The Most Treacherous Mud Pit

Xanadu Weyr - Meadow
A large, slightly rolling meadow is set high enough above the riverbank on both sides to avoid suffering from flooding, healthy ground cover and grass spreading out from either side of the dividing river. Scattered amongst the meadow are a variety of weyrs, each with a narrow path leading up to it from a main, winding road. Some are set under a few trees, while others sit by themselves. The meadow continues with gentle rolls and dips, grass tall and short waving in the slightest of breezes, and eventually those hills grow higher and steeper, ending in a large ridge that provides a fine view of that meadow and the rest of the Weyr, gazing out over the multicolored roofs of the houses and the cliff that holds the caverns.

Runner stables with the paddock beyond are to the south beyond the meadow weyrs, and a smithy and a woodcraft shop are settled closer in towards the path to the clearing. Trees border the northern side of the meadow, and more of those low, rolling hills can be seen to the northwest. A road passes through the meadow, coming from the east and used by traders and crafters alike. Wagons laden with felled trees from the forests or ore from the mountains are hauled by burden beast up the road through the meadow, over the bridge spanning the river to be processed in the appropriate workshops.

It's another brilliantly sunny summer afternoon in Xanadu, just like the day before and the day before that. And yet… there is still strangely a giant mud pit smack in the middle of the meadow, although conveniently out of the way of the footpaths. It might be hard to actually see the giant puddle itself since it's currently occupied by one very, very large dragon. All the muck covering her might hide the tawny gold, but no mistaken Inasyth just on size alone. Or the fact that there's a flood of sparkly champagne bubbles towards any candidates in the nearby vicinity. « HELP! HELP!!! I'VE FALLEN AND I CAN'T GET UP!!! » The bubble waves pop and fizzle merrily and in no way match the DIRE NATURE of those words… and also, there seems to be a strange lack of any dragons swooping down to the rescue.

When did it rain? Maybe it's just very moist heat, and the mud has nowhere to evaporate and nowhere to drain. Ajral was just walking from point A to point B like an innocent Healer-candidate going from a task to a lack-of-task when that familiar mindvoice nags at the back of her head … and then screams right into it. At least Inasyth is polite enough for a preamble! Some of the candidates are new enough they don't have Ajral's advantage of knowing this particular dragon well — which is why as soon as she steps into view she's tilting her head like a bird and looking … maybe a little suspicious but also a little concerned. "Where's your smaller half?" Please note that normally she does not talk directly to dragons and expect answers on the regular. Just this dragon.

It's probably not the call for help that brings Shiloh to the meadow. He was probably headed that way to begin with. In fact, he might have kept right on going (or done an abrupt about-face at the sight of such a muddy mess) were it not for the champagne bubbles and the cry for help. Even if it's probably not Shiloh's bleeding heart that breaks for the call. No, what leads him to the queen in the puddle is probably not his own desire to help, but Averil's. Hand in hand, he lets himself he led toward Inasyth because while Shy would probably be just fine leaving the dragon to her non-distress, Avi probably would not.

Want to know who else is tilting her head like a massive predatory bird? Kihatsuth. She’s settled somewhere nearby, keenly observing the unfolding events while not even so much as lifting a wickedly curved talon to help! How rude. But where’s the fun in that? And the mental call of assistance wasn’t directed at her so she’s just going to play at blissful ignorance! How is she to know that Inasyth isn’t just mud bathing? It IS good for the hide~ And where’s Ru’ien? Might be for the better that he isn’t present, right now. Even if the greenrider would be getting a good laugh from the whole thing!

Averil could not, for the life of him, say what he expected to find in the meadow. Nor, for that matter, could he really put a finger on what he thought he could do about it. Still, he's jogging along at Shiloh's side, his free hand raised to twist his thick fall of golden hair into a knot at the back of his head and his expression more then a little curious. "It could be serious," he murmurs. It's probably NOT serious.. But it MIGHT be serious. It's the sight of the dragon floundering in a mud wallow that has his steps slowing, pale grey eyes slanting a glance up to Shiloh's face. "I really need to think about wearing pants more often." Course, the fact that he is probably smaller then Inasyth's head has him balking a bit, his brows arching mildly as he lightly clears his throat and makes a point to skip his gaze away from the beastcrafters. "They like mud wallows, don't they?" Sure they do! It's only belatedly that he notes Kihatsuth and immediately smiles and waves toward the massive predatory green. "That's Ru'ien's lifemate." Cause focusing /there/ is much better then contemplating all that mud.

Inasyth clearly couldn't miss her little sister over in the corner and takes a break from lolling in the mud to raise her head over towards the green. « Shhhhhh… don't let them know I'm F-A-K-I-N-G!!! » the literal drama queen stage whispers mentally, before she flops back down, eyes whirling innocently up at Ajral and her direct question that the dragon had not exactly planned for. « She's uhhhhh… trapped to. In the office. Paperwork avalanche. But uhhh… F'yr and R'hyn are digging them out. » Sure, the big bronzeriders must be useful at digging through non-existant paper pile collapses. She inches her massive head closer towards Averil and Shiloh, almost close enough to boop the harper-candidate if he stands still. « Sure, we like mud wallows. But this is no ordinary mud wallow! It's treacherous!!! And I'm trapped. Clearly. » She says so, so she is, right?

This is totally believable so even if it is in fact a total lie, Ajral is rolling with it. Inasyth being an extension of the person who is probably her closest friend Ki'lian does not count as a friend means that she's going to go along with this regardless of what the situation actually is, and it might be bad! There might be an actual injury here! "That sounds very dangerous indeed," Ajral says calmly, sagelike, complete with a single nod. She is the adult here (we need an adultier adult, stat) and is going to COORDINATE. Um. She looks from Averil to Shiloh to Kihatsuth and then back at the other candidates, "Mud can be kind of … sinky. And have a pull from the bottom. So it looks like we get to figure out how to pull a gold out of mud. Who's good at physics?" The stablehand must be good at physics, right?

Shiloh could not look less impressed if he tried. But at least he doesn't look surprised? Apparently, he's reached that point of 'nothing in Xanadu surprises him anymore'. But the longsuffering look lands on Averil rather than the 'trapped' queen in the mud. "Faking." He definitely caught that word, though he doesn't seem terribly surprised by it. Sorry Ina. Shiloh was apparently not buying the act. The sweet-talking Ajral gets a look as well, a little tightening of dark eyes and maybe a curious frown, before he deems her harmless. And hey. Maybe she'll fix this little mud-mess so he doesn't have to get dirty? No? Drat. "Sinky?" An eyebrow lofts for the description. One hand lifts. Rubs at his face. "Well. If we can get a belly rope around her—" which he clearly finds a dubious prospect with that look that lands on the queen, "Maybe she," head-nod toward the observing Kihatsuth, "can help roll her out. Prolly work better that way, rather'n trying to just… pull up." Rolling. Through the mud. "Or she can prolly just… stand up."

Giant mud-soaked heads are booping him and Averil can't help but laugh at that. The sound, though, is quiet and warm and coupled with his attention sweeping right back to the 'damsel in distress'. "Clearly treacherous," he agrees in conciliatory tones. It's the mention of physics that has the little (Ickle bickle, OKAY) artist sweeping his gaze up to Arjal. "Physics?" No. Not even a miniscule chance there. And really, he doesn't want to think about anything pulling at the gold's bottom, particularly when that thing is lurking under the mud. "We could… push?" No, Avi. NO. If that mud is deep enough for Inasyth to actually hunker down? It is definitely over Avi's head. Sweeping his gaze up to Shiloh, his eyes widen at the word faking, his chin dipping in a slow nod of accord. BUT, what can you do? Stand up. That is what you can do. Logic, it works. But still. "That would have to be a really loooong rope," he admits. There's a lot of belly over there.

LITTLE? How insulting! … even if technically correct! Kihatsuth provides nothing short of a wicked mental grin and a little implied wink. She’s got your back, Inasyth! If only because she’s going to reap the benefits of indulging and sowing further chaos entertainment~ What’s there to lose? For effect, she’ll give a little dismayed croon. Oh, whatever shall they do? By THEY, she means the Candidates, because listen… she’s not moving. Woe! Such tragedy! Her break in ‘character’ comes as she’s recognized, though liable to have already forgot who Averil is exactly or that she Searched him (Ru’ien’s absence means she is not prompted). Any attention however is soaked up like a sponge and the wave receives a little posturing and ruffle of wings. Hello, dearie~ Everyone ignore the clicking of those talons. Shiloh’s suggestion earns an abrupt scoff-snort from the green. « Me? » Her voice reaches out in velvet tones, not quite maiden or crone and some lyrical in-between. « Oh, I couldn’t possibly—» She laments, in false dismay. « — I would only hurt my beloved sister. » Pout.

The mud puddle seems like it only comes up a few feet, barely making a dent on covering the gold's sides. She could surely stand up, but where's the fun in that? « Leirith claims you are the most badass minions… I think you might be the cleverest as well! » Inasyth attempts to add on a little flattery, especially when Shiloh seems a bit reluctant to help with this giant (INGENIUS) problem she's created for them. « Rope… rope is good. Think I can free my talons enough to grab at it. For your pulling or pushing. But I hear Kihatsuth just filed her talons this morning, so way too sharp for helping! » She's got your back for having her back, Kiha.

"Yes, I think grabbing would be wise." Ajral hates being the adult, have we mentioned this yet? She's likely the oldest of the entire candidate class as well as the most experienced, and it puts her in this awkward situation of knowing what she's doing and appearing to know what's going on. At least Averil and Shiloh aren't actually looking to her for direction like some of the younger ones. Because even if she knows Inasyth, she's not going to have great luck at predicting what's happening next, and this is … definitely very new territory. "And then pulling, we're just … adding leverage for sliding, since three humans can't really move a dragon's weight that easily, but if the mud's slippery and …" She's pacing slightly, a couple steps one way and then one or two back the other way to think, something one should never ever do in an operating room but which is completely fine when planning a research protocol or a treatment or — removing a dragon from mud. "The reason behind doing it doesn't really matter," she adds gently, lest the others think she's an idiot: "the point is that we have to do it regardless. But I think that grasping means we don't have to do any tying. Where's the place most likely to find the biggest rope …" Where's Lyubomir, he would know that one! Shiloh gets a hopeful look, since she thinks she's seen him around the runners, and usually stables have fairly strong ropes. "If we're careful we won't even slip," is murmured, because she's wearing light beige and doesn't really want to end up in the mud either, but she also should have learned not to do that so much.

Shiloh has probably spent many a turn pulling cows from mud puddles. This is a wee bit different, seeing as it's a giant dragon and not a (comparatively, at least) small cow. The beastcrafter just sighs, because apparently he's not buying this catastrophe as anything other than a fun game (or a prank. Maybe both). A side-long look to Kiha says 'really?!' in all the longsuffering disbelief that is not in his voice. Because he's not yet speaking. A level look lands on Ajral, an eyebrow arched as he wonders flatly, "Why?" Why do they have to try, exactly? It's not that he's trying to be a killjoy. He's just… maybe not enthused about the idea of trying to pull a gold dragon from a puddle of mud. A groan and a rub of his hand over his face (because this is gonna happen whether he wants it to or not) and he decides, "There's rope at the stables. If we had time, we could braid a few together to make it… easier to grasp." Little bitty rope in a giant dragon paw. It might be long enough, but the diameters not ideal. "Or maybe try the docks. Boats have thick ropes." But how're they gonna get it here? Another look at Kihatsuth before Shiloh dismisses the idea of attempting to ask for her help again. A puff of cheeks and a long exhale. "Okay. Pick one — Ma'am," That's for Inasyth. "You think you can hold a thin rope?" If yes? There'll be a slant of a gaze at Avi in a 'go get it' fashion. If not? Well. They'll figure something out.

"Hello," Averil offers belatedly to Arjal, his gaze flicking toward her face as he affords her a polite inclination of his head. He's seen her, of course, but he's not entirely certain of her name. Course, as she goes on, his expression becomes more and more dubious, his free hand drifting down to smooth over his skirt. It's doomed and that is becoming more and more clear by the second. And, for a moment, his mouth opens with every intention of pointing out that it is unlikely that he could push Arjal out of the mud, let alone, a dragon.. Even with rope. "Right." Because they have to do it. WHY? WHY IS THAT A THING THAT IS HAPPENING? Drawing in a slow breath, he glances between Shiloh (Who has clearly decided to play the game) and Arjal before dipping his chin in a shallow little nod at the slant of Shiloh's eyes. "I'll be right back." The reassurance is offered to.. Well, in this case, Inasyth with a reassuring little smile. And then he's off, skirts hoisted up around his knees as he runs off toward the stables.

« Such clever minds! » Kihatsuth readily agrees with the flattering compliments, even if her voice carries the hidden undercurrent of a smirk that says otherwise according to this green. Given her mercurial personality, she’s liable to sweeten them in one breath and then threaten to tear them asunder in the next — which won’t do at all! So she’ll play one role, less someone erroneously push a little too hard and her resolve briefly snap. « My dear sister is right again~ If I tried to help even with the rope, why — just one slip of my talon? » For emphasis, she physically makes a hooking cutting motion with the smallest of her fingers. SNIP! « And what if I nicked one you delightful and oh-so helpful Candidates? » More like sever a limb. Anyone wanting to volunteer for some wickedly life-threatening deep cuts? No? Tsk. « I would never forgive myself! » She would weep! How terrible! UNFORGIVABLE~ Shiloh’s dismissal earns a rolling guttural sound from Kihatsuth … which sounds unnervingly like laughter. Of the almost-sinister kind. Oh, she’s watching you now, boy!

Inasyth is certainly bigger than a herdbeast (since she eats so many of them and grew big and strong), but she is less likely to kick any human in the head or even the shins, so that's at least a plus in this situation! As a plan starts to form, whatever the plan might be, she eagerly bobbles her head along. « Good! Good! I knew you could come up with something! And yes, I think I can grab a rope. Or wrap it around my talons. » The gold holds up her own tawny talons, not quite as needle sharp as Kihatsuth's, but still impressive.

As if realizing she's been rude, Ajral offers a wave back for Averil; "Hi. Sorry, I'm Ajral, I'm used to just kind of stepping in and directing — " There's a little bit of a shy-apologetic smile as she gestures to the dual-knot display she's got going on. "— when no one else is. And as for why, I hate to say because, but … because she's a gold and we're wearing white knots, so we have to do it." It's kind of the same thing as 'so there' but without such a firm conclusion! "If we need more time, I'm not sure we're in a terrible hurry, but the stable ropes will hopefully work. I don't know I want to liberate ship ropes." She knows a couple of people with boats, but if she's not borrowing supplies from them, it becomes weird. "Even temporarily. But you're a hero for sure," she's informing Averil as he departs, because he's going to go get the stuff and that means she doesn't have to. There's a lifting of her foot to inspect the heel of her boot now and yes, it's been sinking into the ground a little. Excellent. At least it's just the shoes so far …

Now that things are underway for Operation: Rescue Inasyth, Kihatsuth’s interest in the whole affair is waning. Which is always not good concerning the green, because that usually means she is starting to consider ways of peppering things with a pinch of chaos randomness. Can’t have things too mundane or linear, after all! Inasyth’s unintentional mud-slinging does curb that temptation for a little longer, but eventually the green is simply done. « Good luck! » she crows, with an implied toothy —terrifying— grin. « And don’t let our poor Inasyth down, Candidates~ I’d hate to see what would happen. » But they have this in the bag, right? With another peel of cackling mental laughter, Kihatsuth suddenly lurches forwards and, eerily graceful for a big green, launches skywards. If the mud happens to be disturbed in her wake, surely that was by accident~ Surely.

Ajral definitely just got splashed a second time. THANKS, KIHA.

Getting back from the stables takes a bit longer then getting to the stables. And what returns looks more like a rope monster then an Averil. Why? Because Inasyth is a LOT of dragon. And a LOT of dragon is going to require a LOT of rope. To his credit, he's also taken the time to slip on a pair of shorts under his skirt, a fact that becomes clear when the rope is dumped on the ground and he is immediately slipping out of the skirt. "Your apprentices think I'm crazy," he asides to Shiloh as he folds up his skirt and sets it carefully out of the way. Dropping down to the grass, he pulls off his own boots, exhaling a gusty sigh at the sight of the wallow-trapped-but-not-really dragon. Sure, there is mud spattering everywhere, but that is just the way it is. "What's the plan," he asks curiously as he glances around the group.

"I've been here two turns," comes in dry reply to the idea that this is 'how things are done here'. It can be assumed that, based on tone alone, this is the first Shiloh is hearing about it. But there is a job to be done — a muddy one — and Shiloh might not like it, but he's going to do it. The candidate-bubble-sketch at least gets a bark of laughter, and Inasyth is granted a look that might almost be a smile. Almost. If he just tried a little harder it could be. "Thanks for that," is offered as he shoves himself to his (bare) feet, boots tossed somewhere safe. "An' thanks for that, too," comes with the splash of mud courtesy of Kihatsuth's exit. At least he doesn't have to worry about getting dirty, now? Since he already is? With Avi's return there's another faint little almost-smile, amusement for the rope-monster that is the artist. "Ought to be glad you didn't rope 'em into helping." THAT MIGHT HAVE BEEN PUN-INTENDED. "Right. Well. Toss the rope. She grabs it," she, being Inasyth no doubt, "And then we pull." And… probably slip and slide in the mud.

« WE DON'T NEED LUCK! WE HAVE BADASSESS!!! » Inasyth crows out as her sister departs. Someone may have been visiting Leirith a bit too much on the Sands lately. « And you're not moving or I'll cry. » Sinkholes or not. Lack of tear ducts or not. She would find a way! As even more mud gets flinged, she lets out a delighted croon. « Look. We match now! » And when the rope appears, she'll wiggle her talons towards the candidates. Not like she can wrap that tiny rope around the herself. Manual dexterity is not a giant dragon's forte.

"And stood how many times," is playful, from Ajral; she isn't trying to argue with you, Shiloh, honest! It's just the white knot thing. And another moment in which she is not sure why she agreed to doing such a thing for the seventh time. Seventh. Time. And this is the time she's going to basically be playing tug-of-war and falling on ass or face into mud almost unavoidably. "Good plan," she agrees, not arguing at all when someone else makes the establishing calls. She isn't a surgeon, after all. "We all pull at the same time, so we are … less likely … to fall." Which is definitely not not falling. "Then I suppose everyone gets a bath."

"It's a lovely shade of brown," which is sort of an agreement that they match. Even if the only matching bit is the mud. Shiloh eyes Inasyth, then the rope, then the queen again. "Hmm," comes at some internal thought, before he's deciding, "I'm gonna wade out to give it to you. May hafta wrap it around your… talon a few times." Cause really, this is gonna be interesting. A look at Ajral says Shiloh's pretty much certain that not-falling is a lost cause. He might not do math (actually, he does. A rather lot of it) but it doesn't take much to realize this is only happening with the queen's consent. Three humans against a dragon? Yeeeeeah. "Avi, I want you at the front. Then… Ajral," the name coming a moment behind as he recalls it, "And then me. After I get the rope to her." Does he know Inasyth's name? He should. He's met her at least once, even if it was two turns ago now. A grimace and he goes squelching through the mud, plodding through like it's no big deal (prolly cause he's already filthy) to pause at that great paw and wonder, "S'it okay if I tie this on you?" because manners or something.

Averil glances between Shiloh and Arjal, his teeth worrying at his lip before he pushes to his feet and eyes the rope, the dragon, the mud, everything. He is under no delusions that he will be at all helpful in the pulling end of things, but he's willing to try. "Okay," is uttered in the wake of Shiloh's instructions. Course, the moment that Shiloh moves, he's carefully picking his way through the very slippery mud, skating and pinwheeling a few times before he finds his foot (Sort of) and picks up the end of the rope. "I'm so glad I left my satchel at home," he murmurs quietly. Having his art supplies destroyed by mud would be devastating. Course, he's watching Shiloh as he moves toward the dragon.

Normally three people trying to move a dragon wouldn't stand a chance, but Inasyth is making this all up as she goes along so there might be a very good chance that enough of a good-faith effort could persuade her to give them a victory. She stands very still as Shiloh steps forward with the rope, front talons outstretched. « Why of course! » She can always appreciate some good manners and if wrapping up her talons is how they plan to get her out, she's happy to go along!

"Usually a good idea not to carry around anything you're concerned about the continued existence of, as a candidate, yeah," Ajral agrees. Maybe she should have tried candidacy in High Reaches instead? Maybe it would be less weird? Except that she lived there for fourteen turns and it was primarily just boring. At least Xanadu is always interesting. "Strange tasks popping up all the time. Not that this is strange. No. This is just a — dragon distress call. Completely ordinary." The sarcasm drips strong in her. She takes the place she's been directed on the rope as soon as it's ready and waits for the determination to pull, though there's some slip-sliding around in the mud to accomplish that. Hair: ruined temporarily. Shirt: stained. Somehow her pants have gone unmarred so far, but that's about to be measured in minutes.

"Appreciate it," comes with an honest-to-Faranth tip of his hat to Inasyth before he's moving to wrap the rope around her paw. "Should help you hold on," is explained for… probably no reason at all. Maybe just to satisfy Shiloh's own mind as to why he's doing this. "If you need to let go, you can wiggle your paw and the rope should slide out." Not that he thinks it's likely that three humans are going to be able to hurt her, but just in case. "Alright. Hold tight. We'll getcha out." Even if Shy is pretty sure Inasyth can get herself outta there. He'll at least play along, saving the sighs and wry looks for later. Wading back toward the other end of the rope, he takes up a spot behind Ajral, does his best to set his feet so he's balanced and braced (in the mud!), takes a breath and prepares to meet his doom. "Okay. Pull!"

Averil blinks once, his brows arching as he slants a glance back at Ajral. "I'm an artist, that has not changed with being a candidate," And from the very stubborn set of his jaw, it is not going to. Regarding her for a long moment, he finally gives a mild shake of his head before turning his attention back to the rope and Inasyth on the other end of it. "If it hurts, at all, when we pull, you'll let us know?" The question, directed to Inasyth is uttered in gentle tones that hold a measure of real concern for the possibility of causing harm. The moment Shiloh is out of the mud and moving into position, Avi is wrapping the rope around his arm and digging in with his heels. The /second/ the order is given? He pulls. Sadly, his pulling results in nothing more then his legs slipping out from under him so that he ends up dangling from the rope while slip-sliding in the mud in an attempt to get his feet back under him.

And Ajral is not having much better luck. Perhaps Inasyth should have specifically ordered strong candidates, not just intelligent crafters who coincidentally showed up, two of whom evidently do not have the upper arm strength of the third. The jaded burnout princess says, "Nor should it," easily able to relate — this is the other good part about Xanadu, nobody having to give up craft duties — and … not easily able to pull that hard on a dragon. Her concern for actually yanking out Inasyth's talon lasts for about a half second, because she quickly goes from pulling to sliding and barely manages to not crash into Averil, letting out a long yelping sound until the sliding part is over. But she has not let go of the rope. Nor is she actually on the ground entirely, she's still on her feet, she just had to fight for that! And yeah, those pants? Splattered.

Rescue mission quite quickly goes to tug of war as Inasyth helpfully tugs back on the rope the candidates are using to try and haul her out. All very nearly 45 meters of her. Whether candidates go flying with it, the rope is certainly flying in towards the mud pit and she just lets out a little « Ooops! » Maybe that was a genuine accident.

LOOK. LISTEN. Shiloh really didn't think three humans were gonna be able to haul out a full-grown gold from the mud pit. He probably expected a bit of (attempted) pulling. Some slipping. Definitely Averil sliding around. Maybe Ajral sliding around. Also probably himself sliding around. He probably expected they would all end up in the mud at some point, despite his very best intentions to keep himself upright. He was not expecting Inasyth to tug back on the rope. RIP candidates. He might as well be a feather compared to forty-five meters of full-grown dragon for all the resistance he manages in the face of that tug. He's off his feet in a moment, colliding with Ajral (who might be colliding with Avi) and then with the mud. TIMMMMMBERRRRRR… splat.

In retrospect, wrapping the rope around his arm was probably not the smartest thing Averil could have done. Coupled with slippery mud and weighing shockingly little? Recipe for disaster. A recipe that is liberally spiced with Inasyth's tug. With the rope suddenly going slack behind him (Due to Shiloh, and Ajral slipping forward) Avi goes down with a startled shriek, the sound muffled by the spatter of mud as he finds himself in the pit (no doubt with the others) and blinking up at the dragon through a curtain of mud. THIS WAS NOT THE PLAN. And if it WAS the plan, no one told Avi. "…. hullo," is spluttered to the gold he finally surfaces from the slimey, eewwwy gooey mess of yuck. /Hey/, what would YOU say.

Where this goes is exactly as expected: as Shiloh collides with Ajral, the end of Ajral's tentative footing is done for. It was probably gone anyway, but that was the — probably anticipated — death knell of it and now there's just a pile of muddy candidates with a rope tied to a dragon's talon. Because no one was expecting the twist! Possibly not even Inasyth, as Ajral's willing to give her that it might be a genuine accident. But she's also wiping mud out of her face with muddy hands like that's going to help. "That," she splutters quietly, "isn't actually what I thought would happen." Squelch squelch.

Inasyth probably has less understanding of physics than any of the candidates and also a tendency to underestimate her own strength. She does at least look very, very guilty as she hovers her head over towards the trio that so recently went flying. « It is a very treacherous mud pit. » Sure… blame it all on the mud.

At least Shiloh was kinda dressed for this? (cause he's always dressed to get dirty; it's basically a requirement when one works with runners). But that doesn't mean he enjoys being covered in mud. Shoving up to sitting, there's a likewise futile attempt to rid his face of mud with muddy hands that results in little more than smearing it around a bit. But at least he can see now? Blink-blink. Squint. Right on over to Ajral. "How'd you think it was gonna go?" is wondered dryly as Shiloh tries to find a place to wipe his hands and fails. "You okay?" The question is for both healer and artist, though Shiloh doesn't seem terribly worried about either of them given they're talking and stuff. "The most treacherous," he drawls in agreement, slanting a look up at Inasyth. It at least has a bit of a smirk, even if that amusement leans a little toward being at his own expense.

"Very." Avi's response is breathed as he sits up and wipes mud off his face (Or attempts to and fails), globbets of mud flung to the left and right as he attempts to shake the excess off his hands. "This would be fine if I were a sculptor," is murmured under his breath. Still, he's attempting to get his hands under himself and push up to his knees. An attempt that has him slipping and sliding and landing right back on his back with a wet sounding splat. OKAY. FINE. That's /FINE/. It's Shiloh's question that has him twisting around onto his hands and knees and very, very gingerly crawling (slipslidingonhisbelly is more accurate) toward the beastcrafter. Course, there are numerous impressions of a baby deer on ice occuring before he finally gives up and flops. A moment later, laughter is bubbling up, the sound growing in volume as he stretches his arms out and just accepts his fate.

Now that one person is laughing, there's no hope for Ajral. As soon as Avi starts in on it, Ajral loses the last of her tenuous grip on the hysterical giggle that threatened to burst forth and starts giggling as well. She does not lie down in the mud, even if she's tempted by that as well — there's a glance t the ground before instead she just pulls herself up into a real sitting position (standing is not to be approached yet) and tries to answer questions: "I — didn't think we would end up quite so — I mean, I expected there would be some sliding but the tragic pile of failure — " There's another brief descent into airy giggles. "I am fine though. Just very dirty. And not sure Inasyth won't have to help us get up." Because she can actually just stand up, and they might keep slipping. "Freeing us from the treachery that absorbed us when we attempted to battle it. I believe that's how Leirith would put it."

That big golden head seems to be looming very curiously as Inasyth waits to hear the answers about everybody being okay, wings flaring out a little bit looking oddly like a very large, very muddy mother hen. Averil's innovation in locomotion gets a rumble of laughter, loud enough to vibrate through the mud pit they're all in. « oooooh… I can do that! Since you've all so bravely fought the mud, you can hang on to me and by THE POWER OF TEAMWORK we'll work our way free!!! » Although hanging on might be safer for climbing on if the gold is going to wiggle any.

Shiloh just sits, legs half splayed and knees bent, arms resting atop. Like he's having a picnic in the mud. There's a droll smile for Averil's laughing, and the belly-wiggling gets a snort and a choke of his own before he manages to tame it. "Well. I figured this is how it'd be." Maybe not how they would get there, but he definitely figured they'd end up in the mud. Or at least, covered in it. "Good idea," he agrees. "Could probably just crawl out but. Maybe better if she hauls us instead." He's not sure how teamwork is gonna come into it, but he'll go along with it. "Just tell me where I'm supposed to grab," he adds, eyeing the muddy mother-hen even as he's reaching over to try and snag Averil from his belly-flop.

Averil exhales a spluttering little yelp as he's snagged and hauled up, a little flail given before he's flinging his arms around Shiloh's neck and clinging. Apparently, he's chosen his spot to grab. "Sorry," is murmured as he drags himself up to his knees with Shiloh's help. Mind you, he's not sorry, not in the least. "I need a bath." They /all/ need a bath, but that's not on Averil's mind at the moment. "Dontletmefall," is whispered as he slips again and tightens his hold on the beastcrafter. Free? Free would be great! Yes, please, thank you.

"I figured baths would happen at the end," Ajral agrees, the giggles still coming periodically, but she gives Inasyth a grateful look. Some of the stress oozes out of her shoulders again — or is that the shoulder-shaking from laughter? "Thank you, Inasyth, that's very kind," is at least genuine; she's pleased enough to be getting a lift back out again and is glad that part of her suggestion cascade at least actually worked. "I did expect to get muddy but maybe not unable to get up levels of muddy. When did it even rain?" This mud is possibly haunting them. She's picking part of Inasyth's foreleg that looks promising to grasp, enough room left for the others to join in and pick the same paw if it so desires them.

Considering the size of the young queen, forelegs are probably the most easily accesible part of her, especially without riding straps, plus it lets her kinda scoop the candidates up in a little protective bubble as she starts to wiggle. « Okay. Teamwork! Sing on the top of you lungs as we go! » Music powers her, or something. Inasyth doesn't really specify what songs they should sing before she starts bursting into one of her own that she heard swimming close to the docks recently. « WHAT SHALL WE DO WITH A DRUNKEN SAILOR? WHAT SHALL WE DO WITH A DRUNKEN SAILOR? WHAT SHALL WE DO WITH A DRUNKEN SAI- Oh look, ground! »

Sing? "Whut?" Shiloh looks more frightened by this prospect than he does being scooped up by the gold. Perhaps it's for the best that the trip is somewhat swift, and he can pretend that he had every intention of singing (should he be asked) but just couldn't figure out what song before they were down. Darn. Also, bless the ground for coming so quickly! Shy's not so sure he wants to know what they should do with a drunken sailor. With solid land beneath them once again, Shiloh releases his hold and lets himself sprawl once more. This time, at least, the only mud is what's clinging to him. "Thanks," comes for Inasyth, along with a little tip of his (woefully also muddy) hat. "Preciate that." He'll haul himself up and head for the baths in short order. Right now, he's just gonna be glad the gold (and they) are rescued from the mud.

Averil can't help laughing at Inasyth's song choice, murmuring "Shave his belly with a rusty razor," under his breath before catching himself and snapping his lips shut. It is only when they are safe (relatively) on dry ground that he exhales a breath and attempts wipe still more mud out of his eyes. "Yes, thank you for the timely rescue." In hte wake of the words, he rolls onto his back on the grass, his head lolling to the side as he slants a glance at Shiloh and smiles. "Baths." Definitely a requirment. A requirement that has him pushing up and reaching for his skirt and Shiloh's boots while bidding farewell to the other mudmonsters on the grass. Eventually, presumably, everyone will make their way to their own versions of getting cleaned up and continueing on with their day. Avi's is definately going to be coupled with singing 'Drunken Sailor' in his head. It's just one of those tunes.

Add a New Comment
Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 License