Cold Stone Hold Main Courtyard
The bones of Pern herself have been pulled from the bosom of the planet and now rest against her spine, stacked by man and beast to defend against an era not long enough gone. Built into the side of one of the many mountains in the region, Cold Stone Hold stands as both a grim reminder and as a place of hope, proof of humanity's costly victory over the Thread menace.
High stone barriers serve as walls around the main hold, owing wood for a single gate alone at its main entrance. What buildings there are rise up out of the ground like the tips of great, stony fingers, structures built entirely of rock. Yet, despite the seemingly rough-hewn appearance, a more subtle artistry exists within the hold proper. Walls are arrow-straight in places and artfully curved in others. Cottages and small villas might all be mounds of boulder and pebble, yet each has its own distinct similarities. Over fifteen families live within the sheltering walls of Cold Stone, their houses and other structures gathered around a larger, central keep that bears the standards of the Lord and Lady holders themselves.
Around you, the quiet hustle of a hold's daily life can be heard, and while the hold lacks some of the more modern touches seen in the south, its inhabitants do not seem to have noticed at all. The air is thick and crisp, laden with the smells of stone and earth, freshly baked bread and the sweat of beasts. Cold stone with a warm, beating heart.
Late afternoon in Xanadu's Springtime finds Thea not with the drill practice, for thanks to her advanced pregnancy she's been grounded. So she's resting in the Weyrbarn, at least that's what she's trying to do, stretched out upon her back half-dozing when a gold firelizard pops out of Between overhead with a squeak of surprise and settles on the 'hill' of her rounded belly. Eyelids crack open and the junior is scrutinizing the critter, "Hello, don't know you." But it's obvious there's a message attached and the firelizard is waiting for her to remove it. When that is done, the 'lizard does not wait for a reply, but immediately launches and disappears while Thea reads, then sits to smooth that sundress she's wearing, shoves feet into her boots and grabs her jacket, alarm washing across her features. It's just another few seconds and she's out the door and on Seryth, who has perfected that roll to the side for her by now so she doesn't have to climb up. Hands shake as she snaps herself in and it's clear she's not thinking ahead, simply reacting.
It's a terse message that comes through to Siebith from Seryth, the growl of thunder in her voice, « Something is not right. She goes home. » And in that communication there is nothing of her Rider in it, which tells that Thea has her mind on one thing only: to get there.
Drills however are just what D'had is up to this afternoon, like so many others. Watching from the sidelines for the time being as he surveys the skills of the group. That message relayed from Seryth finds the Weyrsecond excusing himself however. Quickly mounting Siebith then launches to follow replying simply enough, though a hint of his rider's concern filters through, « He will meet her there. »
And when Seryth lands in Thea’s former mountain hold there's another roll to the side to let her rider off, neck curved to whuffle in concern at the anxiety she's picking up from Thea, although nothing's been said. Dismounting is awkward and she's shaking from cold. Sundresses aren't the best to Between in - there's only so much a flight jacket will do, after all. She's unaware of Seryth's communication with Siebith and so hurries into the hold without waiting for D'had.
Siebith is only seconds behind Seryth in landing, though seconds enough to miss Thea's entrance into the hold. D'had is just as quick to dismount as he was to follow and thus, soon enough he too is letting himself in though where to go from there is less certain and the question follows to the gold waiting outside as he attempts to navigate the halls and catch up with the junior.
An attendant enters the main hall, looking slightly flustered by not one, but now two dragonriders in the space of but a minute or so. Perhaps he's recalling the last time a rider was here, for he doesn't appear happy to see the Weyrsecond. There's a slight hunching of shoulders, an attempt to cover apprehension that doesn't quite succeed as he bows respectfully, "Sir, may I offer you something to drink, or…?"
That attendant gains attention from the rider as soon as the movement of another person is spotted. D'had shakes his head for the offer of a drink even as he questions. "No, lookin' for the weyrwoman. You see which way she went?" A tinge of worry coloring his words even though he does his best to cover it.
The attendant's eyes flicker over the rider, faint surprise for the abrupt manner in which refreshment is declined, but points back over his shoulder to the wide, curving stone staircase behind him. "Left at the top of the stairs to Lord Thadan's apartments." There's a hint of warning in his tone as he adds, "Please, Sir, quietly. Lady Rensea is not well." He turns, placing one foot on the thickly carpeted stairs to lead the way.
D'had nods, already continuing on his way as he tosses a quick "Thanks" over his shoulder for the attendant. The stairs are taken two, sometimes three, at a time. Hopefully he'll catch up and not make too much of a scene with his entrance. At the top of the stairs it’s a glance each way before the direction given is remembered and he heads to the left.
As D'had starts on his way up those stairs, only partially muted by the stone walls of the hold, he'll be able to hear from outside a bellow of furious protest that rings out from Seryth. Approaching footfalls are absorbed by that carpet, so the scene the Weyrsecond comes upon in that upper hallway is not interrupted, for neither of the two there hear him. Outside of an intricately carved and heavily polished set of closed double doors stand Thea and Thadan, the latter's back to the hall. The holder is leaning in hissing something through clenched teeth in his daughter's face, the fingers of one hand tightly around the junior's throat and she's been backed up against the doors. His other hand is prying hers away from his wrists. Thea's eyes are losing focus, her voice barely audible, "Da- please. It's Thee." Using her brother's nickname for her, perhaps hoping to snap him out of wherever his mind has gone.
Definetly not a the scene D'had was expecting to come upon, nor is it a good one for him to walk into. "Holder!" he shouts, making his presence known even as he strides forward at an overly quick pace to reach for the man in attempt to pry him off his weyrmate. Loud enough despite the warning from the attendant of being quiet for the Lady's sake.
There's little response from Thadan at that shout - a jerk of his head, but he is intent, growling words that are not complimentary to Thea's state of being with child. Her use of the nickname was a mistake, apparently, for his features darken and he shakes his daughter as his grip on her neck tightens. The note still gripped in Thea's hands flutters to the floor as her fingers loosen and slip from Thadan's wrists.
Holder and Weyrsecond or not seems to matter little to D'had at this point as he swings a fist in the direction of Thadan's face. "Let her go!" he growls lowly, throwing a second if there's time between the first and the holder's inevitable reaction to it. Outside there's an echo of the bluerider's anger emitted from Siebith as he rests low to the ground, ready to spring if only he could somehow reach within the walls.
Thadan begins to turn his head at the growled words from D'had, whose fist connects with the side of the holder's head and the second hits him full in his face, the look of surprise still on it as his hands release Thea and he topples onto the carpet, completely out. Thea sways, draws a rasping breath and just stares down at the man at her feet before reaching for D'had. It might be for balance or to restrain him or both. She's dazed enough not to say much, but what she manages thickly might make sense, "Note said he wasn't here."
D'had might well have tackled the man right then and there if it weren't for that reminder of Thea's presence. Instead her touch has him turning from Thadan to Thea, wrapping an arm protectively over her shoulders as he looks her over for any damage that might have occurred. "How's your Ma?" is the only thing he has to say, given that he knows the reason for her visit now thanks to the attendant from downstairs.
Thea wraps her arms around her weyrmate's waist, leans against him for a moment. Around her neck are reddish marks beginning to bruise where Thadan's fingers were. "Haven't seen her yet. Ran into him coming out-" Her reply is interrupted as behind them those doors are opened by Lady Rensea's irate attendant.
D'had nods, "You alright?" he then asks, his free hand reaching to tuck a strand of hair behind her ear even as he ignores said attendant. Some things are just more important than quiet and he's likely to guess that even Lady Rensea will agree that this was one of them. "I'll wait out here if you want…"
"What's all the noise out-" The older woman's gaze wavers from weyrsecond to weyrwoman to the prone holder, where her eyes widen with a little blink, "What's-?" Thea's nod that she's alright turns into a wince at that moment and perhaps D'had can feel the tightening of her belly since she is leaning against him. She doesn't say anything about it though. Her voice is controlled as she addresses the attendant, "Mair, see to Holder Thadan while I see my mother." D'had's offer to wait has her lifting a look of concern to him, then down to the man on the floor. She hesitates, "If he comes to and you are there…"
D'had's eyes flicker up to the attendant and then back the Thea. He nods as well, not completely convinced but he'll not argue with her about it right at the moment. As for Thadan coming to, "I'm not the one on the floor." Cocky as usual, if only to boost his weyrmate's spirits after that run in with her father. "Go if you want me though." He's just giving her the chance to see her mother alone.
That previous shout and scuffle have drawn more servants and thus Mair rises from checking on Thadan to speak with them in low tones a few steps away. Thea half-grins at D'had's words in spite of the situation, a grin that wavers in the direction of several emotions as she catches her lower lip between her teeth in another slight wince. "Mair, have them take Holder Thadan to one of the lower rooms and have Besk look at him." In an aside to D'had she explains, "He's the closest thing to a healer we have." She adds to the others firmly, "I want the door to the room you put him in secured so he cannot get out." Taking a deep breath, she murmurs to D'had, "I'll just be a few minutes. Think I might need to get home."
D'had nods, and nods again as Thea gives her orders and explains a few things for his benefit. "I'll be here," he notes before pressing a light kiss to her lips and leaving her be so that she can move off to check in with her mother. As for him, he's far too content to simply lean back against the wall and glare at the holder as the attendants tend to him.
It is quite awhile before Thea returns and in that time Thadan is carted away downstairs, Mair returns and passes by D'had muttering something about a hard-headed, stubborn old holder who will be fine and continues into her lady's rooms. When Thea does exit the suite, Mair is right behind her, frowning with fire glinting in her eyes. Moisture beads a fine sheen upon Thea's brow and she's looking decidedly uncomfortable with a face gone pale. "Let's go," she says to D'had shortly, trying to hook his arm with hers and make her escape. "I'll tell ya about my ma at home." Mair seeks to meet the weyrsecond's eyes over the top of the junior's head and she adds a slight headshake of disagreement as to going anywhere.
D'had continues to glare at the holder until he's out of sight and then continues to wait, a bit impatiently. A quirk of a grin tugs at his lips for Mair's returning commentary on the man. When Thea finally emerges it’s concern that touches his face, and while day to day he might not be overly observant of some things he does happen to catch that look from Mair even as the goldrider tries to drag him off. "Maybe you should rest before we head back…"
"Not tired." Thea actually snaps the words, brought up short by her linked arm when the weyrsecond doesn't move. She tugs just a bit, attempting to get him to quit leaning on that wall and start moving. Her effort doesn't last long, however. With a sharp intake of breath, her other hand lifts to grip D'had's forearm and she manages to squeeze quite hard for a few moments. Behind Thea, Mair pipes up, "Think you should wait, Ma'am." At Thea's headshake, the attendant appeals directly to the weyrsecond. She drawls, "Don't know about dragonriding much, but can a rider visualize when they're in the middle of labor pains?" There's a smirk over the top of Thea's head at the man. It's not every day she gets to see her holder popped and shock an-about-to-be daddy of a weyrsecond too.
D'had shakes his head. "Healer said to rest if you need to." And likely he knows than to expect that she actually does. He has been through such things as women in labor before, but that was still plenty long ago for him now, not that he was all that good at sticking around for it then either… Thea's grip hints at something of the sort, but still Mair's comment comes as something of a shock for him. "I.. um… babe?" Blink.
Babe. Thea loves the endearment, but today? "What?" Thea snaps the words again, likely having tuned out the words spoken to D'had by the jubilant Mair there behind her. She turns to blink up at her weyrmate with eyes that are slow to clear from the pain. His blinking confusion in turn bewilders her, "Let's go." Urgent now, "Need to get home." Behind them Mair throws her hands up in the air, mutters a few choice cusswords and passes the pair to head down the stairs. Thea is oblivious to her departure. "What's the matter, D'had?" She winces again, holds her breath.
D'had blinks again, turning his gaze to follow Mair off down the hall for a moment before Thea's question brings him back to her. "You… The baby…" Beat. "Maybe we should stay a bit longer? Let.." Oh what was that healer type's name again now? She just said it not so terribly long ago. "Healer and all that." Yeah. That makes sense. Right?
Thea frowns. Used to D'had's short sentences as she is, she doesn't follow. "You're not making sense." Abrupt and irritable isn't her usual manner, but she isn't taking note. She slips her arm from his, and starts towards the stairs. Over her shoulder, "I'm going home. Before Thadan wakes up." One hand lifts to rub at her belly. "And see the healers. Ate something I shouldn't have." Perhaps thinking that because for the last several months that's what they've been telling her.
D'had shakes his head and it takes a moment for him to follow. "Thea…" he hesitates. "The baby… might be coming?" He can put things together and her mood is certainly helping him to see that that might be the case though its still an awkward thing for him to mention even if he is nearer 40 than 14. "Between might not be a good idea just now.."
Thea stops at the head of the stairs. Stop and turns around when he says her name. Blinks and stares just a bit too. But she doesn't comment on that. What he's said sinks in and she swallows a few times, "Well, if it's coming, all the more reason to-" go home would be her next words, but she never says them, for up the stairs comes Mair with Cold Stone's headwoman in tow. "Put her in Miss Thea's rooms and I'll go get-" The pair reach the landing, Mair passes D'had with a cheerful "I'll go tell Lady Rensea the good news." And she actually patpats the man as she goes by. Thea protests, "I can Between, I-" Her knuckles turn white where she's gripping the rail.
The other two women are all but ignored as D'had watches Thea and raises a brow at her protest. Though that next contraction has him stepping to her side again, automatic as it might be. "You sure? Might be better if we wait..?" He turns a glance toward Mair at that pat of hers. One of them help him here!
The headwoman is one step behind Mair on those stairs carrying towels and linens and a few other things. While Mair disappears into Lady Rensea's suite, the headwoman makes to pass the riders, discreetly ignoring their conversation. But that contraction is spotted and she thrusts the stack of folded material at D'had, takes Thea's arm and draws the junior with her, ignoring any protests, should they be made. Arguing wastes time, in her mind. Thea would argue with D'had had she the breath to do so, but right now she doesn't. Instead she moves meekly down the hall and steps into her old room.
D'had nearly drops those linens when they're shoved at him, but after some fumbling with it all he manages not to drop it (even if the pile isn't as neat as it once was). Of course rather than follow like he's expected to he just stands there, somewhat dumbfounded, for the moment watching as the headwoman leads Thea off to her room. "I'll just.. um.. wait here." Yeah. That sounds good.
The headwoman pauses and glances back at the weyrsecond, giving him an up-down look bordering on amusement. "Need ya to bring those, if ya will Sir." It's mildly and even respectfully said although there's the look in the woman's eyes of wishing to burst into laughter. Thea isn't noticing, just clings to the headwoman's arm and grits her teeth, trying to bite back a little moan. "Ma always said I'd get it all back."
D'had follows, reluctantly, when he's told. He does still hesitate at the doorway however. "Where?" he inquires uncertainly glancing down to the linens as if to perhaps clarify the single word of question. He'll leave them and get out if allowed by the looks of it.
Cold Stone Hold - Thea's Quarters
While certainly not spacious, Thea's room at Cold Stone Hold is still a little larger than standard guest quarters found at the complex. The majority of the room is dominated by a massive, four-poster bed, complete with a canopy overhead. Unlike those found in fancier establishments, however, this appears to have been built for utility. Heavy drapes line the bed's perimeter to keep cold drafts down to a minimum during the winter months, and the bed itself is raised off of the ground so that coal baskets can be placed beneath for additional heat. Discrete wooden stepstools rest at the foot of the bed on each side to make the very literal task of climbing into bed easier.
Beyond the bed, the room is remarkably spartan for the lodgings normally associated with a hold family member. A simple, dark-wood wardrobe rests against one wall, free of un-necessary adornments, save for a simple, half-height mirror that hangs on the outside of its right door. A small chest of drawers rests on the wall next to the room's main door and a utilitarian coat rack does double duty between jackets and thick, insulated bathrobes just outside of the small lavatory entrance. Two windows straddle the head of the bed on the wall it rests against, and a third stands next to the wardrobe, offering one of the only views the hold has to offer, given its several subterranean chambers.
Some warmth has been added to the room in the form of several heavily woven rugs, all appearing to be hand-made and of high quality. They circle the bed and form little paths to all of the frequently trafficked areas of the room, making for less discomfort when one wandered around bare-footed. A simple coal and wood brazier rests in one corner, providing heat.
The headwoman ignores that one question in favor of settling Thea in her bed before returning for that all-important stack of towels. Oh, she's noting the look on the man's face; she's seen it all too often before. Lucky him for stopping in the doorway and not entering. She won't have to shove him out the door then. She points to a set of chairs out in the hallway. "You can wait there." She's not giving him a choice. Thea's contraction passes and she's got her breath back, but she remains mute, only sends an appealing look at D'had. Something about that look on his face has her biting back a protest to his leaving.
D'had slinks back into the hall once those towels are taken, readily allowing the headwoman to slam the door in his face if she so wishes. Oh he'd be there if someone made him, but as far as he's concerned that's women's business and he'll just wait like he's told. And likely pace up and down the hall more than his fair share in so doing.
The door is shut quietly, but firmly. Hours. They pass slowly while voices on the other side of that door murmur now and then. Although it was midday when they had arrived in the High Reaches area, it is now late evening here. Darkness cloaks the rugged mountains above the hold and it has been quite some time since silent hands opened glows in the hall and brought a tray of food to both the room and the man who waits outside in the hall. From inside the room there is a muffled cry, just one. Then silence and the wail of a babe.
D'had is not good at this sort of waiting. He's just not. Sitting lasted for but a moment before the pacing started. Pacing interspersed with random bouts of taking a seat, but even then he was restless. Food brought is hardly touched. Should eat, yes, but should and doing are very different things. It’s the sound of the baby that startles him in the end, his feet leading him back to the door, hesitating there - ready to knock but not sure if he should just yet. They'll tell him when they're ready. Right?
It might seem too long a time before D'had is summoned to see his newborn child. More time passes. More murmuring, the tone of one turns from encouraging to commanding. After a time that door is jerked open, but only a crack and the headwoman sticks her head out, blinking to find D'had right there. It is not to summon him in that she is there, however. She pins him with a stare. Her request is terse and quietly spoken, "Need you to run down to the lower lever and ask for Besk. Need him." She draws a breath, adding briskly, "Quickly, man."
D'had blinks when the woman speaks. "She's…" Beat. "They..?" Okay seems to be the missing word before he shakes his head and blinks again. "Right. Besk." Repeating the name to himself a few times as he turns. Autopilot anyone? Somehow he manages to find his way down to search out the man and returns trailing a step or two behind.
Besk has been with Thadan, but whoever has helped D'had find him, remains behind to watch the holder while Besk grabs a leather bag, scoops several instruments into it and strides off. On the way to the upper level, he comments briefly to the weyrsecond about matters between Thadan and the rest of the hold, how the man seems increasingly erratic and unreasonable of late. Assuring him that the man is fine and just sleeping. Mostly he makes some reassurances about the young weyrwoman upstairs.
D'had nods to show that he's listening, but really the look on his face is rather clear that he could care less about the holder's well being at this point. Though the assurances on his weyrmate are more readily heard though they still leave him uncertain.
At the door Besk raises a brow, a silent question as to whether the weyrsecond wants to enter. The headwoman doesn't give D'had a choice this time. Her hand reaches past Besk to haul him over the threshold. "Hold this one." And a bundle is carefully handed to poor D'had. When he's got it, she's back to Thea and that bed with the drapes pulled mostly closed where Besk is already working. It's very quiet over there save for two voices that aren't Thea's murmuring.
Deer in the headlights is D'had as he's pulled into the room. He remains standing wherever he's left, the baby handed over its awkwardly that he curls it into his arms, staring down uncertain what to do now despite the fact that he's already been through the father motions twice. When he finally comes to his senses again his dark gaze lifts towards the bed. Waiting.
"That's your daughter, Sir." The headwoman informs him with deliberate cheer just before she steps away from him. She's seen the look on his face, so points to a chair that's been pushed away from the bed to make room; he might need it? Down there in that bundle is a squinched up red-faced babe squinting up at D'had with eyes so pale there's no mistaking they'll be ice green some day. There's a lot of dark, wispy hair, matted to the top of her head, still damp from being hastily washed. From inside the curtains there's a few questions and Thea answers once, her voice obviously tired. "Now!" Besk's voice and one low-voiced cry from Thea follows then there's a brief silence before yet another babe squalls.
D'had blinks down at the baby in his arms once again. If he's disappointed by the idea of another girl it doesn't show, but then again he's still working on getting over that shocked stage. A stage that only beings again with that squalling once he realizes it's not from the girl he's holding.
Besk steps out, pauses beside D'had with a hearty clap to the weyrsecond's shoulder. "Congratulations, man. Twins." There's a smirk for the obviously rattled father before he adds with a head jerked towards the drapes surrounding that bed, "She's fine." Besk heads out then, leaving the headwoman to tidy things. It's not so long before the headwoman emerges with a bundle of used linen, twitches back those drapes to reveal Thea propped up against the pillow-covered headboard. She's donned a crisp, clean white linen gown and holding an infant in her arms, her eyes seeking D'had as those curtains are pulled away.
D'had is still rather shell-shocked when Besk congratulates him, giving a slight smirk of a smile in reply. Right. He's excited. Really. The assurance that Thea is indeed well finds him rising from the chair as the curtains are pulled back. That silly half smile finding the junior weyrwoman.
Thea's lips curve in a secretive smile as she finally spots D'had's face. Something's on her mind, but she doesn't say just what. The headwoman passes the weyrsecond with that bundle of laundry, glances at the window. "I'll have breakfast sent up." For dawn is just breaking at Cold Stone Hold this late winter morning. Thea waits until that door closes behind the headwoman, "Well, are you just gonna stand way over there? Or are you gonna come and meet your son?" There's room in that huge wide bed, which is where he'll have to sit, for it's set too high to sit beside in that chair.
D'had finally moves over to her side once the headwoman has passed him on her way out. That comment from Thea causing him to blink. Oh, right. There's TWO of them. He does settle onto the edge of the bed, high as it might be, and peers over at the babe she holds. "How you doing?" he finally asks, looking back up to her.
Thea watches D'had carry her daughter, notes the way his hands are so careful with the infant, keeps her attention on him as he inspects the one she's holding. He's got the same dark hair as his sister and his face is just as red and squished looking too. He's squeaking and waving tiny hands irritably as he blinks dark eyes up at the man. Thea tips her head back against those pillows behind, giving her weyrmate a faint smile. "Better now that it's over." Laughter dances in her eyes, "You okay?" Because he's looking so dazed.
D'had smirks, leaning over to press a kiss to his weyrmate's cheek. "Good." Beat. "Yeah. Just.. two.." One would have been more than enough, but two? What's he going to do with two of them at the same time?
Go as crazy as they will no doubt drive their mother? Thea's smile grows as her eyes flicker from his smirking mouth back to his eyes and she leans her cheek into that kiss. Her gaze falls to the babes, "Yeah," it's breathed out in a note of wonder. "The healers never told me I was carrying two." She didn't look all that huge and the babes are smaller than the average. It's a few moments before she can manage to work up the nerve to ask what's been on her mind. Nodding to the pair they're holding, "Will you name them?"
D'had hmms, gaze falling back to the twins. "Well, guess we're stuck with 'em now," he chuckles finally beginning to pull out of that dazed place. His eyes return to focus on Thea at that request. "Sure you don't wanna? Some name means something to you. Something you like?" He can, but he'll let her if she wants to.
Thea would so pop him for that comment if she weren't holding the man's son in her arms. Instead she settles for a finger-thwack wherever she can reach without irritating the babe by jostling him. "Nope." she sounds absolutely sure of it. "Rather you do it. I like the way your people named you and the way Donnchadh, sounds," saying it the way he's told her it's pronounced, don-ah-ha. "Pick something that means something to you and it will mean a lot to me."
D'had hmms and nods, clearly thinking over names even as he does so. A long bout of silence (at least on his part) follows. Thinking. It's something that takes time after all, finding the right names. His gaze settles on one, then the other. Back and forth a few times though each time his gaze lingers for a time. "Marella and Muireadhach?" he finally comes up with something, there is question in that decision though. He can come up with something else should she not like one, the other, or both.
Thea remains quiet, allowing D'had time to think. While he's doing that she traces light fingers down her son's barely-there nose, tickling his palm with a fingertip and watching as tiny fingers curl 'round it in response. "Mar-el-a." Thea repeats with a soft smile, tilting her head to eye the girl D'had holds. "It's pretty." She leans down to whisper, "Mur-ah-da" into Muireadhach's silky hair before kissing the top of his head. Leaning back she asks her weyrmate, "What do they mean?" Her eyes twinkle teasingly, lips curve into a grin, "And don't tell me they mean Trouble and Trial, either."
D'had chuckles, "Would I do that to me?" Nothing about her in there of course, though his grin tells otherwise. "Marella is 'shining sea' and Muireadhach is 'lord of the sea'." Seeing a theme there? Well, heritage and all that. Right?
Thea's eyes dance at D'had as she laughs quietly, "You mean your mother didn't tell you you'd get it all back someday, too?" She and Tharen were perfect little angels, so the thought certainly must have come in regards to D'had and Lairgnen. She peeks down at the now-sleeping pair and there's no mistaking the pride in her expression, "My sea-babes." Tears glitter in her eyes as she reaches a hand for her weyrmate, "May they grow to be as strong and good as their daddy."
D'had chuckles, "Mighta blocked that part out?" he replies with amusement in his voice. "Side's already have some," which might not be the best thing to remind her of at the moment, but it's truth and it's what comes out of his mouth. Hand finds his and he gives it a light squeeze.
"Then you must have been a terrible brat to receive it back five-fold, hmm?" Thea teases, not at all bothered by the mention of his others. She's squeezing his hand back saying something to the effect of thanks and sweet, gushy things like it when the rapping of knuckles on wood interrupts her. That door opens and there's the headwoman with that promised breakfast tray, followed by two nannies who reach for the babes with open arms. "Oh, but, but…!" Thea's arms tighten just a bit around Muir.
"Didn't have Hali til she was fourteen…" D'had replies with a continued chuckle. Which may or may not have been good for him. But then he did have Evee around so.. There's those others then and he lets Marella go off to one of the nannies without much of a chance to protest. A blink of confusion and then things make sense again. "You need ta eat babe."
"For all those wonderful teenage turns." Thea returns smugly, flashing a grin at her weyrmate while ignoring the nanny patiently waiting for her to hand the boy over. D'had's comment though, she doesn't ignore that, eyes shift to take in the tray, loaded with enough for two and the plates, mugs and silverware to eat with. The scents of klah and freshly-baked sweet rolls, fried tubers, eggs, and a special sausage made with wild mountain critters special to the area waft through the room. It's tempting. "I'm starved, but at least let his daddy hold his son for the first time?" And she offers Muir to D'had rather than the nanny.
D'had gingerly takes the boy from Thea, if she's only going to give the baby to him he'll live with that. Not that he doesn't want to hold him too, but… Well this is D'had. Babies are definitely not his specialty. "Now eat," he notes, rising to his feet to let them set the tray in front of the weyrwoman.
"You -both- need to eat and then sleep. You, Weyrsecond-" the headwoman points at D'had, "-wore the rug out walking back and forth all night and you-" she levels a finger at Thea "-worked all night to bring these into the world, remember?" She waits until Thea's arms are empty, places that tray on the bed between the pair, crosses her arms and tap-taps her foot until she thinks father and son have had enough bonding time. She nods the other nanny forward, who ducks her head apologetically as she reaches to take Muir from D'had. Thea's too busy watching her weyrmate with Muir to start doing anything with the food.
D'had hands the boy over easily enough, though his eyes remain fixed on the child a moment longer. It could be said he trusts a nanny with such a newborn better than himself. His baby or not. "I know, I know," he mutters to his pacing in the night.
As the nannies retreat, Thea's eyes follow them until they are out of sight. And so doing, she misses the smirk and twinkle in the headwoman's eyes in response to D'had's mutter. "We'll bring them back when they need feeding, otherwise you two are to eat and sleep." The woman isn't giving them any choice in the matter, moving to hand the weyrsecond a few towels, a robe and a huge pale linen… garment that looks suspiciously like a nightgown. "You can bathe in there," she tells him, her head tilting towards the lavatory. "Sleep," she repeats as she exits the room and shuts the door behind her.
D'had just stares at the items he’s given for a moment before reaching out a hand to take them. A glance is shared with Thea once the headwoman has retreated as well and he drops said linens on the end of the bed before dropping himself back beside the goldrider. "How you doing?"
Thea just snickers at the sleeping shirt D'had's been given. "That's probably Thadan's," she says with a smirk, the information likely guarantees the weyrsecond won't be wearing it. "I'm… tired," she answers him honestly while passing him a plate and removing covers off of this and that, releasing steam and the savory smell of spices. She can be obedient in a rare once in awhile, so she's loading up a plate for herself while thinking. "And… well…" she lets out a whoosh of a breath, "Two of them!"
D'had makes a face in the direction of the night shirt. Yeah, he won't be wearing that. "You're allowed ta be babe," he chuckles for her answer. At least she's admitting it and following orders on eating and sleep for once. Not that he is exactly. He will, he's just letting her go first! So when she's done loading a plate he follows suit. "Yeah… Two…" He still hasn't got that quite through his head. "Gonna be busy…" And terrifying?
"I am allowed, huh? You're so generous." Thea's clearly amused at the face D'had makes, "You know, Tharen wouldn't wear them either after he hit thirteen turns. Something about a not wearing a dress to bed." There's a bout of quiet snickering coming from the junior. She stabs her fork into a piece of sausage, "Busy. Guess so." For a moment she looks apprehensive then grins, "Maybe I can rope Uncle Tharen into helping with them."
D'had chuckles. Well at least he can find amusement in it all. "He's got that right," he says of the shirt/dress and Tharen's thoughts on them. "But maybe we should just look for a foster instead of lettin' your brother help." Might be safer that way. For all of them.
"Cold up here in the winter," Thea points out about not wearing the thing before mock-leering at him. "But I'll keep ya warm baby." Indeed it might be mid-spring in Xanadu, but here in the mountains of Cold Stone, it is winter already. There's a fire burning in the fireplace, but stone rooms do not heat well. Fork is halfway to her mouth - and it stops right there when he mentions the word 'foster'. "What?" Blink. "No way, they're -mine-. I'm not letting someone else raise…" sputter-sputter-glare.
D'had leans over to bump his shoulder into hers, tossing a wink her way. "Yeah, well I got good blood." Or something like that. There's a fire and plenty of blankets. He'll survive one night. "No no," he all but panics given her reaction to that word. "Just meant… No. Not like that. Just someone ta help out. Both got duties we gotta take care of too."
So sad. He doesn't need her with all that good blood and fire and blankets. Thea pretends to be miffed at his non-response, tilting her chin at him, "Hope ya survive then." She says tartly and resumes eating, silent through his protests that it's not 'like that'. "To help out." Flatly said and skeptically too. "In what way? And why do we need help, there's two of us." Eyes narrow juuust a bit at him.
"Babe, I didn't mean it like that," D'had protests. Honest he didn't! He's just that good at putting his foot in his mouth. "Just that we both got things we need to take care of is all. And trust me, you won't want my help." He was chased off by Asher one too many times to think she might. Not to mention that holding a baby while it's still and silent is VERY different than one that's moving and/or crying. When crying comes into play he's completely clueless.
"Yes I will." Thea says firmly. She doesn't know any of D'had's history with Asher or her brood. She's just been nearly choked by her father and given birth to two babes, so maybe she can be forgiven when she gives him a long, measuring look and asks, "Don't you… want them?" She puts her plate down on the tray. Appetite gone, she mutters, "Weyr's got a nursery and nannies for when we're on duty."
D'had blinks, eyes lifting from his plate to stare at her mid-bite. "Course I want them." What a stupid thing to ask. Does she honestly think he'd have been there like he was for the duration of the pregnancy if he didn't? As for his skills, she'll find out soon enough. "Nursery then, nanny." So he got the wrong word at the wrong time. Typical. Of course she can be forgiven though. "It'll work out," he assures, "Now finish eating. Hm."
Thea's not using logic at the moment, only emotions. Sometimes that equals stupid… "Oh." She drops her eyes and retrieves her plate. Works at finishing the food she knows she needs in silence. When the plate is empty, she places it back on that tray. "Sometimes…" Not looking at him, "I just can't figure you out." She flashes him an uncertain look, "You said I wouldn't want your help, but what I don't want is you not to be involved, Donn. We can mess up together, yeah?"
D'had chuckles when she finally speaks again. "Trust me, me and babies not a good match." Toddlers are .. okay, kids he can handle (sort of), but babies don't tell you what's wrong. "I'm here for you though." He'll do what he can and try to be supportive at least.
"What happened with your others that you'd say that? They made it thus far." Thea quirks a questioning brow at him. She's trying to understand. A tired smile tugs at the corners of her lips, "I guess it's lucky they don't stay babies for long." His promise he'll be there for her draws a nod, "Y'know, I'm still me, Donn, even though I'm a mother now too." She looks away towards that window, an unreadable look on her face.
D'had moves the tray out of the way, something to distract him for the moment if nothing else and at the same time make room for her to lie down. "Well didn't even know bout Hali til later. Resha I think I almost dropped a few times. That kinda left me out of the rest." He'd rather not drop either of these too. "Suppose so," that they aren't that little for long. "And I know. We'll figure it out babe."
Thea watches snowflakes floating past the window while he speaks, her lips curving into a grin at that admission, "Remind me to have you sitting down when you hold them then." She turns back, notes the tray is gone and slides down into the bed with a wince or two. "I trust you, Donn. You'll do fine." She reaches to rearrange that mound of pillows that she'd been propped up against, scooting some of them his way, then curls on her side with a half-smile for him, "I hope so." Her smile turns mischievous, "Sure you don't want to wear that dress?"
D'had chuckles, settling onto the edge of the bed beside her once again. "I'm sure. And I'm sure you'll be a wonderful mother to 'em both," he adds with a smile, leaning down to press a kiss on her temple. "I'm gonna go wash up. Get some sleep hun."
"Yes, Sir." Thea drawls cheekily, giving D'had a saucy salute. "Draw the drapes 'round when you come to bed, will you? It keeps off the chill some." And when he is there finally, she snuggles but not because D'had needs to be kept warm, nope. It's totally because she wants to. As they sleep, the winds pick up tempo and the snow increases until there's an early blizzard that blows across Cold Stone Hold for two days, so in the end, they are stuck there for a few days. And if Seryth and Siebith munch on a few of Thadan's prize camelids in the meantime, who can blame them?