Ista's Hatching Feast

Ista Weyr - Living Caverns
Large enough to house the entirety of Ista's population at one time, the cavern set aside for the very heart of the weyr's life is a grandiose, somewhat circular affair, filled with rows of long tables surrounded by benches and chairs. Bustling and busy, it is a rare moment indeed when there is not someone at work or leisure in here. The long trestle table by the kitchens is perpetually filled with plates and trays of food, as well as bottles and flasks of drinks both hot and chilled. A pot or two of something is always bubbling upon the hearth, along with warming enough klah to keep weryfolk and riders going throughout the day and night. Although a high table is set aside for respected dignitaries on formal occasions, most of the seating here is not designated to any particular group - rather, all ranks of the population eat together, intermingled across the broad area.
Great tapestries have been hung upon the walls, orange and black borders proudly displaying the weyr's colors, the age-faded hangings depicting scenes of importance to the area - the eruption of the volcano; the first clutch; the view from the star stones, over forest, dark beach, and glistening waves of blue. Propeller-like fans have been affixed to the ceiling in more modern times, cooling the cavern on the hottest of days, the only real sign of modernization outside the infirmaries and craft caverns. Passageways lead up the stairs to the kitchens, down a second flight of stairs to the lower caverns, and out into the expanse of the bowl.

Well that was a whirlwind. The bronzerider is quickly headed to the table of drinks upon entering and while booze is had in one glass he also grabs a mug of chilled water. "You'd think after all these I'd know to stay more hydrated closer to hatchings." He mutters, turning about to look for Cenlia or Angharad… or anyone of leadership really. He nods to a few passersby who congratulate, smoothing his dress shirt as they do in a preening way.

This may be only Soriana's second trip to Ista, but hatching feasts are easy to find. Just follow (or be swept along by) the crowd! She enters with Ka'el, laughing at something or other he said and taking a look around the caverns. "We might be a while, you know." She grins. "We'd better get some drinks."

"Shells, would think /I/ would know better'n long sleeves," Cenlia groans to T'eo, the weyrwoman tugging irritably at her maybe a little over-billowy white blouse and following not too far behind her weyrleader, making her own trundlebug line for the drinks. "Gotta make sure we dun got anybody fainting from the heat," is added, maybe overhearing Soriana there. And also grabbing some chilled water, although for a second.. the senior looks as if she might be tempted to pour it over her own /head/ rather than drink it. "Am tellin' ya, one of these days, gonna have one of 'em runnin' out there /naked/."

Ka'el needs a drink! "I forgot how hot it was on the sands. Near the sands…around the sands. Thinking about sands.." He grins, heading to the drinks with her. "I take it you don't want klah?" A hot drink after a hot hatching? He himself claims a tall cold glass of water, offering it to her first with vaguely lifted brows. His eyes dance to the people around. So many! So festive. And so nicely dressed.

Ma'am had been at the graduation before, so when the hatching struck, he was dressed in gather finery. At some point in the galleries, he loosened his fancy shirt, and tugged his undershirt free at the hem, looking a bit worse for wear now. It's hot up there! "Never get used to that.." he's complaining as he heads to where the drinks are set up, though he doesn't seem to mind the gallery heat all that much, his expression is rather more of the 'proud' sort. Just how many candidates did Sasoveth bring in, anyway?

T'eo's brows raise at the idea of candidates streaking on the sands. "Oh really? And have them burn their bums when they get knocked flat by their lifemates?" Or, you know, other parts? "But yeah…" He nods at his sleeves. "I feel you there." He notes the Xanadu weyrlings, giving a nod of greeting. "Glad you could join us! Ista's best to Xanadu and her queens!" So comes the formal regards. He also seems Ma'am puffing about back there and gives the greenrider a wink. "Lets find a table shall we? You," He nods to Xanadu pair, "…are welcome to join us. When do you both graduate?"

Soriana hehs to Ka'el. "It was worse on them. And… I dunno, have they got iced klah?" Her tone is teasing, because even iced klah has a tendency to make one thirstier, and right now that's the last things she needs! Water, on the other hand…. oh, yes. Water she can definitely go for. "Thanks," she tells Ka'el as she takes a largeish sip. This is hers now, right? Oh, okay. She'll get her own. Or maybe one for him? Fair trade and all. It's when she's turning around after that she notices Ista's leadership also like cold drinks. Those two people, unless she misses her weyrling politics lessons, would be the weyrwoman and weyrleader. Well then. She should flee befo- okay, no, not really. What she actually does is give Ka'el his choice of water-glasses (sipped or not) and then step up toward them. She was even moving before T'eo noticed her. (Barely.) She smiles at the greeting. "Xanadu's best to Ista and hers," she replies in kind, glancing between him and Cenlia. "And congratulations on your new weyrlings!" She grins briefly, and - whups. Now she's been invited to join them instead of sneaking off with food. Okay, gracious. "Thank you." As for his question… "Should be in just another couple months." So soon. So much to learn first!

From the entrance to the Living cavern N'talya walks tiredly in. Even with the tried overheated appearance her posture expresses, the smile on her face does not look like it will fade any time this turn. She looks about for her fellow weyrling that left for the feast before her and moves into the room beaming.

M'line wobbles in, still somewhat dazed and disbelieving, uncertain whether the events of the past few hours have been some sort of bizarre waking dream. Still, she at least looks happy, smiling and sticking close to her fellow new weyrlings for their entrance into the cavern.

"Hah! Would serve 'em right, too," Cenlia tells T'eo, watching as a good portion of the incoming crowd makes its way toward the drinks tables. For her own part, Cen is just going to cling to that jug of icewater, and look for a glass. And maybe grab a bottle of something chilled an alcoholic before bobbing her head amiably to the Xanadu weyrlings, "Thanks - an' early congrats to you lot too, yeah? Coupla months? Shells, seems like only the other day, was hearin' 'bout eggs breakin' shell." Then again, the goldrider /has/ been stuck on the sands and out of the news-mill for awhile. And pfft, who needs to trudge all the way up to the high table? The weyrwoman clearly isn't going to make THAT effort. "C'mon an' have a seat, - oy!" and that would be her noticing Ma'am, and waving the greenie over too, "Need a word with ya!" Her grin widens, however, at the sight of some of Ista's newest weyrlings, Cen raising a hand to motion them over too. Because wandering around all formal-like with the congratulations needs some serious working up to, of course.

Flushed, a little flustered and dishevelled, Pol looks nevertheless /thrilled/ as she slips quietly into the living cavern along with a handful of weyrlings. She smoothes her hands over her clothing, then over her hair to brush away blonde flyaways, and then makes her way straight through the crowd to the drinks table. Once there, she pours herself a well-iced glass of juice, that's chugged down as quick as is possible while remaining ladylike. With a refill in hand, she steps to the side, biting down on the smile that curves at her plush lips, scanning the crowd for familiar faces.

Ma'am looks momentarily confused. T'eo is winking at him? What does winking mean again? The cogs whir into position in his brain, until finally the greenrider smiles akwardly back at the Weyrleader. "Er, Sir." he manages at last, with a nod of his head. He doesn't dawdle to chat though, eyes fixed firmly on the water out on the table. Once he's poured himself a tall glass of water, he turns back to look over the caverns. The Weyrleader's invitation finally sinks in, and the man wanders over that-a-way, nodding politely to the visiting weyrlings. As the weyrlings filter in, the man seems to be looking for someone. Someones? Attention is swiftly diverted, however. "A word with /me/?" the greenrider's eyebrow raises at the Weyrwoman. Is this why the Weyrleader was winking? Is he in trouble? No, that'd be silly.. or would it? Doubt is written all over the man's face. "Er, what about, Weyrwoman?" he asks. It's no coincidence that he doesn't call her 'ma'am'.

Ka'el takes the non-gulped water glass because it has more water and he feels as if he could drink a gallon of it! He wasn't thirsty when he was chatting away with his companions, but now…geeze! "There was something happening before, wasn't there? A party…" His words trail as he takes note of T'eo and Cenlia, offering a grin. And a glance to their knots. And .. waaait a second. Those are fancy types! For fancy people! Weyrleaderish types. Ka'el swallows a gulp of water before offering a grin to the both of them, lifting his glass at Sori's greeting and congratultions. "Here here!" he taggs on merrily. "And thank you!" he says, taking the invitation to join them. "Our hatching seems like the other day to me too, now that I've seen all of this."

N'talya smiles as she sees the weyrwomsna summons and turns to move though the crowd and in her dirrection, mummering, "Thanks you." to the various folks saying there congratulations to her as she goes. Her eyes widen as she spots the weyrling for Xanadu and gives them a little waves.

Kasy has had some chance to clean up, though not a really detailed sort of cleaning… She's in ill-fitting work-garb that's been stained at various times in its long life with sooo many things. Her face has been washed, but her hair still shows some signs of hardened egg-goo, taking on a bit of a haphazard spikey 'do. But it's not like she cares, or really looks so different from the others. She gives the impression that she'd rather be sleeping, but there's a definite effort at social niceties, dully going through the motions.

T'eo chuckles and nods in agreement with Cenlia. "It does seem to fly by doesn't it? I imagine you've quite a good deal more in store before the end. How go things down south? It's been much too long since I've been there. It's probably the closest thing to home I've had, really." He smiles a little at the memory. "I impressed Raenth on the same sands you lot did. Or wait… was the redesign before then or after? I have trouble remembering." He shrugs and takes a seat, sipping at the water and then his glass of ambery liquid.

M'line may normally be full of boundless energy, but for once she is clearly rather tired, if still very happy. She's managed to clean the worst of the post-hatching goo from herself, clean for her beaming smiles in response to the congratulations offered. "Thank you…" She says to everyone and no one, slumping into a nearby seat.

F'en sneaks in among the wave of people. He's not sure whether to feel sad or happy and it shows in the form of a blank expression. His height benefits him well as he stands looking over the many faces in the crowd for a specific person. Unfortunately he sees Cenlia and the Weyrleader first. THAT'S not who he's looking for. Where are the weyrlings? Are they in here yet? Maybe she decided to stay with her blue? The possabilities swarm in his head as he looks here and there. Then there she is by the drinks. "Paloma!" He calls. "Er… Pol!" He corrects soon after.

She might have been about to go and join a certain greenrider, but the voice calling her name catches Pol's attention before she takes more than a step. She looks around to find F'en, easily spotting the tall teen. "He's /Chrynoth/," she gushes as she works her way to him, resting her hand lightly on his chest as she looks up with an excited gaze. "He called me /Pol/. Pol, F'en-love - I'm /Pol/." For all she's giddy, she doesn't quite seem to know what to make of that particular change.

"Thank you," Soriana says to Cenlia with a smile and a nod, then laughs. "It's been over a turn." How time flies? "But I know what you mean." She heads tableward, then pauses as she catches a glimpse of N'talya through the crowd, grinning and giving her a thumbs-up… oh, hand signals. That training will come later! For now, the simple gesture should suffice, and she lets N'talya make her own way through as she turns back to T'eo and nods. More to go? Oh, yeah. Her grin's rueful, and then her expression turns curious as he mentions his own experiences with Xanadu. "Things are going well. We've a new bovine complex, and we're expanding our herds some." She smiles, and tilts her head a little. "The redesign… would that be when they built the Annex?"

Give Cenlia a little more time, and she's going to start looking like a very droopy lampshade. Already, the pants are a little creased and the blouse is sticking to her back in an unfortunate way. "Shoulda had you pick m' dress again," the weyrwoman tells T'eo, possibly only half-jokingly. A head-bob is offered the weyrlings, both new and visiting, while the weyrwoman herself plonks her butt down on the edge of a table. "Best part's to come, though," she grins at Ka'el and Soriana, "Once yer graduated, is like ye passed through some great big tunnel an' made it out the other side dragonriders," pausing to quirk a brow curiously at Toe, "Re-design? Stood over there once m'self - they change things up some?" As for Ma'am, the goldrider fixes him with a /look/, "You!" Cue finger-pointing. "Ya got somehow on B'ky's bad side, an' Avideth won't let up with Zeek 'bout it, so YOU are gonna go straighten whatever it is out after all the partyin', ya hear?" GOLDIE GLARE. "Also," a glance is sent M'line and N'talya's way briefly, getting momentarily distracted as she spots sleepy-Kasy and Pol over there, "..Er. Gonna have Lorena have a talk with ya 'bout some things. Ain't really important now though." Cryptic woman!

"You did?" Ka'el says to T'eo, brows lifting. "Xanadu has good sands," he notes with a nod of his head. "Good clutches, obviously." Hey, he's a Weyrleader after all! As for how thigns are going at home? He's happy to let Soriana answer that while he takes another drink of his water. The bovine complex. The Annex. Whether or not that's the new part he doesn't know. It's always been there as long as he's been a resident. "It's cold" he adds, because that's important to note too. "We've practiced going Between and comin' out in warm places is my favored part." He grins, nodding to Cenlia. "I'd imagine. .. Won't be imagining for too much longer though," he says, and as her attention turns, so does his, catching sight of the former Natalya. "Hey!" he waves. Both verbal and nonverbal cues!

T'eo continues to think on this now when Soriana mentions the Annex. "Maybe? There were a series of earthquakes in the area a while ago. It was after I impressed I think. But they redid everything. Had to set up a seperate location for the Queens in the meantime. But that was turns and turns ago." At least he thinks it was? "Time gets fuzzy when you get old… don't get old." Yep, sage advice as he sips more rum. He nearly spits it out however when Cenlia brings up the dress choosing. He sputters a moment, swallows and just looks at her. But before he can respond she's talking to Ma'am. He nods to Ma'am and continues to the others. "Yes… those pinkish sands. Stood on those things way too often between clutchsiring and assisting weyrlingmasters. I do miss it. That shack by the lake still there?" His eyes catch Pol and F'en and he gives a bit of a frown.

N'talya smiles as she approaches the other weyrling and the Weyr leaders and smiles, to Soriana and Ka'el she smiles and says, "I guess I am not coming home with you all." her grin just not stoping, "Can you let everyone back there know I love them all!" before looking up to the weyr leader and weyrwoman.

Oop, so it's trouble. Ma'am looks.. relieved? Well, at least this he understands. "B'ky's bad side? But I'm not in his wing? Don't think I've even met the wingleader…" he frowns faintly, trying to figure out what that could possibly be about. "The weyrlingmaster /too/?" Ma'am's face falls, and he shakes his head in bewilderment. What's he done now?

F'en brightens when she hears him and comes over. He glances down at her hand on his chest before looking down at her proper. "That's great! I'm so happy for you! Chrynoth, eh? That's fun to say. And Pol sure is easier to." He chuckles a bit. "I'm so glad you're happy. You see what I mean now? That it's kinda like your whole world when they find you?" Maybe now the idea of his trying to protect Rakauth has a deeper meaning? "He sleeping now? They tend to just pass out pretty quick after all that food."

Kasy notes the cryptic address from the weyrwoman, and she nods dully. A sharp, brief whistle across the cavern draws her eyes from her meal, and she waves and grins at one cousin or aunt or whatever relative, but most of her focus keeps getting drawn back to the food again and again.

M'line is in too much of a tired and delirious state to really be much for socializing or conversation. Which is really saying something for this particular weyrling. She manages to find herself a glass of juice to replenish herself a little, then leans on her table in a happy, sleepy delirium.

Pol's fingers curl tightly, against F'en's chest, then she lets go to smooth over the fabric, flattening out any creases she may have caused. "Chrynoth. He's sleeping, yes - I fed him, and he's sleeping." She grins sappily up at the bronzerider, taking a sip from her juice before offering him the glass to share from, if he wants. "I get it, F'en. I get it /so/ much more now. I can even feel him /sleeping/; it's…. /he's/ incredible." And she may be a little overwhelmed, with how she keeps repeating herself.

"I think we've already been through a tunnel, but… it was part of the obstacle course, and not all that big." Soriana grins. "Probably be easier to see the other tunnel once we're out of it." What with it being metaphorical and all. She looks back to T'eo, and hmms. Earthquakes and… "Oh. Yeah. I think I heard something about that." Way back in the misty mists of time, in the pre-Soriana era. Her lips quirk at that instruction to not get old, and she nods. "I'll see what I can do." Serious-face for a moment, and then she grins. "Those very sands. I'm sure you could come by and take a look, if you're feeling nostalgic. We wouldn't even have to turn on the heat, there's no clutch at the moment." She grins, and then huhs. "Shack…?" Which probably means it's not there anymore! Another sip of her water, but only quickly, because hey! N'talya made it. Soriana gets up to offer the new greenrider a hug, and grins. "Congratulations! I'll let everyone know, sure."

Ka'el laughs and nods to N'talya. "Guess not. 'Less you're planning on doing your weyrling training with us, and I don't think V'dim would be too keen on startin' all over again with you." He sets his half empty glass of water down on the tabletop now, wiping a slightly damp palm on the side of his trousers. "Consider the message passed. The weyr will mourn and celebrate, all at once. Congratulations!" he says, since he really hasn't said it yet…and he's sure she didn't hear him up in the stands. Eyes shift to the Weyrleader and Soriana, catching up on their conversation. Don't get old? He straightens and gives a salute. "Sir, yes sir. I shall put all efforts into it! .. or rather, … into not doing it." A grin.

T'eo looks a bit deflated with there being no shack. Yet when he tries to think about it his head twinges and he has vague memories of Raenth being distressed. When he mentally checks in with the dragon though he's fine and happy. All this happens in a looong blank look on the handsome but aging Weyrleader's face. He comes too, shaking himself a bit and shrugs. "Huh. Oh well." He looks rather bemusedly at the young bronzeling for his response to getting old. "Good man." And with that he's drinking more. What else is going on? Oh yeah. F'en and Pol. Glower!

F'en chuckles at her responses as she repeats herself. He's been there after all. Although he always felt a little fear too. Fear of loss… and now? Now he could lose something else. But apart from a small sadness around his eyes he doesn't acknowledge it much. "Have you eaten?" He looks at the glass she offers gently pushing it back to her. "No, you drink it. You'll need it after being out there. Should probably have a couple glasses to help keep you hydrated." He looks over at the spreads. "I think I see cupcakes." Wink.

Cenlia at least doesn't seem intent on scolding poor Ma'am herself, though she does give him one final EYEING before pouring herself a drink and telling the greenrider, "Anyhow, is a party now, enjoy yerself," totally oblivious to any impending doom she might have caused the poor man. "Shards, never thought I'd miss the cold," she remarks ar Ka'el's words about how it is over there, "'Course, after duties an' havin' to resume, might be feelin' the opposite pretty soon 'nough," admitted with a chuckle. "..Shack?" is asked almost at the same time as Soriana, though Cen is going to give her weyrleader a crooked grin for his look, not managing innocent in the least. At least he didn't choke on the drink? Ahem. She does glance over at M'line and Kasy, though, apparently noticing the sleepies and offering them a more sympathetic, "Is always like this the first few months. Will be walkin' 'round with yer eyes open an; her head asleep fer awhile, when they're tired." Cenlia totally follows her weyrleader's glower, though, to wrinkle her nose at a certain former-teenybronzer and newly-impressed weyrling. "Oy!"

N'talya smiles to the Xanadus weyrling and says, "Thanks…It is so amaz…." she yawns and shakes her head, "ing.. I never really though. you know…" she smiles, "I understand so much more about stuff now." noticing Cenlia and T'eo glower she pushes up onto her tippy toes to try and see what they are glowering at.

Ma'am fidgets in his chair, and frowns at his glass of water. "..what /is/ it about hatching feasts?" he shakes his head slowly. The one after Sasoveth's hatching hadn't exactly gone smoothly, after all. He sighs, and shakes his head, attempting to put it out of his mind. It's a /hatching/ feast, and he was watching for certain weyrlings. As he spots Pol and F'en, an eyebrow raises, and the corner of his mouth twitches upwards. There we go, mood improved. He continues to scan the caverns, quiet, still.

Kasy blinks up from the food at which she's alternating picking at and gorging upon. She's abruptly sure someone is addressing her and she glances up with a smile, offering an elegant, "Huh? Oh, thanks!" apparently taking the words of wisdom for a congrats of some flavor or another.

Pol might be too caught up in her own little bubble of joy to notice the sadness about F'en, shaking her head in reply to his question. "I /haven't/ eaten, no - I was about to at the graduation, but—" Things happened. She sips from her juice, turning to look at the food, following the bronzerider's gaze to find… "Oooh /yes/, cupcakes. They /always/ taste better when someone else has baked them, of course." Grinning up at him, she's tilting her head for him to lead the way to the sweets, when the Weyrwoman's voice cuts into her thoughts and she pauses, looking uncertain. Though the corner of her mouth, with an awkward glance up at the taller teen beside her, she whispers, "Is she yelling at /us/?"

Soriana chuckles to Cenlia. "A few times Between should do it." Nothing like frigid cold to make one miss the heat! And… vice versa. As T'eo looks all confused, she glances to Ka'el. Shack? Does he know about a shack? Because… she doesn't! Oh, well. It's not like T'eo isn't plenty old. The older people get, the more likely they are to reference things long gone! So she's not going to worry about it. She does nod an absent sort of agreement at the weyrwoman's comment to M'line and Kasy, then laughs to N'talya. "Yeah, there's really no way to explain it. I bet in a sevenday, you'll look back and think you didn't even understand it now, too. It's a lot to get used to!"

Ka'el shrugs at Soriana's look. Nope, he doesn't know! "Theres this fence thing by the swamp… could've been part've a shack," he offers helpfully. Amusement touches his expression at N'talya's yawn, and hd nods sagely. "That's about right: Tired. I remember that much about the first night. Lots of meat and bein' tired." Not too tired to party, though! There's always energy enough for that stored somewhere! "What's your dragon's name? It was a green, right?"

T'eo actually starts a little when Cenlia yells, but only because he didn't anticipate it. But the look he gives her is one of approval as he takes another sip of his drink. "Fence? The swamp?" He looks startled now, distracted from his glowering to scratch his head. "Near the lake? I know it got a bit marshy… didn't know any swamp though." This disconcerts the former Seacrafter. Then again he never had reason to go hiking around there much. He goes to drink a bit more but… there is nothing left. "Excuse me a moment." He slides out of his seat. "You all need anything?"

F'en gently places a hand behind her back to escort her towards the food but then there's exactly what he'd been fearing this whole candidacy. He looks around like a startled herdbeast at the voice of the Weyrwoman. "I… m'fraid to say that's…" He looks at T'eo as well. "…probably a yes." Yep. They're definitely being beckoned to. "Don't worry. We ain't done anything wrong." He reassures but still he deflates a little. The young bronzer catches her hand if she'll allow to give it a squeeze before leading her over to the Weyr's leaders. He will of course drop her hand before they get there so there's no issues that may be brought up. Luckily the Weyrleader is now distracted. One is better than two.

N'talya looks a bit worried at the mention of meat, "She ate a little bit but not as much as the otheres….then decided to take a nap…" she glances back in the dirrection of the exit, "Maybe I should go back and see if she wants more. She is out cold right now though…"

"It's not a real swamp," Soriana says, and makes a little bit of a face at a memory of what real swamp is like. "Not near the weyr, anyhow. It's just… damp." Yes. Damp. Very damp. And squelchy. She shrugs a little, and as one of the new riders and a companion are summoned over… well, she gives them an eye-darting glance of curiosity, then does her best to pretend she doesn't see them. Let them have at least an illusion of privacy for their lecture! She glances to T'eo instead, and shakes her head. "I'm good," she says, then returns her attention to N'talya… and laughs. "If she was hungry, you'd know. Trust me on that one. I'm sure she will be soon enough… she might be one of the ones that'd rather have a lot of small meals instead of gorging herself. It's sorta easier on the digestion that way, but… whichever your dragon is happy with, either." She grins, then repeats the question of the hour. "So what's her name, huh?"

Hand-squeeze for reassurance? Definitely ok with Pol, who looks nervously from Cenlia to F'en, brow furrowed in concern as she looks up at the latter. "If we've done nothing wrong, then why…" Only the sentence doesn't get finished, as they're too close to the Weyrleaders for it to go unheard. She curls both hands around her glass, dipping her head at Cenlia and smiling at her - only it's a little weak, given her nerves - as she bobs into a quick curtsey, sticking close to the bronzerider's side for comfort - but not /too/ close, of course. "Weyrwoman Cenlia?"

Cenlia gives poor Pol and F'en that patented Stern Look she reserves for the truly stubborn shrubbery. You know, the ones that keep growing into the walls when they ought to be pruned back nicely. "..Dun think I gotta tell ya how important it is t' keep yer empotions under cap when they're little. Hatchlings pick up onna lot, an' Zeek won't stand fer any of 'em gettin' all confused an' upset," it's not quite doom and gloom serious, but she's directing the words quite obviously at the bronzer, so presumably it's a friendly reminder - or what passes for one in Cenlia's case. The words for Pol are far more cheerful, "Should take it easy yer first night, gonna be a whole load of work in the mornin' - or whenever them lot're up an' hungry." She can't help but grin a bit at N'talya's words, and poor Kasy's confusion, "Will get easier to sort through what's them and what's yer own, eventually." Turning back to the prior conversation, she does blink at Ka'el and Soriana, with a confused side-glance at T"eo, "..There's a swamp?" When did THIS happen? Although she does tell the weyrleader, "Nah, am good with m' drink fer now."

"Alright, alright, not a swamp," amends Ka'el, yeilding to Soriana. "But it is … wet," he says with a nod to the weyrleaders. "And…suctiony." And wet. As T'eo rises and offers to get them something, he can only imagine the look on V'dim or Thea's face if he did ask the Weyrleader to fetch him an ale. Grounded…for life. Under a rock. With Seryth sitting on it. "No thank you," he answers politely, nodding to him before looking back to Natalya. He laughs. "Oh yeah, you'll know hungry quickest of all. Kanekith was the gorging type. But Sori's right. You'll know." Aww look, he has experience now! With this, and…well. Eyes stray to the Weyrwoman and the two weyrlings (one of them brand spankin' new if he's remembering faces correctly!).

When F'en and Pol come up T'eo has the best of his disapproving looks on. But he doesn't speak, just looking long at Pol since they're talked a bit ago. He heads off to grab some more to drink, lingering longer at the table than likely anyone expected. He's halted multiple times there and back, greeting many other visitors and making pleasantries. Indeed the Weyrleader is in a pretty good mood over all, even in light of Pola nd F'en. When he does return it's with a plate of cupcakes and a bottle of rum. This is Ista after all. "Look what I found!"

F'en gets a leetle bit smaller under Cenlia's gaze. Not much smaller. He glances at the othe two weyrlings present. From Xanadu by the looks of their knots. He appreciates that one looks away. "Of course, Weyrwoman. We'd never do anything that'd upset Chrynoth." He says as assertively as he can under her look. He turns to Pol again. "Why don't you have a seat. I can get you something to eat." Though cupcakes are headed back this way… he feels a bit awkward taking them from the disapproving leadership. Especially since T'eo sees him as a thief.

Pol fades a little under the look from both Weyrleaders, dropping her gaze while F'en is addressed, then looking back up at Cenlia when she's spoken to. "Yes, ma'— Weyrwoman Cenlia. I'll be certainly not to overexert myself, emotionally or otherwise." She smiles shyly up at F'en for his contribution, nodding her head in agreement. "Never," she reassures both him and the Weyrwoman, taking advantage of the latter's attention being turned elsewhere to step away. "I can come with you, F'en? We'll get something together." A tilt of her head motions for the food trays, beyond the one held by T'eo. "There might be more cupcakes, sweets. C'mon."

N'talya nods and says softly, "Still, I think I should go check on her…" she smiles to everyone, "Thanks again for coming and bringing that message back to Xanadu for me." she looks to Soriana and says, "Oh Soriana, could you let Echo know for me?" before she turns to go. not even thinking how Soriana will manage to get a message to a Dolphin.

Yep. That would, in fact, be the lecture Soriana was expecting it would be. She knows it well! Which is why she's pretending not to hear it, focusing instead on her conversation with N'talya and listening to bubbly happy new-dragon feelings instead of the sinking ones of realizing that some of the feelings for other humans need to be put on hold for the sake of that new dragon. Once the pair start away, though… she glances up, offering a smile that's meant to be encouraging and is certainly brief before returning her attention to the table. Ooh. There are cupcakes! An entire plate of them. This… okay. This is a hatching feast, so…. she'll risk being grounded under a rock and take a cupcake! As so. "Thanks!" she says to T'eo with a grin. Grins are diplomatic, right? Soriana nods to N'talya. "Sure." She'll get creative, that's how! Probably she'll talk to a dolphineer and make them do it. Because, hey, N'talya's former journeyman will want to know this news as well! So it all works out. "I'll come visit sometime," she says, and grins and waves to the departing greenrider. "Once things have settled down!"

F'en nods to Pol as she requests to go with him, looking brighter at this. "Yes sure. Lets go find you something." He gives her hand a squeeze again, heading off into the crowd. He glances back to see if she's coming as he makes for a nearby table that hopefully has cupcakes. It's very likely that the 'leadership won't see him for the rest of the night if it can be helped!

Ka'el's eyes linger on Soriana as he eavesdrops without meaning to. He can't very much stop his ears from hearing words that are being spoken around him, eh? Such relevance, those words. Familiar, and… hey! Cupcakes. He perks as the Weyrleader returns with treats. He won't be grounded for this, nope. He didn't ask the man to bring these back! What a nice fellow this cupcake-weilding gentleman is. "Thanks," he says, taking one. Mmm..desserts! The most important meal of the day. "See you, N'talya," he says to the new greenrider as she departs, snickering soon after. "We'll never know her dragon's name," he notes to his fellow weyrling companion. "Her brain? Gone" And understandably so!

T'eo nods enthusiastically when Soriana and Ka'el take cupcakes. "No problem! Usually by the time I get up there they're all gone. Lucked out this time." He starts to take a sip of newly poured rum but as he's doing so his name is called out across the weyr. "Eh?" He turns his head about, which may or may not send his long black braid of hair whipping about. "Oh! Hey!" He touches Cen's arm a moment. "I'll be back… gotta go talk to these folks. Former craftmates." And he's up and gone into the crowd with a pair of blue-dressed fellows. Be back? Probably not. He did take the rum bottle with him after all. Probably didn't even know he was still holding it.

Pol follows F'en, curling her hand lightly into his grasp so he can lead her along while she nods and smiles at the people she passes through. She certainly seems keen on keeping a low profile alongside him, and once they've got food, she finds them a spot in a more quiet corner of the caverns where they can eat and talk until she has to return to her Chrynoth.

At least Cenlia isn't waggling a finger at the two - although she does keep an eye on them as F'en and Pol depart on their own quest for noms. Sternly. Or as in stern fashion as she can manage while being presented with cupcakes. To say the senior weyrwoman sidles over to T'eo would be an understatement, considering the HUGE grin that appears for them. Or.. is it for the fact that he's found the rum? Either way - YOINK - some of each disappears in short order as she totally thiefs some with a grin at her weyrleader. Which would totally be eaten much more cheerfully if she hadn't just seen Ista Hold's Lord Trolessi wandering into the caverns. "Ooph-fardles," she mutters from behind a mouthful of cake, "Left 'im at the graduation," to presumably run off at Nziekilth's thrumming, "Um, er," an eyedart to T'eo, "Cover for m -eh?" bit the weyrleader is totalyl making his /own/ escape over there. A look is darted at Soriana and Ka'el, Cenlia telling them in utter seriousness, "I weren't here." And /ZOOOM/ - if you've never seen a goldrider fly without a dragon, well. Now you HAVE. Where did she go? Into the crowd? Who knows! But when a certain less than thrilled holder finally makes his way across the caverns, the weyrwoman will be looong gone.

And the weyrleader's off! That makes Soriana grin a bit. The bit where Cenlia flees makes her grin wider, her hand lifting in a salute. She has seen nothing. Just her, Ka'el, and these cupcakes. Mm, cupcakes. Mm, Ka'el. She turns back to him, and nods. Now what were they talking about? Oh yeah. N'talya. "I don't think we had brains for at least a fortnight." Fortunately for both of their curiosities, Luraoth is quite capable of using the draconic grapevine. The hardest part is figuring out which green from this clutch… but 'the rider from Xanadu with the dolphin' helps narrow it down. Luraoth comes up with an answer, and Soriana repeats it. "…Alamith."

Off goes T'eo, taking the rum with him. Poor Ka'el didn't have a chance to claim any for himself! That's alright…he has a cupcake! And…erp, off goes the Weyrwoman too! With orders. Orders that she wasn't here. At all. Nope. Ka'el hasn't seen her. Doesn't even know what she looks like. Weyrwoman? None over here! "Yes'm. Good…" *zoom!* "…evening." Wow, she's fast. He blinks a few times before shaking his head and taking ab ite from his cupcake. Yum, frosting! And cake! He chews as Soriana goes quiet, eyes taking on that tell-tale 'I'm talking to my lifemate' look. "Alamith, huh? Wow…. Natalya, a weyrling." He smirks, shaking his head. "Changes. Lucky her thought, she doesn't have to worry about tellin' her Journeyman face to face." He lifts the cupcake up to take another bite, but pauses to gesture to her. "Try it. They're good."

Oh, yes. Soriana takes a bite of her cupcake. To nourish her, you see. "…yeah, s'good." She grins and while she's at it, she has another bite. Omnom. …waaaait. "Er. Yeah. I guess I'm doing that for her." She did sort of volunteer. Whups? Soriana makes a face briefly, then shrugs. Oh well. Diplomacy lessons, right? A dolphineer can't be any worse than an annoyed Holder. …like the one who's glaring around in search of a Weyrwoman long fled, for example. Sori has seen nothing, nope. She's just got this cupcake, see. Tasty, tasty cupcake.

"Well wear a wetsuit when you do," suggests Ka'el. "He may throw you in, sic the dolphins on you an' have them carry you off to sea. Would't be fair, as it isn't your fault they're losin and apprentice. But when you're made…sometimes you don' make the best decisions." A smirk and he watches that cupcake travel from hand to mouth. "Good, huh? Y'know what'll make it taste even better?" And no, it's not ale! He leans towards her, as if about to share some intimate cupcake-eating secret, when… ha! His hand darts out and reaches for her occupied one. But it isn't to hold it or even to take the cupcake away. Nope! instead, he aims to knock her cupcake-holding hand up with intentions of smooshing icing on her lips and nose. Mwuaha!

Is that so? "I'll be sure to dress for the occasion, then," Soriana says with a smirk. "Bring along an air tank or three, just in case." After all, she might be stranded out in the ocean depths for days! …hypothetically. "Or maybe I'll just send a letter." Sori puts on a serious and droning tone. "'Dear journeyman or dolphin. I regret to inform you that your apprentice has been otherwise occupied, and will not be returning to her duties. You may direct complaints to Alamith, c/o: The Leadership, Ista Weyr.'" And then she grins, before hmming at Ka'el. Advice? For cupcakes? What sort of advice is this? Is it a topping? A flavoring? A… no. It is none of those. It is a squishing. She figures it out shortly before the actual smush happens, buuut… her attempts to resist may keep it from getting on her face, but they doom the cupcake. It crumbles. And a piece (a rather large one!) falls on the floor. Soriana gives Ka'el a look. A … displeased … look.

Snerk! That'd be a good letter. Soriana should write it! And ka'el would tell her to do if he weren't so occupied with cupcake face smashing, which doesn't quite go down as planned. He receives resistance! No, Sori! Resistance is futile! There is a brief and minor struggle of hands. Both pushing, but in opposite directions. And! And! … Noooo! The cupcake, it falls! Well, a large bit of it does, and Ka'el's eyes go wide (theatrically). In slow motion…there goes the cupcake, down, down, down…*crash!* He blinks innocently, looking from the cupcake, to her, to cupcake….and back to her with the displeased look. He blinks at her. "…Party fail." :/ He makes a face at her. Displeased. Because she dropped the cupcake, and cupcake dropping.. just is not acceptable.

Soriana points a finger (smudged with frosting) at Ka'el. "Your fault." His fail. His party fail. She's still not looking happy at him. In fact, she's looking unhappy at him. Him and his cupcake-smushing ways. "Also?" She stops with the pointing at him, and lips the frosting off her finger before indicating the stir of hatching feast still going on around them. "Wrong sort of party." The leadership of Ista may have fled (for now), but there's still all sorts of hobnobbish people. Holders. Master crafters. Other Weyrly administrative types. People what have opinions what matter. People… discussed in classes on politics. Those sorts of people. It's that sort of party.

Definitely the wrong type of party. No cupcake smushing in front of Holders? What kind of party is this! Ka'el's displeased look, which is false, gradually melts beneath her real one, and his eyes stray from her to the plates of food being claimed by random folk. Talking. Laughing. Discussions that hold double meanings and are wrought with underlying importance. All that, but no one else spied smushing cake in the face of another. "Yeah.. yeah," he has to agree. Wrong party type. And then there's that not pleased look he still has to contend with. "Sorry." insert hopeful look, here. "Want some more water? Can ask about iced klah if you really want a mug."

…and the not-pleased look fades away with the apology. "Nah, I don't need klah." Not even iced. This may be a newsworthy occasion! "But I could go for something to eat." Something other than cupcakes? Well… in addition to cupcakes, at least. These ones have gotten pretty picked over (and fallen on the floor). She might have to eat something else, what's actually still there to be eaten. Soriana rises to her feet, and gives Ka'el a small smile as she extends one hand. "Want to come see what they've got?"

"Wait…what?" No klah? Is Soriana…ill? Is this even the REAL Sori? Hmmmm. Choosing food over klah. Well, that's understandable, and thus Ka'el no longer feels it necessary to conduct an investigation. He rises after her, taking her hand to give a squeeze before allowing his to slide away. She has a point. One that he was either disregarding or merely not taking too seriously: They are visitors. Visitors easily distinguishable as weyrlings, considering how quickly the weyrleader and Woman both recognized their knots. Appearances are everything! Is it bad decorum for weyrlings of another weyr to show affection? Would that reflect badly on Xanadu, especially with Soriana, future weyrwoman? "Yeah, let's go. I remember Ista food from the last time we were here. They did somethin' different with their tubers…" He nods towards the food, heading that way.

Representatives of Xanadu Weyr! That's what it gets called in those lessons on decorum, when they're being reminded that's what they'll be. Constantly. All the time. Eyes. Are. Watching. … even if V'dim's aren't. Anyone could be the one watching them. Judging them. Complaining to someone about what these weyrlings of Xanadu's have done, or haven't done, or… oh, Faranth. It's worse than that. Senior weyrlings showing light affection is one thing, but they've got to set an example for the new weyrlings here. So Soriana smiles to Ka'el, but she doesn't reach for his hand again after that quick squeeze. "Well, maybe some klah to go with the food. We'll see." She can't be expected to go entirely without, after all! She just… requires food. "Were they even tubers? I thought they might have been something different that just kinda… looked like a tuber." And, possibly, won't even show up on the menu tonight… but there will be other things! Roasted things and fried things and baked things and all sorts of human-style feasting food. Enough to fill up a plate, because while heaped plates may not be entirely decorous, so long as you don't gobble the food once you've got it, they're just going to make people think you appreciate their spread, and that seems… acceptable. Probably.

"Might've been," Ka'el says, thinking back. If that thing wasn't a tuber, then he ate unknown food! Mystery food. Which usually isn't something anyone wishes to consume. But this was a good unknown thing, and the same can be about all the knkowns and unknowns that are on the spread for them to partake in. It all looks and smells delicious! And now that he's close to it…yes, he is hungry! So he begins to take a little of this and a little of that, oh and that looks good! But that pot over there…does not. He bypasses it with grace and continues loading til his plate is full, but not overfull. "Too bad Idrissa couldn't come. She'd've been able to tell Natalya what it's like livin' with a green." A pause. "Or…Reina. Or Carolin." Because their dragons don't lick people! His food plate is carried back to the table once she's completely done securing her meal. "…There wasn't a gold in this clutch, was there? Or did I black out…?"

Some of the unknowns smell good! So Soriana will give them a try. Once she's got a nice selection, it's back to the table with it. Time to eat! …and talk. "Heh. I don't think it makes much difference, the first few sevendays. Your lifemate's hungry and curious and sleepy, one after another." And then repeat! Seemingly indefinitely, but the pauses in between slowly get longer. Speaking of hungry, Soriana has a few bites of her food, wandering around her plate as she tries things. "…oh, hey, the fritter's good." That deserves a second bite before she moves on! Nom. As she chews, she shakes her head, waiting until after she's swallowed to confirm. "No gold. There was a bronze, though."

Ka'el settles opposite her at the table and begins to eat. He uses a fork to spear some of the unknowns. Might as well try them first! Taking a taste. Liking. Eating a bit more. "Heh. Your lifemates were curious from the start. Remember sliding around the floor that first night? Kanekith didn't want anything to do with it." A smirk at the memory, though when he's alerted to the fritter, he tries his own. Mmm… "Iti s good.." he confirms, careful to not talk with his mouth full. Score one for etiquitte! He mm's! at the mentioning of the bronze (for you see, he has food in his mouth again), and after a swallow, he speaks. "A pun-…" Er, hm. A representative of another weyr probably shouldn't go around calling a newly hatched bronze…puny. So, he catches himself and rethinks his words. "It was smaller than most've the bronze hatchlings I've seen. Way smaller than Kanekith was." A fond smile follows at the thought of his.

Starting with the unknown is a good plan. That way, if it's not good, they can work around to known goods as they finish off their plates! Soriana continues eating in between conversation, and hehs. "Just because he was… aloof, doesn't mean he wasn't curious. He just wanted all the answers from you." Sliding around on the floor, though… wow. Memories. "Luraoth was so small, then." Well. As huge dragons go, anyhow. Soriana smiles fondly, then gives her head a little shake, ending it in a tilt at Ka'el. "Yeah, he was small. There's actually a fair bit of range in dragons. Some of them… are small."

"She was.." Ka'el agrees. "They were all so tiny compared to what they are now. Even Tahryth. It's crazy because back then, I thought… 'Wow. This guy is huge'." A smirk. "I had no idea. All this," he looks around the cavern, "brings back stuff I haven't thought about in a turn. I saw it on their faces. The same look I had when Kanekith came to me. And the party afterward. Everyone shakin' your hand and giving you congratulations and wanting to talk and know you because now you're someone special when before you were just a face in the crowd. And the weyrlings that the weyrwoman was talking to?" A knowing look touches his face. "It's like a cycle starting over."

"Yeah," Soriana agrees about those memories. "It really does. It's like… it makes it seem like it was ages ago. Because I'm remembering it, but I don't think about that anymore." She glances up, watching one of the new weyrlings pass with that dazed expression. "Well, maybe they're not so much thinking, either. Just… letting it all sink in." She smiles, watching the party around for a moment before returning her gaze to Ka'el with a crooked grin. Oh, those two. "I kinda feel sorry for them. It's… not easy." Her mouth twists a little, and then she shrugs. "Maybe it'll be easier since they aren't weyrlings together? They won't be seeing each other every day, at least…" Instead, they might… not get to see each other for days at a time. Maybe it's not easier after all, just differently hard.

Ka'el follows her gaze to that passing weyrling, a small smirk on his lips. "Never thought I'd find myself here.." he says lowly, words spoken in that soft tone one uses when speaking to oneself. But it isn't long before Ka'el remembers that he has company, and he blinks himself back to the present and jabs his fork into his food at random, bringing up whatever the catch may be to his mouth. "Bein' the one that knows more about dragons than someone else," he explains of his statement. "Giving advice, telling what something's like. I would've laughed in your face if you would've told me four turns ago that this is where I'd be." He pauses for a drink. "And, I think it'd've been harder not bein' weyrlings. Remember how we never saw…anyone? I hardly knew of anything that didn't happen on the grounds."

Here… in Ista? Or… "Heh." Here. A dragonrider. Soriana nods, and her foot reaches out under the table, brushing against Ka'el's leg briefly. Only briefly. This isn't that kind of party either, but… she smiles. "I remember all the questions you asked when you arrived at Xanadu." Speaking of four turns ago. Even a bare two turns ago. "Guess there's nothing like experience…" Her lips quirk. "…and that all those lectures from V'dim might actually have a point." Imagine it. The ancient weyrlingmaster might, after decades of practice, know what he's doing when it comes to teaching! Shocking, Soriana knows… and then she nods. "It really is its own little world." She glances off across the caverns. "I suppose there's no hurry to visit. She'll be busy with weyrling things for a while yet." So will they, but with senior weyrling things. It's mostly the same, but with the implicit threat of demotion to keep them in line.

V'dim…know what he's doing? Imagine that! Ka'el's expression softens at the touch beneath the table, but he doesn't pursue more of it or reciprocate in turn. Looks like someone actually learned his lesson about this gather and what it means to be off weyr and what the expectations are for them! "So, with all that said," he concludes, "I'm glad I impressed with you, even with all the … difficulties we had to go through. It was all worth it." A small yet genuine smile curves his mouth upward fractionally. It's a sincere statement And it's lucky for you as well. Without me, you'd have a boring, depressing class," he claims with an airy exhale, chest deflating sadly. "No joy. No adventure. And worst of all, no Kanekith." The horror! But…speaking of weyrling things. "We're to be back today, right? If we finish eating in time enough, I want to find the weyrlings again. Get a look at that bronze guy. He looks just as small as his bronze, but… dunno if that was just the angle I was in or what."

Difficulties. Yes. That's one word for them. Soriana's lips quirk wryly, and she nods. "I'm glad I impressed with you, too. It's… better to have you there. Even when it's difficult." That's honest, and then… she laughs. "Boring? Perish the thought. We can't have any of that going on. It'd just be trouble." As opposed to excitement, which is never ever troublesome. Nope. "But, fortunately, we've got you and Kanekith both. Never a dull moment!" She grins, and snags another bite of food. Just about done! Which… hmm? "Yeah, I guess." She glances around, not spotting the AWLM but… "I figure he'll call us by dragon when we're supposed to go." Their escort! Who's apparently busy with something or other at the moment, because he hasn't called them yet. "I'm just about done." With her food. As for the other weyrlings… "We can take a look around for them. Maybe," she grins, teasing, "-even get some klah to sip while we do." Because, you know, klah. Or maybe something more drinkish instead. A mug of ale or one of those fruity drinks with rum that seem popular in these tropical climates. A senior weyrling knot ought to be good for that much, at least, and then they can roam the hatching feast and be Good Examples and Representatives of Xanadu and say hello to Ista's newest weyrlings before they're summoned away home.

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