Ierne Weyrhold - The Firepit

The outside of the Firepit is notable for the broad patio, paved in a haphazard mosaic of black and red stone. Obsidian forms the outer edge of the eponymous firepit, where a bonfire is kept regularly burning at night for both ambience and for clients to cook kebabs in. A few tables and matching chairs made of dark wood and with red and white upholstery are scattered about for general use.
Over the stout, single wooden door — emblazoned with the words: 'The Firepit' — is a red, white, and black awning that provides some shade. The interior of the place is composed of dark wood and dimly lit with oil lamps scattered tastefully throughout. The floor is covered in sawdust that's regularly replaced and there are a plethora of long tables for most people to dine communally at. A handful of smaller tables are scattered about for more private dining, as well. A bar occupies the full right side of the restaurant, while a series of grills, stoves, and ovens are arrayed toward the back where the cooks can be seen preparing food. A long counter separates the cooking space from the dining space, although there are stools available for those that would prefer to eat there.
The smells of grilled meat and barbecue sauce are prominent here, with freshly baked rolls making an appearance from time to time; music can occasionally be heard over the din of the kitchen, and the place, overall, seems to do its best business later in the day.

Sunshine brilliantly covers the island of Ierne, from one coastline to the other. The heat is sweltering despite the northwest wind that gusts in from time to time; the wind a welcomed relief to some. Other's, like A'dmar, take to indoor shelters, where the shade and cold drinks create a cool ambiance. The exotic arabic descendent of an ancient race, known more recently as being desert nomads, is sitting at the bar, stripped down to just a thin shirt and shorts. A jacket hangs over the back of his chair, a jacket that looks durable for *between*, perhaps a hint that he was something other than a lonely patron endulging in a iced drink. There are other clients in the fire pit today as well, enjoying early dinners as the BBQ is fired up and cooking a variety of meats and veggies. It looks to be slow despite the milling folk, since there are several tables and chairs empty still and the bar was all but open save for that one figure belonging to A'dmar.

Into the relatively cooler darkness of the Firepit enters a singular woman, stepping in just as a couple exit. That the door is held open for her by the gentleman helps a great deal because her arms are not free to assist her; she's juggling several packages, the handles of several bags looped on both her wrists, her jacket thrown over one arm with her knot tucked out of sight in the folds of leather. That door swings shut behind her, leaving her temporarily blinded and adjusting from harsh glare to the dimness so she just stands there motionless for a few moments. Though she's wearing a loose-fitting, sleeveless sundress, feet bare in elegantly-beaded sandals with her heavy dark hair done up in a twist to be off of her neck, from the faint sheen of perspiration on her pinkened cheeks, she's felt the heat out there in the cobble-stoned and sun-filled courtyard. The servers are busy, either that or she can't see them yet, but she is calm, not seeming to mind waiting.

A'dmar is deep into his thoughts, the iced drink having an added kick to it, else he would not be sitting at the bar eyeing up the barkeep to keep refills coming. Such was the case with idle days, time plunked away at a sluggish rate, the day prolonged when there was nothing to do. While the door would not initially cause him to turn his head, for some reason this time he does, perhaps that bored with his own thoughts to find some curiosity left in life enough to look. While the woman would get a scowl any other day, he notes the packages she's juggling. She could be in need of a delivery person, right? He sets his glass down and pushes back from the chair, the stool making a scuffing noise against the floor proper. He walks right up to her and asks with a formal tone, spoken precisely as if high classed, "Might I be a service to you young lady? It looks like you've a handful there," he's offering to help ease the burden of a parcel or two. Service is the first part to sales.

The sound of wood on stone, though muffled by the sawdust prompts the woman to swing her gaze, which is idly taking in the interior of the place, towards the source. Spying the man headed her way, she naturally assumes he's heading on out and so she steps aside to allow him to pass, since she's still standing in front of the door. He's given a polite smile and a brief glance with the distant manner of one about to pass by a stranger and nothing more. When he speaks instead of walking on by, his comment prompts her reply as she tilts her head just a little, glass-green eyes more adjusted to the lighting in the place by now, dance in self-directed merriment, her gracious smile turns rueful, "In truth, I have two handfuls and more than an armful, but I've made several merchants happy with the marks I've left with them." Her jacket is slipping and in an attempt to retain that, she drops three brown-wrapped packages. Her light laughter is quiet, modulated not to bother others, "I could use a hand if you don't mind? They seem-" another glance 'round, "-busy so I guess they won't mind if I find my own seat."

"I see that," he remarks dryly, "seems you came to the right place," while he doesn't necessarily smile, there is a fetching look to him as his dark eyes measure and weigh. He continues as if to explain, "I'm in the business of delivery miss," since the boxes and armfuls have hidden much of who she is to him, save for those glass-green eyes and that rueful grin. Before he really has another moment more to introduce his intent, three packages are dropping. He's quick enough to grab one, but not all three. In his attempts to catch more than the one, one of the three slide a distance from where it slid down his arm. Well this won't do. He quickly gathers them all up and the woman's jacket, "You should hire an assistant when you go shopping," he remarks with a mundane tone about him, as if he were speaking matter-of-factly. "Yes, it's more of a walk in establishment… Where would you like to sit?" He asks while he goes about transferring some more of her packages to his arms.

She'd help him if she could, says the mildly apologetic expression on her face as he gathers packages and jacket, allowing him to take the rest of the ones in her arms. "If I did that, I'd return home with twice this amount, I'm sure," she replies easily and with a lopsided sort of grin that fades slowly as she turns her head to give the seating situation a study. Her decision is made without much hesitation at all and she points to the bar area with her chin while she lowers her arms to let slip those bag handles into her palms and ease the cramped position of her arms. "I'd like to sit where I can see them slice and dice to cook in those fascinating ovens," she says firmly, a flash of white teeth in the semi-darkness - her cheeky grin dares him to comment to that even as she gives a questioning glance to see if he minds carting her stuff all the way back there.

"I doubt that be'd such a bad thing," he notes as he balances out the packages, "seems like you don't make it here often, nearly buying out the whole place." There is an attempt to include some humor into his pitch, the pitch rises out like a sarcastic remark instead. He doesn't mind being a pack-horse, honestly, if it lands him a delivery job the freebie is worth the effort. Seeing that she heads to the bar, he glances toward his jacket to ensure that no sneak-thief came up and grabbed it while he wasn't looking. There are those in Ierne, more than there should be. Finding some space, even if it requires him using an empty chair and stacking the rest below the said chair, he piles the packages carefully, eyes turning dubiously toward the ovens she exclaims to have an interest for. A skeptical lift of his brow returns his dark gaze toward the woman, while he fishes out a business card, mentioning, "If you need help back to your hold or hall, I charge fair rates for the delivery. You wouldn't have to carry a thing either. I'll even bring it direct to your door." The business card he pushes forward has an image of an old letter, done in a foreign and ancient language, with his name on it and a 'radio' contact frequency and the name of his dragon for those who could communicate through dragon. Her cheeky grin does not register more than a flicker of acknowledgement upon the man, he was clearly offering services for a reason, and that was not because she was a pretty woman.

With another laugh, "I come far too often as it is but shopping is something I grew up deprived of." It's said lightly, again self-mockingly, unruffled by the man's reticence, perhaps welcoming it after the gushing shop-keepers. See now, that delivery comment went right over her head, either that or her attention was on those unique-looking ovens back there. She steps back that way with a confident stride when he doesn't seem to mind, bending to place her bags on the floor, then sliding them with a foot under the overhang of the counter so they won't trip anyone walking by. She rescues her jacket while he's arranging packages, checking to see that her knot is still folded out of sight, slides onto a stool and tucks the jacket on her lap. He speaks, so she turns her head towards the man again, "Thank- oh!" Blink. The card is taken and dark lashes lower to give it a long look. "Right, you did say delivery." This sinks in and she flickers a look at him, confusion swiftly masked as she admits, "I'm used to doing for myself. My upbringing and all that." Her hand flicks her own past away as unimportant, but she hasn't exactly said no. "What language is this?" Her eyes have dropped back to the card she's still holding, genuine interest in her tone while the tip of one slender finger taps the mysterious letter.

"Making up for lost time," said in a flat sardonic tone, positioning the rest of the packages just out of tripping range like the woman has. No need to foul up the servers. A few more times he flickers his gaze down to the packages, though for the most part he seems satisfied with their placement, leaning his elbow on the bar top and missing any sort of knot that would denote her as anything more than a tourist to him. He's not from the southern parts, as by his distinctive and unique features, so he there is no recognition on his face when he peeks out the corner of his eyes at the woman. "I operate the Quoin Airmail, a rather successful delivery service. We have several recommendations from clients all around Pern about the quality of our service," intoned with a pride that does spark a little tweak of his lips, faded the instant later since she admits to doing most of it herself. "I don't charge much and you -can- ride with your parcel if you like, without additional fees. Better service than the Weyr's can offer. No waiting days or sevendays for a dragon to respond to your order." He is pushy, isn't he? Yet, it seems second nature as he pulls his seat over, foot pushing on the bottom rail of the stool to hop himself back into the seat, the cushion giving a 'woosh' as his weight squishes out some of the air. As for the business card, his chin lifts up, face pointed at the bar, though dark eyes swivel and slide to the corner of his sockets, considering an answer. After a time, he notes with a chin descending, "A nomadic dialect, born in the sands of Igen ages ago."

"I suppose I am," the woman replies easily. "We made everything we owned and my da rarely allowed us to leave the stock at gathers unattended to seek the traders stalls." There's no self-pity, matter-of-fact is she as she says it with a slight rise and fall of slim shoulders. "Gift-giving is far too enjoyable for me to curtail the spending, alas." She's quite satisfied not to be recognized it seems, by the way she relaxes, hands leaving the jacket to prop her chin while both elbows rest on the counter-top. If he's pushy, she seems to take it all in stride, not commenting to his elaboration of service. Her gaze lifts with avid interest to those cooks wielding their knives so expertly back there. When the man sits instead of leaving, she flickers him a curious sidelong look, noting the jacket and making a little 'ah' of understanding. "How kind of you to interrupt your refreshment to assist me," she says silent laughter lurking in her eyes. Oh, she's had some practice with the bargaining shopkeepers in addition to spending marks, so if he wants a challenge obtaining a client, she'll give him one! At his answer about the desert dialect, she turns her head to look directly at him, a frankly curious spark in her eyes and she murmurs cryptically in another language – different than his and likely unrecognizable to him, the words containing a lilting burr, consonants soft and vowels musical. "The mother-tongue of my hold, but rarely spoken these days except in song. I said, 'The mountains rise to greet the sands.'" With a graceful movement of her hand, she indicates the letter on the card, "What does this mean? I would hear what yours sound like."

The man does seem to be in better spirits when he's back to his drink, having languished long enough that the ice has melted and taken some of the strength out of the liquor. Regardless he has a long gulp, with a satisfying smack of his lips to follow, easing himself into the backing on the stool. A sidelong cast of his dark eyes to her once again as the ice clinks against the glass, finishing up his drink in the next gulp while she speaks of 'gift giving.' There's a final flick of his tongue over his lips to wipe away the moisture of his drink, his hand falling to his lap with elbow out, canting his head, "You sound like you're pretty well off to be giving much of what you buy away. Life has brought you fortune." He notes, not as if he was envious, just as if it was something he admired, an explanation to follow, "I must admit, I see a lot of greed. It is refreshing to see otherwise." He flags down the barkeep as the man passes by, managing to snag another drink out of him before he goes off to help with the cooking. A derisive scowl finds her, "I was hoping to earn a job, but I can tell it didn't work and while the offer still stands, I'm not about to spend all day convincing you. I figure, a woman of your caliber, has an escort waiting for her. Holder, I presume? No, wait, don't tell me," he lifts a hand as he second guesses his words, a bit gruffy as he mutters, "It doesn't matter." Really, it didn't matter. Not in Ierne when all folk worked for their bread. His hands cup around the fresh cold drink, nodding in gratitude to the barkeep. That's precisely the time that she speaks in that cryptical tongue, sliding his gaze to her once again. "It would be rude of me to speak my people's language, since I am already an outcast and would further bring dishonor to them," he notes, looking into the well of his drink, "It's a letter, in place of my family's tribal name, Quoin." He hesitates, then mumbles something that almost 'bubbles' deep in his throat, burbling forth a language that uses the back of the tongue. He half smirks once he's spoken it, a soft aside, "We are the sunrunners, is what I said there."

One dark brow lifts fractionally at the man's attention to his drink, but the woman makes no comment regarding it. At the barkeep's questioning, "Miss?" after he's served the other, she says crisply, with the manner of one used to giving orders, "Juice, please, pineapple if you have it, with a dash of white wine." Dryly then to her neighbor, "Hardly. I work hard for my marks." There's another one of her self-mocking smiles as she turns a hand palm up to eye the firm skin thereupon before offering it towards him in a formal greeting, "A'dmar the card says. So you are a rider, then. I am Thea." There's a brief hesitation and then she finishes, "Formerly of Cold Stone Hold. But I have no escort." At his 'doesn't matter', perhaps thinking she's offended him, she relents. "If you want the job," she says gravely, "it is yours. But I won't need to ride with the packages." There's an unconscious flicker of pain in her sea-green eyes at the word outcast, fleeting, then gone, though her face remains serene enough. She leans forward as he decides to speak his tongue after all, lips moving silently as he pronounces the words. She repeats his words, perhaps not quite as perfectly, but a a fairly close approximation, showing her keen ear. A server, perhaps alerted by the barkeep, stops before her with a menu and for a few moments is busy conferring with him, making an order without fuss. Back to A'dmar, she asks, "Sunrunners. Sounds so… poetic. And you are… not one anymore?" The question is asked gently.

A'dmar folds his one arm across the surface of the bar, his mug bumping up against it as he holds it with the other. For a time, he stares off into a distance beyond the liquid sloshing into his mug as she orders her food and corrects him on his assumption. Eyes turn just enough to acknowledge the out-turned palm of hand, for a time staring at if like it was a foreign object thrust under his nose. Only with some reluctance does it seem that he moves his from the mug to her own hand, the formal greeting a short touch, nodding at her deduction, "Yes. Impressed up in Telgar many Turns back. Eighteen I believe…" he does the quick calculation off the top of his head, murmuring, "To a fine bronze by the name of Yarovith." The puzzle pieces don't click. It could be that he didn't have the ambition to keep up on who was running which Weyr since the name also does not bring any recognition to his face. He does draw a brow up in surprise when she mentions the job is his. The drink is promptly pushed ahead of him, changed out for some ice water. He was at least responsible in his task at hand. Drinking and riding did not sit well with this one. "I would be glad to take the job," a beat as he shrugs to her declining the ride, "Just let me know where I should drop it off and I'll fulfil my end of the contract." Verbal contract, right! There is a short lament for the drink that is only half finished when the barkeep comes by to sweep it up, the bronzer drawing forward the water with a huffed acceptance of his duty. Work came when it came, that's the way it was in Ierne. For her own effort at speaking his language, there is a disapproving squint in his eye, as if he regretted instantly his decision to speak it. By the time she looks back at him, he's gone to fishing for his soul in the bottom of the ice glass, taking out an ice cube and popping it into his mouth. The last, even if asked gently, gets a snort and a loud crunch as he gnaws down that chunk of ice into nothing, speaking after his tongue slapping to wash down the ice, "No. I was … mm, exiled from my family when I spoke of them openly… Long story, which is unimportant since it was a long time ago."

When their hands meet, though Thea's palm is smooth and well-cared for, there are calluses to be felt, giving truth to her claim that she indeed works for her marks. Her grip is firm, assured and brief. Businesslike departs a moment later though and her casual comment perhaps covers a hard swallow that she makes after asking her last question and his reply about being exiled. Striving for composure, she rejoins lightly, "Oh finish that if you want to." Amused that he's pushed his alcohol aside, she smiles with a hint of teasing to her next comment, "While I don't question your claim that you can outfly the Weyrs, there's really no hurry. You can deliver them tomorrow. In fact, tomorrow would be better." A dark brow lifts in a silent challenge. Go ahead. Argue. She doesn't seem at all disappointed that her name brings no recognition. But he does need to know where to deliver the packages. "Please take them all to Xanadu Weyr and leave them in the keeping of Ocelara. You'll find her in the Living Caverns sitting in a pile of kindling that she erroneously calls a chair."

A'dmar's may not be as smooth and well-cared for, though it's not overly rough either - a sign that he's worked with a lot of oil in his lifetime. His grip, reflects some gentleness as he doesn't squeeze her hand all that tight, and his touch is as brief as it can be. "No," he says simply, a harder edge to his tone, as if filled with purpose, "I promised myself I would never drink and *between*…" he trails off as he swirls around the melting ice in his glass, "Friend of mine passed away doing that." A simple explanation, brushed off with a tone that suggested he was long since over it, masking the fact that he wasn't, for a twitch in the corner of his lips fights back the frown that wanted to creep up on him. The water is slugged back as quick as any shot of booze would be, dark eyes penetrating her silent challenge. "If there's one thing I learned," he retorts that silent look with his own level self-assured one, "it's that the client gets what the client asks for. Tomorrow it is. To Xanadu, to a woman in the living cavern named Ocelara. It will be done and with the best of care."

Thea simply shrugs after the comment about *Betweening* after drinking. "Wise decision," she murmurs wryly, pointing out right after, "Too many riders take the chance, sadly. It's partly why I said you didn't have to deliver them until tomorrow." Her eyes drop fleetingly to that half-finished glass he's pushed away. "You had some before I came in, if I guess correctly. Feel free to finish it if you wish." Not that she really cares one way or the other; there's certainly no censure in her tone. "In any case, tomorrow is better for both myself and Ocelara," she explains while noting that near-frown, yet keeping silent regarding it. Her plate of food with her drink arrives then and she thanks the server, sliding her marks across the counter for him. Giving her food the attention it deserves, she lifts the kabob and bites neatly and unselfconsciously. Eyes widen in appreciation and when her mouth is empty, she says, "Faranth, this has a flavor that won't quit."

A'dmar hesitates at her words, eyes flashing back to the drink that he paid for, fingers twitching as his dark gaze took in the position of the barkeep. The decision is made to keep the half had drink when the bartender comes to collect it, stopped by the possessive snatch of a hand and a half-wry grin of the bronzer. After an exchange of looks, some apologetic some understanding, the man has his drink neatly tucked against his arm yet again. "I'd be fine, I don't drink too much because of it…" The glass stirred and a refreshing sip taken. In the interm, the most that he does is swish that liquid around, take a drink, glance awkwardly to one side, check on the packages, bob a leg out, and finally consider the dish of food that the woman ordered. "Mm, they do have good food here," is about as much commentary that he offers in regards to it, drawn back into the security of silence and sipping his drink.

Thea seems quite comfortable with that silence, her posture relaxed, pale glance flicking with interest from her plate to those cooks as they prepare the food for others, her interest in those peculiar ovens undiminished. Bread dough is pushed into a rounded one with a long paddle, while from the grill gouts of flame spout up, here a flash of steel as something is expertly sliced, there the rattle as a drink is shaken and poured. "I think it's an illusion that alcohol can assuage pain, myself," she finally says frankly but quietly. An idle observation, really, before she asks, "So tell me, how a sunrunner found his way to Telgar?" Her glass-green gaze is back to him, honestly wondering it seems and genuinely interested should he care to tell her.

While Thea might be interested in the way that the cooks go about their business, it doesn't seem to phase A'dmar in the least. He resorts to his people watching, with the clever use of the mirror behind the bar, from time to time shifting an arm to draw the glass to his lips, but otherwise the silence is palpable. Not a social guy, obviously. Where some would be quite curious about the woman he is sitting with, he has not even fathomed a question, apathetic to the world around him. As Thea is the first to shatter that lull of silence between them, A'dmar blinks as if seeing her for the first time, so lost in his own thoughts that it appeared he forgot she had been there. "The pain is amplified by the drink," likely a reason he hasn't resorted to such himself, beyond the few he endulges in from time to time. He rolls a tongue against the inside of his cheek at her last question, slightly movements turning him to face her. A calculated look strains in his eyes, indecision, finally, a shrug with a low tone, "It's a long story."

"Would that others could be so perceptive with theirs," she says with a briefly sad line to her mouth before she twitches a brief, bittersweet smile and turns her head to those flaring fires for a time. It is possible that it hasn't escaped Thea's notice that the man is reticent but she seems neither bothered by it nor attempting to prompt a change in him. She is there, allowing the silence to stretch naturally, speaking only when the thought occurs to her, "It is a long way from Igen to Telgar, and I'd imagine the story to get from one to the other would be a long one. However, I've time enough to spare for the telling." Her kebab is still half-eaten, another on her plate and she's taking her time with it, apparently. The expression in his eyes draws a matter-of-fact but gentle-voiced, "Though, some might prefer not to tell theirs, so please. Don't if you'd rather not. Tell me it's none of my business, I won't be offended." Her smile is radiant, sweetly sincere but soon to fade as she visibly retreats as she returns her attention to her dinner. Not chagrinned by any means, just giving the man his space.

Index finger is stroking down a side burn in his dormancy, unconcerned with the ebbing minutes of silence that would usually make a normal person uncomfortable. The quiet crackle of his radio at his hip does cause him to sluggishly respond, turning the frequency to listen for a moment to the code-talk over the airwaves. When the ordeal does not include him, he turns the volume down and returns to his idleness over the glass of tuber vodka and sparkling wine. Dark brown eyes stretch back to her own glass-green gaze, holding for a time as he listens to her explain that she had time and had still been interested. His jaw rolls to the side, that finger moves to scratch the stubble against his chin, before the whole hand streaks back to comb fingers back through fluffy black hair. "Well…" he starts, finger edging into his glass to swirl around some of the ice so that the minty leaves can soak in with the rest of the flavors in the glass. "I was a sunrunner with my tribe. It means we scout locations for our tribe to set up for a time, often spending days at a time doing this…" he squints, then dismisses it as unimportant, "If it wasn't renegades after us and other homeless folk desperate to leech off of someone, it was dragonriders. The latter caught up with us. They figured us for renegades and wanted to take us in, we figured they wanted to 'take' us. My people," he pauses, "aren't that knowledgeable about dragonriders. So. Big fight happened. The sunrunners are supposed to protect the clan, at all costs. We were the first point of contant and we guide our tribe to safety if there is something wrong with the path we chose." He seems to struggle with retelling it, as if it didn't sound right in the second tongue he speaks, "Most of our tribe was escaping during the confrontation between us and the dragonriders. I guess, we all would have, save for the fact that a gypsy family had shadowed us for two sevendays prior and had become useful allies." He lets that settle for a time, orders a refill and continues with a shrug, "There was a girl I liked back then. I was only a kid. She was 'taken' by the dragonriders and I intended to free her. Turns out for all my training, they were able to drop me to my knees with a swing of a club, or something. I don't right remember what it was. Fist, dragon tail, club… something hit me in the back of the head and when I woke up, I was in Igen." He seemed confused as to why he was opening up, that said expression on his face, second-guessing himself.

The hiss and sputter of juices sizzling over those flames, the clink and clatter of cutlery on on china buffered by a low murmurs of blended voices punctured by the occasional raucous comment by one of the cooks fills the silence easily, perhaps almost in a soothing way. It isn't until the voice begins beside her that Thea wipes her mouth and turns back. She's caught up in the story from the first words that begin the tale; her eyes take on a hazy expression, imagining the desert likely. Her lips part, almost protesting when he dismisses the way of the sunrunner as something not to elaborate on, but she checks herself with a keen glance at his expression. She listens impartially to his recital of dragonriders, neither condemnation for their actions nor overt sympathy for his plight, maintaining a calm presence. He pauses and so she murmurs, eyes on his in a silent plea to continue, "That must have been disconcerting."

"It was. I had never been in a Weyr before that. We were lucky to have been kept from the 'Takers' until that point. I was… hrm, well this was about twenty or so Turns ago… a kid. Teenager, hot on emotions and at that point, afraid of what they'd do to us," there is a wry look on his face, then a saddness, a regret for the lost youth. Sighing between a slurp of his drink, the cooking smells savored but he still has not ordered anything to eat. He peers at her, to see if she's still interested, carrying on in his near mundane tone of voice, "We were taught that they were vile. When the riders and harpers came to question us, none of us would talk. To talk was to betray the clan and to exile yourself forever." There is a sardonic smirk on his face for that one, murmuring further, "Then they brought in that gypsy girl I was infatuated with… put her and I in the same room. They knew why I had tried so hard to rescue her. Well, she was quick to cry that I was the renegade leader.. or the leader's son… something like that… the one behind the 'kidnapping' of her family… I can't remember, because got so angry at her lies, to save herself, after all I did! I lunged at her …and was incapacitated yet again." He gives a half grimace, "I recall I just wanted to give her a good shake and yell at her to tell the truth. Seems they took her truth for reality for a while… Put me to question for days.. sevendays. Eventually I couldn't take it and gave them everything they wanted to know about my people and myself. Told them everything. I remember crying for hours…" A little look to Thea, a quiet insecure smile, heartache behind his words however, "My people were freed because of my honesty about them. Yet, my people knew it was I who told the 'takers' of our secrets. They would not even look at me. I was dead to them." A beat, "So R'gui, a bluerider, took me in. Eventually took me to Telgar when he transferred there. A few Turns later and Yarovith found me. That, is how I got to Telgar." Long story right? Long, but he left out a lot of detail and would never make a harper happy with such a version.

Thea is totally caught up in the tale, having turned fully towards him, her dinner forgotten, an elbow resting on the counter while her head is propped in her hand, finger unconsciously snaking up under her hair, dislodging tendrils from her uptwist then unconsciously playing with them as they fall softly about her face. Dark brows knit together at the words 'taught they were vile' and she hazards out a question, "But your people weren't renegades? Why this teaching?" Outraged, fire flares in the ice-green of her eyes as she tacks onto the heels of that question another, "Did no one give you a private audience with the harpers so you could freely state your case without impunity?" She's intent on his next few points, nodding acceptance of their ways, even if not fully understanding them, wincing at the continuation. silent after he finishes for a long moment while a compassionate expression says more than words could ever for his loss. "Betrayal of a loved one-" her voice chokes and it seems her response is borne of personal experience, yet she says nothing of that, merely shaking her head. Instead, when he is finished, she asks, "And you? After the impression? Did it change the way you see dragonriders, if only a little?"

A'dmar shakes his head, "No miss, my people are not renegades," he takes a moment for her to ask the question before he can form a reasonable answer, coming up with a gestured hand while he murmurs, "But you see, my people viewed dragonriders as those who 'took' our people away from their culture and tribe. It was typical that once one of our tribe would 'speak' to a dragonrider, they never came back. I learned only -later- that the reason was that most of my cousins and relatives who were 'taken' ended up mastering Crafts or themselves impressed to dragons." Here he shrugs, "We know, we are taught, from birth, that if we leave the tribe there is no coming back. A lot of us stay just for that fear alone that we do not want to be without the family we grew into. Those of us that are 'exiled' from the tribe, long to return and show them the ways of the world. Yet, my people are fiercely protective of our ways and will do anything to keep them from 'corruption'…"
He cants his head to the side, curling up a fist and leaning his chin up underneath of it, regarding the curiosity of the woman beside him. "No, our people would not accept any audiance with people outside of the tribe. The only business we ever did with 'outsiders' happened to be when we traded with them, but even then, it wouldn't be done at Hold, Hall, or Weyr. Business was conducted with other trader caravans, mostly. The rest we worked ourselves. We had a valley we went to every Turn to collect berries and hunt, a flat grass land where we harvested tougher vegetable items, rivers to fish." He shrugs as if it were easy enough to make sense of, "They are very good at avoiding dragonriders. There is not just our tribe, there are little pockets of tribes all over the place. People who have decided never to settle on one piece of land."
"Yes, it was the first betrayal and would not be the last," he says with a flat voice, a man who has accepted the facts of life and had given up on finding a 'happiness' people spoke of. For a time he reflects in silence, eyes squinting in the corners, lip tweaking as thoughts run rampant. Until her last. At that, he pops up an eyebrow at her. "It was not impression that changed my view of the Weyrs. It was R'gui. He taught me everything. He insisted I go seek harper training, which is why I can speak as clearly as you…" he shrugs, "R'gui made me see that dragonriders were nothing of what we made them out to be, that our people were secluding themselves from the growth of the world, walking through with blinders on."

The indignation in Thea's eyes fades with the explanation, bemusement growing to replace it as A'dmar explains. Save for a little "ohhh" at the word 'took' her expression, instead of becoming enlightened at the elaboration of his culture, grows disquieted. She leans back against the counter, placing an elbow behind her for balance, reserving any sort of judgement for his people. Her only comment to the seclusiveness of his tribe is, "It sounds… repressive." And from the way it's said, she is no stranger to this. She merely hmms low in her throat at the tone he uses to comment upon betrayal, lashes veiling her expression of the empathy there. She resists the inane platitudes others might gushingly make at this point, that he'll find someone who won't let him down; she makes no attempt at false comfort. Instead she listens as he speaks of his friend, nodding quietly. "I would hope you would meet at least a few people in the Weyrs with integrity enough to change the viewpoints your culture gave you, however," and here she holds one index finger aloft, "there are others who, sadly, bring dishonor to what was once an honorable profession that might reinforce it. I was referring to the bond you have with-" her eyes flick down to the card, "Yarovith. This is something your people are missing." She speaks this with the complete conviction a holder or crafter could not.

"After having experienced life with my people when younger and life as it really is, yes, I'd say it was repressive in certain ways. Though it was not an -unhappy- existence. Some things I would've been better off never knowing," he doesn't expand on what those 'things' were, returning to his drink to finish up the round. The man has not missed her cues the entire time, despite the fact that he has opened up and blathered on for the better part of their time together, he has noted a few things here, such as when his own eyelids flutter down at her low 'hmm' and lack of false comfort. "It has been … sixteen… no… eighteen turns since I first came to the Weyrs. I believe my viewpoints were long ago rearranged and enlightened." He does nod a little in regards to the bond with Yarovith, retorting with a tap of his fingers, "In my experience miss, not everyone is fortunate enough to-wait…" he blinks for a time, taking a longer moment to consider her, "You. Only a person who has impressed a dragon would say such things." An abrupt suspicion returns, his body language filling with tension. A head tilt, a cringe of his lips, "Well? I believe it is your turn to tell me about you and your Cold… Hold…" (because he couldn't remember the name of where she grew up).

Thea seems to accept this claim of A'dmar's, that life was good with his people, for she merely nods understandingly although her eyes look beyond him to focus on the far distance of the past. A hint of a smile curves her mouth until he mentions things better not having known and then it abruptly vanishes, her eyes, darken slightly as she returns to the here and now. "Well, that's something everyone can say, quite truthfully; life is like that." She reaches for her juice, pausing with a small blink when she hears that 'you', glass held midway to her lips. His suspicious tension sparks a bit of devilment in her, only revealed by the sudden dance in her eyes as she lifts the drink and sips slowly while maintaining eye contact. Lowering her glass, she shrugs, her expression unreadable, but an impish smile lurks about her mouth as she lifts her napkin to blot it. "Or someone who knows and believes the Teaching Ballads. See, /I/ had Harper lessons growing up." She doesn't speak further on dragonriders. Instead, her buoyancy a trifle diminished, "Cold Stone Hold is hardly mine. My father is Holder there; I am merely his daughter." But as if he'd asked a geographical question, she recites, "The hold is one of the larger of the holds within High Reaches Hold lands, far up in the mountains. Camelids are the primary stock, their hair used in weaving and trade. It is indeed a… cold hold." And then she laughs, a rich, warm sound, not aimed at him by any means, there's something she's left unsaid by the shake of her head.

"That is true," a reticent tone used, the man shifting in his seat with his boot tip coming to rest against the bar, the other swung back to hit the bottom rail of the stool itself. Impassive gestures are made in the direction of the bartender. Some time later as he twirls the empty glass does the barkeep come and offer a refill. A'dmar declines with a wash of his hand waved through the air, asking lightly for the 'tab' as his attention draws toward Thea once further. While tension in his body was a knee-jerk reaction to her concealment of what she does, it does uncoil as she doesn't confirm it either. At least there is a reluctant if not totally sold nod and 'oh' when she speaks of being harper trained. Afterward, there is body language spoke of a man who was finishing up his business, lingering only for the company there at his side. It was almost a look of impatience imparted on her, twisting her direction on the chair. Like she listened to him, he does find himself doing the same for her. Her laughter, the rich warm sounding chimes, create confusion on his face. His head tilts forward, settling back down as if he has decided to stay, a moment longer at any rate, long enough to inquire, "I'm sorry miss, did I miss something which was humorous to you?"

With a grin that's a tinge scandalous but mostly apologetic, "Pardon me, but yes. You did." Thea is rising languidly as he re-seats himself, "I was just remembering the coarse joke oft made about the freezing temperatures of our hold and the wonder there were heirs sired at Cold Stone hold. But it wouldn't do for a lady to tell it." Her fingers flick the thing aside, unimportant, but her eyes still dance impishly as she says, "Ocelara will have your payment when you arrive at Xanadu. She's headwoman, just ask and someone will surely find her for you." Sincerely then she adds, "A'dmar. It was nice meeting you. Thank you for telling me about your people. I'd like to hear more about them. When I shop again, I will more than likely have too much to carry." She glances at the card in her hand, back to him, "I will contact you, if that's alright." She inclines her head slightly, excusing herself and leaves her packages with him. Hasn't even asked his delivery fees but her step is graceful as she heads on out to slip into the crowds in the square, perhaps for more shopping, perhaps to one of the Inns… Whichever the case, there is no dragon lifting off from Ierne where the others lounge for any significant amount of time.

A'dmar stares with more confusion settling into his dark gaze, remaining rooted in his seat as she does otherwise. The whole 'joke' obviously flies right over his head, because his eyes are blinking without a clue clicking in. He just looks dumbfounded, snapping back into it when she makes it known where he can find his payment for the service. Her packages, they get an abrupt glance, double checking how many there should be. All still accounted for. Then he's up, off the chair, a respectful thing to do when he realizes she's going to depart. "Nice meeting you," he murmurs, watching as she does take his card with a certain gleam in his eye for it, dark eyes reverting back toward her face, "Yes. Yes. Please do." When she's excused herself, there is a disgruntled frown on his face, then a half flicker of a smirk, and a soft shake of his head. Intrigued? Yes. Yes he was.

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