Warmer than Outside

Xanadu Weyr - Caverns
A massive cavern in it's own right, this one has been skillfully adapted for human habitation. The high ceilings have been painted a light, soft ivory, as are the walls where numerous tapestries hang to provide brilliant color and insulation from the stone. The floor has been left in its natural state, pale pink granite speckled through with glittering mica and dark flecks of basalt, leveled carefully but kept sufficiently rough to avoid slips.
The cavern itself is loosely divided into areas, each one set up to be suitable for some segment of the Weyr's population. The most frequently occupied area, however, is the one near the Kitchens where tables of varying sizes provide a place to sit down and eat or chat and a buffet of consumables is almost always kept stocked. Its plain that on most days, this area wouldn't accommodate anywhere near the full population of the Weyr and equally plain that on such occasions when a formal meal is laid out, tables are appropriated from all the other areas.
A big fireplace is set into the wall near the Kitchens as well, several comfortable chairs nearby providing haunts for elderly residents or riders who like a good view of all that happens. Rugs cover the floor in strategic spots, all of them abstract or geometric in design and most in the softly neutral colors of undyed wool.

Derin enters the caverns, bundled up in his thickest coat, lowering the hood from pinked cheeks as he enters into the hopefully warmth of the cavern. Of course he makes sure to stamp the various snow and ice from his boots before moving towards one of the hearths, "Cold cold, fardling too cold fer outdoor work." He mutters, fiddling with his gloves to try and get them off, thrusting his hands up towards the fire when he finally does so. His mind is on one thing and one thing only, and that's getting warmed up, and it's not until he can once again feel his face and his fingers that he finally casts dark eyes around the area to see who might be gathered and, well, what might be available for warming from the inside out.

The caverns are warmer than outside! … it's a start. The fire is roaring, but the gusts of wind when the door is opened are frigid, and there's only so much a fire can do about them. Now is when an assist from the central heating system would come in handy. The few people still around are mostly bundled up in sweaters and jackets, moreso the further they get from the fire. Soriana is one of them, hands shoved in the pockets of her jacket as she talks to one of the cooks who's out from the kitchen stirring a big pot of leftover stew… now, with indistinguishable chunks. It is, however, warm. There's steam and everything.

Derin is used to getting stuck with the leftovers, it's part of having such an odd schedule unfortunately, and even still he really should be out working and stuff, but a man has to keep from freezing his, well, you know how it goes. Dark eyes find the stew, and the miner finally leaves the warmth of the fire to head over towards the pot, still wrapped in his bulky jacket which only makes him look much bigger and more awkward than he is. "H'lo, s'that stew warm?" He asks the obvious question before taking up a bowl and proceeding to fill it with the warm, erm, mush. "Shards I hope they've somethin' stronger than klah." He mutters, giving Soriana and the pot stirrer a brief smile of greeting. "Stayin' outta th'cold?" He asks conversationally.

Some things are too important to be frozed off. Soriana keeps her fingers tucked away as she says, "It'd be easier for you, too," to the pot-tender in an earnest tone, and gets a considering frown and then a nod for her trouble. The cook glances to Derin, pausing in the stirring to let him scoop up his bowl, then giving the pot contents a final twirl before turning to head back to the kitchen. She pauses, glancing back to say to Sori, "We'll discuss it," before vanishing. Soriana nods to her, then looks back to Derin and hehs. "Think someone left… ah, here it is." She steps over to near the klah pot, and holds up a flask. It sloshes, so she extends it to Derin as she shrugs at his question. "Much's I can. There's been a bunch of injuries… minor stuff, but y'don't want a dragon with a hurt paw to limp on the ice and maybe fall down again, so…" she sighs.

Derin reaches to take the flask, giving a grin as he does so. "Ah, just what th'healer ordered, thanks." He says, uncorking the flask to take a swig of the liquid within. "Mmm, better." "Buncha injuries, huh? There're been planty of rescue work t'be had too, silly folks thinkin they kin handle th'cold, or slippin and fallin all over th'ice. I s'ppose dragons kin be just as bad." He chuckles a little. "Any word 'bout when th'heat'll be back on?" He asks. Well, she is in the caverns and she was talking to one of the cooks, the cooks always have news, right?

"Yeah, it's the same sorts of things. Dragons that think they can still hunt like usual, or that they'll be fine climbing up to their favorite sunning spot…" Soriana shakes her head, laughing ruefully. "I'm just glad they're grounded, or we'd be having worse than bruises and scrapes." She glances back toward the kitchens, but there's nobody emerging yet, so she returns her gaze to Derin. "I haven't heard… but I've heard it's bad. Like, the whole area, everybody that doesn't have a generator is just plain outta luck, back to fires and candles."

Derin nods, "I s'ppose they're a lot like their people. Aye, 'tis good that they're officially grounded or I think we'd have even more rescue to tend to." He glances out towards the clearing where his wher likely waits for him, they are supposed to be on duty right now afterall. "I know th'dens're freezin, I couldna sleep t'day. I think I might hafta see iff'n Bri still has room fer an extra body, maybe two, though Dersk seems t'be enjoyin' th'cold himself."

"Some dragons have more sense than their people," says Soriana. "Course, some have less, so it balances out." She grins, then follows Derin's gaze back to the frigid out-of-doors before nodding. "Dragonkin are pretty resilient to cold. They have to be, or between'd give them trouble." She tilts her head, considering, then nods. "Might be a good idea, that, if she's got some way to run her heater. Or even if not, more warm bodies and help tending the fire can't hurt!" She laughs. "I'm figuring I'll try and borrow a cot at the Annex tonight, we've got a generator and there's some extra heat from the sands."

Derin nods, "Very true, that. I s'ppose there has t'be a balance somewhere." The man chuckles softly. "I think Dersk likes th'cold better than th'warmth sometimes, but even he gets tired of it eventually, at least fer a day or so." He considers a moment. "I'm nay sure she has a generator, but I know she kin make a mean fire, much better'n I can." He laughs softly.

"Well, hopefully this won't last all that long, and Dersk won't have a chance to get tired," says Soriana with a grin, then nods about Bri's firebuilding skills. "Good enough, then! Kinda figures she'd be good at it, Bakercraft and all. Gotta know how to work the wood-fired ovens for… the sorts of things you cook in those." Whatever they are. Sori's not the cook here.

Derin nods agreement. "I think it should pass fairly quickly, or at least I hope. I'm ready t'get t'spring an' summer now, winter's, well, winter's overstayed its welcome." He takes another drink from the flask followed by a bite of the mush stew stuff, he's gotta eat to keep his energy up afterall. "She makes a mean breakfast." He admits, a tint of pink in his cheeks as he smiles easily.

"At least we've got a summer, not like High Reaches," says Soriana with a shake of her head. "But, yeah. Winter's fun, but I think we've had enough for now. Besides, every day the heaters are off is like a triple or quadruple day's worth." She grins, and then grins wider as Derin admits to breakfast-oriented knowledge of Bri. Scandalous! … or not, but hey. All she actually says, despite that grin, is, "I believe it. I've had her cookies and the like." Mmmmmgood.

Derin nods, "True, I've ne'er been away from Xanadu, but I heard High Reaches is cold all turn 'round." He shivers exaggeratedly. "Aye, tho I bet Jethaniel is workin' day an' night to try t'get th'heat runnin' 'gain. He's a pretty good worker." Hey, who says the man can't get along with other journeymen, it's just the other miner journeymen he doesn't exactly get along with. "At least we've still got th'sand tho, they seem t'be in perfect workin order for the moment." He chuckles at the widening grin at his mention of the junior's breakfast cooking expertise, so scandalous, especially coupled with the fact that he's admitted to sleeping in her hut before. But, well, at least him and the junior is better than him and an apprentice like before, right? He chuckles, the sound a deep rumble from his large chest. "M'brown Nibbles likes her cookies. Acourse, Nibbles likes pretty much anything that's food." He glances around as if looking for the fat walking(not flying) stomach.

"Believe what you hear," says Soriana of High Reaches with a shiver of her own. How come they're talking about the cold when it's frigied here? They should be talking about warm places! Igen! Ista! The tropical lands of sun and swelter. She nods at the mention of Jethaniel working, though it's with a slight frown. "Yeah, the sands are working." She'll give him that much. "There's some people camping out on the observation levels, since the generators are running there. If things aren't fixed by the time Seryth takes to those sands… well, that'll be interesting." But surely things will be back to normal long before that happens, right? Sori hehs at the mention of Nibbles, and nods. "I think that brown might eat a brick if you put butter'n'brown sugar on it." She grins. "He came lurking around when Briana did a cooking lesson, tried to tell everyone he was sooooo starving as he waddled along…"

Derin nods, making short work of his stew and settling the bowl aside for the moment, he might have some more later afterall. "Ugh, I dunna think I'd like that.. campin out on the observation level, sounds uncomfortable. Tho, i s'ppose 'tis better than freezin t'death." Surely everything will be back to normal by the time Seryth takes to the sands, or at least until another natural disaster decides to make itself known. He chuckles at the mention of Nibbles interrupting a cooking class. "Aye, he prob'ly would at that, I swear that brown eats as much as a weyrling dragon. An' even when he's stuffed full he still thinks he needs more, his favourite place to hang out is the kitchen. He knows her can always sucker at least one of the cooks into feeding him."

"…yeah," Soriana admits as regards Nibbles. "I think he probably cadged bites from a good half the class." She grins. "He's just lucky he doesn't get blocked up, that's all. Though maybe it'd teach him a lesson if he did." She pauses a moment, considering it, then, "Nah, probably not." Connecting the past and present is a hard trick for firelizards. As for the stands, "Yeah, it's really not. I mean, my mom had to stay there when Yumeth clutched, and… with everyone crowded in, it's going to be even worse."

Derin laughs at the fact that Nibbles managed to beg bites from so many during the class. "Well, he is a cute lil fella, an' he knows hos to use that to his advantage." As for the thought of his firelizard blocked up, he wrinkles his nose. "I hope he doesn't, I'd hate to hafta deal with a blockage. Dersk got blocked up once when he was a hatchling, it wasn't pleasant." Nastiness, could you just imagine? "Fortunately it only happened once." Yes, lucky wherhandler. He swishes the liquid around in the flask again, hmming quietly. "I might hafta see about getting this refilled before I head back out to work."

Oh, yes, Soriana can imagine. In fact, she doesn't have to imagine, she just has to remember, because that's just the sort of thing that grade one dragonhealers are supposed to experience first hand so they know both symptoms and treatment. Her nose wrinkles up as she nods in sympathy to Derin, then laughs. "I'm not sure whose it is," she says of the flask. "It was here when I got here. But… well, search and rescue's important. Gotta do what it takes to keep you moving through the night." She grins.

Derin grins, tilting the flask back for another drink. "I'll be sure t'drop it in the lost and found when I'm finished with m'shift." He offers helpfully. "Gotta keep m'blood pumpin', aye. And I always believed that alcohol keeps you warmer inside longer than klah and stew. Not that there's anythin wrong with th'klah or th'stew of course." He does enjoy his food, maybe not as much as his little brown, but, well, Rin's a big boy so he obviously quite enjoys his food. "Iff'n ya find someone comin' t'look fer it, ya can always point 'em t'me."

"I dunno about that," Sori says of the alcohol, "But, hey, if it works." She grins, then adds, "I'll tell 'em to check the lost and found… come morning. If they're out worrying about their flask tonight, well… maybe they should get to bed instead." She just barely stifles a yawn. "…and so should I, as soon's I hear back." She gives the kitchen door a hopeful look, then glances back to explain, "We've got a secondary generator at the Annex, for the incubation sands… but someone got it diverted to the burners where we make our klah. If we can just get some ingredients and a pot, we'll be all set to make our own food and not have to trek back here through the cold." Even dragonhealers can manage to cook stew, right?

Derin chuckles, "I dunno either, but I'm willin t'try it anyways." He eyes his empty bowl, then the stew. "I reckon I should get back t'work now." He shivers at the thought of going back into the cold. Finally he decides to grab his bowl to put it in the wash bin, tucking the flask into a pocket of his coat before moving to retrieve his gloves. "Y'should get some rest, 'tis late. Thanks fer keepin' a lonely wherhandler company." He winks, turning towards the door after giving a wave. He takes a breath and shoves his hood over his head before moving out. "Goodnight." He calls behind him.

Soriana chuckles to Derin, and nods. "Good luck!" she calls as he finally makes his way out. Fortunately, she doesn't have to linger long, for shortly after he departs, out comes the cook again and makes for Soriana with a large pot in hand. Both hands, actually, because it's heavy. Inside is a half-frozen hunk of herdbeast and an assortment of root vegetables from the storerooms. They haven't even been scrubbed, let alone chopped. That's being left for the volunteer to do. Soriana takes the pot as it is thrust upon her, and oofs as the discovers just how heavy it is. Enough food to feed a small wing! …which is nice, except for the bit where she's having to carry it. "Thanks," she manages to say, and recieves a brusque nod and a, "Try not to burn anything down," from the cook. Sori laughs awkwardly, hefting the heavy pot, and the cook gives the one of actual extant stew on the fire another few stirs as Soriana heads off with her burden.

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