Random Log: Xanadu Meets with Fort

Xanadu Weyr - Weyrleaders' Office

Office and retreat, this is the domain of Xanadu's Weyrleaders. The door is in the eastern wall, quite close to the southern end while the northern wall is dominated by big, expansive windows, framed by sumptuous deep blue drapes edged with a brilliant gold braid and tied back with a thick rope of braided gold and blue cord. In between, the eastern wall is covered floor to ceiling with shelves that house all sorts of records, manuals and supplies that are used on a day-to-day basis. The southern wall has the Weyrleader's desk — plain fellis wood, well polished and masculine. From behind his desk, the Weyrleader can look straight through the windows and out onto the main airspace of Xanadu. The western wall is where the Weyrwoman's desk resides: a lovely piece of furniture made of warm cherry wood. From her seat, a glance sideways gives her an equally good prospect out the window. There are a few other seats, some comfortably arranged around a low round table for small, informal meetings while there also some that can be drawn up to one of the desks.
On the south side of the door, the space is occupied by a low oblong table where refreshments can be set without someone needing to intrude. There is also an 'incoming' tray where incoming correspondence or similar items can be left.

Niva has the office door shut the majority of the way, cracked just enough so that it could be pushed open and she can half listen to what is going on outside. She's settled at her desk, a great pile of paperwork piled here and there, while a smaller stack of messages are in her lap, and its through these that she's sorting, chewing on her lip all the while

It sucks when you synchronize coming out of between and there's noone to see but your lonesome selves, however… knocking on the door with a light rap of knuckles, X'an glances sidelong toward the companion he came with, coughing politely to alert further to his and Elara's presence.

Outside Wiyaneth settles comfortably in the bowl, wings folded against her sides as she keeps out of the way. Elara fidgets with her gloves before tucking them into her jacket pocket and waits patiently, with her ever present smile, and a package in her hands.

Niva mutters something under her breath, and without looking up calls out a rather curt, "Come in!" It doesn't seem to cross her mind to find out who's there, for she's still paging through messages, "What is it now?"

Arching his eyebrows up, X'an coughs softly again, tucking one arm behind his back, stifling the faint grin that found its way onto his face and gentlemanly holds the door wider for Elara to enter, dipping his head. "Postal service, delivery for Niva. Cookies require signing for." is murmured, cheerfully and cheekily,

Elara giggles quietly as she sweeps in infront of her Weyrleader, smiling and holding out the package with a curtsey, one hand lifting her skirts. "And tea," she says, predictably, "nice mint tea from our own gardens." She studies Niva, her smile soft and warm.

Oops? At the greeting, Niva finally starts to realize that its not someone simply come to tell her the world is falling on her head. Or, maybe it is, but its not someone from Xanadu. Swiveling around her in chair, she colors slightly, identifying Elara and X'an, and a bit of a smile appears on her face. However, how forced it is is anyone's guess. "Why do I have a bad feeling you are just softening me up for the final blow, hm?" And she glances back and forth, before waving them both to chairs at the center table. "If you're willing.."

"Because my betting is that everyone and their Uncle Joe's been doing much of that, sometimes without the prelude of nicety ahead of time?" X'an drolly replies, shutting the door behind himself and his weyrwoman, waiting for Elara to take a seat before he does so himself, shaking his head. "We're not here to point fingers to yell, or inform you everything has gone to the dogs."

Elara smiles as she moves towards the refreshments table, setting the package down and unwrapping it. Quietly she arranges the cookies on a platter and with a nod to the brown perched on her shoulder, he wings outside. Elara lifts the tray and returns to the desk, setting it down before she sits, smoothing her skirts. Again she studies Niva and smiles, "How are you feeling?" she asks quietly.

Niva stifles a snort at X'an's comment. "You have no idea how right you are.. Though, I wouldn't be surprised if you were." A half smile at Elara, and she rolls her eyes. "Rather unpowerful, despite the fact that apparently I can command the powers of earthquakes and blights, not to mention summon mysterious attackers out of thin air."

X'an snorts faintly, shaking his head at Niva's comment. He settles himself with a glance to Elara's belly, reaching a hand out toward it, then slapping his own wrist to force fingers to lace in his lap. "No fussing in public!" - self-consciously he clears his throat, peeking up under his eyebrows at the local weyrwoman. "Some people can't see the wood for the trees. Mmmmph, maybe I'm just a lot nastier under the surface than I should be, but I really doubt you had a thing to do with the Istan Incident." capital letters conveyed in tone.

Elara can't help but a faint and sympathetic smile at that. "People believe the strangest things when they're frightened," she murmurs, and then nods in agreement with X'an. Her own hands lace over her stomach, and after a moment of polite hesitation she gets herself a cookie.

Niva glances at Elara and X'an for a long moment, arching her eyebrow, but stays on the subject at hand, for now. "I would never do such a thing - It would only invite retaliation on us, and I could never bear to lose C'ian." Glancing down at her lap, she shakes her head. "Casiella, though, seems to thing that I am the source of all evil, and that I'm a bewitching temptress. I can't say I'm upset that she's vanished."

"Evil stepmother syndrome." X'an nods just faintly, considers a cookie and digesting it with his eyes, gives a small pause. Eyes go to Elara, to the cookie, to Niva, to the cookie again, then as if discussing the price of fish… "She's at Fort."

Elara nods quietly, watching the Xanadu Senior for her reaction, not yet saying anything because she's not sure which path Niva is going to take.
Niva snorts slightly, shaking her head. "For some reason I was fearing that's what brought you here." Pause. "You're welcome to keep her, though I'm not sure you want her. Unpredictable, spoiled little snot that she is." And she shrugs, not saying anything else.

X'an gives another brief glance at Elara, then lets go of the smirk that's been threatening his features. "Actually, she's remarkably predictable, which is probably something she'd hate to hear. Acts before thinking, talks before she's had a moment to curb her tongue and she's more than a little bit hysterical. To note, Niva… she pounded a deadman aggressively for five minutes or so, after he'd killed himself on his own dagger, squealing that you were going to kill him for dying on her, ignoring her own stabwound /and/ the man bleeding on the floor." then in a quieter tone. "I was there. That's probably why I'm quite positive you had absolutely nothing to do with the attack, at least not intentionally." his eyes flicker to the cookie again, this time succumbing to the urge to take it. "She came to Fort seeking solace, spun an interesting story of you being a monster step mother, that she thinks you /did/ have something to do with the attack on S'va, and that you've been unstable and unhinged. This, coming from a girl that punched and shook a corpse in hysterical rage, doesn't inspire me to believing she's giving the whole story."

Elara's brown returns, barely able to hold himself in the air with his load of a kettle of hot water. Elara gets to her feet and takes the kettle from him, and he settles tiredly to her shoulder with a rumble. Fixing the tea, Elara still maintains her silence in the conversation at hand, letting X'an do the talking. He knows more than she does about this anyway. Brewing the tea, she brings three mugs back to the desk and sits down again, taking a slow sip of hers.

Niva stares at X'an blankly for a long moment, before shaking her head hurriedly, reaching for the mug of tea as a momentarily distraction for herself. Staring at it for a long moment, she looks back up at him. "Did she tell you what she did? She directly contradicted my rules. She said I was crazy, and that I need to step down. She knows /nothing/ of the situation and yet she thought to call me immature." With each thought, her voice gets a little louder, until with a deep breath, and she shakes her head, and settles for taking a sip of the hot tea.

"I know what she did. I know she contradicted the statement you made at conclave, and I told her to consider how it looked. She told -me- that she wasn't about to obey any rule that she plainly thought was ridiculous and insane. She has a -lot- to learn about politics and reputation." X'an reaches out one hand toward Elara's, smiling for the fortian weyrwoman, gaze dropping to the teacup. "I would call you proud, not about to let yourself be considered plaguebearers and making a point. Still, we have one of your juniors at our weyr, we're not making any judgements on the situation. We've got no right. Have we 'Lara?"

Elara gives X'an's hand a squeeze and shakes her head, "None at all, I assure you, Niva. Fort has never turned anyone away and we're not beginning now, but we want you to know that our taking in Casiella is not a mark of us taking sides. We aren't. We have no right to, as X'an said." Then she chuckles, "Perhaps Casiella and Svandis can learn something from each other, even."

Niva shakes her head slightly. "Lisle and I… spoke. Shortly. She understood the personnel ban, she understood the fear of retribution. What better way to sneak in an assassin then as a 'candidate'?" And she waves her hand around a bit. "As I said, you're more then welcome to keep her. Though, I doubt she'd leave her daddy, particularly in /my/ clutches."

Frowning faintly, X'an laces his fingers in Elara's, snorting a brief amusement at the notion of Casiella and Svandis in the same room together. He clucks his tongue though, hrms afterwards, then licks his lip, a precursor to a ponderous thought mayhap. "You know, if you've sanctioned transfer, there's really not a lot she can do about it, other than find another weyr if she doesn't like the notion of remaining and learning at Fort. C'ian's got more than a capable set of wings beneath him, that he can visit his daughter. It strikes me that distance and a different perspective is what would help you the most here. She's not even close to being capable of taking any leadership, I even got her to admit that openly. Teenage angst, oh how I /don't/ miss thee."

Elara nods, "She is very young, and from what I've seen, you both know how to push each other's buttons." She smiles a little apologetically, as if pointing that out may be offensive. "We're happy to have her at Fort for a while, to let things settle down, and let her grow up a bit in an environment that doesn't have…previous complications?" Like fathers and stepmothers and jealousy.

"To be honest, I'd be perfectly happy to see the backside of her; yet, I almost prefer her here, where I can keep an eye on her, and on occasion her father can enforce things. I hope that she'll outgrow it well before my own start going through those stages." That would be absolutely miserable, otherwise. "I don't want to force her on you, and I don't want her to think she can get away with defying myself /and/ Kilaueth at her whim." Niva sighs softly, shaking her head. Caught between a rock and a hard place.

X'an hmmns at this, looking to Elara silently.

Elara shakes her head, and then nods a little bit, setting her mug on the desk. "It's a difficult situation. But you wouldn't be forcing her on us. I've always encouraged rider exchanges and the like, different environments are good for growth." She thinks for a moment, "What if we brought Alisar in on this? Perhaps to mediate a discussion between the both of you? Because after hearing both of you, I'm almost certain some of this is just a lack of understanding the other's motives. You're protecting your weyr, she sees your actions as cruel."

Niva eyes Elara with widened eyes, shaking her head hurriedly. "Immature it may be, but I refuse to sit down with her - at least not yet. I want an apology before anything else. And, if her beloved father can't break into her skull, I doubt anyone can." Shaking her head again, she wrinkles her nose. "I'd rather it die a natural death."

X'an folds his arms over his chest, leaning back in the chair, mug resting on the crook of his arm. "From what I've heard, that's not really immature, considering from the riders that've reported in to me… she…. let me see if I get this straight… pitched a fit on the sands infront of every eye that attended? And all the dragons in the area heard what was thrown down. That you had to put up a partition between the sands arena?"

Elara nods slightly at Niva, a little saddened by that proclomation but what can you do? "Would you like us to carry a letter to her, from you, requesting that apology?" She's not about to be pulled into 'Niva told me to tell you that she wants you to apologize.' and 'Casiella told J'ymi to tell me to tell you no way, Jose.'

Niva sighs, nodding slowly at X'an. "A barrier because her queen was unable to share the Sands. They were even saying that egg didn't hatch because its likely she flung it around too much, but she took off before we could get a good look." And she shakes her head at Elara, "I'm not going to force the girl into anything. When she's mature enough to apologize, she can apologize. She needs to learn a lesson."

"It was cracked down one side. There was caked egg fluids around the line of splintering. Zsuzsath took it between as was its honouring." X'an replies quietly, nodding lightly to Niva, turning eyes on Elara once more. "Taking Casiella off Xanadu's rosta, training her somewhat… I do hope it won't actuate any change in the good relations we've worked to establish, Niva…."

Elara nods, in agreement with X'an, "Yes, that's not our intention at all." See? Tea and cookies does not equal we want to harm your weyr and steal your golds!

Niva nods slowly at X'an, murmuring acknowledgement. "Thank you for doing that - It was rather out of my ability to do so." Glancing back and forth between Elara and X'an, she quickly shakes her head. "If anything, you're willingness to put up with her and her stunts can only help it. I have Aeris, Elia, Saralynn, and Lymera - Casiella really only harms the group, its no real loss for us." Mm.. distaste.

X'an chuckles lightly, shaking his head a little. "We're not her relatives, we're not her father's weyrmate and weyrwoman. I also can't abide putting up with nonsense from people that really should know better. Her being a goldrider has nothing to do with anything if she can't conduct herself in the manner she was selected for, it's up to -her- to live up to her potential. Our current weyrling junior has something of an opposite case, but a very similar kind of upbringing, if Casiella's life has been one of privaledge that is… Svandis is my sister."

Elara chuckles softly, "Svandis is stubborn, headstrong, and acts before she thinks things through, and thinks she's right about everything. But no, we don't put up with any nonsense, or self-imposed ignorance. There's no excuse for that."

Niva rolls her eyes slightly. "Casiella had anything she wanted growing up. Her mother thought it would make her… happy. C'ian hardly agrees, no matter what the girl may spout off. Our own girls are no where near as problematic as Casiella was at their ages." A bit of snort, "I hardly feel right letting you deal with both of them, then. They may just reinforce each other, and then where will we be?"

"Facing an intervention." X'an's reply comes quickly. "With us," he squeezes Elara's hand. "we don't care how folks act inside our weyr's walls all that much. Everyone has bad days. But make us look foolish infront of visitors or out and about and you're in trouble. There's a little bit of malicious glee that dances up and down on the spot inside of me, wanting to see what happens when those two square off against one another; Svandis and Casiella that is. My sister's a hair puller."

Elara smiles, "We're hoping it'll be like looking into a mirror for each of them. Hopefully they won't like what they see and change." Faranth help us if they like what they see, become the best of friends, and take over Pern.

Niva waggles a finger at them. "If they pair up and come and take over this Weyr, I will blame the two of you, and never ever forgive you." She actually smiles a bit, though she tries to hide it. "Casiella has no issues taking on a 6 turn old, I doubt your sister will faze her."

X'an just steadily grins wider and wider, a mouth full of teeth that really should 'ting' like a toothpaste commercial, sparkles of light in frosty eyes. "Oh splendid. Does she stomp her foot, stick her fingers in her ears and hum 'la la la I can't HEAR you' too? Anywhich way…" nodding his head to his weyrwoman. "…we'll do what we can. Is there anything we can help you out with, all things considered?"

Elara lifts her tea again and drinks it easier now that it's cooled down.

Niva shudders, "Why do I have a feeling you know exactly what you are dealing with? Though, either way, better you then me." And she shakes her head quickly. "I, I think things are under control. Messages to reply to, but knowing Casiella isn't going to stalk in here and shove a knife in my back like she threatened to makes my life easier."

The man chuckles, twisting a wry little smirk. "Because I'm the third son out of the womb of a lady holder, had a great many younger siblings two tyrannical older ones, and a whole nest of people who took throwing tantrums to the form of Art?" Oh so droll, perhaps a little smug, X'an takes to his own tea, finishing it with much the same speed as Elara, he closes off with. "Stabbing doesn't hurt as much as you'd think. It's the healing that bothers, when all the nerves start complaining. Good sharp knife slides right in, severs all the feeling." - crunch, silencing himself with that purloined cookie.

Elara turns slowly to fix her Weyrleader with a look. Where did he learn that? She continues to study him, just for a moment longer than probably necessary before she looks back to Niva. "Fort's duties by the way," she says with a growing smile.

Niva shudders, shaking her head hurriedly. "I'd rather not experience either, thank you. No matter which is the one that hurts." And she nods at Elara, a bit of a smile appearing on her face, having relaxed some. "Thank you, and for the cookies and tea, too…"

X'an lifts a finger to tap his left shoulder at Elara's look, smiling vaguely as he does so. "Aye, forgot about that, didn't we? Fort's duties indeed."

Elara smiles at the mention of her tea, "You're quite welcome, it's a nice blend of mint varieties we've got at Fort. Found them growing wild and transplanted them to the garden."

Niva smiles at both of them again, inclining her head. "May I inquire - Do I owe you both congratulations?" And she looks rather embarrassed for inquiring, busying herself with a cookie from the plate.

X'an hmmms? Blinking at the question, it takes a moment for X'an's mind to change track, dropping in a tattle-tale way to gazing at Elara's belly. If that didn't say enough, the cheesy dopey kind of light that blossoms should be the clincher. "Not mine, but…" he nods, bringing the weyrwoman's hand up in a squeeze.

Elara chuckles, "It's A'rtomus' and mine's second child," she clarifies with a wide smile, "We're very excited. Kimmila is hoping for a sister. Tlazio I think could care less. We just hope it's healthy." She grins and gives X'an's hand a squeeze, "But this one," nodding to the Weyrleader, "fusses around me so much to make people think this baby is his."

Niva shakes her head. "You certainly had /me/ fooled. You're fussing more then C'ian does, and he's responsible for it!" An inclination of her head and she smiles. "I hope that its healthy, and that you remain so, also."

X'an laughs. "I have an excellent and close friend who's mothered a child of mine aswell as a weyr, besides which, I just love children. A'rtomus and I take it in turns to fuss. The way we figure it, it means fussing twenty three hours a day, including footrubs and spontaneous running to get odd things at all hours of the day. We've got it covered. Everyone should employ a second father, it makes the stress a lot easier." setting his cup down on the table, he pushes back in his chair, creaking on the legs with a wink. "Elara glows when expectant. It's something of a surprise though, that my son ended up being so large, considering she was craving salad all the time when carrying him."

Elara smiles fondly at the Weyrleader and then grins at Niva, "A second father is a must, you really should try it. They should rent them, in fact." She oys then and nods, "Tlazio was huge. I just can't explain it. How many children do you have, Niva?"

Niva shakes her head. "I think poor C'ian would be even more distraught.. He does a well enough job." A wink, and she waggles her fingers. "Two - Vivian and Nicca - Both wonderful girls." And without being able to pass up the opportunity, she murmurs softly. "Unlike their half sister."

"Hey!" X'an's slight exclamation seems to have been timed to cover the murmur with a note of overbright enthusiasm. "What do you think the going rate on Rent-a-dad would be?" Uh-oh, gone and got him on a quack notion, there. "I'm surprised C'ian's not totally puttified by now, if he's managed girls all around. I've got one daughter, I tell you… if I had any more, my backbone would probably melt. All Zanika needs to do is give me her puppy-eyes and I'd buy her the yokohama if I could."

Elara chuckles and pats X'an on the shoulder, "Lucky for us Kimmila's more of the practical type. Oh!" she turns to Niva and smiles, "I almost forgot to wish you a happy 30th turnday. I know it's a little late, sorry about that."

Niva grins, "He's certainly headed that way - The older the girls get, the harder it is for him to say no. Though, he is learning the meaning of the word 'no', thankfully." Daddy's little girls, both of them. A bit of a blush, and she inclines her head. "Thanks - Though, with all the commotion, late is only expected." A wink and she sips at what's left of her tea.

Elara lifts another cookie from the plate with another smile, "How old are your girls? Kimmila just turned three, perhaps she could come and have a play date sometime? I'm trying to expose her to different areas, and thankfully she's loving it."

Niva thinks for a second, biting into a cookie as an excuse for her hesitance. "Nicca's a turn and half, nearly, and Viv's almost 6. I'm sure Nicca'd love someone new to play with, even if she's a bit young. She's walking, and getting into everything she can. Faranth help us all."

X'an grins quietly, sneaking another cookie for himself.

Elara smiles, "Wonderful. Tlazio's about a turn and a half too, almost. They should all get together and play. Perhaps after this baby is born? Since I won't be able to between again in another sevenday." She's assuming Niva won't want to come visit Fort.

Niva glances sidelong at X'an for a moment before nodding at Elara. "That works well enough - Though if you can assure me that Casiella is well…. occupied.. I'd be fine bringing Nicca there."

X'an is thoroughly innocent! Thoroughly! Nope, just ignore the quietly smiling bronzerider watching the two women discussing offspring and playtime. When in doubt, inflict children, cookies and tea on people. It's the universal assimilator. "Ohhh, I think we can keep people busy and out of prospective hair."

Elara smiles again, "Excellent! Wonderful," she adds for good measure, and falls quiet, stiffling a yawn and blushing a bit. "Sorry, pregnancy makes me tired, it's not that I'm bored."

"I think I'll thank you in advance, in that case, X'an. Hopefully it will go well - Just let me know, and I'll bundle the girl up, and give you a bit of a break, Elara." And with a comforting smile, she shakes her head at Elara. "I completely understand - Thank you for the visit, and the bit of hope that I'm not completely crazy." And Niv stands, stretching a bit before moving towards the door. "And, don't hesitate if I can help, in any way." They have solved a major problem for her, afterall.

X'an rises, making hasty work of his cookie, holding his hand out to Elara to help her up. His words though, are for Niva. "It's fine, Niva. The continued support Xanadu's shown to Fort is appreciable. I'm not likely to forget that it was Xanadu and Igen that backed us at the last Conclave…" inclining his head to the woman, he concludes with. "Clear skies and swift winds. We'll arrange transport of whatever property Casiella has."

Elara accepts X'an's hand and rises to her feet, "Thank you for seeing us, Niva," she says warmly, "Hope to see you again soon." Out in the bowl, Wiyaneth rouses herself, flexing her wings in preperation for the flight home.

Niva nods quickly. "Thank you, again. You're both welcome anytime." Pause. "Clear skies, and good health, Elara."

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