Breakfast to Go

Xanadu Weyr - Waterfall Cave

Cleverly hidden behind the illusion of stone, a cave has formed at the base of the waterfall itself, large enough to host several individuals comfortably, or one person and a dragon. The walls are moist and textured, with small rivulets of water draining from the cave floor down into the pond beyond. Moving further back into the cave finds a dry floor and a smooth rear wall. Two sturdy camp chairs lean up against the back wall, along with a generous bedroll, wrapped in water-tight animal skins. A small bundle of firewood rests off of the floor on a makeshift stand, drying.

The roar of the falls is loud here, making conversation difficult from any range other than close, and the sheer volume of water makes it almost impossible to see through to the forest beyond. The only way out appears to be via the water, back the way you came.

Early, early morning, barely dawn finds the occupants of the cave still sleeping. Thea is curled on her side facing away from the dawnlight beginning to penetrate the waterfall, burrowed under a tumble of her dark hair, in effect, shutting out the light.

That faint light has found D'had outside, stirring him to wake despite it being early. A second later it dawns on him why he is where he is and that determined he's finding his way back into the cave he was kicked out of once not so terribly long ago.

The cave is quiet, if warm, and the apprentice healer that so harried D'had the previous day is gone. Tenebrous, on the other hand, is more present than ever, standing fully dressed at the Falls' edge. It almost seems as though he's been expecting the rider. In the low light of dawn, the main source of illumination is, in fact, a ball of fire that the Journeyman holds in one hand, calmly letting it dance around his fingers. It's around the size of an orange and its flame is a mixture of gold and blue.

Thea's slumber is deep, dreamless. She's so relaxed, her ribcage barely moves as she breathes. Finally the restless tossing that so annoyed Phylicia and dislodged the dressing placed on her upper chest almost all night has eased. Other than breathing, only the fingers of one hand, on an outstretched arm move, slight twitches that indicate some sort of dream starting, perhaps.

D'had is startled by the presence of the healer so close to the entrance, a frown crosses his face at the sight but he manages to maintain composure. "How is she?" A seemingly simple question.

"The weyrwoman is … sleeping. Peacefully." With a swift motion, he closes his fist over the flame and it sighs out of existence with a little puff. "Her condition has improved since yesterday, but her recovery is slow, given her bout with malnutrition yesterday, and the …rigors she underwent." The ball makes its way under his coat in complete silence.

Thea stirs, voices perhaps, or maybe the scuff of boot on stone, triggering a dream. Thea utters a soft cry in the back of her throat, the outstretched hand overturns to palm-down, reaching, patting beside her, finding a heap of blankets this time instead of nearly winding up in the coals. Her hand stills, fingers curl 'round the blanket and she murmurs something, then subsides to peace.

D'had nods slowly, "Better though?" he questions. "That's good. Right?" He doesn't ask what might be the next logical question, rather looking beyond the healer towards the sleeping Thea. "Right?"

Tenebrous nods slowly. "Yes, rider. Better." He holds up a hand. "But by no means ready for the rigors of the world. I'm making arrangements to have some of her paperwork brought here so that she can continue her duties with as little stress as possible." He eyes the other man from under his hood. "I trust I can…count on your cooperation to keep her stress levels down, Weyrsecond?"

Thea rolls towards the cave entrance, kicking the coverlet as she moves, one long leg pokes out from the wadded blanket. Chill air, pale light combine with murmured voices to bring her to awareness. She lifts her head, one hand swipes the tumbled mess of dark hair off her face as she blinks towards the figures at the cave's entrance. She yawns softly, then calls a sleepy, "Morning already?" They can answer when they will, her head plops back down onto the bedroll.

D'had nods, "I'll do my best," he agrees with Tenebrous. "and if there's anything else I can do…" He lets the rest of his thought fall off looking back towards Thea at her question. "Mornin' babe."

Tenebrous turns slowly, his face unreadable under that hood. "Good morning, Weyrwoman," he offers calmly. "Let me know when you think you're ready for breakfast and we'll try some solid food." He steps aside slowly, gesturing to Thea's prone form. "Go to her if you wish," he murmurs, and then lowers it for D'had's ears. Steel creeps into his words. "You are in my home, Rider. I expect that there will not be a repeat of yesterday. On either of our parts." Then he ghosts away from the waterfall, towards the coals of the previous night's campfire.

Thea turns her head back towards the entrance, blinks at the light but answers easily enough, "Morning, Donn." A relaxed greeting. She catches his offer to the healer and pipes up "Can ya bring another bedroll up from Stores for the healer? He gave me his." She gives Tenebrous a bit of a cheeky grin, "Morning Journeyman," as he passes her to the fire. "I am hungry today." She pushes up to sit, twitches the coverlet back over her leg, turns to give D'had a curious look. "Ya alright?" Not used to seeing him with the wind out of his sails.

D'had nods, "Right Journeyman," he agrees reluctantly, before crossing the space between him and the weyrwoman to settle beside her. "How you feelin' sugar?" he questions the woman, brushing her hair from her face.

Tenebrous offers Thea a nod, apparently content to keep to himself while the Weyrsecond and the Weyrwoman reacquaint themselves. It takes a few moments for him to coax the fire back into life, and after that's done, he begins preparing various cooking dishes. It's only a few more minutes before the smells of warm flatbread fill the cave along with eggs and a bit of herdbeast meat.

Thea gives D'had an odd stare as her question to him is ignored, "Better," her answer is absently given as he brushes her hair from her cheek, for she is busy peering at him in some consternation, "Did you…" ice-green eyes have the expression in them of 'please tell me you didn't' as they take in his stubble and tired appearance, "…sit outside the cave all night?" She flickers a glance towards the fire where Tenebrous is cooking, "Eggs?" There's a laugh rippling in her tone, "Flop around? Better get another pan to whack her with."

D'had sighs, chuckling quietly at that question. "Good to hear," he replies to her better. "Told ya I wasn't going anywhere," he replies, fingers of one hand tracing behind her ear to rest on her shoulder. In other words, yes, he did.

No sooner than Thea mentions 'Eggs' and 'Flop', there comes a churlish noise from Phylicia's bedroll in the corner. The disgruntled sounds of a firelizard can clearly be heard, and a lump at the bottom of the bag begins stirring. Tenebrous' eyes close slowly. "Yes," he offers quietly. "Though I would not have broadcast that fact … just yet." There's a hiss as something meets a warm pan, and he falls silent, focusing his attention on the food.

"Okay see, now that's gonna stress me out, Donn. And I thought that was something you're not supposed to be doing," Thea says it seriously and even though a small twinkle glitters in her pale eyes, it might just be the light of battle, right? Beware! "It's the middle of Winter! Go home at night? Please?" The firelizard's creeling has the junior snickering. "Can ya send her home to Master Fraille if she eats them? Flop can share the aftereffects with her."

D'had watches her silently, only looking away to turn a glance towards the fire and the healer, his own stomach growling with the smell of food. Looking back he nods, giving Thea's shoulder a light squeeze. "Alright, alright. I'll go home." Beat. "At night."

Tenebrous murmurs, "You will go when asked, Weyrsecond, either by her or by me." He gives the pan a hard shake, flipping the contents into a pleasant-looking omelet. Something that looks suspiciously like a large-scale scalpel is pulled out of his utensil bag and he begins carving it up into three generous sections. Metal plates are set next to the fire, and warm slabs of flatbread are placed on each. Onto them, the bits of omelet are slid. "Large satchel near the far side of the fire, Rider. You'll find three mugs. Fill them with water, if you please."

Thea shakes her head, "Ya can't sit out there in the ice cold all day too?" Not when he has a nice warm office, right? "What's D'son gonna think?" Speaking of the ex-Search and Rescue Rider has jogged her memory, "Did M'nol ever answer to you as to why he didn't have Faraeth bespeak Siebith the other night and alert you, Wingleader?" She turns when Tenebrous speaks, eyes dipping to that…utensil. "Besides e-" a quick glance at that bag where Flop has curled has her changing it to "-omelets, what is that thing normally used to cut?" And does she really want to know?

D'had blinks and then shakes his head, "Haven't talked ta him yet." In otherwords, he forgot all about having that discussion. "Yeah, whatever," he replies off-handedly to Tenebrous. He'll go when he's asked… A brow raises for that last question of Thea's.

Tenebrous finishes with the cooking a few moments later, putting camp forks on each plate. Two are carried over to D'had and Thea and he places them on the ground next to her bedroll. The third is left near the fire to keep warm while he moves over to the satchel on the far side of the fire. Three mugs are belatedly removed from its depths and filled with water from a bladder. One is liberally dosed with more banana powder before he brings both mugs over to the plates as well. Then he's off to the fire again, and his own bit of food. Flop has, by this point, found her way out of the bedroll and is even now waddling over to the Journeyman as he sits against the rear corner of the cave.

Thea doesn't press the Weyrsecond. Instead, she begins pushing up from that bedroll. "Where'd you say those mugs were? I'll get them!" A quick, baffled glance at D'had for his blowing off the healer's request as she flips the coverlet off her legs is followed by her flushing nearly scarlet and covering right back up. She'd forgotten her muddy trous are now kicking around somewhere on the cavern floor. "He asked you for some help," she whispers to D'had. But then Tenebrous heads over with the plates, gets the mugs himself and she drops her eyes to her hands which are now clenched in her lap. "Thank you," the weyrwoman whispers to him when he hands her her mug. As she hands D'had his plate, she leans in, where she can fasten cool eyes upon his and hisses to him, "Can't you be a little more polite as a guest in his home? What's gotten into you?"

"Thanks," D'had echoes Thea's thanks for the food, tacking on a muttered "Sorry, as he's reminded by the weyrwoman of having missed getting the mugs. "Be good babe," he adds, leaning forward to press a kiss to her forehead. "Get better. I should let you rest, get some myself." She said he can't sit outside in this weather and he won't, or he'll let her think that anyway. "Thanks again for breakfast," he adds for the healer, scooping up that bread and egg for the road.

Tenebrous eyebrows quietly as D'had makes his retreat to the front of the cave. "Safe flight home," he offers calmly, casually tossing a bit of food to Flop. The green, for her part, snaps it out of the air, and promptly makes for his feet.

Thea is not mollified by any means, but she drops it, nodding instead to his admonition, "I'll try." To get better, to be good. She's so bad, it'll be a struggle! She calls after him, "Sleep. And bring that bedroll?" Since he's got easy access.

The scents of freshly warmed flatbread and cooked eggs bring a pleasant homey scent to the cavern, which is now blissfully less tense now that Weyrsecond D'had has departed into the dawn skies to return to his Weyr duties. Tenebrous sits by the fire finishing his breakfast while Thea finishes hers over there in her bedroll looking…distressed. Flop is begging for bites of egg and stomach-distending, air polluting gas.

Tenebrous tosses another piece of breakfast to the little firelizard at his feet. "I don't know how many times I have to ask people not to stress you," he murmurs. "It's like I'm not even talking. No one can hear me." he throws another piece to Flop. He eyes Thea. "You should relax…"

"I can hear you." Phylicia's sleep-muddled voice comes from the pile of blankets that she's claimed. She's really like a nesting feline, creating a big pile and then crawling into it. A head peeks out of the blankets and she covers her mouth with a hand, yawning. "What smells good?" She mumbles.

Thea's head turns to Tenebrous when he speaks, "I know," she answers wearily. She manages another bite of the flatbread and egg, which is chewed and swallowed with difficulty. "I just… don't know what's gotten into him." She swallows again adding meekly, "I'm… really sorry. You can ask him not to come back." Phylicia's emergence had her blinking, "Morning Phy. How'd you sleep through all the talking… and cooking?"

Tenebrous sighs. "As much as that idea appeals to me, that wouldn't really be fair, and I'm honestly not sure how to keep him out if he wants in. Not without violence." He lifts another bite of food to his lips, and then promptly sets it back down again. The plate is set on the ground in front of Flop. "Breakfast," he calls quietly. "You slept through it, but I can cook a little more in a few minutes." Slow footsteps take him away from the fire, and towards the cool breath of the waterfall.

Phylicia scrubs at her face with her hands but it takes running her hands through her hair for her to realize what she doesn't have covering her palms as she hisses, brining them into sight. "Oh phoo.." She grumbles to herself, setting her hands in her lap, palms up. But her stomach decides to grumble as well - audibly - which brings a flush to her cheeks. "Please?" Is said to Ten, before bleary eyes turn to Thea. "I think I finally got to sleep sometime not long ago?" Aka, she's been restless and imitating a dead lump in hopes that she'd actually get to sleep. The topic of their other conversation doesn't penetrate her head just yet.

Thea chuckles, a slightly malicious sound to it, "Well I am. See…. I outrank him." She turns to watch him as he passes her. "His passive hostility towards you is stressing me. I can tell him not to come." She shrugs after saying that, her face set. "I don't like the way he's treating you in his home, old sailor or not, he's had the training as a Rider. And knows better." She raises her bread to her mouth, nibble halfheartedly at it, peering over at Phylicia as she does so. "Did I keep you awake again?"

The water is cool upon Tenebrous' face in the dawn hours, and he gazes through it into nothing. Thea and Phylicia speak behind him, but those words drift away too, back into the steady thrum of the cave's ambience. "Home," he murmurs to himself…

'You can't stay the way you are,' she said quietly. 'Like it or not, you've changed.'
'I didn't want to change,' he breathed. 'This isn't what I wanted…'
'You have to choose, boy. You cannot stay where you are now.'
'…Will it hurt? To go forward?'
She sighed. 'No more than it already does,' she whispered.
"You were wrong," Tenebrous mumbles to the falls. "So wrong…"

"Again?" Phylicia asks before covering up another yawn with the back of her hand this time. "Don't think it's your fault if I can't sleep." Though any random mumblings probably haven't helped. But she's really not placing any blame on anything but her body being stupid. She looks around for a moment and pulls her pack to her, scrounging in one of the pockets until she comes up with a tweezers. "By the sounds of it, I should've been yelling at someone again." She says with a grin and a light voice as she goes about picking stuff out of skin that has started to peel. "I miss anything fun?" She can see her mentor standing by the falls and she blinks, calling out tentatively. "Ten?"

Thea's still watching Tenebrous as he stands by the falls, eyeing his back and the way he holds his head and decides to leave him be for now. She turns towards Phylicia. "Wouldn't help, "I'm afraid. He's pretty stubborn." She shakes her head, answering with a short, "No you didn't miss anything fun." It certainly wasn't for her. She places her bread on her plate, unfinished but lifts the mug of banana drink and sips it dutifully as her eyes return towards the man standing by the falls with a small sigh.

Tenebrous turns a little, something catching his hearing. "Hmm?" He turns to face the two fully, moisture on his face, most likely from the falls. "Breakfast," he offers hesitantly. "Right…sorry about that." He pads back over to the fire, absently picking the now clean plate up that he'd left for Flop. "Go home, Flop," he calls quietly. "Give the Master a big kiss for me. Preferably when she's yawning." Flop eyes him disdainfully, sniffs once, and then promptly pops *between*. Moments later, he's got dishes out again, making a smaller omelet for Phylicia. His hands work, but his eyes remain on the flame and the coals.

Phylicia continues picking random debris out of her shedding hands, brows knitting in concentration since pinching your hands doesn't feel good. "Oh. No, I was going to ask if you're feeling okay?" She looks between the two of them and heaves a little sigh. "You both look off, actually." But her stomach rumbles again despite her reassurances that she's more concerned about them.

Thea's eyes remain on Tenebrous as he turns and heads back to the fire. She's not missing a whole lot as she sees his face. Her empty mug is set beside her nearly-full plate beside her, ah Tenebrous' bedroll. She shifts her gaze to Phylicia. "Off might be a good way to put it." She slides back down twitching that coverlet back up and shuts her eyes. Sleepy? Maybe. A retreat? Likely.

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