What Do I Know?

Xanadu Weyr - Meadow Ridge
The meadow continues its gentle rolls and dips, grass tall and short waving in the slightest of breezes. Each hill seems to grow a bit higher, a bit steeper, as eventually, the meadow works up to a large ridge, the top flattening out at its new elevation.

From the top of the ridge, the view is certainly something to be admired - higher than the majority of the trees, one can look out over the rest of Xanadu Weyr proper. The houses in the lower meadow - each roof a different color - and the clock tower peeking upwards from the its forest surroundings are all visible, as is the cliff that houses the Weyr Caverns themselves. And yet, the ridge also holds an amazing view of the night sky - horizon to horizon - unaffected by the light pollution of the more heavily traveled regions.

Settled upon the ridge is a rather distinctive looking building - nearing three stories tall, circular grey walls have carefully been erected, and a large dome is settled upon this solid foundation. Large panels make up the roof, aside from one section which remains open, and from which the telescope the struction houses peeks out. Sitting adjacent to the tower is a long, low building, meant to serve as offices, record rooms and dorms for those who man the observatory, as well as providing a handy platform for those who seek to use smaller, hand-held 'scopes.

The sun has arced high in the sky, and now it's settled seemingly right in the middle of it. It's noon. Lunch time for most, and there are folks who make their way to the Caverns for their midday meal as they have done so many times in the past. It's a routine. Work. Lunch. Work. Dinner. Wash, rinse, repeat the next day. Ka'el had fallen into that routine easily since being tapped into Galaxy, and he's grown to like it. He knew what was expected of him. He knew what to do, and he did it with only minor bumps along the way. But now, it's as if someone threw a heavy rock on his routine and he can do nothing but watch it shatter into a thousand crystalline pieces. Up here on the ridge, he can see much of the weyr. The cool spring breeze blows a little stronger here than it does below, but it's still a comfortable sort of thing. Kanekith is nowhere to be seen, and Ka'el sits upon the grass, leaned back upon the palm of one hand. The other arm is draped across an upturned knee, and his eyes gaze out upon the rooftops of houses in an unfocused way. He wears regular clothing. No riding leathers or patrolling uniform, or even a knot of any kind at the moment. Right now, he's merely .. Kale.

It's a routine used by most folk in the weyr, unless you're one particular bluerider. Then it's more like: Work. Work. Work. Quick meal. Work. Wash. Other things. Sleep (maybe). Repeat. Kiena is as familiar with her well set routine as Ka'el was of his. Emphasis on 'was'. Truthfully she should be somewhere in the caverns right now grabbing a meal and she was there too until it became too crowded and loud that she made her quiet little exit. Not before snatching a bit of food to go however and she keeps whatever it was she snared wrapped safely in a cloth. The weather is cool but comfortable and that draws Kiena along the outdoor paths, along with something a little birdie tells her as she steps into the meadow. A very big, cerulean blue birdie who apparently has nothing better to do than keep watch — or spy. Having never lingered here on the ridge, the bluerider pauses for a moment to take in the sights and lay of it (hello escape routes?) before walking forwards as quietly as one can in full riding gear. Without a single word she sits down beside Ka'el, a respectful distance between them but close enough not to go unnoticed. No doubt there is already gossip spreading. A gold flight is a hard thing to miss, especially a senior Goldflight and no matter the time of day. Kiena is not one to put much stock in gossiping however and so she sits and says nothing beyond the neutral: "Morning."

Although Ka'el is aware of the arrival of his blueriding friend, he makes no note of having actually seen her. His eyes don't move. They don't exactly focus either, continuing to stare at the vastness of the weyr proper, dotted with rooftops and trees and the moving smudges in his peripheral that likely are humans and runners at work. He's aware that she's sitting at his side now, close enough but not too close, though considering his far off look, she could've sat directly on his lap and it's questionable whether or not there would have been a reaction from him. In the end, it's only her spoken word that brings him out of his reverie, and he blinks once, bringing the world back into focus before his eyes turn to the woman at his side. "Morning," he says in return, his smile slight enough that it could possibly be missed altogether before it slips from his face. Eyes dance over her flight gear, then return to the bird's eye view the ridge offers. "Do you believe it when they say after a storm comes a calm?"

Kiena would never do such a thing and breach so many personal boundaries as to simply plop herself down in his lap or even close enough to be in range for touch. He'd remember how she reacted solely from him trying to steady her on the ice and that, along with her perceived notions of 'respectful', she keeps herself distant. That won't keep her from observing him though and subtly does she watch from the corner of her eyes while she arranges her little cloth sack full of snatched goodies in her lap. With her gaze turned down for that brief moment, she'll miss that look he gives her and the fleeting smile. It's not until he's looked away again over the view of the ridge that she turns her head and frowns, weighing her response. "No," she drawls. "Never did fully believe in it. There's calm but it's never a true calm. Still… you take what you can."

Ka'el slowly bobs his head in answer to her, apparently agreeing with her assessment. But he's gone quiet again. This is probably the most quiet she's ever heard the usually talkative rider be! But the chit chat and jokes and too-personal questions are slow in coming today, dominated instead by a mood that keeps him a little more introverted than usual. He sits forward a little, withdrawing his hand from the grass that was being used as a lean to, and instead plucks at the grass in an idle motion. "I don't feel much calm after last night's storm," he admits after allowing the silence to stretch on for another minute or so. "I feel like everything's been shaken an' tossed around and thrown, and I've to pick up the broke pieces and find the ones that were lost and put it all back together. Like that storm came through and turned everything upside down." He flicks a blade of grass away before turning to look at her. "Has Ujinath told you?" he asks, sounding as if he already knows the answer. Few secrets are kept between dragons, and Kanekith has not been shamed to broadcast his win, boasting of his prowess of winning himself yet another queen. The Queen of queens, this time.

Kiena has noted the difference but isn't about to call him out on it quite yet. Does it have her concerned? Yes. But she's a master at keeping herself from being too openly readable and so that is tucked away for now. Her brother would be proud to see how neutral she can keep her features set! It helps that she's calm or calm enough to focus while she waits in silence for Ka'el to speak, allowing him to tread as far into things as he wishes to. "Most flights will do that." she points out with a vague smirk. "Given the flight as it was and what it means… it's to be expected." Cryptic much? Not that it will have to be much longer and Kiena nods her head with an almost guilty air. "Yes. Ujinath told me not long after all was, uh… said and done. You know how the dragons are. I knew too when Seryth had gone to the grounds." Oh the joys of a gold's broadcasting. That brings a more visible grimace to Kiena's lips. "Nothing beyond that." Until Kanekith boasted and Ujinath was all too pleased to absorb the news. The blue likes to keep on the pulse of the Weyr he calls home. All the easier to protect those he loves from threats, after all. Kiena falls silent now and there is no congratulations given or much of… anything, really. Just a quiet sense of anticipation from the bluerider, as though she waits for his reaction first, if any.

She knows. Every dragonrider in a hundred mile radius probably knows thanks to Kanekith's big gloating mouth! But, oh, can Ka'el really be upset with his lifemate for that? It isn't as if this could be kept … a secret. It's not something meant to be secretive no matter how much he wishes he could just pretend it never happened and go back to his usual Galaxy sweeps. He plucks another blade of grass, happy that no excessively celebratory words are offered, unsure if this truly is something to be celebrated. "I told her I wouldn't screw it up," he says, not elaborating on who the 'her' is he's referencing, but it likely doesn't take much thinking to figure it out. "But … what the hell do I know about a runnin' a Weyr? What qualifies me to be in charge've anybody?" He abandons his grass pulling and drapes his arms upon both upturned knees now, his expression shadowed with thought. "I've lived here…five turns, and not once had I ever thought about what the Weyrleader does. And now, I'm going to get this knot and am goin' to be expected to…run things. Shards, I can barely run my own shardin' life without some catastrophe happening." But at least they're personal catastrophes. A catastrophic event for the entire weyr would be a thousand times worse!

There are never secrets in a Weyr. Not for very long! And he could pretend that nothing ever happened. Just take that knot and return it and cause a whole different sort of uproar and scandal if he really wants to see what will stir a Weyr up (if not the entire planet). Nothing like taking age old tradition and shoving it back in everyone's faces? Kiena can't even begin to comprehend what Ka'el must be experiencing. Oh, she knows flights. But to wake up and suddenly be THE Weyrleader, no questions asked? She'd probably not be taking it as calmly as he is and for that reason she isn't being her usual snarky and sarcastic self. "I don't think you will, if that's any consolation." she mutters. "Though everyone probably expects a small blunder here or there before you get it. Well… anyone with enough common sense anyways." Shifting on the grass, she turns to face him and tilting her head to the side, she listens even though her eyes slide away to stare out over the view from the ridge. "That remains to be seen. If you 'qualify' if that's the word you wanna use." Kiena does her best to keep her tone level and neutral too, which is difficult for her. So is thinking her words through before she spits them out. "I think personal life and runnin' a Weyr are two vastly different things. Might not be as bad as you're worryin' about. You've got support you know. Experienced support?" Right? Kiena almost sounds uncertain at that, though the bluerider should know the inner workings of most Weyr systems.

"It's hard to hear that makin' mistakes is ok. She said the same thing to me this morning. I don't want to make mistakes. Me messin' up is going to affect too many people…" Oy. It's sinking in little by little just how much responsibility has been laid so unceremoniously on his shoulders. The whole weyr! Every wing and every rider is his domain. … Geeze. Ka'el makes a winced face, lifts a hand to pinch at the bridge of his nose, then falls back onto his back, eyes set straight up to the sky. "I'm glad you have such faith in me," he says, turning his head enough to look at her. "Maybe it'll rub off on me an' I'll have a little faith in myself. I don't want to let anybody down. Thea's last Weyrleader, that A'dmar guy? No one liked him. He was awful. An' then he got.. kicked out, fired, quit, I dunno. She deserves somebody she can count on." And he's supposed to be that somebody, at nineteen turns old, a full-fledged rider for only a turn and a half? "I hope you're right. Thea did said I'll have help .. from the Steward and Headwoman." He snorts at that, not sounding impressed at all. "So I'm not sure if 'experienced' is the right word for at least one've them." But, it's better than no one ….. right?

Kiena peers up at Ka'el as she turns her head to face him and her brows have knitted together into a heavy frown. "No one is perfect and neither is any Weyrleader I've known. You're going to make mistakes. It's expected! The little ones that everyone has to stumble through when put into a position or situation they don't know nothing about." Deal with it! Not that her tone exactly implies it but it certain hints at it. Her lips twist up at one corner into a vague half-smile, half smirk. "I'm sure others do too, just not me. And if yer already worrying yourself into a broodin' mess over screwing up… I think you'll be fine." She shakes her head. "Never crossed paths with A'dmar but I heard enough to know I may be fortunate. It's true not every rider is cut out for the position but…" She shrugs. "I stand by my previous comment. If I found you struttin' about in full blown bragging and puffed with ego? Yeah, then there'd be a problem. Maybe." Kiena snorts, giving him another long look before recalling she has food with her. She picks at a bit of it, not truly interested though she'll set the cloth aside in a silent 'help yourself' offer to Ka'el. It's just finger food mostly, anything she could grab that would hold up to being transported like it was. "Anyone worth their salt know that you can ask for help and advice but nothing says you have to heed it. Get it? Go to them regardless if you think they're 'experienced or whatever… and listen. Or pretend to if you have to. Better than jumping into this blind, wouldn't you think?" A thought crosses her mind then and the bluerider begins to chuckle. "In fact, you could do the same with all I'm babbling at you. Shards if I know what I'm doing, eh?"

"I usually leave the braggin' and ego flauntin' to Kanekith," Ka'el says with his first smirk since the encounter began. But after that comment, he finds himself falling quiet again, stopping to give what she said time to sink in and him time to try to analyze it. Everyone makes mistakes, he'll just have to get over his when they happen. That's easier said than done, but oh will he try to. It'd be one less burden! And disregarding that burden just became a little easier with the offering of food, which reminds his stomach that he hasn't eaten anything since … yesterday! He's nearly famished! He plucks up a little triangle cut mini sandwich and bites into it happily. His stomach growls in complaint, wanting him to eat them all at once like an untamed animal, but that's not his style, no matter how hungry he may be. "Thanks," he says after a swallow. "With all … this, I forgot to eat. .. Didn't think to eat." He didn't feel hungry at the time, but now, he's ravenous! Worrying will do that to a guy, and thus he takes another bite of his sandwich as he listens, chewing, then swallowing. "I've never been really good at pretending… But, I figure pretendin' is a good skill for a weyrleader to have. .. I'll tell you what though. I'm not just pretendin’ to listen to you now. You sound like you know what you're doin'," he says with a crooked grin. "I think that's good enough." He pauses for a moment, still on his back, though he soon props himself up on an elbow. "Whether or not I blow it … we're still friends, right?"

Kiena chuckles dryly. "Good call, leaving that sort of behaviour to him." she drawls, reverting back to her usual behaviours and habits for that short amount of time. Then the quiet comes back and Kiena sobers, keeping to her thoughts while Ka'el mulls and works through his own. She'll watch him take a sandwich and eat it, too far to hear his stomach's growled complaints. He can help himself to it all, Kiena has already had what she wants of it and makes no move to reclaim the cloth or help herself to any of the food. "Sometimes it's good to pretend. Part of the whole political thing that I don't, uh.. really get." Kiena admits with a smirk. Have fun with that? "You might regret listening to my advice?" she points out with another chuckle but in the same stride she smiles faint and crookedly. Then she blinks, confused as she stares back at him. "Why would that change anything?" she asks, her mind still scrabbling to cope with the word 'friend' let alone what he just asked her.

Ka'el sits up because eating while laying down is a weird thing when it comes to swallowing. And so he sits up comfortably while devouring her food, becoming increasingly glad that she brought it with each bite he takes. "I haven't regretted any bit've advice you've given me yet," he counters with a small smile, brows raising at her. Touche. But at her question, his smile somewhat fades and he lowers his morsel of a sandwhich that he has left in his hand. "At the risk of soundin' like an idiot…" he begins, "I … know that not everybody likes associating with Quasar. Politics an' all that. Not everyone's so trusting of fancy knots on a shoulder. It only takes one bad experience with a Weyrleader of Weyrwoman or whoever else to leave a bad taste in someome's mouth about'm all. Plus…" This is the part that's more centered around her and less of the general population, "…feels like I'm becomin' more an' more similar to what I think you were tryin' to get away from in Western," he says, picking his words carefully and hoping those were the right ones.

Not to mention the risk of choking! Kiena likewise looks a touch surprised, "Not a single bit, huh?" Somehow she finds that hard to believe but with a shrug she accepts it. Back to listening in respectful quiet, now she looks baffled again and almost does call him an idiot. Playfully of course! She bites her tongue and smiles crookedly, almost sheepish for her near blunder. Cough. "You're makin' it seem like associating with Quasar riders is a curse or something…" she drawls with faint amusement and then adds in a serious tone. "Don't really matter to me if you've got the fancy knot or you're part of whatever Wing…" Ahh, there's the REAL reason. Kiena blinks, stares and is left speechless for a moment as she struggles to gather her wits. "What?" Pause. Then she starts to laugh and laughs even as she speaks. Which… probably won't help things much. "I won't hate you for being Weyrleader, Ka'el. I think you got something confused there. I've issues with Zi'on and Th'ero on personal levels. Don't have squat to do with their ranks. It just… happened to work out that way. You've given me no reason to dislike you."

Hey, she gives good advice! Not that Ka'el has done every single thing she has advised, but still! He pops the last bit of sandwich in his mouth to chew and swallow. "Hey, it's a curse for some people who only have to talk to Quasar because they did somethin' wrong," he remarks with a vague grin that stills on his face as she begins to laugh. Laugh? She's laughing at him! A brow is cocked as he watches her, trying to figure out his own blunder before she reveals it to him. What? … Oh. He smirks and rakes his fingers through his hair, eyes lifting up to the sky. "Yes but, I'm just saying it's a trend!" he says as his arm drops, giving her a crooked grin. "It could be a curse for all we know. Personal issues come up because they're Weyrleaders. I've been Weyrleader for only…oh… nine hours now? The curse hasn't had time to manifest, if it is truly a curse. Only time will tell.." Oooh, spooky! He grins afterwards though, not putting much faith into his words that weyrleading friends of hers are destined to become enemies!

See? He's already practice not taking all advice given to him through her! If Kiena knew this, it'd be something she'd point out and likely laugh while doing it. "So you're stressin' about the gossips? Those folks who's bright point of the day is to find something to gripe about for the sake of it?" she asks while turning her head to stare at him again, only this time curiously. Well? Then she went and laughed and she's still working through it and down to low chuckles by the time he's half way through speaking. Something he says sobers her right up quick and she's frowning heavily, chewing at her lower lip. Wait, no. That's not how she meant it! "No no… the issues came up before they were Weyrleaders. Well — Th'ero anyways. My issue with Zi'on came from who he IS. You are not Zi'on or anywhere close. First of all, you've not tried to get into my pants. Ever. So… already you're this," And she holds her hand up as high as she can without stretching too far from where she sits and smirks. "…much higher in regards as respectful." She snorts, amused. "If you're cursed at all! Maybe you'll be the one to break it? Or we'll just all have to wait in suspense!" Spooooky!

Ka'el whistles at the height that her hand shows. "That much, huh? Well then I've nothin' to worry about, do I?" There's almost a joke on his tongue about how proud his parents will be, but … the topic is still a sore enough one that it doesn't make it past his lips. "It's good to know you think so highly of me! And as for my curse…which I think one of us has … I think my first task as Weyrleader will be to send the masses off to hunt for a cure!" Now his playfulness is beginning to return, as seen in the crooked grin on his face. "And I'm not only stressin' about gossip," he remarks. "But… Gossip is a thing to worry about. Y'never know what's true or not, and if it's all bad, then I'll already be startin' off on the wrong foot!" Or something like that. He smirks at her, glancing out towards the weyr again. His weyr. Sigh. "One thing I like about you is how you're always honest. So. If I start messin' up too badly or you see me turnin' into some sort of jerk? Knock some sense into me, will you? I'll appreciate it, in the long run."

"Nope! Nothing to worry about. At least in that regard." Kiena says with a wide grin which… may be frightening considering how rare she grins like that? Best not bring up the parents as that may be a whole boatload of awkwardness best not shared. "If there's one of us cursed, it'd be me." Already taking the fall! Then she chuckles and shakes her head, "Good luck with that! And eh, well… take the gossip with a grain of salt really. Honestly though, focus your worries to things that matter." Which are? The bluerider doesn't elaborate, but she does begin to draw her feet under her and with one quick move she is up on her feet and dusting off her pants. "I'm honest with those I trust," Kiena says slowly as she looks down at him, allowing that to sink in before her mouth quirks into an amused smirk. "Do you prefer open hand or closed fist for the knockin'?" she drawls, promptly demonstrating with her right hand held up in a threatening but totally joking manner. "Don't think you'll need me to tell ya, Ka'el." Kiena admits, glancing back towards the meadow. "Anyways. I best be getting back." She fidgets. She's never been good at these parts, the farewells. "Good luck with… all of it. And, uh… yeah. You know where to find me if you just want to talk or vent. No rank." She starts to step back then, hands going into the pocket of her jacket but not before she offers a salute that is, more or less, also teasing.

The smile that curves Ka'el's lips is a genuinely warm one. Trust. He did pick up her meaning. She trusts him, and a little bit of trust can go a long way when it comes to maintaining relationships. And their friendship is definitely worth maintaining! "Open," he says in reference to her fist. "Makes a nice slappin' sound, don't you think? The sound've it is probably goin' to help straighten me out that much faster." So, open handed smackdown it shall be! He rises to his feet too, standing because she is, and as she speaks of going he nods and glances once down the grassy slope. "I'm goin' to need all the luck I can get.." he says with a smirk, thanking her afterwards for her well wishes. "Trampoline weyr, right? If things get too bad, maybe we can just jump around on that for a while. It ought to be enough to make any stress disappear for a while." Ranks be damned! He turns to face her, and at that salute he receives he super exaggeratedly rolls his eyes. "That was a sloppy salute, Kiena. I may have to send you back to Weyrling training!" he calls in her wake, his voice playful. Although considering leaving as well, he instead reclaims his spot on the grass to sit, picks up another sandwich triangle, and eats, looking just as thoughtful as he did at the start, but feeling just a little less doomed.

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