Xanadu Weyr - Caverns

A massive cavern in it's own right, this one has been skillfully adapted for human habitation. The high ceilings have been painted a light, soft ivory, as are the walls where numerous tapestries hang to provide brilliant color and insulation from the stone. The floor has been left in its natural state, pale pink granite speckled through with glittering mica and dark flecks of basalt, leveled carefully but kept sufficiently rough to avoid slips.

The cavern itself is loosely divided into areas, each one set up to be suitable for some segment of the Weyr's population. The most frequently occupied area, however, is the one near the Kitchens where tables of varying sizes provide a place to sit down and eat or chat and a buffet of consumables is almost always kept stocked. Its plain that on most days, this area wouldn't accommodate anywhere near the full population of the Weyr and equally plain that on such occasions when a formal meal is laid out, tables are appropriated from all the other areas.

A big fireplace is set into the wall near the Kitchens as well, several comfortable chairs nearby providing haunts for elderly residents or riders who like a good view of all that happens. Rugs cover the floor in strategic spots, all of them abstract or geometric in design and most in the softly neutral colors of undyed wool.

Exits lead off in all directions, a big archway the largest and that leading outside. Shallow stairs to the west lead to the offices and administration area while tunnels to the east lead to the infirmary, kitchen and resident's quarters. Southwards, a sloping tunnel leads down to the hot springs and southwest is a wide tunnel, carefully roped off to avoid accidents.

Perhaps it is no surprise that the computer crafter, once freed from Candidacy, has taken up old habits once again. Despite it being a good few hours after the Hatching and the feast being over, Kiley has entirely reverted at least to the point where she sits alone in the caverns. A few books are on the table, along with a map of Pern and the woman has her nose pointed downwards looking between map and books while continuing to take notes in her journal. Along with these items there is a paper that has the beginnings of a neatly written and entirely formal letter, addressed to her Crafthall and reading: 'To those whom it may concern, I formally request..' the rest of it remains unwritten as the woman is torn between the various tasks. Notably: there is no plate or food anywhere to be seen on the table she occupies.

A weary face meanders into the caverns, looking for scraps from the hatching feast missed. It was likely the cause of his new lifemate that delayed this. Certain things hadn't changed however, the former-sailor heaping up a plate with vast proportions, mostly meats and veggies. He's dressed in his usual wear now too, save for the odd knot hanging at his shoulder. Slouching with a yawn, he barely manages to look around and see where he was going to wolf down his meal. Luckily he did look around. He spots Kiley. Immediately there is a smile and then it turns sullen. Half debating, by the shifty pivot, he eventually decides that he should join the computer crafter. Where once he was confident, steps are short and edgy. He's jittery. Eyes are glassy, the rider look, certainly different than from before, as if there's a constant conversation going on in his head. Jovial he is not, as he puts his plate down, fitting it in an empty space away from her papers. Slumping into his seat, he mutters in an envious tone, "Ya be lucky."

Kiley does not notice the arrival of the new weyrling, so utterly entranced in her own thoughts and the work on the table that everything else flies entirely over her head without a care in the world. Perhaps the expression that settles on her face is one of bliss, but it is a little too off to be considered such. Brows are dawn into a frown while she works though a half-smile lingers there, but it could also pass for a grimace if one looks at the right angle. Not even when Ers'lan joins her does she look up, it is the muttered talk that draws her from her notes with a jump as her pen is brought to scrawl off the page. A wide-eyed look is given to him, growing even wider as the words begin to register and then cheeks color a faint shade and her gaze drops back down to her journal. "How could you say that?" Her lips press briefly together to form a thin line before she speaks again, "you've been given a great chance." There's a glance up towards him again, the color in her cheeks still lingering but the shock gone as she searches his face. "I don't feel that lucky. I'll be going back to having no friends other than my computers and books while you all are busy with.. Learning yourselves all over."

Lan gives her a look when she frightens at his presence there at her table, a slight smile showing only to dissolve once again as if it had never been. "Sorry…" he murmurs, looking down at his plate with a less than ambitious fork stab at the meats on the plate. The food is lifted, stared at, and then put right back down, the man grunting a little, as if full. The plate is actually put aside for now, defeated before he has even begun. As for her remarks to his own words, he doesn't dare look up at her, keeping his eyes on the knife he rolls over with his fingers, the item clinking against the top of the table each time he lets it slip from inbetween his fingers. His eyes mist a little despite himself. Fingers grapple with that knife and squeeze it to a point that it starts to bend, voice wracked with emotion, throat rough, "Be narh a chance ta do anything. Ya be lucky ya still have yer dreams." His chest rises as it fills, expanding ribcage as he shakes his head at himself, eyes darting to her, "Ya be free ta do as ya will. Ta chase yer dreams… I be adrift…" Indeed, it will be a while as he tries to rediscover who he is and whom he'll grow to be. The knife is put down less he destroy it completely. At her last, he reaches across toward her, "Nay. Ya be narh alone. Please dun leave. I be needing a friend. Ya be coming ta visit me, yah?"

"It's okay.. I didn't think anyone would join me." Kiley notes softly, giving an apologetic smile for her reaction even as he looks away. She considers him, taking in the details about him before allowing her gaze to drop back to her journal and her notes for a moment longer before she adds a few more lines into the more formal of her writings. This is only until he begins to speak again and her eyes are drawn up to look at him, her eyes focusing upon his. "You have a lot of chances, Lan.. After training, you've got a lot that you can do." She promises, and her gaze drops again for the mention of her dreams. There's a slight shrug and she murmurs, "mine seem rather pathetic now. Everyone around me.. Impressing almost all at once?" Her head shakes firmly and she allows her pen to drop onto the table as she lifts her gaze once more, attempting to focus only on the man before her rather than her thoughts and the work that lay between them. "You'll have a chance to chase new dreams, Landers. You can be a craft rider, or.. Anything, really." Cheeks color darker when he reaches towards her and her hand curls as it rests upon the table, not daring to close the distance between them with even the most simple of touches. "You have Pyriel.. And Briana.." Her gaze drops again and there's a real show of emotion, now, as tears form in her eyes and threaten to fall. "I'll visit.. Don't know why you think you need /me/ when you have them. They'll understand better.."

There is a shake of denial for the woman's first remark about dreams, the former-sailor sitting back hard in his chair, bobbling the front of its legs off the floor. He broods over his thoughts, his expression darkening, more so when she speaks of everyone around her impressing. Still nothing. It was her turn to speak, to get emotions and matters off her chest, while he took the time to understand her perspective. He was trying anyway, by the slight grimace set on his features. And then, the hardest blow, the fact that she does not reach to close the distance. Rejected in a way, his hand slides back across the table and tucks down into his lap, his head lowering. "Py dun narh need me. He be having his bronze and Iess…," there was some hurt there, though unlikely aimed at Kiley, while he goes on, "Briana too, has her…" well, he doesn't finish that. Instead he sighs, "I be likin talkin ta yah… ya know that. Yer me friend…" The food is regarded again, as if knowing somewhere he had been hungry once. Instead he does mention to her, "Chase yer dreams. Dun let 'em get away from ya. I lost me dreams…I… dun narh know where I be… I … I dun narh even LIKE flying!" By his tone, it is clear that he thinks that he impressed by mistake, face lost in the scrub of a hand that covers most of the misting of his own eyes.

Kiley glances towards him as his hand withdraws and there's a visible hesitation before she fidgets to lift her own to brush briefly at her eyes before taking her pen again. A new page is found in the journal and she writes something quietly as she listens to him speak. "But, he's your friend.. And you can be friends with Iessrien. And.. Why would Briana stop needing you because of—" She leaves that unfinished as she stares at him, cheeks coloring darker and then she drops her gaze entirely to the journal as she finishes writing. The page is torn gently from it and folded neatly before sliding it towards the man, leaving her fingers on it until he takes it. "You'll have new ones, Lan.. Maybe start with getting a liking for flying? Or.. Something.." This comes out as a soft breath before her hand slowly retreats back to her side of the table and she stares blankly at her journal and notes. "If I do chase my dreams, I'll end up leaving for long periods of time.." This earns him a look and then guilt takes hold of her features as he covers his face.

The page torn out for him is regarded quietly, for some time. He almost doesn't take it. Until when it looks like he'll ignore it, he slides it toward himself, unfolding it to read the words just underneath the edge of the table. The paper can be heard crumpling, his eyes snapping toward her, a resigned look there upon. Abruptly, as his eyes glaze over, he pushes his chair back, rising from it sluggishly. "Ya be chasing them, sure as rain. Nevar let yer sails flag. Ya be going with the wind, where she be leadin ya. Even iffin that means ya be gone for long stretches. Ya do whar it takes. Ya narh want ta be feeling the way I be now… Dun let it go…" He looks over his shoulder, frowning at something unseen. "Kiley," he says as his face swivels back toward her, "I be going. Me -master- calls…" a sardonic title for his dragon, sighing as he picks up the plate of food, eyes flashing back to her, "Dun forget, I care fer ya. But ya be greater than all this. Ya be going ta change the world. So ya should." A brief smile for that, which fades when he turn to leave, eyes narrowing as he goes back to his dark brooding.

Kiley almost pulls away when he doesn't take it, fidgeting even more until he does. She doesn't look at him when he reads it, not looking up until he pushes back in his chair and rises. Her gaze finds him, staring as he speaks and tilting her head slight as he words. Her name has her jump slightly, her eyes dropping and then she relents with a nod. "Okay." it is a meek little response, devoid of all other emotion and feeling as her turns to leave. She remains staring at the table for a long moment before she returns to writing her letter, not stopping until it is complete. All else has been abandoned for that moment as she begins to gather her things so to send the letter shortly after her departure from the caverns.

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