bottle in a boozy farewell. "Remember, boats are flammable!" And with that bit of wisdom, she'll make her exit with Ki'lian, attached to the man's side in a way that she's liable to regret in the morning.

Aethra just shakes her head, smirk settling into her expression more permanently. "May be a good idea then. Still, must be a reason behind it." She informs Ki'lian, speaking on attempted boat burnings and the like. Though at this point she's starting to feel the drink a bit more heavily now. She still has a bit of the first bottle left, but it's enough that judgement probably isn't what it should be. So when Ki'lian comments on her ship she gives a smile glinting with pride, still pushing past the nagging pull of caution that something about this guy can't be right. "She's quite as much th'beauty up close as she is on th'water, for sure." She assures. But then they're making to go. She gives a nod to both. "You two have a good night!" As to whether it'll be a good morning? Well, that's again, not her problem. Though hers may not be at this rate either. There's a small shake of her head as she turns back to the bar, easing onto a stool for the first time that night. Maybe she should actually order food.

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