Intent and Result

Xanadu Weyr - Training Grounds
A wide, grassy expanse, nestled into the gentle bowl shape where something's taken a bite out of the mountain. It's high above the level of the beach, and there's a good eastern view of the lake and a long path leading down to that sandy shore. Granite cliffs surround it on the other sides.

While much of the grounds are left in their natural state, one area has been trampled and trodden by enough feet that the grass struggles to grow. A running track circles a set of equipment - straw dummies with wooden frames, obstacles of various sizes and shapes, and targets for flaming, archery, and whatever else.

There's a dragon-sized opening to the south that leads to the cavernous weyrling barracks, and a smaller tunnel to the northeast - large enough for dragons newly emerged from the sands, but quickly outgrown by hatchlings who are then forced to take the long way around - at least, until they learn to spread their wings and fly. Between them in both position and size, a jagged crack in the stone leads to a dim cave with the sound of water.

Winter has ARRIVED, mid-afternoon and the night has left the ground with a blanket of snow that has quickly turned into muddy brown sludge; due to large draconic feet melting and combining the icy water. This meant some pairs woke up and went right back to sleep, even delaying breakfast several hours to avoid the cold wetness of it all. After many excuses, such as not having the appropriate attire and being sensitive to the cold. Going as far as to fake sniffle, the amount of healer attention that might require was deemed much too much trouble, AFTER all of that the two have emerged from the barracks. Evi is wearing pants, for once, and has been bundled up in two shirts, a sweater, gloves, and a hat. None of them nearly bright enough to be her own handmade creations. Once outside, the two of them begin to stretch, "You have to stretch them all the way out." Nei turns her dark and light and nothing in between form towards her rider and cocks her head if a dragon could look vexed. "LIKE THIS." Both of Evi's arms are splayed out, and despite herself, she is giggling. In response, Nei takes both her forelimbs and spreads them as far as they will reach. SMARTASS. "I will run, you aren't invited." HUFF. There's a tone of sarcasm and brattiness to the rider's voice that's not usually present, but survival means learning the field, and she's catching on. Turning her back on the striped brat, the well-bundled girl, though lately she's inched closer to being a woman, is jogging. Slowly, but there's actual form to her movements, and a candence, limbs coordinating enough that now her attempts do not warrant any extra staring.

WINTER IS COMING. No, wait, winter has come. Some avoided it. Some embraced it. GUESS WHICH GLORIOTH AND HIS F'YRFULLY (UN)FORTUNATE LIFEMATE ARE? Oh, and Roderick, can't forget the little grotesque looking brown clinging to bronze headknobs as the bronze comes running in to the training grounds from the direction of the path that leads to places farther and stranger than these familiar places (a.k.a. the main clearing and elsewhere). Ever since F'yr's healer restrictions were lifted at the start of the month, the pair have been less and less present in the local vicinity except when they're required to be there for some group activity or during the regular training times. The jog F'yr is doing in sweater and thick pants along behind the mud-and-snow-and-is-that-red-stuff-blood-or-not (it is, probably left-over from breakfast) bronze looks substantially less objectionable and painful to the big blond than it did in the early weeks and months. « ONWAAAAaaaaAAAAaaaaAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARD! » and off-key heroic music predictably accompany Glorioth in his arrival and he skiiiids to a halt, booming his delighted laughter some distance from Neifeth. Per usual, his wings are flared just so as to throw him to the most glorious effect his misleadingly handsome exterior can be put to. F'yr catches up, giving a wave to Evi even as he passes her going the other way to give the bronze a once-over. "What reward will you have today, Glori?" Evi isn't the only one who's been learning courtesy of the necessity of survival.

The arrival of Glorioth, with his firelizard friend, the loud voice mixed with the terrible music brings an instant frown to Evi's face her lips set in a line, a deep sigh that starts in her belly and hisses out. Brown-green eyes dart at the pair and then to the sky, picking up speed as muscles loosen, and breathing moves from hitched to rhythmic. She is not fast, but there's stamina in her that was not present previously, following the muddy path around the 'track' she slows to a stop near F'yr and Glorioth. When speaking to Nei, not only do her eyes glaze over, but her head often falls back on her shoulders, neck fully extended, and chin pointed towards the sky. "F'yr and um, Glorioth. Aren't you cold?" All of this is said with no eye contact, and it's nearly mumbled as the weird position is maintained. "Glori, would you like to.. help me? I um. I have a quest." Neifeth prowls over, not particularly fast or close, and the slight orange tinge to her eyes speaks to her reluctance. The set to Evi's face is resolute, her lip puckered slightly forward, gaze absolutely focused, and body statue still. Neifeth joins in, «Mine is sure you can do it, but. I am not convinced.» As far as commentary goes, this might be considered polite her words loud, sharp, direct, and demanding without carrying the malice they usually do. Every word is met with a slight sparkle of gold, subtle and quiet. Somehow more dangerous than her standard colorful displays, a mental marauder on the border, stalking. «Have you ever seen a caprine kid? DELICIOUS, but quick. I need one.» Evi tilts her head at F'yr, and twitches her lips, jutting her chin to the side in an 'over there' motion. Maybe he notices, perhaps he doesn't.

« A BATH, MY F'YRVENT FRIEND, » Glorioth declares with another booming laugh. His head begins to swing in the direction fo the dragon pool only to shift his attention to the oncoming green and her rider. His noble pose doesn't shift. Since he's already in a state of readiness, despite his recent arrival, he doesn't need to reposition to be ready for anything. Anything apparently includes laughter at Neifeth. « Then yours is nearly as clever me and mine. You still have some learning to do, my shifty-eyed sister. » His head tips slightly. It's probably suppose to be to F'yr when his mind flares with a gout of fire that is particularly sulfurous, and he asks, « What in valor's name is she doing? » of Evi's odd pose. F'yr's lips press together denying smile and laughter and after a moment he clears his throat. "What do you need help with, Evi?" The man's voice is even and the inquiry is direct. His eyes flick to the bronze whose laughter booms even louder. « Ahahahahahahahaa hahahahahaha hahahahahahahahah ahahahahaha. Oh, but were there a caprine kid here, I would surely slay it bravely, honorably, and with immense heroism, » as befits a helpless caprine kid. F'yr's lips tip down in a frown and the look blue eyes pin Evi with is wary at best. "What's going on, Evi?" The tone has shifted from not quite playing along but willing to discuss to something that's no nonsense and holds an edge that is just shy of sharp, something that's in that very firm adult range.

There's no nobility in Neifeth, not the type you can view with your eyes. Grace unsurpassed, death to anything she can put her claws into, a mind that twists and turns, a tongue that can tear people apart in many ways. Beautiful of mind, wicked of 'mouth,' but subtle? No. Noble? No. «My slow, brother THAT is the quest. Finding it. They keep them somewhere.» Suddenly Evi hears Glorioth making fun of her and snorts, "I was.. trying something. I thought they could amuse each other. Nei likes to eat kids, but they're fast. I thought, maybe Glori would haze for her." The voice is strong, her eyes speak of something more, and they focus so intently on F'yr. Ignoring his tone well at first, but then sighing and looking sad. The onslaught of sadness seems to have triggerd Neifeth, slinking forward and placing her front leg in front of Evi. With a practiced wrist motion, Evi is gently scooted back to the safety of her lifemates chest, hand slowly creeping into the fold between leg and chest, arms wrapping around the limb for security. Scary green bodyguard mode activated.«Only Fools laugh that much. Mine has the worst ideas. She wants me to cooperate. Probably because of the place before, and the people, she once was something, and now she is another thing. She does not have any interest in his nethers. It is not genital bumping, she wants human companionship. What have humans ever done for her? Nothing.» Neith rarely ever shares very much; when she opens her mouth, it's almost all rude comments. Somehow, whatever Evi is feeling bubbles right over today. Probably the lack of food in her stomach. «I will find my own kid, OBVIOUSLY, and you will go play with your bath toys.» There's a sadness about Evi that had been gone since impression. Neifeth croons to her, and she shakes her head and plasters on a fake smile.

"Evi," F'yr does not do the other weyrling the discourtesy of using her pre-impression name, but his expression is solemn and his tone matches. "My dragon is not permitted to hunt or kill live prey." He says the sentence with deliberate neutrality. « Only because they are afraid I will decimate the herds. » Glorioth chimes in with a snort of his own. He's sure they're right about that (they're not; that's not even the real reason why), but he doesn't see the problem. Only F'yr isn't done, his voice is largely robbed of feeling but a small amount of annoyance meshed with disappointment does slip in as he continues, "It would be unkind to put him to a task like that." Not to mention that there is nothing in it for Glorioth the way that it was presented and while 'quest' may sometimes be a magic word, it's not if the quest doesn't present some benefit to the completely self-absorbed only apparently but not actually heroic dragon. Evi isn't the only one who receives this carefully cultivated tone, nor the slight twitch in the man's jaw. Glorioth gets it next. "Glorioth, there's no need to be rude about whatever Evi needs to do physically to feel comfortable. It's not your business." The young man won't excuse the baby for being a baby even if he can't stop him from being a baby. What he can do is teach, so here that goes. "Every person and dragon is a little different. What each one does with their body is their own business." « Except when it's not, » Glorioth's snort comes with an extra loud clashing of swords. "Except when it's not," F'yr agrees with a sigh (that's probably about human companionship and possibly genital bumping, but this isn't). His hands come up and rub across his face. "There are rules for a reason," that's to all three. "Just because Neith receives different treatment and is given different rules doesn't mean you need to make it harder for the rest of us to follow them. Friends support their friends, whatever their position," which might explain why the big blond hasn't pointed out the inequalities in this weyrlinghood thus far. And now it's Neith's turn, briefly, "Human companionship is important. It's not always easy. Sometimes things that seem like a good idea aren't. Keep it simple." Beat. "And the only genitals that concern me right now are his, and where he's going to put the next load of shit I'm going to have to shovel." That's a joke. It's a ha-ha-weep joke, but at least he's trying to lighten the mood, a little. Glorioth is bored by this point of course and pushes his feet into the icy muddy mess at his feet, making a bigger mess in the process, but at least he's not flinging it at anyone yet.

Silence, Evi melding her body into her lifemates cyan chest and snuggling tightly in the way a waterfowl type avian might hide in its mother's breast. The news that helping them push caprine's around might not be fair to Glorioth seems to be a REAL revelation to Evi, maybe her plan was half-cocked. As F'yr speaks, her eyes grow larger, shiny with tears that threaten to come. Refusing to blink, she stares hard at F'yr, waiting for the emotions to dissipate. "I wasn't thinking. I wanted. I want Nei to have friends. She doesn't like doing most of what the others enjoy. " The most hopeless battle ever, possibly. Neifeth seems to dislike all other dragons equally and has not shown much interest in making nice. «A preposterous project. Nonsense. I have you. What do they offer me?» There's no hiding the total disgust in her tone, the concept of liking anyone other than Evi is foreign. «I am not here for them, WHY do they matter? WHY. WHEN they will just leave you to die? All people have done for you, my head bitch is hurt you. They want you dead, they have tried. No more. Boss up, Evi darling. We have work to do.» Neifeth's adamant words are wrapped in brambles and darkness, ominous and dark as pitch. Evi shakes her head at her lifemate, even when scolding she has the dulcet, syrupy sweetness of a mother. "This has nothing to do with genitals, you could TRY for me. Play with someone, run around, do something that's not me." Neifeth snorts long, flicking the thoughts away mentally. "Sorry, F'yr, Glorioth." Use of that word gets the largest growl from Neifeth, feral and loud «No.» Evi turns to F'yr, "Let us stop talking about um, genitals, and sometimes people and dragons are wrong and owe people APOLOGIES. I.. am sorry that we have to do so much shoveling too." Shaking her head with a tiny half-laugh that becomes a groan. "I.. if you think of anything, I can't be her only source of entertainment forever." «You can, we have forever. » They do, Evi has forever as the pet project of Neifeth's.

F'yr listens. That essential Fyr trait hasn't changed whether he's Stefyr, Fyr, or F'yr. His blue eyes are serious, watchful and intense as they follow both the movements and the words, human and dragon as much as any are available to him. "It's a good thing to have friends." He says, but softly. It's a kind thing, this admission that might otherwise be fairly obvious, but it means something. "You know I'm your friend," in so much as friendship is even a thing for weyrlings. "You know I wouldn't leave you." He looks right at Neifeth and if she wants them, there's the laundry list of memories through F'yr's lens for her to grasp and see of all the times he came to her lifemate's aid: the time in the caverns that he talked of families made not born into, the time he and Evi spent with the feeding ground pens with the baby animals (oops) as therapy after a bad shake touching the eggs, the time he carried her bodily wrapped in his towel trying to get her to the infirmary because he thought she was sick, the time he checked on her after the cliff jump, the time he'd stayed with her when she'd been scared and had gotten her to scream out some of what was locked inside, and the time that he carried her in the haunt after she'd vomited, when he gave her his canteen and told her to keep her eyes closed, that he would keep her safe and the feeling of his determination to do so. F'yr doesn't need to explain anything to Neifeth if she looks; he has a bona fide track record when it comes to not leaving Evi in a bad situation. Unfortunately for both humans, Glorioth chimes in with his own grumbly, « I don't see the point of making friends either. » He has tiny Roderick who chirps at him. « Quite right, my fine fellow. We do well on our own. » So that means Glorioth has two friends. Okay, so he can also usually count on a couple of the other dragonets to get into trouble with him, but that's not friendship, that's mutual self-interest, isn't it? It is on his end, anyway. "Maybe Nei just needs to find the right dragons. Maybe they just don't happen to be here," which might be F'yr's subtle way of apologizing that his lifemate is not more pliable or naturally interested in such effeminate sentimentalities as genuine friendships might require.

Neifeth is not a soft creature, nothing about her lends itself to being that way. From the moment of hatching, she was and is, a predator. Pure and simple. Though it's clear, Evi needs Nei. The balance between the two is second to none, the overly empathetic, overly empathic, loving, kind, PUSHOVER that was Evangeline has slowly become someone who can and will be able to fight off whatever the world throws at them. With that being said, as F'yr shares his memories of Evi, Nei DEVOURS THEM. There's a bright forest in her mind, a pink fog that wraps around colorful yellow trees; if it didn't all look so alive, you'd think it was a children's drawing. Every memory is examined, there's something beyond alien about this green. The distinct idea that ONLY Evi matters has ever mattered is presented to F'yr. Speaking only to him, she reaches out, gentle, soft, her mind a breeze smelling of pine. «You shared something, so I will share too.» Evi is standing next to her lifemate and wrinkles her brow, looking up at her and shrugging. SIlently Nei returns to F'yr; the memory she presents is in several pieces. Evi sitting in a home, the walls shaking, the look of horror on what could be her mother's face. The impression of a massive sinkhole outside of the house, a stick runner slowly being sucked into the ground. A man in riding leathers, strapping two young children, and then an adult man on the dragon. One can only assume these are Evi's memories because they are in the first person. Then darkness, water on the floor, the walls slanted, cracks along the ceiling. A young boy sitting on her lap, Evi whispering kind words. Lastly, Nei shares every emotion, sadness, fear, loss, and last abandonment. «Why should she ever be kind to anyone again? Look what that did. Your kindness is not unnoticed. » This might be the sweetest thing Nei ever says to F'yr, and it's said in a tone that has no hint of mocking. «Do not tell anyone, because no one will ever believe you wherface.» And she's back! "We are friends. I'm.. not very good at a lot right now. I don't have any time to think about anything." At F'yr's words, Nei snorts, shaking her head. «Mine has one of those, she's small and looks like jewelry. MAYBE if other dragons made suitable fashion accessories.» At least Glori receives a small smile from Evi and one eyebrow up to F'yr, "AT least we are in this together, right?" Finding joy is her specialty, she giggles and scrunches up her nose. "Do you like all firelizards, Glorioth? Or just that one?" Doing her best to bridge the gap, because that might be her job forever.

The memories are glossy, not like they've been maliciously manipulated so much as they have been offered as the surface of a much deeper lake, all the essentials without much in the way of underlying feelings save for that one of his determination; it's the broad strokes - baby safe, sort of. It would be easy to assume that maybe F'yr is just that shallow, what with his being a wherbrain and all that. It could be that F'yr simply doesn't know how to or wish to share more deeply with a dragon that isn't his own. It's hard to say in turn just how much of Neifeth's offering actually penetrates his thick skull. Obviously something does because F'yr's expression turns from solemn to grave and he straightens slightly. His Adam's apple bobs and Glorioth's tail swishes in irritation (you can tell its irritation because there go those tell-tale eyes whirling into those colors). His lips press together and he looks to Neifeth to say, "Look in her thoughts. Gently," he can't help but impress this word, "See for yourself that not all people do things like that. Find the good ones and you'll understand the gift she gives that is the benefit of the doubt." That he gives, even to Neifeth who has proven herself less than kind more than once. Glorioth is not that nice, he has no doubts about anything, anything at all, so he has no benefits of those to offer. That might explain why he rumbles low and threatening. « My bath, F'yrfully forgetful. A hero's just reward, » he's quoting F'yr back at himself and the man grins a grin that's too bright, but then, that's the dragon he helplessly loves. "Of course. Roderick is special," F'yr offers to Evi briefly on his dragon's behalf. Ugly, unfortunate Roderick, misshapen and strange from the shell. It might be Glorioth's fault, that, but we won't talk about that now, not when heroes need their baths and oilings and other compensations for questing well quested. "We'll see you." Glorioth isn't the right target for Evi's friendship making plans, but F'yr is game, as always, even after hiccups like this one. Then the bronze pair are off in the direction of the pool.

Throughout most of the sharing, Evi is peacefully oblivious, though her head tilts to one side when Nei quietly asks about half-moon. The dragon well aware this is a sore subject for her rider, but even mentioning it brings flashes of the incident. Tilting her head up at her lifemate, she asks, “What.. are you doing?” Every word is heavy with suspicion, eyeing her newfound fae friend and furrowing her brow. After revealing this info to F’yr, Neifeth goes radio silent, pulling back entirely mentally but stretching her neck up and forward, placing her head level with F’yr’s body and angling her dark lime highlighted muzzle down to indicate that she IS listening. With mounting agitation in Glorioth, the confusion grows, prompting the girl to disentangle herself from the green’s embrace and look between the two of them. “What did she say?” Is whispered quietly, brow furrowing and mouth partially ajar. “Do things like what?” Is aimed towards her lifemate, “Nei, you didn’t.” Open-mouthed terror is followed by hard headshakes, “That- those. She didn’t ASK to share them, she asked a question she knew would make me think of them. Those are PRIVATE.” Words come out in a river of quiet, horrified, sound her voice squeaking and breaking. “I, we, you are running LAPS forever and ever. NEITH. You are. No caprine kids. None. Ever. I’ll make you eat barracks food.” Two can play at this game, and her dragon-child crossed a big line. «Bitch, you can’t treat me like that. YOU ARE NOT HONEST EITHER, EVER. You wanted to tell him. I AM HELPING YOU, BE GRATEFUL.» Woo buddy, no one, and I mean no one wants in on this mess. There’s a sharpness in Evi, a fake smile plastered on her face. “I am sorry for her. Enjoy your bath Glorioth, Roderick.” Very rarely is Evi angry; all of that giddy and happiness turned to fury, and the energy being put in is the same. “LAPS. NOW.” Is growled at Nei, and Evi gives a sharp salute. Anger provides renewed vigor and feet pound ground fast and hard, teeth gritted, and gaze narrowed. Nei ducks her head and prowls after, a tad awkward as her tail is longer and requires extra effort to hold up, and every few strides it gets in her way, causing her to flick it in annoyance. If mama ain’t happy, no one's happy.

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