All Spiderclaws Have Shifty Eyes

Xanadu Weyr - Shore of Lake Caspian
The cliffs that run along the shore come and go, various weyrs nestled along the tops of them or dug into the walls, but eventually they recede enough to expose a beach. The white sand echoes the rise and fall of the cliffs with a multitude of sandy dunes, endlessly creating tiny valleys that are constantly demolished and rebuilt by the frequent arrival or departure of dragons. The dunes smooth out as the gentle slope approaches the edge of the deep blue water. The sand darkens, and a shell here and there stands out for children to collect.

The beach narrows to the southwest, leaving a path barely wide enough for dragons in single file before cutting in to a smaller, more sheltered cove. The sands are the same white, the waters the same blue, but they're calmer and more tranquil, more protected from the winds that ruffle Lake Caspian and the currents that tug beneath the surface.

Rough, wide stairs lead up to the meadow above and the road that runs along the top of the cliffs, passing through the fields and heading for the river mouth that can be just barely seen from here. The largest of the staircases up the cliff is located near the docks that jut out onto the peaceful blue waters.

It's a beautiful autumn day. The sky is blue with puffs of white lazing their way across the otherwise sunny sky. The beach, while crisper than places not bordered by water, hasn't yet become so cold in the season as to be uninviting. On the main section of beach, things are lively enough as to seem somewhat crowded, but skirting that main stretch and heading toward the section of beach most accessible to the weyrlings shows remarkably fewer people. Maybe people have been giving the new lifemates space, maybe they've been content to gawk from afar. Maybe they're concerned about the flying sand. Everyone can thank Glorioth for the new feature of the beach here: a hole, about one bronze large and so far only about two feet deep. « AHAHAHAHA HAHAHAHAH HAHAHA! » He booms his tooooo looooud laughter gleefully as he heaves great piles of sand out behind him. F'yr is in attendance. Or at least, that is probably F'yr, sitting some safe distance away, his head held in his hands, perhaps despairing of the world, or just control over his lifemate or— Laughing. Yes, those bare broad shoulders are shaking with laughter. He's not bare-chested, being with a tight fitted length of bandage from mid pectoral to just below the bottom edge of his ribs, but that bandage and the reason for it is probably why he's got tears streaming down his cheeks as he wheezes painful laughter as the wagon-sized dragon works relentlessly at the task at hand.

The main section of the beach may have plenty of people on it, but one particular blonde is walking the length of them. Docks to weyrling beach. The fact that his head is down is likely at least one reason F'yr may have missed Katailea's approach as she drew nearer. At least he's a safe distance away from that flying sand and she skirts the space perhaps just a bit hesitant of getting too close. Remember her experience with 'little' dragons was the hatching, end of story. Maybe his poor sleep deprived brain is hearing things when a familiar sounding voice says "I'm obviously missing something." Because she doesn't see what's so funny.

He must be sleep deprived because F'yr answers, "He spotted a spiderclaw with shifty eyes, and he's sure if he just keeps digging—" And then the voice, whose voice penetrates and the man is as much explosion of movement as his determined lifemate, only this man's sand only flies because he leaves it so fast, up on his feet and staring at Katailea. He lurches a step toward her that, were this anyone but F'yr, might be aggressive, but it's probably fairly obvious that's him putting the brakes on pretty hard to keep himself from sweeping her into a hug. "You're still here," is a breath and the digging suddenly stops and fast-whirling eyes that shift in hue to one of annoyance are leveled on rider and blonde. The young man's head whips in the direction of the dragon, "Did you see that?!" He calls as if he had seen something and the baby dragon starts and his attention re-focuses on the hole. F'yr's Adam's apple bobs and he looks back to the trader. "Hi." There's tension in every line of his body but he doesn't move toward her this time. "I got your note." The one she left for him, in his dictionary. "I thought you were leaving." His look and voice are briefly touched by sadness, but he had figured that out already so it might explain why his expression now makes a silent bid for some kind of explanation.

"Don't all spiderclaws have shifty eyes?" Katailea laughs, it helps to be in on the story, and when he looks up he's met with a bright smile that amusement brings. Its when he stops that it begins to fade and that first comment is answered with a shake of her head. F'yr may have been intending to distract the dragon, but she too is turning her head to try and spot whatever that fictitious 'thing' might be. That is until he's speaking to her again. "Hi." Uncertain of where to start, of whatelse to say. With another shake of her head she's looking anywhere but at F'yr. She wasn't leaving. "I did," she admits, voice tinged in apology. She did leave. For what, two, three sevens?

"That's part of what's so funny." F'yr grins and the whole of his face lights up. Maybe, just maybe, for as many challenging parts as there are to being partnered with this particular bronze, there are enough good points to warrant the headache and sleep deprivation of it all. "I told him about the spiderclaw with the knife that was a pet from Leirith and now he's determined that it's evil and he has to kill it. He's going to exhaust himself, and I don't have to lift a finger!" Cue a giggle. He might as well be drunk for as sleep-deprived as he must be to make that sound and find this just too funny. Katailea will have to wait for him to finish the laughter that has him pressing hands to thighs and bending forward at the waist, while he laughs and wheezes and whimpers by turns because that much laughter might be a good medicine for many things, but it's not for cracked ribs. "But you came back," is so serious by comparison as the man straightens up and wipes more tears from his cheeks. "Are you staying now? Or… is this a visit?" The fact that it might be temporary makes his expression turn stormy. So many emotions in such a period must be at least in part the lack of sleep and general exhaustion, too.

It's really not that funny. Funny, yes, but that funny, maybe not. "Faranth, that thing was hideous," she says of that particular Leirith-pet. Laughter is infectious however and no matter how hard she might find his laughter finds Katailea giggling again and turning a grin in his direction, lips pressed together as she tries not to snicker even more at the man. A nod as the conversation shifts and she swallows. She came back. "I tried to write," she's trying to explain. The way she looks away and catches a lip between her teeth may not be a good omen for that answer to those questions. Or maybe she didn't hear them while she was searching for her own words. "but I couldn't and.. Forgive me?" Its with those two words that she finally makes eye contact again in silent plea for that answer to be yes.

"Of course," because with F'yr the most important things in life are freely given without a thought spared for what strings could be attached were he a savvier businessman. But he's not, he's just F'yr, and so when there's that worry in his face, that searching look in his eyes as he looks down at the blond and the little tilt of his head, it's to ask again. "Are you staying now?" And it's asked because he cares. It could be a really tender moment if there wasn't a rush of wind and a WHUMP that is a leaping dragon holding a limb flailing spiderclaw in his maw right between F'yr and Katailea. « ON THIS DAY, » ALWAYS-WITH-THE-SHOUTING GLORIOTH INTONES, « HONOR HAS BEEN GLORIED. » And F'yr looks … flabbergasted. The bronze has done the impossible deed. It should have exhausted him, and yet, here he is, looking spry and in his MOST HEROIC POSE.

Relief is what crosses her face at answer, she should have known better than to have even had to ask with him, but having the answer puts her more at ease. Katailea finally answers that question, when it's asked the second time, with a nod and a simple, "Yes." An answer that might have been followed by something more were it not for the sudden and unexpected appearance of Glori which finds her taking a step backwards and falling on her ass. At least it's sand beneath her, even if it does take a second or two of staring before she's moving to find her feet again. This could have gone so much better.

« AHAHAHAHAHAH, SHE FALLS AT MY FEET, F'YRST FRIEND, DO YOU SEE? » That's warm approval in the bronze's voice that goes to both people here and frankly to anyone within shouting distance. "I… see." F'yr's tone is helplessly bemused. « You know, you could stand to learn a thing or two from her about proper awe, » the still so small for a bronze at not even yet 1/5th his final enormous size (small for a bronze, but relative to tiny humans, gargantuan) was probably going for a sotto voce aside, but it really only manages normal mental decibels. The big blond reaches a hand down to offer help to the fallen woman. "I'm glad you're staying." He glances to his lifemate and adds, "Katailea, this is Glorioth. Glorioth, Katailea." The bronze's head angles to give the blonde a thorough look, although he fortunately keeps his nose to himself in making this visual assessment. Too small to be a threat and no, her eyes aren't particularly shifty, not like the spiderclaw. « CAN I CONSUME MY ENEMY NOW? » This makes F'yr's brows dip down. "I'm… not sure? I've never… eaten…" He gestures to the creature and then looks to the woman of the sea. "Any idea if eating that shell will hurt him?" Even though he's asked, he ventures, "Maybe we ought to ask—" CRUNCH CRUNCH CRUNCH. "GLORI!" Who knew Stefyr could bellow? Aside from Rhodelia. And possibly now every other weyrling and weyrling staff. It doesn't faze the bronze at all, of course. « TASTES LIKE SAND. » How does he know? Probably because the thing was wrested from its sandy burrow and is covered with the stuff. But also possibly because the baby dragon tried to eat sand on an earlier occasion.

Katailea just blinks, head tilting in an almost cringe at the sound of that voice in her head. He's loud F'yr, just in case you haven't noticed. A hand fumbles for the one that's offered because she's still that tiny giant at least until she's back on her feet. "Hello?" is her hesitant greeting for the bronze followed by a glance towards his rider. "They're good," she nods, "but I don't know about …" Too late! "The shell." Or if dragons can eat spiderclaw period. "Maybe I should…" Go? Come back later?

Oh, F'yr has noticed. It's just that he's becoming PARTIALLY DEAF. No, not really, but he probably has gotten past the point of headaches every moment. Maybe he's slightly inured to the noise by now. "I should probably take him to the dragonhealer and find out if he's going to be- -" The tired weyrling manages to just barely stop himself short of describing yucky baby dragon tummy troubles to the non-weyrling. « IT'S STICKING IN MY TEETH, » says the still chewing bronze. "Spit it out," F'yr tries, but there's no sign of that happening and he grits his teeth. "Yeah, dragonhealer. Sorry, Katailea. I- - can we talk another time? Will you visit us in the training grounds? Please?" He dropped her hand as soon as she was steady, but now he reaches as if he means to take it, stopping well short at a snort and sharp look from Glorioth who promptly spits masticated spiderclaw shell on his rider. That's his opinion of the unnecessary touching. "… Augh." F'yr stares at the mass of yuck on his shoulder. "I'd better go. But listen," it's a little urgent, like a hostage speaking in code to one negotiating for freedom, "Visit us. We'd like to see you." That 'we' is probably not just he and Glorioth whose liking may be highly suspect given recent events, but all the weyrlings. Then the young man is turning. He should have to herd his dragon back to the barracks, only the sudden and swift turn by the solidly built beast heralds a MUCH TOO LOUD, « ONWAAAAAaaaaaaAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAaaaaaaaaaaaaaaAAAAAAAAARD! » and a run, wings held aloft just so that he looks every inch the shining hero as he rapidly out-distances his suddenly running lifemate who follows.

Katailea nods. "Yeah," she understands and better they check in before something unpleseant occurs, but she certainly appreciates him stopping where he does. No need for details on that. "Of course," she agrees, laughing when Glorioth finally spits out what's left of that poor shifty-eyed spiderclaw. Sorry F'yr. So gross, but its not on her so it is a little funny. "I will." They'll talk later, she'll visit soon. "Now go." But he doesn't need to be told twice.

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