Heads I Win, Tails You Lose

Xanadu Weyr - Infirmary
The infirmary here is intended for human care. It is regularly scrubbed spotless and smells of disinfectant, redwort and other herbs that are - if sometimes strong - preferable to the scents of sickness. Cots are lined up against one wall, with a set of curtains that can be pulled to give some privacy to the occupants of the cots if they so desire. They're mostly used for examinations of patients and the treatment of mild injuries that won't require long term care; near the back are some more private areas with folding dividers.
There's a number of cabinets that stand off against another wall, instruments and medications stored against when they will be needed, and a back room holds those supplies seldom required.
A desk with chair is set just off of the doorway to the caverns, meant for the healer to sit and catch up on record keeping after a long day's work or await patients. If things get too busy, the patients can do the waiting on a set of uncomfortable chairs set nearby. The other doorway comes directly from the clearing, wide enough for a team to carry a stretcher through.

Warning: If you don't like dudes makin' out, this isn't the log for you, sorz.

ONE FISH TWO FISH RED ILA BLUE ILA. THIS COUNTS AS A SET. No? Just a little bit of a set. A teeny — FINE. WELL GRATS. IT'S SPRING. And you know what spring means, right? SHOWERS. THE FUN KIND (INSERT BROW WAGGLE HERE). Just kidding; don't get too excited: Ila'den isn't all that wet, but it is wet outside, and he is shouldering his way into the infirmary. Maybe his eye does trail to that spot on the floor where there was definitely once a little bit of his weyrmate's blood, maybe his eye does linger on the spot where Zen DAMN NEAR KILLED HIM for being PERFECTLY POLITE to tiny red-headed healers (you will never convince him otherwise, shut up), maybe he does part with a soft sound that's hard to pin an emotion to — amusement, self-deprecation, BOTH? — especially when there's no change in his expression. NO. ILA COMES BEARING GIFTS TODAY and he's a man on a mission. He just got released from duties (the uniform says it all TELL ME THAT I WAS WRONG thisisyourfault) and — KAPOW — he's shoving back the curtain to R'hyn's PRIVATE SPACE. "You know," comes husky and low and amused, "I am pretty sure Teimyrth is going to eat Zekath, and then I'm going to have to explain that to Risali." IT WILL GET MESSY. FAST.

One nope, two nope, go nope, screw nope. It doesn't count, so perhaps its for the best that this moment captures Ila'den in a moment of reverie, events of the month previous relived so that when he busts into R'hyn's curtained area as if he owns the friggen place, the juxtaposition between the weyrmate that was and the weyrmate that is will be that much more stark. "Ila!" The bronzerider perks from his position next to the bed, blue-grey eyes bright beneath lofted brows, one of which will forever be notched by a scar from the fall. The narrow scar is almost invisible, is hardly worth noticing when there's a monstrous grin to contend with instead, nigh on splitting the rider's face in half as he lifts one arm and waves rapidly with it. More rapidly. More rapidly still. "Faranth, you're gonna hurt it again if you keep it up, stop that," breathes the healer at his side, the apprentice’s eyes squinting with every pass of Ryn's hand much too close to her eyes as she tries to fit crutches to Heryn's height. "Sorry," R'hyn says, sheepish, nose wrinkling under the force of his grin before he raises his gaze back up to Ila. It's fine. He'll just point obnoxiously at his lofted arm instead, pointer finger extending and retracting repeatedly with neon-sign obviousness as though to say 'LOOK. LOOK. LOOK.' The lack of arm cast is almost as impressive as the fact that he's standing, wobbly weight rested entirely on his good leg. "It's no use. I need to get the next size up. Don't. Do. Anything. Stupid," the healer at his side says with aggression, providing Ryn the opportunity to look ashamed of himself before she walks away. "Yeah, yeah." Not like he was going to go far anyways, not with Ila here, dressed like that (listen, you signed a waiver, I don't want to hear it), speaking words he might not entirely care about at first because he's just plain old enjoying getting to looking at his husband from a proper height. It takes a few seconds of awkward silence ensuing Ila's words for Ryn to concoct a response, and even he has to laugh at the pause, head ducking to laugh at himself before peeking up in a fashion that would have been through hair if he had any as he says, "Hey, man, it's not Zekath's fault he's more manly than Teimyrth is. Something about the voice, I think. It's just got that…" Kkkkgkkgkkghhhhh, is what it's apparently got, the noise gargled up from the depths of his throat in a terrible imitation of Zekath's mindvoice. Points for trying?

THE ONLY THING ABOUT TO GET SCREWED 'ROUND HERE IS — "R'hyn," Ila'den says slowly in response to his own name being issued, dry and still somehow amused. But despite the ARM WAVES and the FINGER POINTS and the METAPHORICAL NEON SIGNS telling him to LOOK LOOK LOOK at the freedom granted one arm, Ila'den does not look. He keeps grey eye focused on grey-blues and arches his brows, looks to that chiding healer and then back to his husband as a low hum of thought begins somewhere in his chest — as if Ila'den is trying to figure out just what the hell it is that's changed. "Did you lose weight, baby?" the bronzerider drawls, the RUDEST OF THE RUDES. "No, wait…" a beat, as that eye rakes from the bottom up and halts on R'hyn's once more. Did Ila'den just lick his lips? He did. "Don't tell me." Another beat, the hints of a smile at the corner of lips, "You cut your hair." But there's low, rumbling, husky laughter as Ila'den drops himself down into a seat and leans forward, elbow to armrest, chin to the palm of his hand. "Did you do something stupid?" he inquires, amused and interested once the healer has stepped away to get THE NEXT SIZE UP. OMINOUS AT BEST. Arguably more ominous is the suddenly furious dragon screech from outside, the one that has Ila'den imitating Zen with a slow blink at his weyrmate and then a slow smile coming across his lips. "Well. Teimyrth says you can fall off of another freaking cliff. Only he didn't say freaking." It's probably a joke. Probably. WHAT IS NOT A JOKE (OR A DRILL) IS THAT ILA'DEN HAS YET TO ACKNOWLEDGE THAT R'HYN IS NOT ONLY FREE-ARMED, but also that he is standing. "… Is it the shirt? Did they get you a new shirt, baby?" Smother him. SMOTHER HIM INTO THE GROUND. WITH YOUR LOVE.

R'hyn is not amused. His face falls out of its position of ecstatic affection, eyes tightening, lips pressing flat, chin pulling back mulishly so he can blink tiny blinks at his SUPER FUNNY DEFINITELY HILARIOUS KNEE-SLAPPIN' GOOD TIME OF A WEYRMATE. "I mean… yes," R'hyn drawls, flat and sassy because if Ila is going to be an ASSHOLE, Ryn is, of course, going to respond as if he were asking the questions for real. Ask stupid questions and you get stupid answers, ILA. "I mean… yes," he repeats because it works, hand lifting to push through exaggeratedly shortened locks in an unconscious gesture. He catches himself sadly fingering at what used to be fringe and quickly sets to fluffing it all up at terrible angles instead, dropping the pout his lips have adopted to say, once again, "I mean… yes. Yes I did." The deviation is meant to emphasize this whole thing has been stupid, from the initial backstep onto nothing to the smug manner in which his weyrmate is perched before him as he hobbles forwards on a too-short crutch, looking like nothing short of a ragdoll as he tries to make mismatched appendages work together. It isn't pretty, but he's laughing as Xermiltoth's brassy voice raises as if to drown out Teimyrth's ire, the sound somehow containing just as much amusement as the low, rolling chuckles R'hyn tries to hold back with a hand pressed to his chest. "He's welcome to drop me off one himself. I'm not gonna do the work for his lazy ass," the bronzer says, playing with fire without a damn to give about it. Besides, he's got better things to do, like lean all his weight on his crutch in a very improper manner (not THAT way), leaning dangerously in order to thumb the lapel of Ila'den's uniform before humming low in his throat. "No, but I'd suggest changing yours next time." Or else Ila will be the one needing it, promised with a flick of his eyes, dark amusement glittering in their depths before he sighs and hobble-swings back a step. "Oh well. If you can't figure it out, I guess I'll go find Cita. She was always the smartest of us." Which… isn't not true even still, dumbass, but shh. Let him have his faux pity party.

Ila'den remains stoic throughout, UNMOVED BY RYN BEING UNIMPRESSED. "Cita," Ila'den drawls, "sent these." Did Ila just open up that box and throw a MANDINGLE-SHAPED COOKIE AT HIS WEYRMATE? …He did. "Ironically," the bronzerider rasps as he throws YET ANOTHER to ping off R'hyn's person, "It's sympatico with my current thoughts on you." RIP third dingledorf cookie. We hardly knew ye. AND THEN WHAT IS ILA'DEN DOING? Something inadvisable at best. Xermiltoth might be being the bane of Teimyrth's existence, but Ila'den is being the bane of every healer in Pern radius; the older bronzerider leans forward to curl fingers in R'hyn's shirt, to extend his leg just enough to KNOCK THAT CRUTCH OFF BALANCE while pulling forward in the hopes that R'hyn falls RIGHT INTO HIS LAP. Or, you know, at least falls face first into his — "Tell me more about why I shouldn't be in this shirt, husband." It's either grit and rust and the dark whisper between silken sheets, or it's a rumble of laughter. EITHER WAY, ONE MUST AWAIT THEIR RESPONSE BEFORE THEY CAN PROPERLY POSE WHAT COMES NEXT. "… Is it your beard?"

Wait. Box? What's in the box? R'hyn perks as its lid is flipped open, natural curiosity tweaking is body up out of its slouched position against his crutch. "For me?" Well, we certainly hope not, given that it's being thrown at his person! R'hyn emits a noise not-quite squawk, not-quite squeak as he lifts his free hand to fend off the flying dingledorf, one blue-grey orb peeking open to see just what's been thrown at hi— "What the fACK," half-shrieked as another cookie gets lobbed his way, all but doubling over with the laughter that wracks his form. It's helpless, and ridiculous, catches and somehow redoubles for the use of sympatico, wheezing a choked, "Where did she get those," before losing it all over again at the sight of the sad, cracked cookie that, broken at an unfortunate angle, looks like nothing more than a drooping dick. "Womp-womp," he drawls, any further commentary lost in the sudden pitch of his body in a direction it wasn't prepared to go. Luckily (maybe? I mean. Ila might argue it would have been luckier if R'hyn had landed face first in his—) gravity is on their side, and despite his utterly graceless swandive that ends in him flinging both arms around his weyrmate's neck and clinging there like a particularly demented starfish, he lands more or less in Ila'den's lap. Shift. Wriggle. A drag of his casted leg to a slightly less awkward angle, and then Heryn is shooting Ila a look, warning running rampant for that tone of voice he's using to press an UNFAIR ADVANTAGE. "Because," the bronzer murmurs in response, fingers coming up to hook, press, twist cloth free of the topmost button, "All it does," he continues, fingers pressing into the gap he's created, skimming fingertips against skin as he moves to the next one, "is remind me exactly why I loathe buttons." Pop. But lest you think this might get too sexy, R'hyn snorts and snorts hard out of his nose, a sound that seems like it ought to have hurt as he twists the arm still around Ila's shoulders, uses it to pin his weyrhusband close and RUB HIS BEARD ALL OVER HIS FACE. "Dunno, does it feel different to you?" SCRITCHY SCRITCHY, on back into Ila's hair, where fine locks are sure to tangle in velcro bristles. "How about now?"

WHAT'S IN THE BOX? A few of his favorite things~ (dick cookies. It's just dick cookies). "Well, yes," Ila'den offers, a mimic to the way that R'hyn POINTED OUT THE OBVIOUS BEFORE as he lobs yet another cookie at his werymate — though this is less a lob and more of a lazy, backhanded fling at his weyrmate. Listen. The end result is more broken cookie dicks and NOBODY IS SURPRISED. Except for R'hyn, when he's suddenly in Ila's lap. "And how should I know?" Where Cita got them, he means. But then it doesn't matter, because one hand is catching just under R'hyn's bottom, pulling hips up higher and more firmly against his own with a growl that — would be significantly more sexy, especially given the way he arches up against R'hyn's weight, in invitation of those damn fingers, if he didn't dissolve into laughter the MOMENT R'HYN STARTED TO RUB HIS BEARD ON HIS FACE. "Ack. Alright, alright. Alright," comes between huffs and rumbles, amusement in every syllable despite the fact that he somehow manages to sound like he's placating a particularly unplacatable beast. That smile remains, that affectionate set of his eyes lingers, and then gently — gently — Ila'den is pulling arms free from his neck and bringing the fingers of his now freed hand to his lips. He brushes his mouth back and forth against them, allows a hint of teeth to scrape along knuckles before he breathes out, "Congratulations, Heryn."

"Well how should I know?," R'hyn shoots right back because TURNABOUT IS FAIR PLAY, nose wrinkling, head canting this way and that as he makes nasal imitation of the bronzerider's accent. "You could just be walking around encouraging people to associate your name with a bag of dicks." Ah, the benefits of two free arms: he's mobile enough to execute dramatic shrugs again, hands lifted to the level of his eyes, shoulders hiked up to aye before it dissolves into increasingly hysterical laughter. It abates only for the press of his weyrmate up against him, the moment startlingly still in contrast with riotous jest, air reversed back through R'hyn's teeth in a soft hiss. Fingers press in, smoothing across muscle, tracing the twist and arch of old scars before— SCRATCH SCRITCH SCRATCH. And we're back, back to grown men acting like boys, back to Ryn relenting his assault only to pepper kisses and huffs of wild laughter between scrapes of his beard against Ila's person. "What, husband, don't you like it? They let me shave it, I made it nice and scratchy just for you. Wait, no, I missed a spot," he says, fighting Ila'den's pull on his hands to nuzzle his face right into the space beneath his ear, pressing one last kiss against skin before letting himself be pulled away. R'hyn's features reflect that selfsame affection, pleasure gifting warmth to his cool gaze as eyes rove over and over Ila's features, openly enjoying every line, curve, watching more than feeling the brush of lips and drag of teeth across his skin. Well. Maybe. There comes a slight shiver, the gentlest of tremors that skate down his spine, makes him lean to press his forehead against Ila'den's, pulling his hand away that it might settle against his cheek to brush his thumb, featherlight, across the rise of bone against skin. "I love you." Three little words are spoken, weighty in the wake of that momentary silence. Fingers tighten, pulling Ila tighter against him, mounting pressure as if intending to fuse them together or merge them by the sheer force of it. It lasts only seconds, the length of time it takes him to draw a long breath, and then it's over. He releases Ila on the exhale, hands dropping to curl into the fabric of his shirt, forehead left to gently rest as he continues to speak. "I don't tell you enough because I didn't think I had to," he says, thumbs rubbing small circles, "but now I'm not quite sure that was right. I love you. I love you, and you deserve to know it, to hear it, no matter how… ridiculously inadequate it seems for what it is I feel for you. I—" Words finally run out, their fleeing marked by a sigh and a shake of his head before he tilts his chin to press a kiss beneath eyepatch, eye, and finally the space between Ila's brows before lowering his forehead to rest against his weyrmate's again.

"I don't need to hear it, Heryn," comes soft, a mere rasp of sound that's gentle in its quiet, "because I already know." He already knows that R'hyn loves him, he already knows that there is no real definition, no platitude or idioms or clever play of words that could encompass just what this is that they have between them. "I see it every time you look at me. I hear it every time you laugh." He feels it in fingers and skin, echoes it in the press of lips and every shared breath. It's in their children, in their home, in every single time they fought like hell to get back to each other. "But," he continues, "if it is important to you, then I will say it as often as you need — as many times as you need to hear it." A big thing, coming from a man who hardly utters those same three words to his own children. That's why one hand is suddenly at the back of R'hyn's head as Ila'den tilts into that press of forehead and finds R'hyn's lips with his own — a long press, heated, and wanting, and demanding, where he paints a growl of, "I love you," against lips before he drops hes head, to nip neck, and clavicle, and shoulder, every time with another growl of, "I love you, I love you, I love you." And those fingers are shifting, dropping to that space between their bodies and invading it, to push up against R'hyn's abdomen, to splay beneath shirts with another, "I love you," before one arm bands around R'hyn's hips and the other catches his hair again, to pull him in for another slow burn, for another searing kiss that — "AHEM." — IS RUDELY INTERRUPTED BY THAT THERE HEALER. Ila'den's entire body goes tense, his fingers grip tighter — bruisingly so — and then ALL THE FIGHT JUST GOES OUT OF HIM. That STUPID, BIG MAN RELAXES right beneath R'hyn, slumps back into his chair as one hand traces lazy symbols against the injured bronzerider's lowerback. HEADTILT, WOLFISH GRIN. "Where is little Fire? I'm sure she could ramble of a thousand facts about how this promotes healing, et cetera, et cetera." SHAME. SHAME. SHAMEEEEE.

They feel it in the earth. They feel it in the water. They smell it in the air. "Ila-" R'hyn starts, but whatever reciprocation or perhaps protestation he might have offered is cut short by the searing press of Ila'den's lips against his, and he can't help it — he revels in the devolution, drowns in it, surrenders attempts at explanations and rational thought in favor of this, this wordless communication that has long been their forte, in the push of hands beneath clothing, over shoulders, stretching fabric to its limits against buttons - damnable buttons - to seek skin, find more, pour just as much into the wild press of lips and tongue as he receives. That first 'I love you' elicits a whimper caused as much by the words themselves as by the lack of lips against his, blunt nails digging in where they might in visceral reaction. Each repetition earns similar results, hushed exhales, low, strangled sounds, even once a feral growl pressed to Ila's temple as hands splay across his abdomen, sentiment and temptation so much, too much to contain. R'hyn rocks into the slide of Ila'den's hands on his skin, chin tipping to allow teeth to sink into the curve of the bronzer's ear, an all-too-gentle but all-too-telling slidepulldrag that ends with a rough, panted exhale that's only too willing to reverse itself into a gasp. "Ila," R'hyn says again, one word somehow encapsulating the emotion of three, broken with intimation and wanting as his hair is caught up in his weyrmate's hands and he's only too willing to surrender, to the man, to the kiss, to everything it means, has meant, the promises he returns with every shift and press of lips, every languid curl of tongue, every— "AHEM." — every tear R'hyn isn't aware he's shed until he jerks back, blinks eyes open before pressing them closed just as fast, thighs instinctively tightening to keep him upright as hands lift to dash them away with their heels. His throat clears, voice rough in many-ways-damned as he says, "Listen. Can you give us a minute?" The inquiry is treated with SUSPICION the likes of which R'hyn hopes to belay with an added, "Literally a minute. You can even count." The healer's eyes narrow mulishly, perhaps proving why she's been chosen to deal with this patient in particular, but after a beat she steps back around the curtain — and proceeds to count loudly towards sixty. R'hyn's eyes roll ceilingwards, briefly aggrieved by this nonsense, head shaking ever so slightly as he ducks to press his lips against Ila'den's again, gentle, chaste, repeated once, twice, three times, again and again in a seemingly helpless frenzy before he replaces lips with thumbs, creating both a barrier and a focus for himself as he sways, hovers anyways, attempting to wrestle himself under control as he says, "It isn't… I don't… Words." He marshals himself by leaning back, putting as much distance between them as their position will allow, pushing hands back into Ila's hair, combing through it with fingers content to dismantle small tangles, catch at ends, roll them between fingers for the seeming pleasure of hearing strands crackle against one another. Anything to distract from the fading sting of his own eyes. "I know you don't need them. Neither do I. I know that I'm… that I'm loved in a… in a way I never once expected to know," he says, voice catching on a breathy, humorless laugh. "But you deserve them," he says, gaze lifting to meet Ila's, eyes lit with a peculiar infusion of happy sadness. "You deserve them and I—" "THIRTY." R'hyn's words die on a sigh, shift instead to a breathed, "This is ridiculous." Translation: HE GIVES UP, posture changing from its curl of somber adoration to one of wry aggression as he digs into Ila's box, hurls a cookie through the curtain, and shouts, "Eat a dick!" at the waiting healer.

It's so much more than that, isn't it? It's something so much more profound than every press of lips, every shared exhale, every echoed gasp. It's more than fingers, and bodies, and surrender; it's more than primal desires, than the basest want and need and pleasepleasepleaseplease. It's more than words rendered moot by action, by reaction, by the reiteration of, 'I love you, I love you, I love you,' behind every touch, beneath an awareness so encompassing of each other that it robs their ability to be aware of anything else. It's more than tension, more than give and take and long nights spent beside cots in infirmaries or curled up in their own bed, singing each other back to sleep; it's more than every, 'Ila,' or every, "R'hyn." It's more than tiny hands, and tiny eyes, and tiny people whose adoration speaks to the love, and acceptance, and feeling wanted that they find at home. It's just… more. It's more than there are words in any language combined, something that's beyond measures of breath, or time, or distance. It's as infinite as the stars, as inexplicable as the universe, as breath-takingly haunting as staring into infinity and trying to explain just what that means to somebody who's never even glimpsed the world. And here is Ila'den's whole world, slidepulldragging on the shell of his ear in a way that elicits a growl and an upward surge of hips, a tightening of hands. The man who narrows down his point of view to this: this contact, this exchange of everything that they are separately in an attempt to be closerclosercloser. And then it's ruined. IT'S RUINED BY ONE PRAT OF A HEALER WITH ONE PRAT OF A SENSE OF HUMOR AND ONE PRAT OF A WEYRMATE WHO LEAVES THINGS UNSPOKEN WHEN HE STILL HAD 30 SECONDS TO PULL THAT SHIT OFF. But Ila'den, who just a moment ago was sharp intensity; who was hyperfocused and hyperaware of his weyrmate as the pads of thumbs brushed away the wet of tears as that lone grey eye jumped between grey-blues, as he listened to R'hyn as if R'hyn were the only person in the world who ever mattered and ever would, Ila'den is laughing. There's grit and gravel and the lingering vestiges of something illicit and alpha and handstwistinginhairandpulling when his weyrmate throws cookies and MAKES PUNS. And then the gentled lines of humor fade, leave behind something quietly intense once more in their wake as Ila'den's hands drop to cup one of R'hyn's cheeks and his thumb sweeps backward over cheekbone once, twice, three times. "I don't deserve any of this, Heryn. Not you, not Cita, not —" "FOURTY-FIVE!" " — any of our children. I would have never been this version of me if I had never met you." "FIFTY-FIVE." A beat, and there's a sigh. "But we're breaking out of this joint, come on baby. If I can't fuck you in peace on a chair, then a man has to resort to desperate measures." And… and yeah. Ila did totally just ABUSE ALL HIS STUPID STRENGTH to haul R'hyn over a shoulder, shove open that curtain, and MAKE FOR THE DOOR. RIP. That healer looks about ready to spit fire, and you can bet your ass that there will be an entire team of apprentices throwing themselves on Ila to keep him from kidnapping their ward before he even has enough time to reach the door. Bless. But he does try.

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