Catching Up.

Xanadu Weyr - Luraoth's Menagerie

Before being cleared to make space for the training field, this expanse of land had been a farm. Fence posts still mark out small pastures or tracts of cropland that have long been left to go fallow and become little more than grassy patches of wildflowers. The path from the coastal road weaves between scattered fruit trees left over from an orchard, offering some measure of shade along the walk.

A huge barn with large doors that swing easily are moved by a mechanism with the sound of clinking chains and the chugging of a generator. Within, what must have once been storage space and the home for farm animals has been transformed into a place fit for a dragon. A huge stone makes up the center of the largest chamber, with heating or cooling with the flick of a tail. There are other stones set about in three other dragon-sized nooks, clearly set there for the comfort of guests or patients.

A set of metal stairs as well as a freight elevator around the side of the building allow easy access to a loft area that has largely been left untouched from the time this place was a farm. There's plenty of room for storage, but also room for any number of animals that may come to live here. One corner has been clearly dedicated as 'tunnelcat territory' with a bunch of little platforms, ramps, tunnels, and toys.

Ever since the ice storm, Soriana has been busy. Actually, she was busy even before then, but she's been busier (if such a thing seems possible) since. Her weyr sees her occasionally. The walk's been cleared and sanded. She… presumably sleeps. This morning is clear and cold, and Soriana is not asleep. She's out in the barn, with a bottle of oil and a cloth to work it into Luraoth's hide as the gold reclines on her side on one of the heated stones. Overhead, a brown and gold firelizard chase each other between the rafters. Soriana's ignoring them, but Luraoth is watching.

Kera manages to get a few candlemarks to herself and is tired of being cooped up inside thanks to the cold icey weather. At least the sun's out today, interupting the otherwise overcast and dreary sevenday with a brief break in the weather. Winter can't last forever, Spring /has/ to come soon, right? With her oversized satchel draped around her neck, Kera follows Minimur's aerial directions til the brown settles on her shoulder and chitters happily. She gives his neck a gentle scratch while stepping into the Soriana's yard area and peering around. The barn draws her attention and she grins as she approaches and waves. "G'day Soriana, Luraoth." The small brown on her shoulders chirls his own greetings to those occupying the barn.

Eventually. Sooner or later. Maybe! Spring's bound to happen. Soriana's rubbing in around Luraoth's shoulder with the cloth, working the oil deep into the hide, but she looks up at the sound of a voice, reaching up to brush her hair back from her face. "Oh. Hey!" she calls back, with a smile that goes on her mouth and a thinky look in her eyes as she searches to see if there's something she was supposed to do that she's gone and forgotten about. Maybe, maybe… she doesn't even know anymore. Luraoth croons a quiet greeting, and from the rafters, the bright golden firelizard swoops down with a trill and flips on her wing to fly back up again.

Kera pauses her steps just outside the barn entrance, remaining in that sweetspot the sun has warmed up. But after a few long seconds of squinting in the contrasting dimness inside the barn, she rubs her eyes and steps further in, out of the sunny spot. Smiling at the cordial greeting that comes from everyone, both legged and winged, Kera gives a polite dip of her head. Minimur chitters and trills before flapping upwards to join in the firelizardy antics among the rafters. Shaking her head in amusement with the lizards, she peers back to her friend "You are a hard woman to track down, ya know that?"

The golden firelizard's a restless one - Haruhi's being a showoff, alternately demanding and crooning at the browns. Soriana ignores her utterly. The thoughtful look flees from her eyes, replaced by just the smiling face of it as she shrugs and dips her rag in the oil again, turning back to Luraoth and working on another spot. "I guess I am." Though Kera's certainly found her, at the moment. "There's always a lot to do." She glances back to Kera, and smiles as she gives a tilt of her head to the dragon. Yet another of her things to do! Oiling's important.

Kera nods agreeably to both comments as her gaze drifts around towards lots of nooks tucked away around the barn. Mainly, her eyes follow the lizards path as they dart here or there among the upper obstacles, then return to Soriana. "That's true enough, always something coming up that needs to be done." Pulling her satchel around, her fingers taps out a random pattern on the strap while eyeing the rider's oily hands with a little thoughtful frown. A few seconds go by and she shrugs it off with a smile and reaches into the satchel anyway. "I brought ya something." A floral print wrapped bundle is tugged from the satchel, the little green ribbon snagging on something a seconds before it releases and comes out of the satchel completely. "You can open it later since your hands are all oily." A glance around the imediate area "Where do ya want me to set it?"

If Soriana weren't trying to get the oiling done, she'd probably be in the office. But everyone knows the importance of dragon-oiling! So when Luraoth mentions an itch… it happens. Soriana keeps rubbing in the oil, and nods. "Yeah. Always something or other," she says, then glances back over at the mention of the something, looking between the bundle and Kera. "…did something happen?" she asks, tone curious. Because, well, gifts are… not exactly something she randomly expects! Is this because of Kera's latest… huh. She's not sure what Kera's latest is, and she frowns slightly before shrugging and giving a general wave of her hands. "Wherever it'll work?" she says. "I dunno. So what's up?"

Kera gives a little shake of her head while peering around for a likely place to keep the present oil free. "Nothing's up. I just been tryin to catch run into ya to give ya this. Wasn't having much luck with that plan, so I thought I'ld try to look here again." Setting it on top of a couple of stacked crates, the apprentice lets her satchel drop back to her side and swings it behind her a little. "Of coarse, the weather hasn't been cooperating at all." But to be fair, it hasn't been cooperating for anyone else either. So why should the apprentice get any special treatment from the weather. "All the ice overs have been keeping the infirmary rather busy lately."

"Well," Soriana says, looking back down to Luraoth as the gold rolls up a bit to expose another part of her hide for oiling. "I meant more… in general. What've you been up to? I haven't really seen you in a while, and I know I've been busy, but…" She nods for the ice. "Have you just been doing studying, then? Spending your time watching an infirmary full of impatient patients?" She half-smiles for that.

Kera watches Soriana as she swipes the rag across Luraoth's hide and steps a few paces closer, though not close enough to be in either's way. Canting her head, she gives the question some thought before nodding. "Pretty much. When I get cross-eyed from studying, I work on a couple little things." Her fingers flick towards the present as an example. "Helps me keep my fingers flexible." A tiny shrug lifts her shoulders "With the weather being as it's been lately, not much else to do but study and duty shifts."

"Hmm," Soriana says. "You should get out more." All studying and no play makes Kera… Sori hehs, and turns to point the rag at the healer apprentice as she half-grins. "Lies. There's snow to run around in, or if you get tired of that, there's all the caverns to explore. You could teach your firelizard to play tricks, if you wanted. Or learn to bake your own baklava." Now it's a full grin, but only briefly, because there's a frown to replace it. "Have there been a lot of injuries?"

Kera blinks at the rag pointed her way and chuckles. "One could say the same to you too Soriana, about getting out more. I mean it took me a month to catch you so I could give ya the present I made." Longer really, but what's a sevenday or two. She grins a bit "And I know i'm not the only one that had trouble tracking you down lately. I ran into Ka'el a couple sevendays ago. Drinking and arguing with himself at the tavern." He was actually arguing with his dragon, but he didn't fit in the tavern. At the mention of her cooking, she snickers "You're assuming I can do much more than boil water." Smirking at herself a nod dips her head "A couple serious injuries, but mainly it's been spained ankles, bruised backsides and ribs. One or two serious bumps on the head. But there haven't been any serious illness this turn."

"I get out," Soriana says with a smile. "I've been to High Reaches, Igen, and Hannista this past month." She gives her head a shake. "Besides, you know where my office is." Just down the admin hallway! The mention of Ka'el makes her lift an eyebrow, but she turns away to rub oil into another spot of Luraoth's hide as the smile gets… complicated. It's still a smile, it's just… well… a thinky one. "Kanekith's like that," she simply says. Argumentative. Ka'el? Nope. She's not talking about him. As for Kera's (lack of) skill with cooking - "You could learn. The cooks'll give lessons sometimes, if you go looking. Trying for days off later, I suppose." A half-smile (it's a joke), and then she nods to the list of injuries as the smile fades again.

Kera thinks a few seconds and finally gives a conceding nod "I'll give it some thought and see how the cooks feel about me getting in their way." She chuckles to her friend as Soriana lists all the place's she's been. "Oh, all nice places to be, I'm sure. But other than you're office,.." she twirls her fingers ni a circle, gesturing around. "..ya haven't been here much." Flashing an amused wink to the queenrider, Kera gives her head a slight shake and easy going shrug "Yea, I know generally where your office is, but if ya are there, I'm not gonna interupt your work."

"Things have been busy," Soriana says of her presence here (but not in her office), and shrugs a little. "Besides, I do get out. I guess I just haven't run into you then…" A slight smile. "Probably because you were holed up in the infirmary." Her tone's teasing for that part of it, and then she shrugs again at the talk of her office and interruptions "Suppose you've found me now." A smile, and then she applies oil to just one more spot before pausing to look at Luraoth. All done? The question's a silent one. So's the dragon's answer.

Kera nods agreeably with a chuckle "Yea, that busy condition gets contagious sometimes. We're just lucky to get brief reprieves from it sometimes." Reaching up, she drags her fingers though hair, scratching her scalp a few seconds, still smiling. "I guess ya are right as well. I have sorta been keeping to the infirmary and complex since the weather has been cold. But here I am finally catchng ya." Stepping back and giving the pair plenty of room as Soriana and Luraoth seem to be having a few quiet words. While they do, Kera peers towards the rafters, grinning when she spots Minimur perched above with his winged friends.

Contagious busy? "Better get on that, healer," Soriana teases, then consults with Luraoth for a bit before nodding. Dragon: oiled! So she steps back from the gold, who stretches out to relax, and reaches for a non-oily cloth to wipe her hands clean. "So you are," she says. Minimur might be finding the gold firelizard is being difficult, but the other brown's friendly, at least.
Kera seems to spend a few seconds working something out mentally while watching the mingling firelizards before smirking "Ya know, I would, but I've already so much to do that I'm not sure I can fit in another project right now. So the contagious issue will just have to trouble us a while longer til I can get around to it." She flashes an amused wink back to Soriana before growing a little serious "I am glad that you've not taken an injury from the ice. It took the Steward out of action for a couple of days." Thankfully, he's on the mend if not mostly healed by now.

Soriana's still ignoring those firelizards. Quite deliberately so - but Toral's being chirpy to Minimur. Also to Haruhi, when she doesn't decide to ignore him and flutter on about something else instead. Sori wipes oil off her hands, and nods. "That's the problem with this studying. No time for pressing concerns!" Like keeping busy from being contagious, which is tooootally a possible thing that Kera could actually do if she put her mind to it. Yep. Soriana looks toward the floral bundle on the crates, then glances back to Kera for the serious part. "I've heard." What, she doesn't say, but her office is back in the admin hallway. Just like the Steward's.

Kera nods and gives a shrugging grin. "Ah, well, yea, guess ya would know bout that already." Leaning against the nearest beam, Soriana is observed, "And what pressing concerns should I be keeping my eyes out for?" Being on the scene when the cooks put the bubblies out, still warm from the ovens? Avoiding being pelted by sleet an hail? Kera's got these things covered for the most part. Oh! Soriana's cleaning her hands, which makes her take up the present and hold it towards her friend "And for the record, I do find a little time for things that don't concern my books or the infirmary." As the queenrider will soon find out.

Soriana frowns a little, on the matter of the Steward, but she doesn't add anything about it, just shaking her head and moving on to other things. Other pressing concerns. "I think it's more just keeping your eyes out to find out what they are. Don't know what's going to be happening until you get there and see it, do you?" She smiles, and shrugs, then reaches out to accept that gift. "Well, good!" she tells Kera. "You should. It's good to have a hobby." And then she opens up the package by unfastening the ribbon, letting the fabric fall aside. "Huh. I didn't know you did embroidery," she says, looking at the cloth, then back up to Kera, then back to the cloth. "It's nice. Thank you."

Kera 's gaze drifts towards the lizards, watching them a few seconds while Minimur chitters happily and mingles Toral, and Haruhi as much as the gold will allow. Even the small brown knows not to annoy a queen. Considering Soriana's words while her friend opens the gift, Kera's attention is once more drawn towards her friend. "But finally getting there and seeing, whatever it is ya are wanting to see or do, can end up rather disappointing." She doesn't continue the line of thought, switching to another quickly. "Thanks, I'm glad ya like it." Gesturing towards the work "It helps me work on keeping my stitch work neat."

Soriana glances to Kera with a slight arch of her brows for that comment. It doesn't entirely make sense. Not… a lack of sense, exactly, but it seems like there's something more that's not being said. Oh well - there's also an embroidered cloth to be looked at, and Soriana smiles for that… then hehs. "My dragon-stitching never seemed to help me, when I had mending duty. Then again, the aunties in the laundry are picky." She grins.

Kera doesn't miss the odd look Soriana gives her but smiles it off with a little chuckle "Hmm, straps /are/ a bit different." She winces and pretends to be trying to stab something hard with a tiny needle "That would /kill/ my fingers after a little while." It's an exaggeration of coarse. "With the needlework, it helps with my stitches for when I have to sew up deep cuts or incisions." Looking around the barn, she whistle and that brings Minimur winging down towards her shoulder. Gesturing towards the threaded picture, she smiles "Glad ya like it. You'll probably get some more, over time." A soft chuckle slips out "Expecially in the colder months." With a little sigh, she pushes off the beam "I should be getting back to the dorms. Make sure my cots ready for insoection and all that."

Soriana shakes her head to Kera. "I don't mean straps," she says. She's got a polite smile, now. "I mean stitching up injuries on a dragon." With needle and thread and gashed hide. Soriana watches Kera for a moment, quiet and with her thoughts seeming to wander, then nods and glances back down to the picture. "Well, thanks… but go on and brighten up your own place first. Wouldn't want you to just be staring down at the snow…" And then, after Kera's comment, she adds, "…or a dull cot!"

Kera ahs softly at the clarification. "OH, I thought ya meant for making your dragon's straps." Nodding as she recalls a trick she learned at the Hall. "Maybe trying slicing an orange fruit, then sewing it. That's one of the ways we learn at the Hall." Yea, but those poor little fruits never stood a chance! Brighten up her place? She'ld have to have a place to do that. And she barely has a cot in the dorms. Not much to decorate, even if she was stupid enough to try adding a bit of color to the dorms again. Any time soom at least. With a little smirk "Anyway, you two have a nice evening. I'll try to catch up with ya again soon." She wiggles her fingers towards Soriana before starting back. "Come on Mini, if we hurry, we can get some grilled fish before it's all gone."

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