Hazy With a Bit of Steam

Continued from: Of Oeuvres


Xanadu Weyr - Wanderin' Wherry Tavern

It is often whispered in the crowds that converge here, that a certain Weyrleader was asked what he wanted in the remodeling of the pub that was not so long ago given a refreshing. He muttered back over the rim of his ever-present mug, "I don't care what you do with the place, just so long as there is plenty of ale." With that in mind, cask after cask of ale lines the walls of the tavern, the remodeler's idea of a jest. As they age, the casks bring a real rustic atmosphere to the pub, along with the deeply wooden flavor that seems to be the theme throughout.
The lighting is dim, as it should be in all good pubs, and the tables and chairs are plentiful. A long mahogany bar, intricately carved with runner beasts, stands vigilant duty at the head of the bar, lined with stools for those patrons that seek the bartender's company.

The evening is well under way and though dinner is being served in the caverns, there are those who choose to take theirs in the liquid form - or eat something different here. Some people are such regular patrons that it's quite predictable who will be in attendance. Thus, it is here Darsce looks for - and spots at a booth in the back upon entering - her father. He's probably just arrived, for he's not yet drinking anything but looks to be waiting service. Darsce takes a deep breath and flicks the man beside her a somewhat nervous look. "So there he is," she points to the aging bluerider. And she's reluctant and at the same time, determined but the look she gives Jethaniel is, 'are you sure you want to go through with this?'

Jethaniel looks over the tavern as he arrives, as it is useful to orient oneself to a changed environment. He is, however, not the one who is aware of the precise element in the environment for which they are searching, and so his gaze returns to Darsce as she locates that man, then follows her indication. The booth is observed; so is the occupant thereof, and then he returns his attention to Darsce. Her uncertainty is noted, but Jethaniel simply nods. "And we are here." His arm goes around her, resting against the small of her back - though he does not attempt to provide any motive force - as he says, "Shall we?" They can merge here and there, ideally without causing excessive ripple effects through spacetime. His certainty is - if incomplete - sufficient.
Fresh from duties, Mur'dah ducks into the tavern for a drink of some sort, and some food before he's off on another delivery. Still in his work leathers with his work satchel, Kalsuoth is settled outside, the dark brown resting before they're off again. Stepping in behind Darsce and Jethaniel, the brownrider gives a low chuckle and nudges his sister's shoulder. "Hey."

Darsce hasn't spoken to her father since… the night of her ill-fated mating flights lesson when she tried to seek some parental support. That attempt was a failure due to his insobriety. And then she determinedly collected all of his whiskey stash, which… is still in the bottom of her closet, untouched. She's going to attempt yet again to…well, talk to him but not about his life choices. That's… for him to handle - he's a big boy. As Jethaniel's arm goes around her, she leans against him momentarily. "Right. Let's go get this over with," she says. Another deep breath and a step - her shoulder is nudged. She yeeps and peers behind her. Jumpy much Darsce? "Oh, hi Squirt." Hey, there's safety in numbers! And so she reaches for his sleeve. "Come help me introduce Jethaniel to-" a nod directs him to that back corner where D'had is just being served a glass. And then off she goes, with Jethaniel's arm around her, towing her kid brother by the sleeve. Hi Dad?

The bluerider in question in the booth looks up as the trio approaches. He's hungover from last night's drunk, looking rumpled, creased and a touch grouchy. But two of them are his kids and so D’had greets them with, "Hey." A half-smile tugs at his unshaven face as he nods to the booth for them to join him. "Have a drink with yer old man." The other… gets an owlish squint and a frown. "He's just leavin', yeah?" This asked in an under-toned growl to Darsce.

Jethaniel may hope for this to be a positive experience, as opposed to one simply survived. He will, however, accept getting it over with as a sufficient outcome, so he nods to Darsce. His arm tightens around her for a moment as she leans in, then relaxes to a position conducive for the walk across the bar. Before he does so, his head turns at the salutation. "Hello, Mur'dah." Jethaniel accompanies the greeting with a sociable nod, and does not protest Darsce's decision to take her younger sibling along. Mur'dah is unlikely to make the situation worse. D'had… is a large proportion of the situation. Jethaniel's expression, as they approach, is apparently calm - though Darsce will be able to feel he is not entirely without tension, given the position of his arm. He smiles politely for D'had's question concerning himself, but does not answer it directly. "Hello, sir." He does not remove his arm from around Darsce. This may constitute an answer.

Mur'dah peers around them to spot their father in the corner, and he blinks. "Oh." Maybe he didn't expect him here (despite D'had's routines) or maybe he was just yearning to be close to the man that was once his father. Faranth only knows why Mur'dah's expression shifts the way it does, but he straightens his shoulders and nods. "Sure," he murmurs, moving forward and then signaling to a waitress. "Ale," he orders for himself, glancing at the others to see what they choose.

It's entirely possible that a few turns ago, when he was happily with Mur'dah's mother this would have gone even worse, given D'had's over-protective tendencies. Under his hand, Jethaniel will feel her rib cage expand and shrink as she takes another breath and braces herself as they draw up to that table. Darsce has no such illusions of this encounter being a positive experience. She's going to give this her best try though. To his growled greeting, she says brightly, "Don't be silly, Daddy Darling, he's here to see you!" As she bends to brush a kiss to his rough cheek, she slides her hand down Jethaniel's arm to twine her fingers with his. At the same time she's tugging on Mur'dah's sleeve with the other hand to (hopefully) draw her brother forward. She slides into the booth opposite her father, scooting over so Jethaniel may sit. "Pink lemonade with vodka, please," she orders and flicks a look at her bother. Please, humor him, it says. "Daddy Darling, this is Jethaniel, Jethaniel this is my…papa." Okay so there was a little hiccup there. She's working it.

D'had smiles - at least for the kiss of greeting - though he mutters when he's corrected. "Don't be sassy." He does slouch over to give Mur'dah some room, but he's eyeing the hand holding his daughter's before his dark eyes travel up that arm to the man. "Huh. I ain't sir anymore. Wha'd you wanna see me for?"

Jethaniel is, in fact, here to see D'had, and he nods to that as his fingers curve familiarly with Darsce's. The look does not cause them to untwine; instead, Jethaniel follows Darsce to a seat in the booth. Their hands remain above the table. He glances to the waitress, and requests, "A whiskey sour, please." While it would be plausible, after his day, to state a requirement a drink, he does not. He does, however, require a beverage as a form of social lubricant, though he may - depending on how the next few minutes go - not have much chance to drink it. With that order made, he returns his attention to D'had as Darsce provides the introductions… if not the context. That is, however, requested by the older man, and so Jethaniel inclines his head slightly to acknowledge the disinclination for a title. If the hierarchy of the Weyr is to be considered, the application of sir would be reversed. That is, however, not currently applicable, and so Jethaniel simply omits the title and explains, as requested. "I wished to tell you-" not ask, tell "-that Darsce and I are-" Jethaniel considers his words with the hope of avoiding any problematic conclusions. This may be impossible; he proceeds nevertheless. "-engaged."

Mur'dah isn't going to abandon her as he sits down beside their father, glancing at Darsce and Jethaniel for a long moment. Then he just sits. And waits. And tenses just in case he needs to…you know. Do something.

D'had knows who Jethaniel is. He's just always…ignored formalities. He doesn't look pleased about the hand-holding but then he's still got it that his girls are still… little girls. He lifts his whiskey and eyes Jethaniel over the rim, pauses at the revelation, and knocks it back. The glass is set down and tapped a few times. That'll be his request for a refill. He doesn't reply to Jethaniel. Instead he looks to Darsce. "So hussy, y'pregnant?"

Aaaand that's when the 'tender arrives with their drinks, how nice! She sets them down - Mur'dah's ale, Jethaniel's whiskey sour and Darsce's pink lemonade with vodka - takes D'had's glass and whisks away with a little burble of laughter. "Daddy!" Darsce wail-gasps, "No! And I told you not to call me that. It's not funny!" Can she have the vodka without the lemonade, please?

Jethaniel does not remove his hand from Darsce's. He does not require D'had's approval, and so as the bluerider drinks, Jethaniel's expression is unchanged. He frowns at the question addressed to Darsce, and his fingers curl against hers more firmly. The arrival of his glass is ignored - so is he, by Darsce's father. D'had is, once again, not speaking to him, but Jethaniel still addresses the bluerider, his tone stiff with forced politeness. "There is no ulterior motive." Or forcing function. "I love Darsce, and will be marrying her." Were there something that required doing, he and Mur'dah would both - to judge from their tension - be ready. There seems, however, to be a lack of suitable actions.

Mur'dah frowns at his father's nickname, exhaling softly. "No, Dad," the brownrider murmurs, giving him a look.

"Sorry, Baby. I was just checking cos it's important," D'had mutters before his dark eyes shift to Jethaniel and his brows lift. "Yeah? You'd better," he growls that before turning to look at Mur'dah. "What? I'm just… How you doin' son?" Like… he's just seen him. He turns back to Jethaniel, considering. "Yer Steward. You can afford her. But are ya sure you can put up with 'er? She's a lot like her ma." And here comes the 'tender with his refill. And three other glasses of whiskey (in response to those three extra taps his finger made on the glass). D'had takes a sip of his first glass while watching Jethaniel now.

Darsce is… at a loss. "Oh daddy, really!" She's both sighing and eyerolling, barely keeping from huffing her pique at both his question and his comment. She's not like her mother… is she? She frowns at that. Though she does smile at Jethaniel before she turns to the man across the table. "And I love him," she says simply before lifting her drink. This day couldn't get any harder, could it?

In one sense, the question is important, if rather problematic in form. In another… it is entirely irrelevant, because it makes no difference to Jethaniel's intentions. His fingers do, however, relax somewhat, and his thumb trails along the side of Darsce's hand as he nods to D'had's demand - or is that threat? His other hand reaches for his drink, though he does not yet lift it, as D'had's attention has returned to him. He is, in fact, Steward, though the mention of affording Darsce receives an arched eyebrow. Jethaniel is, however, successful in lowering that brow to a neutral position. He is not successful in avoiding a frown at the mention of Asher, but that frown transmutes to a smile at Darsce's declaration of love for him, his eyes resting on her for a moment before he returns his attention to D'had. "I believe the differences are key." Not that he has any extensive knowledge of Asher. When it comes to Darsce, however… "I am sure." He has obtained supporting evidence for that hypothesis. "Furthermore, she appears capable of putting up with me." His lips curve slightly in a smile, and he lifts his drink to have a sip. The beverages are also hard, though the word does not, in this context, refer to difficulty.

This is Darsce, daughter of Asher and D'had. So the old bluerider filters his experience with those females though his history with that woman rather than his most recent…now ex-weyrmate. He grumps, "Sure, yer sure now." But he seems satisfied about that, for he waves a hand about putting up with, affording and differences. Uh huh, whatever. "A toast," he says, pushing those extra whiskey glasses towards them - and Mur'dah too. "To the happy couple gettin' hitched… ah… when?" He'll look to Darsce to supply that information though his real question is, can this potential son in law drink like a man? He lifts the glass to clink with theirs and then downs the contents.

Darsce is just enduring the conversation between the two men. The sooner this is over, the sooner she can leave. She sips her pink drink, gives Jethaniel an appreciative look for his supportive sentiment and smiles in spite of the situation. "Putting up with you will be my pleasure," she murmurs aside to him, then more audibly, "At turnover. In the evening in the forest glade. You'll be there?" Sober please! But what's this? She's getting passed a small heavy tumbler half-full of amber liquid. Lovely! She puts her lemonade vodka down, takes it, eyes flick from Jethaniel to her father, she clinks back and copies her father's motion. Gulp! Aaaaand immediately she chokes as she swallows the liquid. What was that about hard drinks not being difficult?

The future is an uncertain thing; Jethaniel is aware of this fact, but he nevertheless intends to have his current sentiment persist into the future. He is making a public proclamation of that sentiment - in the form of the upcoming wedding - because his intention for it to persist is sufficiently strong that he is willing to construct social ad legal consequences for himself should he not maintain that sentiment and intention. D'had's grumping - as it is not followed by further interrogation, and proceeds instead to a toast - appears to nevertheless find him sufficient. The drink Jethaniel ordered also contains whiskey, but in a rather more dilute and sweetened form than the tumbler D'had pushes at him. Given the circumstances, however, Jethaniel conducts the replacement. It is an upgrade in the sense that it increases the proportion of alcohol to be consumed, but this change may not be considered strictly advantageous, and certainly corresponds to an increase in the harshness on the palate and throat. Jethaniel nods agreement to Darsce's statement concerning the wedding's placement in time and space, then lifts the glass and clinks it together with the others. Having done so… he drinks. It is not the first time he has had whiskey neat. There was a certain memorable night at Landing which… he will not, given the present company, describe. He does, however, demonstrate his capability to down that whiskey without coughing, sputtering, or otherwise reacting in any significant manner. The difficulty of a drink is independent of its hardness; whiskey is both, to not insignificant degrees. This fact is one that Darsce is discovering, and Jethaniel lowers his own glass to look at her with concern. "It is… rather strong," he notes in a quiet tone, with a dip of his head and a brush of his thumb against her hand. He does not comment further on it, but he does keep his attention on her to ensure the sputtering does not lead to further adverse reactions.

D'had is signaling for another round by flipping a markcoin in a two-fingered tapping on the table, while keeping his eyes on Jethaniel. Darsce's choke-sputtering is given awkward concern, a reach across the table to ineffectually backpat her. It… lands awkwardly on one of her shoulders. "You okay, Baby?" he asks. "Takes some getting used to," he admits gruffly to her with somewhat of a grudging approval for the attentiveness Jethaniel is showing his daughter. See? He's already loosening up. Further interrogation? Oh that's coming, never fear! He's just waiting to see if this man is worthy of his cross-examination! He grunts when Jethaniel drinks so adroitly. Nice, but how does he hold his liquor?

Darsce is certain of the future! For her the desire to wed is much more than sentiment - it is commitment. Something neither D'had nor Asher modeled for her; it's something she longs for. The ceremony is merely a celebration of that. She's lost in her sputtering enough that Jethaniel's ease in taking the whiskey is lost on her, but the tale of Landing might be interesting and she'd listen if he spoke of it. The 'tender arrives efficiently with another round and the glasses are served to each of them. At the shoulder pat and Jethaniel's solicitousness, she rasps, "That's nasty!" Darsce eyetics and pushes the empty tumbler away. Then she reclaims her pink lemonade. The vodka is nearly tasteless, the sugar helps and she'll sip this while they go drink for drink; she's already…feeling the effects.

Darsce is the only portion of the present company to which Jethaniel would recount that story. Perhaps a situation will arise for him to do so, but at present… he remains conscious of where he is and who he is with. He also remains conscious; this may, given D'had's order of another round, come into question at some point during the evening. Between the trip to Ierne and their arrival here, did they find an opportunity for dinner? They certainly didn't eat it there, despite an offer. Jethaniel can feel the burn in his throat; he is aware of the alcohol content it indicates. He is not particularly inclined to test the limits of his tolerance, regardless of what food may be present to slow the alcohol's absorption. His head tilts down at Darsce's description of the whiskey, a smile replacing the concern. "Indeed." How else would men prove their manliness? Wrestling whers has a somewhat unacceptable rate of attrition. Jethaniel takes the second whiskey provided, but having proven his capability… he does not repeat the gesture. He'll sip this one, even if D'had may drink his own, Darsce's, and Mur'dah's in the time Jethaniel will take for his. This course of action will likely not meet with D'had's approval, but it may permit Jethaniel to continue to hold that liquor, and he is willing to accept the impugnment upon his perceived masculinity. Jethaniel's plans for the future do not require anything from D'had; his commitment to Darsce is present regardless of her father's opinion. If she found it essential for her reciprocation, this meeting would likely have happened significantly sooner. As such… the stakes of this encounter are relatively low; so is Jethaniel's tolerance for alcohol, as he does not habitually drink. The whiskey he is consuming… will certainly have an effect. "I find," he notes to D'had as a point of conversation - perhaps one capable of staving off interrogation - "that the qualities of such drinks vary by locale." Not that he's drunk much in any of them… but there have been occasions.

They… probably haven't had dinner because they haven't been back all that long with the time difference being somewhere after lunch in Ierne yet. Darsce might have, given events just passed claimed to have no appetite and avoided the caverns. So that sudden arrival of whiskey in her stomach is likely being readily absorbed and she…is beginning to relax enough to disengage her fingers from Jethaniel's and gently withdraw her hand, nudge his arm with her shoulder in order to prompt him to lift it so she may snuggle up to his side. In front of her father. She ignores that second tumbler the 'tender has set before her and sips her own sweet drink. And this - D'had's behavior would be - partly - why she's avoided this meeting for so long.

D'had drinks smoothly, barely pausing between mouthfuls. He grunts about the qualities of drinks in different locals. With a half-smirk, he says, "They do what they're supposed ta do." Which is get him drunk. What? He's a sailor - or was. He's not picky! "Where'd ya say you were from? An' wha'd ya do before you were steward?" He means Jethaniel, even though he uses no name. He rarely uses them. And he doesn't now when he leans back unsteadily against the back of the banquette and shoots his daughter a question, "Have ya told yer ma yet?"

"Ah. That would, in fact, be one of the qualities they share," Jethaniel says of D'had's perspective on drinks, and has another sip of his own. He, given a plan to execute on, did not think to include a detour for food. The fact that he did not consider it a prerequisite for his arrival in the tavern may be considered an indication of the infrequency with which Jethaniel spends his time here. The whiskey in his own stomach is also being absorbed; thus far, there is proportionately less alcohol in him than in Darsce, but Jethaniel is also continuing to sip that whiskey, so the difference may not be maintained for long. His gaze lowers to their hands as Darsce untwines hers, but the nudge in against him makes his lips curve in an affectionate smile as his arm lifts and curves around her. The optimality of this course of action, given that they are in front of her father, is not actually considered. Judgment is one of the first things to go, when exposed to alcohol. The smile lingers as Jethaniel lifts his gaze to D'had once more. "Cove Hold, originally." He is not yet so intoxicated as to not realize the questions are for him, or for his voice to be unclear. "I was - am - a technician, ranked a senior journeyman." He chuckles briefly. "I'm on partial duty." Because he's steward now, and the roles are - while not entirely incompatible - somewhat disparate. He doesn't answer the question given Darsce. He does frown at it.

Darsce is sipping, by now absently - she really doesn't need the drink but hey, it's something to do while she mellows under Jethaniel's arm. In fact, she's got her head leaned back against his shoulder, but rouses at the question. "Yes. I told her," she says shortly without a smile. "She's probably coming." And this is the whiskey, "So you two had better not ruin it by fighting."

D'had isn't much of a conversationalist. And the whiskey, rather than help seems to send him off on random tangents. He nods, bobbing his head a few more times than necessary, to the man's place of origins. "Been there t' ship." He drinks again, finds it all icemelt and grimaces before lowering the tumbler and taking up the one Mur'dah has passed up. Ah! Better. He stares at Jethaniel for a moment then, "Modern's good, modern's good." He's grudging there, but his vagueness has more to do with growing up on a ship than preferring the old ways. Afterthought - perhaps to reassure himself, "Sure you're alight 'r she wouldn'ta made ya Steward." Dark eyes move sluggishly to the young woman by his side only then seeming to see the cuddling. He frowns and mutters something about fighting, then comments, "Sure she wants to do everything for ya." For the wedding, he means.

Random tangents are not the least conducive to conversation of the possible responses. Jethaniel's own distraction is primarily because of Darsce's presence against him, though the alcohol does encourage him to permit that distraction. He nods to D'had's comment concerning Cove Hold. "Easy currents, except around the cape." He gestures vaguely with the mostly-empty tumbler of whiskey, pointing on a chart that doesn't actually exist. "The one between there and…" Where again? Ah, yes. "Landing." Jethaniel is not a seacrafter - but his father is, and so he learned enough to make himself useful on a small ship and to be Erijeane's mate (and, indeed, the entirety of her crew) on a light skiff. It has, however, been some turns since he made use of those skills; his recent endeavors have been more… modern. He inclines his head in a somewhat exaggerated nod for D'had's opinion of that modernity. "It is often advantageous." His fingertips trail along Darsce's upper arm, and he adds, "Particularly when integrated with more traditional aspects…" He smiles, the expression coming easily. So do his words, though the cadence of them slows slightly to compensate for a vocal apparatus which appears to have become less reliable. When Jethaniel has exhausted the whiskey in pure form, he transitions to the soured version. It is slightly less alcoholic. It is also significantly less perceptibly alcoholic, and the sweetness may contribute to furthering a lack of judgment concerning how much of it he drinks and a general disinclination to find the effects problematic. His appointment to Steward, he vaguely nods to but does not discuss. For Darsce's answer regarding her mother, he turns his head in her direction, listening attentively. He kisses at her hair - despite her father watching - in response to her requirement for a lack of ruin from her parents. There are, in fact, potential parental issues on both sides, and it is not entirely Darsce's mother of whom he is thinking when he looks back to D'had and says, "We're doing things ourselves."

Rather than drowsy, Darsce is beginning to feel fine. It's been a fairly stressful afternoon and the whiskey, while burning her throat, warms her stomach and spreads from there. She turns a surprised smile to Jethaniel. "You know about sailing too?" She's pleased. "Let's go sailing!" Her eyes are shining perhaps a bit too much. Does she mean now? A moonlight cruise? She's… likely forgotten that the sun has set. She's relaxed enough that her parental woes do not loom so large and thus the unfiltered, hastily-blurted and emphatic answer to her father's comment about Asher doing things for her wedding is, "Oh does she ever! But she's not doing Jethaniel!!" At the nearby tables a few heads turn. What? Was? That? And Darsce might further put her foot in her mouth, but Jethaniel puts it in a much more socially-appropriate way. At the kiss to her hair, she nods, smiles and snuggles back in. Are people staring? She isn't aware.

D'had is half-finished with Mur'dah's whiskey, held in one hand with the fingers loosely draped over the rim of the glass. His dark eyes grow approving with the knowledge the steward shows of sailing and his head rolls in a nod of easy agreement. "Get's rough there, yeah. If you beat to windward until the shoals, then run with the winds after, you get by." He's almost smiling - even with his daughter being kissed right in front of him - so he must at least be, if not completely won over, at least not outright disapproving. Darsce's outburst leaves him befuddled. "What?" This calls for more whiskey, and two long draughts finishes it. Then Jethaniel explains it and he nods and shrugs, "Ah. S'lotta work." He'll start on the whiskey Darsce didn't want, but before he does, "Lemme give ya some advice about women, son." The steward is now son? "Women're never happy unless yer miserable, they wanna boss ya but ya dun let 'em." And… there was something else, what was it? Oh! "What they don't know can't hurt 'em." There, marriage counseling complete?

"A little," Jethaniel replies to Darsce concerning sailing, though he returns her smile. He is - for the moment - aware of the limits of his knowledge. It is sufficient that he can - and does - nod with comprehension to D'had's comments, but not contribute significantly further to the discussion. His awareness of his own limitations is, however, prone to decrease with each sip he takes of his drink, and there are several accompanying those nods. As such, Darsce's suggestion that they go sailing receives a smile and another nod. "We shall." Tonight? That depends where they stumble after leaving here. Unaccompanied? That… depends how confident Jethaniel is at the point when he attempts it. The level of that confidence may vary inversely with the degree to which it is justified. Darsce's explanation is… accurate, though the things which Asher wishes to do are not for her daughter. They do not, in fact, involve her daughter to any significant degree. This is one of the problems with them. Jethaniel does not appear to notice the negative social consequences of Darsce's outburst, merely nodding his head in agreement before providing that explanation of his. A lot of work? He nods again. "But we'll do it. Together… we're doing it." Jethaniel turns his head to smile at Darsce in a fond and slightly glazed manner, then looks up to D'had. Advice? He nods, earnestly in his expression as he prepares to listen. The appellation used for Jethaniel may be taken as another indicator of D'had's lack of disapproval - though approval is significantly more difficult to obtain. There may also - if one is thinking critically - be some question of D'had's qualifications for giving advice on the subject of successful long-term interaction with women. Jethaniel - given his current state - listens attentively, though his forehead wrinkles with thought. Even with the fuzziness of his brain, it seems as though it's quite possible for him and Darsce to experience simultaneous happiness. He can recall - "But," he begins, a protestation as he attempts to gather thoughts that are proving somewhat evasive. D'had's concluding words of wisdom he finds easier to respond to. "Thass -" Presuming, of course, he is able to enunciate. He applies increased effort to the task. "That is dependent on the thing which… they don't know. Because some things require active… mitigations and… knowledge." He beams.

"Me too! I learned from my uncle and grandfather." Darsce's enthusiasm might be alcohol-fueled. She sailed alright, but knows… not much about it. Large schooners handle quite differently than smaller skiffs. And she watched more than she helped. But nevertheless, she is agreeable to…whenever. In fact, she's becoming more agreeable to… everything by the minute, her smile back to Jethaniel has become unfettered by the past - and present - stresses of the day. She's a little preoccupied mooning over Jethaniel's profile while D'had begins his 'advice' and let's face it, the wisdom of it is highly questionable seeing how he's failed numerous relationships. She tunes in halfway through, and corrects her father with a slightly incoherent drawl, "I don't want him miserable. I aim to please. Frequently!" And she gives a little giggle, nudges the man at her side with a shoulder.

D'had, finished expounding his words of advice (how to thoroughly wreck a relationship), lifts that third tumbler of whiskey, takes a draught, and swallows with barely a flicker of reaction. He frowns, trying to follow mitigations and…fails. "Huh?" He just shakes his head, rocking in his seat as the room goes spinning. "Sounds messy." His daughter gets an owlish look. Then a smirk. Then a frown, "Aim for after the weddin' Baby." She's too young to get married! He needs more to drink! (no, he doesn't really) And so he works on that whiskey while catching the eye of the 'tender and his chinlift says, 'Yo! Another round!'

Her uncle and grandfather… oh, yes. Jethaniel nods, watches Darsce for a moment, then smiles warmly as the thought connects in his head. "I'll meet them. I'm going to meet them." She wants him to! He's spent today meeting people for her, what's a few more? Besides, these ones are good people. Admittedly, Jethaniel's definition thereof is becoming rather more expansive at this particular moment. The world (or at least Darsce snuggled against his side) is warm and pleasant. D'had is friendly and helpful. Also incomprehending, but that… happens, sometimes. "See, you see… you can't know everything. That's Godel. But you can… know some things. And some things are better to know than others." Messy? Only if one fails to have - "Good aim." Jethaniel beams to Darsce, and leans his head to kiss… he's intending for her cheek. Or maybe her hair again. There's a certain wobble to the room that's causing difficulty with his own aim, though he certainly likes hers! Both before and after the wedding, but D'had's comment serves as, if not a disambiguation, at least a prompt. Also a reason to lift his head. "After the wedding we're going on a trip."

Yes, those are the good folk. That should actually be a pleasant encounter. Darsce's got no qualms about him meeting them - especially not after him saying he's sailed. He'll fit right in? Maybe? She's not really following the discussion between him and her father all that closely because there's a Jethaniel-smile for her and he's lowering his face to hers. She quite forgets her father to intercept the kiss. Oh! Was he aiming for her cheek? Whoops! Of messes, Darsce has no frame of reference - she has no complaints whatsoever about Jethaniel's aim. Of hers - here's where she could get herself into some real trouble with her father - she opens her mouth to reply - and Jethaniel's comment sidetracks it. "Where we goin'?" Is it supposed to be a surprise? She cannot remember. She doesn't need more to drink but continues sipping hers anyway because - how thoughtful that round is what they'd originally ordered - there's another pink lemonade with vodka just being set in front of her, so… it's the polite thing to do?

D'had is… drunk. No surprise there. He doesn't need that fresh tumbler the 'tender has just set in front of him either but he's taking it up anyway. And then he squints over it to Jethaniel. "Godel, who-what?" Even without whiskey he'd ask that, but he'll certainly agree to not knowing everything with a few bobs of his head. He growls at the kissing going on over there. "Just keep it in yer-" Someone walks by and jostles his arm, sloshing the whiskey in his glass and by the time he blinks back to the pair across the table, he's forgotten the warning on the tip of his tongue. "Yeah? Thash nishe." He's back to amiable and fast-approaching incomprehension. If he isn't already there.

The actual sailors will quickly discover that Jethaniel is (when not intoxicated) competent enough on a ship to know the limits of his competence, and quite willing to express that lack of expertise. They won't be sailing away with him at the helm, but it should nevertheless be pleasant. Jethaniel's explanation of Godel's theorum will, appropriately, remain incomplete. At this point, he and D'had might as well be having separate conversations that happen to share the occasional word, but he's not particularly worried about that. His further explanations… probably wouldn't help in the slightest, but he's planning to give them, just as soon as he gives Darsce this kiss. As so. Was Jethaniel aiming for something other than her lips? He can't imagine why; they're so nice, and quite distracting. He looks up to D'had again. Keep it… he can keep Darsce in his arms, how's that? Can he keep a secret about where they're going? Because, yes, it was supposed to be a surprise, but given that Jethaniel tilts back his glass to finish it and reach for the new one before answering… it may not remain so. "It ish nice," he agrees with D'had, nodding firmly, then turns his head to Darsce. "We… are going to see the stars." He says it like that explains everything. In his current fuzzy-brained state… it does.

They'll like him. And they're wholesome, hardy folk with an appetite for life, be it dangerous or placid. He might come away with a fresh repertoire of bawdy seamen's songs, sore muscles from the folk dances they pull him into but it should be pleasant. Darsce's lips move against his and she mmms in her throat - though the growl across the table recalls her. Oops? "…pants?" she supplies pertly for her old man, who is… busy telling someone to 'watch it buddy!' and so he doesn't hear her, which is likely just as well because present states of intoxication accounted for, the discussion resulting would be far more frank than socially acceptable. So instead she sips her next drink. She thinks she knows what seeing the stars means and she beams her approval at Jethaniel for his answer as to where they're going: they're going to bed.

D'had can keep a secret… if he remembers he's been told one. Right now though? He's forgotten he asked about Godel and so not having an explanation works for him perfectly. He nods about it being nice to his saying so. He's simply whiskey-agreeable right now, but don't push it you two! He nods about the stars and mumbles, "Can see 'em real niiiishe from the Vega Run." The name of the ship comes out slurred. And he's abruptly pushing up from the table with a purposeless motion, drink still in hand. "You kids be good," he says by way of goodnight, pats Darsce on the head and aims a rough clap for Jethaniel's shoulder.

It is fortunate that Jethaniel only has two hands and they're both occupied, because in his current state of mind, he is inclined to take Darsce's mention of pants as an invitation to check. However - given that he doesn't have a hand free to do so - he doesn't. He does have another sip of the drink which is contributing to a disregard for social acceptability qua itself and a general disinclination to consider consequences, then lowers the glass. His smile for Darsce's approval is a pleased one, though the trip to bed is not one that requires a great deal of planning - nor one that is, by any reasonable expectation, a surprise. Not after the wedding, anyhow! It is, at that point, somewhat to be expected. In the interim… distractions are a fortunate thing, because Jethaniel might well continue to answer questions. His answers might even be - some of them - coherent. "Yeah?" he says to D'had's comment on the Vega Run, and smiles. He also nods - several times, because he's not too sure about any of them. They will express a spirit of cooperation, and also agreement. It is - and he will be - good. At least for some definitions thereof, preferentially inclined toward Darsce's approval, but all that (in addition to being impolitic) is rather too complex for him to state just now, so he settles for, "Yeah." He adds one more nod, a firm one, as D'had's hand thumps his shoulder. "You… you have a goodnight."

Darsce's hands are free! Not that… she'd think to check Jethaniel’s pants for him. Her impulse to be smart-mouthed is, no thanks to the amount of alcohol currently circulating in her bloodstream (or rather the perfusion of it in her brain), not curbed by either judgment or her recent exercises in diplomatic phrasing. In her inebriated state she has forgotten whether Jethaniel has mentioned anything specific for that wedding trip, just that they are going…somewhere. So if it's supposed to be a surprise, since her mind has so naturally gone to the most obvious place (for her) where she's seen stars, she will be. Moreover she won't be disappointed when the time comes because she'll be with Jethaniel. She ducks at the pat to her head and promises D'had, "I try." Which will suffice to cover her father's intended meaning and satisfy him (what he doesn't know won't hurt him?) while giving her leeway to be very good indeed…to Jethaniel.

If D'had could think clearly enough to coherently form them, Jethaniel might continue to give answers to questions and the bluerider could continue to be muddled by the answers to them. But he's weaving off to destinations unknown (probably the latrine) with a, "Night," tossed casually in his wake.

Sometimes, the most diplomatic phrase is the one left unspoken. Darsce - according to Jethaniel - not only tries but succeeds. The details thereof are not specified. Neither have the ones of the trip, at least not in such detail as to distinguish them to an audience not already possessed of that knowledge. Tomorrow, Jethaniel may well be attempting to recall precisely how much he told Darsce - though it's hardly required to be a surprise. Tonight, as his thoughts drift in a haze of alcohol, he is unconcerned. As D'had departs, Jethaniel takes another sip of his drink, then sets it down. He turns his head to Darsce, and smiles warmly, trailing his fingers along her shoulder and then hugging her against him. "'m glad…" His head tilts down toward hers, experimenting with focal depth to see if it makes any significant difference to his perceptions along the way. It does not appear to, but given it brings him closer to Darsce and causes her to occupy more of his field of vision, he approves regardless. He was saying something, wasn't he? Something important and… relevant. Ah, yes! He beams. "…you're here."

Darsce blinks in the wake of D'had's sudden departure, turns her head so her iceblue eyes can better track his progress out. "…Bye… Papa…" she whispers, her lips quiver for a moment before she presses them shut. Tomorrow the details of this meeting will be fuzzy, but the overall impression will not be as unpleasant as the one was with Asher. Tomorrow she will likely not recall speaking of the trip at all. Tomorrow she's going to regret the two pink lemonades with vodka and the whiskey neat she drank. Tonight? She's feeling pretty damn fine. Save for… having no control over her brain or tongue or emotions. Emotions which are quicksilver to influences around her. Feeling arms around her, she turns her head fluidly back to Jethaniel as he draws her close, and she just… goes with it, her body pliant against his, a dreamy smile forming at his words. "Hmm, yeah. So're you. Let's be here… somewhere else." That makes sense, right?

To Jethaniel, at this moment… yes, sense is made. The concern that was starting to form for her expression fades with her smile. Figuring out the reason for it is unimportant, because Darsce is happy. "…there." He's pleased that he's come up with the word. "Let's be there." Where? He's uncertain of that, but ready to conduct the research necessary to find out. His glass is lifted once again and drained - something which he can regret in the morning, but which, for now, the sweetness convinces him is a perfectly acceptable idea - and slides out from the booth to wobble to his feet. Both of them; he does in fact have two, they're beneath him, and he is - if oscillating somewhat - substantively upright as he offers a hand to Darsce. It might be to help her up, or maybe because he could use the stability. He's… not entirely certain, himself.

Darsce's already finished her second- er third drink, so why's she still holding her empty glass? She turns her head to peer at it in bewilderment. It is set down and promptly forgotten. "I'm SO there," she quips and then snickers quietly, leaning forward to lightly kiss Jethaniel's cheek while he's draining his glass. She takes his hand, slides out of the booth and rather than pulling on his hand, uses her other to aid her upward motions. The room rocks and she wraps both arms around his waist. "Let me help you with there," she says with complete and utter sincerity as if she's the steady one. Ha! Where are they going? Hell if she knows! Just out of the noisy tavern. They can… lean on each other and maybe somehow manage to not fall down.

With there being defined as somewhere else than here. The logic is rather circular, but Jethaniel's not concerned by that at the moment. Darsce's statement is - obviously - an amusing one. If it were not, she would not sound so amused by it, and so he - because she does - laughs briefly. His fingers trail along her shoulder as she kisses his cheek, but then he's up and… so is she! It's probably a good thing she didn't pull, or else he might have fallen down on top of her. Instead, they're both upright - for now - and his arms wrap around her. "We're here, but we're going there," he explains earnestly. "So we leave here…" Insofar as a state defined as being that of the frame of reference can be left, since any location occupied by an entity will, for purposes of that entity, be the observed frame of reference. If, however, the point is to be fixed in time as well as space, then they are, in fact, going to leave the current here - the tavern - and go… elsewhere. Jethaniel has no particular certainty as to a destination. He hasn't thought that far ahead, because staying upright is a somewhat challenging endeavor. Perhaps his oscillation and Darsce's will dampen each other and result in a steadied path… at least some of the time. The rest, well, they can weave together and probably not actually fall down. "…until we get there." Which is…?

Logic? That's something Darsce isn't really going to be able to use much (any) of tonight. Here is where they'll be while going there and once they get there too, but Darsce isn't thinking of it that way. She's concentrating on holding Jethaniel up (ha!) and navigating the way to the door. So on out into the night and the clearing she goes. It's not late, she's not sleepy and she's restless enough to turn her steps away from the clearing and towards the beach. Didn't he mention sailing? Or D'had did. Or she might have. She's forgotten specifically. If not that, the night is warm and the stars are out. There are numerous activities they could engage there in whilst tipsy - just ask her!

There was some sailing mentioned, that much is certain. The night air is calm, once they get past the hubbub and outside. Did those drinks go on D'had's tab? If not, the bartender surely knows where to send the bill, so it's hardly something to concern themselves with just now. Not that Jethaniel's thinking about it. Not crashing into anyone's table, now that's something that requires his attention. Keeping close to Darsce… doesn't; he leans against her quite naturally. The occasional wobble, he takes as an opportunity to brush his lips wherever seems most convenient, and their destination is… apparently, the beach. If he'd given the question more thought, he'd probably be directing them to a bedroom - which one is rather up in the air - but, given that Darsce is possessed of an opinion concerning where they should go, he's quite pliable and willing to come along. He hasn't done so much walking today that his ankle is protesting the further effort, and so they make their slow way across the clearing and down the carved steps to where the waves roll up against the shore in a rhythm far more steady than their footsteps.

D'had slid the 'tender some coins here and there. Whether they were enough to cover the drinks totally… who knows? It's totally likely that given the suggestion coming from Jethaniel of a bedroom, Darsce'd have gone for it readily enough. Buuuut he didn't, so… The walk is more aimless than purposeful; she does more leaning than supporting though walking with both arms around him is pret-ty awkward given her tendency to meander rather than chart a straight course. She's paying more attention to those kisses dropped to her hair, tip of her nose, eyebrow - eyelid in one case - and trying to intercept one now and then than she is walking and her airy comments on the way aren't so much giggly or chattery as they are light. Yay booze? It's really a wonder they didn't tumble down those stairs rather than navigate them properly to cross the sands. And it's also probably far too calm for a sail, not that Darsce is cognizant enough of the lack winds tonight to stop her from heading them down the docks where the sailboats are moored. "Let's go out there," she says with a vague gesture to the dark, star-strewn waters while a skiff bobs conveniently at their feet.

Jethaniel is quite pleased to have those kisses intercepted, when Darsce decides to do so. He's also happy to have them land wherever else. Coordination and forward planning is not precisely his strong suit, at the moment. Neither is walking, but at least he doesn't fall down. Perhaps the kisses have utility in that they provide an opportunity for the world to stop swaying in between steps - not that it does, but it has the opportunity to do so. Despite its attempts to shake them, they do successfully make it down those stairs and across the beach to the docks. Jethaniel lowers his head, kissing at Darsce's shoulder, then lifts it again. His answers to her thus far - when he's given them - have been equally light. Sometimes they've been replaced entirely by touch; sometimes they've wandered as thoughts occur to him. Now, he looks out over the water, and smiles. "Out to the stars?" They're floating there, after all. The reflection on the surface is just as true a manifestation as anything else - it's the same light, generated ever so far away by physical reactions and refracted and reflected and transmitted all the way to Pern. It is a truer starlight even than the one on the bridge of the Yokohama, because for all those star-points are accurate, they are data gathered up by telescopes and projected on a screen. This light, here on the water, comes from the stars themselves, and Jethaniel watches those reflections with a pleased smile.

"Yes, out to the stars. A star-trip." Ah, so something has settled in her mind, but tomorrow, as the dawn's mist burns off with the rising sun, it'll most likely be gone in the fog that is the uncertainty of remembered pieces-parts of this evening's misadventure. Right now though, Darsce's feeling expansive, a touch euphoric and invincible. The craft at their feet is a light sailing craft, but it must be under repair or something for the mast lies folded down alongside the length of one of the gunwales. The canvas sail has been left in a heap atop the low cabin roof. Not That Darsce notices any of that. It's a sailboat! And so with a kiss that lands somewhere near Jethaniel's ear as he leaves one on her shoulder, she allows her arms to drop from his waist and steps… out into thin air with the depth misjudgment classic of the inebriated. She was aiming for the deck - it's a wee steeper of a step down than she thinks. Thump! In the darkness there's a snicker. "Oops?" She's landed in a heap atop that billowed canvas, leaving the craft rocking.

Sailors have navigated by the stars for many a turn. The Ancients navigated between the stars. Tonight, Darsce and Jethaniel… have… thus far managed to navigate! All the way to a starry shore. Jethaniel is pleased for the reciprocation of that kiss, and his hands trail down along her sides as she steps… out… and… where'd the Darsce go? His eyes widen as he reassures himself that, yes, object permanence is a thing, and while he heard a thud, he didn't hear a splash, and… that's about the point when his slow brain catches up to the sound of laughter. No need to worry, because Darsce is amused! "That," Jethaniel says as he lowers himself to a seat on the edge of the dock, "is not how you get to the stars." But he's amused by it, because Darsce is. His legs dangle over the edge and conduct depth-finding. "But," he lifts a hand, so earnest is his explanation, "You found gravity. It's that way." So he… follows her. It's somewhat more controlled of a fall, though with the ship still rocking, it's definitely a fall. He was barely managing to stay upright on solid land. Here? Jethaniel hasn't got a chance.

Yeah, Darsce isn't even trying to stand up. She's unfolded somewhat from that crumpled heap and is now sprawled in the canvas with her head tipped over the edge of the cabin looking at him where he's landed. He's upside down, oh well. She reaches a hand to him. "You need to fall up." Here with her. "Because I have the gravity." Her hand remains outstretched to guide him, her head tilts to scan the expanse overhead. Her focus is… not right. But that just means there are twice as many stars up there. "The moons aren't up yet and we can stargaze." There's another snicker and she offers, "Or we can just make out."

Jethaniel attempts to stand. He even succeeds… for a moment. He lurches his way toward Darsce, stumbling into the cabin and clinging to it. He laughs - because everything is more amusing than not, right now - and reaches for that hand, trailing his fingers up along the arm with a caress that follows, "Gravity… is a force of attraction." So yes, Darsce has it. "Between two bodies." Admittedly, in this particular circumstance, the pull of Pern greatly outdoes any actual gravitational forces acting between Darsce and Jethaniel. Metaphorically, however, that is what draws him up beside her. Non-metaphorically, it's his arms and legs and some undignified scrabbling that bring him up to the cabin roof, and his eyes are drawn by Darsce, not the distant gravities of the stars. "I'd rather look at you." The stars are fueled with hydrogen. Jethaniel's admission - and his grin - are fueled by alcohol.

Huh. Darsce's got nothing to do with that hand after his goes trailing up her arm but to slip it inside the neck of his shirt and tickle the skin underneath lightly with her fingertips. Her hand is probably more hindrance than help as he makes that scramble up to the cabin roof but she's smiling more at his words than his awkwardness. "I love it when you talk science to me," she says lowly with a suggestive lilt to her voice. The craft is rocking after all that movement but they are together and it's not an uncomfortable bed, actually. She lies there looking up at him with the starshine overhead reflected in her eyes, both arms lift to wend around his neck. "That makes two of us," she admits with a blithe candor that may not necessarily depend upon alcohol to say it but it certainly does something to her inhibitions. If… well yes, she actually has a few of those! The beach is deserted and the moons aren't out. It's VERY dark and they're under the stars. Jethaniel's stars? She… forgets they're not exactly in a room (even though they're lying atop one). "What would you like to see first?" The smile up at him is a touch seductive - and a lot giddy.

Those teasing fingers certainly provide Jethaniel with an incentive to climb the cabin. Not that he wasn't already quite motivated - and they do make his progress less efficient, between awkward angles and the distraction they cause - but he does not object in the slightest. "I would explain the world to you," he tells Darsce earnestly. He can't give it to her - he doesn't have it - but all of what he sees and knows, all the things he thinks… those, he can give her. Her arms drape around his neck, and Jethaniel is drawn closer, leaning in to press his lips to hers. He can give her kisses, too. Without the alcohol, he would still kiss her, might still have said those words, but they'd have been more measured. He'd have considered the situation before he said them, thought before he permitted himself to follow the impulse that has his lips pressing to hers. He wouldn't be trailing his fingers over her hip like that under these stars… but he is. The darkness and quiet convince him that they're alone, that this - a skiff bobbing at the dock - is an appropriate place… and the alcohol means he doesn't think twice about it. What does he want to see? He answers in between a series of kisses that trail back along her jaw. "You." It's… not a very helpful answer. If it weren't for the alcohol… it still might not be helpful, but it would likely be more verbose.

Darsce meant something quite different with her innuendo, but Jethaniel's earnest avowal captivates her on another level altogether. Her breath catches and she regards him with wide-eyed wonder and parted lips; lips that are found by his and a sweet poignancy, almost akin to pain wraps around her heart. "If you do, I will listen and try very hard to understand," she breathes when his mouth lifts from hers. Because she's tried for so many turns just to keep the world at bay and his wonder of it transcends that. The lack of verbose for her question of what he'd like to see is her loss, but right now actions are most welcome and she bids him, "Well then. Here I am?" However he takes that, it's certainly permission given to find whatever he'd like and have that look, but regardless, she'll be happy to tangle with him on this bobbing craft under those stars until sleep claims them before the chill dawn - and the inevitable mutual hangover - rouses them.

Perhaps Darsce intended the science applied to be more on the level of biology? Though there are physics involved as well, and there's certainly some chemistry. "I will," Jethaniel agrees, moving from hypothetical to certainty. His eyes, as they regard her, hold that same sense of curiosity and thought that is, for him, mingled with desire; the urge to explore and know and feel… everything, and most especially Darsce. He has other motivations as well - the simple enjoyment of sensation and touch, the urge to please her - but among them is his wonder, the joy of understanding, of engaging in a process which yields to analysis while remaining too complex to be comprehended in any realtime fashion. That which he could understand, which he seeks to understand, but which still surprises him. "I love you," he murmurs against her jaw, just below the ear. She is here; so is he. There will be more kisses, and gentle fingers unfastening and easing clothing so they can trail over bared skin, knowing by touch what he cannot, in the darkness or past eyes that close as he kisses her, see. Sleep… will probably come sooner than Jethaniel intends it. Blame the alcohol for that, too. He'll sleep here tangled up with her, and perhaps the chill of the night will wake them before fisherfolk coming to the docks do so.

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