A Baker's Morning

Xanadu Weyr - Kitchens
As you enter this room from outside, good smells assail you from everywhere. State of the art equipment has been brought in from the various crafts to be used - stoves and large ovens replacing the 2 hearths that used to be in here. Three baking ovens are usually going full bore 12 hours of the day, while the nighttime hours bring the smaller stove beside the door to the main hall into use. This is where you find late night meals of stew and soup simmering in pots, and pitchers of klah and tea in their electric units to be kept warm. Large windows take up the entire of the western wall, generally open wide to the mountainous landscape beyond allowing the cool breezes in to keep the kitchen's temperature to a desirable level. Tables, cabinets, and counters take up the remaining spaces and walls. It is here the majority of the work is done, and spices, herbs, and other foodstuffs found.
Beside the night hearth in the southern wall is the door that leads out into the living cavern.

Morning's fair, cold light shines upon an already bustling kitchen. The scent of the day's breads drift through the delicious temptation of breakfast as the kitchens prepare for breakfast. The crowd in the caverns has only grown, not abated, and so the bakers and cooks both work with a hectic frenzy in controlled chaos. Harmony is one of those who drew breakfast duty, dutifully learning the subtleties of seasoning breakfast foods. As well as doing the grunt work as befitting her apprentice status. Attired in colors pastel, the white apron she wears engulfs her sense of fashion, though her blond hair is braided back with a multitude of colorful ribbons. "Where is —" Before the question can be answered, Harmony's response is, "I've got it here!" and shoves a pan of sticky buns at one of the assistant cooks.

T'maz enters the room staying back at first, just watching the crowds. He then steps in next to where Harmony is working and asks, in a voice that can be heard just over the bustle,"What spices did you put in the sausage?" Some of the other bustling crowd greet T'maz with a wave and a smile. T'maz has also slipped on an apron, though his knot is visible.

Immediately, Harmony's able to round about and answer T'maz with, "Two teaspoons of dried sage, some salt, black pepper and marjoram. I added in some brown sugar to add depth to the flavor and red pepper." A breath's taken. "And some cloves, but not much as I don't want to overpower the other spices." The girl is an over-achiever with her cooking, despite the fact that her mother has spoiled her rotten and made her quite unbearable at times. She's got skills (or so /she/ thinks!).

T'maz smiles at the young woman."Well said young lady… How many redfruit go in a large gather pie?" He has started rolling out crust for bubblies, so the crust was on his mind sort of."I'm Journeyman T'maz, by the way, and Dementh's my brown… He's out sunning himself, I'll introduce you to him later if you like."

Harmony stalls a moment as she thinks, nibbling the corner of her mouth. "How large?" she questions, eyes narrowing slightly in thought at the journeyman. "Let's see… eight red fruit." The senior apprentice makes this statement firmly, with confidence, even if the answer isn't right. Harmony stands behind her answer, though she's momentarily distracted when she's passed more bread rolls to layer butter across the tops of before they go back into the oven. Raising a wrist to rub her forehead with, she leaves a white smudge of flower across the bridge of her cheek.

T'maz hmms."A large gather pie requires ten or so… unless you're trying to feed a huge train coming in." He chuckles at that."My ma made huge pies since she helped with the baking for the Walk train." He adds."She's retired with Da, and they live at Fort Hold now." He then starts hacking at some vegetables after turning the crust over to an auntie who is making the pies.
T'maz adds."Do you have any questions?"

Harmony's next task is dictated by one of the cooks, and so armed with a rolling pin and some dough, she sets about making more of sticky buns. "Okay. Ten red fruits." Duly noted and filed away at the back of her mind. She listens to his comments on his mother, slanting him a green-eyed look, asking politely, "Does she still make them?" Roll, roll, roll. "No questions." Not this girl! She's got confidence in spades. Enough to sink a ship!

T'maz says "She does, when she can, and she knows family's coming… My pa, called First, and Ma, are part of the retired traders that live near Fort Hold, and it's not very rare for Ma to send out a message with her gold to all the children and grandchildren to come for a meal. She hasn't done it this week yet, so I am expecting a note sometime soon.""

Adept at multi-tasking, Harmony does not stop the tasks at hand, concentrating on both the journeyman beside her and the rolls she's currently setting up. It is this duality of duties that keeps her normally sharp and petulant tongue at bay. So the teen's tones are fairly even when she's addressing the journeyman. "Sounds like quite a production," she comments, allowing her eyes to stray to T'maz, "It must be a pretty big feast your mother makes."

T'maz says "She has ten children, and a small hold's worth of grandchildren." He adds."Don't know if you've met my niece Jeddia, but she's the oldest of my oldest brother… his name is J'vry and his bronze was hatched here several turns ago." The Journeyman smiles at the girl."What brings you to Xanadu?"

Harmony slants T'maz a slightly surprised look, but the girl's voice is petulantly proud. "I was born and raised in Xanadu. My mother, Harlee, is a journeyman baker, too. I'm following in *her* footsteps, except I have higher aspirations than she does." Her chin raises as clearly her mother is not instilling any humility in the senior apprentice. "She encourages me, though, and supports me in any way she can." As to the number of children and grandchildren T'maz's mother as, well that only gets a widening of her eyes. In disbelief.

T'maz nods."Yep…What will you plan for your Journeyman project? Mine was a Hatching Feast… I used lots of different recipes from all over Pern…"

"I…" Harmony reconsiders what she's about to say, before going on to say, "I want to have a chili contest. On who can consume the hottest, spiciest foods. I'd like to showcase my own chili and also invite others to participate and show off their own spicy creations." It's a first thought on what she might want to do for her project. "I can make a mean red-hot chili." Definitely a boast, that.

T'maz chuckles."I'll have to invite my niece Candia and her dragon Cinrath to that." He adds."Believe it or not, Cinrath has the heart of a baker in the body of a dragon. Candia's one of my brother J'vry's children."

Pride glows behind Harmony's spoiled countenance, lips curving into a satisfied smile of one who knows their time is coming. She has *grand* plans for her journeyman's project if she ever gets to it. In her eyes, it's clear, that she believes she's mere steps away from achieving her next goal. "We'll be glad to have you," she demurs, casting her eyes downward lest she seem too gleeful in having someone want to come to such an event. "Oh yeah?" she queries, slanting a look back over to wards T'maz. The idea of the soul of a baker in the guise of a dragon is clearly foreign to Harmony, despite her experience with her father's brown. "Does she take ideas from her dragon?"

T'maz nods."The recipe I had for the stew last night came from Cinrath… he suggested the klahbark powder as a topper dusting the sour cream. He said it might taste better like that the first time He smelled the stew at a Trader meet up at the Red Butte.
T'maz adds."Candia had been working on taters nearby and was whipping the sour cream, and Aunt Nippa was making something with klahbark…

Nodding, Harmony comes to the end of her roll-making and finally dusts off her hands on her apron. "Interesting suggestion," she comments as she reaches behind her to untie the apron. "If you'll excuse me, Journeyman," comes the polite withdrawal, "I've got to be getting on to class." She pauses and having realized that she managed the faux pas of not including her own introduction — she'll blame the distraction of cooking every time! — she adds, "I'm Harmony. Senior apprentice." With pride, that's said. "But I'd better be going…" With a salute, she starts making her way through the crowd. It's time to learn!

T'maz nods."We'll talk some other time…" He turns to help an uncle save some falling fruit."Bye for now."

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