Drunk Men Can't Dance

Balen Hold – Gather Grounds

It’s early Spring here in the High Reaches area and the trees are just putting out their tender leaves, flowers are blooming and it’s Gather season. Out in the fields surrounding the Hold, trader’s tents and booths have been erected, all set up around a square. Tables and chairs, drink and food concessions at the perimeter and in the center, a wooden dance floor has been fitted together with a raised platform in the center for the harpers.

Fall has come to Xanadu and with it a little less hectic pace. With Western Weyr's flooding well past, G'ene has at last allowed the extra duties of the Search and Rescue wing to abate, now that their part in supporting the sister Weyr's efforts to find refugees is over. It doesn't mean he isn't keeping people plenty busy, though, with those firestone drills and extra sweeps. Even so, restdays are allowed and today is one of them. So it is that Thea has managed to wheedle D'had into leaving the comfort of the couch or beach or… was it bed? Anyhow here they are in Balen Hold wandering the gather, enjoying the fine weather, the music… At least Thea is enjoying it, all dressed up and ready to dance when evening comes, which looks to be an hour away. She's been trying to edge Donn closer to the dance square for some time now.

D'had is content enough to be out of the Weyr for awhile at least. Shopping isn't really his thing either, but he's put up with it rather well today. Then again he hasn't let her buy anything without at least trying to haggle the price, and if it didn't move as much as he thought it should, well then he probably wasn't letting her buy it if he could manage. He's not exactly dressed up, but he has worn one of his nicer shirts and a good set of leathers.

Thea is following D'had with a thoughtful expression on the man's back, er, side. Not to be critical - he's a manly dude in his leathers and Thea can appreciate the way it- He looks real nice! But the woman is thinking aloud when she lifts her gaze from his… leathers and says, brightly encouraging, "We should find you something nice to wear. Ooh, there's a clothier's stall. And I have some commissions from my weaving." What has he bought her, by the way?

D'had turns a glance towards her at that comment, eyes narrowing. "This looks fine," he replies before turning back to pay a bit more attention to where they're walking. He really doesn't need to walk into anyone, which might just happen if no one's watching where they're going. As for what he's bought her… well she'll just have to wait and find out when he's ready to tell her.

Thea has a smug sort of smile on her face when she agrees with him emphatically, "It certainly does!" And he can't take that as anything but a compliment the way it's been said. That she's proud to show him off is obvious as she sidesteps a harper hurrying past them to get to the square, moves forward to link her arm in his and twinkle approval up at him. "The fit is perfect too. But I'm thinking leather might be a little hot to dance in." And she tries a subtle steer towards that clothier's over there. Subtle. And she'll be happy to wait for him to tell her because she has other things on her mind at the moment. Besides the fact he's hot (cough).

D'had snorts. She might be steering him towards the clothier, and he might be going along as she links arms with him. He's not against that but then he likely doesn't realize just where she's leading him as of yet. "Thanks, but I dun need any new clothes just for that. I ain't dancin'." He's not ready to make a fool of himself in public trying either.

Thea fights one battle at a time, isn't she a wise woman? She ignores that protest as if she hasn't even heard it. "Besides," she goes on as they approach the booth, "There's always formal Weyr events and Harper Hall events." See, she hasn't yet begun to drag him about Pern yet, being so busy with babies and tsunamis and pirates and such. And he thought life was dull! One hand snags back the curtained door and she steps inside, coaxing, "Maybe some new shirts? I'm paying."

D'had follows, reluctant and with a roll of his eyes. "You ain't gotta pay," he replies, stepping inside. "An' I don't need nothin' new." He's not arguing about those formal events, but, "This is just fine." Meaning what he's wearing today. "I ain't a holder or nothin'. I'm a rider. Ain't nothin wrong with riding leathers."

"They're alright," Thea agrees breezily with a look over her shoulder at him. Uh, oh. Puppy eyes. "You wouldn't dress in them if I got them as a gift then?" There's an attendant hovering right there with that sort of may-I-help-you look to whom Thea, now unsure whether this was such a good idea, shrugs at, indicating D'had with a tilt of her head. Since all the clothes in here are men's, well. He gets it right away, smoothly twitching a few shirts for D'had's inspection. "These have been fashioned to go nicely with leathers." Though they are a very fine weave, a smooth silky texture, the cut is more casual than holder's. Thea says nothing.

"If I got 'em I might as well wear 'em," D'had replies with a shrug. So if she gets them as a gift they might get used if he deems the comfortable enough. "But I don't need anythin' so why spend the marks." He has better things to spend his mone on that frufru clothing that he'll wear maybe once a turn.

"You never know, something might come up. And a new shirt once in awhile never hurts?" But she's not going to argue in front of that attendant, who is still trying to get D'had's attention. "You'd have to decide on the comfort, Donn," she adds with a shrug. Though. From the square the sounds of music can now be heard; harpers warming their instruments. "I don't want to be late for the dancing. We can come back." And she's peeking out the door.

D'had glances from both attendant to his weyrmate. "What? You aren't gonna buy me a shirt now?" he asks. Well, if it gets him out of dancing he'll buy three. Maybe. At least looking will get him out of some of it hopefully. "There'll be plenty of that."

Well, if he seems interested, the attendant is certainly going to capitalize on THAT! While Thea continues peeking out the door towards the square, he's chatting up D'had and trying to help the man stall the woman who now looks so anxious to be gone. "You'll want to try these on," he coaxes, rubbing the material across the back of the rider's hand so he can feel the smooth fabric. It's a soft black with silver stitching, loose cut. Nice. He'll even go so far as to reach his long-fingered hands to those buttons on D'had's shirt and help undo them. Really now!

See, now that's where he's crossing the line. Dark eyes narrow at the man, a warning look. Make one more move and he'll stick a dragon on you. Or something like that. "I'm good," he notes, putting a hand up to push the man back even as he moves towards the curtain. "Alright," he gives in, "Let’s go then."

The attendant lifts his hands lift in hasty surrender, palms towards D'had and gives the man an ingratiating smile, even as that hand of D'had's makes contact with his chest and sends him a step or two back. "Alright," is Thea's chipper agreement, eyes turned back over her shoulder as she lags a step behind her weyrmate to silently mouth the words, "We'll take all three." To which the attendant smiles and nods, all happy and trusting they'll be back to pick them up and pay. Which Thea will do and D'had will find them wrapped in brown paper and waiting for him the next morning beside his breakfast. Right now, however, the dancing beckons. Unless D'had can sidetrack Thea some way. Good luck, man.

D'had rolls his eyes, turning back to Thea as she leaves the booth. "Do you believe him?" The gall! Okay, so yes, the attendant there did make a bad impression on Xanadu's Weyrsecond. "You're sure you want to dance though? Sure you can find some willing partner out there. I can watch and make sure he doesn't get too close." That'll suit him just fine.

While Thea makes sympathetic noises in her throat, rolling her eyes along with D'had's there's a glimmer of amusement all the same as she asks, "What? Not appreciative of a little help getting out of your clothes?" But they're nearing the square when he asks that question and it's probably one of the only times he gets a narrow look from her. Flatly, like he's sprouted two heads, "You'd let some other man dance with me." Hah! "I'd rather dance with you." Keep him from getting too close? And he could do that how in the mass of people sure to be out there? Bad enough that he doesn't like the bronzers hanging around the sands after a flight. There are dozens of handsome young men roaming around tonight. Lucky him, they haven't started yet. There's time for drinks.

A few drinks might loosen him up enough to agree to dance, but they certainly aren't going to make him any better at it. As for that 'help' she's talking about, "Now if he'd been a she..," he teases in return, the comment ending with a wink. "Fine fine, but when your toes turn black and blue don't say I didn't warn you." What? He's agreeing?

If he drinks enough of the right ones, he can be so unsteady on his feet that Thea will realize what a bad idea this all is, maybe? Though of COURSE that is the furthest thought from her mind. Especially when D'had makes that remark and she's giving him a playful bump with her hip. "Not a she. A me!" And her mock-stern glare is, well. Not so mock. Possessive anyone? Two can play at that!

D'had chuckles, leaning over to place a kiss on her cheek. "A you," he agrees readily enough. "Don't know that this is the best place for all that though," he taunts, sending her a wink. "But what'dya say about a drink before all that dancin' starts up. Hmm?"

Thea allows that kiss to her cheek with a pretense at primness. They're in public and all, so. "See me later and I'll see what I can do," she murmurs with a suggestive twinkle up at him. After a quick glance towards the raised platform - and the reassurance that they haven't started playing yet, she nods, "Alright, sure. A drink." And the way she says it, she means one. Someone knows the man.

If she knows him that well she should know enough to know that one will rather easily turn to three. "I will," D'had agrees, the words whispered lowly in her ear before he straightens. That said he redirects their path towards one of the nearby tents that possess alcoholic beverage. He's not skimping there ordering up a glass of fine white wine for her and a double shot of whiskey for himself.

Thea's never actually been out with him much, so maybe she doesn't know him all that well. She's only seen him when he's had too much two- make that three times? "Don't forget," she laughs quietly for that promise of his, allowing him to steer her towards that tent. Sitting at one of the tables and sipping her wine slowly, caught up in the music and the whirl of dancers, not minding after all, now that she's off her feet, in waiting out several dances. Easy as well, not paying attention, for D'had to have enough whiskey that by the time she's ready to dance, he's… not. She stands beside him, offering her hand, all chipper and unaware. "Okay, are you ready to dance with me?"

D'had chuckles at that question. There's a bit of chatter around that drink, people watching and the like. "Whenever you are cupcake," he grins, tossing a wink her way. Standing he reaches a hand out to her. He can get that far without looking too drunk, but on the way to the dance floor she might realize just how much he's already had. And on the floor? Well good luck to her poor toes, because he doesn't know how to dance without the drink, he certainly can't do any better with it.

Maybe it's the word cupcake that does it, because she certainly hasn't heard that in a long time. Nor Babe either, alas. But halfway to the dance floor Thea realizes what's gone down. Literally. She halts their progress, which might not be all that steady, narrows her eyes at the man. "Donn. You're drunk." With a sigh and a mutter, she changes course. "Let's get you home." It's just safer. And he's going to need help with those buttons.

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