It's Not All Work

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.

It's that time of night when the skies are mostly cleared of dragons. Transport and delivery have made their rounds and shifts are coming to an end. Dinner in the caverns is hot and delicious as always, as is the food here in the taverns. But most people who frequent this place are searching for something else to fill their bellies with! Drink for the stomach, entertainment for the body and mind! Tonight, the tavern has a band of harpers playing music on a slightly raised stage. Thumping boots and clapping hands keep time as instruments are strummed, drummed, and plucked in a merry tune. Tavernmaids weave in and out, carrying drinks and conversation to people. Ka'el is not an unfamiliar face within the Wanderin' Wherry. He's the Weyrleader…he's also a young Weyrleader who can't fully disregard life's games when he's presented with them. And with the turnday party behind him and the plague and other events weighing heavily on his mind, tonight seems like the sort of night to unwind! Perhaps that's why he's at a table in the middle of an arm wrestling match with another man with shouts and cheers going up as the clutched hands weave back and forth.

There /is/ a place to have drinks in Monaco, but when people know you and you don't go out much…they tend to stare when you do show up. To escape all those odd looks, it seems that Miyan has decided that Xanadu's tavern is where she'll enjoy a few hours this evening. The Wingleader is just arriving, but she's knotless today and wearing a knee-length dress instead of riding gear. She claims a drink from the bar before glancing around…and managing to spot a familiar face when she does. Only…there's also arm wrestling involved. "Are you good enough at this for me to place a bet?" Not that she actually would. Miyan grins, wandering up behind Ka'el's opponent and shooting the Weyrleader a tiny wave. Distraction!

Kera finds herself at the tavern as well, not a normal hangout since she doesn't drink very much, but she can be seen there on occassion. Ducking inside she listens to the harpers on the little stage while scanning what she can see of the room. A little gathering around one of the tables catches her eye. But they are playing tricks on her so she drifts that way, nodding and offering a quiet greeting to people she knows. Then she sees there were no tricks of the light messing with her eyes. As bets are yelled about and wagers taken on the outcome, Kera just chuckles at the silliness of the occassion. Sidling towards Miyan, she tips her head in greeting and murmurs softly "You wagering too?"

At one point, it looks as if the Weyrleader is done for! His arm is being bent closer, and closer, and closer to that tableto- no! He's making a glorious comeback with what must be a sudden surge of strength! The arms are level again, knuckles pointing straight up, and then Ka'el has the advantage! He pushes harder and harder, biceps fighting against bicep to either keep the upper hand or regain it, depending. Both Ka'el and his competitor grunt and growl with effort. Bets have been placed. This is for all or nothing! And…hey! There's a familiar face he wasn't expecting to see. Eyes flit momentarily to Miyan, hearing her tease and grinning for it. "You…just…wait!" he gloats, but alas. Maybe he should've saved the gloating for after the win! His moment's distraction will cost him, and the other guy, a black-haired fellow with an uneven beard, takes the advantage and presses all that he has left in him and… thunk! A combination of cheers and groans go up as Ka'el's arm is successfully wrestled down into submission. "Argh!" is his cry of defeat as he releases his hold and gives his squeezed hand a shake. The other guy does the same, fist pumping after. Ka'el laughs and many voices raise up about coins and rematches and next rounds. "Not me, that was my fifth!" declares Ka'el, standing and rubbing his arm. "And you" he rounds on Miyan, "owe me a drink for costing me my match!" he says, his good-natured grin prevailing throughout. "…Did you wager on me?" he asks, looking to Kera too with a hopeful look. "How much? Was it a lot?"

"Kera, nice to see you." Miyan smiles at the woman before shaking her head and glancing to the table. "I'm not sure this would be the best thing to place a bet on…" She trails off, just in time to see the struggle come to a head and Ka'el…lose. Awww! The greenie winces a little bit when she sees the the hand hit the table. "And /that/ is why this isn't something she bets on." The woman takes a little sip of her drink, but Ka'el only gets a cheeky sort of grin. "I didn't do a thing…it's your own fault for being distracted! Though maybe you do deserve something for the effort."

Kera can only nod in agreement with Miyan over her caution in betting. "Wise move." is muttered to the green visitor as the back of Ka'el's hand slaps the tabletop soundly. 'Ouch'. "Nice try sir." Head shakes negatively at the question "You know I never bet." And if she did, she would have just lost some marks. That isn't voiced though, nono.

"Is it my fault that you came in at the exact moment that you did? Hardly!" remarks Ka'el who moves out of the way so that someone else can arm-wrestle. There are plenty of takers! Plenty of more marks to win and lose. He grins as he moves closer to the two women and away from the heart of the raucus noise. "I'll have you both know, since you missed my splendor earlier, that I did win four times. And not because anyone feared the wrath of a Weyrleader," he says with a glance behind him, smirking lightly. "Welcome back to Xanadu!" he offers to Miyan, his smile a broad one. "You're always welcome, of course. Hospitality rules say that I should be the one to buy a drink for you, the both of you, buuut since at lease one of you was the cause of my demise…" A small laugh and he gestures to a nearby table. "Care to take a seat? And Kera, you've always been wise never to wager either for or against me, I'll have to admit."

"I don't usually bet…in most cases I leave that to J'yn." Miyan smiles broadly at Kera before letting her gaze slide over to Ka'el. "Isn't the Weyrleader supposed to be well focused or some such nonsense?" The greenie laughs quietly for a moment before dipping her head, "Thank you…and yes, to make up for it we'll put the hospitality aside and I'll buy both of you a drink. Kera deserves one after that mess back at the healer hall." The glass crafter is already headed over to the indicated table and calling over someone to place drink orders.

Kera grins, flashing a glance to Miyan briefly as Ka'el steps around and away from the ruckus the next little contest of arms is causing. She nods seriously, very serious as if she believes Ka'el won every match he claims, while trying not to repress a grin. Brow lifts in amusement at Miyan's good natured 'Weyrleader teases' Following the others to wherever Ka'el wants to sit, she starts raises a hand at his offer of buying a drink. Preparing to go into her 'I don't drink' line, she blinks to Miyan as the other greeny's words sink in "Ya know, you're right. One drink can't hurt too much. Maybe I'll figure out how to ask for a sevenday off duty, after being away from the Weyr for the last couple of sevenday." She muses seeming at random as she looks off into the distance. But soon crack a grin the Weyrleader and Miyan.

Ka'el is a model example of focused professionalism! .. <.< *cough* Most times! "Thank you," he says to the very generous Miyan, nodding to her before pulling out chairs and taking a seat afterward. Once that tavernmaid makes her way to their table (which doesn't take very long. Yay super Weyrleader powers!) he asks for a simple ale as his drink. "So, you had to come back and see a bit more of our Weyr, did you?" said to Miyan. "I know each boasts the same, but I've to say that Xanadu has the finest ales and spirits!" Which Kera is going to partake in? Color him surprised! He gently lifts his brows as he peers the healer, a light smirk curving his lips. "A case of quarantine has you wanting to live a little, Kera?" he asks. "Why on Pern would you need a sevenday off? Out've curiosity. I couldn't imagine you not working for a seven! You'd find something to heal or someone who needs aid before long. Your fingers would be itching to change a bloody bandage or stitch up a leg."

"You certainly deserve some time off, perhaps a small vacation somewhere." Miyan smiles before glancing between Kera and Ka'el. "Though it sounds like you aren't one that takes vacations very often." There's a nod of thanks before the greenie slips into her chair and raises an eyebrow at Ka'el's words. "Really? The finest? I'll have to make sure, we'll see if it can beat out Monaco." Though really, the greenie is just teasing again. Once the drinks have been ordered, a man is off to fetch them and leave the trio to their chattering. "Blood…" That makes Miyan shudder.

Kera drops into seat, scooching it a couple inches closer to the table. Trusting those that are more knowledgeable about drinking make the order, she looks to Miyan curiously. "So you travel about sampling differant taverns?" Not a totally unheard of hobby, and wouldn't be the first person she met with that goal. A little shrug to Ka'el and chuckling at his taunt of her work habits. "Yea well, I'll direct my stitching urges to some threadwork. But maybe I'll just do nothing for a couple of days. Who knows? Plus, I wouldn't mind checking in on my parents to make sure they are alright. And a couple other people."

"I've confidence in our ales. Though from what I remember from Monaco's, you're giving us a run for our marks," answers Ka'el. "I miss your little one already. Lyria, right? She was … she had a lot of energy," he says with a grin. "And she may be Skyler's first real friend. She'll have to visit again soon. I'm … admittedly not sure when children can go Between safely, but when that time comes, Skyler will pay a visit to her too." His eyes shift to Kera, and he nods a little. "You might've done well with Comet. They know Pern like the back of their hands, and their job makes visiting easy." He glances between the two women. "So, the two've you were up at Healer Hall during the lock in together? What was that like?"

"Not at all, I usually find my drinks at Monaco…but I wanted a slight change of scenery and Xanadu seemed like a nice option." Miyan smiles at Kera, which is just when their drinks arrive. The glasses are passed out and Miyan immediately takes a sip of hers. There's an approving sort of look as well as a nod to Ka'el, "I see where you get that confidence in your drinks now…it's quite good." Mention of Lyria earns a warm smile, the kind only reserved for your children. "She always has energy…and she hasn't quieted about Skyler since she came back. When can we go visit? Does he like the toys? How much cake did he have? I'll have to bring her by for another visit."

Speak of the baby and… no, he's not arriving at the tavern. Skyler may be precocious (at least in the minds of his parents), but he's not ready to go drinking yet. Soriana, on the other hand, is most definitely ready for a drink. She's technically smiling! …technically. On the other hand, she's entering the tavern, going directly to the bar, and asking for a fortified wine. It's wine! It's an elegant drink! It's also strong, because today… yeah, she could go for some of that. It takes just long enough to pour that she happens to look around the room as it does. So… what's happening? Is anything exploding?

Kera chuckles and gives a little shake of her head "I don't know about that. Granted Comet does a bit more traveling than others, but wouldn't that be a bit selfish to get into a Wing for the simple wish to travel more?" The drinks arrive and Kera takes one of the mugs. Smiling and lifting it to encourage others to dig in, and takes a couple of little sips. Talking turns to Skyler and Lyria and the bugging of adults that little kids to so well when they want something. Movement at the bar catches her attention and she waves to the Weyrwoman from across the room, then takes another sip. "Hmm, this isn't so bad."

Ka'el nods his thanks once their drinks are here, and he makes a few gestures to the man that brings them. A small, meant-to-be-inconspicuous gesture to Miyan. A slight look to his coin pouch. Completed with a shake of his head. She no pay! He grins a bit, then turns back to the conversation at hand, beaming at the compliment given by Miyan. Both ale and Skyler related ones. "Well I'm happy to report that he loves his figurines, and you can tell her that they're one of his favorite gifts. That along with a certain fuzzy firelizard," said with a chuckle to Kera. He takes a swallow of his ale. "We didn't quite make it to noon, but we did get a few extra candlemarks! And Kera," he laughs, "that is the main reason anyone wishes to be tapped to Comet. To see Pern and its people. To meet and mingle and learn the culture of other places. I can think of few who are in it just to deliver messages and come straight home." Another slow sip is taken as he scans the tavern crowd, spotting a familiar head of hair. Soriana is waved at. Look over here!

"Even an hour of extra sleep becomes bliss when there are kids involved. I'm glad that he liked his gifts though." Miyan smiles and takes another sip of her drink before following Ka'el's gaze over to Soriana. There's a bright smile for the woman, as well as a dip of the head and a wave. "It's quite good, isn't it?" This is said to Kera. "I'm not a fan of most things, but…I do enjoy this drink."

There are people waving at her. Does that mean that they've discovered something exploding? It's probably a- wait. Soriana knows those people. Which doesn't mean that they haven't found an explosion, but does mean that there might also be other reasons why they'd want to get her attention. Maybe, just maybe, she can risk it… just this once. Besides, they've already seen her so it's too late to run away. Instead, she waves back, waiting for another moment to pick up her drink and then… going on over to meet them. She gets through her first couple of sips en route, which is not the only reason why she smiles as she arrives. "Good evening!" she says. There's only a tiny bit of 'please say it is good and nothing has gone wrong' in her tone.

Kera nods agreeably to Miyan and peers into her mug. "I'm the farthest thing from an expert, my ale experiance pales compared to some of my table companions, not at all bitter like I expected." And did she just insinuate Ka'el enjoys ale tooo much? Nah, she would never say that about anyone. Looking bwtweeen the two, Kera leans back in her seat some smiling at Skyler's love of his gifts "He'll have plenty to keep himself entertained that's for sure. If the mini mountain of gifts I remember is any sorta clue." She seems a bit surprised by Ka'el's announcement concerning Comet Wing and nods thoughtfully. "Hmm. Guess I hadn't thought of it that way." Taking another little sip of the ale and setting the glass down, as Soriana joins the table "G'evening Weyrwoman."

"Ha, you're telling me," remarks Ka'el to Miyan. I didn't realize how much I valued sleep until he was born. It's a luxury most don't even realize they have." He sits back in his chair a little, smirking at Kera. Well, he does like ale! That's no secret. And luckily, he's known to partake only at appropriate times. "If you really do wish to take a seven, Kera, all you have to do is fill out a request form. With as little time that you actually do take off, I don't see it being a problem, especially considering what you went through at the Hall." He smiles kindly to her. "Miyan, what wing do you fly for at Monaco Bay? I Think you've told me before but…apparently, I'm getting old," he says, tapping his temple before gesturing to a seat for Sori. "Eeeevenin'," he answers in return, smirking. Nothing blown up yet, Weyrwoman! "Easy day?"

"Good evening!" Miyan smiles at Soriana and should probably be going through with formalities. But there are drinks and such to be had. "We're just talking a bit about how important sleep becomes once you have kids. A few more turns and the both of you will get more sleep again I'm sure!" The greenie grins at Ka'el and Soriana before nodding to Kera. "I usually leave the choices to J'yn. He…knows quite a bit about drinks." Understatement! "Wingleader for Phantasm…it's our crafter wing, for riders and non-riders both." Odd as that may be. "Speaking of…." She trails off for a moment frowning, "It looks like there's a problem in the beast pens they need a bit of help with. I hate to cut the evening short, but I'm sure we'll all meet again soon. Have a pleasant night!" And then she's heading out!

Easy. Ha! Soriana does not laugh out loud. She does give Ka'el a look. "It'll be on your desk in the morning." And then she has another sip of her wine, because drinks are definitely more important than formalities. Sleep? "I think I've forgotten what it's like." Which is why she has another sip, taking Miyan's comment about the creater wing without any particular sign of surprise and then lowering it as the wingleader is… called away! She waves, then turns a wry look on Ka'el because of course the two of them know nothing about sudden problems needing attention. Like right now, that chair needs attention… aka her butt, and Soriana delivers.

Kera nods over the mug she's taking her time in draining. "I've got it filled out, just not turned in yet. Wanted to let things settle a day or so." Taking another sip, Miyan gets a grin and a little from being in a craft wing. "Yayy for crafters." Lifting her mug slightly, more sips are taken as the greeny vacates her seat and is called away. Waving to the visitor "Nice seeing you again." Then the just empty seat is occupied by Soriana who is regarded with a silly little grin. The ale must be kicking in, particularly since her mug is mostly empty now.

"Ah, so your Phantasm wing is like our Asteroid wing," says Ka'el, brows lifting at the similarities heard. "Riders and non-riders. I was a member for a while when I was first posted as a smithcraft apprentice. Kera here is a member now, as a rider and senior apprentice healer." Wings fascinate him … which is good, considering he's in charge of them. "What other w-…" he begins to ask, but … uh oh. Duty calls! He pauses at her distraction, nodding knowingly as she takes her leave. "Was good to see you, Miyan. Clear skies!" he says, rising politely when she does, which conveniently enables him to easily move and pull out Soriana's chair for her. "Aw. You're not supposed to leave me work.." he says with a playful pout that, after a moment, shifts to something slightly less playful. "Remind me to speak to you later about Quasar," he says, moving back to his seat. "Woah, there.." He notes Kera's nearly empty mug! "You all but chugged that down. Nice an' slow is key. You alright?"

Wait, Kera's also got a form that… ohhh, vacation time. Soriana relaxes again. She doesn't have to worry about that! It's a straightforward matter for the weyrleader… and the infirmary staff, who technically report up through her, but it's not like they ever bother her with anything at the level of staffing. Maybe it'll be different with a sickness in the wild, but… there's always some sort of illness, right? This one is (hopefully) not that much different. After another sip of her wine (it's like she's trying to catch up to Kera), Soriana smirks to Ka'el. "Yes I am," she says, then arches brows at him. Quasar. His wing. Her curiosity's unmistakable, but after a moment, she just nods. "Sure." One thing at a time, and the thing for now is… another sip of wine!

Kera settles more comfortably in the chair and leans forward, propping her elbows on the table. Her attention begins to drift between Soriana and Ka'el, and there is also the lively tune the harpers are enthusitically. Eyeing the mug when it's the bronzer points out her mug is nearly empty, she shrugs and makes it all the way empty before plonking it down gently "I didn't think it would be acceptable to take the mug home with sir." A big grin flashes between the Weyrleaders and she pushes up from the table. "Thank you for the drink sir. I should probably be heading home before I get to feeling lazier than I already do." Grinning to Soriana as her wine gets sipped at as if demonstrating proper drinking technique. "I'll work on drinking slower the next time I have a mug." Whenever that may be. Sending a not too steady salute to both. "Hope you both have a good evening." Then Kera manages her way to the door and out of it.

"Pft. Then I'll leave you work next time. See how much you like it," is Ka'el's counter before he takes a haughty gulp of ale. So there! He grins after the swallow though and does not elaborate about the wing-talk. This is hardly the time or place! At home, maybe. In the office, likely. Skyler won't be such a large distraction there. As for distractions here, there are plenty! The music and the drinking and conversation. Kera seems definitely distracted with lazy feelings, and he chuckles, again rising when she does so. "No thanks necessary. You'll be alright?" he asks with slightly lifted brows. He watches her go, watching for steadiness in her gait. He'll keep mind out for Kanekith, in case Moncerath senses trouble! Aaaand now he sits down again, looks to his weyrmate and her drink. "You're becoming a lush," he says with a smirk.

"You do that," Soriana retorts. Which is… her pithy rejoinder… or else her observation of the standing nature of reality. Either/or! Just like now is neither the time nor the place for wing talk. Home might be, but after they've gotten Skyler to bed, who has the energy to talk about work? Especially when they've got all day in an office… er. All day in an office when they aren't off in other meetings… to discuss it. So they will, then! For now, there's wine to be sipped and wingriders to… be sent off? Apparently. "Have a good night," Soriana says to Kera, then lifts her glass. Halfway to her lips and… she pauses, and looks at Ka'el. "…Hannista says they won't send anyone with the supply caravan, and Ressac's threatening to ground their fleet." And then she has that sip of wine.

Ka'el is taking a drink from his mug when she speaks of their beholden areas. Well, two of them anyway. He quirks a brow, lips still around the rim of his cup. " … Because they fear they'll be exposed to illness?" he assumes, setting his mug down. "I can't imagine it's purely utter … defiance. Have they been contacted?"

Soriana nods to Ka'el. Guessed it in one! "I've been on the radio to them. Hannista's harper is talking to the holder there. He's…" She frowns, shakes her head. "…concerned for his hold." Aka is stubborn as a mule and convinced that as long as nobody from the outside comes into contact with his people, they'll be fine. "It'd be less of a worry if we weren't expecting tinctures from them. The woodcrafters can wait." She sighs. "Ressac, I sent P'an to. He should be able to talk them around." Or at least, so she hopes… but the greenrider's persuasive and has spent enough time on a ship that he can speak the seahold's language. "As long as we get the trade ships moving, the fishers can stay at sea all month if they want."

"As illness goes, this plague isn't one for the record books." Ka'el knocks his knuckles on the wooden table top. "I've gone through the archives looking for any history Xanadu might have had with widespread illness. There've been some … " he shakes his head "bad ones. Nothin' that's wiped out a population, but a handful that've been pretty serious with recorded deaths. But … from what I can tell and from what I've gathered from Kera, this one really could be thought of as mild. I think what we're doing will be enough to keep anything that does make it here trivial." Again, knocking on wood is heard! "Buuuut, if Hannista's holder didn't know that at first, I don't blame him for being cautious. But," a snort, "if you've been radioing them and information's been passed, then that's just hardheadedness." A pause and he looks to her drink with a half smirk. "No wonder," he remarks of it. ".. Gonna give it a little more time for sense to sink in before a diplomatic visit is made?"

Soriana's lips quirk, but she nods. Wood being knocked on… "Yeah. Unless this one mutates… or takes a turn…" She frowns. "We're lucky it's summer. These things are often worse when it's cold out." Poor northern continent! "The harper at Hannista thinks he can smooth it out." That's half of what harpers are for, right? To have pretty words that make for calm and reason. "Least, that's what his last message said." She shrugs. Who really knows? "I've hardly got time for a visit, do I?" Soriana's smile now is a wry one. "It won't do the caravan much harm if it's delayed a few days, and maybe a camp outside his hold will help persuade him. Worst case, we send a transport dragon… and bill him for it." Another sip of her wine. "Ressac's not doing anything yet, they're just… oh, you know him." He's crankier than Skyler after a napless day, is what Soriana does not say because she's being polite and there are people here who could be listening. "He'll come around."

"There was one about boils … ages ago. Couldn't imagine being a Weyrleader with a Weyr suffering from something that's .. out of my hands. Something I can't see and grab and fight against, unlike Thread." Not that anyone would've gone about grabbing any of that! "Invisible enemies. Or an enemy within, however you look at it," Ka'el muses, looking momentarily thoughtful as he mulls over his own words. Sori's words. Their holds. "My hope goes out to the harper, then. May his influence be strong and reason break through. If not.." His nose twitches marginally. "Well figure something out." Transport dragon to the rescue! Complete with a bill for the added effort. He smirks, amused. "They'll both come around when they realize they're the only ones acting as ridiculous as they are. The only question is who'll wise up first?" He peers into his mug, mostly empty now, and drains the last of the dark ale. "I could always challenge the both of them to an arm wrestling match," he says. "With the winner making the end decision. I'm a four-time champion tonight. You missed it." He lifts an arm, flexes. "Another glass?" he asks, nodding to her wine. "Sounds to me like you've earned it." And he … whether or not he's done anything today to earn another drink will order one too if she does and take this time to unwind.

"Healer's… hard," Soriana says, and frowns. Not that she knows about the human side of it more than circumstantially, but some things are similar enough whether they're for a person on two legs or four. "…at least Skyler's healthy." So far. Still. The nursery takes precautions, but still. If one kid there gets something… she's seen how it spreads. She exhales slowly, looks up across the tavern. But if they take their kid out… everyone will panic, and this sickness isn't so bad… so far, in the Xanadu summer. Better to keep things calm and carry on, and so she nods, only a little absently, about Hannista's harper and Ressac's ships. "Quarter mark on Ressac," she says, for no particular reason other than that she might as well. Better to wager on it than worry about it… though it would have been better still to wager on that arm-wrestling contest. "Now that's how we should pick our meetings. Whoever wins the wrestling match gets first slot. It'd be…" She pauses a moment, considers on that. "…something." Definitely something. Soriana tips up her glass and has another sip of her wine, then hmms at Ka'el. "…sure." She doesn't need to think any more tonight, just to unwind over drinks with her weyrmate, in a tavern full of happy (and healthy) people, and then stagger home to where Sorrin's been spending the night with Skyler and getting him to bed. Tomorrow's another day, likely to be faced with not enough sleep and too many problems… but at least for tonight, they can relax.

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