...Because Space Renegades

Yokohama - Hydroponics Bay

The first thing that one might notice upon stepping into the hydroponics bay is that it was in fact, not always used for this purpose. In truth this area was once home to a much larger portion of the ship responsible for the cryogenic storage of seeds, plants, and animals from Terra. Some of these did not survive the trip, others were found to be unadaptable to Pern's harsher environment. As if to give this sad testimonial a measure of hope, most of the old cryogenic equipment here has been removed, whether it was simply dismantled for research, or melted down for its precious steel and in its place has taken root a truly amazing sight.

Everywhere there is warm life giving green. Nothing is planted here that can't be pruned without killing the main body, insuring that nothing biological manages to work its way into the ship's electrical and causes unnecessary extra work for the crew. Whole sections have been dedicated to various plants by species, including trees, vast beds of flowers, herbs, and even patches for fruits and vegetables. A watering system installed over these sections allowing a light mist or spray as programmed for each plants individual needs. What moisture is not used or is created by the plants leeches away into specially designed receptacles that repurifies them through a filter either for redistribution here or elsewhere as needed.

Not only do these green growing thing provide supplements to the crew's diet, but also precious oxygen. The air in this space is crisp, clean and absolutely clear of any impurities, which is a great source of delight for those living aboard ship. Regardless of the cold steel that peeks through the foliage and present at the feet, this place is a favorite among the crew and many members can be found here for an off duty stroll.

It's been several days since that night that changed everything for Mathis and over the course of that time, he's more or less returned to his normal self. Jaunts away the hydroponics floor start as brief, merely to get this or that and return as quickly as humanly possible, with no pressure for Rinian to join him. To the Infirmary, which did exist, to get icepacks for his head. To the residential area, for blankets and pillows. To the cargo bay, because he wanted to eat something that wasn't a fruit or vegetable. Each time he leaves, it takes him longer to return, much like it did this morning after breakfast. Several hours past before the lift whirls and whines, zipping open, and deposits the woodcrafter boy carrying several bulky packs he struggles with. Dropping them somewhere close by, he pauses and stretches out his thin and lanky body, and perhaps crack his back. "Rin? I found some stuff…" he calls out, expecting a response because this was the only place that the older girl felt even remotely comfortable.

Rinian has gone out a little, but returns much more quickly that he has. She really doesn't want this place to get the best of her, but she is only having moderate success there. Good thing she didn't go into the crafts that come up here for their work! To say she would have been completely at home in the pre-tech Pern would be very accurate. Back on the day of the party while still at Xanadu she was worried about her first flight on a dragon, and first trip between, and SPACE. Flying was awesome. Between..well..she thinks after being in space, between isn't so awful and something she could get used to. Space..well..stars are nice. The view of the planet is amazing. But…nope. She does her best to hide her discomfort from her friend but likely completely fails there too. She's been working on that tiny little square of hard wood, taking her time and getting comfort from that simple work. Thus far she's made it a true cube, and then with painstaking care, has freed the ball within the box. The 'ball' itself isn't really round yet. That's the part she's been working on the longest. To get it truely round, without making it so small it would slip out from between the frame, that is all that is left of the cube. She glances up at the call and wonders, "What have you found?" He's certainly made their stay here a lot more comfortable with his wanderings. Sure they could stay in the resident guest area but…nope.

"Everything?" Mathis jokes about the contents of the sacks he'd returned with, leaning back to peek over at Rinian past an impressive swath of tomato vines that have been trained to twist and twine around some PVC piping from floor to ceiling. If he never saw another tomato, he would be fine with it. They'd probably eaten a million of them simply for convenience's sake, when too engrossed with what either of them were working on. The boy's adventures off the floor represented less than ten percent of his waking hours, the rest spent on whittling and practicing techniques, and offering opinion and tips. He'd been closely watching Rinian progress with her project when he was around to do so, but considering how well she was doing on her own there was more encouragement than suggestion. Picking one of the two sacks, Mathis drags it over rather than carries it, his arms already feeling like jelly. Undoing the ties, he yanks it open and peers inside, rummaging. "I found some more wood, ration packs, bottles of water, a couple more blankets, some silverware, plates, another set of woodworking tools…but I'll probably have to return those…um…shears…" And the list goes on, itemizing the contents of one pack and then doing the same for the second. They were rich! Well, at least they would be once the bartering system was in place, because it was sure looking like they were going to spend the rest of their lives aboard the Yokohama.

Rinian's brows start working their way slowly upward, gaining top elevation by the time he gets to the end of his list. "I do hope you asked for permission for all of these things." Because stealing=Bad. He hadn't grabbed quite so much in the past and she'd assumed blankets and such were all properly acquired. But this is quite a haul! Her little ball in a box isn't the sort of intricate carving he does..or that she does at other times, but it has its own set of challenges. Like holding the ball still as she works on it, working between the bars of its cage in tiny little strokes, and getting it round without getting it too small. One might wonder why she'd chosen a carving of something of one shape imprisoned within another. Well..maybe its obvious at that. She sets her work aside, careful to cover the blade, and rises. "Here, let me help you." She sighs, "How much longer before they come back to get us, do you think?" Because surely it was planned, right?

There are very few things that would drive Sylvarin to pick his own ingredients. Situation A: the thing is very rare and he's forced to scavenge because no one else will. Situation B: Desperation. Currently he's enacting Situation B. It's not surprise that the ingredient selection on the Yokohama isn't nearly as great as here on Pern, so Sylv is trying to make do with what he can find….which leads him here in search of fruit. As soon as the lift doors slide open and he steps out the man's face is already paling at all the greenery. "Honestly, you'd think the one place you could avoid all this would be space…." But he does want some stuff to make use of, so beggars can't be choosers etc etc. It takes a moment for him to catch sight of too familiar faces and soon the baker his making his way towards Rinian and Mathis with a wave that's a bit more stiff than his usual greetings. "Don't suppose you guys could direct me to the fruit area?"

Mathis beams brightly in triumph as he reaches the end of the list, but as he looks up from his haul and sees the look on Rinian's face, hears her words, his face falls. Uh oh. "I have to ask permission to take stuff?" Is that really surprising though? Is it? Perplexed by this development, the boy looks down at two stuffed full bags of things and suddenly had no idea what to do with them. The candidates had been abandoned on a space station, without anything really to call their own and with no idea when they would be allowed to return. Maybe, just maybe, D'lei and Risali had seen this pack of candidates as rejects and had left them there to fend for themselves, busy now gathering up replacements. Well, that and Mathis had been getting as much stuff as he he's thought they'd need to that they could barricade themselves in here with the food once the space renegades boarded. Imagination folks, the struggle was real. Heaving the heaviest of sighs, ever, he nods for Rinian's offer of aid while stealing a glance of her progress since he'd left that morning, "Coming along nice." Muttered and distracted, guilt replacing enthusiasm. How was he to know that it wasn't the apocalypse? Hazel eyes dart towards Rinian as she asks how long they would be up here, pursing his lips to resist the urge to whisper 'I don't think they are' because he knew that the girl would freak out everywhere on everything and then they would have no food. Or air. Yeah, no. With the sound of the lift arriving, Mathis stiffens and looks over that way, frowning at who it was down for a visit. Up for a visit? Whatever. "Fruits are over there," he says flatly, jerking his chin that direction and then steps away to drag a sack over towards the tree the two woodcrafters were sharing their base camp.

Rinian internally oh dears when she watches Mathis range of emotions. "Well, don't worry about it. When they come back for us we'll return the items we've borrowed. Well..except for the food of course. not much to be done there." Very practical. "We should use the wood you found to make them something nice in repayment for the use of all of this?" She grabs the other bag he'd dropped to bring closer to their little lair. At the new arrival she looks over and lifts her other hand in greeting. As directions are already given, she doesn't worry about it.

Sylvarin rasies an eyebrow at the look he receives from Mathis and tilts his head slightly, "Second meeting and I'm hated already? That has to be a record of some sort." Though in all honesty, he doesn't sound disturbed by this. His eyebrows hold their usual parma-knit, even as he raises a hand to wave a greeting to Rinian as well. Blue-green eyes move in the direction of the fruit trees and bushes and the corners of Sylv's lips pull downwards. Still, he moves in the that direction, hand twitching just slightly at the prospect of picking the fruit. At least it's better than the real outdoors?

When? Try if! Unconvinced that they were going to return to Pern and weren't going to have to trade the others for the supplies they needed to survive in space, Mathis just nods his head a couple times but otherwise remains silent on the topic. Instead, he focuses on the wood he's found, some pretty nice pieces perhaps left behind by some nameless woodcrafter long forgotten, "You want to work on it together?" he proposes for the thank-you-for-letting-us-steal-your-stuff-and-not-reporting-us gift, looking up with brows raised. Sylvarin is purposefully ignored up until his back was turned, hardened hazel eyes following the man's back as he heads towards the fruits, before the boy 'hmfs' and gives the bag of goods one last tug so that it comes to rest against the base housing of the tree. Yep, he totally hates him. However, instead of lingering on that and letting it consume his soul, Mathis brightens in regards to Rinian as he delves back onto things much less depressing. "What were you thinking for the gift?"

While Ajral didn't KNOW she was going to get stuck in space, she was at least smart enough to carry the bag she usually carries. Which means she had other clothing than her butterfly costume, it's just that in some places a pink dress and black leggings are not WARM enough. She'd been in the infirmary and ended up with freezing cold arms, since strangely enough it is heavily air conditioned, and followed signs and buttons to hydroponics, because the garden must be warmer — "Gift?" she noses her way into conversation with familiar faces, "For Risali and D'lei, or someone else?" For the people who abandoned them in space to die? Totally get them presents.

Rinian watches the exchange between Sylv and Matty with some dismay. "What is all that about?" This time it is obvious dislike and not something else. And so far as the gift idea… "Something to remind them of life down below?" Nature! Living things! Not…tech. She is surprised to see so many people show up and offers for the question of or whom, "For the people that work up here." Crazy, insane, nutty people.

"He's a jerk," Mathis says dismissively and there wasn't anything that anyone could say that would change his mind. Not now. Not EVER. Except Sylvarin wasn't a jerk and the boy wouldn't be mad at him for simply existing for very long. Right now, his wounds were too fresh. Ajral's arrival was serendipitous in that it gave him something else to think about, shaking his head in agreement with Rinian as she outlines who it was they were wanting to gift. Like D'lei and Risali deserved anything! They'd abandoned them to space and space renegades, without even leaving them anything to defend themselves with. What were star and techcrafters going to do? Bore them to death with starcharts and techobabble? Looking up and over to the woodcrafter's base camp, "Maybe a tree?" he asks the girl helping him to unload the things he'd taken from all over the ship.

"I would have suggested a plant," Ajral agrees as she takes in Rinian's explanation and Mathis' feedback, though she glances around and extends a hand to indicate the entire room, "Except. It seems a little redundant? A tree would probably end up in here too — but trees are really very nice, and it's likely everyone should have one." She has one. In a pot. In her room. She didn't bring it to the candidates' barracks with her because that would be insane, but she does still have one. "Perhaps a fish, if not a plant. Do they have fish here?" In tanks, one assumes. PS you're welcome Sylvarin.

*Bing!* The lift opens and off steps Teinon, out into…green. It isn't the first time he's been to this part of the station, but that doesn't stop him from visibly relaxing the moment he steps in. He takes a deep breath, holds it for several seconds, and then lets it out in a happy whoosh. Then, just as he was getting prepared to enjoy a stroll through all this pretty greenery, he notes which people are there. Suddenly, he looks like a person who is /so over this whole space thing, omgforrealyouguys/.

Rinian was over with this space thing the moment they got here. But she's trying! Not succeeding entirely. But trying. It's a good thing she has no idea what's going on in Matty's head because that would not help. As to Sylv..well.. She frowns a little when he gets called a jerk. But now there are others so she drops the subject..for now. "Oh yes, an animal would be a great idea." LIFE. Not cold icky metal things and scary tech stuff that makes no sense and a lot of humming noises. At the ringing of the lift she waves a bit to Teinon, with a glance to Matty to check his reaction.

The hydroponics bay had a tree in it, presently, Mathis and Rinian were living at the base of it as if they were camping rather than trapped in three thousand tons of spinning metal hurdling through space. They'd been hunkered down here for the last couple of days, with the younger of the pair bringing back supplies as he'd found them. "Maybe an avian?" he suggests to Rinian, because he knew there weren't any of those on the Yokohama. At least, that he knew of. Mathis hadn't been everywhere yet, but general wildlife was certainly lacking aside from those manageable to maintain. With a nod for Ajral, he confirms the existence of fish, "Tropical and freshwater. The tropical ones are pets I think cause they were really tiny…the other ones…" Were delicious, assuming of course that this was the reason for his sudden 'yum' expression and that needful sigh. Bing indeed. A single glance towards the opening lift and then away again, trying to control his expression, but a sea of complex emotion overtakes it anyway. "I'm going to go put this stuff away…" he says softly, sadly even, finding new strength to tug one of the two satchels away and around behind the tree. Out of sight. They had a sort of collection of items back there, and their pilfered supplies weren't going to expand on their own.

The idea of an avian makes Ajral grin probably more than she should. "Oh! That's an excellent idea. I'd love to see an avian just flying around up here. Well, maybe not here — " Garden level, likely not the best place, especially since some of that hanging stuff could get knocked over. But the dismal, freezing infirmary could definitely use something nice like that. "Tropical ones are usually pets," she agrees, aso going along with just sweeping right past discussing what else was being done with the fish. It's not that she won't eat fish. It's that she doesn't want to make the connection.

Teinon catches Mathis as he ducks out of the way. He swipes a hand over his face in an obvious gesture of weariness, but then he sucks it up, dredges up some sympathy, and waves a hand to try to catch Rinian's eye. The nice thing about sign language is that he can send a message from alllll the way over by the lift without ever alerting Mathis to it. Convenient! (Assuming Rinian has good vision…) After a few signs at Rin, he turns around and hits the lift call button again.

Rinian looks between the pair and with a smile gestures to Teinon to come on over, and then signs to him. "Matty? Soon as you're done we need to talk about the avian." She nods to Ajral, "We could even carve him to set up in a branch of the tree here. Unless maybe one on a stand in that room where the party was?" Something to ground that view of the world with life from the world.

The boy grins back at Ajral when she does, pleased she seems to genuinely like his idea, "One of the computer crafters showed me how to use the AVIS system…uh, how to browse it on topics. You want to do one from Earth or something more…in-indigi-ness?" Yes, indiginess. He means indigenous, but was having trouble with the complexity of the sounds he needed. As for fish? A nod and he's gone to unpack. Only when Rinian calls back to him does he answer from the behind the tree, "Okay", although he was dragging his heels back there in order to stretch out his incognito time as much as he can. Out of sight, out of mind. Ostrich-like. Mathis is unaware of the hand signals that are exchanged between the female woodcrafter and Teinon, not that he would understand them even if he did see it. Still, one by one the things in the pack are removed and set into a place they won't just topple over, while at the same time straining an ear for anything he might be able to overhear.

The signing is also not noted by Ajral, who probably would have understood it, because she is just not paying attention. She's thinking about birdies! Or other creatures with wings that might count as avians, but primarily birdies. "I'd suggest something from Earth personally since I think that's where this came from?" History: not her strong point really. It's likely to be her last suggestion, but that doesn't mean she doesn't remain; she's there, in the background, observing and being helpful as needed — or possibly wandering through the garden once or twice or ten times if she's n ot needed. Because here, it isn't freezing, and it's easier to pretend that they are not trapped in space.

That lift must have /immediately/ set off to pick someone else up, because Teinon's having to wait an awfully long time for it to come back. He might have missed that Rinian was trying to call him back, otherwise. He raises an eyebrow, but shakes his head apologetically, and waves her off. He signs a bit more, and then jerks a thumb toward the lift. That is still taking its sweet, sweet time.

Rinian usually acts like she's 40 turns or something, but at the moment she does a beautiful example of a teenager eyeroll, suitable to her age. "Oh come on, the both of you. You'll never settle into a comfortable exchange if you don't actually spend time in each other's company."

"It is," tossed out from behind the tree about three seconds before Mathis follows, gaze downcast and paying a whole lot more attention to his feet than he does anything else. He was talking to Ajral and confirming that indeed, the Yokohama was from Earth. He couldn't tell you how many colonists there had been, but some of the information he'd come across was nonetheless valid. "I saw a bunch of really interesting ones, I'll go have a look later." You know, when it's late and mostly everyone else was passed out and dreaming about the sky above them rather than riveted paneling. The lift hadn't dinged, so he knew that Teinon was still there, Rinian's exasperation with them both more than enough to convince him that grabbing that other bag and taking it behind the tree was required. Frowning, hazel eyes are lifted by turned onto Rinian and her alone, "Why should I? He was clearly grossed out that a kid liked him, see…can't even be on the same level as me. Well…" Turning his face upwards towards the foliage stretched out above from the tree beside them, "SO SORRY FOR LIKING YOU." Stomp. Stomp. Stomp. Draaaaaaaaaaag. And there he goes, taking the other satchel.

Teinon actually winces visibly when Rinian says that. Then Mathis has his meltdown, and Tein is back to scrubbing his face. He tosses a last longing look at the lift, and then abandons it. Not, however, to come over to join the group. Oh no. He takes out that notebook that's tucked into his belt (thanks Syl!), finds a nice spot to lean against the wall, and starts writing something down. This is gonna take a minute. Probably best not to wait.

Rinian looks between them once again, and she is tired of being the grown up here! Without a word to either one she returns to her spot under the tree and picks up the bit of wood she's been working on. She takes a couple of deep breaths to calm herself before she unsheathes the small carving tool and bends to her work.

There certainly were a lot more candidate and people here than Mathis had ever seen before or wanted honestly. What he really wanted was his safe haven back, when it was just him and Rinian, their stolen property, and wood carving. No drama, no overwhelming emotions, no stupid adults. That's right Teinon, the boy was calling you stupid, and adult. Inside his head. Probably more than a few other colorful metaphors he'd promised his foster-mother he wouldn't say. Anger was better to feel than any of the other feelings that Mathis experienced when he saw the beastcrafter, he understood it better too. All those hormones were scary man, terrifying, threatening to change everything he knew about the world and himself. Already, thanks to Rinian, he had a foot in a door he hadn't realized was for him and what he saw on the other side he wasn't ready for. Sometimes, being a kid, really sucked. Draaaaag. Draaaaag. And he'd arrived, slamming down this and that with enough of a racket to carry over. At least, for a minute or two, then it gets pretty quiet.

When Teinon is satisfied with his note, he tears it out of the book, then tucks the book back into his belt. He shoots a solemn look toward Rinian as he passes straight by her and around the tree to find Mathis. When he finds the kid, he hands him the note. If the kid doesn't want to take it, he will insist. It's really all up to Mathis whether he takes it nicely or gets it shoved rudely in his face. READ IT, KID. The note has a lot of scribblings where he marked things out and rephrased, but in the end, it reads: 'I am not "grossed out," though I'm offended you would accuse me of that. I'm trying to be tactful. I'm trying to respect your feelings. I'm trying to do the right thing. But also, I'm trying to remember that you're half my age, and if someone perceives that I'm encouraging you in all this? Or if they think you're acting this way because I _did something_ to you? They're not going to stop to read an essay about why I'm innocent.' Healthy streak of Holder kid coming out in that there note, ayup.

Rinian glances at the movement and nods to Teinon slightly. She hopes that note is full of good adulty saying things that will help her friend because..she's got nothing. If Matty won't be reasonable she just runs out of ideas. She doesn't want her friend miserable. She doesn't want Teinon miserable. She just wants everybody to get along!

Mathis had no idea what Rinian was up to just there on the opposite side of the tree from him, though he might have felt bad about his behavior if he'd thought to consider what it was doing to her. Sure, he'd known and loved her longer than anyone beside his family, and now there was this other guy that she wanted to be friends with and that guy just so happened to be the first person he'd ever looked at, differently than he had before. Like lightning. Wham. Matty had no idea what to do with all these newfound feelings, not when he'd never had them before. So, after slamming a few things which made him feel better only as long as he was slamming them, he's plunked himself down to lean against the tree surrounded by the junk and food he'd confiscated from all over the ship. Roughly swiping at his face with the heel of his palms and looking downright miserable, the boy looks up when someone comes around the tree's soiled housing, looking as if all the world was ending as those big hazel eyes track Teinon briefly before he drops them down to his knees. The offered note is taken blindly managing to pluck it from the hand that holds it, and he pulls it into the small bubble of personal space he'd cordoned off for himself. Reading it slowly, pausing to wipe his eyes, brows twitching into a furrow as he struggles with a few of the words. He was not a harper and even in his lessons he'd been thinking about carving. He gets to the end at some point, staring at the portion of the page that was blank as if expecting more or something else to miraculously appear just because he wishing it would. "I don't want to feel this way, but I don't know how to make it stop. I want to go back to when I didn't care about this stuff, when crafting was all I could think about," he admits quietly, curling up marginally closer to himself.

Rinian can't help but hear the one sided conversation on the other side of the tree. Not wanting to be a rude eavesdropper however, she rises to her feet with her little project in hand and moves away far enough to not overhear. It really is something those two have to sort out after all. Well…mostly what poor Matty needs to sort out. She does glance back a moment on her way and..is a bit aghast at the mess going on behind the tree. Well..she'll deal with that later.

Teinon sits down while Mathis is busy reading, not too terribly close, but still close enough to pass notes, as needed. He leans his back against a tree, and watches as Mathis reads. The kid's words bring a pained smile to his face, and he sighs. Back to the notebook! He writes some words, thinking carefully as he writes, then tears the page out and hands it over. The next note reads: A dragon egg can't unhatch. It sucks in the beginning. But someday you'll change your mind. It gets better. Growing up sucks, but _being_ grown up is kind of nice.

Rinian was moving, Mathis could hear her getting up and walking away, unsure where she was going but probably not far. She hated space, this ship, being trapped in both at the same time. He couldn't blame her, and he would definitely try to protect her once the space renegades arrived. None too far away there was already a sizable pile of throwable objects he'd been preparing for such an emergency. Tension finds the boy's form when Teinon takes a seat nearby, spying him out of the corner of his eye but only allowing himself a peek every now and then rather than risk getting caught up in looking at him. The man's sigh makes Mathis's shoulders hunch, finger fiddling with the frayed bits at the top of the page he'd been handed previously, waiting through the scritching for another to be offered. When it comes, it's given the same treatment as the first, only this time it bring about the lightness of a frown, "I'm not going to change my mind," he decides with gruffer tone, brought on by another wave of feels that has him swiping at his face hastily, "I don't want to feel like this anymore or ever again, it's not fair, I didn't ask for this stuff. I don't want to wait for things to gett better, I want them better now." Dropping the papers, Mathis wraps his arms around his legs and draws them to his chest, tucking his head in behind his knees.

Rinian tries to not let the mess at the tree bother her, but it does. She just itches to clean it up. But she is just going to have to wait till Mathis and Tenion are finished. She has no clue about the renegades in Matty's mind. Which is good. She's got enough stress as it is. She finds a nice grassy spot to settle in with her project. Not so far to hear if Matty calls her, but not so close as to unintentionally overhear their conversation. She turns the little cube in her hand slowly, the dark wood glowing softly in the artificial sunlight.

"Man, you'd think someone left us abandoned on a spaceship with little to no hope for survival judging by the atmosphere in this place." Sylvarin's less than helpful remarks are what signal his re-appearance at this particular area of trees. The baker still looks a bit paler than normal given all the greenery around him, but his expression as turned to something more annoyed. Is it at the conversation going on? Not at all. It's because he's had to lift his shirt up and use it as a makeshift bag to carry the assortment of berries and other fruits that he's plucked up. It's a /nice/ shirt (like all his clothes) and this is /not/ appreciated. Clearly he should have thought ahead. "Though I'm fairly sure they won't let us all die out up here." Keyword /all/.

Teinon is a sad panda. Like the saddest ever. That's what you get for having an expressive face! And it's all Mathis's fault. Tein shakes his head and starts writing another note. It's a bit shorter than before, and he passes it over… Just in time to give a bit of a jump at the sound of a familiar voice. He looks up, with a shy and slightly rueful crooked grin. To find half of Syl's stomach exposed and he kind of turns a darker shade of pink and looks down at his notebook. He gives a little wave toward Syl as greeting. Such awkward. This note reads: Someday you'll apologize to me for not believing me that it's all worth it.

Misery, thy name is Mathis. Oh, maybe he could change his name and start living on the beach in a hermit hut? Okay, yeah, maybe not so feasible when you're exiled to space and waiting to be boarded by renegades. Scratch that one, Matty. So, instead, he wallows in his bath of hormones, feelings, and silence. Well, silence being relative. There was a few occasional sniffles now and again, but those don't count. Muscles (AHAHAHAAH muscles) tighten at the introduction of another note, reluctant to take it even if it was floating there just on the edge of his periphery. The heaviest of heavy sighs, the kind that signals the weight of the world, and Mathis does what's expected of him. Paper in hand, watery eyes trace over the loops and curves that form letters and the letter that make words and once again he frowns, "It feels like I'm dying inside, how could anything be worth that?" he chokes, opening his mouth to add more but the sounds of a voice he'd know anywhere cuts that short. Forced to watch the effects that it has on Teinon, the boy stares at him aghast, as if the beastcrafter had just slapped him across the face, "Really?" he scoffs, features hardening, soon pushing himself off where he was seated and to his feet. Thanks to Rinian, he now knew exactly what all that was. Tugging his shirt down, he storms over and wordlessly stands before Sylvarin, and my my my if looks could kill. Tiny, puny, spindly thing with daggers for eyes the rake down all of that exposed flesh and then back up to blue-green eyes. Poisonous really. Boyish jaw line tightening, he reaches out and grabs the front of the baker's tunic, and immediately turns and walks off with the poor guy in toe back around behind the tree. "Here," he says unhappily, sniffling a few times and give a gentle enough push to send Sylvarin off balance and hopefully into Teinon, or that was the goal at least, "He like you." This is said to the baker, frowning at the beastcrafter, "I can see the appeal." With that he turns on his heel and marches himself straight over to Rinian throwing his arms around her and holding her super tight. Like his lifeline. That, had been incredibly hard for him to do, but there it was.

Rinian is too far away to hear any of those exchanges, but when she sees Sylv and then…all of that. She can make some guesses at least. By the time Matty has reached her she's put aside the wood cube and sheathed the carving tool, so she's ready to wrap her arms around the boy and hold him gently.

Sylvarin glances over towards Teinon, catching his gaze and fumbling through a signed greeting with the one hand he has free. It's supposed to say 'hello Teinon' butlwho knows what it actually turns out to be. "Seems like you're making good use of the note boo-" His words are quickly cut short as Mathis suddenly appears before him, those eyes flashing poison darts in his direction. Those plrma-knitted brows furrow even further even more as he begins glancing between the boy, Teinon and Rinian. He doesn't flinch or turn away, but there's a brief flash of surprise in the baker's gaze when he's grabbed by the shirt and dragged away. Mathis is easily able to knock him off balance and Sylvarin stumbles back into Teinon, though it only takes moments for the baker to steady himself. "Sorry, could you hold these…or watch them?" The words are a quiet murmur to Teinon who is either receiving a shirt-full of fruits or watching them meet the ground. As soon as his hands are free Sylvarin is stalking over to the hugging Rin/Mathis and fingers quickly hook into the back of Mathis' shirt collar as he does a similar move, aka dragging away. Me and my appeal need to have a chat with you, come on.." There's a hint of frustration in his voice, but no real anger. Though if Mathis tries to fight? He'll put all his muscles to work trying to make sure this happens. There's a nice semi-secluded spot in that corner over there.

Matthias's scoff draws Tein's gaze back up from the paper, and in that instant he realizes his mistake. Embarrassed horror flashes across his face, and he tries to wave his hand, as though that could erase the hurt feelings. But it's too late. Too late to do anything more than stumble after the kid, get run into by a baker, and find himself with an armful of…fruits. How appropriate. When he realizes why, it only alarms him further. Which means he's /juuust/ about reaching peak panic. He glances to Rin, then quickly realizes there's no point trying to get her attention when his arms are too full to sign. He grimaces, unhappily, looks toward Syl and Mathis… And something steely enters his eyes. A resolve that he's had just about enough. He takes a deep breath and opens his mouth to say something. Yes, say! …. Okay, 'say' is an exaggeration. It's more of a harsh croak, halfway between a goose and a wookie. The word is unclear, but possibly 'hey!' Or maybe it was just a wordless bark to get their attention. Whatever it was, it clearly cost him to do it, judging by the pain twisting his expression.

The very instant that Mathis turned his back he was doing his utmost to ignore what was going on behind him, pinpointing Rinian and getting to her as quickly as he could. Shorter than her, he buries his face in her neck and holds her as he is held. He was not expecting Sylvarin to come after him, let alone hook a finger into the back of his shirt to try haul him away for a private talk which apparently included the baker's appeal. Appeal of which, were he not upset, might have clicked and shifted things into the sort of perspective that would have made his current circumstances seem pale in comparison. Pale, and rather irrelevant. The reality was tugging at him, releasing his hold of Rinian only so she didn't get pulled along as some sort of attachment, and to bat away the offending digit. "No, I don't want to. You and your appeal need to go over there where your wanted…" is about as far as he gets before that coughing/barking/garbled thing comes from the direction of Teinon, startling the heck outta him. Wide red and watery eyes are turned that direction, following by a whole lot of blinking. What was that? It's the pained expression on the beastcrafter's face that follows that flashes guilt across Mathis's, reaching out a hand for Rinian because she was totally his security blanket guys.

Rinian had already taken a few steps after the pair when Matty was pulled away, and then a quick few more to grab his extended hand. She doesn't turn him into a tug of war rope, but will trot along behind to wherever he's being taken. It doesn't stop her from responding to the tortured sound from Teinon however. Alarmed that he's hurt himself she calls out to him, "Are you ok?" Poor girl surrounded by all these men. Can't we get some more female reason in here please?

Reason - female or otherwise - comes obliviously through the door from the lift, looking down at a notepad, up to try to follow ceiling conduits, and nearly stumbling headlong into the cluster of her fellow candidates. Meion takes a half-step back, hands up, face full of apologies, and she almost makes it to "I'm so sorry" before she actually takes in what she's seeing. Tears. Some sort of coercion. All kinds of distress and emotions and all the sorts of things she's terrible at! But now she's here, and instead of apologies it's "is everything okay?" Unspoken, but loud in her head, is the question what did I just walk in on?

Sylvarin freezes in place, immediately turning at the sound of Teinon's voice with surprise clearly in his eyes. His expression quickly switches between sympathy and a quiet sigh escapes the baker's lips. "Look, I'm not going to try and hit him or anything…" He'd be the last to get into a fist fight. "I just wanted to talk to him." His gaze softens just a bit as he looks to meet the herder's eyes and now it's more of a silent question 'please?' His gaze lingers for a moment longer before he's turning right back to the resisting Mathis. His next movements are quick and fluid. There's a quick bend of his knees and a flash of his arms as Sylvarin's shoulder gets pushed into the young candidate's stomach and within moments Mathis is off the ground. There's a grunt from the effort (Sylv is in shape but not Mr. Muscle-man guys) and then he's just hauling the boy off despite any protests. Though if Teinon is insistent about it, that might actually stop Sylv at this moment. Otherwise? That little area of bushes and flowers looks like it'll do just the trick and it's exactly where the woodcrafter will be deposited. "Seriously…we have to talk about this." This coming from Sylv who /really/ doesn't like to talk about these sorts of things. What DID you just walk in on Meion? WHAT INDEED. Because this is probably /not/ a great first impression of Sylv, just randomly hauling of crying teenagers. Don't mind him. He'll make it up with desserts later probably!

Teinon meets Sylvarin's gaze. He doesn't look happy about it. Certainly there's nothing to suggest he's agreeing with what Syl is about to do. His mouth works a little, like he'd like to protest, but too late! Syl is hauling off Mathis, and Tein is stuck there with a stupid armful of fruit. His gaze wanders to Rin in a daze, apparently having caught the gist of her question. He shakes his head, miserably, but he keeps holding the fruit because what else is he going to do with it, SYLVARIN.

"I told you I don't want to talk to you!" Mathis reiterates, starting to move away as soon as Sylvarin engages Teinon in a rather one sided conversation with a whole lot of other stuff being said with their eyes that he A) wanted nothing to do with, and B) didn't really understand. Nor did he want to. He's said and done what he was going to and now he wanted Rinian and their fortress of solitude back. This had gone so much better in his head. Slyvarin falling into Teinon's lap, they look at one another, do that blushy thing all over one another and then hold hands. BEHIND THE TREE WHERE HE DIDN'T HAVE TO SEE IT. Hmf. Yes, it is quite the scene, wasn't it Meion? What that must of looked like. "What? Why would you hit me?" comes the interjection, staring back at Sylvarin, "I didn't DO anything." It was quite the scene, and admittedly there is only one person here responsible for all, that five foot (if he was lucky) bundle of budding hormones over there. About to walk away from this, whatever it was, Mathis is soon strong-armed into a tuber carry over someone's shoulder. Specifically, Slyvarin's. Mathis has no choice, again, but to let go of Rinian but this time he lets out a sound that is distorted by the fact that his voice was on the teetering cusp of changing. Precarious as it may be presently. It was meant to be something far more intimidating than his diminutive presence should rightfully allow, wriggling in protest with demands to be let down and not wanting to go. Go where? Over there, apparently. "No we don't have to talk, put me down!" Struggle, struggle. What had Meion just walk in on? Chaos. Risali would have been proud.

Rinian starts in surprise as Matty is hoisted up, but this time she doesn't follow. Slyvarin said he wouldn't hit him, and just wanted to talk. And Rinian is a firm believer in talking things out if at all possible. She's not betraying him, really! She watches them go, worried, and then moves closer to Teinon. Matty's made a mess on this side of the tree, much to her dismay. But there are some useful things, like a bag. That she holds open to Teinon so he can free his hands. When she hears another voice she gives Meion such a look of HELP. Men, being all emotional. Help!

Step one. Assess the situation, Meion. Sylvarin is hauling Mathis off over his objections, and promises of a lack of violence. Those usually imply that the promising party might want to employ violence, but. It's not so big an area that she wouldn't hear if a fight broke out. So that's okay, maybe, she guesses. Rinian looks surprised, concerned, but there's no urgency in the way she's acting. It is unlikely that any bones are broken, fires are started, or life support systems have begun loudly counting down to doom. So that's okay too, maybe? Teinon has a pile of fruit in his arms. Issue: that will reduce arm mobility. Under normal circumstances, that might be acceptable, but Teinon uses his arms to communicate. So. That's not okay. Meion heads for Teinon, arms out. "Let me take those." That will mean piling them on her clipboard, but so it goes.

Make some juice! Just kidding, Sylvarin will be back to claim the fruit quite soon. With any luck it will just be a matter of minutes. Despite the disapproval, the baker seems quite determined to get out whatever he has to say. The boy is put down and the baker just looks at him for a moment. There's a deep sigh from Sylv as he runs his hand through the thick crop of dark hair that rests atop his head. Those brightly colored eyes glance down at Mathis now and one corner of his lips pulls down just slightly. "I don't know if it's your first crush," a pause, "but can I hazard a guess and say it's the first /man/ you've had a crush on?" His voice is low, nothing more than a quiet drawl so that at least some of the conversation can be kept private. There's a /very/ high chance that he's just making things worse here. "I'm sorry that I got in the middle of it." Quite literally! "I've been there, I get what you're going through. So I /know/ you don't want to talk. And I /know/ I'm the last person you want to hear this from, but you're a mess." He's not the type to sugar coat things despite his trade. "So if you /do/ want to talk when things settle down, I'll be around." Again, literally, because white knot! And frankly if the teenager is about to punch or kick him the baker isn't going to dodge. He'll take it because Sylv /is/ kind of being an ass right now, though he means well.

Teinon is presented with two options for getting rid of the fruit, so he doesn't even seem to pay attention to where they end up. Maybe it's a little of both! In any case, they are gone, and his hands are free, but he still looks… Well, it's hard to decipher what that expression means. Probably somewhere on the spectrum of humiliation. He signs repeated apologies as soon as his hands are free, backing away slowly to fetch his notebook.

But, but WHY doesn't Rinian follow? She was going to before! Mournfully Mathis casts a long look towards his fellow woodcrafter, catching that worry etched into her young face, and he might have called out to her if she wasn't headed for Teinon afterwards. Et tu Brute? Et tu? The boy didn't know Meion from a hole in the wall and so he wasn't expecting anything in particular from her at all. Yet, there she goes as well, heading off towards Teinon. What the actual heck guys? HE was the one in actual peril here being tuber carried off to his doom and possibly to be beat up. There was mention of punching! Now would be the perfect time for space renegades to attack and yet all that happens is that he's set back onto his feet directly into a corner and effectively body blocked. There was the benefit of being as far and away from the other as was possible, he didn't have to hear or see the women folk fussing over someone who had everything going for him. Unlike Mathis, who was, as Sylvarin is about to point out, a mess. Oh, there was plenty of breathing room, but none for escape. The man's sigh and the motion of hand through hair draws the boy's attention upwards, crossing his rail-thin arms over his unimpressive chest, chin all stuck out defensively. At least the tears had stopped, far too distracted by how put off he was being manhandled and carted off against his will. At mention of first crush, well, that brings a bright blossom of color across Mathis's cheeks. A second later his jaw firms up and he looks off across the sea of plants to his left. Indicator: True. Slyvarin's guess that it was his first man-crush? Tawny lashes fall and his eyes dart dagger-like back the other candidate's direction, then away as the flush deepens. Indicator: Also true. See, it was like they were having a conversation. Isn't it wonderful? However, as the questions falls away and there is yet more sympathy, but this time from the other party? A scoff, "Right," is muttered under the boy's breath, shifting the stiffness of his weight from one foot to the other. Somewhere during the rest of it, he rolls his eyes and pointedly stares. "You get that I'm thirteen, right?" Yeah dude, everything is a mess, not just right this second.

Rinian gathers the fruit in the bag, perhaps with Meion's help, but either way the fruit is dealt with. Teinon is freed and Matty is still alive and not beaten up..physically. She looks over to her young friend, worry still evident in her eyes. Something. Must…do..something. So she starts picking up all the various things Matty had brought and dumped behind the tree. She even organizes as she goes, so hopefully she can get them returned to their proper places. Poor Matty will have nothing to throw at the renegades if she keeps it up.

As soon as the fruit is away and Rinian is off to start organizing the things Mathis left behind, Meion gives Teinon a look. It's the kind of look that says I want an explanation and are you all right at the same time. And there under all the fruit is her clipboard. Right. She'd had a reason to be here, at some point. But what was it even? Whatever she had been doing is so completely lost that it might as well have happened last week.

"You're right. You're thirteen. You don't look like you're struggling at all. Of course you don't need anyone to talk to about this kind of thing." Those blue-green eyes don't flinch for a moment under the young man's stare even as sarcasm becomes evident in the baker's voice. "In any case, the offer still stands." And it seems that this is where he will leave the conversation because the man is heading back towards Teinon and Meion. Hands reach out in a silent offer to take the bag of fruits. "I'm sorry for leaving you with all this and…" Sylv trails off, his words a low murmur meant for Teinon though he doesn't try to meet his eyes just yet. Again, he apologizes though this time it's quite clumsily signed. He's /really/ not used to that yet. "So…I'm Sylvarin." He's trying to return to his relatively relaxed self with the introduction in Meion's direction, but there's a certain tension still in his shoulders. Is Teinon still backing away? The baker seems sufficiently distracted with trying to figure this out and now he's eyeing the lift himself. Perhaps time for him to make a quick get away? He'll gauge the situation a little longer before deciding.

Teinon shakes his head at Meion, but it's super unclear whether that means he's not willing to offer an explanation, or that he's not all right. Probably a good dose of the latter, all things considered. He scoops up the notebook, dusting it off carefully. Then Sylvarin is there, and signing apologies, and Tein grabs his hands and pushes them away, as though to reject the apology. On second thought, after considering the notebook, he shoves it at Syl. Then he produces a cloth napkin from his pocket and shoves it along with the notebook. Syl will understand the gesture, at least! Then he signs something that seems just a bit aggressive toward Syl, and turns to pace off toward the Cryo-Storage.

Brows crease exponentially as the baker speaks, "Wait. Wait. Wait." Body turning, mostly towards Sylvarian now, Mathis's arms drop if only to lift his hands in a air pushing motion towards the man, "Let me get this straight…you want ME to talk to YOU about MY crush on YOUR boyfriend?" Yes, he's making quite the leap into assumption here, but from what he'd seen the writing was on the wall. Then there is this look, a look that needs no description or explanation. Mathis thinks that Sylvarin is crazy, woo-woo, loopy, out of his sharding-mind. Talk about a conflict of interest. Several blinks of disbelief later, "Yeah, OKAY. I'll get right on that." The kid did not need help with his sarcasm, that's for sure. All that was missing was a 'bitch please', some finger snapping, and a waved hand of dismissal. Perhaps some jelly-neck action. Instead, the kindness of the baker is tossed back in his face with another roll his eyes matched to perfection with another scoff, and they're parting ways. Sylvarin to the grouping of growing candidates and Teinon, and Mathis to find his personal satchel. Muttering and grumbling to himself in disgruntled disbelief (because the audacity of some people) the boy starts shoving wood and wood-carving tools into his bag, shaking his head.

Rinian watches sadly as Teinon goes off one way, and Sylv looks like he's going to as well, and Matty. She just wanted everybody to get along and they just…aren't. She tries to think of something, anything to call them back, to get them to sort it out, to make it better…but she's got nothing. Its not like she has a lot of experience to fall back on, not being much older than Matty. Suddenly and without another word she scrambles up the tree in earth-squirrel fashion until she's high enough to block everything below her, around her, above her, with its green foliage.

In one thirteen-year-old's roar, Meion finally gets the context she needed. It's boy trouble. Of course it's boy trouble. She revises down the odds of actual violence, revises up the odds of lots and lots and lots of people crying at each other, and observes Rinian's tree-scaling exercise with more than a small pang of jealousy. If she could hide in the foliage, she probably would, too. Her face makes it very clear: she's willing to decode long-lost data archives and uncover the secrets of who-knows-what, but this relationship thing? She is not the one you want. But of course she's here, and everybody is so young and it would probably be really irresponsible of her to just leave them to it. So she freezes up and just stares as emotional grenades are lobbed.

Sylvarin looks rather startled when his hands are not only shoved away but suddenly filled with the piece of cloth and notebook. His lips pull down words in a hard frown, the expression deepening at Teinon's signing. It takes him a moment to register Teinon is /leaving/ but when he does the baker is not far behind. Quick strides take him towards Cryo-stroage as well, Mathis' words registering in the back of his mind but not acknowledged as of right now. It seems that he's quite focused on one thing at the moment, so it's with hands full of various objects that he disappears.

Nessalyn has been absent for much of today, likely pulling wires out of walls and inspecting systems because knowledge. It's equally likely that she has simply been casing the joint for opportunities to cause mischief. She's still going to hit that Big Friendly (Gravity) Button sometime, guys. JUST WAIT FOR IT. But as she steps off the lift into this arena of green, she looks genuinely surprised to find that she's not alone. It's almost as though she expected that the rest of her fellow candidates would be gone by now. But no, they're still here. "My future husband has a boyfriend?" is asked, loudly. Hello, she's here to catch the tail end of Mathis and Sylvarin's conversation and then 100% peace out, because HAHAHA AWKWARD CAMEOS. And also because her writer just realized she needs to make dinner. Nessalyn may or may not be back, but for now she does an about face and avoids her fellow candidates because she's just here to stir up trouble and not deal with the consequences.

Oh hey, look. It's Nessalyn. Saying things. Things that startle Mathis into stiffened stillness, staring long and hard after her even as she turns on her heel and walks right out again and onto the lift. WIFF. ZOOM. She's gone. Blink-blink-blink. Okay, that was…something. As if the jumble inside his head wasn't bad enough, now he was confused. Tenion liked Sylvarin, Sylvarin seemed to like Teinon but was engaged to Nessalyn. Man, if that was the grown-up world was like, peace out guys. Let the space renegades take him. Seriously, don't even fight them off. Snapping out of his reverie, Mathis remembers that he's mad, like really-really mad and continues on to stomp towards his possessions so that he could start packing up. Shove. Shove. Maybe there was someplace on the ship he could go where no one would think to look for him. Stuff. Stuff. Was there a deck he hadn't explored yet? He had to think. Shove some more. Thinking was hard when your world didn't make sense anymore. Mutter. Mutter. Who did Sylvarin think he was? Nessalyn wasn't enough for him? He had to have Teinon too? Growl. Shove. Stuff. So engrossed with this over packing, the shoving and stuffing of things into a bag not at all intended to hold that may things, he misses Rinian's squirrel impression, as well as Teinon relinquishing every token Sylvarin had ever given him then the both of them leaving. Which mean, ultimately, that when he looks up he finds that only Meion remains and she was looking like she wished she was anywhere but where she was just then. "Uh," Mathis's anger softens, brows knitting, "Where'd everyone go?"

Rinian finds a good v in the branches above, the right size for her small self and settles there. She completely misses Ness in and out. She can hear something down below but right now she just can't. Nope. Done. Too much. She could, if she wanted, pay attention and hear it, but she doesn't want to right now. She balances on her tushy with knees drawn up and arms around them to make a little Rin ball of unhappiness. Being stuck in space with tech was bad enough. But everyone all not getting along? Makes it all worse.

Events are processed in a semi-orderly fashion as Meion's thousand-yard stare increases. That shove of stuff from Teinon to Sylvarin: emotional, probably symbolic, negative connotation. Nessalyn's drive-by proclamation: attention-demanding, inflammatory, unlikely factual. Mathis packing his bag: angry, internally-focused, childish. Mathis asking her a question: … Wait. That one requires active response. Oh no. Meion pauses for long enough that she seems a little strange before her own face softens as well, just a little, and she tries to focus in on Mathis. "Um. That way." She points in the vague direction she recalls Teinon and Sylvarin heading, more or less. "Rin is still around somewhere." And there's something else she's supposed to ask in this situation - something her mom would have done. Right. She crouches, knees and arms wide as she faces Mathis at more-or-less his height. "Are you okay?" That's what mom would have asked, so it's probably a good plan.

Cielo must have missed the hive-like flurry of… conversation. But he can do this! He can be SOCIAL. After all, he's had two successful conversations with his fellow candidates. Aaaand a second after stepping off the lift he feels the energy of the room. It hits him hard enough he wobbles on his heels and stares wide-eyed. Uh. Gosh. No, no backing out now. He looks like he's wading into the deep end, bag clutched tight at his side, a certain smile on his face as he searches around for his veritable port.

Unaware of any internal dialog or it logical components, Mathis has nothing to go on other than the fact that she was standing there completely zoned out. What should he do? Vaguely he remembers something his foster-sister said about the signs of a stroke and not before too long he was checking for face-symmetry and slurred speech. Could he safely touch someone having a stroke? He couldn't remember. Put something between her teeth, watch her head? No, that was seizure. Ugh! Hands coming up and off his bag, taking a single step forward, "Uh, are you…" he begins to ask, watching her closely, so he notes when her face starts to change. But did it have symmetry?! Yes, in fact it did, and she was turning to look at him. A cold sensation works its way down his spine birthing goosebumps and making the hairs on the back his head stand up. He knew for a fact that she was not a ghost, because he'd seen her arrive from the lift and a ghost would have just materialized in place or shifted through the wall or something. Plus, you know, he'd also seen her talking to people as he was being carried off by Sylvarin. Still! Creep-factor ten billion times three. The gesture towards the lift draws hazel eyes that direction, noting the lift, and the boy works his jaw a bit before saying, "Yeah, okay." Cowards, they'd run off. Puffing out his chest some, Mathis looks back to Meion again, brows shooting upwards towards his hairline. "She is?" It's then that he's scanning the room, looking for Rinian, his expression one that was difficult to discern considering the conflicting emotions passing over it all at once. Should he call out to her? Narrow shoulders sink as he decides against it. No, if she was hiding, it was probably because she hated him for not being able to reconcile with everyone like she'd wanted. She didn't say as much, but he knew her very well. Meaning, on top of everything else that had gone on today, he'd lost his only real friend. Fingers twitch at his side, glancing back towards his bag, and the desire to make one (a friend) out of one of the scraps it contained became one hard to resist. A bad coping mechanism, but one nonetheless. Movement out of the corner of his eye draws his attention back to Meion, watching without really seeing her again until she was crouched before him and asking him something that was so like his foster-mother that the tears return, filling his vision before they spill down his freckle specked cheeks. "No…" he answers automatically. Nothing about any of this was okay. And Cielo, poor guy, no would blame him if he did decide to leave. What even was this he was about to walk into?

Rinian would probably have some words for Matty if she knew his thoughts. As one can't lose her as a friend that easily! Well, he'll just have to find that out later. She rests her forehead against her knees and closes her eyes. Maybe if she just stays there quietly she'll wake up and find out the whole thing has been an awful dream, and she'll be back in her own bed. Scary guy won't be a candidate, and everyone will be getting along. No one will be stuck in space and…why? Why are they stuck in space. She lifts her head to rest her chin on her knees instead as she considers that question. It had to have been on purpose, but why? She thinks to what she's observed about the Weyrleaders thus far and doesn't think it was to be mean. She quietly tries to sort her thoughts through that line of reasoning.
The risk of offering emotional availability is that one might end up taking you up on it. Time to double down on the awkward! Meion just stays there, offering a hug, terribly uncertain whether she's doing this sort of thing right. Did she just make Mathis cry? That would fit with her track record. She's just going to have to barrel forward now, some sort of terrible unsubtle demolition gear plowing into the fragile world of Other People's Feelings. She's trying to hide how nervous she is; really she is. She's the adult here, right? She's supposed to be able to make everything better, and then go find a quiet corner before she falls apart. She's not terrible at hiding it, though the perceptive might notice that her shoulders are tensed to the point of solidity and her jaw is clenched.

Cielo stands there for a moment longer. No, no he's not going to leave. Even if he hasn't the SLIGHTEST of what he's getting into, he hurries over to Mathis. "Hey hey hey, are you alright?" In a measured and practice infirmary-volume voice. At least if someone is in clear and obvious dismay, something of his healery instincts kick in. Wrong species, but.. still. Sure, he has no social grace, but this is another way it shows.

Meion had briefly made Mathis consider life after death and quite a few life-threatening medical conditions, but no she wasn't the reason that he'd started crying. As much as the kid adored his best friend and how she seemed so grown up now, he had no illusions as to her actual age. Rinian was only three turns older than him, a child in her own right, no matter what Pernese society had to say about it. Meion though? Far closer to a mother figure than anyone else he'd encountered since leaving home, since he'd been plucked from the Fortian lake-shore by that boisterous mustard colored gold and dropped into a sea of proverbial strangers. The offered hug is taken, thin pale arms encircling Meion's neck, as he steps his whole body in to curl it around her as best he could without actually crawling into her lap. Not that she had one in her crouched position, but still. He'd yet to do this to date, least not where anyone could see or hear him, but Mathis dissolves quickly from there into soft sobs. Life sucked so hard right now and what he wanted more than anything was the woman that he thought of as his mother. Meion, of course, was not her but she'd totally do in a pinch. He doesn't notice in his upset that her shoulders and jaw more closely resembled steel than flesh, far more interested in the mothering kindness she'd so readily extended to him. The rush of Cielo forward barely garners a response, well, if you discount the deepening of all that crying. Man, could things possibly get worse? Yes, yes they could…because space renegades.

Rinian really was trying to tune out the sounds, and focus on something besides space and emotions. But even up in her leafy aerie she can hear her friend crying. She quietly slithers down a few branches until she can see, but it seems her friend found someone to be a better friend than she was. Back up she goes, with just a faint rustling of branches and perhaps a leaf or two drifting down to note the passage.

The nice thing about hugging a sobbing little boy is that it makes very few assumptions about the position of one's head. So while arms squeeze tight around Mathis in the best emulation of a reassuring hug she can manage, she's pivoting neck to look toward where she heard Cielo, with a look of I have no idea what I'm doing desperation in her eyes. He's a healer, right? Dragonhealer, yes, but… at least maybe they taught him something about taking care of troubled youngsters. All she learned in her crafthall was about how to coax finicky terminals back to operation, and she is reasonably certain that percussive maintenance is not an approved technique for use on other people, even if she's seen it employed a time or two.

Oh, Cielo. He frowns and curls his fingers upon having just made things worse. Alas, Mathis has made Meion his confidant for the moment. The hug? That is simply what must be. The young man tilts his head towards Meion as if to say, 'no no, you've got this,' because really causing that separation will make it worse. "It's alright," he repeats. There's a bottom to those wells, sooner or later, and comfort came first!

Yeah, no. Meion was not a better friend than Rinian, Mathis had just met the woman. It just so happened that right then she said what needed to be said and gave him what he needed. No way would he have cried like this in front of Rin; shown her how very little he'd changed in the few turns that had passed since he'd seen her at the crafthall. He would have rather died. But then again, were they still friends? He didn't know. Everything was so different than it had been just a couple of days ago, and he certainly wasn't going to be returning to Pern the same person he was when he'd left it. He knew things now that he didn't before and what he wanted beyond gentle hugs and soft reassurance was to be alone to think about all of it and consider what it meant for his future. Mathis has no idea that Meion, through all this and his quiet sobbing, was making panicked faces at Cielo and that Cielo was passing up his chance to be her parenting coach. Opportunity lost man, cause shortly after offers up his own attempt at comforting, the boy suddenly releases the computer crafter candidate. Shoving his hands against his face to forcibly wipe the tears away, he turns and heads for his bag, yanking it off where it sat with a grunt of effort and momentary flash of surprise and irritation for how heavy it was. Shortly thereafter, he was breezing past them towards the lift without so much as a thank you, stepping onto it the moment it arrived and with that he's gone.

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