I Just Wanted You to Know...

The office has been minus one junior for three days. Her desk empty. No comment from the other juniors as to where she is or when she will be back. She's at the Weyr, for Seryth is here, other than that it is anyone's guess as to where she is. Somehow some one has taken that slip of paper with the poem on it from her desk and placed a simple sheet in neat handwriting on the Weyrsecond's desk:

All ships at anchor tethered are
In harbors moored they safely lie
No storms to brave, not led by star
Safe, but caged. They cannot fly.

~ There is no signature, but the writing is in Thea’s hand

Xanadu Weyr - Thea's Weyr

This clearing is sheltered by a thick canopy of trees, which seems supported at its centre by an immense, wild-growing fellis tree. Hanging from one of its high branches is a swing, made up of two ropes and a seat of softwood and leather. The grass is tall here and interrupted in places by clusters of white and blue alyssum. Alyssum covers the indentation of the wallow, remaining hardy despite being continually crushed. The constant sound of herdbeast in their pens can be heard close-by, though its source is invisible through the foliage.

The cottage itself is made of white softwood, like birch, though creeping vines cover all four of its walls from the outside and even encircle the brown-shuttered windows and matching door. The interior floor and walls are raw wood that has been sanded and lacquered to make them smooth and, for the most part, the inside is quite spacious. The bedroom area is plain, an ornately carved wardrobe providing the only real decoration, and at the rear of the cottage a brown lattice has been built into the doorway to a makeshift kitchen, where a breakfast nook has been carved into the wall, along with short counters. On one counter, a circle has been cut out and fixed with a clay-fired bowl with a nearby matching pitcher.

Midday, a time when the offices are often empty and a knock comes to Thea's door. Nothing rushed and urgent from the sound, just a simple rap of notification over the sound of rain outdoors. That rain, dark and heavy, might leave one to wonder, however, why anyone might be out on such an errand.

The door opens and it's a wary Thea that opens it to find the Weyrsecond on her doorstep. He's standing in the rain but does she hasten him in out of the weather? No, she just stands stoically with nothing registering on her face, no surprise, no anger… and no joy. Nothing. "What do you want?" There is not a trace of emotion in her tone as she asks the question.

Many things there are that could be said. Many that would be better than others. And yet it’s likely that his choice is far from the best. There's instead a long bout of silence from D'had when the door is opened. He seems sated enough to stand in the rain, in no rush to push his way in out of it. Dark eyes won't meet her's and rather he looks down, "… When did you change your mind?"

A conversation? This is Thea's guess when the question is asked. For a long moment she stands there, the rain sliding from the roof pooling on her hardwood floor unheeded. Finally, she answers quietly, "Somewhere between the revelation you'd loved once and a wild dragon ride in the sky." He may be looking down, but she is not. Bare feet and legs splashed by bouncing drops, the dampening hem of her skirt are ignored as she waits for… nothing.

"After whathisface," Yes, poor Enkavir is doomed to remain nameless it seems. "Seein' you like that…" D'had starts, shaking his head. "Close the door," he notes, reaching only to do just that if she hasn't already begun. It’s only after that quiet thud of the door being closed, and another of his forehead bumping the wall just beside it. "I did you worse didn't I," he continues then, hoping she's still listening. "I didn't want you to get hurt and I managed to twist the knife instead of pull it out." Beat. "I'll be leaving tonight. I know I'm probably the last person you wanted to see right now, but I just wanted you to know … I love you Thea." The 'L word' is choked on, but the name follows without pause.

Thea's listening somberly, nothing moves but the rise and fall of her chest as she breathes. At the mention of Enkavir - and yes she knows who he means - her head jerks up slightly. He's reaching for the doorknob and so she steps back, only to move to that closed door and rest her head and a hand against it. He is gone. From under her closed lids tears come, but then the words, muffled through the wood and blended with the beat of the rain reach her. She's past surprise, shock, anger and hope. But her hand seems to have a will of its own, reaching to jerk that door back open. "What was that?" Not daring to believe, not trusting her own ears. There's a storm of conflicting emotions in the sea green of her eyes.

D'had is still standing there in the rain, head against the wall. That door opening again is the last thing he'd expected. He's imagining that. Right? "Just wanted you to know…" he repeats quietly. The comment almost as if he hasn't realized that she's standing there and the door is open again.

Thea isn't breathing. And if he doesn't want her ker-splatting on the stone steps to her cottage, he'd better answer her before she's passing out from a lack of oxygen. "To know what?" And no, she's still not sure she really heard him correctly. Maybe she is asleep and this is a dream? She doesn't move at all. Just waits.

D'had's face is void of emotion when he finally lifts his head and dares to look in her direction, though his eyes hold a pained sadness. "I love you," he admits, the words coming perhaps a miniscule touch easier the second time around. The fact that she's still there, it might just be a dream. As the last word trails off, dark eyes drift downward once again as he turns to take his leave.

Thea is stunned speechless for a beat and in that time he is turning away. Heedless of the rain, she is after him, moving past in two smooth steps and turns to confront him. In moments her hair is plastered to her head, a rain-soaked sable cape clinging to her shoulders, skirt and blouse likewise glued to her skin, unnoticed by her as she peers up trying to catch those dark eyes. "And so you're leaving? Why?"

"Let me go babe," D'had replies. He's not going to even try sidestepping the woman. "It'll be easier for both of us. Can go back to Telgar." Certainly not one of the weyrs with an ocean view. "Things'll be better that way." At least as far as he's thought them through.

"Better." With that one word Thea's apathy dissolves. In its place is left cold rage. "You know? I was never one to go with easy." She steps close enough to be eyeball to eyeball with him if only she were tall enough to do that. "I had no choice with Enkavir. But I do with you." Her breathing vies with the beat of her heart in a race neither can win as she pauses to try and calm both and loses. "I don't want you to go."

D'had sighs, letting out a slow ragged breath. "If that's what you really want," he gives in without the fight that some might have. And then, "Its raining," he states the obvious, "You should head in before you catch cold."

Thea remains unmoving at that, her face drains of color. Raining? She glances towards the sky without any interest at all. His seemingly uncaring capitulation has her muttering an oath as she turns on her heel, "You won't have to leave. *Between* take me-!" With that she's lifting her sodden skirts and sprinting across her clearing towards the Annex and the only wings that can take her there.

D'had blinks, looking up at those words. Wait. What?! Almost without missing a beat he's taking off after her. Hopefully he'll catch up before she reaches Seryth, if not things will likely not bode well for him.

Thea runs as fast as one can with bare feet and wet skirts clinging to legs. Rain and tears conspire to blind her as she navigates slippery, uneven ground as she sprints. It's only a clump of grass that does it, her foot snagged and she goes down heavily, knocking her breathless. She's trying to push up, but can't get the air she needs to keep running as her gasps rasp in the silence of the clearing.

D'had winces for her, but that tumble gives the second he needs to be able to catch up with her. "Babe," he starts, scooping her up into his lap as he takes a seat on the ground beside her regardless of the pouring rain. "If you don't want me to go, I won't. But that means you don't either," he says firmly. "Thought that's what you'd want, but clearly I was wrong," he admits, lifting a hand to push wet locks from her face. Is that… writing on his palm?

Thea is still trying for air as his arms wrap around her and she is shifted to his lap. She can't speak, but both hands reach to grip the front of his shirt. When she finally manages to draw a full breath, she grits out quietly, "Just stop it! Stop it! Stop it! You come tell me you love me, say you're leaving then say you won't if I don't want, but you don't seem to really care. I. Cannot. Take. This. Anymore! You are driving me insane!" She's breathing, but the tempo is much too fast.

From the Annex a faint bugle sounds and it is merely a few seconds before a backwinging Seryth lands in the clearing with eyes a-whirl with colors of red and orange. The normally serene gold is growling and baring her teeth, her head snaking right up to the Weyrsecond where he's cradling her rider with a snort of hot air through flared nostrils.

D'had should probably be much more worried about that angry gold staring him down, but being that he still has hold of her rider… Those words from her has him leaning in to kiss her, likely whether she likes it or not. Its short though. An attempt perhaps for quiet, to give him a second to say what should come next, to stop her mid-rant and get a word in. "Tell me what to do."

Thea glares at him for that kiss, but it does manage to give her pause enough to listen to his plea. For several long moments she is silent while her breathing slows. Seryth remains but her eyes calm to yellow, her head there as threateningly as before. Although she stops growling, her teeth remain visible. A silent warning - Do not hurt my rider again! Thea finally manages to answer, "Stop hiding, please?" Her mind searches for more, "And start believing that I love you too?"

That having been said, D'had comes to realizes the proximity of the queen, eyes turning up to light half on her and half on her rider in his lap and he swallows. Yes, now would be a very bad time to make the wrong move. "I'll try," he agrees, chocolate gaze shifting back to focus more fully on woman rather than dragon. "You do?"

Thea has totally forgotten that her hands still grip his shirt - as if she could have held him back from leaving by clinging to it. His question has her nodding, "Yeah, I do." Her eyes contain a mixture of stunned wonder and puzzlement. "You could not see it?" There's the barest shake of her head for that before she's asking with mild indignation, "Just how many men in this Weyr do you think I allow to be kissing on me anyway?"

D'had hmms and nods. Well she does have a point in that. His hand still rests against her cheek and he uses it to wipe away a cluster of raindrops, though they're replaced by more almost instantly. "Only one I'd hope?" he replies, a hint of his usual smile finding its way to touch his lips.

Seryth's eyes have slowly turned from yellow to her normal blue during this time. She whuffs one more snort at the man holding hers, withdraws her head, turns and heads off towards the Annex. Just before she leaves the clearing, her head swivels back over her shoulder, eyeing them. "Oh!" Thea blinks at her hands and releases D'had's shirt. Seryth rumbles her amusement and leaves the clearing. Thea lifts her eyes to the Weyrsecond. "Only one," she confirms. His hand moves and she catches a glimpse of his palm, reaches for it, turning it to see the blurred ink there. Her eyes are back to his with bewilderment, "What's this?"

D'had blinks. Confusion the first thing to cross his face when she questions the smudged ink lines on his palm. The second, which follows quickly after the first, embarrassment. Is that even in the possibilities of emotion for him? "Its nothing," he replies all too quickly as he attempts to pull his hand back and not allow closer inspection.

Thea retains his hand, but her focus is on D'had's face, not his palm. There's a small frown of concern at his embarrassment. "You… don't have to tell me, but I wish you wouldn't feel badly whatever it is," she says quietly. "Although, you should know I can probably guess. It would be nice if could trust me." One arm slides around his waist and she snuggles her head into the hollow of his shoulder so he doesn't have to look at her. "Nevermind. Not important." Yes, that rain continues but she seems oblivious to it.

Oblivious or not, D'had too is at least seemingly content to sit as he is. When she snuggles in, he tilts his head resting his cheek against the top of her head. "Wanted ta get it right," he comments. "When I told ya. .. Wanted to be able to say it without asking 'her'." Her clearly enough meaning Seryth.

Thea is silent for a moment, one hand lifts to brush his cheek with light fingertips. "You got it right." There is nothing but pride for him as she says it. There's a pause then she tells him, "I don't care if you never use my name, as long as… as long as it's me you're telling these things to and," she carefully moves her head from under his cheek to see his face, blinking the rain from her eyes, "Like it when you call me babe." Is that? It is! She's blushing just a bit.

"Good," D'had replies. At least he managed to do that much right. His face on the other hand could do with a shave given the prickle her fingers are liable to meet. "Was important," he comments as to this time in particular. "Didn't think 'babe' would cut it, but I am glad ya like it," he adds with a chuckle.

Thea doesn't mind the rough under her fingers. She's nodding to his words, "Nice to know." She tucks her head back where it was before asking, "Why did you think going away would help?" Her arm tightens around his waist; it's an unconscious reflex as her breathing pauses, "If things are hard sometimes-" She leaves it unfinished, but the trepidation in her voice should be telling. Someone's got abandonment issues.

"After how I'd done you…" D'had starts, curling his arms closer around her waist least she up and disappear on him. "Didn't think ya'd wanna see me again." Beat. "Suppose was mostly selfish though too," he admits a moment later. "Don't know that I could take seein you everyday like that." At least he admits it now though, right? That must be points for him and not against?

There are no points against. Thea's hand drops from the stubble on his cheek to join the other wrapped about him where both tighten, "Well you were wrong about that." She pauses, "I think I understand, and I'm glad you came to see me before disappearing. I think… I think it would have killed me if you hadn’t." She's breathing again, "Tell me you wouldn't just do that? You'd stay try to work through, right?" She needs to hear it.

"Never just leave without you knowin'," D'had replies for all he can assure with words. "Promise you that. Side's you'll always be able to track me down," he adds with a nod towards the Annex and the gold dragon within.

Thea will have to be satisfied with that. She gives a short bark of laughter about tracking him down, reminding him sweetly, "I don't chase, remember?" As for Seryth, "She might come after ya, snag you and *Between your butt right back to Xanadu leaving Siebith to follow." She smirks at that, adding, "Have a feeling the two would plan an abduction all on their own."

D'had chuckles, "Might do that, don't need you givin' 'em any ideas though," he warns with a teasing quality to his tone. "Lets just hope it don't come to that though. Alright?" He draws in a deep breath, letting it out slowly.

Thea nods agreement to that. "I won't." But that queen has a mind of her own. Does she tell him? Not on your life! "Alright. I will." Humbly then, "I was wrong too. And I'm sorry. Sorry for expecting so much from you so soon." She lifts her head seeking his eyes, "Forgive me?"

They all have minds of their own, that is beside the point. "Already done," D'had reassures, giving her a light squeeze. "Never blamed ya for anything anyway, but," and here his typical smirk pushes its way to the fore. "Probably should get out of this rain, and these wet clothes," he finishes with a wink. Leave it to him.

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